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Sermon XIX

SERMON XIX.

THE FIRST SERMON UPON THIS TEXT, PREACHED AT ST. PAUL'S, IN THE EVENING, UPON EASTER DAY, 1626.

1 Coe. xv. 29.

Else what shall they do that are baptized for dead? If the dead rise not all, why are they then baptized for dead?

Odit dominu s quifestum Domini unum putat diem, says Origen; God hates that man that thinks any of his holy days last but one day; that is, that never thinks of a resurrection, but upon Easter day. I have therefore proposed words unto you, which will not be determined this day; that so, when at any other time, we return to the handling of them, we may also return to the meditation of the resurrection. To which we may best give a beginning this day, in which we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Christ Jesus: and in his one resurrection, all those several kinds of resurrections which appertain unto us, because howsoever these words have received divers good expositions from divers good expositors, and received one perverse exposition from our adversaries in the Roman church, who have detorted and deflected them, to the maintenance of their purgatory, yet all agree, that these words are an argument for the resurrection, and therefore proper to this day. And yet this day we shall not so much inquire, wherein, and in what sense the words are an argument of the resurrection, as enjoy the assurance that they are so; not so much distribute the text into an explication of the particular words (which is, as the mintage and coining of gold into several lesser pieces) as to lay up the whole wedge, and ingot of gold all at once in you, that is, the precious assurance of your glorious resurrection.

In establishing whereof, we shall this day, make but this short passage, by these two steps: glory in the end, and grace in the way; the glory of our bodies, in the last resurrection then, and the grace upon our souls, in their present resurrection now. For as we do not dig for gold [merely and only for treasure, but to dispense and issue it also, for present provision and use, not only for the future, but for the present too; so we do not gather the doctrine of the resurrection only for that dignity which the body shall receive in the triumphant, but also for the consolation which thereby our souls may receive in the militant church. And therefore, as in our first part, which will be, by what means the knowledge and assurance of the resurrection of the body accrues to us, we shall see, that though it be presented by reason before, and illustrated by reason after, yet the root and foundation thereof is in faith; though reason may chafe the wax, yet faith imprints the seal, (for the resurrection is not a conclusion out of natural reason, but it is an article of supernatural faith; and though you assent to me now, speaking of the resurrection, yet that is not out of my logic, nor out of my rhetoric, but out of that character, and ordinance which God hath imprinted in me, in the power and efficacy whereof, I speak unto you, as often as I speak out of this place.) As, I say, we determine our first part in this, how the assurance of this resurrection accrues to us, so when we descend to our second part, that is the consolation which we receive whilst we are in via, here upon our way in this world, out of the contemplation of that resurrection to glory, which we shall have in patria, at home in heaven, and how these two resurrections are arguments and evidences of one another, we shall look upon some correspondencies, and resemblances between natural death, and spiritual death by sin, and between the glorious resurrection of the body, and the gracious resurrection of the soul, that so having brought bodily death and bodily resurrection, -and spiritual death and spiritual resurrection, by their comparison, into your consideration, you may anon depart somewhat the better edified in both, and so enjoy your present resurrection of the soul, by grace, with more certainty, and expect the future resurrection of the body to glory, with the more alacrity and cheerfulness.

Though therefore we may hereafter take just occasion of entering into a war, in vindicating and redeeming these words, seized and seduced by our adversaries, to testify for their purgatory, yet this day being a day of peace and reconciliation with God and man, we begin with peace, with that wherein all agree, that these words {Else what shall they do that are baptized for dead? If the dead rise not all, why are they baptised for dead ?) must necessarily receive such an exposition, as must be an argument for the resurrection; this baptism pro mortuis, for dead, must be such a baptism as must prove that, the resurrection. For, that the apostle repeats twice in these few words ; Else, (says he) that is, if there be no resurrection, why are men thus baptized I And again, if the dead rise not, why are men "thus baptized? Indeed the whole chapter is a continual argument for the resurrection; from the beginning thereof to the 35th ver. he handles the an sit, whether there be a resurrection, or no; for, if that be denied, or doubted in the root, in the person of Christ, whether he be risen or not, the whole frame of our religion falls, and every man will be apt (and justly apt) to ask that question which the Indian king asked, when he had been catechized so far in the articles of our Christian religion, as to come to the suffered, and crucified, and dead, and buried, impatient of proceeding any farther, and so losing the consolation of the resurrection, he asked only, Is your God dead, and buried? then let me return to the worship of the sun, for I am sure the sun will not die; if Christ be dead and buried, that is, continue in the state of death, and of the grave, without a resurrection, where shall a Christian look for life I Therefore the apostle handles, and establishes that first, that assurance, a resurrection there is.

From thence he raises and pursues a second question De modo; But some man will say, says he, How are the dead raised up, and with what body come they forth? And in these questions, De modo, there is more exercise of reason and of discourse: for, many times, the matter is matter of faith, when the manner is not so, but considerable, and triable by reason; many times, for the matter, we are all bound, and bound upon salvation, to think alike; but for the manner, we may think diversely, without forfeiture of salvation, or impeachment of discretion; for he is not presently an indiscreet man, that differs in opinion from another man that is discreet, in things that fall under opinion. Absit superstitio, hoc est superflua religio, says a moderate man of the Roman church1; This is truly superstition, to bring more under

1 Gerson.

the necesssity of being believed, than God hath brought in his Scriptures; Superfluous religion, says he, is superstition ; remove that, and then, (as he adds there) Contradictoria, quorum utrumque probabih, credi possunt, Where two contrary opinions are both probable, they may be embraced, and believed by two men, and those two be both learned, and pious, and zealous men. And this consideration should keep men from that precipitation, of imprinting the odious and scandalous names of sects, or sectaries upon other men who may differ from them, and from others with them, in some opinions. Probability leads me in my assent, and I think thus; Let me allow another man his probability too, and let him think his way, in things that are not fundamental. They that do not believe alike, in all circumstances of the manner of the resurrection, may all, by God's goodness, meet there, and have their parts in the glory thereof, if their own uncharitableness do not hinder them: and he that may have been in the right opinion, may sooner miss heaven, than he that was in the wrong, if he come uncharitably to condemn or contemn the other -: for, in such cases, humility, and love of peace, may, in the sight of God, excuse and recompense many errors, and mistakings.

