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Davids Tears for his Rebellious Son Abſalom, Iſraels Tears for Abners Fall by blou­dy Joab, Infants Tears for Athaliahs Treaſon, PREACHED By S. L. a true Lover of the Church, his King, and Country, in his Country-cure.

In Rhama was a voyce heard, mourning, and weeping, and great howling: Rachel weeping for her Children, and would not be comforted, becauſe they were not. Mat. 2. 28.
They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where to find him. John 28. 13.
Be ſure that your Sin will find you out. Numb. 32. 23.

LONDON, Printed by T. C. and L. P. for Robert Crofts, at the Crown in Chancery-lane, under Serjeants Inne. 1660.

To the Right Honourable WIL­LIAM Lord PETRE, Grace, Mercie, and Peace.


WHen the Ilienſes viſited Tiberius Caeſar ſomewhat out of ſeaſon to condole with him the death of Auguſtus, he ſmiling­ly anſwered, Et ego doleo Hectorē veſtrum, and I am ſorry for the loſs of your Hector: who was dead many years before. Even ſo, perhaps, it may be my portion, (if not by you, for your goodneſs ſake,) yet by ſome others out of malignity, and evil diſpoſition, to ſuf­fer a hard cenſure, if not a ſcornfull flout, with the Trojans, that I preſent to you, and the world, an Embrio of my brain, born out of due time, as the Apo­ſtle ſaid of himſelf, 1 Cor. 15. 8. But give me leave to anſwer for my ſelf, and that ſtinking vapour will eaſily be ſhaken off from the skirts of my gar­ments. For firſt, I did appear in ſeaſon, and offered to the Preſs ſome of them, within a few dayes after the fall of our good Joſiah: but was diſſwaded to the contrary, for ſome reaſons best known to my ſelf. Secondly, it is Gods promiſe, Prov. 10. 7. The name of the wic­ked ſhall rott; But the righteous ſhall be had in everlaſting remem­brance, Pſal. 112. 6. And that our good King may ever live, and live in the living pictures of himſelf, and in the hearts of his people, and never be forgotten (like May Magdalen) for the good ded ſhe had done, Mar 14. 9. I conceive it not unſeaſonable to ſpeak ſomething of his life and fall. Vivit poſt funera virtus. Thirdly, although it may be counted civil policie to be ſi­lent, yet my inward prompter tells me, it is uncivil duty, not to anoint the dead with the oyntment of my deareſt love and honour. Dum ſpiritus hos regit artus. To love the living, may be Pa­raſitical, as more, propter ſua, than ſe: but to love the dead, when they can do neither good, nor harm, is verus amor, true love indeed: and ſuch is mine, and ſo I am free from the aſperſi­on of ambitiouſneſs, covetouſneſs, and vain-glory. The firſt text speaks of an unnatural rebellion, and a civil, or rather uncivil War, raiſed by a child againſt his father, and King father. The ſecond of a deadly treachery and conſpiracy, to bring down to the ground a Prince, and a great man, whereof the World was not worthy, Heb. 11. 38. The third of a horrid treaſon, not only againſt the father, the King fa­ther, but even againſt his children, that as the Husbandmen ſpake one to another, Mark 12. 7. the Inheritance might be theirs. So that as Protoge­nes in his abſence, finding at his return a line drawn upon his board in his ſhop, with much exquiſiteneſs, preſently con­cluded Apelles had been there: Even ſo, by the monſtrous conception, birth, and carriage of all, or either of them, it may be imagined (without an Interpre­ter) who was the father of them, Jo. 8. 44. and he that ſet them on work, will, or hath paid them the wages of Balaam, 2. Pet. 2. 15. If you will be pleaſed to over-look with a Candid eye the following Treatiſes, you ſhall find the condition of the Church of God, to be as a Lillie among Thorns, Can. 2. 2. and her greateſt enemies to be of her own houſhold, as Chriſt fore-told, Mat. 10. 36. Gog and Magog, (like He­rod and Pilate) will combine againſt Christ, and his Members, to dethrone, and extirpate them; but ſuch is Gods over-ruling providence, that, Sanguis Martyrum, ſemen Eccleſiae, he pre­ſerves her from falling into aſhes, and after a black Cloud, and waterie tem­peſt, ſends forth the brighteſt, and clear­eſt beames of his favour, and never-dying love, to warm her, refreſh her, and make her laſt daies better than the firſt, like Jobs, 42. 12. Here again you ſhall find, with what a Goſpel-face, rebellion and treaſon are painted, able to deceive the very elect, Mark 13. 22. but being unmasked, how mort deformed, more ugly do they look than Pharaohs lean kine, when they had devoured the fat, the full, the fair, the well fleſhed of the Land? But leſt it be ſaid of me, as once a flout­ing Critick ſaid unto the Citizens of Mindus, who having great gates to a little Citie, he bade them to ſhut the gates, leſt the Citie run out: even ſo, leſt the bead ſeem bigger than the bo­dy, and the Proem larger than the O­ration, I ſhall only deſire, that God may be Glorified, your ſelf Contented, and confirmed in thoſe Principles which you have hitherto profeſſed with zeal and courage, I conclude,

Your humble Servant in Goſ­pel-work for Chriſt, T. L.

A SERMON PREACHED The next Sabbath after the fall of our good Ioſiah.

2 Sam. 3 38.And the King ſaid unto his Servants, Know ye not that there is a Prince, and a great man this day fallen in Iſrael?

THe Hiſtory makes mention of a ſtrong, long, and ſharp diſpute between the Houſe of Saul, and David, for precedency of ho­nor, for the Scepter, and Regal Throne: the Generaliſsimo on the one ſide was Abner, and on the other Joab, men of might, cou­rage2 and renown, like thoſe of old, Gen. 6. 4. who maintained their Arguments, not with ſmooth words, like Sophiſters in the Schools, but with rugged Blows, and point of ſwords: and therefore no wiſe man could expect, but the concluſion thereof would end, and be drawn up in bloud. For as it is written of thoſe two gallant Romans,

Non tulit Caeſar, Pompeiuſve Parem.

Caeſar and Pompey could never tollerate an equal, a Copartner, or Coſharer with them in earthly glory, no more than can Wedlock in the ſame Bed: Even ſo, theſe Worthies of Iſrael, and Judah, fomenting their ſtrife, and whetting on their anger (as the Lion is ſaid to beat himſelf with his tayl, to make him the more fierce on his prey:) ſometimes by publick ambition, that they might ſit neareſt to the Crown: ſometimes by Popular applauſe, that ſilly, ſimple, and weak Reed, or Spiders webb, that deceives all that truſt in it, Job 8. 14. and ſometimes for private ſiniſter ends of their own, (although far different,) they contrive and plot each others overthrow; and what the one cannot act by open force, he will effect by ſecret treaſon. Joabs diſ­content3 for the death of his Brother Aſha­hel, may not, muſt not, ſhall not be miti­gated, but by Abners fall, and Abners fall cannot be without Davids, without Iſraels tears: for David weeps, and Iſrael weeps, and weeps again, as it is verſ. 34. that as a man falleth before wicked men, ſo Abner ſhall fall. And the King ſaid unto his Ser­vants, Know ye not, that there is a Prince, and a great man this day fallen in Iſrael?

No man as yet, (no not the Son of God himſelf as man) be he never ſo potent and mighty, was privileged from death, or from taſting of Deaths cup, Pſal. 89. 48. for the decree is paſt, the doom is irreco­verable, decretum est omnibus mori, there is an appointed time for all men to dye, Heb. 9. 27. But to fall immaturely (like Fruit before it be ripe) but to be cropped like the Roſe in the bud; but to be nip­ped in the Spring, like the flower of the field; but to be chaſed up and down, like a Fox fleeing to the Mountains; but to be wearied and worried to death, (Acte­on-like) by his own Hounds, and gree­dy Currs, thirſting to fill themſelves full with the fleſh and blood of their loving Maſter; but to be cheated and gull'd of his4 life, and that after many Proteſtations, Vows, and lifting up of hands to the Al­mighty; but to be betrayed with a Kiſſe, as Judas ſerved his Lord; but to be ſtub­bed up root and branch in time of peace, and that under colour of a fair treaty and parley, as Joab did Abner, verſ. 26, 27. Hinc illae lachryme, Niobe herſelf will weep at this. This cannot but cauſe the moſt ſtony heart to melt, this cannot but cauſe all Iſrael to hang down their heads like Bull­ruſhes, and to wring their hands, and to water their couches with tears, Pſal. 6. 6. and this cannot but move Iſrael to curſe, with David, the Author and Authors of Iſraels woe, verſ. 29. that Abner, a Prince, a great man, ſhould fall, and thus fall, and in Iſrael too, where was the Law, and the Prophets, where the word was taught and preached; and where a reformation, a goodly reformation, a general reformati­on is pretended. But although (horret me­miniſſe) David is aſhamed, is ſtartled and trembles at ſo horrid, ſo cruel, ſo unnatu­ral a Fact, that he would not have it publi­ſhed in Gath, nor proclamed in Askalon, leſt the Heathen, the uncircumciſed, the Philiſtines, the Papiſts, the Jeſuites try­umph5 and rejoyce in Iſraels wonderfull, in­ſpeakable, invaluable loſſe, wherein the light of Iſrael is quenched as it is, 2 Sam. 22. 17. Yet he declareth and broacheth this ſad news, and heavy tidings to his Servants, that they might take notice what a rich Jewel was fallen from the Crown: ſaying, Know ye not, that a Prince, and a great man is this day fallen in Iſrael?

There is no innocent blood ſpilt and ſhed upon the ground, but hath a tongue to cry unto Heaven for vengeance. So ſaith God to Cain, Gen. 4. 10. The voice of tby bro­thers blood crieth to me from the Earth: and therefore that the Land might be found guiltleſſe of ſo foul crime, for,

Clamitat in Coelum vox ſanguinis, & Sodomo­rum,
Vox oppreſſorum, merces retenta laborum,

and ſo acquitted of the imminent, and emi­nent judgements following it, from the great Tribunal above, the Law requires the Coroner to ſit and make enquiry, after the death of the meaneſt Peaſant, (for ſaith the Statute in that caſe provided) the King hath loſt a Subject, and muſt have an account thereof. How much more then, when an Ab­ner,6 a Prince, a great man falles, ought whole Iſrael by the ſame bond of love, to ſtand uas one man, and require ſatisfacti­on for his death? that as it is, ver. 28. The Kingdom may be guiltleſſe before the Lord for ever, concerning the blood of Abner. David fore-ſees a black ſtorm comming, and ther­fore labours to make his peace with God and Men, laying open unto them, the man­ner, & nature of Abners fall, in theſe words, ver. 33. Died Abner as a fool dieth? and prayeth unto the Lord to reward the evil doer, according to his wickedneſſe, ver. 39. and (digito monstrat hominem) points out with his finger to the eyes of all the mour­ners in Iſrael, Joabs evil and wickedneſſe, like Cains brand-mark on his forehead, to be the ſhedding of bloud, innocent bloud, Princes bloud: for ſaith the King to his ſer­vants, Know ye not, that there is a Prince, and a great man, this day fallen in Iſrael?

