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antedate Rottennefs and Corruptiori, what an Offering is This! This foul polluted Instrument of Sin, to bring before a God of such Infinite Spotless Purity, who cannot endure to behold the leaft Iniquity! And when Others in defiance of an After-Reckoning, will proftitute their Conscience day by day, Some to their Ambition and Others to
and Some to another, but some even to their Humour and Jollity; I fay, When Men's Eternal Interests are at Stake, and they can so far shake off the Con. fideration of them, as to make them give place to a Little Wild Mirth, or any Wantón Folly, it is to be Fear'd they have almoft ftifled, if not quite worn off all Apprehensions of a Relurrection and Judgement Day. It would be hard to reconcile it to Reafon, how 'twere possible for Men to be so far bereft of Sence, to fuch a degree of Stupidity, and Madness, as thus to dally with Heaven in a Cafe of such Infinite Concernment. When they come to State their Accounts,' and give us the Summ of all the Pleasures they have ever known in Sin, is there any thing There to be found to ballance with Damga. tion? Unless the Remembrance of Paft Follies can yield such grateful Reflecti
ons, a's can be able to support the Spirits under Dying Agonies and Endless Torments.
But if we come to a Comparative Confideration of Our Obligations, and of those gracious Advantages that God has vouchlaf'd us beyond former Ages, in the full Discovery of his Will to us, (the Only Sure Guide we have to the Performance of it,) This will inhance our Folly, and add weight to our Condemnation. If we know and beleive that we Thall Rife again, either to Happinefs or Damdation, and can find in our Hearts to Live so little under the awe of such Principles, the very Heathens will rise up in Judgement against us and will Condemn us. For if both Jews and Gentiles, whose Understandings were left in the Dark, or at best but in a glimmering and Uncertain Light, as to the Resurrection and Future State, (the best Countercharms we have against the Charms of Sensual Pleasures,) did yet think themselves obliged to the practice of Vertue and Honesty, according to the Measures of their Knowledge; the Question will then return upon us with redoubled Obligation and Atronger force of Emphasis What manner of persons ought W E to be! We, who have the Oracles of Truth to ina
struct and guide us; the Holy Spirit of God to Alift and Strengthen us ; All the Promises of the Gospel to encourage us, and all the Terrors of the Lord to awe and restrain us ; We, that Beleive the Resurrection of the Body and the Life Everlasting; What manner of persons ought We to be, in all Holy Conversation and Godliness! looking for, and hasting to, the Coming of the Day of Christ, that when He who is our Life shall appear, we also may come forth to the Resurrection of Life, and may appear with Him in Glory. To whom with the Father and the Holy Ghost, be all Honour and Glory and Praise for ever and ever.
ACTS XXIV. 25.
and Temperance, and Judgement
T. Paul had been under a long
and was no sooner come up to
verts, raised such a Tumult against him, as a Subverter of the Law of Moses, that he was in Danger of being pulled in pieces by them, as we are told Chap. xxiii. And they had afterwards more than forty of them bound themselves under a Curse to Assassinate him, if he had not been rescued by the Chief-Captain, and sent to Cæfarea to Felix the Governour ; who after he had heard himo defend himself against his Accusers, though he found no Cause to Condemn him, yet neither
would he Acquit him, but still kept V. 26: him under Restraint, in hopes that money
should have been given him of Paul, that he might loose him from his Bonds. But he being upon that expectation still kept under Confinement, it happened
during his Imprisonment, that Drufilla, V. 24. the Governour's Wife (which was a few
ess,) having the Curiosity to hear him discourse concerning the Faith in Christ, St. Paul was for that End brought before them. But it proved not to be, as they had designed it, a Matter of Diversion; For he chose such Subjects to discourse upon, Righteousness, and Temperance, and a Judgement to come, and laid them so home to them, that That Word which is Quick and Powerful, and Sharp as a two edged Sword, pierc'd to the very Soul,and made Felix Tremble.