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Mr. Raynolds's Election SERMON. May 12th, 1757.

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THE Kingdom is the LORD's , OR, GOD the Supreme Ruler and Governour of the World.

A SERMON PREACHED before the GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE COLONY OF CONNECTICUT, At HARTFORD, On the DAY of their ANNIVERSARY ELECTION, MAY 12th, 1757.

By PETER RAYNOLDS, A.M. Pastor of the Church of CHRIST in Enfield.

NEW-LONDON: Printed and Sold by JOHN GREEN, Printer to the GOVERNOR, & COMPANY, 1757.

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ORDERED, That ROGER WOLCOTT, junr. Esq and Capt. EPHRAIM TERRY, Return the Thanks of this Assembly to the Reverend Mr. PETER RAYNOLDS, for his Sermon delivered (on the 12th Day of this Instant May) before this Assembly, and desire a Copy thereof that it may be Printed.

George Wyllys, Secr.
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AN Election SERMON.

PSALM XXII. 28.‘FOR the Kingdom is the Lord's: And He is Governour among the Nations.’

THE Necessity and Importance of civil Government, to the Welfare of Mankind, and the manifold Ad­vantages of it to humane Society, have been so often, and so well treated of upon such Occasions as this; that it is needless to add any thing to what has been said by my Reverend Fathers who have gone before me, on this Subject.

But after all that Man, that the wisest and best of Men, in the most exalted Stations can do, there Manifestly needs a superiour Wis­dom, Power and Goodness, to govern the World, and order the great Affairs of King­doms and Nations to the best and wisest Purposes.

[Page 6]It will not therefore be improper or unsea­sonable to raise our Thoughts to the Blessed and only Potentate, and to consider something of his universal Empire and Dominion over all Nations, yea over all Creatures, and all Events; when the Heads and Rulers of our Tribes are assembled, to give Thanks to GOD for his great Goodness to this People, in the many distinguishing Privileges, which thrô his good Providence, we have been, and are yet indulged with; and to seek his Guidance and Blessing on our public Interests and Con­cerns; particularly, upon the important Af­fairs that lay before our General Assembly; especially, at such a Season as this, when our Nation and Land are involved in the Calami­ties of War, when Kings of the Earth are set­ting themselves, and Rulers and Kingdoms combining and taking counsel together against us, and not against us only, but, as it is ap­prehended, against the whole Protestant Inte­rest, and the Reformed Churches in general.

'Tis just matter of Support and Comfort that GOD governs the World, that the Supreme Ordering and Disposal of all things is in the Hands of infinite Wisdom, Power, and Good­ness: The LORD reigneth, let the Earth re­joyce: let the Multitude of the isles be glad thereof. Psal. 97.1. It adds Weight to the delightful Thought, that the Administra­tion [Page 7] of this universal Government, is put into the Hands of CHRIST, our great Mediator, whom God hath set at his own Right hand in heavenly Places — and hath put all things under his Feet, and gave Him to be Head over all things to the Church Eph. 1.20.22.

This Psalm, wherein is our Text, is un­doubtedly a Prophecy of CHRIST, there are several Passages of it expressly applied to Him in the New Testament, and there are some Pas­sages in it, that can be applied to none else in their strictest and most proper Sense, and can belong to David, who [...] be here con­sidered as a Type of Christ in a figurative and metaphorical Sense only. — The deep Abasement, and bitter and unparallel'd Sufferings of our Blessed Saviour, — The very kind, and manner, and circumstances of his Death, his glorious Exaltation, and the spread­ing and propagation of his Kingdom thrô the World, are here foretold, and some re­markable Circumstances attending them, so very minutely pointed out; and all was so exactly fulfilled in our blessed Saviour Jesus Christ. as to give very convincing Evidence that this is indeed the CHRIST, the promised Saviour of the World.

What the inspired Apostle saith of Him Phil. 2 6,—10. is here foretold, and may serve as a Comment or Illustration on great [Page 8] Part of this Psalm: viz. That being in the form of GOD, He thought it not Robbery to be equal with GOD: But made himself of no Re­putation and took upon him the form of a Ser­vant; and was made in the likeness of Men: and being found in Fashion as a Man, be hum led himself and became obedient unto Death, even the Death of the Cross Wherefore GOD also hath highly exalted him, and given him a Name which is above every Name: that in the Name of JEsUS every Knee should bow, &c.

CHRIST was raised from the deepest A­basement and Sufferings, to the highest Dignity, Honour and Glory: This gives Hope to his People when in a low afflicted State, that Light will sooner or later arise to them out of Dark­ness, since He who once suffered for them, in their Stead, as well as for their Good, now lives and reigns above, to dispense the Bles­sings He died to purchase, and always has shown, and will always show, a very tender Concern for his Church and People whom He has redeemed with his own Blood. Let the Prospect look never so dark and threatning, which way soever else we turn our Eves; yet here Light arises, and we may find something to bear up our Hearts and Hopes, when we fix them upon the all-disposing Providence of GOD, especially, as it is administred by Christ our great Mediator, whom GOD has set as [Page 9] King upon his holy Hill of Zion, Psal. 2.6. [...] the [...] of our [...] refer di­rectly to the Mediatorial Kingdom of CHRIST, or in a more general way [...] the supreme and [...] Providence of GOD, they are in either View full of Instruction and En­couragement, and may, I hope, suggest some Thoughts; not altogether unsuitable to our present Circumstances, and the present Oc­casion.

What I shall attempt in speaking to them shall be.

I. Briefly to Illustrate, and Confirm the im­portant Truth contained in them. And then,

II. To Improve, and Apply it to the present Occasion.

The Words of our Text very plainly and strongly assert▪ GOD's supreme and universal Empire, and Dominion over all Nations, yea over all Creatures: For the Kingdom is the LORD's and He is Governor among the Nations. And what we have First to do is,

I. Briefly to Illustrate, and Confirm this Important Truth, viz That GOD is the Sovereign of the World, the supreme, ab­solute, and universal LORD and Ruler of the whole Creation

[Page 10]GOD has a Two fold Kingdom in the World — The Kingdom of his Power, or Pro­vidence: And the Kingdom of his Grace. The Time will not allow to consider these [...], they are both included in his uni­versal Empire, and Dominion. And,

That this universal Empire and Dominion belongs to GOD, is a Truth so evident, both from Scripture, and Reason, and so generally acknowleg [...]d by allwise Men, in all Parts, and Ages of the World, that there needs little to be said for the Proof of it.

Omitting therefore the Arguments that offer themselves from the Nature and Per­fections of GOD. &c.

