SUTABLE COMFORTS FOR Suffering Sion; OR, SAINTS INTEREST in GOD, their Chiefest SUPPORT in times of greatest Straits. BEING A Brief DISCOVERY of what GOD is to his People in all Ages: Which is of great Weight and Use to His in these Trying Times. Written by EDWARD DELAMAINE, at present under Restraint, and a PRISONER of HOPE.

ISAIAH 40.1, 2.

Comfort ye, Comfort ye my People, saith your God; Speak comfor­tably to them.

LONDON, Printed by Simon Dover, and are to be Sold at his House in Christophers Alley, in Martins Le Grand. 1661.

SUTABLE COMFORTS FOR Suffering Sion; OR, SAINTS INTEREST in GOD their Chiefest Support in times of greatest Straits.

DEar Brethren, and fellow Companions of the Kingdom of God; This is the day of Jacobs Trouble, of Josephs Affliction, of Zions Trials, and of the Calamities of the whole Israel of God; And I find that the People of God in general, are very prone and incident to be Troubled, Cast down, and Disquieted; And I find that it is the De­sign of God that his People should be Comforted, Consolated, and Refreshed. Therefore in order thereunto, I shall offer something, that may answer the End and Design of God; And the Portion of the Word of God, which I intend to make the Ground of my Dis­course, for my own and others Edification, is Recorded in that pre­cious Scripture,

Exod. 3.14, and the last part of Vers. 15. And God said to him, I AM THAT I AM: Say unto them, I AM hath sent thee: This is my Name for Ever, and my Memorial unto all Generations.

In order to these Words, we may consider Three things:

  • 1. The Author of these Words.
  • 2. The Person to whom they were Spoken.
  • 3. The Occasion why they were Spoken.

For the First, The Author of them was the great God of Heaven, the Disposer of all things, the Judge of the whole Earth, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; and therefore considering the Great­ness and Worthiness of Him that speaks, we should have the higher esteem, and give the more diligent heed to what he saith.

2. The Person to whom these Words were spoken, and that was Moses; of whom, Three things are mighty Remarkable and Con­siderable.

First, His Love to God, in that he forsook all earthly Pleasures and Delights, and Chose rather to suffer Affliction with the People of God. Ah! there be few that take Moses Choice, that choose Good­ness more than Greatness, esteeming Poverty better than Riches, and count Godliness more Gain than Wickedness, and rather hazard Bonds and Sufferings, than the Violation of their Consci­ences with false Swearing, &c. That account Raggs with Christ, though on a Dunghil, more than Robes without Christ, though on a Throne.

Secondly, Another thing Considerable in Moses, was his Meek­ness; which is much commended in him, Numb. 12.3. Now the man Moses was very Meek above all the men that were in the Earth; this is a Christ-like Spirit, a Mild Gentle Spirit, and to exercise such a Spirit to those that are of a Froward, Peevish, Proud Disposi­tion, is an excellent Frame; not to return evil for evil, but good for evil; to use gentleness and mildness, for bitterness and frowardness, is a Carriage that makes Christians look most like God: Now Mo­ses was not onely Meek, but very Meek, and that above all the men that were upon the Earth.

A Third thing Remarkable in Moses, was his Faithfulness for God; See how it is spoken to his Praise, Numb. 12.7. compared with Heb. 3.2.

Touching his Faithfulness you have Three things.

First, His being Faithful to declare to the People the whole mind of God, as God communicated it to him; Now when God took him up into the Mount, he might have taken liberty to have varied (and no body have questioned him) either to have added or to have di­minished, [Page 5]to what God had left in charge with him, no he doth not, but is Faithful to that Trust delivered to him.

Secondly, He was Faithful in doing what God Commanded from him, in performing Gods Requirements to him, Exod. 11.26. and therefore when he tells Pharaoh, That God would have the Children of Israel and all they had, go up with them to Worship; Pharaoh was not willing that their Cattel and Flocks should go: Nay, saith Moses, We must not leave a hoof behind. So Faithful was he for God, that not a tittle of the Service of God, must be omited or left undone.

Thirdly, His Faithfulness to God appeared, in that he closely follow­ed and served the Lord even to his last day; He persevered to the last, in a full and faithful following of the Lord, and therefore the Lord writes this praise and commendation on Moses, He was faithful in all things.

Thus much shall suffice as touching the Person, to whom the Words were spoken. Now I come to the Third thing, the Occasion; Why the Words of my Text were spoken? And in that we shall consider many things very Remarkable.

First, Moses goes to tend upon his Father-in-Law's flock, and in his way, sees a Bush burning, and turning about, said, I will see this great sight, why the Bush burns and is not consumed. The Admiration or Wonder in Moses, was not so much, that the Bush burned, but that it burned and was not consumed; this was the Wonder then, and it's the Wonder now, yea, and will be in all Ages.

