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Full text of "The Shepherd of Israel, or God's pastoral care over his people : delivered in divers sermons on the whole twenty-third Psalm ; together with the doctrine of providence .."

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Collection of Puritan Literature. 



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O R 

God's Tajloral Care over His 


Delivered in Divers Sermons on the Whole 
Twenty- third Psalm. 

Together with 

The Doctrine of 


Pra&ically handled 
On M a t t h. io. 29 3 30 j 31. 

By that Reverend and Faithful Minifter of the Gofpel 

Perfected by himfelf, and Pcrufed by thofe whom 
He intruded with the publifhing of his Works. 

Printed by D.Maxwellfoi Sa.Gbllibrand at the Ball 
In S. Tattles Church-yard, 1658. 

y-Kf friW -■•>.& ^JJf rT*<£ 1 0"^ 

Tb the Ckriflian Read e r. 

AL L Books of worth relating to Chriftian 
Religion,after thatBook of books > w a 
6iOTyivrofThe holy Scriptures,arebutCon- 
duit-pipesto conveigh unto particular ules thole 
moft pretious Truths which are in general com- 
priled in them- as a full Ciftern fupplyed imme- 
diately out of the One,True, Living Fountain of 
all illiveningTruth,the Onely,\ 7 ery 5 LivingGod. 
The higheft end of Scripture-bred Faith, in refe- 
rence to Believers, is the Salvation of their Souls- 
yet doth this Honey-comb likewife drop much 
fweetnefs unto them whilft they are in the body ; 
for it giveth them reft in perplexities/ecurity in 
dangers,advantage in lofles^abundance in wants, 
comfort in troubles,ftability in changes,content 
and quietnefs in all,even the moft diftra&ed con- 
ditions, enabling them to live continually upon 
that nv Ss that All-mighty ,All-fufficient God, 
who is ever flowing out in the oil of gladnefs to 
thole whole hearts are kept up ? open and empty, 
through Faith to receive of hisfulnels. Two 
fpecial Breftsof Confolationthe Lord afforded* 
to Believers, that they may by Faith fuck fweet- 
eft comfort from them^that is to lay Special Pro- 
miles , and Ipecial Providence, both which arc 
fo advantagioufly drawn out , and held out to 

A i Be- 

7> the Chrifiun Reader 

believers in the two enfuing T rafts compiled 
by that man of Name Mr« Obadiah Sedg- 
wick, according to the wifdomand skill in the 
work of the Minrftery given to him, that he 
who fhall ftay the Reader with any long Pre- 
face from a prefent reaping thefruic of the la- 
bours of fuch an Author, on fuch a Subjeft, 
muft needs put himfelf upon an Apology \ 
which we chufe rather not to need, then to make 
ufe of in this cafe.And therefore Chriftian Rea- 
der we fhall oncly allure thee, that thefc. two 
Trafts upon Tfal. 2$. and Mat. 10. 29. are the 
genuine labours of the Reverend Author now 
with God -the care of whofeManufcripts is by 
his Witt committed to us: We leave the folio wing 
Trafts to thy ftudy, and thy ftudy to Gods ble£ 
fing, with heartieft defire , that through Gods 
blefling on thy ftudies , the Authors ends of 
thefe his labours may be attained in thee, which 
we.are. moll allured were T/^oo^and Gods glory. 
We would be glad in exchange for what is now 
by us handed to thee, to receive from chee hearty 

prayers for 


March a£. itf 58'.. The unworthy fervants of the 

Lord JESUS, 

Huwfrj Chambirs. 
Simeon AJbe. 
JLdmmd Ca/amj , 
Aiwiram Bj$tid». 

A Table of the Contents. 

V E R S E. I. 

THE occafi«ftofthe r Pfalm^.z The Lord Jehovah is the 
Shepherd of his people ^.3 How the Title of Shepherd maj 
be taken, and the properties of a good Shepherd p.4. How we 
may kno'w that God is our fhepherd p.9. The happinefs of t ho ft 
who find the Lord to he their fhephc rd p. 1 3 . CoHnfelto the pwp 
p. IT- 

Thr people of God (hall not want, they are cared and well 
provided for 18 In whatfenfe this is to be underftood 18 Ho*? 
far this after tion extends , whether to foul and body 1Z The An- 
tics required of the people of Gods pafture 27 The evil inzonve- 
niences of not trusting on the Lord 31 And the good that wiU 
come by trufting on God for the (upfly of our wants 32 Means f« 
enable us to truft 37. 

Verse. II. 

God doth provide enough for his people 46 What, and When 
it is enough 46 Why the Lord provides enough for his people t 
neither too much nor too little 48 The qualities that will make 
us contented 54 (gracious con ft derations adjuvant to the fame 
end 57 Advice to thofe to whomGoa* gives enough 6i* 

God doth provide the beft of conditions for his people 62 0( 
what eftate and condition this is averred 63 In what rcfpetl 
their condition for temporals is beft 6$ Why doth God pre* 
vide the beft for his people 72 Hjw can their eft ate be 
best which is fo driven by afflitlions and (ufftrings 75 Eviien - 
tcs of mf judging our condition "7 Motives to efteem our con- 
dition beft 82 Means to enable us foto judg of them 84. 

God doth accord the hearts and conditions of his people to- 

The Co 


gerficr 91 what this quiet and comfort able ^oelUpleajednejswitk 
our temporal condition is pi How far fort hGod doth give this unto 
hi* people 9^ why god doth give unto his people aVeell-pleafednefs 
with their condition 95 The grtatnefs of the fin to be discontent- 
ed with our condition 97 The caufes of it 99 The dangers of 
it 102 The helps and remedies of it 106 ^Motives not to con* 
tent our /elves with earthly things 109 

V I R s E III. 

Temporal mercies are not the Summa Totalis of all that God 
beftows on his fervants 1 1 1 tAdvicejiot to account our condi* 
ttons compltte in temporal enjoyments 112. 

God only is the author of all our blcflings, Temporal or Spi- 
ritual 1 1 2 The proud error of the Pelagians confuted 113. 
God doth comfortably revive,raife up,refre(hor cherifti the lan- 
guifhing & opprefledfouls of his fervantsi 1 $what are the [eve- 
T *l wayes therein the foul of aConvertedChriftian may be opprefm 
fed and made to droop 115 The fpecial methods of Gods reftoring or 
refrejhittgfuch a foul with comfort i\j why the Lord doth re- 
fiore comfort unto the fouls of his fervants 119 The advanta- 
ges of being truly holy 1 20 What things hinder the raifing of 
our languifhing fouls 1 24. 

Even converted and reftored perfons need a God to lead 
them 1 27 The matter or nature of Gods leading his people 1 27 
The manner how he leads his people I 29 The reafons why his 
people need his leading 132 what we muft do if we would fol- 
low god 1 40 How Vce mud follow our leader 1 42. 

God leadeth his people in the paths of rightcoufnefs 144 
What the paths of right eoufnefs are 145 W hat it is to be led in 
thofe paths 1 47 Why God leadeth his people in righteous paths, 
and caufeth them to walkjn them 147 The properties of righ- 
teous paths i%\ The qualifications of thofe per fens who do rca'\ 
%n paths of right eoufnefs 1 54 what a man muft doe to walk, in 
paths of right eoufnefs 1 5 7 How we Jhould order our fiefs in tht 
paths of right eoufnefs i6r>. 

V E R S I IV. 

G^eat calamities and terrible dangers, even the fhadows of 
death may befal the people of God 166 why the people of God 
are expofable to fuch dangers 167 None ought to taJ^efcandaJ at 
thefe dangers fo as to keep iff or fall off from paths of right eouf- 

The Contbn TS. 

nefs 172 what to be f urni/hed Voitkat before dangers MM 177. 
jf *W r* do under dingers and trouble J TJQ. 

Righteous perfons arc fearlefs under the greateft dangers 180 
Arguments to demonfirate the truth of the affertion I £2 Reaf$nt 
tf thu f ear leff nefs 1 84 The danger in g iving way to exorbitant 
fears 18S what ^e may do to prevent overwhelming fears in 
times of dinger 191. 

God is prefent with his peoplejin all their dangers and trou- 
bles , and that pretence ef his is the ground of their confi- 
dence 196 ff hat this pre fence of God with hi* people in their 
dingers is 197 Comforts from Gods prefence to righteous per- 
fons, what ever their dangers be 20 1 How to order our feives 
fo that we may find God prefent with us in our greatefi dan- 
gers 206 

The word of God is of fingular comfort to the people of 
God in their greateft diftrefTes 214 How it appears th At the 
Word is of that fingular comfort indijfrejfe 217 what is to be 
done that we may find the Word our comfort and fl ay in the times 
of our diflre(fes 220 

Even Gods a ffl 1 dions afford caufeof much comfort to Gods 
people 222 H>*> we are t$ demean our feives under afflitlions 
that they may afford comfort to hs 226 How we may k«9w whe- 
ther the Rodwitt prove a comfort 223 

Gods watchful protection over his people is a ground of fin- 
gular comfort to them 232 what Divine protection is 233 
Howie may yield comfort to the people of God 235 Motives 
totruft on the Lord for hts protetlion in times of greatefi dan- 
ger 240 

Gods corrective Staff of the adverfaries of his people af- 
fords caufe of comfort unto them 243 How far forth and in 
What refpetls Gods judgments on the adverfaries of his ptople 
may afford them matter of comfort 245 When judgments on 
wicked men are neer at hand 250 

Verse V. 

It is a fit duty with frequent gratefulnefle to acknowledge all 
the mercies aid bleflTings which God hath conferred upon us 
254 Four Circumftances concur to the exact acknowledgment 
of mercie ',255 It is a comely thing to fee a man blejftag of GV, 
and the reafons of if 256 WoM it x n be thankful for mer- 
cies 261 God 

The Contents. 

God doth confer on fomc of his people fometimes a large 
portion and variety ©f outward bleffings 262 Reafons why he 
doth ft 263 How we are to ufe th* bounty and liberality of God, 
with reference to Godfiur felves and Others 26$ The Wajes by 
Vrhicb Gods outward bltffmgs are abufed 270 and the great fin 
and danger thereof 273 

Notwithftanding all the evil diftaftes, and devices, and pradi- 
fes of evil men , God will plentifully blefs his people 277 
Reafons of it 2%o The folly of tbofe who are enemies to Gods 
people 28 1 Encouragements to the people */ God to trufi on him 
in the midft of all their enemies 282 and to Wall^ carefully 
with God 284 

Verse VI. 

Spiritual goodneffs and mercy (hall follow the people of 
God all the dayes of their life 286 GodfotloVves his people with 
Divine gracioufneffe^ Divine Graces t Divine comforts 287 
Why God doth thus follow his people in refpetl of fpirituals 288 
If God hath begun with you in fpiritual favours^ you may 
thence be confident he Will ftiH follow you in this goodneffe and 
mercy 291 Objeclions anfwered again fi our own Wcakneffe and 
Corruptions^ and Temptations from without 29Z 

Temporal mercy and goodnefs (hall follow the people of 
God all the dayes of their life 294 Arguments to evince this 
truth 296 Reigning infidelity and dislruft of Gods goodneffe 
and mercy for the future, how known 302 The caufes of this 
diftruft 306 After what manner we mitft eppofe them 311 
What Motives fo to do 314 The manner hew we muft trufi on 
God for his perpetual mercy 320 The motives to excite us 324 
The means to enable us 32$ The refold ion and ♦ removal of 
fome grounds which do refirain or diflurb our beauts from a per- 
petual trufiingon God 316 
The Church of God isthehoufeof God 338 
We muft joyn our felves for ever to the publtck worftvp and 
fervice of God 339 Reafons of it 340 Thofe that withdraw from 
the publicly places of Gods wcr/bip reproved 341 The excellency 
of publkk. Ordinances, and the advantages of publicly Af- 
femblies 342 

Singular mercies muft lead us on to Singular Duties 344. 



,Upon the 2$d. 


r sal. 23. 1. 

The Lord is my Shepherd, I jhall 
not want. 

Hethcr the whole book of Tfaims, were 
penned by David, as S. Aufiin conje- 
ctures- or rather, fome by David, fome 
by Afapb, fome by Mojes, fome by JV 
/cwo», as Eufebitu, Atloanafim, HUU~ 
rj and Hierom conjecture, it is none- 
ceflity to argue •, fure we are that they 
are all of them dictated by the Ho/j- 
Ghcft , and then it matters not much whofe pen wrote 

Many of them ( qucftionlefs) ow thcmfclvcs to D*vid, of 
which (as Athtntfitu and others well obfcrvc) fome arc onely 

B *4r- 

the Lord is my Shepherd, &c. 

narrator) , others are monitory, others are prophetical or predi- 
&ory, others are petit ion al or precatory, others are laudatory 
or eucharifiical^ others are deprecatory, others are confolatory 9 
andmoftof them are mixt, fometimes with petition and de- 
precation, fometimes with petition and praife • folweetlydi- 
verfe is the Spirit of God in this book of Pfalmes. 

This Pfalm (which by Gods grace and afllftance) I intend 
to go through, is a lingular Pfalm of David, as you may read 
in the Title nn S TD'O M.Kvtr le David k Song or Pfalm of 
"David. It is partly 

Euchariftical, praifing for blefiings received. Every mer- 
cy (bould be anfwered with a harmony of thanks. 

'Prophetical, alluring himfelf (and under that the whole 

Church) of the perpetuity and continuation of mercies : The 

people of God are like a golden phrafe in a parenthefis, fhut ia 

both wayes with mercies. 

The eccafi n ^ IC isa ' itc ' c c *nvafedby Writers, whenand upon whatu* 

of the Pfalm. ca f ton ^ avi ^ penned this Pfalm ? 

Sol.i. Seme do conjecture that he penned it upon that fa- 
vour -which Achifh King of Gath Jbewed unto him when he refu- 
ged him with the city of Ziklag upon his flight and efcape from 
Saul. Upon the experience of which goodnefs from God 9 
he wrote this comfortable Pfalm. 

2. Others rather, and the moft that I have ken, imagine it 
to be written by David at that time when God had given him 

*peJfeffion of the Kingdom, and much profperity and reft. In the 
which goodnefs of God he doth delight himfelf, and from 
much experience concludes by faith, an aflfurance of Gods con- 
ftant and everlafting providence over him. 

3. Others yet go a ftranger way, imagining David here to 
blefr God for Chrift , his onely (hepherd , and who fed him 
with all forts of blefiings, fpiritual and temporal. 

The conjectures are feveral, for my part I rather encline to 
the middle. 
Xhc Parts of it. The Pfalm it felf contains in it three parts, 

1. A general proportion of Gods providence aiad good- 
nefs,!/. 1. 

2. A particular expofuion of it, and that by two Allegories 

Oj fimilitudes : One of a Shepherds \ care cxpreffed in 

- - ... _ ^ 

The Lord is my shcpbrrd,Scc. 

the four firft verfes of the Pfalm. 

Another of an Hoft or conrttow friend mod liberally and 
exadly entertaining his gueft in verfe 5. 

3. A bJievhg conclufim in the laft verfe • that this bountiful 
goodnefs (hall be a continual goodnefs. Surely gooar,e/s and 
mercy {hall follow me all the dajes of my life. 

Inthefirftofthefe you have again obfervable, two things, 

1. Afpecial relation [The Lordis my Sh(pherd.~\ 

2. A fpecial j/Amcw [_I fkall not wantj] 

The Lord is my Shfpherd'J Jehovah is my (hepherd. He 
who is a moft perfed Eflence of himfelf. He who gives and The ^ nceof 
conferves things in their eiTence and being. He, laitly,who thcvvor s 
is moft faithful, true, fure, ftedfaft in his pi:omifes, who gives 
reallity or being unto them. 

This Jehovah ( faith DAvid here, both for himfelf and all 
the Church) is my Shepherd. 

This name Jehovah, is as I may (o fpeak, the moft eminent 
of all the names of Cod, it carries that in it which is all in all 
and as it were above all ; Fiz, the verity or fidelity of God, 
making good all his goodnefs to us. The Hebrewcs make it to 
be an invariable and ineffable name, and it hath no pronouns 
affixed unto it, nor doth it admit any demonftrating article be- 
fore it, and it wants the number of multitude, it is a name fin- 
gular and proper to God. 

And David addes (this Jehovah is my Shepherd) The Vul- 
gar Edition renders it thus, regit me govcrnes me or rules me, 
which is too loofe and general. The Septuagint better , 
woilAtv* \n , pafcit me, feeds me. The Hebrew goes rather 
to the participle of the prefent tenfe Jehovah pafc ens me, which 
we render^my (hepherd, or feeding of me. 

I will not infill: any longer on the Grammar of the text; the 
Proportion is this, 

That the Lord Jehovah himfelf is the P after or Shepherd tj 'his D. 

ftrvants. The Lord Jc- 

There is fcarce any one Metaphor in all the Scriptures hov?n himfelf 
through which God doth feem more delightfully to exprefs^ h ^[ r ^ 
himfelf then this of a fhepherd, fee at your lcifure, Efa.^o. 1 1 . fenum. 
£«t}4.23. Zuch.iiq. Pf.$o.i t Give ear Shepherd of Jf- 

B 2 For 

The Lord is my Shepherd, &c. 

For the opening of this afiertion, know 

The Tide o£ i. That the title of Shepherd may be taken two wayesin 

fliephcrd, taken Scripture. 

Properly. ¥ improperly, Co it notes a particular calling or condition of 

life, which any perfon hath in looking to, caring for and watch- 
ing over ft} ecp,thofe the moft fimple, gentle, fruitful, innocent 
©f all irrational creatures. Thus David at firft was a (hep- 
herd, and fofepbs brethren were ftiepherdf, and facob. 

Improperly. Secondly, It is taken improperly, when the moral parts of a 

fhepherd arc applied to any. Thus alfo in Scripture is it ap« 

Applied to Sometimes to Gods Deputies -, who are of two forts, either 

Gods Deputies fuch as in office (hould look to the bodies of men, as Kings and 

M*gifcaccs Princes, whom God calls (hepherds j thus Cym is (tiled a (hep- 
herd, Thou Art my fhepherd, -E/^.44.28. and David, VMS fct 
up to be a [bepher d to feed bu people in facob, and his inherit una 
in Ifrael , 2 Chron.28.4. 
. .„ Or fuch whofe care is converfant about thefottts of men •, thus 

Mmiiters. thc minifters of God are ftiIed ftepherds in £^.34. they 

are in that one Chapter thirteen times called fit. See alfo 
fer* 3. 1 5.& 23 .^.Peter hath that charge of a fhepherd to feed the 
flacky thrice put upon him by Chrift, ^.21,15. andheearneft- 
ly preflfeth it on all Mmifters to feed the flocfyf God, r Pet. 5. 2. 
GoA Hmfelf. Sometime to God himfelf, as here in this Scripture and many 
.other above mentioned. 

2. This title of (hephcrd is to be applied to Codonelyina 
right fenfe, not that he doth every thing which every fhepherd 
Who hath a u doth, (for there are (hepherds of whom the Prophet fpeaks 
che properties tnaC fad themfelves with the /beep and clothe them/elves with 
of a jood (hep- tht wool ttnd regard not the' flick \ fee their defcription and 
herd. their judgmc.it too in £^34 ) but becaufehehath all thofe 

properties which a good fhepherd hath. 
Ei^ht proper- lQ Scripture I fi n<i chcfe properties of a goad (hep- 
tics, herd, 

Science. 1. One is Science : / am the good fhepherd^ and knw n.j 

fheep, faith Chrift ^.10.14- The fhepherd, muft have a double 
knowledge of fheep. 0*e,is a dijti»gmjbing knowledge, by 
which he muft difcern (heep from goats,and his own (heepfrom 

the flocks of others. 


The Lord is my Shepherd, &C. 

Another is, a skilful knowledge by which he muft under- 
ftand how to handle them or deal with them. In both thefe re- 
fpeds God is a Shepherd : for he knows who are his and fepa • 
rates them from all the world, not only in the work ofSleclton , 
but alfo in that of Vocation, and Sanclification • and there is 
none who knows better how to order and handle his people then 
He, for he is the God of all Wifdom % and the Father of all Mer- 
cies \ He can skilfully guide and rule them. 

2. A fecond is Trovidence. The good (hepherd provideth Provider:?, 
pafture and water for the flieep , and alwayes that which is 
wholefcme y left the (heep rot and die : as he is not negligent W holefome 
that the (heep want feeding, fo he is diligent that they have Pafture. 
wholfome feeding. Such a fhepherd is the Lord over his peo- 
ple, Ex,e ki 3 4. 13 / KM feed them upon the mount aines of Jjrael 
by the rivers. And V. 1 4. / will feed them in a good pa/lure, and 
upon the high mountains of I frael fhall their folds be. The beft 
feeding for the (heep is on the mountains, and the bed drinking 
for the fheep is at the running River : Marfliie Valleys and dir- 
ty puddles quickly rot them. 

The Lord will provide fufficient pafture , and the beft too ; Sufficient Pa- 
Mountains and Rivers are fufficient and beft. Cod will feed^ u «- 
his people with the moft facred Ordinances, pureft Truths, and 
divinel\ Comforts, with found Do&rine, finccre Milk, whole- 
fome Words. 

3. A third is Guidance . The good (hepherd goes in and out Giidir.cc. 
before his flock ; the (heep are iimple things, apt to wander a- 

way and to err, and therefore the (hepherd guides them by his 
Whittle, by his Crook, by his Dog,smd fometunes leads the way 
himfelf: Such a (hepherd is God to his people. Heftiewes 
them the way in which they (houid go, This 'u the way , \v.?/£ 
in it : and directs their pathes and leads them by his counfel,by 
his Spirit, by his Word, by his Rod. He doth not lea ve them 
to the mifguidance of fin or Satan, or the World, or their own 
hearts, but by his mighty Spirit both layes out their way, and 
leads them therein too • He is their God and Guide to 

4. A fourth is Vigilance. The (heep are weaponlefs, weak ^VJjttinor 
inarmed creatures and they have many and ftrong enemies , 

as the Lbnard jhe Wolf, and the Dog, they may cfefoons be- 

The Lord is my Shepherd, &c. 

come a prey unto any of thefe, if the fhepherd doth not watch, 
and hearken, and look unto them. faccb watched night and 
day,(7f«.3 1.40. Suth a Shepherd is God over his people^ eje 
never over them, 1 Pet. 3.12. And, he that keepeth 1 fracl doth 
neither (lumber nor pep, Pfal.121.4. He is the pillar of fire ^ 
he is at hand and near, hehathaconftant care and regard unto 
themleaft any evil befaltbem, Pjal.91 .10. & 121. 7. or that 
they run into any evil. 

Defence, 5- ^° which as a part may be added 'Defence. Hence it is 

that the fhepherd hath his Fold to keep the fheep in the night, 
and his Staffs which is for defence as well as reftraint - 9 and his 
Dog to give notice of danger in the day : And you read how 
David refcued his (beep out of the mtuth of the Lion, and out of 
the paft of the Hear. In this regard alfo is the Lord a fhepherd 
to his peop!e,he is the defence of his people,therefore inScripture 
called the Shield and Buckjer, the ftreng Tower , a Roc^ muni" 
lions of Roc\s. He is my defence, faith David y Pfal.59 9. The 
Prophet Zachary calls him a wall of fire round about hit peopU t 
Zaeh.2.5. Not a wall of earth or ftone,that will mould'er away, 
and this may be beaten down •, but who will fee upon a wall of 
fire ? indeed through a few flicks of fire fome may haply ven* 
ture, but through a wall of fire none can. The Eternal God is 
thy refftge x and underneath are the Ever I a [ling armes, Deut. 
33.27. The Church hath an eternal God, and that God hath 
evcrlafting armes. Arms import his ftrength, and Everlafting 
import the perpetuity of his defending and upholding care. Tis 
true that the Church hath many enemies, and as the fheep ard 
too weak for the Lion and Bear , fo is the Church for her ene- 
mies, but then the fhepherd is firong and can refcue and deliver. 
Therefore ye read in £zek. 34 14. that as God would feed his 
people in a good pafture, fo he would have a care alfo that they 
might lye down in a good fold : not only mercy but cuftody is 

Coverture. 6. The good fhepherd does not only provide Pafture but 

Coverture alfo for the fheep : He hath his {hadj places from 
the Sun, and retiring places from the Stormes, torefrefh, as 
well as to Flefh the fheep. Even fuch a fhepherd is the Lord 
to his people; the Lord is thj peeper , the Lord is thy /bade 
r.pon t-.j right hand, faith David, Pfal.121.5. He is not only 

a God 

The Lord is mj Shepherd, cxc 

a God of Graces, but alfo of Confolations unco them. He 
(hade? them with many teftimonics of his love, and fo gives 
reft to their fouls. 

7. A feventh property of a good (hepherd, is, Tender Pru- Tender Pru- 
dence : For in a flock of (heep there is great dive: fit;, onedencc, 
part may be ftrong /beep, and chey are driven ; another part 

may be Weakjambs, and they are fometimes carried by the (hep- 
herd. Some of the (heep may be found and well , others may 
be difeafed-, fome keep in better , others are more apt to (tray. 
Now the good (hepherd prudently orders them all, he fends 
his dog after the wandring fheep, if the whiftle fetcheth it not 
in • and he feparates the found from the unfound , taking care 
to heal them, &c. After this manner doth God deal with his 
people who are of feveral ages, abilities and difpofitions as it 
were. Weah^ and beginning, and tender Cbriftians he gently 
leads, and as ic were , carries them in his bofome, Ifa.40. 1 1 . 
Straying Chriflians , he calls upon them by his Voice in the 
Word, which if it ferves not, he purfues them by his Rod, by 
afflictions. Difeafed ani fallen £hri(lians\\z heals by his Spi- 
rit ^ and if their falls be fcandalous, it is his will theybefepa- 
rated a while from the reft of the Flock by Excommunication , 
to prevent infection of others , and to work recovery in 

8. Laftly, Diligence and care leaft any one fheep be loft and Diligence. 
perifh. The good (hepherd would not lofe any of the leaft of 

all the flock. Jn this regard alfo is God the (hepherd of his 
people, whofe care extends even to an immortal perfeverance 
of every one of his people/ hat none ofthemfh.dl be loft. None 
of them (hall perifh, and therefore gives them not only Ante- 
cedent and preventing, but Subfequent, and affifting, and efta- 
blifhing grace. 

And thus ye have the Analogies 'twixtGod and a fhepherd. 
Yet I muft premife two things before I come to the Applicati- 

1. That God is P after fummusylhz chief Shepherd : if any 
be (hepherds they are but deputed, therefore let them take heed 
how they deal with the flock. 

2. ThatGodiswof <<>* Hireling who feeds the flock of ano- 
ther, but a (hepherd who feeds his own flock. 


8 Iht Lordis my Shepherd, &c. 

Vfe r. TherearefeveralUfestobemadeof this. The firft (hall be 

Information, for information. Is the Lord Jehovah the fliepherd of his 

people ? 
WUkcd men i. That Vcicksd men % t\iok evil Beafts (as the Scripture ftiles 
arc madly foo- them) are madly foolijb. *Tis true, they long to be worryingof 
llfll ' the flieep, and to be fleecing and fcattering of them,and to fuck 

the blood of them. And it is true again, that the (beep are 
unarmed, and weak of themfelves : What can a poor flieep do 
againft a ftrong Lion, or a fubtil Wolf f But then their Redee- 
mer is mighty , the Lord himfelf is the (hepherd of his flock : 
are you able to deal with the Almighty God? are je fironger 
then he ? are you mad ? will you never ceafe to wrong that 
flock whichGod hath gathered in mercy,keeps with Iove,watch- 
eth over with power 9 and hath profefled that he Veho toucheth 
them toucheth tke apple of his eje? will ye be found fighters a- 
gai»(t God } 
The jodly are 2. That good people they arc interejfedinthe bighefl affeftion 
Saterefffdin the an Ag re4te fi care of Qcd. This word Shepherd, doth compre- 
aftcction and hendin it <?wtf f w fietati*,amoris^ & (uavitatu Attic e dinem & 
carco 0. j ii ic ' ttU( ii n u affetlvm. There is Love in it, Pity in it, Provi- 
dence in it,Tendernefs in ic j all kind of care,of defence, of good 
in it. 
Tbeyaretob: 3. That good people are to be better efteemed then others ; 
better cftccmed They are the (heep of Gods pafture •, and {heep you know are 
then others. a ft a pj e commodity, the whole land is the better for them. Of 
- all people godly people are the beft, and even the worft are the 
better for them, and beholding to them. Though we deride 
the (heep for fillinefs, yet we are beholding to the (heep for our 
clothing. Wicked men deride holy perfons for their fimplici- 
ty, but it is for their fakes that wicked men live at all, and enjoy 
any outward blelling. 

But I fhall pafs from this life unto another more preffing the 

conference ^ viz» 

Vje 2. Doth T>xv\d % though in his Kingdom, though abounding \ 

though ftrengthned on all (ides, yet raife up his heart above all 

T . b with this, that the Lord u hit Jbepherd'. This was it which he 

reUtiorTGod* accounted above all, &c. Then let us carefully try in what r*- 

ftands to us, lotion Gcdftands to w % or rve to him : Can we fay with David, 

*nd we to hi®. The Lord is mj [hepherd, that we arc the flieepof his pafture. 


Ver. i . The Lord is my Shepherd, ice. 9 

Premifc a few things with me. Five things 

3. Alltht cattel in the world are not fheep : There are fubcil Premifed. 
Foxes,and there arc raveningWolves^and there are fierce Dog*, £| 3rc noc 
and there are filthy Swine and Goats. Satan hath his herd, as' * Cp * 
God hath his flock; the (beep of God are called a little Muck, in 
comparifon of the reft of people, very little. 

2. If the Lord be not thy fhepherd^h, haft miferable and for- Th ^ ., 
lorn art thou ! What wilt thou do ? on whom doft thou rely? rableifGod be 
how canft thou expect any mercy from him? he is none of thy no: chy fheep- 
(hepherd j or defence from him? he is none of thy (hepherd hcr -'- 


3. Tott maj deceive your ft Ives : Perhaps you have but fieeps You mi T dc * 
f/of^,but are noc (beep: You feem to be the peopleof God, C:ivc y° ur ' elvc$ 
come and flock together to hear his Voice, but obey him not: 

look and fpeak gravely and demurely, but your hearts are rot- 
ten, full of all hypocrifie and filthincfs, &c. 

Or perhaps becaufe you find (ome refemblances in you of 
the fheep, that you are harmelefs, live quietly, do no body a~ 
ny wrong, therefore you conclude that you are (heep. Why ? 
Even a loft {heep may be this. Negatives in religion are like 
negatives in Law, of no force. 

4. Do you not know that */ 700^*0* /2tf*p,thatatchelaftdaylf you be noc 
you W\\\be ranged among goats} and you (hall be for everex- |J ' C< P)' 0U «i; be 
communicated from the prefence of the Lord ? jJJJ™ •™M 

5. You can inferno cm fort from God unlefshe be your fhtp. ^ comfort 
herd. T>avid having groundedly affirmed, The Lord is my can he interred 
(hepherd, then concludes, I (hall not want : All the excellen- frcm God, oa> 
cy and goodnefs in God is of no comfort to thee, if the Lord be f ls ? c ^f cur 
r.ot thy (hepherd. ihc ? he:d ' 

Objett. But how may we know that the Lord is our (hep-ib* mtJ wc 

herd? knowchv.Goi 

Sol. To refolve this, let us fee what are the choice properties isour fofplurd 
cf/heep^ni by thefe we may judg whether the Lord be our (hep- 7 '-^ Pl °P { ^ 
herd. tt$ lccp * 

1. One property in them (which the Scripture doth ex preis ) Ob:dicnct. 
is obedience. This Chrift himfelf delivers in 'joh.i 0.4. Wbeo 
he putteth forth his (heep, he goeth before them, ar.d the flytcp fol- 
low him y for the j know hid Voice. The property of the (hepherd 
is to go before the fheep, to (hew thertubc way and path; and 

C the 

10 The Lord is my Shep herd y &c. Ver.i.: 

the property of the fheep is to know the Voice of theihepherd, 
and to foliow him. The Lord as a fhepherd unto us goeth be- 
fore us, and (hews unto us the paths of Righteoufnefs, and the 
wayes of Salvation ♦, he faith, This is the ^ay^wall^ in it. And 
if we be his fheep, we will not onely credit his rules and directi- 
ons, but we will obey his voice, walk in thofe holy and heaven- 
ly paths. Now try your felves whether there is in you that obe- 
diential refped unto God, asthereisirtthefheep to the voice 
of the fhepherd. 

i. The fheep readily follow the fhepherd : There is not fucfi 
ado with them, but as foon as he whittles or calls they are apt 
to come in. 

2. Let the fhepherd direct or lead them up to the moun- 
tains , or down to the valleys , tbej are ready fiill to fallow 

3. whatfoeverthefeafonbe \ whether Summer or Winter , 
fair or foul s they fttllknow the voice of the fhepherd, and fol- 
low him. Why, is it thus with us } Brethren I I grant unto 

* you in fome fenfe you do know the voice of the fhepherd , you 
hear him often fpeaking unto you, but fheep follow the fhep- 
herd. Why now ? do you follow the leading voice of God > 
What do you ? There is the voice of Satan , and there is the 
voice of the World, and there is the voice of your own Luftsand 
Hearts • whofe voxe do you follow ? The voice of thy g-eat 
; fhepherd is, Repent ^ and Believe • His voice is, w^k before me 
\*nd be thou per feci : His voice is, Redeem the time, do good, &c. 
Do you obey this voice of God ? do you tread . as it were, in 
his fteps, and walk in his paths > can it be faid of you as it was 
ofDawV,Pfal.40.8. I delight to do thy yviU, O mj God , yea, 
thy Law is within my heart. Or, ^soiCornclim^ Ad, 1 0.3$, 
We are all prefent bffore Cjod to htar all things that are com* 
manded thee of God. We can fay, That we are all here prefent s 
but God be merciful unto us r we cannot fay, That we are there • 
fore prefent to hear all things commanded of God : Perhaps 
we come to hear a voice, but not to obey the voice of God. But 
brethren 1 miftake not your felves, if you care not for the gui- 
dance of God • though he leads you by the voice of his Word, 
and of his Minifters,and of his Spirit, yet you will follow your 
owa wayes, be, live, do what you lift: alas for you I you 

arc : 

'Vcr.i . The Lord is my Shcphcrd y Scc. 1 1 

are ftubborn and rebellious creatures, you are far from the pro- 
pertieoffheep which know the voice of the (hepherd and fol- 
low it. 

2. Another property of (heep is Meeknefs and Patience : Miner's and 
Of all the irrational Creatures in the world, a fheep is one of PaUcncc. 
themeekeftandpatienteft. Come near to a Dog and he will 
bark, defeat the Wolf and he will howl,&c. but the Sheep qui- 
etly pafTeth over all • give him rich or lean pafture , he feeds 
on both quietly •, Smooth or ftrikehim, he bears all-, yea, kill 
him, and cut the throat of him he ftirs little. And therefore 
the Prophet exprelTeth the wonderful patience of Chrift by this 
of a (heep, Ifa.$ 3 .7* He Was eppreffed and he was afflitled , and 
yet he opened not his mouth, he is brought as a lamb to the fljugh- 
ter, and as a jh<cp bifore htr foearer is dtimbfo he openeth net his 
mouth. Now what is the meeknefs and patience of our natures ? 
If you rage like Lions, roar like Bears, fnarle like Dogs, you are 
not (beep: Ifrevilings, difgraces, reproaches, injuries, loiTe* 
befal us, how can we bear them ? Bear them we muir, but with 
what quietnefle, with what felf-denial ! When men curfe, can 
weblelTe? when they douseri^caRwedo them good? can 
we humbly wear good things, or quietly bear evil things ? Or 
do we not turne every condition into fin , wrinkle it all over 
with impatience and difcontent ? When we are on the Moun- 
tains, then feeding in the Valleys pleafeth us ; and when in the 
Valleys, O then the Mountains are pleafanteft. Yea, and in 
point of injury, it is not with us as with the (heep, but as with 
the Afle , if we be ft ricken we kick prefently j we will do no 
right, and we will bear no wrong. 

3 . A third property of lheep is Vfefulnefs : It is the mod u; c 
ferviceable creature in the world. Serviceable to God, for it was 
moftufed in Sacrifices of all forts: Serviceable to man, the 
milk of (heep ferviceable, the flefhof (heep ferviceabie, the 
fleece of the (heep ferviceable, all about it and of it is ufeful. 
Thus is it with us ,if we be the fheep ofGod and he be our Shep- 
herd : we are not barren and unprofitable. See how the 
Church or people of God are defcribed by Solomon, Cant. 4.:. 
Lihj a jlock^of pjeep that are even fiom, &c. whereof every qh$ 
beareth twins, and none is barren amor.g thsm. And David de- 
fcribesthem, Pfal.1.3. To be like th7tree planed by the Rivers 

C 2 of 

I * The Lord is my Shepherd, &c. Ver. t. 

of waters, that bringeth forth his fruit in his feafon. And Chrift 
defcnbes chem to be like thejr<W houfbolder 9 who brings out of 
his ft ore new and old* Now refled on your felves, areyounot 
rather nnfav our y fait that is goad for nothing ? or like carri- 
on which infc&s and poyfons ? Why ? wherein doth your ufe- 
fiilnefsand proft table nefs appear? wherein is the Lord bettered 
by you? how do you live to his glory? what one foul is the 
better for thee ? Thou haft a family, wife, children, fervants , 
people, doft thou burn amongft them as a candle ? do they par- 
take of any heavenly counfel ? juft reproof ? feafonable encou- 
ragements, &c ? The barren Chriftianis his own Grave, Sa- 
tans Lodge, Religions Scorn, and the Wonder amongft men} 
for he is but a Ghoft walking amongft the living. 

&nky.. 4. A fourth property of the fheep is Vnity and Peaceable- 

nefs. Where do ye fee (beep to fight one with another, to de - 
vour one another ? they fold together, go out together , feed 
together, and lye down together. 

Therefore it is faid, That as there is,?** fcepherd 3 fo there is 
cnefbeepfold,J*h 10.16, &c. By this, faith Chrift, fhall all mea 
know that ye are my Difciples if ye love one another, Joh.i 3 3 5, 
And then where (hall we almoft find a fheep? What (hall I 

In Judgment, fay ? There is one god, there is one Mediator, there is one Bap- 
tifm, there is one Faith, but one Shepherd and Lord : O that I 
could fay, That all who profeffe themfelves fheep were one 

XnAfc&ion. I befeech Evodfas, and Ibefeech Syntlchc, that they be of the 
fame mind in the ZrW, Phil. 4 2. Where is this Vnity in judg~ 
ment> If there be any eonfolat ion in Chrift, if any comfort of 
hve y if any fellow jhip of 'the Spirit , if any bowels and mercies ,^e 
like minded, have the fame love^VhW.2 t,2; Where is this Uni- 
ty in affeelion ? How I pity the divifions, the fcatterings, the 
tearings- what of Pagans? no, of Chriftians ^ "what of titular 
Chriftians? nay of thofe who would be real Chriftians, who 
tear the names, the wayes, yea, the fouls, yea, the everlafting 
eftates each of other. One Table cannot hold them, one fa- 
mily cannot, one Church cannot. If one heaven fhall hold you 
hereafter, why fhall not one (heepfold hold you now ? Well, 
1 fay no more: Thus did not Chrift do,thus did not the Apoftlcs 
of Chrift do;dogs do thus,fhccp do not ufe thus to do^. 
"~ . ~ There,: 

Ver. i • The Lord is mj shepherd, Sec. x $ 

There may be many other allufions which I cannot 7iow~m~" 
fift on, onely thefe are thechiefeft. Try your felves by them, 
if you can upon due examination find that your hearts do obe- 
diently hear the voice of God, can patiently fubmit to God, 
are profitable to Gods glory, canarTe&ionately knit and con- 
fore with the reft of the flock of God becaufe they arefheep, 
you may be confident the Lord God is your (hepherd. 

The next Vft (hall be for comfort and fupport unto thofe ^r 
who upon thefe, or any other good grounds do find that thecomforuo* 
Lord is their (hepherd: the comforts appertaining to them chofc who find 
are many, I (hall but mention fome. the Lord :ob: 

i. In general, thus, you have i. thechiefeft Shepherd to fo r Mr Shepherd. 
yours, even the Lord of heaven and earth, and is the great Go- ^kf ft^^hm! 
vernor of aU things, and is the moft excellent in all glorious h c " to b: CP " 
perfections, to whom none of the gods may be compared. You yours. 
are the choiceft flock of the chiefeft God, 

2. The beft Shepherd. Some fhepherds do abufe, and injure, The b«ft Shep- 
and fcatter the flocks, and the moft exquifite of deputed fhrp- fav-rd. 
herds fail exceedingly in their care, or love, or diligence, for 
they are but men^ but your Shepherd is not like them, he ex- 
cels them all, and will not fail towards you in any one Article' 
or point which the (hepherd is to perform to his flock. 

2. But more particularly thus , you have i . a moft wife A moft ., 
Shepherd t One who is able to difcern the eftateof his flock, Shepherd 
and likewife the particular eftate of every fheep to know what 
isbeft for it, and when to adminifter to it. As God can dif- 
cern between the precious and the Vile, the good and theevil, 
fo can he diftinguifh twixt the ftrong fheep and the weak lambs 
He knows how to confider of age and time, of ftrengthand 
we.iknefs, and how to make ufe of his ftaflPe or of his rod, &c. 

2. You have a moft good Shepherd: You fh ill have paiture A ft A 
enough all your dayes , he will withhold r.othirg that is shcpb ; 
good from you: the (hepherd will provide for his fhe:p, and 
fee that nothing be lacking unto them. They that fejr the 
Lord, pva J l Uck^ no good thing • the Lord i( my Shepherd, I fhall 
not xvtnt, faith D.ivid here : Jehovah is my Shepherd, i.e. He 
who is a moft perfect Bsingof Himfelf, and will accomp!(h all 
Wis promifes, &e. 

J, You have a moft tender Shepherd j One who will not J^JJ* 

14 the Lord ismySbepberd^Scc* Vcr.i. 

rigoroufiy exad upon you, nor be fowre nor ftrange unto yon- 
if he doth fend out his dog after you, it is onely to reduce you 
from wandring, and as foon as ever the fheep looks towards 
the flock he rates him off prefently- you fhall have no more, 
nor no longer afflictions then are needful . 

And as he is tender in corretlicnsjo in his directions, fa cob 
faith of his (beep, The flocks and herds rvith jeng are with me, 
and if men flould over-drive them one day^all the flockj -will 
die, I will drive onfoftly as the cattle flail be able to endure, 
Gen.33.13. Whyl thus icis witrrthe Lord to his fervants : 
He will not overburden them, he layes on them but an eafie 
yoke, and onely things ncceflary, and leads them a gentle pace, 
£fa.qo. 1 1. From one degree of grace to another, ftep by ftep, 
he Hands not upon fulnefs, but faithfulnefs • and if he difcern 
any of his fervants to be more weak, he doth gracieufly take 
them up into his arms, and carries them along with more con- 
izations ^ he gathers the lambs with his arms, and carries thtm 
in his bo j 'erne , Efa.40.71. 
A moft faithf 1 4* ^ 0U ^ ave a mo fi f a ^f u ^ She f herd ; One who will ne-| 
Shepherd. ver intermit his care over you. He doth continue with gentlc- 
refs to look unto you while you are lambs, and ftedfaftly looks 
after you while you are fheep. 

Other (hepherds may either through vanity ftep away ,or 
through neceflity be called home, or through jinjury be pre- 
vailed upon, or through fleepinefs forget their care, but the 
Shepherd of Ifrael is akfayesprefent, and is alwayes vigilant. 
He will never leave his flock, and alfo take care that his flock 
fhall never leave him , none fhall take them out of his 

5. You have the moft loving Shepherd-, He loves you with 
She^hfrd 1 ™^ the higheft degrees of love in all kinds. He is yours in the love 
* of frienaflip, you are in a fort , one with him, (that they may 
be c*f, faith Chriit,d/ thou and I am one). He is yours in the 
love of complacence, you are his He pbzib ah, tht onely people of 
his delight, and in whom his love doth reft, as the Prophet f r eaks. 
He is yours in the Uve of benevolence, He wifheth you that 
good as to none the like : whereas you deferved to be facri- 
hced to his wrath, he gave a lamb, his own Son to become a fa- 
crif ce, thereby to fpare and fave the fouls of all his fheep. He 


Ver. i. The Lord is my Shepherd, & 15 

is yours in the love of beneficence) He doth beftow upoH you 
thegreateft good that may be- moft of your eftatehes infpi- 
rituals -, your graces, your comforts, your paiture, yourrefrefh- 
ings are holy, heavenly, which of all good are the moft excel- 
lent good. 

6.Laftly, you have the moft rtwardful Shepherd • Alas ! when A moft rewsrt j. 
you after feeding a long time in the fullcft and fweeteft paftures f u i shepherd, 
bring forth perhaps but a fleece,and a lamb,a little good, yec 
he lovingly accepts it, and beftowes on you eternal life. Fear 
not little fisc^ faith Chrift,tV i s your Fathers pleafure to give 
j on a Kingdom. 

Thus have you the comforts ,but then I pray you with them ^r 
takealfo feme diretlions. Have youfuch a Shepherd as Jeho- Counfd to the 
vah? then be coun felled in a few particulars, (h -ep. 

1. Be contented with his pafture. If the Shepherd think it R# conurrcd 
good to fhift the (heep from lees to Ices, or from the Vales to „\& his pt« 
the Hills, the (beep are contented to go. fturc. 

God is pleafed to feed us fometimes in the Vallies with much 
plenty, variety, eafc, delight ^and fometimes again he is pleaf- 
ed to drive us to the mountains, to a fhorter, (harper condition 
of life •, if we be his fheep we mud be ftill contented with his 
pafture. He knows that though feeding on the mountains be 
more fhort, yet it may be more wholfom ^ cattel alwayes fed 
int'ie Vales, are either for difeafe, or death: our conditi- 
ons never change but either to prevent , or to recover an 

2. Carefully regard his voice. You cannot make the leafr c ,11 
ftray but his whittle is at your ears, his Word or his Spirit & J^hi s voiced 
beats at your confeiences. 

Now hear his voice, feed onely in his pafrures, wander not 
after any paitures beiides, though they ftem more plentiful or 
more delightful; my meaning is, keep onely in his wayes, ac- 
cording to his directions, and be not withdrawn or wander , 
through any enticements of fin or the world Though other 
paftures feem more plea ant, yet they are full of thorny bufhe^. 
You cannot feed long on them, hut you are cached and Scratch- 
ed, and fhall Inrdly efcape without much lofs of your fleece: 
you may a while delight in a finful way, but your confeiences 
will pay for it,and your graces. You cannot return without a 


1 6 The Lord is my Shepherd, &c. Ver.i« 

great diminution of the one, and a ft range vexation of the o- 
ther : he who will wander for to getfome pleafant evil, rouft 
neceflarily be lefs good and more troubled. And what de- 
fence have you when you hearken not to your (hephcrd , but 
warder? you are the filly (beep alone upon the mountains of 
Gilead. Admit that thou haft more delight, yet what de- 
light can be taken in a delight unprotected and unwar- 
ranted l 
Ohjetl. But I (hall come back again.- 
Sol. But is it not better for thee to be kept in by the (hep- 
herds whittle, then to be brought back in the Lions mouth ? 
to be alone in thefatteft paflure amongft Lions and Wolves, 
and no (hepherd near, here can be nothing but continual fear 
and danger. 
Thrive under 3# Thrive under his feedings. It is true, that for the fub- 
his feeding ftartia j pam of pflu^ a n t h c ft ecp of God fpced alike> but 

yet there are differences in grounds, fome are more rich then o- 
thers. And ifany people in the world have enjoyed a diffe- 
rence, you of London are the people. Ah ! the foyl that you 
fcavelivedinallyourdayes; how thick are the piles of grafs ? 
how full of rivers? how watred with (bowers ? what variety of 
gifts? what excellency of ftudies? what diligence of pains? 
what conftancy of Word and Sacraments ? what golden op- 
portunities publick and private ? 

If God feeds us in a more plentiful pafture, Oh let us take 
' heed we wrong no t his goodnefs by barrerfnefs I that we yield 
no fleece or very poor, but ftrive to grow, not from knowledg 
to pride, and from pride to carelefsnefs, and from carelefsnefs 
to diflblutenefs • but from knowledg to faith , from faith to 
love, from iove to obedience, from one degree of obedience to 
Clcate toee- 4- Cleave together as the flock of one [hepherd : The Wolf, 
thcr as the flxk it is his property to fcatter the flock , and then to. make a prey 
ofonc (beep- of one after another. It is Satanswileandhisinftrumentsif it 
berd. be poffible to divide the flock of (Thrift, to caufe divifionsjea- 

loufief,feparations,that fa what could not be obtained by their 
unity, might be effected by their differences : But of all things 
ftrive againft divifjon. Remember how earned I y your Shep- 
herd the Lord Jefus at hisiaft laboured with his Difciples for 


y cr ,i. 1 jlull not want. 17 

Love and Unity. You have enemies enough , you need not 
fharpen your tongues one againlt another. ]s it truth which 
you would f let it be maintained wich Unity • pluck not down 
the houfe, though you do difpute about the flowers in the gar- 
den. Jf there were more humility among Chriftians, and chari- 
ty, and wifdom, there would be more affectionate Unity, they 
would love each other better, fpeak better each of other, inter- 
pret e, ch other better, &c. 

5. Laftly, If God be your (hepherd, Then be not difcjuieted 
at hit dealings rvithjou : Sometimes the (hepherd will handle ™ ... t .^ 

his fheep to try how it proves • fometimes he doth cutthe ctc j atGo 5 
fheep very dofe, fometimes he lets his dog out which nips the dealings with 
fheep fharply, and fetcheth blood again, but all is for the good you. 
of the fheep-, afflictions which thou complained of fo much, 
this is all their work , they preferve thee from being aloft 

P S A L. 23. I. 

/ jhall not want 

YOu have heard of the Relation 'twixt God and David, The 
Lord i6 my Shepherd. Now I proceed to touch upon the Il- 
lations, or that which David infers from thence [_ I Jb:iil not 

The words in the Original are iDnN Hi LoEthfar, which 
fome render, I fiaM not fail, or breaks Non deficiam. Others, 
Nothing fhall be wanting unto me. Nihil mihi deerit ; icn 
Chafar ( from whence the word comes, fignifies both, not on- 
ly deefje and deficere, but alfo carer?, indi^erejenuriam fsti t ir.- 
cpi.t Uborare-. q. d. I (hall have enough. The Lord is my 
Shepherd, and I am fure he will take care for me,he will alwayes 
provide for me. 

There are fome who are very nice in their obfervations. Da- 
vid faith not, Nihil deeft, nothing is wanting j this, lay they, 
is Vex bentorttm inpatria, but Nihil mihi deerit, nothing (hall 

D be 

1 8 I frail not want. Vcr.i. 

be wanting, or Khali be fupplied- this is Fox fan&orum in 
via. But to leave nicities you fee the proposition dear- 
Dotl That the foc\ or people of God /hall not Want ^ they are cared 

The Bock or and well provided for. 

people of God The Scriptures are abundant to give teftimony to this, Pfal. 
(hall not wane. 34.IO. The jong Lions do lacl^ and faff er hunger, but they that 
feel^the Lord [hall lack, no good thing. Jer.32.40. I will not 
turn aW ay from them to do them good.VidX.^.n.TheLordU a fun 
and (hie Id, the Lord mil give grace and glory and no good thing will 
he with- hold from them that wa>\uprightly* Mat. 5. 3 ^.Ali theft 
things fbal! be added to you, he fpeaks of meat , and drink, and 
clothing, ^.25. But for the better explanation of this aficrtion 
thefe things are to be difcufTed. 

1. In what fence it it to betaken, when David faith, I Jhall 
not want. 

2. How far it u to be extended, whether to his foul or body, 
or both ; whether to Temporals or to Spirituals. 

3. How it may appear that the flock of God fhail not want, 
and why. 

4. Then the ufeful application &f all this unto ourfeSves. 

In whit fenfe Jg^ In what fenfe the Affertion is to be underftood, \_I Jhall 

this is to be m t rpant~} The reafon of the Quaere is, the many miferies , and 

underftood. {freights, and erodes, and calamities unto which the Saints of 

C'eared by df- For the refolution of this Queftion, there are divers Anfwers 

vers diftin&i given by Divines : 

°n*. 1. There are two forts of things: 

Some thirgs Some which do conduce to wake the condition good and 

make the coo- happy. 

dition good Others which do ferveto makj the condition fmooth and de- 

O bers mike it l&tful As about an houfe there are Pillars and Rafters, &c. 

Pviightful, which arethe bones as it were and abfolute ingredients- and 
there are the Varniftiing5 and Paintings which do fet forth the 
houfe. Or as in a Garden there are profitable fruits, and there 
are pleafant flowers only to look on and fmell. So it is with us, 
there are fome things which make our hearts truly good, and 
tend to our everlafting Salvation • there are other things which 
doonlyferveto.chear and refrefhus in our paffage. Now 


Ver.i. / [hall not want. \9 

when David faith, I [hall not want , they conjecture this to be 
the fenfe, fcit. Nothing (hall be wanting to me which concerns 
the making of my eltate truly happy,though delightfuls may be 
wanting, yet principals (hall not. 

i. Redundant. 

^ c ^ i • ^ fi. Redundam 

z. Some things are | 2 Nm ^ 

Thofe things are Redundant without which a man may well Some things 
pafs over his condition of life. As a man may well ferve God arfRcdunJan:, 
though he have not an eftate of riches or honour comparable to "TV 1 [omz 
another, or alwayes equal to it felf. NwVflJry. 

Thofe things are Necejfary without which a perfon cannot 
well ferve God, as our daily bread, for which Chrift would have 
us to pray : Our bodies cannot be fitted to duty without thefe 
external and necellary fupplies of food and raiment. Even a 
good man, a David may want fuperfluities-, his Table may not 
be varioufly furnifhed, nor his garments gaudily embroydred, 
nor his coffers exceiTively fluffed and piled. But yet he fhall 
not want neceffaries, though he be not fure of plenty, yet of e- 
nough. The Prophet faith, That hit waters /ball be fure and his 
bread fhall not fail \ Ifa.33.1 6. He doth not fay, His Wines are 
fure, but 'ijs waters ; and he doth not fay, His Feaft, but his 
'Bread fhali not fail. Though he hath not alwayes what he 
needs not, yet he fhall have alwayes what is needful. Though 
he hath not the Lace, yet he hath the Garment • though he 
hath not the Sawce, yet he hath the Meat-, though he hath 
not the Palace, yethehaththe Chamber-, though he hath not 
t'heSoftnefs,yethehath the Bed • though he hath not what 
he may Spare, yet he hath what he may life. 

3. Of neceffary things, fome are 'Defecrahle, and feme afeofneafliry 
Stafonxble. Thole things are deferable which have any kind ofcbtogtj fome 
good in them. Thofe things wcfeafonable which have a kind vt Ddirrablc, 
of conveniency or fitnefs in them. It U granted, that there are ?V?'Jff? r€ 
many defierableGoods which a good man hath rot many times; 
Hez^ekiah may be in licle K «efs i and want health • fopph may be 
in prifon, and want 1 berty ; D ivid may be in tx'tft , and wane 
countenance. Health, and liberty, and favour are g)od things 
in their kind and order. 

D 2 Vet 

20 I fball not want. Ver.i. 

Yet no Seafonable good [ha.il he want : When Health is good 
for him, HezekLih fhali recover- when Liberty is good for 
him, fo/eph {hall be loofed • when favour and dignity are good 
for him, then David (hall return and be ietled. 

Compare outward things among themfeives, fo we ftile fome 
of them good, and fome of them evil •, profpericy we call good, 
and adverfity evil • health we repute to be good, and ficknefs 
evil ; fruition we efteem to be good, and lofle to be evil. But 
compare all of them to the exigence of a good perfon, fo either 
of them are good ^ when he hath health, that is good • when 
he hath ficknefs, that is good; It u good for me y faith Da- 
vid, that I Vvas afflitled. A good man may want this thing and 
that thing, but he (hall not want any thing that is good , nor 
when it may be good for him. 
Gbodtbinjs a Again, Divines fay, That good things may be had two 
T^f n y way es, either, 

tcrprctarivcly" Explicitly, When a perfon en joyeth the individual or par- 
ticular things ^ fuppofe- health ,ftrength, liberty, friends and o- 
ther comforts. 

Interpretative!?, When a perfon enjoyeth that which is e« 
quivalent to thofe things. A Citizen may not have a Garden, 
a Farm , Sheep or Oxen, yet he hath thoufands in his purfe 
which are equivalent to all thefe. 

Thus do they fay of a good man, That either he enjoyeth 
the very particular good things which he needs, or elferhofe 
' things which are equivalent to thermnay far exceeding of therm 
Though he cannot have much Lands, yet he hath many Graces; 
though he cannot have the countenance of men, yet he hath 
the favour of God •. though he cannot enjoy quiet abroad, yet 
he fetleth peace within his confeience, which are bleflings in- 
ftead of all ether bleflings , and can revive his heart infinitely 
beyond the prefence of all external things. He that hath but 
one Diamond, may have far more then he who hath a thoufand 
ftones digged out of the Quarry.So, &c. 
Diftirgijifli 5- Youmuft diftrnguiih 'twixt Ah fence , and'twixt lndi~ 

between Ab« ge nee. iA'o fence is when fomething is not prefent. Indigence 
fence and Jn-^ or want, is when a needful good is not prefent. If a man were 
%ence. t0 wa j^ anc j fat not a ftaff^ here were fomething abfent. If a 

man were to walk, and had but one leg, here were fomething 


Vet', i. I fhali not \v Ant. 21 

whereof he were indigent. Tt is confefled Chat there are many 
good things which arc abient from a good pcrfon, but no r,ood 
thing which he wants or is indigent of. If the geod be abfcnt 
and I need it not, this is no want- he that walks without his 
cloak, walks well enough for he needs it not. As loag as lean 
walk carefully and cheerfully in my general or particular call- 
ing, though I have not fuch a load of acccflbries as o. her men 
have, yet I want nothing, for my little is enough, and ferves the 
6. There are two forts of wants, There are two 

In (ome fart of the condition , Torts of wants, 

In the heart and affetlion : In k™j P a . rc oi 

As a man may abound in his condition and yet want in that ° ur c " ndulon - 

/• 1 • m « . 3 . r 1 i 1 -i n In rnc heart 

of his affttltoM. He may have abundance in honour, in eltate, ancl a £f c ai> n . 
in wealth, and yet through an endlcfs covetoufnefs, and vain 
difcontent he may be in want, ft. 11 complaining, murmuring, 
craving. Solomon deciphers this man in Eccl^.S. Trerc is 
one alone and there is not afecond, yea he hath neither child nor 
brother , yet there is no end of all his labour, neither is his eye [a- 
tisfi d with riches, &c. So a man may want fomthingin his 
external condition and yet abound and not want in that of his 
inward afTeftion Though he hath not the outward thing, yet 
he wants it not, for he is contented with the abfence of ic, and 
cannowaspleafedly eat with a little, as formerly he did with 
much; and content himfelf with a plain and mean condition, 
as with a fwelling pompous eftate. So that a good pcrfon 
wants not, for either he hath the good, or elfe is as well pleafed 
snd contented, as if he had it • and to fpeak freely all a mans 
wants, or fulnefs,are rather in refped of his mind, then of the 
things themfelves. For a man may want what he hath, and 
what he hath not he may not want, if the mind be difcontent- 
edly unquiet •, the man who hath much, hath inJecd nothing . 
W>at do all thefe things avail me, faith Haman, as long us 
Mordecai the few fits at the Kings gate ? Efth 5. 1 3 . i e. they 
areas nothing tome. Soon thecontrary, if the mind be fram- 
ed and compofed to contentation, though a man hath not the 
thing,yethe wants it not, i.e. he feels not the want of it, he 
is as well as if he had it •, eats his drte bread, and lies on his 
hard bed, and walks as cheerfully as he that fvvimmes in all ex- 
Ktes. 7. Lai*. 

22 / jh all not want. Vcr.i 

Diftinguilhbc- & Lailly, you mutt d-ftinguifh twixt real wants and iwagU 
twixt rcall * tf? 7 »*»'* • a want to the perfon, and a want to thecorru- 
wams *nd ima- ption : a child is fometimes clamorous for a knife, and fome* 
jinary wants, times he cries for bread ; when he cries for bread, his father a- 
rifeth and fetched* the loaf, the child (ball not want bread v 
but when he cries for the knife this he (hall n®t have, the fa- 
ther will not fatisfic his wantonnefs, though he will fupply his 

Our corruptions are ftill craving and they arealwayes inor- 
dinate, they can rind more wants then God needs to fupply. 
As they fay of fools, they can propofe more qucftions then 
twenty wife men need to anfwer. They in fames- 4.3. did ask. 
but received not and he gives two reafons for it. 1. This ask: 
ing was but a lufling. V. 2.] Te In ft and have not : another, 
they did ask to confnme it upon their tufts, V. 3.] God will 
fee that his people (hall not want, but withall, he will never 
engage himfelfto the fatisfying of their corruptions, though 
he doth to the fupply of their conditions. It is one thing whac 
the (ick man wants, another what his difeafe wants. Your ig- 
norance, your difcontents, your pride, your unthankful hearts 
maymakeyouto believe that you dwell in a barren land, far 
from mercies (as melancholly makes a perfon to imagine that 
he is drowning, or killing, &c.) whereas if God did open your 
eyes as he did Ha^ars, you might fee fountains and dreams, 
mercies and bleflings fufficient , though not many, yet enough^ 
' though not fo rich, yet proper and every way convenient for 
your good and comfort. 

And thus have you the genuine fenfe (fo far as I can Judge) 
of Davids zfertlon 1 fialt not want, I proceed to the fecond 

Q^2. How far the verity of this Affertion extends, whe« 
K °h o/thfs t ^ cr ' co f° ,J l anc ^ kody , to fpirituals and temporals. 
afler:bn ex- &d m * snivver briefly, it holds firm of both, both foul and 
tends. body are the obfeS of Divine Providence, and of Divine Love, 

and both of them are ferviceable to Divine Glory. 

1 . That the (onljhdl mt want^ the Scriptures are abundant. 

T cf »ul (hall j c f^aii j iave Grace and Glory, there is redemption for it, righ- 

pocwant. teoufnefs for it, fan&ificat on for it, and falvation, there is the 

Word to help it, the Sacraments to help it, afflictions to help 


Vcr.i, iJhdllnotwAnu 23 

ic, and the Spirit of God ftill to help it: all almoft that you 
can conceive the foul to ftand in need of for fpincuals may be 
referred, either 

1. To j u ft if ying grace^but that the foul wants not, it is u- Juftifyinj 
nited to thrift and partakes of his righteoufnefs and of rcmifli- Grace, 
on in his blood. 

2. To fanttifying Grace ■, and this the foul hath too, it (hall Sa ^^ • 
not want of fo much holinefs as (nail fave, and though the vef- Grace. 
fcl be not yet 'full, yet it is ftill filling, the God of peace will 
fan&ify throughout, and the righteous (hall be as the Sun 
which encreafeth more and more to the perfed day. He who 

hath little (hall have more, fo much every Saint (hall rife unco, 
as (hall make him fitted in his, place to glorihe God. 

3 .To (irer.gthenir.g and affifting Grace, You (hall not want AflllVn* 
the eye of God to guide you, nor the hand of God to uphold Grace 
you, who did not want the love of God to convert you. 

4. To comforting and refrtflnng Grace : You (hall never Co-nforrir^ 
want proper comforts norfeafoiuble. He who is the God of Grace, 
ail grace, will alfo be the God of all confolatipns unto you. 
Onely you mud go to the wells of falvation, and keep in the 
paths of righteoufnefs if you would not have your (ouls to 
want infpirituals. 

2k', That the bed] fhall not xvar.t in refped of temporal : take The body 
them in any kind, and as fuitable, and necefl'ary, and feafen ibis, not warn. 
and in the ienfes above ex prefled, it is To cleer that it needs not 
further confirmation, yet to prevent all doubts and fcruples it 
flr.i 11 manifestly appear in therefolutionof the next inquiries, 
ziz . 

Q^ How it may appear that the people of God (hall not How i: may 
Wantandwhy. appear that they 

Sol. 1. It may appear by a feries of experimental ir.ftances.^^" '* * 3i y 
Go and enquire into their eftates, and you (hall find many of j^?,;^.^ 
them, that God hath fupplied them, not onely ad f*tn*it*ttm y hihr.ccs, 
but ad abcrtaicm, trey have had not onely for neceflity but for 
variety, not onely ad fkpplimentum but ad om*mer,t um, not 
naked but rich fupplies, not onely helps but ai(b delights : as 
you may fee in Abraham, If.mc, f^cob,Ju((p'o, ALr.*<c ii , and 
many ©.the^s. Yea the difcipUs (who if any, were molt necef- 
faous) yec they had their food and raiment, they bad fuch a fuf- 


24 I fh all net want. Vcr.i. 

ficiency that Chrift impofeth it on them by no mears to be [o- 
licitcm or anxious but quietly to reft contented withanarfii- 
rance that they fhould never want. a Tis true you may find 
fome of the fervants of God more (heightened then others 
and the fame perfons at one time more neeeflitous then at ano- 
ther, yet ftill their condition was fuch as they might upon good 
ground fay, The Lord is my Shepherd, I fhall not want. 
By the wonder- Ic ma V a PP ear b f ^ e ponder fttl ff/f flies of 'God unto his fee 
ful foppiica c f^ ratnertnen they fhould want. Sometime God hath crea- 
God unco his ted helps unto them, Manna in the Wildernefs :, Sometimes he 
people. hath extraordinarily multiplied the means of fuftenance to 

them \ kept a little ftock alive, as it were •, the barrel of meal did 
not fail, and the crttife of cjl didnct wafe to preferve Eliah 
and the Widow, i King. 17. 15.16. 'and fothe widens oyl for 
to help her in her ftreights, 2 King.4.^6. Sometimes he hath 
preferved them without means as <JMo[ts and Elias feurty days 
to walk in the ftrength of one meal. Sometime he hath ftrange- 
ly commanded the creatures to ferve and help and fuccourhis 
fervants, as a raven to feed Eliah. Is it probable that tLey 
(hall want whofe help providence doth undertake even by mi- 
raculous operations. 
By the un- 3. Shall not heaven and earth pafs away before any cne word 
^ eablencfs of God doth fail f The creatures (hall be diffolved into nothing, 
is wor . an j men ^ t ^ e y are ^ | nco £ a | ( - t j es but the word of God (hall 

« alwayes be found a truth. Now what abundance of obliga- 
tions are thefe by which God hath tied himfelf that his people 
(hall not want any thing that is good. / Veill never leave thee 
nor forfahethee, Heb 15.5. No good thing fyall be withheld, 
Pfal.84.11. Who isitthatpromifeth? is it not the Lord God? 
and what wants he to?make his word true ? Wants he power ? 
no I wants he will ? no I why if he hath willingness and 
power and fidelity it cannot be, that they ftiall want. 
By his rrefent ^ Fourthly, confider his prefent donations'. Notonely his 
donations. continued fuf plies of your bodies to this very day from the 
womb , but like wife his fingular exprerfions to your 
fouls. Hath he not done great things for your fouls? What 
do ye think of fefas Chrift} Is he not an invaluable and in- 
comparable gift? His blood is more precious then gold and 
filver ; he is the very happinefs of your fouls : and what do 


V c r. i . J fl>*M n ct w*m* 2 5 

you think of the graces of Go ds Spirit which infinitely exceed 
the rubies and the pearls, they arc the image of" God and uur 
cho celt excellencies. Or what think you of betvettlj giorj, 
is it not beyond all companion and expreiliun } Why now tell 
me, will God not fufler his people to want thegreareit, and 
will he be wanting in the leaft ? Will he freely give them many 
things worth worlds, and will he not give them bread and rai- 
ment ? If he gives us Chriit, how /ball he not with him give us 
Ml ether things faith the Apoitlc, Rem.8. 32. 7. d. it cannot be 
otherwife, never imagine the contrary. 

5. Fifthly, kuff.cUlajfitlion to his people. What are his HJs f pcc j a |i a f. 
people (think you to him) the Scripture calls them the people fedion co bis 
of his love, of his delight, his beloved j whatnot that, beto- people. 

kens love? he knows them above all the people of the earthy 
you fee that he clothes, and feeds,and fupplies his very enemies, 
thofe whom he calls the generation of his wrath and curfe •, he 
makes his Sun to rife upnn them, and drops many bleftings on 
them, the unkindeft vefTels receive of him many mercies . will 
any do for them that hate him, and not for them that love him? 
for enemies and not for friends ? 

6. His /insular relations. The Lord is to his pcople,as a fa- His fin jub: 
ther to his children. 2 Cor. 6. 18. 1 will be a Father unto jc» relations. 
and ye fhallbe my fons and daughters, faith the Lord Almighty. 

Again he is to his people as an husband to the wife.77?j UMaker 
is thine Husband, the Lord ef hofls is his name, Ifa.54 J. Why 
the Lord takes care of all the family of the earth : his hand 
opens it fclf and fills every living creature •, he feeds the Ra- 
vens that cry unto him, will not have the mouth of the Oxen 
to be be muzzled, clothes the grafs of the field. Can a woman 
forget her fucking child . ? yet will I not forget t 1 f/ 1 , I fa 49 15- 
And is it not more then probable that he will take care to pro- 
\idethat his wife, that his children fhall not want : woi-Ii 
any be careful that the fervant be fupplied, and be carelefs whe- 
ther :he child doth want or no? will any take care that all the 
family have provifion, and yet care not whether the wife hath 
ought ? 

7. Laftly, take the acquittances and ackno^'eJgments of iff ~J"j Acauic- 
the fervants of God that they have made unto the Lord and^ e f rssnr$ f 
delvered under their own hands. The Lord hath bletfeAmy God. 

E Al after 

16 I [hall not want. Ver.i. 

Mafter greatly, and he is become great , and he ha>h given him 
flocks and herds, and ftlver and gold, and men- fervants and maid- 
fervants, and camels and affes. This was fpoken when Abr&- 
^wwasold, Gen 34.25. Compared with v. 1. Jacob , faith 
for himfelf, / am not Worthy of the leaft of all the mercies and 
all the truth which thou haft fhewen unto thy (ervant, for with 
my flaffe I payed over this Jordan , and now I am become t^o 
bands, Gen. 3 2. i. fofeph faith to his brethren^Hafteyou,and 
go to my father, and fay unto him, thus faith thy fon fofeph, 
God hath made me Lord of all Egypt, Gen 45.9. David is often 
at it in this Pfalm all over, and in Pfal. 16.5. The Lord is the 
portion of mine inheritance and of my cup, thou maintainefl my 
lot : .V.6. The lines are fallen to me in pltaj ant place s,yea I 
have a goodly heritage. Not that I fpeak^, faith S. Taul 
Phil 4. 1 1 . in refpett of want, but I have all and abound^ v. 1 8. 
Yea, perufe all the Scripture and tell me where you find any 
one Saint ( being himfelf) ever to complain in regard of want. 

Obj. But now it is obje&ed againft all this, that there arc no 
people in the world that are in fuch want as the people of God 
for outward things, none fo fleeced as they, and fo expofed,and 
fo fpoiled, and dcftituteas you may fe: in the Scriptures and all 
over the world. 

Sel.i. You know that all thefe outward things are promifed 
not peremptorily, but 1. With condition, if good for them : 
2. With exception of the Crofs. 

I befeech you, tell me, whether it is better for a man to faft 
in a Feaver,then to eat ? eating is not good for him at fuch a 
time. So,&c Again , which is better to keep Chrift or a 
mans worldly ftate and comforts ? Til true, if a man may en- 
joy Chrift and the things of the world too, it is notneceffary to 
abandon either, but when thefe two ftand in Competition, that 
either the life muft be loft or the goods in the fhip • either my 
goods muft be forfaken,or Chrift : Why, a Chriftian judgeth 
not this to be a lofs, to be a want , fo that he may enjoy Chrift 

2. You know what the Apoftle fpeaks i-n 2Cor.4-8. we are 

troubled on every fide 3 y et not di ft re fed-, Wi are perplexed, but not 

in defpair ; perfecuted, but not for[a\en ; cafl down % but not de- 

Jlroyed. Inlofies, and Perplexities f and dijirejfes for Chtiff. 

— - Thg 


Ver.i. / [Ija/l not want. 27 

The Chriftian may fay to the world as Chrift did to his Difci- 
ples, J have ment which you l^now net of, fo faith he. Comforts, 
fupr orts, fatisfaftions which the world knows not of. He hath 
more content in bonds and furTerings, then in liberty and con- 
fluences j he feels not the want which a fenfual and carnal heart 

' Now I come to the Application of this point to our felves. 
Shall not the flock or people of God want ? then you who take T , ; V r 
your felves to be the people of his pafture, give ear and heark- Gods P p"ftjr°c 
en this day unto two things : mult hearken. 


1. Your Sixs % 

2. Your c Dx:j, 

i. Tcur Sins : That you fuflfer your hearts fo to be crackt Tochelr Sin. 
w'uh fears t and your minds to be filled with cares. The Lord in their fears 
be merciful unto you, how dejeded your eyes are fometimes ? anci ca:es - 
how diftrefTed your thoughts are fometimes? how feaverifh 
your fpirits are and ready to (ink to the very duft and grave? 
you are at your wits end, why ! what's the matter ? doth fome 
lingular guilt lye upon your confeience ? No 1 Do you appre - 
hend in you the terrors of Gods difp'eafure ? No ! Have you 
flighted the wayes of God or voice of God ? No! Is a parent 
dead? a wife dead? a child dead? is the hand of God in any 
heavy meafure upon you? No! What is it then that thy coun- 
tenance is caft down.thac thou walkeft fo folitarilyjooks fo hea- 
vily, fpeaks fo mornfully • thatilghs multiply in thy brelt, and 
tears rife up in thy eyes, and trembling appears in thy joints, 
a^.d palenefs in thy face ? O I (hall want, I ftiall fail, my 
means and fupports will not hold out ; I (hall come to pover- 
ty, to penury, my eftate is (horr, the oil is almoft all run out , 
and the meal is even neer fpent, and the imaginations of it doe 
ven crufh my heart and foul. 

But as the Lord anfwered Job, too much complaining in Iu's 
condition, fo may I fay unto you thus deje&ing your fouls, Job 
382. Who is thu that dark» f th council by wtrds rvith ut 
knoveledg. When Saul propVielied naked, but, fay they , ir 
u his father ? that fay I unto you, who by yourdifrruihul ima- 
ginations, and cxceflivc perplexities darken die intentions and 

E 2 the 

28 I jhall not want. Vcr.i. 

the truths of the Almighty, and walk in thefhadowofyour 
own fears, but who is their father ? Haft thou not heard > and 
haft thou not known front ever lading tb*t ihe Lord fainuthnot ? 
nor doth he ever for fake his pccp/e : Lay afide thy vexing thoughts 
awhile, and fufpitious'imag; nations ,and folely regard what fhall 
be fpoken nnto thee, and judg how unjuftiy and foolifhly thou 
doft challenge God,and needlciTely encreafeft fears, and fadnefs, 
and bitterneffe, and dejections upon thy own Spirit. 
Thou haft no J. Thou hall: no reafon at all to conclude that thou {bait 
rcifon to con- Want . Confider, 

chide thou fhalc jyhat hath God been mto thee already} Hath he been unto 
What h h C ^ ce as a ^ anC * barren wildernefs ? Or as the Oft rich , that 
God been unto ^° ar ^ ens her f elf again ft her yong ems as though they were net hers % 
thee for time Job39.it?. Doft thou not hitherto live f and who hath been 
paft. the fountain of that life ? Haft thou not hitherto been fed? 

and who is it that gives us our daily bread ? Hitherto thou art 
preferved, redeemed, fufteined, fed, clothed, cared for, the 
Lord hath not forfaken thee^ nay, the teftimonies of his provi- 
dence are to be found upon thee and thine this very moment: 
thou canft not conclude on a future want, by the experience of 
any antecedent want •, from the womb to this day the accounts 
arc clear 'twixtGod and thee, he is not indebted at all, nor canft 
thou juftly challenge him for any negieft of thee. 
What is the What is the nature of God for the frefext : Is he like man 9 

naturfofGod that he fhould change . ? or the fons of men, that he fliould caft 
for time prefent off? He is thefameyefterday, and to day, and for ever, and 
with him there is no fhadow of change. 

Was he God All-fufficient ? Is he not fo ftill ? thy loving 
and Companionate God? is he notfo ftill? thy Almighty 
God ? is he not fo ftill ? Is he deceitful ? or is his hand fiiort- 
ned? doth he ceafe to be God, or to be thy God? If the Foun- 
tain ftill lives and runs, why fhouldeft thou imagine to dye by 
thirft .? If the Sun ftill fliines,why (bouldeft thou fancy nothing 
but darknefs ? If the Lord ftill lives, and lives to be the God of 
thy mercies, Oh how unreafonabiy finful is it to kill thy felf 
with fears of want ? 
What is the what is the promt fe of God for the future ? hath he undertaken' 
promifes of thy fuftentation, preservation, fupports, neeeffary comforts and 
fimt fuu^ S 00 ^ for a week, or a moneth, or a year f arehispromifes 
- — u - e# (which 

Vcr.i. 1 fhall not want. 29 

(which are the treafuries of all thy good, and the chambers of 
all thy mercies) clouds only which rain a while plentifully, an J 
thenfalloff? or are they not rather Wells of Salvation, Inex- 
hauft Springs, running from generation to generation. There 
is yet much in reverfisn, thou haft not all in pofTeffion, but the 
better part of thy portion is yet in thy fathers hand. When 
thou art dead and gone, and rotten , his word of promifc (hall 
be a faithful and effedual Word to fupport the children of ma- 
ny future years which thou fhalt never fee. And therefore how 
juftly blameable art thou to cry out and to fink with the fear of 
Want? when as thou haft a God who hath provided for thee, 
and bleft thee j doth provide for thee, and blefs thee • will pro- 
vide for thee, and blefs thee. 

2. Thouhafi allthereafenin the world to conclude that thou Thou haft all 
[halt not Want, whether thou confidereft, Reifon to con - 

That Fftlnejs , infinite fuln^fs which is in God : Irs clu^e thou (halt 
goodnefs is unfearchable,the depths thereof are bottomlefs : He " ot "J*™*, 
is an All-fufficiency. The childs ftomach may be too large for jh" /uinef" S 
the mothers milk, and the fons fpending too high for the fathers : hx: is in God. 
eftate, and a mans occafions too many for his friends help. But 
Divine goodnefs is fuch a Common as cannot be overlaid : 
Though there be not Water enough for a few fhips in the Ri- 
ver, yet there is water and room enough for all the (hip? in the 
world on the Sea. That great God who feeds a whole world 
everv day, he is able enough to fuftain thee all thy dayes. 

That will in£ne/j that is in God to do thee good. I grant Th . pjjj^. 
that nower alone is not fufficient for confidence, but power and nf f s tn ac is in 
will both are. God. 

t)bj. Of that we doubt. 

Sol. Tell me what is imaginable to thy mind which may ^[? UI ^* ^ 
breed in thee a confidence f yea an undoubted afTurance that G " T* s wiling 
God is willing that thou fh3lt not want. to do us £ 

Firn\ Would ,'pcct l Relation J cwixt thee and him produce Special &dati< 
it? The wife is confident when the ftranger is not, the child 01, 
fears not vhen the fervant doth. Now God is tbj Fat her ^thou 
art his Child, he is thy Husband, thou his Spoufe. If any thing 
will make us careful and bountiful, it is Love- if any love 
will make usfo, it is chat love which is in fuch near Relati- 


5o I jh all not want. Ver 

Bkprcfs A flu- Secondly, Would affirmation^ Word or Speech of God af- 
maucn. f ure us thereof: When a father manifefts his care and intenti- 

on of good, now all fear is quieted: If he fhould take the child 
abroad, and fay, Son, be not troubled, thou haft hitherto had 
experience of my love and care , be confident a father hath na- 
tural affedions to a child, he oftentimes pincheth himfelf to 
help a child. My eftate is good , my affedions unto thee are 
great % take my word, I will take Angular care for thee as long as 
1 live. Why ! this would fatisfie and chear up any rational 

Thus the Lord fayeth to us in his Word, Be not difquieted, 
trouble not your felves in vain, fret not, vex not, fear not, hi- 
therto I have helped you, and I am an All-fufficientGod and 
your Father, never think that I will forfake you, I have faid , 
That I will nevir have jou nor forfake yctt^ whom I love % I love 
to the end ^ do not think of me worfe then an Injide I "toko f re- 
vises not for his own family. 

I have done you good, and I will never turn away from doing 
you good : I tell thee, I will with- hold no good thing from 
thee, but will be thy God and guide URto death. Doth not the 
Lord fay all this in the Scriptures, and fhould not this poffefs 
us of his willingnefs that we fhall not want. 
Singular Ob- ^ a Y' Thirdly, Will not an obUgein^ Tromife only , but an 
li^ion. Emphatical ferioufnefs in the manner of his promi(ing,perfwade 
us that he is willing, we fhall not want. Proteftations , AfTe- 
<verations are ufually more inductive to affent and perflation 
then naked Affirmations or promifes. Now the Lord hath not 
only faid a Word, but made a Promife, he hath not only made 
a Promife, but aifo a kind of Proteftation or Affeveration, that 
you fhall not want. WhatisthatExpreiTionin<p/tf/ 37 3- F*- 
rily xhikpalt be fed. Verily, (/. e.) As true as I am God I will 
take e^re of thee that thou fhalt not want. What is that un- 
parralelled Gemination in Heb. 13 5. I will never \ rever % never % 
never, never Untie thee nor forfake thee y but this I w'lWever, 
ever^ ever, for ever and ever take care ofthee. 

Nay, if Affirma'ion, and Promife, and AfTeveration will not 

Ota'AadorM* Y et a ^ ure 5 Y en an Obteflation , an Oath may put an end to all 

Oath, doubt and controvert. But the Lord hath fwom by kimfelfi 

You have his Oath that he will not fail you, (dare you think 


Ver. i . ijhdl not want. 3 1 

that the Lord will be guilty of a lie, or which is worfe, of per- 
jury }) but in blefling he will blefTe you, and will a fibred ly do 
you good with bi6 tyhclc heart t and With his whole foul, Jer. 3 2. 

41, dec 

2. Your Duty : To be humbled for vexatious cares and fears, Their Djty. 
and then to caft your care oh God, and to walk with that alacrity 

of fpint in your callings as becometh the people of that God 
who hath ib undertaken all your fupplies that you (hall not 
want. Phil. 4.6 Be careful for mthing , but in eve\y thing by 
prayer and fupp lie ation With thankj giving ^ let your re que ft be 
made known unto Cjod. I Pet. 5. 7, Casing all jour care upon 
kirn for he careth ferjeu. 
Two things will I here propound unto you, 

1. The Motive /, 

2. The Means. Motives. 
1 . The LMotives, which (hall be drawn, 

3. Yromthe tvil Inconveniences of not trufting on the Lord From the evil 
your Shepherd to fupply your wants. They are very ma-inconvenicn- 
n y . ersof noctruft- 

1. It is a T>ifhmourable thing not to caft your care on the ^ rJ cn thc 
Lord You do dishonour It is D^oncr 

1. Him exceedingly : What will people think of a Father 
whofe children cry out upon him, That he will not allow them 
food and raiment ? The father fufTers in the want of the child, 
as much as the child: what inglorious thoughts are hereby 
faftned on your God ? as if he had no merciful affections unto 
you, nor tender intentions, nor knowledg of your neceftities , 
nor compaflion to help you, nor faithfulnefs to perform his 
Word, nor wifdom to difcern what were good for you. 

2. Your holy Prof iff} on \ How apt are people to fatten all Toyow holy 
mifcarriages of godly men upon Godlinefs it felf. You make Predion, 
the WayesofGod, and Practice of Religion to be blafphemed 
by your intolerable dejeftednefs, and fears and fadnefs. They 
will not imagine that there is that ftrength in grace to fatisfie 
the heart, nor that power in holinefs to comfort the heart • and 
that trufting in God is but a fond reed, which can no better 
enable the foul in ftrength erfupportir with any cheerfulnefs 
in wants. Yea, what dittinftion do you nuke in your behavi- 
our 'twixt a Believer, and an Unbeliever ? 'twixc a Chriftian , 


3 a I (hall not want. Ver.i 

and a Pagan? Do not the Heathens after this manner? 
what can they do lefs then this? what do ye more then 
they ? 
Icissnll!*- 2 - It is an Vnpeaceable thing: You lofe all your peace until 
peaceable thing ye can reft upon God by faith for your fupplies. You lofe 
your tafte of God t of mercies received, of your felf by Unbelief. 
I he Stone never leaves running till it comes-to the Center, nor 
the Ship toiling till it comes to anAnchor,nor the foul difquiet- 
ing it feif till it comes to a reftingon God. If you will not 
truftGodfor your future fupplies, of neceffityyou muft bear 
your own burdens of imaginations and fears ^ either you muft 
be quiet in reftingon his care, or perpetually unquiet by yield- 
ing to your own carefulnefs. For there is nothing which can 
quiet the foul but God : You want the Creatures,and the Crea- 
tures wanted, will trouble you , you would fupply your own 
wants, but no man can be a God to himfelf. So that if you be 
far from Faith you will be far from Peace. 
Icisa Prcjudi- 3. It is a Prt\udicial thing : None want more then they 
cial thir j. who will not truft on God to fupport their wants : if you wane 
Faith, you muft want Mercies. Unbelief is the iron bar againft 
the mercies which we want, as unthankfulnefs is the grave of the 
mercies which we have received. You (hall go out with abun* 
dance of thoughts, labour with abundance of fears, come home 
with abundance of grief, lye down with abundance of difcon- 
ten^and tofs the n.ght with abundance of vexations ; all which 
« (hall be your torments, but not your helps- your additions of 
evil, but not minifters of any good unto you. 
It is i very fin- 4. It is a very Sinful thing : Of all fins Unbelief is one of 
ful thing. the greateft, and a caufelefs Unbelief is the greateft of all, The 
lefler the thing is, and the more able the giver of it is^ and the 
more faithful he is, and the more experiences we have had of 
his goodnefs and fidelity, the more vile is your unbelieving of 
that God: Now it is more offensive to him,more aggravated by 
From the gocd Secondly ,From the G od tint will come unto you by truftiflg 

that will corre on q oc | f or t j ie f U pp|y f your wants. 
You ftTii be- T • You (hall be able hereby to Honour God very much. Un- 
nourGod much belief is a cloud over all his Attributes, but Faith gives glory to-. 
God, it doth exalt God, and it doth enable us in our callings xo 

Ver.i. / [hall not voxnt. 33 

exalt God, and the more we advance bis glory, the more we 
advance our own mercies, and, thofe that honour me y 1 Vri/I ho- 
nour x 1 Sam. 2. The Chriftian fhould look at Divine glory 
more then at his own fupplies : How did Job advance him when 
he faid , Though he kill me^yct will I trufi on him } And Abra.* 
ham glorified him much when ag.unfl hops, he believed in hope ; 
This is like a Chriftian who hath a God and dares truft on him, 
live upon him, and in the midft of all evils and neccilicies can 
triumph with Faith, yet the Lord is my God, my Shepherd, I 
fhall not want j He will be my God and guide to death, he will 
never leave me nor forfake me. Yea, you fhall honour him in 
your callings, if you do believe on him, you fhall look up and 
pray, look up and trade, look up and hear, and read , and me- 
ditate, and do all your duties readily, chearfully, conftandy- 
whereas others can neither read, nor pray, nor work, nor 
dired , nor any thing elfe for want of Faith, and for fear of 

Two evils befal them about duties who do not truft on God Two Evils s- 
for their future fupplies ^ either inipatient Diver fions and Ab- bouc d " ties . iot 
flratlions. It is vain toferve god, and what profit u it that we ^q- F *L lh 
t*Vi k,ept hi* Ordinances ? Mai- 3.14. Or , violent Incur fions Y jd cncc , 
.and Dijiratlions. Our tongues are Praying, but our thoughts 
are Projecting ; our ears are Hearing, but our hearts are Mur- 
muring. We are not where we are, we do not what we do j 
our bodies are in one place, and minds in another ; they work 
one thing, and the foul another. So that God hath no Duty 
at all, or little in all duty, till we can truft in him- and confe- 
quently no Glory. 

2. You engage the Lord to your help by fruiting on his You engage 
Pafloral care that you (hall not want-, as Faith honours God, fo the Lord :• 
it ingageth God. There are two things which engage God to y cur hcl P* 
the help of his people. 

1 . His own Faithfulnefs ^ and therefore is he faid to remem- 
ber his Covenant and his Word, and to do it for his Names fake, 
becaufe he will not fuffer his faithfulnefs to fail. As the Apoftlc 
fpake concerning a fuller San&ification, god is faithful who wt/I 
alfodoit^ that may be faid of neceflary fupplies in externals, 
God will bring them in, he will give them becaufe he is faith- 
ful who hath promifed. 

F 2. Out 

34 I jhall not want. Vera. 

2. O fir faith in trusting on his faith f nine fs. So the Prophet, 
If a. 26. 3 . Thou wilt keep him in perfeft peace who/e mind is (lay- 
ed on thee, becaufe hetrufieth in thee. Our believing in God 
though it be not a Deferving Argument, yet it is an Jngaging 
Argument. If we be not behind with our Fatth, he will not 
be fhort in his LMercie s. The menofjudah prevailed becaufe 
they refiedon the Lord God of their fathers, 2Chr.1g.18. As 
water feccheth water • ftrength came becaufe they relied on 
ftrength : God will own our Conditions , if we do own his Pro- 
mifes. When you come by faith unto the Lord,and fay, Lord ! 
this is thine own Word of Truth, upon which thou haftcaufed 
me to truft, by reafonof it I withdraw confidence from allo- 
ther, and have committed all my comforts, all my fupplies, all 
my expectations into thy hands, and do depend on none but 
thee^truredly the Lord will be faithful and very good unto that 

3. Asytur merciful fupplies will come in the fooner, fo will 

Your fupplies thej relijh thefweeter upon believing : You (hall certainly en- 

wiJl reliih the joy, and comfortably enjoy. When you reft on God to get 

er * fupplies, the fupplies being gotten, reft is gotten with them^ you 

{hall not only handle his goodnefs, but delight your felves in the 

abundance of peace. 

Two things will befall us upon ourtrufting in God; Viz. 
Peaceable exemptions ., you (hall exped your helps without tur- 
bulency: And Comfortable poffejfions •, you {hall enjoy your 
< fupplies without bitternefs 

4, Laftly, Supplies as they are more comfortable upon be- 

w* Ubc Uf>PllCS ' icvia £> *° the y ar€ m9re d HrMe * Faitn natn the longeft leafe 
durable? ^ t0 n0 ^ an Y buffing from God : of all mercies thofe are beft 
kept which are beft got- that which we believingly get from 
God, is alwayes moft carefully preferved by God. 
ThcMeansto Secondly, The Means to enable our hearts to t ruft on God 
enable us to f or tne f U pply of our wants , and to be perfwaded that he will. 

never fail you,are thefe , 
Take heed of 1 . Take heed of thofe things which beget and multiply fears of 

£h vV b i! n8S ***** y -s- 

fcar of wan" l • H norance °f Go ^ x M * n wn0 * a ' fc m tne ni § nt are moft 

Ijnorancc of a P c t0 ^ ear : an ignorant mind , and a troubled heart, or an 
God, hardned heart ufually are companions . For that which fetcleth 


Vcr. i . * fodl no* want. 3 5 

the affcftions and compofeth them is Kr.owled^. There are 
three things in God, whereof if a man be ignorant he will be 
much in cares and fears of want. 

One is Gods Fulntfs : If he apprehends not a fulnefs in all ofGodsFul- 
and every of Gods Attributes, his foul will fear and care. If ncfs. 
I conceive that God is fully able to fupply one want , and noc 
many, or many of my wants, but not all, or all my perfonal 
wants, but not my domeftical wants ; all my wants heretofore 
when I was a fingle perfon, but not all now, when my charge 
encreafeth and multiplies by children and fervants. He who 
thus conceives of God, no more then of a half God,of a God 
of the Valleys and not of the Mountains, one who can fupply 
low and mean, but not high and great wants . few and not ma- 
ny wants, former wants, but not prefent, present but not future 
wants, extremely miftakes the fountain of fupplies, and mull 
neceflarily be toiTed and crucified with perpetual waves and 
darts of rolling fears and cutting cares. And therefore if ever 
you would preferve your fouls from fears of want, know, ftudy 
to know by the Scriptures, how full and All-fufflcient that God 
is, who undertakes your help, that he is an Univerfal good and 
infinite, able to fatisfie the defire and need of every living crea- 
ture. Thy wants in comparifon of all the wants of the crea- 
tures in the world , is not fo much as a farthing to a thoufand 
pounds: That God who can fupply all, hath all fupplics in 
himfelf ^ yea, he can give bread alfo as well as water, and ex- 
tend his provident care to thine, as he hath continued it to thy 
felf. Multitudes may caufe difficulty, where the nature is finite 
and limited; many pails will quickly empty and fink a pond, 
but they make no diminution nor variation where the good- 
ncfs is infinite-, all the men of the world cannot draw the Tea 

A Second is, Cods ^ffetlionater,efs : Though you know his of Gods At"- 
Power, yet if you be ignorant of his Love, you will tire out fcdionatcncis. 
your fpirits with fears of want. Forafmuch as we generally 
conceive that Love is the hand of Bounty which turnes the key 
and gives out all our fupplies : If the child queftions his fathers 
Love, he will quickly grow jealous of his fathers Allowance. So 
i< it with us, if we be doubtful of Gods afTeft on, we will be 
fearful of Gods fupplics : True, fay we, whom the Lord loves ke 

F z lovts 

36 I {hall not want. Vcr.i. 

loves to the end •, them he will never leave nor forfake, but whe- 
ther he loves us or no we doubt, and therefore we can neither 
boldly go to him and ask, nor confidently reft upon him toex> 
ped A mifpcrfwafion of Gods love or a doubting thereof 
is a root of little love to God and of much unquiet fear in oar 
felves every way. 
: G , . A third is Gods immutability or uncharge xblenefs. It can- 

amiability, ""not be but that he ftiould fear much want, who doth fear and 
(u(pe& Gods conftancy. If we conceive of God, as of a crea- 
ture, that he is off and on, now he loves, now he hate*; one 
while who but we, and (hortly lookt on as never knowen •, one 
while the purfe runs, and within a few daies the door is (hut. 
I fay if we do thus ignominioufly think of God as of men, 
that though his geodnefs be fweet, yet it is but fhort, and 
though he can do enough for us yet his mind may be altered 
or his promife broken, no mervail our hearts be full of fears 
when they are fo empty of the true knowledge of God • who 
is as affedionate to his peoples good, as he is very much able, 
and as unchangeable in his intentions of their good as he is li- 
beral in the expreflions of it. Thou maieft juftly fav, what if 
my friend ftiould fail me ? what if my Parents fhould die ? 
what if my (hip (hould fplit ? what if the thieves (hould come 
in? what if my own life (hould change? but thou canft nevec 
fay, what if God (hould die? or what if God (hould lie? or 
what if God (hould break and fail I 
Confidence on ' 2 « Confidence on the creatures. You will never be exempted 
the creature t either from idolatry or trouble, if you place confidence on any 
creature , either you muft imagine the creatures to be infinite 
ihields againft all evil, or infinite Sunnes of all good and fo 
quiet your felves, but this is idolatry. Or you muft conceive 
the creatures to be mu'cable cloudy weak hands, withering trees, 
unable principles of your good, and changeable inftrumems • 
on which while you fix your thoughts, how do your thoughts 
beget thoughts, and fparkle up (ufpitions, and encreafe many 
fears? v. g. But if he dies, I have no other to provide for me • 
but if the (hip mifcarry, I am broken and undon •. but if 1bch a 
thing fail, I may run my countrey •, but if he (hould not con- 
tinue his love and bounty, I and mine may go a begging • write 
it down you loft your reft if you fettle on the creatures. There 
''""'"■ '" is. 

Ver. i . Ijhall n$t tvant. 3 7 

is no retting upon a reftlefs object ; all the world is but tea, 
doth a man think to lie quiet in the fea ? did you ever fee a 
ftone fixed in the aire? There are natural principles of inabi- 
lity, and of inftability in the creatures, and though they may 
exceed us in duration, yet their operations and fcrvicesare fo 
under a fuperior reftraint and difpofal , that the mind and 
heart of man can never draw any certainty, either of power or 
readinefs to fupply its wants and neceflities. It hath not all our 
good in them, nor doth it give out all the good it hath, and 
when it doth, the cock may be turned and then the water (tops, 
God may difpofe the heart another way,& though a perfon hath 
many though:s of doing us good, yet man foon dies, fuddenly 
d es, gives up the ghoft and where is he? he periftieth and his 
thoughts perifh. with him. 

Man is fubjed to changes, Adive and Pailive. Yea every 
manisalwayes fubject to many unavoidable and pafiive chan- 
ges, ficknefle?, loflfes , deaths, and therefore he who leans on 
man muft necelTanly be hazarded with many a thought and 
fear, fuch an one is dead, and now there's an end of thy hopes, 
and a fpring of thy griefs and fears. Every man may be in a 
thoufand minds and therefore he who depends upon man nuy 
be (till under a thoufand fears. 

3 Forgetfuliefs of mercies received and former experiences 
of Gods good hand unto us. The IfraeUtes had their mercies y r B c, ™»™ 
written in water, and therefore their hearts were drowned with c ., vc ^ 
murmurmgs and fears : they remembred not the high hand of 
God, how powerful it was, and how ready to work good unto 
them, and therefore they ftill lulled, and whined, and cried out, 
fliall we die for thirft, and can God (pread a sable in the Wi/a'er- 
refs > The Apoftle faith, that Experience breeds h*pe. A per- 
fon who hath had experience of Gods goodnefs and faithful- 
nefs, that when he was in fuch a ftreig'ic and exigence and 
fought the Lord, and trultcd on him, and he heard him • why ! 
if the fame or another exigence befall him, he will not be much 
dilmayed but w.ll remember the work? of old, and conclude 
future help from former experience. But if we bury our ex- 
perience*, we do then fupprefs our hopes and raife up our fears. 
jt we think not at all of any g>od which God hath already ^ .- 
done, or thinking of it do not ftir up our hearts upon that ex- 

3 8 Ijhall not want. Vcr.i. 

perience to blefs God and to rely our felvcs on him, now fears 
and doubts of want will encreafe and throng upon us. 

Oh. Oh 1 I (hall now perifti, mine muft now want, I have no 
friends now to fet me to work, or to drop in help, or to find out 

SoL But thou forgetteft the dayesof old, thou forgettcft 
him who clave the rock, in the voildernefs, and rained down 
Manna from heaven s thou remembreft not the day when the 
Lordfent infuchanhelp that thou never imagineft, and gave 
thee fuch a friend as thou never tboughteft on, and found out 
fuch a way and imployment for thy good to help thee and 
thine : and hence is it that thou art flow to believe on him, and 
art now fo opprefted with thy own imaginations and doubtful 
The life of 4* ^ eii f e c f ! e »f e - This is a life of cares and fears when 

fcnff. men W 'M nvc by fig* 11 anc * not by ^h an< * J uc *g e °f God onely 

by what is before their eyes, and by the vifible probabilities of 
carnal means onely : as if God could do no more then their 
reafon can reach, or their fenfes can difcern, or then he makes 
(hew of unto them before hand. Now every wave will tofs 
our boat and every cloud will darken our heaven. One whiJe 
we will be cheerful becaufe we fee the means rifing towards us 
like the Sun in the morning • another while we will be fearful, 
becaufe the fame Sun is ready to fet and to decline us. When 
the creatures open themfelves then we will live, when they fhut 
themlelves (like the flower which depends on the Sun) our fpi. 
ritswill faint within us and we cry out, There is none to help 

All things in refpect of us, whether Spiritual or Temporal, 
are very variable to fenfe, capable of many and fudden changes 
and therefore are grounds of doubtfulnefs in the mind , and 
fearfulncfs in the afFedions. 

5. Inordinate love and tffetiien. Whatfoever a manover- 
In !MF &/ ^ oves or overcravcs ^ breeds either much doubt that he (hall not 
an ac ,0. | iave j c _ or rnuch fear that he fhall lofe it. The covetous men 
are more fubject to fear then any, though they have much plen- 
ty, yet they eat, and work, and fcrape, as if they of all the 
people in the world, were moft neceflitous, and fliould come to 
poverty. Cares of getting, and fears of wanting , are the 


Vcr.i a I Jhall not want. 39 

continual burthens andladings of their lives.In ail temporals this 
holds true, that much love is much trouble, and he who eager- 
ly enlargeth his defires, doth neceflanly encreafc his fears ; the 
naughty heart which will not truft God to provide, hath this 
judgment on him, that God lets a turbulent fufpition prevail 
upon him, that the creature will perhaps not bring in enough 
unto him,and his defires are far too wide for his fupplies.lt can- 
not but be a vexing torment when a greedy child fucks at a dry 
breaft, and a covetous fpirit draws hard at an infufficient and 

unfatisfyingobjed. Strong de-ires cannot be denied without 

much grief, and arc never fatisfied without much fear. That 
man to whom much is not enough, if he fhould enjoy never fo 
much, would yet want more. The very Heathens obferve that 
the covetous pcrfon is of all men the moft needy, what he hath, 
he wants, and he wants alfovvhat he hath not. Therefore if 
ever you would have hearts exempted from vexations of fear, 
endeavour firft to have them cleanfed from covetoufnefs of de- 
fire. If the foot did not fwell fo much the (hoe wonld fu you 
well enough : it is onely the corruption not the condition that 

6. Pride of hea^t is alfo another ground of fear of want. Tp ri j c r h . 
3m confident that many complaints and troubles arife oncly 
from pride. If all things were duly examined there is bread to 
feed on, bed to lie on, houfe to cover them, clothes to warm 
them- yet tears break out, what (hall we do ? and how (hall 
weJivc? The Commentary of this diftruftful expoftulasion is 
but this, we have not enough to go in the fafhion, or to go fo 
high, and feed fo higb, and live fo high, as formerly we dio\ and 
what's this but pride? 

O '7. I would not go like no body, but in fome fa(hion live as 

Sol. Nay then thou art proud and childifh, that anothers 
coat is finer then thine, and thy piece of bread is not fo big as 
his Brethren, if our humility were more, our wants would 
be lefs ^ God doth not ingage himfelf for fuperfluities : every 
one of his children (hall have what is good and enough, though 
many thing; which belong to greatnefs and itate ( being necJ- 
ljefs) may be withheld. 
7. The laft ground of fear of want (which I (hall mention) Unbelief. 



40 I jh all not want. Ver.i. 

- is unbelief. This is the fin which is like death called in Scri- 
pture, the k}*>g of fears which withdraws the foul from the 
fountain of goodntfs, and from the fprings of peace The 
heart in (freights will not be quiet, unlefs it can fee the good ic 
wants or be afTured of it, but unbelief (huts the eye from look- 
ing on Gods Ail-fufficiency, and theearalfo from ered ting his 
affuranccor undertaking of our helps It withdraws us from 
our help and how then can we but be perplexed with the pre- 
fence or expectance of want. If I do not truft God, my 
confeience (mites me with terror - 5 and if ] would truft him, 
my unbelief withholds me by fear, Every way unbelief begets 
fear. 3f I deal with man I fufped: his conftancy, if with God 
his fidelity • the creature cannot, and God will not help me : 
either he makes no promife unto me ^ or if fo, why hath he not 
all this while performed it ? Had he meant me good, he would 
long ere this have done me good. 

Two things breed fear in man, inevidence of good, iwpro* 
b ability of good. 

Unbelief works on both thefe; take it at the beft, it looks 
on good from Gods gift and promife, onely as probable, per- 
haps I (hall have it, perhaps not, and now though there be fome 
hope, yet there is much fear : and take it at the worft, it looks 
on good as inevident, God will deny it, J (hall not have it, and 
now hope is peri(hed, and fean of want bre^k in like an armed 
man If by unbelief you fall off from your fuccours, you 
rhuft necefiarily fink down into your fears, extreme diftra&i- 
oes will be your companions where divine faithful promifes are 
not your ftaies and fupport. 

Secondly, Acquire and e xer xife fowe things , which mil en- 
^n" which g ^ e ^ H t0 trti ^ on **od f or tise continual fupfly ef jour 
will enable yovi^auts. 

to truft onGod. i . The firfl; and principal thing which I would commend un- 
Make i: evident to you, is this, Be feriovfly and ft e ad fa ft Ij indubious to make 
that God and - ( g roun dedly evident to your fouls, That God and you a*e in 
venan? *" "" cove " aHt an( * this may breed in you a confidence that you (hall 
not want. 

ZX*t/*Wreafonethfoin this place. Jehovah is my Shepherd, 
I fhall not want , q.d. The Lord is my God, he hath undertaken 
for me all my life, therefore I am not follicitous. Chriftians 


VcM. 1 fh all not want. 41 

arc exceeding faulty in this, tomakefureof Cod, and yet ic 
is the way to make Cure all his mercies. The Mathematicians 
mult have fome principles granted unto them- and if once you 
afTent unto thole truthes, they will thence infer many infallible 
and undeniable conclufions. Among Chriftians this fhould be a 
principle made firm that God is their Cod, and then they may 
quietly fu down, and confidently conclude all comforts for foul 
and body. Come unto a perfon under want and bid him to be 
of good cheer, God is Allfufficient, and hath promifed to with- 
hold nothing that is good, and he is faithful who hath promifed 
and cannot deny himfelf. Why I this is the anfwer, but wc 
doubt whether the Lord be our God, the father will be good 
to his children, and God will be faithful to them who are in 
covenant, but we doubt of our relation, and therefore fear our ^., 

fupplies. Therefore at length be wife and induftrious, it is 2 
thing poftible tocleer your intercft in God, and I allure you it 
is a thing that will be ufeful and comfortable unto you. They 
that know thy name, will truft en thte^ faid *David : He fpeaks 
(as I conjecture) of an experimental knowledge in fomeafts 
and fruits of Gods goodnefs. How much more if we knew 
that the Lord is our God, that Allfufficiency is ours, merciful- 
nefs it fclf is ours, faithfulnefs it felf is ours, (hall we both con- 
fidently and cheerfully repofe our felves on him > 

2, Meditate much on tie promijes of God and on his nature M^"«e much 
... „ -ii n . . of the Proml- 

and this may be a means to quicken your hearts to truft on him r f$j an a on hi$ 
that you fhall not want. nature. 

Give arguments and grounds for to excite faith and raifeit, 
A fheep cannot feed upon ftones, nor a man walk on the water, 
nor faith work without a foundation to ftand upon. Shew unto 
your fouls out of the word how good God is, and how ready 
to do good, how Allfufficient he is, and likewife how faithful 
to perform his word, how immutable God is and gracious. 
Then in your wants and occafions, work on thefe things, com- 
pcll your fouls to meditate on them and to draw out itrengch. 
It cannot be, that the Lord fhould leave me, or that I fhould 
want. He is an Allfufficiency , what (hall he lofe more now 
then ever by doing of me good? or wherein fhould he be lefs 
able to fupply me now then heretofore? if he gives not, his 
treafury is not encreafed j and if he give , it is not 

G there- 

4* I fha/l not want. Vcr.iT 

thereby dim inifhed. Y\t\s 2. loving G*di a Father. Why! I 
my felf am a father, and would help my child i fhould I acknow- 
ledge affections in man and deny them in God ? I have given 
toftrangers^nd will not God give to children ? who fhould 
the Lord be ready to help, if not his own people ? 

He is a faithful Gcd, I have his ttW,that hath been tried fe~ 
ven times • all his people in all ages of the world have found 
him as good as his word; it isimpofiiblethathewho hath pro- 
mifed fhould lie. I would not break my word, and fhall 
I think that God , that truth it felf cares not what he 

He is an immutahle God. I die^ faith fofeph y but Ged will 
furely viftt you. The heavens may crack a/under, and the 
world be refolved into nothing , Parents may forfake , and 
friends may be weary, and eftate may Tail , my frfb may fail, 
and my heart may fail, but God whets the ftrength of my heart 
tvillbe my portion for ever. 

O my foul ! how can it be that thou fhouldftwant > if it 
were an empty, poor, weak, thin creature thou were to rely 
on, then &c. But it is a Full, an Alifufficient infinite God 
and Goodnefs : Or, if it were one whofe eftate were large, but 
affe&ions ftreight . one great in power, but flow in love and 
ktndnefs, then , &c. But it is thy Father, as well as thy God ; 
thy Husband as well as thy Maker < thy moft merciful God, as 
well as thy moft powerful God, on whom thou art to depend h 
or if it were one fufficient for ability, and enclineable in affe- 
ction, yet unfaithful of his word, carelefs of his promife , 
whofe words were fmooth complements, and deceivable flatte- 
ries, and meer pretence*, &c. But it is a faithful God, One 
whofe expreilions are his real intentions, and have ever been 
fealed up with feafonable performances. 

Or were it one who for a timeonely ha*h undertaken thy 
fupplies till thou were of age, and ftrength and trading, but 
then would defcrt thee to thy own skill and faculty of provifion, 
thou fhouldft be his penfioner no longer, then the future 
times might juftly be looked upon with prefent fear of 

But thou haft a great God, a good God, a faithful God, an 
unchangeable God to caft thy fupplies on and that hath under- 

Vcr.i. 1 fl) all not want. 43 


taken thy fupplies, therefore fear nor, nor be difquieted, tn-ft 
on the Lord for ever, for in the Lord Jehovah is evtrL ft ifg 

1 . Lflfake nfe cf experiences and this alfo may be a means to y^ t u f c f 
enable you to truft on God for your fupplies. I he experiences pericne s. 
cf ethers, who have trnftcd in God, and itill found his provi- 
dent care. Your own experiences, how ofc lie hath prevented 
you with mercies unthought,unfought. Wilt not thou trull 
on him (till whom thou hail found to be thy friend, and thy 
fathers friend ? hath he done thee all this good, that now thou 
ffcouldft queftion his goodnefs, and fufped his faithfulnefs } Try 
his word feven times , it will hold, fee Pfal. 12. 6. and 
18. 30- 

4. Be careful to Vpalk. uprightly. Unevennefs is the path Be careful co 
for fearfulnefs: our eye will fail us, asoften as our foot deceiv- * s Ikuprifchdy, 
ethus-,No man can be fo throughly confident upon God, who 

hath been adventurous to fin againit God. A good God and a 
good heart can well meet and embrace each other, but finful- 
nefs takes off boldnefs. fVall^ before me , and he upright t and 
I will be God Allmighty to you-, tbats the Covenanc. A guil- 
ty heart is afraid ©f prefence, or elfe of acceptance • either to 
look on God, or that God will not look on it. Faith cannot 
work but upon a Promife, now the Promife is, that Gcdnill 
withhold no good thing f rim t him that walk, uprightly, Pia!, 
84. t 1 . Thou wilt never be able to outftand thy fears of want, 
if thou be not able to withftand thy delights in fin If (innings 
conquer our hearts, fears will conquer our faith. Cut he who 
cznvpjftj his hands in innocency^ may even go and corrpafs the 

No man is fo quiet in conference, fo free in prayer, fo cheerful 
in living, fo able in believing as the upright per fon 

5. *Be diligent <n your callings. He who eats the bread of B . ^ - [n 
idlenefs, may well refolve to drink the waters of carefu!nefs.y 0LU - CiV .j n , s . 
Times of idlenefs areufually the times of great temptations, 

or of doubtful vexations. When we are active in our callings, 
then God lets out our fupplies, and delivers them inc > our 
hands: but when we fit idly muling, then are we filled moftly 
with defires ofevil or wants of good ■, vain minds ha'ch nothing 
but vain fears or cares. 

G 2 6. I 


/ fhdl not want. 




6. Imiftht have added to thefe, more helps againft our un- 
believing fears of want, v.g. 

Th*nk,fulnt[s for what we have had, which is a method to, 
fetch in what we want ; no man rightly thanks God for a 
mercy, but ftores up another mercy by it. 

Contentment with our Condition : and earnefi And much 


Verf. 2. He maketb me to lie down in green 
<P a/lures $ He leadeth me bejtdes the ftill 

TH E former Verfe was a general! account or ie- 
fcription of Cods Paftoral care over his people, and 
this Verfe is a particular explication thereof, where- 
in you have; 

i. A J Efficiency of good which God provides for 
rfls^p,exprcfled in two terms, 7>aftures t waters. 

2. Ar (wveniencj of good which he provides, the Paftures 
bit green, and the Water* are JH?L 

3 . The Spring or caufe>of the one, and of the other. He 
mak*tk me to lie down T &c. He leader h me, &c. 

So then you have here all dm is requifite and defireable a- 
bput our conditions, vg. !" ^ 


Ver.2. Htmakcth mc folic dorvr>)&:c. 45 

1. Here is fulnefs [/Paftures and waters^ Failures alone 
are not enough for (beep, but they muft have Waters too. 
Waters alone are not enough, but they muft have paflures alfo, 
both are here conferred on David, ^pmfiurts^ and waters. 

2. Here is Goodneft. Though there be Paftures, yet if they 
be not wholefora , the fticep are not &d t but deftroyed by 

Though there be waters, yet if they be not ftill y but violent 
and turbulent, the (beep are not refreshed but overwhelmed by 
them • but green Paftures are beft to feed on, and ft ill Waters 
are belt to drink at •, and thefe, both thefc,in the goodnefs of 
them, as well as in the fulnefs of them. Not mecr Paftures, but 
green Paftures , not mecr Waters, but ftill Waters are provi- 
ded here for David. 

3. Here is rvell-pleafedtefs. Though we have Paftures, 
and fuch as are green •, and though we have Waters, and fuch as 
are ftill,yet if our minds, if our hearts be not ftilLbe not pleafed, 
be not delighted, be not content and quieted • if we have p'ea- 
fant eftates, yet not pleafed minds •, ftill waters, yet if not ftill 
hearts, &c. the barren Wildernefc is then all one to us, as the 
green Paftures ; and the dirty puddles, or violent torrents all 
one as the ftill and quiet waters ; if we cannot rc\ in the green. 
Paftures, nor drink at thefe ftill waters, where (hall we reft ? 
where (hall we dnnk ? 

But faith David, He maketh me to lie down, Ac cub are facit y 
quietly, thankfully, cheerfully to feed on thefe Paftures, and to 
drink ac thefe waters. I need not to murmur,nor yet to ftraggle, 
but God hach given me a good Eftate,and a fit mind for fruition 
of it. 

Out of all this there are thefe four Propofitions obferva- Proportions, 
b1e, viz,. 

1. That God doth provide enough, or fufrtciently, for his 
people [fPaftnres and Waters."] 

2. That God doth provide the beft of conditions for his 
people [green P 'a/I ures , and ftU 7 Waters .~\ 

3. That God doth accord the hearts and conditions of his 
people together [ He maketh me to lie deivn in green Pa- 
fthres, &c. 

4. That all the kinds of our good, wich the comfortable 



$6 Hemakctbmetolkdcwn^&tc Ver.2^ 

delights of them are from the Lord [ He mvkjth me. He 
leadeth me,~] 

For the firit of thefe I (hail but touch a little on it becaufe it is 
Virtually included in the laft Propofition which I obfervedouc 
of the former Verfe. 
Docl. That God doth provide enough , or Sufficiently for hi* pe^tli 

Gcd doth pro- Here David hath Pafmres and Waters . and they are as mnrh 
SSmk? the (heep doth need. Ifyou lock on copies of record orin- 
* ^ ftances in Scripture, you will fee the point fully cleared. Abra- 
ham, he had enough and enough, Gen i 3 . 2 .for he was very rich 
in cattel, in fiver, and in gold '. Ifaac the n>an waxed greit and 
went going (or went forward) and grew until he became very 
great • for he had poffeffion of flockj and potfefsicn of herds &c 
Gen.25. 1 3 ,t tfacob,hz had enough and to fpare,as you may fee 
in Gen 33.11. Take, I pray thee, my blefsing that u brought to 
thee, becaufe Gcd hath dealt gracioujly with me , and becaufe I 
have enough : who gives U4 all things richly to enjoy, 1 Tim 617 
Many more inftances may be given, but thefe are enough at 
once. & 

For the better Explication of it, thefe particulars are inqui- 
rable. ^ 

1. What and when it is enough, in refpeft of a mans con- 
dition ? 

2. Why the Lord provides enough for his people ? 
& Wherein this may concern us. ? 

condition ? 

Sol. For the Apprehenfion and Decifion of that , premife a 
few things. 

Eiwuth is a l ' An Sm »&K 1S ( in rhc general)* Medium -or middle eftate 

MediUmbe- 'tmxttwoextreamti There is an eftate wherein a man may 

twixctwocx- have too little, and that's Icfle then enough- and there is an 

trcmes. eftate wherein a man may have too much , and that's mere then 

euough- and there is a middle eftate 'twlxt thefe, wherein 

a man hath conveniency or fufficiency, and that's enough. So- 

lomcn himfelf doth thus branch it in Frov.30.8. Give me nei* 

ther poverty nor riches (J.) Neither too little nor too much, 

feed me with food convenient for me . that was enough. So 

then Enough, is when there is no defect, and no excefs ; when 


— *-— - — 

Vcr.2. Hcmaketh mctelic dorvn^fkc. 47 

there is not more then our condition requires, nor yet lefs. Like 
the gathering of the Manna, he that gathered much, had nothing 
over, an\ he wio gathered Irjfe , had nothing under. A bird hath 
two wings, iffhe had more they wouldbeanhinderance, if lefs, 
a want. 

2. Provifion may be efteemed enough, either to our Enoujb,is ci- 

1. Nature • which being purged or diieafe , and cortfidered ^] cr 

as a meer appetite, is fatisfied with little. ° 3Curc ' 

2. Grace 5 which qualifying and enriching the heart with fu- y Grace. 
pcrnatural excellencies and objects, enables a man to fay of leiTe 

then a little, it is enough. 

sj. Luft and Corrupt ten; of which we may fay as So/omonj Q ^ u ^ s 
did of the four things,The gr*vt y the barren ifmb\ the Earth 
and the Fire, they are never fatisfied, they fay not, It is enough, 
Pro.$o.i$ y i6. 

3. Enough to our Conditions is not to be judged by the Enou ^ to ou: 
quantity or number, but rather by the quality and effectual Conditions, 

Not fij the .Quantity, It may be enough, though a man hath jhis is nor 
crn eftate lefs then others, a man hath leggs enough, though not juiced by the 
fo many as an horfe. The mill may have water enough to drive Quantity, 
though it hath not the Se3. Thefhoe though it will not fit 
a gyant,yet it may be big enough for a child My eltate may not 
be fo high, fo pompous, fo abounding as another mans , yet it 
may be fuffkient for me. Nay, compare the eltate with it felf, 
it may be take« in much, it may be reftrained and fhortned, it 
may be much lefs t'r.en it hath been unto me, and yet it may be 
enough. If the cloke which hangs t© the ground, and the band 
which flotes down to the girdle were cropt and dipt, they may 
yet be fang enough. When Gideons thoufands were reduced 
to thr^e hundred, there were men enough for thefcrvice. So 
whenGodd th remit, or fink, or tap a mans condition, when 
he doth as it were, open a vein and let out iome of his abun- 
dance, yet t! ere may be blond enough, eftate enough left be- 
hind-, much ma} Le loll and yet enough ft; 11 remain. Bj , . . 

But by tile i Efficacy : And in this refpeft the ^usmyVnd 

fo ply or proviiior may be citeemed enough , when itisfuf-i-nWy. 
ficient. Whenfi! , 

i. TothePrefervAtiMGflife, of natural life: our Saviour : mcochc 

tails tift 

48 Henukethmeto lie down ' 3 &c. Vcr.z. 

calls it enough, if it be daily bread s and the Apoftle expounds 
it if it be jood and rayment. 
To the orcec 2# To tne or £ er or yi ace f nf e : That m ay be enough for one 
and place ot man ^ which is too much for another. CounfellorSjGuards^va- 
riety of attendance and of creatures,all chefe are but enough for a 
King,a great perfon-a greater degree is required to make enough 
for one perfon, in an order or place oflife then for another, fee 
in a low or mean condition •, a leathern (hoe may be enough 
for the foot } when yet a more coftly thing is but fit and conve- 
nient for the head. 
To the <*<■ cu* 3 • T° the execution of our duties in the courfe of our life : If 
tion ofourDu- there be fuch a ftormytempeft that the mill may be broken to 
ti<-sin the cours pieces, or but a meer breathing of the air that the fails will not 
of our life. Jn r . w hy h ere ' s too much and too little ; but when there is 
fuch a blaft as fets the fails on turning, there's enough. If in my 
courfe of life I have not fo much as hoyfeth me off from ferving 
of God-, nor fo little as denyes me power to fervehim, but I 
have that by virtue whereof I may well honour him in a diligent 
and faithful and cheerful difcharge of duties without any juft 
diftra&ion, I have then enough. When it is fufficient for the 
duties of my place, it is enough. 
for ap«Cons 4. For a perfons ability rightly to ufe and manage : A. difh 
ability rij»bdy f m [\^ ma y b e enough for a child who hath but a weak flomach 
to ufe and ma- ^ digeft, abundance may be too much for fome fpirits which 
n8 * c# are better able to command thcmfelves under a narrow then un- 

der an enlarged eftate. Though a Tradcfman hath not all the 
money in the City, yet he may have ftock enough. A mighty 
flock to fome men is but as a mighty bow to a child which he 
cannot bend nor ufe. So then God gives enough to his peo- 
ple (j.) fufficient for their prefervation, fufficient for their par- 
ticular (tation, fufficient for execution of duties , and fufficient 
for their ability rightly to ufe and imploy. 
Why will Goi ^But why will he give them enough or fufficient (J.) neither 
V vc <nouih ? t00 muc j 1 nor t00 jj tt j e So i j w jjj gj ve y OU t h e rea f ons of both. 
Not too little. _ T ... , 1 • 1 , J 1 

It would be a l • Hw**H not let hu people have too Uttle : 
wronj to him- 1. Becaufe this would be a wrong to himfelf he fhould be in- 
1 elf. jurious to his, 

To his Good- I# Nature: His Goodnefs and his All-Jufficiencj would 

" e £?. nd .- lofe much of their honour : What I good, and yet not good 

luttKieney. en0Ugh 

Ver.2. Hcmaketbmctolicdotvn&c. 49 

enough to his own I All- fufficient in himfelfand to others 1 and 
yet not a fufficiency to his own fervants ! keeps a full houfe for 
others, and will he not allow bread to his children ? 

2. Kindnefs and JfftEtion : Love is bountiful and liberal • x his kind- 
Put how will this found ? great love and no care! high af-rufs.andatfc- 
fe&ions, and yet not provide what is neceflary and fufficient .' &ion. 
Who will fay the father loves the child , or the husband the 

wife , when neither food nor rayraent are allowed unto 

3 . Truth and Fidelity : Have we not his bonds for what is To Wj trmh 
needful and what is good : Though his wifdom may fee fome- an d fidelity. 
what more, may be fomwhat too much, yet his faithfulnefs 

binds him to allow us what is enough and fufficient. 

I T; And a wron? to his pet fie : oceafionally it may through Ic wou!a b . e * 
their own infirmity and Satans fubtilty. pcop,?. 

• I. Di/pefe them to independance on Cod. Beg gers will not Difpofe them 
frequent the houfe where nothing is given, and we bring not to indrpen- 
our buckets to a dry ciftern. God fliould endanger all depen- *«« on Qod. 
dencc if he fhould rcftrain his hand in meer neceflaries ., men 
are not apt to believe that God will do much , who yet doth 
not mbminifter no not fufficiencies. 

2. And to indirett and irregular prattifes. Leaft I be poor^^ indired 
and ft eat, and take the name of my God in vain, Pro v. 3 0.9 Scant- * ni <"fl ulac 
ed conditions ufually occafion enlarged corruptions- ifGod prl 
will not help us, we are too apt to help our felves. If he puts 
not out his handof goodnefs,we are quick in thrufting forth our 
hand to wicked nefs. 

3. To extreme difiratliont. God would have his people to j extreme 
ferve him without fear, and to live upon him without care ; to diiUa&ions. 
mind their work, and leave their wages to him : but how can 

this pofiible be, if he did not give them enough ? Fears of wart 
will arifc if furriciencies be denyed, and cares will mulcip'y when 
a man hath not bread to eac, nor water to drink. 

4. To extreme difcoura^ements. They will have no heart jo extreme 
to ferve that God whom they cannot find good unto them : difaoursie* 
as God loves a chearful giver, fo he loves a chearful ferver • m<nts. 
we ought to ferve a good God with a glad heart, not penfively, 
dejededly, as if we were weary of his work. But if he will not 

allow his fervants doing his work cot fo little as will afford 

H ftrcngth 


He makethme u lie dwnficc. Ver.2. 

Ic would be a 
wrong to the 
Profrftion of 


ftrength unto them for his work , they muft ne.eflariiy either 
not ferve him at all,or eife with wearied and difcouraged fpirits , 
III. And a wrong to the Whole profeffion ofGodlinefs : Gene- 
rally men are of mercenary fpirits, they are not able co pry in- 
to the Arcana of Religion, to difcern the inward excellencies 
and the hidden comforts of it, but are led both in their opini- 
ons of it, and arTedionsunto it, upon fenfible and v fible moti- 
ons : If they fee wickednefs to flourifti, and godlinefs to pine ; 
profanenefs to abound, and godlinefs to want; an evil courfe 
to have enough and to fpare, and a good courfe to ftarve and 
famifli, they will readily judge that that which men call Reli- 
on and Godlinefs, how good foever it may prove in the rever- 
fion, yet for the prefent it is certainly the worft, and hardeft , 
and barrenneft fervice. God doth invite the finners of the 
world to abandon their ignominious and foul-deltroying cour- 
fes,and promifeth unto them a more happy change. Speaks un- 
co them at the leaft of fufficiencies and neceflaries , the wane 
of which if they ftiould difcern in his beft and mod faithful fer- 
vants, here were bar enough and fcandal. Not whatisfaid, 
but what thev fee doth moft move and arTed thefe. But God 
will honour himfelf, his Nature,all his Attributes • He delights 
in the dependance of his fervants, and in their regular courfe , 
and would have them to ferve him intend vely withoat diftra&i- 
on, and chearfully without difcouragements > and he ferioufly 
minds the honour of holinefs, and therefore at the leaft he will 
give what is enough and fufficient. 

2, He will not let his peipls have tot much neither. 
I. Becaufe if they have too miicb, perhaps he mi^ht have too 
He might have little. The Phyfitians fay, It is alwayes good foto eat as to 
too lijdc. rife with an appstite* God doth fo diftribute good to his, that 
they fhould ftili depend upon him for good : When the Ifrae- 
lites were full they kicked x and fir gate the rocl^of their Salva- 
tion. When the Proiigal hzd all the eft ate in h* own htnds, he 
prefently left his father. Cjive me nrt riches , left I be full and 
deny thse,andfay^ who is the Lird, faith Solomon, Prov. 30.8,9 
A great eftate is fe'dome without great pride. When the great 
dinner is eaten, men ufually bid Farewell, and take their leave. 
God hath leaft duty ordinarily from thofe on whom he confers 
moft plenty. 

N# too much 

Vcr.2. Hemakahmctoliedorvn,ikc. 51 

2. Becaufe, If thy fhould have too much they might have too They mijht 
little ; i.too little in Spirituals^ while they have too much in kavc l0 ° ii '-- !e 
temporals, too little in graces. The three children and Daniel 
thrived 'tetter With the Pulfe, then the rffi With the royal alltw 
twees. The (beep thrive beft upon the fhort mountains , and 
Graces moft in a moderate eftate . the long cloke hath tripe up 
many a mans heels. Humility is more low, and faith more 
high, and love more ftrong, and prayer more fervent, and duties 
more conftant, and the heart ufually beft and moll: heavenly in 
a time of mcannefs, then in a time of fulnefsand greatnefs O 
how hacdfomely have men rowed in a River, who have been 
caft away in a large Ocean. The Trier lookt very gentle and 
meek till he became an Abbot, and Julian was fbmewhat tole- 
rable till he became anEmpercr. Much earth ufually is a flamer 
to our earthly iufts , and a quencher of our fpiritual moti- 

2 In comfortsjxhen our graces finkour comforts doalfo fink- 
when our duties waver, our comforts do alfo vary and alter. 
No man can have more, er the fame degree of fpiritual peace 
and joy., whodecayes in the fpiritual (lock, or in the employ- 
ment and exercife thereof, I mean in his Graces. 