To Christians the plain, and express Tes­timony of sacred Scripture is Proof abundantly sufficient; and [...] assures us, That the LORD hath [...] in the Hea­vens; [...] over all. Psal. 13.19. [...] High GOD, whose Dominion is an ever. [...] Dominion, and his Kingdom is from Generation to Generation, and [...] the Earth are repu­ted as nothing: and He [...] according to his Will in the [...] of Heaven, and among the [...] is of the Earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto Him, what doest Thou? Dan 4 34.35. That He doth great Things and unsearchable marve [...]lous Things, &c. see [Page 11] Job 5.9.—13. and 9.4.—10. In a Word, That He worketh all Things according to the Counsel of his own Will Eph I.II. and Psal. 135 6 Whatsoever. &c. And observation, and Experience give in their Testimony to confirm this; How else is it, that the whole Frame of Nature, without Reason or Design of its own, and notwithstanding the contrary, opposite, and jarring [...] of the various Beings of which it consists, is preserved in its Beauty, Harmony, and Order, for so many Ages: that the various Sorts of Creatures are preserved, and provided for: that Man con­tinues upon Earth: and some tolerable Peace and Order is upheld in the World, notwith­standing Mens Lusts and Corruptions: that the smiles of Heaven attend the Practice of Virtue and serious Religion; and its frowns, the Practice of Sin and Wickedness, thô not so constantly, as to anticipate, or give just Oc­casion to question a future Judgment; yet so visibly as to give strong Conviction, that verily there is a [...] Reward for the Righteous: verily He is a GOD that Judgeth in the Earth as Psal. 58. 11.

Would the Time allow us to view the several Parts of the Creation, we might easily observe, convincing and surprizing Proofs of the important Truth, now under our Consi­deration, in every Part of the Creation.

[Page 12]Here a large Field opens,—But I must confi [...]e myself to the [...] Limits.

We [...] vast Number, and Variety of Creatures of which the World [...], kept in that Religion, [...], Harmony, and Sub­serviency in the common God, [...] were at first put into; and [...] their Natures, Powers, Influences for their own, and the common Pres;ervation, and Benefit.

The [...] and Invari­able Course, and hath the same [...], Comforting, [...], and [...] In­fluences, 'tis not [...], nor its Virtues exhausted, nor [...] it over [...] from its pro­per Course. Psal 19.5

The Earth returns its delightful Look, and its [...] Virtues and by its [...] Growth [...] of Food for its [...]. Psal. 14.14.15.

The Sea returns the [...] ge­nerally speaking much [...] [...]o [...]fi [...]ed within its proper Limits by [...] ba [...]k of [...] us Waves, so that thô [...] they can not prevail thô they [...] pass over it. J [...]r. [...] 22. [...] GOD gives [...] and then they overflow all [...], and [...], with [...] Floods and [...].

[Page 13]The Air in which we Breath, and without which we can live but few Men [...] while Globe, [...] every where, and pertaining in a [...] salutary [...]

The Fire warms and [...] us with the same [...] and [...] Heat.

And the whole [...] and Frame of Na­ture, or the Works of GOD, utter his Kind, wise, and powerful [...] its appointed [...] return in a regular Course, [...], Sum­mer and Winter, [...],—and [...] us with the [...] Works of GOD [...] as they [...] the [...] to give the [...], to see, and [...] — And so [...] [...] that [...] not of the [...] pre­serve [...] Being, [...] and Activity every [...] with all Things [...] their support every Day; GOD's Care [...] to all the [...], not to all the [...] Indivi­duals or every Tribe, the [...], and [...] [Page 14] not excepted, Not a single Sparrow is forgotten before GOD. Luk. 12 6. And 'tis indeed surprising to follow the wise and kind Pro­vidence of GOD in providing not only for the laborious Be, and provident Ant: Prov. 6.8. and the Fowls at the Door, who are fed by Men; but the Fowls of the Air, whom no Man takes Care of, or provides for, nor do they lay up for themselves, yet GOD feeds them. Mat. 6 26. Behold the Fowls of the Air; which sow not. &c.

These Observations, thô too commonly passed over, without Noi [...]e, or Regard, are yet worthy of it. Reason and Scripture call upon us, wisely to observe, and to improve them, to the best and most excellent Pur­poses; viz. to encourage our Trust in GOD, and quicken our Obedience to Him, as well as to excite in us admiring and adoring Thoughts of Him; see, Psal. 36.6.7, 8. and 147.7, 8, 9 Mat. 6.25, 26 and Luk. 12 22, 23, One thing more I would here observe, that GOD makes use of these inferiour Creatures, in a way of Mercy, or Judgment to Mankind: He makes the Air, either healthful or contagi­ous — shuts up Heaven, so that there is no Rain; or unstops the Bottles of Heaven, and pours out Showers of Blessing, so that, &c. Joel 2.24. — or sends such sweeping Rains as [Page 15] leave no Food. — And when ever He pleases, draws up, and sends forth the Locust, the Con­ker worm, the Catterpillar & the Pa [...]mer worm, his great Army, which Man is unable to Resist. Joel 2 25. Health and Sickness, Plenty and Scarcity, the Success or Defeat of Armies, and Navies; and so the support and comfort of our Lives, and the fate of whole Kingdoms, and Nations may be greatly affected by such Things as these: by favourable, or frowning Seasons.

But thus much of the Providence of GOD, over the inanimate, and irrational Part of the Creation. 'Tis Time to proceed to the Con­sideration of GOD's Empire, and Dominion over Reasonable Creatures, as Men, and Angels.

As to GOD's Government of Angels, it is but little that We know, and I shall say less.

The Scriptures assure us that great Num­bers of these excellent Creatures, retaining their Integrity, continue holy and happy. These holy Angel, who excel in Strength, always chearfully do his Commandments; and not only stand, as his heavenly Courtiers, about his Throne; but are employ'd, as Ministers of his Providence, for his Peoples Good. Heb. 1.14. They incamp about GOD's faithful People while they live; Psal. 34.7. and stand ready to convoy their de­parting Spirits with Safety, and Honour to [Page 16] the [...] Mansions prepared for them, when they [...] Luk. 16 22 And in how many other Ways they Minister unto them, I am neither able exactly to explain, not may now stay to inquire.

But great Numbers of these, once glorious Spirits, revolving from their Duty and Ale­giance to GOD, are banished Heaven, and continue to [...] and Torment. Jude ver 6 These [...] in their Rebellion against GOD, and [...] attempting, and often permitted to do Hurt and Mis­chief to Men 1 Pet. 5.8. Yet they are a [...] GOD's Restraint. Rev. 20.1. and can't do the [...] Hurt, to the mannest Creature with [...] his Permission Mat. 8 31.

