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Mr. Clarke's ARTILLERY-ELECTION SERMON.

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The Importance of military Skill, Measures for Defence and a martial Spirit, in a Time of Peace. A SERMON PREACHED TO THE ANCIENT AND HONORABLE ARTILLERY COMPANY IN BOSTON, NEW-ENGLAND, JUNE 6. 1768. BEING THE ANNIVERSARY OF THEIR ELECTION OF OFFICERS.

BY JONAS CLARKE, A. M. Pastor of the Church in LEXINGTON.

BOSTON; NEW-ENGLAND: Printed by KNEELAND and ADAMS, and Sold by NICHOLAS BOWES, opposite to the Brick Meeting-House in Corn-hill. MDCCLXVIII.

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AN ARTILLERY-ELECTION SERMON.

2 Chron. xvii.16.

And next him was Amasiah the son of Zichri, who willingly offered himself unto the LORD, and with him two hundred thou­sand mighty men of valour.

THAT GOD, the source of being and perfection, who created all things for himself, exercises a wise, a just, an universal government and providence over all his crea­tures and all his works, is a truth too evident, from the light of nature, to be dis­puted, too clearly revealed, explained and in­forced▪ in the sacred oracles, to need any proof.

THAT this world and all that is in it, are un­der his direction and government,—that man­kind have been his peculiar care, the experience of all preceeding ages abundantly proves.

[Page 6]TO lead mankind to see the justice and equity of divine government, to give a general idea of the course of divine providence, towards states and kingdoms, as well as individuals, is evident­ly one important end of all history, whether sa­cred or profane. And as the divine conduct has been generally the same, to people of the same temper and character, in all past ages of the world, facts and events, truly recorded and faith­fully preserved in history, are of no small advan­tage to succeeding generations.—They happily point out the errors into which some have run, and the rocks upon which they have been ship­wreck'd,—they clearly exhibit the measures by which others have rose to a state of glory and happiness, scarcely to be conceived of, in a state of imperfection; and so give the wisdom and experience of ages past, for the direction and improvement of those that succeed.

AMONG the various histories with which the world has been favoured, as none is of earlier date, none is furnished with events, or examples, more interesting, entertaining, or useful, than the Scriptures of Truth. — Here we have a most simple, familiar, and (yet) striking representation of the conduct of the supreme ruler of the world, towards his saints and servants—towards his chosen people and their immediate enemies, and towards the world of mankind.—Here we have (as far as is necessary for us to know) the grounds and reasons of the divine conduct, to­wards nations and kingdoms, and individuals, together with the ends proposed by providence therein. And there is scarcely any thing men­tion'd [Page 7] in sacred history, but what is of public use, or private instruction—adapted to counte­nance and encourage vertue, in the good, or re­prove and discountenance vice, in the abandon'd and profane.

THE part of sacred writ, which has now been read, with the passage of history with which it is connected, presents us with a scene of measures, truly worthy the character of those that pursued them, and suited, at once, to engage the atten­tion, excite the admiration and encourage the emulation of persons of the same character and stations in life.

THE passage gives account of Jehoshaphat's accession to the throne of Judah, and of the measures taken, by him and his loyal people, to strengthen him against his enemies, to confirm him in his kingdom, and to render his reign easy to himself and happy to his people.

THE latter part of the preceeding reign, had been clouded with several instances of weak and bad policy, quite unworthy a king, whose gene­ral character had been really great and good:— By reason of which, the kingdom was left in a state, somewhat broken and perplex'd.—No sooner was Jehoshaphat seated on the throne, but his care was to set things right in the kingdom, and put the state into a posture of defence.—He placed forces in all the fenced cities of Judah, and set garrisons in the land of Judah, and in the cities of Ephraim. *

