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CHA P. IX.
Concerning just dealing in Traffick, Trai
ding, and Commerce. Bserve a strict integrity, and uprightness in
all occasions of intercourse, maccers of traffick, commerce, and bargaining; making con science to be true in thy words, faithful in chy promises, punctual in thy performances, and in all things, dealing juftly and uprightly ; doing to others (according to our Saviours Golden rule, Luke 6.31.) As thou wouldst that others should do to thee, Mat.7.12. Whatsoever ye would ( wich a rectified judgment, and an honest heart) that men should do so you, even lo do ge to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. In all contracts, and acts of commerce with others, 'cis good to put our felves in their stead; and co make frequent appeals to our own consciences, and to ask our selves, Would I be thus dealt with? Would I be content to have this measure measured to my felf? Should I (if it were my own case) think this fair dealing, if used towards my self?. Paul faies Gal. 5.14
All the Law is fulfilled in one word (chac is, all that part of the Law which concerns oar duty towards man) Thou shale love thy neighboner as ihy self. This expreffiox prescribes the manner
of our love, not the measure of it; a parity or likenesse for kind, noe for degree or proportion.
Thac therefore the black art of defrauding may be abhorr’d, and all deceit in traffick and commerce avoided; I shall give some. Directions both to buyers and sellers, which (if carefully observed) will exceedingly tend to their comfort and advantage: For light and honest gains maké a heavy purse, whilst great and dishonest make a heavy heart.
Directions to buyers.
1. Let not the buyer debase or difpraise a good : commodity that he is about to buy, to bring down the price, and to get it for leffe chan he knows it to be worth, Prov.20.14. It is naught,
it is naught, faith the buyer, but when he is gone - his way, iben he beasteth.
2. Lec noc che buyer peremptorily say he will give no more for a commodity, than he offers, yet intend to give more
rather than out it. 'Tis too frequent with buyers to say they will not give a farthing more, and with sellers, co say, they will not take a farthing less, and yet ufuso al with both to go from their words,
3. Give good and currant money for what you buy, Gen.23.16. And Abraham weighed to Ephron the silver which he had named in the
audience of the Sons of Heth, four hundred Shekels of silver, car
rant money with the Merchapt. To put away brasse or false money, (when you know it to be false, chough perhaps you took it for good, except you return it to the person of whoin you re. ceived it) is a branch of deceit. 'Tis better to suffer wrong, than to do
wrong. 4. Do not work upon the weaknesse or neceffity of the seller, and so give him lefe than in your Conscience you apprehend the thing to be justly worth becween man and man. Soine will not buy, except they may have that they are dealing for, at their own price; though the seller cannot lo afford it. We ihould be willing to give to the worth of the thing we buy,according to common estimation. If the buyer give a price (knowingly) far inferiour to the true valme, he is an over-reacher : If he work
upon the necessities of the poor, who must fell to buy bread, he is an oppressour.
5. In your buying a commodicy, do not sake ang advantage of any oversight, or mistake in the seller, Gen. 43 .12. And the money that w.4s brought again in the mouth of your sacks, carry it again in your hand, peradventure it was an overfight.
6. Bxy not any thing on the Lords day, excepe upon abfolute necessity. Let God have the time confecrated to his Worship. Lec chere be no bargaining nor dealing on that day.
7. Buy not any stollen goods (if you know them to be ftollen) chough the price be never so
1. Do not multiply words in selling, Prov.10. | 19. In the multitude of words there wanteth not fin. Zach. 11. 12. If ye think good, give me my price, if not forbear.
II. Do nor highly commend and over-praise a commodity you know to be faulty; nor fell that for good, which you know is nocfo
. Do not lie, nor equivocate. How many are there, that in this case, co deceit, add lying; and (too often) bind all these fins together with an oath, swearing their commodities are good, when they know they are not ? And then what an heap of fin is here gathered together? abundantly enough to sink any poor soul inco Hell: And all this, to skrew a little more money out of their neighbours pockets; and that fumcimes so very little, chac ic is an amazing wonder, how any man thac chinks he has a foul, can set it ac lo miserable and contempo tible a prices
III. Do not disguise and hide the faults of the commodities yo. sell, by using some art to them, to make chem look fairer and better than indeed they are. This is acting a le though it be not Speaking one ) which has surely as much of the intention of cheating and defrauding as the most impudent lying can have. Hereby mou makest chy neighbour pay for somewhat which is
not in the thing thou sellest him, he presuming there is that good quality in it, which thou knowest is nor.
IV. Do not sell commodities by false weights or measures, Amos 8.5. When will the new Moon be gone, that we may sell corn? and the Sabbath, that we may set forth wheat, making the Ephab small, and the Shekeb great, and fallifying the ballances by deceit ? Prov. 20.10. Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomi. nation to the Lord, Deat.25.14,15. Then shał: not have in thine house divers measures, a great, and a small. But thou shall have a perfe&t and jus. weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have , that thy daies may be lengthened in the land which the Lord thy God giveth ihee, Micah 6.10. Are there
yet the treasures of wickednesse in the house of the wicked, and the scant measure, that is abeininable?
V. In selling, do not work upon the ignorants or unskilfulnes of the buyer: If you discern him to be unskilful, use him rather the better, chan the worse. Zeph 1.9. In the same day also will punish those that leap on the threshold, and fill ther Masters houses with violence and deceit. I The 4.6. That no man go beyond, and defraud his bri ther in any matter; because that she Lord is the venger of all such, as we also have forewarne you, and testified. Neither cake advantage c his present urgent neceffity: Do not make him