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Fifteen CONSIDERATIONS, Stirring us up to the watchfulneſſe of theſe Dangerous Times.

WITH, Fourteen Directions to every Godly Chriſtian, who is deſirous to go out to fight the Lords Battles againſt Antichrist.

ALSO, Thirteen Principles of Religion; By Mr. PERKINS: By way of Queſtion and Anſwer.

Shewing, What neceſſitie there is for all that are for Reformation, and are deſirous to venture life, fortune and eſtate, for Religion, King, Par­liament, laws and liberties; againſt thoſe who (if they prevail) will blot out Religion, and utterly deſtroy us all.

Publiſhed by RICHARD MARSAL Miniſter of Gods Word.

Publiſhed by Authority, and printed with Order.

June 10thLONDON, Printed by Bernard Alſop. 1645.


Thirteen Principles of Religion; taught by Mr. WILLIAM PERKINS, Preacher of Gods Word in Cambridge; (deceaſed) and ſent to his Sonne in Law Iohn Hinde, reſident in London in the Burrough of Southwark.

Q.WHat is your happineſſe?

Anſw.To know God and my ſelf.

Queſt.What is God?

Anſw.A ſpirituall ſubſtance, every way in­finite; goodneſſe it ſelf, creatour and governour of all things: Diſtinguiſhed into the Father, the Sonne, and the Holy Ghoſt.

Q.What art thou by Creation?

Anſw.A creature indued with the image of God, which ſtandeth in righteouſneſſe and true holineſſe.

Q.What art thou by the fall of Adam?

Anſw.A ſinner, and by my ſins I have de­ſerved everlaſting doath, which is the deſtru­ction both of body and ſoul for ever, in the pit of Hell.

2Queſt.VVhat are thy principal ſinnes?

Anſw.Guiltineſſe in Adams firſt offence, and the diſpoſition of my heart to every evill, with the innumerable fruits thereof in thought, ſpéech and action.

Queſt.VVhat is the remedy of theſe ſinnes?

Anſw.JESUS CHRIST the ſonne of God made man, who was crucified upon the croſſe to redéem all mankinde, that was loſt in Adams diſobedience in eating the forbidden fruit.

Queſt.Sinner how doſt thou know that Chriſt was crucified for thee?

Anſw.By faith I beléeve that Chriſt was crucified for me and all believers, and that he was made unto me, wiſedome, juſtification, ſanctification, and redemption.

Queſt.VVhen doth this Faith begin to be bred in thy heart?

Anſw.When I begin to be ſetled in the knowledge of the love and mercies of God in Chriſt, and to hunger and thirſt after Chriſt and his righteouſneſſe, above all the things of this world.

Queſt.VVhat is the means to begin and con­firm this faith?

Anſw.The preaching of the Word of God, reading, reverent receiving the ſacraments, and prayer.

3Queſt.VVhat is a Sacrament?

Anſw.A ſigne to repreſent Chriſt till he come, a ſeal to confirm unto me his death and reſurrection, an inſtrument to exhibite Chriſt with all his benefits, to all believers.

Quest.VVhat is Prayer?

Anſw.A ſpéech to God made in faith, where­in I ask in the Name of Chriſt, things want­ing, and give thanks for bleſsings received.

Q.VVhat oweſt thou to God for thy Re­demption?

Anſw.All thankfulneſſe.

Q.VVherein ſtandeth thankfulneſſe?

Anſw.In new obedience; which is to carry in my heart a conſtant puſpoſe never to ſinne a­ny more, but to endeavour to do the will of God, and that within the compaſſe of my calling.

An Expoſition on Mr. Perkins his Thirteen Principles.

THe high calling that every childe of God is called unto, is not this temporall calling which God hath placed us in, but our Election ſtandeth in obedience to know Gods will, and to know what we are by nature, the children of wrath, and fire-brands of hell, if we labour not to know God, and to be aſſured that Chriſt hath redéemed us from the ſecond death, and that the4 gates of Hell ſhould not prevail againſt us: therefore our true happineſſe is, to labour while we have time, to know our duty to God and man, and to labour to know, that of our ſelves we are loſt in Adams tranſgreſſion, and that Chriſt hath made us frée citizens by his death and reſurrection. For man by nature in himſelf, out of Chriſt, is the unhappieſt of all creatures that God made: therefore in theſe ſad and perilous times, we muſt fit our ſelves for a better life, and whileſt it is to day, har­den not your hearts, but redéem your mis-ſpent time, for the dayes are evill: Broad is the way that leadeth to deſtruction, and many there be that finde it; but narrow is the way that leadeth to everlaſting life, and few there be that finde that ſtrait gate.

