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S E R M O N L 

Page 9. 



Wot ye not what the Scripture ssuth of Elias ? How he ma- 

keth inttrcession to God agamat Israel, saying, Lord, they 

have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars : 

and I am left alo^e, and they seek my life. But what saith 

c? the answer of God unto him? I have reserved io inyself 

r\ seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the 

^ image of BaaL— Rom. xi. 2,--4. 


o Pftge 29, 


* Here is the patience of the saints**— Rev. xiv. 12« 




* And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell 

there ; and make there an altar unto God, that appeared 
unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy 
brother. Then Jacob $aid unto his household, and to all 
that were with him, Put away the strange Gods that are 
among you, and be clean, and change your garments : and let 
. US arise, and go up to Bethel ; and I will make there an 
altar unto €rod, who answered me in the day of my dis-» 
tress, and was with me in the way which I went-^GEK. 
XXXV. 1, 2, 3. 


SERMON rv. ,* 

Page 68. 

And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit 
within you: and I will take the stony heart out of their 
flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh ; that they may 
walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do 
them : and they shall l^ my people, and I will be their 
- God.>^EzCKi££ xi. 19* 23. 


Pag^ 89. 


I fear the Lord from my youth. — 1 Kings xviii. 12. 

S E R M O N VL- 

Page 113. 



If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.-— Marx iv. 23« 


Page 133. 



' For it became him, for ivhom are all things, and by whom 

are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make 

I the Captain of their salvation perfect through dufferings. 

Hebrews ii« lO. 

SERMON vra. 

t . 

Page 155. * 


Should It be according to hy mind f-— Job xxxiv. 33. 


Page \77, 


Woe to them that are at ease in Zion.-^AMos vi. 1. 


S 3E R M O N X. 

Page 202. 

^-There i!eiiiaia«tb yet very much land to be possessed.— 

JoftHVA xiii.' X» . 


Page 225. 

. For the Lord God is a sun and shield : the Lord will give ^ce 
and glory : no good thing wiU he withhold from them that 
walk uprightly*— Psalm Ixxxiv. 11. 


Page 246. 



I pray not that thoa shouldest take them out of the world, hut 

that thou shouldest keep, Uieip f^om the evil. — St. John 

xvii.' 15. 


Page 2^9. 

And there went forth a wind from the Lord, and brought 

quaib from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it 

were a day's journey on this side, and as it were a day's 

jpumey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it 

were two cubits high upon the fa^ce of the earth. And the 

people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the 

next day, and they gathered the quails : he that gathered 

least gathered ten homers ; and th^^ spread them all abroad 

for themselves round about the camp. And while the flesh 

was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath 

of the Lord was kindled a^iiftt the people ? and the Lord 

smote the people with a very great plague. And he calkd 

the name of that place Kibroth-Hattaaavah : because there 

they buried the people that lusted»--^jNytf bers zi. 31-^34. 


S E R M O N XW. 

Page 385. 


And hope maketh not ashamed, because the love of Gk>d it- 
shed abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost which is p- 
ven unto us. — ^Romans v. 5. 

S E R M O N XV. ' 

t Page 303. 


What think ye ? A certain man had two Sons ; and he came 
to the first, and said, Son, go work to-day in my vinty^rdm 
He answered and said, I will not; but afterward he repen- 
ted, and went. And he came to the second, and ss^d like- 
wise. And he answered^ and said, I go, Sir; and went 
not. Whether of them did the will of his father i Thej 
fiay untp him, the first — Matthew xxi. 98—31. 


Page «22. 

And besides this, giving all diligence, add to your faith vir- 
tue ; and to virtue, knowledge ; and to knowledge, tem- 
perance : and to temperance, patience ; and to patiencci 
godliness ; and to godliness, brotherly kindness ; and to 
brotheily kindness, charity.— r^ Peter, i. 5 — -7. 


Page 339. 

Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, 
therefore the hearts of the soi^s of men is fully set in diem 
to do evi^.^— EccLESiASTEs viii. 11. 


Pftge 355* 


In this the diildrea of God are manifest^ and the duldrtn of 

At devil : whosoever doeth not ri^teouBness is not of God, 
neither he that loveth not his brother. — 1 Johk. iii. 10, 


• * * 

^'' \ Page 370. 


Ifbs voice of rejoicing is in the tabernacle of the righteous. — 
Psalm cxviii. 15. 

S E R M O N XX. 

Page 388. 


I^or so an» entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly, 
into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Je- 
sus Christ.—- 2 Peter i. 11. 


Page 404. 


And it came to pass in the seven and twentieth year, in the 
first month, in the first day of the month, the word of the 
Lord came unto me, saying. Son of. man, Nebuchadrezzar, 
king of Babylon, caused his army to serve a great service 
against l^rus ; every head was made bald, and every shoul- 
der was peeled ; yet had he no wages, nor his army for 1^- 
rus, for the service that he had served against it : therefore 
thus saith the Lord God, Behold I will give the land of 
Egypt unto Nebuchadrezzar king oHBabylon ; and he shall 
take her multitude, and take her spoil, and take her prey : 
and it shall be the wages for his ^frmy. I have given him 
the land of Eg3rpt for his labour therewith he served against 
it, because they wrought for me, saith tlie Lord God.-—* 
EzEKiEL xxix. IT — ^20. 


