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nute that they were thonght ripe and ready to break forth into Action, have been blafted by some invisible Power, by fome secret stroke on a suddain dasht to pieces. The whole Elaborate Machine and well laid Contrivance vanishing immediately and disappearing, like the Fabulous inchanted Castles in a Romance. And then the vain Authors of this Politick Fabrick, disappointed and defeated of their mighty aims, find out at last that they have not all this while been playing the Knaves only, but, which to them is more mortifying, the Fools too: and confirming that of the Son of Sirach, The Knowledge of Wickedneß is not wisdom, nor at any time the Counsel of the Wicked Prudence. Whilft on the other hand, he who always aims at a good end designs nothing but with Sincerity and Righteousness, and prosecutes those designs by none but jult, and allowable, and Righteous means, has all the reason in the World, even God's own Word, to have Hope and Confidence, that Providence will direct, counsel and guide him, and bring a happy Issue to all his just Undertakings. For it is a most undoubted Truth, that the compalling of any Effects depends more upon God and his Providence, than any Human means. The best and like. lyest Preparations, can never bring them about, when He goes not along with them;

and

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and the loweft and most unlikely are fure
to do it, when he do's. Now the way to
have God with us is to Truft in Him and to
Keep his ways.
: If we dare rely on Providence and Trust
God, he will not fail those that trust in him,
but take the tendereft Care of them and
shew himself remarkable in speeding their
matters on. I mean those matters which,
in confiftence with the Designs of his Pro-
vidence, he fees fit fhould take effect ; 'and
.no Means or Methods can bring about any
things else. As there is no Friend or De-
liverer like God, and no Comfort like Hope
in Him; So is there no way to make an In-
tereft with him like confiding in and depend-
ing on Him. But to miftruft God is the way
to disoblige and lose him, and together with
him our own Prosperity and Success too. And
there is no greater Instance of Distrusting
God, than to aim at compassing any Defign
by forfeiting Our Integrity, and betaking
Ourselves to the use of any Means unallow-
able by his most Holy Laws. Our Trust
in Him therefore muft be shew'd by keeping
in his own ways; which when they seem
to have the least of Visible probability, have
the most of Providence; and so to those
that ascribe most to providence must needs
appear the surest way to Success. Wait on the
Lord and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee

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to Inherit the Land. Psal. 37. 34. But if, when
there is no visible Appearance of Succeeding,
or being Safe otherwise, to save ourselves
we step out of God's way, and instead of
what is lawful, betake ourselves to what
feems serviceable and expedients in leaving
the
way

of Innocence, we are like also to leave the way of Success; and when we defert God, God and Providence will desert us. Order thy way aright and trust in him, fays the wise Son of Sirach, but go not aside left you fall

. Ecclus. 2. 6,7: We Thall not only this way be unreleiv'd by the Blessing and Afliftance, but broken and oppos’d most commonly by the just judgment of Provi. dence setting itself against us. For he disappointetb the Deceits of the Crafty, so that their hands cannot perform their Enterprize. He taketh the Wise in their own Craftines, making their Methods bring about what they study'd to avoid, and the Counsel of the froward is carry'd headlong. They meet with Darkneß in the Day time, and grope in the Noon-day as in the Night, ås it is elegantly set forth in the sth Chap. of Job 12, 13, 14. Commit thy Works unto the Lord, says Solomon, and so foall thy Thoughts be establish'd; and his Father before him, Commit thy way unto the Lord, and put thy trust in him, and He fball bring it to paß; and Eliphaz in Job before 'em both, if thou return to the Almighty and make thy Prayer to

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Him, Thou sealt also Decree a thing and it fball be establishid, and the Light ball fbine upon thy ways. Upon which Account allo the satisfaction, that arises to the Honest and Just Dealer upon the good Success of his Undertakings, is infinitely heightend and enhanc'd in its price. For He that in the begining of any Action of Moment has first Commended Himself and Committed his Works to the Lord, and after used the faireft means to accomplish them, looks upon every Business that prospers in his hand, not barely as a Human Success, but as a Divine Benediction ; receives it not as the product of his Industry or Wisdom, but as the Return of his Prayers and the Reward of his Integrity. So that every good thing, Thus obtain'd, comes not single; but, belides its own intrinsick Goodness, brings that with it, which is infinitely more valuable, an afsurance of the Divine Favour and Love. And 'tis That alone that can make the acquisition of any thing, that we most heartily wish or most eagerly pursue, a solid Comfort or real Blelling to us. For the Wicked and Deceitful often may succeed in their crooked and perverse ways; but then, what they think their Happiness, as often proves their Punishment; their very success is a Curse, and as the Wise Man says, The Prosperity of Fools shall Destroy them. For such

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in Solomon's Language are all those that lean upon their own Understanding, and Trust not tbeir Works unto the Lord. That which they with so much Artifice and Cunning, fo much Pains and Labour, have brought about, is at last no more a True Blessing to them, than it is the True Product, as they vainly flatter themselves, of their own Counsel and Wisdom. Alass! all the Best and Wifeft Counsels are nothing without God; much less all the Wiles and Contrivances, and the little Tricks and Deceits of the Wicked. What they Think, and pride themselves in, as the Sole Authors of, (and therefore are really Guilty of all the Iniquity that they intended) is but under the Order and Disposal of an All-controlling tho Invisible Providence. With Him, says Holy Job, is Strength and Wisdom; the Deceiv'd and the Deceiver are bis (Job. 12. 16.) Even when They refift God's Reveald Will, they are fullfilling his Secret Will; and when Voluntarily Rebellious to the One, are in spight of themselves Subservient to the Other; and they wickedly execute,

what his Wisdom, unknown to them, has juftly ordain'd.

Upon a full assurance of this Over-ruling Providential Power, the Righteous Man sets to work: and having taken the Prudentest means that Honesty and Conscience will leç

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