And after these, of the matter, of the manner of the resurrection, the apostle proceeds to a third question, of their state and condition, whom Christ shall find alive upon earth, at his second coming; and of them he says only this, Ecce, mysterium vobis dico, Behold, I tell you a mystery, a secret, we shall not all sleep, that is, not die so, as that we shall rest any time in the grave, but we shall all be changed, that is, receive such an immutation, as that we shall have a sudden dissolution of body and soul, which is a true death, and a sudden re-union of body and soul, which is a true resurrection, in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye. Thus careful, and thus particular is the apostle, that the knowledge of the resurrection might be derived unto us.

Now of these three questions, which he raises and pursues; first, whether there be a resurrection, and then what manner of resurrection, and then what kind of resurrection they shall have that live to the day of judgment, our text enters into the first; for, for the first, that a resurrection there is, the apostle opens several topics, to prove it; one is, from our head, and pattern, and example, Christ Jesus: for so he argues first. If the dead be not raised, then Christ is not raised*; as sure as the head is, so sure the body is raised. And then another topic, from whence he produces arguments, is, the absurd consequences, and illations, that would follow, if there were no resurrection. Of that kind one is, If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most miserable3; Why? because in this life we suffer persecution for this profession. And another is, Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we shall die*; What needs this abstinence, and this severe denying ourselves, the conveniences of this life, if all end in this life? And lastly, in the same kind, follows this text, If the dead rise not at all, why are they baptized for dead? And by all these ways doth the apostle convey this knowledge of the resurrection.

But would all these ways serve? would all this satisfy that inquisition which we have brought, how this assurance of the resurrection accrues to us? Would any of these reasons, or would all these reasons convince a man, who were not at all prepossessed, and pre-occupated with a belief of the resurrection, with an assurance thereof? The resurrection was always a mystery in itself: sacrum secretum, a holy secret, and above the search of reason. For there are secrets and mysteries of two kinds, as the school presents them; some things are so, Quia quondam interposita, Because, though the thing be near enough unto me, yet something is interposed between me, and it, and so I cannot see it: and some things are so, Quia longe seposita, Because they are at so remote a distance, as that, though nothing be interposed, yet my sight cannot extend to them. In the first sense, the sacraments are mysteries, because though the grace therein be near me, yet there is velamen interpositum, there is a visible figure, a sensible sign, and seal, between me, and that grace, which is exhibited to me in the sacrament: in the second sense, the resurrection is a mystery, because it is so far removed, as that it concerns our state and condition in the next world; For man sleepeth, and riseth not; he shall not wake again, nor be raised from his sleep, till the heavens be no more''; that is, not till the dissolution of all.

So then, the knowledge of the resurrection in itself, is a

* Ver. 16. * Ver. 19. 4 Ver. 32. 5 Job xiv. 12.

mystery, removed out of the sphere, and latitude of reason; and, (to consider this remoteness farther) though the knowledge of Christ's resurrection, be nearer us, than our own, (for first we know his, because from his we argue and conclude our own, as the apostle institutes his argument, If the dead rise not, Christ is not risen) yet even the resurrection of Christ, was so far from being clear and obvious to the best, and the best illumined understandings, as that, though Christ himself had spoken often of his resurrection, to his disciples, and apostles, yet they did not clearly, thoroughly, (scarce at all) understand his resurrection. When Christ said to the Jews promiscuously, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it; I wonder not that they, blinded with their own malice, discerned no resurrection in that saying, but applied it to that temple, which was forty-six years in building; for, till the resurrection was really accomplished, . and actually performed, the apostles themselves understood not the resurrection. Then, when Christ was risen from the dead, and that those two great apostles, Peter and John, had been at the sepulchre, and received from thence so much evidence, as convinced them, and prevailed upon them, then, and not till then, they began to understand the resurrection; For, till then, (says the text expressly there) they knew not the Scriptures, that he must rise from the dead*.

And truly, if we take a holy liberty, (as piously we may) to consider Christ's bodily actions after his resurrection, they were not such, as without admitting any opposition, might induce a necessity of confessing a resurrection. For, though he exhibited himself to their eyes to be seen, and to their ears to be heard, and to their fingers to be felt, though he eat with them, and did many other actions of a living body, yet, as the angels in the Old Testament did the like actions, in those bodies which they had assumed; so might Christ have done all these, in such a body, though that which was buried in the sepulchre, had had no resurrection.

It is true, that Christ confirmed his resurrection, Multis arguments, as the vulgate reads that place; With many infallible tokens1, says our former translation, With many infallible proofs,

0 John xx. 9. 7 Acts i 3.

says our later; but still all these arguments, and tokens, and proofs wrought by way of confirmation; something was otherwise imprinted in them, and established by a former apprehension of faith, and these arguments, and tokens, and proofs confirmed it. For the reasons for the resurrection do not convince a natural man at all; neither do they so convince a Christian, but that there is more left to his faith, and he believes something beyond and above his reason.

