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fecret duties? Sincere fouls are uniform fouls, Psal. cxix. 6. the hypocrite is no closet-mao, Matth. vi. 5.

2. Doth that which I call grace in me oppose and mortify, or doth it not rather quietly consist with, and protect my lufts and corruptions ? True grace tolerates no luft, Gal. v. 17. No, not the bosom darling corruptions, Pfal. xviii. 23.

3. Doth that which I call my grace, humble, empty, and abate my soul ? Or rather, doth it not puff it up with self-conceitedness ? All faving grace is humbling grace, i Cor. xv. le. “ But the soul which is lifted up, is not upright,” Hab. ü. 4.

Lastly, Caolt thou, my foul, rejoice and blefs God for the grace imparted to others? And rejoice, if any design for Christ be carried on in the world by other hands? Or, rather, doft thou not envy those that excel thee, and carest for no work in which thou art not seen?

But stay, my soul, it is enough : If these be the substantial differences betwixt special and common grace, I more than doubt, I shall not endure the day of his coming, Whose fan is in his hand. Do not those spots appear upon me, which are not the spots of his children? Woe is me, poor wretch ! the cha: racters of death are upon my soul! Lord add power to the form, life to the name to live, practice to the kaowledge, or I perish eternally ! O rather give me the saint's heart, than the angels tongue ; the poorest breathing of the Spirit, than the richest ornaments of common gifts! Let me never deceive myself, or others, in matters of fo deep and everlasting consequence.

The POE M.
IN
N eastern countries, as good authors write,

Tares, in their springing up, appear to sight,
Not like itself, a weed, but real wheat ;
Whose shape and form it counterfeits fo neat,
That 'twould require a most judicious eye,
The one from t'other to diversify.
Till both to some maturity be grown,
And then the difference is eas'ly known.
Even thus hypocrisy, that cursed weed,
Springs up so like true grace, that he will need
More than a common insight in this case,
"That faith, this is not, that is real grace.
Ne'er did the cunning actor, tho'a Nave
Array'd in princely robes, himself behave
so like a king, as this doth act the part

of saving grace, by its deep hellish art.
Do gracious fouls melt, mourn, and weep for fig?
The like in hypocrites obferv'd hath been.
Have they their comforts, joys, and raptures sweet?
With them in comforts hypocrites do meet.
In all religious duties they can go
As far as faiats, in fomethings farther too,
They speak like angels, and you'll think within,
The very spirit of Christ and grace hath been.
They come lo ocar, that some, like Ifaac, take
Jacob for Efau, this, for that mistake:
And boldly call (their eyes, with his; being dim)
True grace; hypocrisy ; and duty, fin:
Yea, many also, Jacob-like, embrace
Leah for Rachel, common gifts for grace:
And in their bofom hug it, till the light
Discover their mistake, and clear their fight :
And then, like him, confounded they will cry,
Alas! 'ris Leah, curs'd hypocrify !
Guide me, my God, that I may not, instead
Of faving grace, ourse up this cursed weed.
O let my heart, at last, by thee be found
Sincere, and all thy workings on it found!

CHA P. XIII.

Upon the Dangers incident to the Corn from Seed-time to

Harveft.

Fowls, weeds, and blastings do your corn annoy ;
Even fo corruptions would your grace defroy.

OBSERVATION.
THERE are, amongft many others, three critical and dan-

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firit, when corn is newly committed to the earth, all that lies uncovered is quickly picked up by the birds; and much of that which is but Nightly covered, is plucked up as soon as it begias to sprout, by rooks, and other devouring fowls, Mat. xiii. 4. But if it elcape the fowls, and gets root in the earth, yet then it is hazarded by noxious weeds, which purloin, and fuck away its gourishment, whilft it is yet in the tender blade. If by the care of the vigilant husbandman it be freed from choaking weeds ; yet, lastly, as great a danger as any of the former Oill attends it; for oftentimes, whilst it is blowing in the ear, blastings aod mildews smite it in the ltalk, and cuts off the juice and fap that should ascend to nourish the ear, and to shrivels and dries up the grain whilft it is yet immatorate; whereby it becomes like those ears of corn in Pharaoh's vision, which were thin and blasted with the ea ft-wind; or like the ears the Psalmist speaks of upon the house top, wherewith the reaper fillech pot his arms.

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APPLICATION.
RUE grace, from the infancy to the perfection thereof,

conflicts with far more greater dangers, amongst which it answerably meets with three dangerous periods, which marvellously hazard it : So that it is a much greater wonder that it ever arrives at its just perfection. For, (1.) No sooner hath the great Husbandman disseminated these holy feeds in the regenerate heart, but multitudes of impetuous corruptions immediate ly assault, and would certainly devour them, like the fowls of the air, did not the same arm that fowed them, also protect them. It fares with grace, as with Christ, its Author, whom Herod fought to destroy in his very infancy. The new creature is scarce warm in its feat, before it must fight to defend itfelf. This conflict is excellently set forth in that famous text, Gal. v. 17. “ The “ Alesh lufteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh ; " and thele are contrary the one to the other, so that ye cannot do the things that ye

