OESJD II.5; on Psal. 144.15

[fol. 3r] Psalme.144. Verse.15:
Blessed are the people yt be soe
yea blessed are ye People whose
God is the Lord.

The first part of this Text hath relation to Temporall blessings; Blessed are the People that are soe. the 2d part to spirittuall: yea blessed are the People whose God is ye Lord. His left hand is vnder my head, Cant.2 6 sayes ye Spouse, yt sustaines mee from fallinge into murmuringe or diffidence of his Prouidence; [fol. 3v] because out of his left hand hee hath giuen me a competenc of temporall blessinges. But his right hand doth embrace me sayth the Spouse there his spirittuall blessings fill me, possese me, soe yt noe rebellious thought breakes out within me, noe outward temtation breakes in vppon mee. Soe allsoe say’s Sollomon againe, Pro:3. 16. In his left hand is riches & glory (temporall blessings) & in her right hand length of days, All yt accomplisheth & fullfills the Eternall Joys in of the Sts. in Heauen. The Person to whome Sollomon attribuits [fol. 4r] this right & left hand, to receiue the blessings of both sorts: And ye person is wisdome, & a wise man may reach out his right hand & his left hand to receiue the blessings of both sorts: And the person whome God Wisedome represents there, is Christ himselfe. Soe yt not onely a worldly wise man but allsoe a Christian wiseman, may reach out both hands to both kinds of blessings, right & left, Spirittuall & Temporall. And therefore Iterrogo vos filij regnj cœloru[m] says St Ausgustine; Lett me aske you who are Sonnes & heires to ye kingdome [fol. 4v] of heauen Progenie resurrectionjs in æternum; you that are ye ofspring of the resurrection of Christ Iesus, & haue yo[u]r resurrection in his Membra Christj, Templa spirit[us] S:tj you yt are ye very body of Christ, ye very temples of ye Holy Ghost Lett me ask you for all yo[u]r greate Reuaerction hereafter for all yt present possessio[n] which you haue of it by an apprehensiue faith & in an holy Conuersatio[n] in this Life, for all this blessednese, Non est ista fœlicitas? Is there not a blessinge in inoyinge Gods Temporall blessings heere too? Sit licet, sed sinistra, sayth yt Father, It is certainly a blessednesse, but a lefthanded bles [fol. 5r] sednesse a weaker a more inperfect blessinge then Spirittuall blessings are.

As then there is dextra & sinstra Beatitudo a right-handed & a left handed blessednesse in this Text soe there is dextra & sinstra Interpretatio, a right & a left Exposition of ye Text. And as these blessednesses Temporall & Spirittuall are seales & testimonyes of Gods Loue, though not both of equall strength, & equall euidence: Soe both ye Interpretations of those are vsefull for our edification though  they be not both of equall authority. That which we call Sinstra [fol. 5v] Interpretationem (the left interpretatio[n]) is that sence which ariseth from the first Translators of the Bible, ye Septuagint, & those Fathers wch follow them, wch thought it be not an ill way yet not the best, because it is accordinge to ye Letter. And then yt wch we call dextram Interpretationem (a right Interpretation) is yt sence which ariseth pregnatly, euidently, & Liquidly, & manifestly out of the originall text it selfe. The Authors & followers of the first sence reade not these words as we doe Beat[us] Popul[us] yt People is blessed; But beatu[m] dixerunt Populum, That People was esteemed blessed: And [fol. 6r] soe they referr this & all the blessings men commend in the 3 former verses to a popular error, to a generall mistakinge, to ye opinions & words of wicked & worldly men, That onely they desire these temporall thinges onely they taste a sweetnesse, & apprehend a blessednesse in ym. whereas they who haue truly theyre Conuersation in Heauen, are swallowed vp wth ye Contemplation of yt blessednesse wthout any reflection vppon Earth, or earthly things. But the Author of ye 2d sence, wch is God himselfe, v his direct word presents it thus beat[us] popul[us] yt People is truly blessed, there is a true blessednesse in [fol. 6v] Temporall thinges; But yet this is but Sinistra beatitudo a lesse perfect blessednesse: For ye Followers of both Interpretations, & all Translators, and all Expositors meete in thjs, yt the perfect, the consummary, the accomplishing blessednesse consists in this, That our God be the Lord.

