THE TRUE ACCOUNT OF THE BEHAVIOUR AND CONFESSION, Of the Condemned Criminals, at Justice-Hall in the Old-Baily; on the 8th. Day of April 1687.
Then and there were Eleven Persons Condemned to Dye, viz. Robert Brewer, John Sawyer, Robert Parret, Thomas Arnold, John Sharland, William Grant, Richard Cane, Elizabeth Clark, Catharine Jones, Elizabeth Creed, and Ann Trahern, Of which Robert Brewer, Robert Parret, Thomas Arnold, Ann Traherne, were Executed at TYBURN. On Wednesday, the 13th. of this Instant April.
THE Ordinary visited these Condemned Malesfactors on Saturday. After he had Payed for them, he endeavoured to convince them, how they ought to reflect on their former flagitious Courses, which had provok’d the Lord to leave them most justly in the committing such Crimes, which had drawn upon them the Snares of Death. After he had used Arguments to Excite them to Repentance, he put them in mind how they might prepare themselves for the approaching Sabbath, and so with Prayer dismist them.
On the Lords Day in the Forenoon, the, Ordinary read Prayers, and Preached on that Sacred Scripture in the 2d. Epistle of St. Paul to Timothy, the 2d. Chapter, and the 22d. verse viz. Fly youthful Lusts. from whence he declared, that Sin is a spreading Infection which Traints the purest Blood of Infants, and the briskest Spirits or young Men. Hence it is that this rank among mankind is especially warn'd to fly youthful Lusts; these easily and sensibly, insinuate their pestilential malignity into young Ones Hearts, there they lye strongly Fermenting, till by in consideration and an headstrong Presumption they ent themselves Reason is, because Youth is the unthinking time of Life; what may be the shameful and destructive Issue of them. Youth hath strong and fond aflections to sin, on every weak and foolish missapprehensions of the Sordid Profit, and sensual Pleasure of it. They consider not that the natural Genuine Fruit, aid Recompence of Sin is Death, yet they Confidently pour out the strength of their Affections, in a wicked course, tho' this betray them to Gods Wrath and their own Ruin.
Young Persons Judge not aright of the Painted Insnaring Complexion of Sin; Therefore fly Youthful Lusts betimes, crush them in the Shell before they be Fledg'd, with the inticing advantage of false artificial Imbellishments, otherwise they will prove too strong to be resisted and overcome.
Young men commonly rejoyce in the Daies of their Vanity, to fulfil the desires of their own Hearts. They Indulge an Activity in Sining, they ought rather to look on Sin, in its Nightdress when it is stript of its false Attire, when the Scean of its Finery and vulgar Applause is changed, as ready to shuffle the sinner into a Goal or Grave.
wounded Conscience shall seize on the self-deluding Sinner.
Here the Ordinary gave many Arguments, to fly from Youthful Lusts, because these stain as a dark Cloud the fair Morning of our tender Budding Age, and prove the reproach of Old Age.
Therefore repent of Youth sins, in Youth before these be confirmed by Custom, which is a second Nature; the account of Youth sins, when posted over to a Death Bed Repentance, are multiplied and aggravated, as a Debt standing long undischarged, increases by Interest upon Interest.
2d. Argument Youth sins are most dangerous, because committed out of Presumption, with an high Hand, a stif Neck, a proud Heart, and a Rebellious Mind; young Persons think that they have time enough before them to repent, they think; that youthful sins will dye of themselves, but they are confirmed by Custom, 22d. Jeremiah, 21St. verse. I spake unto thee in thy prosperity, but thou sdst, I will not bear: this hath been thy mannar from thy youth, that thou obeydst not my voice
Shall young Persons set their strength to Rebel against the Lord, who is Tender over them, And abounds in kindness to them.
Here were laid down some directions to Motisie youth-sins.
Directions to expedite and facilitate Repentance for youth-sins.