Scelus aliquis tutum, nullus ſecurum tulit, ſaith Seneca, a man may commit theft, rape, murther, &c. ſo ſecretly, that neither the Sun, oculus mundi, the worlds great eye, nor mans eye ſeeth it not: But all things are na­ked and open unto his eyes, with whom we have to do, Heb. 4. 13. but that, Erynnis conſcien­tiae,7 the Worm of conſcience will be alwaies checking, and gnawing, and griping of him for them, with pangs as bitter as Hell. Let Richard the third deny this if he could ſpeak but once again, was not his hand ſtill upon his Dagger, being afraid that every one met and found him, would ſlay him? did not the bloud of the harmleſſe infants he cauſed to be ſlain, that they might be a foot-ſtool to mount him into their throne, ſo trouble him, ſo diſquiet him, that either ſleep departed from his eyes, as it did from Ahaſuerus, Esth. 1. or he was ſo frighted in his ſleep, with dreadfull apparitions of ugly Devils, haling and tearing of him into pie­ces, that his life was burthenſome unto him? Let Joab ſpeak what one comfortable day or night he enjoyed, after the ſlaughter of a good Prince, I had almoſt ſaid the beſt of Princes. In the day time, trepidat ad a­rundinis umbram, he is afraid of his own ſha­dow; in the night, the cracking of a few Cheſt-nuts in the fire terrifie him: So that herein is the Prophecie fulfilled, Iſa. 57. 21. non est pax impiis, there is no peace unto the wicked, ſaith my God; or otherwiſe perhaps, Joab may vaunt it for ſome few years, or daies over his prey, in great Gallantry, out­ward8 Pomp, magnificence, and ſtatelineſſe, but ſo ſure as the Lord lives, his end ſhall not be peace, neither ſhall he go to the grave in a full age, as a rick of Corn commeth in due ſea­ſon into the barn, Job 5. 26. and to this effect ſpeaks David, Pſal. 37. 35, 36. I have ſeen the wicked ſtrong, and ſpreading himſelf like a green Bay-tree: Yet be paſſed away, and to be was gone, and I ſought him, but could not find him; and no wonder, for evil ſhall hunt the cruel man to deſtruction, Pſal. 140. 11. and ſuch is the juſtice of the Almighty, that commonly, that as he made a pit, and dig­ged it, ſo he ſhould fall into the pit that he made, Pſal. 7. 15. and,

Neque enim Lex juſtior ulla eſt,
Quam necis artifices arte perire ſua.

then evil watch, evil catch. As Tomyris ſaid unto Cyrus who had formerly ſlain hir ſon, cutting off his head, and caſting it into a Tub of bloud: ſanguinem ſitisti, ſanguinem habes, bloud thou thirſtedſt, drink thy fill, and as I have done, ſaith Adonibezek, Judg. 1. 7. ſo God hath rewarded me. Even ſo, us our Abnor, our great man in the Text, falls by the hnd of Joab, ſo Joab muſt look to9 have his fall too, although it be many years after, by Benaiah, 1 Kings 2. 31, 32, 33, 34. and the curſe of Jehoiakim King of Judah, ſhall follow him to his grave, Jer. 22. 18. There ſhall be none to lament him, ſay­ing, Ah my Brother, or ah Lord, or ah his glo­ry. And let all true hearted Iſraelites ſpeak as Cuſhi did to David of Abſolom, 2 Sam. 18. 32. So let all the Enemies of the Lord, their King periſh, and be as Joab is.

The Text is a vindication of Davids in­nocencie in, and a lively deſcription of Ab­ners death, wherein let us conſider theſe five particulars.

1. His qualities and ſo he was no mean man ſprung from the dunghil, or Ale-tap, no broken Citizen, or bankerout Gentle­man, no Mechanick, or Artificer, none of the baſe condition of Davids followers, when he fled from Saul, 1 Sam. 22. 2. but he was Iſhboſheths ſtaff, the ſupporter of Sauls houſe, and the glory of that Diadem, and ſo the Pen-man ſets him out two waies,

  • 1. As a Prince.
  • 2. As a great man.

1. As a Prince; unto which the Latine word hath a near relation, Princeps, the which ſignifies a chief head or ruler: ſecretly inſsi­nuating,10 that as of a head he ought to be defended and made much of, becauſe life conſiſts ſo well in the head as in the heart; then as a Ruler he ought to be obeyed and feared, according to Saint Paul's rule, Rom. 13. 1. Let every ſoul be ſubject to the higher Powers: but Joab had learned in­ſtead of Obſta principiis, Obsta Principibus, withſtand the beginnings of ſin, ſtifling the firſt conception of murther in his heart, to promote it, and give life unto it by the fall of a Prince; and ſo hath received to himſelf condemnation, ver. 2.

2ly, The Hebrews uſe many words, ſi­gnifying a Prince, but I ſhall make uſe but of one, and that is Naghidh, carrying this ſence, Dux, Princeps, a Captain and chief Commander, ordering, diſpoſing, and giving rules to Souldiers, to go out and come in, to draw and to ſheath their ſwords: and ſuch a Prince was Abner, and a valiant Prince: but whom Ajax cannot conquer, Vlyſſes will undermine by trea­ſon; For know ye not that a Prince, and a great man is fallen? And ſo I paſſe to the ſecond Branch.

2. As a great man. As when Ephraim ſpake, there was trembling, Hoſ. 13. 1. 11As when the Lion roars, who will not be afraid? Amos 3. 8. even ſo, when this great man ſpeaks, not onely the inferiour beaſts of the Foreſt, but even the Lion himſelf coucheth, as is clear in the 11 verſe, before the Text; and if a bare hand upon the wall, did ſo ſtarcle Belſhazzar in his cups, when men are moſt Pot-valiant, and in the Guard of his Princes, and making metry with his wives and concubines, that his countenance chan­ged, the joints of his loins were looſed, and his knees ſmote one againſt another, Dan. 5. 6. How will Joab look? How will Jo­ab ſtand? How will he ſhift when the great God ſhall make inquiſition for this great mans blood? Pſal. 9. 12. Davids heart ſmote him for cutting off but the Lap of Saul's garment, 1 Sam. 24. 5, 6. How then deeply may they be touched, that had a hand in cutting off the head of the Lords anoin­ted? for the greater the perſon, the great­er is the ſin in them that conſpire his death. Kings and Princes, and great man in au­thority, are termed gods by Gods own mouth, Pſal. 82. 6 and to act Treaſon a­gainſt ſuch, is to be treacherous to God himſelf, for which cauſe God ſpared not12 the Angels that had finned, but caſt them down into hell, and delivered them into chains of darkneſſe to be kept unto damna­tion, 2 Pet. 2. 4. What Chriſt ſpake in another kind, holds true in this, Matth. 25. 40. In as much as ye have done it unto them, ye have done it unto me.

Another particular is, the manner of this great Princes death, & ſo he is not threatned a fall, as God told Adam, that if he ſhould eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, in that day he ſhould die the death, Gen. 2. 17. for then he would have looked about him, either to prevent his fall, or to make a good preparation for his ſoul a­gainſt his fall; as the wiſe Steward did for his body, Duke 26. 4. but in the preſent tenſe, occidit, is fallen, noting the ſudden­neſſe of his death, and his unprovideneſſe for his grave, Joab not onely labouring to kill his body, but ſo far as he could his ſoul too, like as the Italian I read of endevou­red to ſerve his enemy overcome in duel; wherein we may obſerve,

1. Prov. 12. 10. The mercies of the wicked are truel.

2ly, The uncertainty of our death, we have one way into the world, but many out.

Ferro, peſte, fame, vinclis, algore, calore,
Mille modis miſeros mors rapit una viros.

as ſometimes by fire, famine, plague, water, ſword, like Abner and Joab. And this con­ſideration, ſhould move us to look for that in every place, which every where looks for us. Pharaoh taſted of deaths Cup in the deep Sea. Herod upon his throne Eglon ſunning himſelf in his Summer Parlour. Amnon when his heart was merry with wine. Ahab in the battel. Zenecharib in the houſe of his God. And who amongſt us can coaſt of to morrow, for we know not what a day may bring forth? Prov. 27. 1. Let it be our wiſedom then,

1. So to live, as if we were alwaies dying, and giving up our accounts to the great judge of Heaven and Earth of our ſeveral ſtewardſhips.

2ly. With Joſeph in the time of famine; with Solomons Piſmire in the harveſt time; and with the wiſe Virgins, in the acceptable time, to provide oyl for our Lamps, that we may be found a people ready prepared for our God, when he ſhall knock at our door, and call us.

143ly. To pray alwaies as the Church hath taught us, From ſudden death, Good Lord deliver us.

3ly. The next particular is, the time of Abners fall, and that is ſaid to be, hoc die, this day, Know ye not, that there is a Prince, and a great man, this day fallen in Iſrael? This was a day of darkneſſe, and of black­neſſe, a day of clouds, and obſcuritie, Joel 2. 2. a day of heavineſſe and mourning, a ſtormy and watery day: and in a word, ſuch a ſad day to David, and all Iſrael, as if as one man they had combined to revive their Abner with their tears, as Chriſt did Lazarus, John 11. or if they could not do that for him, yet they would witneſſe to the world their love to him, and how wonderfully they lamented his loſſe. To love a rich man, and a great man living, is no news, the living dog being better than the dead Lion, Eccleſ. 9. 4. and moreover every mans affection almoſt extending more, propter ſua, than propter ſe, for his private profit or preferment, than for any parts or goodneſſe he finds in him, like drones which haunt the Hive for the honny ſake: but to love him dead, when he can do him neither good nor harm, is rara avis, nigro­que15 ſimilima cygno, a rare quality hardly to be found among the ſons of men: and yet this was Davids caſe, Iſraels caſe for Abner, and ought to be our caſe for our Prince, and great man, that is this day fallen in our Iſrael. And ſo this leads me to the next particular.

4ly. The place where he fell, and that is ſaid to be Iſrael; he fell not amongſt the barbarous Gothes and Vandals, amongſt the Turks and Cannibals, amongſt the inhuman Switzers, in the Conqueſt of the Thuricences in battel, Anno Dom. 1443. or amongſt the Numantines, who vowed not to break their faſt, but with the fleſh of a Roman, nor drink till they had taſted of the blood of an Enemie; or amongſt the heathen and un­circumciſed: but in Iſrael, where God was known in her Palaces, Pſal. 48. 3. but in Iſ­rael, where his wonderfull acts were mani­feſted; but in Iſrael, a peculiar people cho­ſen to himſelf; but in Iſrael, where his Pro­phets taught, and his name was called up­on. Quis talia fando, temperet à lacrimis? who can reſtrain tears? that where there was ſuch gracious means, there ſhould be ſuch graceleſſe practices, by a brother­hood, like Simeon and Levi, brethren in e­vil,16 Gen. 49. 5. If this had been done at Rome, where degrading of Princes, mur­thering of heretical Princes, with their whole families, is a warrantable and meri­torious tenet, the world would not have trembled at it, nor wondered or admired it: but to be practiced in Iſrael, the wonder of the world, for as it is, Deut. 47, 8. What Nation is ſo great, unto whom the Gods come ſo near unto them, in all that they call unto the Lord for? And what Nation is ſo great, that hath ordinances and Laws ſo righteous? Sure­ly this makes Iſraels condition, equivalent to Chorozins and Bethſaidaes Mat. 11. 21. Wo to thee Corazin, wo to thee Bethſaida, for if the great works which were done in you, had been done in Tyrus and Sidon, they had repen­ted long agone in Sackeloth and Aſhes. Where­fore it ſhall be eaſier for Tyrus and Sidon at the day of judgement, than for you; than for Iſrael. Joab and Abiſhai his brother were men of War, and ſo the leſſe marvell they neither reſpected the perſon, nor place where they ſhed blood: but the hun­ters of our Prince, and great man to death, were not only Sword-men, but Gown-men, even wolves in ſheeps clothing: and if God ſpared not the old world, nor Sodom nor17 Gomorrah, 2 Pet. 2. 5, 6. how ſhall they eſ­cape the judgement of God to come? and, the judgement of God is according to truth, a­gainst them that commit ſuch things, Rom. 2. 2. Wherefore as Daniel counſelled King Nebuchadnezzar, 4. 27. Break off thyſins by righteouſneſs, and thine iniquities by mer­cy towards the poor, that there be a heal­ing of thine errour; even ſo, my counſel to all Iſrael that have had a hand in the Princes death, and great mans fall, is accor­ding to that we read of, Amos 4. 12. Pre­pare to meet thy God, O Iſrael. For repen­tance may heal, where thy ſin hath wound­ed.

