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Red Sea, and are triumphing in heaven already; and that it is but a few stragglers in the end of the world that are left behind and which part then should you desire to be with? And remember how ready those angels which rejoiced at your conversion, are to be your convoy unto Christ; Luke

xvi. 23.

Direct. 6. But especially think with greatest confidence and delight, that Jesus your head is entered into the heavens before you, and is making intercession for you, and is preparing you a place, and loveth your company, and will not lose it. You shall find him ready to receive your souls, and present them spotless unto God, as the fruit of his mediation: he will have you be with him to behold his glory; and none shall take you out of his hands. Let his love therefore draw up your desires, and establish your hearts in confidence and rest.'

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Direct. 7. Remember, that all that are living must come after you; and how quickly their turn will come;' and would you wish to be exempt from death alone, which the whole world below must needs submit to?

Direct. 8. Think still of the resurrection of Christ your head;' that you may see that death is a conquered thing, and what a pledge you have of a life to come.

Direct, 9. Dwell still in the believing forethoughts of the blessedness of the life to which you go, as it is your personal perfection, and the perfect love and fruition of God, with his perfect joyous praise.'

Remember still what it is to see and know the Lord, (and all things else in him, which are fit for us to know ;) and labour to revive your love to God, and then you revive your desires and preparations.

Direct. 10. Give up yourselves wholly to the will of God; and think how much better it is for upright souls to be in God's hand than in your own.' The will of God is the first and last, the original and end of all the creatures. Besides the will of Infinite Goodness, there is no final rest for human souls. But man's will is the alpha and omega, the beginning or first efficient, and the ultimate end of all obliquity and sin: be bold then and thankful in your approach to God, remembering how much more safe and comfortable it is to be (for life and death) at God's disposal, than our own.

Besides these, read the directions against the fear of death, in my book of "Self-Denial;" and what is said in my "Saints' Rest," and other the treatises before mentioned.

CHAPTER XXVIII.

How by Faith to look aright to the coming of Jesus Christ in Glory.

BECAUSE I have said so much of this also, in my "Saints' Rest," and in many other treatises, I will now pass it over with these brief directions.

Direct. 1. Delude not your souls, nor corrupt your faith and hope, by placing Christ's kingdom in things too low, or that are utterly uncertain.'

Think not so carnally of the second coming of Christ, as the Jews did of the first, who looked for an earthly kingdom, and despised the spiritual and heavenly and make not the unknown time, or other circumstances of his coming, to be to you as the certain and necessary things; lest you do as many of those called Millenaries or Fifth-MonarchyMen among us, who have turned the doctrine of Christian hope into an outrageous fury, to bring Christ down before his time, and to make themselves rulers in the world, that they might presently reign under the name of the Reign of Christ; and have by seditious, rebellious railing at Christ's ministers, and hating those that are not of their mind, done much to promote the kingdom of Satan, while they cried up nothing but the kingdom of Christ.

Direct. 2. Do all that you can in this day of grace, to promote Christ's present kingdom in the world, and that will prove your best preparation for his glorious coming.'

To that end labour with all your might, to set up life, and light, and love, abhorring hypocrisy, ignorance, and uncharitableness; turn not religion into a ceremony, carcase, or dead imagery or form: nor yet into darkness, error, or a human, wandering, distracting maze: nor into selfish, proud, censorious faction: Build not Christ's kingdom as the devil would do, by hypocritical dead shows, or by putting out his lights, or by schism, division, hatred and strife. Read James iii.

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Direct. 3. Yet leave not out of your faith and hope, any certain part of Christ's glorious kingdom.' We know that we shall for ever be with the Lord, and in the presence of the Father in heavenly glory; and withal, that we shall be in the New Jerusalem; and that there shall" be a new heaven, and a new earth, in which shall dwell righteousness; and that we shall judge the angels and the world." And if we know not the circumstances of all these parts, let not therefore any of them be denied; 1 Thess. iv. 11. 2 Cor. v. 1. 3. 8. Rev. xx. xxii. 2 Peter iii. 13.

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Direct. 4. Think what a day of glory it will be to Jesus Christ;' Matt. xxv. 31. O how different from his state of humiliation! He will not come again to be despised, spit on and buffetted, blasphemed and crucified: Pilate and Herod must be arraigned at his bar; it is the marriage-day of the Lamb; a day appointed for his glory; Rev. xxi. xxii.

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Direct. 5. Think what a day of honour it will be to God the Father; how his truth will be vindicated, his love and justice gloriously demonstrated; Matt. xxv. 2 Thess. i. 8,9. Direct. 6. Think what a day it will be to all the children of God;' to see their Lord, when he purposely cometh to be "admired and glorified in them ;" 2 Thess. i. 11, 12. To see him in whom they have believed, whom they loved and longed for; 2 Peter iii. 11-13. 1 Peter i. 8. To see him who is their dearest head and Lord; who will justify them before all the world, and sentence them to life eternal: to see the day in which they must receive the end of all their faith and hope; their prayers, labours and patience to the full; 1 Peter i. 8, 9. Rev. ii. iii. Matt. xxv. 2 Peter iv. 13.

