Imatges de pÓgina
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Shaddai intended but for himself alone, and not another with him :* partly because of his own delights and partly because he would not that the terror of strangers should be upon the town. This place Shaddai made also a garrison of; but he committed the keeping of it only to the men of the town. (f)

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The walls of the town (g) were well built; yea, so fast and firm were they knit and compacted together, that had it not been for the townsmen themselves, they could not have been broken or shaken for ever.

For here lay the excellent wisdom of him that built Mansoul, that the walls could never be broken down nor hurt, by the most mighty adverse potentates, unless the townsmen gave consent thereto.

This famous town of Mansoul had five gates, (h) at which to come out, and at which to go in and these were made likewise answerable to the walls, to wit, impregnable, and such as could never be opened nor forced, but by the will and leave of those within. The names of the gates are these; Ear-gate, Eye-gate, Mouth-gate, Nose-gate, and Feel-gate.

Other things there were that belonged to the town of Mansoul, which, if you adjoin to these, will yet give further demonstration to all, of the glory and strength of the place. It had always a

(f) The powers of the soul. (g) The body. (h) The five senses.

* Man's heart, when in a pure and incorrupt state, was ever adoring and praising its bountiful Creator, extolling and admiring the divine perfections of God, and the wonders of his creation. But alas! how is the pure brightness become dim! how is the fine gold changed! By loving the creature more than the Creator, the heart of man is become deceitful, and desparately wicked, a cage of unclean birds!-Professor, if thy heart be idolatrous, or devoted to the world and thy lusts, thy religion is vain, thou deceivest thine own soul; for God says to all, My son give me thine heart," Prov. xxiii. 26.

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sufficiency of provision within its walls; it had the best, most wholesome, and excellent law that was then extant in the world. There was not a rogue, rascal, or traitorous person then within its walls: they were all true men, and fast joined together; and this you know, is a great matter And to all these, it had always, so long as it had the goodness to keep true to Shaddai, the king, his countenance, his protection, and it was his delight, &c.

Well, upon a time there was one DIABOLUS,† a mighty giant, made an assault upon the famous town of Mansoul, to take it, and make it his own habitation. This giant was king of the Blacks or Negroes, (i) and a most raving prince he was.We will, if you please, first discourse of the original of this Diabolus, and then of his taking of this famous town of Mansoul.

This Diabolus is indeed a great and mighty prince, and yet both poor and beggarly. As to his original, he was at first one of the servants of King Shaddai, by whom he was made, and raised to a most high and mighty place, yea, and was put into such principalities as belonged to the best of his territories and dominions, Isa. xiv. 12. This Diabolus was made son of the morning, and a brave place he had of it; it brought him much glory, and gave him much brightness; an income that might have contented his Luciferian heart, had it not been insatiable, and enlarged as hell itself.

(i) Devils, the fallen Angels.

* That man, as he came from the hands of God, was endued with power sufficient to enable him to remain happy in the divine favour, ought to be universally allowed. This sentiment is most beautifully expressed by Milton, in the Angel Raphael's address to Adam:

"God made thee perfect, not immutable:

And good he made thee; but to persevere,
He left it in thy power; ordain'd thy will
By nature free, not over-rul'd by tate
Inextricable, or strict necessity."

+ The devil; a fallen angel, Satan, the adversary of God and man.

Well, he seeing himself thus exalted to greatness and honour, and raging in his mind for higher state and degree, what doth he begin to think with himself, how he might set up as a lord over all, and have the sole power over Shaddai,* 2 Pet. ii. 4. Jude 6. (Now that did the King reserve for his Son, yea, and he had already bestowed it upon him ;) wherefore he first consults with hims If what had best to be done; and theu breaks his mind to some others of his companions, to which they also agreed. So, in fine, they came to this issue, that they should make an attempt upon the King's Son, to destroy him, that the inheritance might be theirs. Well, to be short, the treason, as I said, was concluded, the time appointed, the word given, the rebels rendezvoused, and the assault attempted.†