But 'tis [...] we should be a [...] more particular, in [...] GOD's Government of M [...]n; towards whom GOD has distinguish­ed his Goodness; not only in making him, at first, but [...] lower than the Angels — giving [...] an excellent and perfect Law, in all Things, holy, just, and good — Taking Man into Covenant with [...].—And after Man had ruined himself, by his Revolt from GOD — in opening a Way for our Reco­very from the Ruins of the Apostacy, by the Incarnation, Death, and Sufferings of his own Son; and the Influences of his Holy Spirit: — in setting up Churches and Ordinances for [Page 17] the spiritual, and civil Government, for the Temporal Good and Welfare of Men.

But further, as GOD had a special Regard to Man, in the Formation, Preservation, and Government of the inferiour Orders of Crea­tures; so his Providence watches over Man, and all his Affairs, and Concerns, with a very particular Care. How much is needful to one Man's Preservation, Support, and Comfort: And what Wisdom, Power; and Goodness must be employ'd, in upholding a whole World of Men; supplying them with Necessaries, Comforts and Delights of various Kinds; and that not for a Day, or Year, or one Age only; but thrô the several Ages and Generations of Men that have ex­isted, and been provided for, in these, almost Six Thousand Years, that the World has stood, and that notwithstanding, Ten Thousand Barrs and obstructions, that Men have been con­tinually laying in the way of their own Hap­piness, by their Sins, Follies, and Disorders.

We might here more particularly, thô it must be but briefly, Consider.

1. GOD's Providential Government over Men, as combined in civil Societies. Man­kind is made for Society, and stands in need of mutual Help. — Government is necessary to the Being, and Well-Being of Society. — There would probably have been some Sort [Page 18] of Government among Mankind, as there seems to be among the Holy Angels, had Man retain'd his Integrity. — 'Tis more ab­solutely necessary in this our fallen and depra­ved State, wherein Men's Lusts, and irregular, sinful Inclinations are become so impetuous, and headstrong, and bear such a dreadful Sway — The sence of GOD and Religion is so much effaced, and worn out of Men's Minds, and the State of future Rewards and Punish­ments (if not disbelieved) is by many, so little thôt of, or looked upon as so far off; that it has but a feeble Influence upon the Minds of most.— There needs some nearer, and more sensible Restraint, to curb Men's irregular and vicious Inclinations, and keep the World in any tolerable Peace and Order. — What an unsafe and uncomfortable Place would this World be, were Men left at their full, unre­strained Liberty, to do every One, what seems Right in his own Eyes, or rather what is most agreeable to his own irregular and sinful Inclinations? Men's Wills and Strength would be their Rule; many would be ready to snatch from others what they was able to get, and had a mind to have, and to crush or destroy those that would hinder or oppose them No Man's Life, Possessions or Com­forts would be safe; But Men like the Fishes of the Sea, that have no Ruler over them, [Page 19] would be preying upon, and devouring one another. Habb. 1. 14. GOD has therefore, in great Wisdom, and Mercy to Mankind, appointed civil Government, to be a Pro­tection, and Praise to them that do well, and a Terror to evil doers; that under its Sha­dow Men may find Rest and Safety, and lead quiet and peaceable Lives in all Godli­ness and Honesty.

The necessity of civil Government is evident from the very Nature and Reason of Things; and that it is of divine Institution and Ap­pointment appears as evident from Scripture, which teaches us also the End and Designs of it. See, Prov. 8 15, 16. By me Kings Reign, and Princes decree Justice, By me Princes Rule, and Nobles, even all the Judges of the Earth. Rom. 13. beg. Let every Soul be subject to the higher Powers. For there is no Power but of GOD: the Powers that be are ordained of GOD, &c. See also, I Tim. 2.1, 2.1 Pet. 2.13, 14. Civil Rulers derive their Authority from GOD, the supreme Ruler and Governor of the World; they rule under Him, and should rule for Him; and improve their Power and Autho­rity to those great and good Ends and Purposes for which He has appointed it.

And his all-disposing Providence presides over Kingdoms, Nations, and Governments. [Page 20] The most High GOD divideth to the several Nations their Inheritance. Deut. 32.8. And appointeth the Bounds of their Habitation. Acts 17.26. And when any People have, not only their Lot cast in a good Land; but a good form of Government set up among them, — well qualified Persons raised up, and vested with Authority,—good Laws and Rules found out, and established; the Agency and Influence of divine Providence is to be ac­knowleged, and the divine Goodness is to be Adored therein.

'Tis the great Ruler of the World, that sets up, and pulls down earthly Rulers as He pleases. Psal. 75.6, 7. For Promotion com­meth neither from the East, nor from the West, nor from the South: But GOD is the Judge; He putteth down one, and setteth up another. Dan. 4.17, 32. The most High GOD ruleth in the Kingdom of Men, and giveth it to whom­soever He will. He either raises up good Rulers, and sets them over a People in Mercy, as he raised up David his Servant, and set him over His People Israel; To feed them according to the integrity of his Heart; and guide them by the fulfillness of his Hands; Psal. 78.72. And He endured Solomon, his Son and Suc­cessor, with extraordinary Wisdom, and set him upon the Throne, Because the LORD [...] his People; 1 Kings 10 9.2 Cor. 2.11. [Page 21] Or, He sets bad and wicked Rulers over them as the just Punishment of their Sins. We read of GOD's giving a King in his Anger, Hos. 13.11. And of the Kings he had set over his People for their Sins, Neh. 9.37.

And then, GOD presi [...]es in the Counsels, Courts, and Assemblies of earthly Rulers, to observe, direct, and over-rule their Consultati­ons and Actions. Psal. 82 1. GOD standeth in the Congregation of the Mighty, He judgeth among the gods.— He either inlightens and directs them to make, and strengthens them to execute good, and wholesome Laws; and to guide the public Affairs with Discretion, or scatters Darkness in their Path, so that they can't find the Way themselves, nor lead their People in the Way of their Safety and Wel­fare. 'Tis He that inclines and enables Rulers, like good Nehemiah, to seek and pro­mote their Peoples Welfare. Neh. 2.10. And gives them Acceptance, as he did to Mordecai, when they are doing so. Esth. 10.3.

