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stance or other; infomuch that Lewdne and Debauchery triumph in the World, fpight of all Oppofition; Charity is wax cold, yea frozen and dead; and vaft M titudes are there in the World, whofe G Philip. 3. is their Belly, and who glory in their Sham

and who (in the most literal Senfe) min
nothing but earthly Things. And this i
that 'Axes (that useless and unprofitable
Temper, when Men live only to devo
the good Things of the World, witho
doing any Good to themselves or the
Neighbours;) which, as good. Old To
tells his Son, Tobit the 4th and 13th, is
Mother of Famine: Which feems indeed t
be the firft Punishment for that Sin,
That God fhould punish the Abufe of h
good Creatures, by taking them from
And this is the Punishment which in d
vers Places of Scriptures he has denounce
against this Sin. Thus God by the Pro
phet Hofea, Chap. 2. threatens the Jew
Nation for their Idolatries and Forgetfulne
of him, who had' given them Plenty and
Increafe of all good Things. Let her, fays
he, Verse 2. put away her Whoredoms out of be
fight, and her Adulteries from between her Breafts,
left I ftrip her naked, and set ber as in the Day
that he was born, and make her as a Wilderness,
and fet her like a dry Land, and flay her with
Thirst. V. 3. For fhe faid, I will go after my
Lovers, that give me my Bread and
my Wool and my Flax, my Oil and my Drink.
V.5. For fhe did not know that I gave her Corn,
and Wine, and Oil, and multiplied ber Silver
and Gold, V. 8. Therefore I will return and
take

my

Water

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take away my Corn in the time thereof, and my Wine in the feafon thereof. V.9. And I will deftroy ber Vines and her Fig-trees, whereof the bath faid, Thefe are my Rewards, that my Lovers have given me; and I will make them a Foreft, and the Beasts of the Field fhall eat them. The fame Judgment is threatned, Chap. 4. for their want of Mercy and Truth. The Lord hath a Controversy with the Inhabitants of the Land, because there is no Truth, nor Mercy, nor Knowledge of God in the Land, v. I. By fwearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing Adultery, they break out, and Blood toucheth Blood, v. 3. Therefore Shall the Land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein Shall languish, with the Beafts of the Field, and with the Fowls of Heaven, yea the Fishes of the Sea alfo fhall be taken away. Intimating the Deftruction of thofe Creatures, which are the common Food of Mankind; either for want of the Fruits of the Earth to nourifh them, or that thofe Fruits if they do grow, fhall be fo curfed as to lose their nutritive Quality; which feems to be hinted, v. 10. For they shall eat, and not have enough.

So alfo the Prophet Amos, in Chap. 4, 56. reproves the Luxury and Uncharitablenefs of his Nation. Hear this. Word, ye that opprefs the Poor, which crush the Needy, Chap. 4. V. I. I have given you cleanness of Teeth in all your Cities, and want of Bread in your . Places; yet have ye not returned unto me, faith the Lord, v.6. And I have also withbolden the Rain from you, v. 7. So two or three Cities wandered to one City to drink Water, but

all

they

they were not fatisfied, v. 8. I have fmitten you with Blafting and Mildew, &c. So Chap. 5. V. II. Forafmuch as your treading is upon the Poor, and ye take from him Burdens of Wheat t; ye have built Houses of bewen Stone, but ye shall not dwell in them: Ye have planted pleasant Vinegards, but je fhall not drink Wine of them. For I know your manifold Tranfgreffions, and your mighty Sins: They afflict the Fuft, they take a Bribe, turn afide the Poor in the Gate for their Rot, V. 12. Therefore the Lord God of Hofts, the Lord faith thus, Wailing shall be in all Streets, and they shall say in all the Highways, Alas! alas! and they shall call the Hufbandman to mourning: And such as are skilful of Lamentation to wailing, v. 16. And in all Vineyards fhall be wailing; for I will pass through thee, faith the Lord, v. 17.

THE Prophet Micah likewife threatens the fame Sins with the fame Punishment, Chap. 6. v. 10. Are there yet the Treasures of Wickedness in the Houfe of the Wicked, and the fcant Measure that is abominable? Shall I count them pure with the wicked Ballances, and with the Bag of deceitful Weights? For the rich Men thereof are full of Violence, and the Inhabitants thereof have Spoken Lies, and their Tongue is deceitful in their Mouth. Therefore also will I make thee fick in fmiting thee, in making thee defolate because of thy Sins. Thou shalt eat, but not be fatisfied; thou shalt fow, but thou shalt not reap; thou shalt tread the Olives, but thou Shalt not anoint thee with Oil, and Sweet Wine, but shalt not drink Wine. And accordingly, whenfoever this Branch of Sin fhall be come to its compleat State or perfect Ful

nefs,

nefs, in any Place, Country, or Nation, then alfo may we expect to fee this Plague more common, xómus, i. e. in divers Places, as it is expreffed, Matth. 24. 7. before it become ftrictly Univerfal, which muft be afterwards. We need not, I think, look far for Arguments to prove the future Increase of this Sin, which is at this Day fo very rife in the World; and is fo far from being checked by those other Evils, of War and Poverty, under which we groan, that we have juft Reason to fear, that it is growing to its Perfection, and will proportionably bring upon us this fearful Scourge before we are aware.

§ 4. Now that there fhall be Famines That there thus General and Univerfal, feems plainly hall be intimated in divers places of Holy Scri- great and ptures; befides thofe other Arguments drawn Famines. from the Analogy and Proportion that God obferves in the Deftribution of his Vengeance, according to the Degree and Quality of the Sin; and thofe others that may be drawn from the Nature and Neceffity of the Caufes that shall produce them.

I. THE Firft Proof that I fhall infift on from Scripture (befides what I have juft touched upon in the beginning, from the Words of our Bleffed Lord, Matth. 24.7. Mark 13. 8.) fhall be from Ifa. 24. where the Holy Prophet, in lofty and fublime Expreffions, fotetells and defcribes the Punishments that God would bring upon the Earth in the latter Days, for the Fulnefs of their Iniquities. That this Pro

G

phecy

phecy belongs to the whole Earth in general, and not to Judea in particular, feems very plain; becaufe, Chap. 22. the Prophet had been very particular in his Denun, ciations against Jerufalem and Judea; as alfo, Chap. 23. against Tyrus; and it is not likely that the Prophet fhould fo soon return again to the Jews, of whom he had been lately fpeaking fo particularly, especially confidering withal, the Prophecy runs in the most general Terms, without any particular Marks or Characters, that may warrant fo particular an Application. And therefore fays he, v. 5. The Earth is defiled, or prophaned (as the Word * rather fignifies; which is by the LXXII tranflated young) under its Inhabitants; Aid ta qvoinčila fay the LXXII; fignifying, as if Nature were out of Courfe, and the Earth were barren or irregular in her Productions and Operations, because of the Iniquities of thofe that inhabited it: Because they bave tranfgreffed the Law (of God,) changed the (or his) Ordinance, and broken the everlasting Covenant; which is the Law or Covenant of Love, which may be in the most proper Senfe ftiled Everlasting; this being, as our Bleffed Saviour witneffeth, Matth. 22. 38. not only the great but the firft Commandment, being indeed coæval with God himself, whofe Nature and Effence is Love, 1 Job. 4. 8. From whence alfo it follows, that it must be Everlafting, à parte poft, according to which we are told, 1 Cor. 13.8. That Charity never faileth. Because therefore of the Tranfgreffions of this Everlasting

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