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After this, he liv'd very dissolutely in the town of Dorchester; where, in a fit of sickness, he vow'd that, if God would spare his life, he would live as a new man; but he horribly forgot his vows. The instances of his impiety grew so numerous and prodigious, that the wrath of God could bear no longer with bim; he was ripen'd for the gallows.
After his condemnation, he vehemently protested his innocency of the fact for which he was condemn'd; but he confess'd “that God was righte. ous, thus to bring destruction upon him for secret adulteries."
A reprieve would have been obtain'd for him, if his foolish and froward refusing to hear a sermon on the day appointed for his execution had not hardened the heart of the judge against him. He who had been a great sooffer at the ordinances of God, now exposed himself by being left unto such a sottish action!
He bad horribly slighted all calls to repentance, and now, through some wretches over-perswading of him that he should not die according to sentence and order of the court, he hardened himself still in his unrepentant frame of mind.
When he came to the gallows, and saw death (and a picture of hell, too, in a negro then burnt to death at the stake, for burning her master's house, with some that were in it,) before his face, never was a cry for “Time! time! a world for a little time! the inexpressible worth of time!" uttered with a most unutterable anguish.
He then declared, that "the greatest burden then lying upon his miserable soul, was his having lived so unprofitably under the preaching of
(VII.) On March 11, 1686, was executed at Boston one James Morgan, for an horrible murther. A man, finding it necessary to come into his house, he swore he would run a spit into his bowels; and he was as bad 13 his word.
He was a passionate fellow, and now, after his condemnation, he much bewail'd his having been given to cursing in his passions.
The reverend person who preach'd unto a great assembly on the day of this
poor man's execution, did, in the midst of his sermon, take occasion to read a paper which he had receiv'd from the malefactor then present in the assembly. It was as followeth:
“), James Morgan, being condemn'd to die, must needs own, to the glory of God, that lle is righteous, and that Lhave by my sins provok'd him to destroy me before my
time. I have been a great-sinner, guilty of Sabbath-breaking, of lying, and of uncleanness; but there are especially two sing whereby I have offended the great God; one is that sin of drunkenDess, which has caused me to commit many other sins; for when in drink, I have been often guilty of cursing and swearing, and quarreling, and striking others. But the sin which lies most heavy upon my conscience is, that I have despised the word of God, and for many a fiue refused to hear it preach'd. For these things, I believe God has left me to that which Lo brought me to a shameful and miserable death. I do therefore beseech and warn all
persons, young men especially, to take heed of these sins, lest they provoke the Lord to de to them as he has justly done by me. And, for the further peace of my own conscience, think my self obliged to add this unto my foregoing confession, 'that I own the sentene which the honour'd court has pass' upon me, to be exceeding just;' inasmuch as (though hud no former grudge and malice against the man whom I have kill'd, yet) my passion a the time of the fact was so outrageous, as that it hurried me on to the doing of that whic makes me now justly proceeded against as a murderer.”
After the sermon, a minister, at his desire, went unto the place of ext cution with him. And of what passed by the way, there was a cop. taken, which here ensueth:
THE DISCOURSE OF THE MINISTER WITH JAMES MORGAN,
ON THE WAY TO HIS EXECUTION.
Min. I'm come hither to answer your desires, which just now you express'd to me in the publiel that I would give you my company at your execution.
Mor. Dear sir, how much am I beholden to you! You have already done a great deal for mi O, who am I, that I have been such a vile wretch, that any servants of God should take notice of u
Min. I beseech you to make this use of it: I believe there is not one Christian this day behoo ing you, who would not willingly be at the greatest pains they could devise to save your precio: soul. How merciful then is that man, who is God as well as man! How unspeakably ready the Lord Jesus Christ to save the souls of sinners that affectionately look unto him! The goodse and pitifulness of the most tender-hearted man in the world is but a shadow of what is in hin The compassions of any man, compar'd with the bowels of a merciful Jesus, are but as the paiate sun, or the painted fire, in comparison of the real.
Mor. O that I could now look unto him as I ought to do! Lord, help me!
