University of Virginia Library

A Proem unto Christ the Judge of the World.

O dearest dread, most glorious King,
I'le of thy justice Judgment sing:
Do thou my head and heart inspire
To do't aright, as I desire.
Thee, thee alone I'le invocate:
For I do much abominate
To call the Muses to mine aid:
Which is the unchristian use, and trade
Of some that Christians would be thought,
And yet they Worship worse than naught.
Oh, what a deal of Blasphemy,
And Heathenish Impiety,
In Christian Poets may be found,
Where Heathen Gods with Praise are crown'd,
They make JEHOVAH to stand by,
Till Juno, Venus, Mercury,
With frowning Mars, and thund'ring Jove,
Rule Earth below, and Heav'n above.
But I have learn'd to pray to none,
Save unto God in Christ alone.
Nor will I laud, no not in jest,
That which I know God doth detest.

I reckon it a damning evil,
To give Gods Praises to the Devil.
Thou, Christ, art he to whom I pray:
Thy glory fain I would display.
Oh, guide me by the sacred Sprite
So to indite, and so to write,
That I thine holy Name may praise,
And teach the sons of men thy ways.




Still was the night, serene and bright,
when all men sleeping lay;
Calm was the season, & carnal reason
thought so 'twould last for ay.
Soul take thine ease, let sorrow cease,
much good thou hast in store;
This was their song their cups among
the evening before.


Wallowing in all kind of sin,
vile wretches lay secure,
The best of men had scarcely then
their Lamps kept in good ure.
Virgins unwise, who through disguise
amongst the best were number'd,
Had clos'd their eyes; yea, and the Wise
through sloth and frailty slumber'd.



Like as of old, when men grew bold
Gods threatnings to contemn,
(Who stopt their ear, and would not hear
when mercy warned them?
But took their course, without remorse,
till God began to pour
Destruction the world upon,
in a tempestuous showr


They put away the evil day
and drown'd their cares and fears,
Till drown'd were they, and swept away
by vengeance unawares:
So at the last, whilest men sleep fast
in their security,
Surpriz'd they are in such a snare
as cometh suddenly.


For at midnight broke forth a light,
which turn'd the night to day:
And speedily an hideous cry
did all the world dismay.
Sinners awake, their hearts do ake,
trembling their loyns surprizeth;
Amaz'd with fear, by what they hear,
each one of them ariseth.


They rush from beds with giddy heads,
and to their windows run,


Viewing this Light, which shines more bright
than doth the noon-day Sun.
Straightway appears (they see't with tears)
the Son of God most dread,
Who with his train comes on amain
to judge both Quick and Dead.


Before his face the Heavens give place,
and Skies are rent asunder,
With mighty voice and hideous noise,
more terrible then Thunder.
His brightness damps Heav'ns glorious lamps,
and makes them hide their heads:
As if afraid, and quite dismaid,
they quit their wonted steads.


Ye sons of men that durst contemn
the threatnings of Gods word,
How cheer you now? your hearts (I trow)
are thrill'd as with a sword.
Now Atheist blind, whose brutish mind
a God could never see,
Dost thou perceive, dost now believe
that Christ thy Judge shall be?


Stout courages (whose hardiness
could death and hell out-face)
Are you as bold now you behold
your Judge draw near apace?


They cry, No, no: alas and wo?
our courage all is gone:
Our hardiness, (fool-hardiness)
hath us undone, undone.


No heart so bold but now grows cold,
and almost dead with fear:
No eye so dry but now can cry,
and pour out many a tear.
Earths Potentates and pow'rful States,
Captains and men of Might
Are quite abasht, their courage dasht.
At this most dreadful sight.


Mean men lament, great men do rent
their robes and tear their hair:
They do not spare their flesh to tear
through horrible despair.
All kindreds wail, their hearts do fail:
horrour the world doth fill
With weeping eyes, and loud out-cries,
yet knows not how to kill.


Some hide themselves in Caves and Delves,
and places under ground:
Some rashly leap into the deep,
to 'scape by being drown'd:
Some to the Rocks, (O sensless blocks)
and woody Mountains run,
That there they might this fearful fight
and dreaded Presence shun.



In vain do they to Mountains say,
Fall on us, and us hide
From Judges ire, more hot then fire,
For who may it abide?
No hiding place can from his face
sinners at all conceal,
Whose flaming eye hid things doth spy,
and darkest things reveal.


The Judge draws nigh, exalted high
upon a lofty Throne,
Amids the throng of Angels strong,
LIKE Israel's holy One.
The excellence of whose Presence,
and awful Majesty,
Amazeth Nature, and every Creature
doth more then terrifie.


The Mountains smoak, the Hills are shook,
the Earth is rent and torn,
As if she should be clean dissolv'd,
or from her Centre born.
The Sea doth roar, forsakes the shore,
and shrinks away for fear:
The wild beasts flee into the Sea
so soon as he draws near.


Whose glory bright, whose wondrous might,
whose Power Imperial,


So far surpass what ever was
in Realms Terrestrial;
That tongues of men (nor Angels pen)
cannot the same express:
And therefore I must pass it by,
lest speaking should transgress.


Before his throne a Trump is blown,
proclaiming th'day of Doom:
Forthwith he cries, Ye dead arise,
and unto Judgement come.
No sooner said, but 'tis obey'd;
Sepulchres open'd are;
Dead bodies all rise at his call,
and's mighty power declare.


Both sea and land at his command,
their dead at once surrender:
The fire and air constrained are
also their dead to tender.
The mighty word of this great Lord
links body and soul together,
Both of the just and the unjust,
to part no more for ever.


The same translates from mortal states
to immortality,
All that survive, and be alive,
i'th' twinkling of an eye.


That so they may abide for ay
to endless weal or woe;
Both the Renate and Reprobate
are made to dye no moe.


His winged Hosts fly through all Coasts,
together gathering
Both good and bad, both quick and dead,
and all to Judgement bring.
Out of their holes these creeping Moles,
that hid themselves for fear,
By force they take, and quickly make
before the Judge appear.


Thus every one before the Throne
of Christ the Judge is brought,
Both righteous and impious,
that good or ill had wrought.
A separation, and diff'ring station
by Christ appointed is
To sinners sad ('twixt good and bad,)
'twixt Heirs of woe, and bliss.


At Christ's right hand the sheep do stand,
his Holy Martyrs who
For his dear Name, suffering shame,
calamity, and woe,
Like Champions stood, and with their blood
their Testimony sealed;
Whose innocence, without offence
to Christ their Judge appealed.



Next unto whom there find a room,
all Christs afflicted ones,
Who being chastis'd, neither despis'd,
nor sank amidsts their groans:
Who by the Rod were turn'd to God,
and loved him the more,
Nor murmuring nor quarrelling
when they were chast'ned sore.


Moreover such as loved much,
that had not such a trial,
As might constrain to so great pain,
and such deep self-denial;
Yet ready were the Cross to bear,
when Christ them call'd thereto,
And did rejoyce to hear his voice,
they'r counted Sheep also.


Christ's flock of Lambs there also stands,
whose Faith was weak, yet true;
All sound Believers (Gospel-receivers)
whose grace was small, but grew.
And them among an infant throng
of Babes, for whom Christ dy'd;
Whom for his own, by ways unknown.
to men, he sanctify'd.


All stand before their Saviour
in long white Robes yclad,


Their countenance full of pleasance,
appearing wondrous glad.
O glorious sight I behold how bright
dust heaps are made to shine,
Conformed so their Lord unto,
whose glory is divine.


At Christs left hand the Goats do stand,
all whining Hypocrites,
Who for self-ends did seem Christ's friends,
but fost'red guileful sprites:
Who Sheep resembled, but they dissembled
(their heart was not sincere)
Who once did throng Christ's Lambs among;
but now must not come near.


Apostata's, and Run-away's,
such as have Christ forsaken,
(Of whom the the Devil, with seven more evil,
hath fresh possession taken:
Sinners in grain, reserv'd to pain
and torments most severe)
Because 'gainst light they sinn'd with spight,
are also placed there.


There also stand a num'rous band,
that no profession made
Of Godliness, nor to redress
their wayes at all assay'd:
Who better knew, but (sinful Crew!)
Gospel and Law despised;


Who all Christ's knocks withstood like blocks,
and would not be advised.


Moreover there with them appear
a number numberless
Of great and small, vile wretches all,
that did Gods Law transgress:
Idolaters, false Worshippers,
Prophaners of Gods Name,
Who not at all thereon did call,
or took in vain the same.


Blasphemers lewd, and Swearers shrewd,
Scoffers at Purity,
That hated God, contemn'd his Rod,
and lov'd security.
Sabbath-polluters, Saints Persecuters,
Presumptuous men, and Proud,
Who never lov'd those that reprov'd;
all stand amongst this crowd.


Adulterers and Whore mongers
were there, with all unchast.
There Covetous, and Ravenous,
that Riches got too fast:
Who us'd vile ways themselves to raise
t'Estates and worldly wealth,
Oppression by, or Knavery,
by Force, or Fraud, or Stealth.



Moreover, there together were
Children flagitious,
And Parents who did them undo
by nature vicious.
False-witness-bearers, and self-forswearers,
Murd'rers and men of blood,
Witches, Inchanters, and Alehouse-haunters,
beyond account there stood.


Their place there find all Heathen blind,
that Natures light abused,
Although they had no tidings glad
of Gospel-grace refused.
There stand all Nations and Generations
of Adam's Progeny,
Whom Christ redeem'd not, who Christ esteem'd not
throught infidelity.


Who no Peace-maker, no Undertaker
to shrowd them from God's ire
Ever obtained; they must be pained
with everlasting fire.
These num'rous bands, wringing their hands,
and weeping, all stand there,
Filled with anguish, whose hearts do languish
through self-tormenting fear.


Fast by them stand at Christ's left hand
the Lion fierce and fell,


The Dragon bold, that Serpent old
that hurried Souls to Hell.
There also stand, under command,
Legions of Sprights unclean.
And hellish Fiends that are no friends
to God, nor unto men.


With dismal chains and strong reins,
like prisoners of Hell,
They'r held in place before Christ's face,
till he their Doom shall tell.
These void of tears, but fill'd with fears,
and dreadful expectation
Of endless pains, and scalding flames,
stand waiting for Damnation.


All silence kept, both Goats and Sheep,
before the Judges Throne:
With mild aspect to his Elect
then spake the Holy One:
My Sheep draw near, your sentence hear,
which is to you no dread,
Who clearly now discern, and know
your sins are pardoned.


