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II.

The re

love or

1.

SERM. the power of His wrath?” He that doth, will surely regard

this.

In that day, there is not the most careless of us all

but shall cry as they did in the Gospel, Domine, non ad Te Mark 4.38. pertinet, si perimus? “Pertains it not to Thee, carest Thou not

that we perish ?” Then would we be glad to pertain to Him and His Passion. Pertains it to us then, and pertains it not now? Sure now it must, if then it shall.

Then to give end to this complaint, let us grant Him quest, Ilave some His request, and regard His Passion. Let the rareness of regard.

it, the nearness to us, let pity or duty, fear or remorse,
bounty; any of them or all of them; let the justness of His
complaint, let His affectionate manner of complaining of this
and only this, let the shame of the creatures' regard, let our
profit or our peril, let something prevail with us to have it in
some regard.

Some regard ! Verily, as His sufferings, His love, our good by Our best them are, so should our regard be a non sicut too; that is, a

regard of these, and of nothing in comparison of these. It should be so, for with the benefit ever the regard should arise.

But God help us poor sinners, and be merciful unto us! Our regard is a non sicut indeed, but it is backward, and in a contrary sense ; that is, no where so shallow, so short, or so soon done. It should be otherwise, it should have our deepest consideration this, and our highest regard.

But if that cannot be had, our nature is so heavy, and flesh

and blood so dull of apprehension in spiritual things, yet regard.

at leastwise some regard. Some I say; the more the better, but in any wise some, and not as here no regard, none at all. Some ways to shew we make account of it, to withdraw ourselves, to void our minds of other matters, to set this before us, to think upon it, to thank Him for it, to regard Him,

and stay and see whether He will regard us or no. Sure He Acts 2. 37. will, and we shall feel our “hearts pricked" with sorrow, by Lu. 24. 32. consideration of the cause in us—our sin; and again,

within us,” by consideration of the cause in Ilim-Ilis love; till by some motion of grace He answer us, and shew that our

regard is accepted of Him. This day

And this, as at all other times, for no day is amiss but at all specially,

2. At least some

warm

3.

times some time to be taken for this duty, so specially on this day; this day, which we hold holy to the memory of His Passion, this day to do it; to make this day, the day of God's wrath and Christ's suffering, a day to us of serious consideration and regard of them both.

It is kindly to consider opus diei in die suo, “the work of the day in the day it was wrought;' and this day it was wrought. This day therefore, whatsoever business be, to lay them aside a little ; whatsoever our haste, yet to stay a little, and to spend a few thoughts in calling to mind and taking to regard what this day the Son of God did and suffered for us; and all for this end, that what He was then we might not be, and what He is now we might be for ever.

Which Almighty God grant we may do, more or less, even every one of us, according to the several measures of His grace in us!

A SERMON

PREACHED BEFORE THE

KING'S MAJESTY, AT GREENWICH,

ON THE TWENTY-NINTH OF MARCII, A.D. MPCV., BEING GOOR-FRIDAY.

IIEBREWS xii. 2.

Looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith ; Ilho for the joy that was set before Ilim, endured the cross, and despised the shame; and is set at the right-hand of the throne

of God.

Aspicientes in Authorem fidei, et Consummatorem Jesum ; Qui propo

sito Sibi gaudio, sustinuit crucem, confusione contempta; atque in dexterá scdis Dei sedet.

SERM.

III.

[Looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our fai'h ; Who, for

the joy that was set before Ilim, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. Engl. Trans.]

St. Luke, though he recount at large our Saviour Christ's

whole story, yet in plain and express terms he calleth the Lu. 23. 48. Passion dewplav, " a theory or sight,” which sight is it the

Apostle here calleth us to look unto.

