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contemners of the gospel, are acceptable to God, and blame the charitable as too cold, when they little know what spirit it is that raiseth that storm in them, and how unlike, and unacceptable it is to Christ. Were you as zealous to serve all others in love, and to stoop to their feet for their salvation, and to become all things lawful to all men, that you may win some, , this saving zeal would be pleasing to your Lord, who comes to do the work of a physician, and not of the soldier, to save, and not to destroy, and therefore most approves of those that serve him most diligently in his saving work.

7. Lastly, consider, your passions and evil speakings will but increase your suffering, and make it seem just, if otherwise it were unjust. If you are not meek, you have not the promise of inheriting the earth. (Matt. v. 5.) If you honour not your parents or superiors, you have not the promise that your “ days shall be long in the land.” And your evil speaking will make men conclude that you would do evil if you could and durst; as it is said to be Zoilus’s answer, when he was asked why he spoke evil of Plato, and such worthy men, “Quoniam malum facere cum veliin non possum-Because I would do them hurt and cannot.” Give not occasion for such a charge.

Finally, “Be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another : love as brethren : be pitiful : be courteous : not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing; but, contrariwise, blessing, knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing; for he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil.” (1 Peter iii. 8—11.) “But if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, nor be troubled.” (ver. 14.)

But I suppose you will here say, 'Is it not lawful to call a spade a spade? Is not a wo against them that call evil good? May not a man speak of the hurtful crimes of others?' I answer, first, Yes, when, as a magistrate, a minister, or a brother, you have just cause to tell them of it lovingly, though plainly, to their faces, in order to their recovery: secondly, and when you have a just call to speak of it to others, either in seeking justice, or in charity and mercy, for the preservation of those that else will be more hurt by the silencing of men's faults, than you do hurt by mentioning thein.

But, 1. You may not slander men as guilty of what indeed they are not.

2. You may not make men's faults seem worse than they are,

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3. You must endeavour the good of the person as much as you can, while you blame the sin.

4. You must not mention men's faults without a call; unless the good of himself or others do require it.

5. You must not do it with a revengeful mind, for personal injuries.

6. You must manifest love and compassion in all.

7. You must difference between reigning sins, and human frailties ; and between a course of sin and an unusual fall; and between a sin repented of, and not repented of; and must censure but as you find God censure in his word.

8. You must be more ready to speak of the good that is in the same men as you have a call, than of the evil; and not maliciously stick only in the galled place.

9. Let it be as far as may be to his face.

10. Let it be according to the common rule of equity. Do as you would be done by. Not measuring your duty to others, by a corrupt impatience of bearing such yourselves ; but speaking nothing for matter or manner to another, which you would think unmeet to be spoken to you, if

you

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case.

11. And especially be tender of the honour of superiors, yea, though they were evil, and do you wrong.

12. And foresee the consequence, whether your words are not like to do more hurt than good.

And if still you think that sufferings will justify reviling, contumelious complaints, consider these two causes of your mistake.

1. You make a great matter of a little one. As there is not so great good in the prosperity of the flesh, as worldlings think; so neither is there so great evil in the loss of it; what great harm is poverty, imprisonment, reproach, or death? Nay, you have a promise that all shall work together for your good. (Rom. viii. 28.)

2. You make a strange matter of that which is the ordinary condition of believers, to be hated of all men ; to have all manner of evil spoken falsely of you ; to be persecuted from one city to another; to be killed all the day long, and counted as sheep to the slaughter. Do these seem strange matters to you? Did you never read or hear the Gospel ? nor know the terms of Christ till now? Did you never read of forsaking all for Christ, if indeed you would be his disciples ? Did you never

count what it must cost you to be saved ? Did you not renounce the world and the flesh in your baptismal, oft-renewed covenant, (1 Peter iv. 12, 13.) “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial, as if some strange thing happened to you ; but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings.” And will you think so strange of smaller matters, as to think they excuse your impatience, and evil speeches?

By this time you may see, if you are willing to see, that all among us that are not real saints, are hypocrites, if they profess themselves Christians and the servants of God; and that miserable, ungodly souls, that call such hypocrites, as are more diligent than themselves for their salvation, do but discover their ignorance aud malignity, and condemn themselves in betraying their hypocrisy, while they reproach the practice of the same christian religion which themselves profess; and the obedience to that Scripture which they confess, themselves, to be the word of God. All the profane, and unsanctified among us, that call themselves Christians, are certainly hypocrites. And for the godly it is the very same religion, that is professed by them and you ; it is the same engagement and vow that you all made to God in baptism; and suffer but reason impartially to tell you, when two men have entered the same covenant, and one never mindeth it so as to keep it ; and the other makes it his chiefest care; which of these is like to be the dissembler in his covenant? When two men profess themselves the servants of God, and as such place their hopes in heaven, and one of them makes a jest of sin, and serveth the flesh and world which he hath renounced, and hates those that diligently serve the Lord; and the other maketh it the principal care and business of his life to serve and please him, insomuch as he is reproached for it, as making Iro ado about it than he needs; which of these are

