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to see a man's ruin lying in houfes and lands, halfband, wife, and children, goods and gear: yet these may be the idols.

(3.) The idol may go under the name of an infirmity. Thus many deceive themselves with entertaining reigning fins under the name of infirmities.

(4.) Self-love acts its part here, being ready to magnify mens good, and extenuate their evil. And fo they nourish their disease, and hug the viper that is gnawing at their bowels.

Laftly, There may be a judicial ftroke in it. They will not entertain the difcoveries which God makes them; and they shutting their eyes, the Lord ftrikes Ethem blind.

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But let us fpecially notice what God has a fpecial eye upon. Secondly, God is specially displeased with our having any other god.

1. He is difpleafed with grofs idolatry. He fhews his fpecial wrath in this life against idolaters, as againft the Ifraelites for worthipping the golden calf, and against the ten tribes for their idolatry at Dan and Bethel. So old Babylon was, and new Babylon will be deftroyed. All idolaters will be punished in the other life, Rev. xxi. 8.

Let us then fhew our difpleasure againft, and refolve in the Lord's ftrength to oppofe the fpreading of idolatry, chufing rather to fuffer than fin.

2. He is difpleafed with the idols which men fet up in their hearts. He fhews this difpleafure feveral ways.

(1.) Sometimes the Lord in the fury of his jealoufy fhovels the idol out of the way, as he did in the cafe of Micah's idol, Judg. xviii. 24.

(2.) Sometimes he reduces the man to a neceflity of parting either with his idol or his profeffion.

(3.) Oft-times the Lord makes the idol mens plague and punishment.

(4) Lastly, Oft-times there is a rub by a torrent of

temptation that brings forth the idol in its own colours; as in the cafe of Judas's covetoufnefs, and Demas's love of the world.

Let us therefore caft away our idols, and let nothing keep God's room in our hearts, especially in fuch a day when God is rifing up to plead against


From the whole ye may fee that the commandment is exceeding broad. Be humbled under the fense of your guilt in the breach of this command. And fee what great need ye have to reform; and what need ye ftand in of the blood of Chrift for removing your guilt, and of his Spirit for cleansing your hearts, and fubduing your iniquities.

Of the fecond Commandment.

EXODUS XX. 4. 5. 6.

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing, that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor ferve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, vifiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the chil dren unto the third and fourth generation of them that bate me; and fhewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.


THE fecond command comes now to be explained; and this is it, though the Papifts will not allow it to be fo. And it is fo plain against them, that they leave it out of their catechifms and books of devotion which they put into the people's hands, joining the reafon of it, For 1 the Lord thy God am a jealous God, &c. unto the firft command; and fo they count the third the fecond, the fourth the third, c. and fplit the tenth into two (to make up the num

ber), though the apoftle expreffes it in one word, Thou shalt not covet. And indeed they have reason to hide it; for if they fhould let it come to the light, it would open the mystery of their iniquity among their blinded people, and fpoil the moft part of their devotions, whereof idols and images have the largest fhare.

As the first command fixeth the object of worship, fo this fixes the means and way of worship. The fcope of it is to bind us to the external worship of God, and that in the way that he himself has inftituted, and that we may be fpiritual in that his worship. We may take it up in two things.

1. The command itself. 2. The reafons annexed. The command itself we have, ver. 4. and part of ver. 5. I fhall firft confider the command.

The command is propofed negatively; and two things are here forbidden exprefsly.

First, The making of images for religious ufe and fervice, Lev. xxvi. 1. And that it is thus meant, and not of civil or political images, is plain from this, that it is a command of the firit table, and fo relates to divine worship. And our God is very particular in this point.