Give me leave to enlarge a little upon it; This Bush I compare to the People of God, and the Fire, or Burning, to Afflictions and Persecu­tions. Now it hath been the Marvel in all Ages, that the Bush hath burned, and hath not been consumed, that the People of God have been wonderfully carried forth in the midst of fiery Tryals, that they have seemed rather to overcome then to be overcome, rather con­querers then conquered, to be living daily though dying daily; and this hath occasioned marvel and wonder to the men of the World; Witness those three Children in Daniel, that were in the burning Fur­nace, and yet not consumed; Witness those worthy Martyrs of late days, whose life and liveliness in Suffering made their Adversaries amazed, that the Bush burned, and was not consumed, when they saw their inward man lived and renewed, in the midst of their dying and bitter deaths. Now if the men of the World would do like dili­gent Moses, turn aside and be inquirous to behold this great sight, [Page 6]to search into the cause thereof, they might have their marvel ta­ken away, and their wonder removed; Moses looked, and belold the Lord was in the midst of the Bush. Hence see the cause that the People of God have been most Eminently preserved in the Inward-man, and have been born up above and beyond all speakings; in the midst of all Trials and Sufferings, God was in the midst of them; there was, and is, a very gracious Presence of His, accompanying and assisting of them; This is the Reason, this is the Ground why the Bush burns and is not consumed; So they in the fire were preserved, Dan. 3.24, 25. Now when the Lord out of the Bush had called to Moses, He said, in the seventh Verse, I have surely seen the Affliction of my People in Egypt. Hence observe, That God takes notice of his Peoples Affliction, yea, spe­cial notice; I have surely seen, saith God. Oh suffering Souls! your Consolations are not small, the Eyes of Heaven are upon you, and your sufferings; the Eye of Love, and the Eye of Pity, is not onely President over you, but Present with you; be you never so remote, or obscure in Suffering, that Eye of Divine Majesty that runs to and fro throughout the whole Earth, will be first on you; I have, saith God, surely seen the Affliction of my People in Egypt. This is a sweet Word of God, My People, though Afflicted, yet Mine; though Oppressed and Hated, yet My People; It's not their Suffer­ings, their Miseries, their Afflictions, that can un-people them, that can break that great cord of Union and Relation, between God and his People; My People, though Oppressed and Persecuted, yet My People; They are never the more Unlovely in my Eyes, never the more Uncomely, though they are trampled upon as dirt, and made as the off-scouring of the World, yet I am not ashamed to own them, I am not ashamed to acknowledge them to be My Peo­ple, and therefore I will own them and stand by them: They are indeed by their Oppressors and Persecutors (having the rod of the wicked over them, making surrows upon them) represented very Unlovely, very Uncomely, very Despicable and Contemptible; yet nevertheless there is not a tittle of my Affection and Love, that I bear to them, abated or diminished, they are My People, yea, and in Egypt. God doth not onely own his People in the worst of Con­ditions, but in the worst of Places also; And therefore he saith, I have surely seen the Affliction of my People in Egypt; Egypt was called The House of Bondage: The Nation of their Oppression: The Land where­in they were Slaves and Strangers. Yet there God owns them, My [Page 7]People in Egypt. It is not Places that makes God at all Disaffected with his People, though they be thrown into Newgate, or elsewhere, the shamfullest of Goals, by his cruelty, whose tender mercies are no better, nor nothing else; yet there will God own them; the loath­somest Dungeons, shall not at all keep God from Communion with his People, He will own them though in Egyt; and saith God, I know their Sorrows; Know their Sorrows he doth, and will he not remedie it? Yea surely: As if the Lord should say, I am acquaint­ed with all their Griefs, I am concerned in all their sufferings: Oh Christians believe this Truth, That God sees all the Afflictions of his People, and knows their Sorrows; God sees for this end, and knows for this end, that he might the better communicate seasonable good to his People. And in Verse 10. saith God, Come now therefore, that thou mayest bring the Children of Israel out of Egypt; Come now, saith God, now is my Time, now is my Opportunity, now is my fit Sea­son to Deliver My People. God's Time of working Deliverance for his People, is when they are in the midst of the greatest straits and sufferings. Now the Lord is imploying and sending Moses with a Message both to Pharaoh, and to his People. Moses very much op­poseth it, and with the Lord pleads two things.

1. His own Unworthiness, Who am I, saith he, that I should go to Pharaoh, that I should be imployed in the service of the great God of Heaven? The Lord takes off this Objection by Answering, I will be with thee. The Worthiness of Gods assisting Presence, will far sur­mount and exceed Moses his Unworthiness. One thing here you have worth observing, and that is, That it is not the Meanness, Low­ness, Unworthiness, (simply considered) of poor creatures, that doth exclude or exempt them from Gods service or acceptance; but sin will hinder from both.

A Second thing that Moses pleads against his being imployed, is, Ignorance of Gods Name; He did not know what Name of God he should carry to his poor suffering People; This God answers and declares, and so I come to my Text.

I AM THAT I AM, I AM hath sent unto them; this is my Name for Ever, and my memorial unto all generations. In which Words you have Three things.

1. A Description or Discovery of the Name of God, I AM THAT I AM, or what I ever was.

2. The Perpetuity and Continuance of His Name; This is my Name for EƲER.

3. The use of it to his People; This is my Memorial unto all generations.

From the Occasion of the Words, you have this Observation.

That God Proportions out Sutable and Seasonable Mercies and Com­forts, to his Peoples State and Condition.

You may see that this Truth ariseth naturally from the occasion of these Words, if you consider that these were a People under great Promises from the Lord, and also from Men under great Sufferings and Oppressions; Now to this Afflicted, Oppressed People, God sends this Message, this errand, I AM THAT I AM: No Name of God had been so Sutable, so Seasonable as this, I AM the same that ever I was. I shall shew anon, in due place, how Sea­sonable, how Sutable this Name of God is, to his Suffering People. If God had sent to his People his Name Jah, or Jehovah, it had been something, but it had not been so seasonable as I AM. God usual­ly stays and delays Deliverance, that it may come most Seasonable and Sutable to his Peoples Conditions; Why must they be four hundred years in Affliction? May not two hundred years serve? No, at the end of four hundred years, is Gods time for Deliverance, then will his Mercies come most Seasonable. And truly this I am perswaded, is the very Reason why God seems to keep away deliver­ance from his People, they are not yet come to the greatest of straits; the Mercy will not come so Seasonable and Sutable as God would have it. I might be large upon this Point, but I shall not at this time, though it is a Truth of great concernment, I shall only prove it with an Instance or two, with some Reasons, and then pro­ceed to what remains, which is much upon my heart.

See Gen. 21. from vers. 15. to 21. Poor Agar was in great distress, she and the Babe was like to perish for want of water, she was in the greatest of Straits, gave her self and babe over for death, past all hope of life; Oh then was Gods time, then was his time to appear, and that with a Sutable and Seasonabe Mercy to her State and Condition; and pray, What was that? Her condition was such that she had like to have died with Drought, want of Drink, for she was in a Remote and barren Wilderness, & behold God communicates to her a Well of Water. From hence see, That God proportions out Season­able and Sutable Mercies & Comforts to his Peoples Wants & Necessities. [Page 9]From this Remarkable instance in Agar, you have many consider­able things.

1. That Gods People in their greatest Straits and Wants, make their recourse by Prayer to God: this good Agar did. The times of tribulati­on ought especially then to be the times of supplication. Christs Suffering hour was his praying hour. Times of Afflictions puts Saints upon Petiti­ons at the Throne of Grace.

2. Strange and unexpected ways and means of Deliverance hath God for his People. This is a glorious Truth, but I must but name it: Little did poor Agar think to find Supplies in the Wilderness, no visible means attainable.

3. Observe, That there are such Bowels of Mercy and Love in God towards his, that he usually, yea frequently, not onely grants their De­sires, but gives them more, yea over and above. Poor Agar begs a lit­tle Water of God to preserve the life of her and her little babe, and lo, God gives her a Well of Water. So Solomon asked for Wisdome; God did not onely give him That, but Riches, and Honour also. I must proceed.

