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der several Soyeraigns, as the Weft is at this day, if had been as it were impossible, but that divers of them, if not the most part, would have denied entrance to the Apostles, who were the new Preachers. Little Lords, who have not much to do, concern themselves more particularly about every part of their Territories, than great Emperors, who having the Government of the whole world to mind, are forc't to remit the care of lessimportanţ matters, to their Deputies and Lieutenants. 3. The dispersion of the fews by their frequent Captivities, was also a means which God made use ofto prepare the way forțhe Conversion of the Gentiles: they gave them the knowledge of the true God. 4. Another thing which contributed very much to this design of God, was the Translation of the Bible into the Greek Tongue; whereby the sacred Oracles became common among the Heathens. And about the time of our Saviour's appearance in the World, there were multitudes of those Profeo lites, which are called Proselites of the Gate. Such as were not really lewys, but they ceas't to be par gans. They renounc't their Idolatry, they were present every Sabbatb day at the reading of Moses and the Prophets; they had a distinct place in the Synagogues. 'Tis of them we so often read in the Book of the As, under the name of devout, and such as feared God among the Gentiles: Cornelius was of that number. It could not be difficult for them to abandon Paganism, for they had álready left it, and they could not be hindred from becoming Christians by Judaism, for they had neyer imbrac't it; So that they became Christians without change or violence; The greatest part of the converted Gentiles were such as these. 5. And by the same good Providence of God, Phi
lofophy began to flourish among the Pagans, a little before the coming of Christ, which was of grent use to refine the minds of men, and render them capable of receiving celestial and sublime Truths. 6. Lastly, God poiselt the Heathen with a contempt of Idolatry aud Idols : They were disgusted and fick of their Gods: The fälle Oracles of Des mons ceas't, their Priests lost their reputation, and åll the World breåth'd after a change, without knowing'why. · I find something like this at present. 1. Since the last Age God hath revived the Light and knowledge of the Sciences, which was almost ftifled and extinguishe under the barbarism of Scholastick. Learning. In the last Century, God caused the knowledge of the Greek and Hebrew
Tongues to revive, which was offuch use for the understanding of the Holy Scripture, and the confutation of Heresy and Idólatry, that the Papifts do not scruple to say, that'tis that which hath undone them. In this Century the Providence of God hath carried the acuteness and delicacy of mens minds to that degree, that it may truly be said, that the most inlightned and refined Ages past, were barbarous in comparison with this. The speculative Sciences and true Philosophy are brought to that Perfection, that all that we had before may be reckoned fimplicity and ignorance. This new Phim Lofophy doth open and inlaigethe mind, and the light we receive from mödern Philosophers doth help very much to scatter that thick darknefs, which the Phi. tosophy of the Schools had cast upon the Doctrines of Religion. We shall shortly know of what use the new Philofophy may be to destroy those Monstersof Transfubftantiation and the Real Presence.
2. I look upon the long Voyages of our Europamin
the discoveries made of new Countries in the Eif and West, and the improvement of the Art of Navigation, to be a means which God prepares for the fullfilling that great Promise that concerns the full Conversion of ihe Gentiles. Why did God reserve the Invention of the Sea Compass to these last times? why was it not known three or four hundred years ago, what it was to sail upon the Ocean far from the thore? was there less curiosity, covetousness , or industry among men formerly thani now ? for what reason would God that one half of the World should live in ignorance of the otherfor so long a time? Why hath God in these latter days more visibly favour'd the designs which men have always had , to inrich themielves by Commerce and Trade, going in pursuit of riches to the end of the World? for my own part, I cannot but look upon this as a work of a molt wise Providence , discovering to us unknown People, whose Conversion he intends to bring about within a short Time.
3. Iconsider the great number of half Christians which the Popish Missions make in the Indies, to be just as those Profelytes of the Gate, which the lews made; they were properly neither lewsnor Chripians, but were the feed of Christianity.' These Easlern Converis , which are made by Papists, are neither Heathens , nor Christians: but they will be the first part of the Harvest, which God intends to have among those People; and after they are fully converted, they will be very ferviceable for the Conversion of those who as yet are altogether Pagans.
4. I admire the depth of Divine Providence, that by insensible steps and degrees, disposeth the Ma. humetan Nations for Conversion. For this we need but consult the second Book of the Present State of
Lib. z. the Ottoman Empire, by Mr. Ricant. In that Hi-
Haičtites; who believe that the Melfiah took a trus natural Body, and that being Eternal, he became in. carnate, as the Christians believe : W'herefore they · have inserted this Arlicle into their confeffion of Faith,
that Christ shall come to judge the World at the last day. For the proof whereof theỳ cite a Text out of the Alckoran in these words, O Mahomet! thou i Ihalt see thy Lord, who shall come again in the Clouds. For though they dare not positively :
interpret this of J. Christ, yet they boldly affirm, " that this is fore-told of the Mesiáb; and in their “ordinary discourse, they confess, that this Meffiah
can be no other than lésiis, who is to return into
“the World with the same fleshi which he aflum'd. Chap 1
i The same Author tells us, “That there is an opi“nion generally received amongthe Turks within a “ few years, which is entertained by the best people
ofthe Seraglio, & common enough at Conftantinople. They who profess to believe it are called Chup “Messahitesi. 8. the good Partisans or followers of
the Messiah. They hold that Christ is God, and 6that he is the Redeemer ofthe World. The young “Scholars in the Court ofthe grand Seigniör are ge66nerally of this opinion : perticularly the most po
lite and civilized, and wellbred among them. InCsomuch that 'tis a form of speech very much in ule
among them, when they would praise any one, to & fay to him, Chup Mellabifen, you are very civiland u obliging, as he should be who makes profession of
the service of the Messiah. There are a multitude 6 of these People Constantinople, and there have “.been some who have maintained this Doctrine, (with somuch courage that rather than quit it,they have chosen to suffer martyrdom:
Admirers of they find agrees wie abolisht. Bea
...There is another Sect,called Eschrakites.« They 2.407.
the Trinity also, as a number proceeding from
piece of cloth when it is unfolded. These areno
the Schecs , and the most able Preachers of the
Royal Mosques, are of this Sect. They are very & diligent in their devotions, and sober in their dyer , &c. They have also a great deal of Charity
for their Neighbours saying, they are the Crea"tures of God,&c. They instruct their Scholars to
be moderate, wise and grave; in a word toabstain 6 from all evil Actions, and to practise all Vertues. One step farther, and these People will be much better Christians than the Greeks, who have the name and Profession of Christians. 5. The sensible Fall and declension of the Papacy, A. general
difpofitioa is a fifth sign of that great work which God is ma- in the • king way for. It seems to be furious, to reign, and world.com
despise and get ground; nevertheless, in truth it is falling; for forlake Poas God discredited the Religion of the Pagan Idols, pery, a little before the coming of our Lord Iesus Christ; fo he makes this renewed Paganism of Popery, to be in lefs credit and efteem than formerly, Men begin