TOWARDS The opening of the five first Chapters of the first Book of Mo­ses called GENESIS.

Delivered by way of EXPOSITION In several Lords-dayes Exercises.

By BENJAMIN NEEDLER, Minister of the Gospel at Margaret Moses Friday-street, LONDON.

Hereunto is added by way of Apendix certaine Di­rections for the right understanding of the Scriptures.

London, Printed by T. R. & E. M. for Nathanael Webb and William Grantham, at the Bear in Pauls Church yard, near the little North-door. 1655

To the WORSHIPFULL, AND The rest his loving friends, The Parishioners of MARGARET MOSES Friday-street, London.

Dearly beloved,

THe main designe of a Minister of the Gospell, next to the glory of God, should be the spirituall good, and advantage, as of the Church of God in generall, so of the flock committed to his charge in par­ticular.

Had not this consideration been very pow­erfull, and prevailing on my Spirit, it would not have been able, to have broke through those many difficulties and discouragements (amongst which the unworthinesse, and weaknesse of the Author was not the least) [Page] that did way-lay the publication of these pa­pers.

The result of my thoughts being affirma­tive, as to the presenting of them to publike view, I determined to dedicate them to you my people.

The reasons that moved me to this, (besides your interest in the composer of them, having been your Pastor now, for some yeares; and the equity of it, that they that called for, and rejoyced in the first-fruits of his Ministery, should have tendred unto them the first-fruits of his labours in this kind also) were such as these.

1. That I might be instrument all to esta­blish you in some of the truths of Christ in these erroneous dayes; a fitter expedient here­unto I know not any (next to the illuminati­on of the Spirit) then the riight understand­ing of the text; For these late yeares especi­ally, the Devill hath walked up and downe our streets with a Bible under his arme, and upon every turne pleads Scriptum est, It is written.

2. That you might be the more confirmed, concerning the sweet harmony of the Scriptures; how one Scripture sweetly embraces, and kisses each other, although there be many in the world, that would if they could (Horrendum scelus!) [Page] make them to fall out, and mutiny. One cals the Old Testament, and the New, Gods two lips; whereby he breatheth out the same truth. Some have gone about to finde con­tradictions in them, but the spirit of contra­diction was in them, that went about it. Oh that we could as well agree with them, as they agree with themselves: while they are at peace in their doctrine, we are at warre in their interpretation.

3. That you might take notice of the obscu­rity of some texts of Scripture. We may say of the whole booke of the Scriptures, as Saint Peter doth of all Pauls Epistles: In which are some things hard to be understood: Some 2 Pet. 3. 16 things, though not all; there are some excel­lent herbes in the garden of the Scriptures, whose names we know not. Difficilia quae pulchra. And these things, They that are unlearned, and unstable, wrest, as they do also, the other Scriptures, unto their own destruction. They deale with the Scriptures, as Chymists deale with naturall bodies, torturing them to extract something out of them, which God and nature never put in them; Or as torturers deale with an inno­cent man, make him speake that which he never thought; A seasonable Item for these dayes, when men think a small measure of [Page] gifts sufficient for the interpretation of Scri­pture.

God would not have the weakest of his peo­ple starved, and therefore some truths are easy; nor the wisest of them cloyd, and sated, and therefore some truths are obscure. Nor have we cause to murmur, or repine at this dispensation. Since the fall, the understan­dings of men, are shrunke up, and contract­ed. Shall the little viall be angry, because it cannot containe the water in the Ocean? Shall the blind man blame the Sun, for shining no brighter?

4. That however God dispose of me by his providence, I might leave something in your hands, which might be for your spirituall ad­vantage: A Sermon, or Exposition, if cal­led to minde, (and I hope this small manuall may be your remembrancer) may do your souls good, seven, ten, twenty yeares after its deli­very. Physick doth not alwayes worke when it is taken, no more do the Ordinances. 'Tis said there, That many resorted unto Jesus and said, John did no miracle, but all things Joh 10. 41, 42. that John spake of this man were true; and many beleeved on him there. John had Preached of Christ before, but they did not beleeve in Christ when he Preached; But when Christ comes amongst them; they upon [Page] Johns Sermons preached a great while before, then believed.

You have in these papers, (for I thought it not safe to go without a guide, the way in many places being difficult) the conduct of severall eminently learned Authors, burning and shining lights, at whose torch my candle received light, though I may say, to the praise of free-grace, it shines not altogether (unlesse we referre to God) with a borrow­ed, and derivative lustre, &c.

One of these things I studied in this small piece, was plainenesse; it being for a consi­derable part of it polemicall: And besides, truth is an excellent Jewel, best when plain set.

I have severall counsells to you, lying neere my spirit, possibly I may have another opportunity to offer them. At present let me exhort you (as most pertinent to the businesse in hand) to a diligent study of the Word of God; To this purpose, I have annexed by way of Appendix, certain directions for the right un­derstanding of the Scriptures; if they may be of any advantage to you, blesse God for them.

Beloved, the desire of my soul is, that your soules may be saved. This is the prayer of

Your servant in the work of the Lord, Benjamin Needler.


Page 42, Line 9, for I read If p, 53, l, 3, f, foure r, five, p, 73, l, [...]3, f, principilis r, principiis, p, 83, l, 1, f, the cal­ling on, r, the carrying on, p, 89, l, 11, f, Incommodum r, Incommodam, p, 95, l, 11, f, 8, r, or, 131, l, 3, f, gracious e­vidence, r, no gracious evidence, p, 150, l, 22, f, this, r, thy, p, 208, l, 2, for esie, r, esse, p, 208, l, 23, f, sinon, r, sin.

EXPOSITORIE NOTES towards the open­ing of the first Chapter of Genesis.

THe distribution of Moses wri­tings 1 into five Books, was not done by Moses, but by others: you may observe in our Saviours time, when he quotes them, he phrases it, as it is writ­ten in the Law, not in Genesis, or Exodus, &c.

The distribution of Moses writings into 2 Chapters, we owe unto Christians a little before Bernards time.

[Page 2] The Divine authority of the Pentateuch, appears by the Lord Jesus owning of them, 3 Luke 20. 37. Now that the dead are raised, even Moses sheweth, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, &c. So Iohn 3.14. Ioh. 6.32. which cannot be said of the books called Apocryphal.

Quest. 1. verse 1.

What is meant by the heaven and the earth?

By the heaven I conceive we are to un­derstand two things. Resp.

The highest heaven, the heaven of the blessed, the dwelling place of glorified 1 Saints and Angels, called also the heaven of heavens, 1 King. 8.27.

This heaven (I conceive) was made before the earth, although I lay not any stresse up­on the order of the words. Repentance is not before Faith, because sometimes set in the first place in the text, nor was David be­fore Abraham, because David is set in the first place in the text, Matth. 1. 1.

By the heaven we are to understand An­gels, 2 Iob 38. 7. Where wert thou, saith God, when I laid the foundations of the earth? viz. when the first matter was made, of which [Page 3] the world was composed (for the earth, to speak strictly, is without foundations, and hangeth upon nothing, like a round ball in the aire) when the morning starres, viz. the Angels (for the lights of heaven, Sunne, Moone, and Starres were not yet created) sang together? &c.

To this purpose consider,

That all kinds of beings were created the 1 first six dayes.

Angels are like the heaven in their spiri­tuality, 2 and incorruptibility, as also in their power over sublunary, and earthly bodies, and therefore may be so called.

The Saints are called heaven seven times 3 in one Chapter, as carnal and eathly-mind­ed men, are called earth, verse 16. And the Rev. 12. earth helped the woman: now if the Saints be called heaven in the Scripture, why not the Angels?

From the consideration of the method, 4 that was taken by God in the Creation of man: so soone as mans seat was perfected, man was created; It is probable that pro­portionably, when those blessed invisible mansions were finished on the first day, the Angels were created.

By the earth is meant that whole confu­sed 2 Chaos of earth and water, which was [Page 4] yet without forme, and void, as is after­wards described in the second verse: now this might be called the earth, as when an house is in fieri, we call it an house, and say, an house is a building.

Quest. 2. verse 1.

It is said God created the heaven, and the earth, and yet 2 Cor. 4. 4. Satan is called the God of this world.

God is the God of the world, ratione Resp. creationis, in regard of creation; Satan is the god of the world, ratione cultûs, in regard of service, He rules in the children of diso­bedience.

Quest. 3. verse 2.

Why God should begin time with dark­nesse?

It is no greater a wonder, then that the Resp. Lord should begin a glorious world, with a rude, and confused Chaos, the progresse of his Wisdome in making the world, being for the most part, from more imperfect things to perfect; from a Chaos, to beauty; from the servants, and furniture, to man, the Lord and Master of this great house.

Darknesse is a privation, now the habit Object. [Page 5] must alwayes actually go before the priva­tion in the same subject.

This darknesse was rather a negation, Resp. 1 then a privation.

Take privation largely, and so it may be 2 first in subjecto capaci: As silence may be before speech and blindnesse before sight, in a man, who is a subject capable of both; so here darknesse might be before light, be­cause the subject of the first matter was ca­pable of both.

Quest. 4. verse 3.

God said, verse 3. Let there be light, and yet Sun, Moon, and Stars not created till the fourth day?

That light, which before the fourth day Resp. was scattered up and down upon the earth, was afterwards gathered together into the bodies of the Sun, Moon, and Stars.

Quest. 5. verse 5.

It is said, The evening and the morning was the first day; now how could there be morn­ing or evening before the Sun was created?

Evening and Morning in this place, is Resp. 1 not to be taken according to their usual sig­nification, but Morning for all that time it [Page 6] was light, Evening for all that time it was dark.

There is no argument from the present 2 state of things since the Sun was created to the former state of things before the Sun was created; morning is now caused one way by the rising of the Sun, then caused another way, by light scattered up and down upon the earth.

Quest. 6. verse 11, 12.

Whether the World began with the Au­tumne?

Some have thought that it began in the Resp. 1 Spring, and that upon two grounds.

1. Because the spring is the time of en­crease, as we fin de by experience in fish and fowle.

2. Because Adam was thrust out of Para­dise to till the ground, and spring-time is aptest for tillage.

Others, and I conceive more probably, thi [...]k the world began in the Autumne: for it is said expressely, that the earth brought forth [...]sse, and herb yeelding seed after his [...]work [...] the tree yeelding fruit, whose seed [...] self after its kind so that as man [...] a childe, but a perfect man, [Page 7] so the trees and plants were created in their perfection; and therefore when the Ser­pent tempted our first parents, which was immediately after their creation, the Tree of knowledge of good and evil had fruit fully ripe on it. The woman saw that the tree Gen. 3. 6. was good for food, and that it was pleasant for the eyes.

Quest. 7. verse 14.

Whether from those words, let them be for signes, and for seasons, and for dayes, and for years, Astrological predictions be war­rantable?

Neg. There are two sorts of predicti­ons Resp. lawful from the consideration of the position of the heavens.

1. Praedictiones naturales, natural pre­dictions, viz. when by the rising or setting of the heavenly luminaries, by their oppo­sition, conjunction, and various aspects we are able to foretel natural events, viz. the Eclipse of the Sun and Moone, &c.

2. Praedictiones civiles, civil predicti­ons, viz. when the husbandman, by the course of the Sun, Moone, and Stars, is a­ble to say when it will be a commodious season, for sowing, setting, ingraffing, pruning, &c.

[Page 8] So that we say with the Scriptures, that the Stars are for signes, viz. for signes, and seasons, and dayes, and years: And that they are not only ornamental, but influen­tial: As trees and herbs were created, not only to beautifie the earth, but otherwise for the use of man and beast, to feed them, and to cure them; so the Stars were cre­ated, not only to beautifie the heavens, but for the use and comfort of man. Certain­ly if God hath given vertue to springs, and fountains, stones, minerals, plants, every spire of grasse that growes upon the earth, much more to the Stars of heaven. But,

3. Praedictiones Astrologicae, Astrolo­gical Predictions, when men from the con­sideration of the face of the heavens, will take upon them to foretel contingent e­vents, which shal befal Kingdoms or Com­mon-wealths, or particular persons, these are unlawful.

1. They are Antiscriptural: Deut. 18. 14. Esay 44. 25. Esay 47. 13. Jer. 10. 1, 2.

2. They are unreasonable: if there were any certainty in the Astrological Art it would appeare in those Predictions that concerne the weather, which is the proper subject of the Planets operation: but how false, and uncertaine those are, I shall leave [Page 9] to any to judge, that will read them with­out prejudice.

'Tis the observation of a learned Au­thor, that the weather may be guessed by the heavens when the time is near, and na­tural causes have begun to work. As in the Evening we may guesse of the weather the next day, and in the Morning of the wea­ther in the Afternoone: that a cloud will bring a shower, and South-winde heat, ac­cording to that of our Saviour▪ When a cloud Luke 12. 54, 55. ariseth out of the West, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and when ye see the South-winde blow, ye say, There will be heat: but long before to declare these things is impossible.

To this purpose is that of Ambrose (saith he) when raine was desired of all, and one said the new Moone will bring raine, al­though we were desirous of raine, it did me good no raine fell, till it came at the prayers of the Church that it might appear it came not by the influence of the moon, but by the providence of God. A man can no more tell what God will do, by looking upon the Stars, and Heavens, then one can tell the counsels and determinations of a Prince by looking on his Palace.

'Tis sad to think how apt we are to run [Page 10] into extreams, some are so bold as to a­scribe the knowledge of future contingen­cies unto man; some so disingenuous, as to deny it to God: have a care of both, the one is Scylla, the other Charybdis; things are con­tingent to us, which are not so to God. In a Syllogisme, if the major be necessary, yet if the minor be contingent, the conclusion is contingent: the first cause is certaine, the second causes fluctuating, and wavering, hence flowes contingencie▪ We use to say, Omne quod est quando est necesse est esse; God sees things in termino, in periodo, hence they are certain to God; we see things in motu, in itinere, hence they are contingent to us: those things which are contingent in regard of their own natures, are certaine in regard of Gods fore-knowledge, and in subordi­nation to his decree.

Quest. 8. verse 14.

Why the Lord made the light, and dayes, and nights, as also the earth to yeeld her encrease, before the Sun, and Stars were created?

That the Lord might teach us, though Resp. he commonly makes use of means for the preservation of the creatures, yet he is not [Page 11] tied to means. He hath bound us to them, but he hath not bound himself. He hath made the Sun to give us light, yet he is able to give light without the Sun. God with all the creatures that he hath made, is no more then God without any of the crea­tures that he hath made.

Quest. 9. verse 24.

It is said, Let the earth bring forth the li­ving creature after his kinde, cattell, and creeping things. Now the question is whe­ther in the beginning every creeping thing was created?

Neg. Augustine was of opinion, that Resp. creatures that were generated of dead bo­dies, were not created at first: and Vallesius in his book de sacra Philosophia, renders the reason of it: Frustrà fit per plura, quod fieri potest per pauciora: God saw that these would be produced by generation a­lone, and therefore what need was there of creation?

Quest. 10. verse 25.

It is said, God made the beasts of the earth, the sixth day, Now the question is, why the beasts were created with man, rather [Page 12] then with fishes or fowles?

The reason may be this: man was not Resp. made to swim with fishes in the Sea, or to flie with fowles in the aire, but to live, and move with beasts upon the earth, therefore on the same day whereon man was made, the beasts were made.

Quest. 11. verse 25.

Whether those kindes of creatures, which are brought forth by a mixt genera­tion, as the Mule by the mixture of the Asse and the Mare, were created?

Neg. Saith the judicious Willet, for Resp. these Reasons,

1. Because these are not distinct kindes of creatures from others, but the first kinds made in the creation, mixed, and conjoyn­ed together.

2. Because we finde it directly ex­pressed, that Anah found the Mules in the Gen. 36. 24 Wildernesse, as he fed the Asses of Zibeon his father; this is set down as strange, and therefore they were not created ab initio.

Quest. 12. verse 26.

Wherefore God said, Let us make man [Page 13] in our Image? and not, Let there be man, as he said, Let there be a firmament, Let there be light, Let the earth bring forth the living thing?

The Scripture herein speaks [...], Resp. after the manner of men: and would commend unto us the excellent workmanship of God in the Creation of man: a work farre more choice then the light, & heaven, and all the rest of the crea­tures: men of wisdome, when they are to handle matters of importance, enter into consultation, and take the greater care in the performance of them.

Quest. 13. verse 26.

God said, Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and the fowles of the aire, and the cattel, but the question is, whether if man had not fallen, one man had had power over another?

Superiority and inferiority, dominion, Resp. and subjection, were not incompatible with the state of Innocencie: the authori­tative power that a father hath over his childe, and an husband over his wife, is founded in the light of nature, and there­fore not inconsistent with our primitive state.

[Page 14] Divines therefore distinguish betweene natural subjection and civil; natural subje­ction should have continued in the state of integrity, but as for civil subjection, there had beene no such thing in the world: if man had continued to serve God, he need­ed none to serve him; service come in by sinne, and the encrease of it, by the en­crease of sinne.

We see, when Canaan was so vile, as to forget the duty of a sonne, he is set in the lowest condition of a servant. Cursed be Canaan, a servant of servants shall he be un­to Gen. 9. 5. his brethren, viz. the lowest, and most abject servant. As God of gods the great­est God, the Lord of lords, the highest Lord, so servant of servants, the lowest, and basest servant.

Quest. 14. verse 27.

God is said to create man after his owne image, and Paul saies that the man is the image and glory of God, but the woman is the 1 Cor. 11. 7. glory of the man: the question is, whether the woman was not made after Gods i­mage, as well as the man?

We may consider man and woman two Resp. manner of wayes, either as they were both [Page 15] rational creatures, and so without question the woman was made after the image of God as well as the man: but now consider them as to their sex, or as to their relations of man and wife, so man is her superiour, and in regard of that authority that the man hath over the woman the man is said to be the image of God, and the woman the glory of her husband; and well may she be called the glory of man, for it was a far greater honour for man, to have dominion over one of his own kind, then over all the beasts.

Quest. 15. verse 27.

'Tis said, both man and woman were created the sixth day, male and female cre­ated he them, and yet after the six days were over, it is said, The Lord caused a deep sleep Gen. 2.21 22. to fall upon Adam, and he slept, and of one of his ribs he made a woman?

These Scriptures are easily reconciled; In the first chapter the Spirit of God tells Resp. us what God did the sixth day, viz. he cre­ated the man, and woman, male and fe­male; In the second chapter he tels us Gods manner of doing it.

Quest. 16. verse 28.

'Tis said God blessed them, and said, Be fruit­ful [Page 16] and multiply: and yet our Saviour saies, Luke 23. 29. Behold the days are coming when they shall say, Blessed are the barren, &c. and so in another place, Woe to them that are with child in those dayes. Mat. 24.19

To have children; to be fruitful, in its self considered, is a mercie; and to be pre­ferred Resp. before barrennesse, but yet [...], and in some respect barrennesse is to be prefer­red before it; As when enemies are ap­proaching, and a place is like to be destroy­ed with the sword: women with childe are not able to flie and shift for themselves, and therefore Woe to women with childe; in those dayes: And 'tis better to have no children, then to see them butchered and massacred before our eyes. And this shewes the singular difference between spiritual mercies and temporal: spiritual mercies are alwayes desirable, and never out of season.

Quest. 17. verse 29.

Whether the eating of flesh or fish was allowed by God to our forefathers before the flood? for after the flood we finde this liberty was given, Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you: but in this Gen 9.3. chapter, when God speaks of the provisi­on [Page 17] made for man, he only speaks of Trees, and Herbs, and Vegetables.

I humbly conceive the Affirmative, en­clined Resp. thereunto by these reasons.

1. God did not forbid them eating of flesh, & therfore left them to their liberty.

2. What use could there be made of fish, and many other creatures, if they had not been allowed for meat?

3. They offered up Sacrifices of their cattel, Abel brought of the firstlings of his Gen. 4.4. flock: Now it was a thing received and ta­ken for granted among the Jews, that they might eat of their Sacrifices.

4. They wore the skins of beasts, and therefore it is likely, they ate also the flesh; Unto Adam also, and unto his wife, did the Gen. 3.21. Lord God make coats of skins.

But after the flood God expressely per­mitted the eating of flesh, and therefore he Object. did not permit it before.

Negativa non probant. By the same rea­son Resp. 1 it would follow, that because the Rain­bowe was not mentioned before the flood, the Rainbowe was not before the flood; which we have no cause to beleeve, for Po­sitâ causâ ponitur effectus: Now the Rain­bowe is caused by the Sun shining upon a watery cloud: It is true, it was not the to­ken [Page 18] of Gods Covenant till after the flood, but it was before.

God did not after the flood give man a right to that, which he had not before the flood, but only reinvested him with those possessions, and priviledges, which he had been cast out of, by reason of his sinne.

Notes on the second Chapter.

Quest. 1. verse 1, 2.

HOw is it said, that God ended his work the seventh day, when God is to­tus actus, and besides, John 5. 17 our Sa­viour saith, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work?

Cessavit ab actu creationis non ab actu.

Resp. 1 Moses doth not say simply he rested from 2 all his work, but from all his work which he had made, viz. from the works of creation: and therefore that of our Saviour, my Fa­ther worketh hitherto, and I work, must be understood of the works of providence.

But the souls of all the men and women Object. in the world, from the beginning have been created to this very day.

God rested from the creation of speci­es Resp. or kinds, not from the creation of in­dividuals.

[Page 19] But the earth afterwards brought forth Object. briars, and thorns, therefore new kinds were created, Gen. 3.17, 18.

I know no inconvenience will follow, Resp. if we affirme, that briars and thornes were created the first six dayes: it is true, they should not in the least have been prejudi­cial either to man, or to the fruits of the earth, if man had not sinned; and therefore it is likely, if man had continued in his primitive state of integrity, briars and thornes should have growen in their place, and the fruits of the earth in their place: this blending and mixing of briars and thornes amongst the fruits of the earth is the product of the sin of man.

But there are several things in the world, Object. the creation whereof we read not the first six dayes; as wine, milk, &c.

Some things were created in their per­fection, Resp. some things in their principles: though wine was not created, the grape was; though milk was not created, the brest was.

Quest. 2. verse 3.

Whether God did from the first crea­tion, appoint that the seventh day should be kept as an holy Sabbath? or whether this be spoken by way of Prolepsis, or An­ticipation, [Page 20] viz. because God rested from his work upon the seventh day, therefore he did afterwards, at the time of the giving of the Law ordaine, that every seventh day of the week should be kept holy, as a Sab­bath of rest unto the Lord.

The Sabbath was appointed from the Resp. creation: 'tis true

It cannot be denied, but that it is an usu­all thing in Scripture, to set down things in way of Prolepsis, or Anticipation, as they call it, to set down things aforehand, in the History, which happened many years af­terward: but there is no such Prolepsis here, as if the meaning should be that he did this two thousand five hundred years after the creation. It is observable that throughout the whole Scripture, we shall not finde one Prolepsis, but that the History is evidently and apparently false, unlesse we do ac­knowledge a Prolepsis and Anticipation to be in the History: the necessity of establish­ing the truth of the History, only can esta­blish the truth of a Prolepsis in the History: but in this place alledged, can any say that the story is apparently false, unlesse we i­magine the Sabbath to be first sanctified on mount Sinai?

But Gods sanctifying the Sabbath may be Object. [Page 21] expounded thus: God did actually purpose to sanctifie it after the giving of the Law.

If to sanctifie the seventh day, be only Resp. to purpose to sanctifie it, then the Sabbath was no more sanctified since the creation, then ab aeterno: for then God purposed it should be sanctified, &c.

For the further clearing of this truth, I shall give you the Arguments of some learned persons, why they conceive that the Sabbath was not instituted till the gi­ving of the Law on mount Sinai.

Adam in innocency should not have Arg. 1 needed a Sabbath; not his soul, for every day was a Sabbath to that; nor his body, because his body was not then subject to wearinesse, neither could it be appointed for the ease of servants, because then no such thing as servitude in the world.

The Sabbath was instituted, not for Resp. 1 common rest, or rest from natural weari­nesse principally; but for holy rest, that the soul might have more immediate com­munion with God, Returne to thy rest, O my soule, saith the Psalmist: The rest of the soule is not a ceasing from all operation, for that cannot stand with the nature of a spirit; hence the soul is called [...], an act, because it is still in action, a spirit can­not [Page 22] be, and not act; but when the soule centers on God, then it is said to rest.

Bodies rest in their proper places, and souls rest in the enjoying of their proper objects. Now Adam in innocency, thogh his body was not subject to wearinesse, might stand in need of such a rest as this is.

Adam was to serve God in a particular 2 calling, God took the man & put him into the garden of Eden, that he might dresse it, & keep Gen. 2. 5. it; now Luther professeth, It followes from hence, saith he, that if Adam had stood in his innocency, yet he should have kept the seventh day holy, viz. on that day he should have taught his children, what was the Word of God, & wherein his worship did consist, and wholly have sequestred himself to his service; on other days he should have dres­sed and kept the garden; though every day was to be spent in holinesse mediately, in seeing God in the creatures, and meet­ing with God in his labour, yet it was not unsuitable for that estate, to have one day in the week, for more immediate, and speci­al converse with God; and though it was no paine to him to dresse the garden, yet this must needs take up his thoughts while he was about it.

The Saints and Angels in Heaven, have Object. [Page 23] had no set Sabbath, and why man in in­nocency?

The state of innocency on earth, should Resp. not have been in all things alike, to the state of glory in heaven, and particularly in this, there should have been marriage, dressing of the garden, day and night in Paradise; but no such thing in Heaven.

We do not read, that there was any o­ther Arg. 2 positive precept or law given to our first parents in the state of innocency, but only this, that they should not eat of the forbidden fruit. Now the command of God for the observation of the Sabbath, is a positive command, and that appears, be­cause, although the worship of God do be­long to the Law natural, viz. founded in the Law of nature yet the circumstance of time, when God in an especial manner is to be worshipped, that we should keep an holy rest unto the Lord every seventh day, this is a positive precept, and was never deter­mined by the Law of nature.

That Adam had from the creation, at Resp. least that which amounted to a positive Law for the observance of the Sabbath, is plaine. It is said, God sanctified the seventh day: Now, though this word is vari­ously taken in the Scripture, yet in this [Page 24] place, the seventh day must be said to be sanctified one of these two wayes:

Either by infusion of holinesse, or san­ctification 1 into it; now the circumstance of a seventh day, is not capable of sanctifi­cation in this sense, only rational creatures, Angels and men may be said thus to be sanctified.

By separation of it from common use, and dedication of it to an holy use, as the 2 Temple and Tabernacle were, which had no inherent holinesse in them.

Now if the Sabbath were thus sanctifi­ed, it must either be for the use of God, or man; either God must impose upon him­self the observation of every seventh day to keep it holy, which is absurd; or else it was dedicated and consecrated for mans sake and use: and if so, man had that which amounted to a positive Law for the obser­vation of the Sabbath.

When Moses makes repetition of the Arg. 3 Law of God, Deut. 5. 15. he laies downe this as a ground of the observation of the seventh day as a Sabbath, the deliverance of Israel out of Egypt, therefore the Sab­bath was not instituted from the creation.

This that is urged is placed by God by Resp. way of preface and motive as an argument [Page 25] for the observation of all the Command­ments, yet who will say that none of them were in force till the deliverance of Israel out of Egypt?

This was one reason why the Sabbath Resp. 2 should be sanctified, but not the only rea­son: therefore, Exod. 20. 6. the reason that is rendered there, why the seventh day is the Sabbath, is this, for in six dayes, the Lord made heaven and earth, &c.

The Jewes were to observe the Sabbath not only upon the ground of its first insti­tution, but upon reasons, proper, and pe­culiar to that Nation. It is likely their de­liverance out of Egypt, was on the Sabbath day, and therefore urged by Moses, as a ground of their observation of it.

We finde not any expresse mention, Arg. 4 that the Patriarchs before Moses time did sanctifie a Sabbath.

We may as well argue, it was not kept Resp. all the time of the Judges, and Samuel, be­cause no expresse mention made in those Books of any such thing.

No doubt, but they observed it, be­cause Object. it was published on mount Sinai.

The like may we say of the Patriarchs Resp. 1 before the promulgation of the Law on mount Sinai, because it was sanctified from the Creation.

[Page 26] Abraham is commended for keeping Gods 2 Commandments, and the Sabbath is one of Gen. 26.5. them.

We may as well argue, that the Patri­archs 3 for two thousand five hundred yeares together, observed not any day at all for the worship and service of God; for there is in Scripture as much mention of a Sab­bath, as any other day: yea,

It is plaine in the Scripture, that the Jewes did keep the Sabbath before the 4 Law was given: This is that which the Lord hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy Exo 16.23 Sabhath unto the Lord, &c.

I might adde, that it is not improbable, but the sacrifices of Cain and Abel were upon the Sabbath-day, the usual stated time for such services: If a time had not beene set apart even in Adams dayes, for Divine service, how improbable is it, that Cain and Abel should concurre at the same time, in bringing their offerings unto the Lord? and if not at the same time, how could Cain discerne that Abels offering was respected, and accepted of God, when his was Gen. 4.3. not? and besides, it is said, In processe of time it came to passe, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground, an offering unto the Lord. In the processe of time, or at the end [Page 27] of days, as it is in the margin of your Bibles, and as the original will bear it, viz. on the Sabbath-day; when there is an end of the dayes of the week, and they begin again.

I might adde, that it is not improbable, but that Noah and his family kept the Sab­bath in the Ark; for it is said, that he stayed Gen. 8. 10, 12. other seven dayes, and sent forth the Dove out of the Ark; and verse 12. He stayed other seven dayes, and sent forth the Dove: why did Noah this on the seventh day? It was likely that then Noah and his family were at prayer, and engaged in the worship and service of God, and at such times it is good to make experiments of Gods fatherly care of us, and providence over us.

Quest. 3. verse 4.

In the first Chapter it is said, that God made the heavens, and the earth, in six dayes, and in this verse it is said, These are the gene­rations of the heaven, and the earth, in the day that the Lord God made the earth, and the heavens.

From this place some would gather, that Resp. 1 all the world was made in one day, and that Moses doth divide the creation into six dayes propter captum, that it might be the better understood.

[Page 28] Others conceive, that Moses relates to 2 that first matter or substance, of which all things were created: now this was made in one day.

Others think, with whom I close, that 3 Moses doth not speak strictly here, but in­definitely, in the day the Lord made the earth, that is to say, in the time the Lord made the earth: so it is taken in other places of Scripture, To day if you will hear Psal 95.7. his voice, &c.

Quest. 4. verse 5.

How God could be said to create every plant of the field before it was in the earth?

Either the meaning is, that they were Resp. 1 created potentialiter, in the first masse, and so created before they were in the earth.

Or else the meaning is this, God created 2 every plant of the field, before it was in the earth, viz. there was not a plant in the earth, before God created it.

Quest. 5. verse 7.

It is said, God formed man of the dust of the earth: How can man be said to be made of dust, or earth, when he is made of the four elements, earth, fire, aire, water?

[Page 29] Moses saies, God formed man of the dust Resp. 1 of the earth, but not only of the dust of the earth.

Moses loquitur de terra, ut de causa par­tiali, 2 non totali: Moses speaks of the dust, but as part of that matter, of which man was made.

But he expresses the one, and therefore Object. by consequence denies the other.

This is just as if a man, by calling one his Resp. fathers sonne, should deny him to be his mothers.

Quest. 6. verse 7.

Why doth the Lord speak distinctly in this verse concerning mans body and soul? We shall finde God speaks of other crea­tures in the bulk, body and soul together, Let the waters bring forth abandantly, the moving creature that hath life, and so, verse Gen. 1. 20 24 24. Let the earth bring forth the living crea­ture after his kinde? &c.

To note the spirituality and immateri­ality Resp. 1 of the soul; the soul of man, non edu­citur ex potentiâ materiae, as the Learned phrase it; but the body was made of one kind of substance, and the soul of another: for, Consider.

1. The condition, and nature of its ob­ject, [Page 30] speaks this truth; Seneca could say, Hoc habet argumentum anima suae divinitatis, quòd illam divina delectant; This argument of its spirituality, hath the soul of man, in its own essence, that it is delighted with things divine and spiritual. If the soul were material, we could not reach to the know­ledge of any thing but that which is mate­rial: and we might as well see Angels with our eyes, as understand them with our mindes. We say, Receptio fit per modum re­cipientis; you cannot fill a chest with vertue.

2. Its independence on the body: it is able of it self to performe its own actions, without the help and concurrence of the outward man. It seeth when the eys beshut, and sometimes seeth not when the eyes be open. It travelleth while the body resteth & resteth when the body travelleth, Rev. 1. 10. When John saw his glorious revelati­on, he is said to be in the spirit: when Paul had his revelations, and saw things unutter­able, he knew not, whether he were in the body or out of the body: for beleevers to know, that there are laid up for the Saints such joyes, which eye hath not seene, nor eare heard: what is this but to leave sense behinde us, and out-run our bodies?

[Page 31] 3. Time that wears out all corporeal things, addes perfection to the souls and under­standings of men: old men, who have the weakest bodies, have the most lively and vi­gorous souls: yea, we may observe, that men who have the most admirable soul-accom­plishments, have usually the weakest bo­dies, and are not of the longest lives. 'Tis a remarkable passage, that of Saint John to Gaius, I wish, saith he, that thy body prosper­ed, even as thy soul prospers.

Here is a clear text against the Atheists of these dayes, that question whether there 2 be a soul or not; the truth is, a man can­not doubt of it, without it; as a man can­not prove Logick to be unnecessary, but by Logick, as a man cannot say he is dumb, without speaking.

Quest. 7. verse 7.

In what sense these words are to be un­derstood, He breathed into his face the breath of life? for the Manichees from hence held, that the soul was part of Gods Essence, as the breath is part of a mans substance.

It is true, in mans breath there is part of Resp. his substance, but these words are not spo­ken of God properly, but metaphorically: [Page 32] if Moses should have said, Jehovah, by the power of his Spirit, without making use of any elementary matter, breathed into man a vital soul.

An horrid blasphemy to think the Es­sence of God should be subject to change, ignorance, sinne, &c. as the soul is.

Quest. 8. verse 7.

Why is God said to breath into his no­strils or face the breath of life, rather then into any other part of the body?

Because the operations of the soul di­scover themselves in no part of the body, Resp. 1 more then in the face: hence a living man is usually pictured smiling, or reading, &c.

And besides, the face and head is the seat of all the senses, except the touch, which indeed is spread all over the body; so that the principal part of the body, is put here for the whole: God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, viz. into his body the breath of life.

