THE ROYALL PASSING-BELL: OR, DAVIDS SVMMONS to the GRAVE. A Sermon preached (lately) in the Parish-Church of Orchard-Portman in SOMMERSET. At the Funerall of the most hopefull, and truely-noble, Sr. HVGH PORTMAN, Baronet; the great losse and sorrow both of his Name and Countrie. By HVMPHREY SYDENHAM, Master of Arts, late Fellow of Wadham Colledge in OXFORD.

Qui virtutem alterius publicarivult, virtuti laborat, non gloria. ANT. SEN.

LONDON, Printed by W. Stansby, for Nathaniel Butter. An. Dom. 1630.

TO MY DESERVEDLY honour'd, IOHN HELE, of Wembury, Esquire; the great hope of his NAME, and expectation of his COVNTRY.


THis flies not to you for peru­sall barely, and suruey, but for protection; I want not a a Reader, but a Vindicator; such a one, as can aswell iustifie Jnnocence, as shrine it: an Agent remark'd, no lesse for Goodnes, than for Power. And, in this my Appeale to Worth and Iustice, J sincerely wish, that, whilest I a­wake your Charity, I pull not on you Enuy, or Dishonour; 'tis not my intention, but my feare. For, amongst other my weake endeuours [Page]which haue formerly aduanc'd me to the vnde­serued applause of many. This had the Hap­pinesse to displease, and I thinke it not my wound, but my Glory. Impartiall discourses are equally blunt, and honest; and tho some­times, they haue their relish and farewell in di­stast, yet that is their Crowne, and not their Fate. Howeuer, an affected Stoicisme I euer loath'd, and not onely as a Stoicisme, but as af­fected. There is nothing so open to contempt and laughter, as a compos'd sullennesse. 'Tis true, a natiue roughnes and austeritie of language, I haue pupill'd from my youth, That's mine owne, J confesse, but I dote not on it; my Child but I lull it not; and therefore, if it sometimes proue way­ward, and offensiue, Nature praevaricates, and not will. I was neuer yet guiltie of a premedita­ted trespasse on mens Names, or Honours; J haue neither so much time for rancour, nor disposi­tion; or had I both, I should haue here strangled them for his deare memory, to whom I owed, not onely my seruices, but my selfe. Hee was nobly your Associate, (my honoured Sir) and (for J must still boast in the liuery) my Master; nay, my Patron; and, what is higher yet, my friend, my vnshaken friend. These haue so ingag'd me [Page]both in Ciuill and Religious bonds, that should I labour to dissolue either by any Reall affront, or discourtesie to his Tribe, I were neither mor­rall man, nor Christian; and yet, loe, I am more than both, a Diuine; but, a saucie one ('tis ru­mour'd) and a Cruell; a sordid also, and Con­temptuous; and, (O my impossible guilt! my vniust calamitie!) a false one, and vnthankfull. Such Liueries I can weare with as much patience as the the former, tho not triumph; and yet these, againe are not my Crosse, but my Laurell; I grow greene in the opinion of mine owne inno­cence, tho wither, perhaps, in the Respects of others; who, if they were not so hot as to rauish words vnnaturally, and force them from the ho­nest intentions of the Speaker, they should finde, I am a Leuite, still, and not a Libeller; and, what I preach'd, was not an Inuectiue, but a Sermon. Me thinkes, it is neither Charitie, nor Iudgement in a hearer, to wrest Diuinity to the disuantage of his owne honour; 'twas n'ere my Custome to rubbe harshly, on particulars; my re­proofes were, as they should be, of sinnes, and not of Persons; and those too, ran generally, which no Circumstances can reduce to paticulars, but where the Parties are either preiudicate, or [Page] guiltie; And, if any such I met with (as I hope I did not) let them learne to reforme, and not to censure; and thanke him for his home-spun ad­uertisements, who was rather a Remembran­cer of their errors, than a Iudge. This is the way to reseue their honour, and my innocence; which, as it hath beene euer taught to magnifie worth in others; so, to presume on yours, that, when you haue read impartially this sad peece of mine, you will say that I haue beene a faith­full Seruant to my dead friend, and yours, whose noble respects to mee, I haue found to suruiue in you; whom, for many solid and materiall fauours, I am captiu'd to obserue, whilest I am

Yours most thankfully deuoted, HVM. SYDENHAM.

TO THE RIGHT HONORABLE Edward Lord Howard, Ba­ron of Escrick, my ve­ry Honourable good LORD.


WHen you were pleased, the other yeare, to ad­mit me your Chaplaine, I had intended, and pre­par'd my paraemetiall ob­lations to your Lordship, from the Pulpit; But I was, then, preuen­ted by a sudden, and seuere sicknesse, which hath, hitherto, disabled me to tender you any thing that way. Now, because I would [Page]not be obnoxious to a double mis-conceit, I present you this peece from the Presse, that your Lordship may reade, and so remember the record, both of my deuotions, and endea­uours. I heartily wish I were so compleatly recouer'd for attendance, that I might as well speake, as write my labours; and then (perhaps) I should better satisfie your Lordship, then in this common kind; which hath made many of my Profession (and may mee) ridiculous. But I feare my infirmities, and therefore, as I must begge the honourable charitie of your Pa­tience, so of your Protection also. For as I was, at first, a suiter for your seruice, (In which I haue cause to glorie) both for the greatnesse and goodnesse of your selfe, and name) so I am, still for the graces of it: and doe hope, that when you haue made a ful­ler enquiry, who I am, and where I haue spent my time, and talent; your Lordship will not disdaine to owne, and honour mee with your succeding fauours. In a word (my noble Lord) I shall not forget what you haue made mee, nor the dutie enioyn'd me by it: [Page]I will pray for you, for your Lady, for your little Ones, and for the growth, and con­tinuance of the house begun in you; and what else is requir'd in a religious obser­uance, you shall surely find in the faith and loyaltie of

Your Lordships humble seruant, Hum. Sydenham.

The seuerall Texts, and names of the Sermons herein contained.

I. The Royall Passing-Bell: or Dauids Summons to the Graue.

The Text. PSAL. 32.6.

Thou hast made my dayes as a span-long, and mine Age is nothing before thee; Surely, euery man, in his best state is altogether vanitie.

II. The Rich mans Warning Peece.

The Text. PSAL. 62.10.

If Riches increase, set not thy heart vpon them.

III. Waters of Marah and Meribah, or the sower of Bitternesse, and Strife, Sweetned and Allayed.

The Text. ROM 12.1.

I beseech you, Brethren, by the mercies of God, to of­fer vp your Bodies, a liuing Sacrifice, Holy, ac­ceptable to God which is your reasonable seruice.


TEXT. Psal. 39. v. 6.

Thou hast made my dayes as a span-long and mine Age is as nothing before thee; surely, euery man, in his best state, is altogether vanitie.

THE Text is a sad Story of man's frailtie here; And 'tis a Prophet's, and a King's; a King, as mightie in Religion, as in valour; one that knew as well how to tune his sor­rowes, as his triumphs, and had of­ten warbled sweetly to them both, and sung many a dainty Antheme in his Israell; so that, here wants neither eloquence, nor state; nothing that may per­swade an auditorie, or awe it. I need not begge then either your patience or attention; the one is enioyn'd you from a Prophet, the other from a King; a good [Page 2] Prophet, and a King, Dauid, the King, and the Pro­phet after Gods owne heart; whose words here are are as Compact, as they are powerfull, so ioynted and knit together in one piece (a piece so vniforme, and exact) that should I disranke or sunder them, I must either deface this beautie, or destroy it. I take them then as I first found them in their rich pyle and fabricke; whereln I haue obserued three stories or ascents.

1 Dayes in the first; and these dayes measured, and in that measure, resembled Instar pugilli; as a span-length; and this length, punctnall, and prefixt, not al­terable by any power of man; for in posuisti, thou hast made it so.

