A Seasonable and Christian Caution Against the Provoking Sin of PRIDE and other manifest Evils, and of the JUDGEMENTS threatned because thereof, Compassionately tendered to the Inhabitants of LONDON, and elsewhere Concerned, as a Warning to REPENTANCE.

I. MY Soul with many others having been often bowed down under a deep sence and burthen of the Impenitence, hard­ness of Heart, Unsensibleness, Pride and Presumption abounding in this City of London and Nation of England; and being sensible the great God is thereby highly offended, and pro­voked to Anger, and that even the Nation is in great Danger, deeply to suffer by the Sins of the People, and the great abuse of the Mercies of God: I Considered what Method I might use to persuade this People (professing Christianity and the Holy Scriptures to be their Rule of Life, &c.) to be ashamed of this Reigning Sin of Pride; whereupon in the Sence of the Love of God, and in great compassion to this City and Nation, I said in my Heart (as the Matter truly opened) Let us try them with the Holy Scripture Testimonies, and let none be angry nor offended thereat, but take warning and speedily Repent; For if they will not hear Moses and the Prophets, nor regard the Com­mands or Testimonies of Christ Jesus, or his Holy Apostles (when duly applyed) Neither will they hear if one should rise from the Dead to warn them.

Pray Consider.
  • 1. ‘It is the wicked that is so proud that he seeketh not after God.’ Psal. 10. 4. And what then will be the Judgement of such? ‘The Lord will Cut off them that are turned back from him, and those that have not sought the Lord nor enquired after him.’ Zeph. 1. 4, 5, 6.
  • 2. Who is King over the Children of Pride, but the Wicked one, the Devil, the Old Crooked Serpent, (Figuratively call'd Leviathan, Job 41. 25. Isa. 27. 1.) to be sure the Children of Pride are none of God's Children, nor Christ's Subjects or Followers, but averse to his Ex­ample of Humility and Self-denial.
  • 3. ‘The high look of man shall be humbled, and the loftiness of men shall be abased, for the day of the Lord of Hosts is upon all the Proud and haughty, and upon all that is exalted, and it shall be made low:’ Isa. 2. 11. 12.
  • 4. ‘For behold the day cometh that shall burn as an Oven, and all the Proud, yea all that do wickedly shall be as Stubble, and the day that cometh shall burn them up saith the Lord of Hosts.’ Mal. 4. 1.
  • 5. When ‘Pride cometh then cometh shame, but with the lowly is Wis­dom.’ Prov. 11. 2. ‘Pride goeth before destruction, and an high mind before the fall.’ Pro. 16. 18. ‘The Lord will destroy the house of the Proud man,’ Pro. 15. 25. ‘The Pride of a man shall bring him Low, but the humble in Spirit shall enjoy Glory,’ Pro. 29. 23.
  • 6. ‘The Lord of Hosts hath decreed this to stain the Pride of all Glory, and to bring to contempt, all them that be Glorious in the Earth.’ Isa. 23. 9. ‘Wo to the Crown of Pride, to the Drunkards of Ephraim, for his glorious Beauty shall be a fading Flower, which is upon the head of the Valley of them that be fat, and are overcome with Wine.’ Isa. 28. 1. ‘They shall be troden under foot even the Crown of the Pride of the Drunkards of’ Ephraim. ver. 3.

Now pray observe what an apparent Embleme and Mark of the Crown of Pride is now your Womens lofty Head-Tire, their strange Tower­ing and Extravagant Dresses upon their Heads, and how Immodest vain and Antick, thereby many even overtopping the Men? And what a doting, vain and foolish Humour 'tis in any men to delight to see their Wives or Chil­dren go in such vain, Immodest and Indecent Dresses, and what ill Exam­ples are even many of the Priests and Ministers Wives and Children therein? And what a sad Reproach and Scandal to Religion and the Christian Profession to see Assemblies for Religious Worship, so much filled with abominable Pride in Attire, as with those high Towering Dresses, Extravagant and Excessive Wigs, more for Pride of Orna­ment than Service or Necessity. And what a foolish and Effeminate Hu­mour it is in any to affect such Extravagancy and Excess in Apparel and vain Ornaments; and how greatly unbecoming Religious Assemblies, pretending Worship, Fasting, Prayer, Humiliation, and Repentance.

And for any to excuse their Pride and Immodesty in Apparel, either by pretending that Pride is not in the Apparel, but in the Heart, or that they may wear their Proud & Vain Garbs (their Immodest Lofty and Towering Dresses) and yet not be Proud in Heart: Herein they wrong their own Consciences, Flatter and deceive themselves in their Pride and Folly; let them but seriously look into, impartially search and Examine their own Hearts and Consciences with the Light of Christ therein, and they'l easily see how that frequently their Minds, Affections, and Hearts have been busied and taken up to Imitate and get into the Vain Fashion, Modes and Habits of Courts and Gentry, Invented in France and other Places. And what a shame and disgrace it is for English Protestants so much to affect the French Vain and Immodest Fashions and Habits, or to be such Slaves to the Pride of France, when they would be Loath to be Slaves to their Power: Oh! take heed how you provoke the great God by your Pride and Excess, and do not Flatter your selves. The root of all your Pride in Habit is in your Hearts; and from Within, Even out of the Heart Proceed evil thoughts Adulteries, Fornications, Murthers, Thefts, Covetousness, Wicked­ness, Deceit, Ʋncleanness, a Wicked Eye, Backbiting, Pride and Foolishness, Mark. 7. 20, 21, 22, 23. Therefore 'tis a false Excuse and contrary to Christ's Doctrine for any to say, that Pride or Foolishness is not in their Hearts, when 'tis apparent and notorious in their Habits and foolish Attire.