1.a Inter prelatio. First then to make our best vse of the first sence, That Temporall things conduce not at all to Blessednesse. St. Cyprians wonder is just Deum nobjs soljs contentum esse, nobjs non sufficere Deum; That God should thinke Man enough for him, & man should not be satisfyed wth God. That God should be content wth Filj da mihj cor, my Sonne giue me thy hart; and [fol. 7r] man should not be content wthFilj da mihi Cor Pater da mihj spiritum, my God, my Father grant me thy Spirit; but must haue Temporall additions too. Non est castu[m] Cor, sayes St. Augustine, Si Deu[m] ad mercedem colit; As sayes in an other place: Non est casta vxor, qua amat, quia diues, She is neuer the honester woeman nor Louinger Wife, yt Loues her Husband in Contemplation of her Future Joynture, or in fruition of her present aboundance: Soe he sayes heere. Non est Castum Cor, That man, hath not a Chast, a firme Hart towards God, yt Loues him by the measure of & proportion of his Temporall blessings. The Diuel had soe much color for that Argument yt in Prosperity, there can be noe tryall whether a man loue God or no, [fol. 7v] as that he passes it to God himselfe in Job. 1.Jobs case Doth Job serue God for naught? hast thou not hedged him in, & blessed his Substance? & encreased ye workes of his hands? how canst thou tell whether he will loue thee, or feare thee, yf thou should’st take all this from ..him: thou hast noe tryall yett. And this Argument discendend from yt Father to his Children from ye Diuel there, to those Followers of his whome Mal: 3 44. the Prophet Malachy reprehends for sayinge It is in vaine to serue God; for what profitt is it yt we haue kept his Commaundements: where men are willinge to preferr there Frends, we heare them often giue these Testimonys of them, He hath good parts, & you neede not be ashamed to speake for him; He hath [fol. 8r] mony in his Purse, & you neede not be sorry to speake for him; He vnderstands ye world, he knows how things passe, & he hath a discreete, a ss supple, and an appliable disposition, & he may make a fitt instrument for all yo[u]r purposes & you neede not be affrayde to speake for him: But whosoeuer casts into this scale & valluinge of a man, yt waight, That he hath a religious hart, yt hee fears God; wt profitt is there in yt yf we consider the World onely? But wt profitts it a man if heto gett the whole world & loose his owne Soule? And therefore yt opinion yt there was noe profitt at all noe degree towards Blessednesse in these Temporall things preuayled soe farr, as yt it is easy to obserue in there Expositions vppon the Lords Prayer yt ye greatest part [fol. 8v] of the Fathers doe euer Intepret yt Petition Da nobjs hodie Giue vs to Day this Day our dayly bread, to be intended onely of Spirittuall Blessinges, & not of Temporall: soe St Hierome sayes; when we aske yt bread Illam petimus, quj panis vinus est, et descendit de Cœlo, we make our petition for him who is the bread of Life, & descended from the bosome of his Father, & soe he referrs it to Chrt: & in him who is the bread to the whole Mystery of our Redemption. And Athanasius & St Augustine too (and they two are all one) referr it to the Sacramentall bread: That in yt Petitio[n] we desire such an application of ye Bread of Life as we haue in the Participation of ye body & bloode of Chr: in ye Com[m]union. St Cyprian insists vppon ye word Nostrum [fol. 9r] our breade for sayes he, Temporall blessings cannot properly be called ours, because they are Commune to the Sts. and Reprobates. But in a Prayer ordayned by Christ for the Faythfull, yt Petion is for such thinges as are proper & peculiar to the faythfull. & yt is for spirittuall blessinges onely. If any man shall say Ideo quærendja quia necessaria, we must pray, & wee must labour for Temporall thinges, because they are necessary for vs, we cannot liue without them Ideo non quærenda, quia necessaria, sayes St Chrysostome, Soe much as is necessary for our best Estate, God will giue vs without this Laborious anxiety, of minde & wthout eatinge ye bread of Sorrowinge in this Life. Non sperandum, de superflujs, non [fol. 9v] desperandu[m] de necessiraijs, sayes ye same Father, It is a suspitious thinge to distrust or doubt God in necessary thinges, & it is an vnmannerly thinge to presse him in Superfluous thinges. They are not necessary before, & they are not ours after; for those thinges onely are ours wch. no body can take from vs. And for Temporall thinges Auferre potest inimicus, homine inuito (an Enimy can take it away against our wills a mans will) Lett the Inimic[us] homo be ye Diuel, and remember Jobs Case: Let ye Inimic[us] homo be an Enuious m and a powerful man who hath a minde to yt thou hast, and remember Naboths Case. And this enuious man can take away Temporall things from thee against thy Will. But Spirituall [fol. 10r] blessings cannot be soe taken Fidem nemo perdidit; insj qui spreuerit, sayes St. Augustine. Noe man euer lost his Fayth but he yt thought it not worth the keepinge; And ye spirittuall blessings of a Faythfull man are neuer lost totally; though he fall into Sinnes of Infirmity, though he fall into Scruples of matter of Fayth, yet there is Semen Dej (ye seede of God) in him, all is not Lost.

But for Jobs Temporall Estate, sayes St Augustine all was Lost. And least any man should say Vxor relicta erat Job had not lost all, because he had his wife left; Misericordem putatis Diabolu[m], sayes yt Father, quj ej reliquit vxorjem? Doe you thinke yt Job lighted vppon [fol. 10v] a mercifull & good naturd Diuel, yt the Diuell did this out of Pitty & Compassio[n] to Job, or that Job was beholdinge to ye Diuell for this, yt he left him his Wife Nouerat per quam deceperat Adam; sayth he, The Diuell knew by wtmeans instrumt he deceiued ye first man; And by yt same instrumt he practiseth vppon Job. Sua[m] reliquit adiutricem, non maritj consolatricem, He left Job a helper, but a helper for his owne endes, but for her husband a miserable Comforter. Caro Coniux, sayes ye same Father in an other place, this flesh, this sensuall part of ors. is our wife, and when these Temporall things by any occasion are taken from vs, yt wife, yt flesh, yt Sensuallity is left to mumur & repine at Gods Corrections, & that’s all ye [fol. 11r] benifitt we haue by yt wife & all the Portion we haue wth yt wife. Though therfore St. Jerome who vnderstood the Originall language ye best of his time in his Traslation of the Psalmes doe giue the true ye right sence of this place: yet in his owne Commentarys vppon the Psalmes he taks this Sence & beates vppon this Doctrine, yt it is but a Popular error, but a generall mistakinge to make worldly blessings any degree of happynesse: He saw soe good vse of yt Doctrine, as yt he would not see the right Interpretatio[n] of ye words. He saw well enough yt accordinge to ye Letter of ye Text Temporall thinges were blessings; yet because they  were left handed blessings remembringe ye Story in ye booke of Judges of 700 left=Judges 10.16. [fol. 11v] handed Beniamits yt would slinge stones at an hayres bredth, & were better markmen then ye righthanded: And consideringe ye lefthanded men of this wo world, those who pursued Temporall blessings onely went wth most earnestly and with lesse successe to theyre workes, To correct ye generall distemper, yt generall vehemency vppon Temporall thinges, St. Jerome, & as many of the Fathers as accompany him in yt Interpretatio[n], were content to imbrace yt sence wch is not truly ye Literall sence of ye place, yt it should onely Beatum dixerunt, & not Beatus populus, a popular error, & not a truth yt any man, yt any People were blessed in Temporall things. And soe we haue done wth the first sence of thease words, & the reason why soe many follow it.

