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There is nothing under heaven, saving a true friend, whose door I never knew him welcome ; but he is who cannot be counted within the number of move- an importunate guest, and will not be said nay. ables, unto which my heart doth lean. And this And though they themselves shall affirm, that dear freedom hath begotten me this peace, that I they are not within, yet the answer will not be mourn not for that end which must be, nor spend taken ; and that which heightens their fear is, that one wish to have one minute added to the uncertain they know they are in danger to forfeit their flesh, date of my years. It was no mean apprehension but are not wise of the payment day: which sickly of Lucian, who says of Menippus, that in his travels uncertainty is the occasion that, for the most part, through hell he knew not the kings of the earth they step out of this world unfurnished for their from other men, but only by their louder cryings general account, and being all un provided, desire yet and tears: which was fostered in them through the to hold their gravity, preparing their souls to answer remorseful memory of the good days they had seen, in scarlet. and the fruitful havings which they so unwillingly Thus I gather, that death is disagreeable to most left behind them : he that was well seated, looked citizens, because they commonly die intestate: this back at his portion, and was loth to forsake his being a rule, that when their will is made, they farm; and others, either minding marriages, plea- think themselves nearer a grave than before: now sures, profit, or preferment, desired to be excused they, out of the wisdom of thousands, think to scare from death's banquet : they had made an appoint- destiny, from which there is no appeal, by not makment with earth, looking at the blessings, not the ing a will, or to live longer by protestation of their hand that enlarged them, forgetting how unclothedly unwillingness to die. They are for the most part they came hither, or with what naked ornaments well made in this world, accounting their treasure they were arrayed.
by legions, as men do devils, their fortune looks 5. But were we servants of the precept given, toward them, and they are willing to anchor at it, and observers of the heathen's rule, “memento mori,” and desire, if it be possible, to put the evil day far and not become benighted with this seeming feli- off from them, and to adjourn their ungrateful and city, we should enjoy it as men prepared to lose, killing period. and not wind up our thoughts upon so perishing a No, these are not the men which have bespoken fortune: he that is not slackly strong, as the ser-death, or whose looks are assured to entertain a vants of pleasure, how can he be found unready to thought of him. quit the veil and false visage of his perfection ? 8. Death arrives gracious only to such as sit in The soul having shaken off her flesh, doth then set darkness, or lie heavy burdened with grief and irons; up for herself, and contemning things that are under, to the poor christian, that sits bound in the galley; shows what finger hath enforced her; for the souls to despairful widows, pensive prisoners, and deposed of idiots are of the same piece with those of states- kings; to them whose fortune runs back, and whose men, but now and then nature is at a fault, and this spirit mutinies; unto such death is a redeemer, and good guest of ours takes soil in an imperfect body, the grave a place for retiredness and rest. and so is slackened from showing her wonders ; like These wait upon the shore of death, and waft an excellent musician, which cannot utter himself unto him to draw near, wishing above all others to upon a defective instrument.
see his star, that they might be led to his place, 6. But see how I am swerved, and lose my course, wooing the remorseless sisters to wind down the touching at the soul, that doth least hold action with watch of their life, and to break them off before the death, who hath the surest property in this frail act; | hour. his stile is the end of all flesh, and the beginning of 9. But death is a doleful messenger to a usurer, incorruption.
and fate untimely cuts their thread: for it is never This ruler of monuments leads men for the most mentioned by him, but when rumours of war and part out of this world with their heels forward ; in civil tumults put him in mind thereof. token that he is contrary to life; which being And when many hands are armed, and the peace obtained, sends men headlong into this wretched of a city in disorder, and the foot of the common theatre, where being arrived, their first language is soldiers sounds an alarm on his stairs, then perhaps that of mourning. Nor in my own thoughts, can I such a one, broken in thoughts of his monies abroad, compare men more fitly to any thing, than to the and cursing the monuments of coin which are in Indian fig-tree, which being ripened to his full his house, can be content to think of death, and, height, is said to decline his branches down to the being hasty of perdition, will perhaps hang himself, earth; whereof she conceives again, and they lest his throat should be cut; provided that he may become roots in their own stock.
