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as the other. Just as it is in nature and accident. To eat
poison and filthiness is against every man's health and
stomach; but if by an /'<5/o<, 'a propriety of temper,' or
an evil habit, or accidental inordination, wine or fish makes
a man sick, then these are against his nature too, but not so
as poison is, or stones. Whatever comes in the conscience
primarily, or consequently., right or wrong, is brought forth
upon occasion of action, and is part of her dictate : but as a
man speaks some things of his own knowledge, some things
by hearsay ; so does conscience ; some things she tells from
God and herself, some things from reason and herself, or
other accidental notices : those and these do integrate and


complete her sermons, but they have several influence and
obligation according to their proper efficiency. But of this I
shall give full_accounts in the second book.


To testify.

3. Conscience bears witness of our actions; so St. Paul/
"their conscience bearing witness: " and in this sense, con-
science is a practical memory. For as the practical know-
ledge, or notices subjected in the understanding, makes the
understanding to be conscience ; so the actions of our life,
recorded in the memory and brought forth to practical judg-
ments, change the memory also into conscience. Tot JO.P
yswu; ru'j c*.vds'jj - uv TCL'J-JI otap'ieovros ruv aXXwv wy, jj
ccvro/5 fAz-sari \/o-j xai Xoyia/MV' pavsebv, wj o-lx eixk; xusa
a\j-oi/: rr,v VjfMkgtyMVifV diatpoeav, xat.6d.tfse l-~i run

" Man differing from brute beasts by the use of reason, it is
not likely he should be a stranger to his own actions as the
beasts are : but that the evil which is done, should be
recalled to their mind with the signification of some dis-
pleasure." So Polybius 5 discourses of the reason and the
manner of conscience.

4. Every knowing faculty is the seat of conscience ; and
the same faculty, when it is furnished with speculative notions,
retains its natural and proper name of understanding, or
memory ; but as the same is instructed with notices in order
to judgments practical, so it takes the Christian name of con-
science. The volitive or choosing faculty cannot, but the
intellectual may. And this is that book, which at doomsday
shall be brought forth and laid open to all the world. The
memory, changed into conscience, preserves the notices of
some things, and shall be reminded of others, and shall do
that work entirely and perfectly, which now it does imper-
fectly and by parts, according to the words of St. Paul ; ' "then
shall we know as we are known," that is, as God knows us
now, so then shall we see and know ourselves. " Nullum
theatrmn virtuti conscientia majus," u shall then be highly
verified. Our conscience will be the great scene or theatre,
upon which shall be represented all our actions good and bad.
It is God's book, the book of life or death. According to the
words of St. Bernard ; x "Ex his, quae scripta erunt in libris
nostris, judicabimur ; et ideo scribi debent secundum exem-
plar libri vitee, et si sic scripti non sunt, saltern corrigendi

r Rom. ii. 1.5. Lib. vi. Scfiweig. ii. 465. e 1 Cor. xiii. 12.

" Cicero, ii. c. 25. Tuscul. Rath. p. 20iJ. * De Inter. Doift. lib. ii. c. ult.


sunt : We shall be judged by that which is written in our
own books (the books of conscience) ; and therefore they ought
to be written according to the copy of the book of life ; and if
they be not so written, yet they ought to be so corrected."

