THE DRVMME OF DEVOTION, Striking out an Allarum to Prayer, by signes in heauen, and Prodigies on earth.

Together with the Perfume of Prayer.

In two Sermons, Preached by William Leigh, Bachilor in Diuinitie, and Pastor of Standish in Lan­cashire.

Luke 21. 28.
And when these things begin to come to passe, then looke vp, and lift vp your heads, for your Redemption draweth neere.

LONDON Printed by Tho: Creede, for Arthur Iohnson, dwelling in Pauls Church-yard, at the signe of the white Horse. 1613.

TO THE RIGHT HONOVRABLE SIR Thomas Parry Knight, one of his Maiesties most Honourable priuie counsell, and Chanceller of his High­nes Dutchie of Lancaster, together with the Right vertuous & Re­ligious Lady his wife, grace be multiplied in this world, and glory in a better.

Right honourable,

IF (as the Psalmist saith) The Lord hath so doone his maruellous workes that they ought to be had in rememberance, and are much sought out of all such as feare him: pardon me in your honourable patience, while I presse with passion such prodi­gies, as haue fallen out of old in former times, and now of late in these moderne daies of danger wherein we liue. All har­bingers of Gods Irefull wrath and in­dignation [Page] for mans transgression; And yet I know not how, (which is a wonder of wonders) signes from heauen, are not respected, sinnes on earth are not repen­ted for. We can discerne the face of the skie, like the Iewes in the Gospell taxed by our Sauiour, and thereby we dare prog­nosticate of the effects of faire or foule weather to come, but we cannot discerne, either by signes from heauen, or prodi­gies on earth, how the Lord is rison out of his place, and threatneth our destructi­on if we repent not.

The meditations hereof, I am bold to put vnder the shelter of your honours protection, and pray they may passe your iuditious eye, in sort as they are tendered, that is, from the dutie and seruice I owe in many rspects, being otherwise vnable to answere the same, but in such passages, of prayer and religious exercises as fall within the compasse of my profession. And surely such passages are best suted to your selfe, whom religion hath made honoura­ble, and worthy those great and waightie imployments you haue vndergone abroad in forraigne parts, and at home within [Page] the kingdome, vnder two religious Prin­ces.

Besides, spare me to seeke protection at your honours hands, in regard of the place you beare with vs, vnder God and the king, our worthy Chancellor, the sterne of which gouernment you haue moderated for many yeares, with such iustice, mixed with mercy, as I dare appeale to your cle­mencie and milde censure, in any thing I haue here tendered.

And for the latter Sermon, which is the Perfume of prayer, (the Arrow of our deliuerance in the daies of danger) I trust it shall not be offensiue, if I make it proper to the Elect Lady, your religi­ous wife and consort, whose practise of much pietie, with prayers and teares (Church-weapons,) haue beene, are and will be a blessing to your house, and an or­nament to the Church of God, whilst Anna-like, she frequents the Temple & house of God, treading vpon that holy ground, with no lesse due, then true de­uotion.

And now the Lord Iesus, as he hath matched you together in grace, and giuen [Page] you much honour, with length of daies, espouse you to himselfe in the kingdome of glorie, that you may come to the feast, and mariage of the Lambe, crowned with glorie, and clad with immortalitie, en­signes of a better world, whither Christ is gone before and hath traced you the way to follow after: which because you haue faithfully done, he will come and fetch you to himselfe in a time accepted, that where he is there may ye also be. A­gainst which day and blessed houre, the Lord God of heauen prepare you, with your oyle and your lamps light, that ye may meete him in the cloudes, and so be caught vp to raigne with him for euer­more. Amen. Amen.

Your honours most hum­ble, and at command, William Leigh.

Striking out an Allarum to Prayer, by signes in heauen and prodigies on earth.


19 And I will shew wonders in heauen aboue, & tokens in the earth beneath, bloud, and fire, and the vapours of smoake.

20 The Sun shalbe turned into darkenes, and the Moone into bloud▪ before that great & notable day of the Lord come.

21 And it shalbe, that whosoeuer shal cal on the name of the Lord shalbe saued.

VPon the reading of this Scrip­ture prophesied of by Ioel, ap­plyed by Peter, and to be accō ­plished in the latter daies, me thoght [Page 2] I heard the Lord speaking from hea­uen, as hee did by another Prophet, and say; Habacuk▪ 2. 2 Write this vision, and make it plaine vpon Tables, that hee may runne that readeth it, for the vision is for an appointed time, and at the last it shall speake and not lie, though it tarry, waite, for it shall surely come and not stay.

Now, what it is that shall come, and 1 not stay, is the subject of my speech, and the division of my Text. There 2 shall come signes and wonders in the latter dayes to provoke our re­pentance; there shall come faith and confidence to all the godly, to assure them of deliverance, and to this end are wonders wrought, as in heauen aboue, so in the earth beneath, bloud and fire, and the vapour of smoake, that the dampe of our sinnes might be put out by the breath of our Savi­our, whose presence wee may be assu­red, then presseth neere vs, when these his wonders are vpon vs.

If Kings of the earth stirre, the commons are moved; shal the King of heauen rise either to bee iudged, [Page 3] or iudge the world, and shal the crea­tures sit still? surely no, for though we his reasonable & religious crea­tures bee silent in our sinnes, and say nothing, yet shall the senselesse creatures grieue and grone after a de­liverance, I say deliverance from the bondage of corruption, wherin they are, and from the dampe of sinne, wherewithall they are pestered. Of 1 these in order as God will. And first of prodigies provoking our repen­tance:2 next of the sweet perfume of prayer, assuring vs of deliverance, when feare and fire shall fine vs for our good; for it shall bee, that who­soever shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

What may be the meaning of the spirit in this place, touching the time and manner of these signes, when, and how they should appeare to the worlds wonder, divers haue diuersly divined: 1. Some say the accomplishment should bee at the second comming of Christ to judge­ment, and bee harbingers of that [Page 4] dreadfull day: 2. Others, for it shall bee at the siedge and sacking of Ierusalem by Titus and Vespati­anus: of which opinion the Greeke Paraphrase is, which citeth Iose­phus writing thereof: 3. Some say, the accomplishment should bee at the death of Christ, and in the day of his passion, when all the world should bee passionate for him, but not with him, for hee must tread the wine-presse alone. Lastly, and the least in reputation of iudge­ment are the Iews, who euen at this day vnderstand it to bee meant of the warres of the Israelites, with Gog and Magog, Ezechiel, 38. 39.

But that I seeme not more opi­natiue then orthodoxall, I may safely say with the precedent words of my Text, that these shall bee accomplished in the latter dayes, which are alwayes taken for the dayes of Christ, when with the effusion of his bloud hee will pow­er out the abundance of his spirite vpon all flesh, and withall shew his [Page 5] wonders from time to time to a senselesse world, senselesse of it Sa­uiour, so as from the first day of his comming in grace, to the last day of his appearance in glory, won­ders shall appeare, more or lesse, to the comfort of the godly, and confusion of the wicked.

And surely, it is respectiue to see, how sparing the Lord is of his judge­ments, and how plentifull in his mer­cies, his bloud and spirit are powred out in al abundance, his signs & pro­digies are but sparingly shewed, and pointed at, as harbingers of his wrath to moue vs to repētance, bloud shed, spirit powred out: O bottomlesse depth of mercy! signes but shewed, and prodigies but pointed at, limit­ting both feare and fire that it fall not vpon vs before we repent, there was never mercy either met it on earth, or matched it in heaven, and therefore I know not whether I shal more willingly admire his loue in spending his mercies vpon vs, or his vndeserued fauors in prouoking our repentance.

[Page 6] David in the person of the faith­full, and in a case nothing diffe­rent, mourneth over Sion with this wofull complaint,Psal. 7 46. Wee see not our signes, and there is no Prophet left, but Lord how long?

Where it is to be observed, that they doe not complaine, because they haue no Captaine to lead them in the field; but that they haue no Prophet to instruct them in the faith: accounting it a greater ca­lamity to lacke the heauenly food, then the earthly fight: nay more, and to come neerer the proper Subiect I haue in hand, these Saints in Sion sorrow not for that they haue no Ensignes to follow on earth: but because they haue no signes shewed them from heauen, to assure them of the Lords presence to fight their battels, and be propitious, deeming it more disasterous to faile of signes about then of Ensignes below; where prophesie is not, there the people perish: and where neither wonders from heaven wound vs to repen­tance, [Page 7] nor tokens below provoke vs to prayer, we are in danger, and die in our security.

Are not all things as they were in the beginning: so saide a secure world in the dayes of Peter, musicke, mirth, and minstrelsie were in their feastes, velvet, silke and sables were on their backes, their coffers were full of sil­uer, gold and pearle, their dishes were filled with dainties, their gar­ners with graine, their stawles with fatlings, and their Orchards with all manner of fruit, their gardens and fields diaperde with all variety of fruites, they felt neither sinne with­in, nor sorrow without, no wonders in heaven aboue, or tokens in the earth beneath, bloud and fire, and the vapour of smoake were vnneath seene, and therefore no marvell if they put farre away the evill day, and suncke in their security.

When Israel was full, then shee kicked against the Lord, and her sin increased as the signes decreased, til tokens from the Lord had taught [Page 8] her another discipline, the vapour of smoake blasted her garland, when it was at the greenest, famine, sword, & fiery Serpents, brake her heart to bet­ter obedience, and the Lord was mer­cifull vpon their repentance.

VVe thinke it goeth well with vs, when our waters keepe the course of their wonted Channels without inundations, when the North is clear and light without fiery inflamma­ons, when neither Sunne nor Moon laboureth of an Eclipse, we deeme the day blessed, when the ayre is pure, and the windes are still, when the seas are calme, and no thunder breaketh the cloudes; yet better it were if thunder-clappes from aboue did breake our hearts, and prodi­gies below plowed them vp for a softer mould, against the day of haruest, when the Lord shall come in the cloudes, with his fanne in the one hand to winnow all, & fire in the other hand, to purge all; the corn for heaven, and the chaffe for hell.

Moabs rest, was Moabs ruine: and [Page 9] surely, I could never yet see, but the world that flattereth vs, is more dangerous then the world that perse­cuteth vs, according to that periculo­sior mundus blandus quam molestus: It was said of David, by one who saide well, factus est securus devictis hosti­bus praessura caruit tumor excrevit: When he had no fight hee fell from his God, and the proud tumor of his lust, the lesse it was handled, the more it rankled.

The doctrine is good for the gene­rall, and so I will descend to a more particular vse of signs, & it may be to shew that he can be mercifull with­out means, the Lord will sometimes be silent, & shew no wonders, but passe vs like the sweet running waters of Shiloh, that goe softly by Sion, but when it pleaseth him for our loude crying sins to come in judgement, then wil hee swell like the turbulent waters of Iorden that run roughly, thē wil his signs & wonders bee harbin­gers of his wrath, warning vs of his neare approch, ready to destroy, if we repent not.

[Page 10] But to worke a certainety out of such wonders as the Lord hath wrought, either by himselfe in th [...] old Testament, or by his Christ in the new: It is to be observed, that e­ver vpon his comming to a worke of judgement, or a worke of mercy, there hath gone before him a com­motion of Creatutes to present his presence; for as I haue already saide, If when Kings of the earth stirre, the people are moued; shall the God of heaven rise from his rest, and the creatures sit still? I say, sit still be­fore his presence, in whose voice there is feare, and in whose face there is fire,Heb. 12. 19. for even our God is a consu­ming fire.

When the Law should bee divul­ged from the holy Mount, the Lord came from Sinai, Deut. 33. 2. and rose vppe from Seir vnto them, and appeared clearely from Mount Paran, and he came with ten thousand of Saints, and at his right hand a fiery Law: the ayre thundered, the hils trembled, burning, blacknes and darkenes were his pauilion, and [Page 11] so terrible was the sight which appeared, Heb. 12. 21 that Moses said, I feare and quake: It was a great day, fearefull and fiery, because of a fiery Law; what maruell then, if vpon the approch of so great a majesty, the earth shooke, & the heauens dropped at the presence of this God,Psal. 68. 8. even the God of Israel.

