CHRIST THE CHRISTIANS CHOICE. OR A Sermon preached at the Funerall of Mr JOHN CAVVS one of the MAGISTRATES of the FAMOVS CORPORATION of PLYMOVTH. March The 29. Anno Dom. 1645.

By ALEXANDER GROSSE. B.D. and Pastor of Bridfoad.

Phil. 1.21.

To mee to live is Christ, and to dye is gaine:

Psal. 73.24.

Thou shalt guide me with thy Counsell, and afterward re­ceive me to glory.

Psal. 73.25.

VVhome have I in heaven but thee, and there is none upon earth, that I desire besides thee.

Psal. 73.26.

My heart and my flesh faileth, but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

LONDON Printed by R. B. for Iohn Bartlet at the Gilt Cup under St. Augustines Gate. 1645.

Philippians Chapter. 1. Vers. 23.‘Having a desire to depart, and be with Christ which is farre better.’

NOah left the earth to enter into the Arke, The chil­dren of Israel left the land of Egipt for the fruition of the land of Canaan: Every santified and beleeving soule is willing to leave all that it may fully enter into Christ, that it may have a compleat fruition of Christ, who is all in all. Better then all, infinitely more then all to every regenerate, and gracious soule. No prisoner but is willing to leave the prison-house, for the enjoyment of his owne house; No excile but is willing to leave the land of banishment for the repossessi­on of his owne Country: No soule that knowes its owne bondage un­der corruption, its owne alienation, and exilement from Christ, (in part at least,) during the dayes of its abode in this earthly tabernacle. but with Paul, hath a desire to depart and be with Christ which is farre better.

This our deceased Brother making use a little before his death of these words to his wife, almost to the same purpose Saint Paul made use of them to his Philippians. Haveing a desire to depart and to be with Christ which is farre better; Neverthelesse to abide in the flesh is more needfull for you. Is that which invited and moved me, to treat of these words, in this houre of his funerall, and from them to deduce some instructions for the proffet and consolation of the living.

The words propound unto us, and present before us, the choyse of a gracious soule the Paradise wherein it desires to dwell, the Sun which it desires to behold, the Pearle which it desires to possesse, the Haven wherein it desires to harbour, the Tree whereon it longs to feed, and the Fountains whereof it doth desire to draw and drinke a full and e­verlasting draught, even Iesus Christ, and nothing else, Haveing a de­sire to depart and to be with Christ which is farre better.

In the words there is. 1. Motus, a motion, the internall moving, stirring, longing, and working of the soule, excited, assisted, inabled, acted, moved, framed, and disposed, bent, and inclined, thereunto by the gracious presidentiall, active, and mighty power of the holy spi­rit; Like the motion and stirring of the heart of a prisoner, longing after, and looking out at the prison windowes for some tidings of liberty and freedom-: like the motion of a man in darknes, waiting for the appearance of the light; like the motion of a wife, in the time of [Page 4]her husbands absence, looking for, and expecting her husbands returne: a motion raised, excited, quickned, and strengthned, by a collation and comparison of the soules future felicity, with its present misery. as the husbandman compares, the joy of his future harvest, with the la­bour of his present winter. The souldier the glory of his future Crowne with the difficulty of his present battle; The traviller the comfort of his future Paradice; with the sadnes of his present Wildernes: lively sence of present misery, sweet and powerfull apprehension of fu­ture, and ensueing glory, fill the soule truly gracious with longings of unwearied, and sacred vehemency. Assurance of future happines makes a good man restles under the presant burthen of his corruption.

2 Here is Movens. The party longing desiring to depart; and that is Paul a chosen vessell, afaithfull servant of God a liveing member of Christ. None can truly desire to be dissolved but he that is sure to be saved. No man willingly leaveth his present habitation, but he that is assured of a better dwelling. No wise man willingly to cast of his present gar­ment, but he that hath another, a better to put on: No man can be upon right grounds willing to be dissolved, but only that man who is truely fanctified: he who is not throughly interested in Christ, cannot wil­lingly leave all for Christ: Eleazar Abrahams servant, put a jewell upon Rebeccaas face, Gen. 24.53. and bracelets upon her hands, and gave her jewels of silver and jewels of gould and rayment, and then shee was willing to goe with him, willing to leave all, and enjoy Jsaac for her husband. That soule alone which Christ beautifieth with the saveing gifts of his spirit, the love tokens of Christ, better gifts then jewels of silver, and gold. Js the soul, the only soule, that can forsake the dearest things of this life, that can readily leave its habitation in this mortall flesh, and take up its everlasting abode with Christ.

3 Here is Termin [...]s, the terme whereunto this gracious foule moves, and that is double the one Privative, the other Positive the first Priva­tive a desire to depart or be dissolved, exprossing the nature of death not an Annihilation. but a dissolution, a seperation of the foule and bo­dy, the foule is now in the body as a bird in the cage, a prisoner in the prison house; a traviller walking under a cloud, and therfore much desires a discharge, and exemption from his fad and burthensome con­dition; No child of God desires death under the naked and simple no­tion of death, it is in it selfe, the King of terrours, repugnant, and dis­structive to nature, a thing never desired for it selfe, but for some o­ther thing, therfore here is Secondly a Positive terme wherein this motion, and desire of the foule ends; that is in the fruition of Christ, that he may be fully and everlastingly with Christ; that he may come out [Page 5]of the prison of the flesh, to be clad with glory to sit downe, and raign with Christ as Joseph came out of prison haveing his prison garments taken from him, a Gould ring put upon his finger, royall apparell put upon his backe, and made the second person next to the King in the Kingdome of Egypt: that he may come out of all the servitude and sla­very bondage and troubles of this life to triumph with Christ leaving sinne, Satan, and the world behind him, conquered, subdued, distroyed, as Israel came out of the waters of the red Sea, triumphing, leaving Pharaoh and the Egiptians, Exo 15, 1. there drowned behind them. The fruiti­on of the Lord Iesus makes death desirable, and lovely in the eies of al truebeleevers.

4 Here is, Motivum. The motice, which sets the soule on worke, thus to desire to be with Christ; and this is drawne Ab V [...]. From the fruit, and benefit thero: It is fore better. To be with Christ then live here, to enjoy Christ then all things else, it is not only better, but farre letter, a thousand degrees better, for the sa [...]ctity, for the liberty, for the Safety, for the Satie [...]y, for the sweete Society and for the Fulnes of all Glory there to be enjoyed. The present felicitie of Gods children is very little, even nothing, incomparison of the future glory which shalbe put upon them.