[fol. 12r] We are now come to the 2d. Interpretatio[n]2a. Iterpretatio[n] where there is not Beatitudo vera & falsa (a true & a false Blessednesse) for both are true) but there is dextra & sinistra, a right & lefthanded blessednesse. There is Incohatiua & perfectiua, there is an Introductory & a consummatory blessednesse: And in the first of thease, in ye Lefthanded, in ye Lesse perfect blessednesse we must consider 3 thinges, First, Beatitudinem ipsam, yt there is a blessednesse proposed: And 2ly. In Quibus sic, in wt the Blessednesse is placed in this Text Quibus sic. Blessed are ye People yt are soe , yt is soe as is mentioned in ye 3 former Verses. And 3ly. an other In Quib[us] not in wt thinges, but in wt Persons this first Blessednesse is placed, Beat[us] Popul[us], [fol. 12v] It is when all the People, ye whole body, not some rankes of men, nor some particular men in those rankes, but when all ye People participate of those Blessinges.

Now first this blessednesse, As noe Phylosopher could tell vs among ye Gentiles wt true blessednesse is; So no Grammaria[n] among ye Jewes, among ye Hebrews could euer tell vs wt the right significatio[n] of this word is, in wch Dauid expresseth blessednesse heere, whither Acherej (wch is ye word) be a Nowne plurall & signifyes Beatitudines Blessednesses in the plurall number, and intimate thus much, That blessednesse consists not in one thinge, but in an harmony or consent of many, Or whither thjs Asherej be an Adverb (and signify Beatè, and soe be an Acclamation; Oh how [fol. 13r] happily, how blessedly are such men provided for, yt are so! they cannot tell.

Whatsoeuer it be it is ye very first word, yt Dauid begins his booke of Psalmes withall, Beat[us] Vir, as ye last word of yt booke is Laudate Dominum, To shew yt at that passed betweene God & man fro[m] first to last is Blessinges from God to Man, & Prayses from good-men to God; & yt ye first degree of blessednesse is to finde ye print of the hand of God, euer in his Temporall blessinges. & to prayse & glorify him in for ym in the right vse of ym. As man yt hath noe Land to hould by it, nor little to recou[er] by it, is nu neu[er] the better for ye findinge, or buyinge or hauinge a fayre peece of Euidence, a fayre Instrumt. written, duly sealed, authentically testifyed. A man [fol. 13v] that hath not the grace of God, & Spirittuall blessings too, is neu[er] the neerer happinesse far all his aboundance of Temporall blessednesse; Euidences are Euidences to them who haue Title; Temporall blessinges are Euidences to ym. who haue a Testemony of Gods Spirittuall blessings in ye Temporall. Otherwise as in, his hands who hath noe title, it is a suspitious thinge to finde Euidences, and he wilbe thaught to haue embezeled & purloyned them, & he wilbe called to accoumpt for them how he came by them & wt he meant to doe wth ym: Soe to them, who haue Temporall blessinges without Spirituall, they are but stolne blessinges, for they belonge truely to ye Seruants. of God; they are but Counterfeite blessinges; they shall not purchase a Minuites peace of [fol. 14r] Conscience heere, nor a minuites refreshinge to ye Soule heereafter: And there must be an heauy accoumpt made for them; both how they were got, & how they were imployed. But when a Man hath a good title to heauen, then thease are good Euidences; for godlinesse hath a promise of ye Life to come & of ye life 1. Tim: 4.8. yt now is: And yf we spend any thinge in maintenaunce of yt life, giue or loose any thinge for his Glory, & makeinge sure this Saluation, we shall inheritt euerlasting life, sayth the best Surety in the World; But we shall not stay soe long for our Bill of Charges, wee shall haue an hundred fould in this life. St Augustine seemes loth to take Mat: 19. 21. Chrt: at yt large folde for yt which we haue layde vp out for Chrt: word, hee [fol. 14v] seemes to thinke it to great vsury to take ten fold for yt wch we haue layde out for Christ: And therefore he reades in yt place Accipitet septies tantum, He shall receiue seauen times as much in this life. But in both ye Euangelists Matthew & Mark the ouerflowinge bounty & retribution of God is soe expressed Centuplu[m] recipiet (he shall receiue an hundred folde) God repayed Job as he had bine impayred, God recompenced him in Spetie in ye same kinde yt he had bine damnifyed: And Chr: testifyes of himselfe yt his comminge to vs is not onely vt vitam habeatjs (yt ye may haue life) sed vt habeatis aboundanti[us], more aboundantly, yt is, as diuers of ye Fathers Interpret it, That you might haue eternally sealed [fol. 15r] vnto you, in the Prosperity & abundance of this Life. I am the dore sayth Christ in the same Chapter, we must not thinke to fly ouer the Walls by suddaine & vndeserued prefermts. nor to sapp and vndermine & supplant others: We must enter at yt dore by fayre & Christian meanes; And then by me yf any enter in, sayes Christ, there he s shalbe saued; There is a rich & infalliable inheritance. But before he come to yt Saluation, he shall goe in and out; & finde Pasture, sayes that Text. In heauen there is no goinge in & out, but in his way to Heauen, In this life he shall finde his Interest in the next conteined and sealed to him in Temporall blessinges heere: yf Plato found & accknowledged a happinesse in yt Quod nat[us]Vir Homo, yt[fol. 15v] he was borne a man & not a beast Lactantius addes in Platoes behalfe, when he cites yt place out of him, Quod natus Vir, that he was borne a man & not Woeman) Yf he found a farther happinesse, Quod Grecus, yt he was borne a Gretian, & not a Barbarian, Quod Atheniensis, yt he was borne in the Towne wch was ye Receptacle, and dwellinge of all wisedome, & Quod tempore Socratjs, yt he was borne in ye time of Socrates, yt soe he might haue a good example as well as good rule for his Life. As all we owe to God an Acknoledgmt. of Blessednesse, yt we are borne, in a Christian Church, in a reformed Church in a Monarchj, in a Monarchj composed of Monarchies, & in the time of such a Monarch who is a Peace-maker, & preseru[er] of Peace [fol. 16r] both at home & abroade, soe lett all ym yt are borne to Nobility, or borne vpp to Nobility vppon the 2{d}. fayre winges of merrit & of Fauour; all yt are borne to Riches, & borne vp, & borne out by theire Riches; All whome thyre Industry and Wisedome, & vsefulnesse to ye State hath or may any way preferr; take heede of Seperatinge ye Author, & ye meanes, in Seperatinge God & ye kinge in ye way of Fauour, in seperatinge God & theyre Riches in the way of Purchase, in seperating God  & theyre Wisedome, in ye ways of theyre Prefermt.; but lett them allwayes discerne, allways accknowledge. ye hand of God ye Author, in directinge & prosperinge the hand of his Instrumt. in all thease [fol. 16v] Temporall thinges, and thease Temporall thinges are truly blessinges vnto them, & they are truly blessings in them.

