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of saith, be so sweet, and no price can be put upon it, nothirg oa earth taken in exchange for it; what must a whole eternity, in the immediate and full visions of that blessed sace in heaven, be 1 Well then, if such sights as these, immediately succeed the fight you have on earth, either by sense of things natural, or by reason of things intellectual, or by saith of things spiritual, who that believes the truth, and expects the fulfilling of such promises as these, would not be willing to have his eyes closed by death, as soon as God shall please? I have read of a holy man that had sweet communion with God in prayer, who in the close of his duty cried out, claudimini, ocuh met, claudimini, &c. Bejbut, 0 my eyes, be shut; you jball never fee any thing on earth like that J have now seen. Ah! little do the friends of dead believers think what visions of God, what ravishing sights of Christ, the fouls of their friends have, when they are closing their eyes with tears.

Argum. 8. The consideration of the evil days that are to come, Jbouldmake the people of God willing to accept of an hiding place in the grave, as a specialfavour from God.

It is accounted an act of savour by God, Isa. lvii. i, a. to be taken away from the evil to come. There are two kinds of evils to come, the evil of fin, and the evil ofsufferings. Sins to come are terrible to gracious hearts, when temptations fhall beat their height, and strength. Oh, what warping and shrinking, what dissembling, yea, downright denying the known truths and ways of God, may you see every-where? Many consciences will thea be wounded and walled? Many scandals and rocks of offence will be rolled intg the way of godliness: Christ will be exposed, and put to open fhame. Should we only be spectators of such • tragedies as these, it were enough to overwhelm a gracious and tender heart. But what upright heart is there without sears and jealousies of being brought under the guilt of these evils in itself, as well as the fhame and grief for them in others? Oh! it were a thousand times better for you to die in the purity and integrity of your consciences, than to protract a miserable lise without them. Oh J think what a world it is you are like to leave behind you, in respect of that to come!

And as there are many evils of sin to come, so there are mans evils of sufferings coming on: "The days of visitation are com"ing on, the days of recompence are come, and Israel fhall "know it," Hos. ix. 7. All the sufferings you have yet met with, have been in books and histories: You never saw the martyrdom of the saints, but in the pictures and stories; but you will find it quite another thing to be the subjeSs of these cruelties, than to be the mere readers or relators of them. 'Tis one thing tcT lee the painted lion on a sign-post, and another to meet the living lion roaring upon you. Ah! little do we imagine how, she hearts of men are convulsed, what sears, what faintings invade their spirits, when they are to meet the King of terrors, in the frightful formalities of a violent death.

The consideration of these things will discover to you the reason of that strange wish of Job, chap. xiv. 13. "Oh that thou "wouldst hide me in the grave; that thou wouldst keep me in "secret till thy wrath be past!" And it deserves a serious thought, that when the holy Ghost had, in Rev. xiv. 9, 10, 11, 12. described the miserable plight of those poor souls, who being overcome by their own seats and the love of this world, should plunge themselves first into a deep guilt, by compliance with Antichrist, and receiving his mark; then into a hell upon earth, the remorse and horror of their own consciences, which gives them no rest, day nor night; heitnmediately subjoins, ver. 13." Blessed are the "dead that die in the Lord; yea, from henceforth, faith the "Spirit," <bc. Oh! it is a special blessing and favour to be hid out of the way of thofe temptations and torments, in a seasonable and quiet grave.

Argum. 9. Yoursixed aversation and unwillingness to die, -will .provoke Cod to imbitter your lives -with much more afflictions than you have yet felt, or -wouldfeel, if your hearts were mare mortisied and weaned in this point.

You cannot think of your own deaths with pleasure, no nor yet with patience. Well, take heed, lest this draw down such trouble upon you, as shall make you at last to fay with Job, chap. X> 1. " My loul is weary of iny lise;" an expression much like that, % Sam. i. 9. " Anguish is come upon me, because my lise "Is whole in me. My soul is hardened, or become cruel against my lise, as the Chaldee renders it.

