Imágenes de páginas

struction, and art thou not afraid? Dost thou see a Crucified Jefus stretching forth his Arms to embrace thee, and doft thou feel no warmth, no heat, no zeal, no affection ? Dost thou see the great burning Lake before thee, and dort not thou quake and tremble? Dost thou see the Revenger of Blood upon thy heels, and wilt not thou run into the City of Refuge? Dost thou see the Angel of the Lord preparing to rain down Fire and Brimstone on thee, and wilt thou not save thy self in Zoar ? Why shouldst thou stay till the Door of Grace be (but? Why shouldlt thou carry till all the Oyl in thy Lamp be spent ? Why shouldlt thou fold thy Arms till Death takes the Fort, and leaves thee in no poffi. bility of Mercy > Why shouldst thou stand still, till the Enemy lays thy Conscience waste? Why shouldst thou sleep, till all the Field be overrun with Weeds? Why Ihouldst thou be idle till the Eleventh hour is past ? Run, run for thy life; There is danger near ; The Enemy is at hand; The Fort is like to be taken ; The Cittadel is almost lost ; Thou art almost at the last gasp: Look up, Dost not thou see thy Saviour fly down from Heaven to lay hold of thee, and wilt not thou make haste and meet him? Behold the Bridegroom comes, and wilt not thou bid him welcome? Dost not thou see how the Mar. tyrs, how the Primitive Christians fly to Heaven, and wilt thou stay behind ? Dort not thou see, how contented they are, under Tryals of cruel Mockings and Scourgings, yea moreover


of Bonds and Imprisopments? Doft not thou see, how they refuse not to be stoned, to be fawn asunder, to be tempted, to be llain with the Sword, and all that they may obtain a better Resurrection? Dost not thou see how they croud in at the Gate, and wilt thou not see what they are doing there? Dost thou think they were all out of their wirs, to break thus resolutely through all clogs and obstacles into Glory? If they were not wise men, why do we celebrate their memories ? and if they were wise, wilt not thou learn wisdom of them? If they were Fools, why do we commend them? Why do we write Panegyricks to their Names? Why do we admire them? Why do we wilh, that we might be as happy as they ? if they were not, why wilt thou not be a Follower of them? Dost thou see them concern'd, and canst thou stand like a Statue? Dost thou fee with what life, and zeal they fall on, and art thou senlless? Dort thou see them busie and inquisitive, and ađive about God's Kingdom, and can they inSpire no industry into thee? Doft thou see how they prize and value the incorruptible Crown, and is all too little to perswade thee into a practical esteem of it? What hinders thee? What is it stops thy progress? Art thou still in love with that which will undo thee? Why should Father and Mother, Wife and Children, Brethren and Sisters, Lands and Houses, make thee lose a Crown? Hath God's favour no temptation ? Is there no charm in his love? Hath Heaven

. no

no beauty? If thou must be miserable , hadit thou not better be so here, than hereafter? Shall the present food flatter thee into eternal hunger? And because the Tree is pleasant to the eye, wilt thou prepare for being expelld out of Paradise for ever? Will a few pleasant Cups counterballance thy everlasting Thirst? Wilt thou venture an everlasting Storm, for a present Calm and run the bazard of an endlets Tempest, for a few months Recreation ? Behold how Moses runs away from the World to be saved, and wilt thou plunge thy self into that dangerous Sea ? Bebold how Élijab, Elisha, and si John the Baptist retire into the Wilderness, that their eyes may not behold these sublunary vanities, and dost thou long to be in the Croyd which wiser men desire to be rid of? Good Lord ! Whom do I intend to please, God or the Devil? God I cannot please by it, for he calls to me, Come out from among them, my people, and be ge feparate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you, and shall I gratifie the Devil then ? O Wretch that I am! the Devil was ne. ver crucified for me, never spilt one drop of bloud for me, never endured agonies for me; he never wore a Crown of Thorns for me, he never tasted of the Thameful death of the Cross for me, and shall I fly into his arms? How of ten hath he disappointed me in my hopes and desires, and shall I fawn upon the Enemy? Lay force upon his Kingdom of darkness, in despight of all the Bars and Bolts, and Guards which


the great King of Heaven puts between me and damnation ? I have been abused and cheated by fin there many years, and shall I be cheated still? · Does not my blood rise at the very thoughts of it? Ithat will not be cheated in my Trade or Dealings with men, shall I suffer my self to be impos'd upon by a lying Devil? And when I study how to be revenged on him, that hath sold me'a Pebble for a Pearl, a Bristol-Stone for a Diamond, and endeavour to prevent the like deception for the time to come; Iball i, in these great concerns of my Soul, where the Cheat is so apparent, where to discover it, I need do no more but open my eyes, where God and his holy Angels, and all the Ministers of the Gospel assure me of the fallacy, where the Cheat is of that dangerous consequence too, and borders upon eternal damnation ; shall I be so difgenerous, so base, low-spirited, as to suffer my self to be thus grolly abused and deceived? A Child will not he cheated of his Puppets, a Beast will not be cheated of his Meat, a Dog will not be cheated of his Bone, and shall I alone be the sport of Devils ? !? A Creature to whom God hath given Dominion over the Fish of the Sea, and over the Fowls of the Air, and over every thing that moveth upon the Earth ? O Monster! Why so cruel to my own Soul ? Why so barbarous to my immortal part? Why

so inhumane to my spiritual interest? Why so 'mad to run into the fire? Why such an Enemy. to my own good ? Have not I Enemies enough,


but I must make my self my greatest Foe? Shall I joyn with that roaring Lyon, and teach him how to devour me? Shall I give him advantages against my self, first let him deceive me, and then laugh at me? first let him seduce me into the Net, and then punish me for being taken? I believe my Children, if they tell me, that they have seen fuch a house on fire; and believe my Neighbours, if they assure me there are Thieves broke into my house ; and believe a Physician, who affirms, That such a Powder or Herb is perfect Poyron ; and shall not I believe that God, who hath prepard and fore-ordaind these everlasting burnings I hear and read of, and mụst needs know the terrour of them? Shall not I believe him, when he tells me, and protests upon the word of a God, that if I do not betake my self betimes to another course of Life, I shall assuredly fall a Prey to those endless burnings? Say not, false heart, how shall I be sure God hath said so. Either profess thy self no Christian, or confess it. Haft thou lived so long under the sound of the Gospel, and dar'st thou harbour such a thought ? I believe a Servant, that tells me, That such a Man is like to run away with the Goods I have intrusted him wich; and I believe a Stranger, that gives me warning not to be familiar with a

sort of Persons in the Countrey I am going to; and I believe a Traveller, that tells me, that in such an Illand there are Mountains of Fire, and Mines of Sulphur burning conti

nually ;

« AnteriorContinuar »