THE MYSTERY OF DREAMES, Historically Discoursed; OR A TREATISE; Wherein is clearly Discovered, The secret yet certain Good or Evil, the inconsidered and yet assured Truth or Falsity, Virtue or Vanity, Misery or Mercy, of mens differing DREAMES. Their Distinguishing Characters: The divers Cases, Causes, Concomitants, Consequences, Concerning mens inmost Thoughts while ASLEEP.

With severall considerable Questions, Objections, and Answers contained therein: And other profitable TRƲTHS appertaining thereunto. Are from pertinent TEXTS plainly and fully unfolded,

By Philip Goodwin Preacher of the Gospel at Watford in Hartfordshire.

Justum abinjusto non Somno sed Somnio discerni.

Aristot. Ethic. lib. 2. &c.

LONDON, Printed by A. M. for Francis Tyton at the Three Dag­gers near St Dustans Church in Fleet-street. 165 [...].


Edmund Calamy.

THE AUTHORS APOLOGY As To the present Matter, OR An Epistle Declaratory. Acquainting the Christian Reader with the Usefull things intended in the TREATISE.

Courteous Reader,

I Crave thy favour, or at least to forbear thy censure, as con­cerning the Subject-Matter of this Book (which [Page] discoursing the HISTORY and MYSTERY of DREAMES) some men may imagine useless, Si enim igno­remus quid sit info [...]nium quot & quae eorum causae & quae e­orum genera. Quaestiones poni solent, quae bene explicari non poterunt. Zanch. T [...]m. 8. Tractat. de Divine. judging both mine and o­ther mens Study of this present Point to be paines to no pur­pose, &c.

But be not discouraged (dear Christian) from a diligent en­deavour to get a due understand­ing in the state of Dreames, for

  • As this hath been very Com­mendable,
  • So this may be still very profi­table.

1. Commendable it hath been in antient times to attain knowledg in Dreames, as may plainly and plentifully appear

  • From Sacred Scriptures, &
  • From other Authors.

1. The Holy Scriptures do much [Page] commend two worthy Men for their wise discernings in Dreames:

  • As Joseph
    Patriarchae divi [...]uatur in tres classes—Inter Patri­arch as tertiae classis enume­ratur. Joseph. Alsted. Chronol. Gen. 40. 12, 13. vers. Gen. 41. 15, 25, 26.
    a Patriarch,
  • And Daniel a Prophet.

1. The Patriarch Joseph, who not Ironically, but Deservedly might be called a Captain-Dreamer▪ for he had not only an admi­rable Transact in imagining Dreames, but a marvellous insight for the interpreting of Dreames. Some to diminish the due praise of this precious Man in this Matter, have said, that his skill in inter­preting Phaarohs Dream, Genes. 4. was meerly out of his observati­on of the River N [...]lus, &c. But by some of late, the most Learned in Divinity and Philosophy Interpretati [...] s [...]mnii Pharonis de pimguibus & ma [...]r is e Nilo as [...]n [...]entibus Josephus non h [...]a [...]si [...] ex consi­deratione natu­ [...]ae Nili. Wen­deli [...] contemp. Phys [...]. [...]e [...]t. 28. cap. 8., hath this been fully confured. Paraeus and other approved Expositors keeping up his praise, conclude [Page] he had not only an humane and low, but a more sublime and Di­vine knowledg in Dreames.

2. The Prophet Daniel anno. 7. exilii Babilo­nici putatur in­terpretatus esse somnium Nebu­buchadneze­ [...]is. Vixit enim in captivitate Babilonica sub Nebuchadne­ [...]e & succes­soribus ejus—Alsted. Chro­ [...]l [...]. Propheta­rum. 154. Daniel who lived in the time of the Babilonian captivity, and about the seventh year thereof, was raised for his rare Dilucidation of Dreames. And among other things herein, that the Scripture reports to his praise: That express passage is much to be pondered, Chap. 1. Vers. 17. As for these four Children, God gave them knowledg and skill in all Learning and Wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all Dreames and Visions.

Out of which saying we consider concerning Daniel,

  • Lege Luther [...]. comm. de [...]o Theologi­ [...] & aliarum artium.
    What is asserted of him with the rest, &
  • What is ascribed to him above the rest.

[Page]1. 'Tis said of Daniel and his Asso­ciates, Hananiah, Michael, and Azariah, three captive Children of the Jews, They all had knowledg and skill in all learning and wisdom. And as Theodoret upon the place well observeth 'tis said, God gave them this knowledg Non tantum Chaldaeorum institutio eos in­telligentes fecit; sed Gratia Di­vina dedit. Theod. in lo­cum.

For as God instructs the Hus­bandman in the wise disposing of his Seed and Soyl Si ita eruditi & instructi sunt agricolae in re­bus tam mini­mis, quid de Doctoribus sen­tiendum est? Et quid, &c. Calvi [...] in lo­cum. Etiam hoc asse­rit Aristo [...]cles. lib. 6. Ethic. cap. 7., Esa. 18. 26. So God much more does assist the Scholar in his Studies of humane Arts and Sciences, by whose bene­diction knowledg herein is attain­ed. This was the common gift of God to Daniel and his other cap­tive-Companions.

2. Daniel above his fellowes is preferred, in that he had a special understanding in all Dreames and Visions. For the compassing of [Page] which, no question (as he was a learned man) he had much help from humane wisdom, with which God had greatly endowed Daniel: So Ex hac scien­tia, & natu­rali, & acqui­sita, & revela­ta, sequitur laus Dani [...]lis. 1. Na­turalem scien­tiam literarum disciplinarum­que humanio­rum non a piis negligi sed co­li op [...]rtere.—2. Etsi haec non tam Naturae beneficio c [...]m­paratur a [...]id [...]li­bus quam singu­lari Dei gratia lucem mentibus ad res etiam naturales perci­piendas.—Jun. Lectiones in Dan. as a most Godly man, he had more used other religious meanes, as Meditation, and Prayer and a more diligent Study of Divine Matters, in which God had raised and increased his knowledg be­yond others in all Dreames and Visions. And as this was the praise of Daniel, so the same would make for the commendation of any other men, as Junius upon the place in divers Documents laies down.

2. See besides Scriptures, other Authors, who do much commend two sorts of men in former times, for their usefull knowledg of Dreames.

  • [Page]As Philosophers
  • And Physicians.

1. The antient Philosophers Cicero hac de re prolixe dispu­tat. lib. 1. De Divinat. De in­somniis igitur dicam non qui­dem omnia quae ab Aristotele & aliis praecla­rissimis Phi­losophis copiose traduntur. Zanch. De Divinat., as Aristotle, Cicero, and severall o­thers of the greatest repute, this is reported to their praise, they saw so much as enabled them to write largely and learnedly of the Nature of Dreames▪ So Zan­chy presents them praise worthy.

2. Those famous Physicians, as Galen Galenus lib. de praesa­giis ex somniis Ex inte­riori dispositione corporis [...]ormatur motus in Phan­tasia—homini in quo a­bundant frigidi humores occurrunt in Somniis quod sit in aqua—Et propter hoc Medici di cunt esse in­tendendum Somniis ad cognoscendum interiores dispositiones.—Aquin. 22ae Quest. 95. Magir. in Physiol. suam. lib. 6. cap. 15. Zanch. Tractat. De Divination [...].Hypocrates, they to their high praise, proved and improved their excel­lent knowledg in Dreames, thereby discerning the Sym­ptomes of severall diseases, and so perceived what pro­per Meanes to propose to their Patients▪ for their more quick recovery. A­quinas and others, give out evi­dent [Page] Instances of such admirable advantages, by which was raised the [...]ame of Physicians in former times; And if it were laudable in them, to look into Dreames to learn out the state of mens bodies, may it not be commendable in o­thers, thereby to discover the case of mens souls?

2. Profitable: this may plainly be proved by what

  • Hath been proposed, &
  • May be produced.

1. Proposed: much hath been by godly In Somnis Deus consola­tur Jacobum, cohibet Abime­lechum, admonet Laba­nem, [...]ortatu [...] Solomonem, &c. Lege Illyricum clav. Scrip. Sac. and learned men in lat­ter times, though little in our Eng­lish Language lies extant, yet in Latin both Polemicall and Practicall Discourses much of use in this case is Discover­ed.

For Writings Polemicall, read [Page] Luther Vide prolix­am & erudi­tam disputatio­nem de somniis & quid sit illis tribuendum. Luth. Ex t [...]mo in Genesin. cap. 40. Luth. [...]. com. [...]ae classis cap. 22., who hath large and learned Disputations and Diluci­dations of Dreames, discussing how they may be discrimi­nated, and what to them may be appropriated.

For Practicall Writings, read Polanus Polan. Syn­tag. Theol [...]. lib. 5. cap. 30. De anim [...]. and others; Such like, who in their learned Systemes of Divinity, have laid down divers usefull Divisions and Determina­tions as referring to Dreame [...] be­sides what other Eminent Men have excellently done, as occa­sioned upon their Commentaries of Scripture, all which might well have been forborn, had not knowledg herein been a benefit to men, yea usefull to the best of Saints.

2. Produced: much may be for the fruitfull profit of all such per­sons [Page] by plain perception, and due discerning of Dreames.

  • Both to assist necessary Know­ledg,
  • And to incite necessary pra­ctice.

And let me here take notice of Dreames in a double sense:

  • As large and extended
    Somniorum duo sunt gene­ra necessario cognoscenda.
    • 1. Quibus alii a Deo fuerunt in structi.
    • 2. Quibus alii a Diabolo de­structi fuerunt.
  • As strict and limited.

1. Dreames largely taken for all of all sorts, to endeavour their due understanding is need­full, that such knowledg may be promoted, and such practice in­cited, as is (to be sure) exceed­ing necessary.

1. Knowledg necessary both herein and hereby, may be much for our benefit.

1. Knowledg in Dreames we have need, and may be much [Page] for our good Observe

  • Our Activity in them, &
  • The Obscurity of them.

1. We Active: They Ʋnus idem­que homo dor­mit & somniat; somnus & som­nium sunt acti­ones ejusdem. Vide Magir. Comment. in Phys. lib. 6. are such motions as wherein we actually concurre. Now as Christ said to his Disciples of Christian duties, If ye know these things, happy are ye if you do them: So may I say to Christians concerning Dreames, If ye do these things, necessary it is you should know them.

2. They Obscure. Dreames go much in the dark, as they usually be in the dark night, so of a darke nature: so vailed and covered, as they commonly require an Inter­preter. A Dream is a Somnium est figuris tectum & sine Interprete intelligi non po­test. August. de spiritu & anima cap. 5. close covered Dish brought in by night for the Soul to feed on; And is it not meet for a man, after to uncover the Dish, to see and know upon what [Page] Meat he hath eaten? that he may not like Isaac, abide beguiled with Kid for Venison, Gen. 28, 32.

2. This Knowledg, viz. of Dreames as in a more generall sense they are considered, may educe a double profitable know­ledg, viz.

  • Certain, &
  • Conjecturall.

1. A certain Knowledg may hereby be brought in about the Reasonable soul of man.

  • In its Positive Being, &
  • In its Putative Working.

1. In dormiendo aliquis habet usum rationis quia saepe in somnis ratioci­natur & praee­ligit unum alteri consentiens vel dissentiens. Aquin. 22ae Quest. 154. A [...]. 5. The reasonable soul in its reall Being, may hereby be readily known. 'Tis sure in some Dreams men are meerly sensitive, sensuall, and bruitish but let a man Dream as a man, and a superiour principle will soon appear.

[Page]3. The rationall soul in its Thought-working, hereby comes to be discovered. The Philoso­pher Vid. Aristot. lib. de Insom. cap. 2. & 3. & lib. de som. & Vigil. cap. 3. & de Gen. ani. cap. 1. de Hist. anim. cap. 10. who disputes to what part or power of the soul Dreames appertain, though he determines rather to the Sensitive than the Intellective, yet so as the soul is therein set a work in a way of Ima­ginations and Cogitations▪ some of which may transcend sense▪ Yea, the most sound do assert that oftentimes Et observan­dum est quod sepe contingit ea i [...] s [...]m [...] nos vi­dere quae run­ [...]uam suerunt in sensu Parae­us. comment. in Genes. that which hath not place in the sensitive part, either antecedent or concomitant, may yet be found in the working thoughts of a Dream. So that by the Knowledg of Dreames, much of mans rationall soul may be cer­tainly known.

2. A Conjecturall knowledg a bout the serious concernments of [Page] man, or matters wherein man may be much concerned. Though from Dreames so considered, a man may make no certain Theses, or infallable conclusions, yet a man may gather probabilities, and may give a great guessEx iis somniis & si nihil certi statuere p [...]ssu­mus conjectare tamen—Qua­lia fuerant Syllae & Lu­culli somnia—Item qualia multa fuerunt quae apud Ci­cer. lib. 1. De Divi. leguntur—Zanch. Tractat de Div.. Men may imagine when awake, from many motions and suggesti­ons in sleep, what may be their advantages. I shall forbear In­stances, which Learned Zanchy and some others declare in the Case.

2. Such Knowledg may profit persons in point of practice:

  • By examining of Dreames that tend to act, &
  • By determining to act beyond Dreames.

1. Men are moved to examine Dreames that does dispose them [Page] to action. Dreames may be Somnium Monicae ambigu­um de filio Au­gustino—Lu­ther. Tom. 2. in Genesin. ambigious, and to deed them may be dangerous; Or on the other side▪ proceeding from Dreames to deeds, may be a duty. And therefore though Dream-impres­sions may make strong propen­sions, and cause Concedit Ari­stotales somnia sae [...]e esse causas nostrarum acti­onum ut cum somno soluti ad [...]ales nos actio­nes accommo­d [...]mus quarum simulachris mens in somno percita suerit—Paraeus Tem. in Genes. Inclinations to act, yet a man wise and well in­structed, will weigh all in Gods balance before, by suitable act­ings he seeks to fulfill the same.

2. Men are moved to deter­mine, actings at other times, beyond all Dreames▪ Some Dreames there are of waking men, yet sleeping sinners. About things of two sorts:

  • Terrestriall and Secular,
  • Caelestiall and Spirituall.

1. Nihil squi­dem differt a s [...]ni vanitate r [...]rum praesenti­ [...] fi [...]ura, sive [...]st [...]s, [...]e pro­sperae. &c. Am­bros. de juga seculi. cap. 5. Dreames about and upon the pleasures and honours of the [Page] world. Mens promotions, raise such imaginations, as wherein their minds make Dreames▪ As a Dream when one awaketh, so, O Lord, when thou awakest, thou shalt despise their Image, Psal. 3. 20. Comparat Pro­pheta omnem mundi splend [...] ­rem som [...]io quo ali [...]uando fru­st [...]a se quis ob­le [...]at—De rebus cadu­cis somnians mag a concipit. Mollerus upon the place concludeth, That wicked mens earthly dignities, are but as idle Dreames, their splended braveries, but lucid phantasies, &c. Thus we find the Apostle expressing Agrip­pas pomp: He came [...] Act. 25. [...]3. His glittering glory was but as a Dreaming phantasie, vain and vanishing, though much mind pleasing, &c.

2. Dreames upon and about better things. Luther observing some, saies, Somniant se habere singula­rem sanctita­tem modestiam patientiam & Doctrinam—Somniant se, &c. Luther. 5. [...]classis. cap. 8. De [...]anaticis. They imagine spiritu­all Immunities, singular excellencies, that they have marvellous abilities in [Page] [...]ood for God, farre tho [...]e their Bre­thren, which be but Dreames. Their apprehensions of present good, and expectations of good to come, be but Dreames. Now a knowing [...]hristian strives to be above a Dream, to rise unto Re­alitie in Religion, that his hopes of Heavenly felicity, may be more then an imaginary fancy, his apprehensions more then ap­paritions: that though he Dreames in sleep, and sleepes in Dreames, yet awake, he may work and live above Dreames, being in all things, serious, solid, and well setled.

2. Consider Dreames more strict­ly taken, viz. as Divided

  • Into Evil from Satan,
  • And Good from God.

1. For evil Dreames, wherein [Page] the Devil hath his industrious dealing for mens monstruous de­filing and deluding.

  • Such have been, &
  • Such yet may be.

1. By such Diabolicall delu­sions, have severall in daies past been seduced, and drawn upon such actions, as have proved their destructions. Historians re­port of that great P [...]rsian Lege Hero­dot. lib. 7. in Xerxe. De quo etiam A [...]t [...]ba­nus. Quoniam Daemonius in­stinctus est & Graecos clades quaedam (ut vi­detur) missa Divinitus ma­net ego quoque caedo & senten­tiam muto—Alsted. Cronol. 294. Prince Xerxes, how by a delusive Dream he was instigated to go into Greece with his numerous Army, consisting of above 1000000 valiant men, where by a few Greeks, he had a fearfull foil.

1. Such Dreames may endure in our Daies. Let not any think (saies Luther) the Diseas humi­liter sapere sci­ens certo & ve­rissimè Satha­nam non esse mortuum, &c. Devil is now dead, no nor yet asleep: As he that keepeth Israel, so he that hateth [Page] Israel never slumbereth or sleepeth. And while he hates, he is readiest to hurt, and may occasion many harmes by evil Dreames.

Yea, (saies Luther) We are day and Semper sumus obscessi & cir­cumfusi undi­que multis mi­libus Daemonum qui evomunt contra [...]os totum infernum & maxime exerci­tibus nos adori­untur—Luth. loc. Com. Quint. class. cap. 1. De Diab. night beset with Millions of Devils, when we walk abroad, sit at our board, lie on our bed, Legions of Devils are round about, ready to fling whole hell into our hearts.

Now to know and believe our lyableness to such deluding and polluting Dreames, as soon as others in preceding times Multis tempo­ribus somniis falla [...]ibus ho­homines in magnos mittun­tur errores, &c. Aug de cura pro mortuis. cap. 10., may much promote

  • Our needfull Knowledg, &
  • Our usefull Practice.

1. Our Knowledg may be here­by furthered, both concerning Sinne Peccatum in sanctis non so­lum est sed agit, non solum vivit sed vigilat. Luth. loc. 40. and Satan, our foes, and and the friends and fathers of fil­thy Dreames.

[Page]1. A necessary knowledg of sin, may be by this very Meanes,

  • More Generall, &
  • More Speciall.

1. Sin in Generall, men may hereby discerning as concerning them­selves, its certain excellency, close adherency, continuall Peccatum ori­ginale & si non sit peccatum actuale est ta­men peccatum a [...]tuosum Aqui. activity, &c. What is said of mans soul, the same may be said of mans sin; Age does Anima non dormiseit, non seneseit. Scalig. de subtill. not enfeeble it, nor sleep surprize it, but 'tis alway vigorous and vigi­lant, even in the night time it puts forth in evil Dreames: So that by this we may learn the condition of mans sinne, and mans sinfull condition. Did but a sinfull man observe himself, as he is in the time of sleep, and he might soon see his soul through sin Docent Philo­sophi-justum somniare ho­nesta & tran­quilla scelera­tum in honesta & turbulenta in carnalibus & impiis som­nus est cogilati­onum mare, in­auinationum fluctus—Aristo. lib. 1. Ethic. Plutarch. lib. 2. Nic [...]tas in orat. 3. Nazianz. to be as the troubled Sea, whose waters cast up mire and dirt, Esa. 57. 20.

[Page] [...]. Sinn in Speciall, that which some call peccat [...]m in delicijs, a mans delightfull and beloved sin, a mans most prevalent and prae­dominantsinne, to which he is most prone, may hereby ap­pear.

Concerning this are three things considerable.

  • 1. That there is such a sinne.
  • 2. That this sinne may be known. &
  • 3. That its knowledg may be by this Meanes.

1. That such a Principall and Prince▪ like sinne certainly is, thatPsal. 18. 23. Ezek. 7. 16. swayes the Scepter in mans soul, and sits chief in the heart: That saies to every other sinne, as Pha­raoh to Joseph; In the Throne will I Gen. 41. 40. be greater then thou.

2. This chief-ruling sin in man, [Page] may be known. Tis true, this sinne may most subtilly seek to conceal it self: and as is reported of the Persian Kings Apud Persas. Persona Regis sub specie ma­gestatis occuli tur. Just. lib. 1. to be seldome seen in the day. During the day it may suspend its visible acts, and not come into any open view.

3. In the night time, and in the midst of mans sleep may this sin a­rise and run out in his Dreams. That's a mans wel-beloved, which lieth at night betwixt his breasts, Cant. 1. 1 [...]. That's a mans Dalilah-lust, which leaneth upon his lap in his sleep, Judg. 16. 19.

2. Much of Satan in his subtill designes may hereby come to be discovered. Ignorance of the Devils artifice, is not fit for Chri­stians. We are not ignorant of his devices, saies the Apostle, [Page] 2 Cor. 2. 11▪ [ [...] Hanc artem Satanaepluribus explicatam. Vide apud Au­gustinum li­bro. 30. contra Epistolam Par­meniani. cap. primo & secun­do.] His thought▪ works, or the workings he hath in his thoughts, whether men be asleep or awake: Satans subtill injections into the minds of men, as Tertullian renders the Apostles word. 'Tis in the plurall, signifi­ing Satan hath severall of this sort. How divers the Devil▪ devices are, Austin excellently opens, having had experimentall knowledg of many: And that good man Lege Au­gusti. Confessi. lib. 10. cap. 30. a­mong others, does much bemoan what mischief he suffered from Sa­tan in sinfull Dreames.

2. By such knowledg of evil Dreames, things practicall are pro­moted,

  • For repenting of what is past, &
  • For preventing of what may fol­low.

[Page]First, Of such evils past, men through this knowledg are pro­voked to repent, to humble them­selves for these night-sinnes, with which very few are affected, and upon which scarse any reflect, un­less with delight. Indeed, the Recordation of Dreames have sadly distressed some of Gods Saints. What amazements of mind? What terrible troubles of consci­ence have come upon some men by this meanes? there be that can bear witness in the world. Some in their sleep have had a supposed burden, dreaming such a load lay Ex somnio mentem Nebu­chadnezaris fuisse graviter affectam, sed gravtore somnio excussam fuisse recordationem somnii.—Jun. lectiones in Dan. Ʋt si quis somniet se ab aliquo premi. Quod in somni­um Ephialtes appellatur. Fit cum crassus hu­mor in Thorace Vel cerebro ex­istens.—Zan­chius. upon them, as though they strove they could not stirre. And such there are, who after sleep, and when awake, have sorely felt a reall burden, being pressed down with sorrow in the remembrance [Page] of their sinfull Dreames.

Dream-sinnes the most are ig­norant of, and so insensible under, and sorrowless after. Though 'tis certain mens sin­full [...]usts have no allowance from Gods Law in time of sleep. Perhaps some think of the Law of God; What Serbidious Jus civile Scriptum est vigilantibus non dormitantibus, &c. Scevo­la said of the Civil Law: It was not at all written to restrain sleepers but wakers. But both waking and sleeping, man hath his bounds set, which to trans­gress is sinne; even in a foolish thought, Prov▪ 24. 9. Of all which, a right knowledg much helps re­pentance.

Secondly, Against such future Evils, hereby man is moved to arm himself, by the use of Scrip­ture, Meditation, and Prayer. [Page] Luther finding many Multi fanati­ci spiritus me adorti sunt quo­rum alius▪ som­nia alius visio­nes alius reve­lationes jacta­bat. Sed respon­di me non expe­tere ejusmodi—& si o [...]erentur meiis non habi­turum [...]idem.—Et ideo arden­tibus votis pre­catus sum ut daret mihi Deus certum sensum Scripturae—Si enim verbum habeo s [...]io me non facile f [...]ll [...] aut errare pos [...]esed recta via ingredi—Luth. loc. com. [...]ae. classis. fan [...]tick spi­rits (as he termes them) who boa [...]ing of their Dreames, sought to seduce him: This ma [...]e me, (saith he) earnestly pray to God, that he would give me the true understanding of his holy Word, that I might never be drawn away by such dangerous deviations in Dreames.

And did but men, indeed know the dangerous errors and evils of evil Dreames, with holy fear and care would they draw out the day, and lie down at night, lodg­ing themselves in Christ, that Satan may not find them out. Necessary Necessarium est verbum ru­minare & orare sive cum surgi­mus sive cumbi­tum imus, ne nos vacuos & im­paratos hostis inve [...]iat. Luth. primae classis. cap. 23. is it (saies Luther) that whether we rise up, or lie down, we should pray and ruminate upon the Word of God▪ that our ene­my may never find us empty or un­prepared. [Page] And (saies another Ille igitur proprie tranquillus est qui carnem omni corruptionis labe purgavit, mentem supra creaturam omnem elevans, om­nes illi subjicit sensus & vul­tui Domini animam sistens, su­pra virium suarum modum in Deum se semper extendens, &c. Climacus. Gradu. 26. &c. 29. Corn. Lapid. com. in Prov. Sol. cap. 4. Aquin. 22ae. quest. 154. art. 5. pag. 316. Siquidem ut equi jugales recta currere in­structi non deserunt viam dor­miente aurigâ: Ita bruti af­fectus domiti nec in somnis fa­cile recalcitant. Corn. La­pid. com. in Pro. Auctor cat. Graes. cap. 3. v. 29. Author) he that would secure himself from such deceiving Dreames, as are Daemonum ludibria, must be daily subduing his sinfull and sensitive part, purging out pre­sent pollutions, and ele­vating his mind above creature-vanities, stri­ving beyond his own strength to setle his soul in the sight of God, acquainting his soul with the good will of God, that therein he may go right to­wards God, when his body lies asleep in his Bed.

Now a considerable Meanes to incite men to daily diligence in these good duties, is to instruct them in the evil of Dreames; [Page] For who will so soon use the Me­dicine, as he that best knows the Malady.

[...]. Good Dreames, whereof God is the Authour Negat Aristo­toles somnia unquam [...] contra illud Homeri­cum ex [...], &c., ought to be known: For

  • 1. Such have been, &
  • 2. Such may yet be.

1. Dreames Divine have for­merly been, in the minds of men. Calvin Non dubito quin multa som­nia fuerint fa­bulosa—Tamen satis constat quaedam somni­a non fictitia esse—Sicut som­nium calphurniae uxoris Julii Cae­sa [...]is quia ante­quam occidere­tur—ita illa somnia verat—Idem dici potest de Medico Au­gusti qui jusse­rat eum exire è tabernaculo suo quo die pug­natum fuit in pharsalia—Sta­tim capta fue­runt castra Au­gusti. in his Commentaries up­on Daniel, though he grants di­vers Dreames have been so fa­lacious and frivolous, as did evi­dence much of the Devil; yet some Dreames have been so pon­derous and serious, as might signi­fie something of God: And he gives some [...]nstances out of Anti­ent Authors, as the Dream of Ju­lius Caesar's Wife, admonishing her about her Husbands death: [Page] And the Dream of Augustus his Physician, who thereupon com­manded the Emp [...]rour in his bed, to be carried out of his [...]ent, and so escaped the cruell enemies hand. In such Dreames, we may imagine some moving hand of Almighty God. Bu [...] plain proofs we have from holy Scripture of Gods undoubted hand in divers Dreames: Gen 20. 3. Gen. [...]0. 5▪ Gen 4. 7. Judg. 7. 13. [...] King. 3. 5. Dan. [...]. [...]. Dan. 7. 1. Math. 2. 19, &c.

2. Dreames Divine may yet remain. From God may come (yea shall come) good Dreams in these latter times▪ And it shall come to pass in the last daies, I will pour out my Spirit—and your Sonnes shall Dream Dreames—Acts 2. [...]7. That ex­cellent Expositor Paraeus Accipienda sunt somnia non solum metapho­rice de illustri patefactione Dei & Doctrina sa­lutis sub regno Christi sed pro­priè de Divinis somniis est di­ctum quae nunc sanè negligenda non sunt. in his [Page] Commentaries upon Genesis af­firms in that place: Dreames are not only to be taken in a Meta­phoricall sense, for those famous Patefactions under Gospel Ad­ministrations; but also for Dreames properly so taken, wherein God, under the Kingdom of Christ, may make known his mercifull mind unto the sonnes of men. [ [...]] &c. Filij vestri somnia somniabunt. Your sons shall Dream Dreames.

Memorable is that of B. Read the life and death of William Cow­per B. of Gal­loway in Scot­land. Cowper, who in the passages of his life reports a Dream he had from God, guilding him to the place of his publick Ministry most remarkeably: And that the ever liv­ing Lord, who sleepeth not, may thus in these latter times, warn the Souls of his Servants, when their Bodies be [Page] a sleep, none [...] trust (saies he) wil [...] deny the same, &c.

'Tis credibly told, of a Native Turk in London, lately Baptized into the Christian Faith, how by a Dream he was thereunto muchLege Augusti­num lib. Conf. 8. cap. ult. drawn. As Austin had his Tolle-Lege: So he is said to have his Surge Recipe, whence without the receit of the Baptismall Sacrament he could not be satisfied. Others by such Dreams may be incited.

So that to seek a due un­derstanding of Divine Dreams, is an undoubted Duty in Gospel­daies: This will further

  • Profitable Knowledg, &
  • Sutable Practice.

1. Requisite Knowledg may much be promoted by that Com­munion a good man may thus have, both with God and himself, [Page] during the darkest seasons of the night. My reines Renes interi­ora viscera—occultissima de­notant—cor in­telligit, &c. instruct me in the night seasons, (saies David) Psal. 16. 7. Even in the seasons of the night, the most retired motions of David's mind, the most hidden thoughts of his Nonnulli in­terpretantur quod nocturno tempore multa dedicisse & proficisse Pro­ph [...]ta in agniti­one Dei in fide, &c. Mollerus in locum. heart, did read him, as one calls it, a Curtein Lecture; by which he learned much of himself to­wards God, and much of God towards himself; his Faith, his Love, and such like Graces were so comfortably discovered, that he blessed God for it. I will bless the Lord that hath given me coun­sell; my reines also instrust me in the night season. In the time of the night, when good men are a­wake; yea, and when asleep al­so, by these secret waies, they may certainly discern much con­cerning

  • [Page]The God of grace, &
  • The grace of God.

1. Much of God may by this means be manifest, as not only the cer­tainty of his being, that he is, but the transcendancy of his being; what and how great he is, in his power, prudence, providence, vigilance, omniscience, goodness, &c. are even from these admirable actings evident. Aristotle that great Philosopher Et quamquam Aristot [...]les li­benter re [...]iceret omnem semsum Divinitat [...]s ut fuit malig [...]us in hac parte cum scilic [...]t ad captum ing [...]nii vellet D [...]i na­turam ex [...]gere ut omnem rape­ret a [...] ac [...]u [...]e [...] suum—Nega­vit somnia esse Divina—Con­cessit tame [...] D [...] ­vination [...] esse in qui [...]us [...]am somniis. Calv., that he might lift up humane Nature, and dash down all Notions of Deity, deny­ed any Dreames to be Divine; yet to some Dreames he would grant Divination, which may soon seem a contradiction. A free concession to, and due cog­nition of Divine Dreames, may draw out much of the manifold Knowledg of God.

[Page]2. Much of Gods sanctifying grace in men, may through this be known: That near access, and close converse, that ready re­course, and refreshing intercourse which certainly sometims is be­tween a glorious God and a graci­ous soul, in time of sleep, does testifie much in man of the grace of God. This discovers Gods grace in its true Impress, Progress, Efficiency, Proficiency. Plu­tarch Quomodo quis suos in virtute profectus sentire possit inter alia signa dat som­nium si quis non turpia sed: ho­nesta somniet. sets down this as a manifest sign of mans stature in Virtue; that his Dreames are not of filthy, but of honest things. So that as to necessary Knowledg, there is good use of a due understanding of Divine Dreames.

2. As to the effectual further­ance of pious Practice, the same is also of singular use.

[Page]This puts on to divers good Duties, as relating to Dreames Divine:

  • For procuring and encreasing them, &
  • For improving and pursuing them.

1. To procure and encrease good Dreames: A knowing Christian herein, becomes diligent here­upon, and takes paines in Prayer, preparing all day for Gods visits in the night. Psal. 17. [...], 2, 3. Hear O Lord, and attend to my Prayer.—Th [...]u hast visited me in the night, thou hast proved my heart, and shalt find nothing. That is (saies Mollerus) Nocte me pro­basti sed non deprehend sti a [...]i uam perfi­diam u [...]falla­ciam in me sed recte & sircere egi cum in cae­teris tum in hac causa. nothing perfidious, fallacious, but as at other seasons, and in o­ther cases, so in this; my soul hath sincerely complyed with God, and readily met him in the visits of [Page] the night: And for this purpose the Prophet was full of Prayer in the day. Luther Semper rogas­se Dominum ne mihi vel somnia vel visiones mitteret, pactum feci cum Domi­no Deo meo ne vel visiones vel somnia mihi mittat. Luther. reports, that he on the other side, often prayed to God, that God would not speak any thing to him in Dreames: And that he covenanted with God, that in Dreames God would not send to him any of his mind, &c.

But thus might this good man do, upon a double occasion:

  • To oppose the waies of men, &
  • To advance the Word of God.

1. To oppose the practice ofConsule Luthe­rum 5ae class. cap. 8. De H [...] ­reticorum & Fanaticorum versutia astu, virulentia vio­lentia & ca­lumniis maliti­aque memen­dabili, &c. men, who in his daies pretended divers things from God in Dreams full of fallacies and falsities; therein many were Deluders, and many deluded; with which he was much affected, and oft sore assaulted.

2. To advance the Praescripts of [Page] God in his written word, I am content (saies Luther) that I Contentus sum hoc dono, quod habeo Scriptu­ram sanctam quae abunde do­cet & suppedi­tat omnia quae. Sunt necessa­ria cum ad hanc tum ad futurum vitam have the holy Scripture, which teaches me so abundantly and evidently, that herein I acquiesce. And to Gods setled Word (saies Huic credo & acquiesco ac certus sum me non p [...]s [...]e salli. Luth. Torn. 4. in Genesin. he) while I adhere, I am certain not to be decei­ved, &c. But if they be indeed Dreames from God, they sute un­to his Word, and will not deceive us. And therefore for such Dreames, we ought to pray, and to prepare good Matter for them, to implore the Spirit poured out, to ponder Scripture; to hide Gods Word in our hearts; to store up the Precepts and precious Promises thereof in our remem­bring minds; and with the word to make meet Animadversions up­on Gods marvellous works; to hearken to God, and to walk [Page] with God while we are awake, that he may the more meet us in out sleep. And why might not the minds of men move and be moved in holy and heavenly, as well as in idle and foolish Dreames, were diligence used, and duties discharged? I doubt not but divers of Gods dear Atque saepe per somnium me pu­t [...] esse in infer­no & saepe in Caelo Luth. Saints in these secret workings of their sanctified souls, have many sweet caelestial sights, when the eyes of their bodies be close shut upon their sleeping beds, and see not.

2. To improve and pursue such Dreames is a duty. As soon as we are up, to begin good deeds in the day, that may occomplish the good God gave in the night. 'Tis said of Jonah his Guord, that God made to spring in the night, [Page] That when the morning arose, a worm smote the Guord, and it wither­ed. When we have a sweet Dream, and come out of a good sleep in the night, there is (saies an Author Este Daemonibus unus qui praecursor dicitur qui nos è bono somno surgen­tes protinus excipit & nostrum cogita­tum inquinare nititur—Da Domine primitias dici tuae—Ab ipso matutino tempore cursum meum totius dici scio—Cave ne pullulant vanae & in­utiles cogitationes—Si munda corde astiterimus ante Deum—Orantes oc­culum cordis nostri in ipsum dirig [...]re & adhuc videre invisibilem mente non corpore—Magnus ille Joannes Abbas apud Ruffinum in vi [...]is Patr. cap. 1. haec suis dabat documenta.) one a­mong the evil Spirits that out-runnes the rest, and in the morn­ing, as soon as we a­wake, endeavours to dash good thoughts, to divert and to de­file, to prevent all pious practises and prosecutions, But much care is required in this case: We ought not only to pre­serve, but to improve good Dreames, by a practicall putting forward of our selves in holy Du­ties, all the daies of our lives.

Now a right knowledg of these [Page] Dreames, may much incite to such pious practises, and profit Gods people, both asleep and a­wake. Excuse me then, Gentle Reader, for the attaining these Ends I have intended this Trea­tise, and trust it may thereto be a good Means, through Gods Mercy. Amen, Amen.

Ph. Goodwin.

A SYNOPSIS OR Compendium Of the Main Integrall Parts: OR A Table Demonstratory▪ Proposing the Principal TEXTS and TRUTHS contained in this TREATISE.

PART I. Of Mens Dreames more Ge­nerall.

Psal. 126. 1.‘We were like to men that Dream.’
  • [Page]1. Mens Dreames, how meetly they may be called Mysteries p. 2
  • 2. Men the most receptible Subjects of Dreames p. 4
  • 3. Mans Reason variously acting in Dreames, how in some less evi­dent, and in some more excel­lent p. 5
  • 4. Why so many Dreames pass from men that are not sensibly discern­ed p. 6
  • 5. How only in this Life men are lyable to Dreames in sleep p. 7
  • 6. How after Death, though men may be said to sleep, yet they Dream not p. 8
  • 7. How mens Dreames are generally discribed, and severally divided p. 10
  • 8. What faculties of mans soul are in Dreames principally imployed p. 11
  • 9. How in mens Dreames Things have no reall being, but are only imagi­nary p. 7.
  • 10. How mens Dreames lie in their [Page] thoughts, and how their thoughts are concerned in Dreames p. 11
  • 11. Dreames natural and supernatural how distinguished p. 13
  • 12. How God and the Devil have their certain hand in severall Dreames p. 14
  • 13. How the excellency of mans soul is raised by Dreames, in what, and above whom p. 15
  • 14. Persons concerned to seek the knowledg of Dreames p. 18
  • 15. Reasons declared why the know­ledg of Dreames is to be sought p. 21

PART II. Of False and Deluding Dreames.

Zach. 10. 2.‘And they told False Dreames.’
  • [Page]1. The Meanes producing false Dreams, how divers p. 28
  • 2. The divers times in which false Dreames have been produced p. 29
  • 3. How those that deny Dreames false are confuted p. 34
  • 4. How false Dreames from true are discovered by their causes p. 40
  • 5. How also made manifest by their Effects p. 41
  • 6. How false Dreames from the Devil, and those from mens corruptions are Distinguished p. 42
  • 7. How subtilly Satan may suggest Scripture in his soul-deceiving Dreames p. 43
  • 8. Mans perils of believing delusive Dreames, how many waies p. 44
  • 9. Mans proneness to be by Dreames deluded, how great p. 48
  • 10. The Properties of the Devil, fitting him to further false Dreames p. 49
  • 11. The Evils of false Dreames, how [Page] divers and most dreadfull p. 55
  • 12. Whether the Devil can in Dreames foretell things to come p. 62
  • 13. Whether in our times there be any danger of deluding Christians by false Dreames p. 70
  • 14. The false Dreames of two sorts that Christians must seek to prevent p. 79
  • 15. The Meanes of two sorts by which all false Dreames may be pre­vented. p. 74

PART III. Of Filthy and defiling Dreames.

Jude 8.‘These filthy Dreamers defile the flesh.’
  • 1. What those Dreamers are who do de­file the flesh, expounded p. 92
  • [Page]2. What that flesh is which these Dreamers do defile, explained p. 98
  • 3. What that defiling the flesh is here intended p. 99
  • 4. Though Dreames defiling do de­lude, yet how deluding and defiling Dreames do differ p. 87
  • 5. Defiling Dreames in a double sense considered p. 91
  • 6. What a certain hand Satan severall waies hath in Dreames that do de­file p. 96
  • 7. What of man by Dreames filthy is defiled p. 99
  • 8. What mens defiling themselves by filthy Dreames doth imply p. 104
  • 9. How much of mens misery de­filing Dreames doth comprize p. 107
  • 10. How much Satans knowledg and diligence in mens silthy Dreames are discovered p. 110
  • 11. What we are to believe, De Incu­bis & Succubis (as relating to filthy Dreames) declared p. 114
  • 12. What we are to learn concerning God, mens defiling Dreames con­sidered [Page] p. 116
  • 13. What duties men for the most part neglect for the hinderance of fil­thy Dreames p. 118
  • 14. How much many men sinfully do, whereby Dreames filthy are fur­thered p. 119
  • 15. How men, good and bad, are both subject to defiling Dreames p. 121
  • 16. How wicked men are the most proper subjects of Dreames that do defile p. 122
  • 17. Why Satan with such Dreames assaults the servants of God p. 125
  • 18. What harmes filthy Dreames in sleeping men do against things that are good p. 127
  • 19. What harmes th [...]se Dreames de­filing do, as towards things that are evil p. 129
  • 20. What meanes ought to be used for prevention of defiling Dreames p. 133
  • 21. What duties are to be performed, when such defiling Dreames have been prevented p. 144

PART IV. Of Idle and Vain Dreames.

Eccl. 5. 7.‘In the multitude of Dreames are divers Vanities: but fear thou God.’
  • 1. How divers Dreames are said to be Vain p. 154
  • 2. How Vain Dreames are said to be divers p. 156
  • 3. What a multitude of men have vain Dreames p. 158
  • 4. What a multitude of va Dreames are in some men p. 160
  • 5. How it appeareth that vain Dreames are evil, and certainly sin­full p. 165
  • 6. How vain Dreames are such [Page] sinnes to which each man is subject p. 691
  • 7. That against these sinfull evils of vain Dreames men may be defend­ed p. 117
  • 8. That meanes each man must use for his defence against the evil of vain Dreames p. 174
  • 9. How against the divers vanites in Dreames, there be divers meanes meet to be used p. 176
  • 10. How the true fear of God is the best meanes to Anti­dote mens minds against vain Dreames p. 179
  • 11. What the fear of God is, and what it does, whereby from vain Dreams Christians are secured p. 180
  • 12. Arguments disswasive from the vanities of Dreames prevail­ing without this fear of God p. 184
  • 13. Arguments perswasive to the fear of God, preventing Dreames of va­nity p. 188
  • 14. Adjuments or helps to incite and preserve such a fear of God as is good against vain Dreames p. 192
  • [Page]15. Whether good men may not have vain Dreames, though they do fear God p. 195

PART V. Of Troublesome and Affrighting Dreames.

Job 7. 14.‘Then thou Skarest me with Dreames.’
  • 1. What were the Dreames wherewith God skared Job p. 200
  • 2. What were the Times when with Dreames Job was skared p. 203
  • 3. What this skaring Job by Dreames did contain p. 205
  • 4. How evils, both of sinne and punishment are the ordinary matters of troublesome Dreames p. 201
  • 5. How both God and the Devil are usually movers in Dreames trouble­some p. 202
  • 6. How troubling Dreames from God, [Page] and those from the Devil are dif­ferenced and discerned p. 204
  • 7. How Dreames that affright and trouble, may be very many in very good men p. 207
  • 8. Whether men very wicked, may not be very free from affrighting Dreams p. 216
  • 9. The sad effects of Dreames affright­ing to men both awake and asleepe p. 223
  • 10. The severall Reasons why God af­frights good men in time of their sleep p. 218
  • 11. The divers Causes why God in time of sleep, may affright men that are wicked p. 219
  • 12. That Divine discoveries of Gods glorious Majesty may make to men in sleep, dismaying and affrighting Dreames p. 208
  • 13. That Dreames properly dismay­ing, and frequently affrighting, are the effects of Gods appearing dis­pleasure p. 221
  • 14. Causes for which Skaring Dreames are let into men, to be avoided and shunned p. 225
  • [Page]15. Courses by which Skaring Dreames may be kept out from men, to be observed and used p. 230
  • 16. Mens Duties, when with Dreames dreadfull, they are surprized and op­pressed p. 233
  • 17. Mens Duties, when from dread­full Dreames they are secured and preserved p. 236
  • 18. God Mercies, how great to men in prevention of Dreames dismaying, manifested p. 242

PART VI. Of admonishing and Instructing Dreames, viz. from God.

Mat. 2. 12.‘And they being warned of God in a Dream, that they should not return to Herod, departed into their own Country another way.’
  • [Page]1. Who the persons were to whom God thus appeared in a Dreame described p. 248
  • 2. What considerable Matter in this Dream from God to those Men was contained p. 252
  • 3. In what a remarkeable man­ner these Men received this Dream set from God, declared p. 255
  • 4. What admirable Effects this Dream fom God divers waies produced p. 257
  • 5. The divers Ages of the world, through which Divine Dreames have been into Men immitted p. 262
  • 6. How farre Divine Dreames in this latter Age of the world, may yet be expected p. 268
  • [Page]7. How God, in discovery of his mind by Dreames, hath used divers waies and Meanes p. 271
  • 8. How Sanctified Men are the most usuall Subjects into which God sends good Dreames p. 275
  • 9. How into the mindes of sin­full Men, such Dreames are sometimes sent of God p. 277
  • 10. Reasons why into wicked mens minds good Dreames have been from God formerly transmitted p. 279
  • 11. Reasons why into the minds of sanctified men, good Dreames from God have been frequently conveyed p. 281
  • 12. The Causes why good Dreames from God should be by all earnestly desired p. 285
  • 13. The Meanes how from God good Dreames may to men be comfort­ably procured p. 294
  • [Page]14. The Reasons why Dreames from God in good men are now found so few, plainly declared p. 311
  • 15. How the least workings from God, in a way of good Dreames, ought not to be despised p. 313
  • 16. What of some Dreames we are not to regard, and yet wherein good Dreames are to be observed p. 321
  • 17. How farre before good Dreames the Light and Guidance of the Gospel is to be prefered p. 324
  • 18. How false Visions and Reve­lations from good Dreames are to be discovered p. 326
  • 19. What heavenly Joys in holy Dreames may certainly be obtained p. 328
  • 20. How true Joys in Divine Dreames, from false joys in delu­sive Dreames may be discerned p. 330
  • [Page]21. Divers Objections against this Discourse of Divine Dreames fully answered p. 306
JErem. 23. 32.

Behold, I am against the Pro­phets that prophesie false Dreames, saith the Lord, and do tell them, causing my people to erre by their lies, &c.

Judg. 7. 15.

And it was so when Gidèon heard the telling of the Dream, and the inter­pretation thereof, that he worshipped, and said to the host of Israel, Arise, for the Lord is with us, &c.

Gen. 41. 15, 16.

And Pharaoh said to Joseph, I have dreamed a Dream, and there is none that can interpret it; I have heard say, that thou caust understand a Dream to interpret it: And Joseph answered Pharaoh, it is not in me; God shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace, &c.

Dan. 7. 1.

In the first year of Beltasha­zar King of Babylon, Daniel had a Dream, and Visions of his head upon his bed: Then he wrote down the Dream, and told the summe of the matter.

Psal. 4. 4.

Stand in awe and sinne not, com­mune with your own hearts upon your beds, and be still.

Psal. 63 7.

I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate upon thee in the night watches, &c.


FOr the rectifying of the Errata's in the main Body of the Book, I referre thee to the end thereof, entreating thy cur­tesie.

In other additional parts, some other accidental faults thou maiest find, which when thou meetest, correct with a patient Pen.


In the Postscript, For the Gospel of Gods great Name, Read The Glory of his great Name. In the Epistle, for sinnes certain Excellency, Read its certain Existency. Besides some other smaller mistakes, all which thou art desired with Christian patience to pardon.

P. G.
Jan. 20. 1657.

THE MYSTERY OF DREAMES Historically Discoursed,

1. Of Mens DREAMES more Generall.

PSAL. 126. 1.We were like to men that Dream. Iamblicus quis fuit, & quando floruit—Vide Alstedium in Thesauro Chro­nologiae de Phi­losophis. p. 466.

I Amblicus, a Learned Phi­losopher, writing a Book De Mysteriis, hath excel­lently Multa de somniis Iambli­cus dixit, quae mihi videntur verba, non Platonici Philosophi, sed Divinissimi Christiani, &c. Zanchins. Discoursed of Dreames, as one kind of those occult things, wherein lieth much of a Mystery.

[Mysterium] in Latin, as by Illyricús, [Page 2] Polanus, and other good Authors is ob­served, may be fitly derived from a A Graeco ver­bo [...] dedu­citur unde habent illa no­mina [...] pro re secreta & acarna. Illyr. cl. Scrip. Res occultae vel arcanae vocan­tur Mysteria Mysterium Graecis signifi­cat rei arcanae signum Parae­us Com. in 1 Cor. cap. 2. & ve. 7. Polan. Sym. Theol. l. 5. c. 10. Greek word, which well signifies a clo­sed Secret. Mysteries or Secrets are certainly considerable in Dreames. Da­niel discoursing to King Nebuchadnez­zer about the Dream he had from God upon his Bed, saies to him: He that re­vealeth secrets, &c. or Mysteries, as the Septuagint there rendreth it. These Mysticall and covered secrets. Somnium est figuris tectum & sine Scriptu­rali interpreta­tione intelligi non potest. Au­gust. Tom. 3. de spiritu & ani­ma cap. 5. & cap. 25. Somnium etsi sit visum Divi­nitus dormienti ostensum, tamen ita tectum & in volucris occul­tum ut sine in­terpretatione per spiritum Dei in verbo non est intelligendum. Zanc. Mi­scel. Tom. 4. De somniis. Austin, Zanchy, and some others considering, have concluded, they cannot be well un­derstood but by Gods Spirit speaking in the Word.

I shall therefore make use of Gods Word as a meet Meanes to a manifest discovery of Dreames-Mystery. And for a due Introduction, this expression of Gods peo­ple in the Prophet is prompt and proper.

We were like to men that Dream.

As touching the people of God in the present place, we may propose

  • Their Condition, &
  • Their Comparison.

1. Their Condition or their com­fortable [Page 3] case, they were brought out of captivity by the Lords own hand. When the Lord turned the captivity of Zion.

2. Their Comparison, They compareTanta est hujus miraculi & mysterii magni­tudo, ut nos initio redderet planè stupentes. Haec res adeo magna, arcana, subita­nea inusitata erat, ut somnian tes videremur. Mollerus in lo or resemble themselves to Dreaming Men: We were like to men that Dreame. That is, in our Delivery there was such a Miracle and Mystery of Mercy (as Mollerus interprets) we knew not what to make of it, but it made us ad­mire; it came upon us so secret and so sudden, that we were at a loss, and knew not which way to look.

We were like to men that Dreame.

Here is in this Likeness or Similitude observable,

  • The Persons, and
  • The Action.

1. The Persons they liken them­selvesHier. Zanch. Tracta. De Divi­natione & variis ejus speciebus. to, are Men: We were like Men.

2. The Action, the Men they were like are considered in, is their Dream­ing; We were like to Men that Dreame. Men we see, are most certainly such Per­sons as Dreaming does concern; and Dreamings we see, are such Actions as most singularly concern Men, We [Page 4] were like Men that Dreame.

The full Discourse from the Text intended will consist of two considerable parts,

  • Explicatory, and
    Zabarella. lib. de facultat. A­nimae. cap. 10, & 12.
  • Applicatory.

In the Explicatory part, what will be unfolded may referre

  • To Men as the Subjects of Dreames, and
  • To Dreames as the Actings of Men.

Men who are the Sensible Subjects in which manifold Dreames are most usu­ally found, we may fitly unfold,

  • In their Rationall part, and
  • In their Vitall estate.

1. In their part Rationall and Intel­lectuall.Ita nostri ac­ceptum ab Apo­stolis servare majores quod hydriae sunt figurata de Limo & faces corpora nostra in medio hydri­arum animae no­strae—fervo­re spiritualis gratiae igniti—Ambros. de Spir. Sanct. lib. 1. & ca. 16. To compound the person of every Man, like Gideons Souldier, he hath his Body as his Earthen Pitcher, and his Soul as his Lamp therein. His Body may be sleeping, when yet his Soul as his Lamp is burning. Yea as there is the Soul in a man, so there is Reason in the Soul, of which we may say, as 'tis said of the vertuous Woman; Her candle goes not out by night. In the dark night into divers Dreames man is led by the light of this candle, 'tis the Soul of man [Page 5] endowed with Reason, and 'tis Reason in man as the endowment of the Soul; in and by which such Dreams are drawn out. Reason is rendrable in a double re­spect,

  • For the Rise and Principle of it,
  • For the Use and Practise of it.

By Mans having the Principle of Rea­son, Ratio sumitur duobus modi [...], 1. Pro vi animae intellectuali—2. Pro virtute animae actuali—Ille intelligens & rationalis est, qui secun­dum rationem cogitat. Basil. sup. Prov. 1. Chrys. sup. Mat. cap. 13. Hom. 31. he becomes capable of, and is Dis­poseable to Dreaming.

But 'tis Mans having the Use of Rea­son, by which he actually Dreames. And indeed 'tis Reason in the Use there­of, as the Ancients conclude, that cau­ses a Man to be accounted Rationall, Intelligent, &c. Intelligent and Ra­tionall he may surely be said, who even in his sleep hath a ready Use of Reason.

The Sleeping Man hath indeed some Dreames wherein Reason acts irregular­ly, intricately, inconsistently, fluctua­ting and roving up and down, that things hang (as we say) like ropes of sand, yet certain in such blurr'd Books some Rea­son may be read, and some foot-steps thereof found. But in divers Dreames 'tis more discernable, Ut cum in somniis quis me­tra comp [...]nit, lo­cum aliquem Scripturae consi­derat & intelli­git, aliquod ar­gumentum dis­solvit, &c. quae quidem sine ope­ratione rationis vel intellectus fieri non possunt. Zanch. Tract. de Divinat. Reason acts more regularly, and manages matters more [Page 6] methodically, so that sometimes Men may finde as effectuall use of Reason in their sleep as when wide awake.

Whence this may remain a Maxime Homo quâ ani­malis somnian­do dormit & qua rationalis, dormiendo som­niat. Somnium non semper sed sae­piùs fit vi partis intellectivae & cum operatione rationis—Hier. Zanch. de Di­vinatione per insomnia. Tract. Hominibus non­nullis nulla som­nia in somnis objiciuntur, Aristot. lib. de somno, & 4. de hist. anim. c. 10. among us,

  • That Man as an Animal creature in Dreaming sleepes:
  • And man as a Rational creature in sleeping Dreames.

Dreames are applicable to Man as Man and so to every Man. Though the the Philosopher affirms, that some men meet with no such motions of their mindes in sleepe, but sleepe without any Dreames of any way or kinde. But common experience may much confute. True, some men may not animadvert, discerne or retaine in their memories such movings of their mindes, yet that does not evidence that they are not. Many a Dreame may possibly pass from a person that he perceives not, through a two-fold cause:

  • Its Swiftness, and
  • His Slowness.

1. The Dreame is swift and goes away with a quick foot, or as upon the wing rather. The wicked shall fly [Page 7] away as a Dreame, Job 20. 8. The An­cients Anti qui som­nium. Deum fin­gebant volati­lem & alitem, &c. Bold. hence phancied, that a Dreame had wings like a Bird of the aire. It may be so considered, because of it's celerity and sudden passage through which it is not perceived.

2. The Man is slow, dull and heavy about reflect acts. Often even in a mans waking-time, the minde works, yet it's work is not minded. A man does not think what he thinks: no marvell then if in sleeping-time the minde looks little back upon its own business, but much overlooks its own work, so that much is done that is not seen, much in Dreames transacted that is not observed. However man remains the subject of Dreames.

2. Man in the condition of this life Postquàm de somno dictum est agitur de somniis, quia fi­unt in somno: & non nisi dor­mientibus ad­veniunt. Magir. Physio. li. 6. ca. 14▪ &c. Satis est nos no­visse quod sit somnus in quo fit insomnium, & sine quo insomnium esse non potest. Zanch. de Divi. is likewise considerable as of Dreames the most sutable subject, The season we know of Dreames is during the time of sleep: now the time of sleep is in the time of this life; after this terme of life there is no true sleep

  • Either to Soul
  • Or Body.

[Page 8]1. The Soul sleeps not, though soAlsted. Chronol. Haeres. 28. pag. 380. some Hereticks have asserted; viz. That seperated Souls are cast into a dead sleep, not to be awakened till the time the generall Resurrection: but such heterodoxe Doctrine hath long since been beaten down by standing Truth, plain Scriptures determining two dwel­lingDuae habitatio­nes sunt, una in igne aeterno, al­tera in regno ae­terno. Aug. de verbis Apostoli, Serm. 18. Post exitum a corpore statim justorum animae in Paradisum ab Angelis du­cuntur. Justin. Martyr. quaest. 75. places;

  • The Paradise of Heaven, and
  • The Prison of Hell.