2 In the next; these Dayes, are an Age; and this Age; weigh'd and compar'd, fals light in the scale, tan­quam nihil, as nothing; not absolutely nothing, but comparatiuely, Ante te, before thee.

3 In the third; these Dayes, and this Age, are man's; not man's in his Autumne, or declination, but in his best state; and man thus in his best state is but vani­tie; no peice-meale vanitie; but omnimoda vanitas, altogether vanitie; man is altogether vanitie; man is so; not man in particular, this man, only; not I, Da­uid, the Prophet, or the King; but vniuersus homo, euery man; as well the Begger as the King, or the Pro­phet; all mand-kinde; euery man; euery man, in his best state, is altogether vanitie.

Thus I haue shew'd you the front of the Text, and what it promise's in the rooms within; if not so fully as you expect, or desire, please you to take a review; and then you may see, more at large; Dayes, in the [Page 3]first part; these dayes, proportion'd; who did it: and how: and all this in a Tu posuisti, thou hast made them; and thou hast so made them that they are as a span-long; there I beginne. Thou hast make my dayes as a span-long.

A span-long.

TO weigh the miserie of things transitory,Pars prima. with the glory of others more permanent and so­lid, is the most exact way to iudge of either; the life of opposites is in Comparing them, when the good seeme better; and the bad worse. Our Pro­phet therefore, in a deepe speculation of the Almigh­ty, and the fraile rarities of his creatures here below, looking vp at length to the beautie of the Celestiall hoast, Sunne, moone, and starres, brings vp man vnto to them; not to riuall their perfection, but to question his; and, after some stand, and pause, in steed of Comparison, makes an enquiry; a double one; first, what man is? and then, what is the sonne of man? in his eighth Psalme, the fourth verse.

Here is Homo, and filius hominis, and both, in the text, haue their energia, and weight of emphasis. The word enosc, or enosh, translated, man, sign fles mise­rum & calamitosum hominem (saith Musculus) a man of calamitie, and sorrow;Musc. in Psal. 8.4. and ' [...] giu [...]n to all men as a remembrance of their mortality; so Psal. 9.20. Let the Heathens know that they bee Enose, men, mortall men. Moreouer, sonne of man, hath in the roote. A­dam; vt primae originis admoneamur, Musc. ibid. to minde vs of our carnall pedigree; and that our source and of­spring is but Adamah, and so all man-kinde, earthie. And therefore some translations, following closely [Page 4]the tracke of the originall,Aynsworth. Psal. 8.4. read thus; what is sorry man that thou remembrest him, and the sonne of Adam, that thou visitest him? not what is man, that rare creature indued with wisedome, and vnderstanding, the Almightie's Master-piece, the Image of his maker, and modell of the vniuerse? But, what is Enose? what is Adam? What, the sonne of calami­tie and sorrow? the sonne of earth and frailite? what is he? nay what is he not? what not of calamitie and earth? insomuch that the patient man, vnder the groane and sense of humane imperfections, and the dayly bruise of his manifold affliction, is driuen to his expostulation also, with a quid est homo,? what is man? Iob. 7.17. where we meet againe with the word Enosc, misellus homo, wretched man; and not nakedly the word, but a particle ioyn'd with it, not mah, Bolduc. in Cap. Iob. 17. but mi, (as Bolducus obserues) non quis, sed quid quaerere intendens, as if the enquiry look't not to the person, but his condition; not, who is man? but what he is? knowing that man is not only the con­crete, miserable; but, the very abstract misery it selfe; such a misery as may bee an example, and president of all others. And, if we but obserue the criticismes and curiosities of expositours vpon the word man, they are neither impertinent nor fruitlesse; for wee shall neuer meet it through the whole current of sa­cred Story without some descant and paraphrase from the Hebrew. To particular in that of Esay, where (in one text) words of opposite signification maske vnder a single antithesis, as in the fifth of that Prophesie, Bolduc. in cap. 4. Iob. 17. Incuruabitur homo, & humiliabitur vir, man shall be brought downe, and man shall be humbled. Homo, there, is in the originall, Adam, quod nomen [Page 5]infirmitatis est, a name of crazines and languish­ment. Vir, Ise, or Ish, Heroem, magnum (que) importans, which inuolues something of eminence, & renowne; and so our new translation giues it,Esa. 5. the meane man shall bee brought downe, and the mighty man shall bee humbled; so that let man bee of what condition or estate soeuer, hee shall not bee long in it, without a bringing downe, or an humbling. If he be Isc, mighty in possession and name; humiliabitur, he shal be hum­bled; if he be Adam, of course and popular condi­tion, and so humble already, yet he must be lower, incuruabitur, hee shall bee brought downe; brought downe and humbled with a witnesse, ad infernum, sayes the Text, euen vnto Hell. Aperit infernus os suum, the 16. verse of that Chapter. Esa. 5 16. But Hell is the misety of another Age; our Text hath little to doe with that, and so this place makes not for our pur­pose; but, the word Sheol will befriend vs here, and make this infernum, a graue, too, and thither we are humbled euery day; and then we aske no­more Quis? or quid est homo? who, or what is man? but, Vbi homo? where is man? Iob. 14.10. for so the pensiue man interrogates; man wasteth away, and giueth vp the ghost, and where is he? Iob. 14.10. where is hee? fuit, non vixit, he was here but now, but he is gone; gone from his Caluary to his Golgotha; his gall & vinegar in his late agonie (the bitter Crosse of his body) to his sepulchre (here) he wed out of the rocke;He was buried in a vault. his bed ready made for him in the darke, where hee lie's downe, and rises not, till this fuit hath put on a re­surrexit, this mortalitie, a resurrection. And, seeing he is now gone, let vs no more aske, Quis? aut vbi? [Page 6]who, or where man is? but once more, quid est what he is? or rather, what his Age is? or (if you please) what his dayes in that age? and then the text will answere by way of similitude and resemblance, Instar pugilli, as a span-long. A short time (no doubt) that is inch't out, or singred by the span; other things remark't in holy story, haue their dimensions lin'd­out by the farhome, or the cubit, or the foot, at least; nothing that I remember, by this fraile measure, but the life of man; a thing so fragile and momentany, that there was nothing to expresse it, but a span; a word so tumbled by Expositours, that they are somewhat driuen to the plundge, to giue the origi­nall of it a proper signification in a second language, and therefore some translations haue it instar pugil­li; or, ad mensuram pugillorum, a little handfull; so Felix, and Musculus; others ad mensuram quatuor digitorum, or palmi minoris longitudinem; the breadth of foure fingers, or small inches; so Pagnine, and Tigurina; and neere these, Iunius and Mollerus palmares posuisti dies thou hast made my dayes as a hand-breath. The word of the Septuagint, is [...], which the vulgar Latine read's mensurabi­les; and Hierome, Vide Musculum in Psal 39.6. Breues something that is measu­rable, and therefore, short. For, though the age of man, in holy writt, weare's sometimes the attribute of dayes; sometimes, of moneths; sometimes, of yeares; yet these dayes, and moneths, and yeares are not without their fraile Epithets of, vani, or, breues, or the like; so Iob is said to possesse many moneths; but they are menses vanitatis, moneths of vanitie, Iob. 7.2. & not only moneths, but yeares also; [Page 7]but these years are anni pancissimi; or breues anni, few yeares, and short Iob. 16.12. Howeuer, suppose these yeares were multiplied, and lengthned somewhat in their span, yet they are short still, because numbred.Pineda in Iob 16.22. And therefore the Latine version here, breues annos, the Hebrew reads annos numerari; and the Septuagint, annos dinumeratos, yeares to be numbred, or yeares already numbred, and not only numbred, but pre­fixt; and not prefixt barely, but circumscrib'd; circumscrib'd by the finger of the Almightie; and that in a narrow circuite, this span-long; so Iob say's, man's dayes are determined, and his moneths are with thee; thou hast appointed his bounds that hee cannot passe, Iob 14.5. Insomuch that dayes,Bolducus in cap. 16. Iob. v. 23. Pined. ibid. or moneths determined are but short; and short dayes and mo­neths, the Hebrewes call dies numeri, and menses nu­meri; dayes, and moneths of number quia pauci, & numerabiles (saith Pineda) because they are nume­rable, and therefore few. Neither are dayes only, and moneths, and yeares so stil'd, but the men of those dayes, and moneths, and yeares; so in the twelfth of Ezekiel, Ezech. 12. v. 16, 17. the Prophet speaking of the desolation of the Iewes, sayes, that God will scatter them amongst the Nations, and disperse them in their Countrey, but would leaue of them homines paucos à gladio, & à fame, some few of them, that is, homines numeri, some few that hee had selected and numbred, these he would reserue from the sword, the pestilence and the famine, that they might declare all their abho­minations amongst the Heathens, whether they came, that they might know that hee is the Lord their God.