The resurrection in itself, Christ's resurrection, though it be clearer than ours, Christ's resurrection, even after it was actually * accomplished, was still a mystery", out of the compass of reason; and then, as it was above our reason, so, howsoever it be our proof, and our pattern for our resurrection, yet it is above our imitation. For our resurrection shall not be like his. Omnes alii suscitati, Christus solus resurrexit, says St. Bernard; All we shall be raised from the dead, only Christ arose from the dead. We shall be raised by a power working upon us, he rose by a power inherent, and resident in himself. And yet, though in this respect, our resurrection be more open to the proof of reason, than the resurrection of Christ, (for that which hath least miracle in it, is most open to reason; and therefore a natural man would easilier believe that God might raise a dead man, than that a dead man should be God, and so able to raise himself, which was Christ's case, for the Godhead of Christ was as much united to his dead body in the grave, as it was to his soul in Paradise, or to his whole person consisting of body and soul, before, or after his death and resurrection) though, in this respect, I say, our resurrection be more open to reason, because it hath less of the miracle in it, yet when we come to assign reasons, even for our. resurrection, (as we see Athenagoras hath undertaken, with a great deal of wit, and learning, and confidence, in his apology for the Christians, to the emperor, within one hundred and fifty-five years after Christ; and the schoolmen make account, that they have brought it nearer to the understanding, nay even to the very sense, by producing some such things, as even in nature, do not only resemble, but, as they apprehend, evict a resurrection) yet when all is done, and all the reasons of Athenagoras, and the school, and of St. Paul himself, are weighed, they determine all

in this, that they are fair, and pregnant, and convenient illustrations of that which was believed before; and that they have force, and power to incline to an assent, and to create and beget such a probability, as a discreet, and sad, and constant man might rest in, and submit to. But yet, we shall find also, that though no man may speak a word, or conceive a thought against the resurrection, because for the matter, we are absolutely and expressly concluded by the Scriptures, yet a man may speak probably, and dangerously against any particular argument, that is produced for the resurrection. We believe it immediately, entirely, cheerfully, undisputably, because we see it expressly delivered by the Holy Ghost; and we embrace thankfully, that sweetness, and that fulness of that blessed Spirit, that as he lays an obligation upon our faith, by delivering the article positively to us, so he is also pleased to accompany that article, with reasons and arguments proportionable to our reason and understanding: for though those reasons do not so conclude us, as that nothing might be said to the contrary, or nothing doubted after, yet the Holy Ghost having first begotten the faith of this article, Per ea augescit fides, et pinguescit, (as Luther speaks in another case) by those reasons and arguments, and illustrations, that faith is nourished and maintained in a good habitude and constitution.

And of that kind are all the reasons brought by St. Paul here; the matter is positively delivered by him, and so apprehended by us, and his reasons (as we said before) issue out of two topics; be pleased to look upon both. The first is our pattern, Christ Jesus: he is risen, therefore we shall. In which, though I have a fair illustration and consolation in that, the head is risen, therefore the body shall, yet this reaches not to make my resurrection like his, for I shall not rise as he did. And then from his other topic, his reasons rise thus: if there be no resurrection, we that suffer thus much for the profession of Christ, are the miserablest men in the world. Why so? Have not all philosophers had scholars, and all heretics disciples, and all great men flatterers, and every private man affections? And hath there not been as much suffered by occasion of these, as St. Paul argues upon here, and yet no imagination, no expectation of a resurrection? Leave out the consideration of philosophers, many of which suffered

Vol. I. 2 B

more than the Turks do, and yet the Turks suffer infinitely more, in their mortifications, than the papists do; leave out the heretics, which were so hungry of suffering, that if they could not provoke others to kill them, they would kill themselves; leave out the pressures of our own affections, and concupiscencies, and yet the covetous man is in a continual starving, and the licentious man in a continual consumption; take only into your consideration, the miserable vexation of the flatterer, and humourer, and dependant upon great persons, that their time is not their own, nor their words their own; their joys are not their own, nay their sorrows are not their own; they might not smile if they would, nor they may not sigh when they would, they must do all according to another's mind, and yet they must not know his mind; consider this, and you cannot say, but that there is as much suffered in the world, as this upon which St. Paul argues, by them who place not their consolation, nor their retribution in the hope of a resurrection. He argues farther, Edamus et bibamus, If there be no resurrection, let us dissolve ourselves into the pleasures of this world, and enjoy them; why so too I Have we not stories full of exemplar men, that might be our patterns for sobriety, and continency, and denying themselves the sweetnesses of this life, and yet never placed consolation, nor retribution upon a resurrection? Would not St. Paul's own Pondus gloria, That there is an exceeding weight of eternal glory attending our afflictions, serve our turn, though that were determined in the salvation of the soul, though there were no resurrection of the body 2 It is strongly and wisely said by Aquinas, Derogant fidei Christiana rationes non cogentes; To offer reasons for any article of faith, which will not convince a man therein, derogates from the dignity of that article. Therefore we must consider St. Paul's reasons as they were intended; to Christians, that had received the article of the resurrection into their faith before; and then, as God gave Adam a body immediately from himself, but then maintained and nourished that body by other means; so the Holy Ghost by St. Paul gives the article of the resurrection to our faith positively, and then enables us to declare to our own consciences, and to other men's understandings, that we believe no impossible thing, in believing the resurrection: for as it is the candle that lights me, but yet I take a lanthom to defend that candle from the wind; so my faith assures me of the resurrection, but these reasons and illustrations assist that faith. And so we have done with our first part, how this assurance acorues unto us, and pass in order to the other, the consolation which we have from this resurrection of the body, not only in itself, but as it gives us a sense of the spiritual resurrection of our souls from sin, by grace.