1. Graven images are forbidden particularly, that is, images cut or carved in wood, ftone, or the like, called ftatues. These are particularly expreffed, not only because they were the chief among idolaters, but because they do fo livelily reprefent men, beafts, &c. in all their parts and members, that nothing feems to be wanting in them but life; and fo people are moft ready to be deceived by them. But that wз my fee it is not thefe only that are abominable to our God,

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2.. Every fimilitude whatfoever for religious ufe and fervice is forbidden, whether it be done by cafting in a mould, painting, weaving, or made any way whatfoever, though it be merely by the imagination, and not by the hand; for the words are univerfal, VOL. II.


any likeness. How particular is this command in things themselves whereof idolaters would have the images?

ift, No graven image, nor any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, must be made for religious worship. By the heavens above is meant the air, and all to the ftarry heavens, and the feat of the bleffed. In the vifible heavens are the birds, fun, moon, and stars. No likeness of these is to be made; and therefore to paint the Holy Spirit as a dove is idolatrous. In the feat of the bleffed are God himself, angels, and faints, i. e. the fpirits of juft men made perfect, all invisible; fo that it is impiety, yea and madness, to frame images of them.

2dly, No graven image or likeness of or likeness of any thing that is in the earth beneath is to be made for religious fer vice, whether they be on the furface, or in the bowels of the earth. Now in the earth are men, beafts, trees, plants, the dead bodies of men, &c. No likenefs of thefe is to be made for religious worship.

3dly, No graven image or likeness of any thing that is in the water under the earth is to be made. Now thefe are fishes whatfoever the rivers and feas do produce. But no likeness of thefe is to be made for religious fervice.

But why fo particular? This is defervedly inquired, when the firft command and most of the reft are in fo very few words. Anf. 1. Because the worship of God commanded here is not fo much natural as in the first command, but inftituted; and fo nature's light can be of less service than in the firft: for though the light of nature teacheth that God is to be worshipped, it cannot tell us how he will be worshipped, or in what particular way.

2. Because there is a fpecial proneness in the nature of man to corrupt the worthip and ordinances of Gǝd. Of old the worthip of God was corrupted with vile idolatries and fuperftitions all the world over, but a mong the Jews, and frequently among them too. Ye will often read of the Jews falling in with the wor

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fhip of the nations, but of any nation falling in with theirs never, Jer. ii. 11. And fo is it at this day among the Papifts, yea and other churches, as the church of England, and the Greek churches; and there are few Proteftant churches, where these ordinances are not changed in greater or leffer measure.

3. There is a peculiar bias in corrupt nature to idolatry. It is natural for men to defire to fee what they worship, Rom, i. 23. Exod. xxxii. 1. and to have a pompous worship. There is a natural weaknefs in the corrupt minds of men, whereby they are easily impreffed by idols and images for religious fervice, ready to fancy fomething of divinity in them,

4. There is a peculiar hellifh zeal that accompanies idolatry, to multiply gods, and to be most keen in the worship of them, likeas it is feen in corporal adultery in those who have once proftituted their honour, Jer. 1. 38. If you afk what can put Papifts, being men and not devils, on thofe horrid practices, of which we fpake on the fat day? I anfwer, Their idolatrous religion infpires them with that hellifh fu

*This part of the fubject was delivered Feb. 21. and the difcourfe here referred to was preached on occafion of a congregational faft, on the 17th, 1714, being the last year of Queen Anne's reign. It is well known, that plots were then carrying on by Papifts, Jacobites, and malignants, not without countenance from the then Tory miniftry, to bring a Popih pretender to the throne on the demife of that much-abufed princefs, in place of the late King George I. upon whom the crown had been entailed by act of parliament, as the neareft Proteftant heir; that great numbers of trafficking priests and Jefuits flocked into this kingdom; that Popish meetings were held more openly than formerly; that Prefbyterian minifters were infulted in feveral places, and threatenings of vengeance uttered to be inflicted on firm and stanch Proteftants. At this dangerous feafon, Mr BoSTON, with that freedom and boldness that became a true patriot and an ambaffador of the King of kings, was not filent, but faithfully testified against the abominations and cruelties of Papifts, and the madness and extravagance of Jacobites and malignants, in the afore.

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