Baxter - BV4831 84 F3 1830

114 OUR TITLE TO {Chap. S. escapewith his life ? for, if he knows he must die the next day, it will be small comfort to die rich or honorable. Me- thinks it should be so with thee, till thou knowest thyeter- nal state. When thou liest down to take thy rest, methinks the uncertainty of thy salvation should keep thee waking, or amaze thee in thy dreams and trouble thy sleep. Doth it not grieve thee to see the people of God so comfortable in their way to glory, when thou hast no good hope of ever enjoying it thyself? How canst thou think of thy dying hour? Thou knowest it is near, and there is no avoiding it, nor any medicine found out that can prevent it. If thou shouldst die this day, (and who " knows what a day may bring forth ? ") thou art not certain whether thou shalt go to heaven or hell. And canst thou be merry, till thou art gone out of this dangerous state ? What shift dost thou make to preserve thy heart from horror, when thou remem- berest the great judgment-day, and everlasting flames? When thou hearest of it, dost thou not tremble as Felix? If the " keepers shook, and became as dead men, when they saw the angel come and roll back the stone from Christ's sepulchre," how canst thou thinkof living in hell with devils, till thou hast some well-grounded assurance that thou shalt escape it ? Thybed is very soft, or thy heart is veryhard, if thoucanst sleep soundly in thisuncertain case. If this general uncertainty of the world about their sal- vation were remediless, then must it be borne as other una- voidable miseries. But, alas ! the common cause is- wilful negligence. Men will not be persuaded touse the remedy. The great means to conquer this uncertainty is self-exami- nation, or the serious and diligent trying of a man's heart and state by the rule of Scripture. Either men understand not the nature and use of this duty, or else they will not be at the pains to try. Go through a congregation of a thou- sand men, and how few of them shall you meet with, that ever bestowed one hour in all their lives in a close exami- nation of their title to heaven ! Ask your own conscience, reader, when was the time, and wherewas the place, that ever you solemnly took your heart to task, as in the sight of God, and examined it by Scripture, whether it be re- newed or not ; whether it be holy or not ; whether it be set most on God or the creatures, on heaven or earth ? And when did you follow on this examination till you had dig