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SERMi ever wholly confined his Love and tender ReXXII. gards, or pathetic Wishes of Happiness, to the m Jewish Nation ; tho' he selected them out of

the whole Earth, as his own People, for the good Purposes of his Providence. His remarkable Punishment of the Jewish Nation, when their Behaviour called for it; and, at last, ruining their whole Polity, and the Fabric of their Commonwealth; and his waiting upon other Nations, to see whether they would repent or not; and his deferring their Destruction 'till they were paft all Hopes : These Particulars, recorded of old, of His Methods of dealing with Nations, may assure us, that He has the same tender Desire of the Welfare of All Nations, which He had for That of the Fews; and that He is as truly concerned for the Happiness of other Nations, as ever he was for Those whom He called His own People. He is the Creator of all Men, and the great Governour of all Nations. All have a Title to his Providence, and fatherly Care; and All must be dear in his Eyes, 'till they have made themselves otherwise. It appears from the Sacred History, That, if Abraham and his Family had been as impious, and as corrupted, as the other Families and Nations of the Earth, God would not have chosen Him, and his Posterity, out of all the World,

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as his peculiar People. And that, by this Choice, S ERM.
He did not mean to signify his exempting that XXII
People from the general Rule of his Favour
and Displeasure, towards all. Nations, is most
evident from his totally forsaking Them, and
destroying even their Appearance, as a Nation,
for the very fame Reasons, for which He had
heretofore cast out and destroyed other Nations,
for their Sake: viz. because their Iniquities were
full.

This, therefore, must be a mighty Satisfac-
tion, that, whereas the Lords and Tyrants of
this Earth often take a Delight in overturning,
and confounding Families, and States, and
Kingdoms; when their Projects require it,
there fits a God on high, able and wife, to over-
rule their Power and Cunning; who delights
not in Destruction and Desolation ; whose Al-
mighty Power is chiefly displayed in thewing
Mercy; and whose Delight it is to do Good to
the Children of Men. And, well might the
Pfalmift, upon Confideration of this, cry out,

boastest thou thyself thou Tyrant, that thox
can do Mischief? whereas the Goodness of God
endureth get daily; i. e. How can you,
rants of this World, pride yourselves in that
Misery and Ruine which you can scatter around
you;
when

Why

you have the Example of God before your Eyes, who is infinitely exalted above

you,

the Ty

SERM. you, and cloathed with infinite Degrees of XXII. Power more than you are acquainted with : W And yet, bis Goodness endureth daily; and yet

He delights, not in destroying but, in saving; not in striking Terror upon the Nations of the Earth, but in showring down his Bleffings upon them? Did the proud, and ambitious, and infatiable Lords of this Earth but consider this; what a stop must it put to all the Madnesses of their Power, here below? How few Scenes of Blood and Defolation? how few Countries depopulated and laid waste ? how few Barbarities exercised ? how few Families banished and extirpated ? how few Towns laid in Ashes? and how few Instances of any thing like Violence, or Brutality, should we see or hear of ? But, because this lovely Pattern of the most high God, and fupreme Governour of the World, is not regarded; but Ambition, and an unbounded Love of all the Tokens of Pow. er, reign in the Hearts of many of the Rulers here below; therefore it is, that we have heard and feen so frequently the Characters of Inhumanity in the World, and Rivers of Blood fhed, and Thousands of Lives sacrificed, to the Will and Humour of one Man ; therefore it is, that we fee Engines of Destruction invented and improved; all the Arts of Dislimulation to inveigle and cheat, and of Ruine and Violence to destroy, more studied, and in more s ERM. Repute, than the Arts of Peace, and the whole

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XXII. Band of Social Virtues. But these Methods are not learnt from that great Governour of Heaven and Earth, who ought to be the great Pattern of the Mighty. For He is never represented to us to be more delighted, than when the Rules of his Government permit him to fhower down his Blessings; and never more grieved, or acting with more Reluctånce, than when He is constrained, as it were, by the fame just Rules of Government, tö pour his Wrath upon any People, or Nation." But,

II. We may and ought to observe, that Almighty God doth not so wish and desire the Prosperity of Nations, but that there are Conditions to be performed on their Part, without which he will not save them from Destructi

For Instance, It is absolutely necessary that they call up all their own Prudence, and enter into the best Counsels they can procure; that they take all Opportunities, and make use of all the most probable Methods, of preventing their own Destruction, by applying Wisdom against Wisdom, Force against Force, and using the honest Arts of this World, under the Conduct and Blessing of God. They must not forget to implore the favourable Eye and

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Serm. kind Providence of that God, who fits over

XXII. all ; and can dispose the Fate of Kingdoms and m Nations

Nations; and they must, at the same time, make use of the Afstances, He has put into their Hạnds, by his good Providence; remem-. bring that He will not alone work Miracles for them, whilst They stand still and will do nothing for themselves. To this Purpose I cannot forbear to call to mind that, in that Storm, in which St. Paul was shipwrecked (Axts xxvii.) tho' an Angel of God had assured him that there should be no Loss of any Man's Life amongst them; yet, when the Ship-men were going to flee out of the Ship, Paul said to the Centurion, except these abide on the Ship, ye cannot be saved. So fenfible was He, that when God promises to save any Persons, either their Lives or Estates, He never means to exclude their own Endeavours; but always requires the fame Efforts and Behaviour from Them, as if they were to be saved wholly' by their own Pawer and Wisdom.

And as one Part of that Wifdom which God requires of a Nation, in order to their Happinefs, is to use all their own Endeavours against the Designs of their Common Enemy; all that Strength of Mind, and force of Arms, with which They are blefied; so, anciker Part of it is, to be united amongst themselves; to bury all in

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