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when we come into his presence, and to be afraid of his wrath, having made ourselves both odious to bis holiness, and obnoxious to his juflice.
O our God! we are ashamed, and blush to lift up our faces before thee, our God; for our iniquities are increafed over our head, and our trefpafs is grown ap into the heavens c.
To us belong shame and confusion of face, because we have finned against thee d.
Behold we are vile, whai shall we answer thee e? We will lay our hand upon our mouth, and put our mouth in the dust, if so be there may be hope ', crying, with the convicted leper under the law, Unclean, unclean 8.
Thou putteft no trust in thy faints, and the heavens are not clean in thy fight: How much more abominable and filthy is man, who drinketh iniquity like waters h!
When our eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts, we have reason to cry out, Wo unto us, for we are undone i
Dominion and fear are with thee, thou makest peace in thy high places : there is not any number of thine armies, and upon whom doth not thy light arise? How then cán man be justified with God, or how can he be clean that is born of a woman ?
Thou, even thou art to be feared, and who may stand in thy fight when once thou art angry '? Even thou, our God, art a consuming firem, and who knows the power of thine anger n?
If we justify ourselves, our own mouths shall condemn us; if we say we are perfect, that also Thall prove
C Ezra ix. 6. d Dan. ix. 8. f Lain. iii. 29. & Lev. xiii. 45. i Isa. vi. 5. - k Job xxv. 2, 3, 4. m Heb. xij. 29, 12 Plalm xc. 11.
e Job xi. 4. b Job xv. 15, 16,
Plalm Ixxvi. 7.
us perverse; for if thou contend with us, we are not able to answer thee for one of a thousand
If we know nothing by ourselves, yet were we not thereby juftified, for he that judgeth us is the Lord P, who is greater than our hearts, and knows all things 9. But we ourselves know that we have finned, Father, against heaven, and before thee, and are no more wor. ihy to be called thy children".
2. We must take hold of the great encouragement God bath given us, to bumble ourselves before him with forrow and shame, and to confefs our fins.
If thou, Lord, shouldft mark iniquities, O Lord, who should stand ! But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared ; with thee there is mercy, yea, with our God there is plenteous redemption, and he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquites $.
Thy sacrifices, O God, are a broken fpirit ; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not defpife; nay though thou art the high and lofty One that inhabiteit eternity, whose name is holy '; though the heaven be thy throne, and the earth thy footstool w, get to this man wilt thou look that is poor and humble, of a broken and a contrite fpirit, and that trembleth at thy word, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Thou hast graciously affured us, though they that cover their fins shall not profper, yet those that confefs and forsake them fhall find mercy *. And when a poor penitent said, I will confefs my transgression unto the Lord, thou forgiveft the iniquity of his fin; and for this fhall every one that is godly, in like manner, pray unto thee in a time when thou mayelt be found y.
We know that if we say we have no fin, we deceive
o Job ix. 3, 20. pi Cor. iv. 4. 9 John iii, 20. r Luke xv, 21. Ś Plalm cxxx. 3, 4, 7, 8. v Ifa. Vit. 15
w Ixvi. 1, 2,
* Prov. xxvili, 14gu Psalm xxxii. 5, 6.
ourselves, and the truth is not in us; but thou hast said that if we confess our fins, thou art faithful and just to forgive us our fins, and to cleanfe us from all unrighteousness 2.
3. We must therefore confefs and bewail our original cor. ruption in ihe first place, that we were the children of a. postate and rebellious parents, and the nature of man is depraved and wretchedly degenerated from its primitive purity and rectitude, and our nature is fo.
Lord, thou madest man upright, but they have fought out many inventions a ; and being in honour did not understand, and therefore abode not, but became like the beasts that perish b.
By one man fin entered into the world, and death by fin, and so death passed upon all men, for that all have finned : By that one man's disobedience many were made finners, and we among the rest :
We are a feed of evil doers d, our father was an A. marite, and our mother a Hittite e, and we ourselves were called (and not miscalled) transgreffors from the womb, and thou knoweft we would deal very treacherously f.
