OR, Magistrates Deity, ATTENDED WITH Mortality & Misery: AFFIRMED & CONFIRMED BEFORE THE Learned and Religious JUDGE HALES, AT THE Assize holden at Maidstone, July 7. 1657.


By HENRY SYMONS, M. A. and Minister of the Gospel at Southfleet in KENT.

Psal. 89. 48.

What man is he that liveth, and shall not see death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand of the grave? Selah.

Non multum curandum est eis qui necessario morituri sunt, quid accidet ut moriantur: sed moriendo quo ire coguntur. Aug. de Civ. Dei. lib. 1. cap. 11.

London, Printed by J. Hayes, and are to be sold by H. Crips at his Shop in Popes-head alley. 1658.

To the HONOURABLE JOHN KELSY, Major General of the County of Kent, AND Governour of Dover Castle, His much esteemed FRIEND.


IT was the businesse of my Sermon to defend Magistrates, and I hope it will be the businesse of Magi­strates to defend my Sermon: I know full well it shall stand in a worse place then the man in the Zodiack, many daggers will be thrust into every part, and therefore I humbly fly unto your Honour for Patronage and Protection: And if you demand, Quo jure? I having no in­terest in you, Intimacy with you, Dependance upon [Page] you, Expectation from you, I must answer upon the best Title, viz. Detur digniori, which you are, both as a publique Magistrate, and as a private Christian. I shall not bring this Sun of Truth to one who hath sore eyes and cannot abide the light, nor present this glasse to a painted or spotted face which will not endure the sight; Your Eagle eyes will bear these bright beams, your Angels face can endure this clear and Crystall glasse which shews the whole proportion of a Magistrate, a capite ad calcem: Here you have his Head, and that is of Gold, (I have said you are Gods) Here you have his feet, and they are of earth, (you shall die like men.) Many Magistrates like and love to hear of their Deity, but not of their Mortality, much lesse of their eternal Misery; But you are well pleased with all, being not proud of your Deity, nor insensible of your Mortality, nor afraid of your eternal Misery: Were all Magistrates qua­lified with that Mercy and Meeknesse, Humility and Holinesse, Zeal and Severity, they would so mag­nifie and beautifie that Office, that (as the Heathen said of vertue) Omnes in amorem ejus traheret, the work of Ministers would be both uselesse and needlesse as for pressing Duties to, and praising the Dignities of Magistrates; Antalcidas his Quis un­quam vituperavit? would be seasonable. I know also I shall not tender this Present to a rugged and rigid Christian, who can like nothing but what comes from one of his own Church, but your sweet temper is known to all; You do not expresse your self distant from them in your affection, who do expresse them­selves different from you in their opinion; You can [Page] harbour love to their persons in your heart, though you cannot harbour liking of their opinions in your head; a most excellent pattern for all Magistrates, Ministers, and people fearing God, whose great blot and blemish it is, that if they have difference with people in their opinion, they will have distance from them in their affection; Magistrates will not do them justice, Ministers will rail at, and revile them in their publique Pulpits, and Christians will slander them in their private meetings.

—Pudet haec opprobria nobis
Et dici potuisse, & non potuisse, refelli.

My Brethren, these things ought not so to be, Jam. 3. 10. I speak unfeignedly without flattery, had all Magistrates, Ministers, Souldiers, Christi­ans, that Moderation and Discretion to bear one anothers burthens, and so to fulfill the Law of Christ, Gal. 6. 2. as you have, I am confident that both certainly and suddenly would the Jesuite be defeated, the Prophane silenced, the Neuter con­vinced, the Doubtfull resolved, the Godly reconci­led, and all the honest party strengthened, and we should live and love together, as becomes the Pro­fessors of the Gospel. You see (Sir) by what te­nure my Sermon holds, both in Capite and in Corde; as you are a good Magistrate, and a gra­cious Christian, I beseech you do not sue it with a Writ of Ejection, either out of your Protection as a Magistrate, or Affection as a Christian; by grant­ing [Page] which request you shall much oblige him, who esteems it his highest honour to be

Your lowest Servant, HENRY SYMONS.
Psal. 82. 6, 7.‘I have said ye are Gods; and all of you are children of the most High: but ye shall dye like men, and fall like one of the Princes.’

TO spend or spin out time with the needless thred of curious enquiry, Whether this be a Psalm of Asaph, or for Asaph; or whether it were composed in the reign of Jehosaphat, or of David after the death of Saul, would be as vain, as those Cities who spent their time to know in which of them Homer was born: or as they, Who was the Author of that golden sentence, [...]. I am sure this Psalm was calculated for the Meridian of Israel, and may serve for England, or any other Nation in the world. A Psalm of much use, and in much use among the Jews, when their Fab. in loc. Judges rode Circuit, and sate in Judicature.

This Psalm may fitly be stiled and titled, The Judges Charge.

Where you have the Prophet the Crier to call the Court, and the holy Ghost the Judge that gives the Charge: As Judges give their Charge to men, so God gives his Charge to Judges; and as Judges expect men should attend to their Charge, so God expects Judges should attend to his Charge. And indeed this is a pretious and profitable Charge, which might as well be written over our places of publick Judica­ture in letters of gold, as those Verses are in Zant:

Hic locus odit, amat, punit, observat, honorat,
Nequitiam, pacem, crimina, jura, bonos.

It would be profitable to the Judges to have this Psalm sung before them alwaies, before they go to their Judica­tories. Sim. de Muiz.

It is worthy to be learned of all Magistrates, and to be put in all publick places of Judgement. Fab. in loc.

But Vino vendibili—why should I hang out a bush, when the Wine sufficiently commends it self.

In the Psalm are these three parts observable:

  • 1. Ratio, an Introductory reason.
  • 2. Oratio, an Exhortatory oration.
  • 3. Peroratio, a Conclusory praier.

First, An Introductory reason, by way of preamble, to aw and amaze the hearts of Judges; vers. 1. God stands in the Congregation of the mighty: and he is presens and praeses, a God present, yea the Lord President of all your Courts and Counsels: He is Judex, and Vindex, Judge Paramount, who will certainly and severely judge the Judges. If Father Latymer was circumspect what he answered, because he heard a pen scratch behind the hangings, how much more circumspect ought all Judges to be of what they say or do, because there is ever one in the midst of them, that writes down with a pen of a diamond, all their acts, decrees, orders, judgements.

Secondly, The Hortatory oration. Concio ad Magi­stratum. Wherein are three things:

  • 1. A severe increpation of corruptions in their judging.
  • 2. A serious perswasion to righteous judging.
  • 3. A sad demonstration, or relation of the miserable effects that followed evil judging.

1. A severe increpation of their corruptions in judging, aggravated by their duration, and obduration in this sinne, vers. 2. How long will ye judge unjustly: Quousque tandem Catilina.

2. A serious perswasion to righteous judging, vers. 3. Defend the poor and fatherlesse; do justice to the afflicted and needy. vers. 4. Deliver the poor and needy; rid them out of the hand of the wicked.

