OF THE RICH MAN AND LAZARVS. Certaine Sermons, By ROBERT HORNE.

LVKE 12.21.

So is he that gathereth riches to himselfe, and is not rich in God.

GALAT. 6.10.

While we haue (therefore) time, let vs doe good vnto all men, but specially to them which are of the houshold of faith,

LONDON, Printed by Ber: Alsop for IOHN HODGETS. 1619.

TO THE VVOR­THY IVSTICE OF CHESTER Sir Thomas Chamberlaine, Chiefe Iustice of his Maiesties Councell in the Marches of WALES.

Right Worshipfull,

I Haue presumed vnder your worthy Name, to send forth a few Obseruations (such as they are) on the Parable of the Rich man and Lazarus: A Scripture that may well beset by the Preacher to an age of such ful­nesse of sinne as ours is: An age and time, wherein vngodlinesse, Preface to the trunesse of Religion. which (as the (a) L. of Plessis once sayde) was wont but to whisper men in the eare, and lispingly to speake between the teeth, doth now most boldly, and without all blush of shame, with open mouth, call vpon both Bench and Pulpit for protection. Diues hath many sonnes at this day, sprung from his loines of cruelty, and the contempt of the poore: and for his brethren among vs, they be notLuc. 16 28. fiue onely▪ but more then fiue hundred; all which, liuing in no feare of God or death, and impudently in all the deedes of sinne, require the sharpest edge of Discipline, Gods and mans. Therefore and toward the reformation of so many as God shall incline to reade with some conscience the ensuing Dis­course, I haue (to my poore skill) done somewhat in this fearefull Parable of Diues. That little which is done, is according to the Scriptures, and humbly commended to your Worship by One that doth loue and reuerence You for the good parts of Iustice and Piety, which are noted to be in you by those that know you; and appeareth by this, that you spare no trauell, and accept no faces of men, or letters in matters of publike hearing, whether in Terme or out.

And who can but commend this mind of yours in so scarce a world of iust and painefull Magistrates? Your piety in Gods matters is testified sufficiently and plainely by your exemplary obedience to Gods Sabbothes: where your good affection to the Word, in a louing affabilitie to the Preachers thereof, is obserued and reuerenced by as many as truly know you. And for the in­tegrity of your mind in Court causes, you haue as many wit­nesses as the Court hath eares. And indeed how can Iustice badly follow that hath so good fore-leaders? I write not this to giue titles: onely in your person (Sir) I desire to stirre vp others of like place to beare you company in so good a way of piety, in­tegritie, and in corrupt iustice, if they be behind. Also my desire is, by so true a relation of so many good offices and effects of your chiefe Stewardship in the Marches performed among vs by you (matters which haue a good report of al men, & of the truth it selfe) humbly to prouoke you to goe forward in this narrow path, wherein sofew now walke, of sincere and conscionable Magi­stracy. So shal you one day heare this comfortable saying: Mat. 25.21. (c) It is well done good seruant & faithfull. But I may not say much in the Preface, where so little is sayd in the Booke it selfe: and therefore to conclude, I say, good Sir, g [...]t ground of the common enemy dayly, as I trust you doe, and keepe what you get. Let no man, let nothing pull this hope from you, [...]nto which you are entred, till you haue finished the dayes of your faith here, and the Ancient of dayes take you to those dayes of endlesse life, which He hath prepared in His Kingdome of glory for all that loue and waite for his comming, as I doubt not you doe, and pray you may doe so still, and with increase, that is, more and more to the true good of your seuerall charges, and the sure good of your own soule; for which hee prayeth, and will pray: Who is

Your Worships humbly to be commmaunded, for his best in the Gospell, ROBERT HORNE.

OF THE RICH MAN AND LAZARVS.

Luc. 16.19.20. &c.

There was a certaine Rich man which was clothed in purple and fine linnen; and fared well and delicately, euery day, &c.

THis chapter is chiefely directed & writ­ten against Pharisaical couetousnes and delicacie; exhorting to liberalitie, and a care of the poore, and this vnder two parables; the first of the Steward, who did wisely, though not iustly: Luc. 16.1.2 &c. the other of the rich man and Lazarus, v. 19.20. &c. The parable of the vniust Steward doth not warrant any pickery or vnfaithfulnes in ste­wards; but only doth implie, that as hee made him friends vniustly; so wee should both iustly and wisely make vs friends of this Mammon of wealth, v. 9. by dispersing a­broad;Ver. 9. that the fountaines of our liberalitie may runne o­uer to all that neede, Prou. 5.16:

The Pharises, that were couetous, hearing this, Ver. 14. v. 14. thought that Christ spake foolishly, and dangerously in so saying, they could not endure that their sore of couetousnes should be touched; and, when his hand came neere it, they put it from them with a scoffe, and mocked him: they would neuer beleeue but any man might serue God, and gather riches; or how should the Common-wealth stand? and how should one man bee aboue another? or, [Page 2]would hee haue all men alike? as if they had thus reasoned against him, as against one that spake both absurdly and impiously.Ver. 15. But vers. 15. hee tels them, that desire of riches and loue of themselues, had so blinded them, that they sawe not where they were, nor in what dangerous wayes: and that because they held themselues wise, therefore they iudged him foolish, and his doctrine (that was wise) ridicu­lous: but that that pleased them, God abhorred: and so he commeth to the Scripture, now read, v. 19. which I take to be, not any story or thing done, but as was said, a parable where his chiefe purpose is to disswade these Pharises from cruell hardnes and a carnall life by the example of this rich man, hung vp (as it were) in chaines in hell for a terrour to others, because he fed himselfe curiously, and fed not poore Lazarus.

And heere vnder the persons of the rich man and Laza­rus, we haue two sorts or states of men; such as were then in the world, are now, and shall be to the end of time. In both which, we may note their different states, and that which is common to them: their different states are heere on the earth, or after they left. It in their liues they differed very much, and after their deaths, much more: for, the rich man was finely clothed, or clothed with soft and gorgeous rayment: and for his fare, it was delicate and of the best eue­ry day. v. 19. the beggar and Lazarus was vexed with sores and hunger, desiring the coursest bread, or crummes of bread that fel from the richmans table. v. 20.21. After death, the beggars soule was glorified in the bosom of Abraham, being caried thither by the Angels: but of his buriall there is no mention. The richmans body was gloriously buried in the earth, and his soule pittifully buried in hel. v. 22.23. and this is common to both, that they both died. v. 22.

Thus standeth the scope and summe of these fiue first verses,Luc. 16.19 and the summe of all is to aduise men to spend their goods well, and not vpon their lusts: not to forget mercy, and to be liberall to Christs poore, that their fountaines, that is, their estate and possessions may be blessed vnto [Page 3]them Prou. 5.18. But, let vs returne to the rich man, and heare what is said of him.

There was a certaine Richman, &c.

The text speaketh of a certaine rich man, but without a­ny name; or of a rich man, not named: because (as one saith) God takes no care of the wicked, neither remembreth their names. Doctr. Where we learne that sinners are in no credit with God: the wicked, and him that loueth iniquitie, doth his soule abhorre, saith Dauid, Psal. 11.5. that is, such are so farre from hauing credit with him, that he hateth them; and not superficially, but from his very soule. Yea, they shall well know that hee hates them, by raining vpon them the raine of snares, of fire and brimstone, and stormie tempest▪ v. 6 he whose countenance beholdeth the iust, v. 7. will not suffer sinners to stand before him. Ps. 1.4.5. Iob saith, God will not take a wicked man by the hand. Iob 8.20. Iobs mea­ning may well be, that he will not giue him so much coun­tenance, as men giue to a man, when they giue him their hand? or he will not offer them his hand; and if they offer theirs, he will pull away his: sure it is, that as he will not cast away a perfit man, so he will not helpe the euill doer. Iob. ibid. He that made the remembrance of Iosiah as honie in all mouths, Syr. 49.1, put out the memoriall of Amalek; Exod. 17.14. and hee that said to Moses, I know thee by name, Exod. 33.12, saith to all wicked doers, I know you not. Matth. 7.22. & 25.12.

God hath threatned to dishonour them: 1. Samuel. 2.30. And Dauid, Gods king and folower,Reasons. will make no mention of them. Psal. 16.4. Secondly, they be the enemies that he will roote out, and who, except he meane to dissem­ble, (which vile affection is farre from God) will counte­nance those, whom he meanes to destroy? Thirdly, other-wayes God shall should doe as much for the children of wrath as hee doth for his deare children; and that which he hath forbidden as euill, to speake good of euill, Esa. 5.20. [Page 4]himselfe should offend in, which once to thinke, were blas­phemy. Fourthly, shame is an inseparable companion of sinne, as glory is of goodnes: which should not be so, if sinners should haue credit with God, who should receiue shame both from God and godly men.

Vses.Vse. 1 A terrour to wicked sinners, for though they care not for the fauor of God; yet, by loosing it, they shall loose that whic [...] [...]y more esteeme, the fauour of men. They thinke, b [...]e they set against God by fleshly cour­ses, they shall [...] [...]ast) be set by, by fleshly men: but they cannot be hi [...]g, 1. Tim. 5.25. and this hope will faile them, as it ha [...] [...]ne many, who for a while spread as the greene bay, Psa. 37.35. and after a little while, were cut downe as the greene grasse, Psal. 90.5, 6. Hest. 7.1.8.9. to day in great grace at Court, to morrow, or before night in great disgrace in prison. In the turne of the wheele, turned from honor to basenesse, and from open liking to open contempt.

A comfort to the righteous:Vse. 2 for, they haue Gods coun­tenance, though they cannot haue bad mens good willes: they are in with God, who can and will maintaine their true credits, whosoeuer speakes against them: and if God be with them, mens euill willes shall be reconciled, or doe them no harme. Nay, when the name of the wicked shall rotte, Prou. 10.7. that is, rotte aboue ground, as his carcasse doth vnder; the memoriall of the iust shall be blessed, and their gloryMat. 26 13. without end.

He that hath the keeping of their names, will preserue their good name as sure as he doth their saluation: there­fore is it written, that they shall be had in euerlasting re­membrance. Psal. 112.6. And is it not so? Is not Naboths name now in all mouthes better then either the cursed name of Ahab that was sold to sinne, or the carrion-name of Iezebel that was giuen to dogges? and who doth not now more honour Mardochas that was so poore and dis­pised, then hee doth insolent Haman, whose name so shone for a time, lightned with the glorious beames of his [Page 5]Princes countenance vpon him? And what comparison now betweene Peter, Paul, Iames, with other Apostles and Martyrs of Christ, and their persecutors; the one so sim­ple in the world, and the other so great?

Which was clothed in purple, &c.

But now againe to this rich man; who is described heers by his clothing, and by his fare: for his clothing, it was too curious, and with too much pride and affectation; else both colour and finenesse might haue bene tollerated in so rich a man: for it is not vnlawfull for great men to put on other, that is more costly, both apparell and colours, then poore men may. But this man put on pride with his appa­rell, and wore his garments as the effects of a lofty minde, with the contempt of the poore: or, he wore strange appa­rell, and such as stood altogether in the putting on: there­fore is his apparell censured, and he for wearing it.

Where learne, that all intemperance in apparell,Doctr. and a­buse of apparell, is vnlawfull to all: as when it is other then belongeth to the sexe, Deut. 22.5. which may cause, and be leader to some horrible sinne: when it is costly, that is, aboue our estate and meanes, with excesse, or with stret­ching of the cloth, 1. Tim. 2.9. when it is light for the fashion or colour; called, Prou. 7.10. whorish apparell, and Zephan [...] 1.8. strange raiment: when it is not made according to tem­perance and shamefastnes, which is the Apostles fashion, 1. Pet. 3.3. but according to euery new fashion that comes: when as heere it is put on and worne with the impeachment of hospitalitie, and other charitable deeds to the poore: for, so attiring our selues, we after a sort vnclothe them; and wearing our apparell with such contempt, weare out theirs. And lastly, when it is worne, as the ensigne of an arrogant and hautie minde: such was the flaring apparell of the daughters of Sion, so much and sharply censured by Esa. 3.16.17.18.19. &c. And God will cloth such, for their gar­ments of glory, which garments of shame. Reasons: they [Page 6]that weare such apparell, forget their Christian calling, which is, to walke soberly. Tit. 2.11. Secondly, such put their heauen in their apparell, and make it their happines, not to goe modestly in their clothes as Saints, but curiously and finely in them, as this rich man: thirdly, such make nets of their apparell to intrappe themselues and others in it: and not onely nets of wantonnesse, but sponges to drinke vp both their owne, and the poores prouision.

A reproofe to the maner of attiring vsed in our dayes,Vse. 1 and to the proud and chargeable apparell that is so com­mon now: for doe not meane persons now offend heere­in, as well, and ordinarily, as sinfull Diues? They that can­not spare a penny to a poore man, can find inough to spare for their great ruffes, and silke shooe-strings: euen seruing-men, and seruant maids, that receiue but smal wages, haue a common hand in this vanitie; and by their apparell it is hard to know, who is Diues, and who Lazarus. It is but a simple maide that weares not as fine linnen as her mistresse: and that man is as no body, and of no fashion, that is not as­soone in the fashion as his maister, or, (if he be sober in his clothes) before him: How neare doth this come to the cu­rious and vnmercifull apparell of this rich man? therfore it is not curiositie in Ministers to deale in these matters, but a necessarie and charitable labour in them to presse them to the full in their Sermons and exhortations: for, though fine garments be Gods gifts, and the riches of the earth, Gods goodnes, yet the abuse of these to all proud and vnsober couerings; is our shame. Our apparell was giuen vs to hide our nakednes; Gen. 3.21. which nakednes came from our fall and sinne: and shall we glory in that, which at first was, and to this day, is the couer of our shame? Is it seemely that a theefe, saued from the gallowes, should be proud of the halter that should haue hanged him? or if this be vnseeme­ly, as little and ill doth it become Christians to bee proud of that, that should as much humble them, as the halter the theefe? What difference then, I meane for any good or sound matter of reioycing, betweene thy proud clothes and [Page 7]his poore halter? Adam, in his innocencie, though naked, needed no couer; his nakednes being then so full of glori­ous brightnes, or as the Sunne in his strength: our apparell, the brauest we put on, would haue as much obscured it, as a darke cloud now doth the comfortable Sunne: but euer since sinne entred; all is contrarie: and what should haue beene our glory, is now become our shame. Therefore to make so much of our shame, and with so great neglect of better duties to our neighbour and the poore, so to trimme it, what is it but an intollerable and cruell vanitie? Againe, who would glory of the ragges that are wrapped about his wounds? Our attire, what doth it but hide, in our bodies, the wound of our f [...]ll? and what glorying then of our prou­dest couer, there being no better matter in it? The world, while it was yong, was simple and plaine, now in the do­tage of it, it is clothed with double, not garments only, but hearts, Prou. 31.21.

Our fathers kept sheepe, Gen. 43.2. we, their children, scorne to weare the w [...]oll: the garments that God made to Adam and to his wife, our first parents, were coates of skinnes. Gen. 3.21. Christs garment was plaine, and simple without seame. Ioh. 19 23. and many, whom the world was not wor­thy of, wandred about in sheepe-skinnes. Hebr. 11.37. that is, in leather coates, being destitute, afflicted, and tormented: which I speake not, to bind all, rich and poore, to one kind of apparell without difference; or as if I thought that rich men might not put on more rich attire then other men: but iustly to reproue by the word, and by such examples of holy men, all fond affectation and lightnes this way. Iacob knew his sonnes coate so soone as his other sonnes Iosephs brethren, brought it to him. Gen. 37.33. He knew that it was the same coate which he made to his sonne Ioseph. The coates of fantasticall men and women of the fashion, at this day, cannot be knowne to be coates of Gods making: for, bring them to God, and the Poppets in them; and will be s [...]y. These are my sonnes coates? or may not the diuell ra­ther say; These are my sonnes; for I made them these [Page 8]coates? But my speech of these vanities rather craueth a re­formation then any imbittering; and therefore praying all humorists in apparell to consider betimes, and before the decree which is gone forth, be sealed with some notable iudgement, what God by Zephans hath threatned against all that are clothed with strange, that is, monstrous garmets; which is that he will visit for them, by a cutting off of man and beast, Zeph. 1.8. I leaue, what might be further spoken, to considera­tion, and come to a second vse.Vse. 2 For, if intemperance in appa­rell be censured by the word; then it is not true that the Scripture medleth not with apparell, neither hath any mea­sure to make it by: for the holy Ghost (as hath beene shewed) doth in it, send vs a most fit measure for all the garments we put on. And where some, that say to their proud coates and vpstart fardingales, as Saul to Samuel, honour me before this people, 1. Sam. 15.30. are of opinion that the apparell is not to be regarded, but the heart; heere we see, that the apparell is the surest shewing signe and inscription of the foolish heart that weareth it. Indeede, the intemperance of all our strange apparell is from our heart; but when our heart hath once laid it vpon our backe, we may reade an intemperate heart there: and so long as the leafe is greene on the top of the tree, we know that all sappe is not gone downe to the roote. There­fore, when we see such streamers of pride in so many garish tires and attirings of men and women, and of women spe­cially; we may say there dwelles a proud heart, a vaine heart, a wanton heart, and a heart of no modestie or good stay. Such was the clothing of this rich man; which is ther­fore branded by the holy Ghost, vnder the names of purple and fine linnen, and vnder the daily and wanton vse of such pride swolne clothes. Heerein, there is no doubt, but hee offended greatly; but heerein expresly and principally, that in all this waste and glory of apparell, he was cruell to La­zarus: and in this, he hath but too many followers at this day, who carry all good housekeeping with them in their trunkes to London, or some other great Citie or Towne that they purpose to liue in, and not at the Ephrathah of their [Page 9]owne home, Ruth. 4.11. And heere it is true which is spo­ken by one; that there war neuer good house kept by Gentle­men, since the Tailor measured their land by the yard. So much for the Rich mans clothing, his sumptuous fare followeth.

And fared sumptuously, euery day.

What, euery day? and that sumptuously, or choisely euery day? this was a double sinne: one, that he was giuen so much to his bel [...]y; another, that he was giuen so conti­nually to it: one that he fed so curiously and daintily; an­other, that he fed so, not at certaine times, but daily: and by such filling of the belly with meates, and stuffing of the head with drinkes, made himselfe altogether vnfit for any good duti [...]s in his calling. I doe not say but the cup may sometimes ouerflow: and that a Christian may be more cheerefull, and feede more liberally at one time, then at another. For, euen Christ at a marriage in Cana, appro­ued a more liberall and full diet, then at another time hee would haue done, Ioh. 2.9. But how doth this iustifie that fulnes of bread which was Sodoms, and this rich mans sinne? Ezech. 16.49. Or, how doth it warrant at any time, any ea­ting out of Gods feare? and if no such eating at any time, how much lesse then any comonnes this way? Two things therefore are reproueable in this voluptuous rich man. The first, that he was so curious for his belly: the second, that he was euery day so, for which his soule is in hell.

Out of both which we learne,Doctr. 1. that all abuse of meates and drinkes to excesse, is a sinne to hell. In the 13. Chapter to the Romanes, the Apostle of the Gentiles, Saint Paul, hauing exhorted such beleeuers at Rome as had put on the armour of light, to keepe the path of life; saith, Not in gluttony and drunkennes: as if he had said, these are out of your way to saluation: walke therefore honestly, that is, in temperance, and not in these, if you meane to be saued, Rom. 3.13. From whence it must needes follow, that they offend to damnation, who drinke as much as a Horse, and not so so­berly as hee: and who make it their exercise to eate and [Page 10]drinke: eating as beasts, who eate all the day and part of the night. But the same Apostle speaketh plainely as much, Phil. 3.19. telling the Church to which he there wrot, that their end is damnation, whose belly is their God. For, these are the vncleane hogges that the Diuels of intemperance enter into, and carie with violence into the great deepe, Luc. 8.33. So Esau, louing his belly so much, and the blessing so little, is sir-named prophane, or one that could not be saued, Hebr. 12.16. And, what doth our Sauiour meane, Luc. 2 [...].34, so carefully to forewarne his disciples and follo­wers with a take heede, that your hearts be not ouercharged with surfetting and drunkennes; if he had not held these to be strong lets to saluation? They that are maried to these; say not as the other ghests did, who refused to come to the great supper of Christ; I pray thee haue vs excused; but with­out all blush of shame, we haue married wiues, and there­fore we cannot come: Luc. 14 20. That is, we will neither be good nor seeme good. And for this, some haue not vn­fitly compared our Tap houses and Tauernes (as men vse them now) to the lawe of the asse in Sampsons hand, which laid the Philistimes heapes vpon heapes, Iudg. 15.16. For the world hath slaine his thousands, but these haue slaine their ten thousands, 1. Sam. 18.7, and not with a mortall wound, but with an immortal to eternall death. But that all abuse of the creature to excesse is a sinne to hell, may further bee proued.

The reasons. For (first) it is a waste of the good crea­ture, abusing that to sinne which might haue comforted many, perhaps, haue saued the liues of some. And what are such but theeues to their brethren, Prou. 3.27, and murthe­rers of their brethren, and themselues? He that robbes a man of that which is his, is a theefe: And such theeues are they that eate the poore, that is, that which is theirs, at their tables of excesse. So hee that keepes away the oile from the lampe, puts it out as well as he that quencheth it with wa­ter: and such are they, who deuoure that bread which is the poore mans life: their hand is in his blood as well as [Page 11]theirs, who oppresse him to death by taking away his bread. Now, doe theeues and murtherers offend to damnation: and doe not voluptuous theeues, and murtherers offend so too? Secondly, such an abuse of the creature oppresseth the heart with surfetting and drunkennes: and how can the heart so oppressed, and person liuing in such a trade of exceeding, looke to be saued? Thirdly, it is flat idolatrie, making the belly a God. Old idolaters turned the image of a beast into God, and these new, turne the image of God into a beast. But idolatrie is a sinne; and are not idolaters sin­ners vnto hell? Fourthly, it is a chaine to adultery to drawe it in. For such eaters in excesse, and drinkers out of measure cannot beProu. 23.30.33. chaste persons; or there is no sleeping in these, and watching against adultery: and who can lay on more fewell but hee shall haue a greater flame? Ier. 5.8. Now, cannot adulterers without repentance be saued? and shall not that that maketh adulterers, be a sinne to dam­nation?

Heere we see in what a fearefull state they stand of wret­chednes,Vse. 1 and perdition from God, who follow that cursed fellowship which men call good fellowship. For whither doth it leade the followers, but to the house where the dead are? Prou. 9.18. Death is in the pot: 2.King. 4.40. Hell and death in their drunken pots: but if we will not be damned with such mates, we must not follow their damnable wales; that is, their pottes of excesse, and pipes of smoke: and where such liue to eate, we that would not be iudged such, must eate to liue to God. There are many Esaus now, and their number is without number that hunt all for the belly in the wide field of an Epicurish-life: but we must be of an­other number, and follow another course that meane to fol­low the Lambe, or to be the first fruit [...]s to God, and to Christ: Apoc. 14.4. And we that haue the hope of the Saints, must separate from such, alwaies in affection, and as much as wee may in body; selfe, as we delight in their company on earth, we must looke to beare them company in hell. Let them consider this, who can take no such delight in the fel­lowship [Page 12]of the Saints, as they take pleasure in the large fel­lowship of those drunken companions, who like a sprea­ding canker infect Towne and Countrie. It may be, if we runne not with them vnto the same excesse of riot, or be not combined in fellowship with them, when they thus poure out their heart to wickednes, they will speake euill of vs, 1. Pet. 4.4: yet let vs turne from such, if we would not be turned into hell with them, and with this rich man, one of the compa­nie: for better be euill spoken of for good deedes, then well for bad.

A terrour to all that make it their trade to eate and drinke in excesse:Vse. 2 for such offend to eternall death. In the dayes of Nee they ate, they dranke, that is, they did both exces­siuely: Luk: 17.27; and as they were drowned in such ex­cesse, so they were in the waters that tooke them away. So Sedom, burning with such lusts, was burnt with fire, and burneth now in hell fire, Iude. 7. Christians are called to serue in the hall, not in the kichen; to serue God, and not that which carnall men make their god, the belly. We must put on the Lord Iesus Christ, Rom. 13.14: and shall we thinke to put on him, and to keepe on flesh? The body is but the garment of the soule: and is the garment better then the body, the body then the soule? Or is not the body more worth then raiment? and so the body lesse worth then the soule, being but the raiment of it? Why then is there so much care for the belly to feede it, when the soule is so little cared for, to saue it? specially seeing that in such care of our bellies, and little care of our soules, we can haue no hope to be saued? Let them consider, who giue their time and soules to this vngodly loue of meates and drinkes in excesse. There are that gather by the Omer, and eate by the Ephah; Exod. 16.36, that is, where one dish were inough, they must haue tenne: and plaine Maister Nabal must feast like a King, 1. Sam. 25.36. Though there was oddes be­tweene Beniamins messe and his brethrens, fiue for one: Gen: 43.34, yer now men fare but coursely, except they fare bet­ter, or as well, as farre their betters doe. The sinne of Eli [Page 13]his sonnes hath taken hold vpon these dayes, wherein the custome of our temperate Ancestors is not kept. For meane persons are not contented with sod flesh: they must haue Manna and Quailes, sod and rosted too, or they fare not well. 1. Sam. 2.15. In our quaffing cuppes, we sacrifice to health, and speake of healths, when we prepare for nothing lesse, and the contrarie followeth; wherein we doe as some of the heathen did in the daies of sacrifice to their idols for health: for sacrificing for health, they banqueted drunken­ly to the preiudice of their health. But take we heede of the pottage so red, Gen. 25.30, that is, of the wine when it shew­eth red in the cup, Prou. 23.31: and of our morsells when they baite vs with their pleasantnes in the dish, least with Esau (that was prophane, and a cunning hunter of these things) we thinke the time long, till we haue eaten and drunke a­way the blessing. One telles a tale of a certaine Bird, which hath the face of a man, and yet is so fierce of nature, that sometime in her hunger she will prey vpon Man. This Bird (saith my Author) comming to the water to drinke, and seeing a face in it (which is her owne) like the face of that Man which before she deuoured; in great sorrow for one slain by her so like her selfe, she neuer after either eats or drinkes, but beates herselfe to death. I will not iustifie the tale: but me thinkes all drunkards and great deuourers, (not for any want, as that Bird, but for wanton and damna­ble pleasures) should conceiue great sorrow; greater then that Bird did, for killing of one; not like themselues, but their very selues. Me thinkes, if they would see that face in their cuppes of wine, and glasses of strong drinke, the face of that Christian man, whose graces and vertues, so many in one man, they haue beene the death of; they could not, (hauing reason, which the Bird we spake of hath not, and being greater murtherers by farre) but pierce themselues through with many sorrowes, not to death, but to true life by sound repentance. Or, how can they heare either of a strong man, or a sober man, or a wise man, and not be wounded with stings of horrible feare, in the loude crie of [Page 14]their consciences, telling them that they haue slaine so ma­ny men in themselues? And may they not say: of wise, we haue made our selues fooles; of strong, weake; of sober by calling, drunken and more then brutish by the custome of sinne? But when they shall enter into meditation of a farre worse estate, by such lusts in the body cruelly pulled vpon them to damnation, if God be not mercifull to them; nay if they be not mercifull to themselues to weepe presently and bitterly for all their vnsober conuersation, and turne to God, in a iust hatred of a course of life so murderous and vngodly: I say, when they shal thinke rightly of their estate so pittifull and terrible, caused by themselues; how can they but be amazed with a horrible dread, and so passe the rest of their dayes in feare, that they come not into condem­nation?

But (specially) this cruell rich man was condemned in that which he did, because he did it with the contempt of the poore. Then, though a man goe not apparelled as this man did, nor fare as he fared, that is, sumptuously or choise­ly euery day: yet, if with him, he forget to stretch out his hand to the needy, he may be damned as he was: though he haue not that which he had, yet if he lacke that which he had not, namely, the care of the poore, he may goe to hell. For, there are more waies to hell then one: and the vnmer­cifull, as well as the theefe and murtherer shall goe thither. Not only hee that getteth his goods ill; but he that spends them ill and wantonly, or holds them in couetously and cruelly, when there is neede of his mercy, shall beare his condemnation, whosoeuer he be. We may see it heere in this rich man: for we doe not reade either that he gate his riches and wealth ill, or tooke any thing by oppression from the poore and Lazarus; it was sufficient matter to his con­demnation in hell, that he did not vse his riches well, and to the reliefe of the poore in miserie.

Where learne againe,Doctr. 2. that Christians (if they would not be damned) must not onely not oppresse the poore mem­bers of Christ, but relieue, and doe for them in their neces­sitie, [Page 15]as God hath dealt the measure vnto them of his power and gift to doe it with. For the sentence of the great day proceedeth against the damned on Christs left hand, in this forme of words: Depart from me yee accursed into euer lasting fire. The reason is giuen: For I was an hungred, and yee gaue me no meate: I thirsted, and yee gaue me no drinke: I was a stranger, and yee lodged me not: naked, and yee clothed me not: sicke, and in prison, and yee visited me not. The Iudge doth not say; I was hungry, and yee tooke away my bread: and thirsty, and yee deceiued me of my drinke: or, I was har­bourles, because yee made me so: and naked, for you kept away my clothes. Nor doth he say; I was sicke, and yee af­flicted me, nor yee cast me into prison; but I was sicke and in prison, and yee came not to me. So the inhabitants of Meroz were accursed; not for taking part with the enimie, but for not taking the Lords part against his enimies, Iudg. 5.23. And the axe is laid to the roote of euery tree that bringeth forth no good fruit, though it bring forth no bad, for the cutting of it downe to death & hell, Mat. 3.10, though Christians, who should be trees of righteousnes in the Church, as it were garden of God, beare no euil fruit, yet if they beare no good, there hangeth ouer their heads an axe of cutting downe: Our good workes cannot saue vs; but our euill, or want of good, are able to condemne vs. This plea in mans Court, that we haue done no man harme, is good: but it will not hold in that Court, where not onely the euill done is iud­ged, but the good vndone must be answered for. To this agreeth that prouerbiall speech of Salomon: He that turneth away his care from the crie of the poore, he saith not, he that makes him cry, shal cry himselfe, and not be heard, Prou. 21.13. That is, though he fall into such miserie as shall make him crie, and that to God and man for helpe; yet neither God nor man shall helpe him. So it is proued, not only that we should not hurt the poore, if we will be saued; but that, (as their needes shall require) we must helpe them, to our best abilitie, if we will not perish with the cruell that cannot be saued.

The reasons are. Euery breach of the commandement deserueth hell and second death: Gal. 3.10, and this is one: Secondly, and more particularly; to omit this duty when there is cause, and we haue abilitie, what is it but with sinne, to keepe in our hands that which is Gods part, and the poores portion; and so to be guilty of, both sacrilege against God, and robbery against men? Prou. 3.27. When God makes vs rich, he makes vs but rich Stewards, with a charge not to keepe the Maisters goods in our owne hands, but to giue them to the proper owners, the poore. Neither is it robbery onely to neglect this seruice of God to Gods poore, but a kind of murther: Ecclus. 34.22, or a killing of those by cruelty, whose liues we might saue by almes. If then, either theft, or sacriledge, or murther, or all three de­serue death eternall; then that which is all the three, not to minister to the necessities of Gods poore, deserueth it. Thirdly, the vnfruitfull tree is cut downe for the fire. Math. 3: 10, and so must all vnfaithfull, that is, vnworking Christi­ans be for hel-fire.

