Mr. Prince's Funeral SERMON ON The HONOURABLE Judge Sewall.


A SERMON AT The Publick Lecture in BOSTON Jan. viii. 1729, 30.

UPON The Death of The HONOURABLE Samuel Sewall, Esq LATE Chief Justice of the Circuits AND One of His Majesty's Council for the Province WHO Deceased at his House in BOSTON on the 1st of the same Month and in the 78th Year of his Age.

By THOMAS PRINCE, M. A. One of the Pastors of the South Church.

Isa. iii.1,—3.

For behold, the LORD, the LORD of Hosts, doth take away from JERUSALEM and from JUDAH, The Judge— and the Prudent, and the Ancient — and the Honourable Man — and the Councillor.

BOSTON in NEW-ENGLAND: Printed by B. Green, 1730.

[Page 1]

A Funeral Sermon.

1 Sam. vii.15.— e.

AND SAMUEL judged ISRAEL all the Days of his Life: And He went from Year to Year in Circuit to Bethel and Gilgal and Mispeh, and judged ISRAEL in all those Places: And his Return was to Ramah, for there was his House, and there He judged ISRAEL, and there He built an Altar to the LORD.

I PRESUME the larger Part of this great Assembly are met here this Day, with an Expectation and Desire to make some Improvement, both of the Death and Life of that honourable and aged Per­son, who has sat so long among us a great Part of our Beauty and Joy, and whose late Decease now puts us into universal Mourning. And as I have often tho't that He in many respects, both in his Birth, his Education, his Office, Life and Character, resembled the Scripture SAMUEL: I cou'd not but apply myself on this Occasion, to make a few Reflections on the Words before us; wherein every Hearer sees a clear Description of our own deceased.

[Page 2]AND here are these four things to be considered,—

  • 1. THE Person spoken of,
  • 2. HIS peculiar Office,
  • 3. HIS faithful Discharge of it,
  • 4. and lastly, HIS shining Piety.

I. THE Person spoken of; and this is SAMUEL.

NOW SAMUEL, we know, was one of the most emi­nent and happy of the JUDGES, which the GOD of Israel was pleased to raise up among his People in the early times of their Declension; to save them from Oppression and preserve them in a strict Adherence to the inspired Religion of their Fathers.

HIS immediate Descent was from Parents of exem­plary Piety. While many turn'd away to the Super­stitious Inventions of the neighbouring Nations; this happy Couple persevered in the zealous Practice and Profession of the pure Religion, as it was reveal'd im­mediately from GOD Himself.

HIS Father strictly followed his great and pious Leader JOSHUA in his Resolution, that both He and his House would serve the LORD. He constantly went up with all his Family from his own Habitation in Ra­mah to the Tabernacle and Ark in Shiloh at the ap­pointed Seasons: and there He gave his devout atten­dance to the sacred Institutions of divine appointment; there He presented his publick Sacrifices of Prayer and Praise, and worshipped the LORD.

AND his Mother will be for ever famous, for the Prayer of Faith whereby she obtained this her first born Son, and for the grateful Sacrifice of Praise wherewith she came and return'd Him freely to the divine Bestower. In a particular manner He was the Son of her Vows: For she solemnly resolv'd before she had Him, to give Him up to GOD; And as soon as she weaned Him, she chearfully performed her Promise. She brought Him up to the TEMPLE in Shiloh, as the Ark and [Page 3] Tabernacle are expresly called in the first Chapter at the 9th Verse: And there she presents her Child with her Thank-offering and joyful Song, and resigns Him to the LORD as long as He lived.

HERE she therefore leaves Him: and Here in his tender Years He is, under the Instruction and Care of the High Priest ELI, trained up in the Knowledge of the inspired Writings and in the sacred Service of the Sanctuary, to which He had been thus devoted. In the 2d Chapter at the 11th Verse, 'tis said, that the Child did minister to the LORD before ELI the Priest: and in the 18th Verse, again, that SAMUEL ministred before the LORD, being a Child.

IN these two Places He is called a Child, even while He ministred: He ministred before or to the LORD— To signify the pious Inclination and Employment of his tender Age: And He is said to minister before ELI the Priest; which seems to intimate, that ELI took Him into his special Care, kept Him always under his Eye, descern'd his Hopefulness and delighted in Him. And by the general Air of the sacred History, it seems as if there quickly grew a very great and mutual Fond­ness between the venerable Master and the young De­sciple. While SAMUEL grows in filial Reverence and Concern to obey and please the aged Father; ELI also grows in a paternal Tenderness and Affection for Him.

UNDER the Tuition of this ancient and pious Mi­nister, who was no doubt Himself a learned Man in the Laws of GOD, such a Child as SAMUEL must needs improve in Goodness. And in Verse 26th we read, that the Child SAMUEL grew on, and was in Favour, both with the LORD, and also with Men. As He advanc'd in Years and Knowlege, He must therefore also have grown in Grace and Wisdom, even in his early Youth; so as to rise in the Notice and E­steem of all about Him, as well as to have this destin­guishing Honour done Him as to intimate, that He grew in the Favour of GOD Himself.

[Page 4]YEA to such an eminent Highth of Piety did He quickly rise; that while He was no more than a Child, GOD was pleas'd to single Him out above all the Priests and People of ISRAEL, to endue Him with the Spirit of Prophecy. And indeed, He seems to be the youngest Prophet that ever was in the World.

IT was in a time of far advanc'd Apostacy, when the provoked Spirit of GOD had greatly left them; the Word of the LORD, i. e. The Word of Prophecy, was become very precious; and there was no open Vision, i. e. no known or publick Prophet favoured with In­spirations. In such a Time as this it was, and while the Child SAMUEL ministred to the LORD before ELI; that the Word of the LORD was revealed to SAMUEL, as we have an account in the 3d Chapter.

BUT a Child — a Prophet!— How is it possible that humane Nature in so extreamly light and vain an Age, shou'd in a suitable manner bare the destinguishing Dig­nity of being a Prophet, above the rest of the World? The great Apostle PAUL, tho' in the hight of manly Power and Wisdom, a full grown Christian, and sur­rounded with great numbers of inspired Persons, yet represents himself in the utmost danger of being exalted above measure for his abundant Revelations; and to save Him from it, both a Thorn in the Flesh was given Him, and a Messenger from Satan sent to buffet Him, and keep Him low. But little SAMUEL bares the Dignity alone in so lowly a manner, that He still gets up in the Morning to attend on his inferior Office of opening the Doors of the House of the LORD, and goes on to conceal his Revelations, till ELI obliges Him to discover them.— His Humi­lity under them is a far greater Wonder than his having the Spirit of Prophesy.

NONE can be so much prepar'd for the Revelations of the mind of GOD, or Converse with Him, as the most Humble Soul: none so much become or recommend them when they are bestowed: and none are so much [Page 5] prepared for signal Exaltations. With such the Blessed GOD delights to dwell: And no wonder then we read in the three last Verses of this third Chapter, and the first of the next, — That SAMUEL grew, and the LORD was with him, and let none of his Words fall to the Ground: and all ISRAEL even from Dan to Beersheba, knew that SAMUEL was established to be a Prophet of the LORD: and the LORD ap­pear'd again in Shiloh: for the LORD reveal'd Himself to SAMUEL in Shiloh, by the Word of the LORD: and the Word of SAMUEL came to all ISRAEL.

AND now it seems, we read no more of this grow­ing Youth for above Twenty Years, when we find Him cloathed suddenly with a Judicial Character, and some how or other removed from Shiloh to Ramah. We therefore come to consider,

II. THE peculiar Office of a Publick JUDGE, wherein the Text describes Him.

BUT long before He arrives at this, his uncommon Graces must be extreamly tried and exercised. He must bare the Yoke in his early Days▪ and even while a Youth, it seems, as if his own awful Prophecies became a most affecting History.

