Preached Before the Honourable
House of Commons,
St. MARGARET'S WESTMINSTER, January 30. 17023.
King CHARLES I
By W. DELAVNE, D. D.
President of St. John's College, And Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford.
Printed for S. Smith and B. Walford, at the Prince's Arms in St. Paul's Church-Yard. 1703.
Preached Before the Honourable
House of Commons, &c.
St. MAT, xxvii. 25.
Then answer'd all the people, and said, his bloud be on us and on our children.
AS long as this miserable Nation continu'd under that accursed Rebellion which brought our Royal Martyr to the block : So long it continued stupify'd by the greatness of its Sin, and insensible of Bloud-guiltiness, or the Vengeance of God which always follows it. The Rebels went on dayly adding Sin to Sin, with as quiet and unconconcern'd Consciences, as if they had bin treading in the plain way of their Duty, and the Bloud of their Soveraign had bin an acceptable Sacrifice to the Lord.
But when a Miraculous and even Visible Providence of God, out of the rubbish of Confusion had rais'd again the Orderly, Regular, and Beautiful Fabrick of our Ancient Constitution both of Church and State: a Sense of God and Religion arose up with it, the Sins of the Nation could be no longer look'd upon without Dread and Horrour; and the piety of the Parliament thought nothing less than an Annual day of Humiliation throughout the Kingdom, sufficient to testifie our sorrow and deprecate the wrath of God for so much guilt as the Bloud of this Day had lay'd upon us.
And there seems to. be the particular hand of Providence in disposing and ordering things so, that this precious bloud should be spill'd on the very Day when by our Kalendar the Second Lesson was in course this Chapter of St. Mathew,, which contains the History of our Saviours Crucifixion. What could be more proper, to arm that Pious Prince with patience against the Cruelty of his Bloudy Subjects, than to be put in mind just before his death; that his Lord and Master, even the Saviour of the World, endur'd greater indignitys and a sharper death from the hands of his Own Creatures? And what can give Us a quicker and deeper Sence of Gods wrath for the Spilling of Innocent Bloud, than a Reflection on those heavy Judgments which fell upon the Jews for the Bloud of their Messiah? And tho' the Divinity of Christ forbids any comparison between him and the person of our Martyr, tho' a King and a most Virtuous and Pious Man: yet their Sufferings were attended with too many of the same Circumstances, to be either hid or deny'd. Antecedent lyes and calumnies prepar'd the people for tumultuous outcryes against them, and after innumerable indignitys from the Scum of the World, they were brought as Criminals before Tribunals who were above the reach of any Earthly Judicature; there were they Both by false accusations Condemn'd as Malefactors, and Executed accordingly with the same Infamy.
But the punishment of the Jews indeed far exceeded the Vengeance which ever was or will be pour'd out on any other Nation: for when God's time was come to reckon with them, the Divinity of their Messiah so fully discover'd to them by Prophecys, declar'd by Himself, and confirm'd by his Doctrine and Miracles; was brought into the Account: and hence it is that tho near 1700 years are since run out, they are as far from having made Satisfaction to the Divine Justice as ever, and the Rod of God is still visibly over them.
Little did the People imagine what it was they call'd for upon themselves and their posterity, when they all answer'd and said, his Bloud be on Us and our Children. But they had shut their eyes against the the clearest evidence, it was time therefore for God to give them over to themselves, (which in Scripture language is to harden them) and let them unrestrain'd pursue the dictates of their blind and furious malice; which they did in opposition to the repeated endeavours of the Roman Governour to save Jesus. Pilate was sensible of his Innocence and that for Envy they had deliver'd him, v. 18. and had reason to hope it would be a very likely means to save him, if according to the custome of releasing a Prisoner to the Jews at the Passover, he pitch'd upon only Barabbas, a Notorious Robber, to propose with Jesus to their choice, v. 17. But the Chief Priests and Elders perswaded the multitude, that they should ask Barabbas And destroy Jesus, v. 20. and with noise and clamour prevail'd with Pilate against his conscience to comply fearing a tumult; but he wash'd his hands first before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the bloud of this Just Person; see ye to it. v. 24. Which terms they very readily accepted of, crying out, Let it be so; whatever guilt there may be in putting him to death, let it lye upon Us and our Posterity: his Bloud be on Us and on our Children.