Page 4^0. 


^Iliea I said, I shall die in my nest^—JoA xxix. 18* 



Page 438. 


No man can serve two masters ; for either he wiU hate the one 
and lave the other ; or else he will hold to the one, and des- 
pise the other. Te cannot serve God and mammon^— Mat- 
thew vi. 24. 


Page 458. 


And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said. 
Behold my mother and my brethren ! for whosoever shall 
do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is 
my brother, and sister, and mother. — ^Matthew zii. 49, 50. 



A Sermon preached before the Bedford Union* 
I am glorified in them.— J^ohn xvii. 10. 






Rom. 30. 2i— <4. 

War rs vot wbat the scripture saitr ofElias? HbHraBM^-^ 




V V HO can understand his errors ?" 
How numerous, how various, how oppollte to each 
other, are the mistakes of mankind? The lives and 
the language of many seem to imply a fuB persuasion, 
that there is very little evil in sin ; th^t the difficulties^ 
of religion are by no means great ; that ic is an easy 
thing to be a christian \ that if there be a hell, few are 
wicktd enough to be turned into it ; and that the gen- 
erality of our fellow creatures are in a fair way for 
heaven. TIus persuaition \s as false as it is fatal. 
^* Enter ye \q at the strait gate : for wide is the gate^ 

^^aad broad id the way which leadeth to de^tjuction, 



^^ Mistakes concerning the [Ser. r. 

" and many there be which go in thereat : because 
« tstrait is the gate, and narrow is the way that ieadeth 
« unto life, and few there be that find it.*' 

. Is it possible, however, to fall into another extreme, 
and to draw an unwarrantable coiKlusioa. respecting 
the 3tate of rdigion, and the number of its adherents ; 
and even wise men, and good men, are liable to this. 
« Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias ? how 
" he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, 
** Lord, they hjive killed thy prophets, and digged 
^ down thine altars j and i am left alone, and they 
" seek my life. But what saith the answer of God 
^ unto him ? I have reserved to myself seven thousand 
«* men, who have not bowed the knee to thie image 
^ of Baal." 

We are going then to examine the opinion that 
reduces the number of the righteous. We (hall lay 
open the various sources from which it proceeds, and 
by discovering the cause, we skall prescribe the cure. 

Sometimes we draw the conchision from the pe- 
culiar s-BHTE OF OUR OWN MINDS. By the< indiso 
position of the body, or the depression of the animal 
i^rits, our minds are soon affected ; we become sad, 
gloomy, peevish, suspicious. In this situation our 
minds ar^^nhingedi, and easily receive a falling mo- 
tion ; we are more alive to the influence of fear tliaR 
hope J the darker the ijitelligence^ the more credible ; 
ofle direction is given to every occurrence,. and the 
invariable inference is^ ^« aU these things are gainst 
^ me**^ And such seems to have been ih^ coaditioa 
of Elijak. i& fanguage betirays acrimany^ f etulancy, 
and despair. 

Sfin* I.] Number cf tbei Righteout. 11 

Soipetiixies ve are led to this reflectfon, bt ouerv- 


These are to b^ found in ev?ry period of the church : 
our own age abounds. with them, and sopie of these 
iunhappy characters excite our surprise, as well as our 
sorrow. They promised fair j they " did many woo- 
derful things-}** for a while they bore cheerfully *^ the 
" reproaclv of the cross ;" thej'' passed us on the road, 
and reprove^ the sluggishness of our steps. By and 
by we jnet them on their retwn, laughing at ths^t 
which once nudje them tremble, and loathing ths^t 
which was once esteemed by them fflke life from the 
dead* Our entreaties were despised; as far as the 
eye could re^ich, we watched them with tears and 
alarm J stft down " discouraged because qS the way,** 
and "said in our haste all men are Hars/'—** Take 
" ye heed every one of his neighbour, and trust ye not 
" in ANY brother : for every brother wUi utterly sup- 
**plaat, and £very neighbour wiH walk with flaij- 
" ders," But it was in our haste we said this ; it was a 
rash conclusion. What, because there is counterfeit 
coin, is there no genuine gold ? Were all the disciples 
fake, because one of them was adevili *' They Went 
** out from us, but they were not of us : for if they 
^ had been of us, they would no doubt have continued 
** with us : but they went out that it might be made 
" manifest they were jQot aB of us.*' But, alas ! the 
falliivg star strikes every eye, while few observe the 
fixed -^nd the regular orbs. The apostacy i^ one 
pretender often excites more attention than the lives 
of many solid and fleady christians. They who would 
never mention the excdlencies of pro&ssors, will be 

IB Mu$ake$ c$ncemif^ the ^Sbil. %. 

