[Page] A FVNERALL SERMON PREA­CHED AT WATTON IN Hertfordshire, at the buriall of the ancient and worthy Knight, Sir PHILIP BOTELER, Decemb. 9. 1606.

By G. Downame Doctor in Diuinitie.

AT LONDON, Printed by FILIX KYNGSTON and Martin Clarke. 1607.

A FVNERALL SERMON, PREACHED at Walton in Hertfordshire, at the buriall of the ancient and wor­thy Knight, Sir Philip Bote­ler, Decemb. 9. 1606.

REVEL. 14. 13.‘And I heard a voice from heauen, say­ing vnto me, write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord, from thenceforth: [...]ea, saith he spirit, that they may rest from their labours, and their workes doe follow with then.’

THE holie Ghost hauing in the former chapter from The con­text, and coherence. the II. verse to the end, de­scribed Antichrist, (as all Bellarm. de Pontif. Rom. lib. 3. cap. 10. doe agree) and hauing in the 8. verse of this chapter foretold the [...]uine of the Antichristian seare signified [...]y the fall of Babylon, which was to fol­low [Page 2] vpon the preaching of the eternall Gospell foreshewed vers. 7: he endeuou­reth in the verses following euen vnto the end of this text, by two most forcible arguments to draw men out of Babylon, and to withdraw them from Antichrist: the one, importing those fearefull pu­nishments, which shall befall them, who after the reuelation of Antichrist by the preaching of the Gospell, shall ioyne themselues vnto him: the other, expres­sing the happie estate of those, who not suffering themselues to bee seduced by Antichrist, doe die in the true faith of Christ. The former argument is pro­pounded vers. 9. 10. 11. If any [...]an (saith he) worship the beast and his image, and re­ceiue his marke on his forehead, [...] vpon his hand, that is, (as I haue euidenty proued in my treatise of Antichrist, vhereunto for breuitie sake I doe now referre you) whosoeuer liueth and dieth a re [...]lute and absolute Papist, acknowledging the Popes supremacie, professing the Anti­christian faith, and practising the Idol [...] ­tries and superstitions of the apostatic [...] Church of Rome; He shall drinke of t [...] [Page 3] wine of Gods wrath, yea, of the pure wine powred (that is prepared to be drunke) in the cup of his wrath, whereby is meant euerlasting damnation, prepared for the wicked, wherein iudgement not to bee allaied with mercie, shall bee executed vpon them. Which iudgement, for the greatnes is most horrible, for they shall be tormented in fire and brimstone: for con­tinuance is not only without end, for the smoke of their torment shall ascend euer­more, but also without intermission, for they shall haue no rest day nor night.

And lest any man should think it hard, that men being either terrified by the crueltie of Antichrist, or seduced by his craft, to ioyne with him, shal euerlasting­ly bee tormented in fire and brimstone: the holy Ghost preuenteth this obie­ction, vers. 12. Hereby (saith he) the pa­tience of the Saints is tried, and here are they that keepe the commaundements of God, and the faith of Iesus discerned. For howsoeuer the vnsound Christian may be peruerted by Antichrist: yet it is im­possible (saith our Sauiour) that the elect should finally be seduced by him: Matth. [Page 4] 24. 24. By this argument therefore men are to be perswaded, as they tender the saluation of their soules, so to beware that they doe not encline to Poperie; or if they be Papists alreadie, to come out of Reuel. 18. 4 Babylon, as they are exhorted Reue. 18 4. For as Chrysostome rightly obserueth on 2. Thess. 2. 10. Antichrist preuaileth in In 2. Thess. 2. them that perish; or as Ierome speaketh, in them who are prepared vnto destruction. Ad Algas. Quaest. 11. 2. Thess. 2. 10. 11. 12. Vpon whom (saith the Apostle) because they haue not receiued the loue of the truth that they might be saued, the Lord sendeth the efficacie of error, that they may beleeue lies; that all they might be damned which beleeue not the truth, but haue pleasure in vnrighteousnes: whereby hee meaneth the mysterie of iniquitie, which is Anti­christianisme, that is to say, Poperie.

The other argument expressing the blessed estate of those that die, not in the religion of Antichrist (which the Papists doe) but in the true saith of Christ, op­posed to the religion of Antichrist, and professed in the Churches, which are re­formed by the preaching of the eternall Gospell, is contained in these word [...] [Page 5] which I haue read vnto you. And there­fore as the former reason must (if wee would not be damned) disswade vs from Poperie; so this argument must per­swade vs, if wee would be saued, to bee sincere and constant professors of the true faith of Christ, which by the vn­speakable mercie of God towards vs, is professed among vs. For if we shall liue and die in this faith as true and sound professors thereof, (as our hope is this worthie Knight did) then shal our estate, so soone as this life is ended, bee most happie and blessed, as the holy Ghost doth assure vs in this text. Wherein (that The text analysed. I may now come to the words them­selues) the present felicitie of all those that die in the Lord, is not onely affir­med, viz. in these words, Bles [...] are the dead, which die in the Lord from thence­forth, but also confirmed and prooued, both by authoritie and reason. The au­thoritie is, first, a voice from heauen, not only auouching this truth, but also com­manding Iohn to write it. Secondly, the testimonie of the spirit: Euen so, saith the spirit. The reason why those which die in [Page 6] the Lord are presently happie, is, because they rest from their labours and molesta­tions, and their works (meaning the bles­sed reward of their workes) follow with, or accompanie them. As if hee should haue said, They which die in the Lord are foorthwith happie, because death to them is the end of all miserie & trouble, and the beginning of euerlasting hap­pinesse.

Now whereas the holy Ghost doth not onely deliuer this assertion, that the dead which die in the Lord are blessed, but is so carefull to countenance and prooue the same vnto vs, and well are wee to be assured, that his care is not superfluous; this is therefore an euident token, that men commonly in the world be of ano­ther opinion, which is the cause why the holy Ghost saw it needfull not onely to deliuer this truth, but also to ratifie and confirme it.

For first, men commonly account it a miserable thing to die; and naturally are so affraide of death, as to saue their liues they will not sticke to commit any sinne almost, as to denie Christ and his [Page 7] religion, and to ioyne with Antichrist, and by their sinne to cast away their pre­cious soules, which they would not doe, if they could be perswaded, that death brings happinesse with it.

Againe, to die in the Lord, as it is here vnderstood with opposition, and not in the subiection and faith of Antichrist; not in the communion of the now apo­staticall Church of Rome; of the Papists, who falsely tearme themselues Catho­likes, is counted a damnable thing; of the carnall and backsliding Gospellers, a more miserable thing, than to liue in the saith and subiection of Antichrist. That therefore wee may die willingly when God shall call vs, and may be readie to lay downe our liues for the testimonie of the truth, rather than to yeeld to Anti­christ, and generally may be more af­fraid to commit sin, than to suffer death; let vs remember what the holy Ghost saith, that blessed are those which die in the Lord. And let vs consider, that this asser­tion is no humane inuention, or earthly deuice, but a diuine and heauenly oracle. For so saith Iohn, I heard a voyce from [Page 8] heauen. Many will say, If I might heare an Angell from heauen tell me that which you Ministers doe teach vs, as namely that to die in the Lord is an hap­pie thing, assuredly I would beleeue it. If from heauen it were testified vnto me, that it is a blessed thing to die, not in the faith and communion of the Romish Church, but in the faith of Christ profes­sed in the Churches reformed by the preaching of the Gospell, I would ra­ther die than ioyne with the Church of Rome. And yet behold, this truth is not onely auouched by a voice from heauen, but also that (as Peter speaketh in the like case) we might haue [...], a more firme word, which is the written 2. Pet. 1. 19. word, it is by the commandement of God from heauen committed to wri­ting, as containing words faithfull and Reuel. 21. 5. true; and being spoken and written, hath the testimonie of the spirit, that it is the vndoubted word of God. Such is the credit of the written word, that if an Angell from heauen should gainsay it, he Galat. 1. 8. were to be held accursed, Gal. 1. 8. And he that will not giue credit to the written [Page 9] word, which is the most sure foundation of our faith; neither would he beleeue, Luke 16. 31. though an Angell should come from heauen, or a spirit from the dead. Satan 2. Cor. 11. 14 can transforme himselfe into an Angell of light, and take vpon him the person 1. Sam. 28. 12. of the dead: and therefore if we should trust to apparitions, we might soone be deceiued. But the word of God cannot deceiue vs. Seeing therefore this asser­tion is pronounced by God from hea­uen, and at his appointment is commit­ted by the holy Euangelist to writing, and also hath the testimonie of the holy Ghost, who is the spirit of truth: Let vs therefore with all reuerence and good conscience hearken vnto it as to the o­racle of God, and with the full perswa­sion of faith giue vnfained credit vnto it, as vnto the vndoubted word of the Lord; namely, that the dead which die in the Lord, are from thenceforth blessed because they rest from their labours, and their workes follow them.

In which words three things are to be considered. First, who they are which be here pronounced blessed. Secondly, [Page 10] what this blessednesse is, and wherein it doth consist, which is shewed in the rea­son, that they rest from their labours, &c. Thirdly, when this blessednes belongeth to them: [...], saith hee, from thence­forth, that is, forthwith and immediatly after their death, and so forward.

