« PreviousContinue »
of several callings, countries, diseases, doc. so the Papists are well nigh even with them in that. The
tvas the church then to be swallowed up? But God broke the plot, and ruined that beast too.
4. The Grecian beaft, the leopard, Dan. vii. 6. This beast had almost swallowed up the church under Antiochus EpiplaDes, who raised a moit dreadful persecution against the Jews, polluted the temple, forbade the public worship of God, and set up in the tempie the image of the Heathen Jupiter, and cruelly murdered many that would not comply with idolatry, Dan. xi. 31,-34. Yet they survived that beast.
5. The Roman beast, which is nameless, Dan, vii. 7. The scripture fpeaks of two Roman beasts, that were both heavy to the church.
1st, The great red dragon, Rev. xii. 3. that is, the Roman empire headed by the Pagan emperors, whom the devil ftirred up to perfecute the church for the first three hundred years. Horrible was the havock of Christians made under ten perfecuting Pagan emperors. So that it is reckoned there were as many Chriftians flain under them as that, if ye would suppose them at this butchering work for one year, there would be five thousand martyrs for every day of that year.
2dly, The beast with the name of blasphemy, Rev. xiii. i. that is, the Roman Christian or rather Antichriftian empire, headed by the Pope, the Popish kingdom, whereof the Pope is the head. All the rest are gone. This is che only remaining bealt that is threatening, at this day, the swallowing up of the church in these lands. But this beast, the Antichristian kingdom, is the common fink of all the evil qualities of the other beasts, Rev, xiii. 2. and has outdone thein all. So that eight hundred thousand are reckoned to have lost their lives in thirty years under this beast, which has lasted many hundreds of years. Yet multitudes in Britain aod Ireland at this day are doing what they can to run us into the paw of this bear, the mouth of this lion and dragon. But let us cry, O deliver not thv turtle-dove unto this beatt. We may fee that we are in fearful danger of it. The symptoms of it are,
(1.). The frightful appearance that Papists and Popery are making now in these lands. It is known that great numbers of Papists are come, and are still coming from abroad; that they are drawing together in an unusual manner ; that they are arming themselves, no doubt for some bloody design. The locusts spoke ef, Rev. ix. 3. aie swarming in the land, well
Pagans had their gods for the seamen, shepherds, husbandmen, &c. fo the Papists have St Nicholas for
known in the northern parts; and no doubt through all corners they are trafficking, though in disguise. They have dreadful success, perverting many, and mass is said publicly and avowedly in several parts. So that these twenty-five years fince K. James was on the throne, they have never so lifted up their heads as now.
(2.) The just fears there are of the pretender's getting into the throne, a Papist bred up in the maximns of Popery and French government, from whom nothing can be more expected than the ruin of the Protestant religion. To this Papists and malignant Jacobites are bending their united endeavours; and have so far ripened their accurfed project, that they are very confident of success.
(3.) The formidable power of France, from whence our enemies have their great encouragement. That cruel tyrant is by the late peace now at more leisure to enslave us, and landing an army for setting the pretender on the throne, to be a tool (in his hand) to ruin our liberties and our holy religion, as he has done at home with his own..
(4.) Many vile men are exalted to places of power and trust, enemies to the Protestant fucceffion, kcen for the Popith pretender, though they have abjured him, for no greater end than that they might thereby get into places to do him service and further his interest. What wonder then that the wicked walk on every fide, and that God's turtle be in hazard of being swallowed up by the Antichristian beast?
II. God may justly give up a sinful church and a finful peo, ple into the power of the multitude, of this beast. They have nothing to plead but free mercy, why they should not be fo given up, o deliver not the soul of thy turtle-dove unto the wild beaft. What has Britain and Ireland, what has Scotland to plead this day, why they should not be delivered into the
power of the wild beast that is gaping to suck their blood, and devour us? We may see we deserve it, if we consider,
1. The fins of the late times. These nations wer) fome time in a thriving condition, having proclaimed war against the beast, and married themselves to the Lord in a solemn covenant for reformation, to cast off and out all Antichristian corruption in doctrine, worship, aiscipline, and government, life and manners, to banith the false prophet and the unciean spirit out of them. But behold, by a heaven-daring Vol. II.
the seaman, St Wendolin for the shepherd, St Joha Baptift for the husbandman, St Magdalene for the
wickedness, the fame gèneration in the three kingdoms publicly renounce and break that covebant, and for the greater folemnity it is barnt, and of late the ashes of it were gathered by authority, and thrown into the river of the sinful union of Scotland and England. Is it any wonder that God is now rising up to pursue for the penalty, according to that threat. ening, Lev. xxvi. 25. I will bring a sword upon you, thit sball avenge the quarrel of my covenant? This is the head of God's controversy with the nations; this was the inler to other abominations : for that being done, the nations run back towards Antichrist again. Scotland takes back the horns of the beast, England and Ireland the horns and the attire of the whore. Profaneness breaks in like a flood ; the faithful are persecuted, opprefied, and murdered ; and most part of all ranks make fearful apoftafy and defection from the ways of truth.
