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difficulties, and by what means he doth it, by the word of his own mouth: now this word is brought by the prophet unto Zerubbabel, and by the angel.

(1) By Christ unto the prophet. The angel in the former chapter spake immediately to Joshua ; here mediately, by the prophet Zechariah, unto Zerubbabel.

(2) The first revealer of the counsel of God unto the church, is the angel of the covenant. It was his spirit which spake in the prophets. (1 Pet. i. 11) He, by his spirit, preached in the days of Noah, to the spirits which are now in prison; 1 Pet. iii. 19, 20: for so Andradius ; a learned. Pontifician, as well as Beza and other Protestants, have expounded that place. No man hath seen the Father but by the revelation of the Son.' (John i. 18. Matth. xi. 27) He was the angel that spake unto Moses, (Acts vii. 30, 38) and unto Isaiah. (John xii. 40, 41) He instructed his apostles in things pertaining to the kingdom of God. (Acts i. 3) They must deliver nothing to the church, but what they had first received from him. (1 Cor. xi. 23)

Greatly do they profane the ministry of the word, and betray the trust which Christ hath put upon them as his ambassadors, who preach the vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord; and a woful curse they incur by so high a presumption. (Deut. xviii. 20) The less there is of Christ in a sermon, and of the evidence and demonstration of the Spirit, how full soever it may otherwise be of exotic learning, of heaped allegations, of strains of wit, or luxuriances of fancy and language, it hath so much the less of the power of God to the salvation of the souls of men :-for we are not to preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord. (2 Cor. iv. 5) And as they are the best ministers, who so preach, so they are the best hearers, who savour and relish. nothing so well in a sermon, as the gracious and powerful manifestations of Christ to the conscience, and evidences of the commission which the preacher hath received from him.

2. When the prophet brings no other than the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, it is his duty to hear it. Princes, and magistrates, men of highest place and authority, must receive God's counsel from the mouth of his messengers, and be con

* Defensio fidei Trident. 1. 2.

tented to be directed, comforted, encouraged, by their ministry. David, though himself a prophet, was not without his seers, Gad, Heman, Asaph, Jeduthun, Nathan, to admonish, reprove, comfort him as his condition required. So we find Shemaiah a prophet, sent to reprove Rehoboam; Oded, and Azariah to encourage Asa; Jehu, and Jahaziel, to threaten and comfort Jehoshaphat. We read of the writing of Eliah to Jehoram; of the threatening of Zechariah to Joash; of the prophet Isaiah counselling and rebuking Ahaz, comforting and encouraging Hezekiah; Jeremiah and Ezekiel, denouncing judgement against Zedekiah; Hosea and Amos, against Jeroboam; Jonah sent to the king of Nineveh, and John Baptist to Herod. And though great difference is to be used in the manner of our application to great and to ordinary persons, yet the same fidelity is due unto all. "Cum eadem omnibus debeatur caritas, non eadem omnibus adhibenda medicina," as St. Austin speaks. If a minister must show all meekness to all men, much more must he deliver his message with all reverence and humility, with all awe and tenderness, with all honour and prudence, unto those great persons, whose dignities do as well call for our veneration, as their consciences for our fidelity. We must be so true to their souls, as that we be not rude and uncivil to their persons. Meek and humble preaching, in this case especially, is like a fall of snow, unto which Homer compares the eloquence of Ulysses, which soaks and sinks more kindly than a hasty shower.

And the Lord doth hereby greatly commend the power of his word, and the secret impress and character of his divine majesty stamped upon it, when, from the mouth of mean instruments, he giveth it an efficacy on the hearts of the greatest men, and causeth princes themselves with meekness to receive his counsel from the lips of poor and inconsiderable persons, who have no other authority than the evidence of the spirit of God, and the ministry wherein they stand related unto him, to bear them up, and encourage them in his service. Thus great ships are turned about with a very small helm; and, as some say, stopped in their course with a very little remora." We have this treasure in earthen

• Επεα νιφάδεσσιν ἐοικότα χειμερίησιν, Iliad. γ.

Plin. Hist. Nat. 1. 32. c. 1.

vessels, that the power might be of God, who did not choose the earthquake, or the strong wind, but the still small voice to manifest his presence by. (1 Kings xix. 11, 12)

We have seen the encouragement in building God's house, the means of it, a divine word; the vehicula of that word, Christ the great angel of the covenant delivers it to the prophet, and the prophet as his messenger to Zerubbabel. So then Zerubbabel is the subject animated by this word; and the work whereunto he is animated, is the building of the temple.

1. Then princes and magistrates are to build the house of God, and to take care of the interests of religion, and to see that his truth and worship be advanced in their territories. And although we have no examples hereof in the New Testament, when the empire and the church were divided from one another, yet in the state of the Jews where they were conjoined together, we have examples in most of the good kings, David, Solomon, Asa, Jehoshaphat, Hezekiah, Josiah, how careful they were to purge God's house of pollution, to abolish false worship, to pull down high places, to send priests and Levites to teach the people, to establish true religion, to cause people to enter into covenant with God, to build his house, and order the courses and services thereof. And in like manner the Christian princes, Constantine, Theodosius, Valentinian, and many others, called synods, and made laws to condemn and suppress heretical doctrines, and comforted and encouraged the orthodox bishops and pastors of the church.

