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all to a pitch far above truth; and so he is a liar. He debases himself to please others, turning himself into every shape to humour the party he is to flatter and betrays him into self-conceit and unacquaintednefs with himself.

I shall shut all with a twofold dehortation.

First, Speak truth, and beware of lying. Lying is a very common fin; repent of that guilt, and beware of it for the future. For notives, consider,

Mot. 1. That God is the God of truth, the author and lover of truth, so that he cannot lie. And therefore lying is most contrary to the nature and mind of God; it is therefore singularly abominable and hateful to him, Pfal. x. 6. Prov. vi. 16. 17. We find that God suffered Adam's fons to marry their own lifters, and the Israelites to spoil the Egyptians of what they had borrowed of them; but never did the God of truth at any time dispense with mens speaking lies.

Hate that abominable thing then, which God so hates.

2. All lies are from the devil in a special manner, John viii. 44. "It was he that first broached lies in the world, and ruined mankind with them; and having sped fo well with that engine of hell at first, no wonder he fets himself to keep up the trade. He is the father of lies, that begets them on the false heart, and they are brought forth by the lying tongue. Whom do liars resemble then, the God of truth or the father of lies ?.

3. Lying is a part of the old man of fin, which must be put off, if we would not be put out of God's presence, Eph. iv. 24. 25. It is the way to which our corrupt natures do kindly and quickly incline, Pfal. lviii. 3. The wicked go astray, as soon as they be born, Speaking lies. Hence children are not to learn this, they have the art of it from their first father Adam. But as soon as grace enters the heart, it rectifies it in that point. Hence the Lord's people are called children that will not lie, Il. lxiii. 8. VOL. III.


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4. There is a meanness or baseness in lying beyond what is in other common fins, either because it proceeds from fear, or tends to deceive. Hence liars themselves cannot endure to be called liars ; thie baseness of the sin being so much acknowledged in the world, that though many bring forth and cherish the vile brat, none can endure to be reputed the father of it. And no wonder it is reputed such a base thing ; for when once a man is known to make no conscience of truth, he has lost his credit, and is looked on as a man that cannot be bound with the common ties of society, nor trusted.

Lastly, It will bring God's wrath heavily on the guilty, Prov. xix. 5. 9. A false witness shall not be Prınpunished, and be that speaketh lies shall not escape. A false witness shall not be unpunished; and he that Speaketh lies shall perish. God's truth is impawned for the liar's destruction, even eternal destruction. Shall liars have access to heaven ? No, they are barred out from thence, Rev. xxi. ult. There shall in nowise enter into it any thing that-maketh a lie. Their Jodging is appointed to them in another place with the devil the father of lies, in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, Rev. xxi. 3. & xxii. 15.

I shall give you a few advices.

1. Strike at the root of lying, and so the fruit will wither and come to nought. The great root of all is the corrupt nature, that needs to be mortified by grace from Jesus Christ. There are also particular lufts on which lies depend. Labour to be humble, for pride and self-seeking occasions many lies, as the boafter's lie. Some are founded on covetouinels, as the lies in bargaining ; some in fear, flaviih tear of men, as denying of truth; fome in the vanity and rathness of our natures, whereby lies come to be broached without a formed delign.

2. Accustom yourselves to few words, for in the multitude of words there wanteth not fin, Prov. X. 19.

to years.

It is but just with God, that idle words be punished by suffering people to fall into lying words.

3. Remember that God will discover truth ; and that his eye is upon you at all times. And though ye may deceive others with your lies, ye cannot deceive the omniscicnt God. He is witness to the truth, and will call you to account for your contra, „dicting of it. And indeed the trade of lying is hard to keep up without discovery. Liars had need of good memories. A lying tongue is but for a moment, Prov. xii. 19.

Lasily, Curb lying in young ones, out of pity to their fouls, and care of their credit when they come

For some get luch a habit of it when they are young, that there is no mending of them when they grow old.