As touching the first: Blessed (saith he) are the dead. What? the dead bles­sed? A strange paradoxe no doubt to hypocrites and worldly men, who haue placed their felicitie in the fruition of temporall things, and put the day of death farre from them, fearing nothing more than to die, and hoping for no­thing lesse, than to be blessed after death. But let vs remember that it is an oracle of God deliuered from heauen, and te­stified by the holy spirit. From hence therefore let vs learne truly to acknow­ledge the immortalitie of the soule, and effectually beleeue, that there is a life immortall, after this mortall life is en­ded. And in this beliefe let vs be care­full so to liue, as that we may hope after this life is ended, to be happie and bles­sed. Neither let vs be so mad, as for the [Page 11] momentanie fruition of temporall vani­ties in this vale of miserie, to lose an e­uerlasting inheritance in the kingdome of heauen.

But hee addeth, which die in the Lord. For not all that are dead are blessed; for many die out of the Lord Iesus and out of Gods fauour, as those which depart in the faith of Antichrist, or otherwise die in their sinnes, as in ignorance, infideli­tie, impenitencie, &c. and they are so far from being blessed when they die, as that by their death their miserie is infi­nitely increased. But they are blessed which die in the Lord. Which words some vnderstand as spoken of Martyrs onely, and so reade them, who die for the Lords cause. And no doubt, if all they be bles­sed, who die in the Lord; much more may we assure our selues, that they which doe not onely die in the Lord, but also for him, are most happie and blessed. And this must encourage all true Chri­stians, as we are perswaded that the Lord hath laid downe his life for our sakes; so to bee most readie and willing to lay downe our liues for his sake, if it shall [Page 12] please the Lord to vouchsafe vnto vs both that honour, as to be the Martyrs of Iesu; as also that fauour, as to make our death and afflictions, which otherwise all of vs must looke to suffer as chastise­ments for our sinnes, to be sufferings for righteousnes.

But yet not onely such as die for the Lord, are here pronounced blessed; nor all they are blesled, who would seeme to die for the Lord, but all they and onely they who die in the Lord are blessed. For if any man dying for the maintenance of heresie shall think he dieth for the Lord, (as all in that case are readie to pretend) notwithstanding hee is not blessed, be­cause hee doth not die in the Lord. For none are in him, but such as truly belieue in him, and none truly belieue in him, which doe not loue him and his mem­bers for his sake. But they which die for heresie, as they doe not truly belieue in Christ, so doe they not truly loue his members; but by their heresie cut them­selues from the bodie of Christ which is his true Church. For hs he that giueth his bodie to bee burnt and hath not loue, 1. Cor. 13. 3. [Page 13] (saith the Apostle) so hee that thinketh himselfe to be martyred, & hath not true faith, it profiteth him nothing. And such is the state, as of all other heretikes, so especially of the Popish martyrs of these times, as they are esteemed among thē. For besides that they do not die for their religion properly, but for treason and rebellion, and it is not the punishment but the cause that maketh a Martyr; their religion also is Antichristian, being the Caholike apostasie, the common sewre of heresie, and the very mysterie of ini­quitie. Neither doe they die in the cause or faith of Christ, but in the cause and faith of Antichrist; and therefore are the martyrs, not of Christ, but of Antichrist. The truth whereof none can denie, if this once bee prooued vnto them, which by our writings is sufficiently prooued, that Rome is Babylon, the Pope Anti­christ, and the Papists such as haue recei­ued the marke of the beast.

Therfore not only they which die for the Lord, nor all they who would seeme to die for him, but as I said, all they, and only they which die in the Lord, as the [Page 14] words [...] doe plainely signifie, are here by the voice of God from heauen, and by the testimony of the spirit pro­nounced blessed.

But let vs consider who may be said to die in the Lord, for this is the most materiall point in all this text. The like phrase is vsed 1. Thess. 4. 16. The dead in Christ. 1. Cor. 15. 18. They which are a sleepe in Christ. Which places being vn­derstood of al the faithfull, do cuidently proue, that this phrase is not to bee re­strained to Martyrs only, but generally to be extended to all true Christians. They therefore are said to die in Christ, who being in Christ, do so [...]nd this life; or who being by a true saith ingrafted into Christ, doe in that faith depart this life. So that to this happines two things are required, first that we be in Christ, for else we cannot be said to die in him; the second, that we abide in him vnto the end, for else we do not die in him.

But you will say, how can we be in Christ, seeing he is in heauen, and we on the earth? I answere, whosoeuer truly beleeueth in Christ, he is in Christ, and [Page 15] being in him is blessed. Heere therefore I am to shew two things, 1. That the faithfull be in Christ, 2. That their being in him is the ground of their happinesse. For there euery faithfull man and wo­man is a true member of the body of Christ, bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh, Eph. 5. 30. and consequently they are in him, and he in them, they being in him by faith, and he in them by his spirit. And they are not only in him, but also one with him, according to his prayer, Ioh. 17. For as the body is one, and yet hath many mem­bers, and all the members though many are but one body, so is Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptised into one body, namely of Christ, and by the same were all made to drinke into one spirit, viz. of Christ; that is, by the Spirit of Christ, we are in Bap­tisme engrafted into the body of Christ, and in the Lords Supper vnited to his Spirit. 1. Cor. 12. 12. 13. As therefore there is an vnion betwixt the head of the natural body, and the members thereof, which be most remote from it, by rea­son of the vnity of the same soule, which being chiefely seated in the head, quick­neth [Page 16] also the feet; so is it in the mysticall body of Christ. For hereby, as S. Iohn saith, We know that we dwell in Christ, and he in vs, because he hath giuen vs of his spi­rit. This therfore is my first reason: who­soeuer is in the body of Christ, hee is in Christ; euery one that truly beleeueth in Christ, is in the body of Christ, as a liuely member thereof: therefore euery one that truly beleeueth in Christ, is in Christ. The like comparison our Sauiour vseth, Ioh. 15. where he saith that he is the vine, and the faithfull are as it were Iohn 15. 2. &c. branches in him. As the branches there­fore be in the vine, so the faithfull are in Christ.

Againe, the Sacraments serue to this end, to assure the faithfull that they be in 2 Christ. For by the one we are baptised into Christ, that is, by Baptisme ingraf­ted into him, Gal. 3. 27. in the other, we Rom. 6. 3. Gal. 3. 27. eate his body, and drinke his blood which whosoeuer doth, he is in Christ and Christ in him, Ioh. 6. 56. both whic [...] Ioh. 6. 56. are plainely testified by the Apostle i [...] the place euen now cited. For (saith h [...] 1. Cor. 12. 13 by the same Spirit we are all baptis [...] [Page 17] into one body, and made all to drinke into one spirit.

But what need I other proofes, seeing 3 the holy Ghost in the Scripture plainely affirmeth that the faithfull be in Christ? as 1. Cor. 1. 30. You (saith the Apostle to the faithfull) are of God in Christ. And it 1. Cor. 1. 30. is an vsuall thing in the Scriptures to terme the faithfull, such as be in Christ, as Ephes. 1. 1. Philip. 1. 1. Colos. 1. 2. to Ephes. 1. 1. Philip. 1. [...] Col. 1. 2. Rom. [...]. 1. the faithfull which be in Christ, to all the Saints in Christ, &c. In the 8. to the Ro­mans, when he would signifie that the faithfull are forced from damnation, he saith, There is no condemnation to them which he in Christ Iesus. When he would signifie that the faithfull are also rege­nerate, he saith, Whosoeuer is in Christ, he 2. Cor. 5. 17. is a new creature. And finally, as the faith­full are here said to die in Christ, so else­where they are said to liue in him, and he in them: 2. Tim. 3. 12. Gal. 2. 20. 2. Tim. 3. 12 Gal. 2. 20.

The vse which we are to make hereof, is two-fold, the one of instruction, the o­ther of comfort. For seeing the faithfull are in Christ, it behoueth all them who would seeme to bee true Christians, to [Page 18] behaue themselues as becommeth those which are in Christ, gouerned and gui­ded by his spirit according to his Word. For this we are to know, that the offen­ces (I meane especially such as be noto­rious offences) of such as be, or would seeme to be in Christ, do redound to the dishonor of Christ our head. For as we seeme to haue communion with him (which in sinful actions indeed we haue not, but are then affected as members of the naturall body benummed with the palsie, which though they haue vnion with their head, yet haue not commu­nion of sense and motion, deriued to them from the head) but I say as wee seeme to haue communion with him; so we seeme to draw him into the com­munion and fellowship of our sinne, which is horrible to be thought. When as therefore we are incited or allured to the practise of sinne, let this considera­tion restraine vs. For seeing wee professe our selues, our soules and bodies to bee members of Christ, let vs say with the Apostle, Shal I take the member of Christ; and make it the member of a harlot? G [...] 1. Cor. 6. 15. [Page 19] forbid. And so for other sinnes, shall I defile the member of Christ with idola­trie, and make it a member of Anti­christ? or shall I pollute the member of Christ, with drunkennesse, with theft, with blood, with witchcraft, &c. and make it (as much as in me lieth) a limbe of the diuell? God forbid.

