A SERMON Preached before the PEERS, IN THE Abby Church AT WESTMINSTER, November 7. 1666.

Being a Day of Solemn Humiliation for the Continuing Pestilence.

BY Edward Lord Bishop of Norwich.

LONDON, Printed by Tho. Ratcliffe for Iohn Durham, and are to be sold by Edward Thomas, at the Adam and Eve in Little Brittain. 1666.

A SERMON Preached before the PEERS, IN THE ABBY CHURCH at Westminster, Novemb. 7. 1666. Being a Day of Solemn Humiliation for the Continuing Pestilence▪

PHILIP. 4. 5.‘Let your Moderation be known unto all Men. The Lord is at hand.’

SOme Graces are primary, radi­cal and fundamental, which ha­ving their proper termination in God and Christ, are there­fore, as to their formal and immediate beau­ty, Invisible to any eye, but his who search­eth the Heart and tryeth the Reins. So [Page 2] our Repentance is said to be towards God, and Faith towards our Lord Iesus Christ, Acts 20. 21. our Faith and Hope is said to be in God, 1 Pet. 1. 21. As the Root, though the prin­cipal Seat of Life in the Tree, is under ground unseen, but the fruits flowing from that Life are visible; or, as the Orator saith of a goodly Structure, fastigia spectantur, latent fundament. So the most primitive and vital Graces are in themselves known onely to God, and to the Heart which enjoyes them; but in and by their fruits they may, and must be known unto men. By our Works we must shew our Faith, Iam. 2. 18. Act. 19. 18. Works, I mean, of transient Charity, which properly termimate upon others, without us; In which respect our Saviour, though he forbid us to do our Works to be seen of men, in a way of Ostenta­tion, Matth. 6. 1. 6. 16.—18. yet he com­mandeth us to let our Light shine before men, in a way of Edification, and to God's Glo­ry, Matth. 5. 16. and in order to the Same End, the Apostle here requireth us to let our Moderation be known unto all men.

The words contain, a serious and weigh­ty [Page 3] Doctrine, [...]. The Lord is near; and a Christian duty from thence inferred, Let your Moderation be known unto All Men; or an Exhortation to the Exercise of a Special Grace, and a most Solemn Argument, be­cause, The Lord is at hand. In the Ex­hortation is observable, 1. The vertue it self required, express'd by the Concrete for the Abstract, not without an Empha­sis, as I take it. Sometimes we finde a Concrete Superlative expressed by an Ab­stract, Ier. 50. 31. Behold I am against thee O Pride, that is, O thou most proud: and here an Extensive Abstract expressed by a Con­crete, as if he should have said, Let your Tongue, your Hand, your whole Conversation shew forth to all men, upon all occasions, this excellent and most ami­able Grace. 2. The Peculiarity or Chara­cteristical difference of this vertue inti­mated in the word [...], not a bare Phi­losophical, but a Christian moderation, such as becomes Believers. 3. The Conspicu­ousness thereof, [...], let it be really up­on all occasions manifested, for the Ho­nour of Christ, and Credit of Religion. [Page 4] 4. The Impartiality of it, It must be ma­nifested to all men; not onely unto good men, but unto the froward, that the mouths of Adversaries may be stopped, their Pre­judices refuted, their Emnities broken, and they won by the meek and humble Conver­sation of Believers to the obedience of the Gospell.

In the Argument unto this Duty, it is considerable, how many wayes the Lord is near unto his Servants, for their encou­ragement in so difficult and excellent a Duty; near, ad Auxilium, to Help them; near, ad Solatium, to Comfort them; near, ad Iudicium, to Reward them; near, per Inhabitantem Gratiam, to direct and enable them; near, per Exauditionis Clementiam, to Hear and Answer them; near, per Provi­dentiae oeconomiam, to Support and Protect them.

1. Believers are called unto an high and honourable Condition, the [...] and dignity of being the Sons of God, John 1. 12. and in that Condition they may, by the power of Corruption and Temptation, be in danger to be puffed up with pride and arrogancy [Page 5] above others, and to a supineness and secu­rity of Living, to sever their Dignity from their Duty: In this Case [...], that is, as Suidas, Hesychius, and Favorinus render it, [...], or [...], that which is decent or becoming, is to be known; we must walk secundum decentiam status Christia­nis, so as becometh the sanctity and dignity of our High Calling.

2. Again, being in common with other men expos'd to the various vicissitudes of Events; apt in Prosperity to be corrupted, in Adversity to be dejected, and according to diversity of Conditions, to express a dissi­milar and uneven behaviour; here again, [...], let your Moderation be known, [...], a serene, pacate, and sted­fast equability of minde, unshaken and fixed against all Events.

3. Again, being by the state of our Chri­stianity, and by reason of the Emnity which God hath put between the seed of the Woman and the seed of the Serpent, to expect, as Strangers in the midst of Adversaries, mani­fold afflictions and injuries, as the Scripture hath assured us, Act. 14. 22. 2▪ Tim. 3. 12. [Page 6] Here also [...], let your Moderation be known, [...], Moderation of patience in bearing Evils; [...], a Moderation of Candor and Equanimity; not putting suspicious and morose, but favoura­ble constructions upon Actions which have an appearance of unkindness; and [...], a Moderation of meekness and pla­cability, an easiness to be entreated, a readi­ness to forgive; as the Philosopher saith of such men, that they are [...], apt to pass by, and to pardon Injuries.

4. Again, having with other men a share and right in publick Iustice, and out of the debt of Self-love, being engaged there­by to preserve our own Interests, we may be tempted to rigour and extremity in the means thereunto, and to lay hold on the utmost advantages against our Brother: Here also the Exhortation is seasonable, that our Moderation be known; that we be ra­ther ready to part from our own right, than to prosecute it [...], with the strict­ness of a rigorous inflexibility; and so the Philosopher saith, that [...] is [...], a supplying of the defect, and [...], [Page 7] a rectifying and mitigating of the rigour of Legal Justice.

