THE VVORLDES RESVRRECTION, OR The generall calling of the Iewes,

A familiar Commentary vpon the eleuenth Chapter of Saint Paul to the Romaines, accord­ing to the sence of Scripture, and the consent of the most iudicious interpreters, wherein aboue fiftie notable questions are soundly answered, and the particular doctrines, reasons and vses of euery verse, are profitably and plainly deliuered.

By THOMAS DRAXE Minister of the word of God.

AT LONDON Printed by G. Eld, for Iohn Wright, and are to be sold at his shop neere Christ Church gate. Anno. 1608.

To the Right Honorable and most vertuous Lady, the Lady LVCIE Countesse of Bedford: grace and peace, with increase of all holynesse and happinesse.

THe wisdom, power, and prouidence of God, as it doth (right Honoura­ble) most eminently and admira­bly appeare and shine forth in the frame, preseruation and gouern­ment of the vniuersall world, and of all things therein conteined: so in the mystery and matter of predestination, in the illumination and blinding, saluation and condemnation both of Iewes and Gentiles, it is most deepe, yea & past mans found­ing out. For who can comprehend the depth of Gods councell, or render any particular reason of it? why God, who had amongst all the nations of the earth elected and selected the Iewes to be his onely pecu­liar and beloued people, with whom he made such a singular couenant of mercy and saluation, to whom appertained the adoption, Rom 9. v. 4. & 5. the glory, the lawe, the ser­uice of God, of whom are the Fathers, and of whom (concerning the flesh) Christ came who is God blessed for euer-more, should for so many hundred years, euen from the Apostles preaching vnto our dayes, gene­rally cutt and cast them off from being his people and Church? and by occasion of their vnbeliefe and desertion, haue in their roome and stead, so generally in all countries and kingdoms of the world, adopted and substituted vs Gentiles,Rom. 11.17. Deut. 32.21. Ephes. 2.12. who formerly were no­thing but Wilde Oliues, no people, not beloued, strangers from the Couenants of promise, without Christ, without hope, without God in the world?

[Page]The reason (I say) and mouing cause of Gods decree and councel, is vnserchable and past finding out; yet if we duly examine and consider the euent, and exe­cution of it, we cannot but discerne & acknowledge that God hath most iustly reuenged himselfe vpon the Iewes & powred out his wrath vpon them to the vtmost. For before Christ his incarnation, they often misused,1 Thess. 2. ver. 15▪ and 16. derided, persecuted, & slew Gods prophets, & since they refused & murdered the Lord of glory, they forbad his Apostles to preach to vs Gentiles, they persecuted and killed them, and from that time to this present houre, cease not to blaspheme & spi [...] out their venim against Christ his church, his gospel and his seruants. And yet, (notwithstanding all this) is it not a mistery to bee wondred at and adored, that God hath in all ages of the Church, chosen & reserued to himself, and called to Christ a remnant of them, which is vndoubtedly, a fore-runner and ar­gument of their generall conuersion not far off. Se­condly it is a maruelous worke of God, & not with­out his mistery, that the Iewes (howsoeuer wandring and dispersed in al countries almost,) should stil con­tinue such a distinct and vnconfounded nation, so in­numerable in multitude, and so constant in the keep­ing and obseruing of (as much as they possible may) their ancient lawes, rites, and ceremonies. Thirdly they haue bin in the times of greatest persecutions, when the tirants of the world sought to extinguish, and root out the scriptures (and still are) the faithfull keepers & preseruers of the old testament: & all this may put vs in some good hope of their future calling and conuersion. Lastly God hath (as Saint Paul mani­festly proueth,) made an euident promise of their plenary calling & saluation, when the full number of [Page] vs Gentiles, is (successiuely) come into the church.

Thus seeing their miserable state for the time past, and also at this present, and that a remnant is alway remayning, & the conuersion of the nation of them is dayly expected; we must not passe by so memorable a worke of God without vse & application. By their fall and apostacy wee must not only iustifie, but also tremble & stand in awe of Gods iudgments, feare to offend the diuine Maiesty, and beware least through vnbeleife, contempt of the gospel and profaine secu­rity, we at length attract & draw the like iudgments vpon our selues. Secondly, in that so great a multi­tude of them shalbe againe ingrafted into Christ and beleiue the gospell, we must be so farre from despise­ing them, or scandalizing them by our ill life and ex­ample, & from despairing of their saluation, that we must heartily pray for them, and by our zealous pro­fession and holy life and conuersation study & striue, through the working of the holy Ghost, to reduce them into the right way.

Lastly, Christian Monarches & Magistrates must not only by enacting and execution of seuere lawes, represse their vile and intolerable vsuries, whereby they plague & oppresse many poore Christians, and punish with al sharpnesse their horrible blasphemies against Christ and his gospell, but cause them being vnder their authority & subiection to be by degrees instructed in Christian religion, and for the sooner effecting of it, to compell them to heare the gospell. Then shall the miserable and seduced Iewes bee brought home, the world reuiued, the hearts of Gods people replenished with vnspeakeable ioy, all nations shal glorifie God in Christ, and we shal al in short time be fully & finally, perfected and glorified.

[Page]This is (most noble Lady) the summe and subiect of this small volumne, which hoping that it will bee profitable and comfortable to many, I thought good to publish it, and in many respects mee mouing, to commend the protection and patronage of it, to your Honour.

First your Honour, is zealous, religious, wise, and learned, and alwaies haue beene (and still are) in these regards; illustrious and renowned.

Secondly, you to your greatnesse, ioyne goodnesse▪ to your honor, humilitie; and to your knowledge, Chiristian kindnesse and benigni [...]ie, and therefore you cannot but accept of, iudge of, and read at your leasure, any sound and holesome treatise that direc­teth and furthereth you therein. Lastly, I am so deep­ly obliged and indebted vnto your most noble and religious Parents, and to the honourable, studious, and hopefull Knight your brother, that the signifi­cation of my thankfulnesse doth in equity also belong vnto your Honour.

Wherefore I most humbly beseech you, gratiously to respect my small labours▪ and to make vse of them for your edification. Thus desiring your good accep­tance, and crauing pardon for my boldnesse, I pray the God of heauen to encrease you in all honour and grace, to make you a noble Cedar in his house, a bright Starre in his Church, fruitfull in all good workes, happy & blessed in your good courses, and after ful­nesse of age, faith, and felicitie, to crowne you with euerlasting glory in his heauenly kingdome. Amen.

Your Honours in all duty to be commanded, Thomas Drâx.

CLARISSIMO, Viro & doctrina & pietate prae­stanti, Domino Clementi Throgmortono equiti aurato, gratiam pacem & omnia prospera.

QVanquam, (eques or natissime) quidan [...] pij & eruditi homines, de futura illa generali (que) Iudaica nationis vocatione, propter diuturnam eorum Apostasi [...]m & virulentum contra Christum & Euangelicam veritatem odium, vel desperârunt, vel valdè saltem dubit â­runt: veruntatem Divus Paulus eorum errorem diser­tè damnat, & pluribus & maximi ponderis argumentis plenam Iudoeorum conuersionem sub finem saeculi futu­ram, disputat & euincit.

Primo▪ ipse, cum sit Israelita, suae conuersionis exempl [...], ostendit eos non esse in vniuersum abdicatos, Secundo ex Dei praescientia, id est, praedestinatione & fauore, Deu [...] reliquias quasdam Fidelium sibi semper reseruare, ma­nifestum facit. Tertiò, ex similit [...]dine suorum temporum cum temporibus Eliae, Deum in densissim [...]s ecclesiae tene­bris & corruptissimo illius statu, suos electos habere, alere & conseruare declarat. Quartò, Gentium zelum & sanc­tissimum exemplum, Iudaeos tandem, ad sanctam eorum aemulationem prouocaturum; & ex aduerso, numerosissi­mam illam Iudaeorum vocationem mundum illuminatu­ram, & hominum languescentem fidem exuscitaturam demonstrat. Quintò, Apostolus vbi (que) (per occasionem) proprium ministerium exornando aliquis ex illis conuer­tere & seruare contendeb [...]t. Sextò, Dei foedus cum Israe­litarum patribus initum, & eius vocationem & dona (in [Page] Electis) perpetuitatem & immutabilitatem induere testa­tur Septimo, quum vocatio & salu [...] omnium Electorum, ex sola miserecordia Dei pendeat, Iudaeos aeque ac Gen­tes seruari posse persuadet. Octauo, ex De [...] omnipotentia, corū vocationis spem & probabilitatem colligit. Postremò, innumerabiles Iudoeos, post plenitudinem Gentium in Ecclesiam ingressam, Euangelium amplexuros, euiden­tissimis scripturis confirmat.

Haec cum ita se habeant, ea [...]d institutionem & vsum nostram transferamus. Primò hinc discimus (quemad­modum fusius in Epistola ad splendidissimam comitissam docuimus) Deo licere pro liberrima sua voluntate, & absolutissima potestate Eligere, reijcere, & indurare vel conuertere quòscun (que) voluerit. Secundò puram Dei mi­sericordiam in Gentium vocatione elucere, at feueram eus institiam in communi Iudaeorum abiectione tantùm conspici. Quapropter Dei gratiam gratis animis praedice­ [...]u [...], digne Euangelio ambulemus, Dei iudi [...]ra time a­ [...]s, & a Iudaeorum [...]ncredulitat [...], horrendis blasphe­ [...]js, vsuris, contemp [...] Christi, reliquis (que) peccatis abhor­rendo; caneamus. Vltimo, nostris assiduis & ardentissi­mis precibus corum conuersionem promoueamus, & syn­cerae doctrinae & obedientia luce, eos lucrifacere studea­nius. Cùm igie [...] haec materies (vir nobilissime) tam sit ad­mirabilis & omnibus Christian [...]s tam necessaria, censui in publicum emittere, & tuae etiam non tam erudi [...]ae cen­surae quàm clementi patrocinio committere. Quum [...]nim Tu, propter religionis puritat [...]m, Theologiae accuratam cognitionem, & Dialectica & Philosophicae scientia prae­stantiam, [...]is, ornatissima in Dei Ecclesia, Cedrus ▪ in fami­liae tuae ordinatissima disciplinâ Dauid & Iosua, & in nostro Warwicensi agro publicae [...]ustitiae lumen, non potes quin praecepta, moni [...]a, & consilia, eò dirigentia, laeto & [Page] libenti amnio excipias. Deni (que) cùm pater tuus antiqu [...] nobilitatis & beatissimae memoriae vir, iam (que) in Coelis triumphans; me in vita suâ, summâ beneuolentiâ com­plexus sit: confidò certè, te cùm sis eius non solùm bono­rum, sed etiam eximiarum virtutum haeres iustissimus, velle me, non modo charitate quadam complecti, verum etiam lucubrationes meas vtcun (que) approbare. Quod pro­fectò expectans & humillime expetens, hic dicendi qui­dem, sed tui colendi finem numquam facio.

Iehoua opt: Max: te omnibus externis & internis dotibus & ornamentis cumulet & perpoliat, tuos pios conatus prouehat, & tibi, tuis (que) longaeuam in terris faeli­citatem, & tandem aeternum in Coelis gaudium & triumphum largiatur. Couentriae. 1608.

Tuae dignitatis, studiosissimus THOMAS DRAXE, verb [...] D [...]i Minister.

A Table conteyning the number of the Questions, which are, by occasion pro­pounded and resolued.

1. CAn Gods couenant with his Elect bee made frustrate through mans vnbeleife. Neg.
page 2
2 Whether that Gods fore-knowledge doth distinguish the elect from the Reprobate. affir.
pag 3
3 Whether that the idolatrous Iewes in Elias his time sinned in demolishing altars, seeing that they were set vp in pla­ces vnlawful. affir.
4 Whether that the Church can erre in matter of faith and doctrine. affir.
5 Whether that the Church of God doth euer faile vpon earth? neg.
p. 11
6 Whether that God had any church or people in the darke mist of Popery? affir.
p. 12
7 How our forefathers were then taught and saued?
p. 13
8 Why God doth many times cause his militant church to be inuisible?
p. 14
9 Whether a Protestant may dissemble his religion and so go to idoll seruice? neg.
10 May a man seeke for iustification and saluation and not obtaine it?
p, 23
11 Doth God harden the Reprobate? Distinct.
12 How doth God harden the wicked?
13 How can God be said to blinde the Reprobate, seeing that he offereth the meanes of illumination to many of them?
p. 28
14 Whether that Dauid, Paul, Elias did sinne or not in vsing imprecations against wicked men? neg.
p. 32
15 Whether that wee may lawfully vse imprecations and pray against Gods and our enemies? Affir per dis­tictionem.
p, 33
16 In what respects and with what cautions wee are to pray against our enemies?
17 Can the true church of God, and the members of it fall a­way from the fauour and grace of God? neg.
p. 40
[Page]18 Are they excused before God that by their vnbeleife and vnthankefulnesse occasion other mens conuersion? neg.
19 Can the fall of the Iewes which is an euill, be an accidental cause or occasion of the conuersion of the Gentiles? affir.
p. 44
20 Whether that a minister can bee properly said to conuert soules? affir. per distinc.
p. 46
21 How can the calling of the Iewes bee the reuiuing of the world seeing that Christ shall hardly finde faith on the earth at his second comming?
p. 50
22 Whether grace and holinesse can come by generation and succession? neg.
p. 51
23 Whether the Iewes be not in many prerogatiues more ex­celent then vs Gentiles? affi.
p. 52
24 Can the true members of the Catholike church become infidels? neg.
p. 56
25 Who they be that fall away from the church and the com­munion of it?
p. 57
26 How are men engraffed into the church?
27 Is or ought a man to doubt of Gods fauour and loue or no? neg.
p. 65
28 Can [...]eare, and assurance of saluation consist together? aff. per dist.
p. 66
29 Can any man be said to be a naturall branch of the church, seeing that all are sinners and children of wrath by na­ture. Aff. per distinct.
30 What persons fal away from the fellowship of the church?
p. 67
31 In what manner and by what inducements doe men fall away?
32 Is not God changeable in his couenant and promises, see­ing that he changed his former bountifulnesse towards the Iewes into rigour and seuerity? neg.
p. 77
33 Can the elect wholy loose or bee depriued of faith and grace? neg.
34 Is predestination conditionall depending vpon mans be­leife or vnbeleife? neg.
p. 78
[Page]35 When is likely to bee the time of the Iewes conuersion?
p. 88
36 Whether they shall euer recouer the holy land? neg.
37 What the fulnesse of the Gentles doth signifie?
p. 89
38 Whether this fulnesse be yet come in or not, or any other countries and kingdomes are (in probability) yet to bee called and enlightned?
p. 90
39 What is ment by all Israell, whether the Iewes, Gentiles or both?
40 Whether the comming of the Deliuerer vnto them, must be vnderstood [...]o [...]ily or spiritually?
p. 91
41 Can one and the same people be truly said to be beloued of God yet his enemies? aff. in diuers generations.
p. 102
42 Is any man called and conuerted by reason of his parents merites and worthines? neg.
43 Can the giftes and graces of Gods spirit in the elect bee taken away? neg.
p. 103
44 Doth God euer repent? dist.
45 Is God any cause of vnbeleife in man? dist.
p. 109
46 Are all men by nature equally guiltie and prone vnto c­uill? aff.
47 How then commeth it to passe that one naturall man is outwardly better then another?
48 whether there be any vniuersall election or grace? neg.
p. 110
49 If Gods waies bee vnsercheable how then are we com­manded to serch the scriptures?
p. 116
50 Hath not God, reueiled all his will and counsailes to Pro­phets and Apostles? neg.
51 Why are wee commanded to giue glory to God, seeing that we can adde nothing to his perfection?
p. 117

The worlds resurrection.
Romans. Chapt. XI.

I Demaund then, hath God cast away his people? God for­bid: for I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Beniamin.

God hath not cast away his people which hee knew before? know yee not what the Scripture saith of Elias, how hee com­muneth with God against Israell, saying.

Lord they haue killed thy Prophets, and digged downe thine Altars: and I am left alone, and they seeke my life &c.

WHat then (may some repining Iewe ob­iect) hath God, Sense. that is vnchangeable in his decree & couenant, & whose compassions faile not, cast away .i. hath he wholy and vniuersally cast of and excluded from righteousnesse and euerlasting life his people? that is the Israelits or Iewes, for whose faith & preseruation he hath wrought so many miracles, whome hee hath fastned and affianced vnto him-selfe by so sollemne a couenant and by so many pretious promises, & whom he hath enobled and renowned by so many illustrious Patriarches? God forbid .i. farre bee that from any mans thought and ima­gination for it cannot be. For I: also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham of the tribe of Beniamin .i. I by mine owne example can testifie the contrary, for I (notwithstanding I formerly was a Pharisie,1. Tim. 1.13. a Blasphemer, a Persecutor, and an Oppressor) am not cast of, but I am an Israelite, there­fore God hath not cast of all.

God hath not cast of his people whome he knew not before .i. Albeit, God hath generally reiected and cast of the bodie and greatest number of the Iewes that were called, and so deemed in their owne eyes, and in the estimation of the world, by reason of the tenor of Gods couenant and the ceremonies and outward excercises of religion, called [Page 2] (I say) and reputed to bee Gods people; yet those amongst them whom hee knew before .i. whom he prede­st [...]nated to saluation, whom hee acknowledged and ap­proued for his owne, and whom he preuented by his spe­ciall fauour, this people he neuer fayled, nor euer will re­nounce and relinquish.

Know you not what the scripture sayeth of Elias? i. I for resolution of this doubt referre you to the word of God, I hope that you are neither so supine and negligent that you haue not read it, nor so grosse of capacitie that you vnderstand it not; how he maketh request, or intercession vnto God, saying against Israel, i. in how lamentable and zealous maner, he complaineth against them, namely that they were all fallen away from the true seruice of God, vnto the worship of the Idoll Baal. Lord they haue k [...]lled thy Prophets, & digged downe thine altars, i. they haue testi­fied and declared their virulent hatred, rage, and malice, against thee and thy truth, by murthering and massacring all thy holy and sincere Prophets, Priests, Leuites, that by preaching, doctrine, examples and practise, would not as­sent too and applaude, but condemne and oppose them­selues against their idolatry: and as for thine altars erec­ted and builded vp long agoe by these holy Fathers for thine honor, they haue defaced and destroyed them. And I am left alone, i. none else constantly and sincerely ser­ueth God in the kingdome, and none doe, or dare pub­lickly defend thy cause but my selfe, and they seeke my life, that is, they thinke it not sufficient to haue committed all the former insolencies and villanies, but they also, (to make vp the measure of their iniquitie, and in hope to roote out euery true worshipper;) laye waite for my life.

Quest. Is Gods couenant made with his people, by mens vnfaithfulnesse euer abolished and dissolued?

A. No, for it is grounded onely in GOD who is vn­changeable, and not in man, who is a lyar, lighter then vanitie it selfe and therefore not to be trusted.

Secondly, Gods couenant is an euerlasting couenant, [Page 3] and his mercy extendeth vnto a thousand generations, therefore wee must not for the vnbeliefe of some, con­demne all, but rather hope well of all, 1. Cor. 13.7.

Q. Whether doth Gods fore-knowledge in the Scrip­ture, euer make a difference and distinction betweene the Elect and the Reprobate?

A. Yes many times, as in this and other places of holy Scripture, where Gods knowledge and fore-knowledge is taken for the good pleasure of his will, for election and his speciall loue and approbation, as in Rom. 8.29. 1. Pet. 1.2. 2. Tim. 2.19. Psal. 1.6.

Q. Was it a sinne in the idolatrous Iewes, to demolish and pull downe altars, seeing that they were set vp and seated in places where they ought not?

A. Yes, for their minde and intention was wicked; for they did not destroy and ouerthrow the Altars, because they were not set vp onely in Ierusalem, where they ought to be by Gods expresse commandement; but be­cause they would not haue sacrifice done to God (onely.)

Q. Whether that the true Church of God in the my­steries of predestination and other points of faith, may not erre and be deceiued in iudgment?

A. Yes; for first, if that notable. Prophet of the Lord Elias erred in iudgment of the Church,1. Sam. 16. v. 6. & 7. and Samuell the Prophet was deceiued in the choise of Is [...]i his sonnes; yea and the Apostles themselues for a time were ignorant of the Article of the resurrection of Christ and of his king­dome, yea and Peter after that the holy Ghost in the day of Penticost had descended vpon him,Act. 10. v. 13.14.15. knew not that the Iudaicall differences of meates were already abrogated, & thought the Gentiles were not capable of the Gospel, except withall they should admit of and receiue the ce­remonies of Moses his law, if these Prophets & Pillars of the church were ignorant and did erre euen in matter of faith, why may not much more other both Pastors and people erre that haue not, nor neuer in this world shall haue any such extraordinary calling, gifts and illu­mination?

[Page 4]Secondly the Church and the principall members of it, sinne alwaies and are ignorant, yea, and many times erre in the right interpretation of the Scripture, ergo, they may erre in faith. But herein lyeth the difference, first the true Church buildeth her faith onely vpon the Canonicall Scriptures of the Prophets and Apostles, secondly shee neuer stiffely and obstinately (as heretikes doe) main­taineth any error against the maine principles and foun­dations of true religion.

Q. Hath God cast away his people?

Doct. Rom. 3. v. [...].4.A. Gods couenant and sauing promises are neuer made frustrate and voide by the vnbeliefe of the multitude, nay, if there were but one true beleeuer in the whole world, God would not breake his promise and couenant with him for all the rest.Gen. 6. [...]. Gen. 19. Thus Noah and his familie were saued, when all the world besides perished. Thus Lot was preserued when the Sodomites were suddenly de­stroyed with Fire and Brimstone from heauen.Luke. 2. Thus Simeon, Anna, and a few others were saued in a generall corruption of doctrine and manners, and lastly in the my­stie fogge and more then Aegyptiacall darkenesse of Po­perie,Apoc. 11. v. 3. verse. 12. Christs two faithfull witnesses .i. the small number of his true Ministers and constant champions and confes­sors (albeit cruelly massacred by the Romish Antichrist) ascended vp to heauen in a clowde, their enemies seeing them. Nay amongst the vnbeleeuers themselues, and Idolaters in the Papacie, God saueth many by reason of the pro­mise of his couenant pawned with them: hence it is that he conuerteth many before the close and end of this life, whom otherwise hee might iustly leaue in their idolatrie and so destroy them.

Reason. The reason hereof is, first, because the truth and performance of Gods promises resteth in him-selfe, and not in any man whatsoeuer.

Secondly all his sauing gifts are without repentance .i. constant and vnchangeable.

1. Vse. Let vs hang all our saluation on Gods coue­nant and promises onely, for all other helpes and addi­taments [Page 5] of men are vaine, false, and will faile and de­ceaue vs.

2. Vse. Secondly let vs lay hold vpon, and apprehend them all by faith, and so inclose, and impropriate them to our selues: for onely faith doth giue vs right vnto them, yea and infeoffe vs in, and giue vs liuery and seison of them.

I also am an Israelite.

From Pauls example and conclusion, wee learne: That euery godly and beleeuing man, may be fully perswaded and assured by faith,2. Tim. 4.8. that hee is a member of the true church, and that hee shall vndoubtedly bee saued, and therefore it is his dutie firmely to beleeue so much.2. Pet. [...].10. Rom. 8. v. 23. & 38.39.

Reason. The reason is, the promise and assurance here­of is made to the beleeuer & sanctified person. Psal. 15.5. Psal. 24. v. 3.4.5.

Secondly doubting and despaire of Gods loue and fauour, and of our saluation, is a great sinne and against the attributes of Gods truth, mercy, and goodnesse: and if wee doe great wrong and iniurie vnto good and faith­full men, when wee call their loue and loyaltie into que­stion, much more when we doubt of the goodnesse and truth of the infinite and vnchangeable good maiestie of God: And particular doubting distrust and dispaire, is often and much condemned in the Scriptures, Math. 14. v. 31. Luke 12. v. 29. Heb. 12. v. 12. & 13.

Vse. 1. Hereby is condemned that false and comfort­lesse opinion of the Romanists, that depriueth and dis­poileth faith of his forme and of his firme apprehension and application, and maketh it nothing else but a generall beliefe of the promised blessednesse of God, and a giuing of an assent to other mysteries reueiled of God touching the same, which the very diuels, and reprobates haue or may haue.

2. Vse. Wee must labour and striue by the continuall and carefull vse of the word preached, the Sacraments, prayer, and conference, and obseruation of Gods fauours [Page 6] towards vs, both in blessings spirituall and temporall, to attaine vnto the [...] and full assurance of it and hauing once obtained it, to norrish and cherish it by the same meanes.

Q. Hath God forsaken his people whom he knew before?

A. Here Gods fore-knowledge, beeing taken for his speciall fauour, for his Predestination and adoption of them (which is alwaies firme and vnalterable) wee are taught these two conclusions. First that the Predestinati­on and the Election of Gods Saints is firme, certaine and vnmoueable, and can neuer be lost, and that not onely in Gods decree, but also in their owne sence and feeling Rom. 8.33. Tit. 1.1. Rom. 9.11. Rom. 11.7.2. Pet. 1.10. For it is a foundation that cannot bee shaken.Math. 16. ver. 18 Secondly it is grounded vpon the rocke and therefore the gates and power of hell cannot preuaile against it.

Vse. It checketh the Papists who make predestination mutable and vncertaine, and so would despoile and dis­arme vs of the maine ground of all comfort.

Whom he hath fore-knowne.

In that here the cause why God doth neuer finally re­iect or forsake his people, is onely ascribed to his fore-knowledge. 1. to the pleasure of his good will,Doctr. Rom. 9, v [...]. 11 inward fauour and eternall predestination; it excludeth and re­moueth all mans merites, and all outward dignities, pre­rogatiues and excellencies what-soeuer, from beeing any cause of it.

Tim▪ 3.4 &: 5And no maruaile, for if man (though regenerate) cannot, in respect of his finite and sinfull nature merite ought at Gods hands, hauing a being both by nature and grace, much lesse could he merite ought before hee had any be­ing or existence at all.

Vse. Ergo, seeing there is no cause of glorying in vs, or any outward ornament, and seeing nothing mooued God to elect vs, but onely his meere mercy and fauour, let vs ascribe and returne with thankfull hearts all the glory and praise, thereof to him, to whom alone it apper­taineth.

Know yee not what the scripture saith of Elias?

In that it is here presupposed, (if not granted) that the Iewes to whom Paul especially addresseth his speach, (for by an Apostrophe hee afterwards speaketh to the Gentiles, from the 13. verse to the 25.) were most ready and expert in the scriptures; we are aduertised how pro­fitable, nay,Doctr. how necessary the knowledge and vnder­standing of them is; for therevnto are we referred in all our doubts, controuersies, and difficulties, for resolution, Isai. 8.20. Luke 16.28. & 31. Ioh. 5.38. Secondly, they conteine the meanes, deedes, euidences, charter, and the broad seale of our saluation. Ioh. 5.34. Ioh. 20.31. Rom. 1.16. 1. Tim. 3.15.16. Psal. 19 [...]7. Thirdly, the ignorance and neglect of them, is the cause of all Athiesme, errour, heresie, sinne, rebellion, persecution, misery, yea and dam­nation it selfe, 2. King. 17.26. Psal. 95.10. Isay. 5.13. Math. 22.29. Iohn. 12.35. Rom. 10.2. 1. Cor. 2.8. 1. Thes. 4.13.

Lastly, God hath both in the old Testament, as also in the new, laide a speciall charge and command vpon all sorts of people, soueraigne and subiect, publike and pri­uate persons, mighty and meane, to exercise themselues, and continually to trauaile in the reading and meditati­on of holy scripture: Deut. Iosua. 1.8. Psal. 1.2. Coloss. 3.19. Iohn. 5.39. 1. Tim. 4.13.

Vse. It condemneth the idlenesse and vanitie of this present age, wherein many, & most, bestow none or little time in reading and consulting the sacred Scriptures, wherein they might bee made circumspect, redresse their waies▪ haue comfort and supportance in all afflictions, and be made wise vnto saluation ▪ But in the practise of the vn­fruitfull workes of darkenesse, in the excesse of sinne and vanitie, and in the reading and reuising toyes and trifles that can minister nothing vnto them but matter of mour­ning and cause of after repentance, they can willingly and wilfully spare & spend whole houres, daies, nights, weeks. The Lord amend this, and renue and reuiue the dying & pining zeale of his people and seruants in so many places.

How he maketh request vnto God speaking against Israell.

And in the 1. of Kings 19.10. he saith that he hath beene iealous for the Lord of Hosts (all tending to one purpose) from which place I obserue and gather. That the Pastors & Preachers of Gods word especially must be enfired and inflamed with an holy zeale of Gods glory, & with a ho­ly indignation against sin and idolatry, then principally when with Elias & others, they see most grieuous trans­gressions of the people, when they see Baals Priests, viz. Iesuites and Seminaries, Popish Emisaries to be had in re­quest and high reputation; and themselues and the true Prophets and ministers of the Lord reuiled and reiected, yea wringed and wronged, yea killed and slaughtered, when they see Christ to bee vilified and Antichrist to be deified, and when they see the Gospell troden vnder­foot & impiety & superstition aduanced. Examples here­of wee haue in Moses who seeing the Golden Calfe that the Israelites had made,Exo. 32. v. 19. and the dauncing about it, waxed wroth, cast the tables out of his hands, brake them in peeces before the Mountaine, burned the calfe in fire, ground it to powlder, strawed it vpon the water, and made the Children of Israell drinke of it.

Num. 25. v. 7.In Phaenehas the sonne of Eleazar, who arose vp from the midst of the Congregation, tooke a speare in his hand and with it thrust thorow Zimri the sonne of Sal [...] and Cozbi, the daughter of Zur the Midianitish woman, and so the plague ceased from the children of Israell.