Into one of which all Souls (sayes Au­stin) as soon as severed from their Bo­dies, are carried by Angels or Devils to dwell in everlasting weale or woe, and indeed the very Scriptures them­selves say so much: See Dan. 12. 2. Matth. 25. 46. Joh. 5. 29. Luk. 23. 43. Luk. 16. 21, 22. 2 Cor. 5. 1, 2. 1 Pet. 3. 19. Rev. 20. 13, &c.

2. The Body sleeps not in any Phy­sicall or Philosophicall sense. The Body bereaved of the Soul, and lying dead in the Grave, is said to be as asleep in theVid. Lorin. in Acts 7. 55. bed, Hence burying places have been called sleeping places: but this is onely Sleep in a Tropicall and Metaphoricall sense. There be no Dreames in this [Page 9] sleep, neither do these men thus asleepAnima absolvi­tur, corpus resol­vitur, quae absol­vitur gaudet, quod resolvitur nihil sentit. Ambr. de bono mortis. Jacet dormien­tis corpus ut m [...]rtui, &c. Cice. de divin. lib. 1. &c. Dormire per me­taphoram Mori significat, quia somnus est mor­tis imago. Illyr. cla. Script. Ex hoc loco non colligitur ani­mas corpore so­lutas carere om­ni sensu: sed non in alio seculo sentire, sicut in ha [...] vita. Vide Moller. in loc. ever dreame. Dreaming is during the time that the reasonable Soul resides and abides in the living Body. The Bo­dy of man in sleep, as a Heathen observes, it lies as if it were fallen down by death, but the Soul is so active therein, as evi­dences the life thereof. And Dream­ing 'tis one of those life-evidencing acts. Though sleep be a plain Image of death, yet Dreames in sleep are a clear Index of life. Men while alive are the Centers of Dreames, and Dreames are the signes of men alive. There is no remem­brance of thee in death, saies David to God, Psal. 6. 5. That is, A man indeed dead, hath no commemorative thoughts of God or any other object, to wit in that way or after that manner like to men alive in the world, as Mollerus well interprets.

'Tis living men who do commemo­rate, meditate, excogitate matters in their minds both awake and asleep. Even sleeping their minds are in motion which we call Dreames.

This casts me upon the next thing to be noted, viz.

[Page 10] Secondly, The Actings or Dreames actually considered in themselves what they are found to be, are discernable by.

  • Their generall Descriptions, and
  • Their generall Divisions.
    Conciliat. Phi­losoph. Goclenii De Natura Som. nii.

1. Dreames in a more generall way and according to their common Nature considered, may be thus described.

Dreames are the agitations, the e­gressions or Sallyings out of the Soul in thoughts of the mind, while the Body lyeth bound by sleep in the bed. A Dreame indefinitely and at large is the transacting of the reasonable Soul in the sleeping Body, through the coassisting help of those admirable Faculties.

  • Somnium est quaedam imago in cerebro obver­sans quam phan­tasia à memoria eductam agitat Phil. l. de anima Movet phantasia in somniis inspi­ciendo praesen­tia: movet me­moria respicien­do, praeterita.
    The Phantasie, and
  • The Memory.

Both which Faculties are found most active in the season of sleep; For in sleep the outward Senses as Hearing, Seeing, &c. being bound from their or­ganicall and extrinsecall exercises and ordinary conveyances. The inward Senses and Powers of the Soul as the Phantasie and Memory, are at the more liberty and freedome from such externall [Page 11] attendances, and so being at better lei­sure, they within themselves fall to re­flectings,Somnium est phantasma quod a phantasia per sanguinem ad cor delatum a sensu communi in somno recipi­tur▪ Zanch. Tra. de Divinat. to new forming and erecting new frames of things that are vented in Dreames. The Phantasie and the Me­mory are the Souls working▪ Shops wherein strange things be wrought, when the Soul (as I may say) goes not abroad, but stayes at home and works within it self, strange things it does wch be drawn out in dreames. So we see how Dreames be in generall described.

Secondly, In generall, Dreames may be variously divided.

  • As into their Parts.
  • And into their Sorts.
    Somniorum quot sunt genera. Zanch. ibid.

1. The Parts that commonly consti­tute a Dreame whereof it is compound­ed and of which it is compacted or made up, are mainly these two things.

  • An Apparition to the Thoughts.
  • And a Dilation of the Thoughts.

1. In a Dreame there is somewhat ap­pearesDan. 4. 10. Nemo dormiens solem intuetur, &c. quae putat se videre, figmenta sunt. Augustin. de civ. Dei. l. 10. cap. 18. to the thoughts. A dreaming Man (sayes Austin) he thinks he sees the Sun, though the Sun he sees not. As there may appeare some things to our eyes, as Armies in the air, fighting-men, [Page 12] and flying-Horses which are no realities, only apparitions. So to a man in a Dream, such things & persons appear but they are no realities, only fictions in his fancy. Philo observes, that some awakeQui vigilant quantum ad in­certam percepti­onem attinet, ni­hil a dormienti­bus differunt seipsos fallendo dum se putant rerum naturas clare perspi [...]r [...], &c. Philo. de Joseph. are like to men asleep, while they think they perceive such things, do but deceive themselves, taking the signs of things, for the natures of things, meer Shadows for Substance. In a Dream are thoughts of things, not the things thought.

Secondly, In a Dreame the thoughts dilate, expand, or spread themselves upon things that so appear. Therein is not only an Intension, but an Extension of the mind, the Imaginations are not on­ly set on, but drawn out, doubling them over and over. Daniel tells Ne­buchadnezzar as touching his Dreame, As for thee O King thoughts came into thy mind upon thy Bed, what should come to pass hereafter. [Thoughts] in the plu­rall. Theodoret expounding the place Cogitab [...]s an es­ses victurus s [...]mper, cogitab [...]s an vero humanae naturae lege mo­riturus statim. Th [...]od. in Dan. addes, Thou didst think whether thou shouldst alwaies live, thou dist think whether thou shouldst soon die, thy thoughts therof did beat about this way and that. Thus in a Dreame, thoughts as [Page 13] they have their Representation so their Expatiation: as a manifestation to, so a multiplication of the Thoughts;Quale fuerit somnium non exprinnt, nisi effectu quod in eo multa passa, multis territa fuit. Paraeu [...] in locum. Thoughts many in one Dreame I have suffered (saies Pilats Wife) [many things in a Dreame. [Many things] that is, many thoughts have pressed in and oppressed my mind. Her Dreame was a­bout one and the same Person, but there­in she had many thoughts about that Man and Matter. We see then Dreams are the thought-works of the waking mind, in the sleeping-man.

2. See the sorts of Dreames that be especially these two.

  • Some Naturall, and
    Naturalia som­ [...]a quando [...]iant & quomodo di­vidantur. Vide Zanch. de Divi. Tractat. Aquinas 22ae Quaest. 95. Art. 6
  • Some Supernaturall.

1. Naturall Dreames are such thoughts in sleep as the mind emits or sends out by its own intrinsecall power, the proper Product of mans own head and heart. To a mans personall case and condition▪ they are so suitable, that we may be certain they proceed from the same principle.

2. Supernaturall Dreames are suchAristot. de Div. ex insom. cap. 1. thoughts in sleep as are immitted or sent into the mind through some extrinsecall [Page 14] principle, And though they come pri­marilyCausae somnio­rum aliae sunt extrinsecae, aliae intrinsecae. Zanch. Tract. de Div. from a principle without, yet the mind concurres with what is occasi­onally cast in and becomes conformably active thereupon. Now these Dreames ab extra, they are of a double Kind, as comming from a double and deeply dif­fering Cause.

  • Diabolicall, and
    [...]. Polan. Syntag. Theol. lib. 5. cap. 30.
  • Theologicall.

Bad Dreames wherein the Devil works, and

Good Dreames wherein God speaks.

Ita Plato. li. 1. de Legibus, Test. Clemens Alex­andrinus stro­matum, lib. 5. & Danaeus. The Manichees and Marcionits took up an opinion (as reputed out of Plato) that there were two co-eternall Princi­ples the one Good and the other Evil, say­ing that all good workings towards men were from the good Principle. And all evill workings men ward were from the evill Principle. As they managed theAug. lib. de Hae­res. cap. 46. Matter they were in a gross errour as Austin and others evidence.

However this is a Truth, there are two supream Principles.

One Good, namely God, and

Another Evil, to wit the Devil.

From God are all good works to­wards [Page 15] men and from the Divel are allMala non pro­veniunt a Deo, quia bonus est nec bona a dia­b [...]lo quia malus est. Vid. Aug. li. 4. contra Julia. evill workings men-ward both awake and asleep. And the Truth of both which may appear in point of Dreames that be both good and evill Works. Good Dreames are Gods good workings in mens sleepings. And bad Dreames be the evill workings of the Divel in sleep­ing men.

And thus is finished the words of the Text in their Explicatory part, wherein men have been unfolded as referring to Dreames, and Dreames have been un­folded as referring to men. We were like to men that Dreame. I pass to the Applicatory part wherein will be endea­vours to promote.

  • Man in his Dignity, and
  • The Duty of Man.

1. This may set up man in his Dig­nity, Dum corpus vi­gilat, videt au­dit—Deus ideò a corpore humano vigilante simili­tudinem in se trahat—Corporis excel­lentiam demon­strat. Greg. Moral▪ lib. 32. Sect. 13. and exalt his Soul in its surpassing Excellency.

  • Above the Body in himself, and
  • Above the Spirit of Beasts.

1. Above mans body. The Body of man is very beautifull as in its Being, so it may be admirable in its Workings; to wit, while man is awak: but when [Page 16] asleep then mens Bodies are like Davids Dum animal dormit, exterio­res sensus ita sunt ligati ut ni­hil sentiunt, ocu­lus non videat, aures non audi­ant. Hier. Zanc. Tact de Divin. Laborare dici­tur homo non tam corporis quàm animae re­spectu quia ani­ma est laborans, quandò corpus quiescit, & la­borando, anima magis laborat quam corpus. Cornel. a Lap. Com. Prov. Idols, Psal. 115. 5, 6, 7. They have mouthes but they speak not, eyes have they but they see not, they have ears but they hear not, Noses have they but they smell not, hands have they but they han­dle not; feet have they but they walk not. A sleeping Man, suppose his body rises out of his bed, yet 'tis like Lazarus ri­sing out of his grave, John 11. 44. And he came forth bound hand and foot with grave-cloaths, and his face bound about with a Napkin. All parts of the body are bound by sleep from their or­dinary orderly acts. But still the soul is at liberty, no fetters of sleep be found upon any of its faculties, but 'tis free apt and able to act and transact severall things in considerable Dreames.

When the body is most still and lying at rest in the bed, the soul is most stirring and laborious in business, and this its ever waking activity, is its admirable excellency, honour and dignity.

2. Above the spirit of Bruits. Bruits if in sleep they do dreame, yet 'tis in a way low and like them­selves.

[Page 17]Men in Dreames transcend, beingInter homines miracula sunt, majus autem miraculum est ipse homo. Aug. de Civ. Dei. li. 10. ca. 12. Qua homines sumus, cum dor­mimus, somnia­mus mirabilia. Zanch. de po­ten. animae. li. 2. ca. 3. Thess. 1. Homines plus quam caeteras animantes som­niare dicendum: 1. Quiailli mag­na ex parte [...]e­nuiores halitus in cerebrum mittunt. 2. Et ad operandum promp [...]res & acutiores inter­nos sensus ha­bent. Aristot. de Hist. Animal. l. 4. c: 10. above Bruits, in these acts most admi­rable: Among men there is no such marvellous Miracle as Man himself, sayes Austin. The very Body of Man is a Miracle marvellous, but much more his Soul. I am fearfully and won­derfully made, marvellous are thy work [...]; and that my soul knows right well, sayes David, Psal. 139. 14. He that is such a work of wonder, may well be a wonder­worker. Take him not only when a­wake, but even in his sleep, his night­works are wonderfull: His very Dreames are filled with marvels: even they are such as render Man rare, and may with admiration raise him into the highest rank of visible creatures. 'Tis true, this redounds to his blemish, this reflects up­on man with the greater shame when herein he sinnes, as will hereafter be seen: However this is his honour; Man in Dreames is able to manage that good no other creatures can. The Philosopher who grants, that as Men, so Bruits may dreame, yet determins; that Men in Dreamings as they are more frequent, so more excellent, to such acts more [Page 18] prompt and therein more acute.

The Soul of Man excels as concer­ing Dreames in a double Act,

  • Direct, and
  • Reflect.

1. Direct: The Soul of man in Dreames can move forward and mount upward beyond the abilities of any beast: Who knows the spirit of a man Si enim connexa corpori extra corpus vitam agit: corpore in lectulo cubante ac velut in mor­te quiescente ipsa naturam corporis transi­lit. Athanas. cont. Gentes. that goes upward, and the spirit of a beast that goes downward to the earth, Eccles. 3. 21. True 'tis of the Soul of Man, not onely in the time of death and separation from the Body, but in the time of sleep and its operation in the Body, it runs out, rises up and reaches to imagin matters not within the com­pass of other creatures.

2. Reflect: The Soul of Man in Dreams can turn backward and look over its own motions and imaginations, so as to think what it does think. One illustrates this: Si cut in sphaerae ludo unus jacit; alter vero refert pilam tamdiu (que) eleganter ludus producitur quā ­diu inter utrius­que manus jacta & reciprocata pila non excidit, &c. Chrys. Orat. 8. At Tennis there must be two hands, one to smite the Ball for­ward, and another to beat it backward, or the play ceaseth: but the Soul of man can do both these with its own Hands, it can send out thoughts from it self, and [Page 19] cast thoughts back again upon it self, and that in the time of mans sleep: this other sleeping creatures cannot. ACommunicavit Deus creaturis eas capacitates quas conditio creaturae fere­bat, &c. Damas. School Doctor sayes well, That God hath communicated to creatures such capacities as their kind will carry, &c. The con­dition and case of other creatures is not able to bear such abilities, activities when they are best awake, as man may when he is asleep: so that we may well conclude, That Man is the most excellent Elegans animal est homo, donec fuerit homo, &c. Clemens Alex. Strom. 8. creature while he is a Man, and as a Man manages the motions of his own mind.

Yea that which yet further raises mans Soul in its Rational part is, that even in Dreames it can imagin those matters that upon the sensitive part never made impressions. Does not the Philosopher seem to contradict him­selfAristot. lib. 2. Ethi [...]orum. that sayes, Homo est maxime in­tellectus: and yet, Nihil est in intel­lectu quod non prius fuit in sensu: How can the intellect or understanding transcend, if it can proceed no further than as set forward by sense? But sure even in sleep the intellectual part can conceive of things that never were in the Senses, which sets out its singular [Page 20] excellency and surpassing dignity.

2. This may set man upon his duty, diligently to see and consider himself as concerning Dreames:

  • For their good carriage in him,
  • And his good knowledg of them.

1. The right carriage of Dreames, that by Dreames-miscarriage he may not disparage and dishonour himself.Nemo rectè ani­mum suum ho­norat nisi qui fu [...]atis vitiis justitiam colit. Plato in Stob. Ser. 41. 'Twas a high saying of a Heathen, That no man does keep up the honour and dig­nity of his Soul, as is due, but he that drawes in Righteousness and drives away Vice. Indeed he that in the night-time leaves his Soul to the neglects of God, and prostitutes the same to the ser­vice of the Devil in vain and vitious Dreames, does debase it deeply; and he that ascends in Soul by Heavenly Dreames, does advance it highly.

2. The true knowledge of Dreames to endeavour is mans duty: (Indeed this might be fit to go before, for to a right carriage a good knowledg is re­quisite.)

And touching this two things ob­serve;

1. Who are to seek the knowledg here­of: and

[Page 21]2. Why the knowledg hereof is to be sought.

1. See the Persons who are to seek the knowledg of Dreames:

  • They are, All generally,
  • And, Some specially.

1. It concerns all to seek such know­ledg,Nescientia est simplex caren­tia scientiae.—Ignorantia est n [...]scientia eorum que quis scire debet. Aquin. 22 [...]. Qu [...]st. 189 A [...]t. [...], &c. Ut n [...]sc [...]m te, ut noscam me Do­mine. Aug. Con­ [...]ess. li 3. Sunt non nulli qui toto vit [...] spatio non somniarunt, quibus tamen cum eis processu aetatis somnium accidisset, habi­tus corporis vel in mortem vel in aegritudinem fuit mutatus. Arist. de Hist. Anim. l. 4. c. 10. for ignorance herein may soon be a sinne. The Schools observe, That though simple nescience is no sinne, to wit, The bare want of the knowledg of what we be not bound to know: but yet ignorance of what we ought to know is ever a sinne. Now every man ought to know both God and himself, not only in their Beings, but in their Workings. God and man may have great works in Dreames, and therefore these ought by all to be known: All may be operant in them, and therefore none should he ignorant of them. What man is there that may not be drawn to work in this way of Dreames? The Philosopher affirms, that some men through a long space of their lives, lie down and dream not; and then in the process of their age, some dreame hap­pens that presages death, sickness, or [Page 22] some sad event which yet few need to dread, because with the most men Dreames are a common case, and there­fore their knowledg is of generall use.

2. It concerns some especially, to seek of Dreames a due knowledg: viz. such whose Dreames be

  • More Usitate,
  • More Passionate, and
  • More Intricate.

1. Those men with whom Dreames are more Usitate and accustomed: some men do almost as ordinarily dreame as sleep; and should not such know Dreames? they who are most frequent in them, should be most intelligent of them.

2. Such men whose Dreames are Passionate: they fall upon them with an oppressive power; as Pilates wife, who in her Dreame sorely suffered, Matth. 27. 19. Multa passa sum propter [...]um—ut scili­cet a compassio­ne quae erat ad uxorem,—desidior fieret vir circa occa­sionem Christi. Chrys. in Mat. Hom. 87. Tom. 2. & Tom. 9. Vide. Chrysostome concludes, Though Pilate was stupid about the state of Christ, yet his wife had such a Dreame, as made impressions and moved compassions in Christs innocent case. Thus with some sometimes it comes to pass, by Dreames they are [Page 23] much wounded, warmed, awakened; affected, afflicted, inflamed, inforced: su [...]e such are to seek into a serious knowledg of Dreames.

3. Those men whose Dreames are more Intricate and obscurate; Some Man while his Body is asleep, a dark veil seems to cover the face of his Soul, so that it cannot see it self, nor what it transacts: Things seem to be ponderous, yet are ambiguous: they seem to in [...]i­nuate light, yet be accompanied with darkness; in them are such depths asPiorum est ora­re & laborare quando de re­bus magnis in somno [...]nentur ut Deus quid velit clarius o [...]tendit. Pa­raeus Com. in Genes. ca. 41. v. 32▪ occasion doubts and many demurres in the minde: such men have more cause to inquire into the cleere knowledg of Dreames.

2. See some Reasons that may incite all sorts of men to seek this knowledg, and principally to press some men to prosecute this knowledg.

Ponder therefore,

  • 1. The Difficulty of it.
  • 2. The Possibility to it.
  • 3. The Equity for it.
  • 4. The Excellency in it. And
  • 5. The Commodity by it.

1. Difficulty: Hard it is to attain [Page 24] the knowledg of Dreames, because

  • The Soul is secret that conceives them, &
  • Satan is subtill to conceal them.

1. The Soul herein hath secret works,Cypria. de car­din. operibus Christi. Quomodo condi­torem terrae comprehendes? animam habes cujus faculta­tes enumerare non potes. Cyril. Cateches. 6. and indeed works in the Soul are secret. I am patient though I cannot understand (sayes Cyprian) severall of Gods works in the world, for my own Soul hath such works whereof I am ignorant. How canst thou comprehend the excellencie▪ of God above thee? thy own Soul within thee hath faculties and footsteps thou hardly findest out, sayes Cyril.

2. Satan to conceale these Soul­works is subtill: he would not have men discern the good of such Dreams as are from God, nor the evil of such Dreames as from himself pro­ceed.

2. Possibility: Men may attain true knowledg in these Soul-secrets, having those lights that lead thereunto: As

  • The light of Nature, &
  • The light of Scripture.

1. Nature-light led many learned Philosophers to write much of Dreames: to find out all the faculties and abilities of the Soul, they sought out much, as [Page 25] Tertullian relates: and why may notTertul. de Ani­ma. cap. 1. we who have

2. Scripture-light that's better: We have [...], a more sure word, as a light that shineth in a dark place. What is done in the dark this brings to light, layes open and makes known.

3. Equity: 'Tis fit men should know things done in them, such things as they are not only receptive of, but operative in, as in the case of Dreames. In such things doth not God observe us? Thou Psal. 139. 2, 3, 4, 11, 12. knowest my down-lying and up-rising, and understandest my thoughts afar off. Thou compassest my bed and art acquainted with all my wayes. The darkness hideth not from thee.

4. Excellency: The rarity of this knowledg 'tis found in few. To under­stand Dreames, how exceedingly did Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar seek the same? how were helpers herein honoured, as Joseph and Daniel, for their interpre­tingGen. 41. 1, 2, 15, 16. Dan. 2. 3, 48, 49. and making Dreams known.

5. Commodity: Hereby a man may know much of God, of Satan and of himself: hereby a man may know much of the vanity of the world, the [Page 26] venome and villany of Sinne, the ex­cellency and activity of Grace, which probably hath most prevalency in him, and principall power over him, &c.

I shall therefore endeavour to set forth the severall sorts of Dreames, whether they come from God or from the Devil. Dreams drawn in by the Devil, I shall first consider whether they be more false, or more foul.

II. Of False and Deluding DREAMES.

ZACH. 10. 2.‘And they told false Dreames.’

THese few words do affirm a fond Somnia qui a Diabolo immit­tuntur sunt du­plicia, [...]. 1. Ethnicorum, 2. Enthusiasta­rum, Doctores mendaces apud varios vocantur [...], i. Pseudopro­phetae propter similitudinem cum veri [...] pro­phetis—tamen Satanae lenones & lenociniis suis multos a Deo se­ducentes. Calv. Com. in Deut. 13. Aret. in ca. 4. ep. 1. Johan. Report in which we may fitly observe,

  • 1. The Matter reported, &
  • 2. The Men reporters.

The Matter the report is made of, does not concern any of the certain and solid truths of God, but deceitfull fan­cies, false Dreames.

The Men the report is made by, be not the approved Prophets of the true God, but friends to false gods, false Teachers. And they told false Dreames.

That I may fix some serious dis­course upon Dreames false, I shall at present propose,

  • [Page 28]1. The Means of their Production, &
  • 2. The Times of their Traduction.

1. The Means producting, or the procreating causes of false Dreames, they be base brats brought forth be­tween,

  • Satans sleights, &
  • Soul-deceits.

1. The sleights of Satan through which false Dreames be produced. The Devil what is he? sayes Austin, He is Quid est Dia­bolus? Angelus a Deo separa­tus, a sem [...]tipso decept [...], alios decipiens, author fallaciae, pater mendacii, radix malitiae, caput scelerum, &c. Aug. in Vigil. Nat. Dom. Ser. 4. a fallen Angel, who first deceived himself, and ever after seeketh to deceive others, the author of ugly lyes, the father of foul falshoods, &c. though with fair faces, and under truth-pretences, &c. This is he who subtilly sends in severall Dreames, seemingly true yet certainly false.

2. The deceits of mens hearts and souls side with Satan, to set out and send forth false Dreames. The false Pro­phets God reproved, because they de­livered deluding Doctrines and lying Dreames, as certain Truths proceeding from God, when they were but the de­ceit [...] of their own hearts, Jer. 14. 14. Ezek. 13. 2, 3. If we go no further than [Page 29] to the Dreames we finde in the Text, the Devil no doubt was the begetting-Father, an evil minde the conceiving-Mother, and the mouthes of deceiving men were as the helping-Midwives to bring forth these false-births. And they told false Dreames.

2. The Times of traducting or pas­sing over of these evil Dreames from one person to another, from one age to another, is evident. What dealings have been between the Devil and di­vers in Dreames of delusion, Authors Multis tempori­bus somniis fal­lacibus, homines in magnos mit­tuntur errores, &c. Aug. de cura pro mor­tuis. cap. 10. both Divine and Humane make men­tion;

  • Both before Christs coming,
  • And after the coming of Christ.

First, Before Christ came, such Dreaming-thoughts in the mindes of divers men were mightily promoted,

  • Among Jews,
  • And Gentiles.

1. Among the Jews, there were se­verallPropheta non damnat exteras Gentes, sed ca­stigat Judaeos quia relicto Dei verbo sese con­tu [...]erint ad som­nia & simula­ [...] [...]a. Calvin. men into whose mindes Satan suggested such false Dreames, as we finde in the Books both of Moses and the Prophets: Deut. 13. 2, 3. Jer. 23. 25. Dreames were then one of those [Page 30] wayes by which God did usually com­municate his minde to men, Numb. 12. 6. 1 Sam. 28. 15. In imitation of which the Devil in those dayes did manage much of his business in Dreames. And divers were deluded with the wiles of the Devil, pretending the will of God.

2. Among the Gentiles were mul­titudesSolet Daemon in suispseudo-Pro­phetis & aliis impiis imposto­ribus,—Somnia excitare ut olim inter Gentes, &c. Zanch. Tract. de Divi. Sybillae non Dei Prophetae, sed organa Satanae. Aug. in Expos. ad Rom. whose imaginations in this same way were sadly deceived. Unto the ten Sybills of Greece, the Devil in Dreames and Trances did convey very strange things, as Justin Martyr and Lactan­tius relate. And of the like sort were other Ethnick Oracles of old: for when men in matters of doubt did consult with them to be resolved, they were to offer their gift upon the Altar of Apollo, and then to lie down and sleep besides the same Altar, and in a Dreame to receive an answer, as is evidenced byVide Niceph. li. 8. ca. 35. Authors severall.

Secondly, Since Christ came, with such Satanicall suggestions, in Dream­delusions, have severall been deceived:

  • Some that wholly opposed Christ, and
  • Some that in part professed Christ.

1. Some disclaiming Christ and clea­ving [Page 31] to Heathenish gods, have had such delusive Dreames: Thus some an­swersSub Traiano de­ficiunt Ethnica Oracula, Ann [...] Christi 101. Alsted. Chr. mon. Romanae. p. 119. [...] were received from the old O­racles untill Traians time, that was an hundred years after Christ, as Alstedius and others that have written the Chro­nologie of Times assert.

2. Such as in some sense have owned Christ and Gospel-truths, yet have been miserably misled by lying Dreames:

  • Some in the Apostles times, and
  • Some since the times of the Apostles.

1. When the Apostles lived, were [...], &c. v. 9, & 11. some deluded. Yea not only in them­selves seduced, but through such ima­ginations were some made monstrous Seducers. See Simon Magus that great Impostor of the people in Samaria, men­tioned Acts 8. 11. A long time he had bewitched them with his Sorceries. Be­witched: The Greek word [...], sig­nifies, he carried them out of them­selves as in extasies, casting them into trances, causing them to lie as in strange sleeps, and to communicate marvellous matters to them as in Dreames.

Eusebius reports, that he had his [...], his Dream-deluding-Devils, [Page 32] Devils that in Dreames he received de­lusions from, and by whom he deluded others in their Dreames. This Simon, A nomine hone­stissimo dissidet. Simon vocatur, hoc est auditor, scilicet Dei, [...]um factus sit audi­tor Satanae, &c. Aret. in loc. as one observes, did not answer the Etymologie of his Name, for he was no hearer of God, or the voice of Truth, but he hearkned to the Devil and his lying-language, and others listen­ing to and learning of him were delu­ded.

Justin Martyr who was one of the City of Samaria where this Simon Magus did so much mischief, reports him much in this matter, and so doe many other Similia de eo refert, Euseb. lib. 3. ca. 13. Eccles. Hist. ex Justino & Ire­naeo vitam illius describens. De eo etiam co­piose scripsit Epiphan. lib. 1. Sect. 2. quem consule. Polido. lib. 8. cap. 4. & alii. Authors, setting him forth in such sinnefull subtilties through which he drew many Disciples to him­self.

2. Since the Apostles died, in Dreames have divers been seduced, as they who write the Histories and give the Haeresiography of later times relate. The Manichees, Familists and others, from such Dreaming delusions first received their rotten opinions. Those prodigious preachings and pra­ctices of the boisterous Anabaptists in Germany, their first original was drawn [Page 33] from deluding-Dreams. Muncer, Rotman, Phifer, Knipperdoling, John of Lei­den, and others, that were the princi­pall Persons, peremptorily said; That God appeared to them by his Angell in Potest Daemon homines per in­somnia sedu­cere—Hujus generis fuerunt somnia Anabap­tistarum Mona­steriensium qui somniis ad quae­vis flagitia & nefanda scelera monstrosissimas­que opiniones in­citati fuerunt—quorum falsita­tem somniorum acerbos eventus declaravit—Zanch. Tract. de Divinat. the Night, and plainly revealed great and Glorious Things to them in Dreames, &c. Gastius, Hortensius, Melancthon and other Authors, make mention into what multitudes they grew, and what mischiefs they did, not onely in words (condemning Luthers Doctrine; as dull, cold, and carnall, crying down Zwing­lius for Infant baptisme, as Babilonish and abominable: But by force of Arms, plundering the most Noble Hou­ses, and opposing the most Protestant Princes, &c. So that Suevia, Franco­nia, the Higher and the Lower Ger­many was all in an uproare for divers years, beginning their Troubles about the year 1522: and not any end or quiet till about 1540; as Gastio in his Book printed at Basil (in the year 1544,) does fully set forth.

The Improvement of what is thus presented and asserted, is considerable and applicable in a double way:

  • [Page 34]1. For Confuting of Others, &
  • 2. For Profiting our Selves.

First, From the Premises we may fully confute the opinion of those Persons who deny the Falshood of Dreames.

  • Some Positively and in the whole,
  • Some Respectively and in part.

1. Some have wholly denied thatDubium non est quin Diaboli astutia & ma­chinatione talia saepe hominibus objiciantur. Magir. Philos. falsehood affirmed in Dreames. Two sorts of former Philosophers we [...]inde erring in this Point:

  • Some in an Excess, &
  • Others in a Defect.

1. Some have so exceeded and runne out so farre, as to affirm all Dreames to be fallacious and frivolous, without any Truth or certainty: So Xenopha­nes, Ita cynici omnes ineo & Cicero. Zanch. Tract. de Divin. Caliphonius, Epicurus and his Dis­ciples, that there were any Dreames at all, whereof either God or Nature could be the cause; but how causeless and groundless this opinion was, will hereafter by proofs of Scripture plainly appear.

2. Some have fallen so short, as to assert no Dreames to be Deceitfull and vain, but all True, as Protogo­ras [Page 35] with other Stoicks stifly maintained.Consule Clem. Alexandrin. Stromat. li. 1. Nulla somnia evacuabant, &c. Tertul. de Anima. ca. 46. Dr. Willet in Danielem, ca. 1▪ & 2. Quest. 44. The Telmisenses, as Tertullian reports, were much of the same mind. But how much such were mistaken likewise, some worthy Men have made manifest, and the same shall be my further en­deavour to demonstrate: That among Dreames some may be found false.

Secondly, Some among Men may be seen who deny this in part: to wit, as towards themselves no Dreames are false.

Suppose, say some, that in former ages, and other places of the world, some Men have been misled by such Delusions: yet Christians of this Eng­lish-Nation, and in this Gospel-season, have no such Deceits, no false Dreams. Whereas come we never so close to our own Times and Homes, why may not false Dreames be found?

Dreames of Deep Deceit proceed­ing from Satan observe,

  • 1. Such have been actual in some.
  • 2. Such may be actual in others.

1. In some of us we may be sure Deceitfull Dreames have actually been.

  • [Page 36]Both in times more remote,
  • And in later times.

1. In times remote: Some Dreams havePestis haec non tantùm Germa­niam sed Ita­liam & Galliā jamdudum per­vagata est & non olim solum, sed nune etiam renascenti apud Anglos Ecclesiae Christi pluri­mum negotii de­dit, &c. Bul­ling. li. 6. ad­vers. Anabapt. been of this sort, as Seed sown by Satans hand on English ground, though it hath not so sprung up as to spread the Land. When that foresaid fire flamed in Ger­many, some sparks thereof flew over into England as well as other parts, as Bullinger reports. Some Men were of such perswasions, delusions, opinions, though wanting number and power they did not publikely appear.

2. In later times Men have had here at home many a mistaking Dreame: Dreames drawn in by the Devil, which they have taken as tendred to them by the hand of a Holy God. Concern­ing,

  • What God would do for them, &
  • What they should do for God.

1. Dreames declaring how God would advance them, raise them, use them, and make them high for his ho­nour; promoting persons of the same Principles, to great possessions, trans­actions; setting them upon bold pre­sumptions, proud predictions, as have [Page 37] appeared from some in their printed Pamphlets.

2. Dreames declaring how God did advise them, counsell them, command them what wayes to forbear, and which wayes to bend themselves. So some have of late yeares deserted our pub­like Assemblies, into separated com­panies, as being warned of God in Dreames so to do. The last Instance I heard related, was of a Woman in a neighbouring Town, who dreamed that God one night said to her, Come out Isa. 52. 11. 2 Cor. 6. 17. Rev. 18. 4. Vera interpre­tatio ad vitan­dam idolola­triam, &c. Aret. in loc. from among them, and be ye separate, &c. She awaked, fell asleep again and heard the same from God; so that, said she, the Dreame was doubled, to shew the certainty. In obedience to which, she ever after forsook all publike Or­dinances, though many years after she did not live. Her own Sister, who re­ceived this same from her mouth, is yet alive to witness it.

2. In others, false and deceitfull Dreames may actually be; consider­ing,

  • Their Hearts Corruption, &
  • Satans Temptation.

[Page 38]1. Corruption of Heart is naturally equall in all. The Philosopher sayes ofAnima tota est in toto, & tota in qualibet par­te the Reasonable Soul, That 'tis wholly in the whole Body, and whole in every part, though not to every purpose. But of Original Sinne it may be said; 'Tis whole in every Person to every purpose: and did not God prevent, it would so appear. No transgression so great, or delusion so gross but thereto this would entice.

2. Satans Temptations tend hereto: The Devil in Dreames hath deluded divers in daies past; and do not we think that this old Serpent growes sim­ple, and that through age the Devil doats, enfeebled in his parts, powers andNon mirum est si Satan variè varios illudat, &c. omnibus er­rorumcapturis—obnoxii sunt qui Dei verbo lu­cente non re­guntur. policies? Nay rather, long experience hath raised his subtilties into greater activities. 'Tis no wonder (sayes a good Expositor) the Devil now adayes sedu­ces divers sorts in divers wayes; 'tis ra­ther a wonder that all his wayes of de­lusions do not take upon all those persons who leave the light of Gods good Word, to be led by their own foolish fancies. Alas how few are serious with God? how many make a meer Dreame of Re­ligion? [Page 39] that it might be just with God in such Dreames of Religion, to leave them to Dreames of Delusion.

Secondly, For the further profiting of our selves, all that I shall say concern­ing such false deceitfull Dreames, shall be,

  • To make a Discovery of them, &
  • To help a Delivery from them.

First, To discover and finde out false Dreames: This is indeed difficult, through Satans designs and Mans heart-deceits.Animalia quae­dam, ne inveniri possint vestigia sua circa cubile suum confun­dunt, Seneca. Ep. 68. Seneca reports the property of some wild Beasts, who especially about their Dens and sleeping places seek to obscure the tracts and prints of their feet, that followed they be not found out. Sinne and Satan much seek to hide their foot-steps, those walks and works they have in the Heads andDuas portas di­visit somnii, corneam veri­tatis ebur­neam fallaciae. Respicere est enim inquiunt per cornu ebur autem caecum est, &c. Homerus Idem Virgil. 6. Aeneid. Hearts of sleeping Men. Peter Martyr in his Common places, reports out of Heathen Writers, that they were wont to appoint to Dreames two doores: The one a door of Horn which was the door of Truth; the other a door of Yvory which was the door of Deceit: for Horn say they may be looked through, and [Page 40] Truth is easie to be looked into; but Yvory is thick and dark: so deceit and falshood is hardly descried. Dreames of Truth that proceed from God are sooner seen; but Dreames of falsehood that fall in from Satan, are not so dis­coverable, though to be discovered de­sireable.

To understand and discerne such Dreames, whose Author is the Devil, may be a lesson worth our learning. I would to God (sayes Austin) I could Aug. Epist. 100. ad Evodium. clear the difference, between Dreames drawn in by the Devil to seduce and de­ceive me, and those brought in of God to incite and save me. As the Magicians of Egypt, in the day did divers things in the eyes of Men, like to the work­ings of Moses that man of God: so Sa­tan in the night, may draw divers thingsPrudentèr con­siderandum & diligentèr di­stinguēdum esse an Deus in som­niis certe loqua­tur, an vero ho­mines fallaci­ter se jactent pro ejus servis, &c. Calv. in Jerem. into the mindes of Men, like to the workings of God himself. Yet though there be an appearing resemblance, there is a positive difference between Dreams from the Devil as a transformed Angel of Light, and Dreames from God the onely true Father of Lights, which we may infallibly finde out, by a serious [Page 41] observing on both sides:

  • Their concommitant Causes, &
  • Their consequent Effects.

First, To discover them in their Causes, 'tis meet to meditate,Gerson. lib. de distinctione ve­rarum & falsa­rum visionum.

  • The Matter for their Substance, &
  • The Manner of their Conveyance.

1. The Matter about which they be wrought up, is deeply different: such Dreames as are undoubted of God be made up of things,

  • Highly eminent in the sight of God, &
  • Wholly consonant to the Word of God.

Whereas the best Dreames that pro­ceedLege Bucerum in Epist. ad Rom. cap. 13. Tertullian. ad­versus Marcion. lib. 1. & 4. from Satan, be about matters of no such eminency in the one, nor any such consonancy to the other. For some­times such Dreames are filled with foo­lish and frivolous, vain and ridiculous things, and at all times they are oppo­site and repugnant, either in whole or in part, to the pure and precious Word of God. The Prophet that hath a Dreame, let him tell a Dreame, and he that hath my Word, let him speak my Word faith­fully; for what is the chaff to the wheat? saith the Lord, Jer. 23. v. 28. Gods Word is wheat without chaff, the Prophets [Page 42] Dreame is chaff without wheat, or if therein be any wheat, there is much chaff therewith. That Satan may the sooner sell off and make the quicker markets of his chaff, he may mingle therewith some good wheat of Gods Word: The Satanas transfigurat se sicut Angelus lucis & de Scripturis divi­nis laqueum pa­rat, utitur hisce testimoniis non ut doceat sed ut fallat. Ambros. in Lucam. li. 4. de Tentat. Chri­sti. Aquin. 2a. 2ae. Quaest. 172. & Art. 6. Devil in his Dreame­delusions, may suggest some Scripture­expressions: In such pieces of Sugar, he makes men swallow the Pills of his poisonous errors. The Devil that he may the better lay his Babes in mens bosomes, he dresses them up in Scrip­ture-cloathes: Hence men hug meer fancies, embracing false Dreames for infallible Truths. True Dreames that be indeed from God, they throughout agree with Gods word, their whole mat­ter is of worth and good weight in Gods balance, pure, ponderous and precious, substantiall, solid and serious.

Secondly, The Manner after which they are wrought in, is also differing. Dreames from the Devil they come in a man

  • As more Hasty,
  • So more Hidden.

In these Dreamings the Devils dri­vings [Page 43] are like to the drivings of Jehu, furious and fierce, thoughts throng in and thrust out with violence and force, so that thereby reason is oft darkened,Diabolus est fu­ri [...]sus Dominus, si semel te com­prehend erit, nec die nec nocte te requiescere si­net, &c. Ambros. de fuga seculi. cap. 4. Nusquam resi­dentis animi volutatio, &c. Seneca lib. de Tranquillitate. Quando divini­tùs mi [...]tuntur somnia, nos su­mus quasi non dormimus imò advertimus clariùs quam consueverimus vigilantes ideo in hujusmodi somniis ponitur vaticinium. Iamblicus. brain distempered and powers disturb­ed, foot-steps so frequently confused, that little is orderly discerned. Thoughts be in the minde like Rebekahs twins in her womb, strugling together: but they do not like them come forth, one hold­ing the heel of another; but be full of inconsistencies, lubricities, slippery, se­vered and unsetled, rushings in and rollings about, Reason so roving from one thing to another, that the minde makes miserable non-sence. Much of this might be manifested from that Dreame of Eliphas, Job 4. 11, 12, 16, 17, verses. which Dreame is judged to be but an illusion of the Devil, to strengthen the hands of Eliphas, in vex­ing and troubling Job.

On the other side, Dreames from God, they come in a manner

  • As more Moderate,
  • So more Manifest.

Divine Dreames make a more or­derly entrance, and leave a more legible [Page 44] Impress: Thoughts herein as adheringSciendum est somnia divina ab aliis somniis multum differ­re quia insculp­tam habet cer­titudinis notam & clar [...]us ob­signantur ut mi­nimè ambigua sit eorum veri­tas. Bulling. in Mat. one to another, so declaring one of another. As bringing in things more leisurely, so making of things more intelligible, more evident and easie to be understood. If some things at first seem intricate, yet the longer the mind dilates thereon, the more it understands therein, and the more it apprehends of Gods mind thereby.

Secondly, Dreames are discovered by their differing effects: Those that come forth from God, they wonderfully work a Man

  • To advance Gods Truth, &
  • To abase himself.

1. Truth hereby is brought much more to advance, and thereof to set a farre higher price. The Truths of Gods Word are made more precious to his mind by this means. Such a man is most likely to speak in Luthers lan­guage, The least title of divine Truth is Unam apex ve­ritatis, plus va­let quam coelum & terra. Lu­ther. more worth than Heaven and earth.

2. Self, hereby he is brought to a­base. A divine Dreame drives out pride, and proves a good Antidote a­gainst pride-poison. Both these blessed [Page 45] effects may be found from that of Elihu, Job 33. 15, 16, 17. God speaketh once, yea twice—In a Dreame and Vision of the Night—Then he opens the ears of men, and Seals their Instruction: That is, Then divine Truths take deep Impres­sions, and come to high estimations, &c. That he may withdraw man from his pur­pose, and hide pride from man. This is Gods end in sending such a Dreame.

To hide pride.] The passage impliesPrimi hominis peccatum pri­mum superbia fuit, qua quod­dam spirituale bonum supra mensuram suae conditionis ap­petivit, &c. Tho. Aquin. 22ae. Quest. 162. Art. 1, & 2. mans proneness pride-ward. Pride is that posture that man hath least reason for, yet most propension to. Pride is that Sinne (as Aquinas well cleers it) that first took the heart of the first Man, so that ever since, of all evils every mans eye is most apt upon this. Now God to hide this Sinne out of mans sight, sends sometimes such Dreames as draws his eyes another way, he sees that in God and in himself, as pulls down and puts out pride. Musculus well observes, That Dreames from Heaven bring such a light into mans heart, and leave such dints thereupon, as makes him more humble, awfull, dreading God and de­nying himself. Whereas delusions in [Page 46] Dreames drawn in by the Devil, doLege Hier. Zanch. in Tra­ctat. de Divi­nat. per Furo­rem. Ma [...]ta dis­crimina inter vati [...]inia divi­na & Diabolica observatione digna. deeply dispose mens minds,

  • To Corrupt Conceptions, &
  • To Proud Presumptions.

Such Dreames lay Leaven in mans heart, that sowres and poisons his Prin­ciples, that he is the more prone to er­roneous opinions: They leave levity and lightness upon the mind, that makes man apt to mount upwards in high thoughts of himself. They prophecie salse Dreames, and by their lightness cause my people to erre, saith the Lord, Jer. 23. 32. Through the mischief of these Dreams, men are made light, vain and vapour­ing, venting their own apprehensions and imaginations with high ostenta­tions, admirations and commendations of themselves. Thus Simon Magus a man (as before mentioned) much in these Dreames, whereupon he gave out that himself was some Great ONE, Acts 8. 9. A while he pretended, that by Dreames and other immediate wayes was Gods will in wonders to him re­vealed; but after (as Justin Mar­tyr and Epiphanius reports) he blas­phemously boasted that himself was [Page 47] God, and accordingly near Rome erectedJustinus Mart. refert in 2. A­polog. hunc Si­monem sub. Glaudio Caesare Romae meruisse statuam inter duos pontes Ty­beris cum hac inscriptione, Si­moni Deo san­cto. Et in Dia­logo cum Tri­phone refert se Caesarem monu­isse hunc Simo­nem Samarita­nos seducere adeo ut Deum esse dicant. Aug. lib. 38. quest. 79. lib. 3. de Trinit. ca. 7. Theodor. quaest. 8. in Exod. Philo. li. de vi­ta Mosis. a Statue with this Inscription; To Si­mon the holy God. Yea and the same Authors set out, how the Samaritans who were deluded by the same means, would boldly say, This Simon to be God. These were the proud fruits of false Dreames. Such effects do plainly point out their Father.

Furthermore such differences as the Learned lay down between true Mira­cles and false, are usefull in this case.

True Miracles (say they) are discern­ed, in that they directly tend

  • To glorifie God, &
  • To edifie Men.

False Miracles pretend hereto, but they fetch such a compass about, and take in such things by their way, as whereby God is not really glorified, nor Men spiritually edified.

Thus true Dreames in a direct line lead to the glorification of God in the good of men, and to the edification of men, in the matters of God. But false Dreames, their drift is, to draw the Souls of men aside to such acts as are dishonourable to God, disagreeing to [Page 48] his Word, and disadvantagious towards mens eternall good.

This may suffice for a discovery of false Dreames.

Now to help forward our delivery from false Dreames, I shall endeavour to lay down

  • Motives to Decline them, &
  • Means for to Escape them.

1. Motives that may incite to seek safety from such deceiving Dreames; may appear by ponderingPontanus Ca­tal. Haeret. Guy-de-Bres. li. 1. cont. Ana­baptist.

  • The Perils of them, &
  • And the Evils in them.

The perils of false Dreames, or Dreames of deceit, may be seen by observing man subject to Deceits,

  • From what Cause,
  • At what Time.

1. The Causes from whence upon Man Deceits may soon take place, and he become a creature quickly by De­ceits misled; proceeds

  • From the properties of Deceivers, &
  • His proneness to be Deceived.

1. Deceivers have such properties as cause and encrease the peril of pitifull Deceits upon the Soul of Man:

[Page 49]The Devil and the World we grant are great Deceivers, now let us but se­riously observe

  • Their Diversity,
  • Their Unity,
  • Their Sedulity,
  • And Subtilty.

1. Their Diversity: These decei­versDiversa sunt Daemonum ge­mera—regnum & politiam in­ter se habent. Luth. loc. com. 5ae. Classis. cap. 1. are divers in their nature and num­ber. There are, saith Luther, divers kinds of Devils, and they have their divers wayes and wiles to work on their seducing designs: They be various and numerous: what else means that, Mar. 5. 9. My Name is Legion, for we are many.

2. Their Unity: These deceivers are associate: The Devils have no di­vided Kingdom, they do not love to cross one another, but all accord in one to mislead man: In their forgeries and falshoods they are confederate.

3. Their Sedulity: These deceivers are diligent, and in bewitching works unwearied, ever walking up and down, Job 2. 2.

4. Their Subtilty: These Decei­vers though full of power, yet most [Page 50] act by Policie. I beleeve (sayes Lu­ther)Credo eum pos­se una hora. Luth. ibid. the Devil hath so much power, as he could in one hour overthrow all men on earth; yet his envious activity ap­pears most in his policie. As one said of Theodorus, that his main art lay in [...], &c. Arist. making of witty Epithetes: so may we say of Satan, That his chief strength lies in framing subtill deceits. This is he who dispatches out his spirits, men subtill to deceive; this is he who sends out his Books as baits, by which many are cunningly caught, with the venome of which so many persons are poisoned. As in Ceiland, they say a Snake lyeth under every leaf; so may we say of se­verall Books now abroad, Serpentine poison may be found in every line: These lay matter for delusive Dreames.

2. No marvell men are prone to be misled by Dreames of delusion, for in all kinds and cases are they apt to be deceived,

  • Through gross Ignorance, &
  • Through Self-confidence.

1. Mens ignorance is gross, which makes mens minds to be like dark shops, in which the Devil best puts off [Page 51] bad wares. Many men who to know­ledgSeal & illa ig­norantia, quae non est eorum qui scire vo­lunt, sed corum qui scire nesci­unt neminem si excusat ut sempiterno igne non ardeat, &c. Aug. de gra. & Lib. arb. cap. 3. pretend high, yet are ignorant of Principles; who say they see, yet like blind Sampson cannot finde the Pillars of Gods house, Judg. 16. 26. That igno­rance which exposes men to the destru­ction of Hell, no doubt disposes them to delusions on earth. That ignorance which makes men to oppose God in the wayes of his Truth, does dispose men to the lies of the Devil, and all the de­ceits of sinne.

2. Mens Confidence is commonly abundant, of their own abilities: They conceive themselves secure from the deceivings of Satan and delusions of sinne. As 'tis said of Jerusalem, Lam. 4. 12. Men imagined no enemy could en­ter within the gates of that City. Thus some suppose themselves so strong, that no errour can enter within the gates of their souls: other men may be seduced, but there is no danger of them. As the Donatists cried down Austin for a de­ceiver, Donatistae Au­gustinum—ani­marum seducto­rem publicè & privatim con­clamabant. Possidonius. but would not beleeve them­selves deceived. Mens pride of their parts makes them prone to deceits: Yea vain man would be wise, though he be [Page 52] like a wild Ass colt, Job 11. 12.

Vain man,] Hollow and empty man that thinks, in him he hath all, yet hath nothing at all in him.

Would be wise,] That is, does ima­gin himself the onely wise man in the world. Tune solus sapis, was Luthers question oft to himself? An humble man is ready to say, I know not how to beleeve my own knowledg; I di­strustDissido oculis meis & identi­dem interrogo an legerim an viderim? &c. Plin. Paneg. my own eyes, mine own ears, mine own apprehensions, &c. But or­dinarily, men are ignorant of their ig­norance, conceited of their knowledg, which makes them exceedingly subject to Satans deceits. No creature so apt to deceive others as man, therefore God may let him alone even to deceive him­self: The heart of man is deceitfull a­bove all things and desperately wicked, Jer. 17. 10. and therefore no marvell to finde man full of deceits, and forward to be deceived.

2. Consider the Time at which mans danger is of deceiving: viz.

  • At all times generally,
  • But at some times specially.

There is no time, as there is no place, [Page 53] but this danger endures. A man cannot walk in his fields, sit at his table, lye upon his bed, but he may soon be decei­ved, and so for time; Time is divided intoDies & no [...] perpetuitatem significat. Aug. Serm. 11. de Tempore. Satan it a per­petuo impugnat utrumque, & puritatem Do­ctrinae, & inte­gritatem Vitae, &c. Luth. loc. com. 5ae. partis. cap. 1. de Dia­bolo. Day and Night, now both night and day may men fall into falshoods. Luther observes, that through Satans incessant subtilties, man is at all seasons subject to a double deception,

  • In the Principles of Faith, &
  • In the Practises of Life,

Not onely in the Practises of Life, but in the very Principles of Faith, man is perpetually prone to be depraved, seduced and deceived day and night.

1. In the day time: The cleerest day cannot free man from the foulest mistake, nor can the brightest light se­cure him from the danger of the deep­est deceit.

2. In the night time does this dan­ger undoubtedly endure,

  • Much when awake,
  • Most when asleep.

1. In time when awake, O what false things may a man fancie! The waking body may lye still in the bed, but the working minde walk abroad, imagining [Page 54] a multitude of matters of meer mi­stakes, and monstrous deceits full of sinne.

2. In time of sleep men may be in more hazard of sinfull delusions than in their waking-seasons. When men are awake, they may escape mistakes through the help of their hearing, see­ing, and those outward senses then assi­sting, which in sleep lye bound and do not benefit them, or better inform them. In sleep Satan can assault theMens peracutè perspiciens alie­nos errores, tar­da est ad pro­prios cognoscen­dos defectus. Basil. Hexam. Hom. 9. heart, and mislead the mind, and be less observed. The mind even of waking man, that looks out with an acute eye upon others errors, yet is ever slow, much more in sleep, to take notice of its own defaults through Satans deceits: so that mans sleep-time is to Satans de­signes very advantagious. When Da­lilah had got Sampson asleep, then she binds his hands, shaves his head, bereaves him of his beauties and abilities, Judg. 16. 19. So the time of mans sleep is a suitable season for Satans enticing temptations, and his turning men aside by dreaming delusions. And so having seen the severall perils of false Dreams,

[Page 55]2. Let us see the severall evils of Dreames found to be false;

  • Whence they appear, &
  • What they really are.

Fearfull evils of false Dreames do plainly and plentifully appear,

  • From infallible Scriptures, &
    Vid. Aug. de Civit. Dei. li. 18. ca. 18.
  • From credible Writers.

The evils that evidently out of these appear, are of two sorts,

  • Evils of Sinne, &
  • Evils of Punishment.

The Sins of some men through such Dreames have been dreadfull;

  • Against God, &
  • Against their Neighbour.

Against God: Through such deceiving Dreames mens sinnes have been ex­ceeding great, as have been seen seve­rall wayes:

  • Remotely in his Vicegerents, &
  • In his Immediate Concernments.

1. Against God in his Vicegerents Vide Marlorat in locum. some have been sinfully set, through the deceit of Dreames. Likewise these delusive Dreames (so some reade that of the Apostle, Jude 8.) despise Domi­nion and speak evil of Dignities. This [Page 56] hath been the sequele and sad effect of some men misled by deluding Dreames, to cry down Magistracy, yea to rise up against Magistrates, opposing and gain­saying all good manners of Govern­ments and Governours, whereby theyEst bellum gere­re cum Deo, de­decore afficere quod ipse hono­ravit, & quod a Deo extollitur pedibus concul­care; nec vero breviore com­pendio mundi ruinam moliri & latro ciniorum li­tiam summa in ubi (que) introdu­cere possent quam cum gla­dii potestatem abrogari volunt. Calv. Instruct. advers. Anab. fight against God, blemishing what God hath beautified, and abolishing what God hath ratified: Yea and as Calvin in the case further observes; Hereby men waxing bold and wresting the Sword out of the Magistrates hand, they have taken the readiest way to ruine States, Empires and Kingdomes, and at this door to in­troduce all licentious liberties of the most egregious impieties that can possibly ap­pear against God.

2. God himself in his most imme­diate concernments, hath been hereby boldly assaulted and highly affronted: such deceitfull Dreamers,

  • Covering their Lies with the Truths of God, &
  • Fathering their Lies upon the God of Truth.

1. False Dreamers have covered their naked brats with Bible-leaves, interpreting sound Scriptures for the [Page 57] introducting of rotten errors, and per­verting Gods solid sayings for the sup­porting of Satans subtill designes; set­ting their wits awork when awake, to make good their sinfull conceits in sleep.

2. Such Dreamers have fatheredLege Bulling. advers. Anabap. li. 1. ca. 2. their loud lies upon the Lord himself, Jer. 23. I have heard (saith the Lord) what the Prophets said that prophecie lies in my Name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed, ver. 25. To prophesie lies is bad, but to prophesie lies in Gods Name is worse. Behold saith the Lord, Omnes ferè In­terpretes ver­bum Hebraicum accipiunt pro dulce reddere vel linguam mollificare, ita ut sermo eorum melle dulcior—vel significat ef­ferre in sublime they use their tongues and say, He saith, ver. 31. Calvin gives the various inter­pretations of the Hebrew word: They used their tongues: That is, they smooth'd their tongues, or they sweet­ned their tongues with sugred expres­sions and honey words: They lift up their tongues and speak high, with loud and lofty words, boasting of Gods minde made manifest to them in admi­ring Dreames. Against God such mon­strous evils in other ages have been evident, yea found frequent, as fruits of false Dreames.

[Page 58]2. Against their Neigbours through such Dreames of Deceit have severall sadly sinned: to wit,

  • Against their Souls, &
  • Against their Bodies.

1. Against the Souls of their Neigh­bours, endeavouring to draw them to dreadfull evils;

  • As to forsake the Wayes of God,
  • Yea to forget the Name of God.

1. The wayes and prescribed pathes of God, such have sought to make o­thers like themselves forsake, seeking not onely by subtill means to turn, but by boisterous and violent means, to thrust men from the good wayes of God: And that Prophet or dreamer of Dreames, who hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, and to thrust thee out of the way which the Lord thy God hath commanded, &c. Deut. 13. 6.

