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Remarkable Iudgments of GOD, Related & Improved.

[The First SERMON.]


My Flesh Trembleth for Fear of Thee, and I am Afraid of Thy Judgments.

IT cannot be said of any man, as it is [...] of the Levi [...]than, He [...] made without [...] But Fea [...], is one of th [...]e Natural Passi [...] ▪ which th [...] Maker of man hath infus'd [...] to him, to move him in the matters [...] his Happiness. And [...]ndeed, if the Spirit [...] man, were destitute [...] all Fear, it would wa [...] [...] Sinew, needful to manage him in many of [...] motions. But this Affection of our Fear, [...] which we have such Apprehensions of Evils [...] Fly from them, as 'tis useful unto us in all [...] concerns, thus 'tis of most Eminent Use [...] in the Concerns of Religion. Without the [...] of some Fear, no Real Religion can be [...]: [Page 4] If we would Serve the Lord, it must be with Fear: If we would keep the Commandments of God, it is our Fear of Him that will be, Custos utriusque Tabulae:

In the Sacred Oracle now before us, behold, such a Fear Exemplified! Solomon the Wise, once wrote that Maxim of Wisdom, Happy is the man that Feareth alwayes. And he had the Exemple of his Blessed Father, to Inform him of, and confirm him in, such a Maxim. David was as great an Instance of undaunted Valour and Cou­ [...]age, as perhaps any that ever Lived; His Forti­ude was Heroical. Yet we find him Fearing Al­ [...]ayes: And well might he Fear, when he had [...]ch a Formidable Object for his Fear, as that [...]hich is proposed, in the Text now before us.

The Psalmist, in our Context, is making his [...]bservations upon the Dispensations of the God [...] Heaven towards ungodly men on earth. Un­ [...]dly men had been very High in their Worldly [...]vancements, and Advantages, but, saith he, [...], I see Thee Treading of them down! Ungod­ [...] men had cleaved unto the People of God, as [...] they had been of one Metal with them, and [...] Fate, and Lot had been one; but saith he, [...], I see Thee putting them away like Dross! Now [...] is a Twofold Use, which the Psalmist makes [...]hese Observations. One is, Love. Therefore I [...] thy Testimonies▪ Another is Fear. My Flesh [...] for fear of Thee, and I am afraid of thy [Page] Judgments. The Degree of the Fear thus Ex­pressed, is Remarkable. One of the Ancients who understood Hebrew, as few of them did, renders it, Horripilavit caro mea: q. d. My Hair even stands on End with Fear. And the Septua­gint renders it, My Flesh is pierced with Fear, as with Nailes. But there is no need of Evaporating our Discourse, in Criticisms, on the Language of our Text; The plain Language, and the Doctrine of it, is, That a Very Trembling Fear of God in His Judg­ments, is what All men should, and what Goo [...] men will, have their Souls, Exceedingly Aw [...] withal.

If you will Hear the Summ of the Matt [...] there is this


To be distinctly, with all due Brevity, spo [...] unto.

What is the Tremblin [...] Fear of God in His [...], which is to be Entertained in our [...] And so, What are those Judgments of [...] whereof it becomes us, with a Trembling [...] to be Afraid?

Behold, the Steps, by which we shall arriv [...] a full Answer of the Important Case, thus [...] us.

I. The Fear of God, Comprehends the [...] [Page] of that Religion, whereto the Will of God obligeth us. Indeed, in a Natural Fear, we are carried From what we Fear ▪ But a Gracious Fear will carry us To the God, who is therein Our Fear: To Fear God, is to Choose Him, to Love Him, to Trust Him, to Seek Him, and to Draw Near unto Him. In this Fear of God, there is presupposed, a Sense of God. We must be none of those Fools, who say, There is no God. Our Fear of God, must not be, as of an Imaginary Being, or of the fright­ful Non-Entities which the Feeble Spirits of Chil­ [...]ren are Scared withal. We are to be well satis­ [...]ed, and we have all possible Demonstrations, to [...]tisfy us, That there is a God, whose Kingdom Rul­ [...]th over all. But then,

First, There is in the Fear of God, a Reverent [...]espect and Regard, unto all that ha's the Name [...] God upon it. We must have such a Fear of [...] in us, that our God may speak of us, in that [...], in Mal. 4.2. You Fear my Name. We [...] have none but Fit, that is to say, Holy, and [...] Resentments of all those Things, where [...] [...] Great God makes Himself known unto us. [...] Titles we must mention with Honour; His [...] we must Adore, with all Affection; [...] Appointments we must Approach, with all [...]. We should be Sollicitous, that God may [...]orifyed, not only by our selves, but also by [...] World about us. Hallow'd be Thy Name, [...] the First Petition of our Souls.

[Page 7]Secondly; There is in the Fear of God, a Stu­dious Concern and Caution, to Avoid all that Sin­ful Evil by which the Law of God is Transgressed. We must have that Fear of God, whereto we are [...]vised, in Prov. 16.6. By the Fear of the Lord▪ men Depart from Evil. We should Fly from every known Sin, as from a deadly Serpent, or Poison, because of the Offence thereby given to that God, who hath no pleasure in Wickedness. When wee see others do any thing that is forbidden and con­demned in the Edicts of God, we should be able to say, as Nehemiah of old, But so do not I, because I have the Fear of God! When others urge us to do any thing amiss, we should Reply like Joseph I dare not Commit such Things, for I Fear God And therefore, the Anger of God should be th [...] Terror of our Souls: We should rather incur an [...] Miseries than procure that Anger, which [...] strongest Mountains cannot stand before; a [...]count it a fearful Thing to fall into the Hand▪ the Living God.

Thirdly. In the Fear of God, there is a Fil [...] Care, to yield Him that Service, and Worship, whi [...] may be Pleasing unto Him. In the Fear of Go [...] we must Obey Him with our Service. The A [...]gels of Heaven, who move the Wheels in the [...] Changes on Earth, when they stood in their [...] vice before the Throne of God, which had [...] Appearance of Fire round about Him, they Let [...] their Wings, at His Voice, in the Vision of [...] [Page 8] In Allusion hereunto, the Apostle, speaking unto Believers, that are to be as the Angels, in the Kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ, which cannot be moved, sayes, in Heb. 12.28, 29. Serve God Ac­ceptably, with Reverence and with Godly Fear: For our God is a Consuming Fire In the Fear of God, we must Renounce the Service of all our Idols; We must no more Humour the Flesh, no more Follow the World, no more Gratify the Devil. And we must now so Devote our selves unto the Service of God, that we may be able to say, Lord, I am thy Servant, Devoted unto thy Fear! He is to be our Master; and we should leave no Room for that Expostulation, Where is my Fear? And, [...]n the Fear of God, we must Address Him with our Worship. The Proselytes, which came in to Embrace the True Worship of God, have this Distinction, in Psal. 115.11. Yee that Fear the [...]ord. In the Fear of God, we must Worship Him, [...]ho is Worthy to be Feared; and both the Natural, [...]nd the Instituted Worship of God, is to be con­ [...]inually performed with us, we are to be, as he [...]nce was, Devout Persons, who Fear God, and Pray [...]lwayes unto Him.

All this is Comprised, in the Fear of God. And [...]et, you have no Right Notion of it, if a CHRIST [...] left out of the Notion. There is a Faith im­ [...]yed in this Fear. The Fear of God, is after all, [...] be thus described, and never fully, till thus de­ [...]ibed, unto us: Tis, Even such a Dread of the [Page 9] Divine Displeasure at Sin, as Drives us to our Lord Jesus Christ, for Salvation from Sin, and from the Displeasure of God against us for it. There never was any true Fear of God, in the Dayes of the Old Testament, but such as thought of and ran to a Messiah, as the Deliverer from the Wrath of God; and all the Fear of God, in the Dayes of the New Testament ▪ acknowledges our Blessed Jesus as that Messiah. This is that Fear of God, which is the Beginning of Wisdom: This is tha [...] Fear of God, wherein all men should be all the Day Long. This is the Fear of God, wherein we should continue all the Dayes that we Live upon the Earth. If thou dost not Walk in this Fear of God, O Man, Let thy Flesh Tremble for Fear, and be afraid of the Judgments, whereto thou dost make thy self ob­noxious. But this leads us to a further Conside­ration.

II. Unto the Fear of God, we are by the consi­deration of His Judgments to be Awakened: and we should therefore be struck with a very Trembling Fear of those Judgments. Now, the Judgments of God, are capable of a Distribution▪ into Judicia Judicantia, and, Judicia Judicata, Judgments Denounced, and Judgments Inflicted: Judgments in the Commination, and Judgments in the Accomplishment: The Declaration of Divine Judgments, and the Execution of Divine Judg [...]ments. With an Eye to this Distribution, there are these Counsils, which from the Great God of Judgment, are to be given you.