3. A sad demonstration, or relation of the miserable effects [Page 3] of injustice usher'd in with a new complaint by way of admi­ration, v. 5. They know not, neither will they understand, they walk on in darkness; though the unjust judgements of those gods had brought the just judgements of God upon the Land, yet they are wofully blinde, they know not, they are wilfully blinde, they will not understand, they are wret­chedly blinde, they go on in perverting justice. All the foun­dations of the earth are out of course, let them be. Poetica concessio. Geneb: Though all lawes and orders be violated, Estates disturbed, Parliament priviledges destroyed, Subjects liberties infringed, all things brought to confusion, yet they weigh it not, value it not; they have that stands clypei loco. Marl: they are armed with a Jus Divinum; they are vi­carij Dei, they who resist their laws, or rather their lusts, shall commit crimen laesae Majestatis. This insolency is aba­sed in the 6 and 7. v. I have said you are Gods, &c. Its true, the power you have is from God, and it should be as true, the power you have should be for God. But let me whis­per in your eares, as you whisper in your hearts, Ye shall dye like men, and fall as one of the Princes: i. e. your places shall not be Targets to defend you against judgement, but traps to let you fall lower into judgement.

And thus having ended his Sermon to the Judges with little successe; for he did but surdo fabulam, he makes his appeale and application to the supream Prince; which brings me to the third part.

3. The conclusory prayer, v. 8. Arise, O God, judge thou the earth; for thou shalt possesse all Nations; i. e. Lord take to thy selfe thy power, supply thine own place, and turne them out of the Courts of Justice, who turne Justice out of their Courts.

My text is that part of the Psalme which answers that se­cret objection that lyes and lurks in the breasts and bosomes of Rulers, viz. their pattent from heaven for their places, and therefore they thinke they may act any thing in their places, though it be against heaven. Its true, as it shews a pattent from heaven for the places of Judges, so also it shews a pattent for places in hell for unjust Judges.

The words are the Judges Commission from his Highnes the Lord Protector of heaven and earth.

Wherein observe three parts.

  • 1. A deputation to their places.
  • 2. A computation for their times.
  • 3. An imputation of their crimes.
  • 1. Shews their dignity.
  • 2. Shews their death.
  • 3. Shews their damnation.
  • 1. A deputation to their places, I have said you are Gods.
  • 2. A computation of their time; they are not eternall; though they are Gods, they shall live no longer then men, they must dye as men, both for time and manner.
  • 3. The imputation of their crimes which they have com­mitted, as of bribery, extortion, and having respect of per­sons, and fall as one of the Princes.

From these three parts arise three Propositions.

Doct. 1. That Judges, Rulers, Magistrates, are Gods on earth.

Doct. 2. Though they are Gods on earth, yet they are but Gods of earth.

Doct. 3. That if Gods on earth, and of earth, neglect to doe their duty, they shall be damned among Devils in hell.

I have three subjects, every one of which would afford copious matter for a Sermon, but my intention is to speake a little to all, and but a little; it being done to my Sermon, as the Lord Admirall was wont to doe to rebels in revolted Ships, turne the glasse on them, and if they came not in within the houre, they must be cut off; and so must my Sermon. I shall therefore doe as Marriners who have a long voyage, and but a short time, as also many Ports to call in at, only touch and be gone, reserving the chiefest time for the Port wherein I am to liver my lading by applica­tion.

Doct. 1. Magistrates and persons in high places of au­ [...]rity, are gods on earth. I have said, one whose hath said is [Page 5] more authentick then Pythagoras his ipse dixit.

In the prosecution of which point, I shall follow that golden rule of Aristotle, [...].

1. I will shew you Negatively, what gods they are not.

2. Affirmatively; what gods they are.

3. How they are stiled gods.

1. What gods they are not.

1. They are not Dij fictitij, feigned gods, as Apollo the god of wisdome, Mars of warre, Pan of sheep, Nep­tune of the Sea, and Bacchus of wine; of which Hesiod reckons up thirty thousand: the vanity of which a Heathen Cic: lib. de nat: deorum. does sufficiently manifest; for the opposing of which So­crates suffred death. Which I conceive, the Apostle intends when he sayes, 1 Cor. 8. 5. There are gods many, and Lords many.

2. Not dij factitij, or manufacti, gods made by the hands and heads of men, as Idols are. Psal. 115. 4, 5, 6. 7. Their idols are silver and gold, the work of mens hands, they have mouths, but they speak not, &c. Their idols were their gods; Why hast thou stolne away my gods, said Laban to Jacob about his idols, Gen. 31. 30. 32. Pretty gods that could not keep themselves from the theeves.

3. Not dij usurpantes, intruding gods, who assume this name and honour to themselves, which is no way their due: as the Devil is cal'd the god of this world, 2 Cor. 4. 4. not that he is so properly, but that he would be so accounted, though by usurpation; he is cal'd so, a superbia, quia hunc sibi honorem arrogat & vult adorari ut deus, Zanch: Mat. 4. 9. All these will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me; it was the Devils ambition to be exalted a god in heaven above God, and it was his impudence to be adored the god of the earth by the Son of God.

4. Not dij sensuales; Belly gods; Whose God is their bel­ly, Phil. 3. 19. that dung-hill deity hath too many wor­shippers; as Polyphemus in Euripides, Se tantum offerre victimas ventri suo, qui maximus esset deorum, Epicurus de Grege Porci, Pamphagus, Nabal, Dives.

[Page 6] 5. Not dij reales, reall and true Gods; such as have a blessed and divine nature, attended with those glorious pro­perties, of eternity, immensity, ubiquity, omnisciency, &c. for so only is God himselfe. Isai. 44. 6. I am the first and the last, and beside me there is no God. 1 Cor. 8. 6. But to us there is but one God.

2. What gods they are; they are dij mortales & caduci, mortall, earthly, perishing gods; even such gods as the Ly­caonians supposed Paul and Barnabas to be, Act. 14. 11. gods in the likenes of men; or if you please, men in the like­nes of God: but more of this when I come to the second point.

3. How they are gods?

Seven wayes.

1. Adoptivè; so Bonav: God adopts them to be his sons. v. 6. And all of you children of the most High.

Chara Deúm soboles, magnum Jovis incrementum, Virg: adopted they are to place and power, though not alwayes to grace and holiness.

2. Analogicé; so Theod: by way of analogy, tanquam in hoc deum imitantes; as God hath his seat of judgment in hea­ven, so these their seats and judiciall thrones on earth, where they judge the actions of men.

3. Nuncupativè; so Greg: they have the titles and ap­pellations of gods; God stamps a name of his own upon them: it was an honour to Josephs son, that Jacob put his name on him, Gen. 48. 16. much more for Magistrates that God puts his name on them, his Elohim, not his Jehovah.

4. Repraesentativè; so Aug: they resemble and represent the image of God, Gerunt imaginem dei: the very Heathen could see so much divine glory in the face of a Magistrate, that he stiled him, [...], the living image of the ever-living God: they are (to use Nazianzens expressi­on) pictures drawn of God; every Magistrate, though in never so low a place, beares the image of God; a peny beares the image of the Prince as well as a shilling.

