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gratitude above thc Reprobate. The Reprobate indeed have cause to thank God for preparing that Calling, whereby they might have been saved as others are, and are to blame only their own contempt and folly: but they have not this to thank God for, that he did alter their Calling to a better, when he found the event of this would be Evil unto them; neither can they blame him, seeing he was no way bound to do so; for if he were, he should not have suffered any to perish at all. And the Elect who obey their Calling, which of them can tell how often God in the preparation of their Calling, changed and amended it, ( to speak af. ter our manner of understanding, who use thus to bring things to perfection and to our liking,) untill he had brought it to that order, whereof he saw the effect would be the free Conversion of the Called.
But it was admitted only, not affirm'd, that in the Grace of Vocation God doth no more for the Elect than for the Reprobate : for what if the time wherein a Convert obeyeth be not the first, second, third, or the hundreth time that he hath been Called upon, but God hath shewed him that Patience, as one that would not give him over until he won him? What if the time wherein the unconverted refused Mercy, was but the first, second, or the third, after which God in just severity would no more move him by his Spirit, nor wait upon him, but forsook him? Here is much inequality in Grace and Favour. For it is enough for my supposition ( viz, of the liberty of Man's will under Grace, and of two equally Called, whereof one obeys, and not the other) that sometimes two may be equally Called, and unequally obey, though all that be Called be not every one called as oft as a. nother; for as we may suppose an equality in fome, so do we confess an infinite variety and inequality
· in most, yet there is a time when that hath place
which our Church faith in the Homily of the knowledge of the Scripture, That God receiveth the Learned and Unlearned, and casteth away none, but is indifferent to all.
To the second, as to the matter of thankfulness, I answer, that as Grace is not therefore Grace, because it is given to one, and denyed to another, but because it is given to the unworthy; so my thanks are not therefore given to God, because he hath been Merciful to me, more than to another, but because he hath been Merciful to me unworthy: and since Grace were not the less but the greater if it were given to all; my thanks are not diminished because many more are partakers with me in the same benefits, but the greater; and would have been yet greater, had more still been partakers than are. Hear the words of Salvian, or whoever be the * Author; But haply thou dost say, there is a general debt of all Men touching these things of which we speak, and that the whole race of Mankind without exception are obliged thereunto; (viz. for the Benefits of Christ's Passion;) we confess it is truth. But doth any Man therefore owe the less, because another also oweth the like fum ? &c. tho it be a general debt, no question it is also a special one; altho it oblige all Men in common, yet so it doth every one in particular : &c. for Christ as he suffered for all, so be suffered for every one, and bestowed himself upon all, as well as upon every individual; and gave himself wholby for all, and wholly for each particular Perfon. And in regard of this, whatever our Saviour by his suffering performed, as all owe the whole Benefit of it to him, no less doth every one : except perhaps in this, every fin. ple Person owes more than all Mankind, that he hath reaped as much benefit thereby, as they all.";. . This is a good rule for' thankfulness': but take * Ad Eccl. Cathol. Lib. 2. Pag. 376 O&av.
heed of the Pharisees form of thanks for Graces, with comparison to other folkes; Lord, I thank thee that I am not like other Men, or as this Publican. Indeed as some put the case of Mankind like a company of Rebels, out of whom the King choofeth whom he pleaseth to Pardon, and executes the rest with the sword; those pardoned owe thanks for their Pardon, and more thanks for Culling them out, who were like to the rest in Rebellion. But the Scripture puts not the case of Mankind so, but rather thus; God by the Gospel as a King, Mer. cifully proclaims a General Pardon to all the company of Rebels in such a County, upon Condition that he that cometh in and yieldeth his Sword, and taketh at the Kings pavilion a Ticket of his Pardon, be free to go home and enjoy the State of a good Subject; but they that stand out, and refuse this Grace, be after luch a day pursued with Fire and Sword: They that submit, magnify the amplitude of the King's Mercy, sorrow for such as obftinately stand out, justifie his.execution done up. on stubborn, ungrateful Rebels. You think to gain greater thanks to God, by amplifying his Grace, upon one consideration of sparing only some, but with prejudice to his Truth proclaimed to all. I hope to win greater thanks to God, by amplifying his Grace upon another consideration, of sparing all upon favourable conditions, according to the Gospel, the most wise comprehension of the Grace, Mercy, Ju. stice, and Truth of the Almighty.