In Quibus - This was our first Coninsideratio[n]ndu[m] ye first branch in this part, yt Temporall thinges were Seales & Testimonys of Blessednesse. the 2d. is to wt particular Euidence this Seale is annexed in this Text; vppon wt thinges this Blessednesse is placed heere, wch are all inuoulued in this one little particle (soe) Blessed are ye People yt are so. That is so as a Prayer is made in ye 3 former verses yt they might. Now as the Maledictions yt were threatned to Dauid were presented to him by the Prophet in ye 3 formes of Warr, of Famine, of Pestilence: So thease Blessings wch are Comprised in those 3 Verses, may welbe reduced to 3 contrary to those 3 [fol. 17r] maledictions; to the Blessinge of Peace, contrary to Dauids warr, That there v: 14. may be no Inuasion; To ye Blessinge of Plenty, contrary to Dauids Famine, That v: 13. our Barnes may abound wth all sortes of  Corne; To ye Blessinge of Health, contrary to Dauids destroyinge Sicknesse, That o[u]rv: 12. Sonnes may growe vp like Plants in Pax. theyre Youth.

For the first Temporall blessinge of Peace, we may consider ye Louelynesse ye amiablenesse of yt. yf we looke vppon ye horror gastlynesse of Warre, either in Effigie, in yt Picture of Warr wch is drawne euery where in o[u]r owne Cronicles in ye bloode of soe many Princes & Noble Familyes: Or yf we looke vppor Warr it selfe at that [fol. 17v] distance where it cannot hurt vs; as God had formerly kindled it amongst our Neighbours, & as he hath transferred it now to remoter Nations, whilest we inioy yet a Goshen in ye midsts of all those Egipts. In all Cyttys, disorderly men & facinerous men couet to draw themselues into ye Skirts & Suburbs of those Cittyes, yt so they may be neerer the Spoyle wch they make vppon Passengers. In all kingdomes yt border yppon other kingdomes, & in Ilands wch haue no other border, but the Sea, particular men, who by dwellinge in those skirts & borders, may make theyre Profitt of Spoyle, delight in hostility, & haue an auersnesse & detestation of Peace; But it is not so within, they who till ye[fol. 18r] Earth, & breede vp Cattell, & imploy theyre Industry vppon Gods creatures accordinge to Gods ordinance, feele ye benefitt, & apprehend the sweetnesse & pray for ye continuance of Peace.

This is the blessinge in wch. God soe Copia.very often expresseth his gratious purpose to his People That he would giue ym Peace, & Peace wth Plenty. Oh yt my People had harknend to me, sayth God, I would haue humbled theyre Enimyes (there is theyre Peace) & I would haue filled them wth ye fatt of wheate, and wth the hony out of the Rocke (& there is theyre Plenty) Persons who are preferrd for theyre Seruice in the Warr proue often suspitious to ye Prince. Joabs confidence in his owne merrit and seruice [fol. 18v] made him insolent towards ye kinge & the kinge jealous towards him: But noe man was more suddainly, nor more safely preferd then Joseph for his Counsell to resist Penury, & to Preserue Plenty, & aboundance wthin ye Land. St. Basil in an Homily wch he made in a time of Dearth & Drought (in wch he expressed himselfe wth as much Elegancy as any where, (and euery where I think with as much as any man) while he sayes there was in ye Skyes. Tristjs serenitas et ipsa puritate molesta, that the Ayre was ye worse for beinge soe good, & the fowler for beinge soe fayre: And where he inuerts the words of our Sauiour Messis magna, operarij paucj, says Chr: Here is a grete greate haruest but few Laborers: but operarij multj, messis parua, [fol. 19r] says Bassill, here are Workemen enough, but noe Haruest to gather. In yt Homily he notes a barrennesse in yt wch vsed to be fruitfull, & frutefullnesse in yt wch. vsed to be barren. Terra sterilis et aurum fœcundum (ye Earth was barren, & Gould was fruitfull) He prophecied of our times, when not onely soe many Familys haue halfe ye Contry for ye Citty in theyre Persons, but haue brought theyre lands into ye Citty they haue brought all theyre Euidences into ye Scriuoners shopps, & changed all theyre renewinge of Leases euery 7 yeares, into renewinge of Bondes euery 8 Moneths. They haue taken away to inflict barronnesse vppon land, & extort a fruitfullnesse from Gold by Vsiry. Monsters may be gott by vnnaturall mixtures but [fol. 19v] there is noe race noe propogation of Monsters; Mony may be raysed by this kinde of vse, but non hærebit, it is the sweate of other men and it will not stick to thine heire, Nay communly it bringes not that outward blessinge of Plenty wth. it: For for the most part, we se noe man liue more pennuriously, more sordidly, then thease men doe.