II. PRide in Root and Branch, in Heart and Habit with its Immo­desty, Vanity and Foolishness in Apparel, and the evil Ex­ample thereof, is altogether and expresly forbidden of God and his Christ, and directly contrary to the Holy Scriptures.

1st. How can it consist either with our Christian Profession or Modesty, for any professed Christians to imitate Jezebel who Painted her Face, and Ti­red her Head? 2 Kings 9. 30. or to Resemble the strange Woman in Harlots Attire? Prov. 7. 10. a remarkable Character, and distinct from that of Modest Women fearing God.

2d. That of Isaiah 3. Chap. Is very remarkable how highly God was displeased with the Haughtiness and Pride of the Daughter of Zion, among his People Israel of old, with their Vanity and Pride in Apparel &c. that he both Threatned, and brought severe Judgements upon them, to their great debasement, contempt and distress; in so much that the Lord said unto Jerusalem, Thy men shall fall by the Sword, and thy strength in the Battle. Ver. 8. 25.

Then shall her Gates mourn and Lament; and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground. ver. 26. Their Pride and Rebellion was the cause of such their Calamity and Debasement: Because the Daughters of Zion are Haughty, &c. ver. 16. And when the Prophet foretold God's Judgement upon Jerusa­lem, and how he would distress Ariel, and what heaviness and sorrow should be: He also said, Thou shalt be brought down, &c. Thou shalt be visited of the Lord of Hosts with Thunder and with Earth-Quakes, &c. Isa. 29. Oh why are such Ominous Signes, and such eminent Threatning Visits from the Lord of Hosts, (even in our days) no more taken notice of, considered or laid to Heart by many?

3d. Tremble, O Earth (Oh Inhabitants of the Earth) at the pre­sence of the Lord God: Fear and tremble Oh! all Proud flesh at the presence of the God of Jacob; Oh be abased and humbled before the Great and Terrible God, cast off thy costly Ornaments, and Proud At­tire, and sit down in the Dust; Mourn and Lament, and Bewail thy self, and Repent as in Dust and Ashes, because of thy abominable Pride; many and great Provocations against the Lord of Hosts, whose terrible day ap­proacheth. When the Lord threatned to Cut off Idolaters and backsliders that turned back from the Lord, and those that have not sought the Lord nor in­quired after him. Zeph. 1. 4, 5, 6. He also Threatned, saying, And it shall be in the day of the Lord's Sacrifice, that I will visit the Princes and the Kings Children, and all such as are Cloathed with strange Apparel, Zeph. 1. 8. And was there ever any Age or Nation that exceeded this of Our's in Strangeness and folly in Apparel?

4th. And when Jerusalem and the Daughter of Zion were Warned of their Calamities, Misery and Destruction, because of their Pride, Wick­edness and Abominations, it was declared unto them. And when thou shalt be destroyed what wilt thou do? Though thou Cloathest thy self with Scarlet, tho' thou deckest thee with Ornaments of Gold, tho' thou Paintest thy Face with Co­lours, yet shalt thou Trim thy self in vain, &c. Jer. 4. 30.

5th. And now seriously consider the Holy Apostles Exhortation and Counsel in this Case. 1 Tim. 2. 9, 10. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest Apparel, with shame-facedness and Sobriety, not with broi­dered Hair, or Gold or Pearls, or costly Array, But which Becometh Women Professing Godliness with good Works. The like also, in 1 Pet▪ 3 3, 4, 5. Whose Adorning let it not be that outward adorning of Plaiting the Hair, wearing of Gold, or putting on of Apparel, But let it be the hidden man of the Heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the Ornament of a meek and quiet Spirit, which is in the sight of God of great Price. For after this manner in the old Time, the holy Women also who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own Husbands. They did not Adorne themselves with high Heads and Towering Dresses, nor with Spotted or Painted Faces, nor with Foo­lish or Immodest Attire; which things among profest Christians are no small Scandal and Reproach to Religion and Christianity, but against the Honour and Interest thereof, and to the great dishonour of God, and his dear Son Jesus Christ: for which all such kind of Christians (as are thus guilty of this Horrible Souls sinking sin of Pride) are accountable.

And you that are Parents be Examples of Humility and Christianity, and bring up your Children in the Nurture, Instruction and Admonition of the Lord, Ephes. 6. 4. and not in Pride and Vanity▪ in Apparel, nor in Musick and Dancing to expose them to Lightness, Wantonness, Temptation and Ruine, as too too many do; for which they are greatly chargeable with the sins of their Children, and have a heavy Account to give to the Righ­teous God, for being accessary to their Ruine and Destruction.

Oh Inhabitants of London and England, who are concerned in this pro­voking sin of Pride, Excess, and Foolishness, return to the Light of Christ, his Grace and Truth in you, and humble your selves under the mighty hand of God, and break off your Sins by true and unfeigned Repentance, that you may find mercy in Christ Jesus, and for his sake; That God in Compassion may turne away his Wrath, and avert his Judgements threatned and impending over these Nations.

From a real Friend to our Nation, and the Souls of all People. G. W.

LICENSED July the 18. 1693.

Sold by Randal Tayler near Stationers-Hall, 1693.

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