2. The fins of the present times. We have entered our felves heirs to the guilt of former times, by not mourning ver the fame, by a woful slackness in not pursuing of reformation, and heartlessness and faintness in the cause of God. We have gone far to betray the covenanted work of reformation; and enemies want not ground to say, that they have bought the truth of many in the generation, who are not yet convinced they have sold it. If we look to,
(1.) A great many in our land, we will fee unordinary monitrous wickednefs, especially, though not only, among the nobility and gentry. Atheism and Deifm, I believe, have made greater advances in our day, than ever they did fince the Chritian religion was known in the world. All revealed Religion and the scriptures are ridiculed ; and they that have any fense of religion on their spirits, are reckoned to have been foundered in their education. Hence loose reins are given to all manner of profaneness and debauchery. Whoredom and adultery, and filthiness not to be named, have made unordinary advances, especially since the union was set on foot; for having drank of the cup of English filthiness, they have been made mad. If for thele things God have not a sacrifice of the best blood in Scotland and England, it will be strange.
(2.) To the body of the land, we will find them either pro. fane drunkards, fwearers, fabbath breakers, dishonest, or ig. norant, carnal worldlings that mind nothing but the world,
whore, as the Pagans had Flora. The family and country gods are a prodigious number, St Andrew
living in a voful neglect of all religion, from whose heart their own cafe and that of the church lies far off, flighting the precious offers of Christ, and not better.d by all the means of grace which they have been long living under.
(3.) To professors, we will see the provocation of fons and daughters increased to heaven. How have we left oui firit love ! where is the tenderness that sometime has seen ! A nerel deadness, formality, and lukewarmoefs has seized them. Carnality and worldly-mindedness has ate out the life of relia gion. À light, vain, and frothy Spirit has got in among them, pride and self-conceit prevail, ordinances are flighted, fermons and facraments created as things common and unclean, and a fiery divisive spirit, more frighted at the fins of others than their own, has disonoured God, and broken us.
(4.) Look where we will, guilt ftares us in the face. We have all finned. God has a controversy with magiftratęs, mis nisters, and people; for we have all gone back from the Lord, been unthankful for, and have miserably milimproved our privileges, and opportunities of advancing the Kingdom of Christ within us and without us. Let us then conclude, that God may juftly deliver us up' unto the multitude, the Antichriftian beast.
HI. If God give up his turtle unto the wild beast, the mul, titude of her enemies, it will be a dreadful upgiving. When God let his people fall into the hands of the old Babylonian beast, terrible was their case. And now the Antichriftian beast, to which the malignant party lend a helping hand, is going to devour us; and if God give us up into ibeir hand, it will be a dreadful upgiving. A Popish pretender mountirg the throne, a French army in our country, together with an army of British Papifts and malignants, muit needs be a thought of horror to us. It will be a dreadful upgiving: For then,
1. Religion is ruined. The Babylonian beaft will make fad pork of our holy religion, as Pial. lxxiv. 4.-8. King James was not well waim on the thione, till by his abfuiute power free liberty was given to Popish idolatry through the nations, But what can we expect in the case before us, but the overturning at fi! ft das all that we have had by the resolution, fea, and the extirpation of the dosihern hertly, as they call it We must in that case lay cur account with tlie Glencing of mie for Scotland, St George for England, St Patrick for Ireland, St Denys for France, St James for Spain,
nisters, filent fabbaths, and closed church-doors, till they be opened again for the mass, or at least for the English fervice; which yet will be but an expedtent for a time to prepare us for Popery.
2. Liberty and property is ruined. We must lay our account with French government. Our all must be at the disposal of our arbitrary prince, whose will must be our law, to use us and what is ours according to his pleasure. We must no longer look for the liberty of free-born subjects, but mult be content to be flaves; and our laws may be burnt, for all law then must be locked up in the breast of the prince. And the doctrine of passive obedience and non-resistance, that en flaving notion, níust be quietly learned.
3. Ourselves and our families are ruined in our fouls and bodies, or both. We must lay our account to feel the teeth, of the Babylonian beast, to swim in blood to glue the Scarletcoloured whore, already drunk with the blood of the fainis. The Papifts are a bloody generation, and we may expect to fee our land filled with blood and desolation, if the Lond.deliver us into the hand of the wild beast. Let us look about us, and take notice of their cruelties exercised
the churches of Christ,'to awaken us to a fenfe of our danger from that bloody generation.
In the valley of Piedmont they raised a most barbarous persecution against the church, where fimple death would have been a great kindnets. But fome were flayed alive, and some buried alive; the mouths of some were filled with gun-powder, and then fired. They beat out the brains of fome, then fried and eat them. They ript up women, fixed them on spits, roasted them, and ate their breasts, Maids were carried by the foldiers with spits ftuck up through them, In: fants were taken out of their cradles, and torn to pieces. VI am not speaking, my brethren, of devils, but of Papists.. 6
In Calabria they drave them out of their houses to the woods and mountains. The aged and children that could not flee, they murdered by the way, pursuing the rest like wild beasts. Those that could recover the mountains," being on ihe top of rocks, befought their enemies to let them but out of ihe country, and they would leave them their towns and eftates.' But the barbarian Papiits would not hearken, but stiil cried, Kill, ķill. Eighty had their throats cut, and then