The odious, despicable, and dreadfull condition of a drunkard
Odious, Despicable, and
Dreadfull condition of a
Drunkard; drawne to the
Life: to deterre others, and
cause them to decline
the wayes of
A hopefull way to cure Drunkennesse,
(the root of all evill, and rot of all good)
in such as are not (by long custome)
Composed, and Published for their good;
who (not for want of Ignorance) pride themselves
in drunken good-fellowship. Which probably may
open their eies, as the tasting of Hony did Jonathans;
and cause them to say as the Governour to the
Bridegroome, John 2.10. The good wine
was kept backe untill now.
By Junius Florilegus.
Printed by R. Cotes, and are to be sold by Nicholas Bourne at
the South entrance of the Royall Exchange, 1649.
PUBLISHED BY R. Cotes
What some Reverend Divines deem
of the DRUNKARDS CHARACTER, out
of which Quiver this Arrow is drawne.
HAving advisedly read over and perused aTreatise, bearing the name of R. Junius, which for some considerations came formerly abroad, vailed under the Title of The Drunkards Character, and Compleat Armour against evill society;we finde it to be for generality of discourse; as a large Map of most mens thoughts, words, and actions. For, besides that foule sinne of Drunkenness, and many other vices, which commonly accompany the same, very pithily, orderly, and elegantly, with much both sinew ous strength of Argument and variety of gracefull and delightfull illustrations therein discovered, and dealt with; we have further observed in it, such other subject matter, concerning the knowledge, beleefe, and life, of common Protestants, what too frequently it is, and what in truth it ought to be, (that it may answer to their profession, and the Titlethat they beare) wherein also all manner [Page]of Christian Gracesare illustrate, and set out by the foulnesse, and deformity of their opposite vices; that for the variety of usefull matter therein handled, together with the perspicuous, pleasant, and yet powerfull manner of expression; we conceive that it may very much conduce, both as a Glassefor persons generally, to see the face of their owne heart in; and as a Trumpetalowd sounding, to summon sinners to repentance: besides that unto young Scholars also it may be not unusefull, as an help to furnish them with matter concerning those common heads of Vertue and Vice, and most of the usuall Subjects aswel of Divinityas Morality: But likewise touching the manifold sleights and advantages of Satanand wicked men, in tempting to sinne, and drawing to perdition. In regard whereof we deeme it very worthy the reprinting with a fuller and further promising Title.
To the Reader.
EXperience teaches that no one thing (be it the Violet) will please every one. That nothing is more easie, then to finde a colour of exceptions. That mens censures are as various as their palats; that some are as deeply in love with vice, as others are with vertue. That crossed wickedness proves desperate; and in stead of yeelding, seeks for revenge of its own sins, upon others uprightness.
The Prophet also tells me my wages before hand, Come let us smite him with the Tongue, Jer. 18.18. And Solomon more expresly, He that reproveth a scorner, purchaseth to himselfe shame, and hee that rebuketh the wicked, getteth himselfe a blot, Prov. 9.7. Shall I then make my self the subject of every opinion wise and weak? Yes, I had rather hazard the censure of some, then hinder the good of others. Yea admit, in stead of their tongues, they should use their swords, (the case of John Baptist for reproving of Herod) Gods glory we are bound to redeeme, with our own lives.
Againe, if I do ill, no plea can warrant me; if well, I cannot bee discouraged with any censures. Nevertheless, that I may satisfie all honest minds, (lest they also should wrest my words beyond the level of my thoughts) that I may free my Reader and my selfe from mistaking, and being mistaken, (because it is not enough to find our own hearts clear, except also we clear our names, and the [Page] consciences of others) I will remove some rubs, level the ground, and pave a way to our ensuing matter.
What will be alledged against this discourse, my selfe (though I am no Antevorta) foresees; yea I could raise to their hand, all their objections, and as easily answer them. But two only deserve answering, the rest are not worth the repeating.
First, some will aske why in this Treatise of all the rest, my expressions are so light, and my comparisons so homely? And to these my answer is; that I may kill Goliah with his owne Sword; dispute with Drunkards in their owne Dialect: For either they understand no other language; or if so, they finde no more relish or sweetnesse in solid Divinity, then in the white of an Egge: because their palats are brought out of taste by the world, and lusts of the flesh.
Besides, this subject is lesse serious then any of the rest; And it is not possible with grave and modest words, to expresse, and paint out their light, vaine, and lascivious language and behaviour.
Secondly, if any that are addicted to this vice, (for whose gain I am content to lose) shall ask why I am so bitter? I would desire them (though in Christ, yea in common equity I might enjoine them) to consider these six ensuing circumstances; and then they will pardon my just vehemency, and only blame the foulnesse of this sin.
First, that the medicine is but fitted to the disease, the wedge but proportioned to the timber, which could not be avoided; for the harder, and more knotty our hearts are, the harder and stronger must be the blowes and wedges that must rive them. And nothing but a Diamond will cut a Diamond.
Secondly, without a discovery of our disease, there can be no recovery of our health. The sight of our filthinesse, is the first step toward cleannesse. And how many may blesse the time, that ever they were plainly dealt withall? witnesse Antiochus, and Antoninus the Emperour, S. Paul Acts 9.3, to 8. and those murtherers of the Lord of life,Acts 2.36, to 42.
Thirdly, they should consider, that I fight not against themselves, but against their sinnes; not with them, but against their enemies for them; knowing that unlesse those dye, they cannot live.
Fourthly, it would also be considered, that the Physitian is not to be blamed for the paine of his Patient; but the disease: not the Chirurgeon, but the wound: which he endeavours by all meanes to cure. And wounds more dangerous, require more dolorous plaisters: Yea if Physick bee not strong enough to purge out the disease, it increaseth it. Which makes a good Physitian give sharpe medicines and bitter potions, that he may make short diseases, and procure sound health. And for the most part, those things that are least pleasing, are most wholsome.
Fiftly, let them consider, that all is done in love, and for their good. And even those pils which are most bitter, will downe, when, they are wrapt up in love, and for our healths. Yea wee will suffer incisions, even the opening of our veines, and the letting out of our bloud, when we know it is done in love, and to save our lives.
Yea, neither the Physitian nor Chirurgeon heales us without paine; and yet we both reward and thanke them. Which is our very case; for even those invectives that are most keen, and sharpe, do but resemble Jonathans Arrowes, which were not shot to hurt David, but to give him warning, and to occasion his escape from Sauls fury. Whereas their scoffes and slaunders against us, that will not runne with them to the same excesse of riot; may fitly be compared to Sanls speare, which was darted on purpose not to hurt onely, but to murther and to destroy.
Yea let them be read without prejudice, and (by Gods blessing) [Page] they shall be unto them, as Davids harpe was to Saul, which frighted away the evill spirit from him, 1 Sam. 16.23. Or as the Cocks crowing to Peter, which occasioned his repentance, Mat. 26.74, 75. Or as those Messengers to Lot, that came to fetch him out of Sodome, that he might not feele the fire and brimstone which followed. I. 19. Yea as the Angel was 10 Peter, that opened the Iron gates, loosed his bands, brought him out of prison, and delivered him from the thraldom of his enemies. I 12. I
Sixtly, let them consider, that if these judgements bee so dreadfull to heare: how terrible will they be to feel? The Law (Waspe-like) stings shrewdly, but Satan that Hornet will sting worse a great deale: but if men will be warned by the former, (as who would not rather be converted then confounded? or who had not rather a Booke or Sermon should awaken him, then fire and brimstone?) they may prevent the latter.
These things premised, (though there needs neither reasons to be given, nor excuse, or apology to be made, where the Word is our warrant, and the glory of God our aime,) most humbly beseeching God, who only hath the key of the heart, and can open the eyes of these poore soules, to see the miserable slavery and danger they are in: to blesse this weake meanes prescribed for their recovery, and others warning. I leave its successe to Him, its use to the world; and referre my selfe to the honest and intelligent Readers judgement: as for others, let them smite me being absent I care not; for their dispraise is a mans honor, their praise his dishonour.
1.1. The Odious, Despicable, and Dreadfull Condition of a Drunkard, drawne to the LIFE: to deterre others, and cause them to decline the wayes of DEATH.
A Drunkard (and I take him for such, that drinkes more for lust, or pride, or covetousnesse, or feare, or good fellowship, or to drive away time, or to still conscience, then for thirst;) being one of those Creatures, which God never made in the Creation: (like that spoken of Gen. 36.24.) is halfe a Man, halfe a Beast; or one that was borne a Man, lives a Beast; or one that hath a Bestiall heart in a Case of humane flesh. For through custome of sinne, and a just judgement of God upon it, he hath his heart changed from mans nature, and a beasts heart given him in the stead; as it fared with Nebuchadnezzar, Dan. 4.16.
Whereas other sinnes deprive a man of Gods Image, this deprives him of mans; and for the present, robs him of himselfe; leaving him neither the use of reason, nor speech, without which he is no better then a Beast. Nor does hee so much surpasse a Beast in his shape, as he outstrips a Beast in beastlinesse, as Hermes well observes. Yea reckon up all the brutish conditions, observeable in other Beasts; and you shall finde every of them to meet in a Drunkard, as Rivers in the Sea. As produce the very worst qualities, in the very worst o Beasts, and this Beast will match them all, without being matcht by any; as for instance.
In one beastly quality, he is like the Jerffe, a Beast in the North parts of Swetia, whose property (as Gesner out of Olaus Magnus relates) is, when he hath killed his prey, or found some carkasse, to fall a devouring the same, and never leave feeding, untill his belly bee puffed up, and strouteth like a Bagpipe, and then not being able to hold any more, he goeth betweene two narrow Trees, and straineth out backward what he hath eaten; and so being made empty, returneth againe to the Carkasse and filleth himselfe as before, and then straineth it out the second time; and so continueth filling and emptying himselfe, untill he hath devoured all; which being consumed he hunteth after more; and this is the course of his whole life. In another particular, he is like the Asses of Thuscia: who when they have fed upon [Page 2] Hemlocks, sleepe so soundly, that they seeme to be dead, in so much that the Country men many times, more then flea off halfe their skins, before they will awake. And so of the rest, which I can but name; for in heart he is a Swine; in head a Cephalus; in tongue an Aspe; in belly a Lumpe; in appetite a Leech; in sloath an Ignavus; a Goat for lust; a Siren for flattery; a Hiena for subtilty; a Panther for cruelty; in envying a Basiliske; in antipathy to all good, a Lexus; in hindering others from good, a Remora; in life a Salamander; in conscience an Ostrich, &c.
And what saith Chrysostome to such an one? shall I think thee a Man, when thou hast all the qualities of a Beast? swillest like a Swine? kickest like an Asse? neighest after women like a Horse? ragest in lust like a Bull? ravenest like a Beare? stingest like a Scorpion? rakest like a Wolfe? art as fierce as a Tyger? as subtill as a Fox? as impudent, and shamelesse as a Dog? no, I see nothing of Man in thee, save thy shape: and that affrights me the more, when I see a Beast in the likenesse of a Man.
§ 2. And yet poore soules, they like their condition so well, that they would not change upon any termes; for as those Beasts spoken of by Plutarch, renounced the benefit of Circes grant, and desired Ulysses that hee would not presse them with the reaccepting of reason; so call Drunkards from their brutish sensuality, they will reject the offer: what, make them men? no, they thanke you as much as if you did, they had rather be beasts still. As the have no reason, so they will heare none. Yea, they are more brutish then those beasts: for whereas Christ by us would reconcile them to God; as Joab did Absalom to David, by the woman of Tekoah: they cry we come to torment them. Their case being like his in the Gospell, that called himselfe Legion: who having beene possest with Devils a long time, was at length very loath to part with his guests. Yea he thought himselfe tormented, when Christ came to cast out them, and save him. Marke 1.24. Luke 8.28. And the reason is, Drunkennesse bestiates the heart, and spoiles the braine, overthrowes the faculties and organs of repentance, and resolution; turnes reason into exile, and poisoneth the very soule of a man: As how doth it damme up the head and spirits with mud? how doth it infatuate the understanding? blinde the judgement, pervert the will, and corrupt all the affections? how doth it surprize the thoughts, entrap the desires, and bring all the powers and faculties of the soule out of order? as experience proves and the Word also; which informes us, that the excesse of wine takes away the heart; makes men mad, feelish, and outragious; makes them forget God and his Lawes. Prov. 20.1. and 31.3, 4, 5. Yea that it makes men utterly to fall away from God, untill they are uncapable of returning, Prov. 23.35. Esay 5.11, 12. and 56.12. For by this sinne the heart is hardened, the spirit quenched, and the body of sinne with all its lusts so strengthened, that it keeps them in finall impenitency, Esay 22.12, 13, 14. and 28.7, 8. Rom. 13.13, 14. Gal. 5.21. 1 Cor. 6.10. Eph. 5.18. 1 Pet. 2.11. Yea the soule by it, is made like a City broken downe, and without walls, Prov. 25.28. By all which it appeares, that these uncleane beasts which wallow in the myre [Page 3] of sensuality; these brutish Drunkards; which transforme themselves through excesse; are even those swing whom the Legion carries headlong to the Sea, or pit of Perdition, Mat. 8.32. for otherwise the worst of Beasts will be found in a far better condition.
§ 3. And indeed to give beasts their due, it is a wrong to Beasts to call drunkennesse their sinne; for generally they are sober, keepe within the bounds of moderation, and know when they have drunke enough. Beasts also keepe the prerogative of their Creation, whereas Drunkards lose (yea shame) theirs. Nor do Beasts like Drunkards, prove cruell to themselves &c. so that in many particulars a beast is a man, to such men. But see this proved also.
Such is the power of sinne, that it made God become Man, Angels become Devils, and Men become Beasts. But this sinne, this vile, and odious sinne of drunkennesse, hath a more superlative power; for wine bereaves the Drunkard, not onely of reason and speech, (which two things distinguish Beast and Man;) but likewise of sense and motion, wherein beasts excell stocks and stones. For it so blockifies them for the present, that they may fitly be compared to the Idols of the Heathen; which have eyes and see not, eares and heare not, tongues and speake not, noses and smell not, (no not their owne vomit) handes and handle not, feet and walke not, being as dead men that can neither sit, stand, nor goe.
§ 4. Or if they will (notwithstanding all this) be taken for men; yea admit as men, they have some advantage above beasts, or stocks: it is a miserable advantage, that onely makes them apt to evill, yea the worst of evils; and capable of an Hell: which is all the advantage they have; for to what men may they be likened? they are but like that lunaticke man mentioned Mat. 17.15, 16. who being sore vexed with an evill spirit, fell ofttimes into the fire, and ofttimes into the water: whom all the Disciples could nor cure, untill the Master himselfe came. Or like that man spoken of Marke 5.2, to 6. who being possest with the Devil, lived amongst the graves, and cut himselfe with stones: and whom no man could tame. For they love none but base company, base places, and base courses. And what does their frequent and horrible oathes but cut them deeper, then those stones did him? Nor is Moses or Aaron, Cesar or Paul, Minister of the Word, or Minister of the Sword, able to restraine or tame them.