5. Again, because we have the Human Nature burthened with the same common In­firmities, and are of like passions with other men, we may be easily tempted and tran­sported many wayes into inordinateness and excess; we may use our knowledge and liberty undecently and exorbitantly, to the defiling of our Selves; we may use them unchari­tably, to the grief and scandal of our Bre­thren, as the Apostle sheweth, Rom. 14. 15, 21. 1 Cor. 8. 9, 12. 10. 23, 28, 29, 32. 1 Pet. 2. 16. we may use our power and au­thority sharply and severely, to the grie­ving, rather than benefiting our poor Bre­thren; in all such Cases the Apostle's Ex­hortation is seasonable, Let your Modera­tion be known; [...]; Mo­deration in Iudgement, not to disquiet the Church, or offend our Brethren with every unnecessary opinion of our own; not ri­gidly to insist on our Liberty, to the grief and scandal of our Brethren. Mode­ration of Power, not to be [...], severe Exactors of the extremity of Justice; but [Page 8] to adorne our authority, and render it amiable with clemency and meeknesse. Moderation of Passions, not to be tran­sported with excessive delights, overwhel­med with inordinate sorrows, or posses­sed with any other unruly or tempestuous affection, to the suffocating of Reason, and dishonour of Religion; but to let Grace and Wisdom hold the reins, and keep within just bounds of Temper and Sobriety what­soever offers to break forth into undecen­cy and excess. We see the wide extent and comprehensivenesse of this most amiable Grace. Give me leave to speak a word or two to each of these Particulars, and then I shall proceed to that which follows.

1. We must walk secundum decentiam & dignitatem status Christiani, so as becomes the Gospell, that we may credit and honour our most holy Profession, as those who have a Lord to rejoyce in, a God to pray unto, a Blessed appearing of a Glorious Saviour to wait for, as a People whom God hath form­ed for himself, to shew forth his praise, Isai. 43. 21. This is the frequent Exhortation of the Apostle, that we walk worthy of the [Page 9] Vocation wherewith we are called, Eph. 4. 1. as becometh the Gospel of Christ, Phil. 1. 27. So as we have learned and received Christ Iesus the Lord, Col. 2. 6. worthy of God, who hath called us to his Kingdom and Glo­ry, 1 Thess. 2. 12. as becometh Holyness, as a peculiar People, that we may adorn the Do­ctrine of God our Saviour in all things, Tit. 2. 3, 10, 14. and may shew forth the praises of him, who hath called us out of Darkness into his marvelous Light, 1 Pet. 2. 9. And truly there is nothing deserveth such Lamenta­tion as this, to consider how few there are who live consonantly to the Gospel; which will too evidently appear, if we consider the Law of Christ, the vow of Baptisme, and compare our Conversations with them. Are not these the Laws of Christ? He that hateth his Brother, is a Murtherer; He that looketh on a Woman lustfully, is an Adulterer; that we Resist not Evill; that we love our Enemies; that we lay not up for our selves Treasures in Earth, but in Heaven; that we enter in at the strait Gate; that He who will come after him, must deny himself, and take up his Cross and follow him; that we learn [Page 10] of him to be meek and lowly, who when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffred, threat­ned not: In one word, that we should walk as he walked, and observe all things whatso­ever he hath commanded us? and have we not solemnly vowed all this in our Baptisme? wherein we promised to keep a good Con­science towards God, and did in the pre­sence of God and Angels renounce the De­vil, the World, and the Flesh, with all their pomps, vanities, and lusts? and so not onely subscribe to the truth, but un­dertake the practice of those necessary Do­ctrines? And if we should now compare the Lives of Men amongst us, their bare­fac'd and open Profaneness, their daring Atheisme and Blasphemy, their Oaths and Curses, their Luxuries and Excesses, their Wantonness and Impurities, their Variance and Wrath, their Contentions and Defian­ces, their Bloodshed and Duels, their Impla­cableness and Revenge, their inordinate love of the profits and pleasure of the World more than of God, their utter unacquain­tance with the Yoke of Christ, and the narrow way that leadeth unto Life; if, [Page 11] I say, we should lay together Christ's Laws, and our Lives, our most solemn Vow, and our most perfidious violations of it, might we not most confidently conclude, aut haec non est Lex Christi, aut nos non sumus Christiani? Either this is not Christianity, or we are not Christians? and so Tertullian, Iustin Martyr, and other Antients are bold to affirm of such men, That they are not Christians. Ioannes Picus Mirandula professed, That he had an amazement upon him, when he se­riously considered the Studies, or rather Follies of Men: For, saith he, a Madness it is for Men not to believe the Gospel; which hath been sealed by the blood of Mar­tyrs, published by the preaching of Apostles, confirmed by Miracles, attested by the World, confessed by Devils: Sed longe major insania, si de Evangelii veritate non dubitas, vi­vere tamen quasi de ejus falsitate non dubitares. But a farr greater Madness it is, if not doubting of the truth of the Gospel, we so live as if we doubted not of the falseness of it. And certainly, they who abuse the Doctrine of the Gospel unto licencious Living, and expose the holy Name of God [Page 12] unto Contempt, by turning his Grace into Lasciviousness, are Christiani nominis probra & Maculae, the stain and dishonour, the blains and ulcers of the Christian▪ Name, no otherwise belonging unto the body of Christ, than dung and excrements to the Natural body If the Lacedemonian in Plu­tarch would often look on his Gray Hairs, that he might be put in minde to do nothing unworthy the honour of them; how much more should we continually minde the dig­nity of our Relation unto God, as his Chil­dren, that we never admit any thing un­becoming the Excellency of so High a Calling.

2ly. Being in danger by the different vicissitudes of divine providence, to be tossed and discomposed with various and unequal Affections, contrary to that stedfastness of Heart which ought alwayes to be in Belie­vers, who have an all-sufficient God to rejoyce in, and a Treasure of exceeding great and precious Promises, (able by Faith and Hope to ballance the Soul against all Secular Fluctuations and Concussions) to take Comfort from, In this Case there­fore [Page 13] it is necessary that our Moderation be known, that we learn, with the Apostle, in every state to be content, to be abased and suffer need without pusillanimity or de­spondency, to abound and be full without arrogance or vain-glory. Faith makes a Rich man rejoyce in that he is made low and humbled, to glory no longer in Grass and Flowers▪ in withering and perishing Con­tents; and it makes the Brother of Low degree to rejoyce in that he is exalted to the hope of Salvation, Jam. 1. 9, 10. When therefore, with David, we finde one while our Moun­tain strong, and presently we are moved, Psal. 36. 6. when one day, with Ionah, we re­joyce in our Gourd, and another day are as angry because it is withered; then we must labour for this [...], this pacateness and serenity of Soul; like Gold, to keep our na­ture in the fire, like Celestial Bodies, which in all their Motions are regular and steady. Even Heathen men, by the dictates of Rea­son and Philosophy, have arrived at a very noble Constancy and Composednesse of Minde; of one, it is said, That in all Com­panies, Times, I and Places, suos semper [Page 14] Mores retinuit, he never departed nor varied from himself; of another, that he was ne­ver observed either to laugh or weep; of a­nother, that he was of so equal a Temper, that in his Youth, he had the wisedom of an Old Man, and in his Age the valour of a Young man; and of that excellent Empe­ror Marcus Antoninus it is observed by Dion, [...], that he was ever like himself, never given to change. How much more should Christians, who have an unchangeable God to take care of them, a Kingdom which cannot be shaken provided for them, Promises which are all yea and Amen, and an Hope which is sure and sted­fast set before them, retain a minde like the Rock on which they are built, fixed and inconcussible. Such was the blessed Apo­stle, as dying, and yet alive; as chastened, and yet not killed; as sorrowfull, yet alwayes rejoycing; as having nothing, and yet posses­sing all things: and such he would have us all to be, stedfast and unmoveable, 1 Cor. 15. 58. not soon shaken in minde, 2 Thess. 2. 2. but holding our Confidence, and the rejoycing of our Hope firm unto the end, Heb. 3. 6.