What should I say more of Isra­els God, sith at the brightnes of his presence, the red sea was diuided, & Iorden was driven backe, Quailes fell from heaven, and the Rocke gushed out water springs, the sunne stood still in Gibion, and the Moone in the vally of Aielan: Surely, surely, at the presence of this great God, the heauens and the earth shall shake, but the Lord will be the hope of his people. Ioel. 3. 16.

But leaue we them elder dayes, & come we to the later times mentio­ned in my Text; Nay, leaue we that God of Majesty, and come we to the God of mercy, euen to the dayes of Christ, who, when hee bowed the heauens, and came downe into our flesh, though hee fell vpon vs like a [Page 12] shower of rain vpon a fleece of wooll in sofnes and in silence, yet the hea­vens were shaken at the brightnes of his presence, whē at his birth Angels sung his lullaby, and at his death, all the creatures of God mourned his funerals.

To tel of the prodigies that fell out at his birth, and of the wonders that were then seene, I will bee the more sparing to speake, because out of ho­ly Writ little can be said thereof; yet if approued hystories may speake, & Chronacles of elder times, may bee admitted for Records of truth, that blessed Babe, euen in his birth, by signes and wonders was approved to be the vndoubted son of God, the Messias and Saviour of all the world. It cannot be denied which holy Writ averreth, Fulget in terris lux nova de coelo, And another star appeared at his birth, and Angels were heard to publish his prayses with glory in hea­uen, peace on earth, and good will a­mong men; yea, and to attend the presence of that blessed Babe, Kings [Page 13] came from farre to offer their gifts, Kings of Arabia and Seha they offe­red of their purest gold, and sweetest perfume; that which the shepheards heard from heauen keeping their flockes vpon the downes of Bethlehē, they preached to mē vpon this earth, and all these are holy wonders of ho­ly Record, shewing fignes from hea­ven vpon the approch of that blessed birth, whose breath, as some write, blew open the doores of that great Pantheon at Rome, I mean the Temple of all the Gentile gods, who vpon the birth of Christ fell down & brake their necks, as Dagon did before the Arke. I might tell how Divels were daunted at his comming, especially when the time of his appearance drew neere, and I will here onely mention two Oracles of Apollo concerning this matter, one to a Priest, and the other to a Prince.

A Priest of Apollo demanding him of true Religion & of God;Suidas in Thulis. answere was made out of the hollow vault, O vn­happy Priest, why doest thou aske [Page 14] me of God, that is the father of all things, and of this most renowmed Kings, deare, and onely sonne, and of the spirit that containeth all; Alas, that spirit will enforce me shortly to leaue this habitation and place of Oracle.

The other Oracle was to Augustus Caesar, Suidas in vita An­gusti. euen about the very time of Christs birth, who desirous to know who should raigne after him, would needs goe to Delphos, and withall learne what should become of things when he was dead; to which Apollo for a great space would make no an­swere, till Caesar had importuned him from sacrifice to sacrifice, till he came to the great Hecatomb: whē as it were enforced, Apollo vttered these strange words vnto him; An Hebrew Child that ruleth ouer the blessed Gods, commandeth me to leaue this habitation, and out of hand to get mee to Hell; but yet do you depart in silence, from our Al­ters: Whereuppon the Emperour standing agast, and musing with him selfe what this answere might bee, [Page 15] returned to Rome, Niceph. l. [...]. and built there an Alter in the Capitol,Hyri. c. 17. with this inscrip­tion, Ara Primogeniti Dei, by both which you may see how Diuels were enforced to leaue their habitations on earth, vpon Christ his dwelling in our flesh; his Incarnation was their execution, and they were enforced to howle & vtter out their own miserie. When it pleased him to swaddle vs in his mercy, and so with this merciful myracle of our Sauiours birth, went the miraculous mercies of our deli­verance from sinne, death, and di­uels: his blessed birth being attended vpon, as haue said, to the wonder of al the world, with these signs from aboue, and tokens below, harbengers of his most glorious and royal pre­sence.

From the wonders of his birth, it followeth wee came to the wonders shewed at the death of Christ, when vpon the effusion of his bloud, there was a cōmotion of all creatures high and low, in heauen and on earth, all grieued and groned to see and be­hold [Page 16] so dolourous a spectacle: The Sunne was darkened, and the Moone became bloudy, stars fell from hea­uen, and the earth quaked, rockes burst asunder, and Sheal was shaken; nay more, it was a day of darkenesse, covering all the land as with a cur­taine; when heaven was shut from it shine, and the graue was shaken, when that Kingdom of death and darkenes was conquered by Christ, whereby his death killed death, and by his life gained vs life with immortality: nay more, was it not a wonder to see how the vayle of the Temple rent, when mens hearts would not relent: In a word, the foundations of the earth were out of course; and what had that righteous one done?

Surely, surely, though the prodi­gies be past with the passion, & tract of time hath vayled it from our flesh, that wee see it not, yet can it never from a passionate faith, that it feele it not: for to this end hath God giuē vs the spirit of prayer and compassion (as saith another Prophet) that we should [Page 17] weepe because of him whom wee haue pierced, Ezech. 12. but woe is me to tell who is sorrie for the afflictions of Ioseph the yron of sorrow, entered into the soule of our Sauiour, & we are sense­lesse of his sufferings, if man will not be moued, thou earth, ye rockes, graues, Sunne, Moone, and Starres, pleade the cause of the Innocēt, and say, what hath the righteous done? Innocēt hands whom haue ye spoy­led? and yet are ye perced? Innocent heart, against whom hast thou Ima­gined euill? & yet art thou gored? In­nocent mouth, of whom hast thou spoken euill? and yet art thou spun­ged? gracious face, & coūtenance, vp­on whom hast thou lowred, and yet art thou spit vpon? head full of deawe, and lockes with the drops of the night, so wooing vs in grace, & now wedding vs in glory, how wer thy temples crowned with sharpe thornes, to the effusiō of thy blood? and yet are we senselesse of thy suffe­ring? we haue sinned, and he hath smarted, the Iust for the vniust, and [Page 18] if we will be silent still and say no­thing, to cleare the innocent, Sunne Moone and Starres, earth Rockes and Graues, will pleade the Lords quarrell, and say, what hath the righ­teous done? When the man of God came out of Iudah vnto Bethell, 1. King. 13. 2. and Ieroboam stood by the Altar to offer Incense, in reprehension of the kings Idolatrie, he cryed against the Altar, by the commandement of the Lord and said; Altar Altar, thus saith the Lord: Vbi alloquitur aram molliorem carde Ieroboam, where and when he spake to the Altar softer then the heart of Ieroboam.

The heard harted Iewes then, and we now, stand by the crosse of Christ, as Ieroboam did by the Altar at Be­thel we are sadned in our sinnes, and senseles of the sorrowes of our Saui­our, the earth, stones, & graues, are more passionate then we, they trem­ble, breake and open, at the death of Christ, our flintie harts are shut from all compassion, and we are a people of no bowels, and because we relent [Page 19] not, euen now the teares of the clowdes are in their eyes, and they drop downe shewres of raigne in greater abundance then vsuall hath beene seene, as more passionate then we, either for the sins of our soules, or death of our Sauiour.

When I am lifted vp an high, saith Christ, then will I drawe all men after me, and not men onely, but earth, Stones and graues shall open vnto me, woe is my heart, we are heauier then earth, harder then Rockes, more silēt then the graues, we speake not, we pray not, we praise not, we stirre not, at the death of our Redee­mer, he is lifted vp higher then euer he was, euen from the crosse of shame to the crowne of glorie, and we are pulled downe to all shame and Ignonimy with the weight of our sinnes; heauier then a tallent of leade.

If any man say, shewe vs his suffe­rings, and we will greeue with him, and for him, I answere, Dominus in monte verbum in alto, Christ is vpon [Page 20] the mountaine of his holines, his word is exalted here and elsewhere in the land, for what doe we preach other then Christ Iesus, and him crucified? And doth it drawe all men after it? The vaile of this Temple, these stones in the pillars, this holie ground and dead graues shall stand vp in iudgement one day against this people, that they haue beene more prest to heare, & passionate to feele, of the preaching, piercing and suffe­rings of Iesus Christ, then the men of this generation; for we haue piped vnto you out of the Gospell, and ye haue not danced, we haue mourned vnto you out of the Law, and ye haue not lamented. But when wis­dome is iustified of her children, then shall ye finde it no wisedome, but extreme madnes and folly, to haue haunted the Tauernes, follow­ed your pleasures, prophaned the Sabaoths, sold Christ at a lower rate then euer Iudas did, not for thirtie pence, but for a penny shot, a good­ly price whereat he is valued, and e­uen [Page 21] then alas, when Christ is in preaching and agonizing ouer the cuppe of bitter affliction; Nay, the Queene of the South shall stand vp in that great day, so shall the men of Niniuie, and the one shall condemne vs, in that they repented more spee­dily, and the other that she came more readily to heare the wisdome of Salomon, then euer yet we did, to heare the wisdome of Christ.

The vse is good, of all I haue said, to strike a Selah with our soules, in cau­tion of our former & future sinning, procuring prodigies, signes, and wonders, at Christ his death, and our redemption, for if one sin of Achan endangered all the campe, and if one sinne of Dauid plagued all Israel, what maruell then, if when all the sinnes of all the world lay so heauily vpon our Christ, and pressed him downe to death, there was a commotion of all the creatures of God, to see and behold so dolorous a spectacle: as when the sonne of God gaue his sacred soule, a sacrifice for our [Page 22] sinnes, who had no shelter but in the graue, for that opened to giue him passage, when the vaile of the Tem­ple rent, and denied him sanctuarie.

And now spare we a while to passe from these prodigies at Christ his birth, and death, to the wonders were wrought sithence, euen downe to our disasterous daies, whereby we may gather the neare approach of Christ his second comming to iudg­ment. The thought wherof so frigh­ted Iob in his frailtie,Iob. 14. 13. that he wished the graue might be his couer, till the griefe thereof was past.

I might tell of that great day, and it was the Lords day, when hee mightily declared himselfe to be the sonne of God, by the resurrection from the dead, and what maruell then, if vpon the approach of so glo­rious a presence, Sheal was shaken, graues were opened, and dead bodies did rise with him, and appeared vnto many in the holy citie, to the great wonder of all the world. And I might tell of that great day, and it was the [Page 23] Lords day, when at that high feast of penticost, the holy Ghost appea­red in a visible signe, and was pow­red downe from God, and fell vpon his Apostles in so great abundance, what maruell I say, if vpon the ap­proach of so powerfull a spirit, and presence, sounds from heauen, fil­led their eares like the rushing of a mightie wind, fiery clouen tungs fil­led their eyes, and mouths, to speake magnalia dei, to all nations vnder heauen, I say what meruell if feare with an astonishmēt filled their eyes, eares and hearts, when the Lord was about a worke of so great wonder, I leaue these holy wonders to the leaues of holy writ, wherein you are daily exercised, and by your holy patience I will follow the streame of some such signes as sithence haue fallē out, shewing a presence in God prepared to punish, without passion in man to preuent the danger by speedie repentance.

Memorable is the destruction of Ierusalem by Tytus and Vespatian, 40. [Page 24] yeares after Christ his painefull passion, who prophecied of their ruine, because they repented not, nor did, or would know the day of their visitation, she would acknowledge no presence of the Lord in mercy, and therefore must feele the pre­sence of her God in iudgement, yet not without prodigies, signes, and wonders, as harbingers of his wrath; whereof Iosephus writeth much,Lib. 7. and more then I can now stand to re­late, Cap. 12. being preuented with time, but reade his booke de bello Iudaico, and there ye shall find▪ how first, a blasing Starre was seene in the ayre like vnto a sword hanging ouer the Citie, for more then a whole yeare together, threatning nothing lesse then fire and desolation, for their bloodie sinnes, the blood of the Prophets, and of that Iust one, crying ven­geance to God in heauen, against that bloodie Citie.