do it in his study, surrounded with wealth, to which So man having derived his being from the earth, his eye sends a faint and languishing salute, even first lives the life of a tree, drawing his nourishment upon the turning off; remembering always, that he as a plant, and made ripe for death he tends down- have time and liberty, by writing, to depute himself wards, and is sowed again in his mother the earth, as his own heir. where he perisheth not, but expects a quickening. For that is a great peace to his end, and recon
7. So we see death exempts not a man from ciles him wonderfully upon the point. being, but only presents an alteration; yet there are 10. Herein we all dally with ourselves, and are some men, I think, that stand otherwise persuaded. without proof till necessity. I am not of those that Death finds not a worse friend than an alderman, to dare promise to pine away myself in vain-glory, and I hold such to be but feat boldness, and them that I have laid up many hopes, that I am privileged dare commit it to be vain. Yet for my part, I think from that kind of mourning, and could wish the like nature should do me great wrong, if I should be so peace to all those with whom I wage love. long in dying, as I was in being born.
12. I might say much of the commodities that To speak truth, no man knows the lists of his own death can sell a man; but briefly, death is a friend patience ; nor can divine how able he shall be in of ours, and he that is not ready to entertain him, his sufferings, till the storm come; the perfectest is not at home. Whilst I am, my ambition is not virtue being tried in action : but I would, out of a to fore-flow the tide; I have but so to make my incare to do the best business well, ever keep a terest of it, as I may account for it; I would wish guard, and stand upon keeping faith and a good nothing but what might better my days, nor desire conscience.
any greater place than the front of good opinion. I 11. And if wishes might find place, I would die make not love to the continuance of days, but to the together, and not my mind often, and my body once; goodness of them; nor wish to die, but refer myself that is, I would prepare for the messengers of death, to my hour, which the great Dispenser of all things sickness, and affliction, and not wait long, or be at- hath appointed me; yet as I am frail, and suffered tempted by the violence of pain.
for the first fault, were it given me to choose, I should Herein I do not profess myself a Stoic, to hold not be earnest to see the evening of my age; that grief no evil, but opinion, and a thing indifferent. extremity of itself being a disease, and a mere re
But I consent with Cæsar, that the suddenest pas- turn into infancy : so that if perpetuity of life might sage is easiest, and there is nothing more awakens be given me, I should think what the Greek poet our resolve and readiness to die, than the quieted said, Such an age is a mortal evil. And since I must conscience, strengthened with opinion that we shall needs be dead, I require it may not be done before be well spoken of upon earth by those that are just, mine enemies, that I be not stript before I be cold; and of the family of virtue; the opposite whereof but before my friends. The night was even now; is a fury to man, and makes even life unsweet. but that name is lost; it is not now late, but early.
Therefore, what is more heavy than evil fame Mine eyes begin now to discharge their watch, and deserved? Or, likewise, who can see worse days, compound with this fleshly weakness for a time of than he that yet living doth follow at the funerals of perpetual rest; and I shall presently be as happy for his own reputation ?
a few hours, as I had died the first hour I was born.
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE FRANCIS BACON, BARON OF VERULAM, &c.