Thus, measure, or number, of times, or seasons, in what proportion soeuer, presuppose a kinde of rottennesse and instabilitie; so our moneths are num­bred, and our dayes measur'd,Pineda in cap. 14. Iob. v. 5. Iob 14.5. that is, short. The Latine word there, is praecisi, (according to Tremeluis) decurtati, others; curtail'd and contra­cted; from the originall, Charats; which signitieth, acuere, or, praescindere; to sharpen, or cut off. So, the lostie Prophet, assuring to a remnant of Israel, their safctie form the Assirians, tell's them of a con­summatio praecisa, in the mid'st of the Land. A con­sumption decreed, Esay 10.22. the English saye's, but that ren­dring is to narrow, and will not beare vp with the latitude of the originall, and therefore not, a con­sumption; for, that linger's too much; but rather, a consummation; a precise one; such a one as ar­gues both a certaintie, and quicknesse in the doing; so quicke and certaine, as if it were done, 'ere it be­gan; and, acted, as soone as prophesied; so Ioel also call's the valley of Iehosophat, Pin. in cap. 4. Iob. vallis concisionis; mul­titudes, multitudes in the valley of concision; that is, vallis abreuiationis; or, vallis praecisionis; the val­ley of abreuiation, or cutting off; because that the vast multitude of people there met, should bee rari­fi'd, and lessen'd;Ioel 3.14. and only a few number of the Iust selected. In like sort, the dayes of man, here, may be called dies concisionis, or dies praecisi, because they are abreuiated maimed, cut off, determined, & straight­ned to a prescript time; a strict measure; this span-long, which man can neither diminish, nor dilate in his owne power; but hee is pent vp, here, in his nar­row Royaltie; his fraile inclosure, where his dayes [Page 9]are spanned out, his pillars pitch't; his non vltra li­mited; his circuits bounded; & tu posuisti terminos, and thou (O God) hast appointed those bounds, & tu posuisti dies, and thou hast made those dayes; so made them, that thou hast measured them; mea­sured them, exactly; by a span; a narrow span, which he shall neither fall short of, nor exceed, no not one tittle or punctum of it; not the breadth of the smal­lest haire, or atome; no, not the rare-spun gothsimere; or any other extenuated or imaginarie thinnesse whatsoeuer. For tu constituisti, and, tu posuisti, thou hast appointed, and thou hast made it so:Iob. 14.5. Psal 33. 6 and what­soeuer is thy appointment, is thy Law; a Law not to be corrupted, or minced, or disanull'd, either by e­quiuocation, or partialitie, or rigour, or any other iuggling or imposture of flesh and bloud. There is none (saith Iob) that can deliuer out of thy hand. Sta­tuta eius fecisti, & non praeteribit, Iob 10.7. Lat. Interp. in 10. cap. Iob. v. 20.21. Prou. 8. v. 24. thou hast appointed man his bounds that he cannot passe, statutes which he cānot violate certain chanels & banks in thy decrees, which he cannot possibly exceed. And as thou hast established the clouds, and strengthned the fountaines of the deepe, bound vp the flouds from ouerflowing, and giuen them thy command that they shall not passe, but placed the sand as a wall about them by a perpetuall Decree; and though the waues thereof toss themselues, Ier. 5.22. yet can they not preuaile, though they roare, yet can they not swell ouer; so all those tossing; and swel­lings of flesh and bloud the surges and billowes ri­sing in the tempests of our life,Iob. 38.10, 11. haue their cliffes and shoares, & strict limits, and God hath done to them, as to the great deepe, brake vp for them his decreed place, and set barres and doores, and said, hither you [Page 10]shall come, no further; here shall your proud waues stay: for tu posuisti dies, thou hast made our dayes, and those dayes but a span-long & tu constituisti ter­minos, thou hast appointed our bounds, and those bounds wee shall not passe.Pineda in cap. 14. Iob. And therefore the affli­cted man seeme's to complaine of the Almightie, that hee had inuironed him, terminis suis, with his bounds; that is, praeceptis suo, & statutis, with his precepts, and his statute; such orecep saud statutes, as he cannot abrogate; so in the eight of the Prouerbs 29. the Wiseman speaking of the mightie prouidence of God in ruling and ordering the vast deepe, sayes Iegem ponebat aquis, hee gaue the waters a law, or a decree, that they should not passe his command, and yet the singer of Israel call's this very law, a bound, thou hast set a bound that they cannot passe, Psal. 104 9 so that, that terminus, or bound was a law to them; and this lex, or decree, a bound to vs; and neither this bound, nor law, to be ouer-past; and therefore we find it once againe spoken of in the 148. Psalme, and there is a non praeteribit, to it; it shall not passe away, passe away? No, not one iot, or tittle of it. Heauen and earth shall first passe away, before one iot or tittle, ei­ther of Gods Word or Law, his posuit, or his constituit, his bound, or his span-long, which are a law to him; a law irreuocable, both in matters of life, and death. And therefore this necessitie of fate, Saint Paul ex­presseth, by the name of a law, with a statutum est, and a semel statutum est, it is appointed to man to die, and it is once appointed. Statutum est there is the law, or the decree, and the semel once, sayes, that this law is firme, constant, inviolable; for God speake's [Page 11]once, and he speake's but once,Pinedain cap. Iob. vt iterato pracepto opus non sit, saith Pineda, that we should not expect any iteration or doubling of his command. And therefore in the seuenteenth of the Acts, we haue, though not this statutum est, the law punctually set downe, yet wee haue the statuta tempora, the times prefixt for the execution of that law; so the text, God hath made of one bloud all the nations of men, and hath determined the times before appointed and the bounds of their habitation, which they cannot passe, the six and twentieth verse of that Chapter. And least we should thinke times determined to be no law, our death, which is a thing determined, and to a time determined, is call'd, a Testament, or, a Law. Remember that death will not bee long, in comming, and that the Couenant or Law of the graue, is not shewed vnto thee. Ecclus 14.12.

So that this businesse of death and the graue, is a law certaine, and prefixt, both for the time and man­ner, and that beyond all possibilitie of alteration; and therefore whether we stile it a decree, or a sta­tute, or a law, or a testament, or a bound, Pin. ibid. or this span-long, Semper dicis aliquid quod praeteriri non pote­rit, sayes the Iesuite, there is something inuolu'd that is both constant and inuiolable; whose ram­piers, and walls, and bulwarkes, thou shalt neuer scale nor digge through; for 'tis the Almighties Ci­tadell and strong fort, so garrison'd and intrencht by his eternall power, and wisdome; the doores and gates of it so barrocade'd, and blockt-vp against all inuasions of flesh and bloud, that no earthly strata­gem, no temporall assault, no humane policie, [Page 12]shall euer raze or demolish; but it stand's vnshooke, against all tempests; firme, against all batteries; so­lid, against all vnderminings; so that if the flouds rise, and the windes blow, and the waues beat, they shall neuer stagger it.