[Page 8]THE method this wise king took to ensure success to his measures, to lay a solid foundation for a prosperous, an happy reign, was greatly to his honour; worthy the wisdom of a king, and is mentioned, and left, in sacred story, for an ex­ample to others.—He began his reign with GOD, and early made religion his care.—He walked in the first ways of his father David, and sought not unto Baalim: But sought to the LORD GOD of his father, and walked in his command­ments. *—In this, his pious care was not confined to himself alone,—his people quickly feel the happy influence hereof, and largely share with him, in the benefits resulting from so wise a step.—Yea, the heart of this pious king was so encouraged, so lifted up in the ways of the LORD, that he took speedy and effectual care, to restore the true worship of GOD to it's pri­stine state, and have his people taught the law of the LORD, in it's native purity and simpli­city:—To the end, that, with him, they might taste the sweets of vertue, and know that GOD is good.

THAT GOD, by whom kings reign and princes decree justice, quickly observes his conduct, ap­proves his steps, rewards his pious care, and e­stablishes him in the kingdom. And, as an happy consequence hereof, this excellent king is greatly beloved and rever'd by his subjects at home.—As an expression of their loyalty and love, it is observed, that all Judah brought pre­sents to Jehoshaphat. By the same wise measures, the kingdom is rendred respectable abroad, and [Page 9] a terror to it's enemies.—They are now glad to appear as tributaries to Judah, and making rich presents to Jehoshaphat, to accept the terms of peace, at his hands. For the fear of the LORD fell upon all the kingdoms of the lands that were round about Judah, so that they made no war a­gainst Jehoshaphat. *

BUT, not enough that tranquility was restored and the kingdom in a respectable state, this pru­dent king and this loyal people are for improv­ing the happy opportunity of peace and rest, more effectually to provide for every event.

THE king, as he waxes great, continues to improve and provide for the safety, support and defence of his people.—He built castles in Judah and cities of stone; and wisely encouraged a martial spirit, and expertness in the knowledge and use of arms.—The people, whose hearts were united to their sovereign, were far from being backward in so wise a measure. Men of the best character and greatest influence, chear­fully follow the illustrious example, and, at the head of the thousands of their brethren, appear in arms, to cultivate, to inform themselves (more fully) in the art of war. —And, by the appear­ance they make, one would have thought, they were preparing to engage and oppose a most powerful enemy.—And yet, it was a time of peace!—No enemy nigh—None that dared to lift the finger, or move the tongue against them!—

[Page 10]TO persons unacquainted with the true cha­racter, and general conduct of mankind, in this state of sin and imperfection,—to such as never studied the rules, nor considered the importance of true policy, these measures might appear superfluous, and all these preparations for safety and defence, but needless steps.— That, as peace and tranquility were restored, they might lay aside arms, and give them­selves up to ease and enjoyment.—That their only concern, was to reap the fruit of their toils, and taste the sweets of peace.

THIS, indeed, has been the manner of most of the states and nations, in the world.—Even the most warlike and politic,—nations that have been victorious in arms,—states that have tri­umph'd in war, been the scourge of their ene­mies, and a terror to the world of mankind, have not been, always, able to resist the force of so pleasing a charm, or free themselves from the effects of so fatal a mistake.

A MAN, or a people, must know but little of the true temper and disposition of mankind,— but little of what has happened from the begin­ning, to states and kingdoms, in consequence of remissness, in times of peace and tranquility, not to see the wisdom and necessity of such provident steps,—not to know, that the most potent and respectable state, in perfect tranquility and the height of prosperity, may soon be disturbed, by it's enemies, and, if in a defenceless condition, quickly reduced to the greatest distress,—to the brink of destruction.

[Page 11]IN a state of nature, every man has a right to liberty, property and life: And no one (unless injured, or in his own defence) can, reasonably, deprive him of either.—Society is formed for the preservation and defence of the common rights of mankind, to the end, that the blessings of life may be secured to all. The liberties and privileges, the property and possessions of socie­ty, ought always to be held sacred; and no one is at liberty to invade, violate, or even incroach upon them, upon any pretence whatever.