5ly. Davids Proclamation throughout all Iſrael and Judah, to take notice of his loſſe, and their loſſe; his and their loſſe, as if they had with him loſt the brighteſt ſtar in the Firmament; or had loſt their right eyes, right hands, or their right feet, or as the Church complained, Lam. 4 20. The breath of our Noſtrils, the Anointed of the Lord is taken from us, of whom we ſaid, Ʋnder his ſhadow we ſhall be preſerved alive among the Heathen. How hath the Lord darkened the Daughter of Zion in his wrath, and hath caſt down from Heaven unto earth the18 beauty of Iſrael? draw near, behold, and ſee what a Prince, what a great man is this day fallen. Know ye not, that there is a Prince, and a great man fallen this day in Iſrael?

1. The cauſes moving David to publiſh this Proclamation, were v. 37. his Innocen­cy, to clear him in the face of all the peo­ple, that he had no hand in ſpilling this innocent blood, finding no fault in the man, of thoſe things whereof others accu­ſed him, as Pilate ſaid of Chriſt, although with a better mind, Lu. 23. 14.

2ly. To make Joab the more odious to the people for executing ſuch a raſh, and malicious, and unnatural fact. As Jerobo­am is ſtigmatized with this brand-mark, lying in his Grave, Jeroboam the Son of Nebat, who made Iſrael to ſin; and as Judas the Traytor with this, Judas Iſcariot who betrayed his Maſter. So Joab hath this ſpot and blot upon his Coat of Arms, to be ſeen & read of all ages: Joab that in the time of peace ſlew Abner in the Gate, v. 27. And for this David, and let all Iſrael curſe him in the words, verſe 29. Let the blood of Abner fall on the head of Joab, and on all his Fathers Houſe, that the Houſe of Joab be never without ſome that have running Iſſues, or Le­per,19 or that leaneth on a ſtaff, or that doth fall on the ſword, or that lacketh bread.

3ly. That Joab by the ſight of the pub­lick mourning, and vent which the King and People gave to their full hearts, might be convinced of his ſin, and ſo brought to repentance. Know ye not (and thou Joab too) that there is a Prince, and a great man this day fallen in Iſrael?

The Obſervations from what hath been ſaid, are,

Obſerv. 1. That great mens death, and Princes fall, ought to be lamented by all. This David confirms both by Precept and Example: and it is ſaid Praecepta ducunt, Exempla trahunt, Precepts do ſweetly al­lure, but examples do violently draw men to obedience. So that if the one or the o­ther be of force to work upon our hearts, and eyes, to weep with Jeremiah day and night, for our Abner; then look upon Da­vid, Liſſen to his charge to all the people that were with him, verſ. 31, 32. Rent your clothes, and put on Sackcloth, and mourn before Abner, and King David himſelf followed the Beer: And the King lift up his voice and wept beſides the Sepulchre of Abner, and all the peo­ple wept; and verſ. 33, 34. The King lament­ed20 over Abner, and all the people wept again for him: As if ſuch a mans death can never be over-lamented. Know ye not, ſaith Da­vid? as if no man ſhould be ignorant of this his duty to his Prince, to his Country. When Joſiah was buried, there was ſo great mone made for him, 2 Chron. 35. 22. that it grew into a Proverb, Zech. 12. 11. Like the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon. Yea when Jacob, but a mean man (although father to a Prince) was buried, they made ſo great, ſuch an exceeding ſore lamentation for him, that when the Canaa­nites, which dwelt in the land, ſaw the mour­ning in Gored Aad, They ſaid among them ſelves, Surely this is a great mourning unto the Egyptians, Gen. 50. 10, 11. Our Abner, our Jo­ſiah, our Prince, our great man is fallen, and why ſhould not we do likewiſe? as Chriſt told the Lawyer, Luke 10 37.

1. Becauſe Princes are nurſing Fathers to their people, Thus ſaith the Lord, Iſa. 49. 23. Kings ſhall be thy nurſing Fathers, and Queens thy nurſing Mothers.

Now with what a tender love, with what ſtrong affections? and with what vigilant care do Fathers & mothers bear their ſons in their arms, and carrie them on their21 ſhoulders? as is the Prophets phraſe. Chriſts commandement to the Diſciples of the Pha­riſees, with the Herodians, was, reddere Caeſa­ri, quae ſunt Caeſaris, to give to Ceſar thoſe things which are Ceſars, Mat. 22. 22. and if we muſt do this to Ceſar a Paynim Empe­rour, then much more are we bound to give to Chriſtian Kings their due, and what thoſe things are, Saint Paul tells us, Rom. 13. 7. 1. Tribute. 2. Obedience. 3. Ho­nour. Firſt Tribute, for their care over us, and great charge in providing for us at home and abroad. Secondly, Obedience, as our Superiours. Thirdly, Honour, as our tender Fathers, Exod. 20. 12. ſo that I may invert Gods own words, Mal. 1. 6. A ſon honoureth his father, and a ſervant his Maſter? If they be your fathers, where is their Honour? Surely they are baſtards, and not ſons, that will not honour their fathers, I and ſuch carefull fathers, who wake whiles we ſleep ſoundly, and watch, like Epaminon­das, whilſt we ſport our ſelves, and take care for us, when we little dream of their care. The Chronicles ſpeak of Henry the 4th, who being ſick and in a trance, that his ſon and heir Henry the 5th took his Crown from his beds head, and tried how it would fit his22 own; but his father recovering himſelf, and awaking, and miſſing of it, and un­derſtanding the matter, told him, Ah ſon, didſt thou but know how full of cares the Crown is, thou wouldſt not be ſo greedy of it. And it is written of Eutrapiles, that his cuſtome was to prefer thoſe to honour and riches whom he moſt hated; thereby to fill their hearts and heads with continu­all cares and vexations, there being more gall than hony in them: ſo that as one ſpake worthily of a Biſhop, Epiſcopatus nomen est laboris non honoris, the name of a Biſhop ſounds more of labour than ho­nour, unto which alludes that of the A­poſtle, 1 Tim. 3. 1. This is a true ſaying, if a­ny man deſire the Office of a Biſhop, he deſireth a worthy work: Even ſo the Office of a King or Prince, ſpeaks not ſo much his ſubli­mity or glory, as his activity for the com­mon good; and if this were well weigh­ed in wiſdomes ballance, Can any Chil­dren be ſo unnatural, as not to lament the loſſe of ſuch a father? Certes, He that hath not a tear, nay many tears for his fall, diſ­covers his foul diſpoſition, and that he hath ſucked unnatural milk (like Rhemus and Romulus) of whom Hiſtory makes men­tion,23 that they were nouriſhed up by a ſhe-Wolf. Know ye not, that a Prince, agreat man, Pater Patriae, a father of our Coun­trey, a Martyr for his Countrey, is fallen? and do not the Lamentations of Jeremy bet­ter become us, than the Canticles of Solo­mon? Do not Heraclitus his tears ſuis better (huic diei) to this day, than Democritus his laughter? Laugh that will (thinks Da­vid) But I will weep till I can weep no more.

2ly. Becauſe Princes are the Miniſters of God for our wealth, Rom. 13. 4. They are as Shepherds over the flock of Chriſt, Num. 27. 17. They are as Bucklers and ſhields unto the people, Pſal. 47. 9. Ʋnder whoſe ſhadowing boughs our neſts are built, Ezech. 31. 3, 6. They are as watchmen over a City, as the foundation to an houſe, as the walls to a Vineyard, as Pilots to a ſhip, and as the Chariots and horſemen of Iſrael. Now if the Watchman ſleepeth, the foundation de­cayeth, the walls be broken down, the Pi­lot dieth, and the Chariots and horſemen be ſnatched and taken away, hath not the City, the houſe, the ſhip, and all Iſrael that is in it, great cauſe to ſcreek and ſcream, and roar, and blubber their cheeks with tears, for ſuch a loſſe?

243ly. Becauſe if the Title of father, which is an amiable Title, or Miniſter, which is a ſerviceable Title, cannot draw water out of the hard rock in Horeb, and your ſtony hearts, then lo they are called angels, 2 Sam. 24. 17. and the ſons of God, which are Titles of honour indeed, Pſalm 82. 6. to be the ſon of God is the nobleſt Pedigree in the world: to be as the Angels of God, is the higheſt promotion in heaven, and of them it is ſaid, Heb. 1. 14. Are they not all mi­niſtring ſpirits, ſent forth to miniſter for their ſakes which ſhall be heirs of ſalvation? I read of divers properties of Angels, which may allude to good Kings.

1. Dirigere gradientes, To guide and direct men in the right way, Prov. 23. 20. Be­hold I ſend mine Angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee to the place which I have appointed.

2ly, Confortare deficientes, To comfort the broken hearted, and to relieve thoſe that are in want. Gen. 21. 17, 19. The An­gel of God called unto Hagar in diſtreſſe, and ſhewed her a well of water, whereby ſhe and her child were preſerved from death, and 1 Kings 29. 5, 6. The Angel of God brought bread and water to nouriſh Elijain his diſtreſſe.

253ly, Flagellare praevaricantes, To ſcourge thoſe that do amiſſe: thus the Angel of the Lord ſmote in the Camp of the Aſsyrians, one hundred fourſcore and five thouſand in one night, 2 Kings 19. 35. and 2 Mach. 3. 26. We find how Heliodorus was beaten with ſore ſtripes for robbing the Temple, that at his return he certified his Maſter, that if he had an enemy traytor, he ſhould ſend him to Hieruſalem, and from thence he ſhould receive him well ſcourged, if he eſcaped with his life. Cautiores exemplo vos. If one Angel of God could do ſuch execution upon malefactors, how ſhould ye be afraid to do any thing to grieve him, when he hath mo than twelve legions of Angels to fight his battels againſt offendors? Matth. 26. 53.

4ly, Gratificare orantes, To offer up the prayers of the Sants, Rev. 8. 3.

5ly, Juvare certantes, To give aid to the ſervants of the living God againſt their e­nemies; and ſo when the Aramites compaſ­ſed Samaria with a great hoſt, and the Prophets ſervant was at his wits end, not knowing what to do, or whither to turn him, preſently at Eliſha's prayer his eyes were opened, and he looked and beheld the26 mountain was full of horſes and Chariots, round about Eliſha, 2 Kings 6. 17. Here ye have heard of the office of Angels for the good of man, eſpecially for them that fear God, and Kings with Princes were ordained to the like purpoſe, i. e. by godly example, good Laws, and faithfull labou­rers in the Goſpel under them, to lighten men to Canaan above, for

Regis ad exemplum totucomponitur orbis.

2ly, To relieve thoſe that are in want, Thus the Kings of England have their Al­moners to fling out money to the poor. 3ly, The Apoſtle tells us, Rom. 13. 4. They bear not the ſword for nought; for they are the Ministers of God to take vengeance on them that do evil, 4ly, Righteous lips are the de­light of Kings, Prov. 16. 13. and ſo ſtand in the gap, like Moſes, between God and his people, to make their atonement for them. 5ly, To vindicate the cauſe of the innocent from the oppreſſour, and wrong­doers. To this effect ſpeaks Solomon, Prov. 29. A King that judgeth the poor in truth, his Throne ſhall be eſtabliſhed for ever, and Prov. 29. 28. and for this light to be put out and27 extinguiſhed, this oyl to be poured on the ground, this ſword to ruſt, this innocency to be ſmothered in duſt and aſhes, this judge of the poor, fatherleſſe and widow, to be condemned, and this Angel to fall, Let us not any more cry out with the woman of Tekoah, 2 Sam. 14. 4. Help O King, but help O Iſrael; for a Prince, and a great man is fallen this day in thee O Iſrael.