A reproofe of those who thinke and say,Vse. 1 they may doe what they will with their owne: where, first, they are much deceiued, by calling that theirs, which is their Ma­sters, Luk. 16.1, 2. For the earth is his, Psalm. 24.1. and these things that are in it he hath deliuered vnder account to rich men, as to his Stewards, to lay them out; not as to Treasurers, to lay them vp; or, if as to Treasurers, to lay them vp: yet so to keepe them, that they be ready alwaies to bring them outfor the seruice of their Soueraigne, and the good of their fellow seruants: or, if these earthly goods were theirs, were it lawfull or reasonable to vse them, a­gainst the glory of the bountifull Giuer? If my Prince should rayse mee to honour, were it tolerable, were it not vilany to turne it against his Crowne and Honour? or, if a man should giue mee a dwelling house in the midst of a Towne, might I set it on fire because it is mine? and, may I kill a man with a weapon, because the weapon is mine owne, wherewith I slew him? Did Noah well to bee [Page 17] drunken with the fruite of his owne Ʋineyard? Gen. 9.20, 21. And who knoweth not that a man may abuse his owne? and that he should doe, (not all he may) but what he lawfully may? But to put the matter out of question: He that is Lord of all these things, of whom wee hold in capite, that is, in chiefe, hath but leased them out to the sonnes of men: and hee that is Master of this great house, wherein we are but Tennants for liues, as hath pleased him to set our terme therein, hath committed his goods to wealthy men, but with a limitation to vses appointed by himselfe, who is absolute, & may do with his owne what he will, Math. 20.15. He is the owner, and soueraigne owner of all, and we haue but leases in these things from Him, and that with certaine reseruations: As first, that we make no waste or spoile: for we may not consume these good things on our lusts. Secondly, that we performe the Lords ser­uice, keepe his Sabbaths, as it were Court-daies, and appeare in the assembly, when the people come together to worship be­fore the face of Iehoua. Thirdly, that we doe not denie him his rents, the praise which is due vnto his name: and when hee sends to vs by the poore his receiuers, that we send to him by them the fruits of his owne ground, by dealing merci­fully with them and not euill entreating them, as did those cruell husbandmen in the Gospel, whom therefore the Lord of the Ʋineyard destroied, Math. 21.34.35.36. &c. For the godly poore are his Baliues, and the gatherers of his rents, whō he sendeth to vs. Fourthly, that we acknowledge our homage by submitting to his lawes, and the orders of his Court. Fif [...]ly, that we abuse not our Lords land and goods to the maintenance of his enimies; as they who feede the bellies of the wicked, and starue his poore. Sixthly, that we plucke not vp his quichesets, and ioine land to land, till there be no more roome, Esa. 5.8, or place, to wit to be taken for our money. And lastly, that when any seruice is to be done for him, in the Church by the Minister, and in the com­mon-wealth by the King and his Ministers, we giue willing­ly vnto Caesar his tribute, and to the Minister his tithes. Fai­ling [Page 18]in these, the Lord of our wealth and liues may take these leases from vs, and pronounce all the estates we hold of him, forfaited and voide by misbehauiour. So he dealt with his Steward, from whom he tooke away the office and place which he abused, Luk. 16.2.3. And it is his great mer­cy, that he doth not, in like sort, presently enter vpon vs, and our estates, who haue so often and long by sundry mis­prisions, deserued a casting off. Now (then) let vs giue all these considerations their due respect, and say, if these things may be called our owne, for the which we are to giue to the Maister so strict account, when he shall say by death, to euery one of vs; thou canst no longer be Steward, Luke 16.2. which being so, men haue smal cause to be proud of this, that God hath set them vp in worldly riches and greatnes. For, to whom much is committed, of them much shall be required a­gaine, Luk. 12.48. The more men haue, the more men haue to answere for: and the more wealth, the more billes of debt to further, either their saluation or condemnation by Gods iust iudgement.

An admonition to all,Vse. 2 vpon the penaltie of damnation, to giue to Gods poore, as God hath giuen to them, and bles­sed them. God hath so cōmanded, Deu. 15.11. He that giues all, commands vs to giue to all that stand in need. Esay so saith, and sheweth why. His reason is: the poore are our flesh, Esa. 58.7. Brethren are neere; but our selues are nearere. One bro­ther may doe for another: but who is so vnkind that he will not doe for himselfe? It is a fruite of the spirit to couer the naked with a garment: Ezech. 18.7: but signe of an ill spirit to vncouer him, or to keepe his couer from him: And he is no good man who hauing two coates, will not giue one, ra­ther then see his brother perish for want of one, Luk. 3.11. Our Sauiour, who being rich, made himselfe poore to make vs rich, will haue vs to giue almes of such things as we haue, Luk. 11.41. That is, he requireth vs to giue almes, either in mo­ney, or in that which is money worth. And therefore, in Luk. 12.33, he bids vs sell that we haue, that we may haue to giue to such as neede. For some might say, I would wil­lingly [Page 19]giue something to Christ in his poore, but I haue no­thing to giue. Therefore saith Christ; you say you haue nothing to giue; but haue you nothing to sell? no corne in your Barne? no stuffe in your house? If any, rather then your brother should perish, sell it, and when it is sold, giue it to him. Neither doth Christ simply command this, but with promise of a recompence, who may command with­out it. For he saith: Giue out of these bagges, and I will giue you other and better bagges. And it is sure, if we lay vp a penny in heauen, we shall find a pound there: he that scatters there shall find a large increase. If we sowe anything vpon Christ Iesus, the seede of reliefe that is cast vpon him, is bestowed vpon a thankfull soile; it will returne with v­sury what we lay out vpon it. Christ is no barren ground, and a cup of cold water sowen vpon him, will rise to the great haruest of a cup of glory. Also and further, for the temporall returne, the Lord by Esay tels vs, that, If we re­fresh the hungry and troubled soule, hee will satisfie our soule in drought, and make our bones fat; and we shalbe like springs of water, whose waters faile not. Esa. 58.10. Heere are very large promises, and he that maketh them is faithfull, for is it not a great blessing of God to be prouided of springs of wa­ter in a great drouth? is not the fatting of the bones, in some common leannesse sent vpon others for a punishment, something worth? Is it not good prouidence to lay vp that in our daies of plenty, which will be sure, not onely to come againe, but to watch the time, when for our neede, it shall be most welcome to vs? and who would not giue, so to receiue againe? But all this is promised here by the Lord vnder the broad seale of his word. And why should wee (then) be so slacke in the liberall laying out of something for an euill day? why should we feare to cast our bread vp­on such waters, where it will be found againe? and to make God our pay-maister by giuing to his poore, Prou. 19.17, seeing all that we so giue shall be repaid so surely, and with such increase? But further to prouoke vs to a worke of charitie so gainfull, and so commanded: let vs remember that it is [Page 20]not onely a deede of mercy, but worke of iustice to giue to Gods poore: so saith Dauid, Psal. 112.9; where he telles vs that a good man is alway doing good, and that his righte­ousnes, that is, worke thereof abideth euer; and not for a while, or for a few good fits. By righteousnes, he meaneth the worke of mercy to the poore, which hee calleth not changeable, but constant mercy: and he calleth it righte­ousnes, because it is not an arbitratie but commanded du­ty: nor at our owne choise, which we may doe, or leaue vn­done; but straightly enioined. And therefore as the rich haue right to the maine estate by Gods bounty; so the ouer­plus, and that which they may spare, is the poores by vertue of that donation. That therefore which they may spare is not their owne, but the poores; from whom, if with this rich man and merciles, they withhold the crummes of their superfluitie, with him they may cry, when there shall be no bearing. Looke I am. 5.1. I tell thee, the poore haue as good right to the waste bread of thy estate, as thou hast to the full table it selfe; and it is ratified to them by the same authori­tie, that the larger portion is sealed vnto thee. But heere stan­deth the difference asM. Io. Down. who hath writ­ten fully and excellently of this ar­gument, in his booke of benefi­cence. one saith; God hath giuen vnto thee thy riches immediately, but to them he giueth theirs mediately by thee. But to proceede a little farther: Christ Iesus in his last day of iudgement, wil pronounce that to be done to himselfe which is done to his poore, Math. 25.40: and contrarily, that to be taken from him, which is denied to them, v. 45. Now tell me, if Christ himselfe should come to begge lodging of thee, wouldst thou not giue him lod­ging, and (if need were) the vse of thine owne bed? When a poore Christian doth as much, it is all one, as if Christ did so by him: and therefore what thou deniest to a Christi­an, thy Sauiour will take as denied to himselfe in that Christian, and say; Forasmuch as yee did it not to the least of these, yee did not to me; therefore shall yee goe into euerlasting paine, as the righteous shall passe to life eternall, Mat. 25.45.46. But, lest any should thinke himselfe not to be charged with giuing because he is not rich, the Apostle S. Paul sheweth [Page 21]that this duty belongeth both to rich and poore, Eph. 4.28. Where the poore labouring man is commanded to practise loue, and the duties of loue vpon his needy brother. And if we would haue an example for it, we haue a good one in the poore widow who cast her two mites into the coffer of the poore, which was all the substanc [...] that she had, Mar. 12.43.44. God will haue the poore (therefore) to spare somewhat of their pouerty, to the comfort of Christ in his needy members. Now, if these arguments and examples cannot moue vs; let vs knowe that the iudgements are certaine and will come, that are threatned against all mercilesse rich men, such as Di [...]es heere. The Lord so abhorreth this crueltie of turning away from the poore, that he threatneth it, as one of Sodoms sinnes, with fire and brimstone from heauen, Ezech. 16.49. And as he that giueth vnto the poore shall not lacke; so hee that hideth himselfe from him, shall haue many a curse, that is, many a plague from God, Prou. 28.27. One is, he shall beg a drop of cold water in hell, and it shall not be giuen him: Another, and that which containeth all miseries, plagues and curses is: hee himselfe shall crie, and not be heard, Prou. 21.13. A pitilesse eye that will not visit his brother, and a mer­cilesse eare that will not heare of his brother in his necessity, God will not spare, and good men will not pitie: and so that shall be verified which Iames faith, and threatneth to such, or the holy Ghost by him: There shall be iudgement merciless [...] to him who hath shewed no mercy, I am. 2.13. The fruites that he reapeth, are such as the seede which he hath sowen: He hath sowen the seede of cruelty, and he shall reape it: he loued not mercy, and his iudgement shall be without mercy: he would not open his gates to the poore; and God who openeth his gates to them, will shut them a­gainst him: hee would not giue them the bread of his dogges, and God will not giue him the bread of heauen. He hated the poore, and he that loueth his poore, will hate him: he denied the crummes which Lazarus asked, and could not haue in hell that drop of water which he asked, So much [Page 22]for that which is spoken of the rich man while he was vpon the earth; that which is spoken of Lazarus, followeth.

Verse. 20.

And there was a certaine Begger, named Lazarus.

This poore man may be the patterne or mould of that other state of men which we shall haue alwayes with vs: but so, as by neither states of rich or poore, it can be knowne or iudged whether a man be loued or hated of God, Eccles. 9.1. For no man can say: This is a rich man, therefore God lo­ueth him.

My reason is, the one of these was rich, and not loued; not because he was rich, but because he was naught: The o­ther was loued, though poore; not because he was poore, but because he was good. So that this diuersitie of states is indifferent, and from God: prouided that the rich man be­come lawfully rich, and the poore man be made poore as Lazarus heere, by sicknesse and sores, not by any intem­perate spendings.

And this teacheth that pouerty and riches are not simply euill,Doctr. 1. but by abuse. Abraham, Isaac, Ioseph, Iob, and others were rich men, and yet good men: And Ruth and Lazarus were poore, and not euill. Paul an excellent Apostle, and yet a poore man, 2. Cor. 4.8: Also, Peter, a worthy Apostle, said to the poore creeple; Siluer and gold I haue none: and rich Salomon was a figure of the riches which we haue in Christ.

The reasons. The Lord maketh poore, and maketh rich: 1. Sam. 2.7: or, the poore and rich together, as passingers who comming from coutrarie quarters, meete in one mid way: and so he that is rich to day, may be poore to morrow: but what followes? The Lord is the maker of them both: That is, he that made them, makes this change in them, Prou. 22.2. Now what God hath made, or doth make cannot be euill. Gen. 1.31.

Secondly, it is good that some should be full to giue, and some empty to receiue what is giuen, Deut. 15.11. And if no man were in want, who shall be serued? and who would doe seruice, as now, necessitie compelling them? or, how could mercy be shewed, if there were not any to ex­ercise mercy on?

Thirdly; God that by his lawe hath forbidden to steale, doth by the same lawe allowe to a man his interest and peace in that which is his, Exod. 20.15. And if he haue such title to it by Gods allowance: his hauing of it cannot be simply euill.

An instruction, contentedly to beare a poore estate,Vse. 1 see­ing it is not euill; and not couetously to affect a wealthy life, seeing it is not good, but by good vse. If our purse be full of money, and our soule be as full of wickednes, what better are we? or rather how much worse? For, we haue euill in our heart, and more opportunities by a wealthy estate (being euill) to vtter it: A rich euill man may farre goe beyond a poore euill man in deedes of wickednes. And what dost thou knowe what bad wares are in thy heart, which the venom of riches must needes make worse, because more communicable by the infectious aire of thy example and authoritie, being made rich and great? Which being so; what hast thou gotten by thy wealth so much de­sired, but more weapons to wound thy soule deeper to death? Besides; can thy riches saue thee from death? Heere we haue a man that was very rich, and yet died: or, can they deliuer thee from hell? Be as rich as thou maist, as rich as thou haue gone to hell. Nay, they cannot cure thee of a poore ague, or from the least of Gods stroakes saue thee: how much lesse can they saue thy body from death, or thy body and soule from eternall death?

This secondly, should excite vs, if we haue wealth,Vse. 3 to be thankfull to God for it; for hee maketh rich: or if we be poore, to be contented; for he maketh poore. Not to helpe our selues by vnlawfull or cunning shifts, when we are poore: no [...] when God hath made vs rich, to defie him (as it [Page 24]were) by vsing our wealth to his dishonour, and by trusting to the broken staffe of riches. Trust not in robbery, saith Da­uid; and if riches increase, trust not in them, Psal. 62.10. As if it were robbery, and so it is, and that against God, so to doe. Salomon likewise bids vs not to leane to our owne wis­dome, that is, shifts or fetches: as if he had said; though you haue wealth in abundance, and the world at will, trust not to that; for what trust is in that? but make God your trust. Some take their wealth of God, and thanke the diuell for it; by giuing praise, with Belshazzar, to their gods of gold and siluer, Dan. 5.4; not to the true God who giues them their gold and siluer. Some also in necessitie, will bowe downe to sinne, in one false tricke or other, to helpe themselues. Such care not to lye and to dissemble, and to sweare falsely, or to sweare anything for an aduantage: and some hauing abundance, trust their whole weight vnto it, as to a staffe that will neuer faile. But God breakes that staffe suddenly which they thinke will hold euer, and in a moment, they are turned out of all. I need not to goe farre for examples; we haue inowe, dead and liuing; and let the liuing lay it to heart, whatsoeuer the dead did. And now (more particularly) for Lazarus.

Lazarus is described heere by certaine attributes, and effects. The attributes are, his miserable condition of life: his name: and his sores. The effects are proper to himselfe, or out of himselfe in other. The proper effects are, he lay at the rich mans gate house, and desired a refreshing from the crummes, or leauings of his full table. The miserable con­dition of this poore man was, that he was driuen to begge. The text saith, there was a certaine begger. God would not haue a begger in Israel: that is, he would haue none so much neglected in Christian Israel, as that he should be compelled to begge, or (begging) to goe from doore to doore. There­fore, that Lazarus was thus forced to begge, was the fault of the time, not his, who (being full of sores) could not other­waies doe.

Which againe teacheth,Doctr. 2. that it is a corrupt time and state [Page 25]where the poore are not prouided for, but by begging at doores. Dauid saith, He neuer sawe the seede of the righteous begge, Psal. 37.25. Dauid neuer sawe it; and in a Church well ordered, it cannot be seene. The poore yee shall haue al­wayes with you, saith Christ, Ioh. 12.8. He saith, the poore, but not the begging poore: and the text of Deuter. 15.4, is com­monly alledged against beggers in Israel according to the old Latine reading: but that the Israel of Gods Church should haue no such in it, may further appeare by these rea­sons.

The reasons: for first, it proclaimes the shame of Christi­ans, that should prouide for their poore in other maner, that is, charitably at home, and not by clamour at doores.

Secondly, it openeth a gappe to rogues and vagabonds, who vnder the colour of begging, will be of no certaine Church or ciuill companie, but in nature of Outlawes: and so as rotten armes and legges, ready to drop from the body, they seeme members, and are not.

Thirdly, Gods ordinance is, that the members of the Church should haue their particular lawfull callings in it, and not liue like wanderers or strayes in no calling. Lastly, there is not onely a lawe in Moses, but a statute in England against it, Elizab. 39. Now if all this be so intollerable, it must needes be confessed, that it is a corrupt time and state, wherein an abuse so intollerable, is not reformed.

By this it may be iudged,Vse. that we now liue in a corrupt time of the Church, though the religion we professe be ho­ly and good. For against the stature of the land and law of God, many are suffered to begge (not full of sores as Laza­rus here, and yet our shame should be great if it were no o­ther waies;) but strong and sturdy beggers, men and wo­men, who can giue no good account of their wandering life: Yea, many married vnder a hedge (if at all) are suffered without all shame and good conscience, to increase the Church and Common-wealths store with the seede of bastardy, and vncleane copulation. Doth not this both preach to our eares, and proue to our faces, that somewhat [Page 26]in the Church, and somewhat in the Common-wealth is out of course? Or is order respected, and good law execu­ted as it ought, where such vngodly dissolutenesse is neither restrained, nor looked vnto? O that the sword of excom­munication, and the Magistrates sharpe sword of iustice were walking here: that both would acquite themselues (as they are ordained) for the cutting off, or amendment of such offendors: which I can but pray for, and so proceede: the name of this poore man followeth.

Named Lazarus.

We heard that the wicked rich mans name was not spo­ken of, we heare what this godly poore mans name is. For it is here set downe in Gods register, and said to be Lazarus. And so we see (as was obserued vpon the 19. verse, the first doctrine) that where the righteous haue an honorable memoriall, the wicked haue none, or of no good sauor; but as a snuffe, burning in the socket after the last flame of life. But this hath bin already spoken of. This good mans name is Lazarus, or Eleazar: by interpretation, Gods helpe. We say to our beggers, God helpe you; but God saith to them that be godly, and begge; I will helpe where man will not. And here we learne that the righteous,Doctr. though poore, are respected of God: so are not the wicked, though rich. A­braham the father of belieuers, and himselfe an excellent be­lieuer, had not one foote of ground in the land wherein hee was a stranger; yet how rich became poore and vnlanded Abraham, by Gods fauour? Who was greater with God then he? and who was called the friend of God, as he? Esay 41.8. Ruth was very poore; yet being poore and godly, how carefully did God looke vnto her, as in his owne per­son; and how richly in marriage, did hee bestowe her? Ruth. 2.8.11.12.15.16. & 3.10.11.15. & 4.10.13. And doth not Annah, in her song, say; that God raiseth vp the poore (she meaneth the godly poore) out of the dust, and lif­teth vp the begger, that is, beggers such as Lazarus the begger [Page 27]was, to set them among Princes, and to make them inherite the seate of glory? 1. Sam. 2.8. If we would haue more exam­ples, there are a cloud of them in the holy story. The scope of which, containing the couenants that are betweene God and his Church, giuen vnder the broad seales of the old and new Testament; doth shewe plainely and fully, that the righteous people in whose heart the Lords word is, are sure alwaies of comfort and safety from him. And there­fore in sundry Psalmes, as 119.1.2, & 112.1, such are called blessed; because he that hath called them, will blesse them. With this, Dauid made his pillowe, when he lay downe to sleepe: Psal. 4.8: and in assurance of this, both Dauid, and the seede of Dauid had great confidence, in their greatest ad­uersitie; knowing that they could not but do well, or be in safety whom the Prince himselfe will countenance, Hest. 6.6.11. Therefore the same Dauid, speaking of a righteous person, promiseth him, that the Lord will be his shield and buckler, Psal. 91.4. Now, if God be the shield and buckler of the righteous, then they that strike at them, must strike through him, before they can come at them.

The reasons. The righteous are called Gods house, or temple, that is, his house of holinesse: not which he setteth out to Tenants, but keepeth in his owne hands, and dwelles in himselfe. Now, will a man suffer his enimie to beate his house downe vpon him, because it is a poore one, if he can chuse? But God can chuse: and he that is righteous, though poore, is Gods pallace; and what feare then that he shall not be kept? or who dare offer to pull downe Gods house; the pallace which he respecteth so much, and not be sure himselfe to be pulled in pieces, when it shall stand? for he that is a wall of defence to his people, will be a wall of fire to his peoples enimies, Zechar. 9.8. & 2.5. Secondly, the righteous, though poore, haue Gods image in them, and are as those children that in most things resemble their father. Now, if men loue those children most that are most like them; will not God much respect his owne image, or ra­ther himselfe in a true Christian? Thirdly, true Christians, [Page 28]and new creatures in God, are Christs full brothers by father and mother. For by the mothers side they partake with him in flesh, and in spirit by the fathers. Now if such be full bro­thers to Christ; then are they deare children to God in Christ, and he that is so well pleased with him, in him, can­not be displeased with them. Nay, if Christs halfe brothers (as I may say) partakers of flesh as he, and comming from his creation, as men, Apoc. 3.14, haue so many shun shines of his common fauour in outward things; shall not the chil­dren that are begotten with the word of truth, and haue a better nature poured into them then these sonnes by crea­tion haue, be farre more respected then they? and shall they not haue the double blessing, who haue issued from the wombe of God, in the regeneration? Fourthly, God said to Abraham, and what he said to him, is spoken to all the faith­full, in him; Feare not Abraham, neither be afraide yee seede of Abraham, I am your buckler, and your exceeding great re­ward, Gen. 15.1. Now hee that is so to the righteous, must needes be much vnto them, and much tender them. Fiftly, the Lord hath made a couenant with such as are godly (though they be poore, so they be poore and godly) of his saluation and blessing: and sooner shall his couenant of the day and night be broken, sooner shall it cease to be day and night in their seasons, then he will violate the couenant he hath made with his people of their safetie and peace, Ier. 33.16.20.21. But we see that God hath kept his word more then fiue thousand yeeres for day and night: and will he, for that which is more deare vnto him by his owne mercy and the merit of his Sonne, goe from his promise to the righteous in their saluation? For saluation belongeth to the Lord, and this blessing is vpon his people, Psal. 3.8.

An instruction if we would haue Gods fauour) to loue and followe righteousnes:Vse. 1 for he must respect and practise pietie that would haue God to be fauourable. So saith Da­uid: He hath chosen the man that is godly, Psal. 4.3. Not euery man, but the righteous man: and he knoweth, that is de­fendeth the way of the righteous; where the way of the [Page 29]wicked, neither so knowne, nor assisted by him, must needs perish Psal. 1.6. If then we would haue a sure naile in Gods safetie, and not wauer or doubt when many are shaken, we must thus be established. And who would not be preser­ued, when thousands perish? Euen Balaam would die the death of the righteous, Num. 23.10. He that loued not righte­ousnes, desired to die as the righteous: but because he desi­red his last end, whose beginnings & middle to it, he neuer cared for, he had his end, not in peace as the righteous, but in blood: For he was slaine with the sword of the children of Israel among the cursed Midianites, Num. 31.8. It is al­waies thought to be the best husbandry (and for worldly husbandrie it is) most to affect that, that will be sure to doe vs the most earthly good: and therefore if siluer be offered, we preferre it before brasse; as we doe gold before siluer, if we may haue it. And he were but a foole or mad man, who running for a crowne of gold, would be cast behind, for the taking vp of euery pin or point that might be laid in his way. This good husbandry would be seene in our care to be good, the onely way to be happy, and safe in dangers: and that other folly and madnes would be auoided in out race of religion, as the apparent losse of our crowne of glory, 1. Cor. 9.24.25. &c. And here let vs knowe and remember, that gold, compared with the way of righteousnes, is infi­nitely worse then it; yea [...]viler then the basest copper com­pared with the finest gold, and the vilest clay set in like com­parison with the purest siluer. And what comparison be­tweene a crowne of gold, and the crowne of righteousnes? Or, were it folly, yea madnes, for pinnes and trifles to lose the prize of an earthly crowne: and is it not greater both folly and madnes for the trifling pinnes of this life to lose the crowne of the next? and for vncertaine rest, or rather certaine vnrest, to aduenture, nay lose all surety of true peace and sound happines, here and hence? The Apostle S. Paul, when he speaketh of the happinesse of our other life, magnifieth the same farre aboue all temporall felicities, both for worth and continaunce; and therefore calleth it a [Page 30] farre most excellent, and eternall weight of glory, 2. Cor. 4.16.17. To be excellent is much: to be most excellent is farre more: and more yet, to be farre most excellent: but that which is added of being an eternall weight of glory, surpasseth them all, as it is said of the vertuous woman by Lemuel, or Sa­lomon in the Prouerbes of Salomon, Prou: 31.29. Saluation then, which the Scripture calleth the saluation of God, be­ing so excellent, or farre most excellent a commodity, be­sides temporall safety, & other blessings temporall into the bargaine; should incite vs to become holy and righteous as Lazarus, that we may find the fruit which he did, though we haue not his name▪ that is, may find Gods helpein deed, as he had it, in name and deede.

A comfort to those whose consciences are vpright and set in the care of religion.Vse. 2 For, God much respecteth them, though the wicked mocke them for it. They that take Ha­bakukes course, and tremble at the word, shall be in Haba­kukes case, and haue rest, that is, securitie, in the day of affliction, Haba. 3.16. Such are a house built vpon the seuen pillars of God, Prou. 9.1. And that which is so built, and by so wise a buil­der, must needes stand in all weather and changes, Math. 7.25. Wicked men are as chaffe and dust that are driuen away with a small winde of aduersitie: Psal. 1.4: but as possible it is for a man with his little finger, to ouerturne a moun­taine or high hill, as to ouerthrowe the hopes and quiet estate of the righteous, Psal. 125.1. The gates of hell, and all the diuels in hell cannot preuaile against a true Christian, Math. 16.18, whose best welfare and safety, is not as a cot­tage builded on rotten props, but as a castle that standeth on mighty pillars. Let the wicked then, with their fellowes in euill, Iob. 21.15. Mal. 3.14, blaspheme the good way of righteousnes, saying, that it is to no purpose to be so godly, and precisely religious; and that they are more wise that take more libertie: here we see that the righteous haue a foundation, and that he who hath builded them as mount Sion, is that maisterbuilder, whose worke abideth euer: All the haires of their head are numbred, Math, 10.30. True it is, [Page 31]that the raine and floods may beate vpon this house, and it may leese, as did Peter, Math. 26.70.72.74, a few tiles in the wind; yet can it not fall, for it is grounded on a rock, Math. 7.25. God hath not promised that we shall haue no troubles, if we be godly; for who hath more? and La­zarus here had many; which wise do me foresaw, and there­fore made her house so strong: but the truth is, that the good will of him that dwelleth in the bush, will keepe it from consuming, though it doe not from burning, Exod. 3.2, and that though troubles beate vpon vs yet they shall not sinke vs. Thus the Apostle of the Gentiles was persecuted, but not forsaken: and thus we also may be cast downe, and not perish, 2. Cor. 4.9. So much for this poore mans name, Lazarus: His sores follow.

Full of sores.

The sores of this poore man were not fewe, but many, and ouer all his body. The text saith, he was full of them: the meaning is; his body was filled with vlcers, biles, and running sores: so sore that he could not worke, and so neg­lected that he was made to begge: which the more aggra­uates this rich mans churlish and inhumane sinne; as also the sinne of the Church or place, wherein such cruelty was shewed to one in Gods image And so this rich man is con­demned, and the Church shamed, that should better haue prouided for one so full of sores. And it is not to be doub­ted but that for such a purpose, his generall sores, his great hunger, and lame limmes are so precisely remembred: who therefore should haue bin relieued with the common purse of the Church or Parish in which hee liued: they should haue sent to him; and at home prouided for him: there­fore they are censured here as merciles, that they did not so.

And this teacheth, that such Lazar-persons in a Parish,Doctr. as are full of sores, sicke at home, house-pent, or bed-rid, should be visited with the mercy of a common collecti­on: or, they that are appointed in such cases Ouerseers, [Page 32]should come home to them, in person, see their wants and miseries, and accordingly prouide for them out of that that is gathered for such vses: for seeing they cannot come to vs, is it not necessary wee should send to them?

And that there should bee such a common collection made, may bee prooued by the Apostles charge to the Church of Corinth, which, in that Church, is giuen to e­uery Church and Parish now; That euery one put aside by himselfe, and lay vp as God hath prospered him: to wit, for common gatherings, 1. Cor. 16.2.

Also, that there should bee such sending to the poore, without comming: for it is plaine by another charge gi­uen in this very matter, by godly Nehemiah, who willed the people, in the day of their feast, and after they them­selues had eaten and drunke of the best, to send vnto them for whom none is prepared, Nehem. 8.10. Hee sayeth, Sexd it: He sayth not, Let them come to your doores to begge it. But some cannot come; and Lazarus (here) with much adoe came to the rich mans gate. Such should be visited by the godly rich in their poore and homely holes. So Iob, hee that is called the Father of the poore, for his mercies to the poore, did not onely feede and clothe those whome hee knew to bee hungry and without couer; but, lest any should perish, whom hee could not heare of, hee enquired with his tongue, and vsed his eyes to see them, Iob 31.17.19. Such an Ouerseer of the poore was this mercifull man in his dayes. Christ, also, speaketh of visiting the sick, and in prison, in his last doome of [...]udgement; and pro­nounceth sentence of damnation against those that had not lo done, Mat. 25.36.43. Where it appea [...]eth to be a necessary dutie in the richer Parishioners, not onely to helpe those that, in great extremitie, come vnto them; but to enquire of those that cannot come, and haue more neede: and lest they should faile in pittie, to goe to their houses and see them: For when they goe thus with Moses, to looke vpon their burthens, Exod. 2.11, by that stronger at­tractiue to pitty, (seeing) they cannot but be more moued [Page 33]to be mercifull. And therefore S. Iames speaketh of visiting the fatherlesse and Widdowes in their aduersitie, Iam. 1.27. not onely of relieuing them when they come; but of seeing them, and seeing to them, when they cannot come: for he knew, and would haue vs to know, that to see the poore and sicke in their pittifull houses and neede, will more stirre a man in his bowells of mercy, then bare hearing can. And indeede it must needes be more profi­table, and more worke vpon vs, when wee see our owne wretched condition in their chaine: that is, that which God might haue layde vpon vs, and hath translated to them, then if it were but reported to vs: for wee may doubt of the report; but neede not when wee haue seene: also, they may speake of lesse; but we shall know all when we see it our selues. And, and we are bound in the chaine of a commaundement, thus to visite the poore and sicke, that is, with our owne eies to doe it, & not in a borrowed fight, with others eyes, may further be proued.

The Reasons. For, (first) it is made by Saint Iames a speciall propertie of true Religion, Iam. 1.27. and, if a spe­ciall propertie of Religion, then they that doe otherwaies, are (improperly) religious.

Secondly, were are naturally vnmercifull, and except we see, wee will not beleeue: therefore for this cure of our hard hearts, it is needfull to goe home to the poore, bound with fetters of sicknesse to their beddes or houses, that we may see with our owne eyes, and not darkly, as through Spectacles, by those whom we send.

Thirdly, this dutie vnperformed, they may dye for want, as Lazarus at the rich mans gate: and if they doe their bloud will be required at the Parish hands, which, for not looking better to them, haue shed it. I tell you, the King will be answered for a Subiect: and God will not lose a Christian.

Fourthly, without this, we are strangers to our brothers loue: and if we be; and so, or by being so, shut vp, to wit, in an vncharitable hardnesse, our compassions from [Page 34]him, by not comming to him, how can the loue of God be in vs, saith Saint Iohn? 1. Iohn 3.17.