FOR now comes on a time of great Affliction and Confusion in the Land of ISRAEL. The Philistine Armies came up and killed Four thousand Men: In a second Fight, slew Thirty thousand Footmen: The Two Sons of ELI, who had carried the ARK into the Field of Battle were slain: That sacred Sign of GOD's gracious Covenant and Presence was taken by their insulting Enemies: Upon the dreadful Tidings, the High Priest Himself, who was also their sovereign Judge, falls off his Seat and dies: and the ARK OF GOD is carried into the House of Dagon.

A most dark and dismal Day was this to ISRAEL: as we have it described in those moving Colours, [Page 6] Psal. lxxviii.58,—64. For they provoked Him to An­ger with their High Places, and moved Him to Jea­lousy with their graven Images: When GOD heard this, He was wroth, and greatly abhorred ISRAEL: So that he forsook the Tabernacle of Shiloh, the Tent which He placed among Men; and delivered his Strength into Captivity, and his Glory into the Ene­mies hand: He gave his People over also to the Sword, and was wroth with his Inheritance: the Fire con­sumed their young Men, and their Maidens were not given to Marriage: their Priests fell by the Sword, and their Widows had no Opportunity to make their funeral Lamentations.

WITHIN Eight Months after, indeed, the Philistines were forced by the distinguishing Judgments of GOD upon them, to return the ARK to the Borders of Israel: But no sooner was that most sacred Token of the Di­vine Presence arrived at Bethshemesh, than Fifty thou­sand & Seventy of the People flocking round it from every Quarter, were slain, by a Divine Plague, for their irreverent Treatment of it *. And their victorious Enemies seeing them still in ill Terms with Heaven, seem to [Page 7] have improved their advantage, and extending their Armes, to keep them under sore Oppression for Twenty Years.

BUT what became of the Ark, the Tabernacle, and the Publick Worship, for this tedious Interval?

AS for the Ark & Tabernacle—They were kept asunder all this Time, and a long while after. Upon the great Destruction of the People at Bethshemesh, the Ark was carried to Kirjathjearim, i. e. in English, the Field of the Wood, whereof we read in Psal. cxxxii.6. and was in the Tribe of JUDAH, and there it rested. But the Tabernacle seem'd to continue all this while at Shiloh, which was in the Tribe of EPHRAIM, as we may show hereafter.

AND as for the Publick Worship during this Twenty Years Oppression, — the Ark and Tabernacle thus re­maining separate, the Sanctuary Service seemed to be in a great measure interrupted, neglected and dissolved. And this the more, since 'tis very likely that their jealous and vigilant Oppressors wou'd never suffer them in great numbers to resort together, as all their Males were by their Law obliged three times a Year, at the Tabernacle of the Congregation. By this means Reli­gion further languished, and many more thro' the Arts and Influence of the neighbour Nations and their Commerce with them, turned aside to other Worship.

BUT in this long Scene of Trouble, where was our hopeful SAMUEL, and how does he employ himself?

IN this state of publick Dissolution, ELI and his two elder Sons being Dead, and there being little to be done at Shiloh; the Philistines keeping a watchful eye on that Place of Concourse and on the surviving Family of ELI the late High Priest and Judge; Shiloh seems to have lain in a very solitary State and almost deserted: And 'tis therefore likely that SAMUEL either liv'd a retired Life There, or rather returned to his paternal Inheritance at Ramah.

[Page 8]HOWEVER, He was neither unconcerned with the lamentable State of ISRAEL, nor unactive in his En­deavours to Restore it. And the Third & Fourth Verses of this Seventh Chapter, seem to be a brief Epitome of this obscure Part of his rising Life. For there we read, that while the House of ISRAEL were lamenting after the LORD: SAMUEL spake to all the House of ISRAEL saying; If ye do return to the LORD with all your Hearts, then put away the strange Gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your Hearts to the LORD and serve Him only; and He will deliver you out of the hand of the PHILISTINES. By this it seems that either the People, and especially the Chief of ISRAEL repair'd to SAMUEL for Council; or rather, to prevent the Umbrage of their Enemies, He travelled about from Tribe to Tribe to teach them; Labouring to show them their provoking Sins, to make them sensible that all these Sufferings were Corrections for them, and to bring them on to a general and sin­cere Repentance and Reformation.

AND herein he wrought with great Success, as the following Verse informs us. For at the End of the Twenty Years, and when He seems to be about Thirty Years of Age, they appear prepared to return to the LORD. And then upon his Advice we find them in the two following verses, gathering together at MIZPEH, their ancient Place of Concourse, that there they might unite in Fasting, Praying and Returning to the GOD of their Fathers: and THEN and THERE 'tis first said, HE JUDGED THEM.

BUT why did not one of the Princes of the Tribes assume this Office? How came SAMUEL invested in it; when he was neither the Son of such a Publick Ruler, nor a Man of War, nor did his Genius seem to turn so much to the Arts of civil Policy as plain Religion, to the Service of which He had been from his Infancy designed?

[Page 9]FOR the Resolution of these Enquiries, we may con­sider; That upon the early notice of the Divine Famili­arity with him, the Eyes of ISRAEL must needs be turned towards him as their decisive Oracle: and as they grew in their Knowlege of him, and saw more and more of his extraordinary Piety and Wisdom and Ac­quaintance with the Mind of GOD, his Authority no doubt increased with his Age, and the numbers yearly grew of those who applied to him for his Advice and Judgment, and referr'd their causes to his wise Decision. Who cou'd therefore be so fit to Judge and Rule them? Who cou'd have so great Authority and Influence? In Whom cou'd they so well confide or be united? And therefore now they wisely and openly receive and honour him as their PUBLICK JUDGE, whom GOD had been so signally Preparing for this high Imployment.

AND now at this Assembly of the Tribes of ISRAEL, the Character of this Great and Pious Man arises to the highest pitch that we can well conceive. For now it seems as if the extraordinary Powers both of a Sovereign Prophet, Priest and Judge, were on this occasion united in him: which seems to be a superiour Honour bestow'd on SAMUEL, above all others of the mere Sons of Men, either before or since. For, as a Prophet in­timate with Heaven, he alone declares the Mind of GOD to the attentive People; as their High Priest, he offers Publick Sacrifice and Prayers for them; and as their Sovereign Judge, they all appear to have their Eyes on his Authority and to be intirely subject to his Direction. — Who among the mighty of the Earth may be compared to him!

BUT in what consisted this Peculiar Office?

NOW the original and chief Intention of it seems to be —a Publick Saviour of a People either from foreign or domestick Oppression. The first occasion is pre­cisely given us in Judg. ii. [...]—19. And the Sum is this, — ‘That when the children of ISRAEL forsook the LORD and followed other Gods of the People round about them; the Anger of the LORD grew hot [Page 10] against them, and He deliver'd them into the hand of Spoilers that spoiled them, and they were greatly oppressed: Nevertheless the LORD raised up JUDGES, which deliver'd them out of the hand of those that spoiled them▪ and when He raised up such Judges; then He was with the Judge, and deliver'd them out of the hand of their Enemies all the Days of the Judge: for it repented the LORD, because of their Groanings by reason of those that oppressed them and vexed them.’

BUT then there was no necessity, that these Publick Judges shou'd be Men of the Sword, or have any hand in the immediate Conduct of their Armies. It was sufficient, that they were Persons of great Reputation & Authority among the People, for Justice, Wisdom, Piety, Integ­rity and a publick Spirit: in whom their several Tribes could readily unite and trust, and be directed by in weighty Cases both of a foreign and domestick Na­ture. So the High Priest ELI judged Israel Forty Years, even while He remain'd at Shiloh, and super­intended the Service of the Ark and Tabernacle.

SO SAMUEL likewise Judged their Tribes, both be­fore and after SAUL was rais'd to the royal Dignity. And when He first became their [...], He sav'd them, not by Leading out their Armies, or order­ing their Battles, which He left to those who were trained to War; But by imploying his great Sway and Authority in wisely directing their civil and religious Affairs at Home, promoting a Reformation among the People, doing what lay in his Power to bring them back and reconcile them to GOD, and improving his Interest in Heaven by offering Sacrifice and earnest Intercessions for them.— This is the right Way of saving a People both from intestine and foreign Vi­olence: And He that helps to reform them, helps to deliver them.

