« السابقةمتابعة »
and may turn into the occafion of much SER M. religious advantage.
Thirdly, IT is to be confidered, that some of the greatest afflictions and calamities of life, are the effects of God's publick judgments upon the World, for the wickedness and impiety of others. Wherein if virtuous and good men be fometimes involved, it ought to be a fufficient fatisfaction to them to confider, that this is not the proper time for Rewards and Punishments to take place upon particular T perfons. And, fince they know God has referved to another state the final and equitable diftribution of justice according to every man's defert; wherein he will give a perfect Account of all his Matters; wherein every inequality fhall be exactly fet right, and every circumstance of each perfon's cafe be confidered and adjusted; when God will perfectly justify himself in all his Proceedings, and every mouth Shall be stopped before him; why should they be uneafy, that God for the prefent fuffers fecond caufes to take their regular courfe, and does not work perpetual miracles to deliver them from the common
SER M.incidents of human nature, and from the XI. publick misfortunes of the World? 'Tis m recorded of Jofiah King of Judah, (2
Kings xxiii. 25;) that like him was there no King before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, and with all his Soul, and with all his might, neither after him arofe there any like him: Yet the Lord fuffered him to fall by the fword, and turned not from the fierceness of his great Wrath wherewith his anger was kindled against Judah, becaufe of all the Provocations that Manaffeh his Predecessor had provoked him withal; and alfo for the innocent blood that he had shed, which the Lord would not pardon; 2 Kings xxiv. 4. And in a general denunciation of the fevereft wrath of God against Jerufalem, he threatens by the Prophet Ezekiel; ch. xxi. ver. 3; that he would cut off from it the righteous and the wicked. In which cafe, it ought to be a fufficient fatisfaction to truly pious and religious perfons, that God has referved for them their portion in another life.
THESE are Some of the Many confiderations, which ought to oblige us, in all Circumftances of life whatfoever, fully and
and readily to acquiefce in the divine good S E R M. pleasure. There are others yet behind, XI. which are grounds not only of acquiefcence and Submiffion, but even of Thankfulness alfo to God for fending upon us Afflictions greatly to our Advantage: Such as are those which, by the more immediate appointment of God, are intended. and fitted to teach us Humility, to lead us to Repentance, to wean us from an overfond love of the World, to make Tryal and Improvement of our Faith, and to make eminent Examples of Patience and Refignation, Fortitude and Contempt of the World. But thefe I muft refer to another Opportunity.
The End of GOD's afflicting Men.
[A Sermon preached in Lent.]
JOB V. 6, 7.
Although Affliction cometh not forth of the Duft, neither doth Trouble Spring out of the Ground; yet Man is born unto Trouble as the Sparks fly upward.
HAT none of the Afflictions SER M. which befal Mankind, are the XII. Effects either of blind Chance
or of fatal Neceffity; but that they are all under the direction of infinite Wisdom and Goodness governing the World, and in the general