Not sufficient therefore to giue at our doores; but we must enquire, or hearken after such as are in want; specially poore and sicke-house keepers, chiefely those of the hous­hold of faith: and hearing of them, we must send vnto them according to our store. For loue is painefull, and en­deth not in a pennie-almes, but is rich in good workes, 1. Cor. 13.7. 1. Tim. 6.17. Charitie bindeth vs that are Christians, to more then to the giuing of a pennie by the way, or of a peece of bread to beggars at our doore. For our Sauiour Christ, charging the vnmercifull on his left hand, that they had neglected to doe good where they owed it, to wit to his poore; speaketh of more then of feeding the hun­grie, or of giuing them a cup of drinke. For he saith further: I was naked and yee clothed me not, a stranger and yee lodged me not; sicke and in prison, and yee visited me not, Math. 25.43. In which particulars, Christs meaning is to shewe that mer­cy is to be exercised in all these, and that the doing of one of them, or of two, excuseth not a Christian. Therefore ho­ly Iob did not onely not ea [...]e his morsells alone, but made the poore to drinke of his fountaines, and warmed the naked with his fleece, and receiued home vnto him the wandring stranger. This did Iob, the father of the poore; who well deserued the name. And so should all rich-christians doe: and such be, or may well be called, Fathers of the poore, as Iob was. For as a naturall father prouideth not onely bread for his child, but raiment, lodging, and other necessaries: so rich and able Christians should as fathers, not onely doe one but all of these duties to Gods poore, as to the children of God, and their brethren in him. All cannot doe all this, and some that haue the best minde, haue the fewest meanes; yet let such offer their two mites, the gift of their good will, and it will suffice. And now to moue the vnwilling to a worke of such import, and so commanded; let them first consider that the case of the poorest may (God knowes how soone) be made theirs. They are rich to day, they may be poore [Page 35]to morrow: and who shall giue to them, who (when they were able) would giue to none? Prou. 21.13. May not their owne measure be returned? may they not iustly be serued with it? Math. 7.2.

Secondly, God in both Testaments requireth this duty vnder great penalties: if he had not, it is our debt to him, who giues vs all: and should we not pay it?

Thirdly, we are members one of another: 1. Cor. 12.26, and will one member see another perish, and not succour it? Or when we are full, shall we thinke no man is empty? When are in our warme house, that none is harbourlesse? that no man is sicke, when we are whole? and no man in trouble, when we are at rest? And because we haue abun­dance, that no man feeleth want? Shall nature teach one member to helpe another? and shall not grace, or the bond of grace, bind the members of Christ, one to relieue an­other?

Fourthly, the reward is great, for a cup of cold water the cup of glory, Math. 10.42. And shall we we not haue respect to the recompence of reward? Hebr. 11.26. To lend vnto men vp­on vsury is forbidden, Psal. 15.5. but to lend so to God, by gi­uing to his poore, is commanded, Math. 25.27. Of all vsu­ries, this is safest, and hath the richest returne.

Fiftly, we are but stewards, not owners of the goods we call ours; and they are matters of trust from God, and not of priuate interest to those that haue them. Now shall the steward turne into his owne profite, or bury in his owne pleasures his Maisters money, and not come to his ac­count for it? The steward, that did so, (as we heard) was reckened with: Luk. 16.2, and such vniust stewards shall be sure to heare one day; Giue an account of thy stewardship, Luk ibid.

Sixtly, God giueth vs the example, who giueth abu [...] ­dantly to all: and should we not be followers of God? Eph. 5.1. Should we not be mercifull, as our heauenly father is mer­cifull? Luk. 6.36. Nay, he that died for vs feeds vs, that is, spi­ritually feedes vs with his body, and will we not feede him with [Page 36]our meate? He clothes vs with his righteousnes, and shall we thinke it much to cloth him with our cast apparell? He hath prepared for vs in heauen; and will we doe nothing for him on earth? Now what we doe to poore Christians, we doe to him: and what we doe to him, must be in more then in a peece of bread giuen him at our doores; we must lodge him, and clothe him, and doe other things vnto him: freely we haue receiued, freely we must giue, Math. 10.8. So much for this poore mans sores; the effects, by which he is further des­cribed, follow. The first is.

Which was laid at his gate, &c.

In the greeke; Who was laid prostrate, or all along at the rich mans gate-house. It is like, he could neither stand nor sit, he was so full of sores. And where we reade of the rich mans gate-house; it may be gathered he had a large and stately house: a house of great receit, and many in house, be­sides his traine of seruants, and the company of dogges he kept. And though all these had house-roome sufficient, and inough for the belly, yet a righteous poore man full of sores and hunger, lying at his doore, could haue nothing. For (as followeth) though he desired but crummes, he could not haue them. What can the rich man say to this? that he saw him not? He could not goe out of doores, but he must see him: for he lay at his gate. That he was able to worke? He was full of sores, and could not. That he had no such neede? wherefore then did he begge crummes, and not the whole bread of the rich mans table? That there were ma­ny, and he could not serue all? We reade but of one, euen Lazarus. That hee might haue gone to other house [...] to begge somewhere? It seemes he could goe no further, by his lying along in the place, and his speedy death there: that he might haue chosen to come thither? Necessitie drou [...] him; and hope to find something, where so much was stir­ring, inui [...]ed him: the rich man fared well, and sumptu­ously, euery day. This rich man (therefore) is without all [Page 37]excuse; as his dealing was without all mercy toward so poore a man. But where one so respected of God, is so humbled by him at a Churles gate,Doctr. we learne that it is no­thing strange, God should beginne his visitation at his owne house. Saint Peter saith, The time is come, that it must beso, 1. Pet. 4.17, and Christ: Our friend Lazarus sleepeth: Ioh. 11.11. That is, is already dead, v. 14. So when the de­stroyers were sent against Ierusalem, their charge from God was, to beginne at home, at his owne Sanctuarie, Ezech. 9.6. And when the Lord would visit the proud heart of the King of Ashur with his destructions; he professeth to doe all his worke, to wit, of visitation vpon mount Sion and Ierusalem, his owne citie and houshold people first, Esay 10.12. Ier. 25.12. The bitter cup of indignation, spoken of by Iere­mie, was prepared for many Kings, and a large people and world of men; but who must drinke first? and to whom was this cup of desolation by the sword first sent? Was it not to the cittie where his name was called vpon, Ier. 25.29. & 49.52. Was not Ierusalem plagued first, and many and great nations after her? So a poore man heere is sore visited, and the rich man spared till his turne come.

The reasons. He that is the Maister of a family, will haue an eye to his owne house before strangers. So he that is the Lord of his people, will first looke to his owne houshold people, and after to the strange-children. He will first nur­ture with correction his owne sonnes and seruants; and then smite with destruction and plagues all that are forth of his house, being not sonnes nor seruants, but enimies.

Secondly, it more iustifieth the Lord, when he will not spare sinne at home; so neare him; and cannot but more si­lence the enimie when God shall visit for his sinne. For he hath lesse to say against him when his owne haue not escaped.

Thirdly, God will not haue his children condemned with the world; therefore he will chasten them, when hee spares the world, that is, sinners in the world, 1. Cor. 11.32. He will pull them in betimes, and because he lou [...]s them, [Page 38]deale sharply with them, Hebr. 12.6, when the wicked shall goe free: as a father seeing two boyes fighting, whereof the one is his owne, will correct the child that is his, and let the other passe.

Then,Vse 1 though we be Gods children and houshold ser­uants, yet are we not exempt from the rod of his people: there is a iudgement that befalles both good and bad, and this beginnes at Gods owne house: and though none haue more securitie then the godly in common calamities, yet this promise to them, being but of temporall blessings, is to be vnderstood with the exception of the crosse, Psal. 89.32.33. Joh. 16.33. For as the mother that waines her child, layeth wormwood or some other bitter thing vpon her breast to make the child to leaue it so because, we are too much af­fected naturally to the world, that is, to the lusts of those profits and pleasures which are therein, except we be wained from it by some miseries and crosses here; therefore hath God layd vpon it the wormewood of calamitie and trou­bles, to the end that we (his children) might not too long hang vpon the breasts of it for weake and vaine matters, or that which is but the simple food of worldlings. What if God had for any long time, spared the vse of his rod and staffe toward Dauid, his owne King. Psal. 23.4. He himselfe or another in like case (if not he) telles vs: before I was af­flicted I went astray, Psal. 119 67. The Lord laid this rod away, but for a little space, by giuing him some rest from warre and troubles abroad; and so soone as he awaked from his afternoones sleepe, he beheld a sight, such as Adam after his sinne, sawe; who sawe himselfe naked, and ranne from God, Gen. 3.7.8. 2. Sam. 11.2.3.4. Againe, till God brought him to his Sanctuary to schoole; how foolish and ignorant w [...]s he, and how like a beast before him? Psal. 73.17.22. Are we better then Dauid? or could not Dauid be ru­led without strokes, and can we? Therefore necessary it is, that iudgement which beginneth at Gods house, should (if we be of this house) beginne also at vs.

A terrour therefore,Vse. 2 to those who feele no worke of sor­row [Page 39]in their minde, or outward members. For except they can make sure, that they haue no sinne, it is fearefull to be at such ease. And if iudgement be ginne at Gods house, ei­ther they are not of that building, or his iudgments must beate vpon them. Besides, continuall quietnes and peace in a sinners state, proues that the strong man hath possession, Luk. 11.21. But where a Christian is once made, there is no end of stirres in the body, or warre in our mortall bodies, the flesh lusting against the Spirit, Galat. 5.17, till one side yeeld: which is neuer seene in the children of regeneration, till corruption, that goeth not out but with the going out of the last enimie be done away. Further, we are senslesse of sinne, except God make it bite, as if he gaue it teeth by his corrections: and if our hearts doe not smite vs, as Dauids, him, 2. Sam. 24, how merrily doe we goe away with sinne, carrying it as easily as Sampson did the gates of Azzah? Iudg. 16.3. Now, is it terrible to liue in sinne with so small re­morse of minde and conscience as they doe, whose eares God hath not opened by his discipline? Then it must needs be a terrible thing for men, consisting of flesh, to feele no crosses.

But must iudgement begin at Gods house?Vse. 3 Then for the correction of God, beginning at the righteous, what doe they but testifie for them that they are of that house that God specially loueth? Amos. 3.2. The branch that beareth fruit he purgeth, to wit, with his corrections, that it may bring forth more fruit, Ioh. 15.2. That is, the Lord of his owne vineyard comes with crosses, as with a pruning knife in his hand to pare vs, and to dresse vs (that be branches,) that be­ing yet but weakely fruitfull, we may be made fit to bring forth fruit plentifully in duties of pietie to God, and of loue to men. And for these outward things of ease, credit, and a wealthy life, what are they but medicines for the disease of sinne? Therefore he that dieteth his children will giue them these things, rather as medicines to heale them, then as meates to fill them. For no good Phisicion will prescribe that vse of medicines that he doth of ordinary meate. Hee [Page 40]that comes to a mans house, as a stranger for a night, is better vsed for the time, then he is that shall be heire. For often­times the one sits downe at table, and the other waites: yet who is greater, the stranger? or he that shall be heire of all? So for these strangers that haue some fewe nights lod­ging in Gods Church, howsoeuer here they may be more made of for outward things, and for some short time, then the children of the house, or then the eldest sonne; yet the father hath no such care of them, nor meaning to them as he hath to his owne, to whom he will leaue the inheritance: and they shall depart as strangers, when these shall abide in the house with him for euer. And as Abraham gaue cer­taine gifts to the sonnes of his concubines, & sent them away from Isaac, Gen. 25.6: so to these, not children by adoption but sonnes by creation onely, the Lord will giue these small things for their childs part, and at their death, send them away from the true Isaac, Iesus Christ, neuer to haue any part in his saluation: neuer to dwell any longer with him, to whom the Father saith: Sonne, all that I haue is thine, Luk. 15.31. We see it here in this rich man and Lazarus: For though Lazarus waited for a while, not at the table, but gate of this churlish rich man, who sate at table in his great hall, and had great abundance of these earthly things; yet when Lazarus receiued the inheritance prepared for him, he was sent away as it were to his owne place; and as a stranger to God and Gods family, departed from him, and it for euer. For the first newes we heare of him after his death, is, that he was in hell in torments: that was his place, and thither he went. Hitherto of the first proper effect, the second followeth.

Verse. 21

And desired to be fed with the crummes, &c.

A second proper effect concerning Lazarus; who (greatly) pinched with the crosse of ponertie, and hauing [Page 41]deadly sores vpon him, and a grieuous hunger, yet breakes not out by impatience, as our beggers would; but hum­bly craueth some reliefe from the very crummes of the rich mans table. He craued not any varietie for a sicke and weake stomacke, nor would chuse his almes, as some that come to our doores now, who haue more neede of the Magistrates discipline then of that they aske: but begged onely some of the cast bread, and (questionlesse) would haue bin thankfull for it.

By whose example our poore are taught to be conten­ted with their almes, whether of crummes, as Lazarus; or of gleaning, as Ruth. Ruth. 2.2.3.

The reasons. Men should submit to that estate that God hath laide vpon them; and being poore,Doctr. 1. not disdaine to stoupe vnder the low gate of a poore life: the best way to make men mercifull, is to make our selues by humilitie, capable of their mercies.

Secondly, if seruants must be contented with their wa­ges, (perhaps lesse then they deserue): much more beggers with the almes that is freely giuen.

Thirdly, the contrary were to walke stubbernly against God, and therefore to prouoke him to walke stubbernly a­gainst them. For their pouerty is his chastisement: and therefore, despising what God shall send by it, they con­temne the rod, and him that sent it.

A reproofe of our vnthankfull poore,Vse who scorne the almes that is not of their owne chusing, and murmure a­gainst an almes of bread; where this godly poore man desi­red but an almes of crummes. The poore should speake with prayers: Prou. 18.23, That is, submissely, as they that in­treate: but now they speake as the rich; not humbly with prayer, nor dutifully with thankes, but with proud and inso­lent replyings. For they answer rowghly, and not with a gentle tongue, when they haue not what they would. These are not cast downe before the Lord: for then they would in better behauiour, cast downe themselues before men. Nay, but such set themselues rather to wrestle with [Page 42]God, who will therefore bring seuen plagues more, and seuen times greater vpon them, till they be either humbled, or destroyed, Leuit. 26.21.24. If their pouerty cannot humble them, nor their misery make them stoupe; (where yet Pharao, and Haman, and Benhadad in their afflictions be­came humble and stouped vnto those who they knew, could helpe them); the Lord hath other meanes to make them perceiue who he is, either by plagues on earth, or by that plague of plagues, their iust damnation in hell.

Lazarus here desireth but to be fed with crummes, yet it doth not appeare by the text that any man gaue them to him; rather it is euident by that which followeth, that no man did. And so the maister of the house, being cruell to the poore; the seruants (for like Maister, like seruants) would giue him nothing.

Which teacheth,Doctr. 2. that as the Maister is, such (commonly) are the seruants. If the ruler hearken to lyes, that is, admit them into his eares and receiue them into his heart, all his seruants will be wicked: Prou. 29.12: That is, as ready to tell them, as they to heare them. And whither should filthy channells runne, but into sinkes fit for them? When Caia­phas was against Christ, his whole houshold, men and maides, were against him, Math. 26.69.71.73. Ahab, a wicked King, had as wicked Courtiers, who did so gene­rally humour him in the hatred of Gods Prophets, that Eliiah thought there was neuer a true worshipper left in Is­rael, 1. King. 19.10. If Herod be moued, all Ierusalem is mo­ued with him, Math. 2.3. And Ieroboam, an idolator, made all Israel idolators, 2. King. 3.3. So Queene Marie a Papist, made the land Papists.

The reasons. They that serue, are led much by those whom they serue; and many seeke the face of the ruler, Prou: 29 26. That is, as men are men, and compassed with flesh, they desire and study, in corruption, to gratifie those in e­uill that for euill can reward them.

Secondly, inferiors are euill by nature; and being so by example too how can they be good?

Thirdly, if they be not inclined as their Maisters, they cannot hope to haue their countenance: and the greatest number will rather lose Gods fauour, then theirs.

An admonition to Maisters to be good themselues,Vse. 1 if they would not haue their people naught, like themselues. For as the Iudge is, so are his officers, good or euill, Syrach. 10.2. Therefore Christ, when he would see good fruits of a fami­lie, beginnes at the tree of them in the Maister, Math. 12.33. Abraham, giuen to hospitalitie, his wife was so too, and so was Lot, brought vp in his house, Gen. 18.6 7.8. & 19.2. Where the Maister is godly as Ioseph, the seruants will be godly, as Iosephs chiefe seruant, Gen. 43.23, or s [...]eme so: but wicked Maisters, as Absalom, haue wicked seruants, like those of Absalom, 2. Sam. 13.28. So where the Maister is a Papist, the seruants must be Papists, or fauour Papistrie. And where he is neuter, or luke-warme, they must be indifferent. As the boby bends, so must the shadowe: children and ser­uants in a house, are commonly shadowes to the minde of their Parents, and other ouerseers. These are the party co­loured roddes they looke at, and their examples the colour they conceiue by, Gen. 30.39. Thou swearest before thy lit­tle ones; and they heare thee well inough: for euen these little pitchers haue eares: and must not they sweare as fast, when thy example teacheth them? Thou dost not reue­rence Gods word, or Ministers: and will thy seruants and children doe better? Thou hast tenants, and they see thee no way truely to countenance good things, nor to be an­gry at euill: and will they hate the euill, and chuse good: or doe not they marke what countenance thou giuest to the Preacher, and what words against him? And so as thou pipest they dance. in what way thou leadest of zeale or coldnes in religion they follow; naturally in coldnes, hypo­critically in zeale.Vse. 2 A terrour to all Superiours in bad ex­ample. For when their inferiours doe badly, or otherwaies then they should, they are the winds that moue them. Iero­boam, that made Israel to sinne is Maister, and Prince there: and they shall answere as sinners for themselues: and as [Page 44]examples of sinne, for others. Nor let them say they goe to hell for nothing, when in two regards they goe thither: one for being euill, another for making others euill. So much for the proper effects that concerne this poore man, that which (out of him) concerneth others, followeth.

Yea and the dogges came and licked his sores.

Yet the dogges (whose nature is to barke at strangers and not to licke their sores, but to make them sore shewed more pitty in their kind, then either this Maister, or his men. For these gaue him their tongues, they would not giue him their crummes: these supled his sores, they no way slaked his sore hunger. These bestowed what they had, they would bestowe nothing. These were pittifull to man; they were cruell to poore man, and inhumane to Lazarus, a godly man. Which could not but proceed from the Lord, and be his owne deede, both to testifie against, and to conuince the vnmercifull, and more then beastly incompassionatenes of such cruell wretches. For here the kind nature of the dogges shamed the hard hearts of men: and God opened their mouthes, as he did of Baelaams asse, Num. 22.28.19, to reproue their m [...]ister. Or, God taught these dogges kind­nes, to teach their maister mercy.

And here we are taught that God,Doctr. for good purpose, doth oftentimes make vnreasonable creatures his witnesses a­gainst reasonable men So fire and Lions, the fierce fire, and the hungry Lions shewed mercy, when the King and Princes of Babel and Persia would shewe none to Daniel, and Daniels fellowes, Pan. 3.27 & 6 22. Thus also, when Israel would not know God by his Prophets, he taught them by the Oxe and Asse to know him, Esay 1.3. So proui­dence is taught by the Comes, Prou. 30.26: order by the Grashopper v. 27: diligence by the Spider, v. 78: and timely repentance by the Turtle Swallow, and Crane, that know and obserue their time, Ier. 8.7. In the booke of Micah; when Israel would not heare, God turnes him to the Moun­tains [Page 45]and hills, bidding them to heare, Mich. 6.1.2. And Salo­mon makes the Ant, the sluggards teacher and the Ant-heape, his schoole to learne in, Prou. 6.6. Thus reasonable men are schooled by vnreasonable creatures.

The reasons. By this meanes, God doth shewe them what they should doe; and shame them, not hauing done as they should. Now shame often times moues vs, when the words of the wise can doe nothing with vs.

Secondly, proud persons must be humbled, before they will learne, Esa. 66.2. But what better way to humble them, then to conuince and shame them by such simple Teachers as the Oxe and Asse, and other, both vnreasonable and sens­les creatures are? For may they not then say; What fooles are we that must haue such to teach vs?

Thirdly, man must haue one or other to teach him knowledge, or to condemne him, if he will not learne: and God hath not left himselfe without witnesse, Act. 14 17. Where therefore, his Ministers cannot teach man by his word, the other creatures by their order must, that there be no excuse. And now what can he say, when the creatures without rea­son obserue their makers law; and he that hath reason, and the teaching which they want, will not?

An admonition to reasonable man, not to despise,Vse. [...]. nor yet to neglect the schoolings that God giues him by his o­ther creatures. Not to be vnmercifull, when some dogges haue bin mercifull. Also, when beasts tender their owne kind, not to forsake his. And when God putteth the song of his praise into the mouth of all creatures, euen of the hilles and mountains, of the fowles of the aire, of the trees of the forrest and of the dragons and wormes that creepe vpon the earth, Psal. 148, not to suffer his praise to goe out of his mouth. For shall i [...] not be shame and sinne to him to be dumbe, when these are so hie, and loude? And what wit­nesse can they giue but of his iust condemnation▪ if where they declare his glory he bring by his wickednesse, by his crueltie, by his prophane life and most v [...]ine behauiour, no­thing but shame, [...]eproch, and contempt to his name? God [Page 46](as was said) neuer left himselfe without witnesse, no not in the blind world of the heathen; how much lesse can hee want witnesse now in the new world of grace, where the light is tenne times clearer then that of the Sunne? and where besides the darke starres of the firmament, we haue the cleare glorious Sun-light of the Gospell to walke by? If then, being taught (as we are) in the common and pri­uate schoole, that is, both by creatures, and by the word, we profit not more to obedience, or a better life; not onely the word (that we haue so long heard) will iudge vs, but euen the creatures, that doe so well in their kind, will with open mouthes witnesse against vs. And let me tell you, that if theEsay 1.3. Oxe knowe his owner, and the Asse his Maisters crib; and we that haue reason to make vs men, and the Gos­pel to make vs Christians, neither will know, nor regard to know our owners feare, or Maisters glory; it cannot be but these simple drudges, the Oxe and Asse, will in their o­bedience, giue in a fearefull euidence against vs, one day. Also, we that haue our beasts obedient to vs in the sixe daies, and yet (as rebellious children worse then beasts) are diso­bedient to the Lord on the seuenth, what can we say? For when we spake to them they heard vs, when we whipped them they obeyed vs, in all our businesse they attended on vs: and yet we listen not to God calling vs by his word; we neither profit by his chastisements, nor attend on his commandements. How can we answer this? how can we denie so plaine a matter as this? And when these shall speake against vs with the voice of their testimonie, what will we alledge for our selues? And what will be our defence? A fearefull thing therefore, not to heare such Schoole-maisters as these, nor to be better by precepts of this nature, in such Monitors, as these are.

But doth God make vnreasonable creatures his witnesses against reasonable men?Vse. 2 Thē though men should hold their peace, the stones would crie, Luk. 19.40. That is, if it could be supposed that man, in bearing witnesse, would be parti­all to mankind; yet God could haue witnesses, many and [Page 47]sufficient against him, in his other creatures without num­ber. Or if man should not accuse man, nor a mans cōscience himselfe; yet neither should God be without witnesse, nor man without accusers, or (for failing) innumerable accusers of another element and creation. O then, how carefull should we be now by keeping good conscience in all things, Hebr. 13.18, to stop those mouthes that otherwaies we shalbe sure, by walking against God and not in his feare, to open wi [...]e against vs in the day of vengeance, and yeere of recompence from the Lord? Esa. 34.8. When the Israe­lits contended with God, and murmured against him in the desert, they might haue considered how he but spake to the Sea, and the great Sea did presently heare him; though it were to diuide it self, as it were to receiue some deep wound orgash against course, to giue them way. Ex. 14.21. So when they rebelled for water; they might haue learned obedience of the hard rocke; for when Moses smote it, Num. 20, 8.11. he should but haue spoken to it, it was not rebellious, but presently gaue them water in abundance. These were Gods witnesses, and shall be mens Iudges; because by the light in them they could see no better to obey, hauing so cleare a torch of ex­ample to leade them. And so we if we profit not to good or­der by the seemely order of the vnreasonable and insensible creatures that serue God in their kind; shall haue witnesses inough against vs out of that simple hoast or muster. The winds and Sea obeyed Christ: for he rebuked the winds, and said to the Sea, be still, and presently they obeyed: the winds ceased, and the Sea was calme, Mar. 4.39. Now if angry persons heare this, to whom it is said; Be angry, and sinne not, Eph. 4.26, and yet will not be calmed by the word, putting away wrath; the winds and Sea shall con­demne them. The beast that will drinke no more then it needes, may depose against those that sit at the wine and strong drinke all day long: The Ant that prepareth her meate in Summer, that is, while it may be had; condemneth those sluggards and idle, destitute of vnderstanding, who neither Summer nor Winter, care for any thing, Pro. 30, 25. [Page 48]The locusts that goe forth by bands, that is, strongly tege­ther, and not weakely by few in a companie, are witnes­ses against the diuisions of Christendome, that (separately) make themselues a prey, when (iointly) they might make a beautifull army, v. 27 And the Spider that laboureth so busily about her web, and takes hold of her thread with such in­dustry and constancie, is a shame to the slothfull in their vo­cation, who take no holde of Time for any good purpose vnder the Sun. v. 28. Loe here, who may be our teachers, or will be our accusers, though man should say nothing. Let vs therefore, among so many witnesses, walke circumspect­ly, not as fooles but as wise: so I come to that which is common both to this rich man, and Lazarus.

Verse. 22

And it was so, that the Begger died, &c.

That which was common to the rich man and Lazarus, is, that they both died. For in the beginning of the verse it is said, the begger died: and in the end of it, that the rich man died also. Now to die, properly, is to haue the soule se­uered from the body: and so all must haue, poore and rich that die. This poore man was bitten to death of the dog of hunger: and the other rich man, though he felt no hun­ger, yet could not auoide the dart of death; for both the poore and rich died.

Where we learne that the state or condition of the poore and rich is one concerning death,Doctr. 1. and that the Law of it is vniuersall. One dies as well as another, the wise man as the foole: Eccles. 2.16: and all flesh is grasse, Esa. 40.6. The flesh of poore men and the flesh of Kings is grasse; and both cut downe by death, the coursest grasse, and the finest flower of grasse. Death is the worme in euery gourd mortall; Ion. 4.7: and Princes die like other men. Psal. 82.7. The point is plaine by the experience of all the ages both of time, and persons past: and therfore the Prophet in the Psal. 89. V. 48, [Page 49]maketh this question, What man is he that liueth, and shal not see death? As much as if hee had sayd, No man living but shall. So Saint Paul, It is appointed, as by a Statute of e­uerlasting Parliament, and appointed to men, that is, to euery man, to one as well as to another, That they shall once dye, Heb. 9.27. And dust shall returne to dust, as it was. Ecclesiastes, 12.7.

Behold we the famous men before vs, that gouerned the people by counsell, and in whose doctrine were wise sen­tences: or consider wee those great ones that wee reade of, who commaunded the sea and drie land, making the beasts of the earth, the fishes of the sea, and the fowles of the ayre to serue for their delight; are they not (all) tur­ned to their dust, and is not all their glory fledde as a sha­dow. Hat not iust and mighty death couered their large bodies ouer with those two very short words, Hic [...]ac [...]t, Here lyes, to witte the body of such and such a Monarch, Potentate and Emperour of the earth? Was not the graue their house? and did they not all make their bedde in the darke?, Iob. 17.13.

Some of their iourneyes in this pilgrimage of life, were shorter, some longer; but was not their graue the com­mon Inne where they lodged at night? and what diffe­rence in death betweene them? [...]ucar, Dialog. Among many dead Ghosts (as it is in the fable) one would needs know which was Philip King of Macedon; Answer was made, Hee that hath the balde heade is Philip: All haue balde heads, saith he: he that hath the slatte nose is Philip, sayth the o­ther: Al haue flat noses, sayth hee; He with the hollow eyes is hee, sayth the other, and that hath the bare ribbes, and ratling bones; but all are such, and haue such, sayth he: Then sayde the other, I perceyue then there is no dif­ference in death betweene the begger and the King. In a cast of Counters, one hath the place of pounds, another of shillings, a third of pence, and euery one as he that casts the account shall thinke good to lay them; but put them all into a bagge, and what difference is there? So what [Page 50]difference betweene those that are worth thousands, and those that are worth nothing, being once put together in the common bagge of the earth? Salomon in all his glory was not so glorious as the Lilly, sayth the second Salomon: Math. 6.29. And what is a Lilly? or what eternity is there in that flower of grasse? It is sayde that euery Lilly hath his worme in his roote: and can wee thinke that the Lilly of flesh is without? Surely the worme of death gnawes vpon vs so soone as we begin to liue in the womb, be we borne poore, or of Princes: and, when we come into the world, innumerable petty deaths are sent vpon vs for transgression. Wormes eate vs aliue: and wee are but worm [...]s meate, being in our house of corruption. That which hath some shew to day, is to morrow rolled vp, and layde aside in the clodde of the earth.

Abraham was the friend of God in his generation, Samp­son was strong, and Iob iust, and none so wise as Salomon: and yet death hath rolled vp all those Worthies, and bu­ried their bones in Golgotha. Since the fall of Adam, there is no entring into Paradise, but by the burning Seraphims: or blazing fittes of death, Gen. 3.24. It was sayde to Adam, and the same may bee sayde to all that come of A­dam, Thou art dust: Gen. 3.19. That is, thou art but mat­ter for the earth, and for death that reigneth ouer all flesh. Finally, as in the parable, the Labourers came into the Vineyard, Math. 20.1.3.5.6. so shall those Labou­rers go out, some at one houre, some at another; some in their infancy, or dazon of day. Some in their third houre, young; some when they are men, in their sixt and ninth houre; and some when they be old men in their eleuenth and last houre. But all must goe out of this vineyarde of life that liue; and the longest day of the longest liuers life is but till night, the night wherein no man can worke, Iohn 9.4. I conclude therefore, that all are mortall, poore and rich.

The Reasons. It is iust that God giue to euery one the wages of his workes: but the wages of sinne is death, Rom. [Page 51]6.23. and therefore iust it is, that hee who sinneth (and all are sinners should dye.

Secondly, sinne [...]nt euer all, and death by it, Rom. 5.12. and therefore all, rich, poore, and all must die.

Thi [...]dly, God say de to Adam, In the day that thou eatest of the tree which I haue forbidden thee to eate or touch, ther shalt dye the death, Gen. 2.17. Now Adam did eate, and what was sayd to him, was spoken to all Man-kinde in him: and therefore not he onely must dye, but all must dye that were in his loynes.

Fourthly, wee are all one mans sonnes, Adams; and haue one mother, our common mother, the earth, Iob. 17.13.14. And whither must Adams sonnes goe, but whi­ther Adams sinne sends them? and to whom is the childe to bee brought, but to his owne mother?

Fiftly,Austen. one calleth life a sicknesse, and hee that hath the sicknesse of life, how can hee chuse but dye?

Sixtly, by death God declares his power, seeing that by it he translates his Elect to life, and that eternall: therefore is death called by Dauid, The way of all the liuing: 1. King. 2: 2. and by H [...]zechiah in his song, The doore of the graue: Esa. 38.10. For as mē enter into their houses by the doore, and goe to their places by the way: so doe they passe to their graues by death, and remoue to their Countrey by the same, as by their common way. One vseth this compa­rison; As the herbe breedes the worme, and the worme (so bredde) eates the herbe that is bredde in: so sin brought in death: and death brought in by sinne, destroyeth sinne to the righteous, the sinne that caused death. If sinne had not beene, death had neuer been: and yet to the Elect, deaths being, only, doth away sinne; not because they die, but because they receyue that grace in death, and not be­fore they dye.

