HOMILY ON THE DECLINING FROM GOD

from Short-Title Catalogue 13675.
Renaissance Electronic Texts 1.2.
© 1994, 1997 Ian Lancashire
University of Toronto

UTEL Home Page.



A SERMON HO{VV}
dangerous a thing it is to fall from God.

[margin]
Eccl. 10.
[margin]


[I.8.1-1]  OF our going from GOD, the wise man
[I.8.1-2]  saith, that pride was the first beginning:
[I.8.1-3]  for by it mans heart was turned from
[I.8.1-4]  GOD his maker. For pride (saith hee)
[I.8.1-5]  is the fountaine of all sinne: he that hath
[I.8.1-6]  it, shall be full of cursings, and at the end
[I.8.1-7]  it shall ouerthrow him. And as by pride
[I.8.1-8]  and sinne wee goe from GOD, so shall

[margin]
Ozee.5.
[margin]


[I.8.1-9]  GOD and all goodnesse with him goe
[I.8.1-10]  from vs. And the Prophet Osee doth
[I.8.1-11]  plainely affirme, that they which goe a­
[I.8.1-12]  way still from GOD by vicious liuing,
[I.8.1-13]  and yet would goe about to pacifie him
[I.8.1-14]  otherwise by sacrifice, and entertaine him thereby, they labour in vaine.
[I.8.1-15]  For, notwithstanding all their sacrifice, yet hee goeth still away from
[I.8.1-16]  them. For so much (saith the Prophet) as they doe not apply their minds
[I.8.1-17]  to returne to GOD, although they goe about with whole flockes and
[I.8.1-18]  heards to seeke the Lord, yet they shall not find him: for he is gone away
[I.8.1-19]  from them. But as touching our turning to GOD, or from GOD,
[I.8.1-20]  you shall vnderstand, that it may bee done diuers wayes. Sometimes
[I.8.1-21]  directly by Idolatry, as Israel and Iuda then did: sometimes men goe

[margin]
Esai.31.
[margin]


[I.8.1-22]  from GOD by lacke of Fayth, and mistrusting of GOD, whereof Esay
[I.8.1-23]  speaketh in this wise, Woe to them that goe downe into Egypt to seeke
[I.8.1-24]  for helpe, trusting in horses, |&| hauing confidence in the number of chari­
[I.8.1-25]  ots, and puisance or power of horsemen. They haue no confidence in the
[I.8.1-26]  holy GOD of Israel, nor seeke for the Lord. But what followeth?
[I.8.1-27]  The Lord shall let his hand fall vpon them, and downe shall come both
[I.8.1-28]  the helper, and hee that is holpen: they shall bee destroyed altogether.
[I.8.1-29]  Sometime men goe from GOD by the neglecting of his Commande­
[I.8.1-30]  ments concerning their neighbours, which commandeth them to ex­

[margin]
Zach.7.
[margin]


[I.8.1-31]  presse hearty loue towards euery man, as Zacharie said vnto the people
[I.8.1-32]  in GODS behalfe. Giue true iudgement, shew mercy and compassi­
[I.8.1-33]  on euery one to his brother, imagine no deceit towards widowes, or chil­
[I.8.1-34]  dren fatherlesse and motherlesse, toward strangers, or the poore, let no
[I.8.1-35]  man forge euill in his heart against his brother. But these things they
[I.8.1-36]  passed not off, they turned their backes, and went their way, they stop­
[I.8.1-37]  ped their eares that they might not heare, they hardened their hearts as
[I.8.1-38]  an Adamant stone, that they might not listen to the Law, and the wordes
[I.8.1-39]  that the Lord had sent through his holy Spirit, by his ancient Pro­
[I.8.1-40]  phets. Wherefore the Lord shewed his great indignation vpon them.
[I.8.1-41]  It came to passe (saith the Prophet) euen as I told them: as they would

[margin]
Iere. 7.
[margin]


[I.8.1-42]  not heare, so when they cryed, they were not heard, but were scattered
[I.8.1-43]  into all kingdomes which they neuer knew, and their land was made de­
[I.8.1-44]  solate. And to be short, all they that may not abide the word of GOD,
[I.8.1-45]  but following the perswasions and stubbornnesse of their owne hearts,
[I.8.1-46]  goe backeward and not forward (as it is said in Ieremie) They goe and