AND then a publick Judge is to go on and persevere in the same great Design of preserving a People from [Page 11] Apostacy, and the natural Consequence thereof — Op­pression. He is to set a bright Example of universal Righteousness and Goodness; and not only Do the things which are Right and Good Himself, but like­wise See that others do so too: In the most publick manner to discountenance all Iniquity in every corner of the Land, to encourage Obedience to the Laws of GOD, To be a constant Terror to Evil-Doers, and a Joy and Praise among the Righteous.

FOR these great Ends is SAMUEL raised up to this high Employment, when ISRAEL was brought very low, and had been languishing under hard Oppression for their Departure from the GOD of their Fathers.

AND now we go on to see in the

III. place, HIS faithful DISCHARGE of this supe­rior Office.

HAVING Begun an happy Reformation, He was as zealous to Preserve it. And being own'd their publick Judge, He carefully employ'd his Power, to keep down all Iniquity, and promote a constant Reign of Righte­ousness and Goodness thro' the Land.

AND here are these Three things to be observed,

  • 1 THE great Pains He took for the Publick Good,
  • 2. HIS strict Integrity, And,
  • 3. HIS stedfast Perseverance.

1. THE great Pains He took for the Publick Good. — "He went from Year to Year in Circuit, to Bethel and Gilgal and Mizpeh, and Judged ISRAEL in all those Places: and his Return was to Ramah, for there was his House, and there He judged ISRAEL.

THAT we may have a clearer View of his Judicial Circuit, I shall endeavor a Scripture and brief Descrip­tion of ISRAEL.

[Page 12]AT the Head of the Mediterranean Sea, about Five thousand five hundred Miles to the East-north-eastward from us — There lies the Land of CANAAN: Having the Sea on this side, with the Philistine Cities bordering on it, and on the East side, the River Jordan, issuing out of the Lake of Galiilee, called also Tiberias, and running down into the Lake of Sodom. On the other side Jordan, were the Tribes of Reuben, Gad and the half of Manasseh, ranging along to the Northward: and beyond them, MOAB and AMMON Eastward; and Southward MIDIAN and the great ARABIAN WILDERNESS. About the midst of the Land, from Jordan, across almost to the Western Sea, lay the Tribe of Benjamin: having Juda [...] South­ward, and Dan and Simeon to the South-westward: and to the South of these three lay EDOM and EGYPT. On the North of Benjamin, lay the Tribes of Ephraim and the other half of Manasseh, Issacher, Zebulon, and Asher Westward abreast with Naphthali, along in their order.

AND, for the Circuit of SAMUEL —

RAMAH now appears to be the Place of his Abode; the reason of which we observed before. But there be­ing several Towns of the same Name, especially one in Benjamin and another in Ephraim, it has been dis­puted by Geographers, which of these was the Seat of SAMUEL. However, to me it seems to be decided plainly by Scripture. For this must needs be the same RAMAH, where his Father had his House, as we read in the 1st Chapter at the 19th Verse, and in the 2d Chapter, Verse the 11th. In the former Text 'tis said of both his Parents, That they Return'd and came to their House in RAMAH: and who shou'd heir this House of theirs but their first born SAMUEL? or whither shou'd He repair from Shiloh but to the Place of his Kindred from whence He came? Agreable to the same Expression, HIS Return is here said to be also to RAMAH, for there was HIS House: And the Name of the Place is also the same, viz. [Page 13] Ramatha, in all these Texts, both in the Hebrew and Chaldee Paraphrast *.

BUT the RAMAH where SAMUEL'S Father dwelt is also expresly called, in the 1st Chapter at the 1st Verse, RAMATHAIM-ZOPHIM of Mount Ephraim. (1) RAMATHAIM — in the dual Number: i. e. either as Dr. Lightfoot renders it. One of the Two Ramahs; or rather as Tremelius, Junius and Malvenda — the D [...]uble Ramah, there being four or five Ramahs in the Land of Israel, and as Jerusalem is called Jerusalaim, because it consisted of two Cities joined together. And (2) Ramathaim-ZOPHIM of Mount Ephraim; because it was the Ramah which was scituate on that Part of Mount Ephraim which was called Zophim. By which we may see that Ramatha and Ramathaim-Zophim are the same▪ and that SAMUEL'S Ramah was in the Tribe of Ephraim .

NOW Zophim it seems lay North of Jerusalem, and signifies a Prospect. The SYRIACK therefore renders it, — The Hill of Prospects, and the ARABACK — The Hill of Discovery: (B) And Dr. Lightfoot tells us, that behind a Valley stretched out from Zion northward, the Land swell'd into an Hill at the Place which thence was called ZOPHIM; because from thence there was a Prospect of the Country round about, and especially towards Jerusalem, which here 1st appeared to view from that Quarter of Israel. Here therefore seems to begin a Region [...] Hills called ZO­PHIM running Northward into the mountainous Tribe [Page 14] of Ephraim; upon one of which stood RAMAH, the Abode of SAMUEL.

BUT the Region rather seems to take it's Name from ZUPH or ZOPH one of his own Ancestors, of whom we read in the same Verse with Ramathaim-Zophim, and who is also called ZOPHAI in 1 Chron. vi.26. Junius and Tremelius therefore render it — The Double Ramah of the ZOPHITES; Because con­sisting of two contiguous Cities and in the Land of the Sons of ZUPH. And agreably we find in the Chapter but one after our Text, that when Saul had passed thro' the Land of the Benjamites, He came to the Land of ZUPH and therein the City where SA­MUEL lived; By the 11th. v. that it stood upon a Hill; By the 12th, that there was an high Place or great Altar there which was under his Direction; by the 13th and six following Verses, that there were therein either two several Hills or one Part of the same ascending above the other; And by the 16th, that this was out of the Land of Benjamin.

BUT the punctual Scituation of RAMAH seems to be now uncertain. Some of the Ancients indeed tell us that it lay in the neighbourhood of Lydda; and many Moderns imagine it to be the same with Ra­mola, a little South-Westward of Lydda and within a dozen Miles of the Sea. But Ramola lies near North West from Jerusalem; and the Learned R [...]land also says is a modern City and in a very plain Country, which is not agreable to the Character of the Seat of SA­MUEL. (r) It therefore rather seems that RAMAH lay further Eastward in the Hilly Part of Ephraim: and on this account the better served for the yearly Concourse of the Northern Tribes for Judgment.

FROM hence it seems He Began his Circuit, and first went Eastward, which is across the Land, to BETHEL.

[Page 15]NOW BETHEL signifies the House of the mighty GOD: and so therefore Junius and Tremelius here translate it▪ and think by BETHEL is not here in­tended the proper Name of a City, but the City Kir­jathjearim, where was now the House of the Ark of the mighty GOD of JACOB: and that SAMUEL chose this Place, because of the Advantage of the annual Congress of the Tribes of ISRAEL thither, according to the Law in Exod. xxiii.17.

BUT this is very unlikely: Because the Tabernacle appears to be the Place of these Conventions▪ where were both the Altars and other Conveniencies for Pub­lick Sacrifice and Entertainment of the Congregation, and where the High Priests with their inferiour Or­ders constantly resided. And then the Historian plainly here recites the proper Names of the other Cities whi­ther SAMUEL went: and there being a famous City named BETHEL, He must needs intend the Name in the same proper sense as He did the others.

NOW, BETHEL was scituate to the West of Hai; having a Mountain between them, whereon ABRAHAM pitch'd his Tent and built an Altar, be­fore He went down to Egypt *. It lay South of Shiloh , upon a Hill , and was called Luz at first: But JACOB having there a Divine Vision, when He fled from the Face of Esau; He gave it the Name of BETHEL, i. e. The House, or rather the Place of GOD (r) There He set up a Stone Pillar for a lasting Memorial of it : and from hence the City became renowned among his Offspring. In the Days of JOSHUA it was the Seat of one of the Kings of Canaan, who is reckoned among the Number of those who were smitten by JOSHUA and the Children of ISRAEL *. Tho' it seems as if the City were not taken till after JOSHUA'S Death .