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The First Counsil.

Let us with a very Trembling Fear, be Afraid of the Judgments that are pronounced against the Ungodly, in the Book of God. There are used in our Longest and Sweetest Psalm, no less than Twelve several words, to signify the Reve­lation which God had made of His Purpose, to Save men, by that Son of a Virgin, who was to break the Old Serpents Head: And one of those words, is, JUDGMENTS. This then is the In­fluence, which the Judgments of God, or the Discoveries which He has made of Himself in this Book of His, must have upon us: we should be able to say, as in Psal. 119.161. Lord, My Heart stands in Awe of thy Word. Are there any Prae­cepts in this Book? we should Fear the Command­ment: Fear, and Cry, Lord, I am afraid of break­ing thy Holy Laws, that are so Holy and Just and Good! Are there any Promises in this Book? We should Fear, Lest we fall short of them. Are there any Threatnings in this Book? We should Fear, Lest they take hold of us. Before every thing in [...]he Book of God, we should have the same Dis­position, that Josiah had, when the Book of Deu­teronomy was Read unto him; [The Jews have a Tradition, that by the special Disposal of Di­vine Providence, the first place, which the Reader [...]itt upon, was Deut. 28.36.] That it may be said unto us, Thy Heart was Tender, and thou didst Humble thy self before God, when thou didst Hear [Page 11] His Words. We should be Apprehensive of the Almighty God, speaking in every Line of this Book; and then, be Afraid, Lest all the Plagues written in this Book, overtake us, if we sin against such a God. It was the Character of our Lord Jesus Christ, in Isa. 66 2. He that is o [...] a poor and a contrite Spirit, and who Tremb [...]eth at my Word. When we see what Judgments, the Word of God has Threatened against the Children of Disobedi­ence, we should even fall a Trembling at them. And especially they that are conscious to a course [...]f Disobedience against God, should be Afraid of these Judgments. When Belshazzar saw upon the Wall, an Hand-writing, which he could not Read, (because, perhaps, the Letters were so in­ [...]olded one among another, that except a man had the Key of the Cyphar, the Sentence was not easy to be Uncyphared,) he was wonderfully Terrified at what he saw. Unbelievers may Read [...]hat Hand-writing in this Book, If any man Believe [...]ot the Son, the Wrath of God abideth on him: and [...]ill you not be Afraid of that Wrath? Impenitents [...]ay Read that Hand writing in this Book, The Lord will wound such an one, as goeth on still in his Trespasses: and will you not be Afraid of that [...]ound? The Prayerless may in this Book Read [...]at Hand-writing, The Wicked shall be Turned into [...]ell, and all they that Forget God: and will they [...]ot be Afraid of that Hell; or, Fear Him, who is [...]ble to cast Body and Soul into Hell? I say unto you, [Page 12] Fear Him; and, Oh! be Afraid of these Judg­ments.

The Second Counsil.

Let us with a very Trembling Fear be Afraid of Judgments that shall be pronounced upon the Ungodly in the Day of God. It is a Truth whereof we are very sure, The God of Truth has given us Assurance of it; That He hath Ap­pointed a Day, in which He will Judge the World in Righteousness, by our Lord Jesus Christ. Now, in the Remembrance of this Day, when the King­dom that was promised unto the Seed of David, shall be Erected, it is said, in Eccl. 12.13, 14. Fear God, for God will bring every work into Judg­ment. We must expect the Approach of, a Day, wherein the Quickning and Wondrous Voice of our Lord Jesus Christ, will Raise us out of our Graves; a Day wherein a Doom of Everlasting Punishment, or of Life Eternal, will be passed up­on us; a Day wherein, as the Apostle speaks, We must all Appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ, that every one may receive such things in the Body, according to what he hath done: [for thus I choose to render i [...].] Now, Let us Fear the Judgments, which on this Terrible Day of Judg­ment, our Lord Jesus Christ, will dispense unto the World. Of these Judgments it is, that a Great Minister of our Lord, could say, in 2 Cor. 5.11. Knowing the Terror of the Lord, we perswade men. There is a Terror in those Judgments; Oh! [Page 13] Let this Terror now perswade us, to pursue after an Interest in Him that is to be our Judge: and Let it perswade us, to Repent of the Sins which our Judge will else Damn us to Endless Confusi­on for. When a Pagan Faelix, was told of the Judgments which the Notable Day of God, will produce upon mankind, it is said, He trembled. What; shall we be worse than that unhappy Pa­gan? When God was only publishing His Judg­ments, on the Burning Mountain, we are told, So terrible was the Sight, that Moses said, I exceed­ingly Fear and Quake. And shall not we Exceed­ingly Fear and Quake, when we Think on the Day, when our Lord Jesus Christ will descend from Heaven, in Flaming Fire, to pour out His Judgments, and, Behold, the Lord comes, with My­riads of His Saints, to Execute Judgment upon all! Certain I am, All this Lower World, will be sur­prised with an Horrible Fright, at that Great Revolution: An Horrible Tempest will then be Rain'd from Heaven upon this World: The Earth will Shake and Tremble, the foundations of the Hills also will move and be shaken, when our Lord shall Bow the Heavens, and come down, with a Devour­ing Fire about Him. So then, Let us now Shake and Tremble at the Contemplation thereof. Be Afraid, Lest we be found among the Ungodly, that shall not stand in the Judgment. Be Afraid, Lest our Judgment then be, that of the Devil and his Angels. 'Tis a thing which I have given me [Page 14] in Charge▪ Some Save with Fear, pulling them out of the Fire. Wherefore I say unto you, Souls, Be Afraid, Lest we be Adjudged unto the Venge­ance of Eternal Fire, even, to the Fire of the Ven­geance of God throughout Eternal Ages.

The Third Counsil.

There are Astonishing Judgments, dispensed by the Hand of God, upon others in this World; and with a very Trembling Fear, we should be Afraid of those Judgments. The Dispensations of God, unto a Sinful World, are such as give us that Invitation, in Psal. 66.5. Come and see the Works of God, for He is Terrible in His Doing to­wards the Children of men. 'Tis our Duty now, to be Afraid of those Judgments, under which we see the Children of men suffering, by the Terrible Dispensations of God; I do not mean, that we should Live in a Slavish Fear, of all Fear­ful Accidents, but that we should be Awakened unto the Fear of God, by what we see. Our Du­ty is described unto us, in Isa 26.9. When thy Judgments are in the Earth, the Inhabitants of the World will Learn Righteousness. And now, Let us proceed by these Rules, in this our Duty.

The First Rule.

There is one thing in the Judgments of God, whereof we should alwayes be Afraid; that is, Lest we do make an Injudicious Interpretation of them. It is a caution given to us, in Psal. 36.6. Thy Judgments are a great Deep, O Lord; [Page 15] And we should be very cautious, Lest we drown our selves in such a Deep, when we go to Fathom it. The Judgments of God are those things, whereof 'tis said, Whose is Wise will Observe those things; but then we must be careful to proceed wisely in our observing of them. 'Tis a Dange­rous Thing for us, to indulge our own Fancy, & much more, for us to indulge our own Passion, in making of Glosses upon the Judgments of G [...]d: God will not hold the man guiltless, who shall so take His Name in vain. Very sad Things may befal the People of God, which if we should call them the Judgments of God, upon them, for some crime or other, this would be as great a crime in us▪ as to Adulterate the Coin of the Nation. The Soveraign God, has made a Cross, to be necessary for all the Disciples of Him, who Dy'd upon the Cross; and He will in His Infinite Soveraignty, make choice of their Cross for them, to Exercise their Virtue, and prepare them and [...]ipen them, for His Heavenly Kingdom. If we should be so wicked, as to suppose a Curse of God upon all that we see under the Cross, Behold, we should wickedly offend against the Generation of the Children of God. When the Sons of that Excellent Mini­ster of God, Aaron the Priest of the Lord, came to an untimely End, it had been a vile Impiety in the Congregation of Israel, to have persecuted their Worthy and Aged Father, with any Cen­sorious Imputations The Judgments of God are [Page] like to arrest none sooner, than the Rash Exposi­tors of His Judgments on other men. The Jea­lous God, will soon Draw near in Judgment, unto those who Persecute them whom He hath Smitten, and who Talk to the Grief of those whom He hath Wounded ▪ Our Lord has given us, a most whole­some Admonition, to be generally made use of, when sore Disasters happen unto any of our Neighbours, in Luk. 13.4, 5. Think ye, that these were Sinners, above all others; I tell you▪ Nay. But what shall we then do, to Determine a Judgment of God, upon a Sinner, for his being so? I an­swer First, The Sin of the Sinner must be evi­dent, from the Scripture of God, before we may dare to Apply a Judgment of God; unto him. 'Tis very preposterous, for us, first of all to take it for granted, This or that Calamity is a Judg­ment of God for some Iniquity; and then, upon this presumption, to Search out that Iniquity. And Secondly, A Judgment of God, for Sin, must be clothed with some convincing circumstance and Character upon it self, Reasonably to speak its being so, before we may venture to call it so. There must be something in the Time of it, or in the Place of it, or, in its Resemblance to the Fault for which it comes, or in the Confessi­on of the person Chastised, that shall make the Conscience to say, [...] are the plain Signatures of a Judgment for some Sin, in the Stroke now given by God! Having first Laid in this Antidote against [Page 17] Rash Judgments of our own, about the Great Judg­m [...]nts of God, we may safely go on, to say;

The Second Rule.

