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By THO: FETTIPLACE, Dom: Pet: Cantab.

Mat. 3.2.

Repent, for the Kingdome of Heaven is at hand.

LONDON, Printed for Humphrey Moſeley, and are to be ſold at his Shop at the Prince's Armes in St. Paul's Church-yard. 1653.

[The SINNERS TEARS By T.F.: woodcut frontispiece]


Suhitp t••vscr••it


16 LONDON 53

Printed for Humphrey Narley. at the Princes Armes in St Pauls Churchyard

〈1 page duplicate〉

TO THE RIGHT HONORABLE RICHARD Lord Keble, one of the Lords Commiſſioners of the Great Seal of England, and the much Honored Mary his truly Virtuous and Re­ligious Lady, Grace and Peace.

My honored Lord,

I Know not where to find a fit­ter Patron for tears than your Lordſhip, the conſtant Series of whoſe happie daies, hath been an exact pattern of true Piety, and but one intire Oblation of fincere Devotion: Greatneſs and goodneſs are the beſt ſuppor­ters of decaying Holineſs; by the one ſhe is defended from ſuffering ill, by the other in­couraged in doing well. Theſe high and happy Ornaments, together with my near­neſs of blood unto your Honors neareſt rela­tion; and mine infant education in that gratious Family (to which (as to the happy inſtruments) I thankfully aſcribe my firſt ingraftings into Chriſt) are ſtrong perſwaſions to invite me to preſume upon your Honors Patronage of this ſmall tract, and humbly to preſent you with a taſt of ſuch wholſome fruits, as (by divine in­creaſe) have had their growth from thoſe precedent bloſſoms. If ever kneeling were in ſeaſon, now is the needfull time, when there is not onely wrath gone out from the Lord againſt us, but even the blood, Vialls of his fierceſt wrath are daily powred down upon us. I willingly confeſs my ſelf to have been too deep a ſharer in thoſe grievous ſins, which have inforced theſe heavy judge­ments; what I cannot recall, I deſire hear­tily to bewail, and (as a true ſigne of mine unfeigned ſorrow) according to the mea­ſure of my weak abilities, have penn'd theſe following lines: accept of them I beſeech you, as humbly devoted to your honors ſer­vice; and read them as the diſturbed noti­ons of my diſtracted meditations. That ho­ly Providence which hath directed their ends, will (I truſt) ſupply their defects; even this the leaſt of graines (by that mer­cy) may become a fruitfull tree, and branch it ſelf into matter of commemorati­on to the learned, of inſtruction to the igno­rant, of help to the weak, of comfort to the willing, of joy to the good, of terror to the bad, of happineſs (I truſt) to all that are di­rected to it, and eſpecially unto their ſoules that ſtand in greateſt need of comfort from it.

I ſhall not preſume to inlarge my ſelf with waſt expreſſions, becauſe I know your Lordſhips more weightie affairs will not admit of ſuch fruitleſs indeavours; I ſhall now onely crave your Honors leave, to end with Oriſons; as you have been both holy in your lives, ſo may you be happy in your deaths, bleſſed in your memorialls; may thoſe hopefull pledges of your loves be faithfull earneſts of your joyes, and future branches of the Churches Peace; may they all (by your examples) go on cheerfully, and joyfully, in thoſe pathes of Piety which lead to reſt and quietneſs, that their ſeed­time being ſorrow, their harveſt may be joy, that all tears may be wip'd from their eyes, all ſorrowes from their hearts; This is (my honored Lord) the moſt affectionate deſire, as a kinſman, the moſt zealous as a Chriſtian, of

The moſt humble of all your Honors Servants, Tho: Fettiplace.

To the Chriſtian Reader All Chriſtian Conſolation.


THe miſeries of this diſtreſſed age are ſuch, and ſo many, that I know well, a ſubject of joy would, in the worlds eye, appear more ſeaſona­ble, and be far more acceptable, after ſuch a deluge of ſorrow; but that heart which is as truly ſenſible of the weight of Sin, as of the burden of Miſery, will ſurely find, that there is no true joy but in godly ſorrow, that there is more complaceney of ſoul in one repentant tear, than in an age of pleaſure: with grief of heart I confeſs, that much of my lit­tle time hath been vainly ſpent, I now (therefore) willingly reſolve, to la­ment my loſt houres, and ſhall account it my chiefeſt happineſs on earth, to ſpend my ſhort remainer, to my beſt advantage; I beſeech thee therefore (for thine own ſake) to conſider with mee, that God hath-reſerved us unto the laſt, the worſt, the very dreggs of time; that our tranſgreſſions are innumerable, our calamities unmatchable, our griefs unutterable, that our dayes, our houres, our minutes, perhaps are few, and full of evill, that it were even now moſt juſt with God to bring them to an end; that Satans cunning is unſearcha­ble, his malice implacable, and (with­out divine aſſiſtance) unreſiſtable; that there is no one minute of our whole lives, in which we are not expoſed unto many great dangers, both of ſouls and bodies; and wee ſhall then find, that it behoveth us to watch, and pray, that it mainly concerneth us to ſtore our ſelves with ſuch fit remedies, as may either inable in the combat, or ſup­port us in the foil.

Such humble Confeſſions, and de­vout Prayers, as (by Gods mercy) I have found agreeable to mine own condition, I have here publiſhed for the good of thine; and ſuch true com­fort as I have enjoyed in them, I hear­tily deſire may be derived to thee from them: And my humble and moſt ear­neſt petition unto Almightie God is, that as wee have been deep ſharers in ſinning and in ſuffering, ſo wee may alſo be devout ſharers in ſorrowing, that the Vialls of our teares, may paciſie the Vialls of his wrath, that ſo his fierce anger may be appeaſed, our crying ſinns pardoned, our bad conſciences quieted, our bleeding hearts comforted, our languiſhing de­ſires relieved, our ſad diviſions en­ded, our diſtreſſed Church reſtored, our dear Country preſerved, and our ſinfull ſouls and bodies eternally ſaved.

With this happy reſolution of timely contrition, I joyfully imbrace thee, and earneſtly intreat to be im­braced by thee, that by this bleſſed U­nion of our ſouls upon Earth, wee may at laſt enjoy each other, in thoſe ſweet imbraces of Eternity, which is the cordiall deſire, and ſhall be the daily and devout prayer of

Thy ſervant in all good affections and hearty well-wiſhes in Chriſt Jeſus, Tho. Fettiplace.

The Sinners Complaint.

AH Lord ſo long! what ſudden fears?
What cares and doubts, what ſighs and teares,
Since laſt thou did'ſt afford thy loving look
Have me opreſt,
And rob'd of reſt,
Becauſe thou Lord thy ſervant haſt forſook?
If not a look, yet hear me ſpeak,
And pittie me; O do not break
Thy bruiſed reed; why ſhould'ſt thou ſtrive with man,
Whoſe dayes are done,
When but begun,
Sith thou great God haſt meaſur'd out his ſpan?
Amaze me not with fearfull things;
Give me thy grace, O give me wings
Of ſwift deſire, and holy zeal, to raiſe
My ſoul to skies,
With powerfull cryes. ;
That I may ſweetly warble forth thy praiſe,
Thou art my Centre, fix me there,
Or move me in thy bleſſed Sphere;
Suffer me not (dear Lord) to moove from thee,
There is no reſt,
But in thy Breſt,
And in thine abſence preſent miſery.
O that I were at reſt with thee,
Or elſe that thou wert come to mee,
Since in thine abſence I am ſo diſtreſt;
Thy wrathfull frown,
Hath thrown me down,
And rais'd a ſtorm in my unquiet breſt.
Come Lord, and cloſe theſe wretched eyes,
So blear'd with ſins and miſeries;
Reſolve this erring heart to tamer duſt,
Which every day
Thus ſleals away,
That it may riſe more joyfull and more juſt.


All my Soul! why ſo diſmai'd?
Why ſo ſad, ſo ſore afraid?
Canſt thou think thoſe gratious eyes,
Drench'd in tears for thee,
Can diſdain ſuch powerfull cryes,
Such humility?
Sinners ſoules muſt ſorrow keep,
Man may mourn, when God can weep.
Soul, though thou haſt done amiſs,
Yet rejoyce, for thou art his.
See, his ſoul was ſad to death,
In his agony,
Sad to caſe thy wofull breath,
In thy miſery.
Be not faithleſs, but beleeve,
Man may ſigh, when God can grieve.
Do not grudge to lend a tear,
Can'ſt thou doubt, or can'ſt thou fear?
Can'ſt thou ſee his bleeding heart
And not believe him?
Wounded ſoul that bears a part,
Can never grieve him?
Timely tears are precious ſeed,
Man may weep, when God can bleed.
Be not ſo caſt down; Alaſs!
See his ſoul forſaken was,
Frighted with his Fathers frown,
Left in paines of hell:
Ah why art thou ſo caſt down?
'Twas to make thee well;
Doubt not, but admire his coſt,
Man may ſtray, when God was loſt.
Soul, when thou art left alone,
Do not deem thy Saviour gone,
When thou canſt not ſee his face,
'Tis to let thee know
That thoſe ſinnes with-draw his grace,
Which brought him ſo low.
See where he in grave doth lie,
Man may faint when God can die.
Weep no more, but wipe thine eyes,
See, O ſee, thy Saviour riſe,
Happie Soul, thy debts are paid,
He is aſcended;
Death is not, be not afraid,
All woes are ended;
Grieve no more, believe and live,
Man may take, when God can give.


WIth ſighing Soul, and bended knee,
Thy Servant vowes himſelf to thee:
My God, accept a broken heart
Bleeding for Sin; O thou which art
The Soveraign balm, vouchſafe to bee
(My deareſt Lord) that Balm to mee.
Inlighten with thy ſaving grace,
Thoſe eyes thou guideſt to this place,
And grant (dear God) thoſe fins of mine
May not obſcure that Grace of thine.


The Entrance to the Work.

THere is no man but naturally de­ſireth Happineſs, even thoſe un­happy ones that leaſt endeavour for it, have oftentimes an ear­neſt longing to it; there can be no true Happineſs without Peace, no true Peace without Holineſs, without offering violence to our corrupt affections, without ran­ſaking our ſoules and ſearching out the very ſecrets of our Sinfull hearts: the wordling may be outwardly merry, but none but the ſons of ſorrow can be inwardly contented; that outward Joy may delight for a ſeaſon, but this inward Peace remaineth for ever.

Peace is the richeſt Jewell in a Chriſtians Cabinet, the choiſeſt Legacy that Chriſt be­queathed to his choſen ones; in it there is a complication of all Bleſſings, and without it an expectation of all Miſeries; there is no attai­ning to it, but by the ſearch of him who is the giver of it, there is no following this ſearch, but by that path which leadeth to the ready way, and there is but one guide that can direct2 us unto that path: Bleſſed God, there is no way unto thee but by thee, thou art life, and thou art the way to that life, and thou art the guide to that way, thou Lord art all in all unto me, and therefore, ſhalt be now and ever praiſed by me.

In all awfull reverence to thy ſacred Ma­jeſtie, in fear and trembling at the ſight of thy ſevere Juſtice to impenitent ſinners, in ſerious apprehenſion of thy ſweet mercy in forbearing me a miſerable wretch, and with unfeigned for­row and humilitie of heart for grieving thy good Spirit, I here dedicate the ſhort remainer of my ſinfull dayes to thy ſervice; In thy name, and in thy fear, I begin my diſcourſe, who art the God of peace, by whoſe holy Spirit I am guided to this happy ſearch: Lord, lead mee in it by the ſame Spirit, that I may become an inſtrument of glory unto thee, of happineſs to thine, of reſt to mine own ſoul.

CHAP. I. Upon the conſideration of our ſinfull thoughts touching the Sacred Deitie, with holy cautions to order our Devoti­ons aright.


WHen I ſeriouſly conſider what thou art (the leaſt glimps of whoſe eternall glo­ry I can no way ſee but by conceiving what thou art not) when I look upon the vaſt diſtance between thee the bleſſed Creator, and mee thy ſinfull Creature, I cannot but wonder at thy great patience, at thy rich goodneſs, at thine endleſs mercy towards mee.


My whole life from my nativitie hath been a continued courſe of ſinfulneſs againſt thee, mine actions highly rebellious, my thoughts finfully wicked, even the very beſt of them a dark, confuſed, indigeſted heap of miſconcei­vings of thy ſacred Majeſtie.

