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Corrected Date of Publication (TCP Date of Publication)
A patheticall perswasion to pray for publick peace: propounded in a sermon preached in the cathedrall church of Saint Paul, Octob. 2. 1642. By Matthew Griffith, rector of S. Mary Magdalens neer Old-Fishstreet, London.
Griffith, Matthew, 1599?-1665.
Wing G2016; Thomason E122_17; ESTC R4434
17.11 though it be but private for as Solomon speaks in the 17 of the Proverbs Better is a dry morsell of bread if peace be with it then a house full of sacrifices with strife and contention But as every good thing the more common it is the better it is Luk. 1 74. so publike peace is a far greater blessing for hereby we enjoy that excellent priviledge which Zachary sings of in the first Chap. of S. Luke viz. That being delivered from the hands of our enemies we may serve God without fear in holinesse and righteousnesse all the dayes of our lives And yet if we ascend a degree or two higher viz. to the consideration either of Internall peace of the minde and conscience here Ephes 4 7. or of that Eternall peace which is promised us hereafter we must needs acknowledge each of these to be that Peace of God which passeth all understanding But passing over these two last Branches of good peace as not being aim'd at by the Psalmist in the Text I will keep my self onely to this outward publike peace which we are all here exhorted to pray for And however this outward peace in respect of each mans particular be not so rich a blessing as the inward yet such and so great it is in it self that Artaxerxes by the very light of Nature said Peace is such a good thing as all men desire Pacem te poscimus omnes And S. Paul in the second Chapter of the first Epistle to Timothy proposeth it as the chief Motive why we should pray for Kings 1 Tim 2.2 and all that be in Authority viz. That under them we may lead a peaceable and quiet life in all godlinesse and honesty As if the Civill Magistrates office had but these two ends viz. To settle Piety in the Church and Peace in the Common-wealth And the truth is That the Church and Common-wealth are so lincked together that the peace of the one doth redound to the other for as the Secretaries of Nature observe that the Marygold opens with the Sun and shuts with the shade even so when the Sun-beams of Peace shine upon the Common-wealth then by the reflection of those beams the Church dilates and spreads it self as in the 9 Chap. of the Acts Acts 9.31 Then had the Churches rest thorowout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria and were edified and walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the holy Ghost were multiplied Mark there how peace not onely edifies but multiplies the Church And on the other side when the Countries glory is once eclipsed then is the Churches beauty soon dimmed and clouded as all men whom the god of this world hath not blinded will confesse at this day they see plain enough in this languishing State Not without great reason therefore did the Lord command his peculiar people the Jews even in Captivity to pray for the peace and prosperity of the Babylonians in the 29 Chapter of Jeremy and that because ãâ¦ã peace thereof they should have peace ãâ¦ã Churches peace depends upon the peace of the Kingdom in which it is planted And accordingly it is the Churches prayer in the 144 Psalm that there may be no Invasion Ps 144.13 no leading into Captivity no complaining in our Streets And yet some phanatick Sectaries there be among us who having evill will at the peace and prosperity of this our Sion and being men of desperate opinions and despicable fortunes themselves count it good fishing in troubled waters Iudg. 17.2 not caring with Micah their good master how much they rend and tear the Churches garments so their own may be whole these in the exuberancy of their misgrounded and misguided zeal do both preach and pray against publike Peace Rom. 20.3 as inconsistent with the Independency or rather Anarchy they aim at and therefore even to hoarsenesse they cry down all fair wayes and means of Accommodation And not a few whom the Church and State finde to be a malignant party having little else to do make it now their trade to lye both by whole-sale and retayl they invent lyes and vent lyes they tell lyes and write lyes and print lyes and this they do as confidently and impudently as if they were informed by that lying spirit which entered as a Voluntier into Ahabs Prophets â Ki 22.22 and by lying and raising false rumours they beget jealousies and fears in the people that so they may foment the difference and enlarge the distance between His sacred Majesty and the Parliament and by blowing the coles which they themselves first kindled may at last set all in combustion and bring all to confusion And which makes the disease more desperate and the cure more doubtfull when any of the sons of peace hath convin'cd these Bountefues of disturbing the publike-weale against both law and conscience yet they palliate all by pretending the spirit as having some extraordinary Inspirations Illuminations Revelations of the spirit for all they do But since it appears by their seditious courses and pernicious practices that the way of peace they have not known Rom. 3.17 let all the world judge whether I may not justly apply unto these that which our Saviour himself said to some others instigating him to call for fire from heaven Luk. 9.55 in the 9 Chapter of Saint Luke ãâã ãâã ãâã ãâã ãâã c. They know not of what manner of spirit they are And all men else do now begin to know them by their fruits Had they bin a while in their forefathers coats Mat. 7.16 or felt they but the pressures of War as our dismayed and dismembered neighbouring Nations do yea but as bleeding Ireland doth at this day then sure they would soon be brought on their very knees to acknowledge That the most glorious Crown of gold in all the world is not worthy to be compared with the now so much contemned Garland of Peace God be thanked ever since the Reformation though our Sectaries will not allow it that Name untill they have throwly reformed both Church and State even to deformity we have lived in peace and plenty God be thanked we never knew what it is to hear the murdering Pieces about our ears or to see our Churches and houses flaming over our heads whilst the flame gave light to the mercilesse souldier to run away with our goods we never yet heard the fearfull cracks of their fals mixed with the confused out-cries of men killing encouraging to kill or resist and the hideous schriking of women children God be thanked we never saw tender babes snatch'd from the Brests of their mothers or ript out of their Wombs and ere they were a span long either panting on the stones of sprawling on the Pikes and the poor pure Virgin ravish'd ere she may have leave to die God be thanked we never saw men and beasts lie together wallowing in their gore and the gastly