Seuenthly, there is a common subiection to death, that the godly by such subi [...]ction may learne to make the more of Christ, and of their saluation by him, when they shall perceyue that, that which they so much abhorre and, [Page 52]feare (I meane death in kinde) is by his dying made no death to them, but their doore to the kingdom of heauen. Heb. 2.14 15.

Lastly, the law of death takes hold of all; that the god­ly beeing vnder the arrest of it as well as others, though not vnder the tyranny of it as the wicked, might enter in­to life by that gate, by which Christ their head passed to his glory; the gate of putting off this mortal and earthlie house, in death.

But doe the rich dye as well as the poore,Vse. 1 the King as the begger? Then let the great ones learne, not to despise meaner persons at their feet, nor insolently to aduance themselues aboue them: for they haue one Mother, and goe to one house. Corruption is Father to both, both haue one Sister, the Worme, and both shall lye downe toge­ther in the dust, Iob 17.13, 14, 16. Heere the poore man dyed: and dyed not the rich man as well as hee? Doth not this sword deuoure one as well as another? 2. Sam. 11.24. Is not the mouth of it the graue that receyueth rich and poore? and what is one heape of dust better then an other in the darke chambers of the dead? Difference of persons serues but for this life; after it, all goe to one place: and great men play better parts on the high stage of this world then meaner doe; but when the play is done, on goes their owne apparrell againe, the common weare of mortality, & all are clad alike with corruption & wormes. Who considering this as hee should, doth not see and confesse, that there is neyther profit nor worth in these vain things? And who seeing and confessing so much, will be so proud of that which is nothing? M. Carew on this text. What, saith one, doe great possessions and this greatnesse, to bee rich in grounds auayle men, when a peece of ground of fiue foote must containe them? What better for their stately houses, when bound hand and foote, they must bee put in the straite house of a simple coffin? What better for their rich apparrell, when a sheete of no great shew must shrowde them? And what doeth their daintie fare, and [Page 53]sweete meate profite them with the sowre sauce of repen­tance? Wealth they may haue, but no wealth can buye them of death: for here it is sayde, A rich man dyed. All reioycing therefore, and swelling aboue others, by reason of this earthly glory, is very vaine and vnworthy a Chri­stian that is redeemed with a price, for better things in an inheritance that fadeth not.

But further, If the Law of death be vniuersall,Vs [...]. 2. then it is no inheritance to be here; and (here) wee haue no con­tinuing City: that is, wee haue no state of perpetuity in those earthly Cottages: The terme wee haue in them is short and simple, compared with our enduring house in heauen. Our warning out of them beginnes with the first moment of our naturall life: for so soone as wee beginne to liue, we beginne to die: and the place wee haue, hath no foundation; where the place wee shall haue, is sure and eternall. And should not all this moue vs to take pre­sent order for another, and better life? Hee that knowes hee shall remoue out of the Tenement hee hath, within a quarter or halfe a yeare, is very improuident, and weake witted, if within that short bound of time, hee prepare not some other house to come vnto. So for vs that inhabite these houses of clay, seeing our warning is shorter, and our change may bee sooner then halfe a yeare, or quarter (per­haps to morrow, perhaps this present day or houre) how improuident and simple are wee, if wee care not to assure vnto vs another and farre better house, then those we haue here? that wee may say with the Apostle, Wee know that if our earthly house of this Tabernacle bee destroyed, wee haue a building giuen vs of God, an house not made with hands, but eternall in the heauens. 2. Cor. 5.1. But some say with Peter, It is good to be here: Math. 17.4. as if they should say, No where so well as in these corruptible possessi­ons, and therefore they build tabernacles in them; not one for Christ, one for Moses, & one for Elias; but for this child and for that. And so, as there is no rememberance of death in their doing; I say no remembrance of death: [Page 54]for due thoughts of death will so distaste them of earthly things, that they will finde small rellish in them, and be rea­dy to say with Esau; Loe I am a [...]mos [...] dead, and what is this birthright to me? Gen. 25.32. Where contrarily, promising to themselues long life, (and their lease may be out to mor­row,) they lay vp all their treasure in their barnes and full bagges, Luk. 12.19; not caring for their other house till this be taken from them.

A reproofe therefore to those,Vse. 3 who (as if they forgate the common way of all the liuing) make it a strange thing to die; and who liue, as if there were no house of darknes to passe vnto, nor way in death to walke in: but the igno­rance of a way so beaten, & by so many, how can it be excu­sed? And yet if we find any little alteration or change in our stomacke, in our body, or bones, how doe we wonder at it? how passionate be we, and how pettish for it? as if it were some great wonder that any of Adams children should sic­ken & die? How will such be able quietly and with any peace to beare the comming of death, the Lord himselfe, when they are so agast at the approch of these his purueiers, or petti-deaths, whom he sends before to prepare for his comming? How haue such remembred euery day to looke for death? and euery houre to prepare to die? or rather how haue such forgotten to esteeme of euery day as of their last day? and to prepare for euery houre as for their dying houre? But of this I haue spoken largely in my Sermons of life and death, specially the first and second the [...]e.

Thus we haue heard that it is common both to rich and poore to die. Yet, in the order obserued in the text, this poore godly man, he that was in such misery, pained with such hunger died first. It was to hasten him to glory, and from the euils he endured here.

And so we secondly learne,Doctr. 2. that the deaths of the righte­ous are their gaine, or a speedy taking of them from euils present, and to come. So saith Esay, the righteous, that is, they that loue righteousnes, and haue it imputed, are taken a­way, or gathered from the euill to come: Esa. 57.1: That is, [Page 55]both from the euill of sinne, and from the euils that come by sinne: and this taking away is in their bodies for the graue, in their soules for glory. Thus was2. King. 22, 20. Iosuah taken away, a good King, and a good King, young. Euils were neare, therefore was he taken from those euils and plagues at hand. Enoch also, he that is reported of, that he pleased God, Heb. 11.5, was for his great gaine, walking among sinners, taken vp to God. Gen. 5.24. And thus the Lord sheweth himselfe to be a rewarder of them that seeke him, Hebr. 11.6, or that walke with him, as Henoch did. The blessed dead that die in the Lords, as Christians; or for the Lord, as Christian martyrs, are taken or haue rest from their labours, that is, euils pre­sent, saith S. Iohn, Apoc. 14.13. And when the cheekes of the godly are blubbered with weeping for the euils they see, and euill things they suffer of the vnworthy world, God doth not delay, by taking them out of the world & to him­selfe, to wipe all such teares of paine and crying from their eyes. Apoc. 21.4 Esa. 25.8.

The reasons. The Lord remembreth whereof they are made, and knoweth that (as dust) they will quickly be mo­ued with the wind of long troubles: and therefore will not contend for euer with them, that is, ouerlong, l [...]st the spirit should faint before him, Esa. 57.16. Also, if the rod of the vngodly did rest alwaies vpon them, they might put foorth their hand to wi [...]kednesse; Psal. 125.3. So should God lose his good subiects, which he will not doe: and therefore will not suffer them to be tempted aboue that they be able. 1. Cor. 10.13.

Secondly, the world is not worthy of such. Hebr. 11.38. or, the righteous are a blessing that the world cares not for. Now, a blessing vnregarded, or vsed vnworthily, may (worthily) be taken away. Where therefore the wicked set so little by the righteous, God doth hasten to take them a­way for their plague, and the euerlasting good of his children.

Thirdly; in this life the godly haue nothing but losse vpon losse: as the losse of their good labours, the losse of [Page 56]their good name, and the losse of their time here. Besides, for their afflictions, their death onely makes an end of them; life and misery being as two twins, that are borne together, and must die together. And is it not then the great aduan­tage of the righteous, and their great preferment by death, that by it they are drawne out of so many and fatall euils, in­to the blessed rest and glory of God, in the which they shall continue euer? So long as they abide here in their tents of warre, they must not put off their harnesse at any time: day and night they must lie in the field, expecting a battell, wherein is no time of truce. For if Satan be ouercome at one time, at another hee will set vpon them: onely death ends the battell, not to his auaile, but to theirs. They that die in those battells are ouercome; in those other the Saints neuer ouercome till they die: and is not their death then, their vndoubted aduantage and gaine that so die?

But doth God take away the righteous speedily and soo­nest, because the world is not worthy of them,Vse. 1 as the wicked are vnworthy to liue in the world? Then, they that suruiue the righteous, haue iust cause to feare that for their vnwor­thinesse such are taken from them; and because they no better regarded them, nor Gods loue by them. Some re­ioice when a good man dies; not because he is taken from labour to rest, from death to life; but because they hated him for his goodnes, and desired rather his roome then his com­pany here: but let such know that▪ Lot being departed out of Sodome, fire and brimstone will come quickly after, Gen. 19.17.23.24. For the wheate being gathered into the barne, what shall be done with the tares? shall they not (being bound vp for the fire) be set on a burning? Math. 13.30. When the godly Lazarus is dead, not long after dieth the vngodly Dines: but Lazarus is in Abrahams bosome, and the rich man in hell in torments. Assoone as Noah is in the Arke, the world that mocked him, is in their graue of wa­ters, and most of them in their center of fire. Therefore, when the righteous perish, the wicked (behind them) haue great cause to howle and weepe, but no cause to laugh or [Page 57]be merry, except this may make them glad; that making no good vse of their happy ends, their owne vnhappy end is not farre off, that waiteth for them to damnation. Now, consider this yee that forget God, lest he teare you in peeces, and there be none to deliuer you. Psal. 50.22. Let Lazarus, let the godly be regarded while they liue with you, lest (for your contempt of such) God take them to blisse, and send you to hel. Or if God remoue some yong, and in their tender bud, sparing you in your threescore, and stubberne roote; know, that it is done of the Lord, either to bring you to repen­tance: or if you will not repent, to harden you further to destruction.

Further, is the death of the righteous, the righteous mans gaine; Then let not the godly man feare to die,Vse. whose pre­ferment is such by death, that Christ in life and death is his aduantage. Philip. 1.21. That which is bitter to worldly men is pleasure to him: that which is wofull to them, is ioy to him: that which bringeth them into misery, draweth him out: and what takes him out of the prison of life, casts them into the prison of hell. No maruell then if the wicked be loth to die: but great maruell that the godly should feare to die. For, for the wicked, (specially the rich, such as this rich man); here they are well, and cannot hope that their remoue shall be to better, or so good: and therefore their change to a place they know not whither, and to a life, they know not what, must needes much trouble them: and no maruell, if they who know no better life, leaue this against their willes.

But for the righteous, that are called in hope and to better things in Christ; it were strange seeing, their dimittis is in peace with Simeon, that with Simeon they should not desire the day of libertie, 2. Tim. 4.8, which is the day of their death: and that they might be loosed, to wit from their fetters here, to be with Christ. Philip. 1.23.

This life to them is but a very vale of teares, and they be in the world as Iacob in Labans house.Gen. 30.31. How then can they so much loue this vale, and Labans house, of so many [Page 58]and continuall vexations, as not to desire with the change of the place, a change in these matters, miseries and condi­tions of mortall life? Who would not depart with Iacob, and desire to depart with Simeon, in such a case? Luk. 2.29. Gen. 31.17.18. Death in it selfe is full of bitternes, and by nature to the nature of man, The very king of feare, Iob. 18.14. and who looking vpon death with the visour vpon his face, and armed with sinne, will not giue backe at his approach, and say, O stay me a little? Psal. 39.13. But when death shall bee considerd with the aduantage, that is, as it is to the righteous, and as Christ hath taken from it the visour of feare to them, and to all that loue his comming: the day of death, as the day of the Iewes deliuerance from Haman, cannot but be a feast day, and a good day. Est. 8.17. a day of deliuerance from the Haman of hell, from the power of sinne, and powers of darknesse.

The Apostle considering this, desired to bee gone: shall wee thinke in a desperate moode, as they that care not which end goes forward? No, but he did it vpon good and iust grounds, knowing the happinesse that wayted for him, and which waiteth for all that haue his thirst to bee with Christ.

The feare of death is naturall: so children feare to goe in the darke: but the feare of it, for it selfe, is weake: For many times death passeth with lesse paine then the torture of a limme. But the death to be feared, is the death that hath sinne in it: and the reason of the feare, because sinne that brought it, is fearefull.

Now the godly mans death is no such death, hauing the teeth of sinne pulled out of it, that it cannot bite; his death is but his sleepe in his bed, and rest from his labours: and therefore to him to dye, is no more then to goe to his rest at night; or hauing escaped the sea, to come to the ha­uen where he would bee, Psal. 107.30. And who would feare so to doe? But their best preferment is, where (here) they are absent from Christ, there they shall euer be with him: where (here) they please God weakely, and offend [Page 59]him daily; there they shall both please him, and enioy pleasures with him for euer: and where (here) they are strangers, there they shall be at home in their owne Coun­trey and proper ayre, with the whole blessed Trinitie, the Father, Sonne, and holy Ghost.

So much for that which is common to the rich man & Lazarus, and for their different estates on earth: their dif­ferent estates after they left the earth follow.

And was carried by the Angels into Abrahams bosome.

The difference that was betweene the rich man and Lazarus after their death, was greater then (before) in their life here: for Lazarus went to heauen; It is sayde that the Angels carried him, as in their hands thither. The other went to hell; It is sayde, hee was in torments in hell. Here hee that could not bee brought by the mea­nest in the rich mans house into the wicked rich mans kit­chen, is carried by the angels (which for that purpose at­tend the godly at their death) into the bosome of Abraham, that is, into the glorious heauen of Gods presence, where Abraham is, and whither all Abrahams children come. Hee that could haue but the dogges here to beare him compa­ny, hath now the welcom company of the Angels to attēd him. Hee whom no man regarded, the Angels now honour: And he now feedeth on the tree of life, that could not haue the offals of the Rich mans table to feede on. Is not this a great change? But such honour had he; and such honour haue all Gods Saints.

Further, in these words, and in Lazarus, two things may bee considered; as, by whom he was carried, and whi­ther. He was carried by the Angels (sayth the Text) that is, by those spirituall, heauenly, and most excellent substan­ces, that minister before the glory of God continually: for these glorious spirits, Gods good Angels, and those flames of fire his Ministers doe, by diuine commandement, mi­nister to the heyres of saluation; diuersly whiles they liue, [Page 60]and sweetely at their death, Heb. 1.14.

The place whither Lazarus was carried, is Heauen; cal­led by a kind of Periphrasis, or kind of speech, Abrahams bosome, or the bay of rest from all stormes below.

And so wee see that the glory of the godly begin­neth in their death, as the glory of the wicked endes in theirs.

But to returne to the Angels; and in briefe, to tell you what they are, as the word telles mee; they are sub­stances created without bodies: the time when, was within the 6. dayes, the place where, was in heauen. Of these an innumerable company fell quickly, and together, (for as they were made within the 6. dayes, so within that time they fell; and these we call (now) Diuels; that is, Angels by their creation, but diuels by their fal, for which they are Chained vp in vtter darknes, Iude. 6. The other An­gels, which (also) are innumerable, stood, and euer shall stand by grace in the puritie and righteousnesse, wherein their Makers hand (at first) set them

And these are the Angels that this Scripture speaketh of, which are called Angels for their seruice and ministe­ry: for in their substance they are spirites, and in their of­fice Angels, Psal. 103.20. & 104.4. And Angels be­cause they minister to the righteous in their life; and at the end of their life, as here to Lazarus.

Where wee learne; that the good Angels are, by Gods ordinance,Doctr. euer about the righteous; that is, about their paths in their life, and at their beds in their death, to doe seruice to them.

Thus three Angels came to Abraham, Gen▪ 18.3. And the same three to deliuer L [...]t, Gen. 19.16. An hoast of them mette Iacob in his way, Gen. 32.1.2. to leade him▪ and a like field of them was about Elisha in his di­stresse to helpe him, 2. King. 6.17. When Christ was borne, a great multitude of Angels, like Armies of men, were heard to prayse God, and to sing to men, Luke. 2.13. Diuers Angels appeared to Esay. Esa. 6.2. One sayth 6. [Page 61]but sixety times sixe Pitch about the righteous, Psal. 34.7. In the olde Testament, there is a cloud of such proofes, and good store of them in the new. So true it is, and so cer­taine, that the Angels haue a charge from God to keepe the righteous in all their wayes, Psal. 91.11. That is, in all their righteous wayes to attend them. The little ones haue their Angels, Math. 18.10. Both little ones in Chri­stianitie, and little ones in yeares: the Angels are theyr Rockers.

The reasons. Christians are a royall Priesthood, that is, spiritually, Priests and Princes, And Princes must haue their guard, 1. Pet. 2.9. Worldly Princes haue their guard at Court; and Christians that are Princes, haue Angells for their guard in the Court of the Church, where they serue day and night.

Secondly, innumerable euill Angels are about vs, and dangers hang ouer vs: and therefore if the good Angels did not watch ouer vs, and tarry with vs to in­counter the bad; If their shield were not before vs to co­uer vs, and their persons at our backe to saue vs, when dan­gers are neere; how is it possible in so great malice of the enemie, and multitude of daungers, for Gods little ones to be in safety? I say not but God can saue without them; but I speake of His ordinary way.

And in this sense; If the good Angels did not keepe vs, how soone would the euill that beare vs such hatred, teare vs in peeces, and deuoure vs? How could our little Children euer liue to be men in so many casualties of a childes life, if these blessed Spirites did not day & night keepe them, and euery part in them, and euery bone in them? Psal. 34.20.

Thirdly, the righteous are members of that head, which the Angels worship, Heb. 1, 6. and honouring the head, how can they but serue the body? or doing the one by Gods commandement, how can they but doe the o­ther by it? Psal. 91, 11.

This is a point of singular both priuiledge and comfort [Page 62]to the righteous:Vse. 1 Of priuiledge; seeing God vouchsafeth such honour to poore dust and ashes, as to make his noble Courtiers, the Angels, their attendants. Was it not great ho­nour for Mardocai, a despised Iewe, to haue so great a Peere of the Empire as Haman was, to hold his stirrop? to be set vpon the best of the Kings horses by him, and to ride tri­umphantly through the Citie, while he lackyed by? Hest. 6.10.11. Then, how great honour for such poore wretches as we are, to haue such glorious Peeres as the Angels are; not one but so many, nor for some one houre, but so continual­ly and still, to waite vpon vs? The poorest Christian (if a true Christian) hath greater roial [...]ie by these heauenly gar­dians and their high wall about him, then Salomon in the middes of his two hundred Targets, and three hundred shields of beaten gold. Salomon had great glory by these; but the mem­bers of the true Salomon, haue farre greater by the Angels a­bout them in all their wayes.

And as their priuiledge is great hereby; so who can tell what a comfort it is for Christians in distresse to haue such about them, not only while they can scarce breathe vnder the hote pursuits of their deadly enimies, but are ready to breathe out their last gaspe on their death-b [...]ds? for in dan­ger will they not say; We feare not though tenne thousands should beset vs? Psal. 3.6. And at their death; They that be with vs are more then they that be with them? 2. King. 6.16. Our soules are in a sure hand, being kept by the Angels; and they (as carefull Nurses) will order all our wayes. In­deede the good Angels doe not appeare ordinarily: No more doe the euill, and yet we doubt not but hurt is done by the one: and why should we doubt that our helpe is by the other? Let vs put on those eyes wherewith Elisha sawe the mountaine full of horses and charets of fire about him, 2. King. 6.17: and in all dangers we will see as much, and in the middes of death, our sure redemption. For we shall see the Angels that caried Lazarus to heauen, ready to carry vs thither: and if they carry vs thither, who shall pull vs thence?

A terrour to the wicked that oppose vnto Gods little ones. For neither they,Vse 2 nor all the wicked Angels with them can preu [...]ile against any whom the Lo [...]d will keepe by his Angels, but perish rather in the opposition. So, what could Senacherib doe with his great host of men, aided (it is like) by as many diuels as men against Hezekiah, Gods King? And spanish Senacherib, in the yere, 1588, what could he doe with his great host of shippes, assisted with what the diuell and all the diuels Angels could doe against Eliza­beth of England, Gods Queene? Was not Senacherib of As [...]ur ouerthrowne by an Angel? 2. King. 19.35. And did the Senacherib of Sp [...]i [...]e speede better? When the three ser­uants of God were cast into the fornace, seu [...]n times heated, the Angels that kept the flame from them, turned it vpon those that tooke vp Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed [...]ego. Dan. 3.22. And God shut the mouthes of the Lions by his Angel, while his owne seruant was in the den, but opened them when he was brought forth, and his accusers cast in; his and the Lions had the mastery, and brake all their bones be­fore they could come at the bottome of the den, Dan. 6.22.24. Thus we see the defence of the righteous, and the danger of their enimies: and what can the diuell and his instruments doe more then they haue done against them? Is not satan with his Angels sent away confounded from their death­beds, when God by his Angels receiues their soules, as the soule of Lazarus here? or did God so gard Lazarus then; and doth he not so, and as strongly gard and encompasse the soules of the godly now?

An instruction to Christians not to carry themselues vn­reuerently at any time in their words or wayes, because of the Angels. So the Apostle S. Paul would not haue women vncouered in the assembly, because of them. 1. Cor. 11.10. If a noble man were in place, would we vnciuilly carry our selues: and shall we forget our holy calling in the worthy presence of the Angels: shall we make their waiting vpon vs tedious vnto them, by behauing our selues otherwaies in [Page 64]their sight, then beseemeth their high persons, and the ho­norable birth of a Christian. And now, that we are (all of vs) before God in the Ministery and at prayer; let vs speci­ally take heede how we demeane our selues; lest the An­gels, that grace our assemblies with their presence, when they returne to heauen, complaine of our vnchristian inci­uilitie in this holy place. As if they should say to God: we were in such an assembly, professing thy name and worship, but whiles thou wast speaking to them by thy word and Minister, some were talking, some girding at the Preacher, some laughing and fleering, some making gaudes and mouthes, some flat along, not in prayer, but in a slouenly rudenesse, perhaps in their drousie drunkennesse; and some were fast asleepe.

Is this a good report? and should we not dread to be thus spoken of to God? Further, let them consider this, who when they are priuate, care not what they say or doe; and what steames they send vp of a corrupt and vnsauory dunghill within, in all their talke to their priuate acquain­tance, without any grace to the hearers. Such forget that the Angels are neare, who want not eares, as they be full of eyes; that is, are not slowe to heare, as they be quicke to see: and how can they then be hidden? This is to grieue the Angels, and to make the God of Angels to grieue them. So farre for the persons that caried the soule of Lazarus, the place followeth, to which they caried it.

Into Abrahams bosome.

The place of comfort to which the Angels brought the soule of Lazarus, is here called Abrahams bosome by a trope or figure: because, as the fathers bosome is the place of the childes rest: so heauen is that bosome of eternall rest, into which Abraham, the father-beleeuer, with all the chil­dren of promise which are beleeuers, are receiued, in their soules, till the day of the resurrection. And it is no other but the bay or hauen of repose from all stormes mortall; [Page 65]whereinto Abraham hath put long since, and all shall, who walke in the steppes of his faith.

Indeede, some of the fathers haue spoken doubtfully of it; and the Papists tell vs that it is the Limbus or brimme of hell, where all our fathers were till Christ descended to bring them out: But can that which is a place of ioyfull and happy rest, be the brimme of hell? can that which is, and is called a glorious kingdome be hell? Math. 8.11. Can it be a prison or place of custody, that is called so often in the Scriptures, the glorious liberty of the sonnes of God? Can that be so neare vnto, and border vpon the place of tor­ments into hell; which by Abrahams speech of it in the 26. verse following, is so farre remoued, that there is a great gulfe, or gaping pit betweene? and can Abrahams bosome, which is simply good, be taken for that, which (as a father saith) is neuer taken for good? Chrys [...]stome saith, It is the poore mans paradise: In hono [...] de Diuite. Is paradise hell? and Austen in the place before, denies it to be hell or any part of hell: and how then can it be the skirt of hell? And Tertul­lian in his fourth booke against Marcion, saith; that hell is one thing, and Abrahams bosome another. Then Abrahams bosome cannot be hell, nor the canopie of hell. What shall I further say? this already spoken is sufficient to cleare this Scripture, from sending the soule of Lazarus to hell, or to any part of hell: and therfore Abrahams bosome in this text is no other then heauen, the seate of God, and of the blessed Saints in light; an harbour of rest from the waues and Sea of this troublesome world: & vnto it is the soule of Lazarus brought presently after his death: from whence learne, that after this life of paine and labour, there is nothing but ioy and peace to the righteous, so saith Esay: He, that is, the righteous person, of whom he spake in the former verse, shall enter into peace, that is, presently after his death, enter, or make his entry vpon it, Esa. 57.2. God reckened with those in their death, who had receiued their Lords money. The account came not till they died: and therefore saith the text, When the Maister of those seruants returned, (who is [Page 66]said to returne, when dust returneth to the earth as it was, and the spirit to God that gaue it, Eccles. 7,) he said to the good ser­uant and faithfull; Enter into thy Maisters ioy, Math. 25.21.23. That is, into ioyes vnspeakeable and glorious, 1. Pet. 1.8, or, such as the Maister hath prepared for all his faithfull seruants, after they haue serued their course and time here. He saith not, enter first into the fire of paine, and when that hath well purged thee, I will take thee to ioy: But without any more adoe, receiue that ioy, whereof as the fountaine had no beginning, so the riuers that come from it, shall haue no end. Receiue thy Maisters ioy in that, and in these. So that there is no pause or stay made by the Lord at the deaths of the godly, but presently they passe from death to life; not painfull, but truly ioyous and full of pleasures for euer. The voice from heauen said the same, and the Spirit sealed to it; for so saith the Spirit, that is speaketh so, and no otherwaies then the voice spake: which is; Blessed are the dead in the Lord, that is, the godly dead: and the reason is, they, to wit immediately after such a death, rest from their labours; Apoc. 14.13: not in the purgatory of Papists where is no rest, but in the paradise of God where is true ioy, and the plentifull redemption of the Saints. The Apostle Paul saith, Those that sleepe in Iesus, God will bring with him, 1. Thes. 4.14. His mea­ning can be no other, but that assoone as they sleepe in Christ, or die in him; God hath them presently in his hand and keeping: who will keepe them till the time come that he hath appointed to deliuer them vp, & to testifie whō he hath receiued. Thus it is plaine that the godly enter vpon happines presently, & so soone as they goe henceby death.

The reasons. The voice from heauen saith so, and so saith the Spirit, Apoc. 14.13. Two witnesses without all exception: which being so doth not the law say, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses euery word shall be established? Mat. 18.16. Ioh. 8.17. But these two from heauen are more, and more sure then a thousand on earth: and therefore what they say is sure, and must stand.

Secondly, how shall the day of death be better to the [Page 67]righteous, then the day in which they are borne (as the Scripture speaketh); if they who goe hence, come not out of paines but exchange them? nor end their misery, but con­tinue it? nor be in happines, but be troubled still? Ec­cles. 7.3.

Thirdly, the speech of Abraham to the rich man must needes be true, which is, that Lazarus (now dead) is com­forted, Luk. 16.25. But how comforted after death, and wherein, if hee were not then in pleasures, as the other was in paine?

Therefore the preferment of the godly is great by their happy death,Vse. 1 Psal. 97.11. Here, They sowed in teares, there they shall reape in ioy, Psal. 126.5. Here, vpon tempestu­ous seas, there at anchor in their owne roade, and porte of peace; Here in their bondage, there in their Iubilee of re­demption: Here in trauell, there deliuered: Here taken from the societie of men, there admitted into the society of the Angels, and of the perfect spirits of iust men: Here in their strange Countrey, there in their owne house. Here liuing by faith, there by sight: and here absent from the Lord, but there in his presence. No eye hath seene, nor eare hath heard, nor heart can conceiue what God hath prepared for those that loue him, sayth Saint Paul, 1. Cor. 2.9. We haue seene many strange things, we haue heard of more, and the heart that is so large, how can it but conceiue more then eyther Eye can see, or eare heare of; that is, not onely more strange, but most wonderfull things? And yet one (speaking of this great glory of the Saints in Heauenly places) sayth, If thou seest any admirable thing, say, it is not it: for then thou shouldest not see it: And if thou hea­rest of any excellent thing, yet say it is not it; for then thou shouldst neuer haue it. Or lastly: if thou canst conceiue, (as thou mayest) some strange thing indeed, and passing wonderfull: say also, it is not it, for then should it not enter into thy heart. And then can any greater prefer­ment befall the dead in Christ, then to bee raysed to that, which no eye can see, nor eare heare of, nor heart mortall [Page 68]conceyue? Wee cannot conceyue Adams excellent e­state in the earthly Paradise: and how then shall wee bee able to conceyue the vnconceyueable happy life of the righteous in the heauenly Paradise of God? or if our eyes dazle at the light of the Sunne, how will they sinke into their holes to behold the light of the sonnes of God in glory?

When the Queene of the South beheld the glory and attendance that Salomon had, the order of his Realme, the array of his seruants, the variety of his waiters and at­tendants, their dyet, their places, their happy life to serue in the presence of so wise a King; beeing rauished there­with, shee brake forth, and sayde: Happy are thy men, Happy are these thy seruants which stand continually before thee, and heare thy wisedome, 1. King. 10.8. But when the godly shall see with open countenance, in whose pre­sence they stand, and shall stand euer; with what company? namely of Cherubims and Seraphims, Angels, Thrones, Dominions, Patriarkes, Priests, Prophets, Apostles, Con­fessors, Martyrs, and all blessed soules; in what place? to wit, the Court of Heauen, not Salomons earthly Court; & how? not as strangers, like the Queene of the South; but as the royall Queene of Salomon, married to Christ, the true Salomon, with the crowne of righteousnesse for euer; there to behold the blessed Trinity, the Father, Sonne, and holy Ghost; there to bee, and liue continually in the presence of God, and beautifull countenance of Iesus Christ. How can they containe themselues? What Halle-luijahs will they sing to God Almighty of his prayse, and saluation? What ioy will they not conceyue to see the thousands there that prayse the Lord day and night? Will they not breake out, and say: Happy are wee, and vnspeakeably happy that shall stand thus before God the Father, and the true wise­dome of God, (the true Salomon, Iesus Christ his sonne) for euer, there to heare his wisdome, and to behold his glory? For the particularities of this place, and for the sundry kindes and measures of glory therein, I list not to bee [Page 69]curious; and what I had to teach thereof by the Scrip­tures, I haue written already in a SermonThe third sermon of life and death. on Esay, 57.2. onely, as one very well sayeth, God send vs thither, and we will be contented with the lowest roome. Yet to say somewhat more, and not much, of our great preferment in heauen, and as it were, to set it in our eye, for the better raysing of our mindes thither; Let vs goe vp with Moses into mount Nebo, and see at a blush,Deut. 34.1 2.3 4. Apoc. 22.10 and farre off the heauenly Canaan; or with Iohn the Diuine, in­to Gods mountaine, and with a like quicke, but darke sight, behold (as in some short Carde or Mappe) the Ie­rusalem aboue, that wee may withdraw our sight from the Deuils mountaine of things below, Math. 4.8. The place is Heauen, called by the Apostle, The third heauen, 2. Cor. 12.2. and elsewhere, the Bridegroomes Chamber, Apoc. 19.5. Math. 25.10. A very large and princely roome, Lightned with the glory of the Lambe, Apoc. 21.23. The company good, as wee heard, and the time of our be­ing there, world without end: though the company were good, yet if the roome were straight and vnpleasant, it were nothing: and though the roome were large and pleasant, the company beeing naught, it would little de­light a good man. And though both were, as heart could desire, for themselues, yet if our time in them were short, our departing from them would bee as vncomfor­table▪ but here the roome, company, and time, do all three conspire to make our ioy full. Psal. 16.11. Apoc. 21.25.