The Judgments of God in Former Ages, They should make us Afraid of the Sins which procur­ed those Judgments. There came the Judgments of God upon the Murmurous Israelites; 'Tis said in 1 Cor. 10.11. All these things happened unto them, for Examples, and they are written for our Admonition. Behold those Judgments then, and be Afraid of all Murmuring, be Afraid of all Impatience, be Afraid of all Discontent un­der the Difficulties of a Wilderness, Lest we be Destroy'd of the Destroyer. There came the Judg­ments of God upon the Debauched Sodomites; 'Tis said in 2 Pet. 2.6. God made them an Example unto those that after should Live Ungodly. Behold those Judgments then, and be Afraid of all De­bauchery, be Afraid of all Uncleanness, be Afraid of all Intemperance, Lest God condemn us with a Fiery and an Early Overthrow. Syrs, The Hi­story which the Bible hath given us, of the Judg­men [...]s which have come from God, upon them that Sinn'd against Him, 'tis not only a Chronicle of what is past, but also a Calender of what is to come. We have the History; There we may Consider the Dayes of Old, the Years of Ancient Times. But when we do so, Let us be Afraid. Lest by Repeating of Old Sins, we bring a Repe­tition of Old Plagues upon our selves. When [Page 18] Thunder and Lightning from Heaven, suddenly calcin'd a poor Woman into a Lump of Salt, for her Coveteousness, near three Thousand and Eight Hundred Years ago, that Salt was to Sea­son us with a Fear, Lest near the Time of the End, we perish like her; by setting our Hearts upon the World. Our Lord therefore said, on that occasion, in Luk. 17.32. Remember Lots Wife. Thus, I may say, Remember Judas, and be A­fraid, Lest we perish as he did in betraying the Interests of the Lord Jesus Christ, for some Worldly Benefit Remember Herod, and be Afraid, Lest we perish as he did, in proud affectations of what belongs not unto us. Remember all the rest.

The Third Rule.

The Judgments of God on other places, They should make us Afr [...]id, Lest we fall within the Circuit of those Judgments. When the Judg­ments of God, have begun their Walk, we have cause to be Afraid, Lest we fall into their Walk; because, with us, even with us also, there are Sins against the Lord our God. It was prophesied, in Jer. 25.32. Thus saith the Lord of Hosts, Behold, Evil shall go forth from Nation to Nation. Do we Behold other Nations, grievously sharing in Distress of Nations, and great perplexity, we should be Afraid Lest we also have our share in the Distressing Judgments of God. Have the Judgments of God, sent War, and Poverty and Scarcity, upon other Nations? We have cause to [Page 19] be Afraid Lest the Evil of those Judgments reach unto our selves; and lest we Drink of that Cup of Trembling, which God seems to be putting into the Hands of all the Nations. A Fire on one House alarums all the Town. The Judgments of God have set all Europe on Fire; yea, the Sparks are flown over into America: Lamentable Deso­lations have been made both Northward & South­ward of us; Be Afraid then, O poor people of God, Lest thou also become Desolate. When the Judgments of God, were in their course, He said unto His people, in Zeph. 3.6, 7. I have cut off the Nations, their Towers are Desolate, their Cities are Destroyed: I said, Surely Thou wilt Fear me. Thus, Do We see Destructions come upon other Countreys? Our God says thereupon, Surely, This Country too should be Afraid, Lest I bring the like upon them.

The Fourth Rule.

The Judgments of God, seizing upon a Few per­sons only, before our Eyes, They should make us Afraid, Lest we be the Next, that those Judg­ments do seiz upon. When One Malefactor dyed it was said, All the People shall Hear and Fear. Thus, if the Judgments of God single out one Malefact­or, to punish him, His voice is, Let all be Afraid! It is noted of a miserable Minister, who falling into a Scandal, was presently overwhelmed by the Judgments of God, in Act. 5.5. Great Fear came upon all them that Heard these things. When the [Page 20] Judgments of God, had signalized themselves up­on any Scandalous Wretches, we should all be struck, with a Great Fear, Lest our Sins Expose us also to the Signal Rebukes of Heaven. As, if one Drunkard in a Town be Drowned, it is a Loud Sermon to all the Bruits about the Town, to be Afraid, of being so cut off in their Bruitish Follies: Thus, in all the Special Judgments of God upon any Offenders whatsoever, there is that voice from Heaven to all such Offenders, Tremble, and Repent, Lest all of you likewise perish! Yea, The Judgments of God upon a Few, often should be seriously pondered by the Whole Body of the People, whom they belong unto, as a Decimati­on made by that God, who gives none Account of His matters. God hath a Controversy with the Whole Body of the People; He might have pitch'd upon me or thee, to have been the Subjects, on which he does manage this Controversy, as well as any other of our Neighbours. Oh! what cause have we now to be Afraid, of what we also have to meet withal! When the Judgments of God fol­lowed one man aboard the Vessel, bound for Tar tessus, 'tis said, in Jon. 1.16. All the other men, feared the Lord exceedingly. Truly, If any one man aboard the Vessel of the Publick, be follow'd with a Storm of Judgments from God, it becomes us all, to Fear Exceedingly!

The Fifth Rule.

When Things that look like Judgments of God, [Page 21] befal the dear people of God, it highly concerns o­ther people to be Afraid, of the Greater Judgments, which they may reasonably Look for. 'Tis an In­ference, whereto we are Directed, in 1 Pet. 4.17. Judgment must begin at the House of God, — And if the Righteous scarcely be Saved, where shall the Un­godly and the Sinner appear? Which is but the Translation of what we have in Prov. 11.31. Be­hold▪ the Righteous shall be Recompenced in the Earth; much more the Wicked and the Sinner. Sometimes the most Eminent Christians in a Land, yea, and whole Churches of such Christians, meet with Troublesome Difficulties, in their way to Salva­tion: yea, they meet with Troubles upon Earth ▪ that seem to be Recompences from Heaven upon them, for their miscarriages. Come Let all Un­godly Sinners now be Afraid: I that never was Re­conciled unto God, by the Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ; what, what will become of me, throughout the Dayes of Eternity! Our Saviour has taught us to Argue thus, upon the Afflictions of Good men; If these things be done to the Green Tree, what shall be done to the Dry? Those men that bring forth much of that Fruit, whereby God is Glorified, are cast into a Fire of many Afflictions. Yea, but you then that bring forth No Fruit, or [...]ll Fruit, and never were United unto the Lord Jesus Christ, what a Formidable, Intolerable, Interminable Fire, is Reserved for you! Oh! be Afraid of that Fire! That Blessed Prophet of God, even Ezeki­kiel, [Page 22] must have the best Thing in his Family, snatch'd out of it, by the stroke of Death: Be­hold, I take away from thee, the Desire of thine Eyes, with a stroke; yet shall not thy Tears run down saith the Lord. And what? was this a Judgment on the Prophet? It seem'd so; But it was indeed a Warning to the people; of whom the Lord then said, in Ezek. 24.24. Ezekiel is a Sign unto you: According to all that he hath done, shall ye do. Syrs, Those things that appear like Judgments of God, upon His own Faithful Servants, they are awful Warnings unto those that Serve Him not: God therein says unto Profane, Christless, and Grace­less Creatures; If I do these things to those whom yet I pity as a Father does the Children that serve him, what shall I do unto you, that are my Enemies, and that Serve none but my Greatest Enemy? What shall I do unto you? Wretches, what shall I do unto you? If God have such Rods for His Dutiful Children, what Scourges, what Scorpions, hath He for His Adversaries!

The Sixth Rule.