J cannot, time will not give me leave, to insist upon all the perticu­ler branches of these words, though every one of them present, before us and offer to us respectively, variety of usefull, sweet, and comfor­table fruit; had we time and leasure but to gather them; I shall therfore for the present, give you one generall observation from them. St. Paul so Loved Christ, so Prized Christ, so Delighted in Christ, so Longed af­ter Christ, and Apprehended the fruition of such a plenitude and sweet­nesse, such duration, and continuance of all foule ravishing, and heart­contenting excellencies in the fell enjoyment of Christ; that he was willing to leave all, to depart with all, even with his very life, for the full enjoyment of Christ. whence observe.

That there is nothing so deare and precious to Gods faith full servants, Doctrine. noe not their very lifes, but they are willing to leave and lay them all downe for Christs lake; for the present, and future enjoyment of Christ: thus it was with St. Paul, and thus it is in proportion, in degree, according to the measure of grace received, with every child of God: the wife leaves all to enjoy matrimoniall communion with the husband; Sarah left all, Psa. 45.10. and went with her husband Abraham. True beleevers are the Bride and spouse of Christ: they forget their owne people and their fathers house to enjoy their husband Christ: they so love, they so re­member, they so delight in, and so long after Christ, that they love no­thing [Page 6]remember nothing, delight in nothing, prize nothing, desire no­thing in comparison of Christ Iesus; Mat. 13 44. be it otherwise never so deare & precious: the merchant in the parable sold all that he had for the preci­ous pearle, true beleevers are spirituall marchants, they trade, and traf­fick for Christ; Christ is to them a pearle of that price, that they joy­fully sell all, leave all for the present, and future enjoyment of him: this truth is carried by way of command in the Iniunction laid by our bles­sed Saviour upon the Angel of the Church of Smyrna. Rev. 2.1. Be thou faithfull unto the death, and I will give thee the crowne of life. Whatsoever trouble doe arise, whatsoever storme doe tosse and shake thee, whatsoever cloud of contumely doe seize upon thee, whatsoever band of violence be stretched out to rob and spoile thee, yet be thou saithfull in thy cove­nant with Christ, in thy profession of christ in thy undertaking for Christ in thy dependance upon Christ, in thy love unto Christ, in thy defence of the cause of Christ be thou faithfull to the death let life, and all goe, rather then let goe Christ; lay downe all for the Crowne of life, for the sweet, the full, and everlasting enjoyment of Christ. Thus the Apostle peter haveing declared the vanity and mutability of the whole frame of the creature, argueth and urgeth from thence the necessity of looking out for Christ, of hastning unto Christ, of making Christ sure unto our soules. 2 Pet. 3.13. Seeing then (saith he) that all these things shalb [...] dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and Godlynes. Looking for and hastning unto the comming of the day of God. Looking for the coming of and full enjoyment of Christ as a husbandman looketh for the coming, Luke 12.36. and gathering in, of the harvest; Looking and prepar­ing for Christ as a good servant waiteth, and prepareth for the coming of his Lord and Master: thus have the servants of God ever lively ex­pressed the sadnes of their condition without Christ, their high priz­ing of Christs gratious presence in his ordinances for the present, though they enjoy him herein but in part, a farreof, and obscurely, as we enjoy a friend in his letters, the Son in the starres. A birde the brid­groome in his love tokens. Yet when Christ hath at any time in his be­halse estranged himselfe from them, Psal. 63.1. they have beene as drie ground without water, in an Incessant thirst, as a chased Hart without the wa­ter brookes, full of restles motions, and ardent cries after Christ: As the hart panteth after the water brookes so panteth my soule after thee O God. my soule thirsteth for God, for the liveing God. When shall I come and appeare before God. They follow him as sttai David whether in life or in death, Rev. 14.4. the Virgins follow the Lam wheresoever hoe goeth whether in a codition of honour, or ignominy, of perce or trouble of losse or gaine they follow him: Psal. 84 10. David accounts One day in the Courts of God better [Page 7] a thousand, and prizes the place of a doore keeper in the house of God above the choyfest habitation among the tents of wickednesse Pre­ferring the poorest condition with Christ, above the highest condition without Christ: what was Moses his choise? did he not chuse to en­dure affliction with the people of God rather then to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season. Did not he refuse to be called the sonne of Pharaohs daughter? did not he esteeme the enjoyment of communi­on with Christ, and his members, though in the wildernesse, above the fruition of fellowship with the greatest profane worldly Nobles. though in a Paradise of all earthly pleasures? did not the primitive Christians take the spoyling of their goods joyfully knowing they had an abiding substance in heaven: were not they contented to be spoiled of all, rather then to be spoiled of Christ, and what is the glory of Gods deare servants, but this They loved not their lives unto the death; If they doe all this for the present enjoyment of Christ, where they en­joy him a farre off, and but in part, how much more will they do it, for an immediate and compleat enjoyment of him in the next life: having their conversation now in heaven, from whence also they look for the Saviour the Lord Iesus Christ, being turned unto God from Idols, to serve the living and true God: and to waite for his Sonne from hea­ven. By all which it plainly appeares that there is nothing so deare and precious to Gods faithfull servants no, not their very lives, but they are willing to leave and lay them all downe for Christs sake, for the present and future enjoyment of Christ.

For the fuller understanding, and clearer discerning of the extent and latitude of this truth there be foure things considerable, first the matter left, secondly the persons leaving it. Thirdly the manner how they leave it. Fourthly the end or finall cause for which they leave it.

First the matter left things most deare and precious to them, things of greatest price among the men of the world, things in their kinde for their quality most eminent as riches, Math. 9. [...]. honours, pleasures favour credit countenance and applause amongst men: Luk. 19.8.9. they are contented for the enjoyment of Christ to be men of no name, of no repute, of no wisedeme, Mat. 4.22. of no authority, of no wealth among men: things for their use most necessary as calling station and instruments of Lively­hood, Mat: 10.37. things for their relation very sweete and pleasant as friends father, mother, and things for their number, the very all which they possesse, Mat. 19.27. things for their Intimacy and nearenesse the most deare and precious, as life it selfe, so Paul here the traveller willingly leave all lamps, Luke: 4.26. candles, torcher, the greater and the lesser starres to enjoy the Sunne: the true travellers in the way to God in Christ, willingly leave [Page 8] all other comforts to enjoy Christ Jesus, the Sunne of all true con­solations:

Secondly the persons leaving all, laying downe all for Christ, Paul, and such as have the spirit of Paul: none have these desires besides the truely gracious: none but the bride leaves all for the bridegroome, It is not Orpah, Ruth 1.15.16. 2 Tim. 4. [...]. phil 3.7.8.. but Ruth that cleaves to Naomi in the day of her distresse, it is not Demas but Paul that esteemes all but dung and drosse in com­parison of the excellency of the knowledge of Jesus Christ, it is not the Coward but the valiant souldier, that willingly layes downe his life for his Captaine in the battell; 1 Tim. 19.20. Hyminoeus and Philetus are no sooner shaken with a tempest, but they forthwith make shipwracke of faith and a good conscience, onely Paul is the man that fights the good fight, that finisheth his course and keepes the faith: he alone that is a true par­taker of Christ is the man that will leave all for Christ.

