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Neo. I pray you, sir, let us, in the next place, hear what is the duty of our wills.
Evan. The duty of our wills is to choose the Lord alone for our our portion, Psalm xvi. 5. and cxix. 47.
Neo. And how must we express that we have chosen the Lord for our portion ?
Evan. “By our loying him with all our hearts, with all our souls, and with all our might,” Deut. v. 6.
Neo. And how must we express that we do thus love the Lord ?
Evan. We must express that we do thus love the Lord, by the acting of our other affections, as by our desire of most near communion with him, Phil. i. 23. and by our delighting most in him, Psalm xxxvii. 4; and by our rejoicing most in him, Phil. iv. 4: and by our fearing most to offend him, Matt. x. 28; and by our sorrowing most for offending him, Luke xxii. 62; and by being most zealous against sin, and for the glory of God, Rev. iii. 19. And thus have I showed you what the Lord requires in the affirmative part of this commandment.
Neo. I pray you, sir, proceed to the negative part, and show us what the Lord forbids in this commandment.
Evan. In this first commandment is forbidden “ignorance of God," Jer, iv. 22; so also is unbelief, or doubting of the truth of God's word, Isa. vii. 9. And so also is the want of fearing the threatenings of God, Deut. xxviii. 58, and the fearing the threatenings of men, either more, or as much as the threatenings of God, Isa. li. 12, 13; and so also is the want of trusting unto or relying upon the promises of God, Luke xii. 29, and the trusting or relying upon ourselves, men's promises, or any other thing, either more, or as much as we do upon God, Jer. xvii. 5; Luke xii. 20. And so also is the want of acknowledging the hand of God, in the time of affliction, Isa. xxvi. 11; and acknowledging that the rod can smite without the band of God, Job xix. 11; and so also is the want of humbling ourselves before the Lord, Dan. v. 22; and pride of heart, Prov. xvi. 5. And so also is impatience and discontentedness under the chastising hand of God, Exod. xvii. 2; and not returning unto him that smiteth us, Isa. ix, 13; and so also is our forgetfulness of God in not acknowledging his merciful and bountiful hand in reaching forth all good things unto us in the time of prosperity, Psalm lxxviii. 11; Deut. xxxii. 18; and so also is our sacrificing to our own nets, (Hab. i. 10,) in ascribing the coming in of our riches to our own care, pains, and diligence in our callings, Deut. viii, 17; and so also is unthankfulness to the Lord for his mercies, Rom. i. 21; and so also is our want of love to God, 1 Cor. xvi. 22; and our
loving any creature either more than God, or equal with God, Matt. x. 37: and so also is our want of desiring his presence, Job xxi. 14; and our desiring the presence of any creature either more or so much as God, Prov. vi. 25; and so also is our want of rejoicing in God, Deut. xxviii. 47; and our rejoicing either more, or as much in any thing as in God, Luke x. 20; and so also is our want of fearing to offend God, Jer. v. 22; and our fearing to offend any mortal man, either more or as much as to offend God, Prov. xxix. 25; and so also is our want of sorrow and grief for offending God, 1 Cor. v. 2; and our sorrowing more, or as much, for any worldly loss or cross, as for our sinning against God, 1 Thess. iv. 15; and so also is our want of zeal, or our lukewarmness in the cause of God and his truth, Rev. iii. 16; and our corrupt, blind, and indiscreet zeal, Luke ix. 55. And thus have I showed unto you what the Lord requires, and what he forbids in this commandment. And now, neighbour Nomologista, I pray you, tell me whether you think you keep it perfectly or no ?
Nom. Sir, before I tell you that, I pray you tell me how you prove that the Lord in this commandment requires all these duties, and forbids all these sins?
