M. PERKINS, HIS EX­hortation to Repentance, out of Zephaniah: Preached in 2. Ser­mons in Sturbridge Faire.

TOGETHER WITH TWO Treatises of the Duties and Dig­nitie of the Ministrie: Deliuered publiquely in the Vniuersitie of Cambridge.

With a Preface praefixed touching the publishing of all such workes of his as are to be expected: with a Catalogue of all the perticulers of them, diligently perused and published, by a Preacher of the Word.

Prouerbs 28. 13.

Hee that hideth his sinnes shall not prosper, But he that confesseth and for saketh them shall finde mercy.

LONDON Imprinted by T. C. for William Welby, and are to bee sold at his Shop in Pauls Church-yard, at the signe of the Grey-hound. 1605.

To the right worshipfull, my very worthie and Christian friend, Syr William Gee, Knight, one of his Maiesties Honourable Counsell in the North, Recorder of the Towne of Beuerley, and Hnll, and one of his Maie­sties Iustices of peace in the Eastriding of the Countie of Yorke, a true friend of learning, and pietie, and to the vertuous, and religious Lady his wife. Grace and peace from God &c.

AMongst the many reasons (Worshipful Syr',) which haue perswaded mee that Poperie cannot bee the true religiō, this is not the lest: the in­sufficiency of their doctrin of faith & repētance: which two things though they be the chiefe & principal points [Page] in Religion, and so necessarie that he, who doth not, both knowe, and pra­ctise them aright, can neuer be saued yet I dare auouch, that the faith and Canitius in Cate­chisme. Costerus in Enchiridio. repentance of the Romish Church, as they are taught by many of the best approued Papists, are no better then such a faith, and such a repen­tance as an hypocrite, and a very re­probate may attaine vnto: Indeed, to insist vpon repentance onely (they make many faire florishes, they call it penance, they make it a sacrament, & say it is a boord that saues a man after shipwrack, and write great volumnes of it, and of confession, and of Cases of Corradus. Nauarrus. Loper Sai­rus. Hallus. Graffius, & many o­ther. conscience, (as you good Syr in your owne reading know better then I) & yet alas, when all is done, it is but a shadow of repentance; and indeede how can they teach aright the doc­trine of repentance: which erre so fowly in setting downe the iustice of God, and the vilenes of sin, which 2. [Page] points a man must know, else he will neuer repent: but Poperie miscon­ceiuing the iustice of God, teaching it not to bee infinite in as much as it needes not an infinite satisfaction, & misconceiuing the nature of sin, tea­ching euery sin not to bee damnable, [...] to offend Gods Infinite iustice, [...]ring (I say) in these 2. how is it pos­sible they should conceiue aright the nature of repentance? by which a man seeing his sins, their foulenesse their punishment, and his own mise­ry by them, confesseth them, bewails them, fearing Gods iustice, flyeth frō it, and craues forgiuenesse of his mer­cie, and lastly purposeth, & indeuou­reth to leaue them all, and to leade a newe life. The serious consideration hereof, hath often made me wonder, why many Popish treatises being in some sort exhortations to repentance should be so accounted of, as they are by some: for though I confesse there [Page] are in some of them, good and hole­some meditations, and many motiues to mortification, and good life, yet would I gladly learne of any man but this one thing, how those exhortati­ons can be pithie, or powerful, sound or any way sufficient to moue a man to repentance, when as, not those bookes, nor all Poperie is able to teach a man sufficiently what true re­pentance is.

If any man reply: I will therefore learne the doctrine out of the Protes­tants bookes, and vse the Papists for exhortation onely: I then answere, is it not a more compendious, and conuenient, and a lesse scandalous course, to seeke exhortations out of such writers, as do teach the doctrine aright? nay I doubt how it is possible to finde a powerfull exhortation to repentance in any Papist, who erres in the Doctrine: the reason is mani­fest, because Doctrine is the ground [Page] of exhortation: and if the doctrine be vnsound, how can the exhortati­on, be any better. Let vs therefore leaue these muddic puddles, and fet our water at the fountaine: the water of life, at the fountaine of life, I mean the doctrine of faith, and repentance at the written word of God, and at such mens writings as are grounded therevpon, and agreeable thereunto. Deering [...] Grenham. Bradford. and many other.

Now, amongst those many instru­ments of God, who haue laboured with profit in this great point of Re­ligion: namely repentance, drawing their doctrine out of the two brests, of the 2. Testaments of Gods booke, I may well say, (to say no more,) that this man of God Maister Perkins, de­serues to haue his place: whose la­bours, whilst he liued, and his yet li­uing labours, what they deserue, I had rather others should proclame, then I once name: who professe my selfe to bee one of those many, who [Page] may truely say, that by the grace of God & his good meanes principally, I am that I am: But leaning him in that glorious mansion, which Christ the Lord of the Haruest hath prepa­red for him: and now giuen him. I returne to my selfe, and doe humbly praise the Lord of heauen, who gaue mee my time in the Vniuersitie, in those happie dayes, wherein (beside many other worthy men of God, whereof some are falne asleepe, and some remaine aliue vnto this day) this holy man did spend him self like a Candle to giue light vnto others:

The scope of all his godly ende­uours was to teach Christ Iesus, and him crucified, and much laboured to moue all men to repentance, that as our knowledge hath made Popery ashamed of their ignorance: so our holy liues might honour our holy profession. And as repentance was one of the principal ends, both of his [Page] continuall preaching and writing: soespecially and purposely hath hee twise dealt in that Argument.

First, in his Treatise of Repentance: published 1592. wherein briefly (as his manner was) but soundly, pithily, and feelingly, hee layeth downe the true doctrine, and the very nature of repentance: and after the positiue doctrine, hee toucheth some of the principall controuersies and difficul­ties in that doctrine, but afterwards thinking with himselfe, that hee had not seriously and forcibly enough, vrged so great & necessarie a Lesson as Repentance is, therefore shortly after, being desired and called to the duty of preaching, in that great, & ge­neral assembly at Sturbridge-Faire, he thought it a fit time: for this necessary and generall exhortation to Repen­tance: to the intent, that as wee were taught the doctrine of Repentance, in the former treatise: so in these ser­mons [Page] we might bee stirred vp to the practise of it. And certainly, (Good Sir:) I iudge there could haue beene no matter, more fit for that assembly then an exhortation to repentance, for as the audience was great and ge­neral, of all sorts, sexes, ages and cal­lings of men, and assembled out of many corners of this kingdom so, is this doctrine generall for all: some doctrines are for Parents, some for children, some for schollers, some for tradse-men, some for men, some for women, but repentance is for all: without which, it may bee said of all, and euery one of age, not one excep­ted: No Repentance, no saluation

These Sermons being in my hands, and not deliuered to mee from hand to hand, but taken with this hand of mine, from his owne mouth, were thought worthy for the excellencie, & fit for the generallity of the matter, to be offered to the publique veiwe: [Page] I haue also other workes of his in my hands: of which (being many,) I con­fesse my selfe, to be but the keeper for the time, taking my selfe bounde to keepe them safely, to the benefite of Gods Church, of whose treasure vp­on earth I make no questiō, but they are a part: and I hartily desire you (my godly friends) & all other faith­full Christians to solicite the Lord in prayer for me, that I may faithfully discharge my self of that great charge which in this respect lyeth vpon me: and that his grace and blessing may be on mee, and all others, who are to be imployed in this seruice, wherein (had the Lord so pleased) wee could heartily haue wished neuer to haue bin imployed: but that his life might haue eased vs of the labour: and that as I begin with this, so I, or some o­ther better able (which I rather de­sire) may goe forward, vndertaking the weight of this great burthen, and [Page] not faint, till he haue made a faithfull account to the Church of God, of all these Iewels deliuered to our trust.

And now these first fruites of my labours, in another mans vineyard, as also all that hereafter doe or may follow, I humbly consecrate to the blessed Spouse of Christ Iesus, the holy Church of God on earth, and name­ly to the Church of England, our be­loued mother, who may reioyce, that she was the mother of such a sonne, who in few yeares did so much good to the publique cause of religiō, as the wickednesse of many yeares shall not Maister Perkings, but forty yeares old at his death. be able to weare out. But first of all, and especially, I present the same vn­to you (my very worsh▪ and Christi­an friends) who (I must needes say) are very worthy of it in many re­spects.

1 For the matter it selfe, which is repentance, my selfe being able to testifie, that you are not heares. [Page] but doers, ripe in knowledge, & rife in the practise of repentance, inso­much as I dare from the testimonie of my conscience, and in the word of a minister pronounce of you, that as you haue heard and knowne this Doctrine of repentance, so blessed are you, for you doe it.

And 2. for him, who was the au­thor hereof (whose mouth spake it from the feeling of his soule, & whose soule is now bound vp in the bundle of life:) I know and cannot in good conscience cōceale the great delight, you haue alwaies had in the reading of his bookes, the reuerend opinion, you had of him liuing, and how hea­uily and passionately, you tooke his death, and departure: therefore to cheare you vp in want of him, I send you here this little booke, his owne childe, begotten in his life time, but borne after his death: obserue it well and you shall find it, not vnlike the [Page] father, yea, you shall discerne in it the fathers spirit, and it doubts not, but to find entertainement with them, of whom the father was so well respec­ted.

And for my selfe, I spare to rehearse what interest you haue in me, & al my labours, it is no more then you wor­thily deserue, and shall haue in me for euer: you are the fairest flowers in this garden, which in this place I af­ter others haue planted for the Lord (or rather God by vs): And two prin­cipall pearles in that caowne, which I hope for, at the last day from the Lord my God, whose worde at my mouth you haue receiued with much reuerence, and with such profit, as if I had the like successe of my labours in others, I should then neuer haue cause to say, with the Prophet, I haue laboured in vain, & spent my strength in vaine, but my iudgement is with the Lord. & my work with my God.

[Page] And if I knewe you not, to be such as take more delight in doing well, then in hearing of it, I would proue at large, what I haue spoken of you: yet giue me leaue to say that, which with­out open wrong, I may not conceile, that beside your rare knowledge, and godly zeale to religion, and other duties of the first table to God him­selfe: your charity & pitty to the nee­dy distressed Christians, at home and abroad: your mercifull dealing with them, who are in your power; your beneuolence to learning, and name­ly to some in the Vniuersitie; doe all proclaime to the world those your due praise: which I (well knowing your modesties) do spare once to name: neither, would I haue said thus much, were it not for this cold and barren age, wherein wee liue, that so, when our preaching cannot moue, yet your godly examples might stirre vp. Pardon me therefore I pray you, [Page] and think it no wrong to you, which is a benefit to Gods Church: But goe forward in the strength of the Lord your God, & hold on in that happie Psal. 11. 16 Apoc. 2. 10 1. Thes. 5. 24. course you haue begun, bee faithfull vnto the end, the Lord will giue you the Crowne of life, faithfull is hee, which hath promised, who will also doe it: proceed (good Sir) to honour learning in your selfe and others, and religion especially, which is the prin­cipall learning; and proceed both of you, to practise religion in your own persons; and in your family: hold on to shine before your family, and a­mongst the people, where you dwell, in zeale and holinesse: hold on here­by, still to shame popery, to stop your enemies mouthes, and to honour that holy religiō, which you professe, to gaine comfort of good conscience to your selues, & assurance of eternall reward: and lastly, to encourage me in those painefull duties which lye [Page] vpon me: for I openly professe that your religious zeale and loue of the truth, with māy other good helps, are principal incouragements in my mi­nistry, & especial motiues vnto me, to vndertake the charge of publicatiō, of so many of the workes of this holy man deceased, as may not in better maner be done by others. But I keep you too long from this holy exhorta­tion following, I therefore send you to it, & it to you, and from you to the Church of God, for I dare not make it to bee priuately yours and mine, wherein the whole Church hath in­terest, as well as we: It was preached in the field, but it is worthy to be ad­mitted into our hearts: I found it in the open field, but vpon diligēt view, finding it to bee Gods corne, and a parcel of his holy and immortal seed, therefore I brought it home, as good corne deserues: And as it is Gods corne, so in you I desire all holy chri­stians to lay it vp in Gods garners, [Page] that is in their hearts and soules.

And thus committing this little volume to your reading, the matter to your practise: you and yours, to the blessed fauour of that God, whom you serue: and my selfe and my ende­uours. to your hartie loue, and holie praiers. I take leaue: From mie studie. August. 7. 1604.

Yours in Christ Iesus, euer assured. WILLIAM CRASHAVVE.

To the Christian Reader, and especially to all such as haue any Cop­pies of the workes of Maister Perkins, or intend any of them to the Presse.

FOrasmuch as there hath beene lately signification made, of diuers of M. Perkins his workes hereafter to bee printed, in an Epistle to the Reader prae­mised before the Treatise of Callings, and that signification being but generall, might peraduenture giue occasion to some, to set out some particulars (without the consent of M. Perkins his assignes) as im­perfectly as are these two bookes, intituled The reformation of Couetousnesse, and The practise of Faith, iustly and truly (for ought that I see) censured in the aforesaide Epistle: It is therefore nowe thought good, to mention the particular Treatises, and workes of his, which shall hereafter (if God wil) be published, for the benefite of Gods Church: I doe therefore [Page] hereby make knowne to all, whome it any way may concerne, that there were found in the studie of the deceased, and are in the hands of his Executors, or assignes, and preparing for the Presse.

  • 1 His Expositions on the Epistle to the Galathians.
    • 2 On the Epistle of Iude.
  • 2 His Booke of the Cases of Con­science.
  • 3 His Treatises,
    • 1. Of Witch-craft.
    • 2. Of Callings.

All these he had perused himselfe, and made them ready for the Presse, according to which Coppies by himselfe so corrected, some of them already are, and the rest will be published in due time: And hereupon we desire all men who haue Coppies of them, not to offer that wrong to that wor­thy man of God, as to publish any of their own, seeing the coppies hereof which are to be printed, are of his own correcting: but rather if they can helpe to make any of [Page] them more perfect by their coppies, they may therin doe a good worke to the benefit of many, and much comfort to them­selues.

And further, I doe hereby make knowne, that I haue in my handes at this present of his workes, taken from his mouth, with my owne hand, hereafter (if God wil) to be published, with the allow­ance of our Church, and for the benefit of his children, these particulars.

  • 1 His Expositions or readings, on the 101. Psalme.
  • 2 On the 32. Psalme.
  • 3 On the 11. Chap. to the Hebrewes.
  • 4 On the 1, 2, & 3. Chap. of the Re­uelation.
  • 5. On the 5, 6, and 7. Chapters of Saint Matthew.
    • 2 His Confutation of Camsius his little Popish Catechisme.
    • 3 His Treatises,
      • 1. Of Imaginations Out of Genes. 8. 2.
      • [Page] 2. Of Temptations, out of Mathew 4.
      • 3. Of Christian equitie, out of Phil­lippians 4. 3.
      • 4. Of the Callings of the Ministery, out of two places of Scripture.
      • 5. Of Repentance, out of Zephaniah, 2. 1.

Besides many other particular Ser­mons, and short discourses made vpon se­uerall, and speciall occasions: of al which, some are already published by others, and some by my selfe: and all the rest that remaine, as they bee the Iewels of Gods Church, so did I willingly dedicate them to the publique and general good: Iudge­ing it were a foule sinne in mee, or any o­ther, to impropriate to our selues, or our owne priuate vse, the labours of This, or any other learned man, which are in my opinion, parts of the Treasurie of the mi­litant Church: And as it were wrong to the Church, if I should conceale them, so doubtlesse were it to him & his children: If I should publish them for mine owne a­lone, [Page] and not for their benefit. If I doe, I thinke it may be iustly sayde vnto mee, or whosoeuer doth so, Thy monie perish with thee. And what herein I haue sayd for my selfe: I know I may boldly & safely say, for his Executors or assignes, which haue or had in their hands, any of those which were found in his Studie: In the publishing of alwhich, as we do intend to deale truly with the Christian Reader, and not to commit any thing to the Presse, which hath not either beene written or corrected, by the Authour himselfe, or faithfully penned according to the truest Coppies taken from his owne mouth, and since by others of sufficiencie and integri­tie, dilligently perused: so we purpose to re­ferre them to the benefit of the Authours wife and children, as much as may bee, wishing that vpon this Caueat, men would not be so hastie (as some haue been) to commend to the world, their vnprefect notes, vpon a base desire of a little gaine, both to hinder the common good of the [Page] Church, and to defraude the said parties of their priuate benefit, to whom in all equitie and conscience, it doth principally appertaine: And desiring all who haue a­ny perfect Coppies of such as are in my owne handes, that they would either helpe me with theirs, or rather take mine to helpe them. That by our ioynt powers and our forces layd together: the walles of this worthy building, may goe vp the fai­rer & the faster. And so I commend them all to Gods blessing, who endeuor to com­mend themselues, and their labours to God and to his Church.

Your brother in the Lord. W. C.


Zophoniah, Chap. 2. verse. 1. 2.‘Search your selues, euensearch you ô nation, not worthy to be beloued: before the De­cree come forth, and you be as Chaffe that passeth on a day.’

THe Prophet in the first Chapter of this prophecy, rebuketh the Iewes of three notable crimes, Ido­latry, fraud, and cru­eltie. In this second he exhorts them to repentance, and withall reproueth some of their speciall sinnes. In the three first verses he pro­poundeth the Doctrine of Repentance, [Page 2] and addeth some speciall reasons to mooue and stirre them vp to the prac­tise of it. In propounding the Doctrine of repentance, he directs it to two sorts of men. First to the obstinate and impe­nitent Iewes in the first and second ver­ses. Secondly, to the better sort of them, in the third. So that the summe and sub­stance of these two first verses, is a briefe and summarie propounding of the do­ctrine of Repentance to the obstinate Iewes. The wordes containe in them 5. seuerall points, touching the doctrine of repentance.

1 The dutie to be performed, Search:

2 Who must be searched: your selues.

3 Who must doe it. The Iewes: who are further described to be a nation, not worthy to be beloued of God, these are in the first verse.

4. In the second verse: the time limit­ting them, when to repent, before the de­cree come forth that is, before God put in execution the iudgements which are already decreed & appointed for them.

5. A forcible reason vrging them to doe [Page 3] it which lieth hid, and is necessarily im­plied in the fourth point: namely, that there is a decree against them, which wants nothing but execution: which al­so shal come vnlesse they repent, where­by they shal be fanned: and if they shall be found to be chaffe, they shal fly away with the winde of Gods iustice. Of all these points in order.

For the first, the holy Ghost saith; Search your selues. The words are com­monly reade thus. Gather your selues, which, though it be good, for that in re­pentance a man gathereth himselfe, and all his wits together, which afore were dispersed, & wandred vp & down in va­nity: yet I rather allow their translation who read thus. Search, or fan your selues: but either of them may stand, because Īunius. the word in the original doth cōprehēd both significations; yet it seemeth that to search, or sift, fits this place better, consi­dring the same manner of speech is at­terwards continued in the word Chaffe: so that the meaning of the Holy Ghost seemeth to bee this: Search, try, and [Page 4] fanne your selues, least you bee found light chaffe, and so fly away and be con­sumed before the iustice of God.

Concerning this duty of searching, let vs obserue first, that the holy Ghost vrging the Iewes to repent, vseth not the word Repentance, but bids them search themselues: yet meaning, hee, would haue them to repent: giuing vs to vnderstand, that no man can haue true and sound repentance, but hee who hath first of all searched and ex­amined himselfe: and this stands with good reason, for no man can repent, who first of all doth not know himselfe, and his owne wretchednesse. But no man can see into himselfe, nor knowe himselfe, but hee that doth diligently search himselfe: so that the begin­ning of all grace, is for a man to search and try, and fanne himselfe, that thereby he may knowe what is in him­selfe: that so vpon the search, seeing his fearefull and damnable estate, hee may forsake himselfe & his owne waies and turne to the Lord. Thus speaketh [Page 5] the holy Ghost in the heartes of holy men; Let vs search and try our waies: and Lamen. 3. make what followeth; and turne againe to the Lord: as though there were no turning againe to the Lord, but after a searching of our selues. With this testi­monie of the holy Ghost, agreeth the testimonie of al holy mens consciences, who all knowe, that the first beginning of their turning to the Lord, was a searching of themselues: Let any repen­tant sinner aske his conscience, and call to minde his first calling and conuersi­on, and he will remember that the first thing in his repentance was this; that he searched into himselfe, and looked narrowly into his waies, and finding his waies dangerous, and his case feare­full, did thereupon resolue to take a new course, and turne to the Lord for pardon and mercie, and for grace to enter into more holy, and more comfor­table courses.

The man that passeth vpon ridges of Mountains, and sides of hils, or that go­eth ouer a narrow bridge, or some dan­gerous [Page 6] and steepe Rockes, at midnight; feareth not, because hee seeth no daun­ger: but bring the same man, in the morning, and let him see the narrowe bridge, he went ouer in the night, vnder which runnes a violent streame, and a bottomlesse gulfe, and the daungerous Mountaines, and rocks, he passed ouer, and he will wonder at his owne bold­nesse, and shrinke for feare to thinke of it, and will by no meanes venter the same way againe: for now hee seeth the height of the Mountaines; the steepnesse of the Hilles, the crag­ginesse of the Rockes, the fearsul down­fall, and the furious violence of the streame vnderneath, & therby seeth the extreame daunger, which afore he saw not: therfore he wondreth, & reioy [...]oth, that he hath escaped so great a da [...]nger; and will by no meanes be drawn to goe that way in the day, which hee went most carelesly in the darkenesse of the night, but seeketh another way (though it should be far about:) So a sinner in his first estate, which is naturall and corrupt [Page 7] (as wee are bredde and borne) hath a vaile before his face: so that hee seeth nothing: the wrath of God and the curse due for sinne, Hell and damnation see­king to deuoure him, he seeth them not, although (liuing alwaies in sinne,) hee walketh in the very Iawes of Hell it selfe: and because he seeth not this feare­full daunger, therefore hee refuseth no sinne at all, but rusheth securely into all maner of sinne: the night of impeniten­cie, and the myst of ignorance so blin­ding his eyes, that he seeth not the nar­row bridge of this life, from which if he slide, he falles immediatly into the bot­tomlesse p [...]t of Hell.

But when as Gods spirit hath by the light of Gods word opened his eyes & touched his heart to consider his estate, then hee seeth the fraile bridge of this narrow life, and how little a sleppe there is between him and damnation; then hee seeth Hell open due for his sinnes, and himselfe in the high way to it: sinne being the craggy rocke, and Hell the gaping gulfe vnder it; this life [Page 2] being the narrowe bridge, and dam­nation the streame which runneth vn­der it: Then hee wondreth at his mi­serable estate, admireth the mercie of God in keeping him from falling in­to the bottome of hell, wondreth at the presumptuous boldnesse of his cor­ruption, which so securely plodded on towards destruction, and being asha­med of himselfe, and these his waies, he turnes his heart to the God that saued him from these daungers; and sets himselfe into more holy wayes, and more comfortable courses, and con­fesseth that ignorance made him bold, and blindnesse made him so presump­tuous; but now hee seeth the daun­ger, and will by no meanes goe the same way againe: and thus the searching and seeing into the foulnesse of sinne, and the daunger thereof, is the first be­ginning of repentance, and the first step into grace.

This doctrine teacheth vs what faith and repentance is generall in the world: All men say, they beleeue, and haue re­pented [Page 9] long agoe; but trie it well, and we shall finde in the bodie of our Na­tion, but a lippe faith, and a sippe Re­pentance: for euen when they say so, they are blinde and ignorant of their owne estate, & know not themselues, but presume of themselues, that be­cause they are baptized and liue in the Church, therefore they are in Gods fa­uour, and in very good estate, when as they neuer yet were recōciled to God: and are so farre from it, that they ne­uer yet saw any sinnes in themselues wherof they shuld repent: as a man tra­uelling in the night, seeth no daunger, but plods on without feare: So the most part of our common people, in the night of their ignorance, think and presume they loue and feare God, and loue their Neighbour; and that they haue euer done so: Nay, it is the com­mon opinion that a man may do so by nature, and that hee is not worthy to liue, who doth not loue God with all his heart, and beleeue in Iesus Christ: But alas poore simple soules, they ne­uer [Page 10] knewe what sinne was, neuer sear­ched nor saw into theirown harts with the light of Gods lawe, for if they had, they should haue seene such a Sea of corruption, that then they would con­fesse it to bee the hardest thing in the world, to loue God, and to beleeue in Christ, and for sake sinne: it is therefore manifest, that they haue not yet be­gun to beleeue or repent, nor haue en­tred into the first step of grace, which leadeth to repentance, for that they haue not learned this lesson, which the Prophet teacheth: that is, to search them­selues.

Furthermore, let vs in the second place, obserue better the signification of the word: it signifieth to Search nar­rowly, as a man would doe for a piece of gold, or a p [...]cious Iewell, which is lost in a great house: Or as a man may search for gold in a Myne of the earth, where is much earth, and but very little gold Oare.

Hence wee may learne, that in true Repentance, and conuersion, we must [Page 11] not search so only, as to find the grosse and palpable sinnes of our liues: but so as we may finde those sinnes which the world accounts lesser sinnes, and espie our secret faults & priuy corruptions. Some corruptions see memore neere a kinne to our nature, and therein men hope to be excused, when they forsake many other greater sins: But a true pe­nitent sinner must search for such, so as a good Magistrate searcheth for a lurking [...] which is [...] in­to some close and secret corner, and he must ranfack his heart for such corrup­tions, as wherein his heart takes special delight, and must thanke that no sinne can be so small, but it is too great to be spared, and that euery sinne great or li­tle, must be searched for, as being all Tray [...] to Gods Maiestie.

But alas, the practise [...] the world is farre otherwise, great sinnes are little sinnes, little sinnes are no sinnes: Nay, after a little custome, great sinnes are also little or nothing, and so at last men make no bones of grosse and grieuous [Page 12] sins: and for the most part men search so superficially, that they scarse finde a­ny thing to be sinne: such excuses are made, such distinctiōs are deuised, such mittigations, such qualifications, such colours are cast vppon all sinnes; as now vp and downe the world, grosse sins are called into question, whether they be sins or no: and the great trans­gressions of the lawe are counted small matters, necessarie euils or inconueni­ences, tollerated to auoyd other euils: and what is he counted but a curious and a precise foole, which stands vpon them: Ignorance after fiue and thirtie yeares preaching is counted no sinne, blind deuotion in Gods seruice no sin, lippe labour in praying, vaine and cu­stomable swearing, mocking of religi­on, and the professors thereof, no sin: prophaning of the Saboath, contem­ning of preachers, abusing of parents▪ no sinnes pride in apparel, superfluitie in meates, beastly and ordinarie drun­kennes, fornication, no sinnes. Nay, decites, Cosonages, oppressing vsury, [Page 13] notorious briberie, and couetousnes, that mother sinne; these are counted no sinnes: these beames are made but moates by prophane men, & they are so minced and carued, or there is some such necessitie of them, or some such other flourish or vernish must be cast vpon thē, as that they are little or none at all. Alas, alas, is not that a simple & a silly search where such blockes as these are, lye vnspied? what are moule­hils, when such mountaines are not seene? Moates will be little regarded, where such beames are not discerned: but it is cleare, that therefore there is no true trial nor diligent search made: for a true conuert will search his heart for all, and wil spare none: He deales in searching his owne heart, as a good Iustice of peace in searching for tray­tors or Seminarie Priests. He seekes not superficially, but most exactly, and leaueth neuer a corner vnsought, and he thinkes great sinnes to be infinite, and little sinnes great, and iudgeth no sinne so small, but that it deserueth the [...] [Page 12] [...] [Page 13] [Page 14] anger of God, & therefore he wonders at the mercy of God, which throwes vs not al downe to hel in a moment: & he crieth out with holy Ieremie: It is the Lords mercie that we are not consumed. Lam. 3. 22 Away then with this superficial & hy­pocritical search, where so many sinnes are spared and not found out. It is Pha­risaical, for euen so the Pharisie, when hee came into the Temple to recken with God, and to tell what Traytours hee had found, that is, what sinnes, vp­on good search hee had espied, he re­turnes his precept, all is well, he hath found neuer a one, but beginnes to thanke God that he was so good, and so good, and not so il, and so il, nor yet like the Publicane. The world is full of Pharisies, not onely the popish Church: but euen our Church swarms with these superficial searchers, who cannot (because they will not,) finde any sinnes to present vnto God, Men thinke in the Countrie, a Church Of­ficer hazards his Oath, if he present all well, and findeth no fault in his Pa­rish, [Page 15] to present as punishable to the Ordinary: for men thinke it vnpossi­ble, that there should bee none in a whole parish: then how doth that man hazard his own soule, who being made ouerseer & searcher of his heart, findes nothing in it to present to the Lord. For it is not more easie to espie out­ward & actual trāsgessions in a whole parish, then it is to finde a heape of cor­ruptions in a mans heart, if a man will search into the bottome of it with the light of Gods Law. Therefore when the Lord comes and keepes his visita­tion, what shal become of such a man, but to vndergoe the strict and seuere search of the Almightie, because hee would not search himselfe?

Our bodyes and liues are free from spanish Inquisition (which is one of the last props, which Sathan hath lent the Pope, wherewith to vphold his de­clining kingdom) and the Lord grant we may be euer free from it. But in the meane time, that might put vs in mind how to deale with our corrupt hearts, [...] [Page 14] [...] [Page 15] [Page 16] and vnmortified affections, euen to erect an Inquisition ouer them, to lay in waite for them, to search them narrow­ly, and to vse them roughly: yea, to set our hearts vpon the rack of Gods law, that so it may confesse the secret wic­kednesse of it: for the Papistes doe not thinke vs Protestants, greater ene­mies to their superstition, then the in­ward corruptions of our hearts, are to our saluation: therefore it may bee a godly pollicie for euery man, curn to erect an Inquisition ouer his owne heart and conscience, and not to spare his most secret and dearest sinnes, and such as are neerest allyed to his owne nature: for that is the true search here commaunded by the Prophet, and practised by all Godly and holy men: when a man purposeth to finde al that are, & to espie euē al his sins: for a god­ly man is neuer satisfied in his search, but still, the more he findes, he suspects the more are stil behind: and therefore hee continueth searching his owne heart all his life long: Therefore let [Page 17] euery, professor looke to it betwixt God and his conscience, that he dally not with himselfe in ths case: for if he doe, then, when God comes with his priuie search, his hypocrisie shall bee discouered, and his nakednesse shall be layd open in the view of men, and An­gels: to his eternal confusion.

Thirdly, Search, saith the Pro­phet, but not so content: he forceth it againe, Euen search you. In thus repea­ting and vrging this exhortation, the holy Ghost giues them, and vs to vn­derstand, that the true searching of a mans heart, and life, is a duty of a great moment, and special necessitie: there­fore he leaues it not after once naming it, but inforceth it the second time, as being no matter of indifferency, but of great necessitie: thereby shewing, that it is a principal dutie in repentance, euen the beginning and foundation of all true grace.

And further, it is a meanes also to preuent Gods Iudgements: for when men search not themselues, then God [Page 18] sendes the fire of afflictions, and Crosses to trie and Search them: but, when they Search themselues, then God spareth to Search them by his iudgements.

Now in that this dutie of searching, is both the beginning of all true grace, and the meane to stay Gods iudge­ments, and therefore is so pithely, and forceably vrged by the holy Ghost, it must teach vs all a necessarie lesson: namely, to make great conscience of searching our selues. First, because God hath so commanded, and we are to make conscience of obedience to e­uery commandement. Secondly, be­cause therby we shal reape two so great commodities, as first, thereby we shal lay a sure foundatiō for the good work of grace in vs, and secondly, shall stay the hand of God, and his iudgements from being executed vpon vs. Let vs therefore hearken to this counsaile of the holy ghost, let vs take the fan of the Lawe, and therewith search and win­nowe our hearts and liues. Our hearts, [Page 19] for secret and hidden corruptions. Our liues, for committing of euil, and o­mitting of good. Doe with your hearts as men doe with their wheate: they will not suffer their corne to lie long in the chaffe, least the chaffe hurt it, but commits it to the fanne that the winde may separate them: So the graces of God in our hearts are pure corne, our sinnes and corruptions are Chaffe: looke well, and thou shalt finde in thy selfe much chaffe, and but little corne: let not then the chaffe lye too long mingled with the Corne, lest it cor­rupt the corne. Let not thy sinnes lye mingled with the grace of God in thee, if thou doe, they will choake it in the end, and so depriue thee of all grace; therfore rippe vp thy heart, and looke into thy life, and when thou hast sin­ned, enter into thy selfe, aske thy con­science what thou hast done, & be not quiet till thou hast found out thy sin, and the foulenesse of it: and neuer thinke that thou knowest any thing in Religion, till thou knowest what [Page 20] is in thine owne heart. And what are thy special and priuiest corruptions, and looke into thine owne faults, not with a partial eye, but with a censori­ous, and a strait iudgement, spare sin in no man, but especially condemne it in thy selfe.

But alas, these times of ours, cry out of an other state, for euen Ieremies case is ours: We may complaine as hee did, No man repents him of his wickednesse, Iere. 8. 6. saying what haue I done? the same is the sore of our people, and the sicknesse of all Nations: that euery man runnes on in his sinnes, from sinne to sinne carelesly: euen as the barde horse into the battaile. But how rare a thing is it, to find a man, that dayly searcheth himself, & examines how he liues, and how the case standeth betwixt GOD and himselfe: and that when hee hath done amisse, entereth into the closet of his heart, and strikes himselfe vpon the breast, and disputes the case with him­selfe, saying: What hane I done? O what is this, that I haue done against God, [Page 21] against his Church, and against my owne soule?

The want of this, is that, which the Prophet complaines of in that place: not as though it were sufficient thus to doe, in a mans owne consci­ence: but because it is a good begin­ning, and a step to further grace. For if a man did seriously thus deale with his conscience after his sinne, his con­science would shape him such an aunswere, and would tell him so roundly, what hee had done, that hee would take heede, how hee did the same againe, and looke more nar­rowly, and warily to himselfe all the dayes of his life. Seeing therefore it is so necessarie a dutie, let euery one of vs indeuour the practise of it, name­ly, to rippe and ransacke our hearts, and to search our wayes vnto the bot­tome.

Now for your better instruction, and furtherance in the performance hereof: you must know that this Search is to be made by the Lawe of [Page 22] God, for nothing els, but Gods law can helpe vs, & let vs see yt which we must search for: for if wee search by any o­ther means, we may seek & search long enough, ere we find any thing that wil be matter of repentance. Aske the di­uel, he will tell thee all is well, & that thou art in an excellent estate: and God loues thee, and thou art sure of Heauen: this song the diuell alwayes sings for the most part til a man comes to die, for then hee appeares in his colours, but till then, hee laboures, to sing, and lull all men a sleepe in the cradle of securitie. Aske our owne flesh, & our owne hearts and natures, and they will answere, and say, that all is well and safe, and that wee haue be­leeued, and loued and feared God all our dayes. Aske the world, and men in the world: and they will aunswere, all is well; and they will say further, that thou art a right good fellow, and art worth twentie of these curious fooles that sticke vpon points, & stand vpon circumstances, as swearing and [Page 23] drinking, and good fellowshippe, and gaming, and such other nice and cir­cumstanciall points: thus will worldly men answere: for thy prophane course is acceptable to them, because thereby thou approuest the same in them. Nay, goe further, and aske all humane lear­ning in the world, and it cannot tell thee what one sinne is, nor what it is to offend God: so that there remaines onely the law of God, the light where­of will disclose the darknesse of our hearts, and the iustice whereof will re­ueale the vnrighteousnesse & the per­uersnesse of our natures: therefore to the lawe of God must we flye to helpe vs in this Search.

And yet for our better helpe in this dutie, and that there may bee nothing wanting to that soule, that seeketh God, therfore we are further to know, that if we will search our selues by the law profitably, wee must marke three rules, the truth whereof vnlesse wee know, acknowledge, and feele: wee [Page 24] shall neuer see our owne estate, nor profite by this Search, but plodde on from finne to sinne, vntill wee plunge into hell.

The first Rule is, that euery man that came from Adam, sinned in the sinne of Adam: Thou must therefore know, that his sinne in eating the for­bidden fruite, was thy sinne: and thou sinnedst therein, as well as he (though thou wast then vnborne) and that thou art guiltie of it before God, and must answere for it to Gods iustice, vn­lesse Christ doe it for thee. The rea­son hereof is, because we are his seede & posteritie, we were thē in his loynes, he was the father of vs all: and was not a priuate mā as we are now, but a pub­like person, the pledge of al mankind, and bare the person of vs all at that time: therefore what he did then, hee did it for himself, & for vs: what coue­nant God made with him, was made for himselfe and vs: what God promi­sed him, and he to God, he promised for himselfe, & for vs: what he receiued [Page 25] in his Creation, he receiued for him­selfe, and for vs: and what he gained or lost by his fall, he gained and lost for vs, as for himselfe. He lost the fauour of God, and originall puritie: therefore he lost it for all his posteritie: guiltinesse, and Gods anger, and corruption of na­ture which he gained, he got for vs all, as well as for himselfe. If we doubt of this point, it is proued by the Apostle: where the holy Ghost saith; Sin entred by one man, and death by sinne: and that sinne went ouer all, and that it went ouer Rom. 5. 14 all them, which sinned not in the like trans­gression with Adam (that is, euen our children) who as they are borne, are borne not onely tainted with originall corruption: but guiltie also of Adams sinne. This is a most certaine truth, though it seeme strange, for fewe men thinke of it, that euer they shall answer for Adams sinne: and therefore if any obiect, what reason is there that I an­swere for another mans sinne? I an­swere, true, if it had bene Adams sinne alone: but it was his and thine also: for [Page 26] hee was thy father and stoode in thy roome: and thou also since thou wast borne, hast confirmed what hee did. Now therefore though not one of ma­ny thinkes seriously thereof: namely, that he should stand guilty of a sin com­mitted more then fiue thousand yeares before he was born, yet seeing it is most true, both in Scripture and good rea­son: let euery man subscribe in his con­science to this truth. And let this be thy first resolution in this Search, that thou standest guilty of Adams transgressi­on.