[Page 16]IN Josh. xvi.1. 'Tis said, The Lot of the Sons of Joseph fell from Jordan by Jericho to the Wilderness which goeth up from Jericho thro'out MOUNT BE­THEL; In Chap. xviii.13, that the Border of Benja­min came to the South side of it; and in the 22d Verse, 'tis reckon'd among the Cities allotted to Benjamin. But in Judges 1.22,—25. we read, that the House of Joseph went up and smote it with the Edge of the Sword; and in 1 Chro. vii.28. That it was the Habi­tation and Possession of the Sons of Ephraim.

BY this we see that BETHEL was a City in the Borders between the Tribes of Benjamin and Ephraim: And as 'tis likely that the Border-Cities were to be possess'd by those of either neighbouring Tribe that wou'd first go up and take them from the Canaanites; the Tribe of Ephraim first went up and seized BE­THEL, and made it theirs.

BUT by the Scituation of it, about the midst of the Land every way▪ we see how well it served for the Concourse of the midland People, on either side, to SAMUEL for Judgment.

FROM hence, He made his further Progress East­ward still, to GILGAL.

NOW GILGAL was a very famous Place which lay on the East of Jericho near Jordan. There the Is­raelites first encamped upon their coming out of Jor­dan and entering the Land of Canaan, which was on the 10th Day of the first Month, * being Forty Years from their leaving Egypt. There they set up the Twelve Stones they took from the midst of the River, as a lasting Monument of their passing thro' it on dry Ground . There on the Day following, all their Males were Circumcised which had been born in the Wilderness for the 40 Years they had been journeying [Page 17] thro' it, and the Reproach of EGYPT roll'd away; on which account the Place receiv'd the Name of GILGAL, i. e. Rolling away . There on the 14th Day of the same Month they first kept the Passover in the Land of Canaan: and by their Uncircumcision it seems as if they had not kept one for Forty Years before: and in Two or Three Days after, the Manna ceased *. There they kept their Camp for several Years together : from thence went out their Ar­mies to fight the Canaanites; and thither they returned with Spoils and Victories.

IN fine, There the Tabernacle rested till the Land was for the most part conquer'd and divided, when 'twas reared up at Shiloh in the Tribe of Ephraim. However GILGAL yet appears in the Days of SAMUEL, to be a Place of great Resort for publick Sacrifice and Worship; * which SAMUEL therefore chose to assem­ble the People to, when He publickly invested Saul with the Royal Dignity . And by the Scituation of it on the Eastern Borders of the Land of Canaan, it ap­pears to be a Place convenient for the Tribes of ISRAEL on the other side of Jordan to repair for Judgment.

FROM hence He seems to have turn'd about and travelled Westward, across the Land, to MIZPEH

NOW MIZPEH signifies an High Place or Place of Speculation: By which we may suppose it on a high Hill of a very fair Prospect round it: And of several men­tioned in Scripture, there are Two especially remark­able.

THE first in Gilead beyond Jordan and in the Tribe of Gad; where Laban overtaking Jacob, they set up a Pile of Stones as as a publick Witness of the League [Page 18] between them. Gen. xxxi.49. Here the Israelites as­sembled themselves together and encamped against the Ammonites, who dwelt on their Eastern Borders, Judg. x.17. And here they made Jeptha their Head and Judge, who had his Residence in the same City, Judg. xi.8, — 11, and 34.

BUT the most famous MIZPEH seems to be on the Western Border of Benjamin and Judah. And it being a Border City may possibly be ascribed to them both, As in Judges xv.38. & xviii.36. It lay in a Place convenient for the General Assembly both of these and of the other Tribes, and has been renowned for their frequent Congress on great Occasions. For there they gathered together as one Man before the LORD, to go up against the Benjamites of Gibeah, Judges xx.1. Thither SAMUEL also called them, when He brought them to a Publick Reformation, and en­tered on his Judicial Office, as we observed before: and there He again assembled them, to find out by Let the Man whom GOD would have to be their King; and Saul being discovered was there first Proclaimed. 1 Sam. x.17— 24.

Hither SAMUEL made his yearly Journies to Judge them: and by the Scituation of the Place between Je­rusalem and the Sea, it appears to lie convenient for the Concourse of the South-western People of ISRAEL to meet Him.

AND thus having visited the principal Cities which were then in the Land; He finished his Circuit, and returned to RAMAH: For there was his House: And yet even there, He did not give up Himself to an in­dolent or supine Life; But there He still continued to receive their Appeals and Judge them.

THUS He seems to have Chosen the most conve­nient Cities, for the easier Confluence of the People to Him, from every Quarter. He minded not his own Advantage or Ease so much as theirs: and least they [Page 19] should lose too much Expence or Time in coming to his House at Ramah, He travels about, and carries them Publick Justice. And herein he neither regarded the Inclemencies of the Weather, nor Inconvenience of Inns or Roads in those Hilly Countries, nor spared his Pains for the Good of the People.

TO all these Places He constantly went, and Judged them. The Syriak seems well to render it — He judged ISRAEL and all those Regions, i. e. not only those principal Cities, but all the Countries round them. In them He exercised his Judicial Power for the Publick Interest: In them He yearly held his Courts of Justice: And there He received their Appeals from the Inferiour Judges, He patiently heard their Pleas, and decided their Controversies. There He also doubtless enquired into the Manners of the People round about: He restrained and corrected the Vicious, He gave forth righteous Decisions: And in them He always displayed his superiour Wisdom, Goodness, Equity, and strict regard to the Good of the Publick and the Laws of GOD.

AND to all these Places He went in Circuit from Year to Year, or at least so long as his Age per­mitted, and never allowed his own Affairs to hinder Him.

2. WE are now to observe his strict Integrity.

FOR tho' this be not so expresly mentioned in the Text, it is plainly couched and implied. For the Words must needs be meant as an historical Recommendation of Him in the exemplary Character of a Public Judge; and his Uprightness is also intimated in the great Pains He took and the Fatigues He endured, in the Exe­cution of this high Office: The like to which we read not of any other Judge before Him.

BUT to illustrate this, I shall only cite — That most open and solemn Appeal He made both to GOD [Page 20] Himself and the whole Congregation of ISRAEL in Gilgal, with the united Voice of all the Tribes in his Applause; when He was much advanc'd in Years, and was laying down a great Part of the weight of Govern­ment, upon SAUL'S Accession to the Kingdom, 1 Sam. xii.1,—5. And SAMUEL said to all ISRAEL — ‘Be­hold, I have hearkned to your voice in all that ye said unto me, and have made a King over you: And now behold, the King walks before you, and I am old and grey-headed, and behold my Sons are with you, and I have walk'd before you from my Childhood to this Day: Behold, Here I am; witness against me before the LORD, and before his ANOINTED: Whose Ox have I taken? or whose Ass have I taken? or whom have I defrauded? whom have I oppressed? or of whose hand have I received a Bribe to blind mine Eyes therewith? and I will restore it to you.’ And they said; Thou hast not defrauded, neither hast Thou taken ought of any man's hand. And He said to them, ‘The LORD is Witness against you, and his ANOINTED is Witness this Day, that ye have not found ought in my hand:’ And they answered, He is Witness.

HOW free and open, how unanimous and strong is this repeated Publick Testimony of all the Tribes of ISRAEL, to SAMUEL'S perfect Uprightness thro'out his whole and long Administration!


3. WE must now observe His stedfast Perseverance in this laborious Office.—And SAMUEL judged ISRAEL all the Days of his Life.

