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they fhall pass for fuch. So alfo amongst the divided and fubdivided Parties, into which our modern Christendom is rent and crumbled, how few are there that follow their Saviour Chrift Jefus, in the Spirit of Humility, Refignation, and bearing the Crofs. Do they not rather every one pride himself in the Rags of his own filthy Covering, inftead of the Covering of God's *Ifa. 30.1. Spirit? They have forfaken the Fountain of living Waters, and have hewn out for themfelves broken Cisterns that will hold no Water, Jer. 2. 13. And rather than they will walk in the dark and difconfolate Path of the Cross, they will kindle a falfe Fire of their own, and encompass themselves with Sparks of their own kindling; but their End must be that they Shall lay down in Sorrow, Ifa. 50. 11. That is, All thofe Perfons, whofe Love, whofe Happiness, and whofe Religion is founded no deeper than the Flesh, or outward Man, fhall be punished in a more remarkable and exemplary Manner, by Plagues and Diseases, which fhall blaft and destroy that Life or Principle, on which they have beftowed all their Care and Pain, and in which they have put their Trust.
That there $4. THAT there fhall be † Peftilences or Shall be fore Difeafes in the laft Days, more remarkably Difcafes in or univerfally than ever, is exprefly foretold the laft by our Lord. There fhall be Famines, Peftilences, Days. and Earthquakes in divers Places, Mat. 24.7. Luke 21. 11. (to omit feveral Places in the Prophetical Writings which undoubtedly belong to the fame time) by which, as I principally underftand that Species of Difeafes,
feafes, commonly called by us the Plague and
one or two.
(1) ALL thofe Maladies and Diseases which are called Terror, or, (as the † Word ufed by the LXXII seems rather to import) extreme Melancholy or Dejection of Spirit; Confumption,Burning Ague, or (as inter the LXXII understood it) the King's Evil, (which alfo feems to be implied by its Predicate, viz. that fhall confume the Eyes) as alfo what is call'd Deut. 28. 22. The ConSumption, Fever, Inflammation, extreme Burning, Blafting (or Blight) and Mildew,as alfo v. 28. Madness and Blindness, v. 27. the Botch of Egypt and the Emerods, the Scab, and the incurable Itch, and v. 59, 60, 61. All the great Plagues and fore Sicknelles, and all the Difeafes of Egypt, and every Sickness, and every Plague that is not written in the Book of the Law. All these, I fay, are briefly comprehended in the one *Word which we tranflate Peftilence. When ye are gathered together within your Cities, I will Jend the Peftilence among you, Levit. 26. 25. The Lord fhall make the Peftilence cleave unto thee, until he bave confumed thee from off the Land, whither thou goeft to poffefs it. Deut. 28. 21. In the latter of which Places it is obfervable E 2
that God threatens to fmite them with this Peftilence, till it have confum'd them (ut*terly, or perfectly confum'd them, * as the The Words fignify) from the Face of the Earth or Land, &c. which if it were meant precifely of that Species of Diftempers fo commonly called, it cannot be easily conceived what occafion there fhould be for those other Evils mentioned in the very next Verfe. We are therefore rather to understand by it the whole Complex or Body of Diseases, in which Senfe it is commonly ufed bythe latter Prophets,whenfoever they had occafion to threaten the Jews with thofe Judgments which God had before in this Place fo folemnly denounced against their Difobedience: So alfo it is used by the latter Rabbins; as appears particularly from the Book of R. Jacob, Intitled, Sepher Abeboth Rochel, which treats of the laft Times, and of the Signs and Tokens that fhall precede the Coming of the Meffiah, where Lib. 1. Part 1. there are thefe Words, fpeaking of the fecond Sign. 'God' fhall
fend upon the World an exceffive Heat from the Sun, with Confumption and Burning Fevers, and other bad Diseases, the Peftilence alfo, and other Plagues, which fhall deftroy daily thousands of People, and fo fhall all the Wicked in Ifrael perifh. All of them underftanding no more by all thefe various kinds of Dif eafes, than what is comprehended, by that one Word + Peftilence, Ezek. 14. 21. and 0ther Places of the Prophetical Writings, where undoubtedly it was meant to fignify
more than the Plague or Peftilence precifely fo called.
(2) THIS may alfo be proved by the common use of this Word by the LXXII, who have only in three Places of the Old Teftament tranflated it by Auds, but no lefs than thirty five times (by Oával, by which Word we understand Death) as it is particularly used Levit. 26. 25. both by the LXXII, Chaldee Paraphraft, and Vulgar Latin. So even the Word Aouds it self, both in Mat. 24.7. and Luke 21. 11. is by the Syriac Interpreter render'd Mors. And lastly, the Word though in almost innumerable Places it be tranflated Oával, and never by Auds, yet it is plain, that in many Places it must be understood by the latter; to inftance only in two or three Places. Death, Oával, is come up into our Windows, &c. Jer. 9. 21. and c. 18. v. 21. Deliver up their Children to the Famine, and pour out their Blood by the Force of the Sword, and let their Wives be bereav'd of their Children and be Widows, and let their Men be put to Death (aváry) and let their Young Men be flain with the Sword in Battle. And Ecclef. 39. 29. Fire, and Hail, and Famine, and Death (dval) all these were created for the Day of Vengeance. All which Places compared together, do fhew that the Word is promifcuously used with eával, and Aouds, all expreffing that infinite variety of Difeafes, Infirmi ties, and Sickneffes, which are the common and ordinary Means of our Natural Death: Perhaps for this Reafon, because the Evils of all other Diftempers are, as it E 3
were, fumm'd up in that one. So then it appears from Scripture, that there fhall be a ftrange Variety of great Sickneffes and Difeafes in the laft Days; which might alfo be further confirmed by many probable Arguments, drawn from Scripture and the Nature of Things: But all these falling more properly under the Third Head, I fhall at prefent omit them, and proceed to Thew:
That these $5. THAT these fhall be the proper and Difeafes peculiar Punishments of that great Branch are defign'd of Sins afore-mentioned, viz. The Pride of the Pride Life, which can be fhewn no other way, of Life. than by making it appear, that wherefoever in the Holy Scriptures God has either punished, or threatned to punish this Sin, he has always done it in this manner, as I fhall endeavour to fhew in four or five Inftances.
(1.) THE Firft Inftance of this kind fhall be that of David numbring the Tribes of Judah and Ifrael, whofe Sin is commonly fuppofed to confift in the Pride and Confidence that he repofed in the Strength of his Armies, and the Number of his Subjects; upon the Commiffion of which Sin, the Prophet Gad comes unto him, and in the Name of God propofes to him thefe three Plagues, the Sword, the Famine, and the Peftilence; and bids him chufe for himfelf which of them he had rather fuffer. may
In anfwer to which, he prays that he