2. Againe, at the feast of vnlea­vened bread in a great assemblie of people, and at nine of the clocke [Page 25] in the night, a bright light was seene in the Temple shining, and so continued for the space of halfe an houre, In token, that because they had quenched the holie lamps, and put out the light of the world, therefore the glorie of that house should be of no continuance.

3. Thirdly, at the same feast, and in the day time, when the High Priest was offering an Heyfer for the Sacrifice, she brought foorth a Lambe in the midst of the Temple, In signe, that though they thought they had killed that Lambe of God that taketh away the sinnes of the world, and that Moses should still haue liued when Christ was dead, yet should they see with their eyes, that the truth should rise out of that type, and when the Heyfer was slaine, yet the Lambe should liue; yea, and that very Temple, stones and all, should turne to Greet, Ne populus redirit ad Iudaizmum, Lest the people might goe backe to Iu­daizme.

[Page 26] 4. Fourthly, nay yet more the great Brason doore as the Author saith, being at the East end of the Temple, which twentie men could hardly either open or shut at the sixt hower of the night flew open of it owne accord, shewing a new way and passage of Christ, to a better place and being, euen vnto a Taber­nacle, not made with hands, but pitched in the high heauens, ope­ning of it selfe, without helpe of any.

5. Together with these as Iose­phus writeth in the 21. of May, a gast­ly spirit, of an vnspeakable height and bignes was seene in the citie, a pregnāt prodigie of their iminēt de­solation, when Zim & Ohim, Skritch­owles, Fairies, & Satyres, did haunt their houses, and fairest habitations. 6. Chariotes in the ayre & armed mē fighting by troups amōg the clouds appeared throughout al the Land of Iudea, & marched towards the Citie with fearce Encounters, all presages of their future fall, by the furie of warre which was at their doores, and [Page 27] yet they repented not. 7. Nay more, in a solemn feast, when the Priests were assembled by night, as their manner was to sacrifice, they heard this voice Migremus hinc, migremus hinc, let vs get hence, let vs get hence: the won­der they heard sell from heaven, en­ioyning them silence, and a cessation from all legall ceremonies and sacri­fices now ended, both Priest, place, and offering, vpon the sole sacrifice of Christ, whom they had cruelly murthered, and therfore had need to be gone before the fire of his fierce wrath was kindled against that place, people and kingdome.

Lastly, and of all other prodigies to provoke their repentance, vpon the Lords presence & neere approch, now ready to strike, it was not the least which fell out in one Iesus, the sonne of Ananias, of the vulgar sort, who foureteene yeeres before the siedge, & when al was in quiet, peace, and plentie, this sonne of Ananias comming to the feast of Tabernacles, when the manner was, that the Prin­ces [Page 28] of the people should doe their de­votions to God in the Temple, so­denly he cried out to the wonder of them all, A voyce from the East; a voyce from the West, a voyce from the foure windes, a voyce vpon Ierusalem, a voyce vpon the Temple, a voyce vpon the Bride, and vpon the Bridegroome, a voyce vpon all the people: Thus night & day he ran through euery street, crying without thought of food, or regard of any; insomuch as when he was beaten by the mighty (impati­ent of the prodigie,) I say beaten to the bare bones, he neither shedde a teare, or shewed himselfe suppliant, but at euery stroke stil cried out, Wo, woe, to the inhabitants of Ierusalem; and thus continuing during all the time of the siege, and especially at their solemne feasts: At last, when the siege was at the hotest, running round about the walles of the City, without feare hee vttered the same voyce, and said, Woe to Ierusalem, was to the people, and woe to my selfe; At which last woe, Sagitta ictus occumbe­bat, [Page 29] wounded with an arrow, hee fell downe dead.

The vse is good, and for vs in the height of this our security, all these wonders and signes, euery man in­terpreted as the story saith, Pro sua li­bidine, euen as best pleased himselfe, some they neglected, some they cor­rected, some they contemned, donec patriae exidin, sua (que) pernieie eorum iniqui­tas confutata est, till their error with their wickednesse was corrected, with the destruction both of their coun­try and of themselues, they killed their Prophets, they beleeved not Christ, whom when they had slaine, and silenced, then was it time for prodigies to speake, and say, O blou­dy City, I dare giue remission vpon thy repentance, but I dare giue no rest vpon thy rebellions. Before the destruction of Troy, as Virgil repor­teth, Fatis aperit Cassandra futuris, era Dei Iussunec vnquam credita Ten­cris; Cassandra foretold it ruine, but could neuer be beleeved; she spake from the holy Oracle, but was not [Page 30] heard: Its a fearefull thing when the Prophets are despised; its more feare­full when their Prophesies are set at nought; but its fearefull aboue all feares, when fire is a falling downe frō heauen, that is, when we with our Prophets and prophesying prodigies speake, and wonders worke, and yet wee repent not: so it was with Israel, I pray God it bee not so with Eng­land.

To speake of the signes, won­ders and prodigies that shall be seene vpon the worlds ending; I dare not, I cannot, that feare and fire oppres­seth my spirits in the thoughts there­of: Et horret animus meminisse: my very mind and soule melteth at the heat thereof. And therefore hauing in some weake measure mentioned that dreadfull day heretofore in two other Sermons, I leaue it vnder a vayle, as Apelles did the imperfect portraiture of Agamemnon, father of Iphigenia, and come a little neerer home, euen downe to our dayes. Haue we no signes in heauen, or pro­digies [Page 31] in earth, to moue our repen­tance? Haue not the heavens of late yeeres strucke an alarum to provoke our prayers by vncoth signes, never seene before.

It is some 40. yeeres agoe since that starre in the North appeared in Cassi [...]peia, whereat the Astronomers stood agast: Surely, it was some star of Bethlehem, conducting vs to that Babe of Bethlehem, Non in cunis; sed in Cathedra, not lying swathled in the cratch, but advanced into his chaire of high estate, by a second birth of holy doctrine thē divulged through out all the world: when the Gospell should beget faith in more abun­dance, from the East, to the West, by North, and by South. I durst not thus presage of the effect of this star, were I not well warranted by the judge­ments of two worthy Divines, lights of this age, Du Plessis and Beza: who by that wonder in heauen, are bold to say, that the Lord hath prog­nosticated a second birth of Christ vpon the earth, by the preaching of [Page 32] the Gospell vnto all nations vnder heaven, neuer to bee backed by that wicked man,2. Thess. 2. 8. whom the Lord shall con­sume with the spirit of his mouth, and shal abolsh with the brightnesse of his com­ming, whereof these wonders in hea­uen are warnings on earth for all Gods children to bee prepared with our oyle, and our Lampes light to meet him in the cloudes, and so to bee caught vp to raign with him for [...]ver. And so to the next.

Not many yeeres after, and right [...]pposite to that in the North, there appeared an other wonder in hea­uen, a blazing starre both great and fearefull, threatning some dangerous event to the Southerne parts of the world, which the Affiricans in some measure felt, when the Kings of Bar­bary and Portugall were slaine. The cinders of that starre yet kindleth a combustion in the hearts of the two Kings of Marocco and Fez, nor is the flame extinct in Spaine, but yet burneth in the breast of Sebastians blood, against that of Castile. And [Page 33] surely, it may bee a warning to all Christian Kings and Princes of the world, to stir vp their zeale, and melt their coldnes to fight for the christ­ [...] an faith against the Infidels, whi [...] rather then they should liue vnco [...] ­trolled, the heavens will threate [...] their destruction by sheathing the [...] swords in the blood one of anothe [...] Chronicles made it an honourabl [...] [...] fight which christian Kings had and vndertooke against the Sarazens fo [...] the holy land. But the holy Sepu [...] ­chre is now buried in oblivion, an [...] the Turke hath tied it to his taxe and territories, whom while Christian Kinges should resist with all their powers, & fight for the christiā faith, they fall in faction one against ano­ther, and so spend and blend their bloods together. Surely, Domestica mala maiora sunt lacrhymis; these home bredde evils among christian kings, are greater than can be expres­sed with teares; & therfore I leaue it in the silence of my soule, and to the praier of al Gods Saints, that their sou­raignes [Page 34] may ioyne in a holy warre against the Heathen. And so I passe [...]o the rest.

That Mirabilis annus will never [...] forgotten, when the seas, rockes [...] shelues fought for England, and [...]ade vs so glorious by deliverance, [...] the wonder of all Christen­ [...]ome.

Nay more, I may not bee silent, [...]ow this our Goshen, and land of [...]ht, was sodainely turned into an [...]yptian darkenesse, when vpon [...] darke Saturday, neere hie noone, at what time vsually the Sun giueth out his fairest shine, a sodaine dark­nesse was over all the land, and so fearefull, as men were at their wits ends, panted in soule, left off al secu­lar care, & betook them to their best prayers, not knowing what would be the Issue, till the Lord againe, and ere wee thought vpon his mercy, re­moued the judgement. In token of our intollerable neglect of the light of his Gospell, whereof that gloomy day was a sure Sacrament, taxing [Page 35] our dim sight with his sharpe cen­sure, that because for a long season, the light had shined in darkenes, and the darkenes comprehended it not: he could if hee would remoue the candlesticke, candle and all, and put out the eye of faith, as hee had dear­ned the light of heauen. Nay more, and aboue al, I haue said to make the prodigie yet of greater wonder; it was observed by many, how during the darkenes of the day, all thinges were husht, and so still, as leaues stir­red not, beasts fed not, birds sung not, but stood agast as if they had beene filled with astonishment.

And you know how not long af­ter, this darke day, the light of Isra­el was put out fot a time, Queene E­lizabeth died, a dearne day to Eng­land, had it not beene presently re­payred with as cleare a light from Scotland, in whose Sunne-shine now wee walke, and sing still with solace the Songs of Sion in our owne land. It may be so sodaine a darkenes pre­senlty relieued with so great a light, [Page 36] was a Symball or Sacramenr of our Soueraignes, dead and liuing; two peereles Princes, both relieued with their desired lights; Hee of Eng­lands honour, Shee of heavens glory; yea, and we their Subjects delivered from that dark and dangerous night of Queene Elizabeths death, by the speedy arising, & luster of that mor­ning starre, our Soveraigne Lord the King, whose day wee pray, may euer dawne. It may bee some sharpe sight may censure me in the applying of this darke day, to the death of Queen Elizabeth: yet dare I say, and I hope with good warranty, that when godly Kings and Princes die, Quid ni mun­dus ipss defleret eum principem esse ra­piendum per quem duramundi istius rē ­perari solerent; So saide Ambrose of the death of Theodosius: Why may not this worlde deplore such a Prince to bee taken away by the violence of death, as by whome the dangers and difficulties there­of haue beene moderated.

Nay, hee proceedes further, [Page 37] and nearer the point I ayme at: Hoc nobis motus terrarum graves, hoc iuges pluviae minabantur, & vltra solitum caligo tenebrosior denunciabat, quod clementissimus Imperator The­odosius recessus esset è terris: This the great Earthquakes wee haue felt, with the continuall raine wee haue had, and a more palpable darkenesse than vsuallie we haue seene, haue denounced and threat­ned, that Theodosius a most milde and mercifull Emperour should de­part this world.

You are religiously wise to dis­cerne of what is said: when Christ suffered, the Soueraigne of all So­veraignes, there was a commoti­on of all the creatures: All were moved to see and behold so dolo­rous a spectacle. Earth quaked, rockes riued, the Sunne was dark­ned, and the Moone became bloodie, Starres fell from Hea­uen, there was blood, fire, and the vapour of smoake, before that greate and notable day of the [Page 38] Lord came. And what was Iesus of Nazareth, other then a King, then conquering our enemies for a better world? And what was Theodosius? Queene Elizabeth with all of their rancks and Religion, lesse than Princes in his stead, to tule in this world: And why may not the crea­tures of God condole alike vpon their dissolutions?

