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Now, these lusts are divers lusts,' Tit. iii. 3. It is not one or two that are in the heart, but many. Their name may be legion, for they are many. The flesh, or corrupt nature is a monster with many heads; but there is one law for them all, they must die. Though they be all the birth of one belly, they are very diverse; for our natural corruption turns itself into a thousand shapes. But,

The qualities common to them ail, whereby ye may see more into their nature, are these. They are.

1. Ungodly lusts, Jude 18. There is nothing of God in them, no not so much as in the devil, who is God's creature; but they are none of God's creatures, he disowns them, 1 John ii. 16. They are the creatures of a corrupt heart, generated of it, as vermin of a rotten body, by influence from hell.

2. Hellish lusts, devilish lusts, John viii. 44. They were the devil's before they were our's, and so it is a sorry copy we have to write after. They are eminently in him; and those in whom they are grown to the greatest perfection, are but bunglers at the trade, to the perfection of which he has arrived. They came from him, they are pleasing to him wherever they are, and they like to be with him for ever. more.

8. They are warring and fighting lusts, Jam. iv. 1.

(1.) They war against the Spirit wherever it is, Gal. v. 17. They are enemies to grace and the Spirit of grace; and the more they prevail, the kingdom of grace is the lower in the heart. They war against the entrace of grace, and often prevail to keep it out ; like so many burreo's from hell, choaking the word that would bring it in, Mark iv. 19. They war against the actings and exercise of it, till it is often laid by as in a swoon. And they war against the very being of it, which they would destroy if God had not said against it.

(2.) They war against the soul i Pet. ii 11. and will ruin it, if they be not ruined. They are no other to the soul than vermin and worms to a dead corpse, that feed on it till it be destroyed. Like a sword they pierce the soul, 1 Tim. vi. 10; like a fire they burn it, Roin. i. 27; and like water they drown it, i Tim. vi. 9; for they are in the heart like the devil in the swine, that will not let the soul rest till it destroy itself.

(3.) They war amongst themselves, Jam. iv. i. For tho'

there is a sweet harmony amongst all the graces, yet lusts may be most contrary one to another. This makes the heart often like a troubled sea, and puts a man on the rack, one lust drawing him one way, and another another way. Pride will put one forward to that which covetousness draws him back from. And the service of lusts must needs be difficult, in that they that serve them serve contrary masters.

4. They are deceitful lusts, Eph. iv. 22. They are the deceivers of the soul, which, by pleasing the corrupt heart, destroy the soul; like Ezekiel's roll, sweet in the mouth, but bitter in the belly. They are a hook to the soul, covered with a taking bait; the silken cords wherewith Satan draws men into destruction.

5. They are hurtful lusts, 1 Tim. vi. 9. They are hurtful to the soul and to the body, to ourselves and others. Being the brood of hell from a corrupt nature, they cannot be harmless ; and therefore where no hurt can be done, they cannot enter, Rev. xxi. ult. The softest of them is as a bier, and sharper than a thorn hedge, and always at length pierce the soul with many sorrows. They never fail to leave a sting behind them in the soul.

6. They are worldly lusts, Tit ii. 12. They have nothing of heaven in them. They range through the world, and feed on that which it does afford; and nothing but what is carnal can please them. They partake of the nature of the serpent, for dust is their meat, and on their belly do they go.

7. They are unsatiable lusts greedy dogs that can never have enough,' Isa. lvii. 10. To feed them is but to enlarge their appetite, for they cry, Give, give, like the grave and the barren womb, Eccl. i. 8. Surfeited they may be, satisfied they can never be. They have a heavy task of it, that have them to provide for; no wonder they can get no other thing minded, as a poor woman that has a company of hungry babes ever hanging about her hand, and crying out of hunger.

Lastly, They are former lusts, 1 Pet. i. 14. Their reign is in the black state of nature. And indeed in all they are foremost on the throne, they have the start of grace always, being born with us, in the virtue of their cause, the corruption of nature. And the power of them must be broken by grace coming in on them, or we perish. Vol. II.


A view of these lusts in the glass of this holy law must needs be very humbling, and stain the pride of all glory. Though the outside be never so clean, they make a foul in. side. For consider,

1. They are the members of the old man, Col. iii. 5. The corruption of nature is the old man, they are his members, which together make up the body of sin. Now, this old man being entire in all the unregenerate, these lusts are all in them; nay, even in the regeneraté, so far as the corruption of nature still dwells in them, though the power of them be broken, yet they still remain, and afford work to them for daily mortification. So that there is none who may not proportionally take that character to themselves, Being filled with all unrighteousness', Rom. i. 29. that is to say, all manner of lusts whatsoever are in the heart of every man, though they do not all break forth in their lives. Consider,

(i.) The same corruption of nature is in all men whatsoever; all are originally and universally corrupt, John iii. 6. There must then be a disposition in all to every evil thing habitually, though not actually. Dost thou see the most abo minable lusts breaking forth in the lives of the worst; smite on thy breast, and say, 'God be merciful to me a sinner, and read thy own heart in their profligate lives, Prov. xxvi. 19. As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man. When thou readest the law of God against these abominations which are not so much as to be named, conclude that these lusts are in thy heart, for God gives no laws in vain.

