Here is, 1. The wretched character of wicked people. The temper of their minds is bad. They are proud; they magnify themselves above others. And yet that is not all: they magnify themselves against God, and set up their wills in competition with and opposition to the will of God, as if their hearts, and tongues, and all, were their own. There is something of pride at the bottom of every wilful sin, and the tenour of their lives is no better: They do err from thy commandments, as Israel, that did always err in their hearts; they err in judgment, and embrace principles contrary to thy commandments, and then no wonder that they err in practice, and wilfully turn aside out of the good way. This is the effect of their pride; for they say, What is the Almighty, that we should serve him? As Pharaoh, Who is the Lord? 2. The wretched case of such. They are certainly cursed, for God resists the proud; and those that throw off the commands of the law lay themselves under its curse (Gal. 3:10), and he that now beholds them afar off will shortly say to them, Go, you cursed. The proud sinners bless themselves; God curses them; and, though the most direful effects of this curse are reserved for the other world, yet they are often severely rebuked in this world: Providence crosses them, vexes them, and, wherein they dealt proudly, God shows himself above them; and these rebukes are earnests of worse. David took notice of the rebukes proud men were under, and it made him cleave the more closely to the word of God and pray the more earnestly that he might not err from God’s commandments. Thus saints get good by God’s judgments on sinners.
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