IN Chap. viii.1. He is said to be Old, before He called his Sons to help Him in the Judicial Office. Now a Man can scarce be stiled Old till he be Sixty Years of Age: nor can we well suppose his Sons were grown to a sufficient Gravity and Wisdom for such a weighty, serious and superior Employment▪ till they were arriv'd at Forty ▪ which will also raise their Father to at least Three-score Years.

[Page 21]SOMETIME after, when the Elders of ISRAEL gathered themselves together and came to ask Him for a King, they began their Speech with saying, Be­hold, Thou art old, &c. which it was not likely they would say to SAMUEL'S Face unless his Age were far advanc'd indeed, and his natural Powers of Judging or at least of Travelling were very visibly declined thro' Age; and therefore was alleged as one great Reason of their asking for a King to Judge them.

AND after this at SAUL'S establishment at Gilgal, SAMUEL says of Himself, in Chap. xii.2. Behold I am old and grey-headed, &c. And yet it seems He still went on in this great Employment to the Day of his Death, which was many Years, some think fifteen or sixteen after; and from Acts xiii.20, 21. compared with the History of the Judges, that in the whole He judged ISRAEL for Forty Years.

WITH his hoary Head, to be sure, He sat on the Judgment Seat: He There desir'd to spend his Life in the Publick Service. And There — what a plea­sing Reverence must strike the Soul, to see this great and aged Man, with the flowing and silver Locks of his unshaven Head, as He had been a pure Nazarite from the Birth, and his Face grown shining with Ma­turity of Sanctity and Wisdom! Even his humble Mind could not but know the Veneration of the People for Him, their Delight to see Him, and that his meer Appearance in their Assemblies cou'd not but raise their Minds into an Esteem of Piety.

BUT how could He Judge ISRAEL all the Days of his Life, when SAUL was made their King to Rule and Judge them?

TO this I answer— That the Heads of ISRAEL seem to ask for a King to Judge them, not to lay SAMUEL by while He was capable to discharge the Office, nor indeed ever to supply his Place in the Courts of Judicature; But partly to relieve Him of the Burthen of Civil Government, as He grew thro' [Page 22] Age unable, and partly to head their Armies: tho' chiefly indeed, from a weak Affectation of worldly Pomp and Grandeur, which they liked better than the plain and simple way of Government they had been used to, that they might have one among them in the Power, State and Splendor of a King, like the Kings of other Nations. Chap. viii.11,— 20.

SAUL was therefore chiefly employed in martial Af­fairs all his Days. And besides He knew that SAMUEL had a vastly greater Skill in civil Matters, the People were entirely satisfied with SAMUEL'S Presidence in their Courts of Justice: and SAUL cou'd never presume to controul so divine a Person, to interfere with Him, or deprive the People of so great a Benefit. And even SAUL Himself in the Highth of Power appears afraid of the more awful Prophet: and SAMUEL on all Oc­casions appears superior to Him when they come toge­ther. For SAMUEL more than once severely reproves and threatens Him: He also sent the King to destroy Amalek; and when SAUL had spared Agag, contrary to the Law of GOD, Samuel went to SAUL, brought Him to confess his Sin, to ask even SAMUEL'S Pardon, and to intreat of SAMUEL to honour Him before the People with his Presence: And then SAMUEL com­mands King Agag to be brought before Him, slew Him before SAUL'S Eyes, and returned to his House at Ra­mah, Chap. xiii. and xv.

SAMUEL therefore still retains his great Authority, especially in civil Matters, and continues in the Exer­cise thereof till sometime before his Death, when He took his final Leave of SAUL; and then seems to be grown too Old to go the Circuits, and retires to his House at Ramah. However, There, no doubt He still employ'd his remaining Life in Judging all that repaired to Him, till He wholly resigned the publick Business, and compos'd Himself to Die.

BUT we must hasten to consider

[Page 23]IV. and lastly, HIS shining PIETY.‘And His Return was to RAMAH, for there was his House, and there He Judged ISRAEL; and there HE BUILT AN ALTAR TO THE LORD.

THIS latter Clause, at the first view indeed, may only seem an Instance of his Family Religion: But when we come to enquire into the Use of ALTARS, we shall clearly see it reaches to every Branch of Piety.

NOW there were Three sorts of ALTARS mentioned in Scripture (1) An Altar of WITNESS — As was the Altar built on the Eastern side of Jordan by the Two Tribes and half there seated, upon their Parting from the other and Returning to their Possessions, Josh. xxii.10,—34. But this was a mere Monument of Piety, as Deodate terms it: And one wou'd think, without either Grates to support the Offerings or Air-Vents to fan the Fire, as the other had. (2) An Altar of INCENSE, which was order'd to be overlaid with pure Gold, and made only for the Burning of the sweetest Spice and Frankincense, every Morning and Evening, in the Holy Place of the Tabernacle and Temple; and was peculiar to them, Exod. xxx.1,— 10, 34, — e. and xxxvii.25, — e. (3) And lastly, An Altar for SACRIFICE: which was this of SAMUEL'S as we may see in the 9th Chapter of this History.

THO' Cain and Abel brought their Offerings to the LORD; yet NOAH was the first we read of who built an Altar, and this for Sacrifice; which was upon his coming out of the Ark on Mount Ararat, at the ceasing of the Deluge, Gen. viii.20. The next was ABRAHAM, who built Four Altars at so many several Places in the Land of CANAAN: And then Isaac, Ja­cob, Moses, Joshua, Gideon, Man [...]ah, and the Eleven Tribes, in others: And now comes SAMUEL, and builds an Altar to the LORD at Ramah.

THE Use of this kind of Altars, was for Offering Sacrifice, both of Atonement and Thanksgiving: and their Design was to show the Necessity of Satisfaction [Page 24] to be made to the Justice of GOD for the Sins of Men, in order to obtain Peace and Favour with Him; and to lead the Mind to the great Sacrifice of CHRIST, as the only sufficient Purchase of every Mercy.

A Sacrifice of Atonement was for the Expiation of Sin, for averting the Anger and Judgments of GOD both f [...]lt and feared, and for obtaining his Favour and Blessing. So JACOB offered Sacrifice, on Mount Gilead, as He was going to meet his Brother ESAU. * and at Beersheba, as He was going down to AEGYPT . So GIDEON built an Altar in Ophra, and offered Sa­crifice for Deliverance from the Midianites . So the ELEVEN TRIBES at Shiloh, for Success against the Benjamites . And so SAMUEL at Mizpeh, in the Be­ginning of the War with the Philistines, as we have observ'd before.

AND a Sacrifice of Joy and Praise — To express their Thankfulness to GOD for Mercies, and to give Him publickly the Glory of them. So NOAH — for his Deliverance from a Twelve Month's universal Flood: And so ABRAHAM *, ISAAC , JACOB , and MANO­AH , built their Altars, upon the destinguishing Ap­pearances of GOD to them: So MOSES for the Victory over the Amalakites at Rephedim *: And JOSHUA upon his Entrance into the Land of Canaan .

IN fine, Both ABRAHAM built an Altar on a Moun­tain between Hai and Bethel ▪ JACOB, at Shalem ; and MOSES, under Sinai *, where they severally pitch'd their Tents, as a constant Means of Religious Worship, both in Sacrifices of Expiation and Thanksgiving.

[Page 25]SAMUEL'S Altar then, was a continual Instrument both of Family and Publick Worship, and a standing Sign of his eminent Devotion — That He took Care to Live in good Terms with GOD, to implore Him constantly for needful Favours, and to return Him grate­ful Praises for the Bestowment of them.

BUT when SAMUEL had wrested Israel out of the oppressive Hands of the Philistines — Why did He not restore the ARK to the TABERNACLE at Shiloh? Why did He not himself return to that sacred Place and Service, according to his early Dedication? Why did He not attend the Worship there as well as ELI, who Judged ISRAEL notwithstanding? Or, tho' He liv'd at Ramah, Why did He not from time to time repair to the Altar before the Sanctuary, according to the Law in, Exod. xxix.36,—e. & Deut. xii.17,—27?