Too much may be a fnare to our Graces, and prove an heavy 
burden to our confeiences. Ergo: Other reafons might be ad- 
dedtoall thefe, to prove that God will give his people enough, 
( ./. ) Neither too much nor too little, but what is fuffici- 

1. He is Wife, wifdom gives what is bed, and what is fit - 

2. His people muft praife him, even for outward blciTing% 
Ergo, They mult have what is fufficient. 

Now let us come to the Application of this point Doth 
God provide enough, and what is fufficicnt for his people? Lfarn 
then they may learn, 

1. To be contented with their conditions: This is the very To be c^ 
inferenceof the ApoQle, 1 Tim 6.S. Having jeed andrafnfrnttiwUH cue 
let tu be therewith content ; (.i ) To bcwcll pleafed, to be fd conJiiiocs. 
tisfied •. not to grumble, and murmurc, and to be complain: 
and dill craving. Chriftians ought to pafs their conditions o • 
vcr with much thankful nefs to God, and much quietneft of fp;- 

H 2 nt, 

52 Hemakethrnetelie down y 8cc. Vcr.2, 

rit, and with much chearfulnefs of behaviour, every way to 
be contented, fince God doth , and wjl alwayes afford them 

Becaufe this is the moft proper life and beneficial that can be 
made of the Do&rine, I will therefore enlarge a little oq 

Confider therefore a few Particulars. 
You need no I. You need no more then enough : W n y ftiould ye not then 
more then (, e contented with your enough ? If you have more then you 
enough, can eat, why! that's taken away from your table > y if you have 

rayment more then you can wear, why / that's laid afide • its 
all one as if you had them not. Your fuperfluities are ufelefle 
and needlefs, like a crutch that a healthy man cares not for. Al! 
other things befides what is fufficient, are either for your Va- 
riety or for your Torment ^ ufually they are made the fervants 
offome luft, and the occafions of much fear. 
No more then 2 . N mare then enough u be fly You know the Proverb, E- 
cnoujhis beft n0U g n [ s as g ooc i as a f ea {t. when a man hath no more then 

enough, he hath that which is beft. 
¥or his Soul For ^M ^°^ : Great eftates are many times the bane of 
Souls. Rich men are apt to be high-minded, and Profperity 
breeds many times Apoftacy ^ of all Chriftians the poorer fore 
are ufually moft rich in Faith, in Zeal, in Fervency of Duty * 
they have moft leifure, and pleafure, and delight in converting 
with God. Solomon faith, That a mans abundance tyill not 
fuffer him tojleep. I may fay, in fome fenfe, It will not fuffer 
him to wake and work; a man can hardly bear great eftates 
and great duties together, 
^or his Body For his Body. Ask the Phyficians, What diet is beft? and' 
they will tell you, that Moderate dieta e(i optima. Look on 
the poor man who labours hard, and the rich man who lies ftilJ, 
or thofe that feed on fulnefs, or thofe who eat only the bread of 
fufficiency, thefe have more health, better colour, greater 
flrength, &c. 
Foe his Di- For hu delight and peace. We do exceedingly err, my bre-. 
% bc « thren $ when we match in our fancies great comforts and great 

eftates together. O, fay we, if we had fo great an eftateas 
fuch, we would live as merrily and at hearts eafe as they. But 
as the great Roman anfwered him who commended his new 
r - " w "" """ - ^ ec 

Vcr.2. Hemaketb me u lit dcwn^ &c. 5 3 

(hoe how neatly it did fit on his foot . but faid he, You do not 
know where it pincheth me. Or as the Emperor faid of his 
Crown when he lookc on it with tears, if you knew the cares 
of this Crown you would never ftoop to fake it up That fay I, 
You fee the oucfide of a greater eftate , but you do not fee the 
infide. You fee the field of corn, the high mountains, and low 
valleys, and great employments, but you do not fee the many 
thornes, and the many tempefts, and the many inundations that 
all this is fubjeft unto. How little fuch enjoy either God or 
themfelves , how often their confciences are wounded , their 
deep broken, their hearts (hot through and through with fecret 
fear and guilt. 

For his Acccmpts : We may juftly fay of enlarged eftates as For hJs Ac , 
we do of enlarged relations, if relations do multiply, obligati- C omp:s. 
ons do multiply • the (ingle man hith not fo many duties on 
him as the father, the mafter, the minifte:', &c. So if eftates 
beencreafed, our accounts unto God are thereby encreafed. 
To whom much is given, much more (hall be required: Your 
greater honours and greater wealth are a greater part of 
your ftcwardfhip, for which we muft be accountable unto 

Objett. Yes, will many fay, If we had enough we had reafon 
to be contented, but alas we have nothing. 

Sol. Who art thou that thus difputeft? good or bad . If 
Bdd % though thou hadft all the world yet hadft thou inerfed 
nothing, for number things by bleiling, then thou halt nothing. 
Nothing is left unto thee. 

But if thou be a German, aright Chriftian, why fayed thou 
then, That thou haft nothing ? There is no good man but hath 
in Spirituals that which is worth all the world. And fori; .v- 
tirnds y furely thou haft fomething. When didft thou fleep 
laft ? where didft thou lie lad ? was it not in thy own houfe ? 
what didft thou eat Lift? was it not food ? what haft thou now 
on ? is it not raymentr' how art thou a: this time ? why,0 Chn- 
ftian ! though God , and Chnft.and Grace, and Heaven be 
the chiefeft of things, yet in thy Arithmetick,are outward mer- 
cies, many outward mercies Ciphers only, to be reckoned as 
nothing? Is lodging nothing, houfe nothing, fleep nothing , 
food nothing,rayment nothing, health and ftrength nothing ? 


54 He maketh me to liedcwn^ &c. Vcr.z 

Obje l~t. True, they are fomething but not enough , had 
we enough of all the;e, or fome of thefe, then we had fomething 

Sol. And how much muft goe to make enough unto thee > 
Thou canft not acknowledg it to be enough, unlefs thou findeft 
it in variety and fuperfluity , but a good heart indeed, would 
confefs it to be enough if there were fufficiency. Thou haft 
enough for food, but not enough for furfet ; enough for ufe , 
but not enough for trouble • enough to further,but not enough 
. to hinder thee in thy Chriftian courfej and what hurt is 
this ? 

Objetl. But if I had as much as fuch and fuch I had e- 

Sol. I remember a (lory of a man whom S. Chryfcfiom did 
fain to be in prifon, O , faith he, if I had but liberty I would 
defire no more 1 he hath ic. O then, if I had but for neceflity ! 
he had it. O then had I for a little variety I he had it. O 
then had I any office were it the meaneft I he hath it. O then 
had Ibutamagiftracy, though over one town only! he hath 
it. O then were 1 a Prince, and then a King, and then an Em- 
teror , and then an Emperor of the whole world, and then , 
with Alexander, he weeps that there are no more worlds. 
He who faith not that fufficiency is enough, will never fay that 
plenty is enough. If thou hadita greatereftate, thou wouldG: 
have a greater hearc • the eye would not be fatisfied with fee- 
ing, nor the ear with hearing. He is happiest uho needs but 
little-, and he who hath moft, hath with all, this unhappinefle , 
that there is no certainty of keeping, nor no meafure in his de- 
Vfe 2. A fecond V\e therefore (hall be of Dinilion unto us to get 

tor Dirc&icn thofe Qualities which may enable us to fee when we have e- 
nough, and to overcome thofe qualities which are never fa- 
Gccrhofc q^- i. To get thofe quaiites which will make us cordially toac- 
lulesthicmil knowledg that we have enough \ viz. 

make us con- r j n g enera ] # fjolinefs f ^ eart w 11 quickly difcern enough 

Holintis of or ^ c ' e n c y m tne eHate. There are two things which a wick- 

fecan. cd heart cannot find •, It cannot find excellency in Spirituals , 

nor fttfficiwcy in Temporals. Till the heart be taken up with 


Ver.2. Hemsikethmetolie down, &c. 55 

God it cannot reit quiet with temporal pofleflions. It cannot 
limit it felf here, until it be limited by him who is unlimi- 

A good God, and a good heart, and a little of ontward e- 
ftate will go far. Little is a Sufficiency to him who with it en- 
joyes an All-fufficiency. Therefore get an holy heart- thou 
doll hereby procure a tranfeendent cilate in r.eaven , andal- 
wayes a fufficient eftate on earth. Godlinefs is that which 
works contentment,and contentment is that which makes us fee 
that we have enough. Men do but puzzle, and maze, and dif- 
quiet themfelves with endlefs craving of earthly things , until 
they partake of God and holinefs. The more holy a man grows 
the more he is in heaven-, and the more heavenly the foul is , 
the Iefs need it fees of worldly things. A whole world will 
notfatisfie a worldly fpirit, but little of this is enough to him 
who defires and drives to feed his foul more then his body. 
In part cular get thefe Graces, v. g. 
I. An exceeding love of heavenly things : Why is it that ma- An exceeding 
nyHeroickfpirits have trampled upon all the world, and re- } r/ j 0t hc,vca " 
jefted them as drofs and dung : That they have changed high y tfa,n = s - 
eftates for low, and rich eftates for poor ; Mofes chafe affl tli* 
on* with the people of God, rather then the honour of t'^e Court. 
Surely they did kt the higheft eftimations and affections on 
Gods favour, on Chrift, on heavenly things. That which can 
enable a perfon to become nothing, and to be content with the 
lofs of all worldly thingsjo that he may enjoy God and Chnit, 
that fame will more ea(ily enable him to be fatisficd and con- 
tented with a little, much more with a fufficiency •, It is enough 9 
Jofeph my fen u yit alive ; (aid loving Jacob. And, let trim 
take a/l, fince my Lo*d the King is come again fold Aiephibofbeth. 
io the Chriftian, It is enough, God is mine, and Chriftismine, 
I have him whom my foul lovcth, and any thing now is enough. 
Love of heavenly things ever drowns and fvvallows the delirt or 
earthly things. 

z. Humblentfs of H>art : Look on all perfons blazoned in Humbknefid 
Scripture for humility, and you (hall find them acknowledging hcart * 
and blefling for a fufficiency, ?*c*6 t David l Paul. According as 
the heart is,fo is the cllate to the heart. A great veflei milt hwt 
much ;;ater to fill it,but a little wttox will fill a 1 cclc veflH 


56 HemAkctbmctoliedoPW^&c. Vcr.2 

If the heart be great , 'tis not eafie to define what will 
be enough unto it, but a i.ttle eftate is fufficient for a little 

There are three things which Humblenefs enables one unto ; 
to fee even little mercies,to bkfs for all mereies,to be contented 
with any mercy. 

S lf-d ' 1 3 * tyf'd***** •' You fee that a man that hath af petit urn ca 

fiinum, endlefs in eating, unfatiable after all feedings, a difeafe 
called the wdf % a ravening appetite: If this difeafe were re- 
moved, a letter quantity by far were enough for that mans fto- 
mach. There are in every man natural necefTities , and preter- 
natural necefii ties ^ natural defires and corrupt defires. Corrupt 
defires arc like fome womans longings f rilled with vanity and 
alfo with variety.Our lufts alwaies put us upon a greater expence 
to fatisfie tbem,then our natures. If then you would behold an 
enough to your conditions, ftrive much to deny finful fancies, 
finful arTed:ions,Gnful cravings,which are like fome beggars who 
will never be ferved. When a man hath many mercies and 
comfotts yet he is unquiet, he muft have more, for more eafe , 
for more vanity, for more bravery • till this man can deny the 
motions, fancies, importunities of his corrupt heart t he will 
never have enough. 

faith. 4. Faith. It hath two properties; one to make us unfatif- 

fizble about the things of heaven : another to make us quietly 
cheerful With any condition on earth. In fpirituals, faith gives 
fcope to the heart, but in temporals it bridles and moderates. 
Faith will ether fee food enough or fawce enough; eicherit 
fpreads our table with the creatures, or elfe with Gods loving 
kindnefs in Chrift, which is a good meal. If a Chriftian could 
attain unto two things, he would fay, I have enough. One is ?f 
his heart could fubmit to Gods provident difpenfation. Ano- 
ther is, if his heart were afliired of future provision. Now faith 
works both of thefe. Ftrft, it fubmics my heart to my prefent 
condition, it feeth the wifdom and goodnefs of God in any 
eftace be it never fo mean , that divine providence fets it out for 
me, and faith, There is this day thy daily bread. Secondly, it 
b ears up the foul for the future, feeing a fpring in providence , 
and an undertaking not only for one day, but for all thedayes 
of our lives.There is a market every day of the week for a Be- 
liever. Thefe 

Vcr.2. HemaketbmctoliedotM^&c. 57 

Thefe arc the fpecial Graces which will make us fatisfied even 
with a little, and mil to find enough. 

To which let me add fomc gracious confederations, properly Gncicas Ccn- 
and ufefully adjuvant to the fame end, v. g. luxations. 

1 . Often confider hoft ttnVeorthy a creature thou art. A deep Conlidtr, How 
meditation of our fins avails much to a further mortification of unworth y * 
our linful defires : when I confider how many my fins are, and c * atBre l ou 
how hainous, and how meritorious, I rather wonder that I am 

not in Hell then on Earth- I rather admire that I have any 
mercy, then fo little. Ah brethren, he who deferves every mo- 
ment to be fentenced into hell, hath reafon to fay, It is mercy 
enough that I yet live, and have time granted to prevent that 
fentencc. He who deferves not a bit, not a rag, not any breath- 
ing, not any good, may fee occafion and confefs, OLord! I 
have enough (who though I have forfeited every mercy, and 
deferved every mifery) yet I have health, I have food, I have 
raiment, I have many ,many daily mercies. Obfcrve it expe- 
rimcntally,when any perfons are touched with a deep meditati- 
on of their fins, the leaft mercy will feem mercy to them • O I 
it is well, rt is mercy, it is enough, God deals exceeding grati- 
oufly with me, it is more then I ceuld exped, it is as much as I 

2. Often confider, how changeable thefe outward things are :How change- 
The greater quantity is fubjed to as much vanity, and to the ablc thc . Ie ouc * 
fame uncertainty, as a moderate allowance. He who hath thou- m: * thm5S src 
fands may fee them fmoaking away as foon as he that hath but 

(hillings and pence ; and ufually the higheft conditions are mcit 
hazarded with alterations. 

I fee no difference 'twixt a large and moderate condition but 
this, That in the one a man is like a Traveller on the land, whom 
now and then a thief may affault and furprife ; in the other, he 
is like a Ship richly laden at fea, which either the roving Pirats. 
or the violent Tempefis, or the fokmg Sands, or the fplitting 
Rocks may in a moment (hiver to pieces. But both are like t 
cloud, which may be quickly driven • or like a flower , which 
may be quickly withered , evcnapolie of flowers may wither 
as foon as one naked flower. And why then, O my foul I 
fhouldeft thou drive for great things, and not reft fatisfied with 
any thing ? when as every thing here below is too mean for>« — ^ 

I thy 

58 HemAkethwetolie dotvn&c. Ver.2. 

thy dignity , too weak for thy fafety , too uncertain for thy 
How little aid \a . Often remember,^ little did fat is fie thee hertofare. The 
facisfic tbes t j m e was, how thou didft ferve God day and night with many 
hcretofoie. tears, fervent prayers, affectionate obedience • and aifo didft 
chearfully go on in the difcharge of thy particular calling, whea 
thou hadft not comparably fo much as now thou haft. There 
was not that eafmefs of lodging , that fairnefs of habitation , 
thatdaintinefs of feeding, that foftnefs of clothing. Why L 
was little, very little, very well and enough then? and is not 
much, very much a fufficiency and enough now ? Could 1 eat 
and blefs then , fhould I feait and vex now? could adifhof 
green herbs fatisfie heretofore^and (hould not plenty be enough 
at this time ? Surely>0 my heart I thy allowance was enough 
at the loweft, and when God hath more enlarged it, doeft thou 
now well, more and more to difpute it, and cavil at it ? O my 
unthankful heart ! The portion of God is fufficientjy good a 
only thou, thou art degenerately vile and bad. 
The foormefs 4- Often ponder / he fbortnefs of thy life I What a ftirr is 
of thy life. here I and infinite reaches after a kw more fhadows L O how 
a man contrives, drives, ftirs, (rretcheth body, foul, conscience, 
all, to enlarge his treafures , and in the midft of all , the great 
God gives a commifiionunto Death, Go, ftrike him, take him 
HucHofa*. fptedilyoutofthe land of the living- and this man dies, and 
-gives up the Ghoft, and where is he }■ where is his foul ? where 
are his projects ? where are his greatneflfes? You fee how 
much he leavs behind, the comfort, benefit, ufe whereof he ne^ 
ver had • the leaft of the leaft of the mod he had , had been e- 
noughfor him, and many more whofe lives are fo fuddenly 
(truck ofTas his* Well, let it fink into you • a little meat is 
enough for a weak ftomach, ftnuch turns not into nouriftiment 
but difeafe) and a little eftate may be enough for a little time : 
Our life is not long, it is but a fhort Tale quickly told, we muft 
part with every thing, "Taul makes that a reafon tbatwc 
fliould be content with any thing, t Tim. 6. 6. 
Theeftatesand ' %• Frequently i 'soever the efi ate s and behaviours of ethers \ 
behaviours of far beyond thee in Grace , far below thee in Plenty: Their 
©;hcrs. charge is far greater , their revenue is far ihorter h thefe have 

mny children, thou haft but few v they have little eftate, thou 


Vcr.2. Hemakttbmctoliedorvn>&c. 59 

haft much ; they feed together, they pray together, they blefs 
together, they chearfully blefs God for their enough. Should 
poverty fay, It is enough ? fhould meannefs fay, It is enough ? 
and yet plenty complain, and yet abundance grudge, and be un- 
fa tis fie d. 

6. Once more: Be able to fee that though there be not much T hough ch^re 
in thine own hands , yet there is exceeding much in thy fathers bc # n ° r - ^uch in 
hands. Thou haft not all thy eftate at once • it may be enough [ ^ * % cc n therc 
unto any that when he hath dined, there is one preparing again i s muc h i n tDy 
for his fupper. fathers hands. 

Secondly, To overcome thofe unfatis fed qualities which know j^efe unfatii- 
no meafure, nor when it is enough. fied valines ' 

You will never be able to fee a fufficiency in your conditi-muitbeover* 
ons, till thofe finful qualities be mortified. I will mention fome comc - 
of them. 

i • One is Covetoufnefs • this is like the Grave , which never Covetoufnefs 
faith, It it enough. Or, like Solomons horfe- leach, which cries , 
Give, give, Prov.30.15. The Apoille prayes the Hebrewes to 
be content with fuch things as thtj have ; but how might this 
be learned ? Why, faith he, let your convention be without co- 
vttoufnefs,Heb.i$.$. Covetoufnefs is nothing elfe but an 
impotent and boundlefs appetite that can neither ufe whatic 
hath, nor put a period to what it delires ; but as in the fea, one 
wave rifeth above another, fo here every defire of having is out 
gone by a new defire of getting. If you could melt the hea- 
vens into gold, or the elements into filver, and eft ate the cove- 
tous man into all the dominions of the world, yet his greedy 
foul would never fay, Forbear, it is enough. But as the fifties 
are (till fucking and drawing in even in the vafteft ocean, fo the 
covetous fpirit is ftill panting, complaining, gaping, grafping, 
griping in the fulleft condition. 

Non quod habet numerat, tanttimcjue non habit, oft at. 
Poor man who knows no God but earth, enjoyes neither God 
nor earth, his only happinels is a fancy of what he wants,and his 
great mifery that ilill he delires that which wil never fatisfie his 
delires. Well then, if ever you would come to fee a fufficiency 
and an enough in your conditions, befeech the Lord to keep 
your hearts from covetoufnefs. If your afTe&ions be only for 
earth, you will never have inough of earth. 

I Z z.EmH- 

60 UtmAksthmetolie down^&c. Vcr.2. 

Emulacionand 2. Emulation and E»vj. This is one of the great fins and 
Env y* an expenfive fin, and a fin which makes us to exceed our condi- 

tions. It is generally with us as with thofethat run in a race, 
who look on thofe before them ^ fo do men and women fix their 
eyes on others beyond them in place and condition, they muft 
feaft as others, be- apparelled as others.go,and fpend like-others. 
People count it a difgrace in any thing to fall lower then others 
in their places, and then no marvel they have noc enough, when 
more then their eftates is vainly mifpent in an expenfive emu- 
Intemperance 5, To which we may add another fin of Intemperance and 
and Luxury. Luxury , wherein perfons faeririce large eftates to their belhes 
and appetite. It was fpoken (I think) of our Nation, That we 
build as if wefhouldlive for ever, and eat as if we fhould die 
prefently. It was a lingular Encomium which Erafmtts gives 
of the life of S. Jerome y that maxima pars dtbetur ftudio, mi- 
nima fomno^ minor cibo^ nulla otio. But with us it is quite con- 
trary, fleeping , and eating, and drinking devour moft of our 
lives and eftates. The Athenians fpent moft of their time ir> 
telling of news, and fome of this City all their time in feafting 
and caroufing. If Chrifttans were wifely Parcimonious, they 
might find time enough for their fouls , and ellate enough for 
their bodies; but while they live only to eat, they eat out all 
their livings. 

* We do not drink to fatisfie thirft, nor eat to fatisfie hunger , 
but fhameful fpewing is in our feafts, and,as if Sardanapalus or 
Heliogabaltts were (till alive ^ we devife choice of dainties, and 
fo to fatisfie a fenfual appetite, we at once crack our fouls , and 
our bodies,and our eftates,in a moment wafte all. Had we Re- 
man appetites and Chriftian diligence, we might have enough 
not only for neceflity butalfo for charity. 
Pride and Va» 4. 7>ride and Vanity. God gives a man enough if he be 
R ty humble and fober • but when can a vain mind fix , or a proud 

and haughty fpirit fettle ? Thou haft enough for thy condition, 
but not enough for thefaftiion. When vulgar People will infi- 
nitely fweil above their places and ranks, as if they were the 
children of Kings,adorn themfelves with Diamonds and Rubies, 
and Pearls,and with the moft coftly apparel- this is onefamongft 
•thereof th« reafon* why fo many Citizens crack and M\ An 


Vcr. 2 . He maketh me te lie down^ &c. 6 1 

ordinary Citizen who is newly fct up,and might have had enough 

for the fupporc of him and his, on a fudden fhrinks into nothing, 

and what's the reafon? only Pride and Vanity. The needl efs 

Jewels, and the fuperfluous Ornaments , and the incongruous 

drefllngsand attirings,ifthey had been (pared , there had been 

now food and raiment left • but pride is a coftly fin , and the 

high way tobeggery., courfer garments, diet, lodging would 

ierve thee and thine very well. 

%. Scmtfecret haunts of clofer tranfqrtfsions are likewife the c ' , 
r i r i_ ? • i. r i ^ oinc toft 

realon why many cannot lee enough. As inordinate (ports where haunts of clofer 

men venture all that God hath given them upon the caft of a rnnfjrtfli.r,* 

die, or throw of a bowl ; and which is worfe, they make their 

eftates to bear up their fin of Vnclear.mfs, not knowing thac 

this is the way to bring them to a morfel of bread. All thel'e 

(ins are of fuch a malignant influence to a mans eftace, that if he 

hath much they will bring it to a little, and if ht hath little they 

will bring it to nothing • fhamc and infamy, wan: and poverty, 

are the jutt returns and fruits of them. 

6.1 might mention more fins which will not let us fee that it is 
enough, as ai'coxtentednefs, ttnthankfnlricfs, p<tfsionAte frvward- Dlfconrentftf- 
*f/}, &c. all which are a cloud to darken the goodnefs and fuf- ntfs,Uatfaank- 
flctency of our eftates : would we pray earneftly to the Lord - fidnefs. 
and wreftle with him, and never give over until lie had fubdued 
thefe vile and iinful qualities, wefhould find that God dide- 
nough for us, and clearly acknowledge that only our Lufis, not 
Eft.itcs did want. 

If God gives enough to his people, then they may bead- Vfei>, 
vifed, Of Ad vie. 

i. Diligently to ferve him h to expend themfelve> totally in y n .- frvc Gp(J 
hisfervice: they need not diftract themfelves with fears nor Diligently. 
cares • hath not God given unto them enough > And why doth 
he give them enough , but that without detraction or difcou- 
ragement they might intend his glory in the duties of their ge- 
neral and particular callings. 

2. Cheerfully to ftfffi him. Sufficiency fhou'd produce a!a- Cheerfully, 
crity. Thy mafter is a good mafter, while thou art doing (,f his 
work,he allows thee enough.and when thou haft done his work- 
he will beftow on thee an exceedingly exceeding weight of 

$. Only 

g 2 He maketk me to lie down Ver.z. 

Onely. 3. Only tofervehim. As thou fhalc have no eomfort , fo 

thou haft no need to fupply thy felf by any indirect or wicked 
wayes. Should a lie be found in thy mouth for gain ? or for- 
did flatery in thy carriage for advancement ? there is no need 
ofthefe, thou art well^hyGodisAll-fufrlcient and hath given 
fufficiency to thee. The treafures of wickednefs will quickly 
fail, but a little (hall hold out long enough to him who dares 
to truft and ferve a God. 
Vfe 4. Here are we all informed to go into the way of getting Enough, 

Togo imo the It is the common voice, Jf we could have but enough, wewould 
way of getting defire no more. Wouldft thou indeed have enough .? why I 
enough t | ien g Ct tne £ or d tQ y e tty Shepherd, and befeech him to make 

thee one of thefbeepofhis pafture ; all hislheep are cared for, 
he provides enough for them. While the Wolves and Dogs 
range and hunt up and down, the fheep are quietly feeding -, 
give up thy felf in Covenant unto God and he Will be alifuffici- 
ency to thee. 

Thus much for thefirft propofition,That the Lord provides 
paftures and Waters for his people. Now I proceed to the fe- 
cond, which refpe&sthe quality of this provifion, green Pa- 
ftnres, not paftures only, but Green paftures- not waters only, 
■but Still waters, this is the goodnefs of Gods provifion for them. 
Hence obferve, 
DqB.2. That m God provides a full eftate,fo the be ft eft ate for hisftoc\ 

As God V ' w people. Paftures, which are Green, and waters, which are 
vides a full e- Still. As Abraham though he gave gifts unto the children by 
ftatcfothe t>eft t j ie Concubines, yet he gave the Inheritance to hlsfon Ifaac -, fo 
cftate for bis tnoU gh God doth give many things to other men, yet he gives 
pcop C ' the beft things unto his own people. In V/i.25.6. Their pro- 

vifion is called a Feaft of fat things, a feaft of wines en ths Lees-, 
of fat things full of marrow, oftyines on the lees well refined. A 
Feaft is nothing elfe but the choieeft dainties of a market, 
and in the chiefeft feaft you cannot exceed the chiefeft 
things to be eaten , and the choieeft things to be 
drunk. Here is Fat and Marrow, and here are Wines well re- 
fined •, in a word, here is the beft of all provifion. In J fa 26.2. 
There is mention of a Vineyard of red wine ■, Wine for the fweet- 
nefsof it, red wine for the choicenefs of it, (it fignifies a gene* 
rousandafparkling Wm€)^ni^Vinejardofthisht the fulnefs 


Ver.2. InGreenpaflures. 6$ 

and largencfs of it. And a Marriage Feafl, Mat. 22. not a fur 
neral fcaft. What (hall I fay morcPin PfaJ.i6.tf. their provifion " 
IS called ? leaf ant places, and a goodly heritage. The lines arc 
fallen unto me in pleafant places . yea, I have a goodly heritage. 
The lines (i.e.) The poiTeiTions, are fallen unto me (by a blef- 
fed and good providence,) in pleafant places, in amcenu^ or ju- 
cWw-Jhave a goodly heritage /pecioj am h&reditatemf, very fair 
eftate. And in Pfa.84.l1.Gpd thmks nothing too good for them, 
they (hall have £r*cf and glory, and if there be any thing elfe 
which is good, that's theirs. Grace is the beft thing on earth, 
and Glory is the higheft thing in heaven: both are theirs , and 
if there may be fuppofed any other thing that is good, No good 
thing mill he withhold from them: Thus for the point in general. 
Now for the particular difcovery of it, thefe inquiries muft 

1. Of what eftate and condition this is averred ? 

2. In what refpefts the eftate of the people of God 

is beft I 

3. Why fo ? 

4. Then the ufeful Application of all this to our 


Slue ft. 1. Of what eftate and condition this aflercion is aver- 
red } Of what cftate 

Sol.To omit many things there is a three- fold cftate of Gods :his is mnedi 
people : 

1. Their Spiritual eftate. 

2. Their Glorious eftate. 

3. Their Temporal eftate. 

I. Their Spiritual eftatt COnflftsof an holy Union with God Ofrhrir Spiri- 
iaChrift- in which they are partakers of the Divine Nature , CUildiiein 
and receive the firft fruits of the Spirit. All thofe eiTcntial gra- 
ces which make them to exceed evil men as much as reafon doth 
make men to exceed the beafts that perifh. Take all the wick- 
ed men in the world, they fall totally (bort of the weakeft godly Spiritual Gn - 
man in fpirituals, for either they are utterly without God(their c:s * 
minds being darkned, and hearts feared, and fenfes reprobated) 
or elfe thofe gifts and fpiritiul abilities which they have, are no 
way comparable to thofe of the truly godly. The knowledge 
rfthe Tharifees did but puff chem •, the knowledge of the Difcir 


£ a He m&ktth me to lie down % Vcr.2. 

pies did humble and guide them. The faith of Simon lMa?u* 
it differed in the very formal nature of it, from the faith of Sil 
mon Peter ; the one was raifed upon fight, and neceffary con- 
viction • but the other was raifed by, and founded upon Jefus 
Chrift. The repentance of Judas was far (hort of the repen- 
tance of Peter t fudas's repentance was but terror and defpair, 
but the other was converfion,andmixt with faith. 

None of them all have that really holy and new nature 
whereef every godly man is a partaker, and therefore in Scri- 
pture, the worft of them are called Swine, and < E>oggs % and 
Wolves,ivA Lions, ixA the heft of them are called Foxes and 
Serpents , yet are they all beads : they have either a profefled 
want of an holy nature, or eife but the profcfilon and (hew of 
it : and the fub fiance which the godly have, my ft needs be bet- 
ter then the flado-w which the wicked have. And as the people 
©f God have the beft in fpiritual graces, not an hiftorical faith 
onely, but a \uftifjing which is better : not trouble *f conference 
onely, but Godly forrow which is better: not defpair for fin, 
but recovery from fin, which is better : not a fhadow but the 
very quality of ail faving graces which is beft of all : fo they 
Spirit, ptivi- have the beft in fpiritual priviledges, they are fons, they are 
legts. beires, they have fuch liberties, and immunities which no evil 

man hath-, no wicked man is fo freed from the law, nor from 
wrath, nor hath that liberty of accefs unto God, &c. 
Spir. comforts. Yea and the beft in fpiritual comforts : all the comforts a- 
bout the foul in evil men, are but an active delufion of the De- 
vil, or pafHve ftupidity of their own fpirits, Et tanto pejer 
quanto infenjibilior : faith Saint tsfvftin in i 7 /. 55/>. 375.. 
Edit. Baftl. 

But of this there is little or no queftion, fave that fome 
would of late make us believe that Reprobates and Elect, good 
men and bad , may go hand in hand for all forts of Graces, and 
to differ onely in the bufinefsof perfeverance k :'they forget that 
"the Scriptures fpeakof hypocrites a? well as of Apoftates. 
£! hc . , m 2. Their glorious eft ate ubeft : Of this there is no doubt by 
rious cfU:c an y Chriftian Spirit, their glorious eftate is better thea their 
Spiritual eftate on earth, and therefore much better then any 
temporal condition whatfoever. In faeaven they (hall need no 
temporals , and there all their fpirituals are perfe&ed. 


Vcr.2 . in Green Pajlnres. 6$ 


Cleereft knowledge, not dimme or in part, as here below. Pureft 
lovf t not mixt, as &c. Fullefl union,, not interrupted as here 
below. Higheft joy, not broken, as here below • whereas the 
wicked (hall in hell more perfect their fins, and moreencreafe 
their damnation and mifery. 

So then God provides the beft of conditions for his people, 
if you lpeak of the fpiritual, or of the heavenly condition ^ if 
Grace be the brighteft Star on earth, or Glory the faireft Sun in 
the firmament , then Gods people furpafs all in thefe re- 

3. Their Temporal efiate confifts of the outward things of or their 
this life, wherein alfo the people of God have the beft: I do not poralcftuc. 
fay they have the greateft, but they have the beft. When Jacob 
and his family came down into Egypt they were feated in the 
land of Ramefes y in the befl of the land^ Gen.47. 1 1 . and after- 
wards when they encreafed unto hundreds of thoufands, they 
were planted in (fancun the choiceft foil in the world, 4 land 
flowing with milh^ and hone* and wherein they were fed with the 
kidneys of wheat y or with the tops or fineit of wheat. 

Obj. Thefe initances are peculiar. 

So/. Pfal. 37.16. Better is the little of the righteous ', then the 
plenteous Manors or riches of any wicked : I know that this 
part will feem a very Paradox unto you, and therefore I will 
defcend unto the fecond enquiry which being refolved will yield 
light unto it. 

£ue(r. 2. In what refpect the condition of Gods people for , . . a 
temporals is beft? £S£5&2 

r 1 j n j- e ■ -r t r • i tne:r on^noii 

For the undemanding of it premife thefe particulars •, for t mporals is 

1. If you judge of Befl by ^Mcfl of the fame kind, it is not btft. 
affirmed by way of individual comparifon that the temporal Noc beftbe- 
eftate of a godly man is beft. Dives had more then Z,.***rw, caulc mol * # 
and the rich Fool, then the poor Difcip/es : but quantity is no 
argument or touch-ftone for excellency: the jewel is lefs in 
quantity then the free-ftone , and yet much more excellent and 


2. If you judge of the beftnefs of condition by fen ft andN° c ktftr<> 
the eftimation of Worldly wen, who can in earthly things fee|J? C, 2? Si rf 
nothing but the earthlinefsof them • it is likewife granted that ^world^r 
thofe iniq «j tftimatoresi blind arbitrators do caft and rejetf the men. 

K tern- 

66 He tnaketh me to lie down Vcr, 2 

temporal condition of good men, as we do gold becaufe it is too 
1 ght, and wants bulk and weight 

A Temporal condition wherein a man may get as much as 
ever he can, (though de mod? & de medio all be challengeable) 
this feems beft in thedazledeye,andfalfe fcale of a worldly 
Not beftin an 3' If you judge of a beftnefs in an ab[olute comparifon to alt 
abloia-ecotn- other things what/ 1 ever - 9 fo the temporal condition of Gods 
parifon to all people (even in their own judgments) is not beft, they do prize 
other thirds. q j s f avour< anc [ chrift, and Grace, and Glory better, 
up &c C U ^ uc * n a C0()rdmate comparifon, in a comparifon of things in 
the fame order i.e. compare the temporal eftate of the people 
Bat for quality °f God, with the temporal eftate of wicked men : for thequali- 
they have the ties, the people of God have ever the beft. And that I fhall 
belt make evident by many inftance?. 

... 1. Their waters come out of the fweetefl S fringe and their 

come ouVofcbe Ei ^ ates come out °f the beft hand • the droppings of a Spring, 

fwettcJt Spring. are teeter then the flo wings of the Sea. The gleaning of the 

grapes of Ephraim^ is it not better then the Vintage of sAbit^er* 


The eftate of evil men (look on it at the beft) is but the fruit 
©fa common providence: but the eftate of the godly, is the 
gift of fpecial love and favour, an eftate and a loving pardon- 
ing God too. It comes from a reconciled God, as well as from 
, a bountiful God, from a Father as well as from a Creator. Now 
any eftate coming from a God reconciled unto us is beft. The 
loving kindnefs of God doth raife the eftate above all, it raifeth 
it above life, which is the beft of all temporal eftates, Pf. 63.5. 
When Ahafuerni was difpleafed with Hama* y all his honours 
and wealth were bitter unto him. A fmall thing given by a 
King out of a gracious affection, preponderates the largeft con- 
dition which lies under his wrath. 
Their tempo*- 2. Their temporal eftdte be it never fo little, is more fanftified 
ral condition \% An d blefted ; and therefore it is beft. When God communed 

«7wc"cd. ifiCd with Ahraham fop the beft of § ood thin § s > he doEh n0E fa ? in 
giving, I will give unto thee, but in bleffi^^ I mllbhfs thee: 

and thou (halt be a bleffing. An eftate unbleft, is like meat that 

is raw, of which the more a man doth eat, the more he doth 

endanger his life: or like the corn in the ear, which if a man 


Vcr.2. m Gran Paftnrcs. 6j 

Avallows, it may choke him. Sodom Teemed more plcafar.t 
and rich , but fire and brimfton rained on it . lb &c* 
Our fins have fowen a curfe and a fnare through all outward 
things, and there they flick untill a divine benediction doth 
weed them out and winnow them as it were: A wicked man 
though he hath a fuller table, yet it is a fnare ; and though he 
fills his mouth, yet the wrath of God may go in with the meat • 
he hath the curfe and the vexation of the creatures, with the 
poifeflionof the creatures. But the eftate of the righteous, 
It may be faid of it what Ifaac faid of Jacobs garment, It is 
like a field which the Lord hath b/ejfed. They have the inheri- 
tance and the blefling too. He b/cjfeth the habitation of the 
juft y Prov.3.33. EJ ah had an eftate fair enough left unto him, 
but Jacob had a lefs eftate, yet a better, becaufe he had the blef- 
ling with it. One draught of cleer water is better then a Sea of 
brackifhand fait water. 

3. That eftate is be ft which is bi ft tiled. If a man hath n °t xheir tftjee \% 
a heart toufe the eftate, but keeps it onely as a prifoner ( pec*- fc c ft u f c j 
mamfttamdicttnt cfuam veltit alienam domi claufam follicito 
labore cuftodiunt) or if he doth ufe it but then in a (infill way 
(bona appellant ex quibus nttllns Mis ( nift ad res mains) n[tu *c>pr.Ep. *• 
eft* *) which is a furtherance not a hinderancc to good ; wicked p 7. 
men have golden fetters. He falls infinitely fhort of him,who 
though he hath a letter eftate for the abundance, yet hath a bet- 
ter eftate for the ufe and improvement. 

Now evil men for the moft part cither have no heart at all to Sibil, 
ufe their eftate, they onely are the Jaylors of mercies , and in- 
clofures of bleilings^ juit as the bowels of the earth are filled 
with ricli Mines, and yet are not rich. 

Or elfc they do fpend their eftates upon their lulls, in drun- Dives} 
kenr.cfj, luxurioufnefs, and \ ll other beaftly voluptuoufnefs, .for tAmpl'm *pm- 
which finful abufes rhey (hall be judged another day. Tneir ^/f mr ^% 
efta/cj are but hinderances to obedience, and furtherances to c ^"' r U ^J C / 

" n - perurum.Cypz, 

But godly men have an heart given them from God to ufe!o:.cic. 
their citates, (for their own neceltity, for the help of oihers, 
and for his glory). They have mercies, and tafteof them- - 

they have goods, and do good with them ; and Chitft ml^*^^ 
take notice thereof in the day of judgment, that they fed and 

K z clothed 

58 Hem&kethmetoliedomi Vcr.s. 

clothed him and gave him a cup of cold water. I think that a 
little meat, and a good ftomack, and a plain houfe, with a good 
eye, and a hard bed with a found body, is much better then a 
feaft where a man hath no ftomack at all to eat ; then a gawdy 
room where a roan hath not an eye to fee ^ then a down bed, 
whereon a mans pain will not fuffer him to lie. That eftate 
which a man can ufe and beft ufe is the beft e irate. 
They hare 4» That eftate is beft in which a man hath moft peace and com- 

morc peace and/erf. If a man hath abundance of wealth, and abundance of. 
somforr. of Vexation : If he hath a float of dignities and a flood of 
fears , the unquietnefs of his mind will quite alter the good- 
nefsof his eftate ; there can be no happinefs where there is no 
quietnefs. Better is a little "frith the fear of the Lord , then 
great treafure and trouble therewith^ Prov. 15.16. Better is a 
dinner of herbs where love is , then a [tailed ox and hatred 
therewith , verf. 17. We may fay of all outward thing* 
without peace,what Solomon faith of a brawling woman^ they 
are a continual dropping. Now take any wicked man in the 
world with the faireft eftate, there is not that peace under it 
er with it as with the eftate which a godly man enjoyes. 

There are two kinds of peace which are precious and confc? 
much to our comfort on earth • 
One is the peace of conjeience , 
Another is the peace of contentment, 
- A wicked man in the fulleft of his temporal eftate, enjoyes 
neither upon right and found grounds. 

He enjoyes no peactin conscience. Sufpirat inconvivio, vi- 

gilat inpluma,fal& Cypri^p in Ep.2. Still he carries his own 

torment with him faid S. Auftin^ Bene ejfe cum malo non poteft^ 

ln.Pfrt-l*. fibi ip ft torment urn eft. Ipfe emm eft poena fua quern torejnet 

(jlw)\7. confeientia jua -, \ugit ab inimico quo potuerit, afequo ftigiet^ 

gjri ' qnisqms malm eft, male Cecum tft. It is ever evil- with an evil 

" ' man. And then what is all the world to a man, a galled eon- 

fcience is like a fick ftomack which cannot abide the fight of 

meat; all that thou haft, thou wilt rather defire thou never 

hadft, then to look on them with an accufing and troubling 

confeience. Thou haft got them • but not by right; thou 

haft poffeffed but not rightly ufed them, and unjuft getting?, 

andfinful employings prove thy greater torments. The evil 


Ver.2, in Green Pajlures. 69 

man hath mtiltitudinem opum & m>mcipiortim,Qcc. but the righ- Augnfl. [oc. ci: 
tcous perfon though he hath but a difli of green herbs, yet with P' 1 ? 1 - 
it hath a good confcience which is as a continual feaft. What- 
foever he hath, he hath peace with it. S. *Atiftin upon thofe 
words of Duvid, Pfal.37. *Deleclabitur in multittidine pjcts % 
elegantly fpcaks it thus, Aurum tttt*m pax % pr<edia tua pax, vita 
tuapax, Dens tutu pax. Thy gold (hall be peace, thy ill vcr 
peace, thy pofleiTions peace, thy life peace, thy God peace. 
The evil man hath thornes in his eftate, and thornes in his con- 
ference; He Vralkjth upon thornes^ faith Solomon-, but the path of p rov , 2 Xt ^ 
the godly is plain,the eftate of the godly is good,and their peace 
is furpafling. 

Nor doth he enjoy the peace of Contentment • godlinefs rrirb 
contentment u great g*in, fo the Apoftle. Godlinefs alone is 
gain (a very good portion) and contentment alone is gain, 
but Godlinefs with contentment is great gain. No condition 
is any thing if a man be not contented. What is an husband 
if the wife like him not, or a child if one delight not in him, or 
any mercy if a man picks a quarrel with it ? If we fay, I have 
no pleafure in it, it is a very vexation to us. Now an evil heart 
is like that evil fpirit 'twixt Saul and the people , it doth 
breed a difquieted reftleflenefs, and a perpetual diflike of a mans 

There is not only anexcefsof diftaftefulnefs, ne p^^ oz>a f^^\ n ^\tt 1 ad 
Or ne percuffor infeflet ,or ne inimica cujufqut Ixuplttionu mv':- [\n. 
Ma calumnies Ht'bfisinquietet, as S.Cyprian fpeaks, but alio 
an excefs of diftaftfulnefsjike a Bee whipping from this flowe; 
to that; orl ke a wave running on the fhore, and then hurling 
back into the fca again : a man knows not where to fettle, or 
what he hath, or what he wants. But the good man hath a 
good eftate, and a contented heart • as EU (aid of che Word 
of God, Good is the Wordoftht Lord, that he faith of his con- 
dition, Good is the portion of the Lord • this I like, and that is 
fit, and all r* well. No eftate like that wherein a man can enjoy 
God,and himfelf, and the eftate all ogether. 

5:. That e'l Ate which umjre (tabic and enduring u the beft .Their tit 
We do not efteem of Tenure by life as we do of Free -hold, for marc Stable. 
life is a moft uncertain thing That which is little for the fight, 
may yet be much more for the future then a large bulk for the 

jo HemakabmetolkdetPn Ver. 

prefent : Ten pounds a year for ever is better then an hundred in 
hand. Thou (heweft me the large bulk and bodie in honours 
or riches, or friends and revenues that wicked men have, and 
perhaps fretted at thine own infelicity and Simplicity of getting, 
but, faith David, The little which a righteous man hath^ is better 
then the riches of many wV^/, Pfal.37.1 i. He doth not (im- 
ply fay , The eftate, but the rich eftate, the riches, not of one, or 
a few, but of many wicked. And why better? he gives the 
reafon in ver. I 7. For the arms of the wicked Jb all be broken. A 
weak arm is far better then a broken arm • all the ftrength, and 
power, and wealth (which are the only arms of the wicked to 
fupport them) they (hall be broken. 

Suppofe a Merchant had an hundred thoufand peund in a 
fhip which were even now ready to fink into the midft of the 
fea, and another man had forty pound ia good land, which of 
thefe two had the bed eftate ? the leflcr now is the beft,becaufe, 
extra cafum & periculum. 

The temporal eftate of wicked men is feldome loag lived, ic 
is full of fomany difeafes, either of pride or oppreffion, or co- 
vetoufnefs, or fraud, or luxury, it cannot hold out , and there- 
fore their pompous eftates are compared to things of an abrupt 
cxiftence. To the &*$* which a purlof wind difperfeth. To 
the Grafs, which the face of the Sun quickly withers. To the 
tops of Corny which are foon cut off, ^24.24. To the unripe 
*Grape, Job 15.53. He {ball Jbake off his unripe grape as the V**?} 
and/ball cafi off his flower as the Olive. A little fhaking difperfeth 
bis eftate, as a little noife doth a flight of birds. Nay, to a 
Dream and night Vifien, Job 20.8. A dream is but a fancy of 
a thing, and a quick fancy, built and undone (like a bubblejwith 
a breath in a few moments. But the temporal eftate of the righ- 
teous is more permanent. The wicked faith, That his houfe 
fball abide for ever : He faith fo , God faith otherwife, That it 
fhalibecaftdown; but God faith, That the righteous JbaQ pof- 
feffe, or, inherit the earth, Pfal.37.22. and their houfe fball be 
built up. Not that there is cot a mutability in the Temporal 
eftate of a good man, but that there is that undertakingfor it , 
and promife of upholdment for it, which is not for another 

6. Laftly,Not to over-work this point - y Do but confider what 


Ver.2. in Green Paflures. 71 

lojfes an evil man fuflains with the greatnefs of his temporal eft ate Cor.fiJer the 

and then you will confefs that the temporal eftatc of a good loffcs ™ c . vil 

■ r 1 . ° man ultsinj 

man is far better. wi{h thc ^ 

If you would make a valuable eftimate and juft account how nc f s f his ccm- 
great amanseftateis , you muft not only look what lands or poraltihcc. 
wares he hath, but withal you muft deduct all debts and all lof- 
fes. If he owes more then he is worth, his eftate then is reck- 
oned to be worfe then nothing-, and if that which he Jofeth 
farrexceedes whathepofTeiTeth. if he gets a penny and lofech 
a pound , or gets one pouad and lofeth a thonfand ; alas, he is 
a poor fellow .' I apply this, if you deduct the debts and the 
loflesfrom a wicked mans eftate, you (hall find him poorer then 
fob upon the dunghil. He owes more then foul,or body,or eftate 
can ever pay or ranfome. 

S. Au/linupon thofe words of David, in Pfal.37. fTheun- Vogt 196. 
godly borrowech and payeth not again ) exprcfTeth himfelf 
much to our purpofe. Quanta accepit peccator pro quibus non 
fohit ? How many things,faith he,hath the (inner borrowed for 
which he hath not paid ? Acctpit ut fit homo, Accepit corporis for- 
wam. Accepit incorpcre diftintlior.em fen[uum,*dvidendum oc*~ 
los^adaudiendum aures,ad oderandumN ares ,ad guflandum pala- 
tum, adcontretlandum manus, ad ambulandum pedes, falutem. 
que ipfam corporis. Accepit etiam amplius Mentem qu& pojfit 
intelligere, qu£ pjpt capers vcritatem, qua pojsit juftum ab in- 
juflo difcernere, qu<t pofsit indagare, defiderare % creatorem Uu- 
dare & inher*re illi. 

To all which receipts of body and mind, I add, Accepit infu- 
per amplify, divitias , dignitates, &c. he hath received alfo 
wealth, &C Sednon bene vivendo reddit : Non reddit ea M qua 
accepit gr 'at ias agenda; Hedothnotpay the fruit of all thefe 
either by an holy life or by true thankfulnefs. Jmorependit 
malapro b nis,blafphemixs, murmur, advtrfus Tlenm iniigna~ 
tionem. He requites ill unto God (and fo increafeth his 
debts ) by his blafphemies, by his murraurings, by his frettings 

And as he owes more then he can pay , fo he hath loft more 
then ever he wil or can be worth , yea, though he had all the 
world. Quis gr avion damno patltur qui ami t tit ptenmam, 

yfc Hemakethmetotiedonw Ver, 

jtugujtAoc. cic. an qui amittit fidem ? Who hath the greater lofs (faith S.Au~ 
p.»9 a « ftin) he who hath loft his Money y or he who hath lofthis 


So fay I, The lofs of money (nay let me turn that word) the 
gain of money is not fo great as the loffe of the foul. But an 
evil man to gain the world doth lofe his foul, for a mefs of pot- 
tage he fells his birth-right. 

It is otherwife with a good man and his temporal eftate ^ he 
brings in the rent of his mercies, Thankfulnefs and a good Life ^ 
and doth only ufe his bleflings, and fo he faves his foul and pre- 
serves his bleflings too, Indeed his lands are charged with a 
quit-rent of ThankfulnefTe, and a perpetual Homage of Knights 

Thus have you briefly the confirmation of the Affertion, 
That God doth provide the beft of conditions for his people. 
Now to the laft enquiry i 
Why doth God Jgueft. 3. Why doth God provide the beft for hispeo- 

providc the beft p| e ^ 
forbispecple? v / 

Sol. I anfwer briefly, 
He loves them 1 He loves them beft, and therefore provides for them beft ; 
btft. Special love is ever a fpring of fpecial bleflings. He loved the 

people oflfrael above all people , and therefore gave them a pof- 
fe/Jion above all lands , Deut.7.7. 
His Covenant 2. His Covenant u rvith his people , both for Spirituals and 
is with his pco- Temporals. Now the Covenant contains the choiceft and chief- 
pit. * eft bleflings. 

Chrift hath 3- Chrift hath pur chafed for them the be/} of ad things. All 

purchafed for things are yours (faith the Apoftle) whether Paul, 'or Apollo, 

them the b:ft of or Cephas, or the World, or life, or death, or things prefent , or 

allthings. things to come , all are yours, and ye areChrifts, and Chrift is 

iCor.j.n, Go ^ Why amongft the all (which he faith) areyours,doth 

he mention the world, and not reft in the fpiritual priviledges 

and advantages ? becaufe if there be any thing in all the world 

that may be better for them then other , they (hall have it. 

Chrift hath procured for them not only the higheft mercies in 

heaven, but alfo the fweeteft mercies on earth. 

1)fe * comenow to the Application of all this unto our felves.Doth 

For Informs- God provide the beft of conditions for his people ? thence may 

tiaa. we be informed of many things, 

1. That 

Vcr.2. in Creen Paflttres, 

I y 

I. That the condition of the godly is much bttter then the men The condition 
of thu rrorld do judge it. Godlinefs is no parched Wilder- ci : :h: V 7 k 
nefs,no barren Heath, nor like the Mountains of Gilboa : l c Jh" h tfc ^ e f r 
hath the Greenefi Pa[lnrcs y and the S title ft Waters. of rhc wor y 

In Scripture, the paths of Piety are the Reps of Profperity. judg ir. 
Worldly men account a man, taking a courfe to fink his tempo- 
ral eltate, his fortunes as we call them and hopes, if once he re- 
treats from the broad way of Licentioufnefs into the narrow 
way of holinefs. But ©f this I am fure that the great and wife 
God, who only hath power to blefs, and befr. chalks the wayes 
and methods of bettering our eftates , I fay he hath exprefTIy 
fet down , The prefence of holinefs and practice of holy 
obedience, as the onely beft way to obtain the only belt 

Read at your leifure Deut zS. from v.i. to v. 14. How every M/i/sopim- 
way blefled is the way of holy obedience? Bleflings above, an. D.ut.28. 
and bleflings below, bleflings within , and bleflings without . 
bleflings on our felves, bleflings on all that belong unto us, all 
kinds of bleflings, neceflary bleflings, and delightful blef- 
fings, all degrees of bleflings, plenteous goods, a good 
treafure , and all furtherances in feafon. Perufe the 

David was of the fame opinion : That the man who was Viv'u's opini- 
godly, who did decline the way of finHers, who did chufe,andorw 
meditate, and delight in the law of the Lord. Why? he was 
like a Tree planted by the rivers of Water, his leaf fhould not 
wither, and whatfoever he did (hould profper. See PfaL 
1.2,3. Solomon doth declare the like in fundry places of the 

Objetl, But now fome are apt to object, Experience fhewes 
the contrary. Gods people have not the bell, nay the beft of SlK Goc | s 
them have fometimes the worft outward conditions ; why ? p [ e have no: 
they have not that honour, and dignity, and eftimation in chat honour 
the world as other men have, they are ill fpoken of and dif- :hato:hets 
graced. hm ' 

Sol. Whether they have as much henour asall other men 
have, I will not difpute, but fure I am, they have better honour 
then all wicked men wbatfoever. But fully to unedge this ob- 
jection,! anfwer, 

L 1. To 

74 & e m&keth me to lie down Ver. 2 . 

To hsve all 1 . To have all men to honour or refpett one , as it u impof- 

mento xf^& fibU Jo ' u were di {honourable. What evil have I done (faid 
° n fTi * V OodiC* one ) c ^ at l ^ lS man commends me? Some mens applaufe are 
honourable. uk e *° m€ beggars benedi&ions,not worth the having. There 
are two conditions which are woful ; one is when all men fpeak 
ill of me ., another is when all men fpeak well of me. It is very 
prefumptuous that I have no goodnefs^hen every man is either 
my friend or elfe my enemy. 
Tohavehonor 2. To have honour from an evil* man is little or no honour : 
from an evil An evil tongue 15 reputed no Herald for our praife, and no dead 
man is no ho- flie for our difgrace. 

STdlv men 3* Godly men have the }u ft and proper motives of honour and 

have the proper r*//^ : Who ever is Virtuous is honourable-, the Heathens 
motives of ho- faw fo far. How much more is Holinefs a foundation of efteem 
nour and re- an( j[ re g ar d > t c is the fault of any if they do not countenance 
^ t<a * and regard godly perfons : tbeir excellency is hidden, and like- 

wife it is contrary to an evil way, evil men either fee it not,oc 
hate it. 
The godly 4 Yet the godly have honor from the heft ; from God \ 

have h ° n0 ° r ft . f rom his fervants, yea, from the very wicked themfelves. 
Goi doth ho- " Q°d doth honour them with the moft excellent Names, with 
nouc them, the moft noble Relations, with the moft glorious Graces, with 

the moft royal Priviledges and Titles. 
Good men Good men who can judge aright do honour them above all the 

honour them. p e0 pl e in the world. They honour them that fear the Lord 1 
they are to them as the precious Jewels, the ftroogeft Gates,the 
choiceft Pillars of the world. 
The wicked Yea, the very wicked do honour them ; fecretly they confefs 
do honor them, their excellencies, and either living or dying with all their fouls 

would exchange conditions with them. 
That which ^ Laftly ,Tbat which men count a diforaeejs the o»ly excclten- 

M«tTc?\s\he c J eft earth ' T ™e holinefs and a pious i t f e . itisasifone 
enfy excellency faould rail at a King for wearing his Crown. Holinefs is tl>e 
Crown of crowns on earth. I had rather enjoy holinefs with 
any eftate, then any eftate whatfoever without holinefs. Doft 
thou account him rich (faith S. Auftin) whofe purfe is full of 
But Gods peo- mone y* &c ■? I s not he r ^ cn whofe heart is full of Inno- 
ple are under cency ? 

aaidionsand obytt, But how can their eftacc be beft which is fo dri- 

Ver.2. in Green Paflures. 75 

ven by afflictions and fufferings. 
Sol. To this 1 anfwer, 

1. Ifyou fpeak of Afflictions in common courfcofprovi- Sufferings 
dence, evil men are as much affltteA at they . they are as capa- two fold. 

ble to lofe a child, a friend, a wife a husband, a parent, an eftate '• Nwurtl, 
as any good people whatfoever. There is not a greater muca- Soev,1 . me ". 8rc 
bility for the things thcmielves in one mans eltate then in ano- <aCclasth 
thers, and generally good men are more fecured that way then 
the bad. 

For befides the afflictions of providence, the great fins of evil 
men pluck down upon them the itrokes of Vengeance, and they 
live not out half their da) c c . 

2. The temporal eflate Which thty have with myfticdl afflitli- K MyftloL 
ens as they are the Indie of Chrift, is a far better eflate then all So th<ir tfm " 
the temporal exemptions and ft cur i ties of evil mm. To furTer po . r ? S. l ze 
for Chnit, it is a glorious thing and happy. <ee 1 /V.4 14. is b . aer lhcn 
Yea, it is a more eligible thing then freedom and peace. Mofts the exemptions 
nhenhe was come toyears (not when he was a child and could 5 evil men. 
not dive into things) refnfed to be called the f on of Pharauhs^^' 11 ' 1 ^ 
daughter y chu fin g rather toftiffer «jflitlions rriih the people of God, 
efteemirse the reproach of Chri ft greater riches then the treafures 

in Egypt. Of all men believers are higheft , and of all believers, 
TrueMar.yrs: ThePaffive part of Chriftianity is the mod ho- 
nourable, as the Paflive work efChrilt was molt beneficial If 
thou fhouldft fuffer for a m lion of years, it were nothing to 
that Eternity of Glory wh ch thou fhalt receive. To this pur- 

3 . All their afflictions in any kind, though they may lop off 

tiie branches, yet they ftrengthen the root. lhe<ft*te\% not Thcir t ^ iltli 
cr*fo?d but mended^ not impaired, but raifed ly them. Js the not impaired 
gold the worfe for being piriHed in the furnace? or the wheat but raifed by 
the worfe for being winnowed ? affli&ioiu. 

Vfts in vite prtffuram nonjentit , fr-fgra viie'ur fed nihil Au£i\\\ Pfa ? j 
iidemmat: Aiittitur inTcrcttlari y calcatur^ premitur y cj*c» p.$7i.cdi\Bif. 
inTorculari frntlwfa preffura efl. The Vine is moil fruitful, 
the Grapes yield out ther juice mod , when in the Wine- 

2 A fecond Information is this , That if God provides 
tJie beft eftate for his people, then they have miftrdbfy 

L 2 cheated 

j6 HemAkethmctolit dervn Vcr.2 

Thtymircra- cheated and del:, ma them /elves I : from the 

bly delude wayet fGod fin which they did formerly walk) and come over 
inQlUtfz?fiw t0 tWplUtofof wickedness, imagining thereby toadrar.ee and 
God and his better their tempo:;.! ethte ; like 2>r** 3 who ft Afi* 

wiycyhinKftg/f/fr itoi ewer am a :'■:•< fte tnt evil zv&rli. Ah foo'r.fh people 

tobenit them- and unwiie ! how much haft thou loft to get a little which 

ic.vcs. bequic.vy loir? Doft thou value innocer.cy, or integrity of 

heart, peace ofconfeience, or the favour of God and his bief- 

fing on thy condition at io poor a rate, for a little more in the 


Had not Geh**d been better to have remained an honeft fer- 
vant, then by lying to have got a charge of garments, and a 
change of conftitution, he was a leper to his death} Were the 
Ifraelites ever better in the pubfidc eftate of affairs, then when 
they were bell: in the truth of the right Religion ? Thou goeft 
into the warm Sun but from Gods blefting. No man betters 
himfelf by becoming Wicked : Nor can he, in the event, advance 
his eitate by corrupting his foul. What is the Stream to the 
Fountain, or the Creature to God, or a whole world with his 
curfe ? Were it not better to have enjoyed thy little and Gods 
love, then by a miferable exchange to disinherit thy felfof the 
hopesof heaven, and of all the comfort on earth. 

3. Laftly, Be here Informed, That if God provides the beft 

All the nicked of conditions for his people, thin il tbi'wicked hjve but « 

have but a yootconditicn of it. In Scripture their places are called fi-'ppery pUu 

condition of fc. Wj anc j the Lea fe of their habitation is but for a mc'ment. Be* 

Job 1 5, 28 xifi^ 4 ** Cit * es i an d hcu r es Kct inhabited, Inftead of Gm* Pafi:sres 

' and Still tenters, they are faid to feed en hus\s, and to inhabit 

the parched Heaths and a dry Land: What is there in all the 

Wine when the Spirits are Extracted, or in the Meat when the 

juice is fqueezedout? 

Objetl. O how men magnine, how great, how rich, how fall 
fuch and fuch are, how the world feems to ftoop unto their fer- 
Tice and ends, and they have what heart can de::re. 

Sol, But we are much miftaken: Evil men have indeed as 
rauch as comes 1 3 nothing, and all u nothing if it be not a com- 
fort : Either they have no comfort and delight at all in what 
they have, or that delight uhich they have is the very bane of 
their fouls and cftates. They make'their cftatcs to fcrvc their 
^ ■--' lufts. 

Ver.2. in Green Faftures. 77 

J uft?, and then their lufts utterly confume their eftates ; with 
all that they have, they have alfo an angry God, a guilty con- 
fcience,an unquiet fpirit, nothing blefled, all curfed, poorin 
their plenty, miferable in their jollities, defpifed in their ho- 
nors, abominable in their lives, horrible in their deaths, Others 
wafte their eftates, the grave rotts their bodies, and hell receives 
their fouls. If the finger of God appears againft them and 
writes their doom, like Bel/bazzar, their joints fmite one the 
other even in the midft of all their caroufings. If confciencc 
be ftirred and begins to rage they vomit up all again, and like 
Judas throw back the thirty pieces of filver. If crofTes, fick- 
nefles, or death draw neer, they have no camfort or hope a: 
all. Ah Brethren,if you love hope in death or comfort in life, 
or bleffing for ever,away>away,with all wickednefs, it is the way 
of your curfe, and ruine, and fhame, but not of your profperity, 
nor honour, nor fafety, nor delight. 

Since God doth provide the beft of conditions for his peo- Vfe.z* 
pie, hotv much are many of his people, (if yet they be fo) and^- ' ' 
rowgr aracaufc have they to bn humbled and repent for this^j^^' 
that the j do not alrvajes judge their conditions to be Jo. Afaph^ y c - 
condemned himfelf for a very /W, and as a beafl for cenfuring j U j« their 
his eftate to be worfe then the wicked mans. Their flrength is condition co be 
firm, they are not in trouble, they are not plagued as other men i D: ?* 
V. 5. Vtr'ily I have cleanfed my heart in tain, for all the day ^ 7 ^ 
long have I been phgued, and chaftenedeverj morning, v. 15,14 
Jeremiah the Prophet alfo, and D^vid in a fit are both in the 
fame tune of difcord. 

Ob. But we do not fo will fome reply, we know that we ferve 
the beft God, and do enjoy the beft good : *Tis true for ampli- 
tude of eftate we fall fhort, but for com fort ablenefs and good- 
reft of eftate we do exceed all evil men. 

Sol. Well! the voice is Jacobs , but come neer, let's feel Evidncrsof 
whether vouhavcon the rough garment upon this fmooth Tll5 ' u ^' 
skin. ' 

I. Envying and fretting at the condition of others undeni- Envying 
ably argues a misjudging of our own condition as beft. Iftrc:tinj; 
minebethe Wildernefs, and his the Paradife, if mine be the c:) " di:ic • 
Prifon, and his the Palace . Why is it, O Chriftian '. that A for- ahers ' 
drcaits honour is like to kiH thee > would this be, if thpu hadft 



He maketh me to Ik dotvn 



not Hamans Spirit ? Why is it jthat, like the Toad in the Fable, 
which envied the greatnefs of che Ox, thou art ready to bunt, 
thy felf for being behind and not equal to others in eftimation 
in dignity, in credit, in wealth, &c. If the precedency of o- 
thers, if Gods farther bleflings on others be (as the favazmtes 
to the Ifraeiites) the thorns in thy (ides, and pricks in thy 
eyes : if you cannot look on the eftate of others jwithout trou- 
ble and indignation, aiTuredly you do not really judge your 
own condition to be beft for you. 

2. Conftant dejctlions about thy temporal condition, argues 
Corftantde-^ too c | eer iy t hat thou art not fatisfied in this point, that Cod 

our Tempo* ^ ^ at ^ P rovicle( * ^ e ^ eft - When any good for us is apprehended 
this caufeth hope •, when it is poflefled, this caufeth joy • It is 
onely evil that which we j'udge to be evil upon us, which cauf- 
eth grief. Thou art feldom without a fear in thy heart, a tear 
in thy eye, a figh in thy breft • this yields no comfort, and that 
is but a crofs : Thou ferveft God in the abundance of all things 
with fuch a dull, heavy, aukard fpirit. I fear, O thou forget- 
ful Chriftian ! I fear that thou judgeft of the beftnefs of a tem- 
poral eftate, as Tradefmen do of Chapmen, they are the beft 
who bid the moft,thou doft judge of beftnefs not by quality but 
by quantity ^ for in an ordinary eftate thou art unchecrfully fad, 
and in an enlarging eftate, thou art then onely alive •, the addi- 
tion of the creature , not the benedi&ion of God prevails 
with thee. 

3 . EnMefs complainings and dipkes may convince thee that 
thou art not convinced of the beftnefs of thy eftate : thou canft 
pick a quarrel with every mercy, and like a Lawyer find a flaw in 
every deed \ thy condition is unto thee as thy Watch, ftillouc 
cf order, and like a book printed, that ftill hath Errata's at the 
end to be corrected ; This is too much, and that is too little-, 
one thing comes too foon, another too late. This is not plea- 
fant enough, and that is not handfom enough, and 1 know not 
what is good enough. If it be thus with thee as with that odi- 
ous Atheift who if he 1 had been prefent at the creation, would 
have directed God a little better ; fo if thou be able to correft 
Gods wifdom,and better to guide the hand of his goodnefs, 
thou art far, too far from acknowledging the portion which he 
hath caft upon thee to be belt. Thou takeft it ill as fefefh did, 


Endkfs com- 

Vcr. 2 , in Green Pajl tires. 19 

when Jacob hid his right band oh Efhraim and his lejt on 

4. Prejent burthens we never judge to be the be ft conditions. p rt f ent \^ t . 
Forgoodnefsisnot burtlunfom, and no wife man is weary ofd:ns we judjc 
what he believes to be convenient for him. Ah ! why is ic no: to be the 
(man) that Gods mercies feem very burdens to thee 1 thou art bcl * con ^ions 
fick of many a mercy which God hath given to thee ; weary of 

this child, and anon wouldftberidof that- weary of husband, 
weary of Parents, weary of friends, weary of this Trade , 
weary of that, yea fometime thou curfeft thy blefllngs, thou 
likeft every mercy but what thou haft : doeft thou well thus to 

5. Laftlyjf thou believeft that God hath provided thebeftWe<!onorqui- 
for thee, Wkj Aocfl thou not quietly fit do\\n> If thy paftures ec X fudov,rn - 
be green, why doeft thou not lie down in them ? if thy waters 

be itill, why doeft thou not drink of them alone. But art rea- 
dy to break over into the Defarts and to fuck at ftollen waters. 
I mean to exceed all lawful bounds and to put forth thy hands 
to unlawful courfes. Doeft thou believe that God hath provi- 
ded the beft for thee, when thou imagined that unworthy fin- 
ningsagainft God will better thy eftate • to flip into the way 
of curfe, tofteal one handful of profit. Brethren, thefe Ar- 
ticles (hew unto us all, how infinitely fhort we are in acknow- 
ledging of thegoodnefs and wifdom of Gods providence to- 
wards us: that though he doth provide fuffictency for us and 
conveniency for us, yet we do not judge it to be fo. 

O'f. Yea but for all that will fome reply- There be feme rt . 
„• . r . * . . r j- • j > o'Jt there are 

erodes, and fome inconveniencies in our prelent condition*, and r m ; foconrr- 

we cannot but fee them, and feel them too • therefore blame niencesii our 

us not if we do notalwaies judge oureftates to be beft, when P"f«ni conci* 

as alwayes they are not fo. tion - 

Sol. To this fond Objection, I anfvver, 

1. It is but thy ignorant Simplicity to expect any tempor.il 
condition in this I fe , without feme inconveniences or other. We hir ' Js a mix * 
may fancy fuch a condition in our eftates, as fome do a Church convcn j,n CfS 
on earth, without fin :, fo a condition without fome crofTe^ : nemy :fT> . 
but all conditions may anfwer concerning it, as the creatures inporalconii-.ior 
Job 28.14.15. did about wifdom, The depth faith, it is mot in 
me, and the fe a faith, it is not xi,: k m$ : who ever faw the cleer- 

80 Hemakctbmetolk down Vcr.2. 

eft day without fome clouds? or heard the fweeteft mufick 
which needed not to have the firings prefently tuned again > 
Which arifcth There are four things which of neceftky contract fome particu- 

lar inconveniences in the beft of temporal eftates, v.g. 

From the natu- i . One is the natural defellivenefs of the creature. Do you 

"1 defedive- _. fa^ t0 dig p ure goldL out of the mine, or to bring pure wheat 

crcacure. C outof the held,or to find white fugarinthe cane. The creature 

cannot fpring up any entire excellency, but it felf being but a 

borrowed being , a weak being, a mixt being t neceflarily it 

can yield but a weak, but a broken, but a mixt delight, and fe- 

^ mt mi-fatisfadion. 

Thevaftncfsof 2. Another is the vaftnefs of the mind of man^ which out- 

themindof goes the creature infinitely. The flow creature cannot keep 

pace with the fwift mind of man, or that empty fhadow fatis- 

^ - fie that great fubftance. You may as foon comprehend the 

heavens in your hands, as totally fatisfie the foul of man by the 
creatures. Two things are impoffible, i.to fill the extenfive 
capacities and reaches of the foul, with thefe earthly fhadows. 
2. To form the operations of the creatures juft to our fancies 
and imaginations, that the creatures ftiall juft thiak, fpeak, 
act, fall in, how, when, how much and not otherwife then we 
would in our fancies have them; 

3. A third is the over-ruling diffofition of Go^ who in every 
T be ^r er "r"" eftatefets c ^ e ev ^ againftthe good, and tempers our fweeteft 
of n Go/° ltIO " cu P wit ^ *° me kitternefs,and our beft wine with fome fharp- 
nefs, as you fee the moft fertile ground, with much corn, to 
bring forth many weeds; fo God will have it, that even our 
neereft comforts (hould have fomething of the crofs in them. 
The great and wife God, as he doth tern per the bittereft affli- 
Sions of his people with ibme comforts, fo he doth allay the 
fweeteft comforts of his people with fome bitternefs. 
f 4. A fourth is our own finfulmfs which doth fowrallour 

p, ur e ° s ] vn ,n " mercies, and ever and anon makes them tafte like croffes : our 
own pride, folly, difcontent, turnes even our mercies into 
. , 2. But then fecondly, this wixtu e in our temporal condition 

in ounempo' •* *<fl- The Phyfitians do hold that if the Elements did re- 
ral condition is ma in P ure m our bodies, there could be no fubfiftenceof us , 
beft. but they muft be mingled, and qualified, and tempered, and by 

^^^ that 

Vcr.2. in Cretn PaJIures. 81 

that temperature of contrarieties is our life beft preferred. Sup- 
pose you had nothing but fair weather all the year, that the 
Sun fhould ftill (hine bright, Alas would ye fay, all would be 
burnt up. This would be like the day of judgment all on a 
fire. And fuppofe you had nothing but rain all the year , 
why this were as bad, th.s,l:ke the deluge of Ncah, all would be 
drowned. You fee then that a variety of weather is belt for 
the earth, and fo is a variety in our conditions beft for us. To 
fee our comforts to be let out, and drawn in • to help, and then 
to fail; Sometimes to prove much contentment, and anon 
to be at a Rand, and to produce no delight. I fay this conve- 
nient inconveniency, this delightful undelightfulnels, this pleaf- 
ing crofting, isa condition belt for us. Jf our conditions did 
yield us no comfort at all, we would certainly loath them •, and 
if they did yield us no erodes, we fhould certainly dote on 
them. If they were all forrow unto us, we fhould grow wea- 
ry of life • and if they were all pleafurc ur.to us, we fhould 
grow forgetful of heaven. We would fuppofe that Adam were 
got again into Paradife, from which by too much earthly de- 
lights we fhould prcfently fail. The wife God hath feated two 
things in all our temporals to correct our inordinate affection 
to them, one is a mutability for being, a fading flower, a turn- 
ing tyde, a running glafs, they are but a blaft and a vapour. A- 
notherisa mutability in their wording « they are Irke a fnake 
which hath the fmoothefl skin, and yet the deadlieft lting : li> 
our outward delights may kz aga : nit us and be ourbictercit 
crofles. And yet many times the croffings in the creatures, are 
our beft fafeguards againft the delights and plea fu res in them. 
The pleafures of them might have been our^ fea to drown us , 
had not the croffings of them been our plank to fave us. The 
crofles wheh we do fometimes meet with in our temporal con- 
ditions, either make us good, or keep us fafe The Mariner is 
beholding to the tempeftuous weather, that he hath put into a 
fafe harbor. It is a dangerous thing to enjoy a condition on 
earth onely of fenfual delight. I ftedfaftly affirm it, That cur 
ejlates -mil be our curfes y if fometimes they be net our crofles. 
Heaven onely is the place where all is pleafure, and hell onely is 
the place where all is mifery • but this life is a vxhfor tears, as 
vje\\ as an hill for pleafure; . 

^ J. I , « I ■ ■ I ■- ' * — ^— — -°» 

g$ He maketh nte U lie down Vcr.z. 


•y/i 3 . Since God doth provide the beft of conditions for his people, 
Bcpcrfwsdeclcolet his people henceforward be perfwaded accordingly to judge 
jadjeof our ^ efteem of their conditions as b?ft. 
conation m Two t ij- in g 8 j w iH hei:e propound^ 

i Motives to efteem our conditions beft. 
z Means.to enableus fo to judge of them. 
Motives to it. The Motives are 

. , i. You have all the caufe that may be fo to efteem and . 

fo to !uL" U C J uc ^S e > whether you look on your temporal conditions. 

In the caufe s of them. Why / they come from the hight ft 

onour Tcm"^ tove ' and choiceft wifdorn of God - doth not God love you 

porXinthe above all the people o£ the world, and doth nothiswifdom 

ciufes of ihcm. difcern all differences and comparifons f if his love be for you 

and his wifdom for you^ furely he then doth and will provide 

the beft for you. 

In thcfuitablc* In th€L {$*&•*& of them > whether to your, 
ntfs of tbem. i.ExigeKces,ot to 2 your [ervices-, take the whole latitude & 
To our cxi- eftate of your Spirits, and of your wants, your conditions can- 
jenccs. not be better for you then now they are:you fee perhaps that in 

one or another particular, things might be better, yea,but confi- 
der, an eftate to anfwer all your perfonal exigences in the gene- 
ral,now the prefent is beft for you. 
. z. And alio coniider what fpecial/^fYej God expects from 
ar v % you,and whatends he bath in his providence towards you ; now 
the prefent eftate. is beft ferviceable to thofeends. In the o- 
ther condition that you think beft, you fee the goodnefs, bue 
do not fee the ilnefs, the ingredients with it^ares/ears^roubles, 
and dangers. You cannot tell whither your hearts would be 
carried, ho7r tbey might give out themfelves, how far they 
might venture, were your temporal condition otherwife. There 
is more water in the fea,ai, but there's more totting ; the moun- 
tain is higher, ai, but it is colder. 
... , 2 l y. You will be more united and enlarged in theferviee efGod 

morelnlirted by judging your temporal conditions to be beft. When you 
incheferviceofare praying, you will pray^ when you are hearing, you will 
■God.; hear-, and when you are reading, you will read-, and when 

you are meditating,you will meditate •, you will in all holy fer- 
vic$$ k Hoc *gm % mind, intend the work, in fervingof God 

r~'~" ' you 

Vcr.2. in Green Paftttrts. #3 

you will ferve him Whereas if you mil judge your temporal c- 
flates, as evils, as meer erode*, as needy and defective fiipplies, 
you will either have dead hearts or diftr* (Red hearts in the (cr- 
vice of Cod. When you fr.ould be ilriving with God to mend 
your hearts, thenwill your minds be contriving howyoumay 
mend your eftates ; when you fhould be earneftly feektng for 
mercy, then will you be vexingly thinking how to be rid of your 
trouble; and whiles your eyes are reading the good word of 
God, your thoughts arc rifing up agair.ft the good providence 
of God towards you. 

3 1 )'. You will hereby be enabltdto pay in your rent fir You will be rhc 
yonr temporal mercies. Our chief rent for our mercies, is more i*™W. 

Confider (O man) though thou haft but an hard bed, yet 
thoucacft (leep foundlj on it, (fo cannot many who he in beds 
of doun) and this is a great mercy : Again, though thou halt 
but a little meat, yet thou haft zgocd jiomaclo to eat and digeft 
it, and this is more then if thou hadft ail the delicacies of a 
feaft. Again, though thou Inft but a poor wife, yet (he 
loves thee mtirely and is careful every way for thy good , and 
this is more then if thou hadft the finer!, braveft, idleft, grace- 
lefs gallant in the City. O when a man comes and confiders of 
Ir.s condition, and looks on this mercy , and then on that, and 
then on another, and puts the cafe to himfelf, which of all theTel 
have I deferved ? None. Which of all thefe could I wane ? 

Not one. This is an help to my foul, and that to my body, 

and another to my family : That we fee our many mercies, like 
many bees , every one of them bringing honey to the hive : 
Now the heart begins to be arTeded with Gods goodnefs-, O 
Lord what is thy fervant that thou art thus mindful of him f I 
p.m lefs then the lea J} of all thy mercies, thou haft dealt well with 
thy fervant, the lines are fallen unto me in pleafant places , yea, I 
have a goodly heritage-, I dedre to blefs thee, the God of ^11 

th's mercy, to love thee, the God of all this goodnes ; to 

fervc thee, the God of all my condition, which is the belt con- 
dition for me. 

4 ,y It is the on'yrvai to lead a co mutable life ; a diflike andlc isthconefy 
misjudging of our eftates caufcth two evil etfeds. I irft , it wa y to lead a 
Jn*m all cu r mercies , mercy is no mercy to him that hkes ic" m ^ onat)it 

M z not 1 - 

84 Hemdketbme tolie down Ver.2 

not. Secondly, It drowns all cur comforts ^ mercy hath no 
tafte to him : /^?««^,though very fweet/iike wafers made with 
honey) yet it was defpifed by the Ifraelites as a courfe, ordina- 
ry, poor, dry fare, becaufe they out-grumbled every mercy, 
and every condition. What portion of delight or comfort did 
all the dignities, and all the riches of Hawtn afford unto him 
being difcontented > you fee in Mufickone jarring firing fpoiis 
all •, and In the body, the ache of one tooth takes off the fenfe 
and pleafure of all our health aad ftrength, So if a man hath 
' an ill eye on any one mercy he polTefTeth, the vexation about 
that one , fwallows up all the joy in all that belongs unto him. 
But if you would live, and live comfortably •, if you would 
tafte the mercy of a mercy ^ the comfort and juice of your 
comforts ; look on your own mercies and conditions as beft for 
you. Then thy wife and thovi will rejoice together, then thy 
heritage will be a pleafint heritage indeed ^ then thy children 
will be in thine eyes as Olive Plants (and not as nettles) round 
about thy table : all thy relations will be fweet unto thee. I 
afTure thee that if thy heart be thus raifed and framed to judge 
of thy temporal condition as beft , this will be the iflue and 
good of it. Thy head will be more emptied of vain cares, 
aiad thy heart of vain fears, and thy mind of turbulent tempta- 
tions, and thy breft of breaking difcontent, Thou wilt look. 
on God as on one that loves thee, thou wilt better relifh his 
Ordinances, perform thy duties, thou wilt be more fruitful in 
thy place, more upright in thy walking, and more cheerful all 
thy dayes. 
Means cna- Secondly, the Means ^ enabling of us thus to judged 
blinjusthusw j (hall not ftand long on this,for it will have a more full hand- 
*" * e ' ling in the next affertion,brieny, thus, 

You muft be * * ^ ou mu ^ N *^~ e t0 f ee more t ^ >eyt y otir e fiA* e * if you would 

able to fee fee your eftates to be belt : Alas 1 if you can fee but the fheli 

more then and the rinde of your eftates, Iconfefsyou fee but little, and 

yourefbecs, n0 t enough to fatisfie and content .• what is. any creature 

which we poflefs? what can it of it felf confer or contribute 

towards our comforts? one man hath much more of it then 

thoa, and yet hath no ufe of it, or comfort in it at all. 

If thoucouidftfeeGodinthy condition,in much love and 
wifdom ordering the lines for thee. If thou couldft fee God 


Ver.2. in Green Paftures. 85 

with thy condition looking on thy foul with much reconciled 
favour in Chrift , thou wouldft prefer thy condition above the 
dignities of the greateft Monarch. When Diogenes was in his 
Tub, Alexander the great came unto him and bade him dcfire 
fome fpecial thing of him. Why '. (Taid Diogenes)Stand a fide 
and let me enjoy the lifht of the Sun. He preferred the ligh: of 
theSun, and his poor Cell, before all the favours of a Kjqg. If 
thou hadft but the light of the Sun, if the Lord make his cAndk 
f[hwe upon thy head^&S Job fpeaks, chap. 29.3. Ifthou couldit 
fee the light of his countenance upon thee, it would put more joy 
and^Ldnefs thin all the increahng of corn and ftine can do to e- 
vil men, TfaJ.^. 6 y j. 

2. If you would judge of your conditions as the beft, di not 

Uz\{ only on the defetts^ but moftly on the ufefulnefs of tbfm.Dinotloolc " 
There are two times when we can think well *£ mercies. One ° n ' y _ on J h: ^ ' 
is when we want them and greatly defirethem. Another is [y n\hcuic-" 

when we have loft them and greatly bewail them. And fulnefs of th:m 

why in thefe times do we judg fo well of ourconditions?becaufc 
now weconlider only the goodnefs and ufefulnefs of them, and 
not their imperfections and defeftivenefs. Strive to fee that in 
the fruition of a mercy, which thou canft fee in the abfence of it, 
how comfortable a good, how ufeful a good, how fit andnecef- 
fary a good for thee > 

TothisendbefeechtheLord to open the eyes of thy mind,e- 
ven in thy poffeilions , that thou maiftfeq that his goodnefs 
towards thee in his mercies , what an exceeding furtherance 
they are unto thee in the wayes of God, what remedies they a:e 
unto thee againft carking cares and many finiiter temptations , 
what eafeful helps they are unto thee , either in thy general or 
particular calling, or both. 

3. Strive to makj thufe natural defetls which thzufindtft ix Strive -.0 make 
thy condition, thy Spiritual helps, andthofe crejfes which fall jrf/fr^y nacu-aJce- 
be thy fpirit 11 aI medicines > Obferveft thou i:i any of thy outward fcds . m lhy , 
comforts that they are not fo fully and fo conlhntly comfor- ( ^^f^,p S 
table? thence raife up thy heart to the God of all comforts,and r 

fay, O Lord, this is but a creature, a weak itream, a meer flow- 
er, a reftrained foundation. Thou art good and wife in giv«_ 
ing but feebler comforts in earthly things, that fo I might learn 
to fct my choiceft affections and dcilres on thee who art an ab - 


86 He maketh we to lie down Vcr.2. 

loluce goodnefs , andamoft complete happinefs. And fo for 
the erodes thou meeteft in thy temporal condition, ftruggle noc 
fo much about them, but refled on thine own heart, what is in 
—« ittheje to be purged out by thofe crofTes.? Ufually our pri- 
vate erodes in our conditions.are private medicines which God 
ufeth to (hew unto us, and purge out of us that excefs of fecret 
pride, vanity, corrupt affections, &c and to keep pur hearts 
more humble, watchful, careful, clofely to walK with him This 
were an excellent way to bring us to judgeour conditions to be 
beft, when either the comforts of them make us more thankful , 
and the erodes in them make us more heavenly. 
Above allftrive 4. Above all mufl you ftrtve for Faiih, which will in every 
fo* F«kh. thing acquit the Wifdom of Gods providence ^ though for the 
prefent you fee not that fpecial good and ufe of every one of 
your temporal mercies, yet Faith will conclude, That muft be 
„>*-— ' beft which comes from the wiftft God. And have patience a- 
while (carefully walking with God , and doing good in your 
places) and you (hall find there is not any one particular mer- 
cy conferred on you by God, but it (hall have its operations 
for good unto you. If every affl dion (hall work for good, 
much more (hall every mercy work for good unto them thac 
love the Lord. S. AhJIw was a very voluptuous and untoward 
child, and a great grief to his mother CMonica> who yet did 
fhed many tears,and put up many prayers for him, and at length 
God did convert him, and made him the chiefeit of all the com- 
forts that ever (he had. Many a woman hath a very evil and 
unkind husband, fo hath many a man a very evil and pervetfe 
wife : perhaps either of them complain as if their conjunctions 
were the moil: unhappy. Neverthelefs, it falls out oft times thac 
the good wife converts the ill husband, and the good husband 
converts the evil wife, and then how exceedingly is the condi- 
tion bleft ? However, the good wife may perhaps blefs God 
that ever (he matched with fuch an evil husband , ox.e contra, the 
good husband that ever he matched with fudr' an evil wife. 
For it hath been the fingular means to make them both to 
confider their wayes and hearts, and to reform and turn unto 
the Lord. 
Bejo'GaJ 5. Laftly, If you would judge your conditions to be belt, 

conwmsd Spi- begofGed for contents* Sprite Contentment it isthatGrace 
rirj » which 

Vcr.2, in Green Paflttres. 87 

whxh matcheth the mind and the condition together , and 
makes our hearts to fal in evenly and fmoothly with our eftates, 
as one well ordered wheele doth with another in a rightly com- 
pofed Watch. Every thing is a great mercy to an humble heart , 
and every thing is a good mercy to a contented heart. But I 
will not enlarge in this, becaufe I (kail infiit more fully on it in 
the next Proposition. 

One life more and then I have done with this po : nt , and it Vfi.f* 
fliall be for Inftruftion to the people and flock of God. Since In ^^ic«. 
their Shepherd doth provide Green Paftures and Still Waters 
for them, hence to learn thefe duties ^ viz. 

I. >hey Jhould return the beft of / 'ervices, becaufe God gives KtxumihtU^ 
unto tbtm the beft of blcjpngs, Ordinary performances do no of ferfiett fiocc 
way anfwer extraordinary mercies. If we did pick up our com- J^* RTfr" 
forts in the open Commons, it were an almcs unto vs, that God in *' 

would make any provifton ; but to fpread the choiceft table for 
us to bring out the richeft wine, to give us mercy in mercy,and 
mercies with mercy, and the mercies of mercy, a temporal mer- 
cy and his fpiritual favour, a temporal mercy and peace in con- 
science, a temporal mercy and gladnefsof heart, tofugarour 
wine, to drels our garden,not only to give bleiTings,but to blefs 
cur bleflings. Should we be finfully barren under all his good- 
nefs? God forbid ! Should any what, and how, of ferv ces 
ferve the turn, all the world would cry fhame on us : The beft 
of our fouls, with all our ftrength, with allourmight, with all 
our heart, the beft of our bodies, the beft of our graces, the beffc 
of our arTedions , the beft of lives only anfwer, beft anfwer for 
the beft of conditions. We (hould exceed others in fear, in 
love, in delight with God, in zeal for God, in our hearts, in 
ourcarriages^ in our duties, in our conventions, who by God 
are made to exceed ail others in our fpiritual , yea, and in 
our temporal conditions. Shou'd] we think any th ng in 
us, of us, "about us, from us, toogood for his glory, who 
thinks nothing in heaven or eirth too good for our com- 
fort ? 

2. They fbould return mrf /&.*«£;, becaufe theyreceive theyy e (^ 0u ' ,. 
bed of conditions of God. There arc two cc :afions or grounds :u rn mot*' 
for choice thankfulncfs. One is where the kin In (Jes ure )Vf#.thiiiktwhorr- 
UoJekrved favours (hould be like an heavy weight which in- ctWe-ihebcM 

88 He rkxkttb me to lieddtvn Vcn 

ftant'Iy. mounts up the empty fcaie. Another is where the mer- 
cies are cbcice.When they come,as It were, from the very art and 
fiudj of Lev e ; When they are the QuintefFence of affe&ion. 
The people of God have no more defert in them of mercy then 
^^-^^*^any other ( I am not worthy , faid Jacob, of the haft) and yet 
they have the chiefeft of mercies for heaven, and rhe choiceft of 
mercies for earth. Jf the pooreft muft blefs for the meaneft of 
mercies, if every man muft blefs for the thinneft mercies,fhou!d 
not we be thankful for the beft? It is but juftice that wc 
fhould blefs raoft, who are moft blefled. If we deferve not the 
Jeaft, O how thankfully fhould we acknowledge for the bed > 
If every mercy (hould be a finger to make the firings t<? found , 
what a fuller harmony ? how our mouths fhould be Blted with 
praifes which are filled with bleflings? 
They (hould j.. xhey Should return moft love. There are two caufesof 
return fficft muQ ^ j ove f r0 m US to God. One \%\v\\tn much u for given: 
Another is when much u given. The choiceft mercy in for- 
giving, the choiceft bounty in giving. Thefe are the Cords of 
Love, thefe (hould twine and indear our affections to God. O I 
how (hould we be knit and cleave unto him? how (hould we 
delight and folaceour felves in a God fo good in himfelf, and 
fo good unto us? 

Object. *Tis true, That temporal mercies are not in their own 
abfolute nature very high, nor yet in a compatifon with heaven- 
ly graces fo high and fo defirable. 

Sol. Yet you know that pro ftatu Viatorum^ they are moft 

neceffary, and being fweetned with the Superaddita of divine 

love and fpecial bleffing, they are now even tokens from a re- 

reconciled God, and may the more affect us with love to God , 

becaufe they fpring from his fpecial love to us. 

They (hould of 4« They fhould of all people have the ft i tie ft minds Vcho drin^ 

ail people n of the ft Ule ft waters. Whatloever our condition is, if it be but 

haveihe ftil- food and raiment, we ought to be contented, for every condi- 

left minds. t i on is good. If we ought to be quietly contented with any 

condition, furely we (hould be abundantly contented With the 

beft condition. 

Letthembe 5- If their condition be beft let them beckearfnl. It isa 

Chcarful. reafonable and a very comly fight , That a very good God 

(hould beferved with a very glad heart. Though a fwagge- 


Vcr.2. in Green Pa/lures y &c, 8p 

ring Jollity misbefeems any man, yet a prudent Alacrity befits 
every ChriiVian. What caufe halt thou to fret and vex , or to 
pine away, and to walk with perpetual clouds in thy counte- 
nance who halt the beft expectations for the fucure,and the beft 
poiTeflions for the prcfent ? Deut.28 47. Bccaufe thoufe*- 
vedft not the Lord thy God with joyfulnefs and gladne'j of heart 
for the abundance of all things V >r .48 .7 'hert fere fh i/r thou few e 
thine enemies fthich the Lord ft* U fend againft thee, in hunge~ , 
and in thirft 9 and in nakfdnejfe^ and in want of all things , 


An unchearful Chriftian ufually is unthankful, and feeds more 
upon hisVants then his fruitions-, his uncomfortable walking 
is the fhame of a good God, the grave of all mercies , a (tum- 
bling-block to other?, and ordinarily provokes fome fpecial 
crofs upon himfclf. Be it that thy eftate is none of the largeft, 
yet value fomewhat the prefence of God , and the blefling of 
God. Elkanah valued himfelf to bebetter then tenfons tohu\Sim.\$ 
wife Hannah. And is not Gods prefence and love able to an- 
fwer many, many a thing? is it not better then a Kingdom? 
No more but this, God gives unto thee thefe comforts that thou 
mighteft ferve him comfortably. 

6. Laftly, Be for ever faithful to that Qod, who is mofl honn- Be for ever 
tiful untijcH. As he hath known you above all the people in faithful co that 
theworld, fodoyou ftedfaftly adhere unco him above all t he^ odw | loi$l0 
people in the world. God gives unto you the bell of conditions, ^^ u l0 
then there can be no motive to draw you away from the paths 
of rigliteoufnefs : You can never better your fclves • you muft 
neceflfarily change (if you do fo) fortheworfe. More honour, 
and dignity, and riches, and fuch like advantages, they may be 
Arguments to D mfthe«es % to Judas, to'DewJs, who limply 
conceive a greater accefs of worldly ftate, by a greater excesin 
flnful ftates. But they are no Argument* to him, whole con- 
dition is already the beft. He can get nothing either in fpirituv- 
als or in temporals by defertingof God . what /hall a mam five 
in exchange for his foul, faid Chrift? Happy arc rhou CO 
Chriftian \) if thou knoweft thy happinefs. Thou haft the belt 
God, the beft Soul . the beft Earth , the beft Heaven. Kelt in 
thy condition : Thou haft reafon enongh to trample under 
thy feet all temptacion^co revolt Thy eft ate alre^dj is the left. 

N Having 

90 Ht m&ktih me \o lie down Vcr.2. 

Having finifhed the Sufficiency of the condition which Gocf 
provided for David, and the conveniency or gocdnefs of that 
condition , I now proceed to the third and laft particulars, 
The Wcl-pUa- which contain the Well- p leaf dnefs of Davids heart with this his 
fcdncfs of da- condition ,wrought in him by the God of his mercies. He makjth 
wis heart with m t0 n e ^^ & 6 . t an j fa / ea ^ s me ^ ^.^ There are divers 
his Condon. fe ^ of j yjng down . 

1 . In the Bed : when I lie down (faid Job chap J.ver,q.) I 
fay, when fhall I arife, and the night begone ? 

2. In the grave : Thtj /ball lie down alike, and the worms 
Shall cover them Job 21.16. This is a lying down in th£ Grave. 
Though men be unlike in the conditions of Life, yet they are all 
alike in the conclufions by death ; they wear different Gar- 
ments among the living, but all put on the fame Mantle of cor- 
ruption in the pit. 

3 . Miserable : We lie down in our fhame. So Jer. $2$. No 
people can long walk in their Sins, but at laft they are wearied 
out, and forced to lie down in their Sorrows. We will flie 
out with our Sinnings , but then lie down we muft in our 

4. Judicial: Hu bones (faid Zophar of the wicked, fob 20. 
<I I .) are full of the fin of his youth, "tohich /hall lie down with him 
in the dusl. Thofe fins which we would not forfake being Liv- 
viflg, they will not forfake us when we are Dead. The guilt 
attends us in Death , the pleafure of which we would not re- 
nounce in Life. They will be our Inditemeats before the Judg- 
ment Seat, which were our Seducements againft the Voice of 
the Mercy Seat. 

5. Comfortable : And this is either the fweet reft and peace 
of confeience (of which perhaps Z)rft//^fpeaks,Pfal.4.8. 1 will 
lay me down in peace) or the delightful compofare of the mind 
with our coaditions, of which David here fpeaks, Thou makefi 
me to lie down in green pastures. 

The Phrafe I confefs may note two Qualities more in his con- 
dition. 1. One, the Safety of it : That God did fo undertake 
his prote&ion,that he might fecurely reft himfelf. In dangers, 
ftanding up, is the pofture, but lying down is a gefture of fuppo- 
fed fafety. 2. Another, the Satiety of it : That God did fo 
accomodate the eftate he had and his minde together, that he 

Ver.2. in Green Fafhrts 3 tic. 9* 

was comfortably and delightfully plcafed therewith, as an eafie 
bed to lie on, as a pleafant good to feed on. And therefore 
miftake not the Phrafe. He muketh me to lie down in green ft* 
ft*res. It doth not at all import a carelefs, voluptuous, idle 
life, but only a contented, well-pleafed and comfortable 1 fe. 

The Proportion is this, ^ « 

That God doth give hus people minds and hearts wel-pleafmgly , ^ , doihlifi 
and comfortably % and quietly to pojfefs their outward conditions. h{ £ people 
He doth not only give unto them the things, but the fruition of bears mil- 
things ^ not only prefence, buc enjoyment; nor. only bread , pU»fit»|ly to 

hut power to eat it- not only a portion, but a powir to tafait po " cls . tht,r 
i • • .v • / • c- r> i • r- i r o t i • u outward coa"* 

and to rejoice Wttb it. So Solomon, \n Ecclel 5.10,19. 1 mshar-^ ic j ons 

mony ofwell-pleafednefs, you may perceive in f*c(b, defcant-Piai.^.6. 

ingon one moiety of his eftate, I mean, his children, Thefe are 

the children which God hath gracioujly giver, thy fervant ,Gzr\. 

32.5. "David is in the fame key, in divers places ; read Pfal. 

16.8 & 11^.65. Jabtz obtained the fame in 1 Chron.4 10. 

And 7^«/had it even to admiration in PW.4.1 1,12. But for 

the Explication of this AfTertion , thefe inquiries mull be fatif- 


1. What this quiet and comfortable well- plea fed nefs with 
our temporal condition is > 

2. How, and in what refped: God gives it to his peo- 

; . Why given to his people > 

4. Then what ufefull Application of this to our 
felves ? 

Queft. i. what this comfortable or quiet weH-pleafednefs with What this wel- 
cur ffiate u ? plcafednefswitb 

Sol. I conceive of it thus • It is afinguUr fift of Godfiktrt- our cftacc is * 
by ourmindi do approve, andour Wills and afftclitnt remain fi~ 
tisfied and delighted With thofe outWard blejfings which are be- 
ft we'd upon tu in any tynd. 

1. It is a fin^ular gift of Gcd^ There is in Mufick the In- it is afuitulac 
ftrument on which w: play, and the Hand with which tyeftrtke Gift tf God 
it, and a certain mu'.ical skill. Without that certain mufical 
skill, the hand may nfc andflrike the internment, make a found 
and a jir, but that fpccial Skill or Art is it which makes the har- 
mony. Thus is it in our pofT;ilicns : there is the eiiate, snd 

N 2 there 

92 He maketh me to lie down Vcr. 2 

there is the mind, and there is the weli-pleafednefs. The eftate 
may in fome fenfe be the Legacies of men • and our minds may 
be reckoned the gifts of nature, but to have our m-nds harmo- 
niouQyconfenting with thofeeftates, this is thefpecial gift of 
God. Solomon expreflfely calls it the gift of God v in Ecclef.5. 
AndS. Paulft.\ksittb.e[lrengtbofChriJl/Vh\\ 4. Pfal. 16.6. 
The lints are fallen unto me in pleafant places, jea t I huve a giod- 
Ij heritage. In the former verfe David fets out his happinefs 
[The Lord i<s the portion of my cup y andof mine inheritance, thou 
maintaineftmy lot.~] In this verfe, his well-pleafednefs with his 
outward condition which God had allotted him, he looks on ic 
as pleafant and comely, we may be considered in a threefold e- 
ftare, either, i.In our fretted eftate, where, asGodfawe- 
very thing whkh he made to be good, fo man was delighted 
with that condition as bell:. 2. In our Corrupted eftate: and 
tere comes in a threefold jar by fin ; One with Cy«i, a fecond 
with ottr [elves, and a third with our conditions : As the earth 
was curfed to bring forth thornes of moleftation , fo our hearts 

gre rnrfpr^ and bring forth thornes of vexation. The ft a is not 

more full of tofling waves , then our hearts are of unquiet dif- 
likes. We are inordinate in our Love , impatient in our De- 
fires, and alwayes reftlefs with our Fruitions. 3. In our re- 
newed eftatej, where divine grace doth difcovcr , and in fome 
meafure cure all thofc principles of difcord with our eftates, as. 
the vanity of our minds , the miftakes of our judgements, the 
covetoufnefs of our wills , the prideofour fpirits, thedifcon- 
tentment of our affe&ions, &c. and in ftead of them, plants in 
usquietingand well liking qualities of Faith, of Meekncfs, of 
Humility, of Patience, of Self-denial, of Sound Judgment, and 
Heavenly Wifdom , of Contentment and Thankfulnefs, &c. 
Divine Grace is that to well-pleafednefs as health is to the bo- 
dy- while ficknefs is upon us the beere hath an ill tafte, and the 
meat doth fmell , and the chair isuncafie, and the bed is too 
ihort, and the night too Jon<?, and the day too troublefome, all 
is amifs becaufe our b dies are amifs. But when Health comes, 
all is fuddenly turned, the palate then doth tafte and relifb, our 
lodging is eafie, we can fleep in the night and work in the day, 
all is well becaufe we are well. Thus here, while we are meer 
finners, wc canquarrel with every mercy ^ this is a burden, , 


Vcr.2. in Green Pa(tures,&c. 93 

that's a crofs, we would be rid of this, we miflikcthat; we 
are weary of God, and weary of his mercies, and many time? 
weary of our fclves. But when grace hath healed our diftem- 
pered natures, then our eyes do fee, and our hearts do like all : 

we fee houfe to be mercy, wife to be mercy, husband to be mer- 

cy, children to be mercy, eltates to re mercy, all to bt good, 
very good, becaufe God hath made us to be fo. So that this is 
a truth, well p'eafedncfs with our condition is Gods fpecial 
gift, forFirft, Heonely hath power over our minds to fet them 
right. Secondly, He oncly can cure the principles of diflike, 
and Th:rdiy,Hc onely can enable us with the principles of well- 
pleafednefs, ergo 

2 l r. \s the caufe of it is above us,fo the Seatofwell-pieafeclnefs The fear of 
is within tu. The Soul is the general feat of it, but in particu- weli-pleafednefj 
lar, the mind of man and his aft ft ions. A man is as his mind is, iswuhin °»« 
and theeftate of a man is as his mind is : If his condition hath n l c m 
all the reall conveniences and refpc&ivcneflcs to his wants that 
may be, if yet his mind doth not believe and judge it to be fo, 
there will be no well-pleafednefs. 

It isrot theprefence of what we do poflefs, which caufeth 
well-pleafednefs with it. We oft times think thus, had we 
fuch a comfort more, or had we this a little mended, then all 
would be well with us • but we are nv (taken : the wine may be 
fweet, and yet every pallate cannot relifh it •, nothing will quiet, 
which comes to an unquiet fpirit •, you muft make the fhip to lie 
Hill, before you make the goods to lie (till. Till you can bring 
your minds to fee the fpecial providence of God towards you 
in all your eftates, and to fee the peculiar ferviceab'enefs ( as it 
were) of his mercies imto your occafions, and likewife to judge 
of them as every way belt fuiting, and agreeing, and anfvvering 
your proper and juft exigences , you wJl never be well 
plea fed 

The Mind which is the feat of Weil-pleafednefs, muft have 
in it • 

A power of Observation, to mirk the wayes and erTeds of 
Divine Providence. 

A power of 'Dijudication, todifcern how proper and con- 
gruous our conditions are ± 

A power of D.terminulon, to approve of our allotments 

94. & e Maketb me to lie down Ver.2. 

and to reft fatisfied ; I have enough, fofeph my (on it yet alive 
(faid Jacob) fo here the Chriftian, I have confidered all things, 
and I do find upon the accompt, that the lines are fallen unto 
me in pleafant places, 1 have a goodly heritage : I do confefs 
that the wife and good God hath indeed provided for me the 
raoft proper and beft mercies. 

Jn the Will *'• But then as a Mind approving the condition, fo tike- 

and Affc&kms wife the will and Affttlions complying with the condition are 
the feat of this well- pleafednefs too. A man may fee reafon 
enough to like what he pofTeffob, and yet he may have no 
comfortable fruition of it at all : If his will be fro ward and 
murmuring and his affections impatient and grieving, is there 
any harmony now in this? No : But thus it muft be; The 
Mind muft difcern and approve,the Will muft ele& and confenr, 
and the Affections muft rejo;ce in the condition as good, and 
this is Well pleafednefs. 

Howfardo:h jQ^ft- 2 - How far forth God doth give th's unto his 

God jive this [people ? 

to his people.? Sol. I anfwer ^ 

^^ofhab- Firft ' Tne y haveicinrer P cA of habitual Mfpofuioyt : there 

tuaUifpofw'on^ a natureof well-pleafednefsin them, enclining, and difpo- 

fing, and exciting of them to judge well of their eftates, and to 

like them , and delight in them. 

And in rcfpeft Secondly, They have t in refped of * habit nal dcminiomconCidtt 

of hibfcualdc- their courfe and trade of life,and converfwgwiththeireftar.es; 

minion. Though as in the playing of a Jetfbn, a firing may now and then 

flip and jarre, yet the main is mufical ■ fo though Chriftians 

may now and then, in refped of particular times and occafions, 

be fretting with their condition, as Jonah ; or condemning of 

it, as^^jordiflikingof it, as ss4f>.fh\ yet you know the />*- 

tience of fob, and you read that iMftfk bejbrt^s himfelf, fo 

that habitual well-pleafednefs, had the habitual domini- 


They have it Thirdly.Tbey h*ve it but in mtafare *J\s not well-pleafednefs 
bu: in a mca- in the perfection of degrees which they have- 'tis a lefTon which 
Cure. t h e y are ftjji learning, they are not fo well-pleafed, but that 

they need to be better well pleafed. 
And but with Fourthly, And confequentlybut#;/& mixture. It is with 
a mixwic the minds of evil men, as with the flood of Noah t in its ftrength 


Ver.2. in Green Paflure^Scc. 95 

which covered all the earth, and the higheft mountains, To 
their minds are wholly covered with the depths of difpleafed- 
nefs: And with the minds of good Chrillians, as with the 
fame waters, but much abated : or as with a rofe which hath a 
fweet leaf, and yet many prickles about it, fo here is much fwcet 
well-plea fed nefs, and yet fometimes fome (harpnefs, fomerug- 
gednefs, fome diflikings. 

5. But then this is with cor.flitt. What the Apoftle fpeaks s ut t h cn ; t ,-, 
in general, that the (ffrit lufts againft thefle/h y and the flefh lufts nich confli&. 
a£Atn(l the fpirit , Gal. 5. 17. that is true of every particular 
Grace and its oppofite Corruption. The people of God have 
in them a principle enclining them to like and delight in, and 
to blefs God for their conditions: and they have in themalfo 
a principle of frowardnefs, pettifhnefs, enclining them to dis- 
like and to jarre with their mercies. Their corrupt nature 
doth diflike their condition, but their renewed nature doth dis- 
like thefe diflikings, and conflict with thefe confli&ings • and 
as they do attain their growth in fpirituals by oppofition,fo they 
do attain to further well-p'eafednefs by contention^ they do 
not approve any difliking rifings, or expreffions, nay they do 
condemn them, and grieve for them, and by much prayer and 
faith they do ftrive to keep the mind in tune, to be tl ankfully 
well-pleafed with all that God hath done for them, or on 

JQueft.i. Why doth God give unto his people a well pleaf-^'^ ^ <~>^ 
ednefs with their conditions. gjjk co feis 

Sol. Rcafons hereof may be thefe j 

Firft, His frtmife is that he *W// withhold no go*d tli-'g f rrrt1 G:csprom\(c 
them, Pfal 84.11. If he will withhold no good thing then heis to withhold 
will give unto them well-pleafednefs, which is a very goodn°&°od tbing. 

Secondly, The eftate cf the paly ( be it more or lefs) is a Th ( t ^ vt ct 
ble{je& eft Ate (as I have formerly (hewed ) The Lord blefftth the rod y is a 
the habitation of the juft, Prov.3.3 3. But blefled it is not, unlefs blcilcd tt»te. . 
well-pleafednefs be given with it : it doth not differ from the 
pofleflion of the wicked, who eat and grumble, i nd receive 
and curfe. Nay no eftate were as good as an unpleafedcefs with 
a fair eftate: if our minds approve them not, it is with us as 
with an arm out of joynt, which is no help but a very torment 
unto us. Tlurcu 

$6 Hemakttbmetolie down Vcr.2» 

The Lord Thirdly, The Lord ftoutd have his people to be exceeding 

would have his thankful unto him for what he gives, and likevvife to ferve him 
people to be according to his great goodnefs. A dilliking heart is alwayes 

him" C ° an unthankful hcarC : he muft firft makc chem t0 b * well pleaf- 
ed with his mercies, if ever he would find them thankful for 
them-, nor can they be made reafons of better fervice, unlefs 
firft we fee them and like them as fruits of kind loye unto 
Vfe i. Doth Cod accord the minds and eftates of his people, give 
It may inform unt0 tnem tne beft cttates and the beft minds to be well pleafed 
us that God and delighted, to lie down in their Green Paftures > then it may 
hach but a few inform us, that God hath but very few people on earth. The 
becau r e n but r a ' philofo P hcr H 8 hted a candle > and Iooked a ™°ngft a multitude 
fewwdl «'ieaf- °f men t0 ^ nd a raan 5 and c ^ e P ro F net would have them to 
ed with their ?** t0 ° and fro through the flreets of the City to find a righteous 
condition. man. The fame may we do through the world, and run, and 
fearch whether you can find a man or a woman well pleafed 
with their conditions. Look on Miniflers , any people, and 
charge, and living, pleafe them better then what they have: 
their people are fo unreachable, and their means is fo fliort, and 
their labours are fo inerTe&ual, and their re fpe&s are fo few. 
Look on Trade/men, any calling is better then theirs -, every one 
gets more then they, they have fo many loffes, andfo many bad 
debt%?nlfuchthincuftome, and luchanha r d time of it. Look 
mo families ^ either the husband purpofely abandons the wife, 
for he likes her not ; or the wife (he is abroad with others, for 
{he cares not for her husband • or if you find them together in 
place, yet they are afunder in their affections. He is not the 
covering of the eyes to her, and {he is not the pie .{/ant Roe to 
him Defcend from that relation to another- Of Parents 
and Children : The Children they complain of the Parents, 
that they are tooharfh: the Parents they cry out of the chil- 
dren that they are too loofe and ftubborn. Or from them per- 
ufe the relation of Makers and Servants : What one fervanC 
almoft of a thoufand that is pleafed? either one Matter wants 
rtl*'jrii », or acother wants compajjion^ or another wants bounty : 
or the like exceptions have the Matters againft the Servants, ei- 
ther they are too flw, or too pre -ud, or too negligent or too 
unthrifty , ftill too coo 'An dutiful. Of ail men we conceive thac 


Vcr.2. in Green Pa/lures, &c. 97 

men might) in ejlates and in honors, they ihould be well pleafcd , 
who have barns full of corn, chefts full of money, daycs full of 
honour, but like the higher Cedars and Trees, thofe of higheft 
place are toflfed and bowed, and banded with perpetual agitati- 
ons of endlefsreftleiTnefs anddiflikes. And for poor men they 
conceive that they have a difpenfation to murmur and cla- 
mour, and vex, and to fpendall their dayes in unchankfulnefs, 
aod unquietnefs. What was fpoken of the hou'es of the Egy- 
ptian.^ there wjs not one houfe nhere there wot not one dead, that 
may be fafely faid of all the houfes on earth there is not an houfe 
wherein there is not more or kfe, a perfon difpleafed with his 

Four things I will briefly propound unto you, 

Firft, the Greatnefs of this tin. Secondly, the caufes of it. 
Thirdly,the dangers of it. Fourthly, the helps and remedies. 

Firft, The greatnefs of this fin : by not being well-pieafed and The greatnefs 
quieted with our conditions. of this fin. 

i. It is a Debafmg fin : the more Atheifm ismixt with any . 
finning, the greater is that fin- for now we do not onely fin^ 158 cbalin & 
againtt God, but do as it were un-God our God. 

And what is a difpleafednefs with our conditions, but even a 
fecret denial ofGod?we do judge our God,fit upon him in judg- 
ment for his ads of providence • as fofeph would have directed 
the hand of his father in point of biefling, &c. And if we 
deny the attributes of God, we do virtually deny God himfelf 
(for he isefpecially the fame with .his attributes) Now if we 
be fo outragioufly difpleafed with our conditions we do ac 
cufe God that he wants wifdom , that he knows not what is 
good, and beft for us. It is a (inn : ng with an high hand, and 
therefore the more hainous and fearful. 

2. It is a mnft unkjndim. Ingratitude (even in the conllru- Ic h *n unkind 
ftion of the Heathens ) was fuch a fin, he was furpofed to""' 
be ftained with any fin, who was guilty of chis • and God takes 
notice of it as a fowler blemifh, Do you tktu re quit t the Lord ? 
Now to be habitually difpleafed with our condition?, what is it 
but unkindly to render for the kindnefsof Gods 1 >vc and mer- 
cy ? for a man to fall out with his kind friend, is a foolifh acl: • 
but to fall out with him for hs kindnefs, this is an intolerable 
mifcarriagc. If the Lord (hould lay bonds upon our feet , 

O aches 

9 8 He maketh me U lie down Vcr. z ; 

aches on our bones, ficknefson our bodies, loffes upon our e- 
ftates,yet ought we to bewellpleafed therewith in regard of that 
authority he hach over us, and in regard of our finful guile 
which deferves much more mifory then we do feel ^ w* may 
quietly fay with Job, Shall we receive good at the kinds of God % 
and not evil? But when the Lord in ilead of mifery (hall ex- 
prefs mercy •, not one mercy, but many ; not improper, but 
convenient mercies ^ not xhinne, but deeper mercies : give a 
manftrength, and health of body, multitude of friends, fuccefs 
in trade, an ingenuous and meet yake'feliow,perhaps religious, 
beautiful, and goodly children, fpread a table for him from one 
end of the year to another, nay fupply him not onely for meec 
necefiity but for variety * And this perfon fhali no w never eac 
but curfe - y never drink but vex ^ never look on a mercy but with 
an evil eye,a flighting thought,a difpleafed fpirit,cannot talk but 
he murmurs, cannot fleep but he fighs, cannot be alone but he 
weeps, but he frets, but he repines, as if he were weary of 
mercies, of God, of himfelf.. Ah 1 how fowl, hew fordid a 
return is this ? I blefs thee, may God fay, and is this an- 
fwered well by thy curfing of me? 1 feed thee, and thou rageft- 
I clothe thee, and thou vexed-, I provide for thee and thine, 
and yet thou difrcliifheft all my love, all my goodnefs, all my 
It*s a moft un- 3 • ^ tls a mo ^ unreafonable fin : 'Tis true that there cannot 
icafonablc fin/ be any juft ground for any man to fin, yet fome kinds of finning 
may affume more Apollogies then others. As when a maa 
commits a fin through, ignorance^ he may pretend that if I had 
had knowledge to havedifcerned it, I would not have fo adven- 
tured : and when the poor man fteals,he afTumes an Apollogy, 
had I riches, or had I bread, I would not do it a . But this kind 
of finning, to be difpleafed with Gods merciful providing for 
us, is like the theft of a rich man when he fteals from the poor, 
there is no caufefor him fo to do, and it is without all excufe, 
When the Lord took away Jonas's gourd and Jonah was there- 
with difpleafed, Doe ft thou well to be angry t faid God unto him 
i. e. is there any fufficient caufe given unto thee for this diftem- 
per. But fuppofc you had feen Jonah fretting and vexing him- 
felf under the comfortable (hade of his gourd : might not the 
qucftion then have been put home unto him, doe ft thou well to be 

angry $ 

Ver.2. in Green Pajlurcs^&c. 5 9 

angry} This is our very practice : when God gives us many 
mercies, many fweet comforts, and by the prcfence of them 
fhadcsus from many mifcries and troubles, yet even under the 
fhadow of his mercies are we grumbling, and murmuring and 
difpleafcd. What Apollogy? what. plea? what ground for 
this ? if we wanted the mercy, we might pretend fomething , 
but enjoying the mercy and yet repining, it is a fin the more 
intollerable, by how much the more irrational. 

4. It is a very finning fin', my meaning is, that it is a fin It i* a very firv 
produ&ive of many fins ; a womb as it were or a fountain of ninjiin, 
them. The Harlot or Adulterefs is in Scripture reputed one 
of thehighelt tranfgre(Tors,not only in a formal fenfe.becaufe of 
the abfo'ute vilenefs of that fimbut alfo in a caufal fenfe, becaufe 
of the producrivcinfluence of that (\v\.(he encreafeth tranfcrtfiirs^ 
faith Solomon. Ill plcafedncfs with our conditions, it is a kind 
of a mother fin, a fin which brings forth many fins. 

Sins of tmijfion, taking off the mind and heart from many 
duties which ©therwife would, and fhould have been performed, 
of counfel, of love, of mutual prayer, mutual help. 

Sins of intermifsion : filling the mind in holy duties with 
abundance of earthly and finful thoughts. 

Sins of commifsion : O how much malice? how much re- y 
venge ? how much heart-burning ? how much defaming ? how 5 
much unbelief? how much pride ? how much wrath? crc. 
live, grow warm and ftrong by this fin : Nay fometimes b!af- 
phemies againft God, fometimes the murthers of others, and 
fometimes felf-murthers •, thefe arc the fins of fins, yet owing 
of themfelves oft-times to an heart ill-pleafed with its condi- 

Secondly, the Catifes of thUdiffleifedneffc with our rendi- Th? caufcj of 
tions . Befides the general caufe, which is that (Infill difeifcd-difplttlcdntfi 
nefs in our natures {a difeafed man c.tn U\e nteking) chere* lc . ho,Jrcon - 
are many peculiar and more immediate grounds thereof/ 1101 "* 

1 . A /fecial vanity of mind y which makes us quxkly fick and A fpedal rtnl- 
weary of every condition : as it is with a weak ftomack there it*l ct :hc a;inJ - 
a kind of ftfiidinm upon it, that it cannot infill on onedifh 
long but it delires a change of ditt. The like vanity is there 
upon our fpirits which cannot fetle on any outward thigg lung, 

O 2 but 

ioo HemAkethmetolic down Vcr.2 

but it longs to be rid of it, and skip from it, as the Bee from 
one flower to another: whiles a mind onely vain, meets with 
an objedt that is onely vanity, it cannot be much or long pleaf- 
ed, becaufe not at all fatisfled. 
A fooiifli crrc- 2 « ' A/W//& errcneovfnefs of hmW, creating a kind of happi- 
nioufncifcof neffe and perfection in the creature, as if it were fufficient to 
ojind. breed abfolute comfort and delight ^ the which whiles we 

fondly fancy, and finding experimentally inftead of allfatiety, 
much defed and many unanfwerableneffes : now we grow dif- 
pleafed and murmuringly accufe our conditions, as Rachel did 
Jacob becaufe he gave her not children ; that they are but a 
barren womb, or a dry tree, or a brackifh rirer, or a broken 
arm, This is ever true, that he who over-rat.es the creature, 
will either be difpleafed that it falls fhort of his expectation, or 
elfe will run himfelf into further troubling diflikes by repeat- 
ed eiTaies of another condition then his own. Whereas in 
truth, to draw full contentment from any worldly thing is no- 
thing elfe but the ftudy of the Philofophers ftone, which breaks 
many a mans brain and eftate to make mountains of gold, 
when onely the fhewof it is all that can be attained and no 
more We do fruitleflely vex our hearts and opprefle our 
conditions, and (hall never be pleafed, whiles we believe that 
the outward things which we poflefTe or expeft, can be an ab- 
folute good unto us, or efficient caufes of well- pleafednefle to 
bur minds. 
Envious com- $. Enviovu comptrifon'* when we caft an ill eye on our own 
parKon. eftates, becaufe God doth caft a good eye on another mans 

condition. The Heathen faw this truth, that InvUtu alterius 
rebus macrefcit ofimis • Another mans Palace, is the envious 
mans Prifon. It is a frequent experience, that as a man of 
moderate ftature feemsbuta Dwarfe if he (lands by aGyant, 
or a woman of real comlineffe but a homely creature when fhe 
ftands by another of rich attire and fingular beauty • fo whiles 
we^compare our convenient eftates with others exceeding con- 
dition?, their Sea fwallows up our River, and we aie mod apt to 
diflike our Giove becaufe it is nctaTorreft : On, other mens 
/^■"""'"cEiidren they can behave themfelves thurand thus ; others fer- 
vants they are fo and fo careful, and diligent ^ others wife thus 
and thus loving j others houfes and tables thus and thus fur- 


Vcr. 2 . tr; Green Paflures^&c. 131 

niflied,others are thus and thus refpe&ed and applauded. This 
is juft Hamans diiremper, whofe heart was almoft broken be- 
caufe the King put honour upon Mtrdecai, though Human had 
honours and eitate enough, as much as would have ferved forty 
better men then himfelf. And it was Ahabs difquietment too , 
who though he had a kingdom, yet envying Naboths Vineyard^ 
he could not eat nor deep. 

4. Vnthankful Comparifons , And indeed odious, when we uotiu^uy 
do not compare our conditions with our own deferts (which Companions. 
were away to make us acknowledge Gods mercies, and to blefs iniqmcompi- 
for any thingjbut the worft of our own conditions with thebeft fttt *ff*fi* "»• 
of other mens. There is in every outward condition , aliqmd tcr ' " l ^ lTAUt 
velatum®* aliquid revelatum^ there is the skin of it, and the 
flefh of it -, the foot,and the (hoe • the body, and the garment. 
Even they who feem to enjoy all delight to outward appea- 
rance, yet look into their clofets and the utraoft and inmolt 
rooms of their eftates, they have many lingular inconveniences, 
they are put upon hazards and fuch ltreights of confeience 
fometimes,thata poor-honeftman (if he knew all,) would not 
change his brown bread with them for all their greatnefs. But 
now this is our grofs foolifhnefs , we look only on the outfide 
of other mens conditions, what friends they have, what refpe&s 
they have, what confluence of honour* and wealth they have; 
what variety of diet and attendants they have, and fo we fee no- 
thing but that which to fome is a kind of heaven upon earth. 
And as for our own conditions, our eyes are fixed only on our 
fores, our Arithmetickcan caft up no mercies but mi feries 3 
fuch a lofs, fuch a crofs, fuch ilightings,fuch hard dealings ; like 
Solomons Chapmen, who fay of our condition? they are n.ufg'.t 3 
they are tnu*ghr> 9 or like the Church,C'?#f and fee if there beany 
forrotv like my for row ! What well-pleafednefs can pollibly be 
expected from u$, whiles we drown our own mercies, and look 
on nothing but our miferics and yet veil all the nv feries of other 
men, and fee not the clouds and nights, but only their day and 

5. Proud Arro^aticy. There are three things which will in- PiouJ Aire- . 
dine us to diitaite our mercies. One is when we make them but !*■**• 
Tributaries to our merits, as if they were only the real due to •gJJJjj '^Sm 
our deferts ; whereas they are almes to beggars, Another is * t -„ 3 > A \ 


lot He maketh we to lie down Ver.2 . 

when we make our (elves the only Judges ©f good and evil. A 
third is when we will make our conditions the Slaves of our 
Lufts. The proud man is guilty of all thefe, and therefore he 
cannot but be difpleafed with his condition. For, he cannot fee 
mercy to be a free Gift, but a juft Debt- as if God did owe 
him the Homage of Providence. Nor can he fubjed: his ftouc 
Spirit to theWifdom of Divine Difpenfation •, a vain wan Is 
he, and Mould be wife, though he be like a Vvild ajfts colt, Job i r. 
12. And whatfoever he hath, he makes it thefervantof 
fome luft or other, which is alwayes craving and draft- 
Infidelfcyjove- ( - There might many other caufes be added why we are difplea* 
roafnefs,txccc- fed with ouroutward conditions-^ infidelity sovetoufne'sjxcee- 
din^nefs in af- dingnefs in «ffet1icn t corrupt endsVlhiih We fet up,unto which our 
fcftion^orrupccQnditionsarenot fufficiently and ftrangely enlarged ; ingra* 
€n( * s# tit 'ude of Spirit \ remiffenefs in feeling and obtaining fpiritual 

graces, which only can heal and tune the fpirit. 

But I (hall not enlarge on them , but proceed to the third 
General, which is, 
The danger of The dangers of difpleafednefs with our conditions. I will 
DifpleafedncCs reduce them unto two heads : 
with our condi- x . it Shortens many excellent things. 

on - 2. It Great ens many fore evils,. 

It (hortens , I- It Shorting 

Our Graces i. Our Graces : (if we have any. ) Difp ! eafednefs with our 

conditions, it is either a lock to bar out Grace, or elfe a drop 
to quench and diminifh it. That man is an enemy to himfelf 
in Spirituals, who is a friend to his diflikes in Temporals. It 
hinders Grace, i. In the Alls of it. The (baking hand is 
not fit to write, and the wounded foot is not able to go, and 
the turbulent foul is notfo difpofed to believe , or repent, or 
converfe with God. 2. In the Degrees of it : An unquiet pa- 
tient makes but a flow recovery , and turbulent ftormes a long 
voyage. A mind habitually poiTeft with diftafte of its outward 
condition is ufoally leaft fruitful-, for every new diflike is a new 
wound, or a relapfe which fets us back in Grace. 
Oar Duties 2 - Our T^m/ : We never fall out with Mercies, but we 
muft fall out with Duties • a difpleafed heart is either a deftru- 
dionor a diftraftion, O how many prayers are either omit- 

Vcr.2. in Green Paflures y 8cc. 103 

ted, or fcattcred ? We can neither counfel nor comfort others, 
we can neither ferve God nor men. Rented thoughts, and dif- 
pleafed heart?, are neither fie to hear God nor to feek God • 
they are like a phrenfie, wherein the mad man is uncapable both 
to command and obey. The Word can do us no good,becaufe 
not received with Meeknefs- and our Prayers are loit,becaufe not 
performed in Charity. If we are not in charity with our eftates, 
we aitf not in charity with God ; and can God be pleafed with 
that feryicc which comes from an heart difpleafed with his 
goodnefs ? 

3 . Our Comforts : As God fai'd of a rebellious perfon, Write Our Comforts 
that man chiU/efs, the fame may be faid of a difcontented per- 

fon % Write that man comfortlefs. His very mercies are a bur- 
den,and all about him is but as a bed of fJcknefs. Good is upon 
him, but he fees it not ; and blefiing, but he knows it not. In 
the midft of Sufficiencies he feeds only on the bread of Afflicti- 
on ^ and though his Cup doth overflow , yet he drinks only 
the Wineof Afpes, and the gall of Wormword. Difpleafed - 
nefs tvith our cond tions is like the Leeches, which do fuck only 
the worft and melaneholick blood; or like the Eele^ which 
lives in the filthieft mud • or like the /7j,which mars the good- 
ly ointmeat j or like the Gangrene, which makes fore the ftron- 
geft joynt. It Fly-blowes all our comforts, and darkens our Sun 
at noon-day ; makes us Jailors only, whereas we might be Free- 
holders of our eftates. It levens and foures the whole life 
with imaginations of evil,with diflikesof good,with complaints 
againft what we have , and reftlefs purfuits after what we 

4. Our CMe rcies : There are two forts of Spirits in men, Q M . 
there is the Unbelieving Spirit, and there is the Difpleafed Spi- 
rit : The Unbelieving Spirit is a tempeftuous mind, which nips 

and keeps off mercies. The Difpleafed or difcontented Spirit 
is a whirl wind which pulls off mercies : the one is a Caveat 
againft the receiving of good, the other is an Arreft to deprive 
us of good. Mofes he was (I fear) too much troubled with the 
burden of Government , and God prcfentiy eafed him of his 
Spirit, and put it upon others. Mofij was eafed of the Spirit by 
complaining, and we (hall be eafed of our mercies by grumb- 
ling and quarrelling. The meat will not ftay in the Stomach 

104 Hemakctbtnetoliedown Vcr, 

which likes it not • the Bee cannot dwell upon a thorn, nor 

mercy with a man who falls out with mercy. That God who 

is pieafed to heap up mercies on the thankful heart , doth often 

recall and draw them orTfrom the unquiet heart. The winter 

"quarter hath the (horteft daies and longeft nights : I befeeeh 

jhee bemore quietly thankful and contented, leaft thou beftript 

of all mercy who canft not be quiet with any. Pre long, when 

' iSod hath taken away thine husband , ©r thy child by death , 

then wilt thou better learn to know the worth of a mercy with a 

jquieted mind when thou haft learned the want offuch a mercy 

with a grieved and imbittered Spirit. 

Oar Life. 5- %&.% ota Life , which is a kind of glafs that holds all 

our Wine , or a thredon which hangs all our outward comfort. 
IxQj^fefsitisinitfelfbutafhortfpan, afhorttale, a fhort va- 
pour, a (hort flower • but by a difcontented, difpleafed difliking 
wiih our conditions, it now wattes and \oqvAs the fooner ■ like 
a candle , which confumes the farter by the fire : Difcontents 
fhorten our life, Jn a Natural way ^ for it is the rottenef* of 
"ouTFones, the burden of our fpirits ^ it often ftretcheth the 
golden cord, and fuddenly cracks the pitcher at the well. In a 
Judicial! way, while the meat was in the mouths of the murmu- 
ring and unquiet Ifraelites, the wrath oj God came upon them 
and (lew the fattefi of them, and [mote down tht chofen men cflf^ 
r^/,Pfal. 78.30,3 1. We read of ftrange judgments , andof 
Tudden judgments, and both of them deadly, befalling mutmu- 
ring, unquiet,difcontented,difpleafed perfons. Corah, Dathan y 
and Abiram murmuring and difpleafed, and the Earth clave ar* 
[under and [fallowed them up ., a Juft God fwallowed up tbeir 
^_ perfons who fwallowed up his mercies. He cruflied them with 
a weight of earth,who fwallowed up themfelves and his mercies 
s*ith their unthankful and murmuring tongues. And after this, 
many of thelfraelites murmured, and the Plague fuddenly brake 
in and deftroyed them • as if they were not fit co live who were 
not willing to bleflfe. 

