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mony (for piety and charity are both turned into imagery and ceremony by Satan, when he would destroy them); but seriously to instruct his ministers themselves, what lowliness they must use towards one another, and to all the flock. Christ went on foot to preach the Gospel, and so did his apostles; not to oblige us to do so when weakness doth forbid us; nor to deny the benefit of a horse, when we may have it; but to teach us that neither pride should máke us ashamed to go on foot, nor laziness make it seem intolerable, when we are called to it. When Christ would appear in state at Jerusalem, he rode upon a borrowed ass, to fulfil the prophecy; Zech. ix. 9. "Behold thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass;" Matt. xxi. 5. Paul refused not (with other preachers) to labour at the trade of a tent-maker; Acts xviii. 3. And Timothy was not ashamed to bring him his cloak and parchments, so great a journey; 2 Tim. iv. 13. Nothing is avoided by the lowly as a shame, but that which is displeasing to God, and disagreeable to his Christian duty; but not that which he can call the service of God, and which God accepteth and will reward.
8. The highminded are ashamed of the company and familiarity of the poor (unless when they seek for applause by popularity): and they greatly affect the favour and company of the rich; James v. 4. 6. Therefore Solomon saith, that "the rich hath many friends, when the poor is hated of his neighbour;" Prov. xiv. 20.
But the lowly choose to converse with the low. For so did Christ who was our pattern: and it is his law, (Rom. xii. 16.) "Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate." Christ was not ashamed to call us brethren, (Heb. iii. 11.) nor will he be ashamed so to call the least of his true disciples before God and angels at the dreadful day; Matt. xxv. 40. xxviii. 10. John xx. 17. They are the most honourable company, who are likest to Christ, and are • the wisest and the holiest; and not those who are most like to his crucifiers and enemies, and have their portion in this world.
9. Pride is usually attended with vain curiosity: curiosity in ornaments, in fashions, in dressings, in attendance, in furniture, in rooms, and in abundance of small, inconsiderable circumstances. The proud (who go this lower way)
do make a great matter of so many such trifles, that their minds have no room for the greatest things. They do not only trouble themselves "with many things," while the "one thing needful" is the more neglected (Luke x. 42.); but all about them must be partakers of the trouble. What abundance of trades doth pride maintain! And how many are continually at work to serve it!
But the lowly who mind not vain ostentation, do save themselves all this unprofitable pains: they can avoid indecent sordidness at a cheaper rate than by proud curiosity. They are accurate and curious in greater matters, in doing good, in securing their salvation, in escaping sin, and in pleasing God: which will one day prove a wiser curiosity, than to be curious in courtship, and compliments, and dressings, and other impertinent, childish things: though the least just decency is not to be neglected in its place, it is foolish pride to prefer it before things of importance and necessity. Man's mind and time are not sufficient for all things. Somewhat must be omitted; and it is wisdom which chooseth to omit the least, and folly which chooseth to omit the greatest. As in learning, they prove the soundest scholars who spend their studies on the most excellent and useful parts of learning; whilst those that too much study things superfluous, are ever empty of necessary knowledge. It is so also in the actions of our lives. As Paul so vehemently condemneth vain jangling about unnecessary and unedifying questions, though truth was not contemptible in those matters: so also vain curiosity, and unedifying diligence (though about things not altogether contemptible) is but the perilous diversion of the mind from greater things; 1 Tim. i. 6, 7, &c.
10. The highminded cannot endure to be beholden (unless necessity or covetousness prevail against their pride). But they would have all others beholden to them, that they may seem as petty deities in the world. O how it puffeth them up to have the people depend upon them, and acknowledge them for their benefactors, and to have crouded sacrifices of thanks and praise to be offered them as they go about the streets. If they were accounted such as the world could not live, nor be happy without them, as being the
most necessary parts or pillars thereof, nothing could more content their humour.
But the lowly mind desireth rather to do good, than to be known to do it. And it is not men's unthankfulness that will take him off, because it is not their thanks which is his reward. He would be as like God as he can in doing good, but not for his own glory, but for God's. As he is God's steward, it is with God that he keepeth reckoning; and if his accounts will pass with him, he hath enough. And if God will have him to need the help of others, he is not too stout to seek and be beholden. Though every ingenuous man should value his freedom from the servitude of man (1 Cor. vii. 23.), and if he can be free, "should choose it rather;" ver. 21. And "the borrower is a servant to the lender;" Prov. xxii. 7. And we may say with him in Luke xvi. 3. "To beg I am ashamed." Yet here humility will make us stoop, when God requireth it. Christ himself refused not to be a receiver; Luke viii. 3. No, nor to ask a draught of water; John iv. And poverty is of a great mercy to the proud, to take them down, and make them stoop. "The rich answereth roughly; but the poor useth entreaties;" Prov. xviii. 23. So much of the marks of Pride.