And all the Affairs of Kingdoms, and Nations are ordered, and determined by his Sovereign Providence. Job 12.23. He in­creaseth the Nations, and destroyeth them; He enlargeth the Nations, and straitneth them again.— He increaseth their Numbers, enlar­geth their Borders, Blesseth them with Health, Peace, Plenty, Prospers the Works of their [Page 22] Hands, and causes their Trade, Merchandize, and Husbandry to flourish; or straitens and distresses them with contrary Judgments. — He either gives the great Blessing of Peace, or sends the sore Judgment of War; — either suffers Enemies to rise up and prevail against a People, or makes their Enemies to be at Peace with them, — or gives Victory and Success, and subdues the People under them,—Favours them with the free Enjoyment of their civil and religious Liberties and Privi­leges, or causes them to groan under Oppres­sion, Tyranny, and Persecution,—directs and succeeds their Counsels, and Enterprizes, or infatuates their Counsels, blasts their Enter­prizes, and sends Cursing, Vexation, and Re­bukes on all they set their Hands unto. See this further Illustrated: Job 12.16,—25. and Psal. 107.33. But we proceed to say,

2. The Affairs of the Church are under the special Care, and Conduct of divine Providence.

GOD early set up a Church in the World, and has hitherto preserved it, and many ways expressed his special Care and Kindness to­wards it, from its earliest Infancy in the days of Adam, down to this very Day; and has assured us, that thrô his continued Care, The Gates of Hell shall not prevail against it. Mat. 16.18.

[Page 23]'Tis worthy of Observation, that as we can't worship GOD aright, any further than we know how it is his Will and Pleasure to be Worshipped; so (besides what may be learned from the dim beclouded Light of natural Reason) GOD has all along favoured his Church with the Light of divine Revela­tion; for many Ages of the World, by Pro­phets immediately Inspired, or Messages from Heaven by holy Angels; and these Revela­tions communicated by Oral Tradition. But it has pleased GOD long since, to com­mit his Will to Writing in the holy Scripture, that sure Word of Prophecy, which was given by divine Inspiration, and contains all we need to know, or practice, in order to GOD's Acceptance, and our own Salvation. 1 Tim. 3.6. To these sacred Writings, GOD has given the strongest Attestation, and by his special Providence has preserved them to this Day.—GOD's public Worship was early set up in the World, and Men began in solemn Assemblies to Call upon the Name of the Lord. Gen. 4.26.

When the sence of Religion, and Virtue was so far lost in the World, and Mankind was grown so very corrupt and degenerate that GOD determined to destroy that wicked Generation of Men from the face of the Earth by a remarkable Vengeance: He preserved [Page 24] Noah, a Preacher of Righteousness with his Family. And when alter this, the World was running fast into Idolatry; and GOD in his holy Providence, suffered other Nations to walk in their own ways, Acts 14.16. GOD called Abraham, taught him the true Know­lege, and Worship of GOD, and preserved it among his Posterity: And thô even they were so much addicted to Idolatry and Wickedness, that the true Religion seemed sometimes to be almost lost among them, yet in the worst of Times, GOD preserved a Number of true, and faithful Worshippers. 1 Kings 19.14.18. And thô for their Sins, GOD often raised up Enemies against them, and chastized with a variety of other Judgments, and at length sent them into a miserable Captivity; yet He again returned them to their own Land, and that in so remarkable a Way that his Hand appeared visible in it: When their Enemies had, at one Time and another, plot­ted, attempted, and seemed almost to have affected their Ruin, He always, seasonably interposed for their Help: See Book of Esth. And at length, when the fulness of Time was come, GOD sent his own Son to atone for Men's Sins, by his Sufferings, and Death; to give the World a perfect Pattern and Example of Holiness; and to set up that pure and spiritual Dispensation, which is to [Page 25] continue to the end of the World; and so soon did He spread this holy Religion abroad, that the Apostle Paul applies what the Psalmist spake of the Sun in the Heavens, to the dis­fusive Light of the Gospel, even at that Day. Rom. 10.18. And having set up the Christian Church, He has still upheld it, against all the Power and Policy of Hell and Earth — carried it thrô a Sea of Blood, in Ten Heathenish, and a greater Number of Popish Persecutions, — has reformed a considerable Part of it from the gross Errors, Superstitions, and Idolatries of Popery,— and has always had a Number of faithful Witnesses, to profess, and bear Tes­timony to the Truth, against the Corruptions of Antichrist, — has often revived Religion when decay'd and languishing, and always had a Church in the World, wherein Christ has Reigned even in the midst of Enemies, — who thô they have often afflicted, yet have never been able to destroy it. See Psal. 129. and 124.

But I may not enlarge on this delightful Theme of GOD's Care over his Church:

But proceed to say, that as GOD's Provi­dence presides over Mankind in General, and governs the larger Bodies, and Societies of Men. So,

3. The same good Providence presides over particular Persons, and orders all their [Page 26] Affairs and Concerns. Psal. 33 13, 14, 15. The LORD looketh from Heaven: He behold­eth all the Sons of Men: From the Place of his Habitation he looketh upon all the Inhabi­tants of the Earth. He [...] their Hearts alike: He considereth all their Works. All Mankind, both Good and Bad, and all their Concerns and Circumstances personal and re­lative, are alike under his View, and subject to his providential Government and Disposal. Every particular Person, yea every Creature, and all their Actions, and all Events that be [...]al them are over ruled by GOD.

There is nothing so great, as to be above his Power; For the LORD is high above all gods: and wherein they deal [...], He is above them, Exod. 18 11. Those that walk in Pride, He is able to [...]. Dan. 4.37. Nor is there any Thing [...] to be below his Notice and [...]He [...] the Grass of the Field. Mat. 6 30. and [...] of the Air, ver 26. Not a Sparrow, nor an Hair of our Head falls to the Ground without his Notice and Direction. Mat. 10.29. — The most [...] Creatures are under his Controul. Psal. 65.7. He [...] the Noise of the Seas, the Noise of their Waves, and the Tumult of the People, and 89 9. And those things that seem most Accidental, are under his Direction. Prov. 16.33. The Lot [Page 27] is cast into the Lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD. And by small, and seemingly accidental Things; great Events are often brought to pass, and a Turn given to the most important Affairs, quite different from Men's Projections, Prospects, and Ex­pectations. Eccl. 9 11. The Race is not to the Swi [...]t, nor the Battle to the strong, &c. And even Men's Free and Voluntary Actions are subject to GOD's Influence, Government and Controul. Prov. 21.1. The Kings Heart is in the Hand of the LORD; as the Rivers of Water He turneth it whithersoever He will. Prov. 16.9. A Man's Heart deviseth his Way; but the LORD directeth his Steps. So that Prov. 19.21. either by a secret Touch upon Men's Hearts, as 1 Sam 10.26. or by some external Motives or Inducements, GOD can (and no doubt) often does, give a Turn to Men's Thoughts, Purposes, and Actions quite different from their standing Temper, Purposes, and Inclinations, so that, Jer. 10.23. Prov. 20 24. Instances of this may be seen in Laban, Gen. 31. Esau, Gen. 33. and Saul 1 Sam 24. &c. To good and holy Actions GOD excites and influences by his special Grace. Phil. 2.13. Job 15.5. And Men's Evil and Wicked Actions, He not only, always sorbids, and often restrains and prevents; but is pleased also, for wise and [Page 28] holy Ends and Reasons, often to permit; and when He does so, to over-rule to Good in the Event and Effect; See Acts. 2.23. and 4.28. In all these Things GOD acts, in a Manner becoming Himself, how far so­ever it is above our Thoughts and Concep­tions: So as, neither to be the Author of Sin, nor an unactive, unconcerned Spectator: But the holy, wise, powerful Orderer, and Disposer of all Things. In brief, GOD is infinitely Holy, and hates Sin; infinitely Pow­erful, and could prevent Sin; and therefore would never permit Sin, were He not also, infinitely Wise, to bring Good out of Evil; as He did, in the Case of Joseph's Brethren, Gen. 50.20. And above all, in the Instance of the Betrayers, and Crucifiers of our Blessed Saviour, out of which He has brought the highest Glory to GOD, and Good to Men.