I'G-eat:nsoiT S econ( My, Ic g r eatens not onely our finnes but our Bur- 

Burdens. W*f 

. 1 . Burthens in our Minds : which is now nothing elfe but a 

MindeT m ° W ^°P of Vexations,as well as a forge of Vanity : Th^ difpleafed 
man exquifitely proves his own tormentor. He needs no more 


Ver.2. in Green Pajlures,&.c. 205 

burthen but his own difpleafednefle , which fparkles and kin-^~ ' 

dies a World of vexing thoughts , and an Hell of deadly 

2. Burthens in our Confcience : It cannot be but that a gal- Bardfns in our 
led confcience (hould accompany a difquieted heart, the burden Confcience. 
ofdifcontent ever proves the burden of confcience. For as it 

tea great fin in it fclf (and therefore is the wound to confcience) 
fo it prevailed unto more fins , and therefore muft needs prove 
burdenfome to confcience. 

Now what a miferable kind of living is this, that ei- 
ther I am under the burden of difcontent , or elfe under the 
burden of confcience • either my condition troubles me, or 
elfe my confcience, for being troubled with my condition ■ 
that my daies journey is but from one Prifon to another Gaole. 
One while quarrelling with my mercies, and by and by quar- 
relled with by my confcience for that quarrel, now accufing 
and condemning my condition , anon accufed and condemned 
of my fclf for that unjuft and finful accufation, &c. Ah bre- 
thren ! think on it ^ your difpleafednefs and diflikes with your 
condition, will at length make your confeiences to fmart , as 
now they make your heads to ake-, that ever the mercies 
and kindnefTes of God (hould be thus anfwered and abufed. 

3. Hardens in our ajfetlions. Why ! what do ye by all your Burdens in tat 
diflikes but lade your hearts with more griefs, and reprefent to Affc<ai °ns. 
your hearts grounds of more fears; you (hall but ri'eupwith 
anqer,and lie down with forrow : your life is nothing elfe but 

a flame of anger, or a lump of fadneffe, or a deluge of tears, or a 
torrent of vexations. 

4. Laftly, You burden your felves with more Temptation. ^x^ tns w \ : ' n 
There arc five forts of perfons which aremofl- annoyed with more tempcati- 
temptations, The tender and unbelieving Chriftian, The dull ons - 

and melancholick man, the idle and the flothful man, the lofty 
and proud man, the difpleafed and difcontented heart. And 
not with mean and vulgar kinds of temptations, but with thofe 
which are of higheft and extremdt confequence. Thoughts of 
Atheifm, Blafphemies of God,Curfingsof God, and ^.cife-de- 
itruftion,all which might be plainly inihnced in, but that I mufl 
hailen to the lait thing, which contains, 

I ( urthlv.The Remedies of difpleafednefs with our conditions. T ' r ' 

p 1. ln° ** 

He maketh me to lie down Vcr. i 

g^§^5J^i i. In the general this is the main -, Get hearts to be Santtifi* 
hearts. ed % and then you will have hearts well-pleafed with your con- 

ditions ; it is not the variation of our eftates, but the alteration 
of our natures which will produce a well-pleafednefle. If thou 
hadft all the honour that ambition could mount unto, and all the 
dainties that fancy could devife, and all the wealth that cove* 
toufnefle could grafpe, and ail the k ndnefle that affection 
could long after,thefe alone would not make thy heart pleafed. 
it muft be fomething higher then the Creature, and better 
then the Creature, which muft make us well-pleafed with the 
Creature. Holinefleis that which caufeth well-pleafedneffe, 
or if you will take it in the Apoftles exprefiion , It is Godlimfs 
that muft bring content : And therefore the Apoftle having ex- 
preffed his admirable complying with every condition, reports 
unto us , that the ftrength which did thus enable him was the 
firengtb of Chri/r. According as Grace is, lb is our well- plea- 
fedneffe : much Grace,and much complying with our mercies l 
little Grace, and weak complying with them ^ no Grace , and 
no complying. For it is Grace which clarifies the mind, ret- 
ries the judgment, fubjeds the will, compofeth the affe&ions,, 
without which there is no agreement 'twixt a man and hise- 
Especially *et But in particular thefe Graces are diftincTly available to make 
the Grace of us quietly and comfortably to be fatisSed and well-pleafed with 

1 our eftates. 
Faicb. i. Faith: There are two quiet erTe&s that Faith will pro- 

duce. For the Future, that we (hall not want ; See Heb.x 3.5. 
For the Prefent^ that we are well : Look what the pillars are 
to an houfe , or the root unto the tree, or the anchor to the 
fhip, that is Faith to the Soul ; feeling, eftablifliing, and com- 
pofing it. When T>*Wfpeaks the language of Faith, then it 
is, / have a goodly heritage, Pfal.i 6. And Pauljwhtn he fpeaks. 
asa believer,then, I have all things and abound •, for Faith feeth 
God in the condition, the Love of God in it, the Wifdom of 
God in it, the FaithfuInelTe of God in it and his GoodnefTe e- 
very way ; and therefore fees all the reafon that may be, that 
we fhould be comfortably well-pleafed. The Lord is well- 
pleafed with my perfon, and why fhould not I be well-pleafed 
with my condition > Faith captivates our wills to Gods ; why 

Vcr.2. in Green Pajiures, &c. 107 

fhouldnot Ibewell-pleafed with the condition that my good 
God, my loving God, my wife God, my faithful God is plcafcd 
to allot unto mc. 

2. Humility. Give a kinfman fometimes a pound, aud he Humility. 
flights it • give a poor man a penny, and he is pleafed and thanks 

ybu. To the hungry foul every bitter thing u fwect, faid Solo- 
won, 'tis true of the humble foul, Co it every cftate is good. 
Have I much ? O thegreatnefs of mercy I Have I little ? O 
the goodnefs of mercy / Have I any thing? O thefreenefs 
of mercy I Have I nothing ? yet it is mercy. Mercy that I 
live, mercy that I breath, mercy that I am not in mi fery, mercy 
that I am not in hell. Come brethren, we quarrel with this 
mercy, and fall out with that •, if fuch a one were more loving, 
we would be more pleafed •, and if fuch a crofs were removed, 
we would be more quiet. Do not deceive your fouls ; fee the 
fpring of bitternefs , and the overflowing of thine own gall. 
Thou haft in truth a proud heart, and expeds that every perfon 
and every a&ion fhould veil to thy fullen humors . repent of it 
and befeech the Lord to pardon what is paft , and never leave 
till thou haft attained a more humble and meek fpirit, and then 
thou being well, all would be well about thee. 

3. Heavenly Wifdom would help to a large degree of com- Heavenly VVif- 
fbrtable well • pleafcdnefs with your conditions. dom - 

1. To acknowledg Imperfections in the Creature. 

2. To pafs by thofe Imperfections. 

3. To reprefs fpeedily all motions ofill-plcafednefs, to caft 
water upon the thoughts which arc the kindling of 
the fire. 

4. To efpy the peculiar ufefulnefs of our mercies and exi- 
gences in cafe we were deprived of them. 

4. Frequent comparifon of our eft ate s with others be low us e- Freqticn:com- 
very way : Art thou better then the poor creature that is ready P' ri ° n of .°" : _ 
to ftarve for bread ? what haft thou in nature to dirtmguilh 'h-VsbcU) 1 ^ uV! 
thee, or what in Grace? Well, look over one family, and 

then liften at an other. The children cry," and the parents weep, 
there J « fcarce bread for any, and not a penny to buy at all. 
Liften again and thou (halt hear oik? man curfing God, another 
curfing of his wife, another curfing of his children. How 

P z likes 

io8 He maketh me to lie down Ver.z. 

likes thou this ? O its ill! why then go home and learn to 
blefs God for thy condition. Thou haft meat, fo hath not e- 
very one ; thou haft raiment and houfe, fo hath not every one v 
thou haft a wife that loves thee, fervants that honor thee , and 
are faithful to thee, fo have not thoufands : Provoke thy heart 
from this ; is not all this mercy ? and is not mercy to be li- 
ked ? 
Be convinced 5. Be convinced of the fonlnefs of the fin ^ to be ill-pleafed 
ofthcfoulncfs with the condition which God gives unto thee. Aggravate it 
of the fin. f cen U p 0n t ky f ou j^ t m fharog an( j f orrow ar jf C| anc [ vehement 

prayer attend it, that God would reform and compofe thy heart 
with thy eftate. Should I be well-pleafed with God when he 
is juft, and not when he is merciful } with the efFeds of his an- 
ger, and not of his love ? Should I kifs his rod, and not blefs 
his bounty > fall down when he ftrikes , and not rife up when 
he embraceth } Would I like my child to kick and fpurn at 
me when I fmooth and dandle him ? would any like the wife 
which frowns , when the husband fmiies on her in love ? O 
the fin is moft evil which hath a quarrel agaiaft a good God / 
But being difpleafed with Gods mercies, I do not only judge 
him, but my own prayers, and mock God as it were ; for what 
are all thofe mercies but the fruits of his goodnefs, and my own 
prayers? Nor are they ordinary but peculiar mercies, fuchas 
* when I am my felf I fee I cannot want. Ah vile heart, which 
prayeft for the mercy, and yet quarrelleft; which fayeft it is 
mercy, and yet repineft, &c. Judg thy felf for this unkindnefs 
of requital, and make it a daily and diftind requeftatthe 
Throne of Grace, till God hath faftiioned thy heart and made 
it thankful andquiet,and delighting it felf in his goodnefs fhew- 
.. , ed unto thee. 

Prize, and leek 6 PrUe, and fee k more tarnefily for heavenly things which 
more earncitly r • « \ *. t .■» " . * J J J «* 

for heavenly refpeft thy foul, 

Vfe 2: JBe not fo much puffed up becaufe of thefe outward things, 
\ and the increafe of them. 
Content not ^ 1 . You are not the better by them • 2. No argument of 
yoU h WV hi S ^ any fpeciai love from God. 3. Yet you want your Ex« 
wath earthly £ cellencies, But ftrive for other things too. 



Vcr.2. in Green PaJltsres^Scc. 1C9 

Motives not to content our felves with earthly thing? , . 

Firft, They are but Minim* Bona, •, leffe then many things j hcv ar ' c b ut 
which are far lefle then graces. There are "Bona Maxima, zsMinimx Bom. 
Graces- and Bon* Media, as the Moral Virtues- and Bon* 
Minima, as Riches, Honors, ere Pibbles, not Pearls- plain 
work, not carved work, &c Their goodnefTe is not abfclute 
in rebut ipfis } b\it onely inftrumental quoad ufrtm. The ifirat- 
lites had panem pauptrum and panem A ngelorum. The poors 
bread, as the dough which they took inhatteoutof Egypt, 
c Deut,i6.i. The Angels bread Pf.78 25. Outward things are 
but panis pauptrum, the pooreft man, yea the worft of men 
may have them. 

Secondly, Spiritual mercies are, Bona maxim* & optima • $ p | r j tul ] mer . 
like David and his three Worthies, they excel 1 all the reft velux C i:s are Bqm 
inter ignes tuna minores ; or Solomons daughter. 1. Com- Maximx. 
pare their natures with all other qualities and created things ^ 
no creature fo excellent as holinefTe. 2. Converfant about 
the chiefeft good : all our Graces are buffed about God, Faith, 
Love, Fear, Zeal, Delight, &Ca 5. Formingof us unto his 
image, the moft excellent of Beings, making us partakers of 
him and like unto him. 4. Leading of us to beatitude in him, 
and with him, which is true and perfect felicity. 

Thirdly, Bona neceffaria, ex fuppofitione finis : The foul They are Bonn 
cannot be faved without them. We come into the world naked, Ncceffiru. 
and (hall go out of it fo, ftript of earthly things- they are in 
themfelves nothing to our eternal welfare, but Graces arene- 
cefTary ^ without faith, without holinefTe, &c. one thing is 

Fourthly, Tots are but half provided for, if yon have but tern- You arc fcur 
foral mercies : if you had but bodies onely, then earthly mer- half provided 
cies might fuffice ; or if there were no other life bur this: ^ ntyou b * vc 
earthly things are improper for the foul, and vain for an eter- ^rcifsf " 
nal condition. Man is a compounded fuppofitum of divers 
principles and therefore there muft be divers objects to refpect 
Fifthly,And onelj the worft half if provided firttht foul is more^ nd onc j ^ 
precious then the body- this is but the cafe, the (heath, the W0I halt ; s 
fervant, the hand-maid, and the concernments of the foul is prof ided k 
far greater. 



He refttrethmy foul.fkc. 


Sixthly, Nay in the event you have provided for ngtlHftg^fyou 

ov Wed for \fi* v * not provided for jour fouls, for a man is as his foul is, and 

ScIouibe°no! the eftate of the man is as the eftate of the foul is : if the foul 

provided for. hath not gracious qualities, it is an empty and miferable 

God is ready to Seventhly, The Lord is ready to give the Spiritual mercies as 
tfvc Spiritual, e jj as t y cor p ora / . ^ n d tte obligations are ftronger. 
as well as cor- r ° ° 



VcrHj. He rejloreth my foul, He leadetb me 
in the Paths of fyghteoufnejfe ? for His 
names fake* 

TH E Pfalmift in the precedent verfe declares the 
providence of God towards him in refped of his 
body , and in this verfe he proceeds to defcribe 
Gods lingular goodnefs towards him in refped of 
his foul. The foul needs a Shepherd as well as the body, and 
that Gcd who takes faithful care for the one, will exprefsas 
tender care over the other. The foul is not onely as indigent a 
fubjed, but alfo a more excellent fubjed then the body : To- 
wards which David (in this verfe) humbly and thankfully ac- 
knowledged Gods gracious refpeds, and the caufe or ground 


Vcr.j. Herejloretbmj foul,&c. HI 

Firit , The gracious ref$etts which God had of his foul 
were two, 

1. One was Reftoration[_He refloreth my fcttl y ~\ 

2. The Other was Condutlion \_Heieadeth me in the paths of 
right eoufnefs.^ 

Secondly, The impulfive Caufe or ground of this [Jor his 
names Jake."] 

There might be fome implied Propofuions obferved partly 
from the connexion of thefe words with the former, and part- 
ly from themfelves, i/.£. 

Propofit. I . That temporal mercies are net the Summa Totalis • C , mp me /" 

r ,,, ^ \ i n ' i • r ii r i cirs arc noc the 

of all that God bejtoVps on hx Jervants, hut he confers on them Summi xotMi 

alfo heavenly and f fir it ual mercies. Not onely Green Pa- i [all that GjJ 

fturcs and Still Wacers,but gracious Reiteration, and Guidance, bcflowci on his 

Godlirefs (faith the Apoftle) hath the prcmifes not onely of the i«vants. 

things of this life, but of the life which is to come , I Tim. 4.8. 

And David when he reports that the upright ,man (hall not 

want any good thing, tells us alfo that God will give unto 

him, Grace and Glory. 

The fervants of God muft have two things : 

1. Snchaswill make them good and holy, Temporal mercies 
cannot effect this. True Grace is an effect above the vigour 
of any earthly generation, and therefore S. Aufltn fpeaking of 
all outward things, faith well, that they are Bona yuje faewnt 

2. Such as will make them happy : So they are a people or- 
dained to glory, and therefore are called vejjels of glory ; now 
the very Heathens faw thus much, that happinefTe did not con- 
flit in riches, or honors, or pleafures : and the Chriftian fceth 
far beyond them, that hoi; neffe is the ftep to happinefTe. 

Which by the way briefly may advifi us, not to ace uu our ^jr e 
Conditions complete,nor our felves pnfently bUffed, if we find AUice, net to 
abundance $f Wealth, encrea/e of favtws from men, fu:ce[j? ins<C3:m:cu: 
our temporal undertakings : Fides divitia* ( faid S. Auf\\n jjjCoodWoiu 
Pfal 83. with him, but 84. with us. p. 636.) avud Latro*er/™^ :c , in 

j ? jet j<t- * j r/ • • r 'Temporal en* 

apud Impios, aptta Saleratos, apudTurpet, aprtd flagitious, j oymcnt j, 

cr Facinorofos vides divitias : (.<*.) you may find wealth a- 

■nong Thieves, among all forts of wicked men. Never boaft 

Spur fclnes of that, nor reft in that which if thou halt, is nothing 


H2 He refloretk my foul, &c. Ver.3, 

more then the worft man may have. # 

S. tAuftin in many places, and fo Tertullian fpeaks of Mar- 
garitas to comfort the Chriftian that he hath precious things, 
fuch as eye hath not feen, nor ear hath heard, faith the Apoftle. 
Thou haft exceffivefulnefle at thy Table, fo had 'Sel/baz.zar 
who quaffed in bowles of wine : Thou haft a mafle of wealth 
fo had Dives, fo had moft of rhe Canaanites whom God de- 
ftroyed : Thou haft dignities and honors with men, fo had Ha* 
mar,, fo had Herod whom Cod chaftifed : Oftendefidem, oftende 
innecentiam, cftende lachrymas ; thou canft {hew nothing that 
makes the Chriftian, or the happy man, unlefTe thou canft 
fhew faith, unleffe thou canft (hew holineffe, unlefTe thou canft 
fhew repentance, &c„ I will fay no more but this, thou haft 
no fpecial thing from God, thou haft no fmgular thing for thy 
journey, no proper thing for thy foul, no faving thing, unlefTe 
(befides thefe outward blefiings) thou haft alfo fpirituai gracer 
and mercies. 
God onely is Propoftt.z. Again another Propofition might be obferved, 
the Author of viz. That God onely is the author of all our blefsings, Temporal 
all our blcf- or spiritual. In the former verfe David acknowledged all 
" n * $# his Temporals from him, aad in this verfe all his Spirituals. 

S. fames ftiles him the father of lights, and of ever) good gift - y 
in c. i . 1 7. Temporal mercies they are the opening of his hand 
tp every living creature and his Sun {hining on the good and 
bad. Spiritual mercies they are the blefiings of his right 
hand, G V at U gratis data, fay the School-men, if they did ex- 
pound the fpeech as well as they found, and delivered it : What 
haft thou that thou haft not received, faith the Apoftle-, all the 
good we have is but a receipt, and therefore but a gift. And 
we are debtors to God for every mercy, and therefore God is 
the fole giver of all mercy. As every creature, fo every mercy 
calls God Father, it is a ftream out of his Ocean, a particular 
good from him who is the moft univerfal good. Children are 
cot onely his heritage, but alfo his gift -, Thefe are the children 
which ths Lord hath graciously given unto thy fervant , {aid Ja- 
cob : A wife, Solomon fsMs her the gift of God : Corn and fVine 
andoyl, hechallengeth them as his, Hof.2. And riches and 
honours are from him, as you may fee in the Proverbs. And 
for fpirituai blefivgs, of Election, Vocation, San&ity, jufti 


Ver.3. He rcjlorcthmyfeui&c. i*3 

lfcationand Glory, thefc are the mod diftinguifhing rr.ercies, ^*i"»$ ue 
but then faith the Apoftle, who hath made thee to differ } Thou H *T^2w 
didft not eled him, but being miferably fallen was gracioufly^^-^J 
eleded of him Eph.i.Rom.9. Thou didft not call him, buc^i* qmm 
wandring and flying was called home of him When thou mu (urn. Auft. 
waft loft, it was his pity that fought thee ^ when thou waft dead in Pf« l 37- 
it was his Grace that quickened thee •, when thou waft ex- 
tremely indebted, it was his mercy that Satisfied for thee, and 
ranfomed thee. 

This confutes the proud err our of the Pelagians, who vaunt Vfe 1. 
much in the power and ftrength of nature unto fupernaturals This confutes 
and fpirituals:, whom that impudent Grtvenchovins of late th f c P ro " li er ? oc 
fcems much to imitate who roundly anfwers the Apoftles quefti- ° n / c c *" 
on, who hath made thee to differ } Egcmet meipjum. 1 have 
made my felf to differ; and indeed fo he did from moftof 
men in excefle of arrogancy and pride. I know that they of 
old and thofe of late, Papilts and others, have their GlofTes 
and diftincftions ready-, as if we were but half dead, and the 
power were from God, and the clofing were from us. But in 
vain are thefe fhufflings, for it is God who cnelj quickens us, 
Eph 2. And rvorkjeth in us to Vpill and to do. 

Ncn eft devotionis dediffe prope Totum , fed fraudir retinuiffe c. ult. 
vel (JMinimum^ faid "Trofper rightly againft the Collator. It 
is not an humble devotion to acknowledge almoft all from God 
but a diflembling fraud to afcribe though but a very little to 
our felves. And therefore 'Ben^venture (huts up well, fere hu- p e p €r f c ft t 
miles tctp.m rtddunt r Deo y a quo totum kafont, quia jurti rens 7{(lig. 
(ft qui febialiquid retinet, cum Deus dic.it, Ghriam me Am aI- 
ten nan d*bo. You are but thieves, ftealing from Gods glory, 
if you do not humbly acknowledge all to come from h.s 

2. For our parts this: Since all our good (whether for foul R^urn th- 
or body) comes from God, Takj rve wfi care that all the (run l *\ s of«U 
of it return hac\^ unto his glo*j • of him are all things, and '? C r K /° Go " s 
therefore to him rr.uft all things pay tribute. O how we* 
fhould fall down and blefs that God who accounts no bleffing 
jn heaven or earth too good for us, who gives us the fat of the 
earth and the dew of heaven, all temporal mercies, all fpirinuil 
mercies, will be the Author of all good unto us : Can we do 

CL lefs 

U4 Hereftoretkmy foul^&c. Vcr.j. 

leffethen blefTe him, love him, fervehim, honor him. But I 
will not infill on thefe Proportions though proper to the Text 
and not improper for us. 

I now proceed to the Graces here conferred-, which are two, 
Rt ft oration and Guidance : 

He reftoreth my foul. 
There are feverai readings of thefe words, among Interpre- 
ters, animam meam convertitfo S. Auftin on the place renders 
iC, he doth convert my foul Animam meam quiet am (fficit % 
fo Junius and TremeUius render it, He doth quiet, or eafe my 
foul. Animam meam reducit y fo Rivetus reads it , He doth 
reduce or bring back my foul. Animam meam rec?eat, fo Fa- 
faitius He doth refrefhmy foul. The Original word will bear 
alraoft every one of thefe readings nj»SJ MW Naphfchi 
Jejhoueb, the verb hit in Hipbii fignifies to convert and to 
give reft, to revive as is were and to make one to return to him- 
felf,torefrefti, to breath new fpirits, comfortably tocompofe. 
More plainly thus,there is a twofold Reft oral ion : 

i. Oneis anim<e errantis, Of a foul that hath been wan- 
tiring from God, and this is nothing but fonverfitm. 

2, Another is anima Unguentit, Of a foul that hath 
been ianguiftiing under temptations, oropprefied with griefs 
that it is well nigrtfpent and fainting • and this is nothing but 
Spiritual Confolathn or Vivification. 

In this fenfe the word is ufed in other pkces, as Ruth 415/ 
He fhall be unto thee a Reftorerof thy life ^DJ D'^lbS La- 
mefiech Nephejh i.e. a Cheerer up , a Reviver, a Nouriflier, 
fo in Lam. 1. 16. and fo in the Greek CWat. 11. 28. 
KAya &v&'®&ijQ'uvy.cLs Come unto me all y? that are weary , and 
I will give you reft: and this I conjecture to be the proper fenfe 
of the word in this»place, and therefore they have not dived 
feriouflyinto it who here have infifted on converting Grace as 
if that were meant. For as much as reftoring of the foul, 
though pofiibly it may comprehend in fome other place , Re- 
generation or Converfion, yet punctually in this place it im- 
ports the refrefhing, comforting, lifting, cheering up of a de- 
jected, or oppreffed, or languiflhing fpirit which hath fuffered 
a Lipothymie or fwouning fit. The Proportion is this ; 
hp$r ThatGod doth cwfortabl} revivf 9 raiffftp 9 refreJb t or the- 


Vcr. 3 . He reftcreth my foul, &c. 115 

rijh the languiftjing and opprejfed fouls of bis [truants. God r^cch corn- 

There are divers forts, or rather orders of graces • there is ^'^by revive 
gratia prtveniens, which finds us ftark naught, and makes us |J*J c u h ^ ; 8 
really holy ; gratia fubfeejtirns , which is lometimes called 3n '^opptcfled 
Afiilling Grace, fometimes Exciting Grace, fometimes coo- lonlei of hb 
firming Grace, fometimes refrefhing and comforting Grace, fttraois. 
As it is with the body of man though it be truly informed and 
a&uated by the foul, yet the foul in fome difeafes and fits is as it 
were expiring and panting, the fpirits need to be fetched again, 
and the foul to be relieved : fo it is w ; th the foul of a Chriftian, 
though God doth give him renewing or preventing Grace, 
which makes him holy and living, yet he may be fo overcharg- 
ed with temptations, fo opprefTed with griefs, with fears, with 
defertions, with affiidions,that his foul is almoft gone, it is e- 
ven fpent and faints. Now when the Lord doth diftill fomc 
fpiritual vertue and vigour which fetcheth up the foul, He doth 
then reftore it, or comfortably relieve it. 

For tl c better opening of this aflertion, let us confider thefe 
particulars : 

Firft, The fcveral methods or wayes wherein the foul of a 
converted Chriftian may be opprefTed, furcharged, droop or 

Secondly , The fpecial methods of Gods reftoring,or refrefh- 
ing fach a foul with comfort. 

Thirdly, The reafons or caufes why the Lord is,asit were, 
the reftorcr of life and comfort unto the fouls of his fer- 

Fourthly, Then the ufeful application of all this 'to our 

Slue ft. 1 . what are the feveral methods or wayes wherein the The lev? ral 
foul of a converted Chriftian may be oppreffedand made to droop "*>" .*" **g 

ortanguifh? oppreifed^and* 

Sd. The chief of them I conjefture are thefe, vi*, maccco drojp. 

Firft, CenfcientioHs apprthenftons of finful guilt • when the ~ r . , 
guilt of tin and a working confcience meet together, this Sao- ^^tufon 
mon hah, is & wound that is infnpportable , Prov. 18. 14. and t tinlul guiir. 
David profefTcth it to be a burden that he is nor able tobe.*r t 
Pfa.l.38.4. It did trouble him andboiv him dorm greatly, v. 6. 
yea, by reafon of it he was feeble and fore broken. O Bre- 

Q^z thren ! 

n6 He r eft or et b my foul , Sec. Vcr.3. 

. 1 . ■ ♦> 

thren I The wrath of God apprehended for fin, is mighty in 
operation, chrift fweat drops of blood under it v ic isanar- 
row that tacks faft, and an hand which prefieth fore, it drink* 
up our fpbit^ and turns our moifiure into the drought of Summer. 
When thi Lord contends in this kind, the Spirit doth fail before 
him^ and the foul which he hath made. It muft needs make our 
fuuls to fhrivel and faint, when God (who is the onely life and 
comfort of it) (hall write bitter things againft it, and (hall 
let himfelf in order , and fpeak anger and difpleafure unto 

I fol nt opera- z ' ^ n f olent operation of finful principles : When a Chriftian 
ifon of finful" knowes that the motions of his nature are evil, contrary to the 
principles. law of God and glory of God, and he (hall conflict with them, 
but not prevail over them, pray againft them, and yet be moleft- 
ed with them , mourn for them, and yet be peftred with them. 
This did exceedingly tire out S. Paul and made him cry out 
O wretched man that 1 am, who fball deliver me? takaItsco^. 
i. e. <is£rumnofus homoperpetuis in ifta lutlu angoribn* divexa- 
tus f as Bez,z well expounds it. 
Inccffsntaf- 3' Inceffamt ajfaults of temptation : Thefe are apt to 

faults of cenv damp and fink thefpirit : They are an extreme burden, ftill to 
ptarions. be hurried, vexed, tofTed, with abominable fuggeftions of A- 
theifme or hlafphemy,or orhcr foul-oppreffing and diftra&ing 
Ira u\ vox*-f ^ lc ^ a ^ on5, *• Paf *t profeffeth that he was buffeted by then* 
ify. i Cor. 1 2.7. beaten as it Were black and blue •, andin the fame 

verfe he calleth them a Thorn which fomc tranflate a (harp 
«r*«A.«4- : Goad, others a (harp dart, others the (harp wood running in- 
to the foot ; it is a Metaphorical word by which is meant moft 
heavy pun&ions or diftreffes of mind. Judge a little whether 
it be not a foaking and trembling thing to feel thoughts fuggeft- 
ingmeto curfe that God whom I love above all, to blafphemc 
that God whom I honour above all, to flight that God whom 
I regard above all : One while to have attmy graces called in- 
to queftion, as if they were but a counterfeit hypocrifie ; ano- 
ther while to have all my comforts called into queftion as if 
they were but ungrounded delufions. To queftion all hope 
for the future and to fufped all experience for the time 
paft : thefe are deadly and grievous opprefiions to the foul 
of.fuch as feel them. ' 

4, Ami 

Vcr.2. Hc\refloretb myfoul^Scc. 1 1 7 

4. Ample and more permanent defer t inns : VVI.cn that the Ample and 
Sun is fee and rifeth not in many daies, and God draw» off the m3rc pcmi- * 
beams of his favour, which were the life to our fouls , and the ncm (ic ^ Icions 
joy of our falvauon,as£>4£^itiles it • David mourns and g^oes 

heavily becauleof this , and in fome places is ready to faint : 
Ethan was as a dead man by reafon of it • a nd A r aph now can 
find comfort in nothing. Surely if we have not contracted 
upon our felves (by our voluptuoufnefs of livitg, and m*cb neg- 
letl oj living Ordinances and lively Chriflians) a brawny fea- 
rednciTeanditupidity , it will make our fouls to (loop • Than 
the time was we did enjoy and fee the Lord in the beauty of 
mercy , in the goodnefTe of his favour and loving kindne(Te, gra- 
cioufly reconciled , gracioufly accepting of us, gracioufly 
meeting of us in his Ordinances, gracioufly inclining him- 
fclf unto us in the performance of our duties. But now it is 

5. Ntar andjlrong effHtlions : When a fly flanderer (hall fe- Near and 
cretly martyr and murder our names with reproach; this hadftrong tfflai- 
almoii broken Davids heart. And fo for fpecial lofles of fpe- on, • 

cial comforts, they arc like the opening of fo many veins which 
loofe blood and fpirits, they make us go heavily to our Graves. 
Sicknefles, perfections, injuries, poverty or any other kind of 
calamity, to which we are expofed in this life, are oppreflures , 
and fuch fometimes as do gr t nd , and much abate, or take dowo, 
andcrufh the foul. 

Under or againft all which God is pleafed to reftore- 
( .i, ) to bear up , revive, refrefh , flay the foul with com- 

Queft. 2. Hofr doth God refrffi and bear ftp comfortably Ho^God doth 
the joul that languijheth under any of thife kinds of oppref-tchcih the lan« 
fares? Suiting Lui. 

Sol. I anfwer, He reftores the languifhing foul, 

1. By hi* Word : This was that which quickned ^David'm^ his Word. 
his afflictions, and kept him from fainting, in Tfal. \9q. this 
reitoring Virtue is afenbed to the Word. Th la\\> of the L*rJ&» j H31W3 
us perfett, converting the foul • and the Apoftlc, Rom.l^.^. at-M'PMoib N*» 
tnbutes to the Scriptures fjlii **£ <e ttAiwfc confolation or com -C^' 
fort. The Prophet calls them the welts of falvation,\h. 1 2.). 
wfahtbtftj of cQnfcUtion,lh.66.u. Thy Word is tome 



He rcftortth my foul&c. 


as the honey and the honey comb. To that purpofe David in PfaL 
1 1 9. You know that when Jonathan tailed of the honey comb, 
his eyes mere enlightened, it did refrefh his fainting fpirits. 
Why / the Word of the Lord is of the fame fweetly refrefhing 
virtue to the ioul j it can deliver out that meflagefrom God, 
and that ftrength, and that peace, which (hall make us alive,aad 
fet us on our feet again. When the Lord doth open hinafelf in 
any promife, whether of mercy, or grace, or ftrength , I aflure 
you that the lame will now leap, and the chains now fall off,and 
darknefs flic away, and as it were, an other foul, a new kind of 
fpirit comes in to us • we can now walk and converfe, and live 
and ferve the Lord with a more free fpirit, a more raifed and en- 
larged fpirit-, whereas before we did hang the wing and went 
©n droopingly and heavity. 

2. By his Spirit : Who is therefore ftiled the fimforter, 
becaufe he doth reftore joy and chearfulnefs • and our comforts 
are called his comforts-, viz. the comforts of the Holy Ghoft. 
The Spirit of God doth reftore a foul many wayes. 1 . Like* 
rando • by removing the oppreflures, the griefs, and maladies , 
the powers and guilt of fin. 2. Inhibendo h fo he reftrains Sa- 
tan. 3 . InflilUndo ; by adding more grace and ftrength, and 
repairing of our weakness ^ (hewing his power in ourweaknefs: 

4. Infiruendo ; by teaching us the good of afflictions , and 
what fpiritual ufe to make of conflicts, trials , and defertions. 

5. Benedicendo; by making the ordinances Virtual , and Ex- 
tenfive in their effeds, that they (hall be the very Cordials of 
our fouls ; he creates the lips of them to fpeak peace. 

6. SigilUndo • by difcovery and reflexive reprefentation,work- 
ing in us a proper evidence of the reality of our gracious condi- 
tion •, as alfo of that happy relation 'twixt us and God recon- 
ciled unto us in Chrift. All which are Reftoratives. 

3 . By Faith : This is the great reftorer of Ilk to any op* 
prefled Chriftian. For whether defertions be the oppreffure 
which make us languifli, or affli&ions, or temptations, or cor- 
rections, or confeience, if ever you will find refre(hing and rai- 
ling it muft be by believing ^ / had fainted unlefs I hid believ* 
ed. Nothing takes off burdens but Faith: nothing handles 
Cordials but Faith. When we are able confidently to reft on 
Cods goodnefs, and free Grace, and faithful Truth, or on the 


By his Spirit 
Job. 1 6. i$» 





By Faith. 

PfaU 7 . 

Ver.3. He reft orttb my foul, Sec. up 

precious blood ofChrift, &c. Now the burden is off and reft 
is found. Now our foals are as it were created anew,tilled with 
life and fpirirs, and therefore it is that Joy and Peace arefo fre- 
quently conjoyned with Faith in Scripture, becaufe, Believing 
is the mother of Peace, and Joy is the daughter of Faith. You 
have no fhouldcrs but your own to bear, and no Mediator 
but your felves to make peace, and no help but your own bro- 
ken and conflicted fpirits, till you be enabled by Faith to be- 
lieve. And then you can find merit enough , fatisfa&ion e- 
nougb , mercy enough , ftrength enough , God good e- 
nough, faithful enough, &c, and now all is made up in the 

Queft. 2. why doth the Lord reft ere life, at it were, and com- Why doth cfcc 
fort unto the fouls of his people ? Lord »ftore 

Sol. i. Neceffity on their part-. Senfe of fin is an heavy wmforttohis 
thing, and the Chriftan warfare is a (harp rhing • Even Chnft xhdr is neccf- 
himfelf after his temptations had the Angels coming and mini-ii:y n theft 
firing unto him ■, thefpirit rv.uldfail, &c. part. 

2. Goodnefs of companion on gods part : Who, as he will not G°odnefs o f 
\\\TC\MMay ttpen man wore then is riglt , or meet, fob 34.23. G^Mrt ° n 
So he will not fuffer us by others to be tempted above what tve 

are able, 1 Cor.10.13. He doth pity the work of his own 

3. Fidelity and truth in Gcd : It is his word of Invitation, c , •. tm , 

it ) j n tin ' rlv-ei:yani 

Come ye that are heavy laden ; and, Ho I every ore that thirfts. Truth in G:i. 

And it is his word of Obligation that he will refrefh and 

eafe the one, and quench and fatisfic the thirft of the 0- 


4. His a feci io>:f are much towards ctpreffed, and di /Ire fed ^ n j s aflf c aions 
ana lan^mjhing fouls. Therenre two hearts that Gods eye isircmuciuo- 
much on ; The Humble hi art : God refpefts the heart which winh opprcflcd 
refne&snot it felf. The Humbled heart : Gods affeSions louls ' 

are much towards it. For thus faith the hifrh and lofty 
one thai inhabitcth eternity^ rvhvfe Name is Holy, I dwell in the 
hioh and holy place, With him alfo that is of an humble and con- 
trite fpirit, to nvive the fpirit ef the humble, and to revive the 
heart of the contrite oner, Ifa 57.15. So when Ephraim was 
broken in heart • // Ephraim my dear f on, faith the Lord } I 
renumber him fill, 

5, i/c-w. 

120 He reftoreth my foul, &c. Vcr. 

How ufcUfs 5. How ufelefs are their fouls without this reviving} Un- 

arc tbeir fouls fi r ^ an d ptrhaps afraid for any duty • the pulfe hardly beats ac 
without this all i n f a i n ting fits. J am afraid to lookup, faid David, lam 
Rcvmn * afflitted and ready to die y faid Heman, Pial 88.15. Like 4 Crane 
or a Swalltw, fo did I chatter ; I did mourn as a Dove : mine 
ejes fail with looking upward 1 O Lord y Iamopprefled, under' 
takefsr me ♦, So Hezekjab in Ifa.38.14. 
^ e }\ Doth the Lord himfclfreftore (.u) revive, eafe, refrefli, 
formed ithat 1 the and rai ** e U P> and comfort the fouls of his fervants ? then we 
condition of ma Y be informed, That the condition cfholinefs doth far exceed 
holincfs doths the courfe of wic^dnefs : Every good man is a Barnabas % oifon 
far exceed the c { confclati<n. Though evil men do boaft, and vaunt, and tri- 
courfe of wick- um p n a wn i[ C) y et t hey are of all men the rroft mifcrable , they 
are the only fons of fear, and heirs of wrath. You kaow not 
fcowfoonopprefluresmay overtake you ; not only extremity 
of outwardaffliftions,but likewifc the depths of iaward perplex- 
ities. Troubles of foul, and wounds of confcience,there are no 
heart-breakings, no languifhings like to thefe for fenfiblenefe , 
for bicternefs, for agony. Soul burdens are the moft grievous 
burdens, and fuch as will quickly make the fpirits to crack, and 
your hearts to roar. And here is now a greater depth of the 
mifery, that you can neither bear your burdens,nor deliver your 
felves ; there are no reliefs , no refrefhings for you ^ your 
worldly vanities cannot fuccour or repair your tormented 
'fouls. Your confcicnces cannot at all excufe, but condemn 
you. The Word fpeaks nothing but Wrath and Judgment a • 
gainft you, and Faith you have none, to draw any comfort or 
fupport from God or Chrift. But with godly and holy people 
itisotherwife, either they are chearfully ferving God, being 
freed from oppreffures and droopings • or if at any time their 
fouls do faint, the Lord himfelf is ready to raife up and chear 
The advanta- their fainting fouls. I befeech you give me leave a little to en- 
ges of being large this point, that you may the better underftand the privi- 
truiy Holy, ledges and advantages of being truly holy, and the fervants of 

God hath meft *• VVhatfoever the depreilions and grievances are which 
peculiar and make the fouls of good perionsto languid, yet the Lord hath 
proper Rcfto- mfl peculiar^ and proper % ard refptUive reftoradves fcr their 

ratives for r (U i f he hath the right plaiftcr for even' fore. Are they trou- 
thcirlculs. f, * ° r J J ^j s j 

Ver.5. He reftorcthmy feul.&c 121 

bled in their confeiences? He can create the fruit of the lips % 
even peace unto them. Are they troubled about the (ins which 
they have committed ? he can give fpecial commiffion to his 
Prophets to comfort them , and to fay , That their iniquity us 
pardonrd.lCa.^o. Are they troubled with the powers of (in- 
fill corruptions ? he can refrefh their fouls by fubduing pftht ir 
inicjtiitiesyMic.j. Are they troubled with grievous temptati- 
ons? he can again revive their fouls, by making hus Grace to be 
Jujficient for them, and by /hewing hus power in their weak»efs , 
2 Cor. 12. 9 Are they broken with long and great afflictions ? 
why, yet he who hath /hewed them great and [ere troubles, fiuU 
quicken them again, and bring them up again from the depths 
of the earth Pfal,7i.20. Arethcy caft down by reafon of Gods 
withdrawmentsand difpleafures ? why, though he hath for- 
tv faken them for a little momen.t yet he will gather them with 
c< great mercies. Though in a little wrath he hides his face from 
" you,for a moment,yet with everlafting kindnefle will he have 
" mercy upon you,//* 54.7,8. 

2. As they fliall have peculiar and proper revivings, fo they They fliai bare 
fhall have feafonable and expedient refrefiings : When David finable and 
was ready to faint, then his faith was excited to fee the giodnefs [ x ^? icm rc ~ 
of the Lord, Pfal.27.13. When Peter was fi*ki*g , then did c ir ' s " 
Chrift put forth his hand and fave him. When Taul was al- 

moft defpairingjthen was he delivered from a great death^z Cor. 
1.8,10. When Davids foot was ready to Aide, then did the 
'.hand of God hold him up. When Jehefiaphat knew not what 
to do, then the Lord undertook his fafety. / have heard thte in 
a time accepted , and in the day of falvation have I fuccoured 
thee, 2 Cor 6.2 

3. And they (hall have powrful and effectual cordials , fuch They (hai have 
as fhall exceed, and be able to remove their fainting^ and raife powerful and 
up their fpirits. When the King gives his pardon and difcharge, c ^ : ^ ual Cor- 
who is he that dares to gain* fay his corrfmand and pleafure? UJ 

We may fay of Gods comfortable reftering, what Ifaac faid of 
Jacobs blefling, / have bleffedhim, and he fljtll be biffed. So 
ff the Lord will comfortably reftore the foul, it fhall be comfor- 
tably rellored. Hence thofe irrefittible expreflions, Ffal 4:8. 
The Lord will command his loving kjndniffe ; f.i.) as it were 
giv c it a fpecial charge 10 fhew it felf to the fouls of his fcrvan:s, 


He reftoretbmj fwl>8cc. Vcr.3.. 

J/a. 57.19 I create the fruit of the lips, pace, -peace to him that 
is afar off. Creation it is an Omnipotent ad, utterly uncon- 
trollable : There may be fometimes a depth of troubles on the 
foul, wave may be upon wave, and thick da rkneffe over our 
Horizon- our fouls may be bowed down and greatly affli&ed : 
we may fay with David, that we are in ag -eat fir ait , and with 
fehofijjp'vat, We know not Vvhat to do, and we have no might - 
our fpirits may be even ground to pouder and overwhelmed 
within us ; yet even then can and will the Lord reftore the fouls 
of his fervants. The Lord raifeth them that are boVoed down 
Pfal.i 16.8. and raifeth the poor out of the du ft, Pfal.i 13.-7. an( * 
fob from oft the dung-bill, and David often from the gates of 
death :,yea,in the multitude of 'his thoughts did gods comforts de- 
light hit foul : t\nd though I wall^in themidft of trouble tho% 
wilt revive me, Pfal.i 38. 7 And when my fpirit was overwhelm- 
edftithin rr,e,thenthou I&etoeft my pa:h t Vfoli42.2. He heard 
our vcice out of the low dungeon, and our breathing, Lam. 3. 
jfcndih«y are 4, And they art infallible and certain : The Lord will not 
infallible and ca ft ff for ever, but though he caufe grief yet will he have com- 
ccrtain. p a ffion according to the multitude of his mercies, Lam. 3.31,32. 

1 will furely have mercy on him :,Jer. 31. 20. and I will reftore 
comforts unto him, Jfa.57. 18. 
Vfe2 Then \iyou,any cf you would have y cur fouls reftored, Goun- 

Lf cSV' the Lord ' Come brethren > \ veril > 7 believe thac ther e is 
r *ftoKd"to°un- f carce an Y one of youfwho are the people ofGod)but you have 
tpjfacXord. fome oppreffures or other upon your fpirits, One of you per- 
haps has a foul even tired out with fpecial temptations ; ano- 
ther hath a foul wearied out with violent corruptions . and a 
third ready to faint under afflictions, and a fourth, that his af- 
fections are not fo exactly tempered, and fully inflamed as for- 
merly. And a fifth, that he is not fo in duties, and the Lord 
looks not fo on him in his Ordinances as he was wont. New 
I befeech you, hearken unto me. Go unto the Lord every one 
of you with your opprefTed fpirits : He is the reftorer of fouls. 
To whom /hall we g(} faid Peter to Chrift, thou haft the wcrds of 
eternal life. ConMerwith me a few particulars. 

onV ar P f * et' l ' S ° ul 6 P? r€ JT l0nS are ver ) P ai "f* 1 '' The Soul is the feat of 

pSnfu* Wy ^weeteft comfort or deepeft fadneffe. A little thing in the eye 

Vcr.?. Hcreftcretbmyfottl^&c. 125 

will trouble, and a fmall thingon the brain is weighty , and 
any burden on the foul is very heavy. Read but the luitory of 
Job and cf David in fome particulars,yand our own experience, 
and you will confefle this to be true.Now what wife man would 
dwell with everlaiting burnings ? Who would bear or he under 
fucli burdens, as will make a foul to crack, that might be 
eafed and refrefhed ? 

2. Soul [mkjr.gs are very prejudicial : I need not fay HO- Sgul finkfagi 
thing how it makes a perfon break quite up in particular rela- arc vtty prtjt- 
tions, unfitting him for all converfe, but which is yet worlc, fedkitl. 
damnifies him in the general calling, working off the heart 

from all Ordinances, all Communion ; and giving occafion for 
Satan to faften extreme and fore fuggeitions. Ah Chriftian ! 
Thou confidereft not how much thou wrongeft thy Graces, thy 
duties, thy God, thy happinefTe, thy peace, by giving way, 
or living in a difconfolatc , heartlefTe, languifhirg condi- 

3. The Lord onlj hath potter over the Soul, and the burdens The Lord only 
of it : We can mar, and we can trouble our own fouls and caft hath power 0- 
them down, but it is no power and art but that of a God which vcr chc f j" ul » 
can raifeup, revive and fettle the foul again. The air may bfSensofii!! 1 " 
good to refrefh fome bodies, and merry company to hearten 

a melancholick body -, for finking bodies, phyl.ck, diet, recrea- 
tion, &c. may be good reftoratives^ but for fouls that are 
finking, or funk, no helps can reftore them but fuch as are like 
themfelves. Spiritual fouls, fpiritual maladies, are to be raifed 
up with fpiritual reftoratives only. Now God, he is the father 
of Spirits, he gives unto us our fpirits, and he it is who can re- 
fine our fpirits, and he it is who mull refrefh and repair our fpi- 
rits, and revive them. As he is the God of all Grace, i<> he is 
the father of all comfort ; The father of our fpirits^nd the fa- 
ther of our comfort. 

4 H :<yr*rg c d: Look over all the Covenant how he ex- Hc »*ou 
prcfleth himfelf to be yours. Yours ,whae ? fcf renewing grace- 
only, nay. but for reviving grace alfo. Aflfuredly , thai your 
fouls are fo fainting and langui[hed,you your felvcs are the pri 

Objefi, We the caufes of it, will fome fay , Not fo ' 
do diflike our fears, our doubts, our finkings, we complain 

R z -m, 

124 & e reftoretb my foul, &c. Vcr. 3 * 

them, we pray to the Lord, but no reftorative can we find in* 
our fouls. 

Sd Nay,nay ,butyou your felvcs are thecaufes wtiy your faint- 

ing,and tired ,and oppreffed,and ianguifhing fpfrits arc not refto- 

red and made up. If the patient will fend for the Phyfician and 

open the weaknefle of his body unto him, and defire coun- 

fel, and when all is done he will nor follow the medicinal pre- 

fcriptions, but will feed on what he likes; and drink what \\k 

pleafeth , and go abroad when he iifteth ; doth not he caufe 

weaknefle upon him felf? Is it not he himfelf wbo keeps him - 

.. felf low? Why brethren , though we do complain and feek 

hinder the'rai- unt0 c ^ e ^ or d t0 reftore us, yet if two things be pra&ifed by 

SngofourUn-us, it cannot be that erer our Ianguifhing fouls fhould be 

guiihing fouls, raifed. 

If wc rcjfdche la jf t h xt we rejeftjr oppofe the things Vchich will re ft ore a 
S^f^n but thus is it with us, we will not take our Cordials, wc 
or * a ou » put them afide - } Ono! the blood ©f Chrift belongs not unto 
us, the loving kindnefle of God is not for us , the promifes rc« 
fpe&notus. Can thy foul ever be reftared whiles thou thus 
refufeft: the reftoratives f Tell me, what is it doth oppreffe 
and trouble thee ? and whatis that which will raife and revive 
thee ? The guilt of(in, that is it which doth oppreffe thee •, can 
any thing in this cafe be thy reftorative , but the free mercy of 
God in the blood of Chrift f this Qod doth reprefent unto 
thee, this doth he offer unto thee, but this cannot he fatten up- 
on thee. Thou prayes for help, he is prefent to help, but thou 
refufeft the help. Talke and delude thy felf as much as thou 
pleafeft, that thou feed more in thy felf then another imagins ^ 
it is unqueftionable with me that thou doft fo. But no caufe 
canft thou fee to refufe Gods grace offered unto thee- and offe- 
red unto thee to reftore thy foul. 
}f we keep up 2. If that we keep up our finking and clepr effing principles^ 
©u-r finking and Vt g t Erroneous conceits and miftakes abourthe Vitals of grace, 
dcpitffing invented evidences of Salvation, and not fuch as the Word au- 
-pnncipcs. thorizeth ^ crediting of Satans fuggeftions and our own defi- 
nitives, when we are incompetent to give fentence. Sometimes 
overturning all upon a meer. infirmity, yea,oft-times queftioning 
our graces becaufe they are fo conftant in conflict with our fin- 
fui natures* If we find the leaft Vanity , we ufually fall upon 

Ver-3. Hcrcftorethmjfoul&c. 125 

the verity of our eftates. If we be not as high as others, or 
alwaycslikeourfelvesor fomeunufual temptation befall us, or 
affliction, pre fently we are pining and finking. The rirft thing 
that we fall upon is the truth- of our conditions, and we will 
not eallly hearken to any evidences but fuchas may make a - 
gainft us. This is the ordinary method amongft Cafe-Chnfti- 
ans (I mean thofe that put Cafes of Confciences) they invent 
and infill on any thing which may imaginably keep down their 
fouls, and they eagerly, and with much fubtilty difpuce againft 
whatfoever may reftore and repair their fouls . To what pur- 
pofe^ Man, doeftthou pray to be restored? when prefently 
thou (trengthens and fides with thofe bafe principles of thy 
heart which do keep thy foul from being reftored : Doeft thou 
thinkthat a perfon rightly prayes againft drunkennefs Or unciean- 
nelTe who prefently nouriftieth in himfelf thofe fpecial prin- 
ciples and motions which do uphold thofe finnes, fo &c. 

Ob. But what would you have us to do ? What ftculd 

Sol. Not to omit Prayer, not to omit any other Tpiritual f uch dc 
means of reftoration, whether Word or Sacrament ,or Confer- Omic not du- 
ence, but above all to improve jotfr faith if ever you would get cirsandordi- 
your fouls to be reftored. You will' go with drooping hearts nances, 
to your graves, unlefle you can skill the life and ufe of Faith El P ccia "y irn * 
better. Though the Word be apt to reftore the foul, though ^^ y °' 
the Sacrament bCapt to reftore the foul, yea-' though god him- 
felf be able to reftore the foul • yet neither the VFord, nor the 
Sacrament, nor God do reftore the foul without faith. VVouldft 
thou then have thy languiftiing foul reftored, ftrive earneftly to 
believe, fet before thine eyes the loving kindnefle of the Lord, 
look into the wells of falvation, difplaj the prom'fes of God, turn fcudy chc Pi\> 
not away thine eyes from them, but ferioufly read and perufe mi;cJ « 
them. Thou {halt fee in them all the proper grace, mercy, 
ftrength, comfort, refrefhing chat thydiftrefled andoppreiTcd 
foul can dedre : then confider this is every Jot of it, the word 0^ 
God, a faithful God who keeps Covenant for ever, and per- 
forms his truth to a thoufand generations : I will live and d.e 
upon his good and faithful word, L rd 1 believe, help my unbe- 
lief. Thou fayeft thus and thus; and I dotruftonthee to be 
thus for my foul, to do thus for my foul-, thou wilt pardon my 
Bfts, thou \m\t fubduc them, thou wik brufe Satan forme, 


126 He reftoreth my foul&c. Vcr,3. 

thou wilt do me good by all my afflictions, thou wilt (hew me 
thy falvation, I will ftill pray unto thee, (till wait upon chee, at 
length I know that my weaknefle (hall recover ftrength, and my 
confli&s fhall find vi&ory, and my faithful God will anfwer, 
will help, will quicken, will comfort me on every fide. 


— *— — ___, 

P S A L. 2$. tfi i 



■lie leadeth me in the Paths of righteeufftefs for 
his Names fake. 

THis is the fecond fpecial mercy which God confers on Da* 
vids foul, wherein you have, 

1. The Agent and h\sAtt [He leadeth"] 

2. The Per fen or Patient Vvko is led \_me~\ 

3. The eeurfe or way es wherein he is Jed [in the paths of 


f The word here ufed, is Metaphorical, fometimes refpe&ing 
the£/*W, who cannot walk without a guide, fometimes //«/<? 
or weak^children who cannot go without a leader, and here the 
weak and aptly wandring Jheep which ftand in need of the ihep- 
herd to go in and out before them. 

Though fomethir.g might be obferved from the conjunction 
of thefe two mercies;,-, that God is a Leader as well as a Reftcrer 
of the foul ; fyg removes burdens that we might folfow duties ; 
cures and ccmfortsa foul, that the foul might now walk the 
better. Yet I will not infifton it, Onely two Propositions I 
(hall more fully open, viz. 

.1. That even c inverted and reftored perfons^veed a God to 
lead them. 

2. That God leadeth his people in righteous paths ^ crlnthe 
wayes of righteotsfnejfe. 

Ver.3. He leadcth me fo the Pdths y &c. 127 

I begin with chc firfl , 

That tven converted per forts need a Gcd to lead them. [[He Doclr.j. 
leadeth we ] faith David , a choice fheep and of good Even convened 
growth.] and rcftorcd 

3 O Lord, faith the Prophet Jeremiah 10.23. I k^^ that t be? tr( ™ sntzd 
yeay of man is not m himfelf \ It is not in man thxt walktth to\ ^ 
direct his fteps. And therefore David prayes 7>(al. 143. 10. 
Teach me to do thy will, for thou art my God, thy fpirit is good, 
lead me into the land of upright nejfe ; he compares himfelf to 
a weak fcholar who needs teaching, and to a weak man who 
needs leading. And the Lord promifeth to make his people to 
tyoft his traces and to walk, in his jiatutes } Ezek 3 1 .and Ez. 3 6. 
of which promife there had been no need, had not the people 
of Cod need of his guidance' and afliitance, but for the better 
understanding of this afTertion, I will diftover thefe particu- 
lars : 

1 . The matter or nature of Gods leading his people. 

2. The manner how he leads his people. 

3. The reafons why his people need his leading. 

4. Then the ufeful application. 

£neflA. What the leading of God is which is here meant : ^ st :bfi 
Sol. To refolve that, prcmife thefe particulars ; leading of God 

1. There is a double leading ; is. 

One is gexeral in a^ay rf common providence, wherein all A double kad- 
the faculties and operations of the creatures are affifted,cxci-^ n , . 
ted, and directed by God for the fervice of his glory. This is £ cooaaioiT** 
that general virtue or influence from God, by which all things providence, 
are moved and guided. 

Another is J fecial and proper to the (fiate and acls^ and ways Special and 
cf Grace and Salvation, whereto a more lingular aid and in- P'' c P cri0 the 
fluence is neceflary. This is it whereof the Pfalmift here^ 1 . ,a f/ ,aiid 

r . , J wayes of Grace. 


2. This leading is again twofold, either This leiding 
Rcprtfcntative , which confifts in the declaration of thei r . 

wayes we are to take and walk in, as alio of thefalfe and by- ReptcfcawtK. 
wayes of which we are to take heed. In this refpeft Gcd 
guides his people by his word written, which is therefore called 
1 Lamp unto our feet, 4nd a light unto our paths, Plal.119. icy 
and to it is alfo afcribed a duelling virtue and ordering v. r 3 j. 

;i 1 


He kadeth me in the Paths of, &c. Vcr ; 3 7 


This efficaci- 
ous leading is 
by way of 



and a ceunjelling virtue ^.24. and an upholding virtue, v. 116. 
every one of which is a part of leading : and fo likewife it is 
called a Rule which leads and guides an Artificer in his working 
for depth and breadth, and heighth, and compalTe -, Co the word 
direfts and chaulks out our way in all matters requifite to falva- 
tion, what we are to believe and what we are to do. It is fuch 
a guide to us now in our fpiritual motions as the pillar of pre 
&nd;the cloud was heretofore in their natural motions,meafunng 
out their going and relting-at all times. 

Effective which conhft sin infufion and communication of fuch 
ads and qualities whereby the fouls of his people move on in 
the paths of life. God doth not onely lead his people as a 
Counfellor leads his Client, direUive ^ but as the head leads the 
members effective , by communicating fpirits and motion. This 
efficacions guidance or leading confifts of thefe particu- 

1. Of a cleerer illqwinatiw. They have eyes given them 
to fee their Leader, and ears given them to know their Leader 
and his voice , this is the way wa\ h it Ef. 30. 21. SheVo me 
thy wajes O Lord, teaeh me thy paths,$hli$.4. 'Tis true that 
the leading by the Word, is common to good and bad, but the 
one hath not thofe eyes to read, thofe ears to hear, that undcr- 
ftanding to perceive as the other hath : pfh an} blond hath not 
revealed this unto thee, but my father, forth chrift to Peterjfobu 
datum eft noffe. The natural man per -ceiveth not the things of 
God, faith the Apoftle, 1 Cor. 2. 14. but Qod hath revealed 
them unto us v 10. So that this is one part of efficacious lead- 
ing when the Lord by his Spirit doth teach us the paths of 
righteoufneffe, when he makes us to know the path of iife,what 
is that good and acceptable will of his, which he would have 
us to believe and clo. 

2. Of sl peculiar inclination of the will or heart to obey 
and follow the direction of God, which fome do call exciting 
Grace, becaufe the Lord either by his word or by the motions 
of his Spirit, or both, doth ftir up the heart, enclining it to 
hearken and to obey, to embrace his directions, fub jeft in g their 
will to his will • Lead me in thy truth and teach me, PfaJ.25. 5'. 
Chrift' calls this a drawing of the Father Joh 6. and David the 
[eating of the law within hii heart, Pfal.40.8. and fome call it % 

Ver.j . He kadcth me in the Paths,&c. 1 2 9 

perfuaficn, which is fuch an effectual motion as winnes and 
gains the heart to follow ortoobey, prevalet ad confenfum. 
True, it is not fuch a motion as is violent and compells our will 
(this were not to lead it, but to annihilate and destroy it) yet 
it is fuch a motion as is prevalent, and as S.AuJlin (peaks, of 
unwilling, makes us willing. 

3. Of a [fecial cooperation, wherein Divine affiftance con- Adinj. 
curs with the will renewed and excited, enabling it both to will 
and to do thofe things which are pleafing unto God, for it is 
God that workjeth in m both to will and to do. Though in our 
conversion we are Gods workmanfhip, yet being converted we 
are now Co-workers with God. Vtvelimus fine nobis opera- 
tor -, cum autem volumm & fie volumnt ut faciamus , nobifcum 
operator ; t amen fine illo operant e ut velimns,vel cooper ante cum 
volumus , ad bona pietatis opera nihil valemus , S. Augh-ft. lib. 
de gratia, & lib. arbitrio c.17. Though there be in us a prin- 
ciple encliningunto good, yet by reafon of natural corruption 
redding in us,r?f cannot do that good which we would, and there- 
fore as we need operating or preventingGrace to make us good, 
fo we need fubfequent and cooperating Grace to enable us to do 
good • his Spirit muft caufe us to walk in his Statutes and do 

4 \j&\y,oi a fin gular confirmation, which fome call fuftain- Ccminuine. 
ing Grace, or upholding Grace, which is fuch an effectual in- 
fluence from God, whereby the hearts of his people are led on 
and elkblifhed and preferved in their courfe of holy walking -, 
therefore you read in Scripture, that God preferveth the feet of 
his Saints, and that he ejiablifheth the path of tht juft. 

,Queft.2. This for the nature of this guidance, now for the The manner of 
manner of it : QualU duttus, what a kind of leading that is this guidance, 
of God to his people? 

Sol. This may be briefly fatisfied, 

1. His leading or guidance, is duclus fublimis , It is not I: is ductus yb* 
earthly, vain, impure, carnal ; far be it to fatten any grace'effe-'i'"^. 
motions and workings on God. He is holy, and leads us oncly 

by an holy word, and by an holy Spirit, and to holy works, and 
to holy ends • he is no Fountain, no Patron of fuch as arc im- 
pure and carnal. f- u ^ u 

2, His leading is duclm canoiicus ovrezuLirv. God never ris. 

S leads 

j-o Heleadethweivtbe Paths, 8zc. Ver.3. 

leads his to a^s which are not fubordinate to his own glory 
and coordinate with his own word:, if they be fuch attempts 
Which the word condsmnes , that tbey exceed the compafleof 
Irrezular ex or " cur g-- r * er ^ or particular calling, we move not now by an 
f^i^tcr^heavfnlyftar^burbyadifternperedfancy- either by a corrupt 
i Perjojue rnind ? or by vile arYe&ions,or by Satans delufions. According to 
this rule as many as walk^^ peace be on them , Gal. 6. Our 
walking muft be by rule, and therefore our guiding is alwayes 
VuRus fort*. 3. His leading is ductus ferps, it is fuch as bowes and bends 
the will and gives fufficient grace. It is not fuafive onely , as 
if a Nurfes tongue were enough to ftrengchen a little weak 
child to go ; but it is per fua fie ^theftrcngth of a God goes with 
the voice of a God ; a leading by arguments, by proportions 
of rewards and punifliaients : even Pelagius himfelf will ac- 
knowledge, velle opcratur Dens fuadendo^ & premia pollicendo % 
as is related in S Hierom^nd alfo by S. Auftin in his book Be 
Gratia Chrijli^ cap. io. No ! the Lord doth lead his people 
alfo by influence and motu forti ; as he converts them voce alt a 
fo he leads them motu efficiently powerfully prevailing upon 
their wills againft § all the refiftances of corrupt nature, and all 
difputes of Satan,and all temptations from the world to hearken, 
and obey and follow. 
T>u8hs ItvisQ 4. His leading is dutlus levis & blandfts : He gently leadeth 
bUndus. tfojTg t ij At are xvithyouni, lf.40. 1 1 . He leads not like the Tope 

Wiies ton tfi with fire and fword, and prifons,as if men were to be burnt,and 
sogenda. wounded,& knockt into a faith, thus the Butcher leadcth the Ox 

to the (laughter.But he leads as a mother doth her tender child, 
now with one hand^then with both, bearing up the body fo 
that the going can fcarcely be diftinguifhed from the carrying, 
fo the Lord bids his people follow him and obey him, and gives 
alfo what he commands, a power to follow and to obey, layes 
an yoke on them, and as it were puts under a (boulder to bear ^ 
gives them his hand as well as his command, and never urgeth 
more obedience then he is willing to afford afiiftance to ad it. 
Efficacy goes with the authority, and help with the precept. 
J abet fed juvat, fed adjuvat .Doth he require much he will help 
rauch ; doth he command never fo much, he never commands 
saorc then duty, nor then his own fuffirieacy (hall appear ia 

5. His 

Vcr.J. #* leadeth rttin the Paths^&cc. 1 5 1 

5. His leading is duclus fuavii & levis. It is delightful as Vuftus (unit. 
well as gentle : delightful two wayes-, 

Partly becaufe he wcrketh in ha a delight to be led by him . I 
do deltghf to do rhj will faith David Pfal.40 8. and therefore his 
people arc called a Trilling people Pfal.i io- and fuch as ferve tke 
Lord with gladntjfe* Pfal. no. 2. Evil men cry out the burden 
of the Lord-, and Mal.$, What a wearim^e is it ? 

Partly becaufe being led by him, there arifeth lingular tran- 
quillity, joy and comfort. The work^of right eonfxefje Jh.dl be 
peace, And the tffeEl of right ccufnefs, quietnefs and afl'ura/tce for 
ever, I f, 3 2. 1 7. Ye (hall go out with joy , and be led fonh with 
peace, If 5512. The paths wherein God leads us, they are a 
way fet on one fide with trees of delight, and on the other 
fide with rivers of pleafures. 

6. His leading is duclus [aim aris. It is a fafe leading, fo VuZus (iUtti* 
that the Sun /hall not burn us by day , nor the Moon by ntght.iu. 
Though Pharaoh follows behind and a red fea fwells before 

us, yet he fafely led his people from Egypt to Canaan. Though 
there are many calamities, many errors, many temptati- 
ons, many rebellions , accompanying us , yet God will 
lead us vi&orioufly with an high hand from fin, the world 
and Devil, till he brings us to heaven, 7^/73.4. Thou /halt 
guide me with thy counfel , and afterward receive me into 

7. Laftly his leading is ductus fidelis . It is a faithful leading- Dutim fiitlis] 
whats that ? 

Such a leading a* will not mi (lead us. Seducunt mult a, du- 
cunt pauca : Ifljmael mifguided the men of Shechem and killed 
them, ^r. 4 1. 6.7. The pillar of fire and cloud ted the Ifraelites 
the right and beft way. The Star led the wife men din til y to 
Chrift. Becaufe God is eiTentially Truth and Omnifcience, 
therefore he is capable of error no way, neither in Ejfendo f nor 
in Dirigendo, neither in nature, nor counfel, but knowes all the 
wayes to heaven, and guides and directs us onely in them,Prcv. 
4. I'/. / have Id thee in right paths. 

Such a leading as will not fail us : What he fpeaks to fojbxj, 
is true concerning the leading of all his people./ will nez er A 1 
thee nor for fake thee. All of them may fay as Dazi.i, in POL 
48.I4» This Cod is our Gcd for ever and ever, he Will be $ur 

S Z guide 

132 He leadeth me in the Paths ,&c. Vcr. 3 . 

guide unto death. Mofes leads the people to the borders of 
Canaan^ and then he dies : The Dive I leads us on to fin as the 
high Priefts did Judas to betray his Mafter, and then he 
leaves us. 

But the Lord will dill be our Guide , he will ftill (hew us the 

way, keep us to the way, draw us on in the way till we come to 

our journies end. 

Why (hould Queft. 3. But whj fheuld converted per fens need the leading 

converted per. of God ? Other perfons may, but for them, who have received 

fons need the Grace already and ftrength, &c. 

They n have G ° d SoL l anfwer ' There is ? reat need ° f Gods leadin § them b Y 
ireatneed. efficacious Grace indire&ing, exciting, ailifting, co-operat- 

In refpeft of i m i n refpedt of the Imbecillity that is in their Graces. Grace 

• hC h^ b G lUty ( €0nfid ered in this life) though it be a fweet plant , yet it is but 
m eir ccs a plant very tender •, and though it be a pleafant child, yet but 
a child very weak. Though God doth put forth or (hew his 
arm in the implanting of it, yet being tranfplanted and left to 
it felf, it is no fufficient foundation, no complete Guide or Lea- 
der. You know the infufficiency of created Grace in Adam , 
wanting a fpecial affiftance. And we read of the beft Saints 
that they have been grievoufly and quickly foiled, when left to 
themfelves, they have been inftantly milled by fears and inor- 
' dinateaffedions,as you read in Abraham^ *David, Hezekiah. 
Peter. A very weak Chriftian gets ground when God leads 
him,andaveryftrongChriftianloofeth his way if God leaves 
In refpeft of 2. In refpeft of the difficulties "which are in the way 1 Though 
the Difficulties righteous paths be heavenly and holy , yet many times are 

the 1C a^ 6 ln C ^ e y made ft° rm y and un eafie. The Ifraelites journey 
was to Canaan, but they muft pafTe threugh a redfea, and a ty*7- 
demejfe.VM 9 Thc Chriftians journey is to heaven, but there is a 
Red Sea of many afflictions and perfections with which he 
muft be Baptifed, and there are many Defarts of moft difcou- 
raging temptations ; fometimes it may go hard with the body, 
and with the eftate, and for the world, a mans enemies ftialibe 
thofeof his own houfhold,and Satan hath many a fiery dart , 
not only in violent fuggeftions, but likewife in erroneous fedu- 
&ion$j flight of men , and cmni*gcraftinefs s lying In wait to 


Ver.3« Hth&dtthme in the Paths^Scc. i 3 3 

Receive, Eph.4.14. To patfe through all which couragioudy 
and evenly, we have lingular need of God himfelf to be our 
Guide or Leader, to hearten us in the way,to keep us in the way 
that v/e fall neither to the left hand, nor to the right • that we 
faint not, nor be turned out of the way , that we fall not from 

3 . In refpeel: of that erroneous aptne(fe in us % even the beft of j n re fp e a f 
us • error is manifold, and truth fimplc ; many wayes to mifle chat Erroneous 
the mark, one only to hit it, faid Arijlotle in his Ethicks. We aptncis in us. 
are very apt to err : Ia our Judgments, and therefore the A- 

poftle compares us to the chaff, which every wind feverally and 
eafily tofleth, £7^.4.14. with Pfal.i.q. and to little children 9 
who are led every way with every toy. Do but obferve in this 
City the perpetual experience of this, for there is not any error 
revived and drefled up in a little ne# fafhioning , but prefently 
many are reeling and ftaggering- they are apt (like to children) 
to change an old piece of gold, for a new fine counter, fo thefe, 
to let go old Truths for refined errors. In our Pratltfes : T>a- 
vid profefleth as much in Pfal. 1 1 9 1 76. / have gone aft ray like 
a loftfheep. Our foot-fteps are ftill ready .to (1 de,generally the 
examples of men prevail more with us, and their opinions more 
then the Rule of Gods Word : Vivimus exemplis non lefibu*. 
Jn our Affetttons, and therefore for perfons fakes we fuddenly 
fwallow down many errors. 

4. Chrijlians muft make progreffe in Grace , as well as find an Chriftinns 
entranceof Grace ; their path muft be as the jbimng of the Sun ^muft make pro- 
more and more to the perfett day. They are to work out their l rcls ' il Gttcfc 
Salvation, and to add to their Faith Virtue, &c. and to abound 

more and more. But this cannot be without Gods leading of 
them ; you may expect that a child (hould increafe without a- 
ny nurfing , as well as that a Chriitian (hould abound in Grace 
without Gods leading As there is no birth, fo no growth with- 
out his influence. 

5. Laftly, lare/p:-cl of that b *chvt>ardne([e that U in cur Spi-la refpefi of 
tits : The Jit fi u weak, faith Chnft. The journey to Heaven is^e BicknruJ 
up the Hill, wefailagainft Wind and Tide. The tfrttlttes in^Sphiw. 
their paflages were ever and anon weary and fitting down, and 
thinking of returning into Egypt. David himfelf thinks, / 

fia/l me daj pe>ifj bj the hand of San!. Ah 1 we find ill 


134 He leadeth me in the Paths^Stc. Vcr.3. 

hearts of our own after all knowledg, effayes, experiences, yet 
willing to ftand dill, all that we can do fometimes can do no- 
thing with them ; we cannot bring them on in that cheerful- 
nefleof fervice.to God. They are apt toclofe with tempta- 
tions , and with carnal excufes , and with impediments or dis- 
couragements, and therefore we need the Lord to guide 
us, to quicken and excite us, to worke in us, and with us, 
and for us, 
Vfe The firft life, (hall be to inform us of the great love of God to* 

To inform u$ wards his pecple, whom he is pleafed not to leave, but to guide 
01 the great an d Ifa^ to make an& k^ep> to raife up and lead. This is a mer- 
w-rds his 04 - t0 " ey t0 be a( * m * re( * of m i anc * t0 be c cIet>rate ^ wttfe all affedio- 
ple^n leading" n3te P ra ^ es ? *f c ^ e Lord (hould leave us to our felves , to our 
of ihcm. own ftrength, tow quickly would cur graces flop ? we can do no 

good without him • our fhip, though well built , would be in a 
calm without the gale of his fpirit j our fire would hardly burn, 
nor our candle fhine : It would be with us as with the wheels 
in a Watch, if you take ofthefpringthey all lieftill and move 
not •, if the Lord doth not exert his adual influence, we can ad 
nothing in any grace, at leaft Vidorioufly we cannot. Hew 
quickly JhouldVoe mif carry} Like children, (tumble at every 
ftone, or like the blinde , fall into every ;ditch. Temptations 
and corruptions though for a while they might meet with a lie— 
$le faint refiftance, yet would they quickly conquer us ^ we are 
butaglafTefafeonlyinbis hand-, and a fhip, broken without 
his Pilot-fhip. How foul was the fall of David , the pride of 
Hezekiah, the denial of Peter •, The beft men will appear to be 
men if God be not their guide. A Ship without a Pilot, an 
Army without a General, a Sheep without a Shepherd, a Child 
without a Nurfe, a Chriftian without a God leading and guid- 
ing, are all of them in a dangerous condition. Why? then 
it muft be a merciful Love which God (hews to us to leade us, 
fo that Graces are kept, and Graces ftand, and Graces work, 
and we are hitherto preferved from many a (in. 
We have no 2. It may likewife inform us, Tkit ¥ce have no caufe to glory 

caule to glory \ n our ownftrength. Let not the wife man g^ory in his wifdom , 
in oa r " rer S :h » neither lei the mighty man glory in his mighty let not the rich 
man glory in his riches , but let him that glorieth y glory in this , 
that he knomth me^&c. ^.9.13,14. The fame I fay unto 


Vcr. 5 . He leadeth me in \he Pa ths^ &c. ijj 

every one of us, Let us not glory in our own arm , in our own 
wifdom, in our own abilities, but in God Art thou converted 
and renewed ? whofe Grace was it which made that differential 
change ? Art thou efcaped from the ftrength of fuch a tem- 
ptation, or of fuch a corruption ? haft thou ftrength to deiirc 
good , and a will to delight in good , and adual power to do 
good ? BlefTe not thy felf, but thy God ; magnifie not thy 
lelf, but thy Leader. Certum eft nos velle cum vtlumus fed UU 
facit ut velimut bonum : Cert urn eft nos facer e cum facimus fed 
ille tariff ut faciamus prxbendo vires effcacijfimas voluntas, 
faidS. Av.ftin^ lib.de Grat.& lib. arb.c.16. It was thy God 
who led thee out of thy temptation,and ftrengthned thee againft 
thy corruption, and wrought in thee to will and to do,who di- 
rected thy foot-fteps,and eftabliftied thy goings, and preferved 
thy wayes. 

3. Do even Converted perfons need God for their Leader ? Follow G 
Then let them be fo humbly wife and careful, as having him for thy Lcaicr. 
tl.eir Leader, to follow him; Divine guidance is a merciful ftar, 
which though other men regard nor, \ et the wife men will look 
after and follow. To inforce this upon you, confider a few par- 

Firft, That as there is no God like to him, fo there £** There ?s no 
Gmde like unto him-, other guides are utterly falfe or extremely juidc HktGdd, 
imperfect. N^ 

(farnal reafonjs a better wrangler then conduftor,and more Catrn; R^fcn 
apt to difpute againft the true Guide , then to leade us unto 
him, or after him •, and therefore the Apoftle affirms that the 
fecular wifdom ofmer, id tut foolifineffe with god. 

The judgments of mtn, though in iome things they are ere- The JuJ 
ditable,andmay lead in their order, and degree, and hmitati- mcn:sot ™ cn . 
on, as a Serjeant fometimes leads a company , yet are they not 
infallible and (imply incapable of Error. 

The Pope % ("whom the Papiits cry up for a God, and to whofe The Pope, 
chair they afcribe fuch unerring pnver) yet even He cannot 
juftly challenge more infallibility then his fuppofed Predecefi 
S. 'Piter, who gave fome connivance to a dangerous miftake in 
Doctrinals, as appears by S.Pauls reprehenfion of him/; 
Acd alfo erred in pradicals, as appears in the denial of h 1 


i 3 « 

He leadeth me in the Paths of> &c« Vcr.3 

That the Tope may err in Life, it is granted by all under- 
ftanding writers •, ISellarmin is not againft Error in C.werfa- 
tion. And Hefiw the Cardinal (if it be he who drew up the 
libje Rem. Synod of Petrikovta) fpeaks freely, Non omnes eos habent vita 
Pont,c.%. Santlitatem, Joabent tamen unblionu fantlitatem , though they 

C^.xs>.pjg.i5.have the Sanctity of office and calling, yet all of them have not 
the fan&tty of life or convention. Si Judas e(l , quandoqui- 
dem Apeftolus eft, nihil entoveat, quod fur eft, well fpoken. Nay, 
moreover as he may and doth err in Converfation ( fome of 
the Popes have been Conjurers, Sodomites, forcerers, &c. ) fo 
be may err in Doctrine or Predication. Why elfe thofe pro- 
vifions by the Canonifts, de depenendo Tap* in cafu Harejeor, 
which Cajetan relates in his book de pot eft ate Pap<e & Qonci* 
In, c.i 7. 
Lib a Je Rom. ^ ea > BeSarmin himfelf (one of the ftrongeft Champions 
Fonts 7. Fap l ^ at ever t ^ lc Po P e ^d) confefleth, That the Pope, of himfelf, 
tx ratur&Jua, may fall into herefie. And then that is but a ridiculous evafi- 
poteji inctdm on of his,That though the Pope be an heretick,yet he cannot de 



fine heretically«for he who is an heretick is of all other the molt 
apt to vent and maintain his herefie, becaufe perverfenefs, and 
obftinacy v and pride are natural to an heretick.Nay,and Cajetan 
(loc. cit.) lets fall words, which if they do not intimate herefie, 
yet, at leaft,fomething worfe then it, That the fentence of £7f- 
rnent the Pope prevailed before the opinion of John the Evan- 
gelift,*» Dottrina Fidei , in a bufinefleof Faith. And all the 
world knew that fob* the 22 and Nicholas the 3 did de- 
cree (even in matters of Faith ) contrary one to another. 
And as among the judgments of men, the Pope is not 
a fafe Guide , fo neither the Judgments of Councils , whe- 
ther general or particulate fit to be abfolute Guides or Lead* 
ers, much leiTefuch Councils as were neither general nor Or- 
thodox. Though next to the Scripture, lawfu^Orthodox, ge- 
neral Councils are of higheft Authority and not to be flighted , 
yetfimply and abfolutely they sre not infallible, nor of the 
fame authority with the unerring Scriptures. What is natural- 
ly incident to every one, by a meer concourfe or meeting of 
many, doth not priviledge any one, laid Ockhxrn in Diolog. 
C.^o. Non mutatur a loco quod datur a naturafeid JVicl^Hff. And 
S. Auftin tells the Donatifts, that the former plemrU concilia 


Ver.J. Helcadethmeintbe Patbs^&cc. 137 

were mended by the latter ., if mended , then not unerring. 
Nay, to deal plainly, there was a Council (furcly it was that of 
CovftAvce, was it not in the time of John Hns and Hierom of 
Trague ?) viY \ch ^ on (b ft ante Chrifti itf/?/7«nW,notwithlhnd- 
ing the Inftitution of Chritl took away the Cup in the Sacra- 
ment,&c. And we plainly read an ex preiTe variance with that 
ancient Council ofConftantin>p/e in the time of Conflantin a- 
g.iinlt Images •, and the Council of Romt, under Pope Stepl. «r, 
the one concluding for them, as the former did againft them. 
Surely diiTent from Gods word, and ditfent among themfelves, 
muftneeefTanly imply fallibiky and error. 

Come we down from thefe to the judgments of the Fathers: Fathers. 
We may fay of them as guintillian doth of the Orator , That 
he is Homo optimtts , homo tamen^ the choiceft of men, yeta 
man ; or as we fay of the Stars, Heavenly and high creatures, 
yettwinckling^ and of candles, they give # a light ^ut with a 
fnuff: So are the Fathers^ learned men, worthy instruments of 
good to the Church, and yet not unerring Guides. And there - 
fore lincentiw Ltrinenfis fa\th , That the ancient opinion of^ . . 
the Fathers is not to be received in all Queftions , but only in ^ an r 
fuch things which principally refer to the rule of Faith. And 
here alio (\£StapUton the Jefuite err not) tbey fometimesco«'r^v.j.^ 
did forget themfelves, the Eagernefle of difpute , the Turbu- Mtdiis I.7.C.16 
lency of paffion , the Limitation of judgment hindring Some- 
times a full fight of what was Truth. Hence is it that S. An- p - 
pin (one ofthe famous of all the Fathers) in his retractations, 
unties and mends many things which he had fpoken And deli- 
vered before. And who knows not S fer m miftaken about 
fecond marriages-, and TtrtuSianj tincture of OWontanifm -, 
and Origin was not clear neither in all his praftifes: 'for he threw 
incenfe into the fi e) nor in many of his Dodrines I (peak 
not thefe thirgs to cait dirt into \heir faces, nor out of an in- 
tent to uncover the Fat'ers nskedrefle, but only to let y 
know that there is no Guide like God. Though thofe pevfons 
were excellent and ufeful in their own times , and oiirsn*' 
And wedoitill makeufeof them as notable Witncfles at the 
Bar, yet we dare not, we m.iy not let them up as judges on the 
Bench, as infallible Guide$,(lnee we find toem, every one of th< 
in fome thing or other out of the way, wandring and miftak 

T T: 

138 He leadeth me in the Paths of, &c. Vcr . 3 

Any humane Thac which I fpeak of Councils and Fathers , is affirmable of 
Judgment. any human? judgment tyhatfeever and wherefoever. It is not 
fimply infallible, nor mud it be made a peremptory leader • this 
is to make the Bell-weatber , and not the Shepherd to be the 
Guide : when we fuck in opinions, and put our feales to them, 
and therefore retain and maintain them as good , only be- 
caufe fuch and fuch perfons think and hold fo -, as if any im- 
perfed holinefle in heart , or knowledg in judgment, were a 
priviledge to any from error. Why? the beft Chriftians arc 
renewed but in part, and fee but in part , may , and do err and 
fail in many things,and therefore are not infallible and abfolute 
Examples. The like may be faid of Examples , though of the beft men 

too : I confeffe they are goodly draughts, but no perfect co- 
pies, they may do much, but not all. They are like a skainof 
(ilk, which winds quick and fmooth , but ever and anon it is 
fnarled and intangled: Or like a finger in a clock which points 
out one hour right, but then for many others it runs too faft or 
comes on too flow. Examples of men are , in many things 9 
abfolutely erroneous,in molt things dangerous, and in all things 
to be followed with caution • for they act by oppofite princi- 
ples in them, and therefore S. Pauih\mk\f would have the Co* 
rinthians be followers of him no farther then he Was of Chrift^ 
1 Cor.n.i. 

Now if neither the choiceft of humane Judgments , nor the 

beft of Chriftian Examples be infallible Guides, muchlefle are 

the known corrupted Judgments of Papifts , and others , and 

our own corrupt minds , vile affections, or broken abilities to 

leadus. Only God is the moftabfolute and infallible guide, 

therefore follow him. 

Qoi offers his Secondly , As he is the mod infallible Guide, and therefore 

fit to be followed, fo he offers hi* Guidance , he puts forth his 

hand unto us feveral wayes to lead us. 

IahisPromifes It i n his Promifes , Pfal. 32. 8. I mil input! thee and 

teach thee in the way which thou fo Alt go , 1 Will guide thee with 

mine eye. 

IgbisCounfels 2 . In his Cotinfels • publiek,of his Word- private,of Friends: 

7/4.30. 21 . Thine ears (hall hear a wvd behind thee^ faying % This 

kitbetyay, walk ]* W it} "when ye turn to the right hand , 


Ver.3. Hcleadcthme inthe Paths&c. i>9 

and when ye turn to the left. 

3. In the manifold Operations and motions of his Spirit ,In thrmodoDi 
Which do not only irradiate the mind with the knowledg of olhij ^ lrlc 
Gods way, but likewife do knock at, liirup, and call, and cry 

unto our hearts, as he to the Benjamitcs, Do not fo wickedly , or 
as feremwb, tOthcKing, I pray thee let my counfel beacctpted 
yt>itb thee. 

4. In every AffliBion, which is either a whittle to call usoff Incvct 7 A#U- 
from falfe wayes , or a voice to put us on forward in good on ' 


5. In every Mercy, which is nothing el fe but a kindnefle oHncvcryMrrcy 
God to lead us unto Repentance i it is a gracious woeing of us 

to fellow him in his directions. 

Thirdly^ is an Honourable thing to follow this LcftAr.Other^'"^*^' 
Leaders though they have fome dexterity to lead in fome P^fJuoVGod. 
cular wayes, yet their perfor.al Vitioufnefle doth make much of 
their fervice and obedience under them to be infamous. But 
there is that molt perfect, unfpotted purity in God ( both for 
being and operation) that the excellency of his nature doth 
therefore fingularly advance the dignity of his fervice. There 
is no fervice (we fay) to the fervice of a King. To follow our 
ownlutts,is to follow that which is bafer then Hell- no man 
becomes famous by being wicked- fin is our only blur. To fol- 
low the world,is to follow that which is a thoufand times more 
bafe then our felves : It is as if the matter fhould follow the 
commands of his fervant. To follow the fuggeftion of the 
divel, this is every way contemptible. It is but to be a (lave to 
the great enemy of God and of our own falvation. You can 
follow none but God without (ha me and trouble, but to clofe 
with his Guidance, is his pleafure, and your honour. As long 
as the lfraelites, or any of the Kings followed him, they troue 
the Tathf of Bleffing, and Wore the Croons of Glory. 

Fourthly^ It is cur ovly fafety to fo!lu\\ his Le.id'mg. 3 TisI; is our only 
not Guidance (imply prefented which doth fecure the TravelLr ; ! ' r '* y :o tdli9 * 
If I direct him the right way , and he will go and walk in the 
falfe way, or by-way, he may meet with theeves, and robbers , 
and many dangers. The Jewes d d boatt much of the Tern; 
of the Lord- there were the Oracles of Go J to lpe.ik and di- 
rect, but their pathing in evil wayes, in the end, brought them 

T 2 to 

140 Heleadethmeinthe Paths^Scc. Vcr.3 

co mine and defolation. What avails it to have a God to lead 
us,yet we follow our filthy and worldly lufts ? We may pro- 
feffe God to be our Guide and Leader, but if yet we follow our 
own lufts, we (ball of the ftefh reap corruption^nd the iflue will 
belolTe and death. 
It will prove Fifthly, It will prove onr heft Vomfort, having fueh a Leader 
our bell Com- t0 follow him : As many as wall^according to this rale, peace 
be on them, faith the Apoftle, Gal- 6. 1 2. A Following of God 
as a Leader : 

1 . Is the mofl diflingui thing markjfour condition and difpafi- 
tion. See Gal. 5. 17,18, &c Theeffectual leadings, whether 
by the Spirit or by the Fle(h, diddiftinguifli the perfon for life 
or death, for heaven or hell. 

2. Is the goodlie ft ground for con fete nee to raife its excufing ' 
confolating imprejfions. This is the way to find reft to our 

3. Is in a fort the foundation of our hopes for an heavenly pof- 
ferfion ; if we follow an holy God, we (hall come at length to 
a faving and glorious God. 

For thefinifhing of this General point, I will propound only 
two things more • viz,. 

Wbat we muft Queft. 1 . What we wssft do if we would follow Gcd as our guide 

do if we would and Leader? 

follow Gad. , SqL Tothislanfwerthus, 

Take pains to *• You muft take pains to know his Voice and his Way; 

know his Voice Prove (faith the Apoftle, Rom. J 1.2) what is that good, that 
acceptable and perfeEb will of God. Search thi Scriptures \ faid 
Chrift, Joh.5.39. And) Thy teflimonies are my Counfellors, 
faid David, Pfal 1 19. 24. The people oflfrael were to corr- 
fult with the Vrim and Thummim for their directions. If e- 
ver we would follow God , we muft diligently confult his 
Word, which contains all his Guidances, and all our duties of 
following. They err, not knowing the Scriptures : Ignorance 
is thecaufe of Error and of erring, Heb.$. 10. They alwayet 
err in their hearts, andthey have not fyown my Veayes. 

2. We muft ftrive to conform onr minds and confeienas, our 

formbVu 11 " wilh and a f d}ionS *» *U things unto that will of God. We 

things to the muft not read the word and defpife it, or hear the word and 

will of God. cafl; the counfels and commands of it behind our backs : but as 


Ver.}. He leadeth me inxhc Paths, &e. 141 

when a copy is fee, wemuftfttive to write after it ; or when 
the Compafle is fee, we muft drive to fail by it • lb when Go i 
as our Leader gives us his directions in his word, we muft en- 
cline our hearts to his testimonies • or when he fuggefts and 
moves our hearts by his Sprit, fecretly convincing us of his 
way, and putting us on to go in that way , we muft not heed- 
leiTely pafle over, or gracelelTely quench thole motions , by 
hearkening unto our finful lufts . but muft blefTeGod for them, 
and chcrifh them , endeavouring to aft and to obey what 
God makes known unto us, without any delay or any oppofi- 

3. We muft deny cur felver, our own proud imaginations, |> C1 . 
and the counfels of our own hearts, and corrupt reifonings, .- t ' iv;s> 
and foolifh wits. If we will make our own hearts the rules 

of our practice , do onely what feems good to us and what we 
can like, we may cafily go on in a finful way, but hereby (hall 
we be for ever kept off from following of God in his wa yes. 
Two things will befall us by exalting our own carnal wifdom ; 
Onei c , that the foolifhneflc of it will delude and deceive us -. 
Another that God will not guide nor direct us. Therefore 
S Lmon excellently to our purpofeadvifethus, Prcv. 3.6. Ik 
all our rvayes to acknowledge &. ; w, and affaires us that if we do fo 
he rrill then dire 11 our paths, but neither of thefe will be if we 
be wife in our own eyes, if we conceive that we are able of our 
felvesto counfel and direct our felves, therefore healfo addes 
this advice in the next verfe 7. fie not wife in thine own fjes,fear 
the Lord and depart from tvil. Hence it is that Daviddc- 
fcribing this guidance or leading of God in Pfal. 25.4,5. doth 
likewife defcribe the quality of thofe perfonswhom God will 
teach and lead, v. 9. The meek^ will he guide injudgmtmt % and 
the mtek viM he te.:ch his wsj: if perfons be proud and pe;- 
verfe, felt-willed and confident, God will leave fuch to their 
own lufts, and to the counfel of their own hearts : onely fuch 
partake of his guidance who deny their own wifdom and 
ltrength,and give up their wil s to his will. Pfal.81.1r. 
myfeofltwonldnotbeArkin* V.12 Sj I give them up to their 
own hearts I*ft/ % and r hey tya'kjd in their cvo-'.counfds. 

4. Above all you muft beg for t'e Spirit °f G$d both in hiSBtg for 
direttion and in his a/ftjtance, Plal.143.10. Teach me to do thf Spirit c: 


42 He leadetb me in thePaths^Scc. Vcr.3. 

will for thcu art my God, By thy good Sprit lead me into the 
land of uprigbtnejfe. The Spirit of God is a Spirit of comfel 
and under (fundings for the ability of guidance • and be is called 
the unclion or ointment ( 1 foh.2.7.) for the efficacy of gui- 
dance. Oyntme.-.ts do free and ftrengthen, and enable the 
joynts for motion and fervice, fo &c. Your directions may at 
any time be read in the word of God, but the following of 
them,that ftrength comes from the Spirit of God, which can 
open an heart as well as an ear, and therefore this Spirit is pro- 
mifed to be given for this end, not onely to enlighten and renew 
us,butalfo to dired and enable us, Ezek. 36.27. I will put my 
Spirit within you and caufe yon to ^alk. in my jlatutes, and ye 
/hall keep my judgments , anddi them. 

How muft wc <j) Me fc 2 . But how for the manner muft we follow our 
follow Goc? Leader ^ 

Sol. I conjecture thus ; 
Willingly. *• V olenter ^willingly \ *D raw me, fa\th the Church, Cant. 

1.4. and 1 Veill run after thee. Its true there was no moving 
on before a drawing , (mott movemus, & alii agimus) but be- 
ing drawn, now fhe runs. The people of God do not follow 
their Leader as a Bear moves to the Hake, but as a child doth 
follow his nurfe cheerfully. O thai my wayes were fo diretled 
that I might keep thy tefiimoxies, Pfal. 1 1 0. 5 . They are never 
better pleafed then when they can follow Divine directions, and 
therefore David in the fame Pfalm ver.24. faith, Thy tefttmc- 
nies are my delight^ and my counsellors : they arc connfellors to 
many, but delights to few, to a David they are both my de- 
light and my counfellors. 
Before and a- 2. Eminemer : before all and above all^ yea againft all 
bove all. which would lead us contrary to Gods leading. / hate 
every falfe V>*y Mid David <7W. 1 1 9. 1 04. He was fo far from 
following a falfe way that he abhorres it. We all prefefle (ac- 
cording to truih) that the Scriptures are of Divine Authori- 
ty (zTim.$:l6 All Scripture is given by infpiration of god) 
if fo, then they are of higheft and moft fupreme authority. For 
who may be equal with God ? or what authority dares pretend 
fo high as his ? therefore he is to be followed before and above 
all. All commands or leadings befides Gods, are either the 
commands of enemies, which we ought to refift, or of fervants, 


Ver.j. He leadeth mem the Paths ,&c. 143 

which therefore mu ft veil and give way to the commands of the 
great God their Mailer. Sometimes others leadings are con- 
tradiftinct to Gods or fubordmate , and move us virtnu im- 
prejfa, not fo much propria & ixnara. If I find man leading 
me in his command to what is lawful, I follow him becaufe God 
in his word leads me fo to do. If I find man leading me in his 
command to what is finful , I leave him and look up to my fu- 
preme leader who commands me to be ledonely in that which 
he commands and warrants me to do. 

3. Totaliter. (J\ / [.tjler y faid a certain Scribe to CM& t Mat. 
8.19. IwillfoUo\\> thee rvhi:herfocvcr thou goeft. He fpake it y " 
( I doubt) out of a ra(h oftentation, but we muft fay the fame 

out of a deliberate refolution, wh ere fo ever our guide leads us 
there muft we have an heart to follow : where God hath not a 
voice to fpeak, there I confefTe it is not a fin if we have not an 
ear to hear, but wherefoever he fets up his light of precept to 
injoyn us, there muft our hearts find fome meafure of wills and 
affections endeavouring to follow him. VVhatfoever duty it be, 
or whatfoever condition it be,though much againft our corrupt 
likings, eafe,delights, as we muft follow God before others, fo 
him againft our felves. And indeed there is the fame reafon 
for our following in every precept as in any one. The reafon 
of our obedience being not disjunctive of either this or that, 
but copulative, for every thing which God is pleafed to injoyn, 
whether in Adives or Paflives. 

4. T or titer Qt Vhrilixtr^ couragioufly and undauntedly. It U;dsan:e-iy. 
is confeffed that in following God as our Leader we (hall meet 

with fas God willing you may fee hereafter) many inward re • 
iuftincies and withdrawing* of Spirit, as alfo with many out- 
ward difficulties and difcouragements from the world. If we 
will not have the world and fin to be our leaders, we frail be 
fure to have them to be our troublers : if they cannot feduce as 
to an ill way, they will oppofe us in a good way. But yet if 
we fee God before us as a guide, we muft, like the fhip,rife above 
all waves, and through all weathers be led by him j either he 
wiH remove difficulties, or iuihtn us againft them. What du- 
ty is it which God commands for which he will not 
ftrength to perform, and upon die performance, comfort? 
Three things wc are fure of, by following of him, his 1 , ' 

1^4 He leadeth me in the Paths, &c. VerTT 

fiance 2. Protection, 3. Comfort. As Jong as we are under 
his gu.darice weareafcertainedgOf his prote&ion as well as of his 
afiiitance. Luther would do his work though there were as 
many devils as tiles upon the houfes of Wormes ; and S.Paul 
would rather be led to death then to be mif-led or hindred from 
duty. No mans heart needs to fail or fear, whiles he is follow- 
ing of a guide who is in himfelf unconquerable and will permit 
none of his followers to be loft. 
Perfmrin^ly. 5 . Perfeveranttr. We muft follow h'm in duty as he follows 
us in mercy, viz,, all the dayes of cur lives. Thti Qod is our 
God and will be our guide even unto death Jo 7) avid Pfal. 48. 14. 
To follow God in our youth, and then to be led by the world 
in our age; to follow his precepts in adverfity, and our own 
Jufts in profperity j to be forward after him when times favour 
the wayes of his precepts, and to fhrink back from him when 
the fervice of him may prove dangerous, this (hews the diftinft 
hypocrifie of our hearts that we never followed him out of 
intire love (as the wife follows the husband ) but upon merce- 
nary refpe&s, as they followed Chrijlfcr the loaves. It is an 
extreme folly (beOdes iniquity) that men follow Gods leading 
but a while : They do not confider that he leads u; to Glory as 
well as to .D^rr, and that the farther we are led on by him the 
neerer we are to that glorious happine/Ie which is the fcope of 
all his leading. But vain man for vain things leaving a good 
God and guide, at one** difcovers much rottennefle of heart, 
andalfo incurres the judgment of Apoftates^ which is for ever 
to be left of God whom they have kft and forfaken. Thus 
have you the general nature and ufe of Gods leading, now I 
come more intimately to the ! wayes wherein h? leads, termed in 
thisverfe, The paths of righ- rcufnejfe j and fo I come to the 
fecond Propofition, which is this •, 
Dcclr.2. That God leadeth his people in the paths if right eouf* 

God leads his *#•' 

people in the For the explication of which AfTertion thefe particulars 

paths of righ- are inquirable .- 

ceoufnefs. j m what the paths of righteoufrreffe are : 

2. What it is to be led in thofe paths *. 

3 . Why God leadeth his people in righteous "paths : 

4. What ufeful application of this to our felves : 

Vcr.J. Heleadethtfteinthe Paths ^c. 145 

Jrihz. what the paths of righteoufnejfeare ? ^ ^ h$ 

.SV. A path (in the general) is nothing ellc but an open, and f riihtcoui- 
beaten way or trad to walk in .- now advance the term from a nc's arc. 
Corporal to a Spiritual confederation, There are two forts of , f 
paths wherein men may be laid to walk : pa[ v |° 

Some are called erroneous and falfe wayes j the Scriptures E rron cous and 
fometimes call thefe crooked paths, becaufe they do not lead us falfc pa;hs. 
dire&ly to heaven, but wind off. Sometimes our ow» paths , 
becaufe they are not wayes of Gods inftitution, but of our own 
invention. Sometimes paths not taft up, Jcr. 18. 15. inoppofi- 
tion to ancient and eftablifhed and perufed wayes prefcribed by 
God, and infilled in by the old faithful fervants of God. Thefe 
paths are thofe of infidelity, and impenitency , and im- 
piety. • 

Others are called right, or righteous paths , and the Scriptures Ri ^ c or rJ . 
ftile them fometimes the ancient paths, Jer.18.15. becaufe of a lC0 u S paths, 
precedent antiquity to (inful paths -, fometimes good paths, be- 
caufe of the benefit which doth refult upon walking in them -, 
fometimes the paths of the Lord, becaufe God appoints and ap- 
proves of them •, fometimes taths of life becaufe onely the 
living, fuch as are enlivened from the dead walk in them and 
eventually alfo they tend and bring us to eternity of life. 

In this place they are called paths of right eoufnejfe, which a- which are 
gain arc two-fold, either, 

1 . Doclrina/ • in which refped the precepts of God are cal- Dodrinal. 
led, The Paths of righteoufnefTe, if I miff ake not, very frequent- 
ly in Tfal t 1 1 9. and not without reafon, becaufe as a Path is a 

rule to a man in his journey, and that, if which he will ftill fol- 
low, will afluredly bring him to his journeys end . fo the pre- 
cepts of God are the rules of our lives, according to which if 
we do ftiuare them , everlafting life would be the end of that 

2. Or prattical: and this path of the righteous is that which p ra aicali. 
the Scripture calls the path of the y.ift, or the way of good men, 

If 4.16*7. and the paths of upright nejfe, Prov. 2. 13. Itis^** 
vivendi fludium, or jufte vivendi inftitutum, an order of our 
life and wayes according to the righteous will of God- Hence 
that of David Pfal. 1 19.105. Thy word U a light unto my 
path, and 133. Ordtr my jleps in thy rrerd. And they arc 

U called 


He leadeth me in the Paths of, &c. Ver.3 

of rifctaicouf- 


A two-fold 

reading : 



Which is, 



called paths in the plural number, not for diveriity, but for 
number, and fome of them refped: i.God ; 2. Man. Thefe 
are the paths of righteoufneffe fpoken of in the Text, Namely, 
righteous wayes. The ordering of our hearts and lives accord- 
ing to the right line or rule which is Gods word • a courfe, not 
an ad. 
tvh 1 • £**$• 2 « What is it to be led in the paths of righteouf- 

wna>. it is to -,. 

be lead in paths neile? ^.^ 

Sol. There is a two-fold leading •, 

1. Reprefentative, which is the direction or prefcribing 
unto us the particular wayes of an holy life. 

2. Caufative, which adminifters ftrength for the treading 
of thefe paths, and this is again two-fold, either 

1 . Initial, which is a leading into the paths of righteoufneffe, 
the fetting of a man into wayes righteous and pleating unto 

2. Progrejfive, which is a leading in the paths, Sec. {i.e.) a 
caufing to walk and move on in thofe paths in which we are 
entred, fo thatthefummeof the Proportion is this, That God 
doth caufc his people to come into, and to walk in righteous 

♦ wayes. H0/.14.9. The wayes of the Lord are right, and the 

jxft /kail wall^ in them. 

And they are called righteous paths t or wayes, partly, 
Becaufe the righteous God prefcribes them. 
Becaufe the righteous per [on onelj wallas in them/ Good 
wayes are ftrange wayes to bad men, perhaps upon occafions 
they may be driven into them, but onely righteous perfons arc 
led in them and walk in them. 

Becaufe they are the wayes "tohich are the right and onely ways 
to lead us to our journeys end. 
Why doth God i&^-S- But why doth the Lord propound righteous paths 
lead in righ- to his fervants, and caufe them to walk in them > 
ttous paths ? Sol. Reafons hereof are thefe ; God leads his people in paths 
of, &c, 

Fir ft, Becaufe they are paths and wayes fait able to his own 
nature. Every Leader hath wayes fuitable to his own nature : 
the devil leads in wayes like himfelf, (inful, vile, unclean, #r. 
And God leads in wayes fuitable to him ; he is an holy God and 
therefore Tcads in holy wayes • a righteous God, and there 


able co his own 

Ver.J. Hcleadetbme inthe Taths^c. 146 

fore leads his people in righteous paths. 

Secondly, Righteous paths are Ue b<ft paths, therefore They arc :h- 
Cod leads his people in righteous paths. QA is the belt befl paths. 
Cod, his people are the beft people, and righteous paths are the V 1 ™ sn ? re " 
belt path*. Bell: in many refpe&s : lfic 

1. No paths iokoly and clean- Sinful paths are alwayes dir- 

tyand unclean- there is no excellency in them becaufe they h P pSv $ c 
are made up of nothing but fins. What a bafe life is that 
wherein every ftep is but a difhonor to God, and an acting of 
the devils command? and deiilemeots, pollutions, &c But 
righteous paths are holy, fo J fa, 35.8 the high-way fball be 
called a Waj of holitteffe ^ and becaufe holy, therefore beft $ for 
holineffe is the beft of excellencies. 

2. Nor fo fafe. The Voay of the rvickfd feduenh them^Vrov. So fafe. 
12.26. Nothing expofeth us to more hazard then a finful 
way-, falfe wayes are alwayes unfure, many fnares and dan- 
gers. The Israelites were like to have loft all their lives by 
ftepping into a finful way, Exod.$i.i$. but righteous wayes 
though they may be more difficult to walk in, yet they arc 
molt ftrongly guarded; another way may be quick, but the 
Kings way is fafe. It is fafe to be in the Kings work and in 

the Kings way. Righteoufneffe \eepeth him that is upright in 
the Vt>ay , Prov.i 3 .6. No man walks in a righteous path but 
is fure of defence j whiles we follow Gods guidance, his great 
providence follows us. 

3. Nor fo pleafant. All good paths are paths of pleafant- S3 pUaTanc, 
nefs.in evil paths a man muft drudge long for a little delight,and 
that goes faft enough orTwith much horror of confcience.and fe- 
cret bitternefle : but every righteous flep(like a Role)fprouts up 
with frefher fweetneiTe-, in a good way^ a man hath the 
company of a good God , and the peace of a good con- 

4. Nor fo honorable -.Wicked wayes are ever moft flume- s ho . L 
ful, and therefore when evil men boaftof their fins, they are 
faid to glory in their Jkame.He who dares to crack his confeience, 
tekes the quick way to crack his credit. The feed of evil doers 
ftnll never be renowned; but righteous wayes are credit- 
able : a good report ( like the Phoenix ) rifeth out of a 
good life. No hjnor like that which is gotten by a gr:ci- 

U 2 ous 


He leadeth me in the Paths, &c, 


wayes are the 
right way to 

But a walking 
An evil life is 

ous heart and a righteous walking. 

Thirdly, Righteous wayes are the right way to heaven. God 
will lead his people in fuch wayes wherein, 

1 . He may receive glory from them ; 

2. They may receive glory from him. 
in righteous paths are ^ 

1. The onely paths to bring him glory. 
nothing clfe but Gods difhonor and our ruine. God hath 
a&ive glory by walking up unto his word, forafmuch as what is 
contrary to his word, is contrary to his honor. 

2.The only paths which faring us to his glory-yoickednefie over' 
thrones the [inner s r Prov. 13.6. It is faid of wicked wayes, 
that calamity and deftruflion are in them , Rom. 3. 16. and 
damnation to*,z Pet.2.2. but wayes of holinefle are paths of 
happinefle; Prov. 12. 28. in the way of right eoufnejfe is life 
(and it tends to life, Prov. 1 I, 19,) and in the path Way thereof 
there is no death. AW other wayes meet with death either natural 
or fpiritual,or eternal, but a righteous path knows no death, and 
ends in life, it fliall bring us to an end, but that is life eternal. 
4 thl y. How fhould the people of God be known to be his people 
God arc : known if fc £j not i ea £ t ^ em ^ righteous paths 1 a child is known by 
rfgh«ou$ nS m ^*W»i?i fiith Solomon^nd the tree by his fruit, kldChrift, 

The ptople of 


and every man by his walking. Thefe are the peculiar and di- 
ihnguifhing paths. Other wayes are common , the worft of 
men walk in them, being unconverted, walking after their even 
imaginations , andferving divers lu(ts $ and befides They muft 
not walk & others wal^ Ephef.4. 1 7. But where God chang- 
eth the nature, there he makes the perfon change his path or 
courfe of his life,as you fee in Paul, and in aligners who are 
converted, they go a quite contrary courfe, leaving the wayes 
of (in and now walking in paths of righteaufnefle, and here- 
by cognifanced and known to be the people of that holy 

5 Laftly, Their graces wouU y never be exercifed^nor fins 't 
fubdued^ were not the paths righteous, &c. 

For what is the exercife of grace, but a motion in a righteous 
path, graces breaking out, working, walking? if grace were 
only beftowed for our converfion and not for our converfation , 
ft sng C0U5, 'tis granted,then paths of righteoufnefs were nee41efs, but &c 

Again » 

Their fcraces 
could not be 
extrcifed, nor 
fins fubdued 
were not the 

Ver.}. Heleadetb mtin\bt Paths^ &c. 149 

Again, Righteous paths are they which meet with the wayes 
of our (infill lufls, and oppofe and expel them ; as I (hall (hew 
you prefently. Therefore God will lead us in righteous paths 
to fubdue thereby our unrighteous wayes. 

Now let's come to the Application of all this to our felves. tyfi 
Doth God lead his people in paths or wayes of Righteoumeflc ? Exsminc nbm 
then let pu refietl upon our felves, and examin What the p.iths and^t&t pa;h$ 
wayes are wherein we W^- are they Gods paths, righteous " b " cm * c 
paths, yea, or no ? Confider, 

1. There are covers paths and wayes that men may wal\^ in , There s-e di- 
befides the paths of righteoufnejfe : The Scripture reckons a va* vers pi:hs :hi: 
riety of paths and wayes ; as wayes of our own hearts . Salomons ni \ a ■•* in > 
Yonker will walk in them, Ecclef. 1 1 .9. And wayes of darl^ pjjj^f ^ h _ 
neffe, Solomons evil man will walk in them, Prov2.i 2,1 3. And lC:u r ne f s# 3 
of our owndevices, Jer.18 12. the fuperftitious man will walk 

in them. There is not a (inner but hath a path of his own , a 
way wherein he walks, but none of them are righteous, though 
they may (etm right in his eyes. 

2. Though every man hath a Path to wa'k in, yet naturally N rura j[ y ^ e 
the way of right eoujnejfe vpe do not know : They are all gene out W3y f r s h- 
cf the way, Rom 3.12. As foon as we found the way of (In, teotifnefi we 
we loft the pith of righteoufne(Te ; and like blind men, though ^ io no: lcnow ' 
we grope, yet we cannot hit on the right way , we go affray 

from the very Womb : Of all paths, we are molt apt to take the 

3. Of all 7> iths to Wilkin, our hearts are mofl averfe tothefe: An ^ arc mr ^ 
What infinite difputes againit them •, objections, and un-fub-ivcrfc to dm, 
jections of fpirit? Though we fee hell at the end of other 

waye=, and heaven a: the end of thefe Paths j we can hardly 
perfwade men either to approve them, or to ltcp into them. 
Nay, though other wayes have been hedged with thorns, 
though they have ftuck many an arrow in our lides, yea, and in 
our conferences, yet we refute to walk in the wayes of righte- 
oufneflTc. Nay,though upon the very entrance in thelc wayes 
we have experimentally met with better peace, and more blef- 
fing, yet, &c. 

4. Wh*t avails it though Pathet of Righteoufneffe be pre- To tnew ihcaa 
pounded untojou, a nd that you do l^noW them, if all this while you . I 1 ** P rofij 
axemt led in thefe paths of Righteoufneffe, but walk in paths of ^ "^\'* ■ 

inujuity? 4 bc^ 

151 He leadetb me in thePaths^&c Ver.3. 

iniquity ? God is pleafed by his Pioniers to lay open the right 
Paths and Wayes unto you • and we call upon you,and befeech 
yon to walk in the paths of life. How will you anfwer the Lord, 
if yet againft all light you choofe unto your felves the paths of 
(in, and death, and heii ? 

Oh}. But wiil fome reply, Surely the Paths that we are led in 
are thofe of RighteoufnefTe, for we do know God, ferve him as 
well as the beft of them all,and God forbid that we (hould take 
any ill courfe. 
Tbatycu may Soi * But that you may not be deceived, let's a little ex- 
not be deceived amine, 
confidcr, 1, The Properties of the Paths of RighteoufnefTe. 

2. The Properties of fuch perfons who are qualified to walk 
in them. And fo may it appear whether we be led inthera 
^Properties 1. The Prof erties of righteous Paths are the/e h 

©f Righteous i. 7 hey are Supernatural*, not only for invention,. q. a 
They arc Su- meer natura ^ man cou ^ never &*-& <> ut fucha pious courfe of o- 
pernatural. bedience s but likewife for inclination. It exceeds all the ftrength 
of meer nature,to inable any perfon to walk in righteous paths.' 
To fteer the courfe of our life by a Divine rule, and for Divine 
Glory •, nature may oppofe this, but inable to this it cannot : 
Itcannotfomuchasfeethisway , much lefle caufe us to walk 
\n it. 
They arc Dif- 2 ' ^ty ^re Difficult: It is more difficult to creep in a 
fault, righteous Path, then to run in a wicked Way-, for the motion 

in the one hath all the ftrength and concurrence of nature h like 
a bowl, whofe own weight and figure hurries it down the hill - 
but the motion of the other is through ftrong Tides and Storms 
of rebellion and oppoHtion. We muft wreftleout our way in 
the other, as the Israelites fought the way to Canaan. It's like 
the way which a Souldier muft make through the body of an 
Army. Many temptations, perfecutiom, furTerings, hinderan- 
ces from our felves , our own corrupt flefh oppofeth us in this 
way, by many corrupt reafonings , unbelieving? , fears , and 
fatan, both in himfelf and the world, doth way-lay us and with- 
ftand our pafTage. It is to me alwayes fufpitious when a man 
is quickly good, and can eafily do good; when he makes no- 
thing of going in the way to heaven, which though every real, 


Ver. 3. He Uadeth me in the Pat bs, &c. 1 5^ 

good man accounts the beft courfe , yet he finds k the hardeft. 
hafy paces and walks ufually are decitful and falfc. 

3. They are Hdy : Contrary unto, and conflicting with ^ • 
and expunging out all falfe and (infulwayes. The Altronomers 

have a meerhdon of the Celcltial Orbs, that they move at the 
fame time with contrary motions, v.%. from Weil to Halt, 
and from Halt to Weft. One is proper, and the other is adventi- 
tions from the motion of the Vrimum mobile. There is an abio- 
lute impoflibility for the fame celeitial body in tot#m t thus to 
move. I fay the like of our Walking, righteous walking is 
quite contrary to unholy walking ; it is lo far from a Compati- 
bility, that it ftands at much repugnancy with it , Hph.4. 17. 
Wallg^not as other Gentiles, in the vanity oftbeir mind • Ver. 1 8. 
Alienated from the life of God. Ver. 1 9. Who being p aft feeling. 
Ver.20. TSutje have not fo learned Chrtfi. Ver.2 1 . Ifje ha ve 
been taught as the truth isin^efus. Ver.22. And have put 
tff, &c. 

4. They are ftrait, and not winding and crocked". And {"hey arc flnic 
therefore righteous paths are many times in Scripture called, 

right, or flrait paths which lie twixt two extremes, or if you 
will, which directly lead you to the view of heaven; fothac 
here is at once a double evidence of our wayes and paths, whe- 
ther they be righteous or not. 

One is a reBitude of conformity, fofar as they keep propor- 
tion with the rule ; in the defect, not omitting any proper du- 
ty ; and in the excefle, not going in any (inful commiflion, lo 
far are they righteous. Righteous paths lie level with the rule 
and w.th theend- a man may fee falvation and heaven at the 
end of them. 

Another is, a rectitude of Tendency • when they keep a pro- 
portion , a regular proportion to the chief end, as all right 
means do. Are our paths of walking fiich? ( I do not freak- 
now of particular facts, but of habitual courfes) are they fuch 
at hold any proportion with the Rule? are they ftrait to 
it, and even? or do they not altogether fwerve and are crooked ? 
do drunkenneflfe, fwearing, whoring, lie level with the Rule? 
And whether tend the courfes of our converfatlon ? Do they 
tend to divine glory and our own falvation? Do you think 
that a courfe of drunkenaeflfe , profanation of the Sabbath, 


152 He leadeth me in the Paths >&<:. Veivj 

worldlinefTe,idleuefTe,filchineiTe, o mi (lion of good duties, are 
the right lines which will bring you to eternal life? or that 
God is glorified by them? All vagaries, either on the right 
hand by fuperftition, or on the left hand by profaneneffe are 
certainly irregular, and becaufe fo , therefore not righte- 

They are N r- $' ^cy are narrow '> an< * mt broad : There is not room 
revr , * enough'in them for godlinefle and wickedne/Te to walk toge- 
ther ; for fecret love of fin , and fincerity to pace it ; for the 
love of God, and the love of the world : Other pathes are fo 
broad that they can afford fpace enough for a thoufand lufts. 
A man may be a Hearer, and a Swearer -, and Proftflb?, and a 
Liar. Herods path will hold a John Baptifl and an Herodtas too; 
and the (fapernaits path will hold Chrifi,andthe loaves too. My 
meaning is this, That Unrighteous paths will admit ofOutward 
profeftion ; fome duties, and much finfulnefle. But as the hea- 
vens will hold but one Sun, fo righteous paths will admit but 
of one kind of Walk ^ Only of Love of God, of Fear of God ^ 
only of Truft on God , only of refped to Gods command- 
ments ^ No Rule, but his Word*, No End, but his 
They are Stri& 6. They are jiriEl , and not fo pleafant to fiejb and blood: 
You know our Saviour, Mat. 7.14. 'Becaufe ftrait U the gate , 
nd narrofo is the way that leads unto life, and fe"to there be that 
'find it. The righteous paths are (trid in a double rc- 

In refpeEl of Rules, which will not allow, no not fecret tranf- 
grefiions •, nay, not fecret affections of evil •, nay , not fecret 
intentions or approbation of thoughts. The inward man is 
bowed as well as the outward, and the confeience as well as the 

In refpeft of the Pra&ifes : Righteous walking is not living 
at a manspleafure, nor is it all in familiar fervices. Chrift tells 
us of Self -denial, and taking up the Crofs, of pulling out the right 
eji, and cutting off the right hand. And the Apoftle fpeaks of 
Self' Mortification, and of crucifying the lufls and affections of 
theflejh. He that wals in Righteous paths, muft be willing to 
obey againft his profit, and againft his pleafure too. He muft 
lay the ax at the root of the Tree, and hack at the deareftLuft 


Vcr.3. Hcleadethme in the Paths y 8c<:. 153 

that ever his foul bred, and never leave till he hath rented ic 
cut of his heart. And he muft get his heart broken for his fin, 
and mourn day and night before God • and againft hope believe 
in hope. All which arc ftrift and (harp works, and the princi- 
pal reafons why many a bafe heart will not enter into thefe 
paths of RighteoufneiTe. 

7. They are Solitary • I mean not abfolutely but compara- Th e j ^ 
tively : Not that they are paths which no men tread, but only tar .y. 

Few, which are as None in comparifon of the multitudes and 
herds which walk in broad and crooked paths. They are the 
way of good men, and the paths of the righteous, Prov.2. 20. And 
Chriit faith, Thtre be but few who find this path, Mat.7.14. 
The Prophet compares them to the gleanings in the field, and to 
the few berries left on the Trees after a fhaking. But generally 
itiswithmen,they wiligoin that fafhionasthe moft are inland 
will fpeak, as the moft fpeak • and will walk and live,as the mod 
live and walk. They will not be fingular,not they,with a fmall 
company of poor people (of no note) who yet are they , in 
Chrifts judgment, that receive the Gofpel, nor walk or be in 
the company of fuch contemned Worms. 

8. Which leads me to the laft property of thefe righteous Th e « lie . 
paths; viz,. They are fuch as are generally contraditled and ra iiy cancradi- 
eppofed: As the Jewcs faid to Paul concerning Chriftianity,a<dand oppo- 
Ad.2822. As {or this Sell -we kriow thatevery where it is fpohen fed. 
dgainft. So is it with righteous walking, this is the only objeel 

of mens blafphemies, fcorns, derifions and envies. The good 
wayes of God have ever been ilruck ax by the wicked 
hearts, and foul mouths of gracelefTe men : It is ncedlefle to 
fpeak of this practice in all ages, from Cain to this day. Cain 
hated his righteous brother Abel, and IJhmael feeffs at Ifaac, 
Saul per ft cut et righteous David, and esfhab accounts of Eliah, 
as an enemy, and tar*/ Micaiah-, fo did the Jcwes hate the light. 
Paul complains of fuch zsfpakf evil of the good pyajes cfChrifi t 
&c> Cajus Sejus vir bonus , mains tanfum quia Chriifianns. 
Our wayes, what are they } are they fuch as all men can ap- 
prove and fptak well of ? It is a molt fufpitious thing that a 
mans courfe is not right, when thofe who are known e- 
nemics to alt GoodnefTe (hall extol and applaud his 

i j4 He leadeth me in the Paths , &c. Vcr.j, 

TbcQja.ifica- Secondly, The Qualifications of thofe perfons who do or cab 
tion ot thofe wa lk i* p**hs ofrighieoufneffe. 

^aM^hf *' The y f ee * n excehenc y '* th °f e thin &* *t>ove all other si 

ofVtehwouf- ^ encc tnat pnrafe ofDavid, I have chofen the way of thy truth^ 

r.cffe. thy Judgments have I laidbefore wf, Pfal. 1 19 .30. When o- 

E'edion. ther wayesare propounded and compared out of a difcerning 

EleHio enim judgment they rcfufc the paths of fin , and do choofe the paths 

ppumrum. f righteoufnefle. As the righteous perfon is more excellent 

then his neighbour, fo righteous paths are the moft excellent to 

walk in to a righteous perfon. Put the Sheep unto it,they love 

and choofe the cleaner* way, though Swine make choice of the 

dirt and mire. There is a walking either through The ftrength 

ofCuftom , becaufe all the Country and Kingdom pretend to 

fuch away - or the goodnefle otEletlion : When a perfon hath 

judicioufly and ferioufly pondredall paths, and finds the paths 

of righteoufnefle to be befl\ and therefore walks in them. Thus 

do the people of God walk in paths of righteoufnefle -, viz,* 

Out of a deliberate Eftimation and .Election. 

Afo&ion. 2. As there is Election, fo there is AfeUion to thefe paths in 

Both of them who rightly walk in them. An affection of 

Defire. Befire : O that my vetyes Werefo direcled to keep thy fiat utes\ 

Pfal.li9.5- Order my fleps in thy Word, v.33. Teach me to db 

thy will, lead me into the land of uprightneffe , Pfal. 143. 

I0 * 
And Pclfchr/ 'Delight'. Pfal. 1 19.47. / "frill delight my felf in thy com- 
mandments which J have loved. In evil men there is no fuch 
matter, they have not inlarged defires for thefe paths. Like 
lick men, who have foon enough of walking : A little walk- 
ing in holy wayes is enougb,and much is too much. The paths 
for walking are a very burden, and alwayes grievous. And be- 
fides, Righteous walking to them is no delight , they are foon 
weary; a fool hath no delight in under (landing, faith SoUmon, 
Prov.18.2. *Tis true, they may be in the paths fometime's 3 
but they have no delight or pleafure : They come to Sermon, 
kneel down with the reft in prayer, read, hear, but they have 
no delight \ no affection in thefe things ; they are weary , 
and think every hour a day , and every day a year till all be 

3, As Affection is a property of thefe righteous walkers, fo 


Vcr.J. Behadethmeintbe Paths ,&c. 155 

likcwifeis Sttbjtttioti. There is an exceeding difference *cwixtSubj:&ion. 
actions and duties , as much as is 'cwixi being in the paths of 
righteoufncfle,and walking in them. All the pathings ormov- 
ings ef good men in paths of righteoufnefle, are duties and adi 
of Subjection • They are ferviccs in obedience to the righteous 
rule, and fuch as fpring from an obeying Spirit. So is it not 
with other men ^ Their actions which feem righteous are buc 
like other natural actions which come from them : They do 
things, but do them not upon divine refpects, or with an obedi- 
ential (pint. 

CircPimffeElion is an other property : They who do indeed circumfp:ftl« 
walk righteou fly, they do in fomemeafure fulfil the Apoftlesin- O n. 
jundion-, They dowall^ circuwjpetHy^ Eph. 5. and Solomons 
coun(e\,Thej dopitjderthdr patbf^Vrov.4 26. they confiderof 
Gods precepts and of their own wayes. The path of Righteouf- 
nefle ( I told you J was a narrow path, and therefore we mud 
take heed how we take our fteps. A good man is a wonder. 
There are many Eyes upon a Righteous walker : The eyes of an 
holy Cod, the eyes of a tender confeience, the eyes of holy per- 
fons, and the eyes of wicked and malitions pcrfons, who watch 
for occalion of reproach. Therefore they do neigh their ft epr, 
( i.) As I conceive, they confider whether that fuch intentions 
or fuch actions will be allowed in the balance of the Sanfluary. 
They walk with advice and counfel, and their eyes direct their 
feet • fir ft, May I do it ? and then, How may Vre do it for the 
beft advantage of divine glory? 

5. PerftClionx My meaning is in refpect of intention and^ ct ^i° n> 
endeavour. ItisaGoingon. So Prov.^.iS. The path of the 
jit ft is as thepjinir.g light , rokieh fibieth more and more unto the 
perfett ^.ry.^Thereis a difference'twixt the burning of a candle, 
and the riling of the Sun- the more the candle burns, the (hom- 
er it is- the more the Sun Ifhines, the higher iris: Or rather, 
It is one thing for a man to be a Traveller in a Journey an other 
thing to be a Walker in a Garden 5 there a man goes up and 
down awhile, and comes in again • but in the other, a man goes 
on many a weary Rep, he never leaves walking till he comes to 
the place of his Reft. An evil man may fetch a turn or two in 
good duties, or in paths of righteoufnefle awhile,as a man walks 
in his Garden for his pleafure. But the righteous man indeed, 

X 2 ;ks 

1 5 6 He leadeth me in the Paths of, &c. Ver.3^ 

walks on, proceeds from grace to grace, from one T a&ion to a- 
nother, from one meafur'e of righteoufneffe to another, till he 
comes to the place of his reft, till he hath attained his journey* 
end, the eni of hU faith , t he falvation of his fouL 
Gratulation. 6 Gratulation^ and that for two things ; 
If prevented ^ ne iS ytf f revettte d from erringjyc flipping into unrighteous 
from erring, paths. Blejfed be thousand blejfed be thy cototfel^axd Davit} 

to Abigal % that thou hafl this day withheld mtfrom blood. 
If called afciin Another is, if called upon to come again into the righteous 
tori|h;eous paths. &$ a traveller if he miftakeshis way(and doth not willingly 
paths. crre £ rom tne wa y as a t hicf doth) and any call him, Sir, you go 

wrong you muft come up yonder into the right way ,he is thank- 
ful for fuch a recovering diredion.So is it with thofe who indeed 
walk in the paths of righceoufnefle, (like men that would jour- 
ney it to heaven) if they be overtaken, if they wander like a 
loft fheep, .if they miftake the path, and are called up- 
. on and pointed the right way again, either by afflictions or 
counfel,or confeience, or by the word, They bleffe the Lord ex- 
ceedingly for feeking of them, thus going aftray ■, for reducing 
them into the paths of righteoufnelTe : It is not fo with a wick- 
ed heart, you do him wrong, he cannot abide you for telling 
him of his wandring eftate and courfes, Have you nothing elfe 
to ffeak. w* °r t° do ? every vejfel /ball ft and upon its own bot- 
tom, and ftby areyoufobufie ? 
Vfezl ' -If we find that we do not walk in paths of righteoufneffe, 
Exhortation tolet us then henceforth be exhorted and perfwaded to turn away 
turn our feet our j eet f rQm a Q crooked paths , and to come into and walk in 
from crooked <jy av ^ f p^ nay m Gods paths. 

** c s * 1, It will be no dif grace unto you, For as much as the great- 

It will be no c ft anc j ^ bell who ever lived on the earth, have walKed in 
dif S raccunto ^^ pat hs;not only Patriarchs,and Prophets, and Apoftles,and 
you ' Kings, but even Jefus Chrift the Son of God, the Heir of all 

things, the Prince of peace, the Lord of glory, our Saviour. 
Nohattunp %, No hurt unto you. Who is he thatVoill karmyoti,if yp 
you. be followers of what is good} 1 Pet $. 13; All the event h this, 

you are going to heaven, you are running a race to fave your 
A i hte- fouls, and need you to fear this? to-ftart at this? 
©uscourfc will 3« Affurcdly an unrighteous course will be your everlafting 
be your mint, rtune: follow the trad (if you pleafe) of licentions and un- 

Vcr.3 . tie leadetb me in the Paths^Scc. 1 5 

godly men, every one of them treads the paths of death, noe 
one of them knows the wayes of peace or life. 

4, It is not an arbitrary courje • in which if you will walk I c f$no:an ar- 
you may, and if you will not you may chufe, and there's an end, binary conrfc 
No I but paths of righteoufnefTc are commanded paths, and as 
you tender your everlafting falvation you muft walk in them. 