A Second notable Instance you have, is, concerning Sampson, Judg. 15.18, 19. He having a very great thirst, like to die, the Lord in a miraculous maner preserved him, and communicated a Sutable Mercy to him, and gave him Water out of the Jaw-bone of an Ass. One thing here I shall mind unto you, that is, Sometimes I have marvelled at the exceeding Drought and Thirst that came upon Sampson, immediately after the Deliverance obtained, by the help of the Lord against his Enemies. I suppose that his great Thirst came not by reason of his great Fighting; He might be thirsty, but not upon that account unto death, considering the Lord helped him; But now for him to be by thirst, near death, there lies some­thing in it; and therefore I humbly judge, that this thirst was sent as a Judgement from the Lord, and that upon two accounts:

1. His too much Vaunting, Applauding and Praising of himself for this Victory; See his high proud Words, With the Jaw of an Ass have I slain a thousand men.

2. Not returning the Praise and Honour to whom it was due, and therefore the Lord might be angry & displeased with him, & to shew him his own weakness, frailty and infirmity, that he might not glory in himself, but to see that without the Lords assistance, he was but a dead man, & therefore I conceive this thirst came: And then betook [Page 10]himself to prayer; and though after mercy received, he was unmind­ful of his duty, yet now his great wants and straits make him mind his duty, and help; and when Sampson had tasted of Gods anger, then you shall have him acknowledge God having a hand in the De­liverance, but not before.

So likewise the Prophet, having fled into the Wilderness, being driven to great wants, the Lord administred food to him by Ravens; and so the Lord communicated Sutable Comforts to his Servant. I might name many more, but I would hasten, and briefly now give you the Reasons of it. I shall at present name but two; Why God proportions out Sutable Mercies to his Peoples Conditions.

The First is, To enlarge their Experiences of Him. Not a Sutable Mercy or Comfort comes to us from God, but it is to stock us with Experience; for Experience of God's goodness is of great use to a dependance on God.

Secondly, It is To heighten our Praises to Him, that we may much be carried forth in new Songs of Praises to the Lord. A word of Use to this, and so proceed and come to the thing I aim at.

Seeing God doth proportion out Sutable Comforts to his Peoples Conditions; then be Exhorted, To walk Sutable to such a God as this is, be perswaded to walk answerable to a God of such Sutable Comforts, and seasonable Mercies. Oh the Sutable Comforts that his poor Ser­vants have enjoyed in their Bonds and Sufferings! that when all the World shall frown, then to have the God of Heaven smile; that when the World strips us of all outward Injoyments, then to have them made up with inward and special Injoyments; when the men of the World put a bitter cup into our hands, then for our Father to sweeten it for us; when we hear the worst news from Earth, we can then have the best news from Heaven: Oh this is Seasonable and Sutable Comfort: It's true we want our Liberties, but yet we have the blessed Liberty of the Sons of God: It's true we are in Bonds, under Restraint, Oh but yet our souls are not in bonds, our Consci­ences are not captivated to sins and lusts: it's true we are in the hands of cruel and unreasonable men, but yet we are in the hands of a faithful Creator. Fellow-sufferers, consider it and believe it, you that experience Gods goodness, in Sutable Comforts to you, know, that he expects that it should work rare effects in you, and produce eminent and sutable walkings towards him. Thus much for the first thing, being occasional from the Words; I shall now come to the chief thing I aime at.

I AM THAT I AM, this is my Name for Ever, and my Memorial unto all Generations. The Doctrine, Conclusion, or wholsome Truth, which arises from these Words, is this;

That the great and serious Consideration of Gods Name, I AM, being the same to his People in all ages, is of mighty use and benefit to Comfort and Consolate the hearts and spirits of his People, in the midst of all their Troubles and Sufferings.

This is a great and weighty Truth, and there lieth much sap and marrow in it, and therefore I do earnestly desire that it may dwell in the hearts of all the Suffering sons of Sion this day; and this Truth I judge ariseth naturally from the Words; for in the Doctrine you may observe these several Branches.

  • 1. That Gods Name is, I AM.
  • 2. That it is so for EVER to his People.
  • 3. That the serious consideration thereof, is of use to Comfort and Con­solate the People of God in their Sufferings.

Now consider well the Text, and you shall find this Truth couch­ed in it; And consider the Persons to whom it was communicated, being the People of the Lord under great Sufferings and Troubles, and you may plainly perceive, that the great aime, and designe of God here is, that his People through a serious Consideration of his Name, I AM THAT I AM, should be much consolated and refreshed, in the midst of their Troubles and Sufferings.

In the managing of this weighty Truth, I shall lay down Four Things.
  • I. Prove it to you, and shew you what is Gods Name, and how it endures for Ever.
  • II. Declare how, and wherein Gods Name, I AM, is the same to his People in all ages; and shew you that this Truth is of mighty use and benefit to bear up their hearts in Suffering.
  • III. Give you the Reasons of this Truth, which are very consider­able, Why the Lords Name, I AM THAT I AM, is his Name for EVER, and continued to his People to all Generations.
  • IV. Give you the wholsome and seasonable Uses and Conclusions of this Subject.

I. What Gods Name is, and the Duration of it. This Name of [Page 12]God, I AM THAT I AM, is wrapt and bound up in His most glorious Attributes; See that notable Text in Exod. 34.5, 6. And proclaimed the Name of the Lord; Now what was the Name of the Lord? See, and you shall find it declared, and held forth in His Attributes, The Lord, the Lord God, Long-suffering, Merciful and Gracious; Here is the Mercy of God, keeping Mercy for thousands, for giving iniquity, transgression and sin; Here is the Faithfulness of God, and by no means clearing the guilty; Here is the Justice of God. Now that the Name of God endures, see Psal. 102.26, 27. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure; thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. Here you see that this God, who hath declared himself I AM, is of continuance, he endures, he is the same and changes not. Oh it's a blessed thing to consider, that God is now the same that e­ver he was, His Name is I AM, and this is his Name for Ever, Psal. 72.17. His Name shall endure for Ever, His Name shall be continued as long as the Sun, and Men shall be blessed in him. Oh this Name of God, I AM, is the Name that shall continue and en­dure, and whereby men shall be blessed, Mal. 3.6. For I am the Lord, I change not. From hence you may see the nature of Gods Name to his People, He is the same, and changes not, Psal. 135.3. Thy Name, O Lord, endureth for ever, and thy Memorial, O Lord, un­to all generations. From hence you may observe the sweet harmony and joynt-agreement, the Spirit of God hath here with my Text, the self same language expressed.