2. The Name of the Great God they have sought to make good men forget: Indeed to bring Gods people utterly to forget Gods Name they never could according as they did think: They think to cause my people to forget my Name, [Page 59] by their Dreames which they tell every Duae pestes dili­genter cavendae sunt in Ecclesia, una pestis nota ubi homines ad foedas supersti­tiones trahun­tur. Altera pe­stis occultior & ideo magis peri­culosa cum ho­mines sub specie veritatis in er­rores per insi­dias a cultu Dei abducuntur. Calvin. man to his neighbour, Jer. 23. 27. Yet such men by such means have sometimes so far prevailed, as to make Gods professing people to fall into foul errors. They pro­phecie false Dreames, and cause my peo­ple to erre by their lies, ver. 33.

To erre.] The Septuagint expresses it by a word that signifies to wander as the Planets. Those false dreaming Pro­phets caused the people of the Lord to be like wandring Starres, running into irregular wayes from the strait way of truth and holiness.

2. Against their Neighbours Bodies Quos fallaciis non possunt de­cipere, gladiis clamant ferien­dos, &c. Ponta­nus, de Ana­bap. and temporall being, have some been sinfully drawn through the deceit of Dreames: so bitterly bent, as that those whom they could not deceive by their falsities, they would destroy by their cruelties: Hence hath been butcheries and bloodsheds of blessed Saints. And here I cannot but make fresh mention of Muncer the Anabaptist and his tran­sported party in Germany, of whom Sleiden and others beforenamed report: They were led into such slaying deeds by their lying Dreames. They gave out [Page 60] (who were the chief among them) thatCertissimè vobis confirmo. Deus enim qui menti­ri aut fallere non potest; coram, mihi in somniis victoriam pro­misit & jussit ut ad hunc mo­dum rem aggre­diar, &c. Verba Munceri Mili­tibus [...]uis. Sleid. com. cit. li. 5. God declared himself and the secrets of his heart to them in their sleep; and that his will was, that all wicked Princes and people should be slain, that so the Saints alone might live and rule the world, &c. This poisonous principle being suc'kt in and received, they first fell to secret murders and cruell massacres, and afterwards to open warres and bloody battels, in which many good Protestants lost their pre­cious lives, to accomplish their hellish lies, and please their pernicious lusts. Be it considered how such sinnes have been the sad sequels of deceiving Dreames.

Secondly, Let us consider deceiving Dreames in their sad punishments: False Dreames (as their poenall effects) have been frequently found

  • Not to produce, what they did pro­pose, &
  • What they did not propose, to produce.

1. They may not produce what they seem to present, they may not attain whereto they pretend. Tertullian treat­ing of Dreames in generall, sayes thus; [Page 61] Behold therein a Fencer but without wea­pons, Conspice gladi­atorem sed sine armis; pugnatur certatur, sed vac [...]a jactatio; multa fieri vi­dentur, quae non faciuntur. Actu [...]iunt, effectu ve­ro non [...]iunt, &c. Ter [...]. li. de ani­ma. ca. 45. behold fighting but never a blow given, many motions but nothing done, among many things seemingly presented nothing really effected, &c. This is most certain in such Dreames as we are now dealing with, not onely at the time of present appearance, there is no positive performance, but there may be no fol­lowing effects when men are awake that sute to such conceptions in sleep. We read of certain Witches, to whomEst quaedam o­peratio Daemo­num in Ministe­rio praescientiae, quae variis mo­dis ab his qui se Daemonibus mancipaverunt nunc per sortes nunc per somnia, &c. Origen in Periarchon. Hom. 16. in Numeros. in the night time the Devil did bring (to their thinking) good pieces of gold, but in the day-time when they went to make use thereof, all proved but wi­thered leaves. Thus witnesseth Remi­gius, in his book De Daemonalatria, who was a Judg in Lorreighne, under whom divers of those seduced creatures suffer­ed. So may Satan set golden matters before the mindes of Dreaming men, which yet afterward in waking-time may wither and prove no such matter: So that of such Dreames a man is made ashamed when he sees his raised expectations sink. Disappointment is a very great punishment.

[Page 62] Quest. May not the Devil in Dreams foretell such things as may in time come to pass?

Answ. To satisfie in this matter, some things may be said▪

  • By way of Concession, &
  • By way of Negation.

First, Concession.] We grant 'tisAquinds, 2a. 2ae. Quaest. 171. Art. 4. possible that Satan may fore-see some things in such cases, which in Dreames as well as other wayes he may commu­nicate to the mindes of men. They who have read any thing of the Oracles of old, have found how the Devil in dayes past did assist presages of strange things to come. Plutarch reports in theLege Ciceronem li. 2. de Divina­tione de Alex­andro Magno & de Ptolomaeo. Exemplum illu­stre somnii dia­botici est apud Herodot. lib. 7. in Xerxe. Quem illusiones nocturnae mali Daemonis insti­gabant ad bel­lum Graecis mo­vendum. Aug. de Gen. ad lit. li. 12. ca. 19. life of Alexander, how that great Con­querour was from such causes [...]coura­ged in his encounters: Particularly the Historian tells, how before Alexander made warre with Darius King of Persia, he was thus by the Oracle assured of his success: Go on Alexander, thou shalt be a conquerour: Upon this he invades Asia, subdues Darius in battell, tran­slates the Empire from Persia to Greece, doing great things as the Oracle had said. And though Oracles as of old are [Page 63] ceased, yet Satan hath severall wayes and means by which he can interpose himself, and propose future things to the fantasies of men both awake and asleep. He may impart what he fore­knows, and to assist his prescience, or help his foreknowledg, he hath very great advantages:

  • By Reflection, &
  • By Inspection.

1. By reflecting and looking back upon what hath been done in dayes past. The Devil knowes that Scripture: The thing that hath been, it is; that which shal be, and that which is done, is that which shall be done, and there is no new thing under the Sunne, Eccl. 1. 9.

2. By inspecting or looking intoChrysost. oper. imperf. in Ma. Hom. 19. Cassiodorus in prolog. sup. Psal. c. 1. severall present things:

  • What God hath Proposed,
  • How men are Disposed, &
  • What himself is resolved.

1. What God hath proposed in his Word: The Devil is well acquainted with Scripture-prophesies, what revo­lutions of things God hath said shall be in the latter times, &c.

2. How men are disposed in the [Page 64] world: whether their proud, presum­ptuous and ambitious principles are prompt and bent in each age and place, &c.

3. What himself is set upon, and resolves to doe his full endeavour in, purposed to bend all his abilities to bring such a business about, if by any means and way, &c. Satan observingSomnia dupli­cia, [...]. Sunt haec som­nia quae praesa­giunt. such things within himself and others, marking the affections of persons, the affairs of Nations, &c. he learns much and can see farre, and may tell a great way off, things that may come to pass, even positive accomplishments of things in Dreames suggested. Luther Diabolus est exercitatus & instructus insi­nitis exemplis gubernationis divinae; novit item voluntates, studia, consilia hominum—callidissimus est & omnes deliberationes Regum sapientum, Jureconsul [...]orum Theologorum—exactissime tenet. Luth. loc. com. 5ae. Classis. cap. 1. de Diabol. discoursing of the prescience, experience and subtill insights of Satan, sayes; That he hath learned to look into the gu­bernations of God, the counsels and con­sultations of all sorts of men, thereby pro­moting his knowledg.

Secondly, Negation.] Satan with all his subtilties and assistances cannot so fore-see, as in Dreames to fore-tell things.

  • [Page 65]1. Not Solely,
    Non Damonis sed solius Dei est futura a se­ipso & in seipsis cognoscere. A­quinas 1 a. Q. 57. Art. 3. Aquin. 22ae. Quaest. 95 Potest Daemon futura multa praenoscere & alicui impio per insomnia reve­lare. Test. Vale. Max. li. 1. ca. 5. August. li. de Divin. Daemo­ [...]um. ca. 3, & 5.
  • 2. Not Wholly,
  • 3. Not Cleerly,
  • 4. Not Surely.

1. Not Solely: That is, not he him­self alone, but as he hath help from some others, as from God, his Word and Works: God intending to suffer Satan in such transactions, yea pur­posing to imploy him as an Instrument, in executing his judgements, and infli­cting punishments upon families, per­sons and Nations, may let him know aforehand what things shall be done: and the Devil finding fit Instruments for him, may by such Dreames draw them in: thereby reporting to them what was imparted to him.

2. Not wholly: Though in part, by Dreames Satan may signifie something that concerns some Signall business about to come; yet for the Series and successive proceedings of things he is at a loss and can say little: Many things do intervene that he did not discern and so could not forewarn.

3. Not cleerly: The Devil about his predictions goes much in the dark, [Page 66] carrying things in the clouds. DreamesVentura praedi­cere non de­monstrare, &c. Bucerus in Rom. cap. 12. Beda in ca. [...]. Lucae. li. 2. are intricate, not onely because he is fraudulent, but also because he is ig­norant. The Devil indeed knows what he desires, and resolves to endeavour, but knows not what he shall effect, or what God will suffer.

4. Not Surely: The Devil in Dreams may come with confidence, yet a mise­rable mistake may be found in the con­sequence. In Dreames the Devil mayPotest praedice­re Diabolus cer­tum non [...]ertò. fore-tell a certain thing to come to pass, yet cannot fore-tell it shall come to pass certainly. Perhaps the Devils de­sign is, not to have the thing certain­ly done; but onely to deceive with a Dreame. Perhaps sometimes things he desires may so fall out, by which Satan seeks to make men desert the sure word of God, and to give credit to deceitfull Dreames, and Dreames of deceit, in which he is upon no certainty or assured success. In this case of fore­telling future things by Dreames, Ari­stotle well states it: A blind man (says he) in shooting arrows, one may hit the Aristot. lib. de Divinat. per ins [...]mnia. mark, but the most miss. If some things so dreamed do happen, yet more meerly [Page 67] vanish: Most of the Devils-Dreams do not produce what they did propose, which proves a part of their punish­ment.

2. Such Dreames they produce as a further part of their punishment, such sad Events as they proposed not. No­tableJactatis mag­num ac [...]men & magnam perspi­caciam spiritus, ego autem dete­gam vestrum opprobrium, omnes vos vide­bunt vacuos cae­lestis Doctrinae. is that place of the Prophet for the proof of both: Micha. 3. 6, 7. The Seers shall be ashamed, and the Diviners confounded; yea they shall cover their lips, for there is no answer of God. That is, they shall be confounded when they find no such effects to follow as they formerly fancied, nor things to be ful­filled as they fore-told. Night shall be unto them that they shall not have a vi­sion, it shall be dark and they shall not divine, &c. That is, they who have had their nights of sinning, their Dreams and deeds of darkness which now shall cease: and on the other side, they shall have such a night of suffering and sore punishment as they never expected, such darkness of dismall miseries as they never imagined, dreadfull judg­ments they never dreamed of, &c. As Joseph dreamed of his preferment, but [Page 68] never dreamed of his imprisonment: so 'tis common for sinfull men, to dreame of their rising, but never dreame of their fall, as if such a day would never follow. Thou shalt surely fall in the day, and the Prophet shall fall Noctu corrui [...] Propheta. In­telligit Prophe­tas non veros sed falsos qui nocturnis emen­titis ora [...]alis populum [...]edde­bant securum, &c. Paraeus in locum. with thee in the night, Hos. 3. 5. They who have had their night-sinnes shall have their day-falls. Those lying Dreames the Devil layes for a foun­dation in the night, men may thereon raise a rare building, but a day will dawne when God will fling it down, so as not a stone to be left upon a stone. Astonishing punishments will surely be to such

  • Both from God,
  • And from Men.

1. God will engage himself against Men promoting false Dreames: Behold I am against them that prophecie false Dreames, saith the Lord, Jer. 23. 32. Now as when God is for any, he shews it by vouchsafing of his favours; soEmm [...]n [...]el est verbum dul [...]is­s [...]m: sed Mi­chael quando [...]o [...]ra nos est [...]rr [...]ilissimum verbum. when God is against any, it appears by inflicting of his judgments. As God with us is the greatest mercy; so a man needs no greater misery than God a­gainst him,

[Page 69] 'Tis Hell in Hell.

2. Men sometimes are engaged of God against such bold Dreamers: God drawes them out as Instruments to in­flict his judgments. Men commonlyMa [...]hinantur fraudes imo ita inte [...]ti sunt do­lis f [...]bricandis ut t [...]mpore noc­turn [...] student & interdiu effici­unt quae noctu agit [...]runt se­cum, &c. are so taken with enticing Dreames, that what they conceit in the night they attempt in the day though it be to their woe: Woe to them that devise iniquity and imagin evil upon their beds, when the morning is light they practise it, because it comes in the power of their hands, Mich. 2. 1. This is incident toQuod valde vo­lumus facile credimus. Men, any thing tending towards that they earnest [...]y desire they easily be­leeve, and what they easily beleeve they earnestly pursue. Hence some have undertaken strange attempts, out of a strange belief of their deluding Dreames, whereby they have brought the hands both of God and men against them. See we what hath been said and done against such Dreamers, Deut. 13.Hae cogitationes quum peccato­res i [...] animum indu [...]erunt cer­tatim ad omne reliq [...]um pec­cati genus ru­unt. Basil. 5. And that Prophet or dreamer of Dreames shall be put to death, because he hath spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God, &c. Thou shalt not conceal him: Thy hand shall be first upon him to [Page 70] put him to death, and after the hand of all the people, ver. 10. Those mischievous men mentioned in Germany, were so transported with their Dreames, and so violent in their bloody wayes, that no power of Gods Word would win them; they were more bent upon Bat­tels than Bibles, and more minded mur­ders and massacres than Scriptures; so that at length, like Sampsons Fox­es, they perished in the fire them­selvesGastius de A­nabaptist. Ex­ord. li. 1. 150000. fue­runt trucidati. kindled; and Goliah-like, were slain by the Sword themselves drew. The Protestant Princes in pitched fields, for their own defence were for­ced to fight them, whereby many thou­sands of them fell.

Object. What is all this to us? men among us in our times are not misled by such lying Dreames, as tend to vio­lence.

Answ. 1. Such Dreames may have taken mens mindes, though it be not yet time to tell them, or by deeds to declare them, untill there be power to effect; policie does use to conceal.

2. With such Dreames the mindes of men may be taken, who can say how [Page 71] soon. Those multitudes which in otherVae, vae, vae eo­rum stupori qui prodigiosa no­stris temporibus portenta non ex­horrescunt, &c. Calvinus of Servetus. matters are now so lamentably misted while awake, may soon be deceived when asleep: God may punish their waking-errors with a belief of sleeping­lies. Those parties of Muncer praecited, first began with opposing opinions in point of Baptisme against the publike Magistracy and Ministry; and after encouraged with delusive Dreames, they proceeded to such pernicious pra­ctises as proved their ruine. Yea 'tis memorable and most remarkeable a­mongst that sort of men, the Dreames with which for a while they seduced di­vers, did condemn all wayes of forceSolet Daemon in suis pseud opro­phetis. & aliis impiis Imposto­ribus somnia excitare ut olim inter Gentes. Multa talia somnia nostro e­tiam tempore multis impiis praesertim Ana­baptistis & Ba­ptistis a Satana missa. Hier. Zanch. Tract. de Divinat. and violence, and did commend onely spirituall means to mannage the pre­tended minde of God. One Melchior Hophman a Skinner or Glover in Swed­land, reported that God in a Dreame had to him revealed, that Strasburg in Germany was appointed to be the New Jerusalem, the Holy City; and that himself and some others should repair thither, and from thence have a Hea­venly call to be Apostles, and to preach the Gospel to all the World, and so in a [Page 72] short time to subdue millions to Christ Postea oritur Propheta novus aurifex, is, con­vocata multi­tudine comme­morat patris caelestis hoc esse insomniis man­datum ut ar­matis homini­bus imperium totius orbis ter­rarum Joannes Leidensis ob­tineat, Templa diripiunt aedifi­cia incendunt—magno numero libri deportati flamma fuerunt absumpti, & haec etiam man­data divinitus accepisse dice­bat idem Pro­pheta. by their ministry through the power of the Spirit, without any outward force or use of arms, by which means very many were misled. Yet mark: not long after, one John Tuscoverer a Goldsmith of Warendorp published his Dreame, That it was the will of the Heavenly Father, all the present publike per­sons in the Magistracy and Ministry, as oppressors, should by power for­ceably be removed, and that John of Leyden should be the King of the whole world, and for that purpose all of them ought presently to appear in their Arms; which accordingly they did by thousands, who in their hostilities used many acts of cruelties, not only breaking down Churches, burning Christian Books and buildings, but bar­barously imbruing their hands in the blood of divers. O the monstrous and miserable delusions of many multi­tudes in former dayes through lying Dreames, so as severall parts of the earth and times of the world were fill'd with violence; and why may not such Dreames with such dreadfull effects, be [Page 73] found in following times? 'Twas the expression of an eminent Expositor upon that place of the Prophet, Jeremy 23. 25. I have heard saith the Lord what lies they prophecie in my Name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed. TheEt qui [...] vide­mus huic malo semper obnox­iam fuisse Ec­clesiam, non est quod hodie tur­bemur si idem accidat quod novum non est. Church of God (says he) hath ever been obnoxious to men misled in this man­ner, and therefore we should not think it strange nor be much troubled, if at this day severall such are seen. Even we our selves already see severall in strange opinions and practises strongly transported, God knows what we or others after us shall see: 'Tis meet we use the best means we may to prevent all false Dreames.

Now the means meet to be observed are of two sorts;

  • Some Negative,
  • Some Positive.

Negative; Proposing what we are not to doe; &

Positive, Reporting what is fit to be done.

1. Things that men must not do who would secure themselves from deceitfull Dreames; as namely;

  • [Page 74]Not harbour fit Matter for them, &
  • Not hearken to the Promoters of them.

1. Matter for such Dreames men must not harbour: The Devil could never do so much upon the mindes of men either sleeping or waking, but that he findes fit matter therein to work up­on: He there perceives a [...], a seed-plot of all sinne, there is [...] a generall tendancy or bent in the soul to sinnes of all sorts. Satan sees mens sinfull propensions and provisions, how the wood and the Altar is ready, and so he brings the Sacrifice.: He puts in the ciens, but the stock grows upon mans own ground. When Satan sends in his suggestion, and it meets with a heart full of corruption, strange things are wrought both day and night. As Satan, so Sinne never slumbers nor sleeps, but when mans body is at rest, they be both awake and at work in wicked Dreames.Caus [...] corrup­ [...]elarum non il­lecebri [...]—sed in cordibus ha­ben [...]s—& vi­tio [...]i [...]s nostra est mens nostra. Salvian de Gu­bern. Dei. lib. 6. The way to interrupt the Devils work is, to bereave him of what he cannot work without: Not to nourish or che­rish the deceits of sinne, least thereby men furnish and establish the designs of Satan.

[Page 75]2. To men promoting false Dreames do not hearken: Thou shalt not hearken to that Prophet or dreamer of Dreames, Deut. 13. 5. Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him, ver. 8.

Not consent.] This concerns the in­wardDiaboli decipi­entis calliditas & hominis con­sentientis vo­luntas, &c. August. de pec­cat. origi. li. 2. c. 37. mind, the yeeldings of which gives great advantage unto Dreames of de­ceit, and to seducers of all sorts. Satan himself could not have such success in his deceiving wiles, but through mens consenting wills. Thou shalt not consent.

Nor hearken.] This forbids the open­ing of the outward ear. By the door of the ear enemies oft get into the house of the heart, and make wild work with­in. Thou shalt not consent nor hearken: Thou shalt not hearken that thou maist not consent. By hearing seducers set outAlloquitur hic totum populum, quia nonnulli erant qui sub specie & colore Prophetici spi­ritus vaticini [...] proferent. Et alii erant qui maxime ap­petunt & invi­tant. Calvin. in loc. their Dreames, how soon have some consented and been deceived? Jer. 29. 8. Thus saith the Lord of Hosts the God of Israel, Let not your Prophets nor your Diviners in the midst of you deceive you, nor hearken to your Dreames which ye cause to be dreamed.

Your Dreames.] They were the Pro­phets Dreames, they conceived them [Page 76] and recited them, yet they were the peoples Dreames, in that they received them and encouraged them. Diodate upon the place observes, that these people were so bent upon bewitching Dreames, that they gave their false Prophets bribes to bring them, large rewards for lying reports; or at least they so flattered those who found them Dreames, that they made many to be dreamed. But saith the Lord, Let not such Dreamers deceive you, nor hearken, &c. The best way to stop errors, is to stop ears, not to hear them; and the best way to hinder deceits, is not to hearken to deceivers: Deceivers areConcinnarunt menda [...]ia. Va­tablus. the Devils Brokers, that trim up his old rotten raggs, and sell them off for new cloathes. They make fine their fals­hoods, as the phrase is, using many brave words to put off their bad wares. But do not hearken.

1. Observe what we must do to­wards freedom from false Dreams; viz.

  • Love the Truth of God, &
  • Fear the God of Truth.

1. Love to the truth of God, is a good defence against all false ways, false [Page 77] Doctrines, false Dreames. O let usAma [...]t verita­tem lucentem splen [...]entem & [...]derunt verita­tem calentem, urent [...]m, redar­guent [...]m. Aug. conf. li. 10. ca. 22. Quia Ana­baptistae [...] ve [...]i­etate Evangelii avertunt aures, ideo Deus mit­ti [...] illis Doctores non qui ulc [...]ra sanarent ser­monibus suis sed qui s [...]m­niis suis fal­lacibus sca­biem scalperent, Gastius de ex­ord. Anabap. pa. 495. love Truth, all Truth, not onely shi­ning Truth, but burning Truth. Some (says Austin) they love Truth that beams Light, but not Truth which brings heat, &c. Truth that is most warning, is best arming, and best defends from all fals­hoods: The want of this love to Truth, lays men naked to beleeve lies. They received not the Truth in the love thereof. For this cause God gave them up to strong delusions to beleeve a lye, 2 Thes. 2. 11.

2. Fear towards the God of Truth, this is a good Antidote against▪ Satans poison, preventing the vanities of de­luding Dreames. In the multitude of Dreames there be divers vanities, but fear thou God, Eccl. 5. 7. Tertullian tells of some unsound heads, who that they might the better introduce their sedu­cing Doctrines, they denied that God was to be feared: Which wicked Er­rour that Worthy Writer does fully con­fute;Ʋbi Deus non timetur, ibi non est: & ubi Deus non est, nec ve­ritas ulla est, &c. Tertul. de praesi. advers. haere [...]. c. 43. concluding, That where God is not feared, there is no Truth well fenced. But men laying all open to erroneous con­ceits and deceits, their hearts as houses are soon filled with falshoods, when the [Page 78] true fear of God is gone from the door. Such a fear of God as brings forth obedience to all Gods commands, is an excellent means against all Dreame­deceits and deceivers, as is manifest by that of▪ Moses in Deut. 13. If there arise among you a Prophet, or a dreamer of Dreames—Ye shall walk after the Lord your God and fear him, and keep all his Commandements, &c. Men who so fear God, as with all care to keep to all the Commandements of God, become most safe from the deceivings of Satan. But as those who are wholly fearless, casting off all care towards all Gods Comman­dements; so those who fear God but in part, having a care only toward some Commandements of God, but in othersIn paradiso mandavit Deus Adae ut custo­diret mandata sed fortasse non mandaverat custodire omnia, ideo deceptus a Serpente pu­tans quod si in parte aliqua re­cederet a man­datis non, &c. Ambros. Serm. 1. in Psal. 67. remain remiss, all such Satan may soon deceive. God appointed Adam in Pa­radise (says Ambrose) to keep his Com­mandements, but perhaps not expressing his exactness in keeping all, he thought he might swerve from some, and so by the Serpent was soon deceived.

So that the safest course to secure our souls from Satans Deceits in delu­sive Dreames, is to fear God, and with [Page 79] the utmost care we can, to keep unto Gods whole commanding-word; for the want of which divers have been decei­ved by Satan in deluding Dreames: and how soon may we in the same case mis­carry, and through Satans subtilties in our sleep mistake. As in the night-time Laban deluded Jacob, bringing to his bed blear-eyed Leah for beautifull Ra­chel; so in the night the Devil hath de­ceived divers, bringing to them in sleep ugly lies for lovely Truths. And let us not think the Devil is grown idle or simple, but is as subtill and sedulous, night and day industrious in all delusive ways, that thereby he may

  • Hold up the falling Seat of the Beast, &
  • Hold down the Rising Throne of Christ.

False Dreames driven on by the Devil to this double end, are of two sorts;

  • Some in sleeping Men, &
  • Some in Men awake.

These latter many fall under that are yet free from the former; and the for­mer those are in danger of who are mis­led by the latter: False Dreames found in many waking men are manifest:

  • [Page 80]As wrong opinions in themselves,
  • And high presumptions of themselves.

1. Men within themselves have ma­ny opinions that be but meer false Dreames, viz. That God sees no sinne in his servants. That Christ having sa­tisfied Gods Justice, sinne shall never be punished. Christ having wrought mans Righteousness, good works are needless to be done. If God hath ap­pointed men to life, they need use no means. Men may do evil that good may come thereby. Impulses of Spirit, and successes of Providence, are more to be minded than Rules of Scrip­ture, &c.

These are False Dreames.

2. Some of themselves have such presumptions as are assuredly but de­ceiving Dreames; and these do either concern

  • Sinne, or
  • Grace.

1. Concerning Sinne: We may see severall sorts presuming,

  • Some that they are free from it, &
  • Others that they shall do well in it.

1. Many imagin themselves to be [Page 81] free from sin, which is a Soul-deceivingOmnis habens peccatum san­ctus non est: et­si nullus sanctus vacuus est pec­cato. Aug. de Eccles. dogmat. Dreame. If we say we have no sinne, we deceive our selves and there is no truth in us, 1 Joh. 1. 8. yet so severall say that they have no sinne

  • Originall, or
  • Actuall.

Originall sinne they be born with­out: That sinne is a blow never given to their nature, a blot that never fell on their faces, a moth that never took their garments. As for the sinne of Adam, the sinne of Parents, remote or imme­diate, they say as the High-Priests touching the Treason of Judas, What is that to us?

2. Actuall sinne they live without: Their tongues can speak apace and not stammer, their feet can run swift and not stumble, they can act body and soulSi nos non filii, qua fronte dici­mus, Pater no­ster qui es in coelis? & si nos non peccatores, quare depreca­mur, Dimitte nobis debita nostra? Aug. de verb. Apostol. Serm. 29. without sinne; their lives are as strait lines without bending,; their works be as Books that have no Erra­taes; they are set into such an estate, wherein not onely they do not sinne, but wherein they cannot sinne:

These are false Dreames.

2. Severall there be who persist in [Page 82] sinne, yet conceive they shall do well: Either they do divers good things, and they shall satisfie for the bad; their good works shall recompence and an­swer for their evil deeds, or otherwise they have power and purpose to repent of sinne hereafter▪ or else they plead God is mercifull, and Christ died for sin­ners: Or they think because God in his greatness is so high, that he takes no particular notice of mans miscarriages here below: Or they conceive, because God is silent, he is such a one as themselves; or they have seen severall proceed in sinne, whom God hath prospered and favoured, and so they ex­pect the same: or they have excuses, evasions, distinctions, through which they pass with men, and doubt not but to do with God the same, with severall such like conceits.

These are false Dreames.

2. As concerning Grace, severall un­sanctified men imagin,

  • They are encreased in it, &
  • They shall be Crowned for it.

1. In Grace they think they have large encreasings: Men who are mise­rably [Page 83] empty of what ever is savinglyRev. 3. 17. Di­cis dives sum] De jactantia opum spiri­tualium recte intelligitur. Hypocritae se justos esse & Dei gratia egre­gie sanctos nec peccatorum ve­nia coram Deo egere arbitran­tur. Paraeus in locum. good, yet confidently conclude, that in respect of spirituall good things, they have not only the reality thereof, but be rich therein: I am rich and encreased in goods and lack nothing, said the Lao­dicean Church as she lay in a deluding Dreame, upon mistake of her spirituall estate, Rev. 3. 17.

2. Upon their grants of Grace they expect Crowns of Glory, having high hopes of Heavenly-happiness: They lay such weight upon their religious works, as to look for glorious rewards, wondrous priviledges, rich inheri­tances; great things for them a com­ing, not onely in Heaven, but even on Earth a temporall Kingdom, a terre­striall Paradise; all present Powers pul­led down, themselves set up, possessing seats of Honour, places of pleasure, un­known freedoms, felicities:

These are false Dreames.

These Dreames of waking men be doors to sleeping Dreames; and how soon may men fall from one false Dreame to another: the best course then to keep out any, is to keep off all.

[Page 84]To conclude in this case; I shall only call to a double duty;

  • Of Prayer,
  • And Praise.

1. Prayer to God, that night and day he would be our firm defence against all false Dreames; that God would not suffer Satan to deceive us, nor leave us to beleeve his lies: That still the Lord would deliver us, and not let us be led into such temptations; nor let such temptations overtake us to turn us aside.

2. Praise to God who hath hitherto freed us from false Dreames, keeping us cleer from Satans deceits and subtill sleights. O what a mighty mercy hathNon omnes Sa­tan suis falla­ciis & menda­ciis involver [...] aut opprimere potest gratiis De [...] agere de­bemus. Vid. Calv. in locum. God manifested, in preventing of and preserving us from the dangerous delu­sions of lying Dreames. 2 Thess. 2. We see how the Apostle expressing the sad punishment of some, Who receiving not the Truth in the love of it, God gave them up to strong delusions to beleeve a lie, ver. 11. He proceeds to ponder­ing the privilege of others, and so breaks out: But we are bound brethren, beloved of the Lord, to give thanks [Page 85] always to God for you, because God hath chosen you to salvation through sanctifi­cation of the Spirit and belief of the truth, ver. 13. High honour is indeed due to the Divine Majesty for this marvel­lous mercy, and therefore unto him be all glory for ever and ever.


III. Of Filthy and Defiling DREAMES.

JUDE Ver. 8.‘Likewise notwithstanding these filthy Dreamers also defile the flesh.’

AT the entrance of this un­dertaken Treatise touching sinfull Dreams, we divided such into these two sorts;

  • Some Deluding, &
  • Some Defiling.

Now that no man may mistake, takeHoc uno artifi­cio somniorum constat, Ethnicos olim multipli [...]i­ter fuisse delu­sos & macula­tos & in impu­ritate obfirma­tos. Magir. in Physol. lib. 6. c. 15. that division with this concession: to wit, We grant that deluding Dreames do defile, and that defiling Dreames do delude; but though on both sides they have the same ill influence, yet be­tween them there is an undoubted dif­ference. Dreames closely deluding en­ter more into mans Intellectuall part, [Page 87] corrupting his judgment, and perverting him in his opinions. Dreames grosly defiling, do more seize on mans Sensi­tive part, polluting his affections with fleshly impressions; whereupon such Dreames may well be handled distinct­ly. Having therefore done discourse about those false deluding Dreames wherein the Devil hath an industrious hand: I now enter another discourse about filthy and defiling Dreames, for the effecting of which Satan is found with some very sedulous. And for this purpose I have enterprized this per­tinent passage of the precious Apostle Jude; Likewise these filthy Dreamers notwithstanding defile the flesh.

The present words are two wayes considerable,

  • In their Dependance, &
  • In their Substance.

1. For their dependance as they refer to somewhat foregoing. We may finde in the verse before, mention made of the miserable and sensuall Sodomites, as expresly reporting,

  • Their ways of Sinne, &
  • Gods ways of Punishment.

[Page 88]1. Their ways of Sinne, against God and amongst themselves, were exceed­ing sinfull: They gave themselves over to filthiness, and went after strange flesh, ver. 7.

2. Gods ways of Punishment upon them were wofull, strange and astonish­ing: they burnt out against God with fire fetched from Hell, and God burntGehenna de caelo. Salvian. de Guber. Dei. lib. 1. up them with a fire flung from Heaven, as Salvian observes: which fire was but a figure of that infernal fire into which they were eternally cast. They are set forth for an ensample, suffering the ven­geance of eternal fire, ver. 7.

After this he instantly adds, ver. 8. Likewise notwithstanding these filthy Dreamers also defile the flesh. The Sodo­mites sad and sinfull case so premised, here is the sinne of another sort pro­posed,

  • Both as Assimilated,
  • And as Aggravated.

1. Assimilated, or as resembling the sinne of the Sodomites: They were filthy sinners in flesh-defilements: Likewise these filthy Dreamers defile the flesh.

[Page 89]2. Aggravated, or as transcending the sinne of the Sodomites. What fear­full sinners the Sodomites were, not only the Scriptures, but Josephus andJoseph. Antiq. lib. 1. other Writers report. They were in a fleshly way such foul offenders, as God fearfully punished them with fire eter­nal: yet these were not afraid for all that, but followed their filthy lusts, though those Sodomites suffered for their foul and fleshly sins, yet these were not warned, restrained, bounded; but broke out (notwithstanding) into their filthy defilements: Likewise not­withstanding these filthy Dreamers de­file the flesh. This concerns the Cohe­rence.

2. The Substance or the words con­sidered as in themselves, their principall parts are two:

  • The Subject, &
  • The Predicate.

First, For the Subject or persons here spoken of, they are said to be Dreamers of some filthy sort: Those fil­thy Dreamers.

Secondly, The Predicate, or what is spoken of these persons; their flesh­defiling [Page 90] is affirmed: These filthy Dream­ers defile the flesh.

Concerning the Subject-Persons which here the holy Apostle proposes [filthy Dreamers] we shall enquire,

  • What the Dreamers were, &
  • What their filthiness was.

The Dreamers here meant are of aHi somniantes earnem macu­lant non ui [...] modo sed varie prout varios ex­cogitabant libi­dinum modos, &c. Estius in loc. sinfull sort, which more generally con­sidered, are such who while asleep have foul imaginations that fill their mindes. Now as there be two sorts of sleepers that Dreame; so there be two sorts of bad Dreamers in sleep:

  • Some so Metaphorically, &
  • Some Physically so.

1. Metaphorically: so all in their sin­full estate are said to be asleep, and in their sleep to have sinfull Dreames. Natures-time is night-time, and in the time of this night-darkness men have their night-Dreames:

  • As some false and foolish,
  • So some foul and filthy.

False and foolish Dreames about worldly matters: Their inward thought is, their houses shall endure for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations, [Page 91] Psal. 49. 11. These be foolish Dreamers. [...]aetatur stultus in fructibus ip­sa nocte moritu­rus & cui vita jam deerat vi­ctus abundan­tiam somniat. Cypr. de Orat. Domini. Such another Dreamer was he Luk. 12. 17. And he thought within himself, what shall I do? for I want room to lay my fruits. I will pull down my barns and build greater: I will say to my soul, Thou hast goods laid up for many years, take thine ease. But God soon awaked him out of his Dreame, with a Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee, &c.

Foul and filthy Dreames about wic­ked matters, and for satisfaction of sin­full lusts: Such Dreamers are evident, Exod. 15. 9. And the enemy said within himself, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil, and my lust shall be satisfied, &c. And we read of some such Dreamer, Deut. 29. 19. He blesseth him­self in his heart saying, I shall have peace though I walk in the imagination of mine own mind, and add drunkenness to thirst. These are Dreames and Dream­ers found in a figurative sense, and for such the greatest part of antient Writers did usually interpret the Text.

2. In a Physicall sense, for such as are in their natural sleep, and therein pro­perly [Page 92] Dreamers. The Dreamers here meant, were of some singular sort, and therefore not to be taken in a common and promiscuous sense. All sinners are Dreamers: but the Dreamers the Apostle here points at, were such as some sinfull men are not, so much the demonstrative Pronoun imports [ [...]] These, these Dreamers▪ Others sleep as these do, but in sleep these Dreame as others do not: These Dreamers. This additionall word [isti] intimates they were no ordinary Dreamers, but such Dreamers they were, as when their sleeping bodies upon their beds were at reall rest, their waking mindes in a most wicked way were hard at work. Thus some former Writers did unfold this place of the Apostle, as Estius and others report, and thus severall of our later Divines interpret the Text, as no­tingGaign [...]eus putat Apostolum hoc loco alludere ad illusiones & nocturnas pollu­tiones, &c. [nocturnall pollutions] through filthy workings of mens mindes in the time of their night-sleepes, as in their Annotations we see.

2. To discover these Dreamers as referring to their filthiness [filthy Dreamers,] though the Greek copies [Page 93] commonly want the word [filthy,] yet 'tis supposed, and well supplied by our English translations; Their affirmed de­filing property, proveth the persons of these Dreamers to be filthy: were theyHi somniatores ad impurita­tem projecti sunt, unò ad om­nem turpitudi­nem se prostitu­unt. Calv. in loc. not filthy, they could not defile; they do defile, therefore they be filthy.

For the more unfolding the infolded filthiness of these Dreamers, observe severall things:

  • Some as from former Expositors, &
  • Some as further Expounding.

1. Former Expositors have read the present words in a double way;

  • Some Passively, &
  • Some Actively.

Passively: As if herein onely others were Actors and themselves rather Suf­ferers, so Vatablus, Erasmus, Aretius render the word, translating it in their Latin language after a differing phrase, [ [...]] that is,

1. Delusi in somniis; Men bewitch­ed, beguiled, befooled, besotted in Dreames, imaginations that be meerLege Aug. Mar­lorat. in locum. seductions, sinfull conceptions, certain illusions.

2. Demersi in somniis; Men drown­ed [Page 94] in filthy Dreames as in puddle water, or sticking as in deep dirt, overwhelmed as in mud and mire, plunged into pits of pollutions.

3. Devicti in somniis; Vanquished and subdued by Dreames; Men whom the Devil as a conquerour having taken in their night-quarters, are by him car­ried away captive.

Actively: As if not so much others were Actors, as themselves rather mo­vers herein and workers hereof, so Pa­raeus, Piscator, Calvin and other Com­mentators Videtur istud participium adjectum ad amplificandum libidinem isto­rum ut quae sese in illis etiam dormientibus exerat. Piscat. in locum. carry the meaning of the Apostle, expressing it by a Participle that imports a present act of the Dream­ers part, rendring the word [ [...],] somniantes, or in somniando, or inter somniandum, &c. all intimate, men them­selves acting in and affecting of these filthy Dreames. The Devil set aside, they are Dreamers filthy, and filthy in Dreaming.

2. These Dreamers filthiness I shall yet further unfold;

  • As referring to Sinne, &
  • As referring to Satan.

Filthiness as referring to Sinne is two­fold.

  • [Page 95]The filthiness of Sinne, &
  • The Sinne of filthiness.

1. Filthiness of Sinne: This is in ge­nerall applicable to all sinne, all sinne having this common name to be called filthiness, and all such filthiness of what sinne soever, may be acted over in the thoughts of mans minde; and that not only during the day and when he is a­wake, but also in the night time asSomniando co­gitat, & cogi­tando ruminat & ruminando delectatur. Aug. concio. 3. in Psal. 36. he lies asleep, his minde may be mo­ving and roving upon, delighting and solacing himself in thoughts of Luxury, Gluttony, Avarice, Envy, Pride, Prodi­gality, &c.

2. The Sinne of filthiness: Or that particular sinne of uncleanness strictly so called. This is a deep ditch or puddle­pit, into which a man may be miserably plunged by the meer imaginations of his minde, Matth. 5. 28. As a man that hath no body with him, when abroad, may at mid-day be an adulterer in the adulterous thoughts of his heart: so a man that hath no body with him in his bed, may in the sleeping time of the night, be adulterously naught by the filthy Dreames of his minde: and com­monly [Page 96] those filthinesses that a mans minde is fixed upon in the day when a­wake, will visit him in the night, finde him out and fasten upon him in his sleep.

2. As referring to Satan that filthyNon dicitur Di­abolo ut dam­netur quia a­dulterium com­misisti, &c. Aug. l. de Dis­cip. Christi. c. l. Justin Mart. ad qu. 24. or­th [...]dox. Aug. li. 18. de Civ. Dei. ca. 18. and unclean spirit, who hath no little hand in such loathsome Dreames. The Devil indeed not having a body himself, cannot commit bodily filthine [...]s, but he can conform himself so to the phantasie; as to further this mental filthiness in and with others. Very strange things (as to appearance) men may do by the power of Satan, so severall Sorcerers have ex­ceeded, as Justin Martyr, Austin and Others report things very strange. And may not Satan by himself immediately mannage marvellous matters, causing shapes and forms to appear of all kinds of creatures, as to mans ocular part or his eye without: Pliny, Philostratus andPlin. li. 35. cap. 11. Philostrat. li. 4. Val. Max. li. 1. ca. ult. de simulachris. others, give severall instances herein: So to mans imaginary power interpose himself, causing things and persons to appear to the putative faculty effecting these filthy Dreames. He that came in Samuels Robe in the Serpents form, yea [Page 97] transforming himself as an Angel of Light to men awake, may not he come in other ways and manners to men asleep? He that can appear as a roar­ing Lion, to affright a waking Chri­stian; cannot he present himself as an enticing Damsell, to affect a sleeping man, and to effect these filthy Dreames? We read of the rich man in the Parable, He thought within himself saying, What Quid faciam? interrogantis vox est, & quem put as interroga­bat iste. Erat in illo Diabolus, & ille, &c. Chrysolog. Serm. 104. shall I do, &c. 'Tis the voice of one ask­ing a question: And who (says a good Author) do you think he did ask? Though really no body was by, yet the Devil being in him, could soon make him conceit some body with him. As a man in his ordinary Dreames ima­gins he hath his friends about him con­ferring together; so in filthy Dreames man imagins his mates about him and consorts with him: And thus filthiness not fit to be named is nourished. So we see the first Phrase unfolded [filthy Dreamers,] these are the Subject-Per­sons of the Apostles speech.

2. The Predicate, What is spoken of these Persons; viz. [They defile the flesh.] And herein we are to unfold,

  • [Page 98]What is the flesh that is defiled? &
  • What is that defiling of the flesh?

1. The flesh defiled, or the flesh they do defile, is taken in a two-fold sense,

  • Either as referring to others,
  • Or as reflecting upon themselves.

1. Flesh as to others referring: SoEpiphan. in haeresi [...]nostico­rum. [...]ecumen. in Commenta­riis suis. Epiphanius and Oecumenius seem to carry the sense, as if some others were concerned in this Dream-defilement: And they may take up some cause to colour such an Interpretation of flesh from the verse preceding that concerns the Sodomites, who in their filthy ways are said [...], &c. Others flesh they filthily followed after defiling one another: and these are said to resemble them; Likewise these filthy Dreamers defile the flesh. But the aspect of the similitude may be upon the act defiling, rather then upon the object defiled. Or if the object be considered in a generall sense, flesh on all sides was surely defiled: These de­filed the flesh and so did the Sodomites; the Sodomites defiled the flesh and so did these: But that these Dreamers did defile, carnem alteram seu alienam, [Page 99] I conceive is a meer mistake. Clemens Non aliud som­niant quam spurcas libidi­nes, & impuras cupiditates i­maginationibus su [...]. lib. 3. Stromatum. Alexandrinus excellently and confi­dently, besides the greatest part of others the best Expositors, interpret these filthy Dreamers to be Mentall sinners, men sinfull by imaginations and thoughts, the evil of which do not di­rectly reach to the wronging and defi­ling of others: We may be harmed by mens outward words and deeds, but yet receive no reall prejudice by their in­ward thoughts. 'Tis sure (says Austin)Res vera, ille vivit, tu tamen homicida, illa casta, tu tamen adulter. Aug. de verb. Dom. 42, & 43. thou may be a murderer yet the man alive, thou may be an adulterer yet the woman chast, &c. because while these things are onely in thoughts, a mans neigh­bour is never the worse. Mens mischie­vous and adulterous thoughts when a­wake, work no immediate ill to others, much less such thoughts in men asleep. Flesh as referring to others is not defiled by filthy dreamers.

2. Reflecting on themselves, flesh defiled is two ways taken;

  • Either as more limited,
  • Or as more enlarged.

1. Limited and more strictly, the flesh they defile is their own bodies, so [Page 100] runs the most Orthodox CommentatorsIta Beza Ma­jor. Au [...]. A [...]et. Pise. Paraeus, &c. I [...]o & E­stius in locum. in a united current; carnem maculant, i. e. corpus suum polluunt; they pollute their own bodies. The flesh may more immediatly mean the body, the body being most properly the fleshie part: And in filthy Dreames the bodies of men may be actually concerned and so certainly defiled

2. Enlarged and more fully, the flesh they defile is the whole man both body and soul. Defilement in Dreames does not fasten upon the body barely, but setles upon the soul also. And this adds much to the mischief of such filthy Dreames, that the soul or minde, mans most precious part is by this means polluted. And undoubtedly if theseQuid immun­dius qua [...] ment [...]m qu [...] ni­hil homini pre­ti [...]sius datum, turpibus com­ [...]a [...]ulare cri­minibus? Amb. Dreames do defile mens bodies, their hearts and mindes pass not free from defilement; for sinne which defiles one does defile both: body and soul must needs receive the same defilement,

  • From their close connexion, &
  • From sinnes strong contagion.

1. Their connexion, union and mu­tuall dependance in being and working, does assure their reciprocall sympathy [Page 101] in each others harms, and joint partaking of each others sufferings.

2. Sinnes contagion is such as con­cludes this: The poisonous power, the venomous and vitious quality of sinne is such as cause the same. Sinne is such a Gangrene, as seizing upon one part soon corrupts the whole: As the sinnes of the soul bubble up and break out in the body, so the sinnes of the body soak and sink down into the soul; so that in filthy Dreames both body and soul are defiled.

Quest. If the whole man be defiled, why then is onely flesh named?

Answ. In this matter most fitly may flesh bear the name, for

  • From the flesh all this comes, &
  • Through this all becomes flesh.

1. From the flesh it comes, that men have such filthy Dreames as does defile them: Flesh is the fountain, the causa Aquin. 3a. pars. Quaest. 54. Art. 3. 1. sine quanon. The Devil could never fasten filthy defiling thoughts upon men asleep or awake, were it not for flesh he findes in them. Hence all Sa­tans temptations towards Christ, were onely by proposing things outward, not [Page 102] impressing any inward evil. The Prince Quomodò in illo invenit ni­hil? in ubertate sapientiae, inte­gritate justitiae, &c. Christus non vacuus sed Di­abolus caecus, qui nescit nisi sua cernere. Ambr. de fuga saeculi. ca. 4. of this world comes (says Christ of the Devil) and finds nothing in me. No­thing! (says Ambrose) O Lord in thee are treasures of wisdom, in thee is the holy Ghost above measure; in thee is the fullness of the Godhead bodily, &c. Ai, but the Devil could finde nothing to fit his work, no flesh in him out of which he could cause one bad motion in his minde sleeping or waking, neither by night or day. The Devil indeed when he comes to men, findes flesh inCaro sicut est fons vit iositatis invita, ita est radix & origo omnivm prava­rum cogitatio­num in corde. Chen▪ nit. Harm. Evang. them. All men are not in the flesh; but in them all have flesh, out of which the Devil setches filthy thoughts, and draws forth defiling Dreames. The flesh is the first root and chief spring, out of which proceeds these puddle­streames, &c.

2. By such filthy Dreams the wholeQui secundum corporis appeten­tiam vivit caro est, etiam ani­ma caro est. Amb. Sic dediti sunt carni de si nihil aliud quamcar­nem se esse re­putarent. man is made flesh: hereby he is even as nothing but flesh, flesh. Isa. 31. 3. 'tis said of the Aegyptians, Their horses are flesh and not spirit. So of such men may it be said, Their hearts are flesh, and not spirit. To have a heart of flesh may be a mighty mercy, but to have a fleshly [Page 103] heart, or a heart that is but flesh, is a manifest misery: [...]: the minde of the flesh, is the Apostles phrase, Col. 2▪ 18. Mans minde by fleshly defilings, as it becomes filthy, so it becomes flesh­ly. As the Devil is in himself of a spi­rituall Diabolus etsa sit spiritus, agit tamen opera carnis. Aug▪ de Civitat. Dei. lib. 14. nature, yet (says Austin) he does the deeds of the flesh, &c. so mans minde that is of a spirituall being, yet in filthy Dreaming it hath a fleshly working, and as it were works it self into flesh, being comprised in that flesh which is defiled. These filthy Dreamers defile the flesh.

2. What this flesh-defiling meanes, is manifest by marking

  • What it Supposeth, &
  • What it Compriseth.

This defiling supposeth concerning such Dreames,

  • That within they are sinnes, &
  • That they are sinnes from within.

1. Sinnes they are as within them­selvesAquin. 12ae. Quaest. 86. Art. 1. considered, in that they certainly defile; for as there is no sinne but de­files, so there is no defilement but by sinne. As whatever is sinne defiles, so whatever defiles is sinne. Poverty, im­prisonment, [Page 104] punishments and the most fearfull afflictions that can befall a man do not defile a man, onely sinne.

2. Sinnes they are from within, forExterna pecca­ta sunt majoris infamiae. Sed peccata interna sunt majoris maculae & rea­tus. Aquin. Solicitor nullos esse putare Deos. Ovid. such sinnes do most immediately and monstrously defile, as we finde Matth. 15. 19. Out of the heart proceeds evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, these are the things that defile a man. There be men that imagin no sinne in any thoughts, but that thoughts and ima­ginations are free: whereas freedom for imaginations is but an imaginary free­dom. Sure there is no freedom for sinne, evil thoughts whether in men awake or asleep are sinnes, as is proved by their defiling property. There be men who may grant some thoughts to be sinnes, as thoughts of Atheisme, Blasphemy, and the like, when men are awake; but thoughts of adultery, fornication, when men are asleep and in their Dreames, are no sinnes with them; whereas sinnes surely they are, as their defiling implies.

2. This defiling of the flesh is found to comprize

  • The parts of Sinne, &
  • The effects of Sinne.

[Page 105]The parts of sinne are comprised in the defiling of these Dreames,

  • As an aversion from God,
  • And a conversion to Satan.

1. God, herein men turn from, who is reall goodness and raised excellence, rare in Majesty and rich in mercy: now man becomes unclean when he thus declines: When ever (says Austin) the Anima quae for­nicata est a Deo, casta esse non potest, &c. Aug. advers. Julia. lib. 4. heart goes a whoring from God, how can it be clean? As departure causes defi­ling, so defiling implies departure.

2. Satan, men herein turn to, beta­king themselves to his enticing for­geries, and hugging his shadowes, and bowing down to his Images, embracing the representations he tenders. Satan makes a sinfull mans bed, his nest in which he lays most loathsome eggs, which yet the sinner sits over, adding his own warmth to brood and bring them forth, this his defiling act in­folds.

2. The effects of sinne are found in­folded herein:

  • As somewhat privative,
  • And somewhat positive.

1. Privative, or a further depriving [Page 106] themselves of primitive amability and beauty: Thus man is made more re­mote from his first purity, glory, excel­lency and immaculate innocency.

2. Positive, or a further imprinting of deeper deformity and greater impurity through the pollution of Dreames. The Schoolmen discoursing of sinne, do still [...]eat of two things, macula & reatus, In quolibet pec­cato sunt s [...]il. macula culpae & reatus poen [...]. Aquinas 3 par. Q [...]st. 22. art. 3. filth and guilt: The former is the black­ness of sinne that takes away mans lustre, the latter is the bondage of sinne that takes away mans liberty; hereby he is bound over to death and Hell; both follows upon filthy Dreames: for whatever casts under filth, brings under guilt. Every sinne as it stains a man and leaves him under blots: so it stabs a man and leaves him in his blood. Fil­thy Dreames that defile, though these effects are secret and unseen, yet that makes them never the less but the worse: The outward sins of waking men lay blots and blows upon them in the eye of the world, but these inward sins of sleeping men lay blows and blots Psal. 139. 2, 3. Matth. 6. 6. upon them in the sight of God who sees in secret. Sinfull Dreames leave [Page 107] black blots, they be as deep stamps and dirty steps of the Devils foul feet. Which foul defilings are further helped forward by filthy Dreamers them­selves. These filthy Dreamers also defile the flesh.

And now having walked through these words in their Explication, I come to some Application from the words in a double way. To wit;

  • Of Instruction, &
  • Of Admonition.

1. Instruction: These filthy defiling Dreames considered, severall lessons many men may learn, that do certainly concern

  • Themselves within, &
  • Others without.

1. Men as within themselves refle­cting, may finde much of their spirituall misery from these fleshly Dreames; of which they may be

  • Both Receptive,
  • And Productive.

1. Of such Dreames to be receptive is sad: For a man to be as a noisome sink into which gathers all such filthy mud: to be as the Devils center in [Page 108] which he makes his black lines to meet.Eum nec Chri­stianum esse nec Judae [...], nec paganum, sed colluviem quan­dam impi [...]tatis, impuritatis. Di [...]itur de Con­stanti [...]. Copro­nymo. Cent. For a mans bed and head to be Satans stage, upon which he brings strange disguised persons to play their parts, whereupon follows such effects as do defile both head and bed. Lev. 15. 26. Deut. 23. 10, 11. For a mans head and heart to be the Devils dung-cart, into which both day and night he throws his dirt and filth, the case of no creature is herein like mans: beasts, swine and poi­sonous Toads, are not receptacles of such stinking dreggs, as filthy Dreames.

2. Of such Dreames to be produ­ctive is yet much worse, when of such sinfull thoughts in sleep Satan may be an assistant, but mans own evil heart herein the chief agent, and hereof the author: Gen. 6. 5. God saw that the whole ima­ginations Ma [...]aru [...] co­g [...]tati [...]num Dia­bolus potest esse adjutor, non au­tem earum au­ctor. Chemnit. Harm. Evan. in Matth. 15. 19. of the thoughts of mans heart were onely evil continually. 'Tis not the imaginations & thoughts in mans heart, quasi ex alio, but the imaginations and thoughts of mans heart, quasi ex seipso, were onely evil [continually] col-haiom, the whole day; which being taken in a naturall sense, does comprise the night as a part thereof: Day and night, mans [Page 109] whole time continually, the imagina­tions of the thoughts of mans heart are some way evil. It may be they do not always amount to such monstrous wickedness as the text intends, but when hitherto they proceed, such sin­full Dreames are the products of mans own evil heart, which is always evil, but may be worst in the night. In the day, by reading, hearing, seeing; by means of others company, counsell, ex­amples, exercises; others good words and works, a wicked man may have many good thoughts moving in his mind: but in the sleeping time of the night, when he hath no such helps, his thoughts may be most notoriously naught. Plutarch reports of a River that runs bright and sweet in the morn­ing, and so remains the day, but it be­gins to run black and bitter in the even­ing, and so all night: with men many times that wickedness which breaks out in the day, was formed and framed in the night. The Prophet reports of some, whose hearts be like a Bakers oven, that is heated and made ready in the night, and in the morning burns as a [Page 110] flaming fire, Hos. 7. 6. But suppose it proceeds no further then filthy Dreams in the night, yet therein a man may see his heart miserably naught: when a man hath not onely a filthy Dream, butNote. is a Dreamer, in this filthiness found not onely actuall but usuall, it mani­fests much misery; such self-pollution being a sad condition: And sadly may such a one say of his sinne, as David did of his sorrow; My sore ranne in the night and ceased not, Psal. 77. 2.

2. As concerning Satan, hereby a man may discern,

  • His Knowledg, &
  • His Diligence.

1. The Devils knowledg by this appears to be great, and that he is inti­mately acquainted with mans case,

  • Both for Body,
    Daemones vi­gent acumine scientiae, multa cognoscunt ex subtilitate natu­rae, multa de ho­minibus ex ob­servatione, &c. Aquin. 1a. Qu. 64. Art. 1, & 2, 3.
  • And for Soul.

1. The state of mans body, he much understands how that is disposed, the parts thereof inclined through its natu­rall constitution, accidentall occasions, assiduall transactions, contracted imper­fections; what propensities, lubricities, imbecillities have seized upon man, and [Page 111] under which he suffers. He knows which way nature, even in corporeal parts is prone to put out it self; and so in flinging the bowl he observes the biass, beating man upon his own ground, and bringing him to much misery.

2. Satan sees much into the state of mans soul. Though the soul as con­cerning its immanent and immediate acts of the principall powers is so lockt up, as the Devil by a direct intuition cannot look therein, or have knowledg thereof, yet he can gather much in an arguitive way, he can make such ani­madversions of matters without, as to discover much within. Mans under­standing makes its parelii or likenesses and resemblances, and these the fancy being neer hand takes in, observes and imitates; and while this is at work the Devil may get the key of this shop, go in, and view the Images that are framed there to set forward his sinfull design: though the Devil cannot create or frame in the fancy any new corporeall species, yet he can discern such simili­tudes and shadows of things as are there already framed; he can call them up, [Page 112] and accordingly conform himself, and so fetch forth a suteable draught of Dreames. Unto filthy apprehensions he can cause filthy apparitions, and pitifully puddle a man in polluting Dreames.