Among all the Judgments of God, I know none more Tremendous, than His leaving here and there some Famous Professors and Pretenders of Religion, to some Horribly Irreligious Actions. When we see [...]ose Judgments, Then, Then above all, should our Flesh Tremble for Fear of God, and we should be afraid of His Judgments. Tis a Thing, that sometimes does happen among us. Persons [Page 23] that have been Exemplary for Piety & Charity all their Dayes, yet have at last grown Melancholy, & God hath so left them to the Possession of some Devil, that they have laid Violent Hands upon themselves; they have Starv'd themselves, Hang'd themselves, Drown'd themselves, yea, and had a Preternatural Assistence in their doing of it. Who can Behold these unaccountable Tragaedies with­out that out cry, Lord, I am afraid of thy Judg­ments! What Use can we make of these Tragi­cal Things, but that in 1 Pet. 1.17. To pass the Time of our Sojourning here in Fear? What, but that in Phil. 2.12. To work out our own Salvation with Fear & Trembling? And, alas, what shall we say, of those Prodigious Falls into Sin, which the Lives of some that were counted First-rate Christians, have been Reproached withal? What shall we say, Oh! our God, what shall we say, of the mon­strous Crimes, which we have seen some that have seem'd Pillars of Christianity among us, to fall in­to? This I will say; That the Burning Wrath of a Righteous and a Terrible God, ha's never been so much discovered, in all our Losses by Sea and Land, and in all the bloody Depredations of our Adversaries, as in this One Thing: That ever now and then some one or other, that ha's been much Noted for Zeal in the wayes of God, ha's been found in some Damnable Act of Wickedness. There is the very Venome and Spirit of Hell, in these Judgments of God upon a Land; God would ne­ver [Page 24] have permitted these Judgments, if there were not a Generation of His Wrath, to be praecipitated down into the fiery Bottom of Hell, by His Wrath, so Darkning of the Land. Infinitely better had it been for those Woful men, to have Dy'd with Milstones about their Necks, many years ago, than thus to have Offended and Poisoned the Souls of Multitudes; And, Oh! Wo, Wo, unto multi­tudes of Souls, that have hence taken an Incurea­ble and an Everlasting Offence, against the Blessed wayes of our Lord Jesus Christ. Sirs, When a provoked God, shall permit the Dragon to Sweep Starrs down from Heaven with his Tail, and permit the Devil to Enter and Possess and befool, and be­ [...]o [...], and confound, such as have made a show of a more Heavenly Frame than other men, how can we forbear crying out, Lord, I am afraid of thy Judgments! What sayes the Apostle, in Rom. 11.20. Thou standest by Faith: Be not High minded, but Fear? Oh! Be afraid, Be afraid, lest by some Se­cret Sin, we grieve the Holy Spirit of God. If He withdraw, Ah! Lord, who, shall stand?

The Seventh Rule.

There is a peculiar concernment lying upon the Young People, among us▪ to be Afraid of those Judgments, in which they see the Great God con­suming of our Young People, with His Fiery Indig­nation. It may be said, about the Young men of N Eng. as it was of old said about the Young men of Israel, in Psal. 78.63. The Fire Consumed their Young m [...]n. And as when the earth Swallowed up some [Page 25] Young People in the Wilderness of old, it is said, The Rest Fled at the cry of them, saying, Lest the earth Swallow us up also. Behold, O our Young Folks, the Earth, and the Sea, and the Pit, have been terribly Swallowing up your B [...]ethren. Fly then, with affrighted Souls, Fly, to the Lord Jesus Christ, and say, Lord, I am afraid lest thy Judg­ments do Swallow me up also. Young People, O that you would suitably lay to Heart, the Dread­ful Judgments of God, which are Consuming of your Generation among us. Behold, Vain Youths, Behold, how the Wasting Judgments of God have been upon you, till we cry out, The Curse ha's de­voured our Land, and few Young men are Left!

Know you not, That when our Young men have been Pressed into the Wars, they have been but Numbred for the Slaughter? and brought forth for the Murderer? Know you not, That our Young men hoping to mend their Condition at Sea, have but Sail'd the sooner to their Long Home, in Running Abroad? Know you not, That the Angels of Death have struck our Young Folks, with the Arrowes of Death in Epidemical Sicknesses? Know you not, That one strange Casualty after another, brings many of our most Hopeful Young Folks to an un­timely End? And Oh! how doleful, doleful Things have our Young People seen, when they have been Captives, in the Hands of Barbarous Infidels? The Canibals of the East, have hideously Tormented them; and as far off as the Scorching [Page 26] Tents of Africa, they have been fainting under the bitter Servitude of Mahometans.

Come then, Be afraid, O our Young People; Job could say, Destruction from God was a Terror to me. Be Terrified, Young People, with a Fear, lest a Destruction from God come upon you, in and for your Sins. Be afraid of continuing Estranged from the Sheltering Wings of your Lord-Redeemer, lest you [...]ly open to the Storms of the Judgments of God. Be afraid of Neglecting the Great Salva­tion, which the Lord Jesus Christ hath so often offered you, lest the Judgments of God bring a Great Destruction upon you. Be afraid of all Fil­thiness, and all Profaneness, and all Disobedience, and all Bad-Company, and all the Courses of Dishonesty, lest by the Judgments of God, you Dy before your Time, for your being Wicked overmuch. Oh! Fear, and Flee Youthful Lusts; And now Remember your Creator in the Dayes of your Youth, lest the Judgments of God, bring Evil Dayes upon you.

[The Second SERMON.]

BUT I intend all this Discourse, as only an Introduction unto a more Entertaining Re­capitulation of the Divine Judgments, which we have seen Executed upon Several Sorts of Sinners, among our Selves. It cannot but be much for the Glory of our Lord JESUS CHRIST, who from His Glorious High Throne dispensed these [Page 27] Judgments: It cannot but be a Satisfaction unto the Good Angels of the Lord, who are oftentimes the Executioners of these Judgments: It is an Holy Undertaking, and it cannot but Serve the Interests of Holiness; to make our modest Observations, upon the Judgments of God, which have been Executed among us. As far as it may be Conve­nient in this Discourse, I will now Address my self unto this undertaking. Sirs, Give me your Attention.

When that Great Man, the Emperour Mauritius, beheld his Family overwhelmed in terrible Cala­mities and Five Hopeful Branches of his Family Slain before his Eyes, he humbly Recited those words of the Psalmist, in Psal. 119 137▪ Righteous art Thou, O Lord, and Right are thy Judgments. My Neighbours, We have ever now and then, those Calamitous Things before our Eyes in our Neighbourhood, which, if we are not blind, we must pronounce, The Right Judgments of a Righte­ous God. And I must now ask you, to take some Notice of those Judgments.

I do most readily grant, that, Lubricus hic L [...]cus ac difficilis, tis no easy matter to Observe the Judg­ments of God; We shall easily fall into the Extreams, of being either too Censorious, and Fanciful, or else too Negligent, in our Observation of the Divine Judgments. But yet the Judgments of God, some­times and so circumstanced, that, He who runs may Read them; and our Duty thereupon is described, [Page 28] in Psal. 64.9. All men shall fear, and they shall de­clare the work of God, for they shall wisely consider of His doing. Learned men have complain'd of it, as a Defect in the Historical part of Learning, that there is not Extant an Impartial and a well-attested Historia Nemeseos, or, Account of Remar­kable Judgments on Scandalous & Notorious Of­fendors. Yea, the God of Heaven Himself com­plains of it, when men do not Regard His works, e­ven, the operation of His Hands.

I will now therefore, with all Faithfulness, lay before you, some of those Remarks, which I have made upon the Judgments of God, that have been Executed in this Land. Sirs, The Lord ha's been Known by His Executing of these Judgments; Ac­company them, with your Meditations! You shall Hear nothing but what ha's had Sufficient Evi­dence: And certainly, I should be afraid of Speak­ing Wickedly for God, or Talking Deceitfully for Him!

The First Remark.

Take a due and a deep Notice, I beseech you, of the Notable Judgments with which we have seen the Contempt of the Glorious Gospel, Revenged by the God of Glory. We have seen the Gospel, or, the Tidings of Salvation by the Lord Jesus Christ, for Miserable Sinners, Graciously Offered; We have seen the Offer of this Gospel, most ungratefully Refused; But of this Refusal, what Event have we seen? Truly, A very Terrible Event. I Re­member a passage of Scripture, which runs thus in [Page 29] our Translation, Isa. 2.22. Cease ye from man, whose Breath is in his Nostrils; for wherein is he to be accounted of? But, if you please, you may thus understand it. The Prophet is denouncing the Judgments of God, upon the Jewes, for their Des­pising of the Messiah; and the Denunciati [...]n is thus Concluded: Now forbear as to that man, [or, cease from Offending and Provoking of Him,] who is now very Angry, [which the Hebrewes Express, by Breathe in the Nostrils,] for none is able to de­clare, how high an Account is to be made of Him. Sirs, We have seen the God of Heaven very Ang­ry; He ha's Breathed the Hot Lightnings of Death, out of His Nostrils; when People have made no Account of the Lord Jesus Christ, and of His Gospel. We have seen These Four or Five Remarkables among the rest.

