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take the works of God into regard. O Lord, how
great are thy works and thy thoughts are very deep. Pl.92. s. Abrutish man knoweth wot, neither doth a fool understand this.
It argueth a great defeat in judgement, when we shall think a thought which may derogate any thing from the glory of our God; for it is true, fecit quicquid voluit, he hath done whatever he would ; so it is true omnia bene fecit, he hath done all things well, and we say truly of him, He hath done all things for the best ; for so he doth even then when his ways do crosse ours, and when thoie things that he doth do feem to us and to our reason as moft opposite.
To help which our weaknesse we are taught to pray, fiat volustas tua, thy will be done.
Let us come then to a view of the particulars which the Prophet recounteth, which God doch behold and not yet punish.
And herein we shall find the Prophet an Orator setting forth the iniquity of the times, and the miseries of the Church chen, so as we may fay his heart hath indiced a good matter, and his tongue is the Pen of a ready Writer.
Here be the Prophets grievances. 1. The first is treason, Wherefore lookest thou upon them that deal treacherously? Mr. Calvin renders it, quare aspicis transgrelo fores? and fo doth the Geneva tranflation render it: why lookest thou upon the tranfgreflors?
But that is somewhat too large, for that includeth all sorts of finners.
fun. Cur intuereris perfidos? fo the Chaldæans, of whom the Prophet complaineth, here are set forth as you heard by the Prophet If @y.
Tra izzi Dolus un virtus, guis in hoste requirat? Treason is not wrought by a profest enemy in times of open warre, and proclaimed defiance, neither do we call the secret practices of enemies working underhand by the name of treason, they are military stratagems, but it is called treaton, when by corrupting some of the opposite side, the enemie doch cake advantage.
And this is commonly one of the mines which is carried under the states of great Kingdomes, to destroy them and blow them ap.
And the Author and Finisher of our salvation, though he was alifaulted by profest warre of the chief Priests, Scribes and Pharisees, yet he was put into their hand at last by treason; one of his own twelve betrayed him.
And it is the chief use of the new order of Jesuits in forrein States to corrupt the affections of subjects, at prodant, that they may betray.
This is a great grievance; for treasons be commonly carried with great fecresie; yet the Prophet faith, that God lookech on, be beholdeh all the conveyances both of Proje&tion and Execuci,
and that is it which amazech the Propher, that God who loveth nor creason should look on and behold it in all the ingresse and progreffe of it, and not stop it.
Beloved,we have a lesson from hence.
Not only the great creasons wrought against States and Kinga domes, but the particular falfhoods in common friendship: the private infidiations for the goods, the chasticy, the good name, the life of our neighbours.
It is not any negligence in Gods government of the world or any over-fight, or any forgetfulneffe, or any approbation of evil, chat doth keep God so quiet, that he liccech in heaven, he keepeth Israel, and he neither flumbreth nor sleepech.
Yet he lookethon, while thieves come in the night, and break open a way into mens houses, gather together and rifle, and carry away their goods.
He seech whilst the fecrer enemy watcheth his brother upon the way, or goeih forth with him as Abel did with Cain': God knew that Abel was to be killed that day.
When Joab and Amalamer, God saw it a death, he knew that embracing would prove a stab.
Sometimes God doth detect and defeat thele treasons be. times, sometimes he letteth thein go on to the very moment of execution, yet then he disappointech them : but fometimes he lookesh on, and seech them
performed and hindreth them not, , This is that which the Prophet would fain know why God that loveth no evil
, and hath power at hand to prevent it, doch Look on and see it done;for amongst us, qui non vetar peccare cum
licet jubet: he that when he may, hindreth not a fault,commands it; and for man it is a true rule, that all the evii which we might have hindred and did not, shall be put apon our account.
This rule holds indeed with us, but God is not so limited; he maketh both evil creatures, that is devils and wicked men, to be his tervants to do his will,and he makech the very lins of men rods to scourge both themselves that commit them and others,
2. The second grievance of the Prophet. The wicked devoureththe man that is more righteous then he, and God holdeth his tongue. That is, the Chaldæan who worshipa peth strange gods, devoureth the lews the Posterity of Abraham, who though they be much too blame, yet they are more righteous then Chaldæ ans, and God seeth and faith nothing whilft the Chaldæans doch (poil Israel.
