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tion-day ; that combines causal-virtue with vital in private animal-life, and legislative with executive in publick: as in the three judicial-lyftems of statute-law, common-law, and equity or law of nature and nations, in so many courts of justice, in the vulgar tongue, on the 6th creation-day, consummated by Christlike union with the laws of God scriptural (commonly understood) in the 7th step now to follow by sentence of this Lord from heaven tri-uniting moral, causal, vital virrue in private life-animal, and legal, legislative, executive in public. Gen. i.-24–31. I Cor. xv. 47].
40. A r whose coming, all men shall rise again with their bodies [into systematic life]: and shall give account for their own works [by habits visible to all, now confirm'd and unalterable7.
41. And they that have done good [by acquiring virtuous Godlike habits], shall go into life-everlasting [or Axwveel as free-men and fons; sabbatically, on the 7th endless day or perpetual noon of this regenerationweek] : and they that have done evil [by acquiring evil habits], into everlasting Ajaial] fire [of coercion, as slaves irreclaimable. For now the door is shut; and the system compleated, by the tri-union of loyal, legislative, and executive virtue in political-life; as of moral, causal, and vital in private-life).
42. This is the catholick faith (or universal rule of the christian life]: which except a man believe faithfully (as the rule of his practice, to enlighten his paths and guide nis steps in his spiritual walkings), he cannot be saved (from everlasting misery]. · III, HAVING thus declared the attributes of God and Christ, that render them supremely worthy of the highest praises and adorations of all mankind : I fhill. now proceed to enumerate, under the 3d. head of this discourse, some of those numberless mercies and acts of divine goodness to these nations, that loudly call for the highest strains of praise and i hanksgiving to God and Christ our King. And as it is impossible, to bring within the compass of a short discourse the many liga C 2
nal mercies and deliverances and unmerited favours receiv'd at the bounteous hand of divine-providence, by these nations. We must be contented with reciting the chief of them; and that as briefly as may be. →
If we look back to the times of darkness and confu. sion before the reformation : how dismal is the scene of ignorance and servitude to antichristian tyranny in mat, ters of religion ? and of intestine commotions and statefeavers always accompanied with great shedding of blood; in a constitution then not truly ballanced, but eagerly desirous of liberty and to transmit it to po: terity ? . The example of ecclesiastic tyranny in an apofta. tiz'd church (that was believed to have the keys of heaven and everlasting-life and infallibility), gave a colourable pretence and sanction to the like exercise of dominion in such civil governments as submitted to the papal yoak and borrowed their form of life and political support from it. But the spirit of liberty, lo natural to the fons of Japhet, and imported into the Roman-empire broken and divided among the ten governments founded by the northren descendents of Japhet; could never be totally extinguish'd in Bri. tain, tho' often greatly distress'd : and at last, after a Thort, but severe tryal under the persecutions of queen Mary's reign, it raised its hend above the power of its enemies, in the reign of queen Elizabeth, by a happy union of church and state in a national parliamentary establishment of a truly christian free government both in church and state ; not only reforming from the er: rors of Rome in religion, but rejecting allo, in the exercise of dominion, the anti-christian cyranny of her form of government both civil and ecclefiaftic.
