TO EXCITE OTHERS, &C. 163 brother's sòul ? We are also hindered by a base man-pleasing disposition. We are so desirous to keep in credit and favour with met), that it makes us most unconscionably neglect our own duty. He is a foolish and unfaithful physician, that will let a sick man die for fear of troubling him. If our friends are distracted, we please them in nothing that tends to their hurt. And yet when they are beside them- selves in point of salvation, and in their madness posting on to damnation, we will not stop them, for fear of displeasing them. How can we be Christians, that love the praise of men more than the praise of God ? For if we seek to please men, we shall not be the servants of Christ. It is common to be hindered by sinful bashfulness. When we should shame men out of their sins, we are ourselves ashamed of our duties. May not these sinners condemn us when they blush not to swear, be drunk, or neglect the worship of God ; and we blush to tell them of it, and persuade them from it ? Bashfulness is unseemly in cases of necessity. It is not a work to be ashamed of, to obey God in persuading men from their sins to Christ. Reader, bath not thy conscience told thee of thy duty many a time, and put thee on to speak to poor sinners; and yet thou hast been ashamed to open thy mouth, and so let them alone to sink or swim ? Or read and tremble : " Whosoever shall be ashamed of me and my word, in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father, with the holy angels. "(o) An idle and impatient spirit hindereth us. It is an ungrateful work, and sometimes makes men our enemies. Besides, it sel- dom succeeds at the first, except it be followed on. You must be long teaching the ignorant, and persuad- ing the obstinate. We consider not what patience God used towards us, when we were in our sins. Woe to us if God had been as impatient with us as we are with others. Another hinderance is self - seeking ; (o) Mark viii. 38.