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od's time for yoted from your grow for its death come; and od's way and perfect cance be fully one momci, o defire
. But I will not hold you tunger here, I have only a few things
The thiogs I desire, are,
Secondly, I desire, that though you aod your afflictions had
surely they will have your blessing too at their valediction. And
Thirdly, 1 heartily wish that these fearching afflictions may
Fourthly, I wish that all the love and delight you bestowed on your little one, maģpow be placed, to your greater advantage, upon Jesus Chrift; and that the stream of your affection to him may be so much the stronger, as there are now fewer channels for it to be divided into. If God will not have any part of your happiness to lie in children, then let it wholly lie in himself. If the jealousy of the Lord hath removed that which drew away too much of your heart from him, and hath spoken by this rod, faying, Stand aside, child, thou are in my way, and fillest more room in thy parents hearts than belongs to the
Othcn deliver up all to him, and say, Lord, take the whole heart entirely, and undividedly, to thyself. Henceforth let there be no partiog, shariog, or dividing of the affections betwixt God and the creature, let all the streams meet, and ceatre in thee, oply.
Fifthly, That you may be strengthened with all might in the inner man ; to all patience, that the peace of God may keep your hearts and minds. Labour to bring your hearts to a meek submission to the rod of your Father. We had fathers of the Aeth, who corrected us, and we gave them reverence ; shall we not much more be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live? Is it comely for children to contest, and strive with their father? Or is it the way to be freed from the yoke, by struggling under it? O that your hearts might be in a like frame with his that said, Lord, thou shalt beat, and I will bear. It was a good observation that one made, Anima sedendo et quiescendo fit fapiens : The soul grows wise by fisting still and quiet under the rod. And the apostle calls those excellent fruits which the saints gather from their sanctified afflictions, " The peace'“ able fruits of righteousness,” Heb. xii. 11. . .
Lastly, My heart's desire, and prayer to God for you, is, that you may die daily to all visible enjoyments, and by these frequent converses with death in your family, you may be prepared for your owo change and dissolution, when it thall come.
O friends ! how many graves have you and I feen opened for our dear relations? How oft hath death come up into your wiodows, and summoned the delight of your eyes ? It is but a little while, and we shall go to them; we and they are diftioguished but by fhort intervals. .
Transivere patres, fimul hinc tranfibimus omnes. Our dear parents are gone, our lovely and defirable children are gone, our bofom relations, that were as our owo fouls, are gone ; and do not all these warning-knocks at our doors acquaint us, that we must prepare to follow thortly after them ?
O that by these things our own death might be both more easy, and familiar to us ; the oftaer it visits us, the better we should be acquainted with it; and the more of our beloved relations it removes before us, the less of either snare or intanglemeot remains for us when our tura comes.
My dear friends, my feth, and my blood, I beseech you, for religion's sake, for your own sake, and for my fake, whose come
ført is, in great part, bound up in your prosperity, and wel fare, that you read frequently, ponder seriously, and apply believingly these scripture confolations and directions, which, in some hafte, I have gathered for your use; and the God of all consolation be with you. ,
:: I am,
Your most endeared brother,
Luke vii 13. And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion
on her, and said to her, Weep pot. :
To be above the stroke of paffion, is a condition equal to
1 angels: to be in a state of sorrow, without the sense of forrow, is a disposition beneath beasts: but duly to regulate our forrows, and bound our passions under the rod, is the wisdom, duty, and excellency of a Christian. He that is without natural affections, is deservedly ranked amongst the worst of heathens; and he that is able rightly to manage them, deserves to be numbered with the best of Christians. Though, when we are fanctified we put on the divine nature, yet, till we are glorified, we put not off the infirmities of our human na. ture. .
Whilft we are within the reach of troubles, we cannot be
: How apt are we to tranfgress the bounds, both of reafon
and religion, under a sharp affliction, appears, as in most mens ' experience, so in this woman's example, to whose excesive
* forrow Christ puts a stop in the text : « He saw her, and had * « compaflion on her, and laid to her, Weep not."
