Of The Mole In The Ground

The mole's a creature very smooth and slick,
She digs i' th' dirt, but 'twill not on her stick;
So's he who counts this world his greatest gains,
Yet nothing gets but's labour for his pains.
Earth's the mole's element, she can't abide
To be above ground, dirt heaps are her pride;
And he is like her who the worldling plays,
He imitates her in her work and ways.
Poor silly mole, that thou should'st love to be
Where thou nor sun, nor moon, nor stars can see.
But O! how silly's he who doth not care
So he gets earth, to have of heaven a share!

As 'tis appointed men should die,
So judgment is the next
That meets them most assuredly;
For so saith holy text.

Wherefore of judgment I shall now
Inform you what I may,
That you may see what 'tis, and how
'Twill be with men that day.

This world it hath a time to stand,
Which time when ended, then
Will issue judgment out of hand
Upon all sorts of men.

The Judge we find, in God's record,
The Son of man, for he
By God's appointment is made Lord
And Judge of all that be.

Wherefore this Son of man shall come
At last to count with all,
And unto them shall give just doom,
Whether they stand or fall.

Behold ye now the majesty
And state that shall attend
This Lord, this Judge, and Justice high
When he doth now descend.

He comes with head as white as snow,
With eyes like flames of fire;
In justice clad from top to toe,
Most glorious in attire.

His face is filled with gravity;
His tongue is like a sword;
His presence awes both stout and high,
The world shakes at his word.

He comes in flaming fire, and
With angels clear and bright,
Each with a trumpet in his hand,
Clothed in shining white.

The trump of God sounds in the air,
The dead do hear his voice;
The living too run here and there,
Who made not him their choice.

Thus to his place he doth repair,
Appointed for his throne,
Where he will sit to judge, and where
He'll count with every one.

Angels attending on his hand
By thousands on a row;
Yea, thousand thousands by him stand,
And at his beck do go.

Thus being set, the books do ope
In which all crimes are writ.
All virtues, too, of faith and hope,
Of love; and every whit

Of all that man hath done or said,
Or did intend to do;
Whether they sinn'd, or were afraid
Evil to come into.

Before this bar each sinner now
In person must appear;
Under his judgment there to bow
With trembling and with fear:

Within whose breast a witness then
Will certainly arise,
That to each charge will say Amen,
While they seek and devise

To shun the sentence which the Lord
Against them then will read,
Out of the books of God's record,
With majesty and dread.

But every heart shall opened be
Before this judge most high;
Yea, every thought to judgment he
Will bring assuredly.

And every word and action, too,
He there will manifest;
Yea, all that ever thou didst do,
Or keep within thy breast,

Shall then be seen and laid before
The world, that then will stand
To see thy judge open ev'ry sore,
And all thy evils scann'd.

Weighing each sin and wickedness
With so much equity,
Proportioning of thy distress
And woful misery.

With so much justice, doing right,
That thou thyself shalt say,
My sins have brought me to this plight,
I threw myself away.

Into that gulph my sins have brought
Me justly to possess,
For which I blame not Christ, I wrought
It out by wickedness.

But O! how willingly would these
That thus in judgment be,
If that they might have help or ease,
Unto the mountains flee.

They would rejoice if that they might
But underneath them creep,
To hide them from revenging right,
For fear of which they weep.

But all in vain, the mountains then
Will all be fled and gone;
No shelter will be found for men
That now are left alone.

For succour they did not regard
When Christ by grace did call
To them, therefore they are not heard,
No mountains on them fall.

Before this Judge no one shall shroud
Himself, under pretence
Of knowledge, which hath made him proud,
Nor seeming penitence.

No high profession here can stand,
Unless sincerity
Hath been therewith commixed, and
Brought forth simplicity.[7]

No mask nor vizor here can hide
The heart that rotten is;
All cloaks now must be laid aside,
No sinner must have bliss.

Though most approve of thee, and count
Thee upright in thy heart;
Yea, though preferred and made surmount
Most men to act thy part,

In treading where the godly trod,
As to an outward show;
Yet this hold still, the grace of God
Takes hold on but a few,

So as to make them truly such
As then shall stand before
This Judge with gladness; this is much
Yet true for evermore.

The tree of life this paradise
Doth always beautify,
'Cause of our health it is the rise
And perpetuity.

Here stands the golden throne of grace
From out of which do run
Those crystal streams that make this place
Far brighter than the sun.

Here stands mount Zion with her king.
Jerusalem above,
That holy and delightful thing,
So beautified with love.

That, as a mother succours those
Which of her body be,
So she far more, all such as close
In with her Lord; and she

Her grace, her everlasting doors
Will open wide unto
Them all, with welcome, welcome, poor,
Rich, bond, free, high and low,

Unto the kingdom which our Lord
Appointed hath for all
That hath his name and word ador'd;
Because he did them call

Unto that work, which also they
Sincerely did fulfil,
Not shunning always to obey
His gracious holy will.

