« הקודםהמשך »
«« Why hast thou shaken me out, whilo I lay still, and was at rest? “ Cursed Soul wherefore didst thou not abide in thy place, wrapt up “ in flames of fire? Wherefore art thou come back to take me allo “ down to the bars, of the pit? Thou madft me an instrument of " unrighteousness; and now I must be thrown into the fire. This “ tongue was by thee employed in mocking at religion, cursing, swear« ing, lying, backbiting, and boasting; and with-held from glorifying " God: and now it must not have so much as a drop of water to 66 cool it in the flames. Thou didst withdraw mine ears from hear. « ing the lermons which gave warming of this day. Thou foundest oc ways and means to stop them from attending to seasonable exhor« tations, admonitions and reproofs. But why didst thou not Itop “ them from hearing the sound of this dreadful trumper? Why dost “ thou not now rove and fly away on the wings of imagination, “ thereby, as it were, transporting me during these frightful tranf " actions, as thou was wont to do, when I was set down at sermons, “ communions, prayers, and godly conferences: that I might now « have as little sense of the one, as I formerly had of the other? But “ ah! I mult burn for ever, for thy love to thy lusts, thy profanity, " thy sensuality, thy unbelief and hypocrisy.!
But may not the soul answer? ".Wretched and vile carcase, am I 66 now driven back into thee! O that thou hadīt lain for ever rotting 6 in thy grave! Had I not torment enough before? Must I be knit " to thee again, that being joined together as two dry, sticks for the “ fire, the wrath of God may the more keenly burn us up? It was by « caring for you, I lost myself. It was your back and your belly, « and the gratifying of your senses, which ruineil me. How often “ was I ensnared by your ears? How often betrayed by your eyes? " It was to spare you, that I neglected opportunities of making peace « with God, loitered away fabbaths, lived in the neglect of prayer,
went to t'ne house of mirth, rather than to the houle of mourning; " and that I chused to deny Christ, and forsake his cause and intereits " in the world ; and so am fallen a sacrifice to your curled ease. " When at any time my conscience began to awake, and I was fett. 66 ing myself to think of my sins, and the misery I have fel: lince we “ partes, and now feel; it was you that diverted me from thefe 166 thoughts, and drew me off to make provision for thee, O wretched “ flella By your iilken cords of fleshly lufts I was drawn to destruc" tion, over the belly of my light and conscience: but now they are “ turned into iron chains, with which I am to be held under wrath “ for evermore. Ah! wretched profits! ah! curled pleasures! for 66 which I must ly for ever in utter, darkness." But no complaints will then avail. O that men were wife, that they understood this, that they would consider their latter end! . . As to the Qualities with which the bodies of the saints shall be endowed at the resurrection: the Apostle tells us, they shall be raised incorruptible, glorious, powerful, and spiritual, 1 Cor. xv. 42, 43, 44. " It is fown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. It is Cown in “ difhonour, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised “ in power. It is fown a naural body, it is raised a spiritual body."
First, The bodies of the faints shall be raised incorruptible. They are now, as the belies of others, a very mass af corruption, full of the seeds of diseases and death; and when dead, become so nauseous, even to their dearest friends, that they must be buried out of their light, in a grave, there to rot and be consumed: yea lothsome sores and diseases make some of them very unsightly, even while alive. But at the resurrection they leave all the seeds of corruption behind them, in the grave; and rise incorruptible, incapable of the least in
difpofition, sicknefs, or fors; and much more of dying. External i 1. violences and inward causes of pain shall for ever cease : they shall .
feel it no more : yea, they shall have an everlasting youth and vigour; :
being no more subject to the decays which age produced in this life. . Secondly, They shall be glorious bodies; not only beautiful, comely,
and well proportioned, but full of fplendor and brightness. The si most beautiful face, and best proportioned body that now appears in
the world is not to be named in comparison with the body of the meanest saint at the resurrection; for then all the righteous shine forth as the fun, Matth. xiii. 43. If there was a dazzling glory on Mofis's face, when he came down from the mount; and if Stephen's face was as it had been the face of an angel, when he flood before the council, how much more thall the faces of the saints be beautified and glorious, full of sweet agreeable majesty, when they have put off all corruption, and shine as the fun? But observe, this beauty of the faints is not restricted to their faces, but diffuses itself through their whole bodies: for the whole body is raised in glory, and thall be falhi. oned like unto their Lord and Saviour's glorious body: in whose transfiguration not only did his face shine as the fun, but also his rai.' ment was white as the light, Matth. xvii. 2. Whatever defects or deformities the bodies of the saints had, when laid in the grave, occasioned by accidents in life, or arising from secret causes of their forination in the womb, they thall rise out of the grave free of all theft. But suppose the marks of the Lord Jesus, the Icars or prints of the wounds and bruises some of the saints received while on earth, for his sake, thould remain in their bodies after the resurrection; likeas the print of the nails remained in the Lord Jesus's body, after his resurrection; these marks will rather be, badges of distinction, and add to their glory, than detract from their beauty. But howsoever that be, surely Ifaac's eyes shall not then be dim, nor will Jacob halt; Leah ihall not be tender. eyed, nor Mephibofheth lame of his legs. For as the goldsmith melts down the old crazy vessel, and casts it over again into a new mold, bringing it forth with a new lustre; so thall the vile body which lay dissolved in the grave, come forth at the resurrection in perfect beauty and comely proportion.