'Twas meet that ye should judged be,
that so the world may 'spy
No cause of grudge, when as I judge
and deal impartially.
Know therefore all both great and small,
the ground and reason why


These men do stand at my right hand,
and look so chearfully.


These men be those my Father chose
before the world's foundation,
And to me gave that I should save
from death and condemnation.
For whose dear sake I flesh did take,
was of a woman born,
And did inure my self t'endure
unjust reproach and scorn.


For them it was that I did pass
through sorrows many a one:
That I drank up that bitter Cup,
which made me sigh and groan.
The Cross his pain I did sustain;
yea more, my Fathers ire
I under-went, my bloud I spent
to save them from Hell fire.


Thus I esteem'd, thus I redeem'd
all these from every Nation,
That they might be (as now you see)
a chosen Generation.
What if ere-while they were as vile
and bad as any be,
And yet from all their guilt and thrall
at once I set them free?



My grace to one is wrong to none:
none can Election claim.
Amongst all those their souls that lose,
none can Rejection blame.
He that may chuse, or else refuse,
all men to save or spill,
May this man chuse, and that refuse,
redeeming whom he will.


But as for those whom I have chose
Salvations heirs to be,
I underwent their punishment,
and therefore set them free.
I bore their grief, and their relief
by suffering procur'd,
That they of bliss and happiness
might firmly be assur'd.


And this my grace they did embrace,
believing on my name;
Which Faith was true, the fruits do shew
proceeding from the same.
Their Penitence, their Patience,
their Love, their Self-denial;
In suffering losses and bearing crosses,
when put upon the trial:


Their sin-forsaking, their cheerful taking
my yoke; their charitee


Unto the Saints in all their wants,
and in them unto me.
These things do clear, and make appear
their Faith to be unseigned:
And that a part in my desert
and purchase they have gained.


Their debts are paid, their peace is made,
their sins remitted are;
Therefore at once I do pronounce
and openly declare,
That Heaven is theirs, that they be Heirs
of Life and of Salvation;
Nor ever shall they come at all
to death or to damnation.


Come, blessed ones, and sit on Thrones,
judging the world with me:
Come, and possess your happiness,
and bought felicitee.
Henceforth no fears, no care, no tears,
no sin shal you annoy,
Nor any thing that grief doth bring;
eternal rest enjoy.


You bore the Cross, you suffered loss
of all for my Names sake:
Receive the Crown that's now your own;
come, and a kingdom take.
Thus spake the Judge: the wicked grudge,
and grind their teeth in vain;


They see with groans these plac'd on thrones
which addeth to their pain:


That those whom they did wrong and slay,
must now their judgement see!
Such whom they sleighted and once despighted
must of their Judges be!
Thus 'tis decreed, such is their meed
and guerdon glorious:
With Christ they sit, judging it fit
to plague the impious.


The wicked are brought to the Bar
like guilty malefactors,
That oftentimes of bloody crimes
and treasons have been actors.
Of wicked men none are so mean
as there to be neglected:
Nor none so high in dignity
as there to be respected.


The glorious Judge will priviledge
nor Emperour nor King:
But every one that hath misdone
doth into judgement bring;
And every one that hath misdone,
the Judge impartially
Condemneth to eternal wo,
and endless misery.



Thus one and all, thus great and small,
the rich as well as poor,
And those of place, as the most base,
do stand their Judge before:
They are arraign'd, and there detain'd
before Christ's judgement seat
With trembling fear their Doom to hear,
and feel his angers heat.


There Christ demands at all their hands
a strict and straight account
Of all things done under the Sun;
whose numbers far surmount
Man's wit and thought: yet all are brought
unto this solemn trial;
And each offence with evidence,
so that there's no denial.


There's no excuses for their abuses,
since their own consciences
More proof give in of each man's sin;
then thousand witnesses.
Though formerly this faculty
had grosly been abused,
(Men could it stifle, or with it trifle,
whenas it them accused.)


Now it comes in, and every sin
unto mans charge doth lay:


It judgeth them, and doth condemn,
though all the world say nay.
It so stingeth and tortureth,
it worketh such distress,
That each mans self against himself
is forced to confess.


It's vain, moreover, for men to cover
the least iniquity;
The Judge hath seen and privy been
to all their villany.
He unto light and open sight
the works of darkness brings:
He doth unfold both new and old,
both known and hidden things.


All filthy facts and secret acts,
however closely done
And long conceal'd, are there reveal'd.
before the mid-day Sun.
Deeds of the night shunning the light,
which darkest corners sought,
To fearful blame and endless shame,
are there most justly brought.


And as all facts and grosser acts,
so every word and thought;
Erroneous notion and lustful motion,
are into judgement brought.
No sin so small and trivial,
but hither it must come:


Nor so long past, but now at last
it must receive a doom.


At this sad season Christ asks a reason
(with just austerity)
Of Grace refus'd, of Light abus'd
so oft, so wilfully:
Of Talents lent, by them-mispent,
and on their lusts bestown;
Which if improv'd as it behoov'd,
Heaven might have been their own.


Of time neglected, of meanes rejected,
of God's long-suffering,
And patience, to penitence
that sought hard hearts to bring.
Why cords of love did nothing move
to shame or to remorse?
Why warnings grave, and councels have
nought chang'd their sinful course?


Why chastenings and evil things,
why judgments so severe
Prevailed not with them a jot,
nor wrought an awful fear?
Why promises of holiness,
and new obedience,
They oft did make, but always break
the same to Gods offence?



Why, still Hell-ward, without regard,
they boldly ventured,
And chose Damnation before Salvation
when it was offered?
Why sinful pleasures and earthly treasures,
like fools they prized more
Then heavenly wealth, eternal health,
and all Christs Royal store?


Why, when he stood off'ring his Bloud
to wash them from their sin,
They would embrace no saving Grace,
but liv'd and di'd therein?
Such aggravations, where no evasions
nor false pretences hold,
Exagerate and cumulate
guilt more then can be told:


They multiply and magnifie
mens gross iniquities;
They draw down wrath (as Scripture saith)
out of God's treasuries.
Thus all their ways Christ open lays
to Men and Angels view,
And, as they were, makes them appear
in their own properhue.


Thus he doth find of all mankind
that stand at his left hand


No mothers son but hath misdone,
and broken God's command.
All have transgrest, even the best,
and merited God's wrath
Unto their own perdition,
and everlasting scath.


Earth's dwellers all both great and small,
have wrought iniquity,
And suffer must (for it is just)
eternal misery.
Amongst the many there come not any
before the Judge's face,
That able are themselves to clear,
of all this curled race.


Nevertheless they all express,
Christ granting liberty,
What for their way they have to say,
how they have liv'd, and why.
They all draw near, and seek to clear
themselves by making plea's.
There hypocrites, false-hearted wights,
do make such pleas as these.


Lord, in thy Name, and by the same
we Devils dispossest:
We rais'd the dead, and ministred
succour to the distrest.


Our painful preaching and pow'rful teaching,
by thine own wond'rous might,
Did throughly win from God to sin
many a wretched wight.


All this (quoth he) may granted be,
and your case little better'd,
Who still remain under a chain,
and many irons fetter'd.
You that the dead have quickened,
and rescu'd from the grave,
Your selves were dead, yet never ned
a Christ your Souls to save.


You that could preach, and others teach
what way to life doth lead;
Why were you slack to find that track,
and in that way to tread?
How could you bear to see or hear
of others freed at last
From Satans Paws, whilst in his jaws
your selves were held more fast?


Who though you knew Repentance true
and faith in my great Name,
The only mean to quit you clean
from punishment and blame,
Yet took no pain true faith to gain,
(such as might not deceive)
Nor would repent with true intent
your evil deeds to leave.



His Masters will how to fulfil
the servant that well knew,
Yet left undone his duty known,
more plagues to him are due.
You against Light perverted Right;
wherefore it shall be now
For Sidon and for Sodom's Land
more easie then for you.


But we have in thy presence bin,
say some, and eaten there.
Did we not eat thy flesh for meat,
and feed on heavenly cheer?
Whereon who feed shall never need,
as thou thy self dost say,
Nor shall they die eternally,
but live with thee for ay.


We may alledge, thou gav'st a pledge
of thy dear love to us
In Wine and Bread, which figured
thy grace bestowed thus.
Of strengthning seals, of sweetest meals
have we so oft partaken?
And shall we be cast off by thee,
and utterly forsaken?


To whom the Lord thus in a word
returns a short reply:


I never knew any of you
that wrought iniquity.
You say y' have bin, my Presence in;
but, friends, how came you there
With Raiment vile, that did defile
and quite disgrace my cheer?


Durst you draw near without due fear
unto my holy Table?
Durst you prophane and render vain
so far as you were able,
Those Mysteries? which whoso prize
and carefully improve,
Shall saved be undoubtedly,
and nothing shall them move.


How durst you venture, bold guests, to enter
in such a sordid hue,
Amongst my guests, unto those feasts
that were not made for you?
How durst you eat for spir'tual meat
your bane, and drink damnation,
Whilst by your guile you rendred vile
so rare and great salvation?


Your fancies fed on heav'nly bread;
your hearts fed on some lust:
You lov'd the Creature more then th'Creator
your soules clave to the dust.
And think you by hypocrisie
and cloaked wickedness,


To enter in, laden with sin,
to lasting happiness.


This your excuse shews your abuse
of things ordain'd for good;
And do declare you guilty are
of my dear Flesh and Bloud.
Wherefore those Seals and precious Meals
you put so much upon
As things divine, they seal and sign
you to perdition.


Then forth issue another Crew,
(those being silenced)
Who drawing nigh to the most High
adventure thus to plead:
We sinners were, say they, 'tis clear,
deserving Condemnation:
But did not we rely on thee,
O Christ, for whole Salvation?


We did believe, and of receive
thy gracious Promises:
We took great care to get a share
in endless happiness:
We pray'd and wept, we Fast-days kept,
lewd ways we did eschew:
We joyful were thy Word to hear,
we form'd our lives anew.



We thought our sin had pardon'd bin,
that our estate was good,
Our debts all paid, our peace well made,
our Souls washt with thy Bloud.
Lord, why dost thou reject us now,
who have not thee rejected,
Nor utterly true sanctity
and holy life neglected?


The Judge incensed at their pretenced
self-vaunting piety,
With such a look as trembling strook
into them, made reply;
O impudent, impenitent,
and guileful generation!
Think you that I cannot descry
your hearts abomination?


