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knit Hearts together. Auguftus, when undaunted Natures may be tamed, and he was acquainted with the Conspiracy of may bow and submit willingly to the one of his chief Minions, Cinna, whom Yoke of his Obedience, and may hencehe had made a Friend of an Enemy, by forth knit such a sacred Bond of Friend
Kindness and Courtesy, takes the same thip and Fellowship with God, as may Way to make of a Traitor a constant never be broken.' Friend; he doth nut punith him, as he But, say ye, who is he that fins not? had done others, but calls for him, and Who can say, my Heart is pure, and declares unto him his vile Ingratitude, my Way is clean Who can fay, I that when he had given him Life and bave no Sin? And therefore that can. Liberty, he should conspire to take away not be expected which you crave. Nay, bis Prince's Life ; well, when he is con but saith the Apofle, Tbese Things I founded and astonished, and cannot open write unto you, tbat ye fin not. Because bis Mouth, faith, Agustus, I give thee Sin is in all, therefore you excuse your thy Life again, first an open Enemy, and self in your Sins, and take Liberty to fin; now a Traitor ; yet from this Day, let but the very contrary, is the latent of an inviolable Friendship be bound up be. the declaring unto us that we have sin ; iween us, and so it proved ; for this he thews that none want it, not that ye Way of dealing did corally overcome his may be the more indulgent towards it, Heart, and blot out all seditious Thoughts. but the more watchful against it. It is But 0, how incomparably greater is his not to make you secure, but rather jo Condescendency and Clemency, whose give you Alarm; even the best and ho Person is so high and sacred, whose Laws | lieft, it is an Alarm to them, to tell are so just and holy, and we lo base and them that Sin is in confimis, in their very wretched, to pardon such infinite Guilt, Borders, that she Enemy is even in their Rebellion and Treachery, againft such Quarters, yea, in their Bosom ; certains an infinite Majefty; and that, when a Soully, this should so much the more excite us: doch but begin to blush, and be ashamed againt it, and arm us for it every Mowith itself, and cannot open its Mouch; ment, left either by Fraud, or Force, by I say, this rare and unparalleld Good- fecret Undermining, or opca Violence, ness and Mercy being considered, cannot is draw us away from God. This but tame and daunt the wildest and most Word, If we say we bave no Sin, we savage Nature ; wild Beasts are not lie, it is a Watch-word given to Men, brought in Subjection and tamed, but by a Warning to enter in Confideration of gentle Usage ; it is not Fierceness and themselves, for the Enemy being within. Violence can cure their Fierceness, but there is no flying from him, we carry Meeknels and Condescendency, to follow him about with us, and being within, he their Humours, and soft Dealing with is less discerned ; and therefore we ought abem ; as a Rod is not bowed by great 10 awake, and so walk circumspectly, Strength, but broken, even so, these with Eyes in our Head, left we be sure Things, of the Promise of Pardon for prized at Unawares, either in that Time Sin, of the Grace and Readiness of God we know not of, or at that place we to pardon upon the easiest Terms, are leaft fuspect. And to others of you, written for this End, that our wild and who have never attained any Victory
over your Sins, and scarce have a dif | ing against this Bosom-enemy, that ye cerning of them; I would only fay this, who have both little Knowledge and that the Univerfality of Sia's Inhabitation, Strength, should think ye may live reor Being in all Men, eren the godly, curely, and not trouble yourselves. If
will not excuse Sin's Domination and they have need to take heed, how much · Reign in you. ki is strange, that since more have ye, since it is but in them,
the Holieft have need of continual watch. I but it reigns in you ?.
1 Joh. ii. 1. - And if any Man fin, we have an Ad
vocate with the Father, &c.
but too certain, that any Man may is usual for Sins after Mercy, Convictisin, yea, that all Men will sin, even on, and Resolution to appear so hainous, those who have most Communion with that they may seem to over-top the Mer. God, and Interest in the Blood of Chrift; cy of God, and the Merits of Chrift; a. yet they are not altogether exempted Soul is moft apt to be troubled with from this fatal Lot of Mankind, it is Guilt contracted after Pardon, and a Deincident even to them to fin, and too fire of Purity. But withal, I would in frequently incident; but yet we have a the last Place represent to you, that there happy and sweet Provision, for Indem is no Ground of Despair, or Discouragenity from the Hazard of Sin: We bavement for such an one, tho' there be an Advocate with ibe Farber. Grant Ground'of Humiliation and Mourning: the Probability, yea, the Neceffity and There is a Provision made in the Gospel Certainty of that Suppofal, If any Man against these continually incident Fears; do fin, yet there is as much Certainty there is a Security against the Hazard of of Indemnity from Sin, as of Necessity surprising Sins; and, that this Comfort of falling into Sin. It is not more fure, belongs only to fuch Souls, as unfeignedthat we shall carry about with us Marterly defire not to fin, and are in some of Sorrow and Mourning; but chat it is Measure perswaded by the Grace of God as fure, that we have always without us not to fin, not to them who willingly Matter of rejoicing.
