תמונות בעמוד
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gieatest reverence. We must "sanctify the Lord of Hosts himself, and he must be our fear and dread.” (Isa. viii. 13.) Even they that "receive the unmoveable kingdom, must have grace in their hearts to serve him acceptably, with reverence and godly fear, because our God is a consuming fire.” (Heb. xii. 28, 29.) When we come to worship in the holy assemblies, we should think, as Jacob, “How dreadful is this place! This is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.” (Gen. xxviii. 17.) Especially when God seemeth to frown upon the soul, his servants must humble themselves before him, and deprecate his wrath, as Jeremiah did, “Be not a terror to me.” (Jer. xvii. 17.) It ill becometh the best of men, to make light of the frowns and threatenings of God. Also when he dealeth with us in judgment, and we feel the smart of his chastisements, though we must remember that he is a Father, yet withal we must consider that he sheweth himself an offended Father: And therefore true and deep humiliation hath ever been the course of afflicted saints, to turn away

the wrath of a terrible God.

2. But above all, what cause have the ungodly to tremble at the dreadfulness of that God, who is engaged in justice, (except they be converted) to use them everlastingly as his unpardoned enemies. As there is no felicity like the favour of God; and no joy comparable to his children's joys; so there is no misery like the sense of his displeasure, nor any terrors to be compared to those, which his wrath inflicteth everlastingly on the ungodly. O wretched sinner! what hast thou done to make God thine enemy? what could hire thee to offend him by thy wilful sin ? and to do that which thou kuewest he forbid and condemned in his word ? What madness caused thee to make a mock at sin and hell, and to play with the vengeance of the Almighty ? What gain did hire thee to cast thy soul into the danger of damnation? Canst thou save by the match, if thou win the world and lose thy soul ? Didst thou not know who it was thou hadst to do with? It had been better for thee that all the world had been offended with thee, even

men and angels, great and small, than the most dreadful God! Didst thou not believe him, when he told thee how he was resolved to judge and punish the ungodly? Read it, 2 Thess. ii. 7-10; ii. 10, 11 ; Matt. xxv!; Jude 15; Psalm i. &c. What caused



thee to venture upon the consuming fire ? Didst thou not know that he is merciful, so he is jealous, holy, just, and terrible ? In the name of God, I require and entreat thee, fly to his mercy in Jesus Christ; and hearken speedily to his grace, and turn at his reproof and warning; to-day, while it is called to-day, harden not thy heart, but hear his voice, lest he resolve in his wrath, that thou shalt never enter into his rest; there is no enduring, there is no overcoming, there is no contending with an angry, dreadful, holy God: Repent therefore and turn to him, and obey the voice of mercy that thy soul may live.

3. The dreadfulness of God, doth tell both good and bad, the great necessity of a Mediator. What an unspeakable mercy is it that God hath given us his Son! and that by Jesus Christ we may come with boldness and confidence into the presence of the dreadful God, that else would have been to us a greater terror than all the world, yea than Satan himself. The more we are apprehensive of our distance from God, and of his terrible Majesty, and his more terrible justice against such sinners as we have been, the more we shall understand the mystery of redemption, and highly value the mediation of Christ.

4. Lastly, Let the dreadfulness of God prevail with every believing soul, to pity the ungodly that pity not themselves. O pray for them, O warn them, exhort them, entreat them, as men that know the terrors of the Lord. (2 Cor. v. 11.) If they knew, as well as you do, what sin is, and what it is to be children of wrath, and what it is to be unpardoned, unjustified, and unsanctified, they would pity themselves, and cry for mercy, mercy, mercy, from day to day, till they were recovered into a state of life, and turned from the power of Satan unto God. Alas! they know not what it is to die, and to see the world to come, and to appear before a dreadful God: They know not what it is to be in hell fire; nor what it is to be glorified in heaven: They never saw, or tried these things, and they want the faith by which they must be foreseen by those that are yet short of nearer knowledge: You therefore that have faith to foreknow these things, and are enlightened by the Spirit of God, O pity, and warn, and help the miserable! Tell them how much easier it is to escape hell, than to endure it: and how much easier a holy life on earth is, than the endless wrath of the most. dreadful God. Tell them that unbelief, presumption, and security, are the certain means to bring their misery, but will do nothing to keep it off ; though they may keep off the present knowledge and sense of it, which would have driven them to seek a cure. Tell them that death and judgment are at hand, and that when they laugh, or sport, or scorn, and jest at the displeasure of the dreadful God, it is posting toward them, and will be upon them before they are aware; and when they slumber, their damnation slumbereth not: but while unbelieving sinners say, peace, peace, sudden destruction will come upon them, as unexpected travail on a woman with child, and they shall not escape. O tell them how dreadful a thing it is, for a soul that is unregenerate and unsanctified, to go from that body which it pampered and sold its salvation to please, and to appear at the tribunal of God; and how dreadful it is for such a soul to fall into the hands of the living God. At least save your own souls, by the faithful discharge of so great a duty; and

