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growest wiser, that this shall be thy penance: and hold on this course but a little while, and thy appetite will rather choose to be without the drink, than to bear the penance. Do not stick at it; if thy reason be not strong enough for a manly cure, drench thyself like a beast, and use such a cure as thou art capable of: and in time it may bring thee to be capable of a better. And I can assure thee, a bitter draught is a very cheap remedy to prevent a sin. Direct. xv. If all this will not serve, I have yet another remedy if thou be but willing: ‘Confess thyself unfit to govern thyself, and give up thyself to the government of some other: thy wife, thy parents, or thy friend:’ and here these things are to be done. 1. Engage thy wife, or friend to watch over thee, and not to suffer thee to go to the alehouse, nor to drink more than is profitable to thy health. 2. Deliver thy purse to them, and keep no money thyself. 3. Drink no more at home but what they give thee, and leave it to them to judge what measure is best for thee. 4. When thou art tempted to go to the alehouse, tell thy wife or friend that they may watch thee. Even as thou wouldst call for help if thieves were robbing thee. 5. Give leave to thy wife or friend to charge the ale-sellers to give thee no drink; and go thyself when thou art in thy right mind, and charge them thyself to give thee none: and tell them that thou art not thyself, or in thy right wits when thou desirest it. If these means seem now too hard to thee, and thou wilt sin on, and venture upon the wrath and curse of God, and upon hell, rather than thou wilt use them, remember hereafter that thou wast damned, because thou wouldst be damned, and that thou chosest the way to hell to escape these troubles, and take that thou gettest by it: but do not say, thou couldst not help it, for I am sure thou canst do this if thou wilt. Thou wilt lock thy door against thieves: lock thy mouth also against a more dangerous thief, that would rob thee of thy reason and salvation. Saith Basil, * If his master do but box or beat his servants, he will run away from the strokes; and wilt thou not run away from the drink that would break thy brains and understanding?” Direct. xvi. “But the saving remedy is this, study the love of God in Christ, and the riches of grace, and the eternal glory promised to holy souls, till thou be in love with
God, and heaven, and holiness, and hast found sweeter pleasure than thy excess, and then thou wilt need no more directions °.”
PART V. Tit. 1. Directions against Fornication and all Uncleanness.
Though as they are sins against another, adultery and fornication are forbidden in the seventh commandment, and should there be handled, yet as they are sins against our own bodies, which should be members of Christ, and temples of the Holy Ghost, as 1 Cor. vi. 15. 18, 19., so it is here to be handled among the rest of the sins of the senses: and I the rather choose to take it up here, because what I have said in the two last titles, against Gluttony and Drunkenness serve also for this. The same arguments and convincing questions, and directions, will almost all serve, if you do but change the name of the sin: and as the reader loveth not needless tediousness, so I am glad of this means to avoid the too often naming of such an odious, filthy sin, yet something most proper to it must be spoken. And l. I shall shew the Greatness of the sin; and 2. Give Directions for the cure. I. There is no sin so odious, but love to it, and frequent using it, will do much to reconcile the very judgment to it: either to think it lawful, or tolerable and venial; to think it no sin, or but a little sin, and easily forgiven. And so with some brutish persons it doth in this. But 1. It is reason enough against any sin, that it is forbidden by the most wise, infallible, universal King of all the world. Thy Maker's will is enough to condemn it, and shall be enough to condemn those that are the servants of it. He hath said, “Thou shalt not commit adultery. Be not deceived, neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind—shall inherit the kingdom of God. Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. What! know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body: for two (saith he) shall • Read Eph. v. 18.