Next, it will bee remembred whiles Chronicles can speake, how the earth was bound by a prodigi­ous frost, to Londons wonder, when Thames was paved for cart and carriage, for horse and man, a­ble in one day to support a waight of wonder, and vpon the other dissolved into weake Water. It pierced deepe into the bowels of the earth; and to this day, the flowers, hearbes, plants and trees, (nay more, man and beast, fish and fowle) haue not recovered their decayed strength, but yet feele the effects thereof; all to warne vs of our chillerie zeale to God, more [Page 39] colde then the Isickles hanging at our doores: and strange it is, that so many Sunne-shines as haue beene since, and showers of Gods mercies still powred vpon vs, should not melt our frozen hearts to more speedy repentance, and provoke vs to prayer, with more deuotion.

I passe by many strange Eclipses, both of Sunne and Moone, more frequent and vniuersall than haue been of old: darkesome sun, bloody Moone, prognostications of our dearne light, and dead life in the Gospell of our Lord Iesus Christ: wherein with those glorious lights, the Sunne of righteousnesse seemes to bee vayled, as with the cloud and curtaine of our sinnes: Alas, and woe is mee therefore, wee are fallen from our first loue, wee worke not, wee shine not as wee did in the dayes of persecution, when fire and fagot fined vs for our God.

And the late inundations with [Page 40] vnseasonable weather in their extremities, as of cold, so of heate, windes and tempests, are nothing lesse then prodigies of an irefull God, to tell vs of the deluge of our sinnes,Gen. 7. 20. that of the old world, swelling but 15. cubits aboue the highest hils: this reaching from the nethermost hell to the highest heavēs. The crie of our sins, reacheth the heavens, and euen there worketh our woe, by turning them this yeare into brasse, to make the land bar­ren, and the next yeere dissoluing them into teares and showers, drop­ping downe for fatnesse, death and dearth: Quicquid id est timeo, what­soeuer it is, I feare our rebellions against God, will make a commo­tion of all his Creatures against vs, both great and small, Elements and all; never so much distempe­red as of late yeeres, that a man would thinke (but that God hath promised, That Summer and Win­ter, Gen. 7. 22 and the seasons, shall uot cease so long as the earth remaineth) the very [Page 41] foundations of the earth to be out of course, and which is more and worse then all I haue said, the armie of our sinnes may bring vpon vs an host of men from a far country, & of a fierce countenance, to tyrannize ouer vs, as it fell out oftē with the Iewes: as may be obserued in all the course of the scriptures, still as they sinned, God raised vp euer & anon one forraigne power or other to chastise them, till at lēgth the whole armie of their sins ioyned in one, that is to say, come to the height of all impietie, called frō a far country, an other armie, euen the fierce Romanes, who brought vpon them a final desolation. And haue we no reason to feare the Romanists? hauing so many of them alreadie in our bosomes, swarming in all places of the land, neuer more bold & cōfi­dēt then at this day: As I said before, so I say againe, quicquid id est timeo, I say no more. And so much out of my loue and loyaltie to God, my Prince and countrey, as a watchman, and by vertue of my calling, I may be bold [Page 42] to say, for Res est solliciti plena timoris amor. Loue is full of fearefulnes. Nor is it least in obseruance, though last in succession, which fell out in the Northerne parts of this kingdome, in Aprill last, and in the parish where I dwell, and haue my pasteral charge, witnes fiue hundreth more besides my selfe, who beheld with astonish­ment that fearefull spectacle. To wit, a dead childe, base borne, of lewd pa­rents, hauing foure leggs, and foure armes, all out of the bulke of one bo­die, with fingers and toes proportio­nable: which bodie had two bellies and two nauels forward, with one plaine backe,Buried at Standish Church in Lancastshire Aprill. 17. 1613. without seame or diui­sion, it had but one head, and that of a reasonable proportion, with two faces, the one looking forward, and the other backward: either face had two eyes, two eares, a nose & a mouth perfect, nor was there in the seueral members thereof, any blemish or disproportion saue in the moulding, the sexe was female, and the mother was deliuered but halfe an houre be­fore [Page 43] this strange birth of a perfect womā childe, which was baptized at our Church and yet liueth. To pre­sage what may follow, I cannot, nei­there dare I, lest I seeme disasterous; onely let it tax our mishapen liues, so farre degenerate from the sim­plicitie of the old world, wherein both virginall and coniugall chasti­tie, were prized with honour, where now with many it is almost disho­nourable to be honest. Iudah with Thamar left his claoke, to verifie his lust, but Ioseph with Potiphers wife lost his cloke to vilifie his lust. Many Iu­daes, fewe Iosephs in these adulterous daies, wherein men doe rather so­lace themselues, then sorrow for that sinne, of which I may say, Lex Iulia dormis? Nay Lex Iehoua dormis, O thou law of God? why sleepest thou? The many legges and armes may tax our vntollerable pride, and auerise, reaching heere, and treading there yea in robbing well nere all Gods creatures, to fil the belly & cloath the backe, with costly and garish sutes, [Page 44] madding the minde, and making bo­dies monstrous, might Iacob and Ra­hel rise out of their graues, to behold their children that tread vpon them, they could not but deeme them of a monstrous birth. Two mouthes taking in, & two bellies casting out, taxe our insatiable desire of belly cheere & drunkennes, exoticall sins, and neuer but of late, a staine to this English Nation, In philtris philistinorū Sampson fell, Et Ebrietas decepit quē Sodoma non decepit, Wine made him sinfull, whom Sodome could not de­ceiue. Lastly, two faces may taxe the world of palpable hypocrisie, diuel­lish deceit, & damned equiuocation: First, in vs Protestants whiles we say we beleeue, and yet do not liue the life of the Gospel we professe: where­in we doe but Sophisticate with the Lord, & equivocate with his Saints: for what auayleth it, a tōgue to speake well, with a mentall reseruation to do euill? Next, it may seeme to taxe the damnable doctrine of our Romish equiuocators, who are double faced to deface all truth, and to destroy all [Page 45] commerse both with God and man, whiles they say, Dafallere, da Iustum, sanctum (que) videri, Lord giue me to de­ceiue, and yet that I may seeme a Saint. Pyrrus & Vlisses, as you may read in Sophocles being sent to Lemno [...] to take from Philoctetes Hercules his arrowes; The two Legats aduised, by what meanes they might best wrest them out of his hands: Vlisses affirmed, it was best to doe it by lying and deceit: Pyrrus answered no, I like not of that, because I neuer vsed it, but alwaies loued the truth as my fa­ther and Ancestors haue euer done. Wherunto Vlisses replyed, ye when he was a yoūg man he was of that mind: but now being old, he had learned by long experience, dearely bought, that the surest way & best art in mans life, is, Fallere & mentiri. Many of this age are of Vlisses minde, especially the Iesuited crue of damned equiuo­cators: but true borne Israelites are of Pyrrus spirit: (great is the truth & preuayleth, is the sweete poesie of their profession, both in themselues, friēds, & families) yea & they resolue [Page 46] vpon the doctrine of their maister Christ, that the truth shal make them free: As also Quod non patitur ludum fama, fides, occulus, that eyes honours and othes, will not be ie sted withall. But to proceed yet further, and make vse of the prodigie, it is respectiue, how when the Prince was dead this birth was borne, It was in the Autum of the yeare, when Prince Henry that sweet blossome was blasted, with the dampe of our sinnes, and so as with this faire flower, fell all the flowers of the field, leaues of trees, and Roses in our garden, they would not flourish while Henry was a falling, but fel with him. Woe vnto vs that euer we sin­ned, so faire a Prince, so pious and so puisāt to fal in a day, was such a stroke as shooke the Cedars with the shrubs and might yet well beseeme our sacke cloth and ashes: but this base birth was borne in the spring fol­lowing, to tax vs, as with the growth of our monstrous sinnes, so to teach vs withall, that sithence the faire fea­ture of a Prince so well fashioned in [Page 47] his life, was so soone forgotten in his death, the Lord would tempt vs, with a prodigious birth for so vnualuable a losse: nor is it strange a sinfull peo­ple should be so threatned, because it is vsuall with God to punish our pleasures by contrarie passions, as he did the daughters of Sion, Isay. 3. 24. when in steed of sweet sauour: hee threatned a stinke, and in steed [...]f a girdle a rent, in steed of brothered haire, baldnes: in steed of a stomacher, a girding of sacke, and sunburning for beautie: & why not England, in steed of a Royal & religi­ous issue whereof we are vnworthie, with a monsterous birth and misha­pen broode, of that whore of Babel, whose Romish faith and faction the Lord he knoweth doth daily breed euen in the bowels of the kingdom, wherin there are but to many dou­blefaced, double harted, and dou­ble handed, fawning, stil vpon vs and yet threatning our destruction, both with eie, heart, and hand, could they but gaine the opportunitie. I speake not this to dismay any, but to charge [Page 48] vs of vnthankefulnes: for yet we are blessed with the hopefull issue of moe Princes, and with many drops of much royall blood, and by the grace of God, this strong gable of so many cords, wil neuer be broken if our sinnes burst it not, yet with this caution, that we repaire the ruines of this our late losse, with speedie re­pentance, and pray withall, that God would establish the remaine of our religious hope, for his sonnes sake, and Syons safetie.

O but he hath left a desolate court! I answere, as Ambrose did of Theodo­tius, Non sunt destituti, quos pietatis sua reliquit haeredes, they are not forsaken or left desolate, whom he hath left heires and successors of his princely vertues, Religion, puissance, pietie, and clemencie: the brightnes where­of will shine to Gods glory, and Eng­lands honour, so long as Chronicles can speake, and bookes be opened.

I might here obserue as many moe haue done, what presages fell out vp­on the fall of this faire flower and [Page 49] peerelesse Prince, how the two glo­rious creatures of God, both Sunne and Monne were troubled, the Sunne scarce seene of twentie daies before his death, the Moone opposed with a mightie Rainbowe, in the dead and and darkenes of the night, bended ouer that house of mourning where he died. I might tell how the ayre, earth, and clouds, seemed to be sensi­ble of his fall, and to condole his death, whiles strange windes, storms, and tempests, with continually shew­ers, raignes, and floods. Many darke daies, Clouds, and foggie mists, were vpon vs, to warne vs of our woe, as formerly hath beene obserued of Theodotius and Queene Elizabeth, before their deaths. Nor can I passe without passion, what fell out in the sommer before Prince Henry died, at Chattam. Where and when a swarme of Bees knit vpon the maine mast of that Royall ship, he had made for Englands defence, tellng vs, that ere long Angels foode from heauen, more sweet then Hony, or the hony [Page 50] Combe, should fill the soule of this Saint to glory and Immortalie: yea and swarmes of Gods holy Angels should come downe to fetch him from the maine mast of this earthly kingdome aboue the heauen of hea­uens, there to raigne with God and his Christ for euer. A blessed Bee de­deliuered from the sting of sinne and death, to the endlesse glorie of life and immortalitie, neuer to sin or die any more. Nay more then all I haue yet said,Amos. 3. 6. to make good that there is not an euill in the Citie which the Lord will not reuale to some of his Prophets, that Prophet who preached in the morning of his sicknes pointed from aboue at the period of his life, when he vttered that text and truth,Iob. 14. 1. Man that is borne of a woman, hath but a short time to liue, and is full of miserie. It was powerfull in the preacher, and passionate in the Prince, to bring him to the thoughts of his morta­litie.

And so my deare brethren, to con­clude and make vse of all these feare­full [Page 51] signes and prodigies, let all these together strike out an allarum to praier and repentance, yea, and to godly sorrow, neuer to be repented of: by the sweet perfume and priui­ledge whereof, soules are saued, and bodies deliuered from threatned dangers. And not bodies onely, that is to say, particular persons, but states and kingdomes are preserued from all malice of the creatures, be they neuer so implacable.

Are there monstrous and vntime­ly birthes? 1. Peter. 1. 23. pray to be regenerate and borne a new, not of mortall seede, but im­mortall by the word of God, that liueth and endureth for euer.