5. Authoritativè; they are ordained, appointed, autho­rized to be Gods. If any sue Magistrates with a Quo warran­to, [Page 7] or upbraid them with a Quis vas fecit judices, they have good authority to shew, they have a Pattent under Christs broad Seale for it. Pro. 8. 15, 16. By me Kings reigne and Princes decree justice; by me Princes rule and Nobles, and all the Judges of the earth, i. e. God the Father hath made over unto me all the powers and governments in the world; I have the disposall of them all, I appoint such governments and governours. Psal. 75. 6. For God is Judge, he putteth down (one government and governour) and setteth up ano­ther. This truth the Apostle fully cleares and confirmes, Rom. 13. 1, 2. Let every soul be subject to the higher powers; for there is no power, but of God; the powers that be are ordai­ned of God. V. 2. Whosoever resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. Beza's note on this Text is singular; I grant that Paul doth yield that God is the Author of go­vernment; but why doth he adde (when he had said, no power but is of God) the powers that are, are ordained of God. To which he answers, I thinke not only the thing it selfe, and the power of Magistrates is from God in generall, but also the severall degrees of Magistrates, and the distributions of Dignities are from him in particular: He gives the reason of all; Ʋt infimis ordinibus parendum esse sciamus.

6. Ministerialiter; they doe supplere vices dei, they are his vice-royes and vice-gerents. 2 Chron. 19. 6. Jehosaphat tels his Judges, that they judged not for men but for the Lord: and in Rom. 13. 4, 6. they are called [...] and [...].

7. Participativè; God imparts, and they participate of the common gifts of the Spirit, whereby they are abundant­ly qualified for government; as the Sun, the Primum Lu­cidum, communicates his raies of light to the Starres, so does God to his substitutes: this we finde in the Elders, Num. 11. 17. And likewise in David after Samuel had a­nointed him with the horne of oyle, 1 Sam. 16. 13, 14. But above all in Solomon, 1 Kings 3. 12. Behold I have done according to thy word: loe, I have given thee a wise and under­standing heart, so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like to thee: He had large [Page 8] powrings out of the spirit of government: Nazianzen gives this large commendation of Solomon, that he had [...], largenesse of heart, more copious then the sand of the sea-shore; witnesse that unparrellel'd decision of the true mother, 1 Kings 13. 16, to the 28. in which verses you may see how all Israel upon the judgemen [...] feared the King, for they saw the wisdom of God was in him to do judgement.

Doct. 2. That Magistrates, though they are Gods on earth, yet they are but Gods of earth: they are not immortal Deities, neither have they everlasting Godheads. Those Gods, as they had a beginning, so they must have an end. Quicquid oritur, moritur; there is a Mene, Mene, on them, their daies are numbred, their time is computed: Hercules his pillar stands in their way, Non datur ultra. You shall die as Adam.

1. As Adam signifies the proper Name of the first man; though he had a posse non mori, yet he came to a non posse non mori at last, Jans. As sure as Adam the first man died, so shall all men that come from his loins.

2. As Adam signifies a most vile and abject person, Geneb. in loc. they shall die as the meanest and vilest persons. I shall not now stand to shew you how they shall die; but this is most true, as certainly as men shall die, so certainly shall Judges die as men. Alexander flaterred by others, and his Plut. in vit. Alex. own heart also, yet came to this at last, Haec sagitta probat me esse mortalem.

Heb. 9. 27. Statutum est: Magistrates and Judges die by a Statute Law never to be repealed or reversed. Every Ma­gistrate, as well as every man, when he hath acted his part on the Stage of this world, shall have his exit. The Preacher tels us that death is the end of all men, Eccles. 7. 2. and Job tels us that Kings, Counsellors and Princes, that had gold, as well as others, are lodged in the withdrawing cham­ber of the grave, Job 14. ad 20. yea Job himself a Judge, and a righteous one to, saies, he knew God would bring him to death, and to the house appointed for all living, Job 30. 23. Very true is that of the Poet,

Scilicet omne sacrum, mors importuna profanat,
Ovid. 3. Amor. 8.
Omnibus obscuras injicit illa manus.

Doct. 3. That those Gods of earth that have not faithfully discharged their trust, done their duties, shall be cast down a­mong the devils in hell to be tormented. And fall like one of the Princes: There are three several Readings or Expositions given of the words.

1. Like the Anakims the sons of Enoch, who were of vast, huge, strong bodies, whom Joshua slew, Josh. 11. 21. so Jansen.

2. Like one of the tyrants, as Sennacherib, Antiochus, Herod, Nero, Julian, &c. according to that,

Ad generum Cereris sine caede, & sanguine pauci
Juven. sat.
Descendunt reges, & sicca morte tyranni.

Some singular judgement not usual or common to ordi­nary men. Musc.

3. But the stream of Interpreters (as Aug. Hier. Theod. Basil. Chrysost. Genebrard. Arnob.) runs thus, They shall fall as one of the Princes of the devils; who being Gods in heaven, abusing their places by their pride, were cast down from the top of heaven, to the bottom of hell: 2 Pet. 2. 4. He spared not the Angels that sinned, but threw them down to hell: [...], a word borrowed from the Heathen, to set forth the greatnesse and grievousnesse of their torments, Ad paenas tartareas damnavit, Mede.

Those that have had the highest places on earth (if they have abused them) shall have the lowest places in hell. Wicked Magistrates shall get nothing by their greatnesse, but greater punishments. [...], Greatnesse of place abused, will produce greatnesse of pu­nishment. Ingentia beneficia, ingentia flagitia, ingentia sup­plicia, Eccles. Hist. Magd. cent. 5. Basil 1569. Epist. Ded. in initio. great mercies, great sins, and great punishments, are mutually twisted together. Isa. 30. 33. Tophet is ordained of old, yea for the King it is prepared, he hath made it deep and large; the pile thereof is fire and much wood, the breath of the Lord like a stream of brimstone doth kindle it: The Holy [Page 10] Ghost hints in these words two things;

1. That hell is principally and on purpose prepared for great persons, as Princes and Judges.

2. That the greatest punishments in hell are prepared for the greatest persons: So that I may safely conclude with that usual saying, Hell is paved with Priests skuls, and Prin­ces headpieces. Magistrates and Ministers that have been evil, shall have the lowest places, the hottest holes in hell, among the worst of devils.

I shall now come to apply these three Doctrines:

  • 1. By way of Information.
  • 2. Of Exhortation.

First, By way of Information to three sorts;

  • 1. Ministers.
  • 2. People.
  • 3. Magistrates.

1. It informs Ministers, that it is a duty incumbent on us, to put people in minde of this truth, and that very often, that Magistrates are Gods; though not participatione divi­nae essentiae, yet similitudine divinae potentiae, and therefore alwaies to presse them to render obedience and subjection to them, though they have no right to their places, or do no right in their places. Titus 3. 1. Put them in minde to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey Magistrates: There were many in Crete infected with the leven of Judas Galilaeus, who denied any honour or homage due to Magi­strates; and that which most incouraged them was, that they were Heathenish and Hellish Magistrates: all which Paul well knew, and notwithstanding he cals on Titus to call on the people to give them their due: Though Magistrates do not their duties to people, yet people must do their duties to Magistrates. We Ministers must often strike upon this string, though it be a jarring one, and very offensive to peoples ears. Isa. 62. 6. Ministers are called the Lords re­membrancers, not only to put God in mind of his mercy, but also to put the people in mind of their duty. I hope this may be a sufficient Apology for my Text and Treatise.

2. It informs Ministers how they should speak of Magi­strates, high or low, viz. with reverence and respect, even as Gods Ordinance, yea as of Gods: We may reprove them, but we may not reproach them; farre be from us [Page 11] (Tribunitii clamores) invectives against them to please the fancies, and tickle the itching ears of the rude multitude. Exod. 22. 28. Thou shalt not revile the Gods, nor speak evil of the ruler of thy people: Its a charge given Ministers as well as others. It is put down as the mark of dreamers, to despis­dominion, and speak evil of dignities, Jude 8. Such were the Nicolaitans, and the Gnosticks. Truly, for my part, I should much doubt whether they are Ministers of Christ, that dare speak reproachfully of the Magistrates of Christ.

