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Lastly, Those that shall lie for ever under his wrath, will be eternally linning; and therefore muft eternally suffer: not only in respect of divine judicial procedure; but because sin is its own puniihment, in the same manner that holy obedience is its own reward.'
The Doétrine of the Misery of Man's natural State applied. USE (1.) Of information. Is our state by nature a state of wrath? Then,'
1. Surely we are not born innocent. These chains of wrath, which by nature are upon us, speak us to be born criminals, The swaddling bands wherewith infants are bound hand and foot as soon as they are born, may put us in mind of the cords of wrath, with which they are held prisoners, as children of wrath.
2. What desperate madness is it for siuners to go on in their sinful course : What is it but to heap coals of fire on thing own head, and lay more and inore fuel to the fire of wrath, to treasure up unto thy. self wrath against the day of wrath, Rom. ii. 5. Khou mayst perish, when his wrath is kindied but a little, Psal. ii. 12. Why wilt thou increase it yet more: Thou art already bound with such cords of death, as will not easily be loosed: what need is there of more! Stand, careless finner, and consider this.
3. Thou hast no reason to complain, as long as thou art out of hell. Wherefore doth a living man complain? Lam. iii. 39. If one who has forfeited his life, be banithed his native country, and exposed to many hardlhips; he may well bear all patiently, seeing his life is fpared. Do ye murmur, for that ye are under pain of sickness: Nay, bless God ye are not there, where the worm never dieth. Dost thou grudge that thou art not in so good a condition in the world as some of thy neighbours are? Be thankful rather, that ye are not in the case of the damned. Is thy substance gone from thee? Wonder that the fire of God's wrath hath not consumed thyself. Kiss the rod, O finner, and acknowledge mercy: for God punisheth is less than our iniquities deferve, Ezra ix. 13
4. Here is a memorandum, both for poor and rich (1.). The poorest that go from door to door, and hath not one penny left them by their parents, were born to an inheritance. Their first father Adam left them children of wrath; and continuing in their natural state, they cannot miss of it; for this is the portion of a wicked man froin God, and the herijage appointed to him by God, Job xx. 29. An heritage, that will furnith them with an habitation, who have not where to lay their head: they shall be cut into ulter darkness, Matth. xxv.30. for to them is rëferved the blackness of darkness for ever, Jude 13. where their bed shall be sorrow; They. Thall ly down in Jorrow, Ila. l. 11. their food fall be judginent, for God will feed their with judgment, Ezek. xxxiv. 16. and their drink thall be the red wine of God's wrath, the dregs whereof all the wicked of the earih -02
cope, that will furn: they shall be celkeness of darknefit
Shall wring out, and drink them, Pfal. Ixxv. 8. I knoir, that these who are destitute of worldly goods, and withal void of the knowledge and grace of God, who therefore may be called the devil's poor, will be apt to say here, We hope God will make us suffer all our misery in this world, and we shall be happy in the next: as if their miserable outivard condition in time, would secure their happinels in eternity. A gross and fatal mistake! And this is another inheritance they have, viz lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit, Jer. xvi. 19. But the bail Shall sweep away the refuge of lies, Isa. xxviji. 17. Dost chou think, O finner, that God who commands judges on earth, not to respect the perfon of the poor in judgment, Ley. xix. 15. will pervert judgment for thee? Nay, know for certain, that however miserable thou art here, thou shalt be eternally miserable hereafter, if thou liveft and diest in thy natural state. (2.) Many that have enough in the world, have far more than they know of. Thou hadít, (it may be) o unregenerate man, an estate, a good poriion, or a large stock left thee by thy father; thou hast improven it, and the fun of profperity shines upon thee; so that thou canst say with Esau, Gen. xxxiii. 9. I have enough. But know, thou hast more than all that, an inheritance thou dost not consider of: thou art a child of wrath, an heir of hell. That is an heritage which will abide with thee, amidst all the changes in the world; as long as thou continueft in an unre. generale state. When thou shalt leave thy substance to others, this Thall go along with thyself, into another world. It is no wonder a slaughter ox be fed to the full, and is not toiled as others are, Job xxi. 30. The wicked is reserved to the day of diftruction; they shall be brought forth to the day of wrath. We then, Rejoice, let thine heart chear thee; walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the light of thine eyes: live above reproofs and warnings from the word of God; shew thyself a man of a fine fpirit, by casting off all fear of God; mock at, seriousness; live like thyself, a child of wrath, an heir of hell: But know thoil, that fir all these thing, God will bring thee into judgment, Ecclef. xi 9. Allure thyself, thy breaking shall come suddenly, at an instant, Ifa. XXX. 13. Far as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of a fool, Eccl. vii. 6. The fair blaze and great noise they make, is quickly gone; fo ihall thy mirth be. And then that wrath that is now silently sinking into thy soul, shall make a fearful hilling
5. Wo to him, that, like Mob, hath been at ease from his youth, Jer. xlviii. 11. and never saw the black cloud of wrath hanging over his head. There are many who have no changes, therefore they fear not God, Plal. lv. 19. They have lived in a good belief (as they call it) all their days; that is, they never had power to believe an ill report of their fouls,stare. · Many have come by their religion too ealily; and as it came lightly to them, so it-will go from them, when their trial comes. Do ye think men flee from the wrath, in a morning dream? Or will they flee from the wrath, they never uw pursuing thein.