[margin]
Iere.7.
[margin]


[I.8.1-47]  turne a way from GOD. Insomuch that Origen saith, Hee that with
[I.8.1-48]  mind, with study, with deedes, with thought, and care applyeth and gi­
[I.8.1-49]  ueth himselfe to GODS word, and thinketh vpon his Lawes day and
[I.8.1-50]  night, giueth himselfe wholly to GOD, and in his precepts and Com­
[I.8.1-51]  mandements is exercised: this is hee that is turned to GOD. And on
[I.8.1-52]  the other part hee sayth, Whosoeuer is occupied with Fables and
[I.8.1-53]  Tales, when the worde of GOD is rehearsed, hee is turned from
[I.8.1-54]  GOD. Whosoeuer in time of reading GODS word, is carefull
[I.8.1-55]  in his minde of worldly businesse, of money, or of lucre, hee is tur­
[I.8.1-56]  ned from GOD: whosoeuer is intangled with the cares of posses­
[I.8.1-57]  sions, filled with couetousnesse of riches, whosoeuer studieth for the
[I.8.1-58]  glory and honour of this world, hee is turned from GOD. So that af­
[I.8.1-59]  ter his minde, whosoeuer hath not a speciall minde to that thing that is
[I.8.1-60]  commanded or taught of GOD, hee that doeth not listen vnto it, em­
[I.8.1-61]  brace, and print it in his heart, to the intent that hee may duely fashi­
[I.8.1-62]  on his life thereafter, hee is plainely turned from GOD, although
[I.8.1-63]  hee doe other things of his owne deuotion and mind, which to him seeme
[I.8.1-64]  better, and more to GODS honour. Which thing to be true, wee bee
[I.8.1-65]  taught and admonished in the holy Scripture by the example of king
[I.8.1-66]  Saul, who being commanded of GOD by Samuel, that he should kill
[I.8.1-67]  all the Amalekites, and destroy them clearely with their goods and cattel:

[margin]
1.King.15.
[margin]


[I.8.1-68]  yet hee, being mooued partly with pitie, and partly (as he thought) with
[I.8.1-69]  deuotion vnto GOD, saued Agag the King, and all the chiefe of their cat­
[I.8.1-70]  tell, therewith to make sacrifice vnto GOD. Wherewithall GOD be­
[I.8.1-71]  ing displeased highly, sayd vnto the Prophet Samuel, I repent that e­
[I.8.1-72]  uer I made Saul King, for hee hath forsaken me, and not followed my
[I.8.1-73]  words, and so he commanded Samuel to shew him, and when Samu­
[I.8.1-74]  el asked wherefore (contrary to GODS word) he had saued the cattel,
[I.8.1-75]  he excused the matter, partly, by feare, saying, hee durst doe none other,
[I.8.1-76]  for that the people would haue it so, partly, for that they were goodly
[I.8.1-77]  beastes, hee thought GOD would bee content, seeing it was done of a
[I.8.1-78]  good intent and deuotion, to honour GOD with the sacrifice of them.

[I.8.1-79]  But Samuel reproouing all such intents and deuotions (seeme they
[I.8.1-80]  neuer so much to GODS honour, if they stand not with his word,
[I.8.1-81]  whereby wee may be assured of his pleasure) said in this wise, Would
[I.8.1-82]  GOD haue sacrifices and offerings? Or rather that his word should
[I.8.1-83]  be obeyed? To obey him, is better then offerings, and to listen to him is
[I.8.1-84]  better then to offer the fat of Rammes: yea, to repugne against his voyce
[I.8.1-85]  is as euill as the sinne of soothsaying: and not to agree to it is like abo­
[I.8.1-86]  minable Idolatrie. And now forasmuch as thou hast cast away the word
[I.8.1-87]  of the Lord, he hath cast away thee, that thou shouldest not be king.

