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SERMON LXXX.

The law of thy mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver.—Ver. 72.

THESE words may be conceived as a reason of what was ‘said in the foregoing verse. David hath told us there that it was good for him that he was afflicted, because of the benefit obtained by his afflictions; he had learned God’s statutes, knew more of his duty, and had a heart to keep closer to it. Now this gain was more to him than his loss by affliction; for he doth not value his happiness by his temporal interests so much as by his thriving in godliness. All the wealth in the world was not so much to him as the spiritual benefit which he got by his sore troubles; for ‘the law of thy mouth,’ &c.

The text is a profession of his respect to the word, a profession which containeth in it the very spirit of godliness, a speech that becometh only such a man’s mouth as David was, one that is sincerely godly. Many will be ready to make this profession, but other things do not suit; the profession of their mouths is contradicted by the disposition of their hearts, and the course and tenor of their lives. Observe here two things:—

1. The things compared.

2. The value and preference of the one above the other.

[1.] The things compared. On the one side there is the law of God’s mouth; on the other, thousands of gold and silver.

[2.] The value and preference of the one above the other, it is better to me, it is better in itself. There was reason for his esteem and choice. Many will say it is better in itself, but David saith it is better to me. Let us explain these circumstances as they are laid.

[1.] The things compared.

(1.) On the one side there is ‘the law of God’s mouth:’ it is God’s own word, and we should be as sure of it as if we had heard him utter and pronounce it with his own mouth, or had received it immediately 262by oracle from him. And indeed that is one way to raise this esteem: 1 Thes. ii. 13, ‘Receiving it not as the word of men, but, as it is in truth, the word of God, which worketh effectually in you that believe.’ In the word we must consider two things—the authority of it, and the ministry of it. If we consider the authority of it, so it cometh from God’s mouth; if we consider the ministry of it, so it cometh by man’s mouth, for he speaketh to us by men: 2 Peter i. 21, ‘Holy men spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.’ If we look to the ministry only, and not to the authority, we are in danger to slight it; certainly shall not profit by it. Many do so, as Samuel thought Eli called him, when it was the Lord, 1 Sam. iii. 7, 8; but when we consider who is the author of it, then it calleth for our reverence and regard.

(2.) On the other side, ‘thousands of gold and silver.’ Where wealth is set out—(1.) By the species and kind of it—gold and silver; gold for hoarding and portage, silver for present commerce. (2.) The quantity, ‘thousands,’ that is, thousands of pieces, as that addition is used, Ps. lxviii. 30, ‘They shall submit themselves with pieces of silver,’ or talents, as the Chaldee paraphrase expoundeth it. ‘Money answereth all things,’ Eccles. x. 19. It can command all things in the world, as the great instrument of commerce.

[2.] The value and preference of the one above the other, ‘it is better,’ and it is ‘better to me.’ It is better in itself, that noteth the intrinsic worth of the word; it is better to me, that implieth his own esteem and choice. To say, in the general only, It is better, implieth but a speculative approbation, which may be in carnal men: Rom. ii. 18, ‘And approvest the things that are more excellent:’ but to say, It is better to me, implieth a practical esteem, which is proper only to the regenerate. It is more dear, precious, and sweet to them than the greatest treasure. Could we have such a holy affection to the word, and say also, To me, and to me, we should thrive more in a course of godliness; for a man is carried on powerfully by his choice and esteem, his actions are governed and determined by it.

Doct. The word of God is dearer to a gracious heart than all the riches in the world.

Let me bring proofs: Ps. xix. 10, ‘More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold.’ So speaking of spiritual wisdom, which is only to be had by the word of God, he saith, Prov. iii. 14, ‘That the merchandise thereof is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.’ So Prov. viii. 11, ‘For wisdom is better than rubies, and all the things which are to be desired are not to be compared with it.’ These expressions are frequently used, because the greatest part of mankind are miserably bewitched with the desire of riches; but God’s children are otherwise affected, they have a better treasure.

