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A SERMON PREACHED (before God, and from him) To the Honourable Houſe of COMMONS.

At a publike Faſt, Novemb. 27. in the yeare

GoD Is oVr refVge, oVr ſtrength; a heLpe In troVbLes VerIe aboVnDant VVe fInDe.

By George Gipps Rector of Elſton in Leiceſter-ſhire, one of the ASSEMBLY of DIVINES.

Publiſhed by ORDER of the ſaid HOUSE.

LONDON, Printed for Chriſtopher Meredith at the Signe of the Crane in Pauls-Church-yard, 1645.

ORdered by the Commons aſſembled in Par­liament, That M. Salloway and M. Knightly, do from this Houſe give Thanks to M. Pic­kering and M. Gipps, for the great pains they took in the Sermons they preached this day, at the in­treatie of this Houſe at S. Margarets Weſtminſter, it being a day of publike Humiliation, and to deſire them to print their Sermons. And it is ordered, That none ſhall preſume to print their or either of their Sermons without leave under their or either of their hand writing.

H. Elſynge Cler. Parl. D. Com.
I doe appoint Christopher Meredith to print this Sermon,

TO THE HONOVRABLE Houſe of COMMONS Aſſembled in Parliament at Weſt­minſter.

SEeing it is made a matter of courſe and order, that we ſpeake to you in print; and that you preſſe me to the print, which whilest I remained a Volunteere I have not hitherto been guilty of; Imprimatur, I ſay not, Cum Privilegio, that I am not ſo ambitious to challenge; nor ex mero permiſſu, this were more ambitious to affect: but my preſent ſcantling is, Juſſu Superiorum, which I cheerefully obey, the rather becauſe ſweetned alſo cum gratia. For ſo your Or­der phraſeth it, You are deſired to print, namely by them, who may Command: which is ſo farre from weakning, that it ſtrengthneth the Command by a double tye of Obedience. Qui impetrare vo ut cum•…­perare poſſunt, ij obligant dum obſecrant.I hope therefore that this Sermon may croud through the preſſe, as many a meaner perſon doth with others of greater note. Gods Bleſsing go with it, ſo to imprint the truths there­of in the hearts of the Readers, that the uſe thereof may be read in the courſe of their lives.

I only adde in mine owne behalfe two things: First, I having nothing wherein to boast, but mine infirmities, both of minde and body, doe confeſſe that I ſhall not be able to preſent to your eyes in the ſame dreſſe of words that I did to your eares, thoſe ſelfe ſame notions; the no­tions were duly penned, the words not, my memory would not beare it; how ever the debt be not payed in the ſelfe ſame covne, which I did then tell forth unto you, yet I hope you ſhall have the just ſumme in value to your content, and my diſcharge, I having withall ſaved the burden of carrying in memory the words. Secondly, whereas to ſpare the wearying of you, as much as of my ſelfe, I did cut off the better part of the laſt point, I ſhall now pay down unto you the arrerages not formerly ten­der'a, with whatever was overſeene in the former tel­ling; I returne (with Joſephs brethren) with double mony in this ſacks mouth. I deſire you to daigne me this favour, in lieu whereof for the preſent I ſhall only adde that I am

Your moſt humble Servant in the Cauſe of God and of Chriſt, GEORGE GIPPS.

A Sermon Preached to the Honoura­ble Houſe of Commons on their Mo­nethly Faſt Novem. 27. 1644.

PSAL. 46. 1.God is our refuge and ſtrength, a very preſent helpe in trouble.

THis being the firſt verſe of the Pſalme,Gratiarum a­ctiapro miraus. loſit beneficijs divinis, &c. Quam caneat Iſrael, &c. Quem pſalmum eccleſia nunc cait in laudem Dei potenter & mirabiliter eccleſiam & verbum ſuum to ſervantis contra. it is inde­pendent: neither ſhall I trouble you with the title of the Pſalme, but only uſher in my Text with Luthers deſcant upon the Pſalme. It is (ſaith he) a thankſgiving to God for his wonder­full benefits, in keeping his Church ſafe from all the Enemies thereof, thoſe nations which circled them in on every ſide, who both in hoſtile and perfidious manner ſought their utmoſt ruine. This therefore the Iewes ſang to ſupport their faith, and to raiſe their fainting ſpirits in all their extremi­ties:1. Hereſes p•…­naticorum ſpi­rituum. 2. Tor­que tyrannos. which alſo (addeth he) let us now ſing to the honour of God, powerfully and miraculouſly preſerving his word and Church.

Againſt the errours and hereſies of giddy brain'd ſpirits,3. Impugnatio­nem, mundi car­rs & peccati.

Againſt the power and policy of cruell tyrants.

Againſt the baits of ſinne, the world, and the fleſh,

Againſt all malice of Satan by all his engineers. 4. Et huic con­tra portas inſe­rorum & infi­nitū odum dia­boli. Luther•….

A Pſalme in all theſe reſpects as well ſuiting our preſent, as both thoſe former times and conditions. Thus therefore we2 cloſe with our Text, wherein (according to my uſuall method) I propound theſe three things.

  • 1. Explication of the ſence of the words.
  • 2. Obſervation of their doctrinall truths.
  • 3. Application thereof to our owne behoofe.

Begin we with the firſt, the Explication, wherein we ſhould not at all trouble you with the diverſity of readings of Expoſitors,Concordia dſ­•…rs, Dicord­dia concors. did not their harping upon ſeverall ſtrings make up a full harmo­ny of ſence: ſtrange it is, yet not ſo ſtrange as true, that their jarring doth fill up the ſweet muſicall ſence. Breifly my tongue ſhall tune them, that your eares may deſeant upon the words in order.

1. God,58. words. even that God whom Paul deſcribeth. Acts 17. 24. that made the world, and all things therein: that dwelleth not in Temples made with hands. ver. 28. In whom we live and move and have our beeing. This for the firſt word.

The 2. followeth, Is as we reade it. Others, ſhall be. Others neither, nor any thing in lieu thereof, but ſimply, God our re­fuge. So is the Originall. All which differing readings in one give us the full ſence thus. Experimentally, God is: reſolvedly, God ſhall be: pathetically, God our refuge, an exclamation with ex­ultation. Raviſhed affections utter broken ſentences, with elevati­on of voice, tranſported above rules of Grammer. Experience of Gods mercies paſſed rightly improved, beget reſolution for the time to come, and from both an exultation of the heart in admiration of Gods mercy. Let this ſuffice for the ſecond word.

The 3. followeth. Our, which ſome reade affixed to God, thus our God; others to refuge, thus, God is our refuge. Both united give the full ſence, thus, Our God is our refuge. Firſt make we God our God by Covenant, then may we make him our refuge by claime. This for the third word.

The 4. followeth. Refuge, as we reade it, others Hope, others Shelter. Which three thus differ. Hope is that grace in our hearts, which putteth us upon refuge (which ſignifieth a flight, or fly­ing and mooving) by which flight we arrive at ſhelter to repoſe our ſelves in. All which three readings joyned make up the full3 ſence, thus, A heart rightly anchored by hope in God, may ſafely fly unto him, and ſo doing, ſecurely ſhelter himſelfe in him. Suffice this for the fourth word. Ainſworth. God will be to us a hopefull ſhelter, and a ſtrength, a helpe in di­ſtreſſes we ſhall find very great: to wit, a very great helpe in di­ſtreſſes we ſhall find him, or, he is found; or a helpe in di­ſtreſſes which we ſhall find very great.

The 5. followeth (And) ſtrength. Not only ſtrong in the concrete, but ſtrength it ſelfe in the abſtract: that is abſolute, infinite and alfufficient ſtrength. And ſo it may looke, either back­ward to ſhelter, or forward to helpe. Both are moſt full, thus, God is ſo all ſufficient in ſtrength that who fly to him for ſhelter, ſhall certainely have help from him. This for the fifth word.

The 6. followeth (A) help, or helper. So is it diverſely read. The former ſignifieth the quality, the latter the perſon ſo qua­lified: both in one make up our fulnes or comfort. God who un­dertaketh, is fully gifted and qualified for what he undertaketh: not as many men beare the name of what they have no skill to per­forme, both in Church and State. Let this ſatisfie for the ſixth word.

The 7. followeth (In) trouble, or troubles. So are the ſeverall readings;Hieror. out of the Hebrew reades it thus. all comes up to one full ſence. The former the ſingular number, ſo take it diſtributively, in each and any ſingle trouble whatſoever: the latter the plurall number,Deus noſtra ſpes & fortitu­do, auxilium in tribulationibus inventus es va­lidum. And out of the Sep­tuagints thus. ſo take it collectively, in all troubles doubled and multiplyed how many ſoever. The next word will perfect theſe, which we paſſe unto.