To the third particular I answer, for. matter of Glorying, let this rule stand Good, let him that Gloryeth, Glory in the Lord, or let him not Glory, Remember again, that the Gifts of God are either immediate, and proceding from himself alone, as Prophecy, Tongues, &c. or mediate, and such as procede from God's Grace and Man's Will together, as I have declared: of those immediate Gifts
there is no Glorying; for the latter part of the Text is strong, What haft thon, that thou hast not received? And if thou hast received, why boastest thon as if thou hadft not received? Here having received excludech boasting over another whole not having received hath been no fault of his, it having proceded from the mere will of the giver. But for Gists mediate, as Faith and Repentance, and Obedience in any particular Duty, they must be considered as the Gifts of God, and as our Duties"; things necessary upon God's commandment, and upon the peril of our Salvation : as they are Gifts of God wrought in us by his Grace preventing, helping, and strengthning us, there is no Glorying of them but in the Lord. So St.
Paul Gloryeth; God's Grace towards me was not in vain, . Cor. 15. but I laboured more abundantly than they all : yet not 1, 10. but the Grace of God which was with me. I know both hil. 4. how to be abafed, and I know how to abound, &c.
I can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth me : Here also having received excludes Glorying in a Man's self. Again, the same Gifts considered as Duties owing by us, and as proceding from the will of Man, helped by Grace, are no matter of
Glorying, because they are due. Hence St. Paul, Cor. o. Though I Preach the Gospel, I have nothing to Glory of, 36. for necessity is laid upon me, yea, woe is me, if I Preach
not the Gospel: and woe is me, may the hearer of the Gospel say, If I believe not. Not only that we have received, but also that we have done but what was our Duty, excludes Glorying; accord
ing to that of our Lord; Dorb be thank that SerLuke. 17. vant, because he did the things that were commanded bim?
I trow not ; So likewise ye, when ye mall have done all things which are commanded you; say, we are unprofitable Servants; we have done that which was our Duty to do. What matter of boasting is it for a Man to have kept himself from a detestable Crime, whereinto another rushing, precipitated himself to Hell?
Yet I pray you do not exclude all kind of Glorying, 'H gi xaé not that which St. Paul nameth so; for our rejoicing Prorç @ Ta
και λοιπά. is this, the testimony of our Conscience, &c. The testi.co mony of a good Conscience is some Comfort and 12. Joy that he wanteth who hath an evil one. Let innocency wash her hands without a check of vainGlory: Let Samuel. call witness of his Integrity, and Nehemiah record his own good Deeds; The former Governours before me had been chargeable to the People, even their Servants bare rule over them: but So did not I, because of the fear of the Lord.
In general I answer to these three objections : When things succede well and prosperously unto us, whatever be our natural parts, whatever hath been our industry or our labour more than others, who is so void of Piety or of understanding, as not to ascribe his Good success unto God the Fountain of all Good, and the universal or Principal cause of all happy events, who buildeth the House more than all that labour on it, who keepeth the City above all that watch or ward, who giveth more to the increafe than all that plant or water: But yet the Builder, the Watchman, the Planter, the Waterer, have their parts and offices, which being neglected, the House is not Builded, the City is betrayed, the Tree is unfruitful. Because some little thing is done by Men but nothing comparable to that which is done by God, therefore is the form of the Saints rejoicing thus conceived, Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give Glory. That not unto us implies that fomething hath been done by us, and that Man's corrupt Heart is too ready to claim fome Glory to it self for it, but true Wisdom and Piety foon re. moyeth it and faith, Not unto us, O Lord, but to thy name give Glory.
Neither truly should these poor things of the will of Man, whether with or will, whether endeavour or Labour, whether yielding or obeying