But Secondly, take notice, with what Zeal and Affection, and Cor­dial desire, the Prophet Declares the Name of the Lord. Oh Lord, saith he, thy Name endures for ever; and when he speakeh of Gods Me­memorial, O Lord, saith he, it endures to all generations, he fals as is were into admiration of the Name of God. The next Verse declares part of Gods Name. First, His Faithfulness, He will judge His People, or plead for them. Secondly, His Mercy, And He will repent Him­self concerning His servants, and that is in keeping back the intend­ed evil, and giving them the promised good. One text more, and then I have done with this, Isaiah 63.15, 16. The People and Church of God at that time, as it is now, were in a very miserable and deplorable state, as may be discerned by their expressions in their requests: Look down from Heaven, and behold from the habitation of Thy Holiness and Glory. And the Church seems to remind the Lord of some remisness in some things, as if God had been wanting to some [Page 13]of his distressed People, and so had forsaken them, and therefore in vehement sorrow saith, Where is Thy zeal, Thy strength, the sounding of Thy bowels and of Thy mercies, are they restrained? As if this poor People should say, Ah Lord, Our Condition is sad, our State miserable, and Thou seemest to be a stranger, Where is Thy zeal, Thy affection to Us? How doth that seem to decline and decay? Where is Thy strength that should be most helpful to us now? Oh where is the sounding of Thy bowels and mercies, where is that yearning of bowels, that sympathizing, that compassionate, melting, commiserating of thy Peoples miseries? Ah Lord, say they, are they restrained, are they bound up, art Thou grown obdurate against Thy poor People? Now do but observe what Argu­ments this poor afflicted People use, and from thence draws com­fort.

First, The Interest they had in God; Donbtless, say they, without all doubt Thou art our Father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and thou art our Father, though Israel acknowledge us not. From hence you may observe three Things.

1. That Saints in the greatest of miseries have an eye to the Interest they have in God.

2. Interest in God is of great support to Saints in times of greatest straits. This hath born up the Spirit of Gods People in their trials and sufferings; what if all the men of the World were mine ene­mies, and all the malice and envy of men my accusers, and all the devils my tormentors? yet if God be my Father, if I have an Interest in Him, I have all unspeakable Help, Relief and Support.

3. The certain assured knowledge of the Interest in God affords great Comfort, Satisfaction and Contentment to such, though others know it not or be ignorant of it; Though Abraham be ignorant of us, yet thou art our Father.

A Second Argument that these People sucked Comfort from, was the remembrance of Gods Name, and therefore saith, Thy Name is from Everlasting; as if the Church should say, though I am afflicted and suffer, yet the Name of my God remains, yea it is from ever­lasting. Hence observe, That Gods everlasting Name afords lasting comfort to his People.

The third Argument was, the Relation they had to God, and that is in the last Verse, We are Thine, Thy peculiar People in Covenant with Thee, and Thou never rulest over the heathen, Thou never hadst that rule and reign in their hearts and consciences, as thou [Page 14]didst over and in us, and we are called by Thy Name, we do repre­sent Thee to the World. Thus much shall suffice for the first thing premised.

Now I come to the Second thing proposed, and that was, to De­clare how or wherein Gods Name, I AM, is the same to his People in all ages; and that this Truth is of such weight and concernment, that it's able to comfort and consolate the hearts and spirits of Gods People in the midst of their troubles, and sufferings: In the proof of this I shall indeavour to shew wherein Gods Name is the same to his People.

And first, as touching Gods Power; His power and strength is ve­ry great, that let the troubles be never so many, and never so great, yet Gods Power is as great yea greater. We will first consult with some Scriptures, that speakes aloud to this Truth, and then apply it, Nahum 1.3. The Lord is great in Power; Oh believe this Truth and it will administer comforts in your Straits; Are your sufferings great, remember The Lord is great in Power, Deut. 9.29. Speaking of the Children of Israel, saith, Thou broughtest them out by thy migh­ty Power; as God hath Mighty Power, so it is ingaged for the good of His People, Luke 9.43. And they were all amazed at the mighty Power of God: Gods Power is so Mighty, that it amazes the very Adversaries of his People, Psal. 147.5. Great is our Lord, and of great Power; We have a peculiar Relation to Him that hath this great Power, He is our Lord, Gen. 17.1. I am the Almighty God, walk before me and be thou perfect; God hath here declared him­self to be the Almighty God, the Alsufficient God, able to answer and supply all wants and necessities, as if God should say to Abra­ham, Walk thou before me and be thou perfect. Now lest he should object and say, Ah Lord, They that do walk perfectly before thee, will meet with many troubles, be exposed to many hardships and losses; well, saith God, matter it not, I am the Almighty God, the Alsufficient God; Let the Troubles of his People be never so great, yet the Lord is Almighty, great in Power and strength. Now seriously consider this first thing, as part of the Name of God, remember Gods Name, I AM, He is the same now as ever he was, as Powerful as ever, as Strong as ever, as Mighty as ever, This is his Name for Ever, and his Memorial unto all generations. Oh suffering Christians, give me leave to tell you, that your Fathers Power is your greatest Pillar of support in times of difficulties. See that pretious Text in [Page 15]2 Chron. 16.9. The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of those whose hearts are perfect towards him. From hence note, That there is Mighty Power and strength in God, handed forth and exercised for the good of his People. This truth really believed how mightily would it caution the Lords People, to take heed of fears, and to live above them. One word of Use, and I conclude this.

Oh let us sing Songs of praise of our Gods Power, it is true Gods Power is matter of fear and terror to the wicked, but its matter of comfort and joy to the Saints, Psal. 59.16. I will sing of thy Power, when the soul is in great troubles, and sufferings; and consider what God is, what his Name is, that he is the Mighty Powerful God, and then consider that he is the same, His Name is, I AM, that the poor soul is ready to sing forth of Gods Power; Believe it fellow Christi­ans, you are in the hand of God, Deut. 33.3. Observe all his Saints are in his hand, not some but all; oh you be safe enough, there is none can pluck you out of your fathers hand; and besides he hath all Power in his hand, 2 Chron. 19.6. Oh then my dear Brethren, be not hopeless, for God leaves you not helpless; What can harm you? you have the Power of God to arm you; then labour to undergo all here, for you shall not onely be delivered from all, but be conquerors over all. This is the first thing.