Min. Well, you are now a dying man; the last hour or two of your life is now running. Yo know yourself now to stand just on the brink of eternity; you shall presently be in a state of For derful happiness or of horrible misery, which must endure forever: which of those estates do çe now count yourself stepping into ?
Vor. Oh, sir, I am afraid, but I am not without hope that God may have mercy on me.
Min. What's your ground for that hope? O, see that your confidences be not such as God w by and by reject !
Mor. I don't know well what to say, but this, I hope, is a good sign: I have lived in many grie ous sins, in lying, drinking, Sabbath-breaking, and evil company-keeping: God has made ne these so bitter to my soul, that I would not commit them again, might I have my life this afterno by doing it.
Jin. That's a great word; God grant it may not be a word only, the good word of a good par without such a thorough change of heart as you must have if you would not perish everlasting You are not like to have any longer time in this world to try the sincerity of your profession.
Nor. I know it, and I beseech you, sir, to help me what you cao: I hope the means used wi me since my condemnation has not been lost.
Min. I would not have the sense of the pain and shame which your body is about to under any ways hinder your mind from being taken up about the soul matters which I shall endeavour set before you.
Mor. Sir, as for the pain that my body must presently feel, I matter it not: I know what pe is; but what shall I do for my poor soul? I'm terrified with the wrath of God; this, this terri me; hell terrifies me. I should not mind my death, if it were not for that.
Min. Now, the Lord help me to deal faithfully with you, and the Lord help you to receive wb he shall enable me to offer unto you. Mark what I say: you were born among the enemies God; you were born with a soul as full of enmity against God as a toad is full of poison. Y have lived now, how many years?
Mor. I think about thirty.
in. And all these thirty years have you been sinning against the Holy God. Ever since you * how to do any thing, you have every day been guilty of innumerable sins; you deserve the dfal wrath and curse of the infinite God. But God has brought you here, to a place where you enjoy'd the means of grace. And here you have added unto your old sins most fearful iniqui
you have been such a matchless, prodigious transgressor, that you are now to die by the stroke viljastice; to die before your time, for being wicked overmuch. There is hardly any sort of jedness which you have not wallow'd in. That sin particularly which you are now to die for, nost monstrous crime. I can't possibly describe or declare the sins whereby you have made seis an astonishing example of impiety and punishment. la. O, sir, I have been a hellish sinner. I am sorry for what I have been. lin. Sorry, you say: well, tell me which of all your sins you are now most sorry for--which nost heavy? far. I hope I am sorry for all my sins, but I must especially bewail my neglect of the nieans of t. On Sabbath days I us’d to lie at home, or be ill employ'd elsewhere, when I should have
at church. This has undone me! lia. And let me seriously tell you, your despising of Christ is a most dreadful sin indeed. You
for whole years together had the call of Jesus Christ to seek an interest in him; and you d now give all the world for that interest, but you would take no notice of him. The Jews d put him to a worse death than yours will be this afternoon, and by your contempt of Christ, bave said, the Jews did well to do so. How justly might he now laugh at your calamity ? for these sins of yours, besides the direful woes and plagues that have already come upon you, are now expos'd unto the vengeance of eternal fire. You are in danger of being now quickly into those exquisite amazing torments; in comparison of which, the anguishes which your body did feel, or shall feel before night, or can ever feel, are just nothing at all: and these dolorous ents are such as never have an end. As many sands as could lie between this earth and the in Heaven, would not be near so many as the ages, the endless ages of these torments. bor. But is there not mercy for me in Christ? in. Yes; and it is a wonderful thing, that I have now further to tell you. Mind, I entreat you. son of God is become the son of man; the Lord Jesus Christ is both God and man in one perand he is both sufficiently able and willing also to be your Saviour. He lived a most righteous and this was, that such as you and I might be able to say before God, Lord, accept of me, as had lived righteously. He died at length a most cursed death; and this was, that we might ble to say unto God, Lord, let me not die for sin, since thy son died in my room. This glorious emer is now in the highest heaven, pleading with God for the salvation of his chosen ones. se pours out his spirit continually upon them that do believe on him: might you then be enaby his grace to carry your poor, guilty, condemn'd, enslav’d, ignorant soul unto Jesus Christ, Sambly pul your trust in him for deliverance from the whole bad state which you are brought