In Zacharias the sonne of Ichoiada, the Priest, who ob­seruing the people after Ichoiodah his death, to fall away to idolatrie, in zeale reproued them, for transgressing Gods commandements: hee told them, that they should not prosper, but that as they had forsaken the Lord, so he had forsaken them: and herevpon they at King▪ Ioash his tyr­rannicall command stoned him to death. In Iohn the Bap­tists, for his bold reprehension of the Pharasies and Sadu­ces, and for reprouing of Herod for his incest, and many other sinnes. In Peter against Ananias and Saphira his [Page 9] wife Act. 5.3. In Steuen in telling the Iewes they were stif-necked and that they like their fathers alwaies resisted the holy Ghost, Act 7. vc. 16 that they had not kept the law, but that they were the betraiers and murderers of the iust. In Paul, whose spirit was stirred vp in him, Act. 17. v. 16 whē he saw the citty of Athens subiect to idolatrie. And in himselfe and Barnabas, who when the people with their Priest would haue done sa­crifice to them, in zeale rent their owne clothes and rebuked the people. In Dauid as the tipe, and most eminently in Christ the truth and perfection, all of whom were con­sumed with the zeale of Gods house. Psal. 69.19. Math. 21.12. Ioh. 2, 15.

Reason. The reason hereof is, because they are Gods watchmen and forewarne the people, they are Gods trumpetters to tell the people of their sinnes, and the spi­rituall leaders, guides and directers of the multitude.

1 Vse. This doctrine serueth for reproofe of some Mini­sters of our time who either are remisse and negligent, and seeking their owne ease, neuer oppose themselues by doctrine and example, against the errors and sinnes of their flockes, but rather applaude them or (at least) in conniuence take notice of nothing; and if the shew any zeale it is rather for their own Diana and advantage, then for Gods true religion and glory.

2 Vse. It is a great comfort for all true and sound hear­ted Ministers, who in an aduized and discreete zeale within the compasse of their callings, both by preaching, example and authority shew their dislike, and opposition against superstitions and enormous sinnes and abuses, beeing assured that what contumelies and indignities they vndergoe for Gods honour,1 Sam. 2.30 God will accordingly consider of them and censure their aduersaries, he will ho­nour them that honor him and despise them that despise him.

They haue killed thy Prophets and digged downe thine Alters.

From these two members ioyntly considered,Doctr. aris­eth this instruction. That it is the plot and practise of Apostataes and Idolaters in their hatred & rage against [Page 10] God, to labour, to blot all remembrance of God, and not to suffer the Ambassadors and Messengers of God to re­maine aliue. Psal. 79.1 & 2. Psal. 8.13. Apoc. 12.2. & 13.16. & 17. Apoc. 18.24.

Reas. The reason in regard of the holy monuments of Gods seruice is, because they are profaine and wicked and regard them not; and as for the good ministers of God, they like the King of Aram against Ahab (though indeed a most wicked King▪) fight against none (in comparison) but against them, for they seeme stumbling blockes and hubbes in their way who by their ministerie and zealous example vexe them. Apoc. 11. ver. 10.

1. Vse. Let vs be thankefull vnto God for the long con­tinued vse and ministery of his blessed Gospell, and that neither Prelates nor Pastors nor Preachers are not giuen into the hands of our blood-thristy & woluish aduersaries

2. Vse. Secondly let the ministers prepare and resolue them-selues not onely to suffer rebuke and losse for Gods cause, but also to die for it, (if they be therevnto called) for God will highly reward them, and they shall not bee loosers but gainers by it, and not damnified, but euerlas­tingly glorified.

3. Vse. Seeing the good pastors and ministers of Gods word are so much maligned & assaulted by Satan and his instruments, let all the people of God pray for their con­stancy, patience, successe of their ministery, for their deli­uery and preseruation; and then (no doubt) the ministers shall speede and prosper the better, and the comfort of their perseruation shall redound to the people.

And I am left alone.

Herein Elias (if we diligently heed the story and time wherein he prophecied) who a little before thought that he had conuerted most of the Israelites, and now he thin­keth that they haue vniuersally reuolted from true reli­gion, wee are taught that the most excellent seruants of God haue their errours and infirmities, one while, they conceiue ouer-well of men, and another while ouer-ill. Act. 15. ver. 37.38.39.

[Page 11]1. Vse. If so rare and singuler men these many times erre and are deceiued, let no man presume too much of his owne knowledge, learning and iudgement, but walke humbly, and alwayes suspect his owne ignorance and weakenesse, and let him iudge rashly or ouer-hastily of no man, but reserue all secret iudement to God.

If none for the present ioyne with him in the open de­fense of Gods worship,Rom. 14. v. 4. or if none such be knowne, yea if they should all forsake him, as all forsooke Paul when he was conuented before Nero, let them not bee discoura­ged, but goe on boldly, trusting in God, and the good­nesse of their cause,2. Kin. 6. v. 16. and God will assist, strengthen, deli­uer, yea and glorifie them. God being on a mans side, who can be against him, nay he hath more with him, then against him; and other mens generall Apostacie, or start­ing aside from their dutie and obedience, cannot possi­bly depriue him of his crowne: for hee shall liue by his faith, and the more temptations, and discouragements, hee findeth to hinder him, the greater will be his praise, preferment and exaltation in the end. Paraph. But what saith the answer (or oracle) of God to him. i. We must rather in this Apostacie of the Church attend what the Lord the God of trueth saieth, then rest vpon the coniecture of Elias: [...] haue left or reserued to my selfe. i. I haue preserued from death and idolatry, 7000. men. i. a great number of men, women, and children, for seauen a set number, is put (here as in other places of Scripture) for one indefinite or vncertaine number: that haue not bowed their knees to the image of Baall. i. that haue not polluted themselues with idolatry, no not so much as in outward gesture and action. Euen so at this present time. i. in the time of the new Testament, there is a remnant, i. a small remainder of Iewes in comparison of those that perish, through the election of grace, i. whom God of his grace and fauour hath elected to euer-lasting life, and which shall be saued by faith in Christ.

Questions out of the 4. & 5. verses. Doth the Church of God neuer faile or cease to be vpon the earth?

[Page 12] An. No, for albeit many times and in many places the church ceaseth to be visible, conspicuous and glorious; yet the true Catholicke and inuisible Church, which con­sisteth onely of the number of the Predestinate and Elect, euer was, is, and shall be; and shall alwayes remaine in the world in one place or other For first, it neuer failed when it was brought to the greatest extremities, but (at length) it hath alwayes lifted and put forth her head out of the darkenesse where-with it was oppressed. Secondly Christ his kingdome is eternall,Luke 1. v. 33. Dan. 7. v. 14. and shall neuer end, but shall last and indure for euer, when other kingdomes shall bee ouerthrowne, destroyed and extinct. Thirdly, Gods couenant made with the Iewes and Gentiles, viz. that hee will be their God, and the God of their seed, is euer­lasting and vnchangeable, therefore there must needs be some, in whom the couenant must bee ratified and ac­complished. Lastly, Gods promises cannot lye, and his power can doe althings, and God doth nourish and pre­serue the church by his word and prouidence, when im­pietie and idolatry euery where preuaileth.

2. Que. Had God any church and people in the mid­dest of the darkenesse of Poperie, when tyrants and false Teachers laboured, vtterly to roote it out?

An. Yes, as may especially appeare, Apoc. 12.16. where the woman the Church flying into the wildernesse. i. to pla­ces vnknowne, to the aduersaries, had a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hun­dreeh and three score dayes. i. they were nourished by or­dinary meanes,Apoc. 12 v. 7. by hearing some true things of their owne Teachers, and partly by learning true faith and doctrine of other better teachers, partly by reading the holy scriptures, and by meditating and musing of it by themselues, and by conferring with others.

Secondly, the Papists had some things that apper­taine to the true Church, as Baptisme (albeit not alto­gether purely administred) the Scriptures, the Apostles Creede, the Commandements, the Lords prayer, and a certaine ministerie.

[Page 13]Thirdly, in the ruinous state, darkenesse and Apostacie of a Church, the very reading and repeating of the word, yea, the very sound and report of it is (by Gods extraor­dinary working) sufficient and effectuall to saue all those whom God will haue saued. Act. 11. v. 20. & 21. Iohn 42. Rom. 10 18.

Lastly, God hath his Church and seed, euen in Baby­lon, (albeit in faith and affection separated and disioy­ned from her) Apoc. 12.7. and these the Dragon maketh warre with; Likewise Apoc; 18.4. where Gods people are exhorted to come out of Babilon, &c. ergo, there were some elect, and some of Gods people there.

Quest. Therefore may not we perswade our selues that many of our Ancestors and fore-fathers were saued in the middest of Poperie?

An. Yes doubtlesse, as well as in the corrupt and Apo­staticall time of Elias, for nothing hath in the Papacie befallen the Church which hath not befallen vnto it in times past.

Secondly (besides the reasons expressed in the answer to the former question) many of them kept and held the principles and foundations of faith, and so rightly en­formed their children, seruants, and families therein, Apoc. 13.8.

Thirdly, there haue beene some that haue alwayes and openly, by preaching, writing, and disputation, opposed and set themselues against the corruption of error, Apoc. & 12.Illyricus. and this is also manifest by Illyri­cus his catalogue of the witnesses of the truth.

Fourthly, many thousand children Baptised (and so holy) dyed in their infancie and child-hood, before they could be infected and poysoned with the pestilence of error,1. Cor. 7. v 14. and so were saued.

Fiftly, God pardoneth many faults and infirmities in his children, whose hearts and mindes are right with him. Mal. 3. v. 17.

Lastly, many of our Ancesto [...] (albeit transported with [Page 14] the common invndation of error) did before the end of this life, repent of their sin, and vtterly renounce and dis­claime their owne merites and all confidence in them, and relied vpon Christ onelie by true faith and so were saued.

Q. Why doth God sometimes suffer his Church to bee brought into such affliction, darkenes & extremities that the outward face of it cannot be seene and discerned?

A. For two causes, first, because the world & the wicked is,Heb 11.38. Math. 21. vers. 41. and 43 altogither vnworthy of the fellowship of Gods Saints and the ministery of the word, and therefore God hath most iustly depriued them of it.

Secondly, God for the preseruation of the Church will haue it sometimes to bee secret and vnknowne, for otherwise the world seeing it, would inuade and destroy it. Apoc. 12.6.

Q. Is it not lawfull, yea and sometimes expedient for a true and sound Christian, for the auoding of offence and the preseruation of his life, to dissemble his religion, and to goe to Masse and Idoll seruice?

A. No, for first it is not sufficient for vs, to keepe our mindes free from assent vnto, and from approbation of idolatry, but wee must keepe our bodies vndefiled also 2. Cor. 7.1.1 Cor. 6. v. 19 and 20 Secondly God created and Christ redeemed both soule and body, & therefore wilbe serued with both.

Thirdly, God requireth not only the beliefe of the heart, but also the confession of the mouth yea and the outward gesture and action also; Rom. 10.9. Luk. 9.26. otherwise wee play the Hypocrites and God will discouer and de­test vs.

Forthly, the offence that Idolaters conceiue, is by them taken and not by vs giuen, and therefore we are not in this regard to respect them at all. Math. And if we should communicate with them in their Idola­trous worship we should both harden them in their er­ror and destroy, or (at least) weaken the faith of others; & touching preuention of danger, we must vse no vnlawful means to diuert it, but commit our selues and cause vnto [Page 15] the power,Psal. 37. ver. 5 and 6. Mich. 7. v. 7. and 9. prouidence and goodnesse of the almighty, who will dispence and dispose of all things for our good and knoweth how to deliuer vs.

Lastly in respect of maintenance of Gods glory our liues, yea, (if neede should require) our saluation should not be deare and pretious vnto vs. Apoc. 12.11. and it is giuen vnto the true members of the Church (as a speciall priuiledge) not onely to beleeue in Christ but also to suffer for him. Phil. 1. v. 9

I haue reserued vnto my selfe.

It belongeth vnto God only to preserue his church and children from Idolatry,Doctr. sinne and temptation, euen then when the greatest number perish Hosea 13.9.2. Pet. 2.9.Apoc. 3.10

Rea. The reason hereof is because it is not in the power and ability of any mortal man to saue himself, but it must proceed from the power and promise of God onely.

Vse. It condemneth all conceite of our owne excellency and presumption, which wee see how God correcteth in his owne deare children, as in Dauid, Peter and o­thers.

2 Vse. Secondly in all temptatious and dangers, we must depend onely of Gods omnipotency, goodnesse and mer­cie, and by earnest praier and supplication craue assistance and strength from God who will denie vs nothing tha [...] we aske in faith and in his Sonnes name▪ Luk. 11.13. Ioh. 15.16. Ioh. 5.14.

To my selfe 7000.

Hence we learne the perpetuitie and euerlasting conti­nuance of the true Church of Christ vpon the earth vnto the worlds end Math. 28. vers. 19 and 20.Doctr. Ephe. 4. v. 11 and 12.13

It is not in the power and policy, might or malice of the diuil and all his instruments, whether tyrants or Seduce [...] and false Prophets, to roote it out and extinguish it. It is built vpon Christ, Math. 10 v. 18 Psal. 25. ver. 1 and the gates of hell cannot preuaile a­gainst it, it is the mount Syon, that shal neuer be remoued, and the ship tossed and turmoiled in the waters, billowes, tempests, and windes of this malignant world, and yet shal neuer sinke Math. 8. vers. 25. and 26.

[Page 16] Reason. For Gods couenant is an euerlasting couenant, his mercie endureth for euer, his truth shal neuer faile to­wards the Church,Isay 55. ver. 3 he is alwaies with them to the end of the world, & is both able and ready to helpe and releeue them in all dangers and difficulties.

The vses hereof are manifold and most comfortable.

Math. 28. ver. 20.1 Vse. We must learne hence, neuer, (no not in the most dead, desperate and declining state of the Church) with Elias, rashly to condemne it: for if the most Eagle-eyed & sharpe-sighted Prophets haue beene deceiued herein, much more may wee, that are in so many respects so farre behind them and inferior to them.

2 Vse We must not bee daunted and disheartned, much lesse despaire of Gods Church and the preseruation of a seed and remnant, when the Godly are diminished, yea and sometimes non inuenti sunt, and the wicked braue it out, tyranize ouer the Church and are exceedingly mul­tiplied; for many that seeme good are but hypocrites and dissemblers and the Godly themselues (albeit liuing amongst vs) are not alway knowne vnto vs.1 King. 8. 4 et 15. It is proper to God onely, to know the heart and to know his. 2. Tim. 2 19. and God in the corruptest estate of a Church that can bee immagined, reserueth a remnant to himselfe.

3 Vse In this case wee must walke by faith and not by sight, and iudge not by the outward apparence wherein the wisest and the best may be, and are oft deceiued, but iudge by the written word and where that determineth not, to suspend our opinion and reserue secret iudgement vnto God, who wil further manifest the truth in his good time. Deut 15.15.

Which haue not bowed their knees to Baal.

Doctr.From the authoritie and force of this place, I obserue: That the Godly must not in the least things expresly for­bidden, consent vnto and communicate with Idolatry, no not in the outward gesture of kneeling, kissing, gazing, bodily presence. Daniel

The first reason hereof is, because wee are to make a conscience of all Gods commandements and to abstaine [Page 17] from all appearance or [...]. 1. kinde of euill.1 Thess. 5. ve.

Secondly, they that carelesley assent and yeeld vnto that which is apparently euill, are many times and may be drawen vnto greater cuills and sinnes,A similitude. euen as he that walketh to neere the pit-brinke or riuers side, may some­times fall in, and be drowned, especially if God (to punish his rashnesse and presumption) leaue him to himselfe as he left Aa [...]on, and Peter for the time.

Vse. Hereby the wisdome, zeale and practise of those Christians is highly commended, who choose rather to hide themselues in Den [...]es, Heb. 11 v. 30 Caues, Mountaines, yea, and wander vp and downe in sheepe skinnes and in goates skinnes, being destitute, afflicted and tormented, then in Churches and the Groues of Idolatry to shew any countenance by any out-ward gesture or behauiour.

2 Vse. It condemneth the fearefulnesse, and hypocri­sie of such who thinke it sufficient if they haue (as they say) faith in their hearts, and keepe their consciences to themselues, and so outwardly communicate with Idoll and false worship, but the commandement of God, the practise of Christ, the Prophets, Patriarkes, Apostles, Con­fessors, Martirs, and of all sincere Churches, is directly a­gainst it.

3 Vse. Thirdly we must bee so farre from condemning Gods blessed seruantes and martyrs for tendernes of con­sience and scrupulosity herein, that wee must our selues with ioynt harmony and consent of heart and bodie fly and shun all iust shew and appearance of Idolatry.

Euen so then at this present there is a remnant through the election of grace.

This verse conteyneth, the illustration and probation of Paules proposition touching the reiection of the Iewes: and the summe of the comparison is this. Euen as in the daies of Elias, all the children of Israell seemed to haue fallen away from the true worshippe of GOD to the adoration of Baal, and yet notwithstanding there were seauen thousand, (though vnknowne to [Page 18] Elias) that neuer bowed their knee to the Idoll; euen so at this time there is a reseruation of many elect a­mongst the Iewes, albeit the greater part of them (for the time) are cast away. From this application and com­parison of the Apostle, this instruction and doctrine offereth it selfe to our consideration, viz. That God is alwaies true and like himselfe and neuer changeth his nature, couenant, promises Psalm. 89. vers. 33 and 38. Romanes 3, 4. 2. Samuel 7.28. And therefore it cannot bee that hee hath wholy reiected all the Iewes. For God is voide of all corruption and alteration in his es­sence, it can neuer faile but remaineth the same from e­t [...]rnity to eternity.

Secondly, he is constant and vnmoueable in his will, he keepeth all his decrees once made, and he neither chang­eth them nor hath any need so to do.

1. Vse. This serueth notably for our comfort and con­solation in this life: for Gods decree of election is cer­taine, & the grace of God in his elect is perpetuall. Rom. 11.30. Ier. 31. ver. 31. Therefore we cannot miscarry.

2. Vse. Whereas God is alwaies like him and vnchange­able, we must learne hence to be constant, stedfast and vn­changeable in all duties of piety to God, of sobriety to our selues, and of charity and iustice towards all men: o­therwise as it is a shrewd and fearefull signe of Bastardy when the child in nothing resembleth the parents, so it is a dangerous signe that wee bee none of the Lords, when we are so ticklish fickle and false in our duties and couenants both to God and men, herein nothing resemb­ling the Maiesty of God.

V. 5. A remnant through the election of grace.

V. 6. And if it be of grace then it is no more of workes, or els were grace no more grace.

A remnant.

From the warrant and authority of this and the like [Page 19] places, it euidently appeareth, that the number of the Elect and of those that shalbe saued is (at all times) verie small and few in comparison of those that are reprobates and that perish; but especially in the time of a generall or long continued defection and Apostacie, Luke 18.8. Math. 7.14.Luk. 21.32. They are a little and a contemptible flocke, they are but, a remnant and reseruation, a tenth: Isaias, and Paul say, though the number of the children of Israell were as the sand of the sea, yet shall but a remnant bee sa­ued Isay 10.21. et 22. Rom. 9.27. Narrow is the way that leadeth vntol [...]fe, and few there are that enter into it. Math. 7. ver. 13, and 14.

The cause of this small number of them is, not because Christ doth enuy saluation to any,Math 1 [...]. v. 27 for he doth most kind­ly inuite and allure all to come vnto him, but because the greatest number refuse the grace of saluation offered vnto them, and will not by faith receiue and apply it.

1 Vse. It ouerthroweth the error of them that determine of a church by a perpe [...]uall multitude; whereas alwaies (though sometimes more and sometimes lesse) it is the least number (by many degrees) that treadeth in the right way, that followeth the truth and that entereth in by Christ.

2 Vse. We must comfort our selues against the pauci­ty and fewenes of Gods children, that his can neuer fall a way, neither can they perish, these God alwaies hath a tender regard of, he doth take notice of them, & confirme and defend them against all crosse euents and after-claps. And as for other mens profanesse, vnbeliefe, Apostacy, it shal, nor can, neuer any whit preiudice their fauor and fe­licity; for euery man shall beare his owne burden: and e­uery man shalbe saued by his owne faith, or condemned for his owne vnbeliefe and impenitency.

V. 6. And if it bee of grace, then it is no more of workes, or els were grace no more grace, but if it be of workes, it is no more grace, or els were workes no more workes. And if it be of grace.

[Page 20] Sens [...].The election, calling and reseruation of a remnant, pro­ceedeth onely from Gods meere mercie and fauour, and not from any fore-seene faith, workes, or any outward priuiledge whatsoeuer, for els grace. i. not of grace, but wages giuen vnto them, for the worth and dignitie of the worke: But if it [...]ee of workes then it is no more of grace. i. arising from the gratious loue, pleasure and good will of God [...]sls. i. [...]f it be of grace, were worke no more worke. i. the merit of workes were no more merite but a free gift.

From the Apostle his practise, reasoning and conclu­ding thus; from the contraries, the affirming of one of which doth necessarily deny and take away the other, this fundamentall point offereth it selfe to our view and consideration; That in the matter and mysterie of mans predestination,Doctr. iustification, and saluation, all dispositi­on of mans will, all fore-seene faith and workes, all na­turall and peculiar prerogatiues, are wholy debarred and shut out from beeing a [...]y impulsiue moouing and working cause of it, and that they proceed onely and wholy from the euerlasting decree and good pleasure of God.

The Scriptures are most plaine and pregnant for the demonstration of this principle. Romanes 9.11. Ephesians 1.5. Iohn 15.16. Acts 13.48. Deut. 10.15.

Further reasons to backe and fortifie this assertion are these, first all disposion of mans will followeth predes­tination, (as doth likewise faith and workes) and there­fore cannot possibly be any cause of it.

Gen. 6. ve. 5:Secondly, it is, naturally bent vnto euill continually, and therefore cannot deserue ought at Gods hand, and as for faith and workes they are fruites and effects of e­lection, therefore no cause of it: they are also vnperfect and therefore voide of merite: Thirdly they are the gifts and workes of Gods spirit in vs, therefore not of our selues or from our owne worthines: and touching natural and speciall prerogatiues they (in the Iewes) proceeded [Page 21] from Gods couenant, and not from naturall generation, for Iewes and Gentiles are alike conceiued and borne in sinne. Fourthly the holy Patriarkes neuer rested, much lesse gloried in them.

More-ouer if Gods predestination were caused by fore­seene faith and workes,Rom. 9. v. 20. then might an euident reason be giuen of it, which Paul vtterly denieth, and if workes could merit ought by their owne worthinesse, then grace should be destroyed, Gods glory empaired, and all the workes of our redemption obscured.Eph. 5. v. 5 Rom. 19. v 23 Lastly, God hath chosen vs from euerlasting in himselfe, in Christ to the praise of his glorious grace, and hath made vs vessels of mercy, of gold and siluer, &c. 2. Tim. 2. v. 20 Therefore in the worke of our predestination and redemption, Gods mercy and goodnesse is all in all, and hath not any respect to any thing that is without, and not partaker of his owne na­ture and essence.

It serueth to beate downe all pride and humane glory, and all confidence in any of our owne workes, because all the workes and glory of our saluation is from Gods grace and mercy onely, and not from our selues, or any thing in vs,Math. 11.26 Rom. 9.18.

2. Vse. And if it did hang vpon our owne workes wee should bee vncertaine, because wee cannot satisfie GODS iustice. Secondly, in that GOD hath beene so good vnto vs,Psal. 50. v. 14. &▪ 23. wee must pay vnto him the continuall im­post of praise and thanksgiuing, and for a document and proose hereof, labour to frame and conforme our liues, wayes and workes, to the rule of his written word.

3. Vse. Lastly, wee must not doubt a [...]d remaine in sus­pence of his loue and fauour, but take notice of it, secure and perswade our selues of it more and more. For God is full of mercie and goodnesse, who is a louing Father, a kinde and sweete Sauiour in Christ, and doth by the perfume and magneticall attraction of his mercies, pro­uoke and allure all men to worship, feare, loue, inuocate and trust in him; And therefore wee cannot offer greater indignitie, nor doe more notable iniurie to so good a [Page 22] Maiestie, then to call his grace, goodnesse, or mercy into question.

Text. v. 7.What then, Israell hath not obtained that he sought. 2. Section.

i. What shall wee say and confesse, namely this, as the trueth is, that Israell, i. those carnall Israelites, who boa­sted themselues to be Israelites,Parapras. and gloried in the flesh, hath not obtained that he sought, i. that whereas they went about and endeauoured to attaine vnto iustification and eternall life by their owne workes and merits, they haue not obtained it, v. 22.

But the election hath obtained it. i. the elect as farre forth as they are elect, haue obtained it, in, and by the force of election, and because they sought it onely of grace through faith. But the rest. i. they are not elected but reiected, haue beene hardened. i. their heart hath in Gods iust iudgement, through their owne malice and contempt of Christ, beene so brawned and drawne with such an hard skin, that no doctrine of saluation and faith can bee wrought or rooted in them. According as it is written. i. by the Prophet Isayas, Isai. 6. v. 9. God hath giuen them. i. powred out vpon them in his iudgements and indig­nation; the spirit of pricking (according to the translati­on of the septuagint, which Paul followed) i. all ill af­fection and bitternesse of spirit, against the light of truth, and sharpe and greeuous biting of minde or the tor­ments of enuie and of a galling conscience, by reason of the preaching and successe of the Gospell, or (accor­ding to the Heb [...]w) the spirit of slumber, i. a dull and drowsie minde, and a deepe and dead sleepe, in so much that they are depriued of all iudgement and feeling, eyes that they should not see. i. such a minde, whereby they cannot vnderstand the true doctrine of saluati­on: and eares that they should not heare. i. such an heart whereby they cannot obey the Gospell, and thereby bee conuerted: vnto this day, i. from Elias his time, vnto the time of Pauls preaching, for so long continued [Page 23] their hardening, and euer since vnto our present time.

Quest. Why should not Israel obtaine that he sought for, seeing that Christ is the doore, and Heauen gates stand open day and night?

Ans. First, because they would not acknowledge nor receiue Christ the true Messias and mediator. Second­ly, they did not, nor would not goe the right way to sal­uation, but by their owne workes.

The rest were hardned.

Quest. Who is the author and cause of the Iewes hard­ning, Sathan, or themselues, or God?

Ans. If wee consider it as it is a sinne, and an offence against God, then it proceedeth onely from man, and from Sathan; for mans heart is stony, and as hard as Flint by nature, whereby it is fitte for Sathan to worke vpon.

Secondly, mans heart beeing so hard, Sathan doth counsaile, [...]gge, and solicite it to sinne: and man, bee­ing destitute of grace, willingly forsaketh God, and yeeldeth his assent and consent vnto euill, and detesteth good, and so becometh more hard and indurate.

Thirdly, the more meanes either of instruction, and mercy, or of threatnings and iudgements, GOD offe­reth to soften and ouer-come their hardnesse, the more, they, by with-standing and resisting them, are harde­ned and confirme the habite of their nature, and so growe worse and worse. And thus with Pharao they more harden their owne hearts, so that the sinne and fault resideth in themselues, and is not to bee imputed to God:

Quest. In what respects doth God harden?

Ans. As it is an action, and iudgment, and a worke of iustice, and in respect of the end and euent, so God doth it, and is the author of it: As it is an action or mo­tion it is good, for wee all haue our beeing and moo­uing from God, but the corruption and defect of the action, proceedeth from mans corrupt minde and will; [Page 24] as it is a iudgment God is the author of it, thus hee har­dened Pharoes heart, and doth by the ministerie of his word instrumentally harden the wicked. Lastly, in re­spect of the end and euent, which is his owne glory: and thus God in the hardening, blinding, and obstinacie of the Iewes▪ tooke occasion to call and shew mercy to vs Gentiles, and thus hee turneth their hearts whether so­euer pleaseth him, and doth mooue them to execute his owne iudgements; and thus God directed Sathans ma­lice, the Scribes and Pharisies enuie, Iudas his couetous­nesse, and Pilate his iniustice, in killing the Lord of glo­rie, to the redemption of mankind, the instruments in­tending no such matter, Isay. 1 [...] v. 7.

Qu. How doth God harden, and in what forme?

Ans. Not by infusing malice, or instilling sinne into the delinquent, for he is iust, holy, and purity it selfe, and therefore he cannot but hate and punish it; but he doth it first, either by not imparting grace, or by with-draw­ing his spirit from them, for God is not bound either to conferre grace vpon them which they want, or to con­tinue that they haue receiued. Hee is an absolute Lord, and a most free agent,Rom. 9. hee hardeneth whom hee will, and sheweth mercie vpon whom hee will shew mercy.

Secondly, God hardneth them by an outward action, that is, indirectly and accidentally, by casting and ob­iecting certaine outward things to their eyes, eares, and outward senses, whereby they might bee enlightned, mollified and saued. Of this kinde are preaching, sacra­ments, miracles, benefites, warnings, threatnings, punish­ments, all these through their owne fault and want of faith, become hurtfull and dangerous vnto them: euen as good and strong wine,A similitude. is most vnholesome and peri­lous to a sicke man. Thus the gospell is the sauour of death to them, yea and a killing letter.

Thirdly, God reiecteth and putteth into their minds and heartes good thoughts, principles and motions, which they peruert and turne to their owne destructi­on: thus God put into Caiphas his minde, That it was [Page 25] necessary that one should dye for the people, Ioh. 11. v. 50. & 52 and to gather all the sonnes of God into one, and not that all the na­tion should perish. The principle was good, but Caiphas his construction, conclusion, and apply of it was euill. That saying of Pilate, Luk. 23. v. 1 [...]. & 16. I finde no harme in the man, was good and of God; but I will chastice him, &c. This con­sequence but a bad conclusion, of himselfe and altoge­ther euill. Now the cause why God offereth these out­ward obiects vnto, and doth put these inward motions into men, whom hee knoweth will abuse them; is that his iustice might bee seene and acknowledged by their iniustice.