Evan. First, I know that the Lord in this commandment requires all these duties, because no man can truly bave the Lord for his God, except he have chosen him for his portion; and no man can truly choose the Lord for his portion, before he truly know him: and he that does truly know God, does truly believe both his threatenings and his promises ; and he that does truly believe the Lord's threatenings, must needs fear and tremble at them; and he that does believe the Lord's promises, must needs truly love him, for faith always produces and brings forth love; and whosoever does truly love God, must needs desire near communion with him ; yea, and rejoice in communion with him; yea, and fear to offend him; yea, and sorrow for offending him; yea, and be zealous for his glory.
Secondly, I know that all these sins are forbidden in this commandment, because that whatsoever the mind, will, and affections of men are set upon, or carried after, either more or as much as after God, that is another god unto him; and therefore, if a man stand in fear of any creature, or fear the loss of any creature, either more than God, or equal with God, he makes that creature his god : and if he trust unto, and put confidence in any creature, either more than in God, or equal with God, that creature is his god; and hence it is that the covetous man is called an idolater, Eph. v. 5, for that he makes his goid his hope, and says to the fine gold, “ Thou art my confidence," Job xxxi. 24. And if any man be proud of any good thing he has, and do not acknowledge God to be the free giver and bestower of the same, or if he be impatient and discontented under the Lord's correcting hand, he makes himself a god; and if a man so love any creature as that he desires it being absent, or delights in it being present, either more than God, or equal with God, that creature is another god unto him. And hence it is, that voluptuous men are said to make their belly their god, Phil. iii. 19. In a word, whatsoever the mind of man is carried after, or his heart and affections set upon, either more, or as much as apon God, that he makes his god. And therefore we may undoubtedly conclude, that all the sins before mentioned, are forbidden in this commandment.
Nom. Then believe me, sir, I must confess that I come far short of keeping this commandment perfectly.
Evan. Yea, and so we do all of us, I am confident; for hape not every one of us sometimes questioned in our hearts, whether there be a God or no? And as touching the knowledge of God, may not we all three of us truly say with the apostle, 1 Cor. xiii. 9, “ We know in part.” And which of us has so feared and trembled at the threatenings of God, and at the shaking of bis rod, as we ought? Nay, have we not feared the frowns, threats, and power of some mortal man, more than the frowns, threats, and power of God? It is well if it have not appeared by our choosing to obey man rather than God: and which of us has so trusted unto, and relied upon the promises of God in time of need, as he ought? nay, have we not rather trusted unto and relied upon men and means, than upon God ? Has it not been manifested by our fearing of poverty, and want of outward things, when friends, trading, and means begin to fail us; though God has said, “I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee"? Heb. xiii. 5. And which of us has so humbled ourselves under the chastening and correcting hand of God as we ought: nay, have we not rather expressed abundance of pride, by our impatience and discontentedness, and want of submitting to the will of God; and by our quarrelling and contending with his rod. And which of us has so acknowledged God in the time of prosperity, and been so thankful unto him for his blessings, as we ought? Nay, have we not rather at such times forgotten God, and sacrificed to our own nets, saying in our hearts, if not also with our mouths, “I may thank mine own diligence, care and pains-taking, or else it had not been with me as it is ?" And which of us hath so mapi. fested our love to God, by our desire of near communion with him in his ordinances and by our desire to be dissolved and to be with
him, as we ought? Nay, have we not rather expressed our great want of love to him, by our backwardness to prayer, reading, and hearing his word, and receiving the sacrament, and by our little delight therein, and by our unwillingness to die? Nay, have we not manifested our greater love to the world, by our greater desires after the profits, pleasures, and honours of the world, and by our greater delight therein than in God? Or which of us have so mani. fested our love to God, by our sorrow and grief for offending him, as we ought? Nay, havo we not rather manifested our greater love to the world, by our sorrowing and grieving more for some worldly loss or cross, than for offending God by our sins? Or which of us have so manifested our love to God, by being so zealous for his glory as we ought? Nay, have we not rather expressed greater love to ourselves, in being more hot and fiery in our own cause than in God's cause? And thus have I endeavoured to satisfy your desires concerning the first commandment.