Direct. 3. Overlook not the odiousness and peril of pride.' I will name you now but a few of its aggravations, because I have more largely mentioned them elsewhere.
1. It is the most direct opposition to God, to set up ourselves as idols in his place, and seek for some of his honour to ourselves.
2. It is the firstborn of the devil, and an imitation of him whom God in nature hath taught us to take for the greatest enemy of him and us; and the most odious of all the creatures of God.
3. It is madness to fall by that same sin, which we know was the overthrow of our first parents, and of the world.
4. And it is sottish impudency in such as we, who know that our bodies are going into rottenness and dust, and think in what a place and plight we must there lie, and that those days of darkness will be many: and who know that our souls are defiled with sin, and if we have any saving knowledge and grace, it is small, and mixed with abundance of
ignorance and corruption; and the nature of it is contrary
5. It is contrary to the design of redeeming grace, which is to save the humble, contrite soul.
6. It betrayeth men to a multitude of other sins (as vanity of mind, loss of time, neglect of duty, striving for preferment, quarrelling with others, upon matters of reputation or precedency, &c.).
7. And it is a sin that God is especially engaged against, and the surest way to dejection and self-frustration; 1 Pet. v. 5. James iv. 6. Isa. ii. 12. Prov. xv. 22. xvi. 5. xxi. 4. Psal. cxxxviii. 6. Job xl. 11, 12. Luke xiv.
III. After these three general Directions, I shall briefly name a few particular ones.
Direct. 1. Remember continually what you are, and what you were, what your bodies are, and will be; and what your souls are by the pollution of sin; and how close it still adhereth to you; and from how great a misery Christ redeemed you.' He neither knoweth his body, nor his soul, his sin, or misery, nor Christ, nor grace, who is a servant unto pride.
Direct. 2. Remember the continual presence of the most holy, dreadful God: and can pride lift up the head before him?'
Direct. 3. Look to the example of a humbled Saviour, and learn of God incarnate to be lowly; Matt. xi. 29. From his birth to his ascension, you may read the strangest lecture of lowliness, that ever was delivered to the haughty world.'
Direct. 4. Turn all your desires to the glorifying of God; remembering that you were not made for your own glory, but for his.'
Direct. 5. Think much of the heavenly glory, and it will cloud all the vainglory of the world.'
Direct. 6. Think what it is that is your honour among the angels in heaven, and what is most approved and honoured by God himself; and therein place your honour; and not in the conceits of foolish men.'
Direct. 7. Lastly, Make use of humbling occasions to exercise your self-denial and lowliness of mind.' I commend not to you the pious folly of those popish saints, who are
magnified by them for making themselves purposely ridiculous to exercise their humility, (as by going through the streets with their breeches on their heads, and other such fooleries); for God will give you humbling occasions enough, when he seeth good: but when he doth it, be sure that you improve them to the abasing of yourselves. And use yourselves to be above the esteem of man, and to bear contempt when it is cast upon you (as Christ did for your sakes), though not to draw it foolishly or wilfully upon yourselves. He that hath but once borne the contempt of men, is better able to bear it afterwards, than he that never underwent it, but thinketh that he hath an entire reputation to preserve: and he that is more solicitous of his duty, and most indifferent in point of honour, doth usually best secure his honour by such neglect, and always best undergo dishonour.
How to escape the Sin of Fulness or Luxury by Faith. THE second sin of Sodom, and fruit of abused prosperity, is Fulness of Bread; Ezek. xvi. 49. Concerning which (having also handled it elsewhere more at large), I shall now briefly give you these general Directions first, and then a few that are more particular.
Direct. 1. Understand well what sinful fulness is.' It is sinful when it hath any one of these ill conditions.
1. When you eat or drink more in quantity than is consistent with the due preservation of your health: or so much as hurteth your health or reason. For the use of food is to fit us for our duty; and therefore that which disableth or unfitteth us, is too much. But here both the present and future must be considered.
2. When you have no higher end in eating and drinking, than the pleasing of your appetite. Be it little or much, it is to be judged of according to its end. A beast hath no other end because he hath no reason, and so properly hath no end at all; but we are bound to eat and drink to the glory of God, and to do all to further us in his service; 1 Cor. x. 31. The appetite may be pleased in order to a higher end; that is, 1. So far as it is a true directer what is for our health,