You not receiv'd, nor yet believ'd
my promises of grace;
Nor were you wise enough to prize
my reconciled face:
But did presume, that to assume
which was not yours to take,
And challenged the childrens bread,
yet would not sin forsake.


Being too bold you laid fast hold
where int'rest you had none,


Your selves deceiving by your believing;
all which you might have known.
You ran away (but ran astray)
with Gospel promises,
And perished, being still dead
in sins and trespasses.


How oft did I hypocrisie
and hearts deceits unmask
Before your sight, giving you light
to know a Christians task?
But you held fast unto the last
your own conceits so vain:
No warning could prevail, you would
your own deceits retain.


As for your care to get a share
in bliss, the fear of Hell,
And of a part in endless smart,
did thereunto compel.
Your holiness and ways redress,
such as it was, did spring
From no true love to things above,
but from some other thing.


You pray'd and wept, you Fast-days kept,
but did you this to me?
No, but for sin you sought to win
the greater libertee.
For all your vaunts, you had vile haunt's;
for which your consciences


Did you alarm, whose voice to charm
you us'd these practises.


Your penitence, your diligence
to read, to pray, to hear,
Were but to drown the clam'rous sound
of conscience in your ear.
If light you lov'd, vain-glory mov'd
your selves therewith to store,
That seeming wise, men might you prize,
and honour you the more.


Thus from your selves unto your selves
your duties all do tend:
And as self-love the wheels do move,
so in self-love they end.
Thus Christ detects their vain projects,
and close impiety,
And plainly shews that all their shows
were but hypocrisie.


Then were brought nigh a company
of civil honest men,
That lov'd true dealing, and hated stealing,
ne wrong'd their brethren:
Who pleaded thus, Thou knowest us
that we were blameless livers;
No whore-mongers, no murderers,
no quarrellers nor strivers.



Idolaters, Adulterers,
Church-robbers we were none;
Nor false dealers, nor couzeners,
but paid each man his own.
Our way was fair, our dealing square,
we were no wastful spenders,
No lewd toss-pots, no drunken sots,
no scandalous offenders.


We hated vice, and set great price
by vertuous conversation:
And by the same we got a name,
and no small commendation.
God's Laws express that righteousness
is that which he doth prize;
And to obey, as he doth say,
is more then sacrifice.


Thus to obey, hath been our way;
let our good deeds, we pray,
Find some regard, and good reward
with thee, O Lord, this day.
And whereas we transgressors be;
of Adam's Race were none,
(No not the best) but have confess
themselves to have misdone.


Then answered, unto their dread,
the Judge, True piety


God doth desire, and eke require
no less then honesty.
Justice demands at all your hands
perfect Obedience:
If but in part you have come short,
that is a just offence.


On earth below where men did owe
a thousand pounds and more,
Could twenty pence it recompence?
could that have clear'd the score?
Think you to buy felicity
with part of what's due debt?
Or for desert of one small part
the whole should off be set?


And yet that part (whose great desert
you think to reach so far
For your excuse) doth you accuse,
and will your boasting mar.
However fair, however square
your way, and work hath bin
Before mens eyes, yet God espies
iniquity therein.


God looks upon th'affection
and temper of the heart;
Not only on the action,
and the external part.
Whatever end vain men pretend,
God knows the verify:


And by the end which they intend
their words and deeds doth try.


Without true faith, the Scripture saith,
God cannot take delight
In any deed, that doth proceed
from any sinful wight.
And without love all actions prove
but barren empty things:
Dead works they be, and vanity,
the which vexation brings.


Nor from true faith, which quencheth wrath
hath your obedience flown:
Nor from true love, which wont to move
believers, hath it grown.
Your argument shews your intent
in all that you have done:
You thought to scale heavens lofty wall,
by ladders of your own.


Your blinded spirit, hoping to merit
by your own righteousness,
Needed no Saviour, but your behaviour
and blameless carriages.
You trusted to what you could do,
and in no need you stood:
Your haughty pride laid me aside,
and trampled on my Bloud.



All men have gone astray, and done
that which God's Laws condemn:
But my Purchase and offered Grace
all men did not contemn.
The Ninevites and Sodomites
had no such sin as this:
Yet as if all your sins were small,
you say, All did amiss.


Again, you thought, and mainly sought
a name with men t'acquire:
Pride bare the Bell that made you swell,
and your own selves admire.
Mean fruit it is, and vile, I wis,
that springs from such a root:
Vertue divine and genuine
wants not from pride to shoot.


Such deeds as you are worse then poor,
they are but sins guilt over
With silver dross, whose glistering gloss
can them no longer cover.
The best of them would you condemn,
and ruine you alone,
Although you were from faults so clear,
that other you had none.


Your gold is dross, your silver brass,
your righteousness is sin:


And think you by such honesty
Eternall life to win?
You much mistake, if for it's sake
you dream of acceptation;
Whereas the same deserveth shame,
and meriteth damnation.


A wond'rous Crowd then 'gan aloud
thus for themselves to say;
We did intend, Lord to mend,
and to reform our way:
Our true intent was to repent,
and make our peace with thee;
But sudden death stopping our breath,
left us no libertee.


Short was our time; for in his prime
our youthful flow'r was cropt:
We dy'd in youth, before full growth;
so was our purpose stopt.
Let our good will to turne from ill,
and sin to have forsaken,
Accepted be O Lord, by thee,
and in good part be taken.


To whom the Judg; Where you alledge
the shortness of the space
That from your birth you liv'd on earth,
to compass Saving Grace:
It was free-grace, that any space
was given you at all


To turn from evil, defie the Devil,
and upon God to call.


One day, one week, wherein to seek
Gods face with all your hearts,
A favour was that far did pass
the best of your deserts.
You had a season; what was your Reason
such precious hours to waste?
What could you find, what could you mind
that was of greater haste?


Could you find time for vain pastime?
for loose licentious mirth?
For fruitless toys, and fading joyes
that perish in the birth?
Had you good leisure for Carnal pleasure
in days of health and youth?
And yet no space to seek Gods face,
and turn to him in truth?


In younger years, beyond your fears,
what if you were surprised?
You put away the evil day,
and of long life devised.
You oft were told, and might behold,
that Death no age would spare.
Why then did you your time foreslow,
and slight your Souls welfare?



Had your intent been to Repent,
and had you it desir'd,
There would have been endeavours seen
before your time expir'd.
God makes no treasure nor hath he pleasure
in idle purposes:
Such fair pretences are foul offences,
and cloaks for wickedness.


Then were brought in and charg'd with sin
another Company,
Who by Petition obtain'd permission
to make apology:
They argued; We were mis-led,
as is well known to thee,
By their Example, that had more ample
abilities than we.


Such as profest we did detest
and hate each wicked way:
Whose seeming grace whil'st we did trace,
our Souls were led astray.
When men of Parts, Learning and Arts,
professing Piety,
Did thus and thus, it seem'd to us
we might take liberty.


The Judge Replies; I gave you eyes,
and light to see your way:


Which had you lov'd and well improv'd
you had not gone astray.
My Word was pure, the Rule was sure;
why did you it forsake,
Or thereon trample, and men's Example
your Directory make?


This you well know, that God is true,
and that most men are liars,
In word professing holiness,
in deed thereof deniers.
O simple fools! that having Rules
your lives to Regulate,
Would them refuse, and rather chuse
vile men to imitate.


But Lord, say they, we went astray,
and did more wickedly,
By means of those whom thou hast chose
Salvations Heirs to be.
To whom the Judge; What you alledge
doth nothing help the case,
But makes appear how vile you were,
and rend'reth you more bale.


You understood that what was good
was to be followed,
And that you ought that which was nought
to have relinquished.
Contrariwise, it was your guise,
only to imitate


Good mens defects, and their neglects
that were Regenerate.


But to express their holiness,
or imitate their Grace,
Yet little car'd, not once prepar'd
your hearts to seek my face.
They did Repent, and truly Rent
their hearts for all known sin:
You did Offend, but not Amend,
to follow them therein.


We had thy Word, (said some) O Lord,
but wiser men then wee
Could never yet interpret it,
but always disagree.
How could we fools be led by Rules
so far beyond our ken,
Which to explain, did so much pain
and puzzle wisest men?


Was all my Word obscure and hard?
the Judge then answered:
It did contain much Truth so plain,
you might have run and read.
But what was hard you never car'd
to know, nor studied:
And things that were most plain and clear,
you never practised.



The Mystery of Piety
God unto Babes reveals;
When to the wise he it denies,
and from the world conceals.
If to fulfill Gods holy will
had seemed good to you,
You would have sought light as you ought,
and done the good you knew.


Then came in view another Crew,
and 'gan to make their plea's;
Amongst the rest, some of the best
had such poor shifts as these:
Thou know'st right well, who all canst tell,
we liv'd amongst thy foes,
Who the Renate did sorely hate,
and goodness much oppose.


We Holiness durst not profess,
fearing to be forlorn
Of all our friends, and for amends
to be the wicked's scorn.
We knew their anger would much endanger
our lives and our estates:
Therefore for fear we durst appear
no better than our mates.


To whom the Lord returns this word;
O wonderful deceits!


To cast off aw of Gods strict Law,
and fear mens wrath and threats!
To fear Hell-fire and Gods fierce ire
less then the rage of men!
As if Gods wrath could do less scath
than wrath of bretheren!


To use such strife to temp'ral life
to rescue and secure!
And be so blind as not to mind
that life that will endure!
This was your case, who carnal peace
more then true joyes did savour:
Who fed on dust, clave to your lust,
and spurned at my favour.


To please your kin, mens loves to win,
to flow in worldly wealth,
To save your skin, these things have bin
more than Eternal health.
You had your choice, wherein rejoyce,
it was your portion,
For which you chose your Souls t'expose
unto Perdition.


Who did not hate friends, life, and state,
with all things else for me,
And all forsake, and's Cross up take,
shall never happy be.
Well worthy they do die for ay,
who death then life had rather:


Death is their due that so value
the friendship of my Father.


Others argue, and not a few,
is not God gracious?
His Equity and Clemency
are they not marvellous?
Thus we believ'd; are we deceiv'd?
cannot his Mercy great,
(As hath been told to us of old)
asswage his anger's heat?


How can it be that God should see
his Creatures endless pain?
Or hear their groans or ruefull moanes,
and still his wrath retain?
Can it agree with equitee?
can Mercy have the heart,
To Recompence few years offence
with Everlasting smart?