[Page 15] 3. Being, by the Condition of our Chri­stianity, to expect manifold Afflictions and Injuries in the World; Here also it is ne­cessary, that our Moderation be known; Mo­deration of Patience, in bearing them; of Candor, in interpreting them; and of Le­nity and meekness, in forgiving them.

1. Moderation of Patience in bearing them, having our Eye more fixed on the hand of God ordering, than on the hand of Man infflicting them; being more taken up with the Hope of Future Good, than with the Sense of Present Evil; looking rather with Comfort on the need we have of them, 1 Pet. 1. 16. on the fruit we have from them, Heb. 12. 10. on the Recompence of the Reward which will follow them, Heb. 11. 25, 26. Rom. 8. 17, 18. on the love of God, which will support us under them, Heb. 12. 6. on our Communion in them with Christ, for whose sake we suffer them, 1 Pet. 4. 13. on the End of the Lord, who is ever pittifull and of tender mercy to us, in them, Iam 5. 11. than on any present weight or pressure we sustain from them. Nullus dolor est de incursione▪ Malorum praesentium quibus fi­ducia [Page 16] est futurorum Bonorum, saith Saint Cy­prian: A Man is never miserable by any thing, which cannot take away God or Salvation from him.

2. Moderation of Candor and Equanimi­ty, putting the best Constructions on them, as the Carpenter's Plain rendreth rugged things smooth, as favourable Glasses report Faces better than they are. A meek Spirit doth not easily take up every Injury, not out of dullness, because it cannot under­stand them; but out of love, which doth not wittingly or hastily suspect Evil, 1 Cor. 13. 5. which covereth all Sinnes, Prov. 10. 12. which teacheth us to shew all meekness to all men, Tit. 3. 2. we are prohibited Socie­ty with some men, 2 Thess. 3. 6. but we are commanded to follow Peace with All, Heb. 12. 14.

3. Moderation of Meekness and Lenity, not resisting of Evill; nor out of a vindictive Spirit, embracing all advantages to avenge our Selves, as if it were an Argument of a low and dejected Soul not to repay Evil with Evil, and bid a defiance and challenge upon every Wrong; directly contrary to [Page 17] the Word of God, which maketh it a man's wisedom and glory to pass over a trans­gression, Prov. 19. 11. and expressly requireth us not to recompence Evil, but to wait on God, Prov. 20. 22. Rom. 12. 17. yea contrary to the noble practice of many magnani­mous Heathens, Epaminondas, Agesilaus, Pom­pey, Caesar, and others, who by their cle­mency and bounty toward Enemies, pro­vided for their own Safety, and made the way easie unto further victories. But we have a more excellent Example to follow, forbearing one another, and forgiving one ano­ther, saith the Apostle, even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye, Col 3. 13. that man can have no assurance of Christs forgiving him, who resolveth to be avenged on his Brother, Matth. 18. 35. He who choseth rather to be a Murtherer, to take away another Mans life, or to throw away his own, than to suffer a Reproach, hath, give me leave to say it, eousque, renounced the Doctrine of Christ, who commandeth us to do good unto those that hate us, and pray for those that de­spitefully use us, Matth 5. 44. as himself did, Luke 23. 34. who being reviled reviled nor [Page 18] again, but was as a Sheep dumbe before the Shearer, as the Prophet speaks. By this noble Moderation we disappoint those that wrong us, quia fructus Laedentis in dolore laesi est, we fence our selves against the harm which an Injury would do us, as a Canon bullet is deaded by a soft Mudd wall, and the force of a Sword by a pack of Wooll. He that is slow to anger appeaseth strife, Prov. 15. 18. We melt and overcome our Ene­mie, and heap coals of fire on his head, Rom. 12. 20. But above all we honour God, to whom alone Vengeance belongeth, we adorn the Gospel, and evidence our selves to be the Disciples of Christ.

4. Being subject, by the dictates of overmuch Self-love, to assert with rigour our own Right and Interest, in this Case also the Precept is necessary, Let your Moderation be known; rather remit of your own Due, than by too earnest an exacting of it, to grieve your Brother, or to discredit your Professi­on; Abraham did so, though the nobler Person, yet in order unto Peace and Honor, that their Dissentions might not expose Religion unto reproach amongst the Cana­anites, [Page 19] he gave unto Lot the praeoption of what part of the Land he would live in, Gen. 13. 9. It was as free for the Apostle to have taken the Rewards of his Ministry of the Corinthians as of other Churches, yet he purposely refused to use that power, that he might not hinder the Gospel, nor give occasion of glorying against him unto those that sought it, 1 Cor. 9. 12, 14, 15. 2 Cor. 1 [...]. 8, 12 Our Saviour, though he might have in­sisted on the dignity of his Person, as the Sonne of God, from paying Tribute, yet to avoid offence he did Cedere de Iure, and gave order about the payment of it, Matth. 17. 24, 25, 26. No doubt is to be made, but that it is free for Christians to recover their Just Rights by a legal tryal, yet when the Corinthians sued one another before Un­believers, and thereby exposed the Gospel unto Contempt, the Apostle reproveth them that they did not rather take wrong, and suffer themselves to be defrauded; the Evil be­ing farr less for them to suffer wrong, than for the Gospel to suffer reproach, 1 Cor. 6. 5, 6, 7. Thus doth this most amiable Grace whereby we behave our Selves towards all [Page 20] Men with all Equity, Facility, Equanimity, and Suavity of Conversation, attempering the severity of other Vertues with the Law of Love, exceedingly conduce to the honour of God, and credit of the Gospel, yea to our own safety and interest; for as a Tempest doth not break the Corn which yields unto it, but the Oaks which withstand it, nor Thunder so easily hurt Shrubs as Cedars, So the wrath and prejudice of Adversaries is exceeding­ly mitigated and abated by the Humility, Moderation and Meeknesse of those that suffer them.

