Hopkins - HP BR75 .H65 1710

F irft Commandment. ntn away from tbeir o.wn ~eing, but on_ly .that they have~ Witne~s and a Judge within them ofall tbe1r Cnmes and Imptetles, and feel fuch f<!cretfttngs, and unfeen whips tafbin~ their Souls, that the _ror:rnres tbey ip.dure, and inftia on thcihfel'ves, make them fometimes weary of thetr l1ves, and put them upon t_hat dcfpcrateConrfe of choaking both themfelves and their Confciences too wit!~ atl Halter? \Vhence 1 fay, fhould this ?rocecd, were there not a God, a Jufl:.and Holy Deity whom Gonfcie.nce reveres? Thefc Torments and Regrets do not always proceed from fear of Shame or Pnnifluncnt from Men. No: but Confcience hath :1 power to put ' tl\cm upon the rack for their m~ft fecret Sins, which 130 eyeeverfaw,· h~f'~eirt o\icr kn~~ bnt their own ; yea, and It forceth them fomemmes themfclvcs tO' c6nfefs and d1· vnlge tl1cir o\yn Infamy, and voluntarily t? rendCr themfelves to H~manc ]nftice : Whence is this, but only from that fecret mfluence of a Supreme Bemg, that hath an awe and :iuthority over Confcience, and makes it review the fins of a Man's life with horrour, becaufe it knows the juft and Holy God will at laft review them with Vengeance. . And therefore we find that thofe who in their profperity have lived mort regard· Je(-; of a Deity, yet when their Confcience h:1th been awak<!ned by Dangers, or Sicknefs, or any furprizing Accident, the apprehenfions of a God have then fi:rongly returned upon them, and fi\1ed them with Amazement and Confufion. *Thus the Hi- .. Nam ftorian reports of that mad wicked Emperour CAligula, who made an open mOck and 1"i Dm [corn of Religion, yet when it Thundred would creep under his Bed to hide himfelfr.,t~pere from the Vengeance of that 'Jupiter, whom at other ·times he would not fpare to de-~;:::~m-ad ride and ·1· thfcaten. And therefore certainly if there be any fuCh thing as natural '"ini:n.. Confdence in all Men, it v·: iU neceJfarily (allow that there muft be a God; for weretc~titrtt• there no God, there would be no Confcience. ~[;:!;~· 11mt, otptll obv~l-vrrt; advtr~ majortJ, proriperefo t jlrato{uh. feE!umque tiJIUiere foleb .. t. Suet. in CaJ. cap. 51. t Cum Jovt C•ptt~lino fotrtto f•bnlt~fMtur--n'' fine jurgtit, "am v~x wmninantis Audttll eft f-1, J(X.l:tv Jd..y1.1.i:'l mejr.J01· Id. c. -: l· · And thns 1 have given you thefe Six rational Demonfl:rations, that there is fuch a. Supreme and lnfini.te Being as a Deity. Many other~ might be added; but thefe I account fllffi cient to conv ince any Atheill:, who will indeed be fwayec\ by that Reafon which he fo much deifies and adores., that there i$ another G 0 D befides a11d above it. Well then, what remains, but that as we have evinced th~-": Folly and Unrcafonablcnefs of,Speculltive Athcifin, fo we condemn thf? Impiety of PraB:)(:al At:heifm; the Prophlnenefs :1nd Irreligion of thofe that, as the Apofrlefpeaks, live a'> withOut God in the \Vorlcl; that live as though there were no God, nor Devil, nor Heaven, nor Hell, nor future State, nor any clillribution of Rewards in it: Indeed every wicked Man is in this Scnfe an Atheift, and fhch the Apoftle hath condemned, 7it. 1. 16. T;;ey profrfs th.tt they kmw God; but in works they deny him, being abominP.ble, and difobedient, 411d ro every uood mork reprobate· Did they really and cordially believe, that there ~sa juft and holy God that takes notice ofall their AB:ions, a great and terrible MaJdl:y, who will call them to a ftriCt account for :1ll their Cogitations, all their Difcourfcs, and all their Works; an Almighty God who bath prepared \Vrath and Vengeaqce to infliCt Oil an thofe who defpife his Authority, andtranfgrefs his Law; would they dare to propha ne his glorious :1nd revere11d Name by 'impertinent ufing of it in their trivial talk? Woald they dare to rend and tear it by their Oaths anc,llllafpheI!Jics, and hellifh Execrations and Curfes? 'Dicl they believe that he had prepared Tophet of old, that the pile thereof is Fire and much \Vood, and that all the Wicked of the World fuall be caft into it, ancl there be made an cverlafting Burnt-facrifice to the incenfcd VVrath of the great God: Did Men believe th~ horrours and torments of the Fire and S,Ulf>hur, the fterrchanddarknefs, the burning chains arid fiery whips,. the woes and auguilh of the Damned in Hell, which arc as far from being p.tterable, as they- are from -being tolerable; did they but as certa inly believe thcfc things, as it is certain that if they believe them not, theY !ball eternally feel them, ~would they d::tre frill venture on to treafure up to themfelves VVrath asa inft the Day of Wrath! \Vould Swearing, and Lying, and Stealing; and Drunkcnnefs, and Unclea11llefs fo ?:cncrall}r reign among us as they do? Indeed we perfua<le our [elves tbat we do be- ~tevethcfe things; we profefs that there is a God, and that God infinitely Holy, and mfimte\y ]ufl:; and that he will recompenfe Tribulation, A!)gtlli)l, and Wrath upon every