Thirdly, 2. Tim. 4.7. the manner how they leave all willingly, it is their desire it is their choise, the bird willingly leaves his cage, to soare and fing aloft in the aire. Israel willingly left Egypt to free their shoulders from Pharroahs heavy burthens: the Lords faithful servants, the Israel of God indeed: willingly hazard, leave and lay downe all for God and Christ, to case themselves of the hurthen of corruption, and to enjoy communion with God and Christ, this they doe with desire as Paul d sired to d part, and this desire carries in it.

First, a sensible apprehension of the miferie and troublesomnesse of their present condition, the sence and feeling which Israel had of the sadnesse of their estate under the heavy burthens which Pharaoh impo­sed on them, Exod. 3. and cruell Task-Masters which he set over them made them willing to leave the land of Egypt, Rom 7, 24 and desirous to goe to Cana­an: 2 Col. 12.7.8. sence of the burthensomnesse of mans owne corruption, and of the violence and bitternesse of the buffettings of Satan, fills the soule with sad complaints of its present miserie and ardent prayers, for the enjoy­ment of full freedome from them and intire rest, and acquiescence in Christs bosome.

Secondly, an high prizing of Christ, as the onely glorious and shining Sunne, whence discend all the beames of spirituall consolation, as the Apple-tree, Mat. 4.2. Cant. [...].3. Col. 2.3. Cant. 3.10. whereon growes all sweet and desirable fruit for the nou­fishment of the soule, and under whose shadow it can repose, and rest it sell with much delight: as the store-house whence is derived all ce­lestiall treasure for the fouls inrichment: as the fairest of ten thousand in whom all soul ravishing, and heart admiring excellencies are discer­ned: he alone that takes the true measure of the worth of Christ, is the man that can leave, and lay downe all for Christ.

Thirdly, servent and unfained love to Christ, She [...]h [...]ms love to Dinah made him willing to undergoe the paine or Circumcision for her, Gen. 34. Jacobs love to Rachel put him upon a hard service, in the heate, and in the cold, in the day, and in the night for her; servent love to Christ, 2. Cor. 5.14. puts the gracious soule upon a ready undertaking of the hardest servie or Christ, a patient toleration of the greatest difficulties in the way of Christ, and a che refull effusion of its dearest blood for the exal­tation of Christ, for the fruition of full communion with Christ: true love to Christ resteth in nothing, Cant. 2 5. but in the fruition of Christ; all de­sires after Christ which spring not from unfained love to him, are fruitlesse have no acceptance with him never reach him, 1 Cor. 13.3.4. never worke the soule into the possession of him.

Fourthly, Psa. 42.1, 2. vehement longings after Christ, a holy restlinesse of the soule, and spirit untill it doth come to Christ, as the Bee untill it comes unto the Hive: the River untill it emptieth it self into the Ocean: and as the Dove did fly up and down, and found no rest for the sole of her foot untill she entred into the Arke. The soule which truely de­fires Christ meetes with contentation no where but in Christ; the thirst thereof is never satisfied untill it drinks a full draught of Christ, the heavenly Oecan, in whom are all soule-refreshing waters; the motion thereof is never terminated untill it comes fully home to Christ, the paradise in whom dwell all spirituall comforts.

Fifthly, Cant. 3.1. diligent Inquisition after Christ, carefull use of all meanes to enjoy Christ; these desires are no lazy, sluggish, weake feeble, and fleeting desires; Cant. 5.3 4. but strong, active, and stirring desires, desires knocking at the doore of the heart, and awakening it as a loud sounding trumpet rouseth a man out of his sleepe; desires quickning man, like spurres in his motion unto Christ; desires drawing a man like a loadstone unto Christ, 1 Sam. 23.15. David desired to drink of the water in the wells of Bethel, and his Worthies brake through the army of the Philistines, and brought waters thence: true desires after Christ neglect no meanes leading un­to Christ, breake thorow all oppositions betweene them and Christ: their soules are set upon an unwearied inquiry after him, a constant use of all meanes to enjoy him, when Joseph and Mary had lost Christ they went up and downe, and sought him sorrowing, never ceasing from their inquiry untill they found him; Luk 2 46. the soule which knowes what it is to loose Christ, what the sadnesse of the soule is without Christ: never ceaseth seeking untill he hath found him, never ceaseth from his mourning, till Christ returnes with sweete consolations againe unto him.

Sixtly, delight, he that ardently desires Christ, joyfully leaves all [Page 10] For Christ, accounts it all joy to fall into m nifold temptations for the cause of Christ: Ia. 1.2. Heb. 10 34 Acts 16.23. Dan. 3. takes the spoyling of all joyfully, sings in prison, is cheerefull in the wildernesse as in a paradise: walkes like the three children in the fiery furnace of great adversities as in a Palace: and comes when God calls him to the stake and fiery tryall as the hungry to a feast, the souldier to the crowne: or Bride to the marriage of the Bridegroome, and unto death it selfe through many temptations, weaknesses and disasters as Mariners to the haven thorow a violent and stormy tempest The way of the soule to Christ Jesus is not such a way of sorrows, but that it is mixt with man, sweet and secret pleasures.

Seventhly, a confident Resignation into the hands of Christ, he that truely and unfainedly desires Christ, doth not dye as a man uncer­taine where he shall goe, [...]t commeth as a Bride to the Bridegroom, as an obedient childe to his loving fathers house, with much assurance of gracious acceptation, of a sweet and everlasting entertainment and welcome, though he sometimes feel the winde of temptation blowing with much violence upon him: and dismall feare now and then fur­prizing him, yet with Teter in another case he cries Mast r save me, and immediately see Iesus stretching out his hand, Mat. 14.30.31. and saving him from sinking in the waters ready to swallow him: he beholds the winde ceasing, and an everlasting calme ensueing, upon the fall of this house of his flesh he sees a glorious habitation provided for him; he knowes that if his earthly house of this Tabernacle be destroyed, 2 Cor 5, 1 he hath a building made of God, an house not made with hands, but eter­nall in the heavens.

Fourthly, here is the end or finall cause, why the gracious soule doth leave all, and desires to goe hence: it is for Christs sake, that it may have the full fruition of Christ, that it may mount aloft and come to Christ: as the bird when the cage is broken or the prisoner when the prison house is beaten downe, and throwne into the dust have liberty, the one to fly, and the other to walke abroad and meete their compa­nions. [...] 4 17. Thus the Lords servants desire to depart; to leave this mansion of the flesh, that they may meet the Lord and so be ever with him, the ultimate end of every good mans desires and endeavours is the full fru­ition of Christ Jesus.

