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SERM. concurrence of our will; our works not being our works, XXXVI. if they do not issue from our will; and our will not being

our will, if it be not free: to compel it were to destroy it, together with all the worth of our virtue and obedience: wherefore the Almighty doth suffer himself to be withstood, and beareth repulses from us; nor commonly doth he master our will otherwise, than by its own fpontaneous conversion and submission to him b: if ever we be conquered, as we shall share in the benefit, and wear a crown; so we must join in the combat, and partake of the victory, by subduing ourselves : we must take the yoke upon us ; for God is only served by volunteers; he summoneth us by his word, he attracteth us by his grace, but we must freely come unto him.

Our will indeed, of all things, is most our own; the only gift, the most proper sacrifice we have to offer ; which therefore God doth chiefly desire, doth most highly prize, doth most kindly accept from us. Seeing then our duty chiefly moveth on this hinge, the free submission and resignation of our will to the will of God; it is this practice, which our Lord (who came to guide us in the way to happiness, not only as a teacher by his word and excellent doctrine, but as' a leader, by his actions and perfect example) did especially set before us, as in the constant tenor of his life, so particularly in that great exigency which occasioned these words, wherein, renouncing and deprecating his own will, he did express an entire submission to God's will, a hearty complacence therein, and a serious desire that it might take place.

For the fuller understanding of which case, we may consider, that our Lord, as partaker of our nature, and in all things (bating fin) like unto us, had a natural human will, attended with senses, appetites, and affections, apt from objects incident to receive congruous impressions of pleasure and pain; so that whatever is innocently grateful and pleasant to us, that he relished with delight, and

6 Επεί τέτο και αυτά διαβάλλει τα αγαθά ει μη τοιαύση αυτών έσιν ή φύσις, ως & {xóvrus a poodga peeixse zúgov pxelv togańs, Chrys, in 1 Cor. Orat. 2.

thence did incline to embrace; whatever is distasteful and SERM. afflictive to us, that he resented with grief, and thence XXXVI. was moved to eschew: to this probably he was liable in a degree beyond our ordinary rate; for that in him nature was most perfect, his complexion very delicate, his temper exquisitely found and fine ; for fo we find, that by how much any man's constitution is more found, by so much he hath a smarter gust of what is agreeable or offenfive to nature : if perhaps sometimes infirmity of body, or distemper of foul (a favage ferity, a stupid dulness, a fondness of conceit, or stiffness of humour, fupported by wild opinions, or vain hopes) may keep men from being thus affe&ed by sensible objects ; yet in him pure nature did work vigorously, with a clear apprehension and lively sense, according to the design of our Maker, when into our constitution he did implant those paffive faculties, difposing objects to affect them so and so, for our need and advantage; if this be deemed weakness, it is a weakness connected with our nature, which he therewith did take, and with which, as the Apostle saith, he was encompassed.'Eri

τος περίκοι Such a will our Lord had, and it was requisite that he should

ται ασθένειας, . have it, that he thence might be qualified to discharge Heb. v. 2. the principal instances of obedience, for procuring God's favour to us, and for setting an exact pattern before us; for God imposing on him duties to perform, and dispenfing accidents to endure, very cross to that natural will, in his compliance and acquiescence thereto, his obedience was thoroughly tried; his virtue did shine most brightly; therefore, as the Apostle faith, he was in all points tempted ; Heb.iv. 15. thence, as to meritorious capacity and exemplary influ. ii. 10, 18. ence, he was perfected through fuffering.

Hence was the whole course of his life and conversation among men so designed, fo modelled, as to be one continual exercise of thwarting that human will, and closing with the divine pleasure: it was predicted of him, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God; and of himfelf he af- Heb. x. 7. firmed, I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, John vi, 3s. but the will of him that sent me: whereas therefore such v.30. iv.34. a practice is little seen in achieving easy matters, or in ad

Psal. xl. 7.

SERM. mitting pleasant occurrences; it was ordered for him, XXXVI. that he should encounter the roughest difficulties, and be

engaged in circumstances most harsh to natural apprehenfion and appetite; so that if we trace the footsteps of his life from the fordid manger to the bloody cross, we can hardly mark any thing to have befallen him apt to satisfy the will of nature. Nature liketh respect, and loatheth contempt; therefore was he born of mean parentage, and in a most homely condition; therefore did he live in no garb, did assume no office, did exercise no power, did meddle in no affairs, which procure to men consideration and regard ; therefore an impostor, a blasphemer, a forcerer, a loose companion, a seditious incendiary, were the titles of honour and the elogies of praise conferred on him ; therefore was he exposed to the lash of every landerous, every scurrilous, every petulant and ungoverned tongue.