Seeing then there is a Statutum est past vpon all mankinde, that it must once die (and that statute is not rough, though it be sometimes vnpleasing, to die once, so wee die no more, for a double death is our due, though not our pay) and knowing that there are precise bounds, and limits, and span-longs to flesh and bloud, beyond which it cannot passe, and these bounds, and spans, and limits haue the Inscription of Gods vnalterable Decree, with the authoritie of his stampe and seale, his posuit, and his constituit, let vs take vp the prayer here of our Psalmist. Aug. in Psal. 38. Lord make me to know mine end, and the number of my dayes, what it is; the number, what it is? & est, & non est, saith Saint Augustine.

The measure of our dayes you haue had in an ex­act proportion, in this span-long; but the number of them,Aug ibid. is both secret, and vncertaine: it is and it is not, truly. Nec esse possumus dicere, quod nòn stat, nèc nòn esse, quod venit, & transit, saye's the father, we cannot properly say that that is which remaynes not, nor that is not, which comes and goes. Dayes past, and future, are as no dayes. Yesterday, was; and to morrow, will be; and so, now, are not; and of such things as are not, there is no number, to-day, only, is man's; and this not long his, neither; for it is going; or if it did not goe, it is but one day, and of that, there is no number, neither; so that the totall here, [Page 13] aut nòn est, aut quasi est, is either no number at all, or,Aug. vt supra. as it were, a number. Summe vp all the minutes and houres thou canst, and those, truly, and thine owne; thou shalt make vp but one day, and that day (wholly) not thine owne neither. Let's begin from the first dawne, or houre of it; where is that houre, saith the father? 'tis gone, where is the second then? perchance thou wilt say that's gone too; but, the third (doubtlesse) thou enioy'st; that's thine owne;Aug. ibid. be it so; and yet si tertiam dabis, non diem, sed horam dabis. Doest thou talke then of number, that hast but a day, or of a day, that hast but one houre? an houre? not that neither, not that very houre thou think'st thou enioy'st; for, if some part of it bee now past, and another as yet remayning; and of that which is past thou can'st not dispose, because it is not now; nor, of that which remaynes, because it is not yet, what canst thou giue of this houre? or if thou giuest, what i'st of thine owne thou giuest? the Father is at a stand, here; and in steed of a resolution put's a quaere. Cui committam hoc verbum, vt dicam, Est? what shall I doe with the word. Est (saith hee?) 'tis but one syllable, and one moment, and three letters in that syllable, and moment. Wee cannot come to the second, but by the first, nor to the third, but by the second; and then quid mihi de hac vna syllaba da­bis? & tenes dies, qui vnam syllabam non tenes? doe we talke of yeares, and moneths, and dayes, and houres, when wee cannot giue an account of one syllable? not of one letter of it? Away then with this vaine credulitie, this fond assurance of our setled planta­tion here below; momentis transuolantibus cuncta [Page 14]rapiuntur, all things are snatcht away in moments; moments that haue wings, and no seete; momentis transuolantibus, moments that flie away, as if they were affraid of mortality, or loath to assist it. And yet, behold, our tents here are not so thinnly built, but they will endure the blasts (or breathings ra­ther) of a few dayes, a few dayes (indeed) that are spann'd-out; and when these are gone, Lord, what are we? surely, euen as nothing; as nothing before thee: so the Prophet in the words following Mine Age is as nothing before thee.

Mine Age is as nothing before thee.

Mine Age, &c.

IVstinian reads it vitamea; Pars secunda. auum meum. vulg. lat: Jun. & Trem. Musc. in Psal. 39. Aynsworth. in Psal. 39. 1. Cor. 7.31. Pagnine, tempus meum, my life, and my time; the two Fathers, Hierome and Augustine (following the Greeke) substantia mea my substance; the Caldee (not much vnlike) Corpus meam, my body; but, the Hebrew word, Cheled, signifies, the World, Psal. 17.14. vsed here, for mans life or Age, or time in the world; so that, as the fa­shion of this greater world passeth away, saith the Apostle, so doth the body and substance of the lesser; insomuch that this whole pilgrimage on earth, is but as nothing (most translations reading here vt nihil, or tanquam nihil) and though some bee so mercifull in their rendrings,Aeuum meum eoram te est, ac sinon essot. Musc. Aeuum meum ac si nibil esset ante te, Molcrus. as to make mans Age a something, yet that hath but an Est, acsi non esset: or els an Ac, with a si nibil esset: so that I finde little difference in the readings, the one making mans age as nothing; the other, a something, as if it were not. But suppose it were a something, indeed, such an age [Page 15]as had a stabilitie both of dayes and yeeres, and these not spann'd so narrowly, but they might climbe vp to the miracle of a thousand yeeres, yet this huge masse of time is little better then the tanquam nihil in the Text, as nothing before thee, such a nothing, as is resembled to the decursion and sticklenes of one day, not a day present, but already spent, A yesterday, Psal. 90.4. a yesterday that is past. A thousand yeeres in thy eyes are but as yesterday that is past, or as a wacth in the night. Psal. 90.4.

Had our Prophet resembled it to a day, such a day as we enioy; this day, or, one houre of this day; or one minute of this houre; or, one moment, or ictus of that minute, wee might haue presupposed some stabilitie, though short-breathd, and panting, in the course of mans age; but, to a day, a day languish't, and consum'd; to yesterday, to yesterday expird; how doth it whisper our frailty? how our transitorinesse? not such a frailtie, and transitorinesse, as shall here­after fade and wither, but a rotten transitorinesse, a putrisied frailty; a yesterdayes frailtie and transito­rinesse; a yesterday that is worme-eaten and dustie; a yesterday that is past. The naturall man then look't not home to the brittlenesse of our constitution, when he styl'd Man a creature of a day; [...]. Arist. Iob. 8.9. nor the righ­teous man, when hee cloathed him with an hester­ni sumus, we are but as yester day, Iob 8.9. but, the man after Gods owne heart (whose knowledge was as pure as his integritie) he displayes him at the full, when he makes his Age, a season obsolete; Psal. 90.4. a Calender out of date; a yesterday that is past.

And therefore in a deepe contemplation of our [Page 16]mortalitie (bottoming and sounding (as it were) all humane wretchednesse) hee opens the fleetnesse of his age by a nihil, here, a nihil (I confesse) with a tanquam to it, Mine Age is as nothing before thee: as nothing (indeed) before thee; thy Omnipotencie, thy Infinitenesse; before these, as nothing. For, if a thou­sand yeeres to thee bee but as yester day, must bee nothing to thy thousand; thy thousand thou­sands; thy myriades of thousands, thy eternitie; thy euerlastingnesse. And therefore, my Age, or, my substance, is a tanquam nihil ante te, Ante te, qui vides hoc (Saint Augustine eccho's) & cum hoc video, ante te video, ante te homines non video. I confesse, that it is nothing that I am, in respect of him; that is, ante te domine, ante te; vbi oculi tui sunt, non vbi oculi hu­mani sunt; Aug. in Psal. so the Father warble's. To a blemisht or a deluded eye (and such a one is a mortall eye) my age may be something; a something of some few dimensions, a span-long, and yet this is but a tanquam nihil, a tanquam nihil, vnto man, too; as nothing be­fore him: but to thee; to thy eyes (which are brigh­ter then those beames, which dazzle mine) those eyes, substantia mea, purè nihil; no tanquam, there; mine age is nothing; purely nothing, there. No­thing? why? vniuersa vanitas omnis homo, euery man is vanity; such a vanity as is stol'n-by; or els, now going; as, yester day; or, as a watch in the night. And, these haue their tanquam nihil, too; are as no­thing before thee; so truly nothing, that they make not vp an Age, or a day, but some few houres; e­nough to make vp the watch of a night; no more. [Page 17]But suppose this tanquam nihil beaten out to the perfection of an Age; and that age, threescore and teu: this, trodden on to an hundred; that trebled­vp to Nestors; and his, to Methusalah's; yet all these would not make vp our number of a thousand; and so, in God's eyes, would be lesse then a day; then a day that is past. Than a day? one night; nay, one poore watch in that night; a watch of some three houres-space, that's all. For the Iewes deuided their day into twelue houres, and subdiuided their night into foure watches, and euery watch, three houres.1. Euening. 2. Midnight. 3. Cock-crow­ing 4. Dawne. Mare. 13.35. Math. 14.13. A goodly monarchhie, of flesh and bloud; a spacious; souerainty (no doubt) both in power and time; a Reigne of some three houres; three houres of a night too, not of a day; as though the time of our sway, and scepter, here, were attended meerely with ob­scurity and dulnesse, a sceane of heauinesse and slum­ber, such as are incident to this watch in the night. And, indeed, what is our life, but a very Watch? and the the time of it, but as the night season? wherein, by reason of the darkenesse that mantles, and o're­spreads it, wee grope in vncertenties and errours: the light wee haue of things is but weake and bor­rowed; a glimmering, or twinkling onely, no true light; and, rather a conceipt, and apprehension of what wee seeme to see, then an exactken or know­ledge of what wee should.