Fourthly, by giuing successe to their endeuours, and by letting them prosper in sinne. Thus hee bad the Di­uell goe and seduce Ahabs 400. false Prophets and pros­per, and thus Iudas and Pharao prospered in their wicked designes, but herein Gods end and scope, and their end and scope much differed. Isay. 10. v. 7.

Quest. How can God bee said to blind the reprobate, seeing that many times, and in many places, hee offereth the light and brightnesse of his glorious gospell vnto them,2. Cor. 4. v. 4. which is a meane and instrument to informe and enlighten them?

An. First, they are blind by nature, and vncapable of the sauing trueth, and God is not indebted nor bound vnto them, who, albeit hee putteth blindnesse into no man, yet hee leaueth them therein, and doth not infuse light into them; so that the more meanes are vsed for their instruction and illumination, the more they are hardened and blinded; for euen as the Owle by the brightnesse of the Sunne is blinded,Similitudes. albeit all other birds are enlightned by it, and as the Claye is harde­ned by the same Sunne by which the waxe is softned and melted: so by the same holy Scripture and glori­ous Gospell, whereby the Elect are enlightened and conuerted, the reprobate are blinded and hardened, and that onely through their owne default and impotency, [Page 26] and not through the Gospell.

Secondly, God in his iustice (now euery action of iustice hath in it the nature and respect of God) be­cause it is the punishment of sinne, doth by further blindnesse and hardenesse of heart, punish their corrup­tion and stubborne rebellion, which they haue and doe most greedily drinke in, and draw vpon themselues, in­so much that they winke with their eyes purposely, and will not see and acknowledge the trueth shining forth vnto them.

Quest. In Isay the Lord fore-telleth but a particuler iudgement, and why is it here generally applyed?

Ans. First, the rule of iustice and equitie, is one and the same with God in euery age, and therefore hee may according to the proportion and number of their of­fenses, as well punish many of the Iewes in Pauls time and sithence, as some particulers in Isaiahs time.

Secondly, their sinne and contumacie since Christ his comming hath beene more generall and grieuous, then the sinnes of all their ancestors, therefore it is according­lie to bee punished.

Thirdly, the punishments of particuler men in Scrip­ture, serue for generall lessonings and warnings vnto vs, that except wee repent and beleeue, wee are to ex­pect the like iudgements, and so looke to drinke of the same cup.

Israell hath not obtained that he sought.

It is not enough and sufficient for men to desire to be blessed, and to seeke for righteousnesse and saluation, yea, to take great paines for it, (for so much Heretickes, Idolaters, Hypocrites, Iewes, Turkes, Papists, yea and Pagans haue performed) vnlesse it bee by the right lawfull meanes,Doctr. and those wayes that God hath o [...] ­dained and sanctified in holy Scripture. It must not bee by the lawe, for that can iustifie and saue no man, for no man can keepe it, nor by mens owne workes and [Page 27] deserts, for if they proceed onely from ciuill and meere naturall men, they are altogether sinne in Gods sight, and as for the good workes of the regenerate, they are but vnperfect, yea and stained with many defects, and therefore they cannot abide the rigour of Gods iustice.

Secondly, they are counteruailed, yea infinitely excee­ded with sinnes both of commission and omission: but true righteousnesse and happinesse is onely to be sought and found in Christ Iesus, as hee is reuealed and set forth vnto vs in holy writ, Act. 4.12. Act. 13. vers. 38. & 39. Luke. 24. v. 47.

Reas. Otherwise if wee seeke righteousnesse and sal­uation preposterously and not by right meanes, wee la­bour in vaine, wee denie the grace of God, and do digge Wells that will hold no water. To this purpose the Prophet Isay sheweth, that the people doth foolishly, who neglecting the sweete and sauing meate and drinke of Gods Gospell, did bestowe great paine and cost in procuring other meate, namely humane tradi­tions and supe [...]stitions, which had no vertue of nou­rishing in it, and which held no true contentment to the ouer-seers of them:Isay. 55. v. 2. Why doe yee (saith hee) lay out siluer and not for bread? and your labour without beeing satisfied? Hearken diligently vnto mee, and eate that which is good, and let your soule delight in fatnesse.

The vses of this doctrine are manifold.
  • 1. Vse. First, hereby are condemned all endeuours and good meanings and intentions that are not of faith, and so are nothing but sinne, Roman. 14. verse. 14.
  • 2. Vse. Hereby is refuted the grosse errour of those that hold that euery man is and shall bee saued by his owne religion and profession, where-as there is but one trueth, and one way of saluation, and that fully and [Page 28] perfectly described in holy Scripture. Iohn. 14. vers. 6. Math. 7. vers. 13.
  • 3. Vse. We must (if we would be blessed and so saued) seeke for righteousnesse and iustification in Christ onely, for there alone it is to be found. Acts 4.12. 1. Ioh. 5.11.

But the Election hath obtained it.

Doct.Here hence in a word (for the point hath beene hand­led before) wee may note, that the cause of obtaining iustification and saluation, is without vs in Gods prede­stination and free mercy, and not in the merites of our workes, Rom. 9.18 Titus 3. v. 5. for here is an vtter op­position betweene Election and workes.

Vse. Wherefore wee must bee thankefull vnto the di­uine Maiestie, for so great and free saluation, and as­cribe all the glorye and praise of it vnto his mercie onely.

And the rest haue beene hardened.

Doctr.The beginning of the ruine and damnation of the re­probate, ariseth from the desertion and reprobation of God. Reprobation is the very tree, roote, and fountaine of blindnesse; for the wicked forsaken of God, can doe nothing in all their deeds, words and counsailes, but pull, hale, and heape vpon them Gods curse.

1. Vse. Let not the Elect and the true seruants of God be offended, in the madnesse and senselesnesse of Repro­bates, seeing that it hath his originall and foundation from Gods decree of reprobation.

2. Vse. Hereby is condemned the errour and ignorance of such, who are of opinion, that God did not freely of himselfe (before Adams fall) determine of all things, persons, accidents, circumstances, &c. where as GOD doth effect and execute nothing in time, but that which hee most wisely and holily determined before all times.

The spirit of pricking or com [...]unction.

Taking the word in this sense and signification, we are taught this lesson and conclusion.Doctr. That God doth most seuerely and grieuously punish those that distast, con­temne and reiect his grace offered and tendered to them in Christ, namely they are so giuen ouer of God and so possessed by Satan, that they pure and powerful ministery of the gospell, and testimonies of Gods word applied a­gainst them doth nothing, but vex, gall, enrage and tor­ment them. Act. 7.54. Apoc. 11. v. 10.

Nay they are so offended at, and so enuie the successe and prosperity of the gospell and the true professors of it, that they cannot rest, and do (to the consuming of them­selues and hastining of their owne speedy and iust dam­nation) nothing but breath out gall and bitternesse, a­gainst good m [...]n, and designe Gods Church and children to death and destruction. Act. Ioh. 9.22. Math. 2. v. 3. Apoc. 20. v. 9.

Rea. The reason is, that they might (to their greater damnation) haue some checks and inward torments of conscience whiles they trouble and persecute the Godly; which is to them but a beginning and a fore-runner of e­uerlasting damnation.

Vse. Let vs beware that we do not foster and norrish any roote of gall and bitternesse in our selues against Gods truth and seruants, least otherwise wee in time be­come indurate, senselesse and desperate, but let vs feare God and his iudgments,Prouer. 28 14. for hee that alwaies feareth in bles­sed, but he that hardneth his heart shall fall into euill.

The spirit of slumber.

Thus it is in the originall and perhaps (as it is well ges­sed at by some) the word [...],Piscato [...] ▪ in hunc locum. is deriued of [...], which signifieth might, to signifie some deepe sleepe, wherewith men are vsually possessed in the dead of the night, & this senselesse slumber may well be an effect, and the issue of a pricking and enraged conscience.

The Doctrine which I raise hence is this,Doctr. that God in [Page 30] his iust iudgements doth many times (to punish mens vn­thankefulnesse and contempt of the truth,) depriue them of all sense both of their sinnes and of Gods anger and displeasure against sinne, in so-much that neither by plagues nor promises they will suffer themselues to bee awakened out of this deepe sleepe and dead securit [...]e. I­say 28.15.

The reasons hereof (in respect of the wicked them­selues,) are, first because they reuolt and depart from the word of God, and hence become so blockish that they haue no sense at all, neither acknowledge Gods hand and counsaile in their paines and punishments.

Secondly enioying long peace and prosperity, and ha­uing no open and professed enemies,Iudg. 18.7. Apoc. 18. [...]. 7 they like the secure citty of Laish and the proud & carelesse whore of Babylon thinke they are farre from al danger and shall see no euill.

Thirdly, they vainely imagine that they haue sufficient defense and prouision against imminent euils, and if they fall out they haue waies and meanes enough to elude and escape them.

Let vs be aduised from the consideration of Gods hand vpon the Iewes, and beware and take heed that we neuer despise nor reiect the gospell and blessings of Christ pro­pounded and offered vnto vs; least with them wee bee left and forsaken in our naturall blindnesse and by conti­nuing stubbernely and stifly in our sinnes wee become worse and worse, and so die in our sinnes and bee dam­ned.

Eyes that they should not see.

Doctr.God as a iust iudge doth deliuer vp the reprobates be­ing destitute of his grace vnto Satan and their owne lusts to be blinded more and more. Ioh. 9. ver. 39. Math. 13.13. and this God doth not by iniecting new blindnesse into them, but by withdrawing his grace from them and by leauing them to their naturall blindnesse, and so it must of necessity be encreased when men are forsaken of God.

The reasons hereof are, first because they are none of his people and elect and hee is not indebted any way vnto [Page 31] them therefore he sheweth his power and iustice in their blinding and hardning.

Secondly, because for the abuse of the gifts and graces of God and for the ill imployment of their talents, God depriueth them of the knowledge and preaching of the word, and so they ranne daylie into great blindnesse and obstinacie (God in his iust iudgment forsaking them) or els, if they enioy the ministery of the word; their hearts are so hardned and starkned with wicked desires and lusts, and by the custome of sinne draweth as it were such a thicke skinne vpon it, that it can by no warnings and admonitions be bent or bowed, and they so hate the doctrine of the gospell, that they neuer heed it, much lesse meditate vpon it.

1 Vse. Let vs not maruaile at this iudgement as though it were some new thing, that they that doe stubbernely and stifly reiect the gospell, be thus blind, seeing that the Prophets so long before complained of it, and fore-told it; but let vs rather beware of it and pray that we be not for our naughtinesse and negligence giuen ouer to the same iudgment.

2 Vse. Let vs be truly thankfull vnto God, and giue glo­rie and praise vnto him, that leauing and forsaking many others in the blindnesse of their minde and hardnesse of their hearts, hee hath by his spirit opened our eyes and eares to vnderstand the doctrine of the gospell and to receiue it by faith vnto saluation, for hee hath not done so with euery person, neither haue the most, knowne his lawes.

V. 9. And Dauid saith, let their table, bee made a snare, and a net and a stumbling block euen for a recom­pence vnto them.

V. 10. Let their eyes be hardned that they see not, and bowe their backe alwaies.

And Dauid as a figure of Christ saith.Paraphras. Let their table. i. their meat, drinke, law, scripture, sacraments of out-ward [Page 32] worship and all their prerogatiues and excellencies, bee made. i. turned into a snare. That is as vnhappy birds are ensnared in that wherein they sought releife and com­fort, so, let the fore-named benefits wherein they out­wardly rest, and which by their wicked opinions and er­rors they haue peruerted and abused, and their preposte­rous zeale against the gospell, turne to their destruction, Let it bee a stumbling blocke and recompence vnto them.

i. Let them stumble against the Law and holy Scrip­ture as against a stone, that they may not bee builded thereby to saluation, but may runne head-long to their owne destruction: and let it, as a recompence turne to their more grieuous punishment and iudgement, and leaue them without all excuse. Let their eyes of their vnderstand­ing be darkned. i. blinded that they may not admit and receiue the sauing light of the gospell, that they be with­out counsaile in their affaires and not perceiue the euills, which doe hang ouer their heads, and bow downe their backes alwaies. i. Let them not speede and prosper in their designes and actions, but let them shrinke and halt, be cast downe and tremble in their mindes and conscien­ces, and let them bee brought downe and diminished by slauerie, troubles and captiuity, and so weaken their strength that they may bee vnprofitable vnto euery worke.

Q. Did not Dauid, Elias, Paul and others, sinne and offend God in praying and vsing imprecation against Gods enemies?

A. No, for first they did it by especiall and extraordi­nary instinct of Gods spirit, and as Prophets, or figures of Christ vnto them, the state and reprobation of diuers persons was reuealed of God.

Secondly, when they did wish eternall destruction to the enemies of God, they did not (to speake properly) pray against their persons, but against the kingdome of sinne and satan in them, which cannot bee altogither de­stroied, but by the confusion of the members and instru­ments of Satan.

[Page 33]Thirdly their praiers and imprecations proceeded only from pure zeale of Gods glory and iustice, and not from any priuate distemper, or mixture of humane passion, for they considered them not as their owne enemies but as the enemies and blasphemours of God.

Q. May we after the example of holy men in scripture pray against any particuler person?

A. No, except we could by a Propheticall or Apostoli­call instinct discerne of their spirits and of their reproba­tion, which guift is denied vs, or except wee knew that they had committed the sinne against the holy Ghost, which is a malicious and finall blasphemy and persecuti­on of the knowne truth and principles of Gods word, which is very hard to iudge of, for any one particuler per­son especially in our times,1 Cor. 12.10. wherein such a guift of discer­ning spirits is not graunted.

Q. May we not at al pray against the enemies of Christs gospell?

An. Yes, for first wee haue the practise and warrant of holy men in scripture for it. Psal. 69.22. 2. King. 1.10. Act. 4. ver. 29. and 30. 2. Tim. 4.

Secondly, when we pray that the kingdome of God may come, we, (by consequence) pray that sinne Satan and all his members may be destroied.

Thirdly, wee are to pray that Gods iustice may bee ac­knowledged and magnified in the plagues, punishments and ruine of the wicked.

Fourthly we must loue God aboue al men whatsoeuer, and if we sincerely loue God, we cannot choose but hate his enemies.

Q. With what cautions and conditions, or in what maner may we lawfully pray against Gods enemies?

A. First we must pray against Gods enemies in gene­rall, for there are, and will alwaies be many such, whom God will neuer saue.

Secondly against their wicked counsailes, plots and purposes,2 Sam. 15.31. and thus Dauid praied that God would turne the counsaile of Ahitophell into foolishnesse and thus [Page 34] the Apostles praied against the counsailes of the Scribes and Pharasies,Act. 4. v. 29 & 30. that charged them with threatnings that they should not preach in the name of Iesus but we must not pray against these persons.

Thirdly we must pray conditionally, against them, that if they be reprobates and so incurable, they may be iudg­ed and iustly condemned, but if they be elect, and by con­sequent curable, they may bee fatherly corrected and so conuerted and saued.

Let their table be made a snare, a net a stumbling blocke.

In that here the word table is specially and principal­ly taken for the holy scripture, we note and obserue, that the sacred scripture is like a table fraught and replenished with most heauenly and exquisite dishes and dainties;Doctr. here is food abundantly sufficient both to satisfie and al­so to solace euery hungry and thirsting soule: Some of them and the principallest are, remission of sinnes, peace and ioy of conscience and eternall life. Pro. 9, 22. Math. 22. v. 4. Cant. 5. ver. 5.

1. Vse. It must teach the ministers of the Gospell al­waies to set forth this table of the word of God, which is truely the hole-some and sauing food of the soule; and as for all speculations, fancies, decrees, traditions, and haie and stuble of worldly vanities let them wholy leaue them off and renounce them.

2 Vse. Let all sorts of men, that wilbe saued come vnto this heauenly banquet continually bringing with them an appetite to the word, and by praier and meditation of their owne wants and the soueraigne vses of Gods word, put an edge to and sharpen their appetites: then shall they bee replenished with good things and drinke of the well of the water of life freely; otherwise for want of appetite the soule will soone languish and pine away.

Their table be a snare, a net.

It is proper and peculiar to reprobates and profane persons to stumble at Gods blessings,2 Doctr. and to abuse and peruert them to their owne destruction. Titu. 1. ver. 15. et 16. Rom. 2, ver. 4. et 5. 2 Pet. 3.16. Amos 6. ve. 4.5.6.

Thus many abuse the doctrine of the law, making it a cause of iustification before God, thus they peruert the gospell to giue leaue and allowance to licentiousnesse and liberty, thus they abuse Gods goodnesse and patience to patronize them in their sinnes, and impenitency, thus they vse their riches to the oppressing of others, their meate and drinke to gluttony, drunkenesse and excesse▪ their apparell to ostentation and pride, the Scriptures to maintaine their errours and heresies, the holy Sab­bothes to iornyings, idlenesse, sportes, vanities, ga­ming, their wisdome and counsaile to intrappe and de­ceiue, their might, fauour and authority to discounte­nance and tread downe all Godlinesse and goodnesse and to aduance and countenance all impietie atheisme, pro­fanes, and euill practisesse.

The reason hereof is, they want faith and purity of heart and affections, and therefore can vse and apply no­thing well,Similetude. their ill hearts and defiled consciences is like to an euill stomacke that turneth sweete meates into sower, and holesome vnto noisome.

Secondly, God is their enemy, and therefore all things (that be otherwise naturally and of themselues good) are by Gods curse, so many causes of their ruine.

Vse If wee would not drawe and pull Gods curse vpon vs through the mis-apply or abuse of his guiftes and bles­sings temporall and spirituall, let vs see and search whe­ther we bee true members of Christ, iustified by faith, and haue our hearts sanctified by GODS spirit, for vntill we be called and regenerate, all things are impure and vnholy vnto vs and wee can in no action please GOD. Rom. 14.23.

2 Vse. If we could with comfort & good conscience vse and partake of any of Gods creatures wee must by the [Page 36] direction of his word, be perswaded of the lawfull vse of them, and that they bee ours by Gods meanes, wee must also by praier sanctifie them vnto vs, crauing a blessing of God, and desiring him to direct vs in the right vse of them.

Let their eyes be darkned that they see not.

Doctr.Out of these words, which are part of the cause, it eui­dently appeareth, what a great iudgement of God it is for men (otherwise of iudgement cunning, subtill, po­liticke) to bee ignorant of the waies of GOD, and to vnderstand nothing well,Psal. 95. v. 10. and to fight and rebell a­gainst God and his blessed truth, and yet to perswade themselues they haue vnderstanding.

Numb. 16.This was the case and condition of Corah and his complices, who bragged and boasted of their sharpe sight, and would haue put out other mens eye, in so much that they accused Moyses and Aaron (Gods bles­sed seruants) as though their sinnes were notorious and open to all men.

Thus the Scribes and Pharises with whom our Sa­uiour so often disputed, and by name in the 9. of Iohn were made more blinde by our Sauiour CHRIST his preaching, doctrine, conference, miracles, life, innocency and therefore hee saieth, that hee came vnto iudgement in this world, Ioh. 9.39 that they which see might bee made blinde.

i. They that see by their owne iudgment and thinke that they neede not the sight of grace, for their pride and contempt, are more blinded, `according to the threatning and complaint in Isay. Isay 42.19. Who is so blinde as my seruant and messenger? And thus the Popes, Bishoppes, Priestes, Iesuites, Seminaries of the Romish Church, who when they are told of their errours, demaund if the Church may erre, falsely perswading themselues that they are the Church, and therefore they cannot bee deceiued.

The reason of this iudgement is for that this [Page 37] obstinate and malicious blindnesse, is the beginning and progresse to eternall damnation.

1. Vse. When we see such things and iudgements come to passe, let vs not bee offended nor wauer in our faith; but rather bee confirmed and strengthened in it; for as much as such iudgments are inflicted vpon the oppo­nents and contemners of it, It must bee an admonition against those conceited persons, who deceiuing them­selues, thinke they see,Isay. 5. v. 21. and to bee of all most quick eyed, when all their consultations and proceedings are against Gods reuealed will, and nothing indeed but workes of darkenesse and the Deuill.

3. Vse. Wee must bee thankfull to the Lord for the light and knowledge imparted vnto vs, and supplicate vnto his diuine Maiestie, that hee would not punish our sinnes with so great a punishment.

And euer bowe downe their backes.

Obser. Seeing the curse of God hangeth ouer the enimies heads,Psal 89. v. 17. & 19. Psal. 73. v. wee haue no cause to bee afraide and af­frighted at their malice, furie, and frensie; but rather to confirme and comfort our selues in our holy profession, for God will at length bring them to confusion, and will bring and procure ioy and deliuerance to his.

The reason hereof is, for that it is in the hands of God to breake their strength, and to smite them with a spi­rituall blindnesse, as he smote the Syrians, the Aegiptians and Elymas the Sorcerer with materiall blindnesse.

Vse. The vse hereof serueth to reprooue the faintnesse and want of faith in such, who because they see no pre­sent likelyhoods, beginnings, and possibilities of the wic­ked mens ruine and ouer-throwe, begin to call in que­stion Gods iustice, and to frame and conforme them­selues to their ill wayes and practises, not knowing that the candle of the wicked is soone put out, and their pompe and brauery soone commeth to naught, and that in the meane time the godly are onely proued and tried, whether that they will abuse Gods patience and bounty [Page 38] as the wicked worldlings and Atheists doe, or not.

Bowe downe their backs.

Doctr.The weakning of the strength is a speciall iudgment of God, Psalm. 102. vers. 24. that is, if at that time for their sinnes they were diuersly afflicted, and banished out of their countrie, and cut off in the middle of their race, that they should not see the longed for time of the Messias, nor bee partakers of the promised and ex­pected glorie; much more are they (and so remaine) to bee afflicted and captiuated since the Incarnation and Ascension of Christ: for as much as they would not haue Christ to raigne ouer them, nor would bee ranged vnder his banner, nor submit themselues to the Scepter of his Gospell.

Bowe downe their backes alwayes, or make their loynes to stagger, (as in the originall, or Hebrew.) i. cause them to tremble in their consciences [...]. From both these trans­lations considered together, we may obserue, how grie­uous and violent is the inward vexation and perplexi­ties of an euill conscience,Doctr. especially in mighty calami­ties and sore temptations, so that often-times it weak­neth and shaketh the strength of the whole body. It maketh them feare where no feare is,Gen. 4. v. 14. and with Caine to thinke, that euery body that meeteth them is their enemie,Daniel. 5. v. 2.3, 4, & 5. and will kill them. They in their sports and iolli­ties with Balthazer oftentimes obserue the hand-writing of Gods iudgement extant against them, and being aliue they are already dead, and being in earth, they are in the very suburbes of hell.

Vse. If wee would bee free from the torments and trouble of an euill conscience, wee must repent vs vnfai­nedly of all our sinnes, and with faith and holy zeale embrace and constantly follow and professe the Gospell of Christ. For this is the meane and way, both to pro­cure and to retaine ioye and peace of conscience in all trials and trouble [...] whatsoeuer.

The third Section or part of the Chapter.

Vers. 11.

I demand then haue they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but through their fall saluation (com­meth) to the Gentiles, to prouoke them to follow them.

Vers. 12.

Wherefore if the fall of them bee the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gen­tiles: how much more (shall) their aboundance?

I Demand then, haue the Iewes stumbled? viz. at Christ the Rocke and stone of offence, that they should fall, viz. should in Gods euer-lasting counsell be wholy cut off and so perish. God forbid, i. let no man thinke or iudge so, for the couenant is not vtterly abolished, but they (many of them) remaine in possession of it: But through their fall, i. accidentally and indirectly, saluation is befallen to the Gentiles. i. A doore and way of Gods grace is opened vnto them, so that they are hereby cal­led and brought into Gods Church and kingdome.

If the fall of them, i. their fewnesse and small number, bee the riches of the world, i. so further the calling of the Gentiles, how much more shall their aboundance, (doe) i. when the greatest number of them shall bee called, and embrace the Gospell, then they shall much more fur­ther it.

And the further meaning hereof is, that if their fall can against nature doe it, much more their fulnesse, ray­sing vp, and calling, according to nature will effect it. for faith is of greater power and validity, then infide­litie, and grace then corruption, and the Iewes if they had beleeued, had both confirmed the trueth of God, and by their doctrine and example wonne many, whome now by their obstinaci [...] they haue estranged and lost.

Question. Through their fall.

Quest. Can the Church fall away from the couenant, grace, and fauour of God?

Ans. The body in generall may, (I meane) those that are onely outwardly called, and the ministery of the Gospell may be (as it is often) taken from them, and so they fall away to Atheisme, heresie, or prophanesse: for God alwayes hath his elect, which come to Christ, and shall neuer bee cast out, Io [...] 6.17. Ier. [...]2.31. Luke. 22.32. God putteth his feare in their hearts and they shall neuer depart from him. Thirdly Christ pray­eth for them, and is alwayes heard. Lastly, the golden chaines of saluation.Rom. 8.30. viz. predestination, calling, iustifi­cation, and glorification, is, nor can bee neuer dissolued or broken.

2. Question. Through their fall saluation is hapned to the Gentiles.

Qu. Are they excused that by their vnbeleefe and vn­thankfulnesse, giue an occasion vnto other mens con­uersion?

Ans. No, no more then Iudas, who by his treason and hanging of himselfe, ministred an occasion (viz. acci­dentally) to the calling and surrogating of Matthias in his roome. For first, they insteed of giuing good exam­ple (which they are bound to doe) offend and scanda­lize others: Secondly the good commeth not from them as any causes or proper instruments of it, but is to be as­cribed to Gods goodnesse and wisedome onely, who can and often doth out of darkenesse bring light, and out of sinne draw good. Lastly, theeues, robbers, mur­therers and oppressors, giue occasion of enacting and executing of good lawes, yet no thankes to them, for they had no such intention: secondly, in regarde of themselues, their sinnes are farre more vile and horrible, then the good that commeth accidentally by it.

Haue they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid.

Here we may note and obserue Gods goodnesse,Doctr. and the constancie of his eternall loue in Christ to his chil­dren; whom hee loueth once,Iohn. 13.3. hee loueth euer, hee doth not for the vnthankfulnesse of many or most, breake off all occasion to doe good to his (though neuer so few in number, and neuer so odious and contemptible in the world,) If there bee but one Noah and his family in the world that truly serueth him, hee will remember and saue them, when all the world besides perisheth. If there be but one Lot in Sodome, hee shall bee preserued when all the rest are consumed; though Christs flocke bee a little flock, yet they shall inherite a kingdome: and they whom the Lord shall finde waking and well dooing at his comming (albeit they bee neuer so rare) they shall be blessed.Luk. 12. v. 37.

The reason is, Gods couenant is vnchangeable, and reacheth vnto a thousand generations, and the infidelity of men cannot make his faith and truth in performance of his promises of none effect:Rom. 3. v. 3 [...] Secondly God is iust, and doth not (as wee see amongst men) punish and condemne the iust for the vniust.

Vse. This must encourage and confirme vs in the course of godlinesse, and in sauing our selues from the common corruption of faith or manners, wee shall not loose our reward. Bee the times neuer so corrupt, religi­on neuer so abolished, sinne neuer so rife, Atheisme and superstition neuer so much swarme and abound, yet God thinketh neuer the worse of his, or thereby taketh an occasion to handle them roughly: but hee maketh a distinction and difference betweene the righteous and the wicked,Mal. 3.8. betweene him that serueth God, and him that serueth him not.

2. Vse. Here is condemned the bad and vniust practise of some, that for one man of a calling or profession that falleth and offendeth, taketh occasion rashlye to [Page 42] censure and condemne all; as though all the Apostles should be condemned of couetousnesse and treason be­cause Iudas was such; or all holy Deacons of Apostacie, Idolatry and fornication, because Nicholaus proued to be such; or all professors of lying and indirect dealing, be­cause Ananias and Saphyra his wife were detected to be such, and therefore extraordinarily punished, whereas in this bad and worst world, wee may meruaile that any remaines good, rather then all or most are such. Se­condly, the number of the good is euer farre lesse then the number of the wicked.

By their fall, saluation is come to the Gentiles.

Doctr.God in his wisdome doth so order and dispose of the things of men, that hee doth turne those things which in and of themselues are euill and hurtfull, vnto occasion of good. Hee intendeth, worketh, and effecteth alwayes good, albeit the instruments intend and worke ill. The Alchymists of our time (notwithstanding all their paines, prating and practising) can neuer turne and conuert base mettalls into gold: but God can, and often doth, turne euill into good.Rom. 8.. ve. 28 Thus [...]hee turned the malice, enuie and ill affection of them that put Christ to death, to mans saluation: Ioseph his selling into Aegipt, and his long imprisonment, to his great and high aduancement, [...]d the releeuing and preferment of his old Father, and of all his enuious brethren; and thus hee directed the infirmi­tie of Abraham, and the Mid-wiues in lying, into their safetie; and Dauid before Achis faining himselfe madde, into Dauids preseruation.

Vse. Let none then that feare God bee terrified and daunted with the blustring threatnings, or furiousnesse of the wicked against them; but in faith, patience and silence, commend themselues and their cause to God, for hee will direct all to good, and out of euill pre­mises, draw good conclusions. Psal. 38. & Psal. 112.

To prouoke them to follow them.