Further, for the happinesse of the soule after death, be­fore the body come vnto it at the resurrection, the happi­nesse of it must needes bee great, seeing it shall ceasse to sinne, and shall bee wholly ioyned to the Lord in truth, and neuer displease him any more. The knowledge, the wisedome, the vnderstanding of it, darkened here in this mid-vale, shall in that cleare firmament, receyue a glori­ous shining by the face of Christ, that Sunne of righteous­nes. It shall bee no more knowledge and wisedome, and [Page 70]vnderstanding in part: but this, in part shall bee done a­way; and wee shall bee absolutely wise, absolutely wee shall vnderstand, know and loue God: absolutely wee shall serue him, and keepe an absolute Sabboth to him: Heb. 4.9. Esa 66.23. There shall bee no more igno­rance of God, nor distrust in God, no more contempt of Teachers, nor neede of teaching, no more Magistrate and Subiect, Pastor and people: for Christ shall bee our Tem­ple, Apoc. 21.22. Our foode, that is, our spirituall foode shall bee The tree of life, Apoc. 22.1. Our Teacher and Gouernour shall bee God, and Christ themselues; for then, God shall bee all in all vnto vs, 1 Cor. 15.28. not mediately, as heere by the Word and Sacraments; but immediately without these, and directly by himselfe, without Magistrate or Minister.

And for the body, when it is come to the soule at the Resurrection; what a comfortable meeting will that bee of two such friends and louers, so long kept asunder? How will the soule welcome her companion and yoke-fellow in the crosses and tempests of this life? How louingly will they enter together into their Masters ioy? Where before it was full of sores, sicknesse and paine: now it shall be a sound body for euer; in which shall bee neither sicke­nesse nor paine hereafter. It did hunger and thirst, it shal neuer hunger and thirst any more. It was a mortall body, now it shall neuer dye againe, 1. Cor. 15.44. It was dull and lumpish, it shall bee as the glorious body of Ie­sus Christ, Philip. 3.21. Light and actiue, able as spee­dily, and with as naturall a motion to ascend vpward, as it is to goe downeward. It was a sorrowfull and weeping body, now All teares shall bee wiped away, Apocal. 21.4. It shal sorrow and weepe no more. Finally, both body, and soule in louing armes together, shall reigne with Christ for euer. They shal walke in the path of life, their glory shal be greater in the pleasures of the Lord, then we can coceiue, or mans tong vtter. And therfore as it was said at the crow­ning of Salomon, that the people so reioyced, that is, with such [Page 71]an exceeding great ioy, that the earth rang againe: 1. King. 1.40: So, how can any pleasures be wanting, where the true Salomon and his royall Spouse shall both be crowned together with glory in the Kingdome of Heauen? Such honour haue the Saints; and therefore great without que­stion is their preferment euery way, and so much greater, because presently at their death, they receyue in their bles­sed soules but the moyty of that happy estate, which they are sure to haue whole and full at the resurrection.

This doctrine is wickedly crossed by the Papists in their Article of the soules passing to the paines of Purga­tory presently after death:Ʋse. 2 specially where they make the paines there, and burning therein as intollerable and great as those paines, and that burning, which is in the helles of the damned, saue that there is a comming out of Purga­tory, but no redemption in hell.

But how are the godly comforted (as Lazarus here) at their death, when after their death they are thus tormen­ted? and where they thus labour in Purgatory, how can they bee sayde to rest from their labours? Did the theefe that went to Paradise goe to Purgatory? Luk. 23.43. or did Saint Paul, who desired to bee with Christ, desire to bee with him in Purgatory? Philip. 1.23.

Indeede to be with Christ (as the Apostle there spea­keth) is best of all. And though it be not possible, as one sayth, eyther to finde Christ in hell, or to misse him in heauen; yet a Christian should bee of the mind to desire rather to bee in hell with Christ, then in heauen without him? But shall wee thinke that the Apostle was ignoraunt where Christ was, when he so earnestly desired his disso­lution to be with him? And if hee knew, as no doubt but hee did, that hee was in heauen: then there is as little doubt, but his desire was, at his death, to bee in heauen with him.

If it be said, that the case of these two was extraordina­rie, as being the case of two Martyres, who therefore pre­sently went to heauen: It may be answered for the theefe, [Page 72]that his death was not a Martyrs death, though his salua­tion was extraordinary: for the Papists owne doctrine is, that they who suffer as Martyrs, must suffer as voluntaries for Christ, and with intent of making satisfaction to God by such martyrdome: but the theeues punishment was for himselfe onely against his will, and without that satisfy­ing mind that is required in a Martyr, Luk. 23.41.

And if any had neede to goe to Purgatory for the end that the Papists send their dead thither: why not this con­uerted theefe, seeing hee had so short a time to purge in af­ter his conuersion? But for Saint Paul, though hee were a Martyr for Christ, yet where doth it appeare, when hee spake these words: I desire to bee loosed to bee with Christ: that he knew hee should so suffer for him?

Indeede it was prophesied that hee should bee bound a [...] Ierusalem for him, Act. 21.11. It was also sayde in gene­ral terms, That bands and afflictions did abide him in euery city, Act. 20.2 [...]. But it cannot bee shewed that he then knew certainely that by Death he should glorifie God as a Martyr. True it is, that hee was ready not to be bound onely, but to dye at Ierusalem for the name of the Lord Iesus, Act. 21.13: Yet how doth it appeare that he was certaine he should die for it there, or otherwhere? But why should Martyrs bee exempt more then other Saints from Purgatory? It seemes that this Apostle of the Gentiles, (though a Martyr) did not exempt himselfe from the common estate of all the blessed after death: for when hee had spoken of such afflictions as the Elect suffer here, & of the glory to come: hee immediatly speaking in the plural of all Saints, addeth, Wee know that when our earthly house is destroyed, wee haue a building giuen vs of God, 2. Cor. 5.1. As if hee should haue sayde, So soone as wee lay downe the one, we re­ceyue the other; so soone as wee remoue from the body, wee dwell with the Lord, 2. Cor. 5.8. and so soone as we put off corruption, wee put on glory.

This is the common fauour of the Elect, and not the particular priuiledge of one more then of another. So [Page 73]Purgatory prayers are put out of office, and Purgatory fire is proued iniurious to the peaceable deaths of the god­ly departed in the faith of Christ.

Thur farre for the estate of Lazarus after his death, the contrary estate of the Rich-man after his death fol­loweth

The Rich man also dyed, and was buried.

Wee before noted, that death is the common roade­way of rich and poore: for Lazarus dyed, and the rich man also dyed. That, that followeth after his death is the next thing to be considered. And this concerneth him in his body or soule. That which concerneth him in his body is That it was buried; I doubt not but solemnely, and in great pompe. The old Translator sayth, Hee was buried in Hell, as it were in his owne Parish: but we reade no such thing in the originall Greeke: It sayth onely, He was buried.

Lazarus (belike) was not; or not with such a traine of followers, because he was poore; therefore his Buriall is not spoken of. Which therefore doth not condemne the buriall of the dead, but their sinfull partiality, who follow the rich (though wicked) to their graues, and neglect the poore (though godly) to honest their buriall.

The duety of reuerend buriall is a necessary Christian duty, and it is not reproued here; saue that it was a good duty ill done, and to a person vnworthy, and vainely done.

From hence learne, that the body of a Christian, the soule being departed from it,Doct. is reuerently to be put into the earth. It i [...] fallen asleepe: 1. Thess. 4.14. And therefore Christians must lay it to bed by decent buriall; It is the Sanct [...]fi [...]d Temple of the Holy Ghost: [...]. Cor. 6.19. The members of Christ therefore must reuerently bury it; It shall be partaker with the soule in glory: and therfore as the companion of a glorified soule, it cannot bee negle­cted [Page 74]without sinne. Could Iehu say of wicked Iezabel: Ʋisite that cursed woman and bury her, for shee is a Kinges daughter? 2. King. 9.34. And shall not wee visite our blessed brethren and sisters, and bury them? beeing all of them (for any thing wee know to the contrary) the chil­dren of the King of heauen? Stephen was lamented, and buried, Act. 8 2. And the Church in her pittifull Song complaineth; That the Heathen did not onely kill the bodies of Gods Saints, but left them aboue ground vnbu­ried, Psal. 79.2. Abraham bought a possession of the Hittites, for the doing of this duty to his dead, Gen. 23.4. Iacob gaue a charge for his buriall, Gen. 47.29.30. And Ioseph by faith, when he dyed, gaue commandement for his bones, Heb. 11.22. So certaine it is that the bodies of the dead must bee honoured with their graues.

The reasons. Hereby wee build vp the beleefe of the resurrection: for the graue is our bed, in which wee are layde to sleepe till our awaking at the last trumpet. Dan. 12.2.1, Thess. 4.16.17. And the burying of our bodyes is like the sowing of seede, which men commit to the earth with sure hope (after it is corrupted) that it shall rise againe.

Secondly, Christ was buried, Math. 27.60: And why (then) should any Christian which is a member of Christ, want christian buriall?

Thirdly, the Law that bids vs to couer the naked, bids vs in so doing, to couer the dead.Amb in Lib. [...]ob. cap. 1. And if when our friendes are taking their iourney into some strange coun­tries, wee, in our loue doe bring them some part of their way: shall not Christian loue moue vs, when they are taking their long iourney into the farre countrey of the dead, neuer to returne, to bring them going, by fol­lowing them christianly to their graues?

Lastly, the bodies of the righteous were the Or­gans or the instruments of the holy Ghost to all good duties: and shall instruments so sanctified, bee neglected as profane?

A reproofe of the Papists, who professe to keepe the reliks of Saints; that is, some parts of their bodies vnburied; which (if they were Saints in deede) they should bury with honor, and not punish with the reward of condemned mens mem­bers, or of Traitors iustly depriued of buriall.

Thus most diuinely, our Soueraigne Lord King Iames, in his Praemonition. A like reproofe of some great ones a­mong our selues, who denie, or doe not performe to their dead this duty, so seemely, needefull, and charitable; either out of some euil custome, or for no warrantable abstinence. Which, what is it but to pierce (though not Christ himselfe, yet) the faithfull in Christ with the speare of a second death, after death? Ioh. 19.34. That is, after one death, to put them to another. Our following of them to their graues is the testimony of our loue; by it we witnesse how we affected them aliue: and loue (if it be sound loue, and without guile) will goe as farre as it can. It is also witnesse of the reuerence we bore thē for good things; as our mour­ning doth shewe our losse, by the losse of them to vs in their deaths.

If then we truly loued our friends, how can we tarry at home, not accompanying them (as farre as may be) in their way to the earth, the house of all the liuing? Why doth not our loue goe with them as farre as it can, if we loued them? and if we reuerenced their good parts; why doe we not shewe as much, by expressing at their graues our griefe, for so many good things buried with them? But some goe too far, as these come too short, who drowne the credit of Chri­stian funerals with immoderate howlings and taking on. A­gainst such the Apostle: Sorrow not as they who haue no hope, 1. Thes. 4.13. Christ wept for Lazarus, Ioh. 11.35: but not so. And they that mourne so immoderately, giue suspicious tokens that they weepe for their owne losse, rather then for the losse of a friend: and that they more esteeme their owne good, then his gaine by death. Some for their bellies, or for a mourning gowne follow the wicked rich with praises to their graue, who yet will not honest a godly poore mans [Page 76]buriall with their presence, or with a good word. These are such as buried this rich-man, and despised Lazarus. So farre for that that concerned this rich-man in his body, that fol­loweth which concerned him in his soule.

Verse. 23.

And being in hell in torments.

For this rich mans estate in his soule, it was miserable and pittifull, though his buriall were glorious. Here was a change indeede, not more sudden then fearefull to sinners. A little before ruffling in wealth; now his soule is in hell, and his body among the wormes. So many at this day, flaunt it in great brauery: and the next newes we heare, is, their bodies are in graue, and their soules God knowes where. Yea many die, and because we heare no more of them but that they be dead, we neither regard how they died, nor what is like to come of them, dying without re­pentance. Therefore this terrible example is left as a war­ning to vs, in time to consider what followeth after death: and that is, a life after this life, either in ioy vnspeakable, or in torments endlesse. For with the last breathe in our bodies, we goe presently in our soules to heauen or hell: good men to heauen, bad men to hell, Hebr. 9.27. Though men liue as beasts, yet they shall not die as beasts: that is, if they liue wickedly and die in sinne, the beasts death shall be farre bet­ter then theirs. For, they in their death end their misery; those in death, doe but beginne theirs, that shall haue no end.

But to come to the words themselues, it is said, that the rich mans soule was in hell in torments: and here is shewed wither his soule went, to wit, to hell; and what followed there. For the first: hell, or the place of hell is here descri­bed by those paines of sense which are in it: and they are called hell torments. For hell is not onely a place of custo­dy as prisons here; but of custody and torment: therefore, is this rich man said to be in hell in torments. He that dwelt [Page 77]in a stately pallace while he liued, now dead, dwelleth in an inglorious place of torments. He that had braue fellowes for his companions, hath for companions now, the diuell and his Angels: He that fed delicately, is now fed with fire and brimstone. He that had his pleasure here, is now tor­mented: and he is said to be tormented in hell; both in re­gard of the extremitie of torment, and eternitie of terme there. Which teacheth that there is no ease in hell,Doct. 1. The fi [...]st branch of it. nor end of hell, or no going out of hell, nor end of torments in hell. For where hell is, there are torments: and in hell, there is no redemption; that is comming out.

This is the doctrine; and this doctrine is a roote of two branches: The first, that there is an extremitie of torments in hell; The second, that these torments in hell are endlesse. For the extremitie of the torments, it is expressed in the Scriptures, by things most dreadfull, and terrible out of measure; as vnquenchable fire; Math. 3.12: a lake of fire, burning with brimstone: Apoc. 19.20: and a lake of fire and brimstone, Apoc. 20.10. Of all torments none is so extreame as by fire: for fire, and all destruction by fire, is terrible. But it is more, and most terrible euer to flote vpon a riuer of fire; nay, euer to be ouer head and eares in a burning lake of fire and brimstone. Terrible needes must this be, i [...] any thing in the world be terrible. Therefore, Esay crieth out: Who can dwell with the deuouring fire? who can dwell with the euer­lasting burning? Esa. 33.14. As if he had said, no man can. And yet the damned (whom God will throwe into it) shall by the power of his iustice be strengthened for their greater increase of torments vnspeakeable, to be in it, and to burne in it world without end.

Further, and for further terrour, it is called vtter darknesse: Math. 22.13: where is fire, yea a whole lake of it, and no light: or a darke land couered with deadly obscuritie, where the light that [...]s, is darkenesse Iob. 10. [...]1.22. It were terrible to be in a dungeon of darknes for a short time: how terrible then, to be in this hell of darknesse for euer? They that loue darknes more then light, shall haue inough of it [Page 78]here, and passe from affected darknes to vtter darknes, from one darknes to another. We reade of torments inuented by men, and of cruell ones indeede, inflicted by heathen-men vpon Christians: as fornaces of fire, caldrons of boiling oile, brasen Bulles, and that Moloch in the valley of Hin­nom, where Idolators burnt their children to the dwell: 1. King. 11.7. But hell is larger then so, and the thing exceedes all report. 1. King. 10.7. Nebuchadnezars fornace was heated seuen times: Dan. 3.19: this more then seuenty times seuen. To be shut vp in the belly of a brasen Bull ouer a small fire; and there to be till the heate kill him, must needes be a lingring and terrible death: but hell is much worse, and without end. Therfore doth the Prophet Esay compare hell to Tophet: Esa 30.33: and Mathew, speaking of it, calles it Gehenna, Math. 5.22, That is Tophet: because of the la­mentable screakings of children, sacrificed in that fire: but the screakings of young and old in the Tophet of hell, the fire and burning there, is both intollerable and eternall.

Thus hell torments must needes be great in respect of the extremitie.

The reasons. The greater sufferings, the greater torment. The sufferings spoken of are exceeding great, and yet farre lesse then any of those that are prepared for the damned in the Tophet of hell. For these earthly may be expressed and conceiued, those in hell cannot?

Secondly, the wrath of God shall then be executed to the full against sinners and vpon sinne, which is executed more fauourably here, and with some mixture of clemencie. Al­so, the diuels are in place and put in office to further the af­fliction in that lake of torments.

Thirdly, if those torments that afflict the body onely, be so great and intollerable, how great and intollerable must they be that shall afflict both soule and body in hell? The torments of hell are vniuersall in all the parts of the body, and tender powers of the minde together: all at once shall be tormented.

The paines of this life are (for the most part) particular, [Page 79]in some part of the body, or in some facultie of the soule: and yet how extreame they sometimes proue to be, and how insufferable, they that feele them can tell. The tooth­ache is but the griefe of one part, perhaps but of one tooth; and yet some hauing it in some extremitie, haue wished themselues out of the world: the like of the stone, strangu­ry, and the like. What then, when euery part shall be rac­ked, and euery facultie tormented? and when they shall crie out in hell with this rich man, O, I am tormented in this flame? Luk. 16.24. One, speaking at the crosse of those tor­tures to which that cursed parricide,M. Henry Greenwood at [...] crosse. Rauilliack (the murde­rer of the last french Henry) was put vnto, writeth thus:

His arme that did that cursed act was taken from his shoulder: his nailes pulled from his hands and feete: his flesh piece by piece, fet from him with hote burning pin­cers, and burnt before his face: and he rent asunder in the end, with foure horses. This is much; but the booke writ­ten of his terrible and deserued death, speaketh of much more: and yet all this and more might, without any pulles or the least touch of the soule, haue bin endured, if the cause had bin good for which he so died. But in this lake of brim­stone and fire that is neuer quenched; all parts, as head, armes legs, hands, feet, & what not, all shal be tormented and euer tormented; not in an artificiall fornace, as that of France, but in the great wine presse of the wrath of God, Apoc. 14. [...]9, and in that horrible burning which the breath of the Lord, (like a riuer of brimstone) doth kindle continually, Esa. 30.33. Some pieces of flesh shall not onely be set from them, as from that french parricide with burning pincers; but if this be a torment, (as who can deny it) all the flesh on their backes shall be so, or rather much worse tormented by di­uels in hell His nailes were pulled from his fingers and feete once they shall be tormented euer, as if theirs were euer so. One arme was taken from his shoulder;Books of the ter­rible and deserued death of [...] R [...] ­uill [...]acke. the booke saith, by consuming it in terribl maner, in fire and brim­stone: here, all the members of their body shall euer burne [Page 80]in fire and brimstone, and neuer be consumed. Hee was rent by horses: and diuels shall racke these in euery mem­ber. If his breasts were pinched and seared; the brawne of his armes and thighes, the calfe of his legges, and other fleshy parts of his body: if into the holes of his flesh that the bur­ning pincers made, were powred scalding oyle, rosin, pitch, and brimstone, as the booke saith: which made the tormen­ted creature to yell out with horrible outcries, like some tormented soule in hell; surely the damned in hell shal haue inough of such things, hippe and thigh.

And yet I haue said nothing of the soule, nor her torments that exceede all this, besides, that it shall be so and much worse for euer.

Now, who will deny (these things well considered) the first branch of the Doctrine to be true, that there is an ex­treamitie of torments in hell?

If then we auoide the breach of mens lawes because of those chastisements and paines of death,Vse. which are threatned to those that breake them: how much more should we beware of the breach of Gods law, which is so threatned with punishments intollerable, and death eternall in hell? If a law were made, that whosoeuer drinkes wine, shall vp­on conuiction, for sometime hold his whole arme in the fire, or in boiling lead for a punishment, how many should we see drunken with wine, though they loued it? but God, he that can cast into hell, hath made a law, that whosoeuer eateth and drinketh with sinners, or as sinners doe shall be cut off, (or all in pieces) to destruction, Math. 24.50.51, and be thrust into hell, both arme, body, and soule; where they shall be tormented day and night in the fire that neuer goeth out: and should not this be inough to cut the cup from our mouth, Ioel, 1.5, I meane of excesse and drunkennes? So much and intollerably doe they suffer who come into this place of torment, that Christ bids vs rather to cut off and [...]ast away our right hand or foote, that is, the dearest things [...]e haue, then with them, to be cast into this euerlasting [...]re, Math. 18.8. And if this firy argument cannot moue vs, [Page 81]what will? If wee should heare a sudden crie of fire, fire, how would it trouble vs? but Gods word, and Gods Mi­nisters, that preach his word, speake of an eternall fire that still burneth, and hath euer burnt from the beginning of time, ordained before time was; euen fire and much wood, a lake of fire, and pit of burning fire: and should not this trouble euery bone in our body? Or, if fire come, will we be as s [...]ubble for it?

I know that my speech of this is not pleasing: alas then, what pleasure can it be to feele it? I speake not to please your eares; I speake to saue your soules. And whether I speake or hold my peace, the fire burnes still.

As fathers threaten their yong children with the fire, so we doe you with hell fire; not to cast you in but to make you to runne further from it: and the meditation cannot but be profitable, and euen breake the stone in your hearts. When Baltazar sawe the hand that wrote, it troubled him out of measure, Dan. 5.5.6. And if we would often com­mon with our hearts by the word of these things, it could no lesse trouble vs to heare of them, then it troubled that great Monarch to see the writing on the wall. Besides, the feare of these, would make vs feare to sinne, according to that; tremble and sinne not, Psal. 4.4. And he that so feareth hell, shall escape it; as he that neither feares so, nor at all, shall be sure to fall into it. For (as one saith truly) none is so deepe in these torments, as he who least thought of them.

But we put this euill day farre from vs; and that makes vs to sit on our seats of sinne, as we doe, Am. 6.3. We reade not the word, or, what we reade there, we beleeue not; and therefore we runne into excesse, as if there were no hell. All the account that some make of hell is, that they shall cast fire brands there; but such are fire-brands there­of: and to such it may be said, as men vse to say, when they haue well supped in an Inne; that the worst dish is behind: that is, the reckening, and that that must pay for all. Then will follow; Sonne remember thou hast had thy pleasures, [Page 82]Luk. 16.25, or good things here. The summe is, he that wil follow his lusts, shall (without his repentance) follow them to his cost. He that burnes in adultery, shall burne in hell. He that killes here, shall hang there: and hee shall thirst there, Luc. 16.24, that is drunken heere. And what shall it profit a man to winne the whole world, and lose his owne soule? Math. 16.26.

This made Paul to keepe a cleare conscience: Act. 24.16. and the consideration of this makes the godly feare to of­fend. Therefore Ierom: Whatsoeuer I doe, me thinkes I heare this sound still in my eares: Arise ye dead, and come to iudgement. And thus in regard of the extreamitie of torments, hell is intollerable: so is it also, in respect of the continuance and tea [...]me there. For they that are in hell, are there in paines without ease, and time without end.

And (now) where the damned shall be in hell, time without end:Doct. 2. The second branch of it we secondly, (which is the second branch of the doctrine) learne, that the torments in hell are end­lesse.

So Daniel speaking of the resurrection of sinners, de­scribeth the condition to which they shall bee raysed in their bodies, by the names of shame and contempt, and cals it, Perpetuall shame and contempt, Dan. 12. [...]. And Apoc. 20.10. Hell is called the pit bottomlesse because in it, there is no redemption, and from it no returning & the Apostle Iude, alluding to the fire that they of Sodome, and the Ci­ties about were destroyed with, sayth in effect, that they passed from the vehemencie of that fire, to the vengeance of eternall fire, Iude 7. Where hee likewise calleth Hell-fire, eternall fire.

The smoake of this furnace is alwayes mounting, it ascendeth vp for euer, sayth Saint Iohn, Apoc. 14.11. This tormenting worme of hell is immortall: The worm dyeth not, sayth Saint Marke, Mark 9.46. Hitherto be­longs that answer of Abraham to this Rich-man, They that would goe from hence to you cannot, neyther can they come from thence, that is, from hell to vs, Luk. 16.26. His mea­ning [Page 83]is, Once in hell, euer in it.

One vseth this comparison, As a man that is, to be pressed to death, calleth for more, and more weight, but cannot haue it: so all the condemned to second death, through an extremity of torments in that lake of death, call for death, that there might bee an end: but death flyes from them, that is, end there is none, nor any to bee ho­ped for: For when so many thousands of yeares are past, as haue beene moments of time since time began, the tor­ments of the damned cannot end that are endlesse.

The Reasons. Where there is no repentance of sinne, there is no end of torments for sinne. After death, and in hell, there can be no repentance: for Repentance is by the Ministery of the word, and the vse of it is in this life onely. 2. Tim. 2.25. Apoc. 2.21.

Secondly, so long as the damned continue sinfull, so long they shal be tormented: but they must needs euer be sinfull in hell: and therefore in hell, euer bee tormented: This oyle can neuer be spent, the oyle of sinne: and ther­fore the wrath of God which is as fire to the same, must e­uer burne: and who shall quench it?

Thirdly, they that despise the counsell of God against themselues; and therefore will not heare when God cal­leth; must make account to call, to wit, too late with this Rich man in hell, and not bee heard, Prou. 1.24.28. And if they bee not heard, how can they bee deliuered? and if they bee, how can the Scripture be true?

A terror to those, who vse so ill the short time of their repentance; seeing when they be gone hence,Vse. they shall find no way to it; though as Esau, they seeke it with tears, Heb. 12.17. Besides, what fooles, and how vnwise are they who will purchase eternall torments with so short pleasures? May they not say, as a King once sayde; who being inforced in an extreame thirst of water, to yeelde himselfe to the enemie: after hee had drunke of the wa­ter so dearely bought, brake out into these words: For [Page 84]how short a pleasure, what a Kingdome hau [...] I lost? So, what ioyes haue I lost, and of what continuance? and what mi­series haue I gained, and how endlesse, for lesse then a dish of water? What madnesse to enioy the pleasures of sinne for a season, and after to lye in torments of fire for e­uer?

This Rich man would haue giuen the world, if the world had beene his to giue: to haue beene ridde of his torments but one poore houre, or to haue had any little ease of them in hell: but if all the Angels and Saints of Heauen, would, as wee may not thinke they would, haue begged of Christ for him, they could haue done him no good in that place of torments.

Therefore while there is hope, and while the Lord may bee found, let vs seeke him, to witte, in the way of obedience to the Gospell, Esay 55.6. If yee will not come into this place of torments where there is no com­ming out, heare Moses and the Prophets in the olde Te­stament, and Christ in the New, Luc. 16.28. Come to Church: Heare reuerently at Church, and practise care­fully when yee are gone from Church. Repent yee of your sinnes, and that to day; that is, while yee may call and be heard, conuert and bee healed.

It can be no good husbandrie in you or any, to put off your sowing till the time of reaping come, and to pay for a few simple trifles, the losse of your precious soules for euer. O thinke of these things now in these dayes of mer­cy, and while the gate is open, striue to enter. The soule is more worth then all the world, and all riches pleasures, and profites are but losse and dung in comparison of it: Further, to be seuered from God & Christ in the torments of hell, is a plague aboue all plagues, mortall and earthly.

Now is the time to redeeme thy poore soule: I say now, because thou knowest not what may happen in an houre, and in a moment wee are taken away. O therefore [Page 85]now, and presently goe about it, now, and presently aban­don thy short pleasures, that thou mayest reigne with God for euer in the long life of his saluation. And now and presently mortifie sinne in thy earthly members, that thy soule may be saued in the day of the Lord, and thy bodie and soule may ioyfully meete at the resurrection of all bo­dies, in the kingdome prepared for them, and there bee for euer.

Here wee reade of a great man in Hell, or of a great rich man in torments in hell,Doct. 3. which teacheth that no wic­ked ones (how great soeuer) are for that, or because of such eminence, exempt from the place and condemnation of hell. Therefore Tophet, to which hell is compared, and the burning Tophet, is sayd to be prepared for the King, Esa. 30.33. I may say for Kings, and all in kingly places that doe wickedly. And Samuel sayde to all Israel, not on­ly if yee doe wickedly, yee shall perish: but if your king doe wickedly, yee and your King shall perish, 1. Sam. 12.25. not subiects onely, but King and Subiects. The Lu­cifer of Babylon must to hell, as well as the meanest in Ba­bylon, Esa. 14.9.12. that commits iniquity.

The Reasons. The soule that sinneth shall dye, Ezech. 18 4. It is spoken of euery soule and person, poore and rich.

Secondly, the sinne that it committed is eyther puni­shed in Christ, or shall be in th [...]se that are committers of it, whosoeuer they be: for vnder other termes, God neuer yet pardoned sinne: and Christ who tooke vpon him the sinnes of his Elect, descended to the hels in the suffe­rings of his life and death, to answere his Fathers iustice, and for his peoples faults. But are al kings, are all great ones in Christ? Hath Christ suffered for all that are Noble? and for all that are rich and mighty? doth not the Scripture say, Not many wise, not many mighty, nor many noble are called? 1. Cor. 1.26.

Now, if many be not, and but few are; they that are not called, must suffer for that, and all that, which Christ [Page 86]neuer suffered for them: and where but in Hell? and what torments but of Hell?

Thirdly, he that iudgeth his people with equity, and the world with true iudgement, Psal. 98.9. should goe against his owne rules of doing that which is equall and iust, if hee should not reward euery one according to his worke, and proceede to iudgement without respect of persons, Act. 10.34. But it is blasphemy in an high de­gree once to thinke, that howsoeuer wickednesse among men be in the place of iudgement, Eccles. 3.16, the Iudge of all the world will not deale iustly.

An admonition to great ones to serue the Lord in feare,Vse. Psal. 2.11. and not to beare themselues vpon their great wealth aboue that which is meete: for how soone & fear­fully may they bee brought downe in a moment? and what will all their glory and riches helpe them, when their pompe must descend with them to the pitte of corruption? And how can they redeeme their poore soules, and what ransome will they giue to God for them, when a whole world will not bee taken for the redemption of one soule?

This Rich man in hell, and infinite thousands in hell as rich as he while they liued, can say as much now. And what difference betweene the poore vngodly, and the vn­godly rich in hell (though great on earth,) seeing their chambers of fire and burning pitch in the infernall Lake, are like, saue that their torments may bee (and it is like) are greater? for looke how much they gloryed in themselues, and liued in delights, so much shall they haue torments and sorrow, Apoc. 18.7.

Now had it not beene better for such (while they li­ued here) to haue liued vnder the nurture of the word, & to haue come humbly and duly to it, and with as great re­uerence and loue as the poorest soule? But They hated him that rebuked in the gate, Amos 5.10. and therfore wish too late, with this Rich man in Hell, that they had not been [Page 87]such fooles and mad men, to crosse their owne saluation.

So much for the place whither the soule of this Rich man went: Now we come to shew what followed there.

He lift vp his eyes, and sawe Abraham a farre off, &c.

We haue heard whither the soule of this rich man went, to wit to hell; here is further shewed, what follow­ed there. And (first) what this rich man sawe, and (second­ly) what he said. He sawe Lazarus, and spake to Abraham. He sawe Lazarus; to wit, with the eyes of his minde, the eyes of his body being fast closed vp in the graue: and he spake to Abraham, but with an intellectuall tongue. Which sheweth, that all that followeth, is a parable-part of Scrip­ture. For soules in proper speech, haue neither eyes to see, nor tongues to speake with.

It is said hee lift vp his eyes; the more to increase his de­sire of that he could not haue, and sorrow for being deni­ed it. And that his eyes being lift vp, he sawe Abraham a farre off: or, saluation farre from the wicked: Psal. 119.155: and (which more augmented his paine) Lazarus in his bosome.