For a First Instance.

The Nation of the Narragansetts, was one of the most populous and power [...]ul among all the Indians, that once filled this mighty Wilderness. Unto that woful Nation, the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, was freely Tendered▪ but they with much Affront, and Contempt, Rejected it. An Holy man, then famous throughout our Church­es, hereupon uttered a Speech to this purpose, I speak altogether without the Spirit of God, if this Na­tion be not quickly and strangely destroy'd. It was not long, before this Nation, much against the Advice, of the more Aged men among them, [Page 30] engaged in Acts of Hostility against our people. Whereupon, ours, with a Force much Inferiour unto theirs, but with a marvellous valour and suc­cess, in the Depth of Winter, made a Descent up­on them. The Glorious Lord Jesus Christ, whom they had Slighted, was with our Army, and the Day was wonderfully carried against the Tawny Infidels. Their City was Laid in Ashes; Above Twenty of their Chief Captains were Killed; a proportionable Desolation cut off the Inferiour Salvages: Mortal Sickness, and Horrid Famine, pursued the Remainders of them: So that we can hardly tell, where any of them are left alive up­on the Face of the Earth. Such was thy speedy Vengeance, O Blessed JESUS, on the Heathen that would not know thee, nor call upon thy Name.

For a Second Instance.

That Renowned Evangelist of our Indians, the Reverend ELIOT, Preached the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, unto Philip, the Prince of the Wompanoags; but that Monster pulling of a But­ton on the Good mans Coat, said, He did not va­lue what he Preach'd any more than that? and he hindred his Abject Subjects from Embracing the Christian Religion, that they might not become the Subjects of our Lord Jesus Christ. But what is become of them all? They rashly praecipitated themselves into a Rebellious War against the En­glish: And at Last, Philip fell into all the Distres­ses, that could be imagined. One of his own [Page 31] Vassals then ran away from him, and informed the English where he was; They came upon him in his Thicket, just as he was telling his Coun­sellors of his Dream, that he was fallen into our Hands; while he endeavoured an Escape, an In­dian Shot him thro' the Heart, whereof he Died immediately; nor is any Number of his people now left any where in the World. So do the Re­jecters of thy Grace, perish, O Lord!

For a Third Instance.

But the Indian Salvages, are not the only Instan­ces of the Divine Revenges, w [...]ich have Ensued on mens Undervaluing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, among us. Trave [...] with me, Syrs, to the Eastern Parts of this Province; O come & behold the Works of the Lord, the Desolations He has made in those parts of the Earth. Twice has that brave Countrey, been occupied with Hopeful Set­tlements. Hopeful! No, No; call them not Hope­ful; inasmuch as the Ordinances of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, were not settled among them. Hence, Twice has that Countrey now be [...]n made an Aceldama; and the Settlements have all been broken up, for many scores of Miles together. The Jealousy of the Neglec­ted Lord Jesus Christ, has broke forth, like an Unquenchable Fire against those Plantations; the Fiery Wrath of Heaven has brought a Swift De­struction upon them. A Barbarous Enemy has once and again, broke in upon those Towns, like [Page 32] an Irresistible Torrent, carrying all before it, un­til they come to those Towns, where the Ordi­nances of the Gospel are more upheld, and, be­hold, there they find a Barriere, which they can­not yet get over; There the Spirit of the Lord lifts up a Standard against them! In one of those Plantations, there had newly been very prodigi­ous Discoveries of Enmity against the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, which had been sometimes among them: And a bloody Adversary soon sur­prised them, and Captived and Slaughtered the most of them, and Laid their Habitations in Ash­es, and horribly Roasted alive some of the Inha­bitants. Tremble, O ye people of the South, when you are told of this!

For a Fourth Instance.

And there is another Contempt of the Gospel, which we have often seen another way chastised among us. Our Lord Jesus Christ hath said con­cerning the Faithful Ministers of His Gospel, in Luk. 10.16. He that Despiseth you, Despiseth me. When the Ministers of the Gospel, are Holy Pray­erful, Painful, Watchful, and Fruitful Servants of the Lord Jesus Christ, and men Filled and Acted with His Holy Spirit: We have seen the Judg­ments of God many a Time, Arresting those that have Abused these Embassadors from the King of Heaven. Thus, there have been Angry men a­mong us, who have sat over their Cups, Railing at such or such a Minister of God, and Hoping [Page 33] e're long to see the Death of him▪ In a little while they themselves have Dyed miserably, and on their Death-beds, they have cry'd out for that very Minister to help them in their Angui­shes. Yea, you may sometimes mark it in our Churches; A Church has long Enjoy'd an Ex­cellent Minister; but they grow at length full of unaccountable prejudices against him; The Son of God seeing this their Froward Folly, sends for that Minister away to Heaven presently; & let 'em supply themselves with such another when they can find [...]im! If unto these things, I should add, That the Impoverishing Judgments of God upon our Land, have been very much for that Abominable Sacriledg [...] ▪ wherein the Ministers of Christ almost all the Land over, have been as much defrauded of their Dues, as if you should withold the Wages of your Servants, [which is a Sin that cries to God for Vengeance!] I could quote Scripture enough, to give Authority unto that Assertion. Scripture! Yea, and Experience too. A Town in this Country, Enrich'd with Two very Eminent Ministers, did one year pass a Town Vote, That they could not allow their Ministers above Thirty Pounds a piece that year, for their Salaries; and behold, the God who will not be mocked, immediately caused the Town to lose Three Hundred Pounds, in that Specie of their Cattle, by one Disaster. But I forbear it; for though the Judgments of God go on to break [Page 34] people in a Mortar, for it, this Foolishness, I know, will never depart from them. I pass to,

The Second Remark.

Men had ne [...]d beware of Rash Speeches, espe­cially of Rash Wishes, for we have seen Sore Judg­ments fall out, most agreeably thereunto. It was wholesome Advice once given by the Town-Cle [...] of Ephesus, Ye ought to Do nothing Rashly ▪ Truly, Nor should we Speak any thing Rashly, much less Wish any thing Rashly. Syrs, The An­gels of Death over-hear what we say, and God often gives 'em Commission to Sin [...]e a man, Ex Ore suo. How often have we seen it, That a Fools Mouth is his Destruction, and his Lips are the Snare of his Soul! There was once a very Godly man, of whom 'tis Reported, in Psal [...] [...]06.32. It went Ill with him, because they provoked his Spirit, so that he spoke unadvisedly with his Lips. I'll tell you what I have met withal. I have heard a vexed Father say, He cared not whether he ever saw such a Child again. That Child has gone out of his Presence, and through the Dispatches of Death, he has never seen that Child again.

I have known a Weary Mother say, She hopes this is the Last Child she shall ever have; and mul­ [...]iplied, and unhappy Miscarriages, ever after, have given 'em cause to remind what they said, with bitterness of Soul.

Again, There was a Sailor in a Boat bound hither from the Northward, who being disswa­ded [Page 35] from taking a Pipe of Tobacco, because they had a Barrel of Powder aboard, reply'd, I will take it, though the Devil carry me away alive! The Fire some how came at the Powder, which tore the Boat in pieces, and Lost all the Goods that were in it. All the men, were to admiration preserved; except that one Sailor, whom they long after found in the Woods, with his Body torn to pieces.

Once more; A Lewd Young man, being dis­satisfied, with the Service wherein he Lived, at the House of an Honest man, in a Neighbouring Town, when they told him, That his bad cour­ses would bring him to Hell at the Last, he wick­edly said, He had rather be in Hell than in his Ma­sters House. Immediately after this, he was in a very strange manner Drowned ▪ off a Litle Bank in the River. Take one Example more.

There was an Old Professor, in one of our Churches, who being under the Admonition of the Church for some Offences, was by his Friends called upon, to Repent, and Reform, and Hum­ble himself. But he flew into this outrageous Answer, No, I will Burn, before I will Turn. And Behold the Issue! This man some time after, fell into the Fire, and was Burnt to Death. Take yet one more Example.