[margin]
The turning
of God from
man.
[margin]


[I.8.1-88]  By all these examples of holy Scripture, we may know, that as wee
[I.8.1-89]  forsake GOD, so shall hee euer forsake vs. And what miserable state
[I.8.1-90]  doeth consequently and necessarily follow thereupon, a man may easily
[I.8.1-91]  consider by the terrible threatnings of GOD. And although hee consi­
[I.8.1-92]  der not all the sayd miserie to the vttermost, being so great that it passeth
[I.8.1-93]  any mans capacitie in this life sufficiently to consider the same: yet hee
[I.8.1-94]  shall soone perceiue so much thereof, that if his heart bee not more then
[I.8.1-95]  stonie, or harder then the Adamant, he shall feare, tremble, and quake, to
[I.8.1-96]  call the same to his remembrance. First the displeasure of GOD to­
[I.8.1-97]  wards vs is commonly expressed in the Scripture by these two things:
[I.8.1-98]  by shewing his fearefull countenance vpon vs, and by turning his face,
[I.8.1-99]  or hiding it from vs. By shewing his dreadfull countenance, is signifi­
[I.8.1-100]  ed his great wrath: but by turning his face or hiding thereof is many
[I.8.1-101]  times more signified, that is to say, that he clearely forsaketh vs, and gi­
[I.8.1-102]  ueth vs ouer. The which significations bee taken of the properties of
[I.8.1-103]  mens manners. For men towards them whom they fauour, commonly
[I.8.1-104]  beare a good, a chearefull, and a louing countenance: so that by the face
[I.8.1-105]  or countenance of a man, it doeth commonly appeare what will or minde
[I.8.1-106]  hee beareth towards other. So when GOD doeth shew his dreadfull
[I.8.1-107]  countenance towards vs, that is to say, doeth send dreadfull plagues
[I.8.1-108]  of Sword, famine, or pestilence vpon vs, it appeareth that hee is greatly
[I.8.1-109]  wroth with vs. But when he withdraweth from vs his Word, the right
[I.8.1-110]  doctrine of Christ, his gracious assistance and ayde (which is euer ioyned
[I.8.1-111]  to his word) and leaueth vs to our own wit, our owne will and strength:
[I.8.1-112]  he declareth then, that he beginneth to forsake vs. For whereas GOD
[I.8.1-113]  hath shewed to all them that truely beleeue his Gospel, his face of mercie
[I.8.1-114]  in Iesus Christ, which doeth so lighten their hearts, that they (if they
[I.8.1-115]  behold it as they ought to doe) be transformed to his Image, be made par­
[I.8.1-116]  takers of the heauenly light, and of his holy Spirit, and bee fashioned to
[I.8.1-117]  him in all goodnesse requisite to the children of GOD: so, if they after
[I.8.1-118]  doe neglect the same, if they bee vnthankefull vnto him, if they order not
[I.8.1-119]  their liues according to his example and doctrine, and to the setting forth
[I.8.1-120]  of his glory, he will take away from them his Kingdome, his holy word,
[I.8.1-121]  whereby hee should reigne in them, because they bring not foorth the
[I.8.1-122]  fruit thereof that he looketh for. Neuerthelesse, his is so mercifull, and of so
[I.8.1-123]  long sufferance, that he doeth not shew vpon vs that great wrath sudden­
[I.8.1-124]  ly. But when we begin to shrinke from his word, not beleeuing it, or not
[I.8.1-125]  expressing it in our liuings: first hee doeth send his messengers, the true
[I.8.1-126]  preachers of his word, to admonish and warne vs of our duetie: that as
[I.8.1-127]  hee for his part, for the great loue hee bare vnto vs, deliuered his owne
[I.8.1-128]  Sonne to suffer death, that wee by his death might be deliuered from
[I.8.1-129]  death, and be restored to the life euerlasting, euermore to dwell with him,
[I.8.1-130]  and to bee partakers and inheritours with him, of his euerlasting glory
[I.8.1-131]  and kingdome of heauen: so againe, that we for our parts should walke
[I.8.1-132]  in a godly life, as becommeth his children to doe. And if this will not
[I.8.1-133]  serue, but still we remaine disobedient to his word and wil, not knowing
[I.8.1-134]  him, nor louing him, not fearing him, not putting our whole trust and
[I.8.1-135]  confidence in him: and on the other side, to our neighbours behauing
[I.8.1-136]  our selues vncharitably, by disdaine, enuie, malice, or by committing
[I.8.1-137]  murder, robbery, adultery, gluttony, deceit, lying, swearing, or other like
[I.8.1-138]  detestable workes, and vngodly behauiour, then he threatneth vs by ter­

[margin]
Hebr.3.
Psal.15.
1.Cor.6.
[margin]


[I.8.1-139]  rible comminations, swearing in great anger, that whosoeuer doth these
[I.8.1-140]  workes, shall neuer enter into his rest, which is the kingdome of heauen.