rruprion, and cated to their folg is raised in 9 pous body : in his rai
Thirdly, They shall be powerful and strong bodies. The strongest men on earth being frail and mortal, may justly be reckoned weak and fecble: in regard their strength, howsoever great, is quickly worn out and consu ned. Many of the saints now have bodies weaker than others; but “ the feeble among them, (to allud, to Zech. xii. 8.) at that day, hall be as David, and the house of David shall be as God." A grave divine says, that one thall be stronger at the refurrection, than an hundred, yea, than thousands are now. Certainly great, and vastly great, muit the itrength of glorified bodies be, feeing they shall bear up under an exceeding und eternal weight of glory. The mortal body is not at all adapteri to such a state. Do transports of joy occa. fion death, as well as exceilive grief uves? And can it bear up under a weight of glory? Can it sublift in union with a soul filed with heaven's raptures? Surely no. The mortal body would sink under that load, and such a fill would make the earthen pitcher to fly all in pieces. The Scripture has plainly told us, that flesh and blood, (namely) in their present frail state, though it were the flesh and blood of a giant, cannot inherit the kingdom of God, 1 Cor. xv. 50. How ftrong must the bodily eyes be, which, to the soul's eternal comfort, fhall behold the dazzling glory and splendor of the new Frrufulem; and ftedfastly look at the transcendent glory and brightness of the Man CHRIST, the Lamb, who is the light of that city, the inhabitants whereof shall shine as the funThe Lord of heaven doth now, in mercy, “ hold back the face of his throne, and spreadeth his cloud “ upon it;" that mortals may not be confounded with the rays of glory, which shine forth from it, Job xxvi 9. But then the vail fhall be removed, and they made able to behold it, to their unspeakable joy. How firong must their bodies be, who ihall not rest night por day; but be without intermillion for ever employed in the heavenly temple, to fing and proclain the praises of God, without wearinels, which is a weakness incident to the frail mortal, but incompetent to the glorified body!
Loftly, They hall be fpiritual bodies. Not, that they shall be changed into Spirits; bur they shall be spiritual, in respect of their fpirit-like qualities and endowments. The body shall be, absolutely, subservient to the soul, subject to it, and influenced by it; and there. fore, no more a clog to its aciivity, nor the animal appetites a snare to it. There will be no need to beat it down, nor to drag it to the service of God. The foul, in this life, is so much influenced by the body, that, in Scripture-Style, it is said to be carnal: but then, the body shall be spiritual, readily serving the sout in the business of heavers; and in that only, as if it had no more relation of earth, than a fpirit. It will have no further need of the now necessary supports of life, namely, food and raiment, and the like: “ They shall hunger " no more, neither thirst any more, Rev, vii. 16. For in the refir
rection, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as “ the angels of God in heaven.'? Then Hall the saints be strong
e mot, chap: she wickedles, when the the light
without meat or drink ; warın without cloaths ; ever in perfect health without medicine ;, and ever fresh and vigorous, though they shall never sleep, but ferve him night and day in his temple. Rev. vii. 15.