Thou (Lord) art an Eſſence moſt glorious, moſt inconceivable, eternallie injoying Bleſ­ſedneſs in the fruition of thy ſelf; thy Centre is every where, thy Circumference no where; thou admitteſt not of Augmentation, nor of Di­minution; no length of time is byond thee, no depth of wiſdome beneath thee, no height of glory above thee, no bredth of mercy beſide thee: Thou ato Lord a moſt pure, ſimple, and eternall beeing; Pure without matter, without form; Simple without mixture, without compo­ſition; Eternall, without beginning, without end: no Created being can expreſs thee, no imagi­nation conceive thee, no underſtanding utter thee: when I think of thee as thou art, the bright beames of thy glory amaze mee; when I con­ceive of thee what thou art not, the terrors of mine own heart affright mee; even but the Leaſt thought of this kind is impious, ſeeing that hereby I do not onely rob thee of thy glo­ry, but even deprive thee of thy ſelf: and yet Lord, as thy being is moſt high, ſo is the ſearch thereof moſt neceſſary, becauſe from it (as from the bleſſed fountain) I enjoy my preſent, I ex­ſpect my future happineſs; and unto it with joy of heart, and earneſtneſs of ſoul, I deſire ſhould run the current of my praiſes in this life, of my Allelujaes in that to come.

When I find (therefore) any Corporall parts appropriated to the Divine nature, I there ſee thee gratiouſly deſcending to the weakneſs of4 my frail and infirm nature, and ever bleſs thy holy name that vouchſafeſt to declare thy ſelf, not as thou art, but as I am: Thine Eye (Lord) is thy Wiſdom, thy Right hand thy Power, thy ſitting thine Immutability, thy Standing thy Fortitude, thine Anger thy Juſtice in pu­niſhing, thy Repentance thy Mercy in pardo­ning, thy Hatred of ſin thy Holineſs, thy grieving thy Loving kindneſs, thy Patience and long ſuffering thy Goodneſs; all are thy ſelf.

Neither is it enough for me to conſider the Divine nature in Unitie of Eſſence, unleſs I go yet further and find a Trinity of Perſons; to be curious in this ſearch is dangerous, to be care­leſs damnable; nothing may be here ſafely ſeen, but what is gratiouſly revealed: Lord no man can ſee thee as thou art in thy ſelf, ſuffer mee therefore to ſee thee as thou art unto us, that I may know thee, and love thee, and delight in thee, and be for ever known and loved of thee.

If there were not an eternity of being, then it may be truly ſaid that not being was before being, and ſo that being had its riſe from-not being, by cauſing it ſelf to be when it was not; So ſhould Privation which was eternally evill, produce that glorious being which is eternally good: Seeing this cannot be, it will hence follow, that being was from all eterni­ty, and that this being was eternally Good; for that which was good in the effect, muſt needs be far more eminently good in the cauſe. That this eternall good being muſt be alſo infinite, becauſe eternity it ſelf is infinite; That this infinite eternall good being, muſt be of infinite power, to continue infinitely; That this infinite power muſt alſo bee of infinite under­ſtanding, to ſupport and preſerve this eternall5 infintie good beeing; and this infinite under­ſtanding is God.

Where there is an infinite underſtanding, there muſt alſo be an infinite object to be underſtood, els could it not be inſinitely active, and ſo ſhould both eternity and infinitie ſuffer diminution and become defective, which were for them both to be and not to be, which is impoſſible; and ſeeing there can be no object infinite out of God; therefore this eternall infinite and ever-bleſſed object, muſt of neceſſity be God.

Where there is an infinite underſtanding, and an infinite object to be underſtood, there cannot chooſe but be an infinite and eternall love; for from this infinite Underſtanding of this infinitely amiable and for ever bleſſed object, there muſt needs proceed an infinite delight, whereby it in­finitely injoyeth its own excellency, and eternally reflecteth on the beauty of its own perfection; els this infinite eternall underſtanding ſhould want power to enjoy this infinitely aimiable object, and ſo ſhould be neither good, infinite, nor eternall; and this infinite and eternall love is God.

Now becauſe this Underſtanding, Object, and Love are all infinite, and that whatſoever is in­finite muſt of neceſſity be God; it will from thence truly and undoubtedly follow, that this underſtanding is God, this Object God, and this Love God. And becauſe it is as equally impoſ­ſible that there can be any more than one infi­nite, therefore it will as aſſuredly follow that theſe three are one, three in Exiſtence, one in Eſſence, three in Order, one in Eternity; three perſons, one eternall, infinite, glorious, incompre­henſible, wiſe God; to whom be glory for ever. Amen.


This is that bleſſed Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, that ineffable, moſt myſterious Trinity in Unity, eternally injoying bleſſedneſs in its own Eſſence; This is that bleſſed inter-union of that ever bleſſed Spirit, that moſt unſpeakable, im­mutable, incomprehenſible fruition of eternall joy, at which the bleſſed Angells ſtand amazed, in which the bleſſed Saints ſhall ſweetly reſt themſelves for ever.

All this, and infinitely more than this, thou art Lord in thy ſelf, thy Wiſdom, Juſtice, Mercy, Truth, Power, Holineſs, and whatſoever other Attributes thou art pleas'd to take unto thy Di­vine Eſſence, are unto thee one, although unto us divers; and thou art therefore pleaſed diverſly to manifeſt thy ſelf unto us, becauſe we cannot otherwiſe conceive thy being, than according to thine outward working; thy diſtinct operations are unto us the divers Indications of thine eter­nall, undivided, and for ever bleſſed eſſence.

And now Lord, who can ſee thee thus and live? I have hitherto ſeen nothing but deſtructi­on to my body, amazement to my ſoul: In thine Eſſence there is light inacceſſible, unto which no mortall eye can approach; in thine at­tributes terror unutterable, from which no mor­tall man can eſcape: Thy wiſdom trying my corrupt heart, and ſcoarching my ſinfull reines; Thy Juſtice moſt ſevere, fearfull in the pronun­ciation, dreadfull in the execution; Thy truth admitteth of no alteration; no Judgement pro­nounced but preciſely fullfilled; Heaven and Earth ſhall paſs away, but not one tittle of thy ſacred word; Thy Holineſs is ſuch, that even the bleſſed Angells are impute in thy ſight; what then ſhall become of me a miſerable wretch, the thoughts of whoſe heart are only evill, and that7 continually? were it not for thy rich mercy, I were loſt for ever; by this alone I am for ever reconcild unto thee, and ſhall eternally be bleſſed with thee.

I can here with joy unſpeakable and glorious, behold thee my loving Father affectionately imbracing me in Chriſt from all eternity, by the ſweet working of thy holy Spirit; this is that truly-bleſſed viſion of the ſacred and myſterious Trinity in this life of Grace, that will for ever make me truly happy in that of Glory. Lord, if I find thee not Three in One to my ſoul's com­fort in this life, I ſhall never be found of thee to be bleſſed in thee in that to come.

Without thy Power it had not been decreed, without thy Wiſdom it had never been acted, without thy Love it had never been ſiniſhed: Here in a ſevere Judge I joyfully behold a mer­cifull Redeemer; In a glorious Divinity a true Humanity, united to the Deity, not mixed with it; Before I had three Perſons in one Eſſence, here I have two Natures in one Perſon, God and Man, one Chriſt, in whom, and by whom, I have a joyfull intereſt and undoubted union in the Godhead. Here is the Father promiſing, the Son performing, the Holy Spirit confirming. This is alone that bleſſed ſight of God, that bringeth reſt and quietneſs to my weary ſoul: To know him to be my God, to have ſuffered for my ſin, and riſen again for my Juſtification. To find him ſupporting, ſuſtaining me in my in­firmaties, relieving my wants, chaſtiſing my er­rors, revenging my wrongs, repairing my breaches, directing my wayes, protecting my per­ſon; wounding, rending, breaking my obdu­rate heart; creating in me a clean heart, and renewing a right Spirit within me; be­moaning,8 bewailing mine iniquities; inviting, nay compelling me to mercy and forgiveneſs.

Seeing now, O my Soul, that Gods being in himſelf is incomprehenſible; and his Love in Chriſt unutterable; with what Filial fear ſhouldſt thou think of him, with what awfulneſs name him, with what reverence and preparedneſs pray unto him, with what heat of affection love him, with what carefulneſs and conſcience fear to of­fend him, with what cheerfulneſs and holy dili­gence devote thy ſervice to him?

Bleſſed Lord,

Seeing that I am utterly unable of my ſelf to comprehend thee, O let me be graciouſly compre­hended of thee, that corruption may be ſwallowed up of immortality, and humane frailty of eternall glory.

As thou haſt given me an underſtanding in part to know thee, ſo give me alſo affections intirely to love thee, and fixed reſolutions to adhere unto thee; that as thou art truly and eternally one in thine Eſſence, and yet diſtinctly three in thy Perſons; ſo I may be truly and entirely one in my obedience, although diſtinctly three in my faculties; that all may be but one, and that a pleaſing ſacrifice of praiſes unto thee, of profit unto others, of comfort to my ſelf.

Forgive my miſconceivings of thy ſacred Eſ­ſence, my raſh approaches to thy heavenly preſence, my cold, careleſs, irreligious thoughts, diſtracted words, undeſent actions. Lord, I am ſailing on the ſtormy ſea of ignorance and miſery, O be thou my ſure Pilot to direct me, my ſweet calm to re­freſh me, my ſafe harbour to receive me; for of thee, and through thee, and to thee, are all things, to thee be glory for ever. Amen.


CHAP. 2. Upon the conſideration of Gods Love, and mans Unthankfulneſs. A Meditation ſuited to the Morning.

Bleſſed God,

WHen I conſider of the richneſs, of the largeneſs, of the conſtancy of thy love to man, of mans vileneſs and untoward­neſs unto thee his God, I ſtand amazed at thy goodneſs, and mine own unthankfulneſs. How great, and invaluable a bleſſinge do I enjoy in being made partaker of the glorious light of this preſent day? how vile and unworthy am I that receive it? how great and glorious art thou that giveſt it? Thou, O Lord, art light inacceſſible, unto which no mortall eye can approach; before whoſe glorious Majeſty the bleſſed Angels ſtand amazed; and I am duſt and aſhes, yea worſe, Lord, (for duſt was thy creation, and therefore in its entity was good) before I was duſt I was not at all: This not being, by thee became a being, this being beautifull, this beauty immortall; and without thee this happy being is again be­come far worſe than not to be.

What can be more vain, more empty than no­thing? ah wo is me, I am now become far worſe than nothing; thou madſt me all goodneſs, and that goodneſs might have made me all bleſſed­neſs; but I have made my ſelf all ſin, and this ſin hath made me all miſery; there was darkneſs in not being, but that darkneſs was incapable, there is greater darkneſs in being ill; for this darkneſs is moſt capable of the privation of all light of comfort in this life, of the fruition of10 the blackneſs of darkneſs in hell for ever.

This, Lord, was my condition in nature, and without thy gracious help muſt have been ſo for ever. Let me now ſee what my condition is by Grace, by which I enjoy not only the light of nature (without which my life would prove uncomfortable) but allſo a ſweet and ſafe aſſu­rance, that thou wilt by this happy light conduct me ſafely to the bleſſed light of Glory.

Bleſſed Lord, I can now look no way but to happineſs, I now find a true ſweetneſs and com­poſedneſs of ſoul, a conſtant and courageous ſetledneſs of heart, even in the very heighth of all the diſturbances of Nature, of all the inun­dations of Sin, of all the fluctuations of Sorrow, of all the Machinations of Satan: from the ſweet fountain of thy mercy, ariſe thoſe pretious ſtreames of Conſolation, which aboundantly relieve mee in this barren wilderneſs.

I find indeed a law in my members, conti­nually rebelling againſt the law of my mind, but I find alſo thy grace to bee ſufficient for mee, by which I am victorious here, and ſhallbe triumphant hereafter: Satan may ſtrive to win­now mee like wheat, but this ſhall make mee the purer for thy Granary. I now find a totall and a bleſſed change of the whole man; mine affections which formerly were captivated unto ſin, in­tirely devoted to thy ſervice; my love with holy David wonderfull to thy law, my hatred per­fect againſt ſin, my deſire eager for thy pre­ſence, my fear aſtoniſhing in thine abſence, my delight in thy promiſes raviſhing, my joy in thy performances triumphing.

By theſe rich indowments of thine I am wrapt up above the reach of humane miſery; all vain and empty deſires of the beſotting pleaſures of11 this life appear truly as they are, but thornes and bryars, to diſturb the growth of my felici­ty; how ſweet is their loſs for thy gain? how eaſily, how willingly, how joyfully, how thank­fully, are all theſe foggy miſts of ignorance and error happily diſperſt, by the bright rayes of my enſuing glory.