You may thinke it an hard saying, as the Disciples did that of our Saviour John 6.53, to 61. But let me tell you from Gods Word, that the corporall possession of evill spirits, is not so rare; as the spirituall is rife. For no naturall man is free: as for instance, one hath the spirit of errour, 1 Tim. 4.1. another the spirit of feare, 2 Tim. 1.7. another the spirit of fornication, Hos. 4.12. another the spirit of falshood, Mat. 24.11. another the spirit of blasphemy, Rev. 2.9. and 13.1, 5, 6. another the spirit of slumber, Rom. 11.8. another the spirit of giddinesse, Esay 29.9, to 15. another the spirit of pride; all have the spirit of the world, 1 Cor. 2.12. But Drunkards for the most part are possest with more evill spirits, or Devils, then Mary Magdalen [Page 4] was, for every raigning sinne (whereof each Drunkard hath more then a good many) is a Devill; as Augustine, Basil, andGregory, affirme.
Besides, other Scriptures make plaine that they are as truly, though spiritually, carried by evill spirits into the deeps of their knowne wickednesse; and consequently are posting Helwards; as ever the Gadarean Hogs were carried by them downe the precipice into the Sea. For they are the Devils captives, at his command, and ready to do his will, as is evident by 2 Tim. 2.26. Eph. 2.2. 2 Cor. 4.4. Yea hee is their Father, Gen. 3.15. John 8.44. Their King, John 12.31. and 14.30. And their God, 2 Cor. 4.4. Even ruling over, and working in them his pleasure, Eph. 2.2, 3. 2 Tim. 2.26. For he enters into them, and puts it into their hearts what he will have them to do; as he did formerly into Judas, John 13.2. Ananias and Saphira, Acts 5.3. and David, 1 Chron. 21.1. Yea he opens their mouths and speaks in, and by them as he did by the Serpent, Gen. 3.1, to 6. Ahabs 400 Prophets, 1 Kings 22.22. and Peter, Mat. 16.22, 23. stretcheth forth their hands, and acts by them, as he did by Herod, Acts. 12.1, 2, &c. and still does by Magistrates, when they cast the servants of God into prison, Revel. 2.10. So that as Paul, being guided by the good spirit of God, could say, I live not, but Christ lives in me, Gal. 2.20. So may Drunkards say, we live not, but the Devill lives in us, 2 Cor. 4.4. John 14.30. Eph. 2.2. 2 Tim. 2.26.
Not that the mind of man is capable of a violation, either from Satan, or any else: nor can the wickedst man tax any for his yeelding but himselfe. Only this is the difference; Drunkards are driven as free Horses; that need only the shaking of the hand to the Taverne, to the Sives, to this or that evill company, or wicked action. Yea, they are so at the Devils becke, that hee needs no more but hold up his finger, (suggest the thought, or say the word) and 'tis done: As if hee appoint them to lye, they will lye: if he command them to deceive, they will deceive: if he bid them slander, they will slander, and that as falsly as he: if he perswade them to revenge, to persecute, &c. they wil do it as spitefully and fully as he could do them himself. And so of every other sinne. If he but say to them, let there be an oath, a quarrell, or the like; instantly they obey him. Yea, they are so greedy of sinne, that were there no Devill to do his office, they would beget destruction on themselves. If Satan should not feed them with temptations, they would tempt him for them, and snatch their owne bane.
§ 5. It's true, the Drunkard may seem to be in a better condition: as first he may have a name to live, but indeed he is dead, as S. John speakes. Secondly, he may have the appearance of a man, but indeed he is a beast, as Jeremiah speakes. Thirdly, he may be thought a sound man; but indeed he is demonaicall; obsessed, or rather possessed with a Devill, (yea many Devils) and more miserable then such an one, because it is a Devill of his owne choosing, as Basill speakes. Yea they may most fitly be compared to the Devill himselfe; whom they most of all resemble, [Page 5]
- 1 In Surpassing others in sinne,
- 2 In Tempting others to sinne,
- 3 In Drawing others to perdition.
So that it were well for them, if their condition were not worse then the Beasts that perish; for their misery is determined with their lives. Or those dead images, for they can do neither good nor ill; but Drunkards are dead to all goodnesse whatsoever; but alive, yea, very active to all wickednesse. Or such as are really, and corporeally possest: for Satan carryes not such but against their wills: as he did that man in the Gospel into the fire and water, so using violence to their bodies; which makes them Satans owne sins, and not theirs: whereas these are carryed willingly, and so become Agents in what they do; and as guilty of the sinnes they commit, as the Tempter himselfe, when he makes them abuse their eyes to wantonness, their mouths to filthinesse, and makes their feet swift to shed bloud. So that though their bodies are usually free from that possessive power, yet Satan hath a farre greater power in the voluntary motions of their bodies and soules. So that a Drunkard is the the most despicable piece of all humanity; and not worthy to be reckoned amongst either men, or beasts, or any other terrestriall creatures. Indeed in their want of reason, they are but transformed into beasts; and in their want of sense, and motion, but into stocks: but in their abuse of reason, in the delight they take in sinne, and in their mischievous tempting others to sinne, and drawing others to perdition, they are transformed into Devils. As will appeare when I have cut up and anatomized this Chimera, (for hitherto I have onely presented him whole and intire) wherein that I may be briefe, let a few of his ill qualities in stead of many, serve to be rehearsed, or spoken of; and that sparingly: and by them you may guesse at the residue; for as huge as the Sea is, we may taste the saltnesse thereof in a drop. Onely that you may finde it a short cut, a sure and easie way to make you loath drunkenness and love sobriety: seriously consider as you goe along, what a wofull slavery it is, to be possest with a drunken Devill.
§ 6. One base quality denoting the Drunkards slavish condition, and which first offers it self, is this; Every houre seemes a day, and every day a month to him, which is not spent in a Tap-house; and therefore where ever his house is, his dwelling is at the Alehouse, except all his mony be spent or hee in bed. Yea they seeme to have nailed their eares to a Taverne, or Alehouse, Esay 5.11. and to have agreed with Satan,Master it is good being here, let us build, &c. For as they rise up early to follow Drunkennesse, Esay 5.11. so their first flight is from their beds to the Tap-house, or Taverne: those common quagmires of all filthinesse, where too many drawing their Patrimonies through their throats, exhaust and lavish out their substance; and lay plots and devises how to get more. For hence they fall either to open courses of violence, or secret mischiefe; till at last the Jaile prepares them for the Jibbet; for lightly they sing through a red Lettis, before they cry through a Grate.
But this is the worke of many months; do but follow them step by step, and you shall observe, that so soone as they are upon the Alebench, up comes [Page 6] every mans pot uncalled for, upon paine of losing their custome for a month after: which being doft are filled againe; for it is the waiters office to see that the pots be either alwayes full or empty.
§ 7. Now if you will know the reason, why every morning their first sacrifice is offered to Bacchus; it is this; First, they are sicke in the morning, untill they have qualified the old heat with a new; and so they cure sinne with sinne; which yet is no other, then to heale an Ulcer by deading the flesh: which indeed doth not make a man whole, but insensible of paine.
Secondly, by a long and desperate custome, they have turned delight, and infirmity, into necessity; so that without wine they cannot live: as having by a kind of frequency, made other mens physick their naturall food; whereby they bring upon themselves such an unsatiable thirst; that they will as willingly leave to live, as leave their excessive drinking. For let them bee convinc't by their Physitian, that it will even kill them if they continue it, their answer shall be, as good be buried, as so much debarred of their appetites. Neither is it possible, the appetites of these Leeches should ever be satisfied.
Or in case thirst doth not provoke them, they will drinke before they a e dry, drinke untill they become dry, so that thirst overtakes drunkennesse, as fooles runne into the River to avoid a shower of raine. Yea while they are in the drinking Schoole, they are bound by their saw of good fellowship, (and would be so, were there no such law) to be pouring in at theirmouths, or whiffing out at their noses; one serving as a shooinghorne to the other: for Tobacco being hot and dry, must have a qualifier of cold and moist from the pot; and that againe being cold and moist, must have a qualifier of hot and dry, from the pipe: which makes them like Rats baned Rats, drinke and vent, vent and drinke; Sellingers round and the same againe. Besides they drinke one liquor to draw on another; not to quench, but to increase thirst; not to qualifie, but to inkindle heat. In which their swinish swilling, they resemble so many frogs in apuddle, or water snakes in a pond: for their whole exercise, yea religion, is to drinke; they even drowne themselves on the dry land. As O the deluges of wine, and strong drinke, that one true Drunkard devoures, and causeth to be devoured! who never drinkes but double, for he must be pledged. Yea, if there be ten in company, every one must drinke as much as he; and he will drinke untill his eyes stare like two blazing Stars, so that they drinke more spirits in a night, then their flesh and braines be worth.
But in the meane time; how many thousands which are hard driven with poverty, or the exigents of warre, might be relieved, with that which these men spend like beasts? while that is throwne out of one Swines nose, and mouth, and guts, which would refresh a whole family? And doth not the very eccho of this sinne, this excessive devouring the good creatures of God, together with the teares of the poore; dayly cry in his eares for vengeance on all that use it? if not for a famine upon the whole land for their sakes, [Page 7] (who turne the Sanctuary of life, into the shambles of death,) and because they are suffered? Yes undoubtedly. Yea O Lord, it is thy unspeakable mercy, that our Land (which hath beene so long sicke of this drunken disease, and so long surfetted of this sinne) doth not spue us all out, which are the inhabitants.
§ 8. Now by that these gut mongers have doubled their mornings draught, or gulped downe so many quarts, as they can well overcome, (for I will tye my selfe, to the Drunkards method) their hearts come up as easily as some of their drinke. For wine, saith Plato, is the daughter of verity; the glasse of the minde, saith Euripides: Yea let him get but a cup or two more in his pate, his limitlesse tongue shall clatter like a window loose in the winde; and you may assoone perswade a stone to speake, as him to be silent. For then it fares with his clapper, as with a sicke mans pulse; which alwayes beats, but ever out of order. Yea one Drunkard hath tongue enough for twenty men: it being like that clapper at Roane, which is so bigge, that it is said to weigh without the Bell, more then sixe hundred pounds. And what is their discourse?
First, they discover all secrets; for like as when the wine purgeth, saith Plutarch, that which is in the bottome cometh up to the brim, and swimmeth aloft; or else it breaketh the vessell, and runneth all abroad: Even so drunkennesse discovers the secrets of the heart. And indeed, if discretion, and moderation be as hoopes to a vessell; how should these hogsheads keepe their liquor, if ye take away those hoopes? It is the property of a drunkard to disgorge his bosome with his stomach, to empty his minde with his maw: he can ill rule his hands, but worse his tongue; fat cups oyle that so, that it cannot sticke, and makes it so laskative, that it cannot hold. And whatsoever is in the heart of a sober man, is found in the tongue of a Drunkard. Drinke disapparels the soule, and is the betrayer of the minde: it turnes the key of the tongue, and makes it unlock that counsell, which before wisdome had in keeping. And experience shewes, that when a man is drunke, you may thrust your hand into him like an Eele skinne, and strip his inside outwards.
Or suppose you urge him not, the wine having set his tongue at liberty, it shall resemble Bacchus his Liber pater, and goe like the sayle of a Windmill: for as a great gale of winde whirleth the sayles about; so aboundance of wine whirleth his tongue about, and keeps it in perpetuall motion. For now he rayles, now he scoffes, now he lyes, now he slanders, now he seduces, talkes bawdy, sweares, bannes, foames; and cannot be quiet untill his tongue be wormed. Nor is he more lewd then lowd; for commonly a lewd tongue is a lowd one; and a lowd tongue a lewd one. Impudent speakers are like gaping oysters; which being opened either stinke, or there is nothing in them.
§ 9. But to keepe close to Drunkards, this Cacodemons discourse is all quarrelling, scoffing, or scurrilous: for as he hath a spightfull tongue in his anger, so he hath a beastly tongue in hismirth; as these two inseparably attend each other.[Page 8]
First, a spightfull tongue in his anger; for if you mark him then, as having more rage then reason; he enterlaceth all his discourse, either with reviling the present, or backbiting the absent. Now all his prayers are curses, and all his relations lyes: as talkative, and lying, are two birds which alwayes flye out of one nest. To be short, heare him when he is in this veine, and but seriously consider his condition, you would think, that by a just judgment of God he were metamorphosed, like Hecuba the wife of Priamus, into a dog; for without question their wits are shorter, and their tongues longer then to demonstrate them rationall creatures.
Secondly, the Drunkards communication is ever filthy, and beastly, full of all ribaldry, and baudinesse: no filthy talke, or rotten speech whatsoever, comes amisse to a Drunkard. Yea no word savours well with them, that is not unsavoury: their onely musicke (and so it fares with all the rude rabble) is ribaldry; modesty, and sober merriment with them is dulnesse. So that from the beginning to the end, he belcheth forth nothing, but what is as farre from truth, piety, reaso , modesty; as that the moone came down from Heaven, to visit Mahomet.
O the beastlinesse which burnes in their unchast, and impure mindes! that smoakes out of their polluted mouthes! a man would thinke that even the Devill himselfe should blush, to heare his childe so talke; as how doth his mouth run over with falshoods, against both Christians, and Preachers? what speaks he lesse then Whoredomes, Adulteries, incests at every word? Yea, heare two or three of them talke, you will change the Lycaomans language, and say, Devils are come up in the likenesse of men.
And because it is a small matter with them, to meddle with their equalls, or to sit upon their parish Priest, (as those Hogsheads terme him) in such meetings they will visit a whole Drocesse, and Province; nay, the sagest Judge and gravest Counsellor, and greatest Peere in the land; must do service to their Court, and be summoned before the Alebench: according to that in the Psalmes, They set their mouths against Heaven, and their tongues walke through the earth, Psal. 73.9. And having huft their smoake into the face of these, they will have a health to King Charles; and what not, for the honour of England.