The second rule to bee knowne is, that in euery man are all sinnes: more plainly, that in euery man by nature are the seedes of all sinnes: and that not in the worst, but in the best natured men: make choyse of the best man and the greatest sinne, and that worst sinne is to be found in that best man. If any doubt of this, let him consider what originall sinne is, namely, a corrupti­on of the powers of our soules; and that not of some, or in part, but of [Page 27] all, and wholy. This corruption hath two parts. First a want, not of some, but of all good inclination, a want of all goodnesse. Secondly, a deprauation & pronenesse, not to some, but to all euill: and not a pronenesse onely, but origi­nall sin infuseth into euery mans heart, the seed of all corruption.

Many men stand much vpon their good meaning, and vpright heart, and bragge of a good nature: but they are foulely deceiued; for take the ciuilest man vpon the earth, and the seeds of all sins in the world are in him by nature. But to explaine this point fully, obserue these two clauses.

First, I say not, the practise of all sinnes, but the seedes; for all men pra­ctise not all sinne: the seedes are in their nature▪ but the practise is restrained, sometime by education, sometime by good and wholesome lawes, sometime the constitution of mens bodies deny the practise of some sinnes, sometime the Countrey a man dwels in, or cal­ling a man liues in, keepes him from [Page 28] the practise of some sinnes: and al­wayes a generall and limitting grace of God, restraines the natures of all men from running into many sinnes: which hand of God, if God should take away, and leaue euery man to his nature, wee should see that eue­rie man would practise any sinne in the world: yea, euen the greatest sinnes that euer wee heard to bee done in the world. All men which knowe them­selues knowe this to be true. And the more a man knowes his owne heart, the more he seeth that his heart is a sea of all wickednesse: & that it is the mer­cy and grace of God, that hee hath not fallen into the mightiest & most mon­strous sinnes in the world.

Secondly, I say, by nature. For I know by good education, & by grace, it is otherwise: grace rectifieth na­ture, but that is no thankes to nature: for it is as euill and corrupt still, being seuered from grace: and therefore na­ture must be fully abolished, afore man come to heauen. And yet (though all [Page 29] this be true (I say not, that sin breakes out in all natures alike, though all na­tures be alike corrupt: for the course of nature is restrained in some more then others, by the meanes aforesaid; but this is the truth, that whereas some are not so angry, some not so wanton, some not so cruel, some not so couetous, som not so ambitious, &c. as others: that comes not from any goodnesse of nature in them, aboue the other originally, but from Gods hand, which tempereth, re­straineth, and moderateth euery mans nature as he seeth good.

And if God did not thus moderate & restraine the natures of men, but suffer them to breake out to the full: there would then be no order, but all confu­sion in the world: therefore, (as especi­ally for his Churches quietnesse, so al­so for the preseruatiō of publike peace, and the vpholding of societie in the world betweene man and man) the Lord holdes a hand ouer euery mans nature, and keepes euery one in a cer­taine compasse limitted by the wisdom [Page 30] of his power, which restraining hand of his, if the Lord should take away: all societies and common wealths would be turned vpside downe, because euery man by the vniuersall corruption of his nature, would breake out into euery sinne: I ende this point with appealing to the testimonie of the consciences of all men, and especially of the best and holiest men, of whom I would aske this question, whether they find not in their natures an inclination, euen to the foulest sinnes in the world; if shame, or feare, or else the grace of God restrai­ned them not? so that the best men doe knowe well enough, what adoe they haue with their corrupt natures, to keepe them within the compasse of O­bedience.

Nay, I yet adde further, the nature of men, and of all men is so corrupt, since Adam: that euen the seede of the sinne against the holy Ghost, and a pronenesse to it, is in the nature of euery man (though not one man a­mongst many thousandes doe commit [Page 31] that sinne,) for seeing in that sinne, there is a heape or Sea of all sinnes gathe­red together, hee therefore that hath in his nature the seede of all sinnes, hath also the seede of it. And againe, see­ing all euill tendes to a perfection, as well as grace doth; what reason there­fore is there, but wee may safely thinke that the Diuell would hale euery one to that height of sinne: if it were not that the powerfull hand of God pre­uented him, who will neither suffer wicked men, nor the Diuell himselfe to bee so wicked as they could, and would be.

The vse of this second rule, is nota­ble. For in this searching of our selues, it sheweth vs what wee are, without all colours or deceit, and fully dis­couers vnto vs, the vglinesse of our natures: and it may teach vs all how Gen. 4. Exod. I. Gen. 18. 2. Sam. 15 & 16. Esay. 38 to think and esteeme of our selues, when we heare of Caines vnnaturall murther, Pharohs vnnatural crueltie, the Sodomits vnnatural lust, Achitophles, diuilish pol­licy, Senacheribs horrible blasphemie, [...] [Page 30] [...] [Page 31] [Page 32] Iudas monstrous treason, Iulians feare­full Apostacie. When we heare of the fearefull murders, treasons, periuties, sinnes against nature, blasphemies, A­postacies, witchcrafts, and other the horrible sinnes of the world: let vs then returne into our selues, & looke home­wards, euen into our owne hearts, and confesse euery one, that these should haue bene euen thy sinnes also, if Gods grace had not preuented thee.

This will humble thee, and make thee thinke vilely, & basely of thy selfe, and so consequently bring thee to re­pentance and true amendment: and the very reason, why men repent not, nor amend their waies, is, because they are Pharisies by nature, and thinke highly of themselues, and of their owne na­tures, and their naturall inclinations: this will be a harsh and a strange Doc­trine to them: Oh, they haue excellent natures, and they cannot indure such, and such sinnes, and they thanke God, they are not as ill as others: but let all such men knowe, they must cease mag­nifying [Page 33] nature, and learne to magnifie Gods grace. Let them knowe, that na­ture in them, is in the Roote, as much corrupt, as in the worst man in the world, and euery mans heart is a bot­tomlesse fountaine of all sinne; there­fore praise not thy nature, but Gods grace and mercy, in giuing thee so good a nature; or rather, so well restraining, and rectifying thy nature; and stay not there, but desire of the Lord, that as he hath giuen thee a better tempered na­ture, thē to other men: so also he would bestowe on thee his speciall and sauing grace: and as he hath kept thee from the feareful sins of others (thou being as ill, naturally, as they) so he would also lead thee into the way of saluation, which else the best nature in the world, can neuer attaine vnto.

The third rule to be known and pra­ctised by him, who will truly search himselfe, is, that euery man borne of Adam, is by nature, the child of wrath, and Gods enimie: this is true of all without exception; High or Low, Rich [Page 34] or poore, noble or simple, borne in the visible Church or without. And further, by being enemy of God, he is therefore borne subiect to hell, to dam­nation, and to all other curses: so that looke as a Traytour conuicted, stands therby in his Princes high displeasure, and is sure of death without speciall pardon: so stands euery man, when he is borne, conuicted of high trea­son against God, in his high disfauour; and is in daunger of Hell, which is the fulfilling of the wrath of God. Thus Dauid confesseth of himselfe. I was borne in iniquitie, and in sinne hath my Mother conceined me: If in sinne, then in Gods wrath, and vnder the danger of damnation, If any aske, how, or why this is so. I answere, the truth, as also the equitie of this third rule depends on the two former: for, because euery man is borne guiltie of Adams great sinne, and also tainted originally with all cor­ruption & a pronnesse to all sin: there­fore it followeth in equitie and iustice, that euery man is borne vnder the [Page 35] wrath and curse of God. This point is a plaine and euident truth: yet men in the world thinke not so, and it is the cause, why men repent not of their sinnes: for most men thinke that by na­ture, they are in Gods fauour; and ther­fore they neede not to sue for it in hu­miliation and repentance; but onely liue ciuily, and do no open wrong, and all is well: whereas (alas) there is no condemned Traytour, more out of his Princes fauour, nor more sure of death without a pardon, then al we are out of Gods fauour, and sure of damnation, vnlesse we procure Gods fauour again, by faith and repentance,

For the better opening of this third rule, and the manifesting of the truth: let vs know further, that the curse of God, vnder the which we are all borne, is three-fould.

The first, is a bondage vnder Sathan: It is a certaine truth that euery man as he is borne of his Parents, and till hee repent, is a slaue of Sathan: man or wo­man, high or low, Sathan is his Lord [Page 36] and Maister. Hee sittes as iudge in his heart; and in this sence Sathan is the King of the Nations, and God of the world. Men will in wordes defie Sathan, and not name him with­out defiance, and spitte at him; and yet (alas,) hee is in their hearts: they spit him out of their mouthes, but hee is lower; they should also spitte him out of their hearts, and that is true defiance indeede: for alas, hee lod­geth in thy heart, and there he makes his Throne, and raignes vntill the spi­rit of regeneration dispossesse him: and till then, no seruant is so subiect to his maister, no slaue to his Lord, as is the heart of man by nature vnto Sathan, the prince of darknesse. Nay, our bon­dage, is more fearefull, then the sla­uery of any poore Christian, in the Spaniards, or in the Turkes Gallies: for their bodies are but in bondage, and at commaund, and vnder punishment: but our best part, our heart, our con­science, our soule it selfe is captiuated vnto him, and vnder his commaunde, [Page 37] who is the King of crueltie, and con­fusion, and Lord of Hell, whose com­maundements are Iniustice, whose seruice is sinne, and whose hyre is dam­nation.

The second part of the Curse, is the first death, or the death of the bo­dy: that is, a separation of the soule and body a sunder for a time, namely, till the last iudgement. This death is duly and iustly the punishment of any one, or the least sinne: therefore, how due and iust a punishment vpon that hor­rible heape of sinfulnesse, which is in e­uery mans nature▪ and it is a most ter­rible curse. For it is the very gate of hel, and the downfall to damnation, vnto all men, but such, as by faith and repen­tance doe get their death sanctified by the death of Christ: vnto such men in­deed it is no curse, but a gracious and glorious blessing, for it is altered by Christ his death. But vnto all men by nature, and which repent not, it is the heauy curse of Gods wrath, and the ve­ry downfall into the gulfe of Hell.

[Page 38] The thirde part of the curse, vn­der which euery man is borne, is, the second death: the death of soule and bodie; which is the eternall want of Gods presence, and the accomplish­ment of his wrath: and an apprehensi­on and feeling of that wrath, seazing on body, soule, and conscience. The first curse, was a spirituall death; the death of the soule, The second a temporarie death, the death of the body. The third, is an eternall death, a death both of soule and bodie together; and for e­uer. This eternall death is the curse of all curses, the miserie of all mi­series, and torment of all torments: and I shewe it thus. Often when thy tooth acheth, and sometime when thy head acheth, or in the paine of the stone or collicke, thou wouldest giue all that thou hast in the world to bee eased of that paine: Nay, in the ex­stremitie of some fitts, many will wish them-selues euen out of the world: Now, if the paine of one tooth, can so farre distemper minde and body, that [Page 39] it cannot bee releiued with all the pleasures of this life; O then, what a torment shall that bee? when not one kinde of paine, but the whole viole of Gods wrath shall bee powred, not on one member, but on the whole soule body, and conscience, and that not for a time, vnder hope of better: but eter­nally without hope of release; and that not in this world, where there are com­forts, helpes and remedies: but in that vgly and darksome place of torments: and that not amongst liuing men, which might mittigate thy paine, or else bemone thee, and beway leit with thee: but with the Diuels, and damned spirits, which will now laugh at thy de­struction, and solace themselues in this thy misery, and will reioyce, as thou didest serue them in earth, so now in hel to be thy tormēters. It may be ther­fore (by the way), good warning and wisedome to vs all, when we feele the extremity of some bodily paine, to con­sider with our selues, and say: O then, what shall be my misery and torment [Page 40] if I repent not; when not one member, but soule, bodie, and conscience, shall be racked and tormented in the feeling and apprehension of the anger of the Lord of Hostes.

In these three points, stands that curse and wrath of God, vnder which euery man is borne. And these doe answer to the three degrees of sinne, which are in vs: for as the two first Rules taught vs, there is in euery man by nature, till hee repent, a three-fold guiltinesse. First, a guiltinesse of Adams sinne. Secondly, the taint of originall, and vniuersal cor­ruption. Thirdly a pollution by many outragious actuall sinnes. In the first of these, euery man is equally guiltie. In the second, euery man is equally cor­rupt. But in the third, euery one keepes that compasse, within which the Lord wil keepe them, by his limitting power.

Now as in our guiltinesse of Adams sinne, sin hath his beginning: In origi­nall sinne, his continuance: in actuall sin, his perfection: So answerable here­vnto, the wrath of God (which alwaies [Page 41] standeth opposite to sinne) is begun in leauing vs by nature to the slauerie of Sathan, is continued by death, and is accomplished in damnation.

And now these three Rules, I com­mend to the carefull & Christian con­sideration of you all: certifying you from God, that as you can neuer bee saued, vnlesse you repent: nor repent, vnlesse you Search your selues (as here the Prophet bid deth) So, that you can neuer search your selues aright, til you bee perswaded, and resolued of these three Rules, and of the truth of them all, euen in your hearts and conscien­ces: namely, First, that thou art guiltie of Adams sin. Secondly, that thou art prone by nature to al euil in the world. Thirdly, that for these, thou art subiect to the wrath of God, and to all the cur­ses of his wrath: but when thou art in heart, & conscience resolued, that these are true, then thou art a fit Scholler, for this Lesson of the Prophet, Search thy selfe. For when thou goest, thus pre­pared vnto this Search, and esteemest [Page 42] of thy selfe, as these three Rules haue described thee: then if thou Search in­to thy selfe, thou wilt finde thy selfe, and thy estate to be such, as will cause thee to repent, returne and take a new course: therefore, what the Prophet sayd to those Iewes, I say vnto you also, my brethren of this Realme of Eng­land, who are here now gathered toge­ther out of so many countries, & quar­ters of this Realme: yea, in the name of the same God, I cry vnto you. Search, O Search your selues: and thinke it not a matter indifferent to do, or not to doe it: but know it, that God commandes you, as euer you will come to saluati­on: Search your selues. And the rather, because by these three Rules▪ you see how much chaffe of corruption is in your nature, and what neede there­fore it hath to bee searched into, and fanned by Repentance. Bee well as­sured: thou man, whatsoeuer thou art: there is so much Chaffe in thee, that if thou search not, and fanne it not out, thou wilt proue nothing but [Page 43] Chaffe at the last day, and so be blown away with the winde of Gods iustice into Hell. Take hold therefore of this exhortation, and deferre it not.

Thou wilt not suffer thy Wheate to lye too long in the chaffe, for feare of hurting it: Is it then safe to suffer the chaffe of thy sinnes and corrupti­ons, to lie cankering and rotting in thy heart? Bee sure that that little portion of grace, which thou attainest vnto, by liuing in the Church, and vnder the Ministrie of the Word of GOD, will bee putrifyed, and cleane cor­rupted with the Chaffe of thy sinnes: therefore againe, and againe, I ex­hort you to make conscience of this dutie: Search into your selues, fanne out this Chaffe, this presumption of ours, and high esteeming of our owne nature, and conceits of Gods fa­uour before wee haue it: that so this Chaffe being blowne away, the Lord may then bestow vpon vs foundnesse of grace, & the foundation of al good­nes, which is a holy & humbled heart.

[Page 44] Salnation is such a building, as the foundation thereof had need to be sure and strong: Ignorance, blindnesse, and presumption, are not sufficient foun­dations for such a building: therefore as no man wil build a strong house vp­on any earth, but will first search it, least it prooue Sandie, & so ouerthrow all: So a wise Christian will not build his saluation, vpon fancies & conceits, and naturall presumptions: but will Search, and looke into his heart: and finding these to be sandie, and rotten, and therefore too weake for the foun­dation of so glorious a building, wil re­fuse them all, and labour to furnish his heart with such sound grace, as wher­vpon he may trust so weighty a work, as is the Saluation of his soule. Againe, if thou wilt stand in the day of triall, then Search thy heart betime, and dis­cerne betwixt Chaffe & Wheat: thou seest, that chaffe flyeth away before the wind; but good corne indures the Fan, and the furie of the wind: so in the day of triall, temptation, sicknesse, or open [Page 45] persecution, the chaffe of natural pre­sumption, and outward formalitie in Religion, wil flye away: and it must be the penitent, humbled, and belee­uing heart, which must then abide it out, and endure the fanne of temptati­ons and persecutions.

And to conclude, Let not the Di­uell deceiue thee, in making thee ima­gine or hope to please God, and yet to let thy corruptions lie vnseene, and thy sins vnsearched out, least thereby thou marre all: for thou vsest not to lay vp-wheat in thy garners, vntil it be purged from the Chaffe: so thinke not to store vp any sauing knowledge, or any other grace of God in thy heart, vntill the chaffe of vanitie be first blowne away, that so the holy graces of God, may be layd vp in the garners of thy soule. And therefore questionlesse (to speake one word to touch our common pro­fessors, in the very sore of their soule) al knowledge that is stored vp in these impure and vnsearched hearts: is euen as Wheat layd vp in the Chaffe, which [Page 46] is (a thousand to one) sure to bee eaten vp by the chaffe, so that, when the win­nowing time of tryall and persecution comes: I feare, that such men will (for al their knowledge) shrinke aside, and betray the truth: there knowledge then prouing no better then chaffe, because it was layde vp in an vnholy heart: If therefore, thou wouldest stand and endure when Poperie, or persecution, or temptations come, if thou woul­dest abide the furie of the fanne of temptations: now, then exercise thy heart with the fanne of GODS law, Search and ransacke it, purge out the chaffe of corruption, and store vp knowledge in an holy heart, and a good conscience, and that will a­bide the violence of all temptations: yea, when God suffers the Diuell to doe with vs, as he did with Peter, to winnow vs like Wheate, to sift and trie vs, as he did Iob, with the furious winde of all his mallice: this know­ledge will proue Wheate, that will abide the winde, and gold that will a­bide [Page 47] the fire: thus glorious will it be in the ende, if we follow this holy Prophets councel, and Search our hearts.

And thus much for the first point (name­ly) the dutie of Searching heere comman­ded, in which wee haue stayed the lon­ger, because it is the foundation of all the rest: and this being wel laid, the whole building wilt goe vp the faster.

Now we come to the second gene­ral point here laid down: that is, whom must we Search? the Prophet aunswe­reth: your selues not other mē, but your selues. This search so vrged and infor­ced by the Prophet, must not be of o­ther mens hearts and liues, but of our owne: our owne are our charge, and not other mens: and therein is the say­ing true, which else is most false: Euery man for himselfe: for as euery soule must bee saued by it selfe so must it beleeue, Repent, and search it selfe.

[Page 48] The dutie therefore here comman­ded, is, for euery man that would haue his soule to be saued, to Search it, and reforme it, and leaue others to bee searched by themselucs. Here the ho­ly Ghost meetes with the common cor­ruption of this world, (and that is) that men are Eagle eyed, to see in­to the liues of other men, but to looke into their owne hearts, and liues, they are blinder then Moles: they can see moates in other mens liues, but dis­cerne not beames in their owne: wher­by it comes to passe, that they stumble and fall fowly: for the eies of most men are set vpon others, & not vpon them selues: and thereupon it is, that an e­uil, man seeing other men, & not him­selfe: thinkes best of himselfe, & worst of other men: but contrariwise, a good man seeing himselfe, & not other men, thinkes worst of himselfe, and better of other men: an euil man lookes out­ward, and iudgeth other men: but a good mā lookes homeward & iudgeth himselfe: and in iudging, condemnes [Page 49] himselfe, farre aboue other men: and that because by searching into his own heart and wayes, hee knowes that by himselfe, which he knowes not, by any man in the world besides.

So then we must search, not other men, but our selues: our owne hearts and our owne liues are our charge, and burthen: the liues of other men con­cerne vs not, being priuate mē, further thē, either to follow them being good, or take heede of them being euil: but to search, or to bee inquisitiue into them, is no dutie commaunded vs, but rather a foule & a base vice forbidden of God. Indeede Magistrates in their people, Pastours in their congregati­ons, and house-holders in their families are to search: but they can search onely for criminall causes, or open actuall sinnes: but this searching must bee of our hearts, which no man can search, but our selues onely. Few men haue a calling to enquire into other mens liues, but euery man hath a calling to search into himselfe: but (alas) men [Page 50] doe farre otherwise, they suffer them­selues to rotte in their owne sinnes, and erect an Inquisition ouer other mens liues, & it is to be seene in dayly expe­rience, that those men, who are the great Searchers and priers into other men, are the neglecters and forgetters of themselues: And contrariwise they who doe narrowly search themselues and their owne wayes, and looke into the corners of their owne hearts, doe finde so much worke to do with them­selues that they little busie themselues, with other men.

And thus much may suffice for that point.

It followeth.

O Nation not worthy to be beloued.

The third point: Who must search? the Iewes, who are here termed a Na­tion, not worthy to be beloued: & yet for al that, they are bid to search them­selues, that so vpon their Repentance, they might bee beloued. Where, wee [Page 51] may see the vnspeakable loue of God, and his wonderfull mercie, offering grace vnto such men, as are altogether vnworthy of it. Gods children are by nature like other men, and God findes nothing in them, why to respect them aboue others: but euen of his owne mercie, makes them worthy, who of themselues are not: therefore how worthy is that God, to haue all the loue of our hearts, who loued vs, when wee were not worthy to be beloued.

But let vs examine more particu­larly, why GOD doth call the Iewes a Nation, not worthy to bee beloued: I answere, God had blessed them aboue other Nations: He gaue them his Co­uenant of grace, and thereby made them his people, & commited to their trust, his holy word and Oracles: but Rom. 3. 2. he delt not so with other Nations, nei­ther had the Heathē knowledge of his lawes. Besides all this, they had a bet­ter Psal. 143. 20. land then others about them, it flowed with Milke, and Honie, (that is, with all commodities, & delights) [Page 52] and though their Countrie was but lit­tle: yet themselues so populous, and so powrefull, that whilest they pleased GOD, no enemie durst set vppon them.

Thus for soule and bodie, they were euery way a Nation, blessed of God, a people beloued of God aboue all o­thers. Now, how did this people (thus beloued of their God,) requite this his loue, which they had no more deser­ued, then any other Nation? Certain­ly, as they deserued it not afore they had it: so they requited it not, when they had it: but requited this loue of God with sinne, with rebellion, and with disobedience. They tempted him, they prouoked him to wrath, they pre­sumed of his mercy, & proued a most stubborne and stifnecked people, a fro­ward generation: Moses partly sawe this in his owne experience, & better discerned it in the spirit of Prophesie: and therefore wondering at this their wickednes, he cryed out, Do you thus re­quite the Lord: O foolish people, & vnwise?Deut. 32. 5[Page 53] thus: that is with sin, & disobedience, which is the only meanes to displease the Lord, & to prouoke him to wrath: for this cause, they are worthily called a foolish and vnkind people by Moses, and here, by the Prophet. A Nation, not worthy to bee beloued, namely, for their vnthankefulnes, and vnkindnes: which was such, as they not only were slacke, and carelesse in performance of such duties as God required: but euen multiplyed their sinnes, & committed those foule rebellions, which his soule hated.

And amongst many, the Prophet here in this Chapter, noteth three of their great sinnes: for which they were a Nation not worthy to bee beloued. Couetousnesse, Crueltie, and Deceite: all which were the more hainous and in­tollerable, because they were the sins of their Princes, their Rulers, and their priests: who should haue beene lights and examples to the rest.

Now, although euery sin in it selfe, is of that ill desert, as it is able to cast vs [Page 54] out of Gods fauour, and depriue vs of his loue: yet, behold, here God com­plaines, not vpon a little cause, but for wonderfull, & exceeding vnthankful­nesse, & vnkindnesse in them: who of all other should haue loued the Lord.

As a man cares not for hard vsage from him, whome hee esteemes not: but a little vnkindnesse doth greatly greiue a man, from him who is loued and respected: so is it with the Lord our God, he loued not the Gentiles, as hee did the Iewes, neither was hee so bountifull vnto them: and therefore, Psal. 147. Acts 17. verse. 30. (as we may see) though they liued al­wayes in ignorance, and continued al­wayes in disobedience, yet, the Text saith, the time of that ignorance God regarded not: but when as the Iewes, his owne people, whome he chose out of all people, & bestowed his loue vp­on them, and made his Couenant of grace with thē, when they became vn­kinde, vnthankfull, forgetfull, stub­borne, and rebellious, that caused the Lord euen to complaine of the indig­nitie, [Page 55] and to cry out by Moses. Doe yee thus requite the Lord: O foolish people & vnwise? And hereby the Prophet, O nation, not worthy to be beloued: & ther­fore ther is no man, but if he be asked what he thinkes of this Nation of the Iewes: he will answere, that they are a most vile & wicked people, a froward generation, and that they are worthy to taste deepely, of all Gods plagues, who so farre abused his loue and mer­cie.

But what doth this belong to them alone? and is Israel onely a Nation not worthy to be beloued? Nay, I may cry out with as good cause: O England, a nation not worthy to be beloued. For, God hath beene as good a God to vs, as he was to them: and we haue beene as vnkinde a people to him, as they were to him: But that I may bee free from discrediting our nation, and from defiling my owne Nest: let vs prooue both these points, and lay them open to the view of the world.

1 First therefore, the same mercies, [Page 56] and farre greater, haue beene powred & heaped vpon vs: hee hath called vs out of the darknesse; First, of Heathen­isme, & then of Poperie: his couenant of grace and saluation, he hath confir­med with vs, his treasures of his word and Sacraments, hee hath imparted to vs: his holy word neuer better prea­ched, and the mysteries thereof neuer more plainly opened, since the time of the Apostles: and as wee haue Religi­on, so wee haue it vnder a religious prince, whereby it comes to passe, that these blessings of saluation, wee inioy not in secret, or by stealth: but wee haue it countenanced by authoritie: so that religion is not barely allowed, but euen as it were thrust vpon men. Be­sides al this, wee haue a land also, that floweth with milke & hony, it is plen­tifull in all good things: we haue liber­tie, & peace vnder a peaceable prince, and the companions of peace: pros­peritie, plentie, health, wealth, corne, Woole, gold, siluer, abundance of all things, that may please the heart of [Page 57] man: thus hath God deserued the loue of England.

2 But now England, how hast thou requited this kindnesse of the Lorde? certainely euen with a greater measure of vnkindnesse: that is, with more and greater sinnes then euer Israell did: so that if Moses spake true of them: then may our Moses much more truly cry out against England, doest thou thus requite the Lord, thou foolish people? And if this Prophet said thus of Israell for three sins: then may it bee saide of England, for 300 sinnes (O England) a Nation not worthie to bee beloued: for thou hast multiplyed thy transgres­sions, aboue theirs of Israell; euen as though, thou haddest resolued with thy selfe, the more Gods kindnesse is hea­ped on thee, the more to multiply thy sinnes against him. For thou England, as thou hast requited the Lord with sinnes; so not with a few sinnes or small sinnes; or sinnes, which hardly coulde haue bene preuented: for that had bene a matter of some excuse, or not of so [Page 58] great complaint. But thy sinnes are ma­ny, and grieuous, and capitall. And which is worst of all, wilfull and affec­ted, euen as though God had deserued euill of vs and that therefore we ought malitiously to requite him.

If any man make doubt of this, and therefore thinke I speake too hardly of our Church: I will then deale plainly, and particularly, and rip vp the sores of our nation, that so they may bee healed to the bottome.

The common sins of England, wher­with the Lord is requited, are these. First, ignorance of Gods will and wor­ship, (I speake not of that compelled ig­norance, in many corners of our Land, which is to bee pittied because they want the meanes) but wilfull, and af­fected ignorance. Men are ignorant, euen because, they will bee ignorant. Meanes of knowledge were neuer so plentifull, and yet neuer more grosse ignorance: is not hee wilfully blinde, who will not open his eyes in the Light? and can there bee any dark­nesse [Page 59] at Noone day, but it must bee wilfull? but our Nation is darke and blinde in the Sunshine of the Gospell: and grossely ignorant, when the Gos­pell beates their eares, and light shines round about them; so, as if they closed not their eyes, and stopped not their eares, they could not, but both heare & see; who would looke for ignorance af­ter 35 yeares preaching? & yet, many are as ignorant, as if they had bin borne & brought vp vnder Poperie: so that our people are as euill as those in the dayes of Christ, of whom the holy ghost saith Light is come into the world; but men loue Iohn. 3. 1 [...] darknesse more then light: so knowledge is come into England: but many Eng­lishmen loue ignorance better then knowledge. Alas, how many thousands haue we in our Church, who know no more in religiō, then they heare in com­mon talke of al men, & which is worse, they thinke it sufficient also, and which is worst of all, whereas they might haue more, they will not, but care not for it.

[Page 60] 2 The second maine sin of England, is: Contempt of Christian Religion. Reli­gion hath bin among vs these fiue and thirtie yeares: but the more it is publi­shed, the more it is contemned, and re­proached of many: in so much, as there is not the simplest fellow in a country town, who, although he knowes not one point of religion, yet he can mock, and scorne such as are more religious then himself is: this is one of the moaths of England, that eates vp religion, this is grieuous in whomsoeuer, but most intollerable in two sorts of men. First, in them, who are altogether ignorant: that they should mocke they know not what. A pittifull thing to hear one, who himselfe cannot giue the meaning of one petition in the Lords praier, to vp­braide other men, because they are too forward: but it is the worst of all, when men of knowledge, and such as liue ci­uilly, and would be counted good chri­stians: and are indeede of the better sort: cannot abide to see others go, a lit­tle before them: but if they doe: pre­sently, [Page 61] they are Hypocrites and dissem­blers: Thus not prophanenesse, nor wickednesse; but euen Religion it selfe is a by-word, a mocking-stocke, and matter of reproach: so that in England, at this day, the man or woman that be­gins to professe religion, and to serue God, must resolue with himselfe to sus­taine mockes, and iniuries, euen as though he liued among the enimies of religion, and not among professors: and as religion increaseth and sprea­deth it selfe: so doth the number of these mockers: O what a cursed sinne is this? to contemne the greatest fauour, that God can giue vs; that is his holy religi­on: for the which, wee should rather praise him all the dayes of our liues. All that God can giue a man in this world, is his Gospell: what then can God giue to be regarded, when his gospel is con­temned?

This sinne was neuer amongst the Iewes: they indeed regarded it not so as it deserued, but who did euer make a mocke and a scorne of it but England? [Page 62] O England, how canst thou answere this. God sends thee the most preci­ous Iewell, that he can send to a Nati­on; and thou scornest it, and them that bring i [...], and them that receiue it; euen as though it were no blessing, but a curse: so that as Christ saith to the Iewes, for which of my good workes doe you stone mee; So may the Lord say to Iohn. 10. 32. England: I haue giuen thee a fruitfull land, a blessed Prince, gold and siluer, peace and libertie: plentie and prospe­ritie: for which of these (O England) doest thou contemne my religion? The least of these deserue loue; but England hath a better then all these; that is, his Gospell and word of saluation: and yet, that also is contemned (as beeing no­thing worth) and those which confesse it, and those that bring it, and conse­quently God himselfe that gaue it. If England had no more sinnes but this: this deserues, that it should bee saide of vs, that wee are a Nation vnworthy to bee loued aboue all Nations, for some Nations would haue religion, that they [Page 63] might loue it, but they cannot haue it: some haue it, and doe loue it: some haue it, and loue it not: but in noe Nation is it made a mocking-stocke, but in Eng­land. And where are those men, but in England, who (like the dog in the man­ger) will neither entertaine Religion themselues, nor suffer them that would: let vs in time take heede of this sinne, as a sinne that crieth to God, to reuenge so vile a dishonour done to his maiesty: neither is there any sinne that more cer­tainly foreshewes, and more forceably hastens the remouing of the Gospell from vs. For high time is it to cease lo­uing, wher loue procures disdaine. And to stay giuing, where giftes are scorned. There were then present inhabitants of London, Yorke, Cambridge, Ox­ford. Nor­wich, Bri­stow, Ips­wich colchester Worce­ster, Hull, Lin, Man­chester.

Carry home this lesson to your great townes & cities, where you dwel, for in these populous places are these great mockers, for wher God hath his profes­sors, the diuel hath his mockers; & repēt betimes of this sin, for hold on in moc­king, & be sure that God (who will not be mocked) will remoue his gospel frō you; but if you leaue this sin, and enter­taine the gospel, (as it worthily deserus) [Page 64] then be sure of it, God will continue Kendal, Co­uentry, Not­tingham, Northamp­ton, Bathe, Lincolne, Durby, Lei­cester, Ches­ter. Newcas­tle, and of many other most popu­lous cities and townes. of England the Gospell, to you, and your posteri­ties after you, in the face of al your ene­mies round about you.

3 The third common sinne of Englande, is, Blasphemie, many waies, but especially in vaine swearing, false swearing, and forswearing, and the a­buse of all the names and tytles of the Lord God. This sinne is general, euen ouer the whole land, especially, in Fayres, and Markets, where men for a little gaine, wil not care to cal the Lord of Hostes to be witnesse to a lye, and the God of truth, to testifie an vntruth. And which is worst of all, Gods holy name is vsed in vaine oathes, and ordi­narie talke. When men haue no cause to sweare at all: so that, it is most la­mentable to see and obserue, that the name of any man of honour, or wor­ship, is vsed more reuerently, and lesse abused, then that fearefull and glorious name: the Lord our God.

4 The fourth generall and great sinne is, Prophanation of the Saboath. A [Page 65] common sinne euery where, and yet so great a sinne, that where it raignes, in that Country, congregation, family, man or woman, there is noe feare of God, nor any true grace in them: for the keeping of the saboath, is the main­taining, increasing, and publishing of religion.

5 The fift sinne of our Nation, is, vniust dealing in bargaining betwixt man and man. How hard is it to finde an honest, simple, plaine dealing man: and that euen in such great assemblies as this is, I feare present experience wil testifie: you are now many thousands gathered together, some to buy, some to sell, some to exchange: Remember, that I haue tolde you, an honest hear­ted and plaine dealing man is hard to finde: therfore labour to approue your selues sincere hearted men. remember the counsell of the holy Ghost: Let no man oppresse nor defraude his brother, in bargaining: for the Lord is the auenger of all such things These sinnes are gener­all and vniuersall as a cancker: And so [Page 66] are the sinnes of the 6. 7. and 8. Com­mandements (though they be not alto­gether so cōmon as these be) Murthers, Adulteries, Vsuries, Briberies, Extorsions, Cousenages, they are a burthen, vnder which, our earth groanes; and they cry against vs to heauen, so that vpon as good or much beter cause may it be said to vs, as to the Iewes: O Nation not wor­thy to be beloued.

Looke at the outward face of our Church, at the signes of Gods loue, which are amongst vs, and at Gods dealing with vs; and behold, we are a most beautifull Church, a glorious Nation, a Nation to bee admired, and wondred at: but looke at the liues of our ordinarie professors, looke at our sinnes, and at our requiting of Gods loue: and we are a people of Sodome, as full of iniquities as they were, whose sinnes are so many, so rife, and so ripe; that at the last they wil euē bring down fire & brimstone, or some other strange iudgement vpon vs, if repentance doe not preuent it, or the cries and prayers [Page 67] of holy men stay not Gods hands. So, then let vs all here assembled, grant & confesse, that we are a Nation so farre from being worthy to bee beloued, as that we are most worthy to be hated, & to haue all the wrath of God powred vpon vs.

Now then, are we so? and shall wee continue so still? Nay, that is the worst, and most wretched of all: then let euery one of vs learne this duty, enter into our selues, Search our hearts and liues, that they may lye open to our owne sight, to the confusion of vs in our selues, that in God by repentance wee may bee raised vp.

Our sinnes lye open before the face of God, and stincke in his presence, and and cry for vengeance: and before the face of Gods Angels, who bewaile it, and before the face of the Diuell, who reioyceth in our confusions: and shall they lye hid onely to our selues? Now then, if wee would haue them hidde from God, and stoppe the cry, that they make against vs, and keepe them [Page 68] from Sathan, who accuseth vs for them: wee must so Search our selues, that they may lye open to our owne hearts: remember thou thy sinnes, and God will forget them: lay them open before thy owne face, and God will hide them from his: write them vp for thy owne selfe, and God will blot them out of his remembrance: but if contra­riwise, thou hidest them: then assure thy selfe, the more thou hidest, and bu­riest them, the more open doe they lye in the face of GOD: and then what will followe, but that they will all bee disclosed at the last day, to thy eternall confusion. Therefore a­gaine, and againe, I exhort you in the name of GOD, Search your selues, finde out your sinnes, confesse them to GOD, freely, and ingeni­ously; confesse their desert to bee Hell and damnation, humble your hearts to God, cry and call for pardon, as for life and death, purpose and pro­mise to leaue them, begin a new course of life, beleeue stedfastly, and doubt not [Page 69] of pardon and forgiuenesse in the blood of Christ, continue in that faith, and that newe course of life: So may Englande preuent Gods iudgements, and quench that great action of vn­kindnes, which God hath against them, and become a Nation as worthy (vpon their faith and repentance) in Christ to be beloued: as for their peace and pros­peritie, they haue bene of all nations of the earth admired.