Moreouer, in this watch of ours, wee are apt to nod, and forget; forget, not onely that we are here at Sentinell; who set vs here; and the short time wee are at it, our three boures; but the strict charge of our Commander, and the danger of surprizall and [Page 18]defeat, by the inuasion of our powerfull Aduersary. But, night and frailtie (as what is our age but these?) are beauie-ey'd, and drowzie; and then, our three houres, are (perchance) no more a watch, but a dreame; And what is our age but a dreame too? a dreame of some three houres; and that's a long one (you will say) but, howeuer long, 'tis but a dreame; and, as a dreame, not long neither. But did I say, mans Age was a dreame? nay, rather, man, in that Age, Tob 20.8. a dreame. Hee flieth away, as a dreame, and is chased as a vision in the night. Iob. 20.8. So that, now, here is a dreame in a dreame, Ezechiels vision; a wheele in a wheele, this turne's in that, and yet, but one vi­sion, one dreame; or, if there be disparitie any where, 'tis in man; and he, the vainer dreame of the two.

Our life (you know) hath beene call'd a shadow; and not only a shadow, but a vaine shadow, in which man is said to walke; He walketh in a vaine shadow, in the seuenth verse of this Psalme; And not only walke's in it, but dreame's in it; so dreame's in it, that he is of it, too; and therefore the Heathen call's him vmbrae somnium, [...]. Pindar. the dreame of a shadow; and what is that, but the shadow of a shadow? for there is no­thing so truly a shadow, as a dreame, in which (often­times) there are strange obiects presented to the phantasie, whereof in nature, and true being, there is not so much, as a resemblance, no, not a shadow; and yet, euen these so captiue and shackle the whole man, that (according to the varietie of species offered) they take vs, either with delight, or horror; some­times commanding our sigh, our groane, our teare; sometime, our eleuation of spirits; our applause, our [Page 19]laughter; euen then, when our out ward senses seeme fetter'd and chain'd-vp in the bands of sleepe; and all this was but the Fisher-man's dreame in Theoeri­tus, whose Golden Bootie vanisht with his dreame, and hee awak's at length to himselfe, and his olde wants gull'd with an apparition and shadow of that substance, of which he now find's there was neither shadow, nor substance, truly, but, a dreame of both.

Againe, Dreames are the true Hieroglyphicks of our mortall state, in which the whole passages of our life, are either prophesied, or acted; and that, much to the complexion, or qualitie of humours in him that dreameth. Sometimes, they are ambitious; and then we thinke we are vpon the tops of hils, or mountaines; now on Basan, then, on Libanus; where (for our pride and loftinesse) wee are called Oakes, and Cedars; sometimes they are more humble, and deiected, and then wee grouell in bottomes, and in vallies; where, for our low estate, wee are call'd shrubs and hysop; sometimes they are presumptuous, and then we are at the fall of a steepe Cliffe, or Rocke; sometimes, they are desperate, and then we are at the quick-sand, or the gulfe; sometimes, they are vain­glorious, and then we are at the battlement, or pinna­cle of the Temple; sometimes they are pusillanimous and fearefull; and then we are at the roaring, or swal­lowing of the great deepe; sometimes they insi­nuate a kinde of auspice and blest abundance, and then we tumble in Arabian spices, gold of Ophir, Indian Diamonds; but this (for the most part) is a very dreame, such a one, as our phantasie tell's vs, in our dreame, is a dreame indeed; sometimes againe, they [Page 20]are Ominous, and then ghastly apparitions, and feare­full shreekes startle and affright vs; Galbas halter, or knife, or poyson, or some other Engine of bloud and death more horrid; lastly, sometimes they are fatall, and then we dreame that we haue feet of clay; walke in a Caemeterium, or a Golgotha, tread amongst tombes, or dead mens bones, stumble at a Coffin, or (perchance) a greene medow, and that (they say) is an infallible praediction of mortalitie; I know not whether a medow be, I am sure grasse, or a flower is; or, if not a prediction, at least, an embleme. All flesh is grasse, Esay 40 6. and the beautie thereof as the flower of the field, the grasse withereth, and the flower fadeth, Esay 40.6.

Marke, the substance of flesh and bloud (here) is but grasse, such grasse as withereth, and the beau­tie of that substance, as a flower, such a flower, as is open to all tempests, a flower of the field: and that flower of the field which fadeth too. Here is nothing but withering, and fading, no time of flourishing, as if man were a piece meerely of declination, and wa­sted before he grew. And yet loe, he groweth, and he flourisheth too, but it is for a day only; a day? nay. the first part of that day, the morning; so sayes our Psalmist.Psal. 90.6. In the morning be flourisheth, and groweth vp, Psal. 90.6. That's well; here is man, and the glory of man; he groweth, and he flourisheth; and all this is in the morning; But what followes this mor­ning, and this growth, and this flourishing? surely, a ripenesse, a sickle, and a haruest; an euening, a cut­ting-downe, and a withering. In the euening he is cut downe, and withereth, the same verse, of the same Psalme.

But, hath all slesh and bloud (the grasse here men­tioned) a time of growing vp 'ere it be cut downe? a flourishing before it wither's? wee reade of grasse, that wither's before it growes; before it growes vp, vp to any ripenesse, or perfection; and this the Psal­mist call's grasse on the house top, Psal. 129.6, 7.Psal. 119.6, 7. So thinly growne, that the mower, filleth not his hand, nor he that bindeth vp fheaues, his bosome. Oh, that the Top of a house, the maine beame, and rafters of a Family, the chiefe buttresse, and pillar of a name, should bee so barren, the fruit of it so soone fade, when those that are nearer earth, take better roote. But loe; Hee grew so thinly vp, that there is not so much left of him, as to fill a hand, not to make vp this span-long, in the text, no not this tanquam nibil; He withered before he grew-vp; wee had him only in the morning, in the blooming of youth, when the Damaske and the Lilly daunc'd in the cheeke: Before his noone, he is reapt away, and his sheafe bound-vp, and now he is gone, gone like the day you heard of, the yesterday, or the watch, or the shadow, or the dreame, or the grasse, or the fraile flower, nothing remayning, but the memory, that Hee was; And why? Vniuersa vanitas omnis home; surely, man is vanitie; euerie man is vanitie; euery man, in his best state is vanitie; euery man, in his best state, is alto­gether vanitie. So the words runne in the next part. Euery man in his best state is altogether vanitie.

Euerie man in his,Parstertia. &c.