Lastly. Being subject to the same common Passions and Infirmities with other Men, and thereupon lyable to be transported into Excess in the use either of our Knowledge, Power or Liberty; here also comes in the seasonable use of this excellent Precept, Let your Moderation be known. Moderation of Iudgement, Moderation of Power, and Moderation of Passions.

1. Moderation of Iudgement, that we suffer not our Knowledge to puff us up, but temper it as the Apostle directeth us with Charity, and use it unto Edification, 1 Cor. 8. [Page 21] 1. I do not hereby understand Moderation in the measure or degrees of our Knowledge, as if we should content our Selves with a Mediocrity, and be, at our own choyse, wil­lingly Ignorant of any part of God's reveal­ed will, as we please our selves; for we are required to grow in Knowledge, 2 Pet. 3. 18. and the Word of Christ must dwell in us richly, Col 3. 16. Nor do I understand a Moderation of Indifferency, as if it mat­ter'd not what Judgement we were of, but had, as the Priscilianists claimed, a Liberty at pleasure to depart from the Rule of Di­vine Truth in Outward Profession, to serve a present Interest; for we are to buy the Truth, and not to sell it; We can do nothing a­gainst the Truth, but for it; We are to hold fast the Faithfull Word, Tit. 1. 9. and having proved all things, to hold fast that which is good, 1 Thess. 5. 21. But by a Moderation in Judgement, I understand these three Things:

1. A Moderation of Sobriety, not to break in and gaze upon hidden and secret things, as the men of Bethshemesh into the Ark, 1 Sam. 6. 19. nor to weary our Selves about [Page 22] Questions, as the Apostle speaks, which are unprofitable and vain, Tit. 3. 9. such as that of Peter, What shall this Man do? John 21. 21. and that of the Apostles, Wilt thou now restore the Kingdom unto Israel? Acts 1. 6. But to be wise unto Sobriety, Rom. 12. 3. and to content our Selves with things Re­vealed, and leave Secret things unto God, Deut. 29. 29. in quem sic Cred [...]mus, saith Saint Austin, ut aliqua non aperiri etiam pul­santibus nullo modo adversus eum murmurare debeamus. And therefore that good Father Gave no other Answer to a curious Questi­on, than this modest one, Nescio quod Ne­scio, as Judging an humble Ignorance much better than a proud Curiosity.

2. A Moderation of Humility and Modesty, not to be so opinionative or tenacious of our own private, meerly disputable and pro­blematical Conceptions, wholly unnecessa­ry to Faith, Worship, or Obedience, as out of a love of them, not onely to undervalue and despise the as probable and sober Judgements of other Men, but by an im­prudent and unadvised publishing of them, to obtrude them with over confidence on [Page 23] the belief of others, and haply thereby to cause a great disturbance in the Church of God, directly contrary to the Counsel of the Apostle, Hast thou Faith, have it to thy self before God, Rom. 14. 22. It is not fit that the peace of the Church should be en­dangered by the bold attempts of every da­ring Pen. Of this sort was that unhappy Controversie in the dayes of Pope Victor, between the Roman and Asiatick Churches, touching the time of Easter, who though for­mer Bishops of Rome had, notwithstanding the different observations in that Case, held intimate fellowship with the Asian Bishops, did out of excess of Passion, [...], as Socrates expresseth it, Excommunicate all the Asian Churches, and made a dolefull disturbance in the Church of Christ; upon which occasion, the forenamed Historian hath a grave Discourse, to shew how seve­ral Churches did differ from one another in Matters Ritual, and yet retained firm Unity and Communion still.

3. Moderation of Charity, when in such things wherein a latitude and mutual Ten­dernesse may be allowed, we choose ra­ther, [Page 24] according to the Doctrine of the A­postle, not to offend our weak Brethren, than unseasonably to insist on our own Knowledge and Liberty. And truly as it is an Honour which Learned men owe unto one another, to allow a liberty of Dissent in Matters of mere opinion, Salvâ compage Fidei, Salvo vinculo Charitatis, Salvâ pace Ecclesiae, (for those three, Faith, Love, and Peace, are still to be preserved:) so it is a Charity which Good men owe unto one another, upon the same Salvo's, to bear with the Infirmities of each other, not to judge, or despise, or set at nought our Brethren, as useless and inconsiderable Per­sons; but whom God is pleased to receive into His Favour, not to cast them out of Ours. This Latitude and Moderation of Judgement, some Learned men have taken the freedom to extend even to the Case of Subscriptions by Law required; the learn­ed For the Church of Eng­land I am persuaded that the con [...]ia [...]t Do­ctrine of it is so pure and or­thodox, that whosoever believes it, and lives according to it, undoubtedly he shall be saved; and that there is no error in it which may ne [...]e sitate or warrant any man to disturb the Peace, or re­nounce the Communion of it This, in my opinion, is all intended by Subscription; and thus much if you conceive me not ready to subscribe, your Charity I assure you is much mistaken. In the Preface, Sect. 40.Author of the Book called An Answer to Charity maintained, and the late learned [Page 25] We do not suf­fer any man to reject the 39 Articles of the Church of Eng­land at his plea­sure▪ yet neither do we look up­on them as Es­sentials of sa­ving Faith, or Legacies of Christ and his Apostles: but in a mean, as pious Opinions, fitted for the preservation of Unity. Neither do we oblige any man to believe them, but only not to contradict them. In the Trea­tise called, Schisme guarded and beaten back upon the right Owners, &c. Sect. 1. cap. 11. pag. 190. See also his Iust Vindication of the Church of England, Cap. 6. p. 156. Primate of Armagh Archbishop Bramhall I shall not take upon me to affix any private sense of mine upon Publick Laws, or ever judge it desirable, that the Doctrine of the Church of England should have too slack a tye on the Judgement of the Clergy; onely sure I am in Points which are not Fidei but Questionum (as Saint Austin distinguisheth) in Matters of an inferiour nature, wherein no Man can rationally hold himself bound to trouble or discompose the Mindes of the People, or the Order and Peace of the Church, by an unnecessary publishing of his own private Perswasion, so that his O­pinion and the Churches Quiet may be very well consistent together, Learned men have ever allowed this latitude unto one another.

