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without having any of those Comforts which such Persons enjoy in those Moments, that are co.ro scious to themselves of having done well!
Again, let him remove the Scene from the Hofpicals to our Goals, and take a View of those Wretches whom their Debauchery has broughe thither, and when he sees them periling with Hunger and Cold, eaten up with Fith and Vermin, and unpitied and unlamented by all, eveo of their Fellow Prisoners, ler him lay his Hand upon his Breat, and speak impartially, whether any transi, tory Pleasures, that can be reaped from any unlawful Commerce, are not much too dearly boughs by such cruel Sufferings. We have aow consi. dered the Cate, exclufive of the Tersors of another World, or the untimely and violent Death, we may. ycaforably expe&t in this ; and if it is so shocking cven in this Light, what muft ir be when both the other almoft unavoidable Judgments are likewise put into the Account? May we not chen rruly say, that the Devil is a bard Master, and that he gives his moji faithful Drudges very fad Wages ?
- la effect, we might reasonably think what has been here premised, would be of itself sufficient to prevent any one's engaging in such Service, and presuming to contravene the Laws of his great Creator, especially with respect to this Commandmene : However, a, we are but too sensible these Truths cannot be enforced too much, inculcated coo often, or impressed too deeply on the Hearts of Men, we will now proceed to give some melancholly and fhocking Instances, what Ravages, De. valtarions, and Desolation this Gogle Vice, as harm. less as it is generally reckoned by the Gay and Poo Jire, has caused in the World, almoft from the ve: ry Beginning thereof.
Whar birer Fruir, for Example, did she tran..
of the SivenTH COMMANDMENT. 257 fient Pleasure enjoyed by Shechem the Son of Hamar, when he ravished Dinah, Jacob's fair Daughter, produce ? Did it not cause the utter Defolation of his Country? Did so much as one Male in the City escape the general Maffacre ? And were not all their Wives and Little Ones led into a miferable Caprivity, after being plundered of their whole Substance ? Was nor himself and his Father involved in this universal Ruin? And was not this after his having voluntarily offered all the Compensation in his Power ; nay, even after he, and all his City had not only agreed to be circumcised, but had actually undergone that' painful Ope. ration, and consented to become one People with the House of Yacob? What worfe Ruin, what more consummate Misery, could Fire, War, Plague, Peftilence, and Famine, have occasioned ? Such were the terrible Effects of unlawful Luft! i s
But this Instance, melancholly and Mocking as it is, is neither the only one, nor che worst that Sacred History a fords us, of the dreadful Conse.... quences of this Sin ; for what were the hopeful Fruits of the abominable Abuse of the Levites Con. cubine by the Men of Gibeah? Did not this single A& cause the Slaughter of above forty Thousand of the Children of Ifrael, besides the almoft Extira pation of the Tribe of Benjamin, and the cotal DeItruction of those vile Wrerches who occasioned this dreadful Calamity, the Men of Gibeab in particular, with their wholc City, and all that were cherein Who chat reads this Account will ever be perswa. ded to think lightly of a Sin that is atrended with such dismal Consequences ! But before we leave this Story it will be proper to observe thereon, that the Woman thus abused, was not only Concus bine to the Levite, and not his Wife, but also a Concubine, of whom we are exprefly told, cbar The had played the Whore, and consequently was false to him.' One would have been apt, thecefore, to :
think, that if the abusing any one were pardonable, is would have been such a one, and at least, that it would have been some Alleviacion of the Crime, that he was a loose Woman, but we do not find they escaped the better for that, the Excess of the Abuse cried out for Vengeance, the Șin was the same in che Eye of Heaven, and was punished accordingly in the terrible Manner before related.