The 8. and laſt word (or rather words and phraſe) very preſent, ſo we reade it: but the originall with divers tranſlations expreſſe the verbe Find, and that either thus, we ſhall find very preſent, great, aboundant: yea too too preſent, great and aboundant. And all theſe ſeverall readings are the leaſt part of the variety of their expoſitions;Deus noſter reſugium & virius adiutor in tribulationi­bus quae ime­nerunt nos ni­mis. Whom Auguſtine and generally the ancients fol­low, Ambroſi­us thus gloſ­ſeth on it. Be. for as much as ſome, to fill up the ſence, doe joyne them to (helpe) thus: we ſhall find (God) a very preſent, yea too too preſent, great and aboundant help: others to troubles thus: God a helpe in very preſent, yea too too preſent, great and aboundant troubles which we ſhall find. A third ſort joyne both in one, and take all together, as the moſt full ſence, thus, Gods Saints in this life are ſure to find very preſent, great and aboundant troubles, yea too great for them to beare, but that their comfort is, that they are as ſure to find God a very preſent, great and aboundant helpe in all thoſe their troubles: yea too great to be overcome by them. Some4 more varieties of readings there are of leſſe moment, which I ſhall paſſe over when I ſhall have acquainted you with Auguſtins deſcant: namely,•…atimes & ad•…atorem: ut•…culati­ones abundant, ad•…at Moll•…us Deus nobis pro•…obur, aux­•…. in tribu­laationibus abualè,•…in­•…entus eſt val­. in as much as the verbe (finde) may alſo be read (Be found) paſſively: we find in the world outward troubles: but me are found of our ſinnes, which doe dogge us home to our con­ſciences, troubling them: and theſe are thoſe too too great troubles: but herein alſo is our comfort, that we are found of God as a helpe in this moſt deſperate caſe alſo: For ſo, Acts 2. upon Peters prea­ching their crucifying of the Sonne of God, their ſinne found them out, that they were pricked at the heart, and cryed out, what ſhall we doe? yet heard this word of comfort, Repent and be baptiſed for the remiſſion of your ſinnes, and ye ſhall re­ceive the gift of the holy Ghoſt. What may not be forgiven when this is forgiven, for a patient to kill his Phiſitian comming to cure him: yea and ſo forgiven, as the bloud of that Phiſitian, which they let out, is given him to drinke for his perfect cure: Thus Auguſtine. Non invene­rum peccata•…ua ſea inventi­ſunt in eis: ſed•…nerunt ad­•…torium: Quid•…us agro quam〈…〉dimit­ditur, quid non•…ttitur? ag­•…ite & bap­•…zemint,•…s. Au­ſtin.Give me leave to adde one thing more to com­pleat the ſence, and ſo put an end to the firſt generall part pro­pounded, the explication of the words. There being no other verbe in the Originall Hebrew expreſſed but this,inde: not that other, is, or ſhall be, nor any other in liew thereof, what ne­ceſſity is there that we ſupply any? but ſtring all the words of our text upon this verbe, Find (which we find in the Hebrew) and let it runne through them all, making one entile rich chaine thus, we ſhall find God our refuge, ſtrength and very preſent helpe in trouble: thus in our Engliſh; not to repeat the deſcants any more. Thus of the explication.

The ſecond generall followeth, Obſervation of the doctri­nall truths: where give me leave, firſt to recount all thoſe hither­to found out, and thence to cull out ſome choice ones.

Liſt, Owne we that one only God that made all, &c. as Acts 17.

Second, Reſt we not, untill we have made this God our God, by moſt ſure and firme covenant.

Third, So doing, wee may ſecurely anchor our hope in him.

Fourth, So hoping, we may in all ſtraights fly unto him.

Fifth, So flying, he will give us ſhelter and harbour.

5Sixth, And yet no tottering ſhelter, but of ſtrength alſuffici­ent.

Seventh, Yet not ſecuring us from finding troubles very pre­ſent, great and aboundant, exceeding our ſtrength to beare.

Eighth, Yet with this comfort, that in all of them we are ſure to find God a more preſent, great and aboundant helper, moſt able and willing to helpe us through.

Ninth, Haſten we to find out our ſinnes by repentance, leaſt that we be found out by them in an accuſing conſcience.

Tenth, Yet even therein is our comfort, that we ſhall upon our repentance for the moſt hainous ſinnes, be found out of God in pardon and forgiveneſſe; yea if we are of the election of grace, we ſhall be ſought and found out of God, to bring us to repentance and ſalvation.

Laſtly, from all this joyntly in one, let us ſo gather experiments of what is paſt, as to ſettle our reſolution for that which is to come, and from both exult we with elevation both of heart and voice; We ſhall find God our refuge, and strength, a very preſent helpe in trouble.

A Text full of comfort, were we as full of faith to improve it with beſt advantage to our ſoules.

But however all theſe are excellent divine truths, and might plentifully be made good out of Gods word: yet in as much as they are but ſeverall deſcants, yea and diſcords, upon our text, although thus ſtruck into muſicall harmony; I ſhall rather containe my ſelfe within the plain ſong thereof, held forth unto you in theſe three following Propoſitions.

Firſt,A three-fold Propoſition. That it is the Portion of Gods Church and Children to finde in and through this life very preſent (yea too too preſent) great and aboundant troubles, for them to wade thorough.

Second, That it is the wiſdome of Gods Church and Children, to make God their hope, refuge, and ſhelter in all theſe troubles.

Third, That it is the comfort of Gods Church and Children, that ſo doing they ſhall find God a very preſent (yea too too preſent) great and aboundant helpe in all theſe troubles.

Thus we have paſſed from our firſt Branch of our Method pro­pounded, namely the Explication of the ſenſe of the words, unto6 the ſecond branch thereof, the Obſervations doctrinall: which in their method we proceed to handle, with their Uſe and Appli­cation.

Only to ſave multiplyed labour, theſe three points being ſo in nature linked together, that very many Texts of Scripture doe prove them all joyntly, we will premiſe thoſe Scripture proofes, and referre you thereto in the ſeverall and diſtinct handling of the points. Thus Pſal. 18. generally throughout: particularly, ver. 4. The ſorrowes of death compaſſed me, the flouds of ungodly men made me afraid, ſo ver. 5. there is the firſt point. Ver. 2. My God, my rocke, my fortreſſe, my ſtrength, my buckler, my high tower, in whom I will truſt: there is the ſecond point. ver. 2. my deliverer. ver. 3. l will call upon the Lord, ſo ſhall I be ſaved from mine enemies, ver. 48. He delivereth me from mine enemies. &c. there is the third point. So Pſal. 34. 19. Many are the afflictions of the Righteous (the firſt point) but the Lord delivereth him out of all (the third point) v. 22. None that truſt in him ſhall be deſolate (the ſecond and third point joyntly) ſo inweaved into all the Pſalm. So frequently elſe­where: we ſhall occaſionally overtake them in our following diſcourſe: wherefore enter we upon our firſt Propoſition.

That it is the Portion of Gods Church and Children to find in this life very (yea too too preſent) great and aboundant troubles. The firſt Pro­poſition.The ra­tifying of which truth ſhall be, firſt, in a briefe enumeration of theſe troubles. Secondly, in deducing thence Concluſions. For the firſt; The troubles in this life are either Temporall, or Spirituall. Temporall, are either reſpecting temporall life it ſelfe, death, with paines, and ſickneſſe tending thereto: or re­ſpecting the Accommodations thereof, as poverty, and ſo want of convenient meat, drinke, cloathing and dwelling; alſo infamy, and ſo ſcorne, diſgrace, contempt, ſlander (to choiſe ſpirits this moſt ſeazeth on the braine.) Spirituall troubles are the body of imbred concupiſcence, that ſnake in our boſome: thence fowle temptations to actuall ſinnes, too much prevailing, ſometimes to groſſ ſcandall: thence often ſpirituall deſertions, God writing bitter things againſt us, and giving us up to Satans buffettings. More, and farre more accurately might we reckon them; but this will ſuffice to inferre hence,

7Our following Concluſions,2. 4. Concluſions. which are theſe foure:

Firſt, All theſe evils are common to all Adams off-ſpring, both godly and wicked alike in this life. Eccleſ. 9. 1. None know­eth love or hatred by all that is before them. ver. 2. All commeth alike to all, to the righteous and to the wicked. v. 3. One event is unto all. Iob 5. 6, 7, proves both the firſt & the ſecond Con­cluſion: in that it is ſaid born, not created thereto. This deluge brake in by our tall.Secondly, this common condition did not flow from our creation by Gods ſoveraigne right of dominion, but is an act of Gods juſtice upon Adams fall, Gods puniſhment upon all his poſterity, whereby the whole world of creatures is curſed unto them, as Gen. 3. appeares the execution of that doome, Gen. 2. In the day thou eateſt thereof thou ſhalt ſurely die. Thirdly, yet in the upſhot thereof ſhall be a vaſt difference between the Godly and wicked, even, as vaſt, as there is a diſtance betweene the higheſt Heaven and the loweſt hell. Matt. 25. 32. ſeparate them as the goates and ſheep, with a Come ye bleſſed, v. 34. & v. 41. Depart yecurſed. v. 46. and the righteous ſhall goe into life eternall, and the wicked into everlaſting puniſhment. Fourthly, In the interim the one and the other doe quite contrarily entertain, and improve theſe troubles: For firſt, the ungodlies great trouble is their tem­porall evils, ſo as in compare thereof they are inſenſible of ſpiritu­all ones, (except ſuch as diſquiet their temporall injoyments) The godly are quite contrary herein. For ſecondly, whereas the un­godly would never be weary of ſin, even though wearied in ſin, but covet to be able to ſin infinitely, and rejoyce in life it ſelfe with all the accommodations thereof, only ſo farre as they inable them to glat themſelves with their luſts, though there be (how much more if there were not) an internall hell of Conſcience, and infernall hell of torments to follow: the godly (ſteeme a ſinning condition to be the moſt helliſh condition, and perfect holineſſ: they eſteeme the top-branch of their eternall happineſſe. And thirdly, whereas the wicked could be contented never to ſee God face, and enjoy his favour in Heaven, ſo that they might ne­ver find his frowne and feele his wrath in hell; the righteous on the contrary acknowledge Gods favour better then life it ſelfe, in whoſe preſence is fulneſſe of joy, and at whoſe right hand are pleaſures for evermore.

