Manton - BX8915 M26 1684 v1

Ver. 28, 2 g. xxvth Chapter of St. MA T T H F w. Portion to fevers, and to eight ; for thou kno:vefl nst what Evil there may be upon Earth. Embrace the prefent Opportunity ; thou caníl not forefee how loon thou may'ft be deprived of it : Thou may'ft die, and leave thy Wealth to thole that will Ihut .up their Bowels. Thou may'ft be in want ; God may difable thee : therefore, make ufe of the Seaton for Liberality, for doing Good, while you have it. So Office, Au- thority, Refpeft in the Church, is an Opportunity. God may tali us out of the Vale. yard by the Malice ofMen, or as unfavoury Salt, Matth. 13. Mal. 2. 9. Therefore, I have made you contemptible and bafe before the Peoele : Though all that are call out are not fo ; Matth. z r. 3 5. the Husbandman took his Servants, and beat one, and killed ano- ther. However, it will be a difcomfort if we have been negligent. 2. Ordinances, Means of Improvement may. be .loft. Gen. 6..3. MySpirit Shall not al- wayes firive with Man ; that is, by the Miniftry of Noah. And God threatneth to take away the Hedge of his Vineyard, when all his Colt is lofty Ifa. 5. 5;6. What could I have done more for my Vineyard ? So Luk. 13. 7. And he faid to the Dreffer r óf the Vine- yard, Lo, there three Tears came 1, Peeking Fruit on his Fig-tree, arts! I find none ; Cut it down, why cumbreth it the Ground? 3. Common Gifts ;. God juftly taketh them away from thofe that abufe, or make no good ufe of -them. Many. that excelled in Gifts, that feemed to have great Parts, are pitifully blafted afterwards. 'Tis no hard matter to difcern a Maim and De- cay of Gifts in them that ufe them not, as if the Spirit were departed from them, Zjrlr. II. 17. The Idol-Jhepherd's Arm (hall be dryed up, and his Eye darkned : That is, his Gifts (hall be taken away, at leaft, the Power and Life Of them. Many lofè the Frefhnèfi of their Gifts of Prayer, the Livelinefs of their Knowledge. .4. Initial Grace, Hein 6. Saving Gifts and Graces are â;ce1amdnn , without Repentance, Rom. Is. 29. Where there is Life begun, 'tis not quenched : But where there are fome hopeful Inclinations, they begin to draw off their Hearts from the World to God ; though they had efcaped the Pollutions of the World, their latter End may be ivorfe ' than their Beginning, '2 Pet. 2.2o. .5. Dona Sanl?ficantia ought Rill to be improved, that the Grace of God be not re= ceived In vain, t Cbr: 15. ro. Grace in fome meafure may fuffer Lofs by our Negli- gence : r Theft: 5. 19. ,wench not the Spirit, defpife not Prophefying. Fire is quenched by pouring on Water, or with- drawing Fuel : So the Spirit is quenched, by living in Sin, which-is like pouring on Water ;. or not improving our Gifts and Grace, which is like with- drawing the Fuel : Gradus remitritur, gilts tntermittitur, habitua non omit - titur ; Though the Habit be fecured by God's Covenant ; yet fuck Portions and De- grees of Grace may be loft, as may not eafily he recovered again. V SE, Is to commend to us Diligence and Induflry, efpecially in the Work of our Heavenly Calling. A Man's Life is divided between Waking and Sleeping ; fo is his Waking time divided between Labour and Reft : For Humane Nature cannot endure continual Exercife, without Intermiffion. Therefore, a fpiritual wife Man Should fo govern his Life, that his Labour may anfwer his great Work and Truft, and his Reft may not infringe his Labour, but help it. Our firft Care Should be of La- bour ; for Man in this World is born to labour : Here is not the Place of his Reft and Recompence, but of his Exercife 'and Tryal. Reft is but for Labour ; therefore doth he rat, that he may be refrelhed for his Labour. Six dayes are given in the Law to labour ; but One to refs ; and that Reft is not Carnal, but Holy, and to be improved forour main Duties. Adam in Innocency was not made for Idlenefs : Mo- /es telleth us, That God put him into the Garden, to drefs it: That Happinefs we partook of then, was confifient enough with,our Work. He that looketh upon the Beauty of the Sun, may eafily collea, that God lighted not fuels a bright Torch for Man to fleep by, or to pats over his dayes in Eafe and Idlènefs. The Law that was given Man to' labour, remained after Sin; yea, Sin brought Grievoufnefs and Bur - then to it : So what was a Law before, is turned into a Punifhment now : For God told Adam, That in the Sweat of his Brow he Should eat his' Bread. In the whole courfe of Nature, nothing is idle; the Sun and Stars do perpetually move and roll up and down ; the Earth bringeth forth Fruit ; the Seas have their Ebbings arid Flowings ; and the Rivers their Çourfes ; the Angels are defcribed with Wings, as ready to ful- fill God's Commanddlent, and run to do his Pleafure. ''Twere an unworthy thing, among fo many Examples, and Patterns ofDiligence, for Man alone to be idle. In the leaff Creatures, God bath taught us ; as by the Ant or Pifmire: Prov. 6.6. Go S z to