3. It informs Ministers, as how to speak of, so how to speak to Magistrates, viz. with humble and honourable ad­dresses to speak to them; not only (as he) [...], with silken words, but with sugred words, not sawcy and surly speeches: Job 34. 18. Is it fit to say to a King, thou art wicked? and to Princes, you are Belial? Thou, (that Quakers word) argues too much rudenesse: Belial, that prophane word, argues too much rashnesse. The Silk­worm bragged she caught Princes and great persons with what came out of her bowels, when the Spider caught no­thing but flies. Blanditiis obtinere solent, quae autoritate non Amb. in 1 Tim. 5. v. 2. possunt; Soft and sweet words are keyes to open the locks of Magistrates bosoms. See how those (that were godly to) insinuated and crept into the hearts of Rulers, Dan. 6. 21. O King live for ever, my God hath sent his Angel, &c. And before thee, O King, have I done no hurt; and the King was exceeding glad. Act. 26. 25. ad 32. I am not mad most Noble Festus, v. 27. King Agrippa, beleevest thou the Prophets, I know that thou beleevest: Then Agrippa said unto Paul, al­most thou perswadest me to be a Christian. Luther pleading before the Emperour, beg'd pardon for his rudenesse, as not being acquainted with the tender and delicate ears of Princes and Rulers, by which he obtained much favour.

4. Are Magistrates Gods by name, but men by nature; it informs Ministers to take heed of flattery, that politique Idolatry; that Quicquid libet, licet, that Magistrates lust Quicquid De­metrius j [...]bet, id [...] homines ju [...]tum & d [...] sa [...]ctum. [...]lu [...]. is the best law; that what Magistrates command is just with men, and holy with God: Such sprinklings of Court-holy water, by parasitical Chaplains, have undone the most Ma­gistrates [Page 12] in the world. Poor Alexander suffered much this way, who having in his drink slain his friend Clytus, and being troubled in his conscience for it, that he could neither eat nor drink three daies together; Anaxarchus the Philo­sopher to comfort him, spake flatteringly, The Ancients placed Justice by Jupiter, to intimate that whatever Jupiter did, must needs be just; and therefore whatever so great a King as thou art, doest, ought to be esteemed just; first, by Q. Curtius. thy self, then by all others. It cost Ahab his life, and per­haps his soul, the false and flattering Prophets advice to go up to Ramoth Gilead, with the promise of prosperity and victory, 1 Kings 22. 6. How much more commendable was Elijah, who told Ahab the truth, when he had killed Na­both, and took possession of his vineyard, 1 Kings 21. 19. In the place where dogs▪ licked the blood of Naboth, shall dogs lick thy blood, even thine: Or John Baptist, who told Herod plainly, it was not lawfull for him to have his brother Philips wife, Mark 6. 18. though it cost him his head: Or Ambrose, who tartly reproved Theodosius for his sins, and took away his vain excuse of Davids example, with a Quem sequutus es errantem sequere paenitentem. Oh let us tell them that Justice ought to be the rule of their wils, and not their wils the rule of Justice: That the people should grow rich by them, and not they grow rich by the people: That if they do worse then their predecessors, that God will do worse with them then with their predecessors. In a word, that God will deal severely with them, that have not dealt sincere­ly with their God.

2. Information, To the people.

1. It informs the people the Divine original of Magistracy: Government of men over men is from God; [...]. Hom. Iliad. [...]. Tenendum est illud principium Magistratûs officium esse a Deo, Calv. in 1 Tim. cap. 2. 10. Joh. 34. 35. Is it not written in your law, I said ye are Gods? If he called them Gods, to whom the word of the Lord came, (Cui venit speciale dominandi mandatum) An expresse Commission from hea­ven for some men to Rule on earth, Surely then blasphe­mous is the assertion of Anabaptists and Socinians, that [Page 13] Magistracy is from the devil. And grossely erroneous is the opinion of the Papists, who according to Aquinas, affirm Dominium esse jure humano: It is a strange riddle how the Pope should be Jure Divino, and the Emperour who made him so, should be but Jure humano.

2. It informs the people, how great and grievous a sinne rebellion against the Gods must needs be: To walk, yea to warre Antipodes against Government, or Governours, is as bad as witchcraft, and deserves as much to be punished by the Judges.

I. It is a gyants sinne; such persons are [...], takers up of arms against God. Rom. 13. 2. Whosoever resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. If those that resist, then much more they that rebell against the highest Powers, re­bell against the highest God.

II. It is a sinne proper to reprobates: Prov. 17. 11. An evil man seeketh only rebellion: And Sheba, who sounded a trumpet to stirre up the people to rebell against David, is cal­led a man of Belial, 2 Sam. 20. 1.

III. It is a sinne God hath severely punished, even in this life; as in Corah, Dathan, and Abiram, Numb. 16. 32. an unheard of punishment, to shew how grievously God is offended with rebels; sad judgements we reade came on Athaliah, Absalom, Zimri, Sheba for this sin.

IV. It is a sinne for which God will certainly damn men, (if they do not repent) Rom. 13. 2. And they that resist, shall receive to themselves damnation: Let Atheists, Papists, Le­vellers, Quakers, and such like, of the devils litter, resist au­thority, but let no people fearing God. Rebellion is no fruit of the Gospel; it is an apple of spiritual Sodom, (which like Sodom apples, toucht with the mouth, fill it with cin­ders and ashes.) I speak the more, that we may never have any more Sheba's to blow the trumpet of rebellion amongst us; but let us render unto Magistrates due obedience, [...], the good as God, the bad for God; as Basil gives sweet and savory advice.

3. It informs the people, that seeing Magistrates are but dying, perishing men, how vain they are who build all their [Page 14] hope and happinesse in being in their favour: Alas they that build their hopes on Magistrates, are like those who build houses on mud-wals, which will certainly lay the build­ing in the durt. Psal. 146. 3, 4. Put not your trust in Prin­ces, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help, his breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth. Isa. 2. 22. Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils, for wherein is he to be ac­counted of?

4. Shall wicked Magistrates be sent among devils, let this inform the people, not to envy the pomp, power, prospe­rity of such persons; they are dealt withall by God, as the cockles are by the Eagles,

—tolluntur in altum,
Ʋt lapsa graviore ruant.

To make them the better prey. Could you see where Caligula were, who wished all Rome had but one neck, that he might cut it off with one blow: or Nero, who reading that of the Tragedian, [...], [...], I dead, let every thing be mingled with fire; cried out, [...], yea whilst I live; which he did en­deavour, setting Rome on fire in divers places, and singing for joy to see it burn: such have fire and fury enough; you would not have their places on earth, to have their places in hell.

3. Information, to Magistrates.

1. What good encouragement they have to proceed, both in civil, criminal, and capital causes; they have not only Gods Warrant for it, but also Gods Word to be with them, 2 Chron. 19. 6. The Lord is with you in the judgement. Deus Nobiscum, is encouragement enough to carry you on. Frederick Duke of Saxony being doubtfull whether he might proceed so farre in punishment of offences, as to death, be­ing much disheartned by Popish doctrine, had Luthers book De jure Magistratus put into his hands, which when he had read, and weighed, he lift up his eyes and hands to hea­ven, blessing God he saw that state was so pleasing to him, and profitable to men.