Thus we have seen this great Truth, very imperfectly Illustrated, and Confirmed. Let us fix it in our Minds, and may it duly in­fluence our Lives.— And whatever Mysteries there may be in the Book of Providence. Rom. 11.33. O the Depth of the Riches both of the Wisdom and Knowlege of GOD! how unsearchable are his Judgements, and his Ways past finding out! Yet all must certainly be Well and Wisely done, that infinite Wisdom and Goodness does. When Clouds and [Page 29] Darkness are round about him: Righteousness and Judgment are the Habitation of his Throne. Psal. 97.2. The LORD, is certainly Righte­ous in all his Ways, and Holy in all his Works, Psal. 145 17 Yea, All the Paths of the Lord are Mercy and Truth. unto such as keep his Co­venant and his Testimonies, Psal. 25.10. And He makes every Thing Beautiful in his Time, Eccl. 3.11. Our Thoughts and Views are very narrow and contracted: We see but little of GOD's Work, and know but little of his Designs: Could we see the whole Plan and Scope in one View, and how every Part conspires to further the Great Design; we should no doubt, see great Reason to unite our Hearts and Voices in that Song, Rev. 15.3, 4. Great and Marvellous are thy Works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy Ways, thou King of Saints. Who shall not, &c.

What has been said might afford a large and profitable application in many Useful and Instructive Instances. As

Hence, How Glorious and Adorable is the LORD JEHOVAH, the Supreme LORD. and Sovereign of the World; the Great KING of Heaven and Earth.—How Faulty are they, who over-look the Providence of GOD, and ascribe all the Good they enjoy to themselves, as Deut. 8.17. and all Evils to Chance, as 1 Sam. 6, 9. or to Instruments and second [Page 30] Causes only.— How Thankful should we be to GOD, from whom comes every Good and Perfect Gift. Jam. 1.17.—And how resigned, patient, submissive under all Affections he is pleased to lay upon us.— How well contented with that Concition his Wisdom and Good­ness order out to us. — How Reasonable are the Duties of Prayer to GOD, Trust in GOD, and Care to please Him?— How much does it Concern us all to have GOD, our Friend, and to commit Ourselves, and all our Concerns to Him?— and what Support must this afford the Godly under the darkest Pros­pects, and heaviest Affections? — and what Encouragement, chearfully to follow his Gui­dance, and serve his Providence in the Use of Means, and in the Stations He assigns us, having our Hearts always possessed with a Holy Fear and Reverence of Him, Trust in Him, and Devotedness to Him? But this Public Occasion may rather lead us, By Way of

IMPROVEMENT, to Consider,

I. To whom we are Indebted for the many distinguishing Favours, our Nation and Land have been, and are yet Indulged with.

Great Britain is highly Favoured, not only in the Commodiousness of its Situation, the Fruitfulness of its Soil, and the Happy [Page 31] Constitution of its Civil Government: — But it was early inlightned with the Gospel, and perhaps, longer preserved from some of the gross Corruptions of Popery, than many other Nations. — The Light of the Reformation began early to dawn there, in the Preaching and Writings of Whicklif, and his Followers and shone more and more, 'till the Popish Yoke was pretty early cast off: And thô there was a short Interruption, in the dark and bloody Days of Q. Mary, and have been some bold and threatning Attempts since, to bring back Popery; yet the reformed Re­ligion (thô not carried to that Perfection that is to be desired, thrô divine Favour, is still continued, together with civil and religious Liberty,—and many, and very remarkable have been the Interpositions of divine Pro­vidence, to preserve these invaluable Blessings. As, in Defeating the formidable intended Spanish Invasion: In Discovering the hellish Powder-Plot; And in bringing, first King WILLIAM, and then King GEORGE I. to the British Throne, to defend our holy Religion, and civil Liberties, against the infatuated Counsels, and bold Attempts, of those, who seemed fond and zealous to Exchange these invaluable Blessings, for the dreadful Curse of Popery, and arbitrary Power,—and in blasting the secret Plots and Conspiracies that have [Page 32] been formed, and open Rebellions that have been raised at Home; and Invasions inten­ded, or attempted from Abroad; and con­tinuing the Protestant Religion, and the Pro­testant Succession to this Day, in despite of our Enemies, at home, and abroad, who have all-along been plotting and contriving, and often attempting; but never have been suf­ferred to effect our Ruin, by all their restless Malice, and notwithstanding our great Sins and Provocations.

And we of this Land, and particularly of this Colony, not only share in these Blessings, in common with our Fellow-Subjects; but have some distinguishing Privileges granted to us by Royal Charter, in Consideration of the great Cost and Labour expended, and Service done to the Crown and Nation, in Su [...]duing and Setting this Land; and thereby inlarging the British Trade and Dominions.

And how many distinguishing Favours of Providence have we to be Thankful to GOD for? (too many to be now Enumerated) in directing our Fathers to this Good Land,—carrying them thrô the almost inconceivable Hardships and Difficulties of their Infant State and first Beginnings, in a remote inhospitable Wilderness, far Distant from their Christian Friends, as well as from needed Supports and Supplies,— and in the midst of numerous, [Page 33] barbarous, savage Heathen, who soon became their Enemies, — in driving out the Heathen, and subduing the Wilderness before them,—defending them against their Enemies,— in­creasing their Numbers — inlarging their Bor­ders — blessing and prospering their Labours — establishing a good Civil Government among them — raising up wise and good Rulers to lead them—setting up, and upholding Pure Evangelical Churches, freer from humane In­ventions than most in the World, and by his Blessing upon our Colleges and Means of Education, raising up a Succession of Able Faithful Pastors to Feed them with Know­lege and Understanding, and giving so much of his gracious Presence with them, and in his Churches especially in the Days of our Fathers▪ and often reviving Religion when under Decays and Languishments; as well as in many signal Appearances of his Pro­vidence, both in our Days, and in the Days of our Fathers; among which the Series of Providences in the Reduction of Cape Br [...]ton, and the Defeating and Destroying the [...] Fleet ought never to be forgotten. These are the LORD's Doings, and they should be Mar­vellous in our Eyes. We may say, as Psal. 44. [...]eg.