Let me prove two things:—

1. That the word of God, and the benefit we get by it, is better than thousands of gold and silver.

2. That the children of God do so esteem it. Both must be proved; the one to show the worth and excellency of the word, the other to show the gracious disposition of the hearts of God’s children. There 263is no question but that if these things were well weighed, the law of God’s mouth, and thousands of gold and silver, we should find there is a great inequality between them; but all men have not a judgment to choose that which is most worthy. Many take glass beads for jewels, and prefer toys and trifles before a solid good. Gold and silver draw the hearts of all men to them, and their affections blind their judgment; and then, though the weights be equal, if the balances be not equal, wrong will be done. We do not weigh things with an equal balance, but consider them with a prejudiced mind, and a heart biassed and prepossessed with worldly inclinations.

First, then, for the things themselves; surely gold and silver, which is digged out of the bowels of the earth, is not worthy to be compared with the law that cometh out of the mouth of God. If you compare the nature, use, and duration of these benefits that you have by the one and the other, you will see a vast difference.

1. The nature. The notion of riches is abundance of valuable things. Now there are true riches and counterfeit riches, which have but the resemblance and show. The true riches is spoken of Luke xvi. 11, and is opposed to that mammon and pelf which the world doteth upon. Grace giveth us the true riches and wealth. It is good to state what are the true riches and the false. The more abundance of truly valuable things a man hath, the more he hath of true riches. A child counteth himself rich when he hath a great many pins and points and cherry-stones, for those suit his childish age and fancy. A worldly man counteth himself rich when he hath gold and silver in great store by him, or lands and heritages, or bills and bonds; but a child of God counteth himself rich when he hath God for his portion, Christ to his redeemer, and the Spirit for his guide, sanctifier, and comforter; which is as much above a carnal man’s estate in the world as a carnal man’s estate is above a child’s toys and trifles, yea, in finitely more. Well, then, surely the word of God will make us rich, because it revealeth God to be our God, according to our necessity and capacity: Ps. xvi. 5, 6, ‘The Lord is my portion: I have a goodly heritage;’ and it revealeth unsearchable riches of grace in Christ, Eph, ii. 1, iii. 8, pardon of sins, and life eternal. They that have Christ want nothing, but are completely happy. So for the Spirit; what are all the riches of the world to those treasures of knowledge, comfort, and holiness which we have by the Spirit! What is in one evangelist, ‘He will give his Holy Spirit to them that ask him,’ Luke xi. 13, is in another, Mat. vii. 11, ‘He will give good things to them that ask him.’ The Spirit is instead of all good things, so that the word is able to enrich a man more than all the wealth of the world can. It giveth us abundance, and abundance of better things; so that a man is not absolutely poor that wants gold and silver, but he that wants the benefits which the word of God offereth and conveyeth to us. Gold and silver are but one sort of riches, and but the lowest and meanest sort You do not count a man poor if he have lands, though he hath not ready-money; much less is a man poor if he hath gold, though he hath not silver. So a Christian is not poor if he hath God and Christ and the Spirit, though he say, with the apostle Peter, ‘Silver and gold have I none,’ Acts iii. 6. 264Angels are not poor though they have not flocks and herds and yearly revenues; they have an excellency suitable to their natures. So a Christian is not poor while he possesseth him who possesseth all things. But that I may not seem only to say that the treasures of grace are the true riches, I shall prove it by two arguments:—

