By Jean Taffin
And of their Comforts in Afflictions.
This text has been initially updated from EEBO-TCP by Project Puritas (Logan West, with David Jonescue and Alex Sarrouf.) www.puritansearch.org. Further revision and editing done by Monergism. Copyright Monergism via universal text usage permission from the above.
The spirit beareth witness to our spirit that we are the sons of God. If we be sons, then are we also heirs, the heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ: so that we suffer together that we also may be glorified together. Rom 8.16.
Saint Paul hath very aptly set forth unto us the incomprehensible excellency of the felicity of the children of God, saying, That the eye hath not seen, the ear hath not heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, what things God hath prepared for those that love him. According to this sentence, Saint Augustine, tending to the same butt, saith of the goodness of grace: Let your hearts go beyond all that you are able to comprehend, and stay not yourselves at the greatness and excellency of it which you imagine: but say, yet this is not it; for if it were it, it could not enter into thy thought and heart. This happiness then cannot be comprehended by us according to the greatness and excellency of it, so long as we dwell in these earthly mansions, where we know God but in part and darkly. Notwithstanding, seeing the same Apostle addeth, that the holy Ghost who searcheth the most deep things of God, hath given us some revelation: Seeing also he prayed to God for the Ephesians; That he would open the eyes of their understanding, that they might know, what is the hope of their vocation, and what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance among the Saints: we should be too unthankful to God, and enemies of our own comfort, if we should make courtesy or refuse to understand that, which it pleaseth him to reveal unto us by his word. Now, in it this felicity is oftentimes signified by the promise of life everlasting, and not without reason. For in our felicity, two points may and ought specially to be considered: first, the greatness and excellency of the good thing: secondly, the long continuance and sureness of it.
Table of Contents
TO THE RIGHT HONORABLE AND VIRTUOUS LADY, THE COUNTESS OF WARWICK.
TO THE FAITHFUL OF THE LOW COUNTRY
CHAPTER 1. Of the great and incomprehensible happiness of the life everlasting promised to the children of God.
CHAPTER 2. - How we shall know that we are the children of God.
CHAPTER 3. How every member of the Church ought to apply unto himself the tokens of it, to assure himself of his adoption and salvation.
CHAPTER 4. - How although the marks of our adoption be in us but small and feeble, yet we ought, and may assure ourselves that we are the children of God.
CHAPTER 5. - That the Apostasy and revolt of some having made profession of the true religion, ought not to make us call in doubt neither our religion nor our adoption.
CHAPTER 6. - That afflictions ought not to make us to doubt of our adoption, but rather confirm us.
CHAPTER 7. - That the afflictions that happen unto us, have been foretold, and therefore they ought to confirm us in the assurance of our adoption.
CHAPTER 8. - That the Children of God have always been afflicted, and yet still beloved of God.
CHAPTER 9. - That the faithful have the common afflictions of the children of Adam, because of the excellent fruits of them, testimonies of their adoption, and of the love of God toward them.
CHAPTER 10. - Of the afflictions for the name of Christ. and of their fruits.
CHAPTER 11. - Other fruits of the afflictions for the name of Jesus Christ.
CHAPTER 12. - An exhortation to persevere constantly in the truth of the Gospel in the time of persecution, not to fear death, to keep us from apostasy and dissimulation, to use the holy Ministry, to walk in the fear of God, and to pray to him.
CHAPTER 13. Holy meditations and prayers.
THE NECESSITY AND BENEFIT OF AFFLICTION.