REASON and understanding were given, to teach men the unalterable difference between right and wrong, justice and injustice.—Consci­ence was implanted, in the human breast, to in­force to a behaviour, becoming the character of moral agents,—to excite to a conduct, towards others, agreable to the fitness of things, to the eternal rules of justice and equity; and to such a treatment of all, as should express as sacred a regard to the rights and liberties of others, as unto their own. And, to the same important purposes, was a divine revelation added, and the word of GOD given.—But—alas!—Reason and conscience were too weak a restraint!—Revela­tion was not found sufficient to check, nor even the gospel of our LORD, to subdue, the lusts and corruptions of men, from whence come wars and fightings! *

EARLY did the fatal effects of lust and passion appear: And, from the time that Cain unjustly deprived his brother of life, down to the present [Page 12] day, such have been the depravity of human nature, and the power and prevalence of lust and passion, that the greater part of mankind, have made it their chief concern, to invade the rights and live upon the spoils of others. Am­bition, avarice, revenge, and other sordid lusts and passions, have governed the world, and made the earth a field of blood!—Wars, and rumours of wars, have been—Wars, and rumours of wars, will be, until the happy period commences, when ‘the law shall go forth out of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem; when GOD shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: And they shall beat their swords into plow-shares, and their spears into pruning-hooks:’ When ‘na­tion shall not lift up sword against nation, nei­ther shall they learn war any more:’ * And when ‘the kingdoms of this world shall become the kingdoms of our LORD, and of his Christ, and he shall reign for ever and ever.’

IN the mean time, it is happy for mankind, that, partly from necessity, and partly for mutual safety and defence, they have been led, by pro­vidence, to form themselves into societies; to the end, that, as far as the present state of things will admit, the evils, that might arise from a different state, might be prevented, the natural and common rights of mankind preserved, and the blessings, resulting therefrom, more freely and universally enjoyed.

HENCE it appears, that, as one important end of society, is protection and defence, every mea­sure, [Page 13] every step, conducive to this end, tends to the peace and happiness of mankind. This, therefore, justifies the conduct and measures of Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah, upon the most rational principles, and sets them in the clearest point of light, as wise and good,— wor­thy the king and people which pursued them, and as an example not unworthy the emulation of the most illustrious princes and respectable states. And happy for mankind, were such ex­amples more closely attended to, and like mea­sures more carefully pursued, by rulers and people, in every state!—

THE disposition, principles, conduct and cha­racter of the people of Judah, who so cordially and universally concurred with their sovereign, in these wise measures, for the general safety and happiness of the kingdom, are not unworthy peculiar notice. The heads of the people, with the multitude of their brethren, willingly offered them­selves unto the LORD, with their arms, as ready prepared for the war. *

AS it was now a time of peace and tranquility, with the kingdom of Judah, it is evident they could not have in view any immediate enter­prize against their enemies: They had none to encounter. An offensive war (unless by special direction from heaven) could never be justified, upon principles of reason and equity: This could not, therefore, be the design of a king, who had made GOD his guide, and religion his care; or of a people who were taught the law of the [Page 14] LORD, and had wisely adopted it as the rule of their conduct. For these reasons, it is natural to suppose, that, as to revive and encourage a truly martial spirit, and put the kingdom in the best state of defence, were the ends immediately in view, martial exercises, and the cultivation of the use of weapons of defence, and of the know­ledge of the art of war, was the service to which they offered themselves; that, in this way, they might become a terror to their enemies, and keep them at a distance:—Or, if any should dare to insult, or disturb their peace, they might meet with the fate they justly deserved.

AND, verily, this is a service of no small im­portance to a nation, or a state, to preserve peace, when enjoy'd, as well as to reduce an enemy to reason and equitable terms of peace, when at war.—A service, therefore, that ought, at all times, and by all states, to have a proper attention paid unto it.