Beſide theſe fawning enemies of Peace which flatter to unquietneſs, I am now able to in­counter with thoſe other which affright the ſoul even in their firſt appearance, and are able to deject the carnall man even to aſtoniſhment, and utterly to expoſe him to the tyranny of ſin, and torture of puniſhment: ſuch Lord is the vaſt difference between the bleſſed ones of thy fold, and thoſe unhappy ones which ſtray from thee into the ſtrange paſtures of impiety.

No ſorrow can ſurprize mee but for ſin, and even this too thou makeſt to increaſe my joy: what affliction can be evil which is thy phyſick who art the fountain of all good? if it be grie­vous in the taſt, it is joyous in the effects; If I mark the happy cloſe, I muſt with joy confeſs, that theſe bitter ſtorms wil end in bleſſed calms, will bring to my remembrance thoſe grievous ſinns that brought my Saviour to thoſe bitter groanes, will force mee from the ſorrowes of this life, to my Celeſtiall harbour, will bring mee on my knees to ſee mine own vildneſs, will inrich mee with the graces of humilitie, and patience, and together with them the ſweet injoyments of thy bleſſed Spirit; and if ſo, how can I complain of want, when in ſtead of earth I enjoy heaven?

Lord, what can he fear that is aſſured of thy favour? afflictions, tribulations, croſſes, ſinns, Sa­tan, Death, hell it ſelf ſhall work to mine ad­vantage: as my croſs is more grievous, my crown12 ſhall be more glorious; where ſin and Satan have been moſt prevailing, there Grace and Goodneſs ſhallbe more triumphing. How truly ſweet Lord is the inviolable peace of thy ſaints? who powerfully compelleſt even the very rage of earth and hell to work to their advantage. Lord ſanctifie the trialls of this life unto my ſinfull ſoul, that by my patient ſufferings with my Saviour here, I may have peace with him and by him hereafter.

I have hitherto looked on mine inward hap­pineſs; if I now caſt mine eyes upon mine out­ward, I ſhall there ſee that all theſe outward bleſſings allſo are moſt peculiarly belonging to the Saints; the wicked ones of the world are robbers, and ſhall one day give an account of their theft; children, friends, ſtrangers, even our very enemies, are protected, preſerved, inriched, bleſſed for our ſakes; ſo was Joſeph and his bre­thren for Jacob, Zoar for Lot, Potipher for Joſeph, the Centurion and ſouldiers for St Paul: And if thou (Lord) wilt look ſo lovingly upon the children of this world for thine elect ſake, how gratiouſly wilt thou one day look upon thoſe ſonnes that ſhall be made partakers of thine own inheritance?

Who would not now bee holy? ſeeing that in this bleſſed condition, there is not only ſafety inviolable, but peace untterable, ſafety in life, and ſweetneſs in death.

And now Lord, when I enquire for what cauſe thou giveſt me all this, I find nothing but thy meer love unto me; when I ask what thou re­quireſt for all this, I hear thee demand no thing but the return of love: what is more eaſy, what more ſweet than love? and what object more aimable than that glorious being that is the13 perfection of al love, & that love the beauty of al perfection? Thou canſt not give Lord what thou haſt not, the glory of thy creation is but a glimps of that grater glory of thine eſſence; Lord who can deny thee Love? how ſweet is this yoak, how light this burden! when I love thee I enjoy thee, and my ſelf in thee, I poſſeſs thee, I reſt in thee for ever. O my God, all that thou giveſt mee, all that thou requireſt of mee, is to make mee happy, to thee be glory for ever. Amen.

Bleſſed Lord,

All this I joyfully confeſs thou haſt done for mee, and yet the whole courſe of my corrupt life hath been nothing elce but a continued Rebelli­on againſt thee: mine Eyes full of Adultery, my tongue of Corrupt communication, my hands of oppreſſion, mine eares open to iniquity, my heart full of hypocricy, my feet Lame in thy paths, and ſwift to walk in the wayes of ſinners, my whole man nothing elce but the very body of death and deſtruction.

I have ſinned againſt precepts, againſt promi­ſes, againſt mercies, againſt judgments, againſt the checks of mine own conſcience, and the bleſſed motions of thy holy Spirit; I have even tempted my temptations, by making daily and hourely proviſions for ſin; and have been ſo farr from ſor­rowing for all this, that I have reſolved to con­tinue yet ſtill. And yet ſo great is thy compaſſion towards mee, that ſtill thou ſtoreſt up new mercies for mee.

Lord, I bewail my weakneſs, I lament my willfulneſs, I abhorr my filthineſs; I heartily de­ſire, and earneſtly endeavour to unrip my ſoul, to ranſack my heart, to unlock the very ſecrets of my thoughts, that I may have all my ſins con­tinually14 before mee, even in their worſt appearan­ces; and I may loath them and leave them, and obtain thy gratious pardon for them.

I confeſſe, Lord, that I am utterly unworthy to enjoy this bleſſed light, which I have ſo much abuſed to thy great diſhonour; much more the light of Grace, by which thou leadeſt me to that of Glory; and that it were more juſt with thee, for ever to deprive me of theſe happy lights, and to expoſe me to the terrours of eter­nall darkneſſe:

Lord, I have finned, and cannot chuſe but ſin; I am a great and grievous ſinner, and yet I am thy child; have pity upon me, have pity upon me, for I am in miſery: into the boſome of thy tender love I thruſt my ſinfull ſoul for ſafety and protection.

O let not thy juſtice triumph in my ruine, but thy mercy in my deliverance, ſo ſhalt thou have the glory, and I the ſweetneſſe of mine eternall happineſſe.

Hear me, O Lord, and help me, for thy name ſake, for thy promiſe ſake, for thy Sons ſake. Amen.

CHAP. 3. Vpon the conſideration of Divine Provi­dence. A Meditation for Noon.

Bleſſed God,

WIthout thy holy providence no creature can ſubſiſt, by thine Allmighty power they were created out of nothing, and if thou ſhouldſt not ſuſtain them, they15 muſt needs return to nothing: how wiſely, how wonderfully doeſt thou guide and govern theſe inferiour creatures? All things are at once diſpoſed of by thee, and move ſucceſſively to their appointed ends: but above all, how gra­tiouſly haſt thou provided for the good of man? what varieties of food, how ſecretly, how ſweet­ly diſpoſed it to ſuſtentation? No creature can be nouriſhing without thee, and with thee I enjoy not onely nutriment, but delectation: how ſweet is this thy goodneſſe to my body? how much more ſweet thy mercy to my ſoul? and if thy temporall refreſhments are ſo good, how raviſhing is that celeſtiall food, with which thy Saints and Angels are delighted?

Lord, how undeſerving am I of theſe thy many favours? Thou giveſt rain to the earth, and it becometh fruitfull; thou loadeſt me daily with thy bleſſings, and loe I am unthank•••even thoſe creatures that are inſenſible, are daily nouriſht into augmentation, and man alone, whom thou haſt made to live for ever, con­tents himſelf with daily diminution.

This wofully appears by my deadneſs and dul­neſs in my Chriſtian calling, by my back wardneſs to Holy Duties, by my careleſneſſe and coldneſſe in prayer, wearineſſe in reading, irkomeneſſe in meditation, by my faint Hope, ſick Faith, luke-warm Love, frozen Charity, lame Pati­ence, languiſhing Zeal, and all thoſe other vi­ſible decayes of Goodneſs, which are none o­ther than the very ſymptomes of a dying ſoul.

Ah now, Lord, how miſerably deformed muſt I needs appear in thy fight, that am thus ugly in mine own! Thou that hadſt compaſſion on me when I was in my blood, and then ſaidſt un­to me, Live; that haſt waſhed me clean from16 ſin and pollution, and eſpouſed me into thine own bolom, wilt thou allſo love me in death? Wilt thou court me in the grave? How juſtly mighteſt thou for ever leave me to mine own ruin, that can ſo eaſily, ſo willingly forſake thee, for the pleaſures of ſin; and yet how ſweetly, how affectionately doeſt thou order all things for me? Even my very ſins invite me to a more happy, to a nearer Union with thee.

To thee therefore, O my God, the life of my life, the very being, and aſſured comfort of my ſinfull ſoul, and wretched body, do I addreſs my ſelf for mercy and forgiveneſs.

I confeſs my ſelf unworthy of thy gracious providence in ſuſtaining this frail and infirm body, much more unworthy (O Lord) of thine unſpeakable love, in reviving, relieving, imbra­cing my deformed ſoul.

Bleſſed Lord, who am I of whom thou art thus tenderly compaſſionate? When I was in the womb I was defiled with ſin, when I came out of it I was covered with ſhame; the World bewitched me, the Fleſh beſotted me, the Devill beguiled me.

Lord, when no eye pittied me, then thou badſt mercy on me; and now at laſt when I am run from thee, when I have adulterated my firſt Love, when I am become poor and wretched, and miſerable, and blind, and naked, thou freely forgiveſt me, thou calleſt me thy fair one, and giveſt me thy love.

O my God, I admire thy Goodneſs, I deplore and abhor mine own wretchedneſs; O let the ſweetneſs of thy love in Chriſt, inflame the dying sparks of my benummed ſoul to praiſe thee with­out ceaſing.


Expatiatc my narrow thoughts, with day'y contemplation of my heavenly home, with joyfull expectation of the ſweet fruition of Eternity; O give me ſuch a bleſsed raptaſie of ſoul, that I may live above the reach of humane miſery, and reign with thee hereafter in immortall glory.

CHAP. 4. Upon the conſideration of the ſinfulneſs, ſhortneſs, and uncertaintie of life. A Meditation ſuited to the Evening.


WHen I call to mind how many daies have paſt me without bending of a knee, how many nights I have gone prayerleſs to bed, I may well wonder that I am this hour a­live to ſpeak unto thee: I have been too un­mindfull of thy holy providence, and am there­fore utterly unworthy of thy mercifull protecti­on: Few, and full of evill have my dayes been in the houſe of my pilgrimage, I know not how ſoon I may goe hence, and yet I ſtill live as if I knew not why I came hither.

I am many wayes invited to my heavenly home; how ſweetly doeſt thou wean from the miſeries of life, by the bleſſedneſs of death! By this Evenings reſt of my body I am put in mind of that eternall reſt of my ſoul: This dayes ending tells me that the end of all things is at hand, that the faſhion of this world paſs­eth, and that all things ſhall become new: As18 this hour is the Evening to this day, ſo this day (for ought I know) may be the Evening to my whole life; I cannot challenge to my ſelf one minute more; how vain am I to promiſe dayes and years? Lord, in the whole current of thy Sacred Story I find but onely one, that durſt preſume upon ſo large a reckoning, and him thou brandeſt with the name of Fool: Let his folly (Lord) be my inſtruction, ſo ſhall I ac­count each day my laſt, and neither care to live, nor fear to dye.

How many have been ſnacht out of this life, how ſuddenly, and to mans eye how fearfully? How unſpeakable is thy mercy unto me to ſpare me for repentonce? how often and how earneſt­ly haſt thou invited me to mercy how coldly and how careleſly have I refuſed theſe thy gra­cious offers? ſtill I ſin, and ſtill thou forgiveſt, and (which is the height of my impiety) I therefore am more and more evill againſt thee, becauſe thou art more and more gracious unto me; and it were now moſt juſt with thee, even this very moment, to put a period to my ſinfull life.

Lord, Let this teach me to improve the ſhort remnant of my dayes to thy ſervice, and that I may endeavour ſo to doe, I will preſcribe my ſelf theſe following rules.

Each evening ſhall take a ſtrict account of that dayes traffique for my ſoul, and where I find my ſelf a loſer, I will labour for ſupply. When I awake, my firſt thoughts ſhall begin with thee, from whom I have my firſt being: Nothing will more truly repreſent me to my ſelf, than the firſt view of mine affections; if my firſt thoughts be ſeaſoned with grace, my fol­lowing actions will ſavour of goodneſs. My19 care ſhall be more to dreſs my ſoul, than to trim my body; I will think no pains too great, no ornaments too rich to make her beautifull. One devout ſigh from a contrite heart, is of more worth (in thy ſight) than an hours task of Lip-devotion. My affections are the ſoul of my words, without which, I ſpeak onely, but pray not: when my prayers are cold, my hopes may well be comfortleſs. My ſet hours for De­votion ſhall be conſtant; no pretence of nature ſhall debar me of this happineſs: The Lovers eyes are often glancing on the pleaſing object that delights him; if my affections be ſincere, my looks will be amorous, I ſhall often ſteal a ſweet Ejaculation to ſatisfie the longing of my Love-ſick ſoul. When I can thus bring the day to an end, my life will be comfortable, my death happy, and I may then ſay with holy David, that I will lay me down in peace, and take my reſt, for it is thou Lord onely that makeſt me dwel in ſafety.