5. Consequently to these the conscience does
Accuse or Excuse.

So St. Paul y joins them as consequent to the former ;
" their conscience bearing witness, and their thoughts in the
meantime accusing or excusing one another." " Si opti-
morum consiliorum atque factorum testis in onini vita nobis
conscientia fuerit, sine ullo metu summa cum honestate vive-
mus ; z If our conscience be the witness that in our life
we do good deeds, and follow sober counsels, we shall live
in great honesty and without fear." Atxaerr,v sog Ts<mj<rg
rbv dixaiorarov apa xai oixeioTarov, TO <Svvsidb<; avrb, xai rbv ogdbv
Xoyoi/, said Hierocles; 3 "God hath constituted a most
righteous and domestic judge, the conscience and right
reason :" Ka/ avrbv gaurw, ov fdvrcuv ftdXiGra aibiTd^a,! Kgoz-Traidsv-
6ri[Lev, "Every man ought most of all to fear himself, because
it is impossible but we should know what we have done
amiss ; and it concerns us also to make righteous judgment,
for we cannot escape ourselves." MjjdsVors pri&iv aig^oov
eXcr/g X^ffs/v" xcti yag av TOV$ aXXoug Xa^^f, ffaurw yz
said Isocrates : b " Etsi a caeteris silentium est,
tamen ipse sibimet conscius est posse se merito increpari,"
so Apuleius renders it. " Though others hold their peace,
yet there is one within that will not."

Nee facile est placidam ac pac.atam degere vitam,
Qui violat facteis communia fcedera pacis.
Etsi fullit euim Divom genus humanumque,
Perpetuo tamen id fore clam diffidere debet. c

It is hard to be concealed from God and man too, and although

' O

we think ourselves safe for awhile, yet we have something
within that tells us, obz 'ian Xa^a n voiovvra, he that does
any thing is espied, and cannot do it privately. ' Quicum in
tenebris?' was the old proverb ; 'Who was with you in the
dark?' And therefore it was that Epicurus affirmed it to be
impossible for a man to be concealed always. Upon the
mistake of which he was accused by Plutarch and others, to

1 Rom. ii. 15. z Cicero pro Cluentio. Needham, p. 158.

b Lange, p. 5. Lucretius, v. 1155. Eichstadt, p. 242.


have supposed it lawful to do any injustice secretly ; whereas
his design was to obstruct that gate of iniquity, and to make
men believe that even that sin which was committed most
secretly, would some time or other be discovered and brought
to punishment ; all which is to be done by the extraregular
events of providence, and the certain accusations and dis-
coveries of conscience.

6. For conscience is the looking-glass of the soul, so it
was called by Periphanes in Plautus ; d

NOD oris causa modo homines sequum fuit
Sibihabere speculum, ubios contemplarent suum ;
Sed qui perspicere possent cor sapientiae,
Jgitur perspicere ut possint cordis copiam.
Ubi id inspexissent, cogitarent postea,
Vitam ut vixissent olim in adolescentia.

And a man looking into his conscience, instructed with the
word of God, its proper rule, is by St. James 8 compared to
" a man beholding his natural face in a glass ;" and that the
apostle describes conscience in that similitude, is to be
gathered from the word tp?urov \6yov, ' verbum insitum, the
ingrafted word,' the word of God written in our hearts,
which whoso looks on, and compares his actions with his
rule, may see what he is : but he that neglects this word and
follows not this rule, did indeed see his face, but hath for-
gotten what manner of man he was, that is, what he was
framed in the works of the new creation, when he was newly
formed and "created unto righteousness and true holiness."

7. This accusation and watchfulness, and vocal, clamor-
ous guards of conscience, are in perpetual attendance, and
though they may sleep, yet they are quickly awakened, and
make the evil man restless. Tovg adixovvras xal x

70,5 adXiug xai tftgitpoZui; ^yv rbv vcivTa %fovoi', on xqiv
dvvavrui, viffnv isz^l rot \adifv XuZttv advvarov sffri' o&ev 6 rou
asi <p6Zo; Byxt/psvog ovx IS. %aiPtiv, oD ^app^Tv SKI ro7s
oZffi, said Epicurus : f which is very well 8 rendered by

* In Epidico, act. iii. sc. 3. 1. Schmieder, p. 294. James, i. 21-24.

f Diog. Laert.

e In the passage, which is quoted by Bishop Taylor, Seneca does not so much
render as comment upon Epicurus : the words of Seneca are, " Eleganter itaque ab
Epicure dictum puto, ' Potest nocenti contingere ut lateat, latendi fides non
potest.' Aut si hoc modo melius hunc explicari posse judicas sensum ; Idea non
prodest latere peccantilnts, quid latendi etiam si felicitatem habent, Jiduciam non
habent." Seneca, ep. 97. Ruhkopf, yol. iii. p. 246 (J. R. P.)


