(Thomas Brooks, "The Privy Key of Heaven" 1665)
"You have a whore's forehead, you refuse to be
ashamed!" Jeremiah 3:3
"Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No,
they have no shame at all! They do not even know
how to blush!" Jeremiah 6:15
They had sinned away shame--instead of being ashamed of
sin. Continuance in sin had quite banished all sense of sin
and all shame for sin; so that they would not allow nature
to draw her veil of blushing before their great abominations.
How applicable these scriptures are to the present time, I
will leave the prudent reader to judge.
But what does the prophet do, now that they were as bold in
sin, and as shameless as so many harlots; now that they were
grown up to that height of sin and wickedness; now that they
were above all shame and blushing; now that they were grown
so proud, so hardened, so obstinate, so rebellious, so bent on
self-destruction--that no mercies could melt them or allure them,
nor any threatenings or judgments could in any way terrify them
or stop them? The prophet goes into a corner, he retires into the
most secret places, and there he weeps bitterly; there he weeps
as if he were resolved to drown himself in his own tears. "I will
weep in secret because of your pride; my eyes will weep bitterly,
overflowing with tears." Jeremiah 13:17
In the times wherein we live, hell seems to be broken loose, and
men turned into incarnate devils! Soul-damning wickednesses
walk up and down the streets with a whore's forehead, without
the least check or restraint.
Ah, England, England! what pride, luxury, lasciviousness,
licentiousness, wantonness, drunkenness, cruelties, injustice,
oppressions, fornications, adulteries, falsehoods, hypocrisies,
atheisms, horrid blasphemies, and hellish impieties--are now
to be found rampant in the midst of you! Ah, England!
England! how are the Scriptures rejected, God derided,
and wickedness tolerated!
And what is the voice of all these crying abominations--but
every Christian to his closet--every Christian to his closet--and
there weep, with weeping Jeremiah, bitterly--for all these great
abominations whereby God is dishonored openly. Oh weep in
secret for their sins--who openly glory in their sins, which should
be their greatest shame. Oh blush in secret for those who are
past all blushing for their sins; for who knows, but that the
whole land may fare the better for the sakes of a few, who
are mourners in secret?