Because life seemes to be seated in the nostrils: Nares Externum Respirationis or­ganum: 2 breath the necessary consequent of life: hence God is said to breath into his nostrils, because it is the part by which we breath and live.

Quest. 9. verse 8.

Why the Lord planted the Garden of Eden for the use of man, when he knew that man would not continue in his primi­tive state, and so by consequence be cast out of Paradise?

God would deale with man, not accord­ing Resp. 1 to his own foreknowledge of what he would be, but according to that state he was in for the present.

God placed him in Paradise, that he 2 might know, by woful experience, of how much good he was deprived, by transgres­sing of the command of God.

Gods dispensation herein, towards man, 3 was like that other dispensation of his to­wards the Devils: they were first placed in heaven, though God knew, that afterwards for their sinne, they should be cast out of heaven.

Quest. 10. verse 8.

It is said, That there viz. in Paradice God put the man whom he had formed; Now the question is, whether there were any other creatures in Paradise besides man?

Affir. For these Reasons. Resp.

[Page 34] 1. Because man while he was in Para­dise, had dominion over all the creatures.

2. If Eve had neither seen the Serpent. nor any other creature before the tempta­tion, it is likely she would have been start­led with the sight of the Serpent, and not easily have treated with it.

3. If the beasts had not been in Para­dise, man would have been deprived of that great pleasure that he might be partaker of, from the sight of the variety of crea­tures, over which he had dominion.

4. Because man gave names to the crea­tures in Paradise, verse 20.

Quest. 11. verse 9.

Why one of the trees that was planted by God in the midst of Paradise, was cal­led the tree of life.

Some conceive, that it was called so ef­fectivè, Resp. 1 because the fruit of it had a special quality, and efficacie with it, to preserve Adam immortal.

Others conceive, with whom I rather close, that it was called so significative, be­cause 2 it was a sacramental signe annexed to the Covenant of works assuring life, and immortality, upon condition of perfect o­bedience.

[Page 35] But it seemes, that the fruit of the tree Object. of life should have made man immortal, for it is said, And the Lord said, Behold, the man is become like one of us, to know good and e­vil; Gen. 3.22. now lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, therefore the Lord sent him forth from the garden of Eden, &c.

I suppose this is an Ironical expression: Resp. as when the Lord said, Behold, the man is be­come like one of us, to know good and evil, this was spoken ironically, and the meaning was, they were become most unlike him: so in these words ironically he upbraids him after the same manner, Lest, saith the Lord, he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life; and eat, and live for ever; not that there was any danger of his living for ever, but in derision of any such hope, or ex­pectation.

Quest. 12. verse 9.

Whether the tree of life in Paradise was a type of Christ?

Neg. For the clearing of this▪ consider, Resp.

1. That we should be very wary of Al­legorizing any part of the Scriptures: The Libertines of our times, are so daring, as to turne all the Scriptures into an Allegory: as the Gnosticks of old, made abstinence from [Page 36] adultery forbidden in the seventh Com­mandment, a type of our spiritual chastity: it is the designe of some frothy wits to ty­pisie, and allegorize Gods Command­ments out of the Law, and his truths out of the Gospel.

2. That it is an unwary Assertion, that the tree of life in Paradise was a type of Christ; although the tree of life, and sundry other things in Paradise, are made simili­tudes to set forth Jesus Christ, yet it is agross mistake, to make every metaphor, or simi­litude, and allusion to be a type. The Hus­bandmans sowing of the seed, is a similitude of preaching the Word, yet it is no type of it: The head, & the members of mans body, are similitudes of Christ, the head, and the Church, his members; but will any affirme these were types of Christ? Just thus was the tree of life, a similitude, to which the holy Ghost alludes in making mention of Christ, but not a type: and the reason is, because the Covenant of works, by which Adam was to live, is directly contrary to the Covenant of grace, by faith in Christ: Adam therefore was not capable of any types then to reveale Christ to him, of whom the first Covenant cannot speak, and of whom Adam stood in no need.

[Page 37] But though Adam stood in no need of Object. Christ, as a Redeemer, yet as a Confirm­er of him in that state: and why may we not conceive, That if Adam had not sinned, Christ should have beene incarnate, and that then he should have beene head of mankinde, as now the head of Angels? and if so, the tree of life might be a type of Christ.

If the tree of life was a type of mans Resp. 1 Confirmation by Christ, then there would have beene a type of Christ, which never should have beene fulfilled.

I conceive it a dangerous assertion to say Christ would have beene incarnated if 2 Adam had not sinned: because the Scrip­ture nameth this to be the principal end of Christs coming into the world, to save that which was lost: Ultra Scripturam sapere est insanire.

May not a man say, the tree of life was a type of Christ by Anticipation? Object.

This is as much as to say it was not a type Resp. then: which is the thing we contend for.

Quest. 13. verse 9.

Why was the other tree called the tree of knowledge of good and evil?

Not Effectivè, because the fruit thereof Resp. 1 [Page 38] had any such quality, or vertue, that being eaten, it would work, and encrease know­ledge, or quicknesse of wit: indeed the So­cinians border upon this opinion, and they say, Adam and Eve were created simple and weak in knowledge, and that this tree was to beget it, and encrease it.

But significativè, because it was an­other sacramental sign annexed to the Co­venant 2 of works, sealing death and dam­nation in case of disobedience: and it did signifie that upon the eating thereof, they should experimentally know good and e­vil: viz. the worth of good, by the want of it, and the presence of evil, by the sense of it.

But it is said, Man is become like one of Object. us, knowing good and evil: now God can­not be said to know the worth of good, by the want of it, or the presence of evil, by the sense of it.

The Lord speaketh those words Ironi­cally, Resp. as before.

Quest. 14. verse 15.

It is said, God put the man into the garden of Eden to dresse it, and yet afterwards, it is pronounced as a curse: In the sweat of thy [Page 39] face, thou shalt eate thy bread, Gen. 3.16.

Man should have laboured if he had con­tinued Resp. in his first estate, but those irksome concomitants of labour, paine, sweat, weari­someness, spending of the strength, and spi­rits, are the product of sinne.

Quest. 15. verse 16, 17.

Here the Lord gives a Law to man, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eate, but of the tree of the knowledge of good ond evil, thou shalt not eate; and yet, the Apostle saies, The Law is not made for the 1 Tim. 1.9 righteous.

The Law is not made to the righteous Resp. 1 person so, as he should be under the vindi­cative or punishing part of it, he continu­ing in his righteousnesse; and in this sense it may be applied to man in innocency: man in innocency might be under the di­rective part of the Law, though not under the vindicative part of it.

The Apostle speaks of Gospel-times, when 2 man was in another state; & his meaning is, the law is not made to the beleever so, as he should abide under the cursing & condem­ning power of it: the godly are under the desert of the curse of the Law, but not the actual curse and condemnation thereof; nor [Page 40] doth it follow, as a Reverend Author very well observes, that there is no Law because it doth not curse. It is a good rule in Di­vinity, A remotione actûs secundi in subje­cto impediti, non valet argumentum ad re­motionem actûs primi; From the removal of an act or operation, the argument doth not hold to the removing of the thing it self: As it doth not follow, The fire did not burne the three Worthies, therefore there was no fire: God did hinder the act: And if that could be in natural agents, which work naturally, how much rather in moral? such as the Law is of condemnati­on, which works according to the appoint­ment of God.

Quest. 16. verse 16, 17.

Why would God give man a positive [...] [...]esides that natural Law that was [...] his heart?

[...] thereby Gods dominion and pow­ [...] [...] man might be the more acknow­ [...]ged: man might have submitted to the [...]oral Law of God, not so much in order [...]o the command, as because it was suitable to that principle which was within him; for the Moral Law at first was written in mans [Page 41] heart: Even as the Heathens do abstaine from many sinnes, not because forbidden by God, but as dissonant to their natural reason, therefore God gives him a positive Law: Ut nulla alia causa esset obedientiae, ni­si obedientia. So that the forbidding to eat, was not from any sinne in the action, but from the will of the Law-giver: As if a man forbid another to touch such an herb, because it is poison, this herb is contrary to a mans health, whether it be forbidden or not, and therefore he may abstaine from it, not because of the command, but because it is contrary to his health: but to forbid the eating of something, that is wholsome to the body, and delightful to the taste, here indeed is a triall of obedience.

Quest. 17. verse 16, 17.

Whether sensitive creatures be capable of being under the obligation of a Law?

Neg. Inter bruta silent Leges: for Resp.

1. There can be no satisfaction to ju­stice, in inflicting an evil upon them; no satisfaction to be had from such things, as are not apprehensive of punishment. Seneca, Quàm stultum est his irasci, quae iram no­stram nec meruerunt, nec sentiunt.

[Page 42] 2. A punishment inflicted upon them hath no power to mend brutes, or to give an example to others amongst them.

3. Nec turpe nec honestum among them, no duty, nor obedience to be expected from them, no praise nor dispraise due to them: no punishment nor reward to be distribu­ted among them.

Levit. 20. 15. I a man lie with a beast, Object. he shall surely be put to death, and ye shall slay the beast.

The meaning of that place is not this, Resp. that the beast was guilty of a crime, or had violated a Law, and therefore was to be condemned, and put to death, but it was in order to the happinesse, and welfare of man; bestia cum homine concumbens was to be stoned.

1. Because it was the occasion of so foul a fact, and so fatall punishment unto man.

2. That the sight, and presence of the object might not repeat so prodigious a crime, in the thoughts of men.

Exo. 21. 28. If an Oxe gore a man or a Object. woman that they dye, then the Oxe shall be stoned.

This was ad poenam exigendam à domino Resp. the putting of that to death, was a punish­ment to the owner for not looking to it better.

Quest. 18. verse 17.

It is said, In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely dye, what is meant by death in that place?

Spirituall, temporal, eternal death.

1. Spiritual death, this is comprehended Resp. in the very nature of sinne; spiritual death is nothing else, but a separation of God from the soule; now the nearer the corre­spondence is between the soule and sinne, the further the distance is between the soul and God.

2. Temporal death, for so the Spirit of God expounds his meaning afterwards; In the Gen. 3.19. sweat of thy browes shalt thou eat thy bread: dusl thou art, and to dust shalt thou returne.

3. Eternall death, this is cleared by the Apostle Paul, when he saies, The wages of sinne is death; and that he principally Rom 6.23 intends eternall death in that place, is clear by the life to which it is opposed, The gift of God is eternall life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Quest. 19. verse 17.

Whether Adam was created mortal? or, [Page 44] Whether Adam was mortall before his 2 eating of the forbidden fruit?

Neg. As appears by the threat pronoun­ced Resp. against him, In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt die the death.

'Tis said of God, Who onely hath immor­tality, Object. 1 Tim. 6.16.

A thing may be said to be immortall se­verall Resp. wayes.

1. Simply, and independently; immor­tall omni modo, in every respect, and so is that Scripture to be understood, Who one­ly hath immortality.

2. Immortal secundùm substantiam, in regard of its substance: there are some be­ings that are segregated from matter, and corporeity, and are not è potentiâ Materiae Educti, as the Learned phrase it: as Angels and rationall soules: now these though they are not immortall simply, and inde­pendently, yet they are so, as I may phrase it, substantially.

3. Immortal by the power and mercy of God, or immortal by the power and justice of God: the power and justice of God given immortality to the bodies of the damned in hel, and the power and goodnes of God gives immortality to the bodies of the Saints in glory: now these, though [Page 45] mortal and corruptible substantialy, yet are immortal and incorruptible by the power, justice, and goodnesse of God.

4. Immortal ex hypothesi: when a thing may be said to be mortal in regard of its constitution, yet immortall upon this supposition, if it continue in its obedience: and in this sense, Adam was created im­mortal.

So that Adam in the state of innocency might be said to be mortal in regard of the composure of his body, immortal because he had potentiam non moriendi, a possibili­ty not to die.

Yet we must consider, there was a great deale of difference between the mor­tality of Adams body in the sense before mentioned, before the fall, and after the fall; the one was natural, the other con­tracted by sinne: Before the fall, he might be said to be mortal, because he had a posse mori, he might die; after the fall, he might be said to be mortal, because he had a non posse non mori, he must die.

The Arguments of the Socinians, where­by they would prove Adam to be mortal, in regard of his body and the composure of it, we are ready to grant, and yet keep­to our principle, that Adam was not created mortall.

[Page 46] The Arguments brought by the Socini­ans against this truth are these.

Adam dyed not the death of the body Arg. 1 or a naturall death when he had sinned; therefore the death of the body, was not inflicted upon his person for sinne, but was the consequent of his nature.

Though Adam dyed not a naturall death, Resp. 1 yet he was presently made subject or lia­ble unto death: the sentence was past up­on him, though the sentence was not ex­ecuted upon him: We count a malefact­our cast at the barre, a dead man, though reprieved the present stroke of death; a man that hath received a deadly wound, we account a dead man, though he live for some time after.

Though death it selfe did not instantly 2 seize upon him, yet the symptoms of death did, as feare, shame, pains, distempers, sweat, wearinesse, &c.

Adam and Eve, before the fall were to Arg. 2 encrease, and multiply; but those that are immortall, do not beget children, as not suitable to their state of immortality Luke 20.35. They that shall be accounted wor­thy to obtain the immortal state, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage.

[Page 47] Our Saviour speaketh there of the Resp. immortality of Glory, not of the immor­tality of the state of Innocency: That there is a difference between these two is easie to perceive: the one is absolute, the other conditionall.

An earthly man is a mortal man: the first Arg. 3 man of the earth, earthly. 1 Cor. 15. 47

An earthly sinfull man and mortall are terms convertible, not an earthly man and Resp. mortall.

Adam was to eat and drink, and this Arg. 4 was not suitable to a state of immortality.

This was not suitable to the state of im­mortality Resp. in Glory, but suitable enough to the state of immortality in innocency.

Positâ Causá ponitur Effectus; now Compo­sition Arg. 5 is the Cause of corruption.

There was the Cause of mortality in Resp. mans body but of mortality in potentia re­mota, not in potentia proxima for at present, there was no consumption of the parts, no fighting, nor disorder among the Ele­ments, nor should this have been reduced into act, had it not been for mans sin: let it not seem strange that datur potentia quae non reducatur in actum. There is a power in God to make ten thousand worlds, which not­withstanding shal never be made, and so his power not reduced into act.

Quest. 20. vers. 17.

Whether death was inflicted on man, as a punishment for sin?

Affir. This appears by the threat pronoun­ced Resp. this verse, In the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely dye.

All punishment is from God: But death Object. is not from God, but from man.

Death is not à Deo effectore, Death is not Resp. from God in regard of creation, but it is God from in regard of ordination.

That which is homini naturale, naturall to man, that cannot be the punishment of Object. sin: man was compleat in regard of his naturals in the state of innocency.

Naturale, or that which is naturall may be taken two manner of wayes. Resp.

Propriè for that which is essentiale naturae, essential to nature; as to understand, to will, 1 to desire: now we say, essentiale semper com­petit: and therefore in this sense death is not naturall.

Impropriè, for those things which do ad­here 2 to corrupt nature because of sin, and are propagated with it, as diseases, death it selfe; in this sense, we say that death is natu­rall, or we call it naturall death.

[Page 49] Christ hath delivered us from all that Object. punishment, which the sinne of Adam did contract and deserve; but Christ hath not delivered us from death; godly dye as well as ungodly, beleevers as well as infidels; therefore death was not inflicted, as a pu­nishment for sin.

Christ hath delivered his people from whatsoever is evil in death, he hath taken a­way Resp. 1 al that from death, which is punishment or annoyance; though death be not taken away, death to believers is become gaine, a sweet refreshing sleep the day-break of e­ternall glory.

He will take it away wholly at last: 2 Oh death, where is thy sting? Oh grave, where is thy Victory? Christ at present hath ta­ken away the sting of death, and hereafter he will take away its Victory.

Quest. 20. verse 18.

How are we to understand that speech, It is not good for man to be alone? God crea­ed man alone, and Moses saith that all that God made, was very good.

We may answer it thus, non bonum, is not in Resp. 1 this place as much as malum. The meaning is not, It is not good for man to be alone, [Page 50] viz. it is evil, dishonest, or sinful for man to be alone; but it is not good, viz. 'tis not ex­pedient; bonum est honestum, utile, jucundum.

We may answer it thus, and advance further: solitude was not onely good for 2 man, when he was first created, but also expedient, so long as it pleased God he should be in such a condition; although it was not expedient he should continue in it, because of the propagation of mankind, and of the Church of God which God had determined from eternity, for the advance­ment of his own glory.

Quest. 21. verse 18.

It is said here It is not good for man to be alone; and yet, 1 Cor. 7. 1. the Apostle sayes, It is good for a man not to touch a wo­man.

In the one place Moses speaks of a spe­cifical good, or the good of the kinde; in the Resp. other place the Apostle speaks of a personal good, of the good of some particular per­sons, and in some speciall cases, as in the case of persecution, one in a single conditi­on may better suffer persecution, then one in a married condition.

But is not here a Scripture to justifie a Object. [Page 51] Monastical life, It is good for a man not to touch a woman, and we are all bound to that which is good?

We are all bound to bonum simpliciter to Resp. that which is simply good, but not al­wayes to that which is bonum [...] good in some respect, est fallacia à dicto secundùm quid ad simpliciter.

Quest. 22. verse 18.

God says I will make him an help meet for him; and yet on the sixth day, when God made both the man and the woman, it is said, Let us make man, there in the plural number, here in the the singular.

This was to shew the Unity of essence Resp. in the Trinity of persons.

Quest. 23. verse 18.

How the woman was made an help meet for Adam, when in stead of helping him she deceived him?

Here is, as the Learned call it, fallacia Resp. Accidentis; she that was given by God to man, to be an help meet for him, by the malice of the devil, & the abuse of her own free will became a seducer of him.

[Page 52] Though the woman did deceive the 2 man, yet she did not cease to be an helpe meet for him: because from her loines came the Redeemer.

1 Cor. 7.34. the Apostle saies, The unmar­ried Object. woman careth for the [...]hings of the Lord, but she that is married careth for the things of the World: therefore the wife is rather an impediment to man in the wayes of holi­nesse, then an help meet for him.

Here also is fallacia Accidentis: we Resp. 1 may say here, as our Saviour in another case, From the beginning it was not so?

The Apostles assertion is not univer­sall, 2 as if every one cared more for the things of the world, married, then unmar­ried: experience teacheth us, that many single persons care more for the world, then married persons.

The Apostle speaks not of what 3 ought to be, but what by reason of our corrupt hearts oft comes to passe.

Quest. 24. verse. 19.

'Tis said, That God brought the creatures unto Adam to see what he would call them, which implies Adams great knowledge; [Page 53] now the question is how farre this know­ledge did extend?

There are four kindes of things ex­cepted Resp. from his knowledge in innocen­cy:

  • 1. The decrees of God.
  • 2. His fall
  • 3. The secret thoughts of the heart.
  • 4. The number of all individualls, viz. how many sandes there are in the sea, how many birds in the aire, And
  • 5. Futura contingentia.

Quest 25. verse 21.

Why the Lord caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and why the woman was form­ed, Adam sleeping, rather then Adam wa­king?

Some conceive, because God would discover in a dreame (an usuall way where­by Resp. 1 God revealed himself to our forefathers) unto Adam, that he had formed a woman of his Rib, and that he had given her unto him to be an help meet for him: and hence it was say they, that Adam, when the woman was brought unto him, said, This is now bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh.

Some hold that Adam was cast into a 2 deep sleep, that the Rib of which Eve was [Page 54] made, might be taken from him without paine; Physicians cauterize the part, that they intend to cut off.

Which I rather close with, others 3 thinke that Adam was cast into a deep sleep by God, that he might not be a spectator of his workmanship, but an ad­mirer of it: God would have us take notice of his works, and thereby to admire his goodnesse, and power; but the manner of his working, is one of those secrets that God would have cabinetted and locked up in his own breast; which also might be the reason, why all the creatures were made before Adam was created.

Quest. 26. verse 22.

Why God formed the Woman of a Rib?

To note the cordiall affection, and in­timacy Resp. of Communion that there should be between man and wife: and here Ob­serve,

1. That whereas God made all the An­gells at once, he made but one man, and one woman: to note, that every man should have his own wife, and every wife her own husband.

2. Whereas he might have made the wo­man [Page 55] of the same materials, whereof he made man, he made her of a Rib, to note, that she was bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh.

Quest. 27. verse 24

It is said, A man must leave his Father and mother, and cleave to his wife; and yet God in the fifth Commandement sayes, we must honour Father and mother.

To leave father and mother in this place is not to deny them that reverence and Resp. obedience, that is due unto them [...], to be without naturall affection is a great sinne: but the meaning is, when we are engaged in married relation, we must leave father and mother in two respects.

1 Positively, in regard of cohabitation, a man must leave his fathers house, and dwell with his wife.

2. Comparatively, in regard of that inti­macy of affection, and communion that there should be between a man and his wife.

Degrees of love are not contrary each unto other, and therefore do not mutuò se tollere, mutually expell each other.

In some respect the parents are to be preferred before the wife, viz. in respect [Page 56] of obedience & reverence; in other respects the wife is to be preferred before the pa­rents, in regard of cohabitation, affection, and intimacy of communion.

Quest. 28. verse 24.

It is said; that a man shall leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they two shall be one flesh; and yet it is said, Know ye not that he that is joyned to an Harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one 1 Cor. 6.16 flesh.

Uncleane persons become one flesh Resp. through the sin of man; man and wife be­come one flesh by the institution and ap­pointment of God.

Notes on the third Chapter.

Quest. 1. verse 1.

Whether it were a true Serpent that talked with Eve, or not?

Affir. It was a true Serpent, but posses­sed, Resp. and acted by the devil. That it was a true Serpent, appears,

1. Because here is a comparison made, [Page 57] between the Serpent, and the beasts of the field; if we say the Lyon is more strong then any beast of the field, it is implied that the Lyon is a beast: so when it is said, that the Serpent was more subtile then any beast of the field, it is implied that the Serpent here spoken of, was a beast.

2. The punishment that was afterwards pronounced upon the Serpent, is agreeable to that which we finde by experience ve­rified on the true natural Serpent, viz. Up­on thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the dayes of thy life.

3. It will be hard to say, that Satan had power before the fall, in interiora hominis acccdere, to do him mischief by an inward temptation, and therefore he makes use of a Serpent, something ad extra.

Quest. 2. verse 1.

Why did the Devil make use of a Ser­pent in tempting our first parents to sinne?

Because, though the Serpent was a beast, Resp. yet the most sagacious, and subtile beast of the field, as in the text, & in the opinion of some, the most excellent creature next un­to man: wit unsanctified is a fit toole for the Devil to work withal.

Quest. 3. verse 1.

Why did not Satan rather appear in the shape of a man, or woman, for so he might have gained an opinion with Eve of more excellency and knowledge, then ap­pearing in the forme of a Serpent?

'Tis answered by Learned men, that the Resp. Devil could not appear in humane shape, whilest man was in his integrity, because he was a spirit fallen, and therefore God would not suffer him to appear in any shape, but that which might argue his imperfection, and abasement, which was the shape of a beast: it is observed, that the good An­gels can take upon them no other shape, then the shape of a man, the shape of an infe­riour creature would be unsuitable to their excellent and glorious state: so the De­vill could not appear in the shape of a man, because he was fallen from that state wher­in he was created. 'Tis true, since the fall of man the case is altered, yet it is said, the Devill cannot take upon him the shape of a compleat man, but appears with some deformity or other.

Quest. 4. verse 1.

[Page 59] Seeing it is cleare by the Scripture, that our first parents were seduced by the De­vil, the Question is, why we finde no men­tion of the Devil in this Chapter, but onely of the Serpent?

Some conceive, because Moses herein, Resp. 1 would conforme himself to the weaknesse of the infant state of the Jewish Church, as formerly he made no mention of An­gels, so neither here of Satan being a spi­rit.

Others say, Moses did not write as an In­terpreter, 2 but as an Historian, and there­fore layes downe the matter of fact, as it was presented to Eve: she saw the Serpent, heard the Serpent, treated with the Serpent, therefore Moses in this place makes menti­on onely of the Serpent. So he relates unto us the story of Abraham entertaining three men, which were onely in the shape of men, but indeed Angels: yet he so gives us Gen. 8. the history, that by the circumstances we may easily gather, that it was not the Ser­pent alone that seduced our first parents, but the Devil in the Serpent, for the Serpent being an irrationall creature could not speak, at least not so as to discourse by way of question and reply, and therefore must be acted by some being of an intel­lectuall [Page 60] nature: now if what had been said, had been good, and holy, we should in reason have ascribed it to God, or a good Angel, but being a Lie, and sinfull, we a­scribe it to Satan.

Quest. 5. verse 1.

How could the Serpent be said to speake?

The Devil spake by the Serpent, as he Resp. did afterwards by those that were posses­sed.

Persons possessed had naturall Organs Object. fit for the forming of speech, so had not the Serpent.

'Tis true they had, but the Devil hath Resp. spoke in them, whether they would, or not, yea, when their mouth hath been shut, and their teeth set: now as to the matter in hand, it is all one to have no proper Organs for speech, and not to make use of them.

Thus by the eare death is brought into the world; but blessed be God, through Christ life is brought in by the same doore.

Quest. 6. verse 1.

How came it to passe that Eve was not [Page 61] astonished to hear the Serpent speak, and so dreaded to treat with him?

Some conceive, that in the beginning Resp. 1 it was natural for Serpents to speak: Juli­an laughs at this conceit, and saith he, Quo idiomate usus est serpens? This I am sure, it was not naturall for the Serpent to speake after this manner, by way of rationall dis­course.

Some say, that Eve knew that a spi­rit 2 spake in the Serpent, and upon that ac­count treated with him: but this ties the knot faster then it was, for she might, and indeed she ought, before she entered into a treaty, to consider, why a spirit good or bad, should make use of such an instru­ment.

What if it should be asserted, that Eve did not know but that other creatures 3 might have a faculty to speake as well as man?

Was knowledge imperfect in innocen­cy? Object.

Say some, It is probable Eve had lesse Resp. knowledge then Adam, and yet had as much as was required to the perfection of a woman, and that state and condition that God had placed her in: It was not necessary for her to know things by their [Page 62] causes, and to understand the naturall pro­perties of all the creatures, but she was skil­led in those things that concerned her family, and related to her husband and children.

The state of innocency was free from Object. all kind of evill both of body and minde: error is an evill of the minde; now if Eve did not know but that other creatures might speak as well as the Serpent, she was in an error.

There is a twofold ignorance: Resp.

1▪ Ignorantia pravae disposi [...]ionis, when we are ignorant of that we are bound to know, and this indeed was repugnant to the state of innocency.

2. Ignorantia purae negationis, which is when a person barely not knowes a thing; this the Learned call Nescience: this was not re­pugnant to the state of innocency. Christ as man might be said Nescire, not to know some things, viz. the day of judgement, and yet Christ as man was without sinne, so children in the state of innocency should not have known so much as men, yea, for ought I know, Adam himself might have attained to a greater measure of know­ledge by experience.

3. Though I have high thoughts of those [Page 63] learned Authors that are of this perswasion, yet dogmatically to affirme that Eve was created with lesse knowledge then the wo­men of after-ages have attained to, is an as­sertion hard of digestion to my understan­ding &c.

4. It is likely therefore Eve was some­thing astonished at first at the speech of the Serpent, but being desirous to heare what the Serpent would say, the understanding of a rationall creature being as much delight­ed with knowledge, as the stomack with meat, engaged in a treaty with the Serpent, which was the occasion both of her sinne and punishment.

Quest. 7. verse 1.

Why Satan setteth upon the woman, and not upon the man?

1. Because the precept was given to Adam by God himselfe, say some, Adam Resp. 1 had the precept from God immediately, and so had deeper impressions of it in his soul then Eve that had it by tradition from her husband.

The woman was the weaker vessell, and the Devil delighteth to set upon us 2 where we are weakest, as he set upon Christ [Page 64] when he was an hungry: the Devill will be sure to force us there most, where we are least able to resist.

Adam would sooner be seduced by his 3 wife then by the Serpent. Saul knew what he did when he married his daughter unto David, I will give him her, said Saul, that she may be a snare to him: snares are tied fast 1 Sam. 18. 2 [...]. with a false lovers knot: motions of a wife either to good or evil, are very taking on an husbands heart.

To enhance the sinfulnesse of Eves sin; if the Serpent had tempted Adam, and 4 Adam Eve, more might have been said by her, by way of excuse: As Adam said, The woman thou gavest me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat; so might Eve have said, The man thou gavest me to be my head, my governour, gave me, &c.

Quest. 8. verse 3.

Whether the woman sinned, in saying, neither shall ye touch it?

Some conceive she did: say they Resp. 1

1. She endeavours to cast a reproach upon the wayes of God, as if they were too severe, and strict: as if a woman were forbidden by her husband to go out of the [Page 65] house and she being angry therewith, when questioned about it, should say, that her husband would not suffer her to stirre out of her chamber.

2. She adds to the command of God, God saies, Ye shall not eat, and she saies, Ye shall not touch.

Others conceive she did not sin; and 2 that she did only explaine the precept that God had given them: then the meaning is this, thou shalt not eat of the fruit, yea, thou shalt not take the fruit into thy hand with a purpose to eat thereof; the least motion, and tendency to sin is sinfull, Nemo repentè fit turpissimus.

As for that which is spoken on the other side, it doth not, as I conceive, presse much upon the reason and understanding of a man: For the first, it is but said, not proved; and for the second, to explaine a precept, is not to adde thereunto.

Quest. 9. vers. 3.

Whether Eve spake doubtingly con­cerning the threatening, and the fulfilling thereof, when she said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die? Resp▪

It is the Opinion of those vry Learn­ed, [Page 66] that from this pharase it cannot clearly be demonstrated, that Eve doubted con­cerning the threatening: for,

1. The Septuagint turne the words abso­lutely, [...].

2. The Particle [...] pen, doth not alwaies note dubitation, as, I the Lord do keep it, I will water it every moment, lest any hurt it, I will keep it night and day; where there is Isa. 27. 3. not implied the least doubt, whether the Lord would keep it or not.

And truly I conceive, hitherto Eve can­not be blamed.

Quest. 10. verse 5.

The Serpent sayes to the woman, Ye shall be as gods: which words imply that Ambition was a main ingredient in the sin of our first parents: now the question is, how the desire of being like unto God could be a sin, when God created man in his own likenesse?

For the answer of this question, we must Resp. consider, that God hath two kind of Attri­butes, his Communicable, and his Incom­municable.

Wicked men strive to be like him in his incommunicable attributes, as worship, ho­nour, [Page 67] and glory, and to be loved, and feared above all, in self-dependance, &c. Good men strive to be like him in his com­municable attributes, holiness, mercy, love, patience. The image of God after which man was created, did certainly consist in the participation of those attributes which are communicable Good & bad strive to be like God; the one will be like God in power and glory sicut altissimus; the other in holi­nesse and righteousnesse, sicut sanctissimus.

Quest. 11. verse 6.

Whether the woman sinned before the eating of the forbidden fruit?

Aff▪ And that appears by ver. 6. And Resp. when the woman saw the Tree was good for food, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she saw the tree before, but now she saw it to be good for food, which clearly shewes her judgement to be tainted. How many thousand soules have died of the wound of the eye?

Quest. 12. verse 6.

What was the first sin?

Some conceive, as the Popish Writers, Resp 1 [Page 68] that pride was the first sin: certainly it was a poysonous ingredient in the transgression of our first parents.

Others, as Protestant Writers, that unbe­liefe 2 was the first sin; by unbeliefe they understand a defection, or a putting off from the command of God.

Reasons given by us for our judgement herein, are such as these.

1. The sacred History favours us in it; first the Devil solicites the woman to doubt of the truth of Gods Word, Ye shall not surely dye, and then to pride, for God doth kn [...]w, that in the day you eat thereof, your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

2. It is impossible for the soul to rise up against that command, which at pre­sent it peremptorily and resolvedly purpo­ses 3 to observe: pride and obedience [...] dia­metro pugnant, therefore pride could not in order of Time be before disobedience to the command.

3. Faith is the grace, by which first of all we are united unto God, and so probably unbeliefe the first sin, by which we depart­ed from God.

Rom. 5. 19. The first sin of man is cal­led disobedience, For as by one mans disobe­dience Object. [Page 69] many were made sinners, so by the obedi­ence of one shall many be made righteous, now if the first sin were unbeliefe, neither tru­ly nor properly did the Apostle call it dis­obedience.

Verè et propriè, Truly and properly Resp. 1 ought not to be confounded, many things are not said properly, which notwithstand­ing may be said truly.

Unbeliefe is comprehended under diso­bedience: 2 certainly a slacking of the bent of the spirits of our first parents to that which is good, a departure from the Word of Gods Command, as to the inward man may be called, without impropriety of speech, disobedience.

We say the end is first in intention, and Object. last in execution; we think of the end before we resolve upon the means, therefore it first came into Adams thoughts to be like unto God, and afterwards he resolved up­on a departure from the command, as the means tending thereunto.

We are to distinguish between election Resp. and seduction; between a choice that is made by a man from the dictate of his own spirit, and a choice made from the per­swasion of another: indeed in election, we first think of the end before we resolve up­on [Page 70] the means; but in seduction, or choice upon perswasion, we first set upon the means, without consideration of the end, as a man may first be perswaded to take a convenient delightful walk, and afterwards may be told whither it will bring him, as Isaac was perswaded by his father to go a­long with him, & did readily assent, though he did not know what his fathers ends might be, in perswading him thereunto, as Isaac had high thoughts of his father, and what he said, so Eve of the Serpent.

But you will say, According to this ac­count, Object. in cogitancy or inconfiderateness was the first sin.

Incogitancy is a part of unbeliefe, viz. a Resp. carelesse letting go their hold from that word which God gave our first parents to observe and keep.

Quest. 13. verse 6.

It is said, that the woman did eat and gave also unto her husband, the question is whe­ther she spake something, when she tender­ed the forbidden fruit to her hus­band?

'Tis likely she did, and that she told him Resp. he should be like unto God, if he would eat [Page 71] of that fruit: As appears by the holy jeere, if I may speak it with reverence, that God puts upon the man, Behold, the man is Gen. 3.22. become as one of us: God would not have said this concerning man, if being as God had never come into his thoughts. Quod De­us loquitur cum risu, tu legas cum fletu.

Quest. 14. verse 6.

Whether Adams or Eves sinne was greater?