§ 10. Thirdly, from wicked talking, hee proceeds to cursed, and impious swearing, blaspheming, &c. as you shall rarely see a Drunkard, but hee is a great swearer: and not of petty oathes, but those proditious, and fearfull ones, of wounds and bloud; the damned language of Ruffins, and Monsters of the earth: together with God danne me, which words many of them use superficially, if they repent not. Yea they sweare and curse, as if Heaven were deafe to their noise. O the numberlesse number of oaths and blasphemies, that one blackemouthed Drunkard spits out in defiance as it were ofGod, and all prohibitions to the contrary! I dare affirme it, had some one of them three thousand pounds per annum, his means would scarce hold out, to pay those small twelve peny mulcts, which our Stante Law imposes upon swearers, were it duly executed; and if so, to what number will the oaths and curses amount, which are sworne, and uttered through the whole Land? Yea in [Page 9] some one Alehouse, or Taverne; where they fit all day in Troopes, doing that in earnest, which we have seen boyes do in sport; stand on their heads and shake their heeles against Heaven. Where even to heare, how the name of the Lord Jesus is pierced, and Gods name blasphemed, would make a dumbe man speake, a dead man almost to quake: in which they resemble a mad dog that flyeth in his Masters face that keepes him. But how they sweare away their salvation, curse away their blessing: I have shewen at large, in another Tract.
§ 11. Now after the pots for a while have stopt all their mouthes, (though every man had his share before) and they forgot what was formerly spoken; You shall have one for very pure love, and want of other expression, weepe in his fellowes bosome: another sit kissing of his companion, not without some short sentence, nothing to the purpose. A third setting his mouth on the racke with laughter, (wise were the man that could tell at what.) A fourth swaggering, and swearing, because the wine was brought him no sooner. A fift (for I passe him that sits there in a corner nodding, and slavouring) fals downe uppon his marrow bones, in devotion to Bacchus, and up with the pot handsmooth. After which every one that is awake sings his song, seasoning the same with many a goodly belch: their one in stead of a Harpe, takes a knife and a quart pot; with which hee will make fine musicke. Another in his song commends his mistris; another the goodnesse of the wine; another being better skilled in prose then meeter, relates all the passages between him and his wife at home. Where to heare how they all lay their heads together; plot and consult how to charme and tame their poore wives: would make a discreet Maid resolve never to marry so long as shee is able to worke with a knitting needle. Another tels how many quarts, he and so many more dranke at such a meeting; another beginnes to argue of Religion, and matters of State; another (for wine descending, causeth words still to ascend) bragges of his lying with such a woman, into whose company he could never yet be admitted; another again boasts how he jeered such a Roundhead or Puritane: (for so are all abstemious men, in the Epicures words, or a beasts language) and the drinke having bitten him, he runnes up and downe like a mad dog, snapping at every body; and many a good man may say with David, I became a song of the drunkards. Another quarrels with his friend, that after the third health refuseth to drinke any more: and being at length delivered of their company, they dispute the case about his departure; and are so vext, that they gnaw their owne tongues for spight; and call him the basest names their blockheads can thinke of; every one stoutly affirming, that he can be no honest man who refuseth to pledge them. For as the utmost of a Drunkards honesty is good fellowship, so it is an unpardonable crime, not to drinke equall with the rest, or to depart while they are able to speake sense. Whence many have lost their lives, because they would not drink. Another sals a rhyming all in Satyre against the rest that are absent; and perhaps steepes his jest in his own laughter; which being liked, and laughed at, they all fall a rhyming; [Page 10] then every one in his order must play the Poet out of the inspiration of Bacchus only; for Sibylla like, they never yeeld any Oracle, except they are first possest with a fury: and the Muses may go hang for any roome they have here.
Their Library is a large roome, ranked full of Pots, Cannes, Glasses, Tobacco pipes, rashers on the coales,red herrings, a gammon of Bacon, Caveare, Anchovis, or such like shooinghornes to whet on their appetites, (I meane to more drinke; for that they are no Trencher men, is all their boast, and all they have to be proud of,) together with a Jordane for their urine on the one side, and a boule for their vomit on the other. For they will vomit, as if they were so many live Whales spuing up the Ocean: which done, they can drinke againe afresh.
§ 12. Now although the wisest of them cannot make two true verses in his mother tongue, in three houres: yea although they be the veriest lacklatins, and the most unalphabetical raggabasha's that ever lived: yet notwithstanding (for stand well they cannot) they will one with a coale, another with a candle, fill all the wals and seelings with Epithalamiums, Elegies, and Epitaphs; which done are expounded to the rest of the company, if any be awake to heare them. Your eares would blister to read them; though it would do a deafe mans heart good to heare them, or a blinde mans to see them.
And yet poore soules they thinke themselves wiser then Solomon; for being bribed with selfe conceit, what cannot they do, what do they not know, what will they not say? Whence it is their speech is much though little to the purpose: and what ever the question be, the truth is on their side: all is spoken in print that is spoken by them, though their phrase (the apparell of their speech) hath a rash outside, and fustian linings. Yea all the Drunkards Geese are Swans; and all their vertues ten foot long. As for faults they have none; for poore soules they see neither their slips, nor wants. In a word, they hold all the world Dunces, besides themselves and will sweare they are but shallow fellowes, that do not drinke sacke.
Alas, if they can but breake a jest (as many of them are like Sarmantius a gentleman of Rome; who was famous only for his scoffing;) then they conceit of themselves as Menecrates did, who (although not worthy to be Aesculapius his Apothecaries boy) would needs be Jupiter; and to speake rightly, the beane of all their honour, lyes in scoffes, and jeeres; for take from these Aspes but their poyson and sting, you utterly undo them; they have nothing left of any use. All their worth lyes in wit-crackers, as some in the Netherlands have their wealth in squibs, and fire-workes, though it were happy for them, if they wanted this wit too; and Satan should do them a greater pleasure, if he did not so prompt them in scoffes: for like Absaloms haire, it proves but an ornament to hang themselves with all; and the best office their wit does them, is either to spit out friends with their tongues, or laugh them into enemies.
§ 13. But are they so wise, because they thinke themselves so? No, no [Page 11] more then Simon Magus was great, because he called himselfe a great man. For what ever they thinke, by the rule of scripture every Drunkard is a foole, Prov. 9.6. And experience shewes, that the greatest bowzars are the greatest buzzards in the world: that they have most leaden conceits, dull understandings, drossy wits, grosse and muddy affections. A fooles voice (saith Solomon) is knowne by a multitude of words, Ecclesiastes 10.14. and babling drunkards can better afford you a Sea of words, then a drop of wit. As marke whether their discourse be not more sound then substance; winde then matter; as ever where is least braine, there is most tongue, and lowdest, saith Socrates: even as a Bruers Cart upon the stones, makes most noise, when his vessels are emptiest; the full vessell gives you a soft answer, but sound liquor: so a knowing, and solid man will either be silent, or his words shall be better then silence; whereas they that speake much, seldome speake well. I might proceed to his knowledge in the best things; and shew you that whereas some are like the Moone at full, have all their light towards Earth, none towards Heaven: others like the Moone at wane, or change; have all their light to Heaven wards, none to the Earth: Drunkards are like the Moone in Eclipse, as having no light in it selfe; neither towards Earth, nor towards Heaven. Though they are apt to thinke themselves Giants for wit, and Eagles for light and judgement even in divinity also: which makes them so put themselves forward: as how oft have I seen a Case of Leather stuft with winde, (as he in Marcellus Donatus thought himselfe) A very beefe brained fellow, that hath had only impudence enough to shew himselfe a foole; thrust into discourses of Religion, thinking to get esteeme; when all that he hath purchased thereby, hath been only the hisse of the wise, and a just derision from the abler judgements. Not unlike that German Clowne, who undertook to be very ready in the Ten Commandements; but being asked by the Minister which was the first? he answered, Thou shalt not eat. If you doubt of it, do but aske the Drunkard a reason of his faith; and you shall see that hee can no more tell you, then the Winde can tell which last blow'd off my Hat.
Yea the Drunkard is such a foole, that he would be begged for a foole: I would faine know whether is wisest, the prodigall waster, or the covetous griper? he that with a wanton eye, a licorish tongue, and a gamesome hand, indiscreetly ravels out his Ancestors faire possessions, it may bee an hundreth pounds per annum in three yeares: and then leads the rest of his dayes in prison, there to repent at leisure; having for his attendants sorrow, griefe, derision, beggery, contempt, &c. Or he that to get an hundred pounds per annum, and only possesse, not use the same after he hath got it, perhaps three yeares: is content to be weeping and wayling, and gnashing of teeth in the prison of hell for evermore? without question these two are both fools alike. But that Drunkards are none of the wisest, I shall shew in the effects of drunkennesse: In the meane time I'le acquaint you with the causes, And
§ 14. First, one maine cause why their heaven is the Taverne, whence they [Page 12] never depart untill they have cast up the reckoning: why like horses they are onely guided by the mouth, is this; the pot is no sooner from their lips, but they are melancholy; and their hearts as heavy, as if a milstone lay upon it; resembling the fly Pyrausta, which dyes if out of the fire. I call it melancholy, because they call it so; but the truth is, they are vexed like Saul with an evill spirit; which nothing will drive away but drinke, and tobacco; which is to them, as Davids Harp was to him, 1 Sam. 16.23.
They so wound their consciences with oathes, intentionall murthers,rapes, and other the like actuall uncleannesse; and so exceedingly provoke God; that they are even in this life rewarded with the strapadoes of an humane soul; wrackt in conscience, and tortured with the very flashes of hel fire: which makes them many times to lay violent hands upon themselves; being never well, nor in their owne place till they be in hell, Acts 1.25.
When the horror of their oathes, blasphemies, thesis, whoredomes, and other prodigious uncleannesse hath caused a dejection of spirit, and the worme of conscience to sting them; (as it fared with Cain, when he had murthered his brother Abel) how should they remedy it? but (as if Satan alone could expell Satan) straight to the Taverne, and drinke sorrow, and care away. Or perhaps there is a factor for hel present, that cheares him up as Jezebel did Ahab; when he was sicke for want of Naboths vineyard, 1 Kings 21.7. crying, Come, you are melancholy; let us both to the Taverne, and Brothel-house; and so cures all his sadnesse for that time with a charme: wherein neverthelesse the principall ingredient is drinke; the common refuge of melancholy sinners, their constant and never failing friend; to which also they are as constant: for when did the Sun ever see some of them sober; and how are our Cities, and Townes pestered, and our streets strewed with these filths? And this is the maine ground of all; for as they that have curst and shrewish wives at home, love to stray abroad: so these men being molested with a scolding conscience, are faine continually to drinke, play, riot, go to bed with their heads full of wine, and no sooner awake but to it againe. So that their consciences must knock at the doore a thousand times, and they are never at home, or at leisure to be spoke withall. Indeed at last they must be met, and found by this enemy, even as Ahab was by Eliah; stay they never so long, and stray they never so far, they must home at last, sicknesse will waken them, conscience must speake with them as a Master with his Trewant Scholar, after a long absence; and then there are no men under Heaven, who more need that prayer Lord have mercy upon them. For a wicked mans peace will not alwayes last; at the end his guilt will gnaw him, with so much a sharper tooth. Neither are they morejocund in prosperity, then in dysasters they are amazed.
Whereas they should eate, and drinke, and do all things to the glory of God; they drinke to this end only, that they may the easier forget God; forget him in his threats, which stick in their soules after some Sermon: forget him in his judgements, which have taken hold of some of their companions; they drinke to the end they may drowne conscience, and put off all [Page 13] thoughts of death and Hell; and to hearten and harden themselves against all the messages of God, and threats of thr Law. Whereas if they had wit, and were not past grace; they would both invite, and welcome this Angell or Messenger of the Lord, so soone as the waters be troubled. But many a time is pooreChrist (offering to be new borne in thee) thrust into the stable, while lewd companions, by their drinking, musick, and jests take up all the best roomes in the Inne of thine heart; which yet are butmiserable comforters, Physitians of no value: Yea let ten consorts of musick be added, all shall not drowne the clamorous cries of conscience: nor can the whole world afford an expurgation of this melancholy. Yea I'le appeal from your selves in drink, to your selves in your sober fits; whether it fares not with you, as it did with Menippus; who went downe into Hell to seeke content; for what is this other in mitigating the pangs of conscience, then as a saddle of gold to a gauled horse? or a draught of poison to quench a mans thirst?
Alas, they which strive to cure their present misery (in this case) with present mirth; have not their misery so much taken away, as changed; and of temporall made eternall. Thou hast taken thy pleasure (saith Abraham to that bellygod frying in Hell flames) therefore art thou now tormented, Luke 16.25. Little do drunkards consider, that the Devill is a fisher, sinne his hooke, pleasure his bait, fooles his fish; or the danger they are in, even making a recreation of misery, sporting themselves in their sins, round about the pits brinke without fear: when as they are every houre ready to tople into hel, that bottomless gulfe of easeless, and everlasting flames. They spend their dayes in mirth, saith Job, and suddenly they goe downe into hell, Job 21.13. Indeed, your charmes may with their pleasantness, bring conscience into some short slumbers: but it waketh eftsoons, and in spight of all your spells rageth as before. Yea, if but sickness come, these carnall delights will runne from you afrighted, like Rats from an house on fire. Pleasure like Orpah, kisses, but parts: onely griefe like Ruth, weeps and tarryes with you. No joy will downe, till there be hope of a pardon, as it fares with condemned persons.
So that no hand can heale you, but the very same which wounded you; the wounds of the minde can onely be cured by the word of God: which teacheth what is to be said, what to be knowne, what to be beleeved, what to be avoided, and what not.
Thus in stead of repenting, and labouring in a lawfull calling: which (saith Fulgentius) is the onely cure of melancholy, and destruction of all vices: they adde sinne to sinne, leaving Gods remedies, to seeke remedy of the Devill; whose office is not to quench fire, but to kindle it; even the fire of lust, with the fire of drunkenness here; and with those two, the fire of hell hereafter. But
§ 15. Secondly, to this may be added the Drunkards idlenesse as another cause; yea, idleness is the cause both of drunkenness, melancholy, and all the residue of evils which accompany the same. For as idlenesse is the Devils [Page 14] only opportunity: so it is the most corrupting flye that can blow in any humane mind: we learne to do ill, by doing what is next it, nothing: an idle person is good for nothing, but to propagate sinne; as ground unoccupied produces nothing but noisome, and unprofitable things. The soule is like a River, that is alwayes in progression: the heart like a Wherry, either goes forward or backward. If the minde be not busied with good thoughts, it will fill with evill cogitations: the death of the one, is but the birth of the other.
Now drunkards generally, either do nothing, or that which is worse then nothing; all the drunkards labour, is to satisfie his lusts, and all his life nought else but a vicissitude of devouring, and venting: as how many of them make it their whole trade and imployment to keep company, to go from their beds to the Tap-house, (for the drunkard thinks no wine good, that is brought over two thresholds) from the Tap-house to the Play-house, where they make a match for the Brothel-house, and from thence backe to the Taverne, and so to bed againe. Or else they spend the whole day, yea, every day in howsing, and bowling, and takingTobacco: for they onely sit to eat, and drinke, lye downe to sleep, and rise up to play: this is all their exercise, herein lyes all their worth; and no marvaile, for if the world be a mans God, pleasure must needs be his Religion. The companykeeper is the barrenest piece of earth in all the Orbe: the Common-wealth hath no more use of him, then Jerchoam had of his withered hand. He is like the dumbe Jacke in a Virginall; for he hath not so much as a voice in the commonwealth.