The second part of the Sermon
of falling from God.

[I.8.2-141]  IN the former part of this sermon, yee haue learned how
[I.8.2-142]  many manner of wayes men fall from GOD: some by
[I.8.2-143]  idolatrie, some for lacke of faith, some by neglecting of
[I.8.2-144]  their neighbors, some by not hearing of GODS word,
[I.8.2-145]  some by the pleasure they take in the vanities of worldly
[I.8.2-146]  things. Yee haue also learned in what misery that man
[I.8.2-147]  is, which is gone from GOD: and how that GOD yet of
[I.8.2-148]  his infinite goodnesse to call againe man from that his miserie vseth first
[I.8.2-149]  gentle admonitions by his Preachers, after he layeth on terrible threat­
[I.8.2-150]  nings. Now if this gentle monition and threatning together doe not
[I.8.2-151]  serue, then GOD will shew his terrible countenance vpon vs, hee will
[I.8.2-152]  powre intolerable plagues vpon our heads, and after he will take away
[I.8.2-153]  from vs all his ayde and assistance, wherewith before hee did defend vs
[I.8.2-154]  from all such manner of calamitie. As the Euangelicall prophet Esay

[margin]
Esay 5.
[margin]


[I.8.2-155]  greeing with Christs parable doeth teach vs, saying, That GOD had
[I.8.2-156]  made a goodly vineyard for his beloued children, hee hedged it, he walled
[I.8.2-157]  it round about, he planted it with chosen vines, and made a Turret in

[margin]
Mat.21.
[margin]


[I.8.2-158]  the middest thereof, and therein also a vine-presse. And when he looked
[I.8.2-159]  that it should bring him foorth good grapes, it brought forth wild graps:
[I.8.2-160]  and after it followeth, Now shall I shew you (saith GOD) what I wil
[I.8.2-161]  doe with my vineyard: I will plucke downe the hedges, that it may
[I.8.2-162]  perish: I will breake downe the walles that it may bee troden vnder
[I.8.2-163]  foot: I will let it lie wast, it shall not be cut, it shall not bee digged, but
[I.8.2-164]  briers and thornes shall ouergrowe it, and I shall command the cloudes
[I.8.2-165]  that they shall no more raine vpon it.

[I.8.2-166]  By these threatnings we are monished and warned, that if we which
[I.8.2-167]  are the chosen vineyard of GOD, bring not foorth good grapes, that is
[I.8.2-168]  to say, good workes that may bee delectable and pleasant in his sight,
[I.8.2-169]  when hee looketh for them, when he sendeth his messengers to call vpon
[I.8.2-170]  vs for them, but rather bring foorth wild grapes, that is to say, sowre
[I.8.2-171]  workes, vnsauery, and vnfruitfull: then will hee plucke away all de­
[I.8.2-172]  sence, and suffer grieuous plagues of famine, battell, dearth, and death,
[I.8.2-173]  to light vpon vs. Finally, if these serue not, he will let vs lie waste, he