From which words I shall take occasion to proceed in my following discourse on these three Heads, viz.
1st, I shall observe that a Nation may be properly and truely guilty of Sin, as well as a Single Person, and consequently lyable to Gods wrath.
2ly, I shall enquire what it is which renders a Nation properly and truly guilty of Sin.
3ly, I shall enquire when we may have sufficient reason to believe that God has forgiven a National Sin.
And then with some Application of what shall have bin said, I shall conclude.
1st, I shall observe that a Nation may be properly and truely guilty of sin, as well as a single person, and consequently lyable to Gods wrath,
By a Nation I do not mean all the Individuals of which it is compos'd separately as such, bur Collectively as united in Civil Society, and form'd into one Body Politick, by which means an whole Nation or People in a Legal Sense becomes one Single Person, and consequently is as capable of Moral Actions as any Individual. The World is properly and truly One Large Kingdom of which God is the sole Lord and Governour, and the several Kingdoms and States in it are so many small Corporations independant of each other as to their own Municipal Laws by which they are separately Govern'd: But nearly related as parts of the Same Great Empire, to the Laws of which they are all equally Subject. And as in these particular States, the lesser and subordinate Bodys Politick are answerable for going beyond the Powers granted them by their Charter, and doing any thing contrary to the Laws of the Land; and punishable sometimes (as the Nature of the Crime may be) in the Persons of those that Act, as well as in their Politick Capacity; but chiefly in the latter, by pecuniary Mulcts, or perhaps the dissolution of the Body: So the Grand States and Governments in the World, in all their Actions are oblig'd to have regard to the Laws of their Great Soveraign, and keep strictly to his Eternal rules of Piety, Justice and Equity; which if they transgress., they are as lyable to punishment as Individuals; with this only difference that Individuals are Corrected only with Judgments in this life in order to their amendment, their final punishment upon their impenitence being reserv'd to the next: But the Sentence against offending Nations must be always Executed in This World, because they have no Existence any where els.
This is a Truth so evident, that wherever there has bin any Sence of Religion and Morality, tho in Nations wholly given up to Idolatry, the belief of it has prevail'd: and not only the Jewish History, which is little more than an History of the Virtues and Sins of That People, and the dealings of God with them accordingly; but the History of all Nations affords a demonstration, that as God is Governour of it, so he do's in Righteousness Judg the World and the People with Equity.
Except the Sacred, no History gives a more clear proof of this matter than the Roman: where we have an account of a People which arose from as despicable a beginning as any Nation upon Earth, to the greatest pitch of grandeur the world ever knew; and this purely by Gods blessing on their rigid Virtue and strict Piety. They err'd indeed in the Object of their worship, but on this score they were upon the level with their Neighbours, having a great advantage of them in the Seriousness and Constancy of that, tho their mistaken, devotion; especially upon all public enterprises. And when all Moral Virtues were superadded; as Temperance, Frugality, Patience, Justice, Mercy, and Gratitude: 'twould have bin no hard matter to foresee on which side Providence should incline, when they contended with the Softness and Luxury of the Asiaticks, the Perfidy of the Africans, or Both in the Greeks. And 'tis very remarkable that of all their Conquests, those were obtain'd with most difficulty where they encounter'd Enemys who approach'd nearest to them in Virtue, as the Gauls and Germans: as their own Historians have observ'd.
But we need not have recourse to particular instances of Gods Ruling Providence over the Kingdoms of this World; for we find them all at one time or other under public Calamitys, which presuppose some National Sin committed, all Evil being the punishment and consequence of it. For as God by his Vindictive Justice is oblig'd to punish Sin, so by his Distributive Justice he is concern'd to reward Virtue, which when it cannot be done in a Future State must be done in This World: from whence it evidently follows, that if any Nation could be found Innocent and perfectly free from National Sins, it would be in all things happy and prosperous; but Experience affording us no such instance, we must conclude that all Nations are guilty of Sin, as well as all Private Persons.
