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the freiher and more recent, but yet it is our menstrous Cloaths of Sin behind us, above both Deare and Fruition, thou canst and then shall-the weak Eyes of Flesh be not see my Face, C. All our Know- made like Eagles Eyes, to behold the Sun ;
ledge of God, all our Attainments of Ex and then shall the Soul be cloathed with --perience of Him, do reach but to some Holiness, as with a Garment, which God
dark and confused Apprehension of what Mall delight to look upon, because he fees he is; the clearest and neareft Sight of his own image in that Glass. God in this World, is, as if a Man were We come to the Lord's satisfying of not known but by his Back, which is a Mes's Desire, and proclaiming his Name great Point of Estrangement: 'Tis faid, in before him ; 'it is himself only can tell you Heaven we shall lee Him Face to Face, what He is; it is not Ministers Preaching, and fully as he is, because then the Soul or other Discourse, can proclaim that is made capable of it.
Name to you ; we may, indeed, speak oTwo Things in us here puts us in an ver those words unto you, but it is the Incapacity of Nearness with God, Infirmi- Lord that must write that Name upon ty, and Iniquity : Infirmity in us cannot be your Heart. Heonly can discover his Glory hold his Glory,'tis of fo weak Eyes, that the to your Spirit: There is a Spirit of Life Brightness of the Sun would strike is blind; which cannot be enclosed in Letters and and Iniquity in us, he cannot behold it, be Syllables, or transmitted through your cause he is of pure Eyes, that can look on no Ears into your Hearts, but He himself unclean Thing ; 'tis the only Thing in muft create it inwardly, and stir up the the Creation that God's Holiness shath inward Sense and Feeling of that Name, Antipathy at, and therefore he is still a- of those Attributes : Faith, indeed, comes bout the destroying of the Body of Sin in us, by Hearing, and our knowledge in this about the purging from all Filthiness of Life is through a Glass, darkly, through Flesh and Spirit ; and till the Soul be thus Ordinances, and Senses ; but there must be purged of all Sin, by the Operation of the an inward teaching and 1peaking to your Holy Ghoft, it cannot be a Temple for Souls to make that effectual, tbe anointing an immediate Vition of Him, and an im-teacbeth you all Things, 1 Joh. ii. 27. mediace Exhibition of God to us: Sin is Alas! 'tis the Separation of that from the Wall of Partition, and the thick Cloud the Word that makes it so unprofitable; that eclipses his Glory from us; it is the if the Spirit of God were inwardly writopposite Hemisphere of Darkness, contra ing what the Word is teaching, then should sy w Light, according to the Access or Re- your Souls be living Epiftles, that ye cess of God's Presence it is more or less might read. God's Name on them: 0, be dark; the more Sin reigns in thee, the much in imploring of, and depending on less of God is in thee, and the more Sin him that teacheth to profit, who only can be fubdued, the readier and nearer is God's declare unto your Souls what He is. Presence : Buttet us comfort ourselves, These Names express His Ellence or chat one Day we fhall put off both Infir- Being, and His Properties, what He is mity and Iniquity, Mortality shall put on in Himself
, and what He is to us; in Immortality, and Corruption be clothed Himfelf, He is Febovab, or a Self-being, with Incorruption ; we shall leave the dut al, as we heard in iii. Gbap. I am Rags of mortal Weakness in sbe Grave, and that I am, and El, a frong God, or
left them in WinInfirmity and Iniquity incapacitate us, &c. 61 Almighty God; which ewo hold out unto all, your Souls would choose Him certainus the absolute incomprehensible Perfecti- ly, your Souls would trust in Him; ye on of God, eminently and infinitely en would say, Albur sball not save us, we closing within Himself all the Perfections will not ride on Horses: Creatures thall of the Creatures; the unchangeable and not satisfie us, we will seek our Happiness murable Being of God, who was, and is, in Thee and 110 where else ; since we have and is to come, without Succession, with. tafted this new Wine, away wit, the old, out Variation, or Shadow of turning ; and the new is better.
