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to pledge him that confecrates the first glass to the health of the king, or any person of eminency. I leave it ftill to your reason to be judge,

1. Whether the king have cause to account the manifeft breach of the laws by which he governs, to be a fignal expreffion of his fubjects loyalty to him? Is not his royal authority, his honour and fafety in his laws? And is he not finely ho- . noured, think you, by fuch drunken loyalty as this? Gentlemen, you have a king over you of founder intellectuals, and more exemplary temperance and fobriety than to be thus impofed upon.

2. Can you think he reckons his health in the leaft degree advanced or fecured by the ruin and fubverfion of his fubjects health? No, no; did the genteeleft drunkards in England enquire, they would quickly find, it would more please him if they would confult their own health better, and pray for his more fincerely and fervently than they do.

Excufe VI. Your last excufe is, that you have plentiful eftates that will bear it; and fince your pockets are full, why fhould your heads or ftomachs be empty.

Quest. The only question I would here ftate, and leave your own reason to determine, is this, whether you think the experience of the redundancy and over-plus of your estates in excefs and drunkennefs, be the very end and defign God aimed at, in beftowing those things with fuch a bountiful hand upon you? And whether the expence of it in this way, will please him as well, as if you cloathed the naked, and fed the hungry with it, and brought the bleffings of them that are ready to perish, upon you and your families? Ah, gentlemen, you must come to a day of reckoning. Your reasons and confciences can never tell you, you can make up as comfortable an account with God, by fetting down fo many hundred pounds in wine and strong drink, more than was neceffary or beneficial: Item, So many thousand pounds loft in play: So much upon whores; as if you fet down fo much to feed and cloath the naked and hungry. So that all your excuses for this fin are baffled by your own reason; and it was easy to conclude, that such a traitor to reafon as drunkenness is, which hath fo often dethroned it, could not poffibly receive a more favourable judgment and sentence than this now given upon it.

Let all drunkards henceforth confider, what a voluntary madnefs the fin of drunkenness is, how it unnans them, and fers

them below the very brutes. A grave rightly,

"A diftemper of the head, a fubverfion of the senses, a tem "peft in the tongue, the ftorm of the body, the fhipwreck of

virtue, the lofs of time, a wilful madnefs, a pleasant evil, á "fugared poifon, a fweet fin, which he that hath, hath not "himself; and he that commits it, doth not only commit fin, "but himself is altogether fin."

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The

It is a fin at which the moft fober Heathens blushed. policy of the Spartans was more commendable than their piety in making men drunk, that their children might gaze upon them as a monfter, and be feared for ever from fuch an horrid practice. He that is mastered by drunkenness, can never be master of his own counfels. Both reason and religion condemn this courfe. Make a pause therefore where you are, and rather throw that wine or beer upon the ground, which elfe will caft thy body upon the ground, and thy foul and body into hell.

С НА P. V.

Containing the refult and issue of the third confultation with reaJon, upon the cafe of uncleanness; and the true report of the determination of every man's reafon, with respect there

unto.

§

THE

HE bountiful and indulgent God hath made more abundant provifion for the pleasure and delight of rational, than of brutal beings: And his wife and righteous laws order and limit their pleasures to their great advantage; his allowance under thofe reftrictions being large and full enough. Both reafon and experience affure us, that the trueft pleafures are most freely and honourably to be enjoyed within the pale and boundary of his laws; and that there are none fit for the enjoyment of a man or Chriftian, to be found without, or beyond them.

That prudent owner provides best för his cattle, who puts

Turbatio capitis, fubverfio fenfus, tempeftas linguæ, procellà corporis, naufragium virtutis, amiffio temporis, infania voluntaria, blande daemon, dulce venenum, fuave peccatum, quam qui habet, feipfam non habet, quam qui facit, peccatum non tantum facit, fell ipfe totus eft peccatum.

them into inclosed fragrant fields, where they have plenty of proper and pleasant food, fweet and pure fprings of water, the pleasant covert of fhady trees, and all that is either neceffary or convenient for them; altho' thofe fields be fo inclofed with in pales or walls, that they cannot ftray without those boundaries, into other mens grounds, to be by them impounded, and brought back lank tired, and dirty, to their owner; or by ftraying into wastes and wilderneffes, fall a prey (as ftragglers ufe to do) to wolves and lions.

God envies not any true, rational, and proper pleasure to men or women; when he bounds them in by his command, within the allowance whereof, fufficient provifion is made for the benefit and delight of propagation. And though it be all men's duty to tremble at the awful folemnity, yet it would be any man's fin to repine and murmur at the strictness and feverity of his command, delivered with thunder and lightning from mount Sinai, Thou shalt not commit adultery. Man's honourable liberty, and God's wife and just restraint and limitation thereof, are both fet together before our eyes, in that one fcripture, Heb. xiii. 4. " Marriage is honourable in all, " and the bed undefiled; but whoremongers and adulterers "God will judge." Here is a liberal allowance granted, and a fevere punishment threatned for the inordinacies and exorbi tancies of boundlefs and ungovernable lufts. God will judge with temporal judgments in this world; and upon impenitent perfiftents, with eternal judgments in the world to come.