NOW the Reasons of this Conduct may be such as these —

IN Psalm lxxviii.60. We read, that upon the ARK'S being carried from Shiloh by the Sons of ELI, the LORD forsook the TABERNACLE of Shiloh; v.67, that He refused the Tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the Tribe of Ephraim; and v.68, but chose the Tribe of JUDAH, the Mount ZION which He loved. This might well be reveal'd to SAMUEL, and He in time communicate the same to DAVID, who it seems were very intimate and agreed together about the seve­ral Orders of the Priests and Levites in the House of GOD . And this might be one great Reason why as soon as DAVID came to the Throne of Israel, the very first thing He did was to take Jerusalem from the Jebusites and dispossess them of Mount ZION; and when He had fortified and adorn'd the Mountain, He remov'd the ARK into a Tabernacle He had there prepared for it.

[Page 26]HOWEVER, It seems that by a Divine Interposition, the Ark and Tabernacle of MOSES were never al­lowed to come together in SAMUEL'S Days.

FOR the ARK remain'd at Kirjathjearim, unless when 'twas carried to the Army on some Occasions, and then returned thither, till King DAVID translated it to Zion. And the TABERNACLE seem'd to rest at Shiloh, to the Reign of SAUL; who 'tis likely, that both the Tabernacle and Conventions of the People might be nearer to Him, ordered it with ELI'S Fa­mily, ‘to NOE, in his own Tribe of Benjamin: As 'tis probable that JOSHUA for the same Reason, re­moved it before, from Gilgal to Shiloh in his Tribe of Ephraim. (a.j.) But on the Ruin of NOE by SAUL, even before SAMUEL died, the Tabernacle seems to be sent to GIBEON in the same Tribe, where it res­ted to the Reign of DAVID. For when He had trans­ported the ARK to Zion, and left ASAPH with his Brethren to serve before it constantly as every Days work required; He at the same time left ZADOK the Priest with his Brethren the Priests, before the TA­BERNACLE of the LORD at GIBEON, to offer burnt Offerings to the LORD on the Altar of the burnt Offering continually, Morning and Evening, and to do according to all that was written in the Law of the LORD, &c: And Here it still continued as the most publick Seat of Sacrifice and Worship, under ZA­DOK, till King SOLOMON removed IT with all it's Vessels, as well as the ARK, into the TEMPLE *. And thus at length they met together in the same House, in about One hundred and thirty Years from their Sepa­ration.

BUT to Return — In such a dissolved State of the Sanctuary Worship, SAMUEL seems to have a special, divine Allowance, both to leave the Tabernacle-Ser­vice, and to apply Himself intirely to Judge & Go­vern [Page 27] Israel, grown much more large and populous than in E [...]'S Days, and required the whole of his Strength and Time — as also to Reside at RAMAH as a proper Place, and there to Build an Altar — ready at hand upon all Occasions.

UNDER this head of Piety, we might here observe, His high Regard for the Publick Worship, his De­pendance on the Great GOD for the Conduct and Success of his Affairs, his constant solemn Applica­tions to HIM, and his Gratefull Care to return HIM all the Glory — of which this ALTAR was a continual Witness.

BUT of all these I shall only single out One Instance— which was his Eminence for the Spirit and Duty of PRAYER.— He delighted in it; He set much by it; He profess'd and practic'd it in the most open manner.

WHEN He first directs the Tribes to Assemble, He does it in such Terms as these —Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I WILL PRAY FOR YOU to the LORD. When they were met together, He turns the Day into a Day of Prayer and Fasting: And no doubt He led and bore a chief Part in the Publick Supplications of that vast Assembly. And when the Day was over, and the Lords of the Philistines came up against them; the Children of Israel were afraid — and said to SAMUEL — Cease not to CRY to the LORD our GOD for us, that He will save us, &c.— They had a greater Confidence in the earnest Prayers of SAMUEL, than in all their Forces.

AND we quickly see their mighty Efficacy. For the History goes on to tell us — That SAMUEL took a sucking Lamb, and offered it for a Burnt Offering wholly to the LORD; and SAMUEL Cried to the LORD for Israel, and the LORD heard Him— and thundred with a great Thunder on that Day upon the Philistines and discomfited them, and they were smitten before Israel. And then to ascribe the Honour [Page 28] of all to GOD, He sets up There a Pillar of Stone, and calls it EBENEZER, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us — as a lasting and publick Mo­nument of Praise to the GOD of Israel. And upon this we read — That the Philistines were subdued, and they came no more into the Coasts of Israel: And the hand of the LORD was against the Philistines all the Days of SAMUEL: and the Cities which the Philistines had taken from Israel were restored, &c. Chap. vii.

WHAT a great Blessing was this one Man, by his earnest Intercessions, to that whole People! Of which they were all so sensible that in a Time of the most fearful Tokens of the Divine Displeasure, they apply to Him as their powerfull Advocate with Heaven; Chap. xii.19. And all the People said to SAMUEL, Pray for thy Servants to the LORD thy GOD that we Die not, &c. To which He nobly Answers, ver. 23.—GOD forbid that I should Sin against the LORD, in ceasing to Pray for you, &c. His extraordinary Pre­valence in Prayer, was therefore after celebrated in such Terms as these, Psal. xcix.6. Moses and Aaron among his Priests; and SAMUEL among them that Call upon his Name: They called on the LORD, and He an­swered them. And in Jer. xv.1. SAMUEL is join'd with MOSES, as Two of the most prevailing Men in Prayer with GOD, that ever were, to save a sinful People.

I might also mention several other Instances of his excelling Virtues▪ and the signal Honours done Him both by GOD and Israel: But the time wou'd fail me — I shall only say, — That far from Ruling in an Imperious manner, Behold his great Indulgence, as a tender Father, even to the displeasing Humours of the People. Chap. xii.1. And SAMUEL said to all Israel; Behold, I have hearkened to your Voice in all that ye said to me, &c. And yet what a mixture of Majesty was there in his Administration? [...]or when for a pri­vate Reason, He went to Sacrifice at Bethlehem, we [Page 29] read in Chap. xvi.4. The elders of the Town trembled at his coming. The Son of Sirach well observes, Chap. xlvi.14. By the LAW of the LORD He Judged the Congregation. And the Apostle PAUL in [...]olls Him a­mong the Prime Examples of Faith & Righteousness.

BUT we must come to observe, That at length this great and aged Pattern of Integrity and a Publick Spirit▪ of Zeal for GOD, and the Cause of Pi [...]ty — Resigns his Life — But he dies in the midst of universal La­mentations. The Tydings quickly fly all over the Land, and strike every Heart with Grief. The Tribes are all in motion, to see his last Remains, and attend them to the Grave. And perhaps there never was so great a Funeral in the World as SAMUEL'S For of Him alone of all the Judges and Kings of ISRAEL, we read in 1 Sam. xxv.1. That when He Died, ALL THE ISRAELITES were Gathered together, and Lamented, and Buried Him in his House at RAMAH. And both his Death and their universal Confluence and Mourning at his Funeral are remark'd again in Chap. xxviii.3. Now SAMUEL was Dead, and ALL ISRAEL had Lamented Him, and Buried Him in Ramah, even in his own City.

NOR their having a KING, nor SAMUEL'S advanced Years, nor his Decays of Nature prevented their ex­traordinary Sorrow. But they mourn the Loss of a PUB­LICK FATHER, who greatly Loved them, had spent his Life to serve them, and from the Days of his Youth had arose and shone an admir'd Example of Piety, Justice, Goodness, and every Publick Virtue that cou'd make a People Easy and Happy; and a whole Nation assembles to unite in Mourning, and take their Leave at his Grave.

