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be no other than such, why do we not demean ourselves accordingly?

1. If then we be but sojourners, and that in a strange na 102, here must be an empayporúvn, an “ UNMEDDLINGNESS” with the worldly concernments. Not that we should refrain from managing the atairs of this present life; without which, it were no living for us upon earth. There is a di Terence, betwixt cok uztz ani πραίματεία, ,

necessary business” and “ unnecessary distractions" A man, that sojourns abroad in a strange country, finds himself no way interested in their designs and proceedings. What cares he, who rises or falls at their Court? who is in favour, and who in disgrace? what ordinances or laws are made, and what are repeal. ed ? He


still to himself, as our Saviour said to Peter, Quid ad te? What is that to thee? Thus doth the Christian here: he must use the world, as if he used it not: he must pass through the affairs of this life, without being entangled in them; as remember. ing, who and where he is; that he is but a sojourner here.

2. Here niust be a LIGHT ADDRESS. No man, that goes to s journ in a strange country, will carry his lumber along with him; but leaves all his houshold stuff at home: no; he will not so much as carry his stock of money or jewels with him, as knowing he may meet with dangers of thieves and robbers in the way, but makes over his money by exchange, to receive it where he is going. Ye Rich Men cannot think to carry your pelf with you into heaven : no; it were well, if you could get in yourselves, without that cumberous load: it may keep you out ; ye cannot carry it in. If


safe and sure ways, make over your stock by exchange: that is, as our Saviour tells you, Make you friends of the unrighteous Mammon, that when ye go hence they muy receive you into everlasting habitations. Those riches, which so lomon saith have wings, and therefore may fly up, and, being well used, may help to carry up your souls towards heaven ; if you clip their wings, may prove as clogs to weigh your souls down to hell. Dispose of them, therefore, where you may be sure to find them with a happy advantage to yourselves; 1 Timothy vi. 18, 19. and do not think to keep them süll in your hands; remembering that you are but sojourners here.

3. "If ye be but strangers and sojourners here, you must MAKE ACCOUNT OF NO OTHER THAN HARD USAGE IN THE WORLD. It is the just epithet of the world, which Julius Scaliger gives unjustly to London, Torva peregrinis; but we cannot add that, which follows, sed non et inhospita : for, surely, there is nothing to be expected here, but unkind and churlish entertainment. We know that God still puts together the Stranger, the Widow, and the Orphan : these are every where most exposed to wrong; as men are still apt to climb over the hedge, where it is lowest. The good shunamite, when the prophet ofered her the favour to speak to the king for her, could say, I dwell amongst my own people ; intimating, that, while she dwelt at home amongst her good neighbours, she had no need of a friend at Court. But, when she had been abroad, so

journing in the land of the Philistines; and, in her absence, was stripped of her house and land; she is fain to come with an humble petition in her hand, suing to be righted against the injurious usurpation of her cruel oppressor; 2 Kings viii. Do we, therefore, find harsh usage at the hands of the worlů ? Are we spitefully intreated by unjust men, our repatation blemished, our profession sla udered, o ir goods plundered, our estates causelessly impaired, our bodies imprisoned, and all inlignities cast upon us and ours? let us beihink ourselves, where and what we are; strangers and sojourners here: a 'd, let us make no rechoniig to fare any otherwise, while we sojourn in this vale of tears.

4. If we be stringers and pilg.ims here, we cannot but have a GOOD MIND HOMEWA{D. It is natu al to us all, to be deariy affected to our home: and, though the place where we sojourn be handsomer and more commodious than our own; yet we are ready to say, “ Home is bomey, and our heart is there, though our bodies be away.” And this is a difference, betwixt a banished man, and a voluntary traveller. The exiled man bath none but displeasing thoughts for his native country ; would fain forget it; and is apt, as we have had too much proof, to devise plots against it: whereas, the voluntary traveller thinks the time long, till he may enjoy his long desired home; and thinks himself happy, that he may see the smoke of his own chimney: and, if our lot be fallen upon a stony and barren Ithaca, yet it is not all the glorious promises of a Ca ypso can with Iraw us from desiring a speedy return to it. Belove, we know we are strangers here : our home is above. There is our Father's house ; in which there are many mansions, and all glorious. If this earth had as many contentments in it, as it hath miseries and vexations; yet it could not compare with that region of blessedness, which is our only home. Oh then, if we believe ourselves to have a true right to that abiding city, to that city which hath foundations where our Father dwells, why do we not long to be possessed of those glorious, and everiasting habitations? We find it too true, which the Apostle says, That while we are present in the flesh we are absent from the Lord; 2 Cor. v. 6. Why are we not heartily desirous to change these houses of clay, for that house not made with hands eternal in the heavens? We may please ourselves in formalities; but I must tell you, it is no good sign, if we be loth to go home to our Father's house.