Hitherto, of the third generall point.

4 The fourth generall point in this exhortation, is the time limitted them, when they should Search. Before the Decree come forth &c. As though the Prophet should say. Israell, repent, before God execute his iudgements on thee. For behold the gratious dea­ling of God: Man sinneth, his sinnes deserue plagues: but GOD presently plagueth not, but deferres it, he puts a time betwixt the sinne and the punish­ment (ordinarily:) this he doth to shew his [Page 70] mercie to mankinde, because that hee would not destroy them, if they would amende. Therefore, after the sinne, he smites not presently, but puttes of his punishment, that in the meane time man may Repent. Here the Prophet compares the Lord to a mother; for as she conceiues the fruite in her wombe, and beares it a long time, ere she bring it out: so the Lord after a mans sinnes, or a peoples sinnes, conceiue (that is) ordaines, and decreeth a iudgement for it, but he keepes it vp, and all that while he heares it: But as she, when her time is come, then trauailes and bringes forth: so, when the time that God hath appointed, is come, and stil sinne is not repented of: then his iustice trauailes to be deliuered of that iudgemēt, which mercy hath kept vp so long a time. Thus the old world had an hundred & twentie yeares giuen them for time of repentance; all that while God was in conceiuing, at last when there sinnes were ripe, and no hope of amendment: then GOD trauelled, and brought [Page 71] forth a fearefull byrth, namely the vni­uersall flood, to wash away, and take reuenge vpon the vniuersall iniquities of those times. So many hundred yeares he gaue vnto the Iewes, long hee was in conceiuing their destruction, and oftentimes hee had it at the bring­ing forth, as in the captiuitie of Baby­lon, and vnder Antiochus; yet his mer­cy stayed it: and still hee trauailled longer: telles them here by the Pro­phet, that yet the Decree is not come forth, (though it bee conceiued:) but at last when Israell would not Re­pent, but grewe worse, and worse; (as in Christ his time) then hee could containe no longer, but trauelled in­deede, and though it bee with griefe, yet hee hath brought foorth: and what? a most fearefull byrth, euen an vtter disolation of that kingdome and Countrey, of their Citie, and Temple, and a dispertion of their Na­tion ouer all the world: but as a wo­man at last is deliuered with daunger, and difficultie, with paine and sor­rowe: [Page 72] so the Lord long conceiues, but at last bringes forth his iudgements: yet it is with griefe and vnwillingnesse, and hee is loath (as it were) and much agrieued to execute his most iust iudgements on those, who haue pro­fessed his name: hee often touched the Iewes a little, and as being vnwilling to smite them: hee drue backe his hande againe: but at last when their sinnes did so increase, and were so strong, that they euen did wring out, by violence his plagues from him, then with much bewayling of their great misery (as wee may see in Christ, weeping for them,) hee executes his iudgements on them. But as they are long a comming: so, when they come forth, they were the heauier; as a child, the more fulnesse of time it hath, is the greater, the liuelier, and the stronger: so, Gods iudgements, the longer God deferreth them, and is in conceiuing them, the heauier are they, when they come: that is manifest in the Iewes▪ once his owne people, for he hath destroyed [Page 73] their land with an irrecouerable de­struction, and smitten their posteritie with a blindnes of minde til this houre, so that to this day, when the old Testa­ment is read, the vaile is ouer their eies, that they cannot see the light of Christ Iesus, but plodde on in fearefull and palpable blindnesse.

This Doctrine hath speciall vse to this our Church, to teach vs to looke to our selues betimes, and try our owne wayes, and turne to the Lord, for wee cannot tell how farre of his iudgments are: in reason they must needs be near, they haue beene so long deferred, and yet beene so iustly deserued of vs. Cer­tainly God hath long beene in con­ceiuing iudgements and plagues for the sinnes of England, and often hath Gods hand beene vpō vs by warre▪ fa­mine, pestilence, inundations: and yet it hath been puld backe againe: and his sword hath beene put vp into his sheath, and God hath stayed his birth euen in the very trauell, and we haue escaped, euen as a man, whose necke [Page 74] hath beene vpon the blocke, and the Axe holden vp to strike: so then, yet the day is not come, yet we haue time: happie wee that euer wee saw this day, if now wee haue grace to repent, and search our hearts, for then wee shall stay this Iudgement decreed, that it shall neuer come forrth against vs: but if we deferre to repent, & put off from day to day, and lye rotting still in our sinnes: then know and be assured that as the Decree is established, so it must needes come foorth: and then, when iudgement is come forth, & the stroke stricken, Repentance is too late: there­fore what he said to the Iewes, I say vn­to vs, Search thy selfe, O England, (a Nation not worthy to be beloued) be­fore the Decree come forth, which is al­ready past against thee.

Thus much for the fourth point.

5 Now followeth the last point: the reason of all. Why should we search our selues? The reason is included in the [Page 75] fourth point: For there is a Decree come forth against thee. And though the exe­cution be deferred, and though God be vnwilling to take it out, yet without Repentance, it is most certaine, it shall come foorth and bee executed at the last. In one word, this is the reason. Re­pent, or else certainely God will take vengeance: But (will mans heart say) is this true? Or rather these bee but words to feare men, and to keepe them in awe. I aunswere, for the proofe and experience hereof, neuer goe further, then this place, and present example wee haue in hand: the Prophet bids them Search, Search, and repent, else, as certainly, as there was a iudgemēt con­ceiued, so certainly it should be execu­ted vpon thē: they would not heare, nor Search, nor repent: but what fol­lowed; let all mē iudge whether God is not true, of his word to them or no: yea, alas, who seeth not that God hath trauelled indeede, and hath brought foorth a fearefull iudgement on them, and hath made them for these thou­sand [Page 76] yeares and a halfe, the gazing stocke, the by word, and the amaze­ment of all the world.

Thus was it threatned to the Iewes, and thus it is performed: and certain­ly thus hath it beene threatned, & thus shall it be performed to thee, O Eng­land, except thou preuent the iudge­ments that are comming: O happy England, that I may say to thee, it is yet but comming. For as for the miserable Iewes: vpon them (alas) it is come al­ready: to those poore soules it can bee said no more, Repent before the De­cree come forth: for it is now past: but thou art happie, for thy day is not yet come: yet I may say to thee: Re­pent before the Decree come forth: and O happie England, that thou mayest heare this worde: (Before) sounding in thine eares. Therefore my beloued brethren, who are heare assembled out (almost) of euery corner of this kingdom, heare my words: and carry them home with you into al countries. God is the same God still, as iust, and [Page 77] as iealous, as euer hee was: our sinnes are as ill, nay, much viler then the Iewes were: how can it be then, but that must fall to vs that fell to them? therefore the zeale of Gods glorie, and my desire of your saluations, make mee, that I dare not flatter: but tell you the truth: that is, that out of all question, if we search not our selues & repent, there is a ge­nerall iudgement in preparing for vs: certainely the Decree is out, and what can stop the execution of it, but Repen­tance: God hath long spared, and hee hath been long in trauelling, therefore (though nothing can be said in way of prophesie) I am in my conscience per­swaded to feare, and that out of infalli­ble grounds of the word of God, that a plague, and a iudgement, and that most fearefull, hangs ouer England: & that it is alreadie pronounced vpon this Nation, and shall be as certainely executed, without a visible reformati­on: and because I may seeme to speak somewhat at large, giue mee leaue to giue you the reasons inducing mee [Page 78] hereunto.

1 First, the Gospel hath beene preached these fiue and thirtie yeares, and is daily more and more, so that, the light thereof neuer shone more glori­ously, since the Primitiue Church: yet for al this, there is a general ignorance, generall of all people, generall of all points, yea, as though there were no preaching at all: yea, when Poperie was newly banished, there was more knowledge in many, then is now in the body of our Nation: and the more it is preached, the more ignorant are many, the more blinde, and the more hardened (euen as a Stithi [...] (the more it is beaten vpon, the harder it is) so they, the more they heare the Gospell, the lesse esteeme they it, and the more they contemne it; and the more God calles, the deafer they are: & the more they are commanded, the more they disobey. We Preachers may cry, till our Lunges flie out, or bee spent within vs, and men are mooued no more then stones, O alas, what is this, or what [Page 79] can this bee: but a fearefull signe of distruction? Will any man endure al­wayes to bee mocked, then how long hath God beene mocked? Will any man endure to stand knocking conti­nually? If then God hath stood knoc­king at our hearts fiue & thirtie yeares: is it not now time to bee gone, vnlesse we open presently?

But, if we wil know what this argu­eth, to contemne the Gospel, and not to repent, when the word is so abun­dantly preached: read the Storie of Ely his wicked sonnes. Hee spake vn­to them, and gaue them godly coun­saile, but they hearkened not vnto the 1. Sam. 2. 13. voyce of their Father: But will some say, that is no great matter, not to heare their Father is a common thing: but marke what followeth. They would not beare their Father, because the Lord would destroy them: a fearefull thing. Euen so it is with a nation, or a people: are they taught, and are they worse and worse? take heede: If Elyes sonnes o­bey not, it is, because God will destroy them.

[Page 80] If therefore Ely, and many Elyes haue spoken to England, and England heares not, England obeyeth not, Eng­land repents not: take heed the Lord in heauē say not, England will not heare the voyce of the Prophets, because I will destroy it. Let no man say, wee take vpon vs to prophesie: wee onely giue warning, and shewethe daunger, by example of the like.

My second reason is this. One iudge­ment executed: and not working Re­pentance, is alwayes a fore-runner of another, that Rule is certaine, and an euident truth, and needs no prouing. Now; we haue beene visited with Fa­mines, Earthquakes, pestilences, inun­dations, Thunder & lightning in win­ter, and most strange & vnseasonable weather: but alas, all these haue taken no effect: where is the humiliation, re­pentance and reformation which they haue wrought? therefore it must needs bee, there remaines behinde a greater iudgement. Men may be so madde to thinke these to be ordinary things, and [Page 81] to come by course of Nature, and or­dinarie causes: but certainly, they are the shaking of the Rod, and fore-run­ners of a greater iudgement, vnlesse Repentance cut of their course. For looke as one cloud followeth another, till the Sunne consume them: so one iudgement hastens after another, and repentance onely is the Sunne, which must dispel them.

3 Thirdly, it stands with the iustice of God, according as he hath reuealed it in the Scripture, especially in Deut. 28. out of the whole Chapter, it must needs be gathered as a Rule. I wil curse that people which breake my lawes: now we may not deny but this land of ours, is for abundance of sinne, a people of Sodome. All kinde of sinnes, in all e­states of men, rage and raigne euery day more and more: therefore I con­clude, that vnlesse wee repent, and so dissolue this cloude of iudgement, that hangs ouer our heads: it cannot be, but a most fearefull tempest is to come at the last, and when it is come, it will be [Page 82] too late to wish we had done it. There­fore in the bowels of Christ Iesus, Let this be to intreate and exhort you all, to search and looke into your selues, that so Repenting and changing your wayes, you may get the sword againe into his sheath, which is already drawn out, but yet hath not stricken home, & may quench the wrath which is al­ready kindled, but yet burns not out as it wil do, if by repentance we quench it not: & do this euery one as you tender the saluatiō of your owne soules, & the continuance of the Gospel to this glo­rions Nation, and the peace and pro­sperous state of this Church & com­mon wealth. For let men make what causes they will, it is certainely sinful­nesse that ouerturnes kingdomes, and changeth states, as all these kingdomes and states haue felt, who haue continu­ed finally to contemne the Gospel.

It followeth:

And you be as Chaff, that passeth on a day.

[Page 83] The Prophet proceedeth, & descri­beth more plainely, the manner and state of that plague, which God will send vpon thē: the meaning was part­ly opened before, to bee in effect thus much; Search your selues, least God take his fanne and try you, because you would not try your selues, and fin­ding [...]ou vppon the tryall, not sound wheat, but light chaff: blow you to hel with the winde of his wrath: the Meta­phor which the Prophet vseth is this, he compares the Lord to a husband man, great and rich, the whole world is his corne-field: seueral nations, (as this of ours for one,) are his heapes of Corne: but these heapes of corne be ful of chaf, that is, these particular Churches, are ful of hypocrites: now a wise husband­man letteth corne and chaffe lye toge­ther no longer, then til the winde doth blow, and then he appoints his fanning time to seuer his corne from his chaffe, and to blow away his chaffe, & lay vp his corne: so God, the great & wise husbandman, will not let the Chaffe [Page 84] lye for euer amongst the Wheat, hee hath therefore appointed his fanning times, when to blow the Chaffe into hell, and to gather his wheat into hea­uenly garners.

Now Gods winnowing times are two: the one is at the last day, after this life, and that is Gods great winnowing day of all his Corne (that of al [...] men) when the bad shall bee seuered from the good for euer, neuer to be mingled againe with thē, but by the strong and powerfull fanne of his last and finall iudgement to be blowne into Hel: the winde of whose wrath, at that day, shall bee stronger to blow them all away, then al the winde in the world to blow away one handfull of light Chaffe.

2 Gods other fanning time, is in this world: and that is also double. The one is, when the word is preached: the preaching of the word is one of Gods fans. For when the Gospell is preached to a Nation or Congregation, it fannes them, and tries them, & purgeth them, and so seuers them, that a man may see [Page 85] a manifest difference of the chaffe and the wheate, that is, of the godly man, and the wicked man: this preaching of the Gospell, doth Iohn the Baptist, Matth. 3. expresly call a Fanne: where the holy Ghost pursueth this whole Metaphor, most plainely speaking of Christ, hee saith; Whose Fanne is in his hand, and hee will [...]roughly purge his floore, and gather his w [...]eat into his garner, but the chaffe he will burne with fire vnquenchable. The winde of this fanne of the word prea­ched is so strong, as that it seuers the Chaffe from the Wheate, that is, good professors from hypocrites in the vi­sible Church, and blowes so strongly vpon the wicked, that it brings them to the beginning of Hell euen in this world, for it so worketh vpon the con­science, as if it cannot conuert them, it strikes them with feare, terrour & tor­ment, either in life or at death, which torment of conscience is the very fla­shes of hell-fire.

But, when this first Fanne of the word, will not serue to bring men to repen­tance, [Page 86] (for the word preached, doth not confound a man actually, but only pronounce the sentence, and thereby strike the conscience) then God hath another fanne, and that is the fanne of his iudgements: and that fanning or win­nowing time is, when he executes his vengeance and his iudgements on a Nation: this is his latter fanne, [...] the first will not preuaile, this [...] his powerfull and strong fanne driuen a­bout with the winde of his wrath, this fanne went ouer the olde world, and swept them all away, and went ouer the nation of the Iewes, and we see they are no more.

1 These three fannes of God make a three-fold separation of the Chaffe from the Wheate, that is, of the wic­ked from the elect: with the fanne of his word which is powerfull, he seuers them in affection, and disposition, and makes a distinction of them, so, as generally the Wheate is knowne to be Wheate, and Chaffe discerned to be Chaffe, by the preaching of the word: [Page 87] but though the tare be knowne to bee tare, yet both grow together, so that the word onely seuers them in affection, and sets seueral notes of distinction vp­on them both.

2 But then the second fanne of his Iudgements is more violent, for there­by, he seuereth them a sunder in soule, gathering the godly men, as his wheat into the heauens, & blowing the soules of the wicked into hell: but yet the bodyes of them both lye together, as partakers of the same iudgement, so subiect to the same corruption, and are all lodged in the same graue of the earth, and death hath like dominion o­uer them all.

3. But afterwards at the last day, at Gods great haruest, & great winnow­ing time, he then with the winde of his power, seuereth them a sunder in soule and body. Wheate from the Chaffe, sheepe from the Goates, & separateth them, neuer to be mingled againe for euer & euer: and then with the winde of his wrath, he blowes the chaffe into [Page 88] fire vnquenchable, and with his louing fauour gathereth his wheate into the euerlasting and glorious garners of heauen.

So then the first seuereth them in affection. The second in soule for a time. The third, actually in soule and body for euer and euer.

Now of these three winnowing times, the holy Ghost speaketh here properly of the second: namely the fan of Gods iudgements: so that, the meaning of the Metaphor is this: search your selues and repent betimes, least God come vpon you with some fearefull iudgements: because you haue so long contemned the fan of the word, and fin­ding you too light to abide the try all, doe take you away in the iudgement, and cast you into hell: for as sure as the fan of the word hath made difference of you, which are chaffe, and which are wheate, so sure shall the fanne of his iudgements blow away the chaffe to hell and damnation.

Thus much for the meaning.

[Page 89] Now for the vse, for vs in England, the case stands thus: Our church doubtlesse is Gods corne field, & we are the corne heape of God: and those Brownisles and Sectaries are blinde and besotted, who cannot see that the church of England is a godly heape of Gods corne: but with­all, we must cōfesse, we are ful of chaffe: that is, of prophane, & wicked Hypo­crits, whose hearts and mindes abound in sinnes and rebellions: and many of our best professors are also too full of chaffe (that is) of corruptions, and doe giue themselues too much libertie in many sinnes: but alas, the pure wheate, how thinne is it scattered? howe hard to finde a man (at least a family) which dedicate themselues to the Lord in ho­ly and sincere obedience, and labour to make conscience of all sinnes: now therefore, seeing wee are Gods corne field, and we haue some pure wheat a­mongst much chaffe, therefore God will winnow vs, to find out the corne, if hee haue but one corne of wheat in a handfull of chaffe, but one good man [Page 90] of many, he will stirre all the heape for those fewe cornes, hee will not care to blow all the chaffe to hell, to finde out those fewe cornes of wheat, to lay them vp in heauen: so that out of all question, England being so ful of chaffe, must look to be winnowed.

Nowe for the first Fanne of his word, it hath beene vsed in this land these fiue and thirtie yeares, and that as powerfully, and as plentifully as any where in the worlde, and yet (alas) many are more Godlesse, more ignorant, more prophane then euer they were, yea wickednesse grow­eth, and the Chaffe increaseth aboue the Wheate: bee sure therefore, that God will bring his second Fanne vp­on vs; because wee will not suffer the first and the milde and gentle fanne of his word to try and search vs: therefore hee will bring the fearefull fanne of his iudgements, and with it, hee will blowe soule & body into hell, with those our sinnes & corruptions, which we would not suffer the Fanne of Gods worde to [Page 91] blowe from vs. The first hath so long blowen in vaine, that the second must needs come vpon vs, & it hath already begun to blow: three or four blasts haue blown ouer vs; famin, pestilence, earth­quakes, fire, water, winde, these haue so blowne some of vs, that they haue taken away a great number of vs. For vs that remaine, this onely remaines, that wee In the plagu at London there dyed some weeks almost 2000 a weeke in 92. but in 1603. there dyed 3300. in a weeke. strengthen our selues by grace, to be a­ble to stand against the next blast, for come it wil, & when it comes, no wealth nor worldly thing can inable vs to en­dure it, onely faith & repentance, & the grace of God will stand at that day. Now therefore, in that so feareful a fan­ning abideth vs: seeing it is so neer (as appeareth by the blasts already past o­uer vs, which are nothing but the fore­runners of a greater tēpest:) what shuld be our care (except wee care not to be blown body & soule into hel) but to la­bour to efchew this feareful fan of Gods wrath: or at least, if it come vpō vs, that it may not blow vs to hell, but hasten vs to heauen. It thy heart be touched to [Page 92] aske, how this may be: I answere thee, onely to follow the Prophets aduice in this place, by Searching and trying our selues. The way to escape Gods triall, is to try thy selfe: and to escape Gods iudgement, to be a iudge to thine owne soule: and so the way to escape the fear­full fanne of God, is to fanne thine own heart by the law of God. For whomso­euer the first fanne (that is the word of God) doth worke vpon: these men are neuer blowen away with the fanne of Gods iudgements. O then, entertaine the word of God into thy heart, submit thy soule vnto it, let it pearce, & try, and ransacke thy heart, and lay before thee thy wretched estate by thy sinnes, and when thou seest thynakednesse and mi­sery, confesse it, bewayle it, be humbled for it, cry & call for mercy and forgiue­nesse; pray against thy speciall sinnes, striue to purge them out as the poyson of thy soule, craue grace from God a­gainst al thy sinnes: and if thou seest any sins more welcome to thy nature, more deere vnto thee, and which more pre­vaile [Page 93] against thee, then others doe: pray against these sinnes, and striue against them aboue all: and endeuour, that by the fanne of Gods word, they may bee blowen away from thee. When thou hast done this, then marke, what will come of it: when thou hast fanned thy selfe, God will not fanne thee: but when the fanne of his iudgemēt comes; and bloweth so strongly vpon the wic­ked, then the Lord finding thee alrea­dy fanned, and clensed by his word, will spare thee, and his iudgement shall ei­ther blow ouer thee, and passe by thee vntouched (as ouer Lot, in the destruc­tion of Sodom) or else shall fanne out all thy corruptions, and blow thee vp to heauen, to be laid vp as pure wheat in the heauenly garners, and mansions of glory, which Christ ascended to pre­pare for thee.

Now then amongst those many bu­sinesses, with which this world doth comber euery one of vs (all which shall perish with the worlde it selfe) let vs good brethren, spare some time for this [Page 94] great businesse. Martha may be com­bred about many things, but this is that one thing, which is necessarie: therefore whatsoeuer is done, let not this bee vn­done. Once a day put thy selfe and thy life vnder the fanne of Gods lawe, try thy selfe what thou art and thy life, how thou liuest. Once a day keepe a Court in thy conscience, call thy thoughts, thy wordes, and thy deedes to their tryall: let the ten Commaundements passe vpon them, and thy sins and cor­ruptiōs which thou findest to be chaffe, blow them away by repētance, so shalt thou remaine pure and cleane wheate, fit for the house and Church of God in this world, & for his kingdome in hea­uen. But, if we will not doe this, then alas, what wil follow? my heart grieueth to vtter it: but I must vnlesse I should be a false prophet: And therefore I wil. Our long peace, plentie, and ease, haue bred great sinnes, so great that they reach to heauen, and prouoke Gods Maiestie to his face, and so strong, that they will violently drawe downe iudg­ments [Page 95] from God vpon vs: which when they come, they will bee so powerfull, and so violent, that they will blow vs a­way like chaffe, and bring this king­dome to some miserable ruine. O there­fore how happy are wee, if we can en­tertaine this Doctrine, and practise it: for in so doing, we shall preuent Gods iudgements, wee shall continue the Gospell to this land, and preserue this glorious Nation from being destroyed or dispeopled, by some fearefull iudge­ment.

Beloued, you come hither to this At Stur­bridg faire place, purposely to buy and sell and thereby, to better your estates in this world: how happy then are you, if be­sides the good markets, you make for your bodies and estates, you learne also how to make your selues abide the tri­all of Gods iudgements, and how to be made pure corne, fit to replenish the garners of heauen, & how to continue Gods fauour and the Gospell to this Nation. If thou goe away with this les­son, thou hast a Iewel more worth, then [Page 96] if thou shouldest goe home possessed or all the huge riches of this Faire: you call this and such like times, Faire times: but if thou learne this lesson right, then thou maist say, that this was the fairest day in deede, that euer shon vpon thee, since thou wast borne. This pretious Iewell which I haue spoken of all this while, I heare offer vnto thee. Euery one brings hither some-thing to bee solde, this is the merchandize that I bring and set to sale vnto you: what euer commo­ditie any of you bring, it is from some quarter of this land, but all is from the earth: but this that I bring, it is from heauen: and all the earth cannot yeelde it: and as it is from heauen, so it is of a heauenly vertue, and will worke that which all the wealth in this faire is not able to doe: therefore cast not, to buy the basest, and let passe the best of all: and neuer alledge that it is aboue thy compasse, and being a Iewell, it is too deare and costly for thee: for I offer it freely vnto you, and to euery one of you, I pronounce vnto you, from the Esa. 55. [Page 97] Lord, that here this blessed doctrine is offered vnto you all, in his name, free­ly, and that you may buy it without mo­ney. Happie is that day when thou comming so farre to buy things for thy bodie, and paies so deare for them, doest meete with so pretious a Iewell, the ver­tue whereof, is to saue thy soule, and payest nothing for it. Thou maiest hereafter reioyce and say: I went to buy and sell, and to helpe my body: but I haue also learned to saue my soule. I went thither to helpe to maintaine my owne estate: but I haue learned to helpe to maintaine England in prosperitie: for assuredly, if wee would all of vs learne this lesson, and practise it, we might as­sure our selues of the glorious prosperi­ty of England, to cotinue from generatiō to generation: whereas alas, if we conti­nue & go forward in our sins▪ & impe­nitency, it is greatly to bee feared, that neither the Gospell nor this peace, will reach to our posterities. Therefore now to make an end: I once againe: & lastly, cōmend this doctrine to you al, & euery [Page 98] one of you (for this marchandise that I bring, is of that nature, that though some take it, yet there is also enough for euery one) and I commend it vnto you, euen from the very mouth of God him­selfe? thinke of it I charge thee, as euer thou lookest to appeare before the face of Christ Iesus the great iudge, at the last day; and if thou wouldest escape the rigour of that iudgement, enter now in­to iudgement with thy selfe, and search thy selfe: if thou now wilt not receiue this doctrine, then shal it at the last day be a bill of Enditement against thee, for if it saue thee not, it shal condemne thee, thinke of it therefore seriously, as a mat­ter that concernes thy soule and bodie: yea, and thy posteritie, and this whole Realme, all which shall smart for it, if we repent not. And if the body of our people, and those, whose harts are wed­ded to this world, wil not enterteine this doctrine: then I turne vnto you that feare the Lord, and to you I direct my last warning, Search, O search, and try your hearts and liues, renewe and re­uiue [Page 99] your faith and repentance, that if iudgements doe come and blowe vpon this Nation, and driue the Gospell from it, and it to hell: that yet you may haue a testimony to your consciences, that you did not pull down this generall ca­lamitie, but for your parts laboured to haue preuented it, by your earnest pray­ers and heartie repentance: that so, the posteritie ensuing; may not curse you, but speake reuerently of you, and praise God for you, and wish that al had done as you did; for then had they enioyed this goodly land, and al Gods blessings with it, as wee their forefathers did be­fore them: & so shall our names not rot, but flourish amongst the posterities to come, which shall bee partakers of the desolation: And when we haue renew­ed our repentance, let vs then euery one of vs, deale with the Lord by earnest prayer for this Church and Nation, that the Lord would shew his mercy vppon it, and continue vnto it, this place & the Gospell: it is nothing with the Lord to doe it, his powerfull hand is not shorte­ned, [Page 100] he can continue our peace, when the Papists look for hurli-burlies, he can continue the gospell, when they hope to set vp their Idolatry againe: let vs therefore apply the Lord with our prai­ers, and with Moses set our selues in the breach, and pray for the ignorances of the multitude, and bewaile their sinnes, who bewaile not their owne, So did Eze. 14. 13. 14. Noah, Daniel, and Iob, in their ages, and prayed for the people in generall cala­mities: Let vs all be Noahs, Daniels, and Iobs, in our generations; if we doe thus: then when Iudgements come, we shall either turne them away from our Na­tion, or at the least wee shall deliuer our owne soules.

Let vs nowe turne to the Lorde in prayer, and because it cannot be hoped, but that this our generall sinfulnesse must needs end with some heauy Iudg­ment: let vs desire the Lord still to de­fer our deserued punishments, and still to spare vs, and to giue vs time and lea­sure to repent: that so, we entering into our selues, and searching our hearts, and [Page 101] turning to the Lord: wee may turne a­way his imminent iudgemēts, and that when his wrath doth burne out indeed, we may then bee counted worthie in Christ, to escape those things which must needes come vpon the worlde. A­men.


Lament. 3.

Let vs Search and try our waies, and turne againe to the Lord.

Trin. vni Deo gloria.

TO THE RIGHT Worſhip …

TO THE RIGHT Worshipfull Sir Edward Cooke Knight, his Maiesties Atturney Ge­neral, & Sir Thomas Heskith Knight, Atturney of his Highnesse Court of Wardes and Liueries, and one of his Maiesties Honourable Counsell in the North, Grace and peace from Iesus Christ.

RIght Worshipfull, giue mee leaue to put you both in one Epistle, whō one seruice, one place, one profession, one order, and one Religion haue so neerely combined: As you are Brethren many waies, and especially in the professi­on & practise of one Religion: to vouch­safe to be ioynt Patrons of this little after-birth, this faetus posthumus, of that worthy man Ma. Perkins, now deceased. I send you heere one of the shortest, and one of the sweetest of his Treatises: had it bene as well brought foorth by me, as it was begot by him it had beene a child not vnworthy of so great a father: but seeing it is now as a fatherles child, be you the Tutors to this Orphane, at whose hands Orphanes and Wards haue euer bene well vsed. The fa­ther [Page] whilst he liued was a shining light in this our Church, and beeing dead, is a shi­ning starre in heauen, for he turned manie to righteousnesse, and his doctrine wil shine Dan. 12. 3. in Christian Churches whilst the Sunne shineth vpon the earth. The subject of this Treatise is the Ministerie, whereof are layde downe the duties and dignities. And well dooth he couple these two together: for some can challenge the dignities of the Ministerie, and cunningly cast the duties from their shoulders: others performe the duties, but are kept from the dignities duly belonging to that calling: but as hee that will doe the duties, may iustly challenge the dignities, so he that will expect the dig­nities, must doe the duties of a Minister: therefore in this building, these two beames are in great wisedome well set together by this wise Maister builder, and so closely coupled, as the idle or ambitious man cannot looke at the dignities, but hee must withal behold the duties, nor the painful & laborious man see his dutie, but withal sha [...] see the dignitie thereto belonging.

And surely (Right Worshipfull) none might better haue written of this subiect then he: for who may more worthily de­scribe [Page] the dignities of the Ministerie, then he, who neither by doctrine nor conuer­sation, was euer the least disgrace vnto his Ministerie? or who may better challenge the honour of his calling, then he who was euer an honour to his calling; And who might better teach the duties of the Mini­sterie, then hee who so discharged them, as En [...]ie it selfe cannot iustly reproue, and the enemies thēselues cannot but Answere to Perkins his refor­med Catho­like, by B. a Priest. com­mend? and who may better teach them to others, then he that carefully practised thē in his owne person: And as none could be a fitter Author of this discourse then hee, so not many fi [...]ter Patrons then your selues: not many in your profession better schollers, nor any that better loue schollers then your selues: & you are some of those few in this wicked age, who willingly yeld all dignities and due reuerence to such Mi­nisters as you see willingly to discharge the duties of good Ministers. Well would it be with the Ministerie of England, (and the better with it, the better with Eng­land) if all as great as you, were as good friends to it as you. And if the Papists ex­cept, and say how can this be, for that you haue beene persecuters of their Priests, let [Page] me answere once for you, who often an­swere for many distressed men: they per­secute you with slander, that say you per­secuted thē, (but be content to beare your part in popish slanders, with our Prince and state, our Counsellers & Cleargy, our Parliaments and Lawes, for none of these haue escaped these viperous tongues) for though you haue executed the Lawes vpon some of them in your seuerall places, yet not with sharpenesse nor seueritie but with mercifull iustice▪ and that also not as they were Priests, but Plotters, Practisers, sub­uerters, and seducers: and as they were Priests, you sought their reformation, not their ruine. And if they, who can hardly discharge themselues from beeing Priests of Baal, haue had but iustice, and that also tempered with mercy, it shewes how good regard you haue, and howe much you e­steeme all good and faithfull Ministers, which are God Interpreters. In a word, if all our Ministers were such as this Treatise describeth, or came but as neere it as the Author hereof did, and if all our great ones did vse and esteeme good ministers as you do, we should then soone pull the Ministe­rie frō vnder that foote of contempt, with [Page] which this prophane age doth daily tread vpon it. The Church of Rome, who are farre wiser in their kinde then the children of light, haue taken other & strange courses to magnifie the Cleargie. They teach, that the state Ecclesiasticall, is so far more excel­lent then the Ciuile, as the Sunne is then the Moone, & that not in spirituall onely, (for that we deny not) but in temporall power, pompe, and estate: and that therefore the Chiefe of their Clergie, is as farre aboue the mightiest Emperour, as the Sunne is aboue the Moone; and as the Moone borroweth her light from the Sunne, so doth the Empe­rour is state and power from the Pope.

They teach, that the Cleargie is a state so distinct, & so absolute of it selfe, as it hath not to do with the Ciuile stat [...], yea they ex­empt their Cleargie, from beeing any way subiect to the temporall Magistrate. And though their crimes, be neuer so many or monstrous, yet the Prince, or ciuill au­thoritie, hath nothing to do to take notice thereof, much lesse to punish them: and herevpon great volumes are written, and many Acts and decrees are made in their Cannon Lawe, De exemptione Clericorum. They extoll their Cleargy aboue the Tem­poraltie, [Page] allowing the Priests both Bread and Wine in the Sacrament, but leauing the Laitie bread alone. They make them in their masse, mediators betwixt Christ & God the Father, & Creators of their Cre­ator and Redeemer, when and as often as themselues list. And finally, they send for the most part, all their Clergie immediatly to heauen without let, wheras all the Tem­poraltie (except Martyrs) must passe by Purgatorie. Here are great buildings, but on a sandy foundation, goodly Castles, but built in the ayre; if these deuises were of God, they would certainly stand, but their long tottering threatens a suddaine fall.

Contrariwise, our Church, or rather the corruption of our Church, by auoyding this Scilla, haue falne into Charibdis, by auoy­ding one extremitie, haue falne into the other, by taking too much dignitie and au­thority frō our Ministerie, & by laying too much pouerty, contempt, & basenesse vp­pon it. It were a worke worth the labour of the wisest heads, to put downe the true meane betwixt both extreames, & worth the labour of our Noble King, to take or­der that that meane be kept, without ri­sing to the right hand, or falling to the left. [Page] This short Treatse may hap to giue some light & directions therein, or at least may encourage & stir vp their hearts in whose hands it is to doe it: Vnder your woorthy names would I haue it see the world, not so much for that I am bound to you both in many priuate and particular respects, (though that be much) as for that know you both to be o [...] so right and reformed a iudgement in this case, as you would haue none Ministers but of sufficient gifts, and vnblameable liues, nor those Ministers put to their Pensions, or vncertaine sala­iles, but to haue certaine & sufficient main­tenance proportionable to their charge, and beseeming the honour of a Christian Church: God continue you still in that minde, and make many more of the same with you, so should we haue as florishing a Church as any Christendome hath seene. Goe forward in that, and other your religious resolutions, it is the true way to honour, both heere and in a better world: stand firmly for the truth, and boldly a­gainst the Popish enemies thereof, as hi­therto you haue done: Religion had ne­uer more cause to thanke you, and all that doe so, then now it hath, for her enemies [Page] were neuer so insolent since they were our enemies: but if you and others holde on, as in your seuerall places you haue wel be­gun, and others take the like course, there is hope their insolencies will bee easily (if timely) repressed, and themselues neerest the fall, when they imagine they are in the full. The Lorde blesse and assist you in your painfull places, and make you on earth Instruments of his glorie, to the good of his Church, so shall you bee ves­sels of glory in the kingdome of Heauen: And thus commending this little treatise to your reading, and my selfe to your fa­uour, I take leaue, and wil euer rest, 1605.

Your Worships in the Lord, VV. Crashawe.

A Treatise of the duties and dignitie of the Ministerie.

Iob. 33. 23. 24.

If there bee with him a Messenger: An Interpreter, one of a thousand to declare vnto man his righteousnesse:

Then will be haue mercie on him, and will say, deliuer him that he goe not downe into the pit, for I haue receiued a reconciliation.

IN this Chapter and the former, Elihu a The Co [...] ­rence of these words with the rest. holy, learned, noble, & wise young man, had conference with Iob in matters of high and excellent Diuinitie: the points of his conference are these: From the first verse of this chap. to the 7. verse, is a Prae­face to his speach. From thence to the 13. he repeateth certaine propositions of Iob, and reproueth them: frō thence to these wordes, hee instructeth Iob in certaine points touching Gods dealing with sin­ners: [Page 2] and those are two.

1 How God preserueth a sinner from The parts of this Chapt. falling.

2 How God restoreth a sinner being falne.

1 The meanes whereby God preserueth a sinner, are set downe to bee two princi­pall.

1 By Admonitions in dreames and visi­ons.

2 By scourges and chastisments, when the first will not preuaile. And these are layde downe from the thirteene verse vn­to these words.

2 Then followeth the 2. point, namely the restoring of a sinner: when both the meanes formerly spoken of, haue not pre­uailed with him, but that through his cor­ruption he is fallen: and concerning this point, he handleth these particulers.