I beseech you, make then the Almighty Power of God, by God your Friend, for He is a great One ; which, without Difficulty, by the Inclina- whether He be a Friend or an Enemy, tion and Beck of His Will And Pleasure, He hath two Properties that make Him He can make, or unmake all, create, or eithermost comfortable, or moft terrible, annihilate, to whom nothing is impossible; according as He is at Peace or War with which three, if they were pondered by us, Souls, Eternity, and Omnipotency. You till our Souls received the Stamp of them, were all once Enemies to Him. O conthey would certainly be powerful to ab- sider what a Party you have, an Almighty ftract, and draw our Hearts from the vain, Party, and an unchangeable Party; and if changeable, and empty Shadow of the Crea- you will make Peace with Him, and that in ture, and gather our scattered Affections Christ, then know, He is the best Friend in that are parted among them, because of the World', hecause He is Unchangeable, and their Insufficiency, that all might unite in Almighty; if He be thy Friend, He will do one, and joyn with this Self-sufficient and all for thee He can do, and thou hast need eternal God; I say, if a Soul did indeed of: But many Friends willing to do, yer believe and consider, how All-sufficient have not Ability, but he hath Power to He is, how insufficient all Things elfe are, do what he will, and pleases; many Friends would it not cleave to Him, and draw near. are changeable, their Affections dry up, of to Him, Pfal.lxxiii. ult. It is the very Tor themselves die ; and therefore even Princes ment and Vexation of the Soul to be thus Friendship is but a vain Confidence, for sacked, distracted, and divided about many they mall die, and then their Thoughts of Things ; and therefore many, because | Favour perish with them, but He abides there is none of them can supply all our the same for all Generations, there is no Wants ; our Wants are infinite, our De End of his Duration, and no End of his Gires insaciable, and the Good that is in any Affection; He can still say, I am that I Thing is limited and bounded, it can serve am; what I was, I am, and I will be what one but for one Use, and another for ano- I am; Men cannot say so, they are like ther Use, and when all are together, they the Brooks that the Companies of Teman can but fupply fome Wants, but they leave looked after; and thought to have found
, outward things .cross one another, and ter ; but behold they were dried up, and cannot consist together ; and hence ariseth | the Companies ashamed. God cannot much Strife and Debate in à Soul, his make thee ashamed of thy Hope, because * need requireth both, and both will not a- He is faithful and able. Ability and Figree: Bu o that you could see this one delity is a sure Anchor to hold by in all Universal Good, One for all, and above Storms and Tempefts..
Such is God in Himself; now, there | His Tribunal of Justice in the World tor are two Manner of Ways He vents Him this End, that all Flesh might once be conself towards the Creatures, in a comfor-victed before him, and therefore He cites, table Way, or in a terrible Way. This as it were, and summons all Men to lift glorious Perfection, and Almighty Power, themselves and compear before His Tribubath an Issue upon Sinners, and it runs in nal, to be judged; He lays out an Aca twofold Channel, of Mercy, or Justice : cufation in the Word against them ; He Of Mercy towards miserable Sinners that takes their Consciences Witness of the find themselves lost, and Alee unto Him Truth of all that is charged on them, and and take hold of His Strength; and Justice then pronounces that Sentence in their towards all those that Aatter themselves in Conscience, Cursed is be that abides not their own Eyes, and continue in their Sins, in all Things, which the Conscience suband put the evil Day far off: There is no fumes, and concludes itself accursed, and Mercy for such as fear not Justice, and subscribes to the Equity of the Sentence : there is no Justice for such as fee from it And thus the Man is guilty before God, and unto Mercy. The Lord exhibits Himself his Mouth stopped; he hath no Excuses, in a twofold Appearance, according to the no Pretences, he can see no Way to e Condition of Sinners; He sits on a Throne scape from Justice, and God is justified, and Tribunal of Grace and Mercy, to by this Meáns, in his speaking and judg. make Access to the vileit Sinner, who is ing, Psal. li. 4. The Soul ratifies and * afraid of his Wrath, and would fain be ar confirms the Truth and Justice of all his