Seneca, " Ideo non prodest latere latentibus, quia latendi
etiam si felicitatem habent, fiduciam non habent ; They that
live unjustly, always live miserably and fearfully ; because
although their crime be secret, yet they cannot be confident
that it shall be so :" meaning, that because their conscience
does accuse them, they perceive they are discovered, and
pervious to an eye, which what effect it will have in the pub-
lication of the crime here and hereafter, is not matter of
knowledge, but cannot choose but be matter of fear for ever.

Fiet adulter

Publicus, et poenas metuet, quascunque mariti
Exigere irati ; nee erit felicior astro
Martis, ut in laqueos nunquam incidat. b

If any chance makes the fact private, yet no providence or
watchfulness can give security, because within there dwells
a principle of fear that can never die, till repentance kills it.
And therefore, Chilo in Laertius said upon this account, that
* loss is rather to be chosen than filthy gain ; because that
loss brings sorrow but once, but injustice brings a perpetual
fear and pain.'

Anne magis Siculi gemuerunt sera juvenci,
Aut magis auratis pendens laqueavibus ensis
Purpureas subter cervices terruit, Imus,
Imus pr<Ecipites, quam si sibi dicat, et intus
Palleat infelix, quod proxima nesciat uxor 1 '

The wife that lies by his side, knows not at what the guilty
man looks pale, but something that is within the bosom
knows ; and no pompousness of condition can secure the
man, and no witty cruelty can equal the torment. For that
also, although it be not directly the office of conscience, yet
it is the act and effect of conscience ; when itself is injured,
it will never let any thing else be quiet.

To loose or bind,

8. Is the reflex act of conscience. Upon viewing the
records, or the cwrqgiiaig, the legislative part of conscience, it
binds to duty ; upon viewing the act, it binds to punishment,
or consigns to comfort ; and in both regards it is called by
Origen, "Affectuum corrector, atque animae psedagogus,
The corrector of the affections, and the teacher of the soul."
Which kind of similitude Epictetus, in Stobaeus, followed

h Juven. Sat. x. 311. Ruperti, p. 176. * Perf. Sat. iii. 39. Koenig.p.41.


also ; tf Parentes pueros nos paedagogo tradiderunt, qui ubi-
que observaret ne laederemur; Deus autem clam viros insitae
conscientiae custodiendos tradidit.; quse quidein custodia
nequaquam contemnenda est ; As our parents have deli-
vered us to a guardian, who did watch lest we did or suffered
mischief; so hath God committed us to the custody of our
conscience that is planted within us : and this custody is at
no hand to be neglected."


9. The binding to duty is so an effect of conscience, that
it cannot be separated from it ; but the binding to punish-
ment is an act of conscience also as it is a judge, and is
intended to affright a sinner, and to punish him : but it is such
a punishment as is the beginning of hell-torments, and unless
the wound be cured, will never end till eternity itself shall go
into a grave.

Illo nocens se damnat quo peccat die ;J

" The same day that a man sins, on the same day he is con-
demned ;" and when Menelaus, in the tragedy, did ask,

Ti %(fif*,a, <ra<r^ns ; r'ts tr aTXXy<r/ v'lins ',

What disease killed poor Orestes? he was answered,

'H %vtffis, ori ffvvei^a Se/v' iig'ytz<r[&ir/>s t k

His disease was nothing but an evil conscience ; he had done
vile things, and had an amazed spirit that distracted him, and
so he died. ' Curas ultrices' Virgil 1 calls the wounds of an
evil conscience, 'revenging cares.' " Nihil est miserius
quam animus hominis conscius," said he in the comedy;" 1
" Nothing is more miserable than an evil conscience ;" and
the being pained with it is called rw ffvvsidon act-ay^aSa/,
'to be choked or strangled' with an evil conscience, by
St. Chrysostom, who, in his twenty-second homily upon the
first Epistle to the Corinthians, speaks much and excellently
to the same purpose : and there are some that fancy this was
the cause of Judas's death ; the horrors of his conscience
were such, that his spirits were confounded, and restless, and
uneasy ; and striving to go from their prison, stopped at the
gates of emanation, and stifled him. It did that, or as bad ;
it either choked him, or brought him to a halter, as it hath

