« السابقةمتابعة »
SECTION, MEMBER, SUBSECTION.
Man's Excellency, Fall, Miseries, Infirmities; The causes
, -,T\ /TAN, the most excellent and noble
Mans excellency creature of the Worldi the prin.
cipal and mighty work of God, wonder of Nature," as Zo, roastes cals him; audacis natura miraculum, "the'marvail of marvails," as Plato; "the bAbridgment and Epitome of the World," as Pliny; Microcosmus, a little world, a model of the world, c Soveraign Lord of the Earth, Viceroy of the World, sole Commander and Governor of all the Creatures in it: to whose Empire they are subject in particular, and yield obedience; far surpassing all the rest, not in body only, but insoul; iImaginis Imago, 'created to God's own f Image, to that immortal and incorporeal substance, with all the faculties and powers belonging unto it; was at first pure, divine, perfect, happy, " « Created after God in true holinesse and righteousnesse;" Deo congruens, free from all manner of infirmities, and put in Paradise, to know God, to praise and glorifie him, to do his will,
"Ut diis consimiles parturiat deos."
(as an old Poet saith) to propagate the Church.
Alan's Fall and Misery. ] But this most noble creature, Heu tristis, & lachrymosa commutatio (h one exclaims) O pitiful change! is fallen from that he was, and for
* Magnum miraculum. k Mundi epitome, naturae delitiae. 'Finis rerum omnium, cui sublunaria serviunt. Scalig. exercit. 365. sec. 3. Vales, de sacr. Phil. c. 5. * Vt in numismate Cuesaris imago, sic m homine Dei. * Gen. 1. 'Imago mundi in corpore, Dei in annua. Exemplumquc dei
'juisq; est in imagine parva. lEph. 4. 24 k Palanterius.
feited his estate, become miserabilis homuncio, a castaway, a caitiff, one of the most miserable creatures of the world, if he be considered in his own nature, an unregenerate man, and so much obscured by his fall that (some few reliques excepted) he is inferiour to a beast, "1 Man in honor that understandefh not, is like unto beasts that perish," so. David esteems him: a monster by stupend Metamorphosis, '•a fox, a dog, a hog, ■what not? Quantummutatus ab illo? How much altered from that he was; before blessed and happy, now miserable and accursed; "1 He must eat his meat in sorrow," subject to death and all manner of infirmities, all kinde of calamities.
A description of Melancholy.] "Great travel is created for all men, and an heavy yoke on the sons of Adam, from the day that they go out of their mother's womb, unto that day they return to the mother of all things. Namely, their thoughts, and fear of their hearts, and their imagination of things they wait for, and the day of death. From him that sitteth in the glorious throne, to him that sitteth beneath in the earch and ashes, From him that is clothed in blue silk, and weareth a Crown, to him that is clothed in simple linnen. Wrath, envy, trouble, and unquictnesse, and fear of death, and rigor, and strife, and such things come to both man and beast, but sevenfold to the ungodly." All this befals him in this life, and peradventure eternal misery in the life to come.
Impulsive cause of man's misery and infirmities,] The impulsive cause of these miseries in man, this privation or destruction of God's image, the cause of death and diseases, of al temporal and eternal punishments, was the sin of our first parent Adam, "in eating of the forbidden fruit, by the devil's instigation and allurement. Mis disobedience, pride, ambition, intemperance, incredulity, curiosity; from whence proceeded original sin, and that general corruption of mankind, as from a fountain flowed all bad inclinations, and actual transgressions, which cause our several calamities inflicted upon us fo* Our sins. And this belike is that which our fabulous Poets have shadowed unto us in the tale of "Pandora's box, which beinj> opened through her curiosity, filled the world full of all manner of diseases. It is not curiosity alone, but those other crying sins of ours, which pull these several plagues and miseries upon our heads. For Ubi peccatum, ibi procella, as fChrysostom well observes, "i Fools by reason of their transgres
'Fsal. 49. 20. k t.nsrivia superat pqiium, impudenlia ranem, astu rulpcm, furore leonem. Clirys. 2'i. Gen. 'Gen. 3. 13. ""Ecclus. 4, I, './, 3, 4,5, ». nGen. 3. 17. "lllacadem tegmo.n manihus Jocussit, & unA l'ernicicsn iutjiiis t miseris mnrtaLbus atr.im. Hesiod. 1. oper. 'Hon1. 5. ad pop. Antioni. *Fsal. 107. 17.