4ly. Becauſe people without a Prince, are like thoſe Acephali, a body without a head, and ſheep without a ſhepherd, as Orphans Fatherleſſe, as Servants without a Maſter, as the world without a Sun. If the eye or head be cut off, ſurely the body will periſh. If there be no ſhepherd, the ſheep lie open to ſpoil by the greedy wolf and Jeſuite. If the world loſeth his Sun, all things wither to nought; and if the Ser­vant be robbed of his Maſter that feeds him fully, cloths him richly, and rewards him liberally, can their eys be dry to think of their loſſe? Magis crendo quam fruendo, The Sheep, the Servant, the body will know and feel their miſery ſooner by the want of their Prince, than they were ſenſi­ble of their own happineſſe in him. Had I wiſt will not ſerve turn, to ſay they were28 deceived, to ſay they were not ſenſible of Joab's juggle, will not avail them in the day of wrath, no more than their unjuſt gotten riches ſince, by Abners fall, Prov. 11. 4. And ſeeing one Prince, one great man will not be ſuffered to reign over them, as they in the Goſpel ſaid, Luke 19. 14. How juſt will it be with God, as the wiſe man ſpeaks, Prov. 28. 2. For the tranſgreſsion of the Land, many ſhould be the Princes thereof, whoſe leaſt finger ſhould be heavier than the others loins, as Rehoboam told the Iſ­raelites; and for gentle rods they ſhould be chaſtiſed with ſcourges, 1 Kings 12. 14.

5ly. Princes ſeldom fall alone, but their Lord-like Train will as well follow them to the grave, as to the palace. If the tree be ſtubbed up at the root, the top branches muſt fall with it; the Lord avert this ſad preſage, if it be his bleſſed will.

Ʋſe Is for our Inſtruction.

1. To lament over, and for our Abner. As the Turks have a Proverb unto this day, when they would expreſſe their grief, in the privation of any comfort, Great ſuch a one is dead, as if all their hopes were bedded with him, and all their joyes were nipped in the bud. And as Phinehas his wife hear­ing29 that the Ark of God was taken, 1 Sam. 4. 21. preſently fell into travel, calling hir Sons name Ichabod, for ſaith ſhe, The glory is departed from Iſrael. Even ſo, every true Iſraelite may ſpeak, Ichabod, our glory is de­parted from us. Abner is fallen, great Abner, and not more great than good; Of whom it may be ſaid, as Pharaoh of Joſeph, Gen. 41. 38. Can we find ſuch a man as this? and yet this Abner, this great man is fallen: the Lord be good unto our Iſrael, that all Iſrael falls not preſently after him.

Ob. If your Abner were ſo great, ſo good, why did not God ſuffer him to grow to a good old age, as he once promiſed Abraham? Gen. 15. 15. Nay, why did God ſuffer Joab to mow him down like graſſe, before his eye was ſatisfied with ſeeing, his ear with hearing, and his heart with luſting? Eccleſ 1. 8. Ah certainly, latet anguis ſub herba, there was ſome Pad hidden under this ſtraw, Some Achans wedge of gold, Some abominable execrable thing in him, that God brought him down ſo ſuddenly, ſo wonderfully, as it is ſaid of Jeruſalem, Lam. 1. 9.

Anſ. 1. It is not for duſt and aſhes to enter into, arcana Dei, Gods ſecrets, or dive into Gods Cabinet counſel, leſt whilſt we ſeek30 to know thoſe things that are not revealed 'we ſind not the comfort of thoſe things that are reveiled. It was wittily anſwered by one that was asked what God did before he made the World: makes this reply, He made Hell. for ſuch curious Inquiſitors as thou art; quae ſupra nos, nihil ad nos, thoſe things that are above our ſphere, belong not unto us to ſearch into: Peeviſh curioſi­tie in man below, is deteſted by God above. As the Maſter of the houſe ſaid to his La­bourer, Mat. 20. 14. So I ſpeak to thee, Friend, take that which is thine own, and go thy way, and let the reſt alone.

2ly, Who art thou O man that conten­deſt againſt God, or pleadeſt with God? Rom. 9. 20. Wilt thou take Gods glory a­way, and give it to another? Iſa. 42. 8. Wilt thou wreſt the ſword out of the Lords hand, and maintain juſtice in thine own? Shew me thy warrant from Heaven for this? Shew me any Law of God, or any Law of man for this.

Ob. 1 Sam. 15. 3. 33. Did not the Lord command Saul to ſmite Agag King of the Amalekites? and when Saul had ſpared his life, did not Samuel hew him into pieces?

31Anſw. But our Abner was no Agag, our Joab no Samuel, and ſo I proceed.

3ly, Iſa 57. 1. The righteous periſheth, and no man conſidereth it in heart, and merciful men (and Kings too) are taken away, and no man under­ſtandeth that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.

4ly, God might ſuffer Abner to fall for the greater aggravation of Joab's condemnation.

5ly, Suppoſe our Abner, our Prince, our great man, had ſin in him, as there is no man that ſinneth not, ſaith Solomon, 1 Kings 8. 46. and to the like effect ſpeaks John, 1 Ep. 1. 8. yet Religion, yet Charity thinketh no evil, 1 Cor. 13. 5. that he was not guilty of ſo ſoul a crime, that nothing could expiate his ſin, but his Fall.

2ly, It teacheth us, that it is a great ſhame for any of our eyes to be dry in ſuch a ge­neral loſſe, and publik calamity. Jacob wept and mourned for his Joſeph, and would not be comforted, Gen. 37. 35. how much more cauſe have we to mourn for the loſſe of our father, our nurſing father? It is obſerved, that the love of Parents de­ſcends and flows, with a greater ſtream to their children, than childrens love aſcends upwards to their Parents, and this God32 ſhews, Iſaiah 49. 15. Can a father forget his child, or a woman not have compaſsion on the ſon of her womb? but he ſaith not, Can a child forget his father? as if that were too frequent, too common, and lay at every mans door: but ſpero meliora de vobis, I hope better things of you, and that ye have learn­ed better things, and your duty better, than to ſet light by your father, Deut. 67. 16. We take much notice of thoſe whoſe conſcien­ces are ſo ſeared, and hearts hardened, that have not a tear at their fathers grave; and God and angels will take notice of us for ſtupidity and blockiſhneſſe, if we will not weep for our Abner, our Prince and great man that is fallen.

3ly, If prayers and Supplications ought to be made for all men, but eſpecially for Kings and all that are in authority, 1 Tim. 2. 1. then conſequently it muſt follow, that their deaths ought to be lamented more than other mens, and if ſo, then

Ʋſe 2. Is for reproof.

1. If thoſe that rejoice and glory in their ſhame, Phil. 3. 19. whoſe end without great Repentance will be their damnation. One boaſteth that he ſubſcribed to the lions death, another that he tried the lion, an­other33 that he ſentenced the lions damme, another that he ſlew the lion, another that he ſhared of the lions skin; but if there be a wo unto them that ſpeak good of evil, and e­vil of good, which put darkneſs for light, and light for darkneſs, that put bitter for ſweet, and ſweet for ſowre, Iſa. 5. 20. then as Jacob ſaid of Simeon and Levi, Brethren in iniquity, Gen. 49. 6. Let not my ſoul enter into their ſecret, and my glory be not joyned with their Aſſembly; for an horrible curſe and wo, like the ſin of Cain, lieth at their door.

2ly, Of thoſe that had the leaſt hand in, or approved of Abners fall. Certes many men with Pilate, will ſeem to waſh their hands clean from his blood, becauſe they were no principal actors in it, but qui non vetat peccare, quum poteſt, iubet, ſaith Seneca, He that is not with me, ſaith Chriſt, is againſt me, or he that hinders not a foul fact, but ap­proves of it, is as guilty as the principal in it. Abner is fallen, by whom and whoſe means? the ſcruple is reſolved, verſe 30. of this Chapter: ſo Joab and Abiſhai his brother ſlew Abner, Abiſhai being privy to the murther, and not preventing it, is counted by the Spirit of God, as deep in blood, as the bloody executioner of the34 Treaſon, Joab himſelf; David killed not Ʋriah, but the men of Rabbab: yet becauſe he plotted and conſpired againſt his life, and was well pleaſed with his death, Nathan tells him point-blank, and in plain terms, 2 Sam. 12 9. Thou haſt killed Uriah the Hit­tite with the ſword, and hast ſlain him with the ſword of the children of Ammon: Now there­fore the ſword ſhall never depart from thine houſe. Ahab was not acceſſary unto Naboth's ſtoning, but his wife Jezabel, who made uſe of his Seal unto the Elders and Nobles that were in his City, that they might de­prive him of life and Vineyard: yet he ap­proving of what was done, and rejoycing in his ſpoil and prey that he had taken, Elijah the Tiſhbite meets him, and upbraids him of cruelty, covetouſneſſe, and blood, 1 Kings 21. 19. Haſt thon killed and alſo taken poſſeſsion? therefore in the place where dogs lick­ed the blood of Naboth, ſhall dogs even lick thy blood alſo. And in this ſence, Saul bewail­ed his ſad condition, and acknowledged his unworthineſſe and unfitneſſe to be a Miniſter of the Goſpel to the Gentiles, be­cauſe he perſecuted the Church of God, and had a hand in Stevens death, not as one that murthered him, as a cut-throat, but al­lowed35 and applauded them that acted that villany, as his own words beſt ſpeak it, Acts 22. 20. Lord, when the blood of thy Mar­tyr Steven was ſhed, I alſo ſtood by and conſent­ed to his death, and kept the clothes of them that ſlew him. Now the Marginal Note ſaith, this is properly ſpoken, for Steven was mur­thered of a ſort of rude rakehels, not by order of Juſtice, but by open force, and he liking of what was done, and lulling, and ſpurring them forward unto it, ac­counts himſelf a chief inſtrument in the conſpiracy of robbing God of a Saint, the Church of a pillar, and the world of a bright ſhining light, which would have en­lightened them that fit in darkneſs to the true light, Iohn 1. 9. and ſo to the light of heaven. As the intruders into other mens Rectories plead for themſelves, that they thruſt them not out, when they are conten­ted to inherit their poſſeſſions, and eat up the bread that ſhould feed the right owners and their children, approving of the Sequeſtration: even ſo there be, that plead not guilty of Abners fall, when in their hearts they cryed Cucifige, let him die, and ſtroked the contrivers of his ruine: but how one or the other can anſwer their jug­gle36 before God, who judgeth righteouſly, & taketh the affection and will for the deed, I am ignorant, unleſſe it be with ſpeech­leſneſs, like to him that came to the wed­ding feaſt without a wedding garment, Matth. 22. 1. and ſo partake of his porti­on and bitter potion.

3ly, Thoſe that reviled Abner living, and detract from him much more being fallen, their greateſt religion is ill byaſſed, which is to ſpeak evil of their Prince. He that is moſt foul mouthed like Shimei, is held fit­eſt to be a States-man, and have a hand in reformation. When Paul had called Ananias whited wall, and the ſtanders by check'd him for reviling Gods high Prieſt: he ac­knowledged his errour, ſaying, I knew not that he was the High Priest, for it is written, thou ſhalt not ſpeak evil of the ruler of thy people, Acts 23. 5. from whence may be inferred, that to calumniate him is ſin.

4ly, This highly reproves thoſe Servants of this Prince, this great man, that helped to pull him down. Gravior inimicus qui latet ſub pectore, a boſome enemie is of all the worſt. When Caeſar was ſtabbed in the Se­nate houſe, and ſeeing Brutus acting his part amongſt the Conſpirators, it cut him to the37 heart, uſing theſe words,〈…〉〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, what and thou too my ſon Brutus? then fall Cae­ſar: even ſo, for a Prince to bring up birds to pick out his own eyes, and breed vipers to ſting him to death, it cannot but much adde to the bitterneſſe of his fall, and this made David to complain ſo ſadly, Pſal. 41. 9. That his friend, his familiar friend, whom he truſted, which did eat of his bread, lifted up his heel againſt him: that is, like a wild horſe to kick at him, and trample him under his ſeet. Of all injuries there are none ſtick ſo near to a man, or go ſo near to his heart, as, bene facere, & male audire, to do well, and to be rewarded ill, by a Servant, or any o­ther ingratefull wretches. The Oxe knoweth his owner, Iſay 1. 3. and for a man not to know his maſter, and maker, is worſe than brutiſh: and deſerves nigro carbone notari, to be branded for a vile man indeed. A houſhold enemie is noted by Chriſt for a ſharp plague, Mat. 10. 36. and yet ſuch is our Abners con­dition to fall by ſuch. Joab, had Zimri peace that ſlew his Maſter? 2 Kin. 9. 31. then look for no peace living or dying.