2. Moderation of Power, by gentle and winning wayes, to reform the Manners, allay the Distempers, and conquer the fro­wardness of inconstant and discontented Mindes; by placide and leasurely steps and degrees to get the possession of them, and to model and compose them unto an Equal [Page 26] temper. This was the Counsel of the Old men, Speak good unto them and they will be thy Servants for ever, 1 Reg. 12. 7. as Mode­ration is by grave and prudent men obser­ved to be the preservative of Power; So Cato in Plutarch, and Iulius Caesar in that excel­lent Oration which he made unto the Se­nate in Dion: so certainly it is a special means for the Right administration of it. Therefore the Lord chose Moses the meekest man alive for the Government of his Pecu­liar people, Num. 12. 3. and of Christ the Prince of Peace it is said, that he would not break the bruised reed, nor quench the smoaking flax, Matth. 12. 20. as he saith of himself, Learn of me for I am meek and lowly, Matth. 11. 29. and the Apostle beseecheth the Co­rinthians by the Meekness and Gentleness of Christ, 2 Cor. 10. 1. so the same Apostle expresseth his tenderness towards the Church, by the affections sometimes of a Father, 1 Cor. 4. 15. Sometimes of a Mother, Gal. 4. 19. Sometimes of a Nurse, 1 Thess. 2. 7. He calleth upon Timothy, In meekness to instruct those that oppose themselves, because the Ser­vant of the Lord must be Gentle to all men, 2 [Page 27] Tim. 2. 24, 25. and upon Titus, to shew all Meekness to all men, Tit. 3. 2. Rulers are called Healers, Isai. 3. 7. and a Physician, saith Plutarch, will if it may be cure the Disease of his Patient rather by Sleep and Diet, than by strong Purges. Grave Writers have observed, that even in the avenging of con­quer'd Enemies Moderation is advantagi­ous to the Conqueror. He, saith Thucydi­des, who is kinde to an Enemy provideth for his own Safety; and surely it cannot but be usefull for Healing Distempers, amongst a long dilacerated and discomposed People, ut quod Belli calamitas introduxit, hoc Pacis Lenitas sopiret, to use the words of Iustinian the Emperor. A course observed with rare clemency by our most Meek and Gracious Soveraign in the Act of General Pardon and Indempnity towards his People.

I do often sadly recount with my self the wofull distractions which are in this once flou­rishing Church, occasion'd by the wantonness of some, and subtilty of others, and can scarce arrive at any other Expedient than Abra­hams Iehovah Iireh, Gen. 22. 14. I do not need at all, neither shall I at all presume [Page 28] to bespeak the Reverend Governors of the Church in this Case of Moderation, in any other way than the Apostle doth the Thessa­lonians in the Case of Brotherly▪ Love. As touching Moderation ye need not that I write unto you, for you your selves are taught of God to shew all meekness to all men, and to restore those that are overtaken in a fault with the spi­rit of Meekness, and indeed you do it. One thing I assure my self would greatly conduce to the Healing of our Divisions, and re­ducing of many unto the Communion of the Church who have departed from it, If all the other Ministers of the Gospel in their respective Places would every where preach the Word with that Soundness, Evidence, and Authority, and so commend themselves to every man's Conscience in the sight of God, reproving Sinne not with Passion, Wrath, and Animosity, but with the Spirit of Meekness, and by the Majesty and Au­thority of the Word; (which alone can convince and awe the Conscience) would lead such holy, peaceable, and inoffensive Lives, would treat all men with that pru­dence, meekness, and winning Converse, [Page 29] that all who see and hear them may know that God is in them of a truth, that they do indeed love the Peoples Souls, and so faithfully discharge their Trust, as those that do in good earnest resolve to save themselves and those that hear them. Thus are all the Interests of a Christian Church by all the Officers therein, to be managed and preserved with that wisedom which is from above, which Saint Iames tells us, is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, easie to be en­treated, full of mercy and good works, with­out partiality, and without hypocrisie, whereby the fruit of Righteousness is sowen in peace of them that seek Peace.

3. Moderation of Passion, when we suf­fer not our Passions to anticipate right Rea­son, or run beyond the dictates of Practi­cal judgement, when they flye not out be­yond their due measure, nor transport us unto any undecency or excess, when they do not like a troubled Sea cast up mire and dirt; but are like the shaking of clean Water in a Christal Glass, which onely troubleth it, but doth not defile it. For this purpose we must keep sanctified Reason alwayes in [Page 30] the Throne; The higher and more heaven­ly the Soul is, the more sedate and calm it will be, Inferiora fulminant, Pacem Summa tenent. We must get the Heart ballanced with such Graces as may in special manner establish it against perturbation of Passion, with clearness of Reason, serenity of Judg­ment, strength of Wisedom, sobriety and gentleness of Spirit, humility and lowly­ness of Minde, (for ever the more Proud, the more Passionate) with Self-denial; for all Impotency of Affections is rooted in an inordinate Self-love; This will transport a man to furious Anger, to insatiable de­sires to excessive Delights, to discruciating Fears, to impatient Hopes, to tormenting Sorrows, to gnawing Emulations, to over­whelming Despairs. The Heart, saith the Apostle, is established by Grace, Heb. 13. 9.