sion, and because of their iniquities, are afflicted. 'Fear cometh like sudden desolation, and destruction like a whirlwinde, affliction and anguish," because they did not fear God, *' 'Are you shaken with wars?" as Cyprian well urgeth to Demetrius, "are you molested with dearth and famine? is your' health crushed with raging diseases? is mankinde generally tormented with Epidemical! maladies? 'tis all for your sins," Hag. 1.9, 10. Amos 1. Jer. 7. God is angry, punisheth, and threatneth, because of their obstinacy and stubbornnesse, they will not turn unto him, "' If the earth be barren then for want of rain, if dry and squalid, it yield no fruit, if your fountains be dried up, your wine, corn, and oyl blasted, if the air be corrupted, and men troubled with diseases, 'tis by reason of their sins:" which like the blood of Abel cry loud to heaven for vengeance, Lam. 5. 15. "That we have sinned, therefore our hearts are heavy," Isa. 59. 11, 12. "We roar like Bears, and mourn like Doves, and want health, &c. for our sins and trespasses." But this we cannot endure to hear, or to take notice of, Jer. 2. 30. "We are smitten in vain, and receive no correction;" and cap. 5. 3. "Thou hast stricken them, but they have not sorrowed, they have refused to receive correction, they have not returned. Pestilence he hath sent, but they have not turned to him," Amos 4. "Herod could not abide John Baptist, nor 1 Domitian endure Apollonius to tell the causes of the plague at Ephesus, his injustice, incest, adultery, and the like.
To punish therefore this blindnesse and obstinacy of ours, as a concomitant cause, and principal agent, is God's just judgement, in bringing these calamities upon us, to chastise us, 1 say for our sinnes, an'l to satisfie God's wrath. For the law requires obedience or punishment, as you may read at large, Deut. 28. 15. "If they will not obey the Lord, and keep his Commandments and ordinances, then all these curses shall come upon them. y Cursed in the towne and in the field, 8cc. 'Cursed in the fruit of the body, &c. "The Lord shall send thee trouble and shame, because of thy wickednesse." And a little after, '• bThe Lord shall smite' thee with the boteh of Egypt, and with emrods, and scab, and iteh, and thou canst not be healed. c With madnesse, blindnesse, and astonishing
'Pro. 1. 27. • Quod autem crebrius bella cocutianr, quod sterilitas k
tarns; lollicitudinem cumulent, quod saevien.ibus morbis valitudo frangitur, quod humanum genus luis populations vastatur; ob peccatum omnia. Cypr.
* Siraro desuper pluvia descendat, si terra situ pulvcris squalleat, si vix jejuna» Se pallidas herbas sterilis gleba producat, si turbo vineam debilitet, &c. Cypr.
* Mat. 14. 3. * Philostratus lib. 8. vit. Apollonii. Injusiitiam ejus, & sceleratas naptias, & esetera quae praeter rationem fecerat, morborura causas dixit.
* 16. » 18. * 80. k Verse 17. « 28. Deus quos diligit, castigat.
of heart." This Paul seconds, Rom. 2. 9. "Tribulation and anguish on the soul of every man that doth evil." Or else these chastisements are inflicted ,upon us for our humiliation, to exercise and try our patience here in this life to bring us home, to make us to know God our selves, to informe and teach us wisdome. "d Therefore is my people gone into captivity, because they had no knowledge, therefore is the wrath of the Lord kindled against his people, and he hath stretehed out his hand upon them." He is desirous of our salvation, 'Nostra saiutis avidus, saith Lemnius, and for that cause puis us by the eare many times, to put us in niinde of our duties: "That they which erred might have understanding, (as Isay speakes 29. 24.) and so to be reformed*. I am afflicted, and at the point of death," so David confesseth of himself, Psal. 88. 15. v. 9. "Mine eyes are sorrowfull through mine affliction:" And that made him turne unto God. Great Alexander in the midst of all his prosperity, by a company of parasites deified, and now made a God, when he saw one of his wounds bleed, remembred that he was but a man, and remitted of his pride. In TTwrbo recolligit se animus, as f Pliny well perceived; "In sicknesse the minde reflects upon it self, with judgement survayes itselfe, and abhorres its former courses;" insomuch that he concludes to his friend Marius, "g that it were the period of all Philosophy, if we could so continue sound, or perform but a part of that which we promised to doe, being sick. Who so is wise then, will consider these things," as David did (Psal. 144. verse last) And whatsoever fortune befall him, make use of it. If he be in sorrow, need, sicknesse, or any other adversity, seriously to recount with himself, why this or that malady, misery, this or that incurable disease is inflicted upon him; it may be for his good, h sic expedit, as Peter said of his daughter's ague. Bodily sicknesse is for his soule's health, periisset nisiperiisset, had he not been visited, he had utterly perished; for "t the Lord correcteth him whom he loveth.even as a father doth his childe in whom he delighteth." If he be safe and sound on the other side, and free from all manner of infirmity; k Sf cut
"Gratia, forma, valetudo contingat abund&
* Isa. 5. 13. Verse 15. 'Nostras saiutis avidus contioenter aures vellicat, ac calamitate subinde nos exercet. Levinus Lenin. 1.3. c. 29. de occult, nat. mil. * Vexatio dayinteUectuni. Isay 28. 19. 'Lib. 1. Cum judicio,
mores & facia recognoscit Sc se intuetur. Dum fero languorem, fcro religionu aimirem: Expert languoris non sum memor hujus amoris. « Summum esse totim Pnilosophiae, ut tales esse perseveremus, quales nos futures esse infirmi profitemur. b Petrarch. 'Prov. 3. 12. * Hor. Epist. lib. 1. 4.