Therefore to labour to knw Chriſt crucified that you may be ſealed for the day of redemp­tion,

Firſt, taſte not as Adam taſted in eating the forbidden fruit, for which he loſt Paradice, for in this world Paradice is wonne or loſt: Mans life is ſhort, and fraile, in compariſon but a ſpan long, therefore Chriſt bids us come buy milk without money or price. Gods Word is ſwéeter then the honey or the honey combe: therefore let us taſte the benefit that we have5 by Chriſt, and let us reliſh that by belief, Abra­ham, Iſaack, Jacob, and all the Patriarkes, were juſtified: It wet not Arons beard alone, but drencht his beard throughout, and finally it did rain down his rich attyre. How precious it is and joyfull, for to ſée Brethren to hold together in the love of Chriſt, in the bonds of Vnitie: and he that created us for this thing is God, who hath given us the earneſt of his ſpirit: For he died for all, that they which live ſhould not henceforth live unto themſelves, but unto him; which died for us and roſe again.

Therefore all they that deſire to be in Chriſt, let them deny themſelves, and hunger and thirſt after Him and His righteouſneſſe above all the things in the world: For old things are paſt away, behold all things are become new. Now is the axe laid to the root of the Tree, eve­ry tree that bringeth not forth fruit, ſhall be hewen down and caſt into the fire. Therefore let us deny our own righteouſneſſe, and cry out with Saint Paul; O wretched man that I am, who ſhall deliver me from this body of death?

Therefore theſe thirteen Principles holds forth our happineſſe to know what the eſſence of God is, in creating the world.

Secondly, to know what we are by Adams diſobedience in eating the forbidden fruit,6 the which all Mankinde ſtandeth guilty of (which is our originall ſinne which we brought into this world) till we are grafted and baptiſed into Chriſts ſtock, and made lively members of the ſame.

Thirdly, the mercies of God in Chriſt, that the Séed of the woman ſhould bruiſe the ſerpents head, and pierce his héele. All that by the eye of Faith lay hold upon this promiſe, are juſtified. And in fulneſſe of time, God ſent his onely bgotten ſonne born of the Virgin, which was conceived by the Holy Ghoſt; of whoſe Life, Death, and Reſurrection, his twelve Apoſtles are witneſſes: And to confirm his Death and Reſurrection, the night before he was betrayed, inſtituted (at the eating of his Paſſeovor) the Sacrament as a pledge.

Firſt, in the breaking of Bread, which ſets forth the breaking of his Body.

Secondly, he took the cup, drink ye all of this in remembrance that my Body was broken, and my blood ſhed for you, and for many, for the re­miſſion of ſins.

Chriſts ſufferings upon the croſſe is our glori­fication, which frées us from the ſecond death: Therefore while we have time, let us have re­courſe to God in his Ordinances, for the righ­teous man ſinned ſeven times in a day, Nay7 ſeventy ſeven times in a day: Therefore how much néed have we to renew our covenant with God, and to forſake our ſinnes, and to loath them, and condition with God to become new creatures, that the guilt of ſin may be taken a­way.

For Chriſt preſt upon man, ſo oft as you take this ſacrament, by belief you are healed, and renew your covenant with God to become New creatures. Let us take héed that we put not off this precious time, leſt we be numbred with the Fooliſh Virgins that while they went to buy Oyl, the Wiſe Virgins entred into the Wedding chamber with the Bridegroome: ſo many put off this duty, excuſing themſelves that they are not fitted; that is the Devils po­licie: Firſt, labour to try your ſelves what you are by Nature, then the benefit you have by Chriſt; He bids us, To day if you will hear my voice, harden not your hearts, to morrow is not ours again: Chriſt ſaith, Come unto me, all that are weary and havie laden, and I will eaſe you. Therefore we ought to crave a bleſsing of God bprayer on all our endeavours, whe­ther in our callings, or in our walking abroad, or what ever we take in hand, we ought always to pray to God for his bleſſing, and to deſire his Kingdome to come, and his will to be done. 8For God requires nothing of us but thankful­neſſe, and obedience to walk with him, with a purpoſe of newneſſe of life: Therefore let us beſéech the Lord, in mercy to open our blinde underſtanding, and to guide us in the right way, that the Commandements, the Articles of our Belief, and the Lords Prayer, may be a ſavour of life unto life, and not a ſavour of death unto death.