Having seene what it is that this observation carries in it, let us now descend to the reasons conducing both to the further illustration, and confirmation thereof; Reasons. now the reason why Gods servants doe so wil­lingly leave and lay downe all for the enjoyment of Christ is.

In regard of the Evill adherent to the present condition of Gods [Page 11] children though they be a red [...]ed people a people translated out of darknesse into the kingdome of Gods deare Sonne, Col. 1.13. yet they have some fetters still upon them, Esa. 54.13. though they be an instructed people, a people taught of God yet they have some ignorance remaining in them though they be a ga der inclosed, an [...]rchard of pomegranates with sweet fruites yet they have some weeds, Cant. some thornes and briars, there sprou­ting and spreading: there is a manifold evill yet adherent to Gods children.

First an evill of darknesse the day-star [...]e indeed hath appeared, 2. Pet. 1.19. but the Sunne is not yet fully risen in their soules is butday dawning they know but in part, 1 Cor. 13.1 [...]. there is some ignorance mingled with their knowledge.

Secondly an evill of bondage, though they be not led away captive at the will of Satan as voluntary slaves without reluctance and resist­ance: 2. Tim. 2.26 Rom. 7.14. yet they are sold under sin, as a man led captive against his will. Like Lazarus they are risen but yet they carry some of their grave­cloathes about them which doe in part still fetter and tye them.

Thirdly an evill of opposition, sickenesse opposeth health in men dis­eased Esau opposed Jacob in the wombe of Rebecca, Saul opposed David and made continuall warre against him, Sam. 3.1. the flesh opposeth the spirit, corruption opposeth grace in Gods children: fleshly lusts warre against the soule in the best of Gods people.

Fourthly an evill of uncleannesse, Gal. 5 17.1 Pet. 2.11. though they be washed, and sancti­fied and instified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God, Iob, 13.10. yet this is but in part, they are indeed perfectly instified but imperfectly sanctified: he saith our Saviour that is washed, needeth not fave to wash his seet but is cleane every whit, and ye are cleane, but not all.

Fiftly an evill of Temptation Egyptian Pharaoh pursued Israel after they were gone out of Egypt, the infernall Pharaoh pursues God, Isra­d after they are escaped the plenary servitude and slavery of this world, Zech 3.1.2. and their owne corruption, Satan stands at the right hand of Iosua the high priest to hinder his supplication: 2 Cor. 12.7 8. and he buffets Paul to disturb and vexe him, Satan now and then obtaines commission to tempt and try the best of Gods children.

Sixthly an evill of Burthens, there lyes on the shoulders of Gods servants a burthen of corruption a burthen of contumelies; a burthen of manifold afflictions, Israel in Egypt had cruell task-masters over, and heavy burthens imposed on them: Gods Israel in this world still tra­vels under heavy burthens, travelling like Israel thorow the wilder­nesse of many troubles, and red sea of many sorrows and sufferings, af­more [Page 12] or lesse, will rest as a burthen on Gods people, as long as they carry corruption about them.

Seventhly an evill of close and conscience-accusations, of heart smi­ting and selfe-judgings, Davids heart smites him for touching Sauls garment, Ioh 2 6. Job sees enough amisse within him to make him abhorre himselfe below the dust and ashes: Esaiah is sensible of so much un­cleannesse, Esa 6.5.6. that he is forced to cry out, wo is me for I am undone, be­cause I am a man of polluted lips: no man walkes with such exactnesse and circumspection, but that his conscience now and then, brings matter of accusation against him:

Eightly an evill of sorrows, for temporall or spirituall losses for their owne or others failings, for their owne or others miseries: the Lords people are seeds men sowing in teares now reaping in ioy: Psa 126.5. hereafter Gods children like Israel of old have such Canaanites like thornes in Judges 2.2. their sides and pricks in their eyes that they are full of lamentation, and mourning

Ninthly an evill of Commerce and communion with profane people who pricke like thornes, Ezek. 2.3. and sting like scorpions, and pierce and wound like arrows, vexing the righteous soules of Gods people, and making their very lives a burthen to them.

Tenthly an evill of Absence, they are not yet come fully home to Christ, they are at much distance from him; have not the full enjoy­ment of him while they are at home in the body they are absent from the 2. Cor. 5.6. Lord: and therefore are willing to leave and lay downe all that they may be discharged from this manifold evill.

2 In regard of the Termination of a gracious soules motion in Christ, every thing terminates its motion, in its proper, Christ is the soules Center, the rivers move and stop not, till they terminate their motion in the sea: the gracious soule is restlesse till it commeth unto Christ, Naomi said of Boaz unto Ruth the man will not be in rest untill he hath Ruth. 3. ult. finished the ma [...]ter this day: the soule intending wedlocke with Christ, will not, cannot be in full and thorow rest, untill it hath finished, and fully perfected its wedlock with Christ, psal 104.34. 1 Cor 2.2. Col 2.7. the whole or a gracious man moves to Christ: the motion of his imagination is to the thought, and meditation of Christ: the meditation of Christ is sweete unto him; the motion of his und [...]rstanding is to the knowledge of Christ, hee desires to know nothing but Christ, and him crucisied, the motion of his faith is to the alsufficiencie, Cant. 5 10. Cant. 2.5. worth and efficacy of Christ: be i [...] rooted, and built up in Christ, the motion of his love is to the beauty and ex­cellency of Christ: he is the fairest of ten thousand in his eye, and his soule is sicke o [...] love to Christ: every way the motion of a sanctified [Page 13] is to Christ, the travellers motion is to his home, the the thirsty mans motion is to the fountaine, the good mans motion is to Christ, he ne­ver attaines his desired perfection untill he hath gotten the full pos­session of him: and therefore leaves all to enjoy him.

