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I pray you what doth Christ require of a christian man, or of
a christian woman ? Christ requireth nothing else of a christian man or woman, but that he will observe his rule. For likewise as he is a good Augustine Friar that keepeth well St. Augustine's rule, so he is a good christian man that keepeth well Christ's rule.
Now then, what is Christ's rule ? Christ's rule consisteth in many things, as in the commandments, and the works of mercy, and so forth. And because I cannot declare Christ's rule unto you at one time, as it ought to be done, I will apply myself according to your custom at this time of Christmas; I will as I said, declare unto you Christ's rule, but that shall be in Christ's cards. And where you are wont to celebrate Christmas in playing at cards, I intend with God's grace to deal unto you Christ's cards, wherein you shall perceive Christ's rule. The game that we will play at shall be the triumph, (or trump,) which if it be well played at, he that dealeth shall win ; the players shall likewise win, and the standers and lookers upon shall do the same ; insomuch that there is no man that is willing to play at this triumph with these cards, but they shall be all winners and no losers. Let therefore every christian man and woman play at these cards ; that they may have and obtain the triumph ; you must mark also that the triumph must apply to fetch home unto him all the other cards, whatsoever suit they be of.
The evil-disposed affections and sensualities in us are always contrary to the rule of our salvation. What shall we do now or imagine to thrust down these Turks, and to subdue them! It is a great ignominy and shame for a christian man to be bound and subject unto a Turk. Nay, it shall not be so, we will first cast a trump in their way, and play with them at cards who shall have the better; let us play therefore on this fashion with this card. Whene soever it shall happen these foul passions and Turks to rise in our stomachs against our broth er, or neighbour, either for unkind words, in
juries, or wrongs, which they have done unto us, contrary unto our mind, straightways let us call unto our remembrance, and speak this question unto ourselves, “ Who art thou ?” The answer is, I am a christian man. Then farther we must say to ourselves,
66 What requireth Christ of a christian man ?" Now turn up your trump, your heart, (hearts is trump, as I said before,) and cast your trump, your heart, on this card, and upon
shall learn what Christ requireth of a christian man, not to be angry, nor moved to ire against his neighbour, in mind, countenance, nor otherways, by word or deed. Then take up this card with your heart, and lay them together : that done, you have won the game of the Turk, whereby you have defaced and overcome by true and lawful play ; but, alas, for pity, the Rhodes are won and overcome by these false Turks; the strong castle faith is decayed, so that I fear it is almost impossible to win it again.
Considering that we be so prone and ready to continue in sin, let us çast down ourselves with Mary Magdalen, and the more we bow