See heere and obserue the great wisedome and louing kindnesse of God towards his children,Doctr. who by his fa­uour shewed vnto others; and by substituting others in­to their places, maketh them ashamed of their vnthank­fulnesse, and laboureth to stirre vp in them a desire and purpose of reconcilement.Deut. 32. Because (saith the Lord) they haue mooued mee to iealousie with that which is not God: they haue prouoked mee to anger with their vanities: I will moo [...]e them to iealousie with (those that are) no people: Ver. 21. I will prouoke them to anger with a foolish nation. And herein God dealeth with them as a tender Father with his vnkinde or disobedient childe that will not come to him,Rom. 10.19▪ hee taketh another sonne in his armes, or setteth him betweene his legges, embraceth, praiseth, and maketh much of him, hereby correcting the stub­bernesse of his other sonne, and prouoking him to seeke for the like fauour and acceptance.

1. Vse. Hereby are condemned those that by their Ido­latrie (as the Papists doe) or else with others, by their arrogancie, pride and contempt, alienate and deteine the Iewes from Christianity.

2. Vse. Secondly, let vs endeuour by our pure and sin­cere seruing of God, by our holy zeale, by our godly life and iust dealing,Math. 5. ve. 16. to [...] giue light vnto the Iewes, and at length to prouoke them to emulation, and so to winne them, that there may be vnder Christ the head, [...]one fould, and one shepheard. Iohn. 10. v. 27.

3. Vse. Let vs, as we be waile their hardnesse of heart, & vile contempt of Christ and his Gospell: so dayly and heartily with that Elizaeus of our age, now in glory, pray for their conuersion, and with that reuerend Father say. O Lord Iesu, Maister Beza his praier for the Iewes. thou doest iustly reuenge the contempt of thy selfe, and this vnthankefull people is worthy whom thou shouldest most sharpely punish: But O Lord, remember thy couenant [...], and regarde the afflicted for thy names sake: Also grant vnto vs, that are of all men most vnworthy, [Page 44] whom notwithstanding thou hast counted worthy of thy merci [...], that wee profiting in thy grace, may not bee instru­ments of thy wrath against them, but that wee may rather by the knowledge of thy worde, and by the examples of an holy life, through the working of thy holy spirit, reduce them to the right way, that thou maiest once bee glorified for euer of all nations and people. Amen.

The fall of them, the riches of the world.

Quest. Can good come of euill? and saluation of the Gentiles come from the fall of the Iewes? is here the corruption and dying of one, the cause and generation of another?

Ans. Although euill can neuer produce good as the proper cause of it: yet indirectly and by occasion it may worke it. Thus wee see that from euill manners and the corrupt behauiour of men, good lawes haue their begin­ning and originall.

Secondly, the omnipotencie, and infinite maiestie of him, that at the first drew light out of darkenesse, can draw good out of euill.

The riches of the world, the riches of the Gentiles.

Doctr.Here by riches is meant the sauing knowledge of the Gospell, the grace of Gods spirit, remission of sinnes, and the assured promise and expectation of eternall life, whence I gather and propound this doctrine. That the grace and knowledge of God, is the onely true and last­ing riches, and that alone that maketh the owners and possessors blessed. Hence the godly poore, are sayde to be rich in faith, Iam. 2.5. to be riche in GOD, Luke. 12.21.

This is the true riches, and properly the [...]r o [...]ne, for they shall neuer bee taken away from them, Luk. 16.11, 12 and they that are possessed of them shall neuer hunger nor thirst. Io. 4.

This is the treasure hidde in the field of the Church, which when a man hath found, bee hideth, [Page 45] preserueth it, Math. 13.44. and for ioy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath and buyeth that field.

This is that pretious pearle which a marchant finding sel­leth all that he h [...]th and buyeth. V. 46.

And as a man, (albeit otherwise, as poore and misera­ble as Lazarus,) being possessed with no worldly goods and hereditaments,A similitude. yet if hee haue of his owne a goodly pretious and costly Iewell he cannot bee but rich: euen so he that is enriched, with the pretious Iewell of the grace and knowledge of God, albeit hee otherwise haue nothing, yet before God hee is verie rich. That Gods Sonnes are rich (albeit they are in the account and esti­mate of the world and in worldly respects they are many times poore and bare,) the Scriptures in other places af­ford plentifull Testimonies. 1. Cor. 3.21. Ephesi. 2.17. 1. Tim. 6.19.

1 Vse. Wherefore let vs not dote vpon earthly and pe­rishable things, which can neuer make the possessors happy and blessed before God: but let the word of God dwell richly and plentifully in vs, let vs seeke to com­passe the knowledge of it with all care and indeauour; for of all other things it is most pretious, and it alone be­ing tempered and receiued by faith, doth solace and satis­fie the heart, and yeeldes true and perfect contentment vnto it.

2 Vse. We must so labour and so order the matter that Christ be our treasure and our rich pearle and where our treasure is, Math. 6.21. there must our heart bee also: otherwise if wee make neuer so goodly and great purchases in the world, and bee neuer so stored and furnished with worldly wealth, and want this spirituall treasure, this spirituall gould, siluer, Iewels &c. we are in the eyes of God, and so shalbe one day declared before the eyes of all men, to bee most beggarly and banckrupt, naked and ignoble. Luk. 12.21. Apoc. 3.17.

V. 13 For in that I speake to you Gentiles, in as much as I am an Apostle of the Gentiles I magnifie (or [Page 46] adorne) mine office.

V. 14. (To trie) if by any m [...]anes, I might prouoke them that are of my flesh to follow them, and might saue some of them.

Paraphrase. I speake to you Gentiles, viz. which are called from a­mong the Gentiles: in as much as I am an Apostle of the Gentiles. i. I haue beene called of Christ, principally that I should bee the Doctor of the Gentiles, that I might car­rie his name before them. Act. 9.15. Gal. 2. ver. 7. and 8. I magnifie mine office. i. I ommit nothing that may ap­pertaine to set it forth and make it famous and illustri­ous, for this is glorious to my ministery. 1 Cor. 15.10. 1. Thess. 2. vers.

If by any meanes I might prouoke. i. by preaching and my example stirre vp, them that are of my flesh▪ i. those that are sprung of the same Ancestors and so entirely be­loued, to follow them. i. to beleeue in Christ and embrace the gospell, and might saue some of them. i. bring to the o­bedience of faith and, by consequence, to saluation.

Q. It is proper to God alone to conuert men to God, how then can the ministers be said to conuert & saue? he alone giueth faith. Eph. 2.20 he alone giueth repentance. 2. Tim. 2.25. and hee alone softneth and mollifieth the heart. Ezek. 32?

An. God conuerteth and saueth as the proper effitient cause and author of it, working inwardly and making the ministers doctrine effectuall, but the ministers and prea­chers do it as outward meanes and instruments, propoun­ding, offring and applying Gods promises vnto their hearts, whose ministery is onely so farre-forth sauing and conuerting, as it pleaseth God to prosper & blesse it. Act. 8. v. 31.37.38. Act. 10.43. 2. Cor. 5▪ v. 18. Act. 16. v. 14.

V. I magnifie my Ministery▪ that I might prouoke them, and might saue some of them.

Wee, here from Pauls practice and paines in the ador­nation of this ministery, learne, wherein the dignitie, [Page 47] ornament and true honor of the ministery doth consist, not so much in titles, pompe, prebends, multiplication of benefices, glorious apparrell, eminencie and superiority of place; (albeit there is and needes must bee an inequa­lity and difference of order and degrees, in the ministers for composing of controuersies and auoyding of confu­sion) as in diligence of teaching, in aduancing true reli­gion, doctrine and life, and in winning many to Christ. 2. King. 2.12. Act. 20. ver. 28.

The reasons hereof are these. First God hath ordained them and their calling to this end Act. 26. and if they execute it not their sinne is greeuous and their iudgment most fearefull. Secondly hereby Gods name is magnified amongst men; and the sweet oyntment and smell▪ of his gospell is dispersed farre and wide. Thirdly they confirme their ministery and comfort their soules here, and gaine addition of glory in the life to come. 2. Cor. 2.16. Apoc. 11. Dan. 12.3.

Vse. The vse hereof is first to taxe and condemne the couetous, idle, worldly, vitious, vnteaching, dumbe, ab­sent, and negligent ministers, who because either they do not Gods worke at all (especially in preaching, or els▪ exe­cute their functions very negligently, are subiect and lie open to Gods curse, and are to answere for the dam­nation of so many soules as perish through their de­fault, Hier. 48.10. Ezek. 33. vers. 6. and 8. Acts 20▪26.27.

2 Vse. Secondly ministers neglecting all other by-matters that nothing concerne them, and the hunting and hauking after worldly goods and glory must striue with all diligence to performe their duties, and to make this their onely scope and marke to spread Christ his gospell farre and neere, and so to conuert and saue soules. 2. Tim. 4. ver. 2. and 3. Act. 26. ver. 18.

V. Which are my flesh, and chap. 9. ver. 3. my brethren, my kinsmen.

[Page 48] Doctr.Out of these words the instruction naturally ariseth, viz. the spirit of Christ doth not make men stockes and blockes, or bereaue them of naturall affection, (for these are of God, they are in themselues good, and without the helpe and ministery whereof, we can neither truly serue God; nor performe the duties of righteousnesse and loue to men) but it rather causeth and confirmeth them.

This sympathy and indulgent affection appeared most notably in Christ Iesus in weeping ouer the Cittie Ieru­salem, and bewayling the aproching ruine of it, it mani­festly also discouered it selfe towards Mary his Mother, whom hee so much respected and had such a prouident care of,Act. 9. v. 21.22.23. and here it (as in other places) appeared most eminently in Paul, who with the often hazard of his owne life, labored the Iewes conuersion.

Vse. Let vs haue a due regard to procure good, spiritual and corporall to our country and kinsfolkes, for this both nature and religion requireth and commendeth; If nature bind vs to prouide for and doe good to our parents, chil­dren and kinsfolke, much more must grace and religion bind and vrge vs to care for their spiritual good and com­fort.

And might saue some of them.

Obs. 2. We learne here that the preaching and ministe­rie of the gospell, is not a matter onely of ciuility, credit or a bare letter, but the power of God, the worlds salua­tion, the immortall seed, and to the Elect the sweet sauor of life vnto life. Act. 13.46.47. 2. Cor. 2.16. 1. Pe. 1.23. and this it was that specially exalted Capernaum to Hea­uen, and filleth citties and townes full of spirituall ioy. Acts 8.8.

The reason hereof is, because God hath annexed a pro­mise therevnto, and is effectuall, and powerfull hereby to draw and saue all that belong vnto him. Mat. 28.19.20. [...]

1 Vse. It condemneth the Swink-feldains, and the A­theists of the world, that thinke the word preached is not of force and power to conuert any; for they looke vnto the outward sound and letter onely, and not to the powe [...], [Page 49] and promise of God who worketh effectually in it and by it in all them that belong vnto him. Romanes 1.16. 1. Cor. 1. ver. 24.

2 Vse. Let not men despise, contemne and reiect the holy ministery, but thinke and speake alwaies honorably of it, let men herein acknowledge Gods goodnesse to­wards them, and accept of the riches and treasures of his grace hereby offered vnto them. For albeit it cannot profit and auaile any thing to saluation without the assi­stance of the holy spirit: Yet by the helpe of it, which al­waies accompanieth it in the elect, al that are to be saued, are ordinarily won. Hence no Eunuch conuerted with­out a Philip, no Cornelius without a Peter, and no Lydia without a Paul.

V. 15. For if the casting away of them bee the reconciling of the world▪ what shall their receiuing bee but life from death?

V. 16. For if the first fruites bee holy, so is the whole lumpe, and if the roote bee holy so are the branches.

If the casting away of them, Paraphr. viz. i. the greatest part of the Iewes, bee the reconciling of the world. i. serue and tend to the calling of the Gentles whereby they are reconci­led vnto God, what shall the receiuing be. i. the calling of the fulnesse of the Iewes, by which they that before were cast off, shall againe be admitted and receiued into the Church; but life from death. i. a recouery and bringing of spirituall life againe to the Iewes that were so many hun­dred yeares dead in their sinnes, and also their restitution & fulnesse shal giue an occasion of quickning to the Gen­tiles,Cal. in hunc locum. and of enriching many with the knowledege of Christ and saluation, & so of enlarging Gods kingdome, both amongst Iewes and Gentiles, and hence by reason of the common felicity shalbe the true and perfect [...]oy of the world.

[Page 50] For if the first fruites be holy so is the whole Lump. i. For as then when the Israelites had offred the first fruites of their bread and loaues vnto God, all the whole Lumpe and rest of the fruites were hereby blessed and sancti­fied vnto them, that they might with good conscience bake, knead and feed vpon them: Euen so, if Abraham Isack and Iacob their stock, fathers and founders of their Nation, were (especially) by reason of Gods couenant holie and accepted with GOD: so shall the elect of their posterity bee (in some sort) fauoured for their Fathers sake, And if the roote bee holy. i. full of the iuice and sappe of grace, so shall the branches. i. The holie remainers by force of GODS coue­nant shall receiue and drawe iuice, grace and goodnesse from it.

Q. If the conuersion of the Iewes shalbe not onely vnto them, but also vnto the Gentiles a spirituall resur­rection, and life from the dead, and this must needes bee a little before Christ his second comming, how can this place then agree, to and accord with, that in Luke where it is sayd? But when the Sonne of man commeth shal hee finde faith on the earth? Luk. 18.8. and with that to­wards the end of the world Sathan must bee loosed▪ Apoc. 20.17. and seduce the people of the world.

Ans. They may very well and aptly bee thus recon­ciled by distinction: That the last times of the world shalbe happie in respect of the benefits of Christ and the light of the Gospell; and likewise in regard of the gathering togither of the Church of Iewes and Gentiles throughout the world.

But they shalbe vnhappie and miserable by reason of the worlds vnthankefulnesse and the seducement of Antichrist, who shall not be (wholy) abolished before Christ his commming.

Secondly, the number of Atheists, Hipocrites, Apos­tataes and prophane persons shall incomparably farre exceed the number of those that truely feare God and sincerely serue him: yet, that Church shall neuer wholy [Page 51] cease but vnder the tirany of Antichrist, there shall re­maine not a few that shall rightly call vpon Gods name, and all the elect shalbe saued, whom the Lord out of all the families, nations, and kindreds of the earth hath marked with a certaine marke of Election and adop­tion.

Or thus, in that generation or age, wherein the Iewes shalbe conuerted, there shalbe much faith and zeale vpon the earth, but in the next following wherein many false Christs shall seduce many,Apoc. 7.9. then there shalbe (almost) none.

What shall their receiuing bee but life from death?

Q. Shall not the generall calling the conuertion of the Iewes bee in occasion of the diminishing and reiec­tion of the Gentiles?

A. No, but a reuiuing of their faith and a quickning of the word. For the ouerflowing and streaming foun­taine of Gods mercie and goodnesse is neuer drawne drie, and the more that men vse it, the more it runneth out and sloweth.

Secondly, if that which is euill in it selfe. viz. the fall of the Iewes was sauing to the Gentiles (albeit acciden­tally and by occasion) much more that which is good off, and by it selfe, shall produce and bring forth good effects.

V. If the first fruites bee holy, then the whole Lumpe, and if the roote, then the branches.

Q. Are they, that are borne of holy parents holy, or can parents deriue and transfuse grace and holinesse in­to their children?

A. No, for they are borne and conceiued in sinne, and are by nature the children of wrath, but they are holy by couenant and promise onelie, whether they bee Iewes or Gentiles, according to the tennor of [Page 52] the couenant I wilbe thy God and the God of thy seed for euer. Gen. 17.7. and Gall. 3.9. and they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

Secondly holy and beleeuing parents beget not chil­dren as they are holy and beleeuing, (for this proceedeth onely from grace and Gods free promise) but as they are men and naturall parents; and therefore that which is borne of the flesh is flesh (as all are by nature) and that which is borne (viz. againe) of the spirit is spirit. Iohn 3.6:

Q. In that the patriarckes and Ancesters of the Iewes are called, the first fruites, the roote, the naturall oliues are not the preferments, prerogatiues and excellences of the Iewes farre greater then of the Gentiles?

Rom 5.2.Ans. Yes, much euery manner of way, but not in re­pect of righteousnesse and merite, for herein they are e­quall and all one Eph. 2.23.Eph. 2. ver. 3 but in outward priuiledges and ornaments onely.

Question What then were then the speciall and singu­lar ornaments and prerogatiues of the Iewes?Rom. 9.4.5

Ans. Nine specially (as they are numbred by Saint Paul). First the glorious title of Israelites, which name Iacob first obtained by reason of wrestling and preuai­ling with the Angell.Gene. 32. ver. 24.25.

Secondly the Adoption to bee Gods people in generall. Thirdly the Glorie. i. the honour and dignity, in that the Lord of glory did (as it were) dwell amongst them signes of whose speciall presence were the Arke and the Temple.

Fourthly, the couenants, that is not onely the testament but also many compactes and the agreements that pas­sed betweene GOD and the people.

Fiftly the giuing of the law, Moral, Iudicial, Ceremonial, vnder, which is comprehended the Kingly dignity and Magistracie.

Sixtly the seruice of God, that is, the whole Leuiticall Ministerie, and the Administration of Gods worship.

Seuenthly the promises, that is, of earthly and spiri­tuall [Page 53] blessings, and of the Gospell promised to the Fa­thers. Rom. 1. v. 2. Eightly the honorable descent from the holy Fathers and Ancestors, for whose sake God doth often times blesse the posteritie: Ninthly and lastly, the hauing of Christ for their kinsman, Noel. A kinsman. for of them concer­ning the flesh came Christ, who is God blessed for euer-more.

Vers. 15. If the casting away of them, &c? what the reconciling, &c.

Obs. The conuersion of the nation of the Iewes, shall be the worlds restauration, and shall wonderfully con­firme the faith of the Gentiles, Rom. 11.12. Ioh. 10.16.

The reason hereof is, for that they both shall haue perfect ioy, when both Iewes and Gentiles shall alike enioy the common [...]elicitie, and all scruples, doubts, and all causes of any pretended separation, shall bee taken away and remooued.

Secondly, an increase, augmentation and an honor and ornament shall be hereby added to the Church.

Vse. Let vs therefore desire and seeke after their con­uersion, and heartely pray for it, and by writing, disputes, doctrine, and holy example, further and promote it, for this shall redound to Gods glory, and the amplification and improouement of our owne, both temporall and eternall happinesse.

Ver. 15. Be but life from death.

In that by the Ministerie of the Gospell,Doctr. the Iewes which were dead in sinne, are restored to life, and the Gentiles faith reuiued:Rom. 1.16. wee learne hence the sauing ver­tue, and effectuall power of it.

The first reason hereof is, because it is the power of God to saluation, Rom. 1.16. in all the Elect, for herein God reuealeth his true and absolute righteousnesse, with which life and sal­uation is alwaies ioyned, and by the meanes and ministe­rie hereof, it is conueied and communicated to them that receiue and obey it.

[Page 54] 1 Pet 5. V. 23.Secondly it is the immortall seed of regeneration and eternall life; for hereby God doth call men to bee his children and doth conuert them,Heb. 4.13. hee raizeth and crea­teth faith in them, and doth adopte and regenerate them.

Vse. 1. The first vse hereof is, to learne vs, not onely to magnifie and haue the Gospell in high account and esteeme, that bringeth such comfort and commoditie with it; but also to receiue it, yea to temper it (as men doe mixe and dulcifi [...] their tart wine with suger) with faith, and to apply it to our owne selues, otherwise it will bee altogether vnprofitable vnto vs.

Vse. 2. Secondly wee must hereby bee induced and perswaded to leade and liue a new life according to the tenor of the Gospell and the intent of the word of God,Titus. 2. V. 11. For the grace and Gospell of Christ hath brightly appeared, teaching vs to deny vngodlinesse and worldly lusts, and to liue iustly, godlyly, and soberly in this present world. Titus 2.11.12.

Vse. 3. Thirdly hereby also wee are remembred and put in minde from whence the. Gospell hath his credit, authoritie and estimation, not from the approbation of mans reason, nor from the applause of the worlde, nor from the persons of the Ministers, but from God, and from the admirable and supernaturall effects and fruites of it:2 Tim. 3.16. For it is giuen by inspiration, it is the voyce and letter of GOD and is autentike of, and in it selfe, and no other doctrines haue any credit, authoritie or pow­er but so farre forth as they receiue it from the Scrip­ture or accord with it.

Verse 16.If the first fruites be holy so is the whole lumpe, &c.

Obs. Heere is commended the goodnesse of GOD and the truth of his couenant of grace, that doth re­dound and extend it selfe to posteritie and succeeding generations, euen from generation to generation Exod 20. Psal. 3. Ver. 9. Psal. 89. Ver. 33.34. Psal. 103 Ver. 17.

The reason hereof is, his truth and couenant doth not [Page 55] depend vppon any creature or thing, without him­selfe, but onely vppon him-selfe and therefore can by no outward meanes be nullified or made frus­trate.

Vse. Seeing that GOD is vnchangeable, true, and cannot deceiue in word or deede;Heb. 13. Ver. 5.6. we are put in minde of our duty, namely to trust in GOD who neuer fai­leth nor forsaketh them that relye vppon him; and not in men who are lyars, hollow hearted and ligh­ter then vanitie it selfe, Psalme. 62▪ 9. Psalme

Vse. 2 Lette vs then by our pietie, godlynesse and goodnesse, labour to bring a blessing vppon our poste­ritie: For the children and posteritie many times fare the better and are respected for their beleeuing and holy fathers sake: woe then to ignorant, Popish, Atheisticall, lewd, licentious, blaspheming and filthy minded and liuing parents, who by their ill example not onely peruert and poyson their children, but also bring vppon and deriue the cursse of GOD vnto them who doth visit the iniquitie of the Fathers vpon the Children vnto the third and fourth generation of them that hate him. Exod. 20. v. 5

Vse. 3. Wee must bee admonished and aduised here­by, that wee doe not from mens vnworthynesse and present condition take occasion rashly to condemne them, and imperiously to insult ouer them. But rather ascend higher, and consider the roote and foundation of the couenant, and proceed to their ho­ly Ancestors, that wee may know that the bles­sing of the couenant remaineth in them:Rom 3. V. 3. For no mens sinnes and vnworthynesse can make GODS faith and couenant frustrate▪ yea many times where sinne abounded, grace (by GODS mercifull disposition) abounded much more, not to incourage any man in sinne, but that it might appeare that in the matter of iustification and saluation, Gods mercy is all in all.

[Page 56]Vers. 17. And though some of the branches bee broken of and thou being a wilde Oliue tree, was graft into [or for] them, and made partaker of the roote and fatnesse of the Oliue tree.

Vers. 18. Boast not thy selfe against the branches, and if thou boast thy selfe, thou bearest not the roote, but the roote thee.

Paraph. Though some of the branches, that are hypocrites and voyde of good workes bee broken of, id est. reiected and cease to bee a Church by reason of their vnbeliefe, and thou being a wilde Oliue. i. a branche and bough of it, and therefore naturally barren, vnfruitfull, and bearing no­thing but bitter leaues, was graft in for them, and partaker of the roote i. of the iuice that commeth from the roote Abraham, and floweth vnto all the branches, and of the fatnesse, i. of the graces, promises, and all the benefits, and good things spirituall and outward made vnto vs in Abraham, of the Oliue tree, the Church of the Israelites which sprang from him.

Ver. 19. Boast not thy selfe against the branches, i. (according to the meaning of the Greeke word [...]) do not shake thy necke against them by insulting, triumphing, and crowing ouer them, for if thou boastest thy selfe, thou bearest not the roote. i. if you proudly glory and vaunt that some branches being broken of, thou art ingrafted into the tree of the Church, know thou that the Church of the Iewes receiueth nothing from thee, but the roote thee, i. thou hast thy foundation and sustentation, and whatsoeuer thou hast from this, that thou without any merite of thine art ingrafted into the Church of God: neither doth the Church need thee, but thou needest the Church, that thou maiest be a member of it, therfore thou must not for the vnbeliefe of some Iewes scornefully and proudly contemne and rage against the whole body of the people.

Q. Some of the branches bee broken off. Can the true members of the Church become Infidels, and so bee bro­ken off from the fellowship of the Church?

[Page 57] Ans. No, if they be liuing members, and be truely by faith ingrasted into Christ; for Christ will loose none of those that the Father hath giuen him to bee saued, Iohn. 17. but these that fall away and are broken off, are onely branches and members in regarde of the couenant, and in their owne conceit, and the charitable opinion of the Church, but not truely and really, and before God, seeing they are none of Gods elect, and are destitute of faith, and the spirit of Christ.

Quest, Who▪ and how many sortes of people are or may bee cut off and fall away from the Church?

Ans. Two sorts. First, those that be ingrafted into the Church by the tenor and authoritie of the Generall co­uenant onely, whereby God promiseth that hee will be their God, and the God of their seede,Gal. 4.28. & 29. but yet are not elected, for euery one that is Abrahams sonne according to the flesh, is not a sonne of promise.

Secondly, they that indeed receiue the seede of the word [as many reprobates doe] but they mixe it not with faith, and it hath no roote in them, neither are they renued and inwardly changed by it. The word in these may be, and soone is either vtterly lost, or else choaked and peruerted, and so they may be cut off, and fall away finally and wholy.

And (to conclude all in a word,) they are only & alone cut and broken off, that are Abrahams sonnes according to the flesh onely [as the body of the Iewes generally were in Saint Pauls time, and sithence] but the sonnes of promise, or Abrahams sonnes by faith neuer are, nor euer can bee broken off, bee their number neuer so small, nor their temptations neuer so great and permanent.

3. Quest. How are men ingrafted into the Church?

Ans. First, by an outward calling, and by an outward profession and approbation of the word and sacraments. Secondly by Baptisme, as a seale of our adoption and en­trance or matriculation into the Church. Thirdly, by the testimony and in the opinion of the Church, and so may a reprobate or hypocrite be ingrafted. Fourthly, in Gods [Page 58] secret counsell and by the spirrit of faith and seale of Gods holy and spirit. hereby men with a prepared and sanctified hart receiue Gods word and keepe it, these alone Christ draweth vnto him and inwardly chan­geth and transnatureth them vntill hee perfect them and bring them to the end of their hope, that is, the saluation of their soules. and thus are the Elect onely ingrafted and therefore can neuer perish.

Doct.Some branches are broken of.

Seeing that Christ cannot abide barren and fruitlesse vines,Iohn 15.2. that are deuoid of faith and repentance, and hath by reason hereof cut off and reiected not onely the na­tion of the Iewes generally (for the time) but also ma­ny countries and kingdomes amongst vs Gentiles,Luke 3. Ver. 7.9. wee must make vse hereof and learne hereby both to abound and increase in faith and good workes. Iohn 15.2.

The reason hereof is, for that the anger and indig­nation of God goeth with it, and temporall plagues and punishments (which are but forerunners of euer­lasting iudgement otherwise) surprize and ceaze vppon vs.Math. 23.23. Math. 3. V. 8. Math. 7.21. Math. 21 41.43.

Secondly all our faith and profession without works and fruites is not sincere and sound before God, but cop­per and counterfeyt. For true faith and regeneration can no more in their proper time & opportunity be without fruite and obedience, then the sun without light, the fire without heat & the springing fountaine without water.

Vse. 1. Wherefore let vs to our outward profession of the Gospell adde and associate the continuall traine and attendant of good workes of pietie & deuotion towards God, and of loue and iustice towards men.

Thus God hath commanded, our faith requireth (for the testimony and cherishing of it) our neighbours need it, and God both regardeth and (in fauor) rewardeth it: o­therwise, if we bring forth no fruit of godlinesse & good­nesse, it followeth that we neuer had true communion with Christ, and therefore in time we shall bee disclosed [Page 59] and discouered to haue beene but meere hypocrites, and it shall be notified to our selues and to others, that wee neuer did appertaine vnto him, and therefore we shal ne­uer bee admitted into the Court and Pallace of heauen, but, as vnprofitable seruants, cast into h [...]ll fire.

Thou being a wilde Oliue tree.2 Doctr.

In that wee Gentiles are compared to a wilde Oliue, wee heare learne this instruction, that as wee Gentiles, euen the best of vs, are naturally, and before our conuer­sion vnto Christ, barren, fruitlesse and cursed trees▪ vn­toward and vnapt to any goodnesse, and wholy disposed and inclined vnto euil. Gen. 6. V. 5. Titus ▪ 3▪ V. 3. Ephes. 2. [...].2.3. Psal. 1. Cor.

The first reason hereof is, because all men are con­ceiued and borne in Originall sinne,Psal. 51. V. 5. and so are wholy corrupted in all the powers and fa [...]ulties of body and soule, so wee are become crab trees, wilde Oliues, wilde Vines, and wholy degenerate. Secondly, all the actions of the Gentiles considered,Titus 1. V. [...]5.16. Rom. 14.23. Hebr. 11.6. as they are Gentiles and men vnregenerate, are in Gods sight and acceptation (albeit otherwise neuer so laudable & alowed before men) no­thing but sin, for without faith it is impossible to please God, and whatsoeuer is not of faith is sin.

Vse. 1, If we would iudge equally and charitably of o­ther mens sins and follie, we must [...]ooke vnto our owne Originall sinne and to our stuffe at home▪ and obserue wherein others haue the preheminence before vs so shall we censure others with more conscience & compassion, and be the more preserued from filling our selues.

Vse. 2. Let no man trust in his owne natural goodnesse, vertue and worthynesse,Luke. 18. V. 13. which is nothing but sinne, but lette him with the poore publicanes hold downe his head and humble himselfe before God for his sinnes, let him with the prodigall sonne cry out and say, I haue sin­ned against heauen and against God, Luke 15. v. 18.19. and I am no more wor­thy to be called Gods sonne.