Now there are two things which I will infift on : 

1. What a man muft do, fo that he may come to walk in 
paths of righteoufnefle? 

2. How for the manner he is to order his fteps and courfe 
in thefe paths? 

Queft 1. For the firft queftion, whataperfon muft do that What 1 mm 
he may be brought to walk in paths of righteoufnefle } mull do co 

Sol. He muft get fuch alight of under ft anding which muft^ 1 ^^ 
clecrhismindof \. extreme vanity ,and 2. of unjuft prejudi* nc fl\ # 
ce i : for till we fee thefe paths aright in their native formofGccfucha 
beauty, we (hall never fubmit our hearts to enter or walk in biht of under- 
them • therefore, . i^ndinjasco 

Firft, We muft ftudioufly clear the mind of fome fpecial va- £*? .'J* m,ncf - 
mttes and leftd concetti, v.g. as that it matters not howany van ^w 
man lives, he may be of what religion he likes, when he dies 
there's an end, there's no necetfity of fuch righteous paths , or 
ftrid walking in them. Thefe are Atheiftical principles and 
do not onely ftrike at paths of righteoufnefTe but alfo at the 
God of righteoufnefTe. 

2. We muft deer our mind? of ungrounded prejudices : as long OF unjround- 
as righteous paths,(through ignorance) feem contemptible ways, td prejudice 
fit onely for bafe, mean, poor fellows or elfe dangerous Wuyes , 
fuch as will mine us in our eftates and fafeties;or impoffble ways, 
fuch as no man living can ever keep his feet in them, no marvel 
if men ftand off, keep a diftancefrom thefe paths. 

The firft direction therefore, which I therefore give is this, G re the eyes of 
toget the eyes of your mind to be inhghtned by the Spirit of y° urminJro 
God in a diligent ftudy ef his word (which dothdiftinaiy, bc inl, l hmci - 
and infallibly discover the paths to heaven) to fee the nature, 
and the excellency, and the necefTny,and the utility of thefe 
paths of righteoufnefTe, when once you come to fee they are 
paths of Gods making, that he appoints and commands them, 
that none arc like unto them^goodnefle, peace, life, and falva- 


TfS & e tetdtth me in the Paths ,&c. VcrTj 

tion is in them^ now, may you get hearts to wall^ in them. 
€c: hearts to 2 - You muft get hearts to love them^ as well as eyes to fee 
love thefe ways them •, though the brain be the Spring of fenfitive morion, yec 
the heart is the original of vital motion. In morals ve move 
rather by the goodnefTe of the will, then by the ftrength of the 
underftanding ; if you fee good wayes and loath them, righ- 
teous paths and care not for them, why 1 you can .lever be led 
in them, but once get hearts to like, and you will quickly get 
feet to walk in them. 
There mutt be 3- There muft be fclid mortification of the heart , or elfe 
afolid morcifi.youcan never come to walk in thefe paths ; you may as fcon 
cation of the exped that a man lame with the extremity of the gout ( who 
bca:t ' cannot endure to put his foot to the ground) that this man 

fhould run, as that a heart laden and captivated with lufts, with 
finful difeafes and fetters, fhould walk in a righteous path. For 
he hath no principle of righteous motions in him •, nay his 
principles ftrongly and prevalently incline him to crooked 
Mortifie Two things in particular muft be mortified in your hearts ; 

The dominion The Common of flejhly lufls. 

of flffhly lufts, The dominion of worldly fafis. 

and of world- If that any fin doth rule, 'tis like a Bias that will inftantly 
ly lufts* draw y 0U a f^ e . jf the world doth rule in you, its like a broad 

ditch that hinders from coming into the right path • of a truth 
this you (hall find, that thefe two in their dominion will either 
l.Keep hs off from thefe paths ^ 2. Make ns halt in thefe paths. 
3 . Rtzolt frem thefe paths : Never care what men fay, but what 
God commands • and care more for thy duty, then for thefr 
There muft be 4. There muft be Rtfdntion and Courage. We muft not 
refolution and liften to Peters counfel , Ms.fler /pare thy felf: Hereafter I 
coaraje. -will enter into thefe paths, when things are more quiet, and 

when I can get my heart to a better frame, and in a better 
mood. He that would ftvim muft not put one foot half in the 
water and pluck it out and fhiver, but cold, or not cold he leaps 
in-, fo fhould we dd.not gratifie our rUrhy, lazy hearts, ior 
hinder our felves with future conceits and projects. But hav- . 
ing feen thefe paths ( by the word of God) to be righteous 
paths, confulc no logger but a&, fet upon the duty of felf exa- 


Vcr-3. Hetcadcth mcinxhc Paths) &c. \)0 

mination,fblid repentance, uniformity and fincerity of obedi- 
ence faith in Jefus Chrift, &c. Wc muft not e>; pea (foolifh- 
Jy ) that our hearts will fall into a frame of obedience. Set 
upon the work with thy heart, and that is the beft way to bring 
thy heart to the work. There are two things which a 
perfon mull: do who would come to walk in righteous paths. 

I . He mu ft flight all corrupt reckonings againjt them *. 

2. He rrntfl fcrCt hi* UzjJ ani unwilling fpirit to come int9 
them ; we fhall beft know the excellencies, and tafte the good- 
nefle and comforts of thefe paths by pra&ife- not by talking of 
them, but by walking in them. 

5. Strive for an ordinate defire of falvation and happineffe. Ic 
were no ill work, if men would ftudy heaven and hell more. s r ; V eforan 
What a deplorable condition it is to beinhelJ, forever to be ordinate defrc 
excluded from God , and to feel the pure wrath of Cod , and of iVvatior. 
flames of cverlaiting torment ? If men were not Arheifts a 
deep meditation of Hell might be an occafion to ftartle their 
hearts, and to work them off from unrighteous paths. So on 
the contrary, if men had Heaven more in their thoughts, how 
for ever blefled and glorious the foul is there, how totally freed 
from all fin and mifery, how perfectly holy for its capacity , 
how unfpeakably happy in the vilion and fruition of Cod ^ 
And would eften work thefe things on their foul by a right me- 
ditation. O my foul I wouldft thou be damned? or wouldft 
thou be faved ? hadft thou not rather go to heaven and enjoy 
God, then to hell, and for ever to be feparated from him ? 
Surely glory is becter then mifery ; and falvation then damna- 
tion; Now then, O my foul'! what doeft thou think? are 
there not wayes which muft be ufed to come to any end ? and 
what paths will leade to that hell which thou fo trembleft at? 
or to that heaven which thou fo much defirtft. ? Thinkeft thou 
that finful ways bring to a glorious cftate? Oh no! all (innings 
are but iteppings from God, and therefore are but wandrings 
from God, and wandrings from happineffe. O.iely paths of 
righteoufnefTe leade unto the place of happinefle, and that 
thou knoweft right well. Why then 1 as ever thou defireft to 
come to thy journeys end, arife, fet out, be walkings if ever 
thou defireft to fee the face of God, get tie; with fpeed into 

pat! > 


x tf° HeleadethmeinthePaths&c. Vcr.3. 

the paths of God • let devils oppofe, let flefti oppofe , let 
all the world oppofe, everlafting happineflelwillhave, and 
that can never be had without righteous walking •, therefore 
away from me, I have fworn,and will perform it, that I will 
keep Gods righteous ftatuies, I will walk henceforth in paths 
of righteoufnefle. 
Vtivwt prayer 6 - ^ uc amidft all, there muft be fervent prayer for divine 
for divine fireng th tocaufe and inableusto wa'k in thefe paths. We muft 
ftrcngtb, fetch the feet from heaven, which muit carry us to heaven. In 
him we live and move^ faid the Apoftle,for naturals, much more 
holds it in fpirituals, The caufe of our heavenly life and righte- 
ous walking, is from a gracious and Almighty God , who hath 
promifed to give unto us his Spirit Jo caufe m to walkjn hisfia- 
xutes and do them^ Ezek. 3 6. 
HowweuWd gueft.z. Now for the fecond Quaere , hoty we are to order 
order our &t?s urfteps in paths of righteoufneffe. 

rigJ^Sffe! SoL 1 ftia11 not necd t0 fa y much i ond y a feW advi " 

1. Walk i» thefe paths diligently : a traveller muft mind 
Walk in thefc n j s wa y ^ a phyfitian muft mind his patient, and a fhepherd muft 
paths ci»gc«- m i n< i his flock. Confider every ftep, how regular and how 
conducing to divine glory, and our own falvation. Jofh. 22. 5 . 
Take diligent heed to do the Commandment and the LaVv, which 
Mofes thefervant of the Lord charged jou y to love the Lord 
"jour god, and to walkjn all hit wajes y to cleave unto him^na" to 
ferve him with all jour heart , and With all your foul : 
you have need to keep an eye upon your fteps y and up- 
on the inward fountains of your motions , I mean 
your judgments, that they be not feduced by error, and your 
arTe&ions, leaft they be tainted with lufts, and alfo leaft your 
hearts grow remifle and carcleffe, and therefore often take pains 
with your hearts to look them over, and to look over your 
ways :, furely you (hall find m every fearch of your fouls . as you 
do in every review of your houfe , many a thing out of 
Uniformly. 2. Uniformly. Haltings and excurfions, tripping in the 
way, or ftarting out ©f the way, are both oppofiteto a righ- 
teous walking. For a Chriftian in one company to be as zeal- 
ous as S.Taut) and in another to be as treacherous as Judas ; 


Ver. 3 . He leadah me in the raths&c. 1 6 1 

in one place to commend a holy courfe with fome gravity, and 
in another ro jear againft it with much levity • in fome things 
to be as find: as a Pharifee, and in another as loofe as an Atheilt: 
Thefe motions are but making indentures, a running forward 
and backward, in and out, and generally argue unfoundneiTe, 
hypoenfie, and folly of fpirit. A good man indeed fhould onc- 
ly do what is good; though he cannot alwayes write a fair hand, 
yet he fhould never write with two hands. As he fhould go 
with a right fpirit, fo alfo walk with the right foot • that if all 
his actions were fummed up, there might be found an harmony 
and confent, and bo other irregularity but which is common to 

3 Anftoerably. Not onely to his pro fejfion, that hisconver- Anfwcrably. 
fation be copied out ©f it, but alio to his means £n& long (land- 
ing. God is pleafed to give unto fome people, far greater means, 
directions, afilrtances, abilities then others- their way in fome 
refpects is more eafie and plain ; Now for thefe to creep, to go 
foftly, to think that every courfe of righteoufnefle will ferve 
and is enough, they are much miftaken. Thofe people who 
live under precious occafions and direction?, the Lord expects 
that they run in the way of his Commandments, that their cup 
fhould over- flow, that they fhould multiply the fruits of righ- 
teoufnefTe and far exceed others in heavenly-mindedneiTe, acti- 
vity of affections, integrity of conversions, fertility of doing 
good, ef-c. 

4. Prfigreffivelj. His walking in righteous paths fhould be 
like a walking in a journey which is a motion continued to the^ S rc ^ lY( I/« 
end, and if the perfon chance to miftake his way he thereupon 
mends his pace when he gets into the right way. The Apo- 
ftle S. Taul prejfeth forward toward the mar l^ for the prize of 
the high calling of Cjod in Chrifl p*/V^,Phil. 3.14. therefore the 
path of the \uft is compared to the motion of the Sun, which 
advanceth more and more to rft per feci day , Prov.4.18. The 
Chnltian mud have an efpecial care of two things • 

One is ft edfaflt ejfe, that he doth not fall back 5 motta rctr.- 
gradtu is but a feigned motion in the heavens. It had been 
better rot to have knoicvn the way cf rigkttoufnejfe, then a f ier 
rre have knoVrn it to turn from thiho/j commandment ,2 Pet.2.2 1 . 

Y Ano- 


He leadeth m in the Paths, &c. 


Another is forward neffe ; he muft neither go back, nor afide, 
nor make an halt. Every day he muft get fotne ground upon 
fome corruption or other, and make (at leaft) a little further 
ftep in the knowledge, love and obedience of Jefus Chrift, get a 
little neerer to heaven, to his journeys end. Therefore be not 
•weary of well- doing, nor faint, nor be fatisried, thou haft gon 
many a year in a righteous path, do not now lofe all by fitting 
Hill, never give over, put yet on, perhaps it will not he many 
years or dayes, but thy race (hall be run. 

Undauntedly. 5 . V ndanntedly. Thus did Jofhua, / and my houfe willferve 
the Lord-, and thus the people of God in If a. 2. 3. We Vcill w*lk 
in his patios ,and David, I have [worn And 1 will perform it , that 
I will keep, &c. PfaL 1 1 9. 'Tis true, vou may meet with many 
oppositions, persecutions, erodes, loffes. The Apoftle hath 
told of thefe long ago, That all who will live godly in Chri/} y 
muft faffer perjecHtion. The Traveller knowes that many 
changes of weather may befall him, but yet he keeps on his 
journey. And the Chriftian knows that the beft paths are 
moft oppofed : remember full that Chrift was on the Croffc, 
and by fuferings entred into glory. Remember there is a 
crown at the end of the race, lofe it not,let no man take it from 
thee, It is to heaven that thou art walking, to thy God, to 
thy Chrift, to thy happinefTe; keep thy path ft-ill, God is thy 
, fliield now, who alfo will be thy reward hereafter. 

Cheerfully/ 6. - Cheerfully. If a loving wife be in her journey to a loving 
husband, every ftepis pleafant : he that walks in paths of righ- 
teoufneiTe , every ftep he takes is a part of his journey to his 
Lord, Husband and Saviour, Chrift Jefus. It is enough for 
them that are in wicked paths to be fad: Come, come, let us ne- 
ver repent, nor repine for a fewtroub'es incident to us in the 
paths of righceoufneiTei Heaven, and Eternity , and a good 
God will make amends for all. 

One life more and then an end of this point. It (hall be of 
comfort and encouragement to fuch as are led in paths of: righ- 

Vfe 3. 
Comfort to 
fuch as are in 

paths of righ teouf neffe. 
teoufnefs, _ j. You are the wife ft of all people that walk upon the face 
^ uare f hewi '-of the earth. Wifeil, for your fouls (and if a man be not 
Left or all P co " wLfefor his r Qu[ he j§ ()f a jj mea the moft fyftfa) yoU hit on 

Tot your foul&the proper and infallible wayes of falvation • if there be any 

Vcr.3 • He k*deth mt in the Paths^z. 1 63 

path to Heaven, that of righteoufhefleis it : For your bodies^ For ycur bo 
in common calamities and inundations, if any man hath the** 1 "- 
priviledge, the Sanftuary, the Ark.* it is a righteous Noah. 
There is a certainty of deliverance from troubles, oroffup- 
port under them if our paths be thofe of righteouiheiTe. 

2. You are the choices! of all people in the earth. What i s Vcuarethe * 
he for a Chriftian, who lives like a Devil, and dies like a Beaft frfJjSj 1 • 
wallowing in drunkennelle,and filthinefle, as the fw:ne ^ belch- 

ing out oaths , curfing of God, &c. thefe are vile perfons 
thefcum of men, but The right eotu it more excellent then his 

3. You arc the dear eft people to Cod of any : dearcft'to his You are tbt ^ 
1. Affettionf. You are the people of his delight. 2. Inten- deareft people' 
tints. You are the people to whom he intends the Crown of ^0 God. 

Glory. 3. Providence : His fpecial eye and care is over 
you, and who fo touchith you , toucheth the apple of his 

For his Names fake ] f. e. For his goodnefle , for his 
mercies fake • whence you fee that all the good in any 
kind conferred by God on his people, is not for any wor- 
thinefTe in them , but onely for the goodnciTc that is in 

Y i P s a l; 





Verf. 4, Yea though 1 walk through the Valley 
of the fhadow of death, 1 will fear no evil, 
for thou art with me y thy %od and thy ft*jf y 
they comfort me. 


H E SE words contain inthem,onePaftoral care 
more of God over his floek, vik. That as God 
takes care for all good Spiritual and Temporal for 
his people, fo likewife he takes care againft all evil 
which may befal them. 

In the words there are thefe three parts : 

1. The condition unto which the people of God are ex- 
pofeable. Though they be fuch as are led in paths of ritf- 
teeufxejfe, y«t they are fuch too, as may walk, through the Val- 
ley of the Jhadow of death. 

2. The difpofithn of them in fuch a condition, £ I frill 
fear no evil.~\ 

3 . The ground *f thU couragious diffofition which is. 
exprefled two wayes, 


1 Generally £for thou art with me~\ 
zT> articular ly [Thy Word and thy fiaffe they com- 
fort me.2 


Ver.4. Tea though I W£ 3 &c. * 6 ) 

Concerning the firft of thefe. The terms are fomcwhat 
obfcure and need explication : 

The Jhadjw of death ] It is taken two wayes, either 
i. Properly for the beginnings or appearance of death , 
when the image of death prefents it felf in darknefTe and 
horrors, and fears, unto a dying man. 

2. CMctapdorically, for a perfed reprefentation of a thing 
and a neernefTe unto it • as the ftndow of a tree, or houfe, re- 
prefents their bodies, and when one comes into the fhido.v of 
them, he is very necr them. 

In this place the fbadoro of death is taken Metaphorically, 
and it imp jrts (umm* pericsih % exceeding dangers as neer as the 
fhadow is to the body (but afiep betVvixt him and death) and as 
terrible as the image or appearance of death, which of all ter- 
riblcs is the terrible(t,and therefore death is called the Ki*g of 
Terror^ the chief of them, unto which the dangers incident to 
D avid are here compared. The VMley of th? fb.idoVe ofdejth} 
Some read it in the midltof the fhadow of death. So the 
Vulgar Tranflation In medio: the Valley is in the midft 'cwixc 
the Hills, as if David did lie'twixt Mountains of danger on 
every fide. Others rather conceive that word Valley to be ene- 
getical and onely to augment the former phrafe, The Valley of 
the fhadorv of death ( J. ) in ipftfjima^ in fumma y in profunda, 
mortis umbra. In the very danger of dangers, in exceeding- 
ly exceeding dangers •, fo that phrafe, The Vallty of Tears, 
Pfal.84.7. (.i.) fad Tears, very mournful mourning. 

J wall^in, &c] Though I walk (.*.) though in my journey 
to heaven, in my courfe of life, I meet with dangers as terrible 
as death, and that befet me as the Mountains do the Valley, or 
as thorns and ftreights do the Traveller, yet I will fear no 

The words thus opened afford unto us many excellent Pro- 
portions • 

1. That great -calamities and terrible dangers may befal 
the people of God. 

2. That they are not finfully Fearful, notwithstanding 

3. Whatfoevcr their dangers are, God is prefent with 

4t At 

1 66 ~~ Ytd, though 1 wattle. Vcr 4 

4. Aflurance thereof is their flay and courage. 
. 5. That Rod and Staff, all afford comfort to the people of 
DoEi.i ^ That great calamities , and terrible dangers, even the fha* 
G.-cac calami-^,, f ^ eat h ma y y e f a i t he people efged. For the underftand- 
""„r ingof this Action, premifethefe particulars- viz. 
befal the p^o- * • TnaC tnere are ft veral (hadows of death, or terribk dan- 
pie of God. gers- fome are, 
Several Shi- x . Natural : As grievous difeafes and fickneffes which do 

NaT 1 dCath ' even clofe U P the day ° f llfe ' The pe ° pIe ° f G ° d are fubjca 
tothefe, Hezekjah had the fentence of death read unto him- 

and fo had Epaphrodittu 9 he was near unto death- 9 thc fliadows of 

death arofe upon both of them. 

M .. . 2. Malicious : Which arife from Satan, and from evil men 

Malicious. his infiruments . and they re f pe & cither? 

Their Eftates and Pcjfeffions 9 and thus either by falfe accu- 
fation, or by invafion, or by persecution, all that they pofTeflc 
may be indangered. 

Their Saftties and Lives jribUch likewife through the malice, 
and power, and devices of wicked adverfaries may be ftrongly 
befet. David was hemmed about by Saul on the mountains, 
tut aftep'twixt him and death ,and he all that while walks in the 
valley ofthefhadow of death. Dame/ in the Lions den, and 
the three children in the fierj furnace : Hezekjah and fehojba- 
phat knew not what to do. Pharaoh contrives the ruine of all 
the Ifrae lite s 9 and Haman got the Kings ring to feal the de- 
finition of all the Jews- and Peter is clapt up , and intended 
the next day for execution ^ Vaul was in the very mouth of the 
Liofi. the whole Church was as a bird in thefnare, Pfal. 124.7. 
The people of God though they be as gold, yet it is that gold 
which is in the furnace ; and though they be as an houfe on a 
rock, yet winds and waves beat againft it. Though with Noah, 
they only be in the Ark, yet that Ark moves upon a very tu- 
multuous and dangerous deluge. 
Spiritual. 3- Spiritual: 1 hefe dangers of all other are themoft fore^ 

and they are either, 

Out of the conscience , as terrors, and amazements, and bitter 
apprehenfionsoffin and wrath,which are as terrible to thefoul 
as pangs of death are to the body. 


Vcr.4« ? ea , though I rvalk ) Sec. 167 

About thtconfeience, as all artificial here fiss which tend to 
the fubverllonof Faith : Thefe are Snares an J Gins cunningly 
laid to catch the foul. Or elfe all artificial pratlifts^ which eve- 
ry way prove a danger. If men do obferve them, they endan- 
ger their iouis • if they do not obferve them,they indaager their 

2. The In cider; cy of thefc dangers for time may be three- Thc i nc jj ency 

fold • of chefedan- 

1. Indefinite. Though their mountains be ftrong , and neft jen. 

be raifed on high, yet they may be hazarded to the very duft, Indcfiiifo*. 
and be bowed down to the condition of the meanelh Prefently 
after great profperities, Eclipfes* fhadows of death after their 
Lucid* interval! a. Jib in the flote of his riches and goodneffe, 
abounding with thoufands, was brought. to the dung-hill. Ht- 
zskiahifret his Vidory and deliverance , was laid on a dying 
bed. David after his elhblifhment in the throne , was forced 
to Mie for his life from his lbn Abfalom. 

2. Sudden. As the ftorm may fuddenly arife which may en- Sudden, 
danger the Ship : So calamities and dangers may break forth 

like the lightning. Satan and his instruments may on a fudden 
( like thole in an ambufhj rife up and itraiten , anddiitreife, 
and diitrad them , as is moil: evident in Job , in David, 

3 . Long. T he children of Ifrael were in the iron furnace 4:0. Long. 
years-, ihzjerveswi the Bibjlonun Captivity ftventj years -, 

the grand perfecutiom of the Chriftians lafted three hundred 
jears^uW Conftamtine'stime. *Tis true, that miferies, afflicti- 
on*, dangers are but light and fhort in refped of ourdefert, 
and in refped of the eternity of glory which follows them, and 
m refped of Fa th , yet they may be llrong and long in refpeA 
ir fenfe and feeling , and in refped of the times which we 
are to live. 

Qaeft. "Bfit rvl: | ': of Cjod tXfofatU to fitch great Why arf th< 

-:-/, as unto the fhadows of death ? people of C^i 

So!. It is not that their (im are greater then other mens, for ixK) '^ :c co 
no people have fin fo fubdued as they- nor is it thitGod j s lu ^J^L5lL- 
more difpleafed with them then other*, for they are the people 
of his Love and Grace j Nor is it chat be minis not what evil 
men coroplot and contrive againit cnem, for his ever run too 



1 68 Yc*, though I walk, See* Vcr.4. 

and fro through the world, to behold the evil and the good. 
Nor is it that he cares not what bcfals them in this world,for he 
never leaves them nor forfakes them. But, 
Their danrcr *• The great neffe of their dangers, doth make way for the 
makes way for greatmjfe of his Glory. Excellency of art appears not in ordi- 
bis Glory. nary experiments and occurrences ; when troubles exceed not 
a humane arnne (a divine fiager is now obfeured and eclipfed) 
but exceeding dangers do illuftrate a more exceeding God. To 
raife Laz,arrts when he had been dead f guy daie< y to fetch out the 
Jfraelites when they had lain in hard bondage 400. years , to 
break a fnare when the bird is in it, to infacuate a plot of ruine, 
and to turn it to the ruine of the plotter even when it is a&ing. 
To break open bars of iron, and gitesofbraffe, and in a mo- 
ment to delude the Expectation of all the malicious Jewes, as 
in Peter j cafe. His power is made manifeft in our WeakneiTe , 
in our enemies power and ftrength, That a little veiTel (hould 
bear up in the midft of the Sea, a little fhecplive among 
Wolves, the bufhnot beconfumed in the fire,&c. Thefe ex- 
tremities do declare the furpaffing power, and greatnefle, and 
iupremacy of God •, That all the creatures are but creatures 
under his feet, at his reilraint,and that he alone is God,and can 
have all the malice, and attempts, and contempts too of foo* 
Jifli, envious, adverfaries in deriiion. There is not a more con- 
vincing argument of Gods Soveraignty, and of his watchful, 
real, and perpetual power of providence, then the perm iilion 
of great dangers to fall upon, or environ his peopte from which 
yet he can fo eafily, fo fuddenly refcue his j as Chrift by a word 
ft ill $d the loaves of the fea , which were like to have funk the 
(hip, fo, &c. 
They caufe 2. Thefe (hadows of death , or great and neer dangers, do 

1 ff m l ° fl £ ke €Ati f e f ^ em t0 $ a ^ $ tkcir i reat ( fCHrit y - When a ftorm 
iky*"** ari te tn itis time for theMariner to awake and lock to his tack- 
ling, and when the City is Eeleagured, it will make every man to 
Hand to his arms. Standing waters gather mud , andci;fufed 
weapons ruft : Even good people are apt to contract much 
rerniTTeneiTe of fpirit,and pride , and fd£cerifktence , they are 
apt hot fo to pize God or watch themselves, or coadv.vcein 
duties with that reverence, fervency and intention in the times 
oFpeace and profperity, but to grow worldly, and vain, &c. as 


Ver.4* Tea^thouglwalk^icc. 169 

Souldiers negleft their weapons when the enemy is afar off. 
And therefore great and neer dangers, like an enemy break in 
on a fuddcn,to make them look to their weapons,to drive them 
unto more ftriftneffe, and exa&nefie , and watchfulncfle, and 
heedfulneffe of holy walking. The Thief invocared Chrift on 
the frofs, and thought cf hi* kingdom, on neither of which he 
thought in the times of fccurity. You {hall find it that the 
hardeft times, have ever bred the moft excellent and diligent 
Chriilians • they have been more watchful of themfcWes, more 
regardful of Gods glory and will, more circumfpect of their 
conventions, more (tout againft herefies, more inflamed with 
the zeal of Chriit in dangerous then in peaceable times. Coldeft 
Climates breed ftrongeit and healthieft bodies : As heat in win- 
ter increafeth by an Antiperiftafis of cold. 

3. They do demonftrate the fdidity and validity of true T | ;fy jemon- 
grace: Whiles times are profperous , and a common ferenity ftr S[C the foli- 
overfpreads the Horizon of Chriftian profeflion, there cannot dity indudi* 
be made (quantum ad nos) fuch a dillinguifhment of fincere ^ G * cruc 
Chrift ians from hypocritical profeflbrs. Every Souldier will be Kc# 

a Chriftian when Conftantius pretends that way , but let nim^'j^;.,, : u .e 
threaten exile unto ChriiVanity (though he did it but in policy J Father of Con- 
new Troops fly off again. When the ftorm comes, then the/* iw/ "« did thui 
rotten fruit drop down-, and when cold weather comes, thcnJ Iipo ^' Sc ^' 
thedifeafed bones will ake. It is not every guilded piece that ^£ ' 
will itand before the Touch-ftone, nor all mettal that will 
abide the fire. Only true Grace will abide dangers and cala- 
mities ; that third fort of ground (which was not rightly rooted) 
could not bear when per[tcutiu*s arofe. The leaves are blown 
off, but the tree ftands- empty profelTors are blown off'b^ 
dangers, but folid Chriftians and well rooted,&c. Solid Grace 
is like to Solomons love, W'hich many waters cculd not cjutnch , 
and like Noahs tArk^ which no wave could fink or fplit It 
will make us cleave to God againft all perils , asP^ai profefTed 
of his Love, Rom. 3. and to truft on God though he kill us , as 
fob profeffethof his Faith, chap. 13. 

4. They incrcafe the Spirit of Prayer more : The Bird natu- , 

rally flies up in the fnare, and though good men be a lwayes^ S^pf 
apt to pray, yet dangers and extremities do fill the fails more : p^r mj;c 
When the Task^mafttrs doubled the tale of bricks and moft di- 

Z ftrclTed 

170 Tea> though I w*k, &c. Ver.4< 

ftreffed the Ifraelites, then they groan and cry unto heaven : 
When Paul was buffeted indeed by Satan, then he can pray a- 
gain, and again, and will not off without an anfwer. Cither a 
non nifi fercuffa fonum edit Attritio ignem ex filicibu* e» 
lec it. 

Jonas could fteep in the Ship, but he doth nothing elfe but 
Pray when he is in the Whales belly. The Mariners would 
give a world to put in at an Harbor when tempeftuous winds 
begin. The Chriftan is never more in heaven, feeking of God, 
trufting on him,grafping<>fhis promifes, then when the foun- 
dations of the earth are fliaken, when dangers increafe here 
below. Ifa.z6. 1 6. In trouble have thej vifited thee, they poured 
mt a prayer "token thy chaining was upon them. Hof.5.1 5. In 
their afftittion they will fee k, we early. 
Theylcofen 5. They do dijfolve and loofen the ajfetlionf more from the 

the anions wor id. Shadows of death make us better to difcern the fhadows 

"Tld °*" ^ e » C ^ e P oor em P t y van ^ es °f the world, and fet the heart 

jnore on heavenly purchafes. When the Teats grow bitter, die 
child cares little for fucking, it is a fine way to wean him from 
thebrefts ; the waves lifted up the Ark more towards heaven : 
when the world proves fuch a Chaos and fucb a deluge, that 
mere is nothing but forrowupon forrow, and peril upon peril , 
it will quickly alter our judgment,and make us look for a heaven 

They occafion 6.They do occadort 4 more tender bond of jn ft ch.irltj among ft 
a more tender cbriftians. It is with Chriftians asitisw.th pieces of gold, 
bond °* c £5^ throw them in careleffely , one piece perhaps doth touch ano- 
Umt tner > ^ uc i um ^ e tnem together, and now they lie flat and clofe. 

Or as. with (beep, whiles the wolf is far off, they graze divided- 
ly, one here, another there, but if the Wolf approach , they all 
run into one another, as it were, and clofe together. In pro- 
f00 ±**r — fperous times Chriftians take fpace to- envy, and mis -Judge, and 
cenfure , and bte one another > they ftand more upon their 
points, and diftances,and I know not what fond opinions and 
conceits- But dangerous times crack afunder all odd conjecture*, 
they make them to mind the main, and to fall in with fingu&r 
Thisimkes 1 affections of love and pity and help one to another, 
conformity be- y.There mult be a conformity Uwixt the Head and the Mem* 
md M^crs bers ■ Paffive as wel1 as Mfci*: J I thrifts fotil be heavy unto 


Ver-4. Tea, though 1 walk,$cc. I? l 

the death, no marvel if their fou^s (who are Chrifts ) fometimes 
come near the fhadows of death. We m 11 ft have fellowfhip 
with Chrift not only in his life, but alfo in his death •, and muft 
be content to wear the crown cf Thome /, as well as the crown of 

8 .Great dangers Are great improvements to the Graces of Cjcds Th?y are iai- 
people. I cannot ftand to fhew how they do both prove the provcmer.ts te 
truth, and improve the degrees of our Faith, and Hope, and ^ : * raccs °* 
Patience. As Paul faid, That his bond: fill out for the furth:- 
ranee of the G*fpcl ; fo do great dangers and calamities fall on 
us for the furtherance of our Graces. Not indeed ex intcntio- 
ne Agents, the divil means no fnch thing, nor his initruments, 
but ex bcneditlione omnipotent!*, God dire&s and over-rules it 
fo. As every further degree of water raifed Noah's Ark nearer 
heaven ; and every new prifon and trouble to fefeph was a fe- 
certitep to his advancement in Pharaohs Court • So e\ cry ca- 
lamitous exigent to our perfons is (eventually) a graceful Ele- 
vation, and itrengthening, and railing of our graces. The moft 
wine comes out of the Grape that is moft trodden; it \$S.A* m 
y?i»j allufion, fo, &c. 

9. Great dangers do likewife difcover the cordial temper f he re- This difcover$ 
al pulfe of evil men ; O they pretend this and that thing, how :h j. tcm P cro * 
much charity, what refpecls to divine glory, what love fhould CT l mca ' 
be among brethren j but ex ungue Leonem, we may by the great 
dangers which they plot againlt good men , fay of them as Ja- 
cob did of La ban /Except the God of mj fathers ,the fear offfaac 
had been with me, thou hadft now fur eh fent me away empty, Gen. 
31.42. So unleiTe the Lord God did arifeto reftrainthat gall 
of wrath, and implacability of malice in wicked men,furely they 
would raze down Religion, and holinefle, and holy perfons to 
the ground ; they would (wallow them up quicks, as David 
fpeaks, their mouth is fo defpightfully fetagainft them. 

10. There might be alfo another cau'e • viz. Becanfe theThcdsyoi 
day o f their perfecl ard happy redemption is not yet come, when thfir R f dcmp- 

they'fliall be delivered from all evil , and all tears and fears fhall :icn is not ycc 

l • j WLm. come. 

be wiped away. "** 

But the Aflertion is fuflficiently evidenced. I now proceed to 

make fome brief Application of it to our felves. 

Arc great dangers (fhadows of death) incident even to them n r 

Zz who u ' tl ' 

iji Tea^theugh Iw4lk,8cc. Vcr«4. 

Let ncnc take who walks in paths of righteoufneffe ? Then let Hone take 
fcandal and of- f can dal and offence, fo as to keep off, or fall off from p ;ths of 
fence at thcie r mh teoa f nc ff e by reafon of the dangers and diftreffes incident 

dangers, lo as & . , » J , D 

to k« P off or to righteous peffons or paths. 

to fall off from There are two things which are fcandalous and are apt to 
paths of R : gh- make men, Impingcre y to ftumble and demur concerning paths 
ttoufneffc. ofrightcoufneffe: 

One is, The particular Obliquities and falls of finch as pre* 
tend to the fe paths. 

Another is, The fpeclal Calamities ^hich may and do befal 
ferfonsentredimo thefe paths. 

Ob]. Nay, if Religion be fo hot, if a courfe of Godlineffe be 
like Jonah in the (hip to raife up fuch boiftesofls and dangerous 
ftorms •, If a man cannot enter into paths of life, but he may 
fit under the ihadows of death, be perfecuted , diftreffed, &c. 
we will be wife for one, and take order for our own fafety and 

Sol. Well, and then becaufe of dangers and troubles thou 

wilt not enter into paths of righteoufneffe. In what paths wilt 

thou walk ? there are but two paths, one of Sin , the other of 

righteoufneffe ♦, and there are but two ends, one of Glory, the 

othcrofMifery. Thou vainperfon,isitnot better to go to 

Heaven maimed, then found to Hell ? Is it not better that thy 

Ship come in fafe by a Storm, then lie out and fink in a Calm > 

Who (that hath but common fen r e) had not rather with feme 

extremity attain Salvation, then with the quteteft fecurity Aide 

into his everlafting Perdition ? Though the dangers be great 

Tht dangers which attend paths of righteoufneffe , yet the dangers are far 

are greater greater Vvhich accompany the paths of fin. The loffe of riches 

which accom- is nothing to the lode of Heaven: The loffe of thy name is 

of fin nothing to the loffe of thy foul : The loffe of thy earthly 

tranquility , what is it to the loffe of a bleffed God and Hap- 

pineffe? If dangers are fo prevalent with thee, then 

rather come into the paths of righteoufneffe then decline 


Th« dangers try 2 « The dangers incident tv paths of right eoufntjfe they infinite* 

piths of rifch- ly differ from the dangers incident to paths of v>icktdne$e. They 

seoufnefs differ differ in the Cattfes ; Guilt in the one, Innocency in the other* 

lrom«hco;hcr. jj^ djfferinthe Object ^ the Soul isindangeredin theone, 


Vcr.4. ^w, though I rvafk, &c. 173 

the Body only in theothcr. 1. The trued: religion hath ever 
been moft expofei. 2. Th; mod righteous and excellent pro- 
fcfTors of it have ever been moft expofed. Abel , 'David, 
Cfaift,ihz Apofties, Martyr* : fheep amon^ wolves. 5. Ic 
muft needs be good which T^ero perfecutes^ confider what the 
men are who create dangers to righteous perfors, either A- 
theins,orPapi(ts, or Apoftates, &c. They differ in the ^W, 
one is inward, the other is outward. They differ in the opera- 
//<?«, one is a renting ftonn, the other onely a fanning and dri- 
ving wind. They differ in tbe duration , one is immor- 
tal , the other is onely temporary. They differ in their 
fupport: One is born with a galled and hell diftracVng confei- 
ence, the other is fuftained by a Divine ftrengch,and mu *h foul- 
reviving comfort. 

3. Though there be danger /, yet thty are not dangertw. There Tcefc Jankers 
are two things which afford fpirits concerning perils-, One,when :rC nc: d* n l*- 
they are devifed but by the vileft creatures-, Another, u hen rcus * 
they are invented againft us onely for the beft caufe. It was a Lih de civlt 
right obfervation of S.tsfuftin, Tantum intereft non qualia^Vci. c.8. 
fed quails qui [que patiatur -, To fuffer as an evil-doer, this s 
evil ; but paths of righteoufnefTc though we may receive trou- 
ble for them, yet no hurt. Arrowes (ticking in the Target do 
not hurt,thofe hurt which enter into the body. Sczcmcnin HijkEctlef 
the life of Comftantin related of two fouldiers, one who carried U. c.4. 
the Colours wherein the CrofTe was, and when the enemy 
brake in, he delivered up the Colours, and flips out of the bat- 
tel, but on a fudden he was wounded to death, when he thought 
himfelf, extra telomm jaEla-Jwx the other who held the Croffe 
though many darts were flang at him, heefcaped them alI,Miw 
tela a'v hoftibus cenjeEla, mirandum in modum divina virtute di- 
retta in ipfo figno infiguntnr , for all of them Ituck in the Crofs, 
no fouldier that carried the Croffe was wounded. I know not 
the credit of the Story, but this is certain, the erodes which 
befall us for cleaving fa ft to the Crofs of Chrift, chey may be 
terrible, but are never deadly. 

4. Though the dangers be great , yet are thej not ignomiriotu. T 1 ° sn S er s« 
To confront difficulties in war we account it moft noble, and yc °„ e naTi*. 
to meet dangers for righteoufnefs Hike, is both honorable and nominious, 


i/4 Tea, though I tvalk&c. Vcr.4. 

bleifed. As fteps in righteoufnefs are noble, fo ftripes for righ- 
teoufnefs are glorious <?iyy.<LT&xw*> A pious martyr hath 
ever been of more renown then the greateft perfecutor, caufa 
non poena, &c. The honor of fuffering depends not on the 
things which we fuffer, but on the caufe. When a man fuffers 
righteoufly^ his precedent (innings blur the honor of his fuffer- 
ings • but when a man fuffers for righteoufnefs, his righteouf- 
nefs will bear out his confeience before God, and .his name a- 
mong men. Therefore when good men fuffer from evil men, 
it is the art of evil men to invent and forge and foyftinfalfe 
caufes, as if they themfelveswere confeious to this truth, that 
righteoufnefs is a breft-plate to the doer, and a crown to the 
Thdr dangers 5. Though righteous paths may meet with dangers, yet they 
end in rewards.^// certainly end in rewards : CMany are the troubles of the 
righteous, faid David^ but great is their reward in heaven, (aid 
Chrifl : They increafe Grace, and advance glory. Our dan- 
gers are like them who prefent them, mortal and mu ft have an 
end, but our reward is like him who gives it, immortal and 
bleffed. Our light affliction Vcbich is vut for a momznt workz 
eth for us a jar mwe exceeding and eternal weight of glory , 
GodUoked 6. Be dangers from men never fo great yet God loo\s after 
after us and af- ui % and after them toe. When Pharaoh purfues Ifrael , God 
ter ourdasgers. j^j^ on h; m 3nc [ ^ h ft through the cloud. Evil men have 
implacable hearts, yet not omnipotent hands: their will ex- 
ceeds their power, but both their perfons,and intentions, and 
executions are all of them under a God who can chain them, 
and dafti them as he pleafeth. Moreover the God of fafety 
is with his in the times of danger, fo David exprefleth in the 
fubfequent words of the Text. Paul found it fo in his trials, 
that God flood by him. There are two that ftick clofe to a righ- 
teous perfon in his furTerings, a good God, and a good Con- 
feience Dangers, and troubles, and miferies are nothing, 
they iofe their terror and their force when thefe two fet in w.th 
the fufferer. Paul made nothing of Bonds, and the Apoflles 
rejoice at fceurging 2nd (ing in prifens. The inward peace and 
tranquility which a righteous perfon feels, fuffering for righ - 
teoufneffe fake, doth unfpeakably tranfcendall the delights and 


Vcr.4. Tea though Iipalk,8tc. *75 

contentments that the world can afford to another man. It 
overcomes pleafant and bitter temptations. There are four 
things which neither Devils nor wicked men can bereave a righ- 
teous perfon of; not of communion with God, notof con- 
folationinconfcience, not of help from God, not of fruition 
of happinefle. 

Are dangers, very great dangers, incident unto righteous <7,r ^ 
perfons? then lee me advife all who think upon or intend a Advice co"him 
righteous ccftrfe to precon/ider aforehand what the paths of righ- ^^ intends a 
tennfrnftcmay coft them, not rafhly to become profelTbrs, but rijhceouscouric 
deliberately to weigh and to digeit the worft that may befal <o prcconlnlcc 
them. Not onelythe fweet and natural effects of religion, * h * ri . c ™ 
but alfo the evil intents and pra&ifes of evil men • we mult fuf- 
fer as well as believe. 

Reafons why I give this advice are thefe j 

I. Be confident that if yon be throughly right etu , /ow*ify ubc ^^ 
k}nds of dingers feme time or other will befal yon. Paul knew ceous fomc 
that bonds did abide him. All that will live godlily m:+ft expeft kind of dan- 
to fffffer, 2 Tim. 3.12. Indeed if a man has an heart or a con- t crs *f^ bcW 
fcience that can laviere or tack ab^ut to any point, and as you# 
fomePhyficians have a Cathdicon for any difeafe, fo if any 
have a confeience temperable for all times and actions, thefe 
Politicians may perhaps cunningly lofe a foul tofave a body. You 
may as foon think to carry a Ship to the Indies without billows 
or waves, as to carry a foul to Heaven without trouble. But if a 
man does embrace godlinefTe in the power of it, and doth 
confcienciouQy order his foul and life according to the rules of 
righteoufnefle, troubles and exigences fome way or other, 
fome time or other, are incident to him ; Chrift inculcates it 
much and often on his Difciples. 

Ob. We may t.ilk that men want difcretion, and there .Vc 
expofe themfelves to trouble : poilibly in fome particulars they 
may (and I would gladly fee the man this day living who doth 

So/. But were a man as wife as Solomon, yet if he were with- 
atl as righteous as David, die difcretion of the one, would ne- 
ver quit him from the rage and malice of wicked menagainit 
the other.. There is fuch a natural antipathy in evil men to 
righteous paths, thai it is not the direction of prudence 00 nor 


1 7 6 

Yea, though I rvalk^&ccT 

If you enter 
upon a righte- 
ous profefiion 
withont this 


yet the obligations of nature, that can reftrain chem. Cain 
killed his own brother becaufe he was righteous. Prudent re- 
fpe&s are not of more vigour then natural. God hath fet fuch an 
irreconcileable enmity 'twixt good men and wicked men, 'twixt 
the feed of the woman, and the feed of the ferpent, that no true 
difcretion can ever compofe it; until you can pervert a good 
man to be evil, or convert an evil man to be good f you can ne- 
ver alter the hatred of fin in the one, nor the malicioufneffe a- 
gainft Goodnefle in the other. Ton fhallbe hated of all men 
for my names fak*, Mat. 10.22. Therefore look for them, 
though now in peace, now in profperity, ¥fal.$o. 

2. If you enter upon a righteous profejpon without expetla* 
tion of the croffe or dangers , its a thoufand to one but you will 
prove Apcftates, you will fall away in times of perfecution you 
will fall down With that houfe which was built on the fands,when 
you are in din- the winds arofe, and the waves bert on it, and great was the fall 
gcrto be Apo-of that houfe. There are two prefages of a heart that will 
ttates. nevcr h id out ftedfaft in religion • One, no folid humiliation 

for fin - 7 another no expectation ef trouble : When a man hath 
nothing in his brain, but a fools Paradife, he never minds the 
power of godlinefTe, nor the troubles for righteoufnefle.There- 
fore Chrift puts the Croffe as the firft letter for us to fpell. He 
that will be my Difciple, let him va\e up his crojfe and follow me. 
If the Croffe will not down with us, afluredly Chriftianity 
will not down with us. Some Jades if any thing croffe the 
way, or proves clamorous, they prefently throw off their bur- 
then and run away : our Profefiion will quickly off, if Croffes 
and dangers be the onely Hells unto us. 
it we forecsft 3« 1? before hand you premeditate the dangers \they Veil! not 
dangers they fo dejeZb and dif quiet you tyhen the) come: Telafrevifa minus 
ferimt. The heart can more earneftly feek unto God for 
ftrengfch to bear, and for refolution to perfevcre in righteous 
paths. Even fiery trials will not feem ftrange nor be fo pre- 
valent a disturbance, as to drive us to irregular carr ages^here- 
as if we look for no troubles when they do befal us, they will 
at leaft amaze us, and unfettle our thoughts. 

But in the third place, fince great dangers may befal us 
walking in righteous paths, be pleafed to admit of two forts of 
directions •, 

1. What 

will not fo 
much dijeft 
us when they 

Vfc 3 


Vcr.4- Tea^thouglrvalk^c. 177 

1 . What to be furniflicd withal againft they come : 

2. What to do when they do befal us. 

I. What to be furnifitd Withal before and *g ft £c 

come. ': *i h- 

I conjecture thefe qualities are excellent pieces of armor CO c dj n- 

put on before the battel. 

1. Solid repentance. Brethren it is of all rimes the bittereft, ^'cV ^ 
when a black night, and a foul confeience meet together j when 

the winds buftle without and conference quakes Within: when 
the malice of men is like theftiadowof death, and the accufa- 
tions of confeience are worfe then death* t fclf It was a won- 
derful rejoycing that S. Paul had in all dangers, >./*,. the te* 
flimony of a good confeience, yea, when he pleaded at the Barre 
for his life, yet this gave boldnelte, that he had exercifedhimfeif 
to ks e P a conscience vudof ifftr.ee tt\va>ds Ccd avdmen : Some 
think that fuch a friend if dangers fhould come, or fuch a piece 
of money perhaps will help, but, &c. You knew not- tbj vi- - * 

gorof this, when a perfon doth folidly humble, and ferioufly 
reform his heart and and wayes, purgeth out the love of fin, 
walks uprightly with God, believe me fuch a perfon hath made 
God his friend, and Confeience his friend, and fhall be able nor, 
onely to look the fhadow of death, but even death it felf in 
the face. If troubles prevent repentance they are exceeding 
burthens; if Repentance prevents them, they are but a l ight ~ ' m _ _ 
yoke : as the Baftlisl^ if it (qqs the man firft, he is dead • if the 
man fees it firft he is fafe. Sound repentance begets found 
fhoulders to bear, and (tout feet to ftand under and againft all 
dangers, therefore get it. 

2. Sincere Love. Love the paths of righteoufnefs for them- Sincere loft 
felves , fupra omnia^contra omnia. The Devil hath a paffage 
concerning Job, Chap. 1.9. "Both f,b fear God fr >.ought ? 
importing that there are different grounds moving men to fear, 

or ferve God. Some are mercenary and meerly fervilt y becaufe 
God may hedge about them and their houfe, and all that they 
have, and blcfs their works, and increafe their fubftance, v. 1 o. 
fo that the onely inducement unto them to profefs righceoufnefs 
is nothing elfe but profperity, outward blcflings, &c. Others 
are ingenuous and purely filial ; even the natural excellency in 
God and the excellency of the paths of righteoufnefs, though 

A a ab- 

178 Yea, though I ^ A k, &c. Vcr.4, 

abftra&cd from all fecular and tcrreftrial motives •, even pallives 
are made eafieby love, as Jacob for Rachel. Match. 13.21. 
When tribulation or perfection arifeth becaufeof the word y by 
and by he is offended. A wicked man takes ir ill that a man 
muft be fo put to it, as to leave paths of righteoufnefs, or riches, 
friends,pleafures, &c. Now if you would bear up under dan- 
gers, and calamities you muft then get a love of god, and of 
righteoufnejfe for it felf , and then though all thofe hedges be 
taken away, you will yet cleave faft unto God ?nd his wayes : 
yea though many waters, many tryals, many dangers fliould 
prefent themfelves, yet would you abide, and hold on ftill in 
the paths of righteoufnefs. Afhvethatfervesfora little mo- 
ney, he will fteal away from his Mafter if the enemies break in ; 
but the loving wife (he will take part with him in death, rather 
then fhe will difert him. TheApoftlein 27W0.3.8. fpeaks of 
men Voho were of corrupt minds and reprobate concerning the 
faith, (S.) they quickly (hrank, they made fhipwrack of faith, 
and a good confeience^hey gave off the paths of righteoufnefs. 
Why, what might be the caufe of it ? refled: on v. 2. aad 4. 
They "toere lovers of themfelves and lovers of their pleafures, 
wore then lovers of god. But they in Revel. 12. 11. Loved 
the Lamb more then themfelves , and therefore loved not their 
lives to the death. 
Self denial. 3. Self-denial. Dangers and Troubles do ufuallyfoyl them 

... raoft, who fear them and themfelves leaft. The trembling 
Chriftianalwayes proves the ftouteft champion s He who is fo 
forward to vaunt of his own ftrength, may on the next encoun- 
ter, mournfully bewail his own weaknefs. 

Chrift tells his Difciples of an exceeding danger prefently to 
enfue j that the Shepherd Jhould be [mitten , and all the flocks 
would be fcattered, Mat. 26. Teter prefently undertakes more 
then all, Though all fcould forfakje thee, yet would not 1 : He 
who was the greateft in presuming, was the firft and higheft in 
forfaking. For my part I like that Chriftian moft, who*'* 
aBiv?s is constant, but rifely filent ; and who in paffives is re- 
folved, but not too confident. This man knowes th e weight of a 
burthen, and will affuredly hit the way to Heaven for ftrength 
to bear it. 
4, Frith, There is not fuch aGraceagainft dangers, as tra's.' 


Ver.4» Te a, though 1 tvalk^Scc. 17? 

Nor to root and eftablifli us in righteous paths as this.* It finds 
fuch fuperlative excellency and contentment in God,Chri?Fr~ 
Righteous paths alone: it inablesaman tocontemn thefaireft 
beauties of the world, and to fail on againft the fouled llorms • 
It feeth a God, and our God engaged with all his mcrcesto 
comfort us, with all his power to fupport us, with all his juftice 
to plead for us, with all his faithful nefTe never to leave nor to 
forfake us. Wouldft thou be able to ftand againft dangers, to 
hold on in paths of righteoufnefs againft the fhadows of death, 
then get Faith. A faith to covenant thee with God, a Faith to 

unite thee to Chrift, a Faith that can admire the excellen cies of 
God and his waves, a Faith that can prefer the favour of Godj \ 
the expectation of Heaven, the truths of Chrift, theway esof - 
righteoufnefs before a thoufand worlds - y a faith that can find 
Heaven enough in God alone. 

5. Pious prudence. Which is fuch a circumfpeft difpofal of PiousPiudcncc 
our words and a&ions, that we do not give advantage to the 
adverfary, nor put our felves ungroundedly, or unwarrantably,- 
into danger. Fur though a man may be very good, yet his fuf- 
fcringjis not alwayes for what is good. To f after as a bu- 
fte body, or as an evil-doer, the Apoftle approves not. 

6Get a large ft ocl^cf all graces by prayer^nA now if daagers Ga a fate 

and neer troubles come, you will find you have not a grain ofjl ^ * ri 

Faith too much, a degree of patience to fpare, all will be ljltle^av" 1 

enough to keep the heart up : you fee what a do there is wTr3lj_7 — 

us to keep up in ordinary crolTes and lodes ; our PaftionslaV 

exceed our Graces, and we will hear nothing fpeak but fen feand . 

corruption. What then will be done in greater dangers ? you 

(hall find it a more difficult thing to bear up in Pafiives, then to 

goon in Actives. 

Secondly, what to do under dancers and troubles', .... , , 

r! ^ j 1 •/• * /•/-./ ; Wnit to do 

I. Loq\ up to Cod, and if ever, norv fet faith to ^c^. lin dcr dar.rcrs. 

Commit foul to him, body to him, iife to him, fafety to him, all Lock up :oGoi 

to him • let him do what feems good in his own eyes. If ever -md fee tai;h 

God will (hew himfelf, it is in times of danger, n r e kn r w r.ot on vfork# 

What to do, but jet cur ejes are upon thee , faid Jebvpj.iplat. 

Though we know not what to do, yet God knowes what to do. 

O reft on hi| mercy , his power, his cruth,never, never more then 


A a 2 2.Lift 

180 Tea^theugb Irvalk^&c. Ver<4. 

Lite up eyes 2. Lift up cries to God. Befiege Heaven when dangers be- 

to God. Hege you, in the (hadowes of death, pray much to the God of 

life-, all your fupport is from him, ail your ftrength, all your 
comfort , all your deliverance. Never infift on depths and 
heights of dangers be they never fo g^eat, fo fearful, its nothing 
with God to deliver thee from them or to preferve thee under 
them. There will be no endurance without prayer, no benefit 
without prayer. 
Sx'.rc Patience 3. Exert patience. Do not fall out with God nor with 
your own fouls, nor fall a railing at men ^ let them curie, buc 
do you blefs • let them perfecute, but do you quietly fufTer the 
will of God^your times are in Gods hand and your perfens in his 
Confider him ^ Qonfider him that endured fuch contradittion of finners a- 
fuch comradi* g atn fi himfdf^ lea ft- ye be veearied and faint in jour minds, Heb. 
fiion of fin- i 2 -3- ^ Chrifi endured fo much for me, (hould it fcem much 
ncrs. that I endure a little for Chrift } Thefe are two great cordials 

in our fufferings, viz,.- i. For Chrift. 2.WithChrift 
Courage 5. get Courage : Let not your hearts fail you nor faint. 

Dangers may feparate friends and eftates , but not God • his 
word will not fail you, his promifes will not fail you^ He is 
not a God afar off x He knows our fouls in a&verfities. Who 
was it that (hut up Noah in the deluge? in the hardeft times, 
you (hall be fure of the kindeftGod-, and if a righteous caufe 
bring you into dangers, a righteous God will bring you 

Now I proceed to the Refolutionof David : Though he 

did walk through the Valley of the fiiadow of death, yet he 

would fear no evil. Whence obferve, 

Dott.Z That Righteous perfons are fearle[[e even under the fhadows 

Righteous per- of death - ? (\.) In the greateft dingers. Here this caution muft 

Tons are fear-, neceflfarily be premffed, (viz.) That this fearleffeneffe is in the 

lefs under che r jghteous, 1 * when thev being afTured of their intereft in God and 

S rea«ftdangers are under thc power if faitb.This muft be remembred all along. 

This aflcrrion This afTertion is evident ^ 1 . In Precept : To Abraham } Fear 

isevidenr. »tf, faith God, G*».i 5.1. I am thy fhield. So to Ifaac, Gen,' 

Jp P.ecept. 26i24 . Fear mt _f or Jam wifh thee . Sq jrfop t0 his Difciples, 

Luke.i 2.3 2* Fear not little fluk, it is jour fat far s pleafure y &c. 

Vcr.4« TMj though I Wi\lk^ &c. 1 8 x 

So the Prophet CO the C hurch t Ifa8.i2. Saj you net a confede- 
racy, neither fear nor be ye afraid. 4; . 10. F ur them not y for 
I am With thee. 13, fear net I WiM btlf 'bee. 

2. In Pr alike : *Daw'd i» Persecuted by Abfalom, and for- i n p^ai^e. 
ced to flie, but not caufed to fear : Look on his mettal in that 
extremity of danger , he is full of prayer and full of confidence, 
P/V.3 .5. I laid me down and fief t. Some cannot lie do'.vn, but 
run up and down in danger • and though they can lie down,yet 
they cannot deep j but David doth both , for he had a good 
God about him, the Lord fuftained him. Ver.6. 1 Will not be 
afraid often thoufandt of people that have fet them/elves againft 
me round about. One man againft ten thoufand, Se* again!! 
him with malice, Round about him with power , yet he is not 
afraid. The like you read of him,Pfal.27.3. Though an heft 
fjould encamp againft me y my heart /ball not fear, &c, And of 
Daniel, he feared not a den of Lions . nor the three children a 
furnace of fire • Nor the Apoftles all the threats, prifons,fcour- 
gings, deaths, that evil men could invent or execute. 

But this Aflertion requires a little Explication, for it may be 
thought a very culpable difpofition to be fearlefTe,when as God 
commends fear as Caput Sapientit t the beginning of tvijdom , 
pfal.ui. 10. and com mands fear, Pfal. 2.1 1. Serve the Lord 
with fear ; and encourageth to fear, Prov.zK. 14 *BleJfedu the 
man thatfeartth alwayes. And it feemeth by S. Pauls defcrip- 
tion that the fearlefle man is the gracelefle man, Rom. 3. 18. 
There is no fear of God before their eyes. 

For the difcovery therefore of the fenfe of the Proportion, Thi ft D f c f 
premife thefe particulars. the propoh;ion 

There is a Reverential Fear of God, a Penitential Fear to Scared in the 
fin, a Diffidential Fear, a Fear that breeds dirfidence and d ^ ;nAions 

1. Fear may be takam two wayes ■ viz Either, F:ar m *y t> c 
Mitonimically, for the caufcofFear. "* cn \ . 
properly, for the quality of Fear. PcwKrin ' 

When we fry, That in the midit of dangers righteous perfons 
are fearlefle , it is not fo Stoically to be conftrued , a? if there 
were no natural quality of Fear in them, but that there is no jult 

2. But then you muft diftingu" fh of the motion of Fear • it 


TC4, though I walkfic 




Tbc motion of is cither Natural ^nd Regular ; 'Preternatural^nd Turbulent, 
fear is either Dangers may afficere ftir up Natural and Regular fears in them, 
Na:ural,and k ut there is no caufe why they fhould excite Preternatural and 
Pr^ernafurTl, Turbulent fears • namely, fuchas do untwift and beat ofFour 
and Tuibulcnc confidence in Cod. So then it is not an abfolute fearlefienefle, 
for this were ftupidity, but only a comparative fearleflcnefle : 
Their fear is like a Riverwherein a man may fafely fwim, but 
not like Noahs deluge, which overtops all hills - 5 it doth noc 
cbruere, drown their confidences and hopes. 

3. Fear may be confidered Gtjeclivelj , and Subje* 
clively : 

Objectively • As it refpe&s God , or the enemies of Cod. 
Now when we affirm that righteous perfons are fearlelTe in dan- 
gers, we mean not that they fear not God. Cbrift advifeth 
his Difciples, ftill to [far bim^rvko cancafl foul and body into 
hell. And fo the Prophet advifeth the Church in her dangersj 
to Saxftifie the Lord of TrLofts s and to let him to be her dread and 
/«*r,Ifa,8.i3. Only this is intended that their apo^a, or want 
of fear, is in refped of Gods enemies. So that it is not timor 
^riz>4nt/«.f J nofearthatisdue, but timor negative , a not fear- 
ing where no fear is proper. Yet the enemies of God may be 
confidered two wayes, either in refpeft of their Authority , fo 
they are fubordinately to be feared. Of their Cruelty, fo not 
inordinately to be feared. 
* Subjectively 4 And here comes in that diftin&ion of Pcenal 
$ubj*&ively. an( j penitential fear •, the former is commonly called Servile or 
flavifh fear 5 arifing from malum poena ; the latter is called J7- 
lial and Evangelical, which looks at Malum cti J p<e. This lat- 
ter is moft proper to the people of God, inwhofe heartsGod 
doth put this fear ., but the former, which is called fometimes 
mivv.dLf*Ki\tLs y thefpirit of b.nhge y Rom,8. and fometimes 
■smufAfliJWifiK, thefpirit of fearfulnefTe is in lingular degrees 
fubduedin righteous perfons, though not altogether; and be-* 
caufe denominations arife from dominions, they are therefore 
laid (in refped of this ) to befearleiTe. 

Eight Arguments to demonftrate the guodfit : 
I. In their greatefl ftraits they can go to their proper helps* 

Arfctirrems to 
prove the 
In their gtea: 

eft ftraits they "^ - 
can go to theft 2 ^ " ro 
propsr hslps 

now not what to do, yet our eyes are towards thee, 


2. In 

Ver.4. Tea though 1 'walk, Sec. 183 

2. In greateft dangers they are themfeives. His hi Art is fix- j n tr(gu ft 
ed, trufting in the Lord, Pfal. 1 2.7. And they can make ufe of j S n;ers\b<y 
proper abilities, of their Graces, as Lftfofes, Exod 14.13. FMrarciDemicWcs. 
?f aof, flandftill and fee the falvationof the Lord. Pfal. 4 2 1 1. 
Hope thou inGod,for I flail jet praife him who is the help if my 
countenance and my God 

3. Thty are then moft exquifite in fray er • rrtoft in pleading They are then 
thepromifes, moft in wreftliRg, as J**^, Gen. 3 2. Solfa. 648.^. ft txqaifr.c 
But now, O Lord, thou art our father ^c. V.Q. Be not wroth m ^ : ^ c: ' 
very fore , neither remember iniquity for ever , behold, &c 

Thus they fpread their condition, hold their relation, implead 
the promtfes, &c. 

4. Even then they can make ufe of their former experiences, T ^ (y csn nafa 
what God hath done to others and to themfeives. uu of fo-mec 

5. Their hearts have been very high Vcken their conditions have experiences. 
beenvery Mv, Hab.3. 17,18. Although the fig-tree [hall not M*/- Tb jj[ ^"^ 
f me, neither Jball fruit be in the vinr y &c. jet. I w^ r^^™ inXWcw&hio:* 
the Lord,&c. are [ ow . 

6. They have been carelefTe of men in the very prefence of rhey are care- 
extreme dangers • the Apples fing in prifon , reprove them, left of men in 
&c. The three children, Be it known unto thee, We mil not c . hc P rclcncc of 
&c. % 

7. They will not fwerve from Gods w*7/, or leave God what- jhey will not 
foever dangers happen to them, Pfal.44.17,18. AH this is comefazrvz from 
upon us , ytt have Vre not forgotten thee, &c. Our heart is not Gods will. 
turned back^, neither have our fteps declined from thy 


8. They would not ufe any unlawful means though at hand-^ cy W0G i<i 
to free themfeives from dangers y David would not touch the not ufe any un- 
Lords anointed. lawful means. 

This ct<po£^,orfearlefTeneffe,may beconfidered two wayes, 
either Quantum ad ^.jfeCIum voluntatis, according to thedifpo- 
fitionofthe will,or ^uoadeffeftum paffi nU % according to the 
excursion of the affcdion. It cannot be denied that even a righ- 
teous per fon hath feared dangers, tranfiently, in a pAflion, pre- 
cipitancy, as David, who faid, I (hall one day peri [h by the han&__^-^- 
of Saul, and thereupon flies to the King of Cjath-, but judge __ 
of them by the defire, temper, endeavour of the will, thus they _._ . 
fear not, their heart is fixed, they know whgra they have truHed. 


T84 ~ ' Yc*> though I wattle. Vef4 

Take them in fiat #, in the courfc, not in Motu t in every indi- 
vidual motion ^ take them in affeclujn the defire,not in effeftu, 
in every exprefiion- take them in the renewed part,and as thera- 
felves, thus they fear not any evil that man can do unto 
Reafons of this And the reafons or caufes of this fear lejfenffe of man , er dan- 
¥ carlefnefs. g ers by ma n, are thefe, 

God hath I. God hath Wrought in them a true fear ofhimfelf^ he hath 

wrought in put his fear into their hearts, Jer. 3 2.40. Now the true fear of 

them a true fear £j d purgeth or cafteth out all vain fear of men : As when 

of himfclf. W orldly forrow prevails upon the heart, one lingular remedy is 

~"t© fpring another fotrow 9 Godlj farrow, and this would drown 

the other •, So is it with the true fear of God , it is that which 

will caft out fear of man. Chrift bids his Difciples( though they 

were as Lambs among Wolves, and though they were caft into 

prifon, yet) not to fear men ; but how fhouid they help it? 

why, faith he, fear him who can caft foul and body, &c> So the 

' Prophet,/*? not a confederacy i &c.lh.S.i2. neither fear. How I 

a confederacy, a combination of powers againft them and not 

be afraid. It cannot be, Nay faith the Prophet, I will (hew 

"""you how it may be, Santlife the Lord of hofts himfelf, and let 

him be your fear and dread, v.13. Davidhath the like paflage 

in Tfal. U2.J. Tlejfed is the man that feareth the Lord, 

v. 7. Hejhall not be afraid of evil tidings, his heart is fixed 

truftino; in the Lord. 

They know ^ 2, They kvoV? that the originals of fear are not in the crea- 

that the otip' tureft Men are afraid of men becaufe they take them to be 

nals of fear are more ^ q men ^ j^ey do not underftand how weak and de- 

wrcs! 11 * ae pending a thing every creature is,both for being, and operation; 

Who art thou that thou fbouldefi be afraid of a man thatjhall die} 

and of the (on o{ man who fial 7 be made at graffe} Ifai.51. 12. 

q. L there is no fuch caufe for to fear man, for he is but a weak 

piece of clay, a very breath, a fading leaf, he mutt die and 

'* there's an end of him. He can do nothing Jof himfelf, as 

Chrifi to Tilat : what can the ftouteft arm (alone) do ? Man 

hath not power to flretch forth his hand, nor to fpeakaword 

but by perrniffion. Lahan dares notfpeak^ ill to facob, and Ha* 

Not an h&ir of wan could not for his life root up the Jews, nor could Haalam 

our heai*,&* ( though he would have done any thing for gold) curfe Jfrael 


Ver.4- Tc a, though I ivalk^Scc. i8 

when Cod reftrained him. As the Creatures cannot ihvefl us 
with gcod ; no more can they of themfelves infeft as with evil • 
they are like Scare-Crows in the fields, if the 13nds k new them , 
they need not fear them; or like Ugly Vizards, which look terri- 
ble, but that's all. TheOriginal Powerfor evil or for good,and 
the controlling power of ali actions is in God alone • Ergo, 

3 . They are in covenant with Cjod y and God with them^hcrc- ju ty arc j n 
fore they fear no evil. God delivers this as a Cordial to A* Covenw 
bra'') am againft all fear ; Fear not Abraham , / am thy fljield, God, and G:d 
Gen. 1 5. i. Though a thoufand arrows be darted, yet if one "M* them, 
hath a fhield to defend, or to take them off, he needs not to be 
afraid - 9 for a fhield that takes off the danger, is asfafe as an 

houfe where no danger appears. Now the Lord is the fhield __ _^ 

of his people • (i. e.) What a (hield is to our bodies, that is 
God to our perfons, to cover, to fhelter, protect , take off all 
dangers, &c. I fa. 43.1. Fear not, ver.3. For J am the Lord thy 
God. David upon this very ground is couragious and confi- 
dent, in P/4/.27. 1 • The Lord is mj light and my falvationjcvhom 
Jhall I fear ? the Lord U the strength of my life, cfivhcm frail I 
beafraid} his life did depend on God, not on man. If God 
be our God fasafTuredly he is if we be righteous perfons) what_____—- 
can man do againft us ? wherein can wicked inftruments be too 
hard for him ? is any thing too hard for god to do ? or can any 
be too hard for God to hinder him ? 

In Tower they cannot for his power is over all ; it is infinite, 
he is great in ftrength, rules the Nations, breaks the arms of the 
wicked, and accounts of them but as the dull; of the balance, or 
as the drop of the bucket. He can do whatfoever he will, and 
evil men can but do what he pleafeth. 

In Wifdom they cannot, for he excels in wifdom, knows ( in 
refped of extenfion, and in refpeft of diftinclion ) far beyond 
man, every thing, and in thecxafteft manner ; fees all the pro- 
jects, fnares, traps, devices , and takes the crafty in their 0^ 
craftincife, and catcheth them in their own fnares. Now God 
|)ath ingaged Himfelf, and all his Glory, and all his Attributes 
to his people. Should we fear the mighty man , when yet we 
have the Almighty God ? weak man, having a Strong God ? 
mortal man,having an Immortal God ? foolilh man,havir 
Wife God, &c. 

B b 4. The j 

1 86 Tea^ though Itvalk,8tc. Ver.^ 

They have 4. They have much clearnejfe in confeience ; and integrity 

much clcarnefs m conference breeds audacity in confeience. Wicked men fear 
an confeience. ^^ n0 f ear ati ma ny times the fhaking leaf doth (bake them, 
and a found of dreadful terror is in their cares ; their own (ha- 
dows, the (hadovv offhadows, their inward fancies are fufficient 
to diftrefle and amaze them. Guilt is on their conferences, and 
much guilt breeds much fear. Cain can reft no where, and ?#- 
das is altogether unquiet 5 a wicked man is afraid of every man, 
and of every place. And let dangers , real dangers prefent 
themfelves to any wicked man(as death, frowns of great perfons 
arraignments) Why 1 he is prefently at deaths door. Dan- 
v - ger no fooner falls on him without, but many fins rife up and 
wound him within, fothatbehath no hope and confidencein 
God, or man, or himfelf. But Integrity begets confidence ; 
The Wicked fieeth when no man perfueth him , but the righteous 
are us bold as a Lion, faid Salomon. The fearful Hare quatch- 
cth at every noife, but the ftout Lion lies unmoved at the great- 
eft clamors. 

Confeience maintained by uprightnefle, will be as Noah's 
Ark againft waves. Heze^iah found it fo when the fate nee of 
death was brought unto him , and David in the cafe of Saul 9 
and Paul under his Trials* We have little caufe to fear dan- 
gers when we have anexcufing confeience, and a never forfak- 
They have , 5. They have Faith in them , and can live by faith : The 
VmhinGod tjufi Jba/l live by his Faith, faid the Prophet, Uabi.%. He 
f? d M f an r^ c . .fpeaks of the Babyloni/h Captivity , and the dangers by it- at 
sfcc isteo ¥& w |jj c h t } me the Juft or righteous (hould live,but how ? by Faith, 
^___^ by trufting on God. Now Faith,efpecially(the living by Faith) 
fets us out of all dangers, and compofeth all fears. The weak 
►ney in the Rock, and Bird intheNefk, andChriftianinhis 
God, are fafe. Thou holdefi me by the hand, faid David : Let 
"the dangers be like the waves , yet Faith fets us on a rock 
that's higher then they ; Let them break in on us like a ftorm 
of hail,yet Faith can find a San&uary and a Shelter ; The Name 
efthe Lord is a (trong Tower, the righteous run thtreto and are 
fafe. Let the dangers be never fo many, yet Faith opens our 
eyes (as the Prophets fervants were opened) to fee more with 
b$- then againft us, God, and Chrift , and Angels, &c. If we 


Ver.4' Tcafhottgh I tvalk^c. i 87 

could fee God, the Almighty God j 1. Engaging himfelf , 
2. Himfelf working for us, we would not fear • but Faith fceth 
him as Ours, and likcwife confidently refts upon his active pro- 
vidence, ordering, reftraining, preferving, difpcfing of all for 
our beft fafety. As when J. (bit* knew that be who fltodby 
him with his [word drawn was a (faptain of the Lcrd of Hoflsxh, 
5.14. this did hearten him. 

6.La(tly,They may be fearlefs notwithstanding all dangcrs,for Their danger* 
as much as thofe dangers fiall never do them hurt but good : And foall never do 
irhonhethat will harme you if ye be follower $ of t hat which is ***■■ klW 6w 
good} 1 Pet.?. 13. Ail things, (aid the Apoftle (who particu-& c ' 

larly h:A fpoken of dangers before) fh.ill wr,\ together for^titd 

unto tlem that love God, Rom. 8. 28. The ftorms do turn over " 

and fink other (hips, yet t^e Chip of the Church is only carried 
more fteddily and more fpeedily by them : Their Graces, their 
Frayers,their Conventions, their Strcngth,their Comforts ne- 

ver abound more then under dangers. Let the dangers come 
r.cver \o clofe, yet rhey are fure to get by them. Wicked men 
tear (heir bodies, bat God will preferve their fouls- wickecf 
men confifcate their goods , tut God fupplies their comforts - 
wicked men banifn them this life, but God will give them a 
better. What man needs to be afraid of any thing, which 
will make h<m better, or make him happier ? 

Now for fome Application of this to our felves. Are righ- ~jr c 
teous perfons fearlefle in times of danger, (.i) Not overwhelm- 
ed with dejedions, notloofing confidence and hopes ? Then, us jf V3U wcu j ( j 
ever you dt fire to find courage and confidence in times of dir.gcr , finJ cr fid ence 
flrive to be righteous in times of prosperity. It v- an ill thing 8a times ot 
when deluges are flying in. that either we muft have no Ark, or **£J er > ^ rive 
an Ark yet to make. If great loiTes (hould befal you injour £ amStf 
relations, or in your conditions, miferies fhould bre.-k m. orr, j^[\iy. 
('which cannot be avoided) death ftiould prefer, t it felf, I aff 

you that an unrighteous perfon would find .; (harp work" and ^ 

time of thefe, He may fwagger, and fvvear, and vaunt riQw^as 
Gaal did over Afimilec'\ being anient, f»dg. 9 but when ..'- 
bimilech prefented himfelf with an army,then zsZtbul to Cj^al y 
whtre is noVrthy mouth wherewith thcufatdft y tVho is Ahimileth 
that we fh:uld ferve him } Is >;ot this the people whom thou baf 
defpifed ? That you fliall find in unrighteous men in their prd- 

Bbi fpc- 


i88 Tea, though I Vcqk, &c. Vcr.4, 

Lericy, nothing but mfolency and dcrifions of dangers, in times 
^danger, nothing but quakings of conference, and like Nabal, 
xhZi? hearts finkjikg a ft one within them : The [innsrs fhzll not 
ft and in Judgment : They are driven as the ftubble before the 
wind, and as drofle are they confumed. When dangers and 
troubles befal them, their confeiences alfo rife againft them, and 
Cod alfo beholds them afar off. But righteoufnefle takes off 
guilt , quiets confeience, yields confidence towards God , finds 
all the cities of Refuge let open in the times of trouble. It is 
our Breft-plate in Profperity, and our Target in Ad verfity . In 
a good day it is our Sun, in an evil day itis our Shield ; it is the 
Daughter of Grace, the Mother of Peace, anchors Hope, quick- 
ens Faith, injoyes God, and fears no evil. 
-,. $jiohit'*2r Being rigbteout, then beinduftrious to kjep out inordinate 
ous,bc lnduftri-7^> diffident, perplexing fears, though dangers do indeed be- 
cms to keep cuHfal you. It is a moit culpable error in any who profefTe good- 
inordinate «-**"*^ff e to be guilty of Levity, either in matter of doctrine ( that 
fears;. < — gy^ry wind thereof turnes them) or in appearance of danger 9 
that every cloud which arifeth (though it be but a fancy, but 
admit it were real)doth amaze, and hurry, and rout them. Af- 
furedly, either they did not look for dangers when they began 
_ to profefTe Piety , or if they did , yet when dangers approach 
they do not look to God. They forget that he is a God as 
well in the Vallies of Danger, as in the Mountains of Profpe- 
#ty. Their eyes are on men , fears of men, talk of men, how 
great, how cunning, how malicious, how implacable, and I fear 
their own contrivances,if rightly fearched into, more how to a- 
void then ftand under dangers. Let mefpeakfreelytoyou,AsStr- 
tid ily » s t0 <> dul a fin for a wife and fenfible Chriftian/o Tirnidi- 

tyjs too rafh and light a fin for a judicious and believing Chri- 

Tfoe danlcTin^"' There is more danger and hurt in it then you are 
giving way to aware, to give way to exorbitant fears in times of dan- 
exorbitant fears ger. 

. 1. The fm in it felf is high \ You will hardly believe the 

&if i/hib" 4&iy£ e fi* e °f lt > ^°^ muen Idolatry is in it , how much Infi- 

delttyis ink, how much DifohMence to God there is in it. 

~~Goa commands me not to fear man , but I do over fear him •, 

"ZjWsls expreffe Difabedience. Again, I fhould fear the Lord , 

£Els73b.not when I over fear man ; here's Infidelity. I muft 

'" ~ " * " not 

Ver.4. Tea though [twalk, &c. 1 89 

not make the creature a God, but this I do when ! exalt it fo 

high as to over-fear it. If J truft ou the power of tl 

ture as original for my good, this is HoUtrj* and fi ref- 

fear his power for my ev.l, is not this IdoLitrj too? 

2. It it cinfclefs, and there fort the wo* ft. A wicked manic iscsufl ."s/ 
heonely hath caufe to fear, but the righteous man who hath a 
God,aChriit, an holy Spirit, ail Heaven and Earth, effg 
ments of AllmightinefTe it felf, fpecial love from Cod, Gra 
Covenant, &c. and onely a few condemned creatures whom 
God abhorres, and hath threatned to break them in pieces with 
a rod of iron and to defpife their image, cj-c. u: quid time- 


3. And thecau r e of many a fin, many an irregular acl: : Jn-Ic is the caue 
ordinate fear,(look on it in no mean perfons for rightcou fneftj Gt msn "/ a "*• 
you (hall fee it hath engendred many ill effects, the fear of man 
is a fnarcunto him. Abraham was afraid of men, and twic e it 

made him lit, and expefe the chaflity of his wife. The like effect , , 

in lfaac : David he is overcome with fears, and furely he fhaU 

one day perifh. What fins ran out of this fear befides giving 
Gods promife the lie (which he excufed by faying it not in hi* 

hafte, Pfel. 116.) He firft tells a plain untruth to Ahimelech 

the Priefl I Sam 2 1 .2. The King hath commanded me a bufi~ 
ntfsficc* and by being relieved by Ahimelech occafionally it coft 
him the death of 85. perfons ^.18. which David chargeth up- 
on his own account, z>.22. and here it refts not but he runnes 
to zsfchijh tyx of Gath, and there with much hypocrifie and 
diAimulation carries the mattertoo, as you may fee 1 Sam.ij. 

$.io 9 &c. What (hall I fay more, we find it puts us on inor- _ 

dinatecourfes. You know whither Pctert inordinate fear of # 

man carried him, even to a treble denial oi his blefled Matter : 
I know him not,fwears he knows him not, begins to curie, to 
ule imprecations if he knew him. 

4. And very difco ifoifivc. When the fear of man pjreva I 
onus, you would not think what a chain it it oferourfpiitts^2?^* ,l * fC *' 
and abridgment to our lawful delights, or to the comfortable 
fruition of our felves ■ it hinders faith, diitrafts duty, quenclieih 
, we cannot ferve God with a quarter of that freedom and 
cheerfulncfs, but think, what if I fhouidlofemy liberty ruhar i 
if my children ? what, if my tlate [ crc. The Prophec 

7<?i Tea, though 1 walk % 3tc. Vcr4 

pares him that fears continually every dayT>ecaufe of the fury 
of the oppreflfor, to a captive Exile , a banljhtd man\mn un- 
known Countrey , who walks ( I warrant you ) very fadiy • 
Captivated man , one taken prifcner and laid in Gaol with 
bonds and in the dungeon, &c. It is a mifcrable life which is 
nothing clfe but a meditation of trouble, a fhip under every 
wind ; it makes our lives , our duties and walking fad and 
Whacmiywe heavy. 

do to prevent ok But what may we do to prevent overwhelming and di- 
*a 1S ? ' -I fturbing fears in times of danger > 

oKjodiaall So ^ I conjecture that thefe directions may be proper, vU. 

chc accribines of I • An exaltation of God in all the attributes oj his (fecial 

bis t'peclal pro- providence. If the (hip hath no anchor, or if that anchor can- 

videncc. - n ot feel the ground and fallen to it, no marvel if it floats up and 

down, and be ftrangely tolled with every wave. So if the foul 

have no faith, or if that faith do not fix on a God in time of 

trouble, it will then reel and ftagger and be driven with all 

winds and waves of fear. If we look onely on men, what they 

are, and not on God what he is ^ onely on men what they can 

do, and not on God what he can do-, our minds cannot but be 

unfetled and tolled with fears, for fear will prevail, unlefs the 

mind can difcover a greater ftrength to remove it, or to bear 

the evils feared. The Lord is on my fide I will not fear ( faith 

David, Pfal. 118.6) what man can do unto me -, and again, 

w .7. The Le^dta^eth my part with thtm that help we, therefore 

J fhall fee my defire upon them that hate me. Here was faith in 

David and fuch a faith as exalted God above man ; that though 

mendidhatehim and men did worK and ftir againft him, yet 

faith he / will wif**?* and why ? becaufe fuft, The Lord is en 

Thefc princi- my fide \ and fecondiy, The Lord tak/th my part. TheChri- 

plesmuftbeac-ftian muft lay down thefe particulars as infallible principles - y 

knowledge. Vl ^ 

S^fuffic- ! ' That q ° d is the AR "^4 clerit Goi and Supreme Lord, 
em God. jSPiLof Gods, and Lofid of Lords, he reigncth over all, and 

^C&ne is to be compared to him, or can do as he can do. 
Tbat his fr," — I, 2 - Th* t hu government of the world is no idle and loofe infpe- 
fcrnoum of tlJj mof things, but a diftinft* Watchful, acliveprovider.ce look- 
che world is j n g on, and ordering, and difpofingof all creatures in their con- 
waichful. -^■■ttrxions, iatencioHs, operations andpurpofes. 

I That 

Vcr.4. T"m, though I walk, &c. 1 90 

3. That as his love is more fpecial to his people th en 1 others, H 's love is 
fohis care over thim is more fmgular then towards othlrs* #f^° , r c c P :C J 3 * 
that^eepeth Ifrael dothneither (lumber nor fleep, Pfil. 1 ~ I 4- 3n j his'cire of 
Hiseyesare ever open towards the righteous, as to the Temple t |, (m fi n ;ulir. 
of Solomon, tindrttntco and fro through the earth, to fteVs bim- 
felf ftrong in the behalf of the upright, 2 Chron. 1 6.9. So t 
God having affumcd into a neer relation ur.to himfelf, He is 
neer to iuch three waves , 1. In the tendernejje oj his proviioce, 
(he keepech them as the apple of hueje • and Ire bears them Dcw.jj. 17. 
up as upon Eagles Wings, Dent 32.10. and underneath are the 
ever U [ling arms) and 2. in the greatneffe of his providence. ^2L 
He rides upon the Heaven in their help and in hx excellency on 
the skies. The eternal God is their re'uge-^ he is the fhicld of 
their hilp^and the frvord oj their excellency, and therefore all 
their enemies foall be found liars unto them, they (hall tread up' 
on their high-places v.26. and 29. And 3. in the perpetuity of ^j 
his provide nce-^he will never leave them nor forfakethem, bat ir/7/H:b.i $.$• 

be their Grd and guide to death.tf any Chriftian did know all ths 

and believe it, it would afluredly conquer inordinate Fears of 
men, or dangers by them. 

2. As God mult be exalted by faith , fo peace muft be m.tde Vtict mud be 
With G*d : for it is not the naked apprehenlion of the fuperio- ™ dc wi;h 
rir.y and greatneffe, and wifdom, and fidelity of God which re- 
moves fear ( nay thefc may afflicl us with more fear and flight, 
if all thefe fhould be as fo many Canons mounted on the bat- 
teries againfl us ) but there mult be an amicable apprehenlion of 
thefe (./♦) an apprehenlion of that God who is fo exalted a- 

boveall in power, to be our God, this God is our God our re- 
conciled God. If we be in an eltate of enmity with him, we 
can have no confidence nor adurance againft fears ; but if we 

be in an eftate of amity, that our fins are pardoned, enmityjs ^ 

flain all (lands right 'cwixtus and God, then we need not fear 
though the whole world be fhaken, and the mountains be call 
into the depths of the fea ; fee how the Scriptures cleertlu's 
Job 1 1. 14. If iniquity (this is the make-bate, the breach of 
the peace 'twixt us and God) be in thine hand (faid Zoph^r) 
put it fair aw.ty and Ut not Veickedneffe dwell in thy Tabernacles, 
Suppofe this be done, if we remove fin, will this remove fear ? 
V.15, Then /bait thou lift up tkj fxec without fpot y jea 9 ths* 

ic?2 Tea, though I walk,&c. Vcr.4. 

fbalt be fiedfaft and fbalt not fear. Whereas another perfon 
having peace yet to make with God, dares not to lift up his 
face to God, and if dangers come, he is unftedfaft ( .i ) unfetled, 
knows not what to do, what to think, where to fix, thou {halt 
then confidently look d on God, go to h m,be accepted, protect- 
ed, and thou (halt be lledfaft, thy heart (hall be fixed and pre- 
fer ved 5 and thou (halt not fear, ( i.) thcu (halt not bediftra- 
dted nor dejeded with fears of any evils. The like expreffion 
doth Eliphaz* the Temanite deliver, job 22.21. Acquaint thy 
felf with God and be at feace A thereby good Jball ccme unto ihttx 
What good ? v. 23. Thou fbalt be built up ( I, but evil men 
may quickly pull me down, they will attempt me perhaps fo, 
but ) v. 25. The Almighty him ft If Jball be thy -defence. 
v. 29. *s4na when men are caff down jh en fbalt thou fay fThere is 
a lifting up. V. 30. He Jball deliver the JJland of the innocent. 
Therefore if you would maintain your hearts againft prevailing 
fears, away with fin, put iniquity far from your Tabernacles. 
V pan all the glory fhall be a defence^ faid the Prophet If. 4. 5. 
Wickednefs is a (hame, and reproach , and difhonor . Get 
innocency, uprightneffe, be in covenant with God, make 
peace with him, then may you confidently apply your (elves 
unto him, and commit your felves unto him 3 and reft quiet from 
fear of evil: His truth then will be your fbield and buckler 9 
A foUd and cx- f 3 • ^ ft lid and exper mental perfVrafion of the goodnefs of the 
pcrimcntal caufe. This imboldens the heart much, and fubdues fears of 
perfwafion of men: a man may fuffer fometimes Impertinently, through a for- 
the joodneis warc j indifcretion, medling where he needs not : for matters 
o 1 e caufe. w j 1 j c j 1 ne j c h er his general nor particular calling will warrant, as 
zbufie-hdy in ether mens matters^ 1 Pet. 4 15. there is no com- 
fort in this •. J vftly for fome vile and bafe tranfgreffion. The 
hand of jufticemayfoe ftretched out againft a man for fins a- 
gainft God or man t or both ► and now he fuffers as an evil-doer, 
and hath juft caufe of repentance, and forrow, and (hame : For 
right ei .'ufnejfe fake ; For (Thrifts fake, for his truths fake ; and 
if a man hath not onely the profeffion of this, but the expe- 
.^jEignce of this, he hath before hand given up his heart, as well 
as his name to Chrift ; yea he hath experience of the excellent 
^^TjLof thefe truths, of the goodneffe of this righteoufnefs • 


Vcr.4. Tea .though 1 walk^Scc. 193 

confcience is perfwaded of them, firft by the teflimony of the 

word that they are no other then the very truths of God ; itrfEl 
fecondly by the influence of them on the heart, reforming th$^- 
heart more and more according to the word, and com- 
forting and eflablifhing the heart. I afTure you fuch a 
caufe of goodnefs known, not upon humane tradition, but be- 
lieved upon for divine authority, and fealed in theconfcienccf 
with the power and comfort of it, will put life and courage in 
a Chriftians heart, it being for the name of Chrift, for his truth, 
for his caufe ; Paul is ready not cnely to he found, but alfo to die 
at Hiewfalem. And therefore they that fuffer as Chriftians, 
the Apoftle (1 Pet.4.16.) bids them glorify God-, it is not a 
thing that they need to be afliamed of and fear, but to glory 
and rejoyce in : and wills them alfo in v. 19. to commit te 
keeping of their fouls to God in well doing as unto a faithful 
creator. They may put all they have into Gods hands, and he 
will fafely keep them and all of them • they need not to trou- 
ble themfelves. . 

4. A ricrhc conception of man would be of good ufe to a- ". B 5 0n " 

, ^ * ,. r c c j -j ■ n t ceptiomf man. 

bate our inordinate fears of dangers contrived againft us by 

man. Three things ferioufly conlidered would do ic, 

1. His vanity. He is but a vain thing , like a bladder that Of his vanity, 
fwells,but it is filled onely with wind, or like a dream builded 
up with flrange fancies, but one jogg awakens a man and all 
was but a fancy. True, as that weak creature and foolifh, did 
once put on the Lions skin, at the firft the beafts were arTraid t 
but when they efpied his ears, they were nothing difmaied. So 
evil menmayaiTume a kind of divinity s Pilat conceives he 
hath power to bind Chrift • and Haman to deftroy the ftVrn , 
and Tharaoh to imbondage Ifrael •, and fometimes they kt their 
mouths againft the Heavens, and fay, who is Lord over us ? and 
we will do what feems good in our eyes. NeverthelefTe ftudy 
man throughly, look not on his proud boaftings, but on bis in- 
trinfecal and real conftitution, he is a very weak, empty, una- 
ble thing. Sennacherib he will not leave a man in Jerusalem, 
and the Angel of God goes out, and in one night kil? 180 
thoufand of his army, and he is forced to remove his fiegc. The 
King (Iretchcdout his arm againft the Prophet who cried out 
againft the idolatrous Altar, but he could do nothing,'" *m 

C c Veithtr* 

IP4 ^ 4 3 th$ugh I walk^ &c. Ver. 4 

withered, he could not pluck it in again. Man is but a very Cy- 
pher of himfelf, He would he wife but is as the wild Affes Colt t 
and would be great and yet his habitation is ik the duft : a 
wicked foul he hath, and therefore weak; a body of clay, a 
frail matter i Vshat is man and wherein is hf to be acconnxed of? 
for the Scriptures do (hew him to be a very vain thing. 
Efcgcndcnc?. 2 Subordination: He is not of God but the workmanfhip 
of God, and is in his hand as clay in the hard of the Potter. 
Though he be full of wrath ("which is as fire) yet God can re- 
-J7 ffrain that wrath, as he did reftrain that fire from burning the 
K " ^^ ~tfire e Children. Though might be fometimes in his hand, yet 
— iTIFbut as in an hand ; if the head conferres not influence, the 
hand lofeth its might. You fee many wheels in a Clock, not 
one of them ftirres if the great wheel moves them not- all the 
power of man is under the great power of God. There is fuch 
natural and neceflary fubje&ion of man to God, that as he can, 
do no good without Gods affiftance, fo he can do no evil with- 
out Gods permiffion. As Bernard of the Devil, Nihil pot eft s 
nifi miff us vel permifftu. There are many devices in the heart of 
m an , but the counfelof the Lordit [hall fl and. Alithecon- 
foundings, and intanglings, and difappointments, and flops, 
and over-rulings of the plots and pra&ifes of wicked men in 
Scripture, (hew that they are under another, they are dragons 
in chains. 
Notability. i $.Mut ability :Mzn is a very Mcteor,a Vapour, but a Breaths 
he may devife many things, but in a moment he dies, is taken 
orT, and all his thoughts perifli • there is an end of him, and of 
all his proje&s. A wicked man is more mutable then another 
man-, though every man be under ^natural mutability and 
change yet the wicked are under a judicial mutability too. 
Not onely their nature but their wickednefsexpofesthemto a 
fhortnefs, therefore God mat y times cuts them off in th« midft 
of their dzys:(Vngodly men live not out half their days.)& takes 
them off with fome fudden curfe and judgment,as you may read 
of Pharach y and Haman, and Herod, and fulian,&C. Jfa.2.22. 
Ceafe from man whofe breath is in his noftrils^ for wherein it 
, he to b e accounted of > A good Argument and Motive not to 
JJE ttle our hope on on? who i« but a breath. And the fame 
"Tfrophet ufeth the fame argument not to fear him,/fa 1.12. *?*• 
-** art 

Ver.4« Tea f bough I tvalk^c. \ 9 5 

art thou that thou Jhouldft be afraid •/ a man that flail die ? 
and of the [on of man whefi ill b< made as gr 

5. An intimate dijudication of dsMfenJ tbtmfttoes. We ufc Ar InttoM 
to conftrain fearful horfcs to c 1 m e c \ the p!ai.e* or bufiics which Jj u lic * ton 
make them fear and ftm, and many times this helps that ill * * 

quality in t em. \i Christians would habituate and accurtome 

their thoughts to look upon Rod petttic thofe things which wg 

call evils and dangers, they would lefle fear them. When we 
mif-apprehend chinas we are apt to over-apprehe.id them, and 
ignorance is not on? of theleaftcaufis of fear, Now i n pro- 
fpcrity and liberty confider , why 1 what is it for an evil ifj 
fhould lofe an houfe ? an eftate ? a life for Chrift ? What if 
men fhould frown on me ? defpife me ? revile me ? sfflfdme ? 
Are any outward things the chief of things? Can their pre- 
fence make me happy? how then can their abfence make mc 
miferable ? W T ith all thefe I mult of nece/lity pare one day^_Ji. 
it not more honorable to part wi:h them upon good termes, 
thenoncornpullive. Chrift did forgo more for me thenjjzarj^ 
for him - y and what is it wherein man can hurt me ? This body 
he may, my eftate he may, my liberty he may, my foul he can- 

not touch (that's above all his malice) nay and what canljjj£. 

fer in my body, which God cannot now make up with ftrength, 
and comfort? or will not hereafter reward with a gloriousiR^^ 
mortality ? What though man curfeth, as long as God b!efleth>_-— 
though he wounds, as long as God comforts ? though he jjgr, — 
fpoils, whiles God fupplies me? he forfakes me : Thoughjie 
frowns on me, whiles God fticks to mc ? while God fmiles^ on 
me? though he thrufts me out of earth, when Chrift ha tHpre* _^ ^ 
pared a manfion forme in Heaven. 

6. Fetr cf fin is another good help againft inordinate fear Fear of fin. 
of danger , you know the old diftin&ion of malum ]fulp* and 
malum fcenefwtfvX evil, and forrowful evil. Sin is the firft evil 
and the greareft evil, and indeed (in :s the onely evil. Nothing 

makes us evil and miferable but fin, mifenes do not. Now if 

we did look And judge of fin as the maximum formidable, as 
that which l-ath in it the moft proper caufe of fear and flight , 

external miseries and dangers would not make fo deep an im- _, 

predion Outward dangers and mtferies, they do not , 

r Difrimere /latum : your condition is never the worfe : 

Cci the 

196 Tea, though I Vr* t k, &c. Vcr.4. 

the gold is as good and pure when it is in the fire as when it is in 
the coffer. 

'Diminueretitulum : you ftand in as neerand firm relation 
and as dear unto God, and he owns you with as paternal affe- 
ctions as if your conditions were exempted. 

Avocare auxilium : for though our friends dare not, or wilt 
not accompany us in dangers, but as S. Paul complained all 
forfook^ me, yet God flood by me , faid he, he will own our per- 
fohs and fafeties when we own his caufe and truths. 

Sufocare *SV<*w£»,ftirleany neceffary and proper influence 
of Comfort. Though we have not the light of the Sun yet 
we (hall have the light of Gods countenance : though we hear 
not the lips of peace by man, yet we (hall hear the voice of 
peace in our confciences. 

tAnnihilare Tr&mium : The Reward is not the lefs, nor 
the lefs certain for our perfons, becaufeof dangers incident to 
our bodies. It maybe mans pleafure to give us trouble, but it 
is Gods pleafure to give us a Kingdom. // we futfer with 
Chrift, we /ball reign with him, faid the Apoftle, 2 Tim. 1.121 

Thus far of David's couragious refolution (/ will fear m 

evil.) Now I proceed to the ground of it (For thou art 

with me.) Whence a third Propofition doth refult, viz, 

Do£tr.$. That God is prefent with his people in all their dangers 

GodispreCent and troubles, and that pretence of his t is the vround of 

?l£? ' thelrco4dence ' 

is the ground Thou"] A God, my God*. *Arf\ not onely haft or wilt, 
of their confi- but art : With me ] not onely with others but with me. 
^ ence ' You will perceive that there are twa Branches of this Af- 

' , . fertion . 
TwoBranches. ^ Jhat Godis prefent withhisin all their dangers; 

Gd is prefent 2 * ^ v * ne prefence is the ground of Chriftian confi- 

wiVhVinaU dence. 

dangers. i. For the firit of thefe , The Scripture is fo copious and 

To Abraham, apt, as fcarce in any Article the hkc, Deut.31.6. The L *d thy 
l^A^Z^ God he it is that doth goVeiththee. If.43.2. when thou paffeft 
fromEflu, ^oHgbthe^atersJ^illbewUhthtt^Q. lf.41.lO.' Fear M 
ii^PNtt.fol* m <'Mlb *het 9 fa hop difmayed^ for I am thy G§d. 

'*" The 

Ver.4» For thou Art rvithmc, &C 1 91 

The Aflertion requires fome explication. 

jQueft. i . What this prefence of God with his people in their P :c " 

dangers and troubles is J»* j* God , { 

Jo/. Some dnUnguifh thus, there is a fourfold prefence ofJJ t hctr Sai^- 

God: &crs i,. 

i . One is T^atural : And thus is he prefent with all Crca- A few f I ! pre- 
turcs : rvri-her fi*& I flee from thy frefence} Pfal.i 59 7. That e ' C: - ° : - 
Philofopher faid well, That God wis a Sphere wbofe Center pros** 111 

every where , ar.d his Circumference no where : And to the fame 
purpofe l.kewife S. chryf<fiom , in Colof 2. Nafattam f /^ tlonn 5. 
'Ditts & ubiqtte eft* Included in no phice,and excluded from no 
place, faith another. Not that the Divine Effence is mulci;' - 
ed as creatures multiply, for Infinitenefie cannot multiply , nor 
can Perfection multiply ■ nor that the Divine Efterce is ming- 
led with other things, for abfolute purity is not capable of any 
mixtion : Nor that it is an Accident in the Subject , as white- 
nefife is prefent to thewootl, butasan aniverfal principal and 
caufe is prefent with its effects for Production and Confervation, 
fo is God prefent with all the Creatures. Prefent with them , 
1. Via prodftcltGnis, by railing them up. 2. Via fuftentatumis % 
by ftaymgofthemup. 3. Via inclinations ^by giving unto them 
power of motion. 4. Via ebfervationv\ by taking notice of 
them. 5. Via ordinationis, by governing and ruling of them and 
their ads to the fervice of his glory. 

2. A fecond is M*]e[tical\ And thus is he faid to be prefent in . . 
heaven ; and we pray to him as cur Father which it m heaven ; 
not that heaven is circulns concludcns , a place wherein God is 
fhutup.but ^PaI n'mm refp/endens, the Court (as it were) where 
his Majefty in ads of VVifdom , and Power, and Mercy, and 
conjunction of Grace and Glory, doth moil: of ail appear. As 
the Soul of man though it be in every part of nun, yet it doth 
princpilly appear and manifeft it felf in the heart and brain-, 
So, fee. 

3. A third is his Judicial prefence : And thus is he prefent 1^1^ . 
with ungodly men, by a particular obfervation of their perfons 
and wayes, and by a fpecial detection of them ; and by his fe- 
rcre comination of them , and alio by a certain deftrudion of 
them if they repent not. 

4., A fourth is his Gracious or Favourable prefence: And 


jp8 F$r thou art mth mc % Stc. Vcr^. 

thus God is prefent with his people at all times, infeparabi/iter ■ 
and in dangerous times f«w*»f»rer, after a more lingular manner* 
as the parents are with the children (alwayes) by a t t as rare* 
but in their ficknefTe, then with a moft tender companion! 
Therefore righteous perfons are faid to be the T tuples ill which 
the Lord doth dwell , and the Go/dex Cavdlcfticl^s amongft 
which he doth walk • and the Hmfe of the Living god. Now 
rhis gracious prefence is iz of which we are to lpeak, and it is 
nothing elfe but (as it were) the Exerting the Divine Nature in 
all the Attributes for the good of righteous perfons. When all 
thofe gloriousAttnbutes of God do(as it were, p^ch ?hsir tents 
roundabout us ,andexprefs their virtues in a gracious manner for 
our beft weal. His Wifdom to dire&,his Power to protect Mer- 
cy to comfort them, Goodneffe to fupply them. 

Gods gracious The which gracious prefence, is either, 

preGnceis, Interval, Refpe&ing the foul and confcience in our fpiritual 

[UCina # condition. 

External. External, Refpe&ing the body and cftate in our temporal 

condition. Though it be true that God is prefent to the fouls 
of his people in all their exigences, yet the afTertion is only in- 
tended of that gracious prefence which is converfant about their 
bodies ;n external dangers. This external prefence may be di- 
vided into, i . Real, or z Se*.(ible preience • in the one God is 
prefent with us , but we may fay as Jacob , The Lord is in this 
flace and I k*iw it not. In the orher he is with us and we be- 
hold his Arm, as fofbjta the Angel of the Lord to be on his fide 
againft the enemies of him and Ifrael. It is granted that many 
times God dotb not feem (efpeciaily if fenfe be judge, which 
cannot fee any prefence of God but in a fair day ; weak eyes 
cannot fee fo well in the dusk) to be prefent with his people • 
If the Lord be with us t wh hath all this evil befallen us} faid 
Gideon, Judg.j. Yet really in the effeds of his providence 

^hh?s6 (* 0l, .g n notalwaies-fenfibly totheiropinionjheisprefentwith 

JJaiejf * them in their gseateft danger and extremities. 

Vifi{mnio. I- Dijpon-vL; By difroiin^ofa 11 miferable evils , fothat 

not one hair of then heads (Tu: 11 fall to the ground without his 
providence, Mat. 10. 9. As every Mercy is a Drop from the 
hand of his goodneffe, fo every Calamity is a Dram weighed 
out by the skill of his providence. 

2. Com- 


Ver.4- For tbon art with mc^ &c. \99 

2. Component • By compofing of their Spirtts,ficcmg them Comp§ncnio. 
with hearts to bear the Crofle , paflive -^nd patient abilities • 

for as God gives unto his people a&ive hearts to believe and 
do his will,fo alio he gives them paflive hearts to fuffcr his will, 
Phil. 1. 19. 

3 . Corrobortxdo ., By (lengthening their weaknefTe , for ofCcrrolounh. 
all duties we are moft infufficient to thofe which are paflive ^ 

we are weak in all, but moftweak (ofourfelves) in thefe.Ifa. 
41.IO. Fearnotjor J ant with thee, 1 am thy Get), I rvill ftrength- 
en thee. Ver.14. Fear not thou Worm faob. He encourage 
eth Paul, Ad:. 2 3. 1 1. The Lord flood by bim^andfaid, Be ofgo^d. 
chear 'Paul, &c. And therefore the Lord will moft of all (he"* 
his power (at thefe times) in our weaknefTe • and hence it is 
(I think,) that our Graces become more ftrong to work,and our 
hearts are filled with moft inward comforts in the times of fuf- 
fering, becaufc God knowing our weaknefTe , is pleafed to add 
his ownftrength and comfort to uphold us. 

4. Limitando; By reftraining dangerous evils menaced by Limitind$. 
evil men, bridling and checking the fury and infolency of them. 

The remainder of Wrath /ball he reftra>», as he did in Antiochus 
Epiphanesng&inft: the Jews, by Mattathias and his fons; and 
in Licinius 9 and Maxentins, and Maximinus (if I forget not ) 
by Conflantin, and by his Angel againft Senacherib. 

j. L{berando\ By giving a good iffueout of all troubles. Ulcmit. 
Ttoo Wings were given to the Church •, and as in 1 Cor. 1 o. 1 3 . 
which alludes unto T*avid being delivered from Saul. Though 
Saul hemmed him roundabout •, and fo by delivering Peter 
outofprifonnd from death, againft the cruel expectations of 
He vAind the Jews. And Chriji before that from Herods ploc 
to kill him • as he did the Jcwsfalfo before that) from H*ma>is 
wicked device for all their ruine. Inftances abound in this kind 
of Gods pre r ence with his'people in times or" dangers. Neah*9 
Ark for him againft the common delugo, Afofes's Ark of bul- 
rufhes taken up by "Pharaohs daughter, Dovid atfeveral times 
in the cafe of Saul and *s4bfalom, Jonas in che Whales be! he, 
and in the depths, yet fct on dry land • our own prefervation of 
this Kingdom in 88. and the 5 th of November, Exod 6.1. Nor* 
/bait thou fee what I Will d<\ &c. 

6. TStntdktndo j Performing all the good which he hath BencJiccnfa . 


200 ForthoHArtmthme&c* Vcr.4» 

promifed, notwithstanding all dangers and oppofitions, turning * 
ail to good, as that offofephs brethren,&c. 
Why is the ' J£*cft.2. But why is the Lord thus fingularly prefcntwith 

Kfwefent. hJS P^ in thcir g reateft dan § efS? 

His Covenant Sol. I , His Covenant is fo, To be with them for ever. I will 

is to be with never leave thee nor for fake thee, Heb. 13.5. that's a branch of 
them for ever, the Covenant. And though his people be in the waters and in 
the fires, yet his promifeis to be with them. As when God 
faid, He will be our exceeding great reward , this is a branch of 
the Covenant for our good for ever : So when he faid, That 
he Will be cur fbiett , this is another branch of the Covenant a- 
gainft any evil incident to us for ever. 
His pecple need 2. His people need his pre fence mo ft in times of danger. When 
his prefence doth a man need a brother or a friend, but in the day of adver- 
moft in times (ity ? When wants, troubles, diftreffes, fickriefles come , then 
of danger. . § t ^ e t - me ^^ we neec | tnc counfel, the help, the comfort of a 
friend. When calamities and dangers break in, and all are fet 
a gainft them, then is the Time , the time for God to work and 
help, and the time when the people of God moft need his fuc- 
cour and help ; This is the day of Sal vation, &c. . 
God is a Mth- 3* AsGod is & Kind friend, lo he is a Faithful friend; a 
ful Friend. friend loves at all times , faid Solomon 1 God is fuch a friend 
who loves not by fits and ftarts , but fincerely and ftedfaftly •, 
and therefore though Davids friends fall off,and parents for foo^ 
/»w, yet God did not, he took^him up,Vk\.zj.\o. And though 
When Paul was brought before Nerc y allmenforfoo\^himjetxhe 
Lord flood with him and ftrennhened him, 2 Tim. 4. 16,17; 
There be thefe three Qualities of a right Friend, 1. Affetlion^ 
2. Bounty , ^.Conftancy, as in Jonathan to David. Carnal 
friends (commonly) are like the Doves, which neft only in fair 
buildings ; or like Jobs brookj^ which fail in time of drought ; 
we have them moft when we need them lead, Troubles and 
dangers are like Solomons whifperers y they feparate very friends. 
But the Apoftle Paul is confident that neither famine, nor na» 
kfdneffe, nor peril, ncr [word, nor life, nor death {ball ever be a* 
ble tofeparale us from the love of God in Chrift, Rom.8. 
Now his peo- 4. Now his people, 1. Seek him moft, and 2. Rely on him 

pie feck hi;n mo ft. 

moft and rely - jy § - § ft t j mc wnere j n if God WOrks all , tis hisown; 

whim, - ' fo 

Ver.4- Fort lw art wit time, Sec. 201 

fo it is acknowledged, Stand ftill and behold the Salvation of The fecond ^ 
the Lord branch chuchis 

' The firft life (hall be for Comfort unto Righteous perfons iJjJ^SJrf. 
whatever their troubles or dangers are, here is encouragement „efi,willfallta 
enough unto them, j^(W« With them. In Mat. 1.21,2$. yc in the life. 
find two names given unto Chrifr, one is J^/f^another is Ema- Vfe 1 
nuel and indeed conjoyn thefe two and there is comfort e- P°r Comfort 
nough, a Saviour, and God with ns. SS^Ja 

But the comforts from Gods prefence are thefe, „ cr [hci: j in , 

1. If God be with righteous perfons, then nothing i* againft 6 ers be. 
t'*tm bat weaknejfe h weak children befieging a wail of Brafle : Five Camfcrts 
We imagin fuch extreme powers to be fet up againft the people ]i God ** m fl 
of God, but there is no fuch thing, for no people in the world *{■» JgSS 
have fuch power on their fide as good people , for God is with cheu * buc wca ^, 
them ^ more with them then againft them , if the eyes of Faith neilc. 

were opened : only a few, weak, gafping creature* for life, who 
may be inftantly cruihed into nothing,none but thefe are ag unit 

2. None can be againft them bat they muft be againft God him* None can be a*» 
/elf: For God is with them- with them as a father with his gainft then, 
children, and as an husband with his wife, and as a confederate *? u: chc y I ? uifc 
with his alliance- offensively with them , and defenfively Withjj^j| 
them , and therefore evil men who vex and wrong them, are 

faid in this to fight againft Gcd y Act.5.39. and to kjck^ againft 
thepric\s,\&.9- Dangers are near, fo is God- Great, the 
Greater God is near ; Storms, but an Houfe^ Arrows, but a 
Shield ■ \Vaves,but a Rock. 

3, There can be nothing done againft them : If God be with There can be 
HS^hocanbe againft us, faith the Apoftle, /W.8.3 I ? Why ? nochinj done 
will you fay, that will all the Divels in hell, and that will all 3 * ainft thcm ' 
wicked men, but Ridendus eft furor inams , they are as no- 
thing, and can do nothing againft us -, therefore Aquinxt well 
expounds that ®uis contra nos ? (.i.) Guis effcacitcr} and o- 
thers, Qui* lot five & prevalent er} who can can be againft us 
fo as to hurt us > If it be of God ye cannot overthrow x'r, faid Ga* 
mali'l, Ad. 5. 39. What if all the world fliould drive to hin- 
der the Sun from rifing or fhining f Or like thofePigme's, 
which went with their arrows and bowes to reprels the flowing 
of the Sea : Ludib;ious acts, and meer follies. 

D d 4. All 


For thou art with rne^ &c, 


All that is 

plocwd agiinft 
them Hull pc- 

Conner the 
Qualities ot 
his prefence 
with us. 


Fruitful, . 

4. All that is plotted and done againft the righteous fball pe~ 
rifb* The counfelfhall come to nought that is taken and the 
word that is fpoken fhall not ft and , for God is with us, Ifa.8.10. 
The weapon may be formed, but it fall not profper againft them , 
7/4.54 17. Their enemies fly all be fund liars % Deut. 33.25. 
He maketh the devices of the people of no*e effe3 P i a 1 . 3 3 . 10 For 
all thefe attempts be but the works of men, of evil men , and 
therefore (hall come to nought, €^#.5.38. 

5. Confider the qualities of his prefence w'nhyou, and it may 
yield you lingular comfort and fupport. It is not malitiofa pre- 
fentia, as Sauls with David - nor otiofa , like the Egyptian to 
thelfraelites; but, 

1. It is Gratiofa , the prefence of a Loving 

2. It is Gloriofa , the prefence of an Almighty 

3. It is VruBmfa, the prefence of an AcliveGod, 
who will be a Defence to you, a Shield to you, a Sun to you, a 
Salvation to you. None can withftand him, much lefte prevail 
over him. All the world cannot alter, nor hinder, nor conquer 
his love, and care, and intentions towards you. Be your con- 
dition what it will, you may chear up that yet your God is with 
you. Can you want comfort when the God of all Confolati- 
on is with you ? Can you want Mercies , when as the Father 
of Mercies is with you > Can you want Grace , when as the 
God ©fall Grace is with you ? Can you want Strength, when 
as the God of all power is with you ? Can you want Counfel , 
when the God of Wifdom is with you > Can you want Friends, 
when as the God of all Love and Kindnefle is with you ? Can 
you want fafety, when as the God of all the World, and whom 
all mud ferve is with you ? Can you want any thing, when as 
the God of All»fufficiency is with you f If a friend comes to 
thee , this will chear thee up a littjc in thy diftreiTes, how much 
more fhould this, that God is with thee ? The little child is 
quiet, though upon the Seas , when the mother holds it in the 
arms •, and why is the Chriftian no more fetled, who hath God 
with him , ftill holding of him up by the right hand of his. 
power > 

Let this fuffice for all , you are never left alone, the belt pre- 

Ver.4» For tbon art with w^&c. 203 

fence is ftill yours, the greateft prefence is ftill yours, the hap- 
pieft prefence is ftill yours, the prefence of htm who makes 
your heaven and happincfle up hereafter , is yours; yours 
now, and therefore, now, let it make comfort and confidence on 

In the fecond place,fee two things in the wicked enemies of the Vfe 1 
people of God, Seeintliewklr 

1. Their CMAxefie : They devife and pradiceagainft the^ ^"^ 
Generation of Gods favour and care, as if a Rebel could medle 1 qJ^ 
with none but the children of a King. Their wits, and mouths, jv 1{ir ^anefs 
and hands are lifted up only againft them with whom God is in 

a fpecial manner prefent in his arTe&ion and protection. They 
m.tgin a vain thing - 5 Why, will they not confider,that Ha/am 
prophecied of old, Ho\K>fl}*ll I curfe^whom qodhathnotctrf- 
ed? and how (hall I defie, whom the Lord hath not defied ? 
Their rage againft God and his people is endlefs, but becaufe ic 
is againft God, it (hall be fruitlcfs. 

2. Their juj} occtfton of Sad>.ejfe : The Lord is with his peo- Their jnfl 
pie, what's that? that is for his people: he is not then withcaiionof .r 
the wicked ^ if not with them, then wo unto them ^ then he is «&• 
againft them, and then their defence is departed from them • if 

they have noGod with them, they can have noShield with them, 
they cannot profper, they (hall come to ruine. He is with his 
people in their Worft times, and not with his enemies at their 
Beft times, but is ftill againft them. Mercy againft them, Pow- 
er againft them , Juftice againft them. God is againft them 
and that in fierce wrath, and all the Creatures be agamft them, 
and all their own confeiences are againft them. If the Lord 
once awaken to the Judgment, and to recom pence vengeance 
to his adverfaries , he will bathe his fword in blood , and drive 
them as the fmaller duft before the tempeft. 

In the third place, fincc the Lord is prefent with his people in 
their greateft dangers and diftreiTes , we may hereupon be T*- Ioftrudica in 
ftruRedtO fevcral duties, to :rai duties. 

1 . To order our f elves fo , as that vet may find Cjods gradou* OMcr out 
prefence With us in the times of our dtftreffes , or (hadows of fehrcs 10 u 
death. Two things here take into your conlideration, wc ma y ^ :lJ 

1. Motives to afTeft you to this duty, Gj : :s & r:cic u l!S 

2. Means or manner how to be fo. r 

D d 2 The ' 


For thou art^ithme, &c. Vcr.4/ 

Motives to it. 
VVc know not 
how foon di- 
ft re Acs may 

befal us. 

The CMotives are thefe : 
I . We do not know how fuddenly diflreffes and dangers may 
befal us : J [aid in my fr*) r ferity^ faid David, Pfal 30 6. 1 fhall 
not be moved. Very. Thou ball made my mountain to fland 
ftrong,th§u dtdfl hide thy face and I was troubled. See how. 
quickly dayes ofDifirejfe did follow the times of Sxceffe , as 
clofe as the fhadow doth the body, as faft as one word can fol- 
low another, as foon as he mentions his profperouseftate,pre- 
fently he complains of a difrrefled and troublous eftate : Invi- 
cem cedunt dolor & voluntas. Thus was it with Htz>tkiab, he. 
is no fooner freed from a malicious death , that ruine which Se~ 
nacberib threatned, but he is arretted with a natural death, he is 
fummoned by Cod to fet his houfe in order , for he muft not 
1 ive but die. Our outward mercies may in fome fort be com- 
pared to Pharaohs hoft, we may fee them all complete this hour 
and alive, but the next hour all drowned and covered with wa- 
ters. The husband may prefently dieor fall lick, and the chili 
be ready for the grave, and wealth take the wings of the morn- 
ing, and friends fall off, and defertions, loffes, fickneffes,deaths r 
all forts of calamities befal us , all help failed, all props remo- 
ved. Therefore order it fo that you may have God prefenc. 
with you. 

2. T^ordo we know h 0^0 great and tedious the dimneffe and the. 
diflreffes may be : Perhaps the evils which we fear may befal us y 
and the knot which is tied with the ftrongeft affections may be 
cut afunder- that only which thine eyes look upon more then 
all the creatures befides, {hall be rent from thee, and thou fhalt 
not be able with all tbyaffe&ions, with all thy helps, with all 
thy tears to with-hold it from God. Perhaps fuch ev.lsmay 
befal us, as if God be not with us, none willbe with us. Nay t 
perhaps the .evils may feize immediately upon thine own, 
perfon , thou maift be the man whom extreme ficknefle 
or irreversible death may fummon to appear before God», 
3. *s4t fuch times you will certainly need the prefence of God t 
Attach times tn ^ P r efence of his ftrength, and the prefence of his favour. We 
we (hall cer- aw not i s • mor e able, 2.but lefs able for paffives then a&ives 5 
Ealnly need the for at fuch times, 

ffcfcocc o£God Our A jf eft ions are apt to be mo(t impatient jwas it not fo with 
pb f 

Our, Fears are apt to be weft violent l . was it no fo with Peter ? 

how great the 
difaeffes may 

Ver.4. For thou art with me, &c. 2C 5 

Our unbeliefs are apt to be mrfl turbahn -,was it not io with 
David ? / ft -ill one day peri ft ^ oti. 

Our consciences are apt to be mofi Unquiet. Troubles are 
many times like Phyfiek which ftirs the humours, and fetch 
up cloferand perhaps forgotten tranfgreilions • was it not fo 
with fofepk's brethren > 

And Satan it mnft ready to fijh in troubled waters : as the fons 
offac.b fell upon the Shechemites when they were fore, fo 
Satan fa Us heavieft when either our confciences are troubled or 
our diltrelTes are multiplied. 

Now if all this befall us and the Lord be not with us, what 
ftrange work (hall we make of it? what was Samfon when the 
Lord lefthim?whatisthe (hip left alone? we can neither bear our 
diftrefles, nor free ourfelves from them, neither fubmit nor e- 
fcapc. When comforts are gone and miferies break in we (hall 
need a God to be our comfort , and a God to be our 

4. For the times of dijlrejfe there is no f re fence like the pre- In times of di- 
fince of a God : confider a few particulars for this : f^Vke Ihc 

Firft, Mif tries will not be miferies if God fie w himfelf pre- p < JJf eQel f 
fent \\>ith us. It is never night as long as the Sun (nines, and^i. 
who can complain of negleds, whom the King himfelf doth Miferies -.vi:! 
embrace and honor ? Thou (halt go away with miferies, as Sam-^^ miuri's 
fondid with the gates, and rejoice in trouble as the Apoftles:*/ Go&bz pie- 
where Gods gracious prefence is not, there onely ismifery , lent ' 
that's a very Hell • but where his gracious prefence is, there is 
Heaven • it alone is a blefled Heaven, and therefore no mifery 
is where it is. 

Secondly, his prefence will anfwer the prefence of all other 
comforts. Some dream of Manna that it had all forts of ]? rc l f\ m 
nites, as if all forts of meat were in it -, and we read in the p:cl - cn:c f s \[ 
Revelations of a tree that bare twelve manner of fruits Rev. other comforts. 
222. The Lord if he be prefentwith thee in thy diftrefTes and 
manifefts himfelf gracious unto thee, whatfoever thy diltrefles 
are, he can make all up in feveral comforts. He can be that to 
thee that a friend was, that an husband w.is, that a child was, 
that liberty was, that plenty was: the light of Cjods counte- 
nance was to David as much as all corn and wine, Pfal. 4. 

3 . His prefence will be better then the prefence of all cut ward 


2 o 6 F &r t^oti ttrt with me,3tc. Ver.4 

His prcfcncs comforts which fall off from us in our di ft refTes and dangers , 
will be better pfal.63. Better then life, as Elfyxah faid to his wife I Sam. I. 
thenthe prefcnceg r j ev j n g f or t h e want f chiidrcn, Am not 1 better to thee then 

comfons Un ! om ' So is the P refence of the Lord.it is better by far 
then all other things. One Sun is more glorious and comfort- 
able then ten thoufand (tars. What is the prefence of any 
thing if God be not prefent with it and thee f The creatures 
can be of no more comfort and help and ftrength unto thee, 
then God is pleafed to put into them. As the Lantnorn fhines 
by the light of the candle put into it, or as the Moon fhines out 
by the light which the Sun communicates unto it, fo the crea- 
tures guide and comfort according to the influence which God 
imprints into them •, now God who is the caufeof all their 
comfortablenefs muft therefore be a much more comfortable 
good , his love is much better then the love of a friend, his 
counlel much wifer, his power more ftrengthning , his prefence 
much more reviving and cherifhing. 
H s gracious 4. His graciom f re fence it enters into the very foal and con* 
drefrncc tMtxsfder.ee: AW diftrefTes are as theToul and confeience are- If they 
into the very b e deftit ute and forfaken,then a manisforfaken indeed, he is a 
fciencc. ^"" Torlo rn thing ^ if troubles come, and confeience be troubled 
"too__; if dangers increafe, and the foul be endangered too, this 
is fad. But if the foul and confeience be hail, if all be well fet 
"and kept within } now diftrefTes are but as waves that beat againft 
"a rock. If the Lord faith to the confeience, thy fins are par- 
doned, and I am thy God, thou art pretiousin mine eyes, I have 
accepted of thee in my Son, I will never leave thee nor forfake 
lee. This fuftains the fpirit of man, and then the fpirit of 
man will fuftain all infirmities. Paul now is encouraged and 

2. The Means or wayes how to order our felves fo that we 

The Means m ay find God prefent with us in our diftrefTes are two 
how to order ^j^ 

th« w/may ' T • ^ r '^*fM- Wc mult remove thofe things far from us 

find God pre- which will elfe remove Gods prefence fro m us, v.g. 
Cent. ^ i. We muft remove high tranfgrejjions from us. Great tranf- 

Prlvative. grefiions do eclipfe Gods honour and alfo eclipfe Gods favour: 
^ovTbish C " W ^ en ^ ere * s a kbcJlions prefence of fin, we fhall not find the 
tranf^ttlFions, gracious prefence of God ; in great tranfgreffions we turn the 



For thou art with we y &c. 207 

back unto him, and God turns away his face from us : fins may 
be high and grcar, cither in refped: of the matter of them, 
when they are grofle and foul ♦, or elfe in rcfpecT of the manner 
of them, when though the fins belittle in themfelves, ye: they 
arecommicted with an high hand, with more delight and deli- 
beration, and obftinacyof fpirit. Either of them are enough 
to put oft God from us (inrefpeft of a gracious prefence. ) 
David (you know ) committed two grofle fins for the matter pf a I, p. 
of them, and what was the iflfue ? why Gods prefence departed 
from him, both in refpeci of vigour and ftrength, as alfo in re- 
fped of peace and comfort. And fo the Ijraelites fell into 
grofle Idolatry, Exid.%2.8. They made them a golden Calf, 
and what followed this > I Veil I not go ftp in the midst of thee, 
(faidGodJ ch.33.3. Tor thou art a ftiff-neckjtd people, left I con' 
fume thee in the Vraj. The Lord would not be with them unlefs 
in a judicial and revenging way. 

2. We muft take heed of impenitency \*hen we have commit- Take heed of 
ted y?«/,orclfc theLord will not be with us. It is poflible im P eni:enc y' 
for a perfon or a nation to commit fome great fin, yet if they 
inftantly makeup the breach, take up the controverfie, humble 
and confefs and reform themfelves, the Lord may be intreated 
again to be prefent with him: as you know CMofes immediate- 
ly begins and profecutesthe fuit with God to pardon the Ifrae- 
Utes great fin,and never left prefling of the Lord until! be grant- 
ed his prefence again.But if men will commit fin and lie in it, not 
fearch it out, nor humble themfelves, nor reform, then the Lord 
will not be with them. This is evident in another cafe, in that 
of lAchan Jofh.j. and the Ifraelites they came to fight with 
the men of Ai y and fled before them,for the Lord was not with 
them •, why, what was the caufe of abfenting himfelf ? fee v. 1 1. 
Jfrte I hzth finned, and v. 12. Therefore the children of I [rati 
could r.ot ft and before their enemies^but turned their backj be- 
caufethey were accurfed- neither will I be with you any more 
except ye deftroy the accurfed from among you. If we will 
h ive the prefence of our lufts, we cannot expert the prefence 
of our God. Therefore look to it,God is not with thee, thou 
findeft it fo in many particulars, the reafon is, becauie (in is with 
thee in thy aflk&ions and continued practice. Thou art impeni- 
tent, &c 

• . \nd 

ao 8 For thott art with mc^Uc. 

A d f Ir.fi- 3 * An< ^ ^ In fi^ eiit J' We read this in the Ifraelites again ; 
delity? * ' tne Lord ^ ac ^ P r <>mifcd the land of Canaan (in that manner 
that all temporal promifes are made viz. conditionally ) but 
ftill they murmured and complained and believed not his word, 
they [pake agair.fi the good land; what befell them? th« Lord 
confumed every one of thzm, their carcajfes fell in the wilder-' 
tieffe. Numb. 14. and at the fame time when the Lord forbade 
them to fight, Go net up ( faid CMofes V. 42.) for the Lord 
is not among you, that ye be not J mitten before your enemies >, they 
did not believe the threatning, but would prefume to go and 
fight, and were difcomfited unto Hormah, for the Ar\ of the 
Covenant ftaied in the camp, and the Lord was not with them, 
v.43 .44. We deny our prefence unto thofe who dare not truft 
us, and God denies his prefence unto fuch as believe him noc 
Unbelief brings us into diitruft, and keeps out God from our 

4. NegleB of Gods ivorfkip and Ordinances. Two qualities 
G d orftiip rcmoye an undemanding perfon from another mans houfe : 
and ordinan- Firft, Opprobriow entertainment, or Secondly C ar elefs. Where 
ccs, a man is either reviled or negle&ed, what fhould he do abroad ? 

Not onely grievous commifiions, but alio incongruous omifli- 
ons caufe God to remove his prefence. When perfons care not 
to be with him in his ordinances and duties, God will not eafily 
be found to be with them in their diftreffes. GodVioth ufually 
proportion out an anfwerable dealing to our dealing. If we 
commit great fins, he will ftrike with great wrath • if we in 
our profperity flight him, he in our adverlity will hold off from 
us. Two things God doth to his own people for their care- 
lefnefsinhis worfhip^ 1. He ftrikes them : 2. He difertsthem 
(foratimeandinmeafure). See it in £W-4. They (hall not 
fo quickly find God in point of help, who do fo quickly lofe 
him in point of worfhip. 
Carnal confi- 5. There might be other qualities here alfa adjoined which 
dence., remove Gods prefence from us, v. g. Carnal confidence. When 

we reft on the arm of flefh, and truft to it for itrength, com- 
fort, deliverance in or againft all dangers. This man is cwfed 
and the Lord will for fake him % he fiall be like the heath in the 
de fart, and ft all not h^ow when good cometh, J<r. 17.5,6. As 
Irregular Acls. a jf irregular and extravagant atts , unwarrantable by 


Vcr.4* ^ 0r X ^ 0H art mt l )me ) & c * 2 °9 

your general or particular Calling , &c 

Secondly, Pofitive me *ns or waves how to order our felvesPcfuive means, 
that the Lord may be prefent with us in our diftrefles. 

Firfty Let it be your^prime care to be in covenant with him. Ltt ycur prime 
]f you how chufe him to be your God, you (hall then afluredly car * bc >- bci £ 
find him to be your God : if he be the God of our love and c G ^ nsnc wi;b 
fear • he will be the God of our fafety and comfort. Wicked 
men who ferve other gods , who like Pharaoh, know not the 
Lord; or as they in fob, who faid to the Almighty, Depart 
from m ; or as thofe in Pfal.2. Break his cords •, or as thofe in 
Jermiah, will not obey his Word • or as thofe in the Gofpel, 
Thsy will not have kirn to reign over them : When diftrefles and 
dangers furprize them, what can they do? to whom will they 
look ? to God they cannot look, nay they dare not look. Go 
to the gods whom you ferved^ andletthem fave you. If.8.22. 
What confidence can they have in him , or expectation from 
him, whom they would not know nor own ? but as Ifaiah 8.22. 
They /hall Icol^ unto the earth , and behold trouble and darkr 
*elfe % dimneffe of angui/h and they /hall be driven to darknefs. 
But if ye have chofen the Lord to be your God, that he is your 
God and you are his people, then in diftrefles the Cities of Re- 
fuge arc open unto you,he will ftick to you,never leave you, ore. 
you have a Father to go to, a God to flee unto, a God that 
will take care of you. Come my people (faith he If. 26. 20.)$ceaiioMs1. 
enter then into thy chambers and (hut thy doors about thee % hide 4»*« 

thy (elf m it were for a little [pace untill the indignation be over- 
paft. Here are chambers (withdrawing rooms provided) not 
open chambers, but with doors, and doors (hut round about-, 
intimating that guard of protection which the people of God 
fhall find from him, even in a common inundation. 