[1.] That is the true riches which can buy and purchase all other things, but all other things cannot buy and purchase it. Now all the riches in the world cannot buy and purchase those benefits which the word offereth to us. They cannot purchase the favour of God; ‘For what hope hath the hypocrite, if he hath gained, when God comes to take away his soul?’ Job xvii. 8. Many a carnal wretch doth not make a saving bargain of it; but be it so, he looketh for worldly gain and hath it. What will this stead him when God puts the bond of the old covenant in suit, and demandeth his soul from him? He is loath to resign it, but God will have it: ‘What can he give in exchange for his soul?’ Money cannot purchase the grace of the Redeemer: 1 Peter i. 18, ‘Ye are not redeemed with corruptible things;’ and Ps. xlix. 6-8, ‘The redemption of the soul is precious.’ Men would, if they could, give a thousand worlds for the pardon of their sin, when they come to receive the fruit of it; but all will not do: the wrath of God must be appeased, and the justice of God satisfied, by another kind of ransom. They cannot purchase the grace of the Spirit. Simon Magus would give money for the gifts of the Holy Ghost, but Peter said to him, ‘Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money,’ Acts viii. 20. His request was base and carnal; yet thus far it yieldeth a testimony to the truth in hand, that he thought the gift of the Holy Ghost better than money, or else he would not have offered his money for it; yea, the lowest and far less necessary gift than his sanctifying, guiding, and comforting work. Well, then, all other things cannot purchase these benefits. But, on the other side, these benefits procure all other things. Grace giveth us an advantage in worldly things above others, for certainly ‘Man doth not live by bread only,’ Mat. iv., and his life doth not lie in worldly abundance: the natural, much more the sanctified and comfortable, use of the creatures dependeth on the favour of God and his fatherly care and providence, which is assured to the heirs of promise: Mat. vi. 33, ‘First seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and these things shall be added;’ 1 Tim. iv. 8, ‘Godliness hath the promise of this life and that which is to come;’ Prov. iii. 15, 16, Wealth is not to be compared with wisdom; because ‘in her right hand is length of days, and in her left hand riches and honour.’ A child of God that is obedient to the word hath more advantage for the world than a wicked man hath: he hath a promise which the other hath not, a warrant to cast his care upon God; he gets more by the want of worldly things than a wicked man by the possession of them, for his want is sanctified, and worketh for good.

[2.] The world cannot recompense and supply the want of that grace we get by the word, but this can easily supply the want of the world. The worth and value of things is known by this, what we can least want. Now there is no earthly thing but may be so supplied 265as that its want should be better to us than its enjoyment. Sickness may be better to us than health, because of experiences of grace, 2 Cor. xii. 10. Poverty may be better than wealth, because we may be rich in grace, James i. 9; so James ii. 5; so 1 Tim. vi. 6, ‘Godliness with contentment is great gain.’ Slender provision with a contented heart is much better than a great deal more wealth. Godliness can supply the room of wealth, but wealth cannot supply the room of godliness. If the want of wealth helps us to an increase of grace and communion with God, it helpeth us to that which is of higher and greater value than the enjoyment of wealth could afford. But now, on the other side, the world will not give us a recompense for the want of godliness: Mat. xvi. 26, ‘What is a man profited if he shall gain the world and lose his soul?’ What shall be given to the party for that loss? His soul is lost, not in a natural sense, but in a legal sense, forfeited to God’s justice. We may please ourselves in our carnal choice for a while, but death bloweth away all our vain conceits: Jer. xvii. 11, ‘At his latter end he shall be a fool.’ He was a fool before all his lifetime, but now in the judgment and conviction of his own conscience. His conscience shall rave at him, fool, madman I to hazard the love of Christ for worldly things. These things cannot be recompensed by any other. What poor rewards can the world yield you for the loss of Christ and heaven! Alas! then, you lose your treasure, and have nothing to comfort you but rattles and baubles, which will no more comfort us than fine flowers will a man going to execution. Thus in the nature of riches.

2. Let us come to the use and end of these things, the use of the law of God’s mouth, and the use of wealth. The use of wealth is to support and maintain the present life and the bodily state during our pilgrimage and passage through the world; but the use of the word is to guide and direct us in the way to the blessedness of the world to come. The world supplieth our bodily necessities; ‘But the law of God is perfect, converting the soul,’ Ps. xix. 7. It discovereth a man’s soul-misery and remedy, as it directeth to Christ, and enforceth our obedience to God, and prescribeth a universal adherence to him and dependence on him. Our souls are fallen off from God by sin into a most doleful state, and have no other way of recovery than is prescribed in this blessed word of God. There are three uses of the word of God, and they do all commend and endear it to our respects:—

[1.] It is the great means to sanctify and convey a divine principle and nature in us; it is not only the rule, but the seed of the new life: 1 Peter i. 23, ‘He hath begotten us, not by corruptible, but incorruptible seed,’ &c.; James i. 18, ‘He hath begotten us by the word of truth;’ 2 Peter i. 4, ‘To us are given great and precious promises, that we might be made partakers of the divine nature;’ John xvii. 17, ‘Sanctify them through thy truth; thy word is truth.’ All this is said of the word: it is the means to sanctify us, the immortal seed, the beginning of the new life, the divine nature to make us live after a godlike manner; therefore it is ‘better than thousands of gold and silver.’ A child of God findeth a greater treasure in one chapter of the Bible than worldly men in all their lands and honours and large 266revenues. A poor Christian meeteth with more true gain in a sermon than others can in their trades while they live. God begetteth him at first by the word of truth, and giveth him there the supply of the Spirit; therefore ‘be swift to hear,’ much in reading, and meditation day and night. Oh! there is the true treasure, the pearl of price; there their souls become acquainted with God.