AND thus — I have endeavour'd some De­scription of the extraordinary Life and Virtues of this ancient and most venerable Judge of ISRAEL. They are recorded in the sacred Volumns for the Admiration of every Age. Which puts me in mind of what the [Page 30] Learned Reland tells from Jerom, of the destinguish­ing Honours paid to SAMUEL by the Christian Greeks and Romans above Fourteen Hundred Years after his Death. For it seems, ARCADIUS a Christian Emperor of the East *, transported SAMUEL'S Bones from Ra­mah into Thrace: And as they were carried along, the People receiv'd them with so great a Joy, as if they had seen the Prophet present and alive among them; And the whole Land from Canaan to Chalcedon on the Shoar of the Bosphorus over against Byzantium, which was about a Thousand Miles, seem'd to be cover'd with continued Crouds of People, with one Voice ringing forth aloud the Praise of our GREAT REDEEMER, whose lively Type and faithful Servant SAMUEL was .

AND a Part of his Life, as the Time allow'd, has now been set before us, that We might also in this distant Place and Age admire the Grace of GOD in CHRIST which bestows such Gifts and Honours on the Sons of Men, and that we may be mov'd to aspire after them.

AND for the same Reason as He first raised up SA­MUEL, and then describ'd Him in perpetual Records; He is pleased still in successive Ages, to raise up others in their measures like Him; that He might give his People of every Generation a visible Evidence of what He is willing as well as able to do, and a living Exam­ple to charm them with the Beauty of Piety.

IT would therefore be to conceal his Grace, and with-hold his Honour; not to observe the same kind of his Goodness among our selves, nor Praise Him for it.

[Page 31]HEREIN, Let us then admire the eminent Gifts & Gra­ces of GOD, which have for so many Lustres of Years appeared in His late deceased Servant: Let our Minds rise up to the bounteous AUTHOR: Let us grate­fully return Him the whole Glory of them: And let us now review them, that we may see our past Ad­vantage and mourn our present Loss, and be mov'd to trace his bright Example.

LET the very CHILDREN first come along with me, and look thro' the Glass of his Life, and see his Early Piety. Look O Children, and see, How quiet and modest our Young Samuel sits at the Feet of his pious Parents; how full of Reverence and Affection to them, how ready and dutiful in all his Carriage: and how full of the Fear of GOD, how afraid of sinning against Him, how careful to read the Scriptures, and to Pray in Secret in his early Days!

LOOK into the School, and see, How submissively He behaves Himself; how full of Veneration and Love to his Master *, how mindful of every Instruction, how diligent in Learning his Books and improving in Know­lege: behold how pleas'd his Master is to observe it, and how greatly loves Him. There you may see the hope­full Bloom of his future Usefulness: And do you O Children, Learn to follow Him.

LET the RISING YOUTH now view Him in his growing Endowments. How carefull He is of preserv­ing his Purity, Innocence and unblemished Character, [Page 32] both in the Town, School, College, and every Com­pany. See how He aspires after higher Degrees of Piety: how He inclines his Ear to Wisdom, and applies his Heart to Understanding; How he cries after Knowledge, seeks her as Silver, and searches for her as for hidden Treasure; and how He more & more un­derstands the Fear of the LORD, finds more and more of the Knowledge of GOD, and grows in Wisdom.

SEE, How He carefully shuns the Society of the Vain and Frothy; How He esteems and honours the Pious and Learned, how He values their Love and gets into their familiar Acquaintance; how He constantly keeps and delights in their Company, how He daily grows in their Esteem and Affection: and how He improves in every kind of Accomplishment to appear on the pub­lick Stage with Honour and Do Good in the World.

AND now, Let us ALL lift up our Eyes and be­hold, with what Approbation and Pleasure The GOD of Heaven looks down upon Him in all his lovely Advances of Life▪ And how the kind Decrees brake forth and show what He has a mind to do for the Youth that Honours Him.

THO' at first design'd and trained up for the Ser­vice of the Christian Tabernacle; yet being by the call of Providence diverted from it, He is put into the early Possession of secular Wealth and Dignity: Nor this as into a Snare to ruin his Soul, or make an empty show in the World, but as into a larger Sphere and Power of employing his Talents for the Glory of GOD, and the Advantage of Men.

BEING in a great Measure adorn'd with the early Endowments of SAMUEL, especially cordial Love to his Country, eminent Knowledge of the Laws of GOD, Zeal to observe them, and promote their Observance in others, Humility, Prudence and a blameless Life; He is about the same Age, advanced by Heaven and [Page 33] the Choice of the People, as He, to be a Principal Councillour, Judge and Ruler among them *.

AND now, Let us see how He rises and moves in this exalted Orb: How his humble Mind remains the same, and therein shows it self superior to sub­lunary Greatness, but his Piety, Goodness and Wis­dom, not only continue but grow, until He gains a destinguishing Crown of Glory, as the wise Man styles it, to his Hoary Head, in the Course of Righ­teousness.

LET us look into the COUNCIL CHAMBER; and see his great Concern for the Honour of GOD; the Re­putation of Government ▪ and the Welfare of his Country, in their continued Liberty, Learning, Peace, good Or­der, Religion; and especially their perpetual Adherence to the inspired Scriptures, as the perfect Rule of Faith of Life and Worship, and the Fundamental Purpose of this Plantation. —And there, behold his Thoughtful­ness, Moderation, Prudence, Caution, Faithfulness, and Zeal and Courage on proper Occasions, tho' his Consti­tution chiefly inclin'd Him to great Gentleness.

‘AS He goes out to the GATE thro' the City, when He prepares his Seat in the Street, both the young and the aged arise and stand up. He puts on Righteousness and it cloaths Him: His Judgment is as a Robe and Diadem. He is Eyes to the Blind, and Feet to the Lame: a Father to the Poor, — to the Poor Indians I might especially say, for whom He has the tenderest Compassions▪ and the Cause which He knows not He searches out: He brakes the Jaws of the Wicked, and plucks the Spoil out of their Teeth.’

[Page 34]LET us enter into the COURTS OF JUSTICE; and see Him solemn, patient, grave and fixed in his Attach­ment to the Laws of GOD; a Terror to the Children of Belial; Defending the Poor and the Fatherless, do­ing Justice to the afflicted and needy; delivering the Poor and the needy, and ridding them out of the Hand of the Wicked. And while with an awful Brow He condemns the flagitious Criminal to Bodily Pains; his Bowels yearn and his Lips speak Life to the precious Soul.

SEE how his Appearance raises in every Mind an Expectation of Justice: and his snowy Locks like SA­MUEL'S adorn the Bench, attract every Eye to look on the more venerable Face they Crown, and make us wish his Place might never miss Him.

LET us go into the RELIGIOUS ASSEMBLIES; and there we see his Seat constantly filled, with the Bible before Him to try every Doctrine. See how He ad­mires and delights in the Beauty of every Divine Institu­tion. And there let us view and be like Him, in his reverent and careful Attention, his humble and devout Behaviour, and the gentle Fervour of his pious Soul within raising up a silent Light in his Countenance.

LET us visit his FAMILY; and there behold the strict and still Religion, the grave and comely Order. How every Sabbath is kept from Evening to Evening in a sacred manner; and every Day Morning and Evening the Scriptures read, and his Prayers with his Household go up as Incense to Heaven. How He instructs and councils those under his Care, and makes them easy and wise together. How free his Table to the learned and pious; How welcome is every Minister as an Ambassador of CHRIST; every Scholar treated with learned and entertaining Conversation, especially on the Holy Scrip­tures in their Originals; every Comer with Freedom and Courtesy; and every Poor with wise Advice and Alms.

[Page 35]LET us follow Him into EVERY PLACE & COM­PANY▪ and there admire and imitate the same con­tinual Vein of unaffected Piety, of condescending Kind­ness, of innocent and decent Alacrity; and of such en­gaging Meekness and Freedom of Speech, as make his Presence the Satisfaction of all about Him, the Love­liness of Piety visible, and the Ways thereof appear to be the ways of Wisdom and Pleasantness.

LET us now behold Him gently Descending the Stage of Life; as his Age grows on Him, first con­tracting his Circuit, then laying down one Publick Office after another, and at length retiring to his House like SAMUEL; that He might be gradually loosened from his earthly Cares, and have the greater Leisure to entertain Himself with the opening Views of that glorious Life which begins to dawn and rise upon Him, and will never decline.