WHEN once a martial spirit sinks, and skill in military exercises and warlike accomplishments are held in contempt, the art of war and use of arms neglected, among a people, they are ex­posed to the insults of every invader, are an easy prey to their weakest enemies, and, like Laish of old, seem to be marked out, in providence, for speedy destruction. On the contrary, to allude to the language of Moses to his people, One ac­quainted with arms and inured to the exercise and arts of war, will chase a thousand, and two will put ten thousand to flight. *

[Page 15]CONVINCED of this, the heads of the people, with their brethren, willingly offered themselves to this service.—The manner, temper and disposi­tion, with which they engaged in martial exerci­ses, and inured themselves to the use of arms, were peculiar agreable and engaging. — It was not the effect of force and constraint, but their own free choice. They were voluntiers, in this im­portant service, to their King and Country —They saw the importance of protection, in their rights, liberties, privileges and possessions —They saw the excellency of the blessings of peace, and tasted the sweets of freedom and rest:—And, to put it out of the power of their enemies, to give them uneasiness, for the future, they chear­fully forego every inconvenience, every expence, that might attend such services, improve them­selves in the use of arms and arts of defence, and voluntarily arm and prepare themselves, to meet the enemy and play the man, for the cities and people of GOD.

THE principles they acted upon, and were in­fluenced by, were, if possible, still more important, to the purposes of safety and defence. Princi­ples of piety and virtue warmed their hearts, inspired their souls, and gave the spring to action. Their excellent sovereign had set the example, in making religion his greatest care —Their willing hearts catch the fire, from so illustrious a pattern, their obedient souls are quickly warmed with the sacred flame.—They consider the glory of their king, the defence of their country, and the pre­servation of the rights and liberties of the peo­ple, as the cause of GOD: And, in devoting [Page 16] themselves to so important a service, they do it as unto GOD himself.—They willingly offered themselves unto the LORD. *

THE common father of mankind, who is su­preme LORD of all, graciously condescends to consider his people, as his peculiar care, and their cause, as his own. Those, who engage in the cause of his people, and set themselves for their defence, are, therefore, to consider themselves as guardians and trustees for GOD, having the rights, property, liberties and lives of their fel­low-men (a sacred trust!—) committed to their charge; and by this consideration, be excited to make devotion to God the principle, and love to him the spring of action. Piety to GOD, and principles of virtue and religion, lay the happiest foundation for, and inspire men with the most engaging and powerful motives to, the highest attainments and greatest usefulness, in every character, in life: But in none are they of grea­ter importance, than in the character of those, who, voluntarily, offer themselves to the service of mankind, for their protection and defence.

LOVE to GOD, which contains the essence of religion, is a source of every virtue, every grace; and inspires the soul with the noblest principles of action. From this divine root, springs that benevolence of heart, towards man­kind, which excites men, for the public good, for the safety and happiness of society, of their country, to sacrifice any thing, every thing dear in life,—yea, life itself.—From this blessed [Page 17] fountain, flows that humane, generous, benefi­cent temper, towards our fellow men, that forms the truly public spirit—warms the heart with a tender, patriotic concern, and excites to a faith­ful care, for the welfare of others, and the pre­servation and enjoyment of the common rights of mankind.

FIRMLY to believe, fully to realize, deeply to be impress'd with, the great principles of piety to GOD, and, in the services we engage in, for the good of mankind, to act as devoted to him;—to realize the being, perfections, govern­ment and providence of GOD;—to act as under his immediate inspection, and as accountable to him for every step;—to remember, that the wise and virtuous, faithful and just, are assured of his favour, and that those of an opposite cha­racter, are exposed to his displeasure, and sure of the severest resentment of an angry GOD, must have the happiest tendency, to store the mind with the noblest sentiments, and lead a man to act with the firmest resolution and most ex­alted views.