1 The remedie and meanes of his resto­ring.

2 The effect that followeth thereupon. 1 The remedie is layde downe in these wordes now red vnto vs, then followeth the effect, which is, that when a sinner is [Page 3] restored by repentance, then the graces of God are plentifully powred vpon him both for soule & body: from these words to the end of the Chapter.

The intent then of this Scripture, is, The some and scope of this text is a descrip­tion of the instrument by whom God raiseth a sinner into the state of grace and saluation. that God vseth meanes in his mercie to preserue sinners from falling into sinne, but if they doe, then hee in much greater mercie afordeth them meanes and helpes to rise againe. And this is the summe and substance of the words. Now, that means and remedie is the matter I purpose to speake of, out of these wordes: The meanes then to restore a sinner after a fall, is to raise him by repentance to a better Namely a Minister of his word, and he is described. estate then hee was in before, and that is inclusiuely, and by implication taught in this Text: But the instrument by whom that great worke is to be wrought, is here in plaine termes layd downe to bee a Mi­nister of God, lawfully called and sent by God, & appointed by his Church to that great dutie. So that these wordes con­taine a worthy description of a true Mini­ster, and he is here described.

[Page 4] 1 By his titles, 1. By his titles. which are two,

  • An Angell.
  • An Interpreter.

2 By his rarnesse, One of a thousand.

3 By his office: which is, to declare vnto man his righteousnes.

4 By the blessing that God giueth vp­on the labours of this true Minister: which is, then God will haue mercie vpon the sinner.

5 By his Commission and authoritie in the last wordes: God will say, Deliuer him that he goe not downe into the pit, for I haue receiued a reconciliation.

Let vs speake of them in order as they lie in the text, and first of his titles.

1 The first title of a Minister of God is, 1. Title an Angel. he is called a Messenger, or an Angel: and not here alone, but elswhere in the Scrip­ture, Malachy 2. 7. He is the Messenger of the Lord of hostes. And in the Reuelation, Reuel. 2. and 3. Chapters. the Ministers of the 7. Churches are cal­led the Angels of those Churches. So that it is apparant, a true Minister is an Angel Hee is Gods Angel & the Churches. of God in one place, and in the other place, the Angel of the Church. Hee is an Angell or Messenger sent from God to his Church. Vse 1. for Ministers.

This consideration affords matter of [Page 5] much vse. And first for Ministers them­selues.

The most of vs in this place This ser­mon was in the vniver­sitie church, to the body of the vni­uersitie. are ey­ther Prophets, or sonnes of the Prophets.

If thou be a Prophet, thou art Gods An­gel. If a sonne of the prophets thou inten­dest to bee, then marke thy dutie, pro­phets and Ministers are Angels in the ve­ry institution of their calling. Therefore 1. Vse for Ministers. Go they must preach gods word, as Gods word. thou must preach Gods word as GODS word, and deliuer it as thou receiuest it: for Angels, Embassadors, and Messen­gers, carry not their owne message, but the message of their Lords and Maisters who sent them, and Ministers carry the message of the Lord of Hostes, therefore they are bound to deliuer it as the Lords, and not their owne.

In the first Epistle of Peter, 4. 11. wee are bid, If any man speake, let him speake, not onely the word of God, but as the word of God Gods word must bee spoken, and as Gods word: then shew thy faithfulnesse For they ca­rie not the it owne mes­sage but gods. to the Lord, in discharging thy hands sin­cerely of that message, which he hath ho­noured thee to carry, Gods word is pure, [Page 6] thercfore purely to be thought vpon, and to be deliuered. Then let all that are Gods Angels, and would be honoured as his An­gels and Embassadors, thinke it no lesse reason to doe the dutie of Gods Angels, least (as many men mar a good tale in the telling, so) they take away the power and maiestie of Gods word, in the manner of deliuering it.

The second vse concernes the ministers 2. Vse for minister. They must dreach Gods word in the euidence, & demonstra­tion of gods spirit. also: are they Gods Angels? therefore they must preach Gods word in the euidence & demonstration of the spirit of God: for he that is Gods Angell, the spirit of that God must speake in him: Now to speake in the demonstration of Gods spirit, is to speake in such a plaines, and yet such a powerfulnes, as that the capacities of the simplest, may perceiue, not man, but God teaching them in that plainesse: and the conscience of the mightiest may feele, not man, but God re­proue them in that powerfulnesse: That this is so, appeares by Saint Paul. If a man pro­phecie aright. (saith the holy Ghost) the vn­learned 1. Cor. 14. 24. 25. or vnbeleeuing man comes in, hee thinkes his secret faults are disclosed and laid [Page 7] open, he thinkes all men see his nakednesse, and doe reproue him for it, he therefore falls down and saith surely God speakes in this man.

In which words, obserue an admirable This is done plainesse, and an admirable powerfulnesse (which a man would thinke coulde not so First by tea­ching plain­ly. well stand together.) First plainnesse, for whereas the vnlearned man perceiueth his faults discouerrd, it followeth necessarily he must needes vnderstand, and if an vn­learned man vnderstand it, then conse­quently it must needes be plaine: Second­ly powerfulnesse, in that his conscience is so conuinced, his secret faults so disclosed, Secondly. powerfully in that plain­nesse. and his very heart so ript vp: that he saith, certainly God speakes in this man. This is the euidence and demonstration of Gods spi­rit: It is thought good commendation be­fore the world, when men say of a Prea­cher, surely this man hath showne himselfe a proper scholler, of good learning, great reading, strong memory, and good deliue­ry, Ministers must mag­nify Gods spirit, & not themselues in prea­ching. and so it is, and such commendation (if iust) is not to be contemned: but that, that commends a man to the Lord his God, and to his owne conscience, is when he preach­eth [Page 8] so plainely to the capacitie, and so powerfully to the conscience of a wicked man, as that he thinkes doubtlesse God is within him. Art thou therefore an Angell of God, then magnifie the spirite of God, and not thy selfe in thy preaching of his word.

The next vse is for the hearers, and they are here taught, that if their Ministers bee The 2. vse for hearers. Angels sent them from God, then are they to heare them, gladly, willingly, reuerent­ly, They are to receiue thē and their doctrine willingly and reue­renly. and obediently: gladly and willingly, because they are Ambassadors, reuerently and obediently, because they are sent from the high God the King of Kings, and doe deliuer his embaslage. God saith, the people must seeke the Lawe at his mouth: Malach. 2. 7. and good reason, for if the lawe be the re­uealed will of God, and the Minister the Angell of God, then where should they seeke the will of God, but at the mouth of his Angell? The reason therefore fol­loweth well in that place: they should seeke the Lawe at his mouth, for hee is the messenger of the lord of hosts: and this must all Christians doe, not onely if their Doc­trine be pleasing vnto them, but though [Page 9] it crosse their corruptions, and bee quite contrary to their dispositions, yea though For it is Gods mes­sage, though they be men that bring it. it bee neuer so vnsauory and harde vnto nature, yet in as much as it is a message from thy God and King, and the teacher the Angellor messenger of that God: there­fore both hee and it must be receiued with all reuerence, and with the very obedience of the heart and soule. And this is the cause why a conuenient reuerence and ho­nour is to be giuen of all good Christians, euen to the persons of Gods Ministers (es­pecially when they adorne their high cal­ling with a holy life:) euen because they are Angels of God. Saint Paule teacheth, that women ought to be modestly altired in the con­gregation 1 Corinth. 11. 11. because of the Angels: it is not one­ly, because the holy Angels are present, and alwaies beholders of our seruice of God, but euen because the Ministers, which are Angels and messengers sent from God, are there, delinering their message and Embas­sage receiued from God: And thus we haue the first title giuen to the Minister: he is an Angell.

An Interpreter.

[Page 10] Secondly hee is an Interpreter, that is, 2 Title, an Interpreter, and that two wa [...]es. one that is able to deliuer aright the recon­ciliation, made betwixt God and man: I say not, the author of that reconciliation, for that is the godhead it selfe: nor the worker of this reconciliation, for that is the second person, Christ Iesus: nor the assurer or ra­tifier of it, for that is the holy Ghost: nor the instrument of it, for that is the glad ti­dings of the gospell: but I say he is the in­terpreter of it, that is, first one that can o­pen and explane the couenant of grace, and rightly lay downe the meanes how 1 Gods inter­preter to his Church. this reconciliation is wrought: Secondly, one that can rightly and iustly apply those meanes, for the working of it out. Third­ly, one that hath authoritie to publish and declare it when it is wrought: and by these three actions hee is Gods Interpreter to the people. 2 Mans in­terpreter to God.

Then hee is also the peoples interpre­ter to God, by being able to speake to God for them, to lay open their wants and nakednesses, to confesse their sinnes, to craue pardon and forgiuenesse, to giue thankes in their names for mercies recei­ued, [Page 11] and in a word to offer vp all their spi­rituall sacrifices vnto God for them: and so euery true Minister is a double interpre­ter, Gods to the people, and the peoples to God. In which respects, hee is proper­ly called, Gods mouth to the people, by preaching to them from God, and the peoples mouth to God, by praying for them to God: and this title sheweth how great & glorious a calling this ministery is if it be rightly conceiued. Now then for the vse of it.

First, if euery true Minister must bee 1 Vse. Ministers must haue the tongue of the lear­ned. Gods Interpreter to the people, and the peoples to God, then hence wee learne that euery one, who either is or intends to be a Minister, must haue that tongue of the learned, whereof is spoken in Esay 50. 4. wher the prophet saith (first in the name of Christ, as he that is the great Prophet and teacher of his Church; and secondarily in the name of himselfe, and all true Pro­phets while the worlde endureth.) The Lorde God hath giuen me a tongue of the lear­ned, that I should knowe to speake a word in season to him that is wearie: where note the [Page 12] wearie soules, or troubled conscience, must haue a word in season spoken to him for his comfort, and that cannot bee spoken without the tongue of the learned, and lastly that tongue of the learned must bee giuen First he must be furnished with human learning. 2 with diui­nity. of God. Now to haue this tongue of the learned, which Esay speakes of, what is it but to be this Interpreter, which the holy Ghost heere saith a Minister must bee: But to bee able to speake with this tongue is, first to bee furnished with humane learning. Secondly, with Diuine knowledge, as farre as it may by outward meanes bee taught from man to man: but besides these, hee that will speake this tongue aright, must be inwardly learned, and taught by the spirit [...]. He must be inwardly taught by Gods spirit. of God: the two first he must learne from men, but the third from God: a true Mi­nister must be inwardly taught by the spi­ritual school-maister the holy Ghost. Saint Iohn in the Reuelatiō must take the book, Reuel. 10. 8. that is the Scripture, and eate it, and when hee hath eaten it: then (saith the Angell) he must goe preach to Nations, tongues, people, and to Kings: which was done, not that Saint Iohn had not eaten that booke, in [Page 13] the comming downe of the holy Ghost, the Acts. 2. very ende of whose comming was to teach them spiritually: but that in him Christ might teach his Church for euer, that no Minister is fit to preach, to nations and to Kings, vntill they haue eaten the booke of This is to eat the boo of God. God: that is, till after and besides all the learning that man can teach them, they be also taught by the spirit of God him­selfe, and this teaching is it that makes a man a true interpreter, and without this he cannot be, for how can a man bee Gods interpreter to his people, vnlesse he knowe the mind of God himselfe, and how can he knowe the minde of God, but by the tea­ching of the spirit of God. For as no man knoweth the thought of a man, but the spi­rit 1. Corinth. of man that is in him. So the things of God knoweth no mā, but the spirit of god. Indeed we may be mans interpreter by hu­mane teaching, and may interpret the Scriptures truly and soundly as a hu­mane booke or storie, for the increase of knowledge, but the diuine & spiritual inter­preter, which shal pearce the hart, and asto­nish the soule of man, must bee taught by the inward teaching of the holy Ghost.

[Page 14] Let no man thinke I heere giue the least allowance to Anabaptisticall fancies, This is no approbation to Anabap­tists who de­pend onely on reuelati­ons, & neg­lect all meanes. and reuelations, which are nothing, but eyther dreames of their owne, or illusions of the Diuell, for they contemne both hu­mane learning, and the study of the scrip­ture, and trust wholy to reuelations of the spirit; but Gods Spirit worketh not but vpon the foundation of the worde: onely I teach this, that a Minister must bee a di­uine Interpreter, an Interpreter of Gods meaning. And therfore he must not onely reade the books, but eate it, that is, not one­ly haue the knowledge of Diuine things flowing in his braine, but ingrauen in his heart, and printed in his soule by the spiri­tuall finger of God: and therefore for this end, after all his owne study, meditation, conference, Commentaries, and after all humane helps, hee must pray with Dauid, Psal. 119. 18. Open thou mine eyes, that I may see the won­ders of thy lawe. The discerning of those wonders requires a spirituall illumination, and the opening of them requires the tongue of the learned. Therefore after all the studie which flesh and blood, and hu­mane [Page 15] reason can yeelde, pray with the Prophet, Lord giue me the tongue of the lear­ned, that I may be a right interpreter of thy holy will.

Furthermore, inasmuch as ministers are 2 Vse. For ministers. Esay. 13. Interpreters, they must labour for sancti­tie, and holinesse of life. In Esay, the king of Assiria is saide to bee sanctified or set a part They must be holy and sanctified men: and so be first of all interpreters to them­selues. to destroy Gods enemies. If there be a cer­taine kind of sanctification, necessary for the worke of destruction, then how much more is true sanctification necessarie for this great and glorious worke of the edification of Gods Church? A Minister is to declare the re­conciliation betwixt God and man, and is hee himselfe not reconciled? Dare he pre­sent another man to Gods mercy for par­don, and neuer yet presented himselfe? Can hee commend the state of Grace to another, and neuer felt the sweetenesse thereof in his owne soule? Dare hee come to preach sanctification with polluted lips, and out of an vnsanctified heart? Moses might not stand vpon the Mount in Gods pre­sence, till hee had put off his shooes from off his feet. Exod. 3. and dare any man presume [Page 16] to come into this most high and holy pre­sence of the Lord, vntill he haue mortified his corruptions, and cast off the vnrulines of his affections?

In Exodus, the priests are bid to sancti­fie Exod. 19. 20. Leuit. 10. 3. the people, and in Leuiticus it is saide, that God will be sanctified in all that come neere him, but who come so neere vnto God as the Ministers do? So that it is ap­parant, Ministers doe sanctifie the people, and in some construction, God himselfe: Nowe, shall they one way bee sanctifiers of the people, another way of God himselfe, and For else they will hardly do good to others. no way of themselues? Surely if it bee so, they are but lame Interpreters. And this is the reason doubtlesse, why vnsanctified Ministers, and such as are of a loose con­uersation, bestow such fruitlesse labours in the Church: many want no learning, no ability to interpret, & yet how fewe soules doe they bring to God? Some it may bee are conuerted by their Ministerie, that God may shewe, the efficacie is not in the person of man, but in the ordinance of God, but fewe doubtlesse (for ought that we can see:) to teach vs, how God hateth [Page 17] him which will take in hand to reconcile others to God, himselfe being vnreconci­led. Seing-then Ministers are Gods Inter­preters to the people, to declare & publish their reconciliation with God, and that they cannot be reconciled, vnlesse they be sanc­tified, and can so hardly bee sanctified by the ministerie of an vnsanctified man: let therefore all true Ministers of God: first be Gods Interpreters to their owne consci­ences, and their owne soules Interpreters to God, then shall they know more perfect­ly how to discharge the office of true In­terpreters betwixt God and his people.

And thus we haue the true titles of a true Minister.

Now it followeth in the Text.

One of a thousand.

Here is the second part of this descripti­on, 2. Part of the description is the rare­nes of a good Mini­ster. He is one of a thousand. which is by the rarenesse, or scarcenesse of good Ministers: which is layd downe in a very strange phrase, namely, that a true Minister one that is a right Angel, and a true Interpreter, is no common or ordina­rie man, but thin sowne, one of many, Nay, one of a thousand.

[Page 18] The meaning hereof is to be conceiued The mea­ning. either properly, or figuratiuely: in the fi­guratiue sence, it is spoken in relation to ministers themselues: in the proper sense, it hath a comparison with all men: the fi­guratiue and hyperbolicall sense is, that of all the Ministers in the worlde, not one of many is a right Angel, and a true Inter­preter: the plaine & proper sense is, that a­mongst the men of this worlde, there is not one of a thousand which proues a true Minister. For this point let vs examine three points: the truth of it, the reasons of it, and the vse of it.

The truth hereof is manifest, by the ex­perience 1. The truth hereof. of all ages, wherein it is strange to obserue, how fewe men of any sort, espe­cially of the better sort, affect the calling of a Minister: and which is more strange, howe fewe of those that are Ministers in name and title, doe deserue these honou­rable names of an Angel, and an Interpre­ter, and the truth is too manifest in com­mon practise, to insist much vpon it: ra­ther therefore let vs see the reasons of it, and they be these principally.

[Page 19] First, the Contempt that lyeth on that 2. The rea­sons hereof. calling, it being alwayes hated, by wicked and prophane men, because it discouers their filthines, and vnmaskes their hypo­crisie: 1. Reason the con­tempt of it: it being al­wayes hated by wicked men. and their doctrine oftimes is a fret­ting corrasiue to their conscience, that they cannot welter, and wallowe so quiet­ly, and secretly in their sinnes, as otherwise they would, therefore is it that they spurne both against the calling, and the men, and watch them narrowly, and take holde of their least infirmities, thereby to disgrace them: iudging that to cast contempt on that calling, is to remoue shame from their owne shamefull courses: nor is it possible, but that they should thus hate this calling, inasmuch as they hate so deadly both that lawe and Embassage which they bring, and that GOD, whose Embassadors they are.

This hatred and disgrace in the wicked world, was that that caused Ieremie to cry, woe is me, & made him in the seeming of his natural reason, curse ye time yt euer he was Ieremie, 15. 10. a prophet, for saith he, I am a man of cōtention, [Page 20] euery man is at strife and at enmitie with me.

The next reason is The difficultie of dis­charging 2. Reason, the defficul­tie of dis­charging the duties. the duties of his calling: to stand in Gods presence, to enter into the holy of holiest, to goe betwixt God & his people, to be Gods mouth to the people, and the peoples to God: to be the Interpreter of the eternall lawe of the olde Testament, and the euerlasting Gospell of the New: to stand in the roume, and to beare the of­fice of Christ himselfe, to take the care and charge of soules, these considerations are so many amazements to the consciences of such men, who doe with reuerence ap­proch, & not with rashnes, rush vnto this sacred seate: this made Saint Paul cry out, who is sufficient for these things. And if Paul 2. Corinth. 2. 16. said, Who is? no marnell though many a man say, I am not sufficient, and doe there­fore draw their neckes from this yoke, and their hands from this plough, vntill God himselfe or his Church doe presse them to it.

The last reason is more peculiar to this 3. Reason▪ want of mainte­nance. age of the newe Testament, namely, want [Page 21] of maintenance and preferment, for them that labour in this calling: men are flesh and blood, and in that respect must be allured, and wonne to embrace this vocation, by some arguments, which may perswade flesh and blood: the world hath in all a­ges beene negligent herein, and therefore God in his law tooke such strict orders, for Deut. 10. 9. & 28. 2. Num. 18. 26. the maintenance of the Leuites: but especial­ly, now vnder the Gospel, this calling is vnprouided for, when it deserues best of all to be rewarded: certainly it were a worthy Christian pollicie, to propound good pre­ferments to this calling, that thereby men of the worthiest giftes might be won vnto it, and the want thereof, is cause why so many young men of speciall partes, and greatest hope, turne to other vocations, and especially to the Lawe, wherein at this day the greatest partes of the finest wits of our This makes many of our best wits turne from Diuinitie to Law. kingdome, are imployed, & why? But be­cause they haue al the meanes to rise, wher­as the Ministerie, for the most part yeel­deth nothing, but a plaine way to beggery: this is a great blemish in our Church, and surely I wish the Papists, those children of [Page 22] this world, were not wiser in their kinde, (in this point) then the Church of God: the re­formation hereof is a worke worth the la­bour of prince and people▪ & speciall care is to bee had in it, else it will not be refor­med, for doubtlesse had not God himselfe in the olde testament, taken such straight orders for the liuings of the Leuites, they had beene put to no lesse extremities, then is the Ministrie of this age. And this rea­son added to the other, makes them per­fect; and all put together make a reason infallible: for who will vndergo so vile con­tempt, and vndertake so great a charge for no reward: and where there is so great con­tempt, so heauie a burthen, and so meane a reward, what maruell, if a good Minister be one of a thousand?

Now let vs make vse of this doctrine: 3. The vse of it. The vse is manifold, and yeelds instructi­ons to many sorts of people: First, Rulers 1. To Rulers to maintaine Vniuersities, Colledges, and schooles of the Pro­phets. and Magistrates are heere taught, if good Ministers be so scarce, therefore to maine­taine and increase, and doe all good they can to the schooles of the Prophets, to Vni­uersities, Colledges, & Schooles of good [Page 23] learning, which are the Seminaries of the Ministerie: herein the example of Samuel, is very worthy to bee followed, in whose dayes the schooles of the Prophets flori­shed, 1. Sam. 19. 20 21, 22, 23, 24. and euen Saul himselfe, though hee did much hurt in Israel, yet when he came to the schooles of the Prophets, his hard heart relented, he could doe them no hurt, nay, he put off his robes & prophecied amongst them. So should all Christian princes and magistrates aduaunce their schooles, and see them both well maintained, and well stored, the reason is euident & forcible.

A good Minister is one of 1000. If therfore The rather, because the Pope doth so to vphold his supersti­tion. At Rome Reimes Doway. they would haue the number increased, let them maintaine the Seminaries. And againe, if Antichrist to vphold his king­dome, the Kingdome of Sathan, bee so carefull herein, to erect Colledges, and indowe them with liuing, to bee Semina­ries for his Synagogue, and vse so great meanes to sowe his tares in the hearts of young men, that so they may sowe them in the hearts of the people abroad: shall not Christian princes bee as carefull, or rather much more zealous, for the [Page 24] increasing of the number of godly Mini­sters? 1. Kin. 18. 22. shall Baal haue his 4. hundred prophets, and God haue his Elias alone? great shame must it bee to Ahab, or to any king, whose kingdome is in that estate.

The Iesuites diligence is such in teach­ing, And the Ie­suites to cō ­tinue their late foun­ded Hierar­chie. and the readinesse of some of their no­uices such in learning, (the diuell himselfe doubtlesse, putting to his helpe withall) that in three yeares (as some of them say of themselues) they proceede in humane learning, and in the fourth, in Diuinitie: which if it be so, then it may bee a good Lesson, for these our schooles of learning, and an inducement to moue all that haue the gouernment thereof, to labour to ad­uance learning, by all good meanes, and to giue it more speedie passage: And it may shame some that spend so many yeares in the Vniuersitie, and yet alas for all that proue not one of a 1000. In these our schooles are by Gods mercy, many young trees planted by the riuer side of this goodly Orchard, which by good or­dring and dressing, may prooue goodly trees in the temple of God, and strong pil­strong [Page 25] pillers in the Church: but they are like tender plants, and must be cherished. Princes and great men, by allowing main­tenance, and the Gouernours by establishing good orders, and looking carefully to their execution, must see that these plants haue sufficient moisture to grow speedily to per­fect ripenesse, and that then they be trans­planted in due time, into the Church and common wealth: these be the trees spo­kē of in Ezechiel, which growe by the sides of the riuer, which floweth out of the sanctuarie: Ezchiel, 47. 1, &c. Waters out of the Sanctuary must norish them, and so they growe vnto their per­fection: but take away these waters: take away the liberalitie of princes and good discipline from the Vniuersities, and these trees must needes decay and wither: which if they do, then the smal number of good Ministers will be fewer & fewer, & of one of a 1000. ther wil not be one of 2000

In the next place, Ministers them­selues are here taught: First if good Mi­nisters 2. Vse for Ministers. bee so scarce, then let euery man feare to make them fewer then they bee: euery man therefore for himselfe, labour [Page 26] first for abilitie, then for conscience to dis­charge 1. Let euery man feare to make them fewer. his dutie: namely, to bee an An­gel, to deliuer faithfully Gods Embassage, and a true Interpreter betwixt God and his people: thus if thou doest, then how­soeuer the number of good Ministers is small, yet it shall bee nothing smaller for thee.

2 If they bee so fewe, labour to in­crease them, for the more they are, the lesse burden lyeth vpon each particular 2. Labour to encrease them, by winning o­thers to it. man, therefore let euery Minister by his teaching, and by his conuersation labour, so to honour his calling, that hee may thereby allure and drawe others to a loue and liking thereof.

3 Are good Ministers so thinne sowne? are there so few of them? then let all good and godly Ministers giue the right hand of fellowship one to another, and ioyne toge­ther Galath. 2. 9. in loue, & by that meanes arme thē ­selues 3. Let them one loue an other and ioyne toge­ther. against the scorne and contempt of the world: we see they that are of a kinred, or a brotherhood, or any kind of societie, the fewer they are, the more closelie doe [Page 27] they combine, the more firmely doe they holde together against all forraine force: so ought Gods Ministers to doe, because their number is so small: if they were ma­ny, lesse danger in their disvnion. But see­ing they are so fewe, the more it concer­neth them to cut off contentions, and all occasions of debate, and to ioyne hand in hand against these common aduersaries.

In the third place, young Students are 3. Vse for students. 1. To conse­crate them­selues and their Studies to that cal­ling. heere taught, seeing a true Minister is but one of a thousand, that therfore they bend their studies, and their thoughts to the Ministerie, for they well know it is an old prouerbe, the best things are hard to come by: & certainly there are so few good Mi­nisters, because the holy Ministerie in it selfe is so high & excellent a calling: & as it is a shame to the men that there are so few good Ministers, so it is a commendation to the calling: whose honour & excellency is such, that as wee see heere scarce one of a thousand attaines vnto it, therefore men of the most excellent giftes, are here inuited to dedicate themselues vnto the most ex­cellent vocation, yea, very reason it selfe would vrge a man to be one of a thousand.


[Page 28] 2 And further, as they are to in­tend To furnish themselues with the true orna­ments of a Minister. this calling as the most rare and ex­cellent: so this must teach them like wise, to hasten to furnish themselues with all good helpes and meanes, that they may become true Ministers and able Interpre­ters, and not too long to sticke in those studies, which keep a man from the prac­tise of this high function: for it is not to liue in the Ʋniuersitie, or in the Colledge, and to studie, though a man neuer so fast deuoure vp learning, but to be a good Mi­nister, is that that makes a man one of a thousand.

In the last place, Hearers are heere taught their dutie, first, to respect with re­uerence 4 Vse for Hearers. 1. To reue­rence the person and receiue the doctrine. the person, and to receiue with re­uerence the Message of euery true Messen­ger, seeing it is so rare a thing to finde a true Minister for as nothing is more vile or base then an euil & lewd Minister, (whom Christ compares to salt which hath lost his Math 5. 13. sauour, which is good for nothing, but to bee cast out & troden downe of men:) so is there none worthy of more loue and reuerence, then a holy Minister: for as Esay saith, their [Page 29] very feete are beautifull which bring glad ty­dings; and we should kisse their feete which bring newes of peace: therefore all good Christians are to receiue and vse a good Minister, as S. Paul saith the Galathians Gala. 4. 16. did him, euen as an Angel of God Hast thou then a godly pastor, run to him for conference, for comfort, for counsell, vse his company, frequent his fermons, ac­count him worthy of double honour, thinke it no small or ordinary blessing, for thou hast one of a thousand, and blesse God for bestowing his mercy on thee, which hee had denyed to so many others: for some haue no Minister: some haue a Minister, but yet [...], he is not one of a thousand.

And further: all men that are Fathers, 2. Fathers to dedicate their sonnes to the mini­sterie. may heere learne to consecrate their chil­dren to God in the seruice of the Mini­sterie, considering that it is so rare and ex­cellent a thing to be a good Minister: nay that man should thinke himselfe happie, and honoured of God, who may be father to such a sonne, as shal proue one of a thou­sand.

In a word to conclude this point, all men [Page 30] must heere learne, seeing good Mini­sters 5 Vse for al men. Pray that God would encrease the number. are so scarce, to pray the Lorde of the haruest, to thrust out more labourers into his haruest: and for those that are called al­ready, that God would make them faith­full in that high function. And as Elisha craueth of Elias, that the good spirit may 2. Reg. 2, 9. be doubled, and trebled vpon them, so that the number may be encreased. And thus wee haue the truth, the reason, and the vse of this, that a good Minister is one of a thousand.

It followeth. To declare vnto man his righteousnesse.

Heere is the third part of the descripti­on 3. Part of the description by his office that is to de­clare vnto man his righteous­nesse. of a Minister, that is, by his office, to declare vnto man his righteousnesse: that is, when a poore sinner, by his sinnes (the foulnes whereof he seeth, and the burden whereof he feeleth) is brought downe, as it were to the very gates of hell, when this sinner by the preaching of the Lawe, is brought to a true sight of this miserie: and again by preaching the gospel, is brought to lay hold on Iesus Christ, then it is the pro­per office of a Minister to declare vnto that The mea­ning[Page 31] man his righteousnes. Namely, that though in himselfe he be as ill, and as foule as sinne can make him, & as the law can discouer him to be: yet in Christ he is righteous, & iust, and by Christ so iustified, as he is no more a sinner in the presence and account of God, this is the righteousnes of a Chri­stian man, this is the iustification of a sin­ner. And to declare this righteousnes to him that repents and belieues, is the proper dutie of a true Minister.

In the Actes, Paule saith of himselfe, that he witnessed to the Iewes, & to the Gen­tiles, Act. 20. 21. the repentance towards God, and faith towards our Lord Iesus Christ. In which words is layde downe the complete dutie of a Minister (as he is a publique Angell or Interpreter,) first, to preach repentance, which a man must performe to GOD, whom by his sins hee hath grieuously of­fended; secondly, to preach faith in Christ, and free forgiuenes, and perfect saluation through that faith in Christ, to all that shal truly belieue in him. And after both these, It com [...]re­hendeth these points. followeth that which is heere spoken of, which comprehendeth both the former, [Page 32] namely, to declare vnto man his righteeus­nesse. 1. He must declare wher true righteousnesse is. So that in these words, are inclusi [...]e­ly layd downe, these points of a Ministers calling: first, a true Minister may & must declare vnto a sinfull man where righteous­nesse is to be found, namely, in Iesus Christ: 1. John 2. the righteous. Secondly, how that righte­ousnes 2. How it may be ob­tained. may bee obtained, namely, by d [...] ­ing two duties: First, by denying & disclai­ming 3. He must declare it to him, that is 1. Shew that it is ready for him if he beleeue and repent. his owne righteousnesse, and that is done by repentance; secondry, by clay­ming & cleaning to Christe righteousnes, and that is done by faith. Thirdly, a true Minister may and must declare this righ­teousnes to him, that is first publish and pro­claime, that it is ready to his bestowed on euery sinner, which will thus appre­hend it, and that it is able to iustifie and saue him:) secondly, beside a bare publi­cation of this instification, he must (as Paul 2. He must testifie and assure him of it. did) witnes and testifie it to the conscience of the sinner, that it is as certainely true [...] God is true. For as a witnesse in: doubtfull cases is called, that by his testimone [...] may cleere the truth, so when the consci­ences of poore sinners are [...] and [Page 33] doubtfull what to belieue, when they doubt of this righteousnesse, then is a true minister as a faithfull witnesse of God to a­uerre and testifie this truth, from his owne conscience, knowledge and feeling of the infallible certaintie of Gods promises, vn­to the doubtfull and distres [...]ed conscience of the sinner.

Thirdly, besides declaration and testifica­ti [...]n been to maintaine this truth, and this 3 He must maintaine it. & auerre it against all doubts and temptations. righteousnesse (if the sinners conscience be yet not quiet) against all gain sayers, a­gainst the power of darknesse, and all the gates of helld that this is true and perfect righteousness [...] to him that apprehends it as afore is [...] downe [...] this is so infal­lible to euery soule that repents and be­leeueth, that the minister, may assure it to the conscience of the sinner in the worde of truth, and in the name of God, and may call to [...] all Gods Saints, and all his holy Angels, and may [...] vnto him his owne [...] vpon it, that it is most true, that this is [...] perfect, and [...] sufficient righ­teousnesse.

That we see in some measure, what it is [Page 34] to declare vnto a man his righteousnes. And This dutie is ordinarily peculiar to Ministers. this is the peculiar office of a Minister of God, and this is the height and excellen­cie of his office. In the want of godly mi­nisters, I confesse that godly Christian men may one helpe another in the perfor­mance of these duties, and that with pro­fit, but it is the proper function of a godly Minister to doe it, and the promise and blessing belong properly to him: as the consciences of all penitent sinners, will testifie in this case: let Dauids serue for many, who when hee was cast downe e­uen to the mouth of hell, by that feare­full discouery of his two hideous sinnes by Nathans preaching; & when the faith of his soule beganne to wrestle against Hell, and striue against despaire, and to apprehend the mercy of God in Christ: then I say, could not the testimonie of all the men in the worlde haue giuen him that ioy, comfort and assurance, that Na­than did, when hee saide in the word of a 2. Sam. 11. Prophet, and of a true Minister, God hath taken away thy sinne, thou shalt not dye: what did Nathan here, but declare vnto man his [Page 35] righteousnesse? what did Nathan heere, but the duty of euery true minister?

If this be the office and duty of a mini­ster; 1 Vse for Ministers. and if such bee the height and excel­lency: of his office, let vs see then what vse we may make of it.

First, concerning the Ministerie: It First for the Popish mi­nistery, they doe insuffi­ciently de­clare it. first discouereth how nakedly, weakely, and insufficiently, the Popish Church doth declare vnto man his righteousnesse, who wil let a man seeke it in himselfe▪ where alas it is not: for Paule himselfe testifieth, that his desire is, that hee may bee found out of himselfe, and in Christ; and yet certainly, if Philip. 3. 8, 9. euer man had righteousnesse of his owne worth trusting to, Paule had: this is the cause why so many of that religion finde not that righteousnesse, which will pacific and satisfie their consciences; when they come to dye: and why so many of them, whē it comes to the pinch, do then go out of themselues, and with vs doe seek for this righteousnesse in Christ, where both assu­redly, and sufficiently it is to be found.

Then for our owne Ministerie, heere they are taught: first the true manner [Page 36] of teaching, and declaring righteousnesse, Secondly our owne. namely this, not to preach the lawe alone, or the Gospell alone, as some vnaduised­ly doe (but both without profite) but both the lawe and the Gospell; the lawe to breed repentance the gospell to worke f [...]th [...] but in order; first the lawe to breede re­pentance, Both the lawe and the gospell. and then the gospell to worke faith and forgiuenesse, but neuer be­fore.

Secondly, they are taught to bee holy: to bee sanctified and reconciled them­selues 2 To be ho­ly men themselues. for is it thy office to declare vnto man his righteousnesse, and not thy own to thy selfe? and how, canst thou bee a true wit­nesse to testifie betwixt God, and the soule of a sinner, when thy owne soule knoweth not, nor feeleth the truth of it? certainly such men are but lame witnesses betwixt God, and the sinners soule. Dauid saith to the sinner, I will instruct thre in the way Psal. 32. wherein thou shalt goe: but hee first of all in the same, sets downe his owne experi­ence in a large story of his owne repen­tance, and of Gods mercy on himselfe. For else they will conuert but fewe. And though God some time doe satisfie, [Page 37] and saue the poore distressed soule of a sinner, by the testimonie of such men, to teach vs, that the vertue is not in the men, but in the truth of Gods couenant: yet alas how fewe are they, to teach vs, how pleasing it is vnto him, when a Minister is a declarer of that righteousnesse to others, which hee first hath himselfe: and is a wit­nesse of that truth to others, which he first knoweth in his owne experience. 3. Vse to Ministers, not to care for the con­tempt of the world.

Thirdly, the consideration of this high excellencie of their calling, must arme all true Ministers against the scorne and contempt of the world, which by wicked men is cast like dust and mire into the face of Ministers: let this suffice them, they are the men that must declare vnto man his righteousnesse, euen he that scornes and contemnes the ministerie, hee hath no righteousnesse in him, vnlesse it bee by the meanes of a poore Minister: then doe thou thy duty, and bee that mockes thee, hath cause to honour thee. And let this encou­rage Students to consecrate themselues 2 Vse for Students. to the ministery, for what calling hath so high an office, as this, to declare vnto man [Page 38] his righteousnesse? And assuredly how euer To conse­crate them­selues to the high calling. in this wicked world, thou art little ac­counted of (for if it did not so, it were not wicked:) yet thou art honoured in the harts of all Gods children▪ and euen in the conscience of some, whose tongues doe smite thee: and the soules of thousands, when they dye shal blesse thee, who in their liues cared not for thee: and the diuell himselfe doth enuy, & the holy Angels themselues doe wonder at the excellency of thy cal­ling, in that thou hast power to declare vn­to men his righteousnesse.