The 3d. of thease Temporall blessinges is health, without which both ye other are noe more to any man then ye Rainebow was to him who was ready to drowne Quid mihj, sj peream ego, sayes he, wt am I ye better yt God hath past his word & sett to his Seale in ye Heauens, yt he will drowne the world noe more, if I bee drowned my selfe? Wt’s all yeworld Peace in ye World to me, if I haue Rebellions & [fol. 20r] Earthquakes of shakinge & burninge in my selfe Feauers in my body? Wt’s all ye Plenty in the world to me, yf I haue a Languishinge Consumption in my bloud & in my marrow? The Heathens had a Goddesse to whom they attributed ye care of ye body Deam Carnam. And we yt are Christians acknowledge Gods first Care of man was his body, he made yt first, and his last care was is reserued for his body too, at ye Last Resurrection, wch is principally for the benifitt of ye body. There is a care belongs to the  health of & comelynesse of the body. When ye Romans canonized Pallore[m] & Febrium, Palenesse & Feuer, & made ym Gods, they would as faine haue made [fol. 20v] them Diuells yf they durst to haue they worshipped them onely because they feared ym. Sicknesse is a second sword of God, & health is his blessinge; for when Ezekiah had assurance enough yt he should recouer & liue, yet he had still a sence of misery in yt he should not haue a perfect state of health. What Esay. 38. shall I say? sayes he, I shall walke weakely all my yeares, in ye bitternesse of my Soule. All Temporall blessinges are insipid & lastlesse wthout Health.

In Quib[us]: Personis.Now ye 3d. branch of this part is ye other In quibus, not the things, but the Persons in whome these 3 blessinges are heere plac’d: & it is Beat[us] Popul[us], when this blessinge reaches to all, dilates it selfe ouer all. When Dauid places Blessednesse in one particular man, as [fol. 21r] he doth in the beginninge of ye first Psalme, Beat[us] vir, blessed is yt man, there he pronounseth yt man blessed, yf he neither walke in ye Councell of ye wicked, nor stand in ye way of Sinners nor sitt in ye Seate of ye Scornfull; If he doe not all (sit, stand, walke, in the feare of God) he is not blessed. Soe yf thease Temporall blessinges, fall not vppon all in there Proportions the People is not blessed. The Citty may be blessed in ye increase of Suites accesse, & ye Lawyer may be blessed in ye increase of Suites, & ye Merchant may be blessed in ye increase of Meanes of gettinge, yf he come to get as well by trading takinge as tradinge; but yf all be not blessed ye People is not blessed: yea yf these Temporall blessinges reach not to ye Prince [fol. 21v] himselfe, the People are not blessed. For in fauorabilibus Princeps e populo, is a good rule in ye Law. In things benificiall, ye kinge is one of ye People. when God sayth by Dauid, Let all the ^people^ Blesse ye Lord, he doth not exempt the kinge from yt duty, & when God sayes by him too, God shall blesse all ye People, God doth not exempt not exclude kings from yt benifitt. And therfore where such thinges conduce to ye beinge, and well beinge, to ye substance & State, to yeSeremony Cerymony & Matie. of the Prince, be not cheefrefully supplyed & seasonably administred there, yt blessing is not fully fallen vppon ym. Blessed are ye People yt are soe, for ye People are not so, yf ye Prince be not so. Nay ye People are not blessed, yf ye blessinge [fol. 22r] be not permanent. For it is not onely they that are aliue now, yt are ye People; but ye People is ye succession. Yf we could imagine of a blessinge of Peace wthout permanency, we might call a nights sleepe, though in ye midsts of an Army, Peace. But it is onely ye prouision for the permanency & continuance, yt makes thease blessinges. To thinke of, to prouide against Famine or sicknesse, & warr yts the blessinge of Plenty, health & Peace. One of Christs principall titles was yt he was Princeps Paijs; & yet this Prince Peace sayes Non, venj mittere Pace[m], I come not to bringe you Peace, not such a Peace as should bringe the security against all Warr. If a Shipp take fier, though in the midst of the Sea, it consumes sooner & more irruocably, then a thatched house vppon [fol. 22v] Land. Yf God cast a fierbrand of warr vppon a State accustomed to Peace, it burnes the more desperatly by theyre former kind security. But here in our Text we haue a religious Kinge Dauid yt first prayes for thease blessinges (for the 8 former Verses are a Prayer) & then Prayses for the acknowledgmt of them: For this Text is an Acclamatory, a Gratulatory glorifyinge God for them. And when these two meete in the Consideration of Temporall blessinges, A religious care for them, a religious confessinge of ym. Prayer to God for ye gettinge, of Prayse to God for ye haueinge, Blessed is that People, yt is, head & members, Prince & Subiect, present & future people yt are soe, soe blessed, so thankful for theyre blessinges.

[fol. 23r] We come now ad dextra[m] dextr[æ]2 Part.to the right blessinge in the right sence & acception of these wordes, to spirittuall blessednesse the blessednesse of the Soule. Est ne cura de Bobus 1 Cor. 9. 9.(hath God care of Oxen) is ye Apostles Question? And his Answere is pregnantly imployed, God hath care of beasts, but ....yett God cared more for our soules yn for those 2000 hoggs wch he suffered to perish in the Sea when yt man was disposessed. A Dram[m]e of Spirittuall, is worth infinite talents of Temporall: ^blessinges^ Heere then in this Spirittuall blessednesse, as we did in the former, we shall looke first (Quid beatitudo, wt it is, & then in Quib[us], in wt it is placed heere vt De[us] eoru[m] sit Domin[us], yt theyre God be ye Lord, and lastly, ye extent of it, yt all ye People be made partakers of this Spirittuall blessednesse.

