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fused skill of Bezaleel and Aholiab could prove them Saines; yet,lastly, there may be senlible operations of the Spirit of God upon the soul in the influences of holy motions into the hcart, in working a temporary faith, and some fair progresse in an holy profession, and ship; the world is full of such glow-wormes, that make some fhow of Spiritual Light from God, when they have nothing in them, but cold crudities that can serve for nothing but deceit.

Will ye then see, what leading of the Spirit can evince us to be the Sons and Daughters of God; know then that if we will hope for a comfortable assurance hereof : we mult be efficaciously Icd by his fanétifying Spirit, first in matter of judgment , secondly in our disposicions, and thirdly in our fractise.

For matter of judgment, ye remember what our Saviour faid to his Disciples; when the Spirit of truth is come he will lead you into all Truth, fohn 16. 13. That is into all saving and necessary truches; so as to free us from grosse ignorance, or main crrour : 'Whosoever therefore is enlightned with the true and solid knowledg of all those points of Christian doctrine, which are fequifice for salvation, is in that first regard led by the Spirit ; and in this behalf hach a just title to the son-ħhip of God, as contrarily those that are grofly and obstinately erroneous in their judgment of fundamental truches, lec them pretend to never so much holincffe in heart, or life, shall in vain lay claim to this happy condition of the Sons of God.

For our disposition secondly. If the holy Spirit have wrought our hearts to be right with God in all our affections ; if we do fincerely love and fear him, if we do truely believe in him, receiving him as not our Saviour only, but as our Lord; If our desires be unfained towards him ; If after a meek and penitent self-dejection we can find our selves raised to a lively hope, and firm confidence in that our blessed Redeemer; and shall continue in a constant, and habitual fruition of him, being thus led by the Spirit of God, we may be assured that we are the Sons of God; for flesh and blood cannot be acceffary to these gracious dispositions.

Lastly for our practise, it is a clear word which we hear God say by Ezekiel, I will put my Spirit into the midst of you; and will by it cause you to walk in my statutes, and keep my laws, Ezech. 36. 27. Lo herein is the main crisis of a foul led by the Spirit of God, and adopted to this heavenly son-ship. It is not for us to content our felves to talk

of

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of the lawes of our God; and to make empty and formal profil ons of his name.

Here must be a continued walk in Gods starures; it will not serve the turne for us to stumble upon some acceptable work, to step aside a little into the pathes of godlinesse, and then draw back to the World; no my beloved, this leading of Gods Spirit mult neither be a forced angariation ( as if God would feoffe grace and salvation upon us againit our wills) nor some suddain protrusion to good, nor a meer, actual, momentany, tranfient conduction, for a brunt of holineffe and away, leaving us to the finful wayes of our formet disobedience, and to our wonted compliances with the World, the Devil, and the Flesh ; but must be in a steady, uninterrupted, habicual course of holy obedience ; so as we may sincerely profefie with the man after Gods own heart, My Soul.bath kept tby Testimonies, and I love them exceedingly, Pfal. 119.67. Now then dear Christians lay this to heart leriously and call your felves fadly to this triall: What is the carriage of our lives? Whar obedience do we geild to the whole law of our God? If that be entire, hearty, universal, constant, perseveranr , and truly conscientious, we have whereof to rejoyce; an unfailing ground to passe a confident judgment upon our spiritual estate, to be no lefse then happy. But if we be willingly failing in the unfained desires and indevours of these holy performances, and shall let loose the reins to any known wickednefle; we have no part nor portion in this bleflcd condition : Mark, I befeech you, how fully this is asserted to our hands, in this (faith the beloved Apostle ) the Children of God are manifeft, and the children the Devil; whosoever doth not righteonsnelle is not of God, neither he that loves not his brother, i fob. 3. 10. Observe I pray you what test we are pur to: ye hear him not say who so talks nor holily, or who so professes not godlinesse ; in these an hypocrite may exceed the best Saint; but whosoever doth not righteousnesse: withall see what a clause the Disciple of love superadds to the mention of all Righteousnesse ( neither be that loves not his brother ) surely the Spirit of God is a Loving Spirit, wisdom 1. 6. and St. Paul hath the like phrase, Rom. 15.30. To let paffe then all the other proofes of our guidance by the spirit: Instance bue in this one : Alas my Brethren what is become of that charicable, and christian carriage of men towards one another, which God requires of us and which was wont to be con