INSPIRED with the principles of piety, govern­ed by the laws of GOD, encouraged and sup­ported with the motives of religion, such men, in the court or in the field, in peace or war, in private or public stations, look with a generous contempt, a sacred abhorrence, upon every ad­vantage, they might make to themselves, at the expence of their virtue.—No self-interest, no venal motive, can counter-vail, with them, the pub­lic good, the safety and happiness of society—of [Page 18] mankind.—The frowns of the great, and the flatteries of the vulgar, are equally despised; the greatest toils are chearfully endured, the most self-denying services are, with pleasure, engaged in, in this cause of GOD. In honour to GOD, they wait on their king; in devotion to him, they serve their country, and for the glory of his name, stand ready, chearfully to submit to every hardship, firmly to face every danger, and, for the support of his cause and defence of the liberties and lives of his people, freely to make their own a sacrifice, and shed their dearest blood. Like Moses, of old, they rather chuse to endure hardness, and suffer the greatest afflictions, with the people of GOD, than, at the dear expence of the honour of GOD, the safety of his people, or their own virtue, enjoy the pleasures of sin, for a season. * Yea, when this is the price, the most tempting pleasures, the most exalted honours,—even crowns and king­doms are offered them in vain!—

THUS the principles of piety lay the founda­tion, for that excellent qualification, which was a peculiar characteristic virtue, in the men of Judah, who so chearfully offered themselves unto the LORD, in the service and for the defence of their king and country.—They are stiled mighty men of valour. —By which is intended, not only, that they were men of strength and sprightli­ness—men of good constitutions, and in the prime of life, and on these accounts, men fit for war­like services and enterprizes; but also, and more especially, that they were men of firmness of [Page 19] mind, of a manly, couragious and warlike spirit, able to endure the toil, and face the dangers of war, and prepared to bear the charge of an enemy, with becoming firmness and real forti­tude.—A virtue, a qualification, of the greatest importance to a soldier!—

VALOUR, or true fortitude, is that virtue, by which men are enabled to preserve presence of mind, to possess themselves fully, think clearly, judge wisely and act with calmness, firmness and resolution, in times of great confusion and tu­mult, in the midst of most pressing dangers and perplexing distresses. A virtue which excites to the noblest actions, stimulates to the boldest en­terprizes, which reason dictates, judgment di­rects, or duty calls them to engage in.—But, then, it is carefully to be distinguished from rashness, presumption, fury and madness; which, in consequence of false notions of this virtue, or success attending such unnatural and unreasona­ble exertions, too often gain applause, and take the name of Valour. But the difference be­tween them, is very great,—the same as between reason and passion, sound judgment and mad­ness.

TRUE Valour is, therefore, to be considered as a moral virtue, having reason for it's founda­tion, and religion for it's encouragement and support. And where courage, valour or forti­tude, has reason for it's basis, and is encouraged, cultivated and supported, by the principles of religion, it becomes a virtue of the highest rank, and prompts and leads men on to the most he­roic [Page 20] undertakings: And when properly called, in a cause worthy their attention, it enables men, with calmness and composure of mind, to face the greatest dangers, to stand the severest shocks, to meet, undaunted and serene, the charge of the most formidable enemy, and all the horrors of war.

THE want of true fortitude, is always attended with disgrace and reproach, frequently with shameful defeats, and sometimes with total de­struction. But, inspired with this virtue, a man may engage the boldest rival, in arms, and per­form the most glorious exploits.

NUMBERLESS are the instances, of the amazing effects of this eminent virtue, as founded in, and exercised upon, the principles of reason and re­ligion, which are celebrated in the history of ages past.—The sacred pages exhibit a list of the most valiant Heroes, whose virtue and piety, inspiring them with true fortitude of soul, ex­alted them to the highest pitch of honour, and led and enabled them to perform the most il­lustrious deeds. Inspired with the principles of religion, and endued with this god-like virtue, they ‘subdued kingdoms, wrought righteous­ness,—stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in sight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.’ *—But not to add—

IN the above representation, we have had, imperfectly exhibited, a sketch of the best policy [Page 21] and wisest measures, pursued upon the noblest principles and with the most generous views.— A wise king and a loyal people, from love to GOD and their country, with a sacred emula­tion, uniting their endeavours, for the preserva­tion of peace, the safety of the state, the glory of the kingdom, and the liberty and happiness of the people.