Can God delight in such a sight
as sinners Misery?
Or what great good can this our bloud
bring unto the most High?
Oh thou that dost thy Glory most
in pard'ning sin display!
Lord! might it please thee to release,
and pardon us this day?



Unto thy Name more glorious fame
would not such Mercy bring?
Would it not raise thine endless praise,
more than our suffering?
With that they cease, holding their peace,
but cease not still to weep;
Griefe ministers a flood to tears,
in which their words do steep:


But all too late; Grief's out of date
when Life is at an end.
The glorious King thus answering,
all to his voice attend:
God gracious is, quoth he, like his
no Mercy can be found;
His Equity and Clemency
to sinners do abound.


As may appear by those that here
are plac'd at my right hand;
Whose stripes I bore and clear'd the score
that they might quitted stand.
For surely none but God alone;
whose Grace transcends man's thought,
For such as those that were his foes
like wonders would have wrought.


And none but he such lenitee
and patience would have shown


To you so long, who did him wrong,
and pull'd his judgements down.
How long a space (O stiff-neck't Race!)
did patience you afford?
How oft did love you gently move
to turn unto the Lord?


With cords of Love God often strove
your stubborn hearts to tame:
Nevertheless, your wickedness
did still resist the same.
If now at last Mercy be past
from you for evermore,
And Justice come in Mercies room,
yet grudge you nor therefore.


If into wrath God turned hath
his Long-long suffering,
And now for Love you Vengeance prove,
it is an equal thing.
Your waxing worse, hath stopt the course
of wonted Clemency:
Mercy refus'd, and Grace misus'd,
call for severity.


It's now high time that every Crime
be brought to punishment:
VVrath long contain'd, and oft refrain'd,
at last must have a vent.
Justice severe cannot forbear
to plague sin any longer;


But must inflict with hand most strict
mischief upon the wronger.


In vain do they for Mercy pray,
the season being past,
Who had no care to get a share
therein, while time did last.
The men whose ear refus'd to hear
the voice of Wisdom's cry,
Earn'd this reward, that none regard
him in his misery.


It doth agree with Equitee,
and with God's holy Law,
That those should dy eternally,
that death upon them draw.
The Soul that sin's damnation win's;
for so the Law ordains:
Which Law is just; and therefore must
such suffer endless pains.


Eternal smart is the desert
ev'n of the least offence;
Then wonder not if I allot
to you this Recompence:
But wonder more that, since so sore
and lasting plagues are due
To every sin, you liv'd therein,
who well the danger knew.



God hath no joy to crush or 'stroy,
and ruine wretched wights:
But to display the glorious ray
of Justice he delights.
To manifest he doth detest
and throughly hate all sin,
By plaguing it, as is most fit,
this shall him glory win.


Then at the Bar arraigned are
an impudenter sort,
Who to evade the guilt that's laid
upon them, thus retort;
How could we cease thus to transgress?
how could we Hell avoid,
Whom God's Decree shut out from thee,
and sign'd to be destroy'd?


Whom God ordains to endless pains
by Laws unalterable,
Repentance true, Obedience new,
to save such are unable:
Sorrow for sin no good can win
to such as are rejected;
Ne can they give, not yet believe
that never were elected.


Of man's fain Race who can true Grace
or Holiness obtain?


Who can convert or change his heart,
if God with-hold the same?
Had we apply'd our selves, and tri'd
as much as who did most
Gods love to gain, our busie pain
and labour had been lost.


Christ readily makes this reply;
I damn you not because
You are rejected, or not elected;
but you have broke my Laws.
It is but vain your wits to strain
the End and Means to sever:
Men fondly seek to dart or break
what God hath link'd together.


Whom God will save, such he will have
the means of life to use:
Whom he'l pass by, shall chuse to die,
and ways of life refuse.
He that fore-sees and fore-decrees,
in wisdom order'd has,
That man's free-will electing ill
shall bring his Will to pass.


High God's Decree, as it is free,
so doth it none compel
Against their will to good or ill;
it forceth none to Hell.
They have their wish whose Souls perish
with torments in Hell-fire:


Who rather chose their souls to lose,
then leave a loose desire.


God did ordain sinners to pain;
and I to hell send none,
But such as swerv'd, and have deserv'd
destruction as their own.
His pleasure is, that none from bliss
and endless happiness
Be barr'd, but such as wrong'd him much
by wilful wickedness.


You (sinful crew!) no other knew
but you might be elect:
Why did you then your selves condemn?
why did you me reject?
Where was your strife to gain that life
which lasteth evermore?
You never knock't, yet say God lock't
against you heavens door.


'Twas no vain task to knock, to ask,
whilst life continued.
Who ever sought Heav'n as he ought,
and seeking perished?
The lowly-meek who truly seek
for Christ and for salvation,
There's no Decree whereby such be
ordain'd to condemnation.



You argue then; But abject men,
whom God resolves to spill,
Cannot repent, nor their hearts rent;
ne can they change their will.
Not for his Can is any man
adjudged unto hell:
But for his Will to do what's ill,
and nilling to do well.


I often stood tend'ring my Bloud
to wash away your guilt:
And eke my Sprite to frame you right,
lest your souls should be spilt.
But you, vile race, rejected Grace
when Grace was freely proffer'd:
No changed heart, no heav'nly part
would you, when it was offer'd.


Who wilfully the remedy
of Grace and Life contemned,
Cause have the same themselves to blame,
if now they be condemned.
You have your selves, you and none else,
your selves have done to die:
You chose the way to your decay,
and perish'd wilfully.


These words apale and daunt them all;
dismai'd, and all amort,


Like stocks they stand at Christs left hand,
and dare no more retort.
Then were brought near, with trembling fear
a number numberless
Of blind Heathen and brutish men,
that did Gods Law transgress.


Whose wicked ways, Christ open lays,
and makes their sins appear,
They making plea's the case to ease,
if not themselves to clear.
Thy written word (say they) good Lord
we never did enjoy:
We not refus'd nor it abus'd,
Oh do not us destroy.


You ne'r abus'd nor yet refus'd
my written Word, you plead;
That's true, (quoth he) therefore shall ye
the less be punished.
You shall not smart for any part
of other mens offence,
But for your own transgression
receive due recompence.


But we were blind, say they, in mind;
too dim was natures light,
Our only guide (as hath been try'd)
to bring us to the sight
Of our estate degenerate,
and curst by Adam's fall;


How we were born and lay forlorn
in bondage and in thrall.


We did not know a Christ till now,
nor how faln man he saved:
Else should we not, right well we wot,
have so our selves behaved.
We should have mourn'd, we should have turn'd
from sin at thy reproof,
And been more wise through thine advice,
for our own Souls behoof.


But natures light shin'd not so bright
to teach us the right way:
We might have lov'd it, & well improv'd it,
and yet have gone astray.
The Judge most high makes this reply;
you ignorance pretend,
Dimness of sight, and want of light
your course Heav'n ward to bend:


How came your mind to be so blind?
I once you knowledge gave,
Clearness of sight, and judgement right;
who did the same deprave?
If to your cost you have it lost,
and quite defac'd the same;
Your own desert hath caus'd your smart,
you ought not me to blame.



Your selves into a pit of wo
your own transgressions led:
If I to none my grace had shown,
who had been injured?
If to a few, and not to you,
I shew'd a way of life,
My Grace so free, you clearly see,
gives you no ground of strife.


'Tis vain to tell, you wot full well,
if you in time had known
Your Misery and Remedy,
your actions had it shown.
You, sinful crew, have not been true
unto the light of Nature;
Not done the good you understood,
nor owned your Creator.


He that the Light, because 'tis Light,
hath used to despize,
Would not the Light, shining more bright,
be likely for to prize.
If you had lov'd and well improv'd
your knowledge and dim sight,
Herein your pain had not been vain,
your plagues had been more light.


Then to the Bar all they drew near
who dy'd in infancy,


And never had or good or bad
effected pers'nally;
But from the womb unto the tomb
were straightway carried,
(Or at the least, ere they transgrest)
who thus began to plead.


If for our own transgression,
or disobedience,
We here did stand at thy left hand,
just were the recompence:
But Adam's guilt our souls hath spilt,
his fault is charg'd upon us;
And that alone hath overthrown,
and utterly undone us.


Not we, but he, ate of the Tree,
whose fruit was interdicted:
Yet on us all of his sad fall
the punishment's inflicted.
How could we sin who had not bin?
or how is his sin our
Without consent, which to prevent
we never had a pow'r?


O great Creator, why was our nature
depraved and forlorn?
Why so defil'd, and made so vild
Whilst we were yet unborn?
If it be just, and needs we must
transgressors reckon'd be,


Thy mercy, Lord, to us afford,
which sinners hath set free.


Behold, we see Adam set free,
and sav'd from his trespass,
Whose sinful fall hath split us all,
and brought us to this pass.
Canst thou deny us once to try,
or grace to us to tender,
When he finds grace before thy face,
that was the chief offender?


Then answered the Judge most dread;
God doth such doom forbid,
That men should die eternally
for what they never did.
But what you call old Adam's Fall,
and only his Trespass,
You call amiss to call it his:
both his and yours it was.


He was design'd of all mankind
to be a publick Head,
A common Root whence all should shoot,
and stood in all their stead:
He stood and fell, did ill or well,
not for himself alone,
But for you all, who now his Fall
and trespass would disown.



If he had stood, then all his brood
had been established
In Gods true love, never to move,
nor once awry to tread:
Then all his Race my Fathers Grace
should have enjoy'd for ever,
And wicked Sprights by subtil sleights
could them have harmed never.


Would you have griev'd to have receiv'd
through Adam so much good,
As had been your for evermore,
if he at first had stood?
Would you have said, We ne'r obey'd
nor did thy Laws regard;
It ill befits with benefits
us, Lord, so to reward?


Since then to share in his welfare
you could have been content,
You may with reason share in his treason,
and in the punishment.
Hence you were born in state forlorn,
with natures so depraved:
Death was your due, because that you
had thus your selves behaved.


You think if we had been as he,
whom God did so betrust,


We to our cost would ne'r have lost
all for a paltry lust.
Had you been made in Adam's stead,
you would like things have wrought;
And so into the self-same wo
your selves and yours have brought.


I may deny you once to try,
or Grace to you to tender,
Though he finds grace before my face
who was the chief offender:
Else should my Grace cease to be Grace,
for it should not be free,
If to release whom I shall please
I have not libertee.