Therfore let us remember our creatour in the dayes of our youth or adverſitie, before the evill dayes come or the yeares approach, when we ſhall have no joy in them, and to caſt off our ſinnes by repentance. For the Lord hath pro­miſed, he will not leave us nor forſake us, though we ſuffer for a ſeaſon.


Conſiderations exciting to watchfulneſſe againſt Temptations, and motions to ſinne.

  • 1 COnſider the glorious and dreadful Majeſty of that God with whom thou haſt to doe, he is a conſuming fire, his commandments are to be obeyed, his threatnings to be feared, his ſervice not to be ſlighted, but to be perofrmed with watch-fulneſſe and ſeare, &c
  • 2 Conſider thy ſins, that in number exceed the hairs of thy head, in weight and meaſure the ſand of the ſea, the vileneſſe of ſin, the unthankfulneſſe of thy ſin in reſpect of that good God who hath done more for thee then for others.
  • 3 Weigh the fearfull curſes and puniſhments threatned againſt ſin, and miſery of this life, eter­nall inconceivable torments hereafter.
  • 4 Nothing melts the heart like love, ponder therefore the infinite love of God, and the rich grace of Chriſt taking thy ſin upon himſelfe, and bearing the wrath of his Father, which was due to thee.
  • 5 Awaken thy ſoule with meditation of the ſmall number of thoſe that ſhall be ſaved, the mul­titude of thoſe that ſhall periſh, the certainty of their damnation who careleſly deſpiſe, or wilful­ly abuſe the grace of Jeſus Chriſt to carnall ſecu­rity,10 or wilfull continuance in known ſin.
  • 6 Ever call to mind the Divels unwearied ma­lice, violence and ſubtilty, how hee goes up and down like a roaring Lion, ſeeking whom he may de­vour, to whom it is eaſie to become a prey.
  • 7 Know the deſperate corruption that is in thy heart, ready to betray thee to the bafeſt luſt, and moſt abhominable wickedneſſe.
  • 8 What terrors of conſcience, what ſharp and ſtinging ſcourges of outward croſſes, ſickneſſe, pains, poverty, may God inflict to rouſe thee out of thy ſpirituall ſlumber, if other means avail not.
  • 9 How unworthily haſt thou reiected the com­mandment of God, whoſe mercies have been, and are ſo abundant and free towards thee, with pro­miſe of more and larger mercies then for the pre­ſent thou enjoyeſt.
  • 10 What ſnares and temptations thou art every day expoſed to, by occaſions miniſtred from the fleſh within, from the world without, ſometimes from the godly as well as from the wicked.
  • 11 Conſider thy latter end, the ſhortnes of life, how it is ſubiect to a thouſand calamities, and no­thing to be done for God, or thy ſoul, after death.
  • 12 Meditate on the nobleneſſe and excellency of thine immortall ſoul, it is born to a higher im­ployment then the ſervice of a baſe luſt, or of the vaniſhing world, that is not fit to put pibbles in a golden casket.
  • 1113 Often revolve in thy mind the infinite glory of heaven, and that eternall happineſſe there kept in ſtore for them that fight the good fight of ſaith and finiſh their courſe, and keep the faith, and look for the appearing of Jeſus Chriſt.
  • 14 Be every day drowing ſome ſweetnes from the precious promiſes of all ſorts for comforts of this life to them that love God, and forſake any thing for Chriſt, that all things ſhall work toge­ther for good to them, no good thing ſhall bee with-holden from them; and for any thing thou haſt forſaken, thou ſhalt receive even in this world in the midſt of perſecutions, an hundred ſold more, and eternall life in the world to come.
  • 15 Be hold the experience of the ſweet peace of conſcience, and bleſſed contentation, and ſpiritu­all reioycing even in the middeſt of tribulations and perſecutions that is fonud in many of the ſer­vants of God, and withall proteſſe to be certainly attainable by thoſe that watch and pray, and are ſober, and exerciſe that faith and grace which the Lord hath imparted to them.

Chriſtian directions concerning duties in evill times.