There are some that set themselves to Resp. extenuate Adams sin, as if he did eat the forbidden fruit, not that he would be like unto God, but purely upon the Account of gratifying his wife.

But I conceive it dangerous to go a­bout such a work as this is: if you handle nettles gently they will sting so much the sorer.

But for the solution of this question, con­sider, there was something that aggravated Adams sin, and something that aggravated Eves.

Adams sin was greater then Eves in this 1 respect, because he was her head, and go­vernour: and truly this consideration accents sinne, and makes it exceeding sin­full.

[Page 72] Eves sinne was greater then Adams, be­cause 2 she was first in the transgression, Prop­ter quod aliquid est tale, id est magis tale. &c.

And truly I conceive, it would not have been an easy matter to have deter­mined whose sin had been greater, had not God done it, as it were to our hands, by inflicting a greater punishment on Eve, then on Adam.

Quest. 15. verse 6.

How man created after Gods Image, in righteousnesse and true Holinesse, could fall into sin? or how Adams understand­ing being in vigore viridi could be entang­led in such a snare and deluded with such a miserable fallacy?

For the answering of this perplexing Resp. question, consider,

1. There is no created good per essen­tiam, but per participationem, and therefore may possibly fall from its goodnesse. God is essentiall holinesse, essentiall goodnesse. A man may be a man, and yet unholy, be­cause holinesse is a quality in man, and not his essence. But goodnesse and holinesse in God is his very nature: and therefore if [Page 73] you deny the holinesse, or goodnesse of God, as much as in you lyes, you put God out of the world; Aug. Cujus participatione justi sunt, ejus comparatione nec justi sunt. Man who is justby participation from God, is not just in comparison with God.

2. Sinne is an irregular act, and it is possible for any agent to act beside the rule, unlesse the will of the agent be the rule ac­cording to which it acts. And therefore all intelligent beings, consider them as to their natures, may sinne, except God him­selfe, because his will alone is the rule of his own actions. The reason why the Ar­tificer sometimes works irregularly is, be­cause his hand is one thing, and his rule is another but if it were possible for his hand to be his rule, he could not work a­misse.

3. Though our first parents were created holy, yet they were created mutable; and although they had not an inclination to sin, for that pronita [...] ad malum non fluit ex principilis, naturae integrae; it would be too injurious to the God of nature to imagine he should frame evil: yet they had a power to sin if they would.

4. The Learned conclude, that the un­derstanding of Adam was defective in its [Page 74] office by a negligent non attendency, and so sinned against God: yet so as that this negligence did not go before the first sin, but was part of it.

Quest. 16. vers. 6.

In this verse you read that Adam and Eve both sinned, and yet the Apostle tells us, that by one mans disobedience many were made sinners? Rom 5.19

The Apostle speaks of one man, because they two are one flesh. Resp. 1

Adam being the superiour, and one that 2 should have ruled and guided his wife, and not his wife him, the breach of the Law is attributed unto the man.

Quest. 17. verse 6.

Whether the Church militant be al­wayes visible?

Neg. From this very text, when Adam Resp. and Eve were excommunicated from the presence of God, and cut off from the Or­dinances, where was then the Church visi­ble?

You may as well say the invisible Object. Church was cut off.

[Page 75] Neg. The Angels belonged to the invi­sible Resp. Church.

But Adam and Eve were not a Church, Object. two cannot make a Church.

Neg. Paul calls a family a Church, as, Resp. Greet the Church that is in their house. Salute Rom. 16.5 the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Col. 3.15. Nymphas, and the Church which is in his house. Now we know, two, viz. a man and his wife, may constitute a fami­ly.

Quest. 18. verse 7.

It is said that the eyes of them both were o­pened, and they knew they were naked. Did not they know they were naked be­fore?

Yes, questionlesse they both saw, and Resp. knew they were naked before they had sinned, else why is it said, The man and his wife were both naked, and were not asha­med? Gen. 2.25. but now they saw it with shame, which they did not before; sin and shame are twins, and came into the world together. As there was no palenesse to be seene in the state of innocency, no tremblings, no shiverings, no tears, no sighs, no blushes: so not the least tincture of shame. Paradise had so much of the Lilly, that it had nothing of [Page 76] the Rose; the nakednesse of creation needed no Covering, nakednesse was then an Or­nament; man was richly attired when he had no garments.

Quest. 19. verse 7.

Why our first parents made themselves aprons of figge-leaves rather then of the leaves of any other Tree?

Some conceive, that the tree of know­ledge Resp. 1 was a figge-tree, and that he took the leaves of this Tree to cover his naked­nesse; but it seems to be unlikely, that when by wofull experience they had▪ contracted and brought upon themselves so much mischeife by eating of the fruit of the Tree of knowledge, that they should repaire to the same tree for leaves, to make themselves aprons.

They sewed figge-leaves together, be­cause 2 they were fit for that purpose for which they intended them, the leaves of that Tree being broad in our own Coun­trey, and questionlesse in the East, especi­ally in Paradise, broader then ours

Quest. 20. verse 8.

How are we to understand that passage, [Page 77] And they heard the voice of the Lord God, walking in the Garden?

We have often mention in the Scripture Resp. of the voice of God. The thunder is cal­led the voice of God.

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters, Psal. 29.3. the God of Glory thundereth. Sometimes the Word of God, though it be delivered by a man, is called the voice of God; Samu­el also said unto Saul, The Lord sent me to an­oint 1 Sa. 15.1. thee to be King over his people, now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the Lord.

The Learned conceive, that the voice of God in this place is not to be taken for a sound, or a noyse, but for an articulate voice: but now whether this voice was formed in the aire, As at the time of the Baptisme and transfiguration of our Savi­our; or whether it was formed in some bo­dy, God at that time assuming the visible shape of a man, is not very cleare; yet the latter seems to be probable.

1. He deals with man by way of judiciall processe as a man, first he calls him to an account for the crime he had committed, and then pronounces sentence against him.

2. Ye read of the Lord God walk­ing in the garden, which seems as it were to point toward this opinion.

Quest. 21. verse 8.

'Tis said, They heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden, and yet it is said, in Jeremiah, that the Lord filleth heaven and earth. Jer. 23.24.

The Divine essence fills heaven and Resp. earth, and yet that visible forme whereby God manifests his presence, may be cir­cumscribed to a place, and so it was in this Case.

Quest. 22. verse 8.

It is said, they hid themselves from the presence of the Lord, and yet the Psalmist Ps. 139.7, 8. sayes, Whither shall I go from thy spirit, or whither shall I flee from thy presence, &c.

'Tis true, we cannot hide our selves from Gods presence, yet we may from that vi­sible Resp. forme that God appears in for the present, and possibly this may be the meaning in this place, &c.

In vaine doth the sinner endeavour to run away from God and the terrours of Conscience. This is just as if the wounded Deere should go about to run from the deadly Arrow that sticks in his side; this is like the fish, which swimmeth to the length [Page 79] of the Line with the Hooke in its mouth. The best way to run from God is to run to God, viz. from his wrath to his mercy. To close and get in avoids the blow: when a storme arises the Mariner puts forth to sea.

Quest. 23. verse 9.

God calls man, Adam, where art thou? and yet in Jeremiah, Mine eyes are upon all their wayes, neither is there iniquity hid Jer. 16.17. from mine eyes.

Non interogat ut ipse sciat, sed ut homi­nem Resp. 1 scire et agnoscere faciat: God doth not propound this question to Adam that he might know, but that man might know that he did know.

Non est vox ignorantis, sed ad judicium 2 citantis: It is not the voice of one that desired to be informed, but of a Judge cal­ling man to an account for the transgres­sion of the Command.

Quest. 24. verse 9.

Why doth not God call Eve by her name, as well as Adam, they having both sinned?

Some say, to note, it concernes the hus­band Resp. [Page 80] to take heed not onely of what is done by himselfe, but also by his wife, or family; he may be called to an account for it.

Quest. 25. vers. 10.

It is said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, did not Adam feare God before?

Yes, but he feared him before with a Resp. sonne-like filial feare; now with a base un­worthy servile feare: He feared him be­fore, because of his goodnesse, now he fears him because of his vengeance: so when the image of God is repaired,

The people of God have not a slavish, wiredrawen, and compelled affection to­wards God, but their affections freely melt and drop towards God, as the honey drops out of the Comb; feare, and love must be mixed, and tempered together; in­deed they do not well asunder, as if a man would make the most perfect beautifull colour, he would temper the purest white, and the fairest red together; such is that for which the spouse giveth her beloved the Commendation, that he was candidus et rubicundus, white and ruddy, feare without love would set us in the forlorne hope, and [Page 81] precipitate us into despaire; and love with­out fear, would make us wanton and se­cure; therefore there is not onely magni­tude, but pulchritude in God; he is not one­ly great to cause us to feare him, but he is good to cause us to love him.

Quest. 26. verse 12.

The man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the Tree, and I did eat. And yet the Apostle saith, 1 Tim. 2. 14. That Adam was not deceived, but the wo­man.

The Apostle may speake of the man­ner Resp. 1 of the seduction of our first parents, Adam was not deceived, viz. by the Serpent, but the woman.

The Serpent deceived Eve, but Eve 2 could not in propriety of speech be said to deceive Adam: for that person may be said properly to deceive, who perswades to something false, and injurious animo fallen­di, with an intention to wrong another, and in this sense the Serpent may be said to deceive Eve. But Eve had no thoughts of over-reaching her husband, therefore A­dam was not deceived, but the woman.

Quest. 27. v [...]rse 14.

Why the Serpent was not examined by God as well as the man, or woman?

The examination of the man and wo­man Resp. was in order to their repentance, and so by Consequence in order to their salva­tion, but God would shew no mercy to the Serpent.

Quest. 28. verse 14.

Upon whom this curse was pronounced, upon the Serpent or Satan, or Satan, and the Serpent?

Some would have it onely spoken of the Resp. 1 brute Serpent, and the Jews are very zeal­ous in the maintaining of this asserti­on.

But if this were a truth, then it would follow that the brute creature that Satan made use of, should be punished; but Satan himselfe, who was the principall actor in tempting our first parents to sinne, should escape unpunished

Some would have it onely spoken of 2 the spirituall Serpent the Devill, because the brute was onely passive, and abused by the [Page 83] Devil, for the calling on of his sinfull de­signes.

But neither can this be; for if this curse had not beene pronounced upon a true Serpent, why should this Serpent be reckoned amongst the beasts of the field? And why doth not Moses make mention of Satan, in this whole Chapter.

Some would divide the controversie, applying the first part of the curse in the 14. verse, to the brute Serpent, and the 3 latter in the 15. verse to the Devil, the spi­ritual Serpent.

But neither can this be; for,

1. The subject the Spirit of God speakes of, is not changed, but the same in the 14. and 15. verses. ver 14. The Lord said to the Serpent, Thou art cursed above all cattel. And, verse. 15. I will put enmity between thee and the woman. &c?

2. It is cleare, that the words in the 15. ver. without any straining are applicable to the brute Serpent: viz. It shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heele; you know the Ser­pent being a creature going upon his belly is obnoxious to be tread upon, and to have his head bruised; but being not able to reach mans head, it is said of the Serpent, that it should bruife mans heels.

[Page 84] Some conceive that the curse was pro­nounced 4 both upon the brute Serpent and the spirituall Serpent, and this I hold to be the Truth: the Devil when he beguiled man, came not as a naked spirit, but in the shape and figure of a Serpent: and there­fore that his punishment might be suitable and answerable to his offence, he was to re­ceive his doome likewise under the figure of a serpent.

Quest 28. verse 14.

Whether Satan was not under the curse of God before this was pronounced?

Affir. but, Resp.

1. After he had tempted man to sin, his curse was augmented.

2. In this verse God declares the curse pronounced upon the Serpent to be irre­pealable: Upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the dayes of thy life.

We may observe, that there is a great difference between the sentence prenoun­ced upon the man and woman, and the sentence pronounced upon the Ser­pent.

1. You have a curse pronounced [Page 85] upon the Serpent, but none upon the person of man or woman.

2. The punishment inflicted upon them is temporall, but the punishment inflicted upon the Serpent is eternall: which is noted unto us by that expression, All the dayes of thy life, viz. as long as Satan hath a being.

Quest. 29. verse 14

How it could be just with God to pu­nish the brute Serpent being an unreason­able creature, knowing neither good nor e­vil, and had no will to sin, but spake meer­ly as it was acted, and possessed by Satan?

Why should we question the justice of Resp. 1 God here more then in Adams Censure, vers. 17. where the whole earth was cursed for Adams sake? what had the earth done? or how was it guilty of Adams transgression? And afterwards we read And behold, I, even I do bring a flood of waters on the Earth to destroy all flesh: Gen 6.17. How were the beasts, the creeping things, the fowles of the Aire partakers of mans wickednesse?

God cursed the Serpent, as well as Satan, 2 because Satan made use of the Serpent, as his instrument to tempt our first parents [Page 86] to sin against God; God was so displeas­ed with sinne, that he would curse not on­ly the principall cause of it, but the instru­mentall also; so in other cases God doth not onely punish the offender, but the instrument made use of in the com­mitting of the offence; As if a man de­fil'd himself with a beast, if a man lye with a Lev. 20.15 beast, he shall surely be put to death, and ye shall slay the beast. We may see this in a Case where there is no dispute; when a man hath committed murder, his body suffers; now what is the body, but an in­strument the soule makes use of? The hand cannot move otherwise, then as it is acted by the soul, yet this would not be a plea in humane Courts: Oh see the vilenesse of our hearts! we can reason against God, when in the very same case we dare not reason against man.

Quest. 30. verse 14.

Whether the Serpent went upon his bel­ly before the curse?

Some conceive that it did, but that Resp. 1 this was made ignominious, and cursed to him after the fal of man; and they illustrate this two manner of wayes.

[Page 87] 1. Nakednesse was naturall to man at first, and yet afterwards he was ashamed of it, and it became his punishment.

2. Briars and thornes were created be­fore mans fall, but afterwards became a curse.

But to both these instances we may give this answer:

1. That nakednesse simply considered was not the cause of mans shame, but nu­ditas turpis. Adamus videns faedos, et inordinatos membrorum motus, pudefactus est.

2. For briars and thornes, consider them in puris naturalibus, in their pure naturalls, and so they did not become a curse; but as after the fall, they grew out of their proper places, and were blended and mix­ed with the fruits of the earth, for the pu­nishment of man, &c.

Therefore others conceive, that the 2 Serpent did not go on his breast till the curse, but had a body erected as man hath: and they render these reasons amongst o­thers.

1. We know the more excellent, and sub­lime the nature of a creature is, the more it raiseth it self upwards; the more ignoble and base, the more it falls down-ward; this [Page 88] we see in the Elements; the fire the most excellent, & operative of the four, raiseth it self above the rest; the earth the most unactive and basest of all, the low­est.

2. As there is this difference amongst e­lements, so among living creatures; the basest is the most creeping, as wormes, &c. whilest the noble Lyon advanceth his head and breast, so farre as the frame of his body is capable; so man being of all creatures most excellent, is therefore of all others most advanced in body.

Os homini sublime dedit coelúmque tueri Jussit.—

The Serpent therefore being of a sub­lime nature, insomuch that the Scripture sayes, it was more subtile then any beast of the field, the frame and shape of his bo­dy was suitable thereunto.

Quest. 31. verse 14.

In what sense we must understand this phrase, Dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life; when we find, that Serpents feed upon herbes, and devour other creatures also?

These two phrases, Upon thy belly shalt Resp. thou go, and dust shalt thou eat, ought to be [Page 89] joyned together in the opening of this Scripture, the one ought to be considered as the cause, and the other as the ef­fect.

So that eating dust in this place is not so to be understood, as if the Serpent should live, and feed onely upon dust; but that the Serpent going upon his belly, should be forced to eat dust, viz. take in dust into his mouth whether he will or not: the Learned phrase it thus, Haec verba non re­feruntur ad alimentum, sed ad incommodum, et velut coactam terrae in os receptionem.

Against this Exposition some object, Object. and say, that we have a promise concern­ing the happy and peaceable condition of the Church in the latter dayes; and a­mongst other things it is said, The dust shall be the Serpents meat: The Wolfe, and Is 65.25. the Lambe shall feed together, and the Lyon shall eat straw like the bullock, and dust shall be the Serpents meat.

These words are not to be understood li­terally, Resp. but allegorically, as the very expres­sions in the text clearly intimate: and when it is said, The dust shall be the Serpents meat, the meaning is no more but this, that in those dayes man shall not need to feare hurt from any creature: the Serpent it selfe [Page 90] shall be confined to his dust; and shall not be able to prejudice man in the least.

Quest. 32. verse 14.

Seeing this sentence was pronounced both upon the brute Serpent, and the spirituall Serpent, the question may be, how this phrase, Upon thy belly shalt thou go, & dust shalt thou eat, can be accommodated unto Satan?

Per analogiam, in a spirituall sense we Resp. shall finde that the Scripture makes use of such expressions as these are, to note unto us, the lowest, and most ignomini­ous debasement; when God threatens hea­vy judgements against Jerusalem, mark how he phrases it, Thou shalt be brought down, and shalt speak out of the ground, thy Isa 24.4. speech shall be low, out of the dust, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust. The Spirit of God seemes to allude to the car­riage of a poore captive taken in warre, and lying prostrate at the feet of the Con­querour, hardly daring so much as to whisper out of the dust: You may finde also expressions something like to these, Esay 49.23. Lam. 3.29. Mic. 7.17.

So then these expressions signifie the [Page 91] debasement of Satan from his primitive excellency. A wonderful stoop indeed this was, when that which was advanced as high as heaven, was made to fall down as low as hell.

It is the observation of a learned Au­thor, that as food is made use of for the repairing, and preservation of nature, so the goodnesse or badnesse thereof doth make the temper of the body bet­ter, or worse: hence according to the degrees of excellency in the creatures, their food is finer, or courser. Plants suck moisture from the earth, beasts live upon plants, man of beasts, fowle, and fish: so that this expression, Dust shalt thou eat, notes unto us, the lownesse, and basenesse of the Serpent.

Quest. 33. Verse 15.

What is meant by the woman in this verse?

It seemes to be that woman, with whom Resp. the Serpent had treated, viz. Eve: as if God had said Seeing thou hast by a trea­ty with the woman, tempted her to sinne, I will put enmity between thee, and the woman.

[Page 92] Now the woman is mentioned, and not the man, not because God had not put enmity between the man and the Ser­pent, as well as the woman and the Ser­pent, but because Eve was immediately seduced by the Serpent, the man by the perswasion of his wife.

Quest. 34. Verse 15.

Whether we may not with the Church of Rome, expound the woman of the Vir­gin Mary?

Neg. And amongst others this reason Resp. may be rendred, The enmity the Spirit of God speaks of in this verse, was imme­diately to follow the curse: now the Vir­gin Mary was not borne many hundreds of years afterward.

But God speaks in the future tence, Object. I will put enmity between thee and the wo­man, &c.

God speaks in the future tence, when Resp. 1 he pronounces that other part of the curse upon the Serpent, Vers. 14. Upon thy bel­ly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat: now this curse immediately followed upon the sentence, and why not the other?

God speakes in the future tence, to 2 [Page 93] note the duration, and continuance of this curse.

Quest. 35. Verse 15.

What is meant by the Serpents seed?

This cannot be expounded, but in a Resp. spiritual sense, for daemones propriè semen non habent, nec gignunt sibi similes: there­fore we are to understand by the Ser­pents seed, the reprobate wicked world: They which imitate God, and obey him, are called his seed, or his children in the Scripture, as, Be ye followers of God, as dear children: so they that imitate the Eph. 5.1. devil, and obey him, are called his seed, or his children, as, Ye are of your father Joh. 8. 44 the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He that committeth sinne is of the devil. 1 Joh▪ 3. 8.

Quest. 36. Verse 15.

What is meant by the seed of the wo­man?

First, and principally Jesus Christ. Resp. 1

It implieth all the Elect, viz. all Eves 2 seed, that should not become the seed of the Serpent.

By the seed of the woman can be Object. meant onely Christ, who was so the seed [Page 94] of the woman, that he was not of the man.

'Tis true Christ was born of a Virgin, Resp. and was so the seed of the woman, that he was not of the man: but yet that by the seed of the woman, Christ singularly, and individually should be meant by the Spirit of God in this place, is not suffici­ently demonstrated by this phrase: and the reason is this, because such persons as have been conceived, and born in an ordinary way, have been called the seed of the woman, or that which amounts thereunto: so, Adam knew his wife again, Gen. 4.25. and she bare a sonne, and called his name Seth, for God, faith she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew: there you have Eve calling Seth her seed: so the wicked Jews. are Isa. 57.3. called the sonnes of the forceresse.

Quest. 37. Verse 15.

How is this particle it, to be expound­ed, It shall bruise thy head?

Some, and those very learned, though Resp. 1 they expound the seed of the woman col­lectively, and take it for Christ and his Church, this particle notwithstanding, say [Page 95] they, referres unto Christ singularly, and individually considered.

Their reasons are three,

Say they, the Septuagint renders it Arg. 1 [...]; and though the Greek word which is used for seed, be [...], not [...], yet the pronoune relative is of the mas­culine gender [...]; now if it had been to be taken collectively as the seed of the woman before, it would have been [...].

But we must consider, that both in La­tine, Resp. and Greek Authours pronouns many times agree rather cum re, then cum voce: and so it is in this case: by the seed of the woman, though we do not say, is meant Christ onely, yet we say Christ principally, and [...] clearly re­lates to Christ: now that in Latine, and Greek Authors, pronouns do not on­ly convenire cum verbo, but sometimes cum re, appears: Terence hath such a phrase as this, Ubi est scelus qui me perdi­dit? And as for the Greek, frequent in­stances we may finde in the New Testa­ment: Mat. 28.19 as, [...] Luk. 8. 5. [...]. And so in Luke, where the noune [...] is of the masculine gender, and [...] the neuter.

[Page 96] It is opposed to one individual Serpent, Arg. 2 it shall bruise thy head.

The seed of the Serpent is implied Resp. 1 there, though not expressed for as the Serpent not alone, but with his seed shall bruise the heele of the seed of the woman; so Christ the seed of the woman, not in­dividually considered, but with his seed shall break the Serpents head.

For the further clearing of this, the seed of the woman, may be said to bruise the Serpents head two manner of wayes.

1. As the Lord Jesus spoiled principa­lities and powers, and blotted out the handwriting of Ordinances against us, and nailing it to his crosse.

2. As he overcomes the plots, the assaults, the rebellions of this conquered, and bro­ken enemy.

In both senses we may say of the seed of the woman collectively considered, it shall break the Serpents head, It, viz. Christ and his Church, head and mem­bers.

In the first sense the Saints break the Serpents head in Christ, in the second sense Christ breaks the Serpents head in and with his Saints.

In the first sense Christ breaks the Ser­pents [Page 97] head, without the actual concur­rence of his Saints: it is true, the Saints do it in him, but they do not concurre with him in it: (as all of us sin­ned in Adam, though we did not actu­ally concurre with him in his sinne) and in this sense he is said to tread the Wine­presse alone▪

In the second sense, Christ breaks the Serpents head, with the actuall concur­rence of his Saints: not that Christ receives any help from them for to do it, but be­cause he is pleased to make use of them in the doing of it, and in this sense is that Scripture to be understood; The God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet short­ly. Rom. 16. 20. Christ hath throwen Satan down, and wounded him, and he will enable his peo­ple to keep him down, and tread upon him; As Ioshua caused the Princes of Israel to set their feet on the very necks of the five Kings.

They urge, to break the Serpents head notes a Divine power, and therefore it is Arg. 3 to be understood onely of Christ.

This Argument would be something Resp. 1 against those that shut out Christ from this great work, but not in the least against those who say, the Church breakes the [Page 98] Serpents head, but that power whereby it doth it, is derived from Christ.

Since therefore besides what hath been already said according to the judgement of those who hold this first assertion, the seed of the woman is to be taken collect­ively therefore.

I rather close with others as Learned, who say, that this particle it, is to be expoū ­ded 2 collectively also; for, it being a pro­noune relative, and pointing to the seed of the woman, which the Adversary saith is to be expounded collectively, I conceive we cannot without straining of the Gram­mar of the Text, interpret it otherwise.

Nor doth this detract from the honour of Christ, the victory is Christs princi­pally, ours onely relatively, and as his members.

Nor doth this advantage the Jew: for according to this construction, in this Scripture you have a Prophecy concern­ing the Messiah: It is said here, The seed of the woman shall breake the Serpents head; now this being a work above the spheare of the activity of any creature, it will follow that the Messiah is princi­pally intended in this promise, or Prophe­cy.

Quest. 37. verse 15.

Why we may not translate this verse ac­cording to the vulgar Latin, she, viz. the Virgin Mary shall breake the Serpents head?

Because according to the Hebrew text Resp. 1 it is not she, but according to our translati­on it.

Because this, detracts much from the 2 honour of Christ. It was a rare saying of Seneca, Similiter esse exprehensibilem, ni­miam laudationem et immoderatam vitupe­rationem.

I but say the Romanists, Christ did it by Object. his own power, the Virgin Mary by Christs.

If you say that of the blessed Virgin, Resp. as we have formerly concerning other Saints of God, we have no cause to be of­fended: but they intend more by it then this comes to.

Doth not the worth and eminency of a Object. childe cast a shine of honour upon the Pa­rents? If it be said of Abraham, In thee shall all Nations be blessed, though it was not Abraham that made them blessed, but his seed, why not of the Virgin Mary, In thee shall the Serpents head be broken, [Page 100] though she did not do it, but Christ?

It is one thing to say, a parent is blessed in a child, or to say that in a parent a Na­tion Resp. is blessed because of a child, and to attribute the worthy atchievements of the child to the parent: as if a woman should beare a sonne, who when he came to years ceserved worthily of the Common-wealth, a shine of honour would be cast upon this woman because of her son: but we could not with any sense, nor indeed with hone­sty ascribe the worthy acts of the sonne to the mother.

Thus they endeavour to paint over their black and horrid blasphemies, with the fairest colours they will take: The chimney-piece is commonly the fairest part of the Roome, and yet it covereth the foulest and blackest place.

Quest. 38. verse 15.

Why is it said, I will put enmity between thee, and the woman in the Abstract?

To note unto us the bitter, inveterate, Resp. irreconcileable hatred of the wicked against the godly; enemies may be reconciled, but enmity cannot, &c.

It is observable, that profane persons, [Page 101] Hereticks, blasphemous, Popish, & supersti­tious persons are more loving, & favourable each to other (though vastly differing in their judgment) then either of them to the people of God. Edom, and Ishmael, Moab, & the Hagarens, Gebal, Ammon, Amaleck, & the Philistines the men of Tyre, & Ashur, had each several gods, yet all conspired against the true God. Ps. 83. 5, 6, 7, 8. They have consulted to­gether with one consent, they are confederate against thee. The Tabernacles of Edom, & the Ishmaelites, of Moab & the Hagarens, Gebal, and Ammon, and Amaleck, the Philistines with the inhabitants of Tyre. Ashur also is joyned with them, they have holpen the children of Lot. Darknesse and darknesse agree better together, then light and darknesse.

Quest. 39. vers. 15.

Whether man had any share in this curse pronounced in these two verses?

Man hath a share in that which was pro­nounced Resp. against the Serpent; but all his share is mercy: for though it be a curse to the Serpent, yet a blessing to man; The truth is, there seems to be spirituall checker-work in this 15. verse, halfe white, [Page 102] and half black, much of judgement and ter­rour, and much of mercy and consolation, resembling Moses, who saved the Israelites, and slew the Egyptians.

In this verse, you have the Sun in a cloud, the Gospel with its masque on: the day-break of that glorious mystery which was hid in God from before the foundation of the world, the light whereof, though it were faint, and shadowy in regard of our Noon-day-brightnesse, yet at that time, through the help of the prospective of faith they might see thereby,

1. Mans Redemption, from the Tyran­ny of Satan, and by consequence from sin, death, and hell, noted in that expression of breaking the Serpents head.

2. That man should be redeemed by a Mediatour, viz. by the intervention of the seed of the woman.

3. That this Mediator should be true man, intimated by the seed of the woman, and that he should have a divine power, being able to break the Serpents head, which is tantum mount to [...], God­man.

4. That this Redemption should be wrought in a way of suffering, intimated by that expression, Thou shalt bruise his heel.

[Page 103] 5. That none should have benfit by this Redemption, but the elect, intimated by the seed of the woman.

6. That this Redemption is an act of free grace; as soon as man had sinned, God makes a gracious promise of the Messiah, (no possibility of merits interven­ing)

7. That the Devil and his Angels have no interest in the free grace, and mercy of God in Christ; He took not on him the nature of Angels, but became the seed of the woman: We have a saying in nature, Cor­ruptio optimi est pessima; when Satan sinned against God, the most excellent nature was defiled, and so fell under the heaviest doome.

Quest. 40. verse 15.

Why the promise made concerning the Messiah was so dark and hard to be un­derstood?

1. Propter Diabolum, in regard of the De­vil, that he might be exercised with per­petuall feare, and suspect every child that was borne into the world to be the Mes­siah: the Doctrine of the Messiah was a Eph. 3.9. mystery hid in God.

[Page 104] 2. Propter parentes, in regard of our first parents, that God might exercise their faith, and the faith of their holy seed, and that their desires might be enflamed after a clearer discovery of this mystery: the A­postle Peter tells us, that the Prophets en­quired, and searched diligently after the grace 1 Pet. 1.10. of Christ.

3. Propter Christum, in regard of Christ himself: for look as it is with School-Ma­sters, they will reserve the reading of the most Learned Lectures for themselves: So Christ is our great Rabbi; All were his Ushers that were before, they taught the punies an inferiour Lecture of the Law and Prophets; but the Gospel, as to the sublimest and most mysterious part of it, Christ hath reserved for to unfold himself: It is said, The Law having a shadow Heb. 10.1. of good things to come, and not the very i­mage of the things, &c. In this ver. you have mention made of the shadow, and the i­mage: The thing it self was not yet come; the Jewes had the shadow, and we the i­mage, now look how much an image or the picture of a man goes beyond his sha­dow, so much doth the discovery of Christ now, go beyond the discoveries of him then; so in another place, God who at [Page 105] sundry times, and in divers manners, spake Heb. 1.1. in times past unto the fathers by the Prophets, hath in these last dayes spoken unto us by his Son; God who by piece meale, drop by drop, now a drop, and then a drop, spake unto our fore-fathers by the Prophets, hath in these last times spoken more fully by his Sonne. When this King came, all the cocks ran with wine: as Iacob before he was borne, put forth his hand, so Christ before he was borne, did as it were put forth his hand to the Jews, they could see something of Christ, but unto us a Sonne is borne, unto us a child is given. Our fa­thers went to heaven by Candle-light, how sad will it be if we should go to Hell by day-light?

Quest. 41. verse 16.

Whether the woman should have con­ceived, and brought forth in sorrow if she had not sinned?

Neg. For although now her pain, and sor­row Resp. arises from naturall causes, yet it may well be questioned whether this was natu­ral at first: for seeing we find by experience that other creatures bring forth without pain, it doth not imply a contradiction, that [Page 106] the constitution of the body of woman, might be such at first, as she might con­ceive and bring forth without sorrow: and therefore we need not say, as some, that woman should have brought forth by a miracle, if she had not sinned, &c.

Quest. 42. verse 16.

It is said here, Thy desire shall be to thy Husband, and he shall rule over thee: Now the question is, how that could be inflict­ed as a punishment upon the woman, which was suitable to her condition in the state of innocency?

The subjection of the woman to her Resp. husband, was not repugnant to the state of innocency; but then, as the authority of the man would have been used with justice, and kindnesse, so the obedience of the woman would have been exerci­sed with pleasure and cheerfullnesse.

The truth is, though this be the punish­ment of the woman, yet those who have good husbands have not the like share in it, with those who have bad. A good man dares not but carry himself as a man of knowledge towards his wife, and make her yoke as easy as may be: It is remarkable [Page 107] when the Apostle had bid wives, Submit Col. 3. 18, 19 your selves unto your husbands, as it is fit in the Lord, he doth not say, Husbands, rule over your wives, for that they will do fast e­nough without bidding; but, Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter to them.

Quest. 43. verse 17.

Why doth the Lord in pronouncing the sentence upon the man, insert the cause, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife?

That God might convince man of the Resp. vanity and weaknesse of that excuse which he made, why he sinned against God, as verse 12. The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the Tree, and I did eat.

Let us have a care of carnall shifts, and excuses; when God calls us to an account, these will not stand us in stead: there was never any came to Hell, but they had some seeming pretence for coming thi­ther.

Pilate could not wash off the guilt, when he washed his hands: Saint Paul exhorts, Be not deceived, God is not mocked: as in Gal. 6. 7. divers other things, the deceitfulnesse of [Page 108] our hearts shews it selfe so in this, viz. the forging of idle reasons, to satisfie, and beare out our selves in the neglect of duties commanded by the Word of God; and if you consult the context, you will finde, it is about paying the Minister his dues: Let him that is taught in the word, com­municate unto him that teacheth in all good things; Now people are very apt to verse 6. finde excuses, that they may save their purse, and if it be possible satisfie Con­science; but the Apostle exhorts them not to put a cheat upon their soules, Be not deceived, saith he, God is not mocked.

Quest. 44. verse 18.

God sayes, Thou shalt eat the herbe of the field: why? should not man have eat of the herb if he had not sinned? Did not God say, Behold, I have given you every herbe bearing seed, which is upon the face of all Gen. 1. 29. the earth, and every tree in the which is the fruit of a Tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat?

Very true, but here when God sayes, Resp. Thou shalt eat the herbe of the field, the meaning is, thou shalt not eat of the herbs or fruits of Paradise.

Quest. 45. vers. 19.

How this curse can be verified concerning man, That in the sweat of his browes he should eat his bread, when many neither labour, nor sweat, and yet have bread e­nough?

As for idle persons, whilest they think Resp. 1 to shake off that yoke that God hath put upon their necks, they bind it faster, and make it heavier: To a person of any inge­nuity idlenesse is a toyle, nor is a man more weary then when he doth no­thing.

We must distinguish of a three-fold la­bour. 2

1. Labor Oeconomicus or mechanicus, the labour of mechanicks, as we call them, or handicrafts-men; of this the Apostle speaks, Let him that stole steale no more; Eph. 4.28. but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good.

2. Labor Politicus, the labour of Magi­strates and Governours: so the Apostle speaking of the Magistrate, He is the Mi­nister of God to thee for good; but if thou do Rom. 13.4 that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vaine; for he is the Minister of God, &c.