Lastly, LET us attend on his DEATH-BED-side; and view his exemplary Patience, Submission, Resignation, Faith; and the same humble, heavenly and unruffled Calmness of Mind as were usual with Him in the Days of his Health. How precious were the Tho'ts & Dis­course of the REDEEMER still to Him: How He composes Himself to Die, as if He were only to sleep or rest in His gracious Arms. And when his Eyes were closed and his Speech had fail'd Him, his Hands yet constantly rising at every devout Meditation, till his Soul retires by undescernible Degrees from every Or­gan of Life, that it might take it's Flight to the Bles­sed Abodes: And then with what wonderful Ease and Gentleness it leaves them without so much as a parting Groan or the least Intimation of Sorrow.

THUS liv'd and died this venerable Judge of our Country, whom the GOD of our Fathers was pleased to raise up and continue to the present Generation, as a memorable Instance of our primitive Glory.

[Page 36]AND now, Let us be Thankful to HIM for preserving his destinguishing Course so long and conspicuous with us: And yet let us mourn the Loss of his Life and continual Prayers. Let us all take Care that this great Example may not rise up against us in the future Judg­ment to condemn or ashame us. Let us earnestly strive to follow Him in every Virtue. Let us encourage our selves with this —That the same Spirit which dwelt so brightly in Him, remains with GOD in an in­finite measure; and there's not the least of us all, but He can make as eminent in every Grace. And let us earnestly Pray, that the SPIRIT from on high may be poured out abundantly on all Orders and Ages among us —

‘— THAT He may raise up of our Sons for Pro­phets and of our Young Men for Nazarites and Ru­lers: that we may still have Judges as at the first, and Councillors as at the beginning: that we may be stiled a Place of Piety, and may know that the LORD, the mighty one of JACOB, is our Redeemer. That our Officers may all be Peace, and our Exactors Righteousness: that Violence may not be heard in our Land, nor Wasting or Destruction within our Bor­ders; but our Walls may be called Salvation, and our Gates, i. e. Our Council-Chambers and Courts of Justice, Praise. That the People may all be Righ­teous, and inherit the Land for ever: that the Sun may go down no more among us, nor the Moon withdraw Her shining, but the LORD may be our everlasting Light, the Days of Mourning ended, and our GOD our GLORY.’


AN ACCOUNT of the Deceased FROM THE Weekly News-Letter, No. 158. CORRECTED. BOSTON, January 8. 1729, 30.

ON the first of this Instant, at half an hour past Five in the Morning, after about a Month's Languishment, Died at his House here, the Honourable SAMUEL SEWALL, Esq in the 78th Year of his Age; who has for above Forty Years appeared a great Ornament of this Town and Country.

His Great Grand-father, HENRY SEWALL; Esq was a Linnen-Draper in the City of Coventry in Great-Britain, acquired a considerable Estate, was a very prudent Man, and more than once chosen Mayor of that ancient City. HENRY the eldest Son out of Dislike to the English Hierarchy, sent over his only Son HENRY then a Young Man to New-England in 1634, with neat Cattle and Provisions suitable for a new Plantation, who made his Pitch at Newbury, whither his Father soon followed. And on March 25. 1646, that his Son Married Mrs. JANE, the eldest Child of Mr STEPHEN and Mrs. ALICE DUMMER, who likewise then dwelt there under the Ministry of the Rev. Mr. THOMAS PARKER and Mr. JAMES NO [...]ES.

[Page 2]But this Climate being not agreable to Mr. DUMMER and Consort, they returned to England the Winter following, and their Son and Daughter SEWALL with them▪ who dwelt a while at Warwick, and then re­mov'd to Bishop-Stoke in Hampshire; where on Lord's Day March 28. 1652, this their eldest Son SAMUEL was Born, and baptiz'd in Stoke Church, May 4th fol­lowing, by the Rev. Mr. RASHLY, who was once a Member of the old Church in Boston, afterwards one of the ejected Ministers. Some Months after, the Family remov'd to Badsly in the same County, where another Son, the late Maj. STEPHEN SEWALL of Salem was Born, Aug. 19th 1657: And at Rumsey a neighbouring Market Town, their said eldest Son was first educated in the Grammar School, of which Mr. Figes was Master. But the Father returning to New-England in 1659, sent for his Family to come over to him; who arriv'd at Boston, Lord's Day July 6th 1661, with this their Son, then nine Years of Age.

Upon his going up to Newbury then the Place of his Father's Residence, he was sent to School to the Revd. and Excellent Mr. PARKER▪ under whom He made a laudable Proficiency till the Commencement in Aug. 166 [...], when He was admitted into HARVARD COLLEGE by the very learned and pious Mr. CHARLES CHAUNCY, who also gave Him his first Degree in 1671, being one of the last Classis which receiv'd Degrees from that famous President.

In 1674, He took his Degree of Master of Arts from President HOAR; and was early chosen a Tutor and Fellow in that House. But did not reside long there: for on February 28. 1675, 6. He was Married to Mrs. HANNAH the sole Daughter and Heir to the Honoura­ble JOHN HULL, Esq▪ of Boston, with whom He had a plentiful Estate: Upon which He setled here, and liv'd and died an honourable Member of the SOUTH CHURCH, of which He had the satisfaction to see one of his own Sons become a worthy Pastor.

[Page 3]In 1684, He, was chosen a Magistrate of the Massa­chusetts Colony. In the disorderly time of Sir Edmond's Government, toward the end of 1688, He went a Voyage to England: Upon his landing there, met the surprizing News of the happy REVOLUTION: and re­turned hither in the following Year. In 1692, He was appointed by King WILLIAM and Queen MARY in their Royal CHARTER, one of the first Council for their Majesties in this Province, into which He was an­nually chosen and sat till 1725, when He resign'd his Election, having out lived all the others nominated in that Fundamental Constitution. In 1692 He was made one of the Judges, and in 1718, Chief Justice of our Superior Courts of Judicature thro' the Province, in which He sat till 1728, when his Infirmities growing on Him, He resigned that Place also. In 1715, He was made Judge of Probates for this County of Suffolk, and continued in that Office till 1728, when He laid it down: it being the last Publick Post wherein He serv'd and honoured his Country.

For his CHARACTER —I shall sum it up in this Epi­tome — That He was universally and greatly reve­renc'd, esteemed, and beloved among us for his eminent Piety, Learning and Wisdom; his grave and vene­rable Aspect and Carriage; his instructive, a [...]able and chearful Conversation; his strict Integrity and regard to Justice; his extraordinary tender and compassionate Heart; his neglect of the World; his abundant li­berality; his catholick and publick Spirit▪ his critical Acquaintance with the Latin, Greek and Hebrew Lan­guages, the Latin Poets, and above all the Holy Scrip­tures in their inspir'd Originals; his Zeal for the Purity of instituted Worship; his constant, diligent and reverent Attendance on it, both in the Church and Family; his Love for the Churches, People and Mi­nisters, the civil and religious Interests of this Country; his tender Concern for the aboriginal Natives; and as the Crown of all, His Moderation, Peaceableness▪ and Humility; which being all united in the same Person, [Page 4] and in an high Degree and Station, rendered Him one of the most shining Lights and Honours of the Age and Land wherein He lived, and worthy of a very distinguishing regard in the New English Histories.

He liv'd happily with the Wife of his Youth for about Forty three Years, who left him a sorrowful Widower, October 19. 1717. He afterwards Married two other virtuous and worthy Consorts, viz. Mrs. ABIGAIL TILLY, and Mrs. MARY GIBBS who is now his Mourn­ing Widow. He had Issue only by the first; by whom He had seven Sons and seven Daughters: two of the former and one of the latter only Survive Him. His Un­derstanding continued with Him to his last Hours: He Died in Peace: And was yesterday honourably Inter'd.

The END.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.