(2.) What is it man will not do when grace restrains not, and temptation draws forward? Who would have thought the lust of adultery had been in David's heart, of idolatry in Solomon's after the Lord had appeared to him twice, blasphemy in the saints mentioned by Paul, Acts xxvi. 11 ; of incest in Lot's daughters ? But in such a case they broke forth, which they had not done if they had not been within before.

(3.) They are the tinder answering the sparks of Satan's temptationsin the world. It was the peculiar privilege of the man Christ since Adam fell, that the prince of this world had nothing in him, John xiv. 30. There is never a temptation goes abroad in the world, but there is a lust in the heart a kin to it, so that no wonder they embrace one another as friends when they meet. Satan by this means, be his temp tation what it will, has always something to work upon, a fire to blow up. So that in every case whatsoever, that holds true, 'He that trusteth in his own heart, is a fool,' Prov, xxviii. 26.

(4.) They are the filthy matter ready to gather together in a boil in the heart, which being ripened, may break forth in the life, Jam. i. 14. They make way for gross sins, as the seed grows up into a tree that brings forth its natural fruit at length.

(5.) They are the fit opposers of every good motion, Gal. v. 17. So that there is never a good impression made upon, nor motion in the heart, but among these lusts it finds a pe culiar opposite to it, one fit to engage against it, by a pecu. liar malignity in it. And so it is found in the godly, that as they have grace for grace in Christ, so they have corruption for grace in the unrenewed part; still some one lineament of Satan's image to set against another of God's image.

And now these lusts have their lustings and stirrings, a view of which must be very humbling. For consider,

1st, The innumerable occasions of them; at every blink of the eye, opening of the ear, or imagination of the heart, we are in hazard of them. The sparks of temptation are continually flying about us ; how can we be safe, while we have these as gunpowder about us?

2dly, How suddenly they will flee through the heart like a stitch in the side, or an arrow out of a bow? A thought, a wish, is soon brought forth,

3dly, How frequent are they? when are we free of them? when is it that the crooked leg can move, and not halt ?

Lastly, How little are these things noticed? That hellish steam arising from a corrupt nature, being so much within doors, is little regarded, but extremely blackens the soul.

Thus much of the bitter streams; we come now to the fountain and spring-head, from whence they have their rise ; and that is, the corruption of nature. For as there is a poi. sonous nature in the serpent, besides its throwing out of its venom; so, besides the sinful lustings of the heart, there is an habitual corruption of the nature, which is the root of these lustings, loathings, and inordinate motions. The reason why the clock or dial points the hour wrong is, because

unapt for

it is wrong set; and till that set be altered, it will never point right. So man's nature has a wrong set, which we call the corruption of nature, whereby it comes to pass that he can never act right till that set be cured by regeneration. It is a corrupt disposition of the soul, whereby it is

any thing truly good, and prone to evil.

The understanding is deprived of its primitive light and ability, unable to think a good thought, 2 Cor. iii. 5; yea, darkness is over all that region, Eph. v. 8. As for the will, it is free to evil, but not to good, utterly unable so much as rightly to will any thing truly good, Phil

. ii. 13. Nay, it is averse to it as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke. It is prone and bent to evil, Hos. xi. 7; but lies cross and contrary to God and goodness, Rom. viii. 7. The affections are quite disordered, misplaced as to their objects, loving what they should hate, and hating what they should love; or if right as to the objects, they can keep no bounds. But of this I have spoke largely elsewhere *. . . This corruption of nature is here forbidden, for it is truly and properly sin, Rom. vi. 12. and vii. 17. It is the flesh that lusteth against the Spirit, Gal. v. 18; and if sin, it must be contrary to and forbidden by the law. And as sinful anger is forbidden in the sixth commandment, as the immediate fountain of murder, Matth. v. 21, 22; so, by a parity of reason, the corruption of nature is forbidden here, as the immediate fountain of that coveting or lusting, expressed therein.

And though it is impossible for us to prevent this sin, being born with it, it would be considered, that this law was originally given to Adam in innocency, requiring him to keep his nature pure and uncorrupted, and so discharging all cor. ruption of it; which law, after his sin, remains in as full force as ever. And that the second Adam might answer the demands of the law in this point, he was born without this corruption and continued ever free from it. And those that are his, being regenerated are freed from the reigning power of it, and partake of a new nature.

If we look to this sin, we havea humbling view of ourselves, and must cry, Unclean, unclean.

1. It is the fountain of all actual transgressions, Mark vü.

* See Fourfold State.

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