Heaven Collection BV4831 .B4 1765

TO BE EXPECTED ON EARTH, 181 covered nor removed. Neither say, " If God would deliver me out of it, I could be content to bear it." Is it nothing that he hath promised, it shall work for thy good ? Is it not enough that thou art sure to he delivered at death ? Nor let it be said, " If my affliction did not disable me from my duty, I could bear it." It doth not disable thee for that duty which tendeth to thy own personal benefit, but is the greatest quickening help thou canst expect. As for thy duty to others, it is not thy duty when God disables thee. Perhaps thou wilt say, " The godly are my afflictions; if it were ungodly men, I could easily bear it." Whoever is the instrument, the affliction is from God, and the deserving cause thyself; and is it not better to look more to God than thyself? Didst thou not know that the best men are still sinful in part ? Do not plead, " If I had but that consolation which you say God reserveth for suffering times, I should suffer more contentedly; but I do not perceive any such thing." The more you suffer for righteousness' sake, the more of this blessing you may expect ; and the more you suffer for your own evil doing, the longer it will be before that sweetness comes. Are not the comforts you desire neglected or. resisted ? Have your afflictions wrought kindly with you, and fitted you for comfort? It is not mere suffering that prepares you for com- fort, but the success and fruit of suffering upon your hearts. § 10. (II.) To shew the unreasonableness of rest- ing in present enjoyments, consider, it is idolizing them ; it contradicts God's end in giving them ;- it is the way to have them refused, withdrawn, or imbittered ; to be suffered to take up our reste here, is the greatest curse ; it is seeking rest where it is not to be found ; the creatures, without God, would aggravate our misery ; and to confirm all this, we may consult our own experience, and that of others.