Methinks, this word here should be emphatical. Indeed it is not in the original text, but it is both sufficiently implied, and would seem to intimate a kind of comparison between the place of our sojourning and the place of our home. Here, is trouble and toil; there, is rest : here, is disorder and sin; there, perfection of order and holiness : here, we live with men, yea beasts, yea, if, on some hands, I should say with incarnate devils, I should not be uncharitable; there, with God and his blessed angels, and the souls of righteous men made perfect: here, are continual changes and successions of sorrow; there, an eternity of unintermitted and unconceivable joys. Oh then, how can we choose but say with David, As the hart panieth after the water-brooks, so doth my soul pant after thee, O Goi? Psalm xlii. 1: and, with the Chosen Vessel, I desire to depart hence, and to be with Chrisi ? Phil. i. 23. This, for our so ourning here.

II. Nos, for the TIME of our sojourning.

Time is the common measure of all things; the universal metwand of the Almighty ; Eccl. iji. I. There is a time for all things, saith wise Solomon ; and but a time : for the motions of time are quick and irrevocable. Ye cannot think of it but with wings. It is but a short word, a monosyllable; yet, while we are speaking of it, it is gone.

As for the Time of our sojourning, Moses reckons it by years; Job, by months, and those of vanity; old Jacob and David, by days: the Apostle shuts it up closer; and calls the very age of the world, hora novissima, the last hour : all imply a quickness of passage.

It is a true observation of Seneca : Velocilas temporis, saith he, “ The quick speed of time is best discerned, when we look at it past and gone.” and this I can confirm to you by experience. It hath pleased the Providence of my God so to contrive it, that this day, this very morning, fourscore years ago, I was born into the world. “ A great time since,” ye are ready to say: and so indeed it seems to you, that look at it forward ; but to me, that look at it as past, it seems so short that it is gone like a tale that is told, or a dream by night, and looks but like yesterday. It can be no offence for me to say, that many of you,

who hear me this day, are not like to see so many suns walk over your heads, as I have done. Yea, what speak I of this? There is not one of us, that can assure hiinself of his continuance here one day: We are all tenants at will; and, for ought we know, may be turned out of these clay cottages at an hour's warning. "Oh then, what should we do, but, as wise farmers, who know the time of their lease is expiring and cannot be renewed, carefully and seasonably provide ourselves of a surer and more during tenure?

I remember our witty countryman Bromiard, tells us of a lord in his time, that had a fool in his house; as many great men in those days had, for their pleasure : to whom this ford gave a sta:'; and charged him to keep it, till he should meet with one that were more fool than himself, and, if he met with such a one, to deliver it over to him. Not many years after, this lord fell sick; and indeed was sick unto death. His fool came to see him; and was told, by his sick lord, that he must now shortly leave him. “ And whither wilt thou go ?" said the fool. “ Into another world,” said his lord. “ And when wilt thou come again? within a month?" « No.”

“ Within a year?” “ No." 66 When then?” “ Never." “ Never ? and what provision bast thou made for thy entertainment there, whither thoa goest?” “ None at all." “No!" said the fool, “ none at all? Here, take my staff. Art thou going away for ever; and hast taken no order nor care how thou shalt speed in

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that other world, whence thou shalt never return? take my staff; for I am not guilty of any such folly as this.”

And, indeed, there cannot be a greater folly, or madness rather, than to be so wholy tahen up with an eager regard of these earthly vanities, which we cannot hold; as to utterly neglect the care of that eternity, which we can never forego. And, consider well of it, upon this moment of our life depends that eternity, either way.