Thus envy and malice excited rebellion in the angels, and cast them down from heaven: each said in his heart, "I will ascend into heaven, I will esalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit upon the mount of the congregation in the sides of the north. I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH," Isa. xiv. 13. 14 But their design being no sooner forined than discovered by the all-piercing eye of God, they were immediately punished for their horrid conspiracy with everlasting banishment from heaven and happiness.-Well had it been for the human race, if the evil had stopped here; but alas! the same rebellious spirit, that shut the angels out of heaven, keeps the bulk of fallen man from it: they will not have THIS MAN to reign over them, Luke xix. 14; they reject the God-man Jesus; renounce the salvation of God's own gracious appointment; and after a life of sin, flatter themselves in vain, delusive hopes of future happiness, by a blind reliance on the mercy of an absolute God, who to all such will be a consuming fire: while others oppose their own righteousness to, or endeavour to join it with the righteousness of Christ, for their justification and acceptance at God's bar.

+ This rebellion seems to be clearly pointed out in Rev. xii. 7-9, "And there was war iheaven: Michael and his angels, fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent called the devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him." Sinners, reject not Christ, lest ye fall into the same con. demnation: but rather "kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and so ye perish from the right way," Ps. ii. ult.

Now the King and his Son, being all and always eye, could not but discern all passages in his dominions and he having always a love for his Son as for himself, could not, at what he saw, but be greatly provoked and offended; wherefore what does he, but takes them in the very nick, and first trip that they made towards their design, convicts them of the treason, horrid rebellion, and conspiracy that they had devised, and now attempted to put into practice, and casts them altogether out of all places of trust, benefit, honour, and preferment this done, he banishes them the court, turns them down into horrid pits: never more to expect the least favour from his hands, but to abide the judgment that he had appointed, and that for ever and ever.

Now they being thus cast out of all place of trust, profit, and honour, and also knowing that they had lost their Prince's favour for ever, being banished his court, and cast down to the horrible pits, you may be sure they would now add to their former pride what malice and rage against Shaddai, and against his Son, they could. 1. Pet. v. 8. Wherefore, roving and ranging in much fury from place to place (if perhaps they might find something that was the King's) to revenge themselves on him, by spoiling that; at last they happened into this spacious country of Universe, and steered their course towards the town of Mausoul; and considering that that town was one of the chief works and delights of King Shaddai; what do they, but, after counsel taken make an assault upon that. I say, they knew that Mansoul belonged unto Shaddai: for they were there when he built and beautified it for himself*. So when they had

* Both the rebel angels and also the elect ones, were present at that glorious display of the wisdom and goodness of God, the formation of man in the divine image; for we read, Job xxxvii. 7, that when the work of creation was completed and

found the place, they shouted horribly for joy, and roared on it like as a lion on its prey; saying, Now we have found the prize, and how to be avenged on King Shaddai for what he hath done to us. So they sat down, and called a council of war; and considered with themselves, what ways and methods they had best engage in, for the winning to themselves this famous town of Mansoul; and these four things were then propounded to be considered .of.

First, Whether they had best all of them to shew themselves in this design to Mansoul?

Secondly, Whether they had best to go on and sit down against Mansoul, in their now ragged and beggarly disguise?

Thirdly, Whether they had best shew to Mansoul their intentions, and what design they came about; or, whether to assault it with words and ways of deceit ?

Fourthly, Whether they had not best give out private orders, to some of their companions, to take the advantage, if they see one or more of the principal townsmen, to shoot them; if thereby they shall judge their cause and design will the better be promoted,

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It was answered, to the first of these proposals, in the negative; to wit, that it would not be best that all should shew themselves before the town, because the appearance of many of them might alarm and frighten the town; whereas a few, or but one of them was not so likely to do it. And to cause this advice to take place, it was added further, that if Mansoul was frightened, or did take the alarm, it is impossible, said Diabolus

that accomplished creature man was produced, "the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy." The soul of man is still as dear as ever in the sight of God; for our Lord tells us, Luke xv. 10, "There is joy in the presence of the angels of God, over one sinner that repenteth."

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