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Laftly, This Miracle was great in respect of the End for which it was wrought; and that was partly to confirm the Divinity of Christ's Person, and partly to confirm the Truth of the Doctrine deliver'd by him: both which were abundantly prov'd by such Works of Wonder, as no Man ever did, and such Words of eternal Life, as no Man ever spoke ; and therefore we find our Saviour appealing to them for the Proof of his Messiahship, saying, If I do not the Works of my Father, believe me not; but if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the Works, that ye may know and believe that the Father is in me, and I in him. John 10. 37, 38. This for the Miracle.

But what was the Effect of it? or what Influence had it upon those that saw it? Why, that the

Last words of the Gospel will inform us; When the Multitude Saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, who had given such Power unto Men. Admiration and Adoration were the general and, usual Effects and Consequents of all his mighty Works, which carry'd such apparent Marks and Signatures of a Divine Hand, as could not but astonish, and make them stand amaz’d at the fight of them. They marvelled, that is, they were feiz'd with Wonder, and {truck with Admiration at the Greatness of them, and the fupernatural Ways of doing them; and that put them upon glorifying of God, ascribing all the Efficacy and Operation of them to his Divine Hand, who alone was able to bring them to pass; adoring his Almighty and Infinite Wisdom and Goodness in making Men the Instruments of doing such mighty Works for their Conviction; for he it was that gave such Power unto Men. Such they yet thought Chrift to be, being not fully instructed in his eternal Power and Godhead.

Thus we see the Substance of this Day's Gospel, and the Miracle related in it, which is every way worthy of our most serious Thoughts and Meditations. And from the whole we may learn the following Lessons :

(1.) From Christ's pasling over the Sea, and going from place to place, we learn his unweary'd Diligence in doing Good, for that was the End and Design of all his Motions: His whole Life was spent in the Service of Mankind, and promoting their Welfare; he did it not by the by, or now and then upon great Occasions, but 'twas the whole Em.


ployment of his Life ; his Meat, and Drink, and Recrea? tion too was to be doing Good: His Practice herein is ari excellent. Pattern for all his Followers, who are to imitate him herein as far as they can, and to omit no Opportunities of serving one another, according to their several Abilities and Capacities. But this hath been elsewhere press'd and recommended more at large.

(2.) From what hath been said, we niay observe our Saviour's great Kindness to this poor Paralytick, in healing the Maladies both of Body and Soul together; for he at once remov'd his Palsy for the Health of his Body, and pronounc'd his Pardon for the Welfare of his Soul, and by both bless'd him with a perfect and compleat Cure of all his Infirmities : he did not things by halves, nor made any empty and insignificant Offers of Kindness, but ever did more than he seem'd to promise or pretend to, yea more than any could ask or think, which is a farther Instance of his inexpressible Love to Mankind, and ought to be both admir'd and imitated by us as well as we may:

(3.) From the Scribes and Pharisees carping at our Saviour, and charging him with Blasphemy for forgiving the Sins of this poor Paralytick, we learn the Proneness of evil Men to defame the best Persons, and find fault .with the - best Actions, and if they dealt so with Christ himself, his Disciples may not expect better Dealing from them. The Disciple is not above his Lord; and if our Master met with evil Treatment from the Scribes and Pharisees, we may learn to bear with the same Usage from the like Persons : daily Experience shews us how apt ill-niinded Men are to accuse and traduce such as are every way better than themselves, and to spy a Mote in their Brother's Eye, when they cannot see a Beam in their own; we find what perverse Comments and Constructions they make of the most innocent and well-meaning Actions, and how greedily they seek occasions of Trouble and Disturbance. We observ'd this in many other Instances of the Pharisees, and we may easily observe the same in too many of their Followers.

(4.) From our Saviour's working a Miracle to take off the Charge of Blasphemy, and exerting his Divine Power to silence his Enemies, we may learn to use all possible Means, and particularly by well-doing (as the Apostle directs) to put to silence the Ignorance of foolim Men. St. Paul's Advice is, Let not your Good be evil spoken of: Now though this be not always in our power to prevent, yet we are to


do the best we can, to elude the Cavils and Calumnies of evil Men. There, are some who are as ready now to blaf. pheme the Ways, as they were of old the Person of Christ : and as to these, our Endeavour should be to put a Muzzle upon their Mouths, as we do upon, fome Creatures, who are too apt both to bark and bite; that is, to cut off all occafion from then that seek occasion, that they may be either afraid or afhan’d to speak evil of us.

