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Vicegerents in it. In the Church, they are the Minifters of the Gospel, who are the spiritual Fathers of the People committed to their Charge. In a Family, they and their respective Inferiors are Husband and Wife, Parents and Children, Marters and Servants.

2. Superiors in Excellency are such as furpass others, either in the Gifts of the Mind, or in Wealth and Honour, or in Beneficence and Liberality, &c. and our Purpose must be to New, what are the several Rights that these Men may claim, and, confequently, what are the Duties that interfere between the Prince and Subject, the Pastor and People, Parents and Children, the Husband and Wife, the Master and Servant, Friend and Friend; between Superiors in Rank and Riches, in Parts and Abilities, and their re{pective Inferiors.

1. Between Prince and Subject.


HOEVER will give himself Pains to re

flect upon the State and Condition of Things in this World (and to consider how much stronger Influence Mens Passions have over them than their Reafon) may foon be convinced of the Necessity of Government to the Peace and Happiness of it. We may perceive, by the Injustice and Wickedness that is done every Day, in Defiance of Law and Punishment, what Mankind would be if these Restraints were withdrawn, and Will and Pleasure were the fole Principle of every one's ACtions. It is of happy Design therefore that God has appointed governing Powers in the World, for the Support and Comfort of human Society, to be his Ministers to us for Good, and Revengers to execute Wrath upon him that doth Exil. But then there Governors are not to look upon themselves as Persons exalted, by the immediate Direction of Heaven,

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to an Height above other Mortals, merely to be Arbitrators, at their own Pleasure, of the Lives and Fortunes of their Fellow-Creatures; but as Perfons called, by the Providence of God, to a difficult and laborious Task ; not to live in Eafe and Delicacy, but to watch, Day and Night, for the Good of that Society in which they preside; to be distinguished indeed from others by the Enfigns of Greatness and Authority, but this only to make them more capable of serving the Publick, and consulting the Interest of all their Subjects, in their endeavouring, by all proper Means, to promote the Honour and Interest of true Religion, but without ufurping an Authority over other Mens Consciences ; in their taking Care to have the Laws duly executed, and yet that Execution tempered with all the Lenity and Goodness that may be consistent with the publick Safety; in protecting their Subjects against all ourward Violence, and providing them such Things as are necessary for the Relief of their Wants; and in encouraging and promoting Persons of Merit and Probity, and making them the more peculiar Objects of their Favour and Confidence.

In the Language of Scripture, Kings and Queens are called the nursing Fathers and nursing Mothers of their People ; and the Terms (in what Sense soever we take them, whether for natural Parents, or for such as supply their Place in the Care and Tuition of Children, viz. Guardians and Nurses) do certainly imply a wonderful Trust reposed in Princes, and a wonderful Care, Sollicitude, and Tenderness required of them, with Relation to those that are committed to them. As therefore they are nursing Fathers, they are to secure and promote the temporal Peace and Happiness of their Subjects; and, accordingly, should think themselves obliged to look into the Affairs of the Kingdom with their


Own Eyes, and to see that all Magistrates under them do their Duty, in their respective Stations and Offices; to take Care that their Favourites incroach not upon them, or make use of the Credit they have with them, for the Oppression of the meanest of the People ; and to provide, that impartial Juftice be administered to all; but Justice (as we said before) that is tempered with Mercy, because they should remember, that their Thrones should be upholden by Mercy. And as they are nursing Fathers, with a more immediate Regard to the Church of God, their Bufiness must be to maintain and defend the true Religion ; to encourage Piety and Virtue ; to oppose and discountenance all Atheism and Infidelity, all Schisms and Heresies, and all Vice, and Wickedness, and Impiety of what Kind soever ; to use their utmost Endeavours to make all their Subjects good Men and good Christians; and, in order to this, not only to be exemplary themselves in Piety and Devotion, in Temperance and Moderation, and all other Virtues; but to take especial Care that Godliness be not defamed, and the Ways of Truth evil Spoken of, by Reason either of the ill Lives or ill Principles of those that incompass the Throne : For this was holy David's Resolution, and the Measure he designed to follow in his Government, when God had advanced him to the Kingdom of Ifrael : I will walk in my House in a perfe&t Heart": I will take no wicked Thing in Hand: I hate the Works of the Unfaithful; no fuck mall cleave unto

A froward Heart Mall depart from me: I will not know a wicked Perfon ; but mine Eyes fall lock upon such as are faithful in the Land ; and whojo leadeth a godly Life, be shall be my Servant : For

the Wicked from before the King, (lays his wise Son Solomon) and his Throne. Mall be established in Righteousness,

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To be short, as sovereign Power was ordained, by God for a publick Good, to guard and defend the Innocent, to shelter and relieve the Oppressed, to fence and propagate true Religion, and adjust and balance private Rights and Interests, every SubjeEt has a Claim to be protected by it, in his Person and legal Rights, in his just Liberties and Privileges, and in the Profession and Exercise of God's true Religion ; and the Prince, who, being invested with sovereign Power for this Purpose, either betrays, appresses, or any Way inflaves his Subjects himself, or, out of Negligence or Malice, permits others to do it, is an injurious Invader of their Rights and Properties, and, though not accountable to any buman Authority, lhall one Day answer for it at the Tribunal of God.

And, on the other Hand, as Kings are God's Vicegerents here on Earth, and reign by his Authosity, they have a Right to be obeyed in all Things, wherein they do not interfere with the Commands of God. As they are the Representatives of his Power and Majesty, they have a Right to be honoured and reverenced by their Subjects: And, as they were substituted by him to maintain the pubLick Weal, and to guard the Properties of their People, they have certainly a Right to be aided and affifted by them ; for ibey are God's Ministers, fays St Paul, attending continually upon this very Tbing : Render therefore to all their Dues ; Tribute, to whom Tribute is due ; Custom, to whom Custom ; Fear, to whom Fear; Honour, to whom Honour.

Sovereign Princes and States are the chief InAtruments which the Providence of God employsin his Administrations here below : To them is intrusted the Execution of all Laws; and Laws, we know, are the Source of every Advantage that redounds to Mankind from Society. Even ill Princes cannot help doing a great deal of Good,



bt preserving some Degree of Order and Government in the World ; but, when Virtue afcends the Throne, it dispenses Bleflings without Number and without Measure. . Seeing therefore, that, by the Administration of our Princes, we enjoy great Quietness, and many worthy Deeds are done to this Nation by their Care and Providence ; it is certainly our Duty to accept it always, and in all Places, with all Thankfulnefs; and, instead of censuring and reviling, to esteem them highly in Love, for their Works Sake.

Christian Charity and Beneficence is certainly a Debt which we owe to Kings as well as the meanest of their Subjects ; but how shall we extend our good Offices to those who move in so high a Sphere? How, but by entertaining a sincere Efteem for their Persons, and a good Opinion of their Administrations ; by concealing their Faults, and commending their Virtues ; by silencing the Clamours and fuppressing the Jealousies which

proud, and envious, and self-designing Men are too apt to propagate: These, together with our hearty Prayer to God for their Prosperity and Preservation, are the only Compensation, or Return, which most of us are capable of making them, for their Vigilance and Concern for the publick Safety; the Pains which they takes and the Hazard which they run, to secure it.

Moit Men, indeed, by their Condition of Life, are set at too great a Distance from the Springs of Government, to be rightly instructed in Facts and Circumstances, and much less to enter into the Reason and Foundation of publick Councils ; and therefore for such to cenfure the Conduct of their Superiors is talking without Knowledge, and judging without Examination. And even those who are placed in higher Stations, and have a nearer View of the publick Managementcannot but


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