O then his voice is to you the same that way to the penitent thief, this day shalt thou be with 9 Paradise. fr. Oh! that I might be so! Sir, I would hear more of these things: I think I can't better fit f for my death, than by hearkening to these things. 12. Attend then: the never dying spirit that lodges within you, must now within a few minutes ar before the tribunal of the great God. 'In what, or in whose righteousnese will you then u? Will you have this to be your plea, “ Lord, I experienc'd many good motions and desires
soul, and many sorrows for my sin before I dy'd ?" or, will you expect to have no other plea his, “ Lord I am vile, but thy Son is a surety for the worst of sinners that believe on him; for his alone have MERCY on me?" er. I thank God for what he has wrought in my soul. 14. Bat be very careful about this matter: if you build on your own good affections instead of : Christ, the only rock, if you think they shall recommend you to God, he that made you, will have mercy on you. L. I would be cloathed with the righteousness of Jesus Christ. lin. But you can't sincerely desire that Christ should justifie you, if you don't also desire that he hd sanctifie you: those two always go together. Is every lust that has hitherto had possession our heart become so loathsome to you, that it would fill your soul with joy to hear Jesus Christ
say, “ I will subdue those iniquities of thine; I will make an holy, an heavenly, a spiritually minde person of thee.”
Mor. I would not sin against God any more.
Min. But I must deal plainly with you: you have made it sadly suspicious that your repentance not yet as it ought to be. When men truly and thoroughly repent of sin, they use to be in a spec manner watchful against that sin which has been their chief sin ; one of your principal sins, whi has indeed brought you to the death of a murderer, is passion, unmortify'd and outragious passio ateness: now, I have been this day inform’d, that no longer since than the last night, upon sok dissatisfaction about the place which the authority hath order'd you by and by to be bury'd in, y did express yourself with a most unruly passionateness.
Mor. Sir, I confess it, and I was quickly sorry for it, though for the present I was too much turb’d: 'twas my folly to be so careful about the place where my body should be laid, when I precious soul was in such a condition.
Min. Truly, you have cause to mourn for it. Secure the welfare of your soul, and this (now) pi ion’d, hang’d, vile body of yours will shortly be rais’d unto glory, glory for evermore. And let i put you in mind of one thing more; I doubt not you have not yet laid aside your unjust grude against the persons concern'd in your conviction and condemnation: you have no cause to compl of them: and you are not fit to pray, much less are you fil to die, till you heartily wish them well as your own soul: if you die malicious, you die miserable.
Mor. I heartily wish them all well; I bear ill-will to none. What a lamentable thing is th Ah, this is that which has brought me hither!
Min. What do you mean?
Mor. I over-heard a man mocking and scoffing at me when I stumbled just now: he does et ill. I have done so myself. I have mock'd and scoff'd like that man, and see what it hath brouge me to: he may come to the like.
Min. The Lord forgive that foolish hard-hearted creature. But be not too much disturb'd.
Mor. Yonder! I am now come in sight of the place where I must immediately end my da; Oh, what a huge multitude of people is come together on this occasion. O Lord, O Lord! I por thee to make my death profitable to all this multitude of people, that they may not sin against th as I have done.
Min. Amen, Amen, ten thousand times; the Lord God Almighty say Amen to this prayer yours! It would indeed be an excellent thing, if you would now come to receive your death, w some satisfaction of soul in this thought, that much glory is like to come to God hy it: I am ver perswaded God intends to do good to many souls by means of your execution. This is a grea honour than you are worthy of.
[After the discourse had been intermitted about a minute or two reason of the mirey way.]
Mor. I beseech you, sir, speak to me. Do me all the good you can: my time grows very sho your discourse fits me for my death more than any thing.
Min. I am sorry so small a thing as a plashy street should make me lose one minute of ? more than ordinary precious time; a few puces more bring you to the place which you bave n in your eye, from whence you shall not come back alive. Do you find yourself afraid to die the
Mor. Sir, if it were not for the condition that my soul must by and by be in, I should not fear death at all; but I have a little comfort from some of God's promises about that.
