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For can we think those Bodies well prepared for a glorious Resurrection, to be refined into spiritual Bodies, which are become ten times more Fleih than God made them, which are the Instruments and the Tempters to all Impurity ? Is there any Reason to expect that such a Body should rise again spiritual and glorious, which expires in the Flames of Luft, which falls a Sacrifice in the Quarrel of a Strumpet, which sinks under the Load of its own Exceffes, and eats and drinks itself into the Grave; which scorns to die by Adam's Sin, but will die by its own, without expecting till the Laws of Mortality, according to the ordinary Course of Nature, must take Place?

Holiness is the only Principle of Immortality both to Soul and Body: Those love their Bodies best, those honour them most, who make them Instruments of Virtue ; who endeavour to refine and spiritualize them, and leave nothing of fleshly Appetites and Inclinations in them : those are kindest to their Bodies who consecrate them for Immortality, who take care they shali rise again into the Partnership of eternal Joys: All the Severities of Mortification, Abstinence from bodily Pleasures, Watchings, Fastings, hard Lodging, when they are Instruments of a real Virtue, not the Arts of Superstition, when they are intended to subdue our Lufts, not to purchase a Liberty of sinning, are the most real Expressions of Honour and Respect to these Bodies. It shews how unwilling we are to part with them, or to have them miserable, how defirous we are of their Advancement into eternal Glories : For the less of Flesh they carry to the Grave with them, the more glorious will they rife again. This is offering up our Bodies a living Sacriface, when we entirely devote them to the Service


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of God; and such living Sacrifices shall live for ever ; for if God receives them a living Sacrifice, he will preserve them to immortal Life.

But the highest Honour we can do these Bodies, and noblest Use we can put them to, is to offer them up in a proper Sense, a Sacrifice to God, that is, willingly and chearfully to die for God when he calls us to Suffering : First to offer up our Şouls to God in the pure Flames of Love and Devotion, and then freely to give up our Bodies to the Stake or to the Gibbet, to wild Beasts, or more • savage Men. This vindicates our Bodies from the natural Shame and Reproach of Death; what we call a natural Death is very inglorious, it is a Mark of Dishonour, because it is a Punishment of Sin: Such Bodies at best are sown in Dishonour and Corruption, as St. Paul speaks; but to die a Martyr, to fall a Sacrifice to God, this is a glorious Death this is not to yield to the Laws of Mortality, to Necessity and Fate, but to give back our Bodies to God, who gave them to us, and he will keep that which we have committed to his Trust, to a glorious Resurrection ; and it will be a surprizing and astonishing Glory with which such Bodies shall rise again, as have suffered for their Lord; for if we fuffer with him, we shall also be glorified together : Which seems to imply, that those shall nearest resemble the Glory of Christ himself, who suffer as he did.

This is the way to make our Bodies immortal and glorious. We cannot keep them long here, they are corruptible Bodies, and will tumble into Dust; we must part with them for a while, and if ever we expect and desire a happy Meeting again, we must use then with Modesty and Reverence now. We dishonour our Bodies in this World, when we

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make them Instruments of Wickedness and Luft, lay an eternal Foundation of Shame and Infamy for them in the next World ; it is a mortal and killing Love, to cherish the fleshly Principle, to make Provision for the Flesh to fulfil the Lufts thereof: But if you love your Bodies, make them immortal, that though they die, they may rise again out of their Graves with a youthful Vigour and Beauty; that they may live for ever without Pain and Sickness, without the Decays of Age, or the Interruptions of Sleep, or the Fatigue or Weariness of Labour ; without wanting either Food or Raiment, without the least Remains of Corruption, without knowing what it is to tempt, or to be tempted, without the leaft uneasy Thought, the least Disappointment, the least Care, in the full and blissful En. joyment of the Eternal and Sovereign Good.

SECT. III. Death considered as our Entrance upon a neve

and unknown State of Life. III. LET us now consider Death as it is an En

trance upon a new and unknown State of Life; for it is a' new Thing to us to live without these Bodies, it is what we have never tried yet, and we cannot guess how we should feel ourselves, when we are stripped of Flesh and Blood; what Entertainments we shall find in that Place, where there is neither Eating nor Drinking, neither Marrying, nor giving in Marriage ; what kind of Business and Employment we shall have there, where we shall have no Occasion for any of these Things which employ our Time here ; for when we have no use of Food, or Raiment, or Physick, or Houses to dwell in, or whatever our Union to these Bodies make necessary to us now; all those Trades and Arts, which are to provide these Conveniences for us muft then cease. This must needs be a very surprizing Change ; and though we are affured of a very great Happiness in the next World, which infinitely exceeds whatever Men call Happiness or Pleasúre here; yet most Men are very unwilling to change a known for an unknown Happiness; and it confounds and amazes them to think of going out of these Bodies they know not whither. Now this Consideration will suggest several very wise and useful Thoughts to us.

1. How necessary an entire Trust and Faith in God is: We cannot live happily without it in this World, and I am sure we cannot die comfortably without it: For this is the nobleft Exercise of Faith, to be able chearfully to resign up our Spirits into the Hands of God, when we know so little of the State of the other World whither we are going. This was the first Trial of Abrahan's Faith, when, in Obedience to the Command of God, he forfook his own Country, and his Father's House, and followed God into a strange Land, Heb. xi. 8. By Feith Abrchem, when he was called to go into a Ploce, which he should after receive for an Inberitance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he was going. Canaon was the Type of Heaven; and Heaven is as unknown a Country to us, as Canaan was to Abrahem. And herein we muft imitate this Father of the Faithful, to be contented to leave our native Country, and the World we know, to follow God whithertoever he leads us, into unknown Regions, and to an unknown and unexperienced Happiness

. This indeed all Men must do, because they cannot avoid leaving this World, but must go when God calls for them :


But that which makes it our Choice, an Act of Faith and Virtue, is this, such a strong Persuafion, and firm Reliance on the Goodness and Wisdom, and Promifes of God, that though we are ignorant of the Statę of the other World, we can chearfully forsake all our known Enjoyments, and embrace the Promises of an unknown Happiness. And there are two distinct Acts of this, which answer 'to Abraham's Faith in leaving his own Country, and following God into a strange Land: The first is the Exercise of our Faith while we live; the second when we die.

To mortify all our inordinate Appetites and Defires, to deny ourselves the sinful Vanities and Pleasures of this Life, for the Promises of an unknown Happiness in the next, is our mystical dying to this World, leaving our native Country, and following God into a strange and unknown Land; to quit all our prefent Possessions in this World, to forfeit our Eftates or Liberties, all that is dear to us here nay, to forsake our native Country, rather than to offend God, and lose our Title to the Promises of an unknown Happiness, is, in a literal Sense, to leave our Country at God's Command, not knowing whither we go ; which is like Abraham's going out of his own Country, and living as a Sojourner in the Land of Promise, without having an Inheritance in it. This is that Faith which overcomes the World, which makes us live as Pilgrims and Strane gers here, as those who seek for another Country, for a heavenly Canaan, as the Apostle tells us Abrabam did: For by Faith be sojourned in the Land of Promise, as in a strange Country, dwelling in TaberRacles with Isaac and Jacob, tbe Heirs with him of the Jame Promise ; for he looked for a City which has Foundations, whose Builder and Maker is God, Heb. xi. 9, 10.


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