Besides, this much doth beautify
This goodly paradise,
That from all quarters, constantly,
Whole thousands as the price

Of precious blood, do here arrive;
As safe escaping all,
Sin, hell, and satan did contrive
To bring them into thrall.

Each telling his deliverance
I' th' open face of heaven;
Still calling to remembrance
How fiercely they were driven

By deadly foe, who did pursue
As swift as eagles fly;
Which if thou have not, down thou must
With those that then shall die
The second death, and be accurs'd
Of God. For certainly,

The truth of grace shall only here
Without a blush be bold
To stand, whilst others quake and fear,
And dare not once behold.

That heart that here was right for God
Shall there be comforted;
But those that evil ways have trod,
Shall then hang down the head.

As sore confounded with the guilt
That now upon them lies,
Because they did delight in filth
And beastly vanities.

Or else because they did deceive
With hypocritical
Disguises, their own souls, and leave
Or shun that best of all

Approved word of righteousness,
They were invited to
Embrace, therefore they no access
Now to him have, but woe.

For every one must now receive
According to their ways;
They that unto the Lord did cleave,
The everlasting joys.

Those that did die in wickedness,
To execution sent,
There still to grapple with distress,
Which nothing can prevent.

Of which two states I next shall write,
Wherefore I pray give ear,
And to them bend with all our might
Your heart with filial fear.

The Sinner And The Spider

Sinner.

What black, what ugly crawling thing art thou?

Spider.

I am a spider——————-

Sinner.

A spider, ay, also a filthy creature.

Spider.

Not filthy as thyself in name or feature.
My name entailed is to my creation,
My features from the God of thy salvation.

Sinner.

I am a man, and in God's image made,
I have a soul shall neither die nor fade,
God has possessed me with human reason,
Speak not against me lest thou speakest treason.
For if I am the image of my Maker,
Of slanders laid on me He is partaker.

Spider.

I know thou art a creature far above me,
Therefore I shun, I fear, and also love thee.
But though thy God hath made thee such a creature,
Thou hast against him often played the traitor.
Thy sin has fetched thee down: leave off to boast;
Nature thou hast defiled, God's image lost.
Yea, thou thyself a very beast hast made,
And art become like grass, which soon doth fade.
Thy soul, thy reason, yea, thy spotless state,
Sin has subjected to th' most dreadful fate.
But I retain my primitive condition,
I've all but what I lost by thy ambition.

Sinner.

Thou venomed thing, I know not what to call thee,
The dregs of nature surely did befall thee,
Thou wast made of the dross and scum of all,
Man hates thee; doth, in scorn, thee spider call.

Spider.

My venom's good for something, 'cause God made it,
Thy sin hath spoiled thy nature, doth degrade it.
Of human virtues, therefore, though I fear thee,
I will not, though I might, despise and jeer thee.
Thou say'st I am the very dregs of nature,
Thy sin's the spawn of devils, 'tis no creature.
Thou say'st man hates me 'cause I am a spider,
Poor man, thou at thy God art a derider;
My venom tendeth to my preservation,
Thy pleasing follies work out thy damnation.
Poor man, I keep the rules of my creation,
Thy sin has cast thee headlong from thy station.
I hurt nobody willingly, but thou
Art a self-murderer; thou know'st not how
To do what good is; no, thou lovest evil;
Thou fliest God's law, adherest to the devil.

Sinner.

Ill-shaped creature, there's antipathy
'Twixt man and spiders, 'tis in vain to lie;
I hate thee, stand off, if thou dost come nigh me,
I'll crush thee with my foot; I do defy thee.

Spider.

They are ill-shaped, who warped are by sin,
Antipathy in thee hath long time been
To God; no marvel, then, if me, his creature,
Thou dost defy, pretending name and feature.
But why stand off? My presence shall not throng thee,
'Tis not my venom, but thy sin doth wrong thee.
Come, I will teach thee wisdom, do but hear me,
I was made for thy profit, do not fear me.
But if thy God thou wilt not hearken to,
What can the swallow, ant, or spider do?
Yet I will speak, I can but be rejected,
Sometimes great things by small means are effected.
Hark, then, though man is noble by creation,
He's lapsed now to such degeneration,
Is so besotted and so careless grown,
As not to grieve though he has overthrown
Himself, and brought to bondage everything
Created, from the spider to the king.
This we poor sensitives do feel and see;
For subject to the curse you made us be.
Tread not upon me, neither from me go;
'Tis man which has brought all the world to woe,
The law of my creation bids me teach thee;
I will not for thy pride to God impeach thee.
I spin, I weave, and all to let thee see,
Thy best performances but cobwebs be.
Thy glory now is brought to such an ebb,
It doth not much excel the spider's web;
My webs becoming snares and traps for flies,
Do set the wiles of hell before thine eyes;
Their tangling nature is to let thee see,
Thy sins too of a tangling nature be.
My den, or hole, for that 'tis bottomless,
Doth of damnation show the lastingness.
My lying quiet until the fly is catch'd,
Shows secretly hell hath thy ruin hatch'd.
In that I on her seize, when she is taken,
I show who gathers whom God hath forsaken.
The fly lies buzzing in my web to tell
Thee how the sinners roar and howl in hell.
Now, since I show thee all these mysteries,
How canst thou hate me, or me scandalize?