Vse. 3. Let euery christian, seeing that of a wild Oliue, he is ingrafted into Gods Church, be alwaies thankfull [Page 60] for so great a benefit, and lay aside his wild & sauage na­ture, & in piety, virtue, & good workes imitate & resem­ble the noble vine Christ Iesus into whō he is ingraffed,Ephe. 5. ver. 1 for we must walke in the light, as hee is light, and walke in loue as wee haue Christ for an example, for Christ his morrall vertues are not onlie for our contemplation but for our imitation.

Vse. 4. The Ministers and Preachers of Gods word must not looke to finde the people good, for all by nature are blinde, ignorant, corrupt, rebellious sinfull; but by doctrine, exhortation, and examples to make them good, let them labour to husband and proine the vine-yard, let them gather out all the stones and rubbish of infidel­lity and superstition, and let them endeuor by continu [...]l Preaching & exhortation to beget faith in their hearers, and so to ingraft them into Christ.

V. 20. Was graffed in for them.

No man must despise boast or glory against them that be­stow a benifit vpon them,Psal. 35. ve. as here the Gentiles did against the Iewes. Thus false witnesses rose vp against Dauid, and rewarded him euil for good; he visited them in their sicknes, praied, and mourned for them, but they sought his down­fall and ruine.

The reason hereof is, for that it is pride and great vn­thankefullnesse,Hebr. 6. ver. 8 and God will punish men for it. They are like to the ground that yeeldeth to the husbandman that tilleth dresseth and manureth it, nothing but thornes and briers, and therfore is reproued nere vnto cursing, whose end is to be burned.

Vse. Seeing that we receiue the couenant and doctrine of saluation from the Iewes, and are of meere grace graf­ted in by God for them, we must humble and debase our selues before him,Iam. 1. ve. 21 and acknowledge our own vnworthi­nesse, that so we may not onely conteine our selues from contempt of others, but with meeknesse daily receiue and profit in the word grafted in vs, which is able to saue our soules.

Fatnesse of the Oliue.

[Page 61]In that here and also in the 55. of Isaiah and Luk. 14. and other places,4. Doct. the giftes, graces, and blessings, (espe­cially that concerne saluation in Christ) are compared to fatnes, fatlings, a banquet, yea to wine, hony, milke, spices, and such like delicate things, wee learne that howsoeuer the wicked ones of the world,Prou. 9. [...] Cant. 5. v. 1. glut and pamper themselues with the abundance of Gods blessings, and their flesh is fatted and fed like hogges, yet their soules pine and fa­mish; whereas the soules of the beleeuing are filled with Gods liberality and replenished with spiritual consolati­on, which is to them a speciall pawne and pledge of Gods loue and prouidence towards them.

In the Gospell they haue most sweete and delicate food,Isa. 5 5.2 not onely for the necessity but also for the delight of their soules, here their faith is engendred and strength­ened, and their trembling soules are solaced, with the most comfortable assurance of remission of sinnes, and they by the word and sacraments are fed and nourished to eternall life.

Vse. Let vs therefore seeke to feed and satisfie our selues only here, let vs loue and delight in fatnesse, and bring alwaies with vs an appetite to the word, and then shall we feed on the bread of life.

Made partakers of the roote and fatnesse of the Oliue— Boast not thy selfe against the branches.

These two members may be, and are much more aptly and iustly ioyned togither, then the mingling and blen­ding togither of some mens Merchandise and wares, ad deceptionem visus et emptoris, for better shew and vent; and from this coniunction and the consideration thereof this doctrine ariseth,Doctr. that they that either in spirituall, or temporal blessings rise by occasion of other mens ruines, and florish by reason of their decaies, must not herevpon grow high minded, and much lesse scorne and con­temne those that are falne, but rather commiserate and releeue them in what they may.

[Page 62]For first thus to offend, argueth an vnthankefull heart to God for his free mercies which they thus abuse. Se­condly, it sheweth an heart voide of equitie and com­passion; and therefore GOD in his iustice cannot but in time punish the vnthankefull, and denie meanes to those who impart none to others.

Vse 1. Wherefore in all preferments and exaltations (for the auoiding of pride and contempt of our inferi­ours,) let vs walke humbly before our God, and ascribe our aduancement and happinesse to his mere mercie and not to our ragged and sinfull merits.

Vse 2. By this doctrine are checked and condemned, some in the worke, who rather by prescription of time and secret encrochment, then by equities (perhaps) and diuine approbation, are become monopolists and engros­sers of other mens callings and commodities, and here­vpon doe not onelie like the leane kine of Aegipt eate vp the fat kine of Canaan, but (sometimes) also take oc­casion to triumph and insult ouer others that are (per­haps) better members in a common-wealth then them­selues. But herein let the offenders learne humility and practise more equity in words and deedes, and let the wronged, not apprehend matters ouer deepely, or ouer­stretch them, but commit themselues and their iust cause to the diuine prouidence, and to humaine iustice, and count it a more blessed thing to suffer wrong then to offer it

Boast not thy selfe against them.

Doctr.No men must for any temporall or spirituall grace wherewith they are endowed aboue other, be high con­ceited of themselues to detract from and despise others. Luk. 18. ver. 9.13. 1. Cor. 11.22. Iam. 2.6. 1. Cor. 4.7.8. Luk. 16.15.

The first reason hereof is, they haue not these gifts and endowements aboue others, because they are better by nature then they, for all are sinners alike, and they [Page 63] haue them not of themselues,1 Cor. 4.17 but of Gods fauour and mercy onely.

The second reason is, that God can, and often doth, for mens vnthankefulnes,Luk. 17.24 25 26. both lessen, yea, and take away his gifts and benefits from them that abuse them, either by attributing to much to themselues or scorning others.

The third reason is, because God can, and many times doth conuert those who in the iudgment of the world, are desperate and past care, examples hereof wee haue in Manasses, Luk. 13.30 Apoc. 3▪ v. 9. Paul, Mary Magdalen, and the Iaylor, and in many of them that crucified Christ, yea and in those whom Saint Iohn calleth the Sinagogue of Sathan.

Vse. This doctrine serueth to condemne a sort of iolly and flourishing professors, who because they exceede others in sharpnesse of witte, and quicknesse of ap­prehension, and because they can (better then other) ar­gue, dispute & discourse of Misteries and matters of faith and Religion, vse to swell in a conceite of their own per­fection, as though they were ye only singularists & mag­nificoes of the world, but as for their brethren, that are (perhaps) in respect of vnspotted life, guilesse dealing, pure and humble affection much before them, they, be­cause they want that outward flourish and acute appre­h [...]sion wherein themselues seeme to excell; deface, and dispraise, vilifie and despise them, whereas God regard­eth the inward parts principally, without which all out­ward things are of no acccount with him.

Thou bearest not the roote but the roote thee.

We learne here,Doctr. that we Gentiles are beholding vnto the Iewes, and in many respects inferiour vnto them, howsoeuer they (for the present) are generally cast off and plucked from the vine.Rom. 3. v. 2

For first, we haue our religion & doctrin yea the begin­ning, foundation & establishmēt of our church from thē. Isa. 2.3. but not they from vs. For the Fathers & the Pro­phets, sowed the seed of the church of the new testament:Ioh. 4. v. 38 ye couenant is deriued from thē into vs & we are changed [Page 64] into their commonwealth and not they into ours.

Secondly our Sauiour Christ God blessed for euermore, had his birth and beginning from them, and so hee came from them. Rom. 9.4.

1. Pet. 2. v. 9 and 10. Ephes 2.7. Deutr. 32Thirdly they were the chosen nation, the peculiar people, and a royall Priest-hood, when all the world besides were out of the couenant, and so no people nor beloued, yea and were without God in the world.

Lastly all the particular promises, such as were the land of Canaan, a certaine forme of gouernment, setled sacrifices, and ceremonies, the glorious Temple, particu­lar promises of long life, and of dominion annexed to the morrall law, and the preseruation of the stock amongst them, out of which the Messias should come belonged and were proper to the Iewes of the olde Testament onelie.

Vse. We must therefore acknowledge our selues deb­ters vnto the Iewes, and deepely engaged vnto them, we must bee so farre off from rendring or returning vnto them euil for good, that we must pray for their recouery, and do our vttermost dilligence, by doctrine, writing, and vnblameable life to allure and winne them to the appro­bation and acceptance of the Gospell.

V. 19. Thou wilt saie then, the branches are broken off that I might be graft in.

V. 20. Well through vnbeleife they are broken off and thou­standest by faith: be not high minded but feare.

V. 21. For if God spared not the naturall branches, [take heed] lest he also spare not thee.

Thou wilt say. i. to me Paul, why doest thou boast of the holinesse of the Iewish stocke, surely, the branches are broken off. i. they are cast away, that I might be grafted in. i. am ingrafted in the Church in their sted.

Well. i. thou saieth truely, they through their vnbeliefe are broken off. i. excommunicated and eiected out of Gods church:V. r. 21. and thou now standest by faith grafted into Gods [Page 65] Church, neither art thou yet falne into the vnbeleife of the Iewes, be not high minded. i. do not thinke proudly of thy selfe or be ouer-wise in thine owne conceit, but feare. i. remaine in true humility and in the feare of God, and be religiously carefull to preserue faith.

For if God spared not. i. but cast them off for their vnbeliefe.Verse. 2 [...]. The naturall branches, i. the Iewes borne in the Church discended from those holy Fathers, Abra­ham, Isaac, and Iacob, [take heed] least hee also spare not thee, thou that art but ingrafted in, and taken out of the wilde Oliue, maiest possibly be discouered to bee but an hypocrite, mayest fall away from the grace of God, and bee thrust out of his Church.

Be not high minded, but feare.

Quest. Is a man to doubt or stand in feare, whether he bee in Gods fauour or not, or whether hee shall certain­lie be saued or no?

Ans. No,I. Iohn. 4.18. for first Charity expelleth all slauish and ser­uile feare.

Secondly Christ forbiddeth doubting and distrust in many places.

Thirdly, doubting and distrustfull feare, maketh all the foundations and principles of faith and true religion [which need no demonstration] vncertaine and vnfruit­full vnto vs.

Fourthly, it doth extenuate Christs benefits, offer in­dignity to Gods goodnesse, and euert & peruert the na­ture and forme of faith, which is a firme assent & certaine application of Gods benefits to our selues in particuler.

Fiftly, it depriueth vs of all sweet and solide comfort in aduersity and affliction, so that our hartes faile vs, & our distracted and distressed conscience, can find no harbour and hauen to rest and repose our selues in.

Sixtly, it leaueth vs no place nor vse for praier and the right inuocation of Gods name, for how can a man possi­bly, truly, and confidently pray vnto God, of whose fa­uour and furtherance he is alwayes in doubt & suspence.

Lastly, hee that beleeueth not, maketh Christ a lyer, [Page 66] in that he will giue no credit and assent vnto the promi­ses that he propoundeth and offereth vnto him.

But feare.

Q. Why then doth the Apostle bid the Gentiles feare? If they must feare, how then can they bee certaine?

A. First Paul directeth his speech here not to euery particular person, but to the Gentiles in generall, where­in and amongst whom there might be many proud and vnmortified professors, and many doubling and dissem­bling hypocrites, for whom this admonition was very necessary

Secondly it is rather a Caue at then a Commination, & serueth not to astonish them, but to stirre them vp to more▪ carefullnesse and dilligence.

Lastly, feare in this text is not to bee vnderstood of any troubling and tormenting feare, but of a reue­rend awe of Gods iudgements, and of an holy care and indeauor to preuent and diuert the disfauor and wrath of God, which may very well consist and consort with the certainty and assurance of faith,1 Ioh. 5.18. for who­soeuer hath faith and hope, hee purgeth him-selfe and keepeth him-selfe that the euill toucheth him not.

The naturall braunches.

How can the Iewes bee truly said to bee naturall braunches, and consequently good, seeing that euen they are by Adams fall, sinners, enemies to GOD and the children of wrath, as well as others? E­phes. 2.3.

Ans. The Iewes indeed had no naturall holynesse, neither was it deriued from carnall succession, neither was their nature better then ours, but they are natu­rall braunches and were so called by reason of the couenant of grace made with them, onely, and their nation.

[Page 67]Secondly, because they were seuered and sepe­rated by GODS outward couenant and calling, ce­remonies and worshippe from all the world,Cant. 4.12 besides and were as a Fountaine sealed vp, and as a Garden in­closed. i. reserued and sanctified, for Christ his owne vse and seruice.

If God spared not the naturall branches.

Q If the naturall branches bee not spared, then they that are ingrafted into Christ by faith may bee cutte off.

Ans. The Argument followeth not, for they are called naturall, not by reason of their sound faith which they now had, but because of Gods couenant, and be­cause naturally they had their beginning from the Fa­thers. Secondly they were onely members of the visible Church wherein are many hypocrites but not of the Ca­tholike and inuisible Church.

Take heed least he spare not thee i. least he disdaine thee and cast thee off.

Ques. Can an elect or true member of the Church fall [...] ­way and so perish?

Ans. No, for they onely haue the spirit of regene­ration whereby they are sealed vnto the day of redempt­ion:Ephes. 4. 1 Ioh. 2.20. Ioh. 14.5. they alone are indued with the spirit of constancie, and Christ doth neuer cast them off. Iohn. 6.37. but the comforter doth abide with them for euer.

They may (for the time) bee depriued of the out­ward ministery and meanes of grace and saluation, 1 King. 18.19. yet they were GODS people before in his eternall counsell. Secondly benig regenerate and borne a­newe of incorruptible seede, they cannot perish nor fall away, albeit the outward meanes bee re­moued.

Ques. What are wee then to thinke and iudge of those, that from the profession of sound doctrine fall away to superstition or Atheisme, and from outward [Page 68] and apparant holynesse to open prophanesse and licenti­ousnesse, and thus liue and die, were they euer of the number of the elect or any members of the inuisible Church?

Ans. No, for the elect and members of the Catholike and inuisible Church are onely indued with sauing faith, true repentance, a liuely hope and the true loue of the godly their bretheren, which graces neuer faile, die, or are vtterly extinct: Whereas Apostates▪ and they that degenerate to Atheisme and open Prophanes, were neuer indued with true faith, repentance and other graces that accompany saluation: Well they might (for the time) haue the shadow of them, but they neuer had the truth and substance.

Luke 22. Ver. 32.Secondly Christ is alwaies, and he alone an effectuall Mediator and Intercessor for the elect onely, whereby they are so preserued in the state of grace that they can­not fall away. Wherefore Apostates and backe-sliders were Christians and members of the Church in outward apparance and shewe onely, and in their owne opinion and estimation of others, and indeed all their holynesse and profession is nothing else before God but meere formalitie and hypocrisie. And therefore all these tem­porall things and outward seemings, in time of temptati­on soone fade and fall away: and of such Christ pro­nounceth that he knoweth them not .i. he neuer did nor doth acknowledge them for any of his elect, nor approue of them.

Ques. Who and what kinde of persons fall away?

Ans. First, they that are outwardly ingrafted into the couenant, but yet are not inwardly called, nor e­lected.

Secondly they that receiue the seed of the Gospel, but without the roote of true faith, and inward change, & re­nouation of heart and affection, and these are onely the reprobate. Math. 13. V.

Ques. In what sort or in what regard doe they fall away?

[Page 69] Ans. First by their vnbeliefe and vnthankefulnesse refusing the promise made to them. Secondly by cor­rupting and choaking the seed of the word either by want of memory or vnderstanding, & of defect of change and regeneration, or absence of the full perswasion of the truth, or finally either by troubles and persecutions, or else by prosperitie, profitt and pleasures. Here-vpon the worde and Sacraments and the golden candlesticke of ye Angelicall ministery as wholy taken from them (as some­time it iustly commeth to passe) or else if they haue no meanes continued,Amos. 8.11.12. they either as recusants and meere Atheists, contemne them and refuse to vse them, or else are thereby [through their owne corruption] more hardned, blinded and darkened▪ for the more good gifts and meanes of grace which offreth vnto them, and the good motions he putteth into their mindes, the more they do corrupt and abuse them.

The branches are cutte off that I might be grafted in.

Ergo. Our dignity and worthynesse is greater then that of the Iewes,Doct.

Wee must in Gods especiall works and iudgements dilligently weye and consider the true causes and distin­guish and diffe [...]re them from those that are causes acci­dentally by occasion only (as in this verse.) For the fall of the Iewes could not be properly any efficient or pro­creant cause of the saluation of the Gentiles, the effect a­riseth from the proper cause and resembleth & reteyneth the nature of it. The reason hereof is, because the issue, e­uent and consequent may bee good, (God so ordering, directing and ouer-ruling it) when the instruments that worke onely accidentally and ayme at their owne euill ends, are euil and mali [...]ious. Thus Ioseph was exalted after all his troubles, and Iobs restitution and recouery & [...] redemption by Christ his death, was in regard of the effect and euent good, yet they wicked Instruments [Page 70] (that onely accidentally and occasionally wrought it) sinned heinously, and are not to bee excused. For if they would or had pleased God in their proceedings, three things should haue beene considered of them. First, that they had the holy Scripture for warrant. Se­condly that their affections were in tune and well com­posed. Thirdly that their ends and aymes were di­rectlie to the honor and glorie of GOD: but of these respects the blinde reprobates haue no regard.

Vse. The vse hereof, serueth to check and controule many insolent, surly and swelling Gentiles, that not rightly weighing and ballancing the true causes and reasons, did falslie imagine [and so fondly erre] that the Iewes were cut and cast off for their vnworthinesse, and that their vnbeliefe was the proper cause of their admittance and substitution into their empty places and roomes, and heereby they highly conceited them­selues, as though they were more worthy before God then the Iewes.

2. Vse. Heereby is mette with-all the pride and ill affection of some, who reioyce at other mens ruines and downe-falls, whether in religion or in outward estate, or both, whereas it is iust with God thus to giue them ouer, and they that seeme to stand, may fall into the like Apostacie and iudgments, for they by nature are made of no better mettall then others, and they stand no longer then God doth support them.

Through vnbeliefe they are broken.

Doctr.Heere wee see and vnderstand what a vile and dan­gerous sinne, misbeliefe and infidelity is, it is the roote and fountaine of all disobedience, it draweth Gods an­ger vpon vs, it hasteneth his iudgements, it depriueth vs of Gods promises, and nullifieth and maketh frustrate his couenant.

Hence it was that the Iewes were growne out of re­quest with God, lost their prerogatiues, ceased to bee Gods people, and lastly most of them were excluded from the kingdome of Heauen.

[Page 71]Vnbeliefe was the first sinne of Adam and Eue, and was the cause of their fall, and so of all the sinne and miseries that befell vnto all their posteritie.Heb. 3. v 12, Heb. 4. v. 2. Infidelitie debarred the Israelites from entering into the blessed land of Canaan, a Type of the kingdome of heauen: it is the cause of all Apostasie and reuolting from GOD and his Euangelicall trueth. It maketh Gods heauenly and sacred word vnprofitable vnto the hearers,Mark. 1 [...]. v. 16 [...]poc. 2 [...]. v. 8. it mak­eth all things impure and vnlawfull vnto men, Titus 1. verse. 14.15. and (in a word) it is the fore-runner and meritorious cause of damnation and destructi­on.

The reason hereof is, because it wilfully refuseth the grace of God offered: it doth distrust and discredit Gods word, contemne his promises, rebell against his will, and [to conclude] it reiecteth and shutteth out Christ,Math. 13 v. 58 the cause, author and finisher of redemption, happinesse and holynesse.

1. Vse. Wee must therefore beware of infidelitie and vnbeliefe, wee must be prouident that it doe not wound vs with his dartes, and then the Gun-shotte of all other temptations shall neuer blinde nor batter vs: let vs therefore put on the complet harnesse of God, and the armour of proofe, i. a liuely faith, which will quench and blunt all Sathans Dartes:1. Iohn. 5. v. 4. well may wee bee sedu­ced for a time, but not alwayes, nor vnto death, for faith preserueth the Castle of our heart, and it ouer­commeth the world.

Secondly▪ wee must alwayes thinke and speake ho­nourably of Gods word, and labour to bee riche in the knowledge of his wil, and with full purpose of heart cleaue vnseperably vnto GOD, and by assent of minde applie and claspe fast Christ Iesus, and all his sauing graces and promises vnto our owne selues, and then nothing shall bee able to dampe or daunt vs, much lesse to seclude and seperate vs from Christ, and the certaine enioyment of the heauenly Ierusalem.

[Page 72] Thou standest by faith: that is. Thou profitest in thy profession and practise of Christianitie by faith. i. by a firme assent of thy minde, relying vpon Gods grace, and acknowledging and receiuing Christ, as he is reueiled in holy Scripture, from whence this necessary collection a­riseth. The grafting in of the Gentiles into the Oliue,Doctr. doth not depend vpon their owne worthinesse, vertues, and merits, but onely vpon faith, assenting vnto and firmly apprehending Gods gratious promises. Now this faith is a free yet a most rare gift of God, not common to all professors, but peculiar onely to the elect: from it proceedeth both the beginning and the continuance of their engrafting into Christ,Heb. 3.14. and hereby wee are made partakers of Christ and of saluation, and without this faith wee are in worse estate then any vassall vnder the Turke, or any Spanish Galley slaue, for their seruice is onely bodily and temporall, but this is spirituall, hor­rible, and (if they repent not) eternall. Heb. 2. ver. 15.

1. Vse. This doctrine serueth, to argue and reprooue those that condemne the doctrine of faith, whereas with­out it there is neither iustification nor saluation. By it wee are made the children of God, Iohn. 1.12. and stand and sticke to Christ the true Vine,Eph. 3. v. 17. and hereby wee are interessed in Christ, and all his sauing merits and g [...]aces.

2. Vse. Wee must loue the Lord and feare him, for his great mercies shed vpon vs, and for his pretious promi­ses made to vs, for they are not procured by our deferts or endeuours, but frankely and freely bestowed vpon vs, of God.

3. Vse. We must nourish and preserue faith, and see that it be not of story or a temporarie faith, but a true iustify­ing faith. For a true iustifying faith is such a roote, such a foundation and assurance so built and founded vpon the Rock Christ, and the sacred Scriptures, that the gates and power of Hell cannot preuaile against it; and as for temporary and historicall faith like a flower,Ma [...]. 16.16. like pain­ting, and like guilt, and it will soone fade away and bee defaced.

Be not high minded.

When wee see proud hipocrits to contemne and con­demne other poore men for their present misbeleife and miseries,Doctr. and to admire and magnifie their owne selues they must be terrified with Gods iudgements. Isa. 28. ver. 9.10. Luk. 16.15. Apoc. 3.16 and 17. Act. 13.40.41. Math. 21. v. 33

The reason hereof is,Iude Epist. v. 23. first, that otherwise no good can bee done of them if they bee not pulled out of the fire of Gods iudgements they wilbe burned, and if they bee not violently awaked, they will droppe away and die in their slumber, as they do that are bitten by an Aspe.

Secondly for that if they will not repent they may be left without excuse in Gods sight.

Vse. 1. Let vs therefore beware and bee aduised that we do not braue out and insult vpon others, least God call and conuert them in his mercy, and plague and pu­nish vs in his iudgement, for our pride and contempt.

Vse 2. Let no man presume of his owne ability and strength, as though hee could stand by it in temptation, neither let him please himselfe in a conceite and imagina­tion of his owne constancy, as though hee might liue se­curely and dissolutely, and yet escape all danger, least God correct and plague him, for his conceitednes in suf­fering him to fall into grosse sinnes, and greeuous euill, as he hath suffered many others. 1. Cor. 10. v. 11. and 12.

But feare.

Wee must not be secure,Doctr. drowsie and presumptuous & so emplunge our selues vnaduisedly into many sinnes & punishmēts; but stand in a reuerend awe of Gods iudge­ments, suspect and misdoubt our owne secret corrupti­ons and be careful in euery action to shun and auoide ye offence & displeasure of God. The reasons herof are, this feare is ye beginning of wisdom, a part of Gods worship, and a meane to make vs blessed.Prou. 28.14. Gen 39. v. 9 Secondly, it is a notable reine and bridle to keepe and retaine vs from Apostacy and falling away from God, for he that most suspecteth his owne weaknesse and seeketh means to cure it and to [Page 74] strengthen him-selfe is of all men farthest of from pre­sumption and perilles: and here; abundan [...] cau [...]ela non nocet. i. many caueats and prouisoes are not amisse, and Gods grace is perfited through infirmitie.

Thirdly, wee are apt and ready vppon euery temp­tation to fall and offend and so deserue reiection; and therefore that wee may conteyne our selues in our duties, and to subiugate and subdue our proud flesh, wee had need euer and anon with Dauid and others, to set before our eies Gods threatnings & iudge­ments against sinne.

Vse. 1. When wee see and behold gods iudgements to ceaze vpon others, we must bee so far from rash and pre­sumptuous censuring and condemning of them, that we must first descend into our owne selues and soules, and ransacke by the light and lanthorne of Gods word, euery corner of our hearts, least that we be found iu [...]penitent and so in wrapped in the common destruction.

Vse. 2. We must by a dilligent search of our own sores, and by a narrow view & inspection of Gods law, iustice and iudgement, vse all dilligence and care to nourish and maintaine this holy feare, & so to snib and correct al high and presumptuous thoughts and conceits that may pos­sibly exalt themselues against God and his word.

Vse. 3. We must learne to decline from all occasions of offending God, and to beware of al shewe and kindes of euil, such as are lewd company, immoderate feastings, idlenesse, or the lauish spending of our time, either in pleasures and deceitfull delights, or in the affected rea­ding of fables, fained stories, play books, popish treatises and al vnfruitfull and dangerous curiosities.

Ver. 21.If God spared not the naturall branches take heed he spare not thee.

Doctr.The sinnes and punishments of other men must bee our instructions, their affliction must bee our admoni­tions, and their woes our warnings: their [...] must [Page 75] bee our [...] their roddes our remembrances and sufferings our schoolemaisters; that we do not sin against God as they did, and so drawe and pull vppon our selues the same or the like punishments. Iude. 4.7. 1 Cor. 10. V. Heb. 4. V. 11.

The first reason hereof, is, first because their sinnes and punishments haue a proportion and likenesse with our sinnes and punishments.

Secondly, God is as much displeased and offended with sinne and Apostacy now, as in time past, for hee neither doth nor can remitte ought of his zeale and iustice.

Vse. 1. We must learne to be wise-hearted and to make our election sure to our selues, and bee kept from negli­gence, vnbeleefe and security by the desertion and Apos­tacy not only of the Iewes, but also of the whole world [in a sort] for most are reuolted long agoe: the Easterne parts to the Turke and to his Alcoron, and ye Westerne parts to the Romish Antechrist and his superstition. It is not good for vs to put in aduenture our saluation with the most and multitude, vnlesse wee would perish with them: it behoueth us to beware and be pure from their distast of the truth, from their carelesnesse and hypocrisie, least God in his iustice forsaking vs, we fall into the like calamities and miseries both spirituall and bodily.

Vse. 2. Hereby are highly reproued all those that run to riot and swagger and sweare it out, & liue so loosely as though hell were broken loose, and God had dispensed with his iustice, and graunted a generall indulgence to sin & rebell against him, and yet those men beare them­selues in hand that they shall neuer be moued or see euil. These men haue no feeling of Gods iudgements,Ezek. 9. V. 9. they are hidden from their eyes and therefore they abuse the Gospell to all carnall libertie,Psal. 50. V. 21. and doe and speake what they list.Psal. 10. V. 5. But the euer-watching eie of Gods iustice euer looketh vppon them, hee will one day summon them to iudgement &, accordingly, if they amend not, measure out and execute iudgement against them.


[Page 76] Behold therefore the bountifulnesse and soueritie of God: towards them which are falue, seueritie: but toward thee bountifulnesse, if thou continue in his bountifulnesse, or else thou shalt be cut of. Ver. 23. And they also if they abide not stil in vn­beliefe shal bee graffed in, for God is able to graft them in againe.

Ver. 2 4. For if thou wast cut of the Oliue tree, which was wilde by nature, and wast grafted contrary to nature in a right Oliue, how much more shall they that are grafted by nature, be graf­ted in their owne Oliue tree.

Paraph. Beholde .i. Consider O thou beleeuing Gentile, whosoeuer thou art, the bountifulnesse and seueritie of God. Viz. in the reprobation and casting off of the Iewes, and the election and calling of the Gentiles, that thou maist be preserued thereby in Gods feare; towards them truly that haue falne, that is toward the Iewes that haue Stumbled at Christ, the stone of offence, and are become vnbeleeuers, and cutte from the Church: seueritie, but towards thee bountifulnesse, which thou shalt inioy alwaies: if thou shalt continue in his bountifulnesse, namely in the fauor of God & in faith, and thou dost not by thine vnbeliefe and other heynous offences, make him vnto thee of a most kinde father a se­uere Iudge: Or else thou shalt be cut off .i. from ye Oliue tree of the Church and Gods people.

Ver. 23. And they also .i. the Iewes are cut from the O­liue by vnbeliefe shall be graffed, in the Church of Christ: for God is able to graft them in againe, Obiect. and to inlarge his Church by their addition.

For if thou, that hadst beene a Gentile in times past, was cut out. Ver. 24. Viz. as a graft out of the Oliue tree wilde by nature .i. out of the wilde and vndressed Oliue, and wast graft into a right Oliue, a garden and trimmed Oliue, frō whose nature in respect of especiall promises made to them, and in regard of their holy Auncestors, thy nature much differed, how much more shall they which are by nature .i. haue great affinitie with the Patriarches, and who in respect of their beginning did sometime (by reason of the promises) belong to Gods people: bee [Page 77] grafted in .i. againe by faith: in their owne Oliue .i. the Church of GOD wherein the holy Patriarches the Iewes fathers and Auncestors haue the first partes and places.

