« הקודםהמשך »
not be available for the making him happy,
. Works of the Lord, fórafmuch as we
and to Virtue, Knowledge-; and to Know. 5, Coc. ledge, Temperance; and to Temperance, Patience; and to Patience, Godliness ; and to Godliness, Brotherly Kindnefs; and to Brotherly Kindness, Charity. By our good Works, making our Calling Verse so. and Élection Jure, (so some Copies have the loth verfe of 1 Pet. 1.) that doing these things we may never fall.; but an Entrance may
be miniftred to us abundantly into the everlasting Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Chrift.
On the 29th of September, 1680.
Pfalm cxij. 4.
To the. Upright there ariseth Light in 14... the Darknefs: ---
Odliness, saith St. Pauli hath the Pros
Of this Propolis
For in this Pfalm Two things are designed, a Description of the Pious Man and a Defcription of his BkJędness in this Life: Each of which is done in five Instances or Particulars.
The Terms wherein the Pious Man is here describ’d, are these following.
First, He is one that feareth God, and greatly,
Secondly, He is one that is Righteous and
Thirdly,. He is one that is prudent and difereet in the managing of his Affairs, ver. 5. He guideth his Affairs with Discretion.
Fourthly, He is one whose Heart is fixed, trufling in the Lord, ver. 7.
Lastly, He is one that is extreamly Charitable. He is gracious and
full of Compassion, ver. 4: He leweth Favour and lendeth, ver. 5. He hath dispersed, he hath given to the Poor, ver. 9.
Now the Blessedness of such a Man as this, as to this Life, is describ'd in the five Instances following
The first of which is, A great and happy Pofterity; thus, ver. 2. His Seed shall be mighty upon Earth; the Generation of the Upright shall be bksed.
The second is, A Plentiful and an Amplé Fortune ; thus in the third verse, Riches and Plenteousness shall be in his House.
The third is, A lasting Fame -and Reputation ; thus again in the third verse, His Righteousness remaineth for ever; and likewise in the fixth verse, He Jhall be had in everlasting Remembrance.
The fourth is, Honour, and Power, and Dig, nity, even such as shall excité the Envy of the Wicked; thus in the ninth verse, His Horn shall be exalted with Honour, the Wicked shall see it, and shall be grieved, &c.
The fifth is, Great Safety and Peace in the Midst of Dangerous and Troublesome Times : Thus in the Text, To the Upright there ariseth Light in the Darkness, i. e. Light in the greateft Straights and Difficulties, for that is the
Meaning of Darkness in this place. Times of Darkness, in the Scripture-language, are Evil, and Difficult, and Dangerous Times. Now upon account of this Ligbt that ariseth to the Upright Man in Evil-times, it comes to pass as it followeth, ver. 6, 7, 8. that such a one sball not be moved for ever, neither shall be be afraid of evil-tiding, for his Heart is established, and he shall not forink until he fee his Desire upon his Enemies. Or, as the Chaldee perhaps better renders it, until he fee Redemption in Distress.
This is the juft Analysis of the whole Pfalm. Now of these several Characters whereby the 'Pious Man is describ'd, I have pitch'd upon that of his Uprightness to give an Account of, and to recommend to you at this time. And of the several Instances of the Blessedness of such a Man, I have pitch'd upon that of Safety and Peace in the midst of Perilous and Troublesome Times. These two Points I have chosen to entertain you upon, as judging them most suitable to the present Occasion, and to our present Circumstances. And we find them both join'd together in the Words of the Text, To the Upright there ariseth Light in the Darkness.
Here then we have two Things to consider; First, The Person to whom the Promise here made, or the Blessedness here mentioned doth belong; It is the Upright Man. Secondly, The Promise, or the Blésedness it self; It is light in Times of Darknefs.
I begin with the Character of the Person to whom this Promise is made, He is the Upright Man, or, as in our more common Language we express him, the Honeft Man, the Man of Integrity. We all know so well what is meant by these Words, that it would render the thing more difficult to offer Critically to give Light to them. As all those General Terms, whereby a Man's whole Duty is expreft in Scripture, have their several Respects and Considerations which difference them one from the other, though they be all equally comprehensive; fo hath this Term of Uprightness. That which it immediately and particularly respects is the Goodness of a Man's Principles, and the Suitableness of his Actions to them. Or thus, The Conformity of a Man's Mind to the Eternal Rules of Righteousness, and the Conformity of his Actions to the Principles of his Mind. This is that upon account of which
Person is denominated Upright, and contrary to this is all Hypocritical and Partial Dealings in Macters of our Duty. So that if we would give the Definition of an Upright Man, it should be in such Terms as these: He is a Man that in all things follows the Dictates of his Conscience. Or, he is of his Actions. Or, he is one, that always proposeth to himself Righteous Ends, and pursues those Ends in Righteous Ways.
This is the general Description of the Upright Man: But for the more lively Display of him, and the rendring him, as more Amiable fo more Imitable, it will be fit that we represent