WHEN kings and rulers act the part of fathers to a people, and from virtuous principles, make it their care, by the best policy and wisest mea­sures, to render them safe and happy.—When a people offer themselves willingly to every service, which the honour of their king, or safety of the state requires:—When, not only in war, being roused by threatned danger and distress, from an approaching, or assaulting enemy, but even in peace, when no enemy is nigh, persons of the most respectable character, as well as their bre­thren, of a lower rank, upon religious principles, offer themselves to those martial exercises and warlike services, which are necessary for the safety and defence of a state, the preservation of peace, liberty and happiness to a people, and the protection of the common rights of mankind; it affords the most pleasing prospect, yields the most solid satisfaction and lays the surest foun­dation for lasting tranquility.—The fear of the LORD will quickly fall upon the nations and kingdoms that are round about them, enemies will bring presents and bow themselves at their feet, and gladly accept the terms of peace at their hands. *—Injured innocence will always find a [Page 22] safe retreat, in such a state, and a sure protection under the shadow of it's wings.— Fitly, there­fore, may the happy prince of such a state be addressed, in the language of Sheba's queen, to Solomon of old.— ‘Happy are thy men, happy are these thy servants, which stand continually before thee.—Blessed be the LORD thy GOD, which delighted in thee to set thee on his throne, to be king for the LORD thy GOD: Because thy GOD loved Israel, to establish them forever, therefore made he thee king over them!’ *—Of such a state and people also, it may with equal propriety be said, in the concise, but expressive language of the royal Psalmist‘Happy is that people, that is in such a case: Yea, happy is that people, whose GOD is the LORD!’

SUCH were the character and state of GOD's people, in the kingdom of Judah, at the happy time, when the words we have now had under consideration, were wrote; and such was Judah's king —Such, in later times, has Britain been—such is Britain still—and such is Britain's King.—And, in a careful imitation of the il­lustrious example of Jehoshaphat and GOD's peo­ple, and a close attention to their wise measures, for mutual safety, glory and felicity,— such (GOD grant) they may ever continue to be!— A terror to their enemies, an asylum to the in­jured and distressed,—a sure protection for li­berty, a lasting defence to the natural and com­mon rights of mankind!—But to come nearer home—

[Page 23]THE preceeding discourse, as it countenances wise measures, pursued upon religious principles, for the safety and happiness of a people, shows the propriety and importance of the care that has been taken, by the people of this land, for these purposes, from the first settlement of the country, down to the present day.

INSPIRED with the same sentiments, which influenced to, and governed the measures of Jehoshaphat and his people, for mutual safety, felicity and protection;—to enjoy the blessings of liberty, civil and religious, with greater secu­rity; our fathers, in severer reigns, left a pleasant land, and, at the risk of their lives, sought a safe retreat, from arbitrary power, among merciless savages, in this inhospitable wilderness. A mer­ciful GOD, who, with a father's pity, always beholds the distress of his people oppressed, smiled upon their enterprize, and gave them the land for a possession.—And, verily, it is a plea­sant land, a goodly heritage.—

EARLY did the first settlers of this country discover a due concern, a provident care, for themselves and posterity, in making the best provision in their power, for safety and defence. No sooner was society formed and civil govern­ment established, but, even in their infant state, they made it their care, to put the militia of the country upon a respectable footing.

VARIOUS were the institutions, for this im­portant purpose.—Like Jehoshaphat, the chief rulers made the defence of their country, and the safety of the people, an object of their con­stant [Page 24] and closest attention; and by their ex­ample and influence, and in every wise and laudable way, endeavoured to inspire the people with a martial spirit, and excite them to excel in military skill, the use of arms and art of war.— They often honour'd them with their presence, in the military exercises, and did not look upon it beneath their dignity, sometimes, to appear in arms themselves. Their good example was not without it's influence, nor their spirited measures without the happiest effects. Persons of the best character and estates, chearfully followed, and, with the multitude of their brethren, willingly offered themselves to the LORD, in this important service.