[fol. 23v] Beatitudo This blessednesse then yu se is placed Last in the Text not yt it is can not be had till our end till the next Life; In this case ye Nemo ante obitu[m] fayles, for it is in this Life yt we must finde o[u]r God to be ye Lord, or els yf we know not yt heere, we shall meete wth his Nescio vos; He will not know vs. But it is placed last because it is ye weightiest, & ye vttermost of degree of Blessednesse wch can be had to haue ye Lord our God. Consider ye makinge vp of a naturall man & you shall see yt he is a conuenient Tipe of of a Spirittuall man too: First in ye Naturall man we conceiue there is a Soule of vegetatio[n] & of growth; & 2ly. there is a Soule of motio[n] & Sence; & 3ly. there is a Soule of Reason & vnderstandinge an immortall Soule, yt is immediatly infused by God. Consider ye Blessednesse of this Text [fol. 24r] in such degrees, such proportions. First God blesseth a man wth. Riches, there is his Soule of vegetation & growth, by yt he growes in estimatio[n] and in one kinde of ability true ability to produce good fruits; for he hath wherwithall. And then God giues this rich Man ye blessinge of vnderstandinge his Riches, how to employ the[m] accordinge to those morrall & Ciuill dutyes wch apperteine vnto him, & ther’s his Suole of Sence. For many Rich men haue not this Sence: Many rich Men vnderstand notheyr Riches noe more then the Okes of the Forrest doe theyre owne Acornes. But last of all God giues him ye blessinge of discerninge ye mercy & purpose of God in giuinge him these Temporall blessinges and ther is his Immortall Soule. [fol. 24v] Now for the Riches ym selues (wich is his first Suooule) he may haue them, ex traduce, by deuolution afrom his Parents, & ye Ciuil wisedome how to gouerne his Riches, to purchase, where to sell, where to giue, where to take (wch is his 2d soule) this he may haue by his owne acquisitio[n] & experience, & conuersation. But his Immortall Soule, ytis his discerninge of Gods Image in euery peece, & of ye Seale of Gods Loue in aeuery Temporall blessinge; this is infused by God alone, & ariseth neither from Parents, neither from the wisedome of God this world; how worldly wise soeu[er] we be in gouerninge o[u]r Estate. And this the Prophet may very well seeme to haue intimated, when hee Psal. 112.1 sayth. The Generation of ye Righteous shalbe blessed: heere is a permanent [fol. 25r] blessednesse, to ye generation wherin it is expressed? Thus Riches & Tresure shalbe in his House, & his righteousnesse endures for eu[er]. He doth not say yt Simony or Vsury, or Extortio[n] shalbe in his house; for riches got soe are not Tresure: Nor he doeth not say yt Riches well gott & wch are truly a blessinge shall remaine for eu[er]. But his righteousnesse shall endure for eu[er] The last Soule the Immortall Soule endures for eu[er]. The blessednesse of haueinge studdied, and Lerned, & practised ye knowledge of Gods purposes in Temporall blessinges, this blessednesse shall endure for eu[er]. When thou shalt turne from thy Left vnto thy right side vppon thy Death bed, from all ye honors & riches of this world, to breath thy Soule into his hands who gaue it; this righteousnese [fol. 25v] this good Conscience shall endure then, & then accompany thee. And when thine eyes are closed, & in ye twicklinge of his eye yt closed thine, thy Soule shalbe gon an infinite way from this honor, & these riches; this Righteousnese this good Conscience, shall endure then, & meete thee in the gates of Heauen. And this is soe much of yt Righteousnese as is expressed in ye Text; because this is ye foote of all, That o[u]r God be ye Lord.

In Quib[us]:In wch first we must consider propose a God, yt there is one, & then appropriate this God to our selues yt he be our God, & lastly be sure, yt we haue ye right God, yt our God be ye Lord. For for ye first, He yt enterpriseth any thinge, seakes any thinge, posseseth any thinge wthout recourse to God, wth out acckowl [fol. 26r] acknowledginge God in yt Action, he is an Athist. If he be an Athist euery where but in his Catich.isme, if onely then he confesse a God, when he is asked doest thou beleeue yt there is a God, & neu[er] confesse him neu[er] consider him in his Actions; It shall doe him noe good at the last day to say he was a speculatiue Athist, He neu[er] thaught in his hart yt there was noe God, yf he liue a practiq[ue] Athist, proceedes in all his Actions wthout any Consideration of him. But accustome thy selfe to finde ye p[re]sence of God in all thy gettings in all thy p[re]fermts., in all thy Studdyes, & he wilbe sufficiently aboundant to thee for all Quantum Libet, sis auarus (sayes St. Augustine) sufficit tibi Deus, [fol. 26v] be as couetious as thou wilt, be as ambitious as thou canst, the more ye better: God is Treasure, God is Honor enough for thee. Auaritia Terra[m] quærit, sayth ye same Father adde et Cœlum; wouldst thou haue all this world? wouldst thou haue all the next world too? Plus est qui fæcit cœlum et terra[m] He yt made ye Heauen & ye Earth, is more then all yt, And thou mayst haue all him.