Secondly, Ten mu ft be in a prime manner now nith him, ifYoumuftbe in 
you would find him in a gracious manner to be prefent with 3 P rimc ms ^~ 
you in your diftrefles. In 3. refpecls efpecially be with him now ,q^° 

1. By Prime Meditations : / thought on thee in the night , Bvpiime M:- 
faid David,andwhen I awake, I am ftill with thee y Vh\ r 3 9. 1 S.ditaao. s. 

So Alaph , lam continually Withrhce, Pfal.73.23. Medicate 
much what is his will, and how to do his will. 

2. By prime affeElions : Let your hearts be with him. Take Bv pr ; me A f. 
delight to know him, and obey him. Fear his name, let the Lotions. 
Lord have thy love, thy fear, thy defires, thy joy, &c. 

He i. Bj 

2 1 o For thou art with ine^&c. Vcr, 4 

_ . 3. By prime fupplications : So much as you pray, fo often 

SicaIions." P " are you with God, and in a feafonable day (hall you find the 
virtue and fucceflfe of thofe prayers in the gracious and pecu- 
liar manner of Gods prefence for your good. The prayers 
noWjfliall open a lingular prefence of God with thee hereafter, 
perhaps many years hence. 
G:tche difpo- jV. You muft get the difpofitionf offuch to whom God hath 
fitions of fuch promifed his fpecial and gracious prefence. There are thefe tem- 
to whom Gad pers of heart which (hall find God prefent with them. 1. Bro- 
hfjSs ken 2 ' ^forming. 3. Upright. 4. Believing. 5. Pray- 
prefence. ing hearts. 

A broken heart 1. The humble and bro\en heart. Por thus faith the High 
and Lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whofe name is Holy , / 
dwell in the high and holy place with him alfo that U of an humble 
and contrite fpirit fo revive thefpirit of the humble, and to revive 
the heart of the contrite ones, If.57. 1 5. The Jfraelites mourned, 
and God fent help : the higheft heavens and the lowiieft 
hearts are the habitations of Gods gracious prefeace. 
A reforming 2.- The reforming heart : That puts off the provocations of 
iKarc. God, and makes way for all his fupporting and reviving attri- 

butes to be prefent with us, and for his love to uphold us in 
Chrift, and for all the prornifes to drop peace and ft rength to 
us. *s£d Candida tefta Columba. The Ifraelites put away 
their Jdols, then &c» 2 Chron. 15.2. The Lord is with jou v ^ 
while yoube "with him. Pfal.50. Hejhews his falvationtohim 
that ordereth his converfation aright. 
hn upright 3« The upright heart* Tor the eyes of the Lord run too and 

Bwarc. fro through the whole earth to [hew himfelf ftrong in ths behalf ef 

them who[e heart is perfeti towards him, 2 Chron. 1 6. 9 So the 
Prophet to King Afa. To the upright, God is a Sun and a Shield^ 
Pfal 84. 1 1 . So again Pfal. 1 1 . 2. His countenance doth behold 
the upright, and Pfal. 5. 12- With favour wilt thou compare 
him, at with a [hie ld t and Pfal. 1 12.4 .To the upright there ari- 
feth light in darkneffe, the Lord loveth the upright. His love 
is pre feat, &c 
A praying 4. The like may be faid for a praying heart, unto which 

town. God is always neer, it finds the prefence of God. (Pfal.145. 

18. Prefent with David, Peter, Jonah upon prayers, and the 
W<k. Jfraelkes cries. ) , And fo doth Faith ^ you read it often than 


Ver.4« F or thou art with me, &c. 211 

in the Kings and others, when they relied upon the Lord in their 
exigences, they found his admirable prefence with them for de- 
liverance, and viftory and comfort ; <ts4fa, Jthofafhat, c David, 
&c. Fahh finds out a God, and a God with us. 

Secondly, A fecond duty is for thofe in any diftrefle or dan- ^V™]* ]£ ar 
gers patier.tlj to bear all their evils from men, forafmuch as the ^' rc Q- CJ> 
Lord is with tbem. Not to be impatient,'or vexing, or fretting, 
or grudging, for why the Lord is with them ftill in his gracious 

Thirdly, A third duty, then to go on in duty freely without ^^ .^ , 
cares and diftra&ions, for who can hurt you, as longasthef rcc |y t 
Lord is wkh you ? 

Fourthly, Kn& laftly to hold ftp the worpjip of God cheer /W/j. Hold up the 
You have a good work and a good God : there may be ftorms wor(% of God 
but you have a good Pilot •, and there may be skirmiOies, but cheerfully. 
you have good armor 1 there may be dangers, but ftill you have 
a good God prefent with you • you have darknefs, but light in 
darknefs- you are in the (hadowes of death, but the Lord of 
life is in the valleys of death, to guide you, uphold you, fecure 
you, preferve you, deliver, faveand defend you. 

Ob. But we are full of fears, though you fay that the Lord 
be prefent with us. 

SI. There muftbe a believing apprehenfion of Gods pre- 
fence to remove our fears , a reall prefence is not fuffi- 

Ob. But if the Lord be prefent with us, why is all this evil 
befallen us? 

Sol. Gods prefence is not to banifli evils from us, but to com- 
fort and fupport us under evils, and to moderate and order 
them: as a Father is prefent with a fick Child. All the pre- 
fence of God is not in deliverance, but he is prefent alfo in his 
afiiftance, and in his comforts, though you be not delivered 
from your evils, yet you are inabled to bear them, and you are 
comforted under them, and this is a gracious prefence of God 
with you. 

E C 2 P S A L, 

212 Vcr.4» 

P sal. *j; 4. 

"Tffj red and thy ftaffe they comfort me r 

THESE words contain the diftinct and particular reafons 
of "Davids courage and fearlefnefs under all diftrefles and 
dangers, fo faith he, Thy rod andthyftaffe do comfort me. 

Some do conjecture that David intends this of the word of 
Cod which is called a rod for its authority in directing, and like* 
wife a ftaffe for its ability in fuftaining the foul. 

Others do conjecture, that onely a modal difference of affli* 
Eihns is imported by the rod and the ftafe, onely a leffer and a 
greater correction , as the fiajfe differs from the rod onely in 
the quantity or extenfion ., and then they make Davids mean- 
ing to be this, whether the diftrefTe and afflictions befalling me 
be greater or leffer, more gentle or (harp , both of them are of 
a comfortable influence and ufe unto me. 

A third con jecture is , That the rod here fpoken of hath re- 
ference to the fbeep, and the ftajf hath principal reference to the 
wolvefJThe fliepherds rod is Godscaftigation of his own people; 
the (hepherds ftafF, is Gods protection and defence againft the 
enemies of his people, and both of them are a comfort to 

I begin with the firft of thefe [ Thy rod doth comfort we"} 
There is you know, 

1. Virga dura : The rod of the wicked, which David faith, 
fhall not alwayes lie upon the back^ of the righteous , Pfah 


2. Virga dira 1 David calls it a rod of iron, Pfal. 2. 9. td 
breal^ in pieces the rebellious among the fons of men. 

3. Virga regalux The authority and power of Kings and 
Rulers, an Enfign of their dignity and government. Of if 
"David alfo fpeaks Pfal.i 1*0.2. and Rev 12.5. 

4. Virga difciplinaris : Solomon fpeaks much of it for the 
child 5 and fml ( I t.bink ) aims at Ecclefiaftical difcipline 


Vcr.4* Tfy r ^ andthyflaff they com fort mc. 2 1 

whenbefaid, 1 Cor.4.21. Shall J come to yon with a Rod} 

5. Virgo, P aft oral it, the Shepherds Rod, of which there arc 
three Ufes, 

1. N urner are Oves, To reckon up or count the fheep ; and 
inthisfenfe they are faid to paffe under the Rod, Lev. 27. 3 2. tells 
them one by one; and even fo are the people of God called the 
Rod of hit inheritance, Jer. 10. 16. fuchas he take9 fpecial notice 
or account of 

And take the words in thisfenfe. Thy Rod doth comfort wf, 
it holds well ; q.d. Though I am in fuch eminent dangers by 
reafon of evil men yet this is my comfort, I am not neglected 
of thee, thou doit not fuffer me to perifli, thou takeft notice of 
me, thou doft take and make an account of me, thy fpecial care 
looks afcer me. 

2. ProvocareOves, When the fheep are negligent and remifs 
in following or driving , the Shepherd doth with his Rod put 
them on,quicken their pace. And in this fenfe alfo D.tf /74 faith 
well, 7% Rod doth comfort me ; for it is a work which breeds 
much joy and comfort in the hearts of Gods people, when God 
doth put them out of a lazy, cold, formal walking, and doth 
(Tome way or otherj caufe them to mend their pace , to grow 
more active and fervent in his fervice and worfhip. 

3. RtvocareOves ; Tne flieep fometimes are petulant er di- 
vagantts, idly and mconfiderately ftraying from the flock, gra- 
zing alone , and wandring after other pastures, not conlidering 
the dangers which attend them by fuch afeparation and wan- 
dring. And therefore the fhepherddoth with his Rod ftrike 
and fetch them in again, and foprefervethem. 

In this fenfe alfo T>avid might well fay, Thy Rod d-th com- 
fort wf, for it is a great comfort that the Lord will not leave his 
fheep to the wayes of difcomfort, but brings them off from fin- 
ful erring* and wandrings , which ahvayes docxpofe them to 
their greateft danger- and troubles. 

So that the words do intimate a lingular part of Gods guber- 
nation or careful providence of his flock. The only difficulty 
is, whether this be adminiitred by the Rod of direction, which 
efpeoaily appears in the Word, or by the Rod of correction , 
which eminently appears in our afflictions. 

Some Interpreters incline to the former, others rather adhere 


2i4 T h r0 d an ^ l h ftW^J comfort me. Vcr.4 

to the latter ., I will touch on both , becaufe I perceive both 
are touched at by learned Interpreters. 

If you take the Rod here for Virga Dottrina, for the Rod of 
Doclrine, then this is obfervable, 

1 . That the Word of god is afingular comfort to the people of 
God y even in the Shadows of death. 

If you take the Rod here pre Virga Difciplinx t for the Rod 
of Correction, then this propofition is obfervable, 

2. That even gods afflictions afford caufe of much comfort to 
Gods fervants. 

I begin with the firft of thefe, viz. 
Deft. 1 That the Word of Cjod is of ftngular comfort to the people of God 

The Word of i n their greateftdi/lrejfes. What comfort the Rod and Staff 

fuu/comforr ar€ t0 the ^P' that is thc Word to chriftians - The Word a 
fo U h7sp°ccplTinR ocifor » i.Diredion, 2. Prevention, 3. Excitation, 4. Re- 
their gr?arcft vocation. How exprefs is David for this, in Pfal. 1 19.92 V*- 
diftr cifej. fofs thy law had been my delight, 1 fhould have perifhed in my af- 
flitlUns. Pfal. 1 19 50. This is my comfort in my afflitlions , for 
thy Word hath quickened me. V.93 . 1 Voill never forget thy pre- 
cepts 9 for with them thou haft quickned me. He had funk , he 
had beendrowncd,had he not catched hold on this twig,this rod 
held him up, nay, and put life into him alfo. 

The Word is compared therefore 1. to a Rock^ for fafety ., 
2. Honey for fweetnefle, 3 . Br efts lor quickning. So the Pro- 
phet, Ifa.i2.$ With joy Jhall ye draw waters out of the Wills of 
'Salvation. The Word of God (efpecially) in the promifes of 
it are Wells, they are Springs out of which a man may draw 
Joy and Salvation,even when inundations of calamities are nfen 
upon him, and likely to overwhelm him. 

The Word of The Word of Cod may be confidered two wayes, ei- 
God may be ( ner 

thTrf CrCd * [ Formally, in refpeft of it fe!f • fo is it a Senrnary of com- 
Formally. ^ ort ■ Comfort is in it as life in the root,or as beams in the Sun, 
or as any erTed in a caufe. It is compounded of lingular good- 
neffe, and fea'ed with fuch infallble truth, that it is there- 
fore able to comfort, and ilay, end refrefli the foul in any di- 
Qt effc&ualty. Or, ^Sf e ^ Ma! h > as caching forth a&ual comfort unto us : 
And thus, as honey which is fwcet in it felf muft be tafted if we 


Vcr-4. Thy rod and thy flaffthey comfort me. 2 i 5 

will apprehend itsfweetneiTc ., and as light which is beautiful in 
it felf,mu(t yet have an eye opened if we will difcern its beauty; 
fo the Chnftian, though the Word be a comfortable good and 
truth in itfeif, yet he muft have a believing eye. a believing 
heart to behold and apply this, if he will find it a comforting 
Word unto him. What the Apoftle fpake for the profi:ablc 
efficacy of the Word,that the Hebrews milled ofit,Heb.4. Be- 
caufe they did not mingle it Kith Faith, the fame is as true of the 
comfortable efficacy thereof, which if we want Faith , we muft 
neceiTarily want. 

2 . Again, there is a double comfort, There J s a dcu- 

1 . One is Improper and only Negative, which is nothing elfe ^ Comfort. 
but an infenfibleneffe of our miferable evils. As it is with fome In »P r °p^,a.id 
people who feel ( in extreme dangers of life) no pain, not that on y N ^ a:ivc » 
they apprehend any good ground of hope, but becaufe their 

fenfes arc ftupified and they apprehend no difeafe or ache. Jn 
this fenfe it is confefTed that the Word doth not comfort- the 
Word doth not fcarifie the confeience, nor is it of any comfort 
to a confeience that is fcarified. 

2. Another is Troper and Pc/itive, which is a gracious and Proper aniPo- 
fweet refrefhment, not only under the prefence, but alio under lltiyc - 

the fenfe of outward evils, wherein a man doth apprehend the 
dangers, but withal the defences ^ feels the waves, but withal 
fits fait on the rocks ; hears whac man faith in his threatnings, 
and alfo what God faith in his Promifes . the apprehenfion of 
whofe favour, and goodneiTe and ftrength, and fidelity through 
them, doth yet in the midit of all, fill him with much confi- 
dence, iingu'ar peace, unexprefTible contentment, and fuperla- 
tive rejaycings. 

There be two virtues of the Word, 1. It is an Antidote , 
2. It is a Cardial-. When etils arc future,it is an Antidote, and 
arms the heart to meet and encounter them-, when evils are 
prefent it is a Cordial, and enables the heart not only with flip- 
port, but alfo with vidory ^ makes the Chrittian not only a Pa- 
tient fufferer, but liKewife a Triumphant conquerer ; yea, S. 
Pdtil went above both tbefe, In all his troubles ( and they were 
as great and (harp as ordinarily befal people,) he was more then 
a C^nqueror, Rom. 8 He overcame them not only by a meer 
Suffering, but triumphed alfoovcrthem by an exceed^*; Re- 
joycing. 3. Again 


The Word in 
ali the pans of 
ic Comforts. 


The Word 




7hy rod and thy ft ajf they comfort me. Ver.4. 

3 . Again, take the word in all the farts of it - They are ei- 
ther a formal or a redundant comfort : The promifes and pre- 
cepts are more formal for comfort, the threatnings redundantly 
for comfort to thofe who are deliveredfrom them. 

4. Once more. The #W doth comfort perfons under di- 

** 1. Difpcfitive ♦, By forming and framing the heart for com- 
fort : For as you do not pour in the fweeteft waters, until firft 
you have cleanfed and fitted the velTel ; fo God doth not diftil 
the precious comforts of his Word, until he hath firft prepared 
our hearts. The promifes of the Word are (I know well) like 
thofe fingers in the Canticles which drop Myrrh and Frankin- 
cenfe, but then the heart mud be mournful, which muft be com- 
forted ; broken, which muft be bound up ; grieved,which muft 
be anointed, &c. the which difpofitions are by the Word 
wrought in perfons asfo many precedent receptivities for the 
comforts of the Word. The Word therefore opens the eyes, 
humbles the heart,&c. 

2. Imfrejfive ; By letting in the drops of Salvation; by 
making divine mercy our mercy, divine ftrengthouritrength , 
a goodneffe for us,a fhield for us, a rock unto us, fo that mife- 
ry and mercy do meet. The Ivie clings about the Oake,and the 
believing Chriftian , through the impreffion of the Word, fa- 
ftens and clafps his Gcd and God doth imbrace and uphold him. 

3. Excluftve ■ When nothing elfe can comfort a man in his 
diftreiTes, then the Word can. The Bird from her neft being 
hunted, skips from this bough to the other tree, and then flees 
from that tree to another bufh, and then whips away and lights 
on the bare earth, but being ftill purfued (he finds no reft till 
{he mounts up and away to her Neft : So it is with us in our 
diftrelTes, we may flee to the power and pity of our friends, and 
we may find whafi Job did of them, that they are miserable Com- 
forters . then we may wing it to the bags of gold and filver , 
but we (hall find it that riches do not deliver from wrath ^ and 
then to our own working heads for plots and devices, but we 
may be held fail with the cords of our own making. Till we do 
mount up, till we do reft in the Word of God , and neft our 
felves under the fhadow of his wings, we (hail find no fufficient 
ftay nor comfort. 

■ ofya. 

Ver-4- ?h Todandthyflaff they comfort me. 217 

Obj. But how may all this appear , that the Word is of that How it appears 
finglar comfort to a pexfon indiitrefle? thstAe w rd 

Sol. Thus ; I . It hath in it whatever may adminifter ccmfort*?* co c mioi: m 
tooxctndtftrcjjes. I. bach in it 

If thy Mftrejjes be inward, ("though the text intend? not them) what may aJ- 
'what will be comfort to a troubled confeience, but the free mer- niuiftcr com- 
cy of a Gotland the precious blood of a Saviour ? and where runs ^ olc . in ^d* 
that precious and foul-quieting blood, but in the Veins of the ft r f™ ,rd 
Word. Stay me with fljgons, Cant. 2. 5. 

If thy dtftreffes be out ward y and anting either. In outward di- 

1. 1 rom particular wants and fear s for thy fuftenanee , theft^"* 
Word ftaies thee up with promifes, that thoufhalt verily fa fed, F ™ m P articu " 
Pfal.37. and thztGod will nevtr leave nor for/ake f^*, Heb.13. a:vS8n5, 
and it will give thee Catalogues of particular inftances for this 


2. From [fecial a fault s and enterprizes of evil men, whofeF.-om tp.cial 
policy and lubt lcy,andwhofe power and ability,and whofc ma- allauUs. 
lice and malignity perhaps thou maid be too apt to fear, but the 

Word can anfwer all thefe with the intentions of God for thy 
good, with his Love, with his Care, with his Wifdom , with 
his Power. ]t is the very Armory of thy (trength,thy fhield and 

2. The Word is of 'power to atluate Faith , and Faith being The Word ic 
actuated can find comfort and flay in any diftrefle. The Word of power to a- 
can aftuate Faith, for as it is the Mother of Faith, ( Faith comes auacc F *kk 
by W^foitisthe^r/^ofFaitb, it breeds Faith up. The Rom * 10, 
promifes of the Word are therefore called the Brefls of Confuta- 
tion on which Faith doth depend for nourifhment: When a 
mans heart is fometimes ready to faint within him, and is almoit 
overwhelmed , then the Word ftirs up Faith and quickens it. 
It difcovcrs fuch unfpeakabie fuccors and goodnelTe, that Faith 
now is furred up and actuated, and fee to work to truft on th;» 
God for Salvation. And then when Faith is able to work,com- 
fort and ftay come into the foul : an acting Faith is not only 
able to fuftain a foul, but to refrefhand revive it. When D.- 
vid is able to believe, he is not only then above himfelf, but 
likewife above all men and dangers • though the mortmains ic 
movtd he ftands itill as the hills round about Jern/alem ; and 
though an hofi of men hcamp againft kim , yet he Wt.'i net \ 

F f nhat 

z 1 8 Thy r$d and thy ftajf^ they comfort mt. Vcr.4 

what men can do unto him, but encourageth himfelf in the Lord 
his God. It cannot be otherwife,for Faith knowing what God 
is, and applying all that to me, This God is my God, and this 
Mercy is my Mercy, and this Power, and this Fidelity are mine ^ 
why, nothing can revive and comfort the foul more thea 
The Word 3* The Word fyepf open and ftp aft the woyetvf Communion 

keeps open all 'twixt us and God y and therefore it muft be of lingular comfort 
wsycsofCom-uatousinallourdiftrefTes. It inlivens prayer, and prayer in- 
mU ? ni r ^a a ^ vens cora ^ ort given, &c. By it our graces are exceedingly en- 
si W larged, and duties goon in a more lively m nner ^ yea, the pow- 

ers of prayer are kept up by it, Gods voice ever is a mearfc to 
inlarge our voice : Now every Grace, as I have often told you, 
is like a Rofe which buds with fweetneflc; and every Pr a j r is 
like a *Bes which comes back with honey : that which keep* up 
the Spirir of Grace and the Spirit of Supplication, doth ever keep 
the Spirit of Strength and of Confolat ion. 
God doth efp:- 4. The Lord doth especially appear unto his fervants by his 
dally appear iy Qr d t there he fpeaks unto them , and through it ; he (hews 
umoh ' s f * r ." himfelf unto them, whether by direction andcounfet, or by ft*y 
Woxd, y l an< * comfort : there you may ftill fee God your God , though 
afflicted. Now that which gives us a fight of God, of the 
God of all comfort , muft neceffarily be a lingular means to 
breed comfort to our fouls in the dayes of our diftreffe.Nothing 
f can uphold and enliven the foul in any condition fo as the pre- 
' fence of a gracious God and Father. Cant.z.^Mii banner over 
me was Love, 
Vfe Now to make fome brief Application of this unto our 

felves, Is the Word of God shat which comforts thefoulin 
diftrefles? . 
They are c nc- 1 . Then firft, What enemies are they to their own comforts \ 
anies to their tyta are sir angers to thefludy and kncwledg of the Word } There 
iomfortwho arc f ome p €r fons (they are not worthy of confutation but dif- 
i^Wofd" 510 ^ 310 ) who are enemies to the Word- to the Preaching of it, 
and to the Study of it. What elfe means that of the Papifis , 
who deny the Leftion of it to the Laicks. The Lord God 
thinks it fit and able to give inftruclion to the fimple , and to 
convert them, but they fufpeft nothing but danger , &c. but I 
areiinquifti them 5 we our lelves % I fear , are extremely guilty, 


Ver.4* Tfy rod aridtbyjlajf they comfort me. 2 19 

and indeed are more cruel to our felves in our pra&ifes , then the 
Papifts are in their doctrine unco us in this particular. The 
Word of God i who ftudrcs it ? who looks on it ? who re- 
gard* it ? the matter of it, donotwejudg it as too precife / 
the phrafe of it, do we not flight it as too thread-bare and 
courfe ? One man can fpend a day and weeks in handling a pair 
of Cards \ another c in fit up a whole night to read a Comedy or 
perufc a Tragedy, or to run over fome Hiftory • But who makes 
the VV-rdofGod his meditation day *r night ? If we be to read 
it, then we want time ^ if we be to hear it, then all time is too 
long • an hour feems a week unto us. Befides , the greatnefs of 
the (in, that hereby we injurioufly flight the Magnalia r Dei- t 
how foolifhly improvident are we alfo for our own comforts? 
the Scriptures are written both for our Confutation and for our 
ConfcLition ; from them we muft look for all our ftrength, and 
all our flay, and all our peace, and all our refrefhings in the 
dayesof our diftrefles. Confcience cannot hold up wichouc. 
them, nor our foul, and yet we mind them not , we read chera 
not, we regard them nor. 

2. Then if evir you would have the Werdto be aftay and 1i my yo* 
comfort to you in yeur diflrtffes. be more intimately acquainted"™ '•} havct t* 
With it. onto%M 

I know not almoft how to perfwadc you to this, yet con- more tattam- 
fider, ly acquainted 

1. Ifdifireffesdobefalyou fas what man living canafTurewithk. 
himfelfagainft thefe) you W*7/ be glad to findfemething that lidi & ciTti 
may J? ay and comfort you. You know that the deluge in ^betUdoT 
dayes of Noah drowned not only the houfes but the mountains, bmcthiog to 
all was under water • fo may it beftl us, all our earthly fupplies,comfon you 
and anchors, and truft-to's may be under water ; diftrefles may 

flv.ke and fplit all our inferior confidences. At which times 
we feek for comforters, Oh that fome comfort might be faid to 
ftay us up » we are res dy to give uptheGhoft, our own weight 
is ready to crufh and fink us, we are at our wits end, our hearts 
will fink like Nabals, or flic out like Judju'%. 

2. If the Word be not comfort, nothing can be true comfort and [ t coc VV ^rd Ja 
ftay unto thee. If the Word be not comfort, God isnotcom-norconvorc, 
fort (for God will never comfort any contrary to his Wurd) and noiLinjcw. 
COufctCnce is not Comfort {for confcience is but theEcchocf 

F f 2 nc 

2 2 o Jhj rod and thy fiaff they comfort me. Ver .4. 

the pyordfor comfort) nay, and no creature can be comfort, for 
they are all infervice to God -, they are either his armies-of 
wrath, or his clouds of refrefhings. Now what a miferable e- 
ftate is this, that a man is in an heavy diftreffe, and yet hath nei- 
ther God, nor Confcience, nor Word, nor Creature to be a ftay 
and comfort unto him ? 
The Word can V^etthy diftreffes be never fo many t &neverf deep % yet theWord 
do it in great- can be a comfort and a ftay unto thee. The Sun wil ftiine and the 
cit diftreffes comforts of the Word cannot be lockt out.Thou mayeft have a 
God to look on when thou haft not a friend to look on, and a 
God to reft on, and a God to fpeak unto thee; for who can 
way-lay that intrinfecal Comunion'twixt God and the foul. In 
the multitude of my thoughts, faid David, thy comforts delight 
my foul. Who can hinder the Sun from (hiningon the earth? 
or the Word from comforting the foul and confeience. 
What is to be Objeil. But what is to be done that we may find the Word 
done that the our comfort and ftay in the times of our diftreffes > 
Word may Sol. I will briefly give you fome directions, and fo conclude. 

comfort. jf you would find the Word of God to v comfort you in your 

diftreffes, then, 
Serioufl; fearch 1 . Serioujly fea^ch andftudy it ; Unknown things are of no 
and ftudy ir. u f e t0 us ^ nor y e t of any comfort. What comfort is it to the 
poor man though there be a vein of filver or a vein of gold in 
his grounds, as long as he knows not this. The p romifes of 
God are a rich treafury (and therefore they are called precious, 
2 Pet. 1. 4 ) indeed they contain in them the mines of mercy and 
comfort,but what are thefe to an ignorant mind ? It is granted 
that knowledg may be divided from comfort, but yet it is as 
true, that comfort cannot arife without knowledg , the heat of 
the Sun follows the light of it. Therefore take pains about the 
Word ; as the Word doth unbowel our hearts, fo fhould our 
hearts unbowel the Word : we fhould heartily, and reverent- 
ly, and earneftly perufc it • though in fome places we may kifs 
the book and adore the myfteries, yet in moft places we may 
kneel down and bleffe God for revealing fuch treafunes. 
F »• rfl 2. Peremptorily believe it : If it be not a Word of Faith it 
believe U. can never ^ e a Word of Comfort . You read in it what the 
Lo r disin him felt, and what to his people, what a Covenant 
he hath made with thecn in the general,and how he hath branch* 

Ver.4 . Tfjj rod And thy flaff thcj comfort me. 21i 

ed out his goodnefs (anfwerable to all their conditions) infe- 
veral promifes. If you believe not thefe, if you do not exalt 
thtfe truth r , if you do not apply the r goodnefs unto your felves 
in your particular exigences, comfort will not come, Pf^$- 
1 have truft<din thy mercies, my heart /ball rejoice in thy falva- 
tion. Draw the brefts s fuck at them, and then milk comes ; 
taftc the Minna, and then you (hall find it fweet • take hold 
on the word, trull to it. rely on it, Lord (fay J this is thy own 
word of truth, and it is a good word, thou haft put it out as a 
plank for my foul to reft on. It is a word proper to my con- 
dition, I know that thou arc true in all thy fayings (faithful art 
thou who hjfi promifed) O let thy falvation now come unco thy 
fetvant according to thy word. Idotruft upon it, O remember 
the wcrd unto thy fervant, upon Which thou haft cau, r ed me to 

3. Carefully obey it : If Divine truths do guide you, Divin e 
comforts will find you. How can you ever expect that the Cirefu'.Iyo- 
word will be jour ftay, which you make to bzyour fcorn-, that * y 
it (hould be a, rock^ to drop honey t when you make it a roc\ of 
offence unto you. Jo/hua and Caleb fully followed the ftW and 
it brought them into the land of Canaan. Truths known and 
d.fobeyed, prove (harpeft fwords in our diftreffes : Truths be- 
lieved and obeyed afford the fweeteft comforts. If the Word 
be a lamp to thy fret, they will prove a light to thy dar kytfs. They 
who treafure up food in times of plenty, live on it in times of 
fcarcity •, the laborious Bee hath all the Winter long an hive 
of honey •, and the obedient Chriftian fhall find the word in his 
worft times an horn of falvation and joy. 

Now I proceed to the fecond interpretation of the Text: Thy 
rod doth comfort me (.*'.) Thy Fatherly ArHiftions or Corre- 
ctions, fob 1. 21. The Lordgave^ and the Lord hath taken a- 
way, blejfed be the name of the Lord. The people of God have 
caufetoblefle God, forlofTes and arHidions as well as for en- 
joyments: and indeed afflictions are well compared to a rod, 
partly for the fyarprefs, partly for the uftfulncfs y partly for 
thzintcnthiox fevpe why it is ufed ; Corrections are Inftru- 
cTions,but more of this anon. The Proposition obfervable 
hence is this ^ 



may be con ft- 

Thy red and thy ftaff'thtj co mfort me. Vcrlj. 

Z) #.2. That even Gcdsafflittions afford caufe of mttch comfort to Gods 

Godssffl'ai- people. 

omaff:rd caufe a thing may be faid to be our comfort two wayes , either, 
of comfort to Ob\eUively, Becaufe its the thing which doth delight and 

Ariffinay refre(h the r ° ul * ic is ^'flower at which the Bee doth fuck- 
beftid to be "• thus God in his excellencies of grace and mercy (in and through 
our comfort Chrift) are our comforts. 

Operativelj , Becaufe it may work out and produce fuch 
things as may occafion lingular comfort to us. Asphyfick doth 
produce (by feveral operations) a right temper and healthy 
in this refpeft affli&ions are a caufe of much comfort. 
Afflictions may be considered many wayes ^ 
i . %Abfeltttelj, in their proper fphere and nature ; fo they 
are not comforts, but difcomforts ^ they are the Tomb-ftones 
covering our delights ; the Winter which (hrivels up all our 
flowers, like the Bands of the S abeam which came in, and took 
away the cartel and the fervants of fob> a land- floud which 
drowns all the Meadowes and Gardens. 

2. Senfibly, as received by our natural apprehenfions and af- 
fections : fo they are a (harp rod. Cha finings for the prtfent 
feemgrievout y fold theApoftle, Heb.i2.il. And thy hand Vpos 
heavy upon me^foid Davtd Pfal.32.4. He hathcaufed the ar» 
rofcs of his quiver to enter into my reins, he hash filled me with 
biftemefs, he hath made me drunks with "toormfoooi , faid the 
Church, Z^w.3.13. 15. 

3 . Concomitantly f& accompanied with a fpecial and gra cious 
providence of God, fending, directing, mcafurirg, working in 
them and by them. And thus they prove comforts to the peo- 
ple of God. T>Avid acknowledged it to be a ble§ed thing to 
becorrettcci and taught, P faU 94.12. and profefTeth out of ex- 
perience, That ii Was good for him that I: e had been ajflitled, 
Pfil. 1 19.71. My brethren count it all joy when ye fall into 
divers temptations t faith the Apoftle fames 1.2. and we re\oice 
in tribulation^ faid SfVaui Ro. 5.3. 

ake In many refr-e&s may the people of God take comfort in 
comfort in af- their affltdions, 

fiicVtons, I. If they ?or\to the caufe ^tnyvvfjAvn ^ the efficient and in- 

If they look to ternally moving caufe. ' It is the love of a Father, the phyfick 
which a Father tempers • So many as I love Tribute and chafien, 




In what re- 


Vcr.4» Tbj rod And thy (iaffthej comfort me. 223 

Rev 3.19 Here arc verba [_ I rebul^~] and vtrbera £ / chaflen~\ 
both may well be taken, for both come from love. So the A- 
poltle Heb. 12.6. tvhim the L^rd loveth he chafleneth , and 
(c our get h every fon ftionm he receivtth. The Cro fie is a letter 
for every fcholar, and affli&ion a rod for every child • it ar- 
gues no love to leave the child to himfelf , let him alone, I will 
look no more after him Jet him take his courfe. It is an argu- 
ment of great indignation when che Lord lets a man go on in 
his fins and prefper , but it is mercy when God will rather 
phyfick a child then lofe him j lay us in a lick bed, then a for- 
lorn grave, crc. Love ibiukj no evil and 'Hinds no evil, faid 
S. T>aul 1 Cor. 1 3.5. there is nothing comes from Divine love 
but either it is a Cordial, or an Antidote, either it prevents or 

2. Secondly, If they lo^ to the difpoftng caufe (if I may If chfy ^ tQ 
fofpeak). Afflictions rife not out of the duft, they come not c t, c difpofine 
by chance, as fury and rage are removed from them becaufe caufc. 
they come out of love, fo rafhnefs and danger are removed be- 
anifetbey are diftributcd by divine wifdom. T . . ( . 

Thewifdomof God about our afflictions which makes for Co ] "L^™ \ n 
our comfort appears thus, afRidions. 

1. For the time: You (hall never have any one affliction For tbecimc 
but when there is need. If need be (faith the ApoiUe 1 Pet . 1 .6 J 
ye are in heavinefs through manifold temptations God cor- 
rects us not for his pleafure, but for our good. Phyfick fome- 
times may be as needful for our prefervation, as food : Gcd 
duth not delight to grieve the children of men. Wc do not al- 
ways plow the earth, nor doth God alwayes chide and afflict ; 
When the lejfon is /earned, the rod us burned; therefore the A- 
poftle addes in the fame verfc though it be need yet it is but for 
A feafon. 

2. For Meafure: He debate j in meafure Ifa 27.8. and cor-,, 
reels in judgment Jer. 10.24. N° c according to our deftrts, but 
according to our slrength • It (hall not be at much as God can 
do, but onely fo much ,is may do you good, you cannot want one 
drachme or ingredient. He will not fuffertu to be tempted a- 
bwc t hut we are able. I Cor. to. 13. For he Veil! not lay upon 
man more then is meet. So Elihu Job 34. 23. He confidcrs 
whereof we are made, and therefore with a wife companion 


224 Thy rod and thy ft ^ff they comfort me. Vcr.4, 

proportions the affli&ions with the abilities. 
Formatter. 3. For Matter : He fends onely ihat particular affli&ion 

which (hall do us good. Someevils perhaps would not ftir us : 
there are peculiar difeafes and peculiar remedies for them. All 
our afflictions are proper phyfick which (hall furely hit the ma- 
lady, carry away the difeafe and heal the foul. 
For the final 3. If they look to the final caufe* Every prudent Agent 
caufe. hath his end unto which all his a&ions are derived. If the 

gotdfmithcaft the metal into the fire it is to refine it; If the 
Fuller dips and rubs and beats the cloth, it is to cleanfe and 
whiten it v If the Vi*e-dreff<r preflfeth the grapes, it is to fetch 
out the liquor. If God comes with his right hand of blefiings 
or with his left hand of afflictions, if with any erodes, if with 
more crofles, all fhall work for good : Two ends God hath in 
every particular dealing with his people, viz,. His own glory , 
and th,ir advantage ;a/l things cooperate for good to them that 
lovekim y Rom 8, Divines do diftinguifh'twixt poena indicia lis 
and poena medicinalis ; thats a devouring fire which confumes 
the adverfary, or like a whirlwinde which carries away-, The 
other is like a Refiners fire which melts and purgeth, or like the 
gentle winde which onely fannes the corn. Not like a thief 
who (trips us of all, but like a Father, who takes away the old 
clothes, and leaves us better ^ or like atyde which carries out 
fome (hips, and brings in more •, what a comfort is this } that 
that which take? off the com r ort, doth prove a greater comfort? 
that every a fflidion is fo far from robbing me of good, that it 
is a fafe tydeto bring in more mercy and blefting. 

If cht> Look to 4- ^ t * ie Y ic0 ^ t0 the e ff e ^ s P rocmced ty afflictions, here al- 
thc effects, fo is matter of comfort, for they give more inftrvBion and hx* 
T*kv give derft anting , firft 9 \Vhat we are, and fecondlj, What our waves 
more inftrudi- arC) anc j t hir£lj, What our outward comforts are, and fourth- 
on * /;, What God andHeavenly things are. 

What we are Th ** vpe are P cort ^ K i s - Full of defires, full of wants, crav- 

ing for every thn£ fare of nothing, mafters of nothing reach* 

ing for much, delighting too much, and quickly fpoiled of 

What u vra c ^ at ^ e aYe f[ K M things : Every lafh may afthre us that we 
m % havebeen wandring and lazy •, man futfers for his fw^Lzm.i^v* 

Thou dnft with rebuts correct man fur his iniquities^ Pfal. 


Ver.4» Tfy rodandthyftaf they comfort me. 225 

39. 1 1. Fools that we are, becaufeof our tranfgreffions and ini- 
quities We are afjlittcd, Pf. 1 07. 1 7. 

That cur comforts are but mean and mutable things ; but 3 whit ODf ou:- 
flowcr, though fweet yet (hort, though as a Sun very glorious ward comforts 
in our eyes, and we dream of an everlafting day, yet it quickly «*• 
fets in a dark night, a tyde flowing and ebbing • this day hand- 
led with fmilcs, the Rext day looked on with tears one hour re- 
joycing becaufe we poflfefs them, the next grieving becaufe we 
have loft them , fuch a fhadow are all our earthly com- 

Laftly,That C]nd and Heaven fhould have our hearts and what God and 
they are the oneiy tilings - 5 thefe are good indeed, the chiefeft heavenly things 
good, fulled good, immutable good, of all things thofe arc rCt 
belt and moft certain which make us happy, you can never love 
God too much, nor to your lotfe. The Lord if Gcd, faid they, 
when the fire fell down on the facrificcs, fo &c. none like to 
God now. 

2- They give more humilihy : Profperity doth bazird us _.. Jyf 
unto two great lodes, One of Cj^who is the Lord faid thac fforc h ucn hi:y.- 
proud Pharaeb. So Nebuchadnezzar boafts and vaunts ere he 
was driven out. Another, of our own fouls. I fpake unto thee 
in thy profperity but thou would/} not hear,, Jer.22. XI. Men are 
apt to flight God, in communion, in his Ordinances, in his fer- 
vants, in duties, in counfels ; they are purTed up and flight 
others, fanfie vain things, and are unfenfible of the miferiesof 
others-, but afflictions breathe out that ill fpiht, abafe the fpi- 
lit of man, make him to know himfelf better, a God better, a 
Church better, duties better, his fervants better, communion 
with him better. 

3. And more humiliation : The bufine fs of Repentance kU And ™* c hL " 
dom goes on with that fuccefs as in the times of arrliciion ^ mlilauon, 
then we fearch and try our heart 7, and then We txill bow our 

/elves before the mighty Gcd , and then we will pray ( as the 
CMariners in Jonah fell to their prayers in the ftorm) and 
then we can pour out water before the Lord(a* the Ifraelitcs in the 
thunler) and then our hearts come to be tender indeed and can 
judge our fins and accufe and condemn our (ins and hate all the 
methods of fin. Tfccybrli 

4. Imightadde what an tner cafe they Iring to all en- gra- ™™i[ K 

G g ces. 

226 Thy red and thjjlaff, they comfort me. Vcr.4 

ces> To our Faith which now flies unto and pleads out the 
proaiifes •, unto Patience, which is now taught quetJy to fub- 
mit • unto Zeal, which is now more flaming ; unto heavenly 
windednefs, contentment, thankfulnefs , and all the peaceable 
fruits of holinefs,, The Gold is brighteft in the Furnace, the 
Rofeinthe Still, the Grapes in the PrelTe • but this were to 
enlarge the Theme to the utmoft. It is enough for the demon- 
ftration of the Point, to (hew that if afflictions make us better 
to know God, our felves, the creatures • if they make us bet- 
ter in our hearts and lives, by mortifying of our fins, by additi- 
on to all our Graces, by exciting and forwarding all duties,^r. 
that then they are fuch things upon which the people of God 
may take comfort. 
fitfo Now for the application of this point: If affliflions be 

the rod which the people of God may (in the refpe&s before 
named) take comfort in, 

Then Firft, Hew extremely are they out, who judge them' 
They arc mis- felves forfaken of God, hated of God, and utterly forgotten be- 
? a H en,( ! ho caH f e °f ^ prefent ajflitlions ? Many are apt to make their 
S y ^^^ a afflidions the peculiar argument for their rebellious unbelief 
kenof God to work on ^ O if the Lord did love me, would he have dealt 
becaufe of pre- thus with me I would he have withdrawn fuch a comfort ? or 
fcas *ffli&ions.fuch a confort fo near unto me, fo dear unto me ? Yes that he 
would : the withdrawment of thy neerefi comforts is no argu- 
% _ ment that the Lord doth not love thee ^ that which thou called: 
thy neereft comfort, might have proved thygreateit mifchief. 
Thou didft fet itneerer to thy heart then God himfelf, thy 
thoughts were more on it, and thy affe&ions ftrongly bound to 
it, and thou durft not truft God with it. Why, the Lord in 
love to thy foul (intending thee lingular good) hath rfflided 
thee in that kind ■, better lofe a pofie, then an inheritance ^ an 
earthly comfort, then an heavenly God. Now that love is fet 
more fully and to purpofe on God, now affe&ionshang more 
loofe to the creature- now thou haft more full communion and 
fociety with God,and t3keft more ^°!«ght then ever, Dulcitts ex 
. ipfa fentebibumpiracjua^ and what hath God how done unto 

^raedwho * ce > whlcJl ar £ ues want of love unto thee ? 
artlmprriem Secondly, They are as much to be fhent and blamed who in 
under aril fti- their afflictions flee out with vehement impatience, dif content \ 
odsj. . defpatw 

Vcr.4- 'Tfy r °d arid thy fluff they comfort me. 227 

defpairs^ murmuring! and expofiuUtions with the Almighty 
. Why hall thou dealt thus with us } and what is my lin ? 
and who would ferve fuch a God ? All thus evil u of 1 t L rd. 
yphj /h'juld I ferve him any longer ? Brethren, thefe are fearful 
expreilions , and fuch as do prognosticate fome fudden judg- 
ments if not found Iy and timely repented of. Ah wretch ! 
doeit thou yet difpute with God? doth thy affliction feem /a 
peculiar} which yet, many befides thee continually talle of? 
or Jo intolerable when others burdens have been far more hea- 
vy to bear then thine ? thou haft an ign rant and proud fpirit. 
Didft thou fee thy fins aright, thou wouldft find little reafon to 
murmur at thy afflictions ; thou w< uidft rather wonder at the 
mercy which hath fpared thee all this while, then at the great- 
tie fs of the affliction which is no way anfwcrable to thy de- 

3. Then let us examine our hearts whether our aJJI '"#«*' Examine whe- 
have proved comforts h'nro pes or no. That the Lord hath aitlict-cher cur 1 
ed moft of us we know well, one hath loft an husband, another &i~ns bavc 
a wife, another a child, another a parent, another an e.tate- F^vtdcom- 
one hath bcenfkk of a feaver, another of the pox, and another tons * 
of the plague, many of us have been at deaths door, encring in- 
to the chambers of death. But as ns&sfmerm CO the Princes, 
What hath bien done to Mordecaifor thit f fo I now, nr. i 
have afflictions wrought in us ? I befeech yon confider three 
things • Con 

1. That the Lord will be accented with for bit s^zs 

well a* for hid Mercies, The Phyfitian expects not onely What^ 1 *^ J 1 * 1 
fuccefs his (fcrduls have had, but alfo what efficacy his I 
Tills have had. Every ficknefs, and every lofle, andev.r 1 as" 

ftroke of God on t!:cc , will afTuredly come into the account w« • «s fo: his 
It is a meiTenger difpatched from God, and he looks for an mcjci «- 
anfwer, VVhatfaidhe? What did he when I ftruck h im ? Did 
he humble his heart ? Or did he harden hknfelf ? Did he heark- 
en unto thee ? Or did he defpife thee ? 

2. That the L'jrd hath not done wit'j tf#, ifaffiiT:; 

done no good upon us. Thou haft many a comfort yet left behind 
that God may pull away, he may pull the husband or the wifi s <to 

out of thy bofom, he may blaft thy name, or th} eftttc ( m ■*• 

noce'.di >;rtes, as he faidj God hath ye: more gM;ction<(as 

G g 2 *r- 

228 7hf rod and thy (taff tbej comfort me. V'cs.4- 

arrovees in his quiver) and believe it, if letter afflictions will not' 
awaken: us, God will rife in higher ftrokes and fetthcmon,if 
we belong to him. 
There Is Tome- 3. There is fomething to be done when affUflhns are upon ui> 
thing to be __ nay more to be done then ordinary if ever we exped that they 
<£one when at- (hould prove comforts to us. For a man to think that tie may 
anions are ] iC an dfleep,or rifeand eat,and walk abroad as at other times, 
when he takes phyfick, this were a dangerous folly So to ima- 
gine that good and comfort will come to us by our affli&.ons : 
when yet perhaps we hardly mind God at all • or onely look up 
in a cold, grave, poor formality andcuftome, hunting prefently 
after earthly delights, fports, vanities, or which is worfe, on 
fins, &c. 
Ob. But how may we know whether the red will prove a 
Kbw may we com f rt to us, or no ? 

the7od W Jiil SoL 1 wil1 bridly d€clare th * c unt0 Y ou . ^ it make thee 
prove a comfort l» Senfible. 2. LMournful. 3. FemtentiaL 4. Truii- 
Y ful. 

If it make us . , 1. If it make thee fenfwle \ if thy afflictions be full of 
ienfible. . friar pnefs, and thy heart ft ill remains full of hardneff, thou canft 
not fo much comfort thy [elf, becaufe thou art afflicled, as thou 
mayeit ftifpetb and judge thy felf becaufe thou art hardned. We 
fhould warily look to our felves in this (and pity it alfo mo- 
thers ) that the Lord fhould ft r ike us and we feel it not, that 
an affli&ion makes no impreflion orenterance. It doth noc 
make us look above us (to God) nor within us (to cur confer- 
ence) nor without us (to our convey Cations.) That like Fhd* 
raoh after all we do not fet the word of God, nor the rod of 
God to our hearts, but plainly defpife his dealings, and go on 
as if nothing had befallen u% nor regard the operation of his 
hands, as if we had no fins which deferved the affliction, or 
God intended nothing at all when he ltruck us with the affli- 
dion. But if in an evil day we consider and try our wayes ; 
if thy heart becomes tender, thou feeleft, and feardr,^nd fay eft 
(I have finned) this is a good hope that the rod may prove a 
comfort unto thee. 
Mournful. ztf it makes thee monrnfulxi mean not after a wordly man ner; 
wherein we are apt naturally to exceed (for a s we are inordinate 
ia our love to the Creature, fo we are paffionate in our grief for 

Ver.4- T/jj rod and t h jlajf they com fort me. - z 9 

it) but after a godly (ort^ when upon the fenfe of our fins (thus 
provoking our lather to afflict and correct us with his rodjtherc 
arifeth a filial difpleafure with our fclves, and grief for offend- 
ing him. Jf a father fhould rebuke, and threaten, and itrike , 
and beat the child and he laugh at it, &c Do we in the dayes 
of our affliction thus humble our felves in the fight of God our 
father? falling down upon our knees, confeliing wherein we 
have tranfgrelfed and wandred, lamenting and bewailing our 
particular itrayings from his will, begging earneftly for recon- 
ciliation and Grace. Jarons rod wh.ch fmote the rock fetched 
out water, reach water,- ah, when did our hearts melt for our 
fins, relent.mourn, grieve (indeed) under our afflictions? This 
is a fad condition, Pharaoh can confe/Te, Ahab humble himfelf, 
yea Divelscan tremble, yet Chriftians do not. If afflictions 
do not make our fins to be our forrows, they will never prove in 
the iflfue to be our comforts. 

3. If it makes thee tobe 'Penitential : I take the word ftrift- Pcni 
ly , as converfant only about the proper effects of repentance, 
which are J r or faking of old finf, and a coarfe of new obedience, ff 
afflictions find thee in a wicked way, and leave thee (o • if they 
find thee proud, and leave thee not humble j nncleane, and 
leave thee notchaft-, earthly , and leave thee not heavenly ^ 
negligent of God, and leave thee not diligent and careful for his 
worship and fervlce, what comfort canft thou take by any affli- 
ctions > The Founder h At he aft thee in vain^ and rt probate fil- 
V*t majtft thou be called. That which the Lord fpake by the 
Prophet CO firttfttem, maybe juftly applied unto thee, IU- 
24,. 11. Her great [cum went not forth out ofher y her fcum ftiall 
he in the fife. V.13. In thy fit thine jft :\s Uwlwffe, bee mm ft 1 
have purged th e and thou fyafi riot ptcged^ Th.u fb'alt not be 
purge i fr:m thy filthinefle any m->re^ rid I h roc Cditfedm) fury 
Urtftnfin her. Bit cor.trariwife, it it be thus witn you, that 
the rod hath opened your eyes to fee your (ins, melted your 
hearts for them , wrought alio '^ you a hatred and forfaking, 
that iniquity is pu ged, and it is as the fire to the gold, reSnii 
and fcouring of yourdrofi* your pride is gone, your negli- 
gence, circled neiTe, unprofitablenefTe, &c. are gone. And 
like . the rod caufeth you now with D*v$d t to lea .».■• 

,Pf.l 1 10.71. and to kfcp hkW#*\ V.67. Or if 


~^Jq ~ fbj rod and thy ft aff they comfort me. Vc?4 

chat be verified on uswhicbGod promifeth,inij*,f^20.37,/\W// 
caufeyou to fafs under the rcd,& I will bring you into the bond of 
the Covenant. Happy is the time that ever Cod afflided us,and 
hath thereby thus taught us to make him to be our God , and 
his wayes to be our wayes ; nay, though it be but to bring our 
ftraying feet into his righteous paths again. 
More Fcui.ful. 4. If it makes thee more Fruitful : Our afflidions (which 
are compared to a rod) fliould in this be like ^Aarons rod • 
though the other rods did not, yet Aarons rod did bloflbm t 
Num.1 7*8. Behold the rod of Aaron for the hou/e of Levi was 
btidded^nd brought forth buds^nd bloomed bl<$zmr y and yielded 
Almonds. Affiidions befalling evil hearts (as water on a rock) 
are alwayes barren, but when they come in mercy , and end in 
comfort (as water on a Garden) they alwayes make the foul to 
bud, and bloflbm, and yield fruit. 2%ot only to bud y with a fo- 
lemn prcfeffion, that if ever God recover me, &c. nor only to 
bloflbm a while in fome (lighter ads of betterment, but to yield 
Almondsi(\.) to bring forth fruit indeed. The foul fills into 
more dofe and intimate communion with God , theconfcience 
grows more exad in walking with God, and more tender over 
tin, the heart is more jealous of it felf , the thoughts are mere 
on heaven, more fervent in prayer,more mortified to the world- 
and the affedions of love, defire, joy, delight, much more raif- 
ed to God and C hrift. Go through all the duties of your ge« 
ne*ralard particular callings, all are bettered by the rod- the 
perfon is become a better husband, or wife, or mafte^or parent, 
or child, or friend and acquaintance, &c. 

Doth the rod thus feed you} Mic.7.14. It is not Efficient 
that it fcourgeth you back into right paftures, but itmuftput 
you on in a more forward pace. If Phyfick bebleft to a man, 
how exceedingly doth it haften health ? and that health, what 
a colour \t puts into the face? andalfo an aptitude for fervice 
and adions. So is it with aftlidions if fandified, though it be 
fome comfort that they make us good, yet they prove moft 
comfortable when they make us more fruitful. Oh how thou 
mayeft then kift the rod which taught thee the way of life, and 
blelTetherod which caufed thee to mend thy heart and thy 
pace too. 


Ver.4. Thj rod and thy fi^ff they comfort me. 23 1 

Buttofliutupa!l,let noChnftian at any time, feeling this Vfe 4. 
rod of God upon him, faint or be dtfeouraged , do not queltion ^ r "*"<* 
Gods love or care. By this thou maicft know that he loves fsimandb: 
thee, that his rod is (thus) on thee, and that he hath yet are >i c ° ur »8 e <l- 
gard of chee,that his hand is upon thee for good. HetbAtfpareth 
the red hatcth kit child, Prov. 13.24. but he that lovcth him 
cbaftnetb him betimes. It u gcod for a man that he bear the y >kj 
in hit yonth y Lam. 3.27. I will fay no more to thee at this rime, 
but this onlyjhy foul needs Phy.lck as well as thy body. Search 
thy heart and wayes a little better , and thou wit fay, It wat 
high time that I Jh.tild be afjiicled. Yea, and call to mind the 
former times of afflictions, not one of them was needleflfeto 
thee, nor any one of them proved fruitlefTe to thee. Only feek 
much and ferioufly unto God, for we can take forth no Leflfon 
either by mercies or afflictions without his fpecial teaching. 
Nor be difcouraged though former afflictions have been fruit- 
lefTe- for as in the Preaching the Word, though many Sermons 
have been in vain, yet at length one comes which converts the 
foul • fo in afflictions, though many have been flight- 
ed , yet fome one may be blefled to thine everlafting 

P S A L. *14- 

And thy fiaffe they comfort me* 

YOU have feen what comfort D.ivid took b; the rod, now 
you are to fee fome more comfort which he takes by the 
ftaffofhs Shepherd. 

A Staff] That word is taken two waycs,eithcr, 
1. Properly^ov a fpecial part of material wood, ufed by usGen. jt. 1 
to walk with ^ or for the fhepherds, for the benefit and fafety 
of their flocks. 
.:. (JMetaphorictllj, For fome thing anfwcrable in ufe ani 


232 Thy rod and thy ft^ff they comfort me. Vcr.4. 

virtue to a ftaff; and thus in Scripture there is a fourfold accep- 
tion of that word : for either, 

i. It may denote^ commw prefervation of life, in which 
Eisk.4.i$. refpect breadis called tftaff, becaufe our life depends on it, and is 
upheld by it , as a weak man is upheld by his ftaff. 

2. It may import *»j7fr/o» who is of fpecial aid and ufe to 
the Commonwealth wherein he lives. In which refped the 

Jfa.j.i,i. ?"dge and the Prophet are called the flay zndft*ff for their abi- 
lity in dire&ing, ccunfelling,managing and fufteining the affairs 
of State for good. 

3 . It doth fometimes fignifie carnal and fruit left confidence , 
in which refped the King of 'Egypt (on whom the Ifraelites did 
rely and lean) is {tiled &ftajf t but withal , a brui(td reedy not 
ftrong enough for a body to reft on. 

4 Laftly, It doth fometimes alfo fignifie that fpecial care and 
defence which God hath over his people againft their enemie?. 
So is it taken in this place in allufion to the fhepherds ftaff : of 
which pedum P aft or ale there is a double life • • 

i. One is ProttClio Ovium , to fecure and defend the 

2. Another is CornBio Luporum, tor eprefle and offend the 
Wolves. Anfwerable unto which there is in God, fir ft % a 
wrathful proteclion over his flock and people ^ zndfecwdly^ a 
watchful comVtion and punifhing of the adverfaries who ( like 
Wolves) feek to break in, d'i'fturb, hunt and kill the fteep. Ei- 
ther of thefe doth afford unto the Church matter of comfort . 
the which I will draw forth in two proportions which I intend 
to difcuffe : 

i. That Gods watchful protection over hi* people is a ground 
offtnguUr comfort to them. 

2. That Gods wrathful correBUn of the adverfaries of his peo- 
ple ts alfo an occafion of cswfort. 
DoSl.i* I begin with the firft of thefe - viz. That gods watchful 
Gods \mchfa\p r <itec~ti:n over hie people is a ground offingular comfort to them. 
protedion over Look what comfort a /Wt^ is in the time of heat, or a place 
his pecple,is a of refuse is to a peribn hardly and ftraitly followed ^ or a covert 
ground of fi^f rom a °violent ftorm is to a Traveller, that is the protection of 
w them. 2 ° r God t0 ms ^ ervanCs an< ^ P e P**, for by all them is it fet forth in 
Jfa.q.6. And if you will perufe the fame Prophet, //4.41. v.io. 

Ver.4- T h roci An & ttyftaff the j comfort me. 2 S3 

13,14. you (hall plainly fee this divine prote&ion to be fet ouc 
as their lingular ilarT,and fupjrort, and comfort • Fear not IwiU 
hdp thee, &c. 

Two things only will I touch on, 

1 . What this Divine protection is > 

2. How it may yield comfort to the people of God? 

Queit. I. what divine prof e Eli on u } Why. divine 

Sol. I conceive of it thus, That it is a fpecial fart of divine Proicdionis. 
providence manifeflir.g tt [elfin an atlive care for the preserva- 
tion or fafe keeping of his people. It is all fummed up in th.U paf- 
fageof the Prophet, Ifa.31.15. The Lord tf Hojts will defend 
J ertifalen}, defending alfo he will deliver it , and faffing over he Divine Provi- 
VpM prejerve it. Divine providence (as converfant about the dencess con- 
Church ) refpefts either, TchurcbT 

1 . 1 he (rood which Gcd intends to communicate unto it. and it c ' c . 
may be called "Benediclion. The 500J Goi 

2. The evils which he intends to avert from it ; of which intends tocom- 
there are fevcral branches ; viz,. 1. Rtftriilion of 'evils , though mun : csce to ir, 
intended, yet from being executed. 2. Correction of evil men , 9 r tb . e evllhc 
which is the taking of them away, as Tharaoh, and Hamanand J-™^ ir s (5thcc 
Herod^Scc. 3. Detetlion^ which is a difcovering of their vile 1 y, 
plots and thoughts. 4. DireHion, which is an advifoe to his RcftriSiou t 
people, what lawful way to (hun the evils intended : Or elfe it cviIs or >. 
»s proteilion , which is nothing elfe but the upholding or fecur- C?" edlon ° 

• r n. c j ■ j 1 jfL j j r 1 e ,. evil men; or, 

ing act of divine providence in the midlr, and in defpight or all rj) itc ai n of 

malice and evil oppofition ; though the Waves be never fo un- their plotsjor, 

quiet, yet the (hip (hall bear up and ride it out ^ though the Direction what 

fire feems to be a very flame , yet the bufh (hall not be burnt ; JJ d ° > °. r > 

thoug the winds are very boiltrous, yet the ftars (hall (hint : ^^hem! 

Though the Wolves do howle and Lyons roar, yet the poor 

fheep and lambs (hall be in fafety : There is a (taflfe twixc the 

one and the other, as there was a valley twixt the camp of If- 

rael , and the Phihflines, or rather as there was a chttdztida 

pillar twixt the hoft of the Egyptians , and the hoft of the Ifrji- 


This Proteilion for the kinds and manner of it is t'.vo- This P - 
fold. cn ' or c ^ c ■ 

1. Immediate and fecret : Wherein the hand of God a- j n /i ™ nnfrof 
loneconfilts,and wherein his great prefence doth environ them, j min ^ irc w ^ 

H h and Su. 

234 5j? re ^ An & tfyfttff* l ' H 1 comfort me. Ver-4 

and compafs them as their fhield and buckler : ( Which is as a 
Bulwark :hat holds off the enemy.) 
M diarcsnd 2. LMediate and vifthle: Which appears in the fingers of 
yiiiUc. that hand, I mean the inilruments which God doth raife up for 

the welrare,and fafety,and defence of his people, (which are as 
the fouidiers in that bulwark)as Cyrus and Darin* of old, when 
his people were in captivity and that pious and famous ^mfiann 
tine t the great patron of Chriftianity againft Lftfaximintts^Lici- 
nus and other perfecutors, and many Chriftian Kings fince thac 
time, all which is implycd in, Rev. 12. 1 <5. The eanihelped 
the woman ( *. ) though there were floods of ev 1 intended a- 
gainft theChurch,and did break forth againft her , yet God did 
proted her by men on earth,by humane aid and diutance. 
^ S ^h* e<ai " Again it is either a prote^ion^vthich is 
Ordinary?' *' 0r ^ m U : Which is feenin the common adminift- ation 

of divine providence by effeds and ads in fecond caufes made 
ferviceable by a divine hand, for the fafety of the Church a- 
gainft the malice and breathings of evil men. 
fcttraordinary. 2 ' Extraordinary ; Which is declared in fome wonderful 
" and exceeding effecls , that even nature fteps afidc as it were to 
become ferviceable to their fafety, as in thofe wonders of E» 
gjpt^ and divifion of the red Sea, &c. 
Proteftion a- Again, Divine froteEiion againft evils is two fold, 
gainft evils,is, %\ Privative: In preventing and defeating of evils, mali- 
Privatwe. c ioufly intended, in putting by the thruft. Ta\e counjel and it 
Jhall come to mttght Efa.8.iO. Speafy the word and it /hall 
not ft and, this is evident in the defeat of "Pharaohs intentions 
for kilting of the male- children and in the fruftrating of Ha- 
tnans plots againft v the feKs , and Herods projed in if/limg of 
Chrift, Mat.2. andlikewifefor^7/*»gof Peter, AUs 12. 
Pofitive in fup- a. Pofitive in fupplying of ftrength and aid, either of Endn* 
plying of ranee, not* ithftanding all evil combinations., as the &//r£was 
Strength. kept upon the waves , and the Ifraelites in Egypt , and other 
Of endurance. Captivities, and the Church preferved in all the times of per- 
Or aid of De- fccution Of Deliverance, which comes partly by a dread that 
Iterance. God infufeth into whe hearts of the enemies^ partly by the 
countenance and ajfiftance, which he affords his Church by emi- 
nent and peculiar inftruments , making edids in the behalf of 
the Chrjftians •, partly by wer>rttlingevil entmies 9 forfecular 


Vcr.4* ?h rc ^ M&th)pff tbcy cowfort me. 2 3 5 

endsinrefpeft of thcmfelves, but for better ends i * of 

i , to fide with or to permit the Church qu c:ly to g on in 
the wot (hip of God. ^ Hawrh'sPro- 

gu (I. 2 How this divine protecYon againft evils oi 

.rTords comfort to the people of God ? 
Sol. It may afford comfort in many refpe&s, whether 
1 . You conlidcr the comfortable properties of this protect 
for it is of 

1. *A fupreme pretention : It is one thing for a privateaion. 
friend to undertake the protection of a perfon, and another' rbsfapcoM 
for the King and the Laws to protect a perfon. The former Proicfciani 
protection is corrective and weak and infufficient , it is altera- 
ble by a fupreme Power , but the hitter is fupreme and not to 
be queftioned or touched : now the protection of the Saints it is 
Supreme , they have the greateft King and the fundamental 
Laws on their fide , the Word cf God himfelf are for them : 
They are mine (faith Chriit of his Difciples, and the reft whom 
the Father gives unto him) and none Jb^ll take them out of mine 
hand, he fpeaksof the *5^ff/>, fo.10.2S. And he gives the rea- 
fonof it, verfe 29. My Father which gave them me it greater 
then all -, he doth not fay is ir.feriour or equal, but he \sgrea* 
ter* not then fome or molt of them , but then <*//•, and no 
man if able to plucky them out of my Fathers ha*:d, hedotll not 
fay, They would not pluck, &c. for they are ftill tugging and 
plucking, but do what they can they (hall not be able to pluck 
them out of my Fathers hand : If their fafeties were in the hands 
of men, men might then pluck them away , but no hand can be 
ftrong enough for Gods hand • the hand ofGod is greater then 
all, (.u) Too high and toojtrong. 

i- A Sufficient Trctetlion : Lower protections and defences A Suffic." 
are often multiplyed or elfe they cannot beafafety; for dan—f^:^ion. 
gers fometimes cannot be prevented without number The 
greater number containing in it the greater Itrength ; but the 
protection of the Church is fingle, and conlilts in Unity. Ever 
one God, and he alone is fufficient for the fafety of his people. 
This God delivers as a Cordial to Abraham againit all dangers 
and all fears, Fear not Abraham, I am thy /hie Id ; q d. Thy 
eyes may be caft upon the world, and thou maift meditate many 
dangers by reafon of the many evil perfons among whom thou 
dwdleft • But be not difcouraged, thou haft One to protect 

H h 2 thee 

236 Jhj rod and thy fiaf they comfort 


Vcr, 4 

A Tender P^ 
ltd ion. 

thee, I am thyjbteld, and chat is enough, for 1 am the Almighty 
or All-fufficient god. David hath a good pafTage in Pfal. 121. 
2. My help ccmcth from the Lord; and what a Loidishe? - 
who (faith hej made heaven and earth, this is enough. He 
who alone by his word only, was able to make the whole world, 
is not he (though alone) fufficient for t J >e fafety and protection 
of his people ? As you need no more then God to make you f 
and none eife but Chrift to redeem you > fo you need none elfe 
but God to protect and keep you. 

3. KTender Protection: No protection like that where the 
arms of defence feem to grow out of the affections of the defen- 
dant. If my child were in the arms of a Gyant, I fhouldnot 
conceive his fafety fo abfolute,asif he were in the arms of his 
mother-, for as much as affections are a more intentive and 
watchful guard, though the other be more able and ftrong. But 
where infinite ftrengch and unfpeakeable affections- both concur 
in aGuardianfhip , here is fafety unqueftionable. Now the 
Lord doth not only fpread his arms of power over his people, 
but holds them alfo faft in molt tender affections • he love* them 
above ail the people in the world, and is more to them then the 
mother to the child, and therefore his eye Hill watcheth over 
them, and he that toucheth them, toucheth the apple of hi* 

,4. A Faithful T^otetlion : Both for prefence and continu- 
ance. IfaProtector were never fo high for authority , great 
for power, fuftkient for aid, tender for affection, yet if he were 
negligent, if fometimes he did come with a ftrong guard , and 
at another time leave me naked • the times of his prefence 
would not afford me fo much comfort,as the times of his abfence 
would occasion in me fear and difcom fort. But it is not fo with 
the Lord, who as he is a moft Efficient and tender protection , 
fo is he a moft faithful and attending protection. There is not 
any one article of time w'lerein his eyes are not cpen to keep 
his people, Pfal. 1 21.4. Beheld, he w£? kjepetb Ifrael (hall nei- 
ther {lumber nor (leeo (every other keeper may fleep, nature re- 
quires it to keep himfelf by fleep, that he may keep us by wak- 
ing; yet here's time ofdanget^ for our fifecy fleeps when our 
keeper fleeps) but the Lord never fleeps, (J. ) He is ever awake 
and watching, and therefore he a ids, v£. The Lord /hall pre- 


A Faithful 

Vcr.4 • fty rod and thy flaff they comfort me, 23 7 

fcrve thy going out aid coming in from this time fs*th ami even 
for evermore. There is noc any one danger or evil, be it never, 
fo Itde and inobfervable by us, and be it never fo great and Ter- 
rible unto u>, but he is alwayes prcfent with us to guard and 
fecure us - y whether the dangers be fo great as they do refpeft 
the hazarding of our lives , or fo little as they do refpeft 1 he 
a the fair of cur bead, yet concerning both, or any o- 
ther there is a perpetual providence to proted and look after 
us, and your (held is itill about you thus, although new dan- 
gers (hould ari'e, or the old fhould yet continue, yet as the 
Mountains are rcuni about ferufaltn^fo the Lord is round av>.: t 
his people from henceforth even for eve*, Pf. 125.2. 

2. Secondly, It mult needs be a comfort to have the ftarT of^?^ 
Gods protection thus to preferve and keep us. If you alfo con- * ! s * 
fider the iff ills and operations of it , v. g. I. Either tnep r0 team. 
crufringo} evil in the \X>omb, making of it abortive in the con- CruQiinjcril 
ception. 2. Or the fruftrtting of the evil fr. m failning upon 1° t!l - w 

us : that the (Word which is whet (hall not enter, and the fnare Pr ? j rtt *"S *■ 
that is laid fruil not catch. 3. Or the retorting of evil */•» R tt0 rtint of e- 
the contrivers of evil .■ that they (hall catch themfclvcs andvilupmthe 
intanglethemfelves with their own devices and trapps^.Or the contrivers. 
converting of all thofe evils to the good of the Church; that Convc 
the malice of evil men (hall onely drive the fhip and not link ir,alicogoc 
fcoure the mettal and not confume it • drive the fheep together 
butnotlofe them, make the Church better and prepare them 
for greater mercies; all thefe afford much and lingular com- 
fort, &c. 

3. Thirdly, It muff needs he a comfort to have Cjodto be ^Gxis prwt&i- 
comfort, to have G;d to be our Staff of protection , whether jou ° n « cojjfort- 

1. The malice of evil men, which is deep and implacable: ^j 

there are none in the world, whom evil men do hate with that \ f. m3 i,- cc f 
mortal hatred as they do the godly : WitnefTe c *Vs mnr-eviln 
tbering of Abtl^ and Sauls Peeking the life <*f.ZXtW,&c. as 

the Shepherds were an abomination to the Egyptians, fo the 
fhccpof Chrilt are an abomination to wicked perfon c • Hi th.it 
u upright in the rvaj is abominatum to the Vftched , Prow 
29. 27. Th: - 

i, Thcp'^ir of evil men \ Gere ally they have the ftrongcr evil men. { 


"^Tg 7Z7 r el and thy Jt-aff thtj cow fort me. Verlj. 

arms of fkih to draw out their [word of malice and hatred. 
The Beaft in the Revelation had the horns and the crowns ^ mod 
of earthly powers and authorities •, ten horns and ten crowns, 
Rev. 1 3 1. 
Th* number of 3* ^he number of evil men\ They are as the Philifiimno 
cvif men. the Ifraelites army; as the fand of the fea fhore to a little 
herd or flock of fheep. Take away all the Infidels, the profef- 
fed Atheifts and enemies of God and Chrift, and alfo the fecret 
enemies, falfe Prophets, hereticks, &c. Eliah cries out lam 
left alone y aad there was but feven thoufand of the hundred 
thoufand which clave unto the Lord. 
^ a . r 4. The vrattice of evil men which is onely to devifemif- 
of cvil'mcn! cmc ^ an( * t0 ^ ooC againft the righteous. Let us f mite Jeremiah 
with the tongue* lit w take the houfes of God in pcjfeffion. Eithet 
lying difgraces, or foul obloquies, or troublefom fnares, or 
fomead of cruelty or other is hammering and contriving. 
All which is a 5* *s4M **hichis a delight to them. It is "ihovisyov they are 
dclifchc unto doing that which their fouls delight in y *sfba 9 fi veodd vee have 
them, it, that which they prefer above all, when they are injurioufly 

contriving againft and handling of the people of God. Now 
muft it not be a comfort to have a Protector and a ftafT to up- 
hold us, to help us againft fuch a violent and unappeafable ma- 
lice, which intends nothing but mifchiefs, and thar in the worft 
and greateft kind, (namely, not only :o take away our lives, but 
alfo the truths and word of God which are the ft..rT of our 
fouls and comforts, &c .) efpecially if we corifider alfo our 
own impotency who are of our felves a weak, little compa- 
ny, &c. 
„ r But to make a little application of this to our fetves. Ts the 

'* Lord the y?;z/f of his people in the days of evil, is he their de- 
fence, their Protection ? 
Then the con- !• Then firft-, The condition of the Church is never de- 
iitionof the fperate nor forlorn : We ufually fix our eyes on the 
Church is n:- calamities of the Church and on the enemies of the Church , 
verdtfperate. an( j on ^ wea k ne f s f tne Church , but if we look not 
on the protection of the Church , on the fafetie* of 
the Church, on the Shepherds ftarTe, but onely on the wolves 
fiercenefs and clamour • on the floods, but not on the Eagles 
wings which were given unto her to mount up and fly, Rev. 1 2. 


t en 

Vcr.4. Tbj rod and thy flaffthej comfort me. lyj 

we mult needs be difcouraged. Either we do not confider that 
the Church hath a God to be her Guardian, or elfe we dot; E 
know what it is for one to have God himfelf to be his fhrTand 
proce&on. The ^Difciples were fafe enough when Chrift was 
in th flip j and people arc fecure enough who have the Lord to 
better Keeper and Protedor. 

2. NayfeCOndly, ThQCGnditittt of thepople of Gtd is mo^e Th . ^.. . 
fafe and fecptre then of any people. Take all the wicked on the f q j, p. 
earth in all their ft.ite and power and number, the/ cannot alio iimotebfi 
of them (hew fuch a fhield for their fafety as th;- poorer* godly '••" 0* >ny 
per fan can. They can fhew fwords and targets and bowes,P :o P c « 

and Devils, and malice, and powers, but none of them can fhe.v 
a God to be their Prote&or. If powers be a bctcer guard then 
weaknefs ; if wifdome be a better guard then folly- if inri- 
nitensfs, then reftraincdnefs -, if immutability then mortality', 
if God, then the creature •, the condition then of the Church 
(which hath the Lord God to be her Staff of protect. on) is 
mo ft fure and fafe. 

3. Then let the people of Qod retrain fear. If a man were 

in the midft of the fea,amongft the naked waves, he might Let the people 
have juft: caufe to fear • but being in the midtt of them, and in? iGaJ rcftuin - 
themiditof a ftrong Ark he needs not to fear- though there 
be many enemies yet if the Cattle be ftrong and nrm, vc I fa: 
5 1 . 1 2, 1 3 . Who art thopi^ that thon Jhoulaft be afraid of a man i 
andforgettefl the Lard thy Maimer that hath flretched out the 
heavens^ and I rid the foundations of the earth? Two Argu- 
ments he here prefents why we are afraid of men, and the evils 
that they can do : 

One is that we do net confider the weaknefs of mxn % that he 
isbut^mjiand muft die v.iz. 

Another is , that we do forget the fre itn'ffe of God, we do 
forget him in his great power (who did /? etch tut the heavens^ 
cxc.) and in his neer n lation t& m, that he is our maker, q d. 
if you did rightly know and believe the great neffe of your God 
you would not fear man. If you knew what a power he fhew- 
ed in the making of you, and of the heaven and earth, you 
fhould confider the Lord more and take heart, it is an tpf 
iible truth chac the belt people ahvayes live under the belt pro- 

4- \ 

2 ^o Thy rod and thy ft aff they cow fort me. Vcr.4. 

"" 4. Live by Faith: Upon this that God is your Staff, and 

Live by Faith. t ^ aC ^ e \ % y 0ur prote&or ; let it not be a meer notion but make 
itanunqueftionable truth, put your feai of faith unto ir,andin 
your diftrefles or troubles fly unto the Lord for his protection. 
So did Jehcfaphat when the great multitude of the children of 
ts4mmonwA CMoah, and Mount Seir came againft him* O 
cur God (faith he) Wilt thou not judge them, for we have no 
might againft this great company that ccmeth againft ti4> neither 
know "toe what to do, but our eyes are upon t hee. Here was a time 
of great danger and now his faith did exert it felf, partly by re- 
nouncing all humane confidence and defence, we have no 
might (.i.) of our felves alone -, partly by feeling on divine 
ailiftance but our eyes are upon thee, refting on God, and ex- 
pecting aid .from him. Thus did T>avid often when his ene- 
mies confulted and imagined againft him. Pfal. 62. 3. then he 
charged his foul to look up "and to wait onely on God v. 5. and 
,. ,£. in ^ e gi yes tne rea f° ns °f * c i n v * <>• & 7. He onely is my rock, and 
Pfal. 61. 233,4. m J falvation, he is my defence, I [hall not be moved, in God is 
Pfal. 64.1.1. & my falvation and glcry • the rccl^ of my ftrength and my re- 
Pfal, tf-*>*£'fuge is in God. And hereupon he exhorts all people in dangers 
v.8. Truft in him at all limes ye people, pour out your hearts be- 
fore him. God is a refuge for us. Selah. 

M . Confiderafew Motives for this and then I fhall quit the 

Motif es. , A 


It is all one to 1 ^ t * s a ^ or>e t0 ^° aVe n0 P rcte ^^on, as not to ufe it : What is 

have no ptoto the ftrong rock if the conies run noc into them being hunted > 

aion 5 andnot r what is the ftrongeft Oftle if not ufed when the enemies 

w ufc U. come p or wn at i s a |i the arm f q oc j s ftrength, if we want an 

hand of Faith, or put notour hand of Faith on Gods arm of 

power in time of our di ft rede ? Gods powerful protection is 

in Scripture compared fometimes to a Shield, fometimes to a 

R c k^ fometimes to a Caftle, fometimes to a ftrong Tower : 

what are any of thefe for actual defence if not made ufe on > 

The name of the Lord is a ftrong Tower ( but then Solomon adds) 

the right eovu runneth into it, and is fafe. It is a ftrength in it 

fejf, but not a fafety,unlefs we run into it : yea, though the 

perfon be righteous (and he it is to whom fafety is rromifed ) 

yet muft he by faith run into this Tower if that he would have 

fafety granted unto him. 

2. A 

Ver.4. Tfy rodandthyftaff theycomfort me. 241 

2. A believing on thi« Staff, a leaning on it by faith (hall b? He that leans 
fore to find xtftretchedout for good. Our protection it is a flafT, u P° n «hU ftaft 
not in mans hand but Gods, and when Faith leans on it, it will Jj*^£jf £| 
then walk and work for the believer, P1al.33.2c. He is our help f or "j OC d.° 
and ourfhield. V.2I. Our hearts fiall rejoyce in him^ and we 
have trufled upon his holy name. Our Fathers trufled in thee 
(here was "Faith ) and thou didjl deliver them. Pfal 22.4. cr z/. 5. 
They cried unto thee and Were delivered, thj trufled in thee and 
•were not confounded •, "David found it thus often for his own 
pr.rt ; Did not Jacob find it fo when his brother met him with 
four hundred men ? Did not J ehoftiphat find it fo , upon pray- _. 
ingand trufting, that the valley of Bicha was turned into the 1 i° x n 10 .%. 
valley of Berachah? Be confident that Faith will either keep 
the fire from you, or keep you in the fire, as the three children in 
Daniel. It will either find a hand to hold off evil or to uphold 
you in the times of evil. 

3. If you could truft on the Lord for his protection in times N . ton i - u ^_ 
of dangers not or.ely fafetj would befal j/ou, but much other ty but much o- 

IL °K v - S* l ^ cr * oocl w ^ 

Fxr/?, It would be an excellent means to l^eep up your fin befallui by 

cerity -. Wh^ts the rcafon that many in times of dangers, fly V uftm ?ji_ 

r n 1 u -^ r j r r It wculd be a 

outf> ftrangely, either omit fome duty, or commit fome imor m(3nstokcep 

other ? Is it not becaufe they are diftruftful on God ? they u p out finccri- 

exa't not bis power of prote^ion, they lean not on his ftaff y ij. 

they do not believe than God will proted them, they do not 

oppofe it againft all the plots and attempts of evil men. But 

if we were latisfied of Gods protection alone, and did truft to 

it, we would keep on our path, neither bend to the right hand 

nor to the left, but would keep on in the good and fafe way.The 

way is Gods way, and being in his way I am confident of his 

protection, &c. 

Secondly , It would be an excellent means to keep up tran- It would kerf 
cjuility : All the turbulent divifion that is in our arTe&ion<;,doth U P tranquility, 
principally arife from the divifion which is in our minds, iVe 
have double minds ^and therefore have doubtful thoughts and fear- 
ful affe El ions . A man is under the power of every mans power 
and of his threats, and of his evils, whiles not fixing his heart 
on God; protection- juft like a (hip in the midit of tbefea 
without an anchor, toiled with every wave and every wind ,bat 

I i a be- 

24* Thy rod and thjftaff, they comfort we. Vcr.4 

f — — ■ ■ " : — ■ 

a believing, feeling on, or leaning on theftafF of Godsprote- 
dion breeds a fweet harmony and peace. David thought fo 
in PfaLlH.J. He {hall not be afraid of evil tilings , hit he«*t 
is fixed tmfting in the Lord y \.%. his heart is eftablifhed he 
fhall not be afraid. When a man by Faith feeth him who is in- 
vifible, and finds him who is omnipotent encompaffingh.m 
roundabout with his promifes, win. his gracious providence 
therecanbenofufficicntcaufe of perturbation unto him. In 
two cafes we may inquietnefs and patience poffeis our fouls . 
One is when no evil is neer us : Another is, when a greater poTtoer 
and defence is neerer to us then the neer* ft evil can be David 
was on a fudden purfued by \dbfalorr. his fon, and in very great 
danger, what doth he at this time /he prayes Pfal. 3 4. / tried 
unto the Lord • and he believes, v. 3 . Thou O Lord a>ta Shield 
for me t and hereupon comes tranquility into his foul, v. 5. / 
laid me down and flept^ I awaked (or the Lord fuftained m?. 

Thirdly^ It would be a good means to keep up conftancy • 
h would kefp Q ur perfeverance in the a&s of piety doth (ingularjy de-end on 
p on ancy. our dependanceon Gods fidelity and power, on the fufficiency 
of his ftr^ngthand afiiftance. If I have him fure to my foul 
and to my body, why fliould I be daunted, or dagger, or fall 
away. That fouldier may well abide the field who fights un* 
der an invincible fh eld, and is ever armed With an unconquer- 
able protection. 

Fifthly s But a word of Caution to all this , and then an 
*f you will ^end. If you will find this ftarT of protection againft dangers 
find this ftaS"* an d evils, be advifed, To keep in GodtWayes: Shields of Sai- 
Keep°in Gods vat i° n hang not in the paths of Tranfgrefiion : there you may 
wyes, i find Gods fword againft you, but never (hall you ^nd his ftaff 

for you. As Sancf uaries reach not to all places but are confined 
to fuch a circuit of ground/o Gods defence and protection ex- 
tends not to us if we go beyond holy ground, I mean, U our 
feet carry us to paths chat are not holy. 

? 3 A 1} 

Vcr.4* Tfy r6 ^ andthfflajf they comfort we. 24? 

P S A L. 1\. 4. 

And thy jlaffe doth comfort me. 

YOuhave fecn the firftllfeof the Shepherds ftaff which is 
for protection and defence in refpeft of the fheep , now I 
proceed to the fecond Uie thereof which is for fence and corre- 
tlion in refped: of the wolves which are adverfaries to the fheep, 
from which aifo David gathers comfort : whence it may be ob- 

That Gods corrective fiaff of the adverfaries of his people 2 T>ccJ. 
sffords caufe of comfort unto them. Gods corrective 

Here two things are to be fuppofed, vi*» fbff of the 

I. That the people of God have adverfiries, therefore aresdverfaries of 
they compared to the fheep among/} the Wt^/, and the /////> hi8 P :0 P lcis 
among the thorns, and to the rcr/[~ amidft the waves ; P eru ^for U tto°them m " 
the hiftories Sacred and Ecclefiaftical and you ftiall find it fo, Two t hin^$" to 
even from Abel to this very day ,fecret adverfaries, or open ad- be fuppofed. 
verfaries, or both. The Serpent and Foxes : the Dragon and Evil men arc 
the Wolves. *^\gT*° 

2. That as their hearts and powers are ft retched out again ft ^ e n ° God - $ a- 
the people of God, fo the ftaff of Gods powerful providence is &a ioft them, 
ftretched out againft the adverfaries ofhu people-, and that efpe- 
cially three wayes. 

1 . Exprejfive : By way of expreffion •, thus you may fee By thfea:ninf 
this ftaff walking in every threatning which God hath fpoken.of them, 
His threatning is a holding up of his ftaff : that it (hall not be 

well with the wicked, and that he will bathe his fword in blood, 
and make it drunk^ with the blood of his adverfaries, to whom 
he will repay vengeance and recompence them to their faces and 
that he will bruife them in pieces with a rod of iron. 

2. ReprejJIve : Which is an holding of the adverfaries of his By csftinj; la* 
people (as we fay) at the (taffsend, by (lopping of their fury pediments ia 
and mjedirg r ra.fing fuch arguments or accidents which do chcir w * y# 
reprefs and hold off che adverfary from infulcing, &c. Ifa. 59. 

19- When the tntmy (hallcomtin likf a flood, the Spirit of the 

I i 2 Lord 

2 44 Tb} rod and thy fiaff they comfort me. Vcr.4 

Lord fhalllijt up a ftandard agaiufi him. Thus was it when 
Sennacherib threatned Judas and Hez,ekiah, he was pluckt back^ 
and when David was hunted by Saul , Saul was called home* 
So by (fonftantims means were the perfections ftop~ 
By Paniihment ?t <DepreJfive t which is the laying of it on ; when the Lord 
stoth by judgments and punilhments chaftife the pride and ma* 
lice of the adverfaries of his people. Not only conferve his 
own people , not only fruftrates the plots of wretched men % 
but alfo confounds and deftroys them. Thus did he to Pharaoh 
and his hoft, purfuing his flock and people of lfrael y his flaff 
was on him , his judgment, he overwhelmed him and his hofi i* 
the red Sea. So likewife to Sifera and fabiu, Korah y Dathan v 
andAbiram? to Haman the adverfary of the Jews, to the 
adverfaries of Daniel, to Herod the adverfaryof the Church s 
who was eaten up of Worms , to Pilate the adverfary of Chriflv 
who deftroyed himfelf, to- A* tut the enemy of the divinity of 
Chrift, whofe bowls fell from him _fo to Julian through 
whofe heart an arrow (truck from heaven ; fcarce any one of 
the perfecuted Emperours , who went off from the Stage of 
the world,without fome ftrange difeafe or end. 
Tbree circum- There are three Circumftances obfervable of Gods punifh- 
ftanees obferva ing of the adverfaries of his people. 

bI * *. n G ° ds P** « 1. Thztthough every individual adverfary be not ft ruck, yet 
nHhingadrerfa-^^ the mo ft eminent are attained. "Poena adunurn, Terror 
Thiugh every ^ omftes r This is his mercy to warn the reft by the punifhment 
adverfary be not of fome. 

ftrucfc 3 ufually 2. That gods judgment doth not alwayes at frefentfall upon 
tkcTiicftemi- t hem y yet in the event it fball ; it is rtot fpielAj executed; he. 
Though iud«- ^ ot ^ not ^Ivvayfis prefently ftrike, where yet he intends affuredly 
mentdo not at to wound, This is his patience. 

prefcat fall on j. That his judgments on them when they do light are ujually 
ibem, yetine-^yy fearful and terrible ; fuch as fill the world and caufe 
Wo*"^- dread and terrour: They do not go off in the ordinary way 
manwdolithtjO^P 110 ^ 11611 ^ buC are frgmatized with a fear of wrath,. 
they arc ufual- which (hall make their names odiousto all pofterity , 7/427.7. 
l#y«y (niialHath he fmitten him as he J mote thofe tkjtfmete him y PfaL 58. 
1 a He fall ta\e them away With a Whirlwind , and in his 

3. That 

Vcr.4 - T6j rod and thy jlajf they comfort me. 2 -t 5 

3. That this executing of judgment on the advtrfaries af- Th-sex cu> 
fords comfort to Gods people : So the Scriptures abundantly de- inj oi i u *" 
Clare, /y*/. 58. lO. The righteous pjall rejoyce when he Jetth com ^ r[C0 
the vengeance , Af /W/ bm/Z> At/ feet in the bloid of the wit hd t God* peoplr. 
Rev.iS.zo. Speaking of the diftruction of Baby ion, faich the 
Spirit; rejoyce over her thou heaven , and ye holy ApoftUsand 
prophets , for God hath avenged yon on her. Pfal. 1 19. 5 2. / 
remembred thy judgments of old , *>^ tat'* comforted my (elf. 
And we r*ad of fpecial rejoycings by the Church of Cod up- 
on the definition of their enemies. Mcfes Song was penned 
wpon the occafion of T>h4-raohs drowning, and Deborahs Song 
upon the deftruftion of Sifera y and the fewes feflival upon the 
deftrncrion of Haman^ and Davids 18 h . Pfalm, upon his d:li- 
verance from the hand of all his enewes. „ . 

But how far forth, and in what refpeils Gcds fumfbments ^^i'tWh^ 
and judgments on the adverfari s of his people may afford judgments on 
unto them matter of com f urr^ this is very dif^utable. idrafariei 

Scl. I think it may in fome meafure be thus refolved, matter of con- 

1. The Judgments of God on them may be confidered two ? r V° us ' 

. / & J Judjmtnrs en 

wayes, cither ^ iSSflii 

y^/ wffr and extreme miferUs : Thus we are not to take may be con- 
comfort by reafon of them on any man Kce/fs^/J*, a rejoycing GtfcreJj 
in the evil of another, is a very evil rejoycing. The common na A 
cure wherein ail men are bound together, commands pity, and r 
forbids delight in mifery. Religion bids us to do no evil, and 
nature forbids us to rejoyce in evil. 

As expreffions of Divine juftice. Though I would not re- Or, as crpref- 
joyce to fee a per f on executed, yet I may rejoyce to fee the Lav? hons of divine 
executed. So far forth as judgments on evil men are the arrefts J uitice - 
of the juit'ce of God, declarations of his truth and righteouf- 
nefie, as they are the vengeance which he executes, it is lawful to 
take comfort. 

2. The Judgments of God on them may be confidered cither as, ° r [hcv mj r 
A dilution oj their perfor.s ,or, Asadi^f' 

tA diffoluti»n ofthtir rvicked*e$e. by which God hath been J t heirpenbns 
fo much dishonoured, and probably had been more difhonou-o cf their 
red uponafurvival. So far as it is a common calamity inci- wickednciic 
dent to nature to be lick and die, I am to exprefle no rejoycing, 
but fo far as the difTolucionofthe natural Union, infers with ic 


As mccr anl 
x remc mile* 

246 Th r *d An * l h ft a ff f he] co mfert me* VeT? 

the extindion of preternatural wickedaefle, and an expiration 
ofdiflionouragainftGod, I may be glad and take much com- 
fort. Comfort , not that the man is come to his end • but 
comfort, that the wickdnefte of the Wicked is came to a* 

Orttwymaybc 3. Thirdly^ The Judgments of God on them may be confr. 

confidcred as, dered either as, 

A PtrfonalRu- j . A p er {onal Ruine. 

ADctfrinal 2 * ^'Ootlrinal Warning. 

Warning, So far as it is but ruin and deftruftion I mud fit ftill and leave 

the perfons to God^ but fo far as divine flrokes on ioate wicked 
men may prove exeraplary inftruc'tions toother wicked men, 
that they (hall hear t and fear , and nt £o,on any We 4gai»fi the 
godly , but feeing the judgments on others, turn from the fame 
fins which might pull down the fame judgments^ oo far may I 
take comfort and rejoyce that the wounding of fome is the 
healing of many ; though not immediately in the everfion of 
fome, yet occafionally,as this proves a means for the converfion 
of others. 

Or they may 4. Fourthly^ The Judgments of God on the adverfaries of 

be taken his people, either are to be taken, 

Formally* or, F^mally ', As it is a grievous punifhment and removal of mer- 
cies to many. 

Redundantly. Redundantly, As fome excellent mercy may refult or arife 
thereupon to the (heep « <r Church of Chrift. 

Though I dare not cake delight to fee any mans confeience 
racking and pulling him like hell, or the vengeance of God 
wounding rf him in ..error, and like a whirlwind, carrying him, 
&c. Yet as upon thi* 'eftru&ion there doth arife mercy and 
good to the C hurch , nat it now (upon the removing of the 
Impede ) obtains tncrf? freedom, countenance,protedion,peace 
and encouragement n, and to the true worfhip of God ; I 
may both be comfened and rejoice. When, Ad. 12.23. Herod 
was e*.trn up 'efworms t V.24. the Word of Qod grew and multi- 
plied ^ The Chu- ''-jdrtft'. f*Vv*is edified in the comforts of 
the H ly Ghofl, • i walked h he fear of the Lord , Ae\ 9.3 I. 
Now it is a juft and lawful c*. on of rejoycingand comfort, if 
God himfelf be pi a fed (th< 1 h it be in a way of judgment to 
others) to m3ke way for a i^ore calm, and fafe, and free oppor- 

Vcr.4« Thy rod and thy /laffthcy comfort me. 2^7 

tunity of his own fcrvice unto his ($vn people. 

5 Fifthly , The Judgments on wicked men may be considered O thev may 
either, Ab/o/utelj, in themlelves for they are mala trifliu. /,- bccoofiicrcdi 
terpretative/j , as they are tcfti monies of Gods fpccial provi- Ajl0u c ^ or > 
dence and care over his Church , Chat he is fenfible of their ia- t | f 2? c V 
juries, and burdens, and pities their dutrefTes, and will not fuf- w 
fer the rod of the wicked al wives te lie on the back of his fer- 
vant>, but in their deliverance declares and minifefb his Cove- 
nant of mercy, and truth, and power. Thus as the Ifraelitet 
when God remembred their bonda ;e and fent Mofes to deliver 
them, they bowed the head and n> or flipped lb may any of the 
people of God ble/Te the Lord and rejoice that he remembers 
his Covenant, and them in the low eft ate. Th >ugh not for 
the meerafti&ions of others absolutely confide-ed, yec for the 
conviction of others hereby, that God doth not forfake his peo- 
ple, but know their fouls in adveriuy, and will beneer and 
faithful, and fhew himfelf ft rong in the behalf of them whofe 
hearts are upright before him. Hence that of the Pfalmiit, Pf 
916 The Lord is known by the judgment Vphich he execHtetn : 
Wicked men do fwell, and rage, and exalt themfelves , and go 
on as if there were no God but themfelves , or as if there were 
not a God who refpeded and lookt after them that fear him ; 
but when this God (hall 3 rife to judg the nations, and once be- 
comes terrible to the people, and lifts up the poor from the 
dung-hill, a ad magnifies himfelf in the protection of his people , 
and confu.ion of their adverfaries •, now he is known in his 
power to be above a II, and in his juftice to recompence evil to 
the wicked, and in his orach in keeping covenant for ever with 
his own people. See Pfaf.$).l 3 . C^nf urns them in wrath % con- 
fume r ■ n t ■■.;• ; ' -n n not be , and let them ItnoW thM God ru- 
le th in Jacob nn the *nj; oftbi tath. Selah. 

6. Laftlv, T[iis ftarTo judgment laid on wicked men, miy be O; Itawy b: 
looked 0.1 cither as an inc host io ft $fmiferj tewicktdmen^ which c ^ nlK T r '7 
we may look on with pitiful eyes. Or an inchoation of Redemption ox f ofmifcr* co 
to£o-d mm, on which we may look with joyful hearts : for e- tricked aiensor, 
very judgment of God %ti the wicked advcrfiries, is an allured An lactation 
teftimony of a morefevere wrath to follour,add it is an infallible affcedemp i 1 
pledge co die £odly , of their final and complete redemption , t0 ^ oi ma - 


248 Thy rod and thy ftaff they comfort me. Vcr.4. 

from all oppofite malice and powers feared either in men or 

And thus have you heard what this ftaff of Correction and 
Judgment is, and on whom it falls, and in what refpe&s the 
itrokes thereof affords matter and occafion of comfort to the 
people of God. It now remains that I make fome Application 
f of this, and fo conclude. 
-ru- In the firft place, It mayferve for wonderful amazement and 

{kike terror in- terrcr t0 r ^ e adverfaries of Gods people On whom they lay load 
tothe s.lvcrfa-inailexpreffions of malice. Their hearts are againft them, 
rksofGods and their counfels are ftill projecting againft them, and their 
people tongues (like (harp rafors and fwords) are whet againft them 

in all fcandalous, ignominious, virulent, difgracefui reproaches ^ 
and their hands are againft them in all the Orength and wayes 
that can be imagined for their utmoft fubverfion and mine. But 
ftay .' hear what the Lord faith, 7/^.3.14,35. what mean yon 
that ye be*t my people to pieces , and grind the faces of the poor} 
The Lord will enter into judgment with you. The Lord is Vvife 
in heart and mighty inftrength. ftho hath hardr.ed himfe/f againfi 
him and hath proffered} faid fe& 7 ch 9.4. The fame in fome 
fort is true of tbe people of Gcd.whc ever hardned his heart a- 
ga:nft them and profpered } Fo tkeir redeemer is mighty, and 
he Jha II plead their caufe with thee, Prov.23.11. 'Tis true, there 
may be no man to plead their caufe, but yet there is a God that 
'will do it , who is greater in power and more terrible in judg- 
ment. Confider, 
God will cer- It £f* will ce tainly ple«d their caufe. He hath not only faid 
tainly plead the j t ^ ut Covenanted it ; and riot only bound his word with truth, 
"iflc k uc with an Oath,that be will judge in the behalf of hs fervants. 

pC ° P ' If the adverfaries of Gods people repent not, they are as fure to 

be ftruck with judgment in this life, or elfe to be damned hereaf- 
ter, as fure as God is C od 
God will pkal 2 « The Lord Will p faraf With them in wrath and fury, I think 
with their enc- of all the finners in the world, there are none fo extremely abo- 
mies in wra.h minable to God as 1 he adverfanes of his people ; for indeed they 
and fury. are the moft darig wretches and defperate, that dare through 
the people of God, even to fight againft God himfelf. And 
however punifhmer.t may either be omitted or remitted to o- 
thers, yet with thefe the Lord will deal in fire and burning, in 


Vcr.5. Ify red and thy fl/ijftbcy cemfort we. 245? 

the zeal of his wrath, and with devouring ttmpeib. Thiy /hull 
dr\t\oftke very dregs of hu fury , aid he w HI (Ujb their, in pieces 
like a potters vtffcl. Hiftories do record Tome vefligiu and pre- 
faces of this on wicked adversaries even in this life • what pecu- 
liar rxd myfteriocs difeafes, flaming and racking their fpirits and 
joynts or rotting their bowels? Or elfe what furpailing ven- 
geance h.th Jig!. ted on the confeiences of them, to the cafe 
whereof they have endeavoured to rent out their own fouls } O 
then / what is that blacknefs of darknefs, that river of brimfton 
kindled by the breath of the Lord ; that everlalting blacknefle, 
thofe flames of fire, that unconceivable jud b ment which is 
refcrved for them in the loweft regions of Kell here- 
after / 

3. ArJhowfuddenly the Lord may awake to the judgment , How h ^ "{'" 
what ore wicked adverfary can tell ? That the enemies of the^J^ * m ° 
Lord (hail perifh, it is unqueftionable • and in the ufual difpen- ]U d imcnc . 
fation of divine juftice on earth, this we may obferve, That the 
Execution thereof (when it prefents it felf) is both great and 
ipeedy. Even when the adverfaries are triumphing and crying 
Peace, peAce, then Cometh fudden diftrutlion. Rev. 18.8. Her 
plagues /ball come in one day^ nay, in one hour. Ver. 10. Death t 
and mourning.ar.d famine , and [be [hall be utterly burnt ^fithfre y 
for ftrong it the Lord rvhojudgeth her. 
Therefore let us fear and take heed leaft any way either fecretly 
or profefTedly, by word or deed we play the Wolves againlt the 
(heepofGodspafture. Their Shepherd hath aihffof iron: 
it is in his own hand, and it will be uVetched out againlt you. ]f 
yauwillbe adverfaries toGodspeople,a(Turedly the Lord wilbe 
an adverfary toy oa, yon fhall never go offunpunifhed, but the 
Lord w'll certainly judge you, and that with foreft vengeance. 
If he fhould ftnke thee whiles thou art plotting againit the juft, 
or acting againft his people, what a difmal account halt thou 
to make before him ? Well! repent and take the counfel of 
•p/'/rfffjwife, Have thou nothing to do with thai juj} man • or 
t\fcGaMalie!s counfel, Fight not again ft God. 

Secondly, Here is yet c , : in fort to the people ofGcd^ that he hath Vfi 2 
zftaff'y not only to kjttf >f}\ but to chafti^e their adv. rfat />/, be Comfort to the 
they never (o great, and never fo many, and never fo fubtil, lt p:o P !cof G ' d - 
falls out oft times that they have none on earth to right them, 

K k to 

250 Thy redandthjflaff, they comfort me. Vcr.4 

to ftand for them,to judg for them.In thePrimitive perfections, 
how at once didtheir adverfaries accuie and condemn them? and 
they had none for many years amongft thefons of men to hear 
their cries, or to refped their apologies. But yet here is a 
ftaffof comfort, that there is a God that regards them, will 
hear them, will judge for ihem, and will overthrow all the ad- 
verfaries of Truth and righteoufneflfe : he will be known by the 
executing of 'judgment y and every man (hall fay, Verily there is 
a regard for the righteous : verily he is a God that j fidget h in the 
earth, Vfr\ 58.11. 

Aie,but the objetl. Yea, but men are apt to fay, The time is long. O Gcd 9 

time is long. ^ QW r 0fJ g fhallthe adverfaries reproach f fbzll the enemy blaf- 
pheme thy Name for ever} Why Veithdraweft thou thy hand % 
even thy right hand ? pluckjt out of thy bo/om, Pfal.74 1 0,1 r. 
And fothofe, in Rev .6. 10. H&W long, O Lord, holy and true , 
doft thou not judge and avenge our hi cod on them that dwell en the 
earth } 
Scl. To this I anfwer, 

Iheir times of 1. As our times of mercy, fo theiy times of \ttdgment are in 

judgment arc Gods hand. 

Go?brin« 2 ' God doth n0t 0n[ y brin S forth his mcrdcs but alfo 

forth his judg-'* judgments in feafon. 

aunts in fcafon 3. But the term of Gods judgments on evil men is not 

The time is , farre. 

i°fa*ul*}' 1. when thdr fins grow high : When you fee the Corn grow 

When their finj ri P e » then the Sickle is prepared • When the iniquity f the A* 
archijh. morites was full, then they were deftroyed. The godly are ga- 
thered like a Sheaf, and the wicked are confumed as the Stubble. 
God ufually judgeth evil men when their (innings grow fo noto- 
rious that all the world (hall acquit God as moft juft in punifli- 
ing them. 
When their 2 « When their praBifes grow in r olent, that they are control- 
pp&ifjsgrow ingof, and juftlingofGodhimfelf-, not only bear down his 
infolcnt. people but his authority,PfaI.i 19 1 26 It is timefortheefl Lord, 

to work^for they have made void thy Law. 

When their 3 . when their m alice is at the higheft, that they are contriv- 

f.* 1 . C a isauhe ing or a&ingfome radical ruinetothe whole profe (lion of ho- 

^ tk ' linefs. As Pharaoh, when did God begin to judg him ? furely 

when he had plotted the extinction of all the I [rarities in their 

' ^ "" ~" firfU- 

Ver.4« ih] red andtfjyjhjf thej comfort me. 25 1 

firft-born. And Hamanyihtn did God take him off? but even 
then when he had confpired the death and utter mine of all the 

4. when the pecple of Cjtd have none to pity or help ; at the when the pco» 
loweft,when they are (hut up and there is no going out,no com- pi? c\ G^ , 
ing in. They have no power in themfelves, no help from man, h ? ve ncru co 
Pfal.\2.$.For the oppression of the poor 9 for thefghing tf.tbc&l*"™* 
needy ', now will 1 atife, faith tht Lord % I will fet htm in Jafitj 

from him that puffetb at him. Now the Lord appears when he 
appears alone. 

5. when the people ofCjod are diligent in Reformation^ doing when the peo- 
the.r beft, vehement in Application, purging their hearts , and pic of God arc 
lifting up their hands and crie^ unto the Lord for help and judg- di/i S cn . : in Rc " 
ment. The yoke of the Babylcnijk Captivity was broken orT, formation * 
when God poured the Spirit of Grace and fupplication upon 

the inhabitants of Jadah and ferufalem. Zach.iz.o.io It 
fh*ll come to pajfe in that day , that I will [etkjo deftroy all the 
7%dtw$s that come againft Jerttfa/em, ver. 10. And I will pour 
upon, &c* g 



... . ■ ■ ■■ u.m 

252 . 



Verf. 5 . Thou preparejl a Table before me y in the 
pre fence of mine enemies : Thou anointeft 
my head with oik , rny Cup runneth o* 
Ver* . *± 

ehe words. 


AVID having infinuated the fingular and am- 
ple providence of God over him in the Parable 
of a Shepherd^ he doth in this verfe continue an 
amplification of the fame goodnefle in another 
Parable of a Magnificent H)ft, entertaining his 
Guefts with all variety of Dainties and goodly ufage. 

Concerning the Senfe of the Words, there are three O- 
pinions : 

1. One fomcwhit ridiculous , which Genebrard'4% , zAnos 
CMontanus and others of the Pontefician Interpreters force and 
extort 5 Who by the Table have underftood the Altar for the 
MifTe ; and by the C^p, the Ettchariftical Cup in the Sacra- 
ment •, and by the 0//, that Cbri[ma Confirmxtivum ufed by 
themfelves. An Interpretation fo fond, that the very recitati- 
on of it is (T believe) confutation enough. 

2. A fecond is more Tiour ; which is this , That God in 
Chrift, by his Word and Spirit doth confer on his people abun- 
dance of graces (like varieties on a Table) and much admirable 


■ ■— — ^^^^^^^^^— 111- ■■■ ■ --- — -~ ^w— pi— a— ww— ■ ■ 

V'er.5. \TboHpreparcJtdTable before me. 253 

peace, and joyful tranquility fn coofcience (which is as oil for 

gladnefle) and befides all theic, an txcM&ngly txceed r.i height 
o( glory , or future happinefs, which is as a cup that runneth 
I confeflfe fuch fpiritual meditations may be well railed 

by reaion of fome Analogy 'cwixc the one and the other. 

3. The third opinion is mofl ccngruous, which refers all the 
exprertions in the Text to Gods abundant goodnefs and kind- 
nefs to r David in the things of this life, viz. in a way of Noble- 
fiefs, u it rrcre^nd State. Not for meer neceflity,but for variety. 
A Mnck(thouprepareft a Table for met ) A delightfulnefs , 
(thoua/toi*teft mj head with oil.) A plentifulnefs, [my Cup run- 
neth over.) 

Before I draw forth the Propofitions on which I intend to 
in(lft,it will bemeetina brief Paraphrafe to give the fenfe and 
meaning of the words i n the Text. 

Tbiu] (.*.) VVhoartmy God, my Lord, my Shepherd. 

Prep ire ft a Table, &c^ (J.) Provided all things neceflfa- 
ry for my life, and fets them before me as i'o many difhes on the 
Table : Thou bringeft many mercies to my hand,to my mouth, 
and doft with the variety of them, after a fort, feaft me. 

In the pre fence of mine enemies'^ (.i. ) Hofttbus mcis viden- 
tlhiu\ m)\invidentibus. Though mine enemies wifh my ru- 
inc, and malevolently repine, grudge and envy at every mer- 
cy that befals me, and would (if they could) prevent, hinder , 
fruftrate any good and comfort ^ yetagainil all their defires , 
malice, envies , rcpiningsand endeavours, thou prepared a Ta- 
ble for me. Yea, and 

Thou anointeft mj head rvith Oil~\ There was Oleum Regale y 
with which Kings were anointed • and Oleum S^ce^ditale^vkh 
which the high Priefts were anointed • and oleum C**vivd* % 
fuch a* was poured on friends or guefts at their entertainments • 
and it wasufually Oleum Aromaticum , 0;1 mixt with fume o- 
ther fpices, and facet ingredients • and it was ufed not fo much 
for Neceflity as for Elegancy and delight. By which 'David 
here intimates, that Godbeiide neceflaries, had alio entertain- 
ed him with many acceflbries, with the Oil of d ; gmtj , and tie 
Oil ofgUbnefs and dt light. 


2 J4 Thou pre far eft a Table be [ore mTT Vcr?5 

My Cup runneth over'} The Septuagint (whom S. Attftin 
andEuthymiw erronioufly follow therein) read to <aroTwp/oy cr* 
c alix tuus^ thy Cup S. ferow takes this off by imputing an 
error to the Edition. The Vulgar Tranflation rca'd it Calix 
mens inebrious, my cup is drunk. In the Hebrew it is JVH *D"D 
cop revdjab, from n°H ravah, which fignifies rigare & riga~ 
ri. The fumroe is, That his Cup (.?'.) His outward portion 
and allowance in externals was not fcanted and fparing, but (did 
run over, J.) it was very plentiful and large ; he had enough 
and to fpare. Pfal.103.1,2. Bhjfe the L*rd 9 O my foul % and all 
that is within ms bleffe hvs holy Name : Bleffe the Lord, O my 
foul^ and forget not all hid benefits. 

Out of all this , there are three things very remark- 
able •, 

1. Davids grateful and diftinfl acknowledgment of mercies 

2. Gods liberal and bountiful provision for David. 

3. The effectual Collation of much good and kindnefleon 
him, notwithftanding all the malevolence and refinance of his 
adverfaries. ^ 

From the firft of thefe, this Propofition is obferv- 
Dott. That it is a fit duty with a fervent grate fulnejfe to ncknovp" 

It is * fie duty ledge all the mercies andbUffings tyhich Gcd hath conferred up' 
with frequent C r$us. 

gracefttlacb to Here arc tw0 branches in this one afTertion, 

acknowledge ~ m r 1 1 r j ^ r • 

all the mercies l ' ^ ne > That a grateful acknowledgment of mercies u very 

of God. meet • this is evident here in Davids pra&ice, who is as 

Gra:cfu' ac- abfolute a pattern for thankfulneffe in thisverfe as ever you 

knowledgrncnt rea( j. fo^ 

virTmi" " l ' He doth n0t f or & et the hle $ n & s conferred oa nifn ty God, 

but minds and meditates on them. 

2. Ashe doth not bury them in Oblivion, fo neither in ft- 
lence (as he did the talent in a napkin) but fpealrs of mercies 
received^ well as thinks of them. Though it be Wifdom to 
conceal our own abilities, yet it is but Juftice to publifhGods 

3. And in fpeaking of them, it is not after a grumbling 
murmuring , difcontented and repining manner , {This Man- 

Ver. > . 'Thou prepare ft a Table before rnt. 255 

**,faidthe Ifraelites , andean he give brcadal/o) but the ner- 
cies are opened both with cheerful and exid declarati- 

There are four Circumftances which concur to an ex;& ac- 
knowledgment of bleilings or mercies. F jur ctrcura- 

1. When the number is exatl: I mean when every mercy is l * 3nccs conCur 
gathered up into the thankful account, no one fragment of^ n :hc , e * jAac ~ 
them is loltbut fummed up. When menexpreis their mercies f mercies. 

as they doconfefstheirfmsby halves, and they are not foma Wh?n the rmm- 
ny but few: This is a wrong and injury unto God and his bcr h ei*ft. 
goodnefs. But Davids Arithmetick is full, he drowns no mer- 
cy, conceales none of the Lands t but his fpeech implies even 
all the mercies which he had received. 

2. when tbeva'rte u exit? : Though a man gives in the^' hfn tFe Y3lw 
full account , yet if hedoth belie the dignity and worth (as Lscxaftt 
Ananias and Saphira did about the felling of their Lands) he 
isunjuftj mercies muft be acknowledged to their full value, 

as Abraham paid his money to the full value, currant money 
with the Merchant ; fo doth David here, give every mercy its 
full allowance and weight. He doth not fpeak of them di- 
minutively, God hath done a little for me, it is not much 
God knows, almoft as much as will ferve the turn , &c. No ! 
but gives an Emphafisto all the mercies. Its a Table, and 
fn eet oyntment, and an abounding cup, 

3 . When the application is exatt; : We are generally good When the a?- 
accomptants for other mens fins and mercies, we can fetthempi'ca-.ionhci- 
out to the full, fertilior.feges alieno, &c. Vicinttncjxe poem , a:t - 
grand- ^r ubtr habet \ we can rate them atthehigheft , this is 

but envy ; but thankfulnefs , is to give in the value of out- 
own :. ercies , to fpeak well of the goodnefs which God ihew- 
eth to us. / will tell jouivh.it he hath done for my foul. So 
doth David here, he acknowledgeth the table for him, and the 
oyl for bim t and that his own cup did overflow. 

4. whin thecaufeis exjft'y acknowledged : Thus David When the 
here, when he hath cad up all the merce-, and given unto them cau c is ' « 
their value, and con r ciTedhis intereft, hedoth notno.vbuv 8ckno ^ v £ 
the knee and adore himfelf, (acrificc to his own net , blefi and 
magnitie his own abilities , Merits, Wifdome, Induftry , c : . 

but humbly falls down and prefcnts all at thefceCof God, coo- 


2^6 Thou pre far eft a Table before me Ver.y. 

felling him in his free mercy to be the author of all thefe blef- 
fings. Thou prepareft ; &c. thou anointeft my head, &c. Jacob 
was on the fame key of thankfulnefs, Gen. 32. 10. lam nut 
worthy of the lea fl of all the mercies , and all the truth which 
thou hafi ' fJjewed unto thy fervant , for With my fttff I pajfed 
over this fvr dan ^ and now I am become tVco bands ; Loe,a fweet 
acknowledgment not of one , or of a few;mercies, bur of all, 
and a diftind acknowledgment , how he had thriven from one 
man into two bands , and all afcribed unto the goodnefs of 
bis God, Pfal. i 47. I . Praife is comely , Pfal. 3 3 . 1 , Praife i* 
comily for the tfpright.lt is a comly thing to fee the trees break- 
ing and budding and flowring inthefpring, and it is a comely 
thing to fee a man blefling of God, acknowledging his good- 
nefs under the prefence and fenfe of mercies : grateful ac- 
Reafcns of k. knowledgment of mercies is meet for the people of God. 
Mercies to '• Becaufe to the faithful (fuch as David) they are Gods 

them are Gods kjnd expreffions , arYe&ionate expreflions. Every mercy to a 
sfFcaiona:ctx- good man in any kind is a token of love, its a drop from a 
prcfllons. gracious affe&ion^rg& it is Bajt^iKov JV?V.Though little,yet if) 

out of love. &c. 

and undefcrved 2 ' Becaufe % ^° e J 4re f ree an ^ undeferved bene dill ions : 

Benedictions. Though we do murmure even in fulnefs , yet we are not 

worthy of thecrums under the table : It is of his mercy that 

*we are not confumed y faid the Church, how much'more t^en is it 

of his mercy that we are bleffed •, that he give? us heakh and 

weakh , and peace, and liberty. In all our miferies we have 

reafon to be (ilent , for our fins deferve greater evils then ever 

we have felt. In ail our mercies we have reafon to be thankful, 

for our (ins are fuch that we do not deferve the lead mercy 

M(rciesareloft which ^erweenjoyed. -^ 

if not acknow- 3- Mtrctes are l»ft if not acknowledged : -1 ne iweetne!sx)f 

lcd^ed. them is loft where the heart is unthankful • the courfe of them 

isftopr, if not acknowledged: the child muft fuck rhebrefts 

or elfe the miik will dry up,and mercies will not ftay or increafe 

where the hea* is unfenfible, or the tongue is filent The un- 

praying Perfon gets no mercy , and the unthankful man (hall 

l \ to'o^rV ^ uick, y be rid of thcm - 

Form n er°ci« rCnt 4* ^ s ^- m y mre thenjuftice to pay in our Rent for fo good a 
leafe as that of werciu> If a man hath a hard bargain 

h e 

Ver.5 . Thm preparefl a TabU before me, eye 2 5 7 

he mud pay his rent , but if a good leafe and a fmall rent &c 
Its cru: we can pay in unto G >d no quit-rent , vet a pepper 
corn, a flower he doth expeft , that we fhould affectionately 
acknowledg : This is a m^rcy from God, and this I have of h:s 
goodnefs ; a fmall and juft re:urn under all goodnefs, to confefs 
all thefe are th:m:rc e$ which the Lord hath gcacioufly given 
unto his fervant. A f 

2, The fecond branch of the aflfertion is , that a frequent ^-kioMed«meot 
knoxvledgm-nt of (fids mercies it a meet duty , David is at it of G;J$ mer- 
it] the beginning of this Pfalm,anithe tune p!ea r ech him fo well cicsix a ^ecc 
that he goes it over agiin in this verfe. Read Pfalm 103.1.2. *?' 
How hedoth inforceic on him'elf : "Bleffe the Lord , O my 
foul , and all that is Within m:, Blejfehis holy namt : Blejfe 
the Lird , O my foal , ani forget not all his benefits. There 
are three things wherein I find D tvid very frequent. One is 
an humble conftjfion of fin. Another is a *re it defire to truft on 
G j.Is truth^A. third is a grate ful acknowledgment of Gods mtrcifs. 

There are two thing; which we fhould never forget. One is 
turfinf by which we have dishonoured God • Another, Gods 
mercits wherewith he doth blefs us. We fhould take occafion 
and repeat the mercies of God, thus h: delivered me, thus he 
fuccouredme, thus he reftored me, thus he favoured me. 

Reafons of this aiTertion, many • R«afons , 1 " k 4 

1. Thankfulnefs is as imperfetl a Grace inns as any : and Thankfulncfs 
we are as in all other Graces fo in this to ft rive after more per- is «* jnperfed 

fetlim now frequent thanking makes us more thankful. If a a * rac * ,nus as 
man cannot pay all at once, yet often payments [till addes *na w ilrJfcifttr 
makes the payment more full; often believing is a further more pcrfe&i* 
ftrength to Faith, and often acknowledging of mercies makes on in i:. 
our hearts yet moreftrong in thanksgiving. 

2. We can never overthanl^ the Lord : As (ins can never be W f c ™ never 
ovcrpunifhid , fo mercies can never be overacknowledged.^;"^*' thc 
When we have done about our bleiTing of God as David and 

they did in weeping, weep till they could weep nomye • fo ue 
blefs till our tongues can fpeakno more, yet fuch is the deferc 
of mercy that more acknowledgment is yet behind, we cannot 
pay in our thanks for the leatl mercy all our d ayes. 

3. iVc a*e apt to forget our mercies: you fee how it is with J \*™ ap! t0 
us as with the Ifraclites^ Every next ftraightdid drown all their c {.* k 

LI ft* 


ThoufrepareftaTable before me, &c Vcr.5. 


former mercies though they had a miraculous prefervation out 
of Egyp , and faw their enemies drowned , and were filled 
with praifes hereupon, yet prefently as foon as they came to 
Mar ah that the waters were bitter, they fell on murmuring; 
even fo is it with us, our hearts upon every croffe, and ftreight, 
are apt to overlook all mercies, and to be more fenfible of one 
prefent diftreile then of a thoufand blefiings : therefore we 
had need to wind up our firings again which are fo quickly apt 
to fall a ad jarr. 
t s rnffnUr 4* I T ^ a ftngular means to add tommy Graces within us. I 

At IS 8 liriculoi . a , m *f, 

means to addc will touch at a few : 

tomanyGra^ i. To our loveuntoGod^ mark it in experience, if once 

ccs, you lofe the fight of mercies you will quickly lofe the heat of 

7°° Ut *° VC t0 l° ve - * c * s a g rat eful meditation of Gods goodnefs to us,which 
fetcheth up and quickens our affections to him • the greatefl: 
thankfulnefs everbreeds the ftrongeft affections unto God, for 
we cannot exprefs thankfulnefs, but our eyes muft look on the 
love and kindnefs of God, and thefe two are the prime motives 
of love, viz. Divine Love, and Divine kindnefs , Love and 
Kindnefs or Bounty , caufe our Love. 

2. To our quiet nefs and contentment of Spirit •, what's 
the reafon of our boylings, frettings, murmurings, and difcon- 
tents-, furely this, our fingers are (till on the fore-, our eyes 
are ftill on our wants, and not on our receipts ; but if we would 
take a Catalogue of our Mercies, and be expert in them, loi 
what a fumme of mercies is man, life,a mercy ; heakh,a mercy; 
understanding , a mercy ^ houfe, a mercy ; fleep, a mercy -, 
friends, a mercy • &c. his heart would grow quiet and con- 
tented, he would fay, the Lord hath not been at a dry and bar- 
ren wildemefs, the Lord hath done great things for me, great 
have his mercies been to my foul y to my bociy y &c. 

3. To our future dependence on G 04/; when ftreights-and exi- 
gences do befalus,yet grateful acknowledgment of Gods good- 
nefs, revives the d ayes of old, and brings forth the ancient trca- 
fures. Look O my foul, here is a mercy, God gave at fuch a 
time, and here is a mercy which beyond all defert or expectati- 
on he let fall at another time. The Lord hath been the God 
of thy mercies- truft ftill on,him for his mercies endure for e- 
ver. TheTame motives inclining him to mercy ftill abide with 


To our con- 
tentment of 

To our future 

Ver.J. 7hcu prey areft a Table before me^ &c% 259 

him, and the fame fpring of goodnefs ftill lives in him : therefore 

I will truft on him for ever. 

f 4. lo obedience j much thankfulnefs is ahvayes a means To obedience. 

of much fruitfulnefs • it makes the Chriftian more cheerful and 

more fruitful to perufe the obligations of better duty. 

5 . Laftly, Wherefore doth the Lord every day renew mercy, 
hut becaufe we pjould frequently acknowledge his goodnefs : J^Jf 1 ? °? 

There comes not a day over our heads, no not one hour in that?*.' ' 

, , . , ■ nt j 1 ■ 1 ,- ■ • renew mercy, 

day, but either is rilled with pohtive or privative mercies : nowb LK t ba:wc 

as in (hooting we let fly a fecond arrow to find the firft, fo the may frequently 
Lord lets fall a fecond blefiing to put us in mind of former blef ^knowledge 
fings- mercies come in apace, that acknowledgments fhould* 115 * 00 ^ 15, 
rile a pace. Gods hand is ftill open in blefiing of us, that out- 
hearts and tongues fhould ftill be opened to blefs andpraife 

Is "David full of a grateful acknowledgment of Gods mer- W' l • 

cies unto him, defcanting fo fweetly upon every (train of blef- ^ Vc msy con " 
r . 1 . . D . rr j j r demno^r own 

fing ? then we may in his virtuous expreilion read and condemn ^- u \ ZVi f 

our own harft unJeindnefs and oblivion of Gods mercies conferred Gxis nicrcics. 

upon our felves. There is not a man of us who hath not tafted 

of Gods mercies, yea, of many mercies ; our lives, our health 

our prefent peace, our liberty, our fleep, integrity of fenfes and 

lmbs, &c. areall of them mercies : 'lis true they are not of 

the higher rank of mercies, the upper fprings, the choiccft of 

mercies, yet mercies they are, and every one of them, 

1. Such as rve never did deferve. 

2. Such at Without which we could not well continue and 
ferve God. If God (hould let ficknefs take off our healths, or 
ache take off our eafe, or bondage take off our liberty, or 
war take off our peace, or poverty take off our plenty, &c. 
we would then confefs health and eafe, and liberty and plenty, 
to be neceffary mercies. But why is it that thefc pearls are 
tredden under our feet ? Were there not .. clean^but 
where are the r.ine > there is not that nt ve God thjnkj 

i nt this ftranger ontly . faid Chrift. Two tilings grow very Cjri *- cr 

rareamongftus, Oncis Fidelity to mw^ The other is Thank? u 

fib* N.M Confider though, EftSE* 

I. how unequal it is to be much in pray errand r^« tobe cold in i n p 3 y?r 3 ani 
fraifes; to open, the windowesto let th: light in^nd then to c M in ^Hc* 

L 1 2 (hue 

i6o Thcuprtpareft aTable before me, &C Ver.y. 

{hut out the Sun j Or rather to turn the cock to let in the water 
and the ciftern being full to turn the cock againft the fpring. My 
meaning is, in our neccfiities to be vehement in our craving, 
and in our enjoying to be extremely forgetful and filenc. To 
know a (]cd when we want, and jet not to acknowledge a God 
when we pcjfefs ; as if his kindnefs were not as proper a ground 
for our praifes, as his goodnefs is for our prayers •, or that we 
were lefs obliged to God after his bounties. When I give a 
fervant money, it is many times a difcharge of his duty, he 
hath his wages and departs ^ but when I give a child encourage- 
ments, this doth the more indear his affections, and raife thern^ 
it is a fufpicious argument that we are not good, when 
mercies make cs not more^fenfible of Divine goodnefTe. 
2. How unprofitable do the mercies prove, which are frvalhVv- 
Howun profit f j^ v - lt ^ mt han^fHlnefs f Never exfed that any mercy fttould 

movc,°when lCia£ta * n * ts en( *' '*• we ^ or g et: tnat mercy. Jf it feems nothing in 
fwallowcd up our eyes, it will work nothing in our hearts ; it will never be a 
with unthank- breath to inflame our love to God, nor a gale to fet on our 
fulncfs. careful obedience unto him. But as the Corn in the Granary 

lies ftill, or in fome earth lies and rots 5 orliketheunfeafonable 
Manna, it was diftaftful ; fo flighted mercies ordinarily prove 
fharpeft judgments, for God cannot abide tofeehisholimfs 
In fapient. mocked, nor his kindnefs flighted. Holcsth (an Englifb Wri- 
ter) tells a ftory of a woman named Nephaftes , who being 
with child, went into the Temple of the gods to ask what ic 
might be that (he went withall ? Unto which defire of hers one 
of the gods anfvvered, Foetus turn Filim eft & dabo pttlchritu- 
dinem. Another anfwered , tilitu eft , & dabo fortitudi- 
r.im\ and another, Filim tft> & dabo divitias ; Three great 
gift«, Beauty, Strength, and Riches ; but (he made a tufh of 
all thefe, becaufe fhe hankered after fame other thing, as the 
favour of great perfonages, and long life, &c. which unthank- 
ful tufh the gods efpying, prefently turned all their gifts into 
punifliments: Thefirft, in (lead of Beauty, gave the Child an 
Apes head •, Thefecond inileadof Strength, gaveitGoofe feet^ 
The third, inftead of Riches caufed it to be born without any 
skin at all. Th? ftory is but a Fable, yet the hint of it is 
moral, viz. How available Unthankfulnefs is to curfe our very 
bletfings, and to turn our table into a fnare, our peace into war, 


Vcr.5» ikon prep.ircft TMe before mt^&c. 26i 

plenty into Scarcity, rj c. Two things for ever remember from 
me, A man is either not I, A lung pofleflbur. 2. A quiet 
pofleflbur of mercies who is not a grateful acknowledger of 

3. The very Heathens trill rife in judgement again ft us , Thsv?ryH?a- 
who for courtefies received from man, have exprefled large ac- :hcn$ w 
knowledgments , and yet Chriltians for the many mercies re- in ju&aieiii a* 
ceivedfn mGod,are filent and flighting. A good h;(torianl a,nil u -* 
reports of fome Cjrecians in the life of F/amixiuf, that Phi- Tluurcb. 
lip being overcome and liberty proclaimed unto him by Flams- 
•J*/, they in a thankful acclamation made fuch an exclamation 
with <r&)7>)? ffaTtiq , that the very fowles of the air fell down 
dead. Thus they for one mans life, and yet we cry out nothing 
but murmurings and diflikes againft a God of conftantand 
great mercies unto us all. Heathens wonderfully thankful yet 
Chriftians monftruoufly forgetful, who receive more and better 
mercies from the hand of a God. 

Ob. But perhaps you will fay, we do take notice of Gcds 
mercies, and do not forget or flight them. 

Si I. I cannot infill on all particulars, onely be p'eafed to re- u this Thank- 
folve me of thefe fcruples . falncfi ? 

Firft, Whether he who is fenfible of nothing but miftrj isto- - 
be judged as a thankful man for mercy, that hath nothing in his „JjJJ£ s ^ ° 
thoughts (habitually) and his language, but wants and lofTes. fcniiblcncfs of 
grievances and crofTes, is ftiil groaning and complaining • what mifcrks. 
hath God done ? what profit that we have ferved him ? 

Sccmdlj, Whether this be thankfulnefs, Rhetorically to am- . 

plifie our particular evils and ftill to diminifb and undervalue * m '- Us 
r i r . . ,\j/- r mercies and 

our particular mercies • bor mijeries no man ever had fo many, 10 amplifying of 

thick, fo great, fo unavoidable as we, our CrofTes are greateft. evils. 

For wm>r,none fuch thinne, fuch poor, fuch annfeful as ours. 