(orw9fd enettgh to publish th^r disgrace. It gratifiit 
tkt Budigoity of thoae who <xily wait for our halting^ 
and occasions a triumph in the enemy's campt ^ ahal 
**dia! so would we have it." 

The inference is ^31 more frequently derived from 
the RioHTEOus THEMSELVES. There are five tUngs 
which will be found to have their influence in produ* 
dng it: the oiscuiiity of the in stations; the 


or TREI& coNTEitsroN J rnn diversity of their 
of^mioNSy and thm imperfectioks of their « 


I. Th« obscurity of the STATIONS lu which mi- 
jhy o^ the righteous are placed, hides them from ob* ' 
aervation. When the rich and the honourable become 
pious, they are not long concealed. A thousand eyes 
are drawu toward th^ elevation; the eminence of 
th^r condition causes theijr virtues to shine like the re- 
flection of the sun from the tops of high mountains^ 
feen by many^ and from alar. They are like a city 
set on a hiU, which cannot be hid. 3ut much more 
religion than is necessary to canonize them, would be 
*ven unobserved among the shades of poverty, and ih 
the common operations of fife, ttere persons have little 
opportunity or ability to display their character ; they 
are often sanctified and removed, unknown to any but 
a few neighbours involved in the same indigence. 
Their excellencies are of the common, sober, unspled- 
did kind ; or if they possess those virtues which distin- 
l^sh and ftrike, they are rendered incapable of exef- 
tising them by their circumstances. Courage demands • 

SfiR. lO Numiir rf the RighlHm. i^ 

dttiger. Where there is no dignity, dute can be no 
toodeicension. Where there are no cfiatindions to 
Axe^ hunaifity cannot shine ; and where there i» 
nothing to give, benevolence cannot a|^ar. God 
indeed << looketh to the heart/' and ^ where tfagerrii 
^ first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what< 
^ a man hath, and not according to what he has not.'' 
In forming bis estimate of the fervices of his people; 
he considers not only wha^ they do, but what they, 
wish to do. He fees many a benefador where tkeie w 
nothing done, many a martyr where thene is notiung^ 
suffered. But we can only know them by ** their 
<^ fruits :'' and their good works, as far as they are 
observable, are few; their principles, however well 
established, are checked and limited, both in their eflbct 
and discovery. Such are God's *^ hidden ones ;•* 
hidden by the obfcurity of their situations, and the 
restrictions of their circumstances ; th^y are candles, 
but candles put under bus^ls. 

The poor are too generally overlooked, whereas by 
christians they should be principally regarded. The. 
dij^enfation of the gospel is peculiarly their privilege ; 
the most extensive provinces of religion are occupied . 
by diem, and were we to open a more familiar inter- 
CQurie with them, it would often rectify our mist2di:es.. . 
AH exertions to render the great rdigious have 
hithttrto -proved ineffectual j and the bible holds forth 
a langi^e, sufficient to fill all those who ^m at their 
conversion with despair. Few comparatively are caHed. 
from the hasher orders of society. He who was poor 
himfdf, whoS^ kingdom is not of,t}^ worlds, and of, 
iHiom it was mA^ ^< have any of the rulers believed on 


14 Mhtakei c$ni^nHng the I^Suu U 

"^ \isA V gentially feiecte bis followers from the lo«r» 
er rvdES of fife ; and there we are to feek them. ^ \ 
^ am left alone I** But perhaps, complaimng prophet^ 
you have been only at court .; walking through palaces 
•r monsiotts ; examining the high places of the earth. 
^ What dost thou here, EKjah ?" Who led thee here 
in fearch of religion ? ^^ Not many wise tnen after 
^^ the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are 
^ caDed.*^ " How can ye believe who receive honour 
^ OBe of another^ and feek not the honour that cometh 
•*• from God only T " How hardly fliall they that 
^ ha^re riches enter inlo the kingdom of heaven ! it is 
^ easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle^ 
^ llian for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of 
^ God.^ The voice of Heaven calls you away from 
the'^ gold ring, and the goodly clothing/' ^^ Hearken^ 
^ my beloved 'brethren, hath not God chosen the poor 
*^ of this world, rich in fiith, and heirs of the kin^lom 
^< which he hath promifed ^» them that love him ?T 
FoHow him. - He will lead you in another direction* 
CvO through yonder viUage ; mingle with the poor and 
needy. Their neces^ties have compelled tiiem to se^ 
Kdief and solace in religion, and they have found them 
there. Enter ths^t cottage : *' the voice of rejoicing 
^*atul of salvation is in tlie tabernacleof the righteous."^ 
^^ Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a 
^ studied ox with hatred and strife/' ^' A little that a 
^ righteous man hath, b better than the riches of many 
^ wicked/' Enter yonder sanctuary : the common 
people hear him gladly. The congregation withdraws. 
Observe diose whq ^proach and assemble around the 
lable .of the Xxurd Ah ! well says Qx>d in the laii- 

Ser. 1*3 NiMber if the R^bumu^ IS^ 

guage of fMTi^liecy, ^^ I will leave in the midst of thee 
<< an ajQicted and poor people, and they shall trwt in 
'* the same of the Locd/' 

IL A TiMiD DISPOSITION conceals many* A bokl 
mind wiU soon obtrude a maa into notice i be wSI 
signalize himself by his ibrwardneis on every occaskm f 
he will be the first to speak, and to act/ Eager to «n« 
gage in every duty and ahrays talking on religiaaf 
^emea, H»ny will remark him as a lively soul, and 
Uj^^' oome^ behold his zeal im the JLord of hosts.'' 