Should we now make a Tranficion from facred to prophanc History, we fhall there find this OF fonce to have been attended with the same woful Consequences; and that amongst a People absolutely ignorant of the true God, and intire Stratgers, to this Divine Law. The famous Ten Years Siegs of Troy, so, celebrated in Scory, which furnished Homer with a subject for the finest Poem that was ever penned, and which ended with the urter Des ftruction of that o ce lofry City, and the coral Extermination of the Frojan People, was solely owing to this ruinous Vice. The Rape of the beaureous Helen by Paris, and the Protection given by his Faer, che too indulgent Priam,, ro the infamous Adulterer and Adubereks, involved the whole Nae zion n as cousummare Mifery and Desolation, as If a defroying Angel had been sent amongst them 0 fetter accumulaced Plagues ! i i s ,
To coine down to later Times, and even to our own County, we hall there find the same hopeful Fruit to have been produced from this forbidden Tree, thot gh it was not attended with such" utter Ruio:i. And this was in the Reign of Henig II. one of she most powerful Monarchs that ever faz upon the English Throne. This great Prince, hapa, peoning Wis fortunately to fall in Love with the beauteous Rofamond, Daughter to the Lord Clifford, and having found the Means to win her to his Embraces, his Royal Conlon the haughiy Eleanor, who could ill bear a Partner in her Bed, getciog Notice
thereof, it not only proved a continual Source of Discord between them, but was the Occafron of the Loss of many Thousands of Lives. For that high-spirited, Princess never ceased to ftir up her Sons' to revenge her Quarrel, by dechroning their Father; which their own Ambition making chem ready enough to do; they were constantly re. boiling against him, and being supported by France, sometimes brought his Crown into imminent Dan. ger : And though by reason of his great Abilities, he constantly got the better of his Enemies, yec was is not without many bloody Baciles toughe, abroad, and many Insurrections with Difficulrg. suppressed at home, that he preserved himself upon the Throne.
Such were the destructive Consequences of even, a Monarch's giving Way to impure Embraces in this Nation ; and much more ruinous did the same prove in the Kingdom o! Spain, where it was the immediate Occasion of the Subversion of the Gothic, Line, to the Loss of many hundred thousands of Lives; and the remote Cause of the Eilablishment, of the dreadful Court of I quifirion, to the daily Burchery or many fundreds more, and the pera, petual 'error of ail good. Chriftians. In effect, this remarkable Event, which coit the lives of, some Milions, and in all Probability will daily oca casion the Slaughter of many more, was the blefa sed Fruits of the ravishing Count Julian's Daughter, by Roderick che ļaft King of the Gotbs. So true is that Saying of Ovid, Dilirant Reges, ple&untur. Achivi.
After such terrible Examples of the severe Par nishments inflicted by Heaven for the Breach of the Seventh Commandment, it may seem in a Manner fuperHuous to cite orchers ; nevertheless as we are most ape to be affected with such Things as have happened in our own Times, and perhaps within
our Own Knowledge, we will add some few, which not only have come to pass within the Memory of moft Men now living, but which, as all the Parties concerned were Persons of Fashion and Distinction, and some of them of the first Rank, made no lir. ile Noise in the World, and were for some Time the common Topics of Conversation.
The first we Mall mention of chere was a beau. tiful young Lady in her full Bloom, advantageously married, had the knowo when she was so, to a worthy Nobleman, of suitable Years, and a large Estate, who was infinitely indulgent of her, and placed his “chiet Happiness in the Enjoyment of Yo lovely a Spouse. Thus beloved by her Husband, and in full Pofesion of all enar an honeft Mind could defire, or this rublunary World afford to compleat her Felicity, one would have thought The had the' faireft Protpeet of paling her Days in Sweet Tranquility, and ending her morial Course with Honour ; and indeed such might have been her happy Lot, had her Virtue and Discretion been cqual to her Charms. As they were not, however, as she unfortunately suffered herself to be drawn away, either by giving Way to the insidious Ad. dresses of an unworthy Seducer, or by fercing loose the Rein to a vicious Inclination, the law this bliss. ful Scene changed in a Moment i feil from the Height of Honour and' [Ippiness, to the Depth of Milery and Disgrace; and shorely after d ed of a broken Heart, in the umoft Obscurity, without the Comfort of a single Friend to close her Eyes. So close did the Punishment follow upon the Heels of the Offence! And so feverely did Providence vi. Gr this Breach of the Seventh Commandment upon this beauteous Frail One ! . .
• In effect, we think is evident, that the Hand of Heaven was concerned in this Affair, hy quire infaa fuating the guilty Couple, fince, had either the