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violence or armies, without resistance and selfpreservation, without strength or human eloquence, without challenging of privileges or fighting against tyranny, without alteration of government and scandal of princes, with its humility and meekness, with toleration and patience, with obedience and charity, with praying and dying, did insensibly turn the world into christian, and persecution into victory. I

I have often seen young and unskilful persons

courses.

# The following Extract is from the 9th of Sherlock's Dis

Go to your Natural Religion : lay before her Mahomet and his disciples arrayed in armour and in blood, riding in triumph over the spoils of thousands and tens of thousands who fell by his victorious sword : shew her the cities which he set in flames, the countries which he ravaged and destroyed, and the miserable distress of all the inhabitants of the earth. When she has viewed him in this scene, carry her into his retirements : shew her the prophet's chamber, his concubines and wives ; let her see his adultery, and hear him allege revelation and his divine commission to justify his lust and his oppression. When she is tired with this prospect, then shew her the blessed Jesus, humble and meek, doing good to all the sons of men, patiently instructing both the ignorant and the perverse : let her see him in his most retired privacies : let her follow him to the mount, and hear his devotions and supplications to God : carry her to his table to view his poor fare, and hear his heavenly discourse : let her see him injured, but not provoked : let her attend him to the tribunal, and consider the patience with which he endured the scoffs and reproaches of his enemies : lead her to the cross, and let her view him in the agony of death, and hear his last prayer for his persecutors:

Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!”

When Natural Religion has viewed both, ask, Which is the prophet of God ?

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sitting in a little boat, when every little wave sporting about the sides of the vessel, and every motion and dancing of the barge seemed a danger, and made them cling fast upon their fellows; and yet all the while they were as safe as if they sate under a tree, while a gentle wind shaked the leaves into a refreshment and a cooling shade. And the unskilful, unexperienced christian shrieks out when ever his vessel shakes, thinking it always a danger, that the watery pavement is not stable and resident like a rock; and yet all his danger is in himself, none at all from without; for he is indeed moving upon the waters, but fastened to a rock; faith is his foundation, and hope is his anchor, and death is his arbour, and Christ is his pilot, and heaven is his country; and all the evils of poverty, or affronts of tribunals and evil judges, of fears and sadder apprehensions, are but like the loud wind blowing from the right point, they make a noise and drive faster to the harbour : and if we do not leave the ship, and leap into the sea; quit the interest of religion, and run to the securities of the world; cut our cables, and dissolve our hopes; grow impatient, and hug a wave, and die in its embraces; we are as safe at sea, safer in the storm which God sends us, than in a calm when we are befriended with the world.t

PRESENTLY it came to pass that men were no longer ashamed of the cross, but it was worn upon

+ The Faith and Patience of the Saints; Serm. ix. and xi.

breasts, printed in the air, drawn upon foreheads, carried upon banners, put upon crowns

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Bacon, in his New Atlantis, says :About twenty years after the ascension of our Saviour it “ came to pass, that there was seen by the people of Ren

fusa, a city upon the eastern coast of our island, within

night, the night was cloudy and calm, as it might be some “mile into the sea, a great pillar of light; not sharp, but in “ form of a column or cylinder rising from the sea, a great

way up towards heaven: and on the top of it was seen a “large cross of light, more bright and resplendent than the

body of the pillar. Upon which so strange a spectacle, the people of the city gathered apace together upon the

sands to wonder; and so after put themselves into a num“ber of small boats, to go nearer to this marvellous sight. “ But when the boats were come within about sixty yards of

the pillar, they found themselves all bound, and could go no further, yet so as they might move to go about, but might not approach nearer : so as the boats stood all as in “ a theatre, beholding this light as a heavenly sign. It so “ fell out, that there was in one of the boats one of the wise “men of the society of Solomon's house, which house or

college, my good brethren, is the very eye of this kingdom : “who having awhile attentively and devoutly viewed and "contemplated this pillar and cross, fell down upon his face ; " and then raised himself upon his knees, and listing up his " hands to heaven, made his prayers.

“When he had made his prayer," he presently found the “boat he was in moveable and unbound; whereas all the “ rest remained still fast; and taking that for an assurance

of leave to approach, he caused the boat to be softly and " with silence rowed towards the pillar. But ere he came “Dear it, the pillar and cross of light brake up, and cast itself “abroad, as it were into a firmament of many stars; which “also vanished soon after ; and there was nothing left to be

seen but a small ark or chest of cedar, dry, and not wet at “all with water, though it swam.

And in the fore-end of it, “which was towards him, grew a small green branch of

46

" palm.”

imperial presently it came to pass that the religion of the despised Jesus did infinitely prevail: a religion that taught men to be meek and humble, apt to receive injuries, but unapt to do any; a religion that gave countenance to the poor

and pitiful, in a time when riches were adored, and ambition and pleasure had possessed the heart of all mankind : a religion that would change the face of things, and the hearts of men, and break vile habits into gentleness and counsel. That such a religion, in such a time, by the sermons and conduct of fishermen, men of mean breeding and illiberal arts, should so speedily triumph over the philosophy of the world, and the arguments of the subtle, and the sermons of the eloquent; the power of princes and the interests of states, the inclinations of nature and the blindness of zeal, the force of custom and the solicitation of passions, the pleasures of sin and the busy arts of the devil; that is against wit and power, superstition and wilfulness, fame and money, nature and empire, which are all the causes in this world that can make a thing impossible; this, this is to be ascribed to the power of God, and is the great demonstration of the resurrection of Jesus. Every thing was an argument for it, and improved it: no objection could hinder it, no enemies destroy it, whatsoever was for them, it made the religion to increase; whatsoever was against them, made it to increase ; sun-shine and storms, fair weather or foul, it was all one as to the event of things : for they were instruments in

the hands of God, who could make what himself should choose to be the product of any cause; so 'that if the christians had peace, they went abroad and brought in converts; if they had no peace, but persecution, the converts came in to them. In prosperity they allured and enticed the world by the beauty of holiness ; in affliction and trouble they amazed all men with the splendour of their innocence and the glories of their patience; and quickly it was that the world became disciple to the glorious Nazarene, and men could no longer doubt of the resurrection of Jesus, when it became so demonstrated by the certainty of them that saw it, and the courage of them that died for it, and the multitude of them that believed it; who by their sermons and their actions, by their public offices and discourses, by festivals and eucharists, by arguments of experience and sense, by reason and religion, by persuading rational men, and establishing believing christians, by their living in the obedience of Jesus, and dying for the testimony of Jesus, have greatly advanced his kingdom, and his power, and his glory, into which he entered after his resurrection from the dead.t

OF TRUE AND OF MOCK RELIGION.

I have seen a female religion that wholly dwelt upon the face and tongue; that like a wanton and

+ Sermon preached at the Funeral of the Lord Primate.

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