Let this ſuffice for the Doctrinall part of this firſt Propoſition:Ʋſe. 18the firſt uſe whereof is, for ſatisfaction of that querulous query: why God will be ſo harſh to his owne children, as the doctrine doth hould forth. The anſwer to which is two-fold. Firſt, that he ſeemeth ſo, in putting them into a common condition with others in the kindes of their ſufferings: but truly is not ſo, through the vaſt difference, not only in the cloſe, but in carrying them along throughout all their ſufferings, All doth co-work for their ſpirituall and eternall good, as hath in part and will occaſionally be more fully ſpecified. A ſecond further anſwer is: that this Gods providence ſuiteth beſt with his moſt wiſe diſpenſation: thus. Firſt, did the Godly wholy eſcape, and the wicked only ſuffer troubles, this would make ſuch multitudes of mercinarie formall Chriſtians, that ſincerity would not be diſcerned nor valued: whereas ſeeing that we muſt through many tribulations enter into the kingdome of heaven, it ſo ſlaveth off hypocrites, that it is a notable tryall to ſincerity it ſelfe. Satan thought it little to Iobs commendations,Iob. 1. 9. that he ſerved God whilſt that God had made an hedge about him, but thought that afflictions would have ſtaggered and ſhattered his faith, though that Iob confuteth him therein, which was a great foyle to Satan. Many can ſwallow dry meat for the pleaſantnes of the ſauce. Therefore God orders Chriſtian profeſſion to have ſower ſauce, to ſee if we will imbrace it meerly and intirely for Chriſt his ſake. Second­ly, on the contrary; did the wicked only eſcape, and the godly only were troubled; this would too much daunt theſe, and in­courage thoſe: ſeeing, that though it be not ſo, yet the waters appeare too troubled. How did Iohs friends charge him for an hy­pocrite, becauſe God had ſo afflicted him? which proved ſo great a tryall, that in the like caſe it did ſtagger David, and ſwelled up his adverſaries, that the Church ſuffered, and they proſpered. Yea this moved patient Moſes to be ſo ſtrangely importunate with God, not to deſtroy Iſrael in the wildernes, leaſt the Egyp­tians ſhould ſay,Exod. 32. 11, 12 Numb. 14. 16. God brought them forth of Egypt for miſchiefe, to ſlay them in the mountaines; Yea, becauſe not able to bring them into Canaan. Therefore Gods wiſdome hath ordered it, that his juſtice ſhall be ſatsfied by all ſuffering alike troubles, and his grace and mercy ſhewed, by ſo ſanctifying troubles unto his9 childrens good, both of Grace and of Glory. See more here­of hereafter

Uſe 2A ſecond Uſe is Exhortation, that we ſhuffle not off troubles when God ſendeth them, but patiently imbrace, and ſanctifiedly improve them: for feare that God double and treble them upon us for this our avoiding this common portion of mankind, a more ſpeciall livery which Chriſt (even ſince he was clad him­ſelfe therewith) hath put upon all his diſciples to weare. 2. Tim. 2. 12Had we in England thus ſympathiſed with the Churches in Germany, and France, yea, more lately of Ireland, and Scotland, by Prayers and teares for them, with other ſuccour and aide, according to their neceſſities and our abilities, together with ſelf-reformation, moſt probably we might have eſcaped this fierce ſtorme, that is now pouring downe upon our own pates,Ezek. 9. 4, 5, 6. Amos 6. 1, 3, 6, 7. Matth. 11. 17. even therefore becauſe we did put farre off the evill day, when God ſummoned us to it. But alack we are ſo farre from ſharing with our Brethrens ſuffe­rings, that we will not owne that generall charge of all Chriſti­ans at all times, to be crucified to the world, and the world unto us: to uſe the world as if we uſed it not, by ſitting looſe unto it, and not faſhioning our ſelves after it, with the like, which in the middeſt of proſperity we ſhould doe, and yet in our moſt ſad pre­ſent condition (when ſummoned to mourning and faſting) we pleaſe our ſelves in the vaine delights of worldlings, that never knew nor taſted better, yea, and that with pleading for, and pra­ctiſing of the ſame, and that by Miniſters of Chriſt, who would be counted faithfull. I never heard nor ſaw the like in all my life, untill within theſe very few dayes; in ſo much as when I came up to London, (upon your Summons unto this preſent publike imployment) and was ſhewed ſuch and ſuch Divines of note, I had much adoe to beleeve it, and ſtill it lieth as Lead at my heart, to conſider what ruffianly haire, what Cavalerian garbe of cloths, with anſwerable diet we are fallen upon, even in theſe ſad times, as eaſie and looſe herein, as rigid and ſtrict in what is both of ſmaller evidence and conſequence. Let me eaſe my heart, and diſcharge my Conſcience in ſome meaſure herein. As the King­dome of Heaven ſtands not in meats and drinks, ſo the heires of this Kingdome ſhould not ſtand ſo much for them, nor take care for wordly pomp and pleaſure: for after all theſe things ſeeke the10 Gentiles,Matt. 6. 32, 33. this is Chriſts argument, namely, becauſe they want better, as in the oppoſition followeth: but ſeek ye firſt the King­dome of God: and having met with ſuch choiſe game, ye will never ſtoope to, nor ſtraine for ſo poore delights: as the Grey­hound, that is well enter'd at the ſtately Deere, will never again ſtraine hard after the ſilly goe-by-ground Hare. Out voluntary exemplar abſtinence ſhould evidence, not that we are not wor­thy of the world, but that it is not worthy of us: not that theſe things are too good for us, but we for them to place our affecti­ons thereon: ſhall we, becauſe we refuſe to have holy veſtments pinned on us by Canon, confute this no way, but by all looſe, new, coſtly attire, and faſhions, Cavaleere-like, that nothing of our outſide may have any colour, or ſhew of gravity, and mo­deſty? Certainly it was not ſo within theſe few yeares, when the poore fugitives poſted to new England in another cut of haire and clothing. True, by their fruits you ſhall know them: and are not temperance and modeſty ſome of theſe fruits? In ſo many thouſand plants, which God hath created, the Herbaliſt is able to diſtinguiſh each one, not only by their fruits, but even by their leafes alſo, both for colour and cut: and ſure our outward dreſſe (with your leave) may anſwer thereto, if not unto fruits. Whe­ther doe the Divines of other Reformed Churches, who owne no holy veſtments, take this Chriſtian Liberty (if not rather un­chriſtian licentiouſneſſe) to themſelves? How ſhall we weane others from that teat, which we ſo banker after our ſelves? A Law from great Perſons that poore men kill not Deere and Partridge, whilſt themſelves doe it ſo eagerly, breeds the higher eſteeme thereof, and a more longing deſire to doe the like, and yet there are in our like caſe, who, having no colourable plea for it, feare no colours to doe it. But I take up, and crave par­don, that I have ſo eagerly followed the game, whilſt in view, O that it may prove the hunting it to death, and then I ſhall thinke it labour well ſpent.

I adde as briefly a third Uſe,Ʋſe 3namely Exhortation, that we make and keep Covenant with God to be our God: and breake not with him, ſo will not he breake with us: By Faith, Feare, Love, and univerſall Obedience to his whole revealed will, the11 only effectuall meanes to take us off from the world, and ſo to improve aright the former Uſe, Deut. 4. 29, 30, 31. which I com­mend to your reading, and ſo

I paſſe unto the ſecond Propoſition,The ſecond Propoſition. namely, That it is the wiſ­dome of Gods Church and Children, to make God their hope, refuge, and ſhelter in all theſe their troubles. The proofe of Scripture I gave you in the generall of all the three Doctrines; we ſhall now adde the demonſtrative grounds of reaſon, which are ſummarily theſe twaine. Firſt, becauſe in God is full, certaine, and ſuffici­ent helpe in all troubles. Secondly, becauſe out of God in no Creature, no not in all the Creatures, is there full, certaine, and ſuf­ficient help. If theſe two be as ſtrongly confirmed, as they are eaſily affirmed, I am ſure you cannot queſtion the validity of their proofe: For as much as inſtinct of nature teacheth every creature to fly thither for ſhelter, where it hopeth for help, and ſuccour;Pſal. 104. 18. Prov. 30. 26. as both David and Salomon tell us, that the Conies fly unto the holes of the rockes, as the Goats to the ſteep craggy tops thereof. Our only work therfore is, to make good theſe 2. reaſons.

The former one being the affirmative, and the expreſſe third Doct. we ſhall meet with it ſeaſonably there.

In the meane time cleare we here the latter negative one, that out of God, in no one, no not in all the creatures in one, is full, cer­tain, and ſufficient help: and that by theſe three Reaſons.

Firſt,Reaſ. 1becauſe all creatures are but inſtrumentall ſubſervient helps under God, in and for God, how, and how farre he plea­ſeth: who ſtoppeth, turneth, routeth, and overturneth them all at his pleaſure: therefore in them, out of him, is no ſafe repoſe for helpe; Lions, fire, water, winds, ſeas; yea, devils, and all the hoſtes of Creatures are wholly at his beck, who biddeth one goe, and he goeth; another ſtay, and he ſtayeth, as the Centurion ſaid to Chriſt, deſiring him thereupon to ſay the word only, and his ſervant ſhould be whole. We have plenty of Scriptures to ſhew this in particulars, and ſhall hereafter mention ſome of them.

The ſecond reaſon is, becauſe theſe inſtrumentall helps (ſuch as they be) are likewiſe but partiall and particular helps,Reaſ. 2ſome in one kind, ſome in another, none in all, no not all joyned in one ſufficient help in all troubles, though God bleſſe them with the12 utmoſt improvement of that naturall faculty, whereby he hath inabled them to act and work. In the firſt Creation, as well as in No­abs floud, the waters covered the ſurface of the whole earth, & ſhould perpetually do ſo, bu•…Gods〈◊〉,〈…〉〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉. be diſ­penſed there­with for the good of man.Fire heateth and drieth, but with­all it burneth and conſumeth, but that water moiſtneth and coo­leth: water moiſtneth and cooleth, but withall it ſinketh and drowneth, did not earth ſupport; earth ſupporting we ſhould be ſoon ſmothered without aire to breathe in: and it with all would make up but a vaſt dungeon, did not the heavens inlighten, by which, with their other influence, they make all the elements fruitfull and ſerviceable for the uſe of man. Hence had the Heathen ſo many gods, as they had ſeverall helpers, for that they knew not that they were one Gods arbitrarie inſtruments to doe his pleaſure, which Gods revealed will hath cleared unto us.

Obj. But here may be objected: I but God thus bleſſing each creature to act his part, they all joyntly can afford ſufficient help in all our wants and neceſſities?

Anſwer. As he that tryeth to pluck up a tree, if it ſettle after that ſhaking, it taketh faſter root, ſo will this ſecond reaſon be much firmer upon anſwer to this objection, that hath ſeemed to looſen it: which I ſhall render three-fold.