TO these purposes and for these important ends, the Honorable Artillery Company was form­ed, soon after the settlement of the country;— to be a school for military exercise and disci­pline;—to teach and instruct in martial skill and the art of war.—Great have been the benefits resulting from such a wise design. Many brave captains and leaders have gone out from hence, that have done worthily for GOD and their country.—The primary design, of this early care of the fathers of the country, for military skill and warlike accomplishments, is happily ob­tained. After a long series of hardships, toils, dangers and distresses of cruel wars, with the common enemy, who were our rivals in America, and the barbarous, merciless savages, whose thirst for blood and revenge has always been insatiable, through the smiles of heaven, we see this happy land in a state of peace and rest.—But still, mea­sures [Page 25] for defence are necessary, a military spirit to be encouraged, knowledge in the use of arms and art of war, to be cultivated; or soon,— very soon, we shall be marked out for a prey, ready and prepared for the enemy's hand. Such an institution, therefore, even in the present happy state of peace and quiet, is of no small importance; as, properly attended to, it may answer many valuable purposes, serve as a spring to a martial spirit, excite others to emulation, and happily encourage those exercises, which greatly tend to the protection and safety of this people.

TO honour and countenance an institution, so well calculated for the public good, Gentlemen of the highest character and first places of trust and government among us, have chearfully at­tended on these occasions:—And it is with pe­culiar joy we behold the COMMANDER in CHIEF, and first Magistrates of the province▪ attending the services of this day;—to express their readiness to countenance and disposition to encourage so worthy a design.— In this, they have the example of one of the best of kings, and of the princes and chiefs of a most respecta­ble state, to countenance them.

TO honour their exercises in arms, the gen­tlemen of this ancient and honorable company, have wisely called religion in aid, that, being sancti­fied by the word of GOD and prayer, and, upon religious principles, inspired with true fortitude and valour, they might be excited and encouraged to excel in their profession, in military skill and [Page 26] the art of war —It is with real chearfulness we join them herein, and with great sincerity, we wish them a blessing out of the house of the LORD.

TO revive and encourage a military spirit and martial exercises, upon religious principles, has been the design of the preceeding discourse; that, from love to GOD and our country, from a sacred regard to our own safety and happiness, to the welfare of society and the common rights and liberties of mankind, all might be engaged, in their respective characters and stations, to em­ulate each other, in such measures as shall tend to mutual protection and defence.

TOO often has it happened, that states, which have been successful in war, given law to their enemies and triumphed in arms, by negligence in this point, have been reduced to defenceless condition and easily subjected to the power of those, who, but a little while before, were bow­ing at their feet and gladly submitting to any terms they prescribed.—How unhappy, how in­glorious would it be, after the remarkable suc­cesses, with which heaven has blessed our arms, and when peace is restored, and all means of safety and defence are put into our hands, should this be our folly and fate?—How should we, with tears of grief, of shame and remorse, lament (too late) our stupidity, & curse the indolent spirit that possessed us?—Yea, how justly will posterity, in ages to come, rise up and curse us, as the causes of their wretchedness, and the authors of the misery, to which they are doomed, without the hope or possibility of redress!—

[Page 27]MAY the characters, that have been presented us, inspire us with a different spirit,—and a due concern for the honour of our sovereign, the welfare of the nation, and the preservation of liberty, peace and happiness to our selves and posterity, influence and excite us to a different conduct.—May all prejudices subside, may every fordid lust and passion be forever banished, and a manly, generous and public spirit prevail in every breast, and influence all to seek the public good.

LET all be concerned to be possessed of true fortitude of mind, which, founded in and culti­vated upon the principles of virtue and religion, will render us good soldiers to our king, power­ful guardians to our country, and real benefactors to mankind.

INSPIRED with this divine virtue, we shall be prepared for every service, armed against every danger, and able to support ourselves under every shock and trial of life.—By this, we shall be pro­vided for the last encounter, enabled to support the charge of the last enemy, and, even in this war from which there is no discharge,—in death itself, come off victorious, and rise triumphant to a blessed immortality.

THE END.

ERRATA.

Page 7. l. 21. f. weak, r. weakness. p. 9. l. 16. f. stone, r. store.

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