This indeed is a great grievance to behold the afflictions of the Church, and the power of the wicked against them; it was that which put David into an extreme extasie for the time, and till be went to the house of God, and was there taught the end of such men as burt their betters, his foot had well nighslipr.
Our experience showech us much more for the wicked sons of Belial, the moths of our Common-wealth, therust of our peace, how have they fed upon the fat of the land, and by fair pretexts of corimon good, even devoured the Commonwealth, and made more righteous men then they their prey, assaulting their goods, their liberty, and peace of life, disturbing their honest callings with inhoneft encroachments, to the great prejudice of the
? and God held his tongue many years although hefaw it; but now he hach set opet the eyes of the politick body to detect them, and he hath opened the mouth of that body to accuse and to condemn them. 31 thick cée deth from the wicked.
This is wickednelle in a grown degree; for the godly, be the holy ones of God, and God faith, nolite tangere, touch not, they do not only tangere,
angere, yea devorare justiores fé, devour
and the feed of the ferpént; finners cannot abide them that carry any face or shew of Religion, or the worship of God; hating and touching and biting will not serve not satisfie they must de vour and destroy
Salomón iaith, The tender mercies of the wicked are crnell, via fcera crudelia, cruel bowels:
The wicked is ever the devourer;observe it asa fure rele;' that Church or that Common-wealth which devourech and maintaincth flaughter and effusion of blood, is the Synagogue of the wicked.
The true Church is no smiter, no traytor,no plotter, no abeto tor of invasions; it was ever true Arma Ecclefiæ preces eu lachry. ma, the weapons of the Church are prayers and tears. It
The Church of Rome, the mother of murthers, and neft wherein treasons breed, the nurse of Iesuites, the incendiaries of Christendome, the mint of facinerous Machinations, the Cathed dral and dogmatical defenders of the lawfulneffe of any thing that is done for their own good, bach discovered her felf to be Antichristian by this infallible mark of cruelty ; She is a deyourer.
It is the Religion of Rome that armed the Spaniards' against Queen Elizabeth and her land in 88, the blessing of the Pope, and the curse of God was upon that enterprise.
For they came to devoure them that were then more righteous It is the Religion of Rome that digged the vault, that hired, that fraighted the Cellar under the Parliament house to blow up alt; os. sepulchri, the mouth of the grave, os inferni, the mouth of bell; the mouth of Rome shall gape and swallow with the best of them.
Surely this is a great grievance and vexation of spirit here on carth, to see the worst fort of men prevailing, and better then they swallowed ap.
This is also aggravated in the manner of it, which is fully and
double, verf. 14.
2. To creeping things which have no Governour.
In the firft refemblance he inGifteth, ver. 15.
I will sweep it with the befome of destruction saith the Lord of Il. 14.223
That which the Palmer-worm hath left, bath the Locust eaten; Joel 2.4. and that which the Locujt bath left, hath the Canker-Worm eaten; and that which the Canker-worm hath left, the Caterpillar hath eaten. For 'what the Angle leavech , the net cakech; and whac escapeth che net, the drag doth (weep it up. Observe here with me
1. Nore 1. This manner of teaching by familiar resemblances is much used in both Testaments, and it is a smooth and easie kind of teaching, which doch bring things to the understanding by fomç sensible demonstratious.
And may we not juftly charge the Church of Rome wich craély to her children, that when the spirit of God hach fo laboured in both the Testaments to open himself to the understanding of the simple; the Oracle of Trent shall put out the candle, and turn men to seek the way of life darkling, without the light of the Word, which they shall not be suffered to read, for fear of understanding by ic cheir impostures.
It can be no good Religion, wherein they that know the least, and believe the most, are made to believe they are in the best case.
2. I find here that chere is a wifedome of God to be learned out of the natural and moral ways of life; as the storke for naturall affection : the Ant, for Providence : the Spider for industry : the Bee for art, industry and providence,
When we see dogs pursuing an Hare, or a Deer, thus do the projectures of our time hunt the Common-wealth.
When we see Fishermen cast in their nets; thus do the oppres-
A wife and sober judgement may make good use of all that his