If upon one what's due to none
I frankly shall bestow,
And on the rest shall not think best
compassions skirt to throw,
Whom injure I? will you envy,
and grudge at others weal?
Or me accuse, who do refuse
your selves to help and heal?


Am I alone of what's my own
no Master or no Lord?
Or if I am, how can you claim
what I to some afford?
Will you demand Grace at my hand,
and challenge what is mine?


Will you teach me whom to set free,
and thus my Grace confine?


You sinners are, and such a share
as sinners may expect,
Such you shall have, for I do save
none but mine own Elect.
Yet to compare your sin with their
who liv'd a longer time,
I do confess yours is much less,
though ev'ry sin's a crime:


A crime it is: therefore in bliss
you may not hope to dwell:
But unto you I shall allow
the easiest room in hell.
The glorious King thus answering,
they cease and plead no longer:
Their consciences must needs confess
his Reasons are the stronger.


Thus all mens plea's the Judge with ease
doth answer and confute,
Until that all both great and small,
are silenced and mute.
Vain hopes are cropt, all mouths are stopt,
sinners have nought to say,
But that 'tis just, and equal most
they should be damn'd for ay.



Now what remains, but that to pains
and everlasting smart
Christ should condemn the sons of men,
which is their just desert?
Oh rusul plights of sinful wights!
Oh wretches all forlorn!
That happy been they ne'r had seen
the Sun, or not been born.


Yea, now it would be good they could
themselves annihilate,
And cease to be, themselves to free
from such a fearful state.
Oh happy Dogs, and Swine, and Frogs!
yea, Serpents generation!
Who do not fear this doom to hear,
and sentence of Damnation!


This is their state so desperate:
their sins are fully known;
Their vanities and villanies
before the world are shown.
As they are gross and impious,
so are their numbers more
Then motes i'th' air, or then their hair,
or sands upon the shore.


Divine Justice offended is,
and Satisfaction claimeth:


Gods wrathful ire kindled like fire
against them fiercely flameth.
Their Judge severe doth quite cashire
and all their Pleas off take,
That never a man, or dare, or can
a further Answer make.


Their mouthes are shut, each man is put
to silence and to shame:
Nor have they ought within their thought
Christs Justice for to blame;
The Judge is just, and plague them must,
nor will he mercy shew
(For Mercy's day is past away)
to any of this Crew.


The Judge is strong; doers of wrong
cannot his Power withstand:
None can by flight run out of sight,
nor scape out of his hand.
Sad is their state; for Advocate
to plead their Cause there's none:
None to prevent their punishment,
or misery to bemone


O dismal day! whither shall they
for help or succour flee?
To God above, with hopes to move
their greatest Enemee?
His wrath is great, whose burning heat
no flood of Tears can slake:


His word stands fast, that they be cast
into the burning Lake.


To Christ their Judge? he doth adjudge
them to the Pit of Sorrow:
Nor will he hear or cry, or tear,
nor respite them on morrow.
To Heav'n? Alas they cannot pass,
it is against them shut:
To enter there (O heavy chear!)
they out of hopes are put.


Unto their Treasures, or to their Pleasures?
all these have been forsaken:
Had they full Coffers to make large offers,
their Gold would not be taken.
Unto the place where whilome was
their birth and education?
Lo! Christ begins for their great sins
to fire the Earths foundation:


And by and by the flaming Sky
shall drop like moulten Lead
About their ears, t'increase their fears
and aggravate their dread.
To Angels good that ever stood
in their integrity,
Should they betake themselves, and make
their suit incessantly?



They neither skill, nor do they will
to work them any ease:
They will not mourn to see them burn,
nor beg for their release.
To wicked men, their brethren
in sin and wickedness,
Should they make mone? their case is one;
they're in the same distress.


Ah, cold comfort, and mean support
from such like Comforters!
Ah, little joy of Company,
and fellow-sufferers!
Such shall increase their hearts disease,
and add unto their wo,
Because that they brought to decay
themselves and many moe.


Unto the Saints with sad complaints.
should they themselves apply?
They're not dejected nor ought affected
with all their misery.
Friends stand aloof, and make no proof
what Prayers or Tears can do:
Your godly friends are now more friends
to Christ then unto you.


Where tender love mens hearts did move
unto a sympathy,


And bearing part of others smart
in their anxiety;
Now such compassion is out of fashion,
and wholly laid aside:
No friend so near, but Saints to hear
their judgement can abide.


One natural Brother beholds another
in this astonied fit,
Yet sorrows not thereat a jot,
nor pities him a whit.
The godly wife conceives no grief,
nor can she shed a tear
For the sad state of her dear Mate,
when she his doom doth hear.


He that was erst a Husband pierc't
with sense of Wives distress,
Whose tender heart did bear a part
of all her grievances,
Shall mourn no more as heretofore
because of her ill plight;
Although he see her now to be
a damn'd forsaken wight.


The render Mother will own no other
of all her numerous brood,
But such as stand at Christs right hand
acquitted through his Blood.
The pious Father had now much rather
his graceless Son should lye


In Hell with Devils, for all his evils
burning eternally:


Then God most High should injury
by sparing him sustain;
And doth rejoyce to hear Christs voice
adjudging him to pain.
Who having all (both great and small)
convinc't and silenced,
Did then proceed their Doom to read,
and thus it uttered;


Ye sinful wights, and cursed sprights,
that work Iniquity,
Depart together from me for ever
to endless Misery.
Your portion take in that sad Lake
where Fire and Brimstone flameth:
Suffer the smart, which your desert
as its due wages claimeth.


Oh pierceing words more sharp then Swords!
what, to depart from Thee,
Whose face before for evermore
the best of Pleasures be!
What! to depart (unto our smart)
from thee Eternally!
To be for ay banish't away
with Devils company!



What! to be sent to Punishment,
and flames of Burning Fire!
To be surrounded, and eke confounded
with God's Revengeful Ire!
What to abide, not for a tide,
these Torments, but for Ever!
To be released, or to be eased,
not after years, but Never!


Oh, fearful Doom! now there's no room
for hope, or help at all:
Sentence is past which ay shall last,
Christ will not it recall.
There might you hear them rent and tear
the Air with their out-cries:
The hideous noise of their sad voice
ascendeth to the skies.


They wring their hands, their caitiff-hands,
and gnash their teeth for terrour:
They cry, they rore for anguish sore,
and gnaw their tongues for horrour.
But get away without delay;
Christ pities not your cry:
Depart to Hell, there may you yell
and roar Eternally.


That word Depart, maugre their heart;
drives every wicked one,


With mighty pow'r, the self-same hour
far from the Judges throne.
Away they're cast by the strong blast
of his Death-threatning mouth:
They flee full fast, as if in hast;
although they be full loath.


As chaff that's dry, and dust doth fly
before the Northern wind:
Right so are they chased away,
and can no Refuge find.
They hasten to the Pit of wo,
guarded by Angels stout:
Who to fulfil Christ's holy will
attend this wicked Rout.


Whom having brought, as they are taught
unto the brink of Hell
(That dismal place far from Christ's face,
where Death and Darkness dwell:
Where God's fierce ire kindleth the fire,
and Vengeance feeds the flame
With piles of wood, and brimstone flood,
that none can quench the same.)


With Iron bands they bind their hands
and cursed feet together,
And cast them all, both great and small,
into that Lake for ever.
Where day and night, without respite,
they wail, and cry, and howl


For tor'tring pain, which they sustain
in Body and in Soul.


For day and night, in their despight,
their torments smoak ascendeth:
Their pain and grief have no relief,
their anguish never endeth.
There must they lye, and never dye;
though dying every day;
There must they dying ever lye;
and not consume away.


Dye fain they would, if dye they coul
but death will not be had.
Gods direful wrath their bodies hath
for ev'r Immortal made.
They live to lie in misery.
and bear eternal wo:
And live they must whil'st God is just,
that he may plague them so.


But who can tell the plagues of Hell,
and torments exquisite?
Who can relate their dismal state,
and terrours infinite?
Who fare the best, and feel the least,
yet feel that Punishment
Whereby to nought they should be brought,
if God did not prevent.



The least degree of misery
there felt's incomparable,
The lightest pain they there sustain
more then intollerable.
But Gods great pow'r from hour to hour
upholds them in the fire,
That they shall not consume a jot,
nor by its force expire.


But ah, the wo they undergo
(they more then all beside)
Who had the light, and knew the right,
yet would not it abide!
The sev'n-fold smart, which to their part
and portion doth fall,
Who Christ his Grace would not embrace,
nor hearken to his call!


The Amorites and Sodomites,
although their plagues be sore,
Yet find some ease, compar'd to these,
who feel a great deal more.
Almighty God, whose Iron Rod
to smite them never lius,
Doth most declare his justice rare
in plaguing these mens sins.


The pain of loss their sculs doth toss
and wond'rously distress,


To think what they have cast away
by wilful wickedness.
We might have been redeem'd from sin,
think they, and liv'd above,
Being possest of heav'nly rest,
and joying in Gods love.


But wo, wo, wo our souls unto!
we would not happy be;
And therefore bear Gods vengeance here
to all Eternitee.
Experience and woful sence
must be our painful teachers,
Who n' ould believe, nor credit give
unto our faithful Preachers.


Thus shall they lie, and wail, and cry,
tormented, and tormenting
Their galled hearts with poyson'd darts;
but now too late repenting.
There let them dwell i'th' flames of hell,
there leave we them to burn,
And back agen unto the men
whom Christ acquits return.


The Saints behold with courage bold,
and thankful wonderment,
To see all those that were their foes
thus sent to punishment:
Then do they sing unto their King
a song of endless praise:


They praise his Name, and do proclaim,
that just are all his ways.


Thus with great joy and melody
to Heav'n they all ascend,
Him there to praise with sweetest layes,
And Hymns that never end.
Where with long Rest they shall be blest,
and nought shall them annoy:
Where they shall see as seen they be,
and whom they love, enjoy.


O glorious Place! where face to face
Jehovah may be seen,
By such as were sinners whilere,
and no dark vail between.
Where the Sun-shine, and Light divine,
of Gods bright Countenance
Doth rest upon them every one
with sweetest influence.


O blessed state of the Renate!
O Wond'rous Happiness
To which they'r brought, beyond what thought
can reach, or words express!
Grief's water-course, and Sorrow's source
are turn'd to joyful streams.
Their old distress and heaviness
are vanished like dreams.