They will need none of these things, more than spirits do. They will be nimble and active as fpirits, and of a moft refined constitution. The body that is now lumpish and heavy, shall then be most sprightly. No such thing at melancholy shall be found to make the heart heavy, and the fpirits flag and sink. 16. Where the carcase is, there shall the " saints, as fo mary eagles, be gathered together.” I shall not further dip into this inatter : The day will declare it.' ' ;
As to the qualities of the bodies of the wicked, at the resurrection, I find the Scripture speaks but little of them. Whatever they may need, thưy shall not get a drop of water to cool their tongues, Luke xvi. 24, 25. Whatever may be faid of their weakness, it is certain they will be continued for ever in life; that they may be ever dying: they shall bear up, howsoever unwillingly, under the load of God's i wrath, and shall not faint away under it. “ The smoak of their ". torment ascendeth up for ever and ever. And they have no rest "day nor night.” Surely they thall not partake of the glory and beauty of the saints. All their glory dies with them, and shall never rise again. Daniel tells us, they shall awake to shame, and everlasting contempt, chap. xii. 2. Shume follows fin, as the shadow followeth the body :" but the wicked in this world walk in the dark, and often under a disguise: nevertheless, when the Judge comes in flaining fire, at the last day, they will be brought to the light; their mask will be taken off, and the shame of their nakedness will clearly appear to themselves and others, and fill their faces with confusion: Their shame will be too deep for blushes: but all faces shall gather black ness," at that day, when they shall go forth of their graves, as male, factors out of their prisons to execution; for their resurrection is the resurrection of damnation. The greatest beauties, who' now pride themselves in their comeliness of body, not regarding their deformed fouls, will then appear with ghastly countenances, a grim and deathlike visage. Their looks will be frightful, and they will be horrible spectacles, coming forth of their graves like infernal furies out of the pit. They shall rise also to everlasting contempt. They shall then be the most contemptible creatures, filled with contempt froin God, as vessels of dis honour: whatever honourable uses they have been em ployed to, in this world ; and filled also with contempt from men.
They will be most despicable in the eyes of the saints, even of those -saints, who gave them honour here; either for their high station, the gifts of God in them, or because they were of the same human nature with themselves. But then fall their bodies be as fo many lothsome carcases, which " they shall go forth and look upon with « abhorrence: yea, they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh, Ifa. lxvi. 24. The word here rendered an abhorring, is the same which in the other text is rendered contempt; and Isaiah and Daniel point
follows like to shama;
the ladifquife: ne wicked in
at one and the same thing, namely, the lothfuinney's of the wicked, at the resurrection. They will be lothsome in the eyes of one another. The unclean wretches were neyer to lovely to each other, as then they will be lothloine; dear companions in lin will then be an abhor. ring, each one to his fellow: and the wicked, great and honourable mien, shall be no more regarded by their wicked subjects, their servants, their slaves; than ihe mire in the streets..
Use I. Ot comfort to the people of God. The doctrine of the refurrection is a (pring of confolation and joy unto you. Think on it, O bei vers, when yc are in the houie' of inourring, for the loss of your godly relations or friends, that ye forrow not, even as others, which hive no hope; for ye will meet again, « Theff. iv. 13, 14. They are buk lain down, to rest in their beds fur a little while, (IT. Ivii 2.) but in the inorning of the relurrection they will awake again, and come forth of their graves. The velfel of honour was but coarse, it had much alloy of bale metel in it; it was too weak, too din and inglorious, for ibe upper boule, whatever lustre it had in the low:r one. It was crackt, it was, polluted; and therefore it behoved to be meleed down that it may be refied and fabrioned more gloriously. Do but wait a while, and you Thall lee it come forth out of the furnace of earth, vying with the stars in brightness; ; nay, as the sun when he gocth forth in his might. Have you laid your infant children in the grave? You will see them again. Your God
calls himself the God of your feed; which, accordingio our Saviour's · exposition, fecures the glorious resurrection of the body. Where
fore let the covenant you embraced, for yourself, and your babes * now in the dust, comfort your hearts, in the joyful expectation, that, by virtue thereof, they thall be raised up in glory; and that, as being no more infants of days, but brought to a full and perfect fialure, as is generally supposed. Be not discouraged by reason of a weak and fickly budy; there is a day coming, when thotMalt be every whit whole. Ac the relirrection, Timothy shall be no more liable to his often infirmities; his body, that was weak and fickly, even in youth, shall be raised in power : Lazarus shall be beal and sound, his body being raised incorruptible. Andalinongh, perhaps, thy weakness will not allow thee, now, to go one furlong to meet the Lord in publick ordinances; yet the day comcth, when ihy body Mall be no more a clog to thee, but thou shalı meet the Lord in the air, « Thesi. iv. 17. It will be with the saints coming up from the grave, as with the Israelites, when they came out of Egypt, Plal.cv.37 There was not one fecble perfon among their tribes. ottant thou an uncomely, or deformed, body? There is a glory wilhin, which will then fit all right without; according to all the desire of thive heart It shall rise a glorious, beautiful, hanofume, and well proporsioned body. Its unicornelineis, or deformities inay go with it to the grave, but they hall not come back with it. O, that hele, who are now so desirous.co be beautiful and handsome, would not