J Apud Publium. k Euripid. Orest. 389 Priestley's edition, vol. i. p. 265.
'Jin. vi. 224. m Plautus.


done many besides him. And although I may truly say, as
he did,

Non mihi si linguae centum

Omnia poenarum percurrere nomina possem,"

No tongue is able to express the evils which are felt by a
troubled conscience, or a wounded spirit ; yet the heads of
them are visible and notorious to all men.

10. (1). The first is that which Nazianzen calls rag ev alroig
r&% feTvoig t^ayogivsiig, ' accusations and vexings of a man
when he is in misery;' then when he needs most comfort, he
shall by his evil conscience be most disquieted. A sickness
awakes a dull sleeping conscience, and when it is awakened
it will make that the man shall not sleep. So Antiochus
when his lieutenant Lysias was beaten by the Jews, he fell
sick with grief, and then his conscience upbraided him ; "but
now (said he) I remember the evils that I did at Jerusa-
lem ; ' quia invenerunt me mala ista' (so the Latin Bible
reads it); ' because those evils now have found me out.'"
For when a man is prosperous, it is easy for him to stop the
mouth of conscience, to bribe it or abuse it, to fill it with
noise, and to divert it with business, to outvie it with tempo-
ral gaieties, or to be flattered into weak opinions and sen-
tences : but when a man is smitten of God, and divested of
all the outsides and hypocrisies of sin, and that conscience is
disentangled from its fetters and foolish pretensions, then it
speaks its own sense, it ever speaks loudest when the man is
poor, or sick, or miserable. This was well explicated by St.
Ambrose ; " Dum sumus in quadam delinquendi libidine, ne-
bulis quibusdam conscientise rnens obducitur, ne videat eorum,
quae concupiscit, deformitatem : sed cum omnis nebula trans-
ient, gravia tormenta exercentur in quodam male conscii
secretario ; A man is sometimes so surprised with the false
fires and glarings of temptation, that he cannot see the
secret turpitude and deformity. But when the cloud and vail
are off, then comes the tormentor from within :"

Acuuntque metum mortalibus asgris,

Si quando letum horrific urn, morbosque, deum rex
Molitur, meritas aut bello territat urbes.P

Then the calamity swells, and conscience increases the trou-
ble, when God sends war, or sickness, or death. It was

" &a. vi. Mace. vi. 12. P ^En. xii. 852.


Saul's case : when he lost that fatal battle in which the ark
was taken, he called to the Amalekite, " Sta super me et
interfice me, Fall upon me and slay me ; " " Quoniam tenent
me angustiae, I am in a great strait." He was indeed ;
for his son was slain, and his army routed, and his enemies
were round about : but then conscience stepped in and told
him of the evil that he had done in causing fourscore of the
Lord's priests to be slain ; and therefore Abulensis reads the
words thus ; " Fall upon me and slay me," " Quoniam tenent
me orse vestimenti sacerdotalis ; I am entangled in the
fringes of the priests' garments." " Videbatur sibi Saul, quod
propinquus morti videret sacerdotes Dei accusantes eum in
judicio coram Deo; He thought he saw the priests of the
Lord accusing him before God." And this hath been an old
opinion of the world, that, in the days of their calamity,
wicked persons are accused by those whom they have in-
jured. Not much unlike to which is that of Plato describing
the torments of wicked souls : I3ow<r/ re xai xaAouovK, 01 piv
ovg UKiXTtivav, oi ds oug vGflCOUf xaX'seavrsg 8' '/xzrsvo'jffi rouj
f,8ixqfji,evovs dovvai fffitii ffvyyvupriv, "They roar and cry out;
some calling on them whom they killed, some on those they
have calumniated ; and calling they pray them whom they
have injured to give them pardon. " q Then every bush is a
wild beast, and every shadow is a ghost, and every glowworm
is a dead man's candle, and every lantern is a spirit.

