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sul Desire of Riches j the Desire of Riches Serm by unjustifiable Means, and to no valu- XVI. able Purposes. And these are here styled ^^^Ts) the Lust of the Eyes j because the Love of '' Riches, as such, and as it stands here distinguished from Other vitious affections; the Covetous Dejire of Riches for Riches fake, without any regard to the True and Beneficial Uses of them; is but feeding the Eyes with a mere fruitless View of unprofitable Treasure, with the empty Shows of Vanity and Deceit. What Good is tfere, lays the Wise Man, Eccles. v. j 1, What Good is there to the Owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their Eyes? There is One afone, fays he, and there is not a Second, ch. \v. 8, yea, he hath neither Child, nor B-rother; yet is there no end of all his Labour, neither is his Eye satisfied with Riches; neither saith he, for whom do I labour, and bereave my foul of good? This is also Vanity. The Phrase, neither is his Eye satisfied with Riches, is the fame as what he elsewhere expresses, Prov. xxvii. 20, Hell and dejlruftion are never full % so the Eyes of man are never satisfied. And from hence have been de
A a 3 rived
S E R M.rived those particular manners of speaking XVI. jn Scripture, where Liberality is styled a
?rov.xx\\.B°untifui ^ye, ^ a &»g-z? (or
9- Eye; and Covetousnejs, an Ei?// (or wfg-gardly) Eye; and the like. Whenever 'Riches are desired and employed as Instruments of Good, they are Then indeed real Blessings of Providence; Blessings to the Possessors of them, whom they enable to have Great Influence in promoting Justice, Righteousness, Charity, and every Other good Work in the World; And Blessings to Others, who are Partakers of the Effects of those good Influences. But when they are only what the Apostle here styles the Lujl of the Eyes; the Food either of Covetousness merely, without life; or of Vanity and Folly, in an ill Use of them: The Desire of them, in That case, is not an appetite of God's creating; 'Tis not of the Father, but of the World; 'Tis the creature merely of a perverted Imagination, and of a corrupt Will; 'Tis a Deflre that will perpetually put men upon obtaining Wealth by /// Methods, and upon employing it in nothing Good. The Temptations that This appetite exposes poses men to, are the Foundation of great S E J* M. Corruption. They that will be rich, (fays XVI. the Apostle,) fall into Temptation and <z'rv"SJ Snare, and into many fooliflo and hurtful Lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition: For the Love of Money is the Root of all Evil: Which while Some coveted after, they have erred from the Faith, and pierced themselves through with many Sorrows; That is, they have exposed themselves to be seduced into such corrupt Practices, the avoiding whereof Is That Part of true Religion, which St "James calls a man's keeping himself unspotted from the World.
The Third Head, under which the Apostle here reduces all the things that are in the World; in the wicked and corrupt Werld, considered as opposite to God; is Ambition, or the unlawful Desire of Dominion and Po wer. And This is here styled by the Apostle she Pride of Life, because both the Desire of obtaining Power by unrighteous methods, and the Pleasure of exercising it in ways of Insolence and Oppression, have their whole Foundation in Pride; in a presumptuous Imagination, that Right and Reason and Equity are things of No A a 4 reality,
Se R M.reality, and which may at any time givc ^ *- place to Our Wills and Pleasures. Tomer; considered in itself, as derived from God the Fountain of Power, and as being the Great Instrument of securing Right and Justice in the World; is indeed justly valuable, and most reasonably attended with the Highest Marks of Dignity and Esteem. Upon which account, not only Angels in Heaven, but Magistrates also upon Earth, are in some passages of Scripture called Gods; and God himself is, upon the fame ground, styled by Ætient Writers the * Fountain of Divinity: Not, the Fountain of the Deity, as the words were in after-times ignorantly misapplied: (For That, is styling God die Fountain of Himself;) But the Fountain of Divinity, meaning all That Dignity, Authority and Power, which is in Scripture at any time ascribed either to Angels or to Men. Power, I fay, in This fense, as derived from God, and exercised to His Glory, and to the Benefit of the World; is indeed greatly valuable, and
• xny\ &i!tij'&% not w/n rS ®uu. Set, Reply /» Pr. Waterland'/ Defence, p. 5, 48, 49, zig. And, 06jtrvat'wu on Dr. WaterlandV id Defence, p. 53.
'. - most most justly attended with all possibles Erm. Marks of Honour and Regard. But the Defire of Power for the Purposes of Ambition only, and for the Pleasure of bearing Rule; is what the Apostle here, with great Propriety and strictness calls The Pride of Life which is not of the Father, but of the World. 'Tis That Pride, or That setting up of Self-Will in opposition to Rea~ son and Equity, which is the Ground and Foundation of almost every Immorality. The Intemperances and Debaucheries Men are guilty of, for want of Government of 'Themselves, are most properly indeed included under the Firjl Head, which is the Lust cf the Flesh. The Second Head, which is the Lust of the Eyes, or the Covetous Desire of Riches for Riches fake, is also frequently the occasion of much corruption, of many and great particular ABs of Injujlice and Hardjkip towards Others. But the most general and extensive cause of an habitually injurious and oppressive Temper, is This Pride of Life; this Love of Power, Domination, and Self-WiU. From hence usually arise Wars, Desolations, Tyrannies, and all the Great, Extensive, and Merciless oppressions, which totally