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the Members of a Community, are, in many Respects, and on many Accounts, fo Mix'd and Complicated, that in the Political, as well as the Natural Body, when one Member fuffers, all the Members suffer with it. Where is the Petulancy, or, the Impertinence, of Claiming to ourselves that Concern with Impious Men, or, those Relations to them, which we should be glad to Shake off and Disannull. The Case is so Plain, that it needs not to be Largely Illustrated, and so Afflicting, that it cannot be Neglected, That our Relations to Them. are, in This State, Indiffoluble; That we must have Concern for Them, unless we can be Unconcern’d for our Selves; That their Rebellions against God are Apt to call down Storms of Divine Fury upon the Kingdom, and, that an Universal Calamity will Affect Us in Common with Themselves.
The Deliverance of Righteous Lot from the Destruction of Sodom, was Extraordinary; And of such Uncommon and Extraordinary Instances, the Spirit of God speaks in the xivth Ch. of Ezek.
with Relation to the several Kinds of National Judgments, and Particularly That, which should Now move our Piety, as well as our Fear: If I send a Pestilence into that Land, and pour out my Fury upon it in Blood; to cut off from it Man and Beast; though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord, they pall deliver neither Son, nor Daughter; they mall but deliver their own Souls by their Righteousness: Though God should think fit to deliver such Extraordinary Persons, in an Extraordinary Manner; yet even their Families, even the Dearest Branches of them, their Sons and their Daughters, should fall in the Common Destruction. And, in all Ordinary Cases, the Great Instruments of God's Vengeance, the Sword, the Famine, and the Pestilence, seem to break in, Promiscuoufly, upon Virtuous, and Vicious Men. If any Person be Preserved, in the very middle of Danger, by the special Interposition of Heaven, from these Great Evils; yet do They plainly Ravage and Consume the Inhabitants of the Land, without vis fible Difference or Discrimination.
So far as it is thus Proper and Natural for us, to Detest and Bewail thợ Sins of our Brethren, , because, we, as well as Themselves, are Thereby in Danger of being visited by Publick Calamity, in Danger of being Involved with them and by them, in a General Desolation, fo far, the Propriety and Obligations of this Duty do chiefly depend upon the Innate Principle of Self-preservation.
But we are under Further Engagements to it, as it is the necessary Consequence of that Love of our Neighbours Themselves, which is Indispensably required at our hands. Our Affectionate Concern for them, will constrain us to , Abhor and Bemoan those their Follies and Impieties, which must carry them, through the National Punishment, if they should bring it upon us, into Endless Misery; whilst Others, who may undergo the same Fate with them Here, shall pass, through the Doleful Vale of Death, into a Glorious Life.
And there are, still Other, and Superiour Reasons, of this Duty, grounded upon the zealous Concern we are Bound
to have for God's Glory, which is the Ul® timate and of the whole Creation. The Royal Prophet gives a Rule of Duty to Us, under this Pathetic account of his Fulfilling it Himself, in Both the parts of it, Deep Sorrow for the violations of God's Honour, and an Utter Abborrence of them: * Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy Law. + Do not I hate them that hate thee; and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? yea I hate them right fore; even as though they werè minė Enemies. 'Tis impossible to be Warin in the Love of God, and to be Cool and Unconcern’d, under a Sense of the Dishonour offer'd to Him, by our Brethren.
There is yet One Reason more of this Duty to be taken notice of, the Hope of its Acceptance with God, when 'tis added to a true Repentance for our own Sins. For when we are fo far from Espousing, or Approving the Prevailing Corruptions and Iniquities, that we cannot bear the very Thoughts of them; when our An
* Psal. cxix. 136.
Pfal. cxxxix, 21, 22,
m guish occasion’d by them is Pungent and
Te Lasting; when our real Abhorrehce of Euk them introduceth, as it will certainly inOUT troduce, the utmost Opposition to them, the according to our Circumstances and Caoli pacities; when we Humbly acknowledge, do that the feverest Publick Judgments Pets would be their Just Consequence and Rethward, and, when our Deprecations of such Pt Judgments are Sincere and Fervent; we 2. do, at once Demonstrate our Ardent
Love of God and Charity to our Bre
thren, our Faith, our Sincerity, our HuI mility, our Affiance, our Zeal, Disposimotions and Qualifications, which God,
Principally, Requires, and must therefore be Highly Acceptable to him. And hence it follows, that if we should
Happily Abound with Persons, who do e truly Detest, and Bewail, and oppose
themselves to, the Sins of the Times, and are therefore Adorned with All these Heavenly Dispositions, we may reasonably Hope, that they, through the Intercesfion of Chrift, may prevail for Mercy with God, that we Perise not.