In the next place, hearers may heere 3 Vse for the hearers. Seeke righ­teousnesse both in the law and the Gospell. learne; first if their righteousnesse bee thus to bee declared as afore, then if they will haue it, they must seeke it as it may bee found, namely, both in the lawe, and in the Gospell and not in the Gospell alone: and first in the lawe, then in the Gospell: for he must neuer looke to taste the sweetnes of the Gospell, which hath not first swal­lowed the bitter pilles of the law: if therefore thou wouldest be declared righteous by the Gospell, bee content first to bee pro­nounced miserable by the lawe: if thou [Page 39] wouldst be declared righteous in Christ, then bee content first to bee pronounced sin­full 2 What to esteeme of Gods mini­sters. and vnrighteous in thy selfe. Second­ly, all men may heere learne, how they are to esteeme of Gods Ministers, and what reuerence and obedience is due to their persons, and their doctrine: these are they which must declare vnto thee thy righ­teousnesse, if thou hast any: Art thou be­holden to him, who, when thou hast lost a Iewell (which was all thy wealth) can tell thee where it is, and helpe thee to it againe? or to him, who, when thy cause is in triall at the barre, will pleade it for thee? or to him, who, when thy health is lost, can tell thee how to get it againe? then beholde how thou art beholden to a godly Minister, who when Adam had lost both himselfe and thee, that Iewell of righteous­nesse, which was, and is the whole wealth of thy soule, can truly tell thee where it is, and howe it is to bee had againe: and who, when the diuell haleth thee to the barre of Gods iustice, to receiue triall for thy sinnes, can drawe thee there such a declaration, as the diuell himselfe shall not [Page 40] bee able to answere? and who, when thy soule is sicke to death, and euen to damna­tion, can heale the deadly wounds there­of. A good minister therefore is worthy (as the Apostle saith) of double honour, whose dutie wee see is to declare vnto man his righteousnesse. And to conclude this point also, the consideration of the height of this office of a minister, may encourage fathers to dedicate their sonnes to this ho­ly 4 Vse for fathers, to make their sounes Mi­nisters. calling: for the Physitians care for the body, or the Lawyers for thy cause, are both inferiour duties to this of the Mini­nister. A good Lawyer may be one of tenne: a good Physitian one of 20. a good man one of 100. but a good minister is one of 1000. A good Lawyer may declare the true state of thy cause; a good Physitian may declare the true state of thy body: No calling, no man can declare vnto thee thy righteousnesse, but a true Minister. And thus we see the office or function of a mi­nister. Now followeth the blessing.

Then will he haue mercy vpon him.

[Page 41] The fourth generall part of this de­scription, 4. Point, the blessings: then will God haue mercy on the sinner: is the blessing which God giueth to the labours and function of a true Mi­nister: then that is, when a man by the preaching of the lawe, is brought to true humiliation and repentance, and by the preaching of the Gospell, to true faith in the Messias: then will he (that is, God) haue mercy on him (that is, on the penitent and beleeuing sinner.) Behold heere the ad­mirable simpathy, and the cooperation of God, and the Ministers office. Man prea­cheth, and God blesseth: Man worketh on the heart, and God giues grace: a mi­nister declares vnto man his righteousnesse, and God saith so be it he shall be righteous: a minister pronounceth mercy to a penitent sinner, and forthwith God hath mercy on him. Heere wee see the great and glorious God & his Minister worke toge­ther. account which God makes of the worde of his ministers, by them truly taught and rightly applyed, namely, that he as it were tyeth his blessing vnto it: for ordinarily till a man knowe his righteousnesse, by the meanes of an Interpreter, God hath not mercy on him, but as soone as he doth [Page 42] knowe it, then as we see here God wil haue mercy on him and will say deliuer him, &c.

This is no small honour to ministers, and to their Ministerie, that God himselfe giues a blessing vnto it, & worketh when they work, and as it were staieth wayting, when they declare vnto a man his righte­ousnesse, and then hath he mercy on him: so powerfull and so effectuall is the worde spoken by a minister of God. This is that Math. 16. 16. which Christ auoucheth, Whatsoeuer you loose in earth, shall be loosed in heauen. Will Iohn. 20. 23. you knowe the meaning hereof? Reade Saint Iohn, whose sinnes soeuer you remit, they are remitted; whose you retaine, they are Esay. 44. 25, 26. retained: will you haue the meaning of both? read Esay, God destroyeth the tokens of Soothsayers, and makes Wisards and Astro­logers fooles, turneth worldly wisemen back­ward and makes their knowledge foolishnesse: but hee confirmeth the word of his seruants, and performeth the counsel of his messengers, Thus God bindeth and looseth with them, remitteth and retaineth with them, by confir­ming their word and performing their coun­sell: For example.

[Page 43] A true minister seeth a sinner hardned in his sins, & still rebelling against the will of God, he therfore declareth vnto him his vn­righteousnes, & his sin, & denounceth vnto him, the misery & curses of Gods iustice, as due vnto him for the same: here he binds on earth, here he retains on earth, this mans sins are likewise bound & retained in hea­uen. On the other side, hee seeth a man pe­nitēt, & belieuing, he pronounceth forgiue­nes of sins, & happines vnto him for the same: he looseth him from the band of his sins, by declaring vnto him his righteousnes, this mans sins are likewise loosed & remit­ted in heauen, & God himselfe doth pro­nounce him cleare in heauen, when the Minister doth on earth. Thus God confir­meth the word of his seruants, and perfor­meth the counsell of his messengers,

The vse of this doctrine is, first for ru­lers 1 Vse for rulers to giue due re­uerence to the mini­sters. and great men of this worlde, this may teach them to be nursing Fathers and nursing Mothers vnto the Church, whose authority they see is so great ouer them, as that their decree stands ratified in heauen: Therefore though their place bee great, Psalme. 82. and they bee Gods vppon earth, yet must [Page 44] they withall acknowledge, that in iusti­fying a sinner, in interpretation, in decla­ring vnto man his righteousnes; in binding and loosing, their power also is immediate from God, & aboue theirs, and they them­selues, as they are men, must submit them­selues to this powerfull word of the mini­sters, to be taught by it, and to be reconci­led by meanes of it, & highly must they respect it; for though a man speake it, yet is it the word of God: this is to lick the dust of Christs feete, which the Prophet spea­keth Esay. 2 Vse for Ministers. of: not as the Pope would haue it, to hold the stirrop, & leade the horse, & hold the water to the Pope, to kisse his toes, to holde their kingdomes of him, as tenants at will, or by curtesie, but reuerently to ac­knowledge the ordinance to be Gods, the function & duty to be high & excellent, to acknowledge the power of their keyes and censures (being rightly applied, their promises & their threatnings to be as frō God, & to submit to them accordingly.

Secondly, Ministers thēselues here must learne, when they take the word of recon­ciliation into their hands and mouthes, to [Page 45] call to minde whose it is, euen the Lords, and 2 Vse Gods word reue­rently. that he worketh with them, & hath the grea­test hand in the work, and that therefore they must vse it in holymaner, with much feare and reuerence: It is not their owne, they may not vse it as they list. And lastly, Hearers are here taught, first to see how mad such men be which care­lesly, and sildome heare sermons, but vpon any 3 Vse for Hearers. 1 Heare Gods word often & re­uerently. occasion flye to wisards and charmers, which are the diuels Prophets: for see the difference of these two, the wisard and charmer hath so­cietie with the diuell, the Preacher with God: the charmer hath his calling from the diuel, the Preacher is from God: the Charmers charme is the diuels watchword, (when he charmeth, the diuell doth the feate): the preachers doctrine is Gods watchword, when hee truly applyeth it, GOD himselfe ratifieth and makes it good: therefore let all men feare to haue thus to doe with the diuell, by seeking to his slaues, & let them draw neere to God, by entring into fel­lowship with his holy prophets, and godly Ministers.

And further, if when they preach, and thou 2 See the dignitie and pre [...]ogatiue of the Mini­sters calling. belieuest, then GOD hath mercy on thee, then learne what reuerence they and their word is [...] [Page 44] [...] [Page 45] [Page 46] worthy of, which is thus accompanied with Gods mercy and forgiuenes: and then learne to heare the Word with feare and trembling, for it is Gods word, and not theirs: and when a true Minister saith vnto thee, on a true ground, I denounce thee a sinfull man, and vnder the curse, or I declare thee to be righte­ous, and a child of grace, it is all one, as though God from heauen had said so vnto thee. If a­ny man aske; But is it not as good if another Obiect. But may not another Christian do it? man pronounce forgiuenesse vnto me vpon my repentance? I answere, yes vndoubtedly, if it be in extraordinarie times or places, when there are no Ministers: for otherwise, cer­tainly this blessing is principally tied vnto the And not or­dinatily. Ministers calling: for it is not said of any pri­uate mens calling any wher in the scripture, as it is heere saide of the ministers.

If an Angell, an Interpreter come to a man [...] For they haue not the same promise. and declare vnto him his righteousnesss, then (marke the conexion) then will GOD haue mercy on him, and will say, Deliuer him, &c. Whence comes this blessing? from this pro­mise of God. If therfore other callings wil chal­lenge ordinarily the same blessing, then must they haue the same prosmise. Besides, other [Page 47] Christiās being priuate men, though they 2 They haue not the same power to discerne. be sanctified, & haue a good measure of knowledge, yet haue they not the same spirit of discerning that godly Ministers haue: nor can so fully & truly iudge, when a man hath repented, when not; and there­fore cannot so truly pronounce the sentence of the law or Gospel, nor haue they abili­tie ordinarily by their good conference, and Christian counsell, to conuert a soule, but to confirme one conuerted: but that power ordinarily belongs to the publike ministery of the word, therefore it follow­eth, that ordinarily they haue not the pow­er to pronounce the sentence of binding or loosing vppon any man: I confesse, in times or places, where no minister can be In extraor­dinary times and in want of ministers they may. had, God blesseth the labours of priuate men, that haue knowledge, sometimes e­uen for the conuerting of a man to God, & for comforting him at the houre of death, and giues a vertue and power to that sen­tence which they shal pronounce one vp­on anothers repentance: but as this is ex­traordinary, and in the want of ordina­ry Ministers, so in that case a priuate man of knowledge and Godlinesse, [Page 48] is made a Minister for that time to himselfe, or to another, euen as a priuate man in ca­ses of extreame danger, whē no magistrate is present, is made a magistrate himselfe to defend his own life. So then as in want of a Magistrate, the sword of the magistra­cie is put into the hand of a priuate man: so in the want of Ministers, the keyes of the Ministerie are committed, and put into the hands of priuate men, (as in ye dayes of persecution) that then they may with com­fort admonish & aduise: and with power pronounce mercy and forgiuenesse one vnto another, vpon their true repentance. Yet alwaies remember that in so doing, a priuate man is as a minister for that time, & in that case: but ordinarily (and alwaies in setled Churches) this power pertaineth to the Ministerie, & is theirs alone by or­dination; and to them belongeth the pro­mise and the blessing, that when hee hath declared to a man his righteousnesse, then God will haue mercie on him. And thus we see also the blessing of God vpon the function of the Ministerie, & annexed therunto by the merciful dispensation of God. It fol­loweth.

[Page 49] And will say, Deliuer him that he goe not downe into the pit: for I haue receiued a re­conciliation.

The fift and last part of this description 5. Part, the Commissi­on, which is, Deliuer the penitent man from hell. is, the Commission & authoritie giuen vn­to him, which is so great, as neuer was gi­uen to any creature, and is this, when a Minister of God hath declared vnto man his righteousnesse, hath brought him to the state of grace, and God in his fauour hath had mercie on him; then God saith to the Minister, Deliuer that soule from hell, for I haue pardoned him in Christ, I am reconci­led to him.

In which words, authoritie is giuen to How a Mi­nister is a redeemer. a Minister of God to redeeme a man peni­tent, from hell & damnation: not that hee is the meanes of working out this redemp­tion, for that wholy and onely is Christ himselfe: but hee is Gods instrument and Christs instrument: First, to apply those meanes vnto him: Secondly, to pronounce his safetie and deliuerance when these means are vsed. Here is the principall ho­nour [Page 50] of all, belonging to that calling: and More then Angels. it is the greatest that euer was vouchsafed to any creature, Man or Angel: for it is a plaine Commission, to go and deliuer such a man from the power of hell, & to redeeme him into the state of Gods children, and to make him heire of heauen: Angels ne­uer had this Commission, they are Mes­sengers set out for the good of those whom Heb. 1. vlt. Ministers haue redeemed, and they haue brought many comfortable messages vn­to them: but it was neuer said to any An­gel, Deliuer that man that he goe not downe into the pit: as it heere is saide vnto a Mini­ster, More then any other calling of men. nor any man but Ministers haue this Commission. To some callings GOD saith, worke thou for man, build him houses, prouide him sustenance; to the Phisition, heale that man: to the Lawyer, doe that man iustice: to the souldier, fight for him: to the Magistrate, defend him: to the King, gouerne him, & see that euery one doe his dutie: to none but to the Mi­nister doth he say, Deliuer him that he goe not downe into the pit.

If this be so then for the vse, first Mi­nisters [Page 51] must learne heere, that if they will Vse 1. for Ministers. haue the honour of Redeemers, then must they doe the dutie of Redeemers, they Ergo, They must pray and preach, dili­gently. must pray earnestly for the people, for that is one meanes whereby they redeeme men.

They must say with Samuel, God for­bid that 1. Sam. 12. I should cease to pray for you: They must mourne for the impenitent, when they will not turne to God. So did Da­uid, Psalm. 119. his eyes gushed out with riuers of waters, because men kept not Gods law. And Iere­mie, who wished a fountaine of water in his eyes, that he might weepe for the sinnes of the people. They must priuarly conferre visite, admonish, and rebuke, and principally they must preach, and that in such good man­ner, and in so diligent measure, as that they may redeeme and winne soules, and the end that they must ayme at, must bee to winne soules. Some preach for feare of For so do­ing they are redeemers▪ the law, to auoyd censure or punishment: some for fashion sake, that they may bee like to others: some for ostentation sake, to win credite and praise: some for ambition, to rise in the world: all these forget their [Page 52] Commission, which is, Deliuer a man Idle Minis­ters are no redeemers. from hell.

This should bee the end of their prea­ching, to deliuer a soule from hell: & what should Commissioners doe, but execute their Commission? High Commissioners are worthy to be low Commissioners, or rather, no Commissioners, if they wil not put it in execution. It is therefore lamen­table to see, that some by not preaching; some by vaine preaching, shew that they intend any thing rather then the winning of soules to God.

Let then all good Ministers so preach, as they may say with Esay, Behold Lord heere am I, and the children whom thou hast giuen me. And that they may returne their Commission thus: Whereas thou O Lord gauest mee this people, and badst mee deliuer them, that they goe not downe into hell, Lord I haue done it: it is the thing my soule aymed at with all my desire and endeuour: and by thy mercy I haue effected it accordingly.

And the rather must all Christian Mi­nisters seriously intēd the sauing of soules, inasmuch as Antichrist doth so earnestly [Page 53] seeke the destruction of soules, by winning Turkes and Iewes, and Iesuites, are carefull to seduce soules. them to his Synagogue. The Turke spares no labour, no cost, to infect young chil­dren of Christians with his impure and blasphemous superstition. The Pope and his vassals (especially Iesuits,) vse al means, deuise many stratagems, spare no cost, nor labor, to seduce & inueagle young men, and the best wits. Surely their care and policie herein is admirable: and yet alas, when (like the Pharisies) they haue com­passed Sea and land to make a Proselite, they make him like themselues, the childe of hel.

And they are so farre from hauing any Commission from God to doe this, or any blessing promised, as contrariwise GOD forbids them, and his curse lyeth vppon them for so doing.

Shall they be so diligent to destroy soules without a commission, and incurre Gods curse for their labour? and shall not Chri­stian Ministers be much more diligent to winne and redeeme soules, hauing so large a commission for the purpose, and so great a blessing promised thereunto?

In the next place, this doctrine hath [Page 54] vse to the hearers. First, to let them see 2. Vse for Hearers. the excellencie of this calling, which hath a Commssion and power to redeeme them 1 To see the excel­lencie of this calling. from hell and damnation, & what honour is due vnto it: and to let the wicked man see (which any way abuseth either the persons or the function) how base & vn­thankefull men they are, to recompence euill for good, and therefore no maruell though euil do neuer depart from the houses and families of such men: and further, to en­courage all men to giue thēselues to God in this calling, for see here what they are, euen the high Commissioners of God. Wee haue in our estate, a power deligated to Ministers are Gods high Com­missioners. certaine men of worth, and it is called the high Commission, because they haue power to doe great things, and that man thinkes himselfe happy who can bring his sonne to this, to be thought fit to bee one of this Commission: but behold heere a higher Commission, a Commission from God, to re­deeme soules from the power of hell, and the diuels clawes: this is in deed a high Com­mission, and so high as this, was neuer granted out of the Court of heauen to any [Page 55] creature but to Ministers: they therefore are the High Commissioners of the high God. Is it not then an honour and happi­nesse vnto thee to bring thy sonne to this estate?

And lastly, this must teach all hearers, 2. Hearers, Ergo, must submit thē ­selues to bee redeemed. their dutie to Gods word: namely, to sub­mit themselues vnto it: for if the Mini­ster haue a Commission to redeeme thy soule, it must be by the word & holy dis­cipline. Therefore thy dutie is to heare Gods word patiently, to submit thy selfe vnto it, to be taught and instructed, nay, to be checked and rebuked, and to haue thy sinnes discouered, & thy corruptions ript vp. If thou wouldst haue thy cause succeed wel, thy Lawyer must discouer the weaknesses of it: If thy body to be cured, thy Physition must purge the corruption of it. So if thy soule bee to be redeemed, thy Minister must see the weaknes, & purge the corruptions of it, and though his doc­trine be harsh, & hard vnto thy nature, and ye discipline of ye Gospel seeme rough vnto thee, yet must not thou rage and rebel a­gainst it, nor hate him, nor raile at his persō [Page 56] but submit thy selfe vnto it, for it is the message and Ministerie of thy saluation: if otherwise, thou doest indeede a great wrong to the Minister, for thou frustra­test his commission: but alas, a farre greater to thy selfe, for thou furstratest thine owne saluation.

THE SECOND Treatiſe …

THE SECOND Treatise of the Duties and Dignities of Ministerie, by Mai­ster Perkins.

TO THE RIGHT worshipfull and Reuerend Iud­ges, Sir Iohn Sauile Knight, one of the Barons of his Maiesties Exchequer, and Sir Christopher Yeluerion Knight, one of the Iudges of his Majesties Court of Kings Bench, and Sir Edward Phillips Knight, his Maiesties Sargeant at Lawe, now or late the worthie Iudges of our Nor­theren Circuite, The spirit of wisedome, zeale & cou­rage be multiplied.

RIght worshipfull, it is sayd in other Nati­ons, and written in some of their bookes, that there are three disgraces of the En­glish Nation: The Ignorance, or (that I may so call it) the vnlearned of our Gētrie & Nobili­tie, the beggery of our poore, & the Basenes of the bodie of our Ministerie, The first blot, our Nobilitie and Gentrie haue well wiped off, since the first daies of our blessed Queen Elizabeth, partly by studie at home, partlie by trauell a­broade, and I hope they will do it more & more: The second hath beene well lessened by good lawes of late, and would hee more, if the Exe­cution were as good as our lawes b [...]e, & it were much honour to our Nation, and more to our [Page] Religion, if it were quite taken away: for hee that tells vs there shall bee poore euer with vs, saith also, there shall not bee a begger amongst Mat. 26. 11. vs; If there were no poore, what should become Deut. 15. of Charitie? for it is Charitie, to relieue Po­uertie, not to maintaine Beggerie: Pouerty may bee a Crosse, but it is no Curse: but Beg­gerie is a fearefull curse, threatened on the enemies of God▪ and Dauid saith not, hee ne­uer saw a righteous mans child poore, but that Psalm. 109. 10. hee neuer saw him begge his bread. The daily cries in our streetes, crie for yet further refor­mation Psal. 37. 35. heereof, that the impotent poore may bee sufficiently prouided for, that he neede not, and the Sturdie begger complied to worke, that hee may not be suffered to begge. Happy you, or whosoeuer can haue a hand in effecting this blessed worke, wee who can doe little else, shall pray for it, and for them that labour in it. But now for the third, I feare none but the ve­rie hand of God, can wipe out that staine from our Church: The basenesse of the generall body of our Ministerie, whence is it, but either from the vnworthinesse, or Pouertie thereof: and the vnworthinesse, whence is it, but from the Pouertie, and base maintenance of our Mi­nistry, which was once robbed by the Abbies, and after by some in our owne State, which was then Popish, and Poperie that stands so much [Page] vpon Non dimittitur peccatum nisi restitu­atur ablatum, yet for all that, would not re­store vnto the Church her tenthes againe. But as popish Abbies stole them, so a popish State kept them, and to their shame some of the good Professors of our Religion haue of late restored such as were in their hands, and there is hope that all our Professors, (vnlesse they care not to bee accounted hypocrus) will make some conscionable restitution We doe not craue that they would with Zacheus restore foure-fold (though it is apparant, that the Luke 19. &c. tenthes were got from vs in old time, by most false and forged Cauillations) we onely craue our owne, we would aske no more, nor willing­ly take lesse: for our whole duetie is still re­quired: then why should not our whole due be payd? And yet that the world may learne of vs contentednesse, as well by our practise as our doctrine, we would for the present take in good part, & rest contented with a part of our owne: And some competent portions out of the Im­propriations, (proportioned to the quantitie of the charge imposed, and the giftes and paines required) would for a time be a reaso­nable satisfaction in our Ministerie, vntil our state found it self, either better enabled or more straightly tied in Conscience to full restitution. [Page] But as I said, this is a worke of God himselfe, for if a man could doe it so many Parliaments would not haue slipt it, but some of them would haue eternized it selfe, with this honourable name to all posterities. The Parliament that restored Impropriations, but til that, or some other course (as good) bee taken▪ it is both vn­seasonable and vnreasonable to complaine of the Ignorant, or to craue a learned Ministe­rie. For shal the Oxes mouth be mousled, 1. Corinth. 9. 7. 9. 14. which treads out the corne, or shall a man goe to warre at his owne cost? and hath not God ordained (marke, it is his Ordinance) that those which teach the Gospel, shall liue of the Gospel? But alas, how shal the Mini­sterie of England liue of the Gospel, when my small experience can shew that in one Corner of one Countie of this Kingdom, wherin there are some 105. parishes, or parochial Chappels, The East-Riding of the Coun­ty of Yorke. almost a 100. of them, (if not a full 100.) are Impropriate: and amongst them I can shewe the most parishes haue but 10 pound or there­abouts some 8. li some 6. li. some [...]. li some foure pounds, some not 4. pounds yearly liuing for the Minister and those impropriations worth some 300. li many 200. li. almost all 100 li. per an yea there is one worth 400 pound per an: where there were but 8 li. left for the Mini­ster, [Page] vntill of late with much adoe, 10. pound more was obtained for a Preacher, and so there is out of 400, 8. pound shared for a Minister, and 10. pound caried for a Preacher, in that parish where there are 2000. Commu­nican [...]s. Of all the rest the Crowne hath some 100 pound rent, or not so much, & the remain­der of 180. pound being a rich liuing, for a wor­thy learned Minister, a competent liuing for 2. and more then some 7 painful & able mini­sters haue) I know not what becomes of it, vn­lesse it go to the feeding of Kits & Cormorats. Are not these goodly liuings for learned men? and may not wee expect a learned ministerie, where there is such maintenance? & I hartily with that other countries, be not able to showe the like Presidents. I haue the rather made re­lation hereof, that our high Court of Parlia­ment, may see how great cause they haue, to go forward with that motion already by the made, for the establishing of a learned Ministerie. But if they bring it not to passe, what then re­maineth, but to hope that the great God of heauen, will put into the heart of the God on earth our noble king (into whose hands he hath put the sword of soueraigne authoritie) an irre­ [...]o [...]able and unresistable resolution to execute his supreme power, for the reformation of this [Page] euill, which as Maister Perkins saith in this treatise) may well be called the Kings euill, for it will hardly be healed, but by the will & po­wer of a king. In the meane time this. Trea­tise of that worthy man, may be a motiue to our zealous professors, who haue any impropria­tions in their owne hands, to excite and prouoke them to a conscionable restitution, in whole or in part, as their estate may beare, or their, conscience shall mooue them. For heerein are layd downs and mixed together, both the du­ties to be done by faithfull Ministers, and the Dignities due vnto them for their duties: and so seeing the dignities of that calling to bee most honourable, and the duties so chargeable, it cannot but grieue their christian harts to see the maintenance so miserable.

This Treatise I first of all send to you, & vn­der your names to the world, & to you first, for as I am sure you loued the Author, and honoured those excellent gifts of God in him, so you cānot but accept this after birth of his (as a fatherles child for the fathers sake. And for my self, to cō ­ceale al personal & priuat respects, in the name of many thousands in the Northeren coun­tries, I praise God, for the good done in those parts, by your painful courses, & religious care, not doubting, but if your selues, or the like [Page] bee imployed there, to asist our honourable and Religie us Lord President that the multitude of Popish Priestes there lurking, will bee dayly lessened, the number of preachers augmen­ted, Poperie put downe, and the Gospell maintained more and more. Which blessing GOD graunt to that and all other Coun­teries of this Kingdome, for his mercies sake: and giue vnto you, & all others in your place, the spirit of courage and constancie, in these de­clining dayes, that being faithfull in your great charges, vnto the end, you may receiue the Crowne of life: for which he hartily prayeth, who will euer rest,

VV. Crashawe.

The second Treatise, of the Duties and Dignities of the Ministerie.

Esay. 6.

5. Then I said, woe is me, I am vn­done for I am a man of polluted lips, and dwell in the midst of a people of polluted lips: for my eyes haue seene the king and Lord of hostes.

6. Then flewe one of the Seraphins vnto me, with a hote coale in his hand.

7. Which he tooke from the Altar with the tonges: and touched my mouth and said, Loe this hath touched thy lips, and thy iniquitie shall be taken away, and thy sin shall be purged.

8. Also I heard the voyce of the Lorde, saying, whom shall I send, and who shall goe for vs? then said I, here am I, send me: and he said goe.

IN the fiue former Chapters are cōtai­ned such Sermons, as the Prophet had made vnder Vzziah king of Iuda: At this Chapter begin such as he preached in the raigne of Iotham, [Page 58] and so forward: But before hee either The Cohoe­rence. preach or prophecie of any thing, in King Iothams dayes, or his successors, the Lord in this Chapter giues a newe commission to the Prophet, & a newe With a new King, God giues the Prophet a new Com­mission. confirmation to this Calling: the olde king in whose dayes Esayah was first called being now dead, & another suc­ceeding him, God with the new king, reneweth the calling & commission of the Prophet: wherein God doth not giue him another calling, for one cal­ling to the office of the ministery is suf­ficient: but hee confirmeth the calling formerly giuen, by repeating & ratify­ing it. And this God did to Esay, not as he was an ordinarie, but an extraordi­nary prophet: for ordinary Ministers need no renouation of their calling, nor any new signes of cōfirmation, but ex­traordinary prophets, who come in ex­traordinary maner, & to doe many ex­traordinary workes, God in his wisdom wil haue their calling confirmed, again, & againe, & that by very extraordina­ry meanes. Out of which practise of the Lord, we learne, how great cause wee Ergo, extra­ordinary. haue to doubt these men, to bee either [Page 59] fantasticall or worse, who pretend ex­traordinary Callings o [...] motions in these dayes are not easi­ly to be be­leeued. callings in these dayes, and yet scarce can shew vs any good signes of an ordinary, much lesse of an extra­ordinatie motion: for if in those dayes, when such courses were more cōmon, God will haue his extraordinary Pro­phets calling to be renued & cōfirmed, again, & againe, then certainly in these dayes, we may iustly require, more, & more wonderfull signes of an extraor­dinary calling afore we belieue it: and if God himselfe was so carefull to satis­fie his Church in those dayes of the vo­cation of his prophet, surely the church in these daies hath much more cause to doubt in such cases, and to require ma­ny and extraordinary signes, afore it acknowledge any such extraordinary calling: These men therefore offer much wrong to the Church, & deserue both the censure thereof, and the sword of the Magistrate, who dare so boldly offer and obtrude to the Church their owne fancies and dreames, as extraor­dinary motions of Gods spirit. This is the occasion and coherence.

This Chapter hath two partes, The parts of the Chapt. [Page 60] first, the meanes of his confirmation, from the beginning to these words: se­condly, the confirmation it selfe, from these words to the end: the meanes of his confirmation is a vision he saw from heauen, of certaine holy Angels appea­ring and speaking to him, in the first 4. verses. In the confirmation, which fol­loweth in these words, are three points [...]

1 The effect of the vision, which i The parts of this text. wrought in the Prophet, it caused him feare, it astonisht him, and cast him downe: in the fifth verse.

2 His Consolation, & raising vp again after his feare, in the 6. and 7. verses.

3 The renuing of his Commission a­gaine, from thence to the end.

The feare and astonishment of the Prophet, is described,

1 By the signes, of which are two;

1 A note of exclamation, woe is me.

2 By a note of extreame deiection in himselfe, I am vndone.

2 By the causes of it, which are also set downe to be two:

1 He was a man polluted, and dwelt amongst people polluted.

[Page 61] 2 He had seene the Lord. 1. Point is the feare of the prophet.

Then said I, woe is me, I am vndone.

The first point in order is, the feare & extasie into which the Lord droue his holy Prophet, which the Lord did not in his anger, but in his loue vnto him, not for a punishment of sinne, but as an euidence of his further loue: for the intent and purpose of God in striking this feare into him, was to inable him to be a true prophet, & a fit messenger for himself. It may seeme a strange course, which God taketh to confirme & raise vp his seruant in zeale and courage, to strike him into an extreame feare, euen to astonish and amaze him, and yet we see it is the course which the Lord ta­keth: out of which practise of the Lord, we learne this doctrine: That all true Doct. Best Ministers most ama­zed at their enterance. Ministers, especially such as are depu­ted to the greatest works in his church, must be first of all striken into a great feare, in consideration of the greatnes of their function, yea, into an amaze­ment and astonishment, in the admira­tion of Gods glory & greatnes, whose [Page 62] roome they occupy, & whose message they bring, & the more they are afraid and shrinke, so it be vnder the contem­plation of Gods Maiestie, and their owne weaknes, the more likelier it is that they are truly cald of God, & ap­pointed for worthy purposes in his Church: but he that steps to this functi­on without feare, he may thrust in him­selfe, but its doubtfull whether hee bee cald of God, as here the Prophet was: Nor is it so here alone, but euery where when God called any of his seruants, to any great worke, be first droue thē into these feares and a mazements, as is eui­dent Exod. 3. 11. & 4. 10. 13. in Moses, in Ieremie 1. 6. 7. Ieremie, in Act. 9. 6. &c. S. Paul and others. The reason of this dealing of the Lord is plaine: namely, because mans nature is alwayes ready to take e­nough and too much vnto it selfe, God therefore in his wisdome puts a bridle vnto the corrupt nature of mā, & asto­nisheth it, least it presume too much, & take too much vpon it selfe: Againe▪ a Minister is to preach vnto the people, feare & reuerēce of the Lord: but how can he do so to others, whē he hath not [Page 63] tyed that bond in his owne conscience, nor was euer cast downe in admiration of Gods glory & Maiestie: And lastly, the ministery is a high & excellent cal­ling (especially the office of extraordi­nary prophets in the old testament) & is therefore subiect to pride, and to bee puft vp with self-conceits, & therefore teacheth the Apostle to Timothy, that a 1. Tim. 13. Minister may not be a yong scholler, least he be puft vp, & fall into the condemnation of the wicked: giuing vs to vnderstand, that it is ye peculiar danger of that calling to haue high conceits of thēselues, because of the height & dignitie of ther functi­on. Therfore to preuent this incōueni­ence, God in mercy appointeth that all his true Ministers shall haue some means or other, to be cast down euen to nothing in thēselues, & shall be driuen into such feares & amazements at sight of their owne wickednesse, as they shal throwe downe themselues at Christs feete, and denying themselues wholy, shal acknowledge that they are in him whatsoeuer they are: and doe relye, [Page 64] and trust onely on his grace and helpe. Vse. Ergo, Mini­sters: and especially in the Vniuer­sities, labour to bee hum­bled in sight of Gods

The vse of this doctrine, as it is for all Ministers, so specially for vs which liue in the Vniuersity: we liue as it were in a Seminary, and many of vs are here­after by Gods grace to be framed to the Ministery, and some of vs already are. Now here we haue many occasions to be puft vp in self-conceits: we see our greatnes, and their own meane­nesse. selues growe in time, in degrees, in lear­ning, in honour, in name and estimati­on: & to many of vs God giues good portions of his gifts: what are all these, but so many baites to allure vs to pride, & vaine opinions of our own worths? but let vs remēber the end wee aime at, is not humane, nor carnal: our purpose is to saue soules, Then the weapons of our warre must not be carnal, as pride, vaine­glory, 2. Cor. 11. 4. and self-conceit. If therefore we euer looke to be made instruments of Gods glory in sauing of soules, then at the first set we not before our eyes the honour, but the daunger of our calling, and humble we our selues vnder the migh­tie hand of our God, that he may exale [Page 65] vs in his due time: and let vs bee content that God giue any occasion or meanes to pul vs down, either by outward crosse, or inward temptation: and let vs re­ioyce, when wee are thereby so farre cast downe, that wee cry out in the astonish­ment of our spirits, as the Prophet heere [...] Woe is mee, I am vndone: but otherwise if wee will needes followe the swinge of our proude natures, and trust in our owne abilitie, gifts, and learning, let vs knowe, wee vse carnall weapons in a spiri­tuall warfare: and let vs bee assured the Lord will worke no great worke in his Church by our Ministerie: wee may raise our selues in worldly estimation, and worke out our owne purposes, but we shal do little in the saluation of soules: for those men doe pronounce the most powerfull blessings on other mens soules, and speake the best wordes of comfort to other mens consciences, which oftenest say vnto themselues; Woe is mee, I am vn­done.

Furthermore, whereas the Prophet at this Vision and Reuelation of Gods [Page 66] glory vnto him, cryeth out of him­selfe, 2 Doct. Ergo, The Prophets hold not the opinion of the Interces­sion of An­gels. Woe is mee, I am vndone: being wordes of extreame feare and astonish­ment, and of so lowe a deiection as is a degree towards desperation (if it had gone forward): let vs learne that the Prophet helde not in his iudgement, the Doctrine of Intercession of Angels and Saints for particular men, for if hee had, hee neede not at the sight of Gods maiestie, foorthwith to haue cryed out, Woe is mee, I am vndone, but hee might haue stayed himselfe a while in this co­gitation, I will desire Moses, Samuel, or Dauid, to pray to this glorious GOD for mee, or heere are holy Angels of the Seraphins here present, they see in what fearefull case I am, I will pray to them to speake to this glorious and mightie Lorde for mee, that I perish not in this feare: but hee instantly seeing the Lorde appeare in Maiestie, and fearing his iust wrath, (being guiltie of his owne corruptions) without any hope or expe­ctation, or (as he seemes) without the least cogitation of helpe or assistance from [Page 67] any creature, he cryeth out, I am vndone. 3 Doct. Ergo, The calling to the Ministery is a worke like vnto the cal­ling of a sin­ner to the state of grace.

Lastly, whereas hee exclaimeth, Woe is mee, I am vndone: being words of a soule humbled and deiected, and hereby shew­eth himselfe to bee in that case, which a poore sinner is, when the preaching of the Lawe hath humbled him, by shewing him his sinnes and his extreame daunger by them. Wee may learne, that to bee called to the Mnisterie, is to be as it were conuerted and regenerate: and that when a man is called thereunto, it is a worke little lesse then that whereby GOD cal­leth a sinner from his sinne, to the state of repentance: for as God first casteth downe the sinner, before hee giue him grace, or any feeling of his loue in Christ: so heere, hee first abaseth and ca­steth downe the Prophete in the sight of GODS Maiestie, and his owne miserie, afore hee honour him with a Commission to preach his word vnto his people. Which I note against those men, which holde it so ordinary a mat­ter Vse. Ergo, [...] be required, to to enter into the Ministerie, as ma­ny doe, which take it vppon them in [Page 68] worldly and politique purposes. And Qualify a man for the Ministerie. some of a better ranke, which thinke if a man haue learning, degrees and age, hee is sufficiently qualified for that cal­ling. But alas, this is not all; there is a greater worke to be wrought then so, hee must be humbled and cast down in sight of the greatnesse of that calling, of the ma­iestie of that God whose roome hee is to execute, and of the vnworthinesse of himselfe to so great a worke: hee must be resolued, that to call a man to the Mini­sterie, is the greatest worke that GOD worketh in his Church, but the conuer­ting of a sinner, and calling him to the state of grace: nay it is a worke euen like vnto it: for as a sinner in his conuersion, so hee at his Vocation to that place, is often to cry out in the amazement of his soule, Woe is mee, I am vndone. As therefore they are fouly deceiued, which thinke any holinesse or sanctification, can suf­ficiently qualifie a man without lear­ning, so are they no lesse which thinke all outward complements to bee suffici­ent without this worke, which heere was [Page 69] wrought in the holy Prophet. Thus Causes of we see the feare & astonishment of the his feare 2. Prophet. It followeth.

For I am a man of polluted lippes. 1 Cause pol­lution of himselfe & his people.