§ 2. Such is the corruption of man's nature by the fall, that it hates inclosures, restraints, and limitations. Thefe things which were intended to regulate, ferve only to sharpen and enrage their fenfual appetite. No fruit fo fweet to corrupt nature, as forbidden fruit. Nitimur in vetitum femper, cupimufque negata. The very reftraiut of evil, makes it look like a pleasant and defirable good. Sons of Belial can endure no yoke of restraint. There is a great truth in that obfervation of the divine Herbert, That if God had laid all common, man himself would have been the inclofer. For his reafon and experience would have plainly informed him of the great and manifold advantages of diftinction and propriety. How many quarrels and barbarous murders have been occafioned by whores! which by keeping within God's bounds and rules, had been both honeftly and honourably prevented.

Were men left to that liberty brutes are, to scatter their lufts promifcuously, fathers would not know their own children,

VOL. VIII.

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nor children their fathers; whereby both their duties and com-
forts would be prefcinded together. Such mifchiefs as these,
would make men glad of that inclosure, which the laws of
God have made for them. But behold with admiration the
perverfe wickednefs of corrupt nature, manifefted in this, that
because God hath inclosed and secured their relations to them
by his laws, (which inclofure is every way to their advantage);
yet
this makes their lufts the more head-firong and outrage-
ous, and they cannot take that comfort in their own, because
their own, that they think to find in another's, because another's.
Remarkable to this purpose is that * relation of Mr. Firmin's,
I which he received from his near relation, who was minifter to
the company of English merchants in Pruffia. The conful,
or governor of that company, being a married man, and that
to a very proper and comely woman, was yet enflaved to others,
not to be compared with his own wife for comelinefs. This
minifter dealt with him about it. One argument he urged, was
this: That of all men he had the leaft temptation, having a wife
fo comely, that few women were like her. He answered, yea,
were the not my wife, I could love her. Had fhe been his whore,
he could have loved her; he thought none like her; but
because fhe was his wife, hedged in by God, he cared not for
her. O what hearts have men, that they fhould ever think that
to be beft for them which is moft crofs to God! Why fhould
ftolen waters be sweeter than thofe of our own fountains?

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§3. God's choice muft needs be far better for us, than our own. Ordinate and lawful pleafures and enjoyments, are far better and fweeter, than exorbitant and forbidden ones. And the reason is evident and undeniable: For amongst all the operations of the mind, its reflex acts are the acts that beft relifh pleasure. And indeed, without felf-reflection, a man cannot tell whether he delights or no. All fenfe of pleasure implies fome reflection of the mind: And thofe pleasures of a man muft needs be the sweetest, which afford the sweetest reflections upon them afterward; and those the basest pleasures, which are accompanied and followed with prefent regret, or the flinging and cutting reflections of the confcience upon them afterwards.

1. Lawful and ordinate enjoyments, are as honey without the fting: Forbidden pleasures, are embittered and extinguished by these regrets and reflections of the confcience. They * are like thofe pleafant fruits, which the Spainards found in

*Real Chriftian, p. 60.

the Indies, which were fweet to the tafte, but fo environed, and armed on every fide with dangerous briars and thorns, that they tore not only their cloaths off their backs, but the skin off their flesh, to come at them; and therefore they cal led them comfits in hell. And fuch are all forbidden, and unlawful pleasures.

A merchant (faith the fore-named author †) dining with, the friars at Dantzick, his entertainment was very noble. After he had dined, and seen all, the merchant fell to commending their pleasant life. Yea, faid one of the friars to him, we • live gallantly indeed, if we had any body to go to hell for us when we die.' You fee what mingles with mens sensual and finful lufts.

2. Your honour is fecured, by keeping within God's bounds and limits: Marriage is honourable in all. Here guilt can neither wrong your confciences, nor infamy your reputations. Fornicators and adulterers go up and down the world, as men. burnt in the hand: Their confcience lashes them within; and men point at them abroad. They are a terror to themselves, and a scorn to men..

3. The health of the body is fecured by chafte and regular enjoyments, but expofed to deftruction the other way. God hath plagued the inordinacy of mens lufts, with moft ftrange and horrid difeafes. That Morbus Gallicus, Sudor Anglicus, and Plica Polonica, were judgments fent immediately by God's own hand, as the witneffes of his high difpleasure, against the bold and daring contemners of his facred and awful command. Thus, as Prov. v. II. “ They mourn at laft, when their flesh " and body are confumed." Other fins are committed in the body; but this against it, as well as in it.

4. The blast and waste of our eftates (which is the ufual confequence of uncleannefs) is prevented and avoided, by keeping within God's rules. The truth of what the scripture tells us, Prov. x. 5. is often exemplified before our eyes; that, "by reafon of a whorish woman, a man is brought to a mor"fel of bread." Adultery gives a man rags for his livery; it lodgeth his substance in the house of strangers, and entails wants and curfes on him and his.

In

5. a word, continence, or lawful marriage, expofes not the foul to the eternal wrath of God, as uncleannefs doth; Cor. vi. 9, 10. This fin does not only fhut a man out of his

+ Real Chriftian p. 63.

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