Having thus (as I hope) sufficiently made good my observation in the first place, viz. that a Nation may be properly and truely Guilty of Sin as well as a Private person, and consequently lyable to Gods wrath: I proceed
2ly To enquire what it is which renders a Nation properly and truely Guilty of Sin. All Sin being a transgression of the Law, two things are necessary to be consider'd in order to answer this enquiry; 1st, What Laws a Nation is oblig'd to pay Obedience to, and 2ly, What it is which makes an Act to be a National Act.
1st, We are to consider what Laws a Nation is oblig'd to pay Obedience to: and they are twofold; the Laws of God, their Supreme Lord and Governour, and their Own Laws: whenever any Nation transgresseth in either case, That Nation is guilty of Sin. To transgress the Law of God will be allow'd on all hands to be a Sin; but then the Maxims which some Politicians lay down, and the Practice of most Governments, seem to tell us that it is not well agreed what the Law of God is in relation to States and Bodys Politick. They give us too much reason to imagine that in Their opinion there are Different rules for the conduct of Private persons, and the administration of Government.
Sincerity and Justice are undeniably allow'd to be the indispensible duty of Individuals; but the Reverse of those Virtues is sometimes esteem'd the Character of an Able Statesman, and the necessary Prudence of a Wise Government. To delude a Neighbour Nation with Counterfeit Pretences into Articles of Peace and Alliance, with a fix'd Resolution not to keep them, seem to be look'd upon as Art and Management; when the same dealing between Man and Man, would not fail to be call'd by its Right name, that is, Trick and Knavery. No body questions but Private persons are oblig'd not to do Evil that Good may come of it; but when Salus Populi Suprema Lex was set up as a Maxime of State, all the Laws of God (we know) as occasion requir'd were made to give way to it: and Robbery, Bloud and Sacrilege were look'd upon as Godly means, if they seem'd to move towards that great End. Gratitude is a duty of great obligation and esteem among private persons, and in truth not so much Generosity as strict Justice: But this seems too Low a Virtue for Kingdomes and Mighty States to Stoop to; 'tis an acknowledgment of an obligation, and that implies some want, some weakness and imperfection, which Pride forbids on any account to be own'd. Hence it is that true Service and inviolable fidelity are usually look'd upon at Best but the dull performance of Duty, but possibly attributed to no better a Principle than Cowardice, and rewarded accordingly with contempt: while the bold daring Opposer is Caress'd with the Smiles of a Court, and by Preferments paid for his Affronts.
But if the book of God be consulted, we shall find no flattery of Kings and Princes in it; no Indulgence to their Ambition, Dispensation with their Integrity, or Exemption from any of those Laws by which the meanest of their Subjects are bound: That their Elevation here is no more than what the Necessity of Government requires, but that as they shall dye like Men, they shall be judg'd like Men also, that is, by the Uniform and Immutable Laws of God; and that the Justice which is the Duty of Private persons is the same Righteousess that exalteth a Nation.
But besides the Laws of God, every Nation is bound by its Own Laws, and to Act by any other measures is a Sin; but for this reason indeed, because every breach of those Laws includes in it a transgression of the Divine, it being an Offence against Truth and Justice. The Civil Laws of a Country are of the nature of Articles of Agreement between the Rulers and their Subjects; Duty and Obedience is secur'd on one hand; and on the other Protection in Civil Rights, if the Subject breaks his part of the Covenant (as I may call it) his punishment is at hand, and if the Supreme Power breaks his, his punishment is no less certain tho more remote; for he is guilty before God, who is His Ruler, tho it is impossible he should be accountable for it in his own Dominions, for that would infer a power Superiour to the Supreme, which is a flat contradiction.
So much for the Laws to which a Nation is oblig'd to pay obedience.
We are 2ly to consider what it is which makes an Act, a National Act; and then it will plainly appear what it is which renders a Nation properly and truely guilty of Sin. A Nation being a Body Politick, and in a Legal Sence a single Person, (as was observ'd) nothing can be a National Act, but what is a Personal Act of the Body Politick. The Actions of Individuals as such, are only their own; and whether good or bad, are in no wise to be ascrib'd to the Nation, any farther than as the Government by wholesome Laws and a due Execution of them, may be an Instrumental cause of the Virtues; or by Negligence and Remisness of Discipline the Encourager of the Sins of the People. But all Acts of the Governing Power, whether Legislative or Executive are the true and proper Acts of the Nation: and when the former acts contrary to the Laws of God, or the latter either to those or the Laws of the Land, the Nation is guilty of Sin and lyable to punishment; how far soever Many, or the greater part of the Subjects, may be from assenting to or approving of it: they are parts of the Body Politick, and must necessarily share with it in its prosperity or adversity, tho' they were not personally concerned in deserving either.