Min. And what shall I now say? These are among the last words that I can have liberty leave with you. Poor man! thou art now going to knock at the door of heaven, and to beg : cry, “Lord, Lord, open to me!" The only way for thee to speed, is to open the door of thy o soul now unto the Lord Jesus Christ. Do this, and thou shalt undoubtedly be admitted into ? glories of his heavenly kingdom: you shall fare as well as Manasseh did before you; leave! undone, and there is nothing remains for you but the “worm which dieth not and the fire wb never shall be quench'd."
Mor. Sir, shew me then again what I have to do.
Min. The voice, the sweet voice of the Lord Jesus Christ (who was once hang'd on a tree, take away the sling and curse of even such a death as yours) unto all that close with him, his ht
reely voice now is, “O that I and my saving work might be entertained, kindly entreated, in that poo; perishing soul of thine!" Are you willing? Jler. I hope I am.
Min. His voice further is, “ If I am lodg'd in thy soul, I'll sprinkle my blood upon it; and on my receunt thou shalt find favour with God." Do you consent to this?
Mar. This I want.
Min. But this is not all that he saith; his voice further is, “If I come into thy soul, I will change #; I will make all sin bitter to it; I will make it an holy, heavenly soul.” Do you value this above the proffers of all the world?
Mar. I think I do. And now, sir, I must go no further. Look here--what a solemn sight is thes! Here lies the coffin wbich this body of mine must presently be laid in. I thank you, dear , for what you have already done for me. Min. When you are gone up this ladder, my last service with you before you are gone off will be to pray with you; but I would here take my leave of you. Oh, that I might meet you at the right band of the Lord Jesus Christ in the last day! Farewel, poor heart, fare thee well. The Frerlasting arms receive thee! the Lord Jesus, the merciful Saviour of souls, take possession of thy spirit for himself! The great God, who is a great forgiver, grant thee repentance unto life; and Florite himself in the salvation of such a wounded soul us thine forever! With him, and with his free, rich, marvellous, infinite grace, I leave you.—Farewel.
Being arrived unto the place of execution, his last speech upon the ladder, then taken in short hand, was that which is here inserted:
*I pray God that I may be a warning to you all, and that I may be the last that ever shall safer after this manner. In the fear of God I warn you to have a care of taking the Lord's one in vain. Mind, and have a care of that sin of drunkenness: for that sin leads to all mariner of sins and wickedness: (mind, and have a care of breaking the sixth commandment, where it is said, “Thou shalt do no murther,') for when a man is in drink, he is ready to commit all manner of sin, till he fill up the cup of the wrath of God, as I have done by committing et sin of murder.
“I beg of God, as I am a dying man, and to appear before the Lord within a few minutes, bazat you may take notice of what I say to you. Have a care of drunkenness, and ill company, ad mind all good instruction; and don't turn your back upon the word of God, as I have dune. When I have been at meeting, I have gone out of the meeting-house to commit sin, sad to please the lusts of my flesh. Don't make a mock at any poor object of pity: but bless God that he has not left you as he has justly done me, to commit that horrid sin of murder.
"Another thing that I have to say to you is, to have a care of that house where that wickohess was committed, and where I have been partly ruin'd by. But here I am, and know 1st what will become of my poor soul, which is within a few moments of eternity. I have sorder'd a poor man, who had but little time to repent, and I know not what has become ci his poor soul. O, that I may make use of this opportunity that I have! O, that I may bake improvement of this little, little time, before I go hence and be no more! O, let all ord what I am saying, now I am going out of this world! O, take warning by me, and beg of God to keep you from this sin, which has been
His last words were, “O Lord receive my spirit! I come unto thee, O lord-I come unto thee, O Lord-I come, I come, I come.
(VIII.) ONE Hugh Stone, upon a quarrel between himself and his wife, about selling a piece of land, having some words, as they were walking together on a certain evening, very barbarously reach'd a stroke at er throat, with a sharp knife; and by that one stroke fetch'd away the