We have thus largely considered the Du­ty here required, which the Apostle would further have to be such a Moderation as be­cometh them as Christians. And therefore the Precept is closed in on all sides of the Text with certain peculiarities of Christians, Rejoycing in the Lord, Verse 4. And [Page 31] what can befall a man to shake and dis­compose his Heart, who hath a Lord al­wayes to rejoyce in? nearness of that Lord, the Lord is at hand; And what is there in all the World, the beauty whereof can be­witch with Inordinate Love, the evil where­of can tempt to Immoderate Fears the Heart which can by Faith see Christ coming quickly with a farr more exceeding and abun­dant weight of glory? An access in Prayer and Supplication unto the Throne of Grace, v. 6. And what Evils can disquiet the Heart of that Man with anxious, excessive, and dis­cruciating Cares, who hath the bosome of a Father in Heaven to powre out his Requests into? Lastly, the peace of God which passeth all understanding; and what Perturbations are able to storm such a Soul as is garrison'd with Divine peace? There is a mere philo­sophical Moderation, quae mimice affectat veri­tatem, as Tertullian speaks. But Christian Moderation is that which is founded in the Law of Christ; which requireth us not to resist Evil, to love our Enemies, to Bless them that Curse us, to do Good unto those that Hate us, to recompence to no man Evil for Evil, to [Page 32] weep as though we wept not, and to rejoyce as though we rejoyced not. It is founded in the love of Christ, the sense and comfort where­of ballanceth the Soul against the assault of any other Perturbations. It is Regulated by the Example of Christ, of whom we learn to be meek and lowly, to forbear and to forgive, who when he was reviled reviled not again, who prayed for his Persecutors, and saved them by that Blood which their own hands had shed. It is wrought by the spirit of Christ, the fruits whereof are Love, Ioy, Peace, Long-suffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Meekness, as the Apostle speaks. It is ordered to the glory of Christ, and honour of Christianity, when by our Moderation we adorn the Do­ctrine of God our Saviour, being blameless, and harmless, the Sons of God without rebuke, shining as Lights in the World.

For this End it is that the Apostle requi­reth this Moderation of theirs to be known, not as the Philosophers and Heathen shew­ed their Vertues for Vain-glory, Ostentati­on, and Interest, as Gloriae Animalia, & Negociatores Famae, as Tertullian calls them: But that others seeing our good Works may glo­rifie [Page 33] God in the day of Visitation; for if they who profess Obedience to the Rule of Christ in the Gospel live dissonantly from the Pre­scripts of that Rule, they do not onely harden wicked men in their Sinnes, but ex­pose the name of God and his Doctrine unto Reproach, as the Apostle teacheth, Rom. 2. 23, 24. 1 Tim. 6. 1. as Nathan told David, that by his Sinne he had caused the Enemies▪ of God to blaspheme, 2 Sam. 12. 14. So per­verse and illogical is Malice, as to charge those Sinnes, which are aberrations from the Doctrine of Christianity, upon the Doctrine it self, as genuine Products and Consequen­ces thereof. The Moralist hath observed, that the antient Grecians called a Man [...], that is, Light, teaching him so to live as to be a Light unto others. Sure I am the Apostle hath told us, that though we were by nature Darkness, yet we are Light in the Lord, and therefore should walk as Children of Light, and shine as Lights in the World, Eph. 5. 8. Phil. 2. [...]5.

Lastly. As it must be known, so univer­sally known unto All Men; It must be with­out Hypocrisie, not attempered to Interests [Page 34] and Designs, like the Devotion of the Phari­ses, who for a pretence made long Prayers; like the Civilities of Absolom and Otho, of whom the Historian saith, That he did Adorare vulgum, jacere oscula, & omnia serviliter pro Dominatione. It must be without partiality, not varied or diversified according to the diffe­rences of Persons with whom we have to do. We Christians, saith Tertullian, Nullum Bo­num sub exceptione Personarum administramus. It must be known to our Brethren, that they may be edified; it must be known to our Ene­mies, that their Prejudices may be removed, their Mouths stopped, their Hostilities aba­ted, and their Hearts mollified and perswa­ded to entertain more just and honourable thoughts of those Precepts of the Gospel by which our Conversations are directed.

Many and weighty are the Arguments which might be used to perswade all sober, pious and prudent Christians unto the pra­ctise of this most excellent Grace. They may be drawn from Our great Exemplar and Pattern, whom though we finde once with a Curse against a barren Figg-tree, once with a Scourge against Prophaners of his Fa­thers [Page 35] House, once with Woes against ma­licious and incorrigible Scribes and Phari­ses; yet generally All his Sermons were Blessings, all his Miracles Mercies, all his Conversation meek, lowly, humble, gentle, not suited so much to the greatness and dig­nity of his Divine Person, as to the oeco­nomy of his Office, wherein he made him­self of no reputation, but took upon him the form of a Servant.

From a principal Character of a Disciple of Christ, Humility and Self-denial, which teacheth us not onely to moderate, but to abandon our own Judgements, Wills, Pas­sions, Interests, when ever they stand in Competition with the Glory of Christ, and welfare of his Church, which maketh the same minde be in us which was in Christ Iesus, to look not every man on his own things, but every man on the things of others.

From the Credit and Honour of Christi­anity, which is greatly beautified by the meekness and moderation of those that profess it. Hereby we walk worthy of our Calling, or as those who make it their work to shew forth the worth and dignity of the [Page 36] Christian Profession, when we walk in low­lyness, meekness, long-suffering, unity, and love, Eph. 4. 1, 2, 3. as the splendour of a Prin­ces Court is set forth by the Robes and fine Rayments of their Servants, Matth. 11. 8. 2 Sam. 13. 18. So the Servants of Christ shew forth the Honour and Excellency of their Lord, by being cloathed with Humility, 1 Pet 5. 5: and decked with the Ornament of a meek and quiet Spirit, 1 Pet. 3. 4.

From the Breaches, Divisions, and Dis­composures which are at any time in the Church or State; towards the Healing of which Distempers Moderation, Meekness, and Humility, do exceedingly conduce; though sharp things are used to search wounds, yet Balm and Lenitives are the Medicines that heal them; as Morter, a soft thing, is used to knit and binde other things toge­ther. It is observed by Socrates and Nice­phorus of Proclus Patriarch of Constantinople, that being a Man of singular lenity and meekness, he did thereby preserve intire the Dignity of the Church, and by his special prudence healed a very great Divisi­on in the Church, bringing back unto the [Page 37] Communion thereof those who had depart­ed from it.

From the various vicissitudes and incon­stancies of Human Events, whereby many times it cometh to pass, that things which for the present are judged very needfull and profitable, prove inconvenient and dange­rous for the future, as Polybius hath obser­ved. Hereby we may in all Conditions be taught Moderation, not to faint or be de­jected in the day of Adversity, because God can raise us again; nor to swell or wax Impotent with Prosperity▪ because God can as easily depress us. It was a wise Speech of the Lacedemonian Ambassadours unto the Athenians in Thucydides; That they who have had many alternations and vicis­situdes of Good and Evil, cannot but deem it Equal to be [...], diffident and moderate in their Prosperity; as Coenus the Macedonian said unto Alexander, That nothing did better become him, than [...], as Arrian tells us. And so on the other hand, this Grace of Moderation doth so poize and ballance the heart with Christian Constancy and Cou­rage, [Page 38] that it is not easily tossed or over­turned by any Tempest; but, as they say of the Palm tree, beareth up above all the difficulties that would depresse it; as good Iehosaphat, when he was distressed with a great multitude of Adversaries, said in his Prayer to God; We have no might against this great Company that cometh against us, nei­ther know we what to do; but our eyes are upon thee, 2 Chron▪ 20. 12.