THe translations (here) runne diuersly; so doe the faucies on them. Vniuersa vanitas omnis [Page 22]homo; August. Musculus. Mollerus. Iun. Trem. in locuin. so, Saint Augustine; omnis vanitas vniuer­sus homo; so Musculus; mera vanitas omnis homo; so Mollerus; and omnimoda vanitas omnis homo; so, Iunius and Tremelius. Euery Translation is dou­ble-strung, and harp's altogether on the plurall. The Prophet sayes not, I am vaine, or man is vaine, or, man is vanitie; nor that men are vaine, or vani­tie; but the whole series, Aynsworth in Psal. 39. and descent come within the chorus; Euerie man is vanitie; nay, euery man is euerie vanitie; all mankind, all manner of vanitie; so the Root, All Adam, all Hebeb, all mankind, all vanitie. There is nothing within the round of this little world, the whole circuit of flesh and bloud, (who­soeuer, whatsoeuer, or how great soeuer) but it is vaine, Bolduc. in cap. 11. Ioh. v. 11. vanitie, all vanitie. And therefore some Com­mentators (perusing that of the eleuenth of Iob, vers. 11. God knoweth vaine man) reade it nouit Deus ho­minum vanitatem, God knoweth the vanitie of men: or, as others, more nimbly, nouit Deus homi­nes vanitatis; God knoweth the men of vanitie. So, Saint Augustine, paraphrasing on that of the Preacher, Eccles. 1. Vanitie of vanities, all is vanitie. will not reade the words,Aug. lib de vera Religione cap. 21. Vanitas vanitatum, but vanitas vanitantium, as if men made the vanitie, and not vanitie the men, so. Ne (que) frustra additum est vanitantium, (saith the Father,) quia si vanitantes detrahas, non eritcorpus vanitas, sed in suo genere, quamuis extremam pulchritudinem, sine vllo errore remonstrabit, in his Booke, de ver a Religione, cap. 21. And, indeed, we too much iniure and disparage, not only the times we liue in, but also, those of our Pre­decessours, crying out on the vanitie of either, when [Page 23]the Stoyicke tels vs, hominum sunt ista, Sen. Epist. 56. non tempo­rum; the vanitie is in the man, and not in the Age; or, if it were there, and the vanitie of all creatures within it, man would ingrosse it all; so, the same Saint Augustine, expounding the Apostles,Aug. in cap. 8. Ro. cap. 53. vanitati sub­iecta est creatura, the creature is subiect vnto vanitie, Rom. 8. First, put's all vanitie into the creature, and then; all creatures into man, and that without the least calumnie, or, iniustice (so he professes) omnem crea­turam in ipso homine, sine vlla calumnia cogitemus, in his tract vpon the Romans, cap. 13. And, indeed, it was iust, that he who had the glory of all creatures, whil'st he stood cloathed in his integritie, should haue all their frailtie, too, when hee was disrob'd; and so it fell out at length; that hee that was the occasion of all vanitie, man, was all vanitie himselfe.Verse 4. There was a time, when he was but like vnto it, Man is like vnto vanitie, Psal. 144. now He is vanitie it selfe, 'tis his essentiall, and proper qualitie; not in part, or resemblance only, but, altogether vanitie; man is al­together vanitie. And what is that?Aug. in Psal. 38. Totum hoc quod transit vanitas dicitur. Euerie transitorinesse is a vani­tie; That which reside's not, we call vaine, because it vanisheth; so doth a vapour, we say, or a smoake, and man is both; and therefore a vanitie, and a va­nitie; or, (if you please) once more, a vanitie of va­nities; for that which the Septuagint read's so in their [...]; Hierome, and others would haue read [...], vapor fumi, and, aurea tenuis, the vapour of a smoake, or, a thinne aire; Hebel, a soone vanishing vapour, as the breath of ones mouth, or nostrils; so Viues note's vpon the Father, in his [Page 24]twentieth, De Ciuitate Dei, cap. 3. T'is true then, whatsoeuer vanisheth, we call vanitie; and man, that vanisht vanitie; insomuch that hee seeme's to bee a fraile creature, indeed; some what lesse then vanitie, or beyond it.Psal 109.23. And therefore our Prophet doth not only compare him to a shadow (which must as a sha­dow vanish) but to that shadow, when it declineth, Psal. 109.23. and it seemes this is not enough neither, and therefore,Psal 102.12. Psal. 102.12. Dies mei similes vmbrae declinatae; I am gone ae a shadow declin'd. He is gone, and declin'd, not declining, as if his passage were ra­ther coniectur'd then discern'd. And therefore, in Scripture, we seldome finde man's Age resembled to a shadow, but there is a fugit with it, fugit velut vm­bra. Iob. Iob 14.12. 14.12. Hee sties as a shadow; flie's with a nimble wing; so nimbly, that sometimes Hee out­doe's the acutenesse of our sight; I be held him (say's Dauid) and hee was gone, Psal 37.37. I sought him, and hee was no where to be found; so also, dies nostri, quasi vmbrae super terram, 1. Chron. 29.15. & nulla est mora, 1. Chron. 29.15. Our dayes are as a shadow vpon earth, and there is no stay; they passe along; nay, they flie; flie so swift­ly, that they are gone, when we thinke them going, like a gasping coale, which in one Act, glare's, and dye's; or the rude salutations of fire and powder, which but meet, and part; touch, and consume. And, indeed (if we but obserue) a shadow is not so proper a resemblance of our life, as of our death; or, rather, something betweene both. T'is an vnequall mixture of light and darknesse; or rather, a light mask't, or vayl'd-vp in darknesse, so that, the greater part must be obscuritie; and that resemble's death; what re­mayne's of light, is screen'd and intercepted, and so [Page 25]look's but dimly towards life. Euerie shadow is an im­perfect night, and euery night, a metaphoricall death. Sleepe and Death haue beene long since call'd two si­sters; and Night, the mother of them both. Moreo­uer, as euery shadow is an imperfect night, so euery life is an imperfect death. The greater the shadow is, the nearer vnto night, and so is the life protract'd, vnto death. And therefore our Prophet knowing that his earthly Tent was a little wind-shooke, and obnoxious to daily ruine, wil haue his age emblem'd by a shadow that is declin'd, ad occasum vergens, In Psal. 102.12. & 109.23. & in tenebras euanescens, saith Muscuius; hastning to darknesse, and the night, and that night, death. When the Sunne is in the Meridian, and the beames of it perpendicular to our bodies, shadowes change not suddenly, but when it begin's to decline to the fall, euery moment, almost, they vary; and therefore his dayes are velut vmbrainclinata, seu serotina, Museul. ibid. as an euening shadow which decline's with the Sunne, and so set's. For, though shadowes appeare larger, when the Sunne is neere the fall, yet that greatnesse is not fatre from vanishing; vanitie (I should say) the va­nitie in the text (here) man; whose honours and triumphs, at the height, and, in his best state, are but as shadowes at noone; and his dayes, but as shadowes neere the set; nay, not so hopefull, for they returne againe with the Sunne; but man once set, riseth not, till the Sunne and Heauens shall be no more. Iob. 14.12. And twere well that only the time of mans life were vanitie, but his actions in that time are a wilder vanitie then the other. The Poets signified so much, when they set in combustion all Greece and Asia [Page 26]for a gaudie Apple; and all Troy and Greece, for a faire Curtizan; two daintie trifles to cause such bloudie agitations in States and Empires. What, but vanitie could haue proiected it? What but this, omnimoda vanitas, put it in execution? But, who knowes not, that most things arriue mankind, as they seeme, not as they are? As wee please to fancie them, not as they proue in their owne nature? And so wee are fool'd out of the truth, and realtie of things, by a vaine ap­prehension of what they are not; shewing one thing in the rinde, an externall appearance, another, in the core and internall essence; Sophistications, Impo­stures, Lies. And therefore the Prophet complaines on the sonnes of men, that they lou'd Vanitie, and followed after lies, Psal. 4.9. not only because all worldly allurements yeeld no true contentation, and felicitie, but because (in very deed) they tend either to equiuocation, or falshood; a deceiueable falshood (so the word Cozab signifie's) which is such a lie, Aynesworth. in Psal. 4.9. as deceiue's mens expectations; and therefore that which in the twelfth Psalme, verse 3. We trans­late deceitfull lips, according to the Hebrew, is false vanitie, or vaine falshood, the word Shau noting both vanitie of words, and deeds, and sometimes that which is false too. Here upon the Prophet Agur amongst other petitions he preferr'd to his God, his principall desire was, that hee would remoue from him, vanitie and lies, Pro. 30.8. And commonly they go hand in hand; for, whatsoeuer is vain must be false too; Insomuch that vnder the word vanitie, a lie pas­ses [Page 29]srequently in Scripture, or,Vide Pineda & Boldnc. in cap. 11. Iob 11. at least in the Exposi­tions on it: so in the eleuenth of Iob, what the vul­gar read's, hominum vanitatem, vanitie of men, Pag­nine call's homines mendaces, and Caietan, homines falsitatis, lying men, or, men of falshood;Pagn. Vatab. Caiet. in cap. 11. Job. 11. and Vata­blus, (vnwilling, as it seemes, to sunder vanitie from the lie) translate's both wayes, Nouit Deus quàm va­ni, & ne quàm homines. God knoweth how vaine and false men are; And therefore in the 62. Psal. 10. the Latine hath it, Mendaces homines in stateris, men are lyes in the ballance; the English, thus, men are vanitie in the ballance. And, indeed, the whole race of mankind come's within the verge of these two words; if they be of cheape and humble conditi­on, they are call'd Vanitie; if, of a more climing, high, and noble estate, a lie. Men of low degree are vanitie, and men of high degree are alye, Psal. 62.9.Aynsworth in Psal. 62.9. A lie, or a vanitie? nay, lighter then both; so that if they were laid in ballances together, they would mount vp, sayes the text; In ballances to mount vp, they together are lighter then vanitie; intimating,Psal. 62.10. that if all men were put together in one ballance, and this vanitie and lie, in another, the ballances would mount vp, and the frailtie in mans side. A prettie piece of aeyre, and leuitie, that vanitie should weigh-downe; or, alie; childhood, or wantonnesse, or folly, or igno­rance, are not so light; nay, not the leuitie of all these, woman.