What is recorded of Margites, namely that he never plowed nor digged, nor did any thing all his life long, that might tend to any good: is truly verified in him, he is not more nimble tongued, then lasie handed, as Julian confest of himselfe. Drunkards are like so many Gnats, for as Gnats do nothing but play up and downe in the warme Sunne and sing; and when they have done sit downe and sting the next hand or face they can seize upon: so drunkards miserably spend their good houres in wicked, or unprofitable pastime; sit downe and backbite their neighbours. And so much of the second cause.
§ 16. Thirdly, sottish feare, and base cowardlinesse is another maine cause; men dare not forsooth, refuse to go to the Taverne, when the motion is made, (and they seldome meet one another, but they make the motion) nor refuse when they come there, to do as the rest; that is, to drinke drunke, be it to the wounding of conscience, hazard of health, life, soule, &c. for feare of seeming singular. Yea he shall be scofft at, and called Roundhead, or Puritane, if he will not revell it with [Page 15] them in a shoarlesse excesse, and the coward had rather goe to hell, then be so reputed; so that not God, not their consciences come into any regard with them; but they shall bee mocked, the case of Zedekiah, Jer. 38.19. of Saul, who stood more upon the praise of men, then the favour of God, 1Sam. 15.30. and of Herod, when he cut off John Baptists head; for he did it full sore against his will, and onely to answer the expectation of the standers by, Mat. 14.8, 9. Whence we may gather, that too much modesty, and want of courage to deny the requests of a seeming friend, hath lost millions of soules; that this is one notable meanes to fill hell, loathness to displease. And certainely there is something in it, that the fearefull are placed by the holy Ghost, in the forefront of that damned crue; who shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, Rev. 21.8. they are ashamed of Christ, and of holiness before men on earth; therefore Christ will be ashamed of them, and not owne them before his Father, and his holy Angels in heaven. And indeed it is a damnable plausibility, so to regard the vaine approbation, or censure of the beholders: as in the meane time to neglect the allowance or judgement of God. A good heart will rather fall out with all the world, then with his maker, then with his conscience. Nor is hee more wicked then foolish, that will gaine the worlds favour, and lose Gods; escape derision, to meet with confusion.
§ 17. Againe, other reasons and causes there bee of it (though indeed there is no reason in it) which I must be forced to passe over with onely naming them, as first, pride, or reputation of good fellowship is one speciall cause; covetousnesse another; evill company a third, &c. for they will by no meanes grant, that they drinke for the love of drinke. No, will these swilbowles say, yea sweare that is the basest thing in the world, they are Epicures indeed that will do so; though they love it (as they should do God) above all, abovehealth, wealth, credit, child, wife, life, heaven, salvation, all: calling for it, as the Pope once for his dish; even in despight of heaven. For is not their gullet, their God? do they not sacrifice more to their God Belly, then those Babylonians did to their God Bel? Alas, they no more care for wine, then Esau did for his pottage, for which he sold his birthright: then Lysimachus did, who made away a whole Kingdome for drinke: then Philoxenus, and Melanthius did, who, that the drinke might yeeld them the more pleasure in going downe to their stomachs, wish't the one a Swans throat, the other a Cranes neck. For let them say or sweare what they will, i'le beleeve the Prophet Esay, who makes us privy to their heart and thoughts, Esay 56.12. where they confesse as much; and that other scripture 1 Sam. 1.16. & 2.12. where Drunkards are called the sonnes of Beliall, that is, all belly, and for the belly.
Yea let some good fellow or other tell me, whether it would not make his teeth water, and his guts grumble; yea whether in envy he would not feed upon his owne heart to see his companions drinke their healths round, while he sate by only to see and heare them? And if so, confesse that you drink not to please others, but your selves; (as Canus played upon his harp) not for your friends sake, but for the drinkes sake; that you drinke not out of need, but lust; not for health, but for delight.
§ 18. But to goe on, (for I may seeme to have left them) what hath been spoken proves them much worse then beasts: but this is a small evill with them; this is but to worke out their owne damnations: their chiefe care, industry, and delight is to infect others: the serpents speciall venome, [Page 16] wherewith these his elves be intoxicated, is, to make others more beasts then themselves. Yea Drunkards being the Devils deputies, to turn others into beasts, will make themselves Devils. Wherein they have a notable dexterity, making the Alehouse, or Taverne, their study; their circle the Pot, themselves the conjurers, mens soules the hire, reputation of good fellowship the charme, the characters healths, the Goblin raised, is the spirit of the buttery; and to drinke God out of their bearts, health out of their bodies, wit out of their heads, strength out of their joints, all the money out of their purses, all the drinke out of the Brewers barrels, wife and children out of doors, the land out of quiet, plenty out of the Kingdome, is all their businesse.
These Agents for the Devill, Drunkards, practice nothing but the art of d bauching men; for they will take no paines, unlesse the Devill sets them on worke: but being set like beasts to draw in the Devils Teeme; they will l ad captive unstable soules to sin, with cords of vanity, as it were with a Cart rep , Esay 5.18. For to sinne, these pernicious seducers, Devils in the shape of men, are no niggards of their paines. As ô how much is hell beholding to them for as the Pharisees would take great paines, compasse Sea and Land, to make one the childe of Hell, like themselves: so what will not some Drunkards do, or spend; to make a sober man a Drunkard, or to drink another drunkard under the table?
§ 19. Now for the effecting of this, what comparable to drinking of Lealths? which Antisthenes cals the onely occasion, and meanes of surfeiting, and disorder. Another very fitly, the palley or shooinghorne to all drunkennesse and excess. For their drinking and beginning of healths is purposely, and serves to no other end, but to draw men on to drinke more liberally, then else they would or should do.
As lee a sober, and religious man fall into their company; as a purse of mony may fall into a stinking privy: O how they will conspire to provoke his unwilling appetite, with drunken healths! and if they can (like the Baby Jewish harlot) make him taste poison in a golden cup: O then they will sing, and rejoice as in the division of a spoile! and brag that they have drenched sobriety, and blinded the light, and ever after be a snussing of this Taper, Psal. 13.4. and the like to every one they light upon, which is a most wofull glory: yea, how will they winde men in, by drinking first a health to such a man, then to such a woman my mistris, then to every ones mistris, then to such a great person; naming someLord or Lady, or near friend; their Magistrates, their Captaines, Commanders, Parents, Kindreds, orCompanions health; and that not seldome upon their knees: so making Gods of others, Beasts of themselves. Or rather doing homage to Satan, for healthdrinking upon their knees was first invented, and used as the Devils drinkeoffering; or as a part of that honour, and adoration which the Pagan Idolaters, sorcerers, and witches, consecrated, and gave to Beelzeb b the Prince of Devils, and those other Devill-gods which they used to worship: as Basil and Augustine affirme: so that it's most rancke, and devillish Idolatry.[Page 17]
And last of all, they will drinke the Kings or the Queenes health: as taking it for granted, that none dare refuse to pledge their healths, be they willing or unwilling, able or mable; and by this meanes they will winde men in to drinke, even till their braines, their wits, their tongues, their eyes, their feet, their senses, and all their members faile them. For commonly when these friends fall a drinking of healths; it is as enemies fall to fighting with weapons, to shew their valour, and to get the mastery; for hee is of most reputation with them, that is able to drinke most; and hee gets the greatest honour, that can drinke the rest off their legs. Yea, if they but meet with a man that can gulpe downe wine through the channell of his throat without interspiration betweene gulpes, (as the Crocodile eats, without moving of her nether jaw) they thinke he deserves some great preferment. As Tiberius the Emperour preferred many to honors in his time, because they were famous whoremasters, and sturdy drinkers. Yea if they might have their wils, none should refuse to be drunke unpunished; or be drunke unawarded at the common charge. Yea, they not onely thinke excessive drinking worthy all honour during life; but they looke their associates should not cease to honour them being dead; by mentioning their rare exploits herein.
§ 20. But O you sottish sensualists! how hath the Devill bewitched you, to magnifie, honour, and applaud all that are enthralled to this worse then swinish swilling? and on the otherside, to vilisie, rep oach and undervalue, all that hate and loath it in their judgements; or else renownce it in their practice? Is it possible that the reasonable soule of man (not professedly barbarous) should be capable of such a monster? certainly if I had not known the truth and probate of it by ocular and experimental demonstration from day to day; I could hardly bring my understanding to believe, that men, that Christians should be of such a reprobate judgement, as to affect, admire, adore &c. so foule, sobase, so beastly, so unamiable, so unfruitfull,unprofitable, unpleasant, unnaturall a vice as this is in most mens judgements, and experience. Nay I cannot beleeve what I have both seene, and lieard in this case for it is not possible for the most corrupted heart, to thinke that any should be honoured for villany, and for honesty to be contemned. But rather that every drunkard in his more serious cogitations, thinkes of his fellow dying in this sinne without repentance, a fit Saint to be canonized for the Devill. For not seldome are wicked mens judgements forced to yeeld unto that truth, against which their affections maintaine a rebellion.
But it is admirable to thinke, and incredible to beleeve, how the Devill blindes them in this particular; which makes them that they care not what they spend, nor how much they drinke for popular applause, and to have others commend them for joviall; to be reputed generous, and brave blades. For opinion is all they stand upon, and that from men more gallant then wise, that have more heart then braine; yea more lust, pride, and ignorance then either. The same and reputation of good fellowship with them; is more sweet then life, then salvation; for they had rather go to hell, then [Page 18] be counted Puritanes for shaking hands with their drunken associates. So p oud are they of basenesse, yea of shame; for let one commend the drunkard for a notable good fellow; another more wise, will reply, the better the worse.
And no lesse sottish is their opinion of victory: when even in conquering they are most overcome; for whilest they triumph in a drunken victory, or conquest over their friends; Satan gets the victory over them. In excessive drinking they have overcome all their companions: this they see and boast of; but they see not how they are overcome, shamefully foiled, and utterly overthrowne by the Devill their chiefe enemy; under whose lash they are like to be everlastingly. Besides, what office so base? the hangmans is bad enough; but to be a Tempter, todestroy souls, to weare the livery of Satan, to be a pensioner of el, at the command of that malignant and degenerous spirit, this is the most ignominious, and dishonourable name and shame, that can be. To be the angmans servant is an honour to it: for to seduce, and draw others to destruction, is the onely proper part of a Fiend or Devill.
§ 21. I grant the Devill so blindes, and bewitches them, that they think the reputation of good fellowship the onely name, and fame, and themselves the onely men alive; brave, generous, free, and bountifull blades: and all others but base, and covetous hoggrubbers. But all that are wise, or sober winded, account them the very scum of the nation; and good for nought but to stand in the midst of a breach, when the Ordinance play, and bullets fly thicke about their cares. And certainely there is nothing in the world more pitifull; an Ape carrier is honourable compared with a Drunkard: and hear but their wives speake, you will grant that his of the two is farre more happy in her choise.
Yea, Drunkards are so unworthy the meanest repute, that by the law, they ought to be stoned to death, Deut. 21.20, 21. and by the Gospell, to bee spurned or spued out of other mens company; I meane separated from all Christian society, and like dirt throwne out of the Church into the street, by excommunication, as is commanded, 1 Cor. 5.11. And untill that rule be observed, we shall have but a sorry reformation. For are they not as excrements and had humors in mans body; which is never at ease till it be thereof disburdened? as Augustine speakes do they not infect all that converse with them? Is not the Gospel and the name of God blasphemed among the Gentiles? and an evill scandall raised upon the whole Church through their superlative wickednesse? Rom. 2.24. does not their unchristianlike behaviour cause the very Turkes even to detest the true religion, and protest against their owne conversion? thinking it impossible that he should be a good God, who hath such evill sonnes.
And sure I am, that in thePrimitive times, the Church would have denied her blessing to such sonnes of Belial as these are, who make a trade of sinne; as though there were no God to judge, nor hell to punish, nor heaven to reward; and live as if they had no soules to save. Such as have shaken [Page 19] out of their hearts the feare of Ged, the shame of the world, the love of heaven, and the dread of hel; not caring what is thought, or spoken of them here; or what becomes of them hereafter. Yea such amonstrous menstruous brood, that (like a certaine mountaine in Arabia) breed, and bring forth nothing but monsters; whose deeds are too foule for my words to expresse; being such as ought not to bee once named amongst Christians, Ephesians 5.3, 4.
Now the good husbandman weeds his field of burtfull plants; that they may not spoile the good corne; and when fire hath taken a house, we use to pull it downe, lest it should fire also the neighbours houses: Yea the good Chirurgeon cuts off a rotten member betimes, that the sound may not be endangered.
§ 22. And thus I have made it good, that Drunkards drinke not for strength, but lust, and pride; to shew how full of Satan they be, and how neare to Swine. And that their chiefe delight, is to make men drinke these healths till they vomit up their shame againe like a filthy dog, or lye wallowing in their beastliness like a brutish swine, and make it their onely glory; which is the most sad, and wofull spectacle to a rectified understanding, that can be. Yea they will brag of the conquest, when with the weapons of full charged cups, they have overcome the rest: which is the basest office, and lamentablest overthrow to themselves that can possibly be imagined. For what a barbarous, graceless, and unchristianlike practice is this? to take pleasure in making others drunke, as if it were their glory and pastime to see God dishonoured, his spirit grieved, his name blasphemed, his creatures abused, themselves and their friends soules damned. But surely to glory in giving weake braines a drench, to see them wallow in their filthinesse, i but to brag how far they are become the Devils children. Yea, such men clime the highest step of the ladder of wickedness; thinking their owne fin will not press them deep enough into hell, except they also load themselve with other mens; for this is no other then the setting a mans own house fire, it burnes many of his neighbours, and he shall answer for all the ruines.
§ 23. But see their cunning, and industry in tempting to sin, and drawing to perdition. A drunkard (as if his brains were fired with all the plots, projects, and cunning stratagems that hel can yeeld) is as rarely gifted in drawing to sin, as the Devil himself; and is become the child of hel by as proper a right: so that if Satan would change his office, or were to surrender his place to any man alive, it should be to some good fellow or other; who hath learned to handle a man so sweetly, that one would think it a pleasure to be seduced. For to take away all suspition, they will so mollifie the stifness of a mans prejudice, so temper and fit him to their owne mould; that once to doith the would require the spirit of discerning. As how many are there that hate their other enemies, yea and their friends too; and yet embrace this enemy, because he kisseth when he betrayeth? As what fence for the Piston that is charged with the Bulle of friendship? Hilary compares it to a Razor [Page 20] in the hand of a counterfeit Barber. And indeed he so confirmeth the profession of his love, with vowes, protestations, and promises, (as a large complement for the most part ushers in a close craft) that you would thinke Jonathans love to David, was nothing in comparison (as no faces looke lovelier then the painred) but accept of gaine from him, and you are lost for ever. For with Sisera, you can no sooner taste of this Jaels milke, but you shall feel a naile in your Temples. So that the very wickedness of one which feareth God, is better then the good intreaty of a Drunkard. His proffers are like the Fowlers shrape, when he casts meat to Birds: which is not out of charity to relieve, but out of treachery to ensnare them.