Beholde Gods bountifulnesse and Gods seueritie.

Ques. Is not God changeable in his promises & coue­nant seeing that he cast of the Iewes whom formerly hee chose and loued?

Ans. No, for first he speaketh of the nation in gene­rall, which were his people onely by outward profession, and not by secret election.

Secondly they were grafted in the Church, but ne­uer predestinate to life eternall, for then they could not haue falne away:2 Tim. 2.19. Eor the Election of God is a firme foun­dation and all the gates and powers of hell cannot shake it, much lesse preuaile against it.

Towards thee bountifulnesse,Ver. 22. if thou continue in his bountie.

Ques. Seeing that continuance and perseuerance in grace and faith seemeth to consist in our owne power and will, which is weake and changeable, cannot the elect and regenerate loose faith and so wholy fall away from God?

Ans. No, for first, constancy and perseuerance doth not consist in our owne power and will, but it is an effect of Gods election, & an especiall marke of a man regenerate. 1. Iohn 2.22.

Secondly by this manner of speaking, the holy Ghost intendeth to correct pride and presumption in men, and to stirre them vp to a godly indeauor, to maintaine and cherish their faith and to be workers and instruments of their owne saluation by vsing all the good meanes that God hath sanctified for that purpose.

Thirdly faith, albeit the flame and outward effects of it, may be quenched for a time, yet ye fire was neuer put out, [Page 78] but at the least blast of Gods word and spirit it is kindled againe, and breaketh forth into a bright flame. Lastly, that regeneration and the gift of faith is neuer wholy lost, it is most cleare and manifest by many testimonies of scripture, God putteth his feare into their hearts that they can neuer depart from him.

Luk. 8. v. 15They haue the seed of grace and of faith remayning in them, and they alwaies keepe it.

Ioh 4.14 Luk. 22.32 Ioh. 14.15 The grace of God, in them is a Well of water springing vp into euerlasting life, Christ is alwaies a mediator for them, and praieth for them effectually; the comforter doth abide with them for euer, God doth neuer cast them off and they shall neuer perish. Ioh. 6. and 10.

They if they abide not still in vnbeliefe shalbe grafted in.

Q. How can predestination bee eternall and certaine, seeing that it dependeth vpon mans beleefe or vnbe­leefe?

An. Our beliefe or vnbeliefe dependeth vpon pre­destination, for they that are elected to eternall life, be­leeue. Act. 13.48. and they that are eternall refused, cannot beleeue nor obey the Gospell. Ioh. 8. and there­fore predestination dependeth not on it, for the second causes hang on the first, that is the decree of God and not the first on the second.

Secondly our engrafting into the Church dependeth not vpon our owne power and free-will, but onely vpon the power of God and his mercy.

Thirdly, wee must distinguish of the times. The Iewes that liue in one time or age, may bee generally reiected, but not so in another, (especially) when their fulnesse shall (as wee daily expect and pray for) come into the Church, and they bee by faith Abahams chil­dren.

Fourthly, the Apostle speaketh not of euery perti­cular but of the people and nation in generall. Lastly, their duetie is shewed vs that they ought not to please themselues in their ignorance and vnbeleife, but [Page 79] to desire to come to true vnderstanding and faith.

V. 22. Behold the bountifulnesse and seuerity of God.

The whole world is but a Theater of Gods mercie and iudgements,Doct. for whatsoeuer, is done in it, hee doth it either as the efficient cause, if it bee good, and so farre forth as it is good: or, if it be euill, he effectually permit­eth it,Psal. 97. v. 1 2 3, 4. and most wisely, and to good ends, ordereth and gouerneth it, and that alwaies without any fault of his, as here we haue an instance in the Iewes reiection, & in the election of the Gentiles. Psal. 115.

The reason herof is, first because God is almighty, and therefore nothing is or can bee done in the world, but by his decree and knowledge, effectual working, or (at least) by his effectual permissiō: secondly God sitteth not idle in heauen, (as Epicures & others vainly imagin) but alwaies worketh & doth care for and order the things of men, preparing and propounding rewards to the God­ly, and reseruing and prouiding punishments for the wicked. Gen. 6.5.6. Gen. 22.1. Deut. 8.2. & 13.3. Isa. 4,

Vse. Let vs attribute and ascribe nothing to chance or fortune, but ascribe all to Gods holy prouidence, who decreeth and fore-seeth, gouerneth ordereth and direct­eth all things, euen the least and most vile things, and that, in a most excellent maner, & to most excellent ends, and if nature nihil facit frustra, then the God of nature, who is wisdome it selfe doth nothing but to excellent purpose.

Towards them which haue fallen, seuerity.

We by other mens sinnes and falls must bee humbled and stand in feare,Doctr. least by our vnbeliefe and other sinnes that flow from it, wee draw Gods anger and iudgments vpon vs. We haue infinit spectacles hereof in scripture, as against the old world, yt in the daies of Noah was drow­ned: against the Sodomits yt were destroied with fire and brimston from heauen: of many thousand Israelits yt peri­shed & were destroied in the wildernes, for murmuring [Page 80] for rebellion,1 Cor. 10 v 6 Rom. 15. v. 4 for fornication, for idollatry, and for temp­ting of God. Iud. Epist. v. 7. of the Iewes exiled their owne country and led once and againe into captiuity, and many other both generall and particular iudge­ments, recorded in scripture, both in the old testament and also in the new, yea all ages and our owne expe­rience yeelde vs store and variety of examples.

The reason hereof is, because God is mercifull vnto vs, and would not haue vs perish,2 Pet. 3.9 but to come to the know­ledge of the truth and to repentance and so to saluation. Secondly. God is iust and hateth sinnes alike in all, and if we will not take warning by others, God will censure and punish vs sharpely.

Vse 1. Let vs pitty and commiserate their wofull con­dition that haue prouoked Gods indignation against them, let vs commend them to God in our praiers, and do out vttermost endeuour to recouer them.

Vse 2. Let vs marke and meditate vpon Gods seuerity against the Hungarians and the Greekes and other pla­ces of Europe, that haue beene captiuated and inthralled to the Godlesse and barbarous Turkes, together with Asia and Affrica.

Let vs also consider the great and long Apostacy of Spaine, Italy and other countries in the West part of the world, from Christ to the Romish Antichrist, and with­all behold Gods incomparable mercies so long and so strangely continued, vnto vs and our nation.

Let vs acknowledge our owne vnworthinesse, and be alwaies thankefull vnto God, for so great mercies, and beware least we contemne the ritches of his goodnesse and patience, that leadeth and prouoketh vs to repen­tance, and take heed yt, that be not found in vs which we taxe and condemne in others, least God receiue them a­gaine into fauor, and withall disclaime and cast vs off.

But towards thee bountifulnesse.

Doct.Here wee may obserue Gods gentlenesse and facility towards his children, hee is a most indulgent father to them; most sensitiue of their miseries, and one that is [Page 81] most ready and willing to helpe them (that truly serue him) in all their needs and extreamities And whereas he being debter to no man, might neglect, yea reiect all, yet he amongst many chooseth some (albeit of them­selues altogether vnworthy and strangers from God and his couenant) who may both temporally and eternally, enioy his goodnesse, and alwayes praise and magnifie him for it.

The particulars hereof appeare towards the elect, and euidence them-selues especially in Gods constant loue towards them through Christ,Rom. 8. v. 30. in their effectuall calling, in their iustification, and sanctification, in disposing and directing all things,Psalm. 73.1, yea euen their afflictions, Rom. 8.28. yea their very sinnes to their good,Isa. 57. v. 1.2. and by aduancing them in the time appointed to euerlasting saluation and happinesse.

1. Vse. Seeing that God is so good and bountifull to his elect, we that serue so good a Lord and maister, must be ashamed to offend him, and wee must thinke it an in­tollerable matter to requite his goodnesse with euill. And when God shall either in his iustice correct vs for our offences, or else chastice vs (thereby to produce and worke some greater good) wee must neuer repine and grudge against him; for he in wisdome and mercy ma­nageth all things for our good and saluation, Hebr, 12.7. and 10. Rom. 8.28.

2. Wee must acknowledge that wee receiue all good things from God alone, wee must admire and esteeme them, and repose our whole trust and affiance in God for his goodnesse and bountie, and seeke and sue vnto him by prayer and supplications in all our distresses and di­stractions; then will he delight to doe vs good, and be a present succour and shelter vnto vs in time of neede. Psal. 46. v. 1. Hebr. 4. v. 16.

3. Vse. Lastly, wee must day and night, publikely and priuately, sound and set forth his mercies toward vs, that whereas he might haue made vs and left vs to be vnbe­leeuing Iewes, or blinded and idolatrous Papists or [Page 82] ignorant Atheists, or prophane and godlesse Painims, hee hath vouchsafed vs the glorious light of his sauing truth, and hath taught vs both outwardly and inwardly how to walke before him and so to attaine vnto euerlas­ting rest and blessednesse.

If thou shalt continue in his bountifulnesse.

Doctr.It sufficeth not once to haue intertained the grace & Gospell of God, to haue made a gay and goodly profes­sion of it, and to haue gotten credit and esteeme by it, ex­cept with a perpetuall tenour we follow our vocation,Heb. 3.14. except we keepe a setled and continued course in godly­nesse and hold fast the beginning of our substance whereby we are vpholden vnto the end,Luke 9.2. hauing set our hand to the plowgh, we must not once looke backe, we must perseuer vnto the end,Math. 24.13. if we will be saued: If wee would winne and weare the Crowne of righteousnesse, wee must with blessed Paul fight a good fight, 2 Tim. 4.7.8. finish our cou [...]se, and keepe the faith.

The reasons hereof, are (especially) these; first God is a bountifull Lord and vnchangeably good, therefore wee must serue him willingly and with all our heartes, and that for euer if we would be rewarded by him. Second­ly except we persist and abide in Gods loue, truth and seruice, all our former labour is but lost, al our righte­ousnesse shall be forgotten;Ezech. 18.24. if we fall and part away from God, we are the instruments of our owne destruction, & shall die and be damned in our sins.

Vse. 1. Seeing that many that only in shew and ne­uer in good earnest imbraced Gods goodnes and his promises, are iustly depriued of them, let vs while wee haue time and meanes, labour & contend to go forward in piety and religion to the end, and to make our electi­on sure (vnto vs) by good workes. 2. Pet. 1.10.

Vse. 3. Here are iustly reproued those yt serue GOD only by star [...]s and brunts, by accompt of daies, yeares and moneths, and so are soone whot and soone cold, soone ripe, soone rotten, their zeale and religion vanisheth away like a cloude or a morning dew. Hosea. 6. V. 4.

[Page 83] Vs. 3. We must not in this heauenly course consult with flesh and bloud,Gal. 1 V. 16. nor bring a fleshly mind to religion, nor any worldly respect & sinister aimes of procuring honour, authority, credit, riches, praise: for when we speed of our desire, then our religion determineth and endeth, and when our ends faile, then our godlinesse goeth away with them, or if the sincerity of the gospell shall con­demne and crosse vs in our vices and vanities, profits and pleasures, then we bid adewe to religion, and will desire it to depart out of our coasts as the Garge [...]its did our Sauiour. Wherefore we must alwaies be aduised by Gods word, we must loue it and delight in it and with all our soules, serue the Lord of heauen: then shall we con­tinue in Gods goodnesse and neuer be confounded.

Or else thou shalt be cut of .i. because thou art vnthanke­full, or but an Hipocrite, God will take his kingdome and Gospel from thee,Doctr. or he wil leaue thee to thy selfe, or giue thee ouer to Sathan, for to be seduced & hardned by him.

It is expedient and necessary for the ministers and preachers of the word sometimes, (especially) in time of a generall security, and corruption of maners when they see and espy there people and hearers to grow secure and proud,Esa. 58. Heb. 6.10. 1. Cor. 10.11.12. to contemne other, and to rest onely in titles shewes & outward appearances to vse argumen [...]ts, of ter­rour and to denounce the heauy iudgements of God that hang ouer their heads, Heb. 6.10. 1. Cor. 10.11. 2, Tim Iud. 23.

The first reason hereof is, because without this rough dealing, the conceited Hipocrite, the glosing Gospeller, and the drowsie professour cannot possibly be throughly couninced, much lesse awaked and conuerted.

Secondly there is often in the best Christians a kind of be-nummednesse, a kind of worldly drowsinesse, and a kind of spirituall pride and conceitednesse, therefore for the finding out & redresse of these infirmities and faults they haue need of daily and sound admonition,Apoc. 3 17. and the more that faith is corrupted and mens manners infected, the more need to plye them with admonitions.

[Page 84]1. Vse. Let vs labour and endeuour to serue God in singlenesse of heart, and in godly sinceritie, without any by respects or sinister aimes; for then shall we cleare our selues from hipocrisie, and in the time of distresse and in the agonie of death, finde and feele euerlasting and vn­speakable comfort.

2. Vse. It behoueth vs, if we would approue the sound­nesse of our conscience, or bee raised from the sleepe and slumber of negligence and securitie, and bee kept from Apostacie, and the custome and sway of sinne, to endure and admit of wholsome reprehensions and sharpe admo­nitions. If we do so, they will bee but warnings vnto vs, nay, purgations to purge vs of many superfluous humors, of pride; false opinions, and euill conuersation, yea and a notable restoratiue to recouer vs, and a preseruatiue to keepe vs in good plight, being once cured & recouered.

They shall be grafted in.

Wee learne here not to deny all hope of pardon, euen to men that fall and offend most greeuously, but to put them in some hope of obtaining mercy,Acts. 8. v. 22. Dan. 4 24. Ephes. 2. so long as they do not by manifest signes declare themselues to be alto­gether desperate and incorrigible. Amos. 5. But it must bee so propounded, that still their sinne may bee beaten downe, their securitie remoued, and their minde (in sense of their damnable downefall, into which they are cast) more stirred vp to seeke the face and fauour of God.

Reasons. For, first Gods power is infinite, and his mer­cies bottomlesse, & therfore he can & may conuert them. Secondly, if there be no hope and comfort left of mercie and forgiuenesse, men will neuer seeke to bee reconciled vnto God, by true repentance, but either will bee swal­lowed vp of despaire, or else persist and proceed on in their obstinacie and blindnesse.

Vse. This meeteth with the error of the Donatists and Nouatians, who did denie repentance, and receiuing in againe into the fellowship of the Church to those that shrunke from the profession of faith in time of persecu­tion, or fell into manifest offences after Baptisme, where­as [Page 85] the word of God is flatly against it in many places,Ier. 3.1. Iohn. and in many particulers, 2. Cor. 2. v. 6 7.8. Math. 18.22.

2. Vse. Let no man (albeit he haue beene neuer so great a sinner, or neuer so often fallen and offended) despaire of Gods mercy, but onely acknowledge and bewaile his sinnes before God, labour and resolue to forsake his sinnes, and to leade a new life, and wholy and perfectly relie himselfe vpon Gods mercies in Christ, and by the hand of faith apply them continually to his soule, and then though his sinnes were as crimson, Isay. 1. v. 18. they shall he as white as snowe: though they were as redde as Scarlet they shall be as wooll, for Christ his satisfaction is of infinite vali­ditie and vertue: our sinnes finite, but his mercies are infinite.

For God is able to graft them in againe.

Seeing that God is omnipotent, and that nothing is impossible vnto him, of those things which hee will, that his power doth in nothing more shine out, then in the iustification and sauing of men:Doctr. we must not rashly de­spaire of a mans conuersion, nor deny pardon to those that haue falne, or debarre them of the meanes of sal [...] ­uation, for the very Iewes shall bee grafted in againe, when they shall returne vnto the Lord,2. Cori. 3.1 [...]. Luke 21.24. and when by faith they shall embrace the Messias.

1. Reason. For God often-times conuerteth the most wicked,Luk. 23. v. 30. and of whom (in mans iudgement) there is none or the least hope. Examples hereof we haue in Manasses, the Niniuites,Apoc. 3.9. Mary Magdaline, Paul, and the Theefe vp­on the crosse, and of those of the Synagogue of Sathan in Saint Iohns time▪ Secondly, we shall hereby much de­tract and derogate from Gods greatnesse and goodnesse, and foster an vncharitable opinion of others, whereas charitie must hope and beleeue all things.1. Cor. 13. Thirdly, Gods power is not idle and included in heauen, but actiue, ef­fectuall and shewing his effects in all places, and in all persons.

1. Vse. Let vs by this doctrine be humbled and giue the glory vnto God; for that recouery and conuersion com­meth [Page 86] from his power and mercy onely, and other-wise man in matters of his saluation, wanting faith, can doe no more then a boughe or branche broken off can grow greene before that it bee by the Gardiners or Planters hand grafted into the Tree.

2. Vse. Let vs in all dangers, all outward difficulties and impossibilities, and in the performance of all Gods pro­mises build vpon his powre and omnipotencie, (viz. so farre forth as it standeth with his reuealed will) and this will notably stay and support our faith in all temptations and triall. Iob. 19.25.26. Math. 22.29. Rom. 4. v. 20. Dan. 3.17.

Verse. 24.How much more shall they that are by nature be grafted in their owne Oliue tree.

Doctr.We must hope well of their conuersion and saluation, that yet remaine in the couenant of God, and bee of the blessed seed, albeit they for the times past, and the present instant (generally) remaine in vnbeliefe and contempt of Christ.Psal. 8.9. v. 33 & 34.

The first reason hereof is, because Gods couenant with his elect is perpetuall, vnchangeable, and extendeth it [...]elfe to a thousand generations, and therefore must needs be accomplished in them. Psal. 103.17. & 18. The second reason is drawne frō the power & practise of God, in effecting and bringing to passe greater and more vnlikely things, such as was the conuersiō of the Gentiles who neuer were Gods peculiar people & nation, nor the sonnes of Abrahā (before their conuersion to Christ) nor chosen of God, as the Iewes were: & therfore much more can he & will (in his good time) bring home the erring and wandring Iewes, his owne peculiar people.

Vse. Let vs by due contemplation & pondering of the workes of Gods omnipotencie in greater matters, not doubt of it in ye performance of lesser matters. As for exā ­ple, can & could God make all ye world of nothing? could he destroy Senacheribs army in one night by one Angel, & cannot he in time when he pleaseth, confound & destroy Romish Babell, by his Almighty power, and by such an [Page 87] infinit hoast of his creatures which he hath alwaies ready at command?

The first part of diuision of the Chapt. v. 25. ad. 33.

For I would not Bretheren that yee should be ignorant of this secret (least yee should be wise in your selues) that partly obstinacie i [...] [...]ome to Israell,25. verse. vntill the fulnesse of the Gen­tiles be come in.

And so shall all Israel be saued, as it is written, the deliuerer shall come out of S [...]ion,26. verse. and shall turne away (defections) or vngodlinesse from Iacob.

And this is my couenant to them,27. verse. when I shall take away their sinnes.

I would not haue you ignorant of this mystery: Paraph. id est, of this secret and hidden thing; which hetherto hath beene vncredible to the Iewes, I will bring it now into your remembrance: least you should be wise in your selues. i. least you be wise in your owne eyes, and so prowd and arro­gant, that partly: in respect of some persons, and for a time and in a sort, but not altogether: obstinacy, i. hardnesse of heart and vnbeleefe: is come to Israell, to the Iewes or people of Israell, vntill the fulnesse of the Gentiles bee come in. i. as it were the whole body of the Gentiles. So that no nation shall be left out, and though they bee neuer so barbarous, as they of America, amongst whom it is to be thought, that some of the Apostles Disciples preached or (at the least) that the same & sound of the Gospell might easily be brought to them from other famous and popu­lous places, or else if so bee that not so much as the fame and sound of the holy Gospell hath come vnto these bar­barous people & countries, yet it is agreeable to Christs generall promise. Math. 24.14. that they shall in successi­on of time heare of it and haue it, especially when other parts of the world haue declared themselues vnthankfull for it and vnworthy of it (as all the Easterne parts haue done, and therefore haue iustly lost the Gospell) which shall not successiuely, and (at least for a time) embrace [Page 88] the Gospell, shall enter into the Church and bee conuer­ted. And so when the fullnesse of the Gentiles and Iewes are entred into the church, [...]ll Israell. i. all the Elect, or the whole body of the people of Israel then liuing or the fulnesse of them, as verse 12. that is the greatest part of them, shalbe saued. i. by the preaching of the Gospell be effectually called, and iustified by faith in Christ. The deliuerer shall come out of Sion, 2 Corint. 3. v. 16. the Redeemer and Mes­sias shall open the eyes of their vnderstanding, and take away from them the vaile of Moses, and shal turne away vngodlinesse from Iacob. i. shall forgiue pardon, and iusti­fie by faith the posterity of Iacob.

Ver. 27 This is my couenant to them. i. this shalbe my coue­nant, I will receiue them againe into my couenant, from which before through vnbeleife they had fallen, when I shall take away their sinnes. i. I shall pardon them all their sinnes for Christ his sake, and adopt them to be my sonnes, and so they shall testifie their thankefulnesse to the Sonne of God, by confession of his name and by true Godlinesse.

Verse 25. Q. When is likely to be the time of the Iewes conuer­sion, before ye sacking & burning of Rome or afterward?

A. In all probability it is like to follow the burning and destruction of Rome, for then the stumbling blocks yt the Papists offer them, by their imagery, inuocation of Saints, Latine seruice, and abhominable and most sense­lesse transubstantiation, shalbe remoued & taken away.

Secondly (as it apeareth in the 18. and 20. cap. of Iohns Apocalips, (there shalbe some reasonable distance of time betweene the burning of Rome and the end of the worlde, in which it is most consonant to truth that the Iewes shalbe called, for their conuersion in the last generall signe & fore-runner of Christs second com­ming so far forth as the scripture reuealeth vnto vs.

2. Q. Whether shall the Iewes recouer the holy land a­gaine or not, and be all conuerted and dwell their; seeing that it is said their deliuerer shall come out of Sion; or must wee thinke rather they shalbe conuerted in the [Page 89] Countries in which they dwell, and into which they are dispersed or shall then be found inhabiting?

Ans. They are likely neuer to recouer it, for they haue no such promise, neither haue they any possiblity of meanes to compasse it. Secondly Christes comming vn­to them shall not be visible but spirituall, not from the Earthly Sion, which long sithence hath bene made deso­late, but from his spirituall Sion of his Catholike Church.

Lastly it is most probable and likely that they shal bee conuerted in those countries into which they are disper­sed, and in which they haue their residence.

For first we haue some smal beginnings (here & there) of it. Secondly they shall better and sooner by by their zeale and example reuiue the faith of ye Gentiles beeing mixed and conuersant with them, and liuing a­mongst them there, then if they should dwel and be con­tained all in one country.

What is meant by the fulnesse of the Gentiles?Vers. 25. What that the whole world shall at one time euer bee inlight­ned and conuerted, or that onely th [...]se countries, that formerly either had not the Gospell at all, or (at least) in very small measure shall be called?

Ans. It cannot be vnderstood of an vniuersall inlight­ning of the whole world at the time of the Iewes con­uersion:Act. 1.8. Colos. 1.6. Rom. 10.18. For in the Apostles times the Gospell was ge­nerally preached vnto all the knowne and inhabited na­tions of the world. Colos. 1.23.

But that the Gospell should now the second time bee divulged and published ouer the whole world, wee haue neither reason, Scripture, nor commission, for it. For first Apostolicall callings and gifts (which are necessary for so great a worke) are many hundred yeares sithence ceased. Secondly at Christs comming there shall bee al­most no faith that is sound Doctrine and zeale left vp­pon the earth,Luk. 18. v▪ 8. and yet Christs comming will follow soone after the calling of the Iewes. Thirdly it may be, that the Gospell may bee reulued in many kingdomes [Page 90] and countries where it was planted long before, and es­pecially in and nearer the places wherein the Iewes haue and shall haue there residence and habitation at there generall calling, but it shall not be generall, much lesse vniuersall. They therefore that looke for an vniuersall preaching, many sooner behold Christ comming in the clouds, then haue their expectation satisfied.

Que [...]. Is the fulnesse of the Gentiles yet come in?

Ans. Albeit diuers thinke so, and especially because they see no conuersion of any other countries of late times, nor any certaine probability of it: yet it is much to be hoped for, and not without rashnesse to be presu­med,Kecker [...]nan, sist. theol. page 104.105.106. that the Gospell remaineth in his season to be prea­ched to America, seeing that it is the greatest part of the world, and neuer in times past had nor heard of it, and seeing that the very Iesuits that are sent thither make (perhaps) some enterance and passage, for more sincere peaching and doctrine to be published and spread there, by such sund protestants, whether English, Dutch or o­thers, that vse to trauell thither and backe againe with most prosperous nauigations. Likwise it is to be thought that the Gospell shalbe preached to the East Indies (if they neuer heard of it before,) or else at least reuiued as it hath beene in diuers other countries and kingdomes sucessiuely. For (albeit) some of the auncient haue both reported & recorded that S. Thomas and S. Bartholome [...] the Apostles preached there; yet no monument, signes and remembrances of it are now there extant or remayning.

What is ment by all Israel.

Whether the whole body of ye Iewes (as many take it) or ye Catholick Church to be gathered of Iewes & Gentiles

Ans. Specially and properly here is ment the whole bo­dy of the Iewes in generall, and of whom the Apostle directly speaketh, but not euery seuerall and singular person of them.

Secondly it is opposed to a remnant or part, therefore it must needs signifie the greatest number or a very great multitude.

[Page 91] Qu [...]. The deliuerer shall come to Sion (as in the Hebrew context) or The deliuerer shall come out of Sion or from Sion, as Paul applieth it) how can or may these two scriptures be reconciled?

Ans. We must distinguish of the times vnto which the Prophet Isaiah and the Apostle Paul had respect, and so we shall more easily cleare the difference:Iunius in Paral­le [...]is. Isaiah pointeth at the very moment of the time that was then to come, but Paul passing from Christ his comming vnto other things that follow it, saith, he shall come from Sion .i. out of his Church for the good and comfort of it. So that Paul doth not take vpon him the office of an interpreter, but applieth it to his time, and who can dislike or gain­say it?

Ques. Shall this comming be corporall or spirituall.

Ans. It cannot now be corporall, for the heauens must containe him vntill the daies of iudgment,Acts. 3.2 [...]. ergo it must needs be spirituall, by the Preaching of the Gospell.

Obi. But saluation came not to the Iewes at the first comming of Christ therefore he must needs come to con­ue [...]t them at his second comming, visibly?

Ans. Saluation came by his first comming, but not al­together at one time and in one age, but in diuers suc­cessions of times and ages, for he must saue his people to the worlds end.

I would not haue you ignorant of this mistery.

Mistery here importeth a thing vnknowne vnto men or not sufficiently vnderstood of them.

The Doctrine then is this,Doctr. Math. 16.17. that flesh and bloud cannot vnderstand Gods counsailes (as appeareth in the Iewes that thought that because they were borne of Abrahams seede, therefore the blessing and benefits of the Messias did belong to them alone) neither can Carnall wisdome or mens naturall conceipt,Math. 11.25. know and vnderstand God and heauenly things. 1. Cor. 2.14.

The reason hereof is because the knowledge and ap­prehension hereof is supernaturall, and proceedeth onely from the illumination of the holy spirit which is often [Page 92] called by Saint Paul [...] the Reuelation of the misterie. Rom: 16.25. Ephes. 3 V. 3.9.

Vse. 1. The vse hereof is first to teach vs (if we would finde out and know diuine misteries) to deny our selues and our owne naturall wisdome, and submit and subiect our selues and senses to bee taught and instructed by the word and spirit of God, for God hideth the knowledge of his secrets from the wise and prudent of the world, and re­uealeth them to Babes, and so it is his good pleasure. Math: 11.25.

Vse. 2. Wee must vse all holy meanes, as dilligent search, attention, comparing place with place, con­sulting the Originall, conference with our Pastors and godly brethren, hearing and reading, earnest and continuall prayer. For then if the matter directly con­cerne our saluation, God will reueale it vnto vs, or if it be not so necessary, if God reueale it not [...] wee must bee content, and reuerence that wee know not, and rest vntill GOD giue farther knowledge and vnderstan­ding.

That you should not be wise in your owne conceipt.

Doctr.The cause of stubbornesse and obstinacie which bree­deth and begetteth absurd and rebellious opinions in vs, is, that men will bee wise of them-selues, and will not seeke to vnderstand and know heauenly miste­ries by dilligent search and examination of the Scrip­tures, and by reuelation of Gods spirit, which is the on­ly meane to vnderstand them, but they either wholy neglect them,Iohn. 3.4. or else measure them by their sense and imagination which is shallow and will deceiue them. Isai. [...].21. 1 Cor. 2.14.

The reason hereof is, because they want GODS spirit and humilitie to guide and direct them, without which all other meanes are vaine and with­out force.Psal. 25.9.

Vse. 1. The first vse hereof, serueth to condemne the badnes and madnes of many not only Papists, but others [Page 93] in many countries, who because they wil not be thought to erre, will stiffly maintaine grosse, false and absurd opinions, as wee haue many Lutherans, Schismatikes; Sectaries, temporising flatterers for instances.

1. Vse. Let vs not measure this misterie of the Iewes conuersion by sence and reason, but by faith, and seeing it is a misterie yet that it is (in respect of the forme and manner of their conuersion) not common or ordinary; let vs not bee curious to diue and discend farther into particulars then Gods word, or (at least) very proba­ble arguments, not contrarying the same wil warrant, but rest in expectation vntill the time come, and in the in­terim helpe them by our praiers, and further them by our zealous and holy example.

Obstinacie is partly come to Israell, that is, it is not vniuersall nor perpetuall: and so all Israell shal be saued.

