fhall pafs his Sentence according to the Good Men have done, or neglected to do in this Life.

Nay, every way fo great is the Reward of doing good, that even wicked Men, who yet have been of bountiful Tempers, and have had generous Spirits, fhall fare the better in the other World for thofe good Acts of Mercy and Charity they have done here: and in this fenfe it is faid (with which I end all) that Charity doth cover a multitude of Sins; and to cover Sins, in the Scripture-Phrase, is to forgive them.

Now of this Saying there are several Senses given, which I cannot stand now to recite ; but the words are true in these two Senses.

(1.) If he that is thus truly charitable, and hath done a great deal of Good in his Generation, be alfo endued with the other Virtues and Qualifications required in a Christian then, tho he may have a great many Infirmities and Miscarriages to anfwer for, yet these Failings fhall be overlooked and buried in his. good Deeds and then they mean the fame with that of the Pfalmift, With the merciful, God will fhew himself merciful; he will thew him all Favour poffible.

(2.) Or elfe, fecondly, if you understand thefe Words, Charity fhall cover a multitude of Sins, as fpoken of a Perfon, who tho vicious in all other refpects, yet out of Principles of common Humanity, or natural Goodness of Temper, or Greatness of Spirit,

is very apt and inclined to do generous and great things for the good of the World (which is a cafe that may fometimes happen) they mean this, that tho Charity alone will not be fufficient to make fuch an one happy in the other World, because he is otherwise incapable of it; yet it fhall be confidered fo far as to leffen his Punishment. He fhall be in a lefs intolerable Condition (tho that be fad enough) than the cruel and uncharitable, or than they who have delighted in doing Mischief.





Preach'd at



1 COR. XI. 29.

For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh Damnation to himself, not difcerning the Lord's Body.


HE Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, which we are now to receive, is undoubtedly the most folemn and venerable part of Chriftian Worship; a most excellent Inftrument of Religion, an Inftitution of our Saviour's of mighty use and advantage to us, if we duly partake thereof: and yet there is hardly any part of Religion fo little or fo ill understood by the generality of


Christians amongst us, as this Duty; which fufficiently appears from that great number of those who constantly join with the Church in all other publick Offices of Divine Worship, and yet wholly neglect the receiving of this Sacrament; or at least communicate fo feldom, as if they looked upon themselves at liberty to do it, or not to do it, as they thought beft. I fpeak not now of the profane Contemners of God and Religion, who despise this as they do all the other Duties of God's Worship; but of those who pretend to the Fear of God, and Care of their Souls, and yet live at ease in the grofs Omission of this Duty.

Now among the many Pleas or Excuses with which Men fatisfy themselves in the neglect or disuse of this holy Communion, that which most generally prevails, and perhaps with some honeft and well-meaning Persons, is the confideration of the words of my Text; He that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh Damnation to himself. So dreadful is the Threatning and Punishment here denounced against those who receive this Sacrament unworthily, that Men are apt to think it much the fafer and wifer courfe, never to venture or a Duty, the wrong performance of which is attended with fo great Mif chief. Damnation is fo terrible a word, and to be guilty of the Body and Blood of Chrift (as it is faid, ver. 27. Whosoever shall eat this Bread and drink this Cup of the Lord


unworthily, fhall be guilty of the Body and Blood of the Lord) is fo heinous a Crime, that it may seem the most prudent courfe for a Man to keep himself at the greatest distance from all poffibility of falling into it. Better never receive at all, than expose one's felf to fo great a hazard by receiving.

I hope therefore it will not be thought altogether unprofitable to entertain you at this time with a Discourse on these words; wherein I shall endeavour to give you the full meaning of them, with the true and just Inferences and Confequences that may be drawn from them. In order to which I fhall fhew you,

I. What is meant here by Damnation.

II. What by eating and drinking unwortily.

III. How far this Text may reasonably fcare and fright People from this Sacrament.

IV. What is the true Confequence from what is here affirmed by the Apoffle; He that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh Damnation to himself.

I. What is meant here by eating and drinking Damnation to a Man's felf. The Original Word, which is here tranflated Damnation, truly fignifies no more than Judgment or Punishment in general, of what kind foever it be,

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