Noster.And this appropriates him soe neare to vs as yt he is therby Deus Noster: For it is not enough to finde Deu[m], a God, a greate & incomprehensible Power wch sitts in Luce, in Light; but in Luce ue inaccessible, a light yt we cannot comprehend. A God yt enjoyes his owne eternity, his owne Peace his owne Blessednesse, respects not vs, reflects not vppon vs, [fol. 27r] communicates nothinge to vs. But it is a God yt is Deus noster, Our’s as we are his Creatures, Our’s as we alre like him, made to his Image, Our’s as he is like vs in assuminge our shape Nature Our’s as he hath descended to vs in his Incarnation, & ours as we are ascended wth him in his gloryfication. Soe yt wee doe not consider God as our God, except wee come to the consideration of God in Christ. God & Man. It is not enough to find Deu[m] a God in generall; nor to finde Deu[m] meu[m], a God soe particularly mine, as yt he is a God of my makeinge, yt I should seeke God by any other motions, or worshipp God by in any other fashions, yn ye true Church of God doth; for there he is Deus Noster, as he is receiued in the vnanimous consent of ye Catholiq[ue] Church. Sects are not boughs ^bodyes^ [fol. 27v] they are but rotten boughs, gangreened Limbes, fragmentary chippes, blowne of by theyre owne Spirritt of turbulency, fallen of by ye weight of theyre owne Pride, or hewen of by ye Excom[m]unicatio[n] & Censures of ye Church. Sects are noe bodyes they are but rotten for there is nihil nostrum, nothinge in commune amongst ym, nothinge yt goes through ym. all. All is singular, all is meu[m] et tuum, my Spiritt, & thy Spiritt, my opinon, & thy oppinion, my god, & thy God; noe such  apprehension, noe such worshipp of God, as the whole Church hath bine euermore acquainted wthall & contented wth. It is true yt eu[er]y man might appropriate God soe narrowly, as to finde him Deum suum, his God, yt all ye promises of ye Prophetts, all ye performanses of ye Gospell, all that [fol. 28r] Christ Iesus sayde, & did, & sufferred, belongs to him, & his soule. But yet God is Deus meus, as he is Deus noster my God, as he is our god; as I am meus as he is Deus noster a part of yt Church wth. wch. he hath promised to be till ye end of ye world; & as I am an obedient sonne of yt mother wch is ye Spouse of Chr: Iesus. For as St. August: sayes. of yt Petition, Giue vs this Day our dayly bread vnde dicimus De nostrum, How come wee to aske yt wch is ours? Quomodo Nostru[m]? Quomodo da? yf we be put to aske it, how is it ours? And then answers himselfe, Tuum confitendo non eris ingratus, It is a thankfull part to confesse thou hast some, yt thou hast receiued some blessinge, And yn Ab illo [fol. 28v] petendo non eris vacuus. It is a wise and prouident part to ask more of him whose store is inexhaustible. So yf I feele God, as he is Deus meus, as his Spiritt workes in me, & thankfully acknowledge yt, non sum ingratus. But yf I deriue this pipe from ye Cistern, This Deus meus from Deus Noster, my knowledge & sence of God, from the knowledge wch is com[m]unicated by his Church in the Preachinge of his word, in ye administration of his Sacraments, in those other meanes. which he hath instituted in his Church for ye Assistance & repayration of my Soule, yt way, Non ero vacuus, I shall haue a fuller satisfaction, a more aboundant perfection yn yf I rely vppon my priuate inspirations For there he is Deus Noster.

[fol. 29r] Now as wee are thus to acknowledge DominusGod, & thus to appropriate yt God, soe wee must be sure to conferr this honor vppon ye right God, vppon him who is the Lord. Now this name of God, wch is translated Lord heere, is not the name of God wch. presents him wth relation to his Creatures, For soe it is a Problematicall, a disputable thinge, whether God could be called the Lord before there were any Creatures. Tertullian denyes absolutly yt he could be called Lord till then. St Augustine is more moddest, he sayes, Non audeo dicere, I dare not say yt he was not, but he does not affirme yt he was. Howsoeuer, the name heere is not the name of Relatio[n], but it is ye name of his Essence, of his Eternity, yt Name, wch of late hath bin ordinarily called Jehouah. Soe yt we are not [fol. 29v] to trust to those Lordes whose breath is in there nostrells, as the Prophett sayes, for wherein are they to be esteemed? sayes he we are wesse to trust in ym, whose breth was neuer in there nostrells, such imaginary Sts. as are soe farr from heereinge vs in heauen, as yt they are not there, and soe far from beinge there, as yt they were neu[er] heere So farr from being Sts. as yt they were neu[er] men, but are either Fabulous illusions, or at least, but symbolicall & allegoricall allusions. Our Lord is ye Lord of Life, & beinge, who gaue vs not onely our welbeinge in this Life (for that other Lords can pretend to doe, & doe indeede by preferment heere) nor a begininge of a Temporary beinge in this Life (for yt our Parents pretend truly to haue donne) nor onely an enlarginge of our beinge [fol. 30r] in this Life (for yt ye Kinge can doe by a pardon, & ye Physisians by a Cordiall) but he hath giuen vs an Immortall beinge, wch neither our Parents begine in vs, nor greate Persons aduaunce for vs, nor any Prince canne take from vs. This is ye Lord in this Place, & this Esay. 4. is Jehouah, & Germen Jehovæh, The Lord & ye offspringe of the Lord, & none is of the offspringe of the Lord, but God yt is ye Sonne & ye Holy Ghost. Soe yt this perfect Blessednesse consists in this, The true knowledge & worshipp of the Trinity.

And this blessinge, yt is ye true Religion Popul[us] of Chr: Iesus, is to be vppon all the People; wch is our last Consideration. Blesed is the Nation whose God is the Lord, & the People whome he hath [fol. 30v] chosen to be his Inheritance. And heere againe (as in ye former Consideration of Temporall blessednesse) the People includes all the People both Prince & People; & yn the blessinge consists in this That both Prince & People be syncerely affected one to ye true Religion And then ye People: And then ye People includes all ye people, And soe ye blessing consists in this, yt there be an vnanimity, a consent in all, in matter of Religion. And lastly ye People includes ye future People, & there ye blessinge consists in this, That our Posterity may enioy the same purety of Religion yt we doe. The first Tentation yt fell among ye Apostles, carried away one of them; Judas was transported wth ye tentation of Mony; & how much? for [fol. 31r] 30 peeces. And in all likelyhoode he might haue made more profitt yn yt out of the priuy purse. The first Tentation carried one, & the first Persecution carried away 9 when Chr: was apprehended, none were left but tow, & of one of these 2 St Jerome sayes Vtinam fugisset et non negasset Christum, I would Peter had fled too, & had not scandalized the cause more by his stay in denyinge his Master. For a man may stay in the outward profession of true Religion wth such purposes & such ends, as he may thereby the more damnify the Cause, & damnify his Soule more yn yf he went away to yt Religion, to wch his Conscience (though ill rectifyed) directs him.