A Second thing relating to Gods Name, wherein he is the same now as ever, and that is his Wisdom; He is as Wise now as ever, and as Prudent in managing his Peoples concernments, as ever. Oh the great Wisdom of our God, in ordering our affaires, it's matter of great Comfort and Consolation. But first we will see what the Scri­pture saith concerning Our Gods Wisdom, Rom. 16.27. To God onely Wise be glory; As God is Wise, so He is onely Wise, none like Him, 1 Tim. 1.17. To the onely Wise God be glory. Col. 2.3. In whom are hid all the treasures of VVisdom and Knowledge; In our God are treasures of Wisdom; Consider this dear friends, is there any Trouble or Calamity befalls you, that you know not how to come out of it, or be rid of it, well remember that your God hath Trea­sures of VVisdom and Knowledge. Isa. 40.28. There is no searching of the Lords Understanding, it is so deep and large, and therefore though that cannot be searched, yet it can search all things, God is the alone and onely VVise God, now in 1 Cor. 1.25. there is a saying something strange, that the Apostle speaks, and some would [Page 16]be apt to conclude, that it was something contradictory to what hath been said; his words are, that the foolishness of God is wiser then men; in­timating, as if there were some Foolishness in God; the Apostle doth not speak nor intend it in the least, but he was speaking of upbraid­ing mens wisdom, that to such the foolishness of God was wiser, he doth not say, the foolishness in God, but of God; but had allu­sion to the Saints, whom as foolish things of God, were chosen to confound the Wise; Now God is so perfect in Wisdom, that the very Angels he chargeth with folly, and it's said of the Lords Understand­ing that it is Infinite.

Now consider this seriously, God is great in Wisdom, and as he was always so he is now, I AM THAT I AM, that is His Name for Ever, a Wise God, that by his wise disposing of things, can make all things work for good, and can turn all your troubles and sufferings, to the best advantage or profit, that you shall reap the fruit thereof with great gain and increase; He by His Wisdom can order the Saints troubles and sufferings to be further footings to glory and happiness, that by his Wisdom can allure His People into the Wilderness, and there speak comfortably to them; Now what a comfort is it to consider, that our Gods Name is I AM, still the same to His People as ever He was. A word to Apply this, Is our God onely and alone Wise, Then let us leave all our Concernments and affairs to his dispose; Our Father knows what is best for us, and what will conduce to our good and His glory.

Well, to proceed to the Third thing, and that is the Faithfulness of God; Gods Faithfulness is of mighty weight and concernment, that His Name is, I AM, the Faithful God, as Faithful now as ever. Gods Faithfulness consists chiefly in fulfilling and perform­ing and making good all Promises and Prophesies; See the voice of the Scripture concerning this Truth, Deut. 7.8, 9. But because the Lord God loved you, here was the Mercy of God, and because He would keep the Oath which he sware unto your Fathers, here was the Faith­fulness of God, the Lord hath brought you out with a Mighty hand, here is the Power of God, and redeemed you from the house of bondmen, and out of the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt, here is declared the Justice of God: Thus consider, see, and observe here you have His Name, which he sent by Moses to his People, I AM THAT I AM, this is my Name for Ever; See what the Lord saith further in the ninth Verse, Know therefore that the Lord thy God He is God, [Page 17]What God? A Faithful God, which keepeth Covenant and Mercy, with those that love Him and keep His Commandments to a thou­sand generations. The Lord is not onely exactly, compleatly, and perfectly Faithful, but he is mighty large in his Faithfulness, the extent of it reacheth to a thousand Generations; Here the Lord in­cludes and intends all his People, that are, or ever will be in the VVorld: One Generation continues about a hundred years if not more. Now its not reasonable to imagine, that there would be from that time these words were spoken, to the end of the World, a thou­sand Generations; Onely this Scripture shews the large extent of the Faithfulness of God, it reaches all Saints in all Ages, even to a thousand Generations, if it be possible there may be so many, while the VVorld continues. Oh lay up this Word of God in your hearts, our God is a Faithful God, 1 Cor. 10.13. God is Faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above what you are able, but will with the tem­ptation, make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it: The faith­fulness of God is as much ingaged in his Peoples sufferings, as any other of His Attributes. In His Peoples Sufferings His Faithfulness is engaged Three ways.

First that their Sufferings shall not exceed,

  • 1. His Precepts to them.
  • 2. Other Saints before them.
  • 3. The strength he gives them.

Secondly, His Faithfulness is engaged, that in their Sufferings for Him, He will stand by them, own them, and be with them.

Thirdly, His Faithfulness is ingaged to make good his Promises to them, in delivering and freeing them from troubles. Oh Christi­ans are your troubles and Sufferings great, and like to be greater, and you are even ready to sink under them; well remember your Gods Name, I AM THAT I AM: He is the Faithful God, as Faithful now as ever, Psal. 36.5. Thy Mercy O Lord is in the Heavens, and thy faithfulness reacheth to the clouds. This Scri­pture holds forth the multitude or abundance of Gods Faithfulness, that it reacheth to the clouds; As wicked mens sins, when they are multitudes and numerous, they are said to reach up to Heaven; so the Faithfulness of God is so continued to his, that it even reach­eth up to the clouds, Psal. 119.90. Thy Faithfulness is to all ge­nerations; This also is a precious Scripture, that no soul in no age, though in the last days, and in the latter end of the World, when wickedness will abound, and strange and dark Providences, with [Page 18]desmal dispensations will be seen in the earth, yet Gods faithfulness abides still, it endures unto all generations; therefore no soul, in what age or state soever, should be cast down or troubled, but to mind the Name of God, I AM THAT I AM, the Faith­ful God: Oh that Christians in all their troubles and sufferings would have an eye to the Faithfulness of God, and unfeignedly be­lieve it, for it's of mighty use to bear up your hearts in the midst of troubles; and truly I am perswaded, that when God sent Moses with his Name I AM, to his afflicted People, he had thus much in his eye, and upon his heart, His Faithfulness in keeping Covenant with them, and performing His Promises to them: The Faith­fulness of God is one of his principal Attributes, and the great splen­dor and beauty of his Name, though all the Attributes of God are Perfect; What were it (if I may speak with holy reverence) for God to be Powerful and Wise, if not Faithful? The Faithfulness of God is the great Bulwark of his People in their Troubles. Consider that in no age, there was no Saint whatsoever to whom God was un­faithful: If some say, there may be some one or other; shew me that man or woman, what is their Name, where dwell they, when was it, or where was it, that God was not Faithful? I dare engage my soul, and its eternal welfare, that God is not unfaithful to any of his; Far be it from me, or any to think that there is unfaithful­ness in God; His People may be unfaithful to Him, but He will not be so to them; If there be any of Gods Promises not perform­ed, it's not His fault, but His Peoples; His Promises being Conditi­onal, they breaking, or not keeping the Condition, and so miss of the Promise to which the Condition is annexed; They break their Words and Promises with the Lord, but as for God, Let Him be true, and every man a liar; nay, it's impossible for God to lye. Thus much for the Third thing.

A Fourth thing concerning Gods Name, is His Justice; God is very Just and Righteous, and that is, in rendering punishment on his Enemies.