I BELIEVE that nothing is without beginning, but of the eternal Son of God should be united: and God; no nature, no matter, no spirit, but one only, amongst the generations of men, elected a small and the same God. That God, as he is eternally flock, in whom, by the participation of himself, he almighty, only wise, only good in his nature ; so he purposed to express the riches of his glory; all the is eternally Father, Son, and Spirit, in persons. ministration of angels, damnation of devils and re
I believe that God is so holy, pure, and jealous, probates, and universal administration of all crea. as it is impossible for him to be pleased in any tures, and dispensation of all times, having no other creature, though the work of his own hands ; so end, but as the ways and ambages of God, to be that neither angel, man, nor world, could stand, or further glorified in his saints, who are one with their can stand, one moment in his eyes, without behold-head the Mediator, who is one with God. ing the same in the face of a Mediator; and there- That by the virtue of this his eternal counsel he fore, that before him, with whom all things are pre- condescended of his own good pleasure, and accordsent, the Lamb of God was slain before all worlds ; ing to the times and seasons to himself known, to without which eternal counsel of his, it was impos- become a Creator; and by his eternal Word created sible for him to have descended to any work of crea- all things ; and by his eternal Spirit doth comfort tion ; but he should have enjoyed the blessed and in- and preserve them. dividual society of three persons in Godhead for ever. That he made all things in their first estate good,
But that, out of his eternal and infinite goodness and removed from himself the beginning of all evil and love purposing to become a Creator, and to and vanity into the liberty of the creature : but communicate to his creatures, he ordained in his reserved in himself the beginning of all restitution eternal counsel, that one person of the Godhead to the liberty of his grace ; using, nevertheless, and should be united to one nature, and to one particular turning the falling and defection of the creature, of his creatures; that so, in the person of the Me. which to his prescience was eternally known, to diator, the true Jadder might be fixed, whereby God make way to his eternal counsel, touching a Mediamight descend to his creatures, and his creatures tor, and the work he purposed to accomplish in him. might ascend to God: so that God, by the recon- That God created spirits, whereof some kept their cilement of the Mediator, turning his countenance standing, and others fell: he created heaven and towards his creatures, though not in equal light and earth, and all their armies and generations; and degree, made way unto the dispensation of his most gave unto them constant and everlasting laws, which holy and secret will; whereby some of his creatures we call nature; which is nothing but the laws of might stand, and keep their state; others might the creation; which laws nevertheless have had possibly fall, and be restored; and others might fall, three changes or times, and are to have a fourth or and not be restored to their estate, but yet remain last. The first, when the matter of heaven and in being, though under wrath and corruption : all earth was created without forms: the second, the with respect to the Mediator; which is the great interim of perfection of every day's work: the third, mystery and perfect centre of all God's ways with by the curse, which notwithstanding was no new his creatures, and unto which all his other works creation : and the last at the end of the world, the and wonders do but serve and refer.
manner whereof is not yet fully revealed: so as the That he chose, according to his good pleasure, laws of nature, which now remain and govern invioman to be that creature, to whose nature the person I lably till the end of the world, began to be in force
when God first rested from his works, and ceased and, lastly, expounded in the true perfection by the to create ; but received a revocation, in part, by the Son of God, the great Prophet, and perfect interprecurse; since which time they change not.
ter, as also fulfiller of the law. That likewise the That notwithstanding God hath rested and ceased word of the promise was manifested and revealed: from creating since the first sabbath, yet neverthe-first, by immediate revelation and inspiration; after less he doth accomplish and fulfil his divine will in by figures, which were of two natures: the one, all things, great and small, singular and general, as the rites and ceremonies of the law; the other, the fully and exactly by providence, as he could by mira. continual history of the old world, and church of cle and new creation, though his working be not the Jews; which though it be literally true, yet is immediate and direct, but by compass; not violating it pregnant of a perpetual allegory and shadow of nature, which is his own law, upon the creature. the work of the redemption to follow. The same
That at the first, the soul of man was not pro- promise or evangile was more clearly revealed and duced by heaven or earth, but was breathed imme- declared by the prophets, and then by the Son himdiately from God: so that the ways and proceed- self, and lastly by the Holy Ghost, which illuminateth ings of God with spirits are not included in nature, the church to the end of the world. that is, in the laws of heaven and earth, but are That in the fulness of time, according to the proreserved to the law of his secret will and grace: mise and oath, of a chosen lineage descended the wherein God worketh still, and resteth not from the blessed seed of the woman, Jesus Christ, the only work of redemption, as he resteth from the work begotten Son of God and Saviour of the world; who of creation ; but continueth working till the end of was conceived by the power and overshadowing of the world : what time that work also shall be ac- the Holy Ghost, and took flesh of the virgin Mary: complished, and an eternal sabbath shall ensue. that the Word did not only take flesh, or was joined Likewise, that whensoever God doth transcend the to flesh, but was made flesh, though without confolaw of nature by miracles, which may ever seem as sion of substance or nature : so as the eternal Son new creations, he never cometh to that point or pass, of God and the ever blessed Son of Mary was one but in regard of the work of redemption, which is person; so one, as the blessed virgin may be truly the greater, and whereto all God's signs and mira- and catholicly called Deipara, the Mother of God; cles do refer.