2. The Devils diligence is discern­able therein to be also great, through that filthiness which he sets forward in the night, and those defilements he fastens upon man in his sleep. We read of Edward the first, who being woundedHumano cord [...] antiquus h [...]stis venenum insun­dit. Greg. M [...]r▪ li. 5. ca. 31. with a poisoned knife, the Lady El­nor his wife while he lay asleep, suckt out the poison to preserve his life. But the Devil, that Abaddon Apollyon, that he may destroy, while men lie asleep, he casts in poison, and so pollutes and defiles: he seeks in sleep to slay, by conveying venemous and vitious Dreames. He comes like the Harlot, Prov. 7. 9. In the black and dark night saying, Let us take our fill of love—Poor man follows straight way as a fool to the correction of the stocks, as an Ox to the slaughter, and as a Bird to the snare. The Devil knows he may be interrupt­ed in the day, and therefore will not [Page 113] lose the night time. 'Tis true of Satan which is said of Gideon; What he could not do by day, that he did by night, Judg. 6. 27. Jericho which could not be conquered by day, yet was taken by the ambushments laid, and assaults made in the night, Josh. 8. 6, 7. Satan L [...]ge Lutheruni loc. 49. Quintae Classis de su­perstitionibus, variis fascinis ac praestigii [...] diabolicis. is sedulous in his sinfull assaults upon men:

  • As in every Place,
  • So at every time.

1. No place is free: He meets man at the Church, and at his chamber, and is busie about him both at his board and at his bed.

2. No time is free: If at any time held from sinfull imployment, it seems as his punishment: Stops in his tempta­tions are his vexations: he accounts re­straining his destroying. Art thou come Nos destruere est a nobis pote­statem auferre quam in homi­nes habemus ad tentandum eos. Theoph. in Evan. Marci. to destroy us? say the devils to Christ when they were cast out of man, Mark 1. What is this (saith Theophylact) to destroy us? this is to restrain his tempta­tions from man. At all times he loves liberty herein,

  • Yet then he is most stirring
  • When man is most still.

[Page 114]At such times when man moves least, then the Devil moves most:

  • As when idle in the day,
  • And when asleep in the night.

1. Idle in the day: It hath been everNon est aliqua cogitatio tam turpis tam abo­minabilis mala, & execranda quam non inve­niat otiositas. Gers. de modo habendi se cont. malas immiss. observed, when the Devil finds a man idle, he fills him with his foulest tem­ptations, cogitations; then he im­mits imaginations the worst and most wicked.

2. Asleep in the night: O that is a notable time for his temptations to take: now a sinfull man lies fit forConatur Satan dormie [...]tium corpora impu [...]s somni [...]s polluere, ut ejus foedita­tis etiam ani­mos ex pergis­centium quo­dommodo parti­cipes faciat. Magir. in Phi­siol. li. 6. ca. 15. his motions. Indeed day and night the Devils diligence is great: As he observes men disposed in the day: so he suits his motions at night: And if as the Prince of darkness he can command the night, he looks as Lucifer to carry the day.

I shall conclude what relates to Sa­tan, onely observing that of Luther; Quod ad In­cubos & Suc­cubos Daem [...] ­nes attinet, non nego s [...]d credo [...]osse [...]eri [...]l Daemon sit vel Succubus vel In [...]ubus. who speaking his judgment de Incubis & Succubis, says; That 'tis not to be denied, but certainly to be beleeved, that Satan can ludificari in lecto, &c. and may, permitted of God, take upon him such species forms and shapes, and [Page 115] so subtilly he may convey himself inAudi [...]i multos recitantes sua ipsorum exem­pla. Ac Augusti­nus quooque dicit idem se audi­visse a [...]ide dig­nus hominibus quibus c [...]actus sit credere. Gratum enim Stanae est, si ludisicari nos in h [...]c modum sum [...]tâ specie vel juvenis, vel mulier culae possit. Potest ludificar i homines proph [...]n [...]s & sine Dei timore viventes, ut cum Daemon in lecto sit▪ existimet adole [...]cens se habere puellam, aut puella adolescentein. time of sleep, as to make the phantasies of sinfull men imagin most sordid mat­ters; and so (says Luther) Austin and other men of good repute do assert the same, viz. That Satan so cunning­ly can in such wicked ways and man­ners deceive the senses of sleeping men, as to fall under most defiling Dreames.

This, who will doubt, that well consi­dersTanta est astu­tia & poteutia Sathamae ludifi­candi sensus; & quid [...]nirum? cum per vitrum f [...]at mutatio sen­sus & color [...]s. Ita potest ludi­ficari oculos & aures ut putes te videre & andire aliquid, quod mon est. Satha [...] maxi­ma subtilitate illudit mentibus & intellectibus, faciliora & leviora sunt apud Diabolum quibus carneos sensus & phan­ta [...]i [...]s illudit, imfimas partes homines; Facilius est ludificari sensus & actus, quem haec▪natura habet crassissimum. (says he) how 'tis certain Satan can deceive even waking men in other sorts and parts? viz.

  • More Externall and Corporeall, &
  • More Internall and Intellectuall.

1. Parts more corporeall, as the more outward senses, the eyes and the ears of men (even when awake) Satan may subtilly make them imagin they hear such sounds and see such sights as in­deed they do not.

[Page 116]2. Parts incorporeall and intelle­ctuall,Quod de mon­strosis partubus Daemonum di­citur, aliqu [...]s vi­di a Dia [...]olo puto desorma­tos, [...]en [...]m a Dia [...]l [...] genera­t [...]s esse semto. Luth. ex Tomo in Genesin 1. & ex Tomo 4. & l [...]. commun. Quintae Classis cap. 6. & cap. 40▪ de superst. Diab. even such as lie more inward and upward, the superiour powers of the soul, as the understanding and rea­son, even in mens waking-time Satan can also deceive, &c. So that we may soon beleeve the lower and inferiour faculties, the sensitive, carnal and more gross parts, may in delusive Dreames be polluted. Thus Luther.

Lastly, In relation to God, a man may learn very much;

  • Both from these Dreames towards him,
  • And from himself towards these Dreames.

Severall things that concern God are considerable hence;

  • As the Might of his Power,
  • And the Mercy of his Patience.

1. Much of Gods power appears as respecting such Dreames;

  • In pardoning things that be so bad, &
  • In preventing things they be no worse.

1. Great is Gods pardoning power,Magna est mi­sericordiae po­tentia; Deus e­nim pollicetur se omnia peccata & omnia in peccatis remis­surum, &c. Lactant. li. 6. else were it not possible that such pol­lutions should have their remissions as yet is manifest they may, in that [Page 117] upon repentance God promises pardon to sinnes of all sorts and sizes: Isa. 55. 7. Jer. 31. 34. Jam. 5. 15. 1 Joh. 1. 9. After this black sinne, God may give a white stone, Rev. 2. 17.

2. Gods preventing power how mighty, is manifest, in bounding the Devill, in limiting lusts, and not letting this Leprosie spread; keeping it wholly off in some, and causing a comfortable cure in others. Our Saviour expressed a work of wonderfull power in healing the woman diseased with a running issue of blood twelve years, Matth. 9. 20.

2. Exceeding much of Gods marvel­lous patience may appear, as respecting such Dreames and filthy Dreamers; Commonly such men may finde, that concerning such Dreames they do

  • Much disposing to them, &
  • Nothing opposing against them.

1. Dispose themselves much to them they do, as deeply provoking of God, pleasing their lusts, and displeasing the Lord. Young years oft paddle and puddle themselves in such pits, watering the Devils plants, and be­ing wanton in evil on the earth, [Page 118] Jam. 5. 5. nourishing their hearts inJam. 5. 5. Enutrire cor­da, significat si­bi indulgere non modo ad naturae satietatem, sed ad cogitationum cupiditatem, &c. delecta­tionem, &c. naughtiness, and nourishing naughti­ness in their hearts; looking on such objects, hearing such stories, reading Pamphlets, with pampering diet as dispose.

2. Oppose themselves against such Dreames they do not, for which non­performance they are found offensiveLege Lutherum loc. de libidini­bus quintae Clas­sis. cap. 66. to God. yet God is patient though pro­voked, in that these Dreamers do no­thing

  • Before for preventing, or
  • After in repenting.

1. Before.] Nothing they are found doing to prevent such Dreames:

  • Either in Watching,
  • Or in Prayer.

1. Watch they do not. A good Chri­stian indeed sets his soul to watch while his body sleeps. Like the Prophet, Isa. 21. 8. who cried, a Lion my Lord, I stand continually upon the watch-tower in the day time, and I am set in my ward whole nights. But with these no Lion is feared, no night-warding or watch­ing performed; their whole man lies asleep, when these night-fires fear­fully [Page 119] burn and break out.

2. Pray they do not. Indeed a godly man cries upon this account against such a sleep of sinne, as David against the sleep of death: Consider and hear me O Lord my God, lighten my eyes lest that I sleep the sleep of death, and mine enemies say I have prevailed against him, Psal. 13. 3. That the Devil prevailing may not triumph, such a one rather desires to sleep in the dust of the earth, than in the lusts of his heart: And desires (while he lives) that rather than the Lord should suffer him to sleep so sin­ing, he would keep him awake without sleep. But no such matter with these men, by any prayer to God in point of prevention.

2. After.] Nothing they do in the duty of repentance. Though such ought like David, to wash their bed, and water their couch with tears; and like Jere­miah, De talibus quo­que cogitationi­bus venia pe­tenda est, pectus percutiendum, & dicendum, Dimitte nobis debita nostra. Aug. de Trin. lib. 12. to pray, Oh that my head were full of water, and eyes fountains of tears, to weep day and night, &c. These night­naughty-thoughts should make such men strike their breasts, and beg Gods applying of healing plaisters. But to lie [Page 120] and live under such sinne with the neg­lects of all this, expresses the wicked­ness of man, and yet the patience of God: God patient in forbearing his blows. As God might strike men dead by day in their evil deeds; so by night in the midst of their naughty Dreames. O dreadfull, yet due! Diodate upon Isa. 21. 3, 4. observes, how Babylons ruin should be in the night, and surprize them in their sleep, awaking, but with frights in their fall. Is not this a sinne of sad deserts? Calvin upon Micah 2.Si tempus noc­turnum datum sit ad quietem, certe cessa [...]dum est ab omni pra­vitate, qui vires quiete nocturna reficit, debet etiam, &c. 1. aggravates night-naughtiness; that that time God gives man for rest from the lawfull works of his calling, he should sure rest from the unlawfull works of sinning. That time God gives man to refresh himself, he should not spend to defile himself, &c. These filthy Dreamers defile the flesh.

I have done with the Instruction: I come now to the Admonition: wherein note,

  • The Men it is to, &
  • The Matter it is of.

The Men that be concerned herein, &

The Matter to be considered hereupon.

[Page 121]1. For the Men that this monitoryPeccatum in sanctis non so­lum est, sed a­git, nec solum vivit sed vigi­lat. Luth. loc. 40. de reliquiis pe [...]catorum in sanctis. discourse will concern; are all such as lie liable to these evil Dreames: of which there are two sorts;

  • 1. Carnall men who are not at all sanctified, &
  • 2. Sanctified men so farre as they are carnall.

Sinfull and unsanctified men are the primary, principall, and the most proper subjects of such dreaming-thoughts, as are so filthy and defiling. For

  • 1. They are full of Matter for such Dreames.
  • 2. They are free as Movers in such Dreames.

1. For Matter to make such Dreames of, they are full: Let but the Devil come into the shop of their phantasie, and there he may finde all tools fit for his work. A carnall heart is fitly com­pared to Tophet, Isa. 30. 32. 'Tis deep [...], &c. Nazian. and large, the pile thereof is fire and much wood; the Devil blows up the flame, and it burns at midnight by a­bominable Dreames. As that stink­ing mud of sinne which lies in the soul of an unsanctified man, oft times the [Page 122] Devil draws it out at his mouth by foul and filthy words when he is awake: so sometimes he draws that dirty pud­dle all up into his minde, by black and beastly thoughts when he is asleep. As at times God acts up the graces of the Spirit by sweet and holy Dreames, and rare representations in the night of most blessed matters, to the minds of con­verted men; so the Devil in the night­time, oft acts up the lusts of the flesh by base and wicked Dreames, and wretch­ed representations to the minds of men unconverted, of matters not meet to be mentioned. The Devil need not bring any thing with him, onely im­prove the evil that is already, unto the forming of most filthy Dreames.

2. As movers to meet such Dreames these men are free: Their minds are active in sinne, and sinne active in their minds at all seasons. They sleep in sinne, but sinne does not sleep in them; yea though in sinne they certainly sleep, yet to sinne their souls are always awake. They are ready to co-work with Satan in sinfull Dreames; so that such things are not onely dreamed in them, but [Page 123] they are the dreamers of them. The Devil does not cause such Dreames without their concurrence, but their corrupt hearts can cause such Dreames without the concurrence of the Devil. There is a sea of sinne in their souls may foam and boyl when no wind blows; and when winds of temptations are strong, and the Devil does powerfully promote in the minds of men such Dreames of sinne, they may blame themselves.

For he comes thus to work, because they invite him in the day.

And he thus works when he comes, because they assist him in the night.

2. Gods Saints in sleep are subject to such sinfull thoughts. As they haveSobriis castis & religiosis vi­ris tetra obscoe­na & plena im­puritatis somnia saepè contingunt. Magir. in Phi­sio. li. 6. ca. 15. good Dreames from Gods concurrence with the work of grace by which they are sanctified; so they may have bad Dreames as from the Devils compliance with those principles of corruption that remain unmortified. Peter lying in a trance, Acts 10. saw a sheet in which (ac­cording to the Law) were beasts both clean and unclean, and all coming down from Heaven. A Christian in his sleep [Page 124] may indeed have divers Dreames, wherein (even according to the Go­spel) the thoughts of his heart are some clean and some unclean, but yet the clean onely come from Heaven, and the unclean from Hell; of which, not God but the devil is the undoubted au­thor. We here observe,

2. That there are no persons Satan seeks more to make them sinfull, then Gods Saints.

2. That there are no seasons when Satan seeks more to make them sinfull, then in nights.

1. The Saints of God Satan most so­licits them to sinne. He well knows,

  • They from Sinne do most oppose him, &
  • They by Sinne do most displease God.

1. Good men when they sleep from sinne and hold close to the service of God, they supplant Satans throne, their prayers are as great guns and bat­ter the Devils buildings; and hence he endeavours to draw them off from all such service, unto sinne against God.

2. Good men when they fall to sinne [Page 125] they most offend God: Their miscar­riages most grieve the Spirit of Grace, and as daggers cut deepest into the heart of our dearest Lord: hence also are the Devils endeavours to draw such to sinne.

2. The season of the night is a chief time when the tempter suggests sinne into such as they sleep;

  • Because he is cunning, &
  • Because he is cowardly.

1. The Devil is cunning, and there­foreƲt faciat ali­quandò dor­mientibus, quod non potest vigi­lantibus. Aug. Serm. de Temp. comes in the night: When the servants of God are asleep in their beds, he surprizes them by putting sinfull thoughts in their mindes. 'Twas once Gods question to Satan, Hast thou con­sidered my servant Job? God hath not a servant but Satan considers him; as how, so when; as by what means, so at what times his temptations will take best. In the day the Devil knows good men are more observant of him, vigilant over him, that by unclean thoughts to carry them aside, he sees small hope. When their bodies are asleep, their mindes are not so well watching, nor their thoughts so resolvedly resisting, [Page 126] but Satan makes advantage of the sea­son to give his assaults success. SomeQui hujusmodi pisces pis [...]antur de nocte eos in­vadunt in tene­bris. Aquinas. report, that cunning Fishers when they would catch the Whale, Leviathan, or such great Fishes in the sea, they set to it in the night-time, when the creatures cannot see who invades them, nor how to evade them. Thus the Devil when he would fain so fish as to catch these choice peeces the precious Saints of God, he subtilly sets upon them in the night, as his fittest time wherein to tempt and take them.

2. The Devil is a coward: In the day he dares not oftentimes so assault Gods Saints, when he sees them up in their armour, and so waits till night. As there be wild beasts, in the night they range abroad for their prey, who are afraid to creep out of their dens in the day time, Psal. 104. 20. There be Theeves that venture not upon men that meet them in the day, but are bold to break houses in the night, and bind them they finde asleep in their beds, Job 24. 15, 16. Such a one is Sa­tan. The Saints of God when they are awake, are more ready to the battell, [Page 127] and then the Devil as a base beaten enemy is not so forward to fight them, but he sets upon these souldiers of Christ when they are asleep in their quarters.

These things premised, 'tis manifest, that as carnal men are the subjects of, so Christian men are subject to these sinfull Dreames, and therefore men of all sorts are concerned in the ensuing discourse.

2. The matter whereof this moni­tory discourse will further consist touch­ing such Dreames, is,

  • 1. Some Perswasions against them, &
  • 2. Some Directions about them.

Perswasions moving against them, are from the prejudices of them, in respect of things both

  • Good, &
  • Evil.

First, For the prejudice these Dreams do us toward things good: 'Tis in regard both of the

  • Good they draw us from, & of the
  • Good they draw from us.

1. Such Dreames (or sinfull thoughts in sleep) they take our minds off from [Page 128] those good watchings and workings as sute to our sleeping times. In the time of sleep, though a mans outward senses are bound, and as servants they cease their ordinary business abroad, yet the inward powers of phantasie and me­mory are then most free and best at li­berty for their proper imployments; now the soul being of God furnished with such faculties and abilities, 'tis sad when the Devil seduces them, and by sinfull dreamings diverts and pollutes them. As God hath created the soul at all times fit for good work, so God hath appointed good work for the soul at all times, to wit, meditation upon his Law day and night, Josh. 1. 8. Now sinfull Dreames draw us off from thisIn collationibus Patrum legitur de quodam, qui semper in die­bus festis, Somniando pol­lutionem noctur­nam patiebatur hoc Diabolo pro­curante ut im­pediretur a sa­cra communio­ne, &c. Aquin. 22ae. Quaest. 154 Art. 5. duty.

2. Such Dreames they do not onely take our mindes off from good, but take good out of our mindes. We have not the benefit and comfort of the Word of God and Spirit of God at such times to our thoughts: they are as it were taken from us in respect of the stops hereby to their present exercise. As when Saul was asleep in the trench, [Page 129] David took from his very bolster his spear and a cruse of water, 1 Sam. 26. 12. Thus Satan in the night when we are asleep in our beds, by bad Dreames gets away our spear and our water, the Word of God that should defend us, and the Spirit of God that should refresh us: Thus of good things are we lamen­tably left.

2. The prejudice these Dreames do us toward things evil: This in re­gard of

  • The evil of Sinne they draw us un­to, & also
  • The evil of Punishment they draw up­on us.

The sinne of such Dreames is against

  • The Commands of God, &
  • The Mercies of God.

1. There be Commands which here­by we transgress: God requires that not onely the soul but the body be set free from all ways of defilement: Let us cleanse our selves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit, 2 Cor. 7. 1. That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in holiness and honour, 1 Thes. 4. 4. Not onely the soul which is in the [Page 130] vessel of the body, but the body which is the vessel of the soul, must be kept clean from soile. We must hate that whereby the garment of the flesh is spotted, as we must hate the garment spotted of the flesh, Jude 23. therefore not defile the flesh with Dreames.

2. There be Mercies which hereby we abuse: To have beds to sleep on, and to have sleep upon our beds is a double mercy. Let us mark that expression of our Saviour, Matth. 8. 20. The Foxes have holes, and the Birds of the air nests, but the Sonne of Man hath not where to lay his head. It may seem Christ had not here any setled bed to sleep up­on. 'Tis evident Job had his bed, but thereon he could not sleep. Weary some nights are appointed to me; when I lie down I say when shall I arise and the night be gone, I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day, Job 7. 3, 4. Now to have with our beds to sleep on, sleep upon our beds, are benefits too big to be abused, by the interpose of such prejudiciall Dreames.

The punishment for such Dreames is

The punishments present in this world are,

  • Debility of Body, &
  • Perplexity of Soul.

1. Hereby the body is weakened, na­ture wasted, corporeall parts as defiled, so enfeebled. These Dreames do to the sinner as Dalilah to Sampson, they bereave him of his strength, and leave him in a languishing estate: If life be prolonged, pains are enlarged, aches with age encreased, especially if such filthy Dreames be frequent. (Beside the evil that may run and reach unto posterity.)

2. Hereby the Soul is wounded: The Devil hereupon makes great advantage in life and death to dismay the mind. Of such offences he does accuse in aNoli pecc [...]re nam etsi nox est, Deus videt, Angeli circa cubile astant, Diabolus accu­sabit, conscien­tia, testabitur infernus cruci­abit, &c. double Court; The Court of Heaven, the Court of Conscience. We read Rev. 12. 10. The accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accuseth them before God day and night. As the Devil does accuse in the day and night seasons, so he does accuse of the day and-night sinnes. He [Page 132] accuses in the night for sinfull deeds in the day, and he accuses in the day of sinfull Dreames in the night. 'Tis sad when Satan keeps assizes in our souls, and actually arraignes, endites and con­demns, for such dealings as he hath had with us in a way of wicked Dreames.

2. The punishment future in the world to come (without the prevention of divine mercy) is everlasting misery. Such Dreames draw to ruine: That which hath a defiling power is of a de­stroying nature. And if such Dreames be sinne, The wages of every sinne is death, Rom. 6. 23. History reports ofSucton. cap. 33. Nero (that monster of men,) that a­mong the many wayes he sought his Mother Agrippinas death, one was in the night when she lay asleep in her bed, to kill her with the fall of a heavy beam, which was therefore made loose in the roof of the room. 'Tis our death and utter undoing the Devil our deadly ad­versary aims at, when he lets fall these filthy Dreames while we lie by night asleep in our beds. And as 'tis that which he desires, so 'tis that which we deserve and must sustain, except Gods [Page 133] purging and pardoning grace prevents. Amen.

Thus much for disswasions, now for Directions.

These guid us to divers duties about such Dreames: and they are

  • Either Antecedent,
  • Or Consequent.

Duties antecedent are such as serve to prevent these Dreames. And they

  • Either look outward upon others,
  • Or they look inward upon our selves.

Duties which we are to discharge to­wards others, areEx operatione Daemonis com­moventur phan­tasmata dormi­entis ad macu­landum, & hoc promovetur ho­minis negligen­tiâ praeparandi vel expectandi se contra Dae­monis illusiones unde in serò cantatur. Ho­stem nostrum comprime, ne polluantur cor­pora. Aquin. 22ae. Quaest. 154. Art. 5.

  • Expectation of Satan, &
  • Supplication to God.

1. The Devil is to be expected to do his endeavours to draw in such Dreames:

  • Because he is ever malicious,
  • Because he is ever treacherous.

The Devils malice is such, as makes him to do what mischief he may against both good and bad, both day and night. History writes of a River that passes through some parts of America, that not being fed by any spring, but caused by snow which the Sunne melts down the mountains, it runs strong in the day, but [Page 134] hath no streame in the night. 'Tis not so with Satan, such springs of malice and mischief remains in him, that the streams of his temptations run strong by night as well as by day: he hath his night­works and his night-walks for our per­petuall prejudice.

2. Satans treachery is such, as we can never be secure: He may be as it were bound up in the day, and break loose in the night. History makes mention of one Cleomenes a Lacedemonian King, who making warre against the Argives, he took truce with them for seaven days, and in the third night while they lay secure and asleep in their tents, he broke in upon them and slew them with the edg of the sword; saying, His truce was for days, and not for nights. Of such treacherous dealings the Devil is full, a truce with him is not to be trusted; if he be quiet in the day, he may be coming in the night. He being a fiend of darkness as they are deeds of dark­ness he is most busie about; so they are times of darkness he is most busie in: times both of spirituall and naturall darkness that best suit his designs, so [Page 135] that he may soonest be suspected by night. Now because he loves to come unlookt for, provision may be a good prevention.

2. God is to be entreated. Prayer to God is a principall means to keep off the Devil in such Dreames; because

  • It engages the presence of God with us, &
  • It accomplishes the promise of God to us.

Upon Prayer God affords his pre­sence with us: this sets the Devil at a distance from us. The Wolfe (says Au­stin) comes to the sheep-fold by night, purposing to prey upon the poor Lambs when they lie asleep; but he findes the sheephard awake and walking about the fold, which forces him back without shed­ding blood. Thus the Devil he designs to assault by night, but God being about our beds he is beaten back: He beginsAug. de verb. Apo. Ser. 21. Lupus venit ad ovile ovinm quaerit invade­re, jugulare, de­vorare. Pasto­res vigilant, ni­hil aufert, &c. to suggest but cannot go on, God being by. Esth. 7. 8. Haman being fallen upon the bed where Esther was, the King said, Will he force the Queen also before me in the house? When Satan falls as it were upon the bed, God says, Will he [Page 136] force my servant before my face? then he flies.

Upon Prayer God fulfills his promise to us. Isa. 27. 1. we finde the Devil compared to a piercing and crooked Serpent, creeping into Gods vineyard to do it harm; Ai but says God of his vineyard, I the Lord do keep it, lest any hurt it; I will keep it night and day. In the night the Devil comes, but he cannot catch because God keeps; nor harm be­cause God helps: God hath promised his Angels to defend his Saints, to encamp about them; which may principally imply night-protection. Psal. 34. 7. In the day we are more upon our march, in the night, then we lie still, and then the Angel of the Lord encamps round about. A guard of Angels can keep off a legion of Devils. In this respect we may say of the bed of Gods servants as Cant. 3. 7. 8. Behold his bed which is Solomons, threescore valiant men are about it all Optimus dor­mientium cu­stos, certissima navigantium salus, tutissi­mum viatoribus s [...]utum. Greg. Nyss. holding swords; such night-safeguards Prayer procures. Prayer (says One) as in the day time 'tis the travellers trustiest guide, the souldiers safest shield; so in the night time 'tis the saylers surest safety, [Page 137] and the sleepers best keeper. Prayer, asNon Leonis ru­gitus bestias sic fugat, ac justi oratio Daemones, si loquitur so­lum devo­lant. Chrys. Hom. 13. in Act. Apost. it ought to be the key of the morning, so the lock of the night: as in the morn­ing we should not open into the world without Prayer, so in the evening we should by prayer shut up our selves in God, that the Devil in bad Dreames may not come near us by night. As the roaring of the Lion (says Chrisostome) makes the evening wolves to runne, so the prayer of faithfull men makes night-Devils to slee.

Duties which we are to discharge to­wards our selves, are

  • Sinne-mortification, &
  • Serious consideration.

1. We must be much in mortifying of sinne, that Satan may have less sui­table matter to make sinfull Dreames out of. Sinne

  • It encourages the Devil for to come, &
  • It accompanies the Devil when he is come.

1. Satan would never so boldly come about such works, but that he knows he shall finde fuell s [...] for his fire. Hence he does usually make h [...] sug­gestions [Page 138] to match our corruptions. As Nature draws out common Dreames according to the constitution of the bo­dy; so does the Devil unclean Dreams, according to the corruption of the heart.

2. Satan could never so freely go on in his work, but that he finds somewhat in us that does befriend his filthy de­signs: He meets with that in our hearts that gives him the hand for his help: Though he be a spirit, yet by the lustsDiabolus e [...]si sit spiritus agi­tat tamen in operibus [...]arnis. Aug. de Civit. D [...]i. lib. 14. of the flesh, he can exceedingly set for­ward such ways of defilements, and thereby fulfill his infernall contrive­ments. The way to disinable Satan, is to subdue sinne; and the best way to beat him back, is to beat that down, by a perpetuall battell. Lycurgus made a Law among the Lacedemonians, that they should never fight with one enemy oft: but sinne is an enemy we must oft encounter or never conquer: now Sa­tan in the night will get victory over us, if we when awake get not victory over sinne. Sinne is destroyed

  • By deep humiliations, &
  • By close applications.

[Page 139]1. Deep humblings will destroy sinne: Repentance is a Plow, which if it cuts deep will rend up sinne by the roots. A ready way to put sinne to death, is to drown it in the deep waters of godly sorrow, as Pharaohs host in the red sea.

2. Such close applying as is by faithConfige ergo clavis spiritua­alibus, &c. affi­ge carnes pati­bulo crucis do­minicae, ut liber­tatem vagandi cupiditas vo­luptatum cruci affixa non ha­beat. Amb. in Psal. 119. causes sins death: To apply the Word of God and the blood of Christ, breaks the strength, and draws out the life of sinne, with Scripture-nails driven home by the hand of faith, to make fast the body of this flesh to the Cross of Christ, that it move not hand nor foot, in word, work or thought, but dies by the power of Christs death.

2. To resist such sinfull Dreames, we must be much in considering seri­ously

  • The Excellency of Soul and Body, &
  • The certainty of Death and Judgment.

1. A setled considering how excel­lent man is in soul: Hence Bernard thus breaks out, O anima insig­nita Dei ima­gine, decorata similitudine, re­dempta Christi sanguine dis­pensata fide dotata spiri­tu, &c. O my soul created after the Image of God, redeemed with the blood of Christ, adorned with the graces of the Spirit, capable of the happiness of Hea­ven, [Page 140] &c. what hast thou to do with the Quid ti [...]i cum carne? Quid ti [...]i cum Diabolo? Bern. lib. Mod. flesh? what hast thou to do night or day with the Devil? yea the body of man is a brave and beautifull piece, if we observe

  • The Composition of it, &
  • The Comparisons fr [...]m it.
  • How God hath made it, &
  • How God doth use it.

The beauty of the body as it comes out of the hand of God, we may gather from Eccles. 12. 3, 4, 5. And as it falls into the hand of God again it abounds in beauty; God makes it to be

  • A Temple, &
  • A Sample.

1 Cor. 6. 19. Know ye not that your body is Corpus unius­cujus [...] ▪ vestru [...] templum est spi­ritus sa [...] ideo (que) nullo mo­do polluendum. Aug. lib. de bo­no viduitatis cap. 6. Item Aug. contra Maxim. lib. 1. col. 689. Templa non sunt sordibus polluenda quia Deo sancto con­secrata, sed corpora nostra sunt Dei Tem­pla & ideo pu­ra semper sunt servanda. Pa­raeus Com. in 1 Cor. Quod a corpore humano in se similitudinem trahat Deus, &c. Greg. Mor. lib. 32. Sect. 13. the Temple of the holy Ghost? And 'tis as a sample or pattern; the Church of God (the most glorious thing in the world) is resembled by the body of man: yea God borrowes similitudes from mans body to express Himself, ascribing to Himself an Eye, a Mouth, a Hand, &c. God thus hath honoured the body. This pondered may prove a means to preserve our souls and bodies from sinne-defilements.

[Page 141]2. A setled considering how sure yea near death and judgment-day draws: meditate much of deaths approach. Thoughts of sinne may bring on death, but thoughts of death will keep off sinne both asleep and awake: thus die daily. Let us also fix in our mindes the medi­tation of the day, when the Lord shall come in the clouds to judgment. We have heard of that saying of St. Jerom, Whether I eat or drink, whether I wake or sleep, me thinks I hear that voice, Arise Bern. de inter­no do [...]no. ca. 33. ye dead and come to judgment. Hence he had no room for a bad Dreame. Bernard on the other side sadly of him­self complains: Alas what do I mean! I eat, I drink, I play, I sleep, as if I had gone beyond death, and passed over the day of judgment. We are in danger to be sadly sinning when we are securely sleeping: Such considerations will (well setled) prevent secure sleep, and so arm against evil Dreames: these will set theNon peccabis somnia [...]do, si vigilabis dor­miendo. Aug. de verb. Dom. soul upon its watch-tower; and while its vigilant it will not be peccant. Thus much may suffice for antecedent duties.

The duties subsequent concern such sinfull Dreames in a double case;

  • [Page 142]In case we are not free from them, &
  • In case from them we are free.

If by such Dreames we have been defiled, our duty is,

Both to bewail the sinne that hath been with us in the night;

And to beware we no way encrease the sinne in the day.

1. We must take to heart such nightAug. Conf. lib. 10. cap. 30. miscarriages. Augustine in his confes­sions hereof makes sad complaints; and so have others of Gods dear Saints. Lament we must,

  • That the sinne hath been in us, &
  • That we have been in the sinne.

That such a defiling sinne hath fallen upon us must be our grief: that while we slept, the enemy in our field hath sown such tares. As that Mother comes with her complaint to Solomon, 1 King. 3. 20. While thine handmaid slept, this woman came and laid her dead childe in my bosome. So let a man make his moan to God: O Lord, while thy servant slept, Satan came and laid this wicked Dreame in my minde. But then that we have fallen in with such a sinne is matter of more mourning: our cor­ruptions [Page 143] have clapt in with Satans tem­ptations, our mindes have been comply­ing, our wills consenting, fleshly desires raised, carnall delights pleased; O that, that is most bitterly to be bewailed!

2. We must take heed we do not in the day make the sinne much worse

  • By mentall recalling of it, &
  • By actual committing of it.

1. Pleasingly to recall it in our minds will augment the sinne. 'Tis abomina­ble for a man to communicate what communion he hath had with the Devil in the night, as a Christian remembers what sweet communion his soul hath had with God in the night. Psal. 77. 6. says that holy man, I call to remem­brance my songs in the night. That's ve­ry good; but for a carnal man to call to remembrance his sins in the night, and to solace himself when awake with the renewed thoughts of what he had in his sleep, is a sinne exceeding sinfull.

2. Actually to fulfill it in deeds is very dangerous. 'Tis that the Devil indeed drives at, to draw us to do when we are awake, what we dreamt in our sleep. For good things Satan is satisfied [Page 144] we should rest in the apparition and shew thereof, and some slight imaginations thereupon, to have no more but Dreames of grace and holiness, Dreames of glory and happiness: but he is not content that men should take up with imaginary supposals of sinne and some bare thoughts thereupon, but he would have them to bring forth the further fruits thereof: To have more then Dreames of sinne and wickedness, of lasciviousness and wantonness, more then Dreames of adultery, f [...]rnication and uncleanness. That which men think when they are asleep, the Devil would have them act when they are awake.

If by such filthy Dreames we have not been defiled, our duty is,

  • To be thankfull that God kept us in the night, &
  • To be carefull in keeping to God in the day.

In giving thanks to God we have been so kept. We must be

  • Early thankfull, &
  • Gladly thankfull.

1. We must not delay our thank­fullness. Before the body be out of the [Page 145] bed, let the heart be up with God: yea let body and soul rise and render the Lord praise. As Noah, as soon as he was come safe out of the Ark, Gen. 8. built an Altar and offered burnt offerings to God. And the Lord smelled a sweet sa­vour, &c. So as soon as ever we get safe off our beds, offer upon the Altar Christ, burnt-offerings of fervent praises unto God the Lord.

2. We must with joy enlarge our thankfullness. In the morning when we apprehend what hazards our houses have escaped from fire or thieves in the night, with great rejoycing we give glory to God; when our selves have been delivered from the danger of these night-pollutions, to God with great joy what glory ought we to give? 'Tis God that hath kept Satan and our sinfull souls asunder. The Devil is like the Harlot that goes abroad in the dark and black night, soliciting to bed-abomi­nations, Prov. 7. 9, 10. And how oft would he prevail, did not God prevent? When the Egyptians pursued the Is­raelites, God by a cloud and a pillar of fire, was about his peoples camp, that [Page 146] Pharaohs host could not come neer them all the night, Exod. 14. 20. Thus God is a­bout our beds, and keeps Satan he can­not come neer us all the night: O with what gladness of heart ought we to glo­rifie Gods holy Name!

2. Care is required that we all the day keep close to God, least we be worse awake then when we were asleep: shall we not stick to that God in the day, who stuck to us in the night? Let our day-care appear to be great

  • By an exact shunning of every sinne, &
  • By an exact doing of every service.

First, We must be very vigilant to avoid day-sinnes, that the Lord may not leave us the night coming, who the night past preserved us: Let not sinfull thoughts come in and carry us a­way when awake, least after we sinne in our sleep, who before slept without sinne. An Antient Writer upon theHosius. cap. 66. in De [...]al. ten Commandements says, That Ido­latrous Images first crept into the Church when the Pastors thereof were asleep, be­ing idle and carelesly secure not fore­seeing the evil. Thus when we fall into careless security (bodies awake, but [Page 147] souls asleep at noon-day) defiling ima­ginations and wicked thoughts wind in­to our hearts, that may work us much ill the next night. In the day-time let us see we turn not aside by sinfull thoughts: Thoughts according as theyToties ante De­um peccando labimur quoties a recto itinere intimae cogita­tionis pede claudicamus. Greg. in cap. 34. Iobi. Extimesco ma­gis occulta pec­cata quae clam agito quam ma­nifesta quae pa­lam perpetro. Bern. Nequissimi ho­stis est illa pri­ma caliditas & ars doli plena animos nostros ma­lis cogitationi­bus delectare, &c. Aug. commonly runne out in the day, so they break forth in the night: O let us look to these heart-sleeps, and walk as even­ly all day in thoughts as ever we can! Let not us by evil thoughts make halts in our hearts, least we go lame all our lives, and day and night from God go awry. Let a holy fear keep us watch­ing against heart-wickedness, and to fly back from all secret sinnes which Gods best Saints do most fear, and whereof every day we are in the deepest danger. The Devil we may be sure hath not a deeper design, then to set us incessantly upon soul-sinfullness, for thereby he can the sooner soil us and foul us with fleshly-lusts, seducing from sinfull thoughts in the day, to filthy acts in the night: from imaginations of evil, awake to evil imaginations in sleep.

Secondly, We must be sedulous in [Page 148] the service of God. Night-mercies engage to day-duties: God who caus'd our deliverance when we were asleep, calls for our obedience when we are awake: Let us never be negligent to­wards him who hath been vigilant over us: Let us do Gods work before weEccles. 11. 6. Psal. 5. 3. sleep, that we may not do the Devils work when we sleep. In the morning as soon as we awake let us up and be doing something for God, and resolve again to serve God before we sleep, and re­solve not to sleep till God be served. Surely I will not come into the Tabernacle of my house, nor go up into my bed. I will not give sleep to my eyes, nor slumber to my eye-lids, untill I find out a place for the Lord, an habitation for the mighty God of Jacob, Psal. 132. 3, 4, 5. Every day a double care becometh Christians, in this case of keeping clean from the filth of Dreames:

  • To get farre from the Devil, &
  • To draw neer to God.

1. Farre from the Devil: Prov. 6. 4, 5. Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eye-lids: Till thou deli­ver thy self as a Roe from the hand of the [Page 149] hunter, and as a bird from the snare of the fouler. He that is snared in the day, gets not loose in the night.

2. Neer to God in the day, and God will be neer us in the night; so neer, as that nothing do come in between God and our souls except Christ alone, which will be our best course to keep all cleer in this case, that with filthy Dreames we do not defile our selves.

Amen, Amen.

IV. Of Idle and Vain DREAMES.

ECCLES. 5. 7.‘In the multitude of Dreames are divers vanities, but fear thou God.’

BEing about bad Dreames, wherein mans sinne and Satan have their subtill work:

  • Some be more bad and less usuall, &
  • Others be less bad and more common.

And having finished the former, to wit, Dreames notoriously false, filthy and vile; I come to discourse the lat­ter, to wit, Dreames ridiculously fool­ish, idle and vain: of which we finde a multitude: In the multitude of Dreames there be divers vanities, but fear thou God.

This whole Book of Ecclesiastes, be­ing [Page 151] as an excellent Sermon preached by repenting Solomon▪ concerning the worlds vanity; an Author eminent a­mongHugo de S. Vi­ctore. Natione Saxo, professio­ne Carthusianus Parisiensis. Multa scripsit & floruit. 1130 An. post Chr. Ʋbi putatis mens erat hu­jus hominis quum haec di­ceret vanitas vanissima. Homo erat sed supra hominem erat. Nisi ho­minem excede­ret, omnia esse vanitates non videret. the Schoolmen; from thence draws a double inference, as referring

  • To this man in speciall, &
  • To each man in generall.

1. Towards this man, to wit, Solo­mon, in that he saw all the world vanity, he sure was above the vanities of the world: He was (says he) a man, and yet he did exceed a man, for all those things that commonly men admire as the onely excellencies, seemed to his view but very vanities.

2. Towards each man this conclu­sion is made, that he is a maker of va­nity, and that the motions of his hand, head or heart, are but meer vanities. For (says he Si secundum aliquid vanum est quod Deus creavit, quomo­dò non multo magis vanum est quod hom [...] [...]ingit, si imagi­narium est quod fecit suprema Essentia. Si transitorium est quod fecit aeter­nus, &c. Hugo de S. Victore in Eccles. Hom. 1.) if in some respect such things are vanities as were formed and fashioned by the hands of God, sure such things then are very vanities, as are fain­ed and fancied in the hearts of men.

No marvell if mens head and heart­actings are but idle Ideas, no wonder if the whole frame and Figment, all the imaginations and thoughts of mens [Page 152] mindes are meer vanities: considered

  • Whether awake,
  • Or asleep.

What myriads and multitudes of most vain vanities are imagined and made in the mindes of men, in times of sleep, the Text present plainly and po­sitively reports: In the multitude of Dreames are divers vanities, but fear thou God.

This single sentence of Solomons con­sists of two considerable parts,

  • A Proposall, &
  • An Imposall.

1. That which the Preacher propo­seth, is man in his sleeping fancies that are not fit. Philo observeth, that manIs qui fictus est homo differt ab eo quem Deus fecit, Deus e­nim, &c. Philo. lib. 2. Legis Al­legoriarum. Nihil in rebus humanis, nihil in homine ipso praeter umbram sine mora vo­lantem, &c. Philo in libro quod Deus sit immutabilis. was made of God such a reall rationall creature, as what he imagins, should be solid and substantiall, but man by sinne hath made himself such a fained fiction, that what things he imagins are but fictions fained, empty shews, and fleeing shadows: his vain and vanishing sha­dows day and night are great. But as 'tis well observed of the Sunne, that it causeth the longest shadows when even­ing comes and it's going down: so when [Page 153] man is in his night-time and laid downVid. Aug. in Psal. 91. 1. to sleep, then he draws shadows long and great, then his thoughts move most idlely, then are his Dreames variously vaine. In the multitude of Dreames are divers vanities.

2. That which the Preacher impo­seth is, that ever-awaking fear of God which is fit for man: For man this fear is so fit, as without the same he hath nothing solid, but is full of vanity, fra­ming vanities, fancying and conceiting such things in sleep, as are but the sha­dows of the night; yea man does notIta non timens conspectum Di­vinum non est homo sed homi­nis umbra, &c. Cajetanus in Eccles. cap. 8. onely make night-shadows in his sleep, but whether asleep or awake, without this divine fear he is but a shadow: Yea the want of this fear does not onely make man to be shadow-like, but even God himself is made like a shadow without this fear. Men in whose hearts this fear is not found, in them Deity falls and vanity prevails: But this fear soPrimus in orbe Deos fecit ti­mor. Salust. rowses man, yea it so raises and realizes God, as it advances Deity and prevents vanity: In the multitude of Dreames be divers vanities, but fear thou God.

Concerning some Dreames, that [Page 154] which Solomon in this saying sets down is double,

  • Their Malady, &
  • Their Remedy.

1. The malady or evil of those Dreames which here he drives at and draws out, is discernably visible

  • In their vanity, &
  • In their multitude.

The vanity of these Dreames, is very visible, in

  • The plurality of their number, &
  • The diversity of their nature.

1. Their number is plurall [vani­ties:] If we observe what vanity is in the singular number, we may soon con­ceive what 'tis in the plurall. Vanity, as various Scriptures and very good Au­thors interpret the word, take thus:

1. Vanity for vacuity, an emptiness ofVanum signifi­cat vacuum concavum nul­lam habens so­liditatem, ve­ritatem, utilita­tem, &c. Illiri­cus clav. Scrip. Ita. Gellius Noct. Attic. lib. 18. cap. 4. any true and solid good, as a hollow vessel that hath nothing therein but a meer sound, Hose. 10. 1. Such a thing is a vain man or man of vanity.

2. Vanity for falsity or a lye; Lying vanities. Jonah 3. v. 8. when some­thing appears what it is not, or is not what it appears, but proves a plain [Page 155] imposture, This is vanity.

3. Vanity for levity, a thing so light that hath neither weight nor worth. They are lighter then vanity, Psal. 62. 9.

4. Vanity for inutility, or what is pro­fitless: Vain things that will not profit. 1 Sam. 12. 21. Things frivolous andVanitas est No­men sine Re. Erasmus. fruitless are idle and vain. The Jews use to call the seaventh year, The idle year; for then the earth seemed to be covered with vanity and sterility, the ground lay fallow, they did neither sow or reap. When mens hands and hearts are idle from their business, or idle in their business, that no benefit is brought in thereby, This is vanity. That which vanishes as a meteor in the aire, is like aBullatas nugas utpote similes vento plenis, &c. Pers. Sat. 5. vapour from the earth, or like a bubble upon the water, onely full of winde, or that passes like a puff of breath from the mouth, This is vanity. Such vanities are in the ordinary actings and usuall movings of many mens mindes, espe­cially in sleeping time. O what loose, lame, light leaps, doeth the heart then take, skipping up and down to no end! What fond, false, foolish steps does the [Page 156] feet of the soul make, when the body lies still on the bed. Ambrose comparethSomnus est hic vivendi usus in qu [...] diversae commutationum vic [...]s quasi ebriae & nihil solidum sed vacuae re­rum species di­spersae, &c. Ambrosius in Epist. ca. 3. & Epist. 19. the space, case and use of many a mans life, to a sleep full of vain Dreames: In which (sayes he) are divers, and as it were, drunken changes of things, no­thing solid or serious, nothing fixed or firm, but empty shadows of things scat­tered, that dispersing pass away. So we see in what sense Dreames are said to be vanities.

Secondly, See we the diversity of these Dreames, or these vanities consi­dered as they are said to be divers [Di­vers vanities.]

1. Divers for their matter: The matter about which sometimes the mindes of sleeping men move, is vain in it self: sometimes the matter in it self is solid, yet the minde moveth vainly thereupon.

2. Divers for their measure: TheVerum est sim­plex & vanum multiplex. measure or degree of vanity which men draw out in Dreames may be more or less. Look into one Dreame and there is something of vanity: observe ano­ther and it may be said, vanity of vani­ties, all is vanity.

[Page 157]3▪ Divers for their manner: TheVarieta [...] est va­na, & vanitas varia. manner or way how vanity may work is wonderfull. Dreames of vanity▪may be various, not only in their kinde and cause, but in their carriage and course, as cast into severall moulds, and coming out in differing methods.

4. Divers for their meaning: Such idle conceits may have severall de­signs. Oft-times such vain motions the minde sends out, as childrens arrows that are shot at random and directed to no mark. At other times the very drifts of these Dreames are vain, their inten­tionall tendency is to vanity.

2. Observe the evil of such Dreames in which are divers vanities, as may be further evidenced in their multitude. In the multitude of Dreames, &c.

For the unfolding of this, two things 'tis fit to affirm,

  • 1. That multitude does not make Dreames to be evil or vain.
  • 2. That Dreames may yet be made more vain and evil through multi­tude.

Meer multitude does not make the vanity or evil of Dreames; nor are [Page 158] Dreames therefore evil and vain because of multitude.

  • For Dreames may be thus evil where multitude is not, &
  • Multitude may be, yet the Dreames not evil.

1. Multitude may not be, yet the Dreame not good but evil: yea in a single Dreame there may be much evil couched and caused, through the close concurrence of divers vanities.

2. Multitude may be, yet the Dreame not evil but good. The door of the minde may be so close shut all the night, as to exclude vanity, that vanity is not able to enter. I remember how Ter­tullian apologises for Christians, When Cum boni cum probi coeunt cum casti con­gregantur non est factio dicen­da, sed curia, &c. Tert. Apol. adv. Gentes, cap. 39. num. 520. (says he) good men, honest men, many of them meet in a place, 'tis not to be con­demned for evil, or to be called a faction, &c. So when good motions, when holy thoughts, many meet in a heart, they are not therefore naught, because their number is great, whether it be by day or by night. 'Tis vanity and not multitude that makes Dreames evil.

2. Dreames that for their vanity are evil through multitude, are made more [Page 159] evil. As when things are good, the more the better; so when things are evil, the more the worse: This greatens and aggravates the evil of vain Dreams, when of them there is a multitude. Multitude augments the malady, and theMultitudo pec­cantium auget peccatum. malady of vain Dreames is made more dangerous by the means of such a mul­titude.

Now multitude is a word which the Wise man might well prefix to Dreams of vanity, for a double cause:

  • Because men that have vain Dreams are a multitude, &
  • Because a multitude of mens Dreams are vain.

First, A multitude of men have vain Dreames. O what vain and foolish fancies flee up and down in very many mens mindes, not onely in the day, but at all hours in the night. Bernard does1. Sunt cogita­tiones otiosae & ad rem non per­tinentes, &c.2. Sunt violent [...] cogitationes & fortius adhae­rentes.3. Sunt cogita­tiones faetidae & immundae, &c. distinguish mens thoughts into three sorts:

  • 1. Are thoughts or imaginations, vain, idle, roving and impertinent.
  • 2. Are thoughts or imaginations, violent, strong and immoderate.
  • 3. Are thoughts or imaginations, [Page 160] vile, foul, and fearfull, uncleane.

The first kinde he compares to thin clay, that sooner slips off and cleaves not: The second to tough clay, that sticks fast: The last to loathsome and stinking mire and mud that cleaves close. Now a multitude of men, the feet of whose souls do not stick in the foul mire, yet are found in the soft clay: Though they come not to the last and worst sort of [...]ordid and vile motions, yet they are in the first sort of silly and vain imaginations: Day and night though they hatch not Cokatrice eggs, yet they weave Spiders webbs both awake and asleep. Isa. 59. 5. Vain Dreames.

Secondly, A multitude of DreamesDe nocturnis & de quotidianis obs [...]aenitatibus loquamur quas tales ac i [...]nu­meras legiones Daemonum ex­cogitaverunt, &c. Salv. de Guber. Dei. li. 6. in men are vain. In the night-time fil­thy Dreames, [...]oul imaginations may fall on mens mindes, but that is more seldome, when yet Dreames vain and imaginations foolish are found frequent. The Devil in lustfull thoughts came like a stranger at night, to Davids heart, as Peter Martyr observes from Nathans Parable, 2 Sam. 12. 4. At night came in a traveller to the rich man. He spared of his own flock to dress for the wayfaring [Page 161] man that was come in to him, &c. Un­clean cogitations came in as a way faring man at night, yet this was not ordinary. Filthy motions that come not in all the day, may turn in at night and take men asleep, but this not usuall, when yet vain thoughts for a long time together in men may take up their lodging. How long shall vain thoughts lodg in thee, Jer. 4. 14? Lodging properly imports a place of night-abode. Vain thoughts that are going and coming, coming and going in the day, have in mens mindes their constant lodgings at night. Then they generate, procreate, increase and mul­tiply, then they grow into great mul­titudes. Multitude Multitudo van [...] & vano­rum multitudo post multas va­nita [...]es festināt. Noli numerare, noli imitare. Aug. in Psa. 39. commonly goes on the evil hand, and the most usuall evils are commonly found in multi­tudes, which also makes them more evill. To vanity in Dreames may well be joyned multitude, for vanity fills many of our Dreames, yea most of our Dreames are filled with vanity. And as for their vanity-sake they are evil, so for their multitude-sake they are more evil. In the multitude of Dreames are divers vanities.

[Page 162]And thus we have the malady o­pened.

Secondly, See the Remedy or the me­dicinable course for the cure of this common disease, to heal and help a­gainst Dreames of divers vanities.

  • 1. This is Expressed,
  • 2. This is Applied.
  • Expressed in the Substance of it, &
  • Applied to the Subject of it.
    Ʋbi timor Dei non est, ibi omne malum. Vide Luth. loc. x. de usu legis Theologico. Semper timere Deum debemus quia peccatum semper cubat in foribus, vanitas in cordibus. Luth. loc. 1 2. 5ae. classis.

The substance of the Remedy, is the true fear of God: But fear God.

The subject of the Remedy, is every individuall or particular man [Thou:] But fear thou God.

Herein manifestly meets both man and God: God and man both meeting in this commanded Fear.

  • God as the Person feared of man, &
  • Man as the Person fearing of God.
  • No person so fit to be fearing of God as man, &
  • No person so fit to be feared of man as God.
  • 'Tis Gods due to be feared of man, &
  • 'Tis mans duty to be fearing of God.

1. Gods due is this fear from man. Psal. 76. Thou, even thou O Lord art to [Page 163] be feared. vers. 11. Take away fear and take away God. Hence Learned Zan­chius [...] derivatur a verbo [...], mutantur [...] into [...]. Zanch. de Natura Dei. would have the Greek word [ [...]] to be derived [...]. signifying such as disclaim fear do deny God, and who ever will own God must acknowledg his fear: This fear is a firm pillar, up­holding the Throne of God in the hearts of men. New imaginations would wax so wanton and wild, as to overthrow Gods throne in the world, were it not for this fear.

2. Mans duty is fear towards God, Eccles. 12. 13. Fear God and keep his Commandements, for this is the whole du­ty of man. This is [...] the whole man, the whole of man. Such a duty is this fear of God, as all men, and all man must be engaged therein. He that castsTime Deum & mandata ejus serva, hoc est omnis homo: er­go absque hoc nihil est homo. Bern. off the duty of fear, casts off the condi­tion of man. Without this fear, as God he seemeth nothing towards man, so man he ceaseth (says Bernard) and is nothing towards God.

He, who hath none of this fear, both denieth the Lord to be God, and himself to be man: or at least he leaveth him­self languishing, and as a dying man in a [Page 164] malady, denying the medicine: The medicine or curing remedy of man in his maladies is this fear of God: This fear of God is a [...], an universall salve for soul-sores. The sores in the Text are severall, the disease divers, the malady lies in a multitude. Divers va­nities in a multitude of Dreames: yet this one potion well took up, this one plaister well laid on, delivers, recovers and causes a cure. This fear of God is an excellent Antidote against the entring venome of various vanities in those di­vers Dreames which men may have in multitudes. In the multitude of Multa somnia nihil aliud sunt quam vanae quaedam nostra­rum affectio [...], c [...]gita [...]io [...]u [...], &c. Ʋ [...]nbrae & imagines in phantasia reli­ctae, hae autem nihil futurum significant, sed in praesenti va­nam mentem demonstrant. Zanch. Tract. de Divin. Dreames are divers vanities, but fear thou God.

The words thus farre unfolded, two Points come to be concluded.

1. That the vanities of Dreames are evils, every man ought to use means for their preventing, and his own preser­ving.

2. That the best means a man can use for his soul-preserving and a sure pre­venting the vanity of Dreames, is by his true and due fearing of God. In the multitude of Dreames are divers [Page 165] vanities, but fear thou God.

For the more full improving the first Point that reflects upon the malady, to wit, The vanities of Dreames: I shall assert four things I conceive conside­rable:

  • 1. That they are such motions as are certainly evils.
  • 2. That they are such evils, as to which each man is subject.
  • 3. That against the evil of these, men may be defended.
  • 4. That for a defence against these evils, each man must use means

First, That Dreames of divers vani­ties are undoubtedly evil.

The evil of such Dreames is disco­verable in a double way;

  • Negatively, &
  • Positively.

Negatively:] These Dreames they are not good, therefore evil. There areVid. Polan. Syntag. Theol. li. 6. ca. 38. & Amesi. li. 3. de conscien. ca. 18. de Adiap. no Adiaphora, or middle matters in the motions of mens mindes: In every matter the minde of man imagins, is either some commanded good, or some forbidden evil. A great Expo­sitor well distinguisheth between the [Page 166] actings of man, externall and internall: The extrinsecall acts (says he) may be Actus e [...]terior secundum se nec bonus nec ma­lus: Actus inte­terior sive eli­citus, sive impe­ratus semper vel bonus vel malus. Externus actus propter connexi­onem cum actu interno bonus aut malus est. Tostatus. Quaest. 29. in Exod. in themselves neither good nor evil: but acts intrinsecall are always evil if not good. The influence of the inward acts upon the outward, causeth some goodness or evilness to be alway therein: And therefore the inward acts themselves are certainly either good or evil, and evil if not good. All the actings of the soul in the fancy, whether man be awake or asleep, if they be not verily good, they are certainly evil. Those imaginations that are not good in the day, must needs be evil in the night: Vain thoughts in the waking-day are naught, and there­fore in the sleeping-night they are not good but evil, then also Dreames of va­nity be verily evil.

