Images de page
PDF
ePub

Secondly. There is fometimes a strange, providential Concurrence of unusual, unlikely Accidents, for the bringing to light great Villanies. Thirdly. God fometimes makes one great Sin a Means to detect and lay open another. Fourthly. God fometimes infatuates, and strikes the Sinner with Frenzy, and fuch a Distraction, as makes him reveal all his hidden Guilt. Fifthly. God fometimes lets loose the Sinner's Confcience upon him, fo that he can find no Rest within himself, till he has confeffed and declared his Sin. Sixthly and laftly. God fometimes fmites and confounds him, by fome notable, immediate Judgment from Heaven.

These I fay, are some of the chief Ways by which God finds out the Sinner in this Life. But what now? If none of all these fhould reach his Cafe, but that he carries his Crimes all his Life clofely, and ends that quietly; and perhaps in the Eye of the World, honourably too; and fo has the good Luck to have his Shame cast into, and covered under the fame Ground with his Carcass? Why yet, for all this, the Man has not escaped; but his Guilt ftill haunts, and follows him into the other World, where there can be no longer a Concealment

cealment of it, but it must inevitably find him out. For as it is in Daniel, Ch. vii. *. 10. When the Judgment shall be fet, the Books fhall be alfo opened. Even thofe Doomf day Books (as I may fo call them) wherein God has kept a complete Register of all the Villanies that were ever committed a gainst Him, which then fhall be difplayed, and read aloud in the Audience of that great and terrible Court. The Confideration of which, furely, may well put thofe excellent Words of the Apostle in Rom. vi. 21. with this little Alteration of them, into our Mouths. What Fruit can we [now] have of thofe Things, whereof we shall [then] be afhamed! So, what Advantage of Pleasure, Profit, or Honour, can the Sinner promise to himfelf from any Sin, which may be laid in the Balance against that infinite and incredible Weight of Reproach, with which it will certainly pay him home at that Day?

[ocr errors]

For, could he perfuade the Mountains to cover him, or could he hide himfelf in the BoJom of the great Deep, or could he wrap himfelf in the very Darkness of Hell; yet ftill his Sin would fetch him out of all, and prefent him naked, open, and defenceless

before

before that fiery Tribunal, where he must res ceive the Sentence of everlasting Confufion; and where the Devil himself will be fure to do him Juftice, as never failing to be a most liberal Rewarder of all his Pimps and Vaf fals, for the fecret Service done him in this

World.

And now, what is the whole foregoing Difcourfe, but a kind of Panegyrick (fuch a mean one as it is) upon that glorious Thing Innocence? I fay, Innocence, which makes that Man's Face fhine in Publick, whofe Actions and Behaviour it governs in Private. For the innocent Perfon lives not under the continual Torment of Doubts and Fears, left he should be difcovered; for the Light is his Friend, and to be seen and looked upon is his Advantage: The most retired Parts of his Life being like Jewels; which, though indeed moft commonly kept locked up in the Cabinet, yet are then most admired and valued, when shewn, and fet forth by the Brightness of the Sun, as well as by their

own.

How poor a Thing Secrecy is to corrupt a Rational Man's Behaviour, has been. fufficiently declared already, by the Survey, which we have taken, of those several Ways, whereby

by the most wife and just Governor of the World is pleased to defeat, and befool the Confidence of the fubtileft, and the flyeft Sinners. We have seen alfo, what Paper Walls fuch Perfons are apt to inclose themfelves with; and how flight, thin, and tranSparent all their finest Contrivances of Secrecy are; while, notwithstanding all the private Receffes, and dark Closets, which they fo much trust in, the Windows of Heaven are still open over their Heads: And now, what should the Confideration of all this do, but every Minute of our Lives remind us, fo to behave ourselves, as under the Eye of that God, who fees in fecret, and will reward us openly?

To whom be rendred and afcribed, as is moft due, all Praife, Might, Maje fty, and Dominion, both now and for evermore. Amen.

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

6269Q9Q9QUED

The Recompence of the Reward.

A

SERMON

Preached in Chrift-Church, Oxon, before the University, Sept. 11. 1698.

ΟΝ

HEBREWS xi. 24, 25, 26.

By Faith Mofes, when he came to Tears,refused to be called the Son of Pharaoh's Daughter. Choofing rather to fuffer Affliction with the People of God, than to enjoy the Pleasures of Sin for a Seafon. Efteeming the Reproach of Chrift greater Riches, than all the Treafures of Egypt. For he had reSpect unto the Recompence of the Reward.

HIS Chapter exhibits to us a noT ble and victorious Army of Saints, together with an Account of those heroick Actions and Exploits, which they were renowned for, in their fe veral Ages; and have been fince transmitted

fuch

« PrécédentContinuer »