Are there fearefull thunderclaps making thy wild heart to shake like the wildernes of Cades? stand in awe and sinne not: common with thine owne heart in thy chamber, and be still: say withall, it is thou Lord onely, that makest me dwell in safetie.

Are the Sonne and Moone eclip­sed deficient in their light, darke and bloodie? The foole chaungeth like the [Page 52] Moone; So saith Siracides; and thou art changeable ô Christian, when by the motion of Gods spirit, thou begins to be religious, and by and by falles to be sacriligious, Sacrili­gium creatori committitur dum imbe­cillitas ascribitur creaturae.

And therefore its not the Moone that laboureth for her light, but its thou that labourest in thy sinnes, its thou that chaungest like the Moone.

O if I might say, we fooles chaunge like the Moone, for shee shortly returnes to her fulnes: we fooles linger our conuersation.

Illa velociter colligit quod amiserat lu­men: tu nec tarde fidem recipis quam negasti: The Moone doth speedily gaine againe her light, that she hath lost, we fooles doe hardly in any time recouer the faith we haue de­nied.

What should I say more: Luna defectum luminis patitur; tu salutis: The Moone suffereth but the losse of her light, thou of thy saluation. [Page 53] Grauior ergo tua quam lunae mutatio. More dangerous therefore by much is the eclipse of thy soule, than is the eclipse either of Sunne or Moone.

But it may be some man will say: doth neither Sunne nor Moone la­bour in the eclipse, doubtles they doe, and that continually. For we cannot denie but they labour with other creatures, as the Apostle saith, and grone with vs, also trauelling in paine together, vnto this present, desiring the day of their deliuerance out of the vanitie of corruption, wherein they are. Leaue off therefore to looke vp­on the defects of those glorious lights, vnles thou looke vpon the staines and blemishes of thy wicked life. For how is it possi­ble for the drunkard in his wine, the wanton in his lust, or the co­uetous man in his wealth, to looke vpon the Moone, and see the things that are in heauen, when he know­eth not rightly how to vse or dis­cerne of things that are on earth?

[Page 54] Are there new Stars vncoth and vnknowne? Doe they blaze in the heauens and moue thee to wonder, what may be the effect? Say with the Sages, and then art thou wise, vidimus stellam eius in oriente, &c. wee haue seene his Star in the East, and are come to worship him: him, not it: lest any man might bake cakes, to the Queene of heauen, & adore the creature, for the Creator. Yet follow it till it come to the place where the babe is: then leaue it, and offer of thy Gold, Myrrhe, & Frankencence: that is, when these signes in heauen, & prodigies on earth, haue brought thee to the sense of thy sinne, and sight of thy Sauiour, offer vp the sweet perfume of thy praier & praise, an euening and morning sacrifice vnto thy Christ.

Lastly, are there rumors of warres abroad in the world, or warres at home, woes and wonders, euen at thy doores, Hannibal ad portas, Is the enemie at thy gates? Are the Barba­rians abroad, and is the Turke in [Page 55] armes? Vibrans hastam in Christianos, breathing after Christian blood: de­sine peccare & ciuitas non peribit, cease to sinne, and the citie shall not be sac­ked. Quid fugis patriam si vis saluus esse tua potius peccata subter fuge si tu peccare deseris victus est inimicus. Why leauest thou thy country? nay rather if thou wouldest be safe, flee from thy sinnes, if thou leaue off sinning the enemie is conquered. And how is he conquered? Non Gladio Golias sed lapide, prosternitur: Goliah was not slaine with a sword, but with a stone out of a sling: that is to say, by power­full praier. For so saith Dauid, thou commest to me with a sword, and with a speare, and with a shield, but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of Hosts whom thou hast rayled vpon.

And thus you see how the Drum of deuotion, in the hand of Gods creatures, (though senseles of them­selues, yet sensible of our sinnes) hath stroken an allarum to praier. Now let vs smell to that sweet per­fume, and presse both the power and [Page 56] priuiledge thereof to saue, out of these words: It shall be that whoso­euer shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saued. But because I haue wearied you ouermuch in this, I will spare both my selfe and you till a further opportunitie. And so let vs pray: O eternall God and most mercifull father, &c.

The end of the first Sermon.

THE PER­FVME OF PRAYER. THE ARROWE OF OVR deliuerance in the daies of danger, when signes from heauen, and Prodi­gies on earth, are on vs to moue our repentance.

Acts. 2. 21.‘And it shall be, that whosoeuer shall call vpon the name of the Lord, shall be saued.’

SIgnes in heauen, and prodigies on earth (as I haue told you,) are no­thing else but drums of deuotion, prouoking our prayer, in the sweet perfume whereof, whiles we walke, the Lord will either deliuer vs from deserued iudgements, or giue vs patience to abide the fyrie triall, And therfore pardon me yet further [Page 58] to ceaze vpon your religious eares, and hearts, on Gods behalfe, and in tender of your saued soules. Pardon me to presse you to powerfull praier, thereby to make the Lord propiti­ous, ayding, & assisting, when workes of wonder, both aboue and belowe, doe threaten our destruction.

The wicked in that day shal wring their hands, rent their garments, teare their haire, and cry vpon the mountaines to fall vpon them: but the godly shall haue boldnes in that day, they shall lift vp their heads, and knowe that the day of their redemp­tion draweth neere: yea, & as it is in my text, they shall call vpon the name of the Lord, and be saued. I say, all such as feare God, shall feare no fire, but call vpon the name of the Lord and be saued.

Yet so, as the holy Ghost euer giues the gust, power, and spirit of prayer, without which it is no perfume, but a stinch in the nosthrills of the Lord of Host. And therefore as you may here see the blessed Apostle clearing the imputation of Drunkennes, both [Page 59] in himselfe, and the rest his associats, euen in the height of that high feast of Penticost, doth in ebriat the soules of Gods Saints, with a pregnant pro­phesie of the abundance of the spi­rit which should glad the hearts of the godly in the latter daies. So then I may safely say, that as the fire is knowne by it heate, the Sunne by it light, and the tree by it fruit, so may you by prayer, know whether the spi­rit of God be in you or no: As also whether ye shall be saued when pro­digies are abroad, wonders in heauen aboue, and tokens on earth beneath, blood and fire and the vapour of smoake. Much prayer, and much passion, is euer from a powerfull spi­rit, and it argueth a Royall presence of the holy Ghost for euen as: in wa­ter face answereth face, so in plea of saluation, spirit answereth spirit, Gods spirit answereth our spirit, that we are his children, yea and the insence of our prayer; answereth the perfume of his spirit, in which sweet ayre we are carried and breath vnto saluation.

[Page 60] VVhy then it may seeme, where there is much prayer, there is much spirit; where there is little praier, there is little spirit; and where there is no prayer, there is no spirit; and if who soeuer shall call vppon the name of the Lord, hath much spirit, and shall bee saved; it will follow that whosoeuer shall not call vpon the name of the Lord, hath no spirit, and shall not be saved.

And I cannot but wonder, that sith the vision is for an appointed time, and now is the time (euen in the latter daies, which are the dayes of Christ) wherein God hath promi­sed to power out his spirit vpon all flesh, euen the spirit of grace and com­passion, so as euery one should weepe a­part, because of him whom they haue pierced; And yet our praier should be so scanted, and our spirits so dull, as wee seeme to bee dead in our de­uotion. Surely wee dire the Deity with our sinnes, wee quench the spi­rit, wee grieue it; wee despite it, and therefore wee pray not, because the [Page 61] spirit breathes not.

Some few droppes of this hea­uenly fountaine distilled vpon the Patriarkes and Prophets of old, but the cundits of grace were neuer so fully opened as in these latter dayes of Christ, when with the effusion of his blood, hee vented out the abun­dance of his spirit, and powred it vp­on all flesh; and is it not strange thē, that men should so liue, as if they stood in doubt, whether there bee an holy Ghost or no; and in these last dayes of mans redemption, they should breath more weakly, and pray more faintly then in the first dayes of the worlds creation; when Abel was slaine by Caine; it is of speciall observation, that vntill the dayes of Enoch, men were silent in their deuo­tion, and cared not for their God, for then as it is in the Text, men beganne to call vpon the name of the Lord; Caines sinne had so corrupted Seths seed & sanctity, that till Enoch repaired the ruines by his holy profession, there was little prayer, little spirit, litle pie­tie [Page 62] in that world. It is said of Enoch, that hee walked with God, and was no more seene: Gen. 5. 24. It was his speciall privi­ledge so to bee rapt vp, else moe had followed after, but they wanted his spirit, his prayer, and the familiarity hee had with God; it was a bad world, for the spirit breathed not, and there­fore men prayed not.

When all flesh had corrupted their wayes, so as God looked down from heaven, to see if there were any that were good, and there was not one good, no not one; then mans wic­kednesse wallowed in the water of his destruction; Noah prayed, and hee was preserved, the rest called not vpon the name of the Lord, and therefore perished.

I might tell of Abraham, Isaacke, Iacob, Moses, Samuel and Ioshua, how plentifull the spirit was in them, and how powerfully they prayed in their dayes: yet from a sparing spirit which breathed but vpon few, besides their owne families. So might I speake of al the renowmed Kings of Israel, and [Page 63] Iudah; of inspired Prophets, holy men, and godly Matrones, down to the dayes of Christ, all of blessed me­mory, for feruent prayer, and fre­quent: yea, and from a powerfull spi­rit: yet limited to their peculiars, and as it were confined within the borders of Paleftine, till Siloh came, meane our Christ, the Messias and Sa­viour of all the world; who, as I haue said, with the effusion of his blood, powred out the abundance of his spi­rit vpon all flesh; I say with Zacha­rie, the spirit of prayer and compas­sion, that the godly might mourne, because of him whome they had pierced.

The Issue is sweet, and the do­ctrine is Orthodoxall, taken from the practises of the godly in all a­ges; neuer was it yet seen or heard, that euer man prayed, preached, or pray sed aright, but as the spirit gaue him vtterance. The holy Ghost is the holie guide of all our holy actions, it is the seasoner of the soule, and the moulder of all our sanctity; it is the [Page 64] mother of piety, and it openeth the doore to all true deuotion; where it breathes, there is the perfume of Prayer; where it breathes not, there is sinne in silence, without cry or calling vpon the name of the Lord, that they might be saued.

The creatures as it is in Paul, may grone, wee may grieue and sigh in our selues, waiting for the adoption, e­uen the redemption of our bodies, in the salvation of our so ules: but yet it is the spirite that helpeth our frailety, and so, whereas wee know not how to pray as wee ought, the spirit it selfe maketh request for vs, with signes that cannot bee vttered; for hee that searcheth the hearts, knoweth what is the meaning of the spirit, and he maketh requests for the Saints, according to the will of God.

If the Apostles could haue tolde how to haue prayed of themselues, they would neuer haue gon to Christ to haue taken out the lesson, nor said, Maister, teach vs how to pray: but [Page 65] they knew that the holy Ghost and he were all one, and therefore would fetch that sweet perfume from his blessed breath, they knew that grace was powdered in his lipps,Ps. 45. 2. because God had blessed him for euer.

Well then I say no more but this, to presse out this sweete perfume of prayer, to be practised of all with vnwearied diligence. 1. That there is an house of prayer, and the Lord hath purged it. 2. There is a day of prayer, and the Lord hath sanctified it. 3. There is an heart for prayer, and the Lord hath possessed it. 4. There is a mouth for prayer, and the Lord hath opened it. 5. There is a president for prayer, and the Lord hath enioy­ned it. 6. There is a premiū or reward for prayer, and the Lord hath giuen it, euen saluation to out soules: for so saith the text, It shall be that whosoeuer shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saued, Nay & if none of these were, yet because we are fallen into the last and worst daies of the world, wherein sinne was neuer so sinfull, deferued [Page 66] iudgements, neuer more doubtfull, nor Sathan so busie to bestir himself, for that he hath but a short time: It might moue vs to be no lesse feruent then frequent in prayer, and the ra­ther, for that wonders, signes, & pro­digies, harbingers of Gods wrath are vpon vs, yea Hanibal, ad Portas, iudge­mēt is at our doores: Oh, pray, pray, pray, neuer more need to pray.