6. Think it not strange if ye fee one in great distress about his foul's condition, who was wont to be as jovial, ånd as lit se concerned about salvation, as any of his neighbours. Can one get a right view of himself, as in a state of wrath, and not be pierced with sorrows, terrors, anxiety? When a weight, quite above one's strength, lies upon him, and he is alone; he can neither itir hand nor foot: but when one coines to lift it off him, he'll struggle to get from under it. Thunder-claps of wrath from the word of God conveyed to the foul by the Spirit of the Lord, will surely keep a man awake. .
Lastly, It is no wonder wrath come upon churches and nations, and upon us in this land, and that infants and children yo unborn smart | under it. Most of the society are yet children of wrath; few are | fleeing froin it, or icking the way to prevent it; but people of all
ranks are helping it on. The Jews rejected Christ; and their children have been smarting under wrath these fixteen hundred years. God grant that the bad entertainment given to Christ and his gospel, by this generation, be not pursued with wrath on the succeeding one.
Use (2) Of Exhortation. And here, :1. I thall drop a word to these who are yet in an unregenerate state. 2 To those that are brought out of it. 3. To all indifferently.
1. To you that are yet in an unregenerate date, I would sound the alarm, and warn you to see to yourselves, while yet there is hope. Oye children of wrath, take no rest in this dismal state ; but flee to Jesus Chriit the only refuge. Haste and inake your escape thither. The state of wrath is too hot a climate for you to live in, Micah ü. 10. Arife ye and depart, for this is not your reft. O finner knowest thou where thou art? Doit thou not see thy danger? The curse has entered into thy foul: wrath is thy covering; the heavens are growing blacker and blacker above thy head: the earth is weary of thee, the pit is opening her mouth for thee; and should the thread of thy life be cut this moment, thou art henceforth past all hopes for ever. Sirs, if we saw you putting a cup of poison to your mouth; we would fly to you and snatch it out of your hands. If we saw (he house on fire about you, while ye were fast asleep in it; we would ru! to you, and drag you out of it. But alas! ye are in ten thousand times greater hazard; yet we can do no inore but tell you your danger; invite, exhort, beu feech, and obteit you, to look to yourselves; and lainent your Itupidity and obstinacy, when we cannot prevail with you to take warning. If there were no hope of your recovery, we should be silent, anel would not torment you before the time : but tho' ye be lost and undone, there'is hope in Ifrael concerning this thing. Wherefore, I cry untoyou in the name of the Lord, and in the words of the prophet, Zech. ix. 12. Turn ye to the firong hold, ye priforers of hope. Fiee to JesusChrist out of this your natural fate.
Motive 1. While ye are in this itate, ye muft itind or fall accord. ing to the law, or covenant of works. if ye understood this arigats, it would strike through your hearis, as a thoufand darts. One had
better be a slave to the Turks, condemned to the galleys, or under Egyptian botage, than be under the covenant of works now. All mankind were brought under it in Adam, as we heard before: and thou in'rhy unregenerate itate, are still where Adnm left thee. It is true, there is another covenant brought in: but what is that to thee, who art vot brought into it? Thou muit needs be under one of the two covenants; either under the law, or under grace. That thou art not under grace, the dominion of sin over thee, manifestly evinceth; therefore thou art under the law, Rom. vi. 14. Do not think God has laid aside the first covenant, Matth. v. 17, 18. Gal. iii. 10. No, he will magnify the law, and make it honourable. It is broken indeed on thy part: but it is absurd to think, that therefore your obligation is dissolved. Nay, thou must stand and fall by it, till thou canst pro.. duce thy discharge from God himself, who is thy party in that cove. nant; and this thou canit not pretend to, seeing thou art not in Christ.
