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miserable for negle&ing such exhortations. O Sirs, we do not envy your worldly Happiness; we dare assure you, that it is not any grudge we have against your prosperity, that makes us put you in mind of these unwelcome Lessons ; we have a God calling upon us, to stop you your earneftness for the World: Woe to us, if we give you no warning! Woe to you, if ye take no warning! If making provision for the Flesh, to fulfil the Lusts thereof, would make you happy; if Rioting and Drunkenness, Chambering and Wantonness, and rolling in all the Pleasures that you Flesh does promise, and your Fancy pay, could contribute any thing to your felicity; folacing your felves in the wanton Streams of sensual Delights would lead you into Paradise, we promise you we would not moleft or diIturb you in your ways; nay, if you had noc Souls to be saved, did your Spirits die with your Bodies, we would not fint you in your Jollities. But oh! can we read, how the Wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of Men, and see
you fall a Prey to that Indignation? Can we read how Tribulation and Anguish shall certainly fall upon every Soul that doch evil, and not speak to you to prevent it? Can we read, how the Lord Jesus will e'er long come from Heaven in Flames of Fire, to take vengeance of those who have continued to disobey his Gospel, and to punish them with everlasting deftrudtion from the Presence of the Lord, and from the Glory of his Power, and not call to you, Repen', for the Kingdoni of Heaven is at hand?
Can we read, how the unprofitable Servant, that made not use of his Talent, but buried it under ground, and would not watch or make himself ready to meet his Master, shall be thrown into outer Darkness, where there is howling and gnashing of Teeth, and not beg of you to trim your Lamps, and arise from the Dead, that Christ may give you Light ? Can we remember, how many Millions lie now roaring under the fears and terrors of their own Consciences in another World, that would not be persuaded to part with their darling bosom Sins, till Death tore them away from them, and not testifie unto you, left you also come into that place of torment? Can we see you stand upon the brink of destru&ion, and be focruel, as not to acquaint you with the bottomless Gulph that's underneath? Would you have us to be as tyrannical to you, as you are to your own Souls? Or would you have us leap into everlasting burnings with you, for not reclaiming you from venturing into that fire?
Sirs, what is it that doth discourage you from a fincere Consideration of your Spiritual Condition? What are you afraid of? Why do you loiter? Why do you deliberate whether you shall or no ? Why do you dispute the Cause? Why do ye stand musing? What hinders you? Is there any impediment that you may not remove, if you will? Had you been but a quarter of an hour in Hell, would not you call all those Men Sots and Fools, that now excuse their wilful neglect of this Work? Would not you see the vanity of their Pretences? Would not you confess, that all
those pretended clogs are mere Cobwebs, which may be broke through with the greatest ease? Would you be frighted from this Duty by any temporal Losses, asnow you are? Are you afraid Men will laugh at you for being serious ? Had not you better be laughed at here, than be fcoroed by God and his holy Angels to all Eternity? Had not you better be jeer'd here, than have the great King of Heaven laugh at your endless Calamity, and mock when your everlasting fears do come upon you? If a Fool laughs at you, do you regard it? And why should you regard such Mens fcorn any more than the laughter of Fools? Alas they are distempered in their Brains, they fee not the things that belong to their Peace, they know not what Religion means! Will any Man give over the Itudy of Divinity, or Law, or Physick, because the ignorant Peasant sneers at him? Will a Tradesman leave his Calling, because such a Man makes Songs and Ballads upon't? If you are persuaded, that Consideration, and longing after your Spiritual Concerns, is the way to real Happiness, will you be miserable, because another Man will not have you to be happy? Will that Man that laughs at you for despising the World, fave you harmless at the Day of Judgment ? Will he bail you out, when God's Thunders shall break out upon all disobedient Sinners? Will he undertake for you, when God will be abused and mocked no longer, and the Day of his Wrath doth come? Will he be your Advocate, when you shall have your Consciences pleading against you? Alas, poor forlorn Wretches ! He
will not be able to answer for himself, how then should he plead your cause? And if he can do you no fervice,cannot secure you against the anger of the Almighty, why will you be persuaded by the Anger or Displeasure of a Man, though never so great and powerful, to omit that, on which your eternal welfare doth depend?
Sinner, as light as thou makest now of this serious reflection on thy Spiritual concerns, thou must consider them one time or other: If thou wilt not here, God will force thee to do it in Hell, whether thou wilt or no: Here Consideration may do good, but there it will but aggravate thy torments; here it may snatch thee like a Brand out of the Fire, there it will increase thy Flames; here it may be a means to enlighten thee, there it will be a ineans to confound thee for ever. Proud, Self-conceited Man, who canst find no time for serious Consideration here! In Hell thou wilt have time enough, and Oh,
fad Hours will it cause to consider, how thou hast mifpent thy time, how thou haft flung away so many precious Hours upon thy unlawful pleasures, how thou haft derided such a Sermon, hardened thy Heart upon such a Discourse, slighted God's motions to Repentance, smothered the checks of chine own Conscience, preferred the World before Heaven, obeyed Man more than thy Creator, suffered every trivial outward Respect to call thee away from Devotion, mistrusted God's Providence, taken his Name in vain, laughed at the wholsom Counsels of thy Parents and Teachers, despised thy Neighbours, cen
sured their Axions more than thy own, taken thy fill of Sin, been weary of following Chrift, backward to any thing that's good, delighted with nothing but Vanity and Folly, dishonoured God, disgraced Religion ; exposed it to contempt and scorn,drawn others into Vice, laugh'd Meninto Folly, dragged them into Hell, murthered their Souls as well as thy own, neglected thy Prayers, disregarded the Poor, oppressed the Needy, been greedy after the World, and undervalued the Pains and CoftGod did bestow to entice thee to enter into his Rest! At this time thou'lt be forced to consider, how great a Blessing thou hast refused, what comfort thou halt deprived thy self of, what a wise course those took, that would not be persuaded by the vain careless World, to cast God's Law be hind them. But alas! these Considerations would then be too late; time was, when thou mightest have considered the odiousness of Sin, and turned from thy evil ways; time was, when thou mightest have considered the absolute neceflity of despising the World, and dedicated thy self, thy Children, thy Life and Wealth to God's Service; time was, when thou mightest have considered, that God's Mercy and Patience did lead thee to Repentance, and so have turned to God with all thy Heart, and this had been to secure God's Favour, and to enter thy name in the Book of Life; but in Hell such Thoughts do but gnaw and fing the more, there they do but augment thy Sorrow and Indignation against thy self; there they do but make thee weary of thy Life, and the worst of