[I.8.2-174]  will giue vs ouer, he will turne away from vs, he will dig and delue no
[I.8.2-175]  more about vs, hee will let vs alone, and suffer vs to bring foorth euen
[I.8.2-176]  such fruite as wee will, to bring foorth brambles, bryers, and thornes,
[I.8.2-177]  all naughtinesse, all vice, and that so abundantly, that they shall cleane
[I.8.2-178]  ouergrow vs, choke, strangle, and vtterly destroy vs. But they that in
[I.8.2-179]  this world liue not after GOD, but after their owne carnall libertie,
[I.8.2-180]  perceiue not this great wrath of GOD towards them, that he will not
[I.8.2-181]  digge, nor delue any more about them, that hee doeth let them alone e­
[I.8.2-182]  uen to themselues. But they take this for a great benefit of GOD, to
[I.8.2-183]  haue all their owne libertie: and so they liue, as if carnall libertie were
[I.8.2-184]  the true libertie of the Gospel. But GOD forbid (good people) that e­
[I.8.2-185]  uer we should desire such libertie. For although GOD suffer sometimes
[I.8.2-186]  the wicked to haue their pleasure in this world, yet the ende of vngodly
[I.8.2-187]  liuing is at length endlesse destruction. The murmuring Israelites had

[margin]
Numb.11.
[margin]


[I.8.2-188]  that they longed for, they had Quailes ynough, yea, till they were wea­
[I.8.2-189]  ry of them. But what was the end thereof? Their sweete meate had
[I.8.2-190]  sowre sauce: euen whiles the meate was in their mouthes, the plague
[I.8.2-191]  of GOD lighted vpon them, and suddenly they died. So, if wee liue
[I.8.2-192]  vngodly, and GOD suffereth vs to follow our owne willes, to haue
[I.8.2-193]  our owne delightes and pleasures, and correcteth vs not with some
[I.8.2-194]  plague: it is no doubt but hee is almost vtterly displeased with vs. And
[I.8.2-195]  although hee be long ere he strike, yet many times when he striketh such
[I.8.2-196]  persons, hee striketh them at once for euer. So that when he doeth not
[I.8.2-197]  strike vs, when he ceaseth to afflict vs, to punish or beat vs, and suffereth
[I.8.2-198]  vs to runne headlong into all vngodlinesse, and pleasures of this world
[I.8.2-199]  that wee delight in, without punishment and aduersity, it is a dreadfull
[I.8.2-200]  token that hee loueth vs no longer, that he careth no longer for vs, but
[I.8.2-201]  hath giuen vs ouer to our owne selues. As long as a man doeth prune
[I.8.2-202]  his vines, doeth dig at the rootes, and doeth lay fresh earth to them, hee
[I.8.2-203]  hath a mind to them, he perceiueth some token of fruitfulnes that may
[I.8.2-204]  be recouered in them, but when hee will bestow no more such cost and la­
[I.8.2-205]  bour about them, then it is a signe that hee thinketh they will neuer bee
[I.8.2-206]  good. And the father, as long as he loueth his childe, he loketh angerly, he
[I.8.2-207]  correcteth him when hee doeth amisse: but when that serueth not, and
[I.8.2-208]  vpon that he ceaseth from correction of him, and suffereth him to do what
[I.8.2-209]  he list himselfe, it is a signe that he intendeth to disinherit him and to cast
[I.8.2-210]  him away for euer. So surely nothing should pearce our heart so sore,
[I.8.2-211]  and put vs in such horrible feare, as when wee know in our conscience,
[I.8.2-212]  that we haue greeuously offended GOD, and doe so continue, and that yet
[I.8.2-213]  he striketh not, but quietly suffereth vs in the naughtines that wee haue

[margin]
Psal.51.
[margin]


[I.8.2-214]  delight in. Then specially it is time to cry, and to cry againe, as Dauid
[I.8.2-215]  did: Cast mee not away from thy face, and take not away thy holy spi­
[I.8.2-216]  rit from mee. Lord turne not away thy face from mee, cast not thy ser­
[I.8.2-217]  uant away in displeasure. Hide not thy face from mee, least I bee like
[I.8.2-218]  vnto them that goe downe to hell. The which lamentable prayers of
[I.8.2-219]  him, as they doe certifie vs what horrible danger they be in, from whom
[I.8.2-220]  GOD turneth his face (for the time, and as long as he so doth:) so should

