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terest. And indeed, were such great Events to be guided by human Counsels, a Nation might be destroyed before they could agree in what Method, or by what Means to be saved ; fo variously are Men drawn by their Passions and their Interest, that it is very difficult for them to concur in preserving what all are equally concerned to preserve. In these Circumstances, it is very natural for Men to dwell upon the melancholy Prospect, and to forebode that Ruin to themselves and their Country, which seems to be the just Consequence of such distracted Counfels: but they ought to reflect, that there is one higher than all, who can still the Rage of the People, and bring Peace and Safety out of Tumult and Disorder, with as inuch Ease as he produced Light out of Darkness, when he said, Let there be Light, and there was Light. Were it not for the Comfort arising from this providential Care of God over the World, the best Thing a Wise Man could do for himself, would be to get out of it as soon as he could ; the only Way to secure himself from the Miseries and Calamities which Men by their Folly and their Wickedness are perpetually drawing down upon themselves and others. Nay, could we depend upon this Care and Protection of God no further than our own Merits would justify our Expectation, we might have Reason still to despond. But as there is another Time in which all Men shall yield an Account of their own Doings; and as God has greater Views oftentimes in faving and destroying Nations, than punishing or rewarding the present Inhabitants ; and as Mercy and Goodness incline him to deal graciously with Sinners, in allowing them further Means and Opportunities of Repentance and Amendment, we may reasonably hope from his Mercy and Goodness to be more favourably dealt with, than our Consciences, if strictly examined, can give us Ground to expect. And if ever these Hopes are justifiable, then most certainly they are, when the Honour of God is immediately concerned in the Event; and when the Truth of that holy Religion which Christ sealed with his own Blood, is . Part of the Controversy. The People of Ifrael had as little to boast of on their own Behalf as other Nations; but they were chosen by God to bear his Name, to be Witnesses of his Truth in the dark Ages of the World, to prepare the way for the coming



of our Lord and Master; and though they were often afflicted, yet they were as often restored, till at last they were utterly rejected for denying that great Prophet, for whose Sake, and for the Completion of the Prophecies relating to him, they had been so ofa ten and so long preserved. · These are the Observations I had to make to you from the Words of the Text. The Application of them to ourselves, is what I believe every Body sees, as well as myself. And yet I beg your Patience, whilst with all Truth and Sincerity I discharge my Dua ty and Conscience as a Minister of this reformed Church, now openly attacked by its professed and inveterate Enemies. Since the Beginning of the Reformation in this Kingdom, we never had so good a Prospect of a firm Establishment of the Protestant Religion, as at this Time; and yet I verily think we never had less Sense of it ;: our Deliverance is near us, but we understand it not. Whilst we have been striving together about Things, however dear to us, yet still of less Consequence most certainly than our Liberty and Religion, we have been in Danger of being swallowed up by the common Enemy; and the People, never till now infen

fible of the Fears of Popery, have stood by unconcerned, seeming, as it were, to invite that Slavery and Oppression, which coft their Forefathers so much Blood and Treasure to get rid of. Could you have thought that this Soil, so often watered and enriched by the Blood of Martyrs, shed by the cruel Hands of Popish Tyranny, so often miraculously saved by Providence from Ro-, man Slavery and Superstition, would ever yield such Fruit as this? That England, famed throughout the World for the Bulwark of the Protestant Religion; hated by her · Enemies, and envied even by her Friends,

for the best established Church in Christendom, should so far forget herself, and the God who saved her, as to look with any Patience upon those Chains from which she was so lately delivered. It is still more surprising, that this should happen at the very Time when Providence seems to have laid the best Foundation for our Peace and Security, by fettling a Protestant Prince in the Throne of these Kingdoms, happy in Heirs to fucceed him in his Crowns, and to perpetuate the Blefling of Liberty and purc Religion to these Nations. Whatever we think of this Advantage, our Enemies cer

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tainly judge right of it; they foresee, that if this Settlement prevails, their Hopes are at an End, and therefore they are ready to hazard all to disturb and overthrow it: and it seems to have been the main Point of the Policy of the Court of Rome, with Respect to these Kingdoms, from the earliest Times of the Reformation, to secure themselves against a Succession of Protestant Princes. When we have had a Prospect of this Happiness, then we have been attacked with their utmost Fury; Rome has plyed all her Engines to prevent this Foundation being laid amongst us, of lasting Peace and Security. At other Times, when the Succession has been doubtful, and she had any Hopes of seeing one of her own Communion exalted, she has moved by gentler Steps, and her Fury has been abated by the Hope of swaying the Sceptre of a Son of her own. - If we take a short View of this period, it will help not only to convince us of the Truth of this Observation, but also to give us a juft Prospect of the Security and Happiness, which are now prepared for us, if we do not obstinately shut our Eyes against the Things which make for our Peace. The Reformation had its first Rise here

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