[2.] It directeth us and keepeth us from being carried away with every deceit of sin: Ps. cxix. 105, ‘Thy word is a light unto my path, and a lamp unto my feet.’ Here are directions for all cases: here is a general direction, it is a light to our path; and showeth us what to do in particular actions, it is a lamp to our feet. So ver. 133, ‘Order my steps in thy word, and let no iniquity have dominion over me.’ It is the word prevents the reign of any one sin. To have a sure rule to walk by in the midst of so many snares and temptations is a greater favour than to enjoy the greatest affluence of worldly felicity.

[3.] It supporteth us in all our afflictions and extremities. All the wealth in the world composed and put together cannot yield us that true contentment and satisfaction which the word of God doth to the obedient soul. Wealth cannot allay a grieved mind nor appease a wounded conscience. The word directeth us where we may find rest for our souls: Jer. vi. 16, ‘Go ask for the good old way, and you shall find rest for your souls.’ We lose ourselves in a maze of uncertainties till we come to the word of God: Mat. xi. 28, ‘Come unto me, all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and ye shall find rest for your souls.’ Here is ease for the great wound and maim of nature. The great maim of nature is sin. Now where shall we have a plaster for this sore, but only in the word of God? So for particular afflictions: Rom. xv. 4, ‘That ye, through the patience and comfort of the scriptures, might have hope.’ Comfort is the strengthening of the mind, or the fortifying the mind when it is vexed and weakened with doubts, fears, and sorrows: ‘I had fainted in my affliction unless thy word had quickened me,’ Ps. cxix. 50. The comforts of the world appear and vanish in a moment, cannot firmly stay and revive the heart; every blast of temptation scattereth them. Philosophy and natural reason cannot give us true ground of comfort: that was it they aimed at, how to fortify the soul and keep it quiet notwithstanding troubles in the flesh; but as they never understood the true ground of misery, which is sin, so neither the true ground of comfort, which is Christ. That which man offereth cannot come with such power and authority upon the conscience as that which God offereth, and bare reason cannot have such an efficacy as divine testimony and the law of God’s mouth. This moonlight rotteth before it ripeneth fruits; but the word acquainteth us with Christ, who is the foundation of comfort; with the Spirit, who is the efficient cause of comfort; with the promise of heaven, which is the true matter of comfort; with faith, the great instrument to receive it.

3. Let us look to the duration. There is a vanity and uncertainty in all these outward things; they soon take the wing, and leave us in sorrow. If they continue with us till death, then they have done all their work. Wealth may bring you to the grave, but it can stead you no further; then wealth is gone, but horror doth continue: Luke xvi. 24, ‘Son, in thy lifetime thou enjoyedst thy good things.’ These good things are only commensurate with life. Sometimes they do not last so long; but when we must leave the world, and launch out to those unknown regions, Job xxvii. 8, how miserable shall we be! Worldly comforts will fail us when we have most need of them, as Jonah’s gourd when the sun scorched him. So in the hour of death, what will bags of gold do then? But now, on the other side, wisdom is better than gold and silver, because ‘with her are durable riches and righteousness,’ Prov. viii. 18, 19; therefore ‘my fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold, and my revenue than choice silver.’ If a man would labour for anything, labour for that which is eternal, John vi. 27. No treasure can be compared to eternal life, and this the word assureth us of.

Secondly, Let us now come to examine why the children of God value it so.