Thus we have seen in general what it is which renders a Nation properly and truely guilty of Sin: but before I leave this matter, it may be convenient to be a little more particular. For the Sins of Nations no less than those of Private Persons, are subject to great Variety in the different Degrees of their malignity: being greater or less according to the several Circumstances which may attend them, or the Share the Will had in bringing them forth; from the Principles and Causes from whence they spring, or the Effects and Consequences which may follow after them. Man is a frail Creature, weak in his Will, and blind in his Understanding; the violence of temptation may over-power, or the suddenness of it surprise him: he may fall into Sin through involuntary errour and mistake, or if it be involuntary in its cause (as for want of will to be rightly inform'd) 'tis far from being of that deep Dye, as a Sin committed with the more Immediate and Deliberate consent of the Will. A Sin may spring from Principles and Causes in themselves good, but not rightly directed by the rules of our Duty: as when a Man out of a disposition desirous to oblige and unwilling to give offence suffers himself to be drawn into any sinful compliance; how different is this from .those Sins which proceed from Malice and Revenge, an earnest delire of Offending and Hurting, and a deliberate Resolution of doing all the mischief we can? The Consequences of some Sins terminate in the person of the Sinner, or have but a very small or distant influence on our Neighbour or the Public: but sure those Sins which in the very nature of them imply an Injury to other persons, draw them in to be partakers of our guilt, or tend to corrupt their Morals; that actually disturb the public peace and unity, or have a tendency towards: it, contract a much greater guilt. Thus also it is in National Sins; Some of them have so much of human frailty, and so little of the perverseness of the Will, springing from good Intentions, but mistaken Judgment: others may be of little moment as to Public Weal, committed through inadvertency, and so harmless in their consequences; that we 'may believe God looks upon them with an eye of pity and compassion, as knowing our frame and remembring that we are but dust. Some again there are of a more Scarlet Complexion, which may arise from a Supine Negligence in a Government, and That owing to an indifference as to all Principles of Virtue and Piety: others may proceed directly from the pravity and obstinacy of the Will, and draw after them a train of fatal consequences not only foreseen but design'd. These are they which kindle Gods wrath, and cause him to make bare his Arm and prepare for Vengeance. But above all when any indignity is offer'd to himself; all Sins indeed are an affront to the Divine Majesty, being a contempt of his Laws and Autority: but some over and above have a nearer relation to himself, and are really Personal affronts; as robbing him of that Honour which is peculiarly his due, or giving it to a Creature; Sacrilege, or invading his Property; and a profanation of things made sacred by a dedication of them to his Service. In these cases God (as I may say) is more than ordinarily Tender, for so he is pleas'd to express himself, when he tells us that on this account he is a Jealous God. And These or the like were the Chief causes of most of those Judgments upon the Jews which we read of in Holy Writ,
But as in private Persons there are Sins of Omission as well as Commission; so a Kingdom is not only guilty of Sin by an Unlawful Act, but by giving way to the growth of Wickedness and Impiety by a remiss Government; by not providing wholesome Laws for the restraining Vice and Immorality, or want of the due Execution of them, as was hinted before Sin as it was monsrrous and unnatural in its birch, so its growth and encrease is not by the common methods of improvement; but it thrives fastest by neglect, and multiplies most in those Soils which have the least Culture. But as an Husbandman by neglect of tillage is as much the Cause of those weeds and thirties which incumber his ground, as he would have bin of that good corn which by his cost and labour might have grown upon it, and shall reap the just fruits of his laziness in beggary and want: so a General depravation of Manners in any people dos not lay the Particular Sinners Only under guilt, but the Negligent Government also, in whole lazy arms it has bin nurs'd and cherish'd. Any Enormous Crime also, tho' but of a few, encourag'd by Impunity, is Chargeable on the Government, and becomes a Sin of the Nation. I proceed
