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Laying up in store for Themselves a good Foundation
Preach'd at the Spittle, 1680.
Rules for the Conduct of ourselves, where we are
Vertue and Religion the only Means to make a Na-
Deut. v. 29. O that there were such an Heart in
Zeal for Religion, how to be govern'd.
Philip.iii. 10. That I may know him, and the Power
Rom. XIV. 19. Let us therefore follow after the Things that make for Peace. SHOSOEVER understandeth any
thing of the State of Christianity, W as it hath now been for fome Ages
in the World, will be easily con
vinced, that there is no one Point of our Religion more necessary to be daily Preached, to be earnestly pressed and infifted on, than that of Peace, and Love, and Unitys here recommended by the Apostle.
It hath fared (as the Learned Mr. Hales observed) with the Christian Religion in this Matter, as it did with the Jewish of old. The great and principal Commandment which God gave the Jews, and which (as they themselves teach) was the Foundation of all their Law,
was, to worship the God of Israel, and Him only to serve : Yet such was the Perverseness of that People, that This was the Commandment, that of all others, they could never be brought to Keep; but they were continually running into Idolatry, notwithstanding all the Methods that God made use of to reclaim them from that Sin. What the Worship of one Gud was to the Jews ; that Peace, and Love, and Unity, is to the Christians, even the Great distinguishing Lai and Character of their Profession. And yet, to the shame of Christians it may be fpoken, there is no one Commandment in all Christ's Religion, that has been so generally and so fcandalously violated among his Followers, as this. Witness the many bitter Feuds and Contentions that have so long embroiled Christendom; and the numerous Sects,and Parties gandCommunions, into which, at this Day, it stands divided.
And, God knows, this is a Thing that cannot be sufficiently lamented among ourselves : For though, in many Respects, we are the Happiest Nation in the World; and particularly in this, that we have the Advantage of all others, both as to the Conftitution of our Church, and the Purity of Christ's Doctrine, professed therein : Yet in this point of Schisms, and Die visions, and Religious Quarrels, we are as ua: happy, if not more, than any.
Whether ever we shall see that blessed Day, when these our Breaches will be healed; and that an End being put to our unaccountable Separations, and the Unchristian Animosities they are the Occasion of, we shall all join to