« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
the second ; and lawfullo Preachingthe very first.
But here it ought to bee considered, That Preaching is not only That, which in these innovating times hath swallowed up the word Preaching. Nor are Sermons only those which spend themselves and expire with the fugitive breath of him that speaks them; and being publiquely uttered no more then once, doe either vanish, as meere words, into the soft Aire; or else are, as water commonly spilt upon the Ground. We know that
Preaching is a generall word, which properly fig. & Lok. 8. 39. niftes to divulge orf publish; And though wet.fi.
ally restraine it to the manifestation of God's owne word, yet That may also be Preached more wayes than one. The Catechizing of Neophytes in the purest Ages of the Church, may bee Wortbily called one kinde of Preaching, although they were not admitted to any higher degree
of Teaching than to the very first Rudiments and Grounds of Faith. It was said by Justin Martyr, in bis Parænesis to
the Græcians, that even in some of their owne Den har writings the very Judgement to come was Preachneurshid med to them; and particularly in Plato's, thes Reer contain a furrection of the Body. The fame Father tells
us that Orpheus preached to his fonne Musæus, concerning the unity of the only true God. The
publique Homilies of the Church are an exa& 10 kinde of Preaching, and that in the judgement of CJ Master Hooker, as well as of King James, and Base price in the Councell of Vaux. The holy-Ghost's Amanuenses did even Preach to the Eyes and Under
Mart. Maραίν. αρδς Ελ. alwp.20.21.32
ibid. p. 13:
k Hooker Eccl. Polit. I. 5.9.9.
II. 12. 13.
18. 19. 27,
ftandings of all the World, by transmitting what
Nom the Reason of this is very evident, and deserves to be considered by that sort of Hearers, who are wont to preferre the words of men, when gracefully spoken out of the Pulpit, before the plaine word of God, when meerely read out of the Pew,
not at all considering, That the Sun of Righteouf
that doth alone doe the work for the Spirit of God did goe along with the Apostles when they were cast out of the Cities, and along with our Sa
viour in the fulneffe of his God-head,when yet be * oca nosivalo could not doe many Miracles in his own Coundivator rohit 'trev meerly because of their unbeliefe) but 'tis his
working a docility in the heads and hearts of such as un gran hear, that they receive with meeknesse the ingraf en live deri tanited Pword, which is alone able to save theirSouls.
This doth open to us a reason why the very fame manu-vincire
, Sermon bath such variety of effects in them that
hear it, and why a Jonah may preach to the melt??am. 1.1. ing of fome, whileft a Jeremy may doe it to the
hardning of others. If weegoe to Chrifts Schole • Mar. 10. as * little-Children (that is) with humble, atten
tive, and teachable Dispositions, wee shall be great proficients and wife enough unto salvation, by bearing those Sermons
diftin&tly read, which our * only Mafter G bis Messengers are incessantly preach ing throughout the Scriptures ; whereas without thác
Mar. 6. .
homines in credulos do ingratos quafi Deo
ne ipfis opem feras. Theod. Beve in locum.
* I Cor.7.23
temper and preparednesse of minde, we shall (in utramq; aurem dormiré) only sleepe with our Eyes open, and where Gods owne word, through our wretchlesnelse, is not sufficient to awake us from that Lethargie of fin wherein our Soules lye steept, and swallowed up. Certainly nothing that is hus mane will raise us out of our seniselesnefse and carnall security ; All the vehemence and Invention, allthe noyles and Declamations, all the Grimaces and gestures of all the Lectares in the world will but amuse our Eares, and lull our Fancies, and be num our Apprehensions, and (like so much Ladanum)make us snore in our sins so much the lowder. I was by the foolishneffe of God (to use the 91 Cor.1.25 Apostles Catachresis) and by the foolishnesse of $ 21, which preaching (as the worldly-wise then thought it) verf. 18. by which it pleased God to save them that be leeve, that is to say, by the plainnefse and fimplicicy of the Gospell
, without the artifice and colours of skilfull men, the world was carned upfide downe, as the envious ? Jewes were pleased to : 126.96.36.199 phrase it. By that word, and that spirit which the learned Greeks so much despised, Saint Peter preached to the conversion of three thousand Souls A&t. 2. 41 at one fhort Sermon, and of five thoufand at a- - Afl. 4.4. nother.
Far be this which I have spoken from being spoken to the disparagement of those judicious and pious Sermons, which have beene ulefully preached by a blemen. Had I not beené a true lover of all good preaching, and even of all such Lectures, as were
regularly founded and authorised, not to factious but pious ends, I should not nom bave gratified the importunity of friends (however many and urgent on this occasion) by helping to usher into the world,
and by commending to the perusall of every Reader, who can bee glad to grow wiser then now beis) The very learned, wise and sacred Reliques of this Great Author who lies before us. Lam not non to
be taught, That though the best way to knowledge, is • Job. 5. 39. to search the Scriptures, as those that teftifie of him ". Job 6.68. who hath the words of weternal life, and that as faith
çõmeth by hearing, so hearing commeth by the word * Rom.10.17 of God (not by tbe glofies, or conjectures,or dex
terities of men) yet there are many Kounoz pretious and hidden treasures of knowledge which God was
pleased to lock up in Tropes and Figures, of which Y 2 Pet.3.26 the unstable and the unlearned are not entrusted • Luk 11.52 with the Key. The Priests · lipps should keep
knowledge, and they should seek the Law at his ** Appano, mouth, as being the * Angell or Messenger of the
Lord of Hosts, and the Steward of those Myste
ries which God hath committed to bis keeping. The * A&. 8.27. famous Eunuch of Ethiopia was able to read the
Prophet Esay, and had so good an understanding as to discern how little he understood it, and there
fore Si Philip was joyned to him for his Guide, d 2 Por:3.16 There were some "hard things in S Pauls Epistles,
which many did wrest to their own destruction, of which S Peter doth give us no other reason, then
their want of learning, as well as of stability. Those Ifa.55. 1. waters of life are not every where fordable, no not
a Mal, 2.7