Imatges de pÓgina

mals,and I will assemble them into the midft of this City.

And I my felf will fight against you with an out-ftretched band, and with a strong arm, even in anger, and in fury, and in great mrath.

So he told them before in this Prophecy.

I raife up the Chaldæans, a bitter and bafty nation, which shall Hab. 1 6. march through the breadth of the land, to poffeffe the dwelling places that are not theirs.


From whence we have learnt.

That God ordereth this war against his people, which Doetrine we have at large handled in the Prophecy of Obadiah.

We learnt also that God punifheth one evill nation by another, and those whom he employeth in the correction of his enemies, he protecteth and profpereth in their wars, and he is very carefull to pay them wages, as in the fervice of Egypt againft Tyrus, which Nebuchadnezzar did. I bave given him the Ezek.29. Land of Egypt, for the fervice wherewith be ferved against it, be- 20. cause they wrought for me, faith the Lord God

For God can make ufe of wicked men to ferve in his troops, for the punishing of fuch as rebell against him.

Therefore, let no man fay the Turk is an enemy to God and to Religion, he ferveth Mahomet, he is an infidell, and therefore he shall not prevail against us.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Let no man fay, the Pope is a man of Sin, and a mainteiner of Idolatry, an ufurper upon the royall prerogatives of Jefus Chrift:he advanceth himfelf above all that is called God, and is worshipped, hee is an incroacher upon the rights and honours, and power of Princes, and ufurpeth a tranfcendent jurisdiction over them, a mainteiner of treason, and murther of Kings, a Coiner of Articles of Faith, an hider of the Word of God, a maker of counter-laws, against the Law of God: therefore neither he nor his religion fhall ever prevail against the Profeffours of the truth of God.

For if these fins be found in our land, which God conditio, ned again in Indah, that is;


If just judgment be not executed, and righteoufneffe pra



[ocr errors]


Atifed: if the spoiled be not delivered from the hand of the oppreffour: if wrong be done to the stranger, the poor, the Fatherleffe, and the Widow.

Turk and Pope; Papifts, and Infidels; may be gathered together into the troops of God, and employed against us, and prevail against us, for we are no better then fudah, nor deerer to God then his own people.

And if he please to punish Christendome, or the profeffours of his truth by thefe, if once they become Gods troops, they fhall profper and carry all before them.

2 The mifery in the patient : the Land of Ifrael threatned, as you hear in the trees.

Here are named the chief trees for fruit,the fig-tree,the vine, and the olive. Non omnis fert omnia tellus, thefe trees do not grow in all lands, our land though rich and plenteous is no fit foil for these trees.

They ferved for food, and they are of fpeciall note, for in the parable of fotham.


When the trees went to choose them a King,they came first to the olive tree, and faid, reign thou over us, they went next to the fig-tree, and then to the vine.

The Olive faith; fhall I leave my fatneffe, wherewith by me they honour God and man.


The fig-tree faith; should I forfake my sweetnesse and my
good fruit.
The vine faith; fhould I leave my wine which cheareth
God and man.

You fee of how excellent use these fruits were;two of them used in the speciall fervice of God, Oil, and Wine, and often is the Land of Canaan praised for fruitfulneffe, in respect of these trees growing there, which every foil doth not yield: they are all of excellent ufe both for food and medicine, and David faith of Wine, that it maketh glad the heart of man, of Oile, that it maketh him have a cheerfull countenance.

[ocr errors]

The failing of thefe, which the foil did naturally bring forth, doth fhew that God had called in his bleffing, which


he gave to that lan, for the true nature of every foil is the Word of Gods bleffing, which once called in, a fruitfull land is made barren, and a populous countrey is foon turned into a defert.

But this is not all, not onely God will fmite the land in thefe excellent fruits,which are for food, but as Jeremie threatneth, They shall cut down the choice Cedars, and caft them into the Jer.22.7. fire: trees for building.

The reafon whereof we may finde in the first of our parents, Reafon. who no fooner had finned, but God accurfed the earth for their fakes.


So that we may fay as the Church doth in this Pfalme, Was thy wrath against the trees of the land, that thou fmoteft them? not fo, but against the fins and finners of the land.