3 In regard of that union which a gracious soule hath with Christ, by saith and love, he is not so united unto any thing, as to Christ, he is so united to him that he is be come one with him boxe of his bone, Ioh. 17.21, Ephes. 5.29. Ioh. 15.19. ana flesh of his flesh he is united to Christ with a separating and singling union, with an union separating him from the world as a woman joyned in with an union separating him from the world as a woman joyned in wedlocke is separated from her owne people, and her fathers house, with an union crucifying the world unto him and him againe unto the world: Gal. 6, [...]. he is united unto Christ with a deriving and enriching union, drawing from Christ grace for gra [...]e, Ioh. 1 15. filled with Christs fulnesse and made compleate n him: he is united unto Christ with a translating and transforming union, an union transforming him into the very im­age of Christ, making him pure as Christ is pure; he is united to Christ with an inflaming and soule ravishing union: 1 Ioh. 3.3. Cant. 8.6. kindling a fire in his heart which no waters can quench & many floods cannot drown: he is united to Christ with an indissoluble union, Math. 15.18. Ioh. 10.28. so united, that nei­ther the powers of hell, nor earth can dissolve it; he is united unto Christ with a victorious union, an union overcomming all the prof­fers, 1 Ioh. 5.4. Ioh. 3.30. and oppositions of the world: a prostrating union, casting a man and all his gifts and abilities downe at the feet of Christ, making a man willing to be nothing in the eyes of men that Christ may be ex­alted: Ephes. 4.12.13 an aspiring union ascending unto more and more perfection never ceasing untill the soule is wrought into a full communion with Jesus Christ, making a man willing and industrious to cast away whatsoever may hinder his enjoyment of Christ, to breake prison to come to Christ, 1 Kings 19. [...]. to leave all to be with Christ, as Elisha left his yokes of oxen to follow Eliah

4 In regard of that preheminence which Christ hath in the heart of a gracious man, above all other things he giveth Christ preheminence:

First in his choice, he chooseth Christ rather then all or any other thing whatsoever, the traveller chooseth the Sun rather then any other light to guide him; the builder chooseth the rock, rather then the sand to build upon: and the wise merchant the pearle, rather then the pebble to enrich him: the gracious man preferreth Christ as the onely wise Counseller able to advise him, the ovely racke able to support him, and the onely [...]ear [...]e wherein is all worth to inrich bun: he chooseth the gifts and graces of Christ before all other treasures: bee preserreth the love of Christ, the light of his countenance, above all [Page 14] other pleasures, and earthly abundance: there is nothing without this can give him contentation. 2 [...] 31, 32. Absolon thought it a small thing that he lived at Ierusalem, nay he esteemed his life as nothing, unlesse hee might see the Kings face: a good man esteemes it a little thing to live at Jerusalem, I meane to have all Gods ordinances, unlesse he en­joy the face of Christ with them: Psal [...]3.3. Psal. 4.6. his very life without this seemes but a burthen: when the face of Christ shines there is exceeding great joy and rejoycing, when this is hidden there is a cry, much mourning and lamentation. Psal. 30.7.

Secondly in his feare, men give preheminence in their feare to their Soveraigne, above the subject, children to their fathers above the houshold servants: wives to their husbands above strangers: good men feare Christ as their Soveraigne as their fathers, as their husband with an awfull, a spirituall, a filiall, an affectionate and submissive feare, choosing rather to offend all the world then to offend Christ: they feare the command of Christ, Acts 4 19. Mat. 10.28. Dan. 3.17. more then the command of man: the wrath of Christ more then the wrath of men: the losse of Christ favour, more then the losse of any, or all men whatsoever: they chuse rather to expose themselves to mans greatest rage and indignation, then to provoke Christ in the least sillable of voluntary and witting deviation from the rule which Christ hath prescribed to them.

Thirdly in his love, the wife preferres the husband in her love above all other persons; he that is married unto Christ loves Christ more then all creatures, he loves him not carnally but spiritually, his love ariseth from a seed of grace sowne in the heart, it is a fruit of Gods Spirit, he loves him not constrainedly but freely, his love moves to Christ like water flowing from a living spring: he loves him not with a niggardly but a bountifull love, with a love moving him to give all that he hath to Christ: he loves him not with a sinister but a sincere love; not in a shew but in truth not in word but in deed; he loves Christ not with a faint and languishing love, but with a strong and victorious love; a love overcomming all opposition a love carrying him home to Christ, a love causing him to abide with Christ in all changes, 1 Sam. 18.1.2. to rest upon him in all conditions, a love like the love of Jo­nathan to David, Jonathan so loved David that he was contented to run the hazard of his fathers displeasure, to be abased that David might be exalted, and disrobe himselfe for Davids sake: the gracious soule so loveth Christ, that he is ready for Christs sake to incurre the hatred of his dearest friends according to the flesh, to humble him­selfe belowe the dust for the exaltation of Christ, and to put oft this garment o [...] the flesh, that he may honour and enjoy Christ.

Fourthly in his possession, he had rather possesse Christ then all things else; all other possessions are but an empty vessell to the poses­sing of Christ: Gen. 14.21. the King of Sodome sometime said to Abraham give me the persons take thou the substance: the gracious man is ready to say to his neighbour, give me Christ, and take the goods, house ho­nours, body, and whatsoever else he that will: all other possessions are but a wildernesse to this paradise: a b [...]amble to the vine, the fig­tree and the olive-tree as Iotham in another case expressed himselfe Judges 9 9. in this parable.

Fifthly in Communion men of generous disposition prize communi­on with princes above communion with beggars: wives preserre fellowship with their husbands above fellowship with servants: fel­lowship with Christ is the longing desire of every gracious soule they say of this as Peter did of the mount it is good being here, Math. 17.4. the desire of their soules is to dwell with Christ: to live continually in the blessed presence of Christ, and as they give him preheminence in their choise, feare love possession and communion, so they are willing to leave and lay downe all for him.

Fifthly in regard of that gaine which commeth to a gracious man by leaving and laying downe his goods, liberty, or life for Christs sake: the more he leaves for Christ the more he shall receive, the greatest loosers for Christ are the greatest gainers by Christ: Math. 19.29. it is our Saviours promise whosoever shall loose father or mother or house or lands &c. for my Names sake shall bare an hundred fold more in this life, and life everlasting hereafter: the seed thus sowne returnes with a plentifull harvest: this is the best adventure to make a rich merchant the least gaine of Christ is recompence enough for a whole worlds losse: Phil. 1, 23. the having of Christ make every condition gainfull, Christ saith St. Paul is both is life and death advantage. Israel by leaving Egypt, got a land flowing with milke and honey. Mose [...] by leaving the honour of Pharaohs Court, got greater honour in becomming both a leader and a wonder-worker before the children of Israel in the wildernesse:Peter by leaving his nets became a fisher of men, the Lord hath many wayes to make the grestest losses of his servants most advantagious: by death it selfe a gracious man hath a gaine o [...] much light he beholds the Sun in the fulnesse of his rising: 1 Cor. 13.12. 1 Ioh. 3.1.2 3. he sees face to face, and knowes even as he is knowne: he hath a gaine or compleate purity, Ephe. 5.26. Act 12.7. like Absolon in another respect, having no blemish from the crowne of the head, unto the sole of the font, a man without spot or wrinkle: he hath a gaine of liberty, he commeth as Peter out of Herods prison, all his setters smitten off, as Israel out of the red sea [Page 16] leaving Satan, the world, and his owne corruption there drowned behinde him. Lastly he baths gaine of the greatest honour communi­cable to the soule of man, Rev. 2.10. 2 Tim. 4 8. a crowne of life and glory given him: and hence it is hat such are willing to leave and lay downe all for Christ, that they may leave the full fruition of him.