For God above in arms of love
doth dearly them embrace,
And fills their sprights with such delights
and pleasures in his grace;
As shall not fail, nor yet grow stale
through frequency of use:
Nor do they fear Gods Favour there
to forfeit by abuse.


For there the Saints are perfect Saints,
and holy ones indeed,
From all the sin, that dwelt within
their mortal bodies, freed:
Made Kings and Priests to God, through Christs
dear loves transcendency,
There to remain, and there to reign
with him Eternally.


[I walk'd and did a little Mole-hill view]

I walk'd and did a little Mole-hill view,
Full peopled with a most industrious crew
Of busie Ants, where each one labour'd more,
Then if he were to bring home Indian Ore;
Here wrought the Pioneers, there march'd the Bands,
Here Colonies went forth to plant new Lands:
These hasted out, and those supplies brought in,
As if they had some sudden Siege foreseen:
Until there came an angry Spade, and cast
Countrey and People to a Pit at last.
Again, I view'd a Kingdom in a Hive,
Where every one did work, and so all thrive;
Some go, some come, some war, some watch & ward,
Some make the works, & some the works do guard.
These frame their curious Waxen-cells, and those
Do into them their Nectar drops dispose:
Until the greedy Gardner brought his smoke,
And, for the work, did all the workmen choke.
Lo here, frail Mortals may fit Emblems see
Of their great toil, and greater vanity.
They weary out their brain, their strength, their time,
While some to Arts, and some to Honours climb:
They search Earth's bowels, cross the roaring Seas,
Mortgage their Souls, and forfeit all their Ease,
Grudge Night her sleep, and lengthen out the day,
To fat these Bigs, & cram those Chests with clay,


They rack and charm each Creature to explore
Some latent Quintessence, not known before:
Torture and squeez out all its juice and bloud,
To try if they can now find out that GOOD
Which Solomon despair'd of, but at last
On the same shore of Vanity are cast;
The Spade stops their career of Pride and Lust,
And calls them from their Clay unto their Dust,
Leave off your Circles, Archimede, away,
The King of Terror calls, and will not stay:
Miser, kiss all your Bags, and then lie down;
Scholar, your Books; Monarch, yield up your Crown;
Give way Wealth, Honour, Arts, Thrones; back make room,
That these pale Souls may come unto their doom
Nor shew vain men the fruit of all that pain,
Which in the end nothing but Loss did gain:
Compute your Lives, and all your Hours up cast,
Lo here's the total sum of All at last.
I rose up early, sat up late, to know
As much as Men, as Tongues, as Books could shew
I toil'd to search all Science and all Art,
But died ignorant of mine own Heart.
I got great Honour, and my Fame did stream
As far as doth the Mornings shining Beam;
My Name into a page of Titles swell'd,
My head a Crown, my hand a Scepter hold:
Ador'd without, but shameful lusts within;
Adorn'd with Titles, but defil'd with sin.
With anxious thoughts, with saddest cares [illeg.]
I gain'd these Lordships and this Soul I list:


My greedy Heir now hovers o'r my pelf,
I purchas'd Land for him, Hell for my self,
Go on you nobler Brains, and fill your sight
As full of Learning as the Sun's of light;
Expand your Souls to Truth as wide as Day,
Know all that Men, know all that Angels say:
Write shops of Volumes, and let every Book
Be fill'd with lustre as was Moses look,
Yet know, all this is but a better kind
Of sublime vanity, and more refin'd:
Except a saving knowledge crown the rest,
Devils know more, and yet shall ne'r be blest.
Go on, ambitious Worms, yet, yet aspire,
Lay a sure Scene how you may yet rise higher:
March forward, Macedonian Horn, add on
Gaza to Tyre, Indies to Babylon;
Make stirrups of the peoples backs and bones,
Climb up by them to Diadems and Thrones:
Thy Crowns are all but Grass; thine was the toil,
Thy Captains come and they divide the spoil.
Except one heav'nly Crown crown all the rest,
Devils are Potentates, and yet not blest.
Go on, base dunghil-souls, heap gold as mire,
Sweep silver as the dust, emulate Tyre,
Fill every Ware house, purchase every Field,
Add house to house, Pelion on Ossa build;
Get Mida's vote to transubstantiate
Whate'r you please all into golden plate;
Build wider Barns, sing requiem to your heart,
Feel your wealths pleasures only, not their smart:


Except his Riches who for us was poor,
Do sweeten those which Mortals so adore;
Except sublimer wealth crown all the rest,
Devils have nobler Treasures, yet not blest.
Cease then from vain delights, & set your mind
That solid and enduring GOOD to find,
Which sweetens life and death, which will encrease
On an immortal Soul immortal peace;
Which will replenish and advance you higher
Then ere your own Ambition could aspire.
Fear your great Maker with a child-like aw,
Believe his Grace, love and obey his Law.
This is the total work of man, and this
Will crown you here with Peace, and there with Bliss
Be kind unto your selves, believe and try:
If not, go on, fill up your lusts and die.
Sing peace unto your selves; 'twill once be known
Whose word shall stand, your Judg's, or your own
Crown thee with Rose-buds, satiate thine eyes,
Glut every serse with her own vanities:
Melt into pleasures, until that which Lust
Did not before consume, rot into dust:
The Thrones are set, the Books wil strait be read
Hell will her Souls, & graves give up their dead
Then there will be (and the time is not far)
Fire on the Bench, and Stubble at the Bar.
O sinners ruminate these thoughts agen,
You have been Beast enough, at last be Men.
Christ yet intreats, but if you will not turn,
Where Grace will not convert, there Fire wil burn




What mortal man can with his span
mete out Eternity?
Or fathom it by depth of wit,
or strength of memory?
The lofty skie is not so high;
hell's depth to this is small:
The world so wide is but a stride,
compared herewithall.


It is a main great Ocean,
withouten Bank or Bound:
A deep Abyss, wherein there is
no bottom to be found.
This world hath stood now since the Floud
for thousand years well near,
And had before endured more
then sixteen hundred year:


But what's the time from the worlds prime
unto this present day,


If we thereby Eternity
to measure should assay?
The whole duration since the Creation,
though long, yet is more little,
If placed by Eternity,
then is the smallest {rittle.}


Tell every Star both near and far
in Heavens bright Canopee,
That doth appear throughout the year,
of high or low degree:
Tell every Tree that thou canst see
in this vast Wilderness,
Up in the Woods, down by the Flouds,
in thousand miles progress:


The sum is vast, yet not so vast
but that thou mayst go on
To multiply the Leaves thereby,
that hang those trees upon:
Add thereunto the drops, that thou
imaginest to be
In April showr's, that bring forth Flowr's
and Blossoms plenteously:


Number the Fowls and living Souls
that through the air do flie,
The winged Hosts in all the Coasts
beneath the starry Skie:
Count all the grass as thou dost pass
through many a pasture land,


And dewy drops that on the tops
of Herbs and Plants do stand:


Number the Sand upon the Strand,
And Atomes of the air;
And do thy best on Man and Beast
to reckon every Hair:
Take all the Dust, if so thou lust,
and add to thine account:
Yet shall the years of sinners tears
the number far surmount.


Nought joyn'd to Nought can ne'r make ought
nor Cyphers make a Sum:
Nor things Finite to Infinite
by multiplying come:
A Cockle-shell may serve as well
to lave the Ocean dry,
As finite things and Reckonings
to bound Eternity.


O happy they that live for ay
with Christ in Heav'n above!
Who know withall that nothing shall
deprive them of his love.
Eternity! Eternity!
Oh, were it not for thee,
The Saints in Bliss and Happiness
could never happy be.



For if they were in any fear
that this their joy might cease,
It would annoy (if not destroy)
and interrupt their peace:
But being sure it shall endure
so long as God shall live;
The thoughts of this unto their bliss
do full perfection give.


Cheer up, you Saints, amidst your wants
and sorrows many a one:
Lift up the head, shake off all dread,
and moderate your mone.
Your sufferings and evil things
will suddenly be past:
Your sweet Fruitions, and blessed Visions
for evermore shall last.


Lament and mourn you that must burn
amidst those flaming Seas:
If once you come to such a doom,
for ever farewell ease.
O sad estate and desperate,
that never can be mended,
Until Gods will shall change, or till
Eternity be ended!


If any one this Question
shall unto me propound;


What, have the years of sinners tears
no limits or no bound?
It kills our heart to think of smart,
and pains that last for ever;
And hear of fire that shall expire,
or be extinguish'd, never.


I'l answer make, (and let them take
my words as I intend them;
For this is all the Cordial
that here I have to lend them)
When Heav'n shall cease to flow with peace,
and all felicity:
Then Hell may cease to be the place
of wo and misery.


When Heav'n is Hell, when Ill is Well,
when Vertue turns to Vice,
When Wrong is Right, when Dark is Light,
when Nought is of great price:
Then may the years of sinners tears
and sufferings expire,
And all the hosts of damned ghosts
escape out of hell-fire.


When Christ above shall cease to love;
when God shall cease to reign,
And be no more, as heretofore,
the worlds great Soveraign,
Or not be just, or favour Iust,
or in mens sins delight:


Then wicked men (and not till then)
to Heav'n may take their flight.


When Gods great Power shall be brought lower
by forein Puissance;
Or be decay'd, and weaker made
through Times, continuance:
When drousiness shall him oppress,
and lay him fast asleep:
Then sinful men may break their Pen,
and out of Prison creep.


When those in Glory shall be right sorry
they may not change their place,
And wish to dwell with them in Hell,
never to see Christ's face:
Then those in pain may freedom gain,
and be with glory dight:
Then hellish Fiends may be Christs Friends
and Heirs of Heaven hight.


Then! Ah poor men! what! not till then
no, not an hour before:
For God is just, and therefore must
torment them evermore.
Eternity! Eternity!
thou mak'st hard hearts to bleed:
The thoughts of thee in miseree,
do make men wail indeed.



When they remind what's still behind,
and ponder this word, NEVER,
That they must here be made to bear
Gods Vengeance for EVER:
The thought of this more bitter is
then all they feel beside:
Yet what they feel, nor heart of steel,
to flesh of brass can 'bide.


To lie in wo, and undergo
the direful pains of Hell,
And know withal, that there they shall
for ay, and ever dwell;
And that they are from rest as far,
when fifty thousand year,
Twice told, are spent in punishment,
as when they first came there.