Now follow the causes of his feare, which are two. The first is, his owne pollution and sinfulnesse, and the sin­fulnesse of his people: his own he free­ly 1 His owne. He was a man of pol­luted lippes. confesseth in these words; I am a man of polluted lippes: that is, I am a miserable and sinfull man, and therefore I feare and tremble to stand in Gods presence: nay, I dare not looke vpon the Lorde, for my sinnes. But it may be demaun­ded, how could the Prophet say thus truely, for he was a holy man, and iusti­fied A he was a polluted man. in Gods prefence, by his true faith in the Messias, and sanctified by repen­tance: can a man iustified and sanctifi­ed, say, he is a man polluted? I answere, And he com­plaineth not of capltall sinnes. It is doubtlesse, he was so, he therefore complaineth here not of any great and enormous sinnes, which hee had com­mitted to the publike scandall of the [Page 70] Church, but first of the corruptiō of his But of the corruption of his nature nature, which in him as in all men is a very sea of iniquity, & which alwaies appeares the more, the neerer a man comes to God, and therefore did now most apparantly discouer it selfe in the prophet, when he was in the presence of the Lord himself. Secondly, he com­plaineth of some actual sins of his life, and it is more likely of some sins of o­mission, 2 Of some omission in his calling. then of cōmission: for we find not that the prophet was euer touched with any great sin, & where we know it not, we are in charitie not to imagine it. So that it is most probable, hee com­plaineth of some smaller faults, or neg­ligences in his Ministery: as not prea­ching to the people at some time when he ought, or not preaching so willingly or cheerfully as he should, or desire to leaue preaching, because the people were stubborne & disobedient, or some impatience in his Ministery, when the people were rebellious and resisted his doctrine, which passion might the ra­ther vexe him (as we read it did Ieremy) [Page 71] the Iewes were so stubborne & stifnec­ked a people: or it may be some want of zeale or forwardnes, these, or some such were the cause of his feare: And the cōscience of these makes him here cry out that he cannot stand in the sight of God. Where we learn, first, what a ten­der Doct. Ergo, Mini­sters must be men of tender con­science. conscience godly Ministers must haue aboue all men: namely, that they must make conscience, not of the great and grosse sins onely; but euen of the lowest & least sins: and he must ende­uour in his calling, not only to be cleere of great crimes, but as far as may be, to bee free from the least appearance of euill, and from the least negligences in his place, for a small faultin other men is great in them, and that which may be some waies pardonable in other men, is no way in them: they must therefore watch ouer themselues most carefully, And make confidence of the least sinnes. and take heede to all their waies: & for this ende is it, that a Minister in godly wisedome must often depriue himselfe euen of many things (which it may be, lawfully hee might vse) least his li­berty [Page 72] be an occasion of euill to others: and must abstaine from the least sins, least euen they be blemishes to his cal­ling, and burthens to his conscience. And hence is it, that a minister cannot be too carefull in his calling, in his words, diet, company, recreation, appa­rel, gestures, and in his whole carriage, because little sins are so great in thē, Es­pecially And be most carefull in his ministery both pub­likely and priuately. ministers must here learne the Apostles lesson, to bee instant in season and out of season: to preach and exhort, to comfort and rebuke, publikely and priuate­ly: to good, to bad: when it is wel taken, when it is ill taken: when they willing­ly receiue it, and when they stubborn­ly resist it: when they commend him, and reward him, and when they raile at him, and persecute him for it: thus must he be diligent in season and out of sea­son, for the least negligence in his du­tie, or omitting the least opportunity of doing good, will when God visits his conscience, bee a burthen and vexati­on to him, as it was heere to the Pro­phet.

[Page 73] And furthermore, if these smal sinnes Vse. Vrgo, Mi­nisters for great sins should be greatly humbled. thus afflicted the Prophet, then alas what is to be thought of those ministers who make no conscience of foule and scandalous sinnes? how shall Symonie, Incontinencie, Vsury, inhospitality, co­uetousnesse, Ignorance, Idlenesse, care­lesse Nonresidencie, how shall these (I say) and other like grieuous crimes op­presse & burthen the soule, when as the smallest sins doe so affright this holy man? Surely, whē God shal visite them, their states will bee most fearefull, nor, shall any mans case be so miserable, as an vncōscionable ministers: And thogh nowe such loose and licentious Mini­sters seeme to liue in Iolitie, & without any feare, yet when God shall appeare vnto their conscience, then will they cry out in fearefull anguish, Woe is me, I am vndone. And for great negh [...] gēce in their calling, else they haue no consci­ence.

And againe, if these smal faults so af­frighted this holy prophet, & burdened his conscience, then what pittifull con­sciences haue those ministers, whose daily negligence, and vnconscionable [Page 74] carelessenesse in their places is such, as all men speake of, and yet they are not touched: surely these men are not of so tender cōsciences as the prophet was: & either the prophet here was much more nice then needed, or else these men will proue to be in a miserable estate.

Lastly, let Ministers of care and con­science, be here comforted in the ex­ample Good and faithfull mi­nisters not to be dis­couraged, though they haue some wants, for so the prophets had, but let them com­plaine of them as here the prophet doth. of the Prophet: who is there, but may find imperfections and blemishes in himselfe, which will often make him cry out; Woe is me? but let not that dis­comfort them, but rather reioyce, that they can see their owne weaknes, as the Prophet did here: If they haue cause to exclaime against themselues, they are not alone, it was this, and all other ho­ly prophets case before them. In hauing imperfections in themselues, they are no more miserable then the Prophet was: but let them labour to be as blessed in seeing & complaining of themselues as hee was: And let euery minister as­sure himselfe, that the more hee makes conscience, euen of the least sinnes of [Page 75] all, the more he resembleth the ancient holy Prophets, & the more likely is he to worke effectually in his ministery. For his duty is to worke in his people a conscience, not of great sinnes onely, but euen of all: but how can he doe that in them, if he haue not first of all done it in himselfe? hence it is therefore, that godly ministers finde fault with them­selues, Godly mi­nisters find [...] fault with themselues when the world can­not. when other men cannot, and cry out against themselues, for their pollu­tions (with the prophet here) when no other man can accuse them of the least crime: nay, when other doe magnifie God for his graces on them, and praise their giftes, and commend their good liues, euen then doe they condemne themselues, and exclaime against their owne corruptions: and their owne smallest negligences, or omissions, are great wounds to their consciences: and their least sinnes, and their most pardo­nable infirmities, are sore burthens vn­to them: for of all men in the worlde, a godly minister is a man of the most ten­der conscience.

[Page 76] Hitherto hath the prophet complai­ned generally of his pollution.

Particularly, hee exclaimeth against the pollution of his lippes. But why will Particularly he complai­neth against the polluti­on of his lippes. some say, complaines hee of the polluti­on of his lippes, rather then of his heart, or his hands, or any other part of him, were they not all polluted▪ yes, all in some measure: and was not he grieued at them all? yes assuredly, wee must grant that also. But the reason is he was a prophet, his dutie was to vse his tongue, the practise of his calling con­sisted For a Pro­phets dutie consists in the vse of his tongue. in the vse of his tongue: for a mi­nister is an interpeter, as he is called, Iob 33. 23. that is, the peoples to God by prayer, and Gods to the people by preaching: he is Gods mouth, and the peoples mouth: so that the tongue of a Minister is that part of his body, which is to be vsed as a principall instrument of Gods glory, and more to the setting foorth of his honour then any other: Now euery man is to be tryed what he is by his cal­ling, rather then by any other acciden­tall or collaterall courses: therefore the [Page 77] honour or dishonour of a minister, is the vse or the abuse of his tongue: and his comfort or discomfort is the well v­sing, or not vsing of it. The prophet therefore here affrighted at Gods pre­fence, His smallest negligence in teaching, checks his conscience. and therefore retyring into him­selfe, presently his conscience checkes him for his most proper sins: namly, for some fault or negligence in his Mini­sterie, (which is the proper sinne of that calling) and therfore is it that he exclai­meth against the pollutions of his lippes: out of which practise of his we may learne; Vse. 1. Vrgo po­pish doctrin of mans me­rits is false.

First, the vanitie of the Papists, who magnifie the merites of holy mens workes: for if this holy prophet, a man truly iustified, & extraordinarily sanc­tified, yet durst not stand before God in this little apparance of his glory, notwithstanding all his zeale, and cou­rage, and conscience, and paines, and sufferings in his function, but was cast downe so farre, from a conceit of his owne worth, that hee cryed out; Woe is mee, I am vndone. How then can [Page 78] wee who are no better, but much worse then hee, stand before GOD in the day of Iudgement, in the great ap­pearing of his infinite iustice and glo­rie? Rather doubtlesse, as here the smal­lest pollution of his lippes, and negli­gence in his calling, droue him out of all conceit of merit, when once hee came into the presence of GOD: so the due consideration of our so many and foule pollutions aboue his, should beate downe all proude conceites of our owne goodnesse, when wee ap­peare before GOD. It is there­fore to bee feared, that the Papists, who thus magnifie their owne merits, doe seldome or neuer enter into ear­nest consideration of their owne infir­mities, doe seldome persent them­selues in the presence of Gods maie­stie. For if they did, then doubtlesse the least sight of their least pollutiō, would make them farre from euer thinking of their own merits. And of workes of superrogati­on.

They also tell vs, of workes of superrogation, but it seemes heere, [Page 79] this holy Prophet had none of them. And they teach, a man may in this life And perfect fulfilling the lawe in this life. perfectly fulfill the Lawe, but who can doe it, i [...] not ministers? And what mi­nisters, if not extraordinary prophets? And yet Isaiah (the first and chiefe of them) exclaimeth here in pittiful man­ner against his pollutions: Doubtlesse, if the papists would cease flattering themselues, and not examine their con­sciences by their own pleasing corrup­tion, but present themselues in the face and presence of GODS Maiestie, they would bee farre from these con­ceits. 2. Vse. Ergo Ministers must take heed of negligence in their function a­boue all sinnes, for that bur­theneth the conscience most heaui­ly of all.

In the next place, whereas the pro­phet complaineth of the pollution of his lippes: As of the peculiar sinne of his place: Ministers are heere taught, to auoide that sinne aboue all other; and to labour in that dutie a­boue any other: for the dooing of it, is his most comfort: the want of it is his most vexation: his tongue is the Instrument giuen him to honour God, if hee vse it well, it yeeldes him com­fort, [Page 80] more then any other duties.

But if he vse not, or abuse his tongue, the pollution of his lippes will bee the heauiest burthen of all: they there­fore are greatly deceiued, who thinke a Minister to discharge sufficiently Other ver­tues are ex­cellent, but cannot suf­fice, if this want. his duetie, though hee preach not if he keepe good Hospitalitie and make peace amongst his Neighbours, and performe other workes of charatie and good life: for if a Minister haue not this vertue, hee hath none: If hee preach not; If hee abuse his lippes: or if hee open them not, hee hath no con­science, nor can haue any comfort, for that is the principall dutie of a Mi­nister (though all the other bee requi­red to make him compleate): the want of them may condemne him be­fore men, but it is the pollution of his lippes, which presently checkes him before GOD, as we see here in this holy Prophet: the conclusion then is to euery Minister, that if hee had all the vertues and good properties, that can commend a man in the world, [Page 81] yet if his lippes be polluted, either by not preaching, or by negligēt, idle, or care­lesse preaching, this pollution will so staine his conscience, and so burthen him in the presence of God, that the time will come (notwithstanding al his other good qualities) he will cry out in farre more pittifull maner thē here the Prophet doth [...] Woe is [...] I am vndo [...], because I am a [...]an of polluted lippes. It followeth;

And I dwell in the midst of a people of pol­luted 2. His peo­ples pollu­tion. lippes.

The Prophet not onely complaines of his own pollution, but of his peoples He com­plaines of it to teach, 1. That a Minister is to confesse his peoples sinnes as wel as his owne. also amongst whom he liued, and this he doth for these causes: First, to teach vs, that it is the Ministers duty to con­fesse not onely his owne sinnes, but the sinnes of his people, & to complaine of them to God: for as he is the peoples Interpretar to God, he must not thinke it enough to put vp their petitions, to vnfolde their wants, & craue reliefe for them at Gods hand, but hee must fur­ther take knowledge of the sins of his [Page 82] people, and make both publique and priuate confession of them to God: and the more particularly he can doe this, the better: and this hee is to doe, both For gene­rally he is accessarie to his peoples sinnes. for the peoples good, and for his owne also, because it cannot be but the sinnes of his people, are in some sort his: for this is the peculiar danger of the Ma­gistrates and Ministers [...]ling, that ge­nerally the sinnes of their people are theirs: I meane, that they are accessarie to the sinnes of their people, either by prouoking them by their euil example, or by not reprouing, or not hindring or suffering, or winking, or couering & concealing, or not punishing them, or not carefully enough vsing meanes to preuent them: by all which meanes and many more, it comes to passe, that the peoples sinnes are the Ministers by communication: so that as well for his owne sake, as theirs, hee is to confesse to GOD their sinnes, as well as his owne.

Now if a Minister must confesse his peoples sinnes, then it followeth [Page 83] confequently, that he must know them; and take notice of them, for else hee 1. Vse. Ergo, a mi­nister must know his peoples sins. cannot confesse them. And this is one cause why the holy Ghost commands a Pastor to know his flocke.

He must not onely haue a flocke, and knowe which is his flocke: or haue a ge­nerall Pro. 2 [...]. 23. [...]ye ouer it, out hee must haue a particular and [...] knowledge of the state of it, [...]nd the more particular the better.

And if the Minister ought to know and confesse his peoples sinnes, then if Ergo, it is best for a Minister to bee with his people. followeth, first, that it is best for a Mi­nister to bee present with his people, that so hee may the better know them and their state: and certainly if it be a Ministers dutie to confesse to God the pollutions of his people, then wilfull and carelesse Nonresidency and all ab­sence, without iust and conscionable causes, must needs be a foule & feare­full sin. For how could Isayah haue cō ­fessed, that his people were a people of polluted lips, but that he dwelt amongst them. Nay, saith the Prophet, he dwelt [Page 84] in the midst among them, indeede well may hee know and confesse his peoples pollutions, that dwelles in the midst a­mongst them. 2. Vse. Ergo, people must cōfesse their sinnes, and reueale thē to their Minister.

Againe, if the Minister be to confesse his peoples sinnes, and therefore must needs knowe them, then it followeth also that they must discouer & confesse them vnto him, or else [...] not possible he should perfectly kno [...]e their estate: the want of this is a great fault in our Churches, for how euer we condemne Auricular confession, as a very pollicie in the deuisers, and as a rack to the con­sciences Not popish but volunta­rie. of poore Christians, yet we not onely allowe, but call and [...] for that confession, wherby a Christian volun­tarily And of such sinnes as dis­quiet the conscience. at all times may resort to his Pa­stor, and open his estate, and disburden his conscience of such sins, as disquiet him, and craue his godly assistance, and holy prayers: great blessing and com­fort doth doubtlesse followe them that vse this godly practise, and the want of it, is cause that a minister canot discerne the state euen of his own flock nor can [Page 85] complaine to God of their pollutions, and confesse their sinnes so particular­ly, as would be good both for him and them.

Secondly, the Prophet couples to­gether 2. To teach vs that a polluted people make their Mini­ster more or lesse pollu­ted also. his own pollution, and the pol­lutions of his people, as the adjuvant, or helping cause & the effect: For the pol­lution of a people, helpes forward the pollution of a Minister, and the worse people they are, the worse doe they make him, though he be otherwise ne­uer so good: For euen the Prophet, though called of God himself, & iusti­fied and sanctified, & a man of extra­ordinary grace, yet dwelling in ye midst of a people so stubborne & disobedi­ent, as the Iewes were, was something touched with their pollutions: Mini­sters (euen the best) are men, and this comes to passe by reason of the corrup­tion of their nature as they are mē: the nature of which corruption is to ap­prehend any euill where euer it findes it, and to partake with it: regeneration qualifieth & abates this corruption, but takes it not away perfectly in this life: [Page 86] whereby it comes to passe, that a Mini­ster, liuing amongst euill people, can­not but be somwhat stained with their pollution, of what sort soeuer they be: insomuch as it is often seene, that one knowne to be otherwise disposed of himselfe, is found to bee disposed to this or that euill, by liuing amongst a people so disposed. And againe, that a minister in such a place, and amongst such people, free from such and such sinnes, remoued to another place, is there found more or lesse tainted with them, because they abound amongst the people: and yet further, that a mi­nister, knowne to bee faithfull, painfull and zealous, & comming to a disobe­dient, stubborne, froward, or prophane & dissolute people, his faith is weake­ned, A wicked people dull and decay Gods graces in good Ministers. Vse double. his zeale & courage abated, Gods graces in him dulled, & much decayed: godly Ministers doe daily complaine hereof, and experience euery where shewes it too true. Out of this, we may learne something both for our instruc­tion, and for our conuersation.

[Page 87] For our instruction, it here appeares 1. For in­struction: 1. See how corrupt our natur [...] is. how wicked and wretched the corrup­tion of our nature is, which cannot but receiue some contagion from the pol­lution of those with whom we liue: for this is so, not onely in them who carry a loose hand ouer themselues, but euen in such as looke most narrowly vnto their steps: as wee see here in this holy Prophet, who was a man of more then ordinary sanctification: how litle cause therfore hath any man to extoll nature? and how much lesse cause the schoole­men and some other papists, to giue the least commendation to our pure natu­rals: for if nature rectified by grace, be so hardly kept within compasse, alas how outragious & peruerse is it, when it raignes without controlment?

And for our further instruction, heere wee may see of what a cree­ping 2. What a creeping nature sinne hath. and incroaching nature sinne is, which like a secret venome in the naturall bodie, so it in the polliti­que body restes not in the place, or partie poisoned, but closely creepes [Page 88] & diffuseth it selfe into euery part and member of the whole: it creepes from man to man, yea, from an euil man to a good, from the worst man to the best: from prophane men, to godly Mini­sters: and as from publique persons (as Magistrates and Ministers) it descen­deth It wil creepe from Mini­sters to peo­ple, & from people to Minister. visibly, and the example of their euil life is palpably scandalous: so from the people to the Magistrate, or Mini­ster, it creepeth closely, & ascendeth in more secret and insensible manner, yet in the effect it is too sensible: for it is al­wayes seene, that they are something touched with their peoples pollutions: sinne is not onely as a poison spreading from the heart to all parts, from the mi­nister to the people: but as a gangreue, if it begin in the foot, wil without spee­dy preuention spred priuily to the hart: so sinne shewes it selfe, euen from the Ergo, stop sinne in the beginning. people to the Ministers: So great cause is there for all men to stop sinne in the beginning, to breake it in the egge, to giue water no passage, no not a little: for let this gangreue beginne at the feete, it [Page 89] will not rest till it be in the heart.

For our conuersation wee are heere 2. For our conuersa­tion. taught, first, if a Minister, by reason of the corruption of his owne nature, and the creeping nature of sinne, is in such danger to be stained with the peoples pollutions, then let all Ministers de­sire, and vse all good meanes to dwell 1. Ministers, Ergo, la­bour to liue amongst people. with a people as litle polluted as may be: otherwise let him assure himselfe to be polluted with them, which is both a great discōfort to his owne conscience (as here it was to the Prophet) and dis­grace to his profession: for if it be a du­tie of euery good professor of religion, to keepe himselfe vnspotted of the world, then how much more is it the Mini­sters Iam. 1. 17. duetie so to doe? and how foule a staine is it to the honour of his calling, to be polluted in the common polluti­ons of his people?

It may bee therefore good coun­sell to all godly Ministers in the pla­cing & disposing of themselues, not to enquire onely how good a liuing such [Page 90] and such a place is, how wel seated, how healthfull and beneficiall it will bee, (which are alas the common & almost the onely questions now adayes) but And in dis­posing themselues, rather re­gard it, then other com­moditie. principally, to regard what a people they be: and how affected, amongst whome they are to liue: if godly and wel disposed, or at least tractable and gentle, & willing to be taught, thē lesse to regard other incommodities: but if wicked, and prophane, or (which is worse) stubborne, froward, and vntrac­table, then lesse to regard the greatest commodities: & certainly if this point be well considered of, and how bitter it hath beene in the ende, to many who haue not regarded it, it will appeare, that this is the best encouragement or discouragement, the greatest commo­ditie, or discommoditie, and the best reason, either to win a mā to a place, or to drawe him from it, how good soe­uer it be otherwayes: they that neglect this dutie, and are led (or misled rather) with carnall and wordly respects, how [Page 91] iust is it vpon thē when they are made to cry in the sorrowe of their soule, W [...]e is me, I dwell in the midst of a people of pol­luted lippes.

And here such Ministers as haue A poore li­uing with good peo­ple better then a great liuing and euil people. poore liuings, but good people, let them not faint nor bee discouraged, they haue more cause to blesse God, then to be grieued, for doubtlesse they are farre better thē those who haue great liuings, and an euill people.

But as for those to whom God hath bene so good, as to bestowe vpon them competent liuings, and a willing and well disposed people, let them thinke themselues double blessed of God, and treble bound to honour God, & to doe good in his Church: and if such men goe not before their brethren in al Mi­nisterial care and dutie, their fault is a­boue al mens, & they make themselues vnworthy of so great mercies. 2. Ergo, Ministers must take heed of their company.

Againe, if that a polluted people, pollutes their Minister, here is a good warning for al ministers to be wary & [Page 92] choyse of their companie, with whom they will most priuately conuerse: for, as on the one side they may not retire themselues into solitarinesse, nor se­quester thēselues from all societie with their people, (which is rather a Cimi­call and fantasticall, then any way a re­ligious practise): so of all men are they to be most carefull, that they doe not loosely and lauishly bestow themselues on all companies, as too many doe in All compa­nies and all recreations are not for Ministers. our Church, to the great scandall ther­of, who care not with whom they con­uerse, but all companies, all places, all times, all sportes & recreations, al mee­tings, all occasions, are one with them: but alas, what maruel, though such men keepe not thēselues vnspotted of the world, but proue too offensiue to their calling: for seeing the best mē cannot liue with the best people, but they shall receiue some contagion from them, how care­fully ought ordinary ministers to make difference of men and meetings, times and places, and not diffusedly & care­lesly [Page 93] to thrust themselues into all: So doing shall they keepe their calling from much reproach, & preserue them­selues from much pollution, which o­therwise from their polluted people, they shal be sure to receiue.

And here people are to be admoni­shed, And people must not draw their Ministers too much into compa­ny. not too sharpely to censure their ministers: though hee bee not so soci­able with them all, as it may bee many would expect: for it concerns no man to be so warie of his company and his sports, as it doeth the minister: and if they would haue comfort and honour by their minister, let them bee carefull into what recreations & company they draw or desire him: for the more pol­luted the people are amongst whom he liues, the more carefull must he bee to keepe himself cleare from their pol­lutions.

Lastly, here people are taught, not to 3 People must not condemne too sharpely such Mini­sters as are faultie in their liues▪ for them­selues are the cause of it, being of euill liues themselues. be too sharpe condemners of those mi­nisters, whose conuersations are not so vnblameable as were to be wished: for as they liue ill, generally the cause is, [Page 94] because they liue amongst an il people.

Why then should they so much con­demne them, for such faults, as wherein themselues haue made them faultie? I say not, but our Church and state, and Ministerie, are to censure such men, (and it were good they did it more) but it is against all reason the people should do so, wheras themselues are the cause of it: For alas, if this holy Prophet was a man of polluted lippes, because hee dwelt with a people of polluted lippes: what maruell then, though ordinary Mini­sters be polluted with the common and vniuersall pollutions of their people: People therefore, are first of all to see that themselues bee well ordered and godly, and then iustly may they com­plaine, if the liues of their Ministers be not agreeable: but otherwise, it is not possible without very special grace of God, but that a minister shalbe more or lesse touched Wt those crimes which are the cōmon faults of his people. And lamentable experience daily lets vs see, Looke what sinnes a­boundes in any place, and there generally the Minister is tainted with it. that where a people in a town is giuen [Page 95] to drunkennesse, there the Minister, is either so for company, or at least too good a fellow: where a people are gi­uen to contention, there the Minister hath too many fuites: where the peo­ple be Popish, there the Minister is too superstitious: where the people bee ig­norant, there the Minister is no great clarke: where the people are giuen to any great sinne, there the Minister ge­nerally is not cleare from the same pol­lution: and it is seene, that the best mi­nisters & most carefull of all, doe com­plaine bitterly of the pollutions of their people: for that how soeuer it may bee they escape partaking with their sins: yet they alwayes finde, at the least a dulling & decaying of Gods graces in themselues, where the people are vnto­ward and disobedient. If therefore a Minister liues with such a people, his case is pittifull and daungerous, for he walkes in the midst of nets and snares, which are layd for him on euery side, and if he escape them (I meane, if hee [Page 96] keepe himselfe vnspotted, in the midst of a spotted & polluted people) his care and his conscience is worthy both ad­miration and imitation, and himselfe is worthy double honour, as being both a zealous minister and a holy man. But he whō God hath blessed with a good But such Ministers as liue with a good people and yet are loose, they are not wor­thy to be Ministers, but to be depriued. and tractable people, and wel affected to the worde, and yet himselfe liueth loosely & scandalously amongst them, a heauy burden and a hard account, ly­eth on that minister, and no rebuke is too rough no punishment too great, no censure too sharpe for him. And, if this holy Prophet, feare so much the pre­sence of God for his small pollutions, and yet liued amongst so wicked and polluted a people, then what heaui­nesse and horror, shall bee heaped on his soule, who cares not with how foule pollutions his life be stained, and yet liueth amongst a godly & wel dis­posed people? And thus wee haue the first cause of his feare, his owne, and his peoples pollutions.

It followeth.

[Page 97] And mine eyes hath seene the King, and 2 Cause of his feare, he sawe the Lord.Lord of Hostes.

THe second cause of the Prophets feare and astonishment is, He san the Lorde, who then appeared in glory vnto him: not that hee sawe the substance of God (for that is invisible How? In a vision. and incomprehensible) but his glory: Nor the fulnesse of his glory, for that cannot be endured, but a glimse of it: nor that with the eies of his body in or­dinary manner, but in a vision: where­in how farre the eyes of his body were vsed, neither the Prophet expresseth, nor wee can well conceiue. The mea­ning then is; In a vision hee sawe such glorie and Majestie, as hee knewe there was an extraordinary presence of the Lord of hostes, who is the King of glorie, at whose sight, and thought of his presence, instantly his conscience is smitten with feare, for his own infirmi­ties, and the pollutions of his people.

Wherein let vs first of all obserue the [Page 98] connexion and dependance of these two causes, one vpon another: for as they are both ioyntly the cause of his feare, so one of thē is in a sort the cause of another: he feareth, because of his own and his peoples sinnes, and because he sawe the Lord: but why is he afraid to see the Lord? the cause thereof is his owne and their sins, without which he would ne­uer haue beene affraid, but rather haue gloried to see the Lord: but his con­science checking him, for some defect of dutie in his calling, therfore he trem­bleth at the least glimse of Gods glory. Here let vs marke the ground of his Doct: the man that is in his sinnes endures not Cods pre­sence. 1 For God hates sinne, aboue all things. reason, which is this: That man that is in his sinnes, is not able to stand in the pre­sence of God: this is a generall and cer­taine truth, & the reasons of it are; First, the contrarietie betwixt God, and the nature of sinne, it being the onely thing which offends him, & which prouokes his wrath and iust displeasure: there­fore as a subiect cannot but be much a­mazed, if he hap to come into the kings presence, with any thing about him [Page 99] which the king hates, or cannot abide to see: so a man cannot but be extreame astonisht, if hee knowe himselfe to bee in Gods presence with his sinnes, which Gods soule hateth. 2 Sin makes a man a debter to God.

Secondly, sin makes a man indebted to God: for as the Lawe tyeth him first to obedience, so if he sin and faile in that, it bindes him to punishment: and the more a man sinneth, the deeper is he in Gods debt. If then in this world, a man willingly indures not the sight of him, in whose debt hee is; what maruell, though a poore sinner tremble at the presence of God, to whom he hath for­faited soule and all.

Thirdly, sin is that which prouoketh 3 Sin is that, that makes God angry. God to [...]: therefore a sinfull man feareth the presence of God, as a traitor the face of the Prince, or a malefactor of the Judge. For these causes, a wicked man endures not Gods presence. Degrees of Gods pre­sence.

Now Gods presence hath diuers de­geees. First, God is present to our cosci­ence, 1 To our thoughts. 2 To our nami [...]g him when we thinke of him. 2. He is present, when wee name him, or heare [Page 100] him named or mentioned by others, and these are the surthest off: Thirdly, God is neerer vnto vs in the presence of his Ordinances, as his Word and 3 Neere in his ordināces Sacraments, and publike seruice in the Congregation: Fourthly, there is a 4 Necrest at the last day. most apparant and sensible presence of God, which shall bee at the last Iudge­ment, when all men shall stand before him in his immediat presēce, to receiue their iudgement. Now all these pre­sences of God, are hatefull to a wicked A sinful man feares all these. man: for the first, a wicked man by his good will neuer thinkes of God, and if sometime a thought of God (like light­ning) flashes in his minde, presently he 1 He neuer, or vnwil­lingly thinks of God. quencheth it, as being a most vnwel­come and burdensome thought vnto him: therefore saith Dauid; The wic­ked is so proud, he careth not for God: nei­ther Psal. 10. 4. is God in all his thoughts: Nay, God himself is so little thought on, by them, that they will willingly thinke of no­thing, that might bring GOD into their thoughts: as namely, Gods great works of his wonderfull Iudgements: [Page 101] of whom the same prophet saith, in the same place, Thy Iudgements are farre a­boue, out of his sight. As if hee had said, Psal. 10. 5. hee labours to set them farre from the eye of his minde, that hee may neuer haue occasion to thinke of them, nor on God by them. That this is true for his thoughts', I haue endeuored thus to proue, by Gods owne testimonies, be­cause thoughts cannot be discerned by 2 He neuer speakes of God vnlesse it be to a­buse his maiestie. man. But alas, for the second, that is, for his wordes, that's too apparant in the sight of all men. For obserue it, and you shall neuer see a wicked man, by his good will haue God in his mouth, (vnlesse it bee to abuse his name, by swearing or blasphemie) nor willingly doth he heare any other man talke, or discourse largely of God, or of his great­nesse and his Iustice; but such talke is tedious & combersome vnto him: and if hee cannot breake it off with other discourse, then he sits as mute as a fish, and inwardly either frets with anger, or is tormented with feare. All this is true in Faelix the Gouernour: who whilst [Page 102] Paul discoursed of righteousnesse, tempe­rance, and Iudgement to come: The Text saith, in the meane time, he trembled.

And for the third, we see daily wic­ked men, endure not Gods presence 3 They loue not the word nor Sacraments. in the Church: for nothing is more troublesome vnto thē, then many Ser­mons, often praying, and much recei­uing of the Sacrament: & therfore they neuer come to the Church, nor receiue ofter then the Lawe layes vpon them: but further then that, as the Psalmist saith; they neuer call vpon God. But as Psal. 14. 4. 4 They wish Christ would neuer co [...]e to iudge­ment. for the last, that they feare and abhorre aboue all, they wish in their hart it may neuer be. And therfore S. Paul makes it a token of a true beleeuer, and a holy man, to loue, and looke for the appearing of Iesus Christ. Whereupon it followeth, 2. Tim, 4. 8. that euē so it is a signe of a wicked man, to feare the last iudgement, & to wish it might neuer be: And when it comes in­deed, & they see they cannot escape it, what thē do they? Euen cry to the moun­taines, fall vpon vs: and to the hils, couer Reuel. 6. 16, vs, and hide vs: from what? from the pre­sence [Page 103] of God: so fearefull and so hatefull is Gods prsence to a sinfull man.

Besides these, there is another way, whereby God sheweth his presence: Extraordi­nary appari­tiōs of Gods maiestie, a sinfull man cannot en­dure. and that is, by extraordinary reuelation of his glory immediately: which was vsual in the old Testament, as here to the Prophet, but now is not to bee ex­pected. But how terrible that is to the sinfull nature of man, appeares in this place: for if the Prophet a most holy man, whose conscience accused him, but of a fewe and small sinnes, yet thus cryes out, amazed & affrighted, at the reuelation of some part of Gods glory: alas, how would they be terrified with it, whose consciences are burdened with great and grieuous sinnes, & that with­out repētance? Thus we see the ground of his reason, how true it is, that a man in his sin, cannot cheerefully come, nor boldly stand in Gods presence. The The first vse for Mini­sters: Ergo. let them not enter into. vse of this Doctrine: First of all, let vs see the monstrous presumption of such minister as dare venture rashly into the ministery, to tread vpō the holy groūd [Page 104] of God, with vncleane feete; to handle that calling in their sins. the holy things of God with vnwashen hands: For what is it to enter into the Ministery, but to enter into the chamber of presence of the great King? and should not a man look about him, For it is into Gods pre­sence cham­ber. afore he come there? Therefore if God rebuked Moses, for stepping too hasti­ly towardes the Bushe, where his pre­sence is, and saide; Come not too neere, for Exod. 3. [...]. the place wher thoustādest is holy ground: then how will God rebuke and checke the consciences of such carnall men, as carelesly & carnally rush into the Pul­pit, and to Gods holy Table, where God is present, in a farre more excel­lent manner then hee was in the Bush? And if they bee so to be blamed, who Nor come to doe the duty of that calling with­out repen­tance, and holy prepa­ration. enter into this calling without feare and reuerence, then how much more faulty are they, who beeing Ministers, dare venture to preach, or minister the holy Sacraments, without holy and priuate preparation, & sanctification of them­selues: but rush vpon them, as vpon common & prophane actions? Where­as [Page 105] God is present there, in a most holy and glorious maner: these men sure wil say, the Prophet heere was of too nice a conscience: but fearefully and terribly shall God appeare at last vnto such men, as care not how they appeare in his holy presence.

Secondly, this sheweth the reason of the practise of al Christian churches: 2 [...]rgo, They are to pray before and after sermon. who vse to pray before the Sermon & after: namely, not for Decorum one­ly, & to grace the action, but to sanctifie and to humble our selues, because then we come before Gods presence: they ther­fore doe not thinke reuerently enough of God, and his presence, who doe by their practise in any sort, make way to the contrary.

Thirdly, we may here learne, the pit­tifull The 3 Vse. Ergo, such men are ex­treamly des­perate who dare come to preach & minister sa­craments, in their sinner. case of those ministers, who are so presumptuous, as to exercise that holy function, & yet remain [...] their sinnes without repentance: what doe these men? they approach to the burning Bush, with their shooes on their feete: that is, into Gods presence in their sinnes: what [Page 106] shall come of it in the end? surely, that burning fire shal consume thē: the least sinne, & smallest negligences affrigh­ted this holy Prophet, when he should goe into Gods presence: But these men Psal. 50. 16. dare come into the Sanctuarie of God; yea, dare take Gods word in their mouth's, and yet hate to bee reformed, and doe cast the glorious Word of God behinde their backes, which they preach to others with their mouthes: these men may wonder at this holy Prophets nicenes, or else al the world may wonder at their prophanenesse. A little pollution of his lippes, feared him to come into Gods presence: but these dare doe it, with eies, eares, lippes, feet, hands, hart; and all polluted: their eyes polluted, with carelesse looking at all vanities: their eares with hearing: and their lips with speaking, wanton & wicked talk: their feete, with running into wicked company: their hands, with practizing and their harts, with deuising and con­senting Such mens labours are fruitlesse. to all wickednesse.

This is the cause, why the labours of [Page 107] such men are almost vnprofitable: be­cause they dare come into Gods pre­sence in their sinnes. In many places of our land, ther is by Gods blessing much teaching, yet there is little reformation, in the liues of the most: but contrari­wise, some fal to Atheisme: some to Pa­pisme: some into foule sinnes, not to be named amongst Ghristians.

Where is the cause? surely not in the And their leosenesse doth more hurt; then their Doc­trine good. Gospell: nor in our doctrine, nor in the teaching of it; but one very principall cause is, many Ministers come into Gods presence, vnsanctified, & in their sins: not caring how loosely they liue, in the face of their people: and therfore God in iustice, thogh he instantly smite not them, with visible vengeance for their presumption: yet he smites the By Gods sea­cret iudge­ment. people, with spirituall blindnesse, that they regard not their Doctrine, but looke at their liues, and doe rather fol­low the prophanenesse of the one, then the holinesse of the other. Ministers are such, in whome God will be sancti­fied, [Page 108] therefore because they doe not so, but dishonour him, by cōming into his presence in their sinnes: therefore hee cannot abide them, nor giue any bles­sing to their labours.

All ministers therfore, as they would see any fruite of their Ministerie, let them first sanctifie themselues, & clense their hearts by repentance, afore they presume, to stand vp to rebuke sinne in others: else let them not thinke, that Good words are vaine, where there is no good life. their golden wordes shall doe so much good, as their leaden liues shall doe hurt: and they may happe to confirme men, that already are conuerted, but hardly shall any such men, conuert any soules from Poperie or prophanesse. And it is a vaine conceite for men to imagine, ther is any force in eloquence, or humane learning, to ouerthrow that sin in others, which ruleth and raigneth in themselues. Our Church, and all re­formed churches, may make vse of this doctrine: for it is the glory of a Church to haue their doctrine powerfull, & ef­fectuall for the winning of soules, ther­fore [Page 109] it cōcerneth them, to take order, as well that their ministers be godly men, as good Schollers, & their liues inoffensiue, as wel as their doctrine sound: or else they will find in woful experience, that they pull down as much with the one hand, as they build vp with the other.