We will not deny that this dispositioo may some* 
times be connected with sincerity : but instances c^ 
«n opposite nature are much morecommon^ and a. 
tpiiid dealing in professions, aind fond of publidty, ifr 
generally, and deservedly to be suspected. It h» 
been justly observed, that when of old the ax^els de* 
soended, they assumed the farm and fikeneis of men $, 
but when Satan appeared, he transformed himself into 
xn angel of %ht. The pretender exceeds the real* 
character J the actor surpasses nature, and goes be^ 
yood life. Whefe a man regards show only, he can 
^ord to b^ move expensivte and magnificent in appesK- 
ances,. thxn tbofe who are concerned for the reality., 
£mpty vessds soimd loudest ^ religion runs along like 
a wx, noiseless in proportion as it b deep. 

Ttue piety aflfects no ^unnecessary exposure ; its 
<W)ice is not heard in the street j it does not found a 
trumpet^before it ; the left hand knoirs not what the 
right han^doeth. It rather eludes pubSic obfervation, 
and retires Icom the a^^ause of the multitude. It 
dots «ot act to bo seen dfmen, or to make afaitftow 



16 Mistakes concerning thf ^Sfi&« !• 

of sanctity. The chrisdan is more concerned to be 
good, than to appear fo. His religion is commonly 
attended with diffidence and self suspicion ; he hides 
his feelings, and makes many anxious inquiries before 
"he can venture to fay, " come unto me, all ye that 
^ fiear God, and I will tell you what he hath done for 
•*my foul." Baxter, speaking of Lord Chief Justice 
Kale, tells us he had once entertained fears left he had 
been too little for the experimental part of religion, 
such as prayer, and meditation, and spiritual war<» 
lEu-e \ becaufe he had seldom mentioned such subjects 
in relation to his own feelings ; but he found after** 
wards that this reluctance arose from his averseness to 
hypocrisy, of which in his day he |ud se^n so many 

. It is our duty to make a profession of religion, and 
uiute ourselves with some body of christians, to walk 
in the £uth and order of the gospel. But we should 
do wrong to condemn all those who decline it. Many 
are held hack for a considerable time by painfbl aq>« 
prehensions, fcalous over theu: own hearts^ and con- 
kerned lest they should be found deceivers, they dare 
not mpe forward, and venture on so serious an act, 
as by a public surrender to join themselves to the 
church of the living God; and it is to be lamented, 
that in m^ny cases this tindity is increased by the 
severe, unscriptural methods of admitting people to 
the table of commumon. In the great day when the 
feqrecsafall hearts are made mwrifest, weftall see ma- 
»y a «tcret, si)oi{t, unobserved foMower of Christ exalted 
at the right hand ; while many a noisy professor of 
rdigion will be thrust down to helL for want of that 

> ^ 

9£R* !•} Numi^er tf the RigbtMU* 1% 

truth and sincerity which are effentially necessary %q 
the christian character, and to gospel worship. 

To this we may add 3iiothef fear. We see it exem- 
plified m NicodemuSj, whp can^ tp Jesus by night 
for fear of the Jews* Hs^d many seen him at the com« 
mencement of his religious course, they would havi^ 
condemned him \ nevertheless he gave at last the 
dearest proof cf his attachment, by coming forward 
when his own disciples fprsook him, and acknowlr 
edging a suffering Redeemer; and there ma^y be 
many in similar circumstances 3 repressed and^cout 
cealed for a time by their situations and connections. 
t do not praise them in this. It is their .duty unques- 
tionably to " go forth to him without the camp bear- 
^ ing his reproach." I only state a fad which has an 
influence on our subjed, 

in* The manner in which some of the people of 

Ood are called by divine grace, renders theip less 

observable. I hope I need not prove, that in order tp 

the existence of genuine religion in the soul, there is 

absolutely qecefiary a change which will embody the 

various representations given of it in the scriptures. 

*^ Except ye be converted, and become as little chil- 

^ dren, ye shall ip no case enter into the kingdom of 

<* heaven.*? "Ye must be bom again.*- ^*If any 

^ man be in Christ, he is a new creature } pld things 

<^ are passed away, and behold all things are become 

<^new«" In such awfiil and decisive terms do the 

pcred p^imien speak of the renovation of our natures, 

as essentia^ to our happiness and our hope ; and this 

^hange in aHi the subjects of divine gr%ce is equally 


1 S Mistakes concerning itte {[Ser^. u 

real, but not equally perceptible, either to themselves 
or others. When a man is suddenly stopped iti hh 
mad career, and turned from a notorious and profli- 
gate course of life ; when the drunkard becomes sober, 
the swearer learns to fear an oath, and the sabbath 
.breaker goes with the multitude to keep holy day ; 
. all must take knowledge of him ^ the effect is striking, 
the world wonders, and the church exdaims, ** who 
."hath begotten me these! these, where had they 
^ been !" But the work is not always so distinguish- 
. able. When the subject of it is moral j bleffed with 
^ pious education j trained up under the means of 
. grace y the change is much less visible. He avoids 
the same vices as before \ performs the same duties as 
before, only from other principles and motives, vrfth 
other views and dispositions ; but these fall not under 
our observation. 