Sinner.

Well, well; I no more will be a derider,
I did not look for such things from a spider.

Spider.

Come, hold thy peace; what I have yet to say,
If heeded, help thee may another day.
Since I an ugly ven'mous creature be,
There is some semblance 'twixt vile man and me.
My wild and heedless runnings are like those
Whose ways to ruin do their souls expose.
Daylight is not my time, I work in th' night,
To show they are like me who hate the light.
The maid sweeps one web down, I make another,
To show how heedless ones convictions smother;
My web is no defence at all to me,
Nor will false hopes at judgment be to thee.

Sinner.

O spider, I have heard thee, and do wonder
A spider should thus lighten and thus thunder.

Spider.

Do but hold still, and I will let thee see
Yet in my ways more mysteries there be.
Shall not I do thee good, if I thee tell,
I show to thee a four-fold way to hell;
For, since I set my web in sundry places,
I show men go to hell in divers traces.
One I set in the window, that I might
Show some go down to hell with gospel light.
One I set in a corner, as you see,
To show how some in secret snared be.
Gross webs great store I set in darksome places,
To show how many sin with brazen faces;
Another web I set aloft on high,
To show there's some professing men must die.
Thus in my ways God wisdom doth conceal,
And by my ways that wisdom doth reveal.
I hide myself when I for flies do wait,
So doth the devil when he lays his bait;
If I do fear the losing of my prey,
I stir me, and more snares upon her lay:
This way and that her wings and legs I tie,
That, sure as she is catch'd, so she must die.
But if I see she's like to get away,
Then with my venom I her journey stay.
All which my ways the devil imitates
To catch men, 'cause he their salvation hates.

Sinner.

O spider, thou delight'st me with thy skill!
I pr'ythee spit this venom at me still.

Spider.

I am a spider, yet I can possess
The palace of a king, where happiness
So much abounds. Nor when I do go thither,
Do they ask what, or whence I come, or whither
I make my hasty travels; no, not they;
They let me pass, and I go on my way.
I seize the palace, do with hands take hold
Of doors, of locks, or bolts; yea, I am bold,
When in, to clamber up unto the throne,
And to possess it, as if 'twere mine own.
Nor is there any law forbidding me
Here to abide, or in this palace be.
Yea, if I please, I do the highest stories
Ascend, there sit, and so behold the glories
Myself is compassed with, as if I were
One of the chiefest courtiers that be there.
Here lords and ladies do come round about me,
With grave demeanour, nor do any flout me
For this, my brave adventure, no, not they;
They come, they go, but leave me there to stay.
Now, my reproacher, I do by all this
Show how thou may'st possess thyself of bliss:
Thou art worse than a spider, but take hold
On Christ the door, thou shalt not be controll'd.
By him do thou the heavenly palace enter;
None chide thee will for this thy brave adventure;
Approach thou then unto the very throne,
There speak thy mind, fear not, the day's thine own;
Nor saint, nor angel, will thee stop or stay,
But rather tumble blocks out of the way.
My venom stops not me; let not thy vice
Stop thee; possess thyself of paradise.
Go on, I say, although thou be a sinner,
Learn to be bold in faith, of me a spinner.
This is the way the glories to possess,
And to enjoy what no man can express.
Sometimes I find the palace door uplock'd,
And so my entrance thither has upblock'd.
But am I daunted? No, I here and there
Do feel and search; so if I anywhere,
At any chink or crevice, find my way,
I crowd, I press for passage, make no stay.
And so through difficulty I attain
The palace; yea, the throne where princes reign.
I crowd sometimes, as if I'd burst in sunder;
And art thou crushed with striving, do not wonder.
Some scarce get in, and yet indeed they enter;
Knock, for they nothing have, that nothing venture.
Nor will the King himself throw dirt on thee,
As thou hast cast reproaches upon me.
He will not hate thee, O thou foul backslider!
As thou didst me, because I am a spider.
Now, to conclude since I such doctrine bring,
Slight me no more, call me not ugly thing.
God wisdom hath unto the piss-ant given,
And spiders may teach men the way to heaven.

Sinner.

Well, my good spider, I my errors see,
I was a fool for railing upon thee.
Thy nature, venom, and thy fearful hue,
Both show that sinners are, and what they do.
Thy way and works do also darkly tell,
How some men go to heaven, and some to hell.
Thou art my monitor, I am a fool;
They learn may, that to spiders go to school.

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