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appear not. They may be shut out from sight: they cannot be severed.
VIII. The heaven ever moves; and yet is the place of our rest. Earth ever rests; and yet is the place of our trouble. Outward motion can be no enemy to inward rest; as outward rest may well stand with inward unquietness.
IX. None live so ill, but they content themselves in somewhat. Even the beggar likes the smell of his dish. It is a rare evil, that hath not something to sweeten it; either in sense, or in hope; otherwise, men would grow desperate, mutinous, envious of others, weary of themselves. The better that thing is, wherein we place our comfort, the happier we live; and the more we love good things, the better they are to us. The worldling's comfort, though it be good to him, because he loves it; yet, because it is not absolutely and eternally good, it fails him; wherein the Christian hath just advantage of him, while he hath all the same causes of joy refined and exalted; besides more and higher, which the other knows not of. The worldling laughs more; but the Christian is more delighted. These two are easily severed. Thou seest a goodly picture, or a heap of thy gold : thou laughest not; yet thy delight is more, than in a jest that shaketh thy spleen. As grief, so joy, is not less. when it is least expressed.
X. I have seen the worst natures and most depraved minds, not affecting all sins; but still, some they have condemned in others and abhorred in themselves. One exclaims on covetousness; yet he can too well abide riotous good-fellowship: another inveighs against drunkenness and excess; not caring how cruel he be in usury and oppression. One cannot endure a rough and quarrellous disposition ; yet gives himself over to unclean and lascivious courses: another hates all wrongs, save wrong to God. One is a civil atheist; another, a religious usurer; a third, an honest drunkard; a fourth, an unchaste justicer; a fifth, a chaste quarreller. I know not whether every devil excel in all sins: I am sure some of them have denomination from some sins, more special. Let no man applaud himself, for those sins he wanteth ; but condemn himself rather, for that sin he hath. Thou censurest another man's sin : he, thine : God curseth both.
XI. Gold is the heaviest of all metals; it is no wonder, that the VOL. VIII.
rich man is usually carried downward to his place. It is hard for the soul, clogged with many weights, to ascend to heaven. It must be a strong and nimble soul, that can carry up itself, and such a load; yet Adam and Noah flew up thither, with the double monarchy of the world; the Patriarchs, with much wealth; many holy Kings, with massy crowns and sceptres. The burthen of covetous desires is more heavy to an empty soul, than much treasure to the full. Our affections give poise or lightness to earthly things. Either abate of thy load, if thou find it too pressing: whether by having less, or loving less: or add to thy strength and activity, that thou mayest yet ascend. It is more commendable, by how much more hard, to climb into heaven with a burden.
XII. A Christian, in all his ways, must have three guides; truth, charity, wisdom: truth, to go before him ; charity and wisdom, on either hand. If any of the three be absent, he walks amiss. I have seen some do hurt, by following a truth uncharitably: and others, while they would salve up an error with love, have failed in their wisdom, and offended against justice. A charitable untruth, and an uncharitable truth, an unwise managing of truth or love, are all to be carefully avoided of him, that would
XIII. God brought man forth at first, not into a wilderness, but a garden; yet then he expected the best service of him. I never find that he delights in the misery, but in the prosperity of his servants. Cheerfulness pleases him better, than a dejected and dull heaviness of heart. If we can be good with pleasure, he grudgeth not our joy: if not, it is best to stint ourselves; not, for that these comforts are not good, but because our hearts are evil; faulting not their nature, but our use and corruption,
XIV. The homeliest service, that we do in an honest calling, though it be but to plough or dig, if done in obedience and conscience of God's commandment, is crowned with an ample reward; whereas, the best works for their kind, (preaching, praying, offering evangelical sacrifices,) if without respect of God's injunction and glory, are loaded with curses. God loveth adverbs; and cares not how good, but how well.
XV. The golden infancy of some hath proceeded to a brazen youth, and ended in a leaden age. All human maturities have
their period: only grace hath none. I durst never lay too much hope on the forward beginnings of wit and memory, which have been applauded in children: I knew, they could but attain their vigour ; and that, if sooner, no whit the better: for, the earlier is their perfection of wisdom, the longer shall be their witless age. Seasonableness is the best in all these things, which have their ripeness and decay. We can never hope too much of the timely blossoms of grace, whose spring is perpetual, and whose harvest begins with our end.
XVI. A man must give thanks for somewhat, which he may not pray for. It hath been said of courtiers, that they must receive injuries, and give thanks. God cannot wrong his; but he will cross them: those crosses are beneficial: all benefits challenge thanks: yet I have read, that God's children have, with condition, prayed against them; never, for them. In good things, we pray both for them, and their good use; in evil, for their good use, not themselves : yet we must give thanks for both. For there is no evil of pain, which God doth not: nothing, that God doth, is not good: no good thing, but is worthy of thanks.