Or like Traps we set for vermine; which seem charitable when they intend to kill. They lay wait, saith Jeremy, as he that setteth snares; and make a pit to catch men, Jer. 5.26. and thou mayest answer these cursed tempters which delight in the murther of soules, as the woman of Endor did Saul, wherefore seekest thou to take me in a snare, to cause me to dye? 1 Sam. 28.9. Or as a Godly woman (spoken of by Ambrose) did one that sollicited her to incontinency, professing how infinitely he loved her: who answered him, If you love me so well as you profess, or seem to do, hold your finger in this flame untill the flesh be burnt off; and when he answered that was no part of love in her to require it: she replyed yes, if yours be love to cause both my body and soule to burne in hell fire for ever; which by consequence will follow if I yeeld to your request, and follow your counsel. And to speak rightly, this is the depth of a Drunkards love; and yet never such abject, and servile prostitutions of presentations: as life, soule, devotion, adoration, servant, stave &c. as there is among. Drunkards. Oh will one drunkard say, (yea sweare) to another, I love thee as well as my selfe, and therein speak truth: for what said Augustine to such an one? Thou lovest thy selfe so, as thou wilt destroy thy selfe; and thou wilt destroy him, whom thou lovest as thy selfe. To sum up all, in briefe, A drunkard for kindness is another Julian, who was often times b untifull, but how? he never did a man a good turne, but it was to dainne his soule. He is another Absalom, who made a feast for Amnen, whom he meant to kill.
§ 24. Which is the sole cause, that drunkards swarme so in every corner of the Land; as where shall a man come, and not finde one of these seducers? Yea whole herds of them? as were I injoined to take up a ragged Regiment, I should thinke it no hard taske, to muster up a thousand men, (admit but drunkards to be men) out of the very Suburbs, that in sheere drinke, spend all they can get, borrow, or imbezill. Indeed heretofore they were as are as Wolves, but now they are as common as Hogs. Heretofore it was the sinne of Tinkers, Hostlers, Beggers, &c. now of Farmers, Citizens, Esquires, Knights, &c. Heretofore wine was sold onely in Apothecaries shops, and drunke rather in time of sicknesse, then in health: now it's vented in Tavernes, as if it grew in the Thames. There was a street in Rome called Vicus obrius, Sober street; because there was never a drinking house in it. Finde uch a street in any City, or populous Towne in England, and some good man [Page 21] or other, will put it in the Chronicle. Yea woe is me! how is the world turned Beast? what bowsing, and quaffing, and whiffing, and healthing, is there on every bench? and what reeling, and staggering in our streets? what drinking by the yard, the dye, the dozen? what forcing of pledges? what quarrels for measure and forme? how is that become an excuse of villany, which any villany might rather excuse I was drunke? how hath this torrent, yea this deluge of excess in drinke, drowned the face of the earth, and risen many cubits above the highest Mountaines of Religion and good Lawes? Yea would to God I might not say (that which I feare, and shame, and grieve to say) that even some of them which square the Arke for others, inwardly drowne themselves, and discover their nakedness hereby. That other inundation scowred the world, this impures it: and what but a deluge of fire and brimstone, can wash it from so abominable filthiness?
O the drunkenness that is in one day in this Land! yea in this City! yea at some fair or market to be seen! for goe but to the Towns end where a Fair is kept; and there they lie as if some field had beene fought; here lyes one man, there another; yea alas for woe, a womannay aswine with a womans face. Or goe into the back lanes, and there you shall have them among Frogs and Toads, their fit matches. To be short, it is a disease whereof this Nation and Generation is sicke at the very heart; and which is worse, in all prebability this infectious vice of drunken goodfellowship is like to stick by this Nation: for so long as the mulutude of offenders, benums the sense of offending; a common blor is held no staine.
§ 25. Increase it may, as how can it other? when each Drunkard is like the bramble, Judg. 9.15. which first set it selfe on fire, and then fired all the wood. Or like one sicke of the Plague, who (as they say) is carryed with an itching desire to infect others that are cleere. Or like an house on fire in the midst of a City; which (if the winde blowes vehemently) stayeth not in the burning of an house or two, but sets on fire all adjoining: neither doth it cease there, but every one which it hath set on fire kindles as many more, and so one another til it may be half, or all the whole City be consumed. For this is the Drunkards case directly, who is the bane of many poore souls besides his owne. It is Basils observation, that one whore makes many fornicators: but experience shewes, that one drunkard makes ten times as many drunkards.
As what a multitude of drunkards, will one true drunkard make; especially if hee be well accomplished with ingenuity, and gifts of nature? As when Achitophels head stands upon Simon Magus his shoulders, there is a world of mischiefe towards. A will ent to do harm, and a wit able to prosecute it, like Cannon shot, makes a lane where it goes.
All which considered, vi . the number of seducers, together with their skill, will, and industry in searing: we may with reverence, and love, wonder at the mercy of God in our delivery. For as our Saviour saith, Blessed is the man that is not offended at their scoffes, Mat. 11.6. so blessed is the man, that is not taken with their wils. For herein alone consists the difference; He whom [Page 22]the Lord loves, shall be delivered from their meretricious allurements, Eccles. 2.26. and he whom the Lord abhors, shall fall into their snares, Prov. 22.14. And so much of the Drunkards subtilty in seducing.
§ 26. Now if they cannot allure and perswade men to pledge them in their wicked customs; and so worke their wils by subtilty and faire meanes; they will seeke to compell and enforce them to do as they do: that so they may have their company here in sin, and hereafter in torment. At least that they may discourage us in the way to heaven; floute us out of our faith; and draw us backe to the world: when they can no longer seduce us, they will envy, bate, censure, scoffe at, revile, rail on, nickname, slander falsly, accuse, curse, threaten, undermine, and combine together against us: Yea did not the Law manacle their hands, they would even strike, hurt, and slay us; in case we would not yet yeeld to associate them in their evill doings, nor conforme to their lewd and wicked customes; If we would not for company grievously sinne against God, wrong our owne bodies, destroy our soules, and wilfully leap into Hell fire with them. They would make us either bow, or breake; they would kill our bodies, if they could not corrupt our soules. If we would not part with our innocency, we should part with our lives: as it fared with those numberless Martyrs, whose soules 8. John saw under the Altar, Rev. 6. who were killed because they would not do and say at the rest; yea even for the word of God, and for the testimony which they maintained, ver. 9. And why fares it not so with us? why do not the same drunkards, vitious livers, and other enemies of holiness, which now envy, hate, censure, scoffe at, nickname, raile on, and slander us; even strike, maime, and kill us? but because their hands are tyed by the Law. Why are not our Sanctuaries turned into shambles, and our beds made to swimme with our bloods, in London (as it fares with them in Ireland, and in many parts of this kingdome) long before this? but that the God of Israel hath crossed the confederacy of Balak. It is no thankes to wicked men, that their wickedness doth not prosper: they have laid a world of plots, ever since there was a purpose of Reformation, to cut all the Roundheads throats, had not justice and an overruling providence prevented them. The world would soone be overrunne with evils, if men might be so devillish as they would. Alas if it were not for the Parliament and Army, (for all they are so hated, scorned, and contemned,) it would be otherwise then it is with the People of God; as the Word of God, and both former and late experience do witness. But of this, see more in the Drunkards Character: for I must bee briefe. I passe therefore from the drunkards qualities, carriage, and behaviour, with the method he useth in drinking, to the fruits and effects of their drunkennesse, which are many. I'le mention some only. And
§ 27. First, I will say open the Drunkards outward bodily deformities; which are sundry, and those odious: for commonly he hath (Vertumnuslike) a Brasill nose, a swolne and inflamed face; beset with goodly chowles and rubies, as if it were both roste and sodde; swimming, running, glaring, gogle eyes, bleered, rowling, and red; a mouth nasty, with offensive fumes, [Page 23] alwayes foaming or drivelling; a feaverish body, a sicke and giddy braine, a minde dispersed, a boyling stomach, rotten teeth, a stinking breath, a drumming eare, a palsied hand, gowty, staggering legs, that faine would goe, but cannot: a drawling, stammering; temulentive tongue, clam'd to the roofe and gums: In fine (not to speake of his odious gestures, loathsome nastinesse, or beastly behaviour; his belching, hiccocks, vomitings; his ridiculous pestures, and how easily he is knock'd downe, whose hamstrings Bacchus hath already cut in two: nor of the unmeasurable grosseness of such, whose only Element is Ale; especially your Alewives, who like the Germane Froes are all cheekes to the belly, and all belly to the knees; whose dugs and chinnes meet without any forcing of either: because you may dayly see such fustilugs walking in the streets, like so many Tunnes, each moving upon two pottle pots) His essentiall parts are so obscured; his sense so dulled, his eyes so dazelled, his face so distorted, his countenance so deformed, his joints so infeebled, and his whole body and minde so transformed; that he is become the childe of folly, the derision of the world, a laughing stock to fooles, a laothing stock to the godly, ridiculous to all. Yea questionlesse, had they a glass presented them, they could hardly be brought againe to love their owne faces. Much more should they read a true Character of their odious conditions; would they run besides their wits, if they had any to lose; or goe and dispatch themselves as Bepalus did upon view of Hipponax his letter. For (Thersiteslike) many are their bodily deformities; but farre more, and worse are those of their soules.
§ 28. Neither are his diseases and infirmities fewer then his deformities: for excessive and intemperate drinking, hath brought upon him a world of diseases and infirmities which shorten his life; as who can recount, or recite the crudities, rheumes, gowtes, dropsies, aches, imposthumes, apoplexies, inflammations, plurisies, consumptions, (for though he devoures much, yet he is the leaner every way) with the falling sicknesse, and innumerable other distempers hence ensuing; which drunkards better know by experience, then I how to reckon up?
To whom are pearled faces, palsies, headaches, but to Drunkards? what so much as swilling, blowes up the cheekes with wind; fils the nose and eyes with fire; loads the hands and legs with water; and in short plagues the whole man with the diseases of an Horse, the belly of a Cow, the head of an Asse, &c. almost turning him into a very walking dunghill? Beleeve a man in his owne art, the distempered body, the more it is filled, the more it is spilled, saith Hippocrates; and to it the Prophet sets his seal, Hosea 7.5. so that the Drunkard drawes death out of that which preserves other mens lives; and the reason is, the naturall, and vitall heat of men is hereby drowned, and extinguished before it be neere spent; like a candle cast into the water, before it be halfe burnt. Yea wine, and strong drinke hath drowned more men then the Sea hath devoured; and more dye of surfets then by the sword. Yea as drunkenness hath drowned more soules then all the sinnes of Sodomes so it hath drowned more bodies, then were drowned in the generall deluge [Page 24] of Noabs flood: But you have not heard all; for,
§ 29. Thirdly, as if the drunkard scorned to goe to his grave in peace, he strives to do execution upon himselfe: either by drinking untill his skin and guts cracke againe: As how many have dranke themselves dead? how many have even burst themselves with drinking, and so dyed? being taken away in Gods just wrath, &c. Or secondly, by a frequent exposing himselfe in the darke, to divers fearfull and lamentable accidents: whereby he oft breakes his limbes, or necke; drownes or burnes himselfe. Yea how oft have snakes beene knowne to creepe downe their throats into their bellies, as they lay asleep in the fields? And how should it be otherwise? for when he is drunk, he is like a running Coach without a Coachman to guide it, as Pittacus makes the comparison. Or thirdly, by running into quarress when hee is drunke; whereby he either murthers others, or is stabbed, and murthered by others. For while the wine workes, they resemble those fishes which love to be in violent streames, and flood gates; but do dye in still waters. As who will sooner kil and slay then Cowards, when once they are pot valiant? I deny not, but such a ones discourse may sometimes sound big, and yet mean nothing: Cowards being most forward both in giving charge with the tongue, and recoyling back with the foot. Yea you shal see a drunkard look like the foure windes in painting; as if he would blow away the enemy; and yet at the very first onset, suffer feare, and trembling to d ess themselves in his face apparently. And commonly where is least heart, there is most tongue: swelling words being like the report of great Ordnance; which doth only blaze, and cracke, and smoake, and stinke, and vanish.
But this holdes not alwayes, for sure I am, many do that in a Taverne, which they repent at Tiburne; and nothing more common then for drunkards to kisse when they meet, and kill when they part. For when they have lost the sterne of reason, it shall goe hard, but they will either give offence, or take it. A drunken man you know, will make a fray with his owne shadow; or suppose he but nods his head against some Post or Table, (for they will even fall asleepe as they sit) he is so stupefied, that in revenge he will strike his opposite for the wrong, and then call for drinke to make himselfe friends againe: which friendly cup, gives occasion of a second quarrell; for whether he laughes or chafes, he is alike apt to quarrell. Or let but a friend admonish him, hee were as good take a Beare by the tooth.
This sinne scorns reproofe, admonition to it were like goads to them that are mad already: or like powring oyle downe the chimney, which may set the house on fire, but never abate the heat; it may move them to choler, never to amendment. I am loath to trouble you with the multitude of examples which are recorded of those, that having made up the measure of their wickenesse; have Amnonlike dyed, and been slaine in Drinke, as it were with the weapon in their belly, being taken away in Gods just wrath: it faring with them as it did with that Pope, whom the Devill is said to have slaine in the very instant of his adultery, and carry him quicke to hell. And [Page 25] what can be more fearefull, then when their heads are merry, and their wits drowned with wine, to be suddenly stricken with death: as if the exccution were no lesse intended to the scule, then to the body? or what can be more just, then that they which in many years impunity, will finde no leasure of repentance, should at last receive a punishment, without possibility of repentance? But
§ 30. Fourthly, as drunkennesse is the cause of murther, so it is no lesse the cause of Adultery: You shall rarely (saith Augustine) see a man continent that is not abstinent. Yea (saith Ambrose) the first evill of drunkennesse, is danger of chastity; for Bacchus is but a pandar to Venus; as one Devill is ready to helpe another in mischiefe. He that tarrieth long at the wine, saith Solomon, his eyes shall looke upon strange women, and his heart shall speake lewd things. Prov. 23.33. And Saint Paul witnesseth that the fruits of gluttony and drunkennesse, is chambering and wantonnesse, Rom. 13.13. And the example of Lot, more then proves it, who being sober, abhorred all filthiness; but being drunke he was easily drawne to commit incest with his owne daughters; not once perceiving when he lay downe, or when he rose up. Gen. 19.32. to 36. Which being rightly considered, methinkes a man had need to bee drunke before hand, that shall admit of more wine then enough; that shall for one howers mad mirth, hazard a whole age of griefe and shame; together with his displeasure, that is able to destroy both body and soul in hell.