1. They are fathers of the people; and therefore must take care of the souls of those, to whom they have so near a relation.

2. They are God's ministers for our good; (Rom. xiii. 4) therefore certainly they must not be careless of our chief good.

3. We are to pray for them, that under them we may lead quiet and peaceable lives, in all godliness and honesty ; (1 Tim. ii. 2) therefore certainly there lies a care upon them, as well of the godliness, as of the peace of their people.

4. He is to have the book of the law before him continu

ally; (Deut. xvii. 18, 19) not only that he may keep it himself, but that he may be careful to make others keep it.

5. He is to be a nursing father to the church. (Isa. xlix. 23) God's people are promised, that they shall suck the breasts of kings. (Isa. lx. 16) Therefore certainly it belongs to their care to see, that the people be provided with the sincere milk of the word; where religion, and the means thereof are wanting, to set it up; where it is, to preserve it; where it is corrupted, to reform, and to restore it. It is one thing, saith St. Austin, for a prince to serve God in his private capacity as a man; this he doth by living faithfully:-another thing to serve him in his public capacity, as a prince; this he doth by a vigorous sanction of laws, requiring righteous, things, and forbidding the contrary.

There is a twofold building of the church: the one doctrinal, and persuasive by the ministry of pastors, and preaching of the word: the other legal, and coercive by the sanction, and constitution, and command of princes; for so they are said to build up the church's wall. (Isa. lx. 10) For the safety of the state being greatly concerned in the welfare and peace of the church; the care of this must needs belong unto them, whose office and duty it is to preserve the other; since without this, the other cannot be preserved. And therefore Aristotle', a heathen philosopher, reckoneth divine worship, as a principal thing, without which a city or civil polity cannot be.

And thus we find Constantine, by his laws, prohibiting heathen sacrifices and idolatry. And when Julian restored them, and Valens allowed the liberty of them, Jovinian and Theodosius did root them out, and remove them again. We find the same Constantine settling Christian religion in his empire, by his royal authority, judging in the causes of Athanasius, and Cæcilianus; the emperor Gratian, granting a commission to eject Arians: Aurelian, casting out Paulus Samosatenus out of the church; Justinian, making special laws in matters of religion. I conclude this with that memorable saying of St. Austin, "In hoc reges Deo serviunt

Aug. Epist. 50.

b Aristot. Polit. 1. 7. c. 8.

e Theodoret. 1. 5. c. 20. Niceph. 1. 12. c. 25. Euseb. de vit. Constant. 1. 2. Aug. Epist. 166. Sozom. 1. 2. c. 27. Theod. 1. 7. c. 2. Euseb. 1. 7. c. 24. Cod. lib. 1. Tit. 1—11. contr. Crescon. Grammat. 1. 3. c. 51.

d Aug.

in quantum reges sunt, si in suo regno bona jubeant, mala prohibeant, non solum quæ pertinent ad humanam societatem, verum etiam quæ ad divinam religionem:" the princes then serve God as princes, when they command good things and forbid evil things, not only appertaining unto human society, but also unto divine religion.

The church of God amongst us, hath, in our late miserable and licentious confusions, suffered great dilapidations in the holy truths, and in the unity and peace thereof. I shall not pollute the solemnity of this day's joy, with giving you in (which is hardly possible) a catalogue of them. Unto you, Right Honourable, and the other orders of the kingdom, it belongeth to be the repairers of our breaches, and the restorers of paths to dwell in. Do this as it ought to be done; and certainly there will be nothing more conducent to the settling of our tranquillity, to the establishing of government, to the re-uniting of the shattered and divided hearts of the people, and to the edification of the church; which it infinitely more concerneth all wise and good men to look after, than any single, domestical, or separated interest. Nor are you without direction in the text for this weighty employment. For,

2. Zerubbabel must not be without the word of the Lord. In the building of God's house, magistrates must wait upon the mouth of God for direction and counsel. It is no less than eight times observed in one chapter, Exod. xl. that in the setting up of the tabernacle and worship of God, Moses 'did every thing as the Lord commanded' Moses; for so he had received his instructions. (Exod. xxv. 9) And in like manner, David gave unto Solomon his son, the pattern of all that he had by the spirit. (1 Chron. xxviii. 11, 12) So runs the apostles' commission from Christ, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.' (Mat. xxviii. 20) Non ex arbitrio Deo serviendum, sed ex imperio,' saith Tertullian. Even heathens would have their superstitious services done by rule; Semper agatne rogat, nec nisi jussus agit.' If men, who may err and mistake in their commands, are offended with such as disobey them,

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e

• Tertul. de præscript. c. 6.

f Vid. Brisson. de formulis, 1. 1.

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