Hopkins - HP BR75 .H65 1710

.11 Funeral Sermon. Virg• .iE· an ever~living Soul to dying Comforts. This were a Tyranny wbrfe th:m that of neid. s. A1ez..entim, who (as the Poet tells us) bound the Living to dead Cark'affes. . It was a perverfe ufe the old Heathens m:tde of the neceffity of dying, when in PoJ'"'~11• their Feafts, their Cull:Om was to bring in a. Skeleton to their Guefts, thereby ex- ~!;~~~ 4,~ citing .thein to Mirth and Voluptuoulhefs, while they could reJifh filch Delights, bcgmttam caufe lhortly they muft be as much Dllft and Bones as what they faw. This is the "ttulit fer· common Theme of Horace, Anacreon, and all the Epicurean Stye. Like thofe, 1 OJr. ;;~~~; :~: 1)· 32. Let UJ cat and drink, for tQ morrow we ]hall die. · titlfli ejKJ~ertehr£qll' Jw,~.e i11 omncm pnrttm Jltf!trmtur, HtlllC eum foper menfom fimd lluurllqttt ~Jhjtei/fot, & ea!trtttti 11 '!110bilU a!t~u~t figura~ txp~:mtrct, Trim•kio "djmt, Hm, ht• 1101 mifiros quam tqttt4 homun,io 11il eft.' Sh erimtu ,unfli pofl· '}UIIm n~JIIuferet omiJ. Ergo 'IJJ'Uamtu duTN Jiut e.fe bmC, Pet r. Ufc !I. How,much better improvcmentdoth the Apoftle make of it, I O>r. 7· 29? The time is jhort, it remaineth therefore, that they that have Wives, be as tho' he had none; aJld they that weep M tho' they TVept not; and they that rejo;•ce, M tho' the rejoyced not ; and they that buy, M tho_ugh they poffif{ed not; and they that u_(e _rhis Wo~ld, JU not abujing it, fOr the Fajhion of thu World pa{(tth away. What Folly IS It to to1l, and wear out our Lives in the purfuit of thofC vain things from which we may J>e fnatched before we can cafl: another look at them? Go, Fool, and dote upon thy own, or others Beauty:; but know withal, that Ihortly a Nefl: of Worms will breed there, and fuck corruption and naftill.cfs out of that Face, which hath been thy Pride, and tbc Beholders Sin and Shame. Go, Worldling; rake together thy Wealth, and hoard up thy Treafhres; but know withal, that of all thy Polfeffions t hou Jhalt Ihortly need no more than will but fuffice to bury t hee. GOld and Silver are too heavy lading to be carried into the other \"'orld; noth ing of them !hall go with thee, nnlefs it be their ruft to witncfs aga inft thee. If there be any difference, whether thou live rich or poor, honourably or defpifed, in pain or in pleafi1re ; yet certainly there is none when t hou comcft to die. What is it to a dying.Man, Vihether his Chamber be richly furn ilhed or not, whether he breath out his Soul in a Pa lace, or in a Cottage? .We fhall not take pleafilrc in fununing up our Eftates, and count ing how much we Jha ll die worth, and how many hundreds or thoufands we !hall leave beh ind us. Thefe th ings will be then as £1r from being our Care, as they arc now from being our Conccrnments. Let the Voluptuous Man purfue his Delights and Pafl:imes; but let him know withal, that he cloth but thruft away his days to make way for Death. Tl1.1t hour is coming, when he will more earneftly wilh to gain time, than ever he ftudicd to fpcnd it. Let the Ambitious Court Honours and Preferments; but withal let him know, it will be no gre.1t Comfort to him in Death, that he fa \Is under a bigger Name and Title than others. What are they when they ftand 11pon the highell: Pinacle ofWorldly Dignities, but Bladders fwcllcd up with the breath of t~c Popul::tr Rout, NothinF;s fet a-fi:rut; Chefs-men th:tt on the Board play the Kmg and Noblcs, but in the Bag are of the fame Materials and Rank with others ? Though now it be hard to perfi1ade Men of thefe things, yet powerful and eloquent Death will certainly pcrft1adc ~hem better. than all the Sermons or: Demonftrations that ever they heard. At H1gh-noon thmgs caft but a fhort and little Shadow· but in t he declining Evening thefe Shadows are extended _to an huge Length and v'aft Dimcnfions. So 'tis with us, in the High-noon of our Age, in the heat and vigorous warmth of m:r Blood, th_e World fecms to caft but l ~ ttlc Sh~dow; all things in it appear to us bn ght and onent; bu t "Yhe!l ou~ Evenmg hegms to decline, and our days Jhut in, when our Eyes Jha1l fw1m mNtght and Darknefs, then the Shadows are extended, and all the bright and glittering things of the World will appear to us nothing but Gloominefs and Horrour. Secondly, Since we all know t hat we Jhall die, let this ferve to exhort us ferioufly to prepare for our Death. That our Souls are immortal and muft live for ever, is a dictate of Nature it felf, if we had not Scripture tO confirm it. And thofe who have ever ventured to deny it, have rather fpoken their wiJhes than belief. They are di\•ine fparks kindled only by the Breath ofGod, and the fame breath that kindled them hath likewife pronounced that they Jhall never die; Jhortly they muft launch forth into Etern ity, and know by experience the Truth of thofe imprcffions that God hath ftampt upon them concerning their own endlefs duration. 'Twill