We are assured then of a resurrection, and we see how that assurance grows. But of what? Of all, body and soul too; for, Quod cadit, resurgit, says St. Hierome, all that is fallen, receives a resurrection; and that is suppositum, says the school, that is, the person, the whole man, not taken in pieces, soul alone, or body alone, but both. For as Damascene expresses the same that St. Hierome intends, Resurrectio est ejus quod cecidit iterata surrectio, The resurrection is a new rising of that which fell; and man fell. A man is not saved, a sinner is not redeemed, I am not received into heaven, if my body be left out; the soul and the body concurred to the making of a sinner, and body and soul must concur to the making of a saint. So it is in the last resurrection, so it is in the first, which we consider now, by grace from sin; and therefore we receive into comparison, triplicem casum, a threefold fall, and a threefold resurrection, as in the natural and bodily death, so in the spiritual death of the soul also: for first, in natural death, there is casus in separationem, the man, the person falls into a separation, a divorce of body and soul; and the resurrection from this fall is by re-union, the soul and body are re-united at the last day. A second fall in natural death, is casus in dissolutionem, the dead body falls by putrefaction into a dissolution, into atoms and grains of dust; and the resurrection from this fall, is by re-efformation: God shall re-compact and re-compile those atoms and grains of dust, into that body, which was before: and then a third fall in natural death, is casus in dispersionem, this man being fallen into a divorce of body and soul, this body being fallen into a dissolution of dust, this dust falls into a dispersion, and is scattered unsensibly, undiscernibly upon the face of the earth; and the resurrection from this death, is by way of re-collection; God shall recall and re-collect all these atoms, and grains of dust, and recompact that body, and re-unite that soul, and so that resurrection is accomplished: and these three falls, into a divorce, into a separation, into a dispersion; and these three resurrections, by re-union, by re-efformation, by re-collecting, we shall also find in our present state, the spiritual death of the soul by sin.

First then, the first fall in the spiritual death, is the divorce of body and soul; that whereas God hath made the body to be the organ of the soul, and the soul to be the breath of that organ, and bound them to a mutual relation to one another, man sometimes withdraws the soul from the body, by neglecting the duties of this life, for imaginary speculations; and oftener withdraws the body from the soul, which should be subject to the soul, but does maintain a war; and should be a wife to the soul, and does stand out in a divorce.

Now the resurrection from this first fall into a divorce, is, seriously and wisely, that is, both piously and civilly to consider, that man is not a soul alone, but a body too; that man is not placed in this world only for speculation; he is not sent into this world to live out of it, but to live in it; Adam was not put into Paradise, only in that Paradise to contemplate the future Paradise, but to dress and to keep the present; God did not breathe a soul towards him, but into him; not in an obsession, but a possession; not to travel for knowledge abroad, but to direct him by counsel at home; not for ecstasies, but for an inherence; for when it was come to that, in St. Paul, we see it is called a rapture, he was not in his proper station, nor his proper motion; He was transported into the third heaven: but as long as we are in our dwelling upon earth, though we must love God with all our soul, yet it is not with our soul alone; our body also must testify and express our love, not only in a reverential humiliation thereof, in the dispositions, and postures, and motions, and actions of the body, when we present ourselves at God's service, in his house, but in the discharge of our bodily duties, and the sociable offices of our callings, towards one another: not to run away from that service of God, by hiding ourselves in a superstitious monastery, or in a secular monastery, in our own house, by an unprofitable retiredness, and absenting ourselves from the necessary businesses of this world: not to avoid a calling, by taking none: not to make void a calling, by neglecting the due offices thereof. In a word, to understand, and to perform in the best measure we can, the duties of the body and of the soul, this is the resurrection from the first fall, the fall into a divorce of body and soul. And for the advancing of this knowledge, and the facilitating of this performance of these duties, be pleased a little to stop upon the consideration of both, both of spiritual and divine, and then of secular and sociable duties, so far as concerns this subject in hand.

First for the duties of the soul, God was never out of Christ's sight; he was always with him, always within him, always he himself; yet Christ, at some times, applied himself in a nearer distance, and stricter way of prayer to God than at other times. Christ's whole life was a continual abstinence, a perpetual sobriety, yet Christ proposed, and proportioned a certain time, and a certain number of days for a particular fast, upon particular occasion. This is the harmony, this is the resurrection of a Christian, in this respect, that his soul be always so fixed upon God, as that he do nothing but with relation to his glory principally, and habitually; that he think of God, at all times, but that, besides that, he sepose sometimes, to think of nothing but God: that he pray continually, so far, as to say nothing, to wish nothing, that he would not be content God should hear, but that, besides that, he,sepose certain fixed times for private prayer in his chamber, and for public prayer in the congregation. For, though it be no where expressly written, that Christ did pray in the congregation, or in company, yet, all that Christ did, is not written; and it is written, that he went often into the temples, and into the synagogues; and it is written, that even the Pharisee, and the publican, that went to those places, went thither to pray. But howsoever, Christ was never so alone, but that if he were not in the church, the church was in him; all Christians were in him, as all men were in Adam.

This then is our first resurrection, for the duty that belongs to the soul, that the soul do at all times think upon God, and at sometimes think upon nothing but him; and for that, which in this respect belongs to the body, that we neither enlarge, and

pamper it so, nor so adorn and paint it, as though the soul required a spacious, and specious palace to dwell in. Of that excess, Porphyry, who loved not Christ nor Christians, said well, out of mere morality, that this enormous fattening and enlarging our bodies by excessive diet, was but a shovelling of more and more fat earth upon our souls to bury them deeper: Dum corpus augemus, mortaliores efficimur, says he, The more we grow, the more mortal we make ourselves, and the greater sacrifice we provide for death, when we gather so much flesh: with that elegancy speaks he, speaking out of nature, and with this simplicity and homeliness speaks St. Hierome, speaking out of grace, Qui Christum desiderat, et illo pane vescitur, de quam preciosis cibis stercus conficiat, non quwrit, He that can relish Christ, and feed upon that bread of life, will not be so diligent to make precious dung, and curious excrements, to spend his purse, or his wit, in that, which being taken into him, must pass by so ignoble a way from him.

The flesh that God hath given us, is affliction enough; but the flesh that the devil gives us, is affliction upon affliction; and to that, there belongs a woe. Per tenuitatem assimilamur Deo, says the same author; The attenuation, the slenderness, the deliverance of the body from the incumbrance of much flesh, gives us some assimilation, some conformity to God, and his angels; the less flesh we carry, the liker we are to them, who have none: that is still, the less flesh of our own making: for, for that flesh, which God, and his instrument, nature, hath given us, in what measure, or proportion soever, that does not oppress us, to this purpose, neither shall that be laid to our charge; but the flesh that we have built up by curious diet, by meats of provocation, and witty sauces, or by a slothful and drowsy negligence of the works of our calling. All flesh is sinful flesh; sinful so, as that it is the mother of sin, it occasions sin; natural flesh is so; but this artificial flesh of our own making, is sinful so, as that it is also the daughter of sin; it is, indeed, the punishment of former sins, and the occasion of future.