be one flesh: but he that is joined to the Lord is one spirit. Flee fornication: every sin that a man doth is without the body: but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What! know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you?” (Mark that he speaketh not this to fornicators: for their bodies are not temples of the Holy Ghost; but to them that by filthy heretics in those times were tempted to think fornication no great sin.) “But fornication, and all uncleanness, and covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints: neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words; for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience: be not ye therefore partakers with them *.” “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God".” “For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour, not in the lust of concupiscence, as the Gentiles which know not God’.” “Marriage is honourable, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge".” The abominable, and whoremongers—shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone".” “For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers".”— “Even as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire".” I shall add no more lest I be tedious. 2. “Besides Scripture, God hath planted in nature a special pudor and modesty to restrain this sin: and they that commit it do violate the law of nature, and sin against a witness and condemner that is within them.’ And scarce any one of them ever committeth it boldly, quietly, and fearlessly, till first they have hardened their hearts, and seared their consciences, and overcome the light of nature, by frequent, wilful sinning". Nature hideth the obscene parts, and teacheth man to blush at the mention of anything that is beyond the bounds of modesty. Say not that it is mere custom, for the vitiated nature of man is not so over precise, nor the villany of the world so rare and modest, but 'lefore this day it had quite banished all restraints of this sin, above most others, if they could have done it, and if God had not written the law which condemneth it very deep in nature, with almost indelible characters. So that in despite of the horrid wickedness of the earth, though mankind be almost universally inclined to lust, yet there be universally laws and customs restraining it; so that except a very few savages and cannibals like beasts, there is no nation on the earth where filthiness is not a shame, and modesty layeth not some rebukes upon uncleanness. Ask no further then for a law, when thy nature itself is a law against it. And the better any man is, the more doth he abhor the lusts of uncleanness. So that “among saints,” saith the apostle, it is “not to be named ;” (that is, not without need and detestation.) “For it is a shame even to speak of those things that are done of them in secret.” And when drunkenness bad uncovered the shame of Noah, his son Ham is cursed for beholding it, and the other sons blest for their modest and reverent covering him. 3. And that God hath not put this law into man’s nature without very great cause, albeit the implicit belief and submission due to him should satisfy.us, though we knew not the causes particularly, yet much of them is notorious to
1 Cor. vi. 9, 10.15–19. * Ephes. v. 3–6. h Gal. v. 19. * 1 Thes. iv. 3. See also Col. iii. 5, 6. * Heb. xiii. 4. * Rev. xxi. 8. * Rev. xxii. 15. n Jude 7.
• Saith Boniface (alias Winfrid) of the English Mercian king Ethelbald, a fornicator, Opprobrium generis nostri patimur, sive à Christianis sive Paganis dicentibus quod gens Anglorum spreto more casterarum gentium, &c. hinnientium equorum consuetudine, vel rudentium asinorum more, luxuriando et adulterando, omnia turpiter fedet, et confundat. Fpist. Bonif. 10. ad Perefrid. Salvagus Sarzanensis Episcopus Pauli 5. Jussu visitationem Ecclesiarum Stiriae, Carinthiae, et Carniolae instituerat. Qua peracta, sex omnino Sacerdotes quinon essent concubinarii, in tribus illis Provinciis invenit, cum tamen magna pars ex Jesuitarum disciplina prodiiset, &c. Giraldi Apolog. pro Senatu Venet. p. 165. Moechum in adulterio deprehensum necato: was a Roman law, 12, tab.
common observation: as that if God had not restrained lust by laws, it would have made the female sex most contemptible and miserable, and used worse by men than dogs are. For, first, rapes and violence would deflower them, because they are too weak to make resistance: and if that had been restrained, yet the lust of men would have been unsatisfied, and most would have grown weary of the same woman whom they had abused, and taken another; at least, when she grew old they would choose a younger, and so the aged women would be the most calamitous creatures upon earth. Besides that lust is addicted to variety, and groweth weary of the same ; the fallings out between men and women, and the sicknesses that make their persons less pleasing, and age, and other accidents, would expose them almost all to utter misery. And men would be law-makers, and therefore would make no laws for their relief, but what consisted with their lusts and ends. So that half the world would have been ruined, had it not been for the laws of matrimony, and such other as restrain the lusts of men. 4. Also there would be a confused mixture in procreation, and no men would well know what children are their own: which is worse than not to know their lands or houses. 5. Hereby all natural affection would be diminished or extinguished : as the love of husband and wife, so the love between fathers and children would be diminished. 6. And consequently the due education of children would behindered, or utterly overthrown. The mothers, that should first take care of them, would be disabled and turned away, that fresh harlots might be received, who would hate the offspring of the former. So that by this means the world and all societies, and civility would be ruined, and men would be made worse than brutes, whom nature had either better taught, or else made for them some other supply. Learning, religion, and civility would be all in a manner extinct, as we see they are among those few savage cannibals that are under no restraint. For how much all these depend upon education, experience telleth us. In a word, this confusion in procreation, would introduce such confusion in men's hearts, and families, and all societies, by corrupting and destroying necessary affection and education, that it would be the greatest plague imaginable to mankind, and