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SERM. hazard of our soul, or a few days of vanity with the loss IV.

of eternity

Remember, we slack not our pace, nor stand still on the plain. For if we stand still, by still standing we are meet to be made a pillar, even to stand still, and never to remove.

Remember, we look not back, either with her on the vain Joh. 21.20. delights of Sodom left; or with Peter on St. John behind us,

to say, Domine, Quid iste ? both will make us forget our Lu. 9. 62. following “ None that casteth his eye the other way,” is

EŬDetos, “meet” as he should be, “meet for the Kingdom of God."

But specially remember we leave not our heart behind us, but that we take that with us, when we go out of Sodom ; for if that stay, it will stay the feet, and writhe the eye, and neither the one nor the other will do their duty. Remember, that our heart wander not, that our heart long not. This

care, if it be fervent, will bring us perseverance. Out of her Now, that we may the better learn somewhat out of punish

her punishment too; let us remember also, that as to her, so to us, God may send some unusual visitation, and take us suddenly away, and in the act of sin too.

Remember the danger and damage; it is no less matter we are about, than perdet animam. Which if we do, we frustrate and forfeit all the fruit of our former well-continued course; all we have done is vain. Yea, all that Christ hath done for us is in vain ; Whose pains and sufferings we ought specially to tender, knowing that supra omnem laborem labor irritus, no labour to lost labour;' and Christ then hath lost His labour for us.

Remember the folly; that “ beginning in the Spirit” we “end in the flesh;” turning our backs to Zoar, we turn our face to Sodom; joining to a head of fine gold feet of clay, and to a precious foundation a covering of thatch.

Remember the disgrace; that we shall lose our credit and

account while we live, and shall hear that of Christ, Hic Mat. 11. 7. homo ; and that other, Quid existis in desertum videre ? A reed

shaken with the wind."

Remember the scandal; that, falling ourselves, we shall be

a block for to make others fall; a sin no lighter, nor less, nor Mat. 18. 6. lighter than a mill-stone.

Gal. 3. 3.

Remember the infamy; that we shall leave our memory remaining in stories, among Lot's wife, and Job's wife, Demas and Ecebolius, and the number of relapsed, there to stand to be pointed at, no less than this heap of salt.

Remember the judgment that is upon them after their relapse, though they live, that they do even with her here obrigescere, 'wax hard and numb,' and serve others for a caveat, wholly unprofitable for themselves.

Remember the difficulty of reclaiming to good ;-“ seven evil spirits” entering instead of one, that their “last state is Mat. 12. 45. worse than the first.”

And lastly, Remember that we shall justify Sodom by so doing, and her frozen sin shall condemn our melting virtue. For they in the wilfulness of their wickedness persisted till fire from Heaven consumed them; and they being thus obdurate in sin, ought not she, and we much more, to be constant in virtue ? And if the drunkard hold out till he have lost his eyes, the unclean person till he have wasted his loins, the contentious till he have consumed his wealth, Quis pudor quod infelix populus Dei non habet tantam in bono perseverantiam, quantam mali in malo! What shame is it, that God's unhappy people should not be as constant in virtue, as these miscreants have been, and be in vice!

Each of these by itself, all these put together will make a full memento, which if she had remembered, she had been a pillar of light in Heaven, not of salt in earth. It is too late for her—we in due time yet may remember it.

And when we have remembered these, remember Christ too that gave the memento; that He calleth Himself Alpha Rev. 1. 8. and Omeganot only Alpha for His happy beginning, but Omega for His thrice happy ending. For that He left us not, nor gave over the work of our redemption, till He brought it to consummatum est. And that on our part, summa religionis est imitari Quem colis, 'the highest act of religion, is for the Christian to conform himself, not to Lot's wife, but to Christ, Whose name he weareth. And though verus amor non sumit vires de

• true love indeed receiveth no manner strength from hope,' but, though it hope for nothing, loveth nevertheless; yet to quicken our love, which oft is but faint, and for a full memento, remember the reward. Remember how

spe,

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Ezek. 9. 4.

SERM. Christ will remember us for it; which shall not be the

wages IV.

of an hireling, or lease-wise for time, and term of years, but aiôves aióvwv, eternity itself, never to expire, end, or determine, but to last and endure for ever and ever.