Direct. 7. Think what a day it will be to the shame of sin, when it shall be the reproach and terror of the world; and to the honour of holiness, when faith, obedience and love shall be the approved honour of all the saints: and what a day of admirable justice it will be, when all that seems crooked here, shall be set straight: O the difference that there will then be in the thoughts of sin and holiness, in comparison of those that men have of them now!

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Direct. 8. Think what a confounding day it will be to the infernal serpent, and all his seed;' Matt. xxv. 41. 16. When impudent boasters shall then be speechless, and all iniquity shall stop her mouth; Matt. xxv. 44. xxii. 12.

Psal. cvii. And when Lazarus shall be seen in Abraham's bosom; and the enemies of the saints shall see them ad vanced (as Haman did Mordecai) and rejoicing when the glory of Christ is revealed; 1 Peter iv. 13. When every scorner's mouth shall be stopped, and all stand guilty before their Judge, (Rom. iii. 4. 19.) and the wretched unprepared souls must, for departing from God, be sentenced to depart into misery for ever! Matt. xxv. 41. 46. Jude 6.

Direct. 9. And think what a change that day beginneth both with the saints and with the world:' What a glory it is that we must immediately possess, in body and soul; and how we must partake of the kingdom of our Lord: saints shall be scorned and persecuted no more: the threatenings and promises of Christ shall be no more denied by unbelievers: sin will be no more in honour, nor pride and sensuality bear sway: the church will be no more eclipsed, either by its lamentable imperfections and diseased members, or by the divisions of sects, or the scatterings of the cruel, or the slanders of the lying tongue; Ephes. v. 27. Satan will no more tempt or trouble us (Rev. xii. 9. Matt. xxv. 41.); Sin and Death will be excluded; and all the fears and horrors of both: for the face of Infinite Love will perfectly and perpetually shine upon us, and shine us into perfect perpetual glory, love and joy; and will feed these, and the thankful and praiseful expressions of them, to all eternity; Matt. v. 46. 2 Cor. iv. 17. Rev. ii. iii.

Direct. 10. Lastly, Think how near all this must needs be.' If the day of the Lord was near in the times of the apostles, it cannot be far off to us. If the world's duration be to six thousand years (the time which arrogant presumption most plausibly guesseth at), it will be less than three hundred and fifty years to it.

time, we know it cannot be long.

Though we know not the

And let me conclude with a warning to both sorts of readers: And 1. To the ungodly, unprepared sinner. Poor soul! dost thou believe this dreadful day or not? If not, why dost thou dissemble, by professing it in thy creed? If thou do, how canst thou live so merrily or quietly in a careless, unprepared state? Canst thou possibly forget so great, so sure, so near a day? Alas, it will be another kind of meeting, than Christ had with sinners upon earth; when

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he came in meekness and humiliation, not to judge and condemn the world, but to be falsely judged and condemned by them; John iii. 17. xxii. 47. Nor will it be such a meeting as Christ had with thee, either by his ministers that called thee to repent, who were men whom thou couldst easily despise; or by his Spirit which thou couldst resist and quench or by his afflicting rod, which did but say to thee, Go, sin no more, lest worse befal thee; John v. 14. Heb. xii. 10. 12. 1 Tim. v. 24. Nor as the judgment of man's assize, which passeth sentence only against a temporal life; Luke xii. 4. Nor like the treaty of a Judas with his new awakened conscience here. O no! it will be a more glorious, but more dreadful day: it will be the meeting, not only of a creature with his Creator, but of a sinner with a just and holy God, and of a despiser of grace, with the God whom he despised. O terrible day to the unbelieving, ungodly, carnal and impenitent; Heb. x. 31. ii. 3. x. 12. Luke xix. 27. There must thou appear to receive thy final doom; to hear the last word that ever thou must hear from Jesus Christ (unless his everlasting wrath be called his word); and O, how different will it be from the words which thou wast wont to hear! Thou wast wont to hear the calls of

grace; mercy did entreat thee to return to God; Christ by

his ministers did beseech thee to be reconciled: but if thou entreat him for pardon and peace, with the loudest cries, it would be all in vain; Matt. vii. 21-23. Prov. i. 27, 28. Now the voice is, "Behold the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world!" John i. 29. But then it will be," Behold he cometh with clouds, and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him, and all the kindreds of the earth shall wail, because of him;" Rev. i. 7. And, "Behold the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, to execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them, of all their ungodly deeds, which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches, which ungodly sinners have spoken against him;" Jude 14, 15. Now he entreateth you to come to him that you may have life;" John v. 40. But then you will cry to the mountains to fall upon you, and the hills to cover you from his presence; Luke xxiii. 30. Rev. vi. 16. Now he saith, "Behold I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear

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