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of just men above made perfect, which may seem somewhat strange: "It is at least," saith he, " very probable, that God maketh glorified spirits his agents and ministers of much of his beneficence to the creatures that are below them. For,

"First, We see, that where he has endued any creatures with noble endowments, he maketh use of them to the benefit of others. We shall in heaven be most furnished to do good, and that furniture will not be unused.


Secondly, Christ tells us that we shall be like or equal to the angels; which though it mean not simply and in all things, yet it meaneth more than to be above carnal generation; for it speaketh of a similtude of nature and state as the reason of the other; and, also, that the angels are God's ministers for the good of the chosen in this world, and administrators of much of the affairs of the earth, is past all doubt.


Thirdly, The apostle tells us, that the saints shall judge the world, and angels, and judging in Scripture is oft put for ruling. It is therefore probable, at least, that the devils and the damned shall be put under the saints; and that with the angels they shall be employed in some ministerial oversight of the inhabitants and affairs of the promised new earth.


Fourthly, And when even the more noble and superior bodies, even the stars are of so great use and influx to inferior bodies, it is probable that accordingly superior spirits will be of use to the inhabitants of the world below them. The truth of this notion I neither affirm nor deny, but leave it to the consideration of the learned; as it is propounded only as a conjecture. Yet this doth no ways countenance the popish adoration of saints and angels, from which the beloved disciple was prohibited, Rev. xix. 10. xxii. 8, 9.”

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See p. 567. Vol IV.


44 ሂን



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Prefixed to this Volume


June 12, 1700.


YOUR letter by your maid I received yesterday, am glad to hear from you, but sorry for your bodily infirmitys, and desire to sympathize with you, god will gradually wean us from and weary us out of the world that heaven may be more welcom, that rod which drives, or that love which draws us, to god, makes us meet for heaven. I am heartily sorry for that unhappy fraction amongst our friends in Craven, a sad comment upon the 3d of James-tantæne animis cœlestibus iræ! that, with the like in some other places, bodes ill to the nation, and our liberty and if my ink, or breath, or blood would afford a plaistre, I should rejoyce, for they have been, and are dear to me, but what can man doe? I am very jealous that Mr. K hath missd it various ways, and he must either seriously repent, and solemnly declare in a publick professed way, or he cannot expect that either god or man will be reconciled to him: Sin will bring shame, and shaming ourselves is the best fruit of it. I purpose (if the Lord will) to write home to him, to which I have some peculiar obligations: I am glad you have so far concern'd yourself in this affair, and have been faithfull to him and them, and that he shews any relentings, but thats not enough; them that sin, rebuke before all, 1 Tim. 5. 20: especially preachers and I think a time of probation of the truth of Repentance may be fit: I am troubled for his prejudices agt you, and silence to your lettres: I am far from palliating, extenuating, or excusing any ones faults, nugæ in laicis nugæ sunt, in clericis Blasphemice; yet its frequently observed that when men begin to draw up Articles they oft run far back, make worst constructions of tollerable actions, aggravate things to the height; new prejudices are raised, fomented,

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