Bleſſed Lord, in the morning of my Creation thou gaveſt me unto my ſelf, in the evening of my Redemption thou gaveſt thy ſelf unto me: My Creation was wonderfull, my Redemption aſtoniſhing. As this dayes light is obſcured for the reſt of my body, ſo wert thou the blefied and eternall Light for the reſt of my ſoul. Thou, O bleſſed Saviour, art my light to direct me, my heat to comfort me, my ſweet and ſafe repoſe e­ternally to refreſh me.

Gracious God,

With humble and dejected heart I ask for­giveneſs of the many failings of my ſinfud life paſt, recall my ſinfull thoughts to my re­membrance: Lord, as the burthen of them is20 intollerable, ſo let my grief for them be unut­terable.

Lord, open mine eyes that I may ſee the foulnes, and the filthineſs of ſin, and apprebend the great­neſs of thy wrath againſt it.

Forgive thoſe actuall ſins which this dayes light hath witneſſed; Lord, give me a godly ſor­row for them, a perfect batred againſt them, a fixed and a conſtant reſolution to forſake them.

Lord, cleanſe me from my ſecret and unknown ſins, and keep me, for thy mercy ſake, that da­ring and preſumptuous ſins may never have domi­nion over me.

Make me a carefull Steward of that pretious time which thou haft given me, withdraw my affections from the vain pleaſures of this ſinfull life, and grant that all the dayes of my appointed time I may wait readily and chearfully untill my change ſhall come.

CHAP. 5. Upon our approaching unto Gods Houſe.


THere is no mortall man worthy to ſtand at thy door, much leſs to appear in thy pre­ſence; and yet how often have I preſumed to approach unto thee without that prepared­neſs of heart, without that dejection of ſoul, without that true and holy reverence that be­cometh thy child.

I am now going out of Egypt into Canaan, out of Bondage into Freedom: The ſinfull troubles21 of this life are my ſouls Taskmaſters, to load it with a burthen inſupportable, and this is that place of ſacrifiſe, that Mount of God, to eaſe and ſolace it.

Conſider therefore, O my ſoul, in what relati­on thou now ſtandeſt to thy God: If thou art a true Iſraelite, thou wilt look back upon thy drudgery, and deſpiſe it, and offer up thy ſelf a living ſacrifice with cheerfulneſs, with thankful­neſs of heart. If thou art Gods child, thou wilt love to be in Gods houſe; Long for Gods pre­ſence, thirſt for his favour, delight in his Word, and rejoyce to be often at his Table: Thou wilt make it thy chieſeſt joy to be often in that place, from whence thou mayſt expect thy chief­eſt good.

Lord (by thy grace aſſiſting) I will now un­cloath my ſelf of all earthly affections, I will call to mind unto whoſe preſence I approach, and wherefore; that I am going from this Church Militant, to that Triumphant; that thou, Lord, art as truly preſent here in Grace, as there in Glory (unleſs therefore I am in love with miſery) I will leave behind me all earthly­mindedneſs, and carry with me a pure heart, and heavenly thoughts, a lowly mind, and re­verend geſture. Lord, if I go not cheerfully to thy Throne of Grace, I may well fear I ſhall never go joyfully to that of Glory.

The loweſt room in thy Houſe ſhall content me, Divine Worſhip admitteth not of diſparity of perſons; we are all ſinners, and (as we are in nature) moſt impure in thy ſight, the worſt room in thy Houſe is too good even for the beſt of us, yet decency of place may be taken with modeſty, if not ſought with emulation.

During the time of this holy diſpenſation, I22 will call my thoughts unto a ſtrict attendance; and make it part of my precedent prayer, that I may. Satan is ever moſt buſie, when our in­tentions are moſt holy; which when he cannot divert, he labours to corrupt, and by this means when I deſire to grow better, I become worſe. How carefull ought I to be to avoyd his cunning, who can couzen me in my beſt actions?

My ſoul ſhall more delight it ſelf with the matter, than my ears with the melody of thy ſacred Notes: Church-muſick will be then tru­ly ſweet unto me, when mine outward joy is ſubſervient to mine inward.

Mans ſinfull weakneſs ſhall not make me ſlight thy holy Ordinance: If my Paſtor have failings, I will pity, and pray for him, but not deſpiſe him. If I look into mine own ſoul, I ſhall there find work enough to repair mine own ruins. This, Lord, ſhall rather move me to extoll thy mercy, in upholding mine own ſteps, to lament the ſadneſs of my Brothers mi­ſery. Lord, let me never think my ſelf better than another, becauſe I know not how ſoon I may become worſe.

I ſhall willingly continue in that Fold where thou haſt placed me, and hope to remain there with comfort, till thou ſhalt lead me out with ſafety. While I am at thy feeding, I am happy; one of thy morſels well digeſted with humility and thankfulneſs, will yeeld me better nouriſh­ment than that other food of mine own finding. The very meaneſt of thy Miniſters may afford me Patience, and that heavenly Grace, with thy bleſſing to boot, is a great advantage. If I receive thy Sacred Word with cheerfulneſs, with earneſtneſs of heart, my obedience ſhall be accepted, my zeal rewarded.


While I am within thy walls, I ſhall account that geſture moſt decent that is moſt humble, and thoſe ceremonies moſt neceſſary that are moſt ſuitable to obedience; all matters of Do­ctrine (which are neceſſary to ſalvation) ought to be guided by thy ſacred Word, which is the onely rule of faith; all matters of Diſcipline, (which are neceſſary onely to obedience) are therefore left to thy Churches care: that as thou art one, ſo thy Church may be one, in that bleſſed union of love; which is the bond of peace.

And now, O Lord, if thou ſhalt call me to a ſtrict account for all my miſdemeanours in thy ſacred Worſhip, with what confuſion of face muſtneeds appear before thee?

How many evill ſuggeſtions, how many idle imaginations, how many ſinfull objects have I often entertained, to divert my thoughts from thy ſervice?

I have too often ſinned in abſenting thy Houſe, but more often and more grievouſly in frequenting it, by coming careleſly and out of cuſtome, by un­beſeeming geſtures, cold prayers, heartleſſe hear­ing, profane ſcoffing, curious cenſuring, and even in the beſt of my performances, by ſerving thee my God by halves; all this I heartily be­wail, and earneſtly deſire thy pardon and forgive­neſſe for it.

Lord, let this daies reſt of my body, bring to my remembrance that eternall reſt of my ſoul; let me not now think mine own thoughts, ſpeak mine own words, doe mine own actions, but come before thee with a ſanctified and humble ſoul, with a wounded and contrite ſpirit.

Repell all evill ſuggeſtions, remove all idle24 imaginations, divert all ſinfull objects; enlighten mine underſtanding, rectify my will, ſtrengthen my memory, ſubdue mine affections, that I may rejoyce in thy love, delight in thy law, long for thy preſence, rely on thy promiſes, thirſt for thy grace, and be for ever bleſſed in thy glory. Amen.

CHAP. 6. Upon our returning from Gods Houſe, and the neglect of private duties.


HE that knoweth thee, will undoubtedly de­light to ſerve thee; if I call thy Sabbath a delight, my thoughts in this day will be pure, my words gratious, mine actions holy: That ſoul which cannot joyfully familiarize it ſelf with thee in this life, may well be fearfull to be ſeen of thee in that to come.

When I ſeriouſly conſider what a rich favour I enjoy, how great a diſtance I am at from thee my God, how ſweet a mercy thou affordeſt me to ſpeak unto thee, I cannot but confeſſe mine own unworthineſſe, if I regard not what I hear, if I rejoyce not to recall thy bleſſed words to my remembrance.

How dreadfull was that voyce that ſpake in thunder! and how ſevere the words that then were ſpoken! how bleſſed is this ſtill muſick of the Goſpell! and how delightfull to my wound­ed ſpirit! Lord, let this raiſe my ſoul above the reach of earthly vanities, let this encourage me to heavenly chearfullneſſe in heavenly duties,25 to be joyfull in reading, fervent in prayer, fre­quent in meditation, conſtant in all: That knowledg wil make wofully wiſe, which teacheth me to know, and not to do thy will: Meditation is the life of Hearing, Practice the life of Me­ditation, and a ſincere heart the life of Pra­ctice.

When I look into my life paſt, I find it to be all ſin; when I conſider of my life preſent, I cannot but confeſſe it to be all ſhame; I am ſtill ſo far from growing better, that I am become much worſe; this is that bleſſed day which con­cerneth my peace, if I embrace not this happy opportunity, I may juſtly fear theſe gratious offers will be hid for ever from mine eyes: each word that I heard thy day is of weight; if I be­come not more holy by my heavenly improve­ments by it, I ſhall certainly become ſinfull by my careleſſe neglecting of it. Thy work, O Lord, will have its end, and this end (either to my happineſſe or ruine) ſhall aſſuredly pro­mote thy glory; there is no vacuity in nature, with thee, the God of nature, there can be none.

Think therefore, O my ſoul, that this daies inſtruction may be thy laſt (as thou hopeſt) for heaven, let it not paſſe thee without ſome pro­fit: Conſider ſeriouſly how many millions of worlds one loſt ſoul would give to be reſtored to thy condition; that to morrow thou mayeſt be as one of them, and then judge how great will be thy folly, how wofull thy miſery; if thou trifleſt with thoſe ſacred counſels which con­cern thy reſt.

O thou God of infinite compaſſions, look not upon thoſe infinite failings of my ſinfull nature,26 but behold me in the beauty and perfection of thy bleſſed Son.

Teach me, O Lord, to ſee the rebellion of mine own wicked heart, by his perfect obedience, my ſinfulneſſe by his righteouſneſſe, my miſery by his mercy.

Forgive my many and ſinfull compliances of nature, which have made me a ſtranger to thy graces, and mine own happineſſe.

The great neglect of mine obedience unto thy commands, hath juſtly called for the great and heavy load of mine afflictions; the careleſſe withdrawing of mine affections from thee my God, hath occaſioned the ſad departings of thy holy Spirit from me.

O that my loſſe of tears might now prevail with thee, to repair the loſſe of thy preſence in my ſinfull ſoul: Lord let the greatneſſe of my folly in ſinning, extoll the richneſſe of thy mercy in forgiving.

Reſtore me to the joy of thy ſalvation, and ſtabliſh me with thy free Spirit, ſo ſhall I have the comfort, and thou the praiſe of my de­liverance.

If thou, Lord, wilt give me underſtanding to delight in thy Law, I ſhall allſo have a ſweet aſſurance, that thou wilt delight in me to doe me good.

Accept of my deſires, ſtrengthen my endea­vours, perfect my performances, pardon my weakneſſe, aſſiſt my willingneſſe, forgive my ſin­fulneſſe, nouriſh the good motions of thy holy Spirit in me, and for thy mercies ſake remove all dangers and temptations from me; that when the ſhort and wretched race of my imperfect holineſſe is ended here, I may ſolemnize that eternall Sabbath with thy bleſſed Saints and An­gels27 in thy Kingdome, and reſt with thee in the perfection of true happineſſe for ever. Amen.

CHAP. 7. Upon the want of due Preparation for re­ceiving of the bleſſed Sacrament of the Lords Supper.


WHen I look upon the ineſtimable value of that gift which I am this day to re­ceive, when I conſider of the Majeſtie of thee the Giver, of the miſery of me the Re­ceiver, of the vaſt difference between corruption and eternity, of thy ſtrict commands for pre­paration to the Paſſcover under thy Law, of thy bleſſed precepts for due receiving of thy Sacra­ment under the Goſpell, of thine own example in waſhing thy Diſciples feet, and thereby ſym­bolizing the eternall waſhing of their ſouls; of thy Saints practice in their ſolemn prepara­tions unto holineſſe, by pulling off their ſhoes when they approached thy preſence; of thy ſe­vere judgements againſt Ʋzza, for heedleſſe touching of thine Ark; againſt the Bethſhemites, for curiouſneſſe in looking in; againſt thoſe raſh Corinthians, whereof (for want of holy pre­paration) ſome were weak, ſome ſick, ſome fallen aſleep; and laſtly, of that dreadfull ſentence againſt unworthy commers to thy Wedding Feaſt, pronounced by thine own mouth, I tremble at my bold approaches to thy bleſſed Table, I wonder at thy goodneſſe that I am yet alive to ſay there is yet mercy with thee, that thou mayſt be ſcared.


