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had not been in the ship with him, the gift had not extended to them. As soon as thy Son was come out of the ship, immediately there met him, out of the tombs, a man with an unclean spirit, and no man could hold him, no not with chains12. Thy Son needed no use of means; yet there we apprehend the danger to us, if we leave the ship, the means, in this case the physician. But as they are ships to us in those seas, so is there a ship to them too in which they are to stay. Give me leave, O my God, to assist myself with such a construction of these words of thy servant Paul to the centurion, when the mariners would have left the ship, Except these abide in the ship, you cannot be safe,3 .. except they who are our ships, the physicians, abide in that which is theirs, and our ship, the truth, and the sincere and religious worship of thee and thy gospel, we cannot promise ourselves so good safety; for though we have our ship, the physician, he hath not his ship, religion; and means are not means but in their concatenation, as they depend and are chained together. The ships are great, says thy apostle, but a helm turns them"; the men are learned, but their religion turns their labours to good, and therefore it was a heavy curse when the third part of the ships perishedu: it is a heavy case where either all religion, or true religion, should forsake many of these ships whom thou hast sent to convey us over these seas. But, O my God, my God, since I have my ship and they theirs, I have them and they have thee, why are we yet no nearer land? As soon as thy Son's disciples had taken him into the ship, immediately the ship was at the land whither they went16. Why have not they and I this dispatch? Every thing is immediately done, which is done when thou wouldst have it done. Thy purpose terminates every action, and what was done before that is undone yet. Shall that slacken my hope? thy prophet from thee hath forbidden it. It is good that a man should both hope, and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord11. Thou puttest off many judgments till the last day, and many pass this life without any; and shall not I endure the putting off thy mercy for a day? And yet, O my God, thou puttest me not to that, for the assurance of future mercy is present mercy. But what is my assurance now? what is my seal? It is but a cloud; that which my physicians call a cloud, in that which gives them their indication. But a cloud? Thy great seal to all the world, the rainbow, that secured the world for ever from drowning, was but a reflection upon a cloud. A cloud itself was a pillar which guided the church18, and the glory of God not only was, but appeared in a cloud19. Let me return, O my God, to the consideration of thy servant Elijah's proceeding in a time of desperate drought20; he bids them look towards the sea; they look, and see nothing. He bids them again and again seven times; and at the seventh time they saw a little cloud rising out of the sea, and presently they had their desire of rain. Seven days, O my God, have we looked for this cloud, and now we have it; none of thy indications are frivolous, thou makest thy signs seals, and thy seals effects, and thy effects consolation and restitution, wheresoever thou mayst receive glory by that way.
"Mark, v. 2, 3. "Acts, xxvii. 31. "James, iii. 4.
15 Rev. viii. 9. ,6 John, vi. 21.
O ETERNAL and most gracious God, who though thou passedst over infinite millions of generations, before thou earnest to a creation of this world, yet when thou beganst, didst never intermit that work, but continued day to day, till thou hadst perfected all the work, and deposed it in the hands and rest of a sabbath, though thou have been pleased to glorify thyself in a long exercise of my patience, with an expectation of thy declaration of thyself in this my sickness, yet since thou hast now of thy goodness afforded that which affords us some hope, if that be still the way of thy glory, proceed in that way, and perfect that work, and establish me in a sabbath and rest in thee, by this thy seal of bodily restitution. Thy priests came up to thee by steps in the temple; thy angels came down to Jacob by steps upon the ladder; we find no stair by which thou thyself earnest to Adam in paradise, nor to Sodom in thine anger; for thou, and thou only, art able to do all at once. But O Lord, I am not weary of thy pace, nor weary of mine own patience. I provoke thee not with a prayer, not with a wish, not with a hope, to more haste than consists with thy purpose, nor look that any other thing should have entered into thy purpose, but thy glory. To hear thy steps coming towards me is the same comfort as to see thy face present with me; whether thou do the work of a thousand years in a day, or extend the work of a day to a thousand years, as long as thou workest, it is light and comfort. Heaven itself is but an extension of the same joy; and an extension of this mercy, to proceed at thy leisure, in the way of restitution, is a manifestation of heaven to me here upon earth. From that people to whom thou appearedst in signs and in types, the Jews, thou art departed, because they trusted in them; but from thy church, to whom thou hast appeared in thyself, in thy Son, thou wilt never depart, because we cannot trust too much in him. Though thou have afforded me these signs of restitution, yet if I confide in them, and begin to say, all was but a natural accident, and nature begins to discharge herself, and she will perfect the whole work, my hope shall vanish because it is not in thee. If thou shouldst take thy hand utterly from me, and have nothing to do with me, nature alone were able to destroy me; but if thou withdraw thy helping hand, alas, how frivolous are the helps of nature, how impotent the assistances of art! As therefore the morning dew is a pawn of the evening fatness, so, O Lord, let this day's comfort be the earnest of to-morrow's, so far as may conform me entirely to thee, to what end, and by what way soever thy mercy have appointed me.
XX. Id Agunt.
Upon these Indications of digested Matter, they proceed to purge.
THOUGH counsel seem rather to consist of spiritual parts than action, yet action is the spirit and the soul of counsel. Counsels are not always determined in resolutions; we cannot always say, this was concluded; actions are always determined in effects ; we can say, this was done. Then have laws their reverence and their majesty, when we see the judge upon the bench executing them. Then have counsels of war their impressions and their operations, when we see the seal of an army set to them. It was an ancient way of celebrating the memory of such as deserved well of the state, to afford them that kind of statuary representation, which was then called Hermes, which was the head and shoulders of a man standing upon a cube, but those shoulders without arms and hands. Altogether it figured a constant supporter of the state, by his counsel; but in this hieroglyphic, which they made without hands, they pass their consideration no farther but that the counsellor should be without hands, so far as not to reach out his hand to foreign temptations of bribes, in matters of counsel, and that it was not necessary that the head should employ his own hand; that the same men should serve in the execution which assisted in the counsel; but that there should not belong hands to every head, action to every counsel, was never intended so much as in figure and representation. For as matrimony is scarce to be called matrimony, where there is a resolution against the fruits of matrimony, against the having of children1, so counsels are not counsels, but illusions, where there is from the beginning no purpose to execute the determinations of those counsels. The arts and sciences are most properly referred to the head; that is their proper element and sphere; but yet the art of proving, logic, and the art of persuading, rhetoric, are deduced to the hand, and that expressed by a hand contracted into a fist, and this by a hand enlarged and expanded; and evermore the power of man, and the power of God himself, is expressed so, All things are in his hand; neither is God so often presented to us, by names that carry our consideration upon counsel, as upon execution of counsel; he oftener is called the Lord of Hosts than by all other names, that may be referred to the other signification. Hereby therefore we take into our meditation the slippery condition of man, whose happiness in any kind, the defect of any one thing conducing to