[Page 110] 3. Labor Ecclesiasticus, the labour of Mi­nisters; we may observe that whilest the world takes this to be an easie calling, the Spirit of God in the Scripture frequently speaks of the labour, and the work that doth attend it: He that desires the office of a Bishop, desires a good work. And, The work­man is worthy of his hire. And, They that rule well are worthy of double honour, especi­ally they that labour in the Word, and do­ctrine.

Ministers are called Starres, now the Starres are in continuall motion for the good of the Universe; they are to cry a­loud, and to lift up their voice like a Isa. 58.1. trumpet, Durante pugnâ non cessat Tuba: The trumpet must be sounding all the while the battell is fighting. The Church of God is Gods husbandry, and the Ministers are his husbandmen.

—Redit agricolis labor actus in Orbem.

The husbandman hath never done his work, but the end of one task is still the beginning of another: so it fares with the Ministers of the Gospel, sometimes they are instructing poor ignorant souls, & then they are like Starres that shine in a cold winters night; another while convincing gain-sayers; then they are like those Starres [Page 111] that fought in their course against Sisera; every man must be accountable for his i­dle words, and a Minister for his idle si­lence: Qui claves habent Ecclesiae ostia suorum labiorum aperiant: A Minister had better be worne out with whetting, then with rusting.

A way then with the fanatick Spirits of our dayes, who call upon Ministers to work with their hands, as if there were no other labour, but hand-labour. Consi­der,

1. They confound those things that God would have distingushed: there is the labour of the head and brain, as well as of the hand.

2. They overthrow (as much as in them lyes) the well-being, if not the being of Kingdomes, States, Common-wealths in which they live: for we stand in as much need of the Magistrate, and Minister as we do of the Husbandman, and handy­craftsman.

3. Aaron with his posterity were Priests, Ioshua, David, Iosias were Magistrates, yet it might be said of them, that they are their bread in the sweat of their browes.

Quest. 46 vers 19.

It is said here, In the sweat of thy brows thou shalt eat thy bread; and yet our Saviour hath taught us to pray, Give us this day our daily bread. If we earne our bread with our labour, how is it a gift?

We earne it of man, but not of God, from man it is a debt, but from God it is a Resp. 1 gift.

It is an act of free grace, that we have bread for our labour; God might have 2 said that we should labour, and sweat, and after all we should eat husks with hogs; as the Prodigall, or grasse with the Oxe, as Ne­buchadnezzar: that in the sweat of our brows we eat bread, is a mercy.

As the Scripture speaks of bread, so of the staffe and stay of bread: For be­hold, the Lord, the Lord of hosts doth take a­way 3 from Jerusalem, and from Judah, the Isay. 3.1. stay, and staffe, the whole stay of bread. And the truth is, a man is strengthened more by the staffe that is in his body, then by the staffe that is in his hand; it is not the corne, and floure, but the staffe of bread, which supports the life, and that is not any thing that comes out of the [Page 113] earth, but the blessing of God, which comes down from heaven. The creature cannot hold up it selfe, much lesse con­tribute to the subsistence of other things, unlesse God continue the influence of his blessing upon it. It is the observation of a Learned Author, As soone as ever Christ cursed the figge-tree it withered, and dried Ma. 11.20. up from the roots, to shew, that it was not the root alone, but the blessing of Christ which did support the figge-tree, it is pro­nounced Hos. 4. 10. as a curse, They shall eat, and not have enough; and again, Ye shall eat, and not Lev. 26. 26. be satisfied: when I have broken the staffe of your bread, ye shall eat, and not be satisfied. As good take a mouthfull of gravel, as a mouthfull of bread, and as able it is to nou­rish without Gods blessing.

The means by which we live, are with­out life; If they be living creatures, as sheep, and oxen, and beasts, and birds, and fishes, they must lose their lives, before they can come to be helpes to ours; so true is that saying mortibus vivimus, we live by deaths; now reason tells us, Nihil dat quod non habet nothing can give that, which it hath not; How should food of it selfe pre­serve and further life, which in it self is void of life? the death of the creatures shew­eth [Page 114] that our life is not from them, but from something else.

By all which we may perceive, how these Scriptures may be reconciled, of Eating our bread in the sweat of our browes, and yet to pray, according to the forme our Saviour hath prescribed us, Give us this day our daily bread.

Quest. 47. vers. 19.

Whether from this Scripture we have a command from God, to labour, To eat our bread in the sweat of our browes?

I conceive we have, though some think, that this was laid upon man after his Resp. transgression, rather as a curse which he must indure, then a duty which he should performe: for the clearing of this con­sider,

1. It is granted that this was a curse laid upon man for his transgression.

1. As some of Gods curses are promises as well as curses, to set out his goodnesse: so some of Gods curses are precepts as well as curses, to set forth h [...]s justice.

Some of Gods curses are promises, as well as curses; so, I will put enmity between thee and the woman: It is a curse on he [Page 115] Serpent, and yet a promise of the Messiah.

Some of Gods curses areprecepts as well as curses; so, Thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee; this is Gen. 3.16. a curse, and yet it is a precept: Let our 1 Cor. 14. 34. women keep silence in the Churches; for it is not permitted unto them to speak, but they are commanded to be under obedience, as saith the Law.

Now the truth is, this of eating our bread in the sweat of our brows is all these, it is a curse, it is a promise, it is a precept; it is a curse, in that God will not suffer the earth to afford us bread, without our sweat; it is a promise, in that God assu­reth us, that we shall have bread for our sweat; and it is a precept too, in that God enjoyneth us, if we will have bread to sweat for it.

Have a care then of relieving common beggers, vagrant and idle persons: I speak not against Almes, God requireth us to feed the hungry: but remember as God doth not approove of any other work without charity, so neither of charity it selfe without discretion, as Paul, Honour widows; but those that are widdowes indeed: 1. Tim 5.3 A woman that hath poysoned her hus­band [Page 116] is a widow, but she is not a widow indeed, not to be honoured; so you must relieve the poor, but those who are poor indeed: who are they?

Those that want not onely the things they aske, but want also means to get without asking, viz. blind, aged, past their work, that have a greater charge then they can maintain by their work.

Ierome: Pars sacrilegii est rem pauperum dare non pauperibus. Whilest you think you relieve the poor, you robbe the poor.

Quest 48. vers. 16, 17, 18, 19.

What may we learne, from these verses considered together?

That God in the midst of judgement Resp. remembers mercy: and that he rolls up the sentence pronounced against the man, and woman in love, and sweetnesse: thou shalt conceive, and travell in sorrow, there is judgement, but thou shalt bring forth chil­dren, there is mercy; thy desire shall be sub­ject, there is judgement; but it shall be to thy husband, there is mercy. God saith to Adam, Cursed is the ground for thy sake, there is judgement; but not cursed art thou, there is mercy. Thou shalt labour and sweat, [Page 117] there is judgement; but it shall not be over­much, (you know the face sweats before a­ny part) and it shall be the sweat of thy face, there is mercy; thy face shall sweat, there is judgement; but in the sweat of thy face thou shalt eat bread, there is mercy.

Quest. 49. vers. 21.

Why did the Lord God make coats of skinnes, and cloath our first parents with them?

To teach them he had not cast them out Resp. 1 of his fatherly care, though they had sinned against him.

That it might be a continuall Item of 2 their sin against God. The originall of raiment should never be forgotten by the sonnes of Adam, but be remembred as a check to the vanity, and pride of appa­rell; we have no more cause to be proud of our cloaths, then of a plaister of mast­ick worne to stay the Rheume from an­noying the eyes or Teeth, or a paire of spectacles to help the dimnesse of the sight.

Quest. 50. vers. 24.

In the former verse it is said, The Lord [Page 118] God sent man forth from the garden of Eden, and in this verse, it is said he drove out the man.

It is like God at first bid him go, and Resp. then he shewing himselfe unwilling, and begging that he might abide there still, God with some evidence of wrath drove him out.

Quest. 51. verse 24.

What may we Learne from Gods placing at the East of the Garden Cheru­bims, and a flaming sword, which turned every way, to keep the way of the Tree of life?

That when man fell out with God, he fell out with the good Angels; The Resp. Angels were loyall subjects, and took part with their Prince against the Rebels; but through Christ God and we are friends, and the Angels and we are friends; now in stead of shutting us out of Paradise, they carry us into Paradise: The Angels conveyed Lazarus into Abrahams bo­some.

Good examples are rare in the world, Oh that we could imitate the good Angels! The mariners at sea when they have no land-markes to direct them home to their [Page 119] own Countrey, are guided by the Starres. Truly we have but a few good examples in this world, and therefore let us take our patterne from the Angels, that continu­ally behold the face of God, ready to do his will: Despise ye not one of these little Matth. 18. 19. ones, for I say unto you, that in heaven their Angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

Notes on the fourth Chapter.

Quest. 1. verse 1.

It is said here, by Eve, I have gotten a man from the Lord, and yet it is said in the first Epistle of John, Not as Cain, who 1 John 3. 12. was of that wicked one, and slew his bro­ther.

Eve speaks of bringing forth a sonne, Resp. which in it selfe considered, is a blessing from the Lord; as barrennesse was ac­counted a curse, so fruitfulnesse was ac­counted a mercy. Children in Scripture are called The heritage of the Lord; Lo chil­dren Psa. 227 3. are an heritage of the Lord▪ and the fruit of the wombe is his reward. There be some that account children but bills of [Page 120] charges, but God puts them upon the account of our mercies: It was an holy, and pious speech of Iacob concerning his children, These, saith he, are the children, which God hath graciously given thy ser­vant. Gen. 33. 5.

A Learned Author observes, that chil­dren are greater blessings then any out­ward thing else whatsoever, and there­fore when a description is made of Jobs goods the best is put first, first the Spirit Job. 1.1. of God sets down his spirituall blessings, Job was a man perfect, and upright and one that feared God, and eschewed evil; and then comes his outward blessings, and a­mongst them his children are set in the first ranke, There were borne unto him seven sonnes and three daughters, and then comes his sheep, and Oxen, and Camells.

So that Eve speaks of bringing forth a sonne which in it selfe, is a blessing from the Lord, and hence saith she I have gotten a man from the Lord; John speaks of Gain with respect unto his wick­ednesse, which was not from God, but from the Devil, and hence saith he, Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother.

Quest. 2. vese 1.

Whether Eve thought that she had brought forth the Messiah? for so many affirme with a great deale of confidence; and they render the words not as we do, I have gotten a man from the Lord, but say they, according as it is in the Originall, I have gotten a man the Lord.

The ambiguous acceptation of the par­ticle Resp. 1 [...] hath given rise to this opinion.

We grant that this particle is many 2 times a note of the accusative case, which transitive verbs governe.

Withal we say, it is not rarely taken 3 for the prepositions cum, or a, vel abs, pro, cum; ut, Gen. 5. 22. Exo. 1. 1. pro à, vel abs; ut, Gen. 44. 4.

We may conclude therefore with safe­ty, that the Originall will beare this 4 translation, I have gotten a man from the Lord.

That those that are of the other perswa­sion 5 affirme, that Eve understood that the Messiah should be God, which was the oc­casion of the speech, I have gotten a man the Lord.

That to me it sounds discord, to say, 6 [Page 122] that Eve should know so much of the Messiah, as that he was God, and yet that she should think that he should be born after the ordinary way of mankinde as Cain was.

Therefore I judge it safer, to keep to 7 our translation, I have received a man from the Lord, viz. by the favour and gift of God: especially, when I consider, that good women have used such expressi­ons in the like case: as Leah. And Leah conceived, and bare a sonne, and she called his Gen. 29. 32. name Reuben, for she said, Surely the Lord hath looked upon mine affliction; and verse 33. And she conceived againe, and bare a vers. 33. sonne, and said, Because the Lord hath heard that I was hated, he hath therefore gi­ven me this sonne also, and she called his name Simeon. See also ver. 34. &. 35. of the same Chapter.

Let us Learne, that riches, and honours, and children, and servants, and houses, and lands, are the gifts of God as well as grace, and peace. When the Jews should come to Canaan, and grow great, there was a caution given them, to look up unto God as the donor: When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt blesse the Lord Deu. 8. 10, 11. thy God, for the good land which he hath [Page 123] given thee: beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, &c. Many who are per­swaded that God gives grace, and God gives heaven, and salvation, are hardly perswaded, at least do not consider it, that God gives riches, and health, and wealth, and liberty. Oh it is a sweet thing, when a man can look upward from these lower things, and can say that his earth hath drop­ped down to him from heaven.

There is no creature in the world, that God hath made capable of knowing any thing of the first cause, but onely the ra­tionall creature: And it is the excellency of man, not onely to enjoy the good that he hath, but to be able to rise up to the high­est and first cause of all good. It is obser­ved of the doves, that they peck, and look upwards; hence the Church in the Canti­cles is said to have doves eyes, because they look so much up to heaven, upon every good they receive.

As the Church hath doves eyes, so the men of the world have dogs eyes; dogs you know look up to their Master for a bone, and when they have it they pre­sently look down to the earth again; wick­ed men will look up will pray to God when they want any thing, but when they [Page 124] have received what they would have, God shall not have one good look from them.

Quest. 3. verse 2.

Why did Adam bring up his sonnes, one to be a keeper of sheep, and the other a tiller of the ground?

To teach us that parents should bring Resp. up their children to some employment; and that it is the duty of every one, industri­ously to apply himselfe to some calling or other. Cain and Abel were heires apparent to the whole earth; and yet they had their employments.

I know we ought to distinguish between manuall labour, and mentall labour: in the manner of employment may be some odds. Manuall, servile, and mechanick labour is fit for men of a lower condition; generous, and ingenuous, and liberall employments for persons of the greatest births, and brightest intellectualls, and this kinde of labour possibly might have suited best with Cain, and Abel, had it not been for the scarcity of persons then living in the world, and the necessity of engaging in such callings for the present; but every one ought to be industrious.

[Page 125] And therefore, as a Learned Author very well observes, That those Gallants, who live in no setled course of life, but spend their time in pleasure and vanity, there is not the poorest contemptible crea­ture that cryeth Oysters, and Kitchin-stuffe in the street, but deserveth his bread bet­ter then they; and his course of life is of better esteeme with God, and every sober wise man, then theirs. An horse, that is neither good for the way, nor the cart, nor the race, nor any other service, let him be of never so good a breed, never so well marked and shaped, yet he is but a Jade. His Master setteth nothing by him, every man will say, Better knock him in the head, then keep him. His skin, though not much worth, is yet better worth then the whole beast besides.

Let us have a care therefore of giving up our selves to the vanities and pleasures of the world; An idle mans brain is the Devils shop, where he forges all manner of sinne. Nihil agendo, malè agere disces: Hierom thought that action, and lawfull employment was a disheartning to the Devil, and therefore he gives this advice, Semper aliquid age, ut te Diabolus inveniat occupatum; Put thy selfe upon some bu­sinesse [Page 126] or other, that when the Devil comes to tempt thee to sin, he may not finde thee at leasure.

Quest. 4. verse 3, 4.

Why did Cain bring of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord, and Abel of the firstlings of his flock?

Both Cain and Abel brought such offer­ings unto the Lord as were suitable to that Resp. way or calling in which God had set them: Cain was a tiller of the ground, and therefore brings as his offering the fruits thereof; Abel was a keeper of sheep, and therefore brings as his offering the first­lings of his flock.

As Old Testment Saints had their sa­crifices under the Law, so New Testament Saints have their sacrifices under the Gospel. Almost every duty of Christia­nity in which a man consecrates himselfe to God, is called a sacrifice; righteousness is a sacrifice, Offer the sacrifices of righte­ousnesse; prayer is a sacrifice, Let my prayer Psa. 4.5. Psal. 141. 2. be set before thee as incense, and the lifting up of my hands as an Evening sacrifice: Ps. 51.17. Repentance is a sacrifice, The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and con­trite heart, Lord, thou wilt not dispise: Almes­deeds Heb. 13.16 that is a sacrifice, But to do good, [Page 217] and to communicate forget not, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased: Thanksgi­ving is a sacrifice, I will offer to thee the sacri­fice Psal. 116. 17. of thanksgiving, and will call upon the Name of the Lord.

It is usuall for the Spirit of God in the Scripture to describe spirituall duties by expressions drawn from Ceremonies, and usages under the Law; As Repen­tance is called Washing, Wash ye, make ye Isay. 1.16. cleane, put away the evill of your doings from before mine eyes. So prayer is called Incense, Let my prayer be set before thee as In­cense. And the righteousnesse of Saints, Psa. 14.2. Fine linnen. And to her was granted, that Rev. 19.8. she should be arayd in fine linnen, clean and white; for the fine linnen is the righteousness of Saints. (Being an allusion to the garments of the Priests) so in this case Gospel-graces and duties are called Sacrifices.

A Learned Author observes, that we may parallell Christian sacrifices under the Gospel to those under the Law: Re­pentance is as a trespasse-offering, Zeal a burnt-offering, praise a free-will-offering, sincerity the oblation of unleavened bread, &c.

Well then let us be exhorted in the words of the Apostle, To offer up our bo­dies, Rom. 12.1. [Page 128] a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable un­to God, which is our reasonable service: eve­ry word in this verse is very Emphaticall.

1. Present your bodies, viz. your whole person; as Christ gave himselfe for you, so you must give your selves to him. As he was sacrificed for you, so you must be sacrificed for him, not your sheep, nor your Oxen, nor your Goats, but your selves. Cainistae sunt, saith Luther, offerentes non personam, sed-opus personae. Now saith Origen, Instead of a Ramme we must kill our irefull passions, instead of a Goat our unclean affections, instead of flying fowles our idle thoughts.

2. A living sacrifice; because the Jewes sacrifices were dead sacrifices. Beasts dyed when they were sacrificed, but men live when they are sacrificed, nay, they dye un­less they be sacrificed.

3. An holy sacrifice, the Jewes might sacri­fice beasts, and not be holy, but the Christi­an cannot sacrifice himselfe but he must needs be holy.

4. An acceptable sacrifice; before the sacri­fice of beasts, did not please God, unlesse they did sacrifice themselves too; but if Christians sacrifice themselves, it doth please God, though they do not sacrifice beasts.

Quest. 5. vers. 3,4.

Whether Cain, and Abel knew, that God was to be worshipped this way, viz. by offering up of sacrifices, by the light of Nature, or whether they had it by tradition from Adam?

Our adversaries of the Church of Resp. Rome contend, that they knew by the Light of Nature that God was to be wor­shipped this way, and that they learned from their father onely some circumstanti­als of worship.

The reasons they give for this their judg­ment, are,

1. That the Heathens by the Light of Nature worshipped God this way.

2. That the Law of Nature doth ob­lige us not onely to the worship of God; but to such a worship as might most fitly set forth the Majestie and dominion of God, and the subjection and homage of man, and this was best represented by sa­crifices.

To both these answer may be made.

As for the first, though Heathens wor­shipped [Page 130] God by sacrifices, yet it re­maines to be proved, that they knew this way of worship by the Light of Na­ture.

As for the second, it doth not appeare (but by the intervention of a positive Law of God obliging thereunto) that the kil­ling or sacrificing of a brute creature was the best way of worship to set forth Gods soveraignty, or our homage.

Therefore, as to the answer of this ques­tion, we affirme that by the Light of Na­ture we may know that God is to be wor­shipped, and that with inward and outward worship, but deny that this kinde of wor­ship is to be found out by the Light of Na­ture.

The Orthodoxy of this perswasion will be cleared up, if we consider, that the killing or sacrificing of a beast did not please God any further then as it was a type of Christ; now the doctrine of Christ being such a mystery, as never yet hath been discovered by the Light of Nature, the same may be said concerning this way of worship that pointed thither­ward.

So then Cain and Abel were instructed in this way of worship by their parents, A­dam and Eve.

[Page 131] From the consideration of the whole we may note:

1. Outward performance of duties are gra­cious evidence: Cain offers sacrifice, as well as Abel. They come unto thee, as the peo­ple Eze. 33. 31. cometh, and they sit before thee as my peo­ple, and they heare thy words, but they will not do them; for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetous­nesse. As a statue hath all the parts of a man, head, and armes, and legs, and feet, but it wants an inward principle of life: so an Hypocrite hath all the outward parts and lineaments of a Christian, he prayes, and hears, and receives the Sacrament, but there wants an inward principle of grace: Be ye doers of the word, not hearers onely, deceiving your own soules. A Learned Jam. 1.22. Author observes, that the word in the O­riginall is [...], a terme of Art, and it implieth a sophisticall Argument, or syllogisme, which hath an appearance or probability of truth, but is false in mat­ter or forme, and is put by the Apostle to imply those false discourses, that are in the Consciences of men, viz. They that heare the Word shall be saved; But I heare the Word; Therefore I shall be saved.

Therefore have a care of resting upon [Page 132] holy duties, Satan still tempts us to be like unto God, to be Christs our selves, and Saviours our selves. The dove made use of its wings to flie to the Arke, but it trusted not in its wings, but in the Arke; We may make use of good duties to bring us to Christ, but we must not trust in our duties, but in Christ. A good work rested on, is as b [...]d as a sin commit­ted.

Consider God is a Spirit, and he looks to the spirit. All the wayes of man are Prov. 16.2. cleane in his own eyes, but the Lord weigh­eth the spirits. A man may deceive his neighbour, yea, he may cheat himselfe, but God is not mocked. The Lord know­eth our inside. The Lord tryes the spi­rit, he turnes up the bottome of the bagge, as Josephs steward did, and then comes out all our Abominations, and wickednesses that have beene so long hid.

A man may miscarry, though he be employed in the highest duties and ser­vices; Mat. 7.22, 23. Many will say unto me in that day, Have we not prophesied in thy Name, and in thy Name cast out Devils, &c? A man may have the gift to cast out Devils, and yet at last may be cast unto the Devil. A [Page 133] Minister by his preaching may be in­strumentall to save others, and yet not be saved himselfe. The shipwrights that built Noahs Arke, were drowned them­selves.

2. Note here the duties of Parents to­ward their children; Adam nurtured his children very well; for,

  • 1. He provideth for them till they come to age.
  • 2. Then he appoints them their callings, for one was an Husbandman, the other a shepherd.
  • 3. He taught them the worship of the true God.

Adam should be a patterne to Parents in these particulars, and especially in that which is the greatest matter of all these, viz. instructing of their children in the true wor­ship and service of God.

A Learned Author observes, that fur­thering the salvation of our children, is a duty incumbent on parents in point of ju­stice, from the parents they received the filement and misery of their nature, and therefore they owe them all possible help for their recovery. It is a piece of cruelty for a parent to suffer his children to lye in their blood; if we hurt but a stranger, yea, [Page 134] though against our wills, we think it our duty to help to cure him.

It is worthy of our consideration, that the promise of a blessing to be continued to posterity is annexed to the second com­mandment in the Decalogue, which is concerning the worship and service of God, God thereby intimating, what parents and others should principally apply them­selves to have planted in their families, if they would have Gods blessing entailed upon their issue.

It is an idle conceit of many, that Re­ligion, and godlinesse are not for children; surley most equall it is, as the first-fruits of other things, so the first-fruits of our yeares should go also to God. Ut primi­tiae rerum, it á primitiae dierum. Greg.

Quest▪ 6. vers. 3, 4.

It is said here, Cain and Abel brought their offerings unto the Lord, and yet it is said after Seth's time, Then began men to call upon the Name of the Lord: Was not the Name of the Lord called upon Gen. 4.26 before by Abam and Eve and Abel?

Yes, But for some time the great­er Resp. part of the world were corrupted [Page 135] with Cains wicked progeny, inso­much as it is probable, the good peo­ple at first worshipped God in their fami­lies, but after Seth, the family of the righteous encreasing, the worship of God became more publick, and solemne.

This then that is said, vers. 26 of this Chapter, that then began men to call up-the Name of the Lord, is not spoken sim­pliciter, sed [...].

Quest. 7. verse 3, 4.

Why did Abel bring the firstlings of his flock, and the fat thereof, as an offering un­to the Lord?

The firstlings of the flock were ac­counted Resp. the best, as also were the first-fruits, Abel would not offer up unto God that which cost him nothing.

It is our duty to be at some cost for the carrying on of the worship and service of God: Buy the truth, and sell it not: He Prov. 23. 23. doth not say take the truth, as if it might be had for taking up, but buy it. What is the meaning of that phrase? You know in buying of a commodity, we are willing to part with something, that we may have and enjoy the thing we buy: There are [Page 136] severall things you must part withall, if you would have the truth, and amongst the rest you must part with your purses.

It is true indeed, Gods grace and truth is not to be had for money; but though you cannot buy grace, you may buy Preaching, maintaine a godly Ministery, whereby you may come to get grace.

We may observe in that Parable, The Merchant finding a rich treasure, hid in the field, he is said To sell all, and buy the Mat. 13. 44. field. He doth not buy the treasure, but the field; the field is the Ministery of the Gos­pell, in which the treasure of grace is hid; now in buying the field, he buyes the trea­sure hid in the field.

The Gospel, [...] is a free gift, and yet you must buy the truth, and maintaine the Ministery.

But is it not a wicked thing to set the Object. Gospel to sale?

Yes, without question: but pray mark, Resp. you say sometimes you have bought a Bible; the truth is, a Bible in some sense cannot be said to be bought; what then do we buy? I answer, you buy the cover and the paper, and the binding, and the printing, but the Bible it selfe is Gods gift: So people do not buy [Page 137] the Gospel, nor Ministers sell it. But you will say, if you do not sell the Gospel, what else do you sell? We answer, we sell our study, our pains, the spending of our strength, and spirits, but the Gospel is Gods gift. That Minister, and he alone may be said to sell the Gospel, that would make the Gospel to serve his base carnall interest, and so make a market of it.

And truly in this sense, others may be said to sell the Gospel as well as Ministers; there are some, that put the Gospel to the same drudgery that they put their foot-boyes, and make it lackey after their Coaches.

Quest. 8. verse 3, 4.

Why the Lord had respect to A­bels offering, and not unto Cains?

Some, and indeed the most, conceive Resp. that Cain offered unto the Lord of the fruits of the ground, any thing, he ca­red not much what; but Abel of the first­lings of the flock, of the best he had, and this (say they) was a main reason why the Lord had respect to Abels offering, and not Cains.

But by the leave of so many Learned, [Page 138] and reverend Divines, I shall enter a de­murrer against this judgement of theirs; for consider,

1. As you heard before, they brought those offerings that were suitable to that way or calling in which God had set them.

2. There is not the least hint in the Scri­pture, that Cain brought the worser sort of the fruits of the ground, but for ought we read the best of the kinde.

3. That God is to be served with the best, is a Notion that lyes with its face upwards in the understandings of men.

4. That though it must be acknow­ledged, that the best of the kinde was to be offered up in sacrifice unto God (as you read, Ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it Mal. 1.8 not evil? And ye offer the lame; and sick is it not evil? Offer it now unto thy Gover­nour, will he be pleased with thee, or ac­cept thy person, saith the Lord of Hosts?) Yet when the Scripture clearly makes the difference of the issue of Cain, and Abels offering, to consist in the persons who offered, and not in the offering, why should we enquire any further concerning it? By faith Abel offered unto God a mo [...]e excellent sacrifice then Cain. Heb. 11.4

[Page 139] This should teach us to mixe all our ho­ly duties with faith: It is said, when Christ was baptized, Lo, a voice from Mat 3. 17. heaven saying, This is my beloved Sonne in whom I am well pleased; Not with whom I am well pleased, but in whom. God the Father is not only well pleased with Christ himselfe, but in him with the graces, du­ties, and persons of his people: It is not with our duties, as with our posies, the posie gives sweetnesse to the bosome, but the bosome gives no sweetnesse to the po­sie: But in regard of our holy duties, the case is quite contrary; The Lord Jesus, as it were, takes our duties, and puts them into his bosome, and they receive all their goodnesse, and fragrancy from the bosome of Christ.

It is said, That the smoke of the Incense which came with the prayers of the Saints, a­scended Rev. 8.4. up before God out of the Angels hand: Our Incense smells of our owne hand, and it would stinke worse in Gods nostrils then the Onions, and garlick of Egypt, if it were not perfumed, and presented by the hand of Christ.

Now faith sets Christ at work: as Christ sets his people at work to do him service, so faith sets Christ at work to do his peo­ple good.

Quest. 9. vers. 5.

It is said, That Cain was worth, and his countenanee fell;

—Difficile est animum non prodere vul­tu.

It seems therefore that God by some vi­sible signe gave Testimony concerning the acceptation of Abels sacrifice, and not Cains, or else how came Cain to know it? now the question is, what this visible signe was?

It is very probable, that it was by fire Resp. from heaven burning up the sacrifice, and we have severall instances to this purpose: And Moses and Aaron went into the Ta­bernacle Lev. 9.23, 24 of the Congregation, and came out, and blessed the people, &c. And there came a fire out from before the Lord, and con­sumed upon the Altar, the burnt-offering and the fat, which when all the people saw, they shouted and fell on their faces. So, 1 Kin. 18. 38.

What reason have we to believe, that Object. the acceptation of Abels sacrifice, was confirmed by a miracle, when we have no such thing in the Scripture?

Although we have it not in expresse Resp. [Page 141] termes, yet it is cleare by the context, that God did manifest his acceptation of Abels sacrifice some extraordinary way, which by other instances in Scripture of the same nature we conceive to be fire from heaven. And if that be miraculous, you see we have reason to look that way.

But this was a meat-offering; now we do not find that meat-offerings were burnt Object. with fire.

That this was a meat-offering is said, not Resp. 1 proved.

That suppose it be so, we may find in 2 Scripture meat-offerings to be burnt with fire; thus you read concerning Gideons of­fering; Judg. 6.19. 21. the same we read concerning Ma­noahs offering. Judg. 13. 19, 20.

Let this caution us against the sinne of envy, Cain is sad because Abels sacrifice was accepted: there are two sinnes, which were Christs sorest enemies, covetousness sold Christ, and envy delivered him.

It is a Devillish sinne, and cometh from Hell, the Devil is called the envious man.

It is one of the torments of Hell, There shall be weeping and gnashing of Teeth, when Luck. 13. 28. ye shall see Abraham, Isaac, and Iacob, and all the Prophets in the Kingdome of [Page 142] Heaven, and you your selves shut out.

Envy opposeth the Providence of God, grieving that God should dispose of his blessings, as he doth.

It is a most unjust sinne, for it is offend­ed with nothing but that which is good; and the more good it is, the greater is the en­vy. As the brighter the Sun shineth, the more are weak and sore eyes offended: Oh how contrary are good Angels, and e­vill men! they are ready to cry, and burst for anger at that which makes musick in heaven: The Angels rejoyce at the conver­sion of a sinner, and they rejoyce when one sinnes who is converted.

An envious man is more unhappy then other sinners; others are troubled for their own evils, the envious man for other mens good.

Quest. 10 verse 5.

Why is it said, The Lord had respect un­to Abel, and to his offering: It is not said, The Lord had respect unto Abels offering, but unto Abel and his offering?

To teach us that God first had respect to Abel, and then to his offering: and that the Resp. reason why he had respect to Abels offer­ing was, because he had respect to Abels [Page 143] person. We prize the person because of the gift; God prizes the gift because of the person. The reason why wicked men are not accepted is, because they bring unto God opus personae, sed non perso­nam: They offer their duties unto the Lord, but not themselves.

Quest. 11. vers. 6.

Why doth the Lord propound this question unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy Countenance fallen?

Not for information; God knew the Resp. reason, he needed not an intelligencer; but

1. To teach us, that when we are mo­ved to passion we should think with our selves again and again, why are we an­gry; are we angry upon good grounds, upon a righteous account?

We should endeavour in such a case to commune with our own hearts, and indeed we had need to take some pains, for selfe will hardly be spoken with.

To be angry is our duty in some cases. If anger were an evil in it selfe considered, it could no more be attributed unto God then envy, &c. But because it is an hard [Page 144] matter to be angry and not sinne, it is said, Be angry, and sinne not: and the Apostle Eph. 4. 26. addes, Let not the Sun go down upon your wrath, viz. Let it not lodge with you nor take up its Inne in your breasts.

I have read a story of two persons of eminency between whom anger had pas­sed; But at evening the one sent the other word, the Sun was set, upon which they were soone reconciled.

The Apostle adds, Neither give place to the Devil; He that keepeth anger in his bosome giveth place to the Devil, and why should we make roome for him that will crowd in too fast of himselfe?

Men think to be a little angry is no such matter; but marke the consequence, you give place to the Devil; have a care of the beginnings of sinne; Saith Solomon, The beginning of the words of a fooles mouth is Eccl. 10. 13. foolishnesse, but the end of his talke is mis­chievous madnesse. They that dwell by the Sea-bankes, will not let a small breach lye unrepaired: they know it will endanger the losing of much ground if not looked to in time: Learn therefore to deale with thy sinne, as the Apostle Paul did with false brethren, He gave them no place, no not for Gal. 2.5 an houre.

[Page 145] You may aske me, what are the causes of an holy Anger?

I must not enlarge in this; therefore in a few words,

Holy anger arises from our love unto God, and our hatred against sin.

And herein appeared the exceeding sinfulnesse of Cains wrath, that whereas he should have been angry with his bro­thers sin, he was angry with his brothers righteousness.

And that his rage was great, appeares by the text; for it is said, He was very wrath, and his countenance fell. One glosses up­on it thus, Ex ira vultus Caini demititur in terram: nonne Deus tibi faciem rectam concessit, cur pronam et similem bestiis, depri­mis? Non miror Cainum similem animali­bus iratus enim erat, at iratus expers est om­nis rationis. It is said, Cains countenance fell: God gave him a face erect looking up towards heaven, but now in his pas­sion, he seems to be void of reason, and his countenance falls, as if he were a beast.

Let this caution us against passion upon every turne, let us enquire why we are wroth? He will make a strange com­bustion in his soul, who at the landing of [Page 146] every Cock-boat, (upon every triviall occasion) sets the Beacons on fire. He that will be angry for every thing, will be angry for nothing, &c.