How many bleſſed opportunities of coming to thy Table have I ſinfully neglected! How many abuſed, by my ſinfull reſort thither, by my wandring and idle thoughts there, by my wicked and profane actions after I returned thence!

Lord, wilt thou ſtill ſuffer me to abuſe thy goodneſſe? How long Lord, how long ſhall I wander in theſe wofull waies of wickedneſſe? I am weary of the ſins and miſeries of this life, and willing to embrace this heavenly comfort for my ſoul. I confeſſe my ſelf a great and grievous ſinner, and yet I know Lord, thou cameſt not to call the righteous, but ſinners to repentance: I am hungry, and poor, and blind, and naked, and miſerable, deſtitute of all hope, of all help, but from thee alone; Lord I am unworthy of thy crums, yet thou admitteſt me to thy Table; the ſinfulneſſe of my corrupt na­ture hath made a wofull ſeparation between us, but the richneſſe of thy ſufferings hath for ever made a ſweet conjunction of us; all my ſins are thine, all thy righteouſneſſe is mine, thou art now my well-beloved, and I am thy choſen one, and in this bleſſed Union is my ſweet and ſafe repoſe for ever.

Who can enough deplore that more than wofull ſeparation? Who can enough admire this more than wonderfull conjunction? this more than happy reconciliation? Here is Juſtice undeniable, Mercy incomprehenſible, Wiſdome unutterable, Love unimitable.

O let my ſoul now loſe it ſelf in the un­known paths of heavenly contemplation; let me this day apprehend thee (O my Saviour) faſting, praying, weeping, groaning, ſweating, bleeding, fainting, dying, for my ſake, and29 now pleading to my God for mercy for me: Let me now taſt the ſweetneſſe of that mercy by a lively faith, the fulneſſe of this ſweetueſſe by a bleſſed hope, the fruition of this fulneſſe by eternall love.

Lord how unworthy am I of theſe embraces, if I bewail not, if I abhor not, if I forſake not all the wretched failings of my ſinfull life paſt; if I rejoyce not with joy unſpeakable, and glo­rious, to be admitted to ſo great a mercy; if this inflame not mine affections with unſpotted love to thee my God, with earneſt longings for thy preſence of Grace in this life, of Glory in that to come?

And now, Lord, ſince thou in thy rich love haſt freely forgiven me my pounds, I will allſo moſt willingly and heartily forgive my brother his pence; I will have nothing to doe with malice, that had ſo much need of mercy: I will unfeignedly, and freely, and fully for­give all injuries on earth; I will love all thoſe that hate me, and pray for all thoſe that de­ſpightfully uſe me; and all this for thy ſake who haſt freely loved me, and layd down thy life for me, to whom be Glory for ever. A­men.

Bleſſed Lord God,

Look down in mercy and compaſſion on me thy poor diſtreſſed ſuppliant, whom thou now vouchſafeſt to admit unto thy heavenly Banquet; Illuminate my blindneſs by the bleſſed light of thy moſt ſacred Word, ſatisfie my hunger with the ſweet refreſhings of thy gracious preſence, in­rich my poverty, with the gifts and graces of thy holy Spirit; cover my nakedneſs with the pre­cious robes of thine own righteouſneſs; ſwallow30 up the depth of my miſery by the height of thy mercy, that I may this day appear before thee with a ſincere heart, and happy ſoul.

Lord, ſtrengthen and ſupport my feeble faith, make me joyfully to truſt in thee, conſtantly to re­ly upon thee, thankfully to ſacrifiſe my ſoul in praiſes to thee.

Ʋouchſafe, dear Lord, that I may worthily approach thy bleſſed Table, that I may this day be ſo united to thee, that all my joy and com­fort may hereafter bee for ever with thee. Amen.

CHAP. 8. Containing pious Ejaculations at the time of Receiving.


THis art that bleſſed Bread by which my ſoul is nouriſht to eternall life; thou art that fruitfull Vine from which doth flow thoſe gladding comforts to my fainting ſpirit.

Thou wert broken for my ſins, thou wert bruiſed for my tranſgreſſions, and the chaſtiſe­ment of my peace was upon thee: Lord, by thy ſtripes let my ſinfull ſoul be healed.

Thou tookeſt into thy hand the cup of trem­bling, thou drankeſt out the very dregs thereof, and thy precious blood was poured out like water for my ſake.

Sweet Jeſus ſuſtain me by this Bread, refreſh me with this Wine, recover me with this Po­tion, cleanſe me by this Effuſion; that I may31 this day receive joyfully, return thankfully, live righteouſly, and dye happily.

CHAP. 9. Containing a brief Meditation, and pious Thanksgiving after our Receiving.

I Am this day joyfully delivered from the bondage of Sin and Satan, and happily re­ſtored unto the glorious liberty of the ſons of God; I have relliſhed the ſweetneſs of his hea­venly promiſes, and received the ſeal of his gra­cious performances; I now enjoy that bleſſed Peace of God wch paſſeth all our underſtanding. My deliverance is wonderful, my freedom abſo­lute, my peace unalterable, my joy unutterable: My conſcience is now quieted, my ſpirit raviſh­ed, mine enemies vanquiſhed, and my God wel­pleaſed.

To thee therefore, O thou bleſſed Fountain of eternall ſweetneſs, do I addreſs my joyfull ſoul, to love and honour thee to my lives end. Lord Jeſus accept of me, and ſo powerfully and gra­ciouſly aſſiſt me, that I may ſavingly behold thee in thy bleſsed promiſes, that I may happily enjoy thee in thy holy Ordinances; that I may clearly ſee, and joyfully confeſs what great things thou haſt done for my poor ſoul; that I may be dayly raviſhed with apprehenſion of thine exceeding love, and hourly huſied with recounting thy end­leſs praiſe.

Lord make me to forſake the ſins and miſeries of this life; make me more watchful over my corrupt heart, more zealous of thy glory and thy chil­drens32 good; that I may never willingly offend thee, but wholly ſacrifiſe the ſhort remainder of my dayes unto thee; that ſo my heart and my fleſh may triumphantly rejoice in thee the living God.

Mortifie my corruptions, ſupport my weakneſs, accept my willingneſs: Let this my humiliation before thee be a pleaſing ſacrifice unto thee, for his alone ſake whoſe precious life thy rich mer­cie hath ſacrifiſed to thy Juſtice for me. Lord hear me, and have mercy on me for his alone ſake whom thou haſt freely given unto me, that I may truly love thee, devoutly ſerve thee, earneſtly im­brace thee, eternally enjoy thee. Amen.

CHAP. 10. Upon a Journey undertaken, and the many dangers incident thereunto.

I Am now going from mine own home, and know not whether I ſhall ever return; God I know hath ſet a priod to my dayes, beyond which I cannot paſs, but when, or where, or how my life ſhall end, I am uncertain. Many are the dangers that attend this ſinfull life, and many more my ſins that have deſerv'd them, I can neither number the one, nor foreſee the o­ther; this is the wretched, and the ſad con­dition of my body, and (without unfeigned ſor­row for my ſins) the much more wofull caſe of my diſtreſſed ſoul.

Lord, there is nothing ſo ſweet as thy love, nothing ſo ſafe as thy protection, and yet I have careleſſy neglected the one, and thou mayſt now juſtly deny me the other; thou haſt woed33 me to mercy, and I have refuſed to come; thou haſt graciouſly invited me by thy continuall preſervations, by thy fatherly ſuſtentations, by thy gentle corrections, by thy faithfull promi­ſes, and thy rich performances.

Bleſſed Lord, how wonderfull are thy com­paſſions towards me, when I am unthankfull for thy many favours, when I am unmindfull of mine own miſeries, even then thou graciouſly provideſt for me, and yet for all this I have not hitherto reſolved ſeriouſly to come unto thee.

Such, and ſo many are my ſins, ſo great is my unthankfulneſs, that I now tremble to appear before thee; and yet ſo tender is thy mercy to me, that thou again allureſt me to comfort and contentment. Lord, into the bleſſed boſom of thy love I caſt my ſelf for ſafety and pro­tection; and in the midſt of danger, even in death it ſelf will joyfuliy rely upon thee.

For thou, O Lord, art my ſtrong rock and for­treſs, unto which I will alwaies reſort: Lord keep me as the apple of thine eye, hide me under the ſhaddow of thy wings.

Strengthen my weak faith againſt the ſtrong aſſaults of Satan; ſupport and comfort me in all the fears and terrors of mine own accuſing con­ſcience; protect and keep me in this preſent journey; let thy holy Angels be my bleſſed Guar­dians, to protect me in life, to preſerve me in death, to aſſiſt me after death.

O let me never grieve thoſe bleſſed Spirits (which though inviſibly, yet moſt aſſuredly are my attendants) Lord, as thou haſt given them ready­neſs and cheerfulneſs of mind to watch my preſer­vation, and further my ſalvation, ſo give me34 carefulneſs and conſtancy of ſoul to joy them in my life and converſation.

And ſeeing, Lord, I cannot know my hour of diſſolution, O teach me ſo to number my days, that I may apply my heart unto heavenly wiſdom; that I may obtain a ſweet aſſurance of thy love in Chriſt; unfeigned ſorrow for my ſins, a ſin­cere and conſtant heart to thy ſervice, and a cheer­full readineſs at thy call. Amen.

CHAP. 11. Containing pious Meditations, and zea­lous Ejaculations after a Journey.

I Am now by Gods gracious providence retur­ned ſafe unto mine earthly home, but am ſtill travelling to my heavenly: There is nothing in this life but labour and ſorrow, nothing in that but reſt and happineſs, and yet I dote upon the one, and neglect the other. Lord, if my trea­ſure were with thee, my heart would be there allſo: When thou giveſt me more knowledge of thee, I ſhall have more deſire to come unto thee; When my ſins have made me more ſen­ſible of mine own miſery, thy Grace (I truſt) will make me more capable of thy ſweet mercy.

Lord, if this vain unquietneſs be ſo refreſh­ing to my mortall body, how truly bleſſed will thy heavenly reſt be to mine immortall ſoul? When thou, Lord, wilt wipe away all tears from mine eyes, all akings from my heart; when there ſhall be no more death, neither ſor­row, nor crying, nor any more pain; when ſoul and body ſhall triumphantly and joyfully35 repoſe themſelves in thee for ever: when they ſhall drink freely of the rivers of thy plea­ſures, and be for ever ſatisfied with the fatneſs of thy houſe.

I confeſs my ſelf unworthy to enjoy this out­ward reſt in this mine earthy home, much more unworthy to enjoy that inward reſt, that ſweet aſſurance of a lively hope, to be partaker of e­ternall reſt. How wretched is my body without this outward quietneſs? How much more wre ched is my ſoul without thee? Thou, O Lord, art my ſhield to defend me, my ſtaff to uphold me, my food to ſuſtain me, my wine to glad me, my beloved to embrace me, my plea­ſure to delight me, my joy to raviſh me, my ſweet and ſate repoſe for ever to refreſh me.

Let this teach me (Lord) to fix my thoughts on heaven and heavenly things; to uſe this world ſoberly in thee and to thee; to view it (truly as it is) a barren wilderneſs, a tranſi­tory, vain, and empty thing; far inconſiſtent with my reall happineſs; to deſire nothing, to enjoy nothing in the creature, but onely in, and unto thee the great Creator; ſo ſhall no vain pleaſure bewitch me, no unjuſt profit beguil me; no ſudden ſorrow diſmay me, no terrors of conſcience affright me.

To thee, O thou ſoveraign of my ſoul, do I de­vote the remnant of my ſinfull dayes, to love thee, to praiſe thee, to honour thee, to reſt in thee for ever.

Lord wean me from the ſins and miſeries of this life, and raiſe my thoughts to immortality: Let the ſweetneſs of thy heavenly joyes relieve the harſhneſs of my worldly ſorrows, that miſery may be ſwallowed up of mercy and frailty of eternity.


Ʋnite me in a bleſsed union with thee, that I may conſtantly adhere unto thee, and be for ever graciouſly accepted of thee: O give me a ſweet complacency of ſoul in thy ſervice, and a will­ing and a dutifull obedience unto thy com­mands.

Lord give me a thankful heart for all thy mercies to me, for thy continuall preſervation, for thy bleſſed ſupportation, for the injoyment of thy needfull comforts in this life, and for the glo­rious hopes of thoſe in that to come.

Bleſſed God, ſo ſublimate my ſinfull ſoul, that I may ſee the richneſs of thy love in Chriſt, that I may ſoberly enjoy thy bleſſings here, and faithfully exſpect thy joyes hereafter.

