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so, you may find it in some of the books with a very littl, trouble. Most of my works have a short plain, and explanation thereto, But for to suit your case, you must look to the title of these books, and then you will find that the subjects and passages of the Scriptures which fol. low after have an allusion thereto ; and again, all these books bave been written by myselt, who hath been taught by the spirit of God from a child, and I am a man who hath endured harishius and hath experienced many trials and troubles in this lite Therefore my works are for the comfort and support of them who have endured the same, and it also holds forth an exhortation to sinners to turn to God, that they may obtain mercy through our blessed Lord and Saviour. Not bigoted in this work; not biassed here by any particular sex or party; or for self-interest; free from partiality, except there be a just cause or reason. ļ wish to bear part with all. I wish to follow on with all as far forth as they follow Christ and his Examples, have in this work the plain word of God, set forth in its truth apd reality, and at last my desire is to sum it up in this, and that is to say, I believe the right author of this work is God. Therefore let no one dare to despise it, for fear, Jest God should despise you for so doing. But may it prove a blessing to all your souls through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Now the time which I have been about this work as near as I can teil, hath been about twelve or fifteen years. But still I bave not been all these years fully employed about this work, because I heve been brought up to hard laborious work until this present time, and have been obliged to work Biard for the support of myself and my family. But this work, ihat is, these boobs, have been written on wet days and on winter evenings, and on the Sabbath days, and in all the spare time that I could get, and this work hath been done in secret from the world, ibat is to say, no one knew of it but God and myself. I have written it according as I was taught, by the Spirit of his Grace, and now I cannot say that this work altogether hath not been more than 15 years about For I have soma 'idea that the Spirit of the liv.uy God according to my experience was working within me, even from a Child, 1o the intent that I should accoinplish this work and to bring it to pass.
And mav it, by the Grace of God, prove a blessing to all your souls who' read or hear it, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
BOOK THE FIRST.
Cook's Counsel to his Sons, composed according to the Holy Scriptures, of Wisdom and Instruction, adapted in a plain, easy, and suitable way for the lowest capacity of
mind and understanding.
DEARLY Beloved CHILDREN & CHRISTIAN FRIENDS.
For as much as the Lord hath freely given me this treasure into the bosom of my soul, therefore I hope and trust by his Heavenly Grace through Christ, that I shall be thankful and praise hina withal for evermore. Amen. And as the spirit of Elijah, which was from the Lord, did rest upon Elisha, even so O Lord may thy Holy Spirit rest upon every soul that delighteth in reading, or in hearing these words which are written in this book, and in all the books which I have, by thy help written down, and according to your obedience and faith in Christ you may expect it to be, even so be it Lord Jesus. Amen.
Now my dear Children, I must soon go the way of all flesh, and I hope and ti ust in my redeemer, that I shall land safe at my Father's House, where the wicked cease from troubling, and there the weary are for ever at rest. Job. iii, 17. My litile children, when you are children, you think as children, and do as children, but be sure to give hear to the words of your dear parents, and obey all their good commards, and as soon as you tind the grace of God discovers itself in your soul, and reason takes possession there, then be thou sure that thon do embrace it, for it is your first call of that Almighty Being which hath made you a living soul, and hath blest you and hath given you grace and reason to consider things aright, so that you may discern the truth and falsehood of things. And now by this time you may begin to wonder, and that with admiration, to behold the heaven and the earth and the contents of them, and when you begin to consider upon these things you may be almost surprised, and say, O Father, what do the heaven and the earth coutain. My son, this earth con1ains in her a vast variety of good, rich, and useful things; and there are so many so that I have not lime to speak of them all, neither can I comprehend them all. But this I believe that God hath provided all ibese excellent things for the comfort, convenience, and use of his creature, mau. And again, when we survey the surface of the earth are not we astonished to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living, for here we see the fowls of the air and the fishes of the sea, and all these useful animals as catile or beasts that feed upon the green pastures. My son, that Almighty, the wise and good being bath created all tbese things and provided them for us, and hath made them chean for our eating, and profitable and suitable for our use and service. Be ye sure my children and brethren to use all these things with mercy and kinduess and discretion, for remember that God hath given them unto you for your use and service, and he hath put them under your care and keeping. Gen, ix, 2. 'I herefore be merciful unto them, for remember that a merciful man hath mercy upon his dumb beast. Prov, xï, 10. And if any of you by your proud, wieked, cruel, and unmerciful lusts do abuse these dumb animals which God halb given you for your use and service, I say if you abuse them and use them cruel and that unlawfully without any proper occasion, cause or reason, then it surely shall be a sin unto you, for he shall have judgment without mercy that hath shewed no mercy, and mercy rejoiceth against judgment. James ii, 13. And again, look and behold, my son, how that the Lord thy God bath stocked and furnished and supplied our wants, and that by surnishing the earth with all kinds of precious fruits and plants, and seeds, and all for our use, service, and eating. Therefore, my sons, let us praise Hiin sor all ibis, and say, O how sweet is thy loving kindness O Lord, therefore the children of men niay put their cust under the shadow of by wing. Again, my son, see how the Heavens declare the goodness of ihe Lord, and how the firmaments show furth his handy works; O behold the beauty of Heaven, the glory of the stars, and ornaments giving light in the high places of the Lord, at the commandment of the holy one, They will stand in their order and never faint in their watch.