2. Are Magistrates but men? It informs them, how vain [Page 15] those conceits of theirs are, that think they are targetted against death; Deaths spear can strike through those that have the most iron sides. Proud and prophane Herod swel­led up with the conceit of an immortal Deity, from the peoples hum and clamour of vox Dei, upon his eloquent Qui modo im­mertales, &c. Euseb. Oration, yet was suddenly eat up with worms, Acts 12. v. 23. God may suddenly, and will certainly bring you to the grave, and cause you to remain in the tomb, Job 21. 32.

3. Information, What great cause Magistrates have to act presently and speedily: You are living Gods, yet you are but dying men; you are but Gods pro tempore, therefore act ex tempore. Eccles. 9. 10. Whatsoever thy band findeth to do, do it with thy might, for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave, whither thou goest. Act. 13. 36. David when he had served his generation by the will of God, fell on sleep; i. e. David was carefull before he died to do the work of his generation: Let this be as good a warning to you, as [...], was to Philip King Plut. of Macedon.

4. Information, Let it acquaint Magistrates who are their best friends, even those that presse and perswade them to do their duties of Gods, that they may avoid the damnation of devils. I know such Ministers are lookt upon with a squint eye, and are forbid to preach at Bethel, Amos 7. 13. they are called the troublers of Israel, 1 King. 18. 17. are put in­to prisons, 2 Chron. 16. 10. yea often are beheaded, Mark 6. 27. yet they are their chiefest friends. Those that kept their friends awake in the time of the sweating sicknesse, were the truest friends (though they thought them not so) for they kept them from death. And reproving Ambrose, was solus dignus Episcopi nomine, as Theodosius ingenuously acknowledged.

2. Ʋse, Of Exhortation.

  • 1. To Magistrates.
  • 2. To people.

1. To Magistrates, Are you Gods? then be perswaded to three things:

  • 1. Live as Gods.
  • 2. Judge as Gods.
  • [Page 16]3. Defend as Gods.

First, Live as Gods.

  • 1. In your Conversations.
  • 2. In your Families.

1. In your Conversations: Places of Gods, and practises of devils, are grievous solecismes. You are called Optimates, because you should be the best, and resemble him who is Optimus as well as Maximus. Your lives, like Planets, have great influence upon inferiour bodies.

—Non sic inflectere sensus
Humanos edicta valent, ac vita regentum.

Magistrates lives are looking-glasses, by which all their neighbours usually dresse themselves: And assure your selves Austins rule is true, Magis intuentur quid fecerit Jupiter, quam quid docuerit Plato: The people more mind what the next Justice does, then what the best Minister saies: They more observe what the Judge delivers, then what the Preacher. Oh therefore let the graces of God that have been in other gods, as meeknesse in Moses, uprightnesse in Samuel, holinesse in David, wisdom in Solomon, patience in Job, courage in Nehemiah, meet in your lives, as in so many burning glasses, whereby you may warm the hearts of the godly, and burn the hands of the wicked.

II. In your Families: Have a care you entertain none but holy persons into them, and keep up holy duties in them; that the ancient salutation may come into fashion again, And to the Church that is in thy house, Philem. 2. Good Jo­shua, in such a time of liberty and licentiousnesse as this is, keeps himself and family to the pure service of God, Josh. 24. 15. I and my house will serve the Lord. David makes a publique protestation, that his eyes shall be upon the faith­full of the land, that they may dwell with him; he that walketh in a perfect way should serve him: that the worker of deceit shall not dwell in his house: that the teller of lies shall not tarry in his sight, Psal. 101. 6, 7. Nicephorus reports of Andronicus the elder, that he was Master of such a family, as was the very shop of vertue, discipline, and all godly exercises, and [Page 17] therefore was called [...], the Sun of the earth to en­lighten others: Oh labour to make yours so, yea a little heaven.

Secondly, Judge as Gods; [...] &c. Just. Martyr proves that you had never been put into Gods place, but to do his work, and in his way. Now God judgeth,

1. From an innate principle of affection to justice, Isa. 61. 8. I the Lord love judgement; so ought Judges to exe­cute justice and judgement, from an inward principle of love to them: The wheels of affection within, should cause the hand of execution to go without. Prov. 21. 15. It is joy to a just man to do judgement. Titus was so delighted with it, that he was wont to cry, Amici diem perdidi, I have lost that day, wherein he had done no act of justice. Parúm est justitiam facere nisi & diligas, Bern. ad Eug.

2. God judgeth righteously, justly, Psal. 67. 4. Thou shalt judge the people righteously: Psal. 119. 75. I know, O Lord, thy judgements are right, saies David: And so ac­knowledged Mauritius the Emperour, when Phocas had slain his wife and children; so ought Judges. Deut. 16. 20. God gives a special charge that you should do that which is altogether just, i. e. pure justice, free from any mud; that what the Heathens brag'd of their Aristides, surnamed Justus, might be as true of every Judge, Justice, and Maior in England; It were easier to turn the Sun out of his course, then to turn them out of the course of Justice.

3. God judgeth impartially, 2 Chron 19. 7. For there is no iniquity in the Lord our God, nor respect of persons, nor ta­king bribes. Job 34. 19. tels us he accepts not the persons of Princes, neither regardeth the rich more then the poor: which the Heathen could observe; and Phocylides speaks truly of God:


So ought Judges: Deut. 1. 17. Ye shall have no respect of persons in judgement, but shall hear the small as well as the great; you shall not fear the face of man. Lev. 19. 15. Thou shalt not favour the person of the poor, nor honour the person of [Page 18] the mighty. A Judge should be as the Sun, which shines on the beggar as well as the noble; he must view the face of the cause, and not the face of the person. It was a blur to Cesar that Cassius his cause was the better, but he must de­ny [...]. in vit. Cesar. Brutus nothing: the poor mans cause is the better, but the rich man, neighbour, friend, kinsman must not be over­thrown. Prov. 18. 5. It is not good to accept the person of the wicked, to overthrow the righteous in judgement; there is a [...] in the words, more is implied then spoken; i. e. it is a very sordid, sinfull, shamefull thing to be done, they that do it deserve to be hist at in the streets, as they go from their Judicatories.

4. God judgeth deliberately, advisedly, making strict scrutiny and diligent search whether the accusation be so, Gen. 18. 20, 21. And the Lord said, because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is grievous, I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether accord­ing to the cry of it, which is come unto me, and if not I will know. Greg. in loc. observes, that God doth speak thus to teach men, Ne mala hominum antè praesumamus credere, quàm probare; for God cannot descend, neither need he search to know, for all things are naked and open before him, Heb. 4. 13. [...], dissected, unboweld, anato­mized.

[...]. Hes. So ought Judges to be very inquisitive, sifting, searching; they are commanded first to examine the thing narrowly, Deut. 17. 4. And if it be told thee, and thou hast heard (of it) and enquired diligently, and behold it (be) true (and) the thing certain, then shalt thou bring forth that man, or that wo­man, and stone them with stones, till they die. This was Judge Jobs course, Job 29. 16. The cause I knew not, I searched out, i. e. the cause that was dark, difficult and dubious, he would examine witnesses, and weigh circumstances, that he would find (veritatem in profundo) the truth in the bottom. It was a great stain to David that he gave away Mephibosheths living upon the false information of Ziba, 2 Sam. 16. 2. 3, 4. [Page 19] And it's horrible injustice (if true) what I have heard of the Turks, that they will put a man to death, and then en­quire whether he justly suffered: Judges must be carefull that Writs of Error be not sued upon them of this kind.

