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church often helps the world, it receives many benefits from the people of God; and fometimes God over-rules the world to help his church.
5. When the chaff and wheat are both brought forth and held up to the wind in one sieve, they fall two ways; the wheat falls down upon the floor or sheet, the chaff is carried quite away: So that although for a time godly and ungodly abide together, yet when this winnowing-time comes, God's wheat fhall be gathered into his garner in heaven, the chaff shall go the other way, Matth. iii. 12.
6. If there be any chaff among the corn, it will appear when it is fifted in a windy day; it cannot possibly escape, if it be well winnowed; much more impossible it is for any wicked man to escape the critical search of God in that day; the clo: Left hypocrite fhall chen be detected, for God will judge the secrets of men, 2 Cor. xvi. “ He will then bring to light the “ hidden things of darkness, and make manifest the counsels “ of the heart, 1 Cor. iv. 5
7. Laply, After corn and chaff are separated by the winnowitig wind, they shall never lie together in one heap any more : The wicked shall fee Abraham, and Ifaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but themselves thrust out : There is no chaff in heaven.
REFLECTION S. 1. Am I an empty vain profeffor, that wants
A refletion the pith and substance of real godliness? Then am I but chaff in God's account, though I grow for a close hy. among his corn; the eye of man cannot discern pocrite. my hypocrisy; but when he comes, whose fan is in his hand, then how plainly will it be detected ? Angels and men shall difcern it, and say, “ Lo, this is the man that made not God his “ hope;" How shall I abide the day of his coming ? Christ is the great heart-anatomist: Things thall not be carried then by names and parties, as they are now; every one shall be weigh. ed in a juft balance, and a Mene Tekel written upon every false heart: Great will be the perspicuity of that trial : My own conscience shall join with my judge, and shall then acknow. ledge, that there is not one drop of injustice in all that sea of wra:h; and though I am damned, yet I am not wronged : The chaff cannot stand before the wind, nor I before the judgment of Christ.
2. Is there such a fanning time coming? Why do not I then lift my heart every day by ferious self-examination ? No wyork VOL. VI.
more important to me, and yet how A reflection for one much have I neglected it? O my soul! that neglects self-ex- thou hadît been better imployed, in amination.
searching thine own estate in reference
to that day, thau in prying sinfully into the hearts, and censuring the conditions of other men: Judge thyself, and thou thalt not be condemned with the world; the work indeed is difficult, but the neglect dangerous : Were I within a few days to stand at man's bar, there to be tried for my life, how busy should I be every hour of the day in writing to any that I thought could befriend me, and fudying every advantage to 'myself? And yet what a vast difference is there betwixt man's bar and God's? Betwixt a trial for my life, and for my soul? Lord, rouse up my fluggish heart, by awful and folicitous, thoughts of that day, left I be found among that chaf which shall be burnt up with unquenchable fire.
5. Fear not, O my foul! though there be A reflection for a blast coming which thall drive all the chaff a sincere souls into hell, yet it shall blow thee no harm. “I
u know thiat when he hath tried me, I shall 66. come forth as gold,” Job xxiii. 10. I confess I have too much shaff about me, but yet I am not altogether chaff, there is a folid work of grace upon my soul that will abide the trial: Let the judgment to come be as impartial and exact as it is possible to be, yet a grain of fincerity cannot be loft in it; for “ God: “ will not calt away a perfect (i. e. au upright-hearted) man," Job viii. 20. He that is appointed to judge the world is mine ; and his imputed righteoufaefs wilt make me full weight in the
balance. Bless the Lord, O my foul, for fincerity! this will · abide, when common gifts, and empty names, will flee as the chaff before the wind.
Whose weight and solid substance can endure
Their souls are in, who cannot hope to stand
To the SECOND PART of
OW is it, reader, have I tired thee, H Η
Whilst thro' these pleasant fields thou walk'st with me?
Our path was pleafant; but if length of way
CH A P. 1.
Upon the Ingraffing of Fruit-trees
Ungraffed trees can never bear good fruit ;
and never graffed or renioved from its native soil, may bear tome fruit, and that fair and beautiful to the eye; but it will give you no content at all in cating, being always harsh, four, and unpleasant to the taste; but if fuch a stock be removed into a good foil, and graffed with a better kind, it may become a good tree, and yield store of choice
and pleafant fruit
. APPLICATIO N. Nregenerate men, who never were acquainted with the
mystery of spiritual union with Jesus Christ, but ftill grow upon their natural root, old Adam, may, by the force and power of natural principles, bring forth foine fruit, which, like the wild hedge-fruit we speak of, may, indeed, be fair and pleaSant to the eyes of men, but God takes no pleasure at all in it; it is sour, harsh, and distasteful to him, because it springs not from the Spirit of Christ, Ifa. i. 13. « I cannot away with it, it « is iniquity," &c. But that I may not entangle the thread of my discourse, I shall (as in the former chapters) set before you a parallel betwixt the best fruits of natural men, and those of a wild ungraffed tree.
1. The root that bears this wild fruit is a degenerate root, and that is the cause of all this fourness and harshness in the fruit it bears; it is the feed of some better tree accidentally blown, or cast into some waste and bad foil, wbere not being manured and ordered aright, it is turned wild : So all the fruits
of unregenerate men flow from the first Adam, a corrupt and degenerate root; he was indeed planted a right seed, but soon turned a wild and degenerate plant; he being the root from which every man naturally springs, corrupts all the fruit that any man bears from him. It is observed by Gregory, pertinent to my present purpose, Genus humanum in parente primo, velut in radice putruit; Mankind was putrified in the root of his first parent; Matth. vii. 18. " A corrupt tree cannot u bring forth good fruit.”
2. This corrupt root spoils the fruit, by the transmission of its four and naughty fap into all the branches and fruits that grow on them; they fuck no other nourishment, but what the root affords them, and that being bad, spoils all: for the fame cause and reason, no mere natural or unregeneratę man can ever do one holy or acceptable action, because the corruption of the mot is in all those actions. The necessity of our drawing corruption into all our actions, from this cursed root Adam, is expressed by a quick and smart interrogation, Job xiv. 4. " can bring a clean thing out of an unclean ? Not one." The sense of it is well delivered us (by Mr. Caryl in loc.) This question (faith he) may undergo a twofold construction: First, thus, Who can bring a morally clean perfon out of a per. son originally unclean ? and so he lays his hand upon his birthfin. Or, secondly, which speaks to my purpose, it may refer to the action of the fame man; man being unclean, can. not bring forth a clean thing; (i. e.) a clean or holy action; that which is originated is like its original. And that this lour fap of the first stock (I mean Adam's fin) is transmitted into all mankind, not only corrupting their fruit, but ruining and withering all the branches, the
apostle fhews us in that excellent parallel betwixt the two Adams, Rom. v. 12. " Wherefore, as by one man” (one, not only in individuo fed in specie, one representing the whole root or stock,] “ sin entere « ed into the world.” not by imitation only, but by propagation; and this brought death and ruin upon all the branches.
3. Although these wild hedge-fruits be unwholsome and unpleasant to the taste, yet they are fair and beautiful to the eye ; a man that looks upon them, and doth not know what fruit it is, would judge it by its fhew and colour, to be excellent fruit; for it makes a fairer Thew oftentimes than the best and moft wholesome fruit doth : even so, these natural gifts and endowments which some unregenerate persons have, feem exceeding fair to the eye, and a fruit to be desired. What excellent