Socrites, and which are serious, in the performing of their

l.nants, and living according to their profession? If two se that promise to do your work, and one labour as hard as he can, arte the other sit down and deride him for making so much ado, which was it that played the hypocrite in his promise? If diligence in God's service be a sign of hypocrisy, then promisekeeping is hypocrisy, and promise-breaking is sincerity; and then you may transfer the case to God, who will be the rewarder of them only that diligently seek him. (Heb. xi. 6.) And say that it is his faithfulness to break his promises, and his unfaithfulness to keep them. But who will spend words on such impious

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absurdities ? so gross, that the devil would have showed himself a fool to vent them, if he had not made his followers such fools as to believe them. But for the faithful servants of the Lord, let them know, that they must serve him on such terms; they must live above the judgment and reputation of this world; and be content that God, the searcher of hearts, shall be their judge, who knoweth both sincerity and hypocrisy; and will bring forth their righteousness as the light. Christians, you 'must not only be sincere, but also patiently expect to be accounted hypocrites, and pointed at as the only dissemblers of the world ; you must not only be honest, but patiently expect to be accounted dishonest. You must not only be wise and sober, but patiently expect to be accounted fools and madmen. You must not be liberal, charitable, and contemners of the world, but patiently expect to be called covetous, even though you give away all that you have. You must not only be chaste and temperate ; but also patiently expect to be defamed as incontinent and licentious, and as Christ was called, a wine-bibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. A minister must not only lay out himself wholly for the saving of men's souls, and spend himself and all that he hath on his Master's work; but also patiently expect to be accounted unfaithful, covetous, and negligent, and murmured at by almost all whose unreasonable desires he doth not answer, and be censured by almost all whose wills and humours he doth not fulfil; and that is, most, that have a self that ruleth at home, and, therefore, they think should be the idol of others, as it is their own; and that are but unacquainted with the reasons of those things that do displease them. It is little comfort to us to do good, if we cannot bear the estimation of doing evil, and cannot lose all the observation, acknowledgment and applause of man, as if we had never done, whacod at all. It is far from christian perfection to be honest, and go you and sincere, if we must needs be accounted to be as wegood. and cannot patiently be esteemed dishonest, ungor?' hypocritical; and be judged worst when we are baar; what have the servants of Christ lost their lives for in flames, and by other sorts of torments, but for the best of their service, and greatest of their piety and fidelity ? When dogs bark at passengers, commonly it signifieth but two things, namely, that they are persons they know not, or that they hate; but it is no sign that the persons are bad, or poor, or sick; for be they never so bad and miserable, if they know them, and love them, the dogs

will not bark at them. See that thou be not an hypocrite, and then it must be accounted a small matter by thee, to be called an hypocrite; yea, if persons that fear God themselves shall so esteem thee, it is no other affliction but what thou must be armed for, and patiently undergo. Even from the godly, through mistake, we often suffer most for our greatest duties, and are censured most for that which God and conscience most approve us for; and lose our reputations for that which God would be greatly offended with us if we did otherwise. As ever then you would not prove yourselves hypocrites, see that you look not for the hypocrite's reward, as Christ calls it, Matt. vi. 2, which is, to be approved of men; be they good or bad men, their overvalued applause may be but the hypocrite's reward. To be content and patient in doing well, and being judged to do ill, and being good, and being judged to be bad, is the property of him that is sincere indeed; therefore, to be unthankfully requited and reviled, and spit upon, and buffeted, and shamefully used and put to death, even by those whose lives and souls he had, with greatest care and condescension, pitied, this was the pattern of love and self-denial that was set us by our Lord. And though we cannot reach his measure, and distempered Christians find much struggling before they can bring themselves to patience, under such ingratitude and unworthy usage from the world, especially from their mistaken froward brethren, yet, in some prevailing measure, it must be done. For he that cannot serve God without the hypocrite's reward, is but an hypo

If he will not be a Christian, obedient, charitable, diligent, faithful, for heaven and the pleasing of God alone, he is not a Christian indeed. And, alas, what a pitiful reward is it, to be thought well of, and applauded by the tongues of mortal men! How few were ever the more holy by applause ! But thousands have been hurt, if not undone, by it. Thou givest all thou hast to the poor : thou spendest thyself wholly, and all that thou hast, for the service of God, and the good of others; it is well; it must be so. But, after all, thou art censured, slandered, vilified, and unthankfully and unmannerly used. And what of that? what harm dost thou fear by it? What advantage thy pride and selfishness might have taken, even by due applause and thankfulness, it is easy to perceive. But now the temptation is taken out of thy way; thou art secluded from all creature-com

"; forts; and so art directed, and almost forced, to look up to the love of God alone; now thou hast no other reward before thee, it

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