The comfort which all the faithfull are from hence to reape, is that comfort of all comforts, namely that they are in Christ; and consequently are so to con­ceiue of themselues, as being in Christ. I say againe, that all they, who embrace the mercies of God in Christ, and doe lay hold vpon him by a true and a liuely faith, are to bee assured that they are in Christ: and consequently that they are in the fauour of God, and accepted of him in Christ as righteous, and in Christ adopted as the children of GOD and heires of eternall life. Many not well considering this point, doe greatly wea­ken the faith, either of others, or their owne. Of others, as namely they, who halting betweene vs and the Papists, do affirme, that whiles we consider the mer­cies [Page 20] of God and merits of Christ, wee haue cause of assurance, as the Prote­stants teach; but when wee looke into our selues, wee haue iust cause to doubt according to the doctrine of the Pa­pists. But I answere, if we looke into our selues, as we are in our selues, considered a part from Christ; the best of vs all shal haue iust cause, not onely to doubt, as the Papists teach, but also to despaire. Yea, it were presumption for a man in that case, to make but a doubtfull mat­ter of it. But although we are to be hum­bled in the conceit of our owne vilenes, and are not onely to doubt, but also to despaire of saluation in our selues, wee being not considered as in Christ: yet this hindreth not, but that wee may and ought to be assured of saluatiōin Christ. For though wee be sinfull in our selues, yet are wee the righteousnes of God in Christ: though in our selues wee haue broken the law, and are therefore sub­iect to the curse thereof; yet in Christ we haue fulfilled the law, and are freed Gal. 3. 13. from the curse: though in our selues we are the children of wrath, and seruants Ephes. 2. 3. [Page 21] of sinne; yet in Christ we are the children of God, and heires of eternall life. As Iohn 1. 12. Rom. 8. 16. therefore the faithfull most certainly be in Christ, so let them learne to conceiue of themselues as they be in Christ; that what cause soeuer they haue in them­selues to doubt, they may in Christ as­sure themselues of their iustification and saluation. Many a one that indeede be­leeueth in Christ, doth himselfe wrong, by not thinking of himselfe, as hee is in Christ. For the more assured wee are of Gods loue in Christ, the more shall our heart bee enflamed with loue towards God, and our brethren for his sake; the more zealous we shall be of Gods glo­rie, the more cheerefull in his seruice. And that which is the happinesse of a Christian here wee shall leade our liues Tit. 2. 13. in the expectation of a better life. For the life, as it were, of this life mortall, is the assurance of life immortall.

Thus you haue heard that the faith­full be in Christ, and the vse which wee are to make thereof; now wee are to shew, that this being in Christ, is the ground of our happinesse. For it is not [Page 22] our liuing, nor our dying in it selfe, that maketh vs happie; but our being in Christ whilest we liue, maketh vs happy, beatitudine viae, that is, with such a hap­pinesse as in this time of our pilgrimage is incident vnto vs whilest we are in the way: and our being in Christ, when we die, maketh vs happie, beatitudine patriae, that is, with complete and eternal felici­tie, when we comming to the end of our way, doe arriue into the hauen of rest, and heauen of blisse, which is the coun­trey and kingdom, which the Lord hath prepared for all those that be in Christ. Now that our being in Christ is the ground of all our happinesse, I shew it thus. For first, if we be not in Christ, we are in the state of damnation. And con­trariwise, the cause why any man is ex­empted from damnation, is, because he is in Christ. There is no condemnation Rom. 8. 1. (saith the Apostle) to them that are in Christ Iesus, Rom. 8. 1.

Secondly, If wee be not in Christ, wee are dead in our sinnes, neither can we do any thing (being out of him) which be­longeth to a spirituall life. But being in Ioh. 15. 4. 5. [Page 23] him, we liue in him, and he in vs a spiri­tuall Gal. 2. 20. life which neuer shall haue end. For as in the vnion of the bodie with the soule, the bodily life consisteth: so in the vnion of the whole man with Christ, consisteth our spirituall life. And as the 1. Ioh. 5. 12. bodie seuered from the soule, is dead; so the whole man seuered from Christ, 1. Tim. 5. 6. Luke 9. 60. is spiritually dead, how liuely or cranke so euer he may seeme to be, in respect of the bodily life.

Thirdly, if we be out of Christ, we are altogether foolish in respect of spiritual things: yea, our wisedome is [...]mitie a­gainst God; we are in our serues vniust Rom. 8. 7. and guiltie of sinne, vnholy and defiled with manifold corruptions: and laffly, in our selues are bondflaues of fin and Satan, but being in Christ, he is made vn­to 1. Cor. 1. 30. vs of God, wisedome, righteousnes, san­ctification and redemption. For, being in Christ, wee haue communion with him, and he with vs. So that as our sinne was his by imputation, so is his obedience ours; he being made sinne for vs, that we 2. Cor. 5. 21. Col. 1. 24. Act. 9. 4. might be the righteousnes of God in him. And as his sufferings be ours, so ours be [Page 24] his. But wee are not onely made parta­kers of his merits to our iustification; but also being in him, we are made par­takers of his graces vnto sanctification. For as the sacred oyle being powred on the head of the high Priest, who was a figure of Christ, rested not there, but de­scended to his lower parts: so the oyle Psal. 123. 2. of grace wherewith Christ our head was annointed without measure, is from him deriued to his members. For of his fulnes wee doc all receiue, euen grace for grace: John 1. 16. Ioh. 1. 16.

Fourthly, being in Christ, we haue not onely communion with him in respect of his merits and efficacie; but also haue vnion with him, in respect of his person: wee being made one with him, and hee with vs; from which vnion, the asort­said communion doth proceede. And therefore in him, as our head, wee may truly be said to haue fulfilled the law: in him, wee haue satisfied the iustice of God: And that which is more; in him, are wee not onely risen againe, but also are ascended into heauen, and set in the Ephes. 2. 6. heauenly places in Christ, Ephes. 2. 6. And [Page 25] our life is hid with Christ in God Col. 3. 3. Coloss. 3. 3. Al which doe argue the assurance, which the faithfull ought to haue, of their iu­stification, of resurrection vnto glorie, and of eternall life. For so long as the head is aboue the waters, the other members cannot be drowned: so, while our head is happie in heauen, the salua­tion of all his members is most sure and certaine.

Lastly, being in Christ, we are not on­ly vnited vnto him; but in him wee are also vnited to the whole Trinitie; and 1. John. 3. being vnited vnto it, we shall haue with it euerlasting fellowship; in which fel­lowship and fruition of God, perfect fe­licitie doth consist.

Thus haue you heard, that the faith­full are in Christ; and that all which bee in Christ, are happie and blessed. Now if we beleeue (as our dutie is) this vndoub­ted truth; namely, that al which by faith are in Christ be blested; then will we in our iudgements esteeme, and in our af­fections desire to be in Christ, aboue all the things of this world. For what is our happinesse, that is esteemed and affected [Page 26] of vs as our chiefest good? If therefore this be our happinesse, to bee in Christ, then will wee, with the Apostle, esteeme all other things as drosse and dung, that Phil. 3. 8. 9. hauing gained Christ, by a true faith, wee may bee found in him: and accor­dingly will we giue diligence, not onely in vsing the meanes, whereby wee may beleeue and be in Christ: but also in ga­thering testimonies to assure vs, that we are in Christ by a true and liuely faith.

The vse therefore which wee are to make of the former doctrine, concer­ning the blessed estate of those which be in Christ by faith, is two-fold. First, that we labour to be in Christ: the second, that we labour to know that wee are in Christ. As touching the former, wee are to performe two things. The first, that we vse the meanes to beleeue. Secondly, that wee doe beleeue. The ordinarie meanes of begetting faith is the mini­sterie of the word. For as the Apostle saith, Faith commeth by hearing the word: Rom. 10. 17. & 14. and againe, How can they beleeue in him, of whom they haue not heard? and how can they heare without a Preacher? For what [Page 27] are Preachers, but Ministers by whom you doe beleeue? 1. Cor. 3. 5. who, be­cause 1. Cor. 3. 5. they are by preaching the Gospel, the instruments of God for the beget­ting of faith in the elect, by which they are iustified, and adopted sons of God; are therefore said to iustifie men, and by Deut. 12. 3. the preaching of the Gospell, which is the immortall seed whereof Peter spea­keth, 1. Cor. 4. 15. 1. Pet. 1. 23. to beget men vnto God. If therefore there be no saluation but by Christ, and if we haue no part in Christ but by faith, and if we attaine not to faith ordinarilie but by hearing the word of God; this therefore must teach vs, as wee desire to be saued, so to be carefull and conscio­nable hearers of the word of God, which is his power to our saluation. For how Rom. 1. 16. meanly soeuer carnall and worldly men esteeme of the preaching of the Gospel; notwithstanding it is the ordinance and good pleasure of God, by the foolishnes of preaching (for so men esteeme it) to saue 1. Cor. 1. 21. those that doe beleeue, 1. Cor. 1. 21.