[I.8.2-221]  they mooue and stirre vs to cry vpon GOD with all our heart, that wee
[I.8.2-222]  may not bee brought into that state, which doubtlesse is so sorrowfull,
[I.8.2-223]  so miserable, and so dreadfull, as no tongue canne sufficiently expresse,
[I.8.2-224]  nor any heart canne thinke. For what deadly greefe may a man suppose
[I.8.2-225]  it is to bee vnder the wrath of GOD, to bee forsaken of him, to haue
[I.8.2-226]  his holy spirit the authour of all goodnesse to bee taken from him, to bee
[I.8.2-227]  brought to so vile a condition, that hee shall bee left meete for no better
[I.8.2-228]  purpose, then to bee for euer condemned in hell? For not onely such pla­
[I.8.2-229]  ces of Dauid doe shew, that vpon the turning of GODS face from
[I.8.2-230]  any persons, they shall bee left bare from all goodnesse, and farre from
[I.8.2-231]  hope of remedie: but also the place rehearsed last before of Esay, doeth
[I.8.2-232]  meane the same, which sheweth, that GOD at length doeth so for­
[I.8.2-233]  sake his vnfruitfull vineyard, that hee will not onely suffer it to bring
[I.8.2-234]  foorth weedes, bryers, and thornes, but also further to punish the
[I.8.2-235]  vnfruitfulnesse of it. Hee saith hee will not cut it, hee will not delue it,
[I.8.2-236]  and hee will commaund the cloudes that they shall not raine vpon it:
[I.8.2-237]  whereby is signified the teaching of his holy word, which Saint Paul,
[I.8.2-238]  after a like manner, expressed by planting and watering, meaning that
[I.8.2-239]  hee will take that away from them, so that they shall bee no longer of
[I.8.2-240]  his kingdome, they shall bee no longer gouerned by his holy Spirit, they
[I.8.2-241]  shall bee put from the grace and benefits that they had, and euer
[I.8.2-242]  might haue enioyed through Christ, they shall bee depriued of the hea­
[I.8.2-243]  uenly light, and life which they had in Christ, whiles they abode in
[I.8.2-244]  him: they shall bee (as they were once) as men without GOD in this
[I.8.2-245]  world, or rather in worse taking. And to be short, they shall bee giuen in­
[I.8.2-246]  to the power of the deuill, which beareth the rule in all them that be cast
[I.8.2-247]  away from GOD, as hee did in Saul and Iudas, and generally in

[margin]
1.Kings.15.
[margin]


[I.8.2-248]  all such, as worke after their owne willes, the children of mistrust and
[I.8.2-249]  vnbeliefe. Let vs beware therefore (good Christian people) least that wee
[I.8.2-250]  reiecting or casting away GODS word (by the which we obtaine and
[I.8.2-251]  retaine true faith in GOD) bee not at length cast of so farre, that wee
[I.8.2-252]  become as the children of vnbeleefe, which bee of two sortes, farre di­
[I.8.2-253]  uerse, yea, almost cleane contrarie, |&| yet both be very farre from retur­
[I.8.2-254]  ning to GOD; the one sort, onely weighing their sinfull and detestable
[I.8.2-255]  liuing, with the right iudgement and straightnesse of GODS righte­
[I.8.2-256]  ousnesse, bee so without counsaile, and bee so comfortlesse (as they all
[I.8.2-257]  must needes bee from whom the spirit of counsell and comfort is gone)
[I.8.2-258]  that they will not bee perswaded in their heartes, but |&|that; either GOD can
[I.8.2-259]  not, or else that hee will not take them againe to his fauour and mercie.
[I.8.2-260]  The other, hearing the louing and large promises of GODS mercie,
[I.8.2-261]  and so not conceiuing a right faith thereof, make those promises larger
[I.8.2-262]  then euer GOD did, trusting, that although they continue in their sin­
[I.8.2-263]  full and detestable lyuing neuer so long, yet that GOD at the end of their
[I.8.2-264]  life, will shew his mercie vpon them, and that then they will re­
[I.8.2-265]  turne. And both these two sortes of men be in a damnable state, and
[I.8.2-266]  yet neuerthelesse, GOD (who willeth not the death of the wicked) hath

[margin]
Ezec.18.
and 33.