You know when Iron is hot, the Smith can fashion it to his pleasure; and wine tempers the heart like wax for the Devils impression. When a man is drunk, Satan may stampe in his heart the foulest sin; but lust will admit no deniall. That heat which is taken at the Tavern must be allayed at the Brothel house. And the blood which is fired with Bacchus, must be cooled with Venus. Yea the Devil should forget both his office, and malice, if he did not play the Pandar to concupiscence this way: for idlenesse makes way for loose company, loose company makes way for wine, wine makes way for lust, and lust worke for the Devill: Venus comes out of the froth of this Sea. Nor d chastity ever sleep in a Drunkards bed.
The Drunkard is like a Salamander stone, which fires at the sight of every flame. Yea if he but see a whore, and she him; like the Weesle, and the Basiliske, they poison each o her with their sight, Prev. 7. Wine and high dyet, is adulteries nurse: They rose up in the morning like fed orses (saith the Prophet) and what followes? Every man neighed after his neighbours wise; Jer. 5.8. which is more then true with our Drunkards; who like the Horse & Mule, that have no understanding, no shame, no conscience, &c. especially your brazen brained, and flinty foreheaded clownes; can no sooner spye a woman or maid even in the open streets, but they will fall to embracing and tempting her with ribauldry, scurrility, and turning every word she speakes, to some lascivious and obscene sense; whereof they are not a little proud; though it would make a wise and modest man even spue to heare them.
Now what hath beene said of Murther and Adultery, may also be averred [Page 26] of every other sinne that can be named: for what sinne was there ever committed, which wine hath not proved the occasion of? as our reverend Judges, in their severall circuits, finde by continued experience? but I must passe over many things
§ 31. Fiftly, as the drunkard deformes his body, impaires his health, shortens his life, &c. by his excessive drinking: so he consumes his estate, and brings himselfe to poverty, and want, as Solomon shewes, Prov. 23.21. And I could largely demonstrate how they consume their wealth at the wine, even untill they have swallowed downe their whole estates: and then rather then not satisfie their guts, that they will spend in sheere drinke, all the cloathes on their beds and backs. Yea they will drinke the very blood of their wives and children; who are not onely impoverished, but even parched with famine, and burnt up with thirst, to satisfie his throat; in which hee is worse then an Infidell, 1 Tim. 5.8. But I will pass this, as of least consequence. Only observe how he is paid in his owne coine. The Drunkard having spent all in superfluities, in the end he wants necessaries; and because in his youth he will drinke nothing but wine, in his old age he is constrained to drinke water. Yea how oft are Vermine seene to suck his bloud, as fast as he doth that of the grape and mauli? And lastly, how he throwes his house so long out at windowes, that at last his house throwes him out at doores: and when all is gone, glad would he be to be a Swineherd like the prodigall sonne: but knowing himselfe unworthy of any mans entertainment, he growes weary of his life, and is ready to make himselfe away; like Peter the Cardinall, base son to Sixtus the fourth, that monstrous Epicure, the shame of the later times; or like Apicius, the shame of the ancient age wherein he lived. Neither stayes he here, for the tiplers progresse is commonly from luxury to beggery; from beggery to theevery; from the Taverne to Tiburne; from the Alehouse to the Gallows.
§ 32. Againe, sixtly, another effect of drunkenness is, it not onely causeth a world of vaine babling, scurilous jesting, wicked talking, impious swearing, &c. as I have already shewen; but over and above, it mightily decayes the braine; for if it findes them not fooles, it makes them fooles that follow it. Indeed for the most part it findes men fooles; for excess is a true argument of folly; as who more foolish then those prophane Esaus, that will sell their birthright, reason, and the blessing of grace here, and glory hereafter, for a messe of pottage; a little sensuall delight: and with Adam part with their salvations for an Apple? What greater folly, and madness, saith Gregory, then for a little tickling of the palat, a kinde of running banquet: to lose an eternall Kingdome, and expose ones selfe to a devouring fire, an everlasting burning? Esay 33.14. Surely in this case, if a man were not either foolish, or drunke before hand, he could never yeeld to be made drunke. But secondly, if they have wit, and other good naturall parts before, yet this vice makes them become fooles. Yea, it is the funerall of all a mans good parts. For drunkenness banisheth wit; reason is so clowded with those fogs, and mists, which ascend up out of the kitchen of the stomach [Page 27] to the braine, that their wits runne a woolgathering, as the Proverb is.
A full belly makes an empty braine, when a masse of moisture (like the first Chaos) is in the stomach; all the faculties of the soule are void, and without forme; and darkness is upon the face of it; untill there be another Fiat even a voice from heaven commanding a new light.
Yea drunkenness besots the strongest braine, and bestiates even the bravest spirits: when the Grecians that sage Nation, fell to this vice, they mightily decayed in braine. And take this for a rule, while Bacchus is a mans chiefe God, Apollo will never keepe him company. I name not these counterfeit deities to grace, but rather to disgrace them.
Neither are men rob'd by it of their naturall parts onely, but drunkenness darkens the light both of nature, and grace; and so yeelds men over unto Satan, to be led by him, as it were blindfold into all manner of sinne, and wickedness. And which is most remarkeable, this may seeme to bee the drunkards aime: for being at it, he will never give over drinking, till hee hath laid Reason his keeper to sleep, and blown out that little light which is left in him, and desperately drowned the voice, and cry of Conscience.
§ 33. And the like touching Memory; for the abundance of wine hath drowned and mudded that noble Recorder. The drunkard first speakes hee knowes not what; nor after can he remember what that was he spake. A Drunkards minde, and stomach are alike: neither can retaine what they receive; deep drinkers have shallow me mories. Yea drunkenness takes from men wit, memory, and all other their good parts: as how many of these quagmirists, have lost their souls sight by overmuch drinking; as Dionysius did his bodily? How many through a long custome in this vice, are growne sottish, and stupid, as if their braines were buried in tar? I speake not of the present time onely, when they are in drinke; for then I should tell you of one drunkard, that sought all the Innes in the Towne for his ho se, when indeed he came thither on foot: of another that having laid his brecches under his bed, for the more safety of his purse; challenged the Chamberlaine that he had stolne them away: of a third, that stuft his pillow (a brass pot) with straw to make it soft: of a fourth, that fell to cussing of a post, for not giving him the wall; and being told that it was a post, made reply, he might have blowne his horne then. I might also tell you, how a Taverne was by the fancy and imagination of a drunken crue, turned into a Galley: who having a tempest in their heads, caused by a Sea of drinke within; verily thought this Taphouse on land, a Pinnace at Sea; and the present storme so vehement, that they unloaded the Ship, throwing the goods out at window, instead of overboard; calling the Constable Neptune, and the Officers Tritons: Whereupon some got under the Table, as if they lay under Hatches, another holding a great pot for the Mast; all crying out that so many brave gentlemen should be cast away, as Atheneus relates; with abundance of the like, did they not tend rather to laughter, then godly edifying: but I speak of habituated drunkards, when they are at the best.[Page 28]
I confess, it is the better for them that they are fools, the case being rightly considered; for what Owen speaks in the Epigram, may be applyed to sundry Drunkards;Good wine they say makes vinegar most tart:Thou the more witty, the more wicked art.
Yea had they been borne meere naturals, they had either been in no fault, or in a great deale lesse fault then they are. And so you see that drunkards are strangely stupendious, and forgetfull; that drunkenness deprives men both of wit and memory: and yet they madly pursue this vice, as the kindler of them. But no wonder, when the forbidden Tree, which promised our first Parents knowledge, tooke their knowledge from them; the same Devil having a hand in both.
§ 34. Thus having got through the principall stages of the drunkards progress; before we goe any further, let us looke backe upon what we have past. As how they imitate their Father the Devill, in tempting, and in forcing to sinne, and in drawing to perdition: after a review taken, let any stander by say, whether Satan be so much beholding to any men alive, as to them; whether he hath any servants, that do him such faithfull service; any Factors that make him a better returne of soules; any Generals, that subdue so many souldiers to him; any advocates, that pleade so hard for him, as the true drunkard. I presume you cannot nominate one: I confess a beautifull whorish woman, (another of the Devils limetwigs) who hath a flattering tongue, Prov. 6.24. smooth and enticing words, Prov. 7.5. lips which drop like an hony comb; and a mouth more soft then oyle, Prov. 5.3. does the Devill singular service in the business of tempting, for infinite are the soules which these artificiall Paradises have beguiled; for as through an Hell upon Earth, God brings many to Heaven; so through an Heaven upon Earth many bring themselves to Hell. And she hath a priviledg above other tempters; for Cockatricelike, she killeth with her very sight: yea she is able to take a man with her very eyelids, Prov. 6.25. which makes the Wise man say, that many have perished by the beauty of women, Eccles. 9.8. Yet nevertheless, let her bid welcome to all commers; so that any base fellow may ride her post to the Devill, with a golden bit: thee shall never be able to fill hell, (her body will not hold out) nor helpe to people that infernall Kingdome, as some Drunkards do, that are gifted thereafter.
The which considered, together with his other sinnes of idlenesse, epicurisme, adultery , murther, his vaine babling, scurrilous jesting, wicked talking, impious swearing, atheisme, and the like: (for he hath treble heads to Ce berus, that ugly porter o Hell) proves him the King or chiese of sinners; as the Basilisk is called the King of Serpents. And not only shewes them to be children of the Devill, as all unregenerate men are; but to be really metamorphosed into Devils: as Lots wife was really metamorphosed into a Pillar of Salt, and Ulysses companions into hogs and dogs; and Cadmus with his wife into Serpents, as Poets faine. Yea certainely, if the Devill would change his properties, he would put himselfe into the person, and appropriate to himselfe [Page 29] the very qualities of some drunken good fellow: as what thinke you? Is not drunkenness the root of all evill, and therot of all good? yea is not this a sinne, which turnes a man wholly into sinne? and as Ahab sold himselfe to worke wickednesse, so doth not the drunkard wholly dedicate, resigne, surrender, and give himselfe up to serve sinne, and Satan? his whole imployment is onely to drinke, drab, quarrell, sweare, scoffe, slander, and seduce, as if to sinne were his trade, and he could do nothing else. Like the Devill who was a sinner from the beginning, a sinner to the end. Yea he is sinne in the abstract, as Augustine speakes. Neither is that man of sinne (2 Thess 2.3.) fuller of sinne then such an one; for if these be their words and actions, what think you are the secrets of their hearts? certainely if all their thoughts did but breake forth into action, they would not come far short of the Devils themselves. Yea if halfe so much were knowne to man, as God knowes of them: how would all drunkards hang downe their heads with shame? as what strange monsters would appeare? what ugly, odious, hideous fiends would represent themselves? O what swarmes, what litters, what legions of noysome lusts are couched in the stinking sty of a drunkards heart! which God onely hath reserved as a prerogative royall to him selfe, exactly to search to the bottome, Jer. 17.9, 10.
You may marvaile at this which hath beene discovered, but you would marvaile much more if all should be told. As I could carry you a great way farther, and yet leave more of him before then behinde. For hee is like some putrid Grave, the deeper you dig, the fuller you shall finde him both of stench and horror. But I am injoined to contract him in a sheet or two of paper, lest it should cause many to make an end before they begin; as not seldome doth a little more writ, cause a great deale less to be read. Besides, he who hath a long journey to goe, and but a little time allowed him, must make but short baits by the way, and cannot stand to take e ery acquaintance he meets by the hand. And they that are to paint or print a pitcht field, within the compass of a small table; can make but few souldiers whole, and compleat; but are faine to set down for the most, their heads only, or their helmets.
§ 35. Wherefore, as drunkards have seen their sinne laid open; so let them now hearken to their punishment: for both by Gods, and mans Law; next after indictment and conviction, followes sentence; and after sentence is past comes execution; if a reprieve or pardon be not sued out in the interim.
If there be any of these Antipodes to God and his kingdome, who like Trees have rooted both head and heart into the earth, and set heaven at their heeles: That have in this Treatise as in a picture taken a full view of his owne horrid and detestable condition; and with Bupalus the Painter read the lively character of his odious, and deformed demeanour; and after he hath seene as in a cleare Glasse, the ugly face of his foule heart, with those spots and wrincles, which otherwise he could not have espyed, or confest in himselfe: and further seene, how miserably Satan hath deluded him, [Page 30] and shal notwithstanding persever in this his brutish sensuality; and resolve against yeelding; and prefer the humouring of his soul, before the saving of it; and shall thinke it a disparagement to repent him of his errors: and would rather obstinately continue in them, then disclaime them; so shutting his eyes that he may not see, and stopping his eares that e may not heare, and hardning his heart that he may not consider; presumptuously as Pharaoh did, malitiously as Cain did, desperately as Ahab did, and blasphemously as Julian did, Iet him know that he shall surely perish. The reason of it is taken out of the Proverbs; an Arrow drawne out of Solomons sententious Quiver. Read the words and tremble; A man that hardeneth his neck when he is rebuked, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy, Prov. 29.1. Yea the Lord himselfe saith, Prov. 1.24, 25, 26, &c. Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out mine hand, and yee would not regard, but despised all my counsell: I will also laugh at your destruction, and mocke when your feare cometh.
And of this we have sundry instances; The sonnes of Ely would not hearken unto, nor obey the voyce of their Father, why? because (saith the Text) the Lord was determined to destroy them, 1 Sam. 2.25. Their hearts must be hardened, that they may be destroyed; I know (saith the Prophet to Amaziah) that God hath determined to destroy thee, because thou host done this, and host not obeyed my counsell, 2 Chron. 25.16, 20.
O remember, I beseech you! that there is a day of account, a day of death, a day of judgement comming; wherein the Lord Jesus Christ shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty Angels in slaming fire, to render vengeance unto them which obey not his Gospell, and to punish them with everlasting perdition from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power, 2 Thess. 1.7, 8, 9. Jude 15. at which time thou shalt heare him pronounce this fearfull doome, Depart from meyee cursed, Mat. 25.41. which is an everlasting departure; not for a day, nor for yeares of dayes, nor for millions of yeares; but for eternity; and that from Christ, into those scorchingflames of fire and brimstone, which are prepared for the Devill and his Angels.