Nature doth affect the good opinion and good-will of men, especially when due in grateful return for great courtesy and beneficence; nor doth any thing more grate

thereon, than abuse of kindness: therefore could he (the John vii. 7. world's great Friend and Benefactor) say, the world hateth

me; therefore were those, whom he with so much charity and bounty had instructed, had fed, had cured of diseases, (both corporal and spiritual,) so ready to clamour, and

commit outrage upon him; therefore could he thus exJohn X. 32. postulate, Many good works have I fewed you from my

Father ; for which of those works do ye stone me? There

fore did his kindred Night him, therefore did his difciples John xiii. abandon him, therefore did the grand traitor issue from

his own bosom; therefore did that whole nation, which he chiefly sought and laboured to save, conspire to persecute him, with most rancorous fpite and cruel misufage.

Nature loveth plentiful accommodations, and abhorreth to be pinched with any want: therefore was extreme pe

nury appointed to him ; he had no revenue, no estate, no Matt. iii. certain livelihood, not so much as a house where to lay his 20. xvii. 25. head, or a piece of money to discharge the tax for it; he Luke viii.3. owed his ordinary support to alms, or voluntary benefi

18.

9.

Đix. 35.

Phil. ii. 7.

Mark vi. 6.

cence; he was to seek his food from a fig tree on the way; SERM. and sometimes was beholden for it to the courtesy of XXXVI. Publicans ; Si nuās é Tuxeurs, he was, faith St. Paul, a 2 Cor. viii, beggar for us.

Nature delighteth in ease, in quiet, in liberty: therefore did he spend his days in continual labour, in restless travel, in endless vagrancy, going about and doing good; John iv. 6.

Matt, iv, 23. ever hastening thither, whither the needs of men did call, or their benefit invite; therefore did he take on him the Acts x. 38. form of a servant, and was among his own followers as Luke xxii

. one that ministereth; therefore he pleased not himself, but 27, fuited his demeanour to the state and circumstances of things, complied with the manners and fashions, comported with the humours and infirmities of men.

Nature coveteth good success to its designs and undertakings, hardly brooking to be disappointed and defeated in them: therefore was he put to water dry sticks and to wash Negroes, that is, to instruct a most dull and stu. pid, to reform a most perverse and stubborn generation ; therefore his ardent desires, his solicitous cares, his painful endeavours for the good of men did obtain so little fruit, had indeed a contrary effect, rather aggravating their fins than removing them, rather hardening than turning their hearts, rather plunging them deeper into perdition, than rescuing them from it; therefore so much in vain did he, in numberless miraculous works, display his power and goodness, eonvincing few, converting fewer by them; therefore, although he taught with most power- Luke iv.22, ful authority, with most charming gracefulness, with moft 32. convincing evidence, yet, Who, could he say, hath believed Joh. xii. 38. our report? Though he most earnestly did invite and allure men to him, offering the richest boons that heaven itself could dispense, yet, Ye will not, was he forced to Joh. V. 40. say, come unto me, that ye may be saved : although, with affiduous fervency of affection, he strove to reclaim them from courses tending to their ruin, yet how he prospered, fad experience declareth, and we may learn from that doleful complaint, How often would I have gathered thy Luke xiin children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her 34. xix. 42.

.

35.

SERM. wings, but ye would not ! óx JENýrate, your will did not XXXVI.

concur, your will did not submit.

In fine, natural will seeketh pleasure, and shunneth pain: but what pleasure did he taste? what inclination,

what appetite, what senfe did he gratify? How did he Mark i. 13, feast, or revel? How, but in tedious fastings, in frequent Luke v. 16. hungers, by passing whole nights in prayer and retireJoh. iy. 6, ment for devotion upon the cold mountains ? What Luke vi. 12. sports had he, what recreation did he take, but feeling Matt. xiv. incessant gripes of compassion, and wearisome roving in

quest of the lost theep? In what conversation could he divert himself, but among those, whose doltish incapacity

and forward humour did wring from his patience those Matt. xvii. words, How long shall I be with you ? how long Jhall I 17.

fuffer you? What music did he hear? What but the rattlings of clamorous obloquy, and furious accusations against him? To be desperately maligned, to be infolently mocked; to be styled a king, and treated as a flave; to be spit on, to be buffetted, to be scourged, to be drenched with gall, to be crowned with thorns, to be mailed to a cross; these were the delights which our Lord enjoyed, these the sweet comforts of his life and the notable prosperities of his fortune: such a portion was allotted to him, the which he did accept from God's hand with all patient submission, with perfect contentednefs, with exceeding alacrity, never repining at it, never complaining of it, never flinching from it, or fainting under it; but proceeding on in the performance of all his duty and prosecution of his great designs with undaunted courage, with unwearied industry, with undisturbed tran, quillity and satisfaction of mind.

Had indeed his condition and fortune been otherwise framed; had he come into the world qualified with a noble extraction; had he lived in a fplendid equipage; had he enjoyed å plentiful estate and a fair reputation; had he been favoured and careffed by men; had he found a current of prosperous success; had safety, ease, and pleasure waited on him; where had been the pious refignation of his will, where the precious merit of his

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