Lord, all that I have without thee is meer emptineſs, and nothing, meer vanity, and worſe than nothing; my glory, ſhame; mine honor, ig­nominy; my health, ruin; my riches, poverty; my gain, loſs; my pleaſure, pain; my laughter, madneſs.

Thou, O Lord, art all in all unto me, O grant that nothing may withdraw my ſervice from thee; that no inticing pleaſure may allure me, that no diſtracting care, or ſinfull ſorrow may diſturb me, but that my ſoul may now and ever ſafely and contentedly rely upon thee.

Lord, thou ſeeſt all my deſires, and my conti­nuall groanings are not hid from thee: Thou a­lone knoweſt how weary I am of the ſinful tra­vailes of this life, how earneſtly I long to be at reſt with thee; Lord pardon all my ſins, and put an end to all my miſeries: Come Lord Jeſus, come quickly, wipe away all tears from mine eyes, and bring me to that reſt of thine which ne­ver ſhall have end. Amen.


CHAP. 12. Upon the great danger of Security.

DEceive not thy ſelf, O my Soul, it is not ſo eaſy a matter to inherit Heaven, as thou imagineſt; there will be much fighting, ſweating, bleeding, much compunction of ſoul, ſubjection of body, hard preſſing towards the mark, for the price of the high calling in Chriſt Ieſus, before this happy conqueſt can be gained.

Conſder therefore in what condition thou now ſtandeſt, what ground thou haſt gained of thy corrupt nature, how much better thou art this day than the day paſt, than the year paſt, than thy whole life paſt; nay rather how much worſe, by adding ſin unto ſin, by drinking in iniquity like water, by treaſuring up wrath a­gainſt the day of wrath, and revelation of thy righteous judgement.

Philoſophy will tell thee, that in all naturall motions, the nearer they are to ending, the more violent their motion is; Divinity will tell thee, that in old age thou wilt be fat, and well liking: what increaſe of love haſt thou to Gods Law? what growth of hatred againſt ſin? what boſome-ſin haſt thou parted with? what gratious improvement haſt thou made in Know­ledge, Faith, Repentance, Love, and all thoſe other gifts and graces which concur to thy per­fection?

Holy Saint Anſelm was often heard to ſay, If I could from hence behold the pains of hell, from thence the horrour of ſin, I would rather embrace38 thoſe pains, than this horrour: O what growth of grace was here! how far am I from this degree of holineſſe! how eaſily perſwaded to delude my ſelf with ſhews and ſhadows of perfection. There is no attaining unto happineſſe without holy violence, without beating down my body, without cheriſhing my ſoul; if I conquer not here, I cannot triumph hereafter.

Lord, when I look into the ſtrictneſſe of the lives of thy Saints, I much lament the folly of mine own; I ſee holy David in ſackcloth and aſhes, conſuming whole daies and nights in mourning for ſn, waſhing his bed with his tears, afflicted in body, tormented in ſoul, grieving, crying, roaring, for unquietneſſe of heart. Bleſſed Paul ſubduing his body, by faſt­ing, watching, praying, toyling in the Miniſtry. and thou, my bleſſed Saviour, in continuall la­bour and ſorrow for my ſake: how vain is my truſt, how falſe my hope, how great my errour, to believe I run, when I ſtand ſtill? to expect a triumph without a victory, a victory without a combat. Lord, if many that ſtrive to enter in at the ſtrait gate, yet ſhall not be able: what ſhall become of me? who am ſo far from coming to thee, that I every day am running from thee; who am not onely oppoſite unto thee, but even enmity it ſelf againſt thee.

Sometimes I feel the ſtings and gripings of a wounded conſcience, I know my ſelf to be a grievous ſinner, but I quiet my diſturbances by thee my Saviour, I willingly accept of mercy from thee, but grudgingly repine at ſervice to thee; thou biddeſt me indeed to drink freely of the waters of life, but thou commandeſt me allſo to make my calling and election ſure, to work out my ſalvation with fear and trembling;39 thou ordaineſt not the end without the means; if I rebelliouſly neglect the one, thou mayſt moſt righteouſly deny me the other: Lord, what can it profit me to enjoy the pleaſures of ſin for a ſeaſon, when I deprive my ſoul of hap­pineſſe for ever?

O let this teach me to deplore my dangerous condition, to goe on chearfully in the waies of godlineſſe, to think no coſt too much, no pains too great, no grief too good, to purchaſe Hea­ven; to conſider ſeriouſly, that time once paſt can never be recall'd, that this hour may be my laſt, and bring me to eternity of torments; where the ſtream is ſtilleſt, there the chanell is deepeſt; where there is leaſt diſtruſt, there is uſually moſt danger: Satan therefore diſturbs me not, becauſe I ſleep in death: But when thou, Lord, ſhalt open mine eyes to ſee the ſub­tilty of this Deceiver, I ſhall then find, that the waters (of ſin) are gone over my ſoul, that I am wofully drowned in the great depth of ſe­curity, and can expect nothing (without mer­cy) but Satans cruelty, and mine own endleſſe miſery.

To that ſweet mercy therefore I appeal, with earneſtneſſe of ſoul, and humbleneſſe of heart, be­moaning my ſinnes, bewailing my tranſgreſſi­ons.

O Lord my God, when I conſider of thy gra­tious goodneſse, and mine own vileneſſe, I am utterly aſhamed to appear in thy preſence.

Thou haſt often called me to repentance, but I have not hearkned unto thee; thou haſt loving­ly invited me to mercy, but I have wilfully re­fuſed; thou haſt clothed me with thine own gar­ment, and I have ſhamefully defiled it; thou40 haſt enriched me with thy grace, and I have rob­bed thee of thine honour: All this, and infinitely more than this, thou haſt freely done for me, the worſt of ſinners, and yet for all this I have re­belliouſly forſaken thee, and moſt ungratiouſly been moſt unmindfull of thee.

And now, Lord, ſeeing that I am dead and putrified in ſins, and rotten in corruptions, what elſe can I expect from thee, but to be buried out of thy ſight? and yet thou ſtill ſayeſt unto me, live.

O thou bleſſed Fountain of eternall good, con­vey thoſe happy ſtreams of comfort to my ſinfull ſoul, that may revive me from the grave of mi­ſery: open mine eies, that I may ſee thee in thy long patience, in thy great goodneſſe, in thy rich mercies, in thy fatherly affections towards me.

I am wofully ſunk into the deep mire of ſin, where no ſtay is; Lord uphold me by thy grace, that I periſh not eternally; O deliver me for thy mercy ſake, for I am helpleſſe and poor, and my heart is wounded within me.

Let my ſoul live, and it ſhall praiſe thee, and thy judgements ſhall help me.

As thou haſt raiſed me by thy power, ſo rule me by thy providence, that thy grace may be far ſweeter with my ſufferings, than my pleaſure with my ſins.

Reſtrain my looſe deſires, renew my good pur­poſes, aſſiſt my weak endeavours, correct mine errours, ſuſtain my infirmities; give me a godly ſorrow for my ſins, a thankfull heart for thy fa­vours, a filiall fear of thy judgements, a ſincere love to thy laws, an holy conſtancy, and happy perſeverance, to my lives end. Amen.


CHAP. 13. Upon the great danger of Preſumption.

ALaſs, my Soul, how vain art thou, how wretched, to preſume upon the mercy of thy God? how canſt thou be ſo fooliſh to believe, that God will favour thee in that, which he ſo ſeverely puniſhed in his own Son? thinkeſt thou that pretious bloud was ſpilt to cheriſh ſin? Be not miſtaken, for as Chriſt Ieſus came into the world to ſave ſinners, ſo he came allſo to call ſinners to repentance. Doeſt thou argue well to ſay, becauſe God is mercifull, long-ſuffering, and of great goodneſſe, therefore I will abuſe his mercy in ſinning, his patience by my long continuing in ſin, his great good­neſſe by my great unthankfulneſſe? is not this to mock his mercy, to bid defiance to his juſtice, to arm him with fury, to invite him to revenge? Aſſure thy ſelf, the longer he is in drawing his Bow, the more forcible will he ſend his Arrow.

Deceive not thy ſelf therefore, God will not be ſo mercifull to thee, as to be unjuſt to him­ſelf; All the waies of God are Mercy and Truth; Mercy to ſupport thy weakneſſe, Truth to correct thy wilfulneſſe: There is therefore Mercy with him, that he may be feared, not that he may be ſlighted, not that he may be ſhamefully diſhonoured. How full of falſhood is thy bold preſumption? thou crieſt Peace, Peace, when ſudden War is ready to deſtroy thee; There is no peace to the wicked, ſaith my God; Heaven and Earth are up in Arms againſt42 thee, and there is none left, not ſo much as thine own Conſcience to deliver thee.

Thou haſt gratiouſly received the knowledge of the truth, thou haſt grievouſly ſinned againſt the light of that knowledge, thou haſt wofully continud in thy ſins, without remorſe of con­ſcience, without deſire of repentance, and there now remaineth no more ſacrifice for ſin, but a ſearfull looking for of judgement, and violent fire, that ſhall devour the Adverſaries.

O remember, that the Angels, for one ſin, were thrown down from Heaven, and that Adam, for one ſin, was caſt out of Paradiſe: Thy ſins (O my Soul) are innumerable, thou haſt had line upon line, and precept upon precept, and yet thou addeſt ſin upon ſin, and tranſ­greſſion upon tranſgreſſion: Thou haſt ſinned againſt many pretious promiſes, againſt many gratious performances, againſt many fearfull judgements; thou haſt grieved that good Spi­rit, by which the Saints are ſealed up unto the day of redemption: All theſe are heavy aggra­vations upon thee, to fill up the meaſure of thy ſins, and haſten the ſwiftneſſe of thy puniſh­ments.

Ah how ſad is thy condition! thou haſt not onely wearied out thy ſelf in wickedneſſe, but thy God allſo: hear what he faith unto thee, how he complaineth of thee, by his holy Pro­phet, Behold, I am preſſed under you, as a cart is laden with ſheaves, Amos 2.13. and yet thou ſtill addeſt more load: but as thou addeſt ſin upon ſin, ſo thou calleſt for wrath upon wrath; as thou haſt made a mock at ſin, ſo God will make a mock at miſery; as thou haſt thy meaſure in ſinning, ſo God will have his meaſure in puniſh­ing: Conſider what he ſaith unto thee by his43 Prophet, Judgement will I lay to the rule, and Righteouſneſſe to the ballance, Eſay 28.17, 18. As he hath a bottle for thy tears, ſo he hath a bag for thy tranſgreſſions, Job 14.17. their growth is recorded, their number accounted, their nature examined, all ſealed up againſt the great and fearfull day of the revelation of the righteous judgement.

O conſider this thou that forgetteſt God, leſt he tear thee in pieces, and there be none to deliver thee: Think how ſuddenly thou mayſt be ſnatcht away by thoſe infernall Fiends, to endleſſe torments, and then what tears will be enough to weep thine obſequies, to quench thoſe everlaſting burnings? But then, alaſs, inſtead of tears of compaſſion, thou ſhalt have mocks of deriſion, the curſed Devils will laugh thee to ſcorn, the bleſſed Saints and Angels will re­joyce at thy confuſion, and God himſelf, who onely can relieve thee, will for ever hide his tender mercy from thee.

Awake therefore out of thy ſleep of death, look well into thy loſt eſtate, thou art now near unto making up the meaſure of thy ſins, beyond which thou canſt not paſſe: Thy God hath ſaid to thee, as to the Sea, hitherto malt thou goe, and here ſhalt thou ſtay thy proud waves: Think how ſuddenly thou mayeſt be called to thy laſt account, even this very hour, (for ought thou knoweſt) thoſe curſed Spirits may convey thee to thy fiery Priſon: O think how powerfully the wrath of God will then ſeize upon thee; how wofully thou wilt excrutiate thy ſelf, with apprehenſion of thy former folly; and laſt of all, how wretchedly thou art for­ever baniſht from eternall joyes, to ſuffer with the damned in eternall torments: Lt this44 move thee to amend thy wicked wayes, to cry mightily to God for mercy, to judge thy ſelf, to condemn thy ſelf, that thou mayſt not be judged of the Lord; to Kiſs the Son leſt he be an­gry, and ſo thou periſh from the right way: If his wrath be kindled, yea but a little, bleſſed are all they that put their truſt in him. Turn (therefore) unto the Lord thy God (O my ſoul) for he is gracious, and merciful, ſlow to anger, and of great kindneſs, and repenteth him of the evil.

