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S Erm.Is.lx. 21 j in the City of God, wherein

to there shall in no wise enter any thing that dejileth, neither whosoever worketh abomination, or maketh a hie, Rev. xxi. 27. This is a Reward, the Prospect and Desire whereof, in the performance of our Duty, is no Diminution from the most exalted Love of God, or even of Virtue for Virtue's fake; but is indeed the very fame thing, or entirely coincident with, the Love of Virtue and the Love of God. For which reason, not only Moses; who, when he was come to years, refused to be called the Son of Pharaoh's Daughter; chufing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the Pleasures of Sin for a Season; Efteeming the reproach of Chrift greater Riches than the Treasures in Egypt; not only Moses, I fay, is in Scripture recorded, without any mark of Blame, to have had Respect, in all this, to the Recompence of Reward, Heb. xi. 26; and Abraham, that he looked for a City which hath Foundations, whose Builder and Maker is God, ver. 10, and the Martyrs of old, that they endured what they did, in hopes of obtaining a better Resurrection, ver. 35:

T"l .4. But even of our Saviour himself 'tis ex-Serm. presily affirmed, ch. xii. 2. that for the joy which was Jet hejore him, he endured the Cross, defpising the Shame, and is sat down at the right hand of the 'Throne of God.

zdly, The worshipping the Lord our God, as it denotes primarily That Internal Regard we are to bear towards him in the Assertions of our Minds; so it implies likewise, in the next place, our making suitable Confefjion with our Mouths, Rom. x. 10. With the Heart Man believeth unto Righteousness, and with the Mouth Confefjion is made unto Salvation. For 'tis our Duty, not only to have a constant Sense of God upon our own Minds, but to honour him also before men, and to promote the Knowledge of Him and his Truth in the World. And This Obligation, includes Many Particulars. The first and most obvious, is our obligation to make profejpon of the True Religion, how detrimental soever such profession may prove to our present temporal Interest. This is the Foundation of all the Slanders and Calumnies, of all the Reproaches and Persecutions, which the D 3 best

SeRm.best and most virtuous men have in all 1'• Ages and in all Nations suffered, upon account of their adhering to the Cause of Truth and Righteousness. Whosoever; fays our Saviour, snail confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in Heaven: But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in Heaven, Matt. x. 32. And still more distinctly Mark vm. 38. Whosoever, shall be afiamed of Me and of my Words, in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him also shall the Son of Man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the Holy Angels. This therefore is the first and principal Instance of Confessing God with our Mouths; The making constant Profesjion of the True Doctrine of Religion, how much, soever we may possibly suffer thereby in our temporal Interest. Nor need I here to have added the word, po]Ju> bly; Since indeed it can scarce possibly be otherwise, but that mens stedfastly adhering to what is True and Right, will always be more or less hurtful to their Temporal Interest, For though in the general,

the the Profession of Christian Religion doesSerm. not now expose men to persecution, as in the Apostles Days; but on the contrary, Chris- u~Sv°Nj tianity is in Some Countries publickly supported and encouraged: yet in the particular circumstances of life, such is the Ignorance and Superstition, such the Prejudices, Passions, and Animosities of Men; that whosoever will not suffer himself to be swayed, according to the Customs of a corrupt Age, by Other Arguments than those of Truth and Right; will certainly lose very many Advantages; and perhaps be despised and ill-spoken of for so doing: yea, and All that will live Godly in Christ "Jesus, fays the Apostle, (hall suffer persecution. 2 Tim. iii. 12. Next therefore to the Profession of true Religion in general, there is further implied in this Duty of Confessing God with our Mouths, an obligation not to be ashamed of Truth and Right, of Virtue and Goodness, in all particular Cafes wherein they may happen to be contested. St Paul, as he declared in general, that he was not astamed of the Gospel of Christ, Rom. i. 16; so, when in a particular circumstance he judged St Peter to D 4 have

Se Rm.have departed from the Simplicity of the "' Gospel, he withstood him to the Face,

^V*^ Gal. ii. ii. And 'tis accordingly excellent Advice which is given by the Son of Sirach, Ecclus. iv. 20. Beware of Evil, and be not ashamed when it concerns thy Soul: For there is a shame that bringeth Sin, and there is a shame which is glory and grace: Accept 110 ferson against thy Soul, and let not thy Reverence of any man cause thee to fall: Refrain not to speak, when there is occasion to do good; Jlrive for the Truth unto death, and the Lord shall fight for thee, Promoting steddily the Interest of Truth and Virtue, is making confession of God, who is the Author of Truth, and whose Glory and Honour is the establishment of Virtue and Righteousness. In these things consists the Kingdom of God; in these consists the excellency of rational Creatures: And when men of corrupt minds despise every thing as Folly and Enthusiasm> that happens not to serve the Interests of Covetousness and Ambition; then to adhere stedfastly to Truth and Virtue, notwithstanding all the Contempt that may be cast upon them, is what our Saviour calls, not

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