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selves by complaining of others; I shall only crave leave that I may remember Jerusalem, and call to mind the pleasures of the temple, the order of her services, the beauty of her buildings, the sweetness of her songs, the decency of her ministrations, the assiduity and economy of her priests and Levites, the daily sacrifice, and that eternal fire of devotion that went not out by day nor by night; these were the pleasures of our peace; and there is a remanent felicity in the very memory of those spiritual delights which we then enjoyed as ante. pasts of heaven, and consignations to an immortality of joys. And it may be so again when it shall please God, who hath the hearts of all princes in his hand, and turneth them as the rivers of waters; and when men will consider the invaluable loss that is consequent, and the danger of sin that is appendant, to the destroying such forms of discipline and devotion in which God was purely worshipped, and the church was edified, and the people instructed to great degrees of piety, knowledge, and devotion. *
ON THE SAME SUBJECT.
In Orpheus's theatre all beasts and birds assem-
* Polemical Discourses.
cords of the harp; the sound whereof no sooner ceased, or was drowned by some louder noise, but every beast returned to his own nature: wherein is aptly described the nature and condition of men, who are full of savage and unreclaimed desires of profit, of lust, of revenge; which as long as they give ear to precepts, to laws, to religion, sweetly touched with eloquence and persuasion of books, of sermons, of harangues, so long is society and peace maintained; but if these instruments be silent, or sedition and tumult make them not audible, all things dissolve into anarchy and confusion.
We see it ever falleth out that the forbidden writing is always thought to be certain sparks of truth, that fly up into the faces of those that seek to choke it, and tread it out; whereas a book authorised is thought to be but "temporis voces," the language of the time. †
ON THE SAME SUBJECT.
HE that goeth about to persuade a multitude that they are not so well governed as they ought to be, shall never want attentive and favourable hearers ; because they know the manifold defects whereunto every kind of regiment is subject. But the secret lets and difficulties, which in public pro
* Advancement of Learning, book i.
+ Of Church Controversies.
ceedings are innumerable and inevitable, they have not ordinarily the judgment to consider. And because such as openly reprove supposed disorders of state, are taken for principal friends to the common benefit of all, and for men that carry singular freedom of mind; under this fair and plausible colour, whatsoever they utter passeth for good and current. That which wanteth in the weight of their speech is supplied by the aptness of men's minds to accept and believe it. Whereas, on the other side, if we maintain things that are established, we have not only to strive with a number of heavy prejudices deeply rooted in the hearts of men, who think that herein we serve the time and speak in favour of the present state, because thereby we either hold or seek preferment: but also to bear such exceptions, as minds so averted before-hand usually take against that which they are loth should be poured into them.
The stateliness of houses, the goodliness of trees, when we behold them, delighteth the eye: but that foundation which beareth up the one, that root which ministereth unto the other nourishment and life, is in the bosom of the earth concealed: and if there be occasion at any time to search into it, such labour is then more necessary than pleasant, both to them which undertake it, and for the lookers on. In like manner the use and benefit of good laws, all that live under them may enjoy
* Ecclesiastical Polity, book i. sect. 1.
with delight and comfort, albeit the grounds and first original causes from whence they have sprung, be unknown, as to the greatest part of men they
Since the time that God did first proclaim the edicts of his law upon the world, heaven and earth have hearkened unto his voice, and their labour hath been to do his will. - He made a law for the rain ;" he gave his " decree unto the sea, that the waters should not pass his commandment.” Now if nature should intermit her course, and leave, altogether, though it were for awhile, the observation of her own laws, if those principal and mother elements of the world, whereof all things in this lower world are made, should lose the qualities which now they have; if the frame of that heavenly arch erected over our heads, should loosen and dissolve itself; if celestial spheres should forget their wonted motions, and by irregular volubility turn themselves any way as it may happen; if the prince of the lights of heaven,
as a giant, doth run his unwearied course, should as it were through a languishing faintness, begin to stand and to rest himself; if the moon should wander from her beaten
the times and seasons of the year blend themselves by disordered and confused mixture, the winds breathe out their last gasp, the clouds yield no rain, the earth be defeated of heavenly influence, the fruits of the earth pine away, as children at the withered breasts of their mother no longer able to yield them relief; what would become of man himself,
whom these things do now all serve? See we not plainly, that obedience of creatures unto the law of nature is the stay of the whole world ?*
Of Law there can be no less acknowledged than that her seat is in the bosom of God; her voice the harmony of the world; all things in heaven and earth do her homage; the very least as feeling her care, and the greatest as not exempted from her power. Both angels and men, and creatures of what condition soever, though each in different sort and manner, yet all with uniform consent, admiring her as the mother of their peace and joy.†
FROM SERMON ENTITLED 'THE HOUSE of
'Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die.'
1. Plenty, and the pleasures of the world are no proper instruments of felicity.
2. Intemperance is a certain enemy to felicity. 1st. It is an enemy to health.
2ndly. Intemperance is an impure fountain of vice, and a direct nurse of uncleanness. 3rdly. Intemperance is a destruction of wisdom.
* Ecclesiastical Polity, book i. sect. 3. + Ibid. book i. sect. 16.
Sermon xv. and xvi.