HOWEVER happy this new-born reformation-uni. on of church and state, upon a scriptural and genuine christian foundation, was during the reign of queen Elizabeth; it was not firmly enough establish'd, io efcape the snares of Rome in the next following reign. When Rome could no longer prevail by open, vio
ence : The first attempted to destroy the religious and civil liberties of England by cutting off, at one secret blow, the King and both houses of Parliament, after many fruitless. plots in the foregoing reign of queen Elizabeth. This most execrable plot, commonly known by the name of Gun-powder treason, being prevented by a vigilant and benign over-ruling providence: the devouring dragon changed his form into that of a subcil insinuating serpent, and sow'd the seeds of division between the government and subjects of the strongest and best secur'd național establishment upon earth. An establishment of a truly christian church and well-order'd civil-liberty fitly bounding the rights of every member of the community by laws, to which he was either born a subject or assented him
self or by his representative in parliament. The then · reigning prince was seduced by flatterers (probably
fet on or encouraged by emissaries of Rome, as is well known to have been the case in the next following reign), to aspire after absolute-dominion independent of parliaments : and the people grew jealous of the crown, and by degrees withdrew their affections from it : insomuch that about the 18th year of that reign, the two parties for and against governing by parliaments, came to a head and introduc'd themselves into the parliament of 1620, from which time a judicious historian dates the rise and progress of our present wellballanced constitution and happy establishment: for the errors of that reign gave birth to the following strug, gle that ended in the dissolution of the constitution, the murder of the King by an usurping faction, new forms of government, all of them oppreffive to the subject and destructive of religiousand civil liberty. So that being experimentially convinced of the goodness of their old parliamentary constirurion in a limited monarchy, above all the other forms they had tried : the nation fighed for a restoration of it. Divine providence heard them, and pilying their distress, granted their request
by the restitution of the King and Royal family and the restoration of the government, after many years interruption, in the year 1660. This was follow'd by such mutual caresses between King and People in Parliament assembled; that the Popish party began to form new schemes of disturbing the new happy settlement, lest time should cement it too firmly for them ever to overturn. Hence proceeded the rigors of that reign against protestant Diffenters ; to make them favour a general toleration, and the Pretensions of the Crown to a power of dispensing with the laws, when matters should be ripe for the projected establishment of Popery and an absolute government. They founded their hopes on the King's only brother being a papist, and his great interest with the King, and the prospect of his succeeding to the crown. Upon the accession of this prince (i, e. King James the 2d.) to the throne ; they had well nigh destroy'd our constitution : had not divine providence again interposed in the wonderful and glorious accomplishment of the Revolution happily effected by King William the 3d. never to be forgotten (as being the happy instrument of divine providence in working this great deliverance.) To him also, under God, we owe the prudent provision for the perpetuicy of our constitution, by limiting the succession to the crown to the protestant line and guarding against all future attempts to destroy our liberties religious or civil. The happy accession of the present royal family to the throne, without any confusions, at a time when the popish party and the friends of a popish Pretender had again rais'd a spirit of Jacobitism into power, is the next great event now to be remember'd with the highelt gratitude to divine providence. . The more a constitution is advanced in its progress to perfection; the more harmful and wicked is any attempt to destroy it; and the greater blessing is the de. liverance from such attempt or the rendering it fruitless. As the preservation of a man is of greater mo
ment, than that of a child. Thus; the restoration was a more important blessing, than the deliverance from the preceeding plots; but yielded in value to that of the Revolution, under divine-providence atchieved by our glorious deliverer King William; as that, to the Protestant succession taking place in 1714. And this last great deliverance (we are this day to commemorate) from the late unnatural rebellion against a mild, and truly paternal administration and the best of constitutions, in being so happily accomplish'd by the vigilant and wise conduct of a brave young prince, at an age when others are devoted to the pleasures of youch or little acquainted with military skill, exceeds them all, not only in that respect, but also in being a sure pledge of the continuance of God's protection for the perpetuating our present happy establishment by watching over our princes in the day of battle and præliding in their councils, that both in the field and cabinet all may be directed for the glory of God and good of these naaions.
IV. I SHOULD Now proceed to shew, by whar steps our excellent constitution has attain'd to its present perfection, and in what that perfection consists. But I take it for granted, you have prevented me; by observe ing the resemblance between our parliamentary constitution and that of the christian-church (wherein the offices of bishops, priests or presbyters, and deacons respectively answer to those of king, lords, and commons in our parliamentary constitution). This was the constitution of the original christian church; having Christ himself for bishop, the twelve apostles for presbyters, and the seventy disciples for deacons. After Chrift's ascension; the apoitles became bishops by Christ's appointment and the descent of the Holyghost at Pentecost : and the seven deacons were conftiruced in the mother-church at Jerusalem, by laying on of the apostles hands, in place of the seventy disciples, who were probably constituted elders, i. e. presbyters by the apostles; for we read of elders with the apostles at Jerusalem in the first council. For a