Lastly▪ From the Nearness of Christ, which is the Apostles Argument in the Text, The Lord is at hand. Prope ad Auxi­lium, Near to help us, The Lord is nigh unto all that call upon him, Psal. 145. 18. Deut. 4. 7. We have no sufficiency of our selves to improve any Talent, to manage any Con­dition, to use our Knowledge or Liberty, our Power or Prosperity to the Honour of God, or Service of his Church, no power to rejoyce in Adversity, to forgive Injury, to correct the exorbitancy of any inordinate and irregular Passion. Only we have a Lord Near unto us, his Eye upon us to see our Wants, his Ear open to hear our Desires, his Grace present to assist our Duties, his [Page 39] Comforts at hand to support our Hearts, his Power and Providence continually ready to protect our Persons, to vindicate our In­nocence, to allay the wrath, and rebuke the attempts of any that would harm us. This is one Principal cause of all our Impatiency and Perturbation, that we are so soon shaken and discomposed with every Temp­tation, so soon posed with every Difficulty, that we do soon despond under every Storm, Because we do not with an Eye of Faith look up unto God as one that Careth for us, and is ever near at hand as a Sun and a Shield, a Sanctuary and an Hiding Place to secure us against all our Fears.

Prope ad judicium, Near to judge us, to take a Full and Impartiall Review of all that is done by us, and accordingly to Re­compence either Rest or Trouble, as the A­postle speaks. This is a Fundamentall do­ctrine which we all avow as an Article of the Christian Faith. Act. 17. 13. Rom. 14. 10. 2. Cor 5. 10. That Christ shall Come as the Ordained Officer to whom all Judgement is Committed, in flaming Fire, attended with all the Holy Angels; Matth. 25. 31▪ 2. Thess. [Page 40] 1. 7, 8. Iud. 10. 14, 15. to give a Righteous, an Impartiall, and finall Doom and State unto the Everlasting Condition of all men. Before whose most dreadfull Tribunal we must all appear, Stripp'd of all our Wealth, Honors, Dignities, Retinues, accompa­nied with nothing but our Consciences, and our Works, whether good or Evill, to beare witness of us, and there receive a propor­tionable Sentence to the things which we have done: Holy men a Sentence of Absolu­tion and Mercy, for the manifestation of Gods glorious Grace, when he shall come to be Magnified in his Saints, and admired in all those that believe. Wicked men a Sen­tence of Rejection and Everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, for the manife­station of his glorious Power and Justice, when all the Devils in Hell and Powers of Darkness shall be brought all together, and be trodden down under his Feet, when all the low and narrow Interests of Secular wealth, pleasures, power and greatness which short­sighted men so passionately dote upon, and so eagerly pursue, shall to their Everlasting disappointment be swallowed up in the ge­neral [Page 41] Conflagration and so vanish for ever. When the poor and pittiful Artifices, where­by angry Mortalls do countermine and sup­plant one another, and mutually project each others vexations, shall to the confusi­on of the Contrivers be detected and deri­ded. In a word, when nothing that ever we have done, shall afford benefit or comfort to us, any further then as it was with a single and upright aime directed to the Glo­ry of God, and mannaged by the Law of Love.

Certainly this is one principal Reason of all Immoderation amongst Men, of De­spondence in Adversity, of Insolence in Pro­sperity, of Excess in Delights, of Pertur­bation in Passions, of vindictive Retaliati­ons; one principal Reason why they do not with a single Eye and an unbiassed Heart mannage all their Actions and De­signes to the Glory of God, the Credit of the Gospel, the Interest of Christianity, the Edification and Salvation of the Souls of Men, but often suffer weak Passions, Pre­judices, Interests to State, model and over­rule their Designes; the Reason I say of all [Page 42] is, Because the Terror of the Lord hath not perswaded them, because they are not suf­ficiently awed with the All-seeing Eye, and near approach of the Lord of Glory, be­fore whom all their wayes are naked, with whom all their Sinnes are laid up in store, and sealed amongst his Treasures. Let us there­fore seriously resolve to regulate all our Acti­ons by our Great Accompt. To say with Iob, What shall I do when God riseth up, and when he visiteth what shall I answer him? Job 31. 14. He hath entrusted me with many Talents, with a Rich Treasure of Power and Interest, of Wisedom and Ho­nour, of Wealth and Learning, he hath deposited with me the Custody of his Eter­nal Gospel, the Grand Interests of the Church of Christ, and of the Precious Souls which he redeemed with his own Blood. God forbid that I should ever suffer any Immoderate Passions, or Prejudices, or Partialities, or low and narrow Inte­rests of mine own so farr to transport me, as that I should betray so great a Trust, and provoke the wrath of so Holy and Just a Judge. God enable me with that Equani­mity [Page 43] and Singleness of Heart, without Hypocrisie, and without Partiality, with a direct Eye to the Glory of God, the Kingdom of Christ, the Edification and Peace of his Church, the Flourishing of his Gospel, and the Prosperity of the Souls of his People; so to discharge eve­ry Trust reposed in me, as that I may be able to give up mine Accompts with Joy, and when the Chief Shepheard shall ap­pear, I may lift up my Head in the day of Redemption, and receive a Crown of Glory which fadeth not away.