II. Hence it becomes us to consider, what Returns we have made to God for these Great [Page 34] and Distinguishing Favours. Our Saviour has told us, Luk 12 48. That unto whomsoever Much is given, of him shall be Much required. And common Reason tells us that such Ex­pectations are Just, and agreeable to the Sence of Mankind, as the following Words intimate: For unto whom Men have committed Much, of him they will ask the More. What then does GOD justly expect from us? for whom He has done so much? You may see, 1 Sam. 12.24. Only fear the LORD, and serve Him in Truth, and with a perfect Heart: for consider how great Things He has done for you. What People upon Earth have been under greater Advantages and Obliga­tions to Fear GOD and Serve Him; to be a Virtuous, Religious, and Holy People, than we have been? But does our Character and Carriage answer our Obligations?

We make a Profession, and have the Ap­pearance of Religion among us; and there are, I Trust, no small Number of truly Godly and Religious People in the Land; and I suppose, the People of this Land, and of this Colony, are not in general, sunk into so great a Depth of Prophaneness, Vice, and Wicked­ness, as some other Parts of the World. But are we not far degenerated from the Virtue and Piety of our Ancestors? Where is that strict, serious Virtue and Religion that Once [Page 35] prevailed? That Industry and Diligence, that Sobriety and Temperance, that Honesty and Peaceableness, that Humility and Heavenly­mindedness, that ardent Affection to the House, the Ways, the Ordinances, the Mini­sters of GOD, that Subjection and Deference to Magistrates and Superiors, that Regularity and Good Order in Families and larger So­cieties, that Love to GOD and Love to Man, that lively thorough Practice of Religion and Virtue, and Fortitude and Firmness of Mind in adhering to it? Are they not much abated?

And as there is a sad Decay and Decline in these excellent Things; so on the other Hand, are not those Sins and Vices grown much more common and frequent, that were seldom known among the first Settlers of this Land? It was a very honourable Tes­timony that was given by One that had lived Seven Years in this Country:‘That he never saw a Beggar, nor a Man overcome with strong Drink, nor did he ever hear a prophane Oath among them’ But are not these and many other Vices now become too, too common? Are not Pride, Idleness, Intemperance, Uncleanness, Injustice, Strife and Contention, Falshood and Evil Speaking, Disrespect to Parents and Civil Rulers, the Profanation of GOD's Name and Day, and neglect and Contempt of his Public Worship [Page 36] Ministry and Ordinances, yea a vile Contempt of CHRIST, his Laws and Grace, and all the Blessings of the Gospel become common, growing and prevailing Sins? May not GOD complain of us, that we have left our first Love? that Iniquity abounds, and tha Love of many waxes Cold: that as our Numbers, and Worldly Comforts and Accommodations have Increased, so have our Sins, — that we are grown more corrupt in our Principles: more loose and irreligious, profane and vici­ous in our Practice; and that the Things that remain are Languishing and ready to Die? Have we not lost much of the Form, and more of the Power of Godliness? Is not a thorough, humble, steady, exemplary Chris­tian become somewhat [...] among Professors? Is there not a great Languor prevailing a­mong Christians in general, or where there appears a Fervour and Warmth, does it not too often run out into barren wrangling Con­troversie, or irregular Heats and Transports of misguided Zeal, to the hurt and wounding of Religion: while many make little Preten­sions to Religion, and give a loose to their Victous Inclinations. Have we not Cause to be Humbled and Mourn? and has not GOD Cause to Complain of [...]s for these Things, as Deut. 32.6. Days that require the LORD: &c. Isa. 1.2, 3.

[Page 37] III. May we not then here see the Rea­son of the increasing Frowns and Rebukes we are and have been under? GOD's Rule of Dealing with People and Nations we have Jer. 18.9.10. And have not his Dealings with us been agreeable to it?

Our Fathers no Doubt, had their Failings and Imperfections; and they had likewise their Troubles and Tryals: But as we have been gradually declining from GOD, have not his Frowns, and our Troubles been increasing in a variety of Judgments? as Wars, Sickness, Droughts, and Difficulties in our Civil and Religious Affairs. Indeed GOD has in Judg­ment remembred Mercy, and seemed loth to proceed to Extremity; as Psal. 78.38. But He bring full of Compassion, forgave their Iniquity, and Destroyed them not; yea, many a Time turned He away his Anger, and did not stir up all his Wrath. But have we not continued, to a sad Degree impenitent and unreformed, under Mercies and Judgments; yea, been waxing worse and worse under both?

And as our Sins, so his righteous Frowns seem to be increasing upon us: 'Tis now a dark Day. The aspects of Providence ap­pear very frowning and threatening: We are deeply involved in the Troubles and Calami­ties of War: And thô our Rulers and Peo­ple have shown a forward Spirit to engage [Page 38] and exert themselves, to their Power; yea, may I not say, beyond their Power, for our necessary Defence, and for repelling the inju­rious Force and Violence of our Enemies: Yet it has not pleased GOD to smile, but frown upon most of our Enterprizes. Our Enemies have been sufferred to gain great Advantages against us, which I need not, and delight not to relate; while our Expeditions against them (in which great Numbers of Lives have been lost, and considerable Part of our moderate Treasure or Substance has been spent) have Once and Again proved unsuccessful: And when our Numbers are lessened, and considerable of our small Trea­sure spent, the Burden of War lies still heavy upon a Young & Infant Country, whose Sinews are but feeble to sustain it; our Experience in Campaigns but small; and our Minds, I fear, not suitably affected,— more disposed to complain of Men, than to humble ourselves before GOD, and to Trust in an Arm of Flesh, than to seek and engage his Almighty Help. These are dark Symptoms, and sore Frowns upon us, and in what they are to Issue GOD only knows.