Firſt,Anſw. 1grant we what is ſuppoſed in the objection, yet were it more wiſe, ſafe, generous, and comfortable, to goe at once imme­diately to God, then ſeverally and ſcatteringly to the creatures for help; it is both the ſhorter cut, and the ſecurer way: eſpeci­ally being ſo graciouſly invited Pſal. •…ulcius ex ipſo ſonte, &c.50. 15. Call upon me in the day of trouble, I will deliver thee, and thou ſhalt hereby glorifie me. Who will ſcrape to a keeper for a piece of Veniſon, who may have free acceſſe to the maſter of the game to aske and have?

A ſecond anſwer is,Anſw. 2But ſo it is not, we recall what was gran­ted. For God reſerveth to himſelfe his Royall Power Paramount to underwrite his Fiat in all the workings of all his creatures, without which all is null and voide (ipſo facto) they will not, they dare not, they cannot doe it. God preſently withdrawes his bleſſing from the creature, when man neglecteth him, and re­ſteth on it. And the ground of equity herein is full of comfort: namely God doth all this in much grace and mercy unto man, that man in a conſtant free kind of familiarity may have recourſe unto himſelfe, who without theſe occaſions and invitations,13 would ſerve God as many graceleſſe children have ſerved their pa­rents, when they have put the ſtaffe wholly out of their own hands ſo that the child hath no farther hope to get any more from them, they ſlight them, and neglect all obſervance of them. As it was with the Prodigall ſonne in the Goſpel, who having recei­ved his portion from his Father, went into a farre country, and returned not untill he wanted bread to ſatisfie hunger; whereas on the contrary, neceſſity enforceth us, as the caſe now ſtandeth, to have daily recourſe to God, and ſo uſe bringeth onward to de­light therein. Hence our Saviour moſt wiſely teacheth us to pray, Give us this day our daily bread, to enforce upon us a daily duty, to crave from hand to mouth, if not rather from mouth (in prayer) to hand; and this is the true ground and reaſon of the duty of pray­er, and praiſing of God; not to enforme him of our wants, who knoweth them better then our ſelves; nor to quicken him to ſup­ply our wants, who is more ready to give, then we to aske, and preventeth us with requiſites uncraved; leaſt of all that he hath any need of, or advantage by our ſervice, to whom the whole creation can adde nothing, neither doth he want any thing; nor any the like reaſons; but meerly and purely in mercy and grace he will have us ſee our wants, know where is the ſpring-head for ſupply,1. Tim. 3. 4, 5. and to have recourſe thereto, to beget in us his Saints and ſervants a delight to converſe with him, as he dealt with Adam in Paradiſe, to ſtabliſh us in our new creation. The more is their ſin who neglect ſo great grace offered unto them.

Take the third and laſt anſwer to the objection,Anſw. 3namely againe that it is not ſo; becauſe (beſides what is ſaid) God reſerveth ſome choiceſt bleſſings for himſelf immediately to beſtow upon his children without the helpe of any creature, and beyond the courſe of nature; namely election, redemption, juſtification, ſan­ctification and glorification, with all ſpirituall gifts; wherein if we ſhall runne to any creature (though but as meanes) for aide, even glorified Saint or Angel, or to our owne merits (ipſo facto) we make all void, and doe out our ſelves of Gods grace, Pſal. 73. 24, 25, 26. Whom have I in Heaven but thee, and none in earth that I deſire beſides thee Thou art my portion; which truth doth utterly rout the Papiſts in their doctrine of merit; of invocation of Saint or Angel whatſoever.

14And if any ſhall here farther object, that God uſeth his mi­niſtry and ordinances as meanes in this behalfe. To this we an­ſwer: Firſt not colourably ſo in matter of Election and glorifica­tion: no nor of Redemption, wherin Chriſt alone is intereſted, God bleſſed for ever. Secondly, I ſay in the reſt, theſe meanes are not naturall within the compaſſe of the creation, but ſuper­naturall, immediately from God, from heaven ſent for thoſe ends, as are thoſe ends themſelves. Thirdly, ſuch as they are theſe meanes do wholy worke ſupernaturally and arbitrarily, not na­turally and neceſſarily; only when, where, how, and how free God pleaſeth: yea and when ſo, it is not in vertue of any infuſed inherent quality in them: but immediately from God, by the concurrence of his grace, in our uſe of his means preſcri­bed, in obedience of faith unto him. Fier burneth, and water wetteth by vertue of inherent qualities from God, therefore they do ſo burne and wet all alike, who are at alike diſtance and alike diſpoſed; but the Miniſterie converteth one when not 99. at one time, when not at twenty other times, by one mans miniſterie, when not by others, without any difference, yea often with diſadvantage on the creatures part, only by the gra­cious pleaſure of our good God, as is aforeſaid, 1 Cor. 2. 3. I was with you in weakeneſſe and much feare,〈…〉Chapters. Cathedra•…. ver. 4. And my prea­ching was not with entiſing words of mans wiſedome, but in demon­ſtration of the spirit and power (namely of the ſame ſpirit, per­fected in my weakeneſſe) ver. 5. That your faith ſhould not ſtand in the wiſdome of men, but in the power of God. Chap. 1. 23. We preach alike to all, but ver. 26. Yee ſee your calling, that not many wiſe, mighty, noble, ver. 27. but the fooliſh and weake things of the world to confound the wiſe and mighty, ver. 31. that he that glo­rieth ſhould glorie (ver. 29. onely) in the Lord, Rom. 9. 15. I will have mercie on whom I will have mercie, ver. 16. It is not in him that willeth, nor in him that runneth, but in God that ſheweth mercie, ver. 18. yea and whom he will he hardeneth. Act. 16. 13. We ſpake to the women reſorting thither, ver. 16. And a certaine wo­man (named and deſcribed there, as one of a hundred and worth a hundred uncertaine ones) heard us (indeed, but) her heart the Lord opened, &c.

15Finally, form ore evidence hereof, God often infuſeth grace without any meanes, as in thoſe ſanctified in and from the wombe. Iohn Baptiſt and the reſt; yea above and contrarie to meanes, as in the theefe converted on the croſſe, who might have argued probably with others, He that ſaveth not himſelfe, how ſhall he ſave me? Act. 〈…〉&c. See v. 15, 16.And in perſecuting Saul, who in heate of purſuit of the Saints was himſelfe made a chiefe one, a choice one; yea God hath wrought many miracles, even in naturall and civill affaires of men above and contrary to naturall principles, to convince his ſoveraignty, that we may goe to and reſt wholy on him, and not on the creature.

So much (I hope not too much) to ſettle the ſecond reaſon againſt objections. Reaſon 3The third and laſt reaſon of the clearing of the doctrine followeth: namely (as the creature is only Gods inſtrument, the firſt reaſon: and but a partiall and particular helpe, the ſecond reaſon) ſo at the beſt as a creature, it is full of vanitie, emptineſſe and deceit, and will faile us moſt, when we moſt relie upon it, and therefore the Scripture frequently phra­ſeth, that it is a lie, and feedeth with lies thoſe who flie unto it, Iſa. 28. 15. We have made lyes our refuge, and have hid our ſelves under falſhood, ver. 17. The haile ſhall ſweepe away the refuge of lies, Jer. 16. 19. O Lord my ſtrength, my for treſſe, my refuge in the day of affliction, ſurely our Fathers have inherited lies,The Antiheſie is betweene God and all things〈◊〉. vanity and things wherein there is no profit. Briefly demonſtrate we this thus. Either the creature is a meere naturall agent, without free choice; and this proveth a lie to us not by any venome of malice in it, but by Gods blaſting and curſing it to us, for our truſting to it. Thus he maketh the earth as iron, and heaven as braſſe unto us, &c. Or ſecondly, if the creature be a voluntary agent (as are men and angels) then it often proveth a lie to us in ran­cour of malice and perfidiouſneſſe, as doe wicked men and di­vels: the devill generally at laſt payeth home in their owne coyne to witches, his moſt faithfull ſervants, that ſhame in the world which he oweth them. And witches themſelves uſually bewitch them or theirs at laſt, through ſome checke they take who did moſt feare and humour them, having no power over them who moſt neglect and defie them. Or thirdly, if good16 men, they prove a lie to us through weakneſſe, undertaking a­bove their ſtrength, through, heedleſneſſe, forgetfulneſſe, or o­ther weakneſſes, fruſtrating their good intentions, being firſt themſelves deceived,This particular I forgot in my Sermon, ſo evi­dencing mans weakneſſe tho­rough my for­getfulneſſe. and ſo deceiving others. And this (be­loved) is the moſt candid interpretation that we can put upon very many of our preſent State affaires: we hope their failings are from humane frailtie, not from devilliſh malice and trea­cherie; yet with all I ſay: our charity herein will helpe us, not them who offend of malicious wickedneſſe. God will find them out and call them to account, and as he mocketh not, ſo will he not be mocked. The Lord give us all an awfull dread of him in what he betruſteth us withall in this particular. Laſtly, even good Angels proove a lie unto us, not by any malice or weakneſſe in them, but by our caſting and forcing our hopes on them, promiſing our ſelves more from them then they doe, dare or can promiſe to, or undertake for us. Though indeed proper­ly in this caſe (as in moſt of the others) we rather proove a lie unto our ſelves, forcing our ſlight to the creatures, which they would not have us to doe. And herein are the Papiſts againe mi­ſerably foiled in their adoration and invocation of Saints and An­gels glorified,Revel. 19. 10. & Chap. 22. 9. which they doe deteſt; witneſſe that of Iohn, who falling at the Angels feet to worſhip him, he ſaid, See thou doe it not, I am thy fellow-ſervant, worſhip God. And the Scripture a­boundantly chargeth us, that we doe not, and for that we doe truſt to our owne wits, wiſdome, wils, wealth, ſtrength, favour of Princes, multitude of people or whatever creature; even our inherent holineſſe, for that this alſo is a creature, not only when with the Papiſts placed in ſuperſtitious will-worſhip, but when in the truly holy works of the morall law, moſt religiouſly in faith performed. Thus have you the demonſtration of our ſecond doctrine; the whole creature is vanitie and a lie to truſt in: Therefore it is the Saints wiſdome to flie unto and relie upon God only in all their troubles. Improve we it by Uſe.

