Reynolds - BX5133.R42 S4 1831

12 FIRST SERMON from public sins, do yet fall by public judgments, yet there is a. great difference in this seeming equality, the same affliction having, like the pillar that went before Israel, a light side towards God's people, and a dark side toward the Egyptians. God usually recom- pensing the outward evils of his people with more plentiful evidences of inward and spiritual joy. A good man may be in great darkness as well as a wicked man, but in that case he bath the name of God to stay himself upon, which no wicked man in the world hath, Isa. 1. 10. The metal and the dross go both into the fire together, but the dross is consumed, the metal refined. So is it with the godly and wicked in their sufferings, Zech. xiii. 9. Eccl. viii. 12, 13. This reproves the folly of those who in time of trouble rely upon vain things which cannot help them, and continue their sins still. For judgments make no difference ofany but penitent and impenitent ; sickness does not compliment with an honourable person, but uses him as coarsely as the base. Death knocks as well at a prince's palace as a poor man's cottage ; wise men die as well as fools. Yet poison usually works more violently when tempered with wine, than with some duller and baser material. In times of . trouble usually the greater the persons, the closer the judgments. When Jerusalem was taken, the nobles were slain, but the poor of the land had vineyards and fields given them, Jer. xxxix. 6. 10. Therefore, in troubles we should be more humbled for our sins than our sufferings, because sin is the sting of suffering. That mercies should not win us, that judgment should not awaken us, that the rod should speak, and we not hear, Mie. vi. 9. that the fire should burn, and we not feel, Isa. xlii. 25. that deso- lation should be threatened and we not be instructed,