Dear Friends, your Enemies are great, and they are many, and their malice, cruelty and oppression, is very much, and increased; Well, be not troubled, remember you the Name of your God, I AM, He is Just, yea and as Just now as ever, in punishing his enemies; Turn to the Testimony, Psal. 9.16. The Lord is known by the Judgments which he executeth, the wicked are ensnared in the [Page 19]work of their hands. Higgaion Selah. This is a Scripture of great weight. There are two ways whereby he is known to the World.

1. By His Mercies.

2. By His Judgements: And they that will not know Him the former way shall know him the latter. But what shall the wicked know of God by his Judgements, that he is a Just God, a Righteous God, and saith the Spirit of God, The wicked are ensnared in the work of their own hands. This is a certain and assured truth, That wicked mens handy-works, or their actions, prove their own ensnaring; This was true in Ahithophel, Haman, and Judas, and therefore the Lord writes upon this Scripture, Higgaion Selah, that is, to be often Observing, and diligently Meditating on it, to see the Justice and E­quity of God to the wicked, in that their own works should ensnare them: Job 34.17. God is called there, most Just, exactly and com­pleatly Just; as God is faithful in rewarding His People, so he is as faithful and Just in punishing the Wicked. I will make a little Use of this, and so hasten.

Fret not your selves at the Prosperity and welfare of the wicked, your enemies, neither do you seek after revenging your cause on them, commit that to the Lord; Vengeance is His, and he is both Mighty and Able to deal with your adversaries, and He will do it in His due time; For He will plead the controversies of His People, against their enemies. And believe it, the Lord is cutting short the work, and hastening the ruine and destruction of his enemies, by their filling up the measure of their iniquities, and ripening their sins; and the de­liverance of His People draweth nigh, by his casting them into the Furnace of Affliction, to purge and purifie them, that they may come forth like Gold. Again,

The Fifth and last thing relating to the Name of God, I AM. He is the God of all comforts and consolation; Oh this Name, I AM, is a precious Name, there is exceeding great Comforts and Cordials in God for the refreshing of his poor Peoples Spirits, 2 Cor. 1.3. Blessed the God, the God of our Lord Jesus, the Father of Mercies, and God of all Comforts. There is in our God such a Store­house and Fountain of Mercies and Comforts, that is able to supply all His Peoples wants and necessities, Zechariah 1.17. The Lord shall yet Comfort Zion. Notwithstanding the great discouragements and distresses of Gods People, yet Comforts God hath in store for poor bleeding and languishing Sion, 2 Cor. 7.6. Nevertheless, God [Page 20]that Comforteth those that are cast down, Comforteth us. Oh the choice Comforts that God hath for his dejected People! Though God hath in all ages, been open handed and hearted in the dispensing of his Comforts to his People, yet He is as full, and as rich now as ever, His Name is I AM, this is His Name for Ever, God hath choice and variety of Comforts, which he communicates, as he sees most necessary; I hope by this time, that God hath taught his People by experience, that there is no comfort in outward injoyments, crea­tures nor relations, but onely in their Lord God, that they may de­light themselves in His Comforts, and not in borrowed, feigned, pe­rishing Comforts. Hence see, There is no reason why Saints should be sorrowful or cast down, there is bread enough in their Fathers house, He is the God of all Comforts, His Name is, I AM.

A little to Apply this, and so proceed.

Hence see your Priviledges, Excellency and Prerogative, that this God that I have been treating of, whose Name is I AM, is your God, poor suffering Sions God; Oh Sion, though now miser­able, yet thy condition, thy state, so good, so glorious, that the state of Potentates is not fit to be compared with it; thy bonds and iron chains, are of far greater value than Crowns & Diadems; there is not a step of Misery or Suffering, that doth befal Sion upon Jeho­vah's account, but it conduces a footstep to its further happiness and glory: And all this, because this God, whose Name is I AM, is theirs; though Sions foes which are many and mighty may bereave her of all comfortable things here, yet this God of Comforts they cannot take away.

2. Take heed my Brethren and fellow Citizens of Glory, of sinning and offending such, such a God as this is, be careful of grie­ving of Him, lest He withdraw himself, and hide his face from you; Oh remember and fear that sad Lamentation, in Lamentation 1.16. This Church of God had very much sinned against the God of Com­forts; See vers. 8. Jerusalem hath grievously sinned: but see the sad complaint she makes, vers. 16. For these things I weep, mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water: Why what was the matter, that this Church doth so sorrow and lament? Mark, because the Com­forter that should relieve my soul, is far from me: Oh let their fals be your warnings.

But Thirdly consider, if God be so to his People now, as I have declared, and continues his Name I AM to them in an afflicted [Page 21]state, suffering state, low and miserable state; Oh do but con­sider and that with astonishment, what will he do for them, and be to them, when they are in a glorified state, perfected state? Doth he do thus to them now they are uncomely, now they wear raggs, now they are the off-scouring, now they have their imperfections, and failings towards Him? Oh, oh, what will his Name, I AM, be to them then, when they shall be very comely, when they shall shine as the Sun, be equal with Angels, full of holiness and perfection? Consider this and stand in admiration.

If God afords a mighty presence to a burning Bush, to a suffering creature, oh what will he do to a glorified Saint! Thus much for the Second thing.

Now the Third thing proposed was, The Reasons and Grounds why the Lord continues his Name, I AM, the same to his People.

First, That they might not be destroyed nor consumed. Gods un­changableness to us, is the cause of our not changing from our con­dition to worse. See Mal. 3.6. I am the Lord, I change not; there­fore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed; as if the Lord should say, I am the Lord, I AM THAT I AM, this is my Name for Ever, I change not; for this cause my People are not consumed. Ah my friends, if God were changable as man, and as mutable as man, where should we have been at this time? how soon would our condition be far worse then it is? Really, if God should not continue his Name to his People, I AM, His Power, His Faithfulness, His Wisdom, His Comforts, their state would be very miserable.

But Secondly, Why this Name of God is continued for ever to his People? It is to engage them to Him, to draw up the hearts and af­fections of His People close to Him: If any Truth is of an ingaging nature, this is; it engages the Saints in their whole man for God, their life and all for God, yea and that in the worst of times; If the very Name of God be engaged for me, there is all the Reason, why my All should be engaged for God. And therefore Christians look to it, that wherein you come short in this particular, you come short in answering the end of Gods Name to you. I must but name the Reasons of this Truth, because of time.

