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the highest Heavens, to the immediate Throne and Presence of God.
Thus though Hell is a Place of the most perfect Torment and Misery, for it is the Fire prepared for she Devil and his Angels; and therefore it is much more formidable for Sinners to drop immediately int» Hell when they dye, than to suffer» any other State of Punifliment between Death and Judgment; yet he ^s a ve
Sunreasonable man , who does not think the ay of Judgment time enough to be condemned to Hell, and who does not think it misery enough to fall under the Power of Evil Spirits in the mean time: If God think this Punishment enough, methinks Sinners should; and those who cannot fear Hell at the distance of the Day of Judgment, will not fear Hell though it were no farther off than Death. Those who are not afraid of being tormented as Dives was, when they go out of these Bodies, will not fear Hell, though we allow Hell to be a state of more perfect Misery. I am sure Dives thought those Torments so great, that they were sufficient to have made his Brethren True Penitents, bad they known what they must suffer for their Sins as loon as they dye: And those who will not allow that Bad Men are immediately condemned to Hell as soon as they dye, yet must allow that they may be tormented as Dives was. In short, if Wicked Men do not drop into Hell as soon as they dye, yet they fliall be condemned to Hell at the Day of Judgment; and in the Intermediate State between Death and Judgment, shall suffer all those uni..sj known known Miseries which are prepared for wicked Souls rill the Day of Judgment; and those who will not be persuaded by this, will live and die in their Sins, tho you could convince them that they shall drop into Hell as soon as they dye.
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That the Day of Judgment U appointed.
HAVING thus "considered the State between Death and Judgment, let us now more strictly consider the Time of Judgment: And here are several things to be observed and explain'd,
J. That the Day of Judgment is appointed: Ht bath appointed a Day wherein be willjudge the World.
JL That this is a General Day for the Judgment of the whole World.
JIJ. That this Day of Judgment will be at the End of the World.
I. That the Day of Judgment }s appointed; He bath appointeda Day wherein he will judge the World.
This is a Matter of pure Revelation , and can be known no other way; for though we have great Evidence from Reason, that
God God will judge the World, yet to appoint a Day is a free Act of God's Wisdom and Counsel; and this must be learnt from Revelation; and we cannot have a more express Revelation for anything, than we have for this; for St.P««/ tells us in plain Words, That God hath appointed a Day to judge the World: And our Saviour in express Words several times refers to this Day , as appointed and determined by God: In that day many shall fay unto me, Lord, Lord, have we not frophefied in thy name* which refers to some certain Day, 7. Matth. 22. And the hour is coming, in the which aU that are in their graves Jhall hear his voice, 5 John 28. And of that day and hour knowethno man, no, not the Angels of Hem/en, hut my Father only, 24.Matth. 26. wMch plainly signifies that the Day is determined and fijced, because God knows when it' shall be; that is, he knows when he has appointed it: And if it were not appointed, it had been no great wonder that neither Men nor Angels know it...
Now this Consideration, that God hath appointed aDay wherein he will judge the World, is riot without itsuse: For, .. • . 1
ist. This proves the certainty of a Future Judgment, that the Day of Judgment is appointed: For we cannot think that God would appoint a Day to judge the World, unless he absolutely resolved' to judge it.
rrx i, «•.?v/qro3 32v /•.hvV7/3r!:^.' j( Hhv boy) . 2% This answers the Objection against a Future. Judgment, frontf the long delays of it. This St. Peter teHs us would be a great Objection in the. Last Days, of towards the End of the W6rld, 2peti 5 J 2j 4; Kncioing this.fits; thai there shall donk in'the. last days; scoffers,, n)alking after thetr'ewoluBs, and'faying. Where is tbepromtfe'of his conting?for fince the fathers self asleep, all things continue astheyiverefnm the beginning of the creation: That7 is,' consider how old the World now is, and how long Mankind have been frighteny with the Fears of Judgment: Many Ages and successive Generations have lived in expectation of itf; but irisi riot yet,, nor anymore %ns^#it} than when the.World was first madcj and'since it has been selongexpecteti to nb purpose!, kistimdPtod&pife such vain and ground less Fears. •• 'jtiWi bs3"if'':'ic•3o.« a. J v -«1t ^'l/v I'j: • This ought tobe plainly and fully stated; fotwe live in the last Days, and have many of these Sfcof-i fers already among us. . .. ,.'. .: .:• ,r v .j > •i' • '.
1. But if GOD have appointed' the Day of Judgment, it is a very foolisti Argument, to say, That he will not Judge the World, because he has not done it vet, unless we could prove i that the Day appointed for Judgment . is already past. God cannot be said to delay to judge the World, when the Time he has appointed for Judgment is not yet come; for to delay doing any thing , is, not to do it in its proper season,. when it is time to do it; or when we resolved and
determined to do it: And therefore no man can say that God delays to judge the World, unless he could tell what Day God in his own Infinite Wisdom appointed for Judgment. For,
2. That'.. God appoints a long Day for Judg^ merit, no,'. Argument that he will not judge
Thus it was in the Destruction of the Old World a great while before God brought that Universal Deluge on them, but it came at last; and swept them all away; as St. Peter observes, For this they willingly .were ignorant of, that by the word of God the Heavens were of eld, and the Earth* p£' standing out of the Water, and in the Water: where-' by the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished. This General Destruction of the Old World by Water, is reason enough to believe God when he threatens to destroy it again by Fire ; For the Heavens and the Earth which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire again/I the Day of Judgment, and Perdition of ungodly men, 6, 7. It was a great while before God destroyed the Old World; and though this second Destruction by Fire is deferred
much longer, it will come in its appointed time.
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3. For what seems a very long time to us, is not so to God, as the fame Apostle tells One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. God is not .affected with the Succession of Time, nor its lingring delays;