Our husbands, our wives, our children our fcrvants, our tra- Ml ! r ;T- JMn * 

ding In every mercy we arefnort or others, and ;n every 

mifery far above others^ and call we this a grateful sck*onledg- 


And Thirdly, if I fhould yet propound a demand more, VVbtttlic 

yrkat alarri'j of (pit it we find in our particular conditions ? or" fpMcdo we 

What fublimity of eftimationof that God who is fo merciful ^ dlnourpii* 

untous ? what ardency of affedion unto him tor hs preat ::cu>irconuK1 " 

— --■■■- - — ■ - ■ ■■ ■ ■ — — 

262 Then prepared a Table before me, &c. Ver.$ 

goodnefs, what iolemn celebration of any one mercy ? what 
Srongerrefolutiontoferveagood God better? or urhateife- 
clual execution thereof ? I fear thatashefaid, <?/*/.?<=rz.^ s»*$ 
Scripture yr roe are not Chriflians. So I may fay, either thefe 
things are not the cognifances of true Gratitude, or elfe we are 
fouly ungrateful. But I will fay no more to this, but let us re- 
member our forgetfulnefs of Gods mercies this day, and hum- 
ble our hearts for it ^ as we do expect the comfort of prefent 
mercies, and the'fupply of future, as werefped the honor of 
the Giver, and the benefit of the receiver, let us take time and 
eonfider of the loving kindnefTe of the Lord, of every mercy, 
and often thereof and beg for thankful hearts and lips, fo ihall 
God have the glory of a merciful God, and we (hall continue 
ftill to be the people of his favour and bleflings. 
Thus far of David's grateful acknowledg ment,now I proceed 
to the particular mercies themfelves which he doth acknow- 
ledge, viz,, <zA Table prepared ovfurxifted, an Head anointed 
with ojl and a C H V running over • all which tend to one and the 
fame thing, namely to fuggeft the liberal hand of God to- 
wards him in the things of this life : whence this Proportion is 
'Dobl. 2. That God doth confer on feme of his people fometimes a Urge 
God doth con- portion and variety of outward bltffmgs . he doth feaft them, 
feronfomeof he provides not onely bread but a table well furnijbed, and not 
his people onely variety, but delicacy, oil to anoint them -, and not onely 
a°Sr|e m p C ortion^ or neceflky but for redundancy, Their cup runs over • Here 
and variety of obferve, 

outward blef- i. That I do not affirm this univerf ally for &ll perfons^ 

oP'h h* ma " y W ^° k rve ^ 0C * may . ^ e fe& {n a more retrained way, 

AfcionjsVf* part ^ their P rivate condition of life requires no abundance^ 

firmed. partly their fpecial condition of Chriftianity, they being to 

ad: fome eminently paflive obedience to the crolTe , likewife 

ftrips them of their varieties; partly their impotent difpofaion 

and ability to manage or ferve God under great mercies. For 

as David could not fight well in Saul's armor, nor all itomachs 

digeft varieties , fo cannot every Chriftian walk well in that 

ftri&nefs of duty under a plentiful prefence of outward pro- 


2. Nor do I affirm it univerfally for all times • as if thofe 
good men who were richly bleftby God hadaleafeforlife, 


Ver. 5 . Thou preparejl a Table before me, &:c. 263 

as if there were an infallibility of pretence, as well as a fariety 
of prefence -, No even our higheft Sun may decline and our 
faireft day may be clouded • no good man is fure of more t! [ 
Will make him good or happy. 

But theaflertionis oncly of fome good men, and for fome- 
times, ihe which particularity both for perfons and time«, de- 
pends not on any more fyecial worthinefs in one then in ano- 
ther (for evtry merry to every man is a free drop and a meer 
almcs) or upon a different affection in God unto them, but 
onely on the authority of God who as he gives to whom, fo 
likewife fo much as he himfelf pleafeth • and likewife on the 
tvi'd mot God, who hath peculiar ends and intentions in the 
particular and different distributions of his mercies to the chil- 
dren of men j but that God doth fometimes to fome of his 
people give a larger flock, a fuller portion, a variety, nay a de- 
lightful variety, it is mod: evident by many inftances and ex- 

tsibrahAm was very good, and very rich and great, and had infhncrs, 
not onely to eat but to feaft. fofeph was advanced to be the 
Lord in Egypt, and the next perfon to the King, and had the 
honorable robe, golden chain and key of the Storehoufes. So 
was UMcrdecai t fo was Daniel, fo were Shadrach, Mtjbech % 
and Abtdnegc. What think you of Solomon , Ccnftantin and 
many Chriftian Emperors and Kings? Nay of many good 
Chrifuans in our own knowledge, who vet are not onely emi- 
nent in Grace but alfo in Birth, PlatfT, Authority, Power , 
Wealth , Dignities , Friends , and whatfoever elfe makes 
an outward portion plentiful or comfortable. 

Reafons hereof may be thefe j . 

I. To convince the world , that fodlineff is no iwpedimwt to * l cn ' . mm 
, , fr r , • 1 r To convince 

any earthly greatnejje or comfort. It is neither contrary un:o , thc ^ or M : ha: 

nor uncapable of any outward and convenient mercy. The goJltacft 
G- Id doth not hinder the diamond; a good man may have is Doimpcdl- 
goodnefs and goods too, he may have a rich faith and a pre- rr,em »«*nMf 
tious Saviour, and an ample outward portion too. The inhe- * rC5CrA 
ritance of glory hereafter, a crown in heaven and many world- 
ly def;.ife<v pearles, rubies and creatures on earth. Godlinefs 
( faich the Apoftle) hath the promifes of this li f e and of that 
which uta tome. It doth abridg our lufts, but notour mer- * TlJM * 8, 


264 Thou preparejl a Take before me, &c. Ver.5. 

cics, and guide us in the ufe, but hinder us not from the pof- 
feffion of out ward comfort. Length of dtyesis in her right 
hand , ani it her left hani riches and honour , Pro v. 3. 
To declare the 2. To declare the treafuret of his orvn goodneffe : That he 
trcafures of [ s no c a G^i rich onely in word? and p$>mifes, but alfo in na* 
G^lPoww. cure and efficacy, p mm ,.j. He give?* to all m:n liberally. 
Perhaps fome may retort, this you fay, but what one good 
man finds, it fo ? I Tim, 6. 1 7. He giveth us richly all things to 
enpy 1 We find itfo, (faith Paul in the behalf of many Saints) 
for be giveth not onely to others , but to us • not a few things 
but all things ; not fcantly but richly ^ not to look on, but to 
To enable them 3. To enable them to do more good: Evil men make them- 
to do mote felves but the gaolers of their poffeffiom, and good men arc 
SP the ftewards. The rich fool cries, Soul take thy eafel, thou 

haft good? laid up for mwy years ^ &c. laid up,not laid out, &c . 
Good men they receive , not to have and to hold but to com- 
municate and difperfe ; mercies are in their hands, as blood 
in the Veines f or as waters in a Conduit for publick ufe, they 
are Gods hands here below, his Almoners, and the poor Saints- 
are Chrifts bowels, which are refrefhed by rhem. An evil man 
advanced and profpering ufually turns a common plague ^ but a 
good man blefled with goods becomes a common Sun % to com- 
fort, warm , help others. That noble- woman makes provifi- 
on for Eliah, and Daniel being advanced raifeth up the three 
Children , and fofeph preferves his father and brethren alive , 
and Obadiah the Courtier preferves the lives of the Pro- 
For their own 4. For their own good : Of private comfort and cheerful- 
£ood. neft , that they might ferve fo liberal a God without diffracti- 

ons and cares ; nay, with much alacrity and cheerfulnefs, accor- 
ding to the great goodnefs which he (hews unto them. That 
not only their bodies may be like <z field which the Lord hath 
btejfed , but that their fouls alfo might be as a Watered garden. 
Vfe,. Thus briefly for the explication and confirmation of the 

affertion^ the main work refts in the application of this unto 
our felves. Is the Lord liberal and bountiful to fome of his 
fervantsin outward mercies and bleffings; anddoany of you 


Vcr. 5 . Thctt prcfarejl a Tabic kef ere me.SiC. 1^1— 

find that his hand of goodnefs hath been enlarged towards 
you , that you have the dews of heaven and the fatnefsof tne 
earth, that your corn and wine are incrcafed , that with f*r 
ab you are become two bands , that the Lord hath blefled thee 
like Jfaac, of whom it isfaid, (Jen. 26. 13. Tha man prd* d 
great and went forward , and grew until he became very great. 
I have two things to fay unto thee in fuch a condition. 1. Right- 
ly ufe this bounty. 2 . By no means abufe thy ft If, cr thy God , 
or his bounty to thee. 

I. Rightly ufe all this bounty , and liberality of Gcds good* fo^y u f c 
fiefs : *Tis true they are talents and more then God concre- this Bounty, 
dits to every fervant , but then every talent is given for ufe and 
right imployment-, what thinkeft thou that thefe blefiings 
come unto thee without the Lord ? Is not he the giver of all 
thy good , and doth he give them unto thee , to do what thou 
pleafeft. We are Stewards (faith the Apoftle ) of the mani- 
fold gifts of <5od; and Stewards are not Lords, they are not 
to referve but todisburfe the goods concredited unto them. 
There is a threefold ufe, that youmuftput the bountiful ex- A Threefold 
prelTions of Gods goodnefs unto. B f c f the 

1. One refpe&s god himfelf. Honour the Lordf faith Solo- bountrul 
won, Prov.3.9 ) With thy fubfiance and with the firft fruits t ^^°i 
cf all thine increafe. Though rhe Lord might juftly challenge i^J^o^ $ ' 
all that we poflefs , yet he is pleafed onely to call for a pare , God himfelf. 
and that he doth call for. Children are a blefling, and he did We mni ho-^ 
call for the firft born • Vintage a blefling, and he did call for n our God ni:h 
the firft ripe grapes. Harvelt a blefling, and he did call for lhc °- 
the firft (heaves.The wifc,though fhe hath a right to the good?, 
yet (he mult ufe them. 1 . According to her husbands Will. 2 . 
For his honour. 3 . For her own. 

Objetl. But what is it 1 honour the Lord with his blef- 
Sol. I anfwer, it is 

To acknowledg the freeneffe of his goodneffe : As the onely By icknofp- 
caufc of all the rich mercies which we poflefs : All this (lore Icj i ir ^ ' hc . 
cometh of thine own hand, and all is thine own, faid David,,-" i' r % 
1 Chr. 29. 16. 1 am not worthy of the leafl of all thy mercies , 
and all the truth Which thou h.xfv fhtwedunto thy ftrvdut , i 
Jacob, GV*. 32, iq. Ifweafcribe our greatnefs to our own 

M ra merits 


Thou prepare]! a Table before me, &c Vcr. 5 




®ur Love. 

merits, or to our own contrivances, or to the favours of men, 
as th: principal caufe;, God isnowdifhonoured, helofechthe 
glory of being an lliiverfal good ; and the caufe of all good •, 
batfath Divid,Whofo off ^ret h praife gLrifiethme^ Pfal. 50.23. 
Howfo 1 becaufe our praifes of him do declare all ourgood- 
nefs to be from his goodnsfTe , allouc mercies to arife from his 
Byimprovinf Secondly, It is to Improve his bleffings as occaftouf or reborn 
hisb\tfii~iis&sfor the bettering of our affsCilons unto km, that all his mercies 
occafcmsof are cords of hue to bind and bend our affe&ions^ wind up the 
firing higher and it gives the clearer found-, the higheft Sun pro- 
duceth the faireft Day, and the fob:r Rain the 'fweeteft Flow- 
ers : So fhould the moreample bleilings from God , beget and 
fire the largeft affe&ions unto God, especially, 

Our hvt unto him : This the Lord requires of the Ifraelites 
after his exceeding goodneffe un:o them, Dent, ic.12. isi'l 
that I require is that thoi4 love me • and David exprelTeth it 
m Pfal. 116.1. Plentiful mercies (hould caufe our hearts to 
cleave more unto the Lord, and to delight more in the Lord ^ 
they (hould make the Lord more amiable co us j like beams lea- 
dingus to the Sun.or as dreams co the Fountain : They (hould 
raife our hearts to the exceeding Fountain of ail goodnefs and 

, And oar fear of him : We (hould fear the Lwd andhis good' 
nejfe, as the Prophet fpeaks, #*A-S We (hould make the 
greater mercies as the greater reafons not to offend and fin a- 
gainft the Lord- as Ezra, Steing thots hjft givtntts fuchdeli* 
verance as this, pjoutd "tie .again break thy Commaadmsnts} 
Ezra 9.13,14. 

Thirdly, And as enlargments to our obedience : Not only to 
continue faithful to our good matter, but alfo fruitful to our 
bountiful benefaclor. All mercies (hould be like (howers on 
theVallies, or like fo many Rivers falling into a common 
Stream: heighth of bleflings fhould increafe a depth in our 
Obedience, No mercy is like a baby to be loo'it on and played 
with, but is like a book wherein a Leflbn is to be taken forth : 
all the meat and drink which we take are loft if they fail not in 
to the noarifhment of our bodies . all the mercies are loft, if 
they prove not fails to our affeitionsj and additions to ourfer- 


<©ur Fear. 

them as en* 
hrgemems to 
one obedience. 

Vcr.5. Thoufreyarefl a 7 die before me^ &c% 26 

\ :tes. Mercy fhould be like a grain of corn in the earth, which 
(hoots up with a full care: when great rr.ercies (hew them- 
selves in great duties, that we grow more exact, more confcio- 
nable, more chearful , more vigorous, and fruitful in them, 
this would prove our comfort and Cods honour. 
Fourthly, God is honoured by us in the right ufe of ha blef I«proiln| 

[i*fs % when we manaie them as furtherances and encouragements 3$ ,".' 

r, n- ir s - tl ta j t 4 r* j / , ranees of hi s 

cfbuwcrfitpandferzice. Thus David honoured God ( and wor fhipan<i 

fodd his people) when they fo willingly and bountifully offer-' it:s \cz. 
ed to the houie for Gods holy Name, i Chr 29.16. The pub- 
lick Ordinances In the purity and efficacy of them, there is not 
a more lingular way to honour God, then to uphold and feed 
the Lamps of hi9 Sanctuary, to preferve the Ark and the Ora- 
cles which are the glory of Ifrael. How prevalent are they to 
convert finners, to direct (inners, to bring men unto repentance, 
unto faith, unto the knowledg and obedience of Chrift , to 
ftrengthen them in all the fruits of righteoufnefs which areto 
the praife of God in Chrilt > 

2. The fecond Ufe of Gods liberal bounty unto us for out- In rcfpe&of 
ward things, refpects cur felves ,• and thus they are rightly hr- our ^ civ "« 
ployed when we ufe them, 

1 . For our refre floing and comfort : Therefore God gives us U c th;m for 
Oil, that we might anoint our faces ; and Wine, that we might our refusing 
gladour heart*. It is a very curfe when a man hath a dead and c ^ mioi: * 
heart under lively mercies , a great eftate and no heart to ufe 
it • that yet he rejoyceth not all the dayes of his life, but is a- 
fraid to eat, and afraid to drink, and afraid to ufe any of Gods 
bleflings •, begs the mercies, and envies himfelf the ufe of them- 
he do:h hereby injure the goodnefs of God in giving , and in- 
jure the mercies themfelves which are given for our comfort j 
and injure particular nature, defrauding it of that benefit de- 
figned for its fupport and comfort, behold, (faidSelowon, 
Ecclef.5.18.) it u go r d and comely for one to eat a>:d to drml^ t 
and $7 enjoy the good of all his labour all the dayes ofhx life yvlich 
Godgivethhim : f*rk is his portion And v. 19. It is the Gifi 
of God , having riches , and wealth, to have power to eatc 
thereof, and to take his portion , and to rejoice in his la- 
bour, cVc. 

M m 3- 2. For 

a 68 Thou prepare ft a Table b efore w,&c. Ver«5 

lot the better 2. For our bttter fervice and difcharge of our callings : We 
cifchargcofQ^rmuftnotufethemfor themfelves , but for a further end then 
callings. themfelves. As Sauce is ufcd not for it felf, but for that which 
is better then Sauce- fo our outward bleffings are to be ufed, 
fo that by the ufe of them we may be the berter fitted for Gods 
ufe and fervice. It is one thing to ked an Ox which you in- 
tend to kill, an other thing to feed an horfe which you intend 
to ride. I muft fo feed my body in the ufe of mercies, that nei- 
ther foul nor body hearby become unfervicable,but more apt for 
the fervice of theGod of my mercies,in my general and particu- 
lar calling; Though the mercies be many yet the ufe muft be 
- fober ; it were, a mad thing becaufe the firearm are full, there- 
fore to let in as much water as will run into my houfe. The 
Miller admits of no more water then will well drive the Mill and 
grind the Corn ^ and fuch a ufe of our mercies is right , which 
not drowns but drives, not fupprefTeth fitneffe, but which more 
fits me and enables me in my place. But of this more anon,and 
therefore I will not now inlarge. 

3. The third right ufe of our plentiful blefllngs refpettso- 
IiKefpsftof t y erf . if God makes our Cup to run over in his 3ounty, we 
For th'erefrefh- fhould makeit to run over in our Charity. And indeed where- 
»g of others, fore doth the Lord make our Cup run over , but that others 
ftiould be refredied by the droppings of the fame ? and 
wherefore doth he fpread our Table, but that others might be 
refrefhed by the crums which fall from our Table ? But a meer 
doing good toothers in a way of charity, is not fufficient "where 
God hath deaft bountifully with us in particular, but a redun- 
dant, or exuberant Charity is required. The Apoftle chargeth 
all who profefTe the Faith, to be forward to maintain good workj, 
Tit.3 8. But then he hath a more fpecial charge for rich men, 
and them unto whom God hath given all things richly to enjoy, 
not only that they do good, but that they be rich in good workj % 
1 Tim.6. 17,18. And in another place tofow liberally. For as 
Moriecai faid to £fc/kr,touching the improvement of her ho- 
nour and advancement with the King for the good of her nati- 
on, Eftk.4.14.. who \noweth whether then art come to the king" 
dom forfuch a time as this ? The fame I may fay more pofitive- 
Jy, Therefore hath the Lord thus advanced thee in thy degrees, 
I41 chy dignities^ in thy wealth, in thy friends, the Oil is more 


Vcr. J . Thou prepareft a Table before mc z 8tc. 2 69 

plentifully poured en thee, that it may more plentifully flr.v 
from thee ; the (bowers come more upon the Mou that 

they may dr. 11 more into die lower Valiies. He hath made thee, 
as it were , the Lord Treafurer , that thou mayeit be not only 
faithful to him, but very beneicial to others. 

Thfs is not an Arbitrary thing , but a Neceftary duty, the 0- 
mifilon of it may endanger your fouls. The Lord requires it an 
the hands of you to abound in good works when he abounds in 
his goodnefs toward you, and alTuredly he will charge it on you 
in the day of Judgment. And befides the command and terror 
of the Lord, there are plentiful occalions and objects for your 
liberallity. There are many hungry that need food, thirfty 
that need drink, ftrangers that need harbour , naked that need 
clothing, fick and imprifoned that need viliting j What fhould 
Jfpeakof fatherlefle and widows, and blind, and maimed, and 
aged, and lame, and thofe that furTer for the confeilion of the 
truth • all which in Scripture are fit ob je&s. 

But then confider, That not a bare quality of biefiing others 
isfufficient, but if the Lord hath dealt bountifully with us, a 
quantity is required , Thou /halt open thy hand wide to the poor 
and needy, Deut.i 5. 1 1. juft as men fow feed with a full hand ; 
unto which the Apoitle alludes, in 2 CV.9.6. By this means 
you (ball, I. ~Dif charge your confeiences in the duty of Chari- 
ty ■, And, 2. Rightly improve the talents of mercy committed 
unto you : And 5. Raife up many prayers for your perfons, as 
Paul did for Ontfiphorus. 4: Evidence the livelinejfe of your 
Faith, Jam. 2. 5. A fare your felves of Gods Sternal mercies 
hereafter. 6. Draw down more outward mercies upon your 
felves. The Fountain is not dimini(bed but augmented by g* 
ving water to the thirfty, faid Clemens Alex. Pedagog. l.^.c.7. 
The widows oil did increafe by running ; we do not lok, but 
increafeour mercie* by imparting of them for Gods honour, 
and the comfort of others : SifrumentumfervMy perd;s } ft fe- 
minas renovas, CloiTa in Mat.l6.2t. Ter r ena omnia fervando 
amittimur, largiendo fcrvamus^ faid Ifidore. (7iw, (faith Chritr, 
Luke6-38.) and it /ball be given unto you, good meafure, preffed 
dc\*n y andfbake* together , and running over , fh all men give into 
yew bo r ome. Ho?i,urthe Lord with thy (ubftar.ee, fofljill thy 
fames be filled With plenty, and thy prefjes fiallburft oat with 


270 jhoafreparefl a Table before me, &c. Vcr.5 

new wine. Prov.3.9,10 Especially berefolved toad this T now 
when you are coming to the Sacrament of the Lord Jcfu^ 
wherein the Lord deals bountifully with your fouls, provides 
for you as a free gift the greateft mercy that ever was, the 
Lord Jefus Chrift crucified and he is willing that you (hould in- 
rich your felves with all the fulnefs of Chrift, fruflra manus ad 
Deum expandit qui banc ad pauperes nan txtendit, faid one, how 
canft thou exped much mercy who will (hew none ? 
Abufe not rhc 2. But I proceed unto the fecond general head, which was by 
bounty of God no means to abufe the liberality and bounty of Cjod unto you in 
unto you. t yf e external mercies : and here 1st me open unto you, 1 ,The 
wayes by which t hcfe bleffirigs are abufcd. 2. The great Jin and 
danger to abufe Gods external blejfings : 

i.Thewaies by which Gods outward bleffings are abufedarc 
Thewayfsby principally two, I. Iniquity. 2. Vanity. 
WhiCh d'b? $ f T ^ e y are a ^ u ^ wnen t ^ ie y arc mac * e ^ rv '^eable and cccafio* 
finzTare abu- n *l Hnt0 any iniquity I will give you fome fpecial inftances 
fed. for this : 

By iniqulry. 1 . When we make our pfeity the ground of an idle and unpro- 

Whenour fitable life • to live without any calling and employment, as if 
plenty 1$ the £)i v | ne goodnefs in any kind were a discharge from all induftry, 
ntfs! ° k "and that becaufe Cods hand of goodnefs increafeth, therefore 
we fhould turn Idols thac have hands and work not • or like 
-Solomon's lillies that (pin not ; live fo, as to be profitable nei- 
ther to God, nor man. This was one of the fins of Sodom % ful- 
nefs of bread, and idlenefs : Know we two things concerning 
this, viz,. 

That poor men muft not live idely becaufe God deals boun- 
tifully with others. For God made them not flies to fuck out 
the blood of others, but men endowed with reafon and ability 
to work, though not to give. That rich men may not live 
idely without a calling, becaufe of Gods plenty to them : A- 
dam had eftate large enough, and family little enough when 
God made him and put him into Paradife, yete^*»inthat 
good and great eftate was to work and till the ground, Think 
of this you who are in great Places, who with wonderful in ju- 
ry to your conferences, loife of your precious time, negle& of 
your poor foul<, advantage to vile temptations, unanfwerable- 
nets to Gods mercies, adventure of a dreadful account unto 


Vcr . 5 . TboH prcparcft a T<il>U before me^ &c. 271 

God, do nothing with all your mercies, and in all yourcour- 
fes, but lie down and deep, rife up and eat and play, go torch 
in meer idle and fruitlefs vifi?s, and thus you make an end of 
your time, of your mere es,of your fouls and all. 

2. When we confecrate, nay that word is not ftt^irfea tot ,'Ot lummy tad 
iml'Cze! Gu it b)u>vy an.l merci-s, to l".x:iry and drunk* nnefs , 1 tonnkew 
would to God there were no caufe to fpeak of this, but fo com- 
mon is: e of mercies this way, that we nny fear it to 

bco .- great tranfgrellion* for which God hath a con- 

trover Lie w»th thi»Jand. Go through all (brtsof menalmoft, 
where (hill you lind it otherwif-, but fwearmg, and drinking, 
and (hamcfulfpewin^, a tin fo vile thac the heathens anciently 
houted at it. The L 1 1 tkmtmi ws when any was drunk brought 
out their children to heboid him, thac fo they might learn: i 
deceit that fhaincful courfe^ and God in bis word threatens 
many a wo unto it, and judgment, my he poured do., n tbt 
flood on the old world, which was an eating and drinking won J, 
and the ApMile allures us that hell and damnation atteods it, 
1 Cor 6. 'Peter Va do from whom the w-tldenfes cime, was 
in company once, where they were drinking fomewhat freely, 
and one of the company prefently fell down dead ; this did io 
amaze his heart chat he turned wholly from that courfe unto a 
foberand holy life, confiderir.gif God fhould have (buck him, 
fo, &c. Ohthatthofe who are guilty of this fin, would now 
hear and fear, and do (o no more. 

3. A third (in is loftswtfii When perfbns grow proud and Of lofdnclfe. 
fcornful of their brethren, or of God, upon the plenty which 

God beftowesonthem. 

The Cyenenfes came to PUto and intreated Una to draw 
out fome wholfome lawes for them • who anfwered, That Tbt ir 
prosperity was too great to obey any I.i\\'es f were they never fo 
good. They forget the rock from whence they are hewen out, 
of what poor originals they fprung, and vim obligations all 
mercies are to a more faithful and humble ferv.ee of 
the Lord ^ whereas in a meaner condition,they could hold fome 
tolerable communion with God and do fomething in their fa- 
milies to advance his glory, be fomewhat induitrious for he 
>en, and not onely attend the ordinances, but feem to be fome- 
what confcionabJe to endeavour obedience to the Truths deli- 

272 Then prepareft a Table before me^&c. Vcr.5 

vered, and hold feme fair correfpondency with Gods fervants • 
Nowfince God hath lifted them up fas I may fo fay) from the 
dunghil, like a horfe well fed that kicks againft the rider- or 
the make that was warmed in the bofom, that flung the party 
to death- fo thefe forfake the Lord, flight his Ordinances, 
neglcd their familes, puff up their hearts, not a word of God 
or heaven, not a look at the Church, not a refpect to any of 
Gods people, but their hearts are fwollen with ftatelinefs and 
pride. I would fay thus unto fuch perfons h Firft, Man abhorres 
them. Secondly, God abhorres them. Thirdly , God will 
judge them, they are the bafeft of all unthankful wretches, and 
you feldom fee that profperity makes any proud, but God by 
fome great adverfity will abafeand depofe them, 

4. A fourth finunto which Gods plenty may be and is abu* 
Ofcarnal con- f e( j s [ s car „ a j curfidence. They make abundance their confi- 
fi Jcncc J ence ^ the W edge of gold their help ^ their wealth their firong 

and unmoveable mountain. Paul infinuates as much, when he 
chargeth Rich men not to be high-minded ; nor foolifh minded, 
to trufiin uncertain riches. The fool in the Gofpelfell unto 
this fecurity upon his plenty ; Soul take thine eafe , then haft 
goods laid up for many years ^ as if much outward goods could 
be defence, deliverance,fafety,comfort, happinefs to the perfon: 
whereas there is the fame nature of imperfection in much, as 
In a little (where every part is imperfect, the accede or conflu- 
ence cannot make it perfed ) and there is the fame ground of 
mutability in the fulleft, as in the loweit condition, a (hip is 
bigger then a boat, yet it may fink as foon ; the fulleft tides goes 
oflf aswellastheniep tides, and a flock of birds can flyaway 
as foon as a few. 

Si tibipulchra domui^fi fplendida menfa, quid inde , ? 

Your houfe is fair, your Table full, what then i 

Si [pedes auri^rgenti qucque ma ff a, quid inde} 

Of gold and filver maffie weights you boaft, what' then? 

Si tibi fponfa decora, (i fit gratiofa, quid inde ? 

Your wife may boaft of beauty, and of birth,what then? 

Si faveat mundus^fi prof per a cunt? a, quid inde } 

( what then ? 
You feem the Minion of the times, All hail is yours , 


Vcr.5. Jfoufrefareft a Table before me^&c« 2 73 

Tarn cite, tam cito puttereum h zc ut nthit inde ? 
As breath, or (hade, or tide, all thefc fall orT agen. 

Davils Mcuntain was quickly ihaken, and fob the greatcH 
man in tht Eufl , funk down to be the pooreft man in the 
world j you may make your plenty to be a itaff to walk with, 
but not to lean on. As the Philofopher faid of *sithens y that 
it was a City ad fere grin andum )ucunda y but ad inhabitandum 
ncn tuta y pleafant to fojourn in a while, but not fo fafe to dwell 
long in ; that I fay of all outward plenry, it may bj a comfort- 
able iV.ip in our paflage, but its a dangerous rock for ourtruft 
and confidence. 

5. A fifth fin is Covetonfnefs and love of the world : When Of Covecouf : 
this cup caufes a dropfie, and the table a Lethargy •, when the ncis * 
greater bounty of God doth contract our hands in giving, and 
enlarge our hems in thirfting after outward things , a droplic 
now is begotten , and a difeafe which will never be fatisfied , 
yet this is ordinary to find, the fijrteft hands and thevafte(t 
dt fires in the great eft eftates. Men are more taken up with the 
world, by how much the more they thrive in the world y the 
rich man commonly proves an old ufurer. There be other 
litis unto which men make the plenty of mercies ferviceable, 
as Opprefllon, and Injuftice, Uncleaonefs, Gaming, &c. „ 

Let us now behold in the next place, the fin and the danger 
of abufing Gods plenty thus to the fervice of our iniqui- q( c hi$ abufe of 
ties « ( \ GoJs plcocy, it 

1. This abufe it is a compounded injury, an injury compoun is 

ded of many injuries, and indignities. Injurious. 

I .god ps injurioufly abuftdThz Apoftle calls ift> a d'fpifing of To God. 
the riches of his £ood«efs , Vrhen they lead us not to Repentance. 
Rem. 2.4. What then might he phrafe it, when we pofitively 
make the riches of divine goodnefs to be as Brokers forourfil- 
thinefs and wickednefs , to fin againft a kind, very kind God. 
But again, it is the moft unkind return for all kindnefs^ when 
the very goodnefs of God (hall be made asabellowes to in- 
flame the heart with (inning againft God; and where the more 
kindnefs has appeared. 

2. The mercies are extremely abvfed: They arc opprelTed J^f^ U:C C$ 
and perverted and made to fcrve againft their matter •, a .cry 

N n v.o- 

274 Thou prep arefi dTablc be fort mt, &c. Vci%5. 

violence done to them, as in the Law \ violence is more dang? 
rous then confent. We. do t cut the throat of them , and u(e 
them worfethenD4^/merTengersbyftT4««», we do not only 
rob them of their excellency ,but conftrain them to take armes 
as it were againft God himfelf. 
To our Souls. 3. OurfouJesareabufedbjit: For as all (inning contracts 
a guilt , fo the (inning under mercies increafeth the guilt , 
Sec Ja. $.1,1,3. and the more plentiful the mercies have been, the more 
degree of intenfive guile is now redundant to the foul , for the 
finful abufe of them. Not only the fins will come and accufe 
thee at the bar of juftice, but the mercies of God as abufed, 
will likawife rife up and give in evidence againft you, how you 
forced them, &c. and it will be a fad day when thy health 
(hall Hand at the judgment feat with luft in it , and thy power 
with oppreffion in it , and thy wealth with covetoufnefs in it f 
and thy ftrcngth with uncleannefe in it, and thy plenty with 
profanenefs in it. 
Caufelcfs. 2. Itxszmoft canfelefs form of finning, when God doth fo 

blefs a man, that there is not only the mercy proper for him and 
his condition,but he hath it in an abundant meafure,wbat reafon 
hath this man to tranfgrefs •, the more mercy the lefs reafon to 
fin, to fee a poor almoft ftarved beggar to fteal, is not fo much 
as o behold a wealthy man to rob ; what caufe haft thou to 
fuck out the blood of the needy , and to skrue the bread out 
of the hands of the needy, who haftfuch a plenty of thine 
own? what reafon canft thou give that thou fhouldft turn thy 
felf into a fenflefs ftock , or a reeling (hip , or a fwinifh beaft 
by drunkennefs , who haft a plentiful cup given to refrefh thee 
and the bowels of others. 
Ptfjudlcial. The fumof all is this ^ thou wilt raife an exceeding cry in 
thy confeience, and an unceflant clamour in thy mercies (which 
are as weary of thee) as the children of Jfrael , of their bon- 
dage ) and a cry in the foules of others againft thee,whom thou 
haft by the abufe of mercies involved into the fame tranfgrefli- 
ons , and fome fevere judgment to ftrip thee of thy mercies , 
and toconfumethee with mercies. See Zf v. 18, 28. foel 1. 5. 

Ajbufenot Hof. 2. 9.12. 

Goh Bounty Buc I proceed to the fecond way wherein men do abufe the 

IpVjwity. plenty of Godf goodnefs to them, viz. to Vanity : and»that 

is twafold either Qf.i>FcaftiHg.2 t App*rilli»g. u To 

Vcr.5 . Tb& f re f ar *ft a T *Me btfore me, rjrc 2 7 5 

I. To F*«fti»g\ the miferable fin of this City, wherein By t«ftin&. 
as if men were born only to eate, there are dayes without num- 
ber, fpentby many in nothing elfe^ut in an unmeafurable and 
excefiive luxurioulnefs of prcvifion , as if thofe of c^trnh 
were alive •, Ut us eat and drink for to mcrrcw we /half die. We 
have made our felves the Proverb of the world , that we build 
as if Xce Were to live for tver , and eat at if we were to die pre- 

Objetl. But it is objected, did not Abraham makea/i?*/?, 
did not Levi the publican entertain our Saviour with a feaft ; 
had not the primitive Chriftians their Love Feafts ? Is liberality 
of cheer utterly againft the liberty of Chriftians now. 

Sol. I anfwer, No.Feafting, abfolutely> and (imply, is not un- 
lawful • theinftances alledged prove \o much, and belidcs them 
we read that God himfelf appointed to his people folemn times o/F"^ * Ul ~ 
feafting^ Deut.i6.i$. But yet in refpett of Circumftanccs , 
Fcaftings may be very unlawful, and men offend in it. 

i . When the feafting is unfea/onable for the timet , as in the When unfeafdr 
time of common judgments and calamities on our felves or o- n . &blc for thc 
thers. When the Lord is wroth with us or with his Chur- timcr 
ches, Ifa. zz. 1 1. In that daj did the Lord God of hoftr call 
to Keeping, and to mourning y and to baldnejfe 9 and to girding with 
fackfloth, v. 13. And behold joy andgladnefs , flaying of oxen\ 
filling of/btep, eating flefh and drinking of Veine , lit m eat and 
d'inkj or to morrow ^toe fh all die ^ v. L4. It Veas revealed in mine 
tATtisby the Lord of hofts, fur el y this iniquity fhall not be purg- 
ed from you , till you die, faith the Lord God of hefts ; The un> 
feafonablenefs of it made it an high iniquity, Amos 6.4. They 
eate the lambs out of the fiocl^ , and the calves out of the midft 
oftheftall, v. 5. They chaunt to the found of the Viol, V.6- And 
drink^Vvine i* bowls and anoint themf elves with the chief Oint- 
ment, but they art not grieved for the affitlion of fofeph , v. 7. 
Therefore now fhall they go captive Vvith the firft that go captive^ 
and the banquet of them that jlr etched themf elves fhall be remov- 

2. When the feafting is difproportionable for 4 mans eflate ; When difpro- 
a large fail fee upon a little boat : a moderate eftatc and yet ^° n ^ c J° r 
immoderate proviiion. Two things are unfeemly. 1. To fee 
a rich man penurious* z. and a poor man riaous. 

N n 2 3. Whco 

" ij6 Thou prepare/l 4 Table before me, &c Vcr. J. 

Wh:n Pcejuii- 3. When its prejudicial to a mans health - % an eating not for 
eial to t mans ftrength, but for difeafes, till we furfet again. 
fVh' ' I c m- 4' When it is incommodious to the duties of a mans place, that 
modioos to the he is thereby difabled for a II holy meditation?, prayer, reading, 
Dacies of our hearing, and alfo for the duties of his particular calling, fit- 
place, ter to fleep then work. 

When made an 5* When it is only made an artificial (npplement, andlncen- 
Arcificial fup- tive to ltt(ls s as many di (lies are purpofely invented and com- 
plement to pofed , not to fatisfte or refresh nature , but to foment and af- 
lufts. fift the Jufts of men,this is to become a Cook to the Divd. 

6. When Irreligion begins the feaft, and uncharitablenefs takes 
When, there L$ fT C n e c | oc h ; m y meaning is, where there is no minding of 
God*" and *hc ^°d that gives thefe plenties, but fwearing and roaring, fcarce 
poorinourfea-fo little as to defire his bleiling and guidance, and afterwards 
fting. no remembrance of the poor who would be glad of the crums 

which fall from our Table , and of the offals which we rather 
tread under our feet , then think of putting into their bellies • 
'Dives did feaft thus. 
When it is an 7. When it is** ordinary , every dayesworl^ is a feaft as ma- 
ordinary every n y contrive every day whereto meet and be drunk the next; 
days work. fo others , how to renew a fuperfluous Table, So that the 
whole life is a Table-life, made a Gueftat the Table, and men 
are even taken from the Table and the world at once , without 
any care and provifion all this while for their famiflied fouls. 

I conje&ure that thefe Circumftancial ingredients in feaftings 
are like the Prophets herb which made them cry out that there 
was death in the pot: God grant that we be not guilty, or if 
fo,that we prefently reform. 

SecondIy,To apparelling ^ where all the bounty of Gods is turn- 
By tppirel. ec j | tK0 a ftQ^on and gaudy fute.I know that there is a necefti-' 
ty and conveniency of apparel > they that wear f oft raiments 
ve in Kings houfes y faid our Saviour. Kings and Queens and 
great Perfonages may lawfully exceed others in the beauty and 
coftlinefs of their robes, without any fin or offence ; but there 
are many faults andabufes of Gods mercies by inferiour people 
this way. 
By an indiftin- i. An indiftinEtion of the Sexes : When women turn men 
<%io.i of Sex:s. and but that jthey (haw to the full their large and naked brefts, 
a difference could noc be fo well difcerned. 

Vcr.). Thou pre par eft a Table be for erne } &C. 277 

2. An indiftinElion of places and callings : Thus amongft Ul An indiftin- 
the fcrving- man goes like t s eGenleman and when a ftranger * ,ono * c, l* 
approacl eth the houfe , he would by the cloths rather take the "^ 

man to be the matter. And fo for women ^ every citizens wife 
flants it and braves it with her curled locks, fparkling Diamonds, 
rich Gowns, as if they htdbecn the children of the mighty, and 
yet neither their birth nor their place J and ^condition of the 
husband can bear this. 

3. A flrangenefs of *:ti*e , and perpetual incenftancy . half B > f a ftran S«* 
naked and half clothed, one day buttoned like aCappuccine ot A:arc * 
Fryer, and the next as open as f an Inn-, asif aChnftian fhould 

make an ape of himfelf, every day be ready to imitate every odd 
fancy , and ftrive how to deform himfelf. Now I meet a man 
in a garment as long as LmtrnSs fhroud, and a while after I 
meet him in a new impreflion, it is as (hort as his girdle. And 
as for women they are fo like themfelves in the levity of appa- 
rel, that it isalmoft unconceivable how to defenbe their rirft 
or their lalt falhion. To all which if weconlder how much 
pride there is out of which all this grows, and how much difpen- 
dittm of precious houres, and many times, what crufhings of e- 
ftates,and fometimes occafions to crufh our conferences with 
fin- we will confefle that there is in this fubje& a great a- 
bufe of Gods mercies to the making up of a mcer vanity. 

I now proceed to the laft particular, which refpe&s the effe- 
ctual, and as it were, irrefiftable collation of all this good upon 
D.ivid, notwithstanding all the diftafte. and oppofition of his 
enemies ; Thou prepare/} a Table before me y in the prefence of 
mine enemies , (.i.) Hftibut vidtntibus imo & invidentibiu. 
Whence this Proportion is obfervable , 

That notwithftanding all the evil dijiafles, and devices , and Doit, 
prattifes of evil men, god will plentifully blefe hu people. Here No'wltihnd- 
arc two things confidcrablc, i: S *J chc **J 

1. Thit evil men have not only evil hearts againft the inward l * 3 g °<| *k\ 
dignity of Holinefle, but alfo againlt thr ou Vsxrd yofperity flfplendfu lyblcffl 
greatneffe beftowed on Gods fervants, not only their goodnefs his people, 
but alfo their greatnefTe is a great eye-fore unto them : Not E'il mm have 
that outward greatnefTe is the thing which they hate formally ^HJ^T* *" 
andqbje&ivelyffor that is it which they love ah jve ail things) ^ . J. |J!' 
butonly pcrfonilly orconcom:tantly,becaufe good men ( whom y tGjds people 


278 Thou frcftrtft aTabiebef ere mtt&c. Vcr, 

they hatej do poffefle thefc things. There is not only Invidia, 
an envy, that they do rife when fometimes the other fink ; but 
alfo Indignations di(dz.in that they fhould poflefle any com- 
This appears, fort at all •, His horn [halt be exalted Vrith honour. Pfal. 1 12. 1 a 
The nicked Jball fee it and be grieved Joe fhall gnafhVvithhu teeth t 
&c. And this appears, 
By their deje- Firft, By that dejeclion of fpirit in them upon the profperity of 
aion of fpirit b iy men% Hamans heart was ready to burft, he hafted and went 
at their profpc- homc mourning and covered his head becaufe otMordecai's ad- 
nty ' vancement, Eft. 6 12. 

By their fubtil- Secondly, By that fubtilty of fpirit in laying fnares for their 

ty in laying ruine-. As when Daniel was preferred by Darius f ch.6 3. 

fnares ht&™ Then the Prefidents AndTrinces fought to find occafion against 

tuir.c. y tm ^ an( j on jy f ounc j i t \ n hi s fi nC erity to his God ± and wrought 

the King, That rvhofoever fhould asl^ any petition of any God or 

man for thirty dayes s fave of the King, fhould be caft into the den 

of Lions ,V. 7. 

By their lying Thirdly, By that lying pretence of fpirit Juggefting fat fe accu+ 

fujgeftions fat ions again ft them to thofe in authority. As when Ztrubba* 

ajainft them. ^/ an d Jofhua were favoured fo far as to build the Temple, then 

did Rehum and Shimfhai and others write and accufe them to 

Artaxerxes , that they were a rebellious people that would 

not pay Toll , nor Tribute , nor Cuftome , &c. Ezra 4, 


By their hofti- Fourthly, By their hcflility of Spirit, either private and trea- 

iity of fpirit. c herous in feeking the fubverfion of their flouriftiing profperity, 

as the Papifts againft us in the powder plot • or elfe publick and 

profeffed, as they againft us in 88. anfwering herein the out- 

ragiousa&s of the ancient enemies of the Church, who if they 

could notblaft the honour of it with difgrace, fought to bury 

and drowne the whole &ate of it in blood. 

bleffedmLiy cf plowing, and attempting Q<d hath plentifully bleffed many of 
bisfcrvants. his ferv ants and people. Infhncesand demonstrations whereof 
abound to our hands in Sacred and Ecclefoftical Story •, Jacob y 
howinjurioufly and fraudulently did Laban deal with him? 
in the day the droughth confumed him, and the froft by night, 
(7*0.3 1.40. Twenty years he ferved in Labans houfe, of the 
which, 14. he ferved for his wives, and fix for his eattei: and 


Vcr.j. Thou prepare^ Table before me^ &c. *19 

his wages were changed ten times. Buc God did fee his arttid,- 
ons, and all that Laban did unco him, and bleffed him ; and the 
manincreafed exceedingly, and had much cattel , and maid-, r er- 
vants, and men-fervxnts , and camels , and ajfts. fofeph , 
how ftrangely and unnaturally was he handled by his brethren ? 
They envied the favour which his father (hewed him, and con- 
trived firft his death, but qualified it at length with his fale to the 
M'dUri r#y f and they put him off to an Egyptian Courtier, and 
he unjuftly fends him to the prifon,and yet God doth blefle and 
advance him to be a Prince and Lord in the land of Egypt, The 
Jfraelites are envied by Pharaoh and his people who were griev- 
ed at their mightinefle, Exod. i . 9, io,t i . and cunningly contri- 
ved * greater bondage for them by fetting task mailers over 
them to artiid them with burdens. Buc (faith the Text) The 
more they affl' tied them, ths more they mult iplyed and grew : as 
iftheir dealings had proved like fhowers of rain , which makes 
the corn and grafle to flourifli. Davidis another pregnaat m- 
ftance, whofe excellency, and fidelity, and fuccefle, and Gods 
favour procured him the envy, and then the deadly hatred, and 
then the mortal plots, and then the hoftile attempts of King 
Saul for his life ^ yetnotwithftandingall the deadly intentions 
of Saul, and all the malicious and falfe accufations of Cttjb 
and Doeg, &c. God did advance him to the Throne and 
eftablifhed the Kingdom in his hand. See P/4/.18. You 
read the fame of LMordecai &nd the Jewes, of whom , though 
Haman proclaimeth, Thus (hall it be done to the man whom 
the King will honour ; yet we may rather fay, Thus (hall it be 
done to the man whom God will blefle. 

There are three fpecial things which might be obferved out 
of all this, 

1 . That the malicious envy of evil men hath not been able to 
hinder bleflings from defcending upon the godly. 

2. That it hath not been able to tear off the bleiTings which 
have defcended. 

3 . That upon their greater fretting and contriving^ God yet 
hath added more bleiTings upon his fervants. So that God 
hath bleffed, and hath fetled his bleiTings, and hath augmented 
his bleftings on them. He hath given them pofleiiion, and 
they have^ept polTeilion and have flourifhftj in the fame. Con- 

280 jheufrepArtfi a Tabic before me^ &c. Vcr.5 

tra Gentes , though the heathens have raged and imagined a 
vain thing. 
Rcafons of ir. And the reafons of all this are •, 

GjdonlyiS ( £# God only i 3 the Lord of all blffftngs \ There is a blefling 

L^iT ° d °pn ^Y wa y °fbenedittion^ thus we biefle God and man ^ and a ble£ 
inJ8 i4.V.^ D 8' ) y w ^yof ^»e^ip«,andthusitispropertoGodto blefs. 
* Blefling s are by way of propriety end right, The earth U the 
Lords and thtfulnefs thereof : And by way of authority , He 
rtileih in the Kingdomes ofmen^ And givexh it to whomever he 
ni/l, Dan,4,T7-.' Ifhe be the Lord,he may then do with his own 
what he pleafeth. 
Blcffinssbs Secondly, As bleflings belong to him by way of Sovera : gn- 
loiifcto God by ty , fo they alfo belong unto him by way of Cattfality. Men 
way of ^Caufa- may be either the fervantsof blefling, or the inftruments of 
M*y- blefling, but God only is the caufe, he is the fountain whence 

all the waters flow. And what caufe is he , furely an effectual 
caufe , fuch a caufe as if he peremptorily fets upon the work 
the erfed will follow. Two things (hew a caufe to be effedual, 
One is refolution of will , the other is , fufficiency of power. 
Gods powerful willing is as much as the fuccefleful effecting of 
a mercy , for it is the intire caufe, There needs no more to 
the production of our mercies then his power and will, 
ergo ; 
God doth no: * Thirdly, god doth not all depend upon kicked men in the 
ac ail depend benediction ef his fervants : if there were a neceffary concourfe 
upon wicked Q ^ q qc j an( j t f, em ^ tnat fa one mu ft wor ^ as we Ji as fa ther, 

bUffinV of fais^ 11 theceffation on the one part might be an impediment to 

fervants. the production on the other part (as is evident in all partial and 
concuring caufes,). As if a mans motion depends partly on his 
Staff, and partly on his leggs, if either fail him, the motion 
al fo failes him ; Or as a cheft where two men have two keys , 
both muft come to open for the treafure. But God,Hn the ads 
of benedidion, hath no dependance on evil men - 9 they concur 
not with him, neither ^r modum prwcipii, for he alone is the 
caufe ; oar per modum auxilii, for he without them can biefle 
his all : The creatures have fuch an immediate dependance up- 

_ on his pleafure and power, that ad nutumjt the beck of it,t hey 


rieafurc! Fourthly , Their malicious renitencj offpirit , or attempt a- 


Vcr.5 « fhm prep *r eft a Table before me, &c. i?JL_ 

gain ft Gods blcffing of hit people, is tec impotent to frnft^ate 

Gods intention *»df leaf tire. An effectual impediment muft noc 

onely have contrariety in it, but fuperiomy ; a drop of water 

cannot [UC O'JC the fire, for though it ha*h a contrary nature, yet 

it hath i.ot a greater porvr . now the malice and contrivances of 

cvii men, they are too fhort and weak for the Divine intention 

of bleiVing, which is accompanied with an almighty arm. Noc 

onely the perfons but the actions of evil men are fubordinatc to 

God, and as their good intents and acts are fubordinate to his 

afliftance, fo their evil are fubordinatc to his admittance; juft 

as acts of inferiour Courts are revocable and voidable by the 

fuperiour. Hence it was that Balaam (one hired to curfe the 

people of God by Bala\, Come curfe me Jacob, andcf.me, de* 

fie I frail, Numb. 2 3.7.) yet when he came to act this, he was at 

a ftand, he could not do it, but cries out v.$. Hew /bail I curfe 

whom God hath not cur fed > or how ftall I defie, whom the Lord 

hath not dtfed} v. 20. Behold I have received a command t$ 

blefs, and he hath Me (fed, and I cannot reverfe it, and thereupon 

c. 24.1 3. heprofefleth unto 2?*/^ that if he would give him 

his houfe full of filver and gold, he would not go beyond the 

command of the Lord, to do either good or bad, of his own 


Lattly, Evil men are but men, and God is a God , and being n f H men arc 
but men, they can do no more then men. The Lord will deer but metij and 
it to all the world, that he rules the earth, and that his cr.unfrfG^ i* * G ^» 
{ball /land, and where he blefleth, thatman fhall beblefled^ 
and whom he curfeth, that man (hall becurfed- that the crea- 
tures can do neither good, nor evil > that his people are the ge- 
neration of his care and love, though living in the miJft of 
deadly enemies. Nay if God fhould be hindered by evil men 
from bleffing of his people, then his people fhould never be 
blefled, and there were no living for them on earth. ijfe 1. 

Now to the application of this, Firft, it feems to convina ' I: conv.i 
folly of evil men who are enemies to all the Graces, and al! the the folly of cvM 
comforts of Gods people , and take much upon them to mcn, . whosrc 
threaten and terrific and crufh them. I tell thee, O thou evil o'ds^cple. 
enemy : W to thou arc 

i» When thou drt rotting and (linking in the GrMVi'. VCt rottirg i» the 
fhall the righteous flourifb • 2. When thou halt wound Vp5 r » YC ' lh I 

O o trv' 1 " «* 

I - ■ I - I I I I ■ > ■ 

282; thou frefareft a Table before me^Scc. Vcr.5 

Tboufiiak nc^rfiy hatred and plots to the hi gheft, yet thou (halt neither effeft 
tfcd :he evil t ^ t eVi i t h at t l 3l)H j Qe ft intend, nor hinder the good which God 
not\^dcrtht dahirtte,t ^ ^ou haft not power to ad all that evil which is in 
good GjiTin- Mty w ^» nor co P ut by an y °f tnat S 00 ** which is in Gods pur- 
ccads. pole. Men may ftop the lower conduits, but who can (lay the 

clouds from dropping ? It is eafie to blow out a candle, but is 
it pofliblc for any man to withhold the Sun from nfirg? So 
great is the love of God to his people that he will do them 
good ^ fo great is his faithfulnefle that he hath bound himfelf to 
do them good j fo greatis u his power that in defpight of thee 
he can do them good,nay if he pleafe to magnifiehis arm, he 
can make the very enemies of his people to become their foot- 
ftool, as Haman^nd ftrip them as he did the Egyptians, and 
put their ornaments and their honours upon his own people. 
Shall their unbelief (faid theApoftle of the Jews) makexoid 
the truth of God} fo here, think you that the malice of men 
(hall make void the love of God, the intentions of God, the 
promifes of God, the oath of God, the power of God ? Why 
then wilt thou curfe, where God will bkfs t is there any likeli- 
hood, to bind almightinefs > to overcome and alter God? though 
thou wilt prefumptuoufty fight againft him. 
^r ^ , It may ferve to animate the people of God even in the midft of 
It-may animate a ^ enemies, and uppofitions, and dangers, yet to truft upon the 
the people of Lord for his bleffi*gs and their good • not to giveup their ex- 
God to truft pedations and hopes of good for the.,malice<and infolency of 
jipon the Lord ey jj Rien ^ £ or t ^ Q Lord here prepares a table for Z>*z//W inde- 
of 'all caemir . *P l S nC °^ ms enemies. There are four things which may keep 
'up their hearts and hopes for the blefiings which they do 
©od ontly is 1.. God cntly hthe Lord of bhffmgs : Not a bleffing in their 
u!ffl d ° f encm ies bands but all in Gods ; All their mercies, fup plies, 
*** comforts, as they are not in their own hands, fo neither in their 
enemies hands, but every one of them in Gods hands. 
This God Is 2* This God is their <jid • the God of bleffitigs is their blef- 
tbtir God. fed God, theirs in lingular affection, theirs in an everlaftrng 
Covenant ( Gen. 12. 2: / will blefs ther, and wake thy name 
g*eat % and thou {bait beableffing) he hath made a Covenant 
of mercy and peace with them, to blefs them , and neverto 
itirn away from doing of them good, 7rr.32.4g. 

3 There . 

Vtr.5« Tfottprepareft dTdble before mt^Lt. 283 

3. There is net hing in God to alter his intentions of good j for There is no- 
his love is immutable, and his faithfulnefs fhall never fail, and f ^t in G;d to 
the motive of his goodnefs (which is his own gracioufnefsj re- ^ ^ ijJJJj*' 
mains for ever. 

4. There is nothing in evil men which can fruftrate the com- There it no- 
mnmcation of any lleffi»g (which God intends unto thee )thinfc in evil 
whether it be greater or lefler, for it is r.ot the r will, but Gods ™ tD ■**' 
will which mult ftand,not their malice, but Gods providence. E£5o|J 
What greater power is there in evil men to hinder any good 

from thee, then to hinder any evil from themfelvcs ? God 
hath defeated their intentions many a time, but didft thou ever 
know or hear, that any evil man was able to defeat Gods inten- 
tions? haft thou not read, haft thou not known that power 
belongs unto the Lord, and that the Lord doch whacfoever he 
will in heaven and on earth ? 

Ob. Never object that evil men plot ruine, threaten ruine, 
are able to ruine, and particularly intend thy ruine, and to fleece 

Sol. Butai David faid, let them enrfe J>ut O Lord blefs thw,*M>™9>**' 
fo fay I, do thou commit thy perfon and expectations unto the 
Lord : the enrfe eaufelefs /hall not come • men can neither make Pr0Y ' l *'** 
us, nor marre us. ][*ac laid of Jacob, J have bltffed him, and 
he fhall be bitted •, fo the Lord of thee, I have covenanted with 
him to do him good, to profper him,snd certainly thou (halt be 
blcfTed and profper. Let evil men do what they can for them- 
felves, yet they fhall never profper, but fhall be curfed, Prov. 
3.33. The enrfe of the Lord is in the hottCe of the wicked \ and 
goodmersprofperity, (let evil men do all they can) (hall not 
be hindred by them. Doeft thou think that God will lofe the 
honor of his faithfulnefs ? the honour of his paternal affeftion? 
the honour of his fpecial providence ? the honor of his gracious 
Covenint, for to give way to the unjuft malice and vile fpirits 
of vileft perfonr? 

Thirdly, You have lingular eanfe to go on cheerfully in the r 

ferviceof God. As the Apoftlefaid, if ye be followers of that „ J* ** r 
L-i • / • ~i i . 1 /if/ J ^ r* r r You have cau* 

Vphtcb is good, who ts he that will harm you} 1 Pet. 3. 13. fo fay t0 - on chccr . 

I, if ye go on in a good courfe, who is he that can hinder you faty i n the 

of any good mercy ? No people in the world have any fuch fervice of Go4» 

encouragements to hold on their courfe as good people have , 

Od2 for 

2 84 Thoupreyarefl a Table before me, &c. Vcr.5 . 

for they have a God that will keep cff ail evil from them > his 
defence is over them in a good way, his truth is their fhield and 
buckler : that will withhold no gcod thing from them y but will 
blefs his people with the blefTing of peace, of all good : and 
no evil men can kinder any one comjo^t for foul or bcdy^ whiles it 
is good for them. What a comfortable encouragement is this 
to any man walking in the wayes of God ? that if he lift up 
his eyes he may lee a Covenant filled with all promifes of good 
for the foul, and for the body ; for this life, and for the life to 
come; and all thefe refpectively made over unto him fo far as 
expedient and good, for he delights in the profperity cf his pec- 
fle y Pfal.jj.27. and withall fees the Angel as it were keeping 
this tree of life, my meaning is, the refolute will of God and 
almighty power itretched out to execute all this good, that if 
heaven and earth fhould combine together, they could not di- 
vert, or hinder the leaft mercy from him. Therefore let us 
carefully and cheerfully ferve our good God ^ remember but 
this, our own evils hinder us of more good then all the evil men 
of the earth can do. 
Z)f A: ^ et r ^ e P eo Pk °f God walk not onely cheerfully, but car e- 

Walk carefully f^J ^° vt ^ *^ e * r ^°^' Step n0t a ^ c ^ rom ^ ltn ' S r ' eve mm not » 

with your provoke him not, For 1. Though wicked men cannot, yet 

God. your own mckjdnejfes may hinder bleffings^ take off bleffings, 

bringdown fore miferies, and it is a great aggravation to fin fo 

after biefifings, 'Deut.iz. 2. It is the way to get more blefflngs, 

we need a bleffing God frill, to blefs our perfons and our 

actions, &c. 

Vfe 5. Blefs ye the people ef God- btefe them in your 1. Judgment rl 

BUfs the peo 1. Words. 3. 'Deeds {or 1 .It is an honour to imitate God to be 

fie of God. like him. 2 It is your benefit , Gen. 12.3. 1 will blefs them that 

blefs thee, and curfe him that curfeth thee, Be not an adverfary 

to them, fori, yet God will blefs theai. 2. He will curfe you. 

P'SA K* 




Verf. 6 Surely goodnejs and mercy Jhall follow 
me all the dayes of my life f and I will 
dwell in the houfe of the Lord for ever. 

THESE words are the fweet conclufion of Davids 
Pfalm,the firft verfc began with Gods fpecial pre- 
vidence . and this laft doth end with his God's 
continual goodnefs ^ in which you have 
1. Davia's confidence, and there 

1. The matter of which he is confidentjt is, 

I. Goodnefs. 
And 2. Mircy. 

2. The relation or habitude in a peculiar way of thefe to 

hfa) \_{hJl folloW me ^ 

3. The extent of time [alltbe d.tyes ef my life~] 

4. The form of his confidence Q fur ly ] vox fidciS 

2. Dtvii's con/cifnee [_a»d I will dure! I in the hvfife of the 
L->ri for ever~\ Conftancy of mercy and conitancy of duty, 
meet together in Gods people. 

I brgin with the firit of thefe ( Surely goodnefs and mercy 
P?aII follow me all the dayes of mj Hfi».) 

Goodnefs is taken three wayes - y cither radically, for that China's. 


286 Surely Goodntfs and Mercy fhdl follow me y &c. Vcr 6 

nature which is not only good, but goodnefle it felf. Or cau- 
[ally , for the fountain or fpring of all the good which is deri- 
ved to the fons of men. Or virtually , for the effe&s and pecu- 
liar good things which How from that radical and caufal 
Mercy. And foOWercy may be taken either effentially for that nature 

which is fo ready to pity, and help, and blefle, and fuccoar ; or 
caufally , for that divine gratioufnefle which is the fpring of all 
our mercies ; or virtually, for the mercies exhibited and confer- 
red on us. 
Both. *B° th which y in their kinds, are of two forts, either Spiritual \ 

which refped the condition of the foul for a better life, as di- 
vine favour, all the graces of the Spirit, divine affiftance, 
3cc. Or Temporal, which refped the condition of the perfon 
for the things of this life, as peace, wealth, health, liber- 
ty, &c. 

Interpreters have feveral conjectures which of thefe kinds 
David here intends , whether the Spiritual or the Temporal • 
for my part I conjecture thus, That implicitly the Spiritual may 
be here thought on, but explicitly and primarily, the continua- 
tion of Gods goodnefle and mercy in Temporals is here under- 
stood. Yet becaufc I will not go alone, I will briefly unfold 
either of the opinions in a twofold Propofition. 
, I . That Spiritual goodnefle and mercy Jhall follow the people of 
Cod all the dayes of their life. 

2. That Temporal goodnefle and mere j ft. all follow the mall 
the dajes of their life* 

I will but touch on the former and infift more on the latter , 
as being ( in my judgment ) of primary intention in the 

Eo& I. That Spiritual goodnefle and mercy Jhall follow the p topic of 

SplritnalWoi- G°d *titke dales of their life. For the opening of the Afferti- 
nefs and mercy on, premife with me a few things, 

(hall follow i. That Spiritual goodnefle and mercy is threefold; name- 

Gods people jy^ cither, Divine Gracioufneft, which is that Angular favour 
^^"^. and love which God in and through Chrift hath unto hispeo- 
neffe and mer- pie. This in Scripture is fometimes called the Grnce of God , 
cy h richer, fometimes the Favour of God, fometimes his Kindneffc, fome- 

Divine Graci- t j m€S his Love, fometimes his Loving kindneffe, fometimes hit 
cufcefc. Mercyj 

Ver.6. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy frail follow mc y Scc. 287 

Mercy, fometimes his Sure mercies. Divine Graces, which . . 
arethofe renewing habits or qualities of holinefle, whereby our DlancGraccJ ' 
hearts are made holy, as facred knowledg, juftifying faith, Jove 
unfeigned , &c. 'Divine Comforts,** peace in confeiencejov m • r 

1 . , 1 ^1 (v rt e r n • )\ . L>I»inc Com- 

in the HolyGhoft, aliurance of ourcrtfent intereftin Godf or:s , 
and Chrift , and of the heavenly Manfions of glory here- 

2. That God may follow his people with thefe many wayes, G*i fbllowctl 
either in refped of, i.his intention and affection, 2. his af- his P«°pl« wi:b 
fiftance and prefervation, 3. his concurrence and augmentati- the:c man T 
on, 4. Evidence and manifestation. wa) ' s ' 

Now then if you, 

1. Take fpiritual goodneffe and mcrcyfor Divine gradatf- £>; v i ne f a 
nefs or favour t this doth alwayes follow the people of God m dochalwiyci 
refpett of intention andajfetlion • for whom the Lord loves once follow them i 1 
he loves unto the end: but it doth not alwayes follow them in ttipt& of in- 
refpetl ofevtder.ee and manifefiation. <sffaph in this fenfe ex- ^gj 00 *** **' 
populates, fVill the Lord be favourable no more} and, u his tjuc not alwaici 
mercy clean gone for ever ? Ffa! 77.7. Not that the Sun didmrcfp.ft of*- 
not rife, but becaufe it was under a cloud •, not that Gods fa • viuence ani 
vourable love did ceafe , but that he had not the evidence of manifcihiion 
it: Like as a Star doth (hine in the heaven, though a weak eye 
many times mifleth the place and fight of it* 

2. So again, Take fpintual mercy and goodnelTe for Divine Divine com- 
cemfcrts, peace, joy, afTurance, &c. thefe do not follow us inforcsdonocal- 
their t fells, though they may be faid to follow us in their causes wayci follow 
all cur dayet • ( #'.) A Chrillian hath not alwayes actual peace, " s m lbcir cf ~ 
and adual joy, and actual afTurance- for there is many times j hc s u h th 
trouble in his confeience, and griefs in his foul, and tears in his f ii O r» us all 
eyes, and fears and queftionings whether God be 1 is God, andourdayesiu 
whether mercy belongs to him, yet in the Caufe he hath thefe hci » "««.«• 
alwayes : As a mans inheritance may be furcin the Caufe 
(namely, his fathers arTc&ion and purpofe ) and fure in the 
means of conveyance, namely, in the bonds and instruments 
(though he unneceffarily queitions his perfonal validity and ti- 
tle many times.) In like manner the Chiiitian (uprightly walk- 
ing) hath alwayes caufal peace and joy, &c. in a reconciliati- 
on with God, and through his Covenant, though not alwayes 
aftual, &c, 

3, Take • 

288 Sure/y Goodnefs and Mercy flullfollcw me, &c. Vcr.6. 

Divine Graces 3. Take fpiritual mercies and goodnefle for the Graces of 
Gsd follows Cocis Spirit, ("which come from admirable mercy, and are the 
th c m x!^ rcfp great tokens of his goodmtfej God doth follow his people in 

OX tnelC. r n. r^i_ r 

refpect ofthefe. 
.WithPrefcrva- Firft % With Prefervation^ 1. Really, though not equally, 
don. 2. ; Effectually, though not alwayes fenfibly • 3. Perpetually, 

not for a time only. The GlafTe may fall , but it (hall not be 
broken, Grace may be battered by Temptation and bruifed by 
Corruption, yet it is preferved. Even thefe ftars he keeps 
up with his right hand, he will not fuffer this feed to 
die , nor this fmoking flax to be quenched , the gates of 
hell fhall not prevail againft it, nor all the winds and (torms caft 
down this houfe. That faith wheh preferves us to falvation, is 
preferved ftill by the power of God. There are two things 
which God will keep for ever, the one is his own Truth, the o- 
ther is the Graces of his people ^ and therefore as his love will 
never turn away from you,fo he puts his fear into his people that 
they (hall never depart from him. 

Secondly, With Augmentation : Which though it cannot 
WjtfeAugm«i-b c affirmed in refpeft of every particular inch of time,yet in re- 
wtlon ' fped of the courfe and ftate of Grace it doth hold, that God 

will ftill follow his people with fuch a fucceflion as it were of 
help and divine influence,till their Graces come to that meafurc 
of perfection wherein he intends his own glory by them in this 
iifti there may be many fickneffes, and yet the child come at 
length to a full man ; fo many failings, fl .ps, (Innings, and. yet 
God by his Spirit and Ordinances doth advance our Graces. 
The Lord doth aiwayes keep the Graces of his fervants, and in 
t v e event enlarge them -though there be not always an equal in- 
fluence from God upon our graces,though fometimes it is great- 
er, fometimes leffer, yet fuch a continuation there is of it, as 
Gad doth thus effectually ferves to uphold it, and finally ferves for increafe and 
follow his peo-growth. 

pic in fpirituals Now the Lord do:h (thus) follow h's fervants in refpect of 
the"fei^° f $&*&% i.Inrefpe&ofthemfelves, 2. Jn refped of their 
B:ciufe, S * Graces, 3 . In refpeft of God. 
Subsequent I . /* refpett of t he mf elves* 

grace is as ne- 1 . Partly becaufe this Subfequent Grace is as neceffary for 

cellar? as Prs- QKr Stability * as his Preventing Grace is for our CwverfnrWt 

Vcr.5. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fh all follow me^ &c* 2S9 

could not be his, but by his Preventing Grace; and we could 
not continue his, but by his Subfequent Grace. The child 
needs a Nurfe as well as a Mother , the Breft as well as the 
Womb. Neither are our hearts (ofthemfelvesj fufficient to 
keep our Graces, nor are our Graces (by their naked ftrenpth) 
able to keep themfelvcs^ for our hearts are a very deceitful 
creature, and our Graces arc a very weak creature. The moft 
eminent Saints have been found to be finful men when left alone 
to their own belt ftrength. 

2. Partly that our glorying might be (I ill in him: Cut off Ojr glorying 
the beams from the Sun and they inftantly ceafe , their whole muit bc ^ ** 
ftrength confifts in their dependance on the Sun. God referves & d ' 
the whole Latitude of Grace in his own hand, and lets out the 
nature and mcafures of it, that we might never glory in our ex- 
cellency, who receive, butinhis gracious bounty and fidelity 
who gives. Grace may be confidered three wayes ; 1. In re- 
fpeft of Inchoation- t 2. In refped of Augmentation j 3. 3n re- 
fped of perfection • and all is due to God. 

3. Partly that our dependance might ft ill be on him \ for ifOardepend- 
God will ftill continue his gracioufnefTe and grace to his peo- «"« muftbe 
p!c, then his people have reafon ftill to depend onh'm, and ftlllonG ^' 
truft on him for their fupplies in fpirituals. That exceeding 
goodnefle in God,that he will be our everlafting God, is ground 
furficient for us to look up with confidence for everlafting 
ftrength andaftlftance. 

2. In refped of their graces. la **Cf< A °t 
1. They are the moft neceffarj things ,thc life of their lives If j h r e ^ r *^ $ " ft 

God will keeprhe feet of his Saints, will he not their Souls, will necciiiry 
;he not then their Graces. Eternal life depends on Gods keeping, things. 
2. They are the moft excellent Gifts, which arc without re- The moft <*• 
pentancc. 3 . Though the beftjet VH*kjn tbemfelves. "|j cnt *J frs * 

3. In refpeU of God. mt ^ C yCZ 
1 . Becaufe the eleilion of God mnft ft and (ure : Divine ele- in refpeft of 

dion , as it is very gracious in refpect of the caufe , fo it is in God. 
fallible inrefped of the*t/m, and the reafons thereof arcTheeltAjonof 
1. Gods prefcience cannot bc miftaken, 2. Gods will cannot S^S? 
be fruftrated, and therefore doth he follow his people with fub- 
fctjucnt grace, that it may never bc laid, he hath cm ft <ff his 
people whom he did foreknow. 

P p 2.BC- 

29° Surely Goodnefs\and Mercy [hail follow me, &c. Ver.6. 

Hchsth firmly 2. Becaufe he hath firmly promifed unto them eternal life 
promifed to and glory ; this the Scripture declares much, and therefore 
lift" C £mS * C * s ^^ ^ms is the kjngdome of heaven, and great is their re- 
nt ird in hsaven , and Chrifi is gone to prepare a place for tkem ; 
and hethac he litvtth hath eterml life, and Titus i 2. Ettmal 
life,x»hich God that cannot lye promifed before the wirld began. 
Bat there could be no aftertion of the thing thus promifed, 
unlefs God did follow his people with fubfequent grace, not 
grace (imply , but grace preserved and kept , delivers us into 
thofe eternal manfions. A motion not begun but continued , 
brings to the journies end,fo, &c. 
He bach cro- 3 • Becaufe he hath alfo promifed perfevera'dce unto his people-, 
mifed per'feve- there is not only exhortments to the Saints to perfeverance , as 
rancetohis Rev.Z>io. Be thou faithful to the death; not only Cautions-, 
people. j a ^ fa e ^ t fj at y e receive not the grace of God in vain , and take 

heed leafl ye fall from your own fiedfaftnefs . Nor only^»cro«- 
ragements,He that continueth to the end /hall be faved)Alx.\ 3.1 3. 
And indue time we /hall reap if we faint not, Gal. 6. 9. But 
alfo exprt/s promifes, that God will put his fear , that we fhall 
never depart from him, fer.$z. And that he will fanctirie us 
throughout , and preferve us unblameahle unto the coming of 
Chrifi, i Thtf$. That he mWfinifb what he hath begun ; which 
promifes are exprefs evidences of what God himfelf doth un- 
dertake, and what he will perform in us, Br go, he will ftill fol- 
low his people with fpiritual mercy and goodnefs. 
fj r e The main ufe of this point ferves for unipe Arable comfort to 

This is un- the people of God, unto whom God hath begun in fpiritual 
fyeakable com- mercy and goodnefs : There is not a condition (on earth) more 
fore to the peo- excellent then that which is fpiritual, nor more aflaulted by 
$c of God. s a taa, nor oppofed by evil men , nor more feared (for the du- 
ration) by good men themfelves then this , and yet the whole 
frame of it ( from the beginning to the end) is wrought and fu- 
fkined and fupplyed by an omnipotent and gracious hand s 
The Lord who hath begun the good work of grace will aflured- 
\y finiih it ; and he having in much mercy fet his love upon you 
will never reverfe it ; he is not as man that he fbould repent : his 
goodnefs and mercy towards you are a Sun, which if they once 
rife , do never fee again. Two things I would briefly com- 
mand to you. 

1% One 


Vcr.6. Snnlf Gocdnefs and Mercy [hall follow me, &c. 

i. 6dC t« to mdfte h evident HnUjtur fouls , that Cj.dkathU\th^ 
begun with you in fpiri'ual favours and mercies y that you are'^J ^ j^JJ 1 
the people of his love and grace b which may appear unto tfi ' un wi >hyjd 

you. in ipirkual ta- 

I . By the alteration if your Natures, in their inclination and fours. 
eW : True grace makes us new perfons , 2 £>. 5. ^7- By ^K tlt<r ^ 
JEjro ftcn fum Bgo t iaid he in S. Ambrofe. 


2. By your . tft imation of gods favour and of his graces, asa/yourcfthna- 
1. InCod, 2. Towards themfelves, 3. In all perlons-, whattionof GjJs 
is thy Summum and Optimum. favours. 

3. By \he dominion which grace hath and God hath, that Bythe domini. 
they rule in the heart, and the heart is in fervice only to them , on which ^racc 
they have choien the Lord, &c. ht "« 

4. By humble de fires and endeavours after mere growth, not B/ h um t[ c j c . 
as if Wc hadalreadj attained, Phil 3. (ires and endca- 

5. By that tender regard of Gods Will to obey it , and of his vours af:er 
honournottoflurit, Pfal.i 19 7,10,12,13,17. ^"wndc'r'rc- 

6. By r^f real hatred of, and confitcling with fmful tufts, and y r *^ q^" 
thereupon declining all appearances and inductions to evil, hav- m \\i . 

**£ »o fe/lowfijip with the unfruitful workj of darkjnefs. I hate By a real hatred 
every evil Way. Pfal.i 19. ot Iin - 

7. By fuferlative joj in the pre fence of Gods favour , d own- By Wr*™*** 
ing all carnal and worldly delights as the Sun doth thc^^G^s" 

ftars. favour. 

8. By that tfficacie and ftrength of more hve unto God , upon By the efficacy 
the evidence of his love. ' ° f mori 

2. Then comfortably to be confident that God wMftMfillw™™tetvi- 
you in this gocdnefs and mercy : He will keep and prefcrve your 0f[iCC f m, 
perfons, and he will keep and preferve your graces, he will not love. 
foil tofupply you even unto the end. I cannot exprefs the great- E* confident 
nefs of this mercy , our eternal happinefs lyes in it, it is of the' h ^ **** *!" 
moil lingular concernment to the foul for blefTednefs, to be in t hi$°™ 
favour with God , to have the Lord Hill following of us, and and mercy, 
yet this the Lord will certainly perform to his people , he hath 
changed your hearts, he will keep your graces, he will fave your 
fouls, and what would ye more f 

Ob'jtZl. But now it is obje&ed , how (hall we hoi 
who »e fo weak-, if we have any grace it is but of little hold out thtt 
ftrength. kmtoltota 

Pp2 Sol. Be- ft ' cn ^ 

rgri Surely Gfiodaefs tni mercy jhall follow me, &c* Ver. $• 

Afl£vy?red« . Sol. BecaulVtis of Utile flrength , therefore will, the Lord ^ 
follow it with morefirength. 

2. The ferengthoi. thy grace is much more in its can fe then* 
in «/*//. Weak gracehas ftrong helps , the Child hath a mo- 
ther, and the Ivy. an Oak If an invincible ftrengch doth keep 
and lead on a weak g^ace, there is fafety enough- my 
grace i> [xifcism: for thee y faid Goi to Paul v 2 Cor. i. and my 
ps&sr is made m mifeft in weak **A (chy foal (hall b? as a wa- 
tered garden , the flip* gro v by it ) chy duration depends not 
OR thy ftrength, but onthy Gods itrengcjv 

A* but I fin fo Oh***' Yea ' buC ] am tead y t0 fin and &° fin r ° mucn » *»t 
ntifacfcicGid the Lord may therefore leave me , becaufel do not folio whim,., 
may leave me. therefore he may ceafe to follow me.. 

tafecrefc. Sol. It cannot be denyed, tint a ptrfon in Godt favour % and 
ki thi (fate of grace hath xfenful nature in him , and thatalfo 
he doth daily fen. 

2. The fins (whatfoever they are) of fuch a perfon, confider 
them in their proper merit with reference to the conn rfjnjlicc , 
they faferve that Cjod fbmld nn love ^ot. follow us t 6cc. and God< 
may be angry as a father. Bu: yet consider them in the court 
ef mercy , and as taken off by a more fufficient merit in the 
blood of Chrift , fo they do not effectually prejudice us.either 
for Gods love or Gods fubfequent grace.. 

*J. There aye divers forts of finning : forne^y ignorance , as> 
Paul before his converfion: fame*/ infirmity, as Peter af- 
ter his- converfion : fome of mdice and full delight , which* 
are reigning fins, aud have in them, i. Qlit* light • z. Com- 
15!?/ 8 ?- fte* *f}e*t> both antecedent, and concomitant, and confequent: 
5^ and 3. Covenant of heart to love and ferve 11 n. Thus the peo- 

ple of God do not fin, and the former ivayesdo not move- 
the Lord to caft them off, but he pities their infirm ties, and 
will pirdon them, and be merciful to their tranfgreffions, and • 
will- raifc up his falling fervan s with renewed forrow and re- 
pentance, and wiil'caufe them to be more watchful, prayerful,- 
Ikong, xtrc. 
15 « Satan may y. Yea *D3t Satan may hinder me of this fubfequent i 
binder me of ^ * • 

j*ac2 U ' Cnt ^ Sol. No, nor Satatt, neither by his 

Aaf/vcred^., T^Accnfation for fens paft^ Ro.3.33. Who fhjll laf* 

Ver.6. S*rdy Goodnefs 4»d Mercy (ball follow mc,&C. 191 

any thing to the chnrffe of Godselecl? it is God tbst jutfifieth: 
Who can hinder Hie Lord from doirg thy foul good ? In v 
doth the malicious adverfary accufe, when the juiige is fatisfied 
and he himfelf hath acquitted and cleered the party accufed. 
1. Temptations unto fins future ; indeed he may fife and win- 
now an holy perfon, he may ttrangely alTault, and Sometimes 
ftrangcly prevail, but never fo erTedu illy, that either their grace 
(hall utterly fail, or that Gods gracioufnefs (hall utterly ceafe • 
either God will deliver them from temptation by with- drawing 
Satan ^ or raife them at length above the temptation by making 
their Graces more refitting and victorious. Temptations re- 
fitted are ditturbances to our Graces but never hinderances to 
our helps. 

Ob. Yea, but the World may take us off from God,and then 
God from us. ThcjPM 

Sol. No neither, for God will fo follow his fervants with his ^ l *^ c J sc 
graciou* favour and ftrengch,that they (hall overcome the world, /vnfwtirJ. 
he will yet give them hearts more crucified unto- it, and raife- 
their hearts to fee the excellencies of his fove inChritt,that 
they dial] trample on all as drofs and dung.incomparifonof 

Thus you fee that the Lord will follow you with his fubfe- 
quent grace, and none (hall hinder it from following of you e- 
ven unto the end-, therefore lift up the feeble hands and knee-, 
fiiifernot difcouragements or diffidences to dwell upon your 
fouls, as if the Lord would leave you and forfake you • there 
was never any fervant of God whom he ever finally left. 

Th'.s do 1. Few jour oWtrreaknefs. 2, tsfvoiAeccjfions of 
weakning your firength. 3. Keep clofe to God in all upright* 
nefs and humblenefs of walking. 4 tsf-.tend to tre publicly 
me.ms of your future ftrength and perfeverance. 5. Be fer- 
vent in Supplication to. the Lord for this his ftrength and fup- 
plies of your gi.acous condition. 6. And commit your fouls 
<;n {grate* for their preservation and progrefTe into • he bd*ds of 
CWagainftall Satans fuggettions and your own diftrultrul fpi« 
rits. (Never thnk that the Lord will begin and not make ail 
end , that he will leive fo excellent a thing as Grace. 
ffrft, It wzr* dhhwourable tokimfm 1 his Promtfes, 2. £*>*, 
■ Lrjcto his people. Secondly, Jt were uncomfortable to hx 


294 Surely Goodnefs And Mircy (hall follow me 7 &c> Ver.6. 

~~pfople , they could never be fare of his favour, or grace, or hea- 
ven, if he would not follow thefc ) : So (hail you honor the 
Lord in the glory of his great goodnefs and mercy unto you • 
fo fhall you honour him in the glory of his everlaftingcare for 
your everlafting good ^ fo fhall you find his everlafting arms 
ltretched out and underneath you to preferve you for ever to his 
everlalting Kingdom and glory. 
- A third ufe fhall be to make ufe of God in this his goodnefs 

j, y J'i and mercy : follow him that his goodnefs and mercy in fpirituals 
that h" good- majfotto^us. 
nefs mayfollow Ob. How may we do that? 

you. Sol. I. Follow him out of a fenfe of y.ur need of more grace 

Follow G?d aYl £ favour : you find your corruptions grow ftrong and rebel- 
out of afcnfe Hous, that a little grace will not ferve to keep you, but you are 
crorc Gra". ° rea dy t0 ^U n° w follow the Lord that he would not leave thee 
but would gracioufly and erTe&ually follow thee with more 
grace, more power, &c* 
Oatof an c- 2. Out of an ffiimation of his further helping and fubfe- 
ftimation of mnl Q race . y 0U w ||i never follow throughly unlcfs you prize 
feqacm Grace* hi g hl Y i ° Lord th J lovi H K^dnefs is better then lifa&c. 
Wi f h earncft 3 • With earneft and unfatisfiable afftllions : make it more to 
and unfatisfi- you then heaven : Be not faid nay : / will not let thee go ttnltfs 
able s&dions. thou b/efs me. 

With believing 4- fVith beliiving expoftulations : Urge the Lord through 
cxpoftukions. Chrift with his own word, manifold promifes; and why? O 
Lord, wilt thou not remember thy everlafting truth ? have re- 
gard to my foul and to thy name It is an honour and no lofs , 
to be at heaven gates. 
With patient 5. With patient expectations in the ufe o\ c the meant \ You 

expectations fliail know the L?rd if ye Vvill folhw on to know the Lord : 
in the ufe of £ or ^ e w jjj commanc j his loving kindnefs, and will ftrengthen 
thee with fVength in thy foul. Hewill never leave theenor 
forfake thee. 
~DoVt. 2. I now P^ceed to the fecond Expofition of the Text, which 
Temporafciier-underftand it of temporal mercy and goodnefs, and hence this 
cy and good- Propofition doth arife. 
jufs fhall fol- j[ iat tem * ora l we'ej and goodnefs fhall follow the people of 

P^ali tkir Pt °" C7 ^^ // thei *J fS °f their Rf * David is confident of it here in 
iayes. ' the Text, and therefore as he blefleth God for what was paft, 


Ver,6. Surely Goodnefi and Mercy full follow mc^fke. ^95 

folic refteth on God for the future, no way doubting of the 
continuation , who had enjoyed (<> conllant an experience of 
ancient mercies and goodnefs. The Apoftic is appofue to 
this in Htb.l 3.5. He hath f/iid 1 will never leave thee nor for* 
(al^e tkre. V.6. So that ws may boldly (ay ft he Lnd is my hei- 
fer. Whit is that / will never leave thee, &c. but as much as 
I wiilever blefs thee, be with thee, do thee good, (hew thee 
mercy, &c. SolaithGodto his Church in //.f.46.4. Even t§ 
your old age^ I am he % and ev n to hoary hairs will I curry ycr t 
I have made and I will bear^evtn I Vcillcarry an. i dt liver you. 
S0Jer.32.40. 1 will make an ever I aft ing Covenant vei'h them 
that I will not turn away from them to dj them good. But frr 
the Explication of the Aflertion , you muA dill in qui fir ., 
'cwixc Difttoflrifh 

1. Reality and Tlenty: 'cwixt Prefence and Abundance : t - tnd'pitnty. 
God doth not bind himf.lf to the quantity,**) a plenty or abun- 
dance of mercies and goodnefs , that his fervants fhall be all 
their dayes rich and great, but onely to the reality of fuppiy : 
and therefore David doth not fay my full cup, or my*a7, or 
my Urge Tahle fhall follow me, no but onely mercy a:d gond- 
n-fs. Though he might be taken (horter in the quantity, yet 
he was confident (till for the quality ; he might not have plen- 
ty yet he (hould have mercy all his dayes. 

2. And as you muft diitinquifh 'cwixt reality and redundan- An f br " 

r a. J'i\- rL > • .. a j •/■ conltancy and 

cy, fo you muft diltinguiih twixt conftancj and equability. M^Nyi 
The river may run by the door and ferve the houfe, when yet . 
it is fometimes more high, and fometimes more (hallow Chan- 
ges may befall a man in his eftare, and yet mercy and goodnefs 
not change to the perfon under thofe changes. 

3. 'Twixt Identity and perpetuity. Though many a parti- jjfcw'x- IJ«- 
cular mercy may be called home (as an AmbaiTador when he city and p.rpi- 
hath done his work ) yet if another comes in the room of it : wlty. 

if there be a fucceftionof mercies that the need is ftill made up, 
as in a fhip,if the eld board be taken out, a new one is inferted • 
fo when mercy fucceeds mercy, as one hour in the day fucceeds 
another. Though it be not the very fame mercy, yet if it bz 
afucceflion, it doth verihe the allcrtion, That Cjcdwill ftill 
fellow hU pfeple with Goodies and mercy. B;rmY 

4. 'Twixt pur imjUk&j and gods fidelity ; if you ronfik^^^ 

the " " 9! " 

2P6 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fhall fol lew me , &c. Ver.S 

Agumencs to 
evince this 

The niture 
and qualities 
of G jds love 
to his people. 

Sir properties 
of this Love. 
Ic's a Special 

A Great In- 
centive Love. 

the truth of this Affertion at the Barre of an unbelieving judg- 
ment, which in every difficulty and new occurrence confults 
with flefh and blood ; with fancie and fenfc, that cannot fee a- 
farre off- thus, we often judge that we (hall perifh (with Da- 
*vid) and cry out with the murmuring Ifraelites that bread and 
water, and every thing fails us, though at the fame time we are 
eating and drinking. 

But if you will judge of the Affertion either in the intention 
of Gods will, or in the exfrejjton of gods prcmife 9 then it is evi- 
dent,that he who hath been our God, will be our God •, and he 
who hath (hewed us great mercy and goodnefs, his mercy en- 
dures for ever, and hisgoodnefs (hall never fail us. 

Arguments or Reaions to evince and demonftrate the truth 
of the Affertion, are tbefe : 

I . Confider the nature and qualities of Gods love unto his 
people, and then it is evident that his mercy and goodnefs fhall 
frill follow his fervants. That God doth love his people , no 
Chriftian ( who believes the Scriptures ) can queftion : Now 
this love hath divers properties or qualities in it. 

Firft, It is a Special Love ; He loves the worft of men as his 
creatures, and the beftof men as his new creatures; he loves his 
enemies in curftt nature, but he loves his people rnstu gratia, 
with a gracious love. If then his common love, as refpe&ing 
the very worft of men, nay his deadly enemies, be productive 
of much good, that it makes the Sun to ihine on them, and the 
rain to diftill on them, fhall not his fpciai love, his love of 
gracious favour produce rather much more mercy and 
goodneffe to his own people, his favourites, the family 
of love. 

Secondly , It is a Great or Intenjive Ztw-aLove which 
doth not confine, or circumfcribe itfelf with ordinary dona- 
tives, but rifeth to effects of higheft confequence. even to riches 
of Grace, and treafures of Glory. It did vent it felf to the 
free giving of Chriftfthe unparalellable and incomparable mer- 
cy) , If then his love will rife (and that for ever) to the high- 
eft demonftrations, will it ( think you) fail in the lo weft expref- 
fions > If it will not ftick to give Grace (which in the loweft 
degree of it is more valuable then a whole World) nor fail to 
giveChriftj who is (in a forrj as far above Grace, never ima- 

Ver.6. Surclj Goodrtefs and Mercy flail follow me, &c.. 297 

gine that he will b: as a deceitful river or failing ftaff in the 
poor things of this life, in thefe minima bona as St. Auftin calls 
them, Rom.%. 3 2. He that [pared not hu oVen Son but delivered 
him up for us all, hcWfijall he not Kith him alfofreelj give us all 

3 . It is an ailing and commun : cating Love : There is a love An a&inj and 
which is only in pretence, and it is like the barren womb, p e r-^ m £ un e lCMC * 
haps complementally verbal, but not at all effectually fruitful : in ' 

And there is a love which is rich in affettujn defires, but reftrai- 
ned in tfftttu, in fupplies ; the heart is bountiful, but the hard 
is not able. And there is a love which hath depth of will and 
ftrengch of power, it is like the Sun ftill imparting light, or 
like the Fountain ftill dropping-, fuch a love is God unto his 
people, not naked, not needy, but full and fruitful, a running 
Fountain, ever dropping, a conitant Sun, everftiining; there 
is not the day, nor the hour, nor the minute which hath not a 
meflage of mercy in it from that love. 

4. his 3. chearful Love • a love that is not only apt to do A Chcarfol 
good, but alfo which delights to do good. As his merciful- Lovc « 
nefl'e is a nature which delights in mercy, fo his goodneiTe is a 

Eature which delights to do good to his people, ? t r 3241. / 
-will rejoice over them to do thtm good, ana I will plant them in 
this land ajfuredly with my whole heart and with mj whole foul. 
Now an affection to do good, and an affectionatencfTe in the 
doing thereof, makes the work an unweariable and perpetual 
work. Bounty will hold out if it be grounded in a i.Rich, 2-a 
Sincere, 3. a Delightful affection. 

5. It is a very tender love ; a (lighter love is like the chaff A very rcnie* 
which every wind can move and turn, but a tender love islike Lovc * 

the roots of an Oake which cleave faft to the earth - the more 
tender the love, the more tenacious it is. Two things arc ob- 
ferved where love is tender, one that it is more pitifnl, another 
is, that it i« more he Ipful ^ and the reafon of both is, becaufe 
the more tender love is, the more natural it is, which of all loves 
ismoft fenfible and yielding ; as you fee in parents to their chil- 
dren, who fometimes will almoit (tarte their children to pre- 
ferve life in theirs. Now the Lord doth love his people with a 
moft tender love, more tender then that which in us is natural 
love, exceeding the love of a father to his child, Tfclj.7. io» 

Q^q and 

298 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fball foUwhme^&c. Vcr.6 

and that of a mother to her fucking child and fon, ffa.49.15, 

We do think it amonftrous unnaturalnefsfor a woman to for fake 

her fucking child, the tears and cries whereof do fo melt the 

heart to open the brefts. Why then ! if Gods love be more 


An invariable 6. Laftly, It is an Invariable Love ; not a flafti or pafiionats 

fioics love, which flames a while and cools as faft, but a (table and 

permanent love, which began before any time, and which (hall 

laft beyond all time. It isa love of Eternity, in which there 

is no beginning nor ending, and therefore it will never fail 


Confider the 2 . Secondly, The nature and circjim fiances of Gods Cove~ 

nature and cir- nant an d then likewife it will appear that Gods goodnefs and 

GTds Cove°. mrc Y wil1 fti11 ^llovrus. 

nant . There are four things confiderable in Gods Covenant, 

Ink. 1. One is the Vniver/alityofGoed. It is the very Summa 

Confider the Totalis of all the good which we need either for Soul or body, 

Univerfality of e | tner for this j; fc Qr the jjfe t0 CQmc# Thc trea f ures f a i| our 

09 ' mercies are cabined as it were in it. 

The Perpetuity 2 . Another is f the Perpetuity of Time. As it is for all good. 

of Time. f - {t ] s f or a jj t j mcs . an( j therefore as it is called a gracious Co- 
venant for the frcenefs of it, and an abfolute Covenant for the 
fulnefsof it ^ So it is called an cverlafting Covenant, for the 
duration of it. 

The Validity 3- A third \s Validity of Engagement. God doth not onely 

of Engagement affirm but folemnly bind and engage himfelf in the higheft obli- 
gations of his honour and with the utmoft of his will and 
power , to perform at all feafonable times , all that neceflary 
and convenient good for his people. 

Fidelity of 4. And ! the laft is Fidelity of performance. That the Lord 

Berformance. will not fail nor fhall any word of his Covenant fail ^ Heaven 
and earth (hall rather be crufbt and crackt into nothing, before 
any one iota or tittle of Gods promifes (hall be nullified or 
falfified. See ^*r. 3-1. 35.ver.37. Doth it nt then hence un- 
deniably appear that goodnefs and mercy (hall alwaies follow 
the people of God , when as God himfelf who is the fountain. 

, _ of all mercy and goodnefs , who onely hath the foveraign au- 

thority and ability over them, hath fo freely not onely affirmed 
but engaged his will ,and power to perform, not onely fome 


Vcr.tf. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy Jhall follow me^ &c. 299 

good but every good, not for a while, but at all times unto Ins 

3. Thirdly', Confidcr the nature and quality of hU 7>r<wi'- Conddrr lhc 
der.ee ,and then alfo it will appear that Goodnefs,&c. " ,tur J * * u *' 

ii- j • n c 11.1 1 j i'ty or bii p f o- 

1 . His providence is a vaft care for all the world. *L J cncc. 

2. It is a moft Watchful care over his own people, both l : isareftcM 
against evils which might annoy them and /or ^cod which may for all chc 
lupply them. As his eyes run through the whold World , fo^ rlc, ft 

they 4^^ /?r<w£ in the behalf of his people ; not onely ftrong to f u ™„ c ™„ 
defend them, but asftrongto fupply them, and therefore youhi sown p cop [ c . 
read in Zach. 4 2. that the golden Candlefiic ^had not onely 
feven Lamps ( to imply Gods exad Omnifcience ) but alfo 
/even pipes (to imply Gods exaft Providence ) and tWo Olive 
trees , one on the right fide of the Bowl and the other on the 
left fide thereof, v. 3 . to import his continual feeding and fup- 
portingof his Church. 

3. As it is an active care, fo is it an rjfctlive care -, it is a care An ffftfti^ 
of influence as well as of guidance ^ not onely to order but Csrc 

alfo to blefs. Not onely to know what we want, Afatth.6. 3 2. 
but alfo to add unto us all the things that we need, v. 3 3. 

4. And it is likewife 4 daily care . Not a care for a day one- A daily Care 
ly but an every daies care : asthedaiesfucceed thedaies , fo 

Gods care doth follow his people from one day to another,and 
therefore is it he bids you every day to come unto him for daily 

4. Fourthly , Confider yet again , the relation betnixt God Confidcr the 
dnd his people , fo may it apr ear that goodnefs and mercy (hall Rc . iacl °"J b ^. 
follow them all the daies of their life. There are two forts of j^ 1 *^ 
relations; fome which infer only a temporary obligation, as that 
of Matters to their Servants, who are onely bound to provide, f^.*^ 1 "* "* 
cloath, (ccd, lodge their fcrvants, during the term of Cove- tcrr ,p °,i ©bU- 
nant whether for weeks or year or years , upon the expiration ption. 
of which there is a Ceflation of any further care and Tye. 
Which include a Perpetual Obligation as that of an husband to O hrrs include 
a wife, or of a Parent to a child, the relations here are conftanc MJ"£? 
and the obligations thereupon ceafe not • Such a relation as this, x i mon - 
is there betwixt God and his people , even that of an husband 
to a wife which is a Covenant tor life it felf, and that of a 
Parent to a child, who is not onely bound for the marter to 

Q(| 2 provide 

. , I I ' '.... I. I ■ ■■■ ■ , I ■■ I ■— ■ m 

300 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fbad follow me, &c. Ver.6 

""provide but for the duration to provide as long as he is a Parent", 
either immediately at his own houfe or equivalently in a dowry 
refpeding life in a marriage. That God who enjoins a con- 
fiancy of provifion from us to ours ( or elfe accufeth us to be 
worfe then infidels ) will not he ( ftanding in a more neer rela- 
tion to us) extend and continue his care and goodnefs? 
There is a S- Laftly , There is a continued nectffuyonhis peoples part 

continued ne- for the continuation of his fatherly goodnefs andmircy •, Their 
ccfTuy of Gods life is altogether on him. Their life of nature is but a breath 
peoples pare for ^ e p C nding on bis power. Their life of condition is but a beam 
tioVo" Gods" Spending on his fun. Their life of Faith is but an band Mi 
goodnefs. opening or gathering at his tree ; every day feeding on his pro- 
mifes and blefllngs. There could be no continued living with- 
out his continued mercy and goodnefs ; Ergo. 
Vfe* Thus you have the explication of the AfTertion, I now pro- 
ceed to the application of it to our felves : 
It imformes us 1. It may inform us of the precedency as alfo of the (lability 
*a tbt fr £ C v °f **>* condition of godly perfons.- *Tis true that all thefe out- 
teyof the con- ward tnin g s arc mutable in their nature , as very flitting fhade, 
dition of Gods and that fome evil men may in number of outward things ex- 
people, ceed the poffeilions of the righteous • but there are two things 
of which the righteous perfons may be confident , one is fuffi- 
ciency , another is perpetuity • They have a good hold and 
jjiall hold it for term of life. Whereas the wicked in their 
abundance (hall be driven to their feet , and their wealth (hall 
melt as the fat of lambs and greafe ; there is a perpetual flip- 
perinefsand inconftancy in their conditions , yet the righteous 
(hall dwell in the land for ever , goodnefs and mercy fhall fol- 
low him all the daies of his life • 4nd therefore if ever you 
would get a good and a firm pofleflion , get good hearts • the 
beft hearts get the onely advancements in Heaven, and the beft 
eftates on earth. We all account an inviolably certainty to be 
far better then a controlable plenty. 
Vfe 2. But fecondly , It may inform us of the utter inexcuf ability 
It iaformes of % n the people of God , for their pafftonate unbelief , fearful trem- 
tht *" cx ™k". blings and predominant fufpicions and conclusions often- 
pe^ple?or?hck tlmc5 tiiat they (hall certainly want , and that goodnefs and 
ykflionats an- mercy will fail them, and not fallow them all the dayes of their 
b«Ucf, lift. I fhall onedty perifi, faid David ; what fhall we put on, 

Vcr.6 Surely Goodrtcfs and Mercy frail follow mc^fkc. 301 

Vfhat (hall w<? eat and drir\> fay the Diftipfes, We are not 
unlike thefe, nay I pray God we be not worfe then thefe j likfl 
to the murmuring I(ratUtes,who fpakj again i u J % fajing, 
Can God f firm flj a Table in the fvilderntft > behold he (mote the 
rock, that the \X>at'rs gujbedout, and the ftreams overflowed, ean 
he give bread alfo} can he provide fl-.fh for hit people ? Pfal. 
78.19,20. So we, the Lord will not anfwerus,w.li not do us 
good, he is weary of us, oureftates fhrink, mercies grow low 
and thinne, we begin to want, we (hall want, we have called 
and yet there is no anfwer . endeavoured, and yet there is no 
mercy j furely the Lord will leave us.&c. 

Now thou unbelieving heart who charged God thus foolifh- 
Jy, haft thou not known > haft thou not heard that the everlafting 
Cjcd, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth net, 
neither is weary > 

What is the Lord in himfelf ? is there any change in him, in c on (j.j cr whlc 
whom there is not fo much as the fbadov* of change ? afluredly ± t L on i i$ i n * 
h« is as good a God as ever {his goodnefs remains forever) as himfelf. 
merciful a God as ever (hi* mercy endures forever) as faithful 
a God as ever (his faith f nine fs abides to all generations) as com- 
panionate a father to pity thee, as wife a God to conllder thee, 
as All-fufficient a God to help thee, as willing a God to blcfs 
thee as ever. If the fountain remain the fame, wbyfhouldft 
thou premeditate want of water ? If the Sun continue the fame, 
why fhouldft thou fear a decay of light ? if the God of all 
Grace, and the Father of all mercies remain the fame, why 
(houldiUhou fufped ? whyihouldft thou fear? why fhouldft 
thou challenge the duration, the continuation, the courfe of 
his goodneffe and mercy towards thee all the dayes of thy 

Or look on the Wor& of God : What one fyllable or hint 
baft thou there that God will fail thee ? the onely way to judge «y°° j 0n f : ^ 
what God will do, is ferioufly to look upon what God hath flr c 
fad. Doeft thou difcern in the leaft degree that he hath called 
in the Charter, or altered the Deeds and Grants, couched in his 
fracious promifes ? furely they are fprings of goodnefs, and 
fealsof truth for ever ^ they are not clouds that vanifh, biK 
wells which run ; not a womb which growes barren, nor brclls 
which grow dry, but as the Sun and the Ordinances in heaven 


-30 2 Surely Coodnefs And Mercy fh all follow me^ &c. Vcr.6 

that are fetled for ever, all of them arc Yea, and Amen. 
Or look on the dealings of god with yen ; What hath he 
Look on the b een unto you ? or what hath he done unto you ? hath he been 
God iSh you as ^ e ^ an( * ^ arren wildernefs that no mercy ever found you 
'out? or when was he as the deceitful Brook? name the time 
that he ever failed you, or left you deftitute of his goodnefsand 
mercy.Thou muft needs fay of his goodnefs, what Samuel faid 
of his help, hitherto hath God helped w. So hitherto hath God 
blefled me,neveryetdidhefaif me,buthathfed me, but hath 
clothed me, but hath lodged me, but hath provided for me. 
What, and yet in much experience to give way to much difTv- 
dence , to feel goodnefs and yet to queftion it ; to confe/Te a 
continuation of mercies, and yet to fufped a continuance of 
Ob. But it is here replied, we are not fo diftruftful of Gods 
r* d <rft C »f ? 0t S oocm efs f° r tne future.True/ometimes feme tranficnt thoughts 
of Gads tood- ar ^ e ' iea ^ a ^ Wl ^ n0t h° ,( * out witn us > but f° r an Y over-ruling 
nefs for the fu* diffidence that God will not follow us with Goodnefs and Mer- 
tare. cy, we diflike it, we are not guilty of it. 

Sol, i J anfwer, that even the mofi believing heart may fome- 
Anfw:rcd. times feel feme throwes and paffions of unbelief : , which it doth 
diflike, refill, and bewail. Though Temporals be far lefie then 
Spirituals, yet our hearts are as apt ( upon occafions and in 
ftreights } to be fhaken about them , as well as about the 

2. That even thofe pafficns and fits of d'tftruft are unlawful 
and firrful : Though I dare not pronounce of rhem they are a 
grand iniquity, yet we may every one ( with Afapk) confefs 
and bewail, This toas my infirmity, they arc the fmoke in the 
candle, the lamenefs in our thighs, the palfie in our hands, the 
flafhes and births of unbelief. 

3. But let us though take heed, left while we would flatter 
and relieve our felves with an opinion of infirmity, we be not in 
the mean timcguilty °f ***£**»£ infidelity in this particular, that 
the very dominion of unbelief is upon us in a prevalent and ha- 

Rel . |nfi . bitual diftruft of Gods goodnefs and mercy for the future.- 

dciity in this Ob. Howmay that be known? will you fay. 

may be luiown, Sol. I conjecture thus : 

By exceffive x t Exceffive de)ettedne[s doth demonftratc an exceffi ve 

rfcjcScdncfs. W J di. 

Vcr.<5 # Surely Goodnefs and Mercy flail follow me >&c 303 

diftruftfulnefs : When theheartof manislikea ftonc, ftill hea- 
vy ; or like the fea, ftill tumultuous ^ or like the mill ftill 
ground with cares and fears , and griefs ^ that if he looks in, 
all is a combuftion ; if he looks out,all is but a consumption ^ 
if he looks up, all is but a conclulion ■ troubled within, decay- 
ing without, and hopclefs above (.*'.) he feels his heart ftill un- 
quiet, he judgeth his eftate ftill pining, and his God in a refolu- 
t;on of failing : Affurcdly he doth not believe that goodnefs and 
mercy will follow him all the dayes of kk life. Faith for the 
future, doth proportionably revive us for the prefent, David 
dd believe and therefore did not faint, Pfal.27.13. So much 
faith, and alwayes {q much cheerfulnefs. It cannot be but a 
life of faith fhould (hew it felf in alivelinefsof heart, for faith 
will diQodge our cares, and anfwer our fears, and (hew our 
helps and fo eafe our hearts But thus it is not with every man, 
look on the countenance? of men, feel thepulfesof men ; O 
they look like death, their hearts are funk. their bopes are gone, 
they run to folitary places, fit down and weep,and vex, and me- 
ditate on nothing but mifery and poverty, think on nothing 
but want, fear nothing more then want, talk of nothing but 
want, even opprefs and confume away , and make an ead of 
their lives, for fear leaft goodnefs and mercy fhould not follow 
them all the dayes of their life. w 

Secondly, Wayes of unlawfulnefs do alfo evidence hearts full ij^fuincfs. ' 
of diftruftfulnefs • a good God is never trufted but in a good 
way. If we will borrow the help of fin, we palpably diftruft 
the goodnefs of God. For did we believe that God would 
not fail us,we would never aflay whether any wicked way would 
help us He that believes makes not h^jie. S*ul did not be- 
lieve and therefore he goes to the Witch ; and the l(raelites % 
and therefore they refted on the King of t^ffyria and 

O Lord be merciful unto us : How frequent is this to feek to 
ftrengchen our felves and to fettle our ethtcs by W3yes of fin ? 
One man will provide for hereafter, by ufury, another by op- 
rxeiTion, another by lying, another by fraud and cozening, 
another by flattery, another by apoftafie. They do not be- 
lieve that Gods goodnefs is fufficient enough, or that it is con- 
ftant enough. Did they believe that there was a God, and 


304 Surely Goodnefs a/?d Mercy flail follow me, &c. Ver.6. 

that the earth is the Lords and that he keepeth mercy for ever 
for them that fear him, and that the man who trufts upon the 
Lord fhall be blefled, that he (hall be as the tree planted by the 
waters, that his roots fhall fpre^d and his leaf fhall be green 
or that God would never forfake him, how could it be that his 
heart fhould thus forfake the Lord, and lean tothewayesof 
fin and curfe. Faith keep* the eye upon Gods truth^andthe 
foot onely in Gods way "• it knowes that Divine goodnefs is as 
able to perform, as Divine gracioufnefs is willing to promife 
and that thofe wayes which are contrary to Gods lawes are ne- 
ver certain for our comforts; but that as all mercy fprings 
from God, fo it fhall be disburfed and found in paths onely of 
When Divine Thirdly, When Divine engagements prove unto us no encctt- 
engagemems ragements, it is an argument we do not truft God for the future : 

encourate- 110 There are four chin S s which ctlc P romifes °f God (thofe I mean 
ments. by Divine engagements) breathe upon a trufting foul. 

The promifes 1 . Support : They are as a Cordial to keep a man from faint- 
breatbe upon a [ n g^ f J) av {d faith Pfai.27. 13. I had fainted unlefs I had be- 
tufting foul lieve j t0 r ee fhe „ 00( } ne f s 6 f t he Lord in the land of the liv- 
Support. ' J 6 J J 

€ . 2. Compofttre: LikeChrifls voice, they rebuke the winds 

,ompo ure. ^ ^ ^ we ^ ^^^ more q Q( j Sj an j morc our f e j ves ^ t ^ en 

when we can believe the promifes. Now our fears abate, and 
cares vanifh as the clouds when the Sun breaks out j the heart 
hath leaft tumult, when it hath moft faith; no flefh fo patient 
as the found, nor heart fo quiet as the believing. 
Alicrhy. 3* Alacrity : For Magars eyes are now opened to fee more 

water then in her own bottle, a fpring of water to preferveher 
own life and her childs. The promifes of life, if we do believe 
them,doalwayes excite hearts of life ^ living promifes caufe 
lively hearts, J "foillyet truft y *nd I (hzllyetfeehim to be my 
God, and the help of my countenance ,Pfal. 42. Promifes believed 
are like the honey which Jonathan tafted, which did lighten his 
ey es^ and repair his fpirits; the foul gathers ftrength and cou- 
rage by thtm ; God hath undertaken for me, he will not fail 
me. his bond is faithful and I believe performaic , and now 
the heart is up, it Is alive, joyful not onely in poffeiling, but be- 
Keving , it is quickned, inlarged ; as it is joiful in poffeflion, fo 


Ver.<5. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy pall follow me, &c. 305 

ic is cheerful upon the certioration of mercre?. 

4. Expectation : When the husband writes word that at fuch Exptdh:ion« 
a time he will come home, the loving wife will then prepare 
and look for him : I will certainly do chee good, faith God ; this 
is a faithful faying faith the believer, and therefore Iwilllotf^ 
ttp for the Gcdof Jaccb, and rvtll patier.t/y rv ait for his falvn- 
tion. Now fay of what influence are Gods promifes for your 
future good ? I a fTure you there is no credence if there appear 
no influence. I do not ask what thefc promifes are in them- 
felves for their compofition but what are they in you for their 
operation? are they the miniftration of life unto thee? or ra- 
ther are they not as a dead letter unto thee } Do not the con- 
folations and engagements of Gcd feem a (hull thing unto 
thee? If a man, a finful, weak, deceitful creature promifeth to 
feed thee, to fupply thee, &c. thisfetcheth up thy heart-, if a 
God, an Almighty, All fufficienr, faithful God promifeth, I 
will never leave thee nor forfake thee, but my goodnefs and 
mercy fha II follow thee, all the dayes of thy life; yet this af- 
fects us not, revives us not, as if the matter promifed, were not; 
material, or tint he who makes the promifes were not faith- 

Fourthly, AV^Atf of the foul in fpiritu&h y evidently fhews 
that we do not trull on God for futures in temporals : he who £j?^ f •, 
gives all his time to the World, trufts on God at no time • the j° \™ ip ' U 
man will be up in duties, who is up in faith. Faith never yet 
allowed any man to cafhierc heaven,that lb he might get earth, 
(J. ) to renounce a heavenly courfe, that fo he might inlarge a 
worldly eftate ; for it will neither let in fin, nor (hut out God, 
to fettle or infure our felves. Did a man believe that the Lord 
would not fail his body, would he not the more cheerfully look 
to his foul, and ferve that God who is fo faithful ? But behold 
men and their wayes, very drudges to the earth! and fo onely 
p.inful for after times, that they wholly forget eternity, as if 
there were not a God in lfrael ; they truft to their own inut- 
terable toilings, and not to his faithful undertakings : they con- 
cthat times for obedience, arc the times of hinderance 

The next ufe (hall be for inftrutlion, in cafe that we do find y \ ^ 
our felves thus unbelieving of Gods fubfequer.t mercy tndlftftta&ko. 
gocdnefs for our temporals, then 

R r j. To 

3 06 Sitrely Goodnefs and mercy fh all follow me, Sec Ver.6. 

I . To be humbled for this unbelief. 2. To beg earneftlyfor 
the pardon of it, 3 . Togo on no more in it. 
Be hum bled I# To be humbled for cur unbelief in Gods goodnefs and 
to our unbe- mcrC y f or t h c future. There are two great fins which a man 
fhould humble his foul for j One is Vnthankfulnefs for what 
we hath received ^ Another is Vnbelief for what he wants. 
When a man is able neither to Wefs God, nor to truft God ^ 
the good that he hath done, a man regards not , the good that 
he will do, a man believes not- when every experience ftands 
for a cypher, and every promife feems a lie. Oh how fhould 
ths break and abafe our vile fpirits,which are fo averfe to blefs * 
good God, and to rely upon a faithful God. 
ft:g earncft-ly 2. To beg earnestly for the far don of it •, do not think 
for the pardon j t a frna.il thing , for Firfl , It is a fin, and therefore fhould 
of ic » move us in fpecial to confefs it, and to beg remiflionfor it. 

Secondly , It is a great Jin : Unbelief, like oyl, fwims "above 
the water. It is a fin which in every part and kind of it, feems 
to rife above other fins. It didfo provoke the Lord in the If 
thelites, thathe/wMr* in his wrath thy fhould never enter int§ 
his reft* Our reigning diftrufts for earth, may in the end prove 
unto us the lofs of heaven. 
@o no more on Thirdly, Go no more on in this diftrufiing and unbelieving 
in this diftruft- wa y f approve it not, fe^d it not with unworthy arguments, and 
o 5 T' fofpitions, and prejudices, but oppofe it in all,che very heart of 
?po c "• ^ anc [ a j| tnc caufes of it, and occafions of it. Three things I 
will propound for this •, 

1. what caufes and occaftons of this diftruft they are which 
•wemufi oppofe. 2. After what manner we muft oppofe them, 
3 . What motives fo to do; 
' . JZtffft'i • What the caufes of this diftruft on God for future 

caufes of it, Goodnefs and Mercy are which we muft oppofe. 
which wc muft Sol. I con je&ure that the caufes of our a&ual diftrufo in this 
oppofe. kind are thefe , 

The very na- *• A ve f y nature of Vnbelief \ that fpirit of infidelity 

turc of unbe- which is born with us into the world, which tumbles with us in 

Hef. the womb, and cries out (as it were) as foon as we are born, 

and ftill inclines us to depart from the living God, As in o- 

ther things fo in this, we go aftray from the very womb , and 

are more apt co truft inJying vanities, then upon the rock of 


Vet. 6. Sttrely Goodnefs and Mercj fhdllfolhrv me, &c« 307 

our falvation. There is not only a natural rebellion in our pervers 
wills to the righteous lawes of God, but alfo a native unfubje&i- 
on in our minds to the faithful promifes ofGod,wc are as prone 
to incomply with his truth,as we are to inconform with his holi- 
riefle, andtofufpefthisgoodnefle, as we are to difobey his 
commands • our hearts do not onely contradict the will of his 
authority in what he wou/d have us to do, but the will alfo of 
his mercy in that good which he himfelf undertakes to do 
for us. 

2. Extreme ignorance of gcd \ Though knowledge be not 

alwayes fufficient to produce faith, yet ignorance is alone able Ex:rcme J & n °- 
to elicite unbelief. Horvjhali they believe in him ( faid the A- rlnCC 
poftle in an higher Article) of whom the) have not heard-, Ro. 
ic.14. for it is not conceivable how the heart of man fhould be 
raifed to any credence, where there is not fome proportionable 
evidence of thofc motives which onely do elevate it thereto : 
but men are generally ignorant of the nature and excellencies 
and covenant of God. They do not apprehend what an ab- 
folute Being he is in himfelf, and what an All- fufficient Being he 
is to the creatures, how infinite in goodnefs, howfrich in mercy, 
how illimitedinhisgreatnefs, how immenfe ia his power,how 
gracious in his promifes, how plentiful in his companions, how 
invariable in his truth, how active in his providence, how will- 
ing, how able, how faithful to do good to the people of his 
Covenant: and hence it is that they are fo full of their carnal 
difputes,of their tumultuous fears, of their anxious cares, of 
their continual diftrufts. 

3. Jnftabilitj cf judgment : That flipperinefs and incon- i n ft a t>ili ty of 
ftancy which makes our minds to reel and waver, that though judgment. 
fometimes we do difcern the trne and proper grounds of confi- 
dence in God, yet we quickly lofe them, and hold not fa ft to 

our principles, but give way to corrupt rcafonings which cor- 
rupt us from a firm a (Tenting to the truths of God. We do 
not alwayes judge what God alwayes is • though there be a na- 
tural uniformity in Gods goodnefs and mercy, and the fame u- 
niformity in his promifes of that goodnefs and mercy, yet in us 
there is a deformity and diverfity of judgment concerning this. 
Sometimes we judge him able and faithful, and another time, 
wequeftion (as they) can the Lord give bread alfo} One while 

Rr 2 we 

308 ' Surely Goodnefs and Mercy [ball folhrv me&c. Vcr.5 

we are perfwaded of his will, and another while wear- half 
pcrfwaded that he will be favourable no more. Whiles the 
judgment is thus divided, how can it be but our hearts, though 
fometimes like a ftiip they rife up as if they woud touch hea- 
ven, yet by and by they (hould fink down as if they would fall 
into hell * a wavering judgment doth alwayes engender an un- 
believing heart : whiles the mind is fo doubtful, the will cannot 
Prrpofterouf- 4. Prepofteroufneffe of reafoning: There is a perverjenefs of 
ncfsof reafon- reafoning, when a perfon will judge of Gods intentions thus 
* n S: and thus, and fo they muft be becaufe he will judge fo, this is 

either extreme folly, or extreme melancholly ^ and there is a 
prepofleroufnefs of reafoning, when a man will begin his judg- 
ment there where he (hould end it : as thus • There are two 
wayes wherein we judge of Gods intentions, One is *V his pre 
mifes, and thefe are his charter which he makes. Another is, 
incur fenfe , and this is our evidence which we make. In a 
right reafoning from both which we (hould proceed by defcend- 
ing (./.) firft to look at Gods intentions in his promifes, and then 
to follow thofe down unto our fenfe and experience. But gene- 
rally we reafon and conclude of his intentions for our good, 
firft ("if not onely), by fenfe ^ making our fenfe and feeling, 
a leading cafe, as it were, or a rule both to our faith, and ta 
Gods goodnefs ; and becaufe we do not firft with our eyes fee, 
or with our fingers handle and poffefs thefe outward things, 
therefore we conclude that God never intends to beftow them, 
on us. Never confidering that though we may affirmatively 
argue from the promife down to fe^fe, v. g. God hath promi- 
fed unto me a continuation of mercy and goodnefTe, therefore 
Khali fucceffi rely .upon all convenient times partake thereof. 
Yet we may not negatively argue from our fenfe up to Gods 
promife, as thus, I do not now fee much good, and therefore 
God doth not intend to do me any good -P or this is to reafon 
and conclude that there is no Sun in heaven becaufe it is not yet 
day •, or that there will be no fruit this enfuing year, becaufe 
we fee no budds now, whereas the fruit is now in the root,though 
it be not in our eyes and mouths till the proper feafon. And 
yet this is the mod frequent way with us to conclude both for 
our fouls and bodies, namely, to conclude no grace for the one,, 


Ver.6. Surelj Goodnefs and Mercy jh all follow me^&c. 309 

mercy for the other; no heaven for that, no earth for this -, 
becaufe many times our hands are empty, when yet at all times 
Gods hands are full • our good is certain in his promifes, though 
not alwayes evident in our feeling. ]t is juit as if a man fhould 
cry out he (hall die forthirft, when yet the founcain ii full and 
runs, and if he would but turn the coc^even his Ciftern (hould 
have water enough. 

5. A limit at kn of God\ To fpeak properly, God (who i*A limfcadonof 
infinite J cannot be limited, but we limit and itreighcen him , G.d. 
when we limit and (heighten our thoughts concerning him, as 
when weinglorioufly determine his nature or attributes con- 
cerning effects, and means, andt;mes, v. r. 

In refpett of ejfetts : When we confefle a fuffkiency ofGja llmSccJ by 
power to produce fome blcfiings, which (perhaps; we need dSthr /e wtyo. 
not, and therefore do more rightly apprehend his power to ^^P^ot 
caufe them, but other mercies which we greatly need and wfh, c 
and fee much d fficulty and contrariety before we can attain 
them, here now we halt and as Za:hari.u to the Angel \ wbfrt- 
h j (ball I know this} £04*1.18. or as Sarah about a child alfo 
inner old age, (he thought that could not be, Gen.1S.13. This 
i9 a limitation of God, a coarctation of his hand, as if fome 
mercy were ealie for God, yet fome other were too hard fof 
him to efTed, and it is impoiTible to falvc the foul from a dittrufl: 
of Gods goodnefs, whiles it doth limit God in his power or a- 
ny other attribute. If we conceive of God as a particular caufe 
productive onely of fome good, and not as of an univerfal caufe 
able to fend out, and command every good, we (hall be ever 
and anon apt to diftruft him and to perplex our felves. 

In refpetl of means : And thus we limit God when e'ther r n rci '. <• 
we bind him in his providence abfolucely to means, or cunoully n,' lns 
to our means. 'Tis true that the operations of the Divine at- 
tributes doufually appear in mians (and therefore if there be 
any lawful meane* to convey and minuler our helps, we are 
bound toule them) and Hkewife that fometimes we do hit upon 
thofe particular means which God doth ufe as fervants and in- 
(truments of our good. But then in all exigences whatfocver, 
to bind Gods intention and power to means (which can yet 
abundantly work above them^and without them, and contrary 
untothem^ or elfe Co tur particular mea?is, which we make t' 


310 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fh&Ufoll&tf me, &c. Ver.S 

oncly pipes to bring in our fupplies and future mercies ; As 
this is an injury to Gods greatnefs , fo it is a ground to 
ftrengthcn our diftruftfulnefs ^ it is but to meafurc the powers 
of his intention, by the weaknefsof our apprehenfion; and no 
otherwife then as if one would take the Circuit of theHca- 
Efa.M.8,9. vensby a fpan. For the thoughts and abilities, and waies of 
God bold as ample a difproportion to our thoughts and waies, 
as the Heavens do to the earth , which to them is not fo much 
as a fpan-, it is but a point and but an imaginable point too as 
Aftronomers do obferve. Becaufe God doth not appear(in his 
fubfequent mercy and goodnefs ) in one way , therefore he 
will appear in no way- or becaufe he doth not arife in one way, 
therefore he cannot fupplyus in his own way. This is an 
unrcafonable and unjuft illation of an unbelieving judgement, 
for though God be pleafed fo far to honour us with his lore , 
as to make us privy to the aflured intentions of his mercy for 
us, yet he honours his own wifdom fo far as to refcrve the par- 
ticular waies of diftributing our good unto himfelf. He is able 
to continue our mercies by any means, but he will continue 
them by his own and the mercies may be ftili fure & Efficiently 
near, though the waies how to bring them may be very fecrec 
and far off from our thoughts. 
InRtfped of Ittrefyeffcf times; and thus we limit God when we will 
Jimes. not fuffer him to date his own grants, but (which is moft in- 

decent) prefcribe him (the free giver) to our humours and 
haftes of unbelief; as if he wanted wifdom to hit the feafon , 
who yet hath been fo gracious as to promife the mercy. How 
ordinary (though) is this to give up the eftate of Cods 
Churches, and our own private hopes for the particular mer- 
cies which we need , becaufe God comes not at that day whch 
we aflign him. Whereas it was onely our prefumption t! us 
to limit God, who never yet made a promife of any good but 
took the be ft time to perform it ^ Not Gods promife but out 
own prefumption fails us. We unworthily diftruft him as un- 
faithful , becaufe we have unwarrantably made our felves too 
boldly prefumptious to limit him to our time ^ miftaking God 
who is nor to pay but ro pve , and his mercies , which are not 
debts but almts But this limitation of God to our time , is 
the occafion why we do diitruft him fo much for the future , 


Vet. 6. Snrtlf Goodnefs And Mercy /hall follow me^ &c. 3 11 

for we cannot hold up our cruft , if oncewe fufpect him inhis 
truth, we will never believe that he keeps mercy , unlefs with- 
all we believe that he will keep time. 

6. A CMis-conftruElion of gods affiiclions ; Wherein be- A Mit-con- 
caufe God doth take off fome particular mercies ( we are apt & ration of 
to conclude againft his intention for a continuance of mercies : ^ " ,s a l * 
as He^el^iah in h.s great (icknefs haftily concludes, 1 (bill not 
fee the Lord in the land of the livings I fhaH behold man no more 
With the Inhabitants of the world , Ef.38. I r. and fo Afaph , 
becaofe of prefent troubles , queftions future mercies : hath 
he in an^er {but up his tender mercies ? Pfal JJ. Q. And thus 
do we rind in our felves, that prefent afflictions are made 
grounds unto us of future diftrutts. No I the Lord loves us not, 
he is fore difpleafed with us , how can we expect more mercy 
when the Lord recalls his mercies . can we believe that he will 
continue in goodnefs, who thus doth cut off his kindnefs? It is 
hard ( I confefs ) to believe Cod when we feel evil , yet affli- 
ctions are fo far from abridging Gods courfe of mercies that 
even all this while they themfelves do prove lingular mercies 
to us. 

Jgue/l. 2. The next Queftion is, How we m'tfl oppofe tbisHo* wemuft 
our dtftruftfulnefs in the nature and occafions of it. ttruftt.lSeff" 

Sol. I will not infift much on this , onely a few directions 
will I commend unto you for common helpes unto us all : 

1 . Oppofe it with Tears • thus did the father of the child in Oppsfc ic nuh 
thcGofpel oppofe his particular unbelief : he cried out with Tc * r$ - 
tears. A mourning heart is fometimes a way to get more 
ftrength againft an unbelieving heart. No heart is fo under the 
bondage of iin in general, or under the dominion of unbelief 
in particular, as the unfenfible heart ^ when a man either feels 
not hislinfuldiitruftfulneis, or if he doth yet he bewails it not. 
Slighted fins ever prove the moft infohnt and imperious fins. 
But as Cbrift did grieve at the hardnefs of heart in the Jewes, 
fo (hould we mourn for, and bewail die great incredulity of 
our own hearts , frequently confetti ng and compelling our 
hearts to break out into tears , becaulc they cannot break out 
into Faith • that we (hould be fo vile as to mike even our 
God a lyar,and our Father to be unnatural,and thoug'i we can- 
not fiy but that he is the fountain of all mercy & very faichrul- 

nefs • 

3 1 2 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fh all. fftlcrv me^ &c. Vcr.6 

nefs it felf , yet by our unworthy diftruftings we interpret hinr 
to be but as a dry wildernefs , and his Word of truth to be buc 
a fpeech of deceit or falfhood. Oppofetby diftruftfulnefsin 
this mournful way , and know that God who gives an heart to 
bewail, will in time give ftrength to conquer: We ieldom 
fall down in tears but thereupon rife up more in Faith. 
With a grea- 2. Oppofe it with a greater ftudioufnefs of god ; They that 
ter ftudioufnefs fa^ t hy Name will put their truft in thee.. Pfal.Q io. more 
of God. light would beget more heat. We fee it in experience that 

when we fully and throughly know a perfon both for ability 
and honefty , it doth induce us with the more eafinefs to truft 
and credit his undertakings for us. I know the man (fay we) 
he i« able & honeft, he will not deceive me norfailmeand lam 
fure enough. 1 befeech you ftudy God more^ the foundations 
and finews of your Faith are in him ; be not Grangers in com- 
munion with him, No, nor yet be ftrangers in the apprehenfion 
of him. You would not eafily d;ftruit htsgoodnefs , if you 
knew his fulnefs and faithfulness • the Arguments of your di- 
ftrufts dare not fhew themfelvcs before his attributes, they can- 
riot ftand , they would be found to be no weight , a very vani- 
ty , moft irrational fancies. If you knew the Lord in the ex- 
ceeding greatnefs of his power, conftant kindnefs of his Will, 
freenefs of his goodnefs, abfolute dominion overall , tender 
care over his , and unchangeable truth , your grounds of di- 
ftrufts would be afhamed, you would hifs at them, you would 
not hearken to them, did you thus know the Lord. 
With ail parts 3 . Orpofe it with all parts of Refinance, v. g. 
of Refiftance. I# jf | c were poffible, do not favour the thoughts of ' di flrufi s] 
^ ncc lll^lfo much as tc hear them. 

diLuft U * * 2 ' Hwvtr do not believe thy Unbeliefs if thou muft not 

Dj not believe receive an accufation sgainfr an Elder, but before two or three 

thy unbelief. witneiTes , 1 Tim. 5. 19. fhouldft thou believe an accufation 

againft thy God without any witnefs at all ; there are 

three things which are not fubjeft to any accufation: 

I. Infallible Truths. 2, Supreme ft Laws. 3. The %rcat 

God who mud judge all. Thy heart is deceitful above all 

things, folly and falfhood are in it; and it is *4dverfaritss nc- 

Accofe <HJc **^*S fhould it be believed againft God ? 

fiUnce'Di- UW 3* Ac cafe 7 chide ;, condemn t filence thy difirufts j why 

&\i&s. doeft 

Ver.6. Surelj Gogdnefs and Mercy frail follow me, &c. 3 1 j 

doeft thou diftruft the Lord , doeft thou well to bely truth 
itfelf, is not the Devil the flanderer of God? thou fpeak- 
eft falfly of God , there is a lye in thee, O thou falfe heart , 
I hate thy unbelief, I judge it , I condemn it, fpeak no more , 
fuggeft no more , the Lord is true , though every man be a 

4. Side with god againft thy diftruftful fuggefiiont. Loe 1 SiJc wi.h God 

my unbelieving heart , which fcares me with fears , that the ^««nit dif- 
Lord will fail and not follow me, See, is not this his word ^ ul ru « c * 
wherein he hath promifed, never to leave me nor to for fake me} 

are not thefe the inftances and confeffions of his people that 
he hath remembrcdhis word, that he hath dealt well "toith them 
according to his word,that he hath remembred his Covenant to a 
thoufand generations ^ that not one word hath failed of all his 
promifes? Nay, and unlefs thou wik impudently out- face 
all experience ( which juftifies the truth of God ) thou 
knoweft that he hath kept touch with me all my dayes j his 
word hath been a tried truth even to me : he hath from time 
to time ftill followed me with his mercy and goodnefs. And 
{hould I now credit thee againft a God of goodnefs , a word 
of truth, a cloud of witnefles and mine own experience. 