The soul then requires not so large, so vast a house of sinful flesh, to dwell in: but yet on the other side, we may not by inordinate abstinencies, by indiscreet fastings, by inhuman flagellations, by unnatural macerations, and such disciplines, as God doth not command, nor authorize, so wither, and shrink, and contract the body, as though the soul were sent into it, as into a prison, or into fetters, and manacles, to wring, and pinch, and torture it. Nihil interest, says St. Hierome, It is all one whether thou kill thyself at one blow, or be long in doing it, if thou do it. All one, whether thou fall upon thine own sword, or starve thyself with such a fasting, as thou discernest to induce that effect: for, says he, Deseendit a dignitate viri, et notas insaniw incurrit, He departs from that dignity, which God hath imprinted in man, in giving him the use, and the dominion over his creatures, and he gives the world just occasion to think him mad; and, as Tertullian adds; Respuit datorem, qui datum deserit, He that does not use a benefit, reproaches the benefactor, and he is ungrateful to God, that does not accept at his hands the use of his blessings. Therefore is it accepted as a good interpretation, which is made of Christ's determining his fast in forty days, Ne mi homicida videretw, Lest if he continued it longer, he might have seemed to have killed himself, by being the author of his own death; and so do they interpret aright his Esuriit, that then he began to be hungry, that he began to languish, to faint, to find a detriment in his body; for else, a fasting when a man is not hungry, is no fasting; but then he gave over fasting, when he found the state of his body impaired by fasting.

And therefore those mad doctrines, (so St. Hierome calls them, Notas insania habent) yea those devilish doctrines, (so St. Paul calls them) that forbid certain meats, and that make uncommanded macerations of the body, meritorious, that upon a supposititious story, of a hermit that lived twenty-two years8, without eating anything at all, and upon an impertinent example of their St. Francis, that kept three Lents in the year, which they extol, and magnify in St. Francis, and St. Hierome condemned, and detested in the Montanists, who did so too, have built up those Carthusian rules, that though it appear that that, and nothing but that, would save the patient's life, yet he may not eat flesh, that is a Carthusian, and have brought into estimation those apocryphal and bastardly canons which they father upon the apostles,

8 Abbas Ursperg.

that a man must rather starve, than receive food from the hand of a person excommunicate, or otherwise detected of any mortal sin; and that all that can be done with the alms of such a person, is, that it be spent in wood and coals and other fuel, that so, (as the subtle philosophy of their canon is) it may be burnt, and consumed by fire; for, to save a man's life, it must not be spent upon meat or drink, or such sustentation: these doctrines are not the doctrines of this resurrection, by which, man considered in composite), as he consists of soul and body, by a sober and temperate life, makes his body obsequious, and serviceable to his soul, but yet leaves his soul a body to work in, and an organ to praise God upon, both in a devout humiliation of his body, in God's service, and in a bodily performance of the duties of some calling; for this is our first resurrection A casn separations, from having fallen into a separation of body and soul, for they must serve God jointly together, because God having joined them, man may not separate them, but as God shall re-unite them at the last resurrection, so must we, in our resurrections in this life; and farther we extend not this resurrection, from this separation, this divorce.

The second fall of man in natural death, is Casus in dissolutionem, The man being fallen into a divorce of soul and body, the body falls by putrefaction into a dissolution of dust; and the resurrection from this fall, is, a re-efformation, when God shall recompact that dust into that body. This fall, and this resurrection we have in our spiritual death too: for we fall into daily customs, and continual habits of those sins, and we become not only as that Lazarus in the parable, to have sores upon us, but as that Lazarus in the Gospel, that was dead; Dominejam fatemus, et quatriduani sumus, Lord we stink in thy nostrils, and we have been buried four days; all the four changes of our life, infancy, youth, middle age, and old, have been spent and worn out in a continual, and uninterrupted course of sin. In which, we shall best consider our fall, and best prepare our resurrection, by looking from whence we are fallen, and by what steps; and they are three.

First, perdidimus nardum nostram, we have lost the sweet savour of our own spikenard; for so the spouse says, Nardus mea dedit odor em suum": My spikenard hath given forth her sweet savour. There was a time, when we had a spikenard, and a sweet savour of our own, when our own natural faculties, in that state as God infused them, in Adam, had a power to apprehend, and lay hold upon the graces of God. Man hath a reasonable soul capable of God's grace, so hath no creature but man; man hath natural faculties, which may be employed by God in his service, so hath no creature but man. Only man was made so, as that he might be better; whereas all other creatures were but to consist in that degree of goodness, in which they entered. Miserable fall! Only man was made to mend, and only man does grow worse; only man was made capable of a spiritual sovereignty, and only man hath enthralled, and mancipated himself to a spiritual slavery. And Perdidimus possibilitatem bonV, We have lost that good and all possibility of recovering it, by ourselves, in losing nardum nostram, the savour of our spikenard, the life, and vigour of our natural faculties, to supernatural uses. For though the soul be forma hominis, it is but materia Dei; The soul may be the form of man, for without that, Man is but a carcase; but the soul is but the matter upon which God works; for, except our soul receive another soul, and be inanimated with grace, even the soul itself is but a carcase. And for this, we have lost nardum nostram, the odour, the verdure, the vigour of those powers, in possession whereof God put us into this world. But there is a step in our fall, lower than this.