As firſt Reproofe of all bare negative not truſting in God,Ʋſe 1though we ſhould not fixe our truſt elſewhere, yet even this a­lone queſtioneth (or rather denieth) Gods all wiſe, juſt, good and powerfull providence, which if we did truly believe, we17 would certainly truſt in him. What greater diſparagement to men in place, then to diſtruſt, or not to truſt them (I now ſpeak of a civill truſt due to men in and for God, raiſed up by God, as meanes under him, which is lawfull, if it doe not out, nor over­top, but is ſub-ſervient unto our truſt in God) though they may faile in ability, in fidelity, through infirmity, death may fruſtrate all, yet what a ſowre upbraiding will theſe belch forth, as ſtomac­king the matter: what will you not truſt me? How can we an­ſwer God, or how dare we ever come to him againe having once thus ill uſed him? Pſal. 25. 2. I truſt in God, let me not be aſhamed; the onely way not to be aſhamed ever to look God again in the face; and that God ſhame thee not in giving thee into the hands of thy enemies, as there followeth: See more ver. 20. And yet the common bane of theſe times is, that we will truſt God no farther then we ſee him. What doe we call that man concer­ning whom we ſo expreſſe our ſelves? Yet ſo we deale with our God. Hence it is, that men turn from ſide to ſide, and alter counſels, votes, company, and what not upon each diſaſter in battell, or upon other ſecondary cauſes failing, we quite forſake our colours, namely all the Proteſtations and Covenants, which we colourably tooke up.

But then ſecondly,Ʋſe 2much more are thoſe to be reproved, who even when, and wherein they will not truſt God, they will any thing elſe without or above him. Wherein happily you will aske; but doth any one ſo? To whom I anſwer; that it is ſo hard a taske to fleſh and blood, that there is hardly any man that doth not ſo, more or leſſe. Which is uſually done two wayes 1. As we are ſo ſwayed by ſenſe that we are all for the preſent, counting one bird in the hand more worth then two in the buſh, though it be that buſh of Moſes, which burned, and was not conſumed,Exod. 3. 2, 3. Deut. 33. 16. and all thorough the good will of him that dwelt in that buſh, which turned afterward to a forme of prayer; that is, though we have Gods aſſurance that for all our thorny perplexi­ties wherein we are involved, and ſtick for the preſent, as did that Ramme which Abraham offered up, Gods wiſe and gracious pro­vidence will at length entricate us out of them, and ſet us at li­berty, they ſhall not conſume us, yet we faint, and call out, Oh18 that we might once ſee and find it. In this regard even ſuch as like well enough of reformation both in Church and State, and were pretty well perſwaded,Modo quolibet, modo rem. that God was about that worke, yet finding the many great difficulties and remoraes which clogge the buſineſſe, are now content to take up with any reaſonable (rather unreaſonable) accommodations for peace, even with im­patience to heare of the contrary, meerly becauſe they dare not truſt God with a thorough reformation, and the perfecting his worke ſo happily begun, and miraculouſly thus farre carried on­ward in deſpight of all difficulties, and the powers of hell ban­ding themſelves againſt it. A ſecond way of diſtruſt of God and truſting to the creature,Tantumuppo­nimus〈◊〉nihil ponmus deeo. is, that we ſuppoſe all, but expreſſe nothing of our repoſe in God, which weareth and wearieth out our me­mory, eſteeme and honour of God; and on the contrary we think, talke, yea and dote wholly of the worth of our Councellours and ſtrength of forces, and the like, Jam. 4. 13. Ye that ſay we will doe thus and thus, ver. 15. for that ye ought to ſay, if the Lord will. I, we ſuppoſe that. I but you muſt rather ſay that then the other: that is, have God actually in your thoughts and tongues, to ſettle your faith and truſt in him, ver. 16. But now yee rejoyce in your boaſtings: all ſuch rejoycing is not good: not good? Speake out, it is ſtarke nought, its flat atheiſme, and plaine idolizing the creature; there­fore God will remove from us theſe our idols, if he intend good unto us, as he hath ſome of our prime Councellours and Com­manders, and often infatuated and diſſipated the endeavours of the ſurvivers, to teach us to truſt in him the living Lord, who ne­ver faileth thoſe that truſt in him.

A third and laſt Uſe is Exhortation,Ʋſe 3therefore to hope in and flie wholly to God in all our troubles. Take along here that Text to enforce it, Lam. 3. 24. The Lord is my portion, ſaith my ſoule, therefore will I hope in him, ver. 25. The Lord is good to them that wait for him, that ſeeke him, ver. 26. It is good that we ſhould hope and quietly wait for the ſalvation of the Lord. I ſhall drive on this ex­hortation by propounding foure Rules, which may ſerve both as meanes directing us ſo to doe, and as marks of tryall whither we ſo doe,Rule 1both directive and detective. 1. Get a right knowledge19 and eſteeme of God in all his attributes of power, wiſdome, truth, goodneſſe, mercy and providence, firſt out of his word, then from thy experimentall obſervation, and if thou haſt not yet attai­red this latter, truſt him on his bare word, which ſo honoreth God that he will make is good to thee ſooner or later in thine experi­ence. Pſ. 9. 10. They that know thy name (that is theſe thy attributes) will put their truſt in thee, for thou Lord haſt not forſaken them that ſeeke thee. 2. Hence learne to truſt God freely and fully, nothing without, nothing above, nothing but him, without any diſtruſt of him,Pſ. 44. 6, 7, 8. notable to our purpoſe. or ſeeking to any other, Prov. 3. 5. Truſt to the Lord with all thy heart, and leane not to thine owne underſtanding. 3. Truſt in God conſtantly, at all times, in all difficulties and improbabili­ties, in thy greateſt extremities, in thy greateſt ſecurities: in all conditions, be thy eſtate never ſo good, that thou haſt all that, which worldings truſt in, yet not then therein, but in God: or be it never ſo bad, that thou haſt nothing, which worldings ſtay themſelves upon, yet even then in him ſecurely. Happy is he that hath a moſt even ſpun hope in all paſſges and occurrences what­ſoever. Scaliger tels us, that the leaſt thread, that is ſpunne, if it were ſpun with an abſolute perfect evenneſſe, it would hold up hanged in it the weight of caſtles, yea of mountaines, and he gi­veth a very ſubtill reaſon for it, for if it brake in one place rather then the reſt, then it argues that place weaker then the reſt, and to breake in one inſtant throughout every parcell thereof, were plainly to annihilate it, therefore it would not breake at all: how­ever this be one of his ſubtilties, I am ſure that a compleate even­ſpun hope, and truſt in God would beare us up againſt the moſt mountainous troubles that can befall us, whereas for want hereof we build caſtles in the aire, by creating new troubles to our ſelves in our diſtracting feares and jealouſies. Pſ. 62. 5, 6, 7, 8. a remarkable text.4. Truſt in God perpetu­ally, unto and in death it ſelfe; this is proper to the beleever, who hath hope in death, when as all the worldlings hopes doe periſh. This made the bloud of the Martyrs ſuch ſeed to the Church,Sanguis mar­tyrum ſemen ec­cleſiae. that whilſt that they, who obeyed not the word, were wonne with­out the word, vvhilſt they beheld the Martyrs reſolution, coupled with feare of God, and ſo devoid of feare of death, this convinced them of a more glorious eſtate after death, and did diſpoſe them20 to inſtruction, and ſo occaſioned their ſaving converſion, in the interim they reſt in perfect bliſſe, free from ſinne and ſorrow, ex­pecting a glorious reſurrection, and in this regard alſo likened in Scripture to ſeed, 1 Cor. 15. Iſa. 26. 4. Truſt in the Lord Jehovah for ever, for in him is everlaſting ſtrength, Job 13. 15. Though he kill me yet will I truſt in him.

Let this ſuffice for the ſecond Propoſition;Propoſition 3and ſo paſſe we un­to the third and laſt: The Doctrine is, That it is the comfort of Gods Church and children (ſo trusting in him) that they ſhall find God a very (yea too too) preſent strong and aboundant helpe in all their troubles whatſoever. The proofe and improvement whereof hath in part bin made good in the ſecond point, in recompence whereof this third will doe as much for the ſecond point, this be­ing the prime demonſtrative argument for it, as we then ſhewed, ſo nigh of kin are theſe two. The clearing of this point by Scrip­ture proofe is (as the former) referred to thoſe generall premi­ſed texts. For farther clearing hereof I ſhall firſt gather up the graduall arguments in our text thus. 1. God is our hope, re­fuge and ſhelter, that is, our hope makes us ſly to him for ſhelter. I ſo doe many, and find ſmall comfort, miſerable comforters, as Iob found his three friends, weake props. As ſome in a ſtorme ha­ſten to a tree, which ſo pelteth them with droppings, that they leave it and rather expoſe themſelves to the weather. Therfore ſecondly, our text addeth, And ſtrength; that is, alſufficient to protect them, who make him their ſhelter. I ſo are many men more able, then willing to help, as Dives was to relieve Lazarus? 3. Therefore our Text addeth, a helpe we ſhall finde him ready and willing. I happily in ſome few ſmall troubles without much coſt or trouble? Laſtly, therefore our Text ſaith, in very great and aboundant troubles, though we find them too too great and aboun­dant, yet will he beare us through, and out of them all. So that nothing is deſirable in this point, in which our Text holdeth not forth comfort.