The Apostle gives us an exhortation, Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the doy of redemption: But Eph. 4. 30. what course must we take that we may not grieve the Spirit? This followes in the next verse, Let all bitternesse, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking vers. 31. be put away from you with all malice. The Spirit of God cannot endure an unquiet habitation. It is observable, how many times in the Scriptures the Spirit of God appeales to the reasons and understandings of men; as here, why art thou wroth, and why is thy countenance fallen? Nothing more irrationall then irreligion: when a man is intemperate, unjust, passionate, he acts not onely against Scripture, but against principles of reason, and ingenui­ty. If God had not commanded us to be sober, just, temperate in our affections, it is for our interest so to be; the commands of God, like Benjamins sack, have money in the mouth of them; in the keeping the Commandements there is exceeing great reward; wicked men are mad in a Scrip­ture-sure-sense; [Page 147] The Prodigall came to him­selfe when he came to his Father.

2. Another reason why God might pro­pound this question to Cain might be this, to note unto us that when wicked men are not accepted, they are apt to cast the blame upon God: why art thou wroth? Thou seemest to be angry with thy bro­ther, whose sacrifice is accepted, but indeed thou art angry with God, who accepted the sacrifice. Thou strikest at the Head, and because thou canst not reach that, thou woundest the Heele.

Proud daring sinners, to lay the blame on God: It is foolish to cast our sins alto­gether on Satan, but it is blasphemous to cast them upon God. Sin is a bastard­brood, it is conceived and brought forth by man, and yet if you lay it at his doore he will not father it.

It is the observation of a Learned Au­thor, man naturally hateth God, and since he cannot rase out the sense of a Deity out of his soul, he would destroy the dread and reverence of it. 'Tis a saying of Plutarch, Malo de me dici nullum esse Plu­tarchum quàm malum esse Plutarchum. Man cannot deny God, therefore he de­base, him, which is worse. 'Tis better not to be, hen to be wicked

[Page 148] 3. A third Reason may be ro teach us, that God will call the wicked to an ac­count for every evil work.

1. For their sinnes of Omission; I was an hungry, will Christ say, and you gave me no meat, &c. Such a time, you had an Mat. 25.43 opportunity in the hands to get wisdom, but you neglected it, you had power and opportunity to appear for God, and his glorious Gospel, but you had no heart to it.

2. For sinnes of commission, Rejoyce, Oh young man, in thy youth, and let thy heart cheere thee in the dayes of thy youth, and walk in the wayes of thy heart, and in the sight of thine eyes; but know thou that for all these things God will bring thee into judgement: For al these things, these trifles, these tricks of youth, as the world accounts them: Item for thy Oaths, Item for thy Lyes, Item for thy Cozening, Item for thy drunkennesse, Item for thy Hypocrisy, for all these things God will bring thee to judgement: As the Apostle saith, We are the children of God, but it doth not yet appeare what we shall be; viz. there is more glory in heaven, then the people of God are able to con­ceive; so wicked men are now the children of wrath, but it doth not appeare what [Page 149] they shall be, viz. there shall be greater torment in Hell then the wicked are able to conceive.

And God shall bring thee to judgement, viz. unexpectedly, and for ought thou knowest speedily. Death doth not al­wayes knock at the doore, but nany times breaks in, and takes persons away in the prime of their age.

Oh that the Gallants of this age would think of this Scripture; a Wicked youngster is like a thief, that having stollen a gelding rideth away bravely mounted, till such time, as being overtaken with Hue and Cry, is soon afterward sentenced, and put to death.

Quest. 12. verse 7.

Why is it said, If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted, and not, if thou doest that which is good?

Because a man may do that which is Resp. materially good, and yet may not do well: Cain did that which was good, when he brought an offering to the Lord, but he did not do well. We use to say, Ex quoli­bet defectu malum: A work that is good, as to the matter of it, may by reason of a [Page 150] defect in the principle, or end, become starke naught: therefore Luther used to say, Of all workes take heed of your good workes. Sordet in conspectu Judicis; quod fulget in conspectu operantis: That which is fair to men, is abomination to God. God rejected the swan for sacrifice, some say, because under a white feather it hath a black skinne.

Quest. 13. verse 7.

What is the meaning of that phrase, sin lyeth at the doore?

By sinne in this place is meant the pu­nishment of sinne, and not sin it selfe, and Resp the very phrase will give us light for the interpretation of it, after this manner. If thou doest not well, sinne lyeth at the doore; now sin when it is committed, doth notly at the doore, but is gotten into the House.

Then the meaning is this, If thou doest not well, sin lyeth at the doore; though this punishment seeme to sleep for a while, yet it lyes at the doore, and it will not be long there before it be roused, and then like a great Mastiffe, it will be ready to pull out the throat of thy soul.

[Page 151] Let us remember, if we do not well, sinne lyeth at the doore; the sinner shall not escape unpunished; God is righteous, & by no meanes will cleare the guilty, &c. The Devil alwayes covers his hooke with a bait. He never comes bluntly and ru­dely to a man, and biddeth him simply transgresse Gods Commandments, but al­wayes useth some device or other to make his sinne please him: when the Devil fish­ed for Adam, he baited his hook with hope of preferment, that he should be as God: To catch David, he baiteth his Hook with pleasure; to catch Achan, Gehazi, he baiteth his hook with profit: but when the fish hath swallowed the hook, had she not better have been without the bait? The Devil promiseth pleasure, but God knows it is deare bought: there is never a dramme of sinne, but it bringeth a pound of sorrow.

Quest. 14. vers. 8.

What is the meaning of this phrase, and Cain talked with Abel his brother?

Most Expositors carry it, that he talked Resp. with him in a brotherly manner, dissem­bling his bloody purpose of killing him that he might the better effect it.

[Page 152] Learn, Foulest sins have oft-times fair­est pretences: Wo unto you, Scribes, and Pha­risees, hypocrites; for ye devour widows houses, Mat. 23.14 and for a pretence make long prayers. Mark, They devoured houses, that shewed their covetousnesse, and widowes houses, that shewed their cruelty, and all this under pretence of religion, making long prayers; this shewed their hypocrisy. Herod colours over his cruel intention of murdering Christ, with pretence of doing him ho­mage: Herod sent the wise men to Bethlehem, and said, Go search diligently for the young Mat. 2.8. child; and when ye have found him, bring me word, that I may worship him. Judas endeavours to dissemble his treason with a kisse. Judas, betrayest thou the Sonne of Luk. 22.48 man with a kisse? What? an Apostle of Christ, a betrayer of Christ? betrayest thou the Son of man, and with a Kisse? Any Treason is bad enough, but for Ju­das to betray Christ, and with a kisse, Horrendum scelus! who would have thought the very kisses, and salutations of Christ to be murder?

We may observe, that Jesus in one place calls Judas Devil, and in another friend, the reason may be, because Judas played the Devil in the likenesse of a [Page 153] friend. [...] signifies both a player, and an hypocrite; as great men have their players, so hath the devil his; some play men in the shape of devils, others play devils in the shape of men: The roof of the mouth in Greek is called [...] hea­ven, and the heart of man is called abys­sus, which signifies hell: there are those that have an heaven of holinesse in their mouthes, that have an hell of wickednesse in their hearts.

The Church of God hath two sorts of enemies, the openly profane person, the swearer, the drunkard, the un­cleane person, as also the carnal professor, the hypocrite, the pretender unto holinesse. These oppose and perse­cute the people of God as well as the o­ther. The Ivie imbraceth the tree, but withall eats out the heart of it, and kills it: there are many in the world, that make a great profession of godlinesse, who are Wens in the body of Christ, not mem­bers of it; A Wenne is skinned over with the same outside, which the true mem­bers have, and it seemeth to belong to the integrity of the whole body, when indeed it is an enemy, and a thief therein; many pretend to be members of [Page 154] Christ, when they are enemies unto Christ.

The Devil in these latter dayes hath been found in Samuels Mantle; many a toad hath been found under the stones of the Sanctuary.

Religion hath been most opposed, by the carnal and hypocritical professors of it: Luther professeth, A falsis amicis plus est mihi periculi, quàm ab ipso toto Papatu: I am in more danger of those that are my pretended friends, then from the Pope, and all his adherents. The Gadarens be­sought Christ to depart; but his own Countrey-men thrust him out of their Luk. 4.29. City, and led him unto the brow of an hill, that they might cast him down head­long. Pretended friends do the great­est mischief to the Church of God; poy­son kills more surely then the sword. Goliahs sword lies hid in an Ephod; no sword to Goliahs, no cruelty to hypocrites.

Quest. 15. Vers. 8.

What may we learn from Cain's killing his brother Abel?

The bloody-mindednesse, of wicked Resp. men against the Church of God: In the [Page 155] murder of Abel we may take notice of these particulars.

1. Homo occidit hominem, one man kills another.

2. Frater occidit fratrem, a brother kills a brother; non homicida tantum, sed fratri­cida.

3. Injustus occidit justum, a wicked man kills a good man.

4. Propter sinceri cultum Dei, this murder was committed upon the account of wor­shipping God in faith; non homicida & fratricida, sed Justicida; Cain was not only a killer of his brother, but of his bro­ther for righteousnesse sake.

5. He killed not his brother in a pas­sion, or by chance-medly, as we use to say, but maliciously, and with premedita­tion. He talks with his brother after a friendly manner, gets him into the fields, and there rises up against his brother and slayes him.

6. He kills his brother in the fields, not in his house, lest help might come in to save his life, and that he might with the more conveniency (at least as he con­ceived) deny the fact when it was com­mitted.

7. Post admonitionem Dei, after coun­sel [Page 156] given him by God to the contrary, If thou dost well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well sin lieth at the door.

Learn, There is no hatred so virulent, and bitter, as that which is occasioned by profession of the Name of Christ; this makes people forget all natural affection; The brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the childe, and the Mat. 10.21 children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.

When Christ was borne, all Jerusa­lem was troubled, and Herod cut the throats of all the children in Bethlehem; when Christ is borne in the soul, Satan and his instruments are in an uproare, and are ready to kill (though it be never so little) the babe of grace. No fire burns so hot, as that which is kindled by the breath of religion.

And, we may observe, (which truly should lie sadly upon our spirits) the neerer men come to each other in their judgements (if there be a difference) the more desperate are their designes one against another. The Persians and Turks, are both Mahumetans, and yet differ­ing in some small points, in the interpre­tation of their Alcoran; the Persians burn [Page 157] whatsoever books they finde of the Turkish sect: and the Jew can better brook an Heathen, then a Christian; The Pope will dispense with Jews, but not with Protestants; Lutherans will sooner joyne hands with a Papist, then a Calvinist: I could instance in others, but I for­bear.

Quest. 16. Vers. 9.

What may we learn from the answer that Cain gives unto the question pro­pounded unto him by the Lord, And the Lord said unto Cain, where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not; Am I my brothers keeper?

We may learn, That the Commission Resp. 1 of one sinne makes way for another: Cain offers up his sacrifice without faith in God, then he kills his brother, and here in this verse, first he tells a notorious lie, when God asked him, where his brother was, he said he knew not; & then he is guil­ty of high contempt against God, as if the Lord had asked him an impertinent que­stion; Lord why doest thou ask me, where is Abel my brother? I am not my brothers keeper. He doth not deny him to be his brother, and yet doth deny, [Page 158] that he should have any care of him.

There are some learned men, that con­ceive, (I suppose the impudency of Cain's speech inclined them thereunto) that this debate was between Adam and Cain, and that God is said to speak to Cain, be­cause Adam had it by instinct from God.

But this consideration hath not strength enough in it, to beat us off from the received opinion; for what wickednesses are there imaginable, but we should com­mit with greedinesse, if God should give us up to the wickedinesse of our own spirits?

Well then learn, How the commission of one sin, leads us (as it were) by the hand to the commission of another. There is in wicked courses a praecipitium; when a man is at the top of an hill, it is at his choice, whether he will thence throw himself down, or not; but once let him head-long himself, there is no stay till he come to the bottome. It is an easier mat­ter to keep our selves from entring into desperate courses. then when once we have given our selves the reines to make a stop.

[Page 159]Nemo repente fit turpissimus.

As no man on the sudden becometh most excellent in vertue, so no man on a sudden becomes desperate in evil. There is such a combination of sinne, as in the links of a chaine; if a man draw one link all the rest will follow, so ma­lice follows after anger, murther after hatred, Adultery after drunkennesse. If a man cast a stone into the water, there ari­seth presently a circle in the place, & pre­sently after that another, and so another, till at last all the water be full of circles. In like manner if a man commit one sinne, another will follow upon it, and after that another, unlesse the grace of God prevent, till he be out of measure sin­full.

Take heed therefore of the beginnings of sinne, take Babylons brats, and dash them against the stones.

We may learn that private spirited­nesse, is not a thing well pleasing to God; 2 we are commanded to shew our love, and compassion to a beast, Exod. 23. 5. If thou see the Asse of him that hateth thee ly­ing under his burden, and wouldest forbeare [Page 160] to help him, thou shalt surely help with him: and more should we shew compassion and love to our brother. Am I my brothers keeper? Take heed of that profane speech; Christians ow a mutual serviceablenesse one unto another. God makes no Pa­tentees, nor will he endure any Mono­polies, Christians must drive an open, and free trade. The excellency of o­ther creatures is in their communicati­on of themselves; the Sun raying out his warme and cherishing beames, the Fountain bubling out his purling streams, the Earth yielding forth sovereign herbs, and plants: Christians are then in their excellency, when they are communicative, and useful.

I have read, that the Art of Medicine was perfected thus; As any one met with an herb, and discovered the vertue of it by any accident, he would post it up in some publick place, and if any were sick, or diseased, he was laid in some beaten passage, that every one might commu­nicate the best receipt; and say they, the Physicians skill was perfected by a collection of those posted experiments and receipts: of all things take heed of the napkin; wrap not up your Talents, [Page 161] As every one hath received the gift, even 1 Pet. 4. 10. so minister the same, one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

Quest. 17. vers. 10.

What is meant by this phrase, The voice of thy brothers blood crieth unto me from the ground?

This is to be understood figuratively, a Resp. Metaphor taken from Courts of Justice, Thy brothers blood crieth; that is, as if God should have said, I know what thou hast done as clearly, as if I had called thee to the barre of justice, and the whole matter of fact had been heard, and determined before me, and upon the whole, I should be called upon for justice.

By the way, by what hath been said, some light may be given, for the understanding of that Scripture, I saw under the Altar the soules of them that were slaine for the Word of God, and for Rev. 6▪ 9, 10. the Testimony which they held, and they cry­ed with a loud voice, saying, How long, Oh Lord, holy, and true doest thou not judge, and avenge our blood? Which must not so be understood, as if the soules of the blessed Saints should earnestly desire [Page 162] vengeance on them that shed their blood, which is hardly competible with an hea­venly State, but may be expounded in the same manner, as the words in this ver. The voice of thy brothers blood crieth unto me: viz. The Lord hath the blood that hath been shed for his Names sake, fresh in his thoughts, and will as certainly be re­venged on them that shed it, as if every drop of their blood were a tongue, and continually crying in his eares for justice, &c.

Well then Learn to avoid crying sins: crying is applied to severall sins in the Scripture.

1. To blood, so in this vers. Thy brothers blood cryeth.

2. To the wickednesse of Sodome, Gen 18. 10. The Lord God said, Because the cry of Sodom, and Gomorrah is great, and be­cause their sinne is very grievous, &c.

3. The oppression of Gods servants, Exo. 2. 24. God heard their groaning, &c.

4. The oppression of the widowes, and fatherlesse, Exo. 22.23. Ye shall not afflict any widow or fatherlesse child; if thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto me, I will surely heare their cry.

5. The oppression of the Labourer, Jam. [Page 163] 5.4. Behold, the hire of your labourers, which have reaped downe your field, which is of you kept back by frand, crieth.

And let us blesse God for Jesus Christ; the Apostle doth ascribe a cry to the blood of Christ, as Moses here to the blood of Abel: And to Jesus the Media­tour of the new covenant, and to the blood H [...]b. 12. 24. of sprinkling, that speaketh better things, then that of Abel.

In that speech of the Apostle, there is an allusion made to the blood of Abel, and to the cry thereof: and he illustrates the cry of Christs blood for us, by the cry of the blood of Abel against Cain, yet see the dissimilitude, as a reverend Author hath it, thus.

1. Abel was a Saint; The blood of a wicked man, if innocently shed, cries: if Abel had murdered Cain, Cains blood would have cryed, and called upon God for justice against Abel; but Abels blood cryes according to the worth of the person, Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his Saints. Now if the blood of a Saint cry so, how much more the blood of the King of Saints?

2. Abels blood cryes from the ground, but Christs blood is carried up to heaven. The [Page 164] cry of the blood of a Saint may come up to heaven, yet the blood it self doth not come up thither.

3. Adde to this, the intercession of Christ himselfe, Christ by his own pray­ers seconds the cry of his blood; the blood of a man doth cry, though the man be dead, but Christ ever liveth to make intercession for his people.

Quest. 18. vers. 11, 12.

Why did the Lord pronounce against Cain onely earthly punishments; as, ver. 11, 12?

Because wicked men are not so great­ly Resp. feared with the punishments of the life to come, as carefull to avoid calamities for the present; and indeed herein man becomes like the beasts that perish, which are carried with an hurry to things present, and sensible.

Quest. 19. vers. 13.

Whether that saying of Cain be well translated. My punishment is greater then I can beare?

Some say, it should be rendred, my sin Resp. [Page 165] is greater then can be forgiven; but the context seemes to favour our translation, for in the following words, he speakes not of his sinne, but of his punishment, vers. 14. Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth, and from thy face, &c. here sinne is taken for the punishment of sin, as in severall other places of Scripture.

The greatnesse of Cains punishment will appeare, if you compare it with A­dams.

1. God did not curse Adam, but the earth was cursed for Adams sake, but God sayes to Cain, vers. 11. And now thou art cursed from the earth.

2. That which is included in Adams curse, viz. That though he should labour and sweat, yet he should have bread for it, In the sweat of thy face thou shalt eat thy bread; is denyed to Cain: for, saith the Lord vers. 12. When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength.

3. Though Adam was expelled out of Paradise, yet there was a commodious place assigned him by God, where he and his family might reside, and till the earth; but the Lord saies of Cain, that he [Page 166] should be a fugitive, and a vagabond on the earth, ver. 12.

Oh have a care of blood. What hast thou Gen. 4.7. done? the voice of thy brothers blood crieth to mefrom the ground. God will give a tongue to the earth; speechlesse creatures shall speake, rather then blood shall be conceal­ed.

It is an excellent observation of a learn­ed Author upon that text of Scripture, When he maketh inquisition for blood, he re­membreth them; Saith he, doth not the Psal. 7.12. Lord make inquisition for all sin? Or is there any sin that God doth not enquire after? Surely no, but when it is said God makes inquisition for blood, it ar­gues the greatnesse of that sinne; We finde not the like expression, about any other particular sin, in all the whole book of God: Though God makes inquisition for all sin, yet as if he would let all other sinnes past unsought, and uniquired after, it is said onely of this sinne, that he makes inquisition for it.

Quest. 20. vers. 14.

Cain sayes, From thy face I shall be hid, and yet the Psalmist saith, Psal. 139.7. [Page 167] Whither shall I go from thy Spirit, or whi­ther shall I flee from thy presence?

God is present every where in regard of Resp his essence, and therefore the Psalmist saith, Whither shall I flee from thy presence? We may run from God as our friend, but we cannot escape him, as an enemy: A man pursued in an Island, when he runnes from one end to the other, runs from sea to sea: if you should flee from one end of the earth unto the other, you would run from God unto God,

The meaning then of this phrase, I shall be hid from thy face, is this, I shall be deprived of communion with God in his Ordinances.

Though Cain was a wicked man, yet he was taught by his parents, that there was no way of enjoying God in this world, but in and by his Ordinances; And he speakes this, not from a principle of love to God, or his Ordinances, but upon the ac­count of education.

Learne from hence, The condition of a person excommunicated, is very sad; Christ tells us, we cannot serve God, and Mammon; and therefore when we are cast outof Gods service, we are said to be deliver­ed into the hands of Satan: Hymeneus, and [Page 168] Alexander, excommunicated persons, are 1 Tim. 1. 20. said to be delivered up unto Satan.

Learne also, If the casting out of the Church a particular member, though it be in order to cure and repentance, be so dread­full, what a black day would that be, when the Ordinances of Jesus Christ should as it were be excommunicated, and cast out of the Church of Christ!

Quest. 21. vers. 14.

Cain saith, It shall come to passe that, every one that findeth me, shall slay me; The question is, who those were whom Cain feared, that if they met him, they would slay him?

Some think that Cain speakes this Resp. 1 meerely upon the account of terrours of conscience; for say they, there were none but his Father, and Mother living, and was it likely they would be his executi­oners? and yet Cain imagines multitudes to meet him, and slay him: Every one that findeth me, shall slay me, Prov. 28.1. The wicked fleeth, when no man pursueth: onely his owne guilt pursues him, and makes him flee.

But this opinion hath not the savour of [Page 169] truth in it, for Cain doth not onely sup­pose a considerable number of persons to live at that time in the world, but God himselfe, as appeares by what the Lord said unto Cain, vers. 15. Whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him seven fold.

Some are of opinion, that this is to be 2 expounded of the beasts, every one that findeth me shall slay me, that is, say they, I shall be torne in pieces, by every beast I meet.

But this cannot be the meaning of the words, as appeares by that which followes, for it is said, The Lord set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him, which cannot with any shew of reason, be applied to the beasts.

Others hold, that Cain in these words had 3 respect to those that should afterwards be borne.

But neither can this be; for what needed there a present law, for those who as yet were not in being?

Another sort are of opinion, that these 4 words are to be applied to the Daughters of Adam and Eve: for that Adam had Daughters at that time, is more then pro­bable, from that which followes; for it [Page 170] is said, Cain had a wife, (which must needs be his sister) and that she was come to yeares appeares, because it is said, ver. 17. that Cain knew his wife.

From the whole (I conceive) we may more then probably conclude, that Adam and Eve, at the time when Cain spake these words, had many Sonnes, and Daugh­ters, (although the Spirit of God doth not make mention of them, the History mainly referring to Cain and Abel.)

And to me it seemes very unlikely, that Adam and Eve should have no more chil­dren after Cain and Abel, till they came to yeares of discretion, when at the beginning we finde, God did make especiall provision for the encrease of the world, as appeares by Gods sparing Cains life, and his dispensation of his marri­age with his sister.

However we may take notice of the terrours of Cains conscience; for those that were in the world, were either his pa­rents, brethren, sisters, or neere kindred, and yet he crieth out, Every one that find­eth me shall slay me. If it be such an intolera­ble burden for a man to read one page, or leafe of the booke of conscience, as Cain the killing of his brother, how dreadfull [Page 171] will it be to read the booke of conscience, leafe, by leafe, from one end to the other at the day of judgement?

The accusings of conscience, are one part of the punishment of the damned in Hell; when Dives desired that his brethren might not come into that place of tor­ments, it is conceived by some, that it is not spoken from a principle of love to his brethren, for all naturall affections cease in Hell; but from a principle of self-love, because their presence would tend to his further conviction, and be a means to encrease his torment.

Quest. 22. vers. 15.

Why did the Lord so farre indulge Cain, that he would not permit him to suffer death, though guilty of murder?

Some say, Credibile est antiquitus. gra­vium Resp 1 delictorum leves fuisse poenas, sed cùmeae progressu temporis contemnerentur, ventum ad mortem. If this could be cleared, it would be a strong argument for punishing 2 theft with death.

Propter hominum raritatem: Because of the scarcity of persons then living, that God might provide for the encrease of the world, he spares Cain.

[Page 172] Because there was then lesse feare of doing hurt by example. Malefactors are 3 punished for others sake, as well as their owne, that by their example, others may beware of committing the same crime, lest they bring upon themselves the same pu­nishment.

God would convince Cain, that he was 4 in an errour, when he said, Every one that findeth me shall slay me.

God is not the God of confusion, A taxy, Levelling, 'Tis not for every one, for pri­vate persons, to act as Magistrates, in determining matters criminall, nor yet as executioners, in binding, or killing those that are worthy of bonds, or death.

It is true, He that sheddeth mans blood, by man shall his blood be shed; by man, that is, not by every man; but by the Ma­gistrate, saith Paul, speaking of the Ma­gistrate, He is the Minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that Rom. 13.4 doth evill.

Quest. 23. vers. 17.

It is said, And Cain knew his wife, why is she not call'd his sister?

[Page 731] There is no question, but Cain married Resp. his sister, but she is not so called, because God would not have this to be a standing rule; lest therefore any from hence for the future might take occasion to trans­gresse the command, there is no menti­on made of Cains wife being his sister, but onely Cain knew his wife.

The truth is, Cain could not do otherwise; for being under a command to encrease and multiply, and God creating but one man and one woman, viz. his father and mother, Marriage could not have been continued, nor mankinde propaga­ted, if he had not married his sister.

But will necessity make a thing unlawfull Object to be lawfull?

Yes, If that necessity be founded upon Resp the command of God, and not else, as in this case.

Quest. 24. vers. 17

Why Cain builded a city?

It may be for these reasons. Resp.

1. That if possible, he might evade the sentence God had pronounced against him, that he should be a runagate and a vaga­bond.

[Page 174] 2. Securitatis ergo; that being in a strange place, he might secure himselfe from the wild beasts.

3. Ad sui defensionem; that he might be the better provided against any that should go about to slay him; for his conscience told him, that every one that met him would kill him.

Quest. 25. vers. 17.

How was it possible for Cain to build a city, for where had he builders, and la­bourers for the work, or how could he re­plenish it with multitudes of men, where­in Cities, and Common-wealths do princi­pally consist?

'Tis likely that this city was not so mag­nificent, Resp. 1 and large, as those which were after­wards built, but suited to the number of persons then being in the world.

That Adam had many Sonnes, and Daughters at that time, which the Scripture 2 doth not mention.

That these Sonnes and Daughters did 3 begin to encrease, and multiply.

That Cain at the building of this City, 4 had not onely Enoch mentioned in the text, but many other Sonnes, and Daugh­ters.

[Page 175] That he calls the name of the City after 5 the name of his sonne Enoch, not be­cause he had no other children, but because he was his first-borne.

That it is likely that Cain lived after the 6 common age of those times, which was seven hundred yeares, especially if you con­sider the Lord did reserve him for an ex­ample unto life, and set a ma [...]ke on him, that no man by violence might take it a­way.

It is probable that Cain built this City, in the four hundreth or five hundreth year of 7 his age.

We read concerning the children of 8 Jacob, that they were six hundred thousand Exod. 11 37. men of warre; Now these were enough to replenish a City, and why not Cains poste­rity?

Quest. 26. vers. 17.

How could Cains building of a City suit with that punishment that God had pro­nounced against him, that he should be a fugitive and a vagabond?

'Tis not expressed how long Cain should Resp. 1 be a fugitive, and a vagabond; Cain, and his family for some time might be in such a condition, and afterwards settle.

[Page 176] Some distinguish between, a prediction or Prophecy, and a threat. A Prophecy, say 2 they, is alwayes fulfilled, but a threaten­ing, such as this is, may be mitigated; and that it is in the power of him who pronoun­ces it, to abate the severity thereof.

Though he built a City, yet he conti­nued 3 an exile, banished from his fathers house, his native countrey, from communion with the Church of God.

Although this may seem at first to be 4 contrary to what the Lord had denounced, yet doth it marvellously in truth agree with it.

The stock of Adam encreaseth, as well by Seth, as by Catn, and yet none of that fa­mily is said to build a City before the flood: And wherefore not? Because the Lord had given them the plenty of the earth, and was a stronger defence to them then the walls of any City: but Cain, who was departed from the presence of the Lord, was compelled to build a City for his defence: not for pleasure, but for securi­ty.

Learne from hence, Worldly, and wick­ed men chiefly set their minds on worldly things.

You may observe, (amongst others) [Page 177] two things concerning the sin of worldli­nesse:

1. It is the sin of professors: what is the cry in the world? (I would there were not too much cause for it) it is true, they professe much, and heare Sermons, and would be accounted Saints, but are as griping, as cove­tous, as earthly as others.

'Tis a thousand pitties, that they that have heaven at their tongues end, should have the earth at their fingers end.

2. As it is the sin of Professors, of them that pretend to holinesse, so you read not in the Scripture of any truly holy, that are branded for this sinne. Once Noah was overtaken with the love of Wine, never with the Love of the world; Lot was twice incestuous, never covetous; once David was besotted with the flesh, never bewitch­ed with the world. Peter denyed his Ma­ster, but it was not the love of the world, but the feare of the world that caused him to fall into that sin. Zaccheus had been a covetous person, but no sooner doth he take Christ by the hand, but the first thing he doth is to shake hands with cove­tousness, Halfe my goods, I give to the poore.

Qest. 27. vers. 19.

From this Scripture, where it is said, That Lamech tooke unto him two wives, it may be demanded whether Polygamy was a sinne in the time of the Law or not?

This question hath more perplexities Resp. twining about it then at first I thought it might have: I shall give you the opinion of learned men concerning it.

1. Some conceive, that Polygamy, was not a sinne in the time of the Law: the reasons they render are these:

Because we finde a Law made by God, as touching those who had more wives then Arg. 1 one, as in that text, If a man have two wives, one beloved, and another hated, and they have borne Deut. 21 15, 16. him children, both the beloved, and the hated, and if the first borne sonne be hers that was hated, then it shall be, when he maketh his sonnes to inherit that which he hath, that he may not make the sonne of the beloved first-borne, before the sonne of the hated, who is indeed the first-borne: Now if the Lord makes a Law concerning those who had more wives then one, how could it then be a sin?

This is a non sequitur: we finde Laws Resp. [Page 179] in Scripture concerning things sinfull; as, If a man strive, and hurt a woman, so that her Ex 21.22, 23. fruit depart from her, and yet no mischiefe follow, he shall be surely punished, &c. And if a­ny mischief follow, thou shalt give life for life; So concerning theft, He that stealeth a man, Exo. 21.16 and selleth him, he shall be surely put to death. So concerning the price of an harlot, Thou shalt not bring the hire of an whore, Deut. 23. 18. or the price of a dogge into the house of the Lord thy God for any vow. Arg. 2

They urge those words of the Lord to David, Thus saith the Lord, I anointed thee 2 Sam. 12. 7, 8. King over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; and I gave thee thy Ma­sters house, and thy Masters wives into thy bosome; this the Lord reckons as one of the mercies, he had bestowed on David, and therefore it was not a sin.

That phrase say some, I gave thy Ma­sters Resp. wives into thy bosome, is not to be un­derstood of Gods giving them in a way of marriage unto David, but of giving them into his power. To clear this, consider,

1. This phrase of giving into a mans bosome in Scripture doth not alwayes signifie a marriage-union; Render unto Psal 1 our neighbour seven-fold into their bosome. So in Esay, Your iniquities and the iniqui [...] [Page 180] of your fathers together, saith the Lord, which have burnt incense upon the mountaines, and bl [...]sphemed me upon the Hills therefore will I measure their former worke into their bosome.

2. David had married Sauls Daugh­ter Mi [...]hol, so that Sauls wives were Mo­thers in Law to David; now you have an expresse Law, Thou shalt not uncover the Lev. 18. 15. nakednesse of thy Daughter in Law. Now if a father ought not to uncover the na­kednesse of his Daughter in Law, then certainly a Sonne ought not to uncover the nakednesse of his Mother in Law.

2. Others conceive that Polygamy was a sinne, perswaded thereunto by these rea­sons.

From the institution of marriage in Pa­radise, Argu. 1 Therefore shall a man leave his Father, and Mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and Gen. 2. 24. they shall be one flesh.

'Tis not said, they two shall be one fl [...]sh; Object. the word two is not found in the Hebrew text.

Though it be not explicitely, yet 'tis Resp. implicitely in the text, and therefore see how our Saviour renders the words, when he urges them, Have ye not read, that he Mat: 19.4, 5. that made them at the beginning, made them male; and female, and said, For this cause [Page 181] shall a man leave Father, and Mother, and cleave to his wife, and they twaine shall be one flesh?

The word two, or twaine, doth not Object. exclude plurality, as you may see in other Scriptures; At the mouth of two witnesses Deu. 17.6. or three witnesses, shall he that is worthy of death be put to death: So in Matthew saith Christ, Mat. 18. 19. If two of you shall agree on earth, as touching any thing that they shall aske, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in hea­ven.

The word two, or twaine, is taken in Resp. Scripture inclusively or exclusively: in those places urged it is taken inclusively, but here exclusively.

By those words, two shall be one flesh, Object. is onely noted unto us, the entire love that should be between man and wife: that a man should love his wife, as his own flesh; But this doth not exclude plurality of wives. A man may love his neigh­bour as himselfe, and yet may love many neighbours.

There may be conjunctio animorum; ma­ny Resp. may be united in regard of their spi­rits, but in marriage there is not onely conjunctio animorum, sed corporum: an uni­on of spirits, but of bodies.

[Page 183] God commends this unto us, as that Object. which is well pleasing to him, that an Husband should have but one wife, but he doth not command it.

Neg. For, Matthew 19. 5. The Resp. question was asked, Is it lawfull for a man to put away his wife for every cause? Christ urges, in answer to this question, Gen. 2.24.

Lamech primus Polygamus; Polygamy had Argu. 2 its rise from Cains wicked race; there­fore likely sinfull, and displeasing to God.

3. There is a third opinion, which I finde some learned persons inclinable to close with, viz. That though Polygamy was a sin under the Law, that is to say, to Lamech and to the rest of Cains wicked progeny; yet it was not a sinne to the Patriarchs: and that though there was a law from the be­ginning, that one man should have but one wife, as, Gen. 2.24. yet as to the obli­gation of it, God gave a dispensation to the Patriarchs.

The reasons, that encline them to this opinion, are such as these.

If there were a Law whereby plurality Argu. 1 of wives were forbidden, either it was known to the Patriarchs, or not.

[Page 183] If it were known to them, then they li­ved and died in a known sinne without Re­pentance, as far as we can gather from the Scriptures.

If any say it was not known to them, then this will follow, that holy men from one generation to another lived, and died in a grosse and heinous sin, without having the least intimation of it from God, which will be hard to affirme? especially if you consider, how David, one of these ho­ly men delighted in the Law of God, and that it was his meditation day and night.

We do not read that any of the Pro­phets, Argu. 2 whom God sent on purpose to tell his people of their sinnes, gave them the least notice, concerning the sin of having more wives then one.

Neither do ye read that Lat was repro­ved Object. for his incest.

We may easily gather from the text, that Resp. it was known in those dayes, that that kind of incest was a sin; for else why did Lots Daughters make their father drunk? and if Lot knew it to be a sinne, we cannot from thence conclude the Patriarchs knew Poly­gamy to be so.

Jacob married two sisters, and yet we Object. do not read God reproved him for it.