But it may be ye know not how to pray, and therefore ye aske and haue not, because ye aske amisse, ye seeke and find not, because ye seeke amisse. For euery man seekes his owne, either of pleasure, or profit, but fewe the things that are of Iesus Christ: and therefore spare me, while I tender to your religious eares and harts, a modell of prayer, where after if you fashion your deuotion, ye may be sure, both to haue audience, and answere from the Lord.

1 Wherein, first consider the man­ner how to pray, which is your pre­paration.

2 Secondly, remoue the impedi­ments [Page 67] that hinder prayer, which is your pollution.

Thirdly, respect the incourage­ment,3 ve haue to pray, because of the premium and rich reward which is saluation: for it shall be that whoso­euer shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saued.

And first for the manner, how must I call, that I may be heard? how must I be prepared that I may make the Lord propitious, and readie to helpe in time of need? how may I make him to returne my prayers in­to my bosome, while I double my plaints within my brest?

I must first call in faith, for without faith it is not possible to please God: faith is the salt of the sacrifice that makes it sau [...]rie: it is the Star guiding, it is the piller of fire conducting, it is the hand reaching, it is the spirit brea­thing, a passion from vs more sweete then Incense in the nostrills of the Lord of Host. In my faith I haue full assurance that I shall be heard, answe­red, & obtaine my desires, for Christ [Page 68] so promised when he cursed the bar­ren tree, and blessed the batsome heart thus, Whatsoeuer ye desire when ye pray, Mark. 11. 24. beleeue that ye shall haue it, and it shall be done vnto you.

And Iames the Sonne of thunder, Math. 21. 22. be­fore the call of praier sent out the fire of faith, like lightning, before ye clap, when he said,Iam. 1. 5. If any man lacke wisdome, let him aske of God, which giueth to all men liberally, and reprocheth no man, and it shall be giuen him, but let him aske in faith, and wauer not, &c. Yea & Dauid was of this consort,Ps. 145. 18. when he sung to ye solace of his soule, The Lord is neare vnto all that call vpon him, yea to all that call vpon him faithfully. What should I say more, our faith is the victorie by which we ouercome the world, it is dan­ted with no difficulties, it passeth for no impossibilities, it extent reacheth far, euen from the nethermost hell to the highest heauens.

Secondly,2. as I must call in faith if I will be heard, so must I pray in humilitie, if I will haue answere: for he hath regarded the lowe degree of his handmaid, it was her virginall voyce, [Page 69] and in the humblenes of her heart she was exalted with her God. O its an excellent vertue, when honor is humbled, and humilitie is honored with the title of blessednes, as it was with Mary.

Iudeths humilitie pulled downe the Assirian pride, when powring out her prayer to God for the deliue­rance of her people,Iud. 9. 11. she said. Thy pow­er standeth not in the multitude, nor thy might in strong men, but thou O Lord art the helpe of the humble and little ones. Aron and Hur must hold vp Moses hands, lest he might seeme to be exalted in his owne strēgth. And when Hester the Queen was to deale with her God by pray­er, she put off her princely robes, but when she went to the Kings Pallace she put them on: to teach vs, that we may not deale with God as with men, for hee will be better pleased with our pouertie then with our pride: with our sackecloth and ashes, then with our silke and sables. I, and the child will goe alone, so said Abra­ham [Page 70] of his beloued Isaacke, I and my miserie will goe alone, so saith the humbled soule vnto his mercifull Sauiour. No plea with God like the pore mans plea, and to goe informa pauperis, is the best plea in heauen, though it be the worst on earth.

Thirdly,3. as the Lord must be cal­led vpon in faith and humilitie, so must he be applied with good zeale and affection: no perfume of prayer but from a passionate heart, a broken and contrite heart God will neuer despise, his eye and his answere is to­wards all such, according to that of the prophet,Isay. 66. 2. To him will I looke, euen to him that is poore and of a lowly trou­bled spirit, and trembleth at my words. Moses said nothing, and yet he cryed vnto the Lord, it was a passionate prayer, not from Laodecean lippes, but from a fyrie spirit, as with Anna when she powred out her soule be­fore the Lord in the day of her bar­rennes.

Dauids affection in his prayer, was much kindled with the oole of zeale, [Page 71] when he cryed vnto the Lord, it was more inflamed when he watered his couch with his teares, for the sinnes of his soule, but most of all battered when he rored within, for aflictions without,Oseah. 12. Iacob wept & prayed & fou [...]d. God at Bethel, Isay. 39. 14. So did good Ezekias when he turned him to the wall and wept, saying, Attenuati sunt occuli mei suspicientes in coelum, mine eyes are wea­rie with watching vpon my God, and I had fainted in my miserie, had he not turned to me in mercy, & said; I haue heard thy prayers, 2 King. 20 5. and seene thy teares.

What should I say more, Mardo­che in the midst of the citie, cryed to God with a great crie and a bitter, and he was heard in that he desired: so was Christ vpon the tree, when greeued in soule, he washed away our staines in blood & teares. It was Au­gustines sorrow, when thinking vpon his vaine passions, he said, flebam Di­donem morientem ob amorem Aeneae, I wept for Dido, dying for the loue of Aeneas. but alas and woe is me ther­fore, I seldome wept for my Sauiour [Page 72] dying for my sinne, nor yet for my selfe liuing in my sinne. Surely teares and prayers are church wea­pons, and I may conclude as Ambrose did with Monacha Augustines Mother, when she wept after his conuersion, vade a me ita viuas, fieri non potest vt fi­lius istarum lachrimarum pereat, Goe from me thou mournfull mother, and doe as thou doest, it can neuer be that a son of all these teares should euer perish So dare I say of the Saints of God, sorrowing & weeping, either for their owne sinnes or others, it can not be that children of al these teares should euer perish.

I passe to the fourth,4. which is from our feruencie in prayer, to our fre­quent and often praying, thereby to importune ye Lord, to be propitious, euer wrastling as Iacob did, and neuer leauing him without a blessing. Nor as it is in the Prophet,Isay. 62. 7. giuing him no rest till he repaire our ruines: for the kingdome of heauen suffereth vio­lence, and the violent catch it, yea and the Lord is ours by much in­treatie, as we are his by many allure­ments. [Page 73] O that our prayer were with more assiduitie, much and continual, as euer needing, & therefore alwaies begging. Eliah when he prayed for raine, sent his seruant seauen times to see if ye Lord would answere his sighs with a shewer,1. King. 18. 43. 44 from the top of Carmell he crowched vnto the earth, and put his face betweene his knees, I say seuē times he prayed with passion, and the Lord was propitius, he fainted not, but con­tinued crying, til the clouds dropped downe fatnes, he prayed with pas­sion, while the king was at his repast, Ahab in his chamber eating, but E­liah vpon Carmel praying. Iob must fast & pray, all the while his children did feast and play, his prayers, his teares, and his sacrifice still went out, as the daies of their banqueting went about:Iob. 1. 5. for so saith the text, thus did Iob euery day: Darius sealed ye decree, and Daniel dread it not, but continued his prayer, and was instant with God, three times a day vpō his knees with his face towards Ierusalem, Dan. 6. 10. and his windowe open that way: both to stir vp himselfe with the remembrance [Page 74] of Gods promise to al such as should pray towards that house. As also that all might see, he dread no dan­ger of the Lions denne, but had ra­ther die ten thonsand deathes then yeeld to their Idolatrie.

And surely,Ps. 55. 17 Dauid was much in prayer, when hee said, Euening and morning, and at noone day will I pray, & make a noise, and he will heaere me. So Paul, 1. Thes. 5. 17 when hee said, in prayer often, it was his dayly exercise, and what hee practised himselfe, he preached to others, when hee said, pray conti­nually.

Fifthly, as our prayers must bee often in respect of times: so must they not bee limitted in regard of places, whether in the great congre­gation, and in publike, or abroad in the field, lesse publike, or in private at home, when thou art shut in thy closet, and art still, there is a christian liberty, and freedome in all, so thy deuction bee done without schisme, and separation; for thou art not one­ly tyed vnto the Temple, but thy chamber, field, and garden, the moū ­taines, [Page 75] dales and wildernesse, dennes, caues, and hollowes of the earth are sacred for thy devotions.

When Iacob prayed against Esau his brother, in that his dangerous peregrination to Bethel, hee diuided himselfe from his family, that hee might the nearer bee ioyned to God in his praier, hee sent his two wiues, and his eleuen children ouer the [...]i­uer Iabbocke, with all hee had; and when himselfe was left alone, there wrastled with him a man to the daw­ning of the day; he alone a Saint, and in secret, wept and prayed, and found God at Bethel.

Moses meditations were mentall, secret, and silent, when alone he cri­ed to God, and yet saide nothing. And Dauid a part made his prayer for the adulterous child, when groue­ling vpon the ground, hee grieued and groned alone; Demissa turba as­cendit Iesus in montem solus orare. And Peter at Ioppa prayed apart, when in an higher roome he fel into a trance, and prayed so long,Act. 10. 9 10. that hee langui­shed, yet saw the vision, and heard the [Page 76] voice that filled his soule with so­lace; Iud. 8. 5. I might tell of Iudith her Cell, and secret, when shee made her tur­ret a temple to pray in. All is but this as Bazil saith, Oratio secretū postulat, Soules would be secret in their sanc­titie, and from euery place, there is a passage to his presence. The temple, the street, the chamber, the orchard, field, and wilde desart, the mountain, dales, and wildernes, the dungion, denne, and dunghill, are Sanctuaries to Gods Saints, are sacred for all our prayers, prayses, and passages, to God in the day of our affliction.

Thus haue I told you how to pray, that yee may bee heard, how to call, that yee may bee answered. It now remaineth, wee beware of such im­pediments, lets, and hindrances, as diuide betwixt God and vs, making the Lord lesse gracious in heaven, by how much more graceles wee are on earth. And so we come to the second part.

Now that which letteth first,2. Part, & first impe­diment. is the sinne of not hearing the word. That [Page 77] wickednesse is the first wall, or parti­tion; that beateth backe prayer, the arrow of our deliuerance: I say, wic­kednesse, as in them that pray, so in them that are prayed for. It must bee purged from both, before the Lord will either heare or answere; Iu­stified by that of Salomon: Pro. 1. 14. Because I have called & yee refused, I haue stret­ched forth my hand, and none would re­gard, I will laugh at your destruction, and mocke when your feare commeth. VVhere, and if yee read on, yee shall finde, how such impietie stoppeth all passage to God, his care frō hearing, his hand from helping, his speech & presence from all reliefe; Then shall they call mee, saith wisdom, but I wil not answere, they shall seeke mee earely, but they shall not finde me, because they hated knowledge, and did not choose the feare of the Lord.

A wofull warning to all such, as eyther neglect, despise, or trample vnder foot the blood of the covenāt, I meane all such as are weary of the word of God, and despise preaching, [Page 78] they shall call, and not be heard; they shal crie, and not bee answered; nay, that which is wel worse, and yet more dolourous,Pro. 28. 9. He that turneth away, his eare frō hearing the Law, euen his praier shall be abhominable. Some thinke they please God if they pray & heare not, they must bee warned, they pe­ster not the Lords presence with so stinking a breath, in stead of more sweet perfume, and while they would make themselues acceptable to God for their much praying, they be­come not abhominable for their sel­dome hearing; they thinke to bee heard, saith our Sauiour, for their much babling; as and if hee should say, correcting that error; nay rather, they shall bee answered for their di­ligent hearing.

Secondly, as the eare must bee prepared for hearing,A second impedimēt that our pray­ers may haue passage; so must wee lift vp pure hands to God, that wee may haue audience; for a good life must lead a good praier, according to that, Oratio nisi bona vita praecedat non [Page 79] exauditur: or at least, [...]hey must goe together without distraction; for as one hath well said, qui rectè nouit orare rectê nouit viuere, Hee that can tell how to pray well, knoweth how to liue well.