[fol. 31v] Now though when such Tentations & when such Persecutions doe come, ye wordes of our Sauiour Christ will allwayes be true Feare not little Flocke, for it is Gods pleasure to giue you ye kingdome: Though God can lay vp his seede-corne in any little corner: yet the blessinge included heere is not in yt little seede-corne nor in ye corner, but in ye Plenty when all the People are blessed, And ye blessed spirrit blowes where he will & noe dore noe windowe is shutt against him. And therefore lett vs blesse God for ye greate mercy blessinge to vs, in giuing vs such Princes as make it theyr care, Ne bona caduca sint ne Mala recidiua, That ye blessinge wch we enioy by them, may neu[er]bdepart from vs, yt those miserys wch we felt before ym. may neu[er] returne to vs.

[fol. 32r] Almighty God make allwayes to vs, all to vs all, Prince, & People, these Temporall blessinges, wch we enioy now, Peace & Plenty, & Health, seales of his Spirrittuall blessinges: And that Spirrittuall blessednesse wch we e[n]ioy now ye Profession of ye onely true Religion, & seale of it selfe, a seale of those Eternall blessinges, wch the Lord ye righteous Iudge hath layde vp for vs in yt kingdome wch his Sonne, our Sauiour hath purchased for vs wth the inestimable price of his incorruptible bloud.

To wch glorious sonne of God. &c


Publishing statement

Publisher: The Oxford Edition of the Sermons of John Donne
General Editor: Peter McCullough
Funder: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Availability: This XML document is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 License.

Transcription notes

Transcription by Erica Longfellow.

Transcription proofread and technical description by Mary Morrissey.

Transcription checked and coded by Elizabeth Williamson.

The Manuscript

Institution: St Paul's Cathedral Library, London
Shelfmark: MS 52.D.14
OESJD siglum: P

Manuscript Content

Item no: 1
Locus: ff. 3r-32r
Title: Psalme.144. Verse.15: Blessed are the people yt be soe yea blessed are ye People whose God is the Lord.
Incipit: The first part of this Text hath
Explicit: inestimable price of his incorruptible bloud.
Final Rubric: To wch glorious sonne of God. &c Finis.
Bibliography: OESJD Vol. II.5; P&S Vol. III.2
Note: Textual matter around the sermons: Title page, f.1r 'SERMONS MADE BY I. Donne. doctor of Deuinty & Deane of Pauls - Ano: Domini: 1625. Kni: Chetwode'

Item no: 2
Locus: ff. 33r-60r
Title: 1 Timothy: 3:16. And, wthout Controuersy, greate is the Mystery of Godlynesse: God was manifest in the flesh, Justifyed in ye Spirrit, seene of Angells, preached vnto the Gentills, Beleeued in the world, Receiued into Glory
Incipit: This is noe Text for an Howre-glasse.
Explicit: bloude.
Final Rubric: To wch: the glorious sonne of God &c. Finis
Bibliography: OESJD Vol. II.6; P&S Vol. III.9
Note: Textual matter around the sermons: Slip of paper pasted into the left margin of f.33r: 'This sermon I could not finde, in either of the two volumes.'. Title page, f.32v '1625. The Second Sermon Preached by John Donne Dotr: of Deuinity & Deane of PAVLS KNIGHTLEY CHETWODE'

Item no: 3
Locus: ff. 80r-105r
Title: Hosea 2.5.19 I will mary thee vnto me for euer
Incipit: The word, which is the hinge on
Explicit: corruptible bloud.
Final Rubric: To whome wth the father &c. Finis.
Bibliography: OESJD VII.2; P&S Vol. III.11
Note: Textual matter around the sermons: Title page, f.79v: '1626. THE FOVRth SERMON by John Donne Doctor of Deuinity & Deane of Paules - Knightley Chetwode'. Comment on f.79v: 'Preached at St: Clements at Mr: Washingtons Mariage'

Item no: 4
Locus: ff. 106r-177r
Title: 2 Cor: 4.6. Preached at the Spittle on Easter Monday 1622. For God who Commaunded light to shine out of darknesse hath shined in or Hartes, to giue ye light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in ye face of Iesus Christ
Incipit: The first booke of ye Bible begins wth the
Explicit: face of Iesus Christ.
Final Rubric: FINIS.
Bibliography: OESJD Vol. VIII.2; P&S Vol. IV.3
Note: Textual matter around the sermons: Slip of paper pasted into the left margin of f.105r: 'This sermon I could not finde, in either of the two volumes.'. Title page, f.104v: 'THE F SERMon by Iohn Donne Doctor of Deuinity & Deane of Paules - Knightley Chetwode: Anno Domi: 1625'. End of sermon, f.177r: 'Knightley Chetwode'

Physical Description

Material: Paper, quarto, 277 leaves 200 X 150 mm.
Foliation: The manuscript has recently been foliated by Mr Wisdom, Librarian, and Mr Wisdom’s foliation (taking the page with Katherine Butler’s ownership mark as f. 1) has been observed in the transcription following. The manuscript reverses at f. 230, with ff. 196-230r being blank.
Collation: There are no signatures. There appears to be extensive and complex quiring, which, combined with the tight binding, makes it practically impossible to work out the collation.
Condition: The manuscript is in excellent condition.

Hand(s) description

Hand 1, responsible for materials on ff. 3-174r, belongs Knightley Chetwode. This copyist of the four Donne sermons and the court sermon by Joseph Hall signs his name on the title page (either fully or with initials) of each sermon. His hand is a mix of late secretary and round hand features, and is neat and easily legible. He uses black and brown ink, with multiple changes throughout the volume, including in some cases between the body of the text and marginal comments, marginal corrections, and supralinear corrections, for example on f.49v-50r. Chetwood finally wrote some elaborately flourished additions, like the title page on f. 105v or the 'Finis' on f. 177r.

Hand 2 is unknown, and responsible for some supralinear correction and comments on pasted slips: ff.33r, 37r, 105r.

Hand 3 is unknown, and responsible for some supralinear corrections on ff. 110v, 135v. There are yet other hands in the manuscript, most notedly that of Katherine Butler, who inherited the manuscript and turned it into a commonplace book. However, since none of these other hands in the manuscript contribute to Donne's sermons, they are not further described here.

This XML document is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 License