Lastly, From the People's glorifying and blesling God upon this Miracle of healing a lick Man, let us learn to give God the Glory of all his Mércies, and to ascribe the Hanour due to his Name; particalarly, as we are taught by the Gospel for this Day, let us praise God as for the Life and Doctrine, so for the Miracles of our Blefred Sa. viour, which gave the highest Honour and Confirmation to both. Let us, frequently meditate on the Number and Greatness of them, the better to raise our Minds to a higher Esteen and Thankfulness for them, that will mightily donduce to the confirming of us in the Belief of his Do&trine, and to the building of us up more firmly in our moft Holy Faith, and that will bring us at last to the end of our Faitheven the Salvation of our Soul: Which God, grant, &copy

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DISCOURSEL. The EPIstle for the Twentieth Sunday after

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Ephes, V. 15 :25 See then that ye walk circumfpely, not as Fools,

but Wife, redeeming the time, because the days are evil: Wherefore be ye not unwise, but underar

standing what the Will of the Lord is, &e. Biod : 05 :? it is: 159:- 1 sal to 1910 TUOTE are taught in the Collect for this. Day to pray, W that we may be kept from all things that may

hurt us, that fo being ready both in Body and Soul, we may chearfully accomplish those things that God would have done, &c. Which things requiring no Ima Care and Diligence to accomplish them,

The Epistle for the Day begins with an Exhortation to a wise, wary and circumspect Walking, to prevent the Evils that may otherwise befal us. The Apostle, in the foregoing part of the Chapter, had minded the Ephesians of the happy Change wrought in them by their embracing the Gospel, how they were translated from Darknefs to Light, and from the Power of Satan unto God, and therefore willed them to walk , Children of Light; ver. 8. And because of the many Dangers, Difficýlties and Discouragements they might meet with in the way, he would have them to look warily about them: See then that ye walk cir.. cumspectly, &c. Where we have,


First, A Caution to look to our Ways, and walk circumspectly'; which being usher'd in with a Note of Attention, See then, shews it to be a Matter necessary to be observ'd, and dangerous to be omitted.

Secondly, We have a Pattern or Direction to walk by, express di both negatively and positively, Not 'as Fool's, but as Wise.


Thirdly, We have a Way or Means prescribd for our circumfpect Walking; and that is by redeeming the Time. SFourthly, A strong Argument or Motive to persuade thereuntő; and that is, Because the Danis, are evil. These things, with the good Úse and Improvement to be made of then, contain the whole of this Day's Epistle. - First, I begin then with the Caution here given to all Chriftians, See, then that ye walk circumspectly, in the Original it is, See bono circumspectly, ye can walk: Where a Christian's Life is describ'd by Walking, which we know is a progressive Motion, and implies -a continuál going forward; tis oppos’d to sitting still, or indulging to Eate and *Idleness, and so gives us to understand that Christianity is no idle, lazy or Nuggish thing, but consists in Action, and is still moving us forward in the Ways of Holiness and Vertue. Hence we find it set forth in Scripture by fuch Expression's ás iniply Activity and Motion tis sometimes callid a seeking or searching after God, which imports Sollicitousness and Intention; sometimes a prelling forward towards the Mark, which betokens Labour and Difficulty, and engages the whole Man; sometimes again 'tis express'd by a Race, which bespeaks the swiftelt Motion, and requires us not onlġ to walk, but to run the Paths of God's Compiandments lastly, to mention no more, 'tis ofren contpard to a Warfare, which we know calls for our main Strength, and excites the greatest Diligence : all which and other like Expreslions fhew Religion to be no lazy, but an active and busy thing, that finds Enıployment for all our Faculties, and puts us upon the continual Exercise of Vertue and good Works. This is imply'd here in the word Walking, To often us’d in Scripture to express our Christian Course.

But how are we here directed to walk? Why, that the next word tells us, See that ye walk circumspectly. The word in the Original is sirgab wss which signifies an exa&, regular and accurate Walking, or a keeping close to the Rule, without transgressing or swerving from it, either by omitting what it requires,' or committing what it forbids. Now here great Care and Circumspection is necessary,

Ift, To find out the right Way in which we are to walk, 2dly, To walk warily, prudently, and inoffensively in it, 3dly, To persevere and keep in it to the very last. ..

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