But our hearing must be mingled with Hebr. 4. 2. faith, or else it profiteth nothing. When as therefore the Lord in the ministerie [Page 28] of the Gospell, doth not onely reueale and offer vnto vs his vnspeakeable mer­cie in Christ: but also by his embassa­dours doth desire vs, that wee would be reconciled vnto him, and that we would accept of his mercie offered vnto vs in Christ, by receiuing him to be our Saui­our: we are not only in generall to be­leeue, that hee is the only Sauiour of Mankind; but in particular, wee are to embrace the mercies of God offered vn­to vs in him, and receiue him as our Sa­uiour, earnestly desiring in out hearts to be made partakers of his merits, and vn­fained resoluing in our minds to rest and rely vpon him, as our only Sauiour. He that thus receiueth Christ, is estee­med Ioh. 1. 1 [...]. of God (who accepteth in weake▪ Christians their sincere desire to receiue Christ, and vnfained resolution to rest vpon him alone for saluation, for the deed it selfe, which is faith) he is estee­med, I say, to beleeue, and by this faith whereby he thus receiueth Christ, he is vnited vnto him. And howsoeuer as yet in the court of his owne conscience, per­haps he is not iustified, being poore it [Page 29] spirit, and hungring and thirsting after the righteousnes of Christ, which in his owne sense he doth not yet find impu­ted vnto him: yet notwithstanding in high court of heauen, he is as surely iu­stified before God, as by our Sauiour, Matth. 5. he is pronounced blessed.

And if any man shal think it strange, Mat. 5. 3. 6. that so small a measure of faith should be effectuall to vnite vs vnto Christ, and to iustifie vs before God; let him consi­der, that faith doth not iustifie vs as it is a qualitie, gift, habite, or worke in vs, or in respect of the worthines thereof; but only relatiuely, in regard of Christ the obiect, which it doth apprehend. In so much that Peter calleth the faith of all 2. Pet. 1. 1. the faithfull, though vnequall in it selfe, [...], that is of equall value or price, be­cause it doth alike iustifie; though all be not alike assured of their iustification. For the same righteousnes of Christ, which by a strong faith is apprehended to iu­stification, is also apprehended by a weake faith. For as the almes receiued by a feeble hand, doth as well relieue the partie, as that which is receiued by a [Page 30] strong hand, and it is not the hand but the almes properly which doth relieue and as the brazen Serpent which was a figure of Christ, did heale those among the Israelites which listed vp their weake eyes towards it, as well as those which were quicke-sighted: so the righteous­nes of Christ being apprehended by a weake faith, doth as well iustifie the be­leeuer, as when it is receiued by a strong faith, so it is the righteousnes of Christ, which faith doth apprehend, and not faith it selfe which doth iustifie.

But it will be said, faith is a full assu­rance, therefore he that hath not a full assurance, hath not faith. I answere, not all faith is a full assurance, but the strong and perfect faith. For a man must belieue in Christ, before he can be in Christ, or haue remission of sinnes by him. A man must haue remission of sinnes, before he is bound to beleeue it, and a man must beleeue it, and haue some measure of as­surance, before he can haue the fulnes of assurance, which is not attained at the first.

But you will say, faith is defined of [Page 31] good Diuines to be a full assurance. I an­swer, that they define it in the perfection of it: to teach vs, not to content our selues with the lesse degrees of faith; but to proceed from faith to faith, vntill wee come to that [...] or full assurance of faith.

For this is the second thing which, as I said, wee are to labour for, namely to know and to be assured that wee be in Christ. And to this purpose wee are to performe two things. First, we are to trie our selues whether we be in Christ: and secondly wee are to giue diligence to make our being in Christ more sure vn­to vs. As touching the former, it is the aduice of the Apostle, that wee should trie our selues whether wee bee in the 2. Cor. 13. 5. faith. For many deceiue, both them­selues with a vaine opinion, and others with a bare profession of faith. As first they, who haue not so much as the dog­maticall or historicall faith, which is but Hebr. 11. 6. a degree towards a iustifying faith. For though a man may haue this generall or historicall faith, and yet want the iusti­fying faith; yet a man cannot haue a iu­stifying [Page 30] [...] [Page 31] [...] [Page 32] faith, who hath not in some measure the generall or dogmaticall Hebr. 11. 6. faith. Now this generall faith consisteth of two things, knowledge of the word of God, and assent vnto it that it is true. First therfore, they who haue not know­ledge of the principles of religion, are so farre from hauing a true iustifying faith; that they haue not so much as the first steppe or degree towards it. Therefore, though ignorant persons be most for­ward to commend their faith, yet they are to know, whiles they continue in ig­norance, they are altogether voide of faith, and consequently of all grace, whereby they might hope to be saued. For without knowledge there can be n [...] faith; and without faith there is no hope of saluation, or any other sauing grace.

Againe, those which doe not giue as­sent to the whole word of God, and eue­rie part thereof, that it is true; are so f [...] from hauing the iustifying faith, th [...] they haue not so much as the general or historicall faith, which the diue [...] themselues are said to haue; as namely those which will beleeue so much of the Iam. 2. 29. [Page 33] Scriptures as they list, and no more then liketh them. For although the proper obiect of faith, as it iustifieth, and vni­teth vs vnto Christ, is Christ our Sauiour, or the promises of the Gospell concer­ning saluation by him; yet by the same faith, whereby wee are iustified, wee doe vndoubtedly beleeue the whole word of God and euery part thereof. The iu­stifying faith euermore including and presupposing the generall and dogma­ticall faith.

Secondly, they haue not the true euan­gelicall faith who haue not also the le­gall faith, perswading them of their mi­serable and accursed estate in them­selues, both in regard of their sinnes, as also of the punishments; which by the threatnings of the law, if they did truly beleeue them, they would acknowledge to bee due vnto them. Now, this legall faith, is a necessarie preparatiue to the iustifying faith. For vntill wee see our selues to be accursed in our selues, wee will not so much as desire seriously to be iustified by Christ. Vntill we find our selues to be bondslaues of sinne and Sa­tan, [Page 34] wee will not earnestly seeke to bee ransomed or redeemed. Vntill wee ac­knowledge our selues to be the children of wrath, we will not seeke to be recon­ciled vnto God in Christ. In a word, vn­till wee finde our selues to be miserable in our selues, we will not seriously seeke and sue for the mercies of God or me­rits of Christ our Sauiour; but as much as in vs lieth suffer his precious blood to bee spilt in vaine, without any care to applie it to our selues. For what neede hast thou, either of a Sauiour, if thou art not in thy selfe lost; or of a Redeemer, if thou art not a captiue; or of a reconci­ler, Iohn. 8. 33. if thou art not an enemie: or what need hast thou of mercie, if thou art not in miserie? The whole neede not the Phy­sition, saith our Sauiour Christ, but the Mat. 9. 13. sicke. Well, thou euer hast had a good conceit of thy selfe, thou euer hast loued God aboue all things, and thy neigh­bour as thy selfe, thou neuer didst doubt of thy saluation in al thy life, &c. an eui­dent argument that thou diddest neuer care for Christ, or finde thy selfe to stand in neede of a Sauiour. But remember [Page 35] who saith, I came not to call the righteous, Mat. 9. 13. (that is, such as bee righteous in their owne conceits) but sinners (that is, hum­bled sinners) to repentance. And againe, that he came to seeke and to saue that Mat. 18. 11. which was lost, to preach the Gospell to the poore, namely in spirit, to heale the Luke 4. 18. broken hearted, to preach deliuerance or redemption to the captiues.

Wherefore neuer perswade thy selfe that thou hast a iustifying faith, if thou doest not as well beleeue the threat­nings of the Law, as the promises of the Gospell. For although faith doth not iustifie, as it apprehēdeth the threat­nings, yet that faith which doth iustifie, (including euermore the generall, and consequently the legall faith) doth be­leeue the threatnings of the law as the vndoubted word of God. The same faith therefore, which doth assure thee of thy reconciliation, redemption and saluation in Christ, doth first informe thee, that thou art an enemie of God, a bondslaue of sinne, and vtterly lost in thy selfe; that being with the Publican Luke 18. 14. humbled in thy selfe, thou maist be ex­alted in Christ.

[Page 36] Thirdly, they deceiue either them­selues with a fancie, or others with a shew of faith, who haue not an effectuall and liuely faith. For as there is a two­fold knowledge, the one a literall or speculatiue knowledge, the other spiri­tuall and operatiue, and that knowledge is onely true which is working, 1. Ioh. 2. 1. Ioh. 2. 3. 4 3. 4: so there is a double faith, an effe­ctuall, vnfained, and liuely faith; and an idle, counterfeit and dead faith. Now, faith is said to be liuely and effectuall in two respects. First, respectu actus primi, in regard of the effectuall and true be­ing of it. Secondly, respectu actus secun­di, in regard of the operation of it. In both senses every kinde of faith becom­meth effectuall by application of that which is beleeued. As first, the dogma­ticall faith is liuely and effectuall, when thou doest not onely beleeue in gene­rall what God is; but by particular ap­plication to thy selfe, doest beleeue that he is such a one to thee. As for example, if thou doest beleeue onely by a general and historicall faith, that God is omni­present, that is, in euery place present [Page 37] filling heauen and earth, and that hee is omniscient, and as the Scriptures call Ier. 23. 24. him, [...] knowing all things, yea the very secrets of mens hearts, and that by a most perfect and distinct know­ledge; thou maist be little the better for this faith. But if thou doest beleeue with application to thy selfe, that he is euery where present with thee, and that his eyes be alwaies vpon thee, beholding all thy waies; then will this faith be ef­fectuall to make thee behaue thy selfe vprightly, as in his presence and sight, and so of the rest.