3ly, To enquire when we may have sufficient reason to believe that God has forgiven a National Sin. We are not now speaking of those lesser Sins, which may be committed through frailty, errour, or inadvertency, and are pardon'd by a General repentance: but of those of a greater magnitude, which require a Particular and very Express repentance. And in judging when such a Sin is pardon'd, we are not to be guided by any length of time or number of years which may have pass'd since the Commission of it, but by the Truth and Sincerity of the Repentance for it; without which Sin must and will be punish'd, but God is not tyed up to a present execution, being certainly at liberty to take his own time. And there may be many reasons given why in most cases Judgment should not be poured out upon a Nation in hast, but delay'd for such a competent time as shall seem best to the Wisdom of God. He is concern'd in all Events in the World, which he disposes and brings about always for some wise ends and purposes. It is evident therefore that the most proper season for God's Vengeance on a Nation, is at that time when it may most appositely fall in with, and assist in the accomplishing some other Ends of Providence: and when this will be God Almighty only is the Judg. Besides, if punishments were so speedily inflicted on the Guilty, there would be no time given for repentance by which Gods wrath might be appeas'd, and his Judgments averted; God would loose the Glory of his long suffering and forbearance, and might seem of too Angry a Nature, whereas a Delay adds a luster even to the Brightest of Gods Attributes, his Goodness and Mercy; and seems to tell us that notwithstanding his hatred of Sin, yet he has a compassion for the Sinner, and cannot proceed to Afflict his Creatures without some Reluctance. To all this we may add, that those Delays which may seem long to us, are not so to that Eternal Being. Be not ignorant Beloved, says St. Peter, of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness, but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that Any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 2 St. Pet. 3. 8, 9.
The Judgment on the Jews for crucifying their Messiah was not the less to be expected for being deferr'd till most of those were probably in their Graves, who cry'd out, Crucify him, Crucify him: nor are they now ere the more pardon'd for the punishment they have already undergone, or the 1700 years which have almost pass'd since the Fact; because their Impenitence is of the same continuance: for 'tis not any tract of time, but Repentance only which can blot our Sins out of Gods Memory. We cannot therefore have any reason to believe God has forgiven a National Sin, 'till we have sufficient reason to believe the Nation has effectually Repented of it. And of this we must judg by the same rules as of our own Private Repentance; which we are sure is not sincere till the Amendment is evident. Now an Amendment do's not only imply an abstaining from the commission of That Sin any longer, but an hatred and detestation of it in our minds; an endeavour to get the mastery of those Appetites and Passions which formerly drew us into it, and an avoiding all those temptations and snares which may possibly lead us into a Relapse. When we are sensible of this Change in us, we may have an humble assurance that our Repentance is True, and our Sin pardon'd.
The Application of what has bin said concerning Private Repentance, to a Public National Repentance; will find its more proper place in the General Application of what has bin said, to the Melancholly occasion of this days Assembly: For which I now beg your patience.
By what has been said I humbly presume it has appear'd, that a Nation may be properly and truely guilty of Sin, as well as a Private Person, and consequently lyable to punishment; as also what it is which renders a Sin properly National; and when we may have just reason to believe that God has pardon'd it. By which on This Occasion we are naturally led to two things which, to a Soul truly Christian that has an awful fear of the Divine Majesty and a just Dread of his Wrath, will afford but very uncomfortable Meditations; I mean a view of our Sin and our Repentance.
Our Sin is of so New and Singular a Nature, so repugnant to the common sense of Mankind, and to the Laws of all Nations as well as those of God: that had Fame brought only the News of it from the most Remote and Barbarous corner of the Earth; it would have struck us with Astonishment and Horrour. Premeditated Murder is the highest pitch of wickedness, the most Consummate Villain is able to arrive at. He must have lost all remorse of Conscience, all sense of Good and Evil, either believe there is no God or else defy him, and be divested even of his Humanity too, before he can so much as even deliberate with himself about it. But in the case before us, this was not all; here was no Common man assassinated in Secret by the hand of some Audacious Villain, or Murder bought for a Sacrifice to private Revenge: but a King is the Person slain, and a Nation his Murderer. Royal Majesty is led forth in Public from his own Palace to the Scaffold, and his Sacred Head sever'd from his body, by the Infamous hands of an Executioner. And this done by the calm and deliberate Counsels, pursuant to a Sentence upon a long and formal Tryal, and at the Command of those men who by the Laws of God and their Country, and by their Oaths, ow'd him all Duty and Obedience; from whom his Piety and Virtues call'd for the highest degree of Respect and Honour, And his Fatherly Tenderness and Affection for his People did in Justice require Suitable Returns of move.