5. Objett unto thy diftruftful heart ^ the experimental faff- Objcft the ex* 
hood of its own (trong perfwafions. Thou haft many a time rai- peridental 
fed turbulent fufpicions and conclulions in rne againft the fide- Wfwjji of thy 
lity and perpetuity of Gods goodnefs and mercy , as if God ow j) \. ron * 
would have left me in fuch a ftrait, or would forfake me at fuch ^ cr wa lons * 

a time, becaufe I faw no probable means and waies • Yet even 
in all thofe times , God did fall in with unexpected (and unde- 
ferved ) mercy and goodnefs. I did not perifli as thou faidft 

1 (hould, he did not forfake me as thou faidft he would , his 
words have been found a truth , and thy fuggeftions have been 
found a falfhood. David came to the promifed Kingdome, 
though his heart faid , he (hould one day perifb by the hand of 
Satily and Jon.ih came into his holy Temple, though his heart 
faid; lam caft out of thy fight , Jon. z.4. Should fuch a 
branded accufer as thou , convicted as well as indited of perfi- 
dioufnefs and falfhood , a very infamous traducer be heard , 
be regarded, be credited by me ^ who can teftiry for the fide- 
lity of God and have found thee to be fo often falfe in thy per- 

S f petual 

j i-4 Surely Goodnefs a,ni mercy jh nil follow me, Sec Vcr.6. 

petuai fuggeftions againfthim. Thou knoweft that upon the 
ifluingout of more mercy and goodnefs, f I did then humbly 
acknowledge the falfhood and folly of my unbelief, and fhoul d 
I now again hearken unto the foggeftions thereof? 
Weaken thy ^ 5. Weaken that too prong Affettion of thine to earthly things 9 
tooftrongAfh-Tny fuperlative love^hath caufed mod of thy fuperfluous 
^™ t0 elr y thoughts. Where the love of wordly things is too great,there 
the diftrufts for their fupply are too many. The ill ftomack is 
it which caufeth the ill head, and the vaft Sea is moft unquiet. 
If thou didft not thirft afcer worldly things as the only good , 
thou wouldft not be fo unquietly diftruftful about them . More 
indifferent affe&ions would aflfuredly meet with morequict^nd 
confident expectations, 
Oppofc it with 4. Laftly , Oppofe it with fervent and daily fupplicatims. 
fervent and Ufe even that very little Faith which thou haft to fend up more 
daily fupplica- ft ron g cries againft thy diftrufts. Thou doeft daily pray (I 
1 QQSo queftion it not J for daily bread, but as oft as thou prayeft for 

more mercy r fo often do thou pray for more Faith ^ Trouble 
that unbelief which doth fo trouble thy Soul. Strength from 
Heaven , can conquer ftrength for earth , thy diffidence is not 
fo ftrong but Omnipotency can conquer it : as thy necertities 
are not fo many but All-fufficiency may fill them • nor fo ur- 
gent but fidelity can fuccour them. Oh! that thou couldft 
once come to a generous eftimationof things, even that thy 
belief for mercy were far better then the mercy it felf , and 
thereupon be more ardent to truft then to get : but be ferious 
in this and conftant, fo (halt thou be rid of an u ibelieving fpi- 
rit,and get both Heaven and Earth too. 
Motives to this £tteft. 3 . Now the third Queftion , what motives to excite 
tuthw to bewail and judge, and oppofe onr diflruftfulnefs of 
God for his future goodnefs andmtrcy towards us in the things 
of this life, all the dyes of our life, 

Sol. I will reduce all that I intend for this, unto a few 
heads : 

1. The Injury we do unto God, by this diftruftfulnefs. 2. The 
Injury We do to our /elves in our Souls ♦, fceondly, in our bo- 
dies • thirdly, in our profeffion. 3. The Injury which we do 
to our pojfejfed and received mercies. 4» The Injury w&do to 
Mr future fopesmd expectations, 

1. It 

Ver.c*. Surely Goodnefs and Merc) fhall follow me, &c. 315 

1. It is an Injury unto God. It is an Injury 
i. To his All-Jufficiencj. You make him lefs able then the co God - ,. 

poor creature » for the greater credence fuppofcth the grea- fi ] ? ^ sA 
ter ability , and the greater diftrufts implies an opinion of the 
greater impotency. Thou wilt truft man more then thou wile 
truft God, & what is this but that thou exalts the inefficiency 
of the creature above the All- Efficiency of the Creator. Will 
ye make him no God,or a God yet lefs able then a man ? Thou 
denieft unto the great God that fulnefs which thouunjuftly 
afcribeft unto an impotent piece of clay. Thou doft not be- 
lieve that God is a God , the onely being of himfelf , and the 
fole caufe of all Being unto us , that he is the Lord of Heaven 
and earth , infinitely good in himfelf and able to do whatfoe- 
ver he will •, If thou didft , wouldft thou diftruft him for a 
morfel of bread ? wouldft thou depart from the living 
fpring ? 

2. To his Fidelity. We do not judge him faithful if we do j Q his Fidel? - 
diftruft him : and what is the heighth of this fin to make the ;y. 

God of truth to be alyar. If thou believeft his truth , why 
doft thou not truft him ; If thou doft yet diftruft him , thou 
doft interpretatively fay , He will not be faithful though he 
hath promifed. Nay, thou doft not infinuate onely a particu- 
lar but an univerfal unfaithfulnefs to be in him, for if thou judg 
frm to prove unfaithful in the lefs , how canft thou credit him 
in the main things of a better life ? Where the things promi- 
fed are of higher confequence , and therefore of more difficult 
credence. And what can be now faid moretodifgrace the 
Lord ? with us the man is loft, if his credit be loft, if he be one 
whom no man will truft a word chat he fpeaks- andfurelyall 
this glory of God is blemifhcd , if we blemifh his fidelity • 
Now you ravel and untwift all the cords of his excellencies , 
what is all his mercy, or all his goodnefs, or all his power, or 
all his :• '* ; ciency , or all his promifes , if yet he fhould be un- 
faithful, if he ftiould not perform any of thefc according as he 
hath faid ? 

3. To\m Immutability , both of natureand of love , and Ton's Lnmu 
ofcounfeland of promife. We cannot diftruft his fubfequent ta b kiit >'« 
goodnefs and mercy but muft imagine that either the nature of 

God is not as it was , or his love is not to us as it was , or his 

S f 2 purpofc 

516 Surely Coodnefs and Ma cyfhatl follow me, &c* Ver.6 

purpofe (tands not as it did , or his promiie alters from wliatlt 
fpake. Some change or other we murt neceflarily affix unto 
him who yet is not m man that he (bould lie or as the Son of man 
tha$ be Jb$ulA repent. 
To his Provi- 4« To n * s Providence. As if it were not the conftant fpring 
dencc. at which we fhould draw , but that it were like fome climates , 

where one half of the year is day and the other half is night ; 
So Gods Providence would take care for one part of oar lives 
buc leave us (to I know not what ftiiftings ) for the othee 
part, as if he were a God of half of our lives, and yet we are 
bound to feek to him and to truft on him all our dayes. 
It is an Injury 2. It is an Injury to our [elves. 

£3 our felvcs. i . To our Souls • a diftrufting heart of Gods future good* 
To our Souls. ne f s an d mercy is of all the raoft unquiet and diftrefled. l£ 
doth beget tumult and trouble in thofe two faculties, which if 
they be difturbed the whole man is neceflarily difquieted. 

One is in the Imagination , filling it with a Labyrinth of 
ftrange and vain thoughts-, he that will diftrufta perpetual 
providence, cannot avoid the burden of perpetual vexa* 
tion«,for all errour both multiplies and intangles our thoughts 
which will never fettle either on themfelves or other objects if 
once by unbelief they unfettie from Gods fidelity and care ^ 
like a (hip on a rowling Sea, which ftaies no where becaufe it 
hath no anchor. One while we think of this friend and he 
doth nothing , another while of that kinfman and he owns us 
not , then of fuch a courfe and that fails us , and then of ano- 
ther fhift and that is difappointed , and then of fome finful 
trick but this confcience will not fuffer us to ad. A nd now we 
fret and vex, and think again, and vex again , and do nothing 
but change our thoughts , as the (hip doth the waves , but ftill 
we are upon a Sea of tumultuous unquietnefs. 

Another is in the Confcience ^ for as diftruftings are a Sea in 
the mind, fo they area fword in the conference , they vex 
that and wound this , there they are trouble and here they are 
guilt, which of all troubles is the moil: troubling 5 And thefe 
two take their turns, and fo the poor Soul is extremely and 
perpetaully hurried and tormented. When the mind hath 
done thinking then confcience begins judging , and when the 
Bittcrnefs of guilt begins co abate in the conference then multi- 

Vcr.6. Surely Goodnefs snd Mercy flail follow me^fkc. 3 1 7 

tudcsof caring thoughts begin again to work in the mind.- 
Lord, what a Itrange (in is this di^rufffulnejfe \ which burdens 
the mind, wounds the confeience, cracks the foul, never brings 
good, never gives eafe, never affords peace, 

2. To our bodies-. I will not fay much to this, but onely To our i Q ^ ltSm 
that our diltruftfulnefs of Gods future goodnefs and mercy is 

the way to weaken the rafters, to (hake the foundations, to 

crack the golden bowl, and to lofe the filver cord. In a nttu- 

ral way, it waftes our fpirits, dries up our moifture, confumes 

our ftrength, and (hortens our lives. And in a judicial way, 

it is the very finew of difcontentment, which difcontentmenc 

is a very grave to our lives, an advantage to thofe temptations 

which may make an end both of body and foul for ever. ~ n , r 

T ; f -, , , . . . r To our P.ofci- 

3. To our profejfion : how can we glory in the relation off lon< 

children, when by diftruftings on God, we ad the condition of 
fervants; offervants, nay of flaves, the worft of fervants> 
Or why doweboaft in the name of Chriftians when by fuch 
continued diftrufts we aft onely the Ives of Heathens ; to this 
purpofeChriftto hisDifciples, Matth. 6. The life of a child 
is a dependance on his father, and the life of a Chriftian is a de- 
pendanceonhisGod Thou woundeit thy foul and difgraceft 
thy profeilion, as if the God of a Chriftian who hath provided 
infinite glory would ceafe to provide necefTary mercy for 

3. It is An injury to our poffefed and received mercies. » . T . 

1. To the ftaltf them-, every received mercy as it is a coour pofltflS 
fruit of bounty, fo it is a pledge of conftancy. It is like a part and rceeivej 
of money paid upon bond, which confirms the future pauncntl aK *d f * 
for orher particular dayes • fo our mercies poiTefled, they are ^°. cbc * caie 
the particular performances of Gods covenant, aflliring us of Ql k cin ' 
the univerfal, that the reft will come in at the day of our occafi- 
ons and necefiities. But diltruftfulnefs takes them for abfolute 
acquittances and not for particular aflurances, for utter difchar- 
g^s,though they be but further pledges,and pawncs of the good 
yet behind, wherein God will be as faithful to our provision as 
he hath been already to our fuitentation. 

2. To the fruit of them j Every mercy becaufc it comes Tothe t:U " °^ 
from gracioufnefs(hou!d therefore be worn with tlnnkfulnefs * % cm * 
but he who is diitruftful for mercy to come, is alwayes unthank- 

3 1 8 Sure ly Geodnefs And Mercy jball follow me^ &c. Ver.6 

ful for goodneffe thatispaft. No man can biefs God; who 
dares not truft him. This you (hall find in experience, that 
if you be apt to queftion what God will do, you will alfo be as 
apt to ask what God hath done. When future promifes feem 
falfe, their former mercies feem little 5 if they feem to be lies, 
thefe will feem to be cyphars. 
To the ufc of 3 . To the ufe of them : Though all mercies are given to be 
them. y[ t0 our w hceles, I mean to be encouragements to our du- 

ties, yet this is certain, that he who is high in diffidence, is e- 
ver low in obedience. If we will not take hold of Divine pro- 
mifes, it cannot be expeded that Divine Precepts fhould take 
hold of us •, for no man is willing to ferve him whom he dares 
not truft ^ and if we once give way to miftruft Gods faithful* 
neffe, farewel all endeavours of fruitful neffe. It is a common 
obfervation, that didffience in God, makes us either to be Apo- 
ftates, or barren, or very (low. 
To the comfort 4. To the comfort of them : All prefent mercy, is as no mer* 
of them. C y t0 hj m who diftrufts God for future mercy • we lofe the joy 
of what God hath performed, if we renounce the hope of what 
God hath promifed. Your bread will be that of forrow, and 
your waters thofe of LMarah^ &c. for diftrufts are of that na- 
ture that when they withdraw our eyes from God, they alfo 
withdraw our eyes from his kindnefs, and make us to relifh no- 
thing but wants and miferies. It is but as the troubling of cleer 
water, which turns all to mudd and thicknefle. 
To the d urati- 5 ■ To c ^ e ^ Uration °f c ^ em : N° w like a Pofie they wither 
on of them, in the hand • Unbelief makes Winter dayes, troublefom, and 

It is *n injury 4- Ic * s an * n J ur y t0 CHr future hopes as to mercies ex- 
to our future pe&ed j 

hopes. 1. Either that they [ball he none: It is but juft that God 

Either our (hould fruftrate your labours, when you ( as much as in you 
mercies (hall jj es ^ evacUa te his promifes. You may fow with much induftry, 
and reap an harveft of meer vanity ; becaife infidelity hath blaft- 
ed all. Though our fcduftrioufnefle be a fubfervient means., 
yet Gods goodneffe is the iupreme caufe of all our mercies the 
which he may therefore withhold , becaufe we withhold our 
faith. Nay we do indeed keep off his mercies when we do keep 
off our faith ; as he who will not come to thefpring for wa- 

Ver.6. Snrdy Goodnefs and Mercy /hall folltw me> &c. 319 

ter, is the onely enemy to the quenching of his thirft. Sure I 
am that God doth threaten thediftrufting perfon, Jer. \7.Th4t 
he [hall not f< e when good, comet lo. He is under an outlawry, and 
is excluded the priviledge of bleflings. 

2. Or th.it they lb til be mean : foalb fmote the earth but Or th it they 
/W,and EHfiawM angry with him, for he (hould have fmit- ,hallbcincaa ' 
ten it five or fix times , and then Syria had been confumed , 

2 King. 1 3.18,19. It is even thus in our cafe for future bleflings, 
the more diftrufting, believing, and the lefle degree of mercies ; 
the milk comes out mod fully when it is fuekt, and mod fparing- 
ly when forced. How can a man carry away more from Gods 
promifes then his hand of faith will hold 5 according to this faith 
ie it unto thee, faid Chrift to him in the Gofpel^ not that we 
candeferve any blefling more or lelTe, but that God will fill a 
man according as he is able to receive. The great Vintage is 
for the believer, but the gleanings are the moft that a diftrufting 
fpirit can expect. 

3. Or % in getting 1 For our unbelief doth ever fet backOlonjirifcc^ 
our grants, and it is one main delay to our fuits. It is true that tin 5- 

God is ready enough to give when we are upon our knees, but 
what he gives he ftill puts into our hands, if we want hands 
we muft long wait for his gifes, he doth not give until we will 
receive : We are not able to take what God is willing to give 
until we do, at length, get at leaft defires, O that we could 
truft a good and faithful God/ mercy is not more difficult to 
any the .1 to him who is moft facile to diftruft God. The unbe- 
lieving heart, though naturally moft impatient, yet expofeth it 
felf moft to a necefTary and unavoidable patience, for it is made 
to ftay becaufe it makes not it felf to wait. 

4. Or forver in the t.ifting : The fweet waters nv*iil4bCorfo«eriiidbi 
quiet ftreams but thofe are moft brinifh which are moft tumul- lifting. 
tuous. It is faith which gets the pure mercy, the bread that 

hath no forrow with it; but unblief untunes the fpirit of man 
for the mercies of God, and we can.iot taftc them, but with 
fome gravely not winnowed wheat, but intheeare with the 
chaff in it. The old fcentof the veflel, my meaning is, the 
remembrance of our quarrelling unbelief doth much abate the 
delicacy, and at leaft taints the more complete comfortableness 
of what is given to us. 

320 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy jhall follow me, ejrc. Vcr. 6. 

Or more un- ** ° r more mtrt4 ftj in tloe fruition : Even becaufe we are fo 
truftyinthe" diftrufting of God therefore may thefe outward blefllngs 
fruition. prove the more untrufty to us : of neceffity>e muft leave them: 
but many times ftrong unbeliefs are punifhed with fhort en- 
joyments • God will give the mercies to upbraid our unbelief, 
this I can do ; and he will quickly pull off the mercies again to 
punifh our unbelief, and alfo this I can do to the unbelieving 
Vfe 4 Now * P roceec * t0 a f° uf th Ufe from this, that goodnefs and 
Truft upon the merc y ftaI1 follow us a11 tne da y es of our lives, which is this 
Lord for his therefore, all the dayes of our life to truft upon the Lord for hi* 
mercies all the goodnefs and mercy to us 5 and with David here, to fet it down 
dayes of our w j t h confidence, that Surely -, furely Goodnejfe and mercy Jball 
ilfc$ * follow us. 

Becaufe this is a lingular point,and the mod proper improve- 
ment of the text, I will the more largely infift on it by declaring 
thefe particulars. 

1. The manner hoVt vt>e muft perpetually truji upon the Lord 
for his goodneffe and mercy. 

2. The motives to excite us perpetually to truft. 

3. The meanes to enable us thus to do. 

4. The refolution and removal of feme grounds Which do re- 
ft rain , or difturb our hearts from a perpetual trufiing on 

_,. 1 ♦ The manner how We mutt truft on the Lord for his per* 

The manner , , _ ■ ^ ■' j r 

how we muft T#** 1 ™ er V and goodnefle. 

truft on God I- We mujt truft and worl^ : Where the Lord affords meanes 
for his perpetu- for any mercies, though we muft not rely on thofe meanes, yet 
81 m a Cy 'A we mU ^ U ^" e e meanes - Confidence and diligence muft go 

Truft and together-, Confidence in promifes, and diligence in callings. 
God (indeedj is a free Agent and infinite, and therefore can 
work by any meanes, and above any meanes, and without any 
meanes but we are dependant agents, and muft not fo much 
look at theabfolute power of God, as to the ordinary difpenfa-' 
tion of that power which is in fecond caufes and means (other- 
wife 'tis preemption) and at the precept of God which is al- 
wayes fubfervient (ex parte noftra) to the executions of the 
promife of God« Now the Lord hath called men unto particu- 
lar orders and kinds of life and labour ( he made not man to 


Ver.6. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy jhall folUvo me^fkc* 321 

play but to work) and commands men in chofe particular call- 
ings to be faithful and diligent, and upon their faithful diligence 
huh promifed to diitribute and to continue his eourfe of mercy 
and goodnefTe. So then confidence in Gods goodnefTe mult be 
accompanied with diligerce in our callings . the bread of iile- 
netfe id neither fvreet nor fur e : but as our faith mult attend 
Gods promifes, fo muft our diligence attend ourfaith. The 
promifeis ("as it were) the mother to faith,and diligence is (as 
it were) the hand-maid unto that faith : An eye ttpon heaven, 
and an hand upon the plow, this is the waj to reap an harveft : 
an eye upon Gods goodnefTe, and wifeinduftrioufnefTeinour 
places this is the fure way to find bleflings- the diligent hand 

2. PVemufitrttfi and be Sober : To boaft of a vaft faith, and 
yet to be guilty of a wafting hand, is juft as if one fhould pluck Truft and be 
the tap out of the barrel, and yet perfwade himfelf that God 1 * 
will ftill quench his thirft. No but as true trufting in God re- 
quires diligence to obtain, fo it requires frugality to keep ; o- 
therwife we make God to be the Steward of our lufts, and not 
the Patron of our mercies. The riotous and luxurious perfon 
is neighbour to the poor man, and he that will melt his mere es 
may juftly want them. God indeed doth promife to ^cd our 
bodies, but not our lutt of gluttony ^ to clothe our backs, but 
not our luft of pride • to quench our thirft, but not our luft of 
drunkennefTe. If we will truft for mercy, and ftill abufc mercy, 
in the end we fhall find that our faith was but fancy, and our 
eftates will be poverty. But the true dependance, accompani- 
ed v? ith a wife and fober ufe (hall be fure enough of the length 
and continuance of mercies: the father though rich, will give 
enough to the flayed child , but holds up to the prodigal 

3 Wcmufitrnft and Obey. Truft goodnefTe and keep up-T^ftana c- 
righrnefs. Uprightnefs though it be not neceffa'inm camf*** t y&**1' 
it is neceffarium recipiens. Reft on a good God, and walk be- 
fore a good God ; how can we be confident if we be difobedi- 
ent- Evil waves juftly raife in us fears of curfes, rather then 
expectations of bleflings ; as the idle hand is neer to poverty fo 
the wicked heart is neer to curfes. It is but equal that God 
fhould decline them in the eourfe of his goodnclle, who fall 

T t from 

322 Surely Go$dmfs and Mercy jhaUfcUm me^Scc. Vcr.6 

from him in the courfe of obedience • if thy heart be f alfe, ne- 
ver puff up or deceive thy felf, thy mercies are not fare; difo- 
bedience either hath no pofleflions, or not4ong ; the life of 
wickednefTe is quite contrary to the life of faith, or benefit. 
But then we rightly truft on Gods perpetual goodneffe, when 
we carefully look to wayes of uprightneffe. Trufi on the Ltrd 
and do good , and verily thou fiah b$ fed, Pfal. 37,3. And m 
good thing -will he withhold from thim that vtalk^ uprightly, Pfak 
84.11. Truly (or yet (.*".) however, or without ail doubt let 
men think and fpeak as they pleafe and come what will come, 
yet)Godis good to Ifrael, even tofuch at are of a clean heart 9 

4. We muft truft on god and on none elfe but God, not part- 
Truft on God |y. n the Lord, and partly on our own mfdom and Sufficiency y 
and. on none not p ar tly on God, and partly on the arm of flf/h, on the power 
orkindnefle, or relations of men ^ Tis to divide the body 
from the foul, or beames from the Sun ♦ if we part our faith, 
we may juftly be parted from our mercies, we muft not multiply 
Gods, if we will have the true God to multiply bleffings. If 
God be not trufted alone, he is not trufted at all. You may 
(without queftion) ufe all lawful means as your wifdom, and di- 
ligent, and lawful improving of your eftates , (not .fruiting on 
man) and you may in a lawful manner ufe the counfel, love, 
and help of friends. But on none muft you truft except God 
alone, you now hit upon the firing and vain of his jealoufie - r 
you touch him in the glory of a God, if you truft on any buc 
him ; it is dangerous, as Jacob I (hall get a curfe in ftead of a 
Weffing, fo &e. He will be fo far from blefling you, that he 
will certainly inflict on you that heavy curfe, fer. 1 7. 5 . Cur fed 
be the man that trufteth in man, andmakjth fltjh his arm, and 
whofe heart departsth from the Lord, v. 6 For he /ball be like 
the heath in the defdrt, and Jb all not fee when good cometh % but 
fhall inhabit the parched places of the rvilderneffe in a fait land 
arid not inhabited. And fo for confidence in our abundance^ 
(when a man makes the mercies which he bath received from 
God to be his God; Lo, (faith David Pfal 52.7.) This is 
the man that made not Godhisftrength, but trufted in the abun- 
dance of his riches, &c. This man in v. 5 . is one that God will 
deftrey, and take away, and pluck out of his dwelling place, 


Ver.6. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy jha/l follow mt, &c, 


and root out of the land of the living. Single Faith is the only 
way for Angular bleftings.If God alone be enough to thy Faith, 
he alone will be enough to thy condition. 

5. Wemuft tr pi ft and expetl : I will hear\?e«, faith Dav id, j ru ft an j tt . 
what Gcd the Lord trill fpetl^. For a man to be fenfible of his pcft. 
wants, and apprehenfiveofCods fufficiency to fupply them,and 
hereupon to baw his knees in prayer, to befecch a continuation 

of mercies, to think juft then that God is willing to anfwer me, 
but then I rife up and never think ©f that God and of his mer- 
cies more with any expectation that he will do me good, but 
fall to diftrufting as foon as I have done praying, and reafoning 
and concluding yet God will not dome good-, this is an odd 
trufting , to truft and murmure , to trult and vex, to put on 
our feal , and pluck off" our feal-, to think that God is good 
whiles we are praying, and yet he will be unfaithful when we 
arerifen. No, but wemuft truft and maintain our trufting by 
a confident expectation that that God whom we have thus tru- 
fted will furcly do us good • as we mud: look to him, fo we mud 
look from him. Faith mult have an Ear as well as a Tongue -, 
it mud not onely report our requefts to God , but mult ex- 
pect Gods anfwer and decree (as it were) upon our re- 

6. We muft truft and wait, look, and look again, P 'fat. 40. t . Truft and rrah 
1 waited patiently, and he tnclined unto me: Not truft God 

and limit God • I know thou only art able to do me good, and 
wilt^o fo, but thou muft do it now ; this is not right trufting of 
God, for he that believes makes not haft. Then we do rightly 
trull on God, when 1 . We a,cknowledg him alone to be our 
alUfufficient God, the fountain of all mercies. 2. When his pro- # 
mifesofgood draw us unto him. 3. When we move hm inthe 
" name of Chrift, and for his own fake, to make good thofe pro- 
mifesuntous. 4. When we do rely upon him , that he will be 
faithful unto us in the performance of thofe promifes. 5. When 
we exped this performance. 6. When we quietly wait the 
Lords leifure , committing the quantity of our mercies, and 
the feafon of our mercies , and the methods of conveyance of 
thofe mercies wholly unto the wifdom of a cood and of a faith- 
ful Cod. b 

7 mw*ftfimtTHft % and fti/l pray: Faith muft not «>,tSjS. 

Tt 2 and 

324 Surely Goodnefs uni mercy jhdl fellow me, &c Vfcr.6i 

and Prayer maft not faint ; but Faith mufl: fend out Prayer, and 
Prayer muft keep up Faith until God fupply us iv th his mercies 
and goodnefs. If at any time you would unlock the door of 
treafury, you mud then ufe your key and your hand. You (hall 
not want of mercy from God any time of your life , but then 
this treafure cannot be fetch t out unleffe you ufe the key of 
Prayer and hand of Faith. And therefore the Apoftle joyns 
thefe two together, P^/,4.6. Be careful for nothing (do not 
you unnecerfarily burthen your thoughts, diftract youi* minds , 
vex your \\CMts y but ca ft 3 cur care on that God who carethfor 
you) but in every thing (in every occurrence audtime of need, 
for what thing foevcr it bt)let your requefts be made kno^n unto 
God. If in that manner which I have delivered Faith goes out 
and Prayer goes up ; it cannot be but like Noahs Dove,they 
(hould (till return with an Olire branch ^ or like the Bee, they 
fliould return with Honey, with perpetuated anfwers of all ne- 
ceflary and convenient bleflings. 

Secondly, The Motives to excite us unto a perpetual trufting 
on Cod for his perpetual goodnefs and mercy. 
i. In refpeft of our felves : 
i . . Our perpetual Neceffity of his goodneffe and mercy : oc- 
Our perpetual ca fi ons *j (till renew themfeives, which put us upon adepen- 
dance. Either (ickneflfe of body, or weakneffe of body, or pre- 
fejrvation of life, or bleiling on our labours , or fupply of forrre 
fpecial exigences, we are ever in fome wast or other of more 
counfel from God,or more wifdom from God,or more ftrength 
from God, or more food and cloathing from God, the fuppiy 
of all which is only to be had from God. We can no more 
help our felves at one time then at an other, our helps, our de- 
deliverance, our prefervations , our profperities, our fafeties 
are (till and only in his hands. 
Oar perpetual 2. Our perpetual Duty . Truft ix the Lirdforeverjh.26.4. 
&wf' fo that Prophet : and trufl in him at all times, fo- Dwid y Pfah 

6z 3. It is not a peculiar or extraordinary duty, as faitingsand 
vowings are, which are to be ufed and made only upon fome 
fpecial and temporary occadons , but an ordinary, daily and 
conftant duty. As we delire to live at all times, fo muft we trufl: 
at all times. If he will be our God for ever,then our hearts muft 
rely and truii .on him for ever,, I 

1< Or 


In ttCptSt of 
our felves. 

Vcr.5. Snrelj Goodnefs and Mercj fhdl follow me^ &C« 325 

$.Our irtat Hononr : This indeed is the life of a Chriftian and Oar great \U- 
of a Child. Ic is the life of Heathens to vex themlelves with nour * 
cares, but it is the life of Chriftian? to caft their circs on God. 
Now they are diftinguifhed from other men,and do (hyv them- 
lelves tobe more then men, to Inve better hopes then in earth • 
that they have a God who will never leave them nor forfake 

4. Our be/l Comfort : Therefore is this milting called a re p* bcft Com * 
fting, 7/4/ 37.7. It will eafe you of all thofe unreafonable 

fcruples, and doubts, and hurrying cares and imaginations , and 
it will free you of all thofe cutting and opprefling fears , and 
in (lead of both it will fill your confeiences with peace, and your 
minds with hopes. The believer is above all wants and dil- 
comforts. Thou arc never in the harbour until thou canft catt 
anchor by faith ; thou arc above all wants and fears of want ^ 
for the Lord will do thee good, he will not fail thee ; this now 
is the ftrength of thy heart and the joy of thy heart. 

5, Our fure/i Gain ; If you be not lefs then believers, you ~ ^ « 
cannot be lefs then pofTetfbrs • believ: in the Lndy.nr God, fo Q am . 
fbilljofi be (fiubUjhsd ^ faid Jahofhaphat, 2Chro.zo.20. Mj 

heart trafled in him , and I am helped ,faid David, Pfal. 28. 7. 

Q ho* great is the goodnefs Which thou baft laid up for them that 

fear thee, Vchich thou h.tfi wronght for th-m tuat trttfl on thte be- 

frcthe fans of m:n, Pfal.31.19. Mark the place, goodnefs is 

the thing which we defire , great goodneO that is as much as 

wecandeire, O how great goodnefs, this is more then we 

need to defire. I Iere is great goodnefs^and fo great that T>.t- 

f/icannotexprefs it, and therefore faith, O how great is t &c. 

and thisunexpreiTihiy great goodnefs is laid up,iaidup(* jKepc 

fafe and fure as a treafury and lingular portion by the Lord (and 

th:refore he faith which tkoQ,Thj* hail hid up ) But for whom, 

for thsmthit f tar thee ^ abuddam and exceeding goodoefi is 

laid up forthem ■ yea, it miy belaid up and never come one to 

them ; nay, and now he ails , H? hick tin* kM ft ^refafhtfir 

them that t'nfk in th?e. M:rcy is laid up if we fear the Lord , 

and mercy (hill be laid out , if we trull on the Lord, even that 

it and unutterable goodnefs and mercy which the eyes of 

man never law, nor the eares of man ever heard, nor could it en- 

:er into the heart of man to imagine. If we by faith m.igni- 


***$i6 Surd) Qoodnt\$ and Mercy fh all follow me> &c. Vcr 6 

fie the Lord our God, he will then magnifie his mercy above 
all his name ; God will be glorious in mercy if wedoglorifie 
him by beleeving. 
Itirefpcdof 2 * In refped of God. 

Go a. i. The Lord doth delight to do us good for ever: Hetakesit 

G^d doth de- as an unworthy affront and vile prejudice to himfelf , when we 

light to do us imagine that his hand is (hortned, that it cannot fave or that 

pod for ever. an y ^g j s coo ^ard for him(as in Mofes)ot that he faints and is 

weary. It is no troublefome thing to him to lengthen a mercy as 

once to g : ve it. Nor is it a burdenfome thing to him to hold 

open the fountain he delights to (hew and continue greater 

mercies then the things of the world come to, and therefore 

repines not to flnew himfelf the Lord of earth, who is willing 

alfo to (hew himfelfthe Lord of heaven. 

2. The Lord doth delight in this , that we do truft upon him 

HfthtlAchiV for our g° od : fo DavU 4*™**% P6I.147.1 1. The Lord 
that wc truft on taketh pUafure in them that fear him , in thofe that hope in his 
himforour mercy. Man is often troubled and grieved becaufe of the fre- 
good. quent feekingsand relyings of others upon him, for be hath 

but a weak bottom, and his bounty is onely as water in a bucket, 
which may be all fpent. But the Lord doth not fo , for in him 
goodnefs is as water in the Sea which can never be diminished 
or exhaufted. So far is he from it that he both commands and 
commends our trufting on him,(till and takes it for a kind of ho- 
nour that we do him, and indeed fo we do, we honour him rrroft 
when we truft him rnoft , for now we make him a God indeed , 
and our God, and exalt all his attributes, &c. 
Oar trufting 3. Our trttfli*<g en him doth ftill ingage him : There are 
on him doth two things which do engage the Lord to come in to the good 
him lD '* BC °^ ^ s k rvants , One is his own faithfulnefs , he will remember 
his Covenant for ever. Faithful is he who hath promifed , who 
aljo will do it % 1 Thef. 5. Another is our faith; look as if a 
bond be drawn of mu L ual Covenant , if both the parties put to 
their feales,it is now firm • if we put to our feal offaith, to Gods 
Now you may ^ of truth , now the Lord is fully engaged, a man may fue him 
luc; now upon his Covenant j Thou faidft that if I would truft thee, 

thou wouldft do me good • Lord, I do truft on thy word of 
And now God truth ., remember the word upon which thou haft caufed me 
will perform, to truft. And now the Lord will affuredly perform his Cove- 

Vcr.6. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy jl? all follow me^&cc. 327 

nanC. Read I fa. 26 3 . Thou wilt kfc? him in perfctl peace 
jrhofe mind is flayed on thce^ Otcatife he trufieth on thee. 

And now.^iveme leave to make a little digrefiion for the .. ffi 
occasion of the Sacrament , this day you have heard that tern - upan 6 cccafiTn 
poral goodnc'.s ami mercy (hall follow the people of GodaF! fchcSacra- 
their dayes , and it is as fure that fpiritual goodnefs and mercy men:, 
fhall follow their fouls; why doth the husbandman plow his 
land and low his feed, and water the furrowes flill, but that 
another crop is to come? 

And why doth the Lord continue (till his blefled ordinances 
of Word and Sacrament : but becaufe he intends more fpiritual 
mercy and goodnefs unto our fouls > Two things the continua- 
tion of heavenly means may affure Gods people of-, One is 
of their -own imperfeclioij, that they are yet but children he 
drawes out thefe breft To much and often : When we need no 
more grace then need we no more means ; the ftaff is taken a- 
way when the perfon is perfectly recovered, and our perfect re- 
covery is not till we get into heaven. 

Anothet is of Gods con/lint intention of the befl gnod unto 
them: as the removing of his ordinances is a token of great 
wrath, fo the continuation of themisafign of great mercy, 
both to call fome and to ftrengthen other*. Now this is the 
prefent duty of you, who have (1 hope) in fome competent and 
confcionable meafure , fearched your wayes , humbled your 
hearts, renewed your repentance and defires after Chnft. I fay 
your main prefent duty is now, with T>avid,to fay, Surely Faith now our 
goodnefs and mercy fiat follow me all the days of my life. Sure- penent duty. 
ly the Lord will do me yet more good, who need it,and prize it, 
and feek it. Tell me,doeft thou not need more ttrength againlt 
thy fins } more additions to the graces of faith, knowlcdg, love, 
patience , meeknefs ? and more inlargements to thy affections, 
in fear, and joy, and hatred, and defire, and hope,and love, and 
dclighr? &c. moreltrength 'io thy bean for tcndernefs,and foft- 
nefs , for upnghtnefs and (teJfcftnefs , for heavenly mindednefs 
and godlinefs ? co thy life for more evcnnefSjComlinef^wifdomf, 
fruitfulnefs. O now truft on the Lord, truft on him in and 
through Chrift for fpiritual mercy and goodnefs in all thefe to 
follow thee- believe on the Lord that he will add more grace, 
more ftrength,more peace this day. 

iXoe 1 The Lord Jefus is come again in the ordinance of his ^ Motives, . 

328 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy jball follow me, &c . Ver.5 

hft fupper : he out of whofe fulnefs thou maijt receive grace 
for %race ; he in whom are all the promifes are yea and Amen ; 
he who hath faid, That fin fhad not have dominion over you, but 
judgment fhal break forth into vittory.he who by his death made 
thy peace , by his blood purchafed thy foul, by his Spirit hath 
changed thy foul, by his grace hath hitherto kept and preferved 
thy foul ; Jefus Chnft yefterday, to day and for ever •, he is the 
object: of thy faith for ever , as willing to give thee grace as to 
give thee heaven.as willing to add to thy good as ro beg in it ^ 
as willing to continue and finifh as tobegin and add. 

2. Here is the feal of God which thou maift look on this day 
to afTure thee of his immutable goodnefs and mercy. What is 
the Sacrament a feal of . ? furely of the New Teftament , of the 
Covenant of grace , and what is that Covenant ; but I ypill be 
their God and they [bail be my people • I will fhew them mercy , 
I will give grace, keep grace, ftrcngthen grace, comfort grace , 
crown grace. And is this Covenant like that Covenant which 
the Jews brake and vacuated ? O no ! it is an everlafting Co- 
venant, The Lord will never turn away from doing of us good. 
This Sacrament then is the feal of Gods gracious and eternal 
Covenant, how (houldft thou put thy feal unto it. Trufton 
the Lord forever, for in him is everlafting ftrength, everlafting 
goodnefs , everlafting mercy and faithfulnefs , thou needeft 
more pardon and grace, thou feekeft to himformorp, thou 
prepared: thy felf for more, thou art even now going for more. 
O then believe, believe, and thou (halt find more and go home 
with more. 

3. The Sacrament will do you no good now , if you bring 
not faith now •, in renewed duties a renewed faith is necefTary 

Means to cna-^ or renewed mercies. True, the Habit continues and needs not 
ble co a pcrpe- to be renewed , but the ad muft be renewed as the child again 
cual trufting on muft apply the mouth to the brcft. You cannot rightly imagine 
Gods goodnefs that your former acts ferve for all future ti nes. 
*?AitF tC Z' Thirdly, The Means to enable us to a perpetual trufting 

Adiltinctcon- r> j j / 1 » # » r f t l l £ 

vi&ion of God on ^Oas goodnefs and mercy ail the dr.es of our lives. The belt 

in ihc peculiar that I can think on,I will reprefent at this time unto you. 

attributes of 1, A clear and djiincl conviclion of God in the peculiar attrU 

HIsailfufncicn- J# Ris M f H ^ d;Hejt Inform and ftabli fo the mind and j udg . 


Vcr.6. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy frail follow me, ejrc. 313 

mcnt with the nature of that God whom thou fcrveft- do not 
interpret him by the traditions of men, nor of thy own diftem- 
pers , nor of thy own thoughts. Hagar fa-.v no more water 
then was in her bottle , and therefore fhe (eartd and Wept , She 
did not fee the fpring which was neer unto her, if (he had, fhe 
had been quiet. We judg of Cod by that ftrength which we fee 
in man,and by that love we fee in man,and by that power which 
wefee in man,and by thofe raies and fhadowes of good which wc 
fee in man,and becaufe we obferve an imperfection and frailty in 
the creature we are apt to judg of the fame in the Creator : But 
the clouds are one thing and the Sea another-, the ftreames arc 
one thing and thefpring another: The Portion of Jacob is not /tke 
idols nor yet like the creatures.he is infinite in goodnefs, there is 
no fearchingofhisundcrftanding , his mercies are like the greac 
dcep,and there is no end of his greatnefs. O Chriitian, the God 
whom thou fcrveft is fo perfect , that no good can be added 
unto him , and fo full that all good comes from him and (o in- 
finite that nothing is diminifhed in him , fie lofeth nothing by 
eternal communications of his goodnefs ; what is the Sun im- 
payred by all the light which it hath given fincethe Creation 
to this day ? he makes happy and yet is not the lefs happy , he 
makes good,and yet is never the lefTe good, he ihews mercy and 
yet is ftill full of mercy. 

2. His Immutability : Do not fhadow andeclipfe the un- ,^ is Imaau:abi ' 
changeble God with imaginations of changes,what he was, that uy " 
he is for ever • his name is not,I was,nor is it,I will be but / am % 
is his name, even Jehovah, by that will he be known for ever . 
Was he able once , he is able for ever ♦, was he loving once, he 
will love thee for ever, was he merciful once, he will fhew mercy 
for ever ; was he faithful once , he will keep truth for ever • 
fearch the Scriptures and perufe them well, thou (halt find him 
like himfelf in his naturelike himfelf in his love, like himfelf in 
his Covenant , he will not alter the thing that is gon out of his 
mouth : When thou beholdcft God as he is in himfelf,and as he 
hath made known himfelf, a ftrength without weakne r s.a fulnefs 
without defed,a lability without change,a fovereignty without ..,.., -•> 
dependance,a truth without falfhood, how will thy herfrt hereby m j,^^ j 
be enabled to adventure for ever to truft on him ? t h a; h c 1$ our 

j^ 2. A /olid demonflraticn that he is our God : This Cjod is our Gzd. 

U u Cjd 

3 jo Surely Godnefs and Mercy Jh all follew w*,&c. Ver,6 

God (hkh David, Pfal.48. l±.) and thence concludes, he Veittfo 
our Guide even to death.! confeffe that a ftranger hath not that 
ground of confidence as a childjand he who fufpe&s his intereft 
in God, will not fo confidently bear up in his hopes from God. 
When a man is ftill to fay as they of David, what portion hav* 
weinDzvid? fo, what intereft have we in God? Abfolutef 
fulneffe when it is out of a Relation is a weak motive, but then 
it is ftrongeft when it becomes Relative. Greatnefie and abi- 
lity inafatherafte&s the fon much, and a rich man in bond id 
very apt to quicken our confidence of the good which he under- 
takes ., fo God in Relation, and God in Covenant, &c. 

Therefore reft not in a condition of doubtfulnefTe , give all 
diligence to make it fure, that the Lord is reconciled to ttae in 
Chrift, that he is become a father to thee, that he is entred in- 
to Covenant with thee, and that he hath by his own promifes 
made himfelf a debtor to thee. Thou wouldft not imagine 
what wings and ftrength this would add unto thy confidence of 
his perpetual goodnefle for thee ; thou wouldft not fear to go 
to thy father , nor to truft upon thy God. / am thine, faith 
David, fave me ; and fo the Church, fee^ we befeech thee, we 
are all thy people. 
An Advancing I* An Advancing (I tidy of the promifes ; the promifes are 
ftudy of the to Faith , as the aire is to the wings of a bird , or as the water 
Fr omifes. jg t0 the fins of a fifh •, they bear up the heart and raife it unto 
s.Know them. q q ^ jf ^ QU ^ nQW not t ^ cm in t ^ e f evera j branches of them 

anfweringyour fcveral occafions, if you know them not in the 
caufe of them that they are theexpreffionsof God, of the 
gracious intentions of a God who hath as much power to exe- 
cute them as he had will to make them •, it is impofiible that 
you fhould by Faith rife up unto God to truft upon him : but 
you muft acquaint your felvcs with the Word of God , with 
thofe precious promifes upon which Faith onely can work. 
i*Crc<Ht them. And then as you muft know them, fo you muft give credit 
to them againft all words ^ though the mountains fbould be cafi 
into the defth of the Seas, though the fig-tree Jhsuld not bloffom 9 
though thy heart (hould fay the contrary , believe them not , 
confult not with them 1 though heart and flerti fay to the 
contrary , yet God is thy portion for ever. Honour the Lord 
ia his promifes above all ^ Remember him whp hath faid, that 

Vcr.6. Surely Geodnefs And Mercy jhall follow me^ &c. 331 

He will never leave thee nor for fake thte. It is God who 
hath faid it, who hath faid it and will perform it • Thou maift 
venture thy life, yea, thy Salvation upon what he hath faid , 
for he is able and faithful who hath promifed thee. If corrupt 
reafonings interpofe themfelves and queftion how it can be • if 
unbelieving fenfe fuggefts > I can fee no hope or probability in 
all the world how this wili be effected, fnut thy ears againft 
them and thy heart againft them , and fay , though I fee no 
means, I yet fee promifes •, though I cannot fee the man who 
will do me good, yet I do fee the God that will do me good ; 
his word hath been tried feven times , I have his promife, I will 
live and dye upon it. Abraham did not confider his own body 
but God who promifed. 

4. A Right improvement of Experiences ; if thou wouldft A Rijh: inw 
enable thy heart for the future, look unto what hath been paft. P'ovcmcm of 
%Afaph was quarrelling for the future , will the Lord befavcu* E x P c < lcncc '- 
rable no more I how doth he take off his heart from this and fet 
it right again? See Tfal. 7 7. 10. I will remember the jears of 
the right hand of the mo ft high. v. 1 1 . 1 W/7/ remember the works 
of the Lord^ furely I will remember thy wonders of old. A right 
remembrance enabled him to a future confidence, q. d. What ! 
The Lord be favourable no more, and merciful no more 1 a- 
way, away with thefe thoughts . he who hath been merciful to 
me fo many years, fo able to do me good, and fo willing, that 
fometimes he hath almoft wrought wonders to do me good,fhall 
I queftion this God for the future > indeed I did queftion his 
future goodnelTe,but it was my prefent infirmity : and fo he rea- 
red up his faith again. The like fhould we do, bring out expe- 
riences and they will revive our truftings : Why I I was as ill 
deferving heretofore, as unworthy heretofore, as unable of my 
fclf heretofore, in greater wants heretofore j I did then call up* 
on the Lord and he heard me, truft upon the Lord and he help- 
ed me j he is as able now, as near now, as good now, as willing 
now, as faithful now ; I will truft him agiin,for he will be faith- 
ful and good to me for ever. 

5. Keep up the poVeerofGodlinefs. The more careful life ^ ^ rht 
and the more confident milling go together. Guilt in con- pj w Cr ot£o4- 
fcieoce is a great weakning to forwardnefs in believing. D*vids Ihcu. 
(ins were fo hard upon him, that he was not able to look up; 

Uu 2 the 

~ $i6~ Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fbad follow me, &c. Ver. 6 

the wounded eye is not fo ready co iee, and the wounded hand 
is not fo able to ftretch out and clafp. Great difputes in con- 
ference ever breed great difpute s with Gods promiies. There- 
fore be not formal in a good way nor willingly wandring in an 
evil way ; but keep thy heart right , love the Lord indeed , 
fear him indeed, ferve him indeed, with an inflamed heart, 
with a perfect heart, Three things will come upon this : i . «£*- 
renitj cfConfcience. 2. Safety of Comforts. And 3. Confi- 
dence in god. Thou wilt not be afraid to go to a well pleafed 
God-, the promifes lye open to thee, what ftiould hinder but 
that God will bleffe the upright , or that they fhould be- 
lieve it. 
A right iffipro- 6 ^rig^ improving of pre fen t mercies: Mercies abufed 
m«rics. Pr may juftly make us fear whether the Lord will truft us with 
more fuch mercies : the ill Debtor hath not the face or hope 
to come to his Creditor whom he hath wronged, or dealt un- 
kindly or falfely with. The heart is ready to fink and checks 
it felf when calling for more mercy , which knows that 
it made Gods mercies to ferve againft Gods glory. But the 
fervant who hath imployed the ftockfor his matters advantage, 
may confidently come and defiremore fupply. Ifthouufeft 
mercies well, thou wilt be more confident thit God (uponoc- 
cafions) will intruft thee with more. Thou haft the fame truth 
now to plead (his promife) and the fame end now to urge (his 
glory.) Be faithful in the pofTeflion, and thou mayeft be confi- 
dent in the expectation of mercy and goodnefs. 
Be much in 7. To all thefe add much Prayer to the Lord to help thy Vn- 

prayw to God belie fand to increafe thy Faith ; And likewife be confeientioufly 
to help thy ua- conV erfant in reading and hearing of his Word , and receiving 
of the Sacrament,through thefe is the Arm of the Lord revealed, 
and by them as Faith is wrought, fo it is ftrengthened and ena- 
bled to all its ads. 

Scruples rcfolv- Fourthly, The Cafes ofScruples refolved and taken orT,which 
«d. either keep off, or keep us weak in truftingon Gods future 

goodnefs and mere y. 

^havebutlic- y ]e ^ t For a man objefts, I fliould truft on the Lord that 

c ia and. k' s g 00C j ne (f e an j m *j rc y would follow me all my day es, if I did 

not fee fo little in hand , but fo little a portioa is not likely to 

* J hold 

Ver.<5. Surely Goodnefs and Mercy frail follow mc^c. 3 1 7 

hold out for a long life and many occasions. 

Sol. But firft, Arc thou furc that thy life (bill be long ? per- Anfacred. 
haps it (hall be fhort, very (hort, this night, the next day, or the 
next week, and then a little mercy may ferve for a Kittle time 
Thou (halt not need mercy for thy life, when life is 

2. But admit that thy life (hall be long, and that which thou 
haft for the prefent is little , yet thou halt no caufe to diftruit 
for the future. A thing may be little in a double refped:, i.In 
the Quantity of it, 2. In the Caufe of it. The Chriftians 
portion for externals may be little in tie quantity of it, perhaps 
it may be no more then duly bread • but ) et it is never little in 
the caufe of it, the caufe of thy little good , will be a conftant 
caufe of fufficient good unto thee. As the light in the morn- 
ing depends upon the Sun, fo a little under fupply, if they be 
but drops ftill trickling from a living fpring , will hold out all 
thy dayes,(houldtt thou live as long as Msthufelalo. Not what 
thou feeft in hand, but in Gods promifes, is that which mult be 
the ground of thy confidence. Jhs ( I think) may ftay thy 
heart and fupportthy confidence , that God who hath given 
thee little will ftill give thee enough, for he hath faid, I will ne- 
ver leave thee nor for -fa ke thee. 

Ob j. 'But many Icjfes are upon me , and my eftate begins to M any j c ^ s 
pine away, and therefore I fear that mercy and goodnelfe will arc upon mc. 
not follow me all my dayes. 

Sol. 1. Dofr thou not live though} Haflthou not food and A r . 
rajment i If fo, then hitherto thou haft goodnefle and mercy. n * er " ' 
What if a man loofe five or lix ounces of blood } perhaps he 
might well ipare it, too much in the veins caufeth Feaversand 
diieafes. Thou knoweft not but thy plenty might make thee 
(ick ; and what if God to keep thy foul right , hath retrained 
thee only to a wholfome diet, to a moderate eftate, which 
though it \>t not fo large as before, yet is it a pregnant teftimo- 
nyof hisgoodnefTe and mercy. The convenient eftate 1 sal- 
wayes a good and the belt mercy. Again, thou haft loft no- 
thing which could be a fpring or caufe of perpetual good to 
thee, if it had, it had, not been loft ; the Sun is not down, 
2. Tint haw cones thu impairing} If by finful acts , then 


3 34 Surtl) 6oodnt\s and Mercy [kail follow we y &c. Vet. 6 

mend thy heart and God will mend his bleffings; do thy firft 
works, fo fhalt thou have (if fit) thy fir ft wages: if it comes 
in a way of unavoidable providence, then obferve whether 
though much be gone yet fufficient is not left ; fufficient,not to 
Luft, but to Nature • fufficient, not for the Wayes of finful ex- 
pending, but to the Duties of thy calling. If fo, then prefect 
mercies are enough for the prefent, and thou haft ftill caufe not 
only to truft God, but alfo to bleffe him. 

Or thirdly, Suppofe that,(which is not J that all indeed were 
loft, that thou haft nothing in hand, yet haft thou ftill caufe to 
truft, becaufe enough ftill appears in Gods promifes, >Thc 
Birds chirp and fing at noon, who yet know not whereto find a 
fupper-, Providence to them is a continual Storehoufe : Learn 
of them, if thou haft any thing to fupport, yet blefle and truft, 
be confident that the Providence of a Creator , the' Goodnefs 
of a Father, or the Promifes of a God will find out fomething 
(which thou mayeft call mercy) for the next meal. 

We know not Ob.But we know not what the LMalice^andpeVeer^nd crutU 

what the malice tj of evil men may do % who may ftrip us of all. 

of men may do SoLi. It's true, That if the mercies of the wicked be cruel, 
without all doubt their cruelties are cruelty it felf. 2. But 
then, thou art never fo in evil mens fingers, but thou art more 
in Gods hands ; they may take away things but not mercies. 
As yet Divine Power hath kept Divine Bleflings, Why fhouldft 
thou queftion whether God will be able hereafter, who -is faith- 
ful now? It is not what man can do, but whet God hath pro- 
mifed : as the infidelity of fome, fo the malice of none fhall e- 
vacuate his truth ; as our own hearts, fo our Enemies fhall be 
found Liars : no more but this , even in the worlt of times 
thou haft the beft of promifes to look upon, and a God who 
will know thee in adverfities, as well as in liberties. I told you 
before , that though the candle may be put out, yet the Sun 
cannot , and Clouds will drop, when Pipes are flopped. 

Ob. But yet I fee no Probable wayes of m\ fnture fubfiftence 

I fee no proba- and how things will hold out with me. 

ble wayes of SoL\. Nay but do not play the foolifh Prodigal, who muft 
fubfift- h ave a i| hi s portion in his own hands,and then fpent all and came 
to beggery.lt is far better that God fhould difpenfe thy mercies 
by degrees,then that thou fhouldft have ftill the fight and com; 


againft us 


Vcr .6." Surely Gtodnefs and Mercy fh all follow me,8tc. 335 

mand of them, tky mercies were loft if thou were the Matter 
of them. 

2. Thou wouldft fcourge thy child to cry out that it (hall be 
flarved, becaufe it hath not bread and butter in the hand, when 
yet there is great ftore in the cupboard: And what is due to 
thee who liveft upon prefent mercies, and baft a plentiful rever- 
fionof them for all feafons in the immutable promifes of a 

3. Dd thou thy duty of walking uprightly and diligently 
and to truft on God and leave it to him for the wayes and me- 
thods : Believe me thou {hale find him as good as he is able, 
and as wife as he is faithful. 

Obj. But yet we have heard,and perhaps fecn many good pec Min f Goij 
fie in great ftraits. people have 

Sol, 'Tis true; He who hath promifed them mercy and been in ftrairs. 
goodnefle, hath not yet promifed them exception from the Am * ere <*-. .„ 
croffe and troubles. 

2. But didft thou ever read or know any good man that 
wanted mercy and goodneffc in his greateft trouble ? the (hip 
may be in a ftorm, but was it without a Pilot ? The good man 
hath alwayesthat mercy which is a proper mercy for his con- 
dition, he hath the prefence of God in his afliltance, in his con- 
folation, in his direction, in his patience, in his prcfervation 
even to the very laft. To think that a good man muft alwayes 
have Plenty , Profperity , Dignity , Liberty , Health , &c. 
this is a folly, as if GoodnefTe and Mercy were to be fecn one- 
ly in a Sun-fhining day ^ or as if God did not referve peculiar 
mercies for every eltate j GoodnefTe and Mercy are like the Sun 
which rifeth not onely in the Summer, but in the Winter ; Read 
the Apoftle, At ch, wor/r^ 2 Cor.4 8. We Are troubled on every 
fide y yet rot diftrejftd^ We Are perplexed , but not in defpnir • 
V.9 PerffChted.b't tut for/ 4^*6, ca(r down but net deftroyed » 
there was much mercy in the midft of much mifery : yea, and 
a 1 tele before this, 2 Cor. 1.4. He faith of God, That he com- 
forttd themin all thtir tribuUtio*. Men troubled but God 
comforted, and v. 5. *At the fu firings of fhrift abound in us 
fo our confoUtyns alf abound by Chrift. So that here is no 
trouble without a comfort,nay no fuffering fo great bat it is ex- 
ceeded by a greater comfort from Chrift. 


j20 Surely Goodnefs and Mercy fhall follow me, &c. Vcr. 6i 

Sbail we noc Ob). But (hall we not 'Be too bold info often coming And trttft- 

be too bold in fag on God ftili, ftill, from day to day. 

often truftin^? Sol T N ay then if Infidelity will turn into Modefty, and 
thou wouldft turn believing into a complement, I know no fuch 
drains of courtefie at the Court of Heaven. 

2. With man this were a wife demurre ; for we find it even 
in the higheft Profeffions of Love, and defires of being bold 
and free, yet frequency breeds a burden. We are apt to deal 
with people too familiar with our kindneffe, as with old fer- 
vants, caft them off : It is thu^ with vain man, with falfe-hearted 
man, but it is not fo with God. Repent to the higheft, be- 
lieve to the utmoft, thou (halt neither confume his treafury, 
nor offend his kindneffe : He knowes, O man, that thou need- 
-eft him daily, every hour, every moment, he therefore calls on 
thee, chargeth thee to come and truft , takes it ill if thou miffe 
his door, if he doth not at all times upon all occafions hear of 
thee ; he is not weary of doing thee any good. 

Many [of 6ods Ob. But may not this be fVorldlinefs ftill to crave for out- 

pcople .farre ■ warc i Mercy and Goodneffe ? 

A^f^cd. $ Soi ' No * T . herc *? a differencc * twixt a perpetual feeking 
and an only feeking It is duty Still to fee^our bread from heaven^ 
though it is finful worldlineffe , when we feeh^ bread onely. 
2. And 'Tmxt Daily feeking^and Principal feeding i if we 
feek for them as the beft things we fin ; if we feek them as fub- 
ordinate to the beft things, now it is but the acting of duty. 
Outward mercies are not fo fufficient, as to fee k them Only, nor 
fo high, as to feek them Primarily , nor yet fo low a cyphar as 
to neglect the feeking of them Wholly. God hath given them 
to us for the prefent, and hath prom ifed them unto us for the 
future and therefore we may feek unto him for them, andalfo 
truft upon him for them, that fo Goodneffe and Mercy may fol- 
low us all the dayes of our lives. 


Ver.6. And 1 tvilt dwell in the Houfe of the Lord for ever* 337 

P S A L. 2$. 6. 

And I mil dwell in the Houfe $f the Lord 

for ever. 

THE former words declared 'David's Cor.fide nee, and thefe 
laft words do difcover David's Confcience. God will 
follow David with mercy all his life , and therefore 
David will follow God with duty all his dayes. So that in this 
vcrfeGodand Man do meet, Mercj and Obedience, Cjoodnefs 
and Gvdlinefs embrace each other. Here is a Continued dt- 
[cent of blcjfing from God, and alfo a Con ft ant rent of fervite 
from David. 

I will briefly open the terms, and then infill on fuch Propofi- 
tions as naturally refult from them. 

1 2 (•'•) David, who had received fo many mercies already 
and was aftured of the perpetuity and duration of them. 

Willdvoeir\ RevertarfdiWhzArias Montanm : Perhaps he 
thought 'Davidhzd a mind of Heaven, unto which he (hould 
be (after all goodnefle participated here on earth) graciouOy 
turned over at laft •, R equiefc am, faith Pagnin, I will reft, <j-e . 
and indeed if any houfe be our reft, it is the houfe of God. Se- 
debo % faith Mufcnlta y I will fit, notftep inandtbenrun out, 
but Stay, tAbide: we read it Habit abo I will dwell. To dwell 
in a place is more then to view it or eat in it, or lodge in it. 1c 
imports a willing and fetled refidence : indeed Habite,! do 
dwell, may be capable of conftraint ( iy„t is me that I muft 
drvell in Mefech (aid David) but Habitabo I will dwell, this 
implies a voluntary and delightful refidence, and not onely resi- 
lience but alfo employment, &c. 

In the houfe of the Lor d~\ The houfe of God is fometimes 
taken for, 1 Heaven, this is that Upper Houfe, that Houfe of 
State, In irhich,Chn([ faith, Joh.14.2. There are ma-ny CMd*« 
ficns. S. Ptiul calls it a 'Building, not made with hands, eter- 
nal in the heavens y 2 Cor.5. j, Even the poorefl: Saint who 

X x hath 

338 And i will dwell in the Houfe of the Lord for ever. Vcd.6~ 

hath not any houfc on earth, hath yet an houfe in heaven. 

2. The Church or people of God y whether diftributively •, e- 
very pious perfon is Gods houfe Hebr.i.6. or collectively and 
thus it is fometimes taken for a particular affembly, i Tim t $.f. 
and fometimes for the Catholick Church, Hek^.z. 
ff 3. Mount Moriah, where David intended to build a Tem- 
ple to the Lord, but Solomon built him an houfe which Tem- 
ple wasaFgure of the Church of God The Houfe of the 
Lord (in this place) is taken for the Temple of the Lord, the 
place of publick and folemn worfhip where facrifices were of- 
fered and. other holy duties performed of praying and praif- 
ing God. 
»>tt> "HfcA ^ oY ever 3 Lcorer jamim -, In longitn&inem dUrum for length 
of dayes, a long time, all my time will I ipend where God is 
worfhipped and in the worfhip of God : Cum Memfais Ec- 
cleji* in cultu publico , faith CMufculus upon this place. 

There are three Proportions obfervable out of thefe words^ 

r. That the Church is the Houfe of God. 

2. That we mult join our felves for ever to the publick wor- 
fhip and ferviceof God. 

3 . That Angular mercies fhould lead us on to the mod lingu- 
lar duties. 

\ That the Church of God is the Houfe of God y there is Eccle- 

Th rh h' fi a Malign anti urn , this is Dmus Iniquitdtu , the Divel's 

«rf God is'the Chappel. 2> Militantium, This is Domus Untlita' is , God's 

houfe of God. Oratory. J*. Triumphaniium f This is, Dwtus Majeftatis, 

the Houfe of Glory. 

The Church is fometimes taken,. 

Locally , For the Recipiens i and this is Domus 'Dei too , 
jQucad fepe ratiom m y it is a Manfion fet apart and devoted to 
God for his worfhip, and Qj^cad Operationem, God is pleaf- 
ed to fill this Temple with his Glory in the faithful aud power- 
ful efficacies of his Ordinances. 

2. Per/onallj : For the (fonftituens *, and fo the AfTembly 
profefling the true Faith and Worfhip of God is "Domus Dej : 
As in an houfe, there 

1. Is Fundamentum , the comer-ftoneuipon which all is laid, 
fo the Church hath its foundation^even Jcfus Chrift and none o- 
sher* 2 Arc. 

Vcr.6. And I will dwell in the H tufe of the Lord for ever. 33? 

2 Are -nummenta , as the pillars and beams • fo there arc 
feveral truths and Articles of faich which ftrengthen and pre- 
fervc the Church. 

3. Are ft veral rooms : Some large, others narrow, fome 
high, others low : So in the Church there are Chnftians, fome 
of a larger ftature in grace , others of a narrower degree and 

4. Several ojfict rs : One above , another under • fo in the 
Church there are feveral perfons , fome above, and fome below, 
fome to teach and govern, and fome to be taught and govern- 

5. Several provifions for thofe of the houfliold , whether 
men or babes, foin the Church there are feveral gifts, fame 
for to edifie the ftrong Chriftian, others to edifie the weak Chri- 

6 Mafler and fervants : So in the ChuKh Chrift is the 
matter, and all the faithful arc his fcrvancs , He gives laws, and 
they give obedience. 

But I pafs over this alTertion , and proceed to the fecond. 

That we muft dwell in this houft of tht Lord for tvtr ( i. ) We mutt J well 
We muft perpetually joyn our felves with the people of God, in this boofc of 
in the publick worfhip and fervicc of God. cbc Lord for c " 

For the manner of worfhipping God it is two fold. vi*.. ci- vcr * 

private and perfonal • which is performed by our felves a- Not in private. 
lone , as private reading, meditating, praying , &c publick 
and common . which is done in the joint fociecy of Chriitians, Bn: ia pubiick, 
as publick preaching, praying,receiving of the Sacraments, and 
prailingof God by many. 

This was enjoyned in the old law, when the Jews had a fo- 
L 4 mn place defigned byGodhimfelf for publick worfhip/f/^fr 
tht Triks went up to worfiip y Vfo\. 1 2Z.\Evtn tht Tribes of tht 
Lird, unto the Ttftimonj of Ifratl, to givt thinks ttnto the n*mt 
of tht Lord. What u thtftgn that I fh/ll go up to tht hcuft of tht 
Lord, faid Hezekiah in lfa.38.22 And it was likewife in practice 
by the Apotilcs amongft whom we read of Pf/rr^that he went 
to the Temple at tht honr of prayer j and we read of meetings 
thefir/tdayof theweel^, and S. Paul impofethitas a charge, 
not toforfakecheaflemblingof our ftlvtt togtth.r^Hef. lo. 25. 

X x z And 

34-0 And I will dwellinthcHonfeof the Lord for ever. Vcr.& 

and reprovetb [\\ the Corinthians, not that they meet together, 
but only when it was for the worfe ^ I know it fatisfkb- fome if 
they do any thing at all for the private , and others that they 
joyn with the Catholick Church, but yet more is required , we 
muft joyn with fome particular Church in pa Wick wor- 
Reafons. ^he rea ^ ons whereof I conjecture may be th efe. 

Divine infticu- i* Divine InftitHtion : which hath appointed the Church ,boch ~ 
tion. for his publick wodhip and other publick rri2anes of good* 

Divine pre- 2# Divine prefencei It is true that God is prefent in all 
atnee. places, nor is he excluded from any, but in his publick ordinan- 

ces, there he is mod efpecially prefent , cJJi.2M8.20. where 
two or three are gathered together in my name , there am L in the 
midfiof them, See Acts 2.1,2. tfr. 4.31. 
Divine Glory. $,Divine Glory : Which is by this means publickly promoted 
and propagated j many convinced, many converted, many en- 
couraged, &c. 
Divine pro- 4. Divine promt fe : There hath God covenanted to pour 
mife. out histreafure, to anfwer wonderfully in righteoufnefs , Pfal. 

65 5. And to command the blejfing, Pfal 133.3. 
Our own pro- j. Q^r own profejfioni We are to diitinguifli our felres 
kfiiin. f rom unDe jievers, and to make publick notification of our faith: 

Though faith be private , yet the prof ejfun of it mufi be common 
and public^. 
Our mutual e- 6, Our mutual edification : We are to edifie one another, 
dification. Hekio. 24,25. But this cannot be without fociety,^. 

Vf? J - The firftufe of this (hall be to reprove thofe whoabftain or 
^Twho for- withdraw themfelves from the public^ places- of Q.ods worfhip : 
fok/thcAfom-Many are at home irnployed in worldly bufinefs or carnal. 
bjy. fports , when they ftiould be at the Congregation • they wil- 

lingly eftrange themfelves from the aflemblies of the Saints, 
and areferving the Deyilwhen they fhould be ferving God : 
Others proudly conjecture that they can receive as much good 
at home, by reading of a good Book, as they (hall by coming 
to hear the Word publickly taught them. Though fir ft their 
ftudy ( if it be ftrictly examined) is onely a pretence of doing 
fome private good. Secondly, They be generally mod remifs 
ia all family and private duties; Thirdly s Private performan- 

Ver.tf. And I will dwell in the Honfe oftheLerd fir ever. 341 

ccs muft fo be done, as with all , to make way fo , and to give 
way unto publick Ordinances. Fourthly^ Their example brings 
a prejudice on Gods publick worfhip, and ftrengthens others 
in a total neglect of Gods publick worfhip and fervice. Fifthly. 
And why are the publick Ordinances appointed ? Others con- 
fciencioufly pretend againft the publick aflemblies, becaufeof 
mixtures with evil men, and humane inftitutions, and Ordinan- 
ces which they imagine to be utterly incompatible with the di- 
vine Ordinances. To thefe much might be faid in a large way 
againft the many exceptions which they take and make, and the 
weak and erroneous grounds, upon which they build onely this 
for the prefent. 

1. The Church militant is mixt of good and bad. 

2. Though there be not anintrinfecal Unionof all , yet if 
there be a common profeilion of the fame faith , there is no 
complete reafon for a local , though there be for an affectio- 
nate feparation. 

3. Humane inftitutions are of two forts-, either prefcribing 
a direct and immediate worfliip,as they of Rome do for invoca- 
tion of J^/tff^adoration of the hoft, &c. Or directing about 
the worfhip of God • the which being indifferent in themfelves 
are not reafons fufficient for a publick reparation. 

4 Things introduced circa cu/tum^bout the worfhip of God, 
are either, 1. Simply evil, and manifeftly idolatrous, in fucli 
cafes we may feparace. 2. Doubtfully good, in fuch cafes 
Chriftians fhould itudioufly and humbly leek folid refolutions ' 
and ftill keep to the publick fociety . 

5. There is a double focietywith evil men, "Either in their 
particular a&.ons and wayes which are evil, this is no: to be 
done. ■" Or in their publick actons, as the prefenting of them- 
felves to the Ordinances • and this may be done, for though the 
men be evil, yet thole actions are duties common to evil men 
and g^oJ. I mull: not ceafemy duty becaufe an evil man pre- 
tends towards it. ,fc It it a g v e.tt mi/ery and cwfe to be dtb.ir* 
r.'dof the Society of Sii>its. It was Cams curfe to be driven 
from the face of the Lord, and to be a Vagabond. " Again , 
Separation from the Alterably of Saints is a ready way either to 
Ap^ltacy and Errors in Judgment,or Wickedneile in Life. See 
7/^.1023,25. The great hcrcticks (anciently,) wereunquiet 


341 dnd I will dwell in the bottfe of the Lord for ever. Ver.6 

fchifmaticks, they firft left the Society of Chriftians , and then 
impugned the truths of Chrift. " And Vehat hope of Society 
with Saints in heaven, When a Voluntary DereliUion of their So- 
ciety on earth ? if we will not be fellow- Chriftians ,fliall we ever 
be fellow-Citizens. 

But to thefe perfons I would prefeni thefe confiderations - 9 
By their voluntary abfenting of themfelves from the pubhck 
Ordinances, they do 

i. Deprive themfelves of chrift s Special pr fence : The Or- 
dinances are the very Arms of Chrift, by which he manifefts 
himfeif wonderfully in all his Offices. He hath not defigned 
them as vain and nominal Images, but as lively Oracles, and (in \ 
gular Conduits for grace and comfort. 

2. Deprive themfelves of all Afixifterial inftrutl ions : The 
Lord calls men to the work of the Miniftry^and by his good Spi- 
rit gives them gifts, and graces, and ailiftances for their work, 
which is to gather and convert fouls t and to build up and 
ftrengthen fouls, and to refrefti and comfort fouls, of all which 
the Church-decliners debar themfelves. 

3. Deprive themfelves of all Sacramental good : No marvel 
they go with fuch unbelieving hearts, with fuch cold afTe&iom, 
with fuch remifle graces,~who deny unto themfelves the Seal of 
the Almighty, the fight of the blood of Chrift, that fweet com- 
munion with him in the Sacrament. 

4. Deprive themfelves of the p ub lick good of publichjyorfhip : 
The prayers of the afiembly of the Saints are aliifonantia fuf- 
piria, like thofe of the Apoftles, they (hake heaven and earth . 
but as Peter faid to Simon Magus, Thou haft no part nor portion, 
fo we may fay to thefe, in all the (ingular good which is drawn 
down from God by puhlick worfhip, Thefe felf-fequeftrators 
have no part or portion. 

Ob), Indeed they who are detained by an immediate erTeft of 
divine Providence. 
. Sol. The good may run to them from the publkk Market , 

iT ?" b uc mc h as voluntarily detein themfelves from publick worfhip, 

forwardness * ^ ear » are *~ ar ^ rom P u blick bleffings. 

in attending But I hope better things of you, though I thus fpeak and my 
ispoa the pi*b- Exhortation to you fhall be this, That as amongft all the City, 
lickO.dinan- you have exfrejfed jour forWardneffe to the publick fvorjbip of 

Vcr.6. And I will dwell in the Hovje of the Lord for ever. 342 

Gcd % fo you would ftill continue in the fame. 

1. O the Ordinances ef God thej are precious things I they The O -Jinan- 
are the Oracles of God for Wifdom, Treafuresof God for Be-" 5 ^^" 
neHt, Chambers of prefence for Expreflion of favour -. The prcCi0USt in& * 
Ark (which was the publickteftimony of Gods prefence) was 

the glory of Ifracl. If God fhould fend a famine of the Word 
andfhut Upthefc publick places withpublick calamities t or but 
a while reft rain fome of you from them by perfonal ficknefles, I 
believe you would be like the fifliout of the water, and you 
would highly account of them then , and pant after the living 
God , and cry our with David, when /ball I appear before God? 
and confefle with him, Pfal.Sq.q. Blefed are thej thzt dwell in 
tkj boufe, thej will be fyill praifmg tree', and v. 10. A day in 
thy Courts i* better then a thottfand. There you have the nnfr 
excellent fociety, not only of men, but of Angels ■ not only of 
Angels, but alfoof the bleiTed Trinity, There you fpeakto 
God, and there God fpcaks to you ^ f^feph and Mnry found 
Chrift in the Temple. There you have the mofl excellent in- 
payment, a kind of heaven upon earth : The works ! not poor 
and carnal , but all of them heavenly and fpiritual • reading, 
preaching praying, blefling of God. There you difcern the 
mod excellent operations, counfels, directions, comforts, con- 
victions, &c. Onemanraifed from the dead by hearing the 
voice of Chrift , another man delivered from Satan by thac 
power of Chrift here made manifeft in weaknefs • another freed 
from fetters of unbelief, and like the Cripple healed, leaping 
for joy j fo a particular hearer enabled to believe, and in be- 
lieving to rejoice with joy unfpeakable; another cured of his 
pride, another of his hardnefle, (ins, temptations, impediments; 
doubts dilTolved and broken down ^ graces, comfort, ftrength 
diver fely and fwgularly imparted. 

2. 1 he very Sociation of our [elves with the people of God in To Aflbrftte 
fmUkkt m ifS*** influence* The weak Chriftian ( much in "f* p * P e ?" 
tears) keeps humility in the ftrong Chriftian. The ft^ng J of trSi U-* 
Chnftian(much in joy j ftrengthens the weak Chriftian in Faith tfuracc. 

and hope. What affections do we, as it were, impart to one a- 
ther > how we raife the hearts of each other to pray, to hear, to 
ling? we not only act our own parts but help others^and are by 
ihera interchangeably helped again , with wifdom , patience, 


344 And I will dw til in the Houfe of the lord for ever.Vcr.6 


PuWick An- 
swers are of 
moft power. 

courage, &c. and holy affe&ions. 
Our duties are 3. Our duties Are more ftrongly Efficacious in the publick 1 
more ftrongly ]f a fi n gj e p ra y cr ma y fo m uch with God, what will a band of 
prayers fan army of them) do ? a threefold cord , &c. when 
there is a common cry and agreement- when many Saints at 
once cry out, Father, pity us, fpare us for thy mercies fake, be 
our God, remember us for thy Names fake, &c. 

4. The ptiblick^*s4nfwers are of moft power : Private anfwers 
more fcrupled then the publick, and never fetkd by them ; now 
the Broad Seal comes to the Privy Seal, Even chafe comfortf 
which we found in private, and perhaps fufpe&ed, if yet we find 
the Lord in his publick Ordinances to feal them, they are more 
firm and fatisfying unto us. Now think of thefe things^ and 
for the time to come loofe no more Sermons, no more Sacra- 
ments , ifthoubelteveftthat the Lord hath appointed them, 
and is prefent with them. I befeech you then, (in not againft 
your own fouls, neglect them no more, but prize them more , 
make more ufe of them, leaft the Lord remove the Candle-flick, 
and depart with his Ordinances, and beftow them on a people 
which will fear him and improve them better. 

Now the Means to keep us clofe to the Ordinances in pub^ 
lick, are thefe, 

1. Humility of heart 1 The full foul defp'feth the honey- 
comb. Our needs are yet many, the earth needs the Sun every 
day. Oar veflels, though caft, are not fully finished ^ Grace 
is yet weak, and Corruptions too ftrong. A ad confider, 

2. The power of God in his Ordinances to caft down, to 
raife and build up. 

3. The Wifdom of God to prefcribe and continue them ; if 
he hath a tongue ftill to fpeak , we muft have ears ftill to 

But I haften to the third and laft Propofition , which is this, 

That ftngular mercies fhould lead us on to the moft Jingalar 
duties. Everlafting duties fhould attefcd everlafting mercies. [7 

rieTfhoulTlead ^^ dwell in the houfe of the Lord fyr ever.^ 
us on to fingu Thus was it with David elfewhere, Pfal. 1 1 6.8. Thou haft 
hx Duties. delivered my' foul from death, mine ejes from Mars, and my feet 
from falling (great mercies, many mercies) v 9. / mil Walk, 

Singular mer- 

Vct.6.Andi will dwell in the Houfe of the Lord for e,ver. 345 

before the Lord in the land ef the living. What's that? (.».) 
As long as I live I will ferve my good and merciful God • and 
therefore he geminates the words in Pfal. 1 6. Lord , truly I 
am thy ftrvant^ I am thy ftrvart ; Thine I am, and thine I will 
be. Thus was it alfo with Hcz.e\iah t Ifa.38.20. The Lord vat 
ready to fate me, therefore we Vpilt fmg my fongs to the ft ringed 
Inflrumtnts all the dayes of our life in the hou(e of the Lord. The 
man was lately at deaths door , but God recovered him and 
(hewed mercy on him : How doth he take the mercy ? why, 
to the houfe of God goes he, and there he will ferve the Lord, 
not for a fit,or a while, but all the daies of his life. But now when 
I fay, That mercies fhould lead on duties, or that conltant mer- 
cies fhould make us conftant fervants , I mean the AfTertion 

Whether the mercies be privative in deliverances, or Pop- Mercy, whether 
tive inbleflingof us • Spiritual to our Souls, or Ttmporal to? ri !* civccr 
our Bodies and eftates ; whether the one,or the other, or both, |^ JJr x52i£ 
all of them (hould lead on to Duty. ril 

1. With more tVatchfulnefs and Lxattnefs : The Righte- Leads to duty. 
ous God (hould have fervants , but the Bountiful God diligent With more 
fervants. Mercies (hould as it were trim up our duties, raife VVatch ^ ne ^ # 
us to more care and ftudy to pleafe the Lord, as the candle burns 

clearer after (huffing. 

2. With more AffeBionatenefs : The Holy God hath fer- with more Af- 
vants, but the Merciful God (hould have chearful fervants. Thefc&ionttcnc.s. 
Lock (hould turn more readily after Oiling, and the Heart be 

more hearty after Blefiings. We (hould ferve the Lord, with 
more delight and liberty of fpirit. (Like the green grafs after 

3 . With more Faithfulnefj : We (hould now fo Serve the with more 
Lord, that we will Serve none but the Lord • no fins, no times , Faithfulncfs. 
no perfons in any finful waves. 

4. With more Refolutenefs ,againfl: all fears, and threats.and With more 
troubles-, through good report and ill report, againft the ex- Reiolutenef* 
amples and pra&ifes of others as Jofbua^ and contempt of others 
asTXivu/. Wemuft ferve him in the heat of the day, who 

hath lookt upon us in the cool of the day. 

5. With more yigoroufnefr : After mercies we (honld ex* With more 
ertallour ftrength, go almoft beyond our felves • put out our v, £croufo*fo 

Y y very 

543 A'ndJ mil dwell in theHcufe of the Lord for ever. Ver.6» 

very belt of parts, and h;-arts to worfhip and glorifieGod In- 
differency is a grofi iniquity, after much mercy, and the dull fer- 
vant a is almoft a ltranger,and as no fervam. 
Wkh more 6« With more fruit fulnefs i Like tre^s watered in the faring-, 

fruiifuinefs. we ftould abound in the work of the Lord, doable our works 
where God hath trebled his mercies, ■:• feci e>:y, better 

induftry , better counfel , better aflfeftwua, better conventi- 
With more 7. With more ftedfaftnefs : Not ferve th;» Lord with une- 

ftedfiftaefs. ven ktt, nor yet with wearied feet,but keeping in, and keeping . 

on in the good way and work of God, all our 4 y& 
Reafons. oijtfl. But why conitant fervice after conltaut mercies? 

©u:y is the end SeL f Becaufe duty. U the end of mercy : See R*m. 2 4.' 
mci . Mercies are not given as Tombs to look on, but as chariots to 
carry us on with more delight in our journey to heaven. There 
is mercy With thee that thou maift be feared, faid David , PfaL 
More mercies 2. iJWore mercy is ft ill a new obligation to more obedience ; 
as a newobli- There is a difference twi^t the payment of a fervant , and the 
jatior.. encouragement of a Child • the fervant is paid hi* wages, and 

then there is an end of his fervice : The Chiid receivech a gift, 
and this cheers him up to obey his Father mare. We are bound 
in fervice to God all our lives ( till we are out of our time or Ap- 
prentifhips ) both for the abfolute authority he hath (till over 
us, as alfoforthe perpetual equity of his righteous will ; but 
betides thefe , there are Gods cords of love , the tokens of his 
affections which ought to inflame our hearts with anfwerable 
love, and that love will bring obedience with ic ^Mercies are 
Gods gifts, but yet they raife our dbts, 
Godis-so-to 3» God is to be honoured with his mercies : But when WC 

honoured with ferve him moft , we honour him beft . He doth not give his 
his mercies, mercies tous, to ferve cur felves or ©ur lulls, but for his ho- 
nour and our comfort, and encouragement. 
Wsmuftnve 4* Ws muft give an account for me -ciet received; The sc- 
an account for count will be heavy, if our fervice be bad ; you kaow what be- 
mercies. C ame of the fervant, who did not ufe the Talents. 

Vfe ii T ^is ^ erves ro re royea world of people , who prove idle 

Tenant* after all m^cits; mercies in the womb, in the birth^t 
the breft^in Childkoid^h ag? % in fUciitg^ in calling, in preferv* 


Ver.c5, Ar.dUvlll dwdlin fht Honfcof the Lerdfor ever* 344 

, in dt/ivering y in recovering, cVc. like the lfraclitcs who be- 
came the vileft people in the goodlied Canaan, or like the high 
mountains which the more exalted they are, the more barren 
commonly they are. What ufe made the Church anciently of 
all her p ofperity . ? when times grew morecafie andfafc,and 
rich, it became more proud and forgetful of God. Nay lee it 
inourfelves; our Iow,mean ftnitnedjdiltrefTed, fickdnyesare 
the times of higheft fcekings of God, and molt careful walking 
before him : The higher Sun, the lefTer fhacle -, The cold aire 
begets the purefi: whiteft Snow , the which is melted again 
by the heat of the Sun; fo &c. Our worfl times uiually 
arc our beft , for when plenty comes , when health comes, 
when more mercy comes , all our tears are dried up, Itrid- 
nefs of duty is laid afide, we hardly know that God is our pro- 
fperity, who knew our fouls and bodies, in the dayes of our acT- 

This,though I would fay to fuch who prove either hfs good, Oaninjnfwj 
or more wicked, after all Gods mercies : this unanfoer.bie. 3Vcre[st0 
nefs ' mcrtie5 ' 

1. Isan indecent thing : As incongruous, as Thar 40b s ill I; an indecent 
favoured kine in a plentiful pafture. Two things are very un- thing, 
becoming, one to fee men impudent in evil, when Gods hand 

of judgment is on them ^ another to fee them barren in Good, 
when Gods hand of me:cy is on them. 

2. It is a very finful thing: Doje thus requite the Lord I A very finful 
faith UMofes to thclfraelites, QMr.32. Of all Gns,.ingtAti- thin *' 
tude to God is one of the worft- and of all ingratitudes none like 

this , to be more finful where God hath been more merci- 

3 . Is a very dangerous thing : for what comes of it bur this, A vcry . &* n l z ' 
1. The comfort of former mercies is gone, 2. The bleiling T0US & ' 
on prefent mercies is removed, 3. And the hope of future 

mercies is funk up ? If after good mercies we turn evil fervants; 
mercies will leave us, and curies will follow us : If mercies make 
us nvt good fervants , judgments will find us out and punifh us 
for being evil. It is an argument that the perfon is not good, 
whor-i mercies make not better, and that God will draw off 
mercies, if we draw off our duties. 

Y y 2 Since 

348"" And I will dwell in the Hoxfe of the Lord for everJVcvf 

Vfe 2. 

Be humbled for 
former anfwe- 


For the time 
to come match 
Mercies ano> 
Duties toge- 

Often peruft 
the manifold 
Mercies of 

Gonfider your 
own unworthi- 
nefsof the 
Uaft Mercy. 

Since everlaitmg and continued mercies, (hould be attended 
with everlafting and continued duties ; let us Therefore be hum- 
bled for our former negletls y and unanfwtrab/enelfes^ ( O it 
fhould cut our hearts, that ever a good God fhould be flighted, 
that we have made no better ufe of Gods mercy and goodneiV 
towards us, ) 

And for the time to come let us ftrive To match Mercies and 
Duties together y that RighteoufnefTe and Peace may kiflfe each 
other, that our Obedience may afcend unto God, as hisBlef- 
fingsdodefcenduponus, that he may find us faithful Servants, 
as we find himftill to be a bountiful Mafteiv 

For the executing of this, let us 

I. Often and ferioufly with a diftinB furvey r prufe the 
manifold mercies of God unto us. Mercies lofe themfelves and 
make no impreffion when they are inconfiderately tumbled up, 
like Counters when jumbled together they make no fumme. As- 
it is with our (innes when we make them but a general notion 
(that w* are all finners) they never melt our hearts to forrow; 
io when the mercies of God are confufedly thought on (God 
hath been good tout) this affe&s not our hearts unto Obedience: 
butferioufly and articulately review Mercies,, fuch Mercies zo 
your Roddies, fuch to your Soul es. fuch to your Eftates, fuch 
to your Tradings, fuch to your Selves, fuch to your Children, 
Families, fuch a time the Lord delivered my Ship fromjirown- 
ing, my Houfe from burning, my Eftate from cofenage, 
my Body from ficknefle * my Life from death, &c. Now 
your hearts will be excited to fear and ferve that God 

2. Efpecially if (in the fecond place) you likewife admit of 
two other confederations, One is your ovm utter unworthinefs 
of the lea ft of all the Mercy and GoodnefTe which God hath, 
fhe wen unto you. That you have been a very (infill people 
and have deferved no Mercy, but Wrath and Hell fire, and all 
forts of Curfes, Curfes, continued Curfes ^ inftead of Mercies, 
continued Mercies •, that where you fee a Mercy, there you 
might have felt a Curfe. It is of the Lords Mercies that yve 
are not confumtd^vA notwithftanding our finfulnefle and un- 
worthineffc , jet his mercies Are renewed every morning , 


Ver.6. And 1 wilt dwell in the boufe ef the Lord for ever. 5 4^ 

Another is the Scope and intention of Mercies that they fweet- j hc 5 a „j 
ly befpeak us to better Obedience, as if every Mercy fhould fay i n: <ntiun i " 
thus^ Saith Eafe, Thou waft in grievous pain and greatly un- Mrrcy. 
fitted thereby to ferve God , I am now come from the 
Lord unto thee to remove that from thee that thou may ft 
enjoy thy felf better , and ferve thy God better : And 
fo faith Health , Thou waft lately in a dangerous condi- 
tion , the ftiadowes of death were upon thee , aud thou 
th^en wert neither fit to receive, nor able to do any good;" 
Now I am fent alfo from the Lord to deliver thee again 
into the land of the living; now make peace with Grd, 
now ftudy his Will more , now order thy heart and life 
better for his Glory ; So faith Plenty , In the dayes of 
penury thou waft filled with cares and feares , thou didit 
fpend thy time in worldly projects and vexations , now 
the Lord hath fent me to take off thofe fhackles, and 
fetters, and he hath bleffed thy Eftate that thou mighteft 
attend to his fervice without carking care , or vexing 
fear, &c. 

3. When mercies come, Strive (therefore) to love the God L "*« th? God 
cf thy mercies : Confider out of what a kind arTedion mercies °* lh y M:r < ics 
do fpring, and alfo what tender expreilions they are of them- 

fclves, and what peculiar furTrages, and helps and comforts 
they are to thy perfon and condition ; how proper thy fupplies 
are, how fad thy condition without them • and hereupon excite 
thy heart to a better love of this good God, and know this, 
that where the heart is raifed to a better love of God, it will be 
inablcd to a better fervice of God. No fervices are fo ready 
or fo eafie , or foexact,or fo itedfalt as thofe which love be- 

4. Asfoonas any New mercy comet Jinmhly adin^vled^e Hurrb'yse- 
hefjre the Lo-d, his c reeC]race^ and continued goodnefs untokn-w!;j£e the 
thee, and befeedi him by his Spirit of wifdm to tedch thy heart ( rt " c Gr!,cc of 
further by :t to Fid r tnd 'ervehim- put out your mercies as ■ " L ' c * 
y.«u do your monies prefently • mercies have the beltOperati- g { ^ #**<&* 
ons whiles fireftj in memory and feeling ; and therefore po:e thy 

felf a little, as thus, 

Wherein am I failing ? Wherein am I negligent > What fur- 
ther and other good concernes me to do? vVherein and how 


^47 And I will dwell in the Houfe of the Lord for ever.Vcr.6 

may I better the good which I do ? I find my heart, that it 
hath been too much fee on the World • Well, I will now fet it 
moJe on God • I find it morediftruftful, I will ftrivenowto 
trult the Lord more • too remifTe, I will ferve him moreexad- 
Jy ; too wandring, I will ferve him more uprightly. This is 
more mercy I mult be the better for it, I mutt live the better for 
it ^ it is unreafonable that God fliould lofe by his gifts,, or 
that I fliould not get him more Glory by his Bleffings. 


34 8 



A T T H. 


Vcrf. 29 ^rg ?ior two Sparrowes fold' for a 

Farthing ? and one of them jhall not fall on 

the ground without your Father. 
30. But the very hatres of your head y are 

5 1 . Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more Value 

then many Sparrowes. 

THE word? comprehend in them a comfort unto the 
Difciples (and with them to all the Church of 
Chriit) againlt all their Oppositions and Perfec- 
tions and miferablc Evils, drawen from the Pr 
denes of God. The Church is like a Shin at Sea, endangered 
byW , hue Divine Providence fits at the Helm, 

and powci \nd prefervesit. 

. Thar w ith the Apoitles might moft fear was the end- 
d bemndleft rage of kicked men who had power in fomc 
meafure anfwcrable to their malice. 

. But faith Chriit v. 28. Far them not ^vA heufcth two 
Arguments for this 3 

;. They 


The Doftrinc of Providence. 

Two Propor- 

DoEl. I. 

God hath a 
tending co all 
the Creatures 
and the things 
abouc them. 

1 . They can (at the word) but kill the body. That which 
is more precious, is more fafe ; They are not able to kill the 

2. Toothing can befal you without a Providence -, your Father 
is not idle, he is not afleep, he doth not forget you,nor your 
condition, he doth regard you, watch over you, and will order 
in a wife and gracious fwectnefle, every occurrence for his glory 
and your good, fo that not the leaft thing fhall befall you but he 
will direct and order it. 

Ob. We doubt of that, might they reply. 
SoL Nay do not, faith Chrift, What do you think of thofe 
filly Birds which fly Up and down, which nonejakes notice of, 
with any fingular eye, which one man hunts, and anothec 
man for his pleafure kills, yet not one of them falls to the 
ground but your Father orders it fo, permits it to be fo, it doth 
not come by an idle chance, but by his working Providence : 
and do you think that any evil, that any thing (hall befall you 
and your Father not t*ke notice of it ? and yout father not or- 
dering and governing of it : Nayif God hath an eye for them, 
be confident that he hath a lingular care for you • not onely the 
Moments, the great Moments of your Life and Death are or- 
dered by him, bur even' the H aires of your head are numbred 
(♦*.) he knowes them all he looks to them all ; and if to them, 
much more to your perfcns,and fafeties, and prefervations. 

I will not infilton many things, which the words can yield 
out, but draw onely hofe lllatons which may difcover unto us 
fomething of the < X)o8rinetf Divine Providence, viz. 

,1. That God hatha Providence extending to all the Crea* 
tures, and the t hings ab:ut them* 

2. That God hath in a more (tngular way, a [fecial Provi* 
dence over his church end peopte* 

That God hath a Providence extending it felf to all the Crea- 
tures, and the things abcut them • here in the Text, to the Spar- 
rowiS and to the fal/ixgof every one of themj and not only 
to the foules and bodies of his people* but alio- to the very 
• Haires of their head. Pfal 33.13. The Lord hoketh from 
heaven, he bebildeth all the fons of men. V. 1 4. From the place 
of his hniitation, he tookjeth upon dl the inhabitants of the earth, 
V.I J. He fa fhmeth their hearts alike, he cevjiderctb all their 


TheDotfrinc of Providence. 353 

worh. Read the 1 04. Pfalm and you fhall fee his Providence 
reaching from the upper chambers of heaven to the loweil . 

rooms and/oundatlons of the Earth, the Seas, the Mountains, v( ^Sw/*' # 
the Valleys, the Beafts, the Birds, the Sun, the Moon, and C(gn0t 
Man and all. 

For the Explication of this Point, let me inquire thefe parti- 
culars, vU. 

1. What this Extcnfive Providence is f 

2. How it may appear to be fo? 

3. Why it is fo? 

4. Some uferul Applications to our felves ? 

gutfi. 1. What that Providence is,which extends to all the 
Creatures? ^^ ' 

Sol. Drvine Providence is an external aMon of God whtrc- 
by he doth conferve and govern all things rifely, ho lily , >»/?(/» denVcwhat ^« ^ 
and powerfully to the admiration of his own glory . j s } 

Here divers things are to be obferved : 

1. That Providence is an Attion~\ God did not make the Ic is aa Aftioai 
world and fo leave it to its own inclinations, and wayes,and 

ends, but he followes that work of Creation, with the working 
influence of continual Providence^ he ftill looks upon it, and is 
dealing in it, and therefore faith Paul Act. 17. In him we live, 
and move, and have our Being. Some call this Atlion y the vir- 
tue of God, Visimpretfa fletlendo creaturas, a ftrong impref- 
fion which he makes upon the Creatures, both in refpect of its 
nature and operations ; and they who call it The will of God 
working effectually upon the Creature^ fay not amifTc. 

2. It is an External ts4ftion~] The actions of God arc j t j $ an cx «c- 
diftinguifhed (by Divines) into Internal and External. The M \ t $ion. 
Jr.ternal are fuch as refpect the perfons of the Trinity , as 

to Beget > and to be Begotten, and to Tweed y all'which are 
confined among themfelves. The External Atlions are fuch as 
look out to the World, and in which all the perfons of the Tri- 
nity have an equal concurrence. For though the eternal gene- 
ration of the Son, and proceiTion of the Holy Ghott be pro- 
per actions of the persons in Trinity being reftrained to one, 
and not common to them all , yet Creation and Providence 
which are converfant about the Creatures, are actions common 
to all the Trinity, every pcrfon partakes of them. 

Z z 3 Ic 

3 54 T&e Vottrine of Providence. 

Jcisanaffion 3 7 It is an aSion of God~] There is a kinde of Providence 
of God. which we afcribe to man, but this is weak, and ftiort , and re- 

ftrained • it is only of fome things which are about our felves, 
and within our own fphear, and there too, it is very halting and 
feeble. We cannot forefee all occurrences, nor determine any 
iflues,nor command and order as the nature and wayes of things 
do require. But properly and immediately Providence ap- 
pertains to God. For, i. None fo fit to govern the world 
as he who made it. 2* Nonefo fit to order and di red as he, 
who becaufe he did put in variety of inclinations in the diversi- 
ty of the Creatures , doth therefore know which way to turn 
them. 3. Nonefo fit to fuftain and teftrain, and bring things 
about, as he who hath infinite wifdom and power in his own 
hands, and therefore Providence is an attion of God. 
h extends to 4 v* exteH< k t0 A ^ things : ~] There is no created thing 
all tkinjs. whatfoever,over whichGod doth not extend a Providence, Pfal. 
1 13.6. He beholdeth the things both in heaven and inearth. 
2 Chr.16 9 Tke eyes of the Lord run through the "tohole earth. 
The mofl: excellent Creatures are fuftained by it, and the moft 
contemptible are not neglected. Not only the Angels in hea- 
ven, but the poor Men who are caft upon the dunghil • Not on- 
ly the glorious Stars, but the loweft piles of Grafs and the LiU 
lies; Not only that immortal Soul of man, but the very Hairs 
of his head are under a Providence : for, 1 . Providence is Co* 
extenfive with Creation, and therefore it is as large as heaven 
and earth, as the whole world. 2. Providence is Coextenfrve 
Vpith ^Divine knowledg ad extra ^ but known unto God are all 
kid work/ 9 A&*l$. 3. Every thing id kept in an Order and 
Harmony : Although to us there may be fome confufions, yet 
to God there is nodiforder, but all things wheel about and 
meerin thofe ends which he hath intended ," and unto which 
fee doth direct: them. There is not any one creature , not any 
one action of the creature, not any one change about the crea- 
ture, not any one occurrence, not any one iffue and event of 
any one aftion, but is under the powerful eye of Divine Provi- 
dence. Thofe creatures which feem to work in a more neccf- 
fary, and determinate, and natural way, and thofe which work 
in a more noble and arbitrary way, all of them are fuftained 9 
ordered and guided by God. Like a matter of a family whofe 


The Dotfrine of Providence. 355 

care extends to wife, to childrerf, to fervants, to the oxen, to 
the fhecp, to the houfe, to the land, to every thing about every 
one of thefe ; fo it is in the Providence of God over the greac 
family of heaven and earth. 

5. Confider the A&s of Providence,] which principally are The Acts of 
two Providence. 

i. Confervjttion Q The prefervation of things is the great Confemilon, 
finger of Divine Providence^ S. Paulc*\\% it the upholding of 
*ll things {\\tb.i.$.) by the word of his power. Job io.i2.Thcn 
haft granted me life and favour, and thy vifitation hath preferved 

Now the confervatton of things is twofold , viz* ei- 
ther, ; 

1 . Immediate, by the word of Gods power. 

2. CMtdiate, which is the holding of them up by means 
and wayes. He giveth meat to all fie fh, Pfal. 1 3 6.25. He pre- 
pareth rain for the earth, and maketh the grajfe to grow upon the 
mountains, and giveth to the beaft his food, and to the jong Ra- 
vens that cry, Plal.147.8,9. And for us his fervants, harken to 
Chrift, Mas. 6.30. // God fo death the grajfe of thefield y &c. fhall 
he not much more cloath yon, Oye of little faith ? And ver. 32. 
Tour heavenly Father kjioweth that you have need of all thefe 
things-, viz. of meat, drink, and cloth,*/, 3 1. The means of pre- 
fervation by providence arc fometimes more open, (.*.) Such 
as ftand before our eyes , as when we fee viduals to feed us, 
drink to refrefti as, friends to help us, power to refcuc us ; and 
fomctimes they are fecret, God will bring in a good, in a way 
that we could not think on, beyond our thoughts and imagi- 

Again, Things are preferved by Providence two wayes, 

1. Either in refpect of their Primitive *nd created Confi- 
dence, when they are individually kept fafc and found , not 
corrupted nor changed • thus Angels, Souls of men fab- 
Inactively confidered) and the Heavens are preferved by 

2. Orinrefpectof Succeflion and Propagation; which is a 
lengthening of things by anew Generation: Thourenr^eft 
t6t face nfthe larch. Thus God preferves mankind upon eartb, 
for though one Generation dies another comes j and thus he 

Zz 2 pre^ 

35* *~~Tl£e Doftrineef Providence. 

preserves his Church on the ear oh, though fome Members die,yec 
others live and furvive in their room. And thus he con^ 
ferves the feafons of Winter and Summer, of Spring and Au- 
tumn , in a Viciflitude or courfe of Revolution and Suo 

Gabcrnation. 2. G fiber nation:] This is an other part of Providence, by 
which the great God doth moderate all things even good and 
bad , fo that nothing falls out by chance or fortune,but accord- 
ing to his own couafel, both for place, and time, and manner, 
and event. 

This Government of things,is either, 

In keeping 1 , In keeping things in that Order wherein they were at the 

things in, their fi r fl. coated, PfaL 1 19.91 . All things continue according to thine 

° iaec ' Ordinances. ' 

In exciting the 2, In exciting the Inclinations of the creatures. He ftirred 

Inclinations ofup the heart of Lydia to hear, and He ftirred up the heart o£ 

the Creatures. Q rwtoc [ O g 00( j to his Church. 

Indircdinjall 3. In directing all Inclinations, motions and aftions for his 
Inclinations, own glory, as the Agent doch the Inftrument ; yea, though ic 
motioasand ^ e tne pcrfecutions of his fervants, Phi/. 1.12. 
* d n°Tor^ t In R^aining and hindring % by which he knits up the 

lmpUitioefi aftions of the Creatures which other wife chey would do -, as d* 
tjjicieniure* bimilech was retrained from touching ^Abrahams wife, Ltba*. 
prinuns.^ from touching of Jacob, the Angel from dellxoying the l/rae» 
In retraining /^/ Xj w hen he flew the firft born in ££r/>f,Exod. 12.23. And 
aadbindang. ^ Sunmjojb-aas time from running its courfe, andthe^ 
from burning the three children, and the Sea when the Ifraelites 
were to paffe through, and the infinite malice of the Divel, and 
the remainder of wrath (in evil men agiinft his Church) doth 
I Effe&lne S' # ^EjfeBing all good t There is no good, Spiritual, or 
afl eood. Moral, or Natural which attends upon us, but by a commiflion 
from Divine Providence. Haft thou friends , health , peace, 
plenty, fafety, any comfort ? God by his providence hath gi- 
ven all thofe day es unto thee •, Thefe are the children which the 
L*rd hath given, faid Jacob. 
In permitting 6. In Permitting of evil : , Nen fit aliqtiid , .nifi Omnipo* 
of evil. tens fieri velit A vel finendo fit fiat 9 vel iff* facie nio , faid 

Eucbirildd s^Muftfa, 

7 be DoHrine of Providence. 357 

Ob\ttt. It is a great queftion , efpecially about the evil of How fin falli 
fin, how that falls under Divine Providence? to which in a l J ncicr Pf0V1 * 
word thus, • dcncc " 

Sol. Things fall under Providence four wayef, 

1. Either in refped of their Caufation and Prod* El ion ,whcn Malum oriini' 
the effect comes from a producing and approving will of God , biu € ft> (? Tl - 
thus all good hath a reference to providence. 2. Or in refpeft 2^^£j*£ 9 
of Permijfton ; when God doth not effectually hinder the free [j M ', ^ ^J" ^ 
inclinations of the Creature : And thus (in is under Providence, & T ah one ejut 
not caufing, not approving, but permitting or fufTering , by quod ex ipfo eft. 
leaving the (inner to himfelfor to Satan. 3. Or in refpeft AUx.Aienhs. 
of Limitation: Thus alfo doth Providence deal about (ins ''P^^ 8 * 
Cen.io 6. 1 alfo "tilth-held thee. He checks and holds evil men, 

who elfe would put no bounds nor meafure to the vileft kind of 
{inning, confounding all order and being in the world. 4. fit' 
dicialiter deferendo : So 1 gave them up to their own hearts lufls, 
Plal 8r. 11,12. 

7. In Judging of evil men : Thus Providence appears many fa Judging of 
wayes, as in the defeating of their plots, infatuating their evil men. 
counfels, fmiting them with difeafes , turning their own plots 
upon their own hcads,ovcrthrowing them with variety of hid- 
den and exemplary deaths, yea, then when they think to do 
mod hurt to the Church of Chrift. 

6. Ladly, Confider the Qualities of Trovidence'] and they The Q^'Mei 
are four- vU. of Providence. 

i. mfdom:~\ For God doth all this in fingular Wifdom. WKdom, 
As he made the world, fo he governs it by Wifdom. Now the 
Wifdom of Providence is manifold, 1 . In the fitting of Means, 
2- In the hitting of Timet ', 3. In leading out an intended Ijfug 
through difficulties anci improbabilities , 4. In bringing every 
thing to its befi End. 

2. Holinefs;~\ God doth moderate, reftrain, gdde, furTer,HolincrTe. 
deal in every thing after a mod Holy manner , He is holy i n all 

hid ftayes.You multdiftinguifti'twixt what man doth and what 

God doth. Man doth fin but God doth not,his providence a- £ l J™ Sun „ on 

bout fin is good arid holy, though the iinic felfbev.leand * 


3. Juftice Q Gods Providence doth fo order things andjafticc 
events, it brings matters about fo, chat no man hath rcafon to 


358 Ihc Dottrine of Providence. 

aceufe God or complain of him. If we could pry into the fe« 
crct reafons of things, or view out the lingular ends which 
God hath in his eye, we would in all the contrarieties of things 
fit down and admire the admirable proceedings of his Juftice. 
If the Church be affli&ed, if the enemies profper, if good things 
ftand off, if evil things ftick clofe, if an iflfue will not yet be, yet 
God is juft in all thefe, though the wicked be not prefently pu« 
niftied, nor the Church delivered, 

Pawcr# 4 * ? 07 * er Q ^ ow can a '* tnc Creatures be upheld but by 

power ? and how can the Oppofkions of the Divel and his In- 
ftruments be limited and defeated, but by power ? and how can 
helps come in in the times of diftrefle, bur by power } how can 
deliverance break in to the Church againft all hope , but by 
power? When we fee great matters done by weak means, and 
God foraetiraes working ftrange erTerfb without means , and fo 
wonderfully turning about the hearts of men,&c. This declares, 
That there goes a power with Providence. 

How it appears £)uefi. 2. How may it appear that there isfuch aProvi- 

VS.'* ' de "" ? 

The Scripture Sol. 1. S 'cripture pleats it all over : When you read of any 

clears it. good which God brought, any evil which he prevented, any 

occurrence which fell juft as he foretold, any watching over a 

nation or perfon, any fupportings, any comfortings,and helps, 

and deliverances, any friends ftirred up to (hew kindnefle, any 

railing out of obfeure conditions to unexpected greatnefle, any 

prefervations,&c.all thefe fay exprefly there isaProvidence,thac 

doubtleiTe there is a God who hath regard t© the works of his 

hands, doubtleffe there is a God who hath an eye to this world. 

Effcds and If- 2. ijfeft: and Ijfues do notflie out of (econd canfes aecording t* 

fues do noc fly their intention and defire ; therefore there is a Providence. 

ootoffecond There is that laboureth night and day, who beats his braines, 

into thdr breaks ms fle8 P> watcheth the advantages of enriching his eftate, 

intention, yet he ca nnot multiply and enrich himfelf: It is in vain to rife 

early ^ and to g-, to bed Lte , except the Lord comes in with the 

blefling of his Providence. Thou haft the felf-fame conftituti- 

on, the fame air, r he fame diet, the fame recreations , the fame 

outward comforts in ^llrefpects as another, yet.cloaths do not 

warm thee , food doth not nourifh thee as the other ; Why 2 

becaufe Divine Providence gives out ic felf in the one, and 


The Dcttrinc of Providence. 359 

holds in the blefling from the other - y Therefore, faith Solomon , 
the race u not to theftyift, nor the battel to the ftr ng, cfrc. but 
it is Gods Providence which cafteth in the effect. You fliall 
fee many devices in the heart of a man, and yet none of them 
do ftand - y this way I may have it, or that way, I doubt not,yet 
Cod brings the effed , neither the one nor the other way, but 
a third which we could not think on. 

3. Things are brought about even then, when yve judge no Things arc 
probabitity, nay, an utter Improbability in ref peel of [econd caufes, : ° u * J* bouc 
therefore there is an adive and working providence. ^Ap^no probability 
is to preferve Egypt alive, and his fathers heufe alive j but he in refped of 
is laii hold on by his brethren, caft into the pit, took out, and i< c <>nd caufes. 
fold to the Midianites, clapt in the prifon at Egypt, andac 
length fre«d out of all to bz a Prince and Ruler ,Gen.^$ 5. God 
did fend me before yen to preferve life. 50 :o. Te thought evil 
again ft- me, but God meant it unto good ', to bring to pjjfe as it is 
this day, tofave much people alive. 'David is to be a King, 
Saul throws his Javelin at him, fends men to kill him, envi- 
rons him about the Mountains, banifheth him his Country, yet 
at length the Crown is feton Davia's head. Ifrael is promi- 
fed a deliverance, Pharaoh deals craftily with them, impofeth 
harder bondage, and made them to ferve with greater rigor,yec 
Cod did then fetch them out. 

4. Jfthtre be a God, then there muff be a Providence • forrhcreis aG*J, 
God is the firft caufe, and that is abfolutely moft a dive , and therefore there 
all fecund caufes depend, for being and operation , upon the "! uft bc a Pro< 
firft. Nothing can move or preferve it felf, by it felf , vldcncc * 

but he who gives motion and Prefervation to all befides hin> 
felf. ( 

5. The tranflation of Kingdomes , the regards and puni/h- Th: rnn(h:i- 
ments of men on earth ; the changes about our conditions y fiejv on ° ( ^ [n l' 
clearly that there U a providence. domes, rewards 

6. Laftly, L*kfn the very attributes of God-, is he not moft mcmstSIewa 
wife, moft juft , moft merciful , moft powerful ; then how providence, 
can things be ncgleded, how can they happen by chance, 

ffr' c% The Attributes 

Ob). But againlt all this, it may be objected • it feems there °J Q f\ provc 
is no fuch providence , which doth order and preferve , and li- i^e viiVft r"a-" 
mit^nd puqiftl , for we fee that. J. The Vtleji ftnners go **-ners p urpu- 

pHnipjtd^\tixti % 

3 to The Dotfrine of Provider) ce. 

punifhed , and 2. Profper in their proceedings. 3. The befi 
men to be oppre fed with many wants, affliftions^erfecutionSjand 
to fet down with the worfe. 
Anfwercd. i. Sol. To the firft I anfwer ? 

The prefent 1. That the immediate and prefent execution of vengeance 

execution of U p 0n evil doers, is not afure Rule to deny a providence : God 
ycn«eanqc,no j s g rac i us,ancl patient, and long-fuffering, even towards thofe 
n7ap"ovV who defpifethe riches of his forbearance, 
dencc. 2. Gods providence appears either in the prefent , or elfe in the 

Gods provi- fubftqent punifbing of finner s : If that evil men might go on 
dence appears f or ever unpunifhed , then there were not a providence ^ but 
cither in the though a [inner do evil an hundred times, and his dajes be pro* 
fequcnt punifh- longed, jet it fhdl not be Well with the wicked -, neither fhallhe 
in* of litintrs. prolong his dajes, which are as a Jhadow , becaufe he feareth not 
Ecdg.i*. before God, Andlfa 6>,20. The finner being an 100 years old 
(hall be accurfed : So 1 Tim.5 24. Seme mens fins are open before 
hand, and fome, they follow after: Cod doth fometimes take 
the (inner in the a&ing of his fins •, fometimes divers years af- 
ter, when he hath filled up the meafureof his fin, fometimes 
he refervei the wicked for the great day of wrath : There is 
a fure punifliment , though not alwayes a prefent punifliment 
for every finner. 
There ire di- 3 .There are divers forts ofpunifhment -.Some arc apparent and 
vers forts of pu- obvious, which are like ftrokeson the (boulders v a man may fee 
mtoments. t ^ &t q 0( j h atn reW arded the proud.according to their pride,and 
the finner,acording to his fin in fome notable difgr*ce>or difeafe, 
or curfe^ thers are invifihle and fecret,like a wound in the hidden 
parts:nowGod doth ufually bring on all vile finners,either fomc 
vifible,or elfe(which is the greater kind of punifliment) fome in- 
ward and invifible wrath,by giving them up to reprobate minds, 
feared confcienceSjim penitent hearts, or by (Irking their confer- 
ences with fad horrour and accufations, which rack and perplex 
Evil men do them as hell it felf. 

Answered. ^° tne &cond > That **& men ^° P r °fp^ : So I anfwer,Nei- 

God will mt|- ther doth that conclude againft a divine providence, for as much 

nifie his bounty as 

in micward j § g J w ;// magnifie his bounty in outward things, even to the 

the^Y? l ° w ' c tedh though they be wicked , yexthey are creatures too • 
men"" * anc * therefore he makes his Sun to rife upon the un juft, as well as 


The Dottrine of Providence. 3 6 1 

the juft, and the rain doth drop on both of thcm,but then God 
doth not beftow thefe things on them, to maintain and reward 
their finning.but to uphold their being. 

2. It u a wife frovider.ee that evil men havefo much of cut- It it a wife pro 
vard things, becaufe nonefhould cfteemthefe outward things vidence that e- 
to be the higheft and chiefeft good. That cannot be the belt ^™° f JJJ 
good which the word people may have. ward thing'. 

3. It had been better for them to have wanted them , for Dintur b*ni> nc 
Gods bounty to them, and their abufe of that bounty ,encreaf- £"**«' ■»*'*> 
eth a fiercer damnation. At the belt, their great eftate is decay- d %™Xni, 
ing Ike a flower and the grafs, Pfal. 37.1,2. And becaufe they iinm bonis € ' t 
have rafted fo liberally of Gods kindnefs , and baveimployedguMnu futen- 
it onely againft Gods glory, their felicity (hall be fhort b\xrjr(umm*boni. 
their raifery (hall be endlefs. Au *' 

3 . Sol. To the third j That good men are opprefjed with ma- Good men are 
»j wants, I anfwer. °PP rcffcd VNiih 

1. No good man ever wanted that which was good for him : ^ wc "J mS ' 

I may want a thing which is good, but not which is good for me; Nogo0£ i * maR 
for Godwill withhold no good thing from t hem that walh^ «/>- e ver wan:cd 
rightly, Pfal. 84. 1 1. The goodnefs of thingsto me confifts what was ;ood 
inconvenieney and fait able nefs. Meat is good, but not to thefor b ^. 
weak and fick ftomack, becaufe it is not now convenient . liber- 
ty is not alwayes good for a good man, nor yet health, &c. ma- 
rry things may be good to fome good people, which are not aU 
wayes good to every good man,and therefore it is not want. 

2. The goodnefs of an eftate doth notfionfiftinthe *£*;w/<*tff f The gocrinefs 
of goods , but in the contentment of the mind : That man ot '" ' cftace . 
hath a good eftate who harh a contented heart with a little por-"^,/^ '"„ 
tion ; A good ftomack and a clear houfe, and a little victuals , - m content- 
is far better then a large table, and a dark chamber , and a fick ment. 

heart • a good man hath no want , fo long as his confeience is 
clear, and Gods loving favour ferves in, though it be but a bitt 
of bread. 

3. Nay, and again; If you will judge of Providence by Riches and 
abundance, then you may fee Riches and (Joodneffe meet toge-l°°^ % *° 
ther as well as Riches and Wickednefle • and Honour and™"*^™^ 
GoodnefTe as well as Honour and Wickednefle, &c. Abraham m C 

was as wealthy as moft in his time, and he was behind none for 
Faith and Obedience : Davi.l had the Crown on his head, and 

A a a tie 

^62 The Dottrimof Providence. 

the Scepter in his hand: And Srfomn, none came neerhim 
for Riches, and State, and Wifdom. We do not fee every 
Wicked man mighty in his E(tace,nor every Good man low and 
poor -, nay if we (hould fee the one agiinlt the other, for Jonc 
Good man whofe Eftate is mean, you have thoufmds of Evil 
men whofe Conditions are Beggerly. 
f ,, . r 4. What lh)xldws fttnd Hpon great Ejlat^s here^ when God 

led on them a hath fet led an high inherit %nce abov?. If a fuffkiency for food 
hijhEftitea- and raiment for thee and thine, andweh that the blood of 
bsveandfo Chrift, and precioumefleof promifes, and theconfolations of 
£ ft^ n °h * r€ac the Spirit, and aflurance of heaven cannot prove a liberal Pro- 
belo r? CfC vidence into thee, then get more faith to know the wayes and 
expreftions of a good Providence, Pfal.31.19 o how great is 
thy Goodneffe which thou haft laid up for them that fear 
thee, dec. 

Ob. But they are affi'tded, none the like, and perfecutedof 
all men, where is now a Providence ? 

Sol. I fhall referve this to the next Proportion about ths 
Ghnrch, and there it (hall evidently appear, that of all ether 
things, the afflidions and troubles of the Church do moil An- 
gularly prove a Divine Providence. 
The next Proportion is this, vi** 
t Doc°l.%. That God hath in a more fibular way a fpecUl providence 

God hath in a over his Church and people. The Text is clear for it, The ve*y 
more fingular ^ aires of your head are a'l numbred, (not one of them which is 

froWdwice R0C un ^ r § uar - anc * P rote & ion ) and je are of more value 
over his then many fp arrives ( i.) your Father hath a regard far more 
Church and intimate and affectionate towards you then them. 
S^k- This may appear if you confider fome more lingular expref- 

{ions in the Scripture, which do open a more lingular kind of 
Providence, Zach.2.8 He that touchethjou,toHcheth the apple 
of mine eye. There is not a part of the body which we defend 
more then the eye, and not one part in the eye of which we 
are more vigilant then the app!eof the eye. that middle poinr, 
the principal organ of feeing • now God profeffeth himfeif to 
be as fenfible of his Church, to have as tender a regard to his- 
people as any man can to fecure that choice and principal pare 
<Df his eye, lf.49.15. Can a woman forget her fucking child 
that fhefhwld not have compajjion on the [on of htr womb ?yea 


The Votfrine of Providence. 

they may forget , yet will net 1 frgtt thie. Cbfervc the pafla- 
ge?of either, the Parents, the Mother exprefleth the rroft en- 
larged, ar.d nc-er tei.dernc ffe, and though (he fhewesa care over 
all the fervants, yet the choicer is to her children, and though 
there fcc a greater height of care for children then fervants, ) ct 
it is more to a child other own wemb then to an annexed child, 
and of all the children of her wemb, fhe doth exprefTe the 
bowels of tendcrnelTe to that child which is fucking at her breft, 
and there again mo ft to a fon. So though God doth by his 
general Providence, eye, obferve, difpofe, bring in, for all the 
creatures of the world, yet in a more fpecial and lingular way 
for his own Children and Church, and therefore he addes in 
that place v. 16. Behold I have graven thee upon the palmes of 
my hands, thy walls are continually before me. Ifa.40. 11. He 
/ball feed his flnc\ like a Jhepherd, he fhall gather the lambs 
•with his armes, and carry them in his bofom, and /ball gently 
lead thofe that are with young. God hath a double flock, A 
gneat flocl^ in refpetl of Creation, and a little flock, in refpeel of 
Eleilion, although he looks on both, yet here is his principal 
care •, and look as the Shepherd with a diftinguifliingeye, and 
tendernefle, refpefts the tender Iambs,e>f . fo doth God bfo t &c* 
Therefore his people are called his jewels. Mai. 3. 17. In th*t 
day that I make up my Jewells, &c. It is true that an intelligent 
houfholder doth not neglett the courfeft VefTcls, nor except 
the meaneft glaffe, but of all the houfhold goods under his 
pofTciTion and care , there are none of them locked up with 
fuch narrow and fure fafety as the precious jewels , fo it is in 
Gods care of his jewels.Ifa. 27.3./ the Lord do keep it, I will wa- 
ter it every moment , lefi any hurt it, I Vrill kvp it night and 

The Ark. was a type of the Church, which was all, and al- 
wayes covered with iVmgs of Cherubims intimating the Divine 
protection. Hence it is that Gods eyes are {aid to be over the 
right ecus ( i.J He hath an efpecial watcbfulnefle for them : and 
the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even f or ever, PftLilf.% 
as the mountains are round about Hierufalem, and he is called 
the Covert , the Refuge , the Defence , the Rocl^ , the 
Shield , the Salvation , the High Tower , the deliverer 
of his people. Now tha.c God hath a fecial Providence 

A a a 2 over 


the BoBrint of Providence, 

This fpecial 
Providence ap- 

In the Anions 
of Providence 
exercifed about 
the Church. 
Impcdition or 
hinderance of 
evil intended 
againft them. 






over his people may appear thus: 

Firft, If you confider the Attions of Providence, you (hall 
fee jthem in a more lingular way exercifed about the Church, I 
Will inftance in fome, 

I. Impedition or hinder ance , which is the ftaving off of 
evil; though evil be intended againft the Church, though it be 
contrived with the moft fubtile policy, though it be armed with 
the moft terrible power, though it be ready to call: forth it felf 
like an over-flowing flood, yet God hath interpofed, and he 
bath hindered and prevented the fame, he hath brought them as 
a bird out of the fnare, and pulled" them as a fire-brand out of 
the fire. When that Pharaoh fhaped out the methods of ruine 
for the Ifraelites by vexing out their lives with cruel bondage, 
and by deftroyiag their lives in their pofterity, yet God did 
hinderthe laft intention in the preferving of children. When 
Achitcfhel gave moft horrible and pernicious counfel to Abfa- 
lom immediately to aflault his father, and his weak and faint 
followers, God did interpofe, and did crofTc and turn afide th|t 
intention, by giving more acceptation to the advice of HftjMff 
When Pfaman had plotted the death of the femfi nation, 
meerly from a difrefped from one poor LMordicai.when he had 
raifedup the Gallowes to hang him, and got the commands 
fealed to defrroy the reft, yet God hindered all, hedafticd the 
project and wonderoufly prefei ved all of them; the King can- 
not deep and he muft read in the book of Chronicles, and then 
hemuft pitch on that leaf which recorded OWordecat's. fide- 
lity, and foftirup the heart of the King to honour him, and 
favethereftof ihefewes. All their intentions and plots are 
but like a (hip trimmed and ready to launch, but a contrary 
windbindes up the motion. When Saul had often purfued 
David like a Partridge on the Mountains , and had at length 
invironed and incircled him, that there was noway to efcape, 
yet God did hinder this, by calling JW back again, ThePhi** 
lifiims invade the land. When Sennacherib came againft Ph» 
z, kjah and threatens with a biafphemous infolency to fwallow. 
him and his people up though God him felf (hould fet in to his 
refcue^ He did put a hook into his noftrjlls, turned him home, 
again, and hindred his proud intentions and threats. So true is 
diatof the Prophet, JfaiahS.?. AJfeciate jour felvej together, 

The Dettrlnt of Providence. 365 

O yt people, and ye flail be broken in pieces -, gird jour fehi 
and ye flail be broken in pieces. V. 10. Tak* counf el together, 
and it flail come to nonght ; fpeal^ the word, and it flail not 
ftandforGod is with tu : and Job 5.12. He difappointeth the 
devices of the crafty, fo that their hands cannot perform their 
enterprise. 1 3. He taketh the wife in their own traftimffe, and + 
the counfel of thefroward is carried headlong. 15. He faveth 
the poor from the f word, from their month, and from the hand of 
the mighty. 

2. TermifpM or fuferance. If God doth permit any mi- PcrmifTion or 
ferable evils, if he doth not totally reftrain the operations and ruf p r, £ ce ° f ** 
intentions of wicked men , but they do exercife the poyfon and Jj^JJ cta 
fcourge of their malice upon the Church , yet God doth here y^ be doch 
alfo nngularly prefenthimfelf. exfrafebi* 

la Moderating that boundleffe rage : He fets upon the power Providence 
of rhe mighty, and binds the wrath of thecrueliAs he bounds j° n ward *. jhcD ?- J 
the raging waves of the fea, thus farreftiallye go, and no chc of™,"' 
further; (0 doth he flint the pride of evil men, as he did thencmics. 
infolent defire of the Devil againft fob 1.12. Behold all that he 
hath U in'thj power, only upon himfelf put not forth thine hand, 

In qualifying external troubles with internal comforts. In qualifying 
Though the body fmarts, yet the confeience fmiles • though external crou- 
the eftate be peeled, yet the foul is cheered • when Paul was blcs w^h inter- 
neer pulling in pieces, lAtlszi.io. and brought into the nl com orts ' 
Caftle, V.I I. The night following The Lord flood by him, and 
faid,beof good" cheer Paul, &c. 2 Tim.4.17. Notwithstand- 
ing the Lord flood with me, and ftrengthned me. When wicked 
men do furTer, they furTer all over, they fuffer within, as well as 
without • like perlons in a Feaver , extremely fcorch'J with 
heat, notonelyinthe viiible and flefhy pares, but in the fecrec 
fpirits and humours. But though a ftorm be upon good men 
without, they have a calm within j like a m.in in a Caftle, in 
the inward rooms of which all is quiet and ftill, though the 
bluftring winds do beat upon the outward fuperficies : If. 25 .4. 
Thou haft l een .< ft'ength to the poor, a fhrenq^th to the needy in 
his diftreffe, a refuge from the ftorm, a fladjw from the heat, 
when the blafi of the terrible one is as a ftorm againft the in converting] 
Wall. clieir miltfable 

la converting their mi fey able evils to [piritH*l wd: That cvi1, cofpirim- 

$6y The Voclrine of Providence. 

all tbe rage of evil men (hall be but as poifon tempered by the 
skilful and tender Phyfitian, not to be death but to be phyfick* 
and all the blufterings of them, fhall be but as the Wind to the 
Wheat, clearing it more of the chaff; or as fire to the gold 
purging it more from the drofle. Their repentance and for- 
_ row, and meeknefle, and patience , and faith, and zeal, and 
heavenly-mindednefle, and love of Chrift and his truth, (hall 
fpread with more purity, and beauty, like the Starres, with 
more glory in the darkeft nights. 

3. Trefervation : Though God doth preferve man and 
Pcsfenrlon. y e afi^kl $6 6. Yet there is a more lingular degree for the 
Church then for others, in which refpeft of comparifon Elihu 
faith, fob $6 6. He prefer veth net the life of thewicksd, and 
God is faid to Knew them afarreeff, and To caft them cff t 
and To hide him f elf from them , and To rejeil them. But 
David faitlvof the righteous, P/4/.34.10. The young lions do 
lackland fuffer hunger, but t hey < that feekjhe Lord fhall Want no 
gosd thing. Not that there is no preservation of the wicked,(for 
the continuation of their being, depends upon prefervation ^ 
but that it isHOtinfuch a lingular way, as that which refpefts 
the Church •, Noah hath an Ark when the reft perifhed : hence 
thofe phrafes Pfal. 3 1.23. The Lord preferveth the faithful. 
2 Sam. 8 6. The Lord preferved David -whither foever he went. 
Gen.48.i5. God (faid f acob to fojepb) Which fed me all my 
lifelong unto this day. ]6. The zAngel vehch redeemed me 
from all evil, &c. He is faid to preferve the Life of the Saints. 
Pfal 41.2. And the rv ayes of his Saint s, Prov.2.8 and the Souls 
of his Saints, pfal. 1 2 1 .8 . and the fodies of his Saints, 2 Thef. 
5.23. 2Tiin. 4. 17. / was delivered out of the mouth of the 
lion. 18. And the Lord fhall deliver me from every evil works 
andprefrveme unto his heavenly kingdom. Hence it is that 
God is called the keeper of lfratl , The Lord is thy keeper y 
Pfal . 1 2 1 . 5 , The- Lord ts t hy Jhade upon t hy right hand. 6. The 
Sun fiall not fmite thee by day, nor the Moon by night. 7. The 
Lord fhall preferve thee from all evil. Pfal. 31. 20. Thou 
(halt hide them in the fecret of thy pre fence from the pride 
of man , thou {halt k?ep them fecretly in a pavilion from the 
ftrifeof tongues : fee a notable place //rf.27.3. Nay he is faid 
to keep them as theapple of his eye, Pfal. 178. fo Pfal.S4.11. 


The Doctrine of Providence. 366 

The Lord Cjod if a Sun and a Shield •, the Lord will give grace 

and glory ^ no good thing Will ht with-hold from thtm that walk 


' 2. Jf you confider the Me am and tVayes which God hath ufed ConGder the 

for his C :h, you mull: confeffe that his Providence is Sin- Means aid 

gular. The method of Providence is here fpecial. ObfervcW«y« wbich 
*, Goihathufci 

1. God can do g'tat good to hit Church and people by weaken can do 
Afeant : He can ftrengihen a fe^v to overchrow a many • you great food for 
remember the ftory of c f >u m, that he with 300 men chafed the his Church by 
Midianites, who were as tie Sand of the Sea, Judg.j.j. So WcakMcans/ 
2 Chron. 14.9- There came out againft A fa an hoft of a thoufand 
thoujand y and three hundred chariots : v. 1 1 . And A f aerie d uno 

the Lord hh God, and f aid, Lord, it is nothing with thee to help , 
whether With many . or with them that have no power ; help us , 
O Lord our God , for we refi on thee ( and in thy 2{jme we go a- 
gain ft this multitude : O Lord , thou a*t our God , let not man 
prevail againft thee, v. 12. So the Lord fmote the Ethiopians be- 
fore Afa s and before Judah y and the Ethiopians fled. 

2. He hath done great good for his people by ft range Means, And by Grange 
many times he hath put but a conceit , an alarum in the fancies M:ans - 

of the enemies of his people and they have fled, as in 2 Kin.j 6 
The Lord had made th.> hoft of the Syrians to hear a noife of Cha- 
riots^ and a noife ofhorfes, and they prefently conceit ir, that the 
King of Ifrael had hired the Kings of the Hittites, and of the 
Eiypti.tns ; and therefore they arofe and fled for their lives, V.J. 
When the Ifraelius came to the Se.i, the Red Sea, and the E- 
gyp-ians did purlue them. God brake open a Itrange means for 
their deliverance, he did cleave the Sea afunder, and command- 
ed it to ftand on heaps til! his people were all parted over. When 
Eliahu/2* in the Wikfcroeffc, far enough from the market 
or t'ieft:ll«,GoJ fends an Ahnoner,even a Riven to feed him. 

3. He hath done great good sgainfl Mews, when in proba- A.aJ againft 
bility they we -: cafl • dable mine, yet God huh ^ l ans " 
c»me in and helped. When Dttriel was call into the dena- 

mong the Lions, yet Divine Providence fecured and preferved 
him, in fufpen Jing and retraining the iierceneffe of them. So 
for the three Children , the fire is bound up that it could not 
fcorch or hurt them. 