[Page 184] The hand of God was upon Jacob for a Resp. 1 considerable part of his life; you know his complaint, Few, and evil are the dayes of the yeares of my pilgrimage.

A particular person possibly may com­mit 2 a grosse sin ignorantly, and dye with­out the knowledge of it; but it is hard to say the same of the whole Church of God.

If having more wives then one, were a 3 sin to the Patriarchs, then all their wives but one were harlots, and all their children almost base borne, which assertion sounds so harshly, that a man can take little pleasure in the entertaining of it.

Thus I have given you the severall judgements of learned men concerning this point; I shall now give you my own sense of it, (with submission to others) in severall Propositions.

1. Prop.

That we finde not in the whole book of God, at least in expresse words, that God dispensed with his Law against plurality of wives, as to the Patriarchs, and whether or no it can be proved by consequence, will appeare afterwards.

2. Prap.

That I conceive, there can no reason be rendred why the Lord should be plea­sed with the Patriarchs having more wives then one; but the same may be urged à fortiori, why it should be so, from the beginning God created but one man and one woman, he could have created more, but it did not please him so to do.

3. Prop.

That text in Malachi, is worthy our con­sideration in this case, where you have the Lord reproving his people thus. Be­cause Mal. 2. 14 15, 16 the Lord hath been witnesse between thee, and the wife of thy youth against whom thou hast dealt treacherously, yet she is thy compa­nion, and the wife of thy covenant. And did he not make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit: and wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed; therefore take heed to your spirit; and let none deale treacherously a­gainst the wife of his youth; for the Lord the God of Israel saith, he hateth putting away, &c.

I know the Lord urges this against a mans [Page 186] putting away his wife, but marke from whence he takes his rise, viz. from the primitive institution of marriage: and God argues à fortiori; If the Lord was pleased, that one man should have but one wife at first, and made a law to that end and purpose; and if a man deales treache­rously against his wife by marrying ano­ther, though he lives with them both, how treacherously hast thou dealt with the wife of thy youth, in putting her away from thee? you may be sure the Lord hates putting away.

4. Prop.

That that text of Scripture, where God reckons it as a mercy, that he gave David 2 Sam. 12. 7, 8. his Masters wives into his bosome, must not so be expounded, as if it were a mercy in it self to have many wives, but in regard of the concomitants of it: I gave thee thy Ma­sters wives into thy bosome, viz. I gave thee the Kingdome.

For it was a custome among the Jews, when a King died, and another succeeded in his stead, for the successor to have the deceased Kings wives: which was the rea­son why Solomon was so exceedingly incen­sed against Adonijah, for moving to have [Page 187] Abishag to wife, because she accompanied David, as his wife, and it was the same, as if he should aske the Crown, and so by con­sequence was guilty of treason; for marke what Solomon saith, And King Solomon answered, and said unto his Mother, And 1 King 2. 22. why doest thou aske Abishag, the Shunamite for Adonijah? aske for him the Kingdome al­so.

There were two reasons why Achito­phel perswaded Absalom to lie with his fa­thers wives on the house top, in the sight of all Israel.

1. That he might engage him into the commission of such a crime, that David neither in honour nor justice could passe by, and by consequence that himselfe and his party might not be brought to condigne punishment, which might come to passe by a close between David and Absalom.

2. Because by this act he did virtually proclaime himselfe King to all Israel.

And therefore by the way I crave leave to demurre to the two answers given by learned men to this argument, urged for­merly.

For the first, 'tis true, this phrase of giving into a mans bosome, doth not al­wayes in Scripture signifie a marriage-uni­on, [Page 188] but for all that hath yet been said, it may signifie so, if the phrase will beare it, and so it is in this case.

For the second, Though the Law of God might be against marriage with Mo­thers in Law, yet this might lye hid to the Patriarchs, it being onely deducible by consequence, and not expressely interminis in the text.

5. Prop.

That the holy Patriarchs might live, and dye in the continuall practice of this sinne, and yet be saved, because known sins re­quire particular repentance; but if sinnes be unknown, or unconsidered, by reason that men are carried away with the sway of the times (as the Patriarchs were) then a generall repentance sufficeth as David, Who can understand his errours? cleans thou me from secret faults. Psa. 19.12.

6. Prop.

That which is a grosse sin under the Go­spel, when God hath clearly revealed un­to us his minde in this Case, might be a sinne of a lesser size under the Law yea, e­ven under the dispensation of the Gospel; [Page 189] that which was an Errour of Infirmity in the time of the Apostles, at the first pro­mulgation of it, viz. that the Messiah should not suffer death, is now, after a more full, and clear discovery of the minde of God, a most grosse, and horrid blasphemy.

7. Prop.

That although the holy Patriarchs knew that there was such a Law, that a man should leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they shall be one flesh, yet it might not be cleare that the sense and meaning of that Law, was that one man should have but one wife.

8. Prop.

That Polygamy under the Law, being nothing near so heinous a sin, as Polygamy under the Gospel, the inconveniences fol­lowing thereupon, were not so great then as those which would follow now, viz. dis­grace, and reproach upon the persons com­mitting this sin, and upon their seed.

9. Prop.

That though having of many wives were [Page 190] a fault, yet it would be something an unsa­voury speech to affirme, that Abraham, and the holy Patriarchs were Adulterers; I con­ceive the Poligamy of the Fathers may be placed in the middle, between adultery and holy wedlock; they took not wives of a lewd minde, for the satisfying of their lust, but of a conscience not rightly informed in this point.

10. Prop.

That upon a serious consideration of the premises I think it safest to joyne issue with those who hold, that even the Patri­archs themselves sinned in having more wives then one.

Learne from hence to detest that dan­gerous errour of some sort of the Ana­baptists, who hold plurality of wives un­der the Gospel.

Though this assertion be so unsavoury, as that I verily beleeve it stinks in the no­strils of all those that hold Christ to be the Lord; yet because we live in such times when the Serpent casts out of his mouth wa­ter as a flood after the woman, that he might Rev. 12.15 cause her to be carried away of the flood; I shall endeavour to hold up your head a­bove water by severall considerations.

[Page 191] 1. That all the actions of the holy Pa­triarchs, though not blame-worthy, are not recorded by the Spirit of God for our imitation, but for other ends and purpo­ses.

2. That unto the following of the exam­ple of any holy person, it is not enough that we do what he did, but we must do it upon the same grounds, and for the same ends as he did it. The Apostles did not imitate Elias, by calling down fire from heaven.

3. That in the Gospel, wherever our Lord Jesus, or his Apostles speake of marriage, mention is made but of one man and one woman.

4. That although, Ephes. 5. 22. Col. 3. 18. in those two places of Scripture men­tion be made of wives, yet there is also mention made of husbands, an ordinary eye may see, haec verba accipi per distribu­tionem.

5. Our Saviour saith, Whosoever shall put a­way his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: Mat. 19.9. Now if a man when he puts away his wife, and marries another commits adultery, then if he keeps his wife and marries an­other, he commits adultery.

Our Saviour there speaks not of marrying Object. [Page 192] more wives then one, but of putting a­way those whom a man hath married.

The same Argument that our Saviour Resp. urges against Divorce, or putting away of wives, the same may be urged against Poly­gamy: he that puts away his wife, and mar­ries another, commits adultery: now thus it is in Polygamy in part, though not alto­gether; there is a kinde of putting off the first wife, in marrying another: the wife hath not the same power over the husband that formerly she had, and so by conse­quence not the same interest in him.

6. It is said in Timothy, A Bishop must be blamelesse, the Husband of one wife; now we 1 Tim. 3 2. must not think that these words referre ad bigamiam successivam, as some phrase it; to the marriage of a second wife, after the de­cease of the first: for this kinde of Polygamy is not blame-worthy, but the meaning is this, A Bishop must be blamelesse, the husband of one wife, viz. of one wife at one time.

Polygamy is forbidden to Bishops, there­fore Object. it is granted to other persons.

This is a strange Consequence, as if a Resp. man should say, A Bishop must be sober, and of good behaviour, therefore another may be intemperate, &c.

Besides all this, I might adde, [Page 193] Polygamy is against that naturall princi­ple, or maxime, Quod tihi fieri non vis alte­ri ne feceris: Whatever you would o­thers should do unto you, do ye unto them.

8. Against one main end of marriage, to avoid fornication; If a man had halfe as many wives as Solomon, I would know how the ends of marriage could be accomplish­ed?

Quest. 28. vers. 23.

What may be the meaning of that speech of Lamech to his wives: I have slaine a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt, if Cain shall be avenged seven­fold, truely Lamech seventy and seven­fold.

Some conceive, that these words speake Lam [...]chs horrour of conscience, and feare of judgement, for the murders he had commit­ted, as if he should say, If God will be a­venged on Cain, much more on me.

But here is suppositum non supponendum: for it is not said God would be avenged on Cain, but on him who killed Cain.

The Jewes have a tradition, that Lamech was so exceedingly delighted in Hunting, that notwithstanding he was old, and [Page 194] blind,, yet taking Tub all-Cain a youth, along with him, engaged in that sport, and by the direction of Tuball-Cain, he, instead of his game, killed Cain: which he under­standing afterwards, was very wroth, and in his fury killed Tuball-Cain.

But this opinion hath more absurdities following it, then one.

1. 'Tis very unlikely Lamech being old, and blind would go on hunting.

2. That Tuball-Cain was killed, when a youth, being the text saith, he was an inven­tor of arts.

3. 'Tis not likely that Cain was wandering up and down in the woods at this time, hav­ing built a City, and his family very nume­rous.

Others therefore more probably con­ceive, 2 that Lamechs speech noted his inso­lent contempt of Gods judgements, and a­buse of his patience towards Cain, Eccl. 8. 11. Because sentence against an evil worke is not executed speedily, therefore the heart [...]f the sonnes of men is fully set in them to do e­vil.

The Scripture being silent who they were that were murdered by Lamech, it is our best way to be silent also.

Notes on the fifth Chapter.

Quest. 1. vers. 2.

It is said, God created male and female, and Gen. 2. 5. blessed them, and called their name Adam; How is it then said, That Adam called his wives name Eve?

Eve was the womans proper name, Adam was a name common to them both. Resp.

Quest. 2. verse 3.

Why is it not said that Adam begat Cain or Abel in his owne likenesse, as well as Seth?

The opinions of the Learned are divers concerning this expression, he begat a sonne Resp. in his owne likenesse.

1. Some would have it expounded of the rational soul; as we may say of any other animal, that it begets a creature ac­cording to its likenesse, when a creature of its owne kinde is begotten, and brought forth.

But according to this exposition, Adam [Page 196] begat Cain and Abel, after his own like­nesse, as well as Seth: for who doubts but Cain and Abel were true men?

2. Some would have it expounded thus; he begat Seth in his own likenesse, viz. a good man like himselfe, viz de imagine pie­tatis.

But if so, why was not this said con­cerning Abel being a good man, as well as Seth?

3. Others therefore expound it rightly de privatione originalis justitiae, & corrup­tione mentis; He begat a sonne in his own likenesse, viz a sinfull man like himselfe; Homo mortalis genuit mortalem, corruptus corruptum: A mortall man begat a mortall sonne, a corrupt man begat a corrupt sonne. God at first created man in his likenesse, but afterwards man fallen begets a sonne in his own likeness, a sinfull creature like himselfe.

But this might be said of Cain, and Abel, as well as Seth: Object.

It was not said of Abel, because he had no off-spring; and corruption was to run in Resp. a blood We are all by nature the children of wrath. Nor of Cain, that it might appear, that the righteous seed are subject to origi­nall depravation, and defilement, as well [Page 197] as others: Holy persons do not beget chil­dren as Saints, and therefore their Saintship is not derived to their posterity, but their sin.

Quest. 3. vers. 3.

Whether the soul of man be generated by the Parents, or as the Learned phrase it, An anima sit ex traduce, vel per creatio­nem?

This question being full of perplexities, Resp. I shall deliver my selfe in severall Pro­positions:

1. Prop.

There is no creature the cause of it selfe, or the fountaine of its own being.

2. Prop.

That all effects, with reference to their causes, are not carried on after the same way or manner, v [...]z.

Some effects are produced by the con­course of four causes, the efficient, materi­all, formal, final; and thus are all corporeall substances.

Some by the concourse of three causes; [Page 198] viz. efficient, material, and final: as for in­stance, formae accidentales, ut nigredo, & albedo, black and white produced by three causes. 1. The efficient who workes it. 2. An end propounded in the working of it. 3. Some subject matter on which it must be wrought.

And this we may observe, that these ac­cidents depend rather on the material cause, then either efficient or finall: they depend on the efficient, and finall quoad fieri, as to their being, but on the materi­al, both as to their being, and continu­ance in their being: white and black may continue Efficiente, & finali causâ sublatis: When the efficient, and finall cause is re­moved; but this cannot be said of the sub­ject matter whereon it is wrought.

Another instance may be given in sub­stantial formes, they (the soul of man being excepted) are produced by three causes, efficient, materiall, finall; and this we may observe, there is a great deale of difference between the soul of a man, and the soul of a beast, respectu materiae: the soul of a brute can neither exist, nor act, viz sentire & ap­petere, sine materia sua, the soul of man is capable of both. Some effects againe are produced by two causes, efficient, and [Page 199] finall, thus are Angels, and rationall soules.

3. Prop.

That that phrase, that the Learned make very much use of, viz. Eductio formae è potentia materiae, is applicable to the forme of a brute, but not to the forme, or soule of a man.

The forme of a brute could not have had its being, but vi passiva materià; but the forme or soul of a man, licèt in materi­am inducitur, non tamen educitur è potentia materiae: God might (if he had pleased) have created rationall soules, and these might have lived, and acted to his praise without the concurrence; or assistance of any materiall substance whatsoever.

4. Prop.

That the Originall of formes is in profundo, very latent and Mysterious.

This was the reason, why the ancient Fa­thers differed so much in this point; Origen was of opinion that all soules were at first created together with the Angels; and afterwards put into bodies. Tertullian will have the soul ex traduce. Augustine leaveth this question undecided, neither [Page 200] dares he determine any thing: An emi­nently elegant, and learned, moderne Au­ther, tells us, that in this we may, [...], and that a modest hesitancy may be very lawfull here.

5. Prop.

That most of our Divines (with whom I humbly close) are of opinion, that the soul of man is by creation, not by traduction, or generation; their reasons are both rati­onall, and Scripturall. Rationall grounds are these.

If the soul be by propagation, it must Argu. 1 be one of these three wayes, vel per multi­plicationem, vel per divisionem substantiae ipsius animae, vel per generationem à semine aliquo: either by multiplication of the soul, or by division of the substance of the soul, or prolificâ virtute seminis.

Not the first way; for,

This action of multiplication, it must ei­ther be a naturall, or a voluntary action; if it be a naturall action, and not volunta­ry, how can it be, that a rationall soul endowed with understanding and will, should multiply it selfe, neither knowing­ly, nor willingly? If it be a voluntary action, then the cause of barrennesse will [Page 201] be seated in the will, because the soul will not multiply it selfe: If this were a truth, few rich men but would have more, and few poore men that would have so ma­ny children: Quomodo in Adulteris sequa­tur foetificatio, cùm eam maximè nol­lent?

Not the second way, by division of the substance of the soul; for why should the rationall soul be rather divisible then an Angel: when it is the common judgement of Philosophers, That spirits are indivi­sible, Omnis spiritus est [...]?.

Not the third way, Prolificâ virtute se­minis, si in & cum semine gencretur ani­ma, semen dici poterit ànimatum; si ità, an­non anima rationalis erit mortalis, quia non sempere ffuso semine sequitur prolifica­tio?

Nulla virtus activa agit ultra suum genus? Argu. 2 There is no agent can produce that which is of greater perfection, and of a more e­eminent nature and kinde then it selfe; thus the soul exceeds the body, therefore no­thing materiall or corporeall can produce the soul.

If it be objected, nothing materiall can produce such an effect, by its own naturall power, or by the helpe and assistance of [Page 202] common providence, but by the speciall hand, and power of God: it will a mount to as much as, this assertion, anima fit per cre­ationem.

As the dissolution, or corruption of the Arg. 3 body dissolveth not the soul, neither doth the constitution or generation of the body give being to the soul: if the soul had its be­ing from the body, it must decay with the body.

As the soul cannot be destroyed by any Argu. 4 materiall or physicall power, at least by the assistance of common providence: so neither can it be produced thereby: what is the reason why all the force on earth can­not reach the soul? Because it is of a spi­rituall substance: now it seemes to be as re­pugnant to right reason, for a spirituall sub­stance to be produced by any thing materi­all, as to be destroyed thereby: Especially if you consider it is farre easier to destroy, then it is to build up: there is no such art re­quired in demolishing, as there is in erect­ing of an edifice, those things which are long, and difficulty composed, and framed, are suddenly extinguished.

Scripturall grounds are these.

The creation of Adam and Eve, God's breathing into their face the breath of life, is a Argu. 1 good probable argument at least.

[Page 203] If it be objected, that this proves no­thing, because it was necessary that the soules of Adam and Eve should be by creation, when there was nothing pre-existent, whereby they might be naturally propagat­ed.

Answer may be made, that if any thing material had necessarily been required to the being of the soul of a man, as to the souls of brutes, then as the soules of other crea­tures were concreated in and with the matter of which they were made, in the like manner, in all reason should God have dealt with the soules of men: but we finde it otherwise▪ after the body was made, and the matter prepared, then the soul is infused.

The soul of Jesus Christ was created, Arg. 2 and he was in all things like unto us, sin one­ly excepted.

If it be objected, that this was extraordina­ry, that Christ might not be tainted with sin.

We may answer, Non magis difficile erat Spiritui sancto semen Josephi, quám virginis ab omni vitio purgare, &c.

I suppose Christ was borne after an ex­traordinary way, rather upon the account of the malediction, that was pronounced against our first parents, in case of eating the [Page 204] forbidden fruit, that in the day they did eat thereof; they should die the death, Then up­on the account of generation.

Ecclesiastes 12.7. Then shall the dust re­turne Argu. 3 to the earth whence it was, and the spi­rit shall returne unto God who gave it: where you have the essentiall parts of man, his bo­dy, and his soul compared one with ano­ther. The body that was compacted of dust, and it returnes to the dust from whence it was; the soul created by God, and that returnes to God that gave it. When the Spirit of God speakes of the body, he makes mention of the materiall cause; but when of the soul, onely of the efficient: and the word gave it is emp [...]haticall, and spoken by way of eminency, for God gave the body, as well as the soule.

Heb. 11.9. Furthermore, we have had fa­thers of our flesh, which corrected us, and we Argu. 4 gave them reverence; shall we not much ra­ther be in subjection to the Father of spirits? It appeares by the Antithesis the Spirit of God makes between fathers of flesh, and Father of spirits, that we receive our body from our parents, but our soul from God, he is the Father of spirits.

Now marke, how the Apostle argues, If to those from whom we receive our worser [Page 205] part, we give reverence, haw much rather should we be in subjection to the Father of spirits?

It is worthy our consideration, that God by a peculiar title, is called the Father of spirits: and herein he is opposed to the fa­thers of the flesh. Now if the soul be by traduction, those that are the fathers of the flesh would also be the fathers of the spirits, neither would God by this title be distin­guished from others.

The Objections made against this asserti­on are such as these.

Gen. 2. 2. On the seventh day God ended his worke which he had made, and he rested on Obje. 1 the seventh day from all his work which he had made. This Scripture must be understood of the workes of creation, therefore the soules of men, and women are not now crea­ted.

God after the sixth day ceased from the Resp. creation of new species, not from the creati­on of new individuals: Now the rationall soules that are now created by God, non specie, sed numero differunt, differ not in kinde, but in number from the soule of A­dam, which was at first created. Though God ceased from the work of creation in re­gard of species, yet not in regard of indivi­duals.

[Page 206] Gen. 46.26. All the soules that came with Obje. 2 Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loynes besides Jacobs sons wives, all the soules were threescore and six: soules coming out of Jacobs loines, is the same with this, that the soul of man is by generation.

The soul here is put by a synecdoche, for Resp. the totum compositum, for the whole man. Now though the soul may not be said to be generated, yet the totum compositum, or the man may, as hereafter shall be demon­strated.

If the soul of man be not produced by generation, then man is in a worse conditi­on Obje. 3 then a plant, or a brute, which can and do beget soules suitable to their kinde, viz. animam vegetativam, & sensitivam.

Man is in a better condition then a brute, even in regard of generation, because by Resp. that very act, Nobilissima forma unitur cum materia.

That which is urged advances the con­dition of man, and not lowers or debases it; we may observe the lesse use God makes of second causes in the carrying on of any work, the more excellent that work is, viz. Adam and Eve exceeded their poste­rity in soul and bodily perfections: the bo­dy of Christ, that was formed in an ex­traordinary [Page 207] way by the Spirit of God, was of a finer make, and a more excellent composure then the body of any man or woman in the world, and this may be the reason which made his torments on the cross exquisitely painfull.

It is true, we read of some, that were rolled in barrells stuck with nayles, and of others, whose flesh was plucked off with hot iron pinchers, and of others that have been broyled on a Gridiron; their deaths might be more harsh, and severe in them­selves considered, then the death of Christ, and yet Christ might suffer as much, or more bodily paine, then they: Accord­ing to the rules of Philosophy we say, That the nature, and quality, and measure of paines, must be taken not so much from the force or violence of the agent, as from the condition and temper of the patient; the fire hath not the same operation upon Gold, as it hath upon Lead. The lead suffers a great deale more from the fire, then the gold. If a man should deale blowes with an even hand, on a sound body and on a sickly crazy body, their pain would be, unequal, though the blowes were equall: now to our purpose, without question, the body of Christ was soft, and tender. Aristotle hath this rule, [Page 208] Quò complexio nobilior, mensque dexterior, eò mollior, ac tenerior solet esie caro: The more noble the complexion, and the more dextrous the mind, the more soft, and tender the body: The body of Christ was of a most excellent temperament: Quae fiunt per miraculum excellentiora sunt, quám quae fiunt per naturam; Those things that are done by miracle, are more excellent, then those things that are done by naturall causes; viz. the wine that Christ made at a marri­age in Cana of Galilee, and the body of Christ.

If God creates the soul of all those, that are Object. begotten then he concurres with whore­mongers, and adulterers in the act of gene­ration: Nam fornicariis, & adulterinis con­ceptibus animas creat, & largitur, quod vide­tur absurdum.

A learned Author answers a like case to Resp. this elegantly, God is not the author of sin, and yet there is concurrence of divine provi­dence about sinon: there is a concurrence of God to a sinfull action, yet not to the sinful­nes of an action; to the action, though not to the action as sinful; To lift a hand up against a child of God for righteousnesse sake, is a sinfull action, yet a man could not do it without the common assistance of Gods [Page 209] providence; for in him we live, and move, and have our being; the strength of a wick­ed mans hand, while he sins is from the Lord, yet the Lord doth not strengthen his hand to sin. The sinner hath naturall help from God, but he hath not morall help from God: suppose a Musician should touch, or play upon a Lute, that is out of tune, his touching the Lute is an artificiall act; but the sounding of it, comes from the nature of the instrument; the sound simply considered is from the hand of him that playes upon it; but that it sounds, untuneably is because it is out of tune. The Lord by naturall assistance puts the hearts and hands of wicked men into mo­tion, but that they move irregularly, that they make such harsh musick, that there is such discord in their actions, is from the disorder, and untunablenesse of their own spirits. To eat was a naturall act in our first parents, this was from God, but to eat against the command, was a morall act, and this was from man; so in this case, to beget children is a naturall act, and this is from God, but to act the adul­terer or fornicatour in it; is a sinful act, and this is from man.

Quest. 4. vers. 3.

How it can be said, that Adam begat a son in his likenesse, anim a hominis est homo, the soul of a man is the man, and therefore if the soul be not generated, how can the man be said to be generated?

To this question learned men answer se­verall Resp. wayes.

1. Some say, one man may be said to be­get another quia in generatione suppedit at materiam ex qua fit homo, but this cannot consist with Principles of Reason: For,

1. Then it would follow, that the body of man was onely generated, and not the man

2. It is one thing to afford a Carver matter of which he may make a statue, and another thing to frame it.

3. To beget a man, is tribuere [...] esse ho­mini, To give being to a man; now a man doth not consist of soule alone, or body a­lone, but of body, and soul united.

2. Others say, one man may be said to beget another, because the vegetative and sensitive powers of the soule are from man, though the intellectual be from God.

But this neither doth not savour like Resp. [Page 211] truth, because according to this opinion one man could not be said to beget another, sed hoc vivens, et hoc animal.

3. Others more probably say that one man may be said to beget another, though the soule be created by God, quia ab homine generante sit ipsa actio, quâ anima rationalis substantialiter corpori unitur. Because in generation, the rationall soule is substanti­ally united to the body. Quid enim est aliud producere hominem, quàm efficere ut existat homo, seu ens constans exanima, et corpore.

Res est per formam. Object.

Est per formam potiùs quàm per materi­am. Resp.

But if God create the soule, and infuse it Object. into the body, the uniting of soule and body is rather to be attributed to God then to man.

When God infuses the soule into the Resp. body, the soule (I meane so far as concerns that art) is united to the body, non substanti­aliter, sed localiter. It is not to be denied, but in the same instant, wherein the soule is lo­cally present with the body, it is substanti­ally united to the body: yet these two differ one from the other: an Angell, when it assumes a body, is locally present with that body it assumes, and yet is not sub­stantially [Page 212] united to it, ut forma materiae, so as to be a part of the Angel, as the soul is a part of man.

Quest. 5. verse 3.

Whether this Doctrine of the creation of the soul, may consist with the doctrine of Originall sin?

Affirmatively we may answer, as I suppose, Resp. safely, though this was that which made Augustine to demurre about it: He was very enclinable to the doctrine of the soules cre­ation, if it could consist with Original guilt.

The main Objection against the do­ctrine Obje. 1 of the soules creation with reference to Original sin, is this.

If the soul of man be by creation, it is ei­ther created pure or impure.

Not impure, for so God would be the au­thor of sin.

Not pure, for then it will follow, that it either remaines pure after its union with the body, which nullifies the doctrine of Originall sin, or else that the soul may be infected by the body, corpore infici pos­se spiritum, which is equally absurd.

That consequence is to be denyed, viz. Resp. 1 if the soul of man be by creation, it is cre­ated impure, and it is like such a conse­quence [Page 213] as this, If God creates the soul, creat risibilem, he creates it in a capacity to laugh: Now a weak eye will see the absurdity of such a consequence, be­cause risibility is competible to the whole man consisting of body and soul; in like manner, Originall defilement is not com­petible to the soul any otherwise, then as it is united to the body, and is altera pars constituens composi [...]um.

So then, though the soul be created by God, and that it be tainted with sin, immediately after its creation, and infusion into the body, yet it will not follow God created an impure soul; for,

1. The soul as created by God, is free from sinfull defilement.

2. The soul immediately upon its uni­on with the body, is corrupted, and infect­ed.

3. That this corruption and defilement, (so farre as concernes the creation of the soul, is per accidens) though in regard of Gods ordination it admits of another consi­deration.

4. That which is competible to the creature per accidens, considered as a sin of Adam, and not as a creature, cannot be charged upon the Creator under that notion [Page 214] considered; because this is a perplex­ed case, I shall endeavour to illustrate it.

A Parent runs in debt, he dies the debt, by the Lawes and constitutions of this Na­tion; is transmitted to the heire now though God may be said to be the Creator of the soul of the debtor, yet not in the least the author of the debt, because this man is indebted per accidens, and by vertue of his parents not by vertue of Gods creati­on.

That consequence is to be taken into 2 consideration, if the soul be created by God, then it is infected by the body, and then we must affirme, corpore infici posse spi­ritum, which is an absurdity; for,

1. Though the truth of this axiome be taken for granted, that Corpus non potest agere in spiritum, yet I conceive we may de­murre to it.

For though it should be assented unto, that this could not be done by the power of nature, yet it may be done by the efficacy and power of divine ordination.

Especially if we consider, what a strict union there is between the soul and the bo­dy, and that according to the various dis­position, and affecton of the body, the [Page 215] soul also is variously affected, and dispo­sed: We finde by experience, that chil­dren resemble their parents not onely in their countenance, and the outward linea­ments of their body, but in their manners, and inward habiliments of their mind.

We finde, that the soul in a great measure followes the temper of the body, and that the spirits, humors, organs of the body being vitiated and disordered, there followes upon this frenzy, Melancholy, passion, and the like.

The Learned say, Potentia materiae est du­plex.

1. Naturalis, quae educibilis est in actum vi alicujus agentis naturalis: There is a naturall power in that which that materiall or cor­poreall which is educible into act, by vertue of a naturall agent; that is to say, wood hath a naturall power to receive heat, viz. vi naturalis agentis scilicet ignis.

2. Obedientialis, an obediential power, which is educible into act by vertue of a superior agent; this wood or stone hath an o­bediential power to be formed into astatue, for this is not effected by a natural agent (which doth necessariò agere; but by vertue of an Artist: such a power also hath the soul to receive spiritual gifts, the supernatural [Page 216] gifts of the Spirit, as faith, hope, &c.

We say the work of conversion is possibile naturae, though impossibile naturâ; possible to nature, though impossible to be wrought by a natural power. Obediential power of a subject to receive a new form, puts not any causall power in the thing or matter to be changed, all such power is without, viz. in the efficient: there is onely a power of rece­ption in the thing or matter, not a power of causality.

Now we may take into consideration whether vi superioris agentis, corpus may not agere in spiritum.

To this, I might adde the consideration of the fire of hell (which, for ought I can learne, may be material, and yet can t [...]r­ment spirits) as calor naturalis hath two pro­perties, 1. Calefacere, to make warme, and this it acts of it selfe. 2. Alimentum in debitas partes distribuere, To convey nourishment into the severall parts of the body, and this it acts as an instrument of the soule; so Hel­fire may be considered in its selfe, and so it burnes bodies, or as an instrument of divine wrath, and so it torments spirits.

2. Be it granted, that the soule is created pure by God, and that it cannot be tainted by the body, yet it may be polluted ratione [Page 217] suppositi, by Gods ordination, and appoint­ment, as it is the soul of a man, son and heir of corrupt Adam.

If you aske me, Supposing this be taken for granted, that we are defiled upon the ac­count of divine ordination, as a punishment inflicted by God on man, for his apostasie, by what instrument or second cause, this is effected, or brought to passe.

I answer, that as there is nothing more secret then the forming of the child in the wombe, the union of the soul with the body, and the manner how it is united thereunto: so this also must needs be a secret, by he mediation of what instrument, or second cause man comes to be defiled.

There are also other Objections urged against the doctrine of the creation of the soul.

It seems not to suit with the justice, and Obj. 2 goodnesse of God, to shut up a pure, and innocent soul into a stincking prison, and to thrust it as it were into abridewell, that it might be corrupted there.

The consequence is to be deny'd, for he Resp. 1 may be said to act unjustly, that acts con­trary to what he is bound to do according to principles of justice: but God is not bound to infuse the soules of the sonnes of [Page 218] Adam, who sinned in Adam, and meri­ted thereby eternall death into pure bo­dies: But rather the contrary, according to the curse, In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt dye the death.

We say that God doth infuse a pure soul into an impure body, as the phrase may vul­garly be taken, for that would imply that our souls, before they were united to our bodies, were pure, which suits not with our principles formerly mentioned.

Causa causae, est etiam causa causat [...]: Obj. 3 The cause of the cause is also the cause of that which is caused by that cause, viz. if God be the cause of the union of the soul with the body, therefore he is the cause of that sinne that is occasioned by that uni­on.

This rule is to be understood de causis Resp. perse, not de causis per accidens, viz. God is the cause of his divine Law, the Law is the cause of sinne per accidens: as the Apostle, I was alive without the Law once; but when the Commandment came, sin revived, and I Rom. 8.9. died. Yet no man will from thence conclude, that God was the cause of sin.

How can Originall sin be propagated, Obj. 4 and not the soul? Non potest accidens tra­duci sine subjecto.

[Page 219] Accidents do frequently transire à sub­jecto Resp. 1 in subjectum, non transeunte subjecto, as for instance, heresie is propaged in these dayes, and derived from one to another, but so is not the soul which is the subject of these errours.

The same numericall accident, cannot transire à subjecto in subjectum; but so may the same in kind, as appeares in the former instance.

Quest. 5. vers. 4.

According to what space of time, the yeares of the Patriarchs were measu­red?

The great age of the Patriarchs hath Resp. enclined some to believe, that their yeares did not containe the same space of time, with those after the flood, and with ours to this day.

Indeed we read of two periods of time especially, by the ancients called yeares.

1. There was annus solaris, or that which they called their solar yeare: which was the same with ours, and contained. 12. moneths: Now this yeare was called solaris, because it was measured by the Suns passing through the Zodiack.

[Page 220] 2. There was annus lunaris, or that which they call their lunar yeares: the same with our moneth or thereabouts: now this was called Lunaris, because it is measured by the Moons passing through the Zodiack.

Some think that the yeares of the Pa­triarchs were Lunar yeares, The dayes of A­dam were eight hundred yeares, that is, say Gen. 5.4. they, eight hundred moneths, &c.

Now this cannot in any case be allowed, for these reasons.

1. Enoch begat children at 65. yeares of age, verse 21. of this Chapter; now how could this be, if he lived but so many moneths?

2. Metheuselah lived 969 yeares, but if you cast up these by moneths, you will find that in our dayes, some might be said to live longer then Methuselah.

3. Abraham is said to live 175. yeares, Gen. 25.7. and in the next verse it is said that Abraham gave up the ghost, and died in a good old age, an old man and full of yeares. How could this also be said, if he lived but so many moneths?.

Quest. 6. verse 4.

Whether in any sense it may be said, that [Page 221] Adam was the longest liver amongst the Pa­triarchs?

Affir. Vritually, though not formally, A­dam Resp. was created in a perfect state of body, apt for generation, which probably then was not under 60 yeares; for none of the Patriarchs begat children under that age: Now adde 60 yeares unto the time that Adam lived, and you will finde he lived longer then Methuselah.

Quest. 7. vers. 4.

What account may be given of the long lives of the Patriarchs?

For the right understanding of this con­sider, Resp.

1. That since Moses time, who was borne in the yeare of the world 2434. when the world was well peopled, and necessary sciences depending upon observation per­fected, the length of mans age hath little or nothing abated, as appeares by that fa­mous testimony of Moses himselfe, Psal. 90. 10.

2. That in all times since Moses we shall finde some that have exceeded the num­ber of yeares, accounted the utmost period of mans life; as Joshua, Chap. 24.29.