5 if they will take no warning, let them at last remember, when it is too late, that they were told in time, what they should see and feel at last, and what their latter end would prove; and that God and man did warn them in compasşion, though they perish because they would have no compassion or mercy upon themselves. Thus let the terribleness of God provoke you, to do your duty with speed and zeal, for the converting and saving of miserable souls.

And thus I have briefly set before you the glass in which you may see the Lord, and told you how he must be known: and how he must be conceived of in our apprehensions; and how the knowledge of God must be improved, and what impressions it must make upon the heart, and what effect it must have upon our lives. Blessed, and for ever blessed, are those souls, that have the true and lively image of this God, and all these his attributes imprinted on them, (as to the creature they are communicable). And O that the “ veil were taken from our hearts, and that we all with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, may be changed into the same image, from glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord,” (2 Cor. iii. 18,) and may increase and live in the knowledge of the true and only God, and of Jesus Christ, which is eternal life. Amen.






GENESIS v. 24.

And Enoch walked with God, and he was not; for God

took him.


Being to speak of our Converse with God in Solitude, I think it will not be unsuitable, nor unserviceable to the ends of that discourse, if I here premise a short description of the General Duty of Practical Godliness, as it is called in Scripture a Walking with God.' It is here commended to us in the example of holy Enoch, whose excellency is recorded in this signal character, that “he walked with God :" and his special reward expressed in the words following, "and he was not, for God took him.” I shall speak most of his character, and then somewhat of his reward.

The Samaritan and vulgar Latin versions do strictly translate the Hebrew as we read it: but the interpretation of the Septuagint, the Syriac, the Chaldee, and the Arabic, are rather good expositions (all set together) of the meaning of the word, than strict translations. The Septuagint and Syriac read it, “Enoch pleased God.' The Chaldee hath, 'Enoch walked in the fear of God.' And the Arabic, he walked in obedience to God.' And indeed to walk in the fear and obedience of God, and thereby to please him, is the principal thing in our “walking with God." The same character is given of Noah, in Gen. vi. 19. and the extraordinary reward annexed; he and his family were saved in the deluge. And the holy life which God commanded

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Abraham, is called 'a walking before God.' “ Walk before me, and be thou perfect.” (Gen. xvii. 1.) And in the New Testament the Christian conversation is ordinarily called by the name of Walking. Sometimes a walking in Christ;' as Col. ii. 6. Sometimes a ‘walking in the Spirit, in which we live.' (Gal. v. 25.) And a 'walking after the Spirit.' (Rom. viii. 1.) Sometimes a 'walking in the light, as God is in the light.' (1 John i. 7.) Those that abide in Christ must so walk even as he hath walked.' (1 John ii. 6.) These phrases set together tell us, what it is to walk with God. But I think it not unprofitable somewhat more particularly to shew you what this walking with God doth contain.

As atheism is the sum of wickedness, so all true religiousness is called by the name of Godliness or Holiness, which is nothing else but our devotedness to God, and living to him, and our relation to him as thus devoted in heart and life. Practical atheism is a " living as without God in the world.” (Ephes. ii. 12.) Godliness is contrary to practical atheism, and is a living as with and to God in the world and in the church, and is here called a walking with God. And it containeth in it these particulars.

1. To walk with God includeth the practical acknowledgment (that is made by the will as well as the understanding) of the grand attributes of God, and his relations to man; that he is Infinite in his Being, that is, Immense and Eternal; as also in his Power, Wisdom and Goodness: That he is the Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier : That he is our absolute Lord (or Owner), our most righteous Governor, and most bountiful Benefactor (or Father): That “of him, and through him, and to him, are all things :” That "in him we live, and move, and have our being:" That he is the fountain, or first cause, from which all (proper) being, truth and goodness in the creature is but a derived stream. To have the soul unfeignedly resign itself to him, as his own; and subject itself to him as our Governor, walking in the awe of his sovereign power; sensible of the strong obligation of his laws, which reason, justice and necessity do all command us to obey. To live as in full dependence on him: to have the first and greatest respect unto him: a more observant respect to him than to our rulers : a more obedient respect to him than to our masters : pendent, tender, and honourable respect to him than to pa

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