: Many.are too prone to look for a conversion, alwayi 
uniform, not only in its effects, but in its operation, 
and too much bordering on the miraculous. The 
soul must be exceedingly terrified with fear ; then over- 
whelmed with anguifh ; then plunged into despair j 
th^n suddenly filled with hope, and peace, and joy \ 
and the person must be able to determine the day on 
which, and the sermon, or the providence by which 
the change was wrought. But this is by no means 
Iiecess2urily, or generally the case. There is a variety in 
the temperaments and habits of men, and in th< meth- 
ods employed to bring them to repentance. And we 
should remember that these are " differences of ad- 
•* ministration, but the same Lord ;'* that often he 
prefers to the earthquake, the wind and the fire ; the 

Skkh i.^ Number ef the Righteous. !» 

smafl tidit voice ; that he can draw by the cords of love, 
and the bands of a man ; that he can work as effedualfy 
bf slow, as by an instantaneous exertion ; and that he 
vzn change the soul in a maimer so gradual and mild, as scarcely discernible to any, but the glorious Au- 
thor. And here, my brethren, we are furnished with 
evidence from analogy. In nature, some of God*i 
works insensibly issue in others ; and it is impossible 
forus to draw the line of distinctkm. " The path of 
** the just is as the shining liglift, which shincth more 
•* and more unto the perfect day," But who can ascer- 
tain which ray begins, or which ends the dawn ? If 
you are unable to trace the process of the divine life, 
judge by the result. When you perceive the effects 
^ conversion, never question the cause. And if per- 
plexed by a numrbei: of circumstantial inquiries, bb- 
satisfied if you are able to say, *'one thing I know, 
*^ that whereas I was once blind now I fiee." 

IV. The difference of opinion which prevails 
among christians, has frequently occasioned a diminu- 
tion of their number. Indeed the readiest way in th6 
world to thin heaven and replenish the regions of hell, is 
to call in the spirit of bigotry. This will immediately a]> 
raign,.and condemn, and eixecute afi that do not bow 
down and worship the image of oijr idolatry. Possess^- 
ing exclusive prerogative, it rejects every other claim ^ 
^' stand by, I am * sounder* than thou." " The temple 
^^ q£ the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of 
** the, Lord are we !** How many of the dead has this 
intolerai^ce sentenced to eternal misery, who will shine 
foreyer a^ stars in the kingdoip of our Fathejr ? How 

tnany living diaracters does it reprdbite as enemies 10 
the cross of Christy who are placing in it all their ^ory« 
No wonder if under the influence of this conamuag 
aeal, we form lessening vievi*^ of the number of the 
saved. ** I only am left/* Yes, they are few indeed, if 
none belong to them that do not belong to your party ; 
that do not see with your eyes ; that 4o, not bdieve 
selection with you, or universal redemption with ydu f 
that do not worship under a fteeple with you, or in a 
Imeeting with you ; that are not dipped with you, cm: 
sprinkled with you. But hereafter we ihall find that 
the righteous were not so circumscribed, when we shaH 
see, ^^ many coming^from the east, and from the west^ 
^^from the north, and from the south, to sit down, 
^ with Abraham^ Isaac^ and Jacobs in the kingdotai of 
** heaven/* 

Do I plead for an excessive candour I The candouir 
which regards all sentiments alike, and considers nd. 
«rror as destructive, is no virtue* It is the oSpring of 
ignorance, of insensibility, and of cold indiflferenoe. 
The blind do not perceive the difference of colours $ 
the dead never dispute ; ice, as it tongeab, aggre^gates 
all bodies within its reach^ however jieterogoieout 
their quality. Every virtue Has certain ixninds, and'. 
when it exceeds them, it becomes a vice ; for the last : 
stepof avirtue, and the first step of a Vice, are^contiguousi^ * 

But surdy it is no wildnessof candour, that leads uk 
to give the Uborty we take; that silffi^rs a saan to tUnk 
for himself unawed; and that condudes he may be t 
follower of God, though he follow not with us; "Why 
should we hesitate to con»der a man a diristian, when 
we see liim abhorring and forsaking sin ; liungerinj^ ' 