The Locust, or the Grashopper (creatures of emp­tinesse and feare) are no greater slaues of the winde then he. Hee is tossed to and froas the Grashopper, and [Page 30]driuen away as the Locust, Aug. Iun. & Trem. Psal. 30. In imagine non in vmbra. Psal. 109.23. Thus, his whole life is but a tossing, or a driuing (types of insta­bilitie, and trouble) and these in a vaine way too; so our Psalmist, here; He walke's in a vaine Image (as if his life were rather suppositious, and imaginarie, then a life indeed) and in this, he is at no peace, but he disquieteth himselfe in vaine, or, (as some read it) in vanitie doth hee make a stirre; And what is the issue of this vaine tumult? He beapeth vp riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them, in the seuenth verse of this Psalme. Of all earthly vanities this is the most superlatiue; the omuimoda vanitas in the Text,Aug. de Temp. 49. in cap. 3. is not so vaine as this. Conturbaris, ô homo (saith Augustine) Vanè conturbaris; quare? the­saurizas; cui? nescis. A rare prouidence (no doubt) to treasure vp, I know not what, for I know not whom. The Scripture scarce afford's a fleeting at tribute to flesh and bloud, but Riches haue a share in it. Men are call'd vanities, so are Riches, shadowes, so are Riches; nothing, so are Ri­ches. Hearke, Mammonist, here is a vanitie, as well of Riches, Aug. ibid. as of men, and both these a shadow, and a no­thing. But suppose those riches firme, and solid; what then? Non infructuosè conturbaris, sed vanè contur­baris, (sayes the Father) perchance the trouble is not so fruitlesse; but, 'tis as vaine; vaine? Why? Thou knowest not who shall gather them; and, if thou knowest not that, why doest thou heape them vp? or, if thou do'st, tell me, for whom? thy selfe? dar'st thou say so, that art to die? thy issue, then? dar'st thou say so of those that shall? Magna pietas! the­saurizat [Page 31]pater filijs; imò, magna vanitas, thesaurizat moriturus, morituris; the Father, still, in his nine and fortieth Sermon, de Tompore.

But grant thy heapes inlarg'd; thy fortunes, pro­sperous; thy loynes, fruitfull, yet there is a moth and gangreene haunt's that estate that is purchased with too much solicitude, the heire of it, (often­time) subiect to a fit of improuidence, or luxurie, or pride, or folly, or else, that common feuer of lust, and riot; or (perchance) the palsie of a die, shake's out his posteritie into miserie, and want; and then Ille fluenào perdidit, quod tu laborando congregâsti; Aug. vt supra. what before was a dropsie, is now growne to a con­sumption, thy baser auarice, to a reproachfull penurie; and what thou hast long fed on, with the bread of carefulnesse, is at last brought to the bread of sarrow, to the leane cheeke, the hollow eyes, and the cleane teeth; and hee that was before the obiect of thy wretchednes, and poore anxietie, is now,He that by v­sury and vniust gaine increa­seth his sub­stance, he shall gather it for him that will pittie the poore. Prou. 28.18. Vide Eccles. 2.26. Psal. 127. of another mans Charitie, and remorse; and then thou wilt ac­knowledge this vanè conturbaris, too, that thou hast disquieted thy selfe in vaine, and to no purpose hea­ped vp riches, since thou knowest not who hath ga­thered them. But, suppose thy issue, both hopefull, and prouident, such a one as will not only preserue thy treasure, but inhaunce it; yet oftentimes his vine is barren, and there are no Oliue plants about his table; God doth shut vp the wombe, or so emasculate his loynes, that either the fruit of it is abortiue, or none at all; or, if he haue any (as Bildad said vnto Iob) the first borne of death shall deuoure his strength, Iob. 18.13, 14. and [Page 32]bring him to the King of terrours, Eccles 5.4. Iob 33.34. Iob 15.33. Vide Eccles 4.8 he shall shake off his vnripe grape as the vine and cast off his flower as the Oliue; and then the vanè conturbaris comes here al­so; He hath disquieted himselfe in vaine, and heaped vp riches, and knowe's not who shall gather them. Thus, Except the Lord build the house, they labour but in vaine that build it;Psal. 127.2. Children are the heritage of the Lord, and the fruit of the wombe is his reward; others may plant, and water, but be giue's the increase; and where he giue's them as blessings (as oftentimes he doe's) they are as arrowes in the hand of the strong man, Psal. 127.4.5. and happie is hee that hath his quiuer full: but when they are giuen otherwise (as they are some­times) as the whip and sword of a declining house then they are as arrowes in the hand of the Almighty; arrowes that are sharpe, and keene, shot from a dead­ly hand, and a bow of steele; arrowes that sticke fast, Iob 7. and pierce the very ioynts and the marrow; the venome whereof drinketh vp the spirits, the spirits of a Name and Family, when the light of it shall bee put out,Iob 18 5. and the sparkle of his fire shine no more. Who knowe's not that God doth often scourge the sinne of the Father in the children? and, for the fouleThe crimes here mencio­n'd, were Aua­rice, Oppressi­on, Sacriledge; which (spoken only in communi, and as a positiue truth in Diuinitie) the misprision, or preiudice of some did wire-draw and restraine too personally; and brought-home that to particular Families, which was intended only ingenerall, and at large. And therefore, if there bee any bosome so guiltie, as to eutertaine them otherwise, I am sorrie for the Application: the Authour is innocent. obliquities of the Predecessour, set's a rot vpon the whole Posteritie, when the name shall moulder with [Page 33]the Bodie, and the Fortunes with the name; so that the curse against the wicked man, runn's double; first, against his fortunes; they shall dry vp as a riuer, and shall vannish with noyse like a great thunder in vaine; next on his Issue; they shall not bring forth branches, but are as vncleane roots vpon a hard rocke. Eccles. 40.13, 15. Here is a vanè conturbaris, indeed; and not barely so, but, an infructuosè conturbaris, also; not only a vaine anxietie, but a fruitlesse; for, here is neither a thesaurizas, nor a congregabis; no Riches left that were heapt vp; or (if there bee) none to ga­ther them.

