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not be denied thee: from this time forward thy Name shall be inrolled among the Favourites of Heaven, and in thy Soul, as in Jacob's Ladder, the Angels shall be continually ascending and descending, and thy Head, like Gideon's Fleece, shall be watered with the dew of Heaven, while the unbelieving World shall be dry; and all this İhall be thine, if my Love, my Mercy, my Kindness can prevail with thee, and engage thee to think seriously, what thou must do to please God, and to be happy for ever. O Sinner, had those who now lie (weltring under the burning Wrath of Almighty God such an offer as this, how would they leap, and triumph, and agree to so reasonable a condition, and thank God upon their bended knees, day and night, and praise him without intermission, that he would vouchsafe to receive them, on no harder terms than these! O Sinner, is thy Heart a Stone, that it doth not diffolve at this gracious Message ? Can the Rock hold out against these bowels of Compassion? Poor stubborn Wretch! were not thy Heart all Steel, were not thy Conscience feared, how couldst thou forbear being prick'd at the Heart? Hadst thou but the lealt spark of good-nature left in thee, what might noc these golden Chains, these Silken Strings, these Cords of Love, do with thy immortal Soul? The only reason that the Servants that Benhadad had, to humble themselves to the King of Ifrael, was this, We have heard that the Kings of Israel are merciful Kings. Sinner, haft not thou both heard and seen, and feest it to this day, that the true King of Israel is a
merciful King? And will not this prevail with thee, to throw thy self down at his Feet, and kiss his Scepter, and consider thy imprudence, in deviating so long from the end of ihy Creation and Redemption, and make thee contented to part with all the strong holds of iniquiry within thee, and with all imaginations that exalt themselves against the obedience of Christ Jesus.
O donot tell me, that thou wilt most certainly bechink thy selffome timehereafter, when fickness and approaching death shall take thee off from thy worldly businesses; Vain foolish Man! How doft thou know thou shalt live till co-Morrow? For, What is thy life? even a vapour that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away. How many thousands are cut off as they are going up the Hill, in the Noon of their days, before half their race be run; and what Patent haft thou from Heaven, that it shall not be thus with thee? God laughs, at that Repentance, which Men begin, when they can keep Sin and the World no longer ; he sees it is fors ced, and squeezed, and weak, and feeble; and will God accept of thy Devotion, when thou haft exhausted the Cream and Marrow of thy Bones in the Devil's service? How, Sinner! Consider thy ways upon thy Death-bed? Mad Man! Dost thou know what Consideration means? The Soul must be in its full strength, that considers the sinfulness, and fad confequences of her life. Doft not thou see, how in sickness The Soul sympathizes with the Body? How the Mind languishes with the Flesh? "How weak how feeble the Thoughts are upon a Death
bed? How the Mind is employed with thinking of the pain, and anguish, and uneasiness of the Body? How Mens weakness scarce gives them leave to repeat the Lord's Prayer intire, without interruption? How fetling their Eftates, and disposing of their worldly Affairs, and Sorrow and Vexation that they have nor_managed their fecular Concerns with greater Prudence, takes up their Cogitations? And how transitory and fuperficial Men's Thoughts of Sin, and of another World are, except they have gotten a habit of Heavenly-mindedness, by a long and constant practice of Holiness, in the time of their Health and Liberty before? And doth Salvation deserve no more, but a few flight and skin-deep reflections, when thou lielt a dying?. Canst thou have such low Thoughts of everlasting Glory, as to let Consideration of it come behind all the satisfactions of the flesh? Canst thou entertain such pitiful sneaking Conceits, concerning that mighty Heaven, God, out of his singular and unparallela Mercy, hath condescended to promise to his Saints, as to delay thy Contemplations, and thy taking a view of it, till thy Heart-strings break, and thy Throat begins to rattle, and the House is falling? Go ye curfed into everlasting fire, prepared for the Devil and his Angels. Alas! when Men are dying, the time of working is past, that's the Night wherein no Man can work; that's the time indeed to reap the comfort of our former conscientious Practices, but not the time to work out our Salvation in; that's the time of rejoycing, because
our Redemption draws nigh, not the time of setting out from theGates of Hell; that's the time to finish our course with Joy, not the time to begin a holy Life. Alas! che strength and vigour which must be used in a heavenly Converfation is then gone, and Men are just upon the point of reckoning with God; their Accounts muft then be ready, not to make up: So that if thou art not ready now to take thy Spiritual concerộs into serious Consideration, thy heart will be hardned every day more and more, and the longer thou livest, the lefs mind thou wilt have to set about it; and if thou doeft not think it worth thy trouble, to spare now and then an hour from thy Worldly bulinesses, to mind this one thing necessary, thou doest as good as tell God, that thou wilt have none of his Heaven, and judgest thy self unworthy of Eternal Life.
O Sinner, the present time is the day of Salvation, this is the acceptable time, now ftrike, and thy sins will fall; now ftrive, and the Crown will be thine; now fall to work, and promise thy self Eternal Rest: Thou canst call no time thine own but the present, that's only in thine hands; make use of that, and save thy self from this untoward Generation. Extricate thy self from the delusions of the flesh, take courage, and be gone; stay not in Sodom, now accept of Mercy, now lay up thy Treasure, and secure thy right to the Tree of Life ; now remember thy Creator, and God will remember thee when he makes up his Jewels, and spare thee, as a Man would spare his own Son that serves him.
Hear then this, Men, Fathers, and Brethren! the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath fent us to you, to tell you, that his Supper is ready, and the doors are open, and the Guests are come, and yet there is room; and that you may fill the room which is left, is the Message we come to acquaint you withal from him who delights not in the death of a sinner, but would have him turn and live. Hear this, ye Great Ones, ye Nobles, ye Mighty Men, and consider your ways: Consider whether that voluptuous life you lead, is like that life which that Saviour, in whom you pretend to believe, doth prescribe in his Gospel? Consider whether you are not obliged to practise all those Virtues and Duties that the meaner sort perform? And whether in framing to your selves a new way to Heaven, a way different from what the Word of God doth represent, you are like to be happy in those Castles of Air you build, and like to arrive to that Glory which you wish for, and hope to be received into? Consider what your pride and sensuality. will at last conclude in? And whether you will dare to brave it at the great Tribunal, as now you do on Earth, where you have no body io controul you? Ye that are Magistrates, whom Providence hath placed over others to execute Justice, and to Thew a good example, Consider your ways. Consider how heavy your connivance at the most notorious fins, fins that offer to pluck even God out of his Throne, will lie upon your Consciences one day! Consider what hurt you