The lamentations and wailings of this distressed mother, moved the tender compassions of the Lord in beholding them, and stirred. up more pity in his heart for her, than could be in her heart for her dear, and only foni. . In the words we are to consider, both the condition of thie woman, and the counsel of Christ, with respect unto it.
First, T'he condition of this woman, which appears to be very dolorous and diftreffed ; her groans and tears moved and melted the very heart of Christ to hear and behold them: 66 When he saw her, he had com pallion cn her."
How fad an hour it was with her when Chiift met her, ap. pears by what is fo diflinally remarked by the evangelist, in ver, iż. where it is said, “Now, when they came nigh to the « gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, " the only son of his mother, and fhe was a widow, and much « people of the city, was with her.”
In this one verse, divers licart piercing circumstances of this affliction are noted.
First, It was the death of a fon *, To bury a child, any child, muft needs rend the heart of a tender parent; for whại are children but the parent multiplied ? A child is a part of the parent made up in another skin : Lut to lay a fon in the grave, a fon who continues the name, and supports the fami. ly; this was ever accounted a very great amidion. * Secondly, This fon was not carried trom the craddle to the coilin, nor stripped out of its swathing, to be wrapped in its "winding-cloth. Had he died in his infancy, before he had en
gaged affection, or raised expectation, the affliction had no been fo pungent, and cutting as now it was ; death finore the son in the flower, and prime of his time. He was a man, (faith the evangelift) ver. 12. a young man, (as Christ calls him) 'ver. 14. he was now arrived + at that age which made him ca
* eines essayisos douos el tervdov yover i. e. To be parents to chil. dren, is the firmel tye of affection. Graec, Con. .,
t He died in his youth, and was therefore the more to be lamented, because he was cut off in the lower of his age, uoto which 'he was conducted from a child, by the great care and labour of his parents. Dion. Cat. on the place .
pable of yieldiag his mother all that comfort which had been the expectation, and hope of many years, and the reward and fruit of many cares, and labours : yet then, when the endearments were greatest, and her hopes highest, even in the fower of his age, he is cut off.
Thus Bafil bewailed the death of his fan: *'I once had a · son, who was a young man, my only successor, the solace of ( my age, the glory of his kind, the prop of my family, arOrived to the endearing age; then was he snatched away from ' me by death, whose lovely voice but a little before I heard,
who lately was a pleasant spectacle to his parent.'
Reader, if this hath been thine own condition, as it hath been his that writes it, I need say no more to convince thee, that it was a sorrowful state indeed, Christ met this tender mother in.
Thirdly, And which is yet more, he was not only a fön, but an only fon : so you find, in ver. 12. “ He was the only son os of his mother t;" one in whom all her hopes and counforts, of that kind, were bound up. For, Omnis in Ascanio siat chari cura parentis, Virgil. All her affections were contracted into this one object. If we have never fo many children, we know not which of them to spare; if they stand, like olive-plants, about our tables, it would grieve us to see the least twig among them broken down. But surely the death of one out of many, is much more tolerable than all in one I.
Hence it is noted in fcripture as the greatest of earthly for.. rows, Jer. vi. 26. “O daughter of my people, gird thee with “ fackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes. Make thee mourn, “ ing as for an only son, molt bitter lamentation.". Yea, so deep and penetrating is this grief, that the Holy Ghost borsows it to express the deepest spiritual troubles by, it, Zech.
Ff2' . . ,
* Filius mihi erat, adolefcens, plus vitae fucceffor, folatinm Penectae, gloria generis, Ans aequalium, fulcrum domus, aetatem graliofilimum agebat ; hic raptus periit, qui' paulo ante incundam vocem edebat, et jucundiffimum speedculum parentis oculis crat.
+ She would have borde his death more patiently, had he no been an only fon; or if he had had but another left behind him to mitigate her sorrow. Ambrose.
As there is nothing dearer ihan an only son, fo that grief upon the account of his death, must be the greatett of all. Gurih, in she place,