SEeing that the Iewes are not altogether reiected, but that there is alwaies a remnant remayning, as ap­peareth by the first member, and thè experience of all a­ges iustifieth: & especially seeing yt al Israel .i. the grea­test part and number of that nation, are to be called and conuerted, we must not rashly either contemne, much lesse condemne the Iewes,Doctr. nor expell them out of our Coastes and countries, but hope well of them, pray for them, and labour to win them by our holy zeale and Christian example.

The first reason hereof is, there are some of them called and conuerted in all ages, which are a preludium and fore-runner of the conuersion of the rest.

Secondly they are the faithfull keepers and preseruers of the old Testament. Rom: 9.4. Rom: 3. V. 2.

Thirdly they in respect of the time past: Viz: since Christ his ascention vntill this day, doe (in a sort) con­firme the Christian faith, seeing that the iudgement of God is come vpon many of them to the full,1. Thes. 2.15.16. & that they suffer those things which the Prophets threatned to the enemies of the Messias.

[Page 94]Fourthly, amongest vs Christians scarce one of a hundred answereth his holy profession, and therefore we haue lit­tle reason to insult ouer the Iewes, that are so faulty our selues.

Lastly, the great plenty and exceeding number of them: for in Asia and Affrica (to omit diuers places of Europe) there are infinite numbers of them, who when they shalbe conuerted, shall both in respect of them­selues and vs Gentiles be the reuiuing and the resurrec­tion of the world, must keepe vs from rash censuring of them.

Vse. Christian Princes and Potentates, must take order that the Iewes amongest them, may by degrees bee taught true religion, yea they should force them to heare the Gospell, and not leaue the miserable soules in perpetuall darknesse, that they euery day grow worse, and more wilfull in their errour.

Secondly they must by seuerity of lawes and punish­ment curbe and moderate their vnmeasurable vsuries, whereby they much damnifie and impouerish Christian men.

Vse 2. Let the people amongst whom these Iewes liue and dwell, beware least by their pride and cruelty they doe not hinder their conuersion, for were it not for this, doubtlesly in many places many more Iewes then now are, would be moued and drawne to embrace the Gospell.

As it is written.

Doct. Isay 9. ve. 6. & 7.All the great and memorable workes of God, such as is the incarnation of Christ, his life, Doctrine, miracles, death, the reiection of the Iewes, the calling of the Gen­tiles, the rising reuealing and fall of Antichrist, the generall persecution and state of the last times, the resur­rection of the body, the last iudgment, are fore-told of God in holy scripture. Ezek. 11.37. Rom. 9. Rom. 15.4. Ioh. 20.31. Apoc. 9. and 17.18.

[Page 95]The reason hereof is, because they are very necessary for the confirmation of our faith, & direction of our liues, and therfore God would not haue vs in any wise igno­rant of them, much lesse to doubt of the truth of them.

Secondly, God would hereby shew and declare the sufficiency of the scriptures, and so (consequently) warne and lesson vs that we giue no credit to bee ruled by any fained reuelation or humaine traditions in matter of sal­uation, but only consult and search the scriptures, which containe a plaine, perfect and all sufficient doctrine, both for faith manners and for sauing of our soules.

Vse 1. The first vse is to condemne, partly, the supine and merueilous negligence, and extreame slouthfulnesse of them that know not such necessary and fundamentall points, and principall conclusions so euidently and so of­tentimes spoken of, and vrged in the sacred scriptures, or the vnexcusable vnbeleife and Atheisme of those that will not beleeue such plaine places and proofes of Gods word, but say or (at least) thinke that the scriptures are vntrue, the fables or the politicke inuentions of men to keepe and r [...]taine men in some feare and awe. These are the Marchiuillians (matchlesse in euil) of our times.

Vse. 2. We must neuer stagger [...], or doubt of them, neither at any time cal the certainty and accomplishment thereof in question,2 Tim. 3.16.17. Ioh. 20.31 but rest in them, and repaire, streng­then and quicken our faith by them, for to this end were they giuen.

As it is written.

Ministers and preachers must le [...]rne hence,Doctr. not to broach and vtter their owne conceits, or the inuentions of men,Ier. 23.2 [...] but to speake and preach the holy and wholsome word of God only. Luk 4.11.20. Isa. 8.20. Act. 26.22.

Reasons hereof are, first God so requireth and com­mandeth. Ioh. 4. Isa. 8.20. Ier. 2.

Secondly the word of God is for all and in all points that concernes faith and good life, of and in it selfe per­fectly sufficient 2. Tim. 3.16. and 17. so that it neither admitteth addition nor detraction.

[Page 96]Thirdly we haue for our light and direction the con­tinuall practise of all the Prophets and men of God in the olde Testament:Luk. 24 27. Acts. 26.22. and of Christ, the Apostles and Euan­gelists in the new.

Fourthly, the often and vnsauorie and vnfruitfull blending and addition of humaine vanities, doth but darken and diminish the power, puritie and efficacie of Gods word.2. Cor. 2.16.

Vse 1. Hereby are condemned first the Papists, that will not admitte and allow the Scripture to bee the sole and all sufficient rule and touch-stone of Doctrine and faith, but adde and equall to it their decretalls, tra­ditions &c.

Luke. 8.18.Secondly, the hearers must take heed how and what they heare, they must try the spirits and doctrines by the touch-stone of Gods word & spirit, and then retaine the good,1. Thess. 5.21. and if ought be dissonant from the sacred scripture they must refuse and reiect it.

The Deliuerer shall come out of Sion: Christ the Redeemer.

Doct [...].Seeing that the Iewes, and so all we Gentiles haue need off and haue giuen vnto vs of God, not onely for our temporall, but especially for our eternall deliuerance and saluation, a Deliuerer and a Redeemer, we see what wretched and miserable sinners we are by nature,Titus. 3. v. 3. chil­dren of wrath, lost sheepe. Math. 15.24. Vassals, cap­tiues and slaues vnder sinne and Sathan. Luke 4. V. 18. Lying and liuing in the shadow and point of death. Ephes. 2.2. and for feare of the second or eternall death, al our life subiect to bondage. Hebr. 2.15.

The reason hereof is, for that all men without this Deliuerer and Redeemer (to omit their temporall mise­ries and malladies) are in farre worser estate then any brute beast or vgly toad, or any other vilde creature, for when it dieth, his life and woe endeth together with it: but the death of man without a Redeemer, and without faith in him, is but the beginning of vncessant and euer­lasting terror and torment.

[Page 97] Vse. Let vs labour to feele and finde our selues to bee thus wretched and miserable, and acknowledge that without Christ his suffering and obedience we euerlast­ingly perish,Daniel 9.6 1 Tim. 1. v. 15 we must from a touched heart acknowledge that shame and confusion belongeth vnto vs, that of sin­ners we are the greatest, and therefore wee must intreate the Lord to be merciful vnto vs, & to receiue vs into his grace and fauour. And therefore it standeth vs in hand carefully to labour and endeauour that Sathan doe not fore-stall, bewitch and possesse our hearts with his de­ceites and illusions,Isay 55. v. 2 and so take all sense of our miseries from vs wherein they must needes pine and perish that seeke any other by-waies or shifting euasions.

Vse 2. Wee must in time seeke vnto Christ onely for helpe, for pardon of sinnes and for saluation, he hath e­ternall life in himselfe, and is author of eternall saluation, to all that obey him, and for our better direction herein, we must craue and desire the instructions,Ca [...]. [...]. v. 1.2 aduise and as­sistance, not only of our pastors and ministers, but also of our Christian and beloued friends and acquaintance.

And shall turne away (desections) and vngodli­nesse from Iacob.

It is the proper office of Christ Iesus to reconcile the reuolting Iewes, and by consequence all the elect in the world to God his Father. 1 Ioh. 2.1. and 2. R [...]m. Ioh. 1.29,Rom. 4. v. 25 Act. 4.12. The forme and manner is by his death and passion to make payment and satisfaction to Gods iustice for their sinnes. 1 Ioh. 1.7. 1. Pet. 1.18.

Secondly by not imputing sinne vnto his elect,Psa. 32.1 Phil. 3.9 and by imputing his owne righteousnesse vnto them, 2. Cor. 5. ver. 21. Thirdly by abating and weakning the multi­tude and might of sin in them by the power of his word and efficacy of his spirit. Rom. 6. ver. 3 4.5.6.

Lastly by quite abolishing and remouing them at the houre of death and at the day of iudgment. Apoc. 14.13. Hebr. 9. ver. 28. Act. 3.19.

The reason hereof as,Gen. 2 [...]. ve. 1 [...] he is the blessed seed in whom all nations are blessed, & he is the roote and foundation on [Page 98] which all Gods promises depend,2 Cor. 1. v. 20 and in whom they are, yea, and Amen. Finally God hath sanctified, sent and sea­led him alone to be Sauiour & Mediator of the world.Ioh. 5, 8 [...]. Apoc▪ 19▪ v. 14 Heb. v. 14

Vse 1. Therefore we must seeke for saluation in none els but in Christ & in his only merits, righteousnes & suffe­rings, for he alone trod downe the wine-presse of Gods wrath, and by his death and obedience made satisfaction to his diuine iustice.

And this is my couenant to them.

Doctr.Gods couenant with his people is certaine, sure, perpe­tual and alwaies kept on Gods part,Psal. 89, v. 33.34 Act. 3.15. It is the foundation of saluation. The reason hereof is, because it is ratified and confirmed by Christ his death (as no hu­maine couenant can be for they only last whiles ye par­ties liue,) Secondly it is (in time) sealed in the hearts of Gods children by faith. Ephe. 1.13. as also renewed and confirmed by the sacraments both in the old and new testament. 1. Cor. 11.24. et 21.

Vse 1. It teacheth vs first, not to despise the poore Iewes vnto whom this couenant was first made, and in some, of whom it is alwaies verified and accomplished.

Vse 2. We must by faith apply vnto our selues Christ & al his sauing benefits, that the couenant & testament may be firme and good in vs & vnto vs, for without applicati­on there is no benefit and comfort felt and enioyed of meate, drinke, apparell, phisick, weapon, so much losse of Gods promises.

When I shall take away their sinnes.

Doct.It is proper to God alone to forgiue and take away sin (as here in this place God taketh from the Iewes security and vnbeleife.Exod. 34, 7 Isa. 45, 25) Math. 6. Mark. 2.7. 2. Sam. 12.10.

The reasons hereof are first, for that sinne is committed only against the maiesty & law of God, and as for the of­fence or sin committed against any man or creature, it is no more in it selfe but an iniury wrong,Math. 6, v. 14 et 15 or trespasse.

Let herevnto be added that the breach of mans com­mandment, is no sin, vnlesse it do withal imply & include ye transgression of Gods commandment, that command­eth obedience therevnto in all things where it doth not [Page 99] contradict his law. Secondly God taketh away not onely the punishment, (as men in outward punishments partly can do) but also remoueth ye gilt & corruption of nature which none els can do. Ps. 51. ver. 2. and 7. Thirdly, Gods power and authority is most absolute and altogether in­dependent, & therfore he cannot be hindered or preuen­ted by any other, from granting and giuing pardon vnto his children, as the lame creple in Iohns Gospell was for 38. yeares.

Vse 1. Seeing that the Lord hath made a promise of for­giuenesse of sins to the Iewes, and to reconcile them by the couenant of grace, we must not despaire of their con­uersion, much lesse vex and reuile them, least God when he receiueth them againe into fauor, hee deseruedly ex­clude and cast out vs, for our contempt & vnthankfulnes.

Vse 2. Hereby also are checked and confuted al supersti­tious persons, Idolaters, Hypocrites, proud persons, Pha­risies and Papists, who seeke for righteousnes of a sinner before God, and for pardon and remission of sinnes not from Gods mercy alone in Christ, but from humaine sa­tisfactions, indulgences, purgatory and praiers for the dead, and humaine merits.

Vse 3. Seeing that God alone doth take away sinne, & that from them that seeke & sue for it, we must vse al the means to obtaine it, and namely, humbly confesse our sins vnto God, and cry vnto Heauen for pardon. For here in ye saying is chiefly verified, spare to speake, spare to speede.

Their sinnes.

The glory of our redemption by Christ,Doctr. and of the tes­tament of God, and the peculiar prerogatiue of the Ca­tholike Church chiefely consisteth in the forgiuenesse of all our sinnes,Isa. 23.24 Psa. 32. v. 12 Ioh. 8, v. 21. & Rom. 4, 7 and when they are not imputed vnto vs, and the punishments of them is remoued. Math. 1.21 Luk. 1.77. Act 3.19. Psa. 103. ver. 3. and 12.

1. Re. For it belongeth onely vnto the beleeuers and re­pentant. Iohn 3.16. Act. 3.19. but all vnbeleeuers and vnpenite [...]t persons are excepted,Isa. 62, [...] 24. for they albeit hee beares long with them (herein delaying their punishment,) yet God pardoneth not them, but they re­ceiue [Page 100] the end of it,Ioh. 3. v. 21 & 24 damnation.

The reason hereof is, because without forgiuenes of sins, we are more miserable then all creatures, for when wee end this miserable life, then we beginne that intolerable torment that shall neuer haue end nor ease.

Psa. 32, 1, 2 Psa. 38, 4Secondly of all burthens it is most heauy and most presseth downe the conscience, as Dauid by experience felt: for he pronounceth him blessed, that is eased of the burthen of his sin. Thirdly it is a principal article of faith, and a specia [...]l prerogatiue of the Chruch, who beleeueth the forgiuenesse of her sinnes and is eased thereof.

Fourthly, it is the cause (onely) of our righteousnesse before God, and the gate of euerlasting happinesse, and therefore they are onely blessed that rely vpon Gods free mercy for the pardon of their sinnes.

Vse 1. Ministers must learne hence in their sermons not to propound and offer remission of sinnes to all men in­differently, & without condition (as the Papists do, who absolue whore-mongers, murderers, drunkards, traytors, blasphemers whom God doth not absolue,) but only to those that beleeue and truly repent.

Vse 2. They hence are knowne to erre & to be deceiued who thinke that remission of sins, is but the beginning of righteousnes and happines, wheras, seeing that in ye faith­full & deere seruants of God there are so many faults, de­fects and errors, it sufficeth not once to haue entered the way of blessednes, vnlesse the same grace do follow vs, vnto the tearme and end of our life.

Vse 3. Here are condemned ye heathen Philosophers, who being ignorant of true blessednes & the means to attaine vnto it, sought it in honors, pleasures, speculation, autho­rity, morall actions, and not in Christ by faith, of whom they were altogither ignorant. Secondly Iewes, who albe­it (in some sort) they apprehended and vnderstood tru [...] blessednes yet they fought to be partakers of it, by their owne works▪ & by the ceremonies of the law, and not by forgiuenesse of sins through Christ only,Rom. 9, v. 31 and 32 and hence they stumbled at the stumbling stone.

[Page 101]Lastly Papists who wil be saued by their own works and satisfactions and be hereby iustified before God.

Vse. Seeing that the remission of sinnes is so excel­lent and singular a priuiledge of the Church, wee must (if neede bee) purchase this treasure and this pearle with the losse of all that wee haue,Math, 13. V. 44.45. and hauing once ob­tained it, we must alwaies and from our hearts giue God thanks for it.

Vse. Lastly desiring to be assured of the pardon of our sins, we must not willingly and wittingly sin against the light of our conscience and offend ye diuine Maiesty, but hate, leaue & forsake them, otherwise sin vnrepented off, is neuer forgiuen. Iohn 8.21.24. Luke 13. V. 3.5.

As concerning the Gospell they are enemies for your sake, Ver. 28. but as touching the election, they are beloued for the Fathers sakes.

For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. Sense. As concerning the Gospell .i. so farre forth as they resist and persecute it, they are enemies.

1. Hatefull to God, they are enemies vnto God, and he vnto them, for your sake .i. you by occasion hereof, may be receiued into their roome, and because they hate, dis­tast and persecute you for the profession of the Gospell. But as touching the election .i. in regard that very many in this nation are chosen for eternall life, they are beloued .i. deare vnto God: for the fathers sake .i. for by reason of ye promise made to the holy Fathers, Abraham, Isaack and Iacob.

For the gifts of God .i. his free promises which of his grace he doth promise,Ver. 29▪ offer and bestow vpon men: and calling of God .i. that whereby he already hath and yet doth call [...]ome of the Iewes, to the knowledge of Christ, & wherby he doth determine in his due time to cal ye rest: are without repentance .i. they are irreuocable, constant, & such as he cannot repēt off, for his decree if vnchāgeable.


  • Enemies for our sake.
  • Beloued for the fathers sake.

[Page 102]1. Qu. Can one and the same person be an enemy and a friend vnto God, beloued and hated of him, at one & the same time, especially seeing that the affirmation hereof seemeth to imply a flatte contradiction?

Answ. Yes, thus Paul before his conuersion, was a friend of God in regard of his election, albeit an enemy before; and thus our Sauiour Christ, is said to giue his life for his friends. Iohn. 15.13. But in Rom. 5.10. Christ is said to reconcile vs vnto his Father by his death, whiles we were yet sinners, & when we were enemies: as that all the Elect are by nature children of wrath, and enemies vnto God, but they are also friends and beloued euen before their calling and sanctification, because by the grace and mer­cy of God, they are from all eternitie chosen and beloued in Christ, Rom. 9.11.13 and because God will & doth in time call them to faith, knowledge and obedience.

Secondly, we, for the clearing of the Text answer, that the Iewes in Pauls time, and sithence were and are ene­mies vnto God, in regarde that the greatest multitude of them were reprobates & so cast off, but yet both then and euer since, they are beloued of God, so many of them, as are elected, which albeit they then and hitherto haue bin but few, yet at their generall calling, it will appeare that they are very many.

Beloued for the Fathers sake.

Quest. If any one be loued (as here we haue a particu­lar instance) for his Fathers sake, then a man may bee called and conuerted by reason of and for his fathers me­rits? and so euery man shall not liue by his owne faith?

Iohn. 1. v. 13. Ans. The argument followeth not. For first, faith and regeneration commeth not by naturall succession, but proceedeth altogether from grace▪ Ezek. 18.20. Secondly the children of the faithfull, are not for their parents faith, accepted to eternall life,Abac. 2. v. 4. but they must beleeue them-selues, and liue and bee saued by their owne faith.

Lastly,2. S [...]m. 7.14. & 15. in that the Iewes are beloued for their Fathers sake (as Salomon was neuer wholy depriued of Gods spirit and fauour for Dauids sake) it proceedeth not [Page 103] from their workes or persons, but onely from Gods gra­tious and euerlasting couenant, the fountaine and roote of it.Ier [...]m. 31.33 The summe of the couenant is, that God will be their God and the God of their seede, and therefore there must be some to whom the couenant must bee made good and fulfilled, and these are loued for the couenant sake.

The gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Quèst. Touching the graces of God if they bee neuer taken away, why doth God so often depriue men of them, that formerly had them?

Ans. First▪ Deut. 19.27.28 Isa Deut. 32.21 they are common and temporall gifts, either of nature, policie, or else of illumination and outward profession onely, that are common to Gods children with reprobates, these God doth strip and depriue men of ma­ny times for their vnthankfulnesse, and to discouer their vnsoundnesse and hypocrisie.

Secondly,Math. 13, 19▪ 25, 2 [...], [...]. because men (who are cōmonly Reprobates) alwayes neglect, contemne, and abuse them, & thus they quench and put out the holy spirit, and what light soeuer was offered vnto them, and whatsoeuer knowledge and grace of God was bestowed vpon them, it dyeth in them by little and little: for God in his iustice taketh his tal­lent from them, as hee did from Saul and Iudas. But for those peculiar endowments of Gods elect which are linked and chained vnseperably together, such as are predestination, Rom. [...].3 [...]. vocation, iustification, and glorification, these are giuen to the Godly in fe [...] simple, and are neuer taken away from them.

The calling of God without Repentace.

Quest. Why then did God repent that he created man, and that hee made Saul King, and why doth hee many times reuoake his promise and his threarnings?

Ans. This is spoken figuratiuely and vnproperly, for the change is not in his Gods will and decree, but onely in the things or euent, and that as the conditions in men implyed and vnderstood, are changeable.

Secondly, by this kind of speech God would shew how [Page 104] hainous and horrible were mans sinnes, and naturall cor­ruption, proceeding partly from his rebellious will, and partly from the Diuell.

Thirdly, God declareth that he, in respect of the out­ward worke and act, will doe that which men when they repent, vse to doe, namely destroy his worke: Thus hee drowned the whole world in Noah his time, and in fight caused Saul to be slaine.

Gen. 6.6.7 8. Ier. 18. v., God hath purposed and ordained at once, by his stedfast decree, that he will so often ratifie this change of the effects of his anger and mercies, as often as any iust cause commeth betweene, Ezek. 24.25. Math. 18.35. Rom. 2.6. which inter-current cause if it be euill, God de­creed the permission and ordering of it onely, but if it be good, God decreed to worke it, and doth in time bring it into act and effect.

As concerning the Gospell they are enemies.

Doctr. Seeing that the Iewes oppugning the preaching of the Gospell, and refusing to admit of it, are said to bee enemies vnto God, we draw this generall Theoreme, viz. that all men, during the time that they receiue not the word of God,Luk. 19.27. Apoc. 11.7. & 10. but resist and with-stand the course and preaching of it, are Gods enemies and hated of them, Apoc. 12. v. 4. & 17. 1. Thes. 2.15.16. 2. Tim. 4.15.

Reas. The reason hereof is, because the Preaching and ministery of the word is Christs golden Scepter, vnder which all his subiects must be ranged, and his easie yoake that all his people must beare, Math. 11. v. 29.30.

1. Vse. This serueth to condemne Iewes, Turkes, Pa­pists, false brethren, and all vnderminers and persecutors of the Church, who, howsoeuer they slatter themselues in their sinnes, errors and Idolatry, and thinke they do God seruice, yet in very truth, they are nothing else then Gods flatte enemies, and they that refuse to be sworne to, and acknowledge his supremacy ouer their soules and bodies.

2. Vse. Secondly we must take heed, that wee make no leagues of amitie, or of vnnecessary traffique, with them, least (in fine) by our ouer-much sociablenes & familiarity [Page 105] with them wee learne their workes and pollute our selues with their sinnes, Psa. 106 35 and abhominations. 2. Cor. 6.16.

They are nothing but pitch, poyson and contagious leapers, by whose familiarity we may soone bee defiled and infected.

Vse 3. We must not by our dissimulation, hipocrisie & ill life harden and confirme them in their sins & heresies, but (to the vttermost extent and straine of our ability) endeuor both by life and doctrine, to gaine & win them.

Vse 4. We must remember how God hath for these ma­ny hundred years punished their contempt & contuma­cy both with spiritual & bodily punishment & captiuity, and forasmuch as we professe our selues to be Christs subiects and seruants, to suffer no euil lusts and concupi­scences to rule and raigne in vs, but to permit Christ by his word and his spirit to guide & gouerne vs, otherwise we shalbe bruised with an Iron rod, slaine before Christ his face, and shall neuer enter into his rest, the heauenly Canaan and the heauenly Ierusalem. Ps. 2. v. 9. Lu. 19.27. Heb. 3. v. 18. & 19.

But they are beloued for the Fathers sake.

God in his elect doth not consider what they deserue, nor alwaies respect thē according to their present vnbe­liefe, but regardeth what he hath promised to Abraham and his seed, and therefore he wil not change his purpose, but in time vouchsafeth them his sauor, albeit for the pre­sent (by reason of their vnbeleife, and impenitency) hee frowne vpon them and seeme to disfauor and renounce them. The reason hereof is first, because God is good & ful of goodnes, mercy and truth, vpon the communica­tion of which, he (vpon mens conuersion) expecteth and requireth all the praise, honor & glory to be yeelded and ascribed vnto him only. Secondly God by shewing mer­cy to ye degenerate Iewes, wil at length get him far grea­ter glory and renown of his mercy & power then before.

Vse 1. Let vs not our selues dispaire of Gods mercy by reason of our former & present errors and enormities (be they neuer so many & mighty,) for our saluation depend­eth [Page 106] not vpon our owne workes and deserts, but onely vpon Gods vnchaungeable decree, but let vs truely and vnfainedly repent of them & forsake them, and then vn­doubtedly we shall liue and die in the loue and fauour of God.

2. VseLet vs not dispise the Iewes, nor doubt of their conuersiō and saluation, but in respect of Gods couenant, wish well vnto them, pray for them, and further their saluation.

3. Vse. If God loue the Iewes for their Fathers sake and for his couenant made with them, and not for any thinge wherein they could pleasure or profit him, we must here­in follow and imitate the Lords example, and not loue true Christians in by respects, namely because they be our kindred onely,1. Pet. 3 8. 2. Iohn 1. Rom. 12.9 or because we reape some commodity by them, or that they serue our turne, but in the spirit and for the truth sake onely, for this is right loue and that which God requireth, commendeth and rewardeth.

The calling and gifts of God are without repentance.

From the perpetuity and constancy of Gods calling and his sauing giftes and promises in his elect, I gather that none of Gods elect can wholy or finally fall or possibly be damned.Doctr. Rom. 8.1.2. Tim. 2.19.

For first God is without change and alteration in his nature,Ioh. 5.24. Lam. 3 22. decree, couenant, promises, and neuer wholy re­uoketh and abolisheth his worke in them.

Secondly his mercies towards them faile not, but al­waies streame forth to their continuall comfort; for God is truth and will alwaies performe his promises.

Lastly, God is almighty and cannot be hindred (much lesse ouer ruled by any creature) neither can any disanull that which God hath ratified, or condemne those whom he will saue. Rom. 8.33.34.

This doctrine checketh the corrupt and presumptuous opinion of the Papists, that teach constancy and saluation to reside in our owne power and potency, wheras it con­sisteth wholy in the couenant and promises of God.

2. Vse. The second vse is, for comfort, and that is if we [Page 107] once perceiue and find in our selues some pawnes and Printes of Gods loue and fauour,Phil. 1.6. we may and must as­sure our selues,Luk. 14.29.30 of the perpetuity of it, without doubting, for God is constant in his giftes and neuer retracteth them though men doe often) and hauing begun a good worke, he wil finish and perfect it, he is not like him that in vs, beginneth to build a goodly house and cannot fi­nish it, but he will make euery one of his Saints an holy and perfect temple in the Lord Ephe. 2.21.

3. Vse. Seeing that God is no changeling vnto vs, but his bounty alwaies continueth, and his promises are in their time duly accomplished, let vs first learne hence to cleaue fast vnto him, and sincerely and incessantly to serue and feare him all the daies of our life. Second­ly let vs (in our words, deeds, couenants and promises) not deale hollowly and deceiptfully with men, but truly, iustly and simply, for he that halteth with men, is no better then an Hipocrite before God, and his religion is onely formall and fruitlesse Psa. 15.2.

30. Vers. For euen as ye in times haue not beleued God yet haue now obtained mercy through their vnbeleefe.

31. Vers. Euen so now haue they not beleeued, that by your mercy they may also obtaine mercy.

32. Vers. For GOD hath shut vp all in vnbeleefe that hee might haue mercy on all.

Sense: For euen as yee in times past .i. before Christ his incarnation, haue not beleeued in .i. obeied the word of God and his commandements nor acknowledged Christ Iesus for the sonne of GOD and your redeemer, yet haue now obtained mercy, i. God hath called you effectually, and endewed you with the true and sauing knowledge of God and his Gospell, through their vnbeleefe .i. by the oc­casion that the Iewes would not receaue the Gospell, nor the Messias offered vnto them, but refuse both the one and the other.

Euen so now they .i. the Iewes haue not, beleeued viz. the Gospel, that by your mercy .i. by the mercy of God offered vnto you in your effectuall calling and in your sincere [Page 108] profession and intertainment of the Gospell may be pro­uoked and inflamed by an holy emulation to follow and affect you.

They may also obtaine mercie.

That is through Gods mercie, may be partakers of faith, remission of sins and saluation, that so it may bee appa­rant both to the Iewes and Gentiles that both are saued by his mercy and grace onely. For God hath shut vp .i. tyed bound and imprisoned together: all .i. all his elect both of Iewes and Gentiles, vnder vnbeliefe .i. sinne and hath kept them vnder his power and custody like a num­ber and sort of malefactors shutte vp into one prison, and so conuinced them, that they can by no meanes escape & finde ease and inlargement, that he might haue mercie .i. haue an occasion to inlighten and saue, all .i. all his cho­sen, whether Iewes or Gentiles, and so might actually and perfectly saue them by his mercie and fauor, and not for any merite or worth of theirs.

Ver. 30. Haue obtained mercie through their vnbeliefe.

Ques. Can euill be cause of good, and one mans vnbe­liefe be cause of an other mans beleeuing & conuersion?

Ans. No (to speake properly) for like cause, like effect, but it may be indirectly and by accident, as we see how that of euil manners are made good lawes. Now euill manners and enormities are no causes of enacting whol­some lawes, but onely occasions and accidentall mo­tiues.

Secondly no sinne doth more kindle Gods indigna­tion, and enrage his maiesty against vs, then infidellitie, & therefore it can be ye working cause of no good, but God who by his omnipotent wisdome draweth light out of darkenesse, knoweth how to direct ye vnbeleefe of some, to be a meanes and way for mercy to be shewed vpon o­thers. And thus when one Nation, Citty or Towne, refu­seth the Gospell of Christ, and will not suffer them-selues to bee ranged vnder it, God taketh it from them and be­stoweth (by occasion) vpon others that will bring forth more and better fruite in their season.

God hath shut vp all vnder vnbeleefe.

Verse 32.

Qu. Is mans incredulitie and vnbeliefe to be assigned to God, or is he the cause, author, or worke of it?

A. No: God is not the efficient cause of it, but the accu­ser and condemner of it, he doth not infuse Infidelity, but finding men in it, doth leaue and forsake them, so that he is rather deficiens quàm efficiens causa.