This, Oh! this makes Hell's fiery flakes
much more intollerable;
This makes frail wights and damned spright
to bear their Plagues unable.
This makes men bite, for fell despite,
their very tongues in twain:
This makes them roar for great horror,
and trebleth all their pain.



And now, good Reader, I return again
To talk with thee, who hast been at the pain
To read throughout, and heed what went before;
And unto thee I'l speak a little more.
Give ear, I pray thee, unto what I say,
That God may hear thy voice another day.
Thou hast a Soul, my friend, and so have I,
To save or lose a soul that cannot die:
A Soul of greater price than Gold or Gems,
A Soul more worth than Crowns and Diadems:
A Soul at first created like its Maker,
And of Gods Image made to be partaker:
Upon the wings of noblest Faculties
Taught for to soar above the starry skies,
And not to rest, until it understood
It self possessed of the chiefest Good
And since the Fall, thy Soul retaineth still
The Faculties of Reason and of Will;
But Oh! how much deprav'd and out of frame,
As if they were some others, not the same,
Thine understanding dismally benighted,
And Reasons eye in spir'tual things dim sighted,
Or else stark blind: thy Will inclin'd to evil,
And nothing else, a slave unto the Devils
That loves to live, and liveth to transgress,
But shuns the ways of God and holiness,


All thine affections are disordered:
And thou by headstrong passions art misled.
What need I tell thee of thy crooked way,
And many wicked wandrings, every day?
Or that thy own transgressions are more
In number, then the sands upon the shore?
Thou art a lump of wickedness become,
And mayst with horrour think upon thy doom:
Until thy soul be washed in the floud
Of Christs most dear, soul-cleansing precious bloud;
That, that alone can do away thy sin
Which thou wert born and hast long lived in.
That, only that, can pacifie Gods wrath,
If apprehended by a lively faith,
Now whil'st the day and means of grace doth last,
Before the opportunity be past.
But if, O man, thou liv'st a Christless creature,
And death surprize thee in a state of nature,
(As who can tell but that may be thy case)
How wilt thou stand before thy Judges face?
When he shall be reveal'd in flaming fire,
And come to pay ungodly men their hire:
To execute due vengeance upon those
That know him not, or that have been his foes:
What wilt thou answer unto his demands,
When he requires a reason at thine hands
Of all the things that thou hast said, or done,
Or left undone, or set thine heart upon?
When he shall thus with thee expostulate;
What cause hadst thou thy Maker for to hate,
To take up arms against thy Soveraign,
And enmity against him to maintain?
What injury hath God Almighty done thee?
What good hath he withheld that might have won thee?
What evil or injustice hast thou found
In him, that might unto thy hurt redound?


If neither felt nor feared injury
Hath moved thee to such hostility:
What made thee then the Fountain to forsake,
And unto broken Pits thy self betake?
What reason hadst thou to dishonour God,
Who thee with Mercies never ceast to load?
Because the Lord was good, hast thou been evil,
And taken part against him with the Devil?
For all his cost to pay him with despite!
And all his love with hatred to requite!
Is this the fruit of Gods great patience,
To wax more bold in disobedience?
To kick against the bowels of his love!
Is this aright his bounty to improve?
Stand still, ye Heav'ns, and be astonished,
That God by man should thus be injured.
Give ear, O Earth, and tremble at the sin
Of those that thine Inhabitants have bin.
But thou, vile wretch, hast added unto all
Thine other faults, and facts so criminal,
The damning sin of wilful Unbelief.
Of all Transgressors hadst thou been the chief;
Yet when time was, thou mightst have been set free
From sin, and wrath, and punishment by me.
But thou wouldst not accept of Gospel grace,
Nor on my terms eternal life embrace.
As if all thy breaches of Gods Law
Were not enough upon thy head to draw
Eternal wrath, thou hast despis'd a Saviour,
Rejected me, and trampled on my favour.
How oft have I stood knocking at thy door,
And been denied entrance evermore?
How often hath my Spirit been withstood,
Whenas I sent him to have done thee good?
Thou hast no need of any one to plead
Thy cause, or for thy Soul to intercede:


Plead for thy self, if thou hast ought to say,
And pay thy forfeitures without delay.
Behold, thou dost ten thousand Talents owe:
Or pay thy debt, or else to prison go.
Think, think, O man, when Christ shall thus unfold
Thy secret guilt, and make thee to behold
The ugly face of all thy sinful errours,
And fill thy face with his amazing terrours,
And let thee see the flaming pit of hell,
(Where all that have no part in him shall dwel)
When he shall thus expostulate the case?
How canst thou bear to look him in the face?
What wi't thou do without an Advocate,
Or plead, when as thy state is desperate?
Dost think to put him off with fair pretences?
Or wilt thou hide and cover thine offences?
Can any thing from him concealed be,
Who doth the hidden things of darkness see?
Art thou of force his power to withstand?
Canst thou by might escape out of his hand;
Dost thou intend to run out of his sight,
And save thy self from punishment by flight?
Or wilt thou be eternally accurst,
And 'bide his vengeance, let him do his worst?
Oh, who can bear his indignations heat?
Or 'bide their pains of hell which are so great?
If then thou neither canst his wrath endure,
Nor any ransome after death procure:
If neither Cries nor Tears can move his heart
To pardon thee, or mitigate thy smart;
But unto Hell thou must perforce be sent
With dismal horrour and astonishment:
Consider, O my Friends, what cause thou hast
With fear and trembling, while as yet thou mayst,
To lay to heart thy sin and misery,
And to make out after the Remedy.


Consider well the greatness of thy danger,
O child of wrath, and object of Gods anger.
Thou hangest over the infernal pit
By one small thread, and car'st thou not a whit?
There's but a step between thy soul and death:
Nothing remains but stopping of thy breath,
(Which may be done to morrow, or before)
And then thou art undone for evermore:
Let this awaken thy security,
And make thee look about thee speedily.
How canst thou rest an hour, or sleep a night,
Or in thy creature comforts take delight?
Or with vain toys thy self forgetful make
How near thou art unto the burning Lake?
How canst thou live without tormenting fears?
How canst thou hold from weeping flouds of tears,
Yea, tears of bloud, I might almost have said,
If such like tears could from thine eyes be shed?
To gain the world what will it profit thee,
And lose thy soul and self eternally?
Eternity on one small point dependeth:
The man is lost that this short life mis spendeth.
For as the Tree doth fall, right so it lies:
And man continues in what state he dies.
Who happy die, shall happy rise again:
Who cursed die shall cursed still remain.
If under sin and wrath death leaves thee bound,
At Judgement under wrath thou shalt be found:
And then wo, wo that ever thou wert born
O wretched man, of heaven and earth forlorn!
Consider this, all ye that God forget,
Who all his threatnings at nought do set,
Lest into pieces he begin to tear
Your souls, and there be no deliverer.
O you that now sing care and fear away,
Think often of that formidable day,


Wherein the Heav'ns with a mighty noise,
And with an hideous heart-confounding voice,
Shall pass away together being roll'd.
As men are wont their garments up to fold:
When th'Elements with fervent heat shall melt,
And living creatures in the same shall swelt,
And all together in those flames expire,
Which set the earth's foundations on fire.
Oh, what amazement will your hearts be in,
And how will you to curse your selves begin,
For all your damned sloth, and negligence,
And unbelief, and gross impenitence,
When you shall hear that dreadful Sentence past,
That all the wicked into hell be cast?
What horrour will your consciences surprise,
When you shall hear the fruitless-doleful cries
Of such as are compelled to depart
Unto the place of everlasting smart?
What, when you see the sparks flie out of hell,
And view the Dungeon where you are to dwell,
Wherein you must eternally remain
In anguish and intollerable pain?
What, when your hands and feet are bound together,
And you are cast into that Lake for ever?
Then shall you feel the truth of what you hear,
That hellish pains are more then you can bear;
And that those torments are an hundred fold
More terrible then ever you were told.
Nor speak I this, good Reader, to torment thee
Before the time, but rather to prevent thee
From running headlong to thine own decay
In such a perillous and deadly way.
We who have known and felt Jehovah's terrours,
Perswade men to repent them of their errours.
And turn to God in time, ere his Decree
Bring forth, and then there be no remedee,


If in the night, when thou art fast asleep,
Some friend of thine, that better watch doth keep,
Should see thy house all on a burning flame,
And thee almost inclosed with the same:
If such a friend should break thy door & wake thee,
Or else by force out of the peril take thee:
What wouldst thou take his kindness in ill part?
Or frown upon him for his good desert?
Such, O my friend, such is thy present state,
And danger, being unregenerate.
Awake, awake, and then thou shalt perceive
Thy peril greater then thou wilt believe.
Lift up thine eyes and see Gods wrathful ire
Preparing unextinguishable fire
For all that live and die impenitent.
Awake, awake, O sinner, and repent.
And quarrel not, because I thus alarm
Thy Soul to save it from eternal harm.
Perhaps thou harbourest such thoughts as these,
I hope I may enjoy my carnal ease
A little longer, and my self refresh
With those delights that gratifie the flesh:
And yet repent before it be too late,
And get into a comfortable state.
I hope I have yet many years to spend,
And time enough those matters to attend.
Presumptuous heart! is God engag'd to give
A longer time to such as love to live
Like Rebels still, who think to slain his Glory
By wickedness, and after to be sorry?
Unto thy lust shall he be made a drudge,
Who thee, and all ungodly men shall judge?
Canst thou account sin sweet, and yet confess
That, first or last, it ends in bitterness?
Is sin a thing that must procure thee sorrow,
And wouldst thou dally with't another morrow?