4. He 

368 The DoBrlne pf Providence. 

And without 4. He hath done great good Without any Means. He hatfi 
any Means, put forth his Almighty hand and hath faved when there was 
none to deliver. Not by wight , or by peWer , but by my Spirit , 
faith the Lord of hofts, Zach.4 6. When there hath been no 
fenfe or rational conceits how things fhould be brought about, 
yet he hath done it. 
GonfUer the ' 3. Confider the fruits of Pro vidence, the C hurch hath more 
fruits of Pro- fp Cc j a i teftimonies herein then any people; Cod hath provi- 
vidence., ded better things for them then others : They have Chrift in 
the Ship, and Grace in the Heart, and Peace in the Confidence, 
and fuch a favoury bleffing with every blefling,that even the lit- 
tle Which the righteous hath >i$ far better then the revenues of many 
wkW. The eftatc of a wicked man may be larger, but that of 
the good man is better : The Quantity on his part may be 
greater,but the Quality of this mans condition is fweeter. Jt is 
mercy all over.lt is zBlefpng without aCurfe,andzPortion with- 
ouzSorrow. So that Divine Providence is more choice to the 
Church then others in all forts of things ^ in Spirituals there is 
no comparifon, and in Temporals,to the Charc^all good isfca- 
foncd and fweetned ^ but to others, either they find or put a 
curfe and fowrnefs into it. 
Confider the 4- ^ Y ou confider the I^ues of all Occurrences, this manifefts 
Iffues of all a Singularity of Providence. That every thing (hould ftiil fall 
Occurrences- out for good, whatfoever tbeeftatebe, yet it (hall be good; 
whatfoever the change be, yet it fhallbegood: though one 
eftate be oppofite to another, and one change to another , yet 
each of them (hall prove in the event for good-, *Att things 
/hall Wor ^together for good to them that love god, Rom.828^ 
Divine Providence doth, as it were, compact all the operations 
of fecond Caufes. He doth fo admirably temper, and con:-; 
mand, and dire& them, that though they be like feveral Rivers, 
one flowing this way, aaother that, yet all of them Center in 
the Ocean. So tnough the intentions of agents be feveral, and 
their practifes oppofite, and occurrences various to a perfon and 
to his condition, yet God orders all, not only for his glory, but 
for the particular good of a perfon or Church, When the 
Church hath rode it out in blood , a (hip upon a fea of blood , 
when it hath been blazing at the (take, when it hath been tor- 
tured in the prifon, yet all thefe have been additions, improve- 

The Dottrint of Providence. 1,69 

merits, advantages to the Church. When God doth bring an 
arHidiontotheeftate ofhisfervants, when he doth exchange 
their tempers, when he drawes back their outward comforts in 
the neareft relations, when he doth deny them fixhor fucha 
good, when he doth fufpend a good which they may and do 
defire •, yet all , whatfoever the occurrerces may be, defcends 
at length like a cloud full of blcffing, and good, and comfort - y 
fo that a man fliall confefle, in refpitl of Afflictions , it was good 
for me that I was thus afrlided j as a man who was unwilling 
to bleed, yet when he fees the corrupt matter now out , he is 
glad with all his heart. And he fliall confefle, in refpeft of his 
Denja/j, If God had granted me my defire , I fhould have ru- 
ed it all my dayes : And he fliall confefle, in refped: of the Snf- 
fertfionsov prorogations of good, IfGodhadlet down fuch a 
good at that time that I fo importuned him,it had marred much 
of the good which I now enjoy. 

As thefe particulars do prove the Singularity of Providence 
towards the Church , He hath not dealt Jo with every Nation: 
So this lingular fpecial Providence is very admirable, as will ap- This Singular 
pear in feren things : ProviJencc,is 

1. It is altogether gracious ; from a Gracious affection , to Altogether 
a gracious end, All for good. Gracious. 

2. It is zerj Tender ; his eyes are over the Righteous , he Vci 7 Tender, 
carries the Lambs in his bofome • compafleth them about as 

the hills did ferufalem ; is a wall of fire about them. He hath 
feven eyes , is very watchful againft any evil that may hurt 

3. It is Myfteriotis : The Lord hath many hidden waves to Mjffcrioui/ 
do them good which we difcern not. In the virion of the Gol- 
den Candlefticks, Z^.4.3. there were feven Lamps , and fe- 
ven Pipes to the (even Lamps. God doth his people good by 
contraries, he doth them good by all the evil that dothbefal 

them-, brings life out of death. 

4 It is Glorious : He ufeth not only all ordinary creatures, Glcricuj; 
but the very Angels as miniftring Spirits for their good and 
defence-, as in Hevkjahs ak. Nay, Jefus Chrift himfelf as 
an Head, as an Husband, as a King undertakes for them. He is 
tin.* Bowl upon the top of the Golden Candleftick, Zacb.q.anS 
walks amongll the Golden Candlefticks , and holds the feven 

Bbb ^*" 

370 * The Votfrine of ProvidcnccT 

Stars in his right hand, Rev.z.x. And isthe Captain of the 
Lords Hofts,fojb.$.i4> 15. And fights for them, and prevails, 


Sxi& S« Ic is Exatt, in refpeft of, 

1. f^.*y«,Pfal.i 9.The Lord thy God is with thee whither - 
foever thou goeit. 

2m Times : When judgments and dangers are abroad •, he 
makes an Ark for Noah , is a San&uary and hiding place t 
is a Pillar and a Cloud, Ifa.4. Lifts up a Standard againft 
the flood, will not fuffer the Deftroycr to enter, £*<?^. 12. 
Never leaves, never forfakes them. 

3. Alt about their P erf ons\ Prefent with them inthefire,and 
in the water : No, not an hair of their head (hill fail* 
Senacherib (hall not (hoot an arrow into the City. 

Mt aeubu% * ^ 0t 0n ^ orc ^^ nar y > ^ uC Miraculous and Extraordinary^ 
working miracles .« 

1 . For their good,he divides the Sea,deaves the Rocb,rains 
down Manna from heaven, makes the Sun to (land ftill,and 
to go backwards. 

2:. Againft their enemies, he throws down ftones from hea- 
ven, makes the ftars to fight againft them, and the winds, 
and the waters. 
7. Hs hath rgbukjd Kings for their fa^es f as Tharaob, Se* 
ntcherib, and deftrojedthem^ and nations too , making all at- 
tempts againft his people unprofperous • fo that the ftout heart- 
ed have flept their deep , and have not found their hands, 
but their bows, and fwords, and armes have been bro- 
&mons of this But you will fay,Why this Singularity of Providence towards 
Singularity of fa people ? 

■tfT arethe Is ^^ Ch\Xrch arc the pesple of Gods ftngular A ffeHio^ they 
pcopfcof C G^s are a choice people, the people of his Love , his delight is in 
lingular Afffi-; them. Now where Lore is Singular, there Providence is Speci- 
$.ip*k. al •, you may alwayes obferve, peculiar intentions of care , and 

forecaft, and help, and defence according to the lingular de- 
gree of Love. God will^f Kingdoms for the ranfom of the 
people whom he loves , and will dafh in pieces the gates of hell 
to fecure his ov/n inheritance, 

a;. Pro- 

The Detfrine of Providence. 371 

2. Provider.ee runs through a /i>gu/ar CoVfnant to the Church Providence 
and reople of God, which is a rnofl Special thing. In tl.eCo- ru f s t^ cu l h w 
ver ant there is a choieenefs of Divine affection, and a choice- a c i,n * u ' 8r liK ^ 
nefsofgood- a bond of truth and wifdom to feal and execute 
all this. Things befal us from God, either as a Creator, or as 
from God reconciled in Chrift : What I do as a man, is one 
thing,what I do as a father is an other thing-, what I am as a ge- 
neral Friend, is one thing-, what I am as an Husband, is an other 
thing.The Covenant hath the precious blood of Chrift, the pre- 
cious promife9,the riches of mercy,if any good be moreexcellenc 
then other,either for the kind and nature of it,orfruit& virtue of 
it, it is that w cb comes out of the Covenantor theFountain here 
is all gracioufnefTe. Now God hath entred into peculiar Cove- 
nant with his Church, and therefore his Providence working 
for them according to the temper of the Covenant (which is an 
eminent bond of unfpeakable gracioufnefs)ic muit needs be more 

Now I come to make fome ufeful Applications of this. Is 
there a providence extending it felf to all the Creatures , and 
more efpecially to the Church and people of God ? Then, 

Firft, Let us learn to defend en that 'Providence : Why ? 7ji" e \ 
all our beings arc fram God, and all our Comforts are from Expend on *:hs: 
God- there is none fo able to fulfil our neceiTities, and none Providence. 
fo willing to do us good, and all ifTues do befal us according to 
the commands of his Providence: We cannot command any 
good to our felves, nor can we command the creatures to yield 
out their helps and affiftances : They are Gods ftewards to lay 
out their ftrength according to his directions ; and when any 
piefTures and troubles are upon us, who can remove them, who 
can blelTe them , but he who appointed them ? and why then 
fhould we not depend on his Providence ? If God had no Pro- 
vidence actually working in the Occurrences which do befal us , 
or if that Providence were not All-furricient to over-matter, 
rule, order, guide, reftrain, deliver ; or if it were not Omnifci- 
ent and wife, to direct the belt means , and to bring in the bed 
good,and to fquare out the beft conditioned to confer an help, 
and take offan evil in the fitteft times, then there were little 
reafon to depend on it. Or if we could by taking care and 
thought add to the continuation of our comfortable Bein£> • 

Bbb 2 but 

— -J . ^ ^ »»— ■ -I ■ ' ■ — 

372 The Dotl rim of Providence. 

bu c things will not be according co our cares, nor according to 
ourddires, nor accordiugco our project, when we have laid 
ouc our own conditions j God will alter this and make rt other- 
wife, he will for ever referve the glory ofanabfolute and fu- 
preme and li niver fal caufe to himfelf , therefore depend on his 
What it is to °fy* But you will fay, whit Is it to depend on providence ? 
depend on SoL I aniwer, it includes two things. 

Gods Provi- I- ^committing of our perfons and conditions to the will and 

dence. wlfdo me ,*nd power t *nd goodnefs of Gcd\ So David fti'les it in 

eSwi 0Ur/ ^ /,?7,J ' Commit thy way unto the 'fiord (A) if there bea 
condHons to c ^ n S wnicn tnou woutdft have brought about , do noc think to 
the will,wii- etTed it by thy own ftrength or wifdome, but put it into Gods 
dome,powcr, hands, give it up unto him to do it for thee , and trull on him 
Mdgoadnc&offorit, So 1 Pet.2 2$. Chrift isfaid to commit himfelf to him 
that judges rigbteouflj : and 1 /V/.4.19 We are commanded 
to commit the keeping of our fouls to him in welldsing^ as unto:a 
faithful creator : and zTiw. 1.12. Paul is per [waded that 
God U able to keep that which he had committed unto him. When 
I acknowledg God to be the fountain of my being and to be the 
fountain of my com forts, of my helps, of my health, of my plen- 
ty, of my lifc,of my liberty, of my peace, of my deliverance-and 
mine eyes are upon him , expeding thef; according to my par- 
ticular exigences ; Now I commit things to Godj now I depend 
on his Providence. 

«. t L«,r.^,- 2. A fubmittinoof our thoughts and affetlions unto God in 
To (ubmit our . •* , ... & J, A 9 r u . ... _,, 

shoufhtsand ™ e Particular dijpofittans of our perfons and conditions* lriat 

stffiaions unto when I want any outward good upon my feeking of God, 

GxUnthe (whom I acknowledg to be the Father of Lights, the fpring 

particular dif- f ever y mercy) I now lay down this comfort at the feet of 

L rrlTL°d OUr God > and arTeftionately fay : "Lord, if thou wilt bring about 

conditions. " tms comfort, I will blefs thee, if thou wilt nor, I will thank 

c< thee h it is that which I would have,not peremptorily, butfub- 

4t miffively : Not mjwiil % but thy will bs done • if this good 

" may be for thy glory, and for my good, I defire it ; if not,! 

" defire to want it as well as to enjoy it • it may feem good to 

" me, but not to thee , and therefore I give up both my com- 

" forts and my delires, both the things and the times into thy 

< 6 own hand , what thou wilt, and when thou Wilt, io let it be*. 


The Dotfrine of Providence. J^J - 

In like manner when we are in erodes, fufTerings, affli&ionsT" 
"OLord, thou art the great and good Cod, not an hair can 
11 fall without thy providence, much lefs can an affliction touch 
"me, or renew icfelf upon me ; what I fuffer, that I have dc- 
ft ferved , thou only art able to pardon fin, 'and to remove affli- 
,l ftion^I defire thee if it be thy will,if it be for thy g!ory,if it be 
"for my good to take off thy hand, I know all things are fo 
" ordered by thy providence, that they (hall work for good to 
"them that love thee; and therefore if it be for good, cake 
"away this cup from me-yet not my will, but thy will be done: 
4i If it be for good let thy hand reft yet upon me, till thou had 
"purged out my pride and fi n fu 1 nefs , till thou halt perfected 
" my patience, till thou haft beautified my faith , till thou haft 
<c raifed ray heart intirely from all earthly delig'its , to thee the 
<l higheft the only God and good. 

Oij. But what fhill we do, we cannot depend on God, we B 
cannot truft on his Providence , commit all to him , fubmic to depend ou 
his wili-.Confider a few things. God. 

i . Thou muft deper.d on Jome : For thou art a creature , and CcnfiJcr. 
thou art expofed to want and need, and fuch occurrences as ex- Thoumu ^ ex- 
ceed thy po .ver ; and there is none better to depend on then God • P on " mu * 
what doeft thou fee in thy felfco depend on thy felf ; what docft 
thou fee in man, or inthefonsof men j all their ftrength is 
but borrowed, and weak, and changeable ; man dieth, and his 
thoughts die, and hisftrength dies^ but Godis moft good in 
himfelf?and in dependent,and all mighty ,and wife and ready,and 
fure , why then , canft thou not depend on him : What the 
creature cinnot do, he can,and when they can but bewail thee, 
he can comfort and help thee. 

2. No better \\\iy to gain oar g«od then by dtpcnJing on god j\j bcrccrvw 
for it, Prov.3.6.//* all thy wayes ackn^rJulr hiw^..tnd he fi ill di~ to fain our 
reil thy pv.hs , when thou arc in any ftraighc, aud knowelt not rooJ/hen by 
which way to turn thee , and friends know not which way to d-pending on 
counfel thee, yet if thine eyes be to God, he will point out the G ' 
Wiy, and direct thee, Pfat. 375. C omm x r -J w< *y Hnt0 **' Lord, 
fruit jlfo i n him and he fb-ill brin^ it 1 1 p.ifs : There is the ef- 
fecting of the good-, God will mike it Co be, though thou 
knows noc how to compafs ic ; if th >u wile leave it to him , he Jcc *6 1 7 7<f» 
will deliver it CO thee, Pf<*!*17>9> Tnejulvation of thi-righte- 

374 The Dotfrine ef Providence. 

cm is of the Lord ^ he is their ftrengthin the time of trouble , 
v. 40. And the Lord /ball help them, and deliver them from the 
wicked^and fave them becaufe they truft in him* 
Nafurerway 3- No furer way u mifs our good then not to depend on God » 
to mifs our *P[aL% 2.7. Lot ! this is the man that made not God hisflrength 9 
goodjthennoc y ut trufttdin the abundance of his riches ; why loe ! what of 
God ? ° D him ? feev '5- G°d Jhall deftrcj him Jake him away , pluckhim 
out of his duelling place , and root him out of the land of the liv- 
ing. Cur fed be the man that truft eth in man , and m aketh flefb 
his arm , and Vvhofe heart departeth from the Lord, Jer. 17. 5. 
And v.6. He Jhallbt li\e the heath in the dtfart % andfballtot 
fee when good cometh , but frail inhabit the parched places in the 
Voildernefs, in a fait land , and not inhabited , Ifa. 7. 9. If ye 
will net believe, furelyye fhall not be eftablifhed t 
Who ever de- 4. who ever depended on him but fped well} Our fathers tru* 

bwf d°we £ fi' d in thee * Und thou iidn Miver theM * faid David * 1° b did ' 
ut pe we ' and he came up frefh again : David jhough he walked through 

the valley of the fhadow of death, yet he would fear none ill ; 

Paul did truft in him, and he was delivered. 

Wh de- * " ^ y W ^* *^ cf * not Mpwd on ^ jim * ow (when thou haft wit 
pcndonhiai and ufeof reafon andlimbs, andftrengthj to do thee good * Voho 
now,whobath^ take care for thee in the womb, and in thy fwadling gar- 
provided for ments ? when thou wert not able to fhift for the leaft good,nor 
thee hitherto, flrong enough to put by the leaft evil , wilt thou forfake his 
care now ? Who tool^ thee up from thy mothers womb , and Vcas 
thy God, when thou did/} hang upon thy mothers heft ? Pfalm Zz* 

6. why Vellt thou not depend upon him for acce fortes • who 
Wh J n °h 1 ^^ °f^ s 6WH & raeicfi f m f s conferred the principals ? If he hath 
foracceffo'ries, done great matters for thee, will he not do the iefTe ? if he hath 
who hath con- given thee that which none but a God can give, will he not 
fcrred the prin- break open the ordinary courtefies of a daily friend, for food 
ripals* and raiment? Rom. 8. 32. He that / pared not his own Son , but 

delivered him up for m all , how Jh all he not with him alfofrttlj 
give ut all things > 

7. What is it to him, to ccme in and do thee good > what expence 
What is it to ^ fa at ? or t0 wttat trouble and pains is he expofed } he can fay 
God to do thee the worc | ^ and ftill all thy troubles . he can fpeak the word, and 

all obey him .* He can command his loving kindnefs in a mo- 


The Dochine of Providence. 375 

menc t and do thee what good he pleafc:h . what \% it for him , 
to turn,to guide,to rcftrain.to take off, to let down.to command 
any good to thee, or evil off thee •, who every moment fatisfics 
and iuftcins a whole world of creatnres ? 

8. finfidero( QMftt reafonings fori*. He looks after the Confictor 
Sparrows,much more after men- after the grafs and Lillics, M^t. C\mfo ftafoo- 
6. CMuch more after j 9 u y Oje of little faith ; after Grangers , ,n * s crc * 
much more after thofe of his own houfehold ; after enemies , 
much more after friends , after them that hate him, much more 
after them that love him • after all , much more after his chil- 
dren : Is God worfe then an ir 4 fidel,not to provide for his own 
family ? 

We may raife our felves Co a dependance upon Gods Provi- To rahc our 
dence ; by fuch reafonings *\ thefe. Iclres t0 a dc ~ 

1. Conclude, from the lefsto the greater • if he clothes the gjjjjjjj, 
grafs, feeds the Ravens,much more you, &c. From t he Left to 

2. Conclude from the greater to the le r s : If God have gi- the grearcr. 
ven you his Son, how fliould he not with him give you all from the ire- 
things, Rom.%. 32. if he give grace and glory, he will not tertolhc lcI " s ' 
withhold any good, thing, Pfal.84.11. 

3. Conclude f /cm things paft, to a providence ftr things pre- From ihirrs 
fent : As David, 1 Sam. 17. 37. The Lord that delivered me paft,to things 
out of the paw of the Lion , and out of the Paw of the Bear ?rc(cnt. 
will deliver me out of the hand of thisPhiliftim. 

4. Conclude from things pafi andprefent to things future : Prom things 
mVuuL 2 CV.1.10. Who delivered us from fo great a death, P ift ? nJ P rclcnt 
and doth deliver, in him we truft that he will yet deliver us : So t0 thin * s :urc ' 
Divid, Pfal 23. He reckons what God Iiad done, and was 

11:11 a doing for him, and thence concludes, v.6. Surely goodnefs 
and mercy (hall follow me all the dayes of my life. 

5. Conclude/Vw large relation; to (pecial: Gods Provi- p rora j 3r - c rc . 
dence extend; to (Grangers, (hill it not to thofe of his owa latlons to $c- 
houfhold ? if to enemies, then much more to children. cM« 

6. Conclude /Kw ancient effects cf Providence to the Church , ^ ro:T1 inc \ cnz 
far a Providence fuit el to thy prefent condition : The Lord hath { fl:tfsot :Pco- 
thought on his Churclyn her low eftate • delivered Ifrael out of videnec :o a 
Egypt,overthrownTWo/;,refcued Orc/i,preferved the Jews a- Pi0Vul ' nCC ,n 
ga- nil Hamtns Plot, built his Temple and the walls of Jcrufi-^ ;fn:ccp: 
jem^gainft Plots, Scandals, Weapons,in E^rah and Ncbcmiah* 


37 6 The Voffrine of Providence, 

time : Thought of Jofeph in the Prifon • Darnel in the Lions 
Den ^ the three Children in the furnace • Jonah in tjie Whales 
belly. Given reft to the Church in the midftof bloudy per- 
fecutions in Pauls time, and in Conftantims time. Saved Ifrael by 
300. men of Gideon ^difcomfited tbe Philiftims by fonathan,zr>d 
his Armor bearer ; delivered King tAfa by a few againfta 
Thoufand Thoufand, He^kjah from Senachmh % and fehofaphat 
from the Children of Ammon^ Moab y and mount Seir. Cer- 
tainly the Church is ftill under the fame Covenanted under the 
fame providence, if we do but bring the fame veflel of faith and 

Obj. But I would have this good, and yet it flicks, God will 
not fend it out. 

Sol. Ourdefire is not thefquarc of good, neither muft ou* 
will be the rule of Providence. 

2. Yet he doth nor, hereafter he may , he depends aright on 
Providence , who doth not cull out his good , nor fee God a 

Obj. But the cafe is d fficult. 

Sol. To whom are difficulties ! to man , to us ; but Is there 
any thing too hard for the Lord ? is his hand ftiortncd , that it 
cannot favc ? and what is it for him to alter the heart.or to make 
the will to yield , or to remove the grounds of refolutions , or 
to^take orTimpediments,or to caft in irrefiftiblemotives?He can 
mgke the Egyptians as willing to fend out h.s people, as to keep 
them backhand now to adorn and inrich them ,as once to opprefs 
and fpoil them. Nothing ftands in his way, as a bar againft his 
power- neither the depths of mifery, nor the hopelefncfs of our 
infufficiency,r!*>r the deadnefsof vifible meanes,nor the combina- 
tion of powerful info!encies,nor the confpired intentions of ruine 
are any thing to him, his own arm alone can doeit,and that which 
Vfe. 2. * 5 * n fcitely exalted above all ftrength, can be ftayed by none. 
Let usnotTex tf * here be a Providence generally extending to all, and cfpe- 
anddifejuiee daily to the people of God : Then We Jh >ou Id ham not to vex 
our minds **& and d> fqmet oar minds and harts.- This is it which fhrift lef- 
bearts; Toned his Difciples, fince there was a God who looked to the 

Mat. 6.1*. Grafs, and to the L'llies, and a father who looked unto them , 
therefore they Jliould not take thought and care^ CMat.6, And 

their heAftr Jbottld not be troubled, 1 fV.5.7. C*(r'*tlj ourC(ire 


TbeDotfrine of Providence. 377 

upon him, for he careth for you , (.1.) Do not yc perplex your 
felves about your conditions, your fafcties, your fupports, you 
may eafe your felves of all this, there is a God who takes care 
for you, who mindesyou, who thinks on you, who will pro- 
vide well enough for you. Phtl,^. 5. Let your m. deration be 
ItnoVvn to all men, the Lard is at hand ( i.) do not you rent 
your felves with excefle of grief, or vaftneffe of getting, or 
impatience in fuffcring,as if there were none necr to help you, 
The Lord is at h^nd % your help, your llrength, yourfupply, 
your comfort is not farre from you, v. 6. Be careful for no- 
thing, (.i.) whatfoever your condition be, do not you now af- 
flict your felves with anxieties, and feares, and thoughtfom- 
nefle, But *« every thing I j prayer and fupplication, with 
that! fnvingjet your recjueft be made known unto GW,(.i-)Blefa 
for what you have, and pray for what you want, and leave it 
to God, and fo in patience poflefle your foules. There are di- 
vers things about which we vex our felves in vain, ( furely they We rtx our 
are difquieted in vain, faid David in another cafe, TfalJ^^ in *"" 
39.6.) abouc 

1. One is the Deadnefs of means. When wedefire a good The j ca( j nc f f 
and though we conceive a life in the fountain (an ability in f means, 
God to do it) yet we apprehend a deadnefs in the meanes , we 

cannot fee any fenfiblc teftimonies, or probabilities in the fecond 
caufes to (tay us, and feed our hopes and expectations, and 
therefore we fret and vex at our own unhappinefs, and the exi- 
gences that we are put to. 

2. Another is, the Cro (fenejfe of events. When we have The gnflfa fa 
looked for light, and behold darkneflc • when we have exped- f eycntj4 

cd favour and meet with difrcgard^ when we have fetdown 
comfort, and are arretted with forrow • when we have written 
for plenty, but the anfwer is poverty ^ when we have promifed 
to our felves fecurity, but a fhipwrack of many lofTes hath funk 
our eftates Now the foul is filled with variety and cunofity 
of diiturbing thoughts, and doth moft artificially torment and 
difqiuet it felf with exceffivc forrow , and melancholly, and 

3. A third is, Tbefreakne([eandthinnejfe of our conditions : Tht *" kn . c k 
when there is no more then from hand to mouth, and that it i*° nj ottrco ul ~ 
with us as with a candle fed with a drop of oyl,if you do not 

C c c addc 

378 The Doff rim of Providence, 

adde another, the flame goes out. So when our livings have 
but this peny and ftock , and but this piece of bread, and that 
We may fay, I have but a handful to make a cake for me and 
my child, that we may eat and die. This impotency of condi- 
tion is that which doth fad and grieve , and di!*ra& us, and 
thrufts out many violent expreffions, What {hall we eat } and 
v/hat (hall we drink ? Shalt we die for thirfi > Can he gi ve bread 
Thesteat 4* A Fourth & The great^flrength of a prefent affile! ion 1 

fcngthof a Or the fucceffive exchange of many affti&ions. When there 
prefent a$i- doth betide us an intimate and quick erode, in a good which lay 
&ion, next the heart ; et elfe afflictions come like fob*s nieiTengers, 

one had fcarce delivered his errand, but another brings news of 
another loffe, and perhaps, the next affli&ions are the foreft ti- 
dings • I fay when affti&ions come thus on a perion like waves 
in the fea, one riding on the neck of another ; or like foldiers 
in a battel, one file of men prefenting and giving fire after ano-* 
ther^and then a main body of afflidions,encountring us at once. 
Oh this is a fad eftatc and we think that we may take good leave 
now to be angry , nay to be impatient,and vex,ard defpair, as if 
there were no Divine Providence in fuch a condition as this, 
Strange inter- \ S A Fifth is, Strange checkings and interruptions after fair 
prions afccrj and probable proceedings. When we have chofen means and 
probable pro- have confecrated them by prayer and dependance, and have.en- 
sccding*. deavoured with all fidelity and uprightnefTf, not to mingle any 
unlawful ad or courfe, to finifh a lawful defire •, and God hath 
feemed to breath on all, and tofmileon the enterprife ; yet on 
the fudden he checks all- it is with us as with the Sun, which 
though ii did fhine yet there comes a cloud and clafps it, and 
coversit-, foGod doth many times put all our probabilities 
toaftand,nayheturnes them rather to the contrary that it 
ihall not be, nay and perhaps wheels things about fo that it 
fhall never be The heart in fuch a cafe is put to it, it is trou- 
bled, it (lands ftill, it admires, it is difquieted, itknowesnot 
what to make of Providence now. 
The doubtful- 6. A Sixth Cafe of vexing, is The doubt fulnejfe of pofietu 
neffe of pofte- 1 y. Perhaps a man hath many children, little means, few or no 
m< friends, the mother is dead, the children yong, the goods di- 

vided, very 3 verymean 9 and he is dying. Here armies of cares 
i , and 

The Dotfrineof Providence. 379 

and of feares multiply in the mind, and difputes, and projefts, 
and when all the imaginations and devices are fummed up, they 
come to nothing, they can contribute no effectual relief or en- 
largement, yet the man is troubled, and thinks, what (hall be- 
come of mine } 

Now I (hall endeavour to (hew unto you how the goodnefle, Tbe r ^ 
and wifdom, and power of Providence may take off all thefe p ro? i ucncc 
grounds of vexation. may tak« cfTall 

Touching the firft, which is The deadneffe of meanes, that thefc grounds 
either they are not, or they work not, they do notfet out to * * cx * :lon - 
further, or bring in our good ; they are as it were a(leep,though ~ ^^ 
we knock at them, yet they hold in that good and afljftance^"^ 8 ^^ 
which God hath put into them, I fay concerning this, obfervc ihe powerful 
the powerful methods of Providence, viz. methods o& 

I. The fountain of our good is not in the means: they are Providence 

the channels which let in the (hip many times ; they are the "jdiisCaie. 
.Z ii- 1 J 1' 1 r • Tbe fountain 

citterns or rather the pipes to convey the water, but the fpring f our - 00ci ^ 

of all good is in heaven. When thou art fick thy health is not not in the 
in the Phyficians hand, but in Gods hand ^ when thou art means. 
needy, thy relief is not in thy friend, but in thy God > it is 
He that filleth the hungry, and fatufieth tke needy. When I 
give a man a gift, he takes it out of my hand, my heart was the 
caufe of the gift, my hand was onely the inftrument- the means 
which we fee are but as it were the fingers of God his lower 
hand • but his love is the fountain of all the benefits we enjoy : 
and therefore God doth many times (hut up the means, he clo- 
feth that hand becaufe we fhould learn whence to draw out 
helps, and know to whom we owe all our mercies. Yea and 
we find thus much, that God doth draw us up to himfclf by 
flopping up thofe lower wells of water When the rivers fail 
us, then we will look up to the clouds for rain-, when means 
ftand as unufeful, or as unable, then we can look up to God 
and fay, if the Lord himfelf benotonour fide, &e. we can 
nowconfefle, that all mercy, and all helps, and all comfort is 
onely in Gods hands, he who is cffentially good hath the com- 
mand and diftribution of every good. 

2. No weans of tkemfelves alone, are able to do an] thing «,No meani cfc 
They cannot turn themielves nor incline thcmfclves to our help -^nifdves »- 
unlcfle God turn, and incline, and command tbem. If God^J n ire ^ * to 

G c c 2 will 

380 7 be Dotfrine of Providence! 

will not ad and ufe them, the inftrument can do nothing ( as 
the hammer or rod) if we ufe them not. They do not work to 
our helps, in a natural and neceffary way, but by appointmenc 
and order, according as God is pleafed to work or not to work, 
fo they prove affiftances or no affiftances unto us : like Job's 
friends who came to comfort him, but they did for a while 
onely look on htra and were filent, fo the means can but look on 
us, and we on them, till God bid them become comforts and 
helps, There u none faved by the multitude of an hoft. All the 
means in the world nakedly confidered, are but as a mill, which 
if the wind comes to it, then it can grind the corn, but if the 
Wind forbears, the Mill is at a (land ^ Or like a Dial, on which 
if the Sun (nines, it may dire&us-, but if the Sun lies under a 
cloud, it is of no prefent ufe to us, fo if God hold off from 
the means, if he breathes not upon them, if he cloth not caft a 
lively influence into them, they can and will do nothing for us. 
If thou be troubled in thy mind, thy deareft friend cannot be 
comfort to thee unlefle God doth put power into his confer- 
ence ^ he may fpeak words unto thee but not comfort to thee 5 
and if thou be difeafed in thy body, thy moft skilful Phyfitian 
cannot be health, and eafe to thee, unlefle God doth put health 
into the potion or plaifter, he may prefcribe cordials, but he 
cannot prefcribe health or life. For God hath a Providence 
which over-rules all means, and all means being but fubordinate 
agents depend on God, both for being, and working, and re- 
ftraint ^ they are not the abfolutc Lords of their own operati- 
ons , and God hath fo intruded them with power to do us 
good , that yet he keeps in his own hand the delivery out of 
that good; as a Matter who though he hath put a Cabinet or 
Box of Treafures into his fervants chamber, yet he keeps the 
keyhimfelf, fo that none of it comes out, but by his will and 
appointment • in like manner , though God hath laid feveral 
God doth ufu- a P tne # es ln tne Creatures to do good, yet God keeps the key 
ally takeaway (•'•) God doth fo determine of things that they fhall not be- 
theeffedual ftow themfelves in their own way, but onely according to his 

virtue of the direction, otherwife we might bow down and kifle the Crea- 
means,when ture> 

i&enccson 3- §°ddoth ufually ta\e* away the ejfe&atl virtue of means 

licok *dnn m fet qht confidences on them. There is an ufe of means 

~ " " " and 

7 be Dtftrine of Providence. 381 

tnd there is a confidence on means • I may put my hand upon 
them, but I may not put my heart upon them. If I fet up 
means as caufes, and look upon them as the fpring< of life and 
death, that if I have them I am furely made, if I have them 
not, I am certainly marred. When a man will put his whole 
condition into the hands of fuch and fuch means, this man doth 
in his heart depart from God, and God ordinarily doth dafh 
the confidences of fuch a perfon, as Jer. 2. 36 why gaddeft 
than about jo m^ch to change thy way , thou /bait be ajhimed of 
Egypt as thou waft afbamedcf *s4jfyria:v.}7. Tea thou Jhalt 
go forih from him, and thine hands upon thine head, for the Ltrd 
hath resetted thy confidences and thou (halt net profper in them. 
When Ifrael did dote on her lovers, God threatens to make 
her alhamed of her lovers , fo when we do dote and fet our 
arTe&ions and perfwafions, that it (hall be done, and cannot but 
be done, if fuch means prcfent themfelves, without eying the 
great power of theall-difpofingGod, he will fruftrate our con- 
fidences , and flay the meanes before our faces , we fhill 
fee the means to flie off, or to fink , or to deny their help 
unto u?. 

4. Divine Providence Vpi/1 feldom work and atpear in fet p r0 vidence 
means (.i.) in fuch wayes which we cut out through a diffident mil feldom 
curiofity. There are two forts of fet means. work and ap- 

1. Such as God hath drawn out , this is a way walk in it. ltP« rin ^ c 

is fuch a path which he hath commanded us to tread in and to*?"" 5 ; , 

, F ,. rr 1 vro lores ot 

expect his blefling. [«m<ans. 

2. Such as a Diflruftful heart devifeth : Which is either 
fome merely conceited form of help, or elfe a determination of 
Providence to this or that way onely. v. g. If God doth not 
ftirre up fuch a friend , or if he doth not fpeak by fuch a Mini- 
fler, or if he doth not blefle the directions of fuch a Phyfician, 
when we tie and limit Providence thus to arife in our own 
wayes, we caufe Providence to hold back » God keeps in much 
£ood, for which we fet him our wayes and our times : God 
hath feveral means to do us good, and he doth it not alwayes by 
one, becaufe he is able to do it by any, and fometimes he holds 
uphimfelf in all, that we fhould learn to truft on none of themp l0 vid<netcr- 

buton himfelf. cinsrily makfs 

5, Gods Providence ordinarily doth m,ik* choke of negleaed^'f of def " 

J - -- * — 1 piled means. 

382 The Doffrine ef Providence/ 

and defpifed means* For things do moft appear as gifts from 
God, when the creatures in our opinion and reafon, are either 
moft unable, or moft improbable to yield them unto us -, the 
way that we lead thought on : as God doth chufe the weakjhings 
of the World. I Cor. 1 .27. To confound the things that are migh- 
ty ; and v.28. Bafe things and defpifed things ; J fay as he doth 
make choice of thefe in the miniftrations of the Gofpel of 
Grace, fo he doth bring about our temporal good oft times by 
the fervice of moft unlikely and difregarded means. Though 
2%aaman the Adrian defpifed the waters of Jordan, and pre- 
ferred thofe of Abana and Pharpar Rivers of Damafcm 
2King5- 10. Yet thofe flighted waters did cleanfe and cure 
him. And when David prefented himfelf to deliver Jfrael 
from Goliah and the Philifiims,though his brethren rebuked his 
audacity and forwardnefs, and though Saul feared his youth- 
fulnefle and inability, and though the Philiflim derided and 
curfed his bold attempt, yet David flings him down with a lit- 
tle ftoae to the ground ^ fo doth God give great deliverances 
to his people , and great overthrowes to their enemies, and 
much good to us, not alwayes according to the fulneffe arid 
fairnefleof means, but fometimes by weak, and mean, and un- 
expected inftruments. The friend which thou haft let up as 
thy refuge, doth fail thee, when a perfon by whom thou couldft 
not expect an affiftance doth plentifully refrelh thy bowels ^ It 
was the poor man whom none regarded, that Did deliver the 
u# City ftrongly befieged, Eccl&H % i$. And the broken pieces 

of the (hip landed all the fouldiers fafe in /Wsfhipwrack, 
Atls 27.44. As it was faid of Luther who was the inftrument 
ftirred up to (hake the chair of Rome, fir fine fpe, fine re, con- 
tulit orbis opes. A worthlefs, regardlefs, flighted work, yet an 
occafion of the greateft reformation in Chriftendom. 
God can quick- 6. G°d can quicken dead means. Though the means ( which 
en <Jead means, we can find out ) be as improbable to bring in our defired good 
as Sarah's womb to conceive a child, Yet fhe received a child 
w'ten fhe was pa ft age , Heb. Xi.11. For (jod quicheneththe 
dead and ca/ieth thofe things which be not, as though they were, 
Ro.4.17. In £^..37 1, 2. God leads the Prophet into the midft 
of the valley Which was full of bones, and they were very many, 
and very driejciow faith God unto him, S.^Son ofman,can thefe 

The Dotfrlnc of Providence. 383 

benes live ? He anfwered, O Lord God thou knowefl • Then (jod 
commanded him to prophefte unto them, and bone came to bone, and 
the finewes and the fit fh came upon them, v. 7,8 lAnd breath 
came into them t and they lived and flood upon their feet, an exceed- 
ing qretf army, ver.ic\ 

Thus it may be in the deadnefle of all means , when 
there may be as little reafon to look for any good from 
them , as for life and ftrength from dead and dry bones , 
yet God can breathe upon them, and put a life and ftrengch, and 
dedre, and help from them unto us. Even when we come to 
fay There is no h*pe , yet then can God revive the root and 
caufeitto fend out the branches^and when darknefle hath al- 
moft extinguifhed all light, yet God can create and inable the 
mofl fainting means with lufficiency of ftrength and affiftance. 
Ifa 50.10. Who is he that wallas In dar^neffe^ and fees no light, 
let himtrufl in the name of the Lord, and flay upon his God, 
Though it comes to that, By whom {hall Jacob arife for he is 
fmafl ? Or to that, J looked en my right hand, and there was 
none to deliver . Or to that, Mafter fave m or elfe Vee perifb, 
yet Gods hand is not fhortned that it cannot favc He can 
ftir the hearts of people and give charge and commiffion un- 
to them to confider of thy perfon, and of thy condition, and to 
fpeed in to be help,or coun(el,orcomfort,or deliverance,or (lay 
and refuge unto thee. K* 

7. god is not tied to any Means*. The Obligation here is on p x ^f 

our- part, not on Gods. He can do us good in every G ^ i^not ti<d 
means, whether great or weak, whether manifeft or any Means, 
fecret • yea, though means do fail , yet he can do us good 
without them. Forfmuch as he is an independent Agent, 
and borrows not any good to do us good ; and he is able to do 
exceeding abundantly above all that we are able to ask or thinks : 
This is no extraordinary experience, that when we have tired 
out our felvcsin theufeand expence of means, and all of them 
have fpent their skill, and power, and readtneffe to do us good, 
and now God muft (hew his immediate finger, yet he hath fpo- 
ken the word and we have been healed. Many a perfon hath 
been caft afide as a dead man by the judgment of a College of 
Phyficians, whom ycc God hath (without them) alone reftored 


3 84 The Doctrine of Providence. 

to life again. Though the fubjed cannot perform any things 
of office without the Kings Seal and authority , yet the King 
may and can perform them without us : Second caufes cannot 
do good without the confcnt and influence of the firft,yet God 
can bring about his purpofes and intentions without them * As 
he is Abfolute to chufe what means he pleafeth, and wife in the 
ufingofthem to pitch onthebeft, fo he is Omnipotent to com- 
mand by his own arme all our helps and fupplies.- 
Cafe 2. ^ ne f econ d Caufe of Vexation, was the Crofsenefs of events : 
The croffcnefs When our projecting thoughts are difapointed ^ not that iffue 
of events. which we defigned, but fome other quite contrary behappens 
The goodnefs unt ous. in this cafe we fliould feel out the goodnefle of Pro- 
of Providence ^g^ anc [ not vex Therefore know, 

We muft not J • That ifre mu(t not thinhjo wrong Providence of its Rights : 
think to wrong There are Tc^g^amongft us, fome Royalties which are the 
Providence of Kings Prerogatives, upon which no fubjed may prefume to in- 
its righrs. trench. And there are Magnalia, fome wonderful and peculi- 
ar rights which God aflumes to himfelf , the which no creature 
muft wreft out of his hands. To be a fountain of good, none but 
God can be this ^ and to be the End of thing sjiom but He ; and 
to fet up peremptorily fuch a particular Iffue, that this (hall be , 
or that thus and thus it {hall be; this is one of the Eights of Pro- 
vidence. Such an iflue and event we may propound with a re- 
Jam.4.i 5. fervation and fubmifiion, as S. James faid , // God will, but pe- 
remptorily we may not. Only he hath liberty to fet up fuch a 
particular iflue , who hath of himfelf power and wifdom to 
fhape Occurrences fo, as effectually to drive and fail into that 
The Iffues of$ 2. The Iff ties of Providence are ever better then the Iffues of 
Pro? idence are Defire : There are fome iffues which fall out by Providence ac- 
ever better cording to our defire ; there be fome iffues which we do defire, 
£ f d n fi hC IffaCS Providence dekats them by making things to be otherwife. 
Now the iffue of Providence is alwayes the beft, becaufe it is an 
iffue grounded upon a faultleffe goodnefle , and upon an uner- 
ring wifdom and prefcience : I can ( at the higheft) but think 
it will be good for me, but God doth clearly know it will be 
bad for me That which I defire is not therefore good for me 
becaufe I defire it, but that which God brings upon me,is there- 
fore good, becaufe he hath done it. Thc thing that I defire is 


The Doctrine of Providence. 385 

plenty, and the thing which God layes on mc is poverty - f That 
fcarcity which God brings is far better (in the proof of it) then 
that plenty which I crave • for my plenty might have been a 
furfet, a fnare at that time, but my fcarcity hath kept meclofer 
to God, humbler jn my mind, more diligent in my calling^ore 
depending on Gods promifes, more careful in prayer , more 
watchful in my converfation then perhaps 1 (hould hive been 
«'fmy condition had been more full and great. The thing that 
I lay out is Health^ and the thing which God brings is Sicknefs. 
My health (in this cafe) would not prove to me fuch a mercy as 
my ficknefs ; my Shop perhaps had been fuller with that , but 
my Soul is now made better with this : Many a man has caft an- 
chor by ficknefs at Heaven gates, who hath been fayling in the 
time of his health with full ipeed to Heli. You make much a • 
doe tocompafsand fetch in fuch a worldly creature, and pro* 
pound much comfort in the enjoying of it; you can no foonec 
tafte it, but either it rifethagamft you as a difcomforr, or eifc 
is taken away from you,ar.d the (hort twinkling of your comfort 
ccafeth. Do not vex at this, but fee the Arc of Providence 
which thus corrects our fetlings on the creature, and ma kes OS 

to know that the creature is no more and no longer a comfort 

then God will make it fo , and that our fouls mult mountEjg h- __ 
er to find an Ark to reft in,then the deluge of vain thing-. Why 
(hould I not yield to that iflue of Providence, which hath ac 
or.ee hindred an evil, and done me a kindnefs ; I faw the good 
which fuch an iflue of my defire would have brought, but I faw 
not the evil which lyed under or mingled with it-, I faw not 
what evil might have come with it, or what ill blood it might 
have bred in my heart (perhaps not able yet to enjoy and ufe 
fuch a mercy.) ' Tis true, this iiTue which God brings is contra- 
ry to my expectation, but it fhall not be contrary to my good, — - 
even difcomforts let in by a fweet providence, though they do 
not rel.fti , yet at length they prove moft lingular Confo- 

3. There are divers forts of croflings , 1. -Some which P* Ch . fen C 2 I £^f 
ceed from I^rtoranct^s when unwittingly we let flie a word, or q 
bolt out an action which proves an impediment to the defign Some which 
of an other. 2. Others which proceed from Afdlice , when p;oc«d from 
with that evil man we low Tares on purpofe to hinder the wheat ]\ ' 

D d d and °- • 

8(5 The DoBrinc of Providence. 

andharveft VYc lay plots and devifes to crofs the intention* 
of our neighbour from the comfortable actainings of his defires. 
O-fromPru- 3. And fome which dofpringfrom T> ruder.ee>, as the fa:her 
d * n «« doth many times crofs the child, not out of Ignorance, becaufc 

he knows not his defire, or what is Hi- nor out of Malice, Vy 
vex the heart of his dear child,but of a Pious Hftfd*m t knowing, 
That not what he defires, bjt perhaps what he . diflikes is belt 
for him : Even Pbjficl^ though the. patient likes it not, is bet- 
ter then Mt&i whico yet he craves. And thus doth God crofs 
events to his people out of a lingular refped , and cut of wife 
grounds to their good ; not that he envies them the enjoyment 
of any thing which will prove good to them, but that he 
hinders much evil which, would otherwife. break in upoa 
V them. 

If God croffech 4, If Qod croffeth the inyojlng oj "one good 9 it is becaufe he 
the in joying o f hath purpof e^to be flow upon us a, better good : As we cannot al • 

rcXftow^bec-^ ^ WC arC n ° C a ^ €t0 

sergood. " comprehend the Latitudes of a good; there may be a better 
good for thee then what thou haft had, or what now thou era- 
veft. And it may fo fall out that one outward good may hin- 
der another , there being fome good things of the fame kind 
w cb are incompatible at once andGod doth therefore disappoint. 
us in the lefler,having referred for us by his fpecial Providence a 
mare fuitable good in all concurrence of circumftances. The fa- 
ther croflcth the child in a mean Cottage, becaufe he intends to 
fettle on him a large and more noble inheritance. If thou arc 
cro (Ted in thy deft gn of a particular good, it is becaufe Provi- 
dence feeth it will not be good for thee, or not good at this 
time, or that there is a better good then that intended to thee, 
which xhough for the prefent thou canft not fee, yet hereafter 
when things do ripen and open themfeives thou.fhalt confefTe 
mith thankfulnede.. 
There is -a ^ # There is * double, crojjing of. a* event, one by Ab folate de • 

double crofltag ^^ another by fitting and preparing a (itfejfcn, which is a, 
fpace of ripening, jko And by a thing that is contrary God 
Cafe 3. can further our-goodj though it be contrary to our expectation, 
Tb: weaknefs. yet it may be fubordinate to Gods difpofition. 
ard.unlikc'y- A third Cafe of Vexation is the PVeaknefs and XJnli^e/jhecd 
.^odofourpre-^^^ prefent conditions, which are feeble and too fhortto 


The Dotfrine of Providence. 387 

maintain us and ours. Our lives in this cafe Teem like a long 
piece of wick with a few drops of oil to feed the Lamp. Per- In this et> Pro- 
Daps many mouths, and little money, or rayment, or meat, yet vi cnccma y 
here Providence may fuccourthe foul, by confiderinn w€CMtm $ b§ 

1. T>tvt»e Providence u a Daily cart :\ou lee thole Hying crea- profUeoceki 
tures, the birds, the Ravens, and the reft of them, they feed fo Daily care, 
to day, that they know not where to exped: their breakfa ft to 
morrow, but God provides a new Table for them every day , 
they ftep out and find it fo, and therefore they deep quietly in 
the night. You know what Chrift counfelled his Difciples, 
Mat. 6. Take no thought for to morrow ; and he bade them to 
fray, Give us this day our daily bread. If God were weary to 
give thee thy da' ly penny, or unable to continue mean Hippies, 
unto thee, then thou mighteft have feme reafon to vex. But 
as David fpake, Pfal. 37.3. Truft in the Lord , and do good, Jo 
/halt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou folic be fed, Jf thou 
canft find an hand to labour, and Faith to truft, God Will find 
meat to feed thee, and raiment to cloath thee. 

2. The bleffing of Providence can add more weans to a little ^ The biiflin- o& 
• Jlrengthenalittle to continue till wore comes in* There is a ^ rovic!cncc Wn 
marvellous art in Divine Providence. ** ^ ™°" mMM 

1. Addition-, whith is a ftrange fucceffionofone means in 
the room of another, that when one is ended another begins. 
E Half is fent to the brook Ckerith, but then God commanded 
the Ravens to feed him there, i King.17.4,5,6. After that he 
is lent to Sarepta, but then there alfo God had commanded a 
WidcW woman to fuftain him, v.g. 

2. Continuation, i King.17.14. The barrel of meal (hall not 
wafle, neither (hall the crufe of oil fail \ until the day that the 
Lord ftudtth rain up 'on the earth. \ *\$. And [he, and he % and 
her houfe did eat many dayes. It is not what we fee in hand , 
but what we can feel out in Providence. A condition which 
isvveak in fight may be full in providence. I may give my child 
fo much today, and yet I refervc more for him againft tomor- 
row. Thn which he hath is but little and will not endure, but 
that which I will daily dfpence is more, and (hall be enough co 
keep him: Some Chriltians do live more upon hand theno- 
thers. God doth as it were (to their eye and obfervation) de- 
liver out every day all the allowance they have,and others have 

Ddd 2 an 

588 7 he Dotfrlne $f Providence, 

an eftate crouding in more plentifully ac once. There is but a 
very little difference 'twixt the one and the other ; for that pro- 
vidence which hath given out (at once) a large provifion for 
many dayes to the one, doth yet £\n& out continual and daily 
provifion fucceffively for the other- and what matters it if I 
live by a fucceftive fpending of the much meat which I have, 
or by a fucceflive and frefh fupply every day fronrthe 
market ? 
Cafe 4 A fourth Cafe of Vexation is the ftrengthofa prefect or fuc- 
Thcprefcnt at ceffive exchange of many and greater aff, 1 it ions . 
fucccffive ex- For the affoyling of which, obferve thefe particulars, 
change of ma- x £([ ajftiftions take their cemmiffion from ^Divine cprovi- 
anions"" ^ ence ' T ^ey are not l ^ m P w ^ch come by chance, but by or- 
ln this cafe SeSTand appointment. Job 5. 6. Affiitlion comet h not forth of- 
eonfiicr, the d'*fi, neither doth trouble fpring out of the ground. It is an 

All afflictions arrow which comes from an high quiver ; the blows which thou 

Sffi^V *" feeleft are bclow > but the hand wllich ftrikes ** above - As pat * 1 
Vwiidtnct™ ^ * n an ot ^ cr ca ^ e > &** fi*^ l ^ e J/ P reat ?h except they beftnt ? 
Rom.io. So I fay of all affiidions, They are meffengers- as 
"~~Jihud faid to Eglcn, 1 have an err and to thee f rem God. So may 
every afflidion fay, I am a meflenger difpatched from God. It 
is an arreft ferved out of the Court of heaven, Mic 6 9 Hear the 
rod y and who hath appointed it. Affliction is as a rod, it is a fmart 
kindof Dodrin(and therefore ft is elfewhere called the fcourge) 
but God appoints it,not one laih befals us but by his command^ 
Amos 3.6iSba/l there be evil in a City and the Lord hath not dene 
it? There isevilofiniquity^ndthismandoth^hisisafinfulevil, 
in which God hath no effeding hand; and there is aneviiof 
calamity, and this God doth j this is a miferableevil in which 
God hath an inflicting hand. Nay, the Apoftle oft times tells 
us of a preordination to affiidions, Rom S. 29. So iT^/3.3, 
He would have no maa moved by thefe affiidions, £»0W«£ that 
we are appointed thereunto. So that providence mui"t nece/Iari- 
Tjhave a hand in our affiidions, forafmuchas they and we ne- 

ver meet but by Gods appointment of them for us , and of us 
jo the m, fob was fenfible of this, and therefore he falls to blef- 
Img/The Lord hathgiven^ and the Lord h*t h taken , blejfed he 
\ The TJjrne of the Lord. If there were no other reafon but this 3 
noyovex,.itwerefulScientj viz. That God is theabfoiute 


The Dofirineof Providence. 389 

Lord of life and decich • he is the Lord of our mercies and of our 
afflrt^ions, // it fit to fay to him, what deft thou ? David qui- 
ets himfclf by this too, Pfttl.39.9. I w dumb, /opened not my 
mouth bccr.fi (e thoa didjl it. q. d. It fs the Lord, and I have no 
more to fay. So the%hurch, Mic.y.9. 1 will bear the indigw- 
ti;K of the Lord, q d. It is not for me to mutter, to murmure^ 

I have defervedit, and God hath brought it; it is mycrofs, 
and I mutf bear it •, Imuftfitdown quietly and thankfully un- 
der it. 

2. Divine Providence doth not only command the being of ' 
affliction, but qualifies every afflitlion, fo as that it {hall bt a J™tf\^\\tii 
mercy to Vis people. Affliction is like a Sword which can kill affliction thac 
and may lance too,It is like a wind, which can (ink,and may fur- v. msy be 1 
ther the fhip too : Now however afflictions may prove to s««jg cy« 
vil men, yet to good men they are ever for good. P hyfick , 
though it be not good to the palate, yet it may be good to the 
perfon. T^o afflitlion for the prtfent ferns joyous, but after- 
wards it yields the peaceable fruit of right eoujnefs, Htb.lZ. It 
u good for me, faid David, that I ^9as affiicled , for now have I 
kept thy Te ft monies. There is a double way of afflicti- 

One Natural, and this is but to ftrip us of fome comfortable 
good, to ftepin'cwixt us and our delights, to cut down our 
Flower, to cloud our Sun, to darken our Day, tomakeafepa- 
ration 'cwixt a man and his temporal comforts: I delight in a 
child", and death fnatcheth him away; in a wife, and (lie is 
rented from me 5 in a friend, and he is gathered to his laft home 
too. Afflictions thus confidered are like Abimilechs fervants 
who flopped the Wells which Abrahams fervants did dig-, fo 
thofe poor and low Wells of Confolation which our judgments 
and affections have found out, when afflictions come they flop 
them . they are like fome higher Tides and waves which do co- 
ver the (Tiore, and bereave us ofour neareit contentments, and 
fo are an heavy paia to us. 

Another is Infufed: as in the matter of phyfick, there is the 
natural flrength and virtue of every ingredient , and there is 
the fupcradded virtue of the Phyficians art compounding and 
qualifying the ingredients: If the ingredients fliould be given 
Single, and as they arc able to work by their meej: natural abi- 

"" j90 "" ^ Doftrinecf Providence. 

lity, they would quickly tear out the heart of a patient, but be- 
ing corrected and tempered, now they do but drive out the di« 
feafe of the pcrfon. Thus doth God qualifie all afflictions for 
good -, as when he blefTed the waters oi Jordan % they cured 2y^ 
am** of his Leprofie- fo when God tqpppers the afflictions,' 
they (hall cure his fervants of cheirfinful corruptions. Jfa.zj.g 
By this therefore ft. i 11 \he iniquity cf Jacob be purged, and this 
is all the fruit , to take away his fin* \o\x do noteaft gold in- 
to the fire to confume, but to purifie it • nor doth God caft his 
people into afflictions to deftroy, but to better them. E^i^io. 
37. / will caufe you to pajfe under the Rod, and I Will bring yen 
inte the bond of the Covenant. Thou mayeft well kifs that rod 
which hath occafioned thee to fo near, fo great^fo fweet a com- 
munion with God. "Every affliction is either as Jonathans ar- 
row, to inform us ; or as Abigails counfel, to hinder us-, or like 
the Prodigals penury, to recal us •, or like Jofephs look , to re- 
vive our memories ; or [ikzElifia's waters, to deanfe ^ or like 
Davids rod to quicken,&c. 
Providence # 3# Divine Providence doth proportion all afflittions. There is 

Une, By Jmttng it With the particular Exigence and need of 
thejerfon : When it is fuch a kind of phyfick as directly and 
aptly hits with a peculiar difeafe in a man. That if a man could 
open his heart, and his way, andhiscondicon, and then open 
the fecret meffage of the affliction, he nay by obfervation 
of either fay, Here is a difeafe and there is the remedy. Nay, 
he may by Prayer and fearch fee the difpoGtion of his foul in the 
kind and manner of his affliction. Look as the Word when it 
comes in power to the confeience, it delivers the very frame of 
the heart unto it felf, fo when afflictions corne with ablefFing, 
they reveale much by ;heir circumftances, what is amifs or what 
is to be done. They point unto a man his pride, or carnal af- 
fections, or negligence, or hypocrite, or unfruitfulnefs, or dif- 
regards to God,&c. 

Another, 2?/ acccmmc dating it With theftrength of the perfonl 
So the afflictions fent by the hand of fpeciaiProvidence,they are 
not rigors but chaftizements . they are inflicted not according 
to the full defert of him who fuffers, but according to the mer- 
ciful wifdom of him who correctech. Job 34 23* He mil not 


The Dotfrinc of Providence. 391 

lay upon mtn more then is meet, faid Elimt, Ifazy.S. In me*- 
f mr t when it Jbooteth forth jhoti wilt debate with it. I Cor.io.i 3. 
God is faithful, who will not ftiffer you to be tempted above that 
you art able, and he will jm^ke Jon able to bear it. If God brings 
a ftrange affli&ion, he will fupply with ftrangc ftrength. God 
hath a right in all our comforts, and he is the better pood then 
that which is taken away. If he brings a fudden affli&ion, he 
will fupply with fpeedy patience ■, if a ftrong aflfli&ion , then 
with a ftrong Faith : So that though the affli&ton be near, yet 
God will be near toe, and if that be high, his power (hall ap- 
pear in weaknefs. A great affli&ion fhall have a great effect at 
the laft,and fuffictent ftrength for the prefent ; fufifkient, though 
not initantly to alter the affliction, yet to bear it, and to make 
an holy ufe thereof. 

A third, 2?7 moderating the time ; I will net contend for ever, 
faid God, If a. 57.1 6.S0 iPet.r.6.For afe,ifon if need be je are in 
heavinefs, through manifold temptations. Affliction comes 
not but when there is need, and no longer then needs muft (hall 
it abide • it is for a feafon, a feafon is fomc congruous portion 
of time, it is not a perpetual endurance, but a convenient 

4. Succeffive afflittions are, as it were, 4 conrfe of Phyfic^ Succeflirc af- 
prefcribed bj a ftije and faithful Providence : A fingle affli&i- fl'^tions are as 
on doth not make us many times undcrftand,it doth not awa ^n^^ ur r ^ rc ° r f .^ h J" 
us ; as Samuel at the tirit call knew not that it was the Voice of £ /"if" p co . 
God : a man is apt to lay the blame on the unfeafonableneflfe videncc. 
of the air, or other accident?,but when God repeats his ftrokes , 
when he charges afrefh,and enters with a deeper wound, nowthe 
heart ftartles,fomething is amifs-Orhis pride muft be left.this per- 
functory ferving muft be reformed,this rikhinefs, this unprofita- 
blenesses worldlines,&c. God doth never mulciply erodes with- 
out fpecul reafons,and therefore do not vex when Crofles renew 
them elves. If the former crofs had done all the work, anew 
fhould have been fpared. God hach no delight to afflid thee , 
but he wili again, and again repeat his (broke*, rather then thou 
fhouldttonce , and for ever lo fe thy foul. If thou wilt not 
humble thy fclf under lerte affliction, look for grciter ; and 
rrwreaffl dions will befal thee if former do not m*n J thee: It is 
a wife and good providence which will g ve phyiic.v fo long till 
tiie dtfeafe be cured. & 

392 The Dctfrwe of Providence. 

Cafe 5 . A fifth cafe of vexing , U the checking of a good, which might 

The checking be dc fired \ and hath been fought in lawful Voajes , and lawfully 
of a good which t at1( j ^i^f^ p ro y ability -jet onafudden it U turned up fide 

mig he be dclir- i / r • r trr f • i ii 4-i 

ed-and bath "<>wn , there pre/ents itjeljjome hindrance^ or defeatment : The 

been lawfully ca & (in fome refped) may be the Jfraelites , when they fought 
fought. againft the tribe of Benjamin. The grouud was juft; Benja- 

min would patronifea moft abhorred Villany s counfel is asked 
of God, directions given and followed (Judg.20A%. to 26.) 
more then once?, and yet when they come to fight, Ifrael fled 
before Benjamin ; the firft day they lofe twenty and two thou* 
fand, and the next eighteen thoufand : We fhould not in fuch 
In this cafe » a cafe vex and difquietour hearts, for as much as Providence 
confidcr. hath a hand in all this : therefore confider. 
_.. , 1. Vifible profperities are oftentimes checked: Becaufewe 

becsufeweaf- are a P* w this caje togtveand ajcribe the ejfitacy 0} cur good , 
cribe the effica- rather to the means then to God : Probable means do (through 
ey of our good, our corruption) (land twixt God and his glory. Now we think 
tathcrtotbe the Church is fafe, all muft needs go on ; forftrengthandwik 

God? 5 ' * Cn t0 dome > an< * g 00 ^ ^ceis natn b een on our G^e \ an d ^ uc ^ an in- 
fkument hath done much already , how apt ai^ we in this kind 
to caft all the glory, and applaufe , and iflues on fecond agents, 
and God who hath done all is lead of all in our thoughts and 
confidences. So in other occurrences,when means feem to com- 
ply with our projects and defires, and fall in as aptly as we 
would have them, we do not ufually look up above them/ nor 
fee the hand of Providence, thus work ng and forming them, 
but afenbe the main fruit to the ftrength of our own devices and 
contrivances, or to the meer powers of the creature, and there- 
fore God doth difappoint us of our defires , lead we fhould 
difappbint him of his glory. 
Tbismay.hsp- 2. Good ready to be delivered,by the probability of mean«J 
pen to affea us many times flicks in the birth t to tjfeel us with the inf ability 
with the infta- j t ^ s creatures •, that though they look bigg and promife fair, 

Cre«u°res hC ? et 0D a fudden ' the > T M aflde fr0mUS ' like * ^ floatin g t0 " 
wards a point, or an arm of land, you would think it would caff 

anchor there, but the water winds afide, and the (hip pafleth a- 

way^ fo do fecond caufeswith which we deal, they are of a 

ftrange and deluding nature, we think that they will empty 

their helps and afliftances,and comforts, we are ready to feize on 


The Dottrint of Providence. 393 

them , and then like flowers which we purpofe to take in the 
next morning, they are fading ; or like a flock of birds upon 
which we think to fpread the nett,they rife and flie ; fo mutable 
arc ail the creatures, andfodeceiveablcareour fettlemcnts and 
expeditions here below. No man can affure himfelf by an un- 
certain help,of a certain comfort : We are oftentimes mocked 
with the vanity of pretences, and are apt enough to build ftrong 
inferences upon weak and paper bulwarks.to create afTured, and 
much good & contentment, from the fmiles and towardlinefs of 
ordinary probabilities, yet thus we find it,that fair probabilities 
as they do excite in us great hopes, fo they many times flip away 
and leave us to great forrowes ; yet thus much we ger,w*.an ex- 
perience of the creature, and ofourowncompa&tngs, that we 
may not truft,nonot the complements of means,they arc like the 
Pharifees in this, that they fay and do not. He is a wife Chriftian 
thatenjoyesagood, fo as he would want«it, anddefires it fo 
as he would mifs it,and expefts it fo as he may be denyed it. G(xJ ^^ ac- 

3. God would alfo acquaint us hereby , rvith the insufficiency quaint us here- 
of all means, that though they promife , yet they cannot perform by 3 wi:h rhe in- 
fo us any good without his leave : As in marriage there muft futficiency of al 
not only be the confent of the child,but of the parent too,for the mcans * 
child is not fuijuruf.0 difpofe and beftow himfelf j fo is it to the 

fruition of any good, the confent of the parent, ohhefather 
of lights, from whom defcends every good gift , muft be asked, 
or elfc the creature, the means are insufficient, they arc not ab- 
folute in their wayes. 

4. Divine Providence doth many times interrupt probabi- Providence 
litiesjo fee whether we can truft on it in improbabilities : There doth interrupt 
is a double ground , which a man may affume of confidence probabilities co 
that God will do him good. ' lcc " b " h . cr . * c 

^y. . • r . ° 1 . r cancrult in inv> 

One is thzjerentfj and npentng concurrence of apparent means probabilities. 

andwayes; when they do as it were all of them offer their 

fervice , and put to their helping hand , to further and finifh a 

defiredgood; in fuchacafe a mans fpirit is a float, heisper- 

fwaded that he fhall enjoy and take poffeflion, that God will 

now effect it, for he feeth all the means on his fide. 

Another is the fidelity , andgoodnefs, and virtue of Gods pro* 

mife ; which though it benotfo fcnfiblea ground, yet it is 

a more fure , and certain , and heavenly ground ; and it is the 

right and only ground of faith. God hath faid, that he- : 'l be 

E e c 

3 #4 The Dotlrine ef Providence. 

~~mjGoA r that he will be all fhffcio^cy to me , that he will be 
wy exceeding great reward % that he will do me good, that if 
/ acknowledg him in all my wayes % be will direEb me, and if I 
commit my wayes to him r and do good 9 and delight in him, he will 
bring it to pafs % Thefe are his promifes, but improbabilities 
break in, the means fail off and ieem to turn aga nft the pro- 
mifes, or the promifes were putting forth the hand, as it were 
in the means , and^ now pluck it in again ^ I fay, God may do- 
this of purpofe, to ftrein up our faith , to fix it upon promifes , 
that we (hall not receive that good by a way of fenfe, but by a 
w&yof faith , that wefhould caft our feives fagainft all chan- 
ges and 'interpofitions/j upon Gods good words, and prefft 
our good, yet after all this, out of the brefts of Gods graci- 
ous and faithful covenant : And believe it , that mercy taftes 
moft fweet, which comes in the way of Faith , then of Senfe • 
the good which God doth deliver out of a promife to &ith and 
Prayer, infinitely exceeds that which I have fetched in, by the 
cunning of my own head and induftry I well then probabilities 
do many times (brink , that faith may have room to work. 
It is a fine temper to fear when things are probable, and to rruft 
when things are improbable : In an heighth of means^to be low 
and fubmiffive ("knowing that God miy check all) qnd nan 
eftrangednefs of means to be high and depending (knowmgthac 
God is able to command all good unco us.) Providence may 
pluck back a good where the way Teems open, and yet Provi- 
dence can put forth the good , even when the way feems to be 
(hut up and ciofed. 

■ , t ?. The voednefs of a good is 'net alfrayes , whin meant 

The eoodrms J t . e / v> •• •- * it r - r 

is zooa is not * re f Atr * * ut w * ere Providence is gracious : The greatnefs or 
*lwayes where defire , and the fairnefs offecond agents are not fure trials of a 
aacaasare f*ir, convenient eftate ^ that is not akvayesgood for me , which I 
but where Pio- nave noCj j^ which I want, and then it is to be reputed a good 
vidence is jra- w ^ ca ^ ^^ nQC Qn ^ g []/Q p re f enC content, but future fatie:y ; 
when it will prove a good as well as feem a good, it is good in- 
Ttf s mikes us ^ed. g ut f tn | s j touched fo ne what in the fecond cafe. 
ta& out t e ^ Checking of probibtiit* :s ab ml a particular good, doth many 

bath put into ' times canfe hs totak?.. out the fling which feme (in or other hath 
the gooi wc do put into the good which "tor do define ; perhaps either fome former 
iwu% firj or fome prefent corruption needs pardon and healing : If 

7heT>ottrinc of Providence. 395 

tnoufhouidft enjoy thy good and thy fin together, the evil of 
thy Go would marre the fweetnefs of thy good, but God doth 
therefore interrupt thyhopes that he may bring thy good as a 
* A fixth Cafe of Vexing, 1< tht doubtfulnefs tf pofleritj : ^r 6 
When we are to leave a poftcnty behind us in a fort utterly de- Thc ( j oub .7 ul- 
ititutc and unable to ftiift for themfelves • Yet there is no rea- ne f s f Pofte . " 
fon herein to be fo thoughtfem and difquieted if we could rity. 
eve the ftrength and way of Providence : therefore con- In this C af c 
f der • confidcr : 

I. Providence never dies. Behold 1 die (faid facob to 7^" ver dies. 
fepl\) 'But God [hall be with you y and bring you again unto the 
land of ycur fathers^ Gen. 48. 2i. So here, though thoudoft 
die, yet God doth not die, and his care of the creatures is from 
everlafting to everlafting. Child,I can leave thee no riches,yet 
I bequeath thee to God. 

* 2. ^Providence is not retrained to an Age, or te a Perfon, or , 
to one Generation : iVeill bethyGcd, and the God of thy feed af n&nk\tiTit\ 
terthee-, Gen.17. Yea Providence hath exprefTed it felf par- 10 an ^ j or 
ticularly to the Children, as well as to the Parents ; to the Or- to a Pcrfon, or 
phansand Fatherlefs, as well and more then toothers. The v oat Generic 
poor committeth him/elf unto thee, and thou art the helper of the t,oa • 1 
fathrleffe ; Pfal. 10 14. *A father cf the Fatherlejfe , and 
a fudge of the widowes , u £jod in his holy habitation , Pfal. 
68 5. In thee the Fatherlefs findeth mercy : Hof.14.3. Enter 
not into the fieldof the fatherlefs, for their Redeemer is mighty f 
he fhall plead their caufe withthee, Prov.23.TOjl 1. So that be 
it thy Children have neither Father nor Mother, yet God will 
be a Father to them, and if thou canft difcern fomething in that 
word Father to thee, verily there is as much in it For thine* If 
as a Father he can take notice of thy needs and will fupply 
them, He is and will be the fame to thine-. Fathered Ejau 
to Jfaac, haft thou but web/effing? Nay if God be a Father 
to thee, and if he be a Father to thine, he will find a blefling 
for thee, and thine : Pfal. 1 12.2. The generation cf the upright 
fhall be bleffed. 102.28. The children of thy fervants fijall 
continue, and their feed fhall be efiablifhed before thee. Now 
for Children who are unable to (hifc for themfelves, Providence 
doth come in for them. Mofes , you know, was put to the 

Eec 2 Boat 

396 1 'he Dotfrine of Providence. 

Boat before he was able to man theOar,or Sail • he was buc 
three moneths old, and his mother provides him a Coffin ( an 
Ark of Bull-ru(hes) into which (he puts him: What can (he 
expect but that (he anon (hall fee the Rivet to rife, and the 
waves to cover him over as in his grave, but Providence had 
an eye to him j Pharaoh's daughter muft come down to wa(h 
her felfjuft at that time, and at that place, and (lie fpies the 
Ark, finds the Child, and Cod gavefucha piercing Rhetorick 
to the tears of the Babe, that (he is moved tocompaftion t 
and becomes a diligent inftrument of his prefervation and raif- 
ing£W.2.3. to v. io. I will adde another inftance, it (hall 
be in Hagars child, (he wanders in the Wildernefs of Beerfb?ba r 
the water is all fpent , the poor child is caft under one of the 
(hrubs, (he fteps afide as moft unwilling to fee the ckath of the 
child • but Providence ftept in here, god heard the voice of the 
lad y Gen. 21.17. (the very fighs and cries of a poor child get 
up to heaven) and God fent her to a Well of water, and fo the 
child is preferved, v. 19. So true is that of David Pfal 22.9. 
Thou art he that too^ me out of the womb, thou dUfi wake me 
hope, when I was upon my mothers breft, I was caft npon thee 
from the womh, thou art my Gob from my mothers belly. The 
milk of Providence is fweeter andfurer then tbat(?f thebreft. 
So Pfal.iJ* IG, When my father and mo'her forfake me, then the 
LtjrdwiQ take me up,(.i.)God will be a Father unto me,though 
tthey (hould ceafe to be fo, either through an unnatural eftrange- 
raent or civil difablednefle, or irremediable difTolution by death. 
There be four things that a Parent (hould look after for his 
Child , One to make him Gods-, The next, to make him the 
Commonwealths h and a Third, is according to his ability, al- 
low him for prefent and future ; and the Laft is, to refer him 
to Gods Promife , and Providence. Be not follicitous what 
great eftate, what mighty friends, what marvellous helps thou 
mayeft leave thy child ^ but be careful to make him a child of 
God as well as the child of a finful man, and then'be fitting 
and forming, and (haping of him to fome particular calling, 
where he, may lay out himfelf in a ferviceablenefs to the Church 
or State. Btnot thou wanting in thy duty, and God wiH not 
be .wanting itvh is Providence. It is no rare experience to fee 
shfeChildrea of the rich to melt a fair eftate 3 which the Pa- 

The Dottrineof Providence. 357 

rents with much cunning and forecall hare fetled on them to 
raife, and fecure, and perpetuate their names . and on the 
contrary to look upon the children of the poor, yea many of 
them Orphans (caifonely to Gods finding,) to have mounted 
thehigheftftepsof Ecclefiaftical dignity, and to have had the 
higheit Hnfignes of civil honour born before them in this City. 
The which as it is not the leaft prejudice to fuch perfons, fo it is 
an high evidence of a Providence which findes out the molt 
ihiftlefs and neglected perfons. We need fay no more but this, 
Let Parent! take care that themfelves be good, and to make 
their children fo ,• and as their own, fo their childrens rife, and 
furccy, and helps, do depend upon the fame fufficient and faith- 
ful hand of Providence. 

And tl.us having unfolded thefe Cafes of vexing with Argument a-i 
a demonftration of the ftrength of Providence to remove l*' m & nation 
them, I will conclude the Ufe with fome enforcements ^f f ^ uicc ot 
or arguments, fince there is a Providence, why we fhouldnot 
vex. Thus they go: 

1. Vexing abc>a our (Conditions and ijfues is net good, it U Vexing abou: 
finful. For if Contentment be good, then Vexing muft needs our Coodid- 
bebad, yea, it fpringsfrom an ill caufe, which is Unbelief, oronsandltfucs 
Pride, or both. The want of Faith begets our troublefom ls fint ' u " 
thoughts, and the height of fpirit loads us with our many Ve- 
xations. He who will not truft God, muft refolve to be a bur- 
den to himfelf • and if we will not fubmit to Gods finding, we 

muft to our own perplexings. What an high iniquity is this, 
when the child will take the room -and authority of his father ? 
and when Man (hall fret that he is not the difpofeiof his own 
Condition? that I were King in lfrat! ! faid villanous Abf.i- 
hm ; and this is not much behind it, when thou wouldeft correct 
God for his Providence, or dired him how to bertow his hand 

2. As it is not good, fo It cloth no good, Mat. 6.27. fPbick offtdoih n: 
you by takjng thought can adde cr.e cubit to his feature ? ThefctoJ. 
Prophet fpeaksof them who Wearied tbtmfelvnfor very •:-.*- 

nit j ; and fo here, a vexmg for outward matters and iffues, ic 
is a vain difquietmenc, when we have paced the round, and 
tefled thought over thought, and find that this mil not be, and 

thac . 

jpS Tbe Dotlrine of Providence. 

that may hinder, we are ftill as we were, for i Hues flow not 
from thinking, but from Divine Providence^ not from our 
pcrplexings, but from Gods appointings • and let us break our 
hearts with troublefom mufings if we wil!,yet they (hall be ad- 
ditions of our fears, but no furtherances of our defires. 
Is doth much 3 . As it doth no good, So it doth much hurt j Cod fceth us 
hurt, to be a grumbling people, and fuch as will not be fatisfied with 

the goodnefle , and power , and wifdom, and fidelity of his 
providence, and how juftly may he curfe our prefent bleflings, 
who diftruft and fufped him fo for future rnerd? < . n>y it doth 
untune us in all fpiritual duties. We are 1 fuallyat alcfleby 
reafonof the crowd of unbelieving and \ CKtng thoughts, and 
arc in our hearts murmuring, and quarrelling, and fearing, 
when our tongues fay we know not what *i&v and in our 
clofcr performances we feel many juft reproaches, mid fmitings, 
upon the defires of great mercies: Why, thou then wilt not 
truft God for a bit of bread, nor a piece of cloth ? 
We may have 4* y/e ma J ^ aVe otir ^^ds fupp'ted without all this ad')'. 
our needs fup- Matt. 6. ?l. T*k* »* thought y faying , what fhtllVceettt* or 
pltcd without Vvhat Jhatl we drinkj or wherewith jhMl "toe he clothed} V.32. 
all cbis ado. Your heavenly Father knoweth that you have need of all the fe 
things, v. 32i But fee\ ye fir ft the kingdom of God. and the 
righteoufnefs there tf, and all theft things {ball be added unto you. 
q. d. You need not keep fuch a ftir, you need not rent your 
thoughts with care, and doubt, and fufpition for your conve- 
nient fuftenance and provifion. More then meat, and drink , 
and cloth, what would yon have ? and thofe your Father will 
not fail to caft upon you : Go follow your work, look after 
the main bufinefs for heaven, and thefe things fliall be added un- 
to you,thcy will come in of therafelves as fmaller matters into a 
greater bargain. 
If we have 5 . Laftly, If things do be fat ns fyhen we have vexed our [elves 

th?fe thin js into the pofftfflon of them f yet now they are mingled and brac\ifh y 
with v« in & they are not fo deer and faeet. What comes unto us after be- 
mc? Titter to Keving, is fw.ee t and comfortable; but that which we take af- 
u S> ter vexing, lofeth its tafte, neither will it at all have the relifh 

of a mercy, till we have repented of our former unquietnefs* 
He who isimpat'ent till he hath a good, is ufuafly unthankful 
when he hath it : for he who knowes not how to depend, hath 


The Dotfrinc of Providence. 3579 

yet thisleflTon to learn how to blefs. Neithercan I expeft a 
contentment of mind in the fruition, where there hath been an 
unbelieving turbulency in the expectation. Either tl>e grants 
of vexation are no mercies, or elfe they will coil us many pray- 
ers and afcer-tears to make them fo. When the Ifraelites 
would (by all means) have a 2C'*£, they had him, but it was 
in wrath. It is an un v iappinefs when we will force God, as ic 
were, to give us things with a blank, (J.) the things which 
we vexingly ask, but not with a blefling fealed upon them, 
When God muft anfwer, nocour needs, but our humours ; not 
our wants, but our pleafures^ we find ufually fuch mere es to 
prove hard erodes and troubles ; and we fcarce taite a delight 
before we break out into new complaints, fo that by our vex- jj^ i a^omchc 
ing we have procured to our felves a further burthen Manna. 

A third Ufe which I would obferve for our praclife from the Vfe 3. 
Doctrine of a general and fpecial Providence, (hall be this, Wiic apod 
Then In atlthe juffenfions of any promifed and convenient good Providence in 

to wait upon Providence. All our good doth lie in the hand of * li tbc . ' ii P :r> 
_.j r ji!jji° • uonsor any 

Providence, and this hand doth many times prevent us, it nfomued an* 
poures good upon us, as a Cloud oft times on a fudden be convenient 
fides our expectation, poures down the rain upon the earth, and pod* 
many times it is no rhorcbot ask and have : we feel our want, 
efpy a mercy , beg ic , and prefently enjoy it. Yet many 
times Providence is pleafcd to delay us, to put us off, we cannot 
get our good in the means which we ufe prefently : now in this 
cafe I fay, it is our duty to wait upon ^Providence* 

Waiting upon Providence is, An i/limited refignation of our v/akinr^hic, 
(elves and de fires to the feafons or times of Gods %cod pltafurt 
wi:b a continued expectation of fome ^oodpromiftd. 

It is An Ulimitcd reft^n itio*r\ He doth not depend, whole is w Ulitnl* 
drives to be the author of his own good • nor doth he wait ^edrcn^naiita 
who ftcs down his own time. iC If the Lord will yet exercife 
14 my heart, my body, my eftare, my children longer with af- 
M flidions, if he will not yet bepleafed to command my helps, 
'* and deliverances, I delire to it ay his time. Since hedoch 
'' hold on? the mercy which I delire ( though he have promi- 
sed it, and I have asked it) yet Ire.ignup to Inm ftill, noc 
11 onely the donation, but the feafon of my mercy. He is the 
* Lord and rrny do whtt he w^ll, and he is mj Gtd, mj tin>?s 


>4oo The Dcffrim of Providence. 

* f are in his hand. If my fufferings *bc longer, yet my heart 
" (hall be made better • ii my mercies be delayed, yet my God 
"will hear me at length, but for the When, that Heave to 
It is a length- *• It is A lengthened expetlaticx.'^ He who waits at the door 
ned cxpeftad- knocks often, and repeats hisftrokes- if he knock and goa- 
Qflj way he doth not wait. If a. 8.17. IVvill wait upon the Lord 

that hideth his face from the houfe of Jacob, and twill looj^ for 
him. In waiting though God feems not to look, yet we will 
look- though he feems not to hear, yet we will not fpareto 
call ; Patience is even an ingredient of waiting. When you 
would have a mercy from God,you muft not be in hafte (Now, 
or Never), neither muft you be hafty with God. You muft 
not be angry , as if he were flow or backward • but if he 
anfwers not, you muft fit down with quietnefs,and renew your 
prayers, and hearken till he fpeaks. 

Now becaufe this Point of Waiting which refpe&s the times 
of our grants and deliverances is hard to be pra&ifed ( yet it is 
The way of ver y ^ weec anc * comfortable ) I will deliver unto you the pow- 
Providenctin er a °d wifdom and way of Providence in refp.-ft of times 
rci>ca oftimes and feafons, that fo we may frame our fpirits the better to 
and feafons. waiting 

Times do be- I * Times do belong to Providence as veeR 04 iffues. My timet 

lonj to Provi- (&id David) are in thy hands : Not Onely the times of his for- 

denceas well rowes,but the times of his comforts. Therefore he is faid, To 

asiflues. appoint times and feafons , Dan.i 1. 27,29,35. Is there not an 

rial 3 1. 1 j. appointed time to man upon earth > Job 7.1. *All the day es of 

my appointed time will I wait till my change come, Job 14.14. 

So Pfal. icu.ig. The fet time is come. Ecilef 3.1. To eiery 

purpofe under heaven there is a time. Hab.2.3. The vifion isytt 

for an appointed time. To change the times, Ban. 2.21. He 

changeth the times and the feafons. To haften things in time, 

Ifa.60.22. / will haften it in its time. 

Providenc; 2. Providence is pleafed to take time before it doth us go»d\ 

doth take tioie^j^ Though God hath undertaken for us,' though he hath af- 

\xs°ll& <1 ° th ^ ure( * us °^ our m PPty> tnou gh ne doth in^n^ a mercy to us, yet 

*°° ' he doth not alwayes perform it prefently^there may be a fpace 

*twixt his intention, and 'twixt the application of our good. 

For as he is the God of our mercies , fo he is the Lord of our 


The Doctrine of Providence. ao i 

times » he doth many times Delay us, when he doth not pur- 
pofe to Deny us. The Jfraelites deliverance was nor in a mo- 
ment ^ divine Providence was the hand which brought them 
forth, but then they lay in the houfe of bondage many years. Da- 
Wis promifed a Kingdom, but he muft flay for it- yea, and 
in his troubles he is not immediately refcucd, but he is put off, 
as it were, from day to day. Though Paul could be confident 
that he who had and did, now would deliver, yet he was delay- 
ed, and fo long till he even dcfpairedoflife, and had the fen- 
fence of death, &c. 2 Cor. 1.8,9. 

3. *Pr evidence it ill find a time to do us good: Though God providence wti 
doth take time, yet he will not Iofe time, he will be mindful ofhud a cimc n 
his Covenant, he will not forget the cry of the p oor alwayes. do us i 0(X *» « 
Hab.2.3. The vifitn is jet for an appointed time, but at the end 
it pjall fpenk^and not lie, though it tarry, wait for it, becaufe it 
will furely come, it will not tarry. As Providence is an hand 
fullofbleilings, fo it is an hand which is fure and certain. The 
Sun you know hath a time to with- hold, but then it will 
have a time to rife and fhew it felf again. So though God 
doth (to our fenfe) feem to neglect us in the wayes and vigors 
of his Providence, yet he bath a time to anfwer all our prayers, 
to fulfil all our neceflities. Ifa.40.27. Why fay eft thou, ofa- 
cob,and[pea\eft, O Ifrael, My way uhidfrcmtheL'rd, and 
my judgment is paffed over from my God} q.d. Ifrael thinks 
that I will never do him good, that his enemies (hall infalt over 
him for ever, and though he hath folicited help from me, and 
as yet hath it not, therefore I am purpofed for ever to with- 
hold • but thenobferve, v.2%. Haft thou not k»o»» ? haft thou 
not heard, that the everlafting God, the Lord, the greater of the 
ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary } there is 
no ft arching of his under ft anding. V.29. He giveth pow- 
er to the faint , and to them that have no might he increafeth 
ftrength. V.31. They that wait upon the Lord fiall renew their 
ftrtngth; they (hall mount up with wings as Eagles, they ft all 
run, and not be weary, and they fhall wal^and not fair,r. Hence 
that promife, They that ft ait for mt pj all not be afiamed. When 
a man looks, and looks, and nothing at all comes of it, he i*a- 
(hamed for being fo difappointed ; but faith God, I will not 
difappoint you, I will not fail you, you (hall never be afliamed- 

F f f none 


40 2 The Dotfrinc of Providence. 

none (hall upbraid you and fay, Lo, this is your God upoa 
whom you put fuch confidence, O what would he do for you , 
and now he hath done juft nothing. There are two reafons 
why God. will furely find a time toxio us good : " The power 
cf his fidelity: For Truth is the Seal of his goodneffe, and God 
Hfibr.6. w [|j D Q t) na y eanno t be unfaithful. It it iwjcjpble that he/bwld 

lie, " The Honour of his Name : Jf he (hould not keep truth, 
ifhefhouldpromifeonr helps, our comforts, our mercies, and 
command us to look to him only, and yec never come in, his 
honour would be under a cloud : who would think well of him, 
or truft him, or fpeak of his goodnefs. 
The time of 4.. The time of Providence is ahvayes the left time : The 

Providence is cafe (lands thus, There is a good'whxh God hath promifed 
al*ayc*beft. an( j j h ave defied, the only thing in difpute'ewixt me and God 
is the time ; 3 would have my time, and God will have his 
time •, I (hall have the good, and in his time and not in mine; 
Now I fay, That Gods time is beft for Donation. A mercy, 
Por Donation. tnou gh it (hall not come too late, yet it may come too foon •• 
As every good is not fit for every man, fo every time is not fit 
for the enjoying of every good. There are feveral fruits this 
Autumn on the Trees, if you fhould gather them all at once , 
you (hould findanheapofrottennefs in ftead of a ftore-houfe 
of plenty; it is the feafonable gathering which makes them 
tq continue. He who haftens his mercy doth thereby loofe it, 
feut he who can ftay Gods tim<e (hall enjoy his mercy with fweet- 
nefs. Our delires are many times but violent humours, but 
Gods grants are ever wife : As he gives liberally, fo he orders 
his givings with difcretion ^ and though he ftayes long, yet 
his anfwer is ever feafonable. A mercy comes in a feafon 5 when 
it proves a mercy in all refpe&s-, not only when it is a thing 
fuiting with my defire, butalfo advantagious to my perfon and 
eftate-, when it prejudiceth no good which I have pr which I 
want, and yet it doth notably fuit with my exigence. If it had 
come fooner, I had not been ready or if it had (hyed longer, 
I had been damaged : If it had come when Iprefcnbed it, it 
bad.been loft •, and coming now when God appoints ic v I am 
£>referved ; when a mercy comes fo as to preferve me and it felf 
Spthj then it is feafonable. In an acceptable time have I heard 
thu^ in A day offalvmon have I favoured thee, Ih^g.S.DaviA 


The Doctrine of Providence. 403 

had his Kingdom at fuch a time which made more for his quiet 
and fafety. 

And as Gods time is beft in refped of the Collation of any 

outward good, fo it is belt in refpcft of the Re mot ion of any For Ex?irp.ioii 

outward evil and afrli&ion. A Plainer is not prefently to be 

plucked off, leaft the wound grow raw and corrupt again. 

The ikk man faith, Now is the time to go abroad, but the 

'Phyfician prefcribes him yet a longer fpaceof Chamber-impri- 

fonment, knowing, thai" though he feels fomeftrength, yet the 

open air is not yet fit for a crazy body. God doth then remove 

rhe arThdion, when it hath wrought its Errand; and when we 

are indeed purified in this fire, then is it time to be taken out : 

Many a man had returned to his former fins, had he not been 

held off by longer afflictions. There is a marvellous wifdom 

in Divine Providence in difcerning of fuitable mercies, and of 

feafonable times. 

5. The Delay es of Providence are not denials but preparations : The de.'ayes of 
JfGod takes time to anfwer, that fpace is, as it were, the rijie- p ™7* cn " arc 
nrng of thy mercy for thee. Gods delaying of us occafioneth byt'pJ^JJ^, 
divers things, ii cns . 

44 Intimate difecveries of the Spirit : A mans corrupt heartGods delaying 
will (hewitfelfat fuch a time; when the fire is put under the Jo fa occafioq , 
pot , how doth it fetch up the fcum ? One would hardly be-^ 1 ^^ 0- 
lieve that pride, and quarrelling, and murmuring, and ri^ng, Spiri:, 
and impatience, which now difcovcrs it felf in the heart,becaufe 
it cannot prefently have what it doth inftantly expedt • yea. 
what throwes of unbelief, that furely God will forget us becaufe 
he doth not open at once? Yea, what excurfions there are to 
lun after the Creature ? Yea, what imbecillitics of Spirit, that 
we are ready to break afunder, and to fink , and to faint ? So 
that if a man (and perhaps a wel-conccited Chriftian ) would 
take a view of his foul at fuch a time, he might write down ^o 
much of finful corruption, which may call for his forrow and 
reformation all his dayes ; Gcd will not hiip y there's defpaire ^ 
W«] will he net hdp ? there's pride ^ when vW// he help ? there's 
impatlCOCC ; Iwillfek out for other helps , there's infidelity; 
It u in vain to fee k^ to God for help 9 there's athciftical murmu- 
ring. Inward humo* 
^Jnwird humblinrs of the Spirit : For the tender foul may ' c ,n s $ - f ' hc 
1 . Fff2 haply ^ 


The Doffrlne of Providence. 



many times 
doubles the 
mercy by de- 
laying of it. 

haply reflect on it felf, andfearch for the reafon of Gods de- 
laying in its own former or prefent difpoiuions. Whst am I > 
What have I done, that the Lord doth thus abfent himfelf, and 
puts me off from day to day ? Have not I put off the directi- 
ons of his Word thus? the motions of his Spirit thus? Have 
not I delayed him, that he now doth thus delay me ? and per- 
haps fome fpecial corruption may bedifcerned,for which,when 
the foul is truly humbled,then will be Gods time to fend out the 
mercy delired. 

" Stedfaft feedings : It is that which trebles prayer, and 
makes it to flow with ftrength.God delights in Importunity and 
a mercy which we have won from God by the forcibienelTe of 
prayer,it doth taft more like a mercy, and fttcks by us mod. 7 his 
is the child , faith Hannah , for which I frayed^ and the Lord 
hath given me my petition which I asked of him t i Sam. 

" Contented fubmifsions % God doth bydelayings work two 
mercies at once, One, that at length we fhall have the good we 
crave ^ Another is, that he hath in the mean time wrought our 
hearts to his will and pleafurc. That whereas at the rirftthe 
pride of our hearts would take ftomach to quarrel with God 
forhisflownefs, now it can ftoop, and come before the Lord, 
and fay, " Lord, even as thou wilt, fo let it be- I am willing 
"to abound, and I am content to want • if thou wilt bring it 
•'topafs, I defire to blefs thee ^ if not, I yet defire to fubmit 
cl unto thee. Remember, that fome croitings of our defires 
here below, caufeour truftings to fly up to God- and fome 
delayings will leflbn our fiibmitrings and waitings upon his will. 
Now this is ordinary, God will fattsfie our will, when we have 
rtfen fo far as to fubmit to his • and . n I can be able to deny 
my felf, God will not eafily deny my fine. No manftayes 
longer at heaven gates,then he who will be ferved at firft knock; 
but he who can by Prayer and Faith deliver in his fait, and (lay 
till God be pleafed to fpeak, he is the man who fhall fpeed beft ; 
for we are never fit to enjoy Gods Anfwer, if we be too hafty to 
itay Gods Leifure. 

6. Providence mxny times doubles the mercy by delaying it % 
As iris with fome Trees, which are more flow in their bearing, 
but then when they bear fruit, it is with an abounding recom- 


The Dottrineof Providence. 405 

pence for the former backwardnefs; we (horten our mercy ma- 
ny times by haftnmg it, as the Prophet fpake in another cafe , 
For jottr fisme ye fljat V have double ; fo I fay, For your wait- 
ing you (hall feldom be anfwered with a fingle mercy : Though 
it be not lawful for us to give life for time, yet God doth with- 
out any blemifti to him make us amends bo:h for our prayers , 
and for our patience ; Abraham ftaye* a long time for a fon,but 
then when he came, he was a choice child, fuch an one in whom 
nil the nations f the earth fi tuld be blejfid. fofeph would fain 
have been delivered out of priferi when he interpreted the But- 
lers dream, but (laying a while for Gods time, he had not a 
naked, but an honourable deliverance; he was not only taken 
from prifon , but raifrd to be a Prince in Egypt. A man in a 
ficknefs defires a fpeedy exemption, but God oft times makes 
him feel his hand a long time, and by the means,at length gives 
him a double health, one of his body, another of his foul . and 
who would not then ftay and wait for that God, whofe delay- 
ing? are but the treafurings of more mercy for us } 

Now what (hall I (ay more to ftir up your hearts to wait on Mo:e Ar _ 
Divine Providence ? Confider with all this, that, memstoper- 

1. That Prom<(es fill tip Providence for them that wait ; fwaie to war. 
They are brefts full of goodnefs, or as a fpring full of water to J hc P">mifci 
derive out abundant mercy through Providence unto waiting^" u P* f0V1 ~ 
perfons. What a harpy condition is a good Chriftian in? for t h atwa j ; , 
cicher he hath enough in hand, orelfe if the good be delayed , 

it lyes furefor him in the Promifes. //a. 64.4. Since the be- 
ginning of the world men have not heard nor perceived by the 
ear, neither hath the eye feen, OGod, befides thee, what he hath 
prepared for him that Waiteth for him. Ifa.30.18. 'Bleffedare 
they that wait for him. 

2. The I'remifes have farely opened themfelvet to themwhoTht P.omifes 
waited: Ifa.25. 9- E\this Is car God, we have waited for ■baveiurely 0- 

him and he Kill fave us. This u the Lord, we have waited for P c . nca :hQn )' 
mm, wewtU be glad and rejoice tn his jalvttion. And what ^ ho h avc 
wilt thou have more ? Thy God doth evenwaittobe graci- W aitcd. 
ous oiito thee • he doth, as it were, watch the fitteft time for the 
beft good, and will certainly perform it. Thou mayelt by im- 
patience hinder thy good,and trouble thy own foul, but the bed 
way to reap is to wait till the harveft,till that feafon comes. 


406 " The Dottrine of Providence. 

Vje 4. If there be a Providence extending to afl,and wifely ordering, 

Be concerned and preferving, and fufteining, then we may learn one Jeflbn 
with cur pre- morei v j Zt <j- fa content edjvith our prefent portions and eftates. 
and cftaccsT There are two § reat quarrels which men have. one with God, a- 
nother with their conditions-, and this well attends that, for 
no man-will like hiscondition who is difpleafed with his God O, 
faith one, who can live upon fuch means? astheyfaid The 
land is too firait for us • fo here, Our portion \s not enough, 
would God we had mo're honour^ or more riches, or more 
cafe, or more friends • we are as good as others, and need 
them as much mothers, and would (perhapsj ufethem better 
then others. And thus wc fret away our dayes, either in en- 
vying the greatnefle of other mens eftate, or in the complain- 
ing of our own fhortnefs, any condition Teems better andbig- 
ger then that which we enjoy. 

To frame the g ut t0 reme d v this diflemper, and to frame the heart to con- 
hearc toccn- r j r . 

tentmen: ; con- tepltment » conilder » ;.; 

fider, I- Providence gives to every man his portion : Dan.4.17. 

Providence Themofl highrulethin the Kingdom of men^ and giveth'it to 
jives to every whom foe ver he will. So 1 Sam.2.7. The Lord make ih poor \and 
man bis porta- W4 ^£ n v£. he bringeth low, and lifteth up. One man is in 
a great eftate, another in a low efta te ^ one hath more,another 
hath lefle ; yet the portion of either is from Gcd. Our con- 
ditiens are meafured out not by the ftieng h of our own pru- 
dence, nor by the meer virtue of our own diligence, but by the 
effectual direction and bleffing of Providence. The mafter in 
a family g.ves to one fervant more, to another lefle • nay, the 
father gives a larger eftate to one child then to another. We 
are all thefervants and the children of the great God who is our 
mafter snd father, and we fall not into our eftaces by a fhuffling 
chance, but by the provident difpenfation of a wife God. 
Whatfoever thou haft, whether it be more, or whether it be 
leiTe,it is either a (bower, or elfe the drops of Providence. That 
God who gives to every creature his being, finds alfo a certain 
allowance to fuftein and fupport him. 
The prefent e- z.The prefent eftate delivered out by Providence is enough : An 
ftite ddi.ercd eftate may be termed enough in a double refpedt," either when 

denee ^°- Vi " lt IS a ^ C ^ at wc arc ^'" T ° ^fi re \ l ° c whenit isall that we need to 
Hough defireiln this refpeft that condition w ch we have is enough(*.) we 


The Doctrine of Providence. 407 

need not defire motet^H iving froci and raiment let us therewith be 
content fifth. theApotlle.There b: delircs of fuperfluity.&defircs 
ofconveniency.Gods providence doth not difpenfe an enough to 
that, but to this. The father g ves enough to the child to lup- 
ply his wants, though he gives him. nothing at all to gratifie 
his wantonnefTe and foliy. Once more obferve, th.it we 
rouil diftinguiih of our eftate, either as given unto hi ^ or as 
*h«'ed hyu?\ many a man indeed is caft into nothing and is 
fo far from having enough, that he hath nothing at all Not 
that Providence gave him no eftate, but becaufe he like the Pro- 
digal, hath wafted his ftock in riotoufneflfe or indiligence. No 
eftate wi. L J prove enough to him who trades in a licentiou; 
voluptuoulneflc, or clfe fits ftill in a courfe of lazy idleneflTe. 

3. Every mans pre 'en' part ion given Hnto him by Divine l Trc- O^r pre fent ' 
vidence, is beft. Since the fall every one is t <s£z;er inter me- P ortion &l vcn 
dicum & morbnm, He is a lick and crazy man. Now that diet [^zploii' 
is belt for the fick man, not which his difeafed appetice doth j cncc i s bcii. 
crave, but which his wife Vhyfitian doth prefenbe. It was a 
good mfwerof a heathen (Thymaridfs) when one wifhed un- 
to him, that the Gods would grant unto him whatfoever he 
would have: Nay, Aid he, 1 had rather have the things which 
the Gods (hall chink good to give me. God is a wife God, 
and all beftnefle depends upon a wife goodneife. There is a 
double eftate which miy befall us ; li One isinllcalis, as in 
moeorkfle of Richer, Lands, &c. " Another is in Perfo- 
nals, as in Husband, Wife, &c. Do I abound m Reals, or 
do I want ? have I much, or have I little ? all is bed • Doth the 
Patient, by the prefcription of his Galen , cat ? that is bell: ■ doth 
hefaft? rhatis belt ; doth he labour /that is belt; doth he re- 
create himfelf? that is belt. 

That is beft which is firteft, not which is largeft : Were you 
to buy a (hoc for your child, one of thelongeft fize were not 
belt, chough it be greatcft. That condition which fuits my 
mind, ! ell fits me, which I can weare with molt ferviceable- 
nefs to Go i, that, that is beft \ f t as all good, fo the degrees 
of good do coniift noc in an abfolute amplitude, but in a iuitablc 
conveniency. O rhat I had greater means 1 faith one j and yet 
a man who can walk in his cloak may perhaps (tumble in a long 
gown • thou who canft ferve God in a moderate eftate, might'it 


408 The Doftrine of Providence. 

perhaps trip in an embroidered condition ^ a plain coat will 
keep the child warm, when the laced coat may make him proud 
andcoid ; it is a difficult thing to bear every eftate. A man 
knowesnotthefecretweaknefsof his own heart; as it is hard 
in a fhort eftate to be quiet, fo it is not cafie in an high eftate 
to be humble. Greatnefs of eftate, isaftrong inducement to 
pride •, and is it not better to row in a narrow river, where the 
boat is able to deal with the ftream, then to thruftit into the 
wide fea,where every wave may burft it afundcr, or fink it?Sorne 
want is good to make us remember God, but many a man who 
hath broken into an high fulnefs, hath eafily forgotten his God, 
and quickly loft his foul. <c Again for Perfonah, Providence is 
eminent in this condition too, Sometimes it brings a good 
husband and a good wife together •, fometimes a wife Abigail 
and foolifh 2%abal& proud & froward and ill-natured husband, 
and an humble, meek, and amiable wife together, and fo on the 

This is a ftrange working this, that God fhould link perfons 
fo contrary into the deepeft fociety of union^ and many com- 
plain of this as their burthen, of which they {finful/y) defire 
to be rid. But all this is belt, not that any finfulnefs in husband 
or wife is good naturally, but that God difpofeth of thefe con 
trary natures for good : the evil qualities of either married par 
ty.docaufe more humbling, more praying, more circumfpefti 
on, more indignation againft thofe fins. 
^f e 5» If there be fuch a Providence of God which is full of power 
Let us apply tQ jifpof^and alter, and help, and fuccour, and alfo of wif- 
thew?y«of ^ om t0 mt c ^ e P eculiar ' feafons of all fuitable good for us 5 and 
Gods Proii- alfo of fidelity and truth, to deliver the fame out wnto us.Then 
dencc. • let us be advifed to Apply our /elves to the way a ef Cjods Pro. 
vidence; as ^c£ fa id to his fons , GV*. 421.2. Why lookje 
one upon another , / have heard 'hat there is corn in Egypt ^ fo 
I fay here, why do we ftand in an idle contemplation of our 
own neceflities, why do we content our felves with the feelings 
and complainings about our exigences , we have heard that 
there is fufficiency in Divine Providence ? There are fome things 
which God alone doth , and that there is no concurrence of 
man ; as in the works of 'Creation and Redemption, they were 
intireandabfohjte, God was in them alone -, but there areo- 


jhc Dottrine of Providence. 4©0 

ther things which though God will do, yec he expefts and re- 
quires a motion from us too • as in the works of Providence, 
though Cod hath undertaken all our fupplies and comforts, yet 
we mull be working, we mull not lie in the ditch and think that 
a God help me, is enough • but as Jeremy in the dungeon, 
though he were not able by hisowriftrength to get out , yet 
when they lee down cords and rags he put them under his armes 
and fo got forth ; In like manner, chough Providence doth 
blefsus, yet we muft fervc Providence • though all our helps be 
from Providence, yet we muft put forth our felves to the wayes 
by' which the fame Providence will do us good • though there 
be a fpringof water , yet we are fo wife as to carry our veflels 
unto it. 

Now becaufe this is a Point of much confequence, give me P 11 ^, 10 "* r 
leave to prefenbe fotne directions for the application of °^\i^ x [ t \ s ^%Q 
felves to fuch wayes by which we may find Divine Providence c he wayes of 
to be a blefled and comfortable Providence unto us. Providence. 

I. If we will enjoy the good of Providence, JVe muft- ^ Wc muft ufc 
me am. You know that Jacob had a fingular promife that God cbc meins * 
would go with him in his journey, and that he would bring 
him back again to his fathers houfe •, yet at his returning, hear- 
ing of his brother Efau and his armed men (who might have 
interrupted his fafe pafTageJ he gets him to God by prayer and 
yvreflles with him all the night ; he fets upon God firit , and 
then upon the means bow to fecure his paflage, he fends pre- 
fentt unto his brother as fo many Ambafladors to treat with his 
rough fpirit, and to ingratiate himfelf, and he orders and mar- 
fhals the droves of cattel, and God blefled the means fo ufed 
for his peace and comfort • i Chron. 1 9.12. If the Syrians be 
tooftrong for me then thou [halt help me, and if the children of 
Amon be tooftrong for thee, then, &c. V. 1 3 . Be of food courage, 
and let us behave our f elves valiantly, for our people, and for the 
Cities of our God, And let the Lord do what is good in his fight. 
Ckrifl himfelf hath fet us this leflbn by his own pra&ife, 
when the Divel tempted him to caft himfelf down from the pi- 
nacle, he rejected the temptation, and (as it may be conceived) 
came down the (hires . though he had the guard of Angels to 
keep him, yet ic was U all his \*ayes. We muft indeed put our 
felves upon God, but then it muft be in Gods means : if a 

C g g man 

4 1 o The Dotfrine of Providence. 

man be (ick,he muft not content himfelf with this, I have pour- 
ed out my prayer to God who is able to heal me, and hath faid 
that he will do me good, and fo lie ftill in his (ick bed , but he 
muft know that as health is in Gods hand, as in the fountain, fo 
it is in the Phyfitianshand, as in the instrument and means: 
though a Prophet sflures Hezekiah that he (hall recover, yet 
he muft hearken to the counfel of a Phyfitian too, Let them 
take a lamp of figs & lay it for a plaiftcr upon the boyl s and ktjhdl 
recover. And this holds in Spirituals^ well as Teraporals^the 
things which God hath joyned together , no man muft put a- 
funder , v#jfc. the 2nd and the (Means, If a man expe&s 
Heaven, hemaft go with his face thither- ward • if a man ex- 
pects mercy, he muft repent, and believe ; if he expects grace, 
he muft hear and pray for it. Though Solomon iaith well, He 
-who regards the wind /hall not fow t yet it is as true, that he who 
doth not fow (hall not reap. A confidence of means ( whicb 
fets them up as the abfolute and principal commanders of our 
good) is very vile, and yet anufingof the means is that with- 
er which we fhall feldom obtain our de fired good. 
Ob. But fometime5 and in fome cafes no means appear. 
Sol. I anfwer, where God hath gathered up all our good in- 
to his own promifes, there the whole endeavour of the foul 
muft be taken up with faith a id prayer : as fuppofe the many 
conduits which are the paffagcsof our waters, to be ftoptup^ 
orxut off, now tlure is nothing clfe to be done, but to make 
our addreiTe to the fprings ^ fo where God cuts off all fecond 
helps and furtherances , there, as fehofaphat fpake, We know 
not What to do, yet our eyes a* e towards thee. YVe muft caft our 
felves intirely on God, as the three Children , Onr god Js able 
to deliver us; And let the Lord do What feems good in his own eyes, 
but where means are extant, there we muft ferve the Provi- 
dence of God in the ufe of them, 
life onely law- 2 P* we would find the good of Providence , We ntuftufe 
fai and war- on h lawful and warrantable means There aretvvo forts of means 
wnjab'cmcans. to bring about a deflred good. " Some indirett, preternatu- 
ral anddevifedby the temptations of Satan, or thehafte of our 
unbelief, or ftrengrh of finful greedineflfe. " Others are Z>/- 
reft , connatural , and appointed by God, fuch as he com* 
mands, and his word will warrant. This is the way , mll^ in 

The Doctrine of Providence. 41 1 

if. where we fee God going before us, there we may fafely fol- 
low, and if we have his word to warrant, there we may expeft 
his goodnelie to bleiTe and profper. Obferve a fewobferve 

1. god appoints no finfttl means. Evil waves are not the G^d appoint: 
pipes uhich Providence hath laid , but our own corruption: for n ° Gnwl 

as God is good, and promifeth good, fo he brings our good by ,I1 ' arlS, 
good means, all his wayes and methods are anfwerable to his 
nature and will, which is goodnefle it felf, and the rule of good- 
neflfe , he will not have us do any evil that good may come 
thereof, r , a u 

2. He doth not profper or bltffefueh means. When &«**?- °r*n^* % 
plies it felfto£gjpr and A/bur, God did rejeft their confidences [^mcans. 1 
and they (hall not profper in them,?'' .2.36,37. See that place 

and confider it well in 7/4.3 1.2. He will arife again ft the honfc 
of evil-doers, and againft the helps of them that work, iniqui- 
ty* One of thefe you (hall ever find, that when men do ufe 
unlawful means , either God deniech them chat good which 
they feek,or elfe they turn the good which they get into a curfe. 
Saul will refort to the Witch af Endor, to confulc his own 
fafety againft the army of the Philiftims, but he had a meiTage 
which brake his fpints, and then a fword after that which cut 
off his life. Ahab is fick for Naboth's Vineyard, he cannot gee 
itbyfaleand exchange, and therefore he will have icbyfalfe 
accufation and murther , but then the Prophet meets him , 
I King. 2 1 . 1 9 Thus faith the Lord haft thou killed and alfo taken 
pojfejfion? in the place Where doggs lick^ the blood of Naboth % 
/hall doggs lick^ thj blcod, even thine. And Chap.22.38. This 
was fulfilled on the King, and They wa/bed his charet 9 and the 
degges licked ftp his blood, according to the word of the Lord 
which he fpakr: (jtbazi bath a bufie covetoufnefle in his heart, 
he will be nking, though his Mailer holds off, and he longs for 
a talent of filver, and two changes of raiment-, and all this 
with a lie, Behold there are come to my CM after from Mount 
Ephraim two young men of the fons of the Prophets-, Well, he 
gets the filver and the raiment, and with them a Leprcfie which 
clave to him and hi* feed forever, 2 King 5,2227. All unlaw- 
ful wayes are hedged about with curfes ; unjult gettings are like 
fand, dafp a handful of it, it will prefently flip away ; though 

Ggg 2 we 

4H'*« The Dotfrine of Providence. 

we bring it home, yet God will blow upon it y Hag. 1,9 .(.#.) He 
will blait and (brivel it as the malignant wind doth, even, the 
bearing and hopeful plants. Do, go and defraud the labou- 
rer, but That filver which thou toithhrfdeft, (ball cry out agaitft 
thee as a ftitnejfe, and /hall eat thy flzjh, Jam 5 . 2, 3 , 4. Do, go 
and by lying, and ufury , and bribery., and cofenage pile up 
even treafures of gold, but being treafures of wicked nefle, toey 
(hall be curfed with confufion and ruine. *As the Panriige 
Jitteth on eggs and hatcheth them not • fo he that getteth riches, 
and not by right y {bait leave them in the mldfl of his dtjes, and 
at his end (hall be a fool, Jer. 1 7. 1 1 . So true is that of Solomon, 
The way of the kicked fi tU notprofper, and he Who mikes hafte 
to berich t /hall not be innocent, Prov.28.2c, 22. 
G&Jswayes 3. God( wayes eneiy are the wayes of bleffingani emoying-i 

oaely arc the vVe may fay of the means appointed by him, what 7^- faid to 
wfyiofblcffinj^^hgnhe did fmell his raiment, See, the fall of my [on, 
•*d copying U j Sthe [ me i f a fi e U which the Lord hathHefd, tketfo'r* 
God give thee of the deft of heaven^ and the (atmffe of the earth 
and plenty of corn and wine, Gen.27.27,28. Where thou feeft 
Gods prohibition, thou canfl: not there expeft Gods bleifing i 
but that way is ever hopeful where a command begins it, and a 
promife ends it. In all lawful means God ihnds at the entrance 
with his Precept and at the liTue with his ^ ^ W, D > g-iod and 
veriljthou Jbalt be fed,Vk\ 37.3. Be it thac the means wh-ch 
thou ufeft to bring about thy good, are not in the eyes of men 
fo likely, nor in the pradtfe of them lb commonly ufed, yet if 
God hath fealed them by his word, either thou (h It have the 
good which thou defireft ; or elfe this comfort, that thou haft 
not put forth thine hand to iniquity to procure thy comfort. 
God promifeth David & kingdom, Saul who then pofleflfed it, 
fought his life, and fails into Davids hands more then once, Be- 
1 $101,2,4,4. hold the day (faid David's men unto him) of which the Lord faid) 
J will deliver thine enemy into thy hand : But he faid, The 
Lord forbid that I fhwld di this thing unto my M fie* tve Lords 
anointed Jq flretch forth mine hand again ft '-him . q. d„ it is true 
God hath promifed methe kingdom after him but he hath not 
warranted this way of Wickedneffe to be my means to get it. 
And fo he holds off Abifbai in 1 Sam. 26. 8,9. And after all 
l^Dwid is brought in a righteous, and loyal, and obedient 

TBc Doctrine of Providence. 415 

way to enjoy the Crown , and to rule after his own heart, 
Prov.3.6 In aH thj wayes acknowledge him, anoihe /bill dt- 
reel thy paths. The means which we wickedly take, are fome- 
times more quiGk and fpeedy, but then they are furely danger- 
ous ; but the means which God appoints, though they may be 
fometimes flow, yet they are furely comfortable. 

3. If we would find the good of Gods Providence,then tV* mufl ^ wc mc}x \& 
get ourhearts to be upright I am the Almighty God (or the God H.nd the jooJ 
of All-fufficiencie$)tfrtf/^£f/'0>'f me y a*d be thou perfrft.faid G')d of ProviJcncf, 
to Abraham, Gen 17. i.q. d. I am Infinite Goodnefle,and am " c mu & bc 
ab!e to do chee any good ^ lean bring upon thee any needful u P r ' s " 
blefling and hinder from thee any hurtful evil, and take off 
from thee any uncomfortable crofle, a nd all this 1 will do for 
thee, if thou wilt walk uprightly before me, fob 22. 21. Ac- 
quaint thj /elf with God, and be at pe.ice , thereby good (hall 
come untotkee,v. 2z. Receive, I yray tlce,the I aft from his mouth, 
and lay up his words in thine heart, v.23. Jf thou return to 
the Almighty^ thou /halt be built up, thcu floa't put away iniqui- 
ty far from thy Tabernacles, v 24. Thou ■halt lay up gold as 
da,'} , and the gold of Oph'n ,as the ft ones of the bro kj v 35 Tea, 
the Almighty [b ill be thy dfencc y and thus /halt have plenty of 
fiver. V.26. Then thou [b tit hive thy ddigh; in the Almigh- 
ty, and Jbalt life up thy face unto God. V. 27. Thou /halt 
make thy prayer to him, and he /ball bear thee, and t hou /bait pay 
thy vowes. v 28 Thou /bait alfo iecree a things and it /ball be 
eftailifbed unto thee, and the light fl?\ll /bine upon thy wayef. 
1(^33.15. He that wa/k^thrighteou/ly, and fpea^eth upright- 
ly. V.I 6. Hi lb til dwell on high ^ his place of defence , /b all 
he the munition of rockf y bre id /ball be given him, his waters 
fball be Cure. You fhall rind Providence fpreading it felf for 
the Upright. The eyes of tie Lord run too and frt throughout * Chron.i5.p; 
the whole earth, to fbew himfelf ftrong in the behalf of them 
yrhofc heart is perfrft or upright towards him » faid Hanani to 
King Aft. There is Strength for them, Prov.io 29. There is 
Gltdnefs for them, Pf4l.9j.11. Thereis Light in darkjeffe for 
them, Pfal. 1 2. 4. There is Sure dwelling for them , Pfal. 
140 13. and 'P'ov. 2. 21. Nay Every goidt'rvg is for them, s 

P/4/. S4« 1 1- If a man hath a crooked heart, and in hyp >cnti- 
caJheart, that he Will have an heart, and an heart, his heart is 

not . 

414 The Doffrine of Providence. 

not fi ngle and plain before the Lord, he doth not love, nor be- 
llow himfelf intirelyonGod, but will obferve him meerlyfor 
his own ends, and will make a divifion in God himfelf, that he 
muft tolerate fuch a lewdneffe or wickedneffe, and then he will 
be for him in any other command. I fay when the heart is fo 
full of fl awes and fecret rottenneffe that as the feroes fpake half 
in the language of Jfhdcd^nd half in th« fewijh language fo 
the heart is half for God, and half for fbme worldly or fleshly 
luft, nay and perhaps the better half is for thefe $ how juft is 
it with God to deny his gracious power, and his gracious de- 
fence, and his gracious comfort, and his gracious help to fuch 
a perfon, and to leave him in theWefilngs of Providence, who 
leaves his God in the fincerity of his affe&ions. How canft 
tboii exped Gods hand, who wilt not give unto him thy heart? 
and why (hould he bleffe thee,who wilt make all Gods blefiings 
but to ferve againft him ? If thou wilt not be a faithful fervant , 
what reafon haft thou to think that he will be a good Matter ? 
Therefore this do , if thou wouldft find God for thee, then 
find thy felf to be for God; the righteous (hall be bleffed, and 
not forfaken; the land of uprightnefle is impaled with the 
arm of God, and watered with the (bowers of Heaven. No 
good heart hath found God otberwife then a good God ; but 
the hypocrite, as he hath a flaw in his heart, fo he hath a moth 
in his eftate^ though he hath fome rejoicing, yet it (hall be 
ftiort, for God will not lay out himfelf for h.m wholayesout 
himfelf for fin. 
Getandexer- 4. If we fhould find the good of Gods Providence, Then 
cftcFai.b. ty e muft get and exercise Faith Faith is the eye whih fees 
our good, and the hand into which God delive sit. You 
know that the Covenant of Grace is a Banner of mercy dis- 
played, there is not a kind or degree of convenient good which 
is not infolded therein, and Faith is the arm which carries this 
Banner. It is like that great Vein which lies at the Liver^into 
which all the blood doth empty it felf, fo Faith i' the great 
Grace of the Covenant, unto which God hath promifed to dif- 
penfe all our mercies. All the promifes look towards Faith, as 
the faces of the Cherubims did toward the Mercy feat. As Cod 
anfwered ^Abraham when he intreated for l(hmael y that 
Jfimael might live in thy fight 1 [aid God y I will makf of him a 


The Dottrine of Providence. 4 1 5 

great nation , but my Covenant will 1 ejlablifh tviib ljaac , 
Gen. 17.20. So chough God doth caft many good thtngfl even 
upon evil men becanfe they are his creatures, yet the Believec 
he hath the fpecial grants of aflured and fweeteft mercies. Nei- 
ther is there any better or furcr way to enjoy our good , then 
byFaithto truftupon Godforit. FZW.37.39. Tht Jaivtti* 
on of the righteous i* cf the Lord y he is their ftren^th in the time of 
trouble. V.40. And the Lordfljalt help thtm and deliver them f rem 
the wicked, and favc them becaufe they trufi in him. It is 
eahe todemonftrateuntoyou , the yieldings of Providence in 
allrefpecis unto Faith. 

" Removing cf evils arid hindring of them : Thefe are acti- 
ons of Providence, and then you know it is faith which hath 
found deliverances (our fathers trufledin thee, and thoadidfl 
deliver them) and it is Faith which hath got hindcrances, (.#.) 
Gods Providence to hinder attempts. Ht^ekjah did truft in 
tbe Lord his God, and the Lord hindered Senacberib's enter- 
prize, and turned him back to his home again. 

M T refer vat ion is an other ad of Providence, which whether 
you take for fafety of our perfons, or the luftaining of our per- 
rons by cloth and meat- in either refpeft Faith rinds Provi- 
dence good for it : No better way to lecure our perfons, then 
by Faith to commit them toGod^and he is fure to be fed who is 
able to believe : Every believer may fay as Jacob, Gen. 48. 15. 
God which hath fed me all my life long unto this day. Yea, and 
that promife of perpetual finding (Htb.i$.$. He hath [aid, I 
trill never leave thee nor fcrfake thee) is the portion of Faith. 
Now wouldit thou haveany good from God ? then , as he in 
Jebofiaphattctfe, Believe, andyejlall be ejlabHjhed; if thou x Chro.i»,»o 
wouldit get a blcfllng, get Faith. Go unto the Lord as Jacob 
did and fay, OLord, thou did it fay, That thou wouldft do 
megood, thy go;d Word hachcaufed me to apply my heart 
only to thee ; thou art the All-fufficicnt God,and full of good* 
nefs and truth , I defire thee for thy mercy and truths fake, to 
perform and remember the Word upon which thou haft caufed 
me to hope: Ah 1 be thou the God of my mercies and of my 
comforts- OLord, I am notable to command the lead blef- 
fir.gtomyfelf, but mine eyes arc towards thee, I reft on thee 
lo be my God, my portion, myhelp,my ftay, my deliverance, 


4i 5 Ttoc Doctrine tf Providence. 

my comfort, my good which thou haft promiled, and which 
now 1 crave. Do thus by Faith, put it on the Lord, nay, put 
the Lord to it, (hew him his own hand, let him know that he 
hath undertaken for thee , and thou art his , and on him 
wilt thou ft ay thy felf. Say, 4< O Lord, whether (houlda 
V Child go, but to his father ? and whether fhould a Believer 
a go, but to his God > If man promifeth unt.o man, it is thy 
€t command that he perform it, though it be to his lofle,and 
c 'it is his honour to be faithful • Now thou art truth it felf, 
ct who haft promifedandcar.fi: not lie, nor deny thy felf •, Lo, 
cl Lord ! is not this the word which thou had faid ? haft thou 
ce not promifed every good thing, and this in particular ? and 
" thou knoweft I reed it, and do defire it for this end, that I 
'< might ferve thee better- I take thee at thy word, commend 
" my cafe to thy good mercy, and will reft my felf on thy wif- 
*' dom and fidelity, and do befeech thee for thy Covenants 
<l fake to biefs me. In this reft and quietnefs (hall be our Sal- 
vation and ftrength ^ and no way like this to get God to open 
his hand and to work for us. Whereas unbelief (huts up hea- 
ven, Faith opens it, God will not do good to him who makes 
him a lyar- but if we can by Faith give glory to God, it 
(hall be a name of joy and praife to him to do us any 
good aiTuredly, with all his heart, and with ail his 

5. If we would find the good of Providence, Then we mufl 
Be dilijcm in^ y e faHg ent i n 0Hr Callings. The bread of Idlenefs is neither 
your cillin^ fwect nQr fufe . ^ idhfoul fballfufr hunger, faith Solomon. 
Prov. 1 9.1 5. Even zs4dam in the ftateef Innocency was to drefs 
the Garden ; and now it is impofed on all,by the fweat of their 
brows to eat their b ead. As in an army the General appoints 
every fouldier to his proper pi .ice and fervice, and "there to 
ftand and a& j fo hath Gou depgned all men to feveral im- 
ployments, one to be a King, others to be Minifters, one in 
this kind, another in that kind of life; and all, both .to pre- 
ferve fociety, as alfo to fuftein themfelves. So that the plan- 
tation of particular callings is from Gods providence. Hence 
I Cor. 7. 1 7. As the L rd h<*tlo called every man Jo let him walk* 
Again, as God hath limbed out particular callings of life, fo 
he hath injoyned induftry in them. You know when an Arti- 

The Detfrineof Providence. 417 

ficer contrives- the variety of whceles; one greater, another 
lefTr^ one above, another below ; all this Artificial compoli- 
tion is for motion : So, the feveral forms of mens calling* they 
are to be managed with action and labour, 1 CV.1.17. We 
are to walk in our callings. Eph.4.28. We are to work in our 
callings, Let him labour^ working \tith his hands the thing WHch 
is good. 2Thef.3.i2. Exhort them that are fuch, (a.) thofe 
that would not work, v.i o.) and command them bj our Lord 
Jfftis Chrifl y thit with cjuietnefs they wcrl^ and eat their own 
bread. Yea, and God hath undertaken for many bleflingsto 
them who are induftrious and diligent in their callings. Frov. 
10.4. The hand of the diligent maketh rich. I 3.4. The foul 
of the diligent ftaU be made fat. 12.24. The hand ef the dili- 
gent [hall bear rule. 21. 5. The thoughts of the diligent tend 
only to plenteou r nefs. Yea, and God hath threatned the idle 
life with poverty, with fliame, with penury. As he hath not 
promifed the idle perfon a bit of bread, fo he hath commanded 
to give him noihing,2 Thef.$.io.Thu we commanded you, that if 
any Vrouldnot work, neither Should he eat : So then,ifweexpeft 
any good from Gods Providence, we muft be in our callings % 
and diligent in the duties of them. Thou muft not fay, Well, 
God is All-fufficient , his providence is ample and active, 1 
have nothing, and I will do nothing; God will take care for 
me, therefore I will fit ftili, and fleep, and play, or beg, andib 
I will live. Nay, an idle life, and a believing heart are far e- 
noughafunder,- to live by Faith is to live upon Gods promi- 
fes ; but God is fo far from promifing any good, that he threa- 
tens the idle perfon exceedingly. Idlenefs is that which caufeth 
God to forfake our bodies, and the Divel to poflef* our fouls. 
No man hath lefs Means to preferve the Body, and more Tem- 
ptations to infed the Soul then an idle perfon 

Objett. But will fomc fay, We are not able to work, and 
then are we debarred from all good from Divine Provi- 
dence ? 

Sol. I anfwer , There are divers forts of difablev 

11 SomeN'tural; as old age, which hath devoured our 
ftrength, and frith fcarce left life enough to keep up our life. 
For thofe who have laboured but now cannot, Providence ftirs 

Hhh up 

4i 8 The Dotfrine of Providence. 

up pity and the bowels of charitable companion to relieve and 
fupport them ; and hath provided their table, and lodging, 
and flay in the houfes , and hearts , and hands of the able and 

<c Some Accidental^ as when the inftruments ofhbourby 
fome accident are taken away. The Souldier in the War loieth 
his arms, and hands, and leggs, he can only look upon what 
he fhould do, but is not able to do what he would, Now Pro- 
vidence here again hath commanded arms of help to them who 
are elfe every way helplefs. 

" Some Voluntary ; who have integrity in their limbs, and 
marrow in their bones, but lazineflfe in their /pints* They 
are able, but not willing-, like the Drones which foyft into 
the Hive and ftealaway the fweet provifions of the laborious 
Bees. Sodothefe, live unprofitably and fuck only from the 
fruits of the diligent. God hath provided the Magi- 
ftrate to relieve thefe with a whip of Correction, and an houfe 
of; Labour. 

Obj. We can get no work. 

Set. i. Why did you put your felf out of it? you had em- 
ployment, but any fervice is too much to an evil and idle 

2. Perhaps you did much work with one hand, and did over- 
work with the other : There was a falfe finger in the work h 
and verily it is rare to find a theevifh nature, a pilfering hand , 
very far from a lazy, and idle, and flothful difpofition. Weil 
then, be you doing, ifyouexpecl; that God fhouid be doing: 
thruft not your felves out of the way of his Providence ; to thy 
fhbp again, and to thy needle agiin, and to thy labour again 
if thou wouldft be fed and clothed. If thy heart be hone ft ^ and 
thy hands painful, and thy defires moderate, and thy foul be- 
lievirigi God will fo water thy labours with his biefled provi ■ 
dence, that thon (hale have fufficiency, though not magnifi- 
cence ; enough (hall be thy portion all thy dayes. 
Zffe 6. . If there be a Providence which do:h wifely difpofe all things, 
Let us quiet t nen tn j s ma y y et leflbn us to jj)*iet o:ir [elves mder all the in- 
°{j rf h cl, [ sum ! ™ juries which light upon us in this life. 'David Was once in a 
which ^"oi 8 reat ft raii Y w ^ en n ^ s own f° n turne d Traytor and purfued him 5 
•asi* tjifc life, and thai which might add bitternefs to his forro w, was this,thac 


The Dotfrine of Providence. 4 1 9 

Shimei barks againfthitn, and reproacheth and raileth a: him : 
Aid thusfaidJ'A/iwfi when.hecurfed David, Come out , ame 
out ^thcu bloody man, then man of T> elial , 2 Sam. \6.J. How 
doth David take this > So, Let him curfe, becaufe the Lord 
hath /aid to him , Curfe David, who jhall thin fay to him % 
wherefore haft thou dene fo ? In like manner {hou!d we incline 
our hearts, like the rocks, to an unmovednefs when tie waves 
of injurious tongues do fplit themfelves agair.lt us : We fhould 
huveaneyetoGodsProvidencein them ; they could notbefal 
us without the permiffion of Providence. If any perfon with- 
hold his favour from us , if he doth beftir himfelf in our dif- 
grace, ifhefeeksour hurt and prejudice- though the perfon 
fins in it , yet we arc to look higher then the (tone that is 
thrown • we are to have an eye even unto heaven : God hath 
many leflbns for us even chrough our injuries and re- 

I. To companionate t^e bitter ftomachj of tricked perfons , 
and to pray the more for them , who revile and injure 

2. To arm us again ft x ho fe evils vchich they unjuftlj caft up- 
on us : If we be not fo, yet we might have been ^o 9 or may 
be fo as they reproach us -, and therefore now we are to blefie 
that God who hath with- held us, and to pray to him dill to 
keep us , and fo to work out our falvation with fear and trem- 

3. To frame us to much holy Circumfpeclion : What indig- 
nities would malicious tongues fatten onus, having occiiion 
given, who are fo plentiful already in their reproaches mecrly 
from their own grounds of malice? The fouldiers in an army 
arealwayes in the belt and llrideft part of military difcipline , 
when the enemy inrounds them with their weapons and guns.