Hopkins - HP BR75 .H65 1710

Fifth Commandme!lt. fame Breath with thy felf. They are ~ervants, but yet they arc Men; they are ?ervifur.r, Servants, _yea rather they are .thy Fellow-Servants. And it is in the .Power ofthe 1 ~5~ hom1,- fame PrOvidence who hath fubJetl:cd them to thee, to chanee the Scene, exalt them H r.~en , and bring thee into Bondage. Why then fuouldft thou dcfpife them? 'Nhereas c~~fe:~t thou knowcft not how foon thou mayeft be brought under a more miferable Ser- Id. vitude. They are Servants out of Neceffity, when perhaps their Mafters are voluntary Slaves: Some are Slaves to their Lufts, others to Covetoufnefs, others to Ambition, and all to Hope, all to Fear. And there is no Servitude fo juftly contemptible, as that which is voluntary and wilful. Confidey again, that he who is a Servant to Men, may be the Lord's Free-man; whereas ht: that is free ilmong Men, may be a Slave to his Lufh, and by them to the Devil: And thcrctOre we ought neither to think defpicably of them, nor to ufe them feverely, but to treat them with Love, as our Fellow-Creatures, our Fellow~ Servants, yea, and Fellow-Heirs of the fame Inheritance of Lite and Glory. And thus much concerning the Mafrcr's Duty in Government. Another General wherein his Duty confifts, is Provilion; and that bothfortheir temporal and fpiri~ual Good; for th.e welfare b?th of their Bodies and th~ir So~ls. Firft, As for thetr temporal Provlf'ion; he ts bound to fupply them with thtngs 1 • neceffary for them according to ~he Tenour of the AgrectJJCllt and Compact made between them, Coloff 4· 1. M afters, give unto ) 'Our Srf1.Jants that which is juft and equal. He one,ht to provide for them Food and Raiment; or clfe in lien of any of thefe faithfully to p~y them their ~greed Wages. Levit. I 9· 13. 71;e ~V ages o/ him tbat ;; hired ]hAll not abide all Night Wtth thee, until the Morning. And again, Deut~ 2 4 . 1 4 , 1)· Thou Jlutlt not opprefs an hired Scr'Vant that is poor and needy; at bis Day. tl1ou/halt give him his Hire; neither jiMll the Sun go down upon it, left he cry againft thee unto the Lord, and it be SVI unto thee. This Oppreffion of Servants in withholding from them their covenanted Reward of their Labour, is a crying and provoking Sin. So the A poftle, ;]ames 5. 4· The Hire of the Labourers which have reaped down the Fields, (fo likewife of thofe who have done any ot.her Work and Service for you) whi'h i.r of you kept back by fraud, cryetb; and the Cries of them that hn'Vc reaped are cntred into the Ears of the Lord of. Sabbath, Secondly, ,P.s the Martcr is to make temporal ProvHion for their Bodies, fo much .j;. more is he to provide for their fpiritual Welfare, and the good of their Souls; in as much' as their Souls are incomparably to be preferred before their Bodies. Every Maftcr is to be both a Prieft and a Prophet within his own Family, as wen as a King; J1e is to inJhuCl: thern in the \V ill and Laws of God, to inform their Ignorance, refolve th cir Doubts, excite and quicken them to the Service of Ood, to retlify their Errours and Miitakes, to pray with them and for them, to direct them in [he \Nay that leads to Heaven Jnd Hqppinefs, and above all, to walk before them in it by bis holy and pious Example . But how few arc there that do confcicntioufiy P' rform this D11ty! Do not the moft think it enough if they provide Ncccifa-. rics alld Conveuiencies for the Body, the dull, ontward, and earthly part of Man? And indeed it were CIJough if they had only Beafts to look after. But remember, thy Scrva uts, and thofe who belong to thy Charge, have preciOus and immortal Souls, capable of eternal Glory and Happinefs, but liable to eternal Mifery and Torments: And God bath intrufted thee with thefe Souls of theirs, and will require them at thy Hands. What an heavy and tremendous Doom will pafs upon thee, when God !ha\\ demand at thy .hands the Souls of thy Servants, or of thy Children, whkh have peri01'd through thy default! Will it be enough then to plead, Lord, 1 fed and clothed them, and was careful of their Health and Welfare? Yea, indeed if their Bodies only were committed to thy care, this were enough ; but fee, there they ftand Condemned, and ready for Eternal Flames, for the Ignorance which thou oughteft to have informed, for the ProJ?hanenefs which thOn oughteft to have chaftifed and hindred, for thofe NegleCts of holy Duties in the which thou oughteft to have gone before them; and therefore though they fi1all die and pedlh in their Sins, yet their Blood will God require at thy Hands, whofe Carclcfnefs or evil Example, bath hardned them in Wickednefs, and led them on fecurely to Deftrud:ion. Let me therefore warn you who are ~biters and Heads of Families, thJt as you tender the Souls of thofe who are under yonr Charge, yea, as you tender your own Souls, which are deeply ingaged and concerned in theirs; fo that you would ufe Uu ~