It were eaſie from Scripture to ſhew you experiments in all particulars, which your own obſervation may ſupply, both in temporall and ſpirituall troubles, as our firſt point branched them forth: but I chooſe rather to remoove a cavill, which maketh21 battery againſt this truth, the removall whereof will much ſet­tle the ſame. Thus,

Obj. Experience telleth us (whatever you ſay) that the god­ly aer overborne with troubles, and ſinke and periſh under them. I ſhall give you a ſeven fold anſwer hereto.

Anſw. 1. Know that this third doth not enterfeer vvith the firſt Propoſition, That the troubles that befall in this life are common to godly and wicked men, and that the godly may die under the preſ­ſures thereof, death being the period and cloſure of this life, Mat. 10. 17. Chriſt forewarneth, thereby to fore-arme us herein. And then again know that the firſt doth not trip up the heels of this third Propoſition, but that nevertheleſſe God is our help in and out of them all. Anſw. 2A ſecond anſwer is, that to uphold the harmo­ny of theſe tvvo truths, and to contain each of them vvithin its bounds, we muſt give a double diſtinction: the former betweene temporall troubles reſpecting our naturall life; and ſpirituall troubles reſpecting our ſupernaturall life: the latter diſtin­ction is between the matter, and the manner of both theſe kind of troubles. The matter is the kind of troubles which we ſuffer; as ſickneſſe, hunger, thirſt, nakedneſſe, death, Satans tenta­tions, &c. the manner is Gods reſpect unto man troubled, and mans reſpect back again to God, both for ground and end why, and degrees how fare God orders that they be ſo troubled. According to which diſtinctions we ſettle the point in a four fold concluſion.

Firſt,Concluſ. 1that however temporall troubles are for matter alike both to Godly and wicked, yet for manner they are ſanctified to the Godly, and not to the wicked. The Godly own God the Au­thour thereof: juſtifie Gods Providence therein, arme them­ſelves to beare them as a Fathers chaſtiſements; weane them­ſelves from the love of this world, that is full of them; hate, and mortifie ſin as the cauſe of them; labour for holineſſe, as that which deſtroyeth ſin, and fitteth them for diſſolution, and for a better life, with longing deſire they wait and look for the ſame; And all this makes them more and more to hope in, and fly to God for helpe, and from hence they learne with David to ſay, Pſal. 119. 67. Before I was afflicted, I went astray: but now have I kept thy Word. ver. 75. Thy judgements are right: thou of very faith­fulneſſe haſt cauſed me to be troubled. In all which temporall22 troubles the delivery is conditionall, not abſolute, namely, when, how, and how farre Gods wiſedome ſeeth beſt for his glory, and his Childrens good.

A ſecond Concluſion is, that the ſpirituall trouble of ſin how­ever it ſeeme alike in godly and wicked for matter, yet for man­ner it differeth very much. The Godly ſin of infirmity, not of preſumption, their ſins are ſudden ſurpriſals and incroachments, not contrived before: bewailed, not boaſted in afterward: yea, and with conflict in the acting them; they are captived to them, not willingly ſerving them; they be not raigning ſinnes in them, and therefore not unto death. In all which it is generally quite contrary with the wicked, and that becauſe theſe are all fleſh, and ſo ſinne findeth no oppoſition in them: thoſe conſiſt of fleſh, and Spirit,Gal. 5. 17. which (as contraries) are in continuall combate. Hence the Godly cannot totally, or finally ſinke under ſin, becauſe the Spirit cannot be ſubdued to, and conquered by the fleſh, 1 Joh. 4. 4. Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: becauſe greater is he that is in you, then he that is in the world.

A third Concluſion is, that for diſtreſſe of Conſcience leading to deſpaire, however God ſuffer his children to be ſhrewdly buf­fetted by Satan for triall and chaſtiſement, yet in as much as de­ſpaire is a grievous ſinne, it cannot totally or finally prevaile over them, but they ſhall recover, and Gods grace ſhall be ſufficient for them.

The fourth and laſt Concluſion is, that however it be with the Godly in this life, yet the end crowneth all, as Paul ſpeaketh 2 Tim. 4. 7. I have fought a good ſight ver. 8. henceforth is layed up for me a crowne of righteouſneſſe, and not to me only, but to thoſe alſo that love his appearing, which cauſeth that his triumphant challenge Rom. 8. 33, 34, 35. In all which the wickeds condition is quite contrary: they ſinke without helpe everlaſtingly under all theſe troubles.

But here may ſome object,Object. as John 11. 37. Could not he that ope­ned the eyes of the blind, have cauſed that this man ſhould not have dyed? So could not God without more adoe have prevented mans fall into ſin and miſery, and ſo Chriſts death? or at leaſt by his death have perfectly freed his children from all ſin and miſe­ry, the two troublers of his Iſrael?

23I ſhould have cut ſhort this curious queſtion with Pauls an­ſwer. Anſwer. O man, who art thou that diſputeſt with God? but that a fuller ſatisfactory anſwer will afford choice heavenly notions: Therefore, I ſay, doubtleſſe his power could, if his wiſdome had ſeen it meet ſo to have ordered it: which however we cannot fathome to its bottome;Concluſ. 5yet five fathoms deepe we may dive.

Firſt, God is of abſolute infinite Perfection from all eternity, needing no creation, nor creature to adde any thing to him.

Secondly, therefore the whole creation was meerly arbitrary, yet with ſome end ſuitable to his excellency, and worthy his un­dertakings. For ſo every wiſe man will have a valuable end in his actions, much more will Gods infinite wiſdome ſo order it.

Thirdly, therefore this Gods end can be no other, but the ma­nifeſtation of his glory in all his communicative Attributes of Power, Wiſdome, Providence, and the reſt; and that to the high­eſt Perfection that the moſt noble Creatures, Men, and Angels can reach; whereby to honour, and praiſe him in all his excellen­cies: becauſe any thing in the creature is too baſe to be the ultimate and higheſt end of the Creators actions: and to adde any thing to himſelfe is impoſſible. Therefore it being nothing within God, nor within the creature, it remaineth onely to be this relative reſpect between them, in Gods manifeſtation of his glory, and the creatures magnifying him therein.

Fourthly, yet this Gods manifeſtation of his glory muſt not be in ſo eaſie and obvious a way, that the ſhallow capacitie of the choiſeſt creatures may trace him, much leſſe out-runne and way­lay him, ſaying, This way he muſt needs come, but in ſuch hid­den pathes, as are paſt any, yea, all the creatures finding out, un­till he be pleaſed to manifeſt them. Becauſe eaſineſſe and com­monneſſe ſtrippeth things of admiration, expoſing them to neg­lect, and contempt.

Fifthly, therefore God, to confound the wiſdome of the wiſe, propoundeth ſuch contrary, and unlikely meanes to produce his ends, that by how much the more we think the work impoſſible before hand, by ſo much the more admirable we may eſteeme it afterward: by how much the more we ſlighted it before, by ſo much the more we might adore it afterward. In theſe five Con­cluſions ſtands a generall rationall account of Gods actions. In24 particular all his works of wonder, and miracles we doe own to ſpeake ſo much unto us; as his leading Iſrael 40 yeares through the wilderneſſe, Exod. 12. 37, 38. Pſal. 78. 12. &c. and Chriſt his miraculous feeding ſo many with ſo few loaves. Joh. 6 5. Matth. 15. 32. And are not Gods ordinary works of nature as admirable? From one of which a Heathen Philoſopher concluded, without the light of Scripture, that doubtleſſe there is one God, whoſe univerſall all powerfull providence ordereth all things. To this effect he reaſoned concerning the conception of a child in the wombe: who diſtributeth that little maſſe of ſeed into fleſh, skin and bone, rather then all into ſleſh only? or being thus changed, who cauſed it to branch forth into head and members, wiith all their diſtinctions, rather then to congeale into a lump of bone inwrapped in fleſh, and covered over with skinne? or yet why two armes, and legges, and but one body? who branched forth the hands into five fingers with all their uſefull joynts? who diſtributed the intrals, and gave life to all, with the faculty of concoction, and growth, all in a due porportion, with a multi­tude of ſuch like obſervations? All which are ſo farre from the parents power to diſpoſe of, that they are often wholly ignorant thereof, untill at hand to bring forth, however, they cannot chooſe to have male or female; proper, faire, witty children, or other; the like of Egges turned into Chickens, Acrons into Oakes: with ſuch a certain rule, that doubtleſſe they are from one over-ruling power of God. David ſweetly meditateth this thing of his own conception, Pſal. 139. 13. to the 16. yet theſe, and the like, be­cauſe they fall out in an ordinary courſe of nature, foreſeene in their cauſes and meanes, are not admired, yea, little conſidered, as is each leaſt miracle: ſo true is it, that Familiarity breedeth con­tempt: whereas it is as rare a worke of God to turne water in­to wine by the ordinary courſe of nature, were it truly conſide­red, as by Chriſt his miracle: Oh, its the nature of the Vine to doe it! I but who gave it this nature and vertue? Oh, but it's common and ordinary: ſo much the more admirable provi­dence, that for ſo long continuance never fainteth, nor faileth in his work: what is carried with conſtancy and certainty is moſt with wiſdome and with power. I might be large herein, but I contract, and reduce all to the ſatisfying our preſent objection. 25Its true: God could, if he would, have prevented mans fall, Chriſts death, his childrens ſinne and ſuffering: but then, 1. We had not ſeen the weakneſſe of the choiſeſt creatures, men, and Angels, when not ſupported by God. 2. Nor Gods rich love in Chriſt given a ranſome for us; nor Gods ſevere indignation againſt ſin, and ſinners, with the higheſt pitch of Gods exact juſtice againſt reprobates, and of his unfathomed free grace towards his elect ones, and of his unblemiſhed holineſſe, that ſpareth not ſinne, but muſt have it puniſhed, though in his children, by way of chaſtiſe­ment, and in his Sonne by way of ſatisfaction; nor the power of the grace of God in his Saints, that is ſtronger then death, and ſo exerciſeth them in all the toſſings and turnings of this life, that all things co-work in the cloſe with beſt advantage for Gods glory, and their eternall Salvation; that with admiration looking into theſe pathes of God, we may ſay with Paul, Rom 11. 33. O the depth of the riches both of the wiſdome and knowledge of God! how unſearchable are his judgements, and his wayes paſt finding out? ver. 34. 35. For who hath knowne the mind of the Lord, &c. ver. 36. For of him, and through him, and to him are all things: to him be glo­ry for ever. Amen. This is the end of all, Gods glory, that man cannot trace his pathes. He bringeth good out of evill, which could not be, had he not firſt permitted evill to be. Theſe are Pauls miraculous Riddles and Paradoxes, 2 Cor. 6. 4. to the 10. v. with which the Spirit of God by faith acquainteth his children, which the naturall man diſcerneth not, neither can he. Nothing ſo confoundeth Satan with all his Aſſaſſinates, foiling him at his owne weapon, letting him have his moſt malicious will, and thereby accompliſhing his owne moſt holy will. As that Jo­ſephs brethren ſhould ſell him into Egypt, that they might not worſhip him, whom thus they came to worſhip; That Sampſon ſhould be bound by the Philiſtines, to deprive him of his ſtrength, thereby to exerciſe and evidence his ſtrength to their ruine; That David ſhould kill Goliah with his ſling, and ſmooth ſtones out of the brooke, and ſo cut of Goliahs head with his own ſword. All ſeverall types of Satan bringing Chriſt to death, ſo working mans ſalvation, and his own kingdoms deſolation, the things Sa­tan ſo feared, and hereby thought to prevent, Pſal. 76. 10. Surely the wrath of man (and devils) ſhall praiſe thee, and the remainder of26 wrath ſhalt thou refraine, that is, when God hath let as much ma­lice runne forth, as will make moſt for his glory, God will turne the cock, and damme up the reſidue, when at the fierceſt; then is his fit time: and that is as ver. 9. When God ariſeth to judgement, to ſave all the meeke of the earth. Let this ſuffice for clearing of this laſt doctrine.

