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8. Have not signal mercies, as well as judgements, brought a sting along with them, while conscience has been whispering unto thee, that God was thine enemy.
9. Was ever thy heart truly at rest in these things, so that thou couldst say thou desirest no more ? Nay, but the more of these, the more are they desired.
10. There is another way to come at your purpore. Come to Christ, and he will give you rest. This is a short way, for all is in him ; whatever perfections are scattered up and down amongst the creatures, all is in him, and infinitely more. It is a fure way, for you will not miss happiness if you come to him.
I WOULD once more expoftulate with you. Why do you spend your labour for that which satissieth not? I would beseech you, in the most earnest manner, not only to cease from, to give up with, your prefent unpleasant and unprofitable labour, but also to change your labour ; I would have you, not only to depart from evil, but even to do good; I would call upon you to engage in the service of a new Master, and run in the way of his commandments. You are labouring, you must be labouring, one way or other ; will you not then engage in the labour of true religion, real godliness ? If we must serve, surely it is better to serve Christ than the devil. The labour that there is in religion affrights the world at it; but why should it, feeing their labour is so great while out ofChrist? Consider,
1. We are not calling you from idleness to working, but from labour to labour. And even if we were still to be flaves, better be fo to God than to
the devil. What will men say to Christ at the last day, who will be at pains in their lusts, but be at none in holiness, that will bear a yoke, but not Christ's yoke ?
2. We call you, not from one base labour to another, but from a base to an honourable work. Should one be called from the stone-barrow to be a king's cup-bearer, it were not comparable to what is proposed.--1. They will have a more honourable Master.-2. More honourable fellow-labourers, for the angels serve him.-3. More honourable work, God himself is glorious in holiness.-4. A more honourable office ; from being flaves to the devil, they are made kings and priests unto God.
3. We call upon you from vain labour, to that which shall be prosperous and successful ; you are labouring for happiness there, where you will never get it, but here are full breasts ; you are in vain striking at the flinty rock for water, here is an open fountain, where none ever went away disappointed. .
4. We call you from a barren labour, where you will get nothing but forrow to take away with you, to à labour which, when you have finished your works, will follow you, Rev. xiv. 13. Ah ! miferable is your present labour, Isa. lix, 5. 6. The spider wastes its bowels to spin its web, and when all is done, one stroke of the, befom sweeps all away; it is either killed in its web, or drawn by it as a rope unto death; so that it doth but fpin its winding-sheet, or plait the rope for itself. Consider, " .
5. That the worst which can be made of it is, that religion is hard labour. But this should be no prejudice against it with you, seeing, as has. been said, the labour out of Christ is also hard la. bour. But to cast the balance, observe,
(1.) If it is hard labour, it is worth the pains, the other is not so; for, Prov. ii. fi 5. “ If thou feekest her as silver, and searchest for her as lid treasures, then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God." There is hard labour in digging stones, as well as in digging for gold ; nay, it is hard labour digging disappointments, that which is not ; whereas the gain of the other is precious and certain.-1. The promise, Prov. viii. 21. “ That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance, and I will fill their trea. sures.".- 2. The experience of all the labourers confirm the certainty of it: «I (God) said not unto the feed of Jacub, Seek ye my face in vain."
(2.) If it is hard labour, it is short, if the work be fore, yet it is not longsome. You shall soon rest from your labours: Rev. xiv. 13. He that is tired with his journey, his spirits will revive when near the end. The shadow of the evening makes the labourer work heartily, for loosing-time is at hand. The trials, afflictions, weeping, &c. of the saints, endure but for a moment. On the other hand, the labour of other persons knows no end ; no rest abides them, but an everlasting toil under wrath that never ends. ..
6. We call you from a hard to an easy labour : « My yoke is easy,” Christ has said it, we must believe it. But to clear it, consider for this time only these two things.
(1.) All the difficulties in religion arise from that active corruption which is in men, putting them to labour in theirlusts and in the law: Mat. xi. 1 2. «The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.” Violence and force, not with God, he oppofeth us not, but with our own corruptions. And in this sense only the scripture
holds out the labour of religion to be hard. But men do not state the matter fairly: Lay a tonweight upon a rolling-stone, certainly it is harder to roll both together than the stone alone; but is the stone therefore lighter than the ton-weight? Také them separately, and absolutely, the labour in religion is easy, the other hard. Men cannot bear Chrift's burden. Why? because they still keep on the devil's burden, and they cannot bear the one above the other ; that is not fair. Lay off the one, take up the other ; see which is lightest. A meek and a passionate man, which of them has the hardest talk in bearing an affront? the sober man, or the drunkard? the worldly man, or he that lives above the world? The more power grace has, the more easy; the more power lusts have, the more hard is the labour.
(2.) There is true help in the one, not in the other. The labour in religion has outward helps; the labourers are not helpless, they have a cloud of witnesses gone before them, whom they may fee with their crowns upon their heads, Heb. xii. 1. Ye are not the forlorn in hope. Armies of saints have stormed heaven before, you, and have left it behind them ; that the work is possible, and the reward certain. The other have not this ; if they get fatisfaction in their lusts, they are the first. They fee thousands before them, who have laboured as hard as they, disappointed, and are lain down in for, row.--This labour has inward helps. Christ bears the heaviest part of his own yoke ; he gives strength, he works the will for the work; and the work for us, when we have the will : Phil. ii. 13: « For it is God that worketh in us, both to will and to do of his good pleasure." Isa. xxvi. 12. “ Thou also haft wrought all our works in us." The