IV. It therefore becomes and concerns us to see, and suitably to take Notice of the Hand and Providence of GOD, in all the Troubles and Calamities we are under. 'Tis [Page 39] but too common, and too natural to us to fix our Eyes so much upon Means and In­struments, and second Causes, as to forget and overlook the great First Cause, and Su­preme Orderer of all Things, and hence to be either Unaffected, or unsuitably Affected. But does not GOD govern the World? Is there any Evil in the City, and the LORD hath not done it, Amos 3.6. Who gave Jacob to a Spoil, and Israel to the Robbers? did not the LORD, He against whom we have Sinned? for they would not walk in his Ways, neither were they obedient to his Law, Isa. 42.24. And should not his Hand be taken Notice of? — We have Cause more than enough to complain of the Injuriousness of our Enemies, — and we have great Reason to lament the Unsuccessfulness of our Friends, — But we have, at the same Time, no less Reason to humble ourselves under the righteous Hand of GOD in both: And 'till we get into this Way, to look at the Hand of GOD, and look into our­selves, and to humble ourselves, for our Sins, and under his Frowns, and pray, and seek his Face, and turn from our evil Ways, we have little Reason to expect the Re­moval of our Troubles. See Isa. 9. ver. 11, 12, 13.

Wherefore,

[Page 40] V. This shows us, and should excite us all to take the true and only Way of our Safety, Welfare, and Happiness. Men are wont to be very sensible of what Impor­tance it is to have the Favour of Earthly Rulers; is infinitely more concerns us to obtain Favour in the Eyes of the Supreme Ruler of Heaven and [...]. Prov. 29.26. Many [...] Rulers Favour, but every Man's [...] from the LORD. Our [...] up in his Favour; and it [...] us all, Rulers, Mini­sters, a People to unite in seeking this, and getting into the Way to enjoy it. Let us all do to.

And Here, I shall take the unexpected Occasion, with all due Deference, to Address myself

I. To our Honoured Rulers; particularly, To the Honourable the GOVERNOR in Chief, the DEPUTY-GOVERNOR, the ASSISTANTS, and the REPRESENTATIVES of the Freeman of this Colony. And say, That as GOD, the Supreme Ruler of the World has put some Image of his Authority upon you in the Offices you sustain; so He justly expects and requires that You improve the Au­thority and Influence He has given You for Him; in promoting his Honour, and his Peoples Good.

[Page 41]It becomes us to accept always, with all Thankfulness, the many worthy Deeds that have been done by our Honoured Rulers, in making Good and Wholesome Laws, and in the Provision made for the just Execu­tion of them; In the pious Proclamations issued forth from Time to Time, for Days of public Fasting, and Thanksgiving, exhorting us to return to GOD, and to give Him the Glory of his Mercies: In their Care for our Safety and Protection; and frequent Consul­tations for our Good and Welfare: But does there need yet more to be done by all Ranks and Orders of Men among us. to make us a virtuous, religious, and hap­py People? Our Regeneracies, and with them GOD's Frowns upon [...]s have been increasing, notwithstanding all that GOD and Man have [...] to Reform us. This calls loudly upon all to do their utmost, to put a Stop to the Course of GOD's Anger, and to recover his Favour—And with You — Our Honoured Fathers, lead the Way, and set us an Ex­ample? The Godly Rulers in Israel, much furthered the Peoples Reformation and Hap­piness, — GOD has put Honour upon You, and Power and Authority into your Hands, and there with superior Advantages and Obligations to promote Religion and Virtue, and thereby our best Good; and you can't [Page 42] better improve them, than to these Ends.—You will therefore hold yourselves obliged, not only equally with others, but above most others, to Honour GOD by a hearty Sub­mission to his Grace and Government, and to Recommend Religion by your pious Examples, and not only Discountenance Vice, and Recommend Religion and Virtue by your Practice; but by Executing the good and wholsome Laws against Vice, Profane­ness and Immorality; and if you find it needful, by adding further Laws, or In­forcements to those in Being for the Sup­pression of Vice, and the Support, Coun­tenance, and Encouragement of Religion and Virtue, and the Securing the Honour of GOD's Laws and Government.

You will give all due Countenance, Sup­port and Encouragement, to a learned, able, faithful Ministry, who labour under some Discouragements at this Day: You will there­fore think it incumbent on you to encourage their Hearts, and strengthen their Hands in the LORD's Work. And to give all proper and needful Support and Encouragement to the College, which has been so great an Ho­nour and Blessing to the Land, and has not only Supplied our Churches with a learned Ministry; but furnished many accomplished Persons for superiour Usefulness in civil Life.

[Page 43]GOD has made it a Part, and not the least important Part of the honourable Work and Office of civil Rulers to be Nursing Fathers to his Church. Isai. 49 23 And Religion is not a vain Thing, for it is our Life Deut. 32.47 You will not therefore think it, and what tends to uphold and promote it, unworthy of your highest Regard both as Men, and as Rulers.

And next, the Dangers and Burdens of the War, will engage your Attention, to provide for our common Safety by Methods the most effectual, and at the same Time, the most easy to the People your best Wis­dom can contrive. War unavoidably brings the Burden of heavy Taxes as well as many other Calamities with it. You will make these Burdens as light as our common Safety will allow

The most equal and impartial Admini­stration of Justice, in Methods as easie, and as little expensive as may be. — The securing our Rights and Privileges Civil and Religious. — The encouragement of Industry — and promoting all our Interests, you will always think worthy to employ your Superiour Wisdom and Abilities, and most Engaged Attention, that you may approved yourselves Ministers of GOD to us for Good. By what Methods these Things [Page 44] are to be best Effected, and what are the particular Tempers and Distempers of this People, You who live in all Parts of the Colony, and are acquainted with the Mys­teries of State and Government, are much better able to Judge that I. May GOD give you that tender Concern for the Good of your People, and that great Degree of Wisdom and Direction, that the uncommon Difficulties of this Day call for.—And may you have the great Honour to be instrumental in Recovering us from our Declensions, — To Conduct our public Affairs with all that Wisdom, Skill, and Integrity that is needful, while our Difficulties continue,—and under the Conduct of GOD's all-wise and all-disposing Providence, to lead us happily out of them. Then will you not Repent of the many anxious Cares you employ for us, and the Weight and Difficulties of our public Affairs cost you. May GOD direct, [...], and sup­port you under them — and [...] your Administration to these Ends.