The firſt Uſe whereof is Inſtruction of the ſeverall waies that God hath for delivery of the godly from all their troubles:Ʋſe 1wher­of he hath given us evidence (beſides his reſerves, even his owne waies, in his own wiſe providence, to his own glory, beyond mans tracing, according to what we laſt delivered in this Do­ctrine) as followeth.

1. God often ſmiteth the hearts of the enemies of his Church and children with ſudden fears and jealouſies of dangers to them­ſelves, when no cauſe is thereof that is reall: ſo that they fly when none purſueth them. As did the hoſts of the Aſſyrians, 2 King 7. 6, 7. whom the Lord cauſed to heare a noiſe of chari­ots and horſes, and of a great hoſte, and ſo were utterly routed. Yea Stories mention the like in ordinary, through miſtake of trees and Sun-ſhine upon waters, and cattell for armies; of rat­ling winds, yea dreames ſtriking horrour and amazement, as a no­table example of the Midianites dreame with the following ſtratagem, Iudg. 7. 13. doth evidence.

2. God often ſmiteth the enemies hearts with relenting pity, and maketh them prove friends to his Church and children. So he over wrought Iudah and Reuben towards Ioſeph. Gen. 37. 19. to ſpare his life. So Ahaſhueroſh towards Hester, and the whole Nation of the Iewes to reverſe the ſentence gone forth for their deſtruction, Esth. 7. So Nebuchadnezzars heart was ſet before hand to free Daniel (in his meaſure) as well as after to joy in it, and in the interim to be troubled for him, Dan. 6. Theſe twain are Gods preventing wayes of help.

3. God often ſuffereth his Churches and childrens enemies to ride on proſperouſly in their projects, yet ſo, as in the upſhot to confound them, and to turne their deſignes to his owne glory, the welfare of his Church and children, and their owne ſhame and confuſion; as in the inſtances of Ioſephs brethren, who ſold him into Aegypt, the Philiſtines binding Sampſon, and the be­traying27 Chriſt unto death. Alſo in Saul his giving Michal to David to wife to be a ſnare unto him in the dowry of a hundred Philiſtines fore-skins, that ſo David might fall under their hands, which was his riſe to greater honour, 1 Sam. 18. 22, &c. The like in the accuſers of the three children, Dan. 3. and of Daniel himſelf, chap. 6. both which tended to the riſe of them and ruine of their adverſaries.

4. God often letteth the principals alone, and only dealeth with the inſtruments of their cruelty, diſabling them for ſervice againſt his Church and children, as the fiery fornance and the Li­ons in the two fore-named examples. So the chariot wheeles of Pharaoh's hoſte fell off in purſuit of Iſrael through the red Sea, Exod. 14. 25. So the band of ſouldiers, that came to attach Je­ſus, as ſoon as he ſaid, I am he, went backward and fell to the ground, Ioh. 18. 5, 6. And Eccleſiaſticall Story telleth us, that Iohn being put into a Caldron of boyling leade, came forth without a­ny hurt.

5. God often ſuffereth the devill and all his inſtruments to do their worſt, and then he doth his beſt; ſetting himſelfe in batta­lia, his hoſt againſt theirs, under whoſe command are all crea­tures, like ſo many regiments: Some ſo potent, that one Angel in one night ſlaieth 185000 enemies of his Church, 2 King. 19. 35. The ſtarrs in their courſes fought againſt Siſera, Judg. 5. 20. the Sunne and Moone ſtand ſtill to give light to his people to be a­venged of their enemies, Ioſh. 10. 12, 13. Yea the river Kiſhon ſwept them away, Iudg. 5. 21. Yea God hath hoſts of lice, flies, fleas, frogs, haile, murten, and what not, to puniſh kings for their ſakes.

6. God often ſuffereth the wicked to prevaile even unto mar­tyrdome againſt his Church and Saints: but it is to free them from evils to come; to give them a more honourable crown of glory; and to raiſe up ſeed to his Church out of their blood, as hath formerly been touched. Now (beloved) all theſe things are written for our inſtruction: for how ever we expect not the like miraculous deliverances, as moſt of theſe were; yet wee through patience and comfort of the Scriptures muſt have this hope, that the Lord will find out a fit way for us alſo to eſcape, and will give a good iſſue with the temptation, when, how, and28 how farre his wiſe providence ſeeth beſt for his own glory and his childrens good, however delivering them from eternall death and giving to them life everlaſting. I need not recount unto you our own experiences of our Church of Englands wonder­full deliverances: that from the Spaniſh invaſion of eighty eight, and that of the helliſh powder-plot, with thoſe in theſe our late and preſent calamities, which we may name Gad, for loe a troope cometh; many deliverances already brought forth, and many more we truſt are yet in the wombe.

Gods children are men of obſervation, and thereout ſuck they no ſmall advantage to their ſoules; which ſhall uſher in a ſecond Uſe of Exhortation,Ʋſe 2that, we obſerve diligently Gods gracious dealings in this behalfe, both to his Church, and to thy ſelfe in particular, to learne thence to praiſe God, to pray to him, and to truſt in him. Herein (if in any thing) was David a man after Gods owne heart, who inditeth Songs of Gods providence in all his wondrous works of grace to his Church; both hiſtorically from the beginning of the world downe to his own times; and prophetically from his owne time unto the worlds end, yea and the former hiſtoricall ones with ſo propheticall a ſpirit, that they ſerve moſt aptly for future uſe unto all poſterity: and therefore his book of Pſalmes remaineth the only Church muſick unto the worlds end unto the Church of Chriſt.

A third Uſe is farther Exhortation,Ʋſe 3that we be moſt deeply and chiefly troubled for our ſinnes, the only true trouble-houſe of the Iſrael of God, untill we get pardon thereof in Chriſt his me­rits, and victory over them by the power of Gods Spirit. This will alleviate all other troubles to thee, as being flea-bites here­unto; they all will be eaſily overcome in joy of this once right­ly and throughly vanquiſhed: and our quietneſſe of Conſcience iſſuing hence will be rightly bottomed upon tenderneſſe of Con­ſcience bringing joy in the Holy Ghoſt, and not on that falſe bot­tome of naturall ſecurity, and ſenſeleſneſſe in ſinne, growing up in impudencie of ſinne, untill at length it quite flag into finall de­ſpaire; ſuch a ſeared Conſcience breakes forth at laſt into reſtleſſe wounds, and out-cryes of an accuſing conſcience. Get God home to thee within thy Conſcience, then needeth thy hope for ſhelter never ſtirre out of thee, but in all troubles whatſoever29 have this for thy retiring biding place; If thither thou dareſt not, whither wilt thou fly? how comfortleſſe is that mans conditi­on, who having no ſafety abroad, dareth not retire, having no quiet at home through a brawling wife, both at bed and board reſtleſſe? yea, worſe is the trouble that ſinne procureth, diſquieting the Conſcience: Such ones are like to the Citizens of Ai, purſued, and thinking to return to their City, it was all on fire, and ſo they fell all by the ſword. Joſh. 8. not much unlike was the condition of the Benjamites, Judg. 20. 40 &c. yet worſe, even as ill as may be, is the preſent condition, becauſe we carry this houſe, the retiring place of Conſcience about with us, where-ever we goe, and can­not leave it behinde us; and therefore take we heed how we diſ­quiet it with our ſins:Faber deaſciat lignain ſuper­ficie putrida, ſi auutem ſana in­venerit intue in aedificium pro­vehit, non valdae de ſuperficie pu­trida & laeſo ſolicitus: Quid proderit exteri­us ſanum putre­facta medulla conſcientiae? To which purpoſe let us be ſure to finde out and ſurprize our ſinnes before they find and ſurprize us, if we diſcover our ſinnes firſt, we may kill them; if they find us out firſt, they will greatly hazzard our ruine, if God ſhew us not the greater mercy. Let our ſinnes therefore be our greateſt trouble. Take Auſtins expreſſion. The Carpenter heweth timber, which is rotten on the outſide, but if he findeth it ſound within, he ſqua­reth it, fitting it for building, regardleſſe of the outward unſound chips, if they be burnt in the fire; it will nothing availe us to have ſound bodies, and hollow hearts with corrupted conſciences; theſe be the troubles which ſeize on us, that we ſink under them: Get a good heart and ſound conſcience, and in whatever trou­bles,Iſtae ſunt tri­bulationes quae invenerunt nos nimis. Si ſanum ſit intus, ubi­cunquealibi paſ­ſus ſit, illc con­fugiet, & ibi invenerit De­um, &c. thither thou mayeſt (with Hezekiah) retire, and appeale to God with comfort, who will there meet thee, ſpeaking peace, however troubles doe dog, and purſue thee from place to place: otherwiſe they will drive thee out of thy ſelfe, and make thee thine owne accuſer and tormentor, haunting thy ſelfe with per­petuall vexation in every place, and at every turne; and that ſo much the more fiercely, by how much the more inwardly and ſecretly: and yet even in theſe extremities God, yea, God alone is out refuge,Te ſequitur, tequecruciat tan­to ardentius, quanto interius: tamen & in his adjutor eſt Do­minus. Auguſt. and preſent help; wherfore find we out our ſins, and with the helpe of our God, rout we them, that they deſtroy not us utterly: and make we ſure to have our God at peace within us, thither to retire. When men ruſh out of a ſort againſt their enemies, and make good their ſort, they may retreat thither ſafe­ly in all ſtraights: but if the enemy breake in upon them by ſur­prize,30 or ſtep in between them and home, or pell mell crowd in with them, they may repent at leaſure (if God give them the grace, I meane in this our ſpirituall conflict with ſinne) wherfore as ſome have voluntarily bound themſelves to their good behavi­our, thereby to reteine their liberty, that their enemy binde them not thereto, for then it is very difficult to get looſe: ſo let out Chriſtian wiſdome teach us to doe. Though we are all borne in our ſinnes, yet take we heed how we live in our ſins, for then we ſhall dye in our ſins: the godly however ſinne is in them unto death, yet they are not in their ſinnes, but in Chriſt Jeſus, new creatures, continually mortifying all their ſinfull luſts: Oh let it be ſo with me, with thee, yea, and with thee alſo whoever thou art: as we tender the eternall ſalvation of our ſoules.