That this spirit may make them all like Jethro's Magistrate men of courage fearing God and dealing truly so shall all their deliberations and determinations tend to the glory of God the reall honour and happinesse of His sacred Majesty and the peace and prosperity both of Church and Common-wealth To which I doubt not but all true Protestants will say Amen And thus having shewed first what you are here exhorted to do viz. to Pray and next for what you are exhorted to pray viz. for Peace It now onely remains that I acquaint you for whose peace it is that you are exhorted thus to pray viz. for the peace of Jerusalem for so stands the Text O pray for the peace of Jerusalem Jerusalem signifies the vision of peace It was the Metropolis of Palestina and it was so denominated from two parts in it one of which was call'd Jebus the Mount on which God commanded Abraham to offer up his son Isaac otherwise call'd Mount Moriah or Sion on which afterwards the Temple was built and Davids tower The other part was call'd Shalom and it was erected at first by Melchisedech King of Righteousnesse as Lyra notes in his Glosse on the 28 Chapter of Genesis And now if you put the two words expressing the two parts together it makes Jebushalom and for Euphonies sake Jerusalem And by this very name the holy Catholike Church is often set forth in Scripture as in the 41 Chapter of Isaiah Isa 4â 27 where God promiseth by his Prophet that he will give to Jerusalem one that brings good tidings that is a Saviour to the Church as Oleaster and others expound it And in the 4 Chapter to the Galathians Galat. 14.26 the Apostle saith that Jerusalem which is above is free which is the mother of us all Upon which words Hugo Cardinalis glosseth thus In hoc quod dicitur sursum notatur altitudo quod Jerusalem pacis multitudo quod libera libertatis amplitudo quod mater omnium charitas foecunditas that is In this that the Church is call'd Jerusalem is intimated multitude of peace that she 's said to be above denotes altitude of place that she is free shews her ample liberty and that she is the Mother of us all sets forth her charity and foecundity Jerusalem then is here a type of Christs Church for whose peace and prosperity we are bound in duty to pray continually Now the reasons why the Church of God is stil'd Jerusalem are many give me leave onely with a light pensil to touch some few of the chief For First as Jerusalem was the Metropolis of Palestina and all the Jews esteem'd it as their Mother so the Church is Mater credentium The Mother of all true beleevers as Saint Cyprian speaks Illius foetu nascimur saith he illius lacte nutrimur spiritu ejus animamur c. And so truly is she our Mother in a qualified sense that the same Saint Cyprian and after him Saint Augustine affirm peremptorily Non potest habere Deum patrem qui non habet ecclesiam matrem He cannot possibly have God to his Father who hath not the Church to his Mother And therefore no marvell though our present Sectaries which renouncing the Communion of the Church will have none of her to their Mother cannot endure to use the Lords prayer in which they must say Our Father Secondly as the Israelites were enjoyn'd by God at least three times every yeer to come Exod. 23.4 and appear before him in Jerusalem Even so are we all bound to meet in the Church which is the Congregation of all Christians and herein all true Christians do meet together in the unity of judgement and affection When God in the first Chapter of Genesis had gather'd together the waters unto one place Gen. 1.10 it is said that he saw that it was good And thereupon Saint Basil excellently notes that if the gathering together of the elementary waters was good then the gathering together of Gods people Apo. 17 15. who are the mysticall waters spoken of in the 17 of the Apocalypse must needs be very good yea if the one was good the other must needs be better And therefore I may truly say to such Sectaries as out of an affectation of singular holinesse separate themselves from the Church as sometimes Mr. Calvin himself did to the Anabaptists When under colour of perfection you can endure no imperfection neither in the body nor yet in the cloaths of the Church you must be admonish'd that this your seperation is caus'd by the devil who puffs you up with pride and seduceth you with hypocrisie Thirdly as Ierusalem was the chief seat both of the priesthood 1 King 9.10 and Kingdom for Salomon built the Temple and the Pallace together So in the Church there is both the Kingdom and Priesthood of Christ whereby both as a King he raigns over and as a Priest he instructs all the true Subjects and Citizens of the same Yea in the first Chapter of the Apocalyps Apoc. 16 he makes all the living members of his Church Kings and Priests in a qualified fence Or as St. Peter calls them 1. Pet. 2.9 a Royall priesthood Quid enim tam regium saith Leo quam subditum Deo animum corporis sui esse rectorem Quid tam sacerdotalâ quam immaculaâas piotaris âastias de altari cordis offerne Psal 76.2 Fourthly Jerusalem was the onely place in which God was known and worshipped His Temple was built there there he spake unto them both with his own mouth and by the mouth of his holy Prophets there was the Oracle between the Cherubins there was the chair of Moses and there the law was both duely propounded and eke truly expounded unto the people 1 Tim 3.15 And in the Church God is known and worship'd aright for this is the Pillar and Ground of Truth saith the Apostle That is The Church serves to the truth for those speciall ends and uses which pillars do to men For One use of pillars is to preserve the remembrance of things past to posterity to which end Absolom rear'd his pillar and thus doth the Church keep the truth of God as it were upon perpetuall record A second use of pillars is to expose to open view such things as are fastned upon them as in our Cathedralls the Arms Scutchions and Epitaphs of worthies deceas'd are hung upon pillars and such a kind of pillar is the Church to the truth for it exposeth all the Canonicall Books to the People of God A third use of pillars is for the supportation of the fabrick which is built upon them and such a pillar is the Church to the truth Gods true Religion and all truth necessary to salvation is to be had in the Church which doth indeed support the Common-wealth and therefore they which with Sampson in the 16th chapter of Judges thrust as this pillar with all their might will ere they be