More particularly, consider how many woes the word of God pronounceth against drunkards. As woe to Drunkards (saith Esay)that are mighty to drinke wine; and unto them that are strong to poure in strong drink; that continue drinking untill the wine doth inflame them. Woe, saith Habakkuk, unto him that giveth his neighbour drink till he be drunken. Woe, saith Solomon, to them that tarry long at the wine, to them that goe and seeke mixt wine: Woe to his body, which is a temporall woe; woe to his soule, which is a spirituall woe; wee to both body and soule, which is an eternall woe. Howle ye drunkards, saith Joe ; weepe ye, saith S. James. Esay 5.22. Habakkuk 2.15. Joel 1.5. James 5.1, 5. Yea, which of Gods servants hath not a woe in his mouth, to throw at this sinne? and every title of this word shall be accomplished: God will one day hold the cup of vengeance to their lips, and bid them drink their fils. Yea as drunkards are Satans Eldest sonnes; so they shall have a double portion of vengeance. Whereas riot in the forenoone hath beene merry, in the afternoone drunke, at night gone to bed starke mad; in the morning of their [Page 31] resurrection, it shall rise sober into everlasting sorrow: they finde not the beginning and progress so sweet, as the farewell of it shall be bitter. For as sure as God is in heaven, if they forsake not their swilling (which they are no more able to do, then they are able to eat a Rock, the Devill hath so besotted them) they shall once pay deare for it, even in a bed of unquenchable flames.
I speak not of the many temporall judgements which God brings upon them in this life; though to mention them alone were omnisufficient, if they thirsted not after their owne ruine. As I could tell them from Levit. 26. and Deut. 28. that all curses threatned, all temporal plagues and judgements which befal men in this life, are inflicted upon them for sin, and disobedience. But I speake of those torments which are both intolerable, and interminable; which can neither bee indured, nor avoided when once entred into.
If I say you persevere in this your brutish sensuality, and wil needs Diveslike, drink here without thirst; you shall thirst hereafter without drinke. Yea though that fire be hot; the thirst great, and a drop of water bee but a little; yet in this hot fire, and great thirst, that little drop shall be denied you, Luk. 16. For know this, that without repentance Paul will be found a true Prophet; who saith that No drunkard shall ever inherit the Kingdome of Heaven, 1 Cor. 6.9, 10. And Esay no less, who saith that Hel enlargeth it selfe for drunkards, and openeth her mouth without measure; that all those may descend into it, who follow drunkennesse, and prefer the pleasing of their palats; before the saving of their soules, Esay 5.11, 14. As they make their belly their God, and their shame their glory; so damnation shall be their end. Phil. 3.19. Yea their end is a damnation without end; wickedness hath but a time, but the punishment of it is beyond all time.
Neither is the extremity of the pain, inferiour to the perpetuity of it; for the paines and suffering of the damned are ten thousand times more then can be imagined by any heart as deepe as the Sea; and can rather be indured then expressed. It is a death never to be painted to the life; no pen nor pensil, nor art, nor heart can comprehend it. Yea if all the Land were Paper, and all the water Inke; every Plant a Pen, and every other Creature a ready writer; yet they could not set down the least piece of the pains of Hell fire: for should we first burne off one hand, then another, after that each arme, and so all the parts of the body, it were intolerable; yet it is nothing to the burning of body and soule in Hell: should wee endure ten thousand yeares torments in hell, it were much; but nothing to eternity: should we suffer one paine, it were enough, but if we come there, our pains for number and kindes, shall be infinitely various, as our pleasures have beene here. Every sense, and member, every power and faculty, both of soule and body, shall have their severall objects of wretchedness; and that without intermission, or end, or ease, or patience to indure it.
O that I could give you but a glimps of it! that you did but see it, to the end you might never feel it; that so you might be won, if not out of faith, [Page 32] yet out of feare: for certainly this were the hopefullest meanes of prevention; for though divers Theeves have robbed Passengers within sight of the Gallowes: yet if a sinner could see but one glimps of Hell, or be suffered to looke one moment into that fiery lake, he would rather chuse to dye ten thousand deaths, then commit one sinne. And indeed therefore are we dissolute, because we do not think what a judgement there is after our dissolution, because we make it the least, and last thing we think on. Something you have heard of it, but alas I may as well with a Coale paint out the Sunne in his splendor; as with my pen, or tongue express the joyes of Heaven (which they willingly part withall) or those torments of Hell (which they strive to purchase:) for as one said, that nothing but the eloquence of Tully, could sufficiently set forth Tullies eloquence: so none can expresse those everlasting torments, but he that is from everlasting to everlasting. And should either man or Angell goe about the worke, when (with that Philosopher) he had taken a sevennights time to consider of it; he might aske a fortnight more, and at the fortnights end, a month more; and be at his wits end at the worlds end, before he could make a satisfying answer, other then his was, that the longer he thought of it, the more difficult hee found it. Alas the pain of the body, is but the body of paine; the anguish of the soule, is the soule of anguish.
But to be everlastingly in hel, to lye for ever in a bed of quenchless flames, is not all: for as thy sinnes have exceeded, so shall thy sufferings exceed. As thou hast had a double portion of sinne, to other men here, so thou shalt have a double portion of torment to them hereafter. The number and measure of Torments, shall be according to the multitude and magnitude of offences: mighty sinners shall be mightily punished. For God will reward every man according to his workes, Rev. 20.12, 13. and 22.12. As our workes are better or worse; so shall our joyes in heaven, our paines in hell be more or lesse. As every one hath beene more wicked, so he shall bee more wretched. Capernaum exceeding Sodome and Gomorrah in sin, shall feel also an excess of punishment. And the wilfull servant shall receive more stripes then the ignorant, Luke 12.47, 48. Matth. 10 15. Which being so, viz. that every man shall be punished according to merit; what will become of thee? surely thy sinnes are so prodigious, that they scorne any proportion, under a whole volume of plagues. If thou wilt see the particular circumstances, which greaten, aggravate, and adde weight to thy sinnes, and make them above measure sinfull; turne to pag. 465. in the Drunkards Character, and read to the 142 Section. Or in case thou objectest, that God is mercifull, and that the Theefe was heard by our Saviour at the last houre; read the answer to that Plea, from pag. 542. to the 154. Section, for I cannot stand upon them here.
Neither let drunkards ever hope to escape this punishment, except in due time they forsake this sinne; for if every transgression without repentance, deserves the wages of death eternall, as a just recompence of reward, Heb. 2.2. Rom. 6.23. how much more this accursed, and damnable sinne of [Page 33] drunkenness? which both causeth, and is attended upon, by almost all other sins, ashath beene proved.
§ 36. And yet if thou canst after all this, but truly repent, and lay hold upon Christ by a lively faith; which ever manifesteth it selfe by the fruits of a godly life and conversation: know withall that though thy sinnes have been never so many for multitude, never so great for magnitude; God is very ready to forgive them; and this I can assure thee of; yea I can shew thee thy pardon from the great King of Heaven for al that is past: the Tenure whereof is, Let the wick d forsake his wayes, and the unrighteous his own imaginati us, and turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will aboundantly pardon, Isa. 55.7. And that we should not doubt of this, he redoubles the promise, Ezek. 18. and confirmes the same with an oath, chap. 33.11. Yea sinnes upon repentance, are so remitted, as if they had never been ommitted;I have put away thy transgression as a cloud, and thy sinnes as a mist. Esay 44.22. and what by corruption hath been done, by repentance is undone, as aboundance of examples witness. He pardoned Davids adultery, Solomons Idolatry, Peters Apostasie; Paul did not onely deny Christ, but persecuted him in his members as thou dost; yet he obtained mercy upon his repentance. Yea amongst the worst of Gods enemies, some are singled out for mercy; witness Manasses, Mary Magdalen, the Theefe, &c. many of the Jewes did not onely deny Christ, the holy one and the just, but crucified him: yet were they pricked in heart at Peters Sermon, gladly received the word, and were baptized, Acts 2.41.
Yea I can shew thee this very case in a president, 1 Cor. 6.10, 11. where we read of certain Corinthians, that had been given to this sin of drunkennes: ho upon their repentance, were both washed, sanctified, and justified. And S. Ambrose tels of one, that being a spectacle of drunkenness; proved after his conversion, a patterne of sobriety. Yea know this, that Gods mercy is greater then thy sinne, what ever it be: thou canst not be so infinite in sinning, as he is infinite in pardoning if thou repent. Let us change our sinnes, and God will change his sentence. The seed of the Woman, is able to bruise this Serpents head. Wherefore if you preferre not hell to heaven; abandon this vice.
But withall know, that if it shall come to pass, that the drunkard (when he heareth the words of this curse, namely these threatnings before rehearsed) shall Pharaoh-like harden his heart, and bless himselfe in his wickedness, saying, I shall have peace, although I walke according to the stubbornnesse of mine owne eart; so adding drunkennesse to thirst: the Lord will not be mercifull to that man, ut then his wrath and jealousie shall smoak against him; and every curse that is ritten in his law shall light upon him; and the Lord shall put out his name from under heaven; as himselfe speakes Deut. 29.19, 20. which chapter, together with the former, I wish thee to read, if thou wilt know thy selfe, and foreknow thy judgment.
§ 37. But will some Titormus say, being it may be stronger to drinke, and aller to tiple, then Milo himselfe was to eate; who devoured a whole [Page 34] Oxe at a meale, as Poets pretend) I was never so gone yet, but I knew th way home, I could tell what I did, what I said, &c. Yea no man ever sa me so much as wheele in the streets; I am therefore no drunkard, neither d these threats appertaine to me.
To whom I answer; Perhaps thou art no drunkard in thine owne, or th worlds account; but in Gods account, (whose Law extends even to the heart and affections, Mat. 5.28.) he is one that is mighty to drink wine, and of strengt to pour down strong drink. Esay 5.22. He that goes often to the drinke, or tha tarriteth too long as it; Prov. 23.30. He that will be drawn to the Tavern or Alehouse by every idle solicitor, and there be detained whole houres i drinking against his stomach and constitution of body, against his judgement, the checkes of his owne conscience, the motions of Gods spirit, the earnes dehortation of his godly friends, and many woes to the contrary: to the spending of his mony, wasting of his pretious time, neglect of his calling, abusing the creatures, (which thousands better then he want) wounding of his good name, impairing of his health, prejudice of his peace, discredit of the Gospell, an professors ther of; the stumbling of weak ones, the incouraging of indifferent and unresolved ones; the forestaling, and hardning of his associates, and all other enemies who know, or heare of it. Briefly, he that drinkes more fo lust, or pride, or covetousnesse, or feare, or good fellowship, or to drive awa time, or to still conscience, then for thirst, is a drunkard in Solomons dialect hee is the party to whom those many Woes before rehearsed do belong. Fo drinke is not onely abused, when it turnes up a mans heeles, and makes th house turne round: but when it steales away the affections so farre, tha a man can neither buy, nor sell, nor meet any friend, or customer, bu straight to the Taverne, or Alehouse. Perhaps sixe times in a day, as is th common but base custome of most Tradesmen. And what ever they think if I have any skill in scripture, they are to bee ranked with drunkards. A for those that truely feare God, though they may use their Christian liberty, and sometimes drinke a little for delight; yet ordinarily they drinke a other creatures drinke, only to satisfie and quench their thirst. Nor can those formall and titular Christians deny, but in cases of this nature, things are rather measured by the intention, and affection of the doer, then by the issue and event. And why should not a man bee deemed a drunkard for his immoderate, and inordinate affection to drinke or drunken Company; as well as an adulterer for the like affection to his neighbours wife, Mat. 5.28? And so much of the reward and punishment of this sin.
§ 38. I should now proceed to the remedies, at least if there were hope of reclaiming them; but to speake ingenuously, I never intended it for their sakes; as considering that habituated drunkards, will be sure to turne their backs upon this bright shining truth, Jer. 38.15 Sore eyes cannot abide the light of the Sunne; nor Bankrupts, of their Counting bookes; nor deformed faces, of the Looking-glass, as our Saviour shewes, John 3.19, 20, 21.
Neither had Satan any braines, if he s ou d suffer them. A Faulkner, you [Page 35] know, will carry divers Hawkes hooded quietly; which he could not do if they had the use of their sight; or admit they should read it, I have not the least hope of their yeelding: for these lines to them, would be but as so many characters written in the water, which leave no impression behinde them, James 1.23, 24. 2 Kings 8.12, to 16. Prov. 23.35. Nor will all the water in the Sea, make one of these Blacke moores white. The drunkard hath been too long sicke of this disease to be recovered. Besides, it is a sinne that increaseth with age; a Gamester will hold out so long as his purse lasts; an Adulterer so long as his loines last; but a Drunkard so long as his lungs and life lasts. It is like a desperate Plague that knowes no cure. It may be called the Kings Evill of the soule, that none except God himselfe can heale: whence Augustine compares it to the pit of Hell, out of which there is no hope of redemption. I speake of drunkards, not of one drunken; (such who rarely and casually have Noah-like been surprised, and overtaken at unawares) but once a custom, and ever a necessity. As for instance, let them be told by any minister the hainousness of this sin, and what a fearfull reckoning of vengeance will come in the end; it is to no more purpose, then if he should speake to lifeless stones, or senseless plants, or witless beasts. For they will never fear any thing, till they be in Hell fire. They have no faith in the Scriptures, they will not beleeve what is written, therefore they shall feel what is written.
Or secondly, let God send never so heavy judgements upon the land; as Plague, Famine, Warre, or the like; these warped, wicked, wretched men, neither feare, nor cease to rore, drinke, drab, sweare, &c. so little are they moved with Gods displeasure, and those grievous judgements. Yea when the fire of Gods wrath is kindled amongst us for their sakes; they do but warm themselves at the flame, even sinning so much the more freely, and merrily: even living as if they were neither beholding to God, nor afraid of him; both out of his debt and danger. Yea as if the judgement were not onely welcome unto them, but they would fall to courting of their owne destruction: as if with Calanus, they hated to dye a naturall death.
Yea thirdly, suppose the Drunkard hath every day purposes to forsake his sin; suppose he strives against it; yea detests and bewailes it in himselfe, and others; and thereupon indents with himselfe and his friends for the relinquishing of it: yet let him but meet with a companion that holds but up his finger; he followes him as a foole to the stockes, and as a Oxe to the slaughter-house: having no power to withstand the temptation; but in he goes with him to the tipling house, and there he continues as one bewitched, or conjured with a Spell; out of which he returnes not, till he hath emptied his purse of money, his head of reason, and his heart of all his former seeming grace. O this is a difficult Devil to be cast out! and I wish men would beware of it in time; for when a man is once possest with this evill spirit, a drunken Devill; it is a miracle if ever he become his owne man after. And indeed it is much to be feared, that the Lord hath done by [Page 36] them, as by Jeremiah; he threatneth the Babylonians, even given them over to a perpetuall drunkennesse, Jer. 51.39. And is it not just with God that he who will put out his naturall light, should have his spirituall extinguished? he that will deprive himselfe of reason, should lose also the guide, and pilot of reason Gods spirit, and grace? he that will wittingly and willingly make himselfe an habitation of uncleane spirits, should not disposesse them at his pleasure?