Obſ. Occidit, is fallen; from whence may be obſerved, that death is no deth to them that die in the Lord. It is but as a ſleep,38 from which they ſhall be awakened at the ſound of the laſt Trumpet. And in this ſence ſaith Chriſt to his diſciples, John 11. 11. Our friend Lazarus ſleepeth, but I go to wake him up. It is but as a falling to the earth, from whence we through Gods might, recover our ſelves, and riſe again. It is but as (Requie­torium) a Bed of reſt: as Iſay ſhews, 57. 2 They ſhall reſt in their Beds, every one that walketh be­fore him: and men go not to bed to lie there for ever, but ſome ſhort time. It was ſaid by a Jeſter unto a great man, If I fall, I can riſe again, but if thou falleſt, thou wilt never riſe more; but this holds true of the faithfull in general, Dan. 12. 2. they ſhall riſe to everlaſt­ing life; thus David tells not his ſervants, A Prince or a great man is dead, but is fallen, being aſſured that he ſhould riſe again (like Antheus) with greater ſtrength, and courage, and honour, and glory, than ever he enjoyed before, like Damaſcens wiſe, yet depoſed King, as we read of in M. Bunnyes reſolutions.

Ʋſe Here is comfort for Abners friends, that although his body is ſown in corrup­ion, yet it ſhall be raiſed in incorruption. If it be ſown in diſhonour, yet it ſhall be raiſed in glory, 1 Cor. 15. 42, 43. that although he was conquered by39 Treaſon, yet he is Conquerour over all his enemies, and greateſt Traytors, death, ſin, and Satan; that although he be fallen, yet he is mounted up aloft upon the wings of Cherubims and glorious angels, like Lazarus, into the boſome of his father; that although he be loſſe to them, yet their loſſe is his gain; for inſtead of war he finds peace, inſtead of ſorrow, joy unſpeakable, inſtead of vexation of ſpirit, The things which eye hath not ſeen, ear hath not heard, neither have entred into the heart of man, 1 Cor. 2. 9. inſtead of a corruptible Crown, an incorruptible, Chap. 9. 25. Inſtead of a Crown of thorns, a Crown of eaſe, inſtead of an earthly Kingdome, a Kingdome which endureth for ever, even the King­dom of God and of Chriſt, inſtead of earthly treaſures, heavenly, inſtead of buffet­ings, reproaches, ſpittings in the face, kiſſes, with ſweet embracings; Inſtead of Apage, Eu­ge, be gone, We will not have this man reign longer over us, welcome, and well done good and faithfull ſervant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord, Matth. 25. 23. inſtead of the ſociety of beaſts, ſuch as Paul fought withall at Epheſus, the fellowſhip of glori­fied Saints and Angels. Iacob in his dream40 ſaw a Ladder, the foot thereof ſtood upon earth, but the top reached up to heaven, Gen. 28 12. and by this Ladder, our Ab­ner, our Prince (like an Angel of God) is aſcended up thither. Queſtion not this, O man, whoſoever thou art; for he was li­ving, a living pattern of vertue and godli­neſſe to all. 1 For ſobriety; for who could detect him of drunkenneſſe? 2ly of chaſti­ty; for who could blemiſh him of un­cleaneſſe? Poſſe, & nolle, nobile, What Ca­ſtle by promotion, or bribes, or command cannot a great man ſcale? and not to ſub­due it to his power and luſt, is Prince-like indeed. 3ly, Of Piety, Religion, being diligent in Prayer, ſincere in his devotions, and admirably attentive in hearing of Ser­mons, and that ſometimes in my eye. 4ly, Of knowledge and learning; witneſs his Book entituled〈…〉〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, which few Biſhops with all their learning and rea­ding could outrun, and witneſs his Diſpu­tation with the Scotch Miniſter, who ſhall be nameleſs, and whom he ſo foiled by ar­guments, that whereas before he was his bit­ter enemy in Pulpit, and out of it, he ſet forth unto the world his own recantation, and his Princes vindication to undeceive41 his people. 5ly, Of bounty and liberali­ty to his followers, I, and to ſome ingrate­full, and undeſerving followers. 6ly, Of patience; for after the example of Chriſt, 1 Pet. 2. 23. Being reviled, he reviled not a-again: when he ſuffered, he threatned not, but committed it to him that judgeth righ­teouſly. 7ly, Of magnanimity; being as daring as a lion, as ſome of his own Cap­tains can ſpeak, and would have proved it in red letters, (if he might have been ſuffer­ed) wrote with a pen of iron. 8ly, Of compaſſion; lamenting the loſſe of his ene­mies, as if their blood had been drawn from his own heart. Iulian honoured thoſe Souldiers that died in his war and ſervice, but he thoſe that died in the war againſt him. 9ly, Of affection to his wife; ſo that as Solomon ſpeaks of the good woman, I may truly aver of him, Prov. 31. 29. Many hus­bands have done vertuouſly, but thou ſurmount­eſt them all. 1. For fidelity to her bed, a rare thing to be found in great men. 2. For affability and kindneſs to her,••ving her as his own ſoul. 3 For indulgencie over his and her children. Now laying all theſe together, as ſo many ſteps or ſtairs, or ſtakes of the Ladder, doubtleſſe his works52 follow him, Rev. 14. 13 and he is paſſed and gone to your father, and his father, to his God and your God. Wherefore comfort ye one another with theſe words, 1 Theſ 4, 18. And as Chriſt ſaid to the daughters of Ie­ruſalem, Luke 23. 28 Weep not for him, but for your ſelves, left as a prey to the wolf, hur­rying and worrying Chriſts flock.

Ʋſe 2. Abner is fallen. As the Widow of Zarephath ſpake to Elijah, 1 Kings 17. 18. O thou man of God, art thou come to call my ſins to remembrance, and to ſlay my ſon? Even ſo, Abners fall ſhould put Iſrael in mind of their ſins, which have pulled him down from his Throne, and of a ſudden Repentance, leſt they follow him to the grave. If old Eli was puniſhed for the iniquity of his ſons, 1 Sam. 3. 12, 13, 14. then by the ſame rule, a Father of his Countrey may ſuffer for the wickedneſs of his children and people.

Obſ. 3. Hoc die, This day; from whence I obſerve, that all men have their falling day, The Sun that now ſhines will ſet, the Moon that now is at Full will wain, the ſee that now flows will ebbe. After a Spring will follow an Autumn: after a Summer comes a hard Winter, and after the green blade comes a harveſt. Death thruſts in53 his ſickle, and the faireſt corn falls to the ground. Wiſe men die, and alſo the igno­rant and fooliſh periſh together, Pſal. 49. 10. I ſaid ye are gods, but ye ſhall die like men, and fall like others, 82. ver. 7. All fleſh is graſſe, and all the glory of man like the flower of the field, the graſſe withereth, the flower fadeth away, becauſe the Spirit of the Lord blow­eth upon it. Surely all fleſh is graſſe, omnis Caro, all fleſh, the fleſh of Princes and great men, ſo well as of the Peaſant and begger. Paul ſaith, Heb. 9. 27. Decretum eſt omnibus mori, There is an appointed time for all men to die. All the ſeed of Adam have had their day. Noah, Abraham, Iſaac, Iacob, Solemon, Sampſon, with our Abner. Know ye not that there is a Prince and a great man fallen this day in Iſrael?

Ob. If God bounds mans life to an ap­pointed time, to a day, then Ioab ſeems to fulfill the good pleaſure of God, in giving a full period to Abners life: he was but as the Atropos to cut the threed of his morta­lity aſunder, and ſo how could this be ſaid to be ſin in him?

Anſ. Cain might plead the ſame Argu­ment in murthering of his brother Abel, but how diſpleaſing it was to the moſt high, let44 his puniſhment, let his yellings and roar­ings witneſſe to the world.

2ly, Although mans appointed time be known to God, yet it is unknown to man: ſo he is called Palmoni, which ſignifies a ſe­cret number, becauſe he knoweth the num­ber of our dayes, which is ſecret and hid­den to us; for as Chriſt ſpake of the end of the world, Mat. 24. 36. ſo may I ſpeak in this kind, Of that day and hour knoweth no man: And ſo it muſt needs follow, that Io­ab's wickedneſſe was Monſtrum, horrendum, moſt hainous and deteſtable.

Ʋſe 1. All men have their falling day. Be wiſe now therefore O ye Kings, be learned ye Iudges of the earth, ſerve the Lord in fear. Fe­riunt ceiſos fulmina montes, the higher ye are, the more tickliſh ye ſtand, and the more ready ye are to fall: ye ſtand upon ſlippe­ry places, and are ſuddenly caſt down, con­ſumed and periſhed, Pſal. 73. 18, 19. Quem dies videt veniens ſuperbum, hunc dies fugiens videt jacentem. Whom the morning behold ſwelling and ſtrutting like the proud Pea­cock, the Evening beheld wallowing in his own blood and gore. Know ye not that a Prince is fallen this day? The day of great men is no longer than the poor mans day;45 and therefore it will be their greateſt ho­nour and wiſdome to work out their ſalva­tion whilſt it is day, Phil. 2. 12. Heb. 3. 13. For the night cometh, when no man can work, John 9. 4.

Ʋſe 2. Here is inſtruction for inferi­ours, to pray with Moſes, Pſal. 90. 12. Lord teach us ſo to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wiſdome, and there is no wiſdom like to that of looking well to the better part with Mary, and gaining of hea­ven. It is written of Alexander the great, that a little pit held him after his death, whom the whole world could ſcarcely con­tain living, and ſo he was ſtill crowding for more elbow room, according to that of the Poet.

Ʋnus Pellaeo juveni vix ſufficit orbis.

And of Franciſcus Borgia, ſeeing a little Tomb and Coffin to contain all the Prince­ly glory, power and magnificence of that great Empreſſe Auguſta, that he departed from her Funeral, ſaying, Mortem Auguſtae ſi­bi vitam attuliſse, that her death ſhould give him life. Even ſo let the conſideration of the mortality of our bodies, quicken us, and put life into us, to labour for the im­mortality56 of our ſouls in bliſſe. Let the me­ditation of ſic tranſit gloria mundi, all earth­ly glory vaniſheth immediately like flax that is ſet on fire, as the Maſter of the Ceremo­nies was wont to ſpeak to the Pope, the firſt day of his inauguration, mind us to ſeek after the things above, Col. 3. 1. which fade not nor fail not, Luke 22. 33. It was the ſaying of Auguſtine, neſcis qua hora veniet, vigila, ut quod neſcis quando veniet, pa­ratum te inveniat quum venerit: & ad hoc for­te neſcis quando veniet, ut ſemper paratus ſis, the which I may interpret by our Saviours own words, Matth. 25. 13. Ye know neither the day nor the hour when the Son of man will come: watch therefore, that when he cometh he may find you well-doing. And for this cauſe of that day and hour knoweth no man, that every man ſhould watch and be found a people ready prepared for the Lord, Luke 1. 17. and ſo enter into the Kingdome prepared for them from the be­ginning of the wotld, Matth. 25. 34. When Pharaoh, Abimelech, Siſera, Herod, Abner, leaſt dreamed of their fall, then their day was at an end: Let then Abolibah learn to be wiſe by the puniſhment laid upon her ſi­ſter Abolah, for what is ſpoke of Abner here,57 will be verified of all in the ſame ſence, al­though not words, Know ye not, that a Prince, and a great man is this day fallen in Iſrael?