[margin]


[I.8.2-267]  shewed meanes, whereby both the same (if they take heede in season)
[I.8.2-268]  may escape. The first, as they doe dread GODS rightfull iustice in punish­

[margin]
Against de­
speration.
[margin]


[I.8.2-269]  ing sinners (whereby they should bee dismayed, and should despaire in
[I.8.2-270]  deede, as touching any hope that may be in themselues) so if thy would
[I.8.2-271]  constantly or stedfastly beleeue, that GODS mercy is the remedy appoin­
[I.8.2-272]  ted against such despaire and distrust, not onely for them, but generally
[I.8.2-273]  for all that bee sorry |&| truely repentant, and will therewithall sticke to
[I.8.2-274]  GODS mercie, they may be sure they shall obtaine mercie, and enter into
[I.8.2-275]  the port or hauen of safegard, into the which whosoeuer doth come, bee
[I.8.2-276]  they before time neuer so wicked, they shall be out of danger of euerlasting

[margin]
Ezec.3.
[margin]


[I.8.2-277]  damnation, as GOD by Ezechiel saith, what time soeuer a sinner doth
[I.8.2-278]  returne, and take earnest and true repentance, I will forget all his wick­

[margin]
Against
presumption.
[margin]


[I.8.2-279]  ednesse. The other, as they be ready to beleeue GODS promises, so they
[I.8.2-280]  should bee as ready to beleeue the threatnings of GOD: as well they
[I.8.2-281]  should beleeue the law, as the Gospel: as well that there is an hell |&| euer­
[I.8.2-282]  lasting fire, as that there is an heauen, and euerlasting ioy: as well they
[I.8.2-283]  should beleeue damnation to be threatned to the wicked and euill doers,
[I.8.2-284]  as saluation to be promised to the faithfull in word and workes, aswell
[I.8.2-285]  they should beleeue GOD to be true in the one, as in the other. And
[I.8.2-286]  the sinners that continue in their wicked liuing, ought to thinke, that
[I.8.2-287]  the promises of GODS mercy, and the Gospell, pertaine not vnto
[I.8.2-288]  them being in that state, but only the law, and those Scriptures which
[I.8.2-289]  contayne the wrath and indignation of GOD, and his threatnings,
[I.8.2-290]  which should certifie them, that as they doe ouer boldly presume of Gods
[I.8.2-291]  mercy, and liue dissolutely: so doth GOD still more and more withdraw
[I.8.2-292]  his mercy from them, and he is so prouoked thereby to wrath at length,
[I.8.2-293]  that he destroyeth such presumers many times suddenly. For of such S.

[margin]
1.Thess.5.
[margin]


[I.8.2-294]  Paul sayd thus, When they shall say it is peace, there is no danger, then
[I.8.2-295]  shall sudden destruction come vpon them. Let vs beware therefore of
[I.8.2-296]  such naughty boldnesse to sinne. For GOD, which hath promised his
[I.8.2-297]  mercie to them that bee truely repentant (although it bee at the latter
[I.8.2-298]  ende) hath not promised to the presumptuous sinner, either that he shall
[I.8.2-299]  haue long life, or that he shall haue true repentance at the last end. But
[I.8.2-300]  for that purpose hath hee made euery mans death vncertaine, that hee
[I.8.2-301]  should not put his hope in the ende, and in the meane season (to GODS
[I.8.2-302]  high displeasure) liue vngodly. Wherefore, let vs follow the counsell of
[I.8.2-303]  the wise man, let vs make no tarrying to turne vnto the Lord: let vs
[I.8.2-304]  not put off from day to day, for suddainly shall his wrath come, and in
[I.8.2-305]  time of vengeance hee will destroy the wicked. Let vs therefore turne
[I.8.2-306]  betimes, and when wee turne let vs pray to GOD, as Ose teacheth,

[margin]
Osee 14.
[margin]


[I.8.2-307]  saying, Forgiue all our sinnes, receiue vs gratiously. And if wee turne
[I.8.2-308]  to him with an humble and a very penitent heart, hee will receiue vs
[I.8.2-309]  to his fauour and grace for his holy Names sake, for his promise sake,
[I.8.2-310]  for his trueth and mercies sake, promised to all faithfull beleeuers in Ie­
[I.8.2-311]  sus Christ his onely naturall Sonne: to whom the onely Sauiour of
[I.8.2-312]  the world with the Father and the holy Ghost, be all honour, glory, and
[I.8.2-313]  power, world without end. Amen.