Pallidumque visa

Matris lampade respicis Neronem.*

When Nero was distressed, he saw his mother's taper, and
grew pale with it.

11. (2.) The second effect is shame, which conscience
never fails to inflict secretly, there being a secret turpitude
and baseness in sin, which cannot be better expressed than by
its opposition and contradiction to conscience. Conscience
when it is right makes a man bold; " Qui ambulat simpli-
citer ambulat confidenter ; He that walks honestly walks
confidently," because he hath innocence and he hath reason on

J Bishop Taylor seems to have quoted from memory ; the original passage
runs thus : 'Erau3- fmut't n, KOU xaXawmv, tl fit* ous aVixrs/vav, i tfi ovf
v&girav' xttXiffarTt; S' ixcrtvouffi, xtti Jsovra*, tafcti ffifas iz%r,vKt ils T9|y X/^oxv, xa
Iila ff 6ou Fischer, p. 481. (J. R. P.)

r Statius, Sylv. ii. 7, 118. Bipont. p. 61.


his side. But he that sins, sins against reason, in which the
honour and the nobleness of a man consist ; and there-
fore shame must needs come in the destitution of them. For
as by reason men naturally rule, so when they are fallen from
it, unless by some accidental courages they be supported,
they fall into the state of slaves and sneaking people. And
upon this account it was that Plato said, " Si scirem deos
mihi condonaturos, et homines ignoraturos, adhuc peccare
erubescerem propter solam peccati turpitudinem ; If I were
sure God would pardon me, and men would not know my
sin, yet I should be ashamed to sin, because of its essential
baseness." The mistresses of our vile affections are so ugly
we cannot endure to kiss them but through a veil, either the
veil of excuse, or pretence, or darkness ; something to hide
their ugliness ; and yet even these also are so thin that the
filthiness and shame are not hid. " Bona conscientia turbatn
advocat, mala autem in solitudine anxia atque solicita est,"
said Seneca. An evil conscience is ashamed of light, and
afraid of darkness; and, therefore, nothing can secure it. But
being ashamed before judges and assemblies, it flies from
them into solitudes ; and when it is there, the shame is
changed into fear, and, therefore, from, thence it runs abroad
into societies of merry criminals, and drinking sanctuaries ;
which is nothing but a shutting the eyes, and hiding the
head, while the body is exposed to a more certain danger.
It cannot be avoided : it was, and is, and will eternally be,
true, " Perjurii poena divina exitium ; humana dedecus." 8
Which St. Paul perfectly renders, " The things whereof ye
are now ashamed; the end of those things is death."* Death
is the punishment which God inflicts, and shame is that
which comes from man.

12. (3). There is another effect which cannot be well told by
him that feels it, or by him that sees it, what it is ; because
it is a thing without limit and without order. It is a dis-
traction of mind, indeterminate, divided thoughts, flying
every thing, and pursuing nothing. It was the case of
Nebuchadnezzar, o/ ei/aXoy/<r/io/ avrov Sitrdgaffaov auric, ' his
thoughts troubled him.' " Varios vultus, disparilesque sen-
sus," u like the eophisters who in their pursuit of vainglory

Cicero de Legib. lib. ii. c. 9. Wagner, p. 55. l Rom. vi. 21.

A. Cell. lib. T, c. 1.


displeased the people, and were hissed from their pulpits;
nothing could amaze them more ; they were troubled like
men of a disturbed conscience. The reason is. they are fallen
into an evil condition, which they did not expect ; they are
abused in their hopes, .they are fallen into a sad state of
things, but they know not what it is, nor where they are, nor
whither it will bear them, nor how to get out of it. This
indeed is commonly the first part of the great evil ; shame
goes along with the sin, in the very acting it, but as soon as
it is acted, then begins this confusion ;

Nefas tandem incipiunt sentire, peractis


they thought of nothing but pleasure before ; but as soon as
they have finished, then they begin to taste the wormwood
and the coloquintida ; " perfecto demum scelere, rnagnitudo
ejus intellecta est," said Tacitus. w While they were doing it,
they thought it little, or they thought it none, because their
fancy and their passion ruled ; but when that is satisfied and
burst with a filthy plethory, then they understand how great
their sin is, but are distracted in their thoughts, for they
understand not how great their calamity shall be.

