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between the Guilty and the Innocent; and call both to account hereafter; however I may think fit to try them in the mean while, and keep thofe 'Things in the Dark at present, which then shall be notorious to all the World. And what Mistakes foever may prevail now, my Judgment will be according to Equity and Truth ; and my Sentence, once pronounced, can never be revers’d. Few indeed are capable of discerning the Justice of my Providence, in suffering Innocent Men to be traduced, and their honest Actions misunderstood. But I do nothing without wise Reasons, and neither am, nor can be, mistaken in my Methods, how much foever fhort-sighted and inconsiderate Men are confounded about them.
Appeal then in all thefe Cafes to my Determination, and let thy Matters rest fo fully there, as not only to difregard what others think concerning thee, but even in some measure to distrust thy own Judgment concerning thy felf. Consider, that I think many Things fit for my Servants, which' they can by no means imagine convenient for themselves. This very Reflection preserves a good Man's Temper, in every Accident of Life; because he knows, that every Accident falls out thus by my Direction. This buoys his Spirits up against the Insults and Injuries of Calumny and Detraction; and keeps them from fwelling into Pride and immoderate Joy, when his Innocence is cleared, and his Virtue commended. He knows that God fees not as Man fees; for Man judges according to outward and fallible Appearances, but God fearches the Reins and the Heart, and judges righteous Judgment.
Disciple.] O Lord, thou righteous Judge,
strong and patient, who understandest the Frailty and the Wickedness of Men, be thou my strong Rock, my Truit and Defence. For even in my own Conscience I dare not be too confident ; since
many things which to me are either unknown or for-
1 John iii. Heart, and knowest all things. Thus, Reason and Religion both convince me, I ought to behave my self; but, if at any time Passion and Frailty have exceeded in too nice and tender a Sense of these Things, pardon, I beseech thee, what is past, and enable me to be more resigned for the time to come. Thy Mercy alone will avail me more than all my laboured Excuses; and Pardon is what I rather chufe, than the most confident Testimony of my own Conscience. For, though I Joould know nothing by my self, yet am I not
I Cor. iv. hereby justified ; for he that judgeth me is the Lord: The Lord, who will one Day bring to light the bidden things of dishonesty, even those, which have escaped the Committer's own Observation. And therefore, if thou, Lord, Should'st be extreme to mark what is done amiss, no Flesh living Psal. cxliii...
Psal.cxxx.2. could be justified in thy sight.
Nothing too much to suffer for Eternal Life.
expect, but even impossible for thee to wish or ima, gine. Thy Toils will not continue very long, nor will thy Pain and Trouble always torment thee, Wait but a little longer, and look forward, and fee how glorious a Prospect opens it self: How swiftly the End of all thy Sufferings approaches ; and how suddenly Sorrow and Tumult vanish away. Even Time it self is not of everlasting Continuance; but that which is bounded within so very narrow a Space, as this short Span of Life, cannot in any fair Computation be counted long, or great. Proceed then in thy Duty with Vigor and undaunted Resolution; ply thy Work hard in my Vineyard, and fill the Station Į Have appointed thee to ; thy Wages are certain and Gen. xvii.
valuable, for I my self will be tby exceeding
great Reward. Persist in Writing, in Reading, in singing my Praises, in Lamenting thy own Sins, in filent Meditation, in Devout Prayer, in Fortitude and Patience. For the things prepard for them that love God, are richly worth these and greater Conflicts; all thou must do, all thou canst fuffer, are in no degree worthy to be compared with them. The Day is coming, and fixo in my unalterable Decree, adorn’d with the Triumphs of Joy and Peace; That mighty Revolution, when these alternate Successions of Day and Night shall cease; and everlasting uninterrupted Light shall shine for ez ver. There shall be Lustre infinite, Satisfactions unbroken,unconceivable, Reft eternal and above the Power of any future Danger. There shall be then noPlace left
for that melancholy Wish; O that thou Rom. vii.
wouldst deliver me from the Body of this Death! no Occcasion for that Complaint, Wois me, that
I am constrained to dwell with Mesech, and tą
For even the last Enemy shall be fubdued,
. Salvation then
and Life shall Reign for ever ; Sorrow and Anguilh, Sighs and Tears shall flee away; a Crown of Rejoycing put upon every Head, and thou shalt be happy in the sweet Society of Saints and Angels, the
Heb. xii. Spirits of Just Men made perfect, and the Afsembly of the First-born.
Oh! could'st thou now but see the Heavens open, and with the Ken of Mortal Eye behold the bright and everlasting Crowns of my Chosen ; Were thy Heart large enough to admit a juft Idea of their Trophies and Glories, whom once the World despised, and thought not worthy to live upon the Earth; thou then would'ft gladly embrace their Sufferings and Reproaches, abandon all thy vain Desires of Worldly Greatness, and disdain the perishing Pleasures of the present Life. Humility and Patience would then appear in all their native Beauties; and even AMiction and Ignominy display such Charms, as must attract thy Love, and make thee esteem the Reproaches of Christ greater Treasures and Gain, than all the Mar jesty and Honour, and most celebrated Reputation, that a mortal State is capable of..
Attend then seriously to these important Truths. For they, if considered and believed in good earnest, will stop thy Mouth, and effectually silence all thy Complaints. For fure the Sufferings of a Moment cannot be thought too dear a Price for Eternal Happi, ness in exchange. Surely the Kingdom of God is no trifling Concern. And when the losing or attaining this lies before thee, nothing can be too much to prevent that Lofs ; nothing a hard Bargain for that infinite Advantage. Grovel then upon the Earth no longer, but stand Erect, and lift thy Eyes and Heart to Heaven. See there the blessed Éffečts, the mighty Success, of all those sharp Conflicts, which my Saints, while in the Body, underwent; the End of all their Tryals and Adversities, their painful Şeverities and pious La&
I Cor. iv.
bours. These mortify'd afflicted. Men once reputed
the Filth of the World, and the Off-scouring
of all Things, the common Mark of Insolence and Malice, are now in perfect Joy; their Sorrows swallowed up in transporting Bliss and Comfort; their Dangers changed into secure Peace ; their Labours into Ease and sweet Repofe; their Persecutions and wrongful Accusations before the Bar of Men, into Thrones of Glory, where they fit and judge the World, and live, and rejoice, and reign with me for
CHA P. LIII, The Foys of Eternity, and Miseries of this
Disciple] O Bielo bright and glorious Day of E:
Blessed Mansions of the Heavenly Cir
ty! O ternal Light and Bliss! A Day that never declines ; & Sun that never sets, nor is obfcured by any fucceeding Night; but a State always chearful, always fixed, and secured from Change and Sorrow, from Danger and Decay. How do I pant and thirst after that happy Hour, when this Blessed Morning shall dawn and shed its Beams, and with a wondrous Lustre put an end to all the Darkness and Miseries of Mortality? It does indeed already shine in the Hearts and Hopes of those good Men, whose Conversation is even now in Heaven: But even theirs is but a distant Prospect, and fuch as, while they sojourn here, presents things only in a Glass. The Citizens and Inhabitants of thofe Blessed Regions see it with their naked Eye ; they feel and enjoy its Sweetness, and are all en lightned with its Rays; while the distreffed Sons of