« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
out of any Pique at it, after fo Long and Easy Enjoyment as I have had of it; Enough to cure me, for ever seeking any greater Matters in it. Tet fo eafily can I fee thro' all, even its moft Promifing Fruitions, as to be fully fatisfy'd, There's no Satisfaction for the Soul of Man ever to be found in 'em: And that to have . more in our Hands, is but to have the more Cumber and Danger; and not find our felves a jot the Eafier, or the Happier. So that 'tis only in the hour of Temptation, that we can count it fo Good to be here, as not to care for the Thoughts of Moving bence.
And upon this account, I must profess my felf Beholden even to the Enemy of my Religion, for telling me more here in this Difcourfe, than all the rest of my Books (one excepted,) do difcover: To Jet off the Joy of Salvation in fuch a noble Ouranography, and intelligent Exprefs from the Heavenly Countrey, Such a fine Chart and Plan of the Glorious City, That I know not who has gone fuch Lengths, or defcended to fuch CircumStances, or Criticiz'd on fo many Particulars,
culars, Lying out of the way of common Notice. And tho the Argumentation may, bere and there, carry fome Tincture of Imagination, yet will I count it a happy Fancy that pleafes me into my Duty. "ESpecially, When holy Scripture it felf does thus ftoop to our Low Capacity; and in the prefent State of Imperfection and Obfcurity, where we see and know so very little of any thing, and still Lefs of what's Heavenly,) in its native Truth and reality; We must be content with fuch figurative Schemes, and Analogical Reprefentations, as give us the most Lively affecting Ideas, that we can now tell how to frame in our minds; Tho they fall exceeding short still of the things themselves; and Leave us to make Quarles's Apology,
Excuse my bold Attempt, and pardon me
Now, my Lord, The fame do I fincerely wifh and Pray for your Honour, as for my felf; That we may not only walk fuch Higher Grounds of Contemplation, for
our Diverfion; and get up to the Top of this Mount Pifgah, barely to take a fine Profpect of Canaan, and entertain our Fancy in Surveying the Promised Land our better Countrey But may pursue the right and fure Way, to bring us into the happiest Fruition of that most Glorious Indefeasible Poffeffion. And if I can but contribute any thing at all to fuch an extremely Defirable End, 'Twill be the only Means in my Power of Difcharging the great Debt that is owing to my Lord,
IS a new fort of Undertaking, in which I am now engaging: Where Should I make fuch a Wish as the Apoftle did, I Cor. 11. 1. To be born with, for that which he call'd his Folly; I might expect the Petition to meet with nothing but Derifion; from fome, that will blame the Acrimony, and fome, perhaps, the Flattery of my Style: while others may cenfure the whole of my Managing, but for a fort of Trimming. Yet I am in small care for Anfwers to any fuch Objectors.
But to them that Ask, What? Shall we Search a Dunghil for Pearls? Go to Rome and learn Devotion at the fink of Superftition? Take the Champion of Antichrist, for the Tutor of Chriftians, and expect Belzebub to caft out Devils? I reply, 'Tis wonderful indeed, for a Corrupt Tree to bring forth good
Fruit: Yet, if the Father of Lyes do ever Speak Truth, Then give him his due; and do not reject God's holy Word, because it comes out of the forry Balaam's Mouth: Nor ferve the Babylonians as they have done the Hereticks, To paint 'em out (among their credulous Creatures) for fuch Monsters as ba'nt fo much as Human Shape.
In those Practical matters of Morality and Piety, where's a general Agreement among all forts of Chriftians, even the widest Diffenters may shake hands together: And they that are elsewhere never fo much Out, yet here, may be in the Right. Yea, the greater Wits, when they bend their Forces Heavenward, may do the bigger Service; To Build up, what otherwife they do but Demolish. And fo, This Small Tract, together with that of the Mind's Afcent to GOD, which the acute Author favour'd as bis Benjamin, the child not only of his old Age, but of his right Hand, and counted it (with Reafon enough,) more useful than all bis former works, may prove fome Antidote against the Poyfon of the rest; as much to Help, as thofe to Hurt.
Especially, if we obferve, ( what he intimates,) where it was penn'd. For it feems, 'Twas not in Babylon, that he had the Vifions of Zion: Not in the great City, Mother of Harlots and Abominations, where her fer