Baxter - BV4831 84 F3 1830

Chap. 5.] LOSE THE SAINTS' REST. 79 own soul, and imbrue my hands in my own blood? Never had I so great an enemy as myself. Never did God offer any good to my soul, but I resisted him. He hath heaped mercy upon me, and renewed one deliverance after ano- ther, to drawmy heart to him ; yea, he bath gentlychas- tised me, and made me groan under the fruit of my diso- bedience ; and though I promised largely in my affliction., yet never was I heartily willing to serve him." Thus will it -gnaw the hearts of these sinners, to remember that they were the cause of their own ruin ; and that they wilfully and obstinatelypersisted in their rebellion, andwere mere volunteers in the service of the devil. The wound in their consciences will be yet deeper, when they shall not only remember it was their own ,doing; but that they were at so much cost and pains for their own damnation. What great undertakings did they engage in to effect their ruin; to resist theSpirit of God; to overcome the power of mercies, judgments, and even the word of God; to subdue the power of reason, and silence con- science! All this they undertook 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 ámoment; yet would they ran upon all this. 0 the labor it costs ,sinners 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 theymight have, with ease and delight; yet they will rather have covetousness and ,ambition, though it costs them cares and fears, labor 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, 6' 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 la- boriously work out my own damnation, when God com- manded me to work out myown salvation ?' If I had done as much for heaven as I did for hell, I had surely had it.