We have not only lost nardum nostram, the use of onr own faculties, in original sin, but we have lost also unguentum Domini, the sweet savour, and the holy perfume of that ointment which the Lord hath poured out upon us. For, as the spouse says in the same chapter, Oleum effusum nomen ejus, His name is an ointment poured out upon us11; The name of Christ hath been shed upon us all in our baptism, and that hath made us Christians; and the merits and promises of Christ have been shed upon us all, in the preaching of his word, and that hath declared us to be Christians; the ointment is Super caput, super barbam, super oram vestimenti, as David speaks"; It is fallen upon the head; we have had, and have religious princes; and upon the beard,

° Cant. i. 12. >° Augustine. "Cant. i. 3. >s Psalm cxxxiii. 2.

the beard of Aaron; we have had, and have (no time, no church ever more, ever so much) a religious clergy, vigilancy in the superior, laboriousness in the inferior clergy ; and it is fallen upon the skirts of the garment; the love, the desire, the hunger of hearing is fallen upon the lowest, and upon all our congregations, oleum effusum nomen ejus, his name, and his ordinance is poured out upon us all; but, as the spouse says there, Adolescent ulee dilexerunt te, Only the virgins have loved thee; and where are those virgins? Which of us have preserved that virginity, that integrity? Which of us hath not married himself to some particular sin; Which of us hath not multiplied his fornications, and yet is not satisfied I We have all lost, nardum nostram, that which we had at first in Adam, and that which hath been offered to us since in Christ. And this is our second step in this fall; but there is a lower than this.

We come to lose odorem agri, the sweet savour of the field itself. As Isaac said of his son, The smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the Lord hat/i blessed'3, so the Lord of heaven, as he smelt a savour of rest from the sacrifice of Noah, may have smelt from us the savour of medicinal herbs, of remorse, and repentance, and contrition, and detestation of former sins, and the savour of odoriferous, and fragrant, and aromatical herbs, works worthy of repentance, amendment of life, edification of others, and zeal to his glory, and yet we may relapse into former sins, or fall into new, and come to savour only of the earth, in a worldly covetousness, or to savour of the flesh, in a licentious filthiness; we may have received the good seed, and dured for awhile14, as St. Matthew expresses Christ's words; Received it, and believed it for awhile15, as St. Luke expresses them, and then depart from the goodness which God's grace had formerly wrought in us, and from the grace of God itself.

Now to this lamentable state, belong those fearful words of the apostle, That for a man that sins thus, there remaineth no more sacrifice u; and those also, in another place, That for such a man it is impossible, impossible to be renewed11. Some of the fathers, out of a holy tenderness, and compassion, have mollified this

13 Gen. xxvii. 27. 1* Matt. xiii. 18. 15 Luke viii. 13.
16 Heb. x. 2. W Heb, vi. 4.

I

impossibile with a difficile; It is impossible, say they, that is, il is very hard; very hard for him that hath been in God's service, and is run away, to return to it again. For, as Tertullian say* elegantly in that case, Judicato pronunciavit, That sinner, say* he, hath proceeded solemnly, and judicially, and hath heard wha both sides could say, what grace could say, and what sin, wha; God could say, and what Satan, and now he hath decreed tb cause against grace and against God, and declared the other sice to be in the right, because he hath applied himself to the othsr side. But there is more in this impossibile, than difficile: it is not only hard, but truly impossible: so, as it is impossible for God 'o lie'B, (so the apostle speaks) so as it is impossible to take away sn by the blood of bulls and goats1S, (so he speaks) so as it is impesible to please God without faith*", (so he speaks) so impossible is it for this man to be renewed. Impossibile est, non speres quid impossibile, says St. Chrysostom, It is impossible, never hope fcr that which is impossible. For (as that father exalts this impassibility) Non dixit, non decet, non prodest, non licet: God hath not said, It becomes not the majesty, and the constancy of mr proceedings to renew such a man; he says not so, non decet; he doth not say, it conduces not to my ends, nor to my manner of government, it would not be good for the public, for the church, for the rest of my servants, who might be scandalized if I should exact so much as I do at their hands, and renew such a man; he says not so, non prodest; he doth not say, non licet; I cannot do it in justice, it cannot consist with my laws, and my edicts, by which I have proclaimed, That with the froward I will grow froward, and harden their hearts that oppose themselves against me; he doth not say so, non licet; for to all these (it stands not with my ways, non decet; or it conduces not to my ends, non prodest; or it consists not with my justice, non licet) mercy would still present dispensations; but it is expressly, directly impossibile, impossible.

It is true, that the hardness of this saying put the fathers to hard expositions. The greater part by much, of them who find themselves put to a necessity of admitting an impossibility, (for as I told you before, some of them mollify and supple the impos

18 Chap. vi. >° Chap. x. *> Chap. xi.

ability into a difficulty) place the impossibility in this, That it is inpossible for such a man to be renewed by baptism, as he was rmewed before: for in those primitive times, though they e:cluded not children, yet the greatest part of them who were hptized, were such as understood their case, persons of discreton, such as had spent many months, many times many years, ii studying and in practising the Christian religion, and then ware baptized; and if these men (say those fathers) fell after this, itwas impossible to be renewed that way, impossible that they sbuld have a second baptism: and it is scarce mannerly, scarce sa'e to depart from so many as meet in this interpretation of this inpossibility: for they all intend that which St. Chrysostom expresses most plainly, Dixit impossibile, ut in desperationem inluceret; the apostle says it is impossible, that he might bring uf before-hand into a kind of desperation; a desperation of this k nd, that there was absolutely no hope of a possibility of renewing, as they were renewed before, that is, by baptism.