There is a twofold weariness of lise; one from an excellency of spirit, a noble principle, the ardent love of Jesus Christ, Jihil.i. 23. " I desire to be dissolved, and to be with Christ." Anothcr from the mere pressures, of affliction and anguish of spirit, under heavy and successive strokes from the hand of God and men. Is it not more excellent and desirable to groan for death under a pressure of love to Christ, than of affliction from Christ?

I am convinced that very many of our afflictions come upon this score and account, to make us willing to die.

Is it not fad that God is forced to bring death upon all our comfortable and desirable things in this world, before he can gain our consents to be gone? Why will you put God upon fitch work as this? Why cannot he have your hearts at a cheaper rate? If you could die, many of your comforts, for ought I know, might live. Had Joab come to Absalom when he siilit For him the first or second time, Absalom had never set his field of barley on fire, 2 Sam. xiv. 30. And were you more obedient to the will of God in this manner, it is likely he would not consume your health, and estates, and relations, with such heavy strokes, as he hath done, and will yet farther do except yourr wills be more compliant.

Alas! to cut off your comforts one after another, and make you live a groaning lise, the Lord hath no pleasure in it; but he had rather you should lose these things, than that he should lose your hearts on earth, or company in heaven: Impatient aegrotus crudelem facit nudicum.

Argum. 10. The decree of death cannot he reversed, nor it there any other ordinary passage for the soul into glory, hut through the gates of death. Heb. ix. 27 "It is appointed for "all men once to die, but after that the judgment.'1

There is but one way to pass out of the obscure suffocating lise in the womb, into the more free and nobler lise' in the world, viz. through the agonies of birth: and there is ordinarily but one way to pass from this sinning, groaning lise we live in this world, to the enjoyment of God and the glory above, viz. through the agonies of death. You must cast off this mean, this vile body, before you can be happy. Heaven cannot come down to you, you cannot see God and live, Exod. xxxiii. 20. It would certainly confound and break you to pieces, like an earthen pitcher, should God but ray forth his glory upon you in the state you now are; and it is sure you cannot expect the extraordinary favour of such a transtation as Enoch had, Heb. xi. 5. or as those believers, (hall have, that shall be found alive at Christ's coming, 1 Thess. iv. 17. You must go the common road that all the saints go; but tho' you cannot avoid, you must sweeten it, God will not reverse his decree, but you may, aud ought to arm yourselves against the sears of it. Ahasuerus would not recal the proclamation he had emitted against the Jews, but he gave them full liberty to take up arms to desend themselves against their enemies. It is much so here, the sentence cannot be revoked; but yet God gives you leave, yea, he commands you to arm yourselves against death, and defy it, and trample it under the seet of faith. d

'. Arg: 11. When you sind your hearts relutlate at the thoughtt of leaving the body, and the comforts of this -world, then confides Vol. III. Bbb

- 'hoiv .willingly and chearsully 'jessus Christ left heaven, and the Sofom of his Father, to come do-urn to this '-world for your sakes, Pr.ov. viii. 30, 3 1. PJ'al. xl. 7. Lo, I come, &c.

O compare the frames of your hearts with his, in this point, and shame yourselves out of ib unbecoming a temper of spirit.

(1.j He left heaven, and all the delights and gHiry of it, to come down to this world to beabased and humbled to the lowest; you leave this world of fin and misery to ascend to heaven, . to be exalted to the highest. He came hither to be impoverished, you go thither to be enriched, 2 Cor, viii. 9. yet he caaw willingly, and we go grudgingly.