O foolish man, who lovest to enjoy
That which will thee distress or else destroy!
What gained Samson by his Dalilah?
What gained David by his Bathsheba?
The one became a slave, lost both his eyes.
And made them sport that were his enemies:
The other penneth, as a certain token
Of God's displeasure, that his bones were broken.
Read, whoso list, and ponder what he reads,
And he shall find small joy in evil deeds.
Moreover this consider, that the longer
Thou liv'st in sin, thy sin will grow the stronger:
And then it will an harder matter prove,
To leave those wicked haunts that thou dost love.
The Blackmore may as eas'ly change his skin,
As old transgressours leave their wonted sin.
And who can tell what may become of thee,
Or where thy Soul in one days time may be?
We see that Death nor old nor young men spares,
But one and other takes at unawares.
For in a moment, whilst men Peace do cry,
Destruction seizeth on them suddenly.
Thou who this morning art a living wight,
Mayst be a Corps and damned Ghost ere night.
Oh dream not then, that it will serve the turn
Upon thy death-bed for thy sins to mourn.
But think how many have been snatch'd away,
And had no time for Mercy once to pray.
It's just with God Repentance to deny
To such, as put it off until they dy.
And late Repentance seldom proveth true:
Which if it fail, thou know'st what must ensue.
For after this short life is at an end,
What is amiss thou never canst amend.
Believe, O man, that to procrastinate,
And to put off until it be too late,


As 'tis thy sin, so is it Satans wile,
Whereby he doth great multitudes beguile.
How many thousands hath this strong delusion
Already brought to ruin and confusion,
Whose souls are now reserv'd in Iron Chains
Under thick darkness to eternal pains?
They thought of many years, as thou dost now:
But were deceived quite, and so mayst thou.
Oh then, my friend, while not away thy time,
Nor by Rebellion aggravate thy Crime.
Oh put not off Repentance till to morrow.
Adventure not without God's leave to borrow
Another day to spend upon thy lust:
Lest God (that is most holy, wise, and just)
Denounce in wrath, and to thy terrour say,
This night shall Devils fetch thy Soul away.
Now seek the face of God with all thy heart,
Acknowledge unto him how vile thou art;
Tell him thy sins deserve eternal wrath,
And that it is a wonder that he hath
Permitted thee so long to draw thy breath,
Who might have cut thee off by sudden death,
And sent thy Soul unto the lowest Pit,
From whence no price should ever ransom it,
And that he may most justly do it still
(Because thou hast deserv'd it) if he will.
Yet also tell him that, if he shall please,
He can forgive thy sins, and thee release:
And that in Christ his Son he may be just,
And justifie all those that on him trust;
That though thy sins are of a Crimson dye,
Yet Christ his bloud can cleanse thee thorowly.
Tell him, that he may make his glorious Name
More wonderful by covering thy shame.
That Mercy may be greatly magnify'd,
And Justice also fully satisfy'd,


If he shall please to own thee in his Son,
Who hath paid dear for Mans Redemption.
Tell him thou hast an unbelieving heart,
Which hindreth thee from coming for a part
In Christ: and that, although his terrours aw thee.
Thou canst not come, til he be pleas'd to draw thee.
Tell him, thou know'st thy heart to be so bad,
And thy condition so exceeding sad,
That though Salvation may be had for nought,
Thou canst not come and take, till thou be brought,
Oh beg of him to bow thy stubborn will
To come to Christ, that he thy lusts may kill.
Look up to Christ for his attractive pow'r.
Which he exerteth in a needful hour;
Who saith, When as I lifted up shall be,
Then will I draw all sorts of men to me,
Oh, wait upon him with due diligence,
And trembling fear in every Ordinance,
Unto his Call earnest attention give,
Whose voice makes deaf men hear, & dead men live,
Thus weep, and mourn, thus hearken, pray, & wait:
Till he behold, and pity thine estate,
Who is more ready to bestow his Grace,
Then thou the same art ready to embrace.
Yea, he hath might enough to bring thee home,
Though thou hast neither strength nor wil to come.
If he delay to answer thy Request:
Know that oft times he doth it for the best:
Not with intent to drive us from his doore,
But for to make us importune him more;
Or else to bring us duely to confess,
And be convinc't of our unworthiness.
Oh be not weary then, but persevere
To beg his Grace, till he thy suit shall hear;
And leave him not, nor from his footstool go,
Till over thee Compassion's skirt he throw.


Eternal life will recompence thy pains,
If sound at last, with Everlasting gains.
For if the Lord be pleas'd to hear thy cries,
And to forgive thy great iniquities,
Thou wilt have cause for ever to admire
And laud his Grace, that granted thy desire.
Then shalt thou find thy labour is not lost:
But that the good obtain'd surmounts the cost.
Nor shalt thou grieve for loss of sinful pleasures,
Exchang'd for heavenly joyes & lasting treasures.
The yoke of Christ, which once thou didst esteem
A tedious yoke, shall then most easie seem.
For why? The love of Christ shall thee constrain
To take delight in that which was thy pain.
The ways of Wisdom shall be pleasant ways,
And thou shalt chuse therein to spend thy days.
If once thy Soul be brought to such a pass:
O bless the Lord, and magnifie his Grace.
Thou, that of late hadst reason to be sad,
May'st now rejoyce, and be exceeding glad;
For thy condition is as happy now,
As erst it was disconsolate and low.
Thou art become as rich, as whilome poor;
As blessed now, as cursed heretofore.
For being cleansed with Christs precious bloud,
Thou hast an intr'est in the Chiefest Good:
God's anger is towards thy soul appeased:
And in his Christ he is with thee well-pleased.
Yea, he doth look upon thee with a mild
And gracious aspect as upon his child.
He is become thy Father and thy Friend,
And will defend thee from the cursed Fiend.
Thou need'st not fear the roaring Lions rage,
Since God Almighty doth himself engage
To bear thy Soul in Everlasting Arms,
Above the reach of all destructive harms.


Whats'ever here thy sufferings may be,
Yet from them all the Lord shall rescue thee:
He will preserve thee by his wond'rous might
Unto that rich Inheritance in light.
Oh sing for joy, all ye Regenerate,
Whom Christ hath brought into this blessed state,
O love the Lord, all ye his Saints, who hath
Redeemed you from everlasting wrath:
Who hath by dying made your Souls to live,
And what he dearly bought doth freely give.
Give up your selves to walk in all his ways,
And study how to live unto his praise.
The time is short you have to serve him here:
The day of your deliverance draweth near.
Lift up your heads, ye upright ones in heart,
Who in Christ's Purchase have obtain'd a part,
Behold! he rides upon a shining Cloud,
With Angels voice, and Trumpet sounding loud.
He comes to save his folk from all their foes,
And plague the men that Holiness oppose.
So come, Lord Jesus, quickly come we pray,
Yea come and hasten our Redemption day.



A SONG of EMPTINESS, to fill up the Empty Pages following.

Vain , frail, short liv'd and miserable man,
Learn what thou art when thine estate is best;
A restless Wave o'th' troubled Ocean,
A Dream, a lifeless Picture finely drest:
A Wind, a Flower, a Vapour, and a Bubble,
A Wheel that stands not still, and a trembling Reed,
A rolling Stone, dry dust, light Chaff, and Stubble,
A Shadow of something, but nought indeed.
Learn what deceitful Toys, and empty things,
This World and all its best Enjoyments be:
Out of the Earth no true Contentment springs;
But all things here are vexing Vanitee.
For what is Beauty, but a fading Flower?
Or what is Pleasure, but the Devils bait,
Whereby he catcheth whom he would devour,
And multitudes of Souls doth ruinate?
And what are Friends, but mortal men, as we?
Whom Death from us may quickly separate?
Or else their hearts may quite estranged be,
And all their love be turned into hate.


And what are Riches to be doted on?
Uncertain, fickle, and ensnaring things!
They draw mens Souls into Perdition,
And when most needed, take them to their wings.
Ah foolish man, that sets his heart upon
Such empty shadows, such wild fowl as these,
That being gotten will be quickly gone,
And whil'st they stay increase but his disease!
As in a Dropsie, drinking drought begets:
The more he drinks, the more he still requires?
So on this World whoso affection sets,
His Wealth's encrease encreaseth his desires.
O happy man, whose Portion is above,
Where Floods, where Flames, where Foes cannot bereave him.
Most wretched man, that fixed hath his love
Upon this World, that surely will deceive him!
For what is Honour? what is Sov'raignty,
Whereto mens hearts so restlesly aspire?
Whom have they Crowned with Felicity
When did they ever satisfie desire?
The Ear of man with hearing is not fill'd:
To see new sights still coveteth the Eye:
The croking Stomack though it may be still'd,
Yet crokes again without a new supply.
All earthly things mans cravings answer not,
Whose little Heart would all the world contain,
(If all the world should fall to one mans Lot)
And notwithstanding empty still remain.
The Eastern Conquerour was said to weep,
When he the Indian Ocean did view,


To see his conquests bounded by the Deep,
And no more worlds remaining to be subdue.
Who would that man in his Enjoyments bless,
Or envy him, or covet his estate,
Whose gettings do augment his greediness,
And make his Wishes more intemperate?
Such is the wonted and the common guise
Of those on Earth that bear the greatest sway:
If with a few the case be otherwise,
They seek a Kingdom that abides for ay.
Moreover they of all the Sons of men
That Rule, and are in highest Places set,
Are most inclin'd to scorn their Brethren,
And God himself (without great Grace) forget.
For as the Sun doth blind the gazers eyes
That for a time they nought discern aright:
So Honour doth befool and blind the Wise,
And their own Lustre 'reaves them of their sight.
Great are their Dangers, manifold their Cares:
Through which, whil'st others sleep, they scarcely nap:
And yet are oft surprized unawares,
And fall unweeting into Envies Trap.
The mean Mechanick fina's his kindly rest:
All void of fear sleepeth the Countrey Clown:
When greatest Princes often are distrest,
And cannot sleep upon their Beds of Down.
Could Strength or Valour men Immortalize,
Could Wealth or Honour keep them from decay,
There were some cause the same to Idolize,
And give the lye to that which I do say:


But neither can such things, themselves endure
Without the hazzard of a Change one hour,
Nor such as trust in them can they secure
From dismal days, or Deaths prevailing power.
If Beauty could the beautiful defend
From Deaths dominion, then fair Absalome
Had not been brought to such a shameful end:
But fair and foul unto the Grave must come.
If Wealth or Scepters could Immortal make,
Then, wealthy Crœsus, wherefore art thou dead?
If Warlike Force, which makes the World to quake,
Then why is Julius Cæsar perished?
Where are the Scipio's, Thunderbolts of War?
Victorious Pompey, Cesars Enemee?
Stout Hannibal, Rome's Terrour, known so far?
Great Alexander, what's become of thee?
If Gifts and Bribes Deaths favour might but win,
If Power it force, or Threatnings might it fray;
All these and more, had still surviving bin:
But all are gone, for Death will take no Nay.
Such is this World with all her Pomp and Glory;
Such are the men whom worldly eyes admire:
Cut down by Time, and now become a Story,
That we might after better things aspire.
Go boast thy self of what thine heart enjoys,
Vain man! triumph in all thy worldly Bliss:
Thy best Enjoyments are but trash and toys;
Delight thy self in that which worthless is.
Omnia prætereunt præter Amare Deum.