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of a good (jamefleri unless he fend it bac\again "frith equal Vigour and dexterity. Whereupon out of an unfeigned fenfiblenejs ofyeur respective kindnef r0andever obliging courses es J began to consider Jhow I might serram reciprocare5^rf giye some reciprocal testimony of those manifold respe&s I ow you; the which in my Weak judgment Icon. ceived I could not more seasonably perform, than in a Subject or Argument of Gratitude, to which 1 have at present taken the boldness to give my self the Honour to prefix your 3\{ame; which if you design favourably to accept, I have all I aimed at9 and shall ever acknowledge my self

Your most obliged
Friend and Servant

_____ J. K.

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Psal. 116. 12.

What stall I render unto the Lord for all his Benefits towards me?

Rosses and Losses, Persecutions and Afflictions, as they are, for the most part, the lot and portion of j the Righteous; so are they the lists and theatres too, wherein to exercise their Graces,to win the greater honour unto themselvs, and a nearer alliance with God. As in our material Building the Timber and Stones can have no sutable place, until the Skilful Artificer hath throughly hewen, cut, and squared them : Even so in that spiritual and heavenly Building, f not made with hands J we cannot be Afoui £cSvta, quick and Living Stones? unless we be first hewen, cut, and squared (as it were) with sundry tribulations arid afflictions. Again, as in the one, the greatest and goodliest piece of j Timber endures the greatest stress, as being most entrusted and charged with the weight

and

i Pet. 2. 5

and burden of the Building: So likewise in that other, it pleaseth God oft-times to lay the hardest pressure, and heaviest weight of affliction and misery, upon his best Saints, and most dearly beloved Children. But, Why doth he so? Why dooh he most afflict, and lay his hand heaviest on, those that are nearest and dearest unto him? St. Austin will resolve this Question; Ideojusti premuntur (saith he ) utpreffi clament, c lamantes exaudiantur: To no other end and purpose doth God suffer his untainted Jo\fiphs and spotless Daniels to be flung into pits and prisons, dens and dungeons of] deepest calamity, than that they should de profundis clamare, from those depths call and cry unto him, and in his good time find1 relief and inlargement from him.

If we look back, and reflect our thoughts a while on the primitive World, fee we may the hands of a cruel and accursed Cain mercilefly butchering his innocent Brother Abel:

Fraterno primi madueruntsanguine muri. And looking but a little further, we may descry an Esau's feet swiftly posting on in

the

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