The nature of man was planted a choice and noble vine, wholly a right feed, but it is become the degenerate plant of a strange vine ; producing the grapes of Sodom, and the clusters of Gomorrah How is the gold become dim, and the most fine gold changed i !
Behold we were shapen in iniquity, and in fin did our mothers conceive us k For who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean ! Not one l. We are by nature children of wrath, because children of disobedience, even as others m.
All flelh hath corrupted their way ", we were all
% 1 Johni. 8, 9.
a Eccl. vii. 19. b Psalm xlix. 12, 20. e Rom, v. 12. 19.
d Ila. i. 4.
e Ézek, xvi. 3. flla. xlviti. 8. & Jer. ii, 21. h Deut, xxxii. 32. i Lam.
k Psalm 1.5. Job xiv. 4. m Eph. ii. 2, 3. a Gen. ii 12.
gone afide, we are altogether become filthy, there is none that doth good, no, not one o.
4. We must lament our present corrupt dispositions to that which is evil, and our indisposedness to and impotency in that which is good. IVe must look into our own hearts and confefs, with holy blushing,
(1.) The blindness of our understandings, and their "unapiness to admit the rays of the divine light.
By nature our understandings are darkened, being alienated from the life of God, through the ignorance that is in us, because of the blindness of our liearts p.
The things of the Spirit of God are foolishness to the natural man, neither can we know them, because they are spiritually discerned a
We are wise to do evil, but to do good we have no knowledge. We know not, neither do we understand, we walk on in darkness s.
God speakerhonce, yea, twice, but we perceive it not'; but hearing, we hear, and do not understand v, and we see men as trees walking ".
(2.) The stubbornness of our wills, and their ủnapiness 10 submit to the rules of the divine law.
We have within us a carnal mind, which is enmity against God, and is not in fubjection to the law of God, neither indeed can be *.
Thou hast written to us the great things of thy law, but they have been accounted by us as a strange thing, and our corrupt hearts have been sometimes ready to fay", What is the Almighty that we should serve him z ? And that we would certainly do whatsoever thing goes forth out of our own mouth a. have walked in the way of our own heart, and in the
o Psalm xiv. 3. ja Jer, iv. 22. v Matth. xiii. 14. y Hof. viii. 12.
p Eph. iv, 18.
w Mark viii, 24•
qi Cor. ii. t Job xxxiii. 14. * Rom. viii. 7. a Jer. xliv, 17.
fight of our eyes, fulfilling the desires of the fleck, and of the mind b.
Our neck hath been an iron sinew, and we have made our heart as an adamant d; we have refused to hearken, have pulled away the 1houlder, and stopped our ears like the deaf adder, that will not hearken to the voice of the charmer, charm he never fo wisely e.
How have we hated instruction, and our heart defpifed reproof, and have not obeyed the voice of our teachers, nor inclined our ear to them that instructed us f!
(3.) The vanity of our thoughts, their negle&t of those things which they ought to be conversant with, and dwell. irg upon those things that are unworthy of them, and tend to corrupt our minds,
Every imagination of the thoughts of our heart is evil, only evil, and that continually, and it has been fo from our youths.
O how long have those vain thoughts lodged within us h! those thoughts of foolishness which are sini; From out of the heart proceed evil thoughtsk; which devise mischief upon the bed', and carry the heart with the fool's eyes into the ends of the earth m.
But God is not in all our thoughts, 'tis well if he be in any » : Of the Rock that begat us, we have been unmindful o, and have forgotten the God that formed USP: We have forgotten him days without number, and our hearts have walked after vanity, and become vain. Their inward thought having been, that our houses should continue for ever; this our way is our folly a
(1) The carnality of our affections, their being placed upon wrong objects, and carried
beyond due bounds.
b Eccl. xi, 19.
c Isa. xlviii. 4. d Zech. vii. 11, 12. e Psalm lviii. 4,5. f Prov. v. 12. 1 3. & Gen.v: 5.3, 21• b Jer. iv. 14. i Prov.xxiv.9. k Mat. xv. 19. 7 Mic. m Prov, xvii. 24:
n Psalm 8.4.
o Deut. xxxii. 18 P Jer. ii. 32. q Psalm xlix. 11, 13.