This further appeareth in the common ground, for it followeth, the fields shall yield no meat.

Bread is the ftaffe of life, God threatneth to break the staffe of bread. So he bad Ezechiel prophecy.

Son of man, I will break the staffe of bread in ferusalem, and Ezek.4.16. they shall eat their bread by weight, and with care.

God hath many ways to perform this judgment, either by taking away his bleffing from the earth, that it shall not bring forth bread for the ufe of man.

Thus he maketh a fruitfull land barren, or he can hold in the early, and the later rain, that it fhall not fall to moisten the earth as in the time of Aggaus the Prophet.

Te looked for much, and lo, it came too little.

The heaven over you is ftaied from dew, and the earth under you is ftaied from her fruit.

Yea, God when he pleaseth can drown the fruits of the earth with too much rain, and destroy the crop, and when he hath fhewed us plenty upon the ground, hee can deceive the hope of the husbandman, and make a thin harvest.

[ocr errors]

When we have gathered in our crop, he can blow upon it, and deftroy it in the barn, he hath his judgments in ftore, rea-' dy to be executed upon finners.

Aaaa 3




We have tafted of this rod, for how did God crown the former year with plenty, and how unthankfully was it entertained of many? what complaint did we hear of the cheap efs of Corn, not able to yield the rackt rents of their ground to the labouring husbandmen, to fatisfie the greedy Landlord.

And God heard from heaven, how heavy his plentifull hand was to many, and he hath fince fhut it up,and turned our plenty into dearth, and now he heareth another cry of the poor their labours wil fcarce give them bread to eat.



Yet another woe: the cattell fail both in the fields and in the ftals, fat and lean beafts; the enemy destroyeth them, and the barrenness of the land affordeth them no food: when God gave man Lordship over all fheep, and Oxen, and over all the beafts of the field; he did not devolve his prerogative dominion upon man, but referved his royall fupremacy over them, and a power of resumption, that if man neglected his fervice, these creatures in their kinds fhould fail him.

You behold in this whole paffage a miferable face of a land with which God is fallen out, the very foil is accurfed for the peoples fakes, the people either perifh by the fword, or go into captivity, or tarrie to ferve the enemy in the land.

The full Cities, the glorious buildings therein, either demolifht and laid even with the ground, or inhabited by ftrangers

You have heard before, what fins have brought thefe evils upon this pleasant land.

Corruption in common converfation, between man and


Corruption in religion and the fervice of God.
Corruption adminiftration of Juftice.

And fo free as our land is from thefe fins, fo far are these judgments off from us.

But if either the prefent times or times to come, are or fhalf be guilty of these heinous fins, I think we may boldly fay, that God is holy now as ever he was, to hate them, and the committers of them, and as wife as ever he was to difcern them,


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

and as just as ever he was to punish them.


- We know that these fins carried Gods people into a ftrange land, where they had not the heart to fing the fongs of the


God beft knows why, but we see a great part of the Proteftant reformed Church, at this time bleeding under the fword, or flying from the hand, or standing upon their guard against the power of ftrong oppofition, and by the mercy of God, we are lookers on, and their fmart is not yet fhared amongst us; but if Canaan were thus fmitten both in the foil, and fruit, and beafts thereof, and moft,in the inhabitants of it.

If our brethren, profeffours, with us of the famé Religion, do in our dayes fuffer fo many vexations, we had need ftudy holineffe of life, and put more fire into our zeal of Religion, and make the ballance of Juftice even, left we drink of the fame cup of bitternesse.


The Jews returned again to their land from their captivity, they had the face of it renewed, they had their Temple rebuilt, Religion re-planted, and then they relapsed to their former fins, and in Chrifts time: Chrift was bound, and Barrabas was fet loose.

And not long after, the Jews went into a difperfion,wherein they have continued almoft, one thousand fix hundred years.

God be mercifull to us, to preferve us from their fins and from their punishments, that our trees may bring forth their bloffoms, and their fruits, in their seasons, that our land may bring forth encrease, that our Oxen may be ftrong to labour, that there be no invasion, no leading into captivity, and no complaining in our streets. Amen, Amen.

[ocr errors][merged small]
« AnteriorContinua »