As farre as heauen and hell are asunder, so farre off saw he Abraham; and with the Mole-warp, he onely opened his eyes at his death, and saw him, and Lazarus with him in blisse. But as in his life time, he turned his eyes from Lazarus, so now at his death, God turned his face from him: and so he sawe, what he was not better, but worse for seeing. And how could it be otherwaies, hauing such a feeling of the torments he was in, and liuely sense of the f [...]uours he lost; by seeing Lazarus so happy, and himselfe so miserable? For might he not now say, What hath pride profited me? or what profit hath the pompe of riches brought me? Wisd 5.8.

Thus he sawe too late, and with late repentance at his [Page 88]death, what before he would not see. Which teacheth that death, which is preuented of the righteous, preuenteth sinners.

The rich man in the Gospel, who promised to himselfe a life of many yeeres, had not the poore life of one night to prepare for death, which tooke him away in his couetous­nesse, Luk. 12.19.20. And Agag said merrily, the bitternesse of death is past; when (the same houre) bitter death which he thought to be past, pierced him to the heart, being hewen in peeces before the Lord in Gilgal, 1. Sam. 15.32.33. And what warning had Herod, when vpon his roiall throne, in the sight of all his flatterers, hee was suddenly stricken with death by an Angel? Act. 12.23. When the old world thought least of a change, the flood of death came, Luk. 17.27. And Sodome with her Cities thought least of death, when her end came suddenly by fire from heauen. v. 29.

As therefore the diuels said to Christ, so are the wicked driuen to say to death: Art thou come to torment vs before our time? Math. 8.29. At 50: at 60: at more yeeres, it is euer out of time: and they say with Iehoram, Is it peace? 2. King: 9.23. They know not if it be.

The reasons. They haue no hope in death, and in this life onely they haue their pleasure and heauen.

Secondly, they cannot cease to sinne, and therefore cannot be in the minde to looke for death, that casteth in­to hell for sinne.

Thirdly, they are the inhabitants of the earth, vpon whom death commeth suddenly, as the snare vpon the bird, Luk 21.35.

An instruction to thinke of euery present day as of the day of our death,Vse: and to doe that euery day, that we would gladly be found doing at our dying day. For death giueth no warning, more then the theefe of his comming, Math. 24.43. And how soone are we gone? or how suddenly may our death come? perhaps before we goe out at these doores, perhaps at home, perhaps in our way, as we are go­ing [Page 89]home? some adulterers haue bene taken in their filthy sinne by death as Zimri and Cozbi were, Num. 25.7.8.14.15. Some haue withered in death, as Ieroboam [...] hand, brea­thing cruelty, 1 King. 13.4. Some drinking themselues drunken haue so died. Math. 24.50. And some, dancing on the Sabbath, haue fallen downe dead in the dance. Should not these examples be warnings to vs? should they not leade vs to Christian watchfulnesse? or, are we surer of our life, then these were?

But who considereth, that prophaning the Sabbath, swearing, whoring, drinking, and being drunken, the same day or houre may take him that tooke them suddenly? or doe we thinke to goe to heauen with a paire of dice in our hands, and a hel [...] of oathes in our mouths? But, though this rich man sawe Abraham, yet the text saith that,

He sawe Abraham a farre off:

Not to his comfort, but further tormenting. As he be­held Lazarus, so God now beholds him a farre off.

And as farre was the rich man from Abraham, as hell is farre from heauen, and as miseries without ease or end are from ioy and pleasures endlesse. This reacheth, that as the wicked are farre from Gods law, Psal. 119.150, so Gods salua­tion is farre from the wicked, Psal. 119.155. Sinne and salua­tion are two ends, that can neuer meete.

The Prophet saith, as he loued not blessing, so shall it be farre from him, Psal 109.17. And this made Paul to wish that King Agrippa, in his great pompe, had bin such as he was, Act. 26.29, not to wish himselfe such as Agrippa was in all his roialty. For he would not change coats with him, nor exchange estates, though it were to haue a Princes life for a prisoners.

The reasons. The wicked are not so neere to saluation as hypocrites, who (though they seeme to liue in the suburbs of it as he who was among the other ghests, not hauing his wedding garment) yet shall neuer be saued: Math. 22.11.13. [Page 90]being not painted tombes, but sinkes; foule with­out, and foule within.

Secondly, they must neede; be farre from God, that is, from his saluation; to whom he will say (as he doth to all wicked sinners) depart, Math 7.23. & 25 41. Psal. 6.8.

Thirdly, they are the haters of God: and such shall not come in his presence, nor neere him, Psal. 1.5. & 68.1.

Fourthly, Moses might not stand vpon holy ground till hee had put off his shooes: Exod. 3.5: how much lesse may the wicked stand vpon heauens ground, hauing not put off the foule shooes of their filthy sinnes?

An instruction to goe farre from wickednes,Vse. if we will come nere to God: & to turne to the Lord by repentance, if we would not haue the Lord, by our impenitencie, to turne from vs.

And whither shall we goe, if we goe from him? He hath the words, and with him is the well of eternall life, Ioh. 6.68. In his presence is the fulnes of ioy, Psal. 16.11, and fulnesse of all miseries in our absence from him. With him is light, with­out him we abide in darknes for euer. And now should not this enforce vs to loue his presence in the assembly, and his familiar presence in heauen? now to seeke him in his word, that heereafter wee may find him in his Kingdome: nowe to haue him, that we may haue him euer? and now to liue to his glory, that after death he may drawe vs to himselfe, and shewe vs his glory? But farre from him here, farther from him in hell. They that will not know him here, shall not know him, nor be knowen of him there. And they that will not see him neere in Christ, shall (out of Christ) see (as this rich man sawe) a farre off So much for that which this rich man saw; what hee said, followeth.

Verse. 24

And he cried and said, father Abraham.

What this rich man spake and to whom, is next to be considered. Wherein we haue his speech, in this verse: and the replye vnto it, in the two next.

In his speech I note the request hee made, and the reason; For I am tormented, &c. His request is in the maner, or matter thereof; The manner is sayde to bee with a crying speech, & with the calling Abraham, father Abraham. Because he would not be warned in time, hee cryed, or was made to crye when time was past; and hee that would not be Abrahams sonne in obedience, desireth to bee with Lazarus in Abrahams bosome.

He should haue thus cryed while hee was in the way: and before the eternall barres had closed him in.

Where wee learne, that this life is a life for mercie, and that there is no crying for mercy after it.Doct. 1. So saith Christ, The night commeth, to wit, of death, when no man can worke, Iohn 9.4. And Saint Paul exhorteth the Galathi­ans, and in them all Christians, To doe good while they haue time, Gal 6.10. As if hee had sayde: Yee shall not al­wayes haue it, nor after death. To this effect the Prophet Esay, Seeke the Lord while hee may bee found, Esa. 55.6. That is, in this life, and not in hell, where there is no fin­ding of him. Abraham left sacrificing when the Sunne went downe, Gen. 15.17. And when the Sunne of life setteth ouer vs, there is no more sacrifice for sinnes, Heb. 10.26. Therefore, sayth Salomon, All that thine hand shall finde to doe, doe it with all thy power, Eccles. 9, 10. That is, present­ly and here.

The reason is, There is neyther worke, nor inuen­tion, nor knowledge, nor wisedome in the graue, whi­ther thou goest. His meaning is, when thou art dead, thou canst neyther doe nor deuise any thing for thy saluati­on or peace in the pit of darknesse, and of death.

The Reasons. After death there is no reward, Eccles. 9.5. And then is a time of iudgement, not of mercy. Second­ly, mercy is from repentance, and repentance from the Ministery of the Word, which onely hath power in this life, 2. Tim. 2.25. Apoc. 2.21.

Thirdly, when the tree is cut downe, what hope of fruits? So after the axe of death hath beene vpon vs, [Page 92]what hope to bee fruitfull? Lastly, there is no mercy of God without saith in God, but eyther here faithfull, or ne­uer, 1. Cor. 13.10.13, & 2. Cor. 5 7.

An instruction,Vse. 1 if wee will haue mercy, to turne to the God of mercy, whiles it is called to day, Heb. 3.13. 2. Cor. 6.2. not to cry for it with this Rich man in Hell: nor with the foolish Virgines, when the gate is shut, Math. 24.10, 11. the gate of all compassion and mercy. But we say to God as the vnmercifull man to his neighbour; Come againe to morrow, Prou. 3.28. That is, wee still put off, though we know not what may be to morrow, or what the day may bring with it. To morrow, sayth Pha­raoh, Exod. 8.10. To morrow Pharaoh? And why not to day? Walke whiles yee haue light, sayeth Christ, Iohn 12.35. that is, whiles you may bee saued, striue to saluation by the light of the Gospell, lest when it is remo­ued, the darknesse of despayre come: and Whither will ye walke, not knowing whither in the darke?

A terrour to all that despise repentance when they bee called to it in this life.Ʋse. 2 Such are like to a condemned ma­lefactor that putteth off the getting of his pardon, till the Assises are come, and till it bee too late to seeke it; then he would be saued and cannot. Here men make a mocke of sinne; the reason is, they feele not the weight of it here; in Hell they shall, and when there is no hope of deliue­rance from it: for, as a peece of timber seemeth light vpon the water, but drawne to land will seeme as it is: so sinne borne vp with the patience and mercy of God here, which is as a great Sea, seemeth light to offendors: but poore soule, when thou shalt beare it without these vndersets of patience, or mercy, in the darke land of the damned in hell, then thou wilt crye out with as little hope as this rich man did, though not Father Abraham: yet God the Father of Abraham, Haue mercy vpon mee. And what hope of a tree when it is cut downe, and burneth in the fire? so what hope of sinners, cut downe by death for the fire of hell?

If this bee terrible, better now preached, then felte in hell, where is no redemption. Knowing therefore these terrors of putting off the day of visitation, 2. Cor. 5.11. why should wee not be resolued to seeke and find mer­cy with true and present repentance for all our sinnes? O therefore take no more dayes to that, that must bee done to day: so shall wee finde mercy, that is, in due time, if wee so seeke it.

Further, for this damned Rich man, as hee cryed too late, so hee begged (as wee say) at a wrong doore: For, hee sayd, Father Abraham, going to him for mercy; where the righteous goe directly, and onely to God, and to none of the Saints.

And here it may bee noted by the way, that the do­ctrine of the Inuocating dead Saints must needes want a good President, comming from a damned person in hel, and a person that fared neuer a whit better by speaking to Abraham. The voyce from heauen is, Call vpon mee in the day of thy trouble, Psal. 50.15. Ʋpon mee, sayth God, as if hee had sayde, Vpon mee onely: and it is so resolued by Christ in the same argument of his fathers seruice, Mat. 4.10. They that say, and doe otherwise, let them shew vs where it is so written, and wee will doe after them: but when God hath charged vs with an absolute seruice for himselfe, how can wee, and why should wee, with­out a dispensation from him by his word, share it be­tweene him and his creatures?

God (as we heard) hath commaunded vs to call vpon him by Iesus Christ, in our wants, with promise to heare vs: and how then can wee call vpon him with others in our trouble, without offending him in his word, and distrusting him in his promise? but this onely by the way, and yet worthy the taking vp. It is sayde in the Text, that this Rich man called Abraham, Father; where he boasted of that to which he had no right, nor good title; onely some colour of title he had to it by the carnall birth, being a Iew. He would not follow Abraham, in giuing hospitality as [Page 94]did Abraham: and yet in Hell, who must be his father, but father Abraham, whose sonne in obedience hee would not be? but all this auayled him nothing; since they onely are Abrahams children, who doe the workes of Abra­ham.

Where wee learne,Doct. 2. that it displeaseth God, and will not profite vs to glory in the bare name of a Christian, except we be Christians indeed. They that came to Ichus Bap­tisme sayde as much, but because they sayde and did not, Math. 23.3. he called them a generation of vipers, Math. 3.7 Hee might haue called them a generation of toades more truly, then true Abrahamites. And what sayd Christ to those who prophesied to others, but not to themselues, and did great workes in his name, but would do nothing for his name? Depart, sayth hee, or, hence farre from mee, yee that worke iniquity, Math. 7.22.23. That is, ye that call your selues Christians, and doe not like Christians; to hell with yee. So he that would be a Christian, and had not on the wedding garment of a true Christian, recey­ued this sentence; Binde him hand and foote, and cast him in­to vtter darkenesse, Math. 22.13. As if Christ had sayde: Deale with him, as with a prisoner, whose hands must bee bound that hee may not resist, and feet shackled that hee may not runne away. And because he loued darkenesse, the darkenesse of a subtle heart; let him passe from that darkenesse of his, to the darkenesse of hell; from one dark­nesse to another.

The like we reade of those, who pretending to bee of the houshold of faith with right beleeuers, knocked at the doore, to wit, by glorying vainely in that which they had not; after the good man of the house had shut the doore of hope against all such vaine and vaine glorious talkers: but what was the answere? I know not whence yee are? Luk. 13.25. That is, yee are meere strangers to my Fa­thers house and to me, or yee came to mee for a night, but yee continued not with mee, as mine doe: but they re­plyed; Wee haue eaten and drunke in thy presence, and [Page 95]thou hast taught in our streetes, v. 26. their meaning is, we haue beene at thy table, there wee [...]ate and dr [...]nke in the Sacrament with thy houshold people; and wee haue heard in many Sermons of thee by thy teachers in Church and Chapp [...]ll.

To this Christ reioines in the next verse; I tell you, I know you not whence ye are. v. 27. As if he had said, I said it be ore, and I say it againe that ye are none of mine. Ye did indeed dip with me in the Sacrament: there yee did eate and drinke the blessed bread and wine; but doing so with no good affection, nor simple heart, yee are and dranke your greater condemnation. Yee were baptised with the bap­tisme of water, but not of the spirit: and yee wore my line­ry, but in it, yee did seruice to my enimie. Also, yee heard, or seemed to heare many Sermons; but yee alwaies left them where yee found them: and therefore the more yee heard, because yee so heard them, that is, formally, and not in obedience, the more yee haue to answere for. I tell you therefore, I know yee not whence yee are. That is, yee are as strange to me as they that neuer heard of me in the Gos­pel, nor sawe my face in the Sacrament.

The reasons. They who be Christians in face, and not in heart and deede Christians, are but hypocrites: and being hypocrites, they are hated of God, his soule abhorreth such, Esa 1.14.15.

Secondly, they are but bastards in Israel: or, sonnes of the bond-woman that may not be heires with the sonne of the free-woman, Gal. 4.30. Some priuiledges belong vnto them, and for the true Churches sake, they receiue man [...] [...]utward good things here; but being bastards, they cannot inherit by lawe. And what shall it profit a man, If he winne the whole world, and destroy himselfe, or [...]ose himselfe: Luk. 9.25.

Thirdly, they haue to doe with that God that will not be mocked, Gal. 6.7 And then, what good will it doe them to say, they are children, when they are not? if they could de­ceiue God that looketh into the heart, as they can man that [Page 96]seeth not as God doth, they might haue some hope; but seeing God himselfe is iudge, how can they be hid?

A terrour to those who putting trust in lying vanities, haue nothing of the Church or of true baptisme in them,Vse. 1 but the name in their mouths, Ier. 7.4. Such though they say father Abraham, with this damned person; yet because they walke not by holinesse, in the steppes of the faith of Abra­ham, Rom. 4.12, they are the children of their father, Ioh. 8.44. There is an Israel in the couenant, and an Israel out; or an Israel in Christ, and an Israel that is none of Christs: as there is a circumcision in the spirit, and a circumcision in the letter; or a circumcision of the heart, and circumcision of flesh, Rom. 2.29. Now, they that haue no more in them then the Israel of an outward profession, or the baptisme of water, howsoeuer (iudging as men) we cannot denie them the name and account of Christians; yet when hee commeth to see his ghests (who is of pure eyes, and iud­geth otherwaies then man doth) hee will turne them out as intruders: command them to be taken away, to wit, from all communion with him, his blessed Angels, and glorified Saints: and send them to their owne place, where is weeping with gnashing of teeth, that is, sorrow and griefe mingled with desperation, Math. 22.13. This is the portion of their cup.

This should stirre vs vp to walke with more consci­ence in our professions.Vse. 2 For we may, as with some veile, couer our sinnes in them from men; but no profession, nor figge-leafe of profession can hide vs from him, whose eye is vpon all his ghests, Math. 22.13. He that searcheth Ieru­salem with lights: Zeph. 1.12: but neither with torch-lights nor candle, and can see without them; can find vs out in our darkest hypocrisie, to whose eyes of knowledge and prouidence, all things are naked, or as it were, vnquartered, Hebr. 4.13. His eyes are a flame of fire, and with these lights he pierceth, and looketh through euery mans heart, conscience, and conuersation: nothing is hid, or can be from them.

And therefore though we be admitted by the Minister, and allowed by men to goe for Christians; yet, if we be not Christians in life, and in the testimonie of our owne consciences so, their testimonie will little? uaile vs against Gods examination, and the witnesse of our owne hearts. If we condemne our selues, and if God condemne vs; what matter for the praise of men, or their good word, whose eyes we haue bleared with our seemings? Let vs therefore approue our selues to God and our owne consciences, by true repentance, truly and indeede to be Christians. If we haue not repented thus, let vs now beginne: and if we haue, let vs doe it more. Let vs breake off our sinnes, euen in the purpose of our hearts; and not thinke to say, or thinke we haue done inough, because we can say; We haue Abraham to our Father, Math. 3.9. For to receiue the seales of the couenant without the writing, and when we haue no promise from God in our sinfull courses, what is it but to take that which is none of ours, and with great sinne, steale Gods seales and prints, which we must bring backe againe with shame, when he that strictly obserueth all mens wayes, shall say: Depart from me, yee workers of intquitie; I know you not? Luk. 13.27. Somuch for this rich mans re­quest in the maner, the matter of it followeth.

Haue mercy on me, &c.

The matter of this rich mans request is, generally for mercy; and more specially, wherein he desireth Abraham, to shew him mercy. As that he would be so good to him, as to send Lazarus, &c.

And the mercy which he craued, is here limited to the sending downe of Lazarus to him, with a very small quantitie of water to coole his tongue, tormented in a flame of fire that neuer goeth out. But yet, by Abrahams answere, in the next verse, it appeareth that he failed euen of so small a drop of mercy; because while he liued, he would shewe no mercy to Lazarus at his gate.

And so we see that they shall receiue no mercy, who will shewe none.Doct. So Salomon: He that stoppeth his eare at the crying of the poore, be himselfe shall cry, and not be heard. Prou. 21.13. His meaning is plaine: as much as if he had said, he that turneth himself away in his compassions from the needy crying to him for some reliefe: shall cry, that is, fall into such miseries as shall make him cry, and be neuer the better; and S. Iames sayth that mercilesse men shall re­ceiue no mercy, Iames 2.13. His meaning is, that they who pitie not their brethren in their afflictions: turning away their eares that they may not heare them, and (also) their eies that they may not looke vpon them; shall (themselues) come into troubles remedilesse, and not be pitied. We haue the example in that mercilesse seruant; who, being born with in his debt of the ten thousand talents, would not beare with his f [...]llow seruant in the hundred pence, Mat. 18 24.28.30. The master, without al mercy, cast him into prison, till he should pay all that was due vnto him, ver. 34. which he could neuer doe. Thus the brethren of Ioseph, supposing they had beene met with in their owne measure, confessed that the trouble which they feared, was iust; Gen 42.21; and that they were paid iustly and truly in their owne coine.

The Reasons. It is but right that they should bee done by as they haue done to others, Iudg. 1.7. and good rea­son that they who neither regarded the commandement of God, nor the crie of his people, nor the members of his Sonne nor their owne flesh, should bee as little regarded when they are in necessity, as they regarded God and their needy brother in their good dayes. Secondly, it is but af­ter their owne measure, and the mouth of truth hath spo­ken it, that with what measure we mete, it shall be measu­red to vs againe, Math. 7.2, and so because their hearts were shut vp to others, Gods eares are shut vp to them. Thirdly, such shall haue iudgement mercilesse, Iames, 2.13. and after iudgement, there is no hearing.

An Item therefore to mercilesse men, with admoni­tion to al now and here to shew such mercy,Vse. as they mean to receyue hence and hereafter an other day, to doe to o­thers, as they would haue God to [...]oe to them: and if they would be refreshed in another world, to refresh Gods poore in this: if they would haue him to receyue them, to receyue his poore, and to shew mercy as they would haue mercy. But this was spoken of very largely before, on verse 19. Doct. 2. and Vse 2. onely thus much further: Thou that art vnmercifull to thy poore brother, and so swellest against him here in this thy day; Remember that his day may come, and thy pride come downe, when thou maist haue as great need of mercy as he, and in thy need be denied, as thou deniedst him.

If men would consider this, I meane cruell men and hard harted; or, if they would beleeue what is written, and thinke what may come, they would bee much more, both tender-hearted, and open-handed, then now they bee, laying vp mercy in the sure custody of a mercifull heart. That wherein this Rich man craued mercy, fol­loweth.

And send Lazarus that hee may dip the tippe of his finger in water, &c.

As this rich man was greatly tormented at the sight of Lazarus, thus exalted in glory: so hee is made here to bow downe low at the gate of a righteous person, Pro. 14.19. by crauing such a smal [...]hing in such humble maner of Lazarus whom he had so much despised: for to beg of Lazarus, who begged of him, and to begge a smaller mat­ter then some crummes from his table, euen one droppe of water; and yet to bee denied by him who then drunke of the riuer of the water of life, could not but be a great fall, & heart breaking. Hee that liuing on the earth, had so ma­ny seruants to ride or goe at his commaund, had not, nor could haue one in hel, to fetch him in a dish, one poor drop [Page 100]of colde water to coole the burning of his tongue, in that burning lake. This could not but adde to his torments, if any thing could bee added.

Lazarus (contrarily) who had none to helpe him, while he liued, being (now) dead in body, and in soule glorified, is not onely honoured with long life; but hath this honour added also, that the rich man who refu­sed to helpe him, seeketh helpe of him by Abraham.

And so we learne that there is no wicked man or other here so great,Doct. 1. but may haue need of the poorest and mea­nest godly man whom he here despiseth. This Rich man would haue Abraham to doe him so much pleasure as to send Lazarus to him to hell, that is, from the bosome of blisse to the bottomlesse lake, to ease him (though neuer so little) there.

It is a true prouerbe, that the euill shall bow before the good, Prou. 14.19, that is, the godly shall haue obeysance done vnto them, and the wicked shall doe it: so proude Haman sought his life of her whose life he sought, Hest. 7.7. and Iacobs sonnes were brought vpon their knees, and greatly humbled before Ioseph whom they hated and sold, Gen. 42.9.10.11. &c. Saul was twice at the courtesie and in the mercy of Dauid, whom hee persecuted to the day of his death, 2. Sam. 24. and 16. Chapters. Also Shimes that rayled at him, 2. Sam. 16.5.6. was made to bow vnto him, 2. Sam. 19.16.19. And what honour was Haman enioyned to doe to Mardochas a poore Iew, whom before hee could not looke vpon with any patience? Hest. 6.10.11. He must gloriously set him on horsebacke, and leade his horse, and what greater a fall could hee haue, (saue his last fro the halter) then to see his enemie so horsed, and in such honour, and himselfe made the man that must honor him?

Let no man therefore, though neuer so great, thinke but hee may haue neede of a meaner then himselfe before hee dye. The Reasons. All Christians are fellow, members in the Christian body. Now in the naturall body, the head [Page 101]cannot say to the foot, the highest to the lowest member, I haue no need of thee, 1. Cor. 12.21. Besides, all members haue not one office, and no member but hath some vse; Rom. 12.4. Secondly, the receits of the best are with im­perfection: and therefore the best may neede. Thirdly, all Christians are brethren, and what brother may not some­times need the helpe of his brother? Therfore the Apo­stles question mixed with reproofe, is; Why doest thou despise thy brother? Rom. 14.10.

An admonition to great ones,Vse. not to exalt themselues too insolently and proudly aboue their meaner brethren: for the wheele of things may turne, their Sunne may bee remoued, and the first may be last, Math. 20.16. or theyr next course may bee to bee inferiours; where now they are superiours: for, Whosoeuer exalteth himselfe shall be brought low, Luk. 13.11. Then their own measure may bee retur­ned, and as they despised others, so themselues may bee despised: they may stand vnder their sentence, fall vnder their hands, and lye down at their feet; which would bee considered of by those who looke so high aboue persons better then themselues, because God hath made them rather richer and greater. And thou that feest a poore man (though a good man) and despisest him, remember that God can (and perhaps will) make thee as he is, in re­spect of pouerty, and so thy contempt of thy brother may come home to thy selfe. Adonibezck the tyrant could say: As I haue done, so it is done to me, Iudg. 1.7. And Iosephs enui­ous brethrē did say, As we thought to our brother, so it is come vnto vs, Gen. 42.21. And so it is a true word, Selfe doe, selfe haue.

But in the flames of hell, what would this Rich man chiefly haue, to bee eased, as being greatly (though not one­ly) tormented? He sayth his tongue: belike because, ha­uing abused that member (as most doe) eyther to blasphe­mie, to a rayling against Gods word, Ministers and chil­dren, or some other wayes, hee was grieuously tormented in it. True it is that soules haue no tongues, but he felt in [Page 102]his soule what his tongue had done.

And this teacheth that men shall be punished, as in that measure,D [...]ct. 2. Eco [...]1.22.23.24, 25. so in that member and thing wherin they offend. Ieroboams hand was put forth against the Prophet, 1. K [...]. 13 4 and that hand which he put forth against him, dryed vp. The lost sons curious taste of meats and drinkes, was payd backe vnto him in that courser taste of the huskes which the Swine cate, Luk. 15.16. So our first Parents abused their eyes, Gen. 3.6. and God opened both their eyes, v. 7. that is, punished them that way and in that wherein they finned; for they sought his dishonour, and saw their own shame: and Zacharias the father of Iohn the Baptist, because he doubted with his tongue, Luk. 1.18. was by the Angel stricken dumbe in his tongue, vers. 10. Further also, Na­dab and Abihu, the sonnes of Aaron offered strange fire, and God co [...]sumed them strangely with fire from heauen, Le­nit. 10.1.2. So Dauid himselfe sinning in another mans wife, 2 Sam. 11.4.5. was requited by his sonne, in his owne wiues, Chap. 16.22. And the Israelites lusting for flesh, had it, and their punishment in it: for it came out at their nostrils, Num. 11.20. And thus it is plaine that men haue beene punished in that member and thing wherein they haue offended.

The reasons. God would haue vs to take knowledge of his iudgement: and how can we better, then when hee so directeth them against our faults, and members faulting, that wee may see him pointing, as with the finger, to vs, nay standing ouer vs in so particular a seueritie? For so he sheweth vs the nature and quality of the offence, by pro­ceeding in such maner, and with such speciall choyce a­gainst it. Secondly, this course and manner of punishing the member offending, is vsed by Princes often in their proceedings against malefactors in their Kingdoms, where for the breeding of more terrour in others, the member first suffereth that hath first or chiefly offended. So Ra­uilliacke (he that murdered the last Henry of France) lost first the hand wherewith he did it: and when a Noble man [Page 103]plots any treason against his King, his King will haue the head that deuised itSo 2. Ma­cab. 15.32▪ 33.. Now if Kings to good purpose, and iustly doe thus; when God doth so, wee must not doubt, but hee that is King of Kings, doth it both iustly and necessarily to admonish others.

An admonition to vse well all those members and parts,Vse. that wee would not haue to bee punished [...]eere, or tormented in hell. Some that haue abused their tongues to cursing and swearing, while they liued, at their death had neuer a tongueeyther to confesse their sinnes, or to craue pardon. So when the fift Angell had powred out his Viall vpon the throne of the beast, the beasts creatures that blasphemed God with their tongues, were tormented in their tongues, and gnew them for sorrow, Apoc. 16.10. I reade of a Seruingman in Lincolneshire, who had still in his mouth, Gods precious bloud, and at his his death,M. Perk. of the gouern­ment of the tongue, pa. 72 out of Phil. St [...]b [...]. bloud issued out most fearefully as in great streames from all parts of him, from his mouth, nose, eares, wrists, knees, heeles, toes, and all other parts, not one free, and so dyed. Thus bloud was paide with bloud; the bloud of Christ propha­ned, with a fountaine of bloud from all his body. Some for abusing others eares by words of slaunder, haue lost their owne; and many whose feet in youth were nimble to dance the morrice, at more yeares had neuer a foote nor legge to carry them voide of aches, issues and other slub­bers: they that did spoyle were spoyled, and shee that fed vpon bloud, fed the dogs: Drunkards seeke red wine, and haue red eyes, Ezech. 39 10 1. King. 21.2 [...]. Prou 23.29.30. And is not drunkennesse it selfe often punished with dropsies; and filthy whoredom also with filthy disea­ses? Hath not that member in some been pittifully taken, that became the instrument of their wanton sinne? What are these but warnings to vs? and happy are wee, if other mens harmes can make to beware: but if wee will not learne by others, wee may bee taught by our own feeling. Of this bee sure, without repentance, whatsoeuer member or thing thou abusest here, to bee punished with the losse, [Page 104]or in the anguish of that thing or member heere or hence. If thou abusest all, thou shalt be punished in all. And for riches, (that many regarde more then they doe the King­dome of Heauen:) if thou dote vpon them, and make gods of them, make account to lose them, or to lose that (which is farre better) for them. The same may be sayd of all other commodities and blessings earthly, whether chil­dren, or honour, or pleasures, or friends, Ezech. 24.25. So much for this Rich mans request; the reason of it fol­loweth.

For I am tormented in this flame.

Because this Rich man was tormented in the flames of hell, he disired some refreshing: but what? euen a drop of water: But what good could a droppe, or whole sea of water haue done him, (being things finite) for the easing of a paine infinite? And yet, as one who (for the torment hee endured) knew not what he did or spake; hee craueth onely a droppe, not a sea of water in that extremity.

Where wee learne,Doct. 1. that the torments of hell, doe not onely vexe the mindes of the tormented in hell, but so vexe them, that the tongue is supposed, and may bee sayd to talke idlely and foolishly, it cannot tell what. Thus the damned of the earth, the great men, and the rich men, be­ing far from the saluation of God, and the life of the Lamb, are brought in by Iohn, saying to the mountains, Fall on vs, and to the rocks and hils, couer vs from the presence of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lambe, Apoc. 6.15.16. which, what is it but an idle speech and impossible desire? For, what mountain can hide from God, who seeth through the darke cloud? and what rocke and hill can couer from him, who can enter when the doores are shut? Ioh. 20.26. To him the night shineth as the day: the darkenesse and light (to him) are both alike, Psal. 139.12. It was say de of them, who in the transfigu­ration saw the glory of Christ, that they wist not what they [Page 105]sayde, Luk. 9.33. The meaning is, they were so beside themselues with sudden ioy vpon that accident, that they spake they knew not what themselues, and yet they saw but a little of his great glory. How then shall they know what they say, or what to say; who shall bee farre more carried out of themselues with sudden extasies in hell, then they were rauished with gladnesse heere, who saw but a darke light, a little of their masters glory?

The Reasons. If a little sicknesse here, or some want of sleepe make the head idle, and the tongue foolish: What shall a sickenesse ouer all parts doe, and want of rest for e­uer? Secondly, the damned in hell feele that that must needes ouercome the senses, and take away reason. And what can they say or doe that is reasonable, and hath sense; who neyther haue their senses about them, nor their rea­son in any good order, or meanes to direct them?

An instruction to take heede what wee say here; that wee talke not idlely and foolishly (as this foole) in hell.Vse. 1 He that would talke wisely hereafter, must both talke & doe wisely, that is, Christianly, now. But to speake wisely, is to speake as the word of God, 1. Pet. 4.11, that is as Gods word teacheth to speake. Some haue no care to deliuer their words by this measure, who therefore talke both idle­ly and ill: but if wee must giue account for euery idle word, Math. 12.36, then for our euill wordes much more. And how great an account then must be giuen for lying words and wanton talke? for words of slaunder, and words of reproch to our neighbour? specially for words of blasphemy to God, and of lewde defiance to God, and his truth?