O how curious is the moon which ruleth in the night sea
O how wise is he that hath made her, it is said that he made the moon also, to serve in her season, for a declaration of times and a sign of the world. From the moon is the sigu of feasts, a light that decreaseth in her perfection; the month is called aller her name, she increaseih wonderfully in her chauging, being instrument of the armies above, shin. ing in the firmanents of heaven. O the heavens are filled with thy glory, O Lord. O bow beautiful and glorious is the sun, which giveth us light and heat, and see how she causeth the bud 10 push or come forth, and behold that by her heat how she warmeth the sweet showers of rain, so that all plants and seeds spring forth out of the earth, which show unto us a beautiful aspect of support and comfort. And all these things, my son, show forib the goodness and lender piercy of our God, and speaking of the sun we hear and see how that by her warmth she causeth the beautiful birds and the fowls of the air to sing with barmonious notes, and they do praise their maker in the warm spring season; and again, in a temporal sense, iht sup in her course and powerful seasons reviveth or refreshed and causeth all the whole creation to rejoice in a variety of ways together, and many their be in this world, it is said, that do worship the
But, my son, worship not the sun, neither the mooil, por the stars, nor any other thing which is created under heaven. Exod. xx. But worship the Lord thy God wbicit baib made thee a living soul, and it is he that hath wade and created all these excellent things aforesaid for our supe port, use, confort, and employment that we may serve him witbal, and above ail, for he is our God and Saviour, if ne love and serve him and shall be for evermore. But noi. withstanding, my son, if you consider aright, you will find yourself to be a fallen cieature, and that you have a de. praved and a corrupt and a sintui nature, that is oftentimes ready to lead you astray from that blessed being which hath provided for us all those excellent things, and when you look upon the beautiful flowers of the field, do you vot ihink that they appear more pure and clean and innocent ihan yourself; yes, they do, and when I have loohed upou the sweet bud and blossom, and have seen how beautius aud pure, and sweet, and clean they are, I have said io niy soul, o that thou was as sweet, and as clean, and as jure, aud as inuocent, in the sight of thy naker as these swttt
blossoms are in my sight. Omethinks bow happy then should I be, for surely they denote that he is pure, and holy, and lovely, that hath made them to bud and to blossom, and to grow. But yet thy maker bath esteemed thee above them all, and hath given them to thee as a perfunie, and for thy comfort, and support, and enjoyment, and amusement; and yet thou are by nature a thousand times more vile in thy nature than they. But my soul, was this always the case of man from the beginning, surely not. For at the beginning when the soul of man came forth from the pure hand of his maker, he was as pure, and as clean, and as innocent, and as sweet, and as lovely, as any of the sweet blossoms which we behold on the face of the earth. But why is the cause we are become so vile and so wicked, and so impure now? Why, my son, it is an enemy which is called the devil, that hath been the cause of this in one sense, and m disobedience in another. Now, when the bud and blossom of man begins to appear and to open itself in the world, then the devil by a subtile and cunoing device, gained admittance to enter upon the sweet bud and blossom of his soul, and so stinged it with a deadly poison; for be left his deadly poison, which is sin ; for the sting of death is sin. I say then the devil left this sting of death in the very essence of his soul, so that the bud and blossom, which is the soul of man, is become corrupt and vile in the sight of his inaker. And now, instead of its bringing forth good seed or fruit, it brings forth corrupt seed and fruit; and instead of bis bringing forth good grapes, he brings forth wild grapes. Isaiahl. v. 2. Therefore the whole offspring of Adam is fallen from the pure and lovely image of his maker, therefore if we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 1 Epistle of John, i. 8. For it is said that there is no man that sinneth not. 1 Kings, viii, 46. And who can say I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sins. Prov.
For there is not a just man upon the earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not. Eccl. vii, 20.
For the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, who can know it but the Lord. Jer, xvii, 9. Man was once like the sweet apple-tree, when it is in sweet bloom in the orchard; but now he is become vile, and as mean as the netile that groweth ou the backside of the baru aud the hovel. Yea, man in his first state was more clean and