Page images

the wise.

with the tongue.

V.31. The ear that beareth the reproof of life, abideih

among Prov.17.10. i reproof entreth more into a wife

man, than an hundred stripes into a fool. Prov.28.23. He that rebuketh a man, afterwards

shall find more favour ehan be that flattereth Eph.5.11. And have no fellowship with the 14

fruirful works of darkneß, but rather reprove

them, Mat.18.15. Moreover if thy brother shall treffus

against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone, if he shall hear thee, thos hast gained thy brother. V.16. But if he shall not bear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every

may be está blished. V.17. And if he shall neglect to hear them, telit


unto the Church, but if he neglect to hear the Church, let him be unto thee, as an Heatbes man and a Publican.


[blocks in formation]


directs Timothy co give co rich nien, in 1 Tim 6. · 17, 18, 19. Charge them that are rich in this world (He saies not intreat or perswade them, but charge thein, charge it upon their consciences) that they be not high minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth nes richly all things to enjoy. 1.18. That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate. V. 19. Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

From this and other Scriptures, we may gaa tber, that the duties that concern thc rich, are these following

1. They ought to look to it, and be especially careful chat they be really religious and truly Godly. They have many great engagements to it: God hath dealt bountifully with them : The

things of this world serve them, and flow inunto them. When poor people must take pains and work hard to earn their bread, before cheyear ic: They have their Tables spread to their hands. God hath raised them above many of their Bre. thren, and therefore they ought to honour, love, and obey him from whose bounty alone chey receive all their plenty. And as they have greater engagements, so they have greater opportuni. ties and advantages to be religious chan others have. They may spend more time opon cheit fonks than poor people can. They have more lei. fure ( if they have hearts so co employ it) attend che means of Grace, and to work out their faluation. They should consider, chough they are rich in this world, yet there is another world ebat is to be look'd after. Though they enjoy che good things of this life, yet there is a life * come which must be car'd for. Though they are encreafd with worldly goods, yet if they have all their portion here, they are most miserable. Seeing 'cis well wich them here on earth, their main design should be co secure their state in Grace, and their title to Heaven. They should above all things be careful to lay hold on eternal life. This life chey cannot bold, nor their riches, eftates, and poselfions here: They should chere fore lay bold on that which chey may hold, and which will never fail them. They should be lo wife as to eakc che righe course to be beirs of ik


[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Kingdom of Heaven; that when they must bid farewell to this life, and their estates here, they may enter opon that glorious inheritance. And yet strange it is to see how this one thing absolutely neceffary is neglected by far the greater part of chem that are rich in this world. In those places where Silver and Gold are found ( they Tay ) there growech neither grasse nor plant, nor ocher thing that is any thing worth. Many rich mens hearts are as barren of true Piety, as those countries are of grasse : fob (peaking of such, saies, Chap.21.13. They spend their daies in wealth, and in a moment go down to the gravea 7.14. Therefore they say unto God depart from us, for we desire not the knowledge of thy waies. v.15. What is the Almighty that we should serve him? ind what profit should we have, if we pray unto, rim? 'Tis grown almost into a Proverb, a Fittle Religion goes far in a rich man or Gentleman. How do such persons usually bleß themselvesin

few formal ontward performances of religious lucies? And if they live not in the grosse defilenents and pollutions of the world, bucare ofa air and civil conversacion 46 to men, how easily rap they dispense with themselves from engaging n the stricter and more serious parts of Religion ? Nay, those things wherein the life and nower of Godlineffe consists, are (coo often) matter of their fcorn; and sighted and neglected py them as more ado chan needs. And thus it often happens that they that have fulnese o estate, have leannese of soul, as 'cis, Pfal.106.15 And they that are well provided for in this life


, take no due care to provide for eternity, nor to lay up for themselves a good foundation against th: rime to come, 1 Tim.6.19. They chat 'hould be examples of Piety and goodnesse co chose among whom they live, and by their power, wealth and greatnesse should countenance and promote the power of Godlineffe , prove many cimes che greacest discouragers of it. Solomon observed this as a fore evil under the Sun, Eccles.5.13. Riches kept for the owners thereof 10 their bati. And not only for their hurt, but the hurt o: many others round about them. Many could never have been such great finners, and dishonom ers of God, if chey had not had so great ! states.

II. They ought to be exceeding thankful ore God. The more God hath bestowed upon them. the greater is cheir debt of thinkfulnefle, and the greater is cheir duty of obedience. If the Lor: hach lifted them up, if he hath shined upon th: Tabernacle, and given them power to get weak as 'cis, Deut.8.28. Let them not facrifice torbe own net , to their own wit or wisdom, the own labour or industry, but thankfully ackook. ledge his favour, whose blessing makesh rie: Prov. 10. 23: Let chem consider, Promosi cometh neither from the East, nor from the 17:

« PreviousContinue »