Thus let your Moderation be known unto All men, because the Lord is at hand in his future approaching Iudgements.. But hath not the Lord been at hand, near us, in the middest of us already by many strange in­termingled Providences, by a series of Glori­ous Mercies, and a vicissitude of dreadfull Judgments; as if he would both wayes try, whether by the one we would be led unto Repentance, or by the other learn Righteous­ness? Is it a small Mercy, that we have had the Gospel of Salvation in the purity of the Reformed Religion for so long a time in this [Page 44] Land, having brought▪ forth so little Fruit in answer to the Light and Grace which hath been therein revealed unto us? I have read an Observation in one of the Homilies of our Church (if my memory do not greatly faile me) That we shall not often finde, that a Nation which hath had the Gospel in purity, and not brought forth the Fruits thereof, hath enjoyed it much longer than 100 years. I do not mention this as a sad Presage, for I dare not set bounds to the infinite Mercy and Patience of God, his Judgements are unsearchable, and his Wayes past finding out; the secret things belong unto him, and things revealed to us and our Children; It is not for us to know the Times or the Seasons, which the Father hath put in his own Power: onely I desire, by this sad Ob­servation, to awaken both my self and you timely to consider the things that do belong un­to our Peace, before they be hidden from our Eyes; for this is a sober and certain Truth, that the Sins of a Church, as the Fruits of a well-ordered Garden, do ripen much faster than those of a Wilderness; and therefore [Page 45] the Prophet Amos calleth them by the name of Summer Fruit, Amos 8. 2. The Prophet Ieremiah compareth the Judgements threat­ned against them unto the Rod of an Almond-tree, Jer. 1. 11. which shooteth forth her Blossoms before other Trees. And therefore when we have reason to fear that God will hasten Iudgements, we have great reason to resolve with holy David, to make hast and not to delay to keep his Commandements.

Again, was it not a great and eminent Mercy, when God commanded up into the Scabbard the Sword of violent men, swell'd into Pride and Arrogance, with their many Successes, when he infatuated their Coun­sells, shattered and dissipated their Under­takings, and swallowed them up in the confusion of their own Consultations?

Was it not a glorious and wonderfull Mercy, that after a long and bitter Banish­ment the Lord brought back our dread So­veraign in the Chariots of Aminadab, upon the wings of Loyalty and Love unto his Royal Throne, without the effusion of one drop of Blood, and thereby made way for a stable and durable Settlement both of [Page 46] Church and State? To say nothing of the other ordinary Mercies, of flourishing of Trade, and plenty of Provisions, where­with this Nation hath been for a long time blessed: And may it not be said of us as it was of Hezekiah, that we have not rendered again according to the Benefits done unto us? but have surfeited and played the Wantons with these great Mercies; so that the Lord hath been provoked to lift up his Hand in many sore and dismal Judgements against us?

For after that Thousands and Ten Thousands had fallen by the Sword of an unnaturall War in the High Places of the Field, he hath stirred up Potent Adversa­ries abroad against us, though blessed be his Name we have not only hitherto been delivered from their Fury, but by signall Successes have had good reason to hope that the Lord hath owned our Righteous Cause.

Yet for all this, his Anger is not turned a­way, but his Hand is stretched out still; for he hath in these two years last past emptied this City and Nation in very many parts [Page 47] thereof, as we may I presume with good Reason compute, above an Hundred Thou­sand of her Inhabitants, by the fury of a raging and contagious Pestilence, the like whereunto possibly cannot be paralell'd for some Hundred of years. And yet after all this, his Anger hath not been turned away, but his Hand is streched out still. He hath like­wise contended by Fire, and by the late direfull Conflagration, hath laid in Ashes the glorious Metropolis of this Nation, hath made desolate almost all her goodly Palaces, and laid waste almost all the Sanctuaries of God therein. Thus the Lord hath come with Fire, and with his Chariots like a whirle­wind, to render his Anger with fury, and his Rebuke with flames of Fire; for by Fire and by Sword hath he pleaded with us, and the Slain of the Lord have been many.

We see how the Lord hath been near us both in wayes of Mercy and of Judgement, as if he would say of us as of Ephraim, Is Ephraim my dear Son? is he a pleasant Child? for since I speak against him I do earnestly remem­ber him still, therefore my Bowels are troubled for him. I will surely have mercy upon him, [Page 46] [...] [Page 47] [...] [Page 48] saith the Lord. And again, How shall I give thee up Ephraim, How shall I deliver thee Israel? How shall I make thee as Admah? How shall I set thee as Zeboim? Mine heart is turned within me, my Repentings are kindled together. I will not execute the fiercenes of mine Anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim, for I am God and not Man, &c. Jer. 31. 20. Hos. 11. 8, 9.

I shall Limit the Inference from all this to the first Acception, which I gave of the Ori­ginal Word in the text, namely, to teach us from hence to walk as becometh the dignity of our High Calling, according to that Ex­hortation of the Apostle, Let your Conver­sation be as becometh the Gospel of Christ. For every thing of the Gospel doth call upon us for Holyness of Life, the Author of it a Pat­tern of Holyness, He that saith he abideth in him, must walk even as he walked, 1. Ioh. 2. 6. The End of it a design of Holyness, That we being delivered out of the hand of our Enemies, might serve him without fear in Holyness and Righteousness before him all the dayes of our life The Doctrine of it a Mystery of Godliness, 1. Tim. 2. 16. There is not an Article of the Creed which hath not [Page 49] Holyness a Consequent of it. The Laws of it Prescripts of Holiness, Be ye perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect, Matth. 5. 48. The Cardinall Graces of it Faith, Love, and Hope, all Principles of Holyness, Faith Purifieth the Heart and worketh by Love, Act. 15. 9. Gal. 5. 6. Love is the fulfilling of the Law, Rom. 13. 10. Herein is Love if we keep his Commandements, 1 Joh. 5. 3. And e­very one that hath this Hope in him purifieth himself even as he is pure, 1 Joh. 3. 3. No man can rationally hope to be like unto Christ in Glory hereafter, who resolves to be unlike unto him in Grace and Holyness here; for Glory is the Consummation and Reward of Grace. All the precious Pro­mises of the Gospel invite unto Holy­ness, Having these Promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse our Selves from all filthiness of Flesh and Spirit, perfecting Holyness in the fear of God, 2 Cor. 7. 1. Lastly, the dreadfull Threatnings of the Gospel drive unto Holyness; since we know, that without Holyness no Man shall see the Lord, Heb. 12. 14. and that he will come in flaming Fire to take vengeance on those that know not God, and that [Page 50] obey not the Gospel of our Lord Iesus Christ, 2 Thess. 1. 8. And therefore as ever we ex­pect to enjoy the Benefits of the Gospel, (without the which we are of all Creatures the most miserable) we must shew forth the Efficacy and Power of the Grace of the Gospel in our Hearts and Lives, which teacheth us to deny Vngodlyness and Worldly Lusts, and to Live Soberly, Righteously, and Godly in this Present World, Tit. 2. 11, 12. which that we may all do, The God of Peace, who brought again from the Dead the Lord Jesus, the Great Shepheard of the Sheep, through the Blood of the Everlasting Co­venant, make us perfect in every Good Work to do his Will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be Glory for Ever and Ever. Amen.


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