Heaven Collection BV4831 .B4 1765

WHO LOSE THE SAINT'S REST. 93 resist the Spirit of God ; to. overcome the power of mercies, judgments, and even the word of God ; to subdue the power of reason, and silence conscience! All this they understood and performed. Though they walked in continual danger of the wrath of God, and knew he could lay them in the dust, and cast them into hell, in a moment; yet would they run upon all this. O the labour it costs sinners to be damned ! Sobriety, with health, and ease, they might have had at a cheaper rate ; yet they will rather have gluttony and drunkenness, with poverty, shame, and sickness. Contentment they might have, with ease and delight; yet they will rather have covetousness and ambition, though it cost them cares and fears, labour of body; and distraction of mind. Though their anger be self- torment, and revenge and envy consume their spirits ; though uncleanness destroy their bodies, estates, and good names ; yet will they do and suffer all this rather than suffer their souls to be saved. With what rage will they lament their folly, and say, " Was damnation worth all my cost and pains ? Might I not have been damned on free cost, but I must purchase it so dearly ? I thought I could have been saved without so much ado ; and could I not have been destroyed Without so much ado? Must I so laboriously work out my own damnation, when God commanded me to work out my .own salvation? If I had done as much for heaven as I did for hell, I had surely had it. I cried out of the tedious way of godliness, and the painful _ course of self-de- nial; and vet I could be at a great deal more pains for Satan, and for death. Had I loved Christ as strongly as I did my pleasures, and profits, and honours, and thought on him as often, and sought him as painfully, O how happy had I now been ! Put justly do I suffer the flames of hell, for buying them so dear, rather than have heaven when it was pur- chased to my hands !" § 19. 0 that God would persuade thee, Reader, to take up these thoughts now, for preventing the in- conceivable calamity of taking them up in hell as thy