This by way of reprehension reproves two sorts of men: Vse. First such as are so farre from leaving and laying downe all for Christ, for the present and future enjoyment of Christ; that they will neither lay out, nor lay downe any thing for Christ: so farre from being willing and desirous with Paul to be dissolved from their bodies, that they will not be dissolved from the least part, or parcell of their possessions, honour, riches, pleasures, liberties or priviledges amongst men for Christs sake: but when Christ, the cause of Christ, the church of Christ in the course of Gods providence, call for helpe, reliefe, sup­portment, comfort, and encouragement, at these mens hands as some­times David did at the hands of Nabal these men like the sonnes of 1 Sam. 25.11. Nabal, answer Christ as Nabal their father answered David, who is David and who is the sonne of Iesse; there be many servants now a dayes that breake away every man from his master, shall I then take my bread and my water and my flesh which I have killed for my shearers, and give it unto men whom I know not whence they be: thus they are ready to answer who is Christ, and who is the church of Christ, there be ma­ny that rebell and without cause draw troubles and calamities on their owne heads: shall I then take my bread and water, my possessi­ons and riches which I have provided for me and mine, and give it to I know not who: and of these may Christ truely say as David did of Nabal surely in vaine have I kept all that these fellows have, for they have requited me evill for good: and as David was full of wrath against Nabal, and resolved the utter extirpation of him and his house, so no doubt the indignation of Christ is kinled, and burnes like fire against such mercilesse and cruell caitiffes: neither can they ex­pect a blessing but a curse on themselves and their posterity after them the sentence of our Saviour against such is very dreadfull, and such as may make them act Belshazar living, in the midst of their great pos­sessions. Matth. 25 Depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire which is pre­pared for the d [...]vill and his Angels, for I was an hungred and ye gave me no meate thirsty and ye gave me no drinke: I was a stranger and yee tooke me not in unto you. I was naked and ye clothed me not: sicke and in prison, Iudg. 8 5.6, and ye visited me not: verily (saith Christ) in as much as ye did it not to one of the least of these ye did it not to me, and these shall go into everlasting paine: you may please to call to minde the story betweene [Page 17] Gideon and the princes of Succoth: Gideon and his men were weary and aint in the pursuit of their enemies, and Gideon said unto the men of Succoth, give I pray you morsels of brean unto the people that follow me for they be weary that I may follow after Zeba and Zalmunna Kings of Midian: to whom the princes of Succoth answered, are the hands of Zeba and Zalmunna now in thy hands that we should give bread unto thine [...]: to whom Gideon replyed, therefore when the Lord hath delivered Zeba an Zalmunna into mine hands I will tear your flesh with thornes of the wildernesse and with bryers: which upon his victory he did accordingly: Gideon was a type of Christ, and Christ is the Captaine of the Lords host: Ios. 5.14. when his souldiers his people at this day are weary and faint in fighting his battells, in defending his cause, in pursuing his and their enemies, Christ speakes to many amongst us, as Gideon to the men of Succoth: give I pray bread, flesh, lodging, cloathing, to these men that follow me, that stand for me, that fight for me and my truth; that lay downe all for me and my cause: to whom many men answer as the men of Succoth answered Gilead, are the Cavalleirs now in thine hands? hast thou vanquisht and overcome them: it is yet doubtfull which side will prevaile; why then shall we give our bread unto, or make provision for thine army: but let these men looke to it, when Zeba and Zalmunna when the publike and open enemie shall be suodued, Christ hath thornes and briars, fearefull judgements for them that withdraw their assistance in the day of the Churches distresse, judgement mercilesse is the por­tion of them that shew no mercy.

Secondly,Mat. 1.20. it repr [...]veth such as will spare something, but not the best things like them of old in the prophet, that would spa [...]e the blinde the lame and the sick for sacrifice, but not that which was sound and with­out blemish: Iam. 2.16. Ezek. 33.31. they will spare the tongue, but not the hand their bodly presence but not their hearted soule presence: they will spare some but not all for Christ, when they are put upon this, to leave all, and take Christ alone, Mat. 19.21. they goe away sorrowfull: some will spare their goods but not their lives, they will not with Paul be dissolved, Peter once left all, but he would not at that time leave his life for Christ, but denyed his Master to save his life: now these men doe herein, and hereby plainely discover.

First an overprizing of the creature, so esteeme it,M [...]t. 8. that they value the unworthlest of their possessions as the Gaderines did their swine above Jesus Christ: so love it, that upon the losse, or likely hood of taking it away, they goe weeping after it as sometimes [...]haltiel went weeping after Mical to Bahurim: so adore and serve it, so rest [Page 18] and relie upon it, that when it is gone they runne up and downe like Mica after his idole, Iudg. 18.24. and cry out as men undone.

Secondly a shamefull underprizing of Christ: he that will not leave a pebble for a pearle, a broken bottell for a river, a barren branch for a fruitfull tree, under values the pearle, river, tree, all creatures excellency is nothing in comparison of Christs glory: they very wickedly, and shamefully disparage Christ, that preferre or equalize any thing to Christ; Luke 14.8. let such men with the invited guests in the parable, never look to partake of Christ with comfort, whose love unto, or delight in the creature withholds them from giving their hearts unto Christ.

Thirdly, hereby they hazard the very losse of what they retains, and get by leaving Christ, their losse is ever greater then their gaine, usu­ally they loose the very thing which they withhold; Ioh. 12. he that will save his life shall loose it, he that will save his honours, his riches, his liberty his favour with men shall loose the same: how ignominious to all suc­ceeding generations hath beene the name of the Scribes and Pharisees who for the maintenance of their owne name and honour, studied and consulted the eclipsing and obscuring of the name and honour of Christ: how odious is the name of Judas who laboured his own gain, more then gaining of honour and soules to his Master Christ: take this for thy portion whosoever thou art that seekest to make thy selfe rich and honourable, with the losse and dishonour of Christ, thy name and riches both shall be everlastingly buried in the dust of dishonour and reproach.