A terrour therefore to all vaine and foolish tongues. Here men and women make no conscience of their talke; Vse 2 so they may bee saying somewhat: Their tongues speake proud things, not the words of the Lord that are pure words, Psal. 12.3.6, and their dayes talke, all of it is to no good or wise end, if not to their owne prayse, and their neigh­bours slaunder, or to magnifie [...]selues, and cast down [Page 106]the Lord with Pharisaicall lippes. If they were in Hel, they could not talke more foolishly then some doe, or to lesse purpose: nothing in their mouthes all the day, but what they might be ashamed of at night, if it were written in a booke, and read vnto them. Is this to redeeme the time, and to walke wisely? Is our day-booke well filled, that is made vp with such vanities, as foolish talking, and foo­lish iesting, and things that are not comely? Eph. 5.4. If such speake foolishly in hell, they spake foolishly here, and not to any vse of godly edifying; and so neither there nor here were their words good. And so we see that one ef­fect of hell-torments is, to take away all sence and vnder­standing from those that are so tormented.

Now, where this Rich man calleth the flame of hell, a tormenting flame,Doct. 2 hee she weth (as hath beene noted al­ready) that hell fire is a fire of torment. But this was spo­ken of before vpon the 23. verse; and so I passe to Abra­hams replye, in the verse that followeth.

Verse. 25

But Abraham sayde, Sonne remember, &c.

Abraham now replyeth: The summe of which is, that that small comfort, which was none indeed, or else as good as none, could not be granted him. And heere hee putteth him in remembrance (though in so actiue a con­science hee could not but remember) that he had his hea­nen here, and so could not haue it vpon the earth, and in hell too: but Lazarus contrarily: and that therefore La­zarus hath now changed turnes with him; Lazarus being in the bosome offelicitie, where hee shall euer bee comfor­ted, and he in the bottome of hell, where he shall neuer see comfortable day, but be euer tormented. Also, that there is such a gulfe of distance set betweene the places of their opposite abidings; that there is no passing from one to an­other, or possibility of going betweene.

This is the summe and meaning of Abrahams replie to the Rich man, in these twoverses, the 25. and 26: where it may [Page 107]bee considered in what maner, or by what force of words he replyed; and what was the matter of his replie: for the manner, it is in these words, Sonne, remember; and it is in fitte words, though in words of no comfort to a tormen­ted soule, and soule in hell. Sonne, sayth Abraham, as if hee had sayde, Thou Israel in the flesh, and not in Christ, remember, which thou canst not forget if thou wouldest, thou hast had thy pleasures, and all thy good here, that is, here thou hast had no other god, but them, or it: In them was thy life buried, and soule hid, despising God, & Gods poore members in all thy worldly prosperity: but Laza­rus dyed in his patience, and with paine at thy gate. Hee was a true Israelue, and in [...] poore life serued no other but the true God: and therefore hee now reapeth for this seede of teares, the haruest of ioy: and thou for thy life, and pleasures abused, receiuest, and shalt possesse paines and woe endlesse.

In this sort replyed Abraham in this verse; where first hee cals him sonne: which is not to iustifie, but more to condemn him: for, as he called him father in no obedience, so now he cals him sonne with no comfort. Hee called him father, and would not doe as a sonne: and now hee calleth him sonne, and will not bee as a father to him. Besides, he bids him remember, for a further scourge of his conscience in the late losse of all his delights past, which hee could not but remember with horrible tor­ment and griefe.

And here wee learne, that the pleasures of sinne leaue a bitter and wofull losse of remembrance in the conscience for hereafter:Doct. therefore Zophar in Iob speaking of the re­ioycing of the wicked, how short it is, and of all the ioy of hypocrites which is but for a moment; sayth, that sin which once was sweet in the mougth of the sinner, and which hee hid vnder his tongue, to wit, as sweete sugar shall turne in his bowels, as meate doth in the stomacke; and hee shall haue a loathsome remembrance of it in the vomite of those deadly morsels, which hee shall bring vp againe: for [Page 108]God shall draw it out of his belly, Iob 20.12.13.14.15. And here that which Abner sayde to Ioab concerning the sword which was drawne without mercy, may truly bee applyed to sinne: Shall it not bee bitternesse in the later end? 2. Sam. 2.26. That is, though it please for a time, yet after a while, what pleasure can it promise or giue, when the best end of it is bitternesse? The louely lookes of wine, when the pleasant eye of it is in the cuppe, and when (as Salomon sayth) it moueth therein aright, that is leapeth or spirteth in it; hath (in those that take it immoderately) a very bitter after taste: the end of it biteth as a Serpent, and stingeth as an Adder, Prou. 23.31.32: they feele pleasure at the first, but they shall finde sorrow and paine at the last, with Remember, drunken sonne, thou hast had thy pleasures here.

Salomons young man is bidden to reioyce, that is, to take his fill of the delights of life, if no perswasion can tur [...]e him, but what is the reckoning, and what will all that dainty cheere cost him? The wise King tels him, (as one that knew something by his owne deare bought experience) That for al this God willbring him to iudgement, Eccles. 11.9, that is, the reckoning will come, and God williudge him to damnation for it. He also shall bee re­membred, and therefore this, Remember Sonne; is an Item to him. Esay speaking of such as placed all their delight in that, which we at this day call good fellowship, preparing for that troupe, and furnishing the drinke offerings for that number, sayth, speaking in Gods person and name: I will number you to the sword; there goes the reckning; that is, as yee prepared for sinners, so yee shall speede as those sinners, and as you gaue them drinke, so yee shall drinke of their cup, Esa. 65.11.12, to destruction: for, saith the Lord, My seruants shall eate, and yee shall bee hungry; my seruants shall drinke, and yee shall be thirsty; my seruants shal reioyce, and yee shall be ashamed; and my seruants shall sing for ioy of heart, and yee shall criefor sorrow of heart, and howle for vexation of mind, vers. 13.14. The meaning is, Heere my [Page 109]seruants fare ill, and yee well: hereafter all shall be con­trary; when that sting of remembrance that hath daggers-prickes, beginning to pricke, and you to feele it. Ieremie also may come in as a witnesse, who in this very case sai­ [...]th, That the wayes and inuentions of the wicked in Iu­dah shall end in much bitternesse, and as it were, in the point of a weapon, that shall pierce to the heart, Ier. 4.18. Therefore say the despisers of God, in the booke of Wisedome, being pricked of their owne consciences: Wee fooles thought his life, speaking of the godly mans life, mad­nesse, and his end without honour; but now he is counted among the children of God, and his portion is among the Saints. Wisd. 5.4.5. When they heard this saying in the voice of their consciences, Remember sonnes, they changed their note, and beganne to say, What hath our pride profited vs? and what good hath the pompe of riches brought vs? All these things are past like a shadow, and as a Poste that passeth by, verse 8.9. Thus the pleasures of sinne end in a very bitter re­membrance.

The reasons. The pleasures of sinne are a sweet poyson, that much vexeth those that cate it: and for riches ill v­sed, Christ compareth them to thornes, Math. 13.22. Now, athorne in the foot causeth great paine; but what prickings come from such thornes in the conscience? Also the lusts of sinne are but baites that haue hookes in them; and when the baite of sinne is gone, the hooke abideth still in the sinner. Secondly, it is a part of the sinners pu­nishment to feele continuall gnawings and pullings after sinne committed, by that worme that dyeth not? And if so here, how much more in that lake that burneth with fire and brimstone, where sinners shall receyue all their pen­ny worths together? Thirdly, the pleasures of the wicked goe away in their death, if they continue till they dye, as they often doe not. But to haue beene happy, and to bee miserable; what can it bring but horrible vexation and death before the time? and how can it but torment the sinner to remember that he, who once, was full of plea­sures, [Page 110]is now filled with paine? and hee who had so much liuing, now, dead, hath nothing? that is, nothing but mi­sery, sorrow, and his iust desert in the paines of hell, and se­cond death.

And admonition, not to feede vpon the sweet meate of sinne,Vse. 1 though neuer so well sawced by him that bids vs to eate, but to our destruction; at least, to a great distemper, and generall disorder in our Christian healths, or Christi­an state. If any would entise vs by the colour of the wine, let vs consider that the colour of it is deceitfull, and, as we heard, hath a biting losse of remembrance in the end of it, Prou. 23.32. When the strange woman, that is, the harlot flattereth with her words, Prou. 2.16, let vs auoyde her, as wee would some deepe ditch, Prou. 22.14. a whore is a deepe ditch, full of great danger; hee that falleth into it, shall hardly rise againe: not weake men only; but strong men haue beene deceyued by her, as Sampson; nor simple men onely, but the wisest, as Salomon, Prou. 7.26.27. Perhaps thou mayest bee called out of the good way by such as say; Come, cast in thy lot with vs, wee shall finde precious riches, and fill our houses with spoyle, Prou. 1.13.14; that is, doe as wee doe, and you shall bee rich as wee are: but consent thou not: for there will be a bitter remembrance of all these things one day. What got Bala­am by the sweet wages of sinne which hee loued? was hee not cast away by them? Iude 11. Such wages of sinne pre­uayle much at this day with too many: and with none more thē those that should be most free bestowers of the sa­cred inheritance of the Church: but for those Patrones of Church lidings that should bee faithfull doorekeepers in Gods house, and yet giue no free entrance into the doore of the sheepe; but sell that way for money to Simoniacall Hirelings, such as will open the doore, soonest and best, with a siluer key: let them not forget that these greedy morsels will come vp again in an vp braiding conscience, at the day of their death, if they repent not now in their day; and strike them with a remembrance that will sticke [Page 111]as close to them, as this of Abraham to Diues, Remember Sonne, or Church-robber, Remember that heere thou soldest heauen, and thy part in heauen for money. I might thus goe through the land, but it shall not neede, onely this is needfull, that euery priuate person remember that his sinnes whatsoeuer they proue to bee, if hee repent not for them, and forsake them, will leaue a bitter after-sent in his mind, for the time to come. And let all, young and olde, and all remember this.

A terror to greedy sinners; Vse. 2 for one day they shall heare the voyce of their conscience in these two vpbraiding words, Remember sonne. I may adde, remember daugh­ter, or daughters of pride remember; Remember Cain, how thou slewest thy brother, and remember Iudas how thou soldest thy master; and remember Saul, how thou persecutedst thy friend. Diues, thou that wouldest not giue thy crummes to Lazarus, remember, Sodome, thou that didst so vexe thy good neighbour, remember: Sinners of the old world; ye, that did nothing but eate and drinke, and marry and giue in marriage, till yee were all buried in that vniuersall graue of waters, remember: And yee that in this world, and now eate and drinke, and take your ease, neyther caring for heauen, nor fearing hell or iudgement; this that is spoken to the rich man in hell, may one day bee spoken to you there, Remember.

Sinne is an hypocrite; honey in your mouth, and poy­son in your stomacke: if the honey which is in it deceyue you; the poyson that is in it, will kill you. When the ho­ney of sinne hath spent his pleasure, the poyson that is in sinne will worke by incurable vpbraidings; & then comes, Remember sonne. Then wee must answer for all, that can­not answer for one: all the sports of our youth, & all the sinnes of our life, all the lyes wee haue tolde, all the oathes wee haue sworne, all the pleasures that wee haue beene lo­uers of more then of God; our drunken cups and compa­nies, our whoredoms, our oppressions, our pride, our thefts, our slanderings of the Gospell, and of our neighbour: all [Page 112]these, and all such as these, will one day remember vs, or bee remembred to vs, though we would forget them; there is a Table of remembrance kept, and a booke of Items, which will bee found in all consciences that are not pur­ged before they goe hence; for, conscience followeth sinne as hell doth death; and then they shall heare of all, that here would not endure to bee told of any: nothing shall then bee concealed, where here nothing must bee knowne. O therefore, let vs now remember as wee should, that here­after we may not remēber, or be remembred as we would not too late: or as this Rich man in hell. So much for the manner; the matter of Abrahams reply followeth.

That thou in thy life time receyuedst thy pleasures, &c.

The matter of Abrahams reply by deniall standeth in two things, which made the Rich mans request impossi­ble to be granted. The first, in this verse; the second in the next. The first is, because hee had his heauen of pleasures here, which ended with his end in death. The second, be­cause God had inuiolably shut vp the way, as with an euer­lasting barre, between heauen and hell. The first is taken from the iustice of God, which requiteth those with pains, who for their pleasures here, put his poore (as Diues this poore man) to paine. The second is taken from his ordi­nance eternall; which is, that there shall neuer bee any re­lease out of hell, or passage and path-way betweene heauen and bell; and this in the next verse. The first thing in this first reason of denial, is taken from the contraries of plea­sures and paine here: where, by pleasures we are to vnder­stand, not lawfull pleasures, but the pleasures of sinne: and by paine, the paines of pouerty and hunger in godly La­zarus not relieued, nor any way pittied by mercilesse Di­ues. For simply, this Rich man could not be condemned, because he had pleasures here, and Lazarus paine: but be­cause he altogether here followed his pleasures, and would not with his crummes ease this poore mans paine: as if [Page 113] Abraham had sayd, Thou hast liued to thy se [...]fe, and [...] ther to God nor thy neighbour: Thy belly was th [...] [...] thy lusts and pleasures thy gods. In these thou hast [...], and no way in Gods obedience; therefore art thou tormen­ted now, and shalt bee euer.

This was Abrahams meaning, and therefore it condem­ned not the Rich man, that he was wealthy, and had some pleasures here: but because hee was rich and cruell, and because drunken with the pleasures of life, because his minde was altogether set vpon worldly vanities▪ and in euill workes; and neuer a whit vpon heauenly things, and no time vpon goodnesse. We heard before that riches cō ­sidered in themselues and not abused by their owners, doe not bolt the doore of heauen against any, as neyther do the pleasures of life, vsed lawfully and well: for then, no Rich-man could bee saued, nor any that liueth in any plea­sures here: butAugustine poore Lazarus is in rich Abrahams bo­some, and godlinesse hath the promises of this life, and of that which is to come, 1. Tim. 4.8. And as riches, and pleasures doe not in themselues barre any out of heauen; so neyther doe pouerty and paine for themselues, bring a­ny thither: for Lazarus was not saued, because hee was poore, and in paine: but because in these, hee trusted in God, and waited for his saluation.

To winde vp, and to come to the point: That which condemned this Rich man, was the abuse, as hath beene sayde, of his wealth and pleasures heere, and because the soule of his delight was in them, not delighting in God, & hating his poore.

From whence we learne,Doct. 1 that they who heere are drow­ned in pleasures, and in the loue of their belly, must heere­after looke to liue in paine and misery, as this Rich man in the torments of hell for ever. So it is threatned to the young man, who cheared himselfe with the joy and de­lights of youth, following euery pleasure, and pleasant ob­iect, that his heart could imagine, or eye see, that for all these things, he should bee brought to iudgemen, to witte, [Page 114]to the iudgement of condemnation, Eccles. 11.9. Also when spirituall Babylon was fallea, the doome shee recey­ued for her life of pleasures was, So much as shee liued in pleasures, so much giue yee to her of torment and sorrow, Apoc. 18.7, that is, weight for weight: or as shee could make no end of her pleasures, so let her haue no end of her sorrowes, and put her deepe in hell, as her soule was deepe sunke in hellish lusts. And therefore Paul speaking of the lusts of youth, bids men to flye from them, 2. Tim. 2.22. not to goe foot-pace from them, as it that would serue; but to flye, as much as if he had said, they will spee­dily ouertake you to perdition, if you turne not speedily as vnder wing, from them to the life of righteousnesse, with them that call on the Lord with a pure heart. Iob say­eth as much in effect, where hee confesseth that God might iustly haue rooted out his plants, if his heart had walked af­ter his eye, Iob 31.7.8. I will not say how fitly, or vnfitly rather, this was spoken vnto, or of God by him concerning the counsels of the Almighty, which are alwayes iust: yet sure it is, that that holy man was perswaded that they iust­ly deserue a cutting off, who walke after their eyes heere, that is, after them in vanities: and that there is no hope for such but in their sound repentance. Looke not then if thou belong to Christ, for ioy and prosperity continually on earth; or to haue thy heauen here, and in another world: For it is a foule errour vnder the Sunne, and the dotage of those fooles, who make this world their heauen, & make heauen nothing. And if it bee true (as it is most sure) that they who will follow Christ, must swimme after him in a sea of burning glasse, Apoc. 15.2, that is, bee cast as into a sea, or follow him in a whole sea of miseries here: then to enio [...] and feele in this life (in soule and body) perpetual ease, pleasure, and content, cannot but be an vnfit thing for a true Christian, and heyre of a better life. The point therefore is plaine, that there is no hope of a better life, if wee haue our hope onely in this.

The reasons. How can we come through aduersity to [Page 115]happinesse, if wee suffer no troubles here? How can our teares be wiped away, when we haue shed none? how can we be like our head, if wee will bee crowned with rose-buds, where he was crowned with thornes? and if wee doe not suffer with him, how can wee reigne with him? The Cattell that goes in the best pasture is for slaughter, where that that feedes on the bare Common is for store: so they are for the Axe rather then for any continuance, who liue altogether at ease in the best pastures of Sion; where they that are kept on the bares Commons of troubles for well doing, are the Lords owne store.

Secondly, a man drowned is past helpe: and what helpe for those that are drowned in the pleasures as it were a whole sea of sinne? Thirdly, here they sayd to God, Depart from vs, Iob. 21.14: hereafter God will say to thē, Depart from mee yee workers of iniquitie. Here they serued their pleasures, and had no pleasure to serue God: heere­after their pleasures shall leaue them which they serued, & God whom they would not serue, shall condemne them. Here they would not bee saued, and hereafter they shall not: for Christ will say to such, as to Ierusalem, I would, but yee would not, Math. 23.37. Fourthly, the tenour and order of Gods iustice is inuiolable. Now it is a special part of the glory of his iustice, as to shew forth his mercy on the righteous, so to execute his fierce wrath vpon vnrighteous persons and sinners, Rom. 2.6: therefore the widdow that liueth in pleasures is say de to be dead while she liueth, 1. Tim. 5.6. I conclude then, that the life of pleasures is a dead life, or life of death: I meane, of second death.

And it is so that men cannot in the manner that this Rich man did liue here in pleasures,Vse. 1 and hereafter in hea­uen? then in what case and taking are the pampered & full fed Mates of our dayes, with other tipling companions, who serue their belly, and not the Lord Iesus Christ, Rom. 16.18. where is their hope? and what cōfort haue they, or can they haue, that euer they shal be saued in this course? or if God in the mean while should call them away by death; [Page 116]what good end can they make out of so bad beginnings? Let them consider this, who take no pleasure in the seruice of God, and take so much pleasure in vanity; who vpon the Sabboth leaue the Communion of the Saints at Gods house, to haue communion with sinners at Tauernes or in some Alehouse: and who day after day, fill themselues with wine and strong drinke, and seeke not the Lord; as they haue done, so they meane to doe still; to morrow, as to day, Esa. 56.12.

Let them also consider who are so tender, and keepe themselues so tenderly, that no winde may blow vpon them; the webbe of their life runs all in an euen thread, & there is no knot in it concerning these outward things, or as it is in the Psalme, They prosper alwayes, and increase in ri­ches, Psal. 73.12. Their seede it established in their sight, and their generation before their eyes, Iob 21.8: But will it be euer so? Iob sayeth, The candle of the wicked shall bee put out, their eyes shall see their destruction, and they shall drinke of the wrath of the Almighty, ver. 17.20, though there bee no changes in their life, nor bands in their death, Psal 73.4, and though their branch bee greene, yet shall they bee cut off before their day, Iob 15.32, that is, sooner then they thinke, the flame shall drye vp their branch, v. 30 & when their night is once come, where are they? They haue had their pleasures here; their good dayes are all past & gone: that which is behind when they go down to their graue, is sorrow and darkenesse, and the euill day that shall neuer leaue them. Iob the righteous, and Iude the Apostle say, They are appointed to it, Iob 21.30. Iude 4, or kept and re­serued for it. So 2. Pet. 2.9. And what comfort can there be in such pleasures, or short dayes of pleasure, whose end is with such bitternes, and the recompence eternal death? What hope of such sottish men, turned into beasts, and mastered with sensuality? what fooles that for pleasures so vaine and dearely prized, will giue heauen in exchange, [...] their part in heauen? Honours, wealth and pleasures are casuall, vn [...]table, deare, and deceitfull penny worthes; [Page 117]Let vs therefore learne to vse them without trust, and to want them without griefe: so may wee haue them heere with comfort, and not be worse for them, when wee goe hence: but take wee heede of all that fellowship, which for the wayes it taketh, may well bee called the damned fellowship, or damned crew of such as haue their pleasures here. These things are but chaffe; and who would with such earnestnesse follow that chaffe of we [...]lt [...] & pleasures here, that euery winde scattereth? Psal. 1.4. Who but fooles would so much disquiet themselues about vaine shadowes, pursuing this pleasure, that commodity, and those preferments earthly? and knowing how much they may cost vs, who would couet them that loue their sal­uation, and would not heare; Sonne, thou hast had thy pleasures here?

A reproofe of those who count them the onely happie men that alwayes (b) liue at rest,Vse. 2. and haue their fill of plea­sures in this world; for, had not Diues, Mal. 3.15 to whom Abraham (yet) saith; therefore, or because of that, thou art tormen­ted? Now, are they happy that are tormented? or, is there any happines in that? and are they not rather as Oxen, fat­ted to the day of slaughter? And if so, the state of the crosse in this life, is much rather the plaine and direct way to true happines. For, through many afflictions we enter into the king­dome of GOD: Acts 14.22. this is the way wherin CHRIST led, and we must follow; being conformeable to our head in sufferings. By these God brings his children into a nee­rer acquaintance with him: who (but for them) would be straungers to their owne Father; and who by them, or by means of them, are made to seeke him diligently. Hos: 5.15. Worldly happines (then) being such an hinderance to true happines, how can they be happy indeed, that are most hap­pie that way? and how can it be to them a blessed thing to haue no affliction in their hearts or vpon their bodyes and estates; when to be afflicted (some such way) is their best way to glorie euerlasting?

Of Lazarus it is said that he receiued paine. Lazarus was [Page 118]deare to GOD, and hee greatly loued him: yet Lazarus, (whom God so loued) liued in no ease, the Text sayth, in paize. Doct. 2. From whence we may gather (as was noted before) that the godly are (vsually) most afflicted. This was spo­ken of before, vpon these words of the 20▪ verse, Which was layd at his gate, &c: And the Lord will haue it to be so, for these reasons. First, that the Flesh might haue no cause to re­ioyce before him. 1. Cor. 1.29. Secondly, that men might desire godlinesse for it selfe: who other wayes would bee godly (or seeme to be) that they might (for it) enioy some ease and prosperitie heere. Also this would make them to seeke earthly things in matters that are pure and heauenly. Thirdly, that they might seeke him, and depend vpon him onely: which th [...]y will do in their troubles, and hardly do when they are at more liberty. And fourthly, that the mem­bers might be like their head, who was a man of sorrows. No cause (therfore) to suspect the Gospell,Vse. to be the wrong way to paradise, because it would bring vs thither by trou­bles: rather by this, that it is preached to the poore. Luc 4.18. and that the poore receyue it, Luk. 7.22. We may be sure that if there bee any more direct way to heauen then other, this is it. And we know who they were that sayde, Doe a­ny of the Rulers beleeue in him? Iohn 7.48. If then thou bee poore, and in distresse, let not that condition of thy pro­fession, in so neare a similitude to Christ, dismay thee; but reioyce rather, that thou art so like to thy Sauiour in that, wherein was the least worldly shew, and the greatest hea­uenly glory: For now thou standest not vpon any weake prop of flesh, but vpon the strong pillar of Israel, in whose name thou trustest. So much for the first impossibility in Abrahams reply, the second followeth.

Verse. 26

And besides all this, between vs and you there is a great gulfe, &c.

Heere wee haue the second parte of Abrahams reply: [Page 119]wherein hee further sheweth, how impossible it is that this Rich mans estate should bee bettered, or bee other then it is: for, hee sayth, betweene vs, and you, &c. as if he had sayd, God, by an euerlasting ord nance and law hath barred the way from vs in heauen to you in hell; betweene, there is a gulfe, or gaping pit, and no bridge ouer. And there is no hope of euer comming nearer then wee be. Further, if any would come from vs to you, which is not to bee imagined they cannot; and as they cannot, so they neuer will. This is Abrahams meaning.

Where we learne that the state of wicked men after this life is vnchangeable, and euer the same.Doct. They that are in hell can neuer come out; as they that are in heauen, can neuer come thence: and so wee see the impossibilitie of getting out of hell, being once in; for which it is called the deepe, Luk. 8.31; and of which Esay speaking sayth, He hath made it deepe, Esa. 30.33, and therefore deepe, because the damned there are so cast downe, that they neuer rise, Psal. 140.10. Christ sayth of him, whom he sent to the hels, Binde him hand and foot, Math. 22.13, as if he had sayde; by stripping him of all meanes of defence, and wayes of es­caping, let him goe and neuer returne. For they who are cast with their hands and feet bound into such a deepe, how can they come out? This was spoken of before vp­on the 23. verse, the words, And beeing in hell in torments, &c. Doct. 2. there.

But is there no comming out of hell? Then take wee heede how wee come there? that is,Vse, While wee are in the way of grace, let the deepe of hell call to deepe repen­tance, as if One deepe should call to another, Psal. 42.7. Here let vs come ou [...] of our sinnes by conuersion to God, that hereafter we come not with our sinnes, or in them to the place where is no comming out. If now wee humble our selues, wee shall bee exalted in due time, 1. Pet. 5.6: not cast downe, as they who goe to hell, are; but exalted; for to bee exalted is, to ascend vp; not to bee sent into the deepe. One speaking of the afflicted here for sinne, sayth [Page 120]truly; The deeper in hell, the higher in Heauen. His meaning is, the more men feele it here for sinne, the further they are from it, and from sinne, that casteth into Hell for euer.

A reproofe of Origens error,Vse. 2 which was, that after a time the soules which are in hell shall come out, and that at last, or after a thousand yeares, the Deuils themselues shall bee saued. Also the speeches of harrowing hell, and of bringing soules out of Purgatory; that is, soules out of the fire of Hell, are lying speeches: the faith and speeches of Pa­pists, and the current doctrine of the blind world of Chri­stendome, till within these hundred yeares: for they that are in Hell, neuer come out; and the estate in which we dye is constant, and the same for euer. Cain and Saul, and Iudas, and al reprobates, as they fell in their bodies, so they shal [...] rise in them to iudgement: no better in person, nor in better manner.

A comfort to those whose hope is in death, and whose death is peace at the last:Vse. 3 for as they dye with much com­fort, so they change not after death; but are much, and e­ternally comforted; their soules presently; and soule and body after a while. In this hope they lay vp their flesh, and in this sure hope of a better, vnchangeable, eternal life; they lay vp, as in sweet sugar the hardest parts both of their life, and death here. They know that they so rest in the hands of God, (whose wayes (as his gifts and calling) are all without repentance Rom. 1 [...].29.) that they shall not bee remoued for euer. And this hath made many to passe through the very flames of fire to God with a ioyful calm­nesse. It made our godly fathers (as may be seene at large in the eleuenth to the Hebrewes) quietly and gladly to suffer much and great aduersity; for they saw him that chā ­geth not, and looked for their abiding City, Heb. 13.15. And should not, may not this, in as good assurance, and with like hope encourage vs, as for a price, to set forth (as they did) to death? So to runne that wee may obtaine, 1. Cor. 9.24; So to fight, that wee may ouercome: 2. Tim. 4.8? [Page 121]And so to seeke Gods face of fauour here, that wee may continually see his face of glory in heauen, and euer bee with the Lord? Psal. 17.15.

So much for Abrahams reply: This rich man is sup­posed to reioyne, as followeth.

Ver. 27.28.

Then hee sayde, I pray thee, &c.

Here wee haue a further proceeding made in this Pa­rable, and vnder the person of a rich man in hell, by the fi­gure Prosopopoea. And in this the Rich man is brought in againe, making another request, which is also denyed. From which supposed request the Papists would gather, that the blessed Saints in heauen haue care of their friends on earth; that is, in speciall and carnall manner of those friends whom they knew familiarly, and loued dearely in the world. But they gather that which the Text neuer scat­tered; and it would bee remembred, that these words are the words of a Parable, and not of a thing done; the drift whereof is (as may appeare by the answer made, or suppo­sed to bee made) plainely to proue, that they who in this life refuse to giue credite to the Scriptures and word of God, may hope in vaine to bee called by men from the dead. I will not deny but Christian charity abides in the Saints in glory, not by speciall remembrance of one more then of another; for, such charitie in them extendeth it selfe indifferently and generally to all here, liuing, or yet vn­borne, whom they loue as themselues; yet it is ill proued from the example of a damned spirit in hell: for what charity, where is nothing but all hellish hate and bitter­nesse? And to say that the godly in peace, should be trou­bled particularly, or in speciall manner about their friends affayres below; what were it, but much to derogate from their true rest in the place where they haue fulnesse of ioy and pleasures for euer? Psal. 16.11.

And now where request is made by a spirit damned in hell, that Lazarus who was dead, might bee sent to the brethren of his fathers house to teach them:

Wee learne that the doctrine of teaching men,Doct. by men from the dead, is a doctrine from hell. Esay calles it a going, or doctrine of going from the liuing to the dead, Esa. 8.19. and Abazia is sayd to haue departed from God for his health, when he sent to the god of Ekron, or in that Idoll, to the Deuill for it, 2. King. 1.3.16. The like of Saul, who also was taught from hell, as Abazia was, 1. Sam. 28.8. Therfore God by Moses calles it a turning af­ter those that worke with spirites, that is, with D [...]uils; or a whoring after them, Leuit. 20.6: for how can it bee a doctrine from any place, but hell, that teacheth men thus?

The reasons. First, the Text is plaine for it: for this was the request of one damned in hel. Secondly, such doctrine is not from Heauen; and that which came from Heauen speaketh otherwaies, and contrarily, Verse 29.31. Now that which is not from heauen, or accor­ding to heauenly truth, is from hell: for there is no third way, Math. 21.25. Thirdly also, such doctrine is a meane, by wandring from God, to make men to beleeue lyes, 2. Thess. 2.11.12: and is there any thing in this kind of tea­ching, but what is hellish and diuelish?

Here we may see what to iudge of those who forsake the word which is written,Vse. for dead mens newes: it is sure they are followers of hellish doctrines; for such doctrines are the teachings of Sathan: the Doctor, a person damned in hell: the chaire contrary to Him, who sitteth in his chaire in Heauen. And what is in all this, but what is hellish, and from Sathan in all points? and whose follow­ers are they, and of what, that follow thus? Are they not Sathans followers? and followers of Sathans lyes against the word of God?

So much for the Rich mans second request. Abrahams second supposed re­plie followeth.

Ver. 29.

Abraham sayd vnto him; They haue &c.

In this second replie, Abraham tells the rich man plainly, that they get nothing by all their lab [...]ur, who forsaking the Word, looke for Reuelations; and who will be taught after their owne fancies, not by Gods teaching, nor by the ordi­narie way, and meanes appoynted by him. Against such, God himselfe complaines by his Prophet, saying: Should not a people enquire at their God? Esa. 8.19. and therefore the meaning of these words is, that the Word deliuered by Moses and the Prophets, and, accordingly since, by Christ and his Apostles, is the only ordinary meane to conuert sin­ners to God: and therfore they that refuse grace by it, shall no way receiue it from the Graues of the dead.