SlHiu l3 thmAertf the ibglftttiuh tl 

and tUndng aft#r righteousness ; dSigent in approadi- 
igg unto God ; walking f ^ in newness of life ;" and 
ifiscovering a spiritnality df tettiper, a disposition lot 
devotion, n deadii<ess to the world, a benevolence, a 
liberality, such as we seldom find in thofe high toned 
doctrinaiiists, who regard themselves as the only advo- 
cates for free grace? Ami by the way, it is not a 
system of notions, however good, or a judgment in di- 
-^ne things, however dear, that wiH constitute a chrift- 
tkn. It is II transformation by the renewing of the* 
fliind ; it is a putting ^ oS the old man with his deeds^ 
'^and putting on the new mto, which after God it 
V created in righteousness and true holiness;*' it is 
walking, ^ even to he walked/'-^*' If any man have 
^ not the ^irit of Christ, he is none of his.** 

And to pass to tfa^ opposite side, we should also re- 
member, that men do not ahvays live according to the 
natural tendency and consequences of their creed. 
6ome hold sentiments very injurious to holiness, who 
An not wicked men; their hearts are better than 
tiiek c^iinions ; their prindples give their consdendes 
a fiberty to sk^ whidi they refuse to take ; and their 
ipractke is adorned with good works, which their syi* 
t&ak by no meam requires. No one cm imagine that 
I mention this with a view to eountenance, or palliate 
the adoption of *sudi sentiments. They blaspheme eve- 
xy Uae in tbe biUe, and .kre always injurious in a de** 
gree v but where they happen to fall in with a love of 
wHf the eiSfect is dreadful; where mch z pcM»onous 
infusion is imbibed, and not counto'acted by a «nga- 
lar poiifencyof constitution, the cooeequence is eatW9 

2S Mistakes concerning the fScR* ^ 

^iKALLTj many are excluded from tfie number 
of the righteous by practical imperfections..— • 
There is a blemish in every duty, a deficiency in every 
grace, a mixture in every character ; and if none are 
to be considered as the people of God, who are not 
free from infirmity, you will easily be induced to take 
Vp the language, ^* { am left alone ;" for who i:an say^ 
*^ I have made my heart dean, I am pure from my 
** sin j" ^* I have attained, I aim already perfect." The 
best of men are but men at the best* *^ I am left alone.** 
Nay, Elijah, yoo are not left. Even yqu are " a man 
*^ of like passions as we are." With aH your miriaculous 
endowments, and religious attainments, you discovered 
the same natural feelings, the same moral defects. Tou 
feared Jezebel, fled dismayed from your work, impa- 
tiently demanded to die, and drew a very erroneous 
and unworthy conclusion respecting the true worship- 
pers of God. Yea, there never was one left ; for 
to which of the saints will yon turn ? To Abraham i 
he denies his wife in Gerar. To Moses? he spake 
^< unadvisably with his lips.^ To Job ? he curses the 
day of his birtli. To Peter f he abjures his Lord. I 
know I tread on dangerous ground. The Antinomian 
•drunkard may call in Noah as his companion; and 
the unclean^ who turn the grace of God into lascivious- 
ness, may plead tlie example of David's adultery. 
They may hope where they should fearj take for . 

encouragement what was only given for caution } and 
refemble those in their fall, whose repentance tfiey will 
tiever imitate. And ^^ thinkeft thou, O man, who 
^^^<loeft fuch things, to efcape the judgment of God ?^ 
Inftead Qf raifing thee up like thefe good men, as a I 

j^EBr &) Nfunber rf tie RjgStemts. f $ 

fAonpfliefiC of merqr to future generations, he will 
harden thee, into a pillar of fait. 

. God forbid we flumld plead for fin^ but let us- 
not ihun to declare a truth, for fear of a poffiUe 
abufe of it. Severe io jud^ng ourfelves,. let us eq* 
deavour to ju<^e favourably of others, and place before 
our minds every confideration tending to aid that 
charity which. ^^ thinketh no evil^ believing all things, 
*^ hoping all things,, eqduring all things.''-***-^ 

-^That we are to learn of One, who will not break 
a bruiied reed, or quench the smoaking flax, till he 
bring forth judgment unto victory.— That there is a 
day of small things, which we are not to defpife. That 
grace corrects, but does not eradicate nature ^ fubdaes,^ 
but does not extinguiih the paffions ; forms us^ chris« 
tidns, bi^t leaves us men*— ^That there are inequalities 
among the righteous ; that the good ground yielded 
in varied proportions, fome a hundred fold, fome 
fixty, fome thirty. — ^That a prevailing holy difpofition 
may have exceptions, and that a fingle action is not to 
pleaded againft a long continued practice.— That 
perfons who would abandon an unlawful purfuit, the 
moment they were convinced of its impropriety, may 
contir#ue in it for a time, for want of knowledge or 
Reflection.— That as we entertain a confidence in our 
own falvation, though confcious of numberleis im* 
perfections, we (hould not require perfedion of others. 
—That our failures, though not as grols, may be as 
guilty as thofe of our brethrea ;— and, that we may 
fprnetimes entertain a hope which we are afraid to 
publifh, and. believe that fome are in the way to hea- 
ven, whofe fqjTe arrival th^re, we truft,' will never be 
known in this world. 