The like may bee said of the legall faith. For a man may beleeue in a con­fused and generall manner the threat­nings of the law to be true, and yet ne­uer the more bee humbled; but goe on securely in his sinne, and notwithstan­ding his impenitencie and infidelitie, promise to himself impunitie. But when as a man applieth the threatning after this manner to himselfe: If this be true (as I vnsainedly acknowledge it to bee the vndoubted word of God) that euery one is in himselfe accursed and subiect to Gal. 3. 10. [Page 38] eternall death and damnation, who hath not continued in all the things which are written in the booke of the law to doe them: how can it possibly be auoided, but that I am in my selfe a most accursed wight and damned wretch, who haue not con­tinued in all the things which are written in the booke of the law to doe them? nay, in steed of doing the things com­manded, I haue done the things forbid­den; in steed of keeping all the com­mandements of God, I haue broken them al diuersly and grieuously; in steed of continuing in a perpetual obedience, I haue continued in the breach of Gods commandements; as indeed vntill the time of a mans conuersion, he doth no­thing, nay hee can doe nothing else but sinne against God. Thus, by application, the legall faith becommeth effectuall, and thereby a man is humbled and brought to despaire of saluation in him­selfe, so that if hee would be saued, hee must seeke to be freed from the curse of the Law, and so bee forced to seeke for saluation out of himselfe in Christ; to which ende the Lawe is said to bee a [Page 39] schoolemaster vnto Christ.

The very same is to be vnderstood of the Euangelicall faith, or faith in Christ. For many there be (and they as it is to be feared are the greatest number) who are content to make profession of the Gospel, either because it is inioyned (be­ing as ready to embrace the religion of Antichrist, if authoritie should impose it vpon them) or because it standeth well with their outward respects, or to say the best of them, because it promiseth salua­tion to them that beleeue; but rest in this outward profession of faith, without any speciall application of the promises of the Gospell, or apprehension of the me­rits of Christ, without which it is not a true and effectuall faith, vniting vs vnto Christ, or iustifying vs in him. For it can­not bee, that a man seeing by a legall faith, his owne damnable estate in him­selfe, he should be said truly and effectu­ally to beleeue the promise of the Go­spell, which assureth saluation to all (though most wretched in themselues) that beleeue in Christ; who is not willing to receiue and embrace him as his Saui­our, [Page 40] desiring in his heart to be made par­taker of the merits of Christ, and resol­uing in his mind to rest and rely vpon him for saluation. For whatsoeuer either Papists, or they that are Popishly min­ded, doe speake of this applying of the promises of the Gospell, and particular apprehending of Christ; it is most cer­taine, that without it, faith doth not iu­stifie vs before God, or vnite vs vnto Christ. For though [...] sufferings of Christ, bee as a soueraigne salue to heale our Esay 53. 5. sores; though his body be meat indeed, and his blood drinke indeed, to feed our Iohn 6. 55. soules vnto eternal life, though his righ­teousnes be as a wedding garment, to couer our nakednes, and to make vs ac­cepted of God: yet his merits doe not cure our diseased soules, vnlesse they be applied; his body & blood do not nou­rish vs, vnlesse we spiritually eate his bo­dy and drinke his blood; neither doth the robe of his righteousnes couer vs, vnlesse we put it on. And surely if faith doth iustifie vs, as it is an instrument to apprehend Christ, who is our righteous­nes, and no [...] in any other respect; then [Page 41] is it most certain, that it doth not iustifie, vnlesse it be such a faith as doth appre­hend the righteousnes of Christ, and ap­ply the promise of the Gospell to our selues.

Wee must therefore learne to applie the promise of the Gospel to our selues; which we may do after this manner. Is this true (as I acknowledge it to be the word of truth) that although I am by the sentence of the law, and testimony of mine owne conscience, an accursed wretch in my selfe, notwithstanding, I shall be happy and blessed in Christ, if I receiue him to be my Sauiour, and truly beleeue in him, (for in him I shall not only be acquited from the curse, but al­so intitled to the kingdome of heauen?) And doth the Lord in the ministery of the Gospell, which he hath vouchsafed vnto me, not only reueale the riches of his abundant mercy in Christ, and offer the same vnto vs; but also stirre vs vp to embrace his mercy offered vnto vs in Christ, and by his Embassadors earnest­ly desire vs to be reconciled vnto him? I 2. Cor. 5. 20. do therfore vnfainedly receiue the Lord [Page 42] Iesus, to be my sweete Sauiour, first, ear­nestly desiring in my heart to be made partaker of his merits, (to which end I wil daily pray vnto God, that as he hath desired mee to accept of his mercy, and to be reconciled vnto him, so he would bee pleased to accept of the merits and obedience of Christ, as a full discharge for my sinnes, and that in him he would bee reconciled vnto mee, pardoning my sinnes, and imputing vnto mee the righteousnes of his Sonne) and second­ly resoluing in my mind, to acknow­ledge him to be my only Sauiour, and to rest vpon him alone, for my saluation, being perswaded that hee died for my sinnes, and rose againe for my iustifica­tion. Thus, by application, the Euange­lical faith becommeth effectual to vnite vs vnto Christ, and to iustifie vs before God. But as our faith must be effectuall, in apprehending Christ the obiect there­of, vnto iustification, so must it bee in some measure effectuall in the subiect, that is, the beleeuer, vnto sanctification. For true faith inwardly purgeth the hart, Act. 15. 9. and outwardly worketh by loue. Fo [...] [Page 43] when a man is truly perswaded of the e­uerlasting Gal. 5. 6. loue of God towards him in Christ, this perswasion (which is faith) if it bee true and effectuall, cannot but stirre vp his heart to loue the Lord, and his neighbour for the Lords sake. Faith therefore, as S. Iames saith, must be de­monstrated by good workes, which are Iam. 2. 18. the necessary fruits thereof. For although faith alone doth iustifie, as Paul shew­eth, Rom. 3. 28. Gal. 2. 16. because faith is the only thing in vs, which concurreth vnto the act of iustifi­cation, and is the only grace which ser­ueth as an instrument to apprehend and receiue Christ, who only is our righte­ousnes: yet that faith which is alone, not ioyned with repentance, & amendment of life, doth not iustifie, as Iames proueth, because it is not a true faith. For euen as the body (saith he) without spirit, that is breath, is iudged dead, so faith with­out workes (which are as it were the breathing of a liuely faith) is iudged to be dead. We are to remember that they which be in Christ, haue their workes to follow them, as it is heere said. For in whom Christ dwelleth by faith, to iusti­fie [Page 42] [...] [Page 43] [...] [Page 44] them, hee dwelleth also by his spirit, to sanctifie thē, neither did he come wit [...] water alone, or blood alone, but as Io [...] saith, hee came both with water and 1 Iohn. 1. 6. Iohn 19. 34. 35. blood, both which gushed out of h [...] side; the blood, I say, of redemption to purge vs from the guilt of sinne, and the water of ablution, to cleanse vs from th [...] corruption. And euen as from the fis [...] Adam, there is communicated vnto vs not only the guilt of his first sin by in [...] Rom. 5. 12. &c. putation (because as we were in him a the root, so in him we sinned originally but also the corruption of his natur [...] which by his sinne hee had contracte [...] deriued vnto vs by generation: So fro [...] Christ the second Adam, there is co [...] municated vnto vs, not only the me [...] of his obedience by imputation, to a quite vs from the guilt of sinne; (beca [...] in him, as in our head, we haue fulfill [...] the law, & satisfied the iustice of God; but also the graces of his spirit, where we are made partakers of the diuine [...] ture, deriued vnto vs by regeneration. 2. Pet. 1. 4. therefore we be in Christ, wee beco [...] new creatures, 2. Cor. 5. 17. walking [...] 2. Cor 5. 17. [Page 45] after the flesh, but after the spirit. Rom. Rom. 8. 1. 81. For if we shal say, that we haue com­munion with him as his members, and yet walke in darkenesse, we deceiue our 1. Iohn 1. 6. selues.

But if we esteeme it our happines to be in Christ, we will not only be careful to trie our selues, whether we be in him, but also wee will giue all diligence to make our being in Christ more & more sure vnto vs. And to this purpose we must earnestly pray vnto the Lord, that hee would giue vnto vs his spirit (which he Luk. 11. 23. hath promised to giue to those that aske him) his spirit, I say, of adoption, crying in our hearts Abba Father, testi­fying Rom. 8. 15. 16. to our spirits that we are the chil­dren of God, and heires of eternall life, Ephes. 1. 13. 14. 4. 30. sealing vs vp to the day of our full re­demption, and as the earnest of our sal­uation, assuring vs thereof.