5. God judgeth speedily and swiftly, after full know­ledge of the truth, Joel 3. 4. Swiftly and speedily will I re­turn your recompence; è vestigiò, while you can say, what is this. How quick was he with Sodom and Gomorrha, Gen. 19. How speedy with Corah and his complices, Numb. 16. So ought Judges, after examination, fall upon execution, and that with expedition. Ezra 7. 26. And whosoever will not do the Law of thy God, and the Law of the King, let judge­ment be executed speedily upon him, whether it be unto death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment. I will early destroy all the wicked of the land, Psal. 101. 1. Summo manè, I will do morning justice. Festinantèr, so Genebrad. I will hastily do it. Justice shall be on the wing; delaies are very dangerous and injurious: To delay Justice is worse sometimes then to deny justice.

6. God judgeth valiantly, couragiously, he is not afraid of the multitude, or might of malefactors. The right hand of the Lord doth valiantly, Psal. 118. 15. It's right-hand Justice which wounds the hairy scalps of them that go on in wickednesse. You have God challenging as a valiant cham­pion, Isa. 27. 4. Who would set the briars and thorns in battel against me? I would go thorow them, I would burn them toge­ther. Gods justice against sinners, is as fire to briers and thorns, which easily and speedily consumes them. And this is the reason the Holy Ghost gives, why the whore of Babi­lon shall be so irresistably and irrecoverably consumed, Be­cause strong is the Lord God who judgeth her, Rev. 18. 8. So ought Judges to be very valiant and couragious. When Joshua came into the place of Magistracy, God laies a charge three times; in the 1. chap. 6, 7, 9. on him, to be very cou­ragious. Solomons throne (which is called Gods throne) was supported with Lions, to shew, that in execution of judgement, Magistrates should have the hearts of Lions, of all beasts the most magnanimous. The Athenian Judges [Page 20] sate in Mars street, to shew they had Martiall hearts, and did not bear the sword in vain, Rom. 13. 4. Timidi nunquam statuêre trophaea, cowardly and timorous Judges, will never set up monuments of their victories over sin and prophaness. It is very sad, when we may say of our Judges, as the Hea­then did of Judges in his time, they were very good, Si audeant, quae sentiunt, if they durst but do what they ought Cic, de Mil. to do.

Thirdly, Defend as Gods, the things of God.

  • 1. The Book of God.
  • 2. The Son of God.
  • 3. The Day of God.
  • 4. The Ordinances of God.
  • 5. The Ministers of God.
  • 6. The People of God.

1. Defend and maintain the Book of God, I mean the Scriptures, those Epistolas omnipotentis Dei, as Greg▪ stiles them; let not (those two brethren in iniquity) Papists and Quakers, dare to say, [...], [...], the great Bible, is a great libell; or call Evangelium, Aven-gilion, the Gospel of life, the Gospel of a lie; or use the scoffing phrase of Bonners Chaplain, his pretty little Gods-book. Si­lence those expressions of the black Gospel, the inky Divi­nity, &c. Oh do you own and honour it as a great expressi­on of Gods love to you, and make you expressions of your love to that. Psal. 119. 97, 103, 105. David through the whole Psalm shews large affections to the Word of God. Corn. à Lapide reports of Robert King of Sicily, that he was wont to say of the Scriptures to Petrarch, that they were dearer to him then his Kingdom, and that if he must want one of them, he had rather want his Diadem then the Scriptures. Much such a story doth Speed in his Chronicles relate of that Queen of famous memory Q. Elizabeth, upon the presenting of a Bible to her by the City of London.

II. The Son of God, of whom we may better say, then they of Titus, Delitiae generis humani, The Saviour of the world, the desire of Nations, the Head of the Church, the Beloved of the beleevers soul; let none scoff him with a [Page 21] crucified God, but make all to kisse the Son, Psal. 2. 12. If you neglect this, shall not the Heathen Judges rise up a­gainst you in judgement? I mean the Athenian, who put Socrates to death, for an irreverent speech concerning their Plutareh. in vit. Nic. gods. How many irreverent, yea irreligious speeches are belched out against the only wise God, Jesus Christ, 1 Tim. 1. 17. and yet our Magistrates have no hearts to hate, no hands to punish, it were well if they had no houses to enter­tain such blasphemers: All that I shall say is, consider what a dreadfull curse is denounced against such men and Magi­strates, 1 Cor. 16. 22. If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.

III. The Day of God, which is Gods holy day, Isa. 58. 13. the Christians market day for their souls, Isa. 55. 1. Christs Coronation day, Rev. 1. 10. the Beleevers Sabbath, and day of rest, Heb. 4. 9. the Regina dierum, as Ignatius religiously cals it; do not suffer that pure day to be so pro­phaned; that pious Ministers, and godly people may have as just cause to speak with shame and sorrow (what Al­stedius did of the Germans Sabbath) it was dies daemoniacus, non Dominicus, the day of the devil, according to peoples observation of it, and not the day of Jesus Christ. Let Ne­hemiahs example spur you up to do your duties, Neh. 13. 17, ad 23. Give me leave to present you with five things from the words.

1. He begins with the great ones; the Nobles of Judah were not so high, but he made the Law to reach them, vers. 17.

2. He presses them by undeniable arguments, as the judgements their fathers brought upon the Nation, by pro­phaning the Sabbath, v. 18.

3. He begins the sanctification of the Sabbath over night, and makes the people keep in over night, that both pre­paratory duties might be done, as also their bodies refresh­ed with sleep, might be freed from drouziuesse in the service of God, v. 19.

4. He set his own servants as spies to see how the law was observed, v. 19.

[Page 22] 5. He commanded the Levites to do their duties for the sanctifying of the Sabbath. Oh that all our Magistrates would do likewise.

IV. The Ordinances of God, those canales gratiae, those golden pipes which lye at the spring-head of grace, the Lord Jesus Christ, who by them conveighs much of himself into the soul, Joh. 1. 16. Suffer no uncircumcised Philistines to poyson those wels of salvation, Isa. 12. 3. Let no Ele­phants puddle those springs, because they cannot endure to see their ugly bodies; let them see by your practise and punishment, that the Harts do not more bray after the water-brooks, then your hearts breath after the living God, in the enjoyment of Ordinances, Psal. 42. 1, 2.

V. The Ministers of God, those legati a latere, legeir Embassadors, that lye to keep peace between heaven and earth, 2 Cor. 5. 20. those dispensers of mysteries, 1 Cor. 4. 1. the Mercuries from heaven that bring you glad tydings, Rom. 10. 15. Christs Paranymphs and spokesmen to woe and win souls to him, Joh. 3. 19. In a word, the very saviours of your souls instrumentally, 1 Tim. 4. 16. do you save them, succour them, support them, supply them, do for them, whatever lies in your place and power; it was one of the main ends of the institution of Magistrates at first, Exod. 4. 16. Thou shalt be to him in stead of God. It was a noble speech of a Prince to his Minister, T [...] me calamo, ego te gla­dio, Defend me with thy Pen, and I will defend thee with my Pike. Be you Protectors to us, and we will be Preachers for you, as well as to you.

