Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v2

172 BAXTER'S DYING THOUGHTS. Gentiles matter of reproach: but he shineth and reigneth now in glory, above the malice and contempt of sinners. And I shall there live because he liveth ; and in his light I shall have light. He loved me here with a redeeming, regenerating, and preserving love: but there he will love me with a perfecting, glorifying, joy- ful love. I had here some rays of heavenly light: but inter- positions caused eclipses and nights, yea, some long and winter nights: but there I shall dwell in the city of the sun, the city of God, the heavenly Jerusalem, where there is no night, eclipse, or darkness: there are the heavenly hosts, whose holy love, and joyful praises, I would fain be a partaker of! I have here had someof their loving assistance, but to me unseen, being above our fleshly way of converse; but there I shall be with them, of the like nature, in the same orb, and of the same triumphant church and choir! There are perfected souls gathered home to-Christ: not, as here, striving, like Esau and Jacob in the womb ; nor yet as John when he leaped in the womb, because of his mother's joy ; nor as wrangling children, that are hardly kept in the same house in peace : not like the servants of Abraham and Lot, like Paul and Barnabas, like Epiphanius and Chrysostom, -like Luther and Carolostadius, like Ridley and Hooper, or the many striving par- ties now among us ; nor like the disciples striving who should be the greatest: not like Noah's family in a wicked world, or Lot in a wicked city, or Abrahatfi in an idolatrous land; nor like Elijah left alone; nor like those that wandered in sheep-skins and goat- skins, destitute, afflicted, and tormented, hid in dens and caves of the earth : not like Job on the dunghill ; nor like Lazarus at the rich man's door:. not like the African bishops, whose tongues were cut out ; nor like the preachers silenced by Popish imposers ; (in Germany by the interim, or elsewhere';) nor like such as Tze- gedine, Peucer, and many other worthy men, whose maturest age was spent in prisons: not as we poor bewildered sinners, feeling evil, and fearing more, confounded in folly and mad contention, some hating the only way of peace, and others groping for it in the dark, wandering and lost in the clearest light, where the illu- minated can but pity the blind, but cannot make themwilling to be delivered. What is heaven to me, but God? God, who is life, and light, and love, communicating himself to blessed spirits, perfecting them in the reception, possession, and exercise of life, and light, and love, forever. These are not the accidents, but the essence of that God who is heaven and all to me. Should I fear that death which passeth me to infinite, essential life ? Should I fear a darksome passage into a world of perfect light? Should I fear to go to love itself? Think, O my soul, what the sun's quickening light and heat is to this lower, corporeal world? Much