Secondly, wee must not content our selues with the inferiour degrees of faith, but be carefull to grow from faith to faith, vntill we come to the full assu­rance of faith. And to this end, wee ha­ving receiued Christ, as before was said, [Page 46] in the earnest desire of our harts, and vn­fained resolution of our mindes; wee must, for the increase of our faith, per­swade our selues that wee now are in CHRIST, and so conceiue of our selues as being in him, reconciled vn­to GOD, and iustified by faith; that being in him wee haue communion with him, his merits being imputed vn­to vs that be in him, as if we had perfor­med the same for our selues in our owne persons. For being in him, wee are to be assured, that whatsoeuer hee performed for the saluation of the faithfull, he per­formed for vs; and may with the Apo­stle in particular applie the same to v [...] Gal. 2. 20. Together with Christ (saith hee, and s [...] must euery faithfull man say) I was cr [...] ­cisied. And I liue, no longer I, but Christ [...] ­ueth in me: and the life whith I now liue [...] the flesh, I liue by the faith of the sonne [...] God, who loued me and gaue himselfe f [...] me. And for the confirmation of [...] faith in this particular assurance, wee [...] to make vse of the Sacraments. For th [...] baptisme which wee receiued in our [...] fancie, remaineth as a sure pledge vn [...] [Page 47] vs to assure vs, that wee beleeuing in Christ, are ingrafted into him; and the Sacrament of the Lords Supper serueth to assure vnto vs our vnion and commu­nion with Christ.

Lastly, wee are, according to the ex­hortation of S. Peter, to giue diligence 2. Pet. 1. 10. to make our calling, election, iustifica­tion, and being in Christ more & more sure vnto vs, by leading of a godly and vpright life. For sanctification, to a man professing the true faith, is an vndoubted argument of his iustification, and of his being in Christ, 1. Ioh. 3. 24. For seeing a 1. Ioh. 3. 24. man cannot be sanctified before hee is iustified, nor liue a spirituall life vnlesse he be in Christ; it is therefore most cer­taine that whosoeuer is sanctified (as euery one is that hath an vnfained pur­pose to walke in the obedience of Gods will, though besides his purpose he faile through infirmitie in many particulars) hee is also iustified and ingrafted into Christ.

But as we must be in Christ, if we will be blessed by dying in him; so must we [...]bide in him to the end, or else wee doe [Page 48] not die in him. He that continueth to the Mat. 10. 32 end, saith our Sauiour, shall be saued. And againe, Be faithfull vnto death and I will giue thee the crowne of life: which I speak Apoc. 2. 10 not, as though a man that truly belee­ueth in Christ, and is once ingrafted into him by a true faith, could totally or fi­nally fall away from faith, or be cut off from Christ; for how can that stand with the maine promise of the Gospell, assu­ring Mar. 16. 16. Iohn 3. 16. saluation, and consequently perse­uerance to saluation, to euery one that doth truly beleeue? but to this end, that he which supposeth that hee standeth, may take heed lest he fall. And that hee which 1. Cor. 10. 12. thinketh he is in Christ, because hee is in the visible Church, which in respect of the faithfull who are therein, is a part on the bodie of Christ, may labour not on­ly by a true faith to be ingrafted into the inuisible Church, which is the mystica [...] bodie of Christ: but also to gather in­fallible tokens to himselfe of his bein [...] in Christ. For many bee in the visib [...] Church, which be not of the Church i [...] uisible; and such are subiect to defe ction, or falling away; and the Lo [...] [Page 49] fuffereth them to fall away, that it may appeare they are not of vs, 1. Iohn 2. 19. 1. Ioh. 2. 19. There be many branches which seeme to be in the vine, which is Christ, Ioh. 15. Iohn 15. but being rotten branches haue no vniō with him by faith, nor communion with him by the holy Ghost, though they be ingrafted into the Church the visible bodie of Christ. For as Cions ingrafted which doe not take, or rotten boughes of a tree which being one with the tree in shew, and as the Philosopher saith, mathematice by continuitie or vnion of termes, are not one indeed and natural­ly by the vnitie of the forme, which is the vegetatiue soule as it were of the plant: so are they in Christ externallie and sacramentally, but spiritually and in truth they are not. And such bran­ches, as our Sauiour saith, must looke to Ioh. 15. 6. be cut off and cast into the fire.

As therefore wee doe now perswade our selues that wee be in Christ, so let vs be carefull, as our Sauiour exhorteth vs, Ioh. 15. 4. 7. to abide in him, yea and to grow in him. For if any man professing himselfe to be in Christ, and by his being in him to [Page 50] be freed and washed from his sinnes, shall fall away from Christ, and with the sow that was washed shall returne as it were to his wallowing in the mire; the latter end of such a one shall bee 2. Pet. 2. 20. 22. Ezec. 18. 24 worse than his beginning. If a righteous man (saith the Prophet, speaking of him according to the outward appearance, that hee might teach vs in like sort to speake of men according to the iudge­ment of charitie) shall turne away from his righteousnes and commit iniquitie, do­ing according to all the abominations of the wicked, his former righteousnes shall not bee remembred, but hee shall die in his sinnes.

And that wee may abide in Christ to the end, let vs labour to bee vpright and sound Christians, beleeuing in Christ by faith vnfained, walking vprightly be­fore God and men. For vprightnes hat [...] euermore the priuilege of perseuerance For though hypocrites which build vp­on the sand, being hearers onely an [...] Matth. 7. 26 not doers of the word, doe fall away i [...] the time of triall: yet the sound Chri­stian, who liueth according to his pro­fession, [Page 51] and hath built vpon the rocke, Matt. 7. 24. with no surges or assaults of temptation can bee vtterly ouerthrowne. Though the seed which fell either amōg thornes (whereby is meant the heart of the worldly professor) is choked, or on the rockie ground (whereby is meant the Luk. 18. 13. 14. 15. secure, hard, and impenitent heart of the hypocrite and temporarie profes­sor, couered as it were with the shallow mould of an outward profession) is wi­thered away in time of heate; yet that which falleth into an vpright heart, as it were good ground, is neither choked, nor withered, but bringeth foorth fruite with patience.

The way then to die in Christ, is to liue in him by a true and vnfained faith, which purifieth the heart, and worketh by loue, walking vprightly, as it becom­meth the members of Christ in the sin­cere profession of his faith; so shall we in the end of our life attaine to the end of our faith which is the saluation of our 1. Pet. 1. 9. soules.

Many there are which could be con­tent to die in Christ, who care not to [Page 52] liue in him. Many with Balaam desire to Num. 23. 10 die the death of the righteous, but leade the life of the wicked. But be not decei­ued, it is an old saying, [...] Chrysost. [...], of an euill life cōmonly there is an euill end. Presume not that thou shalt die in Christ, vnlesse first thou liue in him. In all the Scripture there is but one example of a man who after a wic­ked Luke 23. life was conuerted at the houre of his death. One there is, that men should not then despaire; and but one, that they should not before hand presume. And forasmuch as nothing is either more certaine than death, or more vn­certaine than the time thereof; it beho­ueth vs carefully to prouide, whiles wee haue time, to be in Christ; that death, whensoeuer it commeth, may finde vs in him. Let our life be a preparation for death, and let this be the chiefest care of our life, that wee may be found in Christ at the time of our death. This life, as our Philip. 3. 9. Sauiour saith, is the day wherein we are to worke, afterward is the night when John 9. 4. no man can worke or turne vnto God, but as the tree falleth, so it lieth; and as Eccl. 11. 3. [Page 53] the day of death doth leaue vs, the day of iudgement shall finde vs. This there­fore must teach vs not to deferre from day to day our repentance towards God and faith in Iesus Christ, but presently whiles it is called to day to turne vnto Hebr. 3. the Lord, that wee may bee in Christ to day before to morow, because wee haue none assurance that wee shall liue vntill the morow.

And so much may suffice to haue spo­ken of the first and chiefe point, namely who they are, which heere bee pronoun­ced blessed, to wit, they which die in the Lord. Now are we in the second place briefely to consider, what this blessed­nes is, and wherein it doth consist. This is shewed in the words following, that they rest from their labours, and their workes follow with them. So that their happines is two-fold, first priuatiue, in that they rest from their labors and mo­lestations, (for there is a sabba [...]sme or rest, reserued to the people of God, Hebr. 4. 9. whereof the Sabbath was a type.) For then the Lord shall wipe a­way Apoc. 21. 4. & 7. 17. all teares from their eyes, and they [Page 54] shall be no more subiect to sinne, or the punishment therof, as sicknes, weaknes, mortalitie, labour, wearines, troubles, wrongs, death. Death is the hauen and the end of al misery vnto them. But their happines is not meerely priuatiue, like that of beasts, which after death haue no more sense of paine, (where, by the way we are to note, that the state of the beast when it dieth, is better then of the wic­k [...]d, who die in their sinnes) but it is also positiue. For their workes, that is, the re­ward of their faith and obedience, [...] God shall cro [...]ne with euerlasting hap­pines, shall [...] [...]th [...]hem. This doth teach vs, that [...] [...] good [...] cannot merit [...]ny thing [...] t [...]e [...] [...] God (as Christ himselfe hath t [...]ld [...] Luke 17.) and [...]ch [...] eternall [...] Luk. 17. 10. Rom. 6. 23. and therefore [...] are not said to go be­fore our acceptation to eternall [...] as [...] cause, but follow as fruits: yet the Lo [...] of his free grace, according to his pro­mise, doth plentifully reward them. The consideration wherof, as it must encou­rage vs all to be fruitfull in good works knowing that our labour shall not been [...] Cor. 15. 58 [Page 55] vaine in the Lord, so especially those, whō the Lord hath enriched with his bles­sings, whether temporall or spirituall; that they be rich in good workes, laying vp 1 Tim. 6. 18. 19. for themselues a good foundation, against the time to come, that they may obtaine e­ternall life.