Here was a Sin in the highest degree National and Wilful, being the Solemn and Deliberate Ad of the Power which at that time Govern'd: so that no Nation could ever possibly be more truely and properly guilty of Sin than this was. But then if we consider the steps that led to it, and the necessary and unavoidable consequences of it, we shall find it attended with the highest aggravations: Treason and Rebellion led the way, and Ruine follow'd after. An Army was rais'd against him, but pretended to be rays'd by his Autority and for his Safety; thus did Rebellion indeed appear in a disguise, but such an one as made it more remarkably Impudent. And in order to strengthen their Arms, the Affections of his Subjects were to be Alienated from him; which his Goodness and Virtues made Impossible by any other means, than most malitious Calumnies and notorious Lyes. When his Reputation was thus murder'd first, and weaken'd and defenceless he fell into their hands, his Bloud was thought the Only Security for their Usurp'd Autority, and New-gain'd Possessions. But as yet even in this height of Wickedness these Parricides asham'd to own Themselves Rebels; for a pretence to take away His Life, and cover Their own Sin, with equal impudence and absurdity, turn'd the Treason upon their Ring, and for That try'd condemn'd and executed him. This fact could be attended with no less than the utter overthrow of our Ancient and Excellent Constitution: and accordingly in the room of the best Temper'd Monarchy there succeeded nothing but Anarchy and Confusion; the Nation Feverish and Distemper'd roll'd about from one form of Government to another, but could find rest in none. Thus also in the room of the most Primitive Church, arose up an infinite number of wild and extravagant Sectarys, all of them serving God severally in their own ways, I confess, but none of them in His. The Church was a perfect Babel, having as great a diversity of Opinions, as that had of Languages: which serv'd here no less to confound the common business, and frustrated all their endeavours to come at any firm Settlement either in Church or State, No; that was to be done only by the hand of God, who Alone can bring Order out of Confusion: and when he was pleas'd to bless us with a Settlement again, it is to be observ'd, that neither did his Wisdom direct, nor his Goodness move him, to give us any other than our Old one.
I know there are too many who look upon these things only as old and worn-out Storys, which the world has bin troubled with too long already, and ought now to be forgot; nor can I reflect without blushes on the Cold or Foreign discourses which of late Years have bin deliver'd on This Day from some of our own Pulpits, and before very August Assemblys. As if by some New Light the Errour of the Church and Parliament had been discover'd, who thought the Nation under Guilt by the bloud of their Lord and King; or else they had bin well assur'd an Act of Indempnity had pass'd in Heaven for it.
It were to be wish'd indeed, that it might be forgot both in Heaven and Earth; for the Honour as well as Prosperity of the Nation: but I fear it will not be safe for Us to forget it, 'till we are very sure GOD will remember it no more.
And the only ground for such an Assurance (as was observ'd) is a sincere Repentance; which is not to be estimated by any solemn shew of Devotion, unless accompany'd with Fruits meet for Repentance. If abstaining from the Act of a Sin might be sufficient to denominate us Penitents, it would be hard in this case not to be so; for This fact, as it was the First so. 'tis to be hop'd 'twill be the Last of the kind. But a true Penitent does not only forbear the Act, but has an hearty Abhorrence and Detestation of his Sin, suppresses the least degree of Approbation of it in his breast; flyes all Temptations that may lead him into it again, and endeavours to the utmost to subdue and conquer those Lusts and Passions which over-rul'd his Will in the committing it. These are of the very Essence of sincere Repentance in Private Persons, all Men will allow; and I know no difference between That, and the Public Repentance of a Nation. Not to Repeat the Sin, will not suffice; there must be a just Hatred of it, a fear of Gods Judgments, all necessary caution against it for the future; and to that end, all the Roots from whence it sprung are to be grubb'd up, and all the ways that led to it stopp'd; of which I know not how to give a better Instance than the Case before us will afford.