Positively.] These vain Dreames do plainly appear to be evil, by observing,

  • Whence they arise, &
  • What they comprise.

1. They arise and proceed from such a principle as is evil and not good, and ther­fore are not good but evil. Vain Dreames we cannot say they come from the God of Grace, or from the Grace of God: [Page 167] but we may say they proceed from sinne and Satan, from that remaining vanity that is in mens hearts and mindes. What is good is from God, and what is from God Boni si quid ha­beo a Deo sump­si. Mali multum habeo non a Deo sed a meipso. Aug. Epist. 52. Bo [...]a mea non sunt mea: sed mala mea, mea sunt, & quia mea ideo mala. Hugo Card. is good: but what is not from God, but from a mans own evil heart is evil. From a mans heart proceed such va­nities as vent themselves in divers Dreames, that are therefore evil.

2. They comprise those things that prove them evil.

Dreames vain they contain, Omis­sions and Transgressions.

Omissions.] There is in them a neg­lecting of that good which God hath much apted man to, and enabled him for, by giving him an active soul that never sleepeth, but being always awake, may be the readier for any good work.

Transgressions.] There is in them aO quam malum cogitationibus ineptis alienari & capi cum a Domino devia­ris quasi sit ali­quid quod magis debeas die & nocte cogitare. Cyprian. de Orat. Dom. swerving from Gods express precept▪ and the proper practice of a pious man, to meditate in the Law of the Lord both day and night, Psal. 1. 3.

As God hath given man a meet Or­gan, his inward mind, night and day to be thinking with; so God hath given a man a meet Object, his holy Law, day [Page 168] and night to be thinking on. But now vain Dreames take the minde off from Gods Law, and in the retired time of the night turn it aside, &c. This is evil. The Lord does not allow mans minde the least time to be idle and vain there­fore when it is vain and idle, that is evil. Are vain thoughts evil, and are not vain Dreames? Are vain words and works evil, and are not vain Dreames? In vain Dreamings there be vain think­ings, and in vain thinkings there beCogitatio est cordis agitatio. vain actings, and the vain speakings of the retired soul with it self. Deut. 15. 9. Beware there be not a thought in thy evil heart, [...], so the Septuagint read it: Beware that there be not a secret word within thy heart, the Toties ante De­um peccando la­bimur, quoties a recto itinere in­timae cogitatio­nis pede claudi­camus. Greg. in cap. 34. Iobi. evil whereof is hid. In Dreames of va­nities there may be much evil hidden, evil secret yet certain: The soul by thinking speaks vanity secretly to it self, though no man besides sees or hears: In vain Dreaming there is foolish think­ing: Now the thought of foolishness is sinne, Prov. 24. 9. In vain Dreaming there is the souls idle talking. Now of every idle word a man must give an ac­count, [Page 169] Matth. 12. 12. To conclude this. If Dreames of vanity were not an evil disease, what need this prescribed reme­dy, viz. The fear of God? By the fear of the Lord men depart from evil, Prov. 16. 6. There is an evil with certainty in Dreames of vanity.

Secondly, That these Dreames are such evils to which each man is subject, and with which any man may be much as­saulted.

These Dreames whose vanities are divers, be common to men from a two­fold cause;

  • The temptation of Satan, &
  • The corruption of Reason.

1. Satan hereto tempts. As some en­tice away children in the day, by bring­ing them idle bables and toys to play with; so Satan subtilly draws away mens mindes in the night, by sending in foolish fancies and vain Dreames to please them. As Aaron made Israel na­ked, stripped them of their ornaments, set up before them a golden Calf, which they were so pleased with, that they played about it; so Satan makes men vain, by bereaving them of their right [Page 170] mindes and rich endowments, by re­presenting such forms and foolish fi­ctions,Apud latinos vocabulum [Vani] idem sonat ac falsum, mendacium ideo Diabolus qui fallax & men­dax est vanita­tes amat, pro­creat. as about which their hearts dance, their thoughts take delight. Satan himself is knowing, but would have men ignorant; himself is doing, but would have men idle; himself is subtill and serious in considering men, Job 2. 3. but he would have men to be foolish, slight and vain, wild, wanton and dally­ing with ridiculous deeds and Dreames, not considering any thing serious.

2. Reason herein is corrupt. Men doRatio est intel­lectus actio qua reale a vano, verum a falso, utile a nox [...]o, honestum a tur­pi intùs disqui­rimus ac dis­cernimus. Illy­ricus clav. Scri not discern between truth and falsity, virtue and vanity, but take trees for men, an Image for God, a shadow for the substance; and so are soon misled, lost and wildered in the night. Naturall reason, like Abrahams Ramme, is so en­tangled in the briars of sinne, that 'tis soon taken and sacrificed to vanity. Reason in mans soul is like a dimme candle in a dark lanthorn, no marvell if in the night-time the steps of the minde stumble, and the fancy falls into Dreames of divers vanities.

Yea reason is so erroneous, ignorant and corrupt, that for these foolish [Page 171] Dreames, man is frequently found, with a minde

  • Ready to receive them, &
    Ad omnes va­nitates mens prompta & pro­ [...]livis etsi cum ad meliora mens enititur, quasi contra ictum fluminis conatur, &c. Greg. Rom. Mor. li. 11. c. 28.
  • Prone to produce them.

1. To receive them ready. Melting wax is not more apt to take the stamp of the Seal, than mans minde is incline­able to the impressions of vanity.

2. To produce them prone. 'Tis ob­served that soon after Adam was vitia­ted with sin, he had vanity for his Sonne, viz. Abel, whose Name so noteth. Abel or vanity is the proper progeny of sin­full man. Now no way so soon may sinfull mans vanity vent it self, as in absurd Dreames, or by idle imagina­tions, in sleep, &c.

Thirdly, That against the evil of vain Dreames, men by good means may finde much defence.

For a freeing, escape, avoidance and prevention of vanities in Dreames,

  • God can do enough, &
  • Man may do much.

1. God can and does keep off divers. By nature all men in their mindes are equally corrupt. 'Tis an epidemicall disease to all alike incident, what the [Page 172] Apostle asserts of some; They become vain, [...], in their imagina­tions. By nature (says One) all are of Omnis sanguis concolor. Pe­trarcha. the same colour, and were it not for Gods discolouring grace, it would in all so appear: Vanity would be alike visible and vigorous, as in all sorts of persons, so at all sorts of seasons, viz. day and night. And as in all times, so in all ways would vanity vent it self: No Dreames so vain, but would be inPlures sunt gra­tiae privativae quam positivae. Aquin [...]s. all equall, did not God evidently dif­ference men by his preventing mercies which are many, yea say some in number the most. Such are the sufficiencies of mercies to prevent vain Dreames: what Dreames so vain, but mercy to prevent is sufficient.

2. Man may do a great deal against such Dreames: consider

  • Both wherein,
  • And whereby.

1. Wherein: Man by the use of means may much hinder vain Dreames,

  • In their frequency, &
  • In their permanency.

1. Dreames may not be so frequent and abounding in their diversity and [Page 173] multitude, through means that men may use, they may much prevent these foolish fancies, that like Ignes fatui, doIgnis fatuus est fumus crassior in imo aere per Antiperist [...]sin nocturni frigoris accensus, &c. Magir. Philos. ca. 2. lib. 4. in the night-time much mislead the minde.

2. Such Dreames may not be so per­manent, constant and abiding, not so long and lasting, so throughly and du­rably drawn out, as in many persons for the most part they be.

Secondly, Whereby: or by what course may Christians keep off the va­nities of Dreames, that if they enter the door, they may not dwell in the house. Of this more fully hereafter: yet some­thing for present we may ponder, pro­ving Dreames to be hinderable, viz.

  • By diligence in the day, &
  • By vigilance in the night.

1. Day-diligence: Dreames that can­not be kept off when they do come, may yet before they come. By a pre­sent opposing the visits of vain thoughts when awake, we may much hinder them in sleep. As breeding-birds where they sit at night, they commonly build their nests in the day: In the day did we break the nests of these flying birds, they [Page 174] would not so readily roost with us at night.

2. Night-vigilance: That is whenCorpus cubando dormit & ani­ma vigilando surgit, agit som­nus siquidem è corpore est a [...]que in corpore ope­ratur. Aug de Immort. Ani­mae. ca. 14. the body is asleep, let the soul not only be waking but watching, so as not to let them in, or at least not to allow them a common lodging. In the receit of such Dreames, even the soul is in some sense asleep, or if it be awake, it does not watch: The keeping up a good watch, is a good means to keep out Dreames evil.

Fourthly, To use all good means to keep out these evil Dreames, is every Christians duty.

The duty of a Christian lies more in­ward than outward; not so much in hand-work as in heart-work, in heart­watching and diligent heart-keeping. Keep thy heart with all diligence, Prov. 4. 23. [...] cum omni custodia, with all keeping keep; or, prae omni custodia, above all keeping keep thy heart: the Originall will well bear both.

The words do plainly and perem­ptorily impose a personall, perpetuall, universall and principall care for heart­keeping.

[Page 175]1. Personall: Every single man must take care for the well-keeping his own heart: Keep thy heart.

2. Perpetuall: Now and ever the heart must be carefully kept. Keeping, keep thy heart.

3. Universall: Every man must keep his heart with all kindes of keep­ing. With all keeping keep thy heart.

4. Principall: Though a man must with care keep other things, yet his heart must be kept above all, Above all keeping keep thy heart. Each man must and ought to keep his own heart, his soul in all its faculties, before all things, through all times, from all evils,Vide Bernard. lib. Meditat. cap. 9. and therefore from these night-evils of vain Dreames. Those praecited words of Solomon, some reade them, Above all watchings watch thy heart: now pro­perly watching is a night-work against night-enemies and evils. These evils are enemies that assault the Soul in the night season, against which a double watch is not too much: To guard and safeguard the whole soul against vain Dreames; Diligence is a Duty.

  • For they will else be hurtfull towards men,
  • [Page 176]And men else will be faultfull towards themselves.

1. Hurt will be to men by vainNox a nocendo, quia in nocte no­cemur. Dreames not prevented. That which is evil will do no good; what is evil in the cause will be evil in the effects: The effects of vain Dreames may do much harm if not hindred. This appeareth

  • By what they oppose, &
  • How they dispose.

1. They may oppose the immission and introduction of Dreames divine, they may interrupt the mindes opera­tion in serious Dreames. Why might not the minde at the same time be solid and serious as well as idle and vain, if some impediment were not put by their interpose?

2. They may dispose the heart, open the door of the house and let in worse evils then themselves: Hence DreamesHae cogitationes quum peccatores in animum in­duxerunt ad reliqua pecca­torum genera ruunt. Basil. Hom. qd. Deus non est author malorum. vain and foolish may make way for Dreames vile and filthy. A common Inne that admits of idle persons, may lodg the worst of guests: yea Dreames of vanity in the night-time, may in­cline to deeds of vanity in the day­season.

[Page 177]2. Fault will be to men if they use no means to prevent vain Dreames. Towards vain Dreames men may be faulty:

  • By an efficiency, &
  • By a deficiency.

An efficiency by doing what may fur­ther them;

A deficiency by not doing what may hinder them.

Yea that which men do not seek toQui non vetat quando potest, jubet: & qui non prohibet, juvat. hinder, they may be said to further: As he is said to command an evil that does not forbid it; so he may be said to set forward such vanities, who is not sedu­lous to intercept them: That which is a mans duty to perform, is his sinne to neglect. To take care to keep all evil out of the heart, and to keep the heart off from all evil, 'tis the duty of man to use meanes. His fault it may not be that such evils enter; but 'tis his fault when meanes he does not use against their en­trance. See what the Church confesses as her fault, Cant. 1. 9. Mine own vine­yard have I not kept. All sorts of vani­ties they hurt mans choicest vines, and wrong his inward vineyard which he ought to keep, and must use meanes to preserve.

[Page 178]Thus have I passed through the parts of the first Point. I proceed

Secondly, That the best means to pre­vent the vanities of Dreames, is by a per­sonall fearing of God. But fear thou God.

This Point will also afford us four considerable par [...]s.

  • 1. That fear is a fitting affection to prevent Dream-vanities.
  • 2. That God is the proper object for such preventing fear.
  • 3. That this preventing fear must be found in every person.
  • 4. That each person must abide active in this fear for prevention.

First, That to prevent the vanities of Dreames, fear is an affection fit.

To all vanities this opens a door to be without fear. The Apostle speaks of some, Jude 12▪ who are found feasting Timeas ne non timeas. Bern. Epist. 87. Hoc ipsum ve­h [...]menter timere debes quia nihil times. Aug. de Temp. 214. themselves without fear. Such there be, who buy and sell without fear, eat and sleep without fear: no marvell if multi­tudes of various vanities fill their fan­cies: 'Tis a fearfull matter to be a fearless man.

All fear we grant is not fit, yea some fear to prevent evils and resist enemies [Page 179] is unfit. That we should serve him in righ­teo [...]sness and holiness without fear, Luk. 1. 74. As in Paradice there was a for­bidden fruit; so in a Christian there isSine timore ini­mici, sed cum timore Domini. Gorran. a forbidden fear.

  • There is a Desponding fear, &
  • There is a Defending fear.

1. There is a fear that strikes a man down, enfeebles him and makes him faint and fall, this is not fit.

2. There is a fear that stirres a man up and sets him to seek his own safety, to be valiant and vigorous in his own defence, and this fear is fit. This fear [...]. Aristot. Ethic. lib. 3. cap. 6▪ as it expects evil against a man, so it excites man against the evil: 'tis as the Centinel that is ever awake, gives the whole soul an alarum, and cries arm, arm at midnight. [Fear.]

Secondly, That fear which prevents the vanities of Dreames, must make God its object: 'tis a fear that must reflect upon God. That fear which is defen­sive, and proves preservative against evil of all sorts, it must be found effe­ctuall for two things,

  • To unite the Heart, &
  • To stablish the Heart.

[Page 180]1. Fear must unite and make the heart one, for the heart while it is divi­ded, scattered and severed asunder, any evil easily enters, it lies open to all vani­ties, iniquities and sins.

2. Fear must stablish and make the heart firm, for while the heart is unsta­ble, stragling, wandring and wavering, 'tis quickly carried away and turned a­side to sinfull vanities. Now fear will never effect these things, but as it re­ferres to God; 'tis the fear of God that unites and makes the heart one: Unite my heart to fear thy Name, Psal. 86. 11. or as the Septuagint reads it, [...], &c. Make myHi [...] timor Dei est animae an­chora per quem corda n [...]stra fluctuant [...]a fir­mitèr stabiliun­tur, &c. Greg. Moral. lib. 6. heart one in thy fear. 'Tis the fear of God that establishes the heart, that it does not start or depart from God: I will put my fear in their hearts, and they shall not depart from me, Jer. 32. 40. One well compares this fear in the soul to the Anchor of a Ship, that where it is well fastened in God, it holds head and heart firm, that the wind of vanity prevails not. It makes a man in his motions sober and serious, whereas other fear, says a good Author, causeth [Page 181] a kind of drunkenness that filleth aEst timor hic ma [...]us, quaedam ebri [...]t [...] umbras finge [...]s & ab umbris fugiens. Basil. Ser. 2. de Jejunio. mans heart and head with foolish fan­cies. So then to prevent these vanities [Fear God.]

Thirdly, That this fear by which such vanities are prevented, must be found in every person.

As every man God-ward must have a faith of his own, so a fear of his own: 'Tis not another mans fear of God, no more then another mans faith in God will do me good. As every man must have his faith, to possess what is good for himself; so every man must have his fear, to oppose what is evil against himself. This evil-opposing-fear every man hath

  • A capacity for it, &
  • A necessity of it.

A capacity every man hath in his soul Facta est anima rationalis capa [...] Domine maje­statis tuae, ut à te solo & nullo alio possit im­pleri. Aug. Soli­lo. cap. 30. to receive such a fear: That soul which is capable of the God of fear, is it not ca­pable of the fear of God?

2. A necessity every man hath, such a fear in his soul to receive. Whoever hath the malady, needs the remedy: 'Tis not another mans taking of physick will cure my sickness; nor another mans [Page 182] fearing of God will heal my heart of va­nity. To prevent the vanities of Dreams every man must himself fear God. [But fear thou God.]

Fourthly, That in this fear of God that preven's the vanities of Dreames, men must remain active.

This part plainly imposes, as refer­ring to this fear,

  • The Duration, &
  • The Actuation thereof.

1. During must this fear be both day and night. 'Tis observable, Solomon for a certain cure of heart-evils, requires the constancy of this religious fear▪ Prov. 23. 17. Let not thy heart envy sinners, but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long. The night is included in the day, when in this fear men must endure, that would help their hearts against en­vy or any other evils: To lie down and rise up in this fear, to wake and sleep in this fear, &c.

2. Acting this fear must be in men, and men acting in the fear of God. This fear must not barely be in them as a pas­sion, or upon them as an oppression. Gen. 35. 5. The fear of God (is said to be) [Page 183] on the Cities round about. The fear ofTimor est du­plex, filialis & servilis, timor filialis suos ha­bet actus, scil. revereri Deum. Aquinas 11ae. Quaest. 67. 12ae. Q. 67. 22ae. Q. 7. Q. 22. God must not be set upon men as their burden; but men must be set upon the fear of God as their business: not only the imprinting and implanting of fear in the habit thereof, but the imploying and improving this fear in the actings thereof; this will arm the heart against all evil. It must be fear in its activity that fences the minde against Dreame­vanity.

  • Vanity to advance it self is active, &
  • Others are active to advance vanity.

1. Active is vanity for its own ad­vancement. Originall corruption is ofPeccatum na­turale in nobis, etsi non sit actu­ale, est actuo­sum, &c. Aqui­nas 12ae. Quaest. 82. an active motion to promote it self all manner of ways, amongst which this is one, in Dreames of vanity: these are as running streames from that spring, and as sprouting branches from that root.

2. Others are active for the ad­vancementNequissimi ho­stis est illa vel prima calliditas & ars doli ple­na otiosos ani­mos vanis cogi­tationibus fati­gare, &c. vancement of vanity. Satan herein is subtill and sedulous, 'tis a prime and principall project of his to promote va­nity, to fill the mind with foolish fan­cies, idle thoughts, and fond conceits. So active then ought men to be by this [Page 184] fear of God, to defend off Dreames of vanities that else may arise in multi­tudes. In the multitude of Dreames are divers vanities, but fear thou God.

Thus having done with the Doctri­nall part, all that shall pass in the Ap­plicatory part, I shall reduce to a double head;

  • A disswasive from Dreames of vani­ty, &
  • A perswasive unto the fearing of God.

From Dreames of vanity, I shall en­deavour to disswade, by affirming four things;

  • 1. They are Displeasing,
  • 2. They are Disprofiting,
  • 3. They are discomforting,
  • 4. They are Dishonouring.

1. Displeasing are vain Dreames to a holy God and men truly good. As Idol-Images made by mans hand are for­bidden of God; so Idol-Images made in mans minde are offensive to God. Ezek. 8. 12. Sonne of man, hast thou seen what the Antients of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his Imagery: or in the secret of their [Page 185] imaginations, as some render it? Men notLavater. Calvin. onely in the lightsome day, but in the dark night, not only in the chamber of their house, but in the chamber of their hearts, have such imaginations of vanity, that are like Images of Idolatry, displea­sing to God: And a man godly is God­like, displeased with himself, when he findes his heart framing such Images ofNon enim erat apud eum ima­go non vanit [...] sed veritas, non effigies ignava sed solida for­ma justitiae. Beata anima quae est instar dom [...] Jacobi in qua nulla si­mula [...]ra nulla effigies vanita­t [...]. Amb. de fu­ga se cul [...]. cap. 5. vanity. Ambrose speaking of Laban searching the Tents of Jacob, and yet not finding his Images, say▪s thus, Laban found them not, for though they were there as hidden of Rachell, yet they were things hated of Jacob: And O blessed soul (says he) that is as Jacobs Tent, in which is never found any allowed Image, or approved representation of vanity. Though sometimes Satan may send in such by his subtilty, yet 'tis with secret dislikes and soul-dissents.

Secondly, Disprofiting are without doubt vain Dreames: Dreames of va­nity the minde is busie in, but hath no benefit by. Tertullian calleth Dreames,Tertull. de A­nim [...]. cap. 45. the idle things of the busie soul. The soul of man as it may be idle in business, so busie in idleness. The soul properly [Page 186] indeed in idle Dreamings cogitates much and negotiates nothing: nothing to purpose, nothing for profit, and so all is vain. Almonds (says One) men A [...]ygdal [...] di­ [...]untur inanes non in quibus nihil est, sed quibus id quod inest est inutile, &c. Clem. A­lex. Stroma­tum. lib. 7. account empty and naught, not in which there is nothing found, but in which that which is found is of no profit: So mens imaginations are said to be vain, when though there be many movings therein yet no advantage thereby. By idle Dreames the soul is as a sieve of vani­ty, in which nothing is left but what is branny and bootless. Yea as they bring in nothing of benefit, so they keep out what might prove for mans profit: and indeed what a man gaineth not in, he loseth by: A man is the worse for that by which he is not the better.

Thirdly, Discomforting may men finde Dreames of vanity: Vain Dreames are as Drone-Bees that fly out, but bring in no honey, yea that honey in the hive Prov. 19. 15. Isa. 29. 8. they finde, they feed upon and devour. In Dreames vain there may seem some­what pleasing for present, but after disappointments produce more pain than peace. As a hungry man dreameth and behold he eateth, but he awaketh and [Page 187] his soul is empty; or as a thirsty man dreameth and behold he drinketh, but he awaketh and his soul is faint. ThatDum studiorum sublimium vi­gore mens nostra non constringi­tur vanitatis infimae fame sauciatur. cannot solace and comfort which does not satisfie and content; but in vain Dreames is nothing solid to satisfie, and so the soul is left comfortless, yea in a suffering case. That cannot cause de­light to the soul, which bereaves the soul of sweet liberty: O how fast is a man bound upon his bed with these cords of vanity, so that his soul cannot get loose, Isa. 5. 18.

Fourthly, Dishonouring Dreames of vanity, strip the soul of its dignity. Sca­liger observes, that there be three things that do distinguish a man from, and dignifie him above all creatures about him, viz. Reason, Speech, and Hands. Greg. Past. Cu. Scaliger Exer. cit. 256. Reason is the first and chief, and that wherein he may and ought most to ex­cell: A man may much debase himself by the idle words of his mouth, and vain works of his hands, but nothing renders a man so base as the abuse of his Reason in foolish fancies. 'Twas the dishonour of the Emperour Domitian, that he spent great part of his time in catching [Page 188] of flies; and Artaxerxes in making box hafts for knives. And does not this re­dound to mans dishonour, to spend day and night to pass away his time sleeping and waking in a multitude of idle ima­ginations made up of meer vanities? In such vanities to imploy the minde, is to turn a golden mill to grinde chaff: These poor things disparage mans pre­cious soul, principled to higher acts and ends. And O how vain a thing is man, if O quam vana res est homo, nisi supra vana se erexerit. Se­nec. Quaest. Natur. li. 1. Disce homo ubi grandis, ubi pretiosus sis, virtus te glorio­sum facit, sed vanitas te vi­lem demon­strat. Ambr. in Psal. 119. above vain things he lifts not himself, said Heathen Seneca. Virtue makes a man glorious, but by vanity even a mans soul is rendred vile, said a Christian Au­thor. Such things considered, may disswade, as from other sorts of vanities, so from vanity of this sort, to wit, vain Dreames.

2. Let us consider such things as may perswade unto the true fear of God. Against Dreames of vanity this fear hath a double power,

  • Abstractive, &
  • Attractive.

Abstractive, Drawing off from what may cause them: and Attractive, draw­ing on to what may cure them.

[Page 189]1. Things that may cause suchSciendum est quod somniorum cau [...]a duplex exterior & in­terior, &c. Aquin. 22 [...]. Quaest. 95. Art. 6. Dreames, from which the fear of God draws, are evils of a double kinde,

  • Externall, &
  • Internall.

1. There be evils externall, that may become the causes of vain Dreames, as the viewing of vain and idle objects, the hearing of vain and idle discourse, the conversing with vain and idle per­sons, these may probably make such impressions upon the mind of waking­man, as may move vain imaginations in his sleeping-time. Now the fear of God is a good meanes to remove a man from these evils: He that hath in his heart the true fear of God, will turn away his ears from hearing, and his eyes from beholding vanity. Psal. 119. 37. He will not sit with vain Discamus san­ctam superbiam & sciamus nos esse vanis homi­nibus meliores. Hieron. persons. Psal. 26. 4. Much less in his life will he himself walk after vanity, Job 31. 5. Of such men as have not this fear of God the Prophet speaks, They walk after vanity, and they are become vain, Jer. 2. 5. No marvell if men every way be­come very vain, who walk after vanity, who walk in a loose liberty, having no [Page 190] fear of God to give them limits. A good man walks at liberty, but the fear of God draws him back that he breaks not beyond Bible-bounds. Psal. 119. 45. I will walk at liberty, BEDDACAH, at large, for I seek thy Precepts. The precepts of God in his largest walks, were still the bounds of his steps, so that he did not vainly ramble or runne out day or night.

2. There be evils Internall, that may become the causes of vain Dreames, and these are drawn to a double head:

  • Primary and principall,
  • Secondary and consequentiall.

The primary first and chief cause of vanity in Dreames, is love to vanity, which is a common evil to every sonne of man. O ye sonnes of men, how long will ye love vanity? Psal. 4. 3. If I were (says Chrysostome) the fittest Honores Divi­tiae virtutes non sunt sed vani­tates, quid va­na ista miraris, quid ad ista quae abjectissima sunt inhias? in coelum animum intende. Chrys. Hom. 11. man in the world to preach, and had all the world as one Congregation before me, and had the highest mountain for my Pulpit, from whence upon all I had a Prospect; and if I had a voice of brass as the Trumpet of the Arch-Angel, that all might hear on every side, the Text I [Page 191] would preach of, should be that of the Psalmist; O ye sonnes of men, how long will ye love vanities? Vanity is that to which all the sonnes of men are long and large in their love; no marvell if their Dreames lie therein, when their love is thereon. Now the fear of God draws off this love; He loves vanity least that fears God most.

The secondary and things that follow this love to vanity, as vigorous occa­sions of vain Dreames, are other inclina­tions,* Primus Psal­mus unde scit. Beatitud [...]nem periisse inde re­cuperat. In con­silio abiit A­dam, id est, in Serpentis & mulieris Et nunc Adam noster, id est consensus noster beatus erit, si non abierit in consilio Serpen­tis & mulieris, id est, in consilio carnis & Dia­boli aut si abie­rit non ibi stet aut si steterit non sedeat aut si, &c. Arnob. motions and affections in the ef­fects thereof. From love to vanity comes consents to vanity, desires of va­nity, delights in vanity, &c. The mind that loves vanity, leans to it, lives in it, and is loath to be out either day or night. An old Writer well improves those words of the Prophet, Psal. 1. 1, 2. Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsell of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornfull. But his delight is in the Law of the Lord, and in his Law doth he meditate day and night. Because Adam (says he) walked in the counsell of the wicked, namely of the Woman and the [Page 192] Serpent, and so for a vanity lost his fe­licity. Therefore must we beware our Adam, that is our Reason, our Consent, &c. do not walk in the counsell of the Woman and the Serpent, that is of the flesh and the Devil drawing to vanity: Or if towards it they entice us to walk, yet let us not stand, or if stand, let us not sit down therein in the day, lest therein we lie down at night; but re­member our selves, how day and night we ought to meditate in the Law of the Lord. Now there is nothing like to this fear of the Lord, to draw back our consent to such as advance vanity to keep us from walking, standing, sitting, and lying down in vanity, and so day and night neglect the Law of the Lord, and our due meditation therein.

2. Towards things that may cure vain Dreames, consider our duty upon which by this fear we are drawn in a double way: To wit,

  • Of opposing and suppressing, &
  • Of purposing and practising.

1. We are to oppose and suppress all the present sproutings of vanity. That which we let sprout when awake, may [Page 193] spread when asleep. One well observes,Origen. that as under the Law, so under the Gospel are sacrifices to be slain: In stead of a Ramme, we must kill our angry passions, in stead of a Goat our unclean affections, and in stead of flying Fowls our vain imaginations. We should en­deavour to be the death of that vanity which fills our fancies: There should be some principle in us stirred up and carried out as Cain to kill this Abel.

[Habel] 'Tis the word which the Wise man in his Ecclesiastes does ordi­narily use to intimate vanity. The kil­ling of this Abel-vanity is an act of ver­tue, A [...]ibros. de Cain & Abel, li▪ 1. ca. 3, & 6. li. 2. ca. 9. and the greatest valour: The fear of the Lord will much help hereto. Hence a man hates vain thoughts, and so, soon subdues thoughts of vanity, Psal. 119. 113. That will not disturb when asleep, which we destroy when awake.

2. We must purpose and practise such other pious duties as conduce to this end, and they are of a double kind.

  • Some direct to God, &
  • Some reflect on our selves.

1. Towards God we ought to do [Page 194] much in prayer and praise: In prayer we are to supplicate God for pardon of Dreame-vanities, and for prevention of the vanities of Dreames. In praises we are to elevate and congratulate God, that we have had no more vain Dreames, and that our Dreames have been no more vain.

2. Towards our selves: Let us see unto those two things;

  • To use Reason in ways most sober, &
  • To think on matters most serious.

1. In sober ways to use our Reason: Ratio recta est lumine Spiritus directa, &c. Lips. de Con­stant. And that reason may be of the better use, it must be principled with Grace enlightened with the Spirit of sanctify­ing knowledg. One well comparethRatio est lumen animae solari si­milimum, &c. Philo de con­gress. quaerend. [...]rudition. gra­tia, &c. Reason in man to the Sunne in the Hea­vens, which if it hath not light enough to rule well in the day, no marvell if it mislead the mind in the night, and lets worldly vanitie, as the Moon bear sway.

2. On serious matters to set our thoughts most seriously. Some mens minds are trifling in things serious, and serious in trifles. 'Tis one of the high­est points of prudence and the praise [Page 195] of a man, to sute his mind to the mat­ters,Da mihi homi­nem qui transi­toria transitoriè, qui aeterna de­siderio ample­ciitur aeterno & prout res est co­gitat & talem audacter pro­nuncio sapien­tem. Bern. sup. cant. Serm. 50. and to let his thoughts be like to the things that he thinks upon: On hatefull things to have hating thoughts, on lovely things to have loving thoughts, on transitory things to have transient thoughts, on durable things to have enduring thoughts, &c. Let a man learn to delight his thoughts on the most delightfull things, and to let the best things have the best of his thoughts: Let us thus accustome the thoughts of our mindes while awake, and they will not work so vainly in sleep. Now the true fear of God is incentive to, yea comprehensive of all this good which makes for the preven­tion of vain Dreames.

Quest. Have not men fearing God and doing good, Dreames of divers va­nities?Homini enim optimo morta­lem vitam ad­huc agenti non potest contingere ut dimoto ac discusso omni nubilo phanta­si [...]rum, &c. August. de con­sen Evang.

Answ. Vain and foolish Dreames may be found in a man fearing God and minding good, but yet of such it may be said,

  • He is not so actuall in them, &
  • They are not so usuall in him.

1. Such Dreames he is not so actuall [Page 196] in as others, his heart does not so de­light therein or dilate thereon, his mind does not so mount up to meet vanity in these night-visits. 'Tis set down as the singular character of a god­ly man, He hath not lift up his soul to vanity, Psal. 24. 4. Vanity may fall upon his soul, but his soul does not lift up it self to vanity.

2. Such Dreames are not so usuall in him as in others: Others, the Dreames they have most common and more con­stant, [...], vocat non sim­plices cogitatio­nes, sed pruden­tissimos animae discursus esse vanos h. e. irri­tos, &c. Paraeus in locum. are idle and vain: Vain are not only the ordinary, but the exquisite thoughts of naturall men, that are excel­lent in gifts: The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise that they are vain, 1 Cor. 3. 20. If in their wakeing-time their thoughts are vain, how vain then sure in their sleep? Men fearing God vain Dreames may befall them, but they be not so frequent, they do not so multiply. Indeed Dreames vain might in good men be found fewer, did they draw out, and act up the fear of God as is fit. David a man much in the fear of the Lord, in stead of vain and foolish fancies, and to arm against idle [Page 197] and ridiculous Dreames, I have remem­bred thy Name O Lord in the night, Psal. 119. 55. The Apostles counsell to Chri­stians is exceeding observable; Let us not sleep as do others, 1 Thes. 5. 6. Good Christians ought, as in other things to differ from others, so in their sleep: Others so sleep as therein they have a multitude of Dreames of divers vani­ties, but let our bodies sleep, the fear of God possessing our souls. In the multitude of Dreames are divers vani­ties, but fear thou God.

V. Of Troublesome and Affrighting DREAMES.

JOB 7. 14.‘Then thou skarest me with Dreames.’

HAving done discourse upon Dreames, wherein the De­vil without doubt hath the most immediate hand: I come now to discover such Dreames whereof Aristotelis ra­tiones contra somnia divina refelluntur. Vid. Parcum com. in Gen. ca. 41. pa. 409, 410, &c. God without question is the most considerable cause, and these we may observe of two sorts:

  • Dismaying & Admonishing.
  • Affrighting & Instructing.

Dreames of dismaying fears Job af­firms he found from God; Then thou skarest me with Dreames.

[Page 199] Job in this sentence sets forth his sad condition concerning things that did sore afflict his soul and much move his fear.

His fear is found to be great, as refer­ring to four severall heads:

  • 1. The Manner it was in,
  • 2. The Matter it was with,
  • 3. The Person it was from,
  • 4. The Season it was at.

1. The Manner after which his fear is set forth to be great, we find expres­sed by his being skared. Skaring does intimate not onely a reall fear, but a raised fear, or fear extream, extendedSee Mr Caryl in his most ex­cellent Expo­sition upon Job. and terrible, dejecting and prostrating fear, fear which flung Jobs mind as flat as his body, bowing that also down up­on his bed, as some give the signification of the word. The Hebrew word we may English in a differing way, accord­ing as it is in Latin translated variously, as such may see who consult Expo­sitors.

Thou skarest me.] Take it as laid forth in a fourfold phrase;

1. Contristas me.] Thou makest me exceeding sorry, thou causest seas of [Page 200] sorrows to gather within my soul, se­verallTimor est tri­stitia non essen­tialitèr sed ra­tion eobjecti tri­stantis si▪ sit praeseas. Aquin. 12ae. Quaest. 41. 4, 3. soul-sadding objects thou repre­sentest to my mind at once.

2. Consternas me.] Thou doest asto­nish me: Thou makest many fearfull things together, and together thou set­test them as about my bed to look me stern in the face.

3. Conturbas me.] Thou troublest me: Thou makest many amazing thoughts to meet within my mind at midnight. Perturbing thoughts thrust into my soul, like waves in the troubled sea.

4. Conteris me.] Thou splittest meConterere plus est quam fran­gere significat in minutissimas partes concute­re. Illyric. clav. Script. 174. asunder and cut'st me in shivers, I am not barely broken but beaten in pieces, and as corn in a mill ground to powder: He was as it were put into convulsion fits, and the powers of his soul pulled awry; he was wracked upon his bed, distorted, distracted, torn and tormented in mind; yea a terrible trembling took hold on his whole man. This for the Manner.

2. The Matter with which Jobs fear was greatned, are said to be Dreames; Thou skarest me with Dreams.

[Page 201]The Dreames wherewith this godly man was skared, are considerable,

  • In their Nature, &
  • In their Number.

1. The Nature of these Dreames areTimor non est virtus Theolo­gica, quia non habet Deum pro principali obje­cto sicut amor sed malum. Aquin. 22ae. Quaest. 19. evil▪ evil being the proper object of fear. Hence the Schoolmen determin, That fear is not like love, a Theologicall vertue, because God is not the principall object thereof, but evil. A two-fold evil they also evidence,

  • Sinfull, &
  • Poenall.
  • Or evils of Sinning,
  • And evils of Suffering.

1. Sinfull evils, or evils of sinne, which are of all evils the worst, and by the best men most feared. Sinfull Dreames Jobs soul might possibly be assaulted with. If in his sleep were anyHomo Somnian­do c [...]gitans de peccatis carna­libus semper movetur cum aliqua affectio­ne vel concupis­centiae vel hor­roris, &c. A­quinas 22ae. Quaest. 154. Art. 5. such sinfull proposals, they sure soon made him to shrink and shake with fear, having in his heart, as hatred against them so horrour about them: such Dreames did undoubtedly skare if they came.

Object. If these skaring Dreames should be sinfull, How then could God be their causer?

[Page 202] Answ. Suppose the Devil was the cause of the Dreames, yet God the cause of the fear: The Dreames dreaded from the Devil, yet the dreading of the Dreames through God and his grace: Where the grace of God is not, sinfull Dreames are pleasing, not perplexing: and might Satan have his mind, such Dreames should please good men with delight, and not possess them with fear: from God it is, that sinne as defiling isTimor duplex naturalis de malo corporis corruptivo & supernaturalis de malo animae contaminavo. Aquin. 12ae. Quaest. 41. Art. 3, 5. affrighting. 'Tis from the nature of man to fear death that corrupts the bo­dy, but 'tis from the grace of God to fear sinne that pollutes the soul.

2. Suffering evils, or evils more purely poenall and painfull, and these evil things most properly proceed from God, and with such evil Dreames God did most probably afflict Job. Job God might dismay in his Dreames with representations of sinne, not to sinne: Sinnes past God might make to appear: What he had done awake, God might cause him to see in his sleep with soul­amazements. But respects to sinne laid aside, the Lord in sleep might arrest Job as a Judg. Though towards evils [Page 203] of sinne, 'tis not fit for God to act any thing, he being the purest essence in Heaven, yet 'tis meet for God to act about matters of pain, he being the su­pream Judg of the earth. God is so good, that he is not the least actor of sinne: but God is so great, as he is the chief inflicter of pain: and though painNon solum cul­pa sed poena est malum, etsa mi­nus habet ra­tionem mali, &c. Aquinas 1a Qu. 48. 22ae. Qu. 9. be inflicted of God who is good, yet in it self it is evil: and though pain to be sure is a less evil than sinne, yet still it is evil. Sinne is an evil that disturbs Gods quiet in Heaven; and pain is an evil that opposes mans peace and rest upon earth. How was Job interrupted in his rest, and broken in his peace through painfull and dolorous Dreames, the dread of which, evidences them evil in their nature.

2. In their Number considered it seems they were many; not Dreame, but Dreames in the plurall: manifold Dreames and Dreames about manifold matters that might amaze him, divers and differing Dreames for degrees and kindes wherewith Job was skared: Dreames of fear, that like flames of fire flashed fast in his face: Dreames of [Page 204] terrors, that like troops of Souldiers upon him thrusting thick in his sleep: Dreames of horror, that like billows of water broke into his chamber and overflowed his bed, that he lay as drowned therein, enduring many do­lorous thoughts. Many things may a man suffer from one single Dreame, but how many things be suffered, when sad Dreames be multiplied? this was Jobs case being skared with Dreames.

3. The Person from or by whom Job was skared, was God himself, Thou skarest me. Had these DreamesEph. 6. 16. been barely the Devils-darts, or as burning brands flung into his bed onely by Satans hellish-hand, his heart would not have been so shaked with fear: butJob 6. 4. finding God to have his hand therein, and to be the cause thereof, this, this en­creased his skare: Thou skarest me. As if he had said; O Lord thou who in the day of my prosperity wast to me a Paradise of pleasure, causing thy joy to shine as a bright Sunne into my soul, thou didst comfort, ravish me and refresh me oft, yet now thou makst me all agast. Thou who in the night of my adversity, I hoped [Page 205] wouldst have sent into my heart soul-sweet helps from Heaven, wouldst have set up cleer candles of comfort about my bed: Thou not onely leavest me in the dark, but skarest me with Dreames. For skares and fears to be from the Devil or this wicked world, were no wonder; but for a good man to be frighted of God, that God will not let him sleep without skaring, this is strange and astonishing:Judg. 9. 15. Numb. 21. 9. Rev. 21. 23. For fire to come out of the bramble is no such marvell, but for fire to come out of the Vine; for the brazen Ser­pent to become a stinging Serpent, and for him to wound that should heal, to skare that should comfort: for the Lord who uses to be to his servants as a Lamb, to be like a Lion, and to roar up­on them in their sleep, this is strange indeed. Luther hath some such saying; If all the men in the world were mustered Nihil est tenta­tio vel universi mundi & totius inserni in unum conflata ad eam qua Deus unus homini contra­trarius ponitur, &c. Lutherus. as Souldiers, and all the Devils in Hell gathered as their Commanders, and were upon their march against a good man, this would not so much dismay him as one God against him. Nothing so perplexes a pious man as the appearance of Gods displeasure, suppose with Dreames of [Page 206] this God-skaring Job. Thou skarest me with Dreames.

4. Observe the season when with Dreames was Job thus skared: to wit,

  • When he found no comfort awake, &
  • When he looked for comfort in sleep.

1. When awake he had no comfort, but such painfull dolour, as not onely deeply distressed him all the day, but wherewith he was wearied whole nights having no sleep. Wearisome nights are appointed to me. When I lie down, I say when shall I arise and the night be gone? I am full of tossings to and fro to the dawn­ing of the day, ver. 3, 4.

2. Asleep he could have no quiet: Though sometimes after days of dismall distress, he looked at night for peace­able repose, but even then were his hopes disappointed: Skaring Dreames came into his minde when he expected comfortable sleep in his bed. When I said, my bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaint; Then thou ska­rest me with Dreames, &c. Commonly good men then finde it worst from God, when they expect most from the creature, and from the creature finde [Page 207] least when they look for most. Scaliger Scaliger. Exer­ci [...]. 18. 27, 28. tells of a tree, from which when a man departs, ramos pandit, it spreads the boughs; but when a man comes to it, ramos constringit, it shrinks up the leaves: This is the usuall carriage of the creature; when men are from it, it seems to spread it self into wide promi­ses; but when they approach neer it, it shrinks up it self from any good perfor­mances. Thus Jobs bed served him, when his expectations towards it were most raised in the day, then his pertur­bations upon it most encreased in the night; his bed was so filled with thorns he could lie at no ease, even then when he looked for the largest and sweetest rest. When I sai, dmy bed shall comfort me, then thou skarest me with Dreames.

The further discourse of these ska­ring Dreames, will consist of a double part,

  • Explicatory, &
  • Applicatory.

In the Explicatory part I shall unfold as referring to Dreames that affright, four things:

  • 1. The Matter they may be of,
  • [Page 208]2. The Movers they may be from,
    Ex somnio Ne­buchadnezeris mentem ejus fu­isse quidem gra­viter affectam. Jun. lectiones in Danielem.
  • 3. The Persons they may be to, &
  • 4. The Reasons they may be for.

First, The Matters about which Dreames may be made amazing, are of two sorts:

  • Matters of Gods Majesty, &
  • Matters of Mans Misery.

1. The Majesty abiding in God, mayIncutiunt sacra quendam horro­rem. be so represented in sleep, as to make Dreames terrible. Gen. 15. 12. And when the Sunne was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abraham, and loe an horror of great darkness was upon him. Diodat ob­serves,Excellens sensi­bile destruit sensorium. that such a Majesty of Gods presence did appear to Abraham, as set horror upon his heart in his sleep, the excess light of Gods glory darkened his mind. Daniel also was thus in sleep made afraid, Chap. 10. 9. As the tran­splendent brightness of the Sunne dazles the eye and makes it trickle down wa­ter; so the surpassing excellency of Gods Majesty, dismayes the mind, and makes it tremble with fear. The Isra­elites God is not like the Israelites­cloud, that had a dark side as well as a bright. In God is no darkness, but all [Page 209] such abundant brightnesse abides in God,N [...]n dantur purae tenebrae in m [...]ndo: Sed lu [...] pura datur in Deo. which when it breaks out, makes man afraid especially when the manifestati­ons thereof are made in his sleep.

2. Sad miseries coming upon men may in sleep be so represented as to make Dreames dreadfull. Dreadfull Dreames men may have out of miseries appearing and approaching.

  • To others more remote, &
  • To themselves more immediate.

1. Dreames men may have amazing that concern miseries making hast upon others. Thus Daniel had dreadfull Dreames and visions about the Desola­tions of Jerusalem and the Jews, and their bloody persecutions by the Ty­ranny of Antiochus and others, Dan. 7. 1, 2, 3, 15. Paraeus tells of a Terrible Dream he had, Aprill. 1618. Me­thought Vide Heidel­bergam totam oc [...]ult [...] in [...]e [...]dio undiqua [...]u [...] [...]u­migantem, &c. Philip. [...]ar in vi [...]a Da [...]dis [...]a [...]i oper [...]s ej [...]s prae [...]ixa. (sayes he) I saw all Heidelberg on a thick Smoak, but the Princes palace all on a light fire. This fell out soon after when the Romish enemy entred with fire and sword, himself indeed be­fore that Fatal blow, was in mercy re­moved to celestiall bliss.

2. Dreames men may have amazing [Page 210] about miseries that concern themselves and their Seed, their Families and Poste­rities. Read Dan. 4. 5, 6, &c. A Dream (saith Nebuchadnezzar) that made me afraid, my thoughts upon my bed, and the visions of my head troubled me. I saw a Tree, the Boughs strong, the Leaves faire, the height great, and behold one from Heaven came and cryed, Hew down the Tree, cut off the Branches, &c. This pressed hard upon him and his House. That place, Gen. 15. 12. That reports the great horrour which fell up­onHorror ingens in cutitur dormi­enti. Fortè signi­ficat horrendos eventus quos passurus erat Abraham & posteri ejus pas­suri. Abrahams heart in his sleep. Pareus sayes it might signifie such sad Events, as afterward himself and his Seed suffer­ed.

Secondly, The Maker of, or the mover in and about such dismaying Dreames, we are concerning, all to consider God himself.

  • Either as Single.
  • Or as Supreme.

1. Sometimes hereto God moves Single, Solitary, or himself alone. There are some Dreames which though they fall with feare, we may be sure they Solely proceed from God, their [Page 211] matter and their meaning is good; but Dreames whose drift is dread, whose Scope is Skaring, whose Intention is af­fliction even such Dreames are Darts shot from Heaven to shake the Heart. Mans Body being a sleep on his bed, God awakens his Conscience, causeth a light that affrights, or rather a darkness that dismayes. Darkness is most fi [...] to move fear. That fear may fall in, God deals in a double darknesse. To the Naturall darknesse of the Night he adds a Spiri­tuall darknesse drawn over the face of mans Soul. One well observes. That in the beginning God said, Let there be Dicit Deus fiat lux & facta est, sed non di­cit fiant tenebrae & factae sunt, tenebras ordi­navit, non cre­avit. August. in Psal. 8. Light, and there was Light, but said not, Let there be darkness, darkness he order­ed, not ordained, &c. But herein God as he orders ordinary darknesse, so he ordaines another darknesse setting the Soule into Dreames of dreadfull fear. This is Gods doing. I forme Light and I create darknesse, I make peace and I cause evill, I the Lord do all these things, Isa. 45. 7.

2. At all Times in affrighting Dreames God is Supreme. Suppose Satan as concerning such Dreames hath some [Page 212] subordinate hand, yet whatever herein he actually does

  • Is through Mans Furtherance,
  • And through Gods Sufferance.

1. Man furthers him and affords him what fits his designs, some suteable matter of sin and sorrow prompt for his purpose. As by the filth of Sinne that Satan finds in the Soul he sets for­ward defiling Dreams; so by the Guilt of Sin in the Conscience, Satan is assisted to bring forth affrighting Dreames. Or Dreames dreadfull, the Devill draws out of Some sorrows, darkNon daemon est qui fortasse mae­rorem movet sed m [...]ror poti­us vir [...]s doemo­ni administrat & malas cogi­tationes sus [...]itat Chrysostom. de providentia, lib. 2. and black in mens minds. Chrysostom observes, that Satan does not so oft admi­nister sad matter to harm the Soul, as the Soule by administring sad matter does help Satan: When Satan cannnot con­strain Mans minde to himself, yet he cannot conform himself to the mind of man, and accordingly draw forth Dreames filthy or fearfull. It hath been a great Question with some long Quest. sin [...] viz. Whether the Devill can rai [...] tormes, Tempests, and Thunders, in the Heavens? And the best Authours Answ. conclude the Negative according to the [Page 213] Canon of an Orthodox Counsell, That Siquis credat quod Diabolus tonitr [...]a, fulgu­ra, tempestates sua authoritate facit, sicut Pri­scillianus docet anathemasit. Concil. Braca­rens. 1. cap. 8. if any should believe the Devill could by his own power raise Thunders, &c. Let him be accursed. They grant that he may as Gods Instrument Collect, Di­rect, and Transport winds and storms, as water and fire, to one point, and against some Place, or Personas he did against Job, yet not of these be the originall Author, so mind Troubles as Thun­ders, and Dreames as Storms in the Heart, Satan as Gods Instrument may manage them, not make them. Or at least,

2. God suffers him, else herein he could not act any thing. God can in Dreames dismay mens minds without Satan concurring, but Satan cannot come at Mens minds to dismay them without God permitting. A good wri­ter observes, That when Satan did a­nyNisi extra De­um Diabolus fuisset, contra Iobum nihil fuisset molitu­rus. Didymus in caten. 8. thing against Job, 'tis said, he went out from the presence of the Lord, having gone first in, to get leave: Leave he must have or he cannot molest by the least troubles some thought. For the troubling mens thoughts and amazing their minds, the Devill hath a double de­sire,

  • [Page 214]That God would let him do, what he can, &
  • That God himself would do what he cannot.

1. Satan desires God would suffer him to goe as far as he can, and that he may use the utmost power he hath to oppose mans peace, and that he may astonish man day and night without re­straint.

2. Satans desire is, thatwherein his power comes short, God would engage, and what he cannot reach, that God would strike; and when God does strike, the Devill gives his blow, and so makes mans feares more fearfull, and his Dreames more dreadfull. As there be mixt Temptations to Sinne wherein Sa­tan joyns with man against God, so there be mixt perturbations of Soule, wherein Satan joyns with God against man. As when man is up to offend God, Satan sets in to make his sin the worser: So when God is up to afflict man, the Devill runnes in to make his sorrow the greater. The Devils first desire is to draw men into Dreames of comfort, and to beguile them with the [Page 215] Images of a false peace, in which (asPlus metuend us est inimicus cum latenter obrepit, cum per pacis ima­ginem fallens occultis accessi­bus serpit unde illi nomen ser­pentis Cypria. de symp. praeta. Cyprian observes) he is most to be fear­ed, yet he also much desires to distract men with Dreames of terrour, and with his shrill Trumpet to give them loud al­larms in the dead time of the Night; Yet still in these Night-feares God hath the greatest hand. Thou skarest me.

Thirdly, The Persons on whom God causes such skares to come, viz.

  • Both wicked, &
    Sathan hoc di­es noctes (que) sa­tagit ut nos po­nat in perturba­tionem ut semper cogit [...]mus a [...] Judicio Dei Luth. Loc. 17. 2. ae classes.
  • Godly Men.

1. Wicked Men are the primary and principall Subjects of such dismaying Dreames. By Dreames Terrible, God overturnes them in the Night. Job 34. 25. In the Night they meet with a double misery.

  • Hinderance from Sleep, &
  • Horrour in Sleep.

1. From Sleep they are hindered. TheirExcitat eum cu­piditas tor (que) e invidia steri i tas proventuum infaecund a per­turbat solic. tat abundantia, &c. Ne ipse quidem Deus e [...]m d [...]rmir [...] permittit. Am­bres. heads lye as upon a pillow of thornes which way soever they turne, they take no rest. The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep, Eccles. 5. 12. Not the abundance of his goods, but the abundance of his [Page 216] Guilt wherewith his goods are gotten, together with the cares through which they are kept. In sleep they have hor­roursAnxietates ani­mi eos pungentes tanquam aculei &c. Lyranus. as Hornets humming in their ears and stinging of their Hearts. The cursed Cananites God threatens to send Hor­nets among them, Exod. 23. 28. which Austin and others expound to be per­plexitiesMu [...]tum miser est qui nec illud tem­pus quod natu­raliter quieti datum est qui­etum habere po­test Hugo de Sanct. Vict. in Ec. Ho. 12. of mind, that Day and Night should amaze them. Most miserable wicked Men, toiled in the Day and trou­bled in the Night, not having that time quiet which is naturally given for qui­etnesse.

Object. Wicked Men for the most part have quiet Sleep in the Night without any affrighting Dreames, or Dreames of vex­ations.

Answ. 1. They may thus be vexed in the Night, though they Vapour in the Day. Seneca hath some such saying as this; Men lye who say they think there is Mentiuntur qui dicunt se non sentire esse de­um nam & si tibi affirmant interdiu, noctu tamen & sibi▪ dubitant. no God, for though in the day when they are awake they talk high; yet in the dark Night and during Sleep they have their dismaying doubts. In the Night men have such Dreames of a certain Deity as draws in sad perplexities, which yet in [Page 217] the day they tread down.

2. They have Dreames of affrighting matter though with that matter in Dreames they are not affrighted. That Sinne is matter of affrighting which they Dreame of with delight. See the drunk­ards Dreame, Prov. 23. 35. We finde the Dreame of Pharaohs Baker, Gen. 40. 5. It figured forth his Death, yet therein we do not reade him dismayed. But such dismaying Dreames are the most proper portion of wicked men.

2. Godly men may have troublesome Dreames as we see in Jobs case. Au­stin Contra Dei hasce afflictio­nes & multi formes doemo­num incursus quis suae inno­centiae fidit, &c. August. de civi. Dei. lib. 22. cap. 22. Totam noctem in somnem dux­erim, ipsa cor­dis mei pene­tralia concepta maestitia occu­pavit, &c. Basil. Epist. 1. 86. ad Bos­phor. Episcop. hath a considerable saying. Against these afflictions from God and incursions of the Devill, who can think his inno­cency shall defend him when oft children are so vexed in their Dreames as they shriek and cry out. Into such an afflicted case may Gods Saints be cast, as trouble­some thoughts may keep them from Sleep, and in Sleep their thoughts may be troubled; Their minds may be a­mazed, and their hearts sore wounded as with arrows from Heaven.

Fourthly, The reasons for why God affrights in Dreames, referre to Men.

1. Good Men, God upon them may set loose such Dreames of feare,

  • To Correct Evill, &
  • To promote Good.

1. For the correcting of some Sin which they have committed, or where­to they are enclined. An affrighting Dreame is Sinnes blacke shadow. Sin that flatters them by Day, frights them at Night. For that which hath been pleasing awake, they are perplexed in sleep.

2. For the promoting of Soule-good, some-sleep troubles may come,

  • To provoke them to Prayer, &
  • To prepare them for Peace.

1. In order to prayer, Dreames may be drawn in dreadfull. That good man Pareus upon his terrible Dreame relating to the desolation of Heydelberg O Deus cle­mentissime or [...] averte omen si­nistrum & ser­va Sareptam tuam a vastati­one hostium in­tus & foris. broke out into prayer, and after when awaked breathed out earnest desires to God for preventing that dismall Doome.

2. In Order to peace, God may make Dreames to perplex.

  • As to settle Soul-peace the surer,
  • [Page 219]And to raise it the higher.

1. That such peace may have the surer setlement, God affrights them with Night-sorrowes to establish their Day-comforts: upon such shakes in the boughs, Spiritual Joy grows more strong in the roots.

2. That such Joy and peace may be set at the higher price; they may the more esteem the light of sweet comforts when they come out of the dark of the Night-sorrows. One reports of theProcopius Ar­chiepis [...]. spala­tin. Concio in Rom. 12. 13. page 13. people neer the Pole where the Night is many moneths long, as soone as there is any appearance of the Sun they deck themselves brave and get to the moun­tains leaping and singing, Behold the Sun, the Sun.

2. Sinfull men God may dismay withƲnde malignus hostis conturbat [...]t interimat in­de misericors Deus hoc erudi­at u [...] vivat. Gregor. moral. lib. 2. Per diem vex­atur laboribus per noctem agi­tatur timoribus, August. in Psal. 50. Dreames,

  • As a meaning of Mercy, or
  • As a warning of Justice.