This I conceyne to be the meaning of Abrahams second answere to this rich man: and to be the onely reason why this second petition was made, and this peremptorie replie (secondly) made vnto it: wherein for orders sake, wee may note his answer in substance: and the vse that Abraham maketh of it. The answer in substance is, that God hauing ordained the Word written to be the onely ordinary meane for the calling of his fiue Brethren, and all Christians (yet li­uing) to repentance; it onely is sufficient, and all meanes diuided from it, vaine and vneffectuall.

Which first teacheth, that the only sealed rule of faith to saluation,Doct. 1. is the Scripture and word of God written. This is that path, that leades to the Way, the Truth, and Life, Christ Iesus: For, so saith He, who is all these vnto vs, Ioh. 14.6. and therefore he biddeth the Iewes to search: that is, exact­ly to search: or, as Hunters, who strike euery bush, seeking the game they hunt for: and to search the scriptures, that is, what is written, not vn written vanities. For, (saith he) in them yee thinke to haue eternall life, and they testifie of me. That is, in them yee may finde Christ, and in him Eternall life. Ich. 5.39. [Page 124]this is the most sure Word, 2. Pet. 1.19. or that which can neuer faile vs: all words of men may. This onely pricketh the heart with Repentance, which (without it) no miracles from Heauen, nor wonders on Earth can doe. Act: 2.37. So Heb. 4.12. it is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And therefore the heart being deeper then any Eye created can looke into, it must needs be wonderfull to the sa­uing of a sinner, aboue all words of men or Angells.

A great Prop [...]ete had no other light of direction to his steppes in true godlinesse, then that which was placed in the lanterne of the law. Psal. 119.105. and this he followed in all his way to heauen. Herein the man of God himselfe, the Minister, may haue an absolute furniture of instruction for his owne wayes, and the Peoples committed to him. 2. Tim. 3.17. And so it is plain, that no line can be iudged straight to the kingdome of God, but this of the Word, and they that are drawne by it.

The Reasons. This word is called the word of Faith, Rom: 10.8. and none but this. Now, what wee may beleeue, or put faith in, is sure. Secondly, it is as a second Tree of life. Prou 3.18. If Adam had eaten of the first, hee could not haue dyed: no more can they perish, that feede vpon the Word, the second tree of Eternall life. Thirdly, it is the sanctify­ing truth. Iob. 17.17. Ps. 1 19.9. That is, that which (& which onely) prepareth, and begetteth vs for the holy Cittie, into which nothing may come that is vncleane. Apoc: 21.27. Heb. 12.14. and (therfore) as fire it consumeth the stubble of our corrupt affections, Matth. 3.11. as a sword it cutteth from vs our putrified parts, and members of sinne. Heb. 4.12. and as Salt (that is sauory) it maketh our words, and whole con­uersation in the Gospell sweetly torellish, and well to sauour, vnto edification, among all that heare, or liue with vs.

Ʋse is against all itching after noueltyes,Vse. 2. not resting in that which is written. Saul, who would not heare Samuel aliue, went to his graue to heare him there. 1. Sam. 28.8. a very vnmeete pulpit for a Prophet to preach in.

Some would haue Angels to teach them, and some looke [Page 125]for myracles and signes done, to confirme them; but Faith is begotten by the Word, and nursed with it, being once borne in a true beleeuer. It is not giuen by voices out of the aire, nor caused by Angell or Reuelation. Ga. 1.8. The illusions of Sathan, and his lying wonders, come from the graues of the dead: and they that will haue such Teachers, put down the scepter of Gods prerogatiue in his Word written. When God said: This is my beloued Sonne, heare him. Math. 17.5. should the Disciples who heard the voyce, haue said: no, but we would heare an Angell from heauen: for hee will assure vs rather: had not this beene to cast away the word of the Lord, and our selues with it, as did rebel [...]ious Saul? 1. Sam. 15.22.23. Did not the working of Satan, and rising of An­tichrist stand vpon such a foundation? and do they not go vpon such legs to this day? 2. Thess: 2.9.10. Therfore from the liuing to the dead, is a foolish and sinfull progresse: Esa. 8.19. And those Pharisees that called for signes, and neglected the doctrine and words of Christ, were said by him to be an adulterous generation, Math. 12.38.39. that is, children born in idolatry, & of idolaters: for, the meaning is not so much of corporall, as of spirituall adultery, or whoring from God.

Further and again, as that only is to be beleeued to saluati­on, which is written: first, in the old Testament, & (since) by the men of God in the new: so, we (secondly.) learne,Doct. 2. that all re­fusings of this ordinance for grace, is to make our conuersi­on impossible by any other meanes: the text is plaine for it: and Ieremy saith, They haue reiected the word of the Lord, and what wisedome is in them? Ier. 8.9. as if he had said: they will be wise, but not as God hath commanded, and therfore fooles they are in their own course: or, they will none of that, that maketh a man wise to saluation; therfore (as vnwise) they shall perish by their own inuentions. But because this doctrine com­meth fitly to be further prosecuted in the last verse, and very last words of the parable, I referre it thither.

So much for Abrahams answer in substance: the vse hee propoundeth of it, followeth.

Let them heare them.

If Moses and the Prophets must speake from God vnto vs, thē we must heare him, speaking by them in his word, that is, by Moses, who shewed what wee should doe; and by the Prophets, who teach what wee should beleeue and doe. Also mention is made of hearing them; because in them there is worke for the eare to heare, but none (saue of reading) for the eye to see. In them wee heare a voyce, but cannot see any shape or similitude, Deut. 4.12. But this that is spoken of hearing Moses and the Prophets, be­cause no more was then written, is to be extended to the whole word of Scripture, as we haue it now; and so the whole word is to be heard, Apoc. 2.7.

The doctrine from hence is; Hearing is a necessary,Doct. & the principall meane for saluation in all Christian assem­blies or all Christian Churches, and people must heare, if they will bee saued: Therfore in Prou. 4.10, and many like Scriptures, God offers his words, & requires our cares: so Prou. 2.2. An hearkning eare, and an vnderstanding heart must go together; for the eare is the furrow that re­ceyueth the doctrine of the word, and it works not but by hearing. Christ sayth, and the same sayth the Spirit in di­uers Texts of the Reuelation: He that hath eares to heare: hee sayth not, hee that hath eyes to see, and what must hee doe? not see a Stage furnished for a Play in the Masse; but heare what the Spirit will say, to witte, by his Word and Ministers to the Congregation, Math. 13.9. Apoc. 2.7.11.17.29. & 3.6.13.22. The Apostle S. Paul teaching the beleeuing Iewes and Romanes, how sauing faith may bee gotten, sayth, Faith is by hearing, not by seeing, and Hea­ring by the Word, Rom. 10.17, to wit, preached, as ver. 8.14. not by gaudes and Images, called by the Papists, Lay-mens bookes. And he that turneth away his eare, (sayth Salomon) from the Law. Hee doth not say, his eye from seeing, but his eare from hearing it, refusing to bee instructed by it, or [Page 127]from it, by Gods ordinance; as the Masse, Priests of Rome, who do nothing in the seruice of God to common vnder­standing, but what may more properly be seen then heard: his prayer, I may say his good prayers, which hee so much trusts vnto, will proue abominable; that is, odious to God, and plagues to himselfe, Prou. 28.9. Hearing therefore is the most necessary, and most important meane for salua­tion in all the Churches of Christ.

The Reasons. As a mans mind is not knowne but by speaking; so neyther can wee know Gods will but by his word; nor what is in his word, but by hearing: Therefore God is say de to speake in his word, and speeches are to be taken with the eare, and no other wayes, Deut. 4.12. Se­condly, the eare is the conduit of knowledge to the soule; and so, of sauing knowledge to it. Thirdly, they that thirst, must come to Christ, as they that want common water come to the well, Iohn 7.37: but this well is deepe, and our eares are the buckets to draw with, Iohn 4, 11. Therefore when wee come to this well of liuing waters, wee must bring our eares (these buckets) with vs. Fourthly, when a Master speaketh, he will looke to be heard. God spake by his Prophets in theHeb. 1.1. old Testament, and by his Sonne in the new; did hee not speake to bee heard? or shall wee not cause our eares to heare? and can the Lord of his peo­ple take it well, if we refuse to heare the Master of his owne family? Fiftly, the word of Scripture is called the Power of God to saluation, Rom. 1.16; that is, his arme reuealed, Esa. 53.1, to saue all that shall bee saued in deede. But to speake properly; wee cannot see a word, and therefore wee must heare i [...], if we will bee saued by it. Sixtly, none can come to Christ but his sheepe: and all his sheepe are thus marked by him; They heare his voyce, Iohn 10.27. If then it be ne­cessary for Christians to be Christs sheepe, it is as necessary that they haue his marke, and heare what hee will say vnto them.

The duty therefore of all Christian Churches & people is to heare the Word, that is the written word of God:Vse, 1: and [Page 128]that not slackely, but with all readiuesse, Iam. 1.19. Salo­mon opposeth the duty of hearing, and the sacrifice of fools, Eccles. 4.17▪ as if hee should say, that they who refuse to heare, doe seruice as fooles; and to heare is better then all sacrifice, saith Samuel to Saul, a good Prophet to a badde King, 1. Sam. 15.22. Also no duty that wee doe to God, can please him without this; To pray is our duty, but they that refuse to heare, may spare to pray: for, as wee haue already heard, such pray in sinne, or their prayer is sinne, Prou. 28.9. To come to Christs Table is a good duty, but hee that hath not learned the mystery by hearing, comes to condemnation, 1. Cor. 11.29. To eate and drinke are necessary duties; but without the Word that sanctifieth the creature, what is our eating and drinking, but a pro­phane thing?Vse. 2 1. Tim. 4.5.

Secondly, this maketh against Popish Churches and people, in whose eares the word soundeth not, but in a strange tongue: and teacheth that they who liue in Pope­ry, liue in a wretched bondage of ignorance and sinne, to which the Diuell hath captiued their eares and whole man. Neyther can they doe any thing so long as they continue such, that will bee pleasing to God. Further, this maketh a­gainst two sorts of Recusants in our land, the Popish, and those of the Separation. And is it not a reproofe of many of our owne profession, who on our Saboth dayes, neyther shew themselues diligent, nor well disposed hearers? For though they doe not turne their backes vpon vs, as the o­ther doe; yet they looke vpon our Assemblies with little or no zeale, and some with Ieroboam set vp Idols of wan­tonnesse against them, and thinke it too farre, or much to bee at them euery Sabboth day, 1. King. 12.28.29. Or if they come to the Assemblies in the morning of the Sab­both, yet in the afternoone of the same day, they goe to their Farmes or pleasures from them, and from God in them, Luk. 14.18.20. And now how can they who come so seldome and vnwillingly (when they come) hearken? Ier. 6.10. Ezech. 33.31. How is it like that they will me­ditate [Page 129]in the Law, who delight not in it? And what good hearing without meditation? They that reioyce in vnrigh­teousnes, will neuer reioyce in the Word, that reproueth sinners, and for sinne, 2. Thess. 2.12: and can such proue good hearers? Surely, when such heare the Word, (which they heare with so little good will, it cānot butHeb. 2.1. slip & runne out, as liquor out of olde tubbes, or water out of a Sieue. And thus diuide our hearers into foure kinds of ground; the fourth ground, or part of ground will hardly be found to receyue the seede and doctrine of the Gospell with good hearing, Math. 13.8. This Christ reproued in the hearers of his time: and if our times bee such, are they not times of ill hearing, worthy to be rebuked in the gate, that is, openly, and with authority? Tit. 2.15. The suppo­sed reply of the Rich man followeth.

Verse. 30

And he sayde, nay father Abraham, &c.

It pleased not this Rich man, that his rich brethren, drowned in wealth, & in the delights of life, should heare the word at the mouth of any of Gods ordinary Ministers, whom he knew they would despise: and therefore, or because he would bee contrary to Abraham and teach him, not learne of him; he maintaineth still his first wicked po­sition & principle, which was, that one preaching to them from the dead, would doe more good vpon them for true conuersion, then all the Preachers liuing could. And therfore he sayth, Nay father Abraham, &c. or not so, but as I say, and as I rather wish; who neuer loued this teaching by the Word, whether dwelling on earth, or damned in hell. Indeede the way which God by his ordinance hath commaunded for saluation to men, is the hearing of his Word by Moses and the Prophets; but that way is not sufficient, or I had not beene here: and if hee would giue way for this (that I speake of,) my fiue brethren should not [Page 130]come hither. Thus in effect hee reasoneth against God, in speaking to Abraham, rather then hee will confesse the way hee hath followed, and would prescribe to others, to bee (as indeede it is) deceitfull, and to destruction.

From hence learne,Doct. 1. that the nature of the wicked is ra­ther to charge God, then themselues for sinne. So doe they whom Christ will set on the left hand of damnation, in his last iudgement: for, they say, When saw wee thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sicke, or in prison, and did not minister vnto thee? Math. 25.44: as if they had sayde, Thou chargest vs that wee saw thee hungry and thirsty, & without clothes, and in sicknesse, and prison, and did not helpe thee? but when did wee euer see thee in such straites and want, and withdrew our hand of helpe from thee? And therefore we haue wrong to be so charged, and the thing is not true.

Thus Adam blamed God for giuing him no better a wife, not himselfe for following in euill, when hee should haue led in goodnesse. The woman, sayth he, which thou gauest to be with mee, to wit, as my wife & helper, Gen. 3.12. Thus also most vile reprobates impute their damnati­on to Gods will that cannot be resisted, Rom. 9.19. And that reprobate that hid his talent, sayde, I knew that thou wast an hard man, Math. 25.14, speaking against Gods seuerity, but nothing of his own sinne. So they sayd that Gods wayes were not equall, who themselues were equall no way, Ezech. 18.29: The like we reade of Cain: for he when God reproued him for the bloud of his brother, speakes not of his great murther, but of his ouer hard pu­nishment, Gen. 4.13. He thought that God was too sharpe and spake too seuerely to him for it. It is plaine therfore, that it is the nature of the wicked to blame God, and not blame worthy man.

The Reasons. Wicked men are proud by nature, and proud men will bee in no fault. Secondly, the Deuils chil­dren (such as the wicked bee) are contrary to Gods chil­dren; and therefore where they iustifie the Lord, these iu­stifie [Page 131]themselues. Thirdly, the wicked, beeing his children who abode not in the truth, and whose name is slaunderer; must needes do his works, and say as hee will haue them, Iohn 8.44. Fourthly, such men are the vowed enemies of God: and what care such what they say of him, and how they charge him.

Here then we see whose children,Vse. and children of what stocke and parentage they are, who complaine of God, when they should giue him glory in his iudgements. They are not of the house of Dauid, neyther haue they Dauids spirit in them: for, he confessed his fault, that God might be iustified in his sayings, and pure when he iudgeth, Psal. 51.4. He blamed not God, when he had told him by Na­than, That euill should be raysed against him out of his own house, that the sword of death should strike it, that his wiues should be defiled, & that the child should die, 2 Sam. 12.11; but cōfesseth, as it was, that he had deserued no lesse, & that God in so doing, was holy, righteous and iust, v. 13. Nor did Eli charge God when he threatned the destruction of his house by young Samuel, but subscribed, that he might iustly do what Samuel had sayd, 1. Sam. 3.18: for, sayth he, It is the Lord who can do nothing but wel. And with him subscribed Hezechiah in a like message sent him from God, 2 Kin. 20.19. But what did Herod when Iohn reproued him? He could not beare the rebuke of his mouth, but sent him to Warde for beeing so bolde with the King, Mar. 6.17. So the Iewes, when Steuen iustly charged them, in stead of iustifying the Lord in that iust reproofe, they rather iusti­fied themselues in their wickednesse, and in madnesse ran vpon him, and with stones murthered him, Act. 7.51.57. And what shall we say of our owne times? when Gods hand lyes vpon vs in some generall or priuate strokes for sin: doe we confesse our sins, and that God in visiting for them is righteous? or do we not rather murmur, and take on in the affliction, as if he dealt hardly, or too cruelly with vs in smiting so for so small matters? Doe we say as Da­niel, O Lord, righteousnes belongeth vnto thee, and to vs [Page 132]open shame, or the confusion of our faces? Dan. 9.7: or doe we not rather breake out by impatience and bitter cur­sing, at the least by fretting against God, and his righte­ous iudgments, as too galling and rigorous? The condem­nation that is of themselues, some haue learned here of a damned soule in hell to transferre, not iustly vpon them­selues, but vniustly vpon God, that they haue wrong to be damned: for, say they, how can we chuse, when God will haue it so? Rom. 9.19.

But this Rich man knew by himselfe, that the loue of the word could finde no entrance where the loue of world­ly pleasures had filled the heart: so it had in his fiue bre­thren; and therfore he was perswaded that all labor of tea­ching by the word should be in vaine and lost vpon them.

And here we secondly learne,Doct. 2. that worldly couetous­nesse and voluptuous life quench in natural men all desire of saluation by the Word: for such will not come to the Assemblies with the bidden guests, who absented them­selues by their Farmes and yokes of oxen from it, Luk. 14.18.19: or if they come, they are sure to come without all affection of hearing thither; & their mind goeth after their couetousnesse, Ezech. 33.31. Their wits are so exercised & taken vp with thoughts about worldly things, that they haue neyther leasure nor mind to attend to the word de­liuered, or hauing spēt all edge (this way) before they come: being come, they fall asleepe when they should heare; or if they be awake, and listen a little, they haue neither loue nor liking to that which is taught.

The Reasons. Worldly riches and voluptuous life are thornes, Luk. 8.14; as therefore thorns make the sowne fields vnfruitfull, so the thorns ofriches and voluptuous life make the word where it is taught vnprofitable Second­ly, these are enmity to God, Iam. 4 4, and what enemy will not in corruption, doe all he can to destroy his enemie? Thirdly, they that follow these lusts are called, if they bee men, adulterers, and if women, adulteresses, I am. 4.4: not corporall, but spirituall, which is farre worse; for corporall [Page 133]adultery is against the second Table; but this is against God in the first; and a man may be a corporall Adulterer, as Dauid, and yet not hate God: but hee that goes a who­ring from him by a worldly and couetous heart, cannot but stand vp against him, as the hater of him, and enemy of his couenant.

An instruction to emptie our mindes and hands of all thorns of earthly cares and pleasures,Vse 1 before we come to the meanes of saluation in the assemblie; lest, as thornes in our sowen fields, they make the word barren, and without fruit in our hearing. They that plough and sowe their fieldes, will rid vp by the rootes, all Bryers, thorns, and bushes. So should they vse no lesse dilgence to free their hearts frō the thornes and bushes of bad affections, that come to heare: and this fore-skin of a couetous and wanton heart, should likewise be circumcised by the spirit of God, in a new crea­ture, if they will heare with pleasure and commoditie, Ier: 4.4. But they who come stuff with worldly lusts, shall goe away emptie of heauenly fillings. So saith blessed Marie, in her thankfull song: He hath filled the hungry with good things, but the rich he sendeth away emptie: to wit, of things that are truely good; Luc. 1.53. and so their hearing is made dam­nable, and with sinne vnto them.

A like instruction to be contented with a meane Estate,Vse 2 and to refrain from all desire of hauing much in the world­lie part. For, the world is a dangerous morsell, 1. Tim. 6.9. Most men go a whering after it; and the best men cast (but) too wanton an Eye vpon it. Which maketh the Lord in these outward things, rather to keepe his children short, for their good, then to surfet them with fulnes. And (here) he dealeth with them, as wise Parents with their children, whom they truely loue. For, when they perceiue them to abuse vnto wantōnes, a full allowance, they will draw back their hand in a sparer portion. So God, perceiuing his children (because they be full-fed) wantonly to take pleasure in the gauds & fashions of this world, doeth therefore many times keepe them low, & denie them that plēty of these worldly things [Page 134]that the wicked haue. He knoweth how weake our braines are to beare the strong Wine of prosperity; and therefore Hee (sometimes) makes vs to drinke bitter aduersities out of a weaker cup. And who can deny that it is farre better to creepe with safety, then to clime to destruction? & so better to keepe on the low ground, then to rise and fall. And now thirdly, this damned soule, though he could not be ignorant, how litle, nay, how nothing the necromancy that he spake of, could profit any to true conuersion, seeing the word is suf­ficient: yet because hee loued to be contentious, and to take side against godly truth, hee holdeth himselfe fast to his former false ground, which was, that good might be recey­ued by the preaching of men from the dead.

But this is (after) as truely denyed by Abraham, as it was falsly auouched by him,Doct. 3. vers. 31. where we learn, that none from the dead did euer yet conuert soule. Therefore it was forbidden to the Israell of God, to aske counsell at the dead: Deut. 18.11. And among other sinnes, wherewith the Lord professed himselfe to haue been angred by rebellious Israell, one was, that they remained among the graues, Esa. 65.4. that is (as it is expounded, Esa. 8.19) were Necroman­cers: and sought vnto them that had familiar spirits, and that could diuine. But Lazarus the brother of Martha was raised by Christ: after he had bin foure daies in his graue, Io. 11.39. Did the Iews for that, beleene? nay, but rather they consulted to put him to death? Ioh. 12.10. Also, Christ raysed himselse from the dead. Why did not the Iewes care to heare him? rather they bribed the souldyers to belye his Resurrection. Math: 28, 12, 13, 14. Further, when Christ rose, many dead Saints (his bed fellowes) rose with him and were seene in the holie cittie, Math: 27.52.53. were the Iewes euer a whit the better for it, to their conuersion? nay, but they were more hardned rather in their vnbele [...]fe. The reasons. That this cannot open the heart, in the point of Faith, must needes shut it; And nothing can turne the heart to God, but that which hath power from him so to doe: which power the Word onely hath, not the lying Diumations of the dead.

Secondly, there is no conuersion without Faith. But what faith is to be giuen to deuils in dead mens skinnes? Thirdly, that which is able to conuert the heart, hath a promise from God, and blessing thereunto: But is any such promise made to that which prouoketh him so much as Necroman­cie is sayd to doe? and doth he blesse that which himselfe hath forbidden?

The vse is against the kingdom of darknes in Popery,Vse, set on foot, and kept going by Necromancies and sundry ap­paritions of the dead, all damnable and fabulous; but those are sooner and more beleeued then the Word and Scrip­turein all that darke and superstitious climate of Papistic [...]l Paganisme. To such the Apostle sayth: If the Gospell bee hid, it is to them that are lost, 2. Cor. 4.3: but this was spo­ken of in the vse of the first doctrine of the former verse.

Lastly, this contrarying mind in Diues, doth as it were, hold vs the light to see what frowardnes naturally, is shut vp in all stubborne Christians. And it teacheth,Doct 4. that it is the property of a very froward person to reiect the Word. They that were very froward in Iob, say de to the Almigh­ty, Depart from vs, to wit, in the gouernment of thy word: We desire not the knowledge of thy wayes, that is, wee de­sire not thy acquaintance in the truth, as neyther thy pre­sence among vs by it in the mouths of thy seruants, Iob, 21.14; or what care wee whether thou bee among vs in thy comman dements, which we loue not? rather we desire thy roome then thy company in such matters. So of Israel that would not heare, the Lord himselfe sayth, Israel would none of me, Psal. 81.11. the meaning is, They who reiect my Word, reiect Me:& are they not persons very froward that so doe? They that would not haue Christ to reigne ouer them, with his word, are called by himselfe enemyes: Luc. 19.27. by Esay, rebellious, or froward enemies, Esa. 30.9. and, are they not wicked, and sinners indeede (such as will helpe the d [...]?) who rebell against God, in his owne soueraign­tie, and the parts of his Dominion? The reasons. The pat­terne of such frowardnes, wee haue here in a very rebellious [Page 136]soule, damned in hell. Secondly, the Word is the Lords scep­ter, and they that reiect it, put downe their Soueraigns scep­ter. This were treason against an earthly Maiestie: & can that other bee lesse, or better then rebellious frowardnes, or treason (in the highest point of treason) against the Lord? Thirdly, such mean to liue quietly in all sinne: seeing they reiect the word that reproueth sinne, and the scornfull sin­ner. And, are they not most wickedly froward, who say of sinne, This is my rest, here will dwell; to wit, in the chayre of sinne, with the worst of sinners? Psal. 1.1. Fourthly, they that meditate in the law, and they that delight in it, are, and are said to be very obedient children; therefore they are froward children and vngodly, by the true rule of contra­ries, who cannot abide the Word, much lesse abide to meditate in, or reade it.

A reproofe of Popish both Masters and Schollers,Vse. 1 who (as we heard) preach and beleeue, that it is dangerous to haue the Word of God among them, that is, among the common sort of them, in a tongue they vnderstand, or in their mother tongue; for such cannot but carry the brand of persons frowardly wicked. But there are in our owne profession who heare it, and reade in it, and yet reiect the nurture of it in their liues, and reason against it in their talke, as this Rich man here. Surely, if there be not much rebellious wickednesse in this, then was this damned soule in hel, in some thing tollerable, or not very ill.

An admonition therefore to all that would auoide the blot & note of very froward persons,se. 2 or persons froward­ly wicked and rebellious to God, not to crosse his Word eyther with their conuersation, or tongues; and where the wicked as Antipodes goe against the footings of it; to walke with it in a right path, and to adorne it with their obedi­ence in a holy life: where froward persons and very wic­ked speake against the Word, our reasoning must bee for it; where they shut their eares, we must open our eares vn­to it: where they hate admonition, we must heare and in­crease in learning, Prou. 1.5. Increase (I say) as they that [Page 137]liue by their meate, and haue a good digestion: for the righ­teous, the more they eate spiritually, the more they may: Fooles say to the Prophets, Prophesie not, Amos 2.12, that is, speake as wee would haue you, or say nothing; and these are fooles indeed: but Christians (that are godly wise) say to the Prophets, that is, to those that teach thē in the word, Prophesie right things to vs, Esa. 30.10, that is, tell vs of our faults that we may amend them; and wherin we faile, tell vs, that we may do better hereafter, or, Let the righteous smite vs, to wit, with the seuerity of the Law; for that shall be a benefite, Psal. 141.5; that is, that shall doe vs good in­deed, and saue vs from the sweet, but killing poison of flat­tring lips; and let not their tongues, nor let them (that haue such tongues destroy vs. The last answer of Abraham, or his answer to this rich mans reply, followeth.

Ver. 31.

Then he sayde, if they heare not Moses, &c.

Ahraham perceiuing that words could not satisfie this im­portunate & cuntentious rich-man, breaks off al further talke with him, and leaues him; telling him (at parting) which he had tolde him before, that Moses and the Prophets must be heard to saluation; and that not beleeuing the Word, it is impossible to beleeue without it, though men should come from the dead vnto vs. And thus hee concludes the Parable, and all speech with this rich man in it. The con­clusion is that which already was spoken of; and the re­petition thereof is safe for vs, Phil. 3.1: for, besides that it stands vpon a sure ground of truth; it is auouched twice, the better to assure vs, Gen. 41.32. And it teacheth that there is no perswading of him that will not bee perswaded by the Word written. Therefore sayd the counterfeit Samuel to reprobate Saul: Wherefore doest thou aske of me, seeing the Lord is gone from thee? 1. Sam. 28.16. as if he had sayde, How shall I perswade thee, when God by his word can [Page 138]not? and what answer can I make when his Prophets will make mone? v. 15. So Ieremie, They haue reiected the word of the Lord, and what wisedome is in them? Ier. 8.9, that is, the word cannot teach them, and what then shall teach them wisedome? Therefore Moses speaking of the ordinances and lawes which God had commaunded, telleth the peo­ple, that to keepe and do them is their wisdome, Deut: 4.5.6. his meaning is, that if they will be truly wise, or made wise vnto saluation, it must be by the ordinances & lawes writ­ten: or, if not by these, by nothing. And Christ sends the Iewes to the Scriptures, to search them: not to dead mens graues, to rake in them. Ioh: 5, 39. As if he had sayde, eyther there, or no where. For, to resolue the Iewes, concerning Him, whome the Father sent: what could do it sooner, or so well as the Word, that is mightie in operation, liuely for edi­fication? Hebrewes 4.12. The reasons. First, nothing is written in Moses and the scriptures, that is not written in the heart of nature, Rom. 2.14.15. And what naturall Man doeth not confesse the effect of the Law, as that which is so deepely engrauen in him, that he cannot rubb it out-by any pretences or colours to the contrary? Secondly, the prophe­cyes that went before, are daily fulfilled. And what will they beleeue who shal doubt of that which they haue heard, which they haue seene with their eies, and which (euen) their hands, in some sort haue handled of the word of life? 1. Ioh. 1, 1. But all these are contained in the word written: and (therefore) they that refuse to heare it, what wil they heare? Thirdly, it is safe to heare Moses & the other writings of holy men in scrip­ture; but safe no way (Sathan transforming himselfe (as hee doth) into an angel of light.) to leane vnto things not writ­ten: or rest vpon vn written vanities, taken vp vpon credite, of sathā the father, as of lyers, so of lies, Ioh. 8.44. and wher­fore hath God giuen vs a most sure word of the Prophetes, 2. Pet. 1, 19. but that we shold not leaue a certainty, for an vn­certaintie: or goe frō that which will surely leade vs in our way, to that which wil be sure to lead vs out? Fourthly, the word written containeth the promises of a most excellent life, [Page 139]and that Sternall in heauen: also the threatnings of a most intollerable death, and that euerlasting in the hells. If then, a short life of pleasures, short and vaine, so moue vs: how can we but be moued with the long life of those pleasures, that are for euer? And if wee be so much troubled to heare of death (which in some ends all paines, and beginnes all ioyes that haue no end) how can that but shake all our bones, as with a most violent wind, that speaketh of the death that is endles; which all reprobates die, & are neuer dead? There­fore, not to be moued with all this, what can moue vs? So it is sealed vp for a sure truth, that what the word of God cā not do, that no word of man or Angell can doe. They that will not be healed by it, are incurable; so saith my text: nei­ther wil they be perswaded, thogh one rose frōthe dead again.

A terrour to those that cannot be perswaded by the word, whether Atheists in life, or opinion. For,Vse. such go against all principles and lights both of grace & nature. And they that so doe, what can perswade them but the Magistrates staffe? and what answer must be made them, but silence? 2. Kings, 18, 36. How wretched then is the condition of those po­pish poore people that cannot come at the word, to be per­swaded by it, and of their popish leaders, that thinke to per­swade without it? And, what doe such, but bury Christ in stead of being buryed with Christ? also, by making igno­rance the Mother of deuotion (which is the step-mother of reli­gion) what do they but keepe him still in his graue? But, let vs of christian England, to whom this day-starre of the gospel hath so long appeared, and in such glorie & brightnes, vn­der the two Sunnes of Q. Elisabeth, of infinite worthy me­mory, & of our dread Soueraign, K. Iames now liuing, and the happines of our land, & the glory of all Christendom: let vs (I say) the Christians of bappy England follovv, to wit, in obedience, this starre of the Worde, to the house where Christ is borne: Math. 2.9. and auoyde or turne from, by our conformitie with it, the house where the dead are, and whose guests are in the depth of hell, Pro. 9.18. So shal we bee partakers of those ioyes, which Lazarus hath in Abra­hams [Page]bosome, and escape the torments, and place of tor­ments, wherein Abraham left this Rich-man, and wee leaue him. And pray wee, that wee may imitate Lazarus, and be like him, and not be as this cruell Rich-man, doing as hee did, and ending vvhere he left: lest being like him in vvic­kednes, our revvard bee like his in hell.

From which woefull Pit of death Eternall, Hee that bought vs with a price, saue vs, and that by Faith in him only, who only is the Sauiour, Iesus Christ the righteous; to whom with the Father and the Holy Ghost, bee praise for e­uer, in all the Churches. Amen.

FINIS.

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