Take a fourth Uſe of Exhortation,Ʋſe 4that we build and reſt upon God alone for delivery in all our troubles. Iſai. 26. 3, 4. is a full text to this purpoſe. Let no carnall reaſonings ſtave or draw us off from this our repoſe in God: as that is a maine one: Ob­jecting that Cities,Object. Kingdomes, Republickes moſt flouriſhing have their periods, birth, growth, heigth, decay, and ruine; and none can hinder this fate and deſtiny, as hath been obſerved, and therefore why ſhould we ſtruggle in the buſineſſe?

Anſwer hereto is,Anſwer. that for as much as this doth generally take us off from our addreſſe to, and ſecuring our ſelves in Gods all­powerfull, wiſe, and good providence: Therefore

Firſt,Concluſ. 4Know we, that God in vertue of theſe his attributes diſ­poſeth of Kings and Kingdomes, bringing downe one, and ſet­ting up another, and doing whatever he pleaſeth both in Heaven and in earth.

Secondly, know we likewiſe that God is not fickle, nor hu­morous, lightly loathing old friends, nor changing his love: but ſpareth, and forbeareth, untill our ſins ſo highly provoke him, that the honour of all his glorious Attributes, Juſtice, Truth, Holineſſe are ſo deeply ingaged in the quarrell, that he cannot fairly come off, but by taking vengeance to the uttermoſt. In as much as even when the cry of Sodome came up to Heaven, he will firſt come downe to the earth, to ſee if their ſins were as great as their cry was loud: yea, and he ſpared the Canaanites, untill their ſins were full ripe for judgement. Judah's ſinnes grew to that height that31 there was no remedy. 2 Chron. 36. 16. Matth. 23. 32. Fill ye up the meaſure of your Fathers. Pſal. 107. 34. A fruitfull land he turneth into barrenneſſe, for the iniquity of them that dwell therein.

Thirdly, Know we farther that in all theſe Cataſtrophe's God ſtill preſerveth his Church (the City of God, the Kingdome of Chriſt) ſafe and ſound, though he remove this his Candleſticke from one people to another nation: God provideth for it amidſt all the ruines of Kingdomes: being no temporall, but a ſpirituall juriſdiction, ſee ver. 4, 5. after our Text. Thus all Judea and Pale­ſtina being layed waſte, the Church ſettles in Grecia; it being over-run, it removeth into theſe Weſterne, and Northern parts: and happily it may take its flight into America: certainly it will not be extinct untill the worlds end, nor then neither, but per­fected in Heaven.

Laſtly, know we that in all theſe removes God taketh ſpeciall care of his Jewels, his choſen ones (who are his true Church) ma­keth them up, removeth them charily, uſually into Heaven, for hazzard of looſing them in the rubbiſh and lumber through often removes. From what is ſayed, it followeth for full ſatisfaction of the objection. Therefore even temporall governments, much leſſe Chriſts Church, depend not upon fate, humane ſtrength, and policy, but immediately upon Gods moſt wiſe and juſt provi­dence, and gracious diſpoſe; and therefore let no ſuch vain con­ceit take us off from making God our God, ſo our hope, refuge, and ſhelter, in whom we ſhall thus find a very preſent great and aboundant help in never ſo preſent, great, and aboundant troubles, which we meet withall, Pſal 60. 9. ad 12. excellent to our pur­poſe is that text. I ſay, make we him ſo, as we uſually make great ones our friends; by applying our ſelves in giving him all full con­tent that poſſibly we can, and ſo our ſelves ſhall be all made for ever. Meanes 5In particular take theſe Rules, as meanes thereunto:

Firſt, breake we off all league with our ſins which are ſo offen­ſive to God, untill when there is no comming to God; he heareth not ſinners.

Secondly, hanker not after other helpers, rely on him only, fully, truſting him in the uſe of ſuch meanes, as he preſcribeth and af­fordeth. God is jealous, will have no corrivall, nor allow thee (in this caſe) two ſtrings to thy bow. He who worketh all in all32 muſt be unto thee all in all: Of, through, and to whom are all things, to him be all praiſe for ever. Rom. 11. 36.

Thirdly, to this end celebrate all his former great deliverances for his Church and choſen. Oh how David by ſongs of degrees pegged up his heart to an exact praiſing God this way.

Fourthly, let faith inferre from what God hath down to what he both can and will doe for the future: who is the ſame without change, if his wiſdome ſee cauſe, his goodneſſe will do it: hereby ſtrengthen thy faith, comfort thy ſpirit, take courage to endea­vour: ſo David argueth, God delivered me from the Lion, and the Beare,1 Sam. 17. 34, 35 2 Cor. 1. 10. therefore will he alſo from this uncircumciſed Philiſtine. So Paul. God hath delivered us, doth deliver us, in whom we truſt that he will deliver us.

Fifthly, be fervent, and frequent with God by prayer in all thy troubles; the more inſtant, the more and greater they be; and ſea­ſon them with briniſh teares of repentance for thy ſins, which provoke him to trouble us: This duty God ſo countenanceth, that Ahabs outſide humiliation ſhall have outward temporall ſalvatiō.

Laſtly,1 Kin. 21. 29. by faith, prayer, praiſe, repentance, and obedience, make God thy hope, refuge, and ſhelter, not only in, but alſo out of trou­bles, in the height of proſperity, if thou look for his help in the depth of adverſity; that ſo the duty may not be uncouth unto thee, nor thou to it, in time of need; that ſo alſo God may not ſeeme ſtrange, nor look ſtrange upon thee, when thou commeſt to him, but thou mayeſt have gained his care, and favour, and free recourſe to him in need; that ſo like wiſe thou maiſt rather prevent then remove troubles, which is the eaſier task: God will not preſcribe thee this Phyſick, if thou keep ſo conſtant a good diet; yea, thus ſmall diſtempers will ſweat forth by ſuch daily exerciſe, yea, and one or other greater diſtemper may be recovered by ſpeedie re­pentance, and God not proſcribe thee more bitter phyſicke. Finally, I ſay, diſcharge the duty, which this our Text preſcri­beth, and thou maiſt confidently inferre, as followeth, Thou nee­deſt not to feare, though the earth be removed, &c.

God Almighties Bleſſing goe herewith.


About this transcription

TextA sermon preached (before God, and from him) to the Honourable House of Commons. At a publike fast, Novemb. 27. in the yeare GoD Is oVr refVge, oVr strength; a heLpe In troVbLes VerIe aboVnDant VVe finDe. By George Gipps rector of Elston in Leicester-shire, one of the Assembly of Divines. Published by order of the said House.
AuthorGipps, George, d. 1654..
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SeriesEarly English books online.
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Bibliographic informationA sermon preached (before God, and from him) to the Honourable House of Commons. At a publike fast, Novemb. 27. in the yeare GoD Is oVr refVge, oVr strength; a heLpe In troVbLes VerIe aboVnDant VVe finDe. By George Gipps rector of Elston in Leicester-shire, one of the Assembly of Divines. Published by order of the said House. Gipps, George, d. 1654.. [4], 32 p. Printed for Christopher Meredith at the signe of the Crane in Pauls-Church-yard,London :1645[i.e. 1644]. ("GoD Is oVr refVge, .." is a chronogram for 1644.) (Running title reads: A sermon preached to the Honourable House of Commons on their monethly fast, Novem. 27. 1644.) (Annotation on Thomason copy: "the 5 in imprint date is crossed out and altered to 1644.) (Reproduction of the original in the British Library.)
  • Bible. -- O.T. -- Psalms XLVI, 1 -- Sermons.
  • Sermons, English -- 17th century.
  • Fast-day sermons -- 17th century.

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  • DLPS A86017
  • STC Wing G779
  • STC Thomason E23_3
  • STC ESTC R18994
  • EEBO-CITATION 99860529
  • PROQUEST 99860529
  • VID 112651

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