Bleſſed Lord,

As an unfeigned ſign of my repentance, in anguiſh of heart, and bitterneſs of ſoul, I earneſt­ly deſire to ſearch into the ſecreets of my ſinfull thoughts, to unboſom all my ſins, and lay them open to the view of all thy Saints, that thou mayſt have the glory, they the good, and I the ſhame of my confeſſion; that ſo this penitent ſenſe of mine iniquities (which I thankfully acknow­ledge cometh alone from thee) may be an evi­dence unto me, that thou wilt alſo give me pardon for them.

Lord, I willingly confeſs my ſelf to be a great and grievous ſinner, mine original defiled, my birth polluted, mine infancy ſtained, my youth inſnared, my manhood corrupted, mine age be­ſotted.

Mine imaginations vain, my thoughts ſinfull, my words wicked, mine actions abhominable, my whole life a very ſink of ſin and all unclean­neſs.

When thy hand hath been heavy upon me, I have then promiſed thee amendment; when thy rode hath been taken off from me, I have again returned to mine evil courſes; this plainly ſhew­eth, that I have hitherto ſought but any ſelf in45 thee, and may therefore juſtly fear to be forſaken of thee.

I have been undutiful to thee my God, en­vious and uncharitable to my neighbour, hy­pocritical to the world, deceitful to mine own ſoul.

My thoughts have been wanton, my deſires la­ſcivious, my actions unclean.

I have been blind to thy precepts, deaf to thy promiſes, dumb in thy praiſes, lame in thy ſervices, ſick at thine ordinances, dead to thy imbraces.

I have broken all my promiſes, I have ſlight­ed all thy threatnings, I have abuſed all thy mer­cies, I have rejected all thy favours, I have delayed my repentance, I have reſiſted the checks of mine own conſcience, I have quenched the motions of thy bleſſed Spirit, and turned thy grace into wantonneſs; and yet as if all this had been too little to condemn me, I have moſt daring­ly preſumed on thy mercie, and moſt ungracionſly reſolved to go on in my impieties.

Lord, thou haſt peomiſed to forgive thoſe that repent, to eaſe thoſe that are heavy laden, to raiſe up thoſe that are fallen, to ſatisfie thoſe that are hungry, and to bind up thoſe that are broken-hearted.

O Lord my God, I earneſtly deſire to repent, I am laden with a burthen inſupportable, I am feeble and ſore ſmitten with the terrors of thy Law, my fleſh trembleth, and my heart fainteth; I am fallen into the very mouth of hell, I am ſorely wounded with the remorſe of mine own accuſing conſcience, and hungry for the ſweet refreſhings of thy ſaving grace.

Thou, O Lord, haſt made me ſenſible of this my great miſery, and thou alone canſt make me46 capable of thy rich mercy; unto that mercie there­fore I appeal, with ſighs in my ſoul, and ſorrow in my heart.

O thou which art the bleſſed fountain of all goodneſs, which deſireſt not the death of a ſinner, but rather that he ſhould repent and live, have mercy upon me.

O thou which art the Saviour of the world, which cameſt to ſeek, and to ſave thoſe which were loſt, have mercy upon me.

O holy, and for ever bleſſed Spirit, thou which feedeſt and refreſheſt the diſtreſſed ſoules of thine Elect, have mercy on me.

Let thy power (O bleſſed Father) ſupport my weakneſs; thy wiſdom (O bleſſed Son) ſup­ply my folly; thy love (O bleſſed Spirit) re­ſtrain my wilfulneſs; that as thou art eternally one, ſo I may for ever be at unity with thee, although moſt wofully divided in my ſelf.

Lord, as thou haſt given me a heart to pray unto thee, ſo give me alſo a ſoul to praiſe thee, and a ſerius reſolution to perform thoſe promiſes I make unto thee.

Lord ſweeten all my ſorrows by thy bleſſed ſufferings, inlarge my heart with thankfulneſs for thy many favours, ſtrengthen my weak faith, reſtrain my rebellious nature, increaſe daily in me the gifts and graces of thy bleſſed Spirit; in­due me with a perfect hatred againſt all ſin; and grant, dear God, that daring and preſumptu­ous ſinnes may never have dominion over me. Amen.


CHAP. 14. Upon Quenching the motions of Gods holy Spirit.

COnſider, O my ſoul, from whence theſe happy thoughts ariſe, and wherefore, if they were from nature, they muſt needs ſavour of corruption, but now they are from Grace, they ſummon thee to goodneſs, they beckon thee to immortality: Thy God now calleth thee to repentance; he offers thee his gracious pardon for thy ſin; his love, his protection, his peace, his grace, his glory: He now woeth thee to fa­vour, and thou (a wofull wretch) convicted by thine own accuſing conſcience, condemned by divine Juſtice, rebelliouſly rejecteſt all theſe gracious offers: Ah, what wofull folly is this! nay rather what wilfull madneſs! As there is a time of calling, ſo there will be a time of re­jecting; the bleſſed wind of Gods holy Spirit bloweth but where it liſteth; when it is once gone, thou knoweſt not whether it ſhall ever return: God will have mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth, Rom. 9. Ah wo be unto that ſoul whoſe time of calling is once paſt, a thouſand worlds cannot redeem its loſs. If thou wilt not now embrace theſe com­fortable breathings of his tender love, thou ſhalt then endure the bitter ſtorms of his in­cenſed wrath.

If thou wilt not embrace his Mercy, thou ſhalt exalt his Juſtice: I called unto you (ſaith God) and yee refuſed to come, I held out my hand and ye would not look towards me; therefore will I forſake you in your extremity, when your fear com­eth48 as deſolation, and your deſtruction as a whirlwind, when diſtreſs and anguiſh cometh upon you; then ſhall they call upon me, but I will not anſwer, they ſhall ſeek me early, but they ſhall not find me. Prov. 1.24, 27, 28.

Gods clemency and patience in this life will aſſuredly exaſperate his fury, and revenge, in that to come; as his Mercy is unutterable, ſo his Ju­ſtice is intollerable, both are his divine being, and therefore both muſt needs be infinite; both are to manifeſt his glory, and therefore both muſt be eternall.

From hence is that expreſſion of Saint Vaul, It is a fearfull thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Heb. 10. From hence it is that wicked men are left unto their own ſwing in this life, that they may be payd home with Gods wrath in that to come.

Let this teach thee, O my ſoul, to welcome theſe endeared motions of the gladding Spirit, to thirſt for them, to rejoyce in them, to think no thought too dear to be diſloged for them.

Bleſſed Lord, I hear thee calling thy holy A­poſtle Saint Peter, and I ſee him readily for­ſaking all to follow thee; how often haſt thou called me, a ſinfull wretch, by the ſweet moti­ons of thy bleſſed Spirit; and I have hitherto refuſed to forſake the very leaſt of all my ſins, for thy ſake, who willingly forſookeſt all the pleaſures of this life for mine? Long haſt thou waited my repentance, but I have yet hated to be reformed. Mercy hath been offered, and I have not eſteemed it, Judgement hath been threatned, and I have not regarded it; thou haſt not onely whiſpered unto me by thy graci­ous viſits of thy bleſſed Spirit, but thou haſt e­ven49 called me aloud, by thy divine hand of wholſom chaſtiſement; By loſs of friends, by loſs of means, by loſs of health, by loſs of li­berty, and (without thy rich mercy) by the great danger of that greater loſs of thy Goſpel, and thereby of thy gracious preſence in this life, and thine eternall joys in that to come. All this my ſins have juſtly brought upon me, and yet for all this, my wretched heart deſires to be a ſtranger to thee.

Lord, who am I that thou ſo graciouſly invi­teſt unto mercy? Lord, what am I that now preſume to ſpeak unto thee? I am ſo deformed, and contemptible, that mine own knowledge cometh far ſhort of mine own miſery. O how juſtly mightſt thou for ever leave me to my ſelf, to eat the fruit of mine own wayes, and to be filled with the falſhood of mine own devices, to poſſeſs ſorrow, and inherit ſhame? But thou, O Lord, who art infinite in goodneſs, haſt mani­feſted to my ſinfull ſoul, that when I wretched­ly forſake thee, thou readily forſakeſt all to fol­low me; when I run from thee, thou bewaileſt me; when miſery compels me to return, thou joyfully receiveſt me, thou lovingly relieveſt me, thou then graciouſly accepteſt of me; And now, O Lord, when I have even wearied out thy mercy and compaſſion towards me, thou ſtill inviteſt me to come unto thee.

To thee therefore, O thou bleſſed Shepheard of my ſoul, do I devote theſe penitent expreſſions: O let thoſe tributary tears which are due to thy ſuf­ferings, be now plentifully poured forth for mine own ſins. Lord pardon my contempt of grace, and graciouſly enable me to entertain theſe happy vi­ſits of thy holy Spirit, and patiently to bear theſe50 ſweet chaſtiſements of thy heavenly hand, that I may have fellowſhip with Chriſt, and peace with God.

If thou Lord for the ſins of my proſperity, ſhalt think it fit to bring upon me the miſeries of adverſity, for the great neglect of thy gracious vi­ſits, to deny mee the ſweet comforts of thy bleſſed anſwers, yet give me patience, and ſure confidence to truſt ſtil in thy mercie, that ſo while I am moſt juſtly debarred of my longing deſires, I may not be utterly deprived of thy loving favours.

Lord caſt me not away from thy preſence, O leave me not unto my ſelf, leſt I periſh everlaſt­ingly; make me to ſee the richneſs of thy love and favour towards me: Quicken the motions of thy bleſſed Spirit in me, renew my good thoughts, and ſix them wholly upon heaven and heavenly things; Lord Jeſus make me joyful in them, and for ever truly thankful for them.

Make me willing to enjoy thee, and ready to abandon all things for thee: Lord I now ſeek thee but I cannot find thee, I call upon thee but thou anſwereſt me not: O kiſs me with the kiſſes of thy mouth, for thy love is better than wine.

Lord let thy left hand ſupport me, and thy right hand imbrace me, let me be outwardly, and in­wardly, ſuſtained by thee; my weaknſs by thy power, my rebellion by thine obedience, my folly by thy wiſdom, my pollution by thy ſanctification, my faith by thy fruition; that I may be grieved for thine abſence, delighted in thy preſence, inamored with thy beanty, inriched with thy bounty, infla­med with thy love, adorned with thy graces, com­forted with thy conſolation, incompaſt with thy glory. Amen.


CHAP. 15. Upon the conſideration of Gods peculiar Providence to his Children.


NOthing can befall me in this life, without thy wife, and over-ruling providence; not ſo much as one hair of me can fail without thy allowance; for even my very hairs are num­bred; as a Sparrow cannot fall to the ground, ſo neither a hair from mine head without thy ſacred leave: And if thy bleſſed Providence protecteth theſe inferior creatures, if it extend it ſelf even unto excrements, how much more ſafely doeſt thou guard the bodies, how much more tenderly the ſoules of thine Elect? Yet ſuch is my ſtupidity by nature, that I ſeldom look beyond the ſeond cauſes; I uſually con­tent my ſelf with caſuals and contingencies, and often judge that meerly accidentall, which ſweetly moves by thy commands, to thine ap­pointment and thy childrens good.

Thy Providence is eternall, thy proviſion in time; thou, O Lord, art infinitely wiſe, and cauſt therefore provide infinitely well, the end thou ordaineſt to thy ſelf, the means to thy creature; good and bad are under thy protecti­on; the good for themſelves, the bad for o­thers; both for thy glory; the one thou willeſt to be happy, the other thou permitteſt to be miſerable; neither of them can avoyd their neceſſity of fate, and yet thou neither inclineſt the one, nor inforceſt the other, becauſe unto both in their originall thou gaveſt perfect free­dome52 of will, to chuſe the good, to leave the bad; to inherit life, or purchaſe death.

Bleſſed God, we are all debtors in our firſt Parents, thou mayſt therefore moſt juſtly re­quire that of us, which was lent us in them: They were able to pay, but not willing; we, their wofull poſterity (as we are in nature) are neither able, nor willing; But by thy grace, Lord, we are onely willing, and not able; and thou haſt therefore ſent thine onely Son, who was both freely willing, and fully able, to ap­peaſe thy Juſtice, to reconcile thy Mercy, to comfort us here, to crown us hereafter.

And now, Lord, having given us thy Son, how ſhalt thou not, together with him allſo, give us all things? and yet I often ſee thee gi­ving of good things to the bad, and bad to the good: there is nothing more fiequent in this life than the afflictions of thy children, nothing more common than the proſperity of the wicked, they receive their good things in this life, I ſhall enjoy mine in that to come, when I ſhall be comforted, and they tormented. Thou, O Lord, art righteous in all they waies, and holy in all thy works; thou loadeſt them with thine outward bleſſings, for their outward obedience; thou denieſt me theſe outward favours, for mine inward advantage; by the one they are left inexcuſable; by the other I am made more conformable; my patience exerciſed, my faith tried, my love examined, my humility proved; all theſe are ſpeciall tokens of thy mercy to­wards me; for as grace increaſeth here, ſo ſhall glory hereafter.