so one, as there is no unity in universal nature, not That God created man in his own image, in a that of the soul and body of man, so perfect; for reasonable soul, in innocency, in free-will, and in the three heavenly unities, whereof that is the sesovereignty: that he gave him a law and command- cond, exceed all natural unities : that is to say, the ment, which was in his power to keep, but he kept unity of the three persons in Godhead; the unity it not: that man made a total defection from God, of God and man in Christ; and the unity of Christ presuming to imagine that the commandments and and the church: the Holy Ghost being the worker prohibitions of God, were not the rules of good and of both these latter unities; for by the Holy Ghost evil, but that good and evil had their own princi- was Christ incarnate and quickened in flesh, and ples and beginnings, and lusted after the knowledge by the Holy Ghost is man regenerate and quickof those imagined beginnings; to the end, to depend ened in spirit. no more upon God's will revealed, but upon himself That Jesus, the Lord, became in the flesh a sacriand his own light, as a God; than the which there ficer, and a sacrifice for sin; a satisfaction and price to could not be a sin more opposite to the whole law the justice of God; a meriter of glory and the kingof God: that yet, nevertheless, this great sin was dom; a pattern of all righteousness; a preacher of not originally moved by the malice of man, but was the word which himself was; a finisher of the cereinsinuated by the suggestion and instigation of the monies; a corner-stone to remove the separation bedevil, who was the first defected creature, and fell tween Jew and Gentile ; an intercessor for the of malice, not by temptation.
church, a Lord of nature in his miracles; a conThat
upon the fall of man, death and vanity en- queror of death and the power of darkness in his tered by the justice of God; and the image of God resurrection; and that he fulfilled the whole counin man was defaced; and heaven and earth, which sel of God, performing all his sacred offices and were made for man's use, were subdued to corrup- anointing on earth, accomplished the whole work tion by his fall; but then, that instantly, and with- of the redemption and restitution of man to a state out intermission of time, after the word of God's superior to the angels, whereas the state of man by law became, through the fall of man, frustrate as to creation was inferior, and reconciled and established obedience, there succeeded the greater word of the all things according to the eternal will of the Father. promise, that the righteousness of God might be That in time, Jesus the Lord was born in the wrought by faith.
days of Herod, and suffered under the government That as well the law of God as the word of his of Pontius Pilate, being deputy of the Romans, and promise endure the same for ever : but that they under the high priesthood of Caiaphas, and was behave been revealed in several manners, according trayed by Judas, one of the twelve apostles, and to the dispensation of times. For the law was first was crucified at Hierusalem; and after a true and imprinted in that remnant of light of nature, which natural death, and his body laid in the sepulchre, was left after the fall, being sufficient to accuse : the third day he raised himself from the bonds of then it was more manifestly expressed in the written death, and arose and showed himself to many chosen law; and was yet more opened by the prophets; I witnesses, by the space of divers days; and at the
end of those days, in the sight of many, ascended and the receiving of the holy doctrine, with the use into heaven; where he continueth his intercession; of the mysteries of God, and the invocation and and shall from thence, at the day appointed, come sanctification of his holy name. That there is also in greatest glory to judge the world.