But because at this time when the apostle writ, that question, which troubled the church so much after, in St. Cyprian's time, of re-baptization, was not moved at all, neither doth it appear, nor is it likely, that any that fell so, put his hopes upon renewing by a second baptism ; there is something else in this impossibility than so. And that in one word is, that the falling intended here, is not a falling a nardo nostra, from the savour of our own spikenard, the good use of our own faculties, lost in original sin, nor a falling ab nnguento Domini, that though the perfume an incense of the name of Christ, and the offer of his merits be shed upon us here, that doth not restrain us from falling into some sins, but this falling is, as it is expressed, a falling away, away from Christ in all his ordinances; an undervaluing, a despising of those means which he hath established for the renewing of a broken soul, which is the making a mock of the Son of God, and the treading the blood of the covenant under foot. When Christ hath ordained but one way for the renewing of a soul, the conveyance of his merits, in preaching the word, and the sealing thereof, in applying the sacraments, to that man that is fallen so, as to refuse that, as it is impossible to live, if a man refuse to eat, impossible to recover, if a man refuse physic, so it is impossible for him to be renewed, because God hath notified to us but om way, and he refuses that. So this is a true impossibility, and yei limited too; for though it be impossible to us, by any means imparted to us, or to our dispensing, and stewardship, yet shall anything be impossible to God? God forbid; for, even from this death, and this depth there is a resurrection.

As from the loss of our spikenard, our natural faculties in original sin, we have a resurrection in baptism, and from the loss of the ointment of the Lord, the offer of his graces, in these meetings, and the falling into some actual sins, for all that assistance, we have a resurrection in the other sacrament; so when we have lost the savour of the field, those degrees of goodness, and holiness which we had, and had declared before, when we are fallen from all present sense of the means of a resurrection, yet there may be a resurrection wrapped up in the good purposes of God upon that man, which, unless he will himself, shall not be frustrated, not evacuated, not disappointed. Though he have faetorem pro odore, as the prophet speaks8', That instead of the sweet savour, which his former holy life exhaled and breathed up, he be come now to stink in the sight of the church, (and howsoever God may have a good savour from his own work, from those holy purposes which he hath upon them, which lie in God's bosom, yet from his present sins, and from the present testimony and evidence that the church gives against him, as a present sinner, he must necessarily stink in the nostrils of God too) yet, as in the resurrection of the body, it shall come, when we shall know not of it, so when this poor dead, putrefied soul hath no sense of it, and perchance, little or no disposition towards it, the efficacy of God's purpose shall break out, and work in him a resurrection: and this St. Chrysostom takes to be intended in that which is said in the same place to the Hebrews, That that earth which drinketh in the rain, and bringeth forth nothing but briars, is maledicto proxima, nearest to be accursed**, that man is nearest to be a reprobate; but yet, says he, Vide* quantum habet consolationem, We apprehend a blessed consolation in this, that it is said, near a curse, near reprobation, and no worse; for, Qui prope est, procul esse poterit, says he, That soul which is but near

81 Isaiah iii. 24. "* Heb. vi.

destruction, may weather that mischief, and grow to be far from it, and out of danger of it.

It is true, this man hath lost his paratum cor meum; he cannot say, his heart is preparedTM; that he hath lost in original sin; this man hath lost his confirmatum cor meum, he cannot say, his heart is established**; that hath been offered to him in these exercises, but it hath not prevailed upon him. He hath lost his variis odoribus delectatum cor the delight which his heart heretofore had in the savour of the field, in those good actions, in which formerly he exercised himself, and now is fallen from: but yet there may be cor novum86, a new heart, a heart which is yet in God's bosom, and shall be transplanted into his; a duplicate, an exemplification of God's secret purpose to be manifested, and revealed by the Spirit of God, in his good time, upon him. And this may work, In insigni et vehementi mutatione*1, In such an evidence, and demonstration of itself, as he shall know it to be that, because it shall not work as a circumcision, but as an excision, not as a lopping off, but as a rooting up, not by mending him, but by making him a new creature; he shall not grow less riotous than before, for so a sentence in a star-chamber, or any other criminal court for a riot, might be a resurrection to him; nor less voluptuous, for so, poverty in his fortune, or insipidness and tastelessness in his palate might be a resurrection to him; nor less licentious, for so age or sickness, nor less quarrelsome, for so blows, and oppression might be a resurrection to him. But when in a rectified understanding he can but apprehend, that such a resurrection there may be, nay there is for him; it shall grow up to a holy confidence, established by the sensible effects thereof, that he shall not only discontinue his former acts, and devest his former habits of sin, but produce acts, and build up habits, contrary to his former habits, and former acts, for this is the resurrection from this second fall, in dissolutionem, into the dissolution of particular sins.

Now, after all this, there is in natural death, a third fall, casus in dispersionem, the man is fallen in separationem, into a divorce of body and soul, the body is fallen in dissolutionem, to putrefac

83 PsaL Lvii. 7. 'w Psal. cxii. 7. "Prov. xvii. 9.

85 PsaL Li. 10. «? Chrysostom.

tion, and dissolution in dust, and then this dust is fallen in dispersionem, into a dispersion, and scattering over the earth, as God threatens, / will break the wicked as small as dust, and scatter them with the wind**; for after such a scattering, no power, but of God only, can re-collect those grains of dust, and re-compact them into a body, and re-inanimate them into a man. And such a state, such a dispersion, doth the heart and soul of an habitual sinner undergo; for, as the eyes of a fool are in the corners of the earth", so is the heart and soul of a sinner. The wanton and licentious man, sighs out his soul, weeps out his soul, swears out his soul, in every place, where his lust, or his custom, or the glory of victory, in overcoming, and deluding, puts him upon such solicitations. In the corrupt taker, his soul goes out, that it may leave him insensible of his sin, and not trouble him in his corrupt bargain; and in a corrupt giver, ambitious of preferment, his soul goes out with his money, which he loves well, but not so well as his preferment: this year his soul and his money goes out upon one office, and next year, more soul, and more money upon another; he knows how his money will come in again; for they will bring it, that have need of his corruptness in his offices; but where will this man find his soul, thus scattered upon every woman corruptly won, upon every office corruptly usurped, upon every quillet corruptly bought, upon every fee corruptly taken?