XVII. One half of the world knows not how the other lives : and, therefore, the better sort pity not the distressed; and the miserable envy not those which fare better; because they know it not. Each man judges of others' conditions, by his own. The worst sort would be too much discontented, if they saw how far more pleasant the life of others is: and, if the better sort, such we call those which are greater, could look down to the infinite miseries of inferiors, it would make them either miserable in compassion, or proud in conceit. It is good, sometimes, for the delicate rich man to look into the poor man's cupboard; and, seeing God in mercy gives him not to know their sorrow by experience, to know it yet in speculation : this shall teach him more thanks to God, more mercy.to men, more contentment in himself.
XVIII. Such as a man's prayer is for another, it shall be, in time of his extremity, for himself: for, though he love himself more than others, yet his apprehension of God is alike for both. Such as his prayer is in a former extremity, it shall be also in death: this way we may have experience even of a thing future: if God have been far off from thee in a fit of thine ordinary sickness, fear lest he will not be nearer thee in thy last : what differs that from this, but in time ? Correct thy
dulness upon former proofs; or else, at last, thy devotion shall want life before thy body.
XIX. Those, that come to their meat as to a medicine, as Augustin reports of himself, live in an austere and Christian temper; and shall be sure not to joy too much in the creature, nor to abuse themselves : those, that come to their medicine as to meat, shall be sure to live miserably and die soon. to meat, if without a gluttonous appetite and palate, is allowed to Christians: to come to meat as to a sacrifice unto the belly, is a most base and brutish idolatry.
XX. The worst that ever were, even Cain and Judas, have had some fautors, that have honoured them for saints: and the Serpent, that beguiled our first parents, hath, in that name, had divine honour and thanks. Never any man trod so perilous and deep steps, but some have followed, and admired him. Each master of heresy hath found some clients; even he, that taught all men's opinions were true. Again, no man hath been so exquisite, but some have detracted from him; even in those qualities, which have seemed most worthy of wonder to others. A man shall be sure to be backed by some, either in good or evil; and, by some shouldered in both. It is good for a man not to stand upon his abettors, but his quarrel; and not to depend upon others, but himself.
XXI. We see thousands of creatures die for our use, and never do so much as pity them: why do we think much to die once for God? They are not ours, so much as we are his; nor our pleasure so much to us, as his glory to him : their lives are lost to us; ours, but changed to him.
of the face argues an ill complexion of body, a worse mind. Truth hath a face both honest and comely, and looks best in her own colours. But, above all, Divine Truth is most fair; and most scorneth to borrow beauty of man's wit or tongue: she loveth to come forth in her native grace, like a princely matron; and counts it the greatest indignity, to be dallied with as a wanton strumpet: she looks to command reverence; not pleasure: she would be kneeled to; not laughed at. To prank her up in vain dresses and fashions, or to sport with her in a light and youthful manner, is most abhorring from her nature : they know her not, that give her such entertainment; and shall first know her angry, when they do know her. Again, she would be plain ; but not base, not sluttish: she would be clad, not garishly; yet, not in rags : she likes as little to be set out by a base soil, as to seem credited with gay colours. It is no small wisdom, to know her just guise; but more, to follow it : and so to keep the mean, that, while we please her, we discontent not the beholders.
XXIII. In worldly carriage, so much is a man made of, as he takes upon himself: but such is God's blessing upon true humility, that it still procureth reverence. I never saw Christian less honoured, for a wise neglect of himself. If our dejection proceed from the conscience of our want, it is possible we should be as little esteemed of others, as of ourselves : but if we have true graces, and prize them not at the highest, others shall value both them in us, and us for them; and, with usury, give us that honour, we withheld modestly from ourselves.
XXIV. He, that takes his full liberty in what he may, shall repent him: how much more in what he should not ! I never read of Christian, that repented him of too little worldly delight. The surest course I have still found in all earthly pleasures, To rise with an appetite, and to be satisfied with a little.
XXV. There is a time when kings go not forth to warfare : our spiritual war admits no intermission: it knows no night, no winter; abides no peace, no truce. This calls us not into garrison, where we may have ease and respite; but into pitched fields continually: we see our enemies in the face always, and are always seen and assaulted; ever resisting, ever defending; receiving and returning blows. If either we be negligent or weary, we die : what other hope is there while one fights, and the other stands still ? We can never have safety and peace, but in victory. There must our resistance be courageous and constant, where both yielding is death, and all treaties of peace mortal.
XXVI. Neutrality in things good or evil, is both odious and prejudicial; but in matters of an indifferent nature, is safe and commendable. Herein, taking of parts maketh sides, and breaketh unity. In an unjust cause of separation, he that favoureth both parts, may, perhaps, have least love of either side; but hath most charity in himself.