Thirdly, to shew, Why God continues his Name for Ever; because that there is none like him, nor none to be compared to him; he is [Page 22]indeed the chiefest of ten thousand: there is no King like Him, nor no Potentate like Him, a man may be in their favours to day, and, at a little displeasing of them, be turned out to morrow; but its not so with our God, whose Name is, I AM, its not a small matter that moves Him to take hold of Judgement: He is said to be slow to anger, though its true, a small matter (moves Him to Mercy) and when His People do sin against him, yet he is loath to use the rod, if Mercy may prevaile, yea He waits to be gratious; there is no Fathers, nor Husbands like to our God, for they are momentary and perish, but our God endures, and his Name to all Generations. This being seriously considered, is it not reasonable to leave and for­sake all to cleave to this God: What have we to do, to own or stand by any earthly Monarch, but onely that Monarch KING JESUS, Who in Scripture is declared to be, The onely Potentate, and all near and dear Relations are to be forsaken, when they come in competition with our God.

But Fourthly, Because of the near Relation between God and his People, He therefore continues his Name to them; God is rela­ted to his People, not onely as a Father, and they his Children, but He as their Bridegroom and Husband, and they His Wife and Spouse; and so from that near Relation to them, he reserves entire affection for them.

But Fifthly, Why God continues his Name for Ever to his People; Because of the great need and necessity His People stand in of him: whilst His People are here, they are subject to wants and necessities, both to the outward and inward man, and therefore the Lord con­tinues his Name.

But Lastly, Because of the sweet Promises of the Lord, to his People. See the 28. Matth. 18, 20. All Power in Heaven and Earth is mine, and lo I am with you to the end of the World, This I AM hath promised to be with them to the end of the World, and therefore continues his Name to them for ever.

Now I shall come to the last thing I proposed, and that was, The wholsome Uses and Conclusions of this Truth; which are ten.

First is, Gods Name, I AM. Is He the same to his People now that Ever He was, doth he not change? Then let His People be exhort­ed in the fear of the Lord to be alwayes the same to the Lord, as they have professed, and not change in their love, and service to Him. Oh my [Page 23]friends, this that I speak is but your reasonable service. God is un­changable to you, be you so to him, though not in the quantity of it, yet in the quality of it; the Lord is as Powerful for you now as Ever, Oh be you so to Him, lay out all your strength and might for him; the Lord is as Wise now to order things for your good as ever, be you therefore Wise for Him, let your care and prudence be to please Him, and your wisdom to walk so, that he may be honoured; the Lord is as Faithful for you now as ever, be you therefore Faith­ful for Him, and manifest your Faithfulness;

  • 1. In a due observance of all his known Commands.
  • 2. In a circumspect Walking before Him.
  • 3. In a faithful Testimony against the Abomination of the Day.
  • 4. In a close and full Following of the Lord, through all Trials and Sufferings.

Consider that precious Scripture, Heb. 10.32. But call to remem­brance the former days, in which after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of Afflictions; How seasonable might this word of Alarm be given to the Churches of Christ in these Isles? how are they dege­nerated? how have they declined, and turned their backs upon the great and holy Commands of God, that at the Command of a mor­tal man, omit, and lay aside the Worship and Service of God? It's my earnest desire, that the Lord would rouse and waken his poor shattered and decayed Churches, that they may remember from whence they are fallen and repent, and remember their former days, the days of Liberty and freedom, wherein they were very zealous and couragious for God, and made solemn Promises and Engagements, what they would do, and be for God, in an evil day: Let all the Lords People seriously consider and examine. Oh be exhorted to be as zealous for God now as ever, be as faithful for Him now as ever, seeing Gods Name is the same now as Ever.

A Second Conclusion of this point is; Is Gods Name I AM, the same to his People as ever? Then This Doctrine speakes terror to the wicked, Gods enemies; and that upon two accounts.

1. This God is none of theirs, they have no Interest in His Name, and all that I have spoken, they are not at all concerned in it; its true Gods Name is pretious, but its onely to his People, the dearly beloved of his Soul.

2. This speaks terror to the wicked, in that, as God is not theirs, so he is their enemy, their foe, His Power, His Wisdom, His Faith­fulness, [Page 24]His Justice, is all engaged against them; God is not be­come their enemy upon the account of the first mans transgressions, for all that is pardoned, justified, and acquitted, and reconciled. God stands an enemy to men now, by reason of their actual sins, their rebellion against God, opposing his ways, hating his People.

A Third Conclusion of this truth is; Is Gods Name I AM? Is He the same to his People now as ever, and that for ever? Then let this teach us to live by faith, to look now on invisibles, to live no more by sence, but to act faith in a high measure; for Gods Name is I AM, Rom. 1.28.

There are Three principal Things in living by Faith.

1. You answer the work of the day; the very work of this day calls loudly to Saints for a living by Faith; the very dealings and dispensations of God, intend no less then a living by Faith: Did ever poor Sion see such a day as this? They who are awakned, and right sensible, know my meaning; It's not for you Christians now to live by sence, but to look up higher.

2. Your living by Faith, makes you more singular and peculiar in your life than others; this will eminently distinguish the sincere from the hypocrite, the precious from the vile: If the carnal and lukewarm professor live by sence, let not the Spiritual Christian do so; Oh you must live more singular than others, for to you this Name of God, I AM, is for ever.

3. Living by Faith frees you from fears; I never wonder that men are so full of fears, they live so much by sence, 2 Cor. 5.7. We walk by Faith and not by sight; It's the living too much upon sight and sence that produceth fears, but the living by Faith, doth prevent fears and doubts. See 2 Cor. 4.16. The Apostle is declaring there, that notwithstanding all their troubles and trials, yet they fainted not, they were not possessed with fears; And what was the reason of it? pray see vers. 18. While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things that are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. Hence see the reason and ground, why these pretious souls did not fear nor faint in their trials, they lived by Faith and not by sence; and this is a great cause and ground of fears and doubts this day, in the hearts of many of the Lords People; They look upon seen things, things that are; they see and behold great men are against them, the Nobles, the Ge­rals, the Mayors, the Army is against them; they look and see [Page 25]themselves all weak and impotent, most of them in strong Prisons; I but this was not the Primitive Saints practice, for they did look not at things seen, for saith the Apostle, they are temporal, all perish­ing: Kings are temporal, Generals, Mayors, and Armies are temporal and perishing; Well, saith the Apostle, We look at things which are not seen, and that looking was by Faith, and the things not seen, were the great King of kings, the Lord of hosts, all the powerful and mighty Angels, and the like; And this was Eternal, God Eter­nal, His Name Eternal, his Power and Faithfulness Eternal.

