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but now they have both feen and hated, both me and my Father. And to the Cities, wherein most of his mighty Works were~~~ done; Matt. xi. 21; Wo unto thee, Chorazin; Wo unto thee, Bethfaida, For if the mighty Works which were done in you, bad been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in Sackcloth and Afbes: But I fay unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto Heaven, shalt be brought down to Hell; For if the mighty Works which have been done in Thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this Day; But I fay unto you, that it fhall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgement, than for you. And upon the fame Ground it is, that the Apostle in like manner fo highly aggravates the Sin of rejecting the Gofpel; Heb. xii. 25; See that ye refuse not him that speaketh: For if They escaped not, who refufed him that spake on Earth ; much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from Heaven. And ch. ii. 2; If the Word spoken by


SERM. Angels, was stedfaft; and every tranfgref I. fion and difobedience received a juft recompence of reward; How fhall we escape, if we neglect fo great Salvation, which at the firft began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him: God alfo bearing them witness, both with Signs and Wonders, and with divers miracles and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own Will. A careful Confideration of the Sense of these Paffages, will lead us to the true meaning of the like, but more difficult, and feemingly more fevere Expreffions in the Text. For, if the great Aggravation of Sin, be the Knowledge of our Duty; and the Condemnation of the World, be the Light that is come into it; and the Guilt of the Jews was proportionably greater than that of other men, for this reafon, because our Saviour did among them the Works which no other man did elsewhere; and those particular Cities of the Jews, wherein most of our Lord's mighty Works were done, were condemned with a more particularly fevere judgment; and in general, every Sin against the Word Spoken by our Lord



himself from Heaven, and confirmed with SER M. Signs and Wonders, and with divers Miracles and gifts of the Holy Ghoft, can less expect to escape unpunished, than those committed against the Law given by Angels and delivered by Mofes upon Earth: It follows, that if there be Any Sin, more heinous than All others; if there be Any Guilt, which in Event will terminate in final Perdition; if there be any Crime, of which it may beforehand be judged that it will never be expiated; it must be Mens obftinately finning against That Light, a greater and clearer than which, will never be afforded them; it must be mens hardning themselves in fuch a Difpofition, as in the Nature of the Thing cuts off from itself the Means of Recovery; it must be fuch a Corruption and Depravity of Mind, as, like a Mortal and incurable Disease, precludes all Methods of applying a Remedy. And This, it is evident, cannot be any particular Sin, but a general and total Rejection of the only Means of recovering from Sin. The Generation that lived at the Time of the Flood, finned unpardonably; not by any



SER M. of the particular Crimes they were guil ty of; but by rejecting the preaching of Righteous Noah, which was the last Call God vouchfafed them to Repentance: For he refolved, that whofoever blafphemed the preaching of Noah, fhould never be forgiven, but be destroyed by the Flood. The Inhabitants of Sodom finned unpardonably; not by any of their particular Wickedneffes, which yet were extremely heinous; but by refufing to hear Lot's Exhortations to Repentance; who was the laft Monitor God intended to fend them; and he determined judicially, that whofoever blafphemed the preaching of Lot, it fhould never be forgiven him, but he should be destroyed in the Defolation by Fire. The Pharifees in our Saviour's Time, finned likewife unpardonably; not by any of the particular Iniquities, with which they are charged in the Gofpel; (For the whole Defign of our Lord's preaching, was to exhort them to repent of these, that they might be forgiven:) But they finned unpardonably, by opprobriously rejecting our Lord's Invitation to repentance; and by fcornfully


reviling the greatest and the laft Miracles,SER M. which he intended to work in that Place I. amongst them; And therefore, after This, God refolved to leave them to themselves, to live and die in their Sins without further conviction, and never to be forgiven, or to have any New Means of Pardon offered them, either in this World or in the World to come. Verily I fay unto you, All manner of Sin and Blafphemy fhall be forgiven unto men; but the Blafphemy against the Holy Ghost, fhall not be forgiven unto men: And whofoever Speaketh a Word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whofoever speaketh against the Holy Ghoft, it fall not be forgiven him neither in this World neither in the World to come. The Words are the feverest Words in the whole New Teftament; and therefore ought very carefully to be confidered and explained, in their true and proper meaning; that neither melancholy pious perfons may, on the one hand, be terrified with Fears of what they have not the leaft reafon to apply to themselves; nor wilful and incorrigible Sinners, pre


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