Alas the flesh, unto them that shall perish, will be stronger then all my reasons. The sound of the pot with them, will drowne all reprehension, all admonition. They will rather be confounded then reformed; and nothing will confute them, but fire and brimstone.
All those beasts which went into the Arke uncleane, came likewise out uncleane: and a brute Beast is as capable of good counsell, as a drunkard once become a scorner: yea as Basil speakes, we were as good round a dead man in the eare, as admonish a drunkard. And indeed he is dead in sinne, (onely his sinne is alive;) and not onely dead as Jairus daughter was, Mat. 9.25. nor onely dead, laid out, and coffin'd, as the Widowes sone of Naum was, Luke 7.14. but even dead, coffin'd, and buried, with a Stone upon the Graves mouth to keep him in, by reason of long custome, as Lazarus was, John 11.39. even till he stinkes in the nostrils of God, and all good men. And what rubbing can fetch heat in such a dead body? as appeares by the exemples of Pharaod, Exod. 7. chap. to 14. The Sodomites, Gen. 19. Hazael, 2 Kings 8.12, to 16. Ahab, 1 Kings 22.16, to 53. Balaam, Num. 22.30. &c. The Scribes and Pharisees, Mat. 27.51, &c. Prov. 27.22, &c. Yea to expect that this unmasking their faces, should humble and reclaime them; were to imitate the Foole, that carried his saddle to shame his horse; or to tell them what is denounced in the Word against this sinne, were almost as ridiculous, as that Ceremony which the Mahometans use, of flinging stones to stone the Devill with. Wherefore I have no other message to deliver unto such an one, then that which the vigilant Captaine delivered, together with a deaths wound to his sleeping Watchman, Dead I found thee, and dead I leave thee.
Onely thou O Father, (to whom nothing is hard) if it be thy good pleasure, (as why not? seeing it wil make much for the glory of thy great name, to save such a mighty sinner; who Manasses-like, hath multiplyed offences above the number of the sand of the Sea; and is bound downe with many iron bands) say unto his soule, Live: It is true, thy angry threatning toward sinners is importable; but thy mercifull promise, is unmeasurable, and unsearchable: Thou therefore that art able to quicken the dead, and make even of Stones, children to Abraham, mollifie these stony and dead hearts with the bloud of the Lambe; and make of these children of the Devill, members of thy sonne Jesus Christ.
§ 39. But here some hastily, (peradventure over hastily) will say; this is a strange course, to discourse against drunkenness; when you have no expectation [Page 37] that drunkards should give it the hearing. For, as Christ said, They that are whole need not the Physitian, but they that are sicke.
To which I answer; what though these deafe Adders will not be charmed? (as that musicke loseth both its sound and grace, which is bestowed upon the deafe.) What though none of this herd of habituated drunkards will be cured? yet some young ones may be deterred, some Novices reclaimed, some Parents, Masters, and Magistrates awakened, to prevent and suppress the spreading of this Gangren: and we are no less commanded to used the meanes. I have done it also for their sakes, who are not yet infected with this drunken good fellowship, to increase their detestation of evill company, and that the others purpose may be infatuated. For vices true picture makes us vice detest. And what though every plant that is watered, proveth not fruitfull? yet if God (who it may be hath bidden me speake) but accompany his Word to the hearts of some; if but a few, if but one be perswaded, in stead of loving this vice, to hate it; the labour is not in vaine, the gaine of one soule, is greater then the Indies.
Now Physitians say, if the Disease be once knowne, the Cure is halfe done. Here you have drunkenness disapparelled of her robes, and her face so unvailed, that possibly the sight of it may cause such a loathing, and that loathing, such a forsaking; that hundreds of others may both know, abhor, and beware their allurements; strive against the sin, shun all occasions of it, bewaile their cases that are led captive to it; neglect their censures, labour their recovery, and pray for their salvation.
§ 40. Now if any of them shall aske, how they may use and apply this remedy for their best advantage? I answer, upon every occasion let them examine what the drunkard (herein set forth) does; an do the contrary: for he is the most sober and honest man, that resembles this drunkard least. Do but con this lesson, 'tis enough. Nevertheless, lest I should imitate those, who kindle a fire under green wood, and leave it so soone as it begins to flame; read also Compleat Armour against evill Society: for as in this Treatise, I have shewed what drunkards do, so in that I have shewed them, and others what they should do.
Only I will adde a word of advice; If any would escape this snare of the Devill, and Drunkards: let them have a speciall care, to refraine the company of this drunken rout,Prov. 23.20. who not onely make a sport of drunkenness, but delight also to make others drunke.
There are some Vices of that nature, that they cannot be vanquished, but by avoiding, 1 Cor. 6.18. such is this: bid a man consort a while with Drunkards, and depart from them innocent; you may as well put a match to dry powder, and forbid it to take fire. It is not sate to commit a little Wherry to the Seas violence. A stick that hath once been in the fire, will soone take fire againe; and corruption, like a candle new put out, is soone ighted againe: if Satan but blow upon it, the owne heat is enough to inflame it. It is not safe venturing into evill company, in confidence of our owne strength; no more then it is to consort with Cheaters in hope that [Page 38] they will not consen us. They wer emingled among the Heathen (saith the Psalmist,) and what followes? they learned their workes, Psal. 106.35. Yea how soone was Peter himselfe changed, with but coming into the Highpriests Hall? Nor had he ever denied, and forsworne his Master, if he had not been in company with Christs enemies. Nor had David ever so dissembled, if he had not beene among the Philistims. Which made him say, so soone as he had considered it, Depart from me all yee workers of iniquity, for I will keep the commandements of my God, Psal. 119.115. As knowing that the one could not be without the other. And indeed it is rare, if with Peter w deny not Christ in Caiaphas his house: with Solomon we shall finde it hard having the Aegyptian without her Idols. Yea how many thousand of these drunkards have confest at the Gallowes: I had never come to this, but for evill company which drew me to these courses? And indeed, why do wee pray not to be led into temptation; if wee lead our selves into temptation? if we will not keep our selves from the occasion, God will not keep us from the sinne: and if God do not keep us, wee cannot be kept; wee cannot, we will not choose but fall. Wherefore as Joseph no sooner heard his Mistris say, come let us lye together, but he left her and fled away; so if you but heare good fellowes say, come let us drinke together, be sure to leave them, though without taking your leave of them. Satan and his instruments like a flattering Host, may promise good cheere, but the reckoning payes for all; and he that compares the welcome with the farewell, shall finde he had better have fasted; for if we swallow the bait, the hooke will choak us. Wherefore be as wary, and as wife as a Serpent, to keep out, or at least to get out of their company; but as innocent as a Dove if it be possible, while thou art in i and canst not choose. Remembring alwayes, that they are but the Devils deputies; yea humane Devils, as once our Saviour called Peter (being instrumentall to Satan) Satan himselfe, Mat. 16.23. Change no words with them, for there is no disputing with Satan or his Agents; as you may see by his success in Paradise; when he so easily perswaded Eve by himselfe, and Adam by her; to beleeve what he spake, though they had heard God himself say the contrary immediately before. When Castles once come to a parly, there is great feare they will yeeld, and Gates that are alwayes open, will sometimes admit an enemy.
Neither will the complaint of our first parents be taken for a good answer, or plea another day, it will be fruitlesse to say such and such a friend deceived me: Eve was perswaded by the Serpent to eat the forbidden fruit, and Adam byEve; yet each had a severall curse; both tempters, and tempted.
§ 41. Now by observing, or not observing this rule; it will appeare whether there be any hope of thy holding out, for all depends upon this; yea could the most infatuated, habituated, incorrigible, cauterised drunkard, that is even dead in this sinne; but forsake his ill company, I should not once doubt of his recovery; for do but drive away these uncleane birds from the Carkasse, a million to amity, the Lord may be pleased to breath into his [Page 39] nostrils againe, the breath of life, and he become a living soule. O that all drunkards were driven to the Barbadoes, there to drinke water and worke, untill some divine Ulysses could procure them their reason, and perswade hem once againe to become men, sober men, yea sound Christians: so hould our Nation flourish againe, and be better provided with honest men or places of trust, both in Church and State, then now it is, where so few have publick spirits, and prove faithful. And what justerpunishment can there e devised, then that they shall be debarred both of the bloud of the Grape, nd the spirit of Barley; for consuming the Countries fat? Were not leare Rocke-water good enough for such Gormondizers? Or if authority hinkes not this fit; I could wish there were Pesthouses provided for them n all places, as there are for infected persons. Or that they were put by hemselves in some City, (if any were big enough to receive them all) as Philip King of Macedon, built a City of purpose; and peopled it with the most wicked, graceless, and irregular persons of all his subjects; and ha ing so done, called it Poneropolis, that is, the City of wicked persons.
And certainely if it were well considered, how many of these Brokers of cillany, which live only upon the spoiles of young hopes, every populous lace affords: and what evill they do by their seducing some, and giving ill xamples to others, by devouring the good Creatures of God which they ne er sweat for, by disturbing the peace of Church and Commonwealth, by ulling downe heavy judgements upon the Land, and considering the little good they doe (being as so many loose Teeth in the mandable of the Common-wealth, which were better out then in) and what small hope there is f their amendment, if any at all: the like meanes of prevention would e thought profitable for our times. I do not wish them stoned to death, as God commanded such rioters, and drunkards to be, under the Law, Deut. 21.20, 21. Nor bamshed the Land, as the Romans did all vitious, and vo uptuous persons, that the rest might not be endangered. And Lycurgus all nventers of new fashions, lest these things should effeminate all their young men: for then I feare the land would be much unpeopled. And so much for he avoiding of drunken company.
§ 42. Secondly, be carefull to abstain from drinking places, which are e en the nurseries of all riot, excess, and idleness; making our land another Sodome, and furnishing yearly our Jails, and Gallowses. Far be it from me to lame a good calling, to accuse the innocent in that calling; I know the Lord ath many in the world in these houses; but sure I am, too many of them re even the dennes, and shops, yea the thrones of Satan; very sinkes of sin, which like so many commonshoares, or receptacles, refuse not to welcome, nd incourage any in the most loathsome pollutions they are able to invent, nd put in practice.
Who if there were any hope of prevailing, would be minded of their wic edness, in entertaining into their houses, encouraging, and complying with hese Traitors against God; and of their danger in suffering so much im iety, to rest within their Gates. For if one sinne of Theft, or of perjury is [Page 40] enough to rot the Rafters, to grinde the stones, to levell the wals, and roofe of any house, with the ground, as is laid down Zach. 5.4. what are the oathes, the lyes, the thefts, the whoredomes, the murthers, the numberless, and nameless abominations, that are committed there? But should I speake to these, I should but speed as Paul at Ephesus; I should be cryed downe with Great is Diana, after some one Demetrius had told the rest of this occupation, Sirs, ye know that by this craft we have our wealth. Surely if feare of having their Signes pulled downe, their licenses called in, &c. cannot prevaile, it little bootes me to speake.
§ 43. Only to you Churchwardens, Constables, and other Officers, that love the Lord, the Church, the State, your selves, and people; Help the Lord, the King and his Lawes, against this mighty sinne; present it, indict it, smite it, every one shoot at it as a common enemy, do what you can to suppress and prevent it.
Tell me not he is a friend, a gentleman, such an ones kinsman that offends, for he is better, and greater, and nearer to you, that is offended. Learne to feare, to love, and obey your Maker, and Saviour, your Soveraigne and Protector. Yea learne this Norman distinction; when William the first, censured one that was both Bishop of Bajeux, and Earle of Kent; his Apology to the plaintife popeling was, that he meddled not with the Bishop, but the Earle do you the like, let the gentleman escape, but stock the drunkard; meddle not with your friend, and kinsman, but for all that pay the drunkard, and make his Host pay that suffers him to be drunke. O if you do not to your power, you shall have Ahabs wages, his faults shall be beaten upon your backs. 1 King. 20.42.
§ 44. But most of all are they to be desired, who are within the commission of Peace in Gods name, whose servants they professe themselves to be, to remember him, themselves, their country, their oathes, and to bend their strength and power against this manyheaded Monster; that they will purge their Country, much more their owne houses, of this pernicious and viperous brood. Yea if there be any love of God, any hatred of sinne, any zeal, any courage, any conscience of an oath: away with drunkennesse out of your Houses, Townes, Liberties; balk none, beare with none that offend: say they be poore in whose houses the sinne is practised; it is better one or two should lose their gaine, then Townes of men should lose their wits, their wealths, their soules. O beloved, did you heare, and see, and smell, and know, what is done in some one Taverne, or Alehouse (hellhouse I might call it) in this land; you would wonder that the earth could bear the house, or the Sunne endure to looke upon it. But alas how many of these Houses be there in some one Towne? how many of these Townes in some one Shire, and so upward?
You often complaine of Bastardies, Sheep stealers, robbers, quarrellers, and the like, will you be eased of these diseases? beleeve it, these gather into the Alehouse, as the humours do into the stomach against an Ague fit; take them there, drive them thence, with some strong physick; and you heale our land at once of infinite distempers.[Page 41]
Here I might also minde you, of most prisons: Just Lot was vexed with the uncleanly conversation of his wicked neighbours; Sodome was worse then a Jaile, to his righteous soule; and report lyes, if our Jailes be not much like to Sodome; the very dens of mischiefe, the schooles of wickedness; a malefactor, or broken Shopkeeper, learnes more villany there, then ever he knew before. Drunkennesse, and blasphemy, usurpe the places of Mortification and Humility, though most unfit it should be so.
Such as would know more of this, and other subjects more serious; let them read Sinne Stigmatized, from which I have pluckt this, as a Bunch of Grapesfrom a large Vine.
Appendix A POSTSCRIPT.
THE Spartans and Lacedemonians, used to shew their Slaves in their drunkenness unto their children, thinking that their ugly deformity both in body and minde, would be an effectual argument to make them loath this vice, which even at the first view seemed so horrid. The Persians and Parthians also, to the same end kept alwayes in their houses the like ugly, and deformed descriptions lively painted out; and found it by experience, the most operative and effectuall course to keep theirs from excesse. And nothing, as Anacharsis holds, will sooner reclaime a man from Drunkennesse, then the seeing and remembring of a drunkards odious condition, and beastly behaviour.
Would we then that are Christians have our children and servants decline this bewitching, besotting, infectious, and incurable sinne; this wastefull, insatiable, unreasonable, unnaturall sinne; this base, brutish, atheisticall, execrable, prodigious, and infernall sinne; this transcendent sin, which is the cause of all other sins; yea a confluence or collection of every sinne; even turning a man wholly into sinne: this sinne that is the Funerall of all a mans good parts, and indisposeth him to all grace and godlinesse; yea to all the means thereof? use we them, and that often, to read over in our families, this description of a drunkard: and for ought we know, ours and after generations, may by Gods blessing, be less inamored with this loathsome, and worse then beastly abomination.