Fourthly, hereby they draw a curse on themselves and on their posses­sions, 2 Sam. 6. [...]. they having of Christ like the Arke to the house of Obed Edon makes all to prosper, like the [...]rce to the waters of Marah, it makes the bitterest condition pleasant and comfortable: Exo. 15, 25. the deniall of Christ the losse of Christ turnes all into a curse, like the evill herb that turned the prophets pot into a pot of death: 2 Kings 4.40. all that men get against Christ, all that men keepe with the dishonour of Christ, proves like Achans golden wedge and Babylonish garment, Ios. 7. a curse and ruine to their whole possession, therefore thus saith the Angel of the Lord, curse ye Me­roz, Iudg. 5.13. curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof, because they came not to the help of the Lord against the mighty

Fifthly hereby they contract shame, raise a cloud of dishonour upon their owne heads, that never shall be blotted out: is it not the shame of all shames, to a wise to forsake her husband for the love of an un­worthy servant; for a sonne to leave his parent, and with the Prodi­gall to run a rioting with loose and dissolute companions, to a souldier to leave his captaine, and betake himselfe unto the enemies quarters: [Page 19] is Christ your husband, your father your Captaine; will you leave him for the gaine the honour, the pleasure of the world? will you leave him and enter consort with profane people; will you fly from him, and joyne with his enemies, be assured then your memory shall rot, your name shall goe out like a candle: leaving nothing but an unsavory smell behinde it Your honour shall lie in the dust, your name shall everlastingly perish.

This by way of counsell should advise all men to work their hearts to alow prizing of their present estate, and every thing they have here, incompart on of the enjoyment of Christs Gods children desire to be dis [...]ed, they know it to be better to be with Christ, then to conti­nue here therefore looke on all your outward priviledges, and prero­gatives as on d [...]gand drosse in comparison of the excellency of Christ, Phil. 3 8. nay look on the gift, and on all the best things of God which you have here in this [...]e, in comparison of the full enjoyment of Christ, even a few gleani [...]s [...]n comparison of the full vintage as on the daw [...]ing, in comparison of the Noon-day, as on some small love-tokens in compari­son of the compleate enjoyment of the bridegroome: 2 Cor. 1.22. we have the good things of God now as waters in a bottle, then we shall have them as waters in the fountaine, 3 now we have them as an earnest peny, then we shall have them in the full summe.

This ministers matter of sweet and singular consolation to the survi­ving friend of all the godly deccated: it was their desire to be dissol­ved, Iudg. 8.2. it is better, yea farre better for them, they have a possession now, the least mite whereof is better then all the possessions of the earth we may say of this as Gideon did of the gleanings of Ephraim: the glean­ings of Ephraim are better then the vintage of Abiezer here they were as [...]itors now their mairrage is consumm [...]e, here they were as men walking in setters, now they are as men walking in chains of gold: here their bread was mingled with grav [...]ll, and their drink with gall, now they have a sumptuous and a costly feast, here they were as soul­diers in the Battel, now they have a glorious crowne put upon them, here they were [...] seed-men sowing in teares, now they are as harvest men reaping in great job: here they were as runners in a race, now they have obtained the prize: here they were as wor [...]s and no men, obscured with many clouds, now they have a name as glorious as the Sun, here their dw [...]lling was as in a dungeon, as in a house continually dropping thorow and ready to fall, now they have a glorious [...]al [...]ce wherein to dwell here they had consortship with men who were as thornes in their sides,Rev. 14.13. now they have communion with God, with Christ, with the glorious Angels and glorified Saints: in a word now they are ceased from their labours, and heir works follow them: there­fore [Page 20] as we sorrow at our owne losse, 1 Thes. [...]13 14. so let us rejoyce in their gaine remembring that of the Apostle. I would not brethren have you igno­rant concerning them which are a sleep, that ye sorrow even not as others which have no hope, for if we beleeve that Iesus is dead, and is risen, even so them that sleep in Iesus, will God bring with him.

4. This by way of Excitation should perswade and move men to a singular willingnes to leave all for Christ to lay down life, and all, and be desirous to be dissolved, for the enjoyment of Christ, to suffer wrong for Christ, to abide in any low and sad condition with Christ as Ruth with Naomi: to long for Christs coming; to say with the Spouse, come Lord Iesu: But how shall we work our hearts to this, to be willing to suffer for Christ to work for Christ to lay down, Answer 1. Psal 51.8. Iob. 33.19.20. & leave all for Christ.

Be experienced in the bitternes of sin, how it breakes the bones How it causeth man to abborre his bread, and his soul, dainty meat, how it makes his flesh to fail: Rom. 7.14. that it cannot be seen, and his bones to shiver, How it strikes with sorrow, and makes man to cry, O miserable man that I am who shall deliver me from this body of death, be experienced in the misery of this bondage, and thou shalt not much fear any pri­son whereinto man can cast thee; be sensible of the weight of this burthen, and the imposition of Pharaohs burthens shall not much molest thee: know thou the hidiousnesse of a tempestuous and ac­cusing consciences, and all the accusations of men shall not much perplex thee, be sensible of the bitternesse of Gods wrath against sin, and the declination of the wrath of men shall never prevail with thee to draw thee to do evill, be acquainted with the losse which commeth by sin, and thou shall be willing to loose all rather then fall into any sin, be sensible of the troublesomnesse of this Inmate sinne, and thou shalt be willing to go out of this house of thy flesh that thou mayest cease from sinne, the more the soul is afflicted with the burthen of its own corruption, the more it is experienced in the bit­ternesse of the fruits of sinne the more it longs to depart from this ta­bernacle of the flesh and to be with Christ. Col 3.11.

Secondly get a through taste of the goodnes and sweetnes of Christ, taste what Christ is to the soule when all is gone, even all in all, a Sun in darknes, a [...] in drought, and a stoore house in every want: and without Christ all worldly fullnesse is very vanity and emptines, a body without a soule a s [...]mpe without oyle, a bone without marrow. Every high thing without Christ is base, every strong thing without Christ is weake, and every full thing without Christ is empty: it is Christ that filleth all in all he is the fullnesse of our knowledge, he that knowes not Christ is very blind and ignorant, he is the fullnesse of our faith, if wee apprehend not Christ our faith is all empty hand; he is the fullnes of our [Page 21] Love, love is never perfect, never resteth untill Christ is imbraced, he is the fullnesse of our joy, if we joy not in Christ, we rejoyce in a thing of nought, he is the fullnes of all our possesions, if we posses not Christ with them we have but a barren possession, like the dry ground which Caleb gave unto his daughter Achsa without the wither springs, Ios. 15.19. therefore get a full and thorough taste of Christ, of the sweetnesse and plea­santnes of Christ, as the eye the sweetnes of the Sun, the palate the sweetnes of the wine, satiate thy soule in Christ, in the goodnes, full­nes fatnes, and sweetnes which cometh from him, marry thy soule to him, take up thine abode and dwelling with him; fill thine eies with the beholding of Christs beauties, and say as Peter when he saw the gloryous transfiguration of Christ on the mount, It is good being here. Feed thy soule on Christ and say with them Iohn 6. Iohn. 6. Lord give us ever­more of this bread. Let thy heart so love him, so admire him, so choose, so cleave unto him, that thou mayest be able to say of Christ as David of Goliahs sword, there is none to that, there is none to Christ; and this will make thee willing to leave, and lay downe life and all for Christ.