A man, in our Narragansett-Country having set his Dog to mischief his Neighbours Cattel, de­ny'd the Fact, with Imprecations, That he might [Page 36] never stir from the place, if he had so done. The Neighbour, to whom he deny'd it, expressing himself troubled at his Impudent Lying, this A­theist hereupon used the Name of the Great God in his Imprecations, That God would never let him stir out of that place, if he did the Thing. The words were scarce out of his mouth, but he sunk down Dead in the place, and never stirred any more.

And as they who Curse ▪ themselves often smart for it, [consider of this, ye Hardy Wretches, who call upon the Almighty to Damn you, which the Devils themselves are not so Hardy as to Do!] So they who Curse others, do horribly wound themselves in the Recoyl. You shall hear an Example.

A Debauch'd Fellow, had Cursed that Excel­lent man, Governour Prince. The Governour Laid before the Transgressor, the Gre [...] Si [...] he had committed; and with a Grave, Holy, Aw­ful Admonition, besought him to consider of that Scripture, in Psal. 109.17, 18. As he Loved Cursing▪ so let it come unto him, as▪ he delighted not in Blessing, so let it be far from him. As he clothed himself with Cursing, like as with his Garments, so let it come into his Bowels, and like Oyl into his Bones. Quickly after this, a direful Cancer smote this man; the Cancer appeared first in his Lip, and so it Eat away his Flesh, and his Jaw, down to his Throat; where, with Inexpressible Torments, it kill'd him.

Behold, O man; If thou desirest Life; keep thy Tongue from Evil!

[Page 37]

The Third Remark.

There is a Lying Proverb, A Drunken man gets no Harm: We have seen the Judgments of God upon Drunkards, most Wofully confuting of that Lye. I am sure, Tis not a Proverb of Solomons; for he sayes, in Prov. 23.29. Who hath Wo? They who tarry long at the Wine. Is it no Harm, for a man to bring Sickness, on his Body? We have seen Drunkards often perishing in Diseases contracted by their Debauches Is it no Harm, for a man to bring Disgrace, on his Esteem? We have often seen Drunkards become very Abjects, though they once were Folks of some Fashion and Figure in the World. Is it no Harm, for a man to bring Poverty on his Estate? We have often seen the Judgments of God fulfilling that word, The Drunk­ard shall come to Poverty. Surely, Tis no little Harm, for men to Debase, and Confound their own Souls, and lay themselves open, unto the worst of all the Temptations of the Devil, the worst of all Impieties. But Sirs, How often have we seen woful Drunkards doing so? We have seen them Turn Beasts, yea, Turn Devils! But more particularly.

A Drunken man, is in old English as much as to say, A Drowned man. To see then, a Drunken man, become a Drowned man, is to see but a most Retaliating Hand of God. Why, we have seen This very Thing, more than Threescore Times in our Land. And I remember the Drowning of [Page 38] one Drunkard, so odly circumstanced; It was [...] the Hold of a Vessel, that lay full of water nea [...] the Shore. We have seen it, so often, that I am amazed at you, O ye Drunkards of New England; I am amazed, that you can Harden your Hearts in your Sin, without Expecting to be destroy'd sud­denly, and without Remedy. Yea, And we have seen the Devil, that ha's possess'd the Drunkard, throwing him into the Fire, as well as into the Water. They have Tumbled into the Fire, and then kept Shrieking, Fire! Fire! till they have gone down to the Fire, that never shall be quench­ed. Yea, More than One or Two, Drunken Women, in this very Town, have, while in their Drink, fallen into the Fire, and so they have Tra­gically gone Roaring out of one Fire into another. O ye Daughters of Belial, Hear and Fear, and Do Wickedly no more!

The Fourth Remark.

It was a Thing once charged upon Sabbath-breakers, in Neh. 13 18. Ye bring Wrath upon Israel, by Profaning the Sabbath. And have not we seen the Wrath of God, Correcting Profanations of the Christian Sabbath, with Rebukes of Thunder and Lightning? And indeed, Some Intelligent Per­sons have noted it, That the dreadful Storms of Thunder and Lightning, which have kill'd many a­mong us from year to year, as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah; they have mostly happen­ed on or near the Lords Day: As an intimation, [Page 39] that breaches of the Lords-Day, have procured the Firing of the Great Artillery of Heaven upon us. However, Our Land sees little Rest, through the Judgments of God upon us, for the Violations of the Sacred Rest, which he ha's appointed for us. And the many Disasters, which happen on the Lord [...] Day among us, may be so many Judg­ments, upon us, for our not Sanctifying the Day unto the Lord ▪ But all the more Special Exemples, of Judgments coming for Sins against the Sabbath, I will wrap up, in this one piece of History. I have been desired by many Malefactors, to be with them at their Execution; and Then, in those last and sad Minutes of their Lives, they have sometimes cryed out, This, This is a Judgment of God, upon my Sabbath-breaking; I may thank my Sabbath-breaking for all this; T'was for my mis­pending of the Sabbath with vain Persons, and in vain Actions, that God ha's left me to that Wickedness which ha's brought upon me, all of this horrible Misery! Think of This, you that still say of the Lords-Day, What a Weariness is it?

The Fifth Remark.

Disobedient Children! My Heart akes for you for I have seen the Judgments of God, makin [...] such as you ▪ the most astonishing Monuments [...] His Indignation. It was a Custome in Israel, tha [...] once a year, this Proclamati [...]n was made, fro [...] the Top of Mount Ebal, in D [...]ut. 27.16. Cursed he, that setts Light by his Father [...] or his Mother. A [...] [Page 40] all the People shall say, Amen. As from the Top of that Mount, I do this Day Proclame it, That [...] have seen the Curse of God, making a Quick work with such as have not Honoured their Parents; while I have also seen, those Children, who have Ho­noured, and Supported, and Comforted their Pa­rents, wonderfully Prospering under the manifold Blessings of God. And, I Pray all the People to mind it.

Very Few have Dy'd on the Gallowes, in this place, but what have Wrung their Hands upon the Ladder, with this out cry, This is a Judgment of God upon me, for my Undutifulness unto my Pa­rents; My Dis [...]bedience to my Parents ha's brought me hither!

But this Article of Discourse may not be dis­missed, until we have Singled out One particular Exemple, of the Strange Punishments, which Undu­tiful Children bring upon themselves, from the Judgments of God.

A Reverend Minister of Christ, that often Served Him, in that very Pulpit, where these words are uttered, once observed a Son, to behave himself undutifully towards his Father, in the Ferry boat, which was carrying them over the River. Whe [...]eupon that Man of God said unto the Young man, Young man, I am sorry to see you so little Regard your Father; I would ser [...]ously per­swade you to Rep [...] of your Undutifulness, or, I will solemnly Assure [...], that I Expect, the Killing Judg­ments [Page 41] of God will overtake you, before a year come to an end. And, behold, before that year was out, this Young man was miserably Mu [...]dered.

Hearken, my Young Folks; And Let not your Eye mock your Fathers, or despise to obey your Mothers, Lest the Ravens of the Valley do pick it out, and the Young Eagles do eat it!

The Sixth Remark.

Unto the Contentious we have seen God Recom­pence Indignation and Wrath, Tribulation and Anguish. Said th [...] Apostle once, in Rom. 16 17. I bes [...]ch you, Brethren, Mark them which cause Div [...]s. And I now say, I beseech you, Brethren, Mark the Places and the Persons, which by Divisions have m [...]de themselves Notorious: Mark, what Judgments of God have Signalized them. Something of what I have Marked, I will freely tell you.

I have Marked it, That those Places, which have kept up Divisions, and Strifes, and Schisms, have been direfully Smitten with Spiritual Plagues, the Plagues which are of all the direfullest. The most Lively Saints in those places, have been soon Snatch'd away by Death, one after another: The Power of Godliness hath been Lamentably lost a­mong the Survivers, and a Leanness hath been sent into their Souls: The Work of Conversion hath been at a deadly stand, and the Rising Generati­on hath pined away in their Iniquities. Yea, there was one Church among us, wherein an uncom­fortable Rupture happened: and a Young man [Page 42] in the Town was left unto an horrid Self-Murder; he Drowned himself: But he left behind him a Writing directed unto his Father, wherein there was this among other passages; Father, My Ruine was, the Stubborness and Unfaithfullness of my Tender years; and Evil Counsil, and Evil Company; and, The Differences in the Church, by reason whe [...]of I grew Pro [...]d, and did not carry it in my place, as I ought, which is the wide way to Ruine. God make this Young man, our Warner; His Name was, Warner!