a holy suceession in the prophets of the New TesThat the sufferings and merits of Christ, as they tament and fathers of the church, from the time are sufficient to do away the sins of the whole world, of the apostles and disciples which saw our Saviour so they are only effectual to those which are regen- in the flesh, unto the consummation of the work of erate by the Holy Ghost; who breatheth where he the ministry; which persons are called from God will of free grace; which grace, as a seed incor- by gift, or inward anointing; and the vocation of ruptible, quickeneth the spirit of man, and conceiv. God followed by an outward calling and ordination eth him anew a son of God and member of Christ: of the church. so that Christ having man's flesh, and man having I believe, that the souls of such as die in the Christ's spirit, there is an open passage and mutual | Lord are blessed, and rest from their labours, and imputation ; whereby sin and wrath was conveyed enjoy the sight of God, yet so, as they are in exto Christ from man, and merit and life is conveyed pectation of a farther revelation of their glory in the to man from Christ: which seed of the Holy Ghost last day. At which time all flesh of man shall arise first figureth in us the image of Christ slain or cru- and be changed, and shall appear and receive from cified, through a lively faith; and then reneweth Jesus Christ his eternal judgment; and the glory of in us the image of God in holiness and charity ; the saints shall then be full: and the kingdom shall though both imperfectly, and in degrees far differ- be given up to God the Father : from which time ing, even in God's elect, as well in regard of the fire all things shall continue for ever in that being and of the Spirit, as of the illumination thereof; which state, which then they shall receive. So as there is more or less in a large proportion : as namely, are three times, if times they may be called, or parts in the church before Christ; which yet nevertheless of eternity: The first, the time before beginnings, was partaker of one and the same salvation with us, when the Godhead was only, without the being of and of one and the same means of salvation with us. any creature : the second, the time of the mystery,
That the work of the Spirit, though it be not tied which continueth from the creation to the dissoluto any means in heaven or earth, yet it is ordinarily tion of the world : and the third, the time of the dispensed by the preaching of the word; the ad- revelation of the sons of God; which time is the ministration of the sacraments; the covenants of the last, and is everlasting without change. fathers upon the children, prayer, reading; the censures of the church; the society of the godly; the cross and afflictions; God's benefits; his judgments upon others; miracles; the contemplation of his creatures : all which, though some be more princi
A PRAYER, OR PSALM, pal, God useth as the means of vocation and conversion of his elect; not derogating from his power to call immediately by his grace, and at all hours and moments of the day, that is, of man's life, according
LORD BACON, CHANCELLOR OF ENGLAND to his good pleasure.
That the word of God, whereby his will is reveal- Most gracious Lord God, my merciful Father, ed, continued in revelation and tradition until Mo- from my youth up, my Creator, my Redeemer, my ses; and that the Scriptures were from Moses's time Comforter. Thou, O Lord, soundest and searchest to the times of the apostles and evangelists; in the depths and secrets of all hearts: thou acknowwhose age, after the coming of the Holy Ghost, the ledgest the upright of heart: thou judgest the hypoteacher of all truth, the book of the Scriptures was crite : thou ponderest men's thoughts and doings as shut and closed, so as not to receive any new addi- in a balance : thou measurest their intentions as tion ; and that the church hath no power over the with a line : vanity and crooked ways cannot be hid Scriptures to teach or command any thing contrary from thee. to the written word, but is as the ark, wherein the Remember, O Lord, how thy servant hath walked tables of the first testament were kept and preserved: before thee : remember what I have first sought, that is to say, the church hath only the custody and and what hath been principal in my intentions. I delivery over of the Scriptures committed unto the have loved thy assemblies : I have mourned for the same; together with the interpretation of them, but divisions of thy church : I have delighted in the such only as is conceived from themselves.
brightness of thy sanctuary. This vine which thy That there is a universal or catholic church of right hand hath planted in this nation, I have ever God, dispersed over the face of the earth, which is prayed unto thee, that it might have the first and Christ's spouse, and Christ's body ; being gathered the latter rain; and that it might stretch her branches of the fathers of the old world, of the church of the to the seas and to the floods. The state and bread Jews, of the spirits of the faithful dissolved, and the of the poor and oppressed have been precious in spirits of the faithful militant, and of the names yet mine eyes : I have hated all cruelty and hardness to be born, which are already written in the book of heart: I have, though in a despised weed, proof life. That there is also a visible church, distin- cured the good of all men. If any have been my guished by the outward works of God's covenant, enemies, I thought not of them; neither hath the
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