  • 1 BE diligent to examine thy ſelfe whether thou art in the ſtate of grace or no, when we are like to be tried, it is wiſdome to doe it be­fore hand.
  • 2 Strive with God to get thine heart weaned from the love of this preſent world; a thing which is but hanged on a pin, is ſoon heaved off: things glued together are hardly ſondred, exceſſive love to the world makes the croſſe ten times heavier.
  • 3 Be much with God in holy duties: when Iu­das plotted againſt our Saviour, he prepared lot the Paſſover, and laſt Supper: let us be moved with reverence to uſe the meanes to have our ſelves and our families ſay to God, Thou art my hiding place, enter into thy cloſet, ſhut the doore to thee, hide thy ſelf with God, untill the indig­nation be over-paſſed.
  • 4 Pray earneſtly that thou mayſt enjoy the fa­vour of God, which is better then life. It is in­tollerable to feare the wrath of God, and to bee deprived of all comforts of the creature at once.
  • 5 Exerciſe thy ſelfe to keep a clear conſcience towards God and man, that if croſſes and trou­bles come to moleſt the outward man, yet thou mayeſt have ſweet peace within.
  • 6 Acquaint thy ſelfe with the pretious pro­miſes: they will bee as ſtrong water to keep13 thee from fainting in the day of tryall.
  • 7 Get into thy heart the experimental know­ledge and love of the truth: you can never ſuffer for that you know not, much leſſe for that you love not.
  • 8 In evill times bee forward to comfort and encourage others: for God hath a book of re­membrance to write their names in, Mal. 3.16. who often meet to commune together of the wayes of God.
  • 9 Set before your eyes the joyes of heaven, as Jeſus Chriſt did, and Moſes, and Paul, 2 Cor. 4.17. and all the Martyrs, who for the name of Chriſt ſuffered tormenting deaths; our momen­tany ſufferings ſhall be recompenced with eter­nall refreſhings.
  • 10 Spare not one ſinne unmortified: for the love of any one ſin will work us more woe then all our enemies, and raiſe doubts and feares in us when others ſhall have comfort.
  • 11 Caſt away all confidence in thy ſelfe, truſt not to any righteouſneſſe or work of thine own; in his own ſtrength ſhall no man prevaile: boaſt not thy ſelfe of any thing in thee, but bee ſtrong in the Lord, and in the power of his might, Eph. 6.10.
  • 12 Take heed unto thy wordr, The prudent ſhall keep ſilence in evill times: It is their wiſdome to know before whom, and what, and to what end they ſpeak.
  • 13 Exerciſe your ſelfe in works of mercy, Caſt thy bread upon the face of the waters, though it ſeem to be loſt for the preſent, yet afterward thou ſhalt find it, Again, Give a portion to ſeven, and al­ſo to eight, becauſe thou knoweſt not what dayes may come, take the preſent ſeaſon to doe good in, the mercifull have the promiſe of mercy.
  • 14 Prepare for a judgement before it come, fore-warned by Gods faithfull watchmen, fore­armed: meditate upon the miſeries which have befaln our neighbour nations, the Sword, famine, peſtilence, devouring thouſands, and what do we know how God will deal with us.

Thoſe who ſlight God and religion in proſpe­rity, take up religion for credit, and will not en­dure ſmall trials, they will not ſuffer the power of Religion to come into their hearts, nor will for religion and the truth, lay down their lives.


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TextFifteen considerations, stirring us up to the watchfulnesse of these dangerous times. With, fourteen directions to every godly Christian, who is desirous to go out to fight the Lords battles against Antichrist. Also, thirteen principles of religion; by Mr. Perkins: by way of question and answer. Shewing, what necessitie there is for all that are for reformation, and are desirous to venture life, fortune and estate, for religion, King, Parliament, laws, liberties; against those who (if they prevail) will blot out religion, and utterly destroy us all. Published by Richard Marsal minister of Gods word. Published by authority, and printed with order.
AuthorMarsal, Richard..
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SeriesEarly English books online.
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Bibliographic informationFifteen considerations, stirring us up to the watchfulnesse of these dangerous times. With, fourteen directions to every godly Christian, who is desirous to go out to fight the Lords battles against Antichrist. Also, thirteen principles of religion; by Mr. Perkins: by way of question and answer. Shewing, what necessitie there is for all that are for reformation, and are desirous to venture life, fortune and estate, for religion, King, Parliament, laws, liberties; against those who (if they prevail) will blot out religion, and utterly destroy us all. Published by Richard Marsal minister of Gods word. Published by authority, and printed with order. Marsal, Richard., Perkins, William, 1558-1602. Thirteen principles of religion.. [2], 13, [1] p. Printed by Bernard Alsop,London :1645.. (Annotation on Thomason copy: "June 10th".) (Reproduction of the original in the British Library.)
  • Christian life -- Early works to 1800.

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