Again, I have Marked it, That those Persons, who have been the Grand Incendiaries, in Divi­sions, have been often branded, with some Symp­tomes of the Displeasure of God. Those Persons, have, been very Industrious to Blott the Names of other men; and at last, they themselves have Dy'd with a Blott. This indeed, is a point wherein we must be sparing; yet I may not forget, That a Council Sitting at a Town, for the Composing of some Ecclesiastical Differences, Our Venerable Old Mr. Wilson saw one man to be Extreamly perverse above the rest, and most unreasonably, to disturb the Peace of the Church. Whereupon, that Zealous man, told the Council, he was Con­fident, That the Jealously of God, would set a Mark upon that man, and that the Ordinary Death of men should not befal him. It happened a little while after this, that the man was barbarously Murder­ed by the Salvages!

[Page 43]Again, There was a Quarrelsome Woman in a Church not far off; who having Accused a man in the Church, of a Fault that she could not prove, She yet remained so Irreconcileable, that she would never come to the Lords Table, as long as that man Lived. He Dying, she brag'd unto her Friends, That now she would go to the Sacra­ment, at the Lords Table. One of them solemn­ly told her, That she might yet Fear a Testimony of the Displeasure of God against her, for her Unchristian Absenting her self so long from that Ordinance. And, Lo, She Dyed Suddenly, Just before the Next Sa­crament was to be Administred: [though she had the Repute of a Godly Woman.] Don't then, Don't Sow Discord any of you, lest you be an Abomination to the Lord. Be not Unpeaceable, or Unplacable; God is not pleased with the Froward.

The Seventh Remark.

We are assured in 2 Pet. 2.9, 10. At the Day of Judgment sh [...]l b [...] punished, chiefly they that walk after the Flesh, in the Lust of Uncleanness. And it is no rare thing among us, to see Judgment in this World also overtaking them. Father Laty­mer once presented unto a Great man, a New Testament, with this Inscription Embossed on the Cover of it, Whoremongers and Adulterers God shall Judge. And indeed, how surprisingly, how Amazingly, may we see God Judging, that sort of Sinners!

We have seen many, many, many, to Dy in their [Page 44] Youth; because, Their Life has been among the Un­clean We have seen them, to mourn at the last, when their Flesh and their Body, has been consumed. We have seen them getting a Wound and a Disho­nour, and a Reproach, that is never wiped away. It may be, the Just God says upon the Unclean, Write this person Childless! or, it may be, the Lord says, I will kill their Children with Death. Or, 'tis pos­sible, some very miserable Disasters have attend­ed their Offsp [...]ing; Peccatum seminis punitur in se­mine. Why? Because that some old Acts of Uncleanness have not been enough Repented of.

'Tis said of Uncleanness, By means thereof, a man is brought unto a piece of Bread. Some forlorn peo­ple, have cry'd out unto me, of their desperate Poverty; and anon, they have confessed, That they believed the Judgments of God, made them, and kept them so poor, to Revenge the Secret, Cursed, Horrid Adulteries, which they had wallowed in.

Yea, How many have R [...]pen [...]ed themselves, for the most Capital Strokes of the Sword of Ju­stice, by this Wickedness! I have known several who under a Sentence of Death, for other Crimes wherein they thought themselves hardly dealt withal, have cryed out, Oh! 'Tis for my Secret A­dulteries, that the Holy God, has brought all this upon me! And how many Young Women, have been Executed among us, for Murdering of their Ba­stard Infants! But, at their Execution, this has been their Exclamation, Oh! 'that all young people, [Page 45] would beware of the Snares of Uncleanness: By con­tinuing in those woful Snares, without any speedy Re­pentance, we have been Ruined! One of the first in this Land, that came to such an End, [Her Name was Martin,] had yielded unto a Wicked man solliciting her Chastity: but with such Reluct­ances of Soul, that in her Prayers to God, for Help, she said, If ever she were overtaken again, she would Leave her self unto His Justice to be made an Example. She Remembred not her Vows, but was again overtaken: She Conceived, she Tra­vailed, she privately Destroy'd her Child, using Two several Attempts before she could wholly dispatch it. Afterwards, upon a Removal of the Family, the Murder strangely came to Light: God made the Infant Bleed afresh before her, for her Confusion; She own'd the whole Truth, and she Dy'd for i [...]: But she was Twice Turn'd off, before her Expiration. Say then, Say, my Friends, to all the Temptations of Uncleanness, How shall I do this Wickedness, and Sin against God!

The Eighth Remark.

Let us a Little Summ up the Gains, of those who have used Irregular Methods of Oppression, or of Dishonesty, to Gain the World. I have done it; and I'll tell you what I have seen the Sum Total to be. The Judgments of God have brought it unto That, in Jer. 17.11. He gets Riches, and not by Right; At his End he shall be a Fool. Fa­ther Latymer, would speak of a Grievous Cough [Page 46] which would come upon them that swallow'd Unrighteous Gains. Truly, Losses have usually fol­lowed upon such Gains, like so many Coughs, & men have Cough'd, & Cough'd, until they vomited up all that they had got. It is the Charge of our Lord Jesus Christ upon us, That no man go beyond, or op­press his Brother▪ in a matter; because that the Lord is the Avenger of all such. We are told, If thou seest the Oppression of the Poor, He that is Higher than the Highest, Regards it. We are told, God consi­ders all the Oppressions that are done under the Sun. There was much Notice taken of This, in the Infancy of our Plymouth Colony, when the poor Planters had their Dependence on certain Ad­venturers in England. The Adventurers, taking their Advantages, of the Extream Straits, which those poor Planters were in, sent over Supplies unto them, at the most Extreamest Rates imagi­nable. The poor Planters made Return in Pel­try; but the Vessel was taken by a Turks Man of War, and carried into Salley, where they Sold the Peltry for Groats a piece; as much too Low, as the Goods for which they had been Return'd were too High, and the men were made Priso­ners into the Bargain, to the great Loss of the Adventurers. But it would spend many Hours to Relate, the Notice which might have been since taken, of many more, such Evident Judg­ments o [...] God, on the Wayes of the Oppressor. Oh! do not Learn his Wayes; God gives unto all sorts [Page 47] of Devourers, Letters of Reprisal, to take away [...]is Unjust Gains from him; very commonly it so [...]alls out.

There are some, that have used the grossest [...]ort of Stealing, and Robbing. But have they Enriched themselves? I Entreat you, Syrs, to [...]ake our New-English Pyrates, the Subjects of your Meditations That man is Blind unto Sun­ [...]hine, and Blind before Lightning, who sees not [...]he Tremendous Judgments of God, pursuing of [...]hose wicked men. Let no man after this, run greedily after the Error, of those Children of Per­dition. But, if any of you, have knowingly [...]een Sharers with them in their Gains; for Gods sake, Repent of what you have done; you have carried Burning Coals into your fea­ther'd Nests; Don't put a farthing of that mo­ney, among the rest of your Possessions; it will consume all the rest.

Others have had their Finer wayes of Cheating; but, what ha's come of them? The Estates got­ten by Cheating, have been but so many Treasures of Snow; The Rains of the Wrath of God, have wonderfully melted them; — at least, Viz gaudet Tertius Haeres.

There are Persons that have Broken, by their own Extravagancies: Not meerly by sad Provi­dences, bu [...] their own Extravagancies: These have used more Fraudulence than Fair-dealing, in [...] Compositions with their Creditors: But have [...] [Page 48] not seen afterwards, That after This (as we say) No Butter would ever Stick upon their Bread?

Widowes, When the Estates of the Deceased Husbands have been Insolvent, have not alwayes given in True Accounts; They have held back [...] part, that they should not have witheld: God ha's been Offended at them; they have gone un­der the Scourges of God all their Dayes for that Offence.

Desperate Gamesters, What hand have they made of it? — I can tell, what one of them did. He had play'd away, about Forty Pounds, in Lew'd Company; and then, he fell into Horror of Conscience, wherein he often Cryed out, I am all on Fire, under the Wrath of God! I am all on Fire, under the Wrath of God! And so, he went and hang'd himself.

Make all the Restitution that you can, Ye Cheats; or Expect the Judgments of God upon you. — Dis­eite▪ Justitiam Moniti.

The Ninth Remark.

Methinks, The Publick Judgments under which we have laboured, have sometimes, very con­victively Intimated the Sins and Faults, for which those Judgments have been Laid upon us. I will use a plain dealing in this matter. When have the Judgments of God, ever Deprived us of any▪ Good Thing, but we first of all have Despi­ [...]d, that Good!

We have been Sensual, Excessive, Unthankful, [Page 49] in our Enjoyment of the Fruits of our Har­vest. The Judgments of God have blasted them.

We have made Idols of our Lands, and for the sake thereof, neglected almost all that is Holy, and Just and Good. There was a Time, when through the Judgments of God, our Titles to them all were contested.