Thirdly got assurance of glory with Christ, be sure of raigning with him, and thou shalt be joyful in suffering and laying all downe for him were the souldier sure of the conquest and the crowne, he would never feare to enter the battel, assurance of the crowne of life exceedingly sweetens mans passage through the vally of death. Get cleare and in­vincible evidence of Gods love, and of intrest in the first resurrection, and then as Joseph willingly put of his prison garment, so shall you this garment of your flesh, and as Israel went joyfully through the sea to Canaan, so shall you through the deepe waters of all sorrowes, trou­bles, changes yea death it selfe, unto heaven. You shall have a desire to depart and be with Christ which is farre better.

Now concerning this our deceased brother; There are in the course of divine providence, some acts of God towards him worthy of obser­vation; and some acts again of his, in themselves worthy of imitation, If you cast your eye on God and behold him in the way of his provi­dence and dispensation you may observe.

1. An act of Gods liberall and bou-tifull communication; from small beginnings the Lord increased and multiplyed his outward and earthly stock to a great abundance: he might have said as old Jacob did. I am lesse then the least of all the mercies, Gen. 32 101 and all the truth which thou hast shewed unto thy servant: for with my staffe came I over this Jordan, I now have gotten two Bands: you must know that riches are the Lords, and he doth with his own what be please: Mat. 20.5. it is not the naked having, but the well using of riches that makes them truely comfortable to them that [Page 22] have them. [...] 2.5. It is not the rich in worldly goods, but the rich in faith are heirs of the Kingdoms which God hath provided for them that love him, riches without grace and Holinesse are but as a lamp in a foolish virgins hand without oil, therefore as Christ charged his disciplet not to labour for the bread which perisheth but for the bread which endureth to everlasting life: Iohn 6. so labour you not for fading and perishing riches, but for that riches, Heb. 10 34. which is an abiding substance: when God makes men not onely rich in goods, but in true and saving goodnesse, there goes the character of Gods undoubted loving kindnesse.

Secondly, You may here of serve Gods act of Exaltation; the Lord raised him from a low condition, to the highest pitch and step of out­ward dignity this place could afford him; wherein you may see that of Hanna verified, 1. Sam. 2.7.8. The Lordmak th [...] poore, and maketh rich bringeth low and exalteth, be raiseth up the poore out of the dust, and lifteth up the begger from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and [...]o make them inherit the throne of glory: you may here see that of the Palmist made good. Psal. 7 5.6.7. Promotion commeth neither from the East, nor fram the West, nor from the South, but God is the Iudge, he maketh low, and he maketh high: Yet this observe, that when God doth not onely exalt a man in civill jurisdiction over his brethren but in spirituall jurisdiction over his corruption, Satan and the world, that is the man whom God makes truely honourable: that man alone who honours the place of eminency wherein God sits him, by his wise and gracious deportment in it, and faithfull discarge of it, is the man that shall be everlastingly honoured.

3 The Lord gave him not only wealth and dignity among the people, but also knowledge and understanding in the things of this life and part­ly in the things of a better life: now there is a knowledge Hystoricall, and a knowledge my [...]icall a knowledge speculative and a knowledge experiamentall, a knowledge discussive and a knowledge practicall: that man that doth not onely know the way of God but all walk in it, is the man that shall be surely blessed, that knowledge alone which is affective, submissive, and communicative argues a saving illumination i [...] them that have it, much knowledge in the understanding without sutable obedience in the conversation, doth exceedingly aggravate mans condemnation

There are also some acts of his, which in themselves are worthy of Imnitation.

First, An act of Ministration he was not a sealed fountain, he kept not all unto himsel [...], but for divers yeers together laid aside a certain some every day for the poore: simply to give of what a man hath, is not enough: he alone that gives in love to God, in pity to them that [Page 23] need, Heb 23.13. and for the glory of God, is the man that shall not loose his re­ward: thus to communicate and to do good, is a sacrifice wel-pleasing in the sight of God.

Secondly, His discourse and communication was often of the best things, he knew how to speak to edification; and usually according to that of our Saviour, out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh, and so I suppose we are to conceive it, unlesse we know the contrary to it.

Thirdly, It was observed by such as were very neere him, that hee seldome did set himselfe about any weighty undertaking, but he first addressed himself to God by prayer for councell & a blessing: barely to pray is insufficient to argue any man to be a childe of God; that prayer alone is acceptable, and returnes with a blessing which proceeds from faith and unfained affection.

Lastly, you all know that he was a zealous maintainer and stout de­fender of the Jurisdiction authority dignity and priviledges of this Incorporation; and as touching the common controversie of the Kingdome I am very confident by what I have heard him speake, and seene him doe that he was very really and cordiall to the Parliament, however some jealousies to the contrary were raised.

But why or for whose sakes is all this spoken, but for yours that are living: shortly to let you see the vanity of all outward things, how then like Jonahs goard that came up in an evening and wither in the morning, to let you see that richer profit not in the day of wrath, onely righteousnesse delivereth from death. 2. To move you to a faithfull im­ployment of that talent wherewith the Lord hath intrusted you, not­withstanding all your wealth and authority your body like this your brother will lie shortly in the dust, & you shall appear before the Lords tribunall there to receive according to that which you have done in the body whither it be good or evil: therefore like good nurses draw forth now your full breasts to nourish the Lords hungry servants cast out the beams of consolation upon them that set in sorrow and sadnesse, as the Sun casteth out his light for the direction and comfort of poore tra­vellers, and the clouds their rain for there freshing and making fruitfull of the dry and barren ground. 3. To stir you to be men of prayer indeed, to pray not like Mariners in a storme, not formally, customarily, coldly, and for fashion onely as many doe, like a company of canting beggers that pray for custome and not for conscience, but understandingly, sen­sibly affectionately that Christ may heare and help you, and that Christ may abundantly blesse and prosper you, acquaint your selves with God by prayer daily, sweetly, throughly that peace, and mercy may be [Page 24] upon you. 4. To perswade you to consecrate your selves and all your abilities unto God to be active and lively indeed for God, to bee faithfull in keeping Covenant with God, to bee full and fruithfull in every good way and worke of God; to worke and keep your soul in such an understanding, holy, humble, penitent, beleeving, hea­venly, sincere, circumspect, and universally gracious frame and temper, condition and posture, that you be able at all times and sea­sons, in all estates and conditions every one for himself to say with the Apostle. I have a desire to be dissolved and be with Christ which is serve better.


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