Againe, whereas it is said, that the workes of the faithfull, do accompanie them after death, this sheweth, that al­though death strippe vs of all temporall things yet it doth not bereaue vs of our workes, but bringeth vs the reward of them. And that when all our friends and followers, and all other worldly, either delights or commodities doe fa [...]e and forsake vs: y [...] our workes doe follow with vs, to our [...]all comfort. Which should make vs to esteeme the keeping of faith and a good conscience, aboue all the things of this world.

Now what this reward is, which God hath prepared for these that die in Christ, though neither the eye hath seene, 1. Cor. 2. 9. nor the eare heard, nor the heart of man conceiued, yet thus much we may gather out of the Scriptures, that it shall consist [Page 56] in eternall and most perfect glory, and gladnes. The glory standing partly in the excellency of those heauenly gifts, wherewith they shall be adorned, being in respect thereof, like vnto the Angels, and renewed perfectly according to the glorious image of God, yea, made con­formable to Christ our head, in such a proportion of glory, as his seueral mem­bers 1. Iohn 3. 2. bee capable of; and partly in the fruition of heauenly blessings, as the possession of heauen, and all heauenly good things, the fellowship of the bles­sed Saints and Angels, and that, which is all in all, the enioying of God himselfe, who is the chiefest good, In whose pre­sence there is fulnesse of ioy, and at whose right hand there be pleasures for euermore. Psal. 16. 11

And that is the second thing, their e­ternall ioy and gladnes arising from that glory. For as they shall be most happie, so shall they reioyce in it, with vn speak­able and endlesse comfort, and in the sense thereof, shall euermore bee stirred vp with wonderfull alacrity, to glorifie God.

In expectation of this happie hope, [Page 57] we are to liue soberly, iustly, and holily Titus 2. 13. in this present world. For if wee set this ioy before, as the marke towards which we contend, we will not suffer our selues to be withdrawne from our obedience to God, neither by any worldly desires, which in comparison hereof, are to bee esteemed as meere vanities, nor by any terrors of the world, which, in respect of Rom. 8. 18. Hebr. 12. 2. the ioy that is set before vs, wee are to contemne.

The third thing remaineth, that is, the time when this blessednes doth belong to them, [...], saith he, thenceforth, that is, from the time of their death, and so forward, for presently they rest from their labours, and their workes follow: he doth not say [...] after them, but [...] with them. This therefore is a most euident place, not only against wandering of soules, but especially a­gainst Purgatory & prayer for the dead. For whereas they obiect, that the place is vnderstood of Martyrs only, I haue be­fore plainely proued, that it is generally vnderstood of al those that die in Christ, whether as Martyrs, or as Confessors, [Page 58] who neither by the tyranny nor fraud o [...] Antichrist can bee drawne away from Christ. For these being in Christ, & con­sequently made partakers of his merits, Christ hath by his blood, so fully bo [...] purged their soules, that they shall no [...] need the fire of Purgatory (which wa [...] deuised to purge mens purses, rathe [...] then their soules,) and also satisfied the iustice of God for their sinnes, that as o­ther purgations, so other satisfaction [...] are blasphemies against Christ, our a­lone, all sufficient and most perfect Sa­uiour. But in this text there be three eui­dences against the Papists. First, in th [...] he saith they are blessed from thenc [...] forth, forthwith, immediately, and no [...] many yeeres, much lesse many thousan [...] yeeres after, as the Pope in his Antichr [...] stian pardons would beare vs in han [...] Secondly, they are said to rest, or to b [...] eased (as the word signifieth) from th [...] [...] labours, and therefore are not at all to [...] mented in Purgatory, which as the [...] selues reach, burnes as hotte as the fi [...] of hel. Thirdly it is said, that their wor [...] that is, the reward of their faith and obe­dience [Page 59] doth accompany them, which reward, I hope they will not say, is the fi [...] of Purgatory. And further obserue, that he doth not say, other mens works are to bee sent after them, to redeeme them forsooth out of Purgatory, but their owne workes follow with them

Know therefore for certaintie, that Purgatorie is but a fire seruing for the Popes kitchin: and prayer for the dead is but preying vpon the liuing, being a meere deuice seruing for the mainte­nance of the Popish, that is to say, Anti­christian clergie.

Thus haue you heard the explication of this text, and the vses which the seue­rall branches thereof affoord, there re­maineth in a word the application and vse which is to bee made of the whole text, both in generall concerning all those that die in the Lord, and in parti­cular concerning this our brother, who who is asleepe in Christ.

For seeing the dead which die in the Lord, are presently blessed, because they rest from their labours, &c. this therfore doth reach vs, that death, of a Christian [Page 60] man who is in Christ, is not to be feare [...] as an euill thing, but rather to be wishe [...] and desired, because it bringeth happi­nesse with it. For to him that is in Christ death is aduantage, in that he changeth a life mortall and miserable, for a life, blessed and immortall; chaungeth the companie of sinfull men, for the com­panie of God, his Saints and Angels▪ changeth a sinfull and miserable condi­tion in this valey of teares, with a mo [...] blessed and glorious estate in heauen wherein there is no possibilitie of falling either into sin or miserie. And this mu [...] also moue vs to labour for assured testi­monies, that wee bee in Christ, that w [...] may desire euen to be dissolued, and [...] bee with Christ. For hee that doth no [...] feare, but rather desire death, he will n [...] Philip 1. 23 for feare of any creature be withdrawn either from his faith or obedience. F [...] the worst thing which any creatur [...] [...] threaten, is death. And that is it whi [...] he desireth, especially if it be not only [...] Christ but also for him.

Againe, if the dead which die in t [...] Lord be thencefoorth blessed, &c. [...] [Page 61] are not wee to mourne for them which are dead in Christ, as in respect of them, left wee may seeme to enuie their hap­pines. For though their bodies be com­mitted to the earth, yet are wee no more to mourne thereat, than the hus­band man mourneth for committing his seed corne to the earth, because they, as well as the seede, hauing purified in the 1. Cor. 15. 36 42. 43. 44. earth, will come vp against the great haruest with plentifull increase, when this corruptible shall put on incorrup­tion, and this mortall shall put on im­mortalitie. 1. Cor. 15. 53 And as touching their soule, that, so soone as it departeth from the bodie, is by the holy Angels conueied into the bosome of Abraham, the place of heauenly blisse, where they haue the fruition of God, and fellowship of the blessed Saints and Angels.

This opinion, which the holy Ghost doth here teach vs in general, to cōceiue of all those that die in the Lord; Christi­an charity bindeth vs to entertaine, con­cerning this our worthy brother depar­ted in the faith of Christ. For if all they which die in the Lord are happie and [Page 62] blessed, and our assured hope be, that he died in the Lord; why should not wee conceiue assured hope, that his estate is happie and blessed? Now that charitie bindeth vs th [...] to con [...]iue of him, I wil make it manifest. For besides that there is no euidence to the contrarie, and cha­ritie euermore iudgeth the best; we haue also sufficient euidence, whereupon to conclude, according to the iudgement of Charitie: that hee died in the Lord. [...] say according to the iudgement of cha­ritie, for as the iudgement of certaine [...] belongeth vnto God, so the iudgemen [...] of charitie, vnto vs. Let vs therefore take a briefe view of such fruits (according to which alone being charitablie interpre­ted, true charitie doth iudge) I say, o [...] such fruits and signes as haue appeare [...] both in the time of his health, and also [...] the time of his sicknes, vntill his death.