Litigious Law-Suits, were Scandalously multi­plied among us. The Judgments of God, brought us into a Time, when the Extortions of the Law made a Cry among us.

Drinking-houses, have been a most undoing Stumbling-block of Iniquity, in the midst of us. The Judgments of God, brought us into a Time, when Unsufferable Villanies were perpetrated every where, under the pretence of the Excise.

Those Times, are now over-indeed. But our Indian Wars are not over yet! We have too far degenerated into Indian Vices. The Vices of the Indians are these; They are very Lying Wretch [...] ▪ and they are very Lazy Wretches; and they are out of measure Indulgent unto their Children; there is no Family Government among them. We have shamefully Indianized, in all those Abomina­ble Things. Now, the Judgments of God, have Employ'd Indian Hatchets, to wound us, no doubt for these our Indian Vices.

A Thousand more such Things, may occur to a serious Observation. Syrs, Consider the Wondrous Works of God!


The Tenth Remark.

Many people have Sinned Horribly, upon a pre­sumption that they Sinned Secretly: But the Judg­ments of God, have been wonderfully and pro­digiously, and stupendously Display'd, in the Discovering of Secret Sinners, among us. David no doubt, promised himself, an Everlasting Se­crecy, of his Transgression: Thou didst it Secretly, said the Prophet; And the Psalmist, calling to mind that word, own'd in Psal. 51.4. Against Thee, Thee only have I Sinned; And the Evil I have done in Thy Sight. None was privy to the Crime, except one man, who was a Partner in it. Yea, but, Says the Lord, I'll make all Israel Hear of it! The Sin-Confounding Judgments of God, made all the Sin to come out. Syrs, Those Judgments of God, have been so Exemplified among our selves, That I cannot imagine how some Guilty Wretches, whose Crimes are hitherto Secret, are able to Walk about, having the Terrors of the Shadow of Death upon their Souls.

How many Secret Murders, have strangly been Discovered among us! And, I believe, there are yet more to be Discovered.

There have been Devilish Filthinesses committed among us; But, Oh! how strangely, have the Sins of men found them out!

At the Southward, there was a Beast, which brought forth a Creature, which might pretend [...]to something of an Humane Shape. Now, t [...]e [Page 51] people minded, that the Monster had a Blemish in one Eye, much like what a profligate Fellow in the Town was known to have. This Fellow was hereupon Examined; and upon his Exami­nation, Confessed, his Infandous Beastialities, for which he was deservedly Executed.

But I'le never Confess, thinks many an Hard-hearted Sinner. No! So thought another man, whose Name I could mention. He was one, who had formerly, and frequently, derided other persons, as Fools for Confessing against themselves. This man Lived in Adultery, especially with one Vile Woman; until God Struck him with a Dead Palsey, and a Quick Conscience. Then, he that had Laughed at others, for not concealing their Sins, could not conceal his Own. He Revealed his Villanies with that Woman, and others; and he acknowledged the Justice of God, [...]n com­pelling him to Reveal them. The Woman also made an Acknowledgment of her Enormities; and they both, Dy'd for their Iniquities.

What shall I say? There have been Church-Members among us, who have made no mean Profession of Religion. These have gone on from year to year, in a Trade of Secret Filthiness. Even I know, and am a Witness of it, sayes the Lord. Some of these, have Dy'd in very sad circum­stances, and the World ha's never heard any thing of the Lords Controversy with them. Yea, but many of them, have been strangely Detecte [...] [Page 52] before they have Dy'd: They have been left unto some Foolish, and Sottish Action, at last, which ha's Occasion'd the Publishing of their Vileness unto all the World. The Holy Eyes of the Lord Jesus Christ, which are like a Flame of Fire, have seen their Damnable Hypocrisy, and Impiety; and, He hath made all the Churches to know, that He [...]earches the Reins and Hearts of men: He hath made their Wickedness to be Declared before the whole Congregation: He hath brought the Publick Censures of His Faithful People upon them. He hath done much in these awful Judg­ments; and, I fear, I fear, He hath yet more to do, upon some, in the midst of thee, O Boston▪ Except they Repent!

The Eleventh Remark.

The Judgments of God among us, have not been more Conspicuous upon any Sinners, than upon those that have made others to Sin. There are some, whom the Scriptures call, The Chief of Sinners: Those who are Chief, in Drawing others on to be Sinners. Truly, The Judgments of God, have often made these, as Exemplary in their Plagues, as they have been in their Sins.

I have known, some Wretched Young Men, in several Societies, who have been the Chief De­bauchers of the Societies which they belong'd unto. But Oh! What sad Things, could I tell you, of the Deadly Judgments that God hath Showred [...]om Heaven, upon the Heads of those Infamous [Page] Youths! God ha's made 'em, the Sons of Eli, with His Deadly Judgments.

Under this Head of the Divine Judgments, why should I not mention the Condition of one whom I knew in this Place? The man Denyed the Immortality of the Soul; and would go to de­bauch other men, with his vile Opinion, That we have no Immortal Soul in us. This poor man came to ly on his Death bed, and then the Terrors of God so Thunderstruck his Conscience, that his Dying out-cryes were, Oh! what shall I do for my Immortal Soul; what will become of my Immortal Soul for ever!

And, when, alas, when will our Indian Traders, apply to themselves, that Commination, in Heb. 2.15. Wo to him that gives his Neighbour Drink that puttest thy Bottle [thy Rhum Bottle!] to him and makest him Drunken also? While there ha's been a most Observable Blessing of God, upon th [...] Preachers of Truth to the Indians, all the World may Observe a Judgment of God, upon the Sellers of Drink to the Indians. I pray, what have the Estates of such men, generally come to? Do; Trade on, ye Merchants of Souls, or, more truly, ye Butchers of Souls: Trade on, till the Judgments of God, have caused you, to Trade your selves into Beggery at the last! But know, that the Blood of Souls, will be found on you [...] Skirts. It is not very long ago, that an unusu [...] Accident in a part of this Province, did [...] [Page] [...]he Neighbours into some serious Thoughts of this matter. Several Indians were made horri­bly Drank, by the Drink, [...] the English had Sold unto them. Returnin [...] home, over a Little Ferry, Eight of them were Drowned; and Three months after they were Drown'd [from December to March] one of their Dead Bodies came ashore, very near the place, where they had been suppli­ [...]d with their Drink; and [...]ying on the Shore, it [...] so plentifully as to discolour the Water and and about it. Upon which the Considerate [...]ectators, thought of that Scripture, The Stone all cry out of the Wall, against him that gives his [...]eighbour Drink. They thought, there was a [...]oud Cry of Blood! Blood! against some Wicked [...]glish in this matter.

The Twelfth Remark.

Finally; We have seen, we have seen, That [...] omitting thei [...] Prayers to God, men bespeak [...] themselves, the Judgments of God.

How many, that have Liv'd Prayerless, have we [...]en to Dy Prayerless, or to Dy Hopeless?

We often miscarry in our Enterprizes; Now [...] we would Search and Try our Wayes, it may be, we should find, That we did not sufficiently Pray, over our Enterprises, before we Resolved upon them. How often, How often, have I seen this [...]erified in the Judgments of God!

Yea, by a Prayerless Life, we have seen men, [...] down, the most consummate Judgments of [...] upon their own woful Heads.

[Page]It was a pathetical Passage in the [...] Prayer of a poor Murderer, that was Executed [...] this place not long ago.

Oh! (said he) If I had gone to Prayer that morn­ing, when I committed the Sin for which I am now to Dy, Oh! Lord God, I believe, thou wouldest have kept back my Hands from that Sin!

[...] Day, wherein men have gone abroad with­out Prayer, before they went, how often have th [...] Judgments of God made it a Day of Thick Darkness to the Prayerless people? Such a Day, w [...] that of poor Origens Apostasy.

Yea, There was an Aged Professor, [...] to a Church in this Tow [...], who, after [...] of Good Repute, with Good People, [...] Drunken Sot, for which he was [...] After his Excommunication, he fell [...] Anguish of Soul, and at length [...] Circumstances. But some of [...] words were; I often Pray'd unto God, fo [...] a [...] which He still Deny'd me. At [...]ength I g [...]ew Angr [...] at God: Whereupon I grew slack in my Acquaintance with the Lord; Ever since which, He hath dreadfull [...] forsaken me, and I know, that now He hath no Mercy for me. Think of these things, and Oh! do not so Reject Fear, as to Restrain Prayer, before the Lord.

These are the most peculiar Judgments of God unto which I have accounted i [...], not ami [...]s, [...] point you; That so you may Tremble for fear Him, and be afraid of His Judgments.


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