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him: When his old companions came to see him, he would stir up himself as much as he could, both by words and looks, to signify they were welcome to him; he would also talk with them freely, and look pleasantly upon them, though the talk of such could be none other but such as David said carnal men would offer to him, when they came to visit him in his sickness: "If he comes to see me, (says he), he speaketh vanity, his heart gathereth iniquity to itself." But these kind of talks, I say, Mr Badman better brooked, than he did the company of better men.
But I will more particularly give you a character of his carriage to good men (and good talk) when they came to see him.
1. When they were come, he would seem to fail in his spirits at the sight of them.
2. He would not care to answer them to any of those questions that they would at times put to him, to feel what sense he had of sin, death, hell, and judgment: but would either say nothing, or answer them by way of evasion, or else by telling of them he was so weak and spent, that he could not speak much.
3. He would never shew forwardness to speak to or talk with them, but was glad when they held their tongues. He would ask them no question about his state and another world, or how he should escape that damnation that he had deserved.
4. He had got a haunt at last to bid his wife and keeper, when these good people attempted to come to see him, to tell them that he was asleep, or inclining to sleep, or so weak for want thereof, that he could not abide any noise. And so he would serve them time after time, till at last they were discouraged from coming to see him any more.
5. He was so hardened now, in this time of his sickness, that he would talk, when his companions came unto him, to the disparagement of those good men, (and of their good doctrine too), that of love did come to see him, and that did labour to convert him.
6. When these good men went away from him, he would never say, pray when will you be pleased to come again, for I have a desire to more of your company, and to hear more of your good instruction? No, not a word of that; but when they were going, would scarce bid them drink, or say, Thank you for your good company, and good instruction.
7. His talk in his sickness with his companions, would be of the world, as trades, houses, lands, great men, great titles, great places, outward prosperity, or outward adversity, or some such carnal thing.
By all which I conclude, that he did not desire a sense and sight of his sin, that he might repent, and be saved.
Atten. It must needs be so as you say, if these things be true that you have asserted of him. And I do the rather believe them, because I think you dare not tell a lye of the dead.
Wise, I was one of them that went to him, and that beheld his carriage and manner of way; and this is a true relation of it that I have given you.
Atten. I am satisfied: But pray, if you can, shew me now by the word, what sentence God doth pass upon such men.
Wise. Why, the man that is thus averse to repentance, that desires not to hear of his sins, that he might repent and be saved, is said to be a man that saith unto God, "Depart from me, for I desire not the knowledge of thy ways." He is a man that says in his heart, and with his actions, I have loved strangers, (sins), and after them I will go." He is a man that shuts his eyes, stops his ears, and that turneth his spirit against God. Yea, he is the man that is at enmity with God, and that abhors him with his soul.
Atten. What other sign can you give me that Mr Badman died without repentance?
Wise. Why, he did never heartily cry to God for mercy all the time of his affliction. True, when sinking fits, stitches, or pains, took hold upon him, then he would say, as other carnal men use to do, Lord help me, Lord strengthen me, Lord deliver me, and the like : But to cry to God for mercy, that he did not, but lay, as I hinted before, as if he never had sinned.
Atten. That is another bad sign indeed: for crying to God for mercy is one of the first signs of repentance. When Paul lay repenting of .his sin upon his bed, the Holy Ghost said of him, "Behold he prays." But he that hath not the first signs of repentance, it is a sign he hath none of the other, and so indeed none at all. I do not say but there may be crying, where there may be no sign of repentance: "They cried," says David, 6. to the Lord, but he answered them not;" but that he would have done, if their cry had been the fruit of repentance. But, I say, if men may cry, and yet have no repentance, be sure they have none that cry not at all. It is said in Job, "They cry not when he bindeth them;" that is, because they have no repentance; no repentance, no cries; false repentance, false cries, true repentance, true cries.
Wise. I know that it is as possible for a man to forbear crying that hath repentance, as it is for a man to forbear groaning that feeleth deadly pain. He that looketh into the book of Psalms, (where repentance is most lively set forth, even in its true and proper effects), shall there find, that crying, Strong crying, hearty crying, great crying, and incessant crying, bath been the fruits of repentance: But none of this had this Mr Badman; therefore he died in his sins.
That crying is an inseparable effect of repentance, is seen in these scriptures. "Have mercy upon me, O God; according to the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. O Lord, rebuke me not in ' thine anger, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure. Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am weak: O Lord heal me, for my bones are vexed. My soul is also vexed,, but thou, O Lord, how long! Return, O Lord, deliver my soul: O save me for thy mercies sake. O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure; for thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore. There is no soundness in my flesh, because of thine anger; neither is there any rest in my bones, because of my sin. For mine iniquities are gone over mine head; as an heavy burden, they are too heavy for me. My wounds stink and are corrupt, because of my foolishness. I am troubled, I am bowed down greatly, I go mourning all the day long. My loins are filled with a loathsome disease, and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and sore broken; I have roared by reason of the disquietness of my heart."
I might give you a great number more of the holy sayings of good men, whereby they express how they were, what they felt, and whether they cried or no, when repentance was wrought in them. Alas! alas ! it is as possible for a man, when the pangs of guilt are upon him, to forbear praying, as it is for a woman, when pangs of travail are upon her, to forbear crying. If all the world should p