Die honourably, or live basely! -- Jeremiah Burroughs

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VirginiaHuguenot

Puritanboard Librarian
Jeremiah Burroughs, An Exposition of the Prophecy of Hosea, p. 16 (on Hos. 1.6):

And when men's spirits are effiminate with respect to the civil state, they quickly grow so in regard of their consciences, and religion too. Purity of religion in the church cannot stand long with slavery admitted in the state. We read, Rev. iv.7, of four ages of the church set out by four living creatures: the third living creature had the face of a man, and that was to note the state of the church in the time of reformation; they began then to be of manly spirits, and to cast off that yoke of bondage which was upon them, to inquire after what liberty God had granted to them. Not like those we read of, Isa. li.23, that would obey such as would say to their souls, "Bow down, that we may go over."

This, my brethren, was the condition of many of us; there has been that effiminateness of spirit in us that we have bowed down our necks, yea, our souls, to those that would go over us; yea, as it is in Isa. li.23, they made themselves the very street to them that went over them, their very consciences were trampled upon by the foot of pride, and all for the enjoyment of a little outward accomodation in their estates, in their shops, and in their trading; O, they dare not venture these, rather yield to any thing in the world. And truly we were afraid, not long since, that God was calling us by the name of this daughter Lo-ruhamah, for our effiminateness of spirit; that the Lord was departing from our nation. But blessed be God, that now there is a rising of spirit among us, especially among our worthies in parliament; and their warmth, and vigour, and life have put warmth, vigour, and spirit into the whole kingdom. Now our kingdom will never bow down and submit their consciences, nor estates, nor liberties, to the former bondage and oppression. No, they had rather die honourably than live basely. By why do I make such a disjunction? Die honourably, and live basely! Had we spirits we might free ourselves and posterity from living basely, and we need not die at all; for the malignant party has neither spirit to act nor power to prevail: if we keep up our spirits and are strong in the Lord, we are safe enough, we shall not have our name Lo-ruhamah, but Ruhamah; the Lord will have mercy upon us.
 
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