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the Meek's inheriting the Earth ; And Secondly shew, That they do so inherit it.

AND First, by their inheriting the Earth, I suppose, cannot be meant, that they shall have large Portions of it, that they shall raise

great Estates, that they shall take Root, and spread, and, as the Prophet expresses it, isa. 5. joyn house to house, and lay field to field. This, I suppose, cannot be meant:

I. BECAUSE this is not true : The Meek do not inherit the Earth according to this Sense.

II. BECAUSE if they did, this would not be a proper Ground for their being pronounced Blessed.

AND First, This Sense is not true; the Meek do not thus inherit the Earth. We rather find that the World is made for the Bold and the Violent, for the Rough-spirited and Turbulent, for the Furious and Boisterous; and that they have commonly the greatest Share of it, who de serve the least. And therefore we commonly urge this as one Argument against the Goodness of Riches, That they frequently fall to the Lot of the worst Men. And therefore, says the Psale mist, Psal. 74. Lo, these are the ungodly, these proSper in the world, and these have riches in possession: While, in the mean time, the Meek are oppressed and devoured by these Beasts of Prey; and are so far from inheriting the Earth, that it is as much as many of them can do to live upon it, and more than some of them can do to find Room under it.

Ват But Secondly, Suppose they did thus inherit the Earth, by having great Portions of it, yet this would not be a proper Ground for their being pronounced Blessed : For, Are Clods of Earth a suitable Good for Man? Or, Is Happiness to be measured by the Acre? Do we find that rich Men are fo very much happier than others? Or, Do we think that the Earth has Mines of Happiness, as it has of Gold? But, whatever we think, Is it at all probable, that our Blessed Lord, who himself made choice of Poverty, who but in a Line or two before pronounced the Poor blessed, who tells us that his own Kingdom was not of this World, who bids us beware of Covetousness, and warns us of the great Danger of Riches, by telling us how hard it is for one that has them to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; who dehorts us from laying up Treasures on Earth, and who, lastly, recommends to his Disciples nothing more than the Contempt of the World, by assuring them, that the Life of Man does not consist in the Abundance of Things which he possesses : I say, Is it imaginable that our Lord, after all this, should therefore pronounce the meek Man blessed, for having great Poffefsions?

This therefore cannot be the Thing meant by the Meek's inheriting the Earth; which i take, rather to signifie the Manner of Possessing, than the Greatness of their Poffefsions; and to import thus much, That the Meek shall enjoy what chey have, be it little or great, with Comfort,


and Satisfaction, and Tranquility of Mind ; whereas those of a contrary Disposition, tho' they may possess a great deal, may yet be truly faid to enjoy little or nothing. And this seems to be the sense of the Pfalmist, when, in Words directly parallel to these of our Lord, he says, The meek-spirited shall possess the earth, and shath be refreshed in the multitude of peace, Psal. 34. 11. That is, They shall have Comfort and Pleasure, Peace and Content, with whatever they have; which, how little foever, shall yet carry a true Relish, and yield more real Satisfaction to them, than the otherwise-affected can reap from their ample Revenues. According to what the Pfalmist, in the same place, immediately subjoins, Psal. 34 16. A small thing that the righteous has, is better than great riches of the ungodly.

This I take to be the Sense and Meaning of this Beatitude. As to the Truth and Reality of it, there is this double Security for it; the Natural Tendency of the Vertue of Meekness, and the Blessing of God upon it. As to its Natural Tendency, Meekness is a very decent, amiable and winning thing; and, accordingly, the Apoftle calls it, The ornament of a meek and quiet spirit. And by this, in all probability, the meek Man will sweeten and indear even his very Enenies to him, and so gain himself Peace without by his quiet and inoffensive Behaviour. But however this be, yet he is sure to have Peace within, with himself, and with God. And having this, he is in a very fit Condition



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of Mind to enjoy himself, and to take Comfort, in what he possesses.

Which he will be farther enabled to do, Secondly

, by the Blessing of God. And this again the Psalmist takes notice of, some few Verses after the fore-cited ones : Verf.22. Such as are bleffed of the Lord Svall possess the land, says he ; implying, that as the Meek, whom he just before spoke of, should possess the Earth, so it is through a special Blessing of God that they should do so. And these are two great Securities for a Life of Comfort, and Self-Ěnjoyment; the Peace of a fedate Spirit within, and the Blessing of God without. And both these the meek Man has, whom therefore we may venture to pronounce Blessed; and therefore Blessed, because he shall thus inherit the Earth: Which yer shall be but a Type and Pledge of his future Inheritance with the Saints in Light.

DISCOURse the Fourth.

MATTH. V. Ver. 'vi.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after

righieousness, for they Jhall be filled.
HO' God has provided Entertainment

for all the Appetites which he has T.

made, yet there are but two Appe

rites of Man which he intends to gratifie to the heighth, and to bless with a full and

lasting lasting Satisfaction; and those are, the Desire of being happy, and the Desire of being good. There are some Appetites of Man which are never satisfied; for, says the Wise Man, Eccl

. 1.8. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the car filled with hearing. Seeing and Hearing are the most refined of all the Senses; and those Appetites which are most fpiritual and refined, and come nearest to the Elevations of the Intellectual Na. ture, are always hardest to be satisfied: And the Intellectual Nature it felf, when it is more raised and elevated, as in the State of Separation, will have a more enlarged Appetite, and a sharper Edge of Desire, and so will be harder to be satisfied than it is now. Which, by the way, I take to be the Reason why those Sensual Spirits, which now feel no great Uneasiness from the Absence of the Supreme Good, will, notwithstanding, hereafter be extreamly miserable, in being exiled from his Beatifick Presence. As for the grosser Appetites of the Animal Nature, fuch as Hunger, Thirst, and the like; these, indeed, have this Advantage above the Finer, that they may be satisfied for some time, and (such is the Brutishness of Man) are too often over-charged. But then they will return again in certain Periods, like the Tide, and be as importunate as ever for new Supplies; and, as our Saviour told the Woman of Samaria, Joh. 4. 13. Whosoever drinks of this Water sall thirst again. The Appetite may be laid alleep for a while, but it will infallibly awake again into its former Eagerness.

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