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It is but just with God, that idle words be punished by suffering people to fall into lying words.

3. Remeinber that God will discover truth ; and that his eye is upon you at all times. And though ye may deceive others with your lies, ye cannot deceive the omniscicnt God. He is witness to the truth, and will call you to account for

your contra,

: dieting of it. And indeed the trade of lying is hard to keep up without discovery. Liars had need of good memories. A lying tongue is but for a moment, Prov. xii. 19.

Lasily, Curb lying in young ones, out of pity to their fouls, and care of their credit when they come to years. For some get such a habit of it when they are young, that there is no mending of them when they grow old.

Secondly, Beware of carrying an evil tongue. The lying tongue is contrary to truth, the evil tongue to charity and love to our neighbour, being employed in landering, backbiting, reproaching, reviling, scolding, &c. For motives,

Mot. I, Coolider the woful perverseness that is in an evil tongue. God gave man speech which he denied to other creatures, that by his tongue he might glorify God, and do good to himself and others, Plal, lvii. 2. 10. Shali we thus turn our glory into-liame, and pervert the ends of speech? How juft werc it that we were firuck dumb?

2. It is a murdering instrument, I observed to you before, that an ill tongue is a parcel of murdering weapons, a bow and hirp arrows to picrce, ad fword to slab, and a fire to devour others. Yca, Solomon obferves, that death and life are in the power of the tongue, It is a fire that kindles ftrite and contention in all focieties, and turns them into confufion; and oft.times returps licavily on the head of those who carry it. The tongues from heaven were cloven, to be the more diffutive of good; but chule fired from heil are forked, to be the more impresfive of mischief.

3. Conlider the wickedness of it. It is a world of iniquity, Jam. iii. 6. They have much ado that have an ill tongue to guide, a world of iniquity to guide. It is a broad stream from the fountain of the wickedness of the heart.

4. An unbridled tongue cuts off all pretences to true religion, Jam. i. 26. For where the fear or love of God and our neighbour is in the heart, it will be a bond on the tongue to keep it within the bounds of Christian charity.

5. We must give an account of our words at the day of judgement, Matth. xii. 36. 37.

Lastly, An ill tongue will ruin the soul. Bridle your tongues; however unruly they be, they shall be filent in the grave. And if repentance prevent it not, the day will come that they will be tormented in hell-flames, Luke xvi.

I shall conclude with an advice or two.

1. Begin at the heart, if ye would order your tongues aright. Labour to get them cleansed by the fančtifying Spirit of Christ. Study love to God and your neighbour, which are the fulfilling of the law. Labour for meekness, and patience, and humility, which will be the best directors of the tongue,

2. Set yourselves, in the faith of promised affift. ance, to watch over your hearts and tongues. Unwatchfulness is dangerous in the case of such an unruly member as the tongue is. God has guarded it naturally. Do ye also watch it *.

* Several particulars relating to speaking truth, and truth in the heart, and the evil of lying, &c. may be read with pleasure and profit, in the author's book, lately published, entitled, Distinguish, ing charakters of true believers, sermons on Pfal. xv. 2.

1

EXODUS XX. 17. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou halt

covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his man-fervant, nor his maid servant, nor his ox, nor his, ass, nor any

thing that is thy neighbour's, THE THE scope of this command is to strike at the

root and first risings of fin in the heart, in the desires going out of their right line of purity and equity. It is a strict boundary set to the unbounded desires of the heart.

In it there are, 1. The act. 2. The object. The act, Thou shalt not covet, or luft, as the apostle terms it, Rom, vii. 7. which implies an inordinateness of degre, a feverish motion of the soul towards the creature, irregular and disorderly; and fo a diffatisfaction with one's present condition, as appears from Heb. xiii. 5. Let your conversation be without covetousness, and be content with such things as ye have.

The object is held forth particularly for example's cause, thy neighbour's house, thy neighbour's wife, his servants, and goods. Thou shalt not only not take away thy neighbour's house from him by oppreffion, nor entice away his servants, nor steal his goods, nor entertain a lixed and deliberate defire to do him that injury, as is forbidden in the eighth command; but the inordinate defire of having them shall not rise in, nor go through thy heart, however lightly, if it were like a flying arrow, saying, O, that his house, his servant, his ox and ass were mine! Thou shalt not only not defile his wife, nor deliberately desire to do it, as is forbidden in the seventh commandment; but thou shalt not say in thinę heart, O that she were mine! though thou hast no mind, right or wrong, to make her so.

This ohject is held forth universally, nor any

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fired from heil are forked, to be the more impresfive of mischief. 3.

Confider the wickedness of it. It is a world of iniquity, Jam. iii. 6. They have much ado chat have an ill tongue to guide, a world of iniquity to guide. It is a broad stream from the fountain of the wickedness of the heart.

4. An unbridled tongue cuts off all pretences to true religion, 'Jam. i. 26. For where the fear or love of God and our neighbour is in the heart, it will be a bond on the tongue to keep it within the bounds of Christian charity.

5. We must give an account of our words at the day of judgement, Matth. xii. 36. 37.

Lally, An ill tongue will ruin the foul. Bridle your tongues; however unruly they be, they shall be filent in the grave. And if repentance prevent it not, the day will come that they will be tormented in hell-flames, Luke xvi.

I shall conclude with an advice or two.

1. Begin at the heart, if ye would order your tongues aright. Labour to get them cleansed by the fanctifying Spirit of Christ. Study love to God and your neighbour, which are the fulfilling of the law. Labour for meekness, and patience, and humility, which will be the bett directors of the tongue,

2. Set yourselves, in the faith of promised assist: ance, to watch over your hearts and tongues. Unwatchfulness is dangerous in the case of such an unruly member as the tongue is.. God has guarded it naturally. Do ye also watch it *.

* Several particulars relating to speaking truth, and truth in the heart, and the evil of lying, &c. may be read with pleasure and profit, in the author's book, lately published, entitled, Distinguisk ing characters of true believers, fermons on Psal. xv. 2.

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