My Dear Brethren, it is a great way to heaven; and we have but a little time to get thither. God says to us, as the angel said to Elijah, Up, for thou hast a great journey to go : and if, as I fear, we have loitered in the way, and trified away any part of the time in vain impertinencies, we have so much more need to gird up our loins, and to hasten our pace. Our hearts, our false hearts are ready, like the Levite's servant, to show us the world; and to say, as he did of Jebus, Come, I pray you, let us turn into the city of the Jebusiles, and lodge there : Oh, let us have his master's resolute answer ready in our mouths; Ile will not turn aside into a city of strangers, neither will we leave, till we have got the gates of God's city upon our backs; Judges xix. 11, 12.

Time is that, whereof many of us are wont to be too prodigal. We take care how to be rid of it; and, if we cannot otherwise, we cast it away : and this we call Pass-time. Wherein we do dangerously mistake ourselves; and must know, that time is, as the first, so one of the most precious things that are: insomuch as there are but two things, which we are charged to redeem, Time and Truth

I find that, in our old Saxon language, a Gentleman was called an Idle-man: perhaps, because those, who are born to fair estates, are free from those toils and hard labours, which others are forced to undergo. I wish the name were not too proper to over-many in these days; wherein it is commonly seen, that those of the better rank, who are born to a fair inheritance, so carry themselves, as if they thought themselves privileged to do nothing, and made for mere disport and pleasure. But, alas ! can they hope, that the Great God, when he shall call them to give account of the dispensation of their time and estate, will take this for a good reckoning: Item; So many hours spent in dressing and trimming; so many, in idle visitings'; so many, in gaming; so many, in hunting and hawking; so many, in the playhouse; so many, in the tavern; so many, in vain chat; so many, in wanton dalliance? No; no; my Dear Brethren: our hearts cannot but tell us, how ill an audit we shall make, upon such a woeful computation ; and how sure we are to hear of a Serve nequam, Thou evil servant, and unfaithful ; and to feel a retribution accordingly:

Let us, therefore, in the fear of God be exhorted to recollect ourselves; and, since we find ourselves guilty of the sinful mispense of our good hours, let us, while we have space, obtain of ourselves to be careful of redeeming that precious time we have lost. As the widow of Sarepta, when she had but a little oil left

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in her cruse, and a little meal in her barrel, was careful of spending that to the best advantage: so let us, considering that we have but a little sand left in our glass, a short remainder of our mortal life, be sure to employ it unto the best profit of our souls; so as every of our hours may carry up with it a happy testimony of our gainful improvement: that so, when our day cometh, we may change our time for eternity; the time of our sojourning, for the eternity of glory and blessedness.

Thus much for the Time of our sojourning.

III. Now, as for the PASSAGE of this time, I shall spare any further discourse of it: though this is a matter well worthy of our thoughts. And, indeed, we, that live within the smoke of the city, have our ears so continually inured to the noise of passingbells, that it is a wonder we can think of any thing but our passing away, together with our time : unless it be with us, as with those that dweil near the cataract of Nilus, whom the continual noise of that loud waterfail is said to make deaf.

But, since we are fallen upon the mention of this subject, gire leave, I beseech you, to a word of not unseasonable digression. I have noted it to be the fashion here amongst you, that, when a neighbour dies, all his friends, in several parishes, set forth their bells, to g ve a general notice of his departure. I do not dislike the practice: it is an act of much civility, and fair respect to the deceased. And, if the death of God's Saints be, as it is, precious in his sight, there is great reason it should be so in ours; and therefore well worthy of a public notification. But, let me tell you, that, in other well-ordered places where I have lived, it is yet a more commendable fashion, that, when a sick neighbour is drawing towards his end, the bell is toiled, to give notice of his dying condition : that all within hearing may be thereupon moved, to pour out their fervent prayers for the good of that departing soul; suing for mercy and forgiveness, and a clean passage of it to the approaching glory. If there be civility and humanity in the former course, there is more charity and piety in this. But this, by the way.

This term of our passage, is but an English expression: the original word is avaspáonte ; which signifies rather our conversing.

IV. Passing this, therefore, let us meditate upon the Modification of this passage of our time; which it is said must be in FEAR.

Fear is an unwelcome and unpleasing word; and the thing more: for we commonly say, That only evil is the object of fear; and, That whom we fear we hate. And, perhaps, the authors and abettors of the uncomfo table doctrine of diffidence and uncer. tainty of resolution in the spiritual estate of our souls, would be glad of such an overture for the maintenance of those disheartening positions, which they have broached unto the world to this purpose: but their mouths are soon stopped, with the addition of the name of a Father; which is abundantly sufficient to sweeten this harsh sound of fear.

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