S4 BBsUJtes eoncetrung ibe [Sbr* z^ 

My tirediren, in our ^pltcsdon of this fiibjed:, iM 
us FIRST remark the ufe the apoftle makes of it: 
^ Ewn fi> then at thk prefent time alfo there is a rem*, 
^-mmt according to the election of grace/' God 
never leaves himfebf without witnds« He has always 
inftrumenta to carry on his caufe, zx^A a people to 
§iow forth his praife. Thefe 2ire the pillars of a 
ftate to keep it from falling } the £d[t of the earth to 
preferve it from corruption ; the light of the world to 
iecore it from darkne& ; and a|s Efaias faid before^ 
^«sx:ept the Lord of Sabbaoth had left us a seed^ 
^ we had been as Sodom, and been made like unto 
^Gomorrah/'. Relinquiih diminifhing ideas of the 
divine goodnefs ^ ^^ his mercies are over all his works*'' 
Look back to Calvary, aqd fee Jefus bearing the 
fins of MANY ; fee him riling from the dead to receive 
f^the heathen for his inheritance, 2^id the uttermoft 
^ parts of the earth for his po&fflon." *^ The pleafure 
<^ of the Lord fhall profper in his hand ;" *^ he ihall 
^ fee of the travail of his fouL and ihall be fatisfied.'^ 
Look forward, 2^nd behold ^' a great multitude which 
^^ no man can number, of all ;iations, and kindreds^ 
^ and people, and tongues." Behqld even now 
^^ the Cstptain of your falvation bringing many fons 
" tmto glory,"* and no longer imagine there is any 
danger of your being **left alone.** Rejoice, ye 
friends and followers of the Lamb ; you belong to 
no small family ; you do not approach the throne of 
grace alone; you are not alone in your hopes and 
your pleafures, or your finales, groans, and tears* 
Far more than you have apprehended are on *'the 
♦•Lord's fide,*' attache4 to the fame Saviour, travel- 

Sbr, 1 .3 Number ofsbt Rigbfeous. SS 

ijng the same road, heirs of the same " grace of .etcr- 
"nailife/' ' ^ 

Secondly, are you of the number ? For; my dcjir 
hearers, it is of little importance for yoii to know that 
many will enter in, if you are excluded: " there shall. 
•* be weeping smd gnsLshing of teeth, wheii ye shall see 
*^ Abraham, and Isaac, 4nd Jacob, and all the prophets 
** in the Idogdom of God, and you yourselves thrust 
*^ out." As you all hope td escape this dreadful doom, 
it behoves yoti to examine tvhether your confidence 
be well founded, and whether^ living as you live, the .^^ 
scripture justifies yout hope of heaven. Who- then -'' 
you ask, win be saved ? Those who live in the world;* 
and not like it ; .thofe who ^ have no £dlowship with; 
^* the unfruitful works of darkoessj but rather reprove. 
^ them i*' those who are *^^ 4 peculiar peo[de, zeaU 
^ ous of good works/* It ' is the character here given 
them : ^ I - have resery!|^|o myself seven thousand 
^* men, who have not bowed thz xnek to- th§ 
** IMAGE OP mjalJ* And this: was the reigning sin ; 
the court, the. cityj the country, all followed Baal ; . • 
his worfhip was univerfal. My brethren, the beft 
evidence you can give of your integrity, is freedom . 
from the prevailing, fafhionable vices and follies of 
the times and places iq which you live* A dead fish 
can swim with the stream, but a live pne only can . 
swim against it. The influence of oj\e man over 
another, is truly wonderful. ' The individual is up- -» 
right ; his connections give him all his wrong bias* 
Alone, he forms good resolutions ; when he enlierf 
the world they are broken, ** like as a thread of tow 

** is broken when it tougheth the fire." It is nof 


is A^ takes concerning the ^Ser. I* 

^norance, but a cowardly shame-, that keeps many in 
a state of indecision, ** halting between two opinions.*' 
They know what is right, and woul<| gladly partake 
of the believer's safety j but they have not fordtude 
enough fio encounter the reproach, which in one form 
or another^ always attends an adherence to the cause 
of JesUlft Christ* Others, who had made some pleasing 
|>rogress, have been easily deprived by a laugh, or a 
sneer, of all their religion. Not to ** bow the knee to 
** Baal,'' when all adore him ;* to step forth with our 
» .fcmily behind us, and say to our neighbours, and our 

^relations, " choose you this day whom you will serve^ 
<« but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord ;** 
^o withstand in a pious cause, the influence of ex- 
ample; to keep our way when we see an adverse 
multitude approaching us ; to pass through the midst> 
tmshrinking as we feel the scourge of the tongue^ 
"^B is no easy thing ; this is- principle in triumph ; 
ftd this christian herdism is not only commendable, 
but necessary. Do not say, therefore, if we do this, we 

" • shall be singular. If you are christians, you must be 
singular ; it is the grand design, the unavoidable con- 
sequence of the gospel. Read the character of its 
followers: "Ye are not of the world, even as I am 
^ not of the world." Examine its commands ; ** Be 
•* not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed 
**by the renewing of the mind." Weigh tl\e condition 