A Fourth Conclusion from these Words is, Seeing Gods Name is I AM, the same that ever he was to his People; Then Take heed of casting dirt on the Name of God, be careful of villifying of it; It's very sad to consider that many professing themselves Children of God, should be instrumental to help the blaspheming of Gods Name; Oh that this precious Name should be blemished by any of His People! Rom. 2.24. For the Name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles, through you; They were the cause. How tender are men of their own Name and Reputation? how much more then should they be of Gods? Oh me thinks how sad is it to consider, that the wicked daily reproach Gods Name, and villifie it, and yet for his own Children to add and help to it? Jam. 2.7. The Apo­stle calls it, A worthy Name, which men blaspheme: And believe it, of all things, God takes it most heinously from his People; He ex­pects little else from his Enemies, but far better from his People: To receive a wound from a dear friend, pierces inward. And one thing you may observe by the way, That God deales more speedily and severely with his People, for occasioning his Names blaspheming, than with the wicked: Witness David and others.

A Fifth Conclusion of this Point; Seeing Gods Name is I AM, the same to his People for Ever: Then Endeavour to hold fast the Name of God; Let there be a close keeping of it, not onely hold it, but hold it fast: See Revel. 2.13. The great Praise and Commen­dation of this People was, in that They held fast the Name of God, and did not deny his Faith; but their greater glory, and excellency was, They held fast his Name in bad times, and bad places; Thou dwellest, saith God, where Satan dwelleth, where Satans seat is, and there, yea in that place, thou heldest fast my Name; And besides, thou heldest fast my Name in a very bad time, even in those days wherein Antipas My faithful Martyr was slain: It was a great day of trial and trouble, [Page 26]a day of much Persecution, yet in such a day as this did these souls hold fast the Name of God. And concerning Antipas, you have Two things remarkable from the Lords mouth:

First, that of all his virtues and graces, which were many, God commends and takes notice chiefly of his Faithfulness; Antipas my Faithful servant: Oh God chiefly eyes, principally minds, and eminently will reward His Peoples Faithfulness towards Him. Antipas being a great Pillar in the Church, abounds in many vertues, his love to God, to his People, to the souls of men; his Faith, Meek­ness, Prayer and Sincerity; Oh but Perseverance crowns all; it's Faithfulness that Gods heart is much affected with.

But Secondly, The Lord calls Antipas his faithful Martyr, My Martyr; though it's possible he died as an Evil-doer, as an Heretick, and Blasphemous Heresie; It's no matter, how men put him to death, how men called him, God owns and calls him, His Mar­tyr. This should encourage Saints, not to matter how ignomini­ously and shamefully they suffer, stigmatized with dreadful Names, yet God speaks otherwise, His thoughts are not as mens thoughts. Now in Three Things the Lords People may be said to hold fast His Name.

1. By a holy and reverend esteem thereof, there should be re­verence to it.

2. By a heavenly and special walking sutable to it, to the honour and praise thereof.

3. By not counting any thing dear to it, our own Names and Lives meet to be given up for it.

A Sixth Conclusion of this Subject is; Is Gods Name, I AM, to his People the same for Ever? Oh then Praise and Prize this God, let your hearts be drawn forth in Praising of Him; Here is matter and ground of Praise for His People to all generations, Psal. 68.4. Sing unto God, sing Praises to his Name. And Psal. 96.8. Give unto the Lord the glory due to his Name: Praises are due to the Name of God, Oh therefore Praise this Name of God: And that upon a Fourfold account.

1. He is yours peculiarly, you have a peculiar Interest and right to him.

2. He is yours freely, the Interest you have in him, came freely to you, though dear to Christ.

3. He is wholly yours, you have a whole God, and a whole Christ, [Page 27]nor a part: Every particular and individual Saint in the World can say properly and truly, I have a God, I have a Father.

4. He is Eternally yours; Oh this is the chiefest of all, and therefore Prize the Lord.

A Seventh Conclusion from this Truth, that seeing Gods Name is I AM, the same now as ever; Be perswaded then to suffer and dye for His Name. I am verily perswaded, that had we a right sence and feeling of this Name of God to us, we should be mightily drawn forth, with the Apostle Paul, not onely to suffer bonds, but to die for His Name; And truly God is not wanting, but will do great things for those that Suffer for his Name: See Psal. 119.132. David Beggs, That the Lord would do for him, as He used to do for those that loved his Name; Implying, the Lord did wonderfully for them; And what greater love can be manifested to Gods Name, than suf­fering or dying for it?

The Eight Conclusion from this Point, is God's Name I AM: Is he the same to his People now as ever? Then let this serve to quiet, still and satisfie the Spirits of God's People in the midst of Troubles, of the Lords Dispensation, and of the Worlds Destracti­on: Oh this Precious Cordial, I AM! the same God, rightly believed and rightly applied, is able to make a Calm in the greatest Storm, to afford Peace in the midst of Trouble; it's the true Balm for every disquieted and dejected Mind. See that precious Text, Psal. 46.10. speaking before of great Troubles in the World, great Destractions, and strange Dispensations, he comes in the 10. vers. and speaks to the People of God: Be still, do not you be troubled, be not you cast down nor disquieted, but know that I am God: What God? a powerful God, a wise God, a faithful God, the God of Comforts; I AM THAT I AM; This is my Name for Ever, and my Memorial unto all Generations.

The Ninth Conclusion I draw from this Truth: That seeing Gods Name is I AM, the same that ever He was; Then let your spiritual Wisdom be improved, in turning bad Sights into good Signs: Do you see dark and dismal Sights? Oh remember God's Name, and make good Signs of them: Do you see the Sun stand still? Re­member it was for the Deliverance of God's People by the hand of Joshua? Doth the Dyal of Ahaz go backward fifteen degrees? Oh remember it was a Sign to adde fifteen Years to the life of good Hezekiah. Oh improve God's Dispensations by acting Faith in the [Page 28]Remembrance of his Name; and all sad Sights that may be pre­sented to your view, be as Tokens of future good Signs. Luke 21.28. When these things come to passe, (the verses before-going, shew what things they were) Well, what must we do when they come to passe? then do you look up, and lift up your heads; for your Redemption draweth nigh. The worst of Dispensations affords matter of Con­solation for Gods People; and the Reason lyes here, their God is I AM.

The Tenth and last Conclusion of this Subject: Let all the Sons and Daughters of Sion be intreated to let this Truth, briefly touched upon, dwell in their souls, and sink deep in your hearts and minds, when you are compassed about with greater Troubles, with greater Fears, with greater Tryals and Sufferings than now you have: Oh fix your heart and eye upon this Truth; know that the Lord is God, His Name is I AM; That is His Name for Ever, and His Me­morial to all Generations.

To Conclude, Lay up in your hearts these Scriptures, Prov. 18.10. Psal. 20.7. Psal. 124.8. And the Lord give you understand­ing and blessing in these things.


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