1. Because they are enlightened by the Spirit, when others have their eyes dazzled with external splendour, and their judgment corrupted by their senses. It is not ignorance undoes the world so much as want of spiritual prudence. Spiritual and heavenly things can only be seen in the light of the Spirit, without which we can neither discern the truth or worth of them in order to choice: 1 Cor. ii. 14, ‘The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit:’ and therefore, till we have this illuminating and sanctifying light of the Spirit, we shall not make a good choice for ourselves. Eph. i. 17, 18, the apostle prayeth, ‘That the Lord would give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation; the eyes of your understanding being enlightened, that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.’ That saving knowledge of divine mysteries which causeth us to prefer and choose them above other things comes from the Spirit of wisdom and revelation; otherwise, in seeing we see not. There is a perfect contradiction many times between speculative and practical knowledge. The common wisdom and knowledge of divine mysteries is a gift that cometh from the Spirit, much more the spiritual discerning.

2. They are affected with their true necessities. Our real necessities are the necessities of the soul. Bodily wants are more urging and pressing upon us, but these are more dangerous; therefore gold and silver, which supplieth our bodily necessities, is not so welcome to them as the law of God’s mouth, which provideth a remedy for their soul-defects. How to be justified, how sanctified, is more than what shall we eat and drink, and wherewith shall we be clothed. Usually soul-necessities are overlooked; we regard them not, or conceit we are well already: Rev. iii. 17, ‘Thou thoughtest thou wast rich, and increased with goods, and hadst need of nothing:’ and then we have no relish for the offered remedy. The word of God is the offered remedy to repair our collapsed state. The gospel is not only true, but worthy to be embraced, 1 Tim. i. 15; but who will embrace it but the sensible sinner? for it is offered as a remedy to the sick and deliverance to the captive: it is not enough to see the excellency of things, but we must see our necessity of them. There are two hindrances that prejudice our salvation—either the necessity and excellency 268of the gospel is not considered, or the truth and reality of it is not believed.

3. They measure all things with respect not to this world but the world to come. It is a high point of religion to do all things and regard all things for eternal ends: 2 Cor. iv. 18, ‘Looking not to things seen, that are temporal, but to the things which are not seen, which are eternal:’ making this our scope, and doing all to this end. Gold and silver are the most valuable things in the world: what cannot gold and silver buy in this world? But there is another world, and believers look to things unseen. Within a while it will not be a pin to choose whether we have enjoyed much or little of this world’s good things; but much will lie upon this, whether we have obeyed God, and glorified God, and accepted of Christ. The use of gold and silver ceaseth in the world to come: these things are not current in Canaan, nor accounted of in our heavenly country; therefore money should be a vile thing instead of grace. We can carry away none of these things with us when we die, Eccles. v. 15; and surely that which hath no power to free us from death, to comfort us in death, or go with us into another world after death, is no happiness or solid tranquillity.

4. They have had trial and experience of the word, what a comfort and support it hath been to them: 1 Peter ii. 2, 3, ‘As new-born babes desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby; if so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.’ There is an appetite followeth the new nature, and makes us desire spiritual food: Phil. i. 9, 10, ‘And this I pray, that ye may abound in all knowledge and in all judgment, that ye may approve the things that are excellent.’ When the Spirit giveth us a taste of the goodness of those things offered in the word of God, a taste of divine truth in our souls, when we find these comforts verified in us, then we come to approve the things that are excellent above all other things: Ps. cxix. 11, ‘Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee.’ We never know the worth of the word till we come to make trial of it by practice and experience. The pleasure of the word we find in practice, and the comfort and support of it in deep afflictions. It is not so with the world; try it, and loathe it; it is more in fancy than fruition, because the imperfections which formerly lay hid are discovered; but the more intimately acquainted with the word of God, the more we prize it; we see there is more to be gained there than in all the world besides.

Use 1. To reprove and disprove those that prefer gold and silver before the word of God. This is done by four sorts:—

1. This is grossly done by those that revolt from the profession of the truth for the world’s sake: 2 Tim. iv. 10, ‘Demas hath forsaken us, and embraced the present world:’ that betray the cause of religion, as Judas sold his master for thirty pieces of silver; or by those who will transgress for a small hire. The devil needeth not offer great things to them, when they will accept of less with thanks; for two pence or three pence gain will profane the Sabbath or wrong their neighbour. Is the law of God’s mouth dearer to them than gold and silver? Surely no. They may flatter themselves with love to the word, but when they can violate it for a trifle, for a pair of shoes, it is 269a sign that a little gain gotten by iniquity of traffic is sweeter to them than all the comforts of the promise.