Neo. I beseech you, sir, proceed to do the like concerning the second commandment, and first tell us how the first and second commandments differ the one from the other.
Evan. Why, as the first commandment teaches us to have the true God for our God, and none other; so the second commandment requireth that we worship this true God alone, with true worship: and in this commandment likewise, there is a negative part expressed in these words, "Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven image,” &c. And an affirmative part included in these words, " But thou shalt worship me only and purely, according to my will, revealed in my word.”
Neo. I pray you then, sir, begin with the affirmative part, and tell us what be the means of God's worship, prescribed in his word.
Evan. If we look into the word of God, we shall find that the ordinary means and parts of God's worship, are invocations upon the name of God, ministry and hearing of the word of God, administration and receiving the sacraments, with all helps and furtherances to the right performance of the same.
But to declare this more particularly, First of all, prayer both public and private is required in God's word, as you may see, 1 Tim. ii. 8; Acts ii. 21, 22; Dan. vi. 10. Secondly, Reading the word, or bearing it read, both publicly and privately, is required in God's word, as you may see, Rev. i. 3; Deut. v. 6. Thirdly, Preaching, and hearing of the word preached, is required in the word of God, as you may see, 2 Kings iv. 2; 1 Thess. ii. 13. Fourthly, The administration and receiving the sacrament is required in the word of God, as you may see, Matt. iii. 6. and xxvi. 26; 1 Cor. x. 16. Fifthly, Praising of God, in singing of psalms, both publicly and privately, is required in the word of God, as you may see, Col. iii. 16; James v. 13. Sixthly, Meditation on the word of God is required in the word of God, as you may see, Psalm i. 2; Acts xvii. 11. Seventhly, Conference about the word of God is required in the word of God, as you may see, Mal. iii. 16. And, Lastly, For the better fitting and stirring us up to the right performance of these duties, religious fasting, both in public and in private, is required in the word of God, as you may see, Joel i. 14, and ii. 15. And so also is a religious vow or free promise made to God, to perform some outward work, or bodily exercise for some end, as you may see, Eccl. v. 3, 4. And thus have I shown you what be the means of God's worship which he has prescribed in his word.
Neo. I pray you, sir, then proceed to the negative part, and tell us what the Lord forbiddeth in this commandment ?
Evan. Well then, I pray you understand, that in this commandment is forbidden, neglecting of prayer, as you may see, Psalm xiv. 4. And so also is absenting ourselves from the hearing of the word preached, or any other ordinance of God, when the Lord calls us thereunto, as you may see, Luke xiv. 18—20. And so also is our rejecting the sacrament of baptism, as you may see, Luke vii. 30. And so also is our slighting the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, as you may see, 2 Chron. xxx. 10. And so also is the slighting and omitting any of the other forenamed duties, as you may see, Psalm x. 4; John iii. 31 ; Isa. xxii. 12–14. And so also is praying to saints and angels, as you may see, Isa. Ixiii. 16; Rev. xix. 10. And so also is the making of images for religious uses, as you may see, Lev. xix. 4. And so also is the representing God by an image, as you may see, Exod. xxxii. 8, 9. Aud so also is all carnal imaginations of God in his worship, as you may see, Acts xvii. 29. And so also is all will worship, or the worshipping of God according to our own fancy, as you may see, 1 Sam. ix. 10, 13; Col. ii. 23. And thus have I shown unto you both what the Lord requireth, and what he forbiddeth in this commandment, and now, neighbour Nomologista, I pray you, tell me whether you keep it perfectly or no ?
Nom. Yea, sir, I am persuaded that I go very near it. But, I pray you, sir, tell me how you prove that all these duties are required, and all these sins forbidden in this commandment ?
Evan. For the proof of this, I pray you consider, that the worshipping of false gods is flatly forbidden in the negative part of this