give up themselves to their own Lusts. Let me then speak a Word to these It is a common Doctrine as any, that Particulars ; First, Thai Sin is incident Sin hath some Lodging in every Mans. 10 the best, even after all Perswalions, Heart and Flesa, and is not totally cast Convictions, Resolutions, Defires, and out, but only bound with Chains with,
in, that it do not exercise its old Do- and Self-love of his own Heart ; to take minion over à Believer : But I fear, off the deceiving Mask of Pretences and
Good, me ft fubftantial in themselves, yet are ably the true and real "Inclinations of the but circumftantial in our Apprehensions, Heart to Wickedness, to Passion, Pride, and very rarely and extroardinarily have Uncleanness, Malice, Envy, and all these Place in the deeper and more serious Affections of the Flesh: to find out Thoughts of our Hearts: They are com- the true beating of the Pulse of the Heart ; monly confefled, it is true, but as fel ) and indeed this just Discerning and Difdom considered, I am sure ; for who did covery of the Thief in the Soui, is a truly ponder the Inclinableness of our great Part of his Arraignment ; for if Nature to Sin, the strong propension of Sin ly under the View of an Eye that the Heart to Evil, the Deceitfulness of hates it, and loves God, much of its Sin itself, and the many circumstantial Power and Virtue, which ly in DarkHelps, and Additions it gets to its ness, is taken away. I press this the Strength, but he would stand in Awe, and more, because I verily apprehend it to be watch seriously over himself. I dare the Plague of many Chriftians, who have fay, many fin, rather because of a mir-lome general Insight into the Matter of apprehended Immunity from it, and a Good and Evil, and elpy fome more mif-reckoning of their own Measure and gross Corruption in themselves, and have Srength, than because of the Strength of fome Affection to Good; yet this e Sin itself. I know no one Thing makes Arangedness to our own Hearts, and the Sin so strong as this, that we do not ap-Vein or Strain of them, the not unprehend our own Weakness, and so give bowelling of our hidden Affections, and over Watchfulness, which is the greatest not discerning of the Poison of Pride, and best part of our Armour of Defence, Self-love, Love of the World, and luch when it is done in Faith, and this Watch, like Lufts, which are intermingled in all kept on the Tower of the Lord's Pro that we do, and spread, as it were, unimiles; the Apprehenfion of our escaping versally through the whole Man; this, I the Pollutions of the World, and of fay, makes most of us be subject to fo fome Strength to relift them ; this adds many Surprisals by Sin, we are often no more. Strenght to us, but diminisheth rooted before we draw up, and often and taketh from our Vigilancy, and so conquered ere we conlider : This makes exposeth us, as it were, naked and secure, us such Unproficients in Mortification, to the Cruelty of our Adversary. i ro that scarce any Sin is killed, while would with every Christian to be through the Roots of all Sin lies hid under the ly acquainted, and often conversant in Ground from us. Then withal, I deiwo Books of Sophistry, I may fo term fire you to study how deceivable a them, Tbe Deceitfulness of bis own Thing Sin is, how many deceitful fair Heari, and the Deceivableness of Pretences it is covered with, It bath tbe Sin, Jer. xv. and Heb. iii
. 13. These Voice of Jacob, but ibe Hands of are the Volumes he would daily turn o. Esau ; look what it is that is pleasant or ver, to learn to discern the Sophistica. suitable to our natural Spirits, it inGnuates Lions, Self-flatteries, Blindness, Darkness, itself always under the Shadow of that ;
and, if there be not much Heedfulness the Proposal of free Grace, to presume and Attention, and much Experience of to take Liberty to the Flesh ; fo, that the Wiles of that fubtile One ; it is a fame Corruption upon another Occasion great Hazard to be catched with it un. works another Way, upon the Supporal advisedly, while we clasp about another of new Sins, aggravated with preceeding Thing, which is presented as a Bait and Mercy and Grace in God, and Convicti. Allurement. Now, is it any Wonder ons and Resolutions in him, 10 drive that a poor Soul be drawn to fin often, him into Despondency and Dejećtion of when our Enemy doth not for the most Spirit, as if there were no Pardon for Part profess Hoftilicy, but Friendihip, and fuch Sins. And indeed, it is no Won- under that Colour pleads Admission with der if the Soul be thus set upon, if we in our Poris; and besides, we have a set aside the Consideration of the infinite treacherous Friend in our Bofom, that Grace of God, that far surpasseth the ill · betrays us into his Hands, that is our Deseris of Men. To speak of the very own deceitful Hearts : These Things I Nature of the Thing itself, there is no mention, to put you in Remembrance of Sin in its own Nature more unpardonwhat Condition you are in, in this world, able, than Sin' after Pardon; nothing so and what Posture you mould be into; hainous, aggravated with fo many high Watcb, (I say) and wben ye bave done Circumstances, wbich mingleth it with all, jiand with your Loins giri ; and the worst Ingredients, as this Sin, after tho you cannot possibly escape all Sin, lo much Grace revealed in the Gospel, yet certainly it is not in vain thus to to the End that we may not fin. Sins fet against it, and keep a Watch over it, washed so freely, in so precious a Founfor by this Means you shall escape more tain, and yet to defile again ; Sins forSin, and lin less; as he that aims at the given so readily and easily, the Debt Mark, tho he do not hit it, yet he shall whereof, in Justice the whole Creation ordinarily come nearer it, than he that was not able to pay, and yet to offend thoois only at Random; and as the fo gracious a. Fatber ; a Soul being Army that is moft vigilant and watchful, throughly convinced of the Vanity, Folly, tho they cannot prevent all Losses and and Madness of Sin, of the Deceitfulness Hazards, yet commonly they are not and Baseness of its Pleasures, and set in found at fuch a Loss, as those who are a Posture against it, as the most deadly proud, confident and secure.