Obſ. 4. In Iſrael. Gods Church is not free from ſpots. In Paradiſe there was a dead­ly ſtinging Serpent, in Chriſts boſome a Juda. In the faireſt garden Later anguis ſub herba, will be ſome venemous creature. Iſra­el was a nurſery of Religion and Prophets: It was the Lords peculiar treaſure, Exod. 19. 5. and Vine, and yet lo this treaſure hath a canker, this Vine a deadly Viper couch­ing under her branches to ſting Abner unto death. Know ye not that a Prince, and a great man is fallen this day? How? By Treaſon. Where? In Iſrael. whom? By Joab. I might en­large my ſelf farther, but I will conclude all in a few words.

The Alluſion.

1. Abner died when he leaſt thought of death: even ſo our Prince and great man, is pulled down to his grave in the flower and ſtrength of his years, when he leaſt thought of the turning of the Sun••Ceſar being asked what death he would chooſe, anſwered, no lingring, but a ſudden death,48 and this our Prince enjoyes, being alive, and dead in a moment; the breath of man can ſcarce pronounce ſo faſt, Est, but the Ec­cho anſwereth as faſt, Non est, he is fallen.

2ly. Abner died a violent death: even ſo our Prince by unmercifull hands on every ſide is bereaved of his life; Gebal, Ammon and Amalech, Edom and Iſhmael, Moab and the Agarims, Jeſuites and Zamzummims, Deut. 2. 0. that is, a people, who called them­ſelves Rephaims, preſervers or Phyſicians, to heal and reform vices, but played the De­vils to open a gap to let in all hereſie and abomination, and wickedneſs and pro­faneſſe, and covetouſneſs which is idola­try; Theſe all of them have taken crafty counſel againſt him, Pſal. 83. 3. and wor­ried him, and dethroned him, and like Cannihals have devoured him.

3ly. Abner was evil ſpoken of by Joab, and his innocency tainted and ſpotted by him, and his integrity and beſt meaning miſconſtrued and miſinterpreted, 24, 25. ver. Even ſo, our Prince, our great man, was calumniated and reproched in the Ar­my by rude Souldiers, In the City by igno­rant Epheſians, Factious Schiſmaticks, and49 many pratling Diotrephe's. In the Countrey, by Copper-Smith Alexanders, and giddy-brained Athenians, ſtil longing to hear, and tell news, ſucking in all poiſon, and then ſpewing it out to the diſgrace of their Prince. This was Chriſts lot and portion, Iſa. 53. 3. to verſe 12. and certainly (how ever the world deem of it) that ſervant is highly honoured, that is admitted to drink of his Maſters cup. If they have done theſe things to the green tree, what may they not, will they not do to the dry? Luke 23. 31.

4ly, Abners fall was lamented by all Iſ­rael, unleſſe it were by curſed Joab, and his wicked brood, verſe 32. Even ſo our great mans ſubverſion did afford much lamenta­tion in our Rhama, where among the more godly and conſtant godly ones, there was weeping, and mourning and howling for thir Abner, for their Prince, becauſe he was not, Matth. 2. 18. Perhaps there might be ſome greedy of prey might rejoice in his fall, that they might riſe and ſtep into his ſeat; but as Chriſt prayed for his malefa­ctors, ſo pray I, Father forgive them, for they know not what they do, Luke 23. 34. That Crown muſt needs be dear bought, which is purchaſed with blood, and an ill conſci­ence,50 and the loſſe of a ſoul, as Alexander the ſixth ſold his ſoul to the Devil, to ad­vance him to be Pope. The Romans were wont to begin their Epicedies after the death of their Worthies, with Auguſtus mortuus est, the King is dead; the tidings of Auguſtus death made a Land flood over all Rome: And why ſhould not Abijahs ſad ti­dings of Princeps occidit, our Prince is fal­len, turn our Iſrael into Bochim, a valley of tears? Unleſſe we have eyes and will not ſee, and hearts that will not underſtand, the which was one of Pharaoh's plagues, We never had more cauſe to pour out water before the Lord, than this day, 1 Sam. 7. 6.

5ly, Abner falling, Iſh-boſheth preſently fell, with thoſe adherents to them both, 2 Sam. 4. 7. Even ſo, our Prince and great man falling, how many hundred Families that are bread at his Table, and were che­riſhed by our good Abner, were utterly rui­ned? The Peers loſt the honour of their birthright, and ſome of them their lives. The Biſhops, Deans, Arch-Deacons, with the learned Clergy loſt their Livings, and Liberties. The Gentry their Eſtates; and have not all cauſe to cry out, as Eliſha did51 after Elijah, when he was taken up into heaven, 2 Kings 2. 12. My father, my father. What ſhall we do? as the ſervant of the man of God ſaid, Chap. 6. 15.

6ly, Abner ſignifies the fathers Candle; and what he was by name, our Prince was by nature, a bright ſhining light and Can­dle, as it was ſaid of John Baptiſt, John 5. 35. and this Candle being put out, we muſt needs walk in Egyptian darkneſſe, and dark­neſſe is none of the leaſt plagues.

7ly, Abner was gulled of his life under a colour of kindnes, v. 27. Joab pretended love, but intended murther. Mol in ore, verba la­ctis, fel in corde, fraus in factis, he had ho­ney in his mouth, but gall in his heart, he ſpake to him peaceably, but ſtruck him to the heart. Even ſo our Prince was fed with golden promiſes, and Naphthalies goodly words, that they would make him the grea­teſt Prince in Chriſtendom, if he would null Biſhops, Confirm the Parliament du­ring their own pleaſure, Reſign the Militia into their hands, which having obtained, and all they could ask, at laſt cut off his head with his own ſword, as David ſerved Goliah, 1 Sam. 17. 51. And ſo let us pray,

52From the Crafty Counſel of Abithophel,

From Rabſhakeh's railing, & Shimei's curſing,

From Iudas's kiſſe, and Joab's bloody hands, Good Lord deliver us.

From all falſe Doctrine and Hereſie,

From hardneſſe of heart and privy conſpi­racy,

From ſudden death and Jeſuitical cruelty, Good Lord deliver us.


Abſaloms unnatural rebel­lion againſt his father. SERM. II.

2 Sam. 18. 33.And the King was moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept, and as he went, thus he ſaid, O my ſon Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſolom, I would God that I had died for thee, Abſolom my ſonne, my ſonne.

DIC mihi Muſa virnm, Tell me of any man (but the ſon of man) that ever was ſo ſoaked in ſorrows, and ſouſed in tears, as David was; his whole life ſeemed nothing elſe, (from the Cradle to the Grave) but a map of miſerie; the ground on54 which he ſtood, a red ſea of blood, or a wild wilderneſs, full of ſharp briars, and thorns, that pricked and peirced him, which way ſoever he moved; his diet, like Micai­ahs, 1 Kings 22. 27. Bread of affliction; and water of affliction, ſo that he ſaid truly of himſelf, Pſal. 102. 6. I am like a Pellican in the wilderneſs, whoſe nature is to trickle down tears on her bill continually; and in this ſence ſaith Job, Chap. 57. Man is born to ſore travell and trouble, as ſparks flie upward; and this ye ſhall find in the ſurvey of his life. 1. He was a ſhepherd, and he that follows that calling, duram ſervit ſervi­tutem, ſerves an hard Apprentiſhip, as Ja­cob ſpeaks and ſhews, Gen. 31. 40. I was in the day conſumed with heat, and with froſt in the night, and my sleep departed from mine eyes. 2ly. He was deſpiſed by Eliab his eldeſt brother, 1 Sam. 17. 28. 3ly, He was defied by Goliah the Philiſtim, v. 42. 4ly, He was aſſaulted by a lion and a Bear, v 34. 5ly, He was perſecuted by Saul. 6ly, Deſpiſed by Michal his own wife. 7ly, He was betrayed by the Ziphims, chap. 23. 19. 8ly, He was envied by Philiſtims. 9ly, And in a word, to fill up the meaſure of his griefs, his own ſon, his boſome ſon, his Iſaac ſon, his55 darling ſon ſeeks his life and Crown a once; and yet for this bird that would have picked out his eyes, this cuckoe that would have devoured his damme, that bred, and fed, and cockered him, he good man weeps, and in the midſt of his inundation, thus he ſaid, O my ſon Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſalom, I would God that I had died for thee, Abſalom my ſon, my ſon. From whence we learn after his example,

Obſ. 1. To love our enemies, to bleſſe them that curſe us, to do good to them that hate us, and to pray for them which hurt us and perſecute us, Matth. 5. 44. for ſaith Chriſt, v. 46, 47. If we love them which love us, what reward ſhall we have? Do not the Publicans even the ſame? Or if we be friendly to our brethren onely, what ſingular thing do we? Do not even ſinners likewiſe? but to be perfect even as our heavenly father is perfect, but with Steven to render good for evil, Acts 7. 60. but with David to mourn and grieve for the loſſe of a Rebel ſon, Eſt hic labor, hoc opus, praiſe-worthy indeed, as it is, Rom. 13. 3. and Chriſtian-like. I muſt confeſs with Chriſts diſciples, durus est hic ſerm, that this is a hard ſaying, but verus eſt hic ſermo, this is a true ſaying, 1 Tim. 1. 15. for un­leſſe56 we deny our ſelves, and as Abraham was commanded, exire de patria ſua, to go out of his Countrey, Gen 12. 1. ſo we go out of our ſelves, and caſt off fleſh and blood, we cannot go into Chriſt, or ever come where he is.

Obſ. 2. That many are the troubles of the righ­teous, Pſal. 34. 19. As the ſtones that were for Solomons Temple, were ſawen and ſqua­red, and endured many an hard knock, before they were fitted for that place, and their place: even ſo the godly muſt be ſawn with the Saw of Correction, and ſquared with the ax of tribulation, and ſuffer miſerie upon miſerie, before they can become lively ſtones of the ſpiritual buil­ding, whereof Chriſt Jeſus is the head cor­ner ſtone. As the ground is rent under the Plough again, and again, and harrowed, and ſown, and endures many an hard froſt, and cold blaſt, and ſhowers, before the har­veſt cometh: even ſo, this is the condition of Gods Holy Land, to be tilled, and har­rowed, and tumbled about, and water-furrowed, but then comes the Harveſt, and the Wheat is gathered into his Garner, when the chaff is burned with unquencha­ble fire, Mat. 5. 12. Afflictions, as it is ſaid57 of Gad, come by Troop; and as there were many Lepers, and many widows in Iſrael, in the dayes of Elizeus; and as it was a mighty hoſt of the Aramites compaſſed a­bout Samaria, 2 Kings 6. 14. even ſo the righteous, like the man of God, are com­paſſed about with a mighty Hoſt, and Troops, and a multitude of calamities, yet nevertheleſs in all theſe things they are conquerours, through him that loveth them, ſaith Paul, Rom. 8. 37. as if he had ſaid, theſe things come not to make us mour­ners, but conquerors, and the conqueror leaves alwayes the field with honour and triumph, and joy. Many are the troubles of the Righteous; Here is aſharp breakfaſt: but we muſt through many afflictions enter into the Kingdom of God, as Paul and Barnahas taught, Acts 14. 22. there is a de­licious Supper and amends for all. I read of Jovinian the Emperor, that he had two ſorts of Wine in his Palace, the one ſweet, and the other ſowr, but he decreed, that whoſo­ever would taſt of the ſweet, ſhould firſt taſt of the ſowr: Even ſo, Qui vult cum Christo conregnare in Regno Coelorum, debet cum Chriſto compati in valle lachrymarum, he that will reign with Chriſt in the King­dom58 of glory, muſt firſt ſuffer with Chriſt in this vale of tears, he muſt firſt take up his Croſſe, before he ſhall put on a Crown; Firſt drink Vineger, then Wine: he muſt firſt wear a Crown of thorns, and then a Crown of glory: and good reaſon for it; For the Diſciple is not above his Maſter, nor the ſervant greater than his Lord, Mat. 10. 24. But it is enough for the diſciple to be as his Maſter, and the ſervant as his Lord, verſe 25.