The Sin is the barbarous Murder of our King, accomplish'd by a most wicked and unnatural Rebellion: now Nobody will say this Kingdom has shew'd it self sufficiently Penitent by not murdering any of their Kings Since, but every body will Judg of it by the Signs and Tokens above-mention'd. If this Kingdom (for example) has an hearty Abhorrence and Detestation of that Sin for which we now mourn, If it Abominates all those Rebellious Principles that led to it; If by exemplary Punishments It expresses a Just Indignation against All who publickly Abet and Justify the Regicides, or by Impious Mock-Feasts on this Day ridicule the Piety of our Ancestors, and affront the Autority by which this Fast is enjoyn'd; If it discourages to its utmost the same Faction, and on no terms will Trust them with any of that Power which they once so wickedly Abus'd, If it gratefully returns Protection to those Laws which endeavour to defend our Constitution, and guards them against the Insults of men of Profligate Consciences, who by Hypocrisy at the Altar would climb up into power to pull down the Church; If all Illegal Seminarys of Schism and Sedition be discountenanc'd, and all the Caution that is possible be taken to sence against the Inveterate Malice, and all Lawful means us'd to weaken the Power of the Known and Profess'd Enemys of our Constitution: If all this (I say) be done, there is no doubt but our Public Repentance is Sincere. God will most certainly Accept our Prayers accompany'd with such True Sorrow and Amendment; and not only Forgive our Sin, but Bless us with the happy fruits of such a Return to our Duty. Our Councils will be steady and united, All Aiming at one Common End, the Public Good. All the causes of Division will be Rooted up; there will be no ground of Jealousy on One hand, because no room for Design on the Other: the Monarchy and the Church will be Undisturb'd; and Conscientious Dissenters Quiet, accountable only to God for their Separation. The Virtues of our Martyr'd Soveraign will Securely adorn the Crown in the Person of his Royal Grand-Daughter; and our Excellent Queen will long reJoyce in the Peace and Prosperity of her People at home, and abroad be a Support to her Allyes and a Terrour to her Enemies.
Now that we may be so Bless'd, and that we may know in this our Day the things which belong unto our Peace, before they are hid from our Eyes, God of his Infinite Mercy grant for the sake of our Blessed Redeemer, Jesus Christ our Lord: to whom with the Father and Holy Ghost, three Persons and One God, be all Honour and Glory, Might, Majesty and Dominion; for ever and ever. Amen.
BOOKS Printed for Sam. Smith and Benj. Walford, at the Prince's Arms in St. Paul's Church-yard.
DR. Lucas's Enquiry after Happiness, Vol. I, Of the True Notion of Human Life, Vol. II. Of Religious Perfection, Vol. III. In 8vo.
———— Twelve Sermons preach'd on several Occasions, before the Queen, Lord Mayor, &c. Vol. I. 8vo.
———— Twelve Sermons more, preach'd on several Occalions, never before publish'd, Vol. II. 8vo. 1702.
Bragg's Practical Observations upon the Miracles of our Blessed Saviour. In 8vo. 1702.
The Wisdom of God manifested in the Works of the Creation; in two Parrs, viz. the Heavenly Bodies, Elements, Meteors, Fossils, Vegetables, Animals, (Beasts, Birds, Fishes and Insects) more particularly in the Body of the Earth, its Figure, Motion and Consistency; and in the admirable Structure of the Bodies of Man, and other Animals; as also in their Generation, &c. with Answers to some Objects. By John Ray, Fellow of the Royal Society. The 3d Edition; in 8vo. 1701.
A Persuasive to an Holy Life, from the Happiness that attends it both in this World and in the World to come. Chap. 1. containing some Mistakes about the Objects of Happiness. 2. What Holiness is. 3. What Happiness is. 4 Of the Division of Happiness. 5. Of Health. 6. Of Safety, Liberty and Quiet. 7. Of Riches. 8. Of Pleasure, 9. Of Honour and Reputation. 10. Of Friends, 11. Of the Happiness of the Inward Man. 12. Of the Happiness of the Future State, or or Eternal Life. By John Ray, Fellow of the Royal Society, In 8vo. Price 1 s. 6 d.