Occultum quatiente animo tortore flagellum,*

the secret tormenter shakes the mind, and dissolves it into
indiscrimination and confusion. The man is like one taken
in a lie, or surprised in a shameful act of lust, or theft ; at
first he knows not what to say, or think, or do, and his spi-
rits huddle together, and fain would go somewhere, but they
know not whither, and do something, but they know not

13. This confusion and first amazement of the conscience
in some vile natures, and baser persons, proceeds to irapu-
dencej and hardness efface.

Frontemque a crimine sumunt.

When they are discovered, they rub their foreheads hard, and
consider it cannot be worse, and therefore in their way they
make the best of it ; that is, they will not submit to the judg-
ment of conscience, nor suffer her infliction, but take the for-

v Juv. xiii. 239. Ruperti. " Annal. 14, 10. Ruperti, p. 369.

x Juv. xiii. 195.


tune of the banditti, or of an outlaw, rather than by the rule
of subjects suffer the penalty of the law, and the severity of
the judge. But conscience hath no hand in this, and what-
soever of this nature happens, it is in despite of conscience ;
and if it proceeds upon that method, it goes on to obstinacy,
hardness of heart, a resolution never to repent, a hatred of
God, and reprobation. For if conscience be permitted to
do its work, this confusion, when it comes to be stated, and
that the man hath time to consider it, passes on to fear ;
and that is properly the next effect.

14. (4.) An evil or a guilty conscience is disposed for fear ;
shame and fear cannot be far asunder.

Sin makes us ashamed before men, and afraid of God : an
evil conscience makes man a coward, timorous as a child
in a church- porch at midnight ; it makes the strongest
men to tremble like the keepers of the house of an old man's

'O ffuviffroQuv auru <ri, xav ? ^^affuraras,
'H ffvtiffi; aorov S-j>.5<rrov '.ivxi vroiti,

said Menander. 2 No strength of body, no confidence of
spirit, is a defensative against an evil conscience, which will
intimidate the courage of the most perfect warrior.

Qui terret, plus iste timet : sors ista tyrannis
Convenit : invideant claris, fortesque trucident,
Muniti gladiis vivant septique venenis,
Ancipites Labeant artes, trepidique minentur.

So Claudian 22 describes the state of tyrants and injurious
persons ; ' they do evil and fear worse ; they oppress brave men,
and are afraid of mean fellows ; they are encompassed with
swords, and dwell amongst poisons ; they have towers with
back doors and many outlets; and they threaten much, but
themselves are most afraid.' We read of Belshazzar, his
knees beat against each other upon the arrest made on him
by the hand on the wall, which wrote the sentence of God
in a strange character, because he would not read the writing
in his conscience. This fear is very great and very last-

T Epicharm. l Clerici, p. 216.

n De 4. Honor. Consol. 290. Gesuer, vol. i. p. 106.


ing, even in this world ; and is rarely well described by
Lucretius : a

Cerberus et Furia;-

neque sunt usquam, nee possunt esse, profecto :

Sed metus in vita poenarum pro male facteis
Est insignibus insignis ; scelerisque luela
Career, et horribilis de saxo jactus eorum,
Verbera, carnufices, robur, pix, lamina, tedae ;
Quae tamen et si absunt, at mens sibi conscia facteis,
Przmetuens, adhibet stimulos, torretque flagelleis.

Which description of the evil and intolerable pains and fears
of conscience is exceeded by the author of the Wisdom of
Solomon, 5 " Indisciplinatee animae erraverunt." That is the

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