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SERM in Thofe, who had the Happiness to get into it. I can carry the Parallel no farther, I thank God. For the Prudence and Vigilance of its Governours, as it hitherto bath, fo, I question not, always will take Care, that (Contrary to what happen'd to the Impotent Man in That Story) They who have moft need of the Pool, fhall ever have the Happiness to get firft into it. Impartiality is the Soul of Mercy, as well as Juftice; and adds Farther Degrees of Use and Beauty to the most Useful and Beautiful Thing in the World on shoD or v
To give You, therefore, in little the true Character of This Great Benefaction As Charity comprizeth almost all Kinds of Virtues; fo doth This Foundation take in almost all Sorts of Charities!
But tho' all the Chief kinds of Beneficence are here purfu'd, yet many Miferable Objects in Each Kind are not poffible to be reach'd, with the prefent Stock of Charity, which belongs either to This Hofpital, or to all Her Other Rivals in This Labour of Love. God open the Hands
Hands ofthe Rich, and direct the Hearts SERM. of the Merciful, to build upon the Foundation Their Forefathers have laid; and to fupply what is wanting, to compleat S Their Designs Approving Themselves thus, the true Heirs of Their Piety and Bounty, as well as of their Wealth! Elfe thefe Great Buildings and Endowments of a former Age, like the Virtuous A&s and Atchievements of the first Founders of Noble Families, will become a Reproach, rather than be an Honour, tò a Degenerate and Worthless Pofterity.
Confider with Your Selves, how God hath bleft this City for the fake of the mighty Works that have been done in Her; I fay, for the fake of them.---- For let a Man carry his Thoughts back to that Time, when these Good Designs were first set on foot, and He fhall find, that from thence the Rife and Growth of this City in Trade, Wealth, Interest, and Greatness, is precisely to be dated.
May it grow on, in the fame Proportion! and by the fame Means alfo ! That is, may there still be found fuch a Number of Charitable Perfons in it, as will G 2
SER M. continue the Character which hath hi therto belong'd to it; and, by That means, fecure the Continuation of God's Blef fings upon it. May Charity go on to have its perfect Work; not Living meerly upon the Old Stock, not continuing at a ftay; but Growing and Increasing still, as the Neceffities of Some Men increase, and the Abilities of Others to Relieve them! And thus fpreading it felf to a wider Compass, it fhall affuredly procure a Greater Share of God's Mercies, and Cover a greater Multitude of our Sins.
That This may be the Cafe, the Good and Merciful God grant, through the Great Steward and Difpenfer of his Mercies, Christ the Righteous! To whom, with the Father, and the Holy Ghoft, be af crib'd, as is moft due, all Honour, Adoration, and Praife; Now, and Ever! Amen!
The Miraculous Progagation of the Gospel.
Preach'd before the
October 21. 1694.
ISAIAH lx. 22.
A Little one shall become a Thoufand; and a Small one, a ftrong Nation: I, the Lord will haften it, in His Time.
HE Evangelic Prophet is very par- SER M. ticular, thoughout this Chapter, in defcribing the fudden and mighty increafe of Chriftianity, its triumphant progress
SER M. thro' all Nations, and its prevalence over all the other Religions of the World. And this wondrous Enlargement of it he takes occafion (at the close of the Chapter) to represent as fo much the more Amirable, on the account of that Small Appearance it should make at first, those Slender and Unpromifing Beginnings, with which it fhould fet out. A little one, fays he, in the Words I have read to you, shall become a Thoufand; and a Small one, a ftrong Nation: I, the Lord, will haften it, in His (i. e, in the Meffiah's) time. From which words, therefore, I fhall without farther Preface, take occafion to raise these feveral Heads of Difcourfe.
First, I fhall briefly reprefent to You the matter of Fact it felf, to which this Prophecy refers, how fwift and ftrange a Progrefs the Gospel made, at, and after its first fetting out from Jerufalem.
Secondly, I fhall prove to you, that this Success of it must have been Miraculous, and owing chiefly to the mighty Operations, and effectual Affiftances of the Holy