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22

Ehe

LIFE

of

the

LIB.

I:

Difficulty

in the Incarnation, the

Perfon

of

Chrift,

his

Undertaking

and

Perform-

ance

with the Scripture Chronology, Hiftories and

Stile,

which

had flailed

and overwhelmedme,

if

God

had

not

been my

lrength.

And

here

I

faw

much

of

the

Mercy

of

God,

that

he let

not out

thefe terrible and dangerous

Temptations

upon me,

while

I

was weak

and in the infancy

of

my Faith

;

for then

I

had

ne-

ver

been able

to withftand them.

But

Faith

is

like a

Tree

,

whofe

Top

is

fmall

while

the Root

is

young and

(hallow

:

and therefore

as

then

it

bath but

final

root-

ing, fo

is

it not

liable

to the

fhaking

Winds and

Tempels

as

the big and high

-

grown

Trees

are:

But

as

the

top groweth higher,

fo

the root at once

grows great-

er, and deeper

fixed,

to

caufe

it to endure

its

greater

Affaults.

Though

formerly

1

was

wont when

any fuch

Temptation

came,

to

aft

it

afide,

as

fitter to

be

abhorred than confidered

o;

yet now

this would

not

give me

Gtií

faction

;

but

I

was

fain

to

dig

to

the very Foundations, and

ferioufly

to

Examine

the

Reafons

of Chrilianity,

and

to

give a

hearingto

all

that

could be faid

againft

it, that

fo

my

Faith might

be

indeed my own. And at

(aft

I

found

that Nil

ram

canon

quamquod

ex dubio cerium

;

Nothing

is

fo

firmly believed,

as

that

which

hath

been fometinae

doubted

of.

4

34.

In

thelorm

of

this

Temptation,

I

queftioned

a

while whether

I were

indeed

a

Chriftian or

an Infidel, and

whether Faith could

confift

with

fuch

Doubts

as

I

was

confcious

of:

For

I

had

read in

many

Papils

and Proteltants,

that Faith

had

Certainty,

and

was

more than an

Opinion

;

and that if

a

Man

fhould live

a

godly Life, from the bare apprehenfions

of

the

Probability

of

the

Truth

of

Scrip-

ture, and the

Life

to come, it

would

not

fave

him,

as

being

no

true Godlinefs

or

Faith'.

But

my Judgment

doted

with the Reafon

of

Dr.

fackfon's

Determination

of

this Cafe, which fupported me

much,

that

as

in the

very Affenting

Ad

ofFaith

there

may

be fuch weaknefs, as

may make

us

cry,

Lord

increafe our

Faith

::Webelieve,

Lord

help our

belief

;

fo

when

Faith

and

Unbelief

are in

their Confli&, it

is

the

Ef

fehle

which

muff (hew

us

which

of

them

is

vietorious.

And

that

he

that

bath

fo

much Faith

as

will

caufe him

to

denyhimfelf, take uphis Crofs, and forfake

all

the

Profits,

Honours, and

Pleafures

of

this World, for

the

fake

of

Chril,

the Love

of

God, and the hope of Glory, bath

a

laving

Faith, how

weak (never

:

For God

cannot condemn

the

Soul

that truly

loveth and feeketh him

:

And thole that

Chrilt

bringeth to perfevere in the

Love

of

God,

he

bringeth to

Salvation.

And there

were

divers

Things that in

this Affault proved great

Alìlances

to

my

Faith.

r. That

the

Being and Attributes

of

God were

16

clear

to

me,

that

he was

to

my Intelle& what the

Sun

is

to

my Eye,

by

which I

fee

it

le1Î

and

all

Things:

And he

feemed mad

tome

that queftioned whether there were

a

God

:

that. any

Man

fhould dream

that the World

was

made by

a

Conflux

of

Irrational

Atoms,

and

Reafon

carne from

that which had no

Realm,

or

that Man, or

any

Inferiour

Be-

ing

was

independent

;

or that

all

the being, Power, Wifdom, and Goodnefi which

we convened with, had

not

a

Caufe

which in

Being,

Power,

Wifdom and

Good-

nefi,

did

excel

all

that which it

had caulèd

in the

World, and had

not

all

that

for_

raaliter

vel

eminenrer

in

itfell

which

it

communicated to

all

the

Creatures. Thefe,

and

all

the Suppoltions

of

the

Atheil,

have ever lince been

fo vifibly foolish

and

'harmful to

my

Apprehenfion, that I fcarce

find a

Capacity in

my

fell

of

doubting

of

them

;

and whenever the

Tempter hath joyned any thing

again(

their, with

the

ruff

of

his

Temptations, the

refthave been

the

caber overcome, becau(e

of the

overwhelming

cogent Evidences

of

a

Deity,which are

always before

the

Eyes

of

my

Soul.

2.

And it helped me much to difcern that this God

muff needs be related

to

us

as our.Owner,

our

Governour,

and

our

Benefabtor,

in

that

he

is

related

to

its

as

our

Creator; and

that

therefore we are related to him

as

his

own,

his

Subjeílu

,

and

his

Benefiviariee;

which

as

they

all proceed

by

undeniable reloltancy from our

Creation

and

Nature,

fo

thence

doour

Duties

arife

which belong to

us

in

chofe

Relations, by

as

undeniable refultancy; and

that no

thew

of

Reafon

can

be

brought

by

any

Infi-

del in

the World to

excufe

the Rational Creature

from

Loving

his

Maker, with

all

his

heart and

foul

and

might, and devoting

himfelf

and

all his Faculties

to

him

from

whom

he did receive

them, and making

him his ultimate End who

is

his

fir(

Efficient

Caufe. So

that

Godlineß is

a

Duty

foundeniably required in the

Law

of

Natut e, and

fo

difcernable by Reafon

it

fell,

that nothing but

unreafonablencfs

can contradict it.

3.

And then

it

feemed

utterly improbable to me that this God fhould

fee

us

to

be Lofers by our Loveand

Duty

to

him,

and that our Duty

fhould be

made to be

our

Snare,

or make

us

the more miferableby how much the more faithfully we

perform