VI. The People of God: Those Columbae and Columnae of the world, of whom the world is not worthy, Heb. 11. 38. The saviours of Nations, Job 22. 30. the apples of Gods eyes, Zech. 2. 8. the Commanders of God, Isa. 45. 11. the glory upon which shall be a defence, Isa. 4. 5. Take them to your care, custody, compassion: You are called the shields of the earth, Psal. 47. 9. that you may shelter and safeguard Gods Hephzibahs: You are nursing fathers and mothers, Isa. 49. 23. that you should dance Gods darlings in your arms, and dandle them on your knees.

Give me leave to back this Use of Exhortation with some Motives.

Motive 1. God hath exalted you from very low, to very high places; he hath lifted you up (as nature did Saul) higher by the head and shoulders then the rest of your brethren, hath put you into his seat, placed his Name on you, called you Gods, commanded all your brethrens sheaves to bow before you, and obey you, that you may say as Iphicrates the Athenian Captain in all his glory, [...], from what am I raised, to what am I exalted! Arist. Rhet. lib. 1. cap. 9. May not a little inversion of Davids words agree with you, Ps. 113. 7. He hath raised up the poor out of the dust, and lifted the needy out of the dunghill, and set you with Princes, even with the Princes of his people. Or else the words in the Mag­nificat, Luke 1. 52. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. What strong engage­ments are these upon you? to exalt him that hath exalted you, to act for him, that hath put you into his place; to improve those talents of place and power, for his interest, who hath intrusted you: it would be horrible ingratitude, (as bad as the Jews) thus to requite the Lord, as to scoff his Word, crucifie his Son, prophane his day, pollute his Or­dinances, slight his Ministers, abuse his people.

Mot. 2. The great good you might do, if you would live, Judge, defend as Gods; what golden, yea what glorious opportunities and prizes are put into your hands, if God would give you hearts to employ and improve them. If the Magistrates of England would make Religion their businesse, and not a design, how easily might they sup­presse sin and prophanesse, advance the power of godlinesse, exalt Christ and his Ordinances to their place, power and purity, encourage and increase those that are sincere and godly, take off the disguises and vizards of hypocrites: I dare boldly say, there is nothing needfull, honourable, credi­table, comfortable for the bodies, souls, estates, names, li­berties, consciences of the people, but they might easily attain it, either by their Precept, President, or Punish­ment.

[Page 24] 1. By Precept: How easily might they stop the muse-holes in good Laws, through which drunkards swearers, &c. do use to creep. What holy and wholsom Laws might the Protector with his Parliament make, and see observed, for suppressing all manner of loosenesse and lewdnesse, and en­couraging purity and holinesse against scoffers and scorners? They might make such Laws as should make the proudest and prophanest in the Land to stoop to their Scepters; and so reform Old, that it would become New England. How prosperous were the Heathen Magistrates, as Numa, Ly­curgus, Solon, in this way of new making their Country; and why might not Christian Magistrates be much more? What made the Israelites be so highly esteemed by the Ca­naanites, for a wise and understanding people? but the keeping of those righteous Laws and Statutes: And what made the Israelites keep those good Judgements? but Mo­ses and succeeding Magistrates, pressing and perswading, yea perforcing them to observe them, Deut. 4.

2. By President: There is a very great magneticall pow­er and vertue in the examples of godly Magistrates; when they are good, all their followers, relations, acquaintance, neighbours, will be either seriously or seemingly good; they will be either out of subtilty or sincerity like the Ruler. The primum mobile causes all the other spheres to move, and the Sun draws many flowers to be followers of him; so people are much guided and directed by their Magistrates. Ethelbert (a Christian King of Kent) made that whole Kingdom godly by his being godly, and countenancing of such as were godly. And Cassiodore tels us the like story of Theodabad: But why should I trouble you with humane, when Divine story abounds with instances of this nature, both in the time of the Judges, as also of the Kings, who made that of the Poet true,

Regis ad exemplum totus componitur orbis.

3. By Punishment: Those who will not by fair perswa­sion, nor sweet example, be brought on to godlinesse, must be by severe means forced to compliance. David found [Page 25] many of Sauls old Courtiers so wedded to their old sins and superstitions, that he found in them

—Immedicabile vulnus
Ense recidendum:

which made him protest, Psal. 101. 8. that he would early destroy all the wicked of the land, and cut off all evil doers from the City of God; and so will every godly Magistrate do. Prov. 20. 26. A godly Ma­gistrate scattereth the wicked, and bringeth the wheel over them. Those who strike with the fist of violence, Isa. 58. 4. he will strike them with the sword of Justice, Rom. 13. 4. We account it a glory for Magistrates to be attended with a great train here on earth, how much more glory would it be to see them attended with a train to heaven.

Mot. 3. The great expectations of Gods people: When David was exalted to the throne after the death of Saul, the eyes of all Israel were upon him, expecting he would perform those promises he had made before to them, Psal. 75. 2. When I shall receive the Congregation, I will judge uprightly. Vers. 10. All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off, but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted. The eyes of all England are now upon our Magistrates, expect­ing the performance of those promises that were made to them, That judgement should run down as waters, and righ­teousnesse as a mighty stream, Amos 5. 24. Now if those springs either are dried up, or those streams filled with cru­elty, bribery, oppression, &c. We looked for judgement, but behold oppressions; for righteousnesse, but behold a cry, Isa. 5. 7. would not these verifie that old verse,

Parturiunt montes, nascetur ridiculus mus.

Mot. 4. The great comfort this will afford you in your dying hour, that you have Lived, Judged, Defended as Gods. It will not be long before the lock of your Deity (like Sampsons) shall be cut off by deaths sizers, and you shall become like other men: This will be a rate cordiall to you at your departure, 2 Kings 20. 3. I beseech thee O Lord, remember now how I have walked before thee in truth, and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight; [Page 26] what a cheering was this to good Hezekiahs heart. Acts 13. 36. David after he had served his own generation, fell asleep: Dropt asleep, Placidè defunctus est, Gerrard. How quietly do those Magistrates lay their heads upon their pil­lows, to take their last sleep.

Mot. 5. The miserablenesse of your condition, if you neglect to discharge your trust: It had been better for you never to have been Magistrates, to set high on earth, and to lie low in hell; to condemn on earth, and to be con­demned to hell, yea to a worse place there then any of those malefactors whom you have condemned for theft or murder, would it not be extreamly miserable? Potentes, potenter torquebuntur. If Magistrates would often meditate on those two places of Scripture, the one of which shews the place of this punishment, the other the persons with whom they are to be punished, Isa. 30. 33. Matth. 25. 41. Go ye cur­sed into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels; those that were placed among Gods on earth, shall be pla­ced among devils in hell; such thoughts would make men and Magistrates hearts to tremble. The Indians do beleeve when they die, they shall be turned into devils; wicked Ma­gistrates may beleeve when they die, they shall be turned unto devils.

2. Ʋse of Exhortation, To the People.