Secondly, God doth by the ministery of the lawe and by his iudgements, so conuince and attaint men of sinne, that they shall (or may) see and acknowledge, that there is no meane, merite, or cause to iustifie and saue them, but his mercy in Christ onely.

Thirdly, God would haue all men subiect to his iudg­ment, and that they laying aside and disclaiming all con­ceit of their owne merits and worthinesse, should expect saluation from him alone.

All, that is, Iewes and Gentiles vnder vnbeleefe.

Qu. Are all men by nature, both Iewes and Gentiles, equall in sinne and alike guiltie in Gods sight?

Ans. Yes, there is no difference, for all haue sinned and are depriued of the glory of God.Psal. 51. v. 5. Rom. 3.23. There is none that (naturally) doth good, no not one, and wee are all borne and conceiued in iniquitie.

Secondly, there is no merite, or desert, either in Iew or Gentile,Rom. 3. v. 23. why one should be preferred before an other: for they all are alike guilty of damnation, Eph. 2.3.

Qu. If one man by nature be not better then another, how then do they differ?

A. In men meere naturall and vnconuerted, God, for the vpholding and preseruing of Common-wealths and humaine societies, bestoweth generall and restraining grace more vpon one then another.

Secondly,Rom. 3.1.2. they doe or may differ in outward dignitie and priuiledges, as the Iewes much excelled the Gen­tiles; but otherwise the speciall grace and mercy of our God, maketh the maine difference betweene the Elect and the Reprobate.

[Page 110]For the one hath in time renuing and sauing grace communicated vnto him; but the other is vtterly de­nied it.

That hee might haue mercy one all.

Quest. Is there then no particular election, or is it only vniuersall?Math. 22.14. Rom. 9 22.

Ans. Election is not of all, but of some, for hee that maketh choise of any thing, singleth out some, and lea­ueth the rest.

Secondly, many be called, but few are chosen.

Thirdly, there bee vessels of wrath whom God hath prepared to destruction, as well as there be vessels of mer­cy, whom he hath prepared for glory.

Lastly, either all should bee saued, which the Scripture in many places refelleth, or else Gods predestination, which is a sure and certaine foundation should be sha­ken and alterable.

Might haue mercy on all.

Quest. Will God saue all (none excepted) or can it bee soundly gathered hence, that hee will saue the greatest part of men in the world?

Ans. No, for the greatest number is reiected; Christs flocke is but a little flocke, a remnant, an handfull, a tenth, a gleaning in comparison of them that perish, and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction, and many goe that way, but narrow is the way that leadeth to life and few finde it. But the meaning of the Apostle here is, that God will haue mercy in some, of all rankes, states, orders and conditions, and that hee will haue it notified that all that are saued, are saued by his mercy onely.

Quest. If God will not shew speciall mercy on all men, but doth reserue it onely for the elect; why doth hee by preaching offer it to all men in many Countries and Kingdomes, and other particular Citties and places, and hereby allure and inuite them to faith and repen­tance?

Ans. The more to conuince them, and to leaue them without all excuse in the daye of the Lord, because [Page 111] they doe not, nor will not admitte or receiue it being offered. Iohn. 9, 39. and 41. Rom. 2. verse 6. Iohn. 15. verse 24.Rom. 9.

Secondly, all cannot receiue it, because they are not vessels of mercy.

As yee haue obteyned mercy,
So now they — may obtaine mercy.

From this sampling,Doctr. and paralleling of both places and members together this doctrine naturally ariseth. In the order of saluation the Iewes and Gentiles are like and equall, and by nature children of wrath, and enemies to God, but they by grace and mercy onely, and not any merit of their owne, are called, conuerted and saued. Ephe. 2. v. 3. 1 Pet. 2. v. 25.

For first, God in sauing and conuerting all, is one and the same, without change and alteration, and the mini­stery of his law for conuincement and direction, and the Gospell for faith and conuersion is alwayes one, and the same. Finally the spirit that is promised to both is one and the same, the doctrine of the old and new Testament one and the same, and so the Church one and the same. Secondly, Gods workes are semblable, and one serue for the illustration and demonstration of the other.

Vse. Let vs not despaire of the Iewes conuersion, or of the calling and saluation of any, but hope well of it, pray for it,1. Cor. 13.7. and labour to further it, seeing that without Gods mercy and grace none is better then others, and that Gods mercy which hath beene vouchsafed vnto vs, may extend it selfe in good time vnto others, yea vnto those that wee haue least hope of. Titus 3. v. 3.4. and that are last called and furthest off, Luke 13. v. 30.

V. 31. So now they — by your mercy may obtaine mercy.

Heere wee see a notable effect and end of good zeale in godly men, namely, that by the example and pre­sident thereof, others bee stirred vppe to emulation [Page 112] and to follow them. For here we see that the calling of the Gentiles and their zeale and holy example are so far from preiudicing or hindering the Iewes saluation, that God shall take an occasion hence, to prouoke them to follow the Gentiles, and to imbrace the Gospell, so that they shal not perish, but at length be cōuerted & saued. How much zeale and good examples of godlinesse, kindnesse, liberalitie, courage and constancie, may pro­uoke and profit others, as by many other examples, so by these following it is most manifest and demonstrable in Iosua and the Elders of his time, who by their authori­tie and example reteyned the people all their daies in Gods sincere seruice. Iosua, 24.31.

In the woman of Samaria, who by her example and re­report induced and prouoked many of the Samaritans to heare and beleeue in Christ.Ioh. 4. V. 29.30. Acts 18.8. In Crisp [...] the chiefe Ruler of the Synagogue, who by his faith, and by the sweet perfume of his familie, moued many of the Corinthians to heare, beleeue and receiue the Gospell.

2. Corinth. 8.Lastly, the Macedonians (albeit otherwise in afflicti­on and extreame pouertie) by their free and willing con­tribution and collection for the reliefe of other distressed Saints, prouoked the Corinthians to doe the like.

1 Vse Hereby lette vs learne and be admonished what should be the scope of our doctrine life, and zeale, namely that it may bee a motiue and prouokement vnto others to resemble vs in good things, that are plea­sing and acceptable in Gods sight. Let vs then breake-off and surcease from enuie, spites and all contempt, for hereby we rather kill them, then conuert them, and har­den them then helpe them forward.

2. Vse. Here is condemned the ill zeale and example of Papists, Turkes, Anabaptists, Schismatikes and the like, who hereby seduce and scandallize others, and if they do not destroy their faith, yet they much impaire and wea­ken it: woe to these that giue and raise great offenses; better it were for them (if they repent not) that they had neuer beene borne.Luk 17. v, 1.2.

For that God hath shut vp all in vnbeliefe.

In that God hath shut vp all .i. Conuinced them by his lawe and word, and declared them thus to be captiuated and inclo­sed in the prison of their sinnes, that it might appeare and bee there notified to all men, that the pardon of sinne and their sal­uation proceedeth only from Gods mercie, we learne this in­struction, viz: Doct. That all men are sinners & vnrighteous, prone vnto euill, and slow vnto good, yea, and vnfit and vnable to it, and are hereof attainted and conuinced by the lawe of God, in so much that they are in no better estate before God then guiltie and condemned persons and malefactors, who tremb­ling and astonied looke for nothing but death. Psal. 6. V. 3.7. Psal. 130. V. 3. Psal. 143. V. 2.

Thus must Paul (before that God shew mercie vpon him) be conuinced and proued to be a blasphemor and persecutor, an oppressour, Mary Magdalen to be an impure and filthie liuer, Peter to haue denied Christ his Lord and Sauiour three times, and that, with cursing and swearing: that it might ap­peare that saluation consisteth onely in gods free mercie and not in mans worthynesse or workes.

1. Vse. Let vs not please our selues in nobilitie, stocks, gen­try, witte, wealth, priuiledges, for God respecteth not these, but the heart and the worke of the spirit, much lesse lette vs think not hardly, or dispaire of others (especially of the Iewes) for we deserue no more at Gods hands then they, but are alike conceiued and borne in sinne and by nature the children of wrath as well as they. Eph, 2.3.

2. Vse. Here are condemned those that iustifie them-selues before God, and that will be saued by their owne workes, and so presumptiously and proudly either deminish or denie the grace and free mercie of God, then which nothing can bee imagined more iniurious and disglorious to the diuine good­nesse and clemencie.

3. Vse. Wee must learne with sorrow and greefe to confesse and lay open our sinnes before God, yea to be abashed, asha­med and confounded in regard of them,Ezech. 16.5.8. and withall flee to the throne of grace, and supplicate for mercie and forgiuenes For the more miserable wee finde our selues to bee, and the more wee depend vppon Gods helpe and goodnesse, the [Page 114] more fauour wee shall obtaine, and the sooner procure mer­cy at his hands. That he might haue mercie on all.

That is, of all sorts both amongst Iewes and Gentiles.

Doct.In the matter of our iustification, vocation, saluation, Gods mercie is onely seene, and neither Iewe nor Gentile are saued otherwise then by his fauour and mercie. Titus, 3. v. 4.5. Eph. 2. v. 3.4.5. Rom. 3. v.

The reason hereof is, first, because Iewes and Gentiles are alike guilty before Gods iudgement seate, as it hath beene be­fore proued.

Secondly, God is bound and beholding to none, for who hath giuen him any thing, but it shall be recompenced? And therfore al whom he saueth, he saueth by his meere mercy and grace, and not for any matter or merit yt he could find in them.

1. Vse. Here is condemned the grosse and palpable error of those which thinke that (in the processe of time) all shal be saued, yea the very diuels, as Origine dotingly dreamed. Wher­as the fewest are elected, called, iustified, and none shall bee sa­ued but they, and this will the last iudgement make manifest to all the world.

2 Vse. It serueth also to ouerthrow & refute the fond & false opinion of al mans merits, for we receiue all things from Gods meer mercy, and there is no place for mens deserts and merites.

3. Vse. Thirdly, wee must not abuse and peruert GODS mercies, to the lust and libertie of the flesh, for his mercie is proper and reserued for them that feare him and are dis­pleased in them-selues for their sins, & not for such lewd and presumptious minded Libertines that haue no feare of God before their eyes.

Lastly, though with the Saints of God in Scripture wee sometimes (through Satans suggestion and our owne frailtie and negligence) fall into many great and grieuous sins, yet we must neuer dispaire of Gods mercies, but repent whiles we haue time, and by faith apply them to our selues. For they are bottomelesse, most plentious, and neuer faile them that tru­ly repent and beleeue.

The sixt part of the Chapter.

V. 33. O the deepenesse of the riches, both of the wisdome and [Page 115] knowledge of God! How vnsearchable are his iudgements and his waies passe finding out!

V. 34. For who hath knowne the mind of the Lord? Or who was his Counsailer?

V. 35. Or, who hath giuen vnto him first, & he shal be recōpensed.

V. 36. For of him, and through him, and for him, are all things: to him be glory for euer Amen.

Sense. O the deepnes of the riches both of the wisdome and knowledge of God .i. the riches of his deepnes, or O the deepe plentifull and Ocean Sea that can neuer be drawn dry of these attributes of Gods knowledge and wisdome, whereby God knoweth his, and when he will call them, and most wisely and iustly determineth of them, and disposeth and gouerneth all men and all actions (albeit our poore and shallow vnderstan­ding cannot apprehend it, and many times iudgeth amisse.) How vnsearchable are his iudgements? i. his meanes & manner both in chusing and refusing, in shutting vp all vnder sinne, in sauing and condemning men, cannot possibly be sounded and found out by mans reason, and his waies past finding out .i. no man can find out his secret purposes and disseignes, for they are not reuealed in the Scriptures.

V. 34. For who hath knowne the mind of the Lord?

Sense. Viz. Who hath knowne his purpose and counsailes & secret iudgements that are not disclosed and declared in the word?Eph. 3. v. 16.11. Or who was his Counsailer? In the creation and preser­uation of the world, in the redemption, gouernment and salua­tion of his Church, he needed not mans aduise and counsaile, but performed all by counsaile of his owne will.

V. 35. Or who hath giuen to him first? i. Who hath bestowed any benefit or blessing vppon God and so hath made him a debpter vnto him, and he shal be recompensed .i. he will repay and requite him. For of him and from him are al things, they haue their being and beginning from god, and through him al things are adiministred and gouerned by him, and for him .i. they are created and ordained, to set forth his glorie, To him be glory for euer Amen .i. Let al humaine and worldly glo­rie cease & vanish away, and let al ye glory of goodnes, mercy wisdome, and iustice bee ascribed onely vnto God, of vs and of al creatures for euer Amen.

[Page 116]I beleeue it shall bee so, and I pray that it may bee so.

Ques. How vnsearchable are Gods iudgements?

Ans. If Gods waies and iudgements be vnsearchable, why are wee commanded to search the Scriptures, or the Israelites taxed and reproued for being ignorant of Gods waies? Ioh. 5. v. 38. Psal. 95. v. 10. Math. 22. v 29.

Gods waies and iudgements in this place are taken for his secret will, which hee reserueth to him-selfe, and which no man is to inquire into, for it is bottomelesse gulfe, and will drowne them, and a flame that may not be come vnto but wil burne them, it is the Arke that may not be looked into. But for his reuealed will which he hath manifested in Scripture, all sorts of people are commanded to search, learne and know: prouided that they keepe them within the boundes of sobri­etie, and do not measure misticall and supernaturall things by the scantling and shallownesse and humaine reason.

Who hath knowne the mind of the Lord?

Ob. In the knowledge of God consisteth mans saluati­on, therefore God hath reuealed it vnto men, and to Prophets and Apostles especially.

A. First indeed in the knowledge of Gods reuealed will con­sisteth mans saluation, and this euery man is commanded and bound to know;Deuter. 29. ver. 29. for here we haue whatsoeuer serueth for our instruction, but for hidden thinges and these which God hath not reuealed, whereof the Apostle speaketh, we cannot know (but by the euent) neither must we desire it, but conteyne our selues within the limites and lists of Gods word.

Secondly, if it were granted (as it must not) that the Apost­le spake here of misteries & secrecies conteyned in the Scrip­ture, we answer that no mortall man can by his owne sence & reason vnderstand them,Math. 19. v. 17. Ioh. 3.5. v. 4.9.10. for it iudgeth falsly and preposterous­ly of them. 1. Cor. 2.14. therefore wee must reuerently and soberly follow the direction & guidance of Gods good spirit.

Thirdly the godly by the illumination & teaching of gods spirit vnderstand al things, yt are simply, necessary for their sal­uation. Lastly albeit the regenerate know the minde of the Lord and his reuealed will in holy scriptures; yet but by de­grees and in part, & some more, some lesse, according to their [...] mortification &c.

[Page 117] Q. How can we, or why are we commanded to giue and as­cribe glory to God, seeing that we can by our praises adde nothing to his renowne and perfection?

An. Albeit, we cannot adde any thing to Gods nature and perfection and glory, yet we are bound by his commandment and it is our duty to acknowledge him to be, as he is, and as he hath reuealed himself in holy scripture viz. most holy, perfect, and glorious. Secondly, we must shew forth, testifie and de­clare his name, nature, attributes and workes vnto men, that they hereby may be enformed better of him, and stirred vp to glorifie him, and thus we hallow and sanctifie Gods name.

O the deepnesse of the riches both of the wisdome, and knowledge of God!

It is proper to the Godly and their office and [...] to thinke,Doctr. speake and consider of, yea to admire the w [...]rkes & counsailes of God, and to brast forth into holy exclamations and to stir and exite others so to do.Psa. 118. v. 2, 3, 4, 5. Psal. 8. v. Psal. 92. ver. 5. Psal. 119. ver. 18. Psal. 46. v. 7. Cant. 5. a verse 10. ad. 17. The reason hereof is, they alone being taught of God, know (a­boue al other persons) the incomparable excellency and order of them, and therefore for skill, know best how, and how farre to iudge of them. Secondly, they must be instruments and trumpets, to sound and proclaime the praises and wonders of the Lord, for the satisfaction of their owne consciences, and to affect and gaine others so to do.

Vse 1. Let ministers (especially) and also others labour and striue to affect & possesse others with the rarenesse, excelency, & admirablenes of Gods workes and proceedings, for so did Dauid in many places. Psa. 48. v. & Psa. 8. v. 1.

Vse 2. As oft as our reason is offended with the doctrine & depth of predestination (albeit so euidently and expresly set forth in scripture) let vs renounce reason, and giue glory vnto God, and with most humble reuerence admire that deepe wisdome which with the eye of our vnderstanding, we cannot pierce into. Thus did Christ. Math. 11.25.26.

3. Vse. It serueth to condemne and argue all that repine at, murmure at, reprehend gods proceedings, and especially in the decree and matter of reprobation, whereas Gods is most wise, iust and of absolute power and authoritie, and therefore al­waies [Page 118] doth and cannot but order, rule and dispose of all things rightly, albeit our weake apprehension cannot attaine vnto the reason of it.

The wisdome and knowledge of God.

The doctrine, that we learne hence is that God being most wise, and knowing all things doth not onely see and con­template them, as they are, or may be, but doth contriue them with singular reason and counsell, and dispose them in most goodly forme, waight, number and measure, so that nothing in his workes may seeme to be wanting or disordered, no­thing superfluous or ouer much, but all in an excellent temper and symetry. And hence God is sayd, to be wise in heart. Iob. 9.4. nay only wise. Rom. 16.27. 1. Tim. 1.17. For he alone by himselfe is infinitely wise, needing no mans instruction or information. Isa. 40. ver. 12, 13, 14. Pro. 8.12. Iob. 28. cap. [...]3. &c. Now this wisdome of God shineth forth chiefely in the principall workes of God, namely in the creation, preser­uation and gouernment of the world, in the gouerning & or­dering of man-kinde. Ier. 51.15. Isa. 40.28. But most euident­ly in the predestination of men and in the wonderfull manner of euerlasting saluation purchased by Christ. Eph. 3. v. 10. in so much that the very Angells desire throughly to behold it. 1. Pet. 1.12.

Vse 1. Here are iustly condemned those men that mutter and murmur against Gods proceedings, & find fault with and condeme any worke or iudgment of God, as though it were not wisely ordained, but wee must reuerence, adore and ad­mire his excellent wisdome appearing in them and especially in the mistery of eternall saluation, euen then when our blind and vnperfect reason espieth and perceiueth no reason of it. Touching the misteries conteined in Gods reuealed will, let vs by humble and earnest praier beseech and entreate the Lord that he would more cleerely day by day, open them vn­to vs, Psal. 73. ver. 17. Psal. 119. ver. 18. Ephe▪ 1.17. by the ministery of his word and spirit.

O the deepenesse of the riches both of the wisdome and knowledge &c.

Doctr.We must in the hidden misteries and secrecies of almighty God, not be curious to know impossibilities, much lesse, to [Page 119] obiect and except against the manner of Gods proceeding herein; but containe our selues within the precincts and lim­mits of his word, and adore and admire the secret counsailes of God, and not vainely and rashly attempt to finde & serch them out. Psal. 36. ver. 6.

The first reason hereof is, for that the infinite wisdome and glory of God appeareth in this, that his iudgements and se­crets, (especially in matters of predestination and reprobation, and of particular euents and of the moments and times there­of) are conceiled and kept from vs.2 Ch. 32. v. 21 God will not (as Ezechias foolishly and vainely did shew all his riches and treasures to the Babilonish ambassadours) God I say wil not in this world impart and communicate his in-most counsailes to any but by the euent only.

The second reason is, because God in dispensing of matters, hath hidden contraries as it were vnder contraries. viz. con­trary ends vnder contrarie means, life vnder death, glory vn­der shame, riches vnder pouerty. 2 Cor. Hebr. 2.25. Thirdly the Apostle Paul, could not, nor durst serch them, much lesse we that are so much inferiour vnto him and haue no Apostolicall gifts.

Vse 1. This doctrine refuteth and condemneth all curious, friuolous, and vnnecessary questions such as these following: why did God creat man apt to fall?Curious ques­tions. why did not God pre­uent, or keepe him from falling? why doth God elect some & refuse others? why doth not God cause his word to bee prea­ched in one and the same age, in all places of the world? why doth God condemne men for vnbeleife; seeing that no man can possibly beleeue, vnlesse God confer faith vpon him? why doth God not conuert all; seeing that he can do it? why hath God and yet still doth, suffer the greatest part of the world, to remaine in error and blindnesse? why doth he at one time call more then at another? Is not God vniust & cruel to predestnat men to condemnation before they haue done good or euill? Vse 2. As often as in the confusion & disorders yt seeme to be in the world our faith beginneth to wauer, let vs remember yt Gods iudgment in the whole gouernment of ye world,Psal. 36.7. is most deseruedly cōpared to a uast huge deepe, yt filleth heauen and earth: & yt which by they eie of our iudgmēt we cannot peirce [Page 120] into, let vs rather reuerently submit our selues vnto, then cu­riously to prie and diue into it.

How vnserchable are his waies and his iudgements past find­ing out.

Who hath knowne the minde of the Lord?

We must not be curious,Doctr. inquisitiue or desirous to know, any thing of God and his waies, and of his course, and order, that he obserueth in disposing and managing vniuersall and parti­cular things,Deut. 29. v. 29 which hee hath not reuealed in holy scripture. Act. 1.6. where God hath no mouth to speake we must haue no eares to heare, and where hee ceaseth directing, wee must cease enquiring. Math. 12.22. wicked therefore is the prac­tise of those that by Astrology and other indirect means seeke to know the day of mens death, and calculate issues of parti­cular intendments. The first reason hereof is, for that they are deeper and more profound, then that mans reason can find out, and if we busie and trouble our selues herein, we shall at length be oppressed with the brightnesse of Gods maiesty & confounded in our owne vaine imaginations. Secondly, they that are curious and inquisitiue herein, fall (through Gods iust iudgement) into such intricate laborinthes, that they can ne­uer recouer themselues out of, and plunge themselues into such a bottomlesse gulfe, out of which they shall neuer arise. Thirdly we haue matter and employment sufficient, and that for our soules health, to bestow and busie our selues in all the daies of our life, in serching out, musing vpon, and in laboring to bring into vre and practise, Gods will reuealed, which con­teineth that which is aboundantly sufficient for saluation, we can neuer in this mortality sound out the depth of it, much­lesse follow and obey it: ergo, what vanity and follie is it, to omit and leaue vndone that which God hath commanded & which so highly concerneth vs,Mich. 6, 8 Rom. 12.22 and preposterously and vn­profitably to busie our selues to know things impossible and vnlawfull for vs to know, and the knowledge thereof would be hurtfull vnto vs?

Vse 1. Let vs leaue and bid adue to all vaine speculations, wherein we do nothing but offend God, wearie and wast our wits, and trifle out our times vnprofitablely, much rather let vs exercise our selues and senses in serching the holy scrip­ture [Page 121] and then labour chiefely to know and practise these things that concerne our faith, sanctification & saluation; here­in wee shall finde imployment ynough though we haue the wisedome of Salomon and could liue as long as Methu­sala did.

2 Vse. It must teach vs to rest contented in Gods counsailes and subscribe to his will, and when wee see many thinges to crosse our expectation & iudgement; we must not accuse God of iniustice and want of wisdome.

For hee alone knoweth what to doe and how to determine of all thinges and persons, and what is most agreeable to his diuine Maiestie, and whatsoeuer he doth is alwaies good (in regard of him-selfe) and nothing could be done more wisely and in better order: and therefore we must rather with al reue­rence adore these hidden secresies, then any way carpe or ca­uell at them.

3 Vse. Wee are admonished hereby to be thankefull to God for his wisedome and manner of disposing and gouerning all things,Iob. 1. v. 27. euen then when his iudgements & corruptions inflic­ted vpon our selues, seeme bitter, harsh and intollerable.

who was his Counsailer?Doct.

Doctr. God in the decreeing and disposing al things, and in procuring mans saluation needeth no counsail, vseth no mans aduice, but doth all thinges according to his owne good plea­sure, & after the counsaile of his owne wil, Psal. 115 v. 3. Eph. 1. v. 5.9.

The reason hereof is, because he is omnipotent, most wise, and God all sufficient vndependent of any other, and of whom all persons, and thinges, haue their beeing and dependance.

Secondly, GOD doth act and put in execution nothing in time but that which hee purposed and decreed before all times,Pro. 8. for otherwise he could not be wisdome it selfe, neither could the Sonne of God, his wisdome be, begotten before the Creation of the world.

1 Vse. Therefore let vs not murmure, or repine against any of his creatures and his workes, neither lette vs measure them after our owne shallow reason and vnderstanding, for the [Page 122] reason and beginning of it cannot be comprehended;Iob Psa. 39.17.18. it surmo­unteth all mens wits and capacities, and if Gods wisdome in the least creatures be past finding out, how much more in the mattter, and mistery of mans predestination and redemption?

Or who hath giuen vnto him first, and he shalbe recompensed?

God is debter and beholding vnto no man, and no man can alledge any seruice worke or study whereby he bindeth God to himselfe,Doctr. or should moue him to elect, preserue and re­deeme and glorifie him. Isa. 16.2. Luke. 17.9 10.

Psa. 8.4.Reason hereof. No man can ad any thing to God, for all that we haue, we receiue it onely from Gods mercy, and we de­pend vpon his goodnesse for it Psa. 16.2.23.

2. Reason: Gods power, will and decree, is free and absolute and hath no respect or relation to any thing from without his essence whatsoeuer. Rom. 9.15.

1. Vse. If God should (for our correction or triall) depriue & bereaue vs of wife, children, health, liuelihood, goods, houses (as he did his good seruant Iob) we must stay and comfort our selues herein,Math▪ 20.15. for all these thinges are Gods, they were giuen vs by him, and therefore they are not ours, and he a­lone may iustly doe with his owne what seemeth good to his diuine will and pleasure.

2. Vse. Here all humaine merits and fore-seene workes in the patriarkes and fore-fathers and their posterity, are debarred from any mouing or procuring cause of GODS fauour and mercy, declared vnto Iew or Gentile: for of them-selues men can doe nothing that is good, and therefore all proceedeth from Gods meere mercy.

Secondly in matter of reprobation none hath cause to be offended with God or to complaine of his proceedings, for his power and authority is free, and absolute, and he supreme of al creatures, and he may dispose of them as best seemeth good vnto his heauenly wisdome, and he is not to render any reason of his doings to any.

Lastly the very Reprobates are ordained in Gods decree & (touching the euent) to shew forth GODS glory as well as others,Rom: 9.22. for the glory of his Iustice shalbe manifested in and vpon them.

For of him are all things.

In that all things haue their being,Doctr. creation and preseruation from God onely, and so are of him directed, ordered, and go­uerned, we learne that he is God all sufficient both for himselfe and all his people and seruants, and that not only for their tem­porall life and happines, but much more for their regeneration, redemption and eternall saluation. Gen. 17.1.

He is our Shepheard how then can we want any thing? He hath Heauen and Earth at commaund and how then can his be destitute of that which is good for them? he was perfect and complet in him-selfe before the creation, and therefore his workes ad nothing to his owne nature and essence: and (to conclude) he worketh all things both in wordly and spirituall matters according to the pleasure of his owne will only, with­out any let or restraint.

Let vs therefore in no danger, temptation and necessty be daunted and discouraged,Psal. 23.1. for our God whom we serue is able to saue and deliuer vs, he knoweth how to proceed, and he is a most faithfull creator and an indulgent father vnto vs, on­ly let vs betrust him with the ordering of our affaires, and commend and betake our selues, liues maintenance and affaires vnto his gratious disposition, and he will neuer faile, nor for­sake vs.

For him are all things.

Seeing that all things,Doctr. yea the very reprobate and all the workes and wonders of GOD, are ordained to set forth the glory either of Gods mercy, or of his iustice we must not in hidden things dispute and repine and expostulate with GOD but patiently submit all to his good will and Pleasure, giue him the glory in all things Psa. 115.2. Luk. 17.16. 2. Cor. 10.17. Dan. 9.7. Apoc. 14.6. Ioh. 5 44.

For hereby we declare and testife our obedience,Rom. 9.22. duty and thankefulnesse. God hath created vs to this end and requireth this tribute and sacriáce at our hands.

Secondly, the title and interest in all things, and the power whereby they are.

[Page 124] Ioh. 5. v, 44. Ioh. 12. v. 43.1 Vse. Heereby are mette withall, and encountred all that seeke their owne glorie (as the Rulers in Christ his time) and seeke not Gods glory at all.

Secondly all Pharisies, Iustitiaries and Papists, who boast and brag of their owne merits, and looke to be saued (in part) by their owne deeds and workes, and not by Gods mercy and Christ Iesus his satisfaction and mediation only.

2 Vse. We must bee wary and carefull, that we neuer vsurp or diminish any part of Gods glory, for God is most iealous of his honour, and cannot indure that it should in any wise be impaired or impugned.

3 Vse. We must in all our wordes and works, consultations and actions, acknowledge, praise & honour God as the chiefe good and the most excellent cause of all thinges, and constantly maintaine and aduance his glo­ry: otherwise if we honour not him he wil neuer honor vs here, much lesse gloryfie vs in the life to come.


Faults escaped in printing.

Pag. 11. l. 1. as these. pag. 14 l. 18. auoy ded pag. 22 l. 18. and drawne. such. pag. 25. l 7. this cōsequence vvas but pag, 27. l. 12. yeelded n [...] pag. 29. l. 33. Night, pag. 36. l. 2. by good meanes. pag. 50 l. 13. Remainders, pag. 51. l. 14. an occasion. pag. 54. l. 1. read 1. Pet. 1. 13. pag. 58. l. 30. attendance, pag. 59. [...]. al we Gentiles, pag. 62. l. 13. VVorld, pag. 69. li. 9. is holy, and 19. God offereth and ibid. l. 28. and discerne them.


This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.