Peace with him; and he sits on a Throne | Threatnings, and Judgments, Rom. iii. of Justice and Wrath, to feclude and debar 4. Now, for such Souls as joyn with presumptuous : Sinners from Holiness. God in judging and condemning them. There were two Mountains under the Telves, the Lord liath erected a Throne of Law, one of Curfings, and another of Blef Grace, and Tribunal of Mercy in the fings; these are the Mountains God sets His Word,whereupon he hath set His Son Jesus Throne upon, and from these He speaks, Chrift, Pfal. ii. 6. and lxxxlix. 14. and and sentences Mankind : From the Moun- xlv. 6. Heb. i. 8. And O, this Throne tain of Cursings, He hath pronounced a) is a confortable Throne, Mercy and Curse, and condemnatory Sentence upon Truth goes before the face of the King all 'Flesh, for all have finned, there to welcome and entertain miserable Sinfore, he concludes all under Sin, that all ners, and to make Access to them. And Flesh mighe stop their Mouth, and the from this Throne Jesus Chrift holds out whole world become guilty before God. the Sceptie of the Gospel, to invite Sin Now, the Lord having thus condemięd ners, self-condemned Sinners, to come to all Mankind because of Disobedience : He Him alone, who hath gotten all final fits again upon the Mountain of Blessings, Judgment committed to Him,that He may and pronounces a Sentence of Absolution, give eternal Life to whom be will, Joh. of as many as have taken with the Sentence, v. 21, 22. O, that is a sweer and amof Condemnation, and appealed to His pie Commission given to our Friend and Grace and Mercy, and those which do not Brother Jefus Christ, Power to repeal To, the Sentence of Condemnation stands Sentences past against us, Power to loose above their Heads unrepealed ; He erects them whom Justice hath bound, Power
and Authority to absolve them whom Jul- | World, and plead the Cause of the poor rice hath condemned, and to bless them Sheep, I will appeal to Him, refer the whom the Law hash cursed, and to open Cause to HisDecision, I will make my Supplitheir Mouth to Praise whole Mouth Sin cation to Him, and certainly He will hear, and Guiltiness bach stopped: Power to and interpose Himself between Wrath and giye the Anfwer of a good Conscience to me, "He will rescind this Sentence of Conthy eril self-tormenting Conscience; in a demnation, since he Himself was condemWord, He hath Power to give Life, to ned for us, and is justified, It is Cbrift that make alive, and heal those who are killed dyed, nay rather is risen again, whasball or wounded by the Commandment. Now, condemn me? He is near that justifies I fay, seeing God hath of Purpose eftablime, Rom. viii. 33, 34. Now if thou Thed this Throne of Mercy in the Word, do indeed flee into Him for Refuge, that thou mayeft well, after receiving and ac- City is open for chee, and nothing to pre. knowledging of the Justice of the Curse of judge thy Entry : But no Curse, no Coathe Law, appeal to Divine Mercy and demnation can enter in it, Rom. viii. i. Grace, Gtting on another Throne of the He will justifie and absolve thee from all Gospel; thou may, if thy Conscience urge Things whereof the Law could not justifie thee to despair, and to conclude there is no thee, but condemn thee, There is forgiveHope, thou may, I say, appeal from thy nefs with Him, that He may be feared. Conscience, from Satan, from Justice, un- David may teach thee this Manner of Apto Jesus Christ, who is holding out the plication, Pfal. cxxx. and cxlii. 2. of Scepter to chee; the Minister calls thee, appealing from the deserved Curse, to free Rise and come, ftand no longer before undeserved Blessing and Mercy in Chrift. that Bar, for it is a fubordinate Judicatory, Let us consider this Name of the Lord, there is a way to redress thee by a high- and it shall answer all our Suspicions of er Court of Grace : Thou may say to Juf Him ; all our Obje&ions against coming to tice, to Satan, to thy own Conscience, It is Him and believing in Him, it is certain, true, I confess, that I deserve that Sen- Ignorance is the Mother of Unbelief, totence; I am guilty, and can say nothing gether with the natural Perverseness of our againftit, while I ftand alone, but though Hearts, if we knew His Name we would I cannot satisfie, and have not; yet there trust in Him, if His Names were ponder. is one Jesus Chrift, who gave his Life a ed and considered, we would believe in Ransom for many, and whom God hath Him, Satan knows this, and therefore given as a Propitiation for Sins; He hath his great flight and cunning is, to hold fatisfied and paid the Debt in my Name; our Minds fixed on the Confideration of go and apprehend the Cautioner, fince He our Misery, and desperate Eftate, he keeps hath undertaken ir, nay, He hath done it, the awakened Conscience ftill upon that and is absolved. Thou had Him in thy