For whereas there are three thing [...] which euery Christian must be careful [...] in this present life, namely, that hee li [...] soberly in respect of himself, religiou [...] towards God, and iustly among me [...] Titus 2. 12. the first (I hope) will be confessed of [...] [Page 63] that knew him, that hee was a sober, graue, discreet, frugall, temperate, and chast man. And as for his religion to­wards God, first I say, though hee were borne in the time of Popery: notwith­standing he hath professed vnto me, and to others in my hearing: that from his youth he hath been perswaded, that the Pope is Antichrist, and that he abhorred the Idolatrous superstitions, and dam­nable doctrines of the Church of Rome; against both which I haue heard him by way of discourse inueigh seriously and to good purpose. But as hee was no Pa­pist, so no neuter or nullifidian, which is too common a fault among the politi­cians of this world; but a professed Pro­testant and open professor of the true faith of Christ, that is to say, one that did Reuel. 14. 1. beare the marke of God in his forehead, as the faithfull are described in the be­ginning of this chapter. And this (belo­ued) was no small fauour of God vouch­safed vnto him. For as heere they are pronounced blessed, who die in the true faith of Christ, and not in the religion of [Page 64] Antichrist: so Reuel. 20. 6 they are pro­nounced blessed and holy, who haue their Reuel. 20. 6. part in the first resurrection, whereby as they rise from other sinnes and corrupti­ons: so especially from the graue of An­tichristian, that is, Popish pollutions: as the context or coherence in both places sheweth. Neither was hee a backeward professor (as many are, who haue no care of religion:) but manifested his for­wardnes by diuers good signes. As first, by frequenting the holy exercises of re­ligion abroad, and hauing them duely performed at home. Secondly, by lo­uing, reuerencing, and countenancing faithfull Ministers & Preachers of Gods Word. For this I doubt not to auouch, that the religion and deuotion of me [...] towards God, may be discerned by n [...] one signe better, then by the respect which they haue to Gods Ministers. Fo [...] as our Sauiour saith, he that receiueth y [...] Ioh. 13. 20. Luk. 10. 16. receiueth me, and he that desp [...]seth you, de­spiseth me. For as he that despiseth a Mi­nister in respect of his calling, doth eui­dently bewray himselfe, neither to ha [...] [Page 65] any grace, nor yet to desire any, because the grace which either hee hath or desi­reth, ordinarily is procured by the Mini­stery, as I could shew at large; so he that loueth and reuerenceth a Minister, for his calling sake, (as this worthy Knight did,) he doth shew, that he hath found the Ministery of the Word, to bee the power of God to his saluation.

Of his loue to other my brethren in the Ministery, the great concourse of Ministers at this present, to honor his fu­nerall, is a sufficient euidence. As tou­ching my selfe, I do with thankfulnesse, acknowledge the greatnes of his loue manifested towards me diuers waies: wherein he may seeme to haue followed the graue aduise of the Greek Orator, in Isocrates ad Daemonicū: [...]. that he hath made me to inherit that loue & friendship, which from a child, he did euer beare to my father. Third­ly, his forwardnes appeared, by louing and fauouring those that were honest and religious, and hampering those who were otherwise disposed; who now perhaps will vtter their spleene, and by [Page 66] their slanderous speeches proue, that [...] he honored, and loued those that feared God; so such vile and naughty persons as themselues, were odious in his sight. Which is one good note of the child of God, as the holy Ghost witnesseth Psal. 15. 4.

Beloued in the Lord, it is no small to­ken of a member of Christ, when a man loueth the members of Christ, for their godlines and vertues sake. For they their are of the world, hate those that bee in Ioh. 15. 19. Christ. And as a wicked man is an abomi­nation Prou. 29. 27 to the godly; euen so, a godly man is an abomination to the wicked. Iohn there­fore setteth this downe as a special signe: hereby (saith he) we know that we are tran­slated 1. Ioh. 3. 14. from death to life, because wee loue the brethren.

I hasten to his cariage among men: and first, in his dealings, as a priuate mā, wherein he was (I speake of his generall course) a strict obseruer of truth in hi [...] words, of iustice in his deeds, of fidelity in his promises. But chiefely conside [...] him, in the discharge of his calling [Page 67] For a mans calling is that stāding, wher­in God hath placed him, to exercise his faith and obedience, that therein hee may glorifie God, and doe good to men. Consider his priuate calling, as he was an housholder, or head of his fami­lie. And therein acknowledge with me, his great loue and fidelity to his wife, his fatherly prouidence towards his chil­dren and nephewes: his great wisedome and care in gouerning his seruants, and preseruing them from those horrible vi­ces (which as they be vsuall now adaies, in great families, so no doubt, will pull downe the fearefull iudgements of God vpon them) I meane swearing and swag­gering: and finally, his goodnesse and bountie towards those, whom he found diligent, honest, and frugall.

But his publique calling, as he was a Magistrate, and gouernour in the Com­mon-wealth, doth now call me vnto it. Wherein, all (I doubt not) who did not mislike him for his iust seueritie, either a­gainst themselues, or such as were neere vnto them, wil freely acknowledge, that [Page 68] he was a very good Iusticer, and a very notable good Common-wealthes man, both for his sufficiencie and wisedome, (which was great) and also for his great zeale, and good affection towards his countrie; and couragious resolution, to shew himselfe forward in good causes. The truth whereof, if we did not suffici­ently see, whilest wee enioyed him: I dout we shall too well feele, by wanting him. And thus you haue heard of his so­brietie, and gouernment of himselfe, of his faith, and religion towards God, and of his iustice & charity towards men. In all which, you are not to vnderstand me, as though I went about to maintaine, that he had no infirmities, or that he ne­uer failed in any particulars: for alas, is many things we offend all; and highly i [...] Iames 3. 2. that man to be commended, whose ge­nerall course is such as I haue described. Yea, happy, and thrice happy is that man, who hath a setled and vnfaine [...] purpose, of obseruing those duties, of so­brietie, iustice, and pietie; though besid [...] his purpose, he faile in many particula [...] [Page 69] through infirmitie: for [...] a one, no doubt, is the true child of God.

And as these signes did shew, that he liued in the Lord: so the same added to his demeanor, in the time of his sicknes, will proue that he died in the Lord. I wil begin with his Christian charitie, in for­giuing those that had offended him, in giuing satisfaction to such as thought themselues wronged, in seeking to bee reconciled, with such as he might thinke did beare any grudge towards him, which being considered, together with the greatnes, both of his mind and state, will seeme no small argument of great Christianity. And herein he did acknow­ledge (as he had cause) the good proui­dence of God towards him, in giuing him occasion whilest he was aliue, and able to answere for himselfe, to cleare himselfe, (as to my vnderstanding hee did) of diuers imputations, which other­wise might perhaps haue proued scan­dalous after his death.

No lesse commendable was his Chri­stian pietie towards God, shewing it [Page 70] selfe in the time of his sicknes, not onely in the exercises of religion, as often hea­ring of the word preached, receiuing the Sacrament more than once to assure him of his vnion and communion with Christ, daily inuocation of the name of God: but also in approouing his faith and patience, being by a long and sharp sicknesse so throughly tried. In respect whereof I may not forget his behauiour at two especiall times; the one a weeke before his death, when as his speech be­ing taken from him, hee supposed the time of his dissolution to bee at hand. And therefore minding to prepars him­selfe for death, he calleth by signes for inke and paper, and (as hee could) wri­teth the names of diuers Ministers, and some other his faithfull friends, whom he would haue sent for, that they might bee both assistants vnto him by the [...] prayer and godly counsaile in the ago­nie of death, as also witnesses of hi [...] faithfull departure. But before the [...] came, it pleased GOD to restore h [...] speech; whereby to his owne and the [...] [Page 71] comfort, he made a notable confession of his faith; which also he then sealed, by the receipt of the Sacrament. Againe, not long before his speech began to faile him the second and last time, hee deliuered (as many times hee had done before) diuers good and godly spee­ches. Among the former, I remember one argument which he vsed to comfort himselfe, Christ Iesus (saith he) who was my Sauiour, he and no other shall be my Iudge. Among the latter, and indeede one of the last that I could vnderstand, he professed his vndoubted faith & assu­red hope of saluatiō, but (as he said) tru­sting only to the mercies of God in Christ Iesus my Sauiour; and in that faith as we neede not doubt, he ended his life, or as the Scripture speaketh, he fell asleepe; for such indeede was the manner of his death. All which premisses being weigh­ed in the ballance of charitie, wee may bee bold to conclude according to the iudgement of charitie, that hee is in the number of those, whom the holy Ghost in this place pronounceth blessed. [Page 72] Wherefore, though wee haue iust cause to mourne in respect of our selues, as namely his graue and vertuous Ladie, that the Lord hath taken from her so lo­uing and kinde an husband; his ne­phewes, that they be depriued of so wise and prouident a grandfather; his wel­willers, that we are berest of so good a friend; the countrie, that it hath lost so prudent and carefull a Iusticer, and so good a commonwealths man, as I said: but yet so, as that with meekenes and humilitie wee submit our selues to the gracious prouidence of God our hea­uenly father, giuing him leaue to call whom and when it pleaseth him: yet in respect of him wee haue little cause to mourne, but great cause to be thankfull vnto God for him: In that after so ma­ny fauours which it pleased the Lord t [...] vouchsafe vnto him throughout ye whole course of his life: hee hath been now pleased, to receiue him into the numbe [...] of those whom the holy Ghost heere pronounceth blessed. The Lord for h [...] mercies sake grant, that wee after th [...] [Page 73] example of all the faithfull departed, may be carefull to liue in the Lord Ie­sus by a true and a liuely faith; that li­uing in him, wee may die in him; and dying in him, may be found in him at the resurrection; that rising in him, we may be glorified with him by the frui­tion of God himselfe the chiefest good: To which most gracious and most glo­rious God, the Father, the Sonne, and the holy Ghost, be all praise, ho­nour and glorie, both now and for euer, Amen.


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