2. The common Usage leads, and there­fore my Reverend Fathers and Brethren in the Ministry will allow one who very sen­sibly [...] Direction and Instruction from those, much more than he is able to give it to them. Briefly to suggest; That as [...] has pleased GOD to put us into the [Page 45] Ministry, so He has made it our Duty, and it will be our Honour, Comfort and Happiness, to be Fellow-workers to the Kingdom of GOD, Col. 4.11. 'Tis our Business to pull down the Kingdom of Satan, and to build up the spiritual King­dom of GOD, of our LORD JESUS CHRIST, who is True GOD; to give Him the Throne in our Hearts, and while diligently working out our own Salvation, to endea­vour to our utmost to promote the Salva­tion of others, by perswading them to re­nounce those other lords that have had Dominion over them, and compelling them to come in and submit to CHRIST our SAVIOUR and LORD, and take his Yoke upon their Necks, and by an unseigned Subjection to his Grace and Government—a diligent Attendance upon his Ordinances—a careful Obedience to his Laws, and Imi­tation of his Example, to approve themselves his faithful loyal Subjects. This will make them better Subjects to our civil Rulers, more useful Members of Society, and greater Blessings in every Relation, and it will be the best Method that can be taken, to open the Way to their and our Enjoy­ment of Peace, Prosperity, Protection and all other needful Blessings here, and eternal Blessedness hereafter.

[Page 46]This benevolent Design is worthy to employ all our Labours, Studies, Prayers, no Pains is too much, if this may, by the Blessing of GOD, be effected.

The growing Degeneracy of the Times we live in, increases the Difficulty and Bur­den of our Work, and that, together with the Frowns of GOD we are under, calls loudly upon us to spare no Pains to a­waken Men to a sence of their Sins, their Danger, and their Duty, and to reclaim them from [...] Errors of their Ways, to the Wisdom of the Just.

Our Work is Great, as well as Good: We need each others Help and Assistance in it, as well as all of us continual Help and Assistance from GOD; it therefore be­comes us to be Fellow Workers herein, and by our mutual Affection, Prayers, Coun­sels and Assistance to encourage each others Hearts, and strengthen each others Hands, and further each others Usefulness and Comfort as much as we are able; striving together for the Faith of the Gospel, and to promote the Prac­tice of that pure and holy Religion CHRIST has taught us in his Word, and recommended by his Practice. — And the Distresses of the Day call upon us who are Ministers of the LORD to be much in our Prayers and Cries to GOD, that He would spare and bless his People, as Joel 2.17.

[Page 47]3. To this whole Assembly, or People in General. Let every one renounce the Tyranny of Sin and Satan, and subject themselves to the righteous and gracious Government of GOD in CHRIST. — His Throne is in the Heavens, and his King­dom rules over the whole World. — But He has set up his Spiritual Kingdom among us, and it will be our Wisdom, and Safety, and Happiness to submit to it, and be­come the willing loyal Subjects of it,—'till we do so, we are exposed not only to GOD's heavy Judgments in the World, but to his eternal Wrath in the World to come — Our revolt from GOD is the source of all our Miseries, — our return to Him is ne­cessary to our Welfare and Happiness here, as well as hereafter, see Isa. 48 18. Ezek. 18.30.

And in Duty and Obedience to GOD, let us all yield due Subjection, Respect and Obe­dience to Those He has set over us, — Praying for them, 1 Tit. 2.1, 2. Yielding Obedience to them, Tit. 3 1. Chearfully paying the Tribute and Taxes due to the public Support, Rom. 7.13. and not increa­sing their Burdens, which are themselves heavy, by groundless Jealousies, Complaints, or Censures of their Administrations, Designs, or Actions when not well understood, or [Page 48] perhaps much Mistaken. This the Difficul­ties of our Affairs may prove a Tempta­tion to; we should therefore guard the more carefully against it. Remember that Perfec­tion is not to be expected in Man. That there may Difficulties arise which humane Wisdom can neither fore-see and obviate, nor humane Power prevent. It becomes us rather to eye the Hand of GOD in the Difficulties we are under, to humble our­selves before Him, to see and realize our Dependance on Him, and to seek to Him, and wait on Him for Help and Deliverance, and to strengthen the Hands of our Rulers when seeking our Good.

These Things, the Frowns of GOD we are under — the threating Danger we are in — the dark Cloud that gathers over us (and not over us only, but over the whole Re­formed Interest) loudly call us to.

There is yet Hope in GOD, He is able to Help: And if we return to, and seek, and trust in Him, there is Hope he will.

'Tis a great Work that is now in the Hands of our Rulers, our Officers, and Sol­diers, the Defence of our Lives, our Li­berties and Properties, our Holy Religion.—All that is dear to us in this World seems evidently to be struck at, and threatned, by the Designs and Attempts of our ancient, [Page 49] active, inveterate, and alass! now too success­ful Enemies, who have long been projecting to bring North-America under their Power, and against whom we are never safe, when 'tis in their Power to Hurt and Destroy us, our intire Dependence is on GOD for Success against them.—But what have we done more than formerly, to engage his Presence, Help and Blessing? Let us see our Danger, our Duty and our Dependence upon GOD, let us humble ourselves before Him, for our Sins, and under his Frowns, carefully and speedily reform whatever is amiss, every One, First in Him­self or in his Family; and every One in his Place and Station, endeavour to further a ge­neral Reformation, and all unite in our Pray­ers and Cries to GOD for his Help and Bles­sing: This has been tried, and not found in vain. ver. 4, 5. Context, Our Fathers trusted in Thee: They trusted, and Thou [...] deliver them. They cried unto Thee and were deli­vered: They trusted in Thee, and were not con­founded.

Then may GOD's supreme and universal Empire and Dominion afford Support and Comfort and Encouragement to us, under the darkest Prospects that are or can be be­fore us.

[Page 50]There is Help in GOD, and when his People are prepared, and in his appointed Way waiting for it, he is ready to bestow it.

'Tis an encouraging Consideration that our Enemies are also his — either Heathen Idolaters, or Idolatrous Christians, in whose Skirts is found the Blood of GOD's Saints and Servants.

And is it not a further Token for Good, that GOD has given us such Favour in the Eyes of our Royal Father the KING, and of the Nation, and given them such a Sence of our Danger, and Concern for our Safety and Welfare, as to send, not only considerable Supplies of Men and Money, and Military Stores, as well as Naval Force; but One of the NOBLES of the Land, of tried and approved Skill and Valour, as well as of unshaken Loy­alty, and firm Attachment to the British Liberties civil and religious, to conduct our Military Affairs. May GOD make him a happy Instrument of our Protection and Safety.

Let us be Thankful to GOD for these Smiles of his Providence. But let us not trust in an Arm of Flesh, but in the LORD of Hosts, and may He be our Protection and Defence, and give us Cause to Sing, [Page 51] as Psal. 3.8. Salvation belongeth to the LORD: His Blessing is upon his People. May his spiri­tual Kingdom spread over the whole Earth, be continued, advanced, and flourish in this Land, and may have here, A Seed to serve Him, which shall be counted to Him for a Generation, who shall come, and shall declare his Righteousness unto a People that shall be Born, That He hath done This. AMEN.

FINIS.

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