Imatges de pÓgina
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Heathens were wholly Idolaters, and did not worfhip the true God, yet had they ftill fome Gods or other whom they all worshipped: Till which Time, though there were feveral Fools [Pfalm xiv. 1.] that faid in their Hearts, or wifhed and hoped there was no God to punish them; yet were they wifer than to affirm directly, that there was no God, whereas, it is not many Years ago, that a Member of that Univerfity had directly affirm'd, that there was no God. Nay, when they were to procure a Majority of Heads of Colleges to banish him, for his direct Atheism, and the Proof was undeniable, the Head of that College to which he belonged, who is ftill one of thofe Heads, and in a much higher Poft in the fame Place alfo, would not appear against him; but the other Heads were forced to adjourn to Trinity-College Lodge, for Dr. Bentley's Affiftance, who, after difcourfing with him, joined with them in his Banifhment. This Atbeifm I efteem a greater Crime than the Idolatry of the firft Commandment, or greater than Heatben Idolatry itself...

Second Command. [Exod. xx. 4, 5, 6. Deut. v. 8, 9, 10.] Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven Image, or any Likeness 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 thyfelf to them, nor ferve them: For I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, vifiting the Iniquity of the Fathers upon the Children, unto the third and fourth Generation of them that hate me; and shewing Mercy unto Thousands of them that love me, and keep my Commandments. This Command is not broken by either Jews, or Proteftants, or Mahomet,




ans; but chiefly, if not only, among us by the Papifts, to their utter Difgrace and Condemnation. Accordingly, we have seen already that our Saviour, by St. John in the Revelation, complains, that this Anti-chriftian Church of Rome, even after the fore Judgments of the fix former Trumpets, fent to bring them to Repentance, [Apoc. ix. 20.] did not repent of fuch their former grofs Idolatry, of the Works of their Hands; that they should not worship Dæmons, and Idols of Gold, and Silver, and Brass, and Stone, and Wood, which neither can see, nor bear, nor walk.

Third and Ninth Commands. [Exod. xx. 7, 16. Deut. v. 11, 20.] Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain: For the Lord will not bold him guiltless that taketh his Name in vain. Thou fhalt not bear falfe Witness against thy Neighbour. How grofly the Proteftants, no less than Papists, are guilty of these most horrid Crimes, of taking the tremendous Name of God in vain, and in bearing falfe Witness, fee Mr. Overal's Paper, already produced, Pag. 411–414.

Fourth Command. [Exod. xx. 8, 9, 10, 11. Deut. v. 12, 13, 14, 15.] Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it holy, Six Days fhalt thou labour, and do all thy Work: But the feventh Day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. In it thou shalt not do any Work; thou, nor thy Son, nor thy Daughter; thy Man-fervant, nor thy Maid-servant; nor thy Cattle, nor the Stranger that is within thy Gates. For in fix Days the Lord made Heaven and Earth, the Sea, and all that in them is, and refted the Seventh Day: Wherefore the Lord bleed the Sabbath Day, and ballowed it,


This Command, tho' it belongs to no other Day of the Week than Saturday, and according to the Christian Interpretation, [Conftitut. ii. 36.] is to afford us Chriftians so much Reft from our worldly Labours, as the Commemoration and Worship of God as our Creator requires; (though by no Means fo much Reft on the Sabbath as the Jews were obliged to by their Law, much less as the rigid Interpretation of the Jewish Rabbins required; nor indeed fo much as the longer and more folemn Duties of the Lord's Day, in Memory of the ReJurrection of Chrift, our Redeemer make neceffary.) However, because the Ignorance, the grofs Igno. rance of the modern Ages has almoft obliterated the Sanctification of Saturday, or the Sabbath Day'; nay, has introduced, without all good Authority, fuch an Interpretation of this Fourth Command, as if the Lord's Day was to be the Chriftian Sabbath; and as if the Command now belonged, by a Change of the Day, to the first Day of the Week instead of the laft; I fay, because of this grofs Ignorance of the Moderns in this Matter, gone into by many good Chriftians through Inadvertency, rather than any Contempt of a known Law, I cannot charge the Body of Chriftian People with the grofs Breach of this Command, as one of thofe great Crimes for which the Judgments of God are already upon us, and greater still are to be feared by us on that Account. Yet, as I have long known the Obfervation of the Sabbath, or Saturday, in Memory of the Creation, to be a Chriftian Duty, I have endeavoured, in fome Measure, to observe it all along

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in my own Family. Accordingly, a Thanksgiving to God as our Creator is fet down in my own Common-Prayer Book, and has not been there omitted about 40 Years; as the fame, or fomewhat like it, ought to be introduced into all other Chriftian Congregations and Families alfo, as they confist of People that are all the Creatures of God, as well as the Jews, and ought all equally with them to acknowledge Almighty God to be our as well as their common Creator and Governor. What is here faid in Way of just Excufe for the Non-observation of the Sabbath, or Saturday, may equally be applied to the Stations, or Half-fafts, on Wednesday and Friday, excepting the feven or eight Weeks of Pentecoft, and the Apoftolical Holidays, with the old five Days of Lent, and the more ftrict and folemn Fafting and Abftinence of Paffion-Week; all which, I believe, do oblige all Chriftians equally with that of the Lord's Day itself; and were accordingly obferved by the Primitive Chriftians, and have in good Measure been obferved in my Family about 40 Years; fince this Obligation has been little known in these Western Countries, and in these later Anti-christian Ages. But then, as to the common Neglect of Divine Worship, and the horrible Profanation of the Lord's Day among us, which all own for a Day of Holiness, the Reader may look backward to Pag. 94, where Bifhop Sherlock is mentioned as justly and greatly complaining of this, among the other Instances of the groffeft Irreligion and Profaneness among us: To which I am obliged to add two other moft pub

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lick Examples of fuch Irreligion and Profaneness: The one is, of thofe very bad Men that profane this holy Day in London, by frequenting, and encouraging, and fupporting Mr. Henley's weekly Buffoonry, and Ridicule of all that is facred among Chriftians, on the Evening of that Day. The other belongs to one of the Royal Family itself, which ought to fet us a better Pattern. The Example is this: One of the Daughters of the Earl of Huntingdon was recommended to be a Maid of Honour to one of our Princeffes, and was accepted of; but only on this Condition, that she muft comply with the Princefs in playing at Cards on the Lord's Day: But her Mother, who did not approve of fuch a Profanation of that holy Day, having forbidden her Daughter to game upon it; and the Daughter having accordingly promifed not to game, fhe was rejected on that Account. This Story is fo well known, and I have fuch undoubted Authority for it, that though it concerns the Royal Family itfelf, which I have already, in great Measure, excepted from fuch Reflections, for particular Reafons, Pag. 632, priùs, I could not perfuade myself to omit it in this Place. Moreover, fince I had the Honour many Years ago to join in the Inftruction of the Duke of Cumberland; (one who, when very young, was made instrumental by Providence to put an End to that Rebellion in Scotland, which none of the old Commanders were able to do ;) I fhall venture to add two Claufes relating to him, which I wrote in two feveral Letters to my very valuable Friend, and his former Governor,

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