The Egyptians trembled not under several judgments, nor minded not what Moses and Aaron said, till God smote their firstborn, and then they tremble, and then the servants of the Lord and their counsel found better quarter with them than formerly they had done. Ah, friends! has the Lord smitten your firstborn, as I may say? then look to it, as you tender the honour of God, the advancement of the gospel, the peace of your own consciences, the stopping of the mouths of the wicked, and the gladding of those hearts that God would not have sadded, that God be more dreaded, and that his servants and his services be more owned, loved, and regarded. The people of God, and the ordinances of God, are to God as his firstborn; and they that make light of God’s firstborn, God will make as light of their firstborn. These Egyptians had slain Israel, God’s firstborn, and therefore God smites their firstborn. My desire and prayer shall be that God’s removing and taking away your firstborn, as I may say, may be the making of more room in your bosoms for God, Christ, saints, and ordinances, that so your great loss may be turned into the greatest gain. And certainly, if this physic, this potion that is given you by an outstretched hand from heaven do not work this, the next potion will be far more bitter, John v. 14.