comfortless Sight, and he labours to repreHands, O Justice ! thou had Him Prisoner fent God by halves, and that is a false Reunder the Power of Death ; since you presentation of God, he represents Him have let Him go, then He is acquitted as cloathed with Justice and Vengeance, as from all the Charge of my Sins; and a confuming Fire, in which Light à Soul therefore, since I know that He is now a can see nothing but Desperation written; King, and hash a Throne to judge the land he labours to hold out the Thoughts of
His Mercy and Grace, or diverts a Soul | Pardon, Forgiveness, &c. to it, which re. from the Consideration of his Promises, vives the Soul of the humble, and interwhence it comes, that they are not efta- mingles some rejoycing with former tremblished, that though Salvation be near, yet bling; Majesty and Greatness goes before it is far from them in their Sense and Ap. to abase and bumble the Soul in its own prehension, therefore I say, you should la- Eyes, and Mercy and Goodness seconds bour to get an intire Sight of God, and you them, to lift up those who are Low, and Thall see him beft in His Word, there exalt the Humble, and in the Description He reveals Himself, and there you find, of this, the Lord spends more Words, acif ye consider, that which may make you cording to the Necessity of a Soul, to fig. fear Him indeed, but never Aee from nifie to us how great and strong ConfoHim, that which mayabase you, but lation may be grounded on His Name, withall embolden you to come to Him how acceslible He is, though He dwell in though trembling: what ever Thought por inaccessible Light, how lovely he is though sess thee of thine own Misery, of thy own he be the high and the lotiy One, how Guiltinefs, labour to counterpoise that with good He is, though He be great, how à Thought of His Mercy and free Pro- Merciful He is, though He be majestick; mises : What ever be suggefted of His in a Word, that those that fee to Him Holiness and Justice, hear Himself speak may have all Invitation, all Encourage. out His own Name, and thou shalt hear as ment to come, and nothing to discourage, much of Mercy and Grace, as may make to prejudge their Welcome, that who ever these not terrible unto thee, though High will, may come, and nothing may hinder and Honourable. The Lord hath so on His Part. And then after all this, He framed the Expression and Proclamation subjoyns a Word of His Justice, in avenge of His Name in this place, that first aing Sin, to shew us that He leaves that as Word of Majesty and Power is premised, the last, that He essays all gaining ways (Tbe Lord, i be Lord God) that it of Mercy with us, that He is not very may compose our Hearts in Fear and Re- much delighted with the Death of Sinners, verence of such a glorious One, and make that so whosoever perishes may blame a preparatory Impression of the Majesty themselves, for hating their own Salvation, of our God, which indeed is the founda- and forsaking their own Mercy. tion of all true Faith. It begins to adore
Now whoever thou art that apprehends and admire a Deity, a Majesty hid from a dreadful and terrible God, and thy self a the World, the Thoughts of His Power miserab'e and wretched Sinner, thou canst and Glory poffeffes the Soul first and makes find no Comfort in God's Highness and
begin to tremble to think that it hath Power, but it looks terrible upon thee, beSuch a High and holy One to deal with. cause chou doubts of His Good-will to save
But in the next Place, you have the and pardon thee: Thou sayest with the most sweet, alluring, comforting Soiles blind Man, if thou wilt chou can do it; that can be imagined, to meet with the thou art a strong God, but what Comfort trembling and languishing Condition of a can I have in thy Strength, since I know Soul that would be ready to faint before not thy Good-will? I say, the Lord ansuch a Majesty ; here Mercy cakes it by swers thee in this Name, I am merciful, the Hand, and gives a Cordial of Grace, faith the Lord, if thou be miserable, I am