Walking with God causeth the soul to follow God more as be re∣veals himself more.
The Ninth Particular is this: The soul that walks with God, as God reveals himself unto it still more and more, so it fol∣lows God more and more, and still seeks to glorifie God more and more, that's walking: There is a progresse in the waies of godliness where there is a walking. The soul when first it is led by the hand of Jesus Christ to God, and comes and Page 283 walks with him, Oh 'tis sweet and comfortable, but still as God reveals himself more and more to the soul, so the soul still grows up in godlinesse more and more, and still is more holy, and more gracious, and honours God more in the Conversation of it than formerly it hath done, it gets neerer and neerer to Heaven every day; this is to walk with God. There's a notable Scripture in the 63. Psal. 8. David saith there, My soul follows hard after thee, O Lord, thy right hand upholdeth me. As a poor child that is walking with the father, it may be he is weak, and cannot go so fast as it doth desire, but the father puts forth his hand and takes hold of him and so upholds and strengthens the child, and it follows hard after the father: so 'tis here: Oh Lord thy right hand upholds me: If it did not uphold me, I could not walk, but thy right hand upholds me, and then my soul follows hard after thee, and so increa∣ses in godliness more and more: I will praise thee more and more saith David in another place speaking of the honor that he disir'd to give to God in his way, he profess'd he would still ad to the praise of God, and praise him more and more.
These are the principal things wherein walking with God consists.
Now to all these take in that consideration that we have mentioned all along, and that makes it up, That all these are in a constant course of a mans life, This walking with God.
Some other men that know not what it is to walk with God, perhaps they may come and walk a step or two in Gods waies, but they quickly turn out again, and they find them tedious and irksom to them: But the heart that walks with God doth all this that I have named.
That is, Eyes God in all his waies. Behaves its self as in the presence of God. Walks in the same way God doth. Observes Gods designs. And so likewise the rest, and all this in the constant course of his life.
It's true, Through the violence of some temptation there Page 284 may chance to be a step astray, or there may be perhaps some fall in the way; but still the heart is God-ward, and still is towards God, it gets up again, and walks again in the way, it doth not meerly go a step into the way of God as some carnal men do; it may be somtimes when Gods hand is upon them, or upon the hearing of some Sermon, then their hearts are a little touch'd, and they seem to be a little froward; but take the constant course of their lives, and it's in the way of sin; But the constant course of the waies of the Saints, are in the waies of God. As now, a Swine may go through a fair meadow, I but that's not the place that it doth so much regard, but it would be in the mire and dirt, and there it wallows. So it is with many wicked men, they will come and hear, and pray, and do some good duties, this is a Swine in a meadow; but when they come to those waies that may satisfie the lusts of the flesh, there they wallow, that's their proper place, and therefore far from walking with God. A begger will perhaps follow a man a little way so long as he hath hopes of getting any thing by him: but if the man goes still a∣way from him, he turns aside to another way, he will go no further along with him: so 'tis with many men, even many professors they would seem to follow God perhaps for comfort, and for something that they would have from him; but if they cannot find presently what they would have from God, then they turn aside: whereas (I beseech you observe this) the difference between a friends walking with another out of delight of Communion with him, and a begger that only goes along with another man begging for an alms; The man that goes along begging for the alms he doth not regard the company of this man any further than he may have hopes of an alms from him, if he cannot have what he would have, or if he have once what he would have, he turns aside from the man: But a friend that is walking with his friend, that that satis∣fies him is, the company of his friend, and the converse that he hath with him while he is walking, and so he goes Page 285 on in a constant way, and walks to the end of the place where his friend is to go, and is sorry that the walk is so short, and still desires to converse with his friend: So I say, this is the difference for all the world in Professors, there are some that have some touch of conscience, and they see there is no way for them if they have not mer∣cy from God but they must perish, and perhaps they will be seeking of God, and following of God, and crying to God for mercy: but if they have not comfort according as they expect they turn away from him, and seek for comfort other waies: But a gracious heart that is indeed turned to God, it doth not only seek to God for mercy for its self that it might be delivered from misery, but it sees an excellency in God, and finds sweetness in Converse and Communion with God, and loves the presence of God, and this is the ground of the constancy of his heart in the waies of holiness, Because it loves so much of the presence of God, and Communion with God, it is for God him∣self that the soul is in those waies, and such a one will hold out in the waies of God. Indeed one that meerly serves God in a servile way, and seeks himself only in seeking of God, such a one (I say) will be ready to turn aside; but where the soul walks with God out of a sence of Commu∣nion, Sweetness, and Good that there is in Communion with God, such a one goes on in a constant way to the end and is not tir'd in the waies of God as others are. You know, If you be walking from place to place, if you have good company with you, you are not weary, you account the journy nothing, why? because you have good com∣pany, and especially if you have good discourse all along too; so it is with Christians, Oh the waies of God come to be very easie to them upon this ground, and so they hold out.