But most neerely this doctrine tou­cheth ministers themselues: who must know, their case is most feareful of all mens, if they come into Gods presence, in their prophanenesse: for as no man is more honourable, then a learned and holy Minister: so none more contemp­tible in this world, none more misera­ble for that to come, then he that by his loose & lewde life, doth scandalize his doctrine: and let him assure himselfe, that for his presumption, in rushing in­to Gods presence in his sinnes, he shall in this world, be cast out as vnsauory salt Math. 5. 13. and troden downe of men, with the foot of contempt: and in the world to come, he shall aboue all men cry out, in most ex­treame torment of conscience, W [...] is me, that my eyes must see the King and Lord [Page 119] of hostes and so because hee would not in this world, come into Gods presence in sanctification and holinesse: he shal therefore in feare and horror, be haled into the presence of Gods glorie, at the last day: there to receiue the iust sen­tence of his condemnation.

Lastly, all painfull and godly Mini­sters may receiue comfort, not to bee The fourth vse for Mi­nisters: Ergo Good mini­sters must not fly from Gods pre­sence be­cause of their sins, but re­pent: and so approach to his dutie. discouraged or driuen from Gods pre­sence, because of their corruptions or infirmities, for wee see it was the Pro­phets, case: but let them still approach in feare and reuerence, and be so farre from being driuen from their duty, be­cause they being sinfull men, dare not come into Gods presence without much feare: as let them contrariwise be assured, that the more they tremble at Gods presence here, the lesse shall they feare it at the last day: and when pro­phane and vngodly men, who in this world feared not to stand in Gods pre­sence in their horrible sins, shall cry to the Mountaines, fall vpon vs, and hilles couer vs, and hide vs from the presence of [Page 111] God: then such ministers as in this world in feare and trembling, and alwaies in repentance, did approach into Gods presence: shall then looke vp, and lift vp their heads, & shall say to the holy An­gels, & all the powers of heauen, helpe vs, and hasten vs to come into the glori­ous presence of our God and Sauiour.

And thus we see the manisold vse of this doctrine to our Church and mini­sterie. The second vse against the Papists.

Secondly, In asmuch as here the pro­phet in a conscience of his corruptions, feareth and cryeth out at the least appa­rition of Gods glory.

The vanitie and false dealing of the Ergo, The apparitions of God, and christ, which they make so ordinary, are but col­lusions. Church of Rome, is here discoured, in whose Legēds & stories of their Saints, nothing is more common then appari­tions from heauen, of Saints depa [...]ted: of glorious Angels, of the virgin Mary, (and that so familiarly, as sometime she sang with thē in their Cell, kissed some of them, and let them sucke her brests). Nay, of God himselfe: and especially of our Sauiour Christ Iesus: who they [Page 112] say, appeared (I knowe not how oft) to one man: namely, to Saint Francis: and appeared as he was crucified with his woundes, and imprinted those woundes of his, in Francis his body, which they say he bare all his life, and that they bled whensoeuer hee would suffer them, which he alwayes did on Good Fryday, that hee might be like to Christ. Thus, &c many more such, may yousee in that fabulous & blasphemous book, of the conformities of S. Francis.

But for the matter: Are apparitions from heauen so ordinary in the popish Church? how then came it to passe, that the greatest and holiest men in the olde Testament, were so amezed at the ve­ry apparition but of an Angell: as wee may see in the whole course of the Storie? Some ranne away, and hidde themselues: some couered their fa­ces, some fell flat on the grounde: and the Prophets heere cryed out; Woe is mee, I am vndone: my eyes haue seene the King and Lorde of Hostes. But in the Church of Rome, [Page 113] looke the stories, that Saint or Monke is no body that hath not had some ap­parition: either of the Virgin Marie, or some of the Apostles, or an Angel, or Christ Iesus appearing and talking with them: and yet alas, Peter, lames, Gala. 2. 9. Mat. 17. 6. & Luke 9. 33. and Iohn, those three great pillars, they were as good as beside themselues at the appearing of a little part of the glorie of Christ in his transfiguration.

Either therefore must it followe that these men haue no sinne in them, which dare and can behold Gods glo­ry so easily, and so ordinarily, (which is impossible): or rather which indeed is truth, it appeares that these are but de­ceitfull fancies and forgeries of their owne deuise, to deceiue the world, and to magnifie themselues before the eyes Reasons i [...] 1. Appariti­ons of God cannot be mores dom­mon in the new, then they were in the old Tes­tament. of the common people: for it is first of all most false, that apparitions are so common as they make them, for if they were, then are they more ordinary in the newe Testament then in the Olde. For whereas the Scripture hath one, their Legions haue twenty: & whereas [Page 114] one, namely, Saint Paul, was once rapt into heauen, they haue 20. that were rapt thither: And as that is false, so is it 2. Cor. 12. 2. No man in his flesh can endure gods glory. impossible that any man cloathed with flesh can endure an extraordinary ap­parition of Gods glorie, without ex­treame amazement, as is plaine herd in the Prophet: who I hope was as holy a man, as the holiest monke that euer was. I haue noted this, that young Di­uines may be occasioned to looke a litle into their fabulous legends, that so they may discouer the false trickes, and iug­ling castes of that religion: which euill shiftes it needed not, if it were of God.

Thirdly, the people may here learne; 3. Vse, to the people: they may see Gods merey to them, in teaching them by men like themselues, and not by apparitions from hea­uen. First, in that Gods presence is so glorious and fearefull to mans nature, how mer­cifully God hath delt with them, in teaching them not by himself, or by his Angels from heauē, which they could neuer endure; but by men, who are like themselues: and how vaine and fond these men are, who would bee taught from heauen, & not by men, who are so [Page 115] full of wants. In the olde Testament, when the people receiued the law from Deut. 5. 25 26, 27. 28. Gods owne mouth, it is saide, they ran away, and cryed out, Why should we die? if we heare the voyce of God any more wee shall dye: for what flesh euer heard the voice of the liuing God & liued therefore they said to Moses: Goe thou neare and heare, al that the Lord shal say, & declare thou vnto vs▪ what God saith to thee, & we wilheare it, & doe it. And then saith the text, ye Lord said I heard the words of this people, they haue said well in al that they haue spoken. And so, from that day for­ward, God ordinarily taught his church by men like themselues: & we see, yt the beginning of it was not in iudgement, but in mercie vnto them. It is therefore the dutie of all men, both to acknow­ledge this mercy of God, in due thank­fulnesse, and withall to remember, when they see infirmities in Ministers, that they are but men, and that if they had not the Ministery of men, howe hard it would, goe with them: consi­dering, that the least measure of Gods [Page 116] owne presence, cannot be endured by any man.

2. Inasmuch as gods presence, is so glo­rious 2. Vse. Ergo, they must prepare thē. selues be­fore they come to the word or Sa­craments. in it self, and fearefull to our na­ture, al men are taught to prepare them­selues by holy prayer, by humisiation, and confession of their sinnes and vn­worthinesse, afore they come to Gods word or sacraments: for they come at that time into Gods presence: they there­fore are not to come in their securitie, nor in their ordinarie sinnes vnrepen­ted of, least God strike their conscien­ces, with a sence of his fearefull displea­sure: & make them cry out, vpon farre greater cause, then here the Propet did.

Thirdly and lastly, wee learne here the different natures and properties of 3. Vse see the different natures of sinne, and holinesse. Sin drawes a man from Gods pre­sence. sinne and holinesse: Sinne, euen the least sinne: nay, a very sinfulnes of na­ture makes a man afraid of Gods pre­sence: That sinne vnrepented of doth so, appeares in Adam, who as in his in­tegrity, he spoke & conuersed euen in a familiar sort with God: so no sooner [Page 117] had he finned, but he ranne from God, and hid himselfe: & that euen the least sinnes not repented of, doe so also, ap­peares in this Prophet, who beeing a holy man, yet his conscience being pri­uie to it self of some small omissions or negligēces in his calling, he crieth out, he is vndone, because he seeth the Lord of hosts. But contrariwise, the state of per­fect Holinesse inuites a man into Gods pre­sence. holinesse, & the want of all sinne, makes a man bold in Gods presence, and rather desirous then afraid to be­hold Gods glory, which shall bee most apparant at the last day: for when the wicked shal desire rather to be couered Reue. 6. 16. Luke 21. 28. Iob. 19. 25 26, 27. with the hilles, and ground to dust by the mountaines, then to appeare before the face of God: then shal the godly whose holinesse shal then bee perfect, looke vp and lift vp their heads, because their re­demption is so nigh. And Iob testifieth of himselfe, that hee knoweth his redee­mer liueth, and that hee shall stand be­fore him, & looke vpon him with his eyes. Thus as guiltinesse driues a man from the kings presence, but innocency makes [Page 118] him bold before him: So sinfulnesse makes a man auoid Gods presence, but holinesse makes him drawe neare vnto God, and to reioyce in his presence.

Then for a conclusion of this point, Vse. Ergo, if a man would haue bold­nesse with God, he must be a holy man. let all men heare learne the way to true courage and boldnesse before GOD: namely, to repent dayly of their sinnes, and labour to growe in true holinesse: wealth nor wit, learning nor authori­tie can do this for thee, but onely a good conscience, which must bee made good by grace and by repentance, then shalt thou reioice in Gods presēce in this world, and delight, to thinke of God, to speake of God, to pray vnto him, to meete him in his word and sacraments, and at the last day shalt thou stand with con­fidence before the throne of his glory.

Hitherto of the feare and astonish­ment of the Prophet, and of the causes thereof. Now followeth his consolation.

Then flewe one of the Seraphims, &c.

In these two verses is laid downe the 2. Generall points: His conso­lation, second generall point: namely, the con­solation of the Prophet: concerning [Page 119] which, there are two points in the text: wherein are 2. points. 1. Circum­stances of it. 2. The ground of of it.

  • 1. the ground and matter of his consola­tion, that is the forgiuenesse of his sinnes.
  • 2 Diuers circumstances of that con­solation.
    • 1 The time. Then.
    • 2 The minister by whom it was done:
      Circumstan­ces are ma­ny.
      an Angell, one of the Seraphims.
    • 3 The manner how he did it, spee­dily, He flewe.
    • 4 The instrument or outward signe a Coale from the altar.
    • 5 The outward action or applicati­on of it: He touched his lippes.

The matter of the consolation is last in order. Let vs therefore first speake of the Circumstances.

The first circumstance, is the time 1. Circum­stance, the time that is after his feare. when this Prophet was comforted and raised frō his feare. Then saith the text: that is, after his feare and astonishment, but not afore. Thus dealt God alwaies with all his Saints, he bestoweth no gra­ces on thē pertaining to saluation, but after he hath by some meanes or other [Page 120] brought thē to true humiliation in them­selues, Doct. No consolation but after humiliation. and to sorrow for their sinnes: Humiliation is the preparatiue for grace: for when by sight and sense of their sinnes, and their owne misery by sinne, he hath euen driuen them quite out of themselues, finding nothing in themselues, but cause of feare and asto­nishment, then powres hee the oyle of grace, and of sweete comfort into their hearts, & refresheth their weary soules with the deawe of his mercy: this point needes no further proofe, for looke in­to the Scriptures, & we shal finde, God neuer called any man to the state of grace, or to any notable worke or fun­ction in his Church, but hee first hum­bled them, and then brought them out of al conceit with themselues, and then wrought in them, and by them, his won­derfull workes.

The vse of this doctrine, is first of all to teach all men, to esteeme aright of the Vse 1. To al men: Ergo, esteeme of afflictions, namely, as afflictions that God layeth vpon them in this world: commonly men take them impatiently, & our nature grud­grudgeth [Page 121] against them: but let a Chri­stian man consider with himselfe, how God hath alwaies dealt with his chil­dren, and he hath cause not to thinke so: for doth God lay some great affliction on thee? it may be he hath some mighty worke of his grace to worke in thee, or som great work of mercie to bewroght by thee in his church, and hereby prepa­reth thee for the same. Say therefore Psal: 39. 9. with the holy Prophet; I helde my tongue ô Lord, and spake nothing, because it was thy doing: and what God may in­tend in his so doing to thee, thou canst not tell: and therefore in silence, and pa­tience possesse thy soule.

Againe, here is a comfort to all such 2 To men di­stressed in conscience, that their state is not desperate as they Ima­gine but most com­fortable as are distressed in mind, in sense of their finnes, and sight of Gods wrath: their state is not miserable, much lesse des­perate, for they are in the high way to grace and fauour. God iustifieth not, but him that repents: God exalts not, but him that is humbled: God comforts not, but him that is distressed: God hath mer­cie on none, but such as both knowne [Page 122] and feele they want it: and knowe al­so, that they knowe not where to haue it, but at his hands. Happie there­fore is that soule, that feeles the waight and burden of sin, for to him wil Christ bring most ease and comfort. Gods Mi­nisters therefore are hereby to comfort distressed consciences, to assure them, that if with this Prophet they bee so deepely touched with sight of their sins, and Gods iustice, as that they cry, Woe is me, I am vndone. Then, euē Then, are they most capable of comfort, and best pre­pared to receiue it, as here it sell out to the holy Prophet. Thirdly, here is the Vse 3. The way to get excellent graces at Cods band, is to labour to feele the wan. of them. way taught vs how to attaine to any ex­cellēt graces of God, either for our own saluation, or the good of the Church, namely to labour for a sencible feeling of the want of them in our selues: for God vseth to bestowe no gifts on any man, but such as do in humilitie & low-linesse, confesse to God, & acknowledge in themselues, the want of them. So the blessed Ʋirgin singeth, God filleth the Luke. 1. 53. 2 Psal. 107. 9. hungry with good things, but the rich hee [Page 123] sendes emptie away: And so the Psalmist, God satisfieth the hungry soule, and filleth the emptie soule with goodnesse. So then if thou be rich in thy conceits, God hath not for thee: but if thou be hungry, he is readie to fill thee with good things: and dost thou acknowledge thy soule emp­tie, then behold treasures of goodnesse, to feede and fill thee: and art thou cast downe with the Prophet, and is thy soule emptie of hope, and fraught with feare, then behold, euen then, God and his An­gels ready to raise thee vp, & to fill thee with consolation. Thus much for the time of his consolation: the minister, by whom was,

One of the Seraphims.

The 2. circumstance of his consola­tion 2. Circum­stance of the Minister An Angell, a Se­raphim. is the Minister by whom it was done: An angel. One of the Seraphims: that is, an Angell of that order so called: out of which we learne; Doct 1. Ergo there are se­ueral degrees of Angels, that wee knowe not.

First, that there are diuers degrees and seuerall orders of Angels, though wee knowe not the true distinction thereof: [Page 124] nor thinke it lawful to imagine them to be 9. nor to set them down particularly, as the Church of Rome doth, who make many of their owne deuises, which they cal traditiōs, of equal authority with the scriptures. Secondly, that these holy An­gels are the glorious guard of God, and Doct. 2. That they are Gods guard. doe continually stand about the throne of his glory, & attend his holy wil, both in heauen and in earth.

Thirdly, that they are also by the Psal. 34. Heb. 1. Doct. 3. that they are the guard of Gods chil­dren. merciful appointment of God, the guard of Gods children, and ministring spirits sent out, as it were with a commission, for the good of the elect. All these points, because they are plaine in the scripture, and do lesse cōcerne our general scope, which is touching the Ministery, I passe them ouer.

Fourthly, here it is apparāt, that as the Ange's are sent out for the helpe & ser­uice Doct. That they haue speciall charge and care of god­ly ministers. of the elect: so especially of Gods mini­sters, as is plaine in this place, where the Prophet being afrighted, a holy Angel is ready to giue him comfort: and so ouer the whole course of the Prophets: and [Page 125] at this day, their protection, and com­fortable assistance, is no lesse present to the godly Ministers of the newe Testa­ment, though not in such sensible signes, and such visible manner, as in the olde: for if they bee ministring spirits, sent out for the good of them which shall bee saued, howe much more for their good, which shall bee both saued them­selues, and saue others also.

A doctrine of great comfort, and Vse to Gods ministers. I let them be content with their calling though it be full of cros­ses and con­tempts for it is honoured of the Au­gels aboue others. much good vse to all Ministers: who first of all may here learne contentment intheir calling: for howsoeuer no calling hath more crosses, so none againe hath more comfort: and howsoeuer none bee more disgraced by euillmen, yet none is more honoured by the holy Angels: and howsoeuer in this world they aboue a­ny calling, are seruāts to all men, yet none hath the seruice & attendance of Angels so much as they: for though we haue them not to helpe vs to do the outward actions of our ministery with vs, or for vs, (as some popish Doctors teach, that in their Masse, A men is not said to one [...] [Page 124] [...] [Page 125] [Page 126] collect, because the Angels say A men to it) yet doubtlesse they are presēt alwaies, as at all holy exercises and lawfull acti­ons, so especially at the publike seruice of God, performed by the Ministers: and beside that, they are witnesses thereto, and of the paines, and diligence, and faithfulnesse of a good Minister, they also do Minister vnto them oftentimes, bodily strength, and assistance, & many comforts: in their troublesome trauels, which they know not how by any natu­rall meanes they come vnto them. And as this Doctrine doth thus yeeld them 2 Ergo, Let them haue courage, for though men be against them, An­gels are with them. contentment against the contempt, so al­so courage against the danger of this cal­ling. For what though thou hast migh­tie men of this world against thee, when thou hast angels for thee? & what though thou fightest against principalities and powers, when thou hast Cherubins, and Seraphims on thy side? Godly Ministers haue many enemies, but if by the eye of faith, they can see as well who are with them, as with the eye of reason who are a­gainst them, they will confesse with Eli­sha, [Page 127] there are more with vs, then against vs. The stories of all ages doe affirme, and the cōfortable experience of these daies of ours doth verifie the truth hereof. Ministers that liue in places very pro­phane, or very popish, it is admirable to see how many daungers they haue es­caped, and plottes they haue auoided, which by their enemies, (or rather the enemies of their Doctrine) haue bone laide for their liues: which their deliue­rance, and many other comforts in their Ministries, whence are they but from Gods protection, by the ministry of his 2 Questions Angels. 1. Ergo, Whēce is it that Angels attend mini­sters more then other men. Ans. 2. reasons.

Afore we leaue this point, two que­stions may be asked, not amisse briefely to be resolued.

First if any aske, whence comes it that Angels performe more seruice to good Mlnisters then to other men: I an­swere, the reason is partly from God, 1 From God' he will haue it so, because they worke his worke more then other cal­lings. partly from the Angels: first God hath a principall care of them aboue other men, because they worke his worke a­boue all other callings: for their labours [Page 128] immediately cōcerne the good of mens soules: whereas others do first concerne the body, and consequently the soule: therefore, whereas he hath giuen his An­gels charge ouer all his elect, to keepe them Psal. 91. 11. 12. in all their good waies, they haue a speciall charge doubtlesse ouer al godly and faith­full Ministers, whose waies are Gods in a speciall manner.

Againe, Angels themselues as they 2 From the Angels themselues. willingly performe any seruice to the Church, or to any part thereof, so most willingly of all are they imployed for the good of godly Ministers, and that for two causes.

First, because they are their fellow-la­bourers, both for that yt Angels & good Because they are fellow­labourers. 1 Cor. 4. 2. Heb. 1. 1 [...] ▪ Mal. 27. Reue. 2. &. 3, Chap. Ministers are both called Gods embassa­dors, & Gods own seruants or officers, in a more peculiar manner then any other calling: & for that their seruice is so like, that their names are common, one to the other. Angels being called Ministers, and Ministers Angels, as though they were almost all one.

Secondly, because the Ministers du­tie [Page 129] is, to conuert & saue soules, being a Because they conuert soules, which delighteth the Angels aboue any in this world. Heb. 1. 14. Luke 15. 10. worke which (next to the glorifying of God, and doings his wil) the Angels doe take most delight in aboue any other: for if they be sent out for the good of them which shal be saued, how much more wil­lingly for their good, by whom they are saued, which shal be saued? & if the An­gels reioice at the cōuersion of a sinner▪ sure­ly they much loue him, & desire to doe him good, by whom the sinner is con­uerted: and in these respects, that An­gels and Ministers haue the same names: and are both imployed in the same great worke; namely, doing good to the elect.

Therefore is it, that the Angel calles himselfe S. Iohn the Euangelists fellow in the Reuelation: If then they be fellowes, Reuel. 19. 10. & 22. 9. euē fellow-seruants, & fellow-laborers, in a more special maner then any other, what maruel though the angels be most willingly imployed, in doing any ser­uice of helpe or comfort to godly Mi­nisters.

In the second place, If any aske, if it be so, then what duties are Ministers [Page 130] to performe to angels, for this their so 2. Question: what duties then are good Mini­sters to per­forme to Angels. Not wor­ship them so as the Pa­pists doe. carefull seruice, & especiall attendance vpon them, aboue other men?

A Papast would answere; Ministers must therefore worshippe them, and keepe their fasting, & Holy-dayes, and say their seruice, and pray vnto them, as to their keepers and Mediators. But alas, cannot the Kings Messenger or Officer be honoured, vnlesse he be set vpon the Kings throne? will nothing serue him, but the Crowne and Scepter? so cannot Angels be honoured, vnlesse they be made Gods, or Sauiours, or medi­ators? But I answere therefore, wee dare not go so farre, least we remember the seruant so much, that we forget the ma­ster: but rather we answere thus: seeing angels are thus seruiceable to Gods mi­nisters, As all men should ther­fore honour that calling. it should first of all, teach al men to honour that calling, with all due re­uerence: For they cannot but please the angels, in honouring good Mini­sters, whom they esteeme their fellowes. 1. So Mini­sters should labour to be faithfull in their cal­ling.

Secondly, it should teach all Mini­sters, not to content themselues with [Page 131] the name and title, but to labour to bee good and faithfull. For so doing, they are fellowes to the Angels, and it is a disgrace to the Angels, when those that are their fellowes are vnfaithfull.

And it should further teach them, 2. To adorn it with a ho­ly life. to adorne their Calling with a holy life, for as sinne is that, that grieues the an­gels, & driues them away, so it is grace and holinesse, which makes them de­light in the fellowship of men.

And it may also encourage any man, 3. To be painfull in their calling. to take paines in that holy Calling, wherein hee is sure to haue Gods angels, in a speciall manner to attende him, to assist him, to protect him, and to bee a witnesse of his faithfulnesse: and who would not worke cheerefully in that labour, wherein hee hath the Angels to bee in a sort fellow-workers with him?

To doe these three duties, is to ho­nour good angels: and that Minister Thus to do, is to honour them. that conscionably performeth them, the angels will take themselues suffici­ently honoured of that man.

[Page 132] And if beside this honour, we would And if a Mi­nister would reioyce thē, let him la­bour seri­ously, so to preach as he may winne soules. reioyce Gods angels, and minister matter of ioy vnto them, then in the fourth place, let all Ministers propounde to themselues aboue al things, the conversi­on of soules, rather then their own praise, or liuing, or pleasing of men, and so endeuour it both in teaching, and all their other courses, that the angels may see it, and bee witnesse of it: for if they reioyce at the conversion of a sinner, (as Christ saith they doe, then those men make them oftest reioyce, which doe most seriously aime at the conversion of sinners.

And thus we see, both the seruice of angels to Gods Ministers, and the du­ties they are to performe to them in that regard. The due consideration of this point, may raise the world to a better conceit of this Calling, and per­swade fathers to dedicate their sonnes to it, and stirre vp young students to conse­crate themseluest hereto, & turne their studies to that ende: for no man in no calling hath so speciall attendance, and [Page 134] assistance of Gods angels, as godly Mi­nisters haue: At least, if it worke not this in the world, yet it may yeeld com­fort & contentment to all faithfull Mi­nisters in their painfull calling.

But let vs see how the angel perfor­med his seruice to the Prophet: not vn­willingly, not lingeringly, but speedily: so saith the Text.

He flewe.

Which is not so to bee vnderstood, 3. Circum­stance, the maner: He flewe. as though the angels had wings: for they haue no corporall nor sensible bo­dyes, but spirituall and insensible substan­ces, the actions whereof are performed with such nimblenesse and agilitie, as That is rea­dily, speedi­ly, willingly. can not fall within the compasse of out­ward sense. But the Phrase is vsed for our capacities, to shew how readily and speedily the angel went about to minister comfort to the Prophet. For as nothing moueth so quickly to our sense, as doth the creature that flyeth: and as wee say, that man doth flye about his businesse, [Page 134] which doth it quickly and diligently: so here the holy Ghost sets downe the willingnesse and quicknesse of the an­gel, to comfort this holy Prophet, and to doe the will of God. Where we learne;

First, what excellent seruants of God Doct. 1. So what excel­lent ser­uants of God, Angels are. the holy angels bee, which so readily, willingly, and speedily execute the will of their Lord. This must teach all gods seruants to doe the like, and to imitate thē in this excellent obedience: And the rather, because wee pray dayly to God; Thy will be done in earth as it is in heauen. In earth of vs, as it is in hea­uen The fourth petition. of the holy angels: But they doe it most cheerfully, and without all lin­gring, therefore so ought we. Magi­strates in their places, and Ministers in Vse, we must so serue Cod in our places. theirs, and euery man in his function, is to apply this to himselfe, and to bee stirred vp thereby to a cheerfulnesse & quicknesse in their duties: for therein they resemble the blessed angels, & then their deodes accord wity their prayer: but contrariwise, he that doth his dutie vn­willingly, and vnreadly, is like the Di­uel; [Page 135] which indeed doth Gods will, & yet against his will. and surely vnto such o­bedience there belongeth no reward. But as God loueth a cheerfull giuer, so doubtlesse loues hee a cheerfull worker. 2. Corinth. 9. 7. Doct. 2.

Secondly, we see here how great loue angels beare vnto Gods children, espe­cially vnto godly Ministers, how wil­lingly What good friends they are to good men, especi­ally to good Ministers. they are imployed to doe them good. Willingnesse and readines to doe good to any man, must needes come from loue: and yet alas all men, euen the best, and all Ministers, euen the best, are creatures farre inferior to the an­gels.

Here Magistrates & Ministers, must 1. Vse. Ergo, superiors loue their inferiors, and con­temne them not. learne to be farre from contempt of their inferiours: and to doe their duties of ruling and teaching carefully, though the people bee farre their infriors: it is the nature of loue, to make any man doe seruice most willingly, to him that hee loues, though he be farre meaner then himselfe.

If therefore Princes loue their sub­iects, they will not spare any care, cost, And shew it by doing them good. [Page 136] nor paines, nay they will reioyce to doe them good, and they will labour to bee like the angels, who are farre greater then men, as they are then their sub­iects.

And if Ministers loue their people, they will forget their owne dignitie, which oft-times they might stand vp­on, and will make themselues euen ser­uants to all, that they may winne some.

And seeing angels doe flie so fast to 2. Vse. Ergo, Ministers must. giue helpe and comfort to good Mini­sters: this must teach them further. 1. Corinth. 9. 19. 1. Be faith­full.

First, euery one to labour to bee a good Minister, for then are they sure of the loue of angels, and then most wil­lingly doe the angels any seruice to them. Againe, let it teach them to flye as fast to the discharge of their duties to Gods 2. Painfull. Church, as the angels flye to doe them seruice, so shal God angels thinke their diligence and carefull seruice well be­stowed vpon them.

Lastly, this diligence of the angels, & their willingnesse, proceeding from loue, must stirre vp al Christians, to per­forme [Page 137] all duties of godlinesse to God, 3. Vse. Ergo, al men serue God cheere­fully: If wee be like An­gels, therein we shal euen be like them in glory. & of loue vnto his Church, with alacri­tie and cheerfulnesse. So doe Gods an­gels; we looke to be like the angels in glo­ry, in the world to come: then bee like the angels in diligence, loue and faithful­nes in this world. The Wise man saith, Hee that is slothfull in his businesse is good for nothing: but the diligent man shall stand Pro. 22 29. before the King. And surely, hee that is willing & diligent in the duties of Chri­stianitie, shall stand before the King of kings in heauen. And let this suffice for the Angels seruice, and his diligence in his seruice. Now let vs see what instru­ment the Angel vsed.

A coale from the Altar.

The fourth Circumstance of this 4. Circum­stance: the Instrument a Coale of fire. consolation, is the Instrument which it pleased God, the angel should vse to minister comfort to the Prophet, a strange instrument for so great a work: A strange and won­derfull meanes. A coale of fire. Here let humane reason hide it selfe, and wordly wisedome bee confounded, to see the wonderfull works [Page 138] of the Lord: God could haue healed the Prophets infirmities, and giuen him comfort against his feare & courage in his calling, without meanes, but hee will And which seemes con­trarie to reason. vse meanes: and what? a weake meanes: nay, a meanes that seemes contrary: A coale of fire must touch his lippes: that which in all reason would haue made him speake worse, by Gods appoint­ment and the power of his word, shall make him speake better. Out of which practise of God, we learn many points.

First, see how GOD magnifieth Doct. r. see God com­mendeth the vse of meanes. meanes: hee can worke without them, and so hee did in the Creation, giuing light to the worlde, diuers dayes before there was Sunne: but since the order of Gen. 1. from 4. to 17. nature was established, hee generally vseth meanes, not onely in his ordinary, but euen in his miraculous actions: and Seeing him­selfe alwaies vseth them. though he vse not alwayes the ordinary and direct meanes: yet meanes he gene­rally vseth, though they seeme contrary: as heere in this place; and the same wil be found true in almost al the miracles, both of the Old and New Testament.

[Page 139] This therefore commends vnto all Vse Ergo, we are to vse the meanes ap­pointed in all our pur­poses. men, the vse of such good meanes, as Gods prouidence hath ordained of any duties, or effecting of any thing, that doth belong vnto vs to doe: and not to depend vpon immediate helpes from Heauen, as many fonde and fantasticall men doe, who are therfore oftentimes iustly forsaken of God, and left desti­tute of all helpe; and so exposed to shame and reproach.

Secondly, see here the mighty pow­er of Gods ordinance, how it appeareth Doct 2. see how Gods power doth shew it selfe in weaknes. in weakenesse: such are all his great workes. In the Creation, hee brought light out of darknesse. In our Redempti­on, hee brought vs life out of death. In our conuersions, he workes vpon vs by his word, & by it hee drawes vs to him, which in al reason would driue vs from him: and by it confounds the wisedome of the worlde, which is starke foolish­nesse to the wisedome of the world.

And so here, hee cleanseth the Pro­phet by a Coale of fire: which would [Page 140] rather defile him, and seasoneth his mouth with it, which in reason should haue burned him: so great, so ad­mirable, and so powerfull are the or­dinances of God, though they seeme so contrary, or so weake in themselues, or in their meanes.

Let this teach all men not to con­temne the Sacraments, though the out­ward Vse. Ergo, God can worke by his word, and sacraments, and mans Ministerie, though ne­uer so base. Elements, Bread, Wine, and Wa­ter, be weake and common, and dead creatures in themselues: nor the Mi­nisterie of the Word, though it be exer­cised by a weake man, mortall & mise­rable as others are: for that God, which can season the Prophets mouth, and clense his heart by a coale of fire, no maruell though hee worke vppon the consciences of men, by his word and Sa­craments.

And againe, when we see Grace and Holinesse conueyed into mens hearts by the Word and Sacraments; let vs learne, not to ascribe it to the dignitie, either of the Minister, or the Elements, but to the supreme power of the mightie [Page 141] God, who can purge the Prophet, by a coale from the altar.

Neither is it altogether without My­sterie, Doct. 2. The ap [...] teacher must haue a fiery toong. that God here sanctifieth the pro­phet, by touching his lippes with a fierie coale: for it signifieth, that the apt & suf­ficient teacher, must haue a fierie tongue, and to that same purpose, the holy Ghost came downe vppon the Apostles in fierie toongs, & it may be that the one is a tipe of the other. Certaine it is, that they Acts 2. That is a powerfull tongue, to reproue and burne vp sinne. both teach vs thus much, that all true and able Ministers, must pray and en­deuour to haue a tongue full of power and force, euen like fire, to eate vp the sinnes and corruptions of the worlde. For though it be a worthy gift of God to speake mildly, and moderately, so that his speech shal fall like deawe vpon the grasse: yet it is the firerie tongue that beates downe sinne, and workes sound grace in the heart: It may be there are some, which neede the fierie tongue.

This shewes apparantly, that those Ministers neuer had their lips touched with a coale frō Gods altar: that is, their soules [Page 142] with a coale from Gods altar: that is, their Ergo, such Ministe [...]s are fauitie, who re­proue not sinne. consciences neuer touched, nor their soules seasoned with the sanctifying grace of Gods spirit, which sit still and see great and grieuous staines in a Church, and corruptions in a State, and can bee content neuer to reproue them, as though Ministers were per­swaders onely, and not reprouers.

But when this comes to be wayed in the ballance of a good conscience, it will bee found, that not the pleasing tongue, but the fierie tongue, is the prin­cipall grace of a good Minister.

But to goe further: whence came this Coale? Whence came this Coale? from the Alter; which fire came from heauen.

Taken from the Altar.

This coale of fire was taken by the angel from the altar of God, where was a fire which neuer went out, and this fire was that, that came from heauen: sent downe by God at the dedication of the Temple by Salomon. And this fire kindled by God neuer went out: for [Page 143] no man could kindle the like, but all o­ther was counted strange fire; As Na­dab and Abihu, tryed in wofull experience, when they would needes offer with in.

Now the Prophet must be cleansed with the fire which came from Heauen: Leuit. 10. 1. 2. teaching vs, that the Minister must Doct. The fire and zeale of the Minister must come from Gods spirit. haue his fierie tongue frō the holy Ghost. As the Apostles were said to bee bapti­zed with the holy Ghost and with fire: A fierie tongue, is a speciall ornament of a Minister, but that fire must come from heauen: that is, his zeale must be a god­ly Acts. 1. 5. Math. 3. 11. and heauenly zeale; but hee that hath a rayling, lying, a slanderous, a malici­ous, or a contentious tongue, hee hath a Not from carnal affec­tions. fierie tongue indeed. But this is kindled of the sire of hell, as S. Iames saith; The vnbridled tongue is a world of wickednes, Iames 3. 6 and defileth the whole body, setteth on fire the whole course of nature, and is set on fire in hell.

So then, a spitefull and malicious tongue wee see, is a fierie tongue, but For that is from hel, not from heauen. that fire is taken from hell, and not from Gods altar.

And hee that stands vp to preach [Page 144] with this tongue, God will neuer suffer any great worke to be done by him in his Church, though his tongue be ne­uer so fierie, and his speech neuer so powerfull.

As therefore Ministers must ab­horre the flattering and pleasing tongue, and must haue a fierie tongue: so on the other side, this fire must bee from Gods altar: that is, the fire of their zeale must bee kindled by Gods spirit, and not by the spirit of discord and dissention. Ambitious humors, turbulent & proud humours, new opinions, priuate quar­rels, all these, nor none of these, are for the pulpit.

These may make a man fierie tongued, but this fire, was neuer ta­ken from Gods altar, as the Pro­phets was: this fierie tongue neuer came from heauen, as the Apostles did. It followeth.

And touched my lippes.

This fifth and last circumstance, is [Page 145] the Application of the remedie. The coale which is the medicine, is applyed by Circum­stance, the Application of the reme­die to his lips which were pollu­ted. this Angel to his lips, that is, to that part which was polluted: and as he formerly complained of the pollution of his lips, so the medicine is applyed to his lippes: Here the Angell, which in this case is made GODS minister, doth teach all Gods Ministers, a great point of wise­dome, Doct Ergo, ministers must apply their doctrin fitly. in heauenly Diuinitie, namely, to apply their Doctrine to their audience, in such manner, as the circumstances of place, times, or persons do require: some Ministers come to an ignorant and vn­humbled people, and teach them the Gospell, which neuer knewe the lawe: here the firy coale is vsed, but the lips are not touched, that is, good doctrine taught, but not well applyed: for that the lawe should first be laid to their consciences, others beate all vpon the Lawe, when it may be their hearers are a people suffi­ciently cast downe, and haue more need to be raised vp with the sweet comforts of the Gospell: others vse to laye open the nakednes of the Court in the coun­try, [Page 146] and to reproue the faults of Princes and great magistrates before the cōmon people, who haue more need of the Ca­techisme: others bring the Catechisme or points of ordinarie instruction into the Court, where the duties of Kings and councellors should be taught in all plain­nesse and sinceritie: others bring their new opinions or controuersall points vnto popular audiences, which indeede are fit for the schools: other busie them­selues about ceremonies, when the sub­stance is in daunger to be lost: All these (haue it may be) the Coale of fire, but it is misapplyed, and not applyed to the pollu­ted lips. Let all ministers therefore learne this point of wisdome of the Angell, to apply the medicines of their doctrine to the times, persons, and places, which are infected, so shal they be sure not to take paines in vaine.

And thus much of the circumstances of his consolation.

It followeth in the text.

[Page 147] Loe thy iniquitie shall be taken away, and 2 Point, the ground of his consola­tion: which is the for­giuenesse of his sinnes.thy sinnes shall be purged.