[Page 222] 3. That reasons both naturall and morall are given by the learned, why the Patri­archs lived, by many yeares, longer then those who succeeded them in after-ages, viz.

The first reason is, the feeding of the infant with the milk of a strange brest.

Now because this is growne into fashi­on in these licentious, and corrupt dayes, and unnaturall curiosity hath taught all women but the beggar, to finde out nur­ses for their children, which onely necessity should allow: let it not seeme a digression if I propound some Queries concerning this practice.

1. Quaere.

Whether God hath not given brests to women, for this very end, and purpose that they might feed, and nourish their chil­dren?

2. Quaere.

Whether this be not clearly demonstra­ted, by the milk flowing into the breasts immediately after the child is borne, and a great part of the parents meat being con­verted into that substance?

3. Quaere.

Whether putting out of children to nurse, be not the occasion of unnaturall af­fection, both in the Mother to the child, and the child to the Mother.

4. Quaere.

Whether God hath not taught us by his dispensations to other creatures that the Mothers milke, is most kindly and natu­rall to the child; we see other things are nourished by the same of which they are bred: the earth yields plants and nourishes them, the trees bring forth fruit, and yield sap unto them: and the same also may be said of Brutes.

5. Quaere.

Whether such children as are nursed by the mother do not usually thrive best?

6. Quaere.

Whether parents that might have nur­sed their owne children and will not, be not [Page 224] accessory to the death of those that are cast away by the nurses negligence?

7. Quaere.

Whether this may not be a great cause of bodily distempers in the parents, the draw­ing of the brest, (if moderation be observed) having a rationall tendency toward the preservation of Health?

8. Quaere.

Whether strange milke may not be a cause of distempers in the childe: for as Con­traria contrariis curantur, so similia similibus alunter, and whether the blood which was first the fabricator, should not be the altor when turned into milk?

9. Quaere

Whether the milke of the nurse hath not a great influence upon the body of the child? The learned tell us, that take a kid, and let it suck an ewe, the hair of it will become like unto wool: and take a Lambe and let it suck a goat, the wool of it will become like goats haire we our selves finde a difference [Page 225] in the flesh of creatures according to the coursenesse, or finenesse of that food with which they are brought up.

10. Quaere.

Whether the soul following in some measure the temper of the body, the milke of the nurse may not have some influence upon the manners, and disposition of the child? Some give us this reason, why Ti­berius caesar was a drunkard, because he sucked a drunken nurse: and whether in this the parents may not be the occasion of the drunkennesse and excesses of their chil­dren?

11. Quaere.

Whether when God pronounces it, as a curse to have dry brests, it be not an unworthy piece of ingratitude, for parenrs, when God gives them nourishment for their child, not to account it worthy of their ac­ceptance? And whether to turne the back upon any courtesy, would not be account­ed a piece of incivility among the Heathens themselves in their dealings one with an­other?

12. Quere.

Whether when God provides proper nourishment for a child to be ministred by the brest of the parent, and refused, this act doth not interpretatively charge God with folly; and whether in such a case the parent doth not set up his, or her wisdome above Gods?

13. Quaere.

Whether Sarah might not have pleaded as much and more, then the Gallants of our age, for putting out her child to nurse, being the wife of an honourable person, and of a great age?

14. Quaere.

Whether although we read of nurses in the Scripture, it can be made out, that any good woman put forth her child, when she was able to nurse it her self?

A second reason, why our lives are shor­tened 2 in regard of our ancestours, is hasty marriages: while nature is yet greene, and growing, we rent from her, and replant her branches, while her selfe hath not [Page 227] yet any root sufficient to maintaine her own top.

The use of much physick, and little exer­cise, 3

The pressing of nature with weighty bur­dens, and when we finde her strength de­fective, 4 the help of strong waters, hot spices, and provoking sawces, which or­dinarily used impaires our health, and shor­tens our dayes That which may for the pre­sent cheare, and exhilarate the spirits, may be an enemy to long life. Hence it is, that the Highlanders in Scotland, and the wild Irish commonly live longer then those of a softer education, and more tender bringing up. Seneca, Multos morbos mul­ta fercula fecerunt; Variety of dainty dish­es hath bred variety of diseases: A man may die wirh cordials, and fire nature out of its place.

Besides this which hath been said, I sup­pose there may be two main reasons gi­ven of the long lives of the Patriarchs.

1. Propagation of posterety.

2. Promotion of piety; for at that time the Church having not the Scriptures, but be­ing guided by extraordinary revelations from God, lest the worship of God might be brought into contempt, by posterity, the [Page 228] lives of Holy men were of long continuance, which might be an expedient to enforce reli­gion on those who succeeded.

Let the consideration of the frailty of our bodies teach us to consult for the good of our immortall soules. We may observe many times it so falles out, that our rational life is best, when our vegetative is worst; and, we begin to grow in wisdome, when we cease to grow in strength. As it is with the rationall life, so it should be with the spirituall: when the life of the flesh is ready to dye, the spiritual life should have so much the more spirit, and vigour.

Quest. 8. V. 24.

It is said in this verse, that Enoch was not, for God tooke him: now the question here may be, whether Enoch was translated in soule and body, or whether in soule only &c?

Some thinke that Enoch was translated Resp. in soule only, and not in body; and they say, he died in the translation, so as his soule only was taken up to heaven, and his body slept in the earth.

I shall propound their arguments, and give you the answers rendered there­unto.

[Page 229] No mortall body unglorified can enter Argu. 1 into heaven: But there is no mention of his glorification Ergo.

It is a slender kinde of arguing, to say, that Resp. 1 a thing is not scriptural, because it is not ex­pressely mentioned in the Scripture.

The glorification of his body is plainly implied, though not expressed; for it is said, 2 he was translated, that he should not see death. Heb. 11.5.

Now if his body saw not death, it was made immortall, which is a speciall part of glorification.

If the bodies of Enoch and Elias were tran­slated Argu. 2 into heaven, then it will follow that some ascended into heaven, before Christ ascended thither: But this seemes not to be allowed; for heaven to us (as Paradise to A­dam) was shut up, till Christ opened it by hsme rits.

We readily grant, that the opening of Resp. 1 heaven, the celestiall Paradise, is to be ascri­bed to the merits of Christ.

We confidently deny, that heaven was 2 then only opened, when Christ actually suffered or ascended up into heaven: and we cannot but peremptorily assert, that the force, and efficacy of the merits of Christ extended to Old Testament-Saints, long before Christs coming in the flesh; for the [Page 230] Lord Jesus was a Lambe slain from the foun­dation of the world; Christ the same yesterday, to day, and for ever; and our Fathers under Old Testament-dispensations, ate the same spiritu­al meat, and drank the same spiritual drink, as we do under the Gospel, viz. the body of Christ crucified, and his blood shed for the remission of sinnes: and these things though they were future to hope, yet they were pre­sent to faith, which is the Substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seene.

From, Joh. 3.13. And no man hath a­scended Arg. 3 up to heaven but he that came downe from heaven, even the Son of man, which is in heaven. By which words (say some) is sig­nified that no man bodily ascended into heaven, untill the time of Christs a­scension.

This place is to be expounded Metaphori­cally: Resp. No man hath ascended into heaven, so as to know the secrets of the Almighty, and to lie in the bosome of the Father, but onely Christ; and indeed the context gives great light to this Exposition; for the Lord Jesus would by this convince Nico­demus, that he was more able to teach him heavenly mysteries, then all the Do­ctors among the Jewes: as you may per­ceive, [Page 231] by vers. 11. and 12. Verily I say un­to thee, We speak that we do know, and [...]es­tifie that we have seen [...], &c. And besides, Prov. 30. 4. Ascending up into heaven is made all one with the knowing of holy things.

From, Heb. 6.20. Where Christ is cal­led Arg. 4 the forerunner. And Christ saith, John 14. I go to prepare a place for you. Therefore before Christs death, and ascen­sion a place was not prepared.

Christ might be called a forerunner Resp. 1 in respect of those who died after his ascen­sion.

Christ might be called the forerunner of 2 his Saints under the Old Testament, in re­gard of the effi [...]acy of his merits.

That a place was prepared for Old Tes­tament-Saints 3 by Christ, but with respect to his future sufferings, and merits, and therefore though a place might be said to be prepared for Enoch, and Elias, yet it was necessary Christ should die, and Christ should ascend.

From, Col. 1.15. where Christ is called Arg. 5 the first-borne of every creature; and, verse 18. in all things to have the preeminence; and, Rom. 8.29. he is called the first-born a­mong many brethren.

[Page 232] The primogeniture of Christ doth not Resp. consist in this, that no man, either in regard of body or soul, or both, ascended into heaven before Christs coming in the flesh; but in this, that no man hath, nor shall ever come thither, but by the vertue, and efficacy of his merits; As Christ is called the first-fruits of them that sleep, not because none a­rose 1 Cor. 15. [...]0. before Jesus Christ, but because he alone arose by his owne power, and is the cause of the resurrection of all those that have or shall arise unto glory: s [...] here, Christ alone ascended into heaven by his owne power, and is the cause of the ascension of his peo­ple unto glory.

To whom be glory for ever, Amen.


Directions FOR The right understanding Of the SCRIPTURES.

1. Rule

THere are tropes or figura­tive expressions which are made use of by the Spirit of God in the Scriptures, which if not war [...]ly observed, will occasion a misunderstanding of the text: The Scriptures are adorned with various kinds of Elegancies, and Rhetoricall expressions, demulcere animos legentis: Amongst many others, I shall instance in two.

1. The figure, called [...], a figure, [Page 234] whereby one thing is signified by two severall Noune substantives; As, The Lord will create upon every dwelling place of Mount Sion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud a [...]d smoke by day: viz. a smoaky cloud. Isa. 4. 5 So, I indeed baptize you with water unto re­pentance, but he that cometh after me, is Mat. 3.11 mightier then I, whose shoes I am not worthy to beare, he shall baptize you with the Ho­ly Ghost, and with fire, viz. with the holy Ghost, as with fire. Sad consequences may follow upon the literall Interpretation of this Scripture. I have read that the Abyseni tooke this text literally and when they baptized their children, they poured water upon them, and then marked them with an hot iron.

2. The figure, called Ironia, whereby we speak one thing, and meane another, but signifie our meaning, either by our gesture, or manner of speaking; this man­ner of speech, though it be often abused unto sinne, as in deriding and scorning our brethren, yet is in it selfe lawfull, if rightly used; and of this we have ex­ample in the Scriptures. Such a speech was that of Michaiah to wicked Ahab, Go up and prosper. If this figure were not 1 King. 22. 15 observed, we might question the truth of [Page 235] this Scripture, for Ahab did not prosper, neither was Ramoth-Gilead gven into his, hand. Such a speech was that of Elias in deriding the folly of Baals Priests, Crya a­loud, for he is a God, either he is talking, or 1 King. 18. 27 he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or perad­venture he sleepeth, and must be awaked. Such was Pauls speech, For what is it where­in ye were inferiour to other Churches, except 2 Cor. 12. 13 it be that I my selfe was not burdensome to you? forgive me this wrong, viz. all the wrong I did you, was this: whereas I might have required maintenance from you, I wrought with my hands, and maintained my selfe, pray forgive me this wrong.

2. Rule

The proper Idioms of speech which are made use of by the Spirit of God in the holy Languages Hebrew and Greek, are heedfully to be observed. There is not a Language, but hath some phrases peculiar, and proper to it selfe. He would be laught at, by all those that pretend but to a little skill in Learning, that would go about the translation of Cicero, or Virgil word for word into En­glish, and the reason is, because English hath [Page 236] some phrases proper to it selfe, the Latine hath some phrases proper to it selfe: to give you instances proper for this Rule. The Pharisee said, I fast twice in the week, Luke 18. 12, In the Originall it is, [...], I fast twice in the Sabbath; yet it is not translated so, because Sabbath amongst us, is a word propriate to the Lords-day. So in another place: If they come from market, (speaking of the Pharisees) except they w [...]sh, they eat Mare 7. 4. not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups and pots, &c. In the Originall the words are [...], the Baptisme of pot [...]s, but we translate it not so, because Baptisme amongst us, is a word propriate to a Sa­crament. So we read, When Jesus wos borne in Bethelem of [...]udea in the dayes of H [...]rod Mat. 2. 1. the King, behold, there came wise men from the East to Jerusalem. The wise men came from the East. In the Originall it is [...], but we translate it not Magicians, because amongst us, it is a word propriate to sorcerers.

3. Rule

We are not onely to minde that which is written, but the minde of the writer. As for instance, Paul saith; When it pleased [Page 237] God, who separated me from my Mothers womb, Gal. 1.15. 16.17. and called me by his grace, to reveale his Sonne in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood; neither went I up to Jerusalem, to them which were Apostles before me, &c. These words, if you observe not the scope, and aime of him that writ them, may seeme to savour of a [...]rogance, that Paul should not in a businesse of so great concernment, conferre with them that were Apostles be­fore him: and therefore Pauls designe here­in is to teach us, that when a truth is clearly revealed to us by God, we are not to dis­pute, to consult with flesh and blood, whether we shall close with it, or not. And truely we must observe this, as well in what men do, as in what men write or speake: The Physician cuts the body, the thiefe cuts the body, yet we make a difference be­tween what the Physician doth, and what the thiefe doth, because their aime is not the same. Hence also is that Axiome, used amongst Politiques: The reason and equity of a Law, should rather be observed then the letter. There is in Laws, an equitable, and a literall sense; the Law taken abstract from its originall reason, and end, is a shell without a kernell, a shadow without a sub­stance, [Page 238] and a body without a soul; nor need this equity be expressed in the law, being so naturally implyed, and supposed in all laws. As when the Militia of an Army is com­mitted to a Generall, it is not with any ex­presse condition, that he should not turne the mouths of his Cannons against his owne souldiers, for that is naturally and necessarily implied, and therefore needless to be expressed, insomuch as if he did at­tempt or command such a thing against the nature of his trust and place; it did ipso facto estate the Army in a right of disobedience; except we think, that obedience binds men to cut their owne throats.

4. Rule

The knowledge of the originall Lan­guages is of great use for the under­standing of the Scritures. I grant our Saviour chose unlearned men for his Disci­ples, but he made them learned before he made use of them. Now that which they had by extraordinary revelation, must be supplied to us by education, for miracles are ceased; and therefore Paul gives in charge to Timothy, Till I come give attendance to read­ing. 1 Tim. 4. 13, 15. And ver. 15. Meditate on these [Page 239] things, that thy profiting may appeare to all. And here I would observe, that though some of those whom Christ called were unlearned yet others were learned; as, Paul, Nathaniel, Nicodemus. If the most of those whom Christ called had been learned, the world would have said he had made choice of them for their wisdome; if none of those whom Christ called had been learn­ed, the world would have said, they had been deceived, out of their weakness, and ig­norance.

It cannot be denyed, but that there are some Sermons preached, that have more learning in them, then divinity: Saint Au­gustine bewailed this as the vanity of his youth, that he had framed discourses, ut placerent magis quam ut docerent, to please rather then to profit. Humane learning is to be used in exercises, non ut esculenta, sed ut condimenta, not as meat, but as sawce. A man would be loath to have sawce onely brought him for his dinner. Learning beautifies, and adornes a Sermon, as [...]ace sets out a garment; yet we would not be willing to have a garment altogether of lace.

Learning may be abused, but certainly there is a very good use to be made of it, [Page 240] by the Ministers of the Gospel; some say, God in Scripture hath not appointed Universities: grant we this, no more hath God expr [...]sly appointed Schooles, to teach children to read: and indeed what need was there, when God had commanded us to search the Scriptures. Qui vult finem, vult me­dia.

Translations are excellent helps (and blessed be the Name of the great Jehovah, that we have the benefit of them) yet the Learned will tell you in regard of the Em­phasis, and fulnesse of the Originall, they may say as the Queene of Sheb [...]; that which she heard was nothing to the glory of that which she [...]aw. I my selfe (though I do not pretend to be in the number of those above mentioned) falling into discourse with one acounted eminent for konwledge in Religi­on, but He [...]erdox in judgment, conferring with him concerning the worke of soul­humbling, and urging that text, Come unto me all ye that are weary▪ & heavy-laden, &c. He told [...]e that coming to Christ was before weary and heavy-laden; Whereas if he had read but his Grammar, he might have known that though coming to Christ, go before being weary and heavy-laden, in order of words; yet weary and heavy-laden, go [Page 241] in construction, and in order of sense. So it is said there of the Gentiles, that As Act. 13: 48 many as were or dained to eternall life, believed. Some tell us, the words should be ren­dered thus, As many as were addicted to eternall life, beleeved, viz. as many as were addicted, and disposed heaven-ward after­wards beleeved; whereas the words in the Original run thus, [...], And they beleeved, as ma­ny of them as were ordained to eternall life; that word which is placed in the last place in our English Bibles, (which I suppose might be one occasion of the mistake,) is placed in the fi [...]st in the Greek.

5. Rule.

In the interpreting of Scriptures, we must observe who it is that speaks, whether a Prophet, or one of a more private capacity; if it be a Prophet, whether he speakes in his owne person, or in anothers If he speakes in the person of another, we must observe whether he speaks in the person of God or man, or of a good man or a wicked man? These things must carefully be heeded, if you would understand the Scriptures; [Page 242] for instance, Solomon personates the Atheist. That which befalleth the sonnes of men, befal­leth Eccl. 3.19. beasts, even one thing befalleth them, as the one dieth, so dieth the other, yea, they have all one breath so that a man hath no preemi­nence above a [...]east; and whereas the Atheist heard some speak of the ascent of mans spi­rit, he replies, Who knoweth the spirit of a ver. 21. man, that goeth upward? viz. Who can tell there is such a difference between a man and a beast? This is not known, onely talked of and guessed. A learned Author enlarges himselfe on this Scripture thus: Is it not strange, saith he, that any of those who are called sober Christians, should plant their opinion in this soyle of Athe­isme, and make that a proofe of their faith which Solomon onely brings as a proof of some mens infidelity? there is no more rea­son to ground the tenet of the soules morta­lity on this text, then there is encourage­ment unto intemperancy from that, Rejoyce, Oh young man, in thy youth, &c. Eccl. 11.9.

6. Rule.

The Scripture is the word of truth, and yet every thing that is writen in the Scriptures considered without reference [Page 243] to the context or the person that speaks, is not truth; hence is that rule made use of by Divines in this case, Scripturae narratio quam­vis verissima sit, non tamen omnia quae ibi dicta sunt vera esse dicuntur; for instance: He casteth out Divels, through Beelzebub, the Luk. 11.15. chief of Divels; The words in themselves considered, are blasphemous, and false, and yet the Script [...]ral narration of them is true.

7. Rule.

In the expounding of Scripture, we are not so much to respect from whence words are de [...]ived, as how they are used; this Axiom is out of Aquinas, & the School-men; Verbis non tam spectandum ex quo, [...]uàm ad quid sumantur; as we see the branches of trees spread much further then their roots, so derivative words are often of lar­ger extent of signification then their primi­tives; as for instance, [...], signifies a sound, or an echo, but [...], signifies to Catechize or to i [...]struct in the principles of religion: That thou mightest know the certainty of those things wherein thou hast been i [...]structed, [...] Luke. 1.4. [...]: so the word [...], signifieth tin­go, to dip, or plunge into the water, yet [...], is frequently, if not alwayes, ta­ken [Page 244] more largely, for an [...] kind of washing, rinsing or cleansing, where there is no dip­ping at all, the Apostles were baptized with fire, yet they were not dipt into it; tables & beds are said in the originall to be baptized, viz. washed, not dipt; the Israelites in the wildernesse were baptized with the cloud, yet not dipt into it; the children of Zebedee were to be baptized with the Baptisme of blood, wherewith our Saviour was bapti­zed, yet neither he nor they were dipt into blood; so the Ancients speake of the Bap­tisme of tears▪ wherewith all penitents are washed, yet there is no dipping in such a B [...]ptisme.

8. Rule.

We must not only take notice of those phrases or words which are made use of by the Spirit of God in the Scr [...]ptures, but also in what respect those phrases or words are made use of in that particular text which we desire to understand for in­stance it is said▪ This is life eternall, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent: If the Father be Joh. 17.3 the only true God, how then is the Son or the Holy Ghost God? For the answer­ing of this difficulty, we must consider up­on [Page 245] what account, Christ calleth God Father in this place: we must know therefore, that verse 1. though he [...]seth the word Father: yet Father is nor there taken for the first person in the Trinity, but as a common at­tribute of the Deity; so it is elsewhere taken: our Saviour in his Prayer teacheth us Mat. 6.9 to say, Our Father; so, V. 14. If ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; according to which in­terpretation, this text is parallel to that of the Apostle: There is one God, and one Me­diatour betwixt God and man, the man Christ 1 Tim. 2.5. Jesus.

So in John it is said, The Spirit of truth which proceedeth from the Father, he shall te­stifie Joh. 15.26 of me: Now if this rule be not ob­served, here will arise a difficulty: if the Spirit proceed from the Father onely, how doth he proceed from the Father, and the Son? We must consider therefore upon what account the Spirit is said to proceed from the Father, in the place above alledged: viz. because he proceedeth from the Father originally, not because he proceedeth from the Father only; elsewhere he is called the Spirit of the Son: And because ye are sonnes, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into Gal. 4.6. your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.

9. Rule.

In the time of St. Paul the Iewish cere­monies were things indifferent, which might be used or not used, as they saw-it tend to Gods Glory, and the good of the Church; now this is profitable to know, for the understanding of the History of the Acts, where we shall finde Paul, using Circumcision, and yet writeth against it in his Epistles

There are three things observable as to the use of Ceremonies.

1. Before the death of Christ the use of Ceremonies was not indifferent, but necessa­ry, as being commanded of God.

2. After the death of Christ, their use was indifferent for a time: this time was till the doctrine of Christian liberty might be fully made known to the world, which could not be done on a sudden: As Acts of Parliament have a day set downe, when they shall be in force, that so all the subjects of the Land may have time convenient to take knowledge of them; so it is in this case.

3. But now they are not necessary, nor in­different, but absolutely forbidden. After [Page 247] the passion of Christ, Jew [...]sh Ceremonies were mortuae, saith a learned man, that is, dead: But after the divnlgation of the Gospel, they bec [...]me mortiferae, that is, deadly.

Saint A [...]gustine elegantly expresseth this by a similitude; A mans friend dyes; he doeth not so soone as the breath is out of his body, take him by the heeles, and dragge him out of the doores, and cast him upon the dunghill; but he keeps him a cer­taine time, wraps him in fair cloaths, and so with honour accompanies him to the grave: so these Ceremonies were alive till Christ; and because they had been by divine Ordinance, of great use in Gods worship, they remained for a time indifferent, that so they might be laid down in an honourable manner.

And here you may see the difference between Lawes Ceremoniall, and Lawes mo­rall; the one were temporary, the other are universall, [...]nd perpetuall; the one were there­fore good, because they were commanded, the other were commanded, because they were good: Morall Lawes [...]ave an in­ward goodnesse in them, which others have not. When the Apostle would set forth the glory and excellency of the morall [Page 248] Law, he gives these titles to it, that it is holy, and just, and good, which holinesse, justice, Rom. 7.12. and goodnesse he opposeth to his owne wickednesse: I am carnall, saith he, but the Law is holy, and just, and good. Now look as his carnality that was contrary to the Law, was evill in it selfe, so the Law which was contrary to that carnality, was just, holy, and good in it selfe. The Prophet Micah perceiving how forward many were in Ceremoniall duties and sacrifices in oppo­sition hereunto, he tells them, He hath shewed Mic. 6.8. thee, Oh man, what is good (speak­ing of morall duties, as shewing mercy, and walking humbly with God) were not sacrifice, and offerings good, as well as mercy, and walking humbly? Yes, but herein lyes the difference: sacrifice, and burnt-offerings were not in themselves good, but onely as commanded by God, but morall obedience, as shewing mercy and walking humbly is good in it selfe, and therefore said the Prophet, He hath shewed thee, Oh man, what is good.

10. Rule.

Comparisons in Scripture must not be wrested further then the scope of the [Page 249] comparison requires: For instance, Saint James [...]aith, As the body without the Jam. 2.26. spirit is dead, so faith without workes is dead also; The Papists gather from hence, as the soul is the forme of the body, and animates it, so are workes the forme of faith which animate faith; but the comparison is wrest­ed, for the scope of the Apostle is this, as the body is known not to be dead by the operation, and presence of the soul, so faith is known not to be dead by workes.

So the Church is called the piller of truth. The Papists make the comparison 1 Tim. 3. 15. here; as the pillar upholds the house, so the Church upholds truth. But the compari­son is wrested; the Church is the pillar of truth, viz. it holds out truth (we use to hang out things upon pillars) but it doth not hold it up.

11. Rule.

When we read concerning Christ in the Scriptures, we must consider what expressions referce to Christ as he was God, what expressions referre to Christ as he was man, and what referre to his person as he was [...], God-man: This Rule must heedfully be observed, [Page 250] that we may neither confound the natures of Christ with Eutyches, or cry up two persons in Christ with Nestorius.

As we may say concerning a man, that some things are attributed to him which are proper onely to his soul, as he is said to understand, to grieve, to rejoyce, to fear, to hope; some things are attributed to him which are proper onely to his body, as to eat, and drinke, and walk; some things again are attributed unto him which are neither proper to the soul alone or the body alone, but to the Quid compositum, the person consisting of both; for instance, to laugh, to write accurately, to speake judicious­ly.

In like manner, some things are spoken of Christ as he was God; for instance, he is called the Word, the image of the invisible God, the expresse image of his substance. Some things are spoken of Christ, as he was man, as that he was acquainted with griefs, that he was hungry, thuirsty, &c. some things againe are spoken of Christ neither as he was God, nor as he was man distinctly considered, but as he was God-man; for instance, Had they known it, they would not have cruci­fied 1 Cor. 2.8. the Lord of glory. So, Take heed unto your selves, and to all the floock, &c. to feed Act. 20. 28. [Page 251] the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his owne blood.

12. Rule

There are severall promises in the Scriptures, which although as to the rinde and outside of them, they seem to re­late onely to temporals, yet if we look within, we shall finde that they containe spiritualls; Now this must carefully be observed, that we may be established con­cerning the truth of divine promises; Abra­ham was promised a sonne, a blessing tempo­rall; but there was a spirituall blessing annexed (even the greatest that ever the sonnes of men were made partakers of) viz. the Lord Jesus Christ: whom the Scripture calls the sonne of Abraham, that seed in which all the nations of the earth should be blessed: You have another instance also in Samuel, where Nathan says, to David. When thy dayes be fulfilled, and thou shalt 2 Sam. 7. 12, 13, &c. sleepe with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, he shall build an house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his Kingdom for ever.

These words here are spoken of Solomon, [Page 252] and yet something else is intended by the Spirit of God in this Scripture, then can in propriety of speech be attributed unto Solomon. For the power of Solomon was exceedingly weakned before his death, and afterward his son even upon the point cast out of his Kingdom, by the revolting of the ten tribes.

But that which is more then all this, Solo­mons race we may see ended in Jeconiah; Thus saith the Lord, Write ye this man child­lesse, Jerem. 22. 30. a man that shall not prosper in his dayes, for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Juda.

Therefore this promise must be extend­ed further then to Solomon, and his seed; to Christ, even of whom Solomon was a type, whose Kingdome is for everlasting.

But it is said, Jeconias had a son, and af­ter Object. they were brought to Babylon, Jeconias, begat Salathiel, &c. Mat. 1 12.

'Tis true, children are ascribed to Jeconi­ah, Resp. but children by succession, not by generation; and therefore Jeconiah (as I have said) dying without issue, Salathiel in the line of Nathan, Solomons brother, comes in as neerest heire, and is reckoned by Saint Matthew, the sonne of Jeconiah, viz. le­gall. [Page 253] For we must understand, that there was a double descent, usually reckoned among the Jewes, the one legal, the other natural; the natural descent was, when as one by natural generation descended of another; the legal descent was, when one not naturally descended of another, yet succeeded as nearest of kin to the inherit­ance.

This is necessary for us to observe, that we may be convinced of a truth (not ta­ken notice of by most in the world) viz. that our Lord Jesus was not of the line of Solomon naturally; that is, he was not the natural sonne of Solomon, but the natural sonne of David by Nathan, Solomons bro­ther; he was legally Solomons sonne, not naturally.

Hence al [...]o the Evangelists Matthew, and Luke may be reconciled; Saint Luke dedu­ces the natural line of Christ from David, making it known how Christ by Nathan is the natural sonne of David, according to the flesh; but Saint Matthew deduces the legal line of Christ from David, ma­king it known how Christ as Solomons heire and lawfull King of the Jewes succeeded as neerest kinne to sit upon the throne of David his Father, for the which cause al­so [Page 254] Saint Matthew calls him borne King of the Jewes.

13. Rule.

There are many things spoken of in the Scriptures, as done, and past, which in truth are promised, and to come.

For instance, in Esay many things are spoken by the Prophet, as done, and suffer­ed by Christ, which notwithstanding were to be done, and to be suffered: So, Surely he hath born our griefes, and carried our sorrowes: And ver. 5. He was wounded for our Isa. 53.4 transgressions he was bruised for our iniqui­ties: So, ver. 7. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted.

In like manner the Psalmist, For dogs have compassed me; the assembly of the wicked Psal. 22.16 have enclosed me, they pierced my hands, and my feet.

A learned Author, gives us this account of this Rule; In prophetia bene miscentur futura praeteritis quià ea, quae ventura pro­phetantur secundùm tempus futura sunt, se­cundùm scientiam verò prophetantium j [...]m pro factis habentur. Many things prophesied in the Scriptures, if you note strictly the time of their accomplishment, are to come; [Page 255] but the revelation of them to the Prophets of God, were as full of light, and certainty as if they were present.

Another thus: Omnis lingua prophetica loquitur de futuro tanquam de praeterito; & hoc ideò, quià dictum Dei habetur pro facto. The Prophets speak of things to come, as of things past, because Gods word is his act.

14. Rule.

In the perusall of the Scriptures it is safer to follow the commands of God, then the examples of men: This will ap­peare if you consider these particulars.

1. The good actions of wicked men are heedfully to be observed: Jehus zeale for God is worthy of our imitation, provided we act from a right principle, to a right end: Precious stones, some say, may be taken out of poysonous creatures.

2. The evill actions of godly men are carefully to be avoided; the falls of the Saints are spectacles of naturall frailty, not examples for practice: they are written for our caution, not for our imitation. Rocks are set downe in a Map, that the saylors may shun them, and not run their ships against them. Lots wife, saith Au­gustine, [Page 256] was turned into a pill [...]r of salt; ut condiret te suo exemplo, that she might season thee, that thou mightest not do the like.

3. If the fact be approved in tanto, sed non in toto, in some part▪ but not in the whole, it is not to be made an example of Imita­tion.

Zipporah circumcised her child, and so the Angell left off to kill Moses; therefore a midwife may baptize a child. This fol­lowes not; the Angell ceased to trouble Mo­ses, because his sonne was circumcised, and not becau [...]e he was circumcised by a woman,

4. Some actions of the Saints, may be approved of by God, and yet are not to be followed by us: and that in severall Cases: as,

1. What the people of God did by an extraordinary call, or by speciall instinct from God: as when God commands Abra­ham to sacrifice his son, this is no rule for a Fathers laying violent hands on his child, for God hath said, Thou shatlt not kill. The Isra­elites taking away the Egyptians Jewells, is no warrant for cousenage, for this is aworke of the ungodly: The wicked boroweth, and pay­eth Ps 37.21. not againe; the Apostle healing the sick, anoninted them, therefore the Priest now [Page 257] may is a nonsequitur, for that Oyle was mi­raculous: Dispensations extend not beyond the particulars to whom they were given

2. What the primitive Christians did, oc­casioned by speciall necessity of the times or for the avoyding of scandal; the primitive Christians had all things common, they that beleeved were together, and had all things com­mon; Acts 2 44. they knew Jerusalem should be de­stroyed and that they were to suffer great persecutions, and therefore it was prudence rather to sell, their goods, and to dispose of them for the good of that Church of God, then to lose all. So Paul makes his hands minister to his necesityes. There is no footing here for Anabaptisticall community, nor necessity laid on Ministors, to worke with their hands, except the times, and the case were alike.

15. Rule.

When the Spirit of God is pleased to make use of [...]militude in the Scri­pture, it is only required that they agree unto those things unto which they relate, in that which they are brought to prove.

In every similitude, there is some simili­tude. Analoga sunt [...], non [...], they [Page 258] are alike, but they are not the same.

For instance, you read of the similitude Mat. [...]0. of the Labourers in the vineyard; and how the Lord of the vineyard makes no differ­ence, in regard of his payment, between those that came into his vineyard at the third and sixth houres, and those that came in at the ninth and eleventh hours: But they received every man a penny: And ver. 10.11. vers. 11. When they had received it, they murmured against the good man of the house: Now who knowes not, when the people of God come to heaven to receive their pen­ny there shall be no murmuring? It is suffici­ent you finde in this Parable, that for which it was intended, viz. to prove the rich and free grace of God toward sinners.

So in the Proverbes, 'tis said, As a Prover. 11. 32. Jewell of Gold in a swines snout, so is a fair woman without discretion: Certainly there is a vast difference between a swine and be­tween a woman, between a Jewell of Gold in a swines snout, and the beauty of a foolish woman▪ Yet the similitude is apt enough for that, for which it was urged: viz. as a Jewell in a swines snout is rather hurtfull, then profitable, so is beauty to a foolish wo­man.

In the Canticles, it is said of Christ, that Can. 5. [...]3. [Page 259] his lips were like lillies now if the compari­son be not marked rightly here, we may be deceived: for to make Christs lips as white as a lilly, were impertinent; therefore the comparison is in odore, non in colore, in regard of the smell, not of the colour.

16. Rule.

In Scripture sometimes a number certain, is put for a number uncertain: numerus finitus ubi intelligi debet infini­tus and e contr [...]; sometimes a number uncertain, is put for a number certain, numerus infinitus ubi intelligi debet numerus fini­tus: for instance,

1. A number certaine, is put for a number uncertain, Prov. 24.16. A just man falleth se­ven times a day, viz. many times So. Psa. 24.16. Psal. 119. 164. David, Psal. 119. 164. seven times a day do I praise thee, viz. crebrô, ofttimes do I Esay. 4.1. praise thee. So the Prophet Esay, In that day seven women shall lay hold of one man, viz. many women, and some times you have more numbers then one in a Scripture when you have this very thing intended by the Spirit of God. For instance, Psal. 91.7. A Psal. 91 7. thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thou­sand at thy right hand, but it shall not come nigh thee. A thousand, and ten thousand, viz. [Page 260] very many. So, Mat. 18.21, 22. Peter came to Christ, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother Mat. 18.21. sinne against me, and I forgive him; till seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, till seven times, but untill seven­ty times seven, viz. as oft as thy brother sinnes, against thee.