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spicuous

{picuous amongst Christian compatriots. Wo is me, instead of that true and hearty love which our Saviour would have the Livery of our Disciple-ship,che badg of our holy profeffion, what do we fee but emulation,envy,& malice, rigid censures, and rancorous heartburnings amongst men > In stead of those neighbourly, and friendly offices which Chriftians were wont lovingly to performe to each ocher, what have we now in the common practise of men, but underminings, oppreffions, violence, cruelty? Can we think that the Spirit of him who would be styled Love it self, would lead us in these rugged, and bloody pathes ? No, no, this alone is too clear a proof how great a stranger the Spirit of God is to the hearts and waies of men ; and how few there are that upon good and firme grounds can plead their right to the son-fhip of God: Alas, alas, if these dispositions and practises may bewray the sons of an holy God, what can men do to prove themselves the children of that hellish Apollion, who was a man-layer from the beginning? For us, my beloved : Oh let us hate and bewaile this common degeneration of Christians; and as we would be, and be acknowledged the sons of God, Let us put on as the eled of God holy and beloved, bowels of mercy, kindnesse, humblenesle of mind, mecknelę, long-Suffering , forbearing one another, forgiving one another, if we bave a quarrell against any; even as Christ forgave us ; and above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfe&nefle, Colos. 3. 12, 13, 14. And lastly, forsaking the mif-guidance of Satan, the World, and our corrupt nature which will lead us down to the chambers of death, and eternal destruction, let us yield up our selves to be led by the holy Spirit of God in all the wayes of righteoufneffe, and holynefle , of piery, justice, charity, and all manner of gracious conversation, that we may thereby approve our selves the sons and daughters of God, and may be feoffed in that blessed inheritance which he hath laid up for all his ; to the poffeffion whereof may he happily bring us who hach dearly bought us, Jesus Christ the righteous: co whom with the Father and the blessed spirit, onc infinite God, be given all praise, hopour, and glory, now and for ever. Amex.

THE

MOURNER

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ECCLESIASTES 3. 4. [There is ] a time to weep, and a time to langh, a time

to mourn , and a time to dance.

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Need not tell you that Solomon was a wise man, his wisdom, as it was in an extraordinary measure put into him by him that is wisdom it self; so was it in a more then ordinary way improved by his diligent observaci

on : his observation was Universal of times, things, persons, actions, evenes : neither did he lock his experiments up in the closer of his own brest ; but by the diretion of Gods Spiric laid them forth to che World in this divine sermon, which, not as a King, but as a Prophet he preach't to all posterity. Every sentence here therefore is a dictate of the holy Gholt ; it is not Solomon then, but a greater then Solomon, even the holy Spirit of the

great

God that tells you there is not a time onely, but a season too, for every thing and for every purpose under Heaven: thac is ( as I hope you can take it no otherwise) for every good thing, or indifferent ; as for evill things or actions, if men find a time, yet sare God allowes no sealon : those are alwayes damnably-unseasonable abuses of times, and of our selves: not to meddle with other particulars : our thoughts are now by the divine providence pitch’t upon, a time to weep, and a time to laugh, s time to mourn, and a time to dance, or rather onely upon the time to weep and mourn, for our time of laughing and dancing is past already : and perhaps we have had too much of that in our former times; which makes the causes and degrees of our now weeping and inourning, as more uncouch, so

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more intensive: we must be so much deeper in our mourning by how much we have been more wild, and wanton in our laughter, and dancing. To fall right down therefore upon our intended dircourse without any previous circumlocucions: There is a threefold time of just mourning. 1. When a man is seosible of his punishments. 2. Of his sins, 3. Of his dangers.

Of his punishments first, or racher which is more general, of his afflictions : for all afflictions are not intended for punishments ; some are fatherly chastisments onely for our good, whereas all punishments are aftličtive ; when we are whip’t then, when we smart with the rod, we have cause to weep, and if in this case we shed no tears it is a sign of a gracelesse heart. It is time therefore to mourn when we are pressed by sufferings, whether from the įmmcdiate hand of God, or mediately by the hands of men ; whecher by private, or publique calamities; are we smitten in our bodies by some painfall and incurable diseases > Doth the pestilence rage in our streers ? Hath God forbidden us the influence of Heaven and curft the Earth with barrennesse ? Hath he broken the staffe of bread, and sent leannesse into our fouls ? Hath he humbled us with the fearfull casualties of fire or water : by wracks at Sea, by lightnings and tempefts by land ? hach he sent murrain amongst our cardle, and destroying vermine into our barnes, and fields ? now God tells us it is a time to mourn ; are we disquieted in our minds by some overmastering pasfons of griefe, for the miscarriages of children, for the secret discontents of dumefticall jars, for unjust calumnies caft upon our good name ? are we molested in our mindes and spiries with imperuous,and no lesse importune then hatefull Temptations? now it is a time to mourn: do we find in our souls a decay, and languishment of grace, a prevalence of those corruptions which we thought abated in us ? Do we find our selves deeply foulfick with our sinfull indispositions ? Shortly, do we find the face of our God for the time withdrawn from us ? Now, now it is a time to mourn.

If we turn our eyes to those evils which are cait upon us by the hands of men : Dimen find themselves despoyled of their eftates, restrained of their Liberties, tortured in their bodies ? Do they find the wofull miseries of an intestine war; killings, burnings, depopulations ? do chey find fire and sword raging in the bolom of

our

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