Obſ. 3. That although many are the trou­bles of the righteous, yet the Lord is their deli­verer out of them all: He is their City of re­fuge to ſecure them from the hands of the avenger; he is their ſhield and buckler to defend them; he is that brazen ſerpent, unto which if they look and run, will preſerve them. Many are the troubles of the righteous, & they have many as deliverers out of them all; for they that are with them & for thē, are more than they that are againſt them, as the ſervant of the man of God can wit­neſſe, 2 Kings 6. 16. and in the multitude of the ſorrows which they have in their hearts, this is their comfort, Pſal. 119. 50. that God is able to deliver them, as the three children ſaid, Dan. 3. 17. and pitcheth his Life-guard about them, Pſal. 34. 7. 91. 11 :59 So that they may now ſing with the Church, Pſal. 124. If the Lord had not been on our ſide, (may Iſrael now ſay) if the Lord had not been on our ſide when men roſe up againſt us, they had then ſwallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled againſt us. Then the wa­ters had drowned us, and the ſtream had gone over our ſoul, then had the ſwelling waters gone over our ſoul. Praiſed be the Lord which hath not given us as a prey to their teeth. Our ſoul is eſcaped, even as a bird out of the ſnare of the foulers, the ſnare is broken and we are delivered. Our help is in the name of the Lord which hath made heaven and earth. So that as Chriſt asked the adultereſs, Ioh. 8. 10. Where are thine accuſers? and ſhe ſaid, they are gone; even ſo, if any ſhall demand, where are the troubles of the righteous? an­ſwer may be made, they are vaniſhed like miſts at the riſing of the Sun; for the Lord ſcattered them, as he did the Army of the Sy­rians, 2 Kings 7. 6. Many were Iobs affli­ctions, and as ſharp as any, but the Lord delivered him out of them all, and made his comforts at laſt to exceed his ſorrows at firſt, chap. 42. 12. David was a figure of Chriſt, and ſo was hedged about with the Croſſe. For 1. As Chriſt was contemned60 of his Country men, ſo was he of his bre­thren. 2ly. As Chriſt fled into Aegypt to ſave his life: ſo David to Gath to pre­ſerve his. 3ly, As Chriſt was glad to re­ceive food of women: ſo David of Abigail. 4ly, As Herod perſecuted Chriſt: ſo Saul, David. 5ly, As there was a wicked combi­nation of Prieſts, Elders, Scribes, Phari­ſees, Jews, &c. againſt Chriſt: ſo the Phi­liſtims, Ammonites, Edomites and Moa­bites were all againſt David. 6ly, As Iudas one of the twelve Diſciples, and Purſe-bearer to Chriſt, was one of his greateſt enemies: ſo Abſalom his own bowels was againſt Da­vid; but God delivered him out of his hands, and rendred the evil he conceived and plot­ted againſt his father, into his own breaſt and boſom: and for grief thereof David ſob­bed forth this heavy lamentation, O my ſon Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſalom, would God I had died for thee, Abſalom my ſon, my ſon. In the Text conſider theſe 2 parties treated of,

1. Of a moſt indulgent, affectionate, kind, and cockering father, that is, King Da­vid; And the King was moved, &c.

2ly, Of an unnatural, unkind, unduti­ful and ungracious ſon, more cruel than the ſavage Tygre againſt his Sire, and that19 is Abſalom, a King new erected, but is pul­led out of his ſeat before he was fledge, from whence we learn.

Obſ. 1. Soon ripe, ſoon rotten, as we uſe to ſay, Ionah's Gourd ſprang up ſuddenly in a night, and withered the next: even ſo, Iſrael had no ſooner proclaimed Abſalom King, but the men of Iudah mar his pride and depoſe him; and herein is Gods pro­miſe fulfilled, Pſal. 55. 23. The bloody and de­ceitful men ſhall not live out half their dayes, And ſo as Cuſhi ſaid, ver. 32. Let all the ene­mies of the Lord my King, and all that riſe up againſt him be as that young man Abſalom is.

Obſ. 2. The ſin of Patricide, even in the very heart, is a monſtrous, abominable and deteſtable ſin to God and man; for the will ſtands for the deed with God. Fecit quod potuit, as Chriſt of Mary Magde­len, goes for current execution. A Roman being asked, why amongſt all their good Laws, there was none againſt killling of Parents; anſwered, that there was no true Roman ſo unnatural: but in Iſrael, there was an unnatural child ſprung from a good ſtock, that ſeeks his fathers life. He that ſaid, Ecles. 10. 20. Curſe not the King, no, not in thy thought, ſurely commands Abſa­lom,62 and every one, not to imagine the leaſt evil againſt his King, father. We ſay of ſome ungracious ſons, they are ſick of their father; and Abſalom was troubled with the ſame diſeaſe, but fell ſhort of his expecta­tion, the gallows giving him his full re­ward; and for this David wept, &c.

In David let us conſider theſe two general parts.

1. His Paſſion, And the King was moved, and went up to the Chamber over the gate, and wept, and as he went, thus be ſaid, O my ſon Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſolom.

2ly, His compaſſion, Would God I had died for thee, O Abſalom my ſon, my ſon.

In his Paſſion conſider with me theſe particulars.

1. The force and violence of his paſſion; the which ſtruck him like a dart to the very heart, that he remained for the preſent ſenſeleſs and ſpeechleſs, like him that came to the Wedding-Feaſt without a Wedding garment, Matth. 2. 12. And the King was moved: Yea, the Original ſpeaks it much moved; Leves loquuntur curae, ingentes ſtupent, ſaith Seneca, where the waters are ſhallow, there they are rough and murmure, when the deeps are ſmooth and ſilent; the tidings,63 and like Ahijahs heavy tidings to the wife of Ieroboam, 1 Kings 14. 6. of his white boys Abſaloms death, overwhelmed his ſpirit, and amaſed his ſoul, as he ſpeaks, Pſ. 143. 4. that as if he had been ſmitten dumb, like Zacharias, he held his peace, like Aaron, when Nadab and Abiha, his ſonnes, were devoured with fire from the Lord. And the King was much moved.

2ly. His breathing and reviving after his grievous paſſion, as if like Lazarus he had been awakened out of his grave, And he went up to the chamber over the gate and wept; wherein let us obſerve,

1. His motion, And went, &c.

2ly, His action, and wept. In the firſt conſider, 1. Terminum à quo, v. 24. 2ly, Ter­minum ad quem, as here.

1. Whither he went; he went up to the chamber, not to frolick it, not to revel it, not to commit adultery as he had done be­fore; for how ſhould he then make mirth? as it is Ezek. 21. 10. but to faſt, and to weep, and to mourn, which was Gods call to him in that day, as it is Iſa. 22. 12.

2ly, The place where the chamber was, over the gate. The Kings firſt ſeat was below between the two gates, v. 24. a place very64 ſuitable to the condition he was in, and the news he received from Cuſhi: but then when he heard what God had done to him, he mounts upward.

1. Either to make his peace with God, that had thus tried his heart and reins, and ſearched him to the quick, in cutting off his darling Abſalom, as he had cut off Ʋri­ah the beloved husband of Bathſheba. or,

2ly, That as he was a King, ſo he might not diſcover ſo much weakneſs in himſelf, that he who could govern a great people, could not guide and govern his own paſſi­ons. Thus as one ſaid, Difficilius eſt bene regnare quam vincere, It is a harder matter for a man to reign well, than to win all. Even ſo, ſeipſum vincere, for a man to overcome himſelf, and his unbrideled affections, is no eaſie task, although commendable; but how ever, if David cannot ſubdue them, yet he is unwilling the world ſhould take notice of his imbecillity, and therefore went up to the Chamber over the gate, or,

3ly, He was a man of war, and was well acquainted with the bloody event; of war: and ſo as Nehemiah ſpake chap. 6. 11. Should ſuch a man as I flee, even ſo, for ſuch an one as he to be ſeen to melt for an outſide ſcar,65 or wound, would have much blemiſhed and ſtained his honour: and therefore he weeps in ſecret for his Abſolom, as Jeremiah did for the pride, and captivitie of the people, 13. 17. or,

4ly. That the world ſhould not take no­tice of his too too carnal affection towards his dear Son. It is true, he was his joy, the apple of his eye, and he thought him of all the birds of the neſt the faireſt, and the pre­tieſt. Yet in regard of his profeſſion of god­lineſſe, he was unwilling that any ſhould ob­ſerve his Carnality, (as in the beſt grain there lurks ſome chaff) and therefore he takes his Chamber to roar out to himſelf a­lone his ſad grievance. O Abſolom my Son, my Son Abſolom.

2. As we have looked upon his motion, and went, &c. ſo let us caſt an eye upon his acti­on, and wept. If he had wept for the afflicti­ons of Zion, or for his ſins, or that God did hide his face from him, Pſal. 30. 7. this had not been blamable: but for to weep for the loſſe of ſuch a Son, ſuch a Rebel and Tray­tor, and ſuch an unparalleld Caitiff, this is unexcuſable. From whence we learn,

Obſ. 1. The beſt have their failings: for ſaith Solomon, 1 Kin. 8. 46. There is no man that ſin­eth66 not, and the just man falleth ſeven times in a day. And ſo we ought to pity, ſupport, and comfort one another, Knowing whereof we are made, remembring that we are but duſt, as God hath compaſſion on us, Pſal. 103. 13, 14.

Obſ. That the beſt meat may be our poy­ſon, if not well Cooked: weeping is good in its own nature, but adulterous weeping ſpringing from carnalitie is ſtark naught. There are four-fold ſorts of tears, according to the ground on which the ſeed was ſowen.

  • 1. Lacrymae doloris, grief tears.
  • 2ly. Lacrymae compaſſionis, fellow-feeling tears.
  • 3ly. Lacrymae paenitentiae, repenting tears.
  • 4ly. Lacrymae murmurationis, grumbling or murmuring tears. And ſo of theſe in order.

1. Grief tears, are thoſe which we ſhed every one in his private and particular croſs and affliction, when any evil befalls us, as we are never unfurniſhed of occaſions from the Cradle to the Grave. Low grounds are commonly moiſt and waterie. Man that is born of a woman is full of trouble, and miſerie, ſaith Job 14. 1. He comes into the world weeping. He goes forth weeping. He ſows67 in tears, Pſal. 126. 5, 6. and his (Exitus) end is crying, like the Shunamites child. Moſes, in Cunabilis, in his ſwadling Clouts wept, Exo. 2. 6. Iſhmael, in Infantia, in his Childhood wept, Gen. 21. 17. Eſau, in juventute, in his youth wept, Gen. 27. 38. Jacob, in Senectute, wept, 37. 35. that we are little or no time free from mourning. All this ſhews, that as the Sea is alwaies boyling and moving, ſo ſorrow upon ſorrow follows as cloſe at the heels, as one wave purſueth another, and as Jobs ſad Meſſengers traced the other. So that in this reſpect we may ſay with David, Pſal. 8. 4. Quid est homo, what a miſerable crea­ture is man?

2ly. There are fellow-feeling tears, which is a ſympathizing in our Brethrens calami­ties. As Chriſt our head ſuffers when the Members of his body ſuffer: and as it is in the natural body, If one Member ſuffer, all ſuf­fer with it, 1 Cor. 12. 26. As in a throng of people, one treads upon anothers foot, the which cauſeth him to cry out, Cur me calas? why doſt thou tread upon me? The foot was hurt, and not the tongue, and yet the tongue complaineth, by reaſon of that ami­able ſympathie and friend ſhip that is be­tween the Members. Now as it is in the68 myſtical body, and natural body, even ſo ſhould it be in the ſpiritual body, weeping for Joſephs afflictions ſo well as our own. St. Paul, Vas electionis, the choſen Veſſel, did not only by precept, but by pattern teach us our duty in this, 2 Cor. 11. 29. Is any weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not? Brethren, be ye followers of him, and look on them which walk ſo, as ye have them for an enſample, Phil. 3. 17. Chriſt Jeſus did the like, for he appropriated all the miſchief done to the Church, as done to him­ſelf, Acts 9. 4. Saul, Saul, why perſecuteſt thou me? So that if ye will not be followers of Paul, nor of the Saints; Yet be followers of God as dear Children.