Ist. Trace them by Afflictions: Misery reads a true Anatomy-Lecture on the whole Body of our corrupt Nature, it brings to our rememberance, out Ancient and forgotten Impieties. 24th. Gen. 21st. The 1st. of the Kings, chap. 17. vers. 18. 33. Job 16. By distress the Lord Opens the Ears of sinners to Instructions, against which, they were stopt before. 119. Psalm 67. when thou art bound in affliction, observe what sins come first to thy Memory, or flies in thy Face; that usually is the sin which God points at, and Would have thee to cast it away.
2ly. Keep as punctual a diary of your provocations against the Lord, as you can; when you cannot sleep, Commune with your Hearts on your; Beds and be still or silent. 4. Psal.4. vers. hear out, what Conscience hath in charge to Accuse you of: yet sinners are so far from exercising the Reflective Power of Reason, that they quite Extinguish it, by frequent Transgressing, they so hlot out the Characters, or Sentiments of good or evil, that at last, as a Table-book which is often Spu ged upon, Conscience will not take any Impression of good at all.
3ly. Direction upon the first Conviction of Conscience by the word of the Lord, Smite your Lusts, and fall immediate upon the work of Mortification, do not Repreive your Lusts, but hasten their Execution, otherwise you will be Indulgent to them, after the heat of an Angry Dispensation from God is spent: those Lusts which are spared, as if they could do no are not kill’d outright, and will give thee a fresh onset to thy Ruin.
Plead not in defence of youthful-sins: you can never Repent of them, if you count them not a reproach; frivolous excuses cause you to go a stray still, and persist in the greatness of your Folly.
Would you repent in good Earnest, never dream that every passionate pang in Conscience, is the real Birth of the New Creature.
4thly. Direction, Take heed of reviving and strengthning youthful lusts, by a delightful bewitching, besotting Speculation 23d. Ezek 19. Yet she Multiplyed her Whordoms in calling to remembrance the days of her youth wherein, she play’d the Harlot in the Land of Egypt. If thou wouldst not by a kind of incest, lngraft a new Sin on the stock of an Inveterate one, roul not lust in thy Fancy with delight: raze out those pleasing Ideas and besotting representations of thy youthful Dalliance.
5thly. Direction, to fly youthful sins, viz. Prevent the occasion, remove those Objects which may again Insnae thy Heart 101. Psal. 3. and 119. Psal. 32. Turn away mine Eyes form gazing upon Vanity, least I be defiled therewith make a covenant with thy senses, and bind thy heart strictly to keep it, 15. Prov. 2. The way of the Wisf is above, to decline the Snares of Death; you cannot carry Fire in your Bosom and not be Burnt. There is a Fly called who delights so long to play about the Candle, till ‘its Wings be inged, and it self Consumed in the flame. He cannot repent sincerely of sin past, who is not watchful against Temptations for the future. Be very temperate in the use of your lawful Comforts, even Timothy himself, who darnk water to the weakning of his Stomack, and even macerated his Body by much Studying, and so was least lyable to be Unchast yet is commanded to fly from youthful Lusts; Mortisy therefore the hidden principles of sin in your Hearts, the greatest Retirdness from sinful Company, cannot without great, Watchfulness and Prayer, fortify the corrupt heart against the pestilential Seeds of its own Natural Lusting.
He who is only Civilized with Moral Charmes, and hath not any real Grace to mortify inward Lusting, this may squatt in as the Small pox often doe, yet it will strike a more deadly Infection to the Heart, thorow security in a Paliated cure.
Restraint only from slavish fear of Hell, or the Worlds shame, when taken off, the violence of a Temptation, will so possess the sinner, that after the Lucide intervals of Sobriety, and seeming Sanctity, his Phrenfy will return with a sharper onset.
6th. Direction, to Cure the lusts of youth is this, do not post over Repentance for the Vigorous sins of thy Budding Age, to thy old decrepid State, presume not on long Life, as if Repentance, and the season of it were in your own Power: Both are the Sole and free Gift of God, it is Just that they, who put off the serious Remembrance of the Lord, as the Guide