2. It is done by them that will not forsake anything for the word’s sake but when they are put upon an apparent trial. Here is gold and silver, and there the law of God’s mouth; what will you do? obey God, or comply with your interests? You show your love by leaving the one rather than the other; as Moses ‘counted the reproach of Christ better treasure than the riches of Egypt,’ Heb. xi. 26. Christ’s worst is better than the world’s best. The Thessalonians showed their love when they received the word in much affliction; but when you decline duty, and are loath to hazard your interests, it is evident what you prefer. To some this may be a daily temptation: If I should be conscionable in my calling, I should be poor; keep touch and honesty in all things, it would turn to my loss. How many are discouraged from the ways of God, and discharging a good conscience, by inconveniency!

3. This is also in part done by them who turn back upon the word and ordinances of God for gain’s sake, and fix their residence there, where they can neither enjoy God nor his people, nor the comfort of his ordinances; as merchants who remove for traffic, and settle their abode there where the true religion is not professed, it may be, suppressed with extreme rigour; especially when they send youth thither, and novices and persons not grounded in the faith. This is like turning a child loose among a company of contagious persons, or setting an empty pitcher to crack before the fire. Commerce and traffic with infidels or persons of a false religion is lawful; but to make our constant residence where there is no liberty for reading and hearing the word of God, no liberty of worship and ordinances, cannot be excused from sin. You make religion to stoop to gain. I will not urge so high and heroical an instance as Moses: Heb. xi. 25, ‘Choosing rather to suffer afflictions with the people of God, than enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;’ but of a Jew since the time of their degeneration. I have once and again read of one Rabbi Joseph, who, being allured with the hope and call to a place of great gain, to teach Hebrew where there was no synagogue, is said to have brought forth this scripture for his answer and excuse, ‘The law of thy mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver.’ Let us Christians remember it, and consider the pertinency of it

4. It is more refinedly done by them who by earthly things are drawn off from the pursuit of heavenly, and are night and day cumbered with much serving, and never take time to refresh their souls with the pleasure of the word; like Martha, cumbered about many things, while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word, Luke x. Felix domus, saith Bernard, ubi Martha queritur de Maria—it is a happy house where Martha complaineth of Mary. But alas! in most places it is otherwise; religion is encroached upon, all remembrance of God and meditation of his word is jostled out of doors by the cares of the world.

Use 2. To press us to make this profession seriously, heartily.

1. When we have wealth this profession should be made to draw off the heart from it to better things. When our store is increased, our hearts are apt to be enchanted with the love of these things: Ps. lxii. 10, ‘If riches increase, set not your hearts upon them.’ Our hearts 270are very apt to be set upon the world; but we must remember this is not the true treasure; there are other manner of riches that we should look after—to be rich towards God, lest I be a carnal fool, Luke xii. 21. Complacency in a worldly portion is a sure sign of a worldly heart, more than greedy desire.

2. When we want wealth we should make this profession to induce us to contentment. The good disciples had the Spirit; to Judas, as the bad one, he gave the purse. If you have spiritual wisdom and knowledge, you have that which is most excellent: James ii. 5, ‘God hath chosen the poor of the world to be rich in faith.’

3. When we lose wealth for righteousness’ sake, we have that which is better. The knowledge of a hated truth is better than to shine with the oppressor: Prov. iii. 31, 32, ‘Envy not the oppressor, nor choose any of his ways: for the froward is an abomination to the Lord; but his secret is with the righteous.’ You have your losses exchanged for a greater good.

Use 3. Of trial. Let us examine ourselves and see what esteem and account we have of the word of God. If any say that we are all ready to profess that we esteem the word of God more than all riches, then let us bring it off from words to deeds. Do you prefer obedience before gain? do you seek after spiritual wisdom more than gain? Prov. iv. 7, ‘Wisdom is the principal thing, therefore get wisdom; and with all thy getting, get understanding.’ Is this your main business, to be wise to salvation? How many afflict and torment themselves to get silver and gold, but how few to understand and embrace God’s law! How little doth this esteem of the word control contrary desires and affections!

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