Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

dition here, and the more dreadful state of his Soul hereafter.

Did the Swearer but seriously consider, what a foolish, weak, fordid, and impertinent thing it is,

to mingle Profanations of God's Name with his i Speeches, he would soon take pains to avoid it,

and set a mulet upon himself for running upon the same Rock again. Would he but think,good God ! how irrationally do I a& ! If I believe there is a God, what can I fancy that God to be ? Sure I must fancy him to be fuch a Deity as the Heathens worshipped, one deaf, and dumb, and blind a Deity of Brass, or Stone, that I can securely play withal; a Deity that's not at all jealous of his Hô. nour and Glory, and can sit down under every Affront that's put upon him ; should the meanest of my Servants make use of my name in every trifling discourse in every foolish story, and when ever he is petcih, or peevish, I lhould take it very ill ac his hands; and why should I think God will endure that from me, which I would not allow in my Foorboy, or Valet de Chambre ? I must confess there is no bait, no temptation to this Sin: He that robs upon the Highway, is tempted by an apparene Profit : The Pirate hath a rich Prize in his Eye, the Ship that comes laden with Spices from the East, with Silks from the Levant, with precious Drugs from the Indies, whets his Appetite; that the Covetous hugs his Gold, and pays Adoration to his Money, as to his Saint, that he beholds the Sun when it shines, and the Moon walking in brightness, no marvel, for he fees it hath a kind of Almighty Power, can make Foes Friends, unV 2

lock

lock Gates, break the strongest Bars, give him ada mission into company of the highest Quality, &c. The Dissembler hopes he may fave his Credit, and Reputation, and Fortune, by not speaking what he thinks; but in Swearing, I can have no prospect of advantage, and I must only act the Devil, love Sin for Sin's fake; Fornication and Adultery to yet pretend some Pleasure, but this I cannot do in Swearing; the greatest Masters of Pleasures never reckoned this Sin as an ingredient of Carnal Satisfaction; and thô there is no real necessity for any Sin, yet for this I can pretend no necessity at all; Let them be ashamed, faith the Prophet, which transgress without cause, Psal. 25. 3. Not that any Man, who fins, hath a just cause for finning, but some Sins, even in the Devil's Judgment, Men have no apparent cause for them, for they sin without temptation, and such a Sin is Swearing: Were a Koife set to my Throat, were my Life in danger, were I to die presently upon the spot, if I did not swear, I might have fome colour of Argument for it, but when there is nothing compels me to it, but my own wilfulness, I deserve no pity, no compassion, if God lashes me with the feverest Thunders. There is no Sin that's more in my power to avoid, thân this; the most barbarous Heathen can shun it, and fhall I pretend impossibility ? I see it engages me to very great uncivility, I cannot but offend all sober company by it, they must needs be uneasie in my Society,and to hear God abused, and how ill Ido wish to my own Soul, cannot but grate upon a heart, that hath any fense of Religion or Honesty; nor do I see, that

people

[ocr errors]

people believe me any whit the more for Swearing, but I render my self ridiculous, and make People think me dishonest,perfidious,and treacherous, who make so little conscience of what I say: How can any Man trust me,that hears me abuse the bestand dearest Friend I have? Or,what credit can any Man give to me, that sees me so treacherous to God, to whom I owe all I have? How shall

any

Man be fure, that I'am honeft, that sees me deal so disin. genuously with him,who gives me my Meat in due season? How can any Man believe, that I will be faithful to him, that cannot be faithful to him who hath laid the greatest obligations upon me? Have I no other way to prove my self a Gentleman, but by this sordid course? Is this it, that will bring reputation to my Family ? Is this it that must give me credit among Persons of my own Rank: Cannot I be a Cavalier, except I am uncivil to my God? Must I buy the favour of Men at so dear a rate? Is it worth no less than the displeasure of him, who fills Heaven and Earth with his Presence? Can there be greater ingratitude in the World, than I am guilty of by this Sin? The Air I breath in the Earth I tread upon, the Ground which nourishes me, the Fire that warms me,are all the Gift of God; and,is this the returo I make, to take his Name in vain, that supports and maintains me? Do I make nothing of God's threatnings? How often doth he manitest his Displeasure against this Sin in his Word! And can I think, I am not concerned in the Commination? What hope can I have, that Christ's Blood will fave me, when I swear it away, and thrust it from me with both Arms? How justly may God

damn

V 3

[ocr errors]

damn me, that do so often wish for it! and is there any thing in nature so barbarous to it self, as I am in praying to God, as it were, to deliver me up into the clutches of the Devil ? No Devil would with himself so ill, as I do my own Soul ; and is there nothing in the inhumanity and horror of the Sin, to discourage and terrifie me from it ? Nay, I do hereby teach others to fin, instruct those that hear me, to follow my Example ; I do sow Sin, and spread the Contagion, infect my Neighbour, give an ill Example to others; and is this agreeable to the Character of a Christian, that is to walk in Wisdom toward them that are without and to give no occasion to the Adversary to speak reproachfully?

Did the Swearer but ruminate on these diffua. five Arguments, how would it cool his courage ! But neglecting that, he neglects his restorative, and speaks, as if he would be revenged on his Maker for giving him a Tongue.

How soon would the Bladder of Pride break, did the proud Man but consider that he is Dust, and what a wretched finful Creature he is, and how much worse than other Men, and how much he forgets the Humiliation of the Son of God, who, being in the form of God, thought it no robbery to be equal with God, but made himself of no reputation, becoming obedient to the Death of the Cross; how odious this lofty Spirit is in the sight of God; how amiable Humility; how God detests the one, and embraces the other how Pride keeps out the Operations and Influences of God's Spirit, and how the Holy Ghost

re.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

refuses to come and lodge in that Soul, which
swells with vain conceits of its own worth ; how
Pride keeps him a stranger to himself; how it
makes his Neighbour hate him, raises him Ene-
mies, and makes him an object of Contempt and
Scorn ; how all the Gifts and Blessings, and Privi-
leges he enjoys, are but the effects of God's
Charity; how the stately Fabrick, which his Soul
doth animate, must Thortly return to the Earth
from which it was taken; what condescention
God uses towards him; how God, who commands
Heaven and Earth, becomes an humble Suitor to
his Creatures, and instead of confurning, courts
them to yield to his Requests and Injunctions
how noble and generous it is to imitate him, who
is Eternally happy in himself. O my God! can
I look upon the great Example of thy Conde-
scention, and swell into contempt of others! Can
I see Heaven bow to Dust and Alhes, and superci-
liously scorn him that stands on even ground with
me! What have I that I have not received? Why
then should I boast, as if I had not received it : O
God! I fee thee content to be born in a Stable,
to lye in a Manger, to be cloathed with Rags, and
to submit to the hardest usage: Am I thy Servant,
and do I refuse to transcribe thy Lowliness on
my Mind,and Behaviour? Hell is the Kingdom
of Pride, and shall I become a Subject of that
Empire: Shall I make Lucifer my Teacher : Or
Shall those Spirits who watch my Ruin, be my
Tutors ? Can I see my God approach my Soul
in an humble posture, and look high? Can I)
see the best of Beings lay by his Grandeur, to

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

V 4

con

« PreviousContinue »