I. To submit our selves to this present power, Rom. 13. 1, 2, 3, 4. there is a bundle of arguments to presse and perswade us to it, 1 Pet. 2. 13. Submit your selves to every ordinance of man for the Lords sake, whether it be unto the King as supream, or unto Governours, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evil doers, and for the praise of them that do well. The way to make England flourish, must be that which made Lacedamon, Per cives obtemperare doctos, as Theopom­pus spake of it.

II. To be thankfull:

1. For the blessing of Government, that we have Laws to protect, and Magistrates to execute those Laws: What a Chaos and consusion should we soon come to, if these were Aug. de Civ. Dei, lib. 4. cap. 4. wanting. Remotâ justitia, quid sunt regna nisi magna latro­cinia? [Page 27] Remove government, and Nations will quickly be­come dens of beasts for prey, slaughter-houses of blood, Judg. 17. 6. When there was no King in Israel, every one did that which was right in his own eyes. What right was that? If you read the three following Chapters, you shall finde wrong enough: Mieahs house full of Idols, Levites turn'd a begging, houses plundred, Laish treacherously fallen on, the Levites Concubine abused, &c.

2. For present Governours: Give thanks to the God above, for our Gods below; for those happy and Halcyon daies of peace, plenty, prosperity; we sit every one under his Vine and Figtree, and none maketh us afraid, Micah 4. 4. yea we hear the joyfull sound, Psal. 89. 15. we enjoy our Ordinances and opportunities for our souls advantage.

There are two things I would not have you forget.

1. Their sparing you in crowding Oathes and Covenants upon your consciences, meer snares to the people of God.

2. Their freenesse and forwardnesse to provide good Mi­nisters, as also good Maintenance for those Ministers, and that from such monies as were wont to go into the Coffers of former Magistrates; very happy are many Market Towns in England upon this account, whose Ministers bodies must o­therwise have been starved, or else the peoples souls.

Now to speak something to the particular: and First, To To the Judge. you, my Lord, whom I may fitly call Deus umbratilis, a sha­dowing God, or the shadow of God; you are a heavenly piece of coin, who have the Image and superscription of God and Cesar stampt upon you: I would willingly present some­thing to you, which if it should displease, I professe it is like natures production of monsters, which the Philosophers tell us is praeter intentionem ipsius.

And seeing the burthen of both Courts lies upon you, being alone, give me leave to speak to you, as you are to be Judge of Life and Death.

I. You are not ignorant in what age of the world we live in, the old age, which is full of distempers and diseases, the very dregs of sins seat and center themselves in it; the deluge of sin hath drowned the whole Nation (except the Arks of [Page 28] some few Noahs.) Sin is grown impudent, a whores forehead, Jer. 3. 3. Sin hath faced and affrighted the Ministers, that few of them dare oppose it.

1. Some, for fear their neighbous will cheat them of their Tithes.

2. Others, for fear their credits should be blasted.

3. A third sort, for fear of the losse of their living, which they see two or three sons of Belial joyning their forces to­gether, are able to rout any Minister, though it might be as truly said of him, as was once said of Chrysostom, Satiùs est ut sol non luceat, quàm ut ipse non doceat. And those few Ministers (that will jeopardize their Livings, Liberties, and Lives in opposing sinne) are so eclipsed, and crowded with disgraces of Baals priests, Zealous black-coats, covetous tithe-mongers, long-winded Parsons, &c. that sinne over­powers them, and gets head in despite of their heart. Now (my Lord) put to your helping hand, oppose sinne openly, correct it severely, do something in terrorem, that all Eng­land may hear and fear, and do no more any such wicked­nesse, Deut. 13. 11. I have heard it spoken by a Reverend Judge (now with God) to the perpetuall praise of Judge Popham, and Judge Hitcham; in whose daies the high­waies of England were like the waies from Peloponnesus to Athens, so full of theeves that none could escape robbing, [...]lut, perhaps not killing in his travels: Yet they by their indu­stry, zeal, severity, so cleered the Counties where they rode Circuits, that (according to what one of them promised) a man might ride over Sarisbury Plain, with a purse in his hand. By reason of our late warre (which is the womb of all evil) our Nation hath swarmed with rogues and robbers, that we cannot ride safely in the waies, nor sleep quietly in our beds for them; oh let such severe carriage, and zealous courage shew themselves against them and all other male­factors, that the beams of a Deity may shine forth to the confusion of prophanesse and ungodlinesse, that when you pronounce sentence, all may say in a true sense, what they said in a false of Herod, It is the voice of God, and not of man, Acts 12. 22.

[Page 29] II. As Judge of Nisi prius.

1. Cast out all frivolous suits, all malitious, vexatious actions, those opprobria legis, let them know,

(Non vacat exiguis rebus adesse Jovi.) that your Deity cannot attend such sorry businesses, and that your justice shall never be executioner to their malice.

2. Have a special care that no sons of Belial, who swear usually, be admitted for a witnesse, or to take an oath; make a difference between them that swear, and them that fear an oath, Eccles 9. 2. You know that two sons of Belial can and will swear a righteous Naboth, not only out of his livelihood, but also out of his life, except you interpose, 1 King. 21. 13.

3. That those witnesses who shall swear point blank one to another, (as white is to black) that the witnesse who is found to swear fasly, have the reward of perjury. It is now in England (as it was once in Rome) that persons are to be had and hired on both sides, by which innocency is wronged, justice abused, Judges pusled: These oaths make the Land to mourn, oh make those persons mourn for their oaths.

Secondly, To you my much honoured friends the Justices To the Justices of peace, who are our dii titulares; I may invert Tertullus speech to Felix (in particular) to you (in generall) By your care we enjoy great quietnesse, and very worthy deeds are done (unto this County) by your providence. Let me humbly in­treat these things of you.

1. Keep down and pull down those artillery gardens of sin, in which youths are mustered, and made compleat soul­diers for hels service, viz. Alchouses, and suffer not the put­ting down one of them, to be like the cutting off the head of Hydra, in whose room seven more came, as hath been in some places of this County.

2. Keep a very strict and severe hand over inferiour offi­cers; know that they are not like the heavens, that can move by an inward principle, viz. of conscience of the fear of God, but like Clocks or Jacks that only move by the heavy weights of a Warrant, or fear of punishment.

3. Never permit prophane and ignorant persons to be [Page 30] chosen officers: It is never likely that one drunkard or swearer will punish or complain of another.

4. Command the Officers of all Congregations, to bring in the names of all such persons, as were absent from the pub­lick worship of God on the Lords day; For many under the pretence of going to any place, go to no place of publick ordinances, but spend that day most prophanely.

Thirdly, To you Gentlemen of the Grand Inquest, who To the Grand Inquest. are dii informantes; I beseech you do something this time by way of petition, that may make for Gods glory, and the good of this County. Oramus, non pugnamus Caesar, was lawfull in a Heathen Magistrates reign, much more in a Christian Magistrates rule; one who hath valiantly rescued our Liberties for us, of whom we in England may as truly say, as the Grecians of their General Q. Flaminius, [...], [...], our Saviour, our Saviour.

It would be too great impudence at least to suspect that He who hath purchased our Liberties for us, would any waies keep them from us. It would rather be a Christian and cha­ritable Metonymie, to attribute (Adrians Motto) unto him, Non Mihi, sed Populo. It shall therefore be my earnest re­quest unto you and for you, That the Lord would grant you the Spirit of Wisdom and of Knowledge, whereby you may improve your selves in your places, Instruments of Gods honour, his Peoples interest, and the flourishing of this County.


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