God by the Prophet taxeth Isra­el of great impietie, in that their declining estate, and therefore would endure no entreaty, Isaih 1. 15 &c. but vpon their conformity. When you shall stretch out your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you, and though you make many prayers, I will not heare, for your hands are full of blood: but wash you, make you cleane, take away the euill of your workes from before your eyes, cease to doe evill, learne to doe well seeke iudgement, relieue the oppressed, iudge the fatherlesse, and de­fend the widdow: Then come, and let vs reason together, saith the Lord, though your sinnes were as crimson, they shall bee white as snow, though they were red like skarlet, they shall be as wooll.

The same Prophet from the same God, and to the same people, yet fur­ther presseth Israels impietie against [Page 80] the Lord, whereby hee seemeth lesse placable, whilest they charge him of impotency, that he cannot helpe, and of dulnesse that he cannot heare: but he yeelds them a more solide rea­son of his restraint, euen their wic­kednesse, the wall of separation that keepes them asunder: For, Behold saith the Prophet,Isaiah. 59. 1. 2. The Lords hand is not shortned that hee cannot saue, neither is his eare heauy that it cannot heare: but your iniquities haue separated betweene you and your God, and your sinnes haue hid his face from you, that hee will not heare.

Sinnes? and what sinnes? reade the wordes that follow, sinnes of Israel then, sinnes of England now: what marvell then, if wee pray and speed no better then Israel then did; for if wee blend in sinne with Israel, why should wee not blend in judge­ments with them?

And these are the sinnes of Israel and Iudah, wherewithall they are charged, ô that our English Iudah were well discharged of them. Your hands [Page 81] saith God by the Prophet, are defi­led with blood: crueltie is in your waies, your fingers are full of iniqui­tie, they receiue bribes, and are nim­ble to spoyle.

Your lippes speake lies, who can be beleeued? mel in ore verba lactis, fel in corde fraus in factis, there is hony in the mouth, but gaule in the heart, good words, but euill deeds.

7 No man calleth for iustice, truth perisheth in the streete, equitie can­not enter, and hee that refraineth from euill, maketh himselfe a prey. The Lord saw this, and was displeased with Israel, and yet their greatest va­nitie was in this, that they thought their day of sinning would euer downe, they dread no iudgement till it was at their doores, and fell vpon them. Thus infected my deare bre­thren with sinne, how should wee thinke not to be afflicted for our sin? how may we expect from the Lord either audience or answere, when we pray? Templum domini will serue no turne in this our temporising age, if [Page 82] our sins make a separation betweene God and vs.

When the cloud of Israels sinne had shadowed the face of the Lord shining, Ieremiah laid downe his la­mentation thus.Lam. 3. 4. Thou hast couered thy face with a cloud, that our prayers should nor passe through. And it was the grea­test griefe that euer came to Sauls hart,1. Sam. 28. 15. when he said, sighing, The Lord is departed from me, and answereth me no more. Where if you marke the sto­rie, ye shall find how Sathan found him, when the Lord had left him, and when the holy Oracle was silent, the hollow vault at Endor spake: to teach vs, that if we will not know there is a God, we shall be taught that there is a diuell. Zim and Ohim wil haunt our habitations, and the witch at Endor will endaunger our dwellings.

A third wall of separation stop­ping the passage of our prayer to God,3. Impedi­ment. is the sinne of vnmercifulnes towards the poore: for as the wise­man saith,Prou. 21. 13. He that stoppeth his eare at the crying of the poore, he also shall cry [Page 83] and not be heard, vnmercifulnes to­wards the poore, was one of the sins of Sodome, and little doe I doubt but it stopt the passage of Abrahams pray­er, euen frō fiftie to tenne mercifull men not found in Sodome for whose sake the Lord might spare the rest.

The vse is good, I pray God the teares of the poore hinder not the prayers of the rich: many are oppres­sed, & yet are not pittied: we can goe to no pulpit, but they presse our harts to prouoke our speech, & all I can say is this, take heed, for as ye know, he yt would not giue a crum of comfort, was denied a drop of mercy, and not to pittie the poore on earth, it can­not but hinder your prayer in heauē.

Fourthly,4. Impedi­ment. if you long after audi­ence, and answere frō God, of that ye pray for, you must beware of malice, and picke out that poyson: you must forgiue, that you may be forgiuen: yea and which is yet more, you must pray for your worst enemie, that you may preuaile with your best friend. That friend hath well aduised [Page 84] thee as a friend,Mark. 11 25. saying, When ye shall stand and pray, forgiue, if ye haue any thing against any man, that your father also which is in heauen, may forgiue you your trespasses.

Ye aske saith a brother of the Lord, and yet ye receiue not, because ye aske a­misse, that ye might lay the same out on your pleasures: Its a foolish pleasure on earth, that beates backe a prayer from heauen: Its a foolish passage with man, that stops a passage with God. And so for conclusion of this poynt, be warned, that as you heigh­ten your prayers vpward, so you les­sen your sinnes downward. And with Siracides returne vnto the Lord,Eccl. 17. 23. and forsake thy sinnes, make thy prayer before his face, and diminish the of­fence.

Lastly, 5. Impedi­ment. as wickednes in our selues, and proper sinnes doe hinder our prayers: So when sinne is in those we pray for, it often stoppeth our passage vnto the Lord, and maketh him inexorable. As in Ieremiah the Prophet, when the Lord said, I will [Page 85] cast you out of my sight, as I haue cast out all your brethren, euen the whole seede of Ephraim: Therefore thou shalt not pray for this people,Ieremiah. 7. 16. neither lift vp cry or pray­er for them, neither intreate me, for I will not heare thee: Seest thou not what they doe in the cities of Iudah, and in the streetes of Ierusalem?

As and if he should say, exemplarie sinnes, shall haue exemplarie iudge­ments, for I will power my wrath vp­on this place, vpon man, and vpon beast, and vpon the trees of the field, and vpon the fruit of the ground: it shall burne ô Ieremiah, and thy pray­er shall not quench it. Nay, and as it is in an other Prophet,Ezech. 14. 14. If these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Iob, were a­mong them, they should not but deliuer their owne soules by their righteousnes saith the Lord God.

All I haue said is but this, if our pray­ers be not heard, it is quia petimus 1. indigné 2. indigna, 3 pro indignis: either the thing is vnlawfull we pray for, or we are vnworthie, who pray, or they for whom we doe pray. The mother [Page 86] of Zebedes childrē, had not her boone at the hands of Christ, for that her de­mand was not lawfull. Esau had not that he prayed for, because he was vnworthie. And if you poure out ten thousand praiers, either for the diuels or damned, ye shall not be heard, for their sinnes are gone before them, to their iust condemnation.

And here spare me a while, and I hope it shall not be vnprofitable to the further sanctifying both of your will and skill in prayer, if I lay downe certaine Rules whereby you may know how diuersly ye Lord doth an­swere the requests of his Saints, & yet all to their endlesse comfort, if they can but be patient of his answeres.

1 And first obserue, and you shall find it to be true, that God heareth some, ad voluntatem & non ad vtilitatem, he answereth their pleasure, but not their profit, what they would haue, but not what they should haue. As when the people lusted after flesh in the wildernes, and loathed Manna, God gaue them their fill, yet while [Page 87] the flesh was betweene their teeth,Numb. 11 10. 30. & before it was chewed, the wrath of the Lord was kindled against the people, & the Lord smote the people with an exceeding great plague, in so much as the place of their buriall is called vnto this day,1. Sam. 8. 6. 7. kibroth hattauah, graues of lust. Againe, it was their desire to haue a king like other nations,Deut. 17. 14. wher­vnto ye Lord yeelded, yet told them it had beene better for them if they had not forsaken him, but kept him still their guidon. The vse is good a­gainst all such as pray for nothing but for the pleasures, and profites of this world, beautie, wealth, and plod­ding wit, which oftentimes God put­teth into their hands, like a sword in­to the hands of a lunatike man, wher­withall he endangereth himselfe, and so, the Lord answereth all such, ad voluntatem & non ad vtilitatem.

The second rule is religious too,2 & much to the solace of Gods Saints, who often heareth, and answereth, ad vtilitatem non advolūtatem, answereth I say our profit, and not our pleasure. As he did Paul, who praying thrice, [Page 88] that Sathans buffettings, which were the prickes of the flesh, might be ta­ken from him: Christ answered, no Paul not so:2. Cor. 12. 7. my grace is sufficient for thee, and my power is made perfect through thy weakenes. And this made the Saints of God to reioyce in no­thing more then in the crosse of Christ, where by the world was cruci­fied vnto them, and they vnto the world, they reioyced in their infir­mities, anguish, and persecutions, though buffettings of Sathan, and prickes of the flesh, yet purging fire fyning them for their God, whiles they were resolued that all the afflic­tions in this world, were neuer wor­thy of that glorie which should be reueiled, and all such the Lord doth answere, ad vtilitatem non ad volunta­tem, whiles they seeme to shrinke vn­der the burden of their afflictions.

The third rule is not irregular with God, who for the most part 3 doth answere all his Elect children, ad voluntatem & ad vtilitatem, making them glorious by deliuerance in the [Page 89] daies of their afflictions, answering their pleasure with their profit, and what they should, with what they would, as he did the Niniuites, when he deliuered them from their de­structiō. The woman of Sirophenishia from her diuell, the children from the fiery furnance, Lazarus from the graue, and Christ from his crosse, yea and all his Elect from death and doome, when they shall meete him in the cloudes, and be caught vp to raigne with him for euermore, with palmes in their hands, in signe of victorie, and crownes vpon their heads, in signe of glory.

Lastly, and not the least to our 4 comfort, read and you shall find, how oftentimes and for the most part, the Lord doth answere vs according to that we should aske, and not accor­ding to that we doe aske: as he did Ia­cob, who sought a leader to Haram, and God shewed him a ladder to hea­uen. And Saul who sought his fathers asses, & found a kingdome: the Ma­ries sought Christ dead, but they found him risen, And that Saint at [Page 90] Sychar sought but puddle water at Ia­cobs well, but she found, & went away with the water of life. Surely the rule is true, vberior gracia quam precatio, Gods grace is more abounding then either we can desire or deserue, the theefe vpon the crosse craued but a memento when Christ should come into his kingdome, and he had a pro­mise euen that day, of a perpetuitie in paradise. To iustifie that I haue said, Vberior gracia quam precatio, and therefore pray with good hope to be heard, be your prayers neuer so ma­ny, powerfull, or piercing, yet shall ye find his grace wil be euermore aboū ­ding, brimfull, and flowing ouer.

I may not be long, and therefore 5 passe to the last part of the text, which is the reward, crowne, and diadem of our prayer, bossed with many bles­sings from the Lord, more precious then the Carbuncle, Topas, or Chriso­lite. And seldome haue you heard or read of a powerfull prayer from an holy heart, without remuneration frō the Lord: for as you here see, in­uocation is crowned with saluation. [Page 91] It shall be, that whosoeuer shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saued: who euer prayed and found not the Lord propitious? who euer made intrea­tie vnto his God, and had not a bles­sing returned into his bosome?

It is said of Augustus Caesar, that ne­uer suter departed from him discon­tēted: & that Titus Suetonius thought the day lost wherein he did not good to some. A milder & more mercifull Sauiour is here then all the Caesars clapt in one, euen our good God, cal­led Deus a dando, God in creating, but good in giuing, for who hath gone from him discontented? who hath trusted in him and beene deceiued? Come vnto me all ye that trauell, and be heauie loaden, & I will ease you: it is his gracious call, Be of good comfort my lit­tle flocke, it is your fathers will to giue you a kingdome, it is his glorious crowne, Aske & ye shall haue, seeke & ye shall finde, knocke and it shall be opened vnto you, it is his irreuocable promise, at which the gates of heauen fly o­pen, and against which the gates of hell shall neuer preuaile: only wrastle [Page 92] with God for a blessing, till you haue wearied both God and your selues. The aduertisement is good from the prophet,Isay. 62. 6. Ye that are mindfull of the Lord keepe not silence, and giue him no rest till he haue repaired your ruines, and set vp Ierusalem the ioy of the world.