Secondly, Beware of carrying an evil tongue. The lying tongue is contrary to truth, the evil tongue to charity and love to our neighbour, being employed in ilandering, backbiting, reproaching, re-o viling, scolding, &c. For motives,

Mot. I, Conlider the woful perverseness that is in an evil tongue. God gave man speech which he denied to other creatures, that by his tongue he might glorify God, and do good to himself and others, Plal. lvii. 2. 10, Shali we thus turn our glory into-lhame, and pervert the ends of speech? How just werc it that we were struck dumb?

2. It is a murdering intrument, I observed to you before, that an ill tongue is a parcel of murdering weapons, a bow and harp arrows to pierce, il sword to fab, and a fireto devour others. Yca, Solo, mon obferves, that death and life are in the power of the tongue, It is a fire that kindles ftrite and contention in all societies, and turns them into confusion; and oft-times returps heavily on the head of those who carry it. The tongues from heaven were cloven, to be the more diffutive of good; but chute

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fired from heil are forked, to be the more impresfive of mischief. 3:

Confider the wickedness of it. It is a world of iniquity, Jam. iii. 6. They have much ado that have an ill tongue to guide, a world of iniquity to guide. It is a broad stream from the fountain of the wickedness of the heart.

4. An unbridled tongue cuts off all pretences to true religion, Jam. i. 26. For where the fear or love of God and our neighbour is in the heart, it will be a bond on the tongue to keep it within the bounds of Christian charity.

5. We must give an account of our words at the day of judgement, Matth. xii. 36. 37.

Lastly, An ill tongue will ruin the foul. Bridle your tongues; however unruly they be, they shall be filent in the grave. And if repentance prevent it not, the day will come that they will be tormented in hell-flames, Luke xvi.

I shall conclude with an advice or two.

1. Begin at the heart, if ye would order your tongues aright. Labour to get them cleansed by the fančtifying Spirit of Chrift. Study love to God and your neighbour, which are the fulfilling of the law. Labour for meekness, and patience, and humility, which will be the belt directors of the tongue,

2. Set yourselves, in the faith of promised aslist: ance, to watch over your hearts and tongues. Unwatchfulness is dangerous in the case of such an unruly member as the tongue is. God has guarded it naturally. Do ye also watch it *.

* Several particulars relating to speaking truth, and truth in the heart, and the evil of lying, &c. may be read with pleasure and profit, in the author's book, lately published, entitled, Distinguish, ing charaeters of true believers, sermors on Psal. xv. 2.

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EXODUS XX. 17. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt

covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his man-fervant, nor bis maid-Servant, nor his ox, nor his, ass, nor any

thing that is thy neighbour's, THE scope of this command is to strike at the

root and first risings of fin in the heart, in the desires going out of their right line of purity and equity. It is a strict boundary set to the unbounded desires of the heart,

In it there are, 1. The act. 2. The object. The act, Thou shalt not covet, or lust, as the apostle terms it, Rom, vii. 7. which implies an inordinateness of degre, a feverish motion of the soul towards the creature, irregular and disorderly; and fo a diffatisfaction with one's present condition, as appears from Heb. xiii. 5. Let your conversation be without covetousness, and be content with such things as ye have.

The object is held fortla particularly for example's cause, thy neighbour's house, thy neighbour's wife, his servants, and goods. Thou shalt not only not take away thy neighbour's house from him by oppression, nor entice away his servants, nor steal his goods, nor entertain a fixed and deliberate desire to do him that injury, as is forbidden in the eighth command; but the inordinate desire of having them shall not rise in, nor go through thy heart, however lightly, if it were like a flying arrow, saying, O, that his house, his servant, his ox and ass were mine! Thou shalt not only not defile his wife, nor deliberately desire to do it, as is forbidden in the seventh commandment; but thou shalt not say in thine heart, O that she were mine! though thou haft no mind, right or wrong, to make her so.

This chject is held forth universally, nor any

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