Now, to give you a view of your misery, in this respect, consider these following things, (1.) Hereby ye are bound over to death, in virtue of the threatning of death in that covenant, Gen. ii. 17. The condition being broken, ye fall under the penalty. So it concludes you under wrath. (2.) There is no salvation for you under this covenant, but on a condition impossible to be performed by you. The justice of God must be satisfied for the wrong you have done already. God hath written this truth in characters of the blood of his own Son. Yea, and you must perfectly obey the law for the time to come. So faith the law, Gal. iji. 12. The man that doth them, mall live in them. Come then, O sinner, see if thou canst make a ladder, whereby thou mayst reach the throne of God; stretch forth thine arms, and try, if thou canst fly on the wings of the wind, catch hold of the clouds, and pierce through these visible heavens; and then either climb over, or break through the jasper walls of the city above. These things shalt thou do, as foon as thou shalt reach heaven in thy natural state, or under this covenant. (3.) There is no pardon under this covenant. Pardon is the benefit of another covenant, with which thou hast nothing 'to do, Aets xiii. 9. And by him all that, believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. As for thee, thou art in the hand of a merciless creditor, which will take thee by the throat, saying, Pay what thou owelt; and cast thee into prison, there to remain, till thou haft paid the utmost farthing: unless thou beeft so wife as to get a cautioner in time, who is able to answer for all thy debt, and get up thy discharge. This Jesus Christ alone can do, Thou abidest under this covenant, and pleadest mercy: but what is thy plea founded on? There is not one promise of inercy or pardon in that covenant. Doft thou plead mercy, for mercy's fake? Justice will step in betwixt it and thee; and plead God's covenant threarning, which lie cannot deny. (4.) There's no place for repentance in tliis covenant, so as the funer can be helped by it. For as foon as ever thou finnck, the la:v lays its curse on thee, which is a dead weight
thou canst by no means throw off; no, not tho' thine head were waters, and thine eyes a fountain of tears, to weep day and night for thy fin. That is what the law cannot do, in that it is weak through the flesh, Řom. . viii. 3. Now thou art another profane Esuu, that hath fold the bleshng; and there is no place for repentance tho' thou seekest it carefully with tears, while under that covenant. (5.) There is no accepting of the will for the deed under this covenant, which was not made for good will, but good works. The mistake in this point ruins many. They are not in Christ, but stand under the first covenant; and yet they will plead this privilege. This is just as if one having made a feast for those of his own family, when they sit down at table, another man's servant that has run away from his master, should presumptuously come forward and sit down among them: would not the master of the feaft give such a itranger that check, Friend, how camest thou in hither? And since he is none of his family, command him to be gone quickly. Tho' a master accept the good will of his own child for the deed, can a hired servant expect that privilege? (6.) Ye have nothing 10 do with Christ, while under this covenant. By the law of God a woman cannot be married to two husbands at once : either death or divorce must dissolve the first marriage, ere she can marry another. So we must first be dead to the law, ere we can be married to Christ, Roin. vii. 4. The law is the first husband; Jesus Christ, who raiseth the dead, marries the widow, that was heart-broken, and slain by the first husband. But while the soul is in the house with the first husband, it cannot plead a marriage-relation to Christ; nor the benefits of a marriage.covenant, which is not yet entered into, Gal. v. 4. Christ is become of no effect to you ; whofoever of you are justified by the law, ye are fallen from grace. Peace, pardon, and luch like benefits are all benefits of the covenant of grace. And ye must not think to stand off from Christ, and the marriage-covenant with him, and yet plead these benefits; more than one inan's wife can plead the benefit of a contract of marriage past betwixt another man and his own wife. Laftly, See the bill of exclusion, past in the court of heaven, against all under the covenant of works, Gal. iv. 30. The fon of the hond-woman Shall not be heir. compare ver. 24: Heirs of wrath must not be heirs of glory. Whom the first covenant hath power to exclude out of heaven, the second covenant cannot bring into it.
Obječtion. Then it is impossible for us to be saved. Answer, It is so, while you are in that itate. But if you would be out of that dreadful condition, haften out of that state. If a murderer be under fentence of death, so long as he lives within the kingdom, the laws will reach his life; but if he can make his escape, and get over the sea, into the dominions of another prince, our law cannot reach liim there This is what we would have you to do: flee out of the king. dom of darkness, into the kingdom of God's dear Son; out of the dominion of the law, into the dominion of grace; then all the curses of the law, or covenant of works, shall never be able to reach you..
ele bra Chrift, and ihnet of grace. Anand kuch like h by the
contractenfits; more the marriage. And ye
e the bine part bete znan's Wilat