Thus it is, when a soul is scattered upon the daily practise of any one predominant, and habitual sin; but when it is indifferently scattered upon all, how much more is it so? In him, that swallows sins in the world, as he would do meats at a feast; passes through every dish, and never asks physician the nature, the quality, the danger, the offence of any dish: that baits at every sin that rises, and pours himself into every sinful mould he meets: that knows not when he began to spend his soul, nor where, nor upon what sin he laid it out; no, nor whether he have, whether ever he had any soul, or no; but hath lost his soul so long ago, in rusty, and in incoherent sins, (not sins that produced one another, as in David's case, and yet that is a fearful state, that con tenation of sins, that pedigree of sins, but in

■ Psal. s' Prov. xvii. 24.

sins which he embraces, merely out of an easiness to sin, and not out of a love, no, nor out of a temptation to that sin in particular) that in these incoherent sins hath so scattered his soul, as that he hath not soul enough left, to seek out the rest. And therefore David makes it the title of the whole Psalm, Domine ne disperdas, 0 Lord do not scatter us3": and he begins to express his sense of God's judgments, in the next Psalm, so, 0 Lord thou hast cast us out, thou hast scattered us, turn again unto us: for even from this aversion, there may be conversion, and from this last and lowest fall, a resurrection. But how I

In the general resurrection upon natural death, God shall work upon this dispersion of our scattered dust, as in the first fall, which is the divorce, by way of re-union, and in the second, which is putrefaction, by way of re-efformation; so in this third, which is dispersion, by way of re-collection; where man's buried flesh hath brought forth grass, and that grass fed beasts, and those beasts fed men, and those men fed other men, God that knows in which box of his cabinet all this seed-pearl lies, in what corner of the world every atom, every grain of every man's dust sleeps, shall re-collect that dust, and then re-compact the body, and then re-inanimate that man, and that is the accomplishment of all.

In this resurrection, from this dispersion and scattering in sin, the way is by re-collection too: that this sinner recollect himself, and his own history, his own annals, his own journals, and call to mind where he lost his way, and with what tenderness of conscience, and holy startling he entered into some sins at first, in which he is seared up now, and whereas his triumph should have been, in a victory over the flesh, he is come to a triumph in his victory over the Spirit of God, and glorious in having overcome the Holy Ghost, and brought his conscience to an insensibleness of sin: if he can recollect himself thus, and cast up his account so, if he can say to God, Lord, we have sold ourselves for nothing, he shall hear God say to him, as he does there in the prophet, You have sold yourselves for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money*1. But how is this re-collecting wrought I

God hath intimated the way, in that vision to the prophet . Ezekiel88: he brings the prophet into a field of dead bones, and

30 Psalm i.viii. 81 Isaiah lii. 3. 38 Ezek. xxxvii.

dry bones, Sicca vehementer, (as it is said there) As dry as this dust which we speak of: and he asks him, Fili hominis, Thou that art but the Son of man, and must judge humanly, Putasne vivent ossa ista? Dost thou think that these bones can live? The prophet answers, Domine tu nosti, Thou Lord, who knowest whose names are written in the book of life, and whose are not; whose bones are wrapped up in the decree of thy election, and whose are not, knowest whether these bones can live, or no; for, but in the efficacy and power of that decree, they cannot. Yes, they shall, says God Almighty; and they shall live by this means, Dices eis, Thou shalt say unto them, 0 ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord: as dry, as desperate, as irremediable as they are in themselves, God shall send his servants unto them, and they shall hear them: and, as it is added in that place, Prophetante me, foetus sonitus, et commotio, As I prophesied, there was a noise and a shaking; as whilst Peter spake, The Holy Ghost fell upon all them that heard the word; so whilst the messengers of God speak in the presence of such sinners, there shall be a noise, and a commotion, a horror of their former sins, a wonder how they could provoke so patient, and so powerful a God, a sinking down under the weight of God's judgments, a flying up to the apprehension of his mercies, and this noise and commotion in their souls, shall be settled with that Gospel in that prophet, Dabo super ws nemos, I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath into you, and you shall live, and ye shall know that I am the Lord; God shall restore them to life, and more, to strength, and more, to beauty, and comeliness, acceptable to himself in Christ Jesus.

Your way is re-collecting; gather yourselves into the congregation, and communion of saints in these places; gather your sins into your memory, and pour them out in humble confessions, to that God, whom they have wounded; gather the crumbs under his table, lay hold upon the gracious promises, which by our ministry he lets fall upon the congregation now; and gather the seals of those promises, whensoever, in a rectified conscience, his Spirit bears witness with your spirit, that you may be worthy

VOL. I. 2 C

receivers of him in his sacrament; and this re-collecting shall be your resurrection.

Beatus qui habet partem, says St. John, Blessed is he that hath part in the first resurrection, for on such the second death hath no power13. He that rises to this judgment of re-collecting, and of judging himself, shall rise with a cheerfulness, and stand with a confidence, when Christ Jesus shall come in the second: and, Quando exacturusest insecundo, quoddedit inprimo3*, When Christ shall call for an account, in that second judgment, how he hath husbanded those graces, which he gave him for the first, he shall make his possession of this first resurrection, his title, and his evidence to the second. When thy body, which hath been subject to all kinds of destruction here; to the destruction of a flood, in catarrhs, and rheums, and dropsies, and such distillations, to the destruction of a fire, in fevers, and frenzies, and such conflagrations, shall be removed safely and gloriously above all such distempers, and malignant impressions, and body and soul so united, as if both were one spirit in itself, and God so united to both, as that thou shalt be the same spirit with God. God began the first world, but upon two, Adam and Eve: the second world, after the flood, he began upon a greater stock, upon eight reserved in the ark; but when he establishes the last and everlasting world in the last resurrection, he shall admit such a number, as that none of us who are here now, none that is, or hath, or shall be upon the face of the earth, shall be denied in that resurrection, if he have truly felt this; for grace accepted, is the infallible earnest of glory.