But what may be the different bles­sings we receiue from God by our prayer? and wherunto the Lord hath tyed himselfe by promise for the performance, not for our merit, but for his mercies sake? Surely they are many, and they are Remarkable, if you please to rancke them thus.

First, by the sufferage of prayer, all the creatures of God are sanctifi­ed to our vse: so saith the blessed A­postle, 1. Tim. 4. 4. 5. Euery creature of God is good, and nothing [...]ought to be refused, if it be receiued with thankesgiuing, for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. Stamped with the word of God vp­on the one side, and with the per­fume of prayer vpon the other, then is it a Shikel for the sanctuarie.

Our meate, our drinke, our corne, [Page 93] our cattell, our clothes, and lodging, our wiues, children, and families, our labours in our vocations, our King and kingdome, our Church and Common-wealth, nay our liues and deaths must be sanctified with our prayer, otherwise though the crea­tures be good in themselues, yet are we profane in the vsage. And there­fore our Sauiour when he had per­formed all to his death and passion, yet shutteth it vp with this power­full prayer, Father now the hower is come, glorifie thy Sonne.

As and if he should haue said, I haue prayed, I haue preached, I haue wached, I haue fasted, I haue cured malladies, and saued soules, I haue giuen life, and forgiuen sinnes, I haue done my fathers busines on earth, now let me be glorified in heauen, I pray for that which is past, that it may be sanctified, and I pray for that which is to come, that it may be glo­rified, Ioh. 17. 1. Father now the hower is come glo­rifie thy Sonne, &c.

Ierom, in his booke, de laudibus [Page 94] Bethlem, doth much commend the Christian carriage of that place and people; in the vsage of Gods gifts and creatures, euen from the Prince in his Pallace, to the Plowman in the field. Of whom he saith, Arator ad Stiuam semper aliquid cantat dauidi­eum, The Plowman with his stilt in his hand, doth still folace his soule with some psalme of Dauid.

And surely God speed the plowe were no bad prayer, when the labou­rer taketh the stilt in his hand, but I feare it is done of fewe: And if all our manuall trades were sanctified first and last euery day with prayer, and prayses for a blessing, they could not but prosper much better.

There is much pouertie in ye world, and it is no maruell, for that men worke not, yea but many worke and yet are neuer the richer: thats possi­ble too, for that men pray not, they spend their thrift in drinking, when they should bestow their time in praying: the creature is not sanctified with the word of God and prayer. In [Page 95] the name of the father, and of the sonne, and of the holy Ghost, is nei­ther fond begninng, nor foolish en­ding of all thy labours, blessed worke so begun, blessed worke so done, so it be said of conscience, and not of course, without hypocrisie in the heart, or superstition in the thought: surely such perfume is like the smell of a field which the Lord hath bles­sed, its sweet as balme, and therefore breake it: its fragrant as Myrrhe, and therfore vse it,Cant. 5. 5. euer dropping from the binges of thy heart, lippes, and hands.

A second blessing that commeth 2 by prayer, is the forgiuenes of sins, for by the sufferage of prayer sinnes are pardoned, couered & concealed: As may appeare by Moses his intrea­tie with God for the people,Exod. 3. 32. either to forgiue the trespasse Israel had commit­ted, or else to rase him out of the booke of life: he had his prayer, and the peo­ple were both spared, and pardo­ned.

Blood and prayer shall reconcile God and the people: for as the text [Page 96] saith,Leui. 4. 31. the priest shall make an attonement for him, and it shall be forgiuen him: Fa­ther forgiue them, for they wot not what they do. It was Christ his prayer vpon the tree, and he preuayled. And De­mitte nobis debita nostra, is our dayly prayer, and who doubteth of indul­gēce? Sathan winnowed, Christ pray­ed, and Peters faith failed not. Nay that I may shut vp this assurance, and close with your religious eares and hearts, who heare me this day. This man saith Paul,Heb. 7. 24. 25. because he indureth e­uer, hath an eternall priesthood, where­fore he is also able perfectly to saue them that come vnto God by him, seeing he euer liueth to make intercession for them. Marke I pray you, how grace aboun­deth in our Christ, a man of our mould and miserie, ergo, mercifull to saue. A God of might and maie­stie, ergo, able to saue, yet not with shadowes and Iterations like Aaron, which argued his imperfection, but once sacrificed for all, which made him an absolute Sauiour. And all this without limitation, either of time, [Page 97] place, time, or person to all such as goe to God by him.

Thirdly, as by the power of prayer,3 the euill of sinning is taken away, and forgiuen, so likewise the euill of punishment is often pardoned and & quite forgotten. When Abimelech had taken from Abraham his wife, and so endangered his state, life, and kingdome, God by night warned him of the wickednes by a dreame, and said,Gen. 20. 3. 7. Behold thou art but dead, be­cause of the womā which thou hast taken, for she is a mans wife, now then deliuer the man his wife againe, for he is a Pro­phet, and he shall pray for thee that thou maist liue: and if thou deliuer her not a­gaine, be sure that thou shalt die the death, thou and all that thou hast. You see the sinne, you see the danger, and withall, you see the meanes of deli­uerance from both. Euen Abrahams prayer powerfull with God, to stay the stroake of death from the king, and barronnes from euery wombe of the house of Abimalech.

When Sodome for her sinning, was [Page 98] to feele the Iudgement of God puni­shing, Lot prayed that he might shift to Zoar, O let me escape thither, is it not a little one, and my soule shall liue? to whom God answered, Behold I haue receiued thy request: also concerning this thing, that I will not ouerthrow this citie, for which thou hast spoken, hast thee, saue thee therefore, for I can doe nothing till thou come thither. Where marke I pray you, how prayer openeth the foun­taine of grace, and beateth backe the ocean of Gods iudgements, it moul­deth him to be mercifull euen to So­dome, till Lot be safe in Zoar, for so he saith, I can doe nothing till thou come thither: thy prayer hath manacled my hands, I cannot strike till thou be gone: hast thee, saue thee, escape thy life, feare and fire are a falling, see thou saint not, either in thy power­full prayer, or speedie passage.

Corath, Datham, and Abiram, with a rout of Rebels moe, stand vp against Moses & Aaron, Numb. 16. 41. &c. saying, Ye ha [...]e killed the people of the Lord: God sawe the sinne and hastned on the iudgment, [Page 99] when he said vnto Moses, get you vp from among this congregation, for I will consume them quickely. Then as the text saith, they fell vpon their faces. And Moses said vnto Aaron, Take the censor, put in fire of the Altar, cast on Incense, and goe quickely to the congre­gation, and make an attonement for them, for there is wrath gon out from the Lord, the plague is begun.

Then Aaron tooke as Moses com­manded him, and ran into the midst of the congregation, and behold the plague was begun, but when he stood betweene the dead and them that were aliue, the plague was staid. O blessed In­cense, blessed praier, blessed station, O blessed deuotion, so readily run­ning, to repaire the ruines of a dying, & decaying people, where fourteene thousand, and seuen hundred died, besides them that died in the conspi­racie of Chora: yet as you may there see by the sufferage of prayer, the rest were saued, and the plague was stayed.

Elephas as it is in Iob, vrged much [Page 100] the power of prayer, to deliuer from punishment,Iob. 5. 1. when he said to Iob, The Papists abuse this place to make good their prayer to Saints, which is spoken not of the dead but of the liuing Saints. call now if any will answere thee, and to which of the Saints wilt thou turne?

As and if he should say, to aggrauate his griefe the more, O Iob of all thy miseries this is not the least, that nei­ther thy God will answere thee, nor the Saints will pray for thee, whither wilt thou turne thee vpon thy tossed bed? if there be no passage for prayer in the day of thine affliction, whither wilt thou turne thee vpon thy tossed bed?

Let Paul conclude for all, to make good the power of prayer in this par­ticular of putting off the punishment of sinne, with deliuerance from dan­ger, when he pressed the people to pray for him. 1. That he might be de­liuered from the disobedient in Iu­dea. 2.Rom. 15. 30. 31. &c. That his seruice in the church might be accepted of the Saints. 3. That hee might alwaies come to them with ioy. 4. And that he toge­ther with them might be refreshed with the shewer of all heauenly com­forts. [Page 101] A needfull prayer my deare brethren, from you to God for vs, who are your Pastors, that we may feed you without perill, that our ser­uice may be accepted, that our pre­sence may be with ioy. And that drops of grace distilling from a­boue, may daily refresh our more then dying and decaying plants.

And here I might seasonably presse with Pauls perill, Peters deliuerance out of prison by the prayers of the Saints. Who when he was in durance, and imprisoned by Herod the king,Act. 12. 5. 6. &c. earnest prayer was made of the church vnto God for him, and pre­uailed, for euen there (as you may read) the praiers of the Church, ouer­turned the counsell of tyrants, ob­tained the presence of Angels, brake the prison, vnlosed the chaines, put Sathan to flight, and preserued the Church, yea and Peter too, when by the prayer of men, and conduct of an Angell, he passed away without peril, and was deliuered out of the hand of Herod, and from all waiting for of [Page 102] the people of the Iewes.

4 Fourthly, and lastly, as prayer is the arrowe of our deliueranc [...], [...]oth from the euill of sinning, and the euill of punishing, so is it piercing in procuring all good things for vs, from the hands of God.

For by it, the barren wombe is made batsome,Gen. 25. as in Sarah, Annah, the Shunamit, 1. Sam. 1. and in Elizabeth, of all which it fel out,2. King. 4. as it did with Zacha­rie, Luk. 113. when the Angell said, feare not Zacharie, for thy prayer is heard, and thy wife Elizabeth, shall beare thee a sonne, &c.

By it the enemie is conquered, as in Moses against Amalecke, of whom it is said,Exod. 17. plus fecit oratio mosis orando, quam Iosue pugnando, 1. Sam. 7. Moses prayer was more piercing then Iosuas pike.2. Chron. 20. 6. In Samuel against the Philistimes. In Iehosophat against Moab and Ammon. In Iudeth against Holefernes. And in Dauid against that Gyon of Gath, whē he said, what is this proud Philistim that he should reuile the Host of the liuing God, Thou commest to me with a [Page 103] sword, 1. Sam. 17. 45. and with a speare, and with a shield, but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of Hostes, the God of the host of Israel, whom thou hast railed vpon.

It would be too long to tell of all, but this is the summe, by the power of prayer, diuels are dispossessed, the dead are raised, maladies are cured, eyes are opened, tongues are vntied, and sinowes are losed, prayer fatched done fire from heauen, and it staied the sunne in Gibion, it openeth hea­uen, it shutteth hell, and shaketh all the powers of darkenes, it conque, reth God, it quieteth the conscience, it sacketh sinne, and to conclude, as it is in my text, it saueth soules, for it shall be, that whosoeuer shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saued.

These words are three times men­tioned in the scriptures of God,Ioel. 2. 23. to make vs the more attentiue,Rom. 10. 13. they are riuited with a stiddy hand, & a treble stroke, to make vs ye more apprehen­siue of ye Lords mercies, they are dri­uen in like holie nailes of the holy [Page 104] Sanctuarie, wheron t [...] hang our salua­tion on the daies of triall, when there shall be signes in the heauens aboue, & tokens in the earth beneath: blood and fire and the vapour of smoke: then whosoeuer shall call vpon the name of the Lord shall be saued And such priuiledge haue all his Saints, but the diuels & damned, shall either be silent & dum in the day of danger, or if they speake, they shall call to the mountaines to fall vpon them. The Lord God of spirits prepare vs euer to pray, and by that way and meanes giue vs passage into the pre­sence of our good God, there to haue both audience, and answere, for his sonnes sake, who hath saued vs from our sinnes, by shedding of his most pretious blood, thereby to redeeme the world of his Elect. To that God and Christ, with the power of the holy Ghost, proceeding from both, be all honour and glorie, this day and euer. Amen. Amen.


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