1. In Mercy, to rouze and awaken Conscience to consider their misery through sin, that therein they cannot sleep quietly. A Dreame gives them such a check as to Jonah, What meanest thou O sleeper, arise and call upon thy [Page 220] God; or such a blow on the Soule, as Peters on the side; Arise up quickly, haste out of this prison.

2. In Justice, to assure them sad pu­nishments do approach, that shall op­presse them for ever. Now so misera­ble as not a night quiet, but much worse is coming that will crush them in Hell. These things thus unfolded as referring to fearfull Dreames in their Explicatory part,

Secondly, I proceed to their applica­tory part, in which I shall speak only to such Dreames as are afflictive, evill and painfull, and wherein Gods displeasure may appear: where I shall propose Du­ties of two sorts,

  • Some antecedent, &
  • Some consequent.

1. Things antecedent that concerne our escape of such skaring Dreames. Consider;

  • The Causes why, &
  • The courses how.

1. The causes why from such Dreames we should labour deliverance, are,

  • The good they oppose, &
  • [Page 221]The evill they produce.

Dreadful Dreames they do undoubt­edly with power oppose.

  • Peace possessed, &
  • Ease expected.

1. Present Peace they oppose: Dash out Candles of comfort, rout lawfull delights, they put a period to Saints present prosperous estate. Time was when Job lay upon his bed and Gods candle shined over his head, he went through the darknesse of the night, by the Lords light. O that I were as in moneths past (sayes he) when his Candle shined upon my head, and by his Light I went through dark­nesse, Job 29. 3. Now Job is upon his bed and the Candle out, he goes through the darknesse of the Night and his Soul sees no Light. Visions he hath, but they are terrifying and all his Dreames skaring. Not onely men but great men mounted in the height of Honour, have been brought down by Dreames of terrour, Dan. 4. 4, 5. I Nebuchadnezzar was at rest in my house and flourishing in my Palace, I saw a Dreame that made me [Page 222] affraid, and the thoughts upon my bed, and the visions of my head troubled me. When he was as a tall tree whose boughs were strong, Leaves faire, fruit much, &c. he beheld in his sleep one coming down from Heaven, and thought he heard him say, Cut down the tree, breake the branches, shake the Leaves, scatter the fruit, &c. This fill'd him with feare, so that all the comforts of his Court could not quiet him.

2. That future ease which men ex­pect, such Dreames present. When night comes, men lye down and look for rest. Jacob in his travells when the Sun was set and Night overtooke him, though he was abroad in the o­pen fields, and had onely a pillow of stones, yet he slept sweetly and Dreamt comfortably, Gen. 28. 11. Three things when they meet do much help comfortable and quiet sleep viz.

  • The silence of the Night,
  • The safety of the House,
  • The advantage of a Bed.

Job had all these. In the Night time he had his House to be in, and his [Page 223] Bed to lye on, so that he looked for rest but found no refreshment, In stead of being eased he was amazed, In stead of quiet sleeps he had skaring Dreames. He expected the benefit of his Bed, and comfort of his Couch, but his bed was his rack and his couch his torment, whence comes the complaints of the Text. All the comforts that a man hath in hand, or in hope, may be dashed by a dreadfull Dreame.

2. For the evils that such Dreames may produce, they are either,

  • Of Sin, or
  • Of Misery.

1. Through a terrible Dreame a manSomnia fallaci ludunt temera­ria nocte & pavidas mentes falsae timere jubent. Proper­tius, lib. 3. Eleg. 4. may fall into following sins, distemper­ed passions, ill expressions; yea some men they have set about very sinfull actions awake, from those sad impressi­ons they have received in their sleep. I have read of a man, who Dreaming he had lost his money, awaked in a fright and immediately went and murder­ed himself. It seems Job had some desperate thoughts against himself in the day, through those dismaying things whereof he Dreamt in the Night. [Page 224] Thou skarest me with Dreames and ter­rifiest me with visions, so that my Soule chuseth strangling, and death rather then life. Hyppocrates a learned Physician reports, that some of his patients posses­sed with these night-perplexities, plung­ed themselves into deep pits in the day, and divers ways attempted their deaths.

2. Through terrible Dreames a man may fall into much following misery. Hence some have been bereaved of the use of reason and smitten with madness. Diodate and other Scripture-Interpre­ters note, that Nebuchadnezzar after his dreadfull Dreame, Dan. 4. soon fell into a sad disease called Lycanthropie, wherein he lost all manner of humane understanding, forsooke the society of men, became brutish, fierce, and wild like a Beast, living in the fields for the space of seven yeers. The dis­temperatures that were upon his Dreames, and the terrors upon the In­terpretation thereof did dispose him thereunto. Hence some men have been as it were in hell, while they havePolidor. Virgil. Ang. hysto. lib. 25. been on earth. History reports, of Rich­ard the third, the Night before he was [Page 225] slain in Bosworth field, he had a most terrible dreame, wherein he thought all the Devils in hell pulled, and haled him, in hideous and ugly shapes; the fixed feares of which, helped his fall upon the following Day.

These things may be as cogent causes, to keep off what we can, such skaring Dreames.

2. For Courses adjuvant whereby such Dreames may be kept off: They con­sist,Sic enim est comparata mens nostra ut quae interdiu cupidus vidit, appetit, timuit, horum si­mulachra noctu dum ab exter­nis sensibus est, avocata somni­and [...] videat vel videre se putat. Zanch. Tractat. de Di­vinat.

  • Of Caut [...]ns, &
  • Of Counsels.
There be,
  • Evill things against which we must be vigilant, &
  • Good things about which we must be diligent.

Would we sleep free from affright­ing Dreames.

  • There be some things we must beware we have not,
  • There be other things we must beware we do not.

Take heed we have not our hearts possessed,

  • With covetous Desires,
  • With carnall Delights.

[Page 226]1. Desires covetous may cause the Lord to let loose unquiet Dreames. Thus God makes the world to be as an Engine, to torment mens mindes at midnight. 'Tis a punishment upon a worldly Man, what Solomon mentions, Eccles. 2. 23. All his dayes are sor­rowes, and his travell grief, yea his heart taketh not rest in the Night. In the Night his body may take some sleep, [...], &c. Clemens Alexand. Pae­dagog. lib. 2. c. 5. but his heart takes no rest; that lies as upon a Pillow stuffed with thornes through perplexing Dreames. 'Tis said of the Nightingale, that in the Night-season, he sets himself with a thorn at his breast, that, when he is asleep, may prick and prompt him to awake and sweetly sing. A covetous Man his worldly care commonly in the Night sets a thorn at his breast, whence are many sad sighs in his sleep, and groanes that argue grief.

2. Delights carnall cause God to let fall afflicting-Dreames. In the Day Men lay in their fuell, and kindle a fire of fleshly contents, their lustfull plea­sures are as sparks in the light of which they walk, but when Night comes, the [Page 227] hand of the Lord lays them down in sor­row. Isa. 50. 11. The Lord lets loose the Devil by Dreames to dismay their mindes. We read, Judg. 4. How Jael gave Sisera milk and butter when he was awake, but struck him with a nail and hammer when he lay asleep; So Satan, while Men are awake, tickles them with sinfull pleasures, and when they are asleep, torments their mindes with dismaying Dreams; that perplexes in the Night, which pleases in the Day.

Again, Would not we have God to skare us with Dreames; let us take heed,

  • That we do nothing against clear
    Lege Luther. loc. 42. 3 e classis de pavoribus Conscientiae.
    light, &
  • That we do nothing against Gods Saints.

1. Against the Light of Knowledge, let us not act any thing: Hence comes Conscience to be startled with astonish­ing Dreames: that's a sad Instance of Francis Spira, who was not onely a learned Lawyer, but a very knowing Christian, yet revolting to the Romish Religion, he fell into such a despairing condition, that he was filled with the horrors of Hell, not only in his wake­full [Page 228] times, but in his sleeping Dreames. Alas (sayes he to some that came to comfort him) no sooner in the Night can I snatch a little sleep, but I see therein, the Devils come flecking into my cham­ber, and gathering all about my bed, and terrifying me with dismall noises: These were the sorrowfull Sequels of his se­verall sinnes against Knowledge and Conscience.

2. Against the people of God let us not act any thing; Some that have been enemies to Gods servants, God hath sore­ly afflicted with affrighting Dreames: cruelties and tyrannes have turned some under these torments. Charles the ninth of France after his cruell Mas­sacre could hardly sleep, and when he did, he was haunted with hideous feares; Oh the loud peales that Protestant bloud have rung in the ears of sleeping Men. Apollodorus the tyrant dreamt that he was flead by the Scythians, and boyled in a seething Cauldron, and that his own [...]lutarch de se­a Dei vindi­cta. [...], &c. heart should say to him; I am the cause of this thy fearfull torments. Oh let us flee these things, all tendences therunto, and what may border thereupon, that no [Page 229] Dreams may dismay us.Si sapientia fi­de—Probè muniti fuerimus ne (que) domi sedentes metu concutie­mur neque dor­mientes phan­tasmatis turba­bimu [...]. cap. in Prov. cap. 3. ver. 24.

The Positive Meanes which we are to observe for prevention of perplexing Dreames:

  • Some are in respect of our Faith, &
  • Others are in respect of our Life.

In relation to Faith, we should labour,

  • To raise up our minds to God, &
  • To rest under the wings of God.

1. By Faith let us lift up our selves to God, so may we be above such Dreams: As in the air, the highest region is most free from tempestuous stormes, so in the earth, the heavenliest mind is best freed from troublesome Dreames: 'Tis written of the Aegyptians, by reason they live in low fenns where they are much vexed with Gnats; they use at Night to go up into high Towers, andHerodotus. l. 2. those creatures not flying so high, they are free from their disturbing stings: Whilst we live below, let us when Night comes, by the feet of Faith and Hope go up to God our high tower, that we may escape the stings of disturbing Dreames.

2. By Faith let us lay our selves upon God, reposing our selves under his safe wings, so may we be free from these [Page 230] Night-feares: Though it hath another sense, it may be of some use, which the Prophet speaks, Psal. 91. 4, 5. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: Thou shalt not be afraid for the terrour by Night: Little Chickens sleep under the wings of the Hen, and no harme can molest them; so if we sleep under the wings of Gods Promises, no Dreame shall distract us. Thus let us use our Faith.

In relation to life, let us labour,Lege Luther. loc. 42. 3ae. clas. de Antidotis tentationum.

  • To live holily, &
  • To live cheerfully.

1. Let us lead a holy life, that the Lord may not skare us with Dreames.

  • By putting away all iniquity, &
  • By the positive practice of piety.

Job makes his moan, that God skared him with Dreames; Zophar gives him good counsell for his cure: If thou pre­pare thine heart, and stretch out thy hands towards God: If iniquity be in thy hand, put it farre away, and let not wickedness dwell in thy Tabernacles; Then shalt thou lie down, and none shall make thee afraid. Job. 11. 13, 14. 19. We must go in Gods wayes with a firm foot, and take strait [Page 231] steps, not stumble in the Day, if we would not startle in the Night. Prov. 3▪ 23, 24. Thou shalt walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble; when thou lyest down thoushalt not be afraid, yea thou shalt lie down and thy sleep shall be sweet.

2. Let us lead a cheerfull life ever­more rejoycing in the Lord, that we may be delivered from these perturbing Dreames, the more light of comfort we have▪ when awake, the less darkness of terror we shall have when we sleep: the more spirituall joy in the Day, the more peaceable sleep in the Night.

  • The Light of a well­quieted Conscience, & Help much herein.
  • The Light of Gods lo­ving Countenance, Help much herein.

Lord lift thou up the Light of thy coun­tenance, sayes David; Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more then in the time that their corn and wine and oyl en­creased: I will both lay me down in peace and sleep, for thou Lord only makest me to rest in safety. Psal. 4. 6, 7, 8. [Peace and Sleep] In the sleep of his body, he had the peace of his mind. Much care is re­quired to compass such comfortable [Page 232] quiet and peaceable sleep, and at least to fence off affrights from the Devil in Dreames: shall the Devil be industri­ous by these to deterre, and not we be in­dustrious from these to be secure? 'Tis reported of Scorpions (Serpents soScorpion [...]. called from their scattering and casting their poyson Night and Day, up and down) how they link together to mo­lest sleeping-Men, one will stick fast to the roof or wall of the House, a second to him, a third to the second, and so make a chain till they reach the party asleep. The last stings and returnes, and so every one goes back in his order. This Eglinus upon the Revelation re­lates;Vide Eglinum in Ap [...]cal. the same may fitly be affirmed of the Devils those infernall spirits in their monstiou [...] molestings of some sleeping-Men: Now the course some have taken to▪ lie quiet, and sleep free from the stings of Scorpions, may be of use in this case.

Aelian relates, how in Lybia and other like parts, Men sleep in their boots, theyOcreatos dor­mire solere, &c. set their beds from the wall, and place the feet of their beds in pots of water, lying up in the highest Roomes to rest [Page 233] without such molests. In this manner 'tis meet for Men against these designs of Satan, to sleep in their spirituall ar­mour, to set their minds off from the earth, not to lay their hearts too near the walls of the world, to set the feet of their soules in the waters of godly sor­row for sinne, to lie up in the Galleries of high Meditations and sweet Contem­plations of God, which may arme against these Evils, and procure the contrary Good.

Thus we see what are Requisites An­tecedent.

2. The Subsequent things that serve for a Conclusion are upon a double Sup­position.

  • Suppose with such Dreames we are op­pressed,
  • Suppose from such Dreames we are pre­served.

If God does skare us with Dreames, our duty is,

  • To find the true sence of them, &
  • To make the right use of them.

That we may learn their lesson, care is required,

  • In making Praier to God, &
  • [Page 234]In asking Counsell of Men.

1. Inquire of God, we see; 2 Sam. 21. 1. That when the Lord afflicted Israell with yeares of famine, David enquired of the Lord the cause; and the Lord answered, it is for Saul, &c. So when the Lord afflicts us with Nights of feares, and Dreames of terror, we should seek of God the cause, what particular sinne hath most incensed God against us: God skared Job with Dreames, Job cries to God, saying, Shew me wherefore thou contendest with me. Job. 10. 2.

2. Consult with Men, so did Nebu­chadnezer when a Dreame had made him afraid, and thoughts upon his bed had troubled him: He entreats Daniel to tell him the interpretation thereof: All the wise Men (says the King to the Prophet) are not able to make it known, but thou art able, for the Spirit of the holy God is in thee, declare it therefore. Dan. 4. 9, 19.

The practicall Use we are to make of dismaying Dreames is,

  • To cease Sinne, &
  • To do Good.

1. Strive all that we can to get clear [Page 235] of sinne, so did Job; God skaring withPeccatum ho­mini vigilanti est inimicus blandiens, & somnianti est Scorpio pungens. Dreames, he cries to God, saying, I have sinned, what shall I do unto thee O thou preserver of Men? why dost not thou par­don my trangression, and take away my iniquity! Job. 7. 20, 21. The design of God in some such Dreames is to sever Men and their sinnes: God speaks once, yea twice, yet men perceive it not: In a Dreame in a vision of the Night, when deep sleep falls upon men in slumbrings upon the bed, then he opens the eares of Men and sealeth their instruction, that he may withdraw man from his purpose, and hide pride from Man, and keep back his soul from the pit. Job. 33. 14, 15, 16, 17.

2. We must set upon such things as are good, when Nebuchadnezer had had his troublesome Dreame, the Prophet thus applies himself, O King, let my coun­sell now be acceptable to thee, break off thy sinnes by righteousness, and thy iniqui­ties by shewing mercy, it may be a lengthe­ning of thy tranquillity. Dan. 4. 27. Let us upon such Dreames do what we can for the profit of our selves and others: Eliphaz (one of Jobs freinds) speaks of a Dreame himself had: In thoughts [Page 236] from the visions of the Night, when deep sleep falls upon Men, fear came upon me, and trembling which made all my bones to shake, &c. Job 4. 12, 13, 14, 15. Though some conceive it was a delusive Dreame, yet it may appear to be a Dreame divine, because it did suggest that which was to abase man and ad­vance God; ver. 17. Shall mortall Man be more just then God, shall a Man be more pure than his Maker? Eliphaz did endeavour to improve this Dreame for Job's profit, concluding thereupon his discourse, with these words; Hear it and know it for thy good, Job 5. 27.

Lastly. If we have peaceable sleep from Dreames disturbing,

  • The Mercy of God is to be prized, &
  • The God of the Mercy is to be praysed.

Gods Mercy is much to be confessed, if we consider

  • The malice of the Devil to draw such Dreames into all Men, &
  • The misery of some Men into whom such Dreames are drawn.

1. The Devil is malicious, and desires so to assault all the soules of Men: Satan himself is in continual torment, [Page 237] having no rest Day nor Night, when he is not in Hell, he hath Hill in him; and could he compass it, we should never be quiet; he would in the Day dismay us, and in the Night [...]noy us, and not suffer us to sleep one houre free from affrighting Dreames: therefore God herein does not only refraine himself, but also restrains the Devil, beats him back and binds him up, who otherwise would fly about, and as a scritch-Owl clap his wings at our chamber windows, crying over our beds and heads in the Night to break our rest: God doth not only himself forbear by Dreames to distress us, but keeps off our adversary that he cannot by skaring Dreames di­stract us; O marvellous Mercy! that's a sweet promise, Zech. 2. 5. I saith the Lord will be unto her a wall of fire round about: 'Tis an allusion to some Countries where abundance of wild beasts are, shepherds and travellers who would se­cure themselves and their flocks, make fire round about their lodgings at Night: The Lord is as a wall of fire round about our Night-lodgings, the Devil dares not approach to interrupt our rest: who [Page 238] would not admire this Mercy! Observe;

2. Some Men are so miserable who suffer under soul-skaring-Dreames, As that

  • When they are asleep, with fear they awake,
  • And when they are awake, they fear to sleep.

1. From sleep with fear they come: Many a Man hath met with those amazements in his bed, that have made him rise and runne from place to place and yet found no rest. Austin lively lays out such a lamentable Creature; He flyes from his Fugiet ab agro ad civitatem à public [...] ad d [...]mum, à domo in cubicul. Aug. in Psal. 45. tom. 8. fol. 286. bed-chamber into the house, from his house into the city, from the city▪ into the feild, but his enemy followes: he flyes back from the field to the city, from the city to his house, in his house up to his bed­chamber, but his enemy finds him, and his skared conscience cries upon him: Some after sleep are sweetly refreshed, but all his sleep is imbittered, he comes from his bed as one out of Hell; soul and body as those two possessed coming out of the Tombes, Mat. 8. 28.

2. To sleep with fear they go: As in the morning they rise up with terror, [Page 239] so with trembling they lie down atMiseriis corporis miseriis cordis, miseriis dum dormit, miseriis dum vigilat. &c. Bernard. de Consid. lib. 2. propè finem. In nocte dies desideratur in die, nox quaeri­tur nulla requie â perturbationi­bus. &c. Ambr. de bono mortis. cap. 3. Night, upon many a man is that made true: The Lord shall give thee a tremb­ling heart, failing of eyes and sorrow of mind, thy life shall hang in doubt, and thou shalt fear Day and Night; In the morning thou shalt say would God it were even, and at even thou shalt say would God it were morning, for the fear of thy heart wherewith thou shalt fear, and the sight of thine eyes which thou shalt see. Deu. 28. 65, 66, 67. Some that have been terrified with Visions and skared with Dreames have been afraid to think of the Night before it came, and amazed to remember the bed while yet abroad, but when evening is, the sinner sighs; This Night must I make my bed in Hell: oh what a mercy then is this, and worthy to be prized, our peaceable rest!

As we have the Mercy let God have the Glory.

  • Quiet sleep is the Gift of God, &
  • It is the Love of God to give sleep quiet.

1. 'Tis Gods Gift when we have it, quiet sleep does revive nature as the dew or small rain does refresh the grass; Now as the Prophet speaks, Jer. 14. 22. [Page 240] Are there any of the gods of the heathen can cause rain, or can the heavens give showres? So it may be said: Are there any of the creatures in earth or heaven that can give sleep? That God which gives showres of rain must give houres of rest; peaceable repose is Gods peculiar Gift.

2. 'Tis Gods Love when we gives it. Psal. 127. 2. For so he gives his beloved sleep; that is sleep with quietness: yea the Hebrew word [Shena] for sleep, be­ing with [Aleph] a quiet or resting letter, otherwise then is usuall, it signifies the greater quietness in time of sleep: And whereas some apply the place only to So­lomon who was called [Jedidiah] the beloved of the Lord; to whom God [...]. gave sleep: The Septuagint turne the Hebrew word plurally, so God giveth his beloved ones sleep: His Saints in ge­nerall God gives quiet sleep as a token of his love, yea in the times of their greatest perill: Thus Peter in prison when he was bound with chaines beset with souldiers and to die the next day, yet see how fast he was found asleep; Act. 12. 6, 7. The same Night Peter was [Page 141] sleeping, and behold the Angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison, yet Peter slept, till the Angel smote him on the side and raised him up: so God gives his beloved sleep, and let his beloved give him the honour, and the rather, because▪

  • Herein God answers our Praier,
  • Herein God fullfils his Promise.

Is it not our Praier that God would prevent affrighting, and afford refreshing sleep? and is it not Gods answer when in sleep he doth sustain us? I cried (says David) unto the Lord with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy Hill, I laid me down and slep [...], for the Lord sustained me, Psal. 3. 4▪ 5.

Is it not Gods Promise to vouchsafe sleep free from frights? Thou shalt lye down and shalt not be afraid, yea thou shalt lie down and thy sleep shall be sweet. Prov. 3. 24. Hence Gods servants while they are in the wilderness and woods of this world, they sleep safely, and Devils as wild beasts can do them no harme, Ezek. 34. 25. Have we through Gods blessing this benefit, let us abundantly give praise and live praise unto God here­upon.

[Page 142]Yea large praise belongs to the Lord for quiet sleep from Men of all sorts;

  • Whether sinnefull,
  • Or sanctified.

1. Sinnefull Men are much engaged to God for his common providence, that allows them as the mercies of the Board in refreshing food, so the mercies of the Bed in preserving sleep: upon the want of which nourishment nature would beGrande pro­ [...]ecto in vobis do [...]um Natu­rae requies est quae si minus suas exequatur partes quod re­liquum habet Natura totum turbabitur, &c. Be [...]n. super Cant. Serm. 84. weakened and wasted, disturbed and destroyed, and the wheeles of the whole man put out of order.

Indeed 'tis a wonder they can sleep quietly, miseries being many, present and approaching; poor wretches under Gods wrath a sad sentence of death, dam­ned already, every day in danger of a dreadfull arrest for desperate Debts▪ they are not able to pay: they lie on their beds as Damocles sate in his chamber, a naked sword hangs over their heads: The stone crying out of the wall, and the beame out of the timber answering it: Sinne lies at the door, the Devil dwells in the house, hell fire ready to burn them in their beds, yet they sleep: 'Tis secu­ritie in them, yet clemency in God that [Page 143] does not let loose affrighting Devils in skaring Dreames.

2. Sanctified Men are much engaged to God for his speciall providence in their peaceable sleepes, considering the deep dangers they may imagine them­selves in on every side, from desperate enemies of all sorts;

  • Both Devils, &
  • Wicked Men.

1. Devils that wait Day and Night to do them harme; did not God set His Angels to keep corpse-du-guard, and to encamp about their beds, how oft would the Devil beat up their quarters and sur­prize them with terrors? But through God,

  • He cannot affright, as he attempts,
  • He cannot effect, as he affrights.

1. Affright he cannot so oft as he at­tempts; he cannot cast in so many ter­rors as he makes trials: What Pliny Cauda semper in ictu est nullo­que momento meditari cessat ne quando occa­sioni desit. Plin. l. 11. c. 25. lib. 8. cap. 29. reports of the Scorpion is true of Satan, he is continually putting out his sting, when yet often he cannot reach the souls of Gods Saints, so as to fasten one fear.

2. Effect he cannot so oft as he af­frights; he skares them with that in the [Page 144] Night which he cannot accomplish in the Day; when he strikes them with Dreames, he would strike them with death; they should throughly feel the evils they fear; he cannot by rending inflict, though he does by roaring af­fright.

Indeed the Devil (says Bernard) is a Est quidem leo rugiens, sed gratias ago magno illi Leo­ni de Tribu Ju­dae, [...]gire potest, seri [...]n potest &c [...]ern. in Psal Qui habi­tat, &c. Ser. 13. roaring Lion, but I thank the great Lion of the Tribe of Judah, he roares but he cannot rend; but how much thanks is due to the Lord, who sometimes so stops this Lions mouth that he can nei­ther rend nor roare, not being able with the least fear to molest good Men.

2. Wicked Men may occasion Saints skares and feares, and did not God pre­vent thoughts of their monstrous malice, their cursed & cruell wrath, rage and fury would cause affrighting Dreames. Some of the Papists report of their St Dominick the Father of the Dominicans, how when his Mother was with child of him, she dreamed that she brought forth a wolfLege [...] [...]m [...]i [...] H [...]ae. Ovid epist. Paridis & [...]el [...]nae. with a fire-brand in his mouth, and such a manner of person he afterwards pro­ved: Wicked Men are like wolves with fire-brands in their mouthes, or like [Page 145] Lions breathing fire against the best of men. My soul is among Lions, I lie a­mong them that are set on fire, &c. Psal 57. 4. And would not such a lodging bring in skaring Dreames, but that a­gainst them God is good, through whose kindness we sleep secure: Lord how are they encreased that trouble me, many are they that rise up against me; I laid me down and slept for the Lord sustained me, Psal. 3. 1, 2.

Yea, Devils and men set aside, do not we to such Dreames dispose our selves? opening the doore to feares in sleep by needless feares when we are a­wake: even awake we oft trouble our mindes with meer imaginary matters, which might make our minds to imagine strange things in sleep: how justly might God punish us with Night-sor­rows, for not regarding our day-com­forts▪ The Eternall God would (saithIn cubiculo tuo obscuras tibi lucem. Radiare tibi vult Deus Aeternus, sed [...]ubilum facis tibi, &c. Aug. in Psal. 91. Austin) shine as a bright Sunne into thy soul, and thou darkenest all with Clouds of thine own creating, thou hangest thy bed-chamber with blacks, and when thou mightest be secure, thou troublest thine own head and heart with cares and feares: [Page 146] How good is God who doth not leave us in our sleeping-times to troublesome Dreames! That Dreame-dismayments do not amaze our mindes, 'tis mercy, To God be glory for ever and ever,


VI. Of Profitable and Instructing DREAMES.

Matth. 2. 12.‘And they being warned of God in a Dreame that they should not return to Herod, departed into their own Coun­trey another way.’

IN the former having fi­nishedSaepè è somniis discamus Dei, [...], &c. Paraeus in Gen. 21. what referrs to Dreames wherein God afflicts. I proceed to such Dreames whereby God instructs. For an In­stance of this sort we may observe the Dream in the Text. And they being war­ned of God in a Dreame that they should not [Page 148] return to Herod, they departed into their own Countrey another way.

Concerning this Dreame as here the Holy Evangelist sets forth, Four things are considerable.De hisce Magis lege, Theophi. lib. in Math. chrysost. in o­pe [...]. imperfect. Hom. 11. Ci­cero de divinat. P [...]in. lib. 20. Ambr. lib. 1. officio. cap 28.

  • 1. The Subjects of it,
  • 2. The Substance of it,
  • 3. The Receits of it, &
  • 4. The Effects of it.

1. For the Subjects or the men into whose minds God sent this Dreame: I shall only demonstrate them by three remarkable Things; Magi viri docti etsi barbari patria & domo relicta & lon­gam viam con­ [...]cerunt, & cum [...]enissent nulto metu a­ [...]rarunt, &c. Chrysost. Hom▪ 24. in 1 Cor. cap. 10.

  • 1. The Knowledg they h [...]d,
  • 2. The Voyage they made, &
  • 3. The Homage they did.

1. Knowledg they had. Hence they were called Wise men: In the days of He­rod the King, behold there came wise men, ver. 1. Their wisdome, under­standing, or knowledg is three wayes discoverable!

  • 1. By the Measure of it,
  • 2. By the Matter of it, &
  • 3. By the Meanes of it.

1. The Measure of their Knowledg and Wisdome was great, which gained them this name of Wise Men. [Magi] [Page 149] 'tis as Pareus reports a Persian word im­portingMagi apud Per­sic [...]s viri [...]runt primariae au­thoritatis obre­rum peritiam: qui consiliis re­gum praeessent, &c. Pareus. Cyprian Serm. de▪ Baptismo. Chrys. Hom. 6. in Matth. 2. men so expert in prudence as they were prompt and fit to be chief Counsellours unto Kings, and out of which for their wisdome-sake some were chosen to be Kings, and such were these wise men in the account of Cypri­an and severall others.

2. The Matter of their Knowledge was good. Not onely had they Hu­mane Learning in the sciences of the World, as in Mathematicall and Astro­nomicall Knowledg; so Calvin con­cludes they did excell; but also someApud Gentes erat liber Tris­megisti cui ti­tulus [...]. August. lib. 5. cap. 3. de Haeriesibus. Cyril. l. 8. contr. Jul. Clenn. Alex. l. 5. Strom. Learning in matters Divine, endowed with some Metaphysicall and Theologi­call Knowledg as relating to God and Christ his Sonne to come into the World. Wise men among the Gentiles had some such knowledge as concerned Christ; So Cyrill and severall assert.

3. The meanes of their knowledg as to this part of principles appertaining to [...]. Vide August. de Doct. Chr. l. 2. c. 28. & de civit. Dei. l. 8. c. 11 de cognit. verae vitae, c. 37. God and Christ his Sonne to be sent into the World. They might acquire much by their industrious reading, and dili­gent studying such helps as they had of ancient Prophesies, as Plato did by the [Page 150] Books of Moses, or God might inspire this, irradiating their minds with such divine Beames, as Balaam that Gentile Prophet, God made him see much con­cerning Christ, Numb. 14.

2. Concerning the voyage which these wise men made (manifesting some knowledg of Christ they had) as may more appeare if we ponder,

  • The reach of it,
  • The rise to it, &
  • The reason for it.

1. The reach of their voyage or the extent of their journey, it was from the Eastern parts as Persia, to the land of Judaea, and therein to Jerusalem theIter unius anni inter deeemdi­ebus perege­runt, puer ad quem propera­verunt potuit e­os in tam bre­vitem poris spa­tio ad se addu­cere, ver. 2. August. Metropolis thereof: Wise men came from the East to Jerusalem, Ver. 1. How long a Way this was, and yet in how short a space they dispatched it, let others report.

2. The rise to their voyage or what first set them forth, was the sight of a Starre. We have seen his Starre in the East, Ver. 2. [His Starre▪] A starre made by him, sayes Fulgentius, or a starre that did point to him. Chrysostom reports, it appeared in the likenesse of a [Page 151] little Child leading them to look afterPuer natus no­vam stellam fabricavit. Fulgent. Serm. de Epip. Chry­sost. hom. 2. in Mat. 2. Agente hoc [...]ine dubio in eorum cordi­bus non esset ob­scurum quod oculis erat o­stensum. Leo. Serm. de Epip. Christ the Babe born. To this likely was another light added by the Holy Ghost in their Hearts.

3. The Reason for the voyage or cause why they undertooke such a jour­ney was to worship Christ, And we are come to worship Him, Ver. 2. Inter­preters determine they meant not so much a civill-Worship to Christ as an Earthly-King but rather a religious Worship to Christ as a Heavenly God.

3, The Homage they after actuallyNon civili tan­tum reverentia sed religiosà prorsus adora­tione eos se an te Christum prostravisse. Pa­reus i [...] locum. did to Christ does evidence so much. When they came to Bethlehem and found the Babe borne, they fell down and worshiped him; presenting Gifts, gold, frankincence and myrrhe, ver. 11. If we look into their worship we may see,

  • The manner expressed, &
  • The matter presented.
    Puerum quem viderunt homi­nem, agnove­runt redempto­rem & quem dixerunt regem Iudaeorum erat creator Angelo­rum, &c. Fulgent. Serm. de Epip ha [...]

1. The manner after which they wor­shiped Christ is expressed to be by Pro­stration or falling down upon their faces, they fell down and worshiped him. Evi­dencing as Authors observe their low apprehensions of themselves and their high estimations of Christ as the Creator [Page 152] of Angels, &c.

2. The matter with which they pre­sented Christ in this worship was Gold, frankincense, and myrrhe. Manifesting they more minded him as an Eternall God, then as a mortall man. As a man subject to mortality they only offered, myrrhe. As God to go­vernAdorant corpo­ribus, honorant muneribus, v [...] ­nerantur offici­is, oculis homi­nem vident & Deum obsequiis confitentur. August. Serm. 1. in Epiph. Heaven and Earth, they offered two things for one, viz. Gold and Fran­kincense: Thus giving a cleere evi­dence, as of Condition, so of their own conversion; who are therefore called, The first fruits of the Gentiles, or the first born children of Christ.

These were the subjects or persons to whom God appeared in a Dreame. And they being warned of God in a Dreame.

2. The Substance or the matter the Dreame contained. It was to forbid their going back from Bethlehem to He­rod Cum Herodes dolum arte sua ita instruxisset ut Magi nihil mali suspica­rentur, sed secu­re illa nocte dormirent redi­turi ad praesen­tissimum peri­culum. the King at Jerusalem, That they should not return to Herod. Herod had appointed their return to him, and they had intended their return to Herod. Yea, as Chemnitius noteth, that very night before their intended return, when they were secure in their sleep, not sus­pecting [Page 153] any perill on Herods part, God brought in this prohibitting Dreame to draw them back. To Herod they must nor return, suppose for a threefold cause,

  • His Jelousie,
  • His Hypocrisie,
  • His Cruelty.

1. Herod was full of Jelousie: He had many misgiving thoughts upon the wise mens first enquiry, saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews. When Herod heard these words he was troubled. O how suspicious and solicitous he was, lest this enquired for King should un-KingNon ita corona caput circundat sicut ani­mam solicitudo. Chrysost. Hom. 66. ad populum Antio. him. 'Tis with Kings common (saies Chrysostom) for cares to sit more close to their Hearts, then their crownes to their Heads. But especially if by any ill course they have come to their crownes (as was the case of Herod) this encreases their cares and feares. This filled Herods heart with disturbing doubts and troublesome thoughts. Now seeing he was so troubled at the wise mens question; God will not have them to goe back to bring him a positive re­port.

[Page 154]2. Herod was full of Hypocrisie. Hy­pocrisieQuia hypocritae boni videri vo­lunt sed non esse & mali esse vo­lunt sed non ap­parere. Bernar. Serm. 66. in Cantic. is an evil most abhorred of God. Because Hypocrites (saies Bernard) they will be bad, yet will not seem to be so, they will not be good, yet so they will seem to be. Thus this Hypocrite Herod, he was false and perfidious yet would not appear to be so. He was not pious or religious, yet would pretend thereunto. He privily calls the wise men. Sent them to Bethlehem, saying, Search forth the young Child, and having found him bring me word, I may come, and worship him also. But God would not have them to carry him the truth, who sent them out of meer Deceit.

3. Herod was full of Cruelty, A manJosephus An­tiq. 426. Ma­crobius Satur­nal. lib. 2. ca. 4. of blood, a man who had imbrued his hands in the blood of his neer Relati­ons. Historians report how he had killed Hi [...]canus▪ Nicanor, his Brothers, murdered Mariamne his Wife, slain Alexander, Aristobulus and others of his own sonnes; which made Augustus Cae­sar tauntingly to say, 'Tis better to be Melius est esse Herodis por­cum quam pue­rum. Ba [...]onl­us. Herods swine then his Sonne. Who would not such a cruell man have mis­chiefed that came crosse in his way? The [Page 155] wise men had they come back and decla­red the certainty of Christs birth at Beth­lehem. De saevitia Herodis Lege Eusebi. lib. cap. 9. & Ni­ceph. l. 1. e. 14. Such an unpleasing message might have made immediate mischiefs. Because God would not thus expose in­nocent persons, he came by night in a Dreame and admonished these men, to Herod by no meanes to return. They were warned of God in a Dreame they should not return to Herod.

3. Their Receit of the Dreame is considerable according as severall Inter­preters translate the words, Being war­ned of God in a Dreame. As God gave the warning: so they took the warning, What God revealed they beleeved, the Author of the Dreame they did not sus­pect, the matter of the Dreame they did not reject; what God said, they assented to it, receiving of it,

  • As an Oracle,
  • As an Order,
  • As an answer, &
  • As an Evidence.

1. They received it as a Divine Ora­cle. Oraculo divino instructi. So E­rasmus reads it. But some of our late Writers dislike the phrase, and would [Page 156] not have the word (Oracle) used, be­cause so commonly abused by the An­tient Ethnicks, it becomes not Chri­stians.

2. They received it as an Order, as an expresse mandate or positive com­mand to guide their course and require their care. Arcana Declaratione jussi. [...], &c. Just. ad Triphon. [...]. So Beza renders the words of a Greek Authour. This Dreame they observed as Gods secret charge.

3. They received it as a Divine an­swer. Responso accepto in somnis, saies Aquinas, and Chemnitius well noteth that the Greek word is so deducted as doth aptly signifie an answer. Now an answer does prae-suppose a desire. The desire that might occasion to these men this answer from God in a Dreame, might proceed,

  • Either from their Saviour,
  • Or from Themselves.

1. From Christ their Saviour some desire might possibly passe. He who was a little Babe on Earth was also the Sonne of God in Heaven, who might pre­sent to his Father such a desire as con­cerned the safety of his servants, that [Page 257] they might not suffer for his sake, but that they who came so farre to serve him might be preserved from Herod, thereupon this Dreame they might re­ceive, as an answer to such a desire.

2. From themselves might such a desire proceed. Indeed there is no prayer on these mens part expressed;Sicut moses taci­tus clamabat, sic isti pio af [...]ectu interrogabant, quid divina ju­beret voluntas, Hieron. in Lo­cum. Tom. 9. Aquin. [...] But as Jerom observes of Moses, that though he was silent, yet he is said to pray, Exod. 14. 15. viz. In the se­crets of his Heart: So in the secret de­sires of their hearts might these men present a prayer to God for guidance, and to their prayer made when awake they received an answer in sleep.

4. They received this Dreame as a Divine evidence, testifying to them what they were not aware of; Divinitus ad­moniti in somnio, saies Piscator; God did in a Dreame admonish them of mat­ters not before manifest;

  • As Herods ill meaning against them,
  • And Gods good meaning towards them,

They minded this monitory Dream, as intimating man meant them mischief but God meant them mercy: They en­tertained the tidings hereof as a token [Page 258] of Herods ill intentions against them, but Gods good intendments towards them: They were warned of God in a Dreame, they should not return to Herod.

4. The effects or what followed upon this Dreame, in generall set down, They departed into their own countrey another way. To what was revealed in their sleep they yeelded ready obedience, when awake, all objections laid aside. They desputed not the precept of Herod to engage their return or the power of Christ to defend them from harm. They might have reasoned (saies Chrysostom) If the Babe be great, what need such a Si magnus est puer hic, quae ne­cessitas fugae & occultae recessio­nis, hoc est ver [...] fidei non quae­rere causas eo­rum quae praeci­piuntur. Chrys. Hom. 8. in Math. [...]light? But God in a Dream had decla­red his will, and obey they would. To Herod they would not go, but to their Countrey away they went. They departed to their Countrey another way.

The consequences hereof are conside­rable as further effects of this Heavenly Dream referring to foure several Heads.

  • To Herod,
  • To Christ,
  • To themselves, &
  • To other men.

1. Herods hand was hereby restrain­ed [Page 259] and his heart revealed; his bloody purposes were broken and brought to light. What ever he said, his Secret de­sign was, saevire non servire, to worry not to worship that innocent Lamb. And as commonly 'tis with Tyrants when their craft takes not place, their cruelty appeares. Thus Herod (Gods Dream diverting the wise men) his poli­cy failed, and then in a rage he fell upon the innocent Infants, slaughtering all toIdeo misit & interfecit omnes parvulos ut u­num inveniret in omnibus. Chryso. Hom. 2. in Mat. 2. find out one, as Chrysostom observes up­on ver. 16.

2. Christ was hereby preserved, Babe and Mother delivered. This Dreame to the wise men for their re­moval made way for another to Joseph; Christus enim totam causam nostrae salutis [...]c­ciderat si separ­vulum permi­sisset occidi. The Lord appeared to Joseph in a Dreame saying, arise, take the young Child and his Mother and flee into Egypt. Chryso­stome marketh the order of the words; 'tis not take the Mother and her Childe; but take the Child and his Mother, there­by shewing the chief danger was upon the Child. But as a good Author hath it, lest in this fall of the Child mans salva­tion should sink, God by Dreames pre­serves him.

[Page 260]3. The wise men much advantag­ed themselves by observing this Dreame,

  • Preventing their evill, &
  • Promoting their good.

1. Evills they prevented both of sin­ning and suffering. Had they concealed Christ to Herod, or complyed with He­rod against Christ, so had they sinned. Had they dealt downright and revealed Christ to Herod as certainly born, this had brought suffering.

2. Good they promoted: In goingImmutatio vi [...] emendatio vitae, Euseb. Emisen. Hom. de Epiph. Ita Fulgentius Serm. de ▪Epi­phan. in fine. from Herod home, they went from the Devill to God. They betook them­selves to another way of life, leading to Heaven their own countrey as Christi­ans. So Eusebius and other Authors o­pen the words. They departed to their own Countrey another way.

4. By following this Dreame were differing effects to divers,

  • As Judgement to the Jews,
  • And Mercy to the Gentiles.

1. To the Jews was Judgement.Dicit autem per al [...]m viam reversi sunt in r [...]m suam, [...]ia in [...]idelitati [...] n [...]n e­ [...]m. God sent the wise men another way, not suffering them (saies Musculus) to carry any further message that might [Page 261] draw the Jews from their incredulity, who were so much troubled at the first tidings of Christs Nativity, ver. 3.

2. To the Gentiles was mercy by thisCum reversi fu­issent, manserunt egregie colentes Deum & publi­ce praedicantes Christum, mul­tos erudirunt. meanes. By the wise mens return to their countrey they came to hear of Christ, &c. Chrysostom concludes, that in their own Countrey they be­came publike Preachers of Christ, so as many by their Ministry were converted to the Christian Faith. Chemnitius concurrs with Chrysostom and is much of the same mind: So were manyMagi reversi sine dubio in­choat [...] agnitio­ne profecerunt & alios ad ea [...] addu [...]erunt. sweet mercies the sequells of that Ce­lestiall Dreame. They being warned of God in a Dreame that they should not re­turn unto Herod, they departed to their own Countrey another way. But to passe from his particular Dreame in the text, and to treate of Dreames more general­ly considered as being solidly good, are certainly given in of God. And as in the former evill Dreames we found the malice of the Devill, and the mystery of iniquity, so in these good Dreames drawn out, we may much manifest the mercy of God and the mystery of god­linesse. The following discourse of such [Page 262] Dreames will consist of a double part,

  • Explicatory, &
  • Applicatory.

The Explicatory part of these Dreames will referre to foure things;

  • The times they have been at,
    Permulti Phi­losophi nobiscum fatentur variis temporibus som­nia a Deo im­mitti & divi­nationem dari per insomnia, viz. Antipater, Iamblicus, De­mocritus, Cra­tippus Cleanthes Pythagoras, possidonius, Pla­to, socrates, Zeno. &c.
  • The wayes they have been in,
  • The persons they have been to, &
  • The reasons they have been for.

First, The times at which God hath graciously given many good Dreames.

  • Are more remote,
  • Or more immediate.

1. The times more remote when God in good Dreames gave out his mind,

  • As before the Prophets time,
  • And in the time of the Prophets.

1. Before the Prophets times God came in Dreames. I shall not hereVid. August. de civita. Dei. lib. ult. cap. ult. vincentius lib. 3. cap. 72. Lyra in psal. Nazian 2. orat. 47. in Julian. Aquin. 2da. 2a. Qu. 147. observe with some the severall succes­sive ages of the World, reporting the particular steps of times before the ex­presse Prophets were: Neither shall I dispute with others too curiously, the or­der, place and preheminence of the Pro­phets, who was first and chief. Moses is determined among the most. But be­fore the times of Moses or any of the [Page 263] Prophets in the old Testament or anyAnte legem la­tam visiones fu­erunt patribus & somniis e­docti fuerunt. [...] promulgations of the Law of God, God in Dreames declared his mind, as Calvin concludes.

2. In the times of the Prophets, God did by Dreames declare much of his mercifull minde to men. As by the Prophets, God spoke to the people, so by Dreames God spoke to the Pro­phets. If there be a Prophet among you, I would make my self known to him in a vision, and I will speake to him in a Dreame, Numb. 12. 6. To the anci­ent Prophets God made himself known by visions when they were awake, and spake by Dreames when they were a­sleep,Duplex commu­nicationis mo­dus quo Deus patefacit vigi­lantibus visio­nem, dormienti­bus Somnium. so Junius expounds the place. Isidorus in libro Etymolog, sets down seven severall wayes by which God spake in the Holy Prophets, expressing Dreames as a prime and principal man­ner in which God was wont to revealeAugust. Super Gen. ad Lite­ram. 1. per sen­sus exteriores, &c. 2. per spe­cies imaginari­as. 3. per spe­cies intelligibi­les. his will and to speak his mind; yea those two wayes of visions and Dreames, were the most usuall Modes after which God spake to the Patriarches and Prophets of old. And to this purpose that place of the Apostle is pertinent; God who in [Page 264] divers manners spake in times past unto the Fathers by the Prophets, Hebr. 1. 1. The Greek text hath two considerable words, [...]. The one signifying how God gave out his minde in divers measures, and the other in di­vers manners. As the measures were divers, God spake somtimes lesse and sometimes more of matters Divine; soDeus loqui pa­tribus in veteri Ecclesia per vi­siones vel in somnia; Ita A­retius in locum varia fuisse ge­nera quibus il­luminati pro­phetae scilicet per somnia, &c. Estius in locum. the manners were divers; sometimes God spake in one form and sometimes in another forme. The whole tide of Interpreters both Protestant and Popish upon that place so runne, as to report Dreames to be a frequent forme or mannner of Gods speaking in the text intended. Thus God spake [In times past to the Fathers] that is, To David, Moses, Abraham, after the flood, To Noah, Enoch, Adam before the flood, as Paraeus expounds it. Even to the beginning of the world this was one of Gods wayes. Thus God spake [by the Prophets] that is, the Prophets gave out when awake, what they re­ceived from God in their sleep. In sleep God revealed Divine truths to them which they taught to others in [Page 265] their wakeing times and seasons.

2. Observe seasons and times more immediate and neerer to us,

  • As in the Apostles times,
  • And since the times of the Apostles.

1. We find, in the Apostles times were Heavenly Dreames. May we not say that sometimes in Dreames God spake to the Apostles, when to them 'tis plain God appeared in visions. As the Apostle Peter, when God would have him go and preach the Gospell to the Gentiles for their conversion to the Christian Faith, he fell into a trance, and saw Heaven opened and a certain vessell descending, &c. Acts 10. 10, 11, &c. And when God would have the Apostle Paul to goe preach the Gos­pel to the Macedonian people, a visi­on appeared to Paul in the night. There stood a man of Macedonia and prayed him saying, come over to Macedonia and help us, Acts 16. 9. We may ima­gine 'twas a Dreame in his sleep it be­ing a vision in the night. Though vi­sions in the day, were when men were awake, yet visions in the night were ordinary in sleep. Thus Eliphaz. In [Page 266] thoughts from the visions of the night when deep sleep falleth on men, Job 4. 13. so Dan. 2. 19. To the same may suit that place of the Apostle, 2 Cor. 12. 1, 2. I will come to visions and re­velations In hoc raptu a­nima Pauli non erat a corpore separata, sed mens Pauli ita caelestia vidett ut esset a sensi­bus corporeis a­lienata. Aquin 22. Q. 175. Art. & 6. August. lib. de Gen. ad lit. cap. 3. & lib. depeccat Orig. cap. 23. of the Lord: Whether in the body I cannot tell, or whether out of the body I cannot tell, God knoweth. His soul was so set awork in sublime con­verses with God, his body was as it were laid by, it might lye asleep having little to do. His visions were not to the ocular part of his body, but to the in­tellectuall part of his mind. His bo­dily eyes might be shut, the eye of his understanding was open. Yea to his visions he adds revelations, which Theo­phylact and others distinguish. The re­sultConjungit Apo­lus visiones & revelationes quia quae vidit perfecte intel­lexit. Estius in Loc. Carthus. of all may be this: That as he saw by his understanding, so he did under­stand what he saw; his intellect was so acting, though his bodily senses were bound. So that Apostle in Patmos, when he received those celestiall revelations, the vision he had (as a learned writer observes) was Interna, Imaginaria & Intellectualis. His mind was in motion, his body lay as asleep, he is said to be in [Page 267] the spirit. Not supposing as if he wereNon quod esset absque corpore, sed quia nihil pe [...] corpus, vidit, audivit, sensit, &c. Haymo. wholly out of the body, but because by his body he saw nothing, heard nothing, felt nothing, in such a sence no deep sleep could make him more Bodyless then now he was, yet to his mind great mysteries were manifest, yea, to his Heart was Heaven open.

2. Since the Apostles God sometimes sent in Dreames of deep concernment as various and very good Authors evi­dence. Jerome affirmes that Philo Hyeronim. lib. de Viris illu­stribus. Judaeus a famous man that flourished in the Emperour Caligulas time, some 40 years since Christ, that he wrote five Books of Dreames immitted of God. And Cyprian who lived under the Em­perour Valerian about 260 yeares since Christ, reports, that in his time severall things were made known by Dreames, redounding much to the glory of God and the good of his Church. So Au­gustine who was found famous in Africa between 4 and 500 yeares since Christ, wrote much relating to Dreames Di­vine, and so it might be easily drawn down. Visions that use to be co-tem­porary with Dreames have been in these [Page 268] latter times. Inlarge I might easily out of Ecclesiasticall History, take on­ly one instance. At a time there was in Antioch such a terrible earthquake as many houses fell flat, the people pos­sessed with fear forsook the City, and with-drawing from their dwellings, one had a vision, that he saw a man coming to him, who bade him write upon every house, Christ is with us, stay here; Christus nobis­cum, hic ma­nete. which accordingly upon houses standing was written and so were pre­served.

Object. God we grant in former times spoke by visions and Dreames, but in these last dayes he speaks by his Sonne, Heb. 1.

Answ. As in former times when God spoke by Dreames and Visions, God then spoke also by his Sonne, though not so apparently: so in these last dayes when God speaks by his Sonne, he may also speak by visions and Dreams, though not so frequently. By the preaching of the Gospel is Gods usuall speech and ordinary course, requiring mens chiefest care; yet from God may come Dreames in the latter times 'Tis a [Page 269] promise first reported by the Prophet Joel, 2. 28. and after repeated in the Acts of the Apostles, Chap. 2. ver. 17. That in the last dayes young men should see visions, and old men should dreame Dreames. A sound Expositor upon the place observes, That to young Hic somnia tri­buuntur senibus quia puriores sunt affectibus. Juvenum in­somnia ex af­fectibus pluri­ma trahunt ut exodi [...] amore i­ra humorum re­dundantia: qui­bus affectibus senes minus sunt subjecti vi­siones quia judi­cio & sensuum vigore maxime pollent, &c. Aretius. men who may be more quick and cleare in their apprehensions 'tis attributed, they shall see visions: yet though they are named others are not denyed: And to old men who may be more calm and clean in their affections, 'tis appropriate, They shall dream Dreames. Yet though they are expressed other men are not excluded. Great Articles of Faith concerning Christ incarnate have been signified by Dreames. To Joseph, Mat. 1. 20, 21. was Christ in the truth of his two Natures by a Dreame clearly declared; The Lord appeared to him in a Dreame saying, Joseph thou sonne of David, fear not to take to thee Mary thy wife, for shee shall bring forth a Sonne: that opened his humane Nature. Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his People from their sinnes: that evi­denced Christs divine Nature; for he that [Page 270] saveth from sin must be God as well as Man. Let this suffice for the times whereat God hath given out Dreames.

Secondly. See we the Wayes of God in these secret works of sacred Dreames. Dreames, God hath sent into mens minds;

  • Some as with a vision, &
  • Some as with a voyce.

1. With visions representing some­things under similitudes as to the eye. Macrobius facit quinque somniorum spe­cies 1. [...], 2. [...] 3. [...], 4. [...], & 5. [...]. lib. 1. cap. 3. & cap. 41. de Somn. In this way was Pharaohs Dreames wherein God admonished him of seven yeares famine in Egypt. And Pharaoh said to Joseph, I saw in a Dreame and be­hold seven ears came up in one stalk full and good. And behold seven ears I saw come up after them withered and blasted, and these devoured the seven good eares. And I saw in a Dreame seven kine fat and well favoured; And I saw seven o­ther kine poore and leane that did eat up the fat, Gen. 41. 17, 18, 19, 20, verses.

2. With a voice, God not represent­ing any thing as visible to the eye, but onely speaking so, as somewhat seems audible to the eare. This was Gods [Page 271] way in Abimelechs Dreames about the businesse of Sarah. God came to Abime­lech in a Dreame by night and said unto him, behold thou art a dead man, Gen. 20. 3. And God said unto him in a Dreame, yea, I know thou didst this in the integrity of thy heart, ver. 6. God did not herein use any similitudes.

Again God in the way of Dreames hath gone with steps;

  • More swift, or
  • More slow.

The making of Dreames lyeth in the moving of thoughts. Now thoughts, their motions are with expeditions. Luther when he would set out the Agi­lity of the bodies of Saints after the re­surrection, saies, They shall move as swift in the Heavens, as thoughts in the heart. Yet the hearts and minds of some men in these notions are more flow, dull and heavy then others. And so Gods workings upon all are not with the same celerity, because they follow not fully the activity of the Agent, butQuodlibet reci­pitur ad modum recipientis. according as is the capacity and recepti­bility of the Subject. God in works of mercy, nescit tarda molimina. He [Page 272] would passe with all speed; but mens hearts move heavy, and hence thoughts in some both awake and asleep are more slow. In all Dreames God does not keep the same space; nor does he passe so sudden with some as with o­thers, but much varieth his goings, so that some herein have found him easier to follow and others harder to trace.

Again, God in this way and work of holy Dreames,

  • Hath made use of Instruments,
  • Or hath done all himself.

1. Instruments God hath sometimes made use of, transmitting Dreames in­to mens minds by the ministery of Angels. When Herod was dead, behold an Angell of the Lord appeared in a Dreame to Joseph in Egypt, saying, arise, Mat. 2. 20. God sends Angels from Heaven in the night and sets them a­bout mens Beds when asleep; as to prevent Satan in Dreames that be bad, so to convey himself in Dreames very good. By bad Dreames would Devils break in, but are beat off by Angels. An Hystorian tells, that when Gainas sent a great multitude in the night to [Page 273] burn the Emperours Palace at Constan­tinople: Socrat. lib. 6. cap. 6. a multitude of Angels met them in the forme of armed men, which forced them with feare to flye back. When Satan by night with a sinfull fire brought from Hell would set mens souls on a flame; Angels bring a blessed fire from Heaven, that burns and heats mens hearts in holy Dreames. As God hath sent Angels to watch over some asleep, for their protection: so to work in some asleep, for their instruction. God hath appointed his Angels to carry hisPsal. 34. 7. Heb. 1. 14. mind down to some on earth, while their bodies have been asleep in their beds: as he hath imployed his Angels Luk. 16. 22, 23. to carry the soules of some up into Hea­ven, when their bodies have fallen asleep by death.

2. Somtimes God hath thus wrought himself alone, no Angell administring.Nullus de jani­toribus respondit quia omnes te- [...] nuerat somnus licet pueri tui Domine dormi­ant, tu tamen non dermis qui custodis Israel August. in Ser. de tempore. Austin observes upon that Parable of our Saviour, Luk. 11. Which of you shall go to his friend when it's midnight saying, send me three loaves. He from within shall answer, Trouble me not, the doore is shut, my Children in bed, I cannot rise; Yet because of his importunity [Page 274] he will arise and give him. Here we see (saith he) how, when the whole family was asleep, yet the master of the house was awake and at midnight gave out bread to his friend, &c. Thus when to men-ward Angels are as if they were a­sleep, yet towards them God is awake and in the night-times gives out good Dreames, as severall Scriptures be­side the text testifie.

