Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v2

BAXTER'S DYING THOUGHTS. 177 O for a clearer, stronger faith, to show me the world that more ex- celleth this, than this excelleth the womb where I was conceived ! Then should I not fear my third birth -day, what pangs soever go before it ; nor be unwilling of my change. The grave, indeed,.is a bed that nature moth abhor, yet there the wearybe at rest. But souls new born have a double nature that is immortal, and go to the place that is agreeable to their nature, even to the region of spirits, and the Legion of holy love. Even passive matter, that hath no other natural motion, hath a natural inclination to uniting, aggregative motion. And God maketh all natures suitable to their proper ends and use. How can it be that a spirit should not in- cline to be with spirits? and souls that have the divine nature in holy love, desire tobe with the God of love ? -Arts, and sciences, and tongues, become not a nature to us ; else theywould not cease at death. But holy love is our new nature, and, therefore, ceas- eth not with this bodily life. And shall accidental love make me desire the company of a frail and mutable friend? And shall not this engrafted, inseparable love make me long to be with Christ? Though the love of God to all his creatures will not prove that they areall immortal, nor oblige them to expect another life, that never had capacity or faculties to expect it; yet his love to such as in nature and grace are made capable of it, doth warrant and oblige them to believe and hope for the full perfection of the work of Jove. Some comfort themselves in the love of St. Peter, as having the keys of heaven. And how many could I name that are now with Christ, who loved me so faithfully on earth, that, were I sure they had the keys and power of heaven, and were not changed in their love, I could put my departing soul into their hands, and die with joy ! And is it not better in the hand of my Redeemer, and the God of love, and Father of spirits? Is any love comparable to his; or any friend so boldly to be trusted? I should take it for ungrateful unkindness in my friend to doubt of my love and trustiness, if I had given him all that he bath, and maintained him constantly by my,kindness: but, O, how odious a thing is sin ! which, by destroying our love to God, doth make us unmeet to believe and sweetly perceive his love; and by making us doubt of the love of God, and lose the pleasant relish of it, loth more increase our difficulty of loving him ! The title that the an- gel gave to Daniel, "A man greatly beloved of God," methinks should be enough to make one joyfully love and trust God, both in life and death. Will almighty love ever hurt me, or forsake me? And have not all saints that title in their degrees? What else sig- nifieth their mark and name, Holiness to the Lord ? What is it but our separation to God, as his peculiar, beloved people ? And how are they separated but by mutual love, and our forsakingall VOL. II.