Use 5. If there be such Evil in Sin, hence then is justi∣fied the dreadful things spoken in the Word against sinners.
THere is more Evil in Sin, than in all Affli∣ction: That's the Argument we have been long upon; and have made some good entrance into the Application of it, there hath been Four Uses made of this Point alrea¦dy, that hath flowed naturally from the Evil of Sin. There are yet divers more Uses which are of great Concernment: wherefore we proceed to it.
Ʋse V. If there be such dreadful Evil in Sin, Hence then the Word of God that speaks such dreadful things against sinners, cannot but be justified of all those that know what sin is. There are verie severe and fearful things, revealed in the Word against Sin. Now, such as understand not what the Evil of Sin is, are readie to think them verie hard. For indeed, it is onlie by the word, we come to un∣derstand, wherein the true Evil of Sin lies. Paul to the Romans tels us, That before the Law came, he knew not Sin: And had I Preached these Sermons concerning the Evil of Sin before the Athenians,Page 456 the wisest of Phylosophers, they would have said as they did concerning Paul, What new? What strange Doctrine is this? And so it is like it hath been unto all those who have no other rule to judge of things by, than carnal Reason and Sence. Those who are not acquainted with the mind of God, revealed in his Word; they perhaps have strange thoughts concerning all that hath been delivered; and think I have been but an hyperboler al this while: but certainly those that judg of things according to the word, they see that there is a realitie in all that hath been delivered, and they justifie the Word in all; yea, they justifie the severitie of the word against sin, when they see it even against themselves, for their own sins; that's a good sign, when the heart of a man or woman, doth not onlie justifie the word in general, but when the word comes most powerfullie, and sharplie against his own sins; yet he lies under the power of the Word, and saith, It is good, and holy, and righteous, the word of the I ord; though it speaks bitter things against his own sins. There are many men and women that have some seem∣ing good affections, and some tenderness of spi∣rit, and would seem to melt at a Sermon, when some truths be delivered to them: but when the severitie and strictness of Gods Justice, in the word is presented before them, their hearts flie off, and they seem to be verie hard things. We have a notable example for this in Luke 20. if you read in the storie before, you shall find the people spoken of, were much stirred, with ma∣ny Page 457 things they heard of in the Word: but in the 16. verse, when Christ told them he would come and destroy those husband-men that had used the messengers so ill that were sent for fruit, and the Kings only Son too: He shal• come and destroy those Husbandmen, and give the Vinyard unto others; and when they heard it, they said, God forbid. Oh God forbid that there should be so much severi∣tie: those people, in this particular, discovering a slightness of spirit; that though they were people that seemed to have tender hearts, and were much stirred, and their hearts melted at some truths delivered: well, but yet when they heard of the severe Judgments against evil men; Oh they had more compassion in them than God had, & said, God forbid that things should be so hard; What? is not God a merciful God? and we hear of nothing but severity; that there should be such severitie in God, utterly to de∣stroy, God forbid. Thus people now a daies, when they hear Arguments of Gods goodness, and mercy, their hearts be ready to melt and yeild, and they be affected, and stirred; but when they hear the severitie of Gods Justice a∣gainst sin, Oh then God forbid that there should be such hard things, God forbid these things should be true. Certainly Brethren, you can∣not have any true meltings of Spirit wrought in you, nor work of Gods Sanctifying Spirit, unless you find such a principle in your hearts, as should cause you to fall down and tremble, and yeild unto the Justice of God, and the severity of the Word against sin; except you find a willingness Page 458 to justifie God and his Word in all the severity that he doth reveal against you in your own sins. I his is the Fifth.