Enemy; and yet after all this, to be foilNow, as it is supposed, that Sin is or led, deceived and insnared: Here, I say, dinarily incident to the Child of God, so are very piercing Confiderations, which it is especially to be caveated, that he cannot but set the Challenge very deep despair 'not in his Sins; for it is impor into the Heart of a Chriftian, and wound ted in this Provision, that the Believer is him fore ; how will he be filled with in great Hazard upon new Lapses into Shame and Confusion of Face, if he look Sin, either of daily Incursion, or of a upon God? Every Look or Beam of grosser Nature, to be difcouraged." As whose Countenance, represents unto the there is so much Corruption in any Mans Soul the vileft and most abominable Heart, as will turn the Grace of God Visage of Sin; or, if he look into him. into Wantonnefs, and incline him vpoal self, there is nothing but Telf.condemning
there, he finds his own Conscience sta could afford. Therefore I dare not say ring him as a Thousand Witnesses ; thus to you (as One too unadvisedly exprelthe Soul of a Believer being environed, : seth it) Fear not, ibo' you do fin, of any he is ready to apprehend, that tho' God Hurt that can come by tbefe Sins ; Thould have pardoned the Sins of his Ig- for if you fin, it sball do you no Hurt norance, yet that there is more Difficulty at all : I say, this were indeed but to in this, to pardon his Returnings to Folly, make you too bold with Sin. I had and therefore are some put to harder rather represent unto you, that tho'ye Exercise, and greater Terrors after Con be secured in your eternal Estate, and version, than in the Time of it. The there can come no Condemnation that Sins of Ignorance being, as it were, re Way, yet there is much Hurt comes by moved as a Cloud, and scored out in a Sin, even in this World ; and sure, I Heap; but the Sins of Knowledge after think it a very rational and Christian Mercy, lying more distinctly and clearly Inducement, to prevail with a Chriftian in the View of the Soul, it is more not to fin, to tell him that he thall make difficult to blot them out of the Con a foolish Bargain by it, for he shall loose science, and sprinkle the Heart from an much more than he can gain. Is there evil Conscience : These Things I speak no Hurt or Lofs incident to Men, bur to you for this Reason, that you may be eternal Perdition? Nay, my Beloved, afraid to lin.' I suppose that there is no there is a Loss Christians may sustain by Hazard of eternal Damnation by Sin, sinning treely, which all the combined grant that you know before-hand, that Advantages of Sin cannot compense ; is if you fin, there is yet Forgiveness with not one Hour's Communion with God, is him, and there is no Hazard of perishing not the Peace of your own Consciences, by it; yer, sure I am, it is the moš and the Joy of the Spirit, such inestimfoolish Adventure in the World, to take able Jewels, that it were more suitable Liberty on that Account; for cho' there for a Man to sell the World, and buy be Indemnity that Way, as to chy eternal them, than to sell them, and buy a poor Estate, yet I am perswaded, that there momentany trifling Contentment, which is more Damage another Way, in thy hath a Sting in the Tail of it, and leaves spiritual Estate in this world, than all nothing but Vexation after it? O these the Gains of Sin can countervail: There Bruijes in David's Bones, there is a necessary Loss of Peace, and Joy, and Breacbes in bis Spirit, that Loss of Communion of the Holy Gbost; it is the Joy of bis Salvation ! let there inevitable in the very ordinary and natu. teach you who are escaped the great Hurt ral Course and Connection of Things, of Sin, to fear, at leaft, to be hurt by ic but that Sin, that way indulged, will this way, more than ever you can expect ecclipfe thy Soul, and bring some Dark to be helped by it. ness of Sorrow and Horror over it ; to But then, I desire to add this in the fpeak after she Manner of Man, and in third Place, That there is Provision made the Way of Reason itself, the Entertain against the Discouragement of these Souls ment of that which God bates, will de- thar desire not to sin, and yet sin against prive thee of more folid Joy and Sweet- their Desire. If the Challenge I spoke ness in him, than all the pleasures of Sin of, be written in thy Conscience, as it