Of our blessed Saviour's whole life or death, there is no part but is "a theory” of itself, well worthy our looking on; for from each part thereof there goeth virtue to do us good. From each part ;-but of all, from the last part, or act of His Passion. Therefore hath the Holy Ghost honoured this last part only with this name, and none but this. This is the “theory” ever most commended to our view. To be looked on He is at all times, and in all acts; but then, and in that act, specially, “when for the joy set before Him, He endured the cross, and despised the shame.” Then, saith the Apostle, “look unto Him." St. Paul being elsewhere careful to shew the Corinthians, and with them us, Christ; and as to shew

them Christ, so to shew them in Christ what that is that specially concerneth them to know or look unto, thus he saith: that though he knew many, very many things besides, yet he “ esteemed not to know any thing but Jesus Christ," et Hunc 1 Cor. 2. 2. crucifixum, Him, “and Him crucified.” Meaning respective, as they term it, that the perfection of our knowledge is Christ; and the perfection of our knowledge in or touching Christ, is the knowledge of His Cross and Passion. That the chief “theory.” Nay, in this all; so that see this, and see all.

The view whereof, though it be not restrained to any one time, but all the year long, yea all our life long, ought to be frequent with us ;—and blessed are the hours that are so spent! yet if at any one time more than other, certainly this time, this day may most justly challenge it. For this day was this Scripture fulfilled, and this day are our ears filled full with Scriptures about it. So that though on other days we employ our eyes otherwise, yet that this day at least we would, as exceeding fitly the Apostle wisheth us, ápopậv “cast our eyes from other sights,” and fix them on this object, it being the day dedicate to the lifting up of the Son of Man on high, that He may Joh. 12.32. draw every eye unto Him.

The occasion of the speaking is ever the best key to every speech. The occasion then of this speech was this. The Apostle was to encourage the Hebrews, and in them us all, to hold on the well-begun profession of Christ and His faith. This our profession he expresseth in the former verse in the terms of a race or game, borrowing his similitude from the games of Olympus. For from those games, famous then over all the world, and by terms from them taken, it was common to all writers of that age, both holy and human, to set forth, as in the running the laborious course, so in the prize of it, the glorious reward of a virtuous life.

Which race, truly Olympic, because they and we, the most of us, either stand still, or if we remove do it but slowly, and are ready to faint upon every occasion; that we may run the sooner, and attain the better, two sights he sets before us to comfort us and keep us from fainting. One, a cloud of witnesses, in the first verse, that is the Saints in Heavenwitnesses as able to depose this race may be run, and this

SER M. prize may be won, for they have run the one, and won the III. other long ago.

These look on us now, how well we carry ourselves; and we to look to them, that we may carry ourselves well in the course we have undertaken.

On which cloud when we have stayed our eyes a while, and made them fit for a clearer object, he scattereth the cloud quite, and sets us up a second, even our blessed Saviour His Ownself. And here he willeth us, ápopâv, “to turn our eyes from them," and to turn them hither, and to fasten them here on Jesus Christ, “the Author and Finisher of our faith.” As if he should say; If you will indeed see a sight once for all,

look to Him. The Saints, though they be the guides to us, [Heb.12 2] yet are they but followers to Him. He the 'Apxnyòs, " the

Arch-guide," the Leader of them and us all-Look on Him. They but well willers to our faith, but neither authors nor finishers of it; He, both. Both Author to call us to it, and set us in it; and Finisher to help us through it, and reward us for it :-Look to Ilim. Hunc aspicite is the Apostle's voice, the voice that cometh out of this cloud, for it is the wish of them all, even all the Saints;-Hunc aspicite. At His

appearing therefore the cloud vanisheth. There is a time Jas. 5. 10. when St. James may say, “ Take, my brethren, the Prophets

for an example.” But when He cometh forth That said, Joh. 13. 15. Exemplum dedi vobis, I have given you an example," exemplum

sine exemplo, “an example above all examples;' when He Zech. 2.13 cometh in place, Sileat omnis caro, “Let all flesh keep silence.” Isa. 6. 2. Let all the Saints, yea, the Seraphins themselves cover their

faces with their wings, that we may look on Him, and let all other sights go.

Let us then turn aside to see this great sight. The principal parts thereof are two: 1. The sight itself, that is, the thing to be seen; 2. and the sight of it, that is, the act of seeing it or looking on it.

The whole verse, save the two first words, is of the object or spectacle propounded.“ Jesus the Author, &c.” The two first words, ápopôrtes eis, is the other, the act or duty

enjoined.
[Mat. 19.
But as in

inany
other

cases, so here, Et erunt primi novis30.]

simi, “the first must be last." For though the act, in the verse, stand foremost, yet in nature it is last, and so to be

The division.

1.

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