Thirdly, The persons unto whom good Dreames God hath given, viz,

  • Both Sanctified,
  • And Sinfull.

1. Into men sanctified God hath sent such Dreames, as to Samuel when but a child about the businesse of Eli, 1 Sam. 3. So to Solomon about the concernments of his Kingdome, 1 Kin. 3. O what a comfortable conference passed betwixt God and him in a Dreame▪ The Lord appeared to Solomon in a Dreame by night, saying, aske what I shall give thee, and Solomon said, give thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy peo­ple and to discern betwixt good and bad. And the speech pleased the Lord, and God said to Solomon, behold I have given [Page 275] thee a wise and understanding heart. And Solomon awoke and behold it was a Dreame, ver. 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, &c. And indeed holy and good men are for such Dreames most meet,

  • Having fit matter for them, &
  • Being free movers in them.

1. Matter fit for such Dreames; God finds in holy hearts the habits of Hea­venly graces, such supernaturall prin­ciples disposing them to receive further impressions from God. We may see in our selves, when our hearts are well inclined, how quickly do we close with [...], &c. Nazianz. any good motion, how readily do we re­ceive, sleeping or waking, any gracious suggestion? When a good fire is found in our wood, the breath of the blessed spirit soon blows up such flames even by night in good Dreames. A graci­ous heart is a fit stock for such graftings; God takes pleasure to put in such Cien­ces with his own hand from Heaven. A good soul is a fit soyle for such seed.

2. The minds of sanctified men move freely so as actually to concurre with what comes from God. In sleep [Page 276] their bodily senses are bound, but theirChristianus, cum ocul [...]s dormit, corde vigilat. Cypri. de ora­ti. Domini. graces are free; so farre as they are found flesh, they are sleepie; but so farre as they are spirit, they are vigilant and wakefull. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weake, Mat. 26. 41. I sleep, but my heart waketh, saies the Church, Cant. 5. 2. Her Heart being awake she soone heard his knock, Mat. 25. We find, while the Bridegroome stayed the virgins slumbered and slept, the wise Vid. Salmeron. Tract. Octa. de par. de­cem Virg. slumbered, and the foolish slept, say some; but concede they all slept, yet the wise were in part awake, whence they quickly heard the cry at midnight. Behold the Bridegroome cometh. Then they being ready went in with him, ver.Si dormituri su­mus quomodo vigilamus eti­am cum [...]orpore dormimus corde vigilamus. Aug. de. verb. Do. Ser. 22. 10. Let the Lord come at midnight, good men are ready to meet his mo­tions.

2. Bad men have had Dreames from God, as Pharaoh and Nebuchadnezzar named are notable instances, yet such Dreames

  • God hath more rarely immitted, &
  • They have more hardly admitted.

1. Good Dreames into bad men brought seldome. Amongst good men [Page 277] such matters have been found more frequent. Joseph Jacobs sonne had so many Dreames sent in of God, above his brethren-that they scoffingly called him the captain Dreamer, Gen. 37. 19. [...]. Somniorum Architectus. Sinfull men they do so oft resist good motions, when they are awake, that God seldome visits them, when they are a­sleep. They are so much against God in the day, that God is but little with them in the night

2. Dreames good, men bad doSomnium illud oblatum uxori Pilati non a Di­abolo immissum fuisse tanquam volente mortem Christi impedire per quem ipse conterendus es­set, sed a bono Angelo revocau­te Pilatum ab injusta condem­natione iusti ho­minis. Ambros. in Lucam. hardly embrace. sinfull souls have been afflicted when such were injected, therein no way active but passive, as appears in Pilates wives Dreame, which Dreame was not of the Devill to hin­der Christs death (as some have assert­ed) considering himself should be thereby destroyed, but the Dreame was Divine to withdraw Pilate from his sentence, or to aggravate his sin; O saies shee, Have thou nothing to do a­gainst that just man; for I have suffered many things in a Dream, because of him! In such Dreames sinfull men are meer­ly passive, when others are active; Dreams that have entered into gratious [Page 278] hearts with pleasure and delight, have come into carnall hearts with trouble and pain; they have taken such im­pressions, as oppressions.

Now lastly, The reasons for which good Dreames have been given in of God,

  • Why to naturall and sinfull men,
    Solet Deus som­nia immittere viris piis, ut in Scripturis patet, & aliquando impiis ut somni­um Pharaonis probat Zanch. tractat. De Di­vinat. p. in Som.
  • Why to regenerate and sanctified men.

First, Into the minds of sinfull men God hath sent in such Dreames,

  • In relation unto others, &
  • In relation unto themselves.

1. 'Tis certain God hath sometimes come unto bad men by Dreames for o­thers sakes,

  • To restrain them from doing evill a­gainst others,
  • To encline them towards others to do them good.

When Laban pursued Jacob, and pur­posed at least to plunder him of all he had, Gen. 31. 24. God came to Laban the Syrian by night in a Dreame saying, Take heed thou speak not to Jacob either good or evill. This so bound up La­ban that when he overtook Jacob, he did him no hurt, but shewed kindnesse [Page 279] to him, made a covenant of peace with him, and departed from him▪ blessing him and his, ver. 55. 'Tis written of Alexander (the Jewes having denied himJosephus l. 11. August de civ. Dei, lib. 8. some help) he was so enraged against them, that he resolved to ruine them, and accordingly with his conquering Army going against Jerusalem, Jad­dus the High Priest hearing thereof, put on his Priestly attire, met him in the way, whom when Alexander saw he fell off his Horse, and offered him peace, telling his Nobles, that God in a Dreame had shewe'd him the same Man so attired the Night before, and so he departed with some expressions of bravery and bounty in obedience to that vision.

2. 'Tis sure God hath also come to Men bad, by Dreames for their own sakes,

  • To prevent their sinnesull evil, &
  • To promote their saving good.

When Abimelech King of Gerar had sent and took Sarah, (who was re­ported to him to be Abrahams sister) into his house, God admonished him by Night in a Dreame to forbear to [Page 280] take her to wife, and to restore her unto Abraham, whose wife she was, Gen. 20. 2, 3, 6, 7. Thus did the King escape that sad sinne of Adultery; And thus hath God sought the salva­tionOpus providen­tiae Dei, non ut solveretur Christus, sed ut servaretur uxor. of the soules of some. That Dream which Pilate's wife had, the intent of it was not to deliver Christ from the death of the Cross, for that was accord­ing to the determinate Counsell of God, but as Theophlyact conceives, it was to save the womans soul from everlasting death: not so much for the clearing of Christ, while he was at the barre, as for the converting of the woman, whose case was bad.

Secondly, Into the minds of sancti­fied Men, God hath sent in Dreames,

  • In reference unto others, &
  • In reference unto themselves.

God into good Men hath given Dreames for others advantage, there­by,

As to admonish others of evil where of they were in danger,

So to establish others in good where­in they did waver.

[Page 281] God hath caused Dreames in the mindes of his Sants, that they might warn others of danger. 'Tis report­ed of Beza, that in the Night having dreamt that Geneva was sadly surpriz­ed, he pressed the Governours in the morning immediately to search, where­upon a desperate plot against the place was discovered, the perill prevented and the people preserved. Yea and also,

1. God hath brought Dreames into the mindes of his Saints, that they might help others in doubts. Mr Phil­pot Book of Mar­tyrs, Vol. 3. pag. 606. col. 2. Such as scru­ple this point, read that Let­ter. the Martyr having over night received a Letter from his fellow-Pri­soner, wherein he desires his Judge­ment concerning the baptisme of In­fants, made this return; Before (says he in his Letter back) I shew you, what for it I have learned from Gods holy Word, and the practice of the purest Churches, I cannot but declare, how the same Night musing upon your Letter I fell asleep, and had such a Vision and Dreame, (which he relates and concludes) This Dreame I take to be the working of Gods Spirit, that I might the better content [Page 282] your request, as he wrought in Peter to satisfie Cornelius, Acts 5. 10.

2. God hath made good Men to receive such Dreames for their own advantage;

  • As to prepare them for evil which they were to sustain.
  • So to assure them of Good which they were to obtain.

1. God by Dreames hath signified to his Saints what afflictions they should suffer, that so they might the better prepare. History reports of Policarpus, who in Smyrna suffered martyrdomeEusebius lib. 4. cap. 13. under Antonius the Emperour about a hundred seventy yeares after Christ, that three dayes before he fell into his enemies hands, sleeping upon his bed, he dreamt, that the bolster whereon his head lay, was all on a flame, and the other bed-cloaths burning about him; whereupon when he awoke, he told his friends, God had declared that he must be burnt quick for Christ (for which he much fitted himself) and so it soon fell out.

2. God by Dreames hath signified [Page 283] to his Saints, what mercies they should receive, that so he might strengthen their faith and also quicken their obedience. Thus Jacob in his journey lying down upon a stone to sleep, Gen. 28. 11, 12, 13. He Dreamed and behold a ladder set upon the earth and the top reached up to Heaven, and behold the Angells of God ascending and descending on it. And behold the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abra­ham thy Father and the God of Isaac, the land whereon thou lyest, to thee will I give it and to thy seed. And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be bles­sed. Behold I am with thee and will keep thee in all places, whither thou goest, and will bring thee again to this land, and will not leave thee, till I have done what I have said.

The Application to our selves con­cerning such Dreames now follow;

This referres to a two-fold case,

  • In case we have them not, &
  • In case we have them.

Be we without these Dreams? then let us observe,

  • [Page 284]The grounds why we should desire them, &
  • The meanes how we may procure them.

Such Dreames from God are to be desired.

  • Because of the excellency that is in them, &
  • Because of the commodity that is by them.

These Dreames are in themselves excellent: because through them

  • The Soule in sleeping-time is highly Imployed, &
  • Sleeping-time by the soul is rarely
    Corpore dormi­ente anima in somnis somnian­do agit. Hypo. de insomniis.

1. The imployment of Mens soules in such Dreames is high and holy. Mans soul we must observe, it sleeps not as the body does, for, as it lives when the body dyes: so it wakes when the body sleeps: 'Tis an Argument some bring to prove the Immortality of the soul,Ne in somnium quidem anima cum corpore quo­modo inveritatē mortis cadet, uqae inimaginem ejus ruit. Tert. de resur. carnis. that it does not die, as the body does, because it is not subject so much, as to the similitude or shadow of death; viz. sleep, as the body is; Now if not the soul of a man, much less does the soul [Page 285] of a Saint sleep: If the rationall soul be waking & working, much more does the regenerate soul wake and worke, when the body is bound by sleep: And as the soul of a sinnefull Man is by bad Dreames set a worke in an abominable and wicked way: so the sanctifyed soul is in good Dreames set a work after an admirable and worthy way: we may say of the soul sanctifyed as 'tis said of the goodCorpore in lectu­lo cubante ac velut in morte quiescente ipsa anima corporis naturam transi­lit, &c. Athan. Cont. Gent. house-wife, Prov. 31. 18. She perceives her merchandise is good and her candle goes not out by Night, she seeks wooll and flax and works willingly with her hands, she is like the Merchants ships, she bringeth her food from afarre, she riseth also while it is Night, and makes ready meat for her houshold, and prepares a portion for her Maidens, &c. As while the drowzie Disciples were fast asleep, our dear Sa­viour himself was hard at holy Prayer, fixed upon his Fathers will and work: so a Saint of God whilst his body lies a­sleep on bed, his soul in a sweet Dreame is bent about blessed business, as if in prayer ardent, in hearing diligent, in Christian conference earnest, as if at the Lords Table instant, where he thinks [Page 286] he sees Gods Minister giving, precious people receiving, yea it seemes, as if he saw the Lord Christ thereat sitting, and thereupon the Spikenard smelling, Cant. 1. 12. Oh the rare workings of the soul at such a time, how admirably and accep­tably did the soul of Solomon work in the time of a Dreame? what an excel­lent prayer did he in the thoughts of his heart, make? 1 King. 3. 6, 7, 8, 9.

2. The Improvement of mens time in such Dreames is rare and precious. 'Tis a blessed thing for men to make the best of time, especially to raise that time towards their eternall good which others idly sleep away. We know a very vast part of our time runnes out by night and is spent in sleep, of which we must Deorum im­mortalium eti­am noctes sunt, Hesiodus. give an account, because not onely the day, but the night is Gods. The day (saies David to God) is thine, the night also is thine, Psal. 74. 16. Luther hath some such like saying. Whe­ther Sive nox est sive dies est, Dei sunt. Qui vigi­lat, Domino vi­gilat. Qui dor­mit, Domino dor­mit. Luther. Ex tomo. 3. In Genesim. the time be night or day, it is of God, and ought to be to God. He that waketh must wake to God, and he that sleepeth must sleep to God. Now to God he surely sleeps, that thus surely Dreames. [Page 287] And as these meet times for man had never been: So time would not continue in its order; but day and night would be confounded, were it not for God. As God in the Creation did ordain day and night to be separate one from another, and successive one after ano­ther, Gen. 1. 5, 6. So God by a Co­venant keeps them asunder, to come in their season, Jer. 33. 20. 'Tis Gods mercy, day and night does not mingle together, as to marre their order. As God is worthy of praise, that preserves the night time: so it's praise-worthyNon oportet eos qui animam vi­gilantem intus habent tota nocte dormire, &c. Clem. Alex. Paedag. l. 2. c. 9. in man to improve the time of the night. Yea, that part of the night wherein he sleeps, so as when his body is at rest, his soule is at worke: when his body lies still, his soul is ascending Jacobs ladder. This is a marvellous mystery to the most of men.

2. Such Dreames are unto good men comodious,

  • Thereby the grace of God is evidently discerned, &
  • Thereby the God of grace is comforta­bly enjoyed.

1. Through these a cleare discovery [Page 288] is made of the grace of God. Physicians find out the principall and most predo­minant humours in the body by Dreames. Divines determine the ma­ster, most prevailing and best beloved sinne in a man, by his Dreames. And so it may be surely seen and safely said, such and such graces are present and po­tent in man by the spirituall motions of his minde in Dreames. God by Dreames hath unloosed the doubts and enlightned the darknesse of divers, brought them to the knowledge of what they did not understand. One hearing the praise of Basil, desired much to know what kinde of man he was, whereupon a pillar of fire was presented in a Dreame (saies my Author) with this motto, Talis est Basilius, such a one is Basil, a burning flame for God. Some of Gods Saints desirous to know the beauties of holinesse and to behold the lustre of grace, the Spirit of the Lord hath given that light in Dreames, that they have learned, how illustrious and lovely, grace and holinesse in their hearts hath been. Augustin tells of one Eulogi­us August. de cu­ra pro mortuis, cap. 10. a Rhetorician in Carthage, who meet­ing [Page 289] with an obscure place in Cicero's Rhetoricks which he was next day to read to his Scholats; being at night troubled he could not understand it, fell asleep and by a Dream before morning, the dark place was made plaine. (How God hath cleared intricate▪ Scriptures this way to some, I shall forbeare to men­tion:) And as obscure places in books, so obscure graces in hearts, have been admirably opened unto men in their Dreams, when they have been troubled with knotty objections, they have thus received resolutions; what was cloudy in the day hath been cleared in the night: Graces in the heart, like starresStellae in die la­tent, in nocte lu­cent. Bernard. in cam. in the heavens, have shined in the night that were not seen in the day. One writing of the twelve stones in Aarons garment, saies of the Rubic▪ that it is aEpiphanius de 12. Gem. precious stone soonest seen and best found out in the night, by a sparkling light it self therein casteth. Thus in the night may a man have experience of grace and the spirituall workings thereof that did not so appeare in the day.

2. In Dreames a close communion [Page 290] may be held with God; a man may have refreshing fellowship with Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Many a good man, as in Dreames he hath had close combatings with Satan, his bed hath been as a field, wherein many a brave battle hath been fought and victory got gallantly, hath his soul beat off the De­vill, when his body lay bound by sleep: So in Dreames he hath had close con­versings with God, his Bed hath been as a Bethel, a place wherein God hath been present, and a place wherein he hath made neer approaches to God and God to him, Gen. 38. 16, 17. And Jacob Malè cubans suavitèr dor­mit & foeliciter Somniat. awaked out of sleep saying, surely the Lord is in this place. This is none other but the house of God and this is the gate of Heaven. Why the place was the open field, where he had lien amongst the stones; ai but he had had such a Dreame, as put him into the very gate of Heaven, and placed him, as in the house of God. Hence a Saint may not onely say to God, as David, Psal. 139. 18. Lord, when I awake, I am still with thee, but Lord, when I sleep, I am still with thee! There may be somewhat more in that [Page 291] place of the Apostle, then we are aware of at present, 1 Thes. 5. 10. Christ di­ed for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him. If it relates to sleep before mentioned, the Apostle speaks of a double, viz.

A sleep of the Soul in security; Let not us sleep, as do others. ver. 6. &.

A sleep of the body for necessity; They that sleep, sleep in the night, ver. 7.

Now that in the 10. ver. cannot be meant of the Soul sleeping in sinfull security; For therein is no living with Christ if intended of the body in it's na­turall and necessary sleeping, then through holy Dreames a man lives with Christ. A godly man whether he wakes in the day, or sleeps in the night, by the thoughts of his mind he meets, Christ, remaines with Christ; ChristO Sancta anima s [...]la esto ut soli omnium serves teipsum quem ex omnibus tibi ele­gisti, an nescis te habere verecun­dum sponsum? Bernard. lib. medit. and he hath sweet intercourse together! O what sweet converse hath the Soule with it's Saviour in the solitudes of the night! If thou wouldst solace thy self (saies Bernard) with thy Saviour, mind much the most solitary times o [...]tire­ments! Oh chast and lovely Soul be [...] [Page 290] [...] [Page 291] [Page 292] thou alone; thy Heavenly husband, who will not croud into thee in the day, through the throng of worldly company, and earthly imployments, may yet give thee gracious visits in the night, when the curtaines are drawn, the doore lockt, and all the world shut out, then may he come, and finding thee alone there give thee his loves, Cant. 7. 11, 12. All men, saies an obscure Wri­ter, while they are awake, are togetherHeraclitus. in one common world, but when they sleep, each man goes into a single world by himself. A Saint of God in his sleep goes into a glorious world where he finds comfortable company, conver­ses with Angels, Apostles, Martyrs, and holy men. Thus God makes good that promise, Prov. 3. 24. When thou liest down thou shalt not be afraid. [That's not all] Yea thou shalt lye down and thy sleep shall be sweet; in sleep not onely free from what affrights, but filled with what refreshes. Thus the Prophet when he had Dreamt of the Churches happy estate; Upon this, saies he, I a­waked and beheld, and my sleep was sweet unto [...] Jerem. 31. 26. O how have the [...]forts of God, and the God of [Page 293] comforts in time of sleep been sweetly received! A Persian Monarch Dreaming that Themistoles the Athenian, a man of rare parts was revolted from the Greci­ans and come in to him, being transport­ed with joy, he broke out with a loud voice in his sleep, I have got Themisto­cles Habeo Themi­stoclem Atheni­ensem. Xerxes. the Athenian, He is mine, He is mine, wherewith he awaked, and so it was. Thus a poor Christian who having been for divers dayes in doubts and deep distresse for want of Christ, in whom are hid the treasures of wisdom and knowledg; the Lord at length hath come in a Dreame by night, which [...]th made his soul to sing & leap, saying; Christ my Redeemer is come, is come, I have him, I have him, which proves more then a Dream: Credibly have I heard it reported of a Christian man, that lived in Dublin in Ireland, who Dream­ing he heard the last trumpet sound, and that the world was at an end, with joy leaped out of his bed and runne out in­the streets, saying, My Christ is come, my Christ is come. This I can report of a precious Minister a little before his death, slumbering upon his bed in the [Page 294] night, and falling into Meditations of the Resurrection at the last day, when both body and soul should abide for e­ver in blisse, started up, and was ready to rise out of bed; being askt what he meant, answered, Let me go to the pul­pit and impart to the people the sweet comforts I have had in my soul this night! O that these things might quicken and cause us to seek such Dreames from God;

From God, that such Dreames may be procured, preparation for them is to be made,

  • First in the day, &
  • Secondly in the Night.

Whilest the day lasteth, if we woul [...] prepare for good Dreames, we must endevour,

  • To do much good, &
  • To do all good well.

1. Much good work we must en­deavourQuod fi dic do­minico mens no­stra in piis ex­ercitiis tota de­fixa esset, ea­dem inter dor­miendum recur­rerent Cart­wright in Ecclesias. Homili. in the day to do. A dreame comes through the multitude of businesse, saies Solomon, Eccles. 5. 3. He, that goes through a multitude of worldly businesse in the day, is apt to Dreame of worldly things in the night: and in the night he is apt to Dreame of [Page 295] things holy and good, who is busie about abundance of good in the day. There­fore my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, alwayes abounding in the worke of the Lord, 1 Cor. 15. 58.

2. All good work we must endea­vour to do well, if thereby we would make way for good Dreames to fol­low. We must set our selves in holy and religious duties,

To do them
  • With strong desires, &
    Mens humana quod optat. Cice­ro. de Divi­natione.
  • With great delights.
To do them
  • With hearts fired, &
  • With hearts fixed.

We ought to stirre up and put out our selves about holy service, so as to take pains thereat and pleasure there­in, with minds wholly bent thereupon, to make the managments of holy mat­ters our meat: My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work, John 4. 39. yea, to esteem the work of God, as Job did the word of God, more then our appointed food, chap. 23. 12. These day-duties to good Dreames are very dispositive; and when night is, then towards such Dreames there be duties prepara­tive.

  • [Page 296]Both at the entrance of the night,
  • And in the progresse of the night.

1. When Night is begun and we are to lye down in our beds, our businesse as introducting to Dreames divine, is, Prayer to God; Prayer, as it beats off the Devill that he cannot assault us with Dreames that are bad: So it brings on God graciously to visit us with Dreams that are good. As we must pray for good sleep in the night: So we must pray for good Dreames, in our sleep reading the Scripture. Hierom exhorted some godly women, to whom he wrote, to takeHiero, ad Eu­stach. de custod. Virg. the Bible to bed, and to hold it reading in their hands, till they bowed down their heads with sleep, so as their lips and the leaves met: 'Tis to good Dreames a great help. Instructing our families and speaking to them about us, of the great works and good word of God, which we are to relate when we lye down, Deut. 11. 18, 19. And the same, Prov. 6. 21, 22. All such means much conduce to Dreames that are good.

2. When night goes on and in our beds we are laid, to lift up our hearts un­to [Page 297] God in holy meditations. Com­mune with your own heart upon your bed and be still, Psal. 4. 4. The bed is not barely for body-sleeping, but for heart­communing and soul­searching, Psal. 77. 6. In the night (saies David) I communed with my own heart, and my spirit made diligent search. David took advantage of the night to looke more narrowly into his own heart; to sweep his house; In the night likewise to look up in a holy remembrance of God, I have remembred thy name O Lord in the night, Psal. 129. 55. In the intervals or spaces between sleep and sleep to have the heart with God, to set our thoughts well a work, when at times we wake; Thus David, Psa. 65. 6. Lord, I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate upon thee in the night watches; Thoughts good when awake bring good thoughts in our sleep. 'Tis a sweet thing to lye in the night and me­ditate upon the love of God and upon the Law of God. A young Scholar asking a Jewish Doctor if he might not have time to learn the Greek Tongue, he said, if he would do it neither by day [Page 298] nor by night, he might, because day and night, he was to meditate upon the law of God, Psal. 1. 2. And indeed such ex­tended meditations are a mighty means to promote good Dreames.

Have we at any time such sweet Dreams? Then our duty is,

  • To preserve them in our memories, &
  • To improve them in our practice.

1. In memory we must preserve them, not forget good Dreames. The Devill will endeavour to draw from us Dreames that are good. What the souldiers falsly said of the buried Body of Christ, Matth. 28. 13. His Disciples came by night and stole him a­way, while we slept; we may say safely of some blessed Dreames from Christ, Satan came by night and stole it away while we slept. Hence when we have been awake, we have been to seek; the matter hath been gone from us, as Nebuchadnezzer said of his Dreame, Dan. 2. 5. To maintaine the remem­brance of good Dreames is our du­ty, for which the best way is, when awake,

  • [Page 299]Much to reflect upon them our selves, &
  • Oft to repeat them unto others.

1. We our selves should debate the businesse in our minds, what Gods meaning should be; consult the secrets of God therein, and the good pleasure of God thereupon, that we may well understand Gods drift in our Dreames. What the understanding does most clear­ly discern, the memory does most firmly re­taine.

2. We should relate things to o­thers, and consult with Gods Saints hereupon. Thus to impart is to im­print; and the way to drive Dreames in, is so to draw them out. When we keepe things from others, we oft loose them our selves.

2. In our practice we must im­prove, what in our sleep we receive; So as may be,

  • Both for the praise of God,
  • And for the profit of our selves.

1. Hereupon we must put out our selves to give God the praise. Thus did David, I will blesse the Lord who hath given me counsell, my reines also instruct me in the night seasons, Psal. [Page 300] 16. 7. He thankfully shewed forth in the morning, what mercies he had met with in the night, It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, to shew forth thy loving kindnesse in the morning and thy faithfulnesse in the night, Psal. 92. 1, 2. So Solomon his sonne, 1 King. 3. 15. And Solomon awoke and behold it was a Dreame, and he came to Jerusa­lem and stood before the Lord and offered up burnt offerings and peace offerings, &c.

Now if we would blesse God for such Dreames,

  • We must esteem highly of them, &
  • We must rejoyce greatly in them.

Take a good Dreame as a great fa­vour from God. Then we heartily give God glory, when we highly value his mercy; We cannot but praise him if we prize his. Be glad when a good Dream hath been. O with what gladnesse did the Isralites gather up the Manna in the morning, that fell from Heaven about their Tents in the night! Exod. 16. With joy let us gather up the good Dreames God sent in the night. The most joyfull heart is the best thankfull heart.

[Page 301] Lastly, Let us improve such precious Dreames, especially for our personall profit,

  • To quicken our obedience in day­duties, &
  • To strengthen our expectance of day­mercies.

Hath God had good works in us, when asleep? Let us have good works for God, when awake. That good we Dreamt in the night, let us deed it in the day; draw it out in [...]acts to the utmost. Neither let us doubt, but he, who hath been good in the night, will be kind in the day! O saies David, The Lord will command his loving kindnesse in the day, in the night his song is with me, Psal. 42. 8. or [his song shall be Die praehet mihi bonitatem suam & ita me exhi­larat comtinuabit etiam noctu su­um erga me a­morem ut de eo laetari possim. Moller in lo­cum. with me] This saying of the Psalmist, Mollerus expounds, as a certain continu­ing of Gods comfortable kindnesse, in the night, being begunne in the day: So likewise an enlarging of Gods delight­full love in the day, having found some sweet entrance thereof in the Night. As we may argue from Gods day­kindnesse to his night-comforts: So upon the divine speculative comforts of [Page 302] the night, we may expect Gods accom­plished kindnesse in the day.

Indeed the Dreames of worldly men about worldly matters vanish and pe­rish, they do not find that comfort ful­filled in the day, they fancied in the night. See how the Prophet compar­eth some, Isa. 29. 6, 7. As when an hungry man Dreameth and behold he eat­eth, but he awaketh and his soule is empty; or when a thirsty man Dreameth, and be­hold he drinketh, but when he is awake, be­hold he is faint; This place of the Pro­phet, Calvin applies as to the Jews Salse autem propheta Judaeos somniare dicit quia suis deliti­is immersi vi­dent & senti­unt subito ven­turos hostes qui dormientibus terrorem incu­tiunt Calvin in locum. who were so drowned in security and carnall delights that they Dreamed of nothing but prosperity and peace; but by and by a bloody Enemy cometh and dashing all, in the dust leaves them deso­late.

They found no such reall matter to meet them as they fondly imagined. Diodate considers the place as to the Caldeans, who coming against Jerusalem Dreamed of great satisfactions, but the more they prospered in their successe, the lesse they were satisfied in their pur­suits; All signifies, men may Dreame [Page 303] of those earthly honours, treasures, pleasures, which yet they never pos­sesse, whereas spirituall mercies that good men imagine in their sleep, God may realize and make good when awake. Let a gracious man Dreame of the matters of God, converses with Christ, priviledges of the Gospel after which his Soul pants with a holy hunger and heavenly thirst; and afterward when awake, God gives him that really, which he did suppose in his sleep. And after the Saints manner should we deale with God, endeavouring to actuate thatAn nescis O ho­mo quod primi­tias cordis tui & qued primo cogitos omni die Deo debeas, Ambros. in Psal. 119. good in the day whereof we did cogitate in the night. Yea, let our day-deeds be better then our night-Dreames. Nourish, accomplish, establish that Good, when awake, which was suggest­ed in sleep. And indeed good Dreams considered, in such after-duties we are undoubtedly concerned,

  • As to observe God in them,
  • So to improve them for God.

1. To observe God in such Dreames by a due reflecting upon them, and di­ligent looking back through them, to find out the foot-steps of the all-wise and [Page 304] wonder-working God, his goings and good doings in the darkest night, and in our deepest sleep.

2. To improve such Dreames for God and his praise by a present practising that good in the day, whereunto God did guid in the night. That every good Dreame, which as good seed God sows, or as a tree God plants in the night, may to the glory of his great Name, bring forth plenty of good fruit in the day.

And indeed upon all such day-duties both before and after, we may be much encouraged, by beleeving, good Dreams themselves are such considerable works,

  • As God will assist them in us,
  • As God will accept in them.

1. God will assist good Dreames in us. He will help forward these moti­ons which else in our minds could neverCor non agitare, os non aperir [...] possumus, nisi adjuvante Deo sine quo nihil possumus facere, nihil cogitare, &c. August. cont. duas Epist. Pelag. ad Boni­sacium. move. Take the best man when best awake, and a good thought cannot stirre in his heart, without divine help. Help God will give, for gracious thoughts to move in holy hearts, both when men are awake, and when asleep; let us a­wake, set to our serious desires, and [Page 305] we might in sleep find such motions fre­quent, God would bear them up, and bring them on, under all our imperfecti­ons, and against all other oppositions from sin or Satan.

2. God will accept us in Dreames that are good. Let the words of my mouth Mentem meam guberna domine ut me quid cogi­tem, nisi quod tibi gratum & placeat, ita eti­am ostendit Propheta, qualis homo pius & quomodo Deo placeant ejus o­pera vel oris, vel cordis, Mol­lerus in Locum. and the meditations of my heart, be ever acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, Psal. 19. 14. That before-named Expositor noteth, the Prophet in the place does not onely propose what is the property of a pious man, viz. To desire the thoughts of his heart may be at all times pleasing to God: but he proposeth what is the priviledge of a pious man; Pleasing to God day and night, are the thoughts of his heart; What his mind well imagineth, God graciously approveth; I doe not (saies Luther) alwayes pray, nor read, Non semper oro, lego, audio, prae­dic [...], &c. Sed e­d [...], [...]ibo, ludo, ve­stic, [...]ormio, som­nio, &c. quae om­nia recte facta divino judicio appro [...]a [...]tur d [...]r eg [...] in illis. Lut. loc. com 34. ter­tiae classis. p 98. nor preach, &c. but sometimes I eat, I drink, I sleep, I Dreame, &c. all which things, they being rightly done, I am plea­sing to God therein.

But before I further proceed, or can conveniently conclude, I shall cleare some objections, that against the present discourse may probably arise.

1. Object. Dreames are little and1. Object. low things, too mean for a good man to minde, and much less for God to regard, who is great and high, &c.

Answ. 1. Dreames be they thingsAnswer. little, and low, yet thereunto the most high God may have a great regard. Mens thoughts at all times be but small things, yet if good, a great God esteems them, and preferrs them before the works of some men that seem mighty. Mark. 12. 41, 42. Jesus sitting o­ver against the treasury, saw many rich men cast in much money. A certain poor widow threw in two mites that make a farthing, and Jesus said, this poor wi­dow hath cast in more than they all. Di­vers of the Ancients do expound thisIta Hiero. The­ophylact, Beda vid. Aquin. in Locum. place mystically and Allegorically; By rich men casting in much money, they understand specious professors with their great flourishing works God­ward; And by the widow casting in two mites; they interpret the soul of a sincere Saint, tendring to God an understanding heart and willing mind in all humility, inwardly thinking to do much more then it can perform, and [Page 307] this small matter finds great favour with God. God does accept a little night-DreameIllud pro facto reput. it Deus quod homo qui­dem vere volu­ti, sed non volu­ad implere, Bern. Epist. 77. from a true hearted-Christian, when he rejects the greatest day-deeds of a dissembling Hypocrite. A man may think of that good in his sleep, he cannot act when awake, and God may account the Dreame for the deed, and accept the deed in the Dreame.

2. Dreames suppose little things inPrincipium a quo & principi­um quod. themselves, yet may be great in their principles. Good Dreames proceed from a mutuall concurrence between God and good men, and therein are great; Whatsoever good men do (saiesQuicquid faci­unt sancti etsi sordidum glori­o sum & quan­tumvis exigu­um, magnum est, Luth. Loc. Luther) though it seem poor, 'tis rich: though vile, yet 'tis rare, and though lit­tle, yet 'tis indeed very great; But then much more what God does, we may maintain to be greater. Even good Dreames be the gracious workes of a glorious God, wherein he hath an admi­rable hand. Gods providence may have great influences upon our inferi­our businesses. Gods spirit may haveVirtutis est maxima per­tingere minu­tis sima. strong motions in our short ejaculations. God in the dead times of the night may as in Egypt, with an out-stretched hand [Page 308] passe through our hearts, when we are little aware. The soul (say some) is In formicis major anima quam in ele­phantis & in nanis quam in gigantibus. more intense and vigorous in a dwarfe, then in a Giant. More of God was act­ing in little David, than in great Goliah. As there may be much of nature and art, so of God and grace; there may beMaximus in minimis. great measures in little matters. As no sinne is little, done against a great God; so nothing is little done, by aQuae levia & quae gravia unt, non huma­no, sed divino pensantur judi­cio. August. [...]n [...]hirid. cap. 78. God that is great; Objects are not great or little, according as we appre­hend, but as God therein appeareth and thereof approveth. Little things may be great, and great things little in our sight and sense. Rich mines of goldOpulentissima metalla quorum in alto latent verae. Sen. E­pist. 23. Altis­sima flumina minimo sono la­ [...]untar, Q [...]. Curt. lib. 7. may lie so low in the earth, as little or no­thing seen; and strong streames of water may passe by our doors that make but a little sound. God may have great workes in our hearts when awake, and therefore sure in our sleep that may to our sense seem little.

3. Dreames suppose little, yet may be great in their progresse and products. That which comes, as little to us in the night, may come to be great in the day. In the day God may water that which he [Page 309] did plant in the night, and so may it grow to be great. Great may our night­thoughts grow even through our day­endeavours. Those little Babes which be born in the night, we nourish in the day. We should not make good Dreames to be like Jonah his Gourd, that sprung in a night and perished in the night, but cherish them in all good ways when awake; and so may they waxe great at last, that were but little at first. The Parable reports of the mustard seed Mat. 13. 31, 32. Homo qui semi­nat in agro suo a pleris (que) sa [...] ­vator noster in­telligitur, qui in animis cred [...]n­tium seminat, Hieronym. that a man sowed in his field, which indeed is the least of all seeds, but when it is grown it is a great tree; so that the Birds of the aire lodge in the Branches thereof. This Scripture Jerome unfolding did af­firm, that many Interpreters by the man sowing, did understand Christ our Savi­our; by the field, the hearts of the faith­full; by the mustard seed sowen, the infu­sions of good motions in their minds, which are small matters at first, but atVide Salmero­nis sermones in Parabolas E­vangelica [...]. length so enlarge, that the very Angels of Heaven, expressed by the birds of the air, doe delight and take pleasure therein. And were we wise, those little sparks which God in our sleeping­time [Page 310] lets fall upon our hearts from Hea­ven, we might when awake, so kindle up, as the Lord himself might be in love therewith. O let not us slight God in the least of his graces! As we must not dispise the day of small things, no moreZech. 7. 10. vid Calvin in locum. Si in omnibus, etiam in parvis providentia dei, multo ma­gis, Hieron. in Mat. 10. Tom. 2. the night. The great God regards little things that relate to us; Even the haires of our head are numbred, much more the thoughts of our hearts! O let us observe the smallest things that pro­ceed from God, even to what he suggests in our sleep!

2. Object. Knowing men of severallHuc spectat il­lud [...]atonis, Somnia ne cures nam mens hu­mana quod op­tat, ut qui cap­tat umbras, & persequitur ventos, ita est qui se ad hibet somniis, &c. Ecclesiastici. c. 34. v. 2, 5, 7. sorts, in severall seasons have condemned the observation of Dreames.

Answer. Observation of Dreames men may indeed condemn, yet with this double caution and concession.

1. Though all Dreames are not fit for some observation, yet some observati­on is fit for all Dreames.

We grant from due grounds men may condemn (as to some sort of Dreames) a double observation,Homo est ani­mal curiosum, sed cave inqui­rere, quae non debes scire, cu­riositas pericu­losa praesumptio est, Ber. de pug­na Spir. Ser. 2. & de modo be­ne vivend. Ser. 44. August. de utilitate cre­dendi. c. 9. & lib. de vera re­ligione.

  • Curious, &
  • Credulous.

1. Curious,] Christians are not criti­cally [Page 311] and with excesse care to observe or to busie themselves about some kind of Dreames, that may be dark and doubtfull. An humble industry to search into such secrets so farre as foot-steps may be found in the word of God, is good: but with a proud curiosity pre­sumptuously to pry into such mysteri­ous matters without a right use of Scrip­ture, is an evill, Austin, and others, have excellently declared against, in some sutable cases.

2. Credulous] Christians must not be light of beliefe. Dreames there be, as we have seen, wherein Satan acts so sub­tilly, as we must not observe them with Assent to them or delight in them, least we take Poison for Physick.

What evill men hugg in sleep, they ought to fling away when awake.

Yet some observation may be fit for all Dreames. No Dreames but may beNon omnium somniorum cura est prohibita, sed tantum eo­rum quae vel Daemoniaca vel temeraria esse const at. Paraeus Tom. in Gen. cap. 4 [...]. observed, so it be,

  • From right minds, &
  • To right Ends.

1. Minds right] To observe Dreames with understandings rightly informed. A candle of good knowledge, light and set [Page 312] up in the soule to see by, so that we doe not grope in the dark, or make blind a­nimadversions, but use well opened eyes, not onely without, but within, Lege Pretinm & Pareum in Locum. Revel. 4. 8.

2. Ends right] To observe Dreams, so as to guid our selves to good acts and effects according as the kind of Dreames require; If bad, to observe them that we may see the evill of them; the Devill in them, that we may be humbled for them, and fly from them, and all that sin to which they tend; If good, to observe them, that we may see the good of them and God in them, that we may be thank­full for them, and be bettered by them.

2. Though we are not some way toAnswer. 2. observe some Dreames, yet all Dreames divine ought every way to be observed. Such Dreames 'tis our undoubted duty to, ponder;

  • In their Productions,
  • In their Distinctions;
  • In their Directions, &
  • In their Predictions.

1. In their Productions: As they [...]. certainly proceed from God and are his wonderfull all-watching works in our [Page 313] sleep; And indeed as they that go down into the sea; so they who lye down in their Beds, may sometimes see the won­ders of the Lord, Psal. 107. 33.

2. In their distinctions: Though Satan be subtill and seek to assimilate and imitate God, yet in Dreames divine, to observe and discern cleer differences from Dreames Diabolicall,Impressas ple­run (que) habent notas quibus a­deo else planè agnoscuntur. Paraeus. Tom. in Genes. cap. 41. carrying Characters of Gods Heaven­ly hand in our hearts, making such im­pressions and moving such affections, as are seen to be serious and solid; so that we may certainly say. This is none other but the work of God; as Jacob awak­ing from such a Dreame, concluded. This is none other but the house of God, Gen. 28. 27.

3. In their Directions: To observeIn somniis di­vinitus missis quasi breves audiuntur voces quid fugien­dum, quid a­gendum sit, ad­monentes. Iam­blicus. lib. de mysteriis. what evill they direct us from, and what good they direct us to. God by Dreames does sometime warn men to beware of evills, sinfull and painfull, which they are prone to and in perill of. God also by Dreames does sometimes put on persons to pious actions purpo­sing either their own advantage thereby or the benefit of others, which they [Page 314] be bound to observe. Men may hear a voice in the bed, like that voice behind, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, Isa. 30. 21.

4. In their Predictions: We are to observe what God may by Dreames foretel. True, in this caseNomine Divinationis intelligi­tur p [...]aenunciatio quaedam futu­rorum; Divinatio peccatum est quo quis sibi usurpat futurorum, ut futura sunt, notitiam & prae­dicationem ad Deum proprie per­tinentem. Aquin. 22ae. Quaest. 95. Art. 1. Nullo igitur pacto u­tendum est hujusmodi hominibus res futuras praesagientibus, Pha­vorin. lib. 14. is required much care: Pre­nunciation, or Divination may soon be a sin, and by Dreames to divine is very dangerous. Divers men of evill minds have hereby been misled, as from some (some way so minded) we may learn.

Yet Divination by divine Dreames,Divinat [...]o per somnia divina omnino lici [...]a est Christiano fi­des (que) illi semper est adhibenda quippe quae vera & divina est, Zanc. Tractat. de Divinat. or a reporting what God does in Dreames reveale, is a Christian du­ty, as Zanchius, Paraeus, and other Orthodox Authors cleerly conclude, in relation unto things hereafter to come. As God in days past to Joseph, Daniel, and divers others of his dear servants did in Dreames declare some future things that should come to passe: So in dayes present, God possibly may make known by Dreames some following [Page 315] things which men concerned ought to observe. Doe sinfull men observe the Devill in his Dreame pre­dictionsVid. Augustin. Tom. 3. lib. Dedi­vina. daemonum. Item Tom. 2. Epi. 115. [...]d Nebridium. vide, cap. 5. de Divin. Diabolus multa praedicit, futura tamen non omnia, multa sed non vera vera, sed mente fal­laci. Zanch▪ Tract. de Divi­natione. Daemon veritatem di­cit, sed ut decipiat. Aquin. 1a. pa. Qu. 64. who may foretell some future things but not all? Some true things but many false, some true mat­ters but with a false mean­ning, his designe being ever to deceive?

And shall not good men observe God Per somnia di­vina certa & [...] vera divinatio haberi potest & quidem earum rerum omnium quae per illa somnia signifi­cantur. Ratio, Zan. Tractat. de Devinatione. Quae quia nostro tempore rariora sunt, ideo non temere sunt ja­ctanda. Paraeus Tom. in Gen. cap. 41. in his predictions by Dreames, who is able to foretell all future things infalli­bly, who never foretells any thing but truth: And alwayes as true matters; so with a true meaning to advance truth and holinesse by righteous and regular wayes, and meanes?

This with God was formerly more frequent, yet now not impossible; And though it be not now Gods usuall way, yet when ever God goes this way, surely we ought to observe him. Yea all sorts of divine Dreames are alway for Gods sake to be observed.

3. Object. But Satan is subtill andObject. 3. may soon deceive men with Dreams meer­ly pretended from God.Answer.

[Page 316] Answer. About this I shall discourse in a double way,Erronei Spiritus bodie multipli­cantur qui or­bem terrarum perturbant som­niis suis, sicut Anabaptista­rum exemplum probat. Luther, loc. 4ae. classis.

  • Of Concession thereto, &
  • Of Consideration thereon.

1. Concession: So subtill we may well say is Satan, that to set forward his foul deceits with the fuller successes, he useth faire pretences. Luther observ­eth a double design of Satan in convey­ance of lying Dreames and such like de­lusions;

  • He covers himself from men, &
    Nullus error venit a Diabo­lo sub titulo er­roris, sed—Nec Diabolus ipse venit ut Di­abolus, sed—Non [...]ult Dia­bolus, deformis & ater esse in suis so nniis, dis▪ camus hoc esse proprium artifi­cium Diaboli ut ater Diabolus non agit. Luth. Loc. Quintae classis, cap. 8.
  • He colours all over with God.

1. Himself as he is, he covers: He comes not in the form or with the face of a Devill, but cunningly conceales himselfe; closely hiding his own hor­rid and hellish shape. When he comes abroad upon such businesse he casts off his cloathes of darknesse, and as a black Devill he does not act, nor so is he seen.

2. He colours all with God: Makes his proposals appear so plausible as if plainly proceeding from the true Spi­rit of God as the Ground, and verily intending the great Glory of God as the End. He puts out all his Books, [Page 317] and Baits his Doctrines and Dreames, as glorious discoveries fromDiabolus ludibrio suo hominum mentes ita fascinavit ut somnia & mendacia sua pro certissima veritate & clarissima luce am­plectantur. Fanatici spiritus ho­die quicquid somniant volunt esse spiritum sanctum: Sed egregie Basillus dixit [...], &c. Tamen jurant per omnia sacra se nihil aliud cogitare quam at promo­veant gloriam Dei & salutem animarum. Somniant se ha­bere singularem sanctitatem, Luther, ibid. Heaven of cleerer light, greater Graces, purer ways, surer truths, and more sute­able to the mind of Christ, and rule of Scripture, and so with good words and faire suggestions he deceives the minds of the simple. Such subtill designs the Devill even by Dreames drove in Luthers times, and no doubt in the like manner he may in our dayes delude the soules of simple ones.

2. Consideration: Such Satanicall Dreames considered, with which the minds of men may be soon deceiv­ed, may well occasion divers duties to­wards good Dreames to be the more carefully performed by all good Chri­stians:

  • The more to discern them,
  • The more to desire them,
  • The more to esteem them, &
  • The more to retain them▪

1. To discern Dreames the more, [Page 318] that come indeed from God. Now such are certainly seen by a Double signe,

  • Their resemblings of him, &
  • Their returnings to him.

1. Such Dreames they do resemble God: There is in them that Truth, Ho­linesse, Goodnesse, Purenesse, Spiri­tualnesse, and such like properties, as bear some similitude with God himself. We may be sure, man was the work­manship of Vide Eplpha­ni. haeres. 70. August. lib. de Spiritu. & anima. cap. 39. Ambros. Ser. 10. in. Psa. 119. God, because he was made after the Image of God. The An­tients though they much differ in deter­mining, wherein the Image of God con­sisteth in man; yet they all agree, that in man is so much of Gods Image, as proveth his certain subsistence from God. In an Image there is not onely a resemblance, Analogie or similitude of one thing to another, but there is aAquin. prima par. Qu. 85. & 88. Deduction, derivation, impression of that similitude upon the one, from the other, with relation thereunto. Now as man that hath Dreames in him; so there be Dreames in man, upon which is such an Impresse of the similitude of [Page 319] God, such cleer Characters of Gods I­mage Imprinted, as proves them to pro­ceed from God. It remains a maxime Whatever is in God is God, and what­ever Quicquid est in Deo est Deus, & quicquid est a Deo est Deo simile. is of God is like unto God, & [...] con­verso.

2. Such Dreames they do return to God. Eccles. 1. 7. All rivers runne into the Sea, from whence they come, and thither they return again. This observed made One say, As the Sea is the Mother of Pul [...]hrum quo­que quod quum mare fluminum sit mater▪ flumi­n [...] tanquam fi­liae, Caesarius Frater, Nazi­anz. Dialog. 1. Vide. August. de origine ani­ma [...]um, lib. 2. c. 5 [...]. &. Cole­rum l. de ani­marum immor­talitate Liber amplus & doctus. Rivers, so the Rivers, as the Daughters runne into the Womb again. Mans rea­sonable soule is discerned not to be by Traduction from Parents, but by its first infusion from God as its Father; because separated from the body by death, it immediately returns to God that gave it, Eccles. 12. 7. Things that have God for their Author, incline to make God their Center, that whence they take their Rise, there they may take their Rest. Water which being an heavy body bends downward, yet is apt to ascend as high as its own spring. Such Dreames as are the mountings of theVide Wende. Comt. phys. Sect. 1. p. 1. c. 20. mind and as make the mind to mount, 'tis manifest their spring-head is in Hea­ven. [Page 320] Did not they come from God, they would not so bend back to God a­gain. It plainly appeares their origi­nall was from him, because their re­flects are to him and their contents are in him, &c. Thus may we discerne Dreames from God, and thus should we the rather discerne God in Dreames, con­sidering Satans design in Dreames to de­ceive.

2. To desire Dreames the more wherein God is manifest. Shall the De­vill be industrious to obtrude Dreames upon us, that do pretend to God, and shall not we endeavour to obtain such Dreames as do proceed from God in­deed? Luther observes how diligentNullus doctor tam diligens in veritate semi­nanda, quam Diabolus pro falsitate somni­anda; est enim Satanae pectus foecundissimum mendaciis, Luther. the Devill is to disperse his deceits, how his breast is full of lies, and he la­bours day and night to bring them forth under fair appearances. Should not we then the rather begg into our bo­somes an abundance of those blessed Dreames that be indeed from God, con­ducting us in the undoubted way of truth?

3. To esteem Dreames derived from God the rather. The more coun­terfeit [Page 321] coyne is up and down the more we account, and love to receive Silver and Gold that is good. When the De­vill is night and day, day and night scattering among many his guilded mo­ney, we should the higher prize that precious gold given into our hearts by Gods hand from Heaven. Consider­ing the goodnesse of Gods wheat, we should (saies Luther) live the moreVigilandum est nobis summa cura contra Di­abolum obam­bulantem ne dormientibus nobis veniat ip­se & seminat Zizania inter Dei Triticum Luther. vigilant to prevent the Devill, that in our sleep he may not sow his tares; and considering the subtilty of Satan to sow such tares, should incite us to set Gods wheat at the higher rate; I meane to estimate good Dreames from God at the greater price.

3. To retain these Dreames with the stronger hand and faster hold. Luther likewise reports of some, who did so doat upon their delusive Dreams, that from them they would not be drawen by a­nyNec ab his suis somniis patiun­tur se ullis mo­nitis aut Scrip­turis abduci. Quia persuassi­mi sunt, se solos sapere alios om­nes caecutire, Luther. strength of Reason, or Scripture-argu­ment, supposing in sacred things them­selves only wise, and all others igno­rant. O how in an humble way ought holy hearts to hold Heavenly Dreames, and with good care to keep them firme [Page 322] and fast in their remembring-minds.

4. Object. But we see so many in our4. Object. times miserably mistaken with their tran­ces, strang extasies, and raptures, visions, and revelations, as may make as misdoubt all suggestions, and be afraid of all unusuall motions, &c.

Answer. Unusuall motions, sug­gestions,Answer. raptures, revelations, and visions, it may well become Christians to question, and with care to examine, that so they may with the more pru­dence,

  • Eschew the bad, &
  • Pursue the good.

'Tis very memorable of the virgin Mary, when the Angell of the Lord was sent and said to her, Haile, thou art high­ly favoured, the Lord is with thee, and blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at this saying, and cast in her mind what man­ner of salutation this should be, Luk. 1. 28, 29. However this comfortable discovery came from God, yet this good woman does not suddenly receive it, but seriously considers it. Austin and others of the Ancients observe, [Page 323] That as she was not wholly suspicious, Dictum ex ami navit virgo & neque manifeste obstitit p [...]r in­credulitatem nec statim paret ex le vitate. Ambros. lib. 2. in Lucam. c. 1. so she would not be rashly credulous. Though thus commonly men and wo­men are made, by delusive motions, de­ceiving visions, and lying revelations. The falsenesse of which suggestions, whether asleep, or awake, may be fur­ther found out,

  • By what they divert men from, &
  • By what they transport men to.

1. They divert, turn and take men off, from those things that true discoveries from God do keep men to,

  • From the publike Ministery,
  • From conscience of the Sabbath,
  • From the rule of Scripture.
  • From relative duties, &c.

1. They withdraw persons fromLege Luth. Loc. Com. Clas. 4th De ministerio verbi & Sac. Sive Hierar­chiae. the publike ministery, so that they will not heare the Gospell publikely preach­ed by the most faithfull dispensers, though those perhaps which formerly themselves rejoyced in, and blessed God for. Luther relating the case of some Anabaptists in Germany, who by Dreames and such like wayes were deluded, saies thus; We have now [Page 324] daily experiences of divers who not long since, not only willing­ly, Hoc experimus hodie in psud [...] fratribus nostris Anabaptistis qui initio causae Evangelicae li­benter imo avide nos au [...]ie­bant ac agnoscebant donum spi­ritus sancti in nobis, ac propter illud reverebantur nos tanquam Dei ministros; at nunc d nobis egressi subversi sunt nemo ma­gis intensus est doctrinae & eti­am nomini nostro, quam ipsi, &c. Luther. but even hungrily heard us preach, acknowledged God in us, and esteemed us as the Ministers of God, are now gone from us, and there is none that doe lesse endure our Doctrine, or abide our name then they, &c.

2. They decline men from a consci­onall keeping the Lords day. Hence though some have entred their names, and so are bound to beare armes, and ought to fight under the colours of Christ, that they may maintain all the concernments of Christ, yet they trea­cherously deliver up this fort-royall of Christ. The Christian sabbath. The sabbath whereof Christ is the Lord Hierony. de re­sur. Domini. di [...]ir. Sicut Maria [...]ergo in­ter omnes muli­eres principa­tum tenet ita inter caeter [...]s Dies haec Dies [...]m [...]um dierum est Mater. they leave. This day they disregard, that God from the beginning hath made among dayes the most blessed. They pluck and fling away this sabbath flower, as not sit to grow within the garden of Christ.

3. The Rule of Scripture lying [...]eve­lations lead men from. Hereb [...]n [Page 325] are made to become carelesse of Scrip­ture grounds and bounds, onely so farre as to defend their own falsities: Out of the fine and pure web of Gods word, they cut out so much cloath as to cover their own brats, and cast by all the rest as raggs and refuse, or old garments notScripturam non ad mittunt, sed tantum soliciti sunt quomodo sictis & emen­titis e capit [...] suo glossis adductos contra se Scrip­turae locos elu­dant ac somnia sua in Scriptu­ram invecta defendant, &c. Luther. fit to be worne. Men are onely solici­tous (saies Luther) being deluded, for to elude such Scaiptures as are contrary to their errors, and contrary to the true sense of Scriptures, to maintain their Dream-errors are their daily and diligent endeavours.

4. From relative and domestick duties, hereby are men drawn as we may see in our daies divers. Severall considered we may well take up the complaint of Philo, who comparing some in his time with Gods primitive people; They (saies he) were called Vae vae nobis vi­demus—Illi cultores & cultrices, hi ho­die vastatores & vastatrices, Philo. Tillers, because as husbandmen till their fields and manure their grounds, so did they teach their families, and nur­ture their children and servants, with good instructions. But these (saies he) may rather be called wasters then tillers, Lege Chrysost. Homil 6. in Matth. rather destroyers then instructers, for they [Page 326] ruine their families, while they let them lie like fallow fields, &c. Now who may we expect to performe, that are more manifest to omit, these Domestick mat­ters, than men misled by mistaken reve­lations. Reading the Scripture, prayer, singing of Psalms, though formerly of singular use, most sinfully they now lay aside.

2. Such raptures, visions and revela­tions, do transport men to such evills as true discoveries from God keep men from,Verbum est quod mutat afficit & corda homi­num humiliat. Revelationes autem inflant arrogantes fa­ciunt. Somniant se habere singula­rem sanctitatem modestiam pa­tientiam puri­tatem doctrinae perfectionem vi­tae. Se posse subli­miora & magis saluturia do­cere. Hoc unum spe­ctantes ut no­men & laudem raealiis acqui­pant—

  • To pride and arrogancy,
  • To errour and heresie,
  • To lyes and calumnies,
  • To hatred and cruelties, &c.

1. They prompt men to pride and ar­rogancy. Luther laying down differen­ces between Gods word, and such like revelations; That (saies he) changes, affects, humbles and laies low the Hearts of men; but these puffe up mens hearts with pride, and make them arrogant, high and haughty: So that men thus incited, (saies he) in open-day they Dreame they have all singular excellencies, they are sub­limated to higher designes, they alone know the mind of Christ, &c. Hence [Page 327] such seperate themselves from others,Nemo inquiunt ante me hoc Christi novit e­go primus vidi, Luther. and elevate themselves above others, they love to ride in the Chariot of high praises, and that others may runne by and bow, &c.