But this reward, saith Ezekiel, is for those, whose foreheads are marked with Tau, which, as Omega in Greek, is the last letter in the Hebrew alphabet, and the mark of consummatum est among them; they only shall escape the wrath to come.

And this crown is laid up for them, not of whom it may be Gal. 5,7. said, currebatis bene, “ye did run well;" but for those that can 2 Tim. 4. 7. say with St. Paul, cursum consummavi, “I have finished my

course well.”

And, thanks be to God, we have not hitherto wanted this salt, but remembered Lot's wife well. So that this exhortation, because we have prevented and done that which it calleth for, changeth his nature and becometh a commendation, as all others do. A commendation I say; yet not so much of the people, whose only felicity is to serve and be subject to one that is constant-for otherwise we know how wavering a thing the multitude is--as of the Prince, whose constant standing giveth strength to many a weak knee otherwise. And blessed be God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, that we stand in the presence of such a Prince, who hath ever accounted of perseverance, not only as of Regina virtutum, 'the Queen of virtues, but as of virtus Reginarum, the virtue of a Queen.' Who, like Zerubbabel, first by princely magnanimity laid the corner-stone in a troublesome time; and since, by heroical constancy, through many both alluring proffers and threatening dangers, hath

brought forth the Head-stone also with the Prophet's acclama[Zech.4.7.] tion, “ Grace, grace, unto it”—Grace, for so happy a begin

ning, and Grace for so thrice happy an ending. No terrors, no enticement, no care of her safety hath removed her from her steadfastness; but with a fixed eye, with straight steps, with a resolute mind, hath entered herself, and brought us into Zoar. It is a little one, but therein our souls shall live; and we are in safety, all the cities of the plain being in combustion round about us. Of whom it shall be remembered, to

her high praise, not only that of the Heathen, Illaque virgo viri; 2 Chron. but that of David, that all her days she served God “with a 13. 5.

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covenant of salt,” and with her Israel, from the first day until

And of this be we persuaded, that “He which began (Phil. 1. 7.1 this good work in her, will perform it unto the day of Jesus Christ,” to her everlasting praise, comfort, and joy, and in her to the comfort, joy, and happiness of us all.

Yet it is not needless, but right requisite, that we which are the Lord's remembrancers put you in mind, that as perseverance is the

queen of virtues, quia ea sola coronatur; so is it also, quia Satanas ei soli insidiatur, 'for that all Satan's malice, [S. Berand all his practices are against it.' The more careful need we to Epist

. 32.

ad fin.] be, to carry in our eye this example. Which God grant we may, and that our hearts may seriously regard, and our memories carefully keep it, Ut hæc columna fulciat nos, et hic sal condiat nos, “that this pillar may prop our weakness, and this salt season our sacrifice,' that it may be remembered, and accepted, and rewarded in the day of the Lord! Which, &c.

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A SERMON

PREACHED IN

THE COURT AT RICHMOND,

ON TUESDAY, BEING THE FIFTH OF MARCH, A. D. MDXCVI.

LUKE xvi. 25.

Son, remember that thou, in thy life time, receivedst thy pleasure

(or, good things;) and likewise Lazarus pains : Now therefore

is he comforted, and thou art tormented. Fili, recordare quia recepisti bona in vita tua, et Lazarus similiter

mala : nunc autem hic consolatur, tu vero cruciaris. [Son, remember that thou in thy life-time receivedst thy good things,

and likewise Lazarus eril things; but now he is comforted, and

thou art tormented. Engl. Trans. ] SERM. This Scripture hath the name given it in the very first V.

words; Recordare fili, Son, remember:"—it is a remembrance.

There be many sermons of remembrance here on earth; this is one from Heaven, from the mouth of Abraham. Not

now on earth but in Heaven, and from thence beholding, 1 Cor.1312 "not in a glass or dark speech," but intuitive, that which he Joh. 19.35. telleth us; and “He that saw it bare witness, and His witness

is true.”

Which may somewhat move attention; or if that will not, let me add farther, That it is such a remembrance, that it toucheth our estate in everlasting life; that is, the well or evil hearing of this recordare is as much as our eternal life is worth. For we find both in it. That our comfort or torment eternal comfort in Abraham's bosom, torment in the fire of hell—depend upon it; and therefore as much as we regard them, we are to regard it.

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