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when all the the Comforts and Beauties of it are Vanished, and when it appears in no Colours but the Sable and Mounful ones of Perplexity and Aloni foment; When we shall be continually Haunted with a Dread, not Unlike to that of Cain, that every one that meeteh us, will Slay us; When we shall, at once, wish for the Comfort of Conversing with our Friends, and yet Shrink under that With, left They should indeed prove our Enemies, and Undefignedly give us the Mortal Wound; When at once, Natural Appetite shall push us forward to a necessary Supply of Nourishment, and more Cautious Thought Forbid our Approaches to it, left it should be Impregnated with the Fatal Poyson; When we shall be Inceffantly racked with Fear of Admitting the very Air, we Live by, left we should draw in Death with it; When Time shall be Intirely swallowed up in One Uninterrupted Funeral; When we shall be ever Uncertain, whether the Terrors of the Present Moment are Risen as High, as Terrors can Rise, or, whether the Next Moments, proving as Deceitful as the Pre
sent, shall bring on a Scene of itill Ghaftlier Thoughts, or Ghaftlier Sights, than
Those that usher’d in the moments, which Now sit so very Heavy, that they seem to have lost their Fleeting Nature, and to Dwell upon us; When Clouds of Horror Drive fo thick over our Minds, that there is no Room for one Gladsom Ray of Light, or Comfort to break in between them; and, When we shall be scarce able to Determine, whether such a Death, or such a Dread, be the Greater Evil.
We are at present to consider, what our Opinions of things will then be; how Willing and Ready we shall then be, to purchase Relief under our Insuperable Difficulties, Freedom from our Insupportable Reflexions, and an Intire Sense of Safety, at any Rate, or by any means; either, by an Útter Detestation of the Sins of Other Men, without respect of Persons, or without any Other Respect and Difference, than That of turning the Greatest Weight of our Abhorrence, upon the Iniquities and Abominations of Those, who seem to have been the Greatest Occasions of our Misery; or, by Boldly Exhort
U 4 - ing
ing and Reproving the most Profligate, or Powerful Sinner alive; or, by Abandoning, Utterly, our Infidelity, or Impenitency, our Corrupt Principles, or Corrupt Practices, all the Dearest of our Sinful Gratifications, of Body or Mind; Tamely submitting our Reason to an Unshaken Belief of the Mysteries, and our Passions to an Intire Obedience to the Precepts of the Gospel.
Let us therefore Now, by a wise Choice, take into our Minds, such a Judgment of Things, as we shall not Then be able to keep Out of Them; Let us now be Industrious in Performing the Duties, which we shall Then Hate the Thoughts of Neglecting. Though our Endeavours may Now be sufficient to Prevent the Judgments of God, they may not Then suffice to the Removal of Them. Let us turn to the Lord with all our Hearts, and diligently seek him, whilst be may be found. Behold, 'now is the Accepted time, behold, now is the day of Salvation :
Let our Apprehensions of the Evils, which surround us, work so Happy and Lasting a Change in us, that those Evils
Themselves may never Invade and overtake us, but that we may obtain the Mercy and Favour of the most High, such · Degrees of his Mercy and Favour, as may
Effectually Preserve us from Destruction,
SERMON VIII. The Temporal Advantages of
PROV. III. 16. Length of days is in her right hand; and
in ber left hand Riches and Honour.
T TISDOM, or Religion, is here W introduced Holding out to
. men's View, the greatest Temporal Blessings, as Inducements to engage them in her Service. And the same Encouragements to Virtue and Goodness, are offer'd in Other places of Holy Scripture. Therefore St. Paul afsures us, * that Godliness is profitable to all things; having promise of the life that Now is, as
* 1 Tim. iv. 8.'