% df its digirities and privileges : " Come ye out from 
* among tkem, and be ye separate, and touch not the 
^ Uttdean thing ; and I vrill receive you, and be a father 
^ unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, 
''ssath dti Lord almighty.*'- My dear hearers, die 


♦ IN 


Sbr. 1#3 Number ^ the Rigbteoitt. 27 

hng^uage is too plain to be misunderftood ; the meaning 
tooawfnl to be trifled with. Decide, and decide iin«> 
mediately. " Withdraw yourselves from these men/' 
before a common perdition involves you all. If with 
them you will sin^ with them you must suffer. They 
who followed the multitude rather than Noah, were 
drowned in the flood. They who followed the multi* 
tude rather than Lot, were destroyed in the cities of 
the plain* They who followed the multitude rather 
than Joshua and Caleb, perished in the wilderness ; 
and as it was then, so it is now ; '^ as for such as turn 
^ aside to their crooked ways, the Lord will lead them 
** fiprth WITH the workers of iniquity." 

Thirdly, Let those who have been " reserved,' 
consider the Author and the End of their distinction. 
Remember by whom you have been secured ; God i» 
the author ; hence he says, " I have reserved.** " For 
^* who maketh thee to differ from another, and what faast 
^^ thou that thou didst not receive V* Had you been left 
to yourselves, and " given up to your own counsel^'' 
you would have been carried along by the same evil 
tendency " in the course of this world." But his 
grace, equally free and powerful, interposed in yoyf 
favour ; it gave to^ordinances their efficacy, and to 
the dispensations of Providence their sanctifying^ iqfiu» 
ea^e in turning the mind, and restraining the life from- 
sin; and boasting eupduded, you are indulging your«^ 
selves in language used by all the redeemed before 
you — ^' not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto 
" thy name be. glory, for thy mercy, and for thy ttuth*» 
** sake :" " by the grace of God I am what I am : not 
^ Ii but ti^Q graoq of God which was with me." Re-> 



88 Mistakes concerning tbe^ &c. [^£li. t« 

tnenlber also for whom you have been secured. God 
is the end ; hence he Says, " I have i::eserved unto 
^* MYSELF ;'' *' they are to be my reprefentatives on 
f* earth, to wear my image, to maintain my caufe, to be 
V employed in my service." " This people have I 
formed for myfelf, they Ihall fhew forth my praife/' 
They {hall be called trees of righteoujfiieis, the 

planting of the Lord, that he may be^loiified." 

The Lord hath fet apart him that is godly for him- 
** self.'* • Chriftians ; it is an high, an a^^Ril deftiny. 
It iheds a iacrednefe over the whole charafter, which 


you ihould always feel. It haUows you. It confecrates 
your perfons and your poffeflions. All you liave, all 
you are, is his ; and ^ i^ fOR him* This end deter- 
piines, and Amplifies your work ; to this you are 
to make every thing Subordinate and fub&rvient. 
" Whether, therefore, ye eat or drink, at whatever ye 
f * do, do all to the glory of God*" •* For none 6f 

*' us LIVETH to himself, AND NO MAN DIETH TO 

" TO THE Lord, or whether we die we die uwto 

» • 

*^ THE Lord ; whether therefore we live or 
^lE, WE are the Lord's. 

jf • •• '^ 



if lP- ' ' ■ ^ ■- . y j r . *T '^'^^^^^^*'^^T^^< '- '^ "" ' "-'■T^s^^ps''^^^^^^^ 





Rev. xiv, 12. 

ifei?£ /S tiU fATIRVCB OF SAIStS. 

J)ID youeter ojbferve my dear brethren, 
the exclamation of David ? ^ ^/Iztk the perfeA map, 
^* and behold the upright, for the. end of that man is 
peace/^ A religious character is an objed: truly 
wonderfol and interefting ; there is fomething in 4iim 
worthy of peculiar notice and regard. David indeed 
fixes the mind on one article only, and calls upon Us 
to confider his *^ end ;"* but his way is as remarkable 
as his end ; his life is as deferving of attention as his 
death ; and it is pleafing and ufeful to obferve him in 
every relation, to purine him through every condition, 
and to admire thofe excellencies which unfold them, 
felves, and operate as proofs of his origin, and pledget 
of the " glojy, and honour, and immortality," to 
which it tends. 

Hence we endeavour to excite you to contemplate 
succeffively his various features. Sometimes we have 
placed him before you as convinced of fin. At 
Other times aa cxercifing fcith on obf Lord Jefus 

so The Triwn^s af PatUtice. ^Ser. lu 

CImft. Yoa have lately seen liim ^ rejoicing in the 
^hope of hi3 calling." This morning he appears 
among hb ^ bre^ren and companions in tribulation/' 
diftingui&ed by the pofleifion and triumphs of patience* 
'^Here is the patience of the saints." We fliall^ 

I. Delineate the character of saints. 

II. Explain the connection th£R|£ is between 


nL And specify $oms cases in which their pa- 
tience IS to be rendered ILLtrSTRIOUS, so AS TO 

Part L Ood has always