Thus, they that sow vanitie shall reape the winde; not a winde that shall lull and whistle them, but a winde that driue's and scatter's; scatters them, as the chaffe from the face of the whole earth. And though they grow mightie in possession, or name; so mightie, that in height they reach the very cloud's, yet God shall persecute them with his tempest, Psal. 18.12. and make them afraid with his storme; at his presence, these cloudes shall be remoued; and then, hailestones, and coales of fire. Or, though they aspire not so high, but climbe the mountaines only (though some mountaines (they say) kisse the cloudes, too) yet, tangit montes, & fumigabunt, God shall touch those mountaines, and they shall smoake; and as they smoake, vanish, and vanishing, confesse Tusolus al­tissimus super omnem terram. Thou, O Lord, art a­boue those mountaines, and not only aboue them, but all the World beside.

And I could wish that my words were altogether [Page 34]at randome here; and look't not collaterally, both to the text and the occasion. Who see's not (and let me not be thought rough, or vncharitable, in that I say, who see's not) that in latter ages the Almightie's Besome hath beene here; and, in the circuite of a few yeares, swept away many braue Worthies of the name; and not only his Besome, but his Axe too, lopt off many a hopefull twig, and glorious branch; and now of late, strooke at theThe Roote (howeuer) is still greene; & I wish heartily that it may grow-vp, and bud, & branch, to the flourish­ing and perpe­tuitie of the Name; though some haue barkt at my in­tegritie, ma­king my words here, a chur­lish prophecie, of the extirpa­tion of it, and sinall doome. But such snat­lers and close­biters of mens honours, I mustproclaime ignorant, or vniust, or both; for, either they vnderstood not what I spake, or, if they did, were iniurious in their applica­tion. Hoc tu Romane caueto. Stemme, of the Family; and at a blow hewe'd downe, one of the goodliest Cedars in all our Libanus. The very stones and walls speake so much; those vntimely Blackes, and these sorrowes. And yet (me thinke's) our sor­rowes are not as they should bee; our Firre-trees howle not that their Cedar is fall'n, neither are our Harpes (as yet) hung vpon the willowes; but wee can sing an Epithalamium, when we should be sigh­ing of an Elegie, as if our proiects could befoole the Almighties, and 'twere in our power to raise or e­stablish a name, when God seeme's to threaten the pulling downe. But (O thou altogether vanitie) looke vp to the Hils aboue, and to the Heauens aboue them; and there, to the maker of them both; who sit's in his great watch-tower, and obserue's all the passages of the sonnes of men; and not only obserue's them, but laugh's them to scorne; and, childing our presumptuous and vaine designes, bidd's vs looke backe to the text here; where we may reade the sto­rie of our wretchednesse, and so acknowledge, at length with our Prophet, that, Thou, O God, hast made our dayes as a span-long, and that our Age is as nothing [Page 35]before thee; and surely euery man in his best slate is al­together vanitie.

I haue done now with the text, and should begin with the occasion of it; the death of our Honourable Friend; but I was commanded only for a Sermon, not for a Panegyricke, that (I suppose) you might haue had (here) in a more keene and accurate dis­course; mine (I confesse) like my griefes, heauie, and bedew'd. True sorrow is more heartie, then Rhetoricall; and not so fit for applause, as for a groane. Your sauning eloquence playe's to much with the tongue, and leaue's the inward man vnsearcht; but, my bosome is ingag'd here, and not my lips; and that is too full to be emptied in this span-long of an Au­ditorie; the world shall haue it in an impartiall An­niuersarie: or, should I vent my respects, heere I could bee only your Remembrancer, not, your In­former.

The Country was not so much a stranger to his worth, but must acknowledge this truth with me; that hee was not guiltie of any peculiar sinne, either of greatnesse, or of youth; no lofty-ones, of arrogance or scorne; no grinding-ones, of cruelty or oppression; no flaming-ones, of ryot, or of lust; no base-ones of anxiety, or solicitude; no lewd­ones, of prophanation or debauchment; no bi­ting-ones, of rancour, or detraction; no creeping­ones, of Insinuation, or popularitie; no painted-ones, of ceremony, or hypocrisie; but all his Actions went by the line, and the square, as if his life had beene an exact Epitome both of moralitie, and Religion. There [Page 36]was nothing mortall about him, but his Body, and that was too frayle a cabbonet for those rich eminences to lodge in,Plin: Paneg. so that, as Plinie told his Traian mortali­tas magis finita est, quam vita his life was not termi­nated, but his mortality; Goodnesse and vertue (which were his being) haue a kinde of Diuinitie in them; and so, not mortall. Bonus a Deo differt tantum tem­pore, saith the Stoicke, Sen. Ep. 73. Betweene God and a good man, there is no distinction but in time; nor in that neither, if he meane (as it seeme's he do's) a titularie God, Idem Ibid. not an essentiall; for, nulla sine Deo mens bona, there is no good minde without a God in it: and that's the reason (I thinke) great men were first cal'd Gods; for, greatnesse presupposeth some raritie and perfection in it, and where that is, there is a kind of God head. And, if it were euer in greatnesse, it was heere; whether you take greatnesse for the name, or for the spirit; not, that hee was either haughtie or supercilious, but of a temper, truly generous, and heroicke, and (what is aboue ei­ther) truly Christian. A fast friend, and a noble brother, A munificent and open-handed Master; and (what I know, and therefore speake, and speake that you should know, and so imitate) an vncorrupted Patron; no fire-brand in his Countrey, nor Meteor in his Church; a flash, and falfe-blaze in Religion, he was so farre from approuing, that hee loathed; neither was hee so benighted in his intellectuals, as to be led vp and downe in a peruerse ignorance and darknesse, by an Ignis fatuus; your vocall puritie, [Page 37]and tongue deuotion, and furious zeale, euen when hee was no more a dying man, but a Saint (and the words of dying Saints are Oraculous to me) hee both censur'd and disclaimd; wishing the walles of our Hierusalem built vp stronger in Vnity and Peace; and, a more temperate and discreet silence amongst the wayward Hot-spurres of our Spirituall Mother. And, indeed, this Clamorous Sanctitie, this affected dresse of holinesse, without, is not the right dresse. Prou. 30.12. There is a generation (saith the Prophet) that are pure in their owne eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthines; the ragge, or the menstruous cloute, not so loath­some as some of these. Our bodies (you know) are call'd the Temples of the Holy Ghost; our heart, the Altar of that Temple; true deuotion, the fire of that Altar; sighes, and groanes, and sobs, the sa­crifice for that fire; These cast-vp the acceptable o­dour; these, only these, the sweet incense in the no­strils of the Almightie. The Hecatombe, and out­ward pompe of sacrifice, hath too much of the beast in it, the many-headed beast, the multitude; that, within, is of the spirit; and that of the spirit, is the true Child's of God; And this our noble friend had, without glosse or varnish, his life a recollected Chri­stianitie; his sicknesse, a penitent humiliation; and his death, an vnbattered assurance of his richer estate in glory; Insomuch, that I knew not, whether I might enuie, or admire, that God had bestowed such a plentifull mortification, on a Secular condition, and left Diuinitie, so barren. No Viper in his bosome; nor Vulture at his heart; no convulsion or gripe of [Page 38] Conscience; no pang of the inward man (so he con­fest to me) for the reigue of any darling sinne. And (indeed) his priuate meditations, groanes, solilo­quies, pensiue eleuations of eyes, and spirit, rap­ture's full of sublimitie, and contemplation (such as the heart could only eiaculate, and not the tongue) vndaunted resolutions and defiance of death, and all her terrours, spake him glorisied, before hee died. And thus, hauing made a full peace with God, and with the world, he sang his Nunc dimittis, and made a willing surrender of his Soule into the hands of his Redeemer; where hee hath now his Palme and white Robe, his Pennie of true happinesse, and Crowne of euer lasting glorie; to which God bring vs, with him, for Iesus Christ his sake. Amen.

Gloria in Excelsis Deo.


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