Hieron - Houston-Packer Collection BX5133.H54 S4 1624

1,i8 TheeAbridgement (y. the and tobeget invs adelireand expe&ationofinercy: if the Harbinger bereie. aed,if weyeeld not tothe courfetaken to prepare vs,there is no hopeof Chrift, there is no likelihood of faluation. This is the caufe why the Miniftrie of the 1 Mu..1o Word is compared toan Axe 1, becaufe as no beame put into thebuilding,vntill theworke-mans axe bathmade it ready for the place where it muff be; fo no man is coupled intothatfpirituall frame (thebody ofChrift) tobecome the habi- in Eph,t aa:. rationofGod by the Spirit m, vntill the axe of the Word hauepared off hiscorrup- tion,and by hewinghim againe and againe,hauemade him lit for fuch a heauen- . lyferuice. Take you heed therefore, all youdefpifers ofGods ordinance: the preaching oftheWord is a burthenveto you and even a bafe thing inyour fee- ming : youfay of a Preacher, as theAtheniandidof 'Pad, What wiáthie ()abler n4á.17.18. faya ? O thatGodmight vouchfafe toopen your eyes, tofee the findspolicie herein I He will yeeldtoyou, that, proléffedly tomina Chrift weredangerous: but tofcoffe and repine, and murmure atthe Word which you heare, he maketh you beleeue, that is nothing. Why will you fulleryourfelues to be beguiled? Can yourecciue Chriftbeforeyou be prepared ? Ifyou know yourownecor- ruption, youwill neuer thinke it : or canyou (ordinarily)be prepared but bythe publike Miniltry ? Ifyou know andbeleeue the Scriprure,youwill neuer imagine it. When Chrift commeth, hisWord goethbefore; let his Word beerein&ed, oReu.3.te. and he willnot beentertained. BeheldIftandat the don't andknocks a: what mea. neth he by this but his Word ? and therefore itthere followeth : Ifany manheart myvoice, be. If this knockingbenot regarded, he himfelfe dot]) neuer enter. It isin vaine to fay, I loue Chrifl,but himwhich preacheth Chrift I do notloue: Ei- ther Inchan onemuftprepare vs, orChrift Infus w ill sotdwell withvs. vfe g. Secondly, by this weemayknow, whether wee haue finely profited by the Word whichwe haue often heard. Areour heartsmadeready to receive Chrift, areweprepared to entertainhim ? We areprofitable fchollcrs. Is there no fir- nelíe in vsfor thishonourablegueft ? we ham: loft our time,andour hearing hi- thertopathbin in vaine. But what is this tobeprepared for Chrill ? for thismay feemeto bee fpoken fomething toogenerally. The Prophet ifalab will tel!vs; na;nely,tharweareprepared for Cbrift;whenweare Taoreand fa contritefirite Pf B6 a and trembleat theward P. Aman is then ready forChrift, whenhis foal, thirilsib F Wral6 r or bim,andhip lot ern rearl after bim4; when like thewomanofCanaan,he 9 3 f . g g .Y Í tMarasa7, would be gladofa fewcrutnmes e ofmercy; when with Paid he coomtethaäthmgs 11hí1.3.9. robe toffeand doingthat he mayminneChrift r; when he hathno mindeofany thing fomuch ashow nee may findefavour withGod; when his owne liinnesarecum a burden anddereflation eeto him, her men quaketh in his owne conceit, to thinke howhe fhould doe, ifGodfhouldcall him to a (traitaccount andproceed againfl him in extreamitie. Let vs proceede then : Idemand ofThee, which halt nowfolong beene a hearerofthe Word preached: Is it thus withthee ? Bath thy heart beene plowed vp, and rent in finderby the power of theWord, fo that nowthe tidings of theGofpell are mufrcke to thinetares, and thy fpirit sPfal.; ç.;, within theecrieth out continually, O fay unto my fvale, lam thy falsarios r? O my Sauiour, tsrne thyface untome. andbanemercy upon mee, forI amdefalate and 5Pfal.aç.r6. poorev ?. It is an argumenethat thou haft heard with profite, and mayeft give a comfortable account ofthy hearing. Art thou of a dull anddead heart, not knowing outof thine owne prinarefeeling what it is tolong for Chrift, and to thirst after hisrighteoufnes ? Surely thyhearing hitherto bath bin fruitleffe, and thou art yet inthyfras. And trudy fuels are themohr Let themnlieryofChrihl, and ofgracein andby himbee laidopen entovs, neuer focagilyorcomforta- bly, itdoth not more affe& them,thenany ofthe moll idle tales that can bee i- magined. It is impofsible, that men preparedfor Chrill, fhould,when Chrift is sIfaf.f9, preached, ftop their eares, likethe deajeAddere,and voluntarily breakethemfelues toa kinde offetled drowfineffe. Thus much of the reafon, why lane was to be e