Lord, what can he fear that is aſſured of thy favour? that knoweth aſſuredly, that all theſe outward things ſhall work together for the53 beſt, to his advantage? If Joſeph be thrown into the Pit, it is to ſend him into Egypt; if into Priſon, to preſer him to Pharoah, that ſo Corn may be ſent into Canaan; if Satan be ſent to tempt Job with afflictions, it is becauſe Job ſhall overcome Satan by patience; if holy David be­come a ſad ſpectacle of humane frailty by ſin­ning, it is to make him a pattern of true piety in repenting; if the bodies of the Saints be grievouſly martyr'd in this life, it is to array them with glorious robes in that to come.

Lord, let this teach me joyfully to entertain the ſaddeſt of events, which either thy wiſdome, mans unrighteouſneſs, or Satans cruelty, can bring upon me; to be patient under them, and thankfull for them; to ranſake my ſoul, and ſearch diligently there, for what ſin thou ſend­eſt this ſorrow, to bewail it, abhor it, forſake it, and earneſtly implore thy pardon for it: When I am thus happily reſolved, I ſhall then have that undaunted boldneſſe, to ſay with holy Job, Allthough thou killeſt me, yet will I truſt in thee; with holy David, Though I walk through the valley of the ſhadow of death, yet will I fear none evill, for thou Lord art with me; and with thy bleſſed Apoſtle, that I know aſſuredly, that the ſufferings of this life ſhall work for me a far greater and more exceeding weight of glory, in that to come.

To thee therefore, O thou bleſſed Guardian of my ſinfull ſoul, and wretched body, doe I addreſſe my ſelf for ſafety and protection.

I confeſſe, O Lord, there is no one minute of my whole life can be ſafe without thy gratious providence, and yet ſo wretched have I been, that few or none of them have been devoted to thy ſervice.


Lord, I am not worthy of the leaſt of all thy mercies, and of all thy truth thou haſt afforded me; even the very beſt of all my actions hath juſtly merited the very worſt of all thy puniſh­ments, and yet thou daily loadeſt me with thy bleſſings, allthough I hourly ſin againſt thee, by my great tranſgreſſions.

Forgive me my unmindfulneſſe of theſe thy mercies, my great unthankfulneſſe for all thy fa­vours, and fix my ſinfull ſoul more willingly, more joyfully, more fervently, more conſtantly, on thy ſervice.

Teach me to keep a catalogue of thy mercies, to let none paſſe without a thankfull and devout acknowledgement; to ſet ſome daies apart from the year, ſome hours from each day, to praiſe thee for them.

Forgive the pride of my proſperity, my care­leſneſſe of thee, my coldneſſe unto thine, my croſſe­neſſe unto others, my cruelty to my ſelf.

Lord pardon my repinings in adverſity, my diſtaſt of thy power, my diſtruſt of thy providence, my deniall of thy wiſdome, my refuſall of thy love, my contempt of thy favour, my neglect of thy grace, my deſpair of thy goodneſſe.

O give me ſuch a bleſſed frame of heart, that I may chearfully and joyfully content my ſelf, to walk in whatſoever paths thy bleſſed providence ſhall lead me to: O hold thou up my goings in thoſe paths, that my feet ſlip not; teach me to make a gratious and a ſweet improvement of theſe outward croſſes, a bleſſed and a wiſe advan­tage of thine inward graces: Lord lead me by thy counſell here, and afterwards receive me to thy glory. Amen.


CHAP. 16. Upon ſinfull Anger, and the great diſ­turbance thereof.


WHen I conſider of thy patience, and long-ſuffering towards me, a miſerable ſinner, of the lowlineſſe of thy Saints, and of the great humility and meekneſſe of my Saviour in his ſufferings, I much deplore the wofull weakneſſe of mine own infirmities, and more admire the richneſſe of thy goodneſſe, in admitting me to ſpeak unto thee.

What pleaſure, Lord, canſt thou take in that ſervice which is all ſin? how canſt thou delight in that which thou abhorreſt? thou art a God of pure eyes, and canſt not behold iniquity; if all my righteouſneſſe be in thy ſight as filthy rags, and menſtiuous clothes, how full of ug­lineſſe and deformity will my ſins then appear before thee?

Ah Lord, thou haſt often ſen how eaſily, how ſuddenly, how wretchedly, I have been ſwallowed up of ſinfull paſſion; how I have violated that invaluable peace which thou haſt given me, by revengefull thoughts, by deſpight­full words, by diſturbing actions: I know no­thing in my corrupt nature, but to know my ſelf miſerable; I ſee nothing in this miſery, but terrour and confuſion, affliction to my body, deſtruction to my ſoul; all occurrences of this life ſhould have rather added to my growth of grace, than diſturbance of nature: I have hi­therto been groſſely miſtaken, in calling that a56 defect of my body, which is in truth an er­ror in my ſoul: Nature was at firſt created pure, no diſobedience was then in the paſſi­ons, Man hath marred it by his Fall: all the Streams that are now troubled flow from this Fountain; this barren excuſe therefore is ſo far from leſſening ſin, that it makes it bigger. I am now ſo much the more ſtained by committing actuall ſin, as I ſhould have been more holy, and am not, ſince original.

Lord, let this teach me to deal truly with my ſoul, to uncloath my ſelf of all ſinfull excuſes, that ſo ſin may appear truly what it is, and may become out of meaſure ſinfull; that mine Anger may be holy, my application of it happy, that nothing may diſturb me but ſin; that I may be a Lyon in thy cauſe, a Lamb in mine own; that when I hate the ſin, I may love the perſon; when I rebuke the offence, I may pray heartily for the offender; ſo ſhall I zea­louſly enjoy thee my God, religiouſly em­brace my neighhour, patiently poſſeſs mine own ſoul.

And now, Lord, as thou haſt given me an heart to confeſs my ſins of impatience before thee, ſo give me a ſweet aſſurance in my Savi­our, that by him I have aſſured pardon for them.

If thou Lord for my ſinfull Anger ſhalt inflict upon me thy ſevere wrath; and for my long con­tinuing in my ſins, the long duration of thy pu­niſhments; yet let not thy ſeveritie exceed the meaſure of my Chriſtian charity; though thou continueſt my miſeries, yet withdraw not thy mercies. O make me more and more humble unto thee my God, and more and more meek amongſt57 thy children; conform me to that bleſſed pattern of true piety and patience; that as a ſheep in thy hands (my bleſſed Shearer) ſo I may be dumb, and not open my mouth againſt thee.

Lord baniſh from me all deſires of revenge; let Patience have its perfect work, to quiet me here, and crown me hereafter,

I confeſs my ſelf to be a great and grievous ſin­ner, and yet I am thy creature; my body is thine, and my ſoul is thine, both were joyned in thy creation, and both are joyned in my devotion; both have ſinned againſt thee, O let them both be humbled before thee, not to ſatisfie thy Juſtice, but to implore thy Mercy; not to merit thy Grace, but to magnifie thy Goodneſs.

Lord make me truly ſenſible of the greatneſs of thy miſery, that I may the more devoutly, the more ſincerely, ſue to thee for mercy: Forgive the many violent erupcions of my ſinfull paſſions, give me a meek and humble ſpirit, that I may happily enjoy thy preſence, and mine own con­tent. Lord grant that I may patiently and joy­fully imbrace the wrongs and injuries of this life, for thy ſake, who haſt been patient even to death for mine.

Let that be made eaſie unto me by thy grace; which by nature is impoſſible, that nothing may delight me but thy love, nothing grieve me but thy diſpleaſure, nothing offend me but thy diſhonour. Amen.


CHAP. 17. Upon mans inordinate love to the Creature.

WO is me that I am conſtrained to live in Meſhech, and to dwell in the tents of Ce­dar; wo is me that I was conceived in ſin, that I was born in ſin, and that I have ſo long been captive to the power of ſin: How vain am I, how wretched, to beguil my ſelf of reſt and quietneſs? O how unworthy to defile my Mariage vows, to proſtitute my love to theſe unclean, and falſe embraces of a ſnfull world, to dig unto my ſelf theſe broken Ciſterns of im­pure and empty joys, and to forſake thoſe living waters of eternall life: O wofull cateif, if I well conſider what I am; but ſar more wo­full, if I ſeriouſly conſider what I ſhould be.

Lord, when I was in my blood, thou ſaidſt unto me, Live; when I was caſt out, and none eye pittied me, then thou hadſt mercy on me; when I was naked thou clothedſt me, when I was wounded thou healedſt me; nay more, Lord, thou didſt uncloath thy ſelf for me, and by thy wounds I am healed; when I was loath­ſom in mine own eyes, I was beautifull in thine; and when all this is not yet enough to manifeſt thy wonderfull compaſſions towards me, thou feedeſt me at thine own Table, thou lodgeſt me in thine own boſom, thou makeſt me partaker of thine own inheritance.

Bleſſed God, what couldeſt thou have done more for me that thou haſt not done? And yet for all this I forſake thee, I neglect thee, I59 abuſe thee, I adulterate thoſe many vows and promiſes I made unto thee: And now, Lord, when I am even aſhamed to preſent my ſelf be­fore thee, when my falſe heart hath been ſo great a ſtranger to thy bleſſed boſom, that I am even afraid to kneel to thee for mercy; thou graci­ouſly forgiveſt me, thou bemoaneſt my ſin, thou hideſt my ſhaure, thou makeſt love unto me, and (to the wonder of my ſoul) delighteſt ſtill to ſet thy love upon me.

Thou, O my bleſſed Saviour, haſt told me, that if I were of this World, it would love me, but now I am not of this World, that the World hateth me: Lord, what madneſs is this in me to love mine utter enemy? to de­light in her boſom, which hunteth for my precious life? to forlake thee, the pleaſant Lil­ly of the Vallies, the ſweet Refreſhments of E­ternity, to weary out, and wound my ſoul a­mongſt the Bryars of this barren Wilderneſs? Thou Lord, haſt ſayd unto me, Ariſe my Love, my Fair one, and come away; thou inviteſt me from the ſhowers and tempeſts of a ſtormy Win­ter, from the cares and troubles of a diſconten­ted life, to the ſweet dews of thy graces, the gentle breathings of thy Spirit, the tender buds of thy love, the lovely bloſſems of thy good­neſs, the pleaſant fruit of thy promiſes, the joyfull crop of thy performances: And notwith­ſtanding all this I ſtill cry, yet a little more ſleep, yet a little more number, yet a little more folding of the hands together; yet a little more ſin, yet a little more ſhame, yet a little more ſorrow.

Ah, Lord, what is there in the creature, that thus ſtrangely bewitcheth me? or rather, what is there not in it, that is not every minute60 ready to betray me, and diſpoyl me of thoſe pre­cious ornaments of ſoul which thou haſt given me; the cares and croſſes of this life aſflict me, the pleaſures beſot me, the profits diſturb me, pride puffeth me up, and even mine own heart deceiveth me; by calling good evill, and evill good; by making that ſweet in the expectati­on, which is bitter in the fruition: Lord, while I have ſought the creature, I have loſt my ſelf, my body in diſtempers, my ſoul in diſtracti­ons.

That precious Faith which is the ground of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not ſeen, whoſe end is the ſalvation of my ſoul, which is thy gift who art the God of truth, is now drowned in a ſea of error, and juſtly gi­ven up to believe dreams and deluſions, and doctrines of Devils; to truſt wholly in vanity, and to follow after lying.

That ſaving knowledge, by which I was for­merly enlightned in thy ſacred Truths, is now blinded with the ſoggy miſts of ſin and igno­rance: This, Lord, is my great aggravation, and juſt condemnation, that light is come into the world, and I have loved darkneſs better than light.

That glorious hope which maketh not aſha­med, but exſpecteth an inheritance eternall in the heavens, which fadeth not away, is now become a vain and empty hope, delighted with ſin, rewarded with ſhame.

Thoſe bleſſed affections by which my happy ſoul was wont to walk in thy wayes, and to delight it ſelf in thy commands, are now wea­ried out in wayes of wickedneſs; and that heart which hath ſo often promiſed obedience unto thee any thy Laws, hath now forſaken61 thee the living God, and made a covenant with death and hell.

Thus am I robbed and ſpoyled of</