After the Circumstances, followeth the ground and matter of his consolation, and that is the forgiuenesse of his sinnes; where first let vs marke how it and the instrument are annexed together: Loe Doct 1. For­giuenesse & the meanes, are annexed together. saith the Angel, this Coale ha [...]h touched tay lippes, and thy Iniquities shall bee forgiuen, and thy sinnes purged: as though hee had bene clensed by the Coale: where we may note, how greatly God magnifi­eth the meanes which himself ordaineth, euen true remission and saluation to the right and holy vsing of them, though it come not from them, but from his own mercy, and power of his ordinance. It is therefore no maruell though God sanc­tifieth the childe by the Ministery of water in Baptisme, and feede our soules Vse. Ergo, Vse the meaues, with reuerence & despise then not. in the Lords Supper, by feeding our bo­dies with bread and wine: and no mar­uell though the carelesse neglect of ei­ther of them, be damnation to him that [Page 148] despiseth them: seeing they are Gods in­struments, ordained by him to conuey his grace vnto vs: And yet for all this, wee are to knowe, that remission or sal­uation, is no more tyed to the very ele­ments, or the actions, then here the Pro­phets forgiuenesse is to the Coale of fire.

But the maine point is, that for the Prophets consolation, the Angell tells him his iniquities shall bee taken away, and his sinnes purged, as thereby he had said thy sins were the cause of thy feare, therefore that thy feare may be taken a­way, thy sinnes shall be forgiuen.

Where we learne, that as few comes by sinne, so all true comfort comes from Doct 2. Here com­fort is from forgiuenesse of our sins. the forgiuenesse of sinnes: this is that, that onely pacifieth the conscience, and sa­tisfieth the soule: when Dauid had sin­ned against the Lord in his two great True in Da­uid. sinnes, and thereby prouoked Gods wrath against him, and wounded his owne conscience, if the Prophet had told him hee had made him King of 10 king­domes more, he had not so reioyced his 2. Sam 11. heart, as when he told him, after his re­pentance, [Page 149] thy sinnes are forgiuen thee, thou shalt not dye: So when this Prophet was And in this Prophet. extreamely affrighted at Gods presēce, because of some sinnes and negligences in his calling it had bene no comfort to his poore soule, to haue bene told, thou shalt haue a more eloquent tongue, and a more powerful speech, thou shalt haue better accesse to the Court & audience before the King: all these, and all such like, would haue beene no better then guided poyson vnto him, being in this case: but the happy answere that re­fresheth his wearie soule more then all the world, was this, Loe thy iniquities are forgiuen and thy sinnes purged.

All faithfull Ministers must heere Vse. Here is the true way to comfort distressed consciences. learne the true way of comforting trou­bled and distressed consciēces, namely, first to drawe him vnto a sight of some particular sinnes, then to summon him into Gods presence, and there to ar­raigne him for those sinnes, vntill the view of the foulnesse of his sinnes, and the glory of Gods iustice, haue suffici­ently humbled him, and then to labour to [Page 150] perswade his conscience vppon good groundes of the pardon of those sinnes by Christ Iesus, this is the way that God vsed and deuised, this is the sure way, that cannot faile.

Some thinke that all trouble of mind is nothing but melancholy and therefore Physick and outward comforts wil not serue. Psal. 3. 3. 6. 7. Psal. 32. 3. 4. Psal. 51 the whole Psalm thinke nothing needes but Physicke and outward comforts: but he that considers in what case the Prophet heere was, or Dauid when hee made the 6. the 32. or the 51. Psalmes, will be of another mind, and will finde that nothing can properly trouble the mind but sinne: therefore as the wise Physitian in his cure first search­eth out the cause, and then endeuours to take it away: so the good Physitian of the soule, must first of all search into the cause of his sicknesse, that is his sins, and must take them away: which if they doe not, then al their labour is lost: for al the companie, musicke, recreation, wine, di­et, nay all worldly comforts & delights, if it were the aduancement to a kingdom, cannot so much comfort the distressed soule of a sinner, as this voice of a minister [Page 151] spoken from God vpon good grounds; Thy sinnes are forgiuen thee. Now to lay downe what bee those true and good groundes, whereupon a Minister may This is done by the Au­thor in his Cases of conscience. safely and comfortably pronounce par­don of sins to a sinner, belongs proper­ly to another place.

In the next place; Let vs heere ob­serue Doct. 5. True quali­fication of a Minister, is to be hum­bled, and to repent. how the Lord afore he renued the Prophets commission, or send him to preach to the people, first humbles him for his sinnes, and then vppon his re­pentance, giues him pardon: teaching vs, that no Minister is well qualified to the holy duties of the Ministerie, vn­lesse hee haue truly repented of his sins, and haue obtained pardon and mercie in the Messias.

Ministers labour for qualifications, but the true Minister of God will la­bour for this qualification aboue all o­ther: for doubtlesse hee shall pronounce most powerfully the pardon of sinnes to others, to whose conscience God hath pronounced pardon of his owne.

In the last place, let vs obserue how [Page 152] the Prophet being to be comforted be­fore Doct. 4. True Pro­phets & mi­nisters shall haue helpe and comfort in their la­bours, else Angells shall to comfort them. hee goe this newe embassage, the Lord is so carefull for him, that rather then he be not comforted (if there be no man to do it), An Angel shal be sēt to be his comforter, & (if ther be not another Prophet to doe it) An Angell shall pro­nounce vnto him the pardon of his sins.

Let this be an encouragement for all Pastors and Ministers of Gods Church, to labour painfully & faithfully in their places, for the goodnesse of the Lord will neuer faile them, nor shall they want comfort, when euer they stand in neede thereof. Yea rather shall Angels from heauen be their helpes and com­forters, then faithfull Ministers shall be left destitute.

Hitherto of the second generall points: namely, of the Prophets conso­lation.

The third and last generall point is, the renouatiou of the Prophets commission, Geoerall points, the renuing of his cōmissi­on: which cositaineth 3 points. in the eight, & part of the ninth verses, and it containeth 3. parts, 1. A question or inquirie made by God; When shall I [Page 153] send, and who shall goe for vs?

2 The answere of the Prophet: Here am I, send me.

3 The commission renued vnto him: The Lord said, Goe and speake vnto this people.

The first part, is a question made by 1 Gods que­stion. God, by way of proclamation, wherein he enquireth who shall goe preach vn­to Whom shal I send. this people.

Also, I heard the voice of the Lord saying, whom shall I send? and who shall gae for vs?

In which Proclamation, and inqui­rie Not as though God had none to sēd or knew not whom. of the Lord, we are not to imagine that the Lord, was either vnprouided of such as should execute his will, or knewe not who were able, or who were willing to goe preach his word: For as the Apostle saith, in the matter of Elec­tion; 2. Tim. 2. 19. The Lord knoweth whr are his: so much more in particular vocations. The Lord knoweth who are his, and neede not to aske whom shall I send, or who shall goe? [Page 154] But then it may be demanded, why the But to our conceits and for our sake, to teach vs many good doc­trines. Lorde saith so? I answere, not for his owne sake, but for ours: whom hereby he would instruct, in diuers points of holy doctrine.

First, hereby he would giue vs to vnderstand, how hard a thing it is, to finde an able and godly Minister, for if Doct. [...]. How hard to find a good Minister. there were not a great scarcitie of such men, the Lorde needed not aske this question. But some will obiect against this, that there are in many Christian Ob. Ther are too many ministers, for some goe vp and downe. Churches so many Ministers, as they cannot all bee maintained, but some goe vp and downe vndisposed, and vnprouided for. I answere, this is too true in all ages: there were Wandering Ans. 1. Then it is a disor­der in a Church. Leuits in the Olde Testament, which went vp and downe and offered their seruice, and serued for 10. shekels of sil­uer, and a sute of apparell, and meate and drinke: but this calamitie was vpon the Iudges. 19. 18. & 17. 8. 6. Church of the Iewes, (neuer but then,) when there was no King in Israel, and eue­ry one did that which was good in his owne eyes. If therefore there bee any in our [Page 155] Church, and in christian nations, which goe vp and downe, and offer their ser­uice at such rates, it is much more mise­rable, Iudge. 17. 6. seeing now there are kings in Isra­el: and therefore it is no reason that eue­rie man rob the Church, as it shal please his couetous minde. But ceasing to enquire whether this be so or no: and if it bee so, leauing the reformation thereof to those Churches and States Ans. 2. He seeke not for any. whom it may concerne: I answere, for the matter in hand, that this may be so, and yet the Lorde may complaine as heere hee doth; Whom shall I send? for the Lord meane [...]h not such as beare the name of Leuits or Priestes in the olde, or of Ministers in the new Testament (for there were alwaies inow of them: who, some for preferment sake, some for their ease, and some for a refuge how to liue; are willing to enter that function, and accordingly in that calling, seee not the Lord, but themselues, and their owne ends).

But heere the Lorde enquireth for But for good mini­sters. such men, as first, purely doe seeke and [Page 156] vndertake that function, therein to ho­nour God, and to gather his Church, and then in all their labours and mini­steriall duties, truly and faithfully ende­uour to the same ends; Preaching Gods word, and as Gods word, diligently repro­uing, exhorting, and admonishing, and shining before their people in good workes: for such men, it is no maruell though the Lorde light a Candle at No one day, and make open Procla­mation Job. 33. 23. 2. Corinth. 2. 16. to seeke for them, saying; Whom shall I send? for, such a man is as Iob saith, One of a thousand: for some wat ability to discharge their duties, as S. Paul saith, Who are sufficient for those things? And some want willingnesse to vndertake the labour, as God here complaineth; Who shall goe for vs? Now to make vse of this doctrine to our Church.

It were to be wished, that in these daies, & for our christian Churches, the Lord Good mini­sters scarce, euen in these dayes. had not as great cause to cry out in the want of able, faithfull, and godly Mi­nisters, Whom shall I send, and who shall goe for vs? But alas, this want is too ap­parant, [Page 157] and this blemish is too notori­ous, and it is a worke worthy the labour of kings and princes to reforme it: and is a kings euil; not to be healed but by the power of a King: for as long as there are so fewe and meane preferments for painefull Ministers, there will neuer want abundance of such Ministers as doe want either conscience or abilitie to discharge their duties.

In the meane time, till God put into Vse. 1. To Ministers. 1 They in the vniuersi­ties frame themselues to the mini­sterie. the hearts of Parliaments, and Princes, to locke to this great and needfull worke; let vs Ministers learne our duties: and first, wee who are in the Vniuersities, are here admonished to look to our selues. By Gods blessing we are many, and dai­ly growe more and more: let vs there­fore so furnish our selues, as that when God or his Church shall say, Who shall goe for vs, and whom shall I send? then he may find many amongst vs, whō he may send to that great worke of the Minisie­rie: & let vs feare to be such, as thar God may affirme of vs, as in the daies of Iob, that he cannot finde one of a thousand.

[Page 158] Secondly, all Ministers learne here, 2. Labour to be worthy Ministers. not to content themselues with the name and title of Ministers, but labour for the substantiall ornaments thereof, nor to be willing to take the honour and liuings, and to refuse the burden and duties of the Ministerie.

For else let them knowe, God hath For God hath vse of them, but none of vn­cōscionable or idle Mi­nisters. no neede of them: for had the Lorde pleased or contented himself with such kinde of men, as seeke to bee Ministers for themselues, and not for his sake: or beeing Ministers, doe feede themselues, and not their flocke: or Preach them­selues, and not Christ: then had he not needed to haue made this Proclamati­on, for Ages haue yeelded store of such. But contrariwise, hee that is pain­full and faithfull in this function, let him knowe, that God and his Church hath 2. Vse. To the Cleargie of Rome. A shame to them, that being so many, there are so few of them fit for God to send. neede of him.

Lastly, heere the Romish Cleargie are iustly to bee taxed, whose num­ber is infinite: but it is lamentable to see howe fewe among them be such as the Lord heere seeketh for. Their Orders [Page 159] of Regulars are exceeding many, beside all their Secular Priests, and it is almost incredible, how many thousands there bee of Dominicans or Franciscans, or in some one of their orders: and yet a­mongst the many millions of their Monkes, there is scarce to bee found one of many, who for his learning & o­ther gifts, is fit to be sent to the worke of God: nay, their ignorance was palpa­ble and ridiculous to the world, vntill Most of all their Priests & Monks are ignorant drones. of late being by Luther, and others of our Church, made ashamed thereof, they haue laboured (especially the Ie­suites) to become learned. How foule a thing is it that amongst so many, the Lord should haue cause to complaine; Whom shall wee send? The Iesuits indeed, The Iesuites haue lear­ning but no conscience: and are ra­ther States­men, then Diuines. many of them are learned, but for o­ther qualities, they are fitter to be plot­ters, & practisers in Statematters, Spies or Intelligencers, reconcilers, seducers, and subuerters, then Ministers: and fitter to be instruments of pollicie to euil kings, then Ministers of the Gospel vnto God. But take away them, and some [Page 160] fewe selected Monkes (and those but fewe out of many thousands) & then e­uen for learning also God may cry, and call & proclaime in their Monasteries; whom shal I send? And if it be a shame and miserie to a Church to want such as God may send, or to haue but a fewe, then the Romish Church is shamelesse, which shames not to haue so many, and yet amongst them all, whom God may send, almost none.

In the next place. By this inquirie, and question made by God, whom shall Doct. 2. No man is to goe vntill God send him. I send, and who shall goe for vs? The Lord would teach vs, that no man is to vndertake this function, vnlesse God call and send him: therefore heere are condemned, the prophane fancies of the Anabaptists, and all like them, who thinke that any man vppon a priuate motion, may steppe foorth and vnder­take And not to run vpon priuate mo­tions, the duties of a Prophet, to preach and expound, &c. Oh, but say they, these motions are from Gods spirit: sure­ly they can say litle for themselues, who cannot say so much: but that cannot [Page 161] serue their turne: for if we say, contra­riwise nay, but they are from the diuel, or at the least from your owne vanitie and pride, how can they disproue it? Againe, might not the Prophet haue alledged that with a better pretence and colour then they? yet he stayeth till God heere call him: euen so all good Ministers are to stay Gods calling.

If any aske, how he shal know when Ob, How shall I know when God calles me? Ans. If Gods Church al­lowe thy calling. Gods calles him? I answere, God calleth ordinarily by his Church, her voyce is his: therefore whensoeuer the Church of God, saith vnto thee, thou shalt bee sent, and [...]ou shalt goe for vs, euen then doth the Lorde call vs out to this holy function. Doct. 3. out of the repe­tition of ho­ly 3. times. Here is no sufficient proofe of the Trini­tie, as some thinke.

Thirdly, let vs obserue how the Lord saith: Who shal (I) send? & who shal goe for (vs)? Some Interpreters gather out of this Chapter, an Argument for the trinitie of persons; as namely, out of the 3. Verse, where the Angels sing; Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God, &c. But it is not sound enough to ouerthrowe our stubborne enemies the Iewes and ther­fore [Page 162] it seemes those Diuines are of a sounder and wiser iudgement: who see­ing we haue other places pregnant and plaine enough, therefore thinke it no good discretiō to vrge this or any such place which may probably admit ano­ther Interpretation, least that the Iewes finding the weaknes of the Argument, doe iudge al our proofes to be as weak, and so take occasion to persist the rather in their blindnesse, by that which wee brought to haue conuerted them. And as for that song of the angels in the third Verse, where they ascribe holinesse to For the re­petition made by the Angel, sheweth onely how he cannot content himselfe in praysing God. the Lord 3. times: that thei [...] repetiti­on signifieth nothing else, but the con­tinuall ioy and delight which the holy Angels take in praising of God, who cannot satisfie thēselues in honouring his name: teaching vs in their example, neuer to bee weary of praysing God by prayers and holy hymnes, and of honou­ring him in our liues and callings.

But to proue out of the words; Holy, Holy, Holy, the three Persons in Trini­tie, seemes to bee no fit nor sound col­lection. [Page 163] Rather in my opinion, wee But he may be proued a pluralitie of persons. may safely collect and conclude out of these wordes (I and vs) that there are more persons in the Trinitie then one: for first, God the Father, or the whole Deitie saith: Whom shall I send? and then changing the number, hee saith: Who shall goe for v [...]? For howsoeuer God may imploy in the word Vs, that he that is sent to preach, is sent as well for the good of the Church, as for his owne glory, yet can it not bee denyed, but that the plurall number heere, and else where, ascribed to the Deitie, must needs argue a certaine pluralitie of per­sons in that Deitie: as in Genesis it is written, that God said, Let vs make man: and here, Who shall goe for vs? Gen. 1. 16.

Out of the euidence of which places, seeing the enemies of this Doctrine must needes grant a pluralitie, namely, that there are more then one: then wee shal sufficiently proue out of other pla­ces, and by other argnments, that there are three.

In the last place, let vs marke what [...] [Page 160] [...] [Page 161] [...] [Page 162] [...] [Page 163] [Page 164] God saith: Whom shall I send, & who Doct. 4. Mi­nisters are Gods ser­uants, they goe for God. shal goe for vs? God sends a minister to preach and he goeth for God. Then be­hold here, what is the trade and profes­sion of a minister, hee is the seruaunt of God. So saith God here, he goeth for me: and so saith the Apostle of himself & al other good ministers, that they are Gods Labourers.

And in another place, the Angel of 1. Corinth. 3. 9. Acts 27. 23. God appeared, Whose I am, and whom I serue. But if any man thinke that ei­ther God speaketh too fauourably of them, or S. Paul too partially of them­selues, then let the Diuell himselfe bee Confessed euen by the diuel him­selfe. Acts 16. 16. 17. q. What place is it they holde? R. His Am­bassadors. Iob. 33. 23. iudge in this case, who plainly & freely confesseth) though he did it not in loue to the truth or them). These men are the seruants of the most high God, which teach vnto vs the way of saluation. Let there­fore either God be beleeued, who is for them, or the diuell who is against them. But what kinde of seruantes are they? what place or office haue they? They are his Messengers or Ambassadors, this is their profession, and their place.

[Page 165] Now then for the vse hereof,

If they be Gods seruants, then are they Vse. 1. Then they must seeke to please God their mai­ster, not themselues. not their owne Maisters, they haue a Maister, euen God, whose they are, and for whom, and from whom they come: they may not therefore please thēselues, nor serue their own pleasures, nor seeke the satisfying of their owne carnall lustes, either in matter of pleasure, cre­dite, or profite: if they doe, then wil he call thē to a heauie account, whose ser­uants they are.

Againe, if they bee Gods seruants, Vse 2. then let them do their seruice diligently, and expect their reward assuredly. then let them doe their seruice to God, and expect their reward from God: some Ministers wil expect the reward, and honour of Gods seruants, but will doe no seruice: that beseemes not ser­uants: let such men remember for whom they come, euen from that God, who as he can giue reward, so hee will expect seruice.

And as for such men as painfully do Though the world doe not, yet God will, for they are his Ambassa­dors. their seruice, but are not regarded, nor rewarded of men as they deserue, let them bee content & continue in their [Page 166] faithfulnesse, for they are Gods Embas­sadors: & we know Embassadors may haue gifts giuen them, of those to whom they are sent: but they expect their maintenance from the kings their owne Maisters: So the maintenance which the world should giue Ministers, is like gifts giuen to Embassadors: if it come, it is no more then they deserue. If it come not, yet will faithfull Ministers doe their dutie, and expect their pay­ment from their king and Maister God, whose they are, and whom they serue.

Thirdly, if they bee Gods Embassa­dors, 3. Vse. Let no man therefore wrong them for God will not suffer his Embas­sadors to be abused. sent by him, and come from and for him, then let all such as either con­demne, or any way iniury them, bee as­sured, that as God is mighty & power­full, so he will mightily reuenge it.

There was neuer King so poore or weake, but thought himselfe strong inough to reuenge any wrong offered No king so poore that suffred it. to his Embassador. And shall God suf­fer so foule a wickednesse to lye vnpu­nished? Nay, they and their posterities shall smart for it: let Ahab, and Iezabel, 1. King. 22. 26. 27. 28. 34. &c.[Page 167] and Iulian, say it be not so: and all ages 2. King. 9. 33. &c. Act. 12. 1. 2. & 23. or stories, shew the cōtrary if they can, that euer any contemner and abuser of godly Ministers, escaped the visible vengeance of Gods reuenging hands 4. Vse. Ergo, they must not be ser­uants of men: that is, men plea­sers: but his that sent them. on him or his.

Fourthly, seeing they are Gods Mes­sengers & seruants, they must not be the seruants of men, to please, or flatter, or satisfie humours, this is not for them that are Gods seruants: they therefore that will bee slaues to the persons, and pleasures, and humours of men, they forget that they are Gods seruants, and came for him: yea, they must not en­deuour the pleasing of themselues, nor the bringing of their owne purposes to passe, but in euery motion, either made to them by others, or suggested from their owne hearts, they must forth-with call to minde, Who sent me hither, & for whom am I come? Euen from & for God: therefore they are to yeeld to nothing, nor ayme at any thing, but which may be both to the will, and for the glory of him that sent them.

[Page 168] And if the great men of this world, Great men must not thinke to haue Gods seruant at their com­mand. doe thinke it wrong that any man should command their seruant against their will, or expect any seruice from them against their owne honour: then let them thinke it reason that Gods Mi­nisters should not bee commanded any thing contrary to Gods will, or against his honour.

And further, if Ministers bee Gods seruants, then let them regard their mai­sters 5. Vse. Er­go, they must for the glory of God their Maister, both in life and doctrin. glorie, and be ashamed to doe any thing, either in their doctrine or liues, which may dishonour him: that ser­uant is vnworthy of a good maister, who seekes not his maisters credite in all his courses.

Lastly, if they be Gods embassadors, 6. Vse. Etgo, they must deliuer Gods em­bassage not their owne, and as they receiued it. then must they not deliuer their owne fancies, or inuentions, but that message they receiued: And as they receiued it, so must they deliuer it. And if they do their duties faithfully, this doctrine is comfortable to them, they may take paines, with ioy they haue a maister wil reward them: they may speake freely, (so [Page 169] it be with discretion) they haue a master will make it good: they may stand boldly in the face of their enemies, they haue a maister wil defend them. And euery faithfull Minister may say to himselfe, I will doe my dutie, and deliuer my Em­bassage. He whom I serue▪ and whose I am He who sent me and for whom I come, will beare me out. And thus much of the inquirie which God makes, and the manner of it.

Now let vs see the answere which the Prophet makes, in these words. 2. Point: The Pro­phets an­swere here am, I send me.

Then I said, Here am I: send me.

The Prophet after hee was comfor­ted by God, and had his sinnes forgi­uen, then answereth; Heere am I, send me. First, marke heere, what a great Doct. 1. He whose sins are forgiuen comes bold­ly to God: & to his dutie. change is wrought on the suddaine: he who a little afore, feared and shrunke at the least appearance of Gods glorie: now stands forth boldly, as soone as he is called, and answereth: Heere am I, send me. So great a matter is it for a mi­nister [Page 170] to haue his sinnes forgiuen, and to feele the fauour of God to his soule and conscience. Here therefore wee haue an answere to two great Questi­ons, Vse. 1. Here is the true way to peace of consci­ence, and quietnes of minde. often mooued in the worlde.

First, many would haue quietnesse of minde, and peace of conscience, and cannot attaine vnto it; If they aske how they might, to them I answere; Here is the way, seeke it not in wordly wealth, carnal pleasures, nor humane learning, in companie nor recreations: but seeke it in the fauour of God, and pardon of thy sinnes, and thou shalt not misse of it. Thus shalt thou haue comfort in thy owne conscience, courage before men, and boldnesse toward God.

Secondly, many Students in Diuini­tie, would gladly be Ministers and doe Vse. 2. To students. 1. If they would be Ministers, repent and get pardon of their sinnes. much honour to the Calling: but they finde a feare and shrinking in them­selues, and thereby an vnwillingnesse to venter vpon it. If they aske, how they may amend this: I answere, or rather the example of his Prophet answereth for me); Let that man set himselfe in [Page 171] Gods presence, enter into himselfe, search his conscience, finde out his sins, confesse and bewaile them to God, craue pardon in Christes blood, & grace to leaue them, & cease not till he heare the voyce of Gods spirit sounding in his conscience: Thy sinnes are forgiuen thee. Then when God shal aske whom shall I send, thou wilt answere readily, and with ioy, Heere am I, send me.

And againe, many are driuen from 2. If they would be encouraged against the contempts and wrongs of the world be assured of Gods fa­uour in the Pardon of thy sinnes. this calling, to beholde the contempt and reproach, and daungers which be­long vnto it. But let those men marke heere the phrase of this holy Prophet, when God asked, Whom shall I send? Hee might haue answered: Lorde, I would goe, but such disgraces and dis­couragements doe accompanie this Function, as I desire to bee excused: but hee casting aside all such conceits, answereth peremptorily, Here am I, send mee. How came this to passe, for certainly the Prophet was as sensible of these wrongs as any of vs all, for he was [Page 172] nobly borne and brought vp, & was of the blood royal: surely, because he saw he was in Gods fauour, he had him and his Commission on his side, & he held this for a sure ground: If God bee on my side, who can be against me?

Therefore doubtlesse, those men who are driuen backe by these discou­ragements, were neuer setled in assu­rance that their sinnes were forgiuen: nor satisfied sufficiently, that God is on the side of all good Ministers, and that their Calling as it hath his authoritie from God, so likewise, allowance, blessing, assisstance, and defence of God aboue any other calling: for if they were, they would scorne the scorne, and contemne the contempt of the prophane world, and with much courage and comfort set their hand to Gods Plough, and say with the Prophet; Here I am, send me. Doct. 2. We mu [...]t not set others to the labour of the Ministe­rie, but our selues also.

Secondly, let vs obserue, how the Prophet when God askes the question, sends him not to others, nor commends others to that seruice, as is to be thought [Page 173] hee might haue done many in the Churches of the Iewes, but offers him­selfe, Here am I.

It controlles the carnall courses of many amongst vs in the Ʋniuersities, who thinke it sufficient to liue there, and send out other men, and giue testi­monies and Letters of commendations Vniuersitie men must not be al­wayes sen­ding out others, but must also send out themselues. to other men, but themselues stirre not, when question is made; Who shall goe to such a place? or who shall be sent to such a parish? they say not, Here am I, but ei­ther it is too little a liuing, or too great a charge, or ill seated, or some fault it hath, that they will not be sent to it: but will answere God and his Church, there is such a man, and giue him Letters of te­stimonie, or commendation, and so all is well: but for themslues, they liue too sweete and easie liues, willingly to vndertake the contempt and burthen of the Ministerie.

Let such men therefore learne, when God & his Church giue them a calling, to answere with the Prophet: Here am I, send me.

[Page 174] And let all such as are Students of And Stu­dents must not deferre too long, but hastē to the Ministe­rie. Diuinitie in the Vniuersities, marke here the Prophets answere, not, I will bee ready, but here I am: why takes hee no longer time? because hee was now suf­ficiently qualified. Where let them learne, not to linger and lye rotting too long in their specidatiue courses: but when they are competently furnished with learning, and other qualities be­fitting that calling: let them shew them­selues willing and ready to yeeld their seruice to the Church, when they shall be called. For as an Apple may as well For some too long, as some goe too soone. hang too long on the tree, as bee puld too soone, and both make it vnfit for vse: so many men as well stay too long, as goe out too soone: and both wayes are made vnprofitable, or at least lesse profitable in the Church.

And to conclude this second point; It is not vnworthy to be noted, that the Prophet saith not, Here I am: and I Doct. 3. The Prophet wil not goe till he be sent. runne on my owne head, but, Send me.

Hee willes the Lord to send him: then where are they who dare bragge [Page 175] of their priuate motions, and will runne when they are not sent?

The Prophet might haue said: Oh, And that not by priuate motion onely, but in expresse words. now I feele a motion from the Spirit, therefore I will goe and preach: but he stayeth til he be sent in expresse termes: Let no man therfore presume to presse into this function, till hee bee fully re­solued in his conscience, that God and his Church hath said vnto him, Goe.

And though a man be neuer so well qualified with all maner of sufficiency, Men there­fore are to offer them­selues, but not to goe till they be sent. yet let him sit still and stay Gods lei­sure, and let him say, Heere I am, send me: and so rest contented vntill hee bee sent. If any man say it is vnfit that a man should say so of himselfe, I an­swere, let him not say so in words, but in deeds: let him therfore make proofe of himselfe, and giue the Church tryall of his gifts. Vpon which experience of his gifts, if he be found sufficient, that practise of his is all one, and much more then if hee had saide, Here I am, send me.

Thus wee see the Prophet would [Page 176] not stirre til he were sent, and therefore in the next word he is bid to goe.

And he said, Goe and speake vnto this people.

Here is the third and last point, 3 The Com­mission re­ceiued. Namely, the essentiall words of his Com­mission. Wherin, (after God had sought for one to goe, and the Prophet had presented himselfe, and offered his ser­uice) God both giues him leaue to goe, and further doth furnish him with au­thoritie, both to goe and speake. Doct [...]. No ma [...] is to preach with­out a Com­mission.

Wherein the principall point is, that the authoritie of the Prophets calling, is [...] from God him [...]else, in plaine and e [...]ide at words; Goe and speake: and Matth. 28. 19. Acts 9. 6. &c. till then the Prophet went not. So in the new Testament, the Apostles went not into the world to preach, till they had their Commission: Goe and teach all Nations▪ And after them Saint Paul [...] hot till it was said vnto him, Ar [...]se and goe.

In all which is discouered and con­demned [Page 177] the pride and presumption of those who dare run on their own heads, and will not stay till the Lord say vnto them: Goe, and speake. These men are bolder, then either the extraordinarie Prophets of the olde Testament, or the Apostles, which are the extraordinary This is so, for these causes. Ministers of the new: who alwaies had their warrant with the when they went. And if any man aske why is it necessa­rie they should haue so; I answere, the reasons are many.

First, all Prophets and Ministers, are Gods Deputies and Commissioners, it Rea. 1. Com­missioners haue no power but from the King. is therfore reason that they haue autho­ritie from their Lord and Maister.

Secondly, their wordes nor deedes beare no credit, nor haue any power in them, vnlesse they be spoken by vertue Real. 2 Else what they doe, is with­out vertue or bles [...]ing. Rea [...]l [...]e their persōs haue no pro­tection. of a Commission: nor haue their labours any blessing, vnlesse God giue it.

Thirdly, these persons haue no pro­tection, nor safetie▪ vnlesse they bee Gods Embassadors: and how are they so, vnlesse they be called and sent by God, and haue authoritie giuen of God? For [...] [Page 174] [...] [Page 175] [...] [Page 176] [...] [Page 177] [Page 178] these causes, no man is to thrust him­selfe into the Ministerie, without a cal­ling from God, and therefore no mar­uell, though those men who will bee Chusers, and Callers of themselues, and run when they are not sent, bee in their persons, subiect to all daungers: because they are out of Gods protection, & their labours without profit, because no bles­sing, nor promise of God was giuē vnto them: for GOD may iustly say vnto them: Let him that sent you, protect your persons: let him that sent you, blesse your labours.

But it will then be demaunded, how may I know if God bid me goe? for God Ob. how may I know if God bid me goe? speakes not now from heauen as in old time, and as to this Prophet: I answere, It is true, we are to looke for no such vi­siions, nor apparitions from heauen, for or­dinarily Ans. we must not expect Gods voice from hea­uen. there are none such, and the Popish Church doth but deceiue them­selues, and cozen the world, who tell vs of so many apparitions that happen to their Monkes and Fryers: for now or­dinarily, God speaketh in another ma­ner [Page 179] to his Church: for in Generall du­ties God speaketh to vs out of his word and holy Scriptures, and in particular But hee speaketh to man two waies, gene­rally in his word. and personall duties, (where the word in plaine termes serueth not) hee spea­keth to a man by his owne conscience, and by the voice of his Church.

Out of his word, God sheweth thee the dignitie and excellencie of this calling, 1. Corinth. 4. 1. Iob. 33. 23. Acts. 16. 17. Pro. 29. 18. to be a Minister of the word: Namely, they are his Messengers and Embassadors, &c. that so hee may winne them to loue and affect it. And againe, the necessi­citie of it, that it teacheth the way to salua­tion, that without it ordinarily Gods Church is not gathered, nor mens soules saued, that this may stirre thee 2. Particular­ly God spea­keth. 1. by the voice of his consci­ence for his inclination. 2. By the voice of [...]is Church for thy gifts. vp to vndertake the burthen: this is gene­rall. But now particularly for thy selfe, wouldest thou knowe whether GOD would haue thee to goe or no, then thou must aske thy owne conscience, and aske the Church, for if thou be hartily willing, and be fully and worthity qualified, then God bids thee goe. Now thy conscience must iudge of thy willingnesse, and the [Page 180] Church of thy abilitie: and as thou mai [...] not trust other men, to iudge of thy in­clination or affection, so thou maist not trust thy owne iudgement, to iudge of thy worthines or sufficience. If therefore thy owne conscience tell thee vpon true examination, that thou doest not loue and affect this calling aboue any other, then God sends thee not: and if thou enter with such a testimonie, not God, but some worldly and sinister respect doth send thee, and put thee forward: for though thou doest desire it, yet if the Church of God giue not allowance of thy sufficiēcie, God doth not send thee: But if contrariwise, thy conscience doe truly testifie vnto thee, that thou desirest to doe seruice to God and his Church, in this calling aboue any other: And if withal, vpon signification hereof to the Church, and vpon trial made of thy gifts and learning, the Church (that is, ma­ly Where these 2. voices call a man, there God bids him goe. learned, wise, and godly, and such as the Church hath publikely appointed for that purpose) doe approue of that thy desire, and of thy sufficiencie to doe God [Page 181] seruice in his Ministerie, and thereupon by a publike Calling, bid thee goe, then assuredly God himselfe hath bid thee goe. And it is as effectuall a calling, as if thou heardst the voice of God frō hea­uen: for as in Repentance, If thy consci­ence tell thee thou hast truly repented, and if thou canst make that knowne to the Church by so good euidēce, as ther­vpon a Minister of God pronounceth the pardon of thy sins vnto thee: If thou rest herein, and knowest it to be as ef­fectuall, as if God from heauen had told thee thy sinnes are pardoned. So is it here, if thou hast the testimonie, first of thy conscience, and then of the Church, thou art to rest therein, as in the voice of God: Vse. 1. Against thē that run, cry they be sent. And this is the calling that wee are to looke for in these dayes.

By which doctrine, as those are iustly condemned of foule presumption, who dare runne vppon priuate motions, and carnall respects, and are iustly left 2. Against such as are called by both voices and yet will not goe. without blessing or protection: so they on the other side, doe offer great wrong to God and to his Church, who when they [Page 182] cannot denie, but they affest the Mini­sterie aboue any calling, and haue approbation of their giftes from the Church of God, yet will not beleeue the Testimonie of the Church herein, but their own priuate Iudgemēts, which in this case is no way a competent Iudge, either for, or against. Let such men knowe, that they oppose them­selues euen against God himselfe: it being certaine, that where the inward calling of the conscience, and the outward cal­ling of the Church doe concurre, there God himselse calleth and biddeth that man, Goe, and speake.

Now then (to drawe to an ende) let vs obserue in the last place, with what Doct 2. See the authori­tie of a true, mioister im­mediate frō God himself authoritie a Minister of God comes vn­to vs, and executes his Function: euen with an immediate authoritie & Com­mission from God: whereby he is bid, Goe, and speake. If it bee so, let it per­swade the world, to feare to doe any wrong, either to that calling, or to those persons who come with so faire a com­mission from Vse. 1. Ergo, Let no man wrong them from God himselfe. But if it doe [Page 183] not perswade the prophane worlde, at Vse. 2. Ergo, Let Mini­sters be comforted in doing their dutie, for if God send them, he wil neuer faile them. least let this be a comfort & encourage­ment to all true Ministers, for if God bid them goe, he will goe with them him­selfe: If hee send them; hee will not for­sake them, but assist them, and blesse them, and open their mouthes, and en­large their hearts, and harden their fore­heads, and giue power vnto their words to conuer this children, & to confound and astonish the hearts of his enemies. If he send them, he will defend and pro­tect them, so that one haire of their heades shall not fall to the earth, without his proui­dence. If hee send them, hee will prouide for them, and sufficiently reward them: and will honour them in the hearts of his owne people, and magnifie them in the faces of their enemies. And lastly, if hee send them, he will pay them their wages, euen an eternal waight of comfort here, and of glorie in heauen. And as they are here bid goe, so once they shul be bid Come: and that not onely with the ge­nerall Math. 25. 34 Math. 25, 21 call of all the Elect; Come ye bles­sed of my father, inherite the kingdome pre­pared [Page 184] for you. But euen with that parti­cular Call, which especially belongs to them that are faithfull in this seruice: Come thou good and faithful seruant, enter into thy Maisters ioy.

Psalme, 118. 16.

Blessed be he that commeth in the name of the Lord.

W. P.

Daniel 12. 3.

They that turne many to righteousnesse, shall shine as the starres for euer and euer.

W. C.

1. Cor. 4. 1.

Let a man so thinke of vs as of the mini­sters of Christ, and disposers of the secrets of God.

The second time newly pervsed and published with Marginall notes. Brief­ly laying down the matter and method.


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