would." By Beth here uaderhand the corruption of nature by origioal sia, and the fiaful motions thereof; by Spirit, not the soul, or natural spirit of man, but the Spirit of God in man, viz. those graces ia maó which are the workmanship of the Spirit, and therefore called by his name. The opposition betwixt these two is expressed by lusting, (i.e.) deliriog the mutual ruin and destruction of each other; før evok when they are Rot acting, yet then they are lustiog; there is an opposite dif position againft each other? which oppoficion is both a formal and an effective opposition. There are two contrary forms; two men ia every faiot, Col. ij. 9, 10. From hence an effective opposition must needs follow ; for .as things are in their natures and principles, so they are in their operations and effects; workings always follow beings; fire and water are of contrary qualities, and when they meet, they effectively oppose each o sher. Sin and grace are so opposite, that if Ga Maould cease to oppose grace, it would cease to be fia; and if grace should cease to oppose fio, it would cease to be grace. And this doth much

brore endanger the work of grace than any other enemy it hath;
because it works against it more inwardly, constantly, and
advantageously, than any thing else can do. (1.) More inwardly,
for it hath its being and working in the same foul where grace
dwells; yea, in the felf-lame faculties; so that it not only
fets one faculty agaiolt another, but the fame faculty against it-
felt; the understanding against the understanding, and the will
against the will ; fo that ye cannot do th: good, nor yet the
evil that ye would; oot the good that ye would, because when -
the fpirit moveth to good, and beats upon the heart by Divine
pulations, exciting it to duty, the Acth-crosses and opposes it
there; and if it caonot totally hinder the performance of a
duty, yet it lames the foul upon the working hand, where-
by the performance is not fo fpiritual, free and composed, as it
defires; nor yet the evil that you would commit, ifgrace were
not there ; because when luft ftirs, in its first motions, grace
puts a rub in its way. “ How can I do this great wickedness,
“ and lin against God?” Geo. xxxix. 9. And if it cannot (which
for the most part it doth) hinder the acting of fin, yet it fo en-
gages the will against it, that it is not committed with compla-
cency and full consent, Rom. vii. 15.“ What I do, I allow not."
(2.) It opposes it more constantly, it is like a continual drop-
ping; a man can no more fly from this enemy than from him.
felf. There is a time when the devil leaves tempting, Matth.
iv. 11. but no time when corruption ceases from working.
Aod, lastly, It oppofes grace more advantageously than any other
coemy can do, for it is not only always in the fame foul with
it, but it is there naturally; it hath the advantage of the soil
which suits with it. And yet, oh the wonder of free grace!
it is not (wallowed up in victory, but it cscapes this hazard.

But (2.) It foon meets with another, though it escapes this, even by temptations, which strike desperately at the very life of it; for these, like the weeds, with seemingly-loving embraces, clasp about it; and did not the faithful God now make a way to escape, instead of an harvest, we should have an heap? For, alas, what are we ! to wrestle with principalities and powers, and spiritual wickedneffes in high places?

Lastly, Sad relapses, like blasts and rustings, do often fade, and greatly endanger it, when it is even ready for the harvest. Thus it fell out with David, whofe laft ways were not like his first; and yet by this these holy fruits were pot utterly destroy ed, because it is the feed of God, and so is immortal, 1 Joha V, 4, 5. And also because the promises of perfeverance and victory made to it, cannot be frustrated; amongst which these

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are excellent, Ifa. liv. 10. Jer. xxxiv. 40. i Cor. i. 8. Pfal. i. 3. Psal. cxxv. 1. Jobo iv. 15. So that here is matter of un{peakable comfort ; though the flesh fay, Ego deficiam, I will fail thee ; though the world say, Ego decipiam, I will deceive

: thee; though the devil fay, Ego eripiam, I will snatch thee 2way; yet as long as Christ faith, I will never leave thee, nor forfake thee, thy graces are secure in the midft of all these ene. mies.

REFLECTIONS.

1. This foul of mine was once plowed up The apostate's by conviction, and fown (as I thought) with reflection.

the feed of God. In those days maay pur

poses and good resolutions began to chink and bud forth, promising a blessed harvest: but oh! (with what confternation and horror should I speak it) the cares and pleafures of this life, the lusts and corruptions of my base heart fpriagiog up, have quite destroyed and choaked it; by which it appears it was not the seed of God, as I then imagined it co be; and now my expected harvest shall be an heap in the day of grief and desperate forrow, Ifa. xvii. 11. I had convictions, but they are gone; troubles for sin, conscience of duties, but all iş blasted, and my soul is now as a barren field, which God hath corfed.

Woe is me! I have revolted from God, and now that dread. ful word, Jer. xvii. 5, 6. is evidently fulfilled upon me; “ I am like the heath in the defart, that seeth pot when good " cometh; my foul inhabits the parched places of the wilder* Defs.”. Alas! all my formal and heartless duties were but as fo many scare-crows in the field, which could not defeod these Night workings from being devoured by the infernal fowls, Had these principles been the feed of God, no doubt they would have continued and overcome the world, 1 Joho ii, 19. Wretched foul! thy case is fad; it will be better with the uncultivated wilderness, thao with such a miscarrying soul, unless the great

Husbandman plow thee up the second time, and low thy heart .. with better feed.

2. And are the corruptions of my heart The careless foul's to grace, what fowls, weeds, and mildews refle&tion.. are to the corn? O what need have I then

to watch my heart, and keep it with all diligence; for in the life of that grace is wrapt up the life of my soul. He that carries a candle in his hand, in a bluftring stormy oight, had need to cover it close, left it be blown out, and he left in darkness. O let me never say, God hath pro

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