2. They dispose men to errors andHaeresus Grecis dicitur ab eli­gendo. Horum mentes Diabo lus suo ludibrio ita fas­cina vit ut men­dacia & horri­biles errores pertina [...]iter te­nnet. Nec asuis­sonmis se abdu­ci, &c. heresies. Heresie is more then an ordi­nary error. 'Tis a foule errour freely chosen and held fast with a fixed inflexiblenesse, &c. These raptures and revelations make men runne into most damnable o­pinions, racing foundations, and raising such buildings, which though abominably bad, they boldly maintain, and will not be beat out. This likewise of the same Luther observed.

3. They move men to make lyes and lay calumnies upon others to them con­trary. We have, Multi vafri & pestilentes homi­nes qui omnia sua pessima di­cta & facta—miris figuris & artibus sciunt or na [...]e è contra aliorum bene­facta & dicta ejusalem atribus calumniari—ex quolibet ver­bo novas depra­vationes tor­quent—& ali­ud veniat in accusatione [...] quam purasse­mus. many guilefull men (saies Luther) who will give the fairest glosses upon their own foulest facts and faslest words, but mis-interpret and mis-re­port the best and most innocent words and deeds of other men, they wrest well­meaning words, and raise reports of things never thought, much lesse said or done, They asperse others with reproaches, painting them alwayes in the blackest colours.

[Page 328]4. They incline mens minds to cruell hatred, and to hatefull cruelties. Lu­ther speaking of the Anabaptists abound­ing about him, who much vapoured and vaunted themselves of their Dreams and visions, raptures and revelations; I have very often (saies he)Saepe vehementer admirari soleo unde tam saevum & atrox odium in animos eorum qui nos tam a­manter complexi sunt tam subito [...]adere potest—novos magistros au­dierunt horum veneno infecti ita accensi sunt oderunt Papistas sed non tam a [...]r [...]citer atque nos im­plecabili odio contra nos laborent & ardeant—veram doctrinam e­vertunt pa [...]em publicam perturbant nihil aliud dei noctuque ag [...]tant quam ut nos maxime nocere pos­sint, &c. Luther. very much marvelled at these men, what should be the matter, that they who former­ly loved and favoured us, are now so implacably fierce against us: They pretend (saith he) they hate the Pa­pists, but to be sure they more sorely hate us; certainly some of those subtill masters have changed their minds, &c. These, these (saies he) are they, who night and day, contrive by what meanes to mischief us, to make our labours void, and our persons vile, &c. And into what bloo­dy practises such proceeded, is sad to say; perturbing the publike peace, slandering all setled wayes of sacred worship; so that as Lactantius said of Lucian, Nec Diis nec hominibus pe­percit. They neither spared God nor man.

Thus 'tis manifest, what motions, vi­sions, [Page 329] revelations, suggestions, awake or asleep, do not proceed from God, but from God those Revelations, Illumi­nations, Inspirations, Impressions, vi­sions, Dreames do proceed, that with­draw men from arrogancies, heresies, calumnies, cruelties, blasphemies, and all impieties, and keep Christians close to the duties of the Lords-Day, publike ordinances, family-performances, and all Scripture-Rules relating to holy life,

In the 2 Cor. 12. The Holy Apostle reporting his heavenly raptures and re­velations of the Lord, let us seriously observe,

  • What he forbeareth, &
  • What he declareth,

1. He forbeareth in setting forthQua propter ad declinandam suspicionem ja­ctantiae quasi de alio quodam ho­mine rem nar­rat Estius. those celestiall things, wherein him­self was surely and solely concern­ed,

  • All application to himself, &
  • All exaltation of himself.

1. He applies not the things to himself, but puts on a Prosopopeia representing all under the person of another man. I knew a man in Christ, caught up into Pa­raradise, [Page 330] and I knew such a man taken up Ita (que) in ea re est fictio que­dam personae ve­lut a sua per­sonadiversae. Aretius. into the third Heaven: he heard un­speakable words: not a word as if this were himself, but himself he covereth and concealeth.

2. He exalteth not himself upon this or any other account. Nay not onely does he at present refraine, but he re­solves for the future, that he will not vaunt, boast or glory of himself. Yet Vid. Hierony. in Epistol. ad E [...]stocium de custodia virgi­nitatis, &c. of my self I will never glory. And he renders a reason of this forbearance; But I forbear, lest any man should think of me above what he seeth me to be. This bles­sed Apostle was lowest on earth, when he had been highest in Heaven, and least in himself, when he had been great­est with God.

2. He declareth after these high rap­tures and Heavenly revelations,

  • His sensiblenesse of sinne, &
  • His supplicating against sinne.
    Stimulus, in carne, An­gellus, Satanae vocatur, quia Diaboli partes & regnum ad­juvat incitand [...] homines ad pec­cata & inqui­namenta carnis.

1. Of sinne he declareth himself ex­ceeding sensible: He mournfully com­plaineth of a thorne in the flesh, the mes­senger of Satan buffeting him. The best Interpreters understand this of some strong corruption incited and set for­ward [Page 331] by Satans temptation, which sore­ly assaulted and pitifully perplexed this precious man, as with pitious paine, dolour and deep sorrow.

2. Against sinne he supplicated God,Lege August. Tract. 98. Joan. Gregor. Hom. 4. in Ezek. Hugo victor. Qu. 34. Sup Epist. that from him this evill might in mercy be removed. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. He then sought to have sin set far­thest from him, when his soul had been set neerest to God: His raptures did not streiten his prayers, his visions of God did not stay his confessions of sin, &c.

So then we may safely say, such sug­gestions, revelations, visions, Dreams, as draw us more to God, set us more a­gainst sin, make us more holy, humble, prayerfull, &c. are good, and such where­of we should be glad.

5. Object. If such Dreames are so5. Object. good, why then are they so rare and so few of them found in good men.

Answer. Their paucity may proveAnswer. their excellency, things most excellentQuod ad excel­lentiam pertinet paucis compe­tit. Aquin. are most rare and fewest thereof to be found. Good Dreames are things excellent from God though they be [Page 332] not frequent with men.

2. Men good may have more, of these in their minds then they manifest. This amongst men is a remarkable difference; Some have not that good in them they speak of; and others have much moreJactat ille me­rita sed tegit vulnera. Bern. good in them, then whereof they speak: Some, Pharisee-like, they boast of the good that is in them, but the evil that is in them they hide: Others like the Publican they confesse their evill, but much good there is in them they conceal. God up­on the spirits and souls of his saints, both awake and asleep, hath severall sweet workings the world knows not off. Even in holy Dreames God may bring Heaven down into their hearts, or carry their hearts up into heaven, when others are not acquainted therewith, but utterly ignorant thereof. As the sick paulsie man, Mat. 9. while he lay in his bed, his body by some friends was let down to Jesus in the house for his cure. So the souls of some of Gods Saints, lying in their beds, have been by blessed Dreames lifted up into Hea­ven and come before Christ to their com­forts.

[Page 333]3. The rarenesse of such soul-refresh­ing Dreames, should draw Christians upon the learning a double lesson,

  • The cause why they are so few, &
  • The course how they may be more.

1. We should enquire into the cause why good Dreames be so scarce, and come so seldom from God. God may so seldome send in such suggestions while we are asleep, because of our ill car­riage to good motions when we are a­wake,

  • As our intermissions therein,
  • And our opposition thereto.

1. We so much intermit and inter­rupt good motions from God: And touching good meditations on God, we make such wide pauses and long inter­valls, and doe so little stay our minds on good matters in the day, that no marvellChristianus ille est, qui dormiens, vigilans surgens, cubans, stan [...], in­grediens, quo­cun (que) momento ita est affectus in corde suo. Credo in Deum patrem Domini nostri Jesu Christi qui pro me sanguinem fundit we meet with no more immissions from God in the night. He is a Christian (saies Luther) who standing, and going, lying down, and rising up, sleeping, and waking, keeps his heart warm with be­leeving applications, and enlivening meditations of the mercies of God, the merits of Christ, &c. But alas we are [Page 334] herein so loose, so little, so short, so slight, and put so many broken stops toHoc sine inter­missione credit. Luther. the best thoughts, that night and day in this secret manner God may meet us the seldomer.

2. We (which is worse) so much op­pose and resist God in his gracious ap­proaches and intimate accesses to our souls: We strike down what we should stirre up, 2 Tim. 1. 6. and what we should kindle we quench, 1 Thes. 5. 19. Zanchius upon the place observeth, that men quench or put out Gods holy fire, that falls from Hea­ven [...], 2 Tim. 1. Bifa­riam extingui­turlignis, 1. Si ligna non ad­das, 2. Si aqua perfundas. Zan. in Locum. upon their hearts, as by not adding of words; so by powring on water. When instead of making an addition of good matter, we make a sinfull opposi­tion to matter that is good, God may withdraw his motions, and seldome visit our minds either by night or by day.

2. We should seek out and set upon such a positive course as may procure Gods frequent converse with our souls, that he may in night-seasons send in such motions, in larger measures and great­er numbers.

[Page 335]And for that purpose to ponder things of two sorts,

  • Sound articles of faith, &
  • Good examples of life.

1. Sound Articles of faith in our souls, we should settle and seriously consider. In my heart (saies Luther)In corde meo iste unus regnat Articulus Scili­cet fides Christi ex quo per quem & in quem om­nes mea diu noctu (que) fluunt & refluunt The­ologicae Cogita­tiones—Luth. 2ae. Clas. Loc. 18. &c. I let this article reign, of firm faith in Christ, out of whom, by and about whom all my thoughts both day and night do flow and re-flow. Plenty of such principles implanted in us, and improved by us, may profit us much to the multiply­ing, as of good meditations in the day, so of good conceptions in the night.

2. Good examples of holy life, day­ly laid before our eyes, may be a means to encrease good Dreames: viewed examples, and visible objects, have not onely an attractive, but an assimila­tive power, to produce, and forme Phan­tasms, and such imaginations as suite thereunto: O how the mind is ready to rise and runne thereupon! To look up­on the lives of good men, to view their vertuous actions, and behold their holy conversations, is excellent. The more [Page 336] of those good visions we have in the day, the more we may have of these good Dreames in the night.

4. Have we found good Dreames but few in times that are past, this should put us on the more for present and future, by desires, prayers and en­deavours every night that comes, to cause our hearts to keep wakefull, that they may be the more vigilant and ob­servant of God. God may often make overtures to us herein, and we take no notice thereof, God, saies Elihu, Job 33. speaks once, yea twice in a Dreame by night, and men perceive him not. When our bodies are asleep in our beds, grace may be asleep in our hearts, and our hearts asleep as to grace, and as unto God, so that we then regard him not. Many words by night God speaks, and many motions he makes, and we minde him not. Did but we seek to set our hearts into such an ever watchfull frame as is fit, we might in this manner finde more of God, and by night heare more of his minde, then ever we did. Wicked men can Ʋt jugulent homines, sur­gunt de nocte latrones: ut te­ispum serves non expergisce­ris. S. Horat, lib. 1. Epist. 2. keep their bodies a­wake, and in the night to watch for [Page 337] their prey, and work with the Devill: and shall not we keep our minds alwaies awake for our profit, to watch for, and waite upon God, to meet him coming, to see his first step into our souls, and heare the first word he speaks to our hearts? As oft as we laydown our bodies to sleep, we should call up our hearts and minds, to awake, and attend Gods work; Awake Psaltery and Harp, I my self will awake right early. Though our hearts be abroad in the day, yet let them lodge with Christ at night. Mr Bradford, that blessed martyr saies,Act. & Monum, 1503. in a certain letter, that as a wife, though in the day time she may eat, and drink, sit, talk, and walk with her neigh­bours, yet when night comes, she keeps her bed, for her husband alone: So the Soule of a Christian that during the day goes out to meet, and mind necessa­ry matters of the world, yet at night preserves the bed for intimate converse with Christ; Christs sweetnesse; We should so study; mind and meditate by day, as to resolve our hearts and He shall lye neere all night. My beloved is to me as a bundle of myrrh, he shall [Page 338] lye all night betwixt my breasts, Cant. 1. 13.

5. If yet for future, we find good Dreames but few, and meet with lit­tle of Christ in our sleep, it must the more prompt and provoke us to walk the more with Christ, and work the more for God in the day, by the more plenti­full practice of all pious duties. Did we know how pretious time is, and didIn tempore su­mus & quid tempus sit igno­ramus. but we remember how much pretious time goes out in our sleep, and did but we consider how little of God is enjoy­ed all that time, it might much move us the more largly to lay out the time of the day in all holy duties. Do we sleep out whole nights, and not heare one good word from God, nor of God have any one good thought? And shall we passe away, the day also, and Christ and our hearts, God and our minds scarse meet? Doe we lodge so much asunder in our sleep, O let us live the more together when awake? it may be blame-worthy, we have no more com­munion with God in good Dreames. In­deed it is sad, that deceiving Dreames, the Devils tares should come up so thick, [Page 339] and grow so fast in the worst of our fields; and that in the best of our fields, Gods wheat of good Dreames should spring up so thinne and thrive so little. Alas a multitude of vain, idle, foolish, and frivolous Dreames, like birds at night, that lodge in the trees of our hearts, and boughs of our thoughts, when good Dreames are driven away, and by night be forced to flye. As in Pharaohs Dreames, the leane kine de­voured the fat, &c. So in our DreamsQuia paulatim pertranseunt quidam motus a vig [...]a [...]t [...] ad dormientes, mel [...] ora sunt phanasm ata studiosorum quam quorum—libet & propter animae bonam affectio [...]em quadam in som­nis clarent—Et ea occurrunt hominibus phan­tasiae in dor­miendo cir [...]a quae e [...] cagita­tio fuit in vigi­lando. Aquin 22ae Quaest. 95. A [...]t. 5. matters bad prevent much good, imper­tinent and idle things shut out all seri­ous thoughts. This I say is sad, but more mournfull may this be made, if in the day also we live, look, and labour but little for God. Indeed did we in the day time abound in good; delight in holy obedience, and make religion our businesse, we might meet more of God in our minds at midnight. Aquinas ob­serveth, that commonly good students in the day, have best Dreames in the nights and they who have the best affections when awake, have the best suggestions in sleep. Were we in the day. more with God by meditation, and prayer, it [Page 340] might promote these matters in the night. As for evill Dreames, we shouldSaepe merogas­se Dominum ne­mini somnia vel visiones permit­teret—multi e­nim fanatici spiritus me a­derti sunt, quo­rum alius som­nia, alius visio­nes jactabat—ardentibus vo­tis deprecatus sum, Luther. pray against them; My Lord, let this Dreame be to them that hate thee, Dan. 4. 19. So, for good Dreames to pray; Lord, let such Dreames be to all them that love thee! Were these our daily pray­ers to God, and were our day-meditati­ons on God, delights in God, and la­bours for God, it might fare farre bet­ter with us by night. Did we like God in the Creation, looke back upon eve­ry dayes work, whether good: and did we every evening make cleere with God, and never dare to go to bed in our sinnes, we might in the night meet much of God in our soules. O how comfortable might it be, if day, and night, by holy motions, we made our minds to mount upward! Among ma­ny marvellous things recorded by Ga­latinus, out of the Jewish Doctors to have been about the Temple at Jeru­salem, this was one; That as fire was continually kept in the Brazen Altar, for burnt-offerings, so no wind, nor wea­ther, could night or day hold down the smoke thereof, but it would by a di­rect [Page 341] and strait line, still ascend up to­wards Heaven. Thus ought it to be with our soules, against corruptions, temptations, persecutions, &c. Our minds should day and night, in good motions go directly to God, as a com­fortable evidence, and infallible fruit of holy fire, kept kindled in our hearts. Were we expert in this work, O how much good might we see, and do in the dark!

6. Object. Dreame-discoveries are6. Object. but like candle lights, or starre lights: no need of them, seeing now that the Sun of the Gospel shineth out bright in our eyes.

Answer. 1. Though the GospelAnswer. of Christ (or rather Christ in the Gos­pell) now shines as the Sunne, yet that need not put out all candles, or extin­guish the light of these stars, starres are of good use, though the sunne does surpasse. Of the Suns superexcellency, severall Philo de o­pi [...]cio mundi, Ambros, lib. 4▪ Hexam, cap. [...]. Plutarc. li [...]. 2. de pla [...]itis phi­losoph▪ rum, cap. 22. &c. 31. A [...]. de vivit Dei, [...]. cap. Authors speak admirably, and amply: yet also they grant, that much of the great God, in little stars doth ap­pear; of his power, prudence, provi­dence, for the pleasure and profit of [Page 342] mankind in the world. 'Tis observed, God did not make the starres first, and after abolish them, having created the Sunne. But God is said, first to make the Sunne, and after 'tis said, He made the starres also, Gen. 1. 16. 'Tis also observed that not onely the Eclipsing of the Sunne, but the Si stellae ca­dunt, venti se­quentur. Arist. prob. Sect. 26. Qu. 25. Elap­sing of the starres may portend tempe­stuous events. As 'tis no bright day wherein the Sun does not shine, so that night is dark, wherein no starre appear­eth. And when no sunne, nor starres, day or night appeared, no small Tempest lay upon us, Act. 27. 20. As it should be the sorrow of our souls not to see the Sunne of the Gospel to shine in the day, so should it be our grief when there is no starre ippearance of God in the night; during the day-time, and while we are awake, t'is good to walk in the warm beams of the Gospel-sunne, to wait at the gates of wisdomes house, convers­ing with others, to exercise our selves in all Evangelicall ordinances, as was the practise of the primitive Christians. They continued stedfast in the Apostles doctrine, and fellowship in breaking of [Page 343] bread, and in prayer, Act. 2. But in the night season, and when we are asleep, we are unfit for such perform­ances, yet then are the proper times for soul-converse with God in this hid­den way of holy Dreames.

2. The light of these starrs may lead to the sunne, 'tis observable, 'twas a starre that guided the wise men to Bethlehem, where Christ was born.Ecce Dionaei praecessit Cae­saris astrum Virgil. We have seen (say they) his starre in the East, and are come to worship him, Mat. 2. As false Dreames from the Devill do dispose men to desert, and forsake Gods publike service, and the wonted wayes of his worship: So true Dreames from God doe encline Christi­ans to close with, and keep to all Gos­pel-ordinances. Yea these motions having been first in the night, they may be the more apt to religious actings all the day after.

3. In good Dreames may be more then the light of a starre, even Christ the Son of Righteousnesse may shine therein. God himself as the most glo­rious Son may therein breake out with the brightest beames. Some of Gods [Page 344] Saints can safely say, that when all the day hath been dark, their hearts as the Heavens covered with clouds, thick and black, yet God as a Sunne of mer­cy hath arose at midnight and shined full faire in their face, If I say, surely the darknesse shall cover me, even the night shall be light about me; darknesse hideth not from thee, but the night shines as the day. For thou hast possessed my reines, Psal. 139. 11, 12. God may suspend mercy by day, and dispatch aDe Deo cessan­te & requies­ [...]e [...]te ab operi­bus suis. Lege August. de Gen. ad lit. lib. 4. pag. 125. sweet message by night. 'Tis well ob­served, how God himself was once said to rest from his works in the day: But God hath night-works from which we never read of his rest. God hath in the night-season towards his servants cer­tain works, as for their protection from evill, so for direction in good; as for their guiding to duty, so for the giv­ing out of his mercy. God while we sleep, may be so awake in his merci­full works, and may bring in such a cleere light of his love, while we lie on our beds, as to turne night into day: as by the withdrawing the light of his love, the brightest day is made like the [Page 345] darkest night. We grant Gods usuallƲbi (que) aucupe­mur verbum Dei de omnium fidelium Mi­nistrorum ore pende amus, Pauli [...]us, Ep. 4. Deus dupliciter cum hominibus loquitur, primo, communiter per publicum Mi­nisterium—se­cundo per reve­lationem inter­nam, sed hoc posterius tan­tum solet in spe­cialibus negotiis & rarissime nosse [...]tile est ne amisso verbo cum phanaticis expectemus mo­vas revelatio­nes. meanes for the discovery of mercy is by a Gospel-ministery, his ordinary way is the word preached by the mouths of faithfull men. I create the fruit of the lips, peace, peace, Isai. 57. 17. So that all people ought primarily and principally to wait hereupon, and espe­cially to expect God herein: yet God may sometimes so speak in Dreames, as manifesting to men much of his merci­full mind about matters the same, Of this it is sure (saies Luther) all ought to beware they do not neglect Gospel-ad­ministrations, to look for revelations by Dreames. Though yet God in Dreams hath sometimes so revealed himself as hath been certainly, and sensibly a singular mercy to the souls of some men.

7. Object. Dreames though thus theyObject. 7. be good, yet they may so break in, as to make our sleep to be short.

Answer. 1. To have sleep shortAnswer. may be best for our benefit; there is a double sleep may do us much prejudice,

  • Unseasonable,
  • Immeasurable.

[Page 346]1. Sleep unseasonvble, some by such sleep turn day into night, as some by their watchfulnesse make night to be day. ▪Tis reeported of the primitive Chaistians, in hearing Paul▪ preach, they watched till midnight, Act. 20. 7. They (saies Chrysostom) watching Media nocte vi­gilabant, ut eos condemnent qui media Die dor­miunt. till mid night, condemned those who sleep till mid-day. Yea sometime, though the season be night, it may be unseasonable to sleep, as we may see by our Saviours censure of his Disciples, Matth. 26. 40. When ever Christ calls to service, then 'tis out of season for his servants to sleep. How sad is it with some, who no further observe the Sabbatb-Day-Rest, than by a lazy, drowzy, lying in bed. But let not men look for good Dreames in bad sleeps.

2. Sleep immeasurable may prejudice men in this matter. How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard, when wilt thou a­rise out of thy sleep! Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep, Prov. 6. 9, 10. Some though they have had their severall long steps, yet they must have their slumbers; [sleeps, and slumbers] in [Page 347] the plurall, so Solomon reads the preci­ted place. Good men will not waste whole nights in long sleeps. How oft did David interrupt his sleep, and how well did his heart work by night! Dio­dat observes upon Psal. 143. 8. Cause me to heare thy loving kindnesse in the morning, that I may know the way wherein I should walk. That in theIlle pro ro­gans pernoctabat ut [...]u disceres quomodo pro te rogares; Ambr. in Psal. 119. night time his prayer was to God, for guidance in the day. How did our deare Saviour passe whole nights in prayer, Matth. 26. 44. Herein pro­posing a pattern for Christians at least in extraordinary occasions, as some have concluded. But O, how even some Heathens condemn us Christians, Alex­ander Caesar, and severall others are said to divide the night into three parts, whereof one only for sleep, the otherNemo est dignus nomine hominis qui u­num diem velit esse in volunta­te, Tul. l. 2. definibus. two for their studies, and other necessary affaires. As Tully professed, he was not worthy the name of a man, that spent a whole day in pleasure. So is not he worthy the name of a Christian, that spends the whole night in sleeping. Upon such, in their besotted sleeps, God may rather send judgements, then mer­cies. [Page 348] Epimanondas a Theban captaine, finding in the night a Sentinell asleep, struck him through with his speare, say­ing;Talem reliqui, qualem inveni. lege Laert. lib. de vit. Philosophorum. I leave thee, as I found thee. A­ristotle in the night, holding his Book in one hand, is said in the other hand to hold a golden Ball over a brazen pan, that sleeping, the fall thereof might a­wake him. Such will hardly Dreame what they should, who sleep when they should not.

2. Answer. Short sleeps may be best for good Dreames. In a long sleep may a heavenly Dreame dye and be buried, so as never to rise or come up in remem­brance but like Nebuchadnezzars Dan. 2. 7. Jun. lectiones in loc. Dreame be quite gone and forgotten. But when a man suddenly awakes, he the sooner reflects, and re-views o­ver what he thought in his sleep. And all things thus received, the Dreame is revived, so that in the mind matters are more readily setled being more easily recalled. By a long sleep after a good Dreame, the foot-steps of God may be lost, and little recoverable left. 'Tis good for Christians upon severall accounts [Page 349] to be sooner wakefull, then sleepy.Somnus, ut ex Aristotele dis­putat Averro­res, accidit propter frigi­dum, & humi­dum quae domi­nantur in cere­bro vigilia vero propter calidum & siccum domi­nantia in corde-Nolite mei fra­tres in religione esse frigidi & humoribus de­diti,—sed ani­mam possidete igneo zelo fer­ventem, ut s [...] media nocte sponsus adve­nerit vobis ad intrandum cum eo gratia non denegetur, &c. Sleep (saies the Philosopher) is caus­ed and encreased, as cold and moist are more or lesse predominant in the braine. And the more heat pre­vailes in the heart, the more apt is man to awake▪ Is it not our cold­nesse in the cause of God, that makes us so exceedingly sleepy? Had we more holy heate in our hearts, we should be the more quickly awake to mind God in his work.

3. Answer. But yet a good Dreame may not make mans sleep to be short. Upon this the Lord may dilate sleep, not letting man to awake till his work be done. God may prolong the sleep of a good man to take in the more of his mind. What a long sleep had Solomon, because therein God had much to say by a Dreame, 1 King. 3. from the 5, to the 15. ver.

8. Object. Sleep is appointed for8. Object. our rest, and necessary refreshment, but Dreames though good, may much di­sturb, and trouble our sleep, &c.

Answer. To this I shall speak in aAnswer. double way.

Concession] 1. We will grant with Omnia necesse est vel vi vel natura quiesce­re, Arist. de Caelo, l. 3. c. 2. Arist. Ethic l. 4. c. 15. Bern. Sup. Cant. Ser. 19. Hic quietis gustus suavis. Authors of all sorts▪ that rest is re­quisite, and that the sleep of the night is for the refreshment of nature. Cicero reports of Cn. Aufidius, that he was wont to say. We might think sleep to be given us against Somnium no­bis nisi requie­tem corporibus & medicinam quandam labo­ris affert con­tra naturam putaremus da­tum, &c. Cicero de finibus bono­rum, l. 5. p. 154. nature, it so deprives us of our senshs, &c. but that we sensibly find our selves thereby sweetly refreshed, as with a me­dicinable cordiall.

2. We may grant some divine Dreames do disturb sleep, and may molest the mind, and interrupt mens rest, as precited Scriptures report, Gen. 15. 12. Dan. 7, 8, 10, Chap. Yet be it so, 'tis better in sleep to be somewhat troubled with molest­ing Dreames from God, then sinne­fully tickled with enticing and sedu­cing Dreames from the Devill. The Devill may make a mans Dreames to be like Lots Daughters, that in the night gave him wine to drink, but drew him to sinnefull and sad evils: so Satan may to the mind of a sleep­ing [Page 351] man administer much pleasant mat­ters: but the most disturbing Dreams from God be abundantly better.

2. Negation] Dreames from God may make the heart glad, refresh the mind, and make sleep sweet to the whole man, and behold my sleep was sweet unto me, saies the Prophet, hav­ing had a Dreame from God of the Churches happy estate in the world, Jer. 31. 26. Thou shalt lye down, and thy sleep shall be sweet, Prov. 3. 24. This is fulfilled in that comforta­bleIn nocte iniquus conteritur, quum peccatorum prae­cedentium con­fusione damna­tus veritatis lu­mennon invenit, & quod dein­ceps agere de­beat non agno­scit—Greg. Mor. l. 25. c. 9. converse God hath with the soules of his Saints in their sleep. Wicked men who have stood up stoutly in the day, God hath tumb­led, and overturned with terrours in the night, Job 34. Chap. 25. Ver. On the other side, some of Gods Saints who have been down in the deeps of sorrows all day, the Lord hath lifted them up by heart-glad­ding-comforts in the night; And God spake to Israel in a Dreame by night, saying, Jacob, Jacob, I am God, the God of thy father; Feare not to goe down into Egypt, I will [Page 352] go with thee, and I will bring thee up a­gain, Gen. 46. 2, 3. Much to this purpose, see that great Apostle. There stood by me this night, the An­gell of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, saying; feare not Paul, be of good cheere, God hath given thee all that saile with thee, Acts 27. 26. O the heart-ravishing cups of com­fort that God sometimes brings down for his Saints to drink in in the dark; yea, O how sometimes by soul-sola­cing Dreames are their hearts drawn up into Heaven!

Luther speaking of the Soul of aAnima post dis­cessum a corpo­re non dormit, sed vigilat & patitur visiones loquelas Angel­lorum & Dei. Luther loc. 59. 3a. clas. Saint, separated from the body by death, saies; That it sleeps not, but is ever awake, walks in Heaven, heares the language of Angels, sees the visions of God, &c. The same in some measure may be said of such a Soul, while united to the body in this life. It sleeps not, but being ever awake, it even in the night-season ascends up into Heaven, and sees the face of God, and sings the praises of Christ. So that we may say of a Saints sleep in [Page 353] this case, as Austin once said ofO So [...]ium pa­cis quam dul­ce & jucundum qui inter lapi­des inimicorum dormivit. Au­gust. Serm. de Diver. Stevens sleep martyred among the stones; O sleep of peace, how plea­sant and full of delight!

Quest. May not the Devils deluding Dreames have many delighting joys?

Answ. Suppose so, yet the joys of Divine Dreames are farre differing, and may be discerned, by

  • Antecedent preparations, &
  • Consequent inclinations.

1. Before a Christian is penitentially prepared by afflictings of Soul, and af­frightings for sinne, deep humblings, and day-tremblings, under sense of Gods wrath, &c. then by night God may re­present to the mind, his marvellous mer­ciesS [...]mnia jucun­da & l [...]t [...] imo in rebus civili­bus nos solent ex [...]i [...]rare, &c. Lu [...] [...]. com. 1ae classis. De An [...]lis. [...]t in spi [...]itualilus [...]uod in multo magis. in the Covenant of grace, his fa­vour upon the account of Christ, pardon of sinne, to the singular joy of the Soul.

2. After a Christian is graciously en­clined, his spirit disposed to the advancing of God, the abasing himself, the oppo­sing of sin, the pursuing holiness of life, and the like: Such joys in Dreames, are more then Dreames of joy. One well observeth, That all the Devils [Page 354] pleasing power, it's placed in deludingT [...]tam—Vim [...]am in menda­c [...]is Diab [...]lus coll [...]avit om­nia dec [...]ptio­ [...]m genera de d [...] hoc venena­tissi [...] a [...]is suae s [...]n [...] pr [...]d [...]xit. L [...]o [...]e El [...]mo­sin. Serm. 4. lies; He delights to delude, and he de­ludes in his delights; He rejoyces to deceive men, and he deceives men in their rejoycings. Their joys in Dreams be but Dreames of joy. They seem to solace, but they do not solace as they seem. Be such delusive joys examined by things before or after? they may be found very vain, as in the causes, so in their essects; whereas the virtuous vigour of true joys that are in and through Dreames Divine, we may soon discern, as by their good causes, so by their excellent effects, viz.

  • They engage to truth, &
  • They enlarge our strength.

1. To truth: our hearts are hereby engaged, obliged, more bent and bound to truth-embracements. Such a Byas set upon our souls, as may carry us the more strait on, in obedience to the strict [...]st truths contained in ho­ly Scriptures. Yea, we are taught not only to retain the truth, but to rejoyce in the truth, through the truth of joy. Whereas false joys, that proceed in and through delusive Dreames, leave [Page 355] mens minds loose, for the letting in most lamentable errors: So, that the saving truths of God in the Gospel, are the sooner very sadly deserted.

2. In strength: our hearts are here­by enlarged, encreased. Nehem. 8. 10. The joy of the Lord is our strength. Such joys as God sends in sleeping, or wake­ing, they strengthen with much spiri­al might our inward man, making us the more apt and able to the holiest duties, and for the heaviest Philippus Landsgravus de Hessia, qu [...]mo­dò tam mala. Patienter pas­sus, interroga­tus—resonde­bat, se divinas Martyrum consolationes sensisse, & cor­roborasse Manlius. difficul­ties, that may severall waies be set be­fore us; Whereas false joys from Dreames delusive, do rather debili­tate, enfeeble, and weaken mans soul, as to hard service or suffering. Thus rightly to discriminate these, is a lesson very well worth our learning. Yea: and let us learn likewise, not only how to perceive and discern, but how to re­eive and maintain: not only Dreames reall and truly right for delights, but also the most rare and ravishing Dreams that can come from Heaven upon our hearts.

For the more constant compassing of such high night-comforts, we ought through [Page 356] our whole daily walkings,

  • To beware, &
  • To be wise.

1. Beware of walking from the set­led counsels of God. Take heed of turning aside to seek uncertain waies, to look for new Revelations, and so forsake the antient Tracts, and leave the long beaten paths of Bible-truths: least we not only prevent from our selves such caelestial sweets, but on the contrary, procure to our selves the sowrest draughts, that our minds can drink day or night. May not we con­curre with Cassianus. col. 24. cap. 24. Qui viam regi­am Apostoli [...]is & Propheticis silicibu [...] c [...]m­munitam San­ctorum omnium a [...]que ipsi [...]s Do [...]i [...]i v [...]sti­giis c [...]mpl [...] ­tam cla [...]a die deserentes per d [...]ia qu [...]que & dumosa la­cerati [...] auribus & dirupta [...]st [...] reptant n [...]n m [...] ­d [...] acutis [...] veprium a [...]le­is con [...]igenai, se [...] e [...]am viru­ [...]entorum ser­ [...]entum ictibus vulnerandi, &c. Cassian, and confidently conclude: That those Christians, who during the clear day, do deviate from Gods wonted waies, from Christs the Kings known rode in his Word, paved with Propheticall flints, and Apostolicall stones, and made plain by the foot­steps of all the foregoing Saints, yea, and the Lord himself: to seek out un­known waies, and to wander into briery and bushy paths, may look to lie down at night with legs all scratched, garments torn: with souls full of sores, such wounds and wofull stings, as will [Page 357] not well suffer them to sleep. Excuse me good Christians, if again and again, I give this Caution; lest men make a wrong Use of this requisite Subject, in our monstrously mistaking season.

2. Be wise to walk in the most cer­tain comforts of God. We may find that this is without doubt our daily du­ty, not only to walk in the fear of the Lord, but likewise to walk in the com­forts of the Holy Ghost, Acts 9. 31.Heus Dominè Deus, rara ho­ra, brevis mora, sapit quidem suavissimè sed gustatur ra­rissime, &c. This for pious persons, is possible, though indeed so difficult, that with Bernard the best may say, Such soul­solacing daies and houres are very rare and sweet, though very seldome and short.

Yet without question, good care might carry us in, and keep us to farre more continued waies of comfort, than in which commonly Christians are found. Were we so exact as we ought, might not we make even our extraordi­nary comforts, our much more ordi­nary Walks? Sure, we are not only to take some steps into spiritual com­forts, but we are to take up our daily walks in the comforts of the Spirit. [Page 358] And if we thus walk into these comforts while awake, what walks may such comforts have into us when asleep? If we in our more constant course could converse with God, by the most rejoy­cing thoughts in the day, would not God have a more frequent converse with us by most refreshing Dreames from Heaven in the night?

Did but we afore-hand accustom our selves to be with rejoycings of soul in the service of the Lord, how afterward might we meet with that of God, which now, to the most of men▪ remains aPost multas la­chrymas—Post caeli inhae­rentes animi oculos videbar mihi interesse agminibus An­gelorum, &c. Hieron. in lib. de virginita. Serv. mystery? Jerome reports, that af­ter some most affectionate and fervent performance of some holy duties, as Meditation and Prayer, he had some­times seemed to himself, as if he had been caught up into Heaven, and had been triumphing with Troops of An­gels, &c. Thus may a good man, even after a comfortable intercourse with God in religious exercises, be by night in a Dreame, as if drawn up into Hea­ven: as if he heard those Hallelujahs and sweet singings of Angels, as if he saw the bright and beautifull Body [Page 359] of his blessed Saviour, sitting at the right hand of God, &c. To come out of such a Dream, is to come out of Heaven; O how happy would it be herein to abide! O how blessed and comfortable is the case of that Christian, who from per­sonall experiance can hereof make re­port! To such a purpose some Anti­ent Authors Chrysost. Homil. 54. in Genes. Augusti. Sermo 79. De tempore, &c. do excellently open Jacob's Dream, Gen. 28. Let us chiefly marke what the Scripture speaks: Jacob dreamed, and behold a Ladder lifted up, and the top of it reach­ed to Heaven, and behold upon it the An­gels of God ascending and descending. And above he saw the Lord himself.Malè cubans Suaviter dor­mit & [...]eliciter Somniat Ja­cob, &c. Pa [...]aus in lo­cum. standing, and heard him speaking such sweet words, and in such a way, as so well warmed his heart, that awaking he break out; Surely the Lord was in this place; this is none other than the House of God; this is the Gate of Heaven. Nunc Jacob ad fae [...]arum in­ [...]ursu [...] e [...]p [...]si­tus, & [...]xi­u [...] omnibus cae­li terrequae in­juri [...]Domi­nus e [...]us [...] lestias somnio vel oraculo praeclaro miri­sicè sublevat—Deus signum sui amoris in­sculpsit animo servi—ut vigi­lans, &c. Calvin in loc. Some of our more Modern Writers, do also much admire this Dream, in the season and subject of it, for the expres­sions and impressions of it. That Ja­cob lying now obnoxious to all the [Page 360] injuries of Earth and Heaven, God did graciously relieve him in a Dream, that left such legible letters of love, and visible Characters of Divine care, as in sleep to receive them was exceed­ing sweet; and awake to review them was very comfortable.

Neither let us think in these latter Times, the Lord to be lesser in his love, and lower in his care over af­flicted Christians, but rather let us believe, that as the Devill in these latter daies, hath not only the same, but hath subtiller projects, and soarer conflicts to assault Gods Saints: So God certainly, hath now not only the same, but hath stronger supports, sweeter and greater comforts for the sensible asistance of his Saints op­pressed.Quanto magis potestas & ca­liditas Diaboli derescunt in in tempore: tanto magis augescunt in malignitate & subtilitate. The policy and power of the Devill, as they more decrease in time, so they more encrease in their measure. The Devill, when his time is most short, his temptations will be most sharp. And when the temp­tations of the Devill be the sharp­est, then the Consolations of God shall be the sweetest, for the su­table [Page 361] and seasonable solacing the Souls of his Saints, whether their Bodies be awake or asleepe.


A POSTSCRIPT TO THE READER. OR, The Authors EPILOG, In Some concluding Requests.

Christian Reader,

I Crave yet once more, and do (the praeceeding Treatise considered) from my whole soul, most seriously beseech the actual concurrence of

  • Thy Piety, &
  • Thy Charity.

1. Thy Piety, in most earnest Prayer to Almighty God, as graciously to pardon in the precious Blood of Christ, those ma­ny humane frailties, which therein both [Page] God and Man may easily find, and I confess: So successfully to prosper by his abundant blessing, my true endeavours therein, for the Gospel of his great Name, and the reall good of souls.

2. Thy Charity, in a candid inter­preting, and right understanding, both of the Author and Matter, notwithstanding the accidentall errors of the Press.

The Printer, in his Composings and passings through the main Body of the Book, hath left great Faults but Few: yet too many lesser, in literall and syllabi­call mistakes, with many misplaced Commas, &c. All which, as by thy due Observings, thou maist soon find them: So, by thy right Correctings, thou art de­sired friendly to mend them.


Page 55. line 26. for Dreames read Dreamers. p. 71. l. 20. for Suedland r. S [...]abland. p 77. l. 6. for wa­ring r. warming. p. 69. l. 19. for strange r. strong. p. 113. l. 15. for at r. in. p. 135. l. 13. for provision r. praevision. p. 163. l. 9. for new r. Mens. p. 152. l. 12. for as condition r. his condition. p. 242. l. 21. for Chamber r. Chair. p 271. l. 21. for Nations r. Motions. p. 286. l. 28. for surely r. sweetly. p. 296. l. 12. at sleep, make a full stop. p. 303. l. 13. for Saints r. same. p. 304. l. 18. for as r. so. In the same line, for accept in r. accept us in. p. 34. l. 16. for words r. wood. With others such like.

[Page] In the Margin all Quotations may be manifest mistakes, in the mis-naming of some Authors, and the mis-noting of some Numbers of their Pages, in their men­tioned Writings: besides severall other [...] and Errata's, especially in the Greek and Latin. All which the Learn­ed Reader is likewise earnestly entreated, as kindly to excuse, and courteously to correct: So notwithstanding, rightly to receive, and to accept, &c.


Pagina 34. pro target lege torquet. p. 56. pro lit iam l. licentiam. p. 34. pro ineo r. imo, &c. p. 38. pro ineam l. etiam. p. 27. pro [...]. l. [...]. p. 50. pro [...] l. [...]. p. 121. pro [...] l. [...], &c. p. 232. pro [...] l. [...]. p. 150. pro decen l. decem. p. 284. pro uqae l. quae nec. p. 334. pro aptis parentibus l. apparentibus. p. 343. pro dooet l. doeet. p. 312. pro pretium l. Aretium. Et similia.

And now (good Reader) that good hand of our most gracious and all-glo­rious God, rectifie, and fully reform farre worse Errors, (or those broader and blacker Blemishe) found in the most lamentably mis-carried leaves of our lives: And our infinitely good Lord, [Page] with the indeleble Characters of his hea­venly Grace, ingrave, and imprint the most precious and permanent Truths upon the Tables of our hearts, unto his own deserved Honour, and to our Eternal Happiness. Amen.

Thine in the Lord,
P. G.

AN ALPHABETICAL TABLE: OR A DIRECTORY, BY The Order of Letters, Leading To Some Chief Things found In The foregoing Treatise.

  • A Bell, what the name no­teth p. 171
  • Actings of man of two sorts p. 166
  • Adam, what God appointed him for to [Page] do in Paradise p. 78
  • Adam considered in a double estate p. 362
  • Adiaphora, or middle matters, how far to be granted p. 263
  • Afflictions, how made easie p. 196
  • Ages of the world, how many p. 262
  • Angels their Ministry, what p. 272
  • Angels their chief help, when p. 320
  • Anabaptists, whence their first origi­nal p. 32
  • Anabaptists, how dangerous in their principles and practises p. 33
  • Anabaptists, the chief opposers of Ma­gestracy and Ministry p. 36
  • Anabaptists in Germany, their reign and their ruine p. 38
  • Antidots against pride, what p. 44
  • Altar of Apollo, how frequented p. 30
  • Alexander, how encouraged to Battell p. 62
  • Apollidorus, what a Tyrant p. 228
  • Artaxerxes, how idly he spent time p. 188
  • Articles of Faith, how revealed p. 269
  • Articles of Faith, what and how to be embraced p. 335
  • Arrogancy, how great a sinne p. 326
  • [Page] Atheism, how abhominable p. 44
  • Augustine, what sinnes in youth p. 96
  • Babes of the Devil, how dressed p. 42
  • Baptism of Infants, by whom most op­posed p. 71
  • Baptism of Infants, how long maintain­ed p. 281
  • Balam, the Divine Visions he had p. 250
  • Basill, how good a man he was p. 288
  • Bible, how much to be read p. 296
  • Birds, where they usually build p. 173
  • Body of man, how full of beauty. p. 15
  • Body, how much defiled by sin p. 100
  • Body, how after this life said to sleep p. 89
  • Books bad, what hurt they do p. 50
  • Breaches, how great an evil p. 233
  • Bruits, how said to Dream p. 17
  • Calumnies, what, and by whom raised p. 327
  • Capacities, of what kind given to [Page] creatures p. 19
  • Cares, of what kind required of Chri­stians p. 148
  • Christian, who is indeed p. 333
  • Chrysostome, what Text he would choose to preach of p. 190
  • Children, how vexed p. 216
  • Church, how compared p. 177
  • Cleomenes, his falsehood p. 134
  • Confidenee men have of themselves, how great and groundless p. 51
  • Company with vain persons, how bad p. 189
  • Comforts from Scripture, how sweet p. 172
  • Courts in which all may be accused, two­fold p. 131
  • Creatures, how they deceive man p. 207
  • Cruelties, in what men worst p. 328
  • Cyprian, what he reports remarkeable in his times p. 322
  • Daemocles, how sitting in his Chair p. 242
  • Darkness not created of God. p. 211
  • [Page] Darkness pleasing to the Devil p. 100
  • Darkness affrighting to man p. 210
  • Deceits of two sorts p. 53
  • Deceivers of severall sorts p. 48
  • Defiling, only by sinne p. 103
  • Delights carnall, their ill Eeffects p. 226
  • Delights in God, how good p. 310
  • Desires covetous, how bad p. 226
  • Desires in the Devil of two sorts p. 214
  • Devil, how described p. 28
  • Devil, how large a knowledg p. 64
  • Devil, how great a power p. 50
  • Domestick duties, how neglected p. 325
  • Domition, how he spent his time p. 187
  • Donatists, how they condemned Austin p. 51
  • Duty neglected, what a sin p. 177
  • Emanuel, how good a word p. 68
  • England, how apt to Errors p. 36
  • Elenor, Wife of King Edward p. 112
  • Errors compared to chaff p. 42
  • Errors of the last times, worst p. 71
  • Errors, all prone thereto p. 210
  • Evils of two sorts p. 202
  • Evils of sin, worst p. 203
  • [Page] Evils of sin, how to be shunned p. 124
  • Excellent things but few found p. 325
  • Examples good commended p. 335
  • Extasies bad discovered p. 31
  • Faith, how excellent a grace p. 229
  • Faith, every man must have of his own p. 181
  • Families, how to be instructed p. 325
  • Favour of God much to be desired p. 213
  • Fear of God, upholds Gods Throne p. 163
  • Fear of God, Unites mans heart p. 180
  • Fear of men forbidden p. 179
  • Fancy, how strong in working p. 120
  • Filthyness of men two-fold p. 95
  • Flesh in man, the fountain of sinne p. 101
  • Fire two waies put out p. 334
  • Fort-Royal of Christian Religion p. 324
  • Freedom for thoughts a mistake p. 104
  • [Page] Fury in man, how a sinne p. 334
  • Gastio, his Book against the Anabap­tists p. 33
  • Geneva, how preserved by Beza p. 281
  • Gentiles, what knowledg some had of Christ. p. 249
  • Germany's troubles, what and whence p. 72
  • Gifts of Gods love, how sweet p. 240
  • God, that he is, men commonly be­lieve p. 215
  • God is the best Friend and worst Ene­my p. 205
  • God not the Authour of any sinne p. 203
  • God the Fountain of all good p. 6
  • Gospel-Sacrifices most excellent p. 193
  • Gospel-Discoveries most clear p. 338
  • Graces, how some counterfeit p. 83
  • Graces, when most visible p. 289
  • Grace, how excelling Nature p. 202
  • Greek tongue excellent p. 297
  • [Page]Habel, what the word singnifieth p. 193
  • Hands proper only to man p. 187
  • Harlots, their property p. 145
  • Hatred of good men, how bad p. 326
  • Haters of good men, who worst p. 328
  • Heresie, what and how described p. 327
  • Hereticks, who, and how to be used p. 239
  • Herod, how cunning and cruel p. 254
  • Heart gracious, how excellent p. 275
  • Heart, how carefully to be kept p. 175
  • Holiness of life, how laudable p. 230
  • Horror, whence it ariseth p. 210
  • Hypocrites, how great sinners p. 254
  • Hypocrisie, how abhorred of God p. 255
  • Hypocrates, how rare a Physician p. 224
  • [Page]Jaddus the High Priest, how cloathed p. 279
  • Idle persons like Drone-bees p. 186
  • Jedidiah, what it signifieth p. 240
  • Jealousie, whence it ariseth p. 153
  • Jerome, how in Prayer transported p. 354
  • Jews had God divers waies discover­ed p. 264
  • Jews, how great their incredulity p. 261
  • Ignorance, how gross in men p. 50
  • Ignorance, the evils thereof to men p. 234
  • Images, when first set up in the Church p. 140
  • Images oft set up in mens hearts p. 185
  • Immortality of mans soul proved p. 284
  • Incubi and Succubi, how to be believed p. 114
  • Innocent Infants, by whom, and why slain p. 259
  • Joys true and false how diffe­renced [Page] p. 355
  • Israelites, how they received Manna p. 300
  • Kings, how of God preserved p. 274
  • Kings, how with cares oppressed p. 253
  • Kingdoms, how by wrong obtained p. 254
  • Kingdoms, how from one to another translated p. 62
  • Knowledg intuitive God hath only p. 111
  • Knowledg of mans soul difficult p. 24
  • Knowledg in humane Arts excellent p. 249
  • Knowledg Divine, how much required p. 124
  • Knowledg by Satan much opposed p. 121
  • Law of God, how transgressed p. 123
  • Law of God fit for Meditation p. 297
  • Learning, how to be esteemed p. 249
  • Life of man, how compared p. 156
  • [Page] Life of man, how shortned p. 131
  • Light of Scripture, how admirable p. 23
  • Light of Gods countenance comfortable p. 231
  • Light of a quiet conscience, desirable p. 232
  • Leviathan, what, and when best taken p. 126
  • Lodging, what it importeth p. 161
  • Lords-Day, by whom neglected p. 324
  • Lord like a Lyon, how sad p. 205
  • Love, how excelling fear p. 201
  • Love to truth, how requisite p. 76
  • Lives of good men much to be viewed p. 327
  • Lucian, how bad a man declared p. 328
  • Luther's Doctrine, by whom condemn­ed p. 33
  • Luther's Question oft to himself p. 52
  • Lycurgus, what a Law he made p. 138
  • Lycanthropie, what a sad disease p. 224
  • Lyes, by whom ordinarily raised p. 327
  • Magi, what the word signifieth p. 249
  • [Page] Magicians of Aegypt, what they did p. 40
  • Magistracy, by whom opposed p. 56
  • Majesty of God, how great p. 208
  • Man, a person compounded p. 4, 5
  • Man excelling other creatures p. 187
  • Manichees, their opinion p. 14
  • Manna, what a mercy to the Jews p. 300
  • Meanes, how to be used p. 177
  • Mercies, how to be prized p. 183
  • Meditation of God, how good p. 128
  • Misery of man, how great p. 209
  • Memory, how necessary p. 128
  • Ministers, by whom opposed p. 324
  • Miracles, true and false differenced p. 47
  • Moses among the Prophets, how excel­lent p. 262
  • Mortification of sinne, how necessary p. 137
  • Muncer, what a seducer p. 33
  • Mysterium, what the word signifies p. 2
  • Nature of man defiled with sin p. 103
  • [Page] Nature, all men alike miserable p. 172
  • Nebuchadnezar, how great a Prince p. 222
  • Nebuchadnezar, how living among Beasts p. 224
  • Nero, how he killed his Mother p. 132
  • Nescience and ignorance, how they dif­fer p. 21
  • Neglects of good, how dangerous p. 177
  • Nocturnall-polutions, how perillous p. 92
  • Nourishing of sinne, how odious p. 81
  • Obedience to God, how just p. 211
  • Observation of God, how fit p. 313
  • Onenesse of heart, how good p. 180
  • Onenesse of way, how meet p. 355
  • Opinions, some how abhominable p. 71
  • Oracles, how once used p. 256
  • Oracles, when they ceased p. 31
  • Organs given to man excellent p. 167
  • Original sinne, how certain p. 55
  • [Page] Original sinne, how active p. 183
  • Outward actions follow inward moti­ons p. 166
  • Pardoning power in God, how great p. 116
  • Pardoning sinne, God thereto very prompt p. 44
  • Peace false, by the Devil furthered p. 215
  • Peace sound, through God setled p. 219
  • Phantasie and Memory, their differing acts p. 11
  • Philosophers of two differing sorts p. 34
  • Philo, of what men he complained p. 325
  • Philo, what of man he affirmed p. 252
  • Philpots Judgment about Infant-Bap­tism declared p. 281
  • Plato, reading the Books of Moses p. 249
  • Places, two after this life p. 8, 9
  • Policarpus, how warned of death p. 282
  • [Page] Prayer in the heart, how prevalent p. 257
  • Prayer with fervency, how efficacious p. 136
  • Preaching, of how great use p. 338
  • Pride, how prone man to it p. 45
  • Prosopopeia, what and how used p. 329
  • Prudence, wherein it consisteth p. 195
  • Publican and Pharisee, how differanced p. 322
  • Quenching the Spirit, how caused p. 334
  • Questions idle, by whom raised p. 324
  • Quietness of conscience, how distur­bed p. 205
  • Raptures, how therein men mistaken p 324
  • Reason in man, how excellent p. 5, 6
  • Reason in man, when active p. 6, 7
  • Reason, how fitly compared p. 194
  • Reason, how often seduced p. 192
  • Remembrance of God, how good p. 128
  • Repentance for sin, how necessary p. 119
  • [Page] Repletions with grace, how excellent p. 333
  • Revelations from God, how described p. 329
  • Revelations false, how discovered p. 323
  • Richard the third, how slain p. 225
  • Rome, who friends thereunto p. 328
  • Rubie, how precious a stone p. 289
  • Sabbath to be kept by Christians p. 324
  • Saorifices, what under the Gospel p. 193
  • Scorpion, what the Name signifieth p. 232
  • Scorpions, what their properties are p. 243
  • Scriptures, by whom perverted p. 325
  • Simon, what the Name importeth p. 32
  • Sinne, what evils it implyeth p. 106
  • Sinnes of severall sorts considered p. 81
  • Seducers, how sedulous and subtill p. 311
  • Satan, how cunning and cruell p. 210
  • Skarring, what the word signifieth p. 199
  • [Page] Sleep, by what means caused p. 222
  • Sleep quiet, what a mercy p. 240
  • Sleep quiet, how procured p. 230
  • Sodomites, how great sinners p. 89
  • Solomon, how rare a person p. 151
  • Souls activeness, how discovered p. 185
  • Souls dignity, how preserved p. 20
  • Starres, their excellent use p. 339
  • Starre leading to Christ, what p. 250
  • Spira, his sad case discovered p. 227
  • Sunne, its excellency advanced p. 219
  • Sufferings upon man inflicted p. 233
  • Sybils of Greece, what they were de­clared p. 30
  • Temple of the Holy Ghost, what p. 140
  • Tempests, how farre of the Devil p. 212
  • Temptations of severall sorts p. 214
  • Telmisenses, their opinion p. 35
  • Tertullian, his Apologies for whom p. 158
  • Thankfulness, how due to God p. 144
  • Themistocles, what kind of man p. 293
  • Thoughts are secret words p. 168
  • [Page] Thoughts in man of three sorrs p. 159
  • Thoughts naturally only evil p. 180
  • Thoughts, all known to God p. 196
  • Thunder, how it is caused p. 212
  • Truth, how much deserted p. 352
  • Truth, all ought to be loved p. 77
  • Time, all is Gods and for God p. 286
  • Time, how well divided p. 53
  • Time, how much abused p. 188
  • Tyrants, their ill properties p. 259
  • Vanity, what the word signifieth p. 154
  • Vanities, how divers in man p. 150
  • Vanity, how it debaseth a man p. 188
  • Voice of God in Scripture sure p. 351
  • Voice, audible from God in crosses p. 188
  • Vineyard, what to be kept p. 177
  • Unity of heart, how good p. 180
  • Unity among the Devils, how great p. 49
  • Union with Christ, how sure and sweet p. 30
  • Virtue Theologicall, what p. 201
  • [Page] Virtue, how it advanceth a man p. 188
  • Visions of three sorts declared p. 266
  • Visions, true from false discovered p. 323
  • Walking, what of Christians required p. 339
  • Wandering from Gods Word condemn­ed ibid.
  • Watching, why to Christians command­ed p. 188
  • Warring with the flesh continued ibid.
  • Woman hearkening to the Serpent p. 192
  • Will of God, how opposed p. 331
  • Wolfe, how ravenous a Beast p. 135
  • Word of God, how transgressed p. 211
  • Word of God, how compared p. 41
  • Word of God, how preferred p. 326
  • Wicked, how described p. 191
  • Witches, how seduced p 61
  • Wisdom, why to be desired p. 211
  • Work of a Chaistian, what chiefest p. 174
  • Wounds, of what sort are saddest p. 131
  • [Page]Xerxes, at what he rejoyced p. 293
  • Xenophon, what he denied p. 380
  • Young men, their lusts p. 117
  • Young men, their conceits p. 52
  • Zeal, its want bewailed p. 339
  • Zeal, by whom opposed p. 321
  • Zwinglius, what he practised p. 33

THE SCRIPTURE-TABLE, OR A CATALOGUE Of Principall Scriptures, occasionally cleared, and fit­ly unfolded, in the foregoing TREATISE.

Ex dus.
1599 [...]
[Page] Numbers.
Deutren [...]my.
1 Samuel.
2 Samuel.
[Page] Jeremiah.
698 [...]
[Page] Romanes.
1 Corinthians.
2 Corinthians.
1 Thessalonians.
2 Thessalonians.
2 Timothy.
8 88
1 John.

Mystery of Dreames.

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