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tice of that more general Caution of the Prophet, Ceafe ye from Man, whose Breath is in his Noftrils, for wherein is he to be accounted of? If. 2. 20.
Upon the whole, to conclude this Point, Invest Man with what Power he wants or defires, and yet if he has not in his Hands the occafions and opportunities of employing it, he is ftill as helpless, in refpect either of the publick or private Needs of Mankind, as if he were the weakest and most impotent Being in the World; for if my Friend or Child is dying, when I am at the diftance of a thousand Miles, what would it avail them or me, if I carried the most infallible Medicine in my Pocket? Or fuppofe the black Confpiracy of this Day, had been known at Conftantinople, the Day or Week before its defign'd Execution, how could the Blow have been prevented by any feasonable discovery from that Quarter? Unless therefore Man could fee from one end of Nature to the other, and command her Motions, and fupply the room of a God upon Earth, he can neither promise himself,nor ought others to expect from him any other degree of
Safety or Protection, from the common
I come now then to fhew, 3dly, That as this Province belongs to God, fo has he given the World frequent Arguments of an Almighty Power in the rescue of his People from the most eminent Dangers. We might refer for the proof of this Truth, to the providential Inftances of Divine Mercy to the Perfons and States of fingle and private Men, for whoever reads the furprizing History of Jofeph's Advancement, of Daniel's Deliverance, or the protection of three condemn'd Perfons, in the midst of the Flames: He that fhall contemplate the Cafe of one Prophet fed and nurs'd by Ravens, and of feveral, fuftain'd and shelter'd in a Cave from the Rage of their Purfuers, or fhall take the pains to follow the Traces of a kinder Providence protecting the Perfons of good Men in all Ages of the World; will have before him the most perfect Landskip of an Almighty Power, Wif dom and Goodness, in conjunction. But fo wide however, is the circle of Omnipotence, fo large and extenfive T 4
the Sphere of Gods Mercy and Goodnefs, that we need not confine our View to particular and private Examples, for God has been in a moft fignal manner the Patron and Guardian of his whole Church, and when it was confin'd to the Jewish Nation His Power was as vifible, and as frequently exercis'd in its Protection and Defence, as his Wifdom was in giving it Laws, and prefcribing the Order and Oeconomy of it; if we take a furvey of the State of this People, when they groan'd under their Egyp tian Servitude, their Fetters feem'd roo ftrong to be broke, because their Tyrant appear'd too big to be con quer'd: But yet Almighty Wifdom contriv'd away for their Efcape, and Almighty Power gave Succefs to it; for by the fame Miracle of Providence, were Gods Enemies deftroy'd, and his Favourites fet at Liberty: And when the fame People were expos'd to an infinite variety of Hazards, in the courfe of a long March thro' a barren Defert, the fame God attended and preferv'd them thro' their whole Journy, fed and fuftain'd them by daily Miracles, and protected them againit the
the rage of Beafts, and the worfe effects of their own Mutiny and Difcontent, till at laft they arriv'd fafe in the Land of Promife: Nor did the protecting Angel then forfake them, when Plenty crown'd their Tables and Milk and Honey flow'd round their Tents, for, in all their Wars with the Heathen Nations, 'twas God ftill that fought their Battles, and went out with their Armies, fo that if they affaulted vaft multitudes with a small handful, or Befieg'd Cities, made by Nature and Art almoft impregnable; the Enemy should be baff'd by their own frights, and their Walls fall down at the found of a Rams-horn; but Providence would find a way to Rescue and Deliver his darling Favourites! And altho' no Records can afford fo many eminent Footsteps of omnipotent Goodnefs, as the facred Writings, yet God has never been wanting in any Period of the World, to the fafety and protection of fuch Kingdoms and States, as profefs'd his Religion, and walk'd in his Fear. 'Tis not perhaps every Eye that can discern the Signatures of Providence in the Government and Defence of fuch large and publick Bodies,
but we may easily affirm, That unless the Lord keep the City, the Watchman waketh but in vain, Pfal. 127. 1. and there could not one Common-Wealth, from the Grecian and Roman, down to these times, have fubfifted on any other Bottom than the preferving Providence of God; at least we of this Kingdom, have abundant Reafon to own, 'tis of the Lord's Mercies that we were not confum'd, when Men, cruel and blood-thirsty Men rose up against us; for not to recount the many memorable Deliverances vouchfaf'd to this Nation, the Signal Rescue of this Day, from the truly Hellish Plot, defign'd by Powder, ought to lie deepeft in our Hearts, and ftand formoft in our Annals too; for the Power of God will appear wonderful in our Deliverance, whether we confider the greatness our Danger, or the feafonableness of our Efcape: As for the Danger it felf, 'twas as formidable, as the Leagues of a fubtle Party, influenc'd by a cruel Religion, and cemented by folemn Vows and Sacraments could make it. One would have thought by their villanous Zeal to accomplish this black Defign, that the Jefuits concern'd in it, had borrow'd