3ly. There are repenting tears, which are poured forth for our ſins, and for our own, and other mens puniſhments, and chaſ­tiſements by reaſon of them: for man ſuf­fers for his ſins, Lam. 3. 39. If ſin breaks our head, tears lend us a plaiſter to heal where ſin hath wounded, and the more tears, the ſooner the cure is wrought. Mary Magdalen, Peccatrix, a ſinner, was ſo prodigal of them, that ſhe waſhed Chriſts feet with her tears; her ſins were many, and her tears did cor­reſpond to her ſins, and therefore her Lord69 did forgive her all her ſins, Luke 7. 47. What a ſweet voice was it ſounded in the Palſie mans ears? Mat. 9. 2. Be of good comfort, thy ſins are forgiven thee. And that I might hear the like, (I ſpeak from my ſoul) let Ziba take all; and let me tell you, the readieſt courſe we can take to obtain remiſſion and forgiveneſſe, is to ſwim to God in a flood of tears, as the Ark was carried to mount Ararat upon the waters, where it reſted peaceably, Gen. 8. 4. This was the means which Peter uſed to make his atonement with his maſter, after his lying, and deny­ing, and forſwearing of him, Mat. 26. 75. 〈…〉〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉He wept bitterly, and this courſe the Iſraelites took, when the Text tells us, that they poured out water before the Lord, that is, they wept abundantly for their ſins, they were as free of their tears as of water, their heads were full of water, and their eyes as a fountain of tears; they humbled themſelves very low, that God might receive them into favour again. And this was Davids practiſe, Pſal. 6. 6. I cauſe my bed every night to ſwim, I water my Couch with my tears. And then follows verſ. 8. A­way from me ye workers of Iniquitie: for the Lord hath heard the voice of my weeping. It70 was a ſweet ſaying of one, Never any came to Gods door weeping, that ever went a­way ſorrowing. The Ninevites were a ſinful people, and there was wrath proclamed a­gainſt them, and the execution thereof de­nounced within 40. daies: yet upon their repenting tears, and crying mightily unto God, and turning from their evil waies, God repented of the evil that he had ſaid that he would do unto them, and he did it not, Jon. 3. 8, 10. And to this effect ſpeaks Hie­rome, Oratio deum lenit, ſed lacryma angit: haec ungit, ſed illa pungit. Prayer is of great force and power with God, for what cannot a fervent praying man do? Jam. 5. 16. but when tears accompany, and are joyned with prayer, then what can be denyed to ſuch a melting ſoul? The Canaanitiſh wo­man, Mat. 15. 22. and the Father of him that was poſſeſſed with a dumb Devil, Mark 9. 24. did both by crying, and tears, and cry­ing tears, obtain their long wiſhed for de­ſires, and drew pity, and compaſſion, and a compaſſionate pity from Chriſt. In which reſpect, Auſtin ſaid, Vincunt inviſibilem, & li­gant omnipotentem, they conquer him that is unconquerable, and bind the almighty pow­er of God to yield to our requeſts, as we ſee71 in Jacob, Gen. 32. 28. And ſo ſweetly was it uttered, by a ſweet Divine: Repenting eyes are Cellars of Angels, and penitent tears their choiceſt wine, which the Savour of life perfumes, the taſt of grace ſweetneth, and the pureſt colours of returning innocencie highly beautifieth. And I would God, as David ſpeaks, that our hearts were ſuch a Limbeck, evermore diſtilling ſo pure a Quinteſſence, drawn out from the weeds of our offences, by the fire of Contrition, that Heaven might mourn at the abſence of ſo precious a water, and earth lament the loſs of ſuch fruitfull ſhowers. We have all ſin­ned, and our ſins are many, and great, and a great many, and ſo we ought with Chriſt, Heb. 5. 7. to powr out ſtrong cries, and tears, un­to him that is able to ſave us from death. Every one of us when we come to die, would glad­ly go to Heaven: but if we ſo intend in good earneſt, lacrymae paenitentiae, repenting tears muſt be our guide thither, as the ſtar was to the wiſe men, to bring them to Chriſt, Mat. 2. 9.

4ly. There are grumbling, murmuring, and muttering tears: the which are ſhed in diſcontent, that God ſhould lay this or that evil upon them, or rob them of their Izaak,72 Joſeph, Abſolom, joy, or delight of their heart, or pleaſure of their eyes, and of theſe the Sonnes and daughters of men, are more free than the reſt; but ſaith the Prophet, Iſay 45. 9. Wo to him that ſtriveth with his Maker: ſhall the clay ſay to him that faſhioneth, it, what makest thou? or ſhall man ſay to God, what doſt thou? O peace, peace O murmur­ing ſoul, be whiſt, be ſilent, and murmur not, as ſome of them murmured, leſt thou be deſtroyed of the deſtroyer, 1 Cor. 10. 10. peace, O murmuring ſoul, be dumb, be­cauſe it is the Lord hath done it, Pſal. 39. 9. David had tears of all ſorts. 1. He had grief tears for the loſſe of his darling Abſo­lom. 2ly. He had fellow-feeling tears in his miſery, as knowing that ſo bad a life he li­ved, could have no good end or death, and therefore he wiſheth that he had ſtood in his place, Would God I had died for thee, Abſo­lom, my ſon, my ſon. 3ly. He had repenting tears, being aſſured that his own ſinne, ſo well as his ſons, haſtened him to the grave. 4ly. He had whining, murmuring tears, as may be gathered by his exceſſive impati­ence, and immoderate weeping. And the king was moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept: and as he went, thus he ſaid, O73 my ſon Abſolom, &c. And ſo I paſſe to the next particular in the firſt general point.

3ly. The effect of his paſſion: and as he went, thus he ſaid; wherein let us conſider theſe two particulars,

  • 1. Quod dixit, that he ſaid.
  • 2ly. Quid dixit, what he ſaid.

1. The veſſel of his body was ſo over­charged with grief, that if he had not gi­ven it vent, his heart would have burſt. But his own words beſt ſpeak it, Pſ. 39. 3. Mine heart was hot within me, and while I was mis­ſing, the fire kindled, and I ſpake with my tongue. David was an expert and skilful Muſician, and here he ſheweth it. For, firſt he begins with ſtill Muſick: And the king was moved. Then he ſtrikes a note higher: And he went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept. 3ly. Then he played upon loud Muſick, and loud Cymbals: and as he went, thus he ſaid, O Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſalom, and ſo I am fallen upon the next particular.

2ly. What he ſaid. A man would have thought that David had more cauſe to bleſſe God for his great deliverance from the hands of his enemy, than to whine, and murmur, and weep, and hang down his head like a bull-ruſh: I, but thinks David,74 if he were mine enemy, yet he was, filius meus, my childe, my ſon. But if he were thy ſon, yet he was caſt into a wretched mould, like one of thoſe that the Apoſtle ſpeaks of, 2 Tim. 3. 2, 3, 4, 5. A Lover of himſelf, proud, unthankful, diſobedient to parent, without natural affection, in­temperate, fierce, no lover at all of them which are good, a traitor, heady, high-minded, having a ſhew of godlineſs, but denying the power thereof. I, But ſaith David, love covereth a multitude of faults, for he was filius meus dilectus in quo mihi com­placui, my beloved ſon in whom I was well pleaſed. But if he were thy ſon, and thy beloved ſon, yet why ſhould'ſt thou caſt ſuch a pearl to ſuch a ſwine, and be more prodigal of thy love to him, than to Solo­mon, Adonijah, and the reſt of thy children, better deſerving? I but ſaith David, he was filius iſte meus, the prettieſt man that ever eye beheld, there was none in all Iſrael like him; and therefore I cannot but ſigh, and ſobb, and eccho forth this ſad lamentation for him, O Abſalom, my ſon, my ſon Abſa­lom. From whence we learn,

Obſ. 1. That love is blinde, according to that of the Poet,

Quiſquis amot ranam, ranam putat eſſe Dianam.
Quiſquis amat ſervam, ſervam putat eſſe Miner­vam.
Quiſquis amat luſcam, luſcam putat eſſe venuſtam

David beheld his ſon with the eye of fleſh, and blood, but was blind to look in­to the deformities of his ſoul; his body was not ſo lovely as his ſoul was filthy, and therefore it was a wonder how good David ſhould ſo much forget himſelf, (who was a man after Gods own heart, and knew what God affected moſt, Prov. 23. 26. ) to be tranſported with love to the outward man, not regarding how leprous and diſ­eaſed the inward man was. Surely David for the preſent was not David, and as the Philoſopher told his old Concubine, ſo he might have ſaid of himſelf, Ego non ſum e­go, the which I may interpret by that which is ſaid of the Prodigal in his ranting and ruffling fit and humour, he was not himſelf, Luk. 15. he was as blind as Bartimeus the Beg­ger: neither was this his caſe alone, but Adams; for he and his wife Hevab rejoiced exceedingly in their firſt-born child; but as for their ſecond, they called him Habel,76 which ſignifies vanity, as if he were lightly eſteemed of by them in competition to Cain: but whom they accepted, God rejected, and whom they rejected, God accepted; For God ſeeth not as man ſeeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but God looketh on the heart, 1 Sam. 16. 7. And after the pattern of God himſelf. Parents ſhould love their children for their vertue and godlineſſe, more than for their painted outſide. Samuel was a good man and a Prophet, and he was enamoured with Eliabs feature and ſtature, and good­ly proportion of body, and ſaid, ſurely the Lords anointed is before him, v. 6. but how blind he was in judgement and affection, the Sequel ſheweth. For a father not to love his child, is unnatural; for a father to love his body more than his ſoul, is unchriſtian-like; for a father to over-love him, is not to love him, nor himſelf: for God com­monly croſſeth him in his inordinate love. David, render a reaſon why thou delight­edſt in Abſalom more than in the reſt; wert thou taken with his goodly head of hair? Alas, that is a ſorrie excrement. Wert thou captivated with his fair face? Alas, that the Pox or age quickly defaceth. Wert thou raviſhed with his ſtraight body? Alas,77 every wrinch decrepits it. Wert thou over­come with the luſtre and ſplendor of his eyes, as Chriſt was wounded with one of the eyes of his Spouſe, Cant. 4. 9 ? Alas, they are haughty, and will ſoon wax dim, and ceaſe to look out at their Windows, Eccleſ. 12. 3. Wert thou delighted in his legs? Alas, as God, Pſal. 117. 10. So ſhouldeſt not thou take pleaſure in the legs of a man. Speak David, ſpeak, what was the object of thy love? and if thou canſt give no better rea­ſons than theſe, ſurely, thy love to Abſa­lom was blind. Beware, leſt any of you (with the Aramites) be ſmitten with this blindneſs.

Obſ. 2. Carnal Paſſion breaks all bounds of reaſon, and true Religion. If God queſtion Jonah, chap. 4. 4. Doſt thou well to be angry? he will juſtifie himſelf, and ſtand it out, I do well to be angry to the death, v. 9. Jonah had pity on a Gourd, and yet he quarrels with God for having pity on Nini­veh, and ſhewing mercy to that City, Where­in were ſix ſcore thouſand perſons, that could not diſcern between the right hand and the left. Jo­nah, What was thy Gourd to a great, ſtately, and eminent City? What was thy Gourd to the treaſures in that City? What was thy Gourd to much cattel in that City? What78 was thy Gourd to the men, women and chil­dren in that City? truly but as a ſtraw to the Gold in Ophir. Here then paſſion makes thee to break the bounds of reaſon. ut to take one ſtep and meaſure more. What was thy Gourd to all the ſouls in that Ci­ty? and in having more compaſſion on that, than on them, thou breakeſt the bounds of true Religion. Job was a good man, an upright and juſt man, and as a lillie among thorns, and an apple-tree among the trees of the Foreſt, Cant. 2. 2, 3. yet being ſtric­ken upon the heart-vein, he quarrels with every thing ſtood in his way, and was in his eye, he falls out with his mother that conceived him, the midwife that helped to bring him into the world,