2. A number uncertaine is put for a num­ber certaine. So the Lord speaking of the Passeover, You shall keep it a feast to the Lord, throughout your generations, you shall keepe Ex. 12.14. it a feast by an Ordinance for ever, viz. as long as these Ceremoniall rites are in force. So it is said of Hannah, that she said unto her husband, I will not go up untill the 1 Sam. 1. 22. child be weaned, and then I will bring him, that he may appeare before the Lord, and there abide for ever: And yet we shall finde, Numb. 8. 24.25. that the Levites were to wait upon the ser­vice of the Tabernacle of the congregati­on, but from twenty five yeares old, to Deut. 25. 15, 16, 17. the age of fifty, So in Deuteronomy; If thy servant shall say unto thee, I will not go away from thee, because he loveth thee, and thy house, because he is well with thee, then thou shalt take an Aule and thrust through his eare unto the doore, and he shall be thy servant for ever, viz: as long as he lives.

17. Rule.

In computation of times the Spirit of God frequently speakes by a synecdo­che of the whole for the part, or the part for the whole. For instance,

When Matthew speakes of the transfi­guration Mat. 17.1, 2. he speakes of six dayes; After six dayes Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountaine apart, and was transfigured be­fore them; But now, Saint Luke speakes of eight dayes; And it came to passe, about eight dayes after these sayings, he tooke Peter, Luc. 9.28. and James, and John, and went up into a mountaine to pray, &c. For the reconciling of these places, we must know, that Saint Luke speakes of part of the first, and the last dayes, as two dayes, and so he reckons upon eight dayes; Saint Matthew omits them, being but part of two dayes, and so reckons but upon six: So we say, Christ was raised the third day after his crucifixi­on, whereas he lay but one whole day in the grave; but per synecdochen part of friday and part of the Lords day are reckoned for two dayes.

18. Rule.

There are some propositions unto which a note of universality is affixed, and yet ought not to be accounted alto­gether universall. So Adam called his wives name Eve, because she was the mo­ther of all living, viz. viventis hominis, Gen. 3.20. non bruti, of every living man, not of eve­ry living creature. So the Lord Jesus, If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all Joh. 12.32. men unto me, viz. all beleevers unto me. So, All seeke their owne, not the things which are Jesus Christs; all, viz. many. So, I Phil. 2.21. will poure out my Spirit on all flesh, which Joel 2.28. is spoken of beleevers, as appeares, Act. 2. 17.

Now this ought to be heedfully obser­ved; that notes of universality in Scripture, whether affirmative, or negative, ought to be restrained, or limitted to that subject matter, of which the Spirit of God speakes in the context.

For instance, [...]au [...] spake not any thing that day, viz. concerning David that day: 1 Sam. 20. 26. For certainly the King spake concerning other things. So in John, But ye have an unction from the Holy one, and ye know all 1 John 2. 26. [Page 263] things, viz. all points necessary to salva­tion, of which Saint John formerly treat­ed. So Paul, Who gave himselfe a ran­some 1 Tim. 2. 6. for all, viz. Some of all sorts, quaties, and conditions; and this appeares by the context. For in the first and second verses Paul speakes of Kings, and all that are in authority: and vers. 7. he speakes of the Gentiles; I am ordained (saith Paul) a Preacher, and an Apostle, a teacher of the verse 7. Gentiles in faith, and in verity. So then the meaning is, Christ gave himselfe a ransome for all, viz. Kings as well as subjects, Gen­tiles as well as Jewes.

19. Rule.

In Scripture the species is not rarely Lev i9.36. put for the genus: For instance, A just Ephah, and a just Hin shall ye have: Where you have one certaine kinde of measure, put for every measure.

So againe, Whosoever he be of the chil­dren Lev. 20.2. of Israel, or of the strangers that so­journe in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Moloch, he shall▪ surely be put to death; unto Moloch, viz. unto that, or any o­ther kinde of Idol.

20. Rule.

Many things are spoken in Scriputre, rather ex vulgi opinione, according to the common opinion of men, then as the things are in themselves considered.

For instance, it is said, And God made Gen. 1.16 two great lights, the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night; meaning the Sun; and the Moone, where­as the Moone is the least of all the planets; onely thought to be one of the greatest by most people. So, the Virgin Mary says unto Jesus, Son, why hast thou dealt thus Luc. 2.48. with us? thy Father and I have sought thee sorrowing: thy Father, viz. thy supposed Father, as he is elsewhere called. So Christ calls Judas friend; for he was so accounted, though indeed he was but a face-friend, and an heart-enemy. So the Pharisees are stiled by the Holy Ghost, righteous, just persons, such as need no repentance, because they were so in the conceit of the world.

21. Rule.

Proph [...]sies in Scripture are shaped in­to severall formes.

[Page 265] 1. Some Prophecies are delivered formâ optandi, by way of wish, or desire, Gen. 49. 18. I have waited for thy salvation, Oh Lord. Quo ipso non optat solùm, sed prophetat: He doth not onely wish that his salvation might come, but prophecies that his sal­vation should come. So the Psalmist, Psal. 14.7. Oh that the salvation of Israel were come out of Sion: when the Lord bringeth back the captivity of his people, Jacob shall rejoyce, and Israell shall be glad.

2. Some Prophecies are delivered formâ imperandi, by way of command. So, Come Esay. 47.1. downe, and sit in the dust, Oh virgin daughter of Babylon, sit on the ground: there is no throne, Oh daughter of the Caldeans, for thou shalt no more be called tender and deli­cate. So, ver. 5. Sit thou silent, and get thee vers. 5 into darknesse, Oh daughter of the Caldeans; for thou shalt no more be called the Lady of Kingdomes.

3. Some Prophecies are delivered formà imprecandi, by way of imprecation; so the Ps [...]lmist, Poure out thy wrath upon the Hea­then, Psal. 79, 6. that have not known thee, and upon the Kingdomes that have not called upon thy vers. 12. Name. So, vers. 12. Render unto our neigh­bours seven-fold into their bosome, the reproch wherewith they have reproached thee, Oh Lord.

22. Rule.

In reading of the Evangelists, we should take notice, what things are speci­fied by one Evangelist, what by two, what by three, and what by all the foure: For instance.

Some of Christs workes are specified onely by one Evangelist, as his turning of water into wine, as his healing the sick man at the poole of Bethesda, his healing that blind man, John 9.

Some of them are specified by two E­vangelists, as the History of Christs birth by Matthew and Luke.

Some things are recorded by three of them, as the institution of the Sacrament of the Supper.

Some things by all foure, as Christs death and passion.

Onely two write the History of his birth, all foure the History of his death, pos­sibly to teach us, that though all Christs workes, and actions are to be seriously minded, meditated upon, and remembred, yet none so espcially as his death and suf­ferings.

23. Rule.

Although we should finde the holy Penmen of God, differ from each other in things of a lesser import, or considera­tion, we should not from hence in the least scruple the divine authority of the Scrip­ture.

For instance, in the History of Christs temptations, Matthew for the second temp­tation, Mat. 4 5. puts the devills taking Christ up into the holy City, and setting him one a pina­cle of the temple; now the Evangelist Saint Luke seemes to invert the order, and for the second temptation puts the devills ta­king Luc. 4.5. Christ into an high mountaine, and shew­ing him all the Kingdomes of the world in a moment of time.

Now if the question be, how these Evan­gelists must be reconciled? Answer may be made, if there be an harmony, as to the temptations that are written by the Evan­gelists, it is enough, though they differ as to the order of the temptations. We do not use to accuse a man of a falshood, who tells us many things that be true, though they be something out of order, unlesse he promise that he will not onely tell us the [Page 268] things that were done, but also the order of the doing of them. So then if Matthew speaks of that temptation in the second place, which Luke doth in the third place as long as they differ not about the maine, as to the temptations concerning which they write, there is an harmony still between Matthew and Luke.

Yea, some think, that this is a good ar­gument to prove the divine authority of the Scriptures, viz. that the Holy Penmen did not lay their heads together, about the framing of the Gospels, nor did tran­scribe one anothers coppies; they agreeing in the maine, and yet differing in things of a lesser consideration.

24. Rule.

When the Evangelists urge a Scrip­ture out of the Old Testament, many times they referre not to the words in themselves considered, but to the scope and aime of the Spirit of God in that place to which they relate.

For instance, He came, and dwelt in a city cal­led Nazareth, that it might be fulfilled which Mat. 2.23 was spoken by the Prophets, He shall be called a Nazaren; which saying cannot be found [Page 269] in terminis in any of the Prophets and there­fore the Evangelist referres to those Scrip­tures, were the Spirit of God speaks to the same purpose, though he makes not use of the same words. So Saint Luke Now that the dead are raised even Moses Luke 20. 37, 38. sheweth at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob: for he is not a God of the dead but of the living. Moses shewed not that, the dead are raised in terminis, but indeed this is inferred from what he said by consequence; for he calleth the Lord, the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; and he is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

And from hence let us be established in this truth, that necessary consequences from Scripture do proove a jus divinum, a divine right; yea, our Lord Jesus calleth conse­quence from Scripture, Scripture; He Joh. 7.38. that believeth on me, as the Scripture saith, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living wa­ter: Now these words strictly taken, are not to be found in the whole booke of God, excepting this place where they are urged; the place of Scripture neerest to this, that I know of, is in Esay, I will poure water up­on him that is thirsty, and floods upon the Isa. 44. 3. [Page 270] dry ground: And indeed if this should be denied, we should fall into grosse ab surdi­ties.

A Learned Author observes, that all kinds of unlawfull, and forbidden marri­ages are not expressely mentioned in the Law, but divers of them to be collected by consequence; that is, either by parity, or greater strength of reason. For instance, The nakednesse of thy sonnes daughter, or of Lev. 18. [...]0 thy daughters daughter, even their naked­nesse thou shalt not uncover. Now from this text, it is collected à fortiori, that much lesse a man may uncover the nakednesse of his owne daughter. Which yet is not ex­pressely forbidden by the Law, but left to be thus collected by necessary consequence from this very text.

How can it be proved, that women are to receive the Sacrament of the Lords Supper, but by consequence? That any one particular Church is a true Church but by consequence? that fasting daies, and thanksgiving-daies, may be observed upon occasion but by consequence?

And here you have the great vapour of the Anabaptists spending it selfe, and com­ing to nothing, viz. where do you finde it expressely said in any place of Scripture, [Page 271] that infants are to be baptized? if we have it by necessary consequence, it is sufficient.

25. Rule.

It is usuall for the Spirit of God, to expresse both the duties and the privi­ledges of the people of God, under the New Testament, by phrases taken from the Oeconomy and Administration of the Old. To instance.

1. For the duties of the New Testament, to offer sacrifice is a phrase proper to the administration under the Old Testament, and yet this is pressed as a dutie under the New. So Paul, I beseech you therefore, bre­thren Rom. i2. i. by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service.

2. For the priviledges of the New Testa­ment, for instance; It shall come to passe Esay. 2.21 in the last dayes, that the mountaine of the Lords house shall be established in the top of the mountaines, and shall be exalted above the hils, and al Nations shall flow unto it. The meaning is not, that there should be ano­ther temple raised, like that at Jerusalem, but it is to be expounded of the spreading of the Gospel. New Testament-priviledges set [Page 272] out by an expression taken from an Old Testament-administration. So, I will poure Joel. 2.28. 29. out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sonnes and your daughters shall prophesy▪ your old men shall dreame dreames, your young men shall see visions: The meaning of this Scripture is not, that God in the time of the Gospel would discover himselfe unto his people by dreames, and visions; but that God would give a greater measure of light, and bestow a greater measure of his Spirit on those that should live under the Gospel, then those that lived under the Law, and that this is the meaning of it, is cleare by the Apostle Peters quota­tion of it, Acts 2.17.

26. Rule.

When the Scripture makes mention of [...]lthy actions, either naturall or sin­ [...]ull, it expresses them in comley termes

1. When it speakes of naturall actions, as, Judg. 3.24. 'tis said of Ehud, that he covered his feet in the Summer-chamber, Judg. 3.24. viz. he was easing of nature, for they had long coates which covered their feet when they eased nature.

2. When it speakes of sinful uncleannesse; [Page 273] So stollen waters are sweet, viz. adultery is sweet. So see how incest is described, saith Jacob to Reuben, Thou wentest up to thy Gen. 49.4 [...]. fathers bed.

And yet this is very observable, that the Scripture when it speakes of Idolatry, and spirituall whoredome, maketh use of plain termes: marke how the phrase is altered, when God speakes of Idolatry, Thou hast Ezek. 16. 2 [...]. built thy high place at every head of the way, and hast made thy beauty to be abhorred, and hast opened thy feet to every one that passeth by, and multiplied thy whoredomes: A Learned Author gives this account of it, Idolatry is such a subtill thing that we are not sensible of its defilement, as we are of bodily whoredome, and therefore the Lord expresses it in plain termes, that we may hate it the more.

27. Rule.

The circumstance of time with rela­tion to the person, or thing that is spo­ken of in the Scripture, must heedfully be observed.

Hence was that saying of Augustine, Distribue tempora, & concordabit Scriptura: Distinguish concerning the time, and then [Page 274] Scriptures will agree. For instance, we read concerning Jotham the Son of V [...]iah, 2 King. 15 33 that he reigned sixteene yeares in Jerusalem, and yet in the same Chapter, mention is made of the twentieth yeare of Jotham: now distribue tempora, & concordabit Scri­ptura: 2 King. 15. 30 distinguish concerning the time, and you will reconcile these Scriptures. For Jotham reigned alone onely sixteene yeares, but he reigned with his Father V [...] ­ [...]iah (who being smitten with Leprosy could not manage the affaires of the Kingdome) foure yeares; in all twenty yeares.

28. Rule.

We are to consider in the perusall of Scripture what speeches are proper and what speeches are figurative. The Scriptures have a proper, and literall sense, and they have an allegoricall and figurative sense. Now it is a dangerous thing, when the words are properly to be taken, to un­derstand them figuratively, or to take them figuratively, when they are to be under­stood properly. For instance,

1. 'Tis dangerous to understand those places of Scripture properly, which are to be taken figuratively, as in the Prophet [Page 275] Malachi; Behold, I will send you Elijah the Prophet before the coming of the great, and Mal. 4.5. dreadfull day of the Lord. The Jewes ex­pound this properly of Elias Tishbites, when the Prophet meant them figuratively of John the Baptist, who came with the gifts of Elias; for so you have John called, But I say unto you ( [...]aith our Saviour unto his disciples) that Elias is come already, and Mat. 17. 12, 13. they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed, &c. Then the Dis­ciples understood, that he spake unto them of John the Baptist. Another instance you have, Beware of the Leaven of the Pharisees: Mat. 16.6. The Disciples understood it properly, when Christ meant figuratively. So, Except a man be borne againe, he cannot enter into Joh. 3.3. the Kingdome of God. That which Christ meant figuratively of regeneration, Nicode­mus understands literally.

2. 'Tis dangerous to understand those places figuratively which should be taken properly; thus the Familists turne all the history of Christ into an Allegory, Heaven and Hell into an allegory, and without repentance their salvation also: Such an one was he, who reading that place of Scripture, where it is said of Judas, that having received the sop, he went immedi­ately [Page 276] out, & erat nox, and it was night, puts both together as spoken of Judas; He, saith he, was the night, that went out; as Christ was the Sun, that gave know­ledge to his Disciples, who were day: So Judas was the night, who gave know­ledge to the Jewes, who were darknesse. A senselesse conceit, but I mention it to shew you the danger of allegorizing the Scriptures.

Origen was very faulty this way, in turning all Scripture almost into an alle­gory. And it is observable, that he who was so much for allegories, understood that literally, which was to be taken mystically: There are some Eunuchs, which were so borne Mat. 19.12. from their mothers wombe; and there are Eunuchs which were made so of men; and there be Eunuchs, which have made them­selves Eunuchs for the Kingdome of heavens sake.

And truly I think, there was the finger of God plainly to be seene in this provi­dence: his punishment was like his sin: As the taking of literall Scriptures in a figurative sense was his sin, so the taking of a figurative in a literall, was his punish­ment.

But you may aske me, when the Quest. [Page 277] litterall sense is to be left?

When it is repugnant to the analogy of Resp. faith, or that systeeme of Divinity, which is evidently grounded upon the Word of God. For instance; when it is said, Every branch in me, that beareth not frait: we Joh. 15.2. must not interpret the branches that beare not fruit, to be really in Christ, as parts of his mysticall body, because this is a­gainst the Analogy of faith: we know that no branch, which is truely engraffed into Christ can ever be taken away; and therefore we must understand the phrase of such as are in Christ visibl [...] as mem­bers not of his true body, but of his visible Church.

The Inchanters Rods are related to be turned into Serpents; now they must be interpreted to seeme so, rather then to be so, because the literall interpretation is against the analogy of faith; the changing of the natures of creatures, being beyond the sphere of the activity of the devils pow­er.

So when we are commanded to pluck out our right eye, and cut off our right hand, if they offend us; this cannot be expounded literally, because it is against the analogy, of faith, God hath expressely commanded Thou shalt not kill.

29. Rule.

Although the proffer of salvation in the Scripture be conditionall, yet is neither the decree of God, nor the pur­chase of Christ relating thereunto condi­tionall.

The Lord Jesus did not redeeme us, if we did beleeve, but that we might beleeve; there is a condition in the things proffered, but none in the will of God, Gods offer­ing salvation upon condition of beleeving, doth onely note that faith is a meanes tending thereunto: In like manner, Gods promises are not (for the forme of them) to be compared with his purposes or inten­tions: that which is performed upon a condition, is not intended upon a condi­tion so to be performed. God absolutely intended to make his elect to beleeve, and to save them; their beliefe is but a con­dition to their salvation, not to Gods inten­tion which is absolute.

For the further clearing of this, consider that the voluntas signi may be conditionall, and the voluntas beneplaciti may be absolute, and yet there may be a sweet Harmony between them. To this purpose observe, [Page 279] that a conditionall proposition having such a condition annexed to it, as will certainly and infallibly be effected, is equivalent to an absolute affirmative catego­ricall proposition; As if a man sayes, he will take a journey to morrow if he be a­ble, and knowes certainly he shall be a­ble, this is eq [...]ivalent to an absolute affirma­tive categoricall proposition, that he will absolutely go: So on the contrary, if a proposition be conditionall, and hath a condition annexed to it, which is impos­sible and shall never be effected, this is equivalent to an absolute categoricall nega­tive proposition; when Reprob [...]tes are told, if they beleeve they shall be saved, it is equivalent to this proposition, they shall not be saved, because they shall not beleeve. So that the outward tender, though conditionall, may answer to an absolute decree, the render it selfe being equivalently absolute.

30. Rule.

The Scripture sometimes speakes of a thing, as absolutely, and infallibly coming to passe by vertue of Gods or­dination, and yet the same thing may [Page 280] be in its owne nature contingent.

For instance, it was prophesied concern­ing Christ, that not a bone of him should be broken▪ now Christs legs were not broken; not because in themselves con­sidered they could not be broken, but be­cause Gods decree could not be broken: they were capable of being broken, and ye [...] not capable: capable in respect of themselves, incapable in regard of Gods decree.

When there is a non-essentiall connexion between things, we say there is con­tingency: when there is an essentiall connexi­on, there we say there is necessity: For in­stance, [...]ationality and risibility are necessary to a man, because a man cannot be a man but he must have a power both to reason, and laugh; they do ingredi essentiam: but that a man doth exercise his reason or not exercise it, that a man doth laugh or not laugh, is contingent; the power is necessary, but the act is contingent: Christs legs in re­spect of themselves, were as apt to be bro­ken as the malefactours, therefore the not breaking of them was contingent, as to the souldiers, though coming to passe necessa­rily as to Gods decree. Contingent things are nothing the lesse contingent for [Page 281] some kinde of extrinsecal necessity.

31. Rule.

Negations in Scripture must be read with these cautions.

1. Sometimes they deny not simply, but onely in comparison; I will have mercy, Mat. 9.13. and not sacrifice, that is, I will have mercy rather then sacrifice. So, When thou ma­kest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, Luk. 14.12. 13. nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours, &c. But when thou makest a feast, call the poore, the maimed, the lame, the blind: Bid not your brethren, but the poore, that is, the poore rather then your brethren,

2. Sometimes negatives deny onely ac­cording to the conceit, and opinion of the hearers; So, God is not the God of the dead, but of the living: He is not the God Ma. 22.32. of the dead, that is, of such dead, whom the Sadduces thought dead, who should never rise againe; for Christ spake this to the Sadduces, who denyed the resurrection, as appeares by the context. So Jesus said, Joh. 7.16. My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me: Is not mine, that is, as you take me to be a meere man.

32. Rule.

The truth of an Hypotheticall Propo­sition, doth not depend upon the truth of the two Propositions, the Antecedent and the consequent; but upon the neces­sary connexion: viz. The Antecedent and consequent of an Hypotheticall Proposi­tion may be true, and yet the Proposition, may be false it selfe, and è contrà, the An­tecedent and consequent of an Hypotheticall Proposition, may be false, and yet the Proposition may be true it selfe. For in­stance,

If Isaac were Abrahams Son, then he were truly good; both parts considered apart are true, yet the Proposition it selfe is false, because there is no necessary con­nexion between the Antecedent, and the Consequent: If a man be irrational, he is a beast, both parts are false, yet the Proposi­tion true: Paul sayes to the Centurion, and to the Souldiers, Except these abide in the Ship, ye cannot be saved; both parts are false, Act. 27.31 either that the Ship-men should not abide in the Ship, or that any man in the Ship should not be saved: God having before determined, that there should be no losse [Page 283] of any mans life among them; so saith Paul, I exhort you to be of good chear, for there shall be no losse of any mans life among you, but of the Ver. 22 Ship: yet the connexion is true, except they did abide in the ship they could not be saved: If I say to a Reprobate, If thou beleeve thou shalt be saved, this Proposition is true; though that the Reprobate shall either beleeve, or be saved, is false.

33. Rule.

To say this or that opinion is untrue, because it doth in [...]erminis contradict some place of Scripture, will not hold. For in­stance,

To say that Christ is not equall with the Father, is expressely contrary to that Scripture, He thought it no robbery to be equal with God; yet agreeable enough to that of Christ himselfe, My Father is greater then [...]: To say God cannot repent, is in terminis to contradict some places of Scri­pture: To say, God can repent, is in terminis to contradict other places of Scripture; yet neither of these are unsound, because in terminis onely to contradict the Scri­pture, is not to contradict indeed the Scripture; but when we contradict the [Page 284] meaning of the Scripture, then, and not till then, we are justly said to contradict the Scripture. For instance,

To deny Gods delight in the destruction of sinners, is to contradict in terminis that place of Scripture, I will laugh at your ca­lamity: and to say, God doth delight in the Prov. [...].26. destruction of sinners, doth in terminis con­tradict another place of Scripture, As I live, saith the Lord, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked. And yet never a whit Ezek. 33.1. the more contradiction found in the Scri­pture for all this.

As for example, it is both true, that the Father is greater then the Son, as touching the Sonnes manhood, and the Son equall to the Father, as touching the Sonnes God-head. So of repentance it cannot be at­tributed unto God as it signifies a change of minde, or counsell, but it may be at­tributed unto God, as it signifies change of sentence, according to that Axiome, Deus mutat sententiam, nunquam consilium. So, as touching Gods pleasure, or delight in the death of a sinner, as it is the destruction of a creature, he delights not in it; but as it is the just punishment of a sinfull creature he delights therein: God delights in the execution of justice, as appeares in Jere­miah; [Page 85] But let him that glorieth, glory in Jer. 9.24. this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord, which exercise loving kindnesse, judgement and righteousnesse on the earth; for in these things I delight, saith the Lord: God delights in the exercise of judgement and righteousnesse, as well as in the exercise of loving kindness.

In like manner we say, that two Propo­sitions may contradict each other in termi­nis, and yet may agree well enough, as to the sense and meaning of them. For in­stance, These two Propositions, 1. Adam might not have sinned. 2. It could not be but that Adam would sinne, are both true; That Adam might not have sinned, is true of Adam in the sense of division, considered as in himself: It could not be but that Adam would sinne, is true of Adam in the sense of composition, being considered as subordi­nate to the decrees of God.

24. Rule.

Pray unto God for the illumination of the Spirit.

Luther used to say, Bene or are, est bene stu­duisse; he will study well, that can pray well. It is a singular comfort and priviledge [Page 286] to every godly man, to see with his owne eyes: It is a great comfort to a blinde man, to meet with a faithful guide, whom he may trust to lead him in his way; but it comes nothing neer to the content, which a man that hath eyes takes, when with them he sees the way on which he walks.

35. Rule.

Labour for true holinesse.

The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him Saint Iohn tels us, That the anoy [...]t­ing 1 Joh. 2.27 which the people of God have received, and have abiding in them, shall teach them all things. God will not reveal his will to those that will do their own. So Paul, Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind; Rom. 12.2 that ye [...]ay prove, what is that good, and ac­ceptable, and perfect will of God.

36. Rule.

Get an humble heart.

With the lowly is wisdome. God will break Prov. 11.2 his minde to the broaken in heart: Who am I saith Moses? and yet who [...]itter then he to go unto Pharaoh? He that refused to be called Pharaohs daughters sonne, was afterwards [Page 287] called to be Pharaohs God. See, (faith the Lord to Moses) I have made thee a God to Exod. 7.1 Pharaoh.

How shall that Christian be satisfied, Quest. who notwithstanding the heedful obser­ving of these, or such like Rules, is in the dark, as to many texts in the book of God?

These things may be said for the satisfa­ction Resp: of such a Christian.

1. That it is not necessary that a Christi­an should understand every Text in the Scriptures: if he understands so much as is absolutely necessary to his salvation, he is a good Scholar in Christs schoole.

2. As often as thou meetest with any thing that is above the reach of thy capaci­ty, be humbled in the sense of thine owne weaknesse. Thou art so farre carnal, as thou doest not perceive the things of God, which are spiritually to be discerned.

3. Pray unto that God, who hath the Key of David, that he would open thy un­derstanding, that thou mayest rightly con­ceive of the great mysteries of Religion: Christ hath told us, if we knock, he will open unto us; he hath commanded us to knock, that we may not be slothful; he hath pro­mised to open, that we may not be distrust­full.

[Page 288] 4. The complete knowledge of Divine Mysteries is reserved for our heavenly state: whilest we are in this world, we know but in part. Yea, Irenaeus addes, saith he, In glory to all eternity, the Saints shall be learning something of God, that so God to eternity may be a Teacher, and the Saint a learner. There is such another like expres­sion, that the Schools make use of, when they speak of our state in glory; they say. The Angels and glorified Saints, are full ves­sels, and yet are alwayes a filling.


Books Printed, and are now to be sold by Nathanael W [...]bb and William Grantham, at the black Bear in St. Pauls Church-yard neer the little North-door of Pauls Church.

  • MAster Isaac Ambrose, Prima, Media, & Ʋltima, first, middle, and last things, in three Treatises of Regeneration, Sanctificati­on; with Meditations on Life, Death, Hell, and Judgement, in 4.
  • Mr. Nathanael Hardy, severall Sermons Preached upon Solemne occasions; collected into one Volume, in 4.
  • History Sorvey'd in a briefe Epitomy, or, a Nursery for gentry, comprised in an intermixt discourse, upon Historicall and Poe [...]icall Relations, in 4.
  • Dr. Stoughton's 13 Sermons, being an Intro­duction to the Body of Divinity▪ in 4.
  • Dr. John Preston, The Golden Scepter, with the Churches Marriage, and the Chur [...]hes Car­riage, in three Treatises, in 4.
  • Mr. Walter Cradock, Gospell-Liberty, in the extension and limitation of it, in 4.
  • Mr. Thomas Parker, The Visions and Pro­phecies of Dan [...]el Expounded, wherein the mi­stakes of former Interpreters are modestly dis­covered, in 4.
  • Reformatio Legum Ecclesiasticarum ex Au­thoritate primùm Regis Henrici [...] inchoata; in [...].
  • [Page] Mr. George Strode, The Anatomy of Morta­lity divided into eight Heads, viz. 1. The cer­tainty of Death. 2. Meditations on Death. 3. Preparations for Death, &c. in 4.
  • Dr. Daniel Featly, The Grand Sacriledge of the Church of Rome, in taking away the Sacred Cup from the Laity, at the Lords Table, in 4.
  • Mr. Richard Lewthait, Vindiciae Christi & obex errori Arminiano; A Plea for Christ, in three Sermons, in 4.
  • Welch Common Prayer, with the singing Psalmes, in 4.
  • Mr. John Lawsons Gleanings and Expositions of some of the more difficult places of holy Scri­pture, in 4.
  • Mr. John Cotton, The way of the Churches of Christ in New England, in 4.
  • Mr. Edward Thorp, The New Birth, or, Birth from above, in 4 Sermons, in 4.
  • Mr. John Vicars, The Schismatick sifted, &c. in 4.
  • —Colemanstreet Conclave visited, and that Grand Impostor, the Schismaticks Cheater in chiefe, truly and duly discovered, in 4.
  • Roberti Heggi, Dunelmensis in Aliquot Sacra Paginae Loca Lectiones, in 4.
  • Mr. John Lewes, Contemplations upon these times, or the Parliament explain'd to Wales, in 4.
  • Dr. John Preston, A Position delivered in Cambridge, concerning the irresistiblenesse of con­verting Grace, in 4.
  • The Beacon Fl [...]ming, with a non obstante a­gainst [Page] those that plead for Liberty of Printing and Publishing Popish Books, in 4.
  • The Ranters Reasons Resolved to nothing, or the fustification instead of the Justification of the Mad Crew, &c. in 4.
  • Mr. Nathanael Stevens, A Prec [...]pt for the Baptisme of Infants out of che New Testament, in 4.
  • Mr Josiah Ricraft, A Nosegay of rank smel­ling flowers such as grow in Mr John Goodwins Garden, &c. in 4.
Sermons in 4▪
  • Dr. Robert Gell. A Sermon touching Gods Government of the World by Angels, Preach'd before the Astrologers, the 8 of August, 1650. in 4.
  • Dr. John Whincop, Gods call to Weeping, and Mourning, A Sermon Preached at a Fast before the Parliament, 29 of Jan. 1644. in 4.
  • Mr. George Walker, A Sermon Preached at a Fast before the Parliament, 29 Jan. 1644. in 4.
  • Mr. Valentine. A Sermon Preached at a Fast before the Parliament, in 4.
  • Mr John Warren of Hatfield-Regis in Es­sex. The Potent Potter, A Sermon Preached at a Fast before the Parliament, the 19 of April. 1649. in 4.
  • Mr. William Good. Jacob Raised, A Sermon Preached at a Fast before the Lords in Parlia­ment, [Page] 30 of December, 1646, in 4.
  • Dr. Thomas Goodwin, The great Interest of States and Kingdomes, A Sermon Preached before the Parliament 15 of Feb. 1645, in [...].
  • Mr. Samuel Kem, The King of Kings his pri­vy markes for the Kingdomes choyce o [...] new Mem­bers, A Sermon Preached upon the Choice of Burgesses, for the City of Bristoll, in 4.
  • Mr. Ben. Hubbard. Sermo Secularis, or a Sermon to bring to remembrance the dealings of Jehovah with this Kingdome of England, ab anno 1547, usque ad annum 1647, in 4.
  • Mr. [...]. P. A Sermon [...]reached the 5 of Sep­tember, upon Mat. 22.21. Wherein is set forth the Kings due in Part, and the peoples duty, in 4.
  • Mr. Robert Young, A Soveraigne Antidote against all griefe, with the victory of Patience, in 8.
  • Mr. John Simpson, The Perfection of Justifi­cation against the Pharisees, the Purity of San­ctification aga [...]nst the stainers of it, the unquesti­onablenesse of glorification against the Sadduces, &c. in 8.
  • Bishop William Cooper, The Triumph of a Christian, in three excellent Treatises. 1. Ja­cobs wrestling with God, &c. in 8.
  • Mr John Robotham, the Preciousnesse of Christ to Believers, &c. in 8.
  • The Bee-Hive of the Romish Church, A worke of all good Catholic [...]s to be read, and most necessa­ry to be understood, in 8.
  • Testament Roman Letter, Scotch Print, in 8.
  • Mr Thomas Hall, The loathsomenesse of Long Haire: A Treatise wherein the Question is Sta­ted, [Page] many Arguments against it produced, &c. in 8.
  • —Vindiciae Literarum, the Schools Guarded, or the excellency and usefulness of Arts, Sciences, Languages, History and all sorts of Humane Learning, in Subordination to Divinity, with an Appendix in Answer to Mr Webster.
  • Mr. John Warren of Hatfield in Essex, Principles of Christian Doctrine Illustrated with Questions and Scripture-Answers, for the use of the Inhabitants of Hatfield Brodoake, in 8.
  • Mr. Nicholas Byfield, The Marrow of the Oracles of God: Or, Divers Treatises containing directions, about 6 of the weightiest things can concerne a Christian in this life, in 12.
  • Mr. John Jackson, The true Evangelic all Tem­per, wherein Divinity and Ecclesiasticall History are interwoven and mixt, &c. in three Sermons, in 12.
  • Mr. Joshua Mullard, Celestiall Soliloquies, Composed of severall divine Meditations and Pray­ers drawne from the Holy Scriptures, in 12.
  • Francis Thin Esqu [...]re, the Perfect Ambassador, Treating of the Antiquity, Priviledges and beha­viour of men, belonging to that function, in 12.
  • A Baptismal catechisme shewing unto what persons, whe­ther of riper years, or as yet infants, the Sacrament of Baptism ought to be administred according to the Scripture by Mr. Da­niel Evance▪ sometime preacher of the Word at Clement Danes London; and late Pastor of the Church of Calborne in the Isle of Wight.
  • The first dish at the wilt shire Feast, a Sermon Preacht the 9 of Novemb. before many hundreds of worthy Citizens of London born in that Countrey. By Dr. Samuel Annesley Preacher of the Word at John Evangelists, Friday-street, London.

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