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Secondly, God doth cast down sinners under the sight and sense of sin, that so the children of God might cast away sin with the more indignation: and therefore God doth cast him down the more by the way of humiliation. When a man shall take a knife in his hand, and he fall with his knife in his hand, and thereby cut himselfe with it, away he presently flings the knife from him. Now it is so in the waies of sin and wickedness, when you take sin into your hands, when you go into any unwarrantable course; when you fall into sin, you take knives into your hands, and in falling so into sin you cut your selves. God makes that knife of sin to cut your heart, to cut your conscience, and you wound your souls; and seeing sin doth as knives wound you in your falling therein, you should with the more indignation cast it from you. You read in Isa. 30. 19, 22. of sorrow for sin, The people shall dwell in Zion, they shall weep no more: he will be very gracious unto thee, at the voice of thy cry; he will hear it, he will answer thee. Here is Gods promise upon their humiliation: then in ver. 22. Ye shall defile also the covering of the graven Images of silver, and the ornament of thy molten Images*of gold: thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth; thou shalt say unto it, Get thee hence. God maketh his people to mourn for sin, and to cast them down for sin, and to humble them under the sight and sense of sin, and to make them to have indignation against sin, and then to cast sin from them as a menstruous cloth: And as it is with nurses when they would wean their children, they will put some bitter thing upon the brest, as Wormwood or Gall, thereby to make the child to forsake the brest: So God he puts bitter things upon those things which we account sweet; he puts bitter potions upon the brest of our sinful delights, that so he might wean his people from sucking any more at those poysonous brests which we so highly esteem in our corrupt nature. You read of the prodigal son in Luk. 15. 16. when he was brought to those great straights and trouble, that he desired to feed of*the husks with the swine, after he came to himself, he desired to eat bread and be as one of the hired servants in his fathers house. When God doth make his people smart for sin, as the prodigal did in his absence from his fathers house; when they are laid low for sin, under the sense and sight of their sins, as the prodigal was; when they come to themselves again, then they would be glad with the prodigal to prize their fathers house. So the soul, when he comes to be brought very low for sin, then they come to set a high esteem on Jesus Christ. It is very observable, where humiliation for sin is mentioned, there it is joyned with a detestation and segregation from sin, Jam. 4 8. Joel 2. 12.
Sixthly, Consider that wicked men have not always comfort and contentment in their abundance and prosperity in the world; wicked men, though they do prosper and abound, yet they have mixture of discontents and vexations, and unsatisfiablenesse with their abundance. Would you envy a man to see him have a silken Stocking, but a gouty Leg? Alas beloved, wicked men may be clad in silk, but you do not know the pain that may be under a silken garment: It may be a poor Leathern coat, a poor russet coat hath more inward contentation of mind, that gets but his 12. d. per diem, then that man that gets his hundreds in the week. I have seen many times people wear a neat Shoo, yet confess themselves the shoo pincht them. Beloved, wicked men may be more neatly clad then other men may be, and have more of the world then other men; yet God may pinch them with a gauled conscience, that they have gotten their Estates by oppression, and by unjust gain. O wilt thou envy a wicked man! if godly men knew that vexation and horror of conscience that accompanies a wicked mans abundance, they would not have their abundance for all the world; they had rather die beggers, then live rich men. You read of Haman, Esther 5. 13. Yet all this availeth me nothing, so long as I see Mordecai sitting at the Kings gate.* He was the Kings favourite, he had more favour at Court with Ahasuerus then all the Court besides; yet a trifle did eat our all Hamans comfort and contentment, and made him lie down on his bed with sorrow, and would not be comforted, because he could not get a bow of the knee from Mordecai. Why a little thing will discontent a wicked man, and will make him off the hooks. We read of Ahab, he had the best Kingdom of the world, the Kingdom of Israel; yet he could not be contented, because he could not have Naboths Vineyard, he was sick for it. Ye have a notable passage in Eccles. 5. 10, 12. He that loveth silver, shall not be satisfied with*silver; nor he that loveth abundance, with increase: This is also vanity. Dost thou love money? money shall never satisfie thee; dost thou love abundance? thou shalt have abundance, but thou shalt not be satisfied for all that. The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much; but the abundance of the rich shall not suffer him to sleep. A poor day-labouring man, whether he eats little or much, can have a sweet nights sleep; but a wicked man many times hath abundance, and that makes him that he cannot take his rest; what care in the keeping, what fear in the losing, and what thought in the getting more, these do cruciate and torment the thoughts of many wicked men. So true is that saying of Jesus Christ, Luke 12. 15. And he said, Take heed and beware*of covetousnesse; for a mans life consisteth not in the abundance which he possesseth. Thou mayst have abundance, and yet the comfort of thy life not consist in all thy abundance. I but now good men they have more comfort, inward quiet and contentation of mind with a little, then the wicked have with all their abundance. Psalm. 37. 16. A little that a righteous man hath, is better then the riches of many wicked. Prov. 15. 16. Better is a little with the fear of the Lord, then great treasures and trouble therewith. There may be great treasures, and great trouble; there may be little of the world, and yet great peace therewith. Therefore be not disquieted because wicked men prosper in the world. 2b1af7f3a8