.(2./ He came from heaven to earth, to be made sin for is, 2 Cor. v. 21. we go from earth to heaven, to be fully and everlastingly delivered from sin^ yet he came more willingly to bear our fins, than we go to be delivered from them. . , ^3.) He came to take a body of flesh, to suffer and die in, Irleb. ii. 24 you leave your bodies that you may never suffer in,' them any more. .^

(4,) As his incarnation was a deep abasement, so his death

. was lfre most bitter death that ever was tasted by any from the

. beginning, or ever (hall be to the end of the world; and yet

how obediently doth he submit to both at the Father's caU,

Luke xii. 50.:" I have a baptitm. to be baptized with, and how

"am 1 straitned till it. be accomplished!" Ah Christian, yoar

ckath cannot have the ten thousandth part of that birternessin

-it that Christ's had. 1 remember one of the martyrs being

j asked, why his heart was so light at death? returned this answer,

because Christ's heart was so heavy at his death. O there is a vast

•difference betwixt the one and the other; the wrath of God,

and curse of the law were in his death. Gal. iii. 1.3. but there is

neither wrath nor curie in their death who die in the Lord,

Rom. viii. 1. , .,

. God forsook him when he hanged upon the tree in the agonies of, death. Mat. xxvii.46. "My God, my God, why hast "thou forsaken me I" But you shall not be forsaken; He will tusk's all your bed in sickness. Psal. xli. 3. He will never leave you nor forlake you, Heb. xiii. 5.

. - Yet he regretted aot, but went as a sheep or lamb, Isa. liii. iyr O reason yourselves out of this reluctancy at death, by this great example and pattern of obedience.

-•Arg.12. Lastly, Let no Christian l,e afrighted at death, consie'ering that the death of Christ is the death of death, and hath utterly disarmed it of all its destructive sower.

If you tremble when you look upon death, yet you, cannot, but tiiumph when yon look believingly upon Christ.

'For, {».}. Christ died (O believer) for thy sins, Rom. iv. 25, his death was an expiatory sacrifice for all thy guilt, Gal. iii. 13. so that thou shalt not die in thy sins,: The pangs of death may, and must be on thy outward man, but the guilt Qf siu, and the Condemnation el God (hall not be upon thy inner man.

(2-) The death of Christ, in.thyroom, hath utterly destroyed the power of death, which once was in the hand of Satan, Heb. it. 24. Col. ii. 14, 15. his power was not authoritative, but, executive: n,ot as the power of a king, but of a sheriff; which is none at all when a pardon is produced.

(3.) Christ hath assured us, that his victory over death (hall, be complete in our persons. It, is already a complete personal, .victory, in respect of himself, Rom. vi.'p. he dieth no more," <leath. hath no more dominion oyer: him. It's an incomplete victory already as to our persons. It can. dissolve the union of our fouls and bodies, but the union betwixt Christ and our fouls, it can never dissolve, Rom. viii. 38, 39. and as for the power it. still retains over our dust, that also (ball be destroyed at theresur-. rectipn, 1 Cor. xy, 2.5, 26, compared with ver. 54, 55, 56, 57. Ib that there is no cause for any soul in Christ to tremble at the. thought of a separation from the body, but rather tQ embrace it as a privilege; death is ours.

O that these arguments might prevail! O that they mighl at fyst win the consent of our hearts to.go along with dea,th; which is the messenger sent by God to bring us home to our Father/s house!

But I doubt, wheu all is said, we are where we; all this, suffices not to overcome the regret, and reluctancies of nature; still the matter sticks in our minds, and. we cannot conquer qur disinclined wills in this matter,. What is the matter? Where,lie the rubs and hindrances? O that God would r,emove. them at last!

Objection 1. This is a campion plea with many, I am not ready andjit to die; -were I ready, IJhould be willing to be. gone.

Solution (1.) IJow long soever you live in the body, there, will be somewhat still out of order, something still to do; for yet* must be in a state of impersection, while you remain here, and. according to this plea, you will never be willing to die. (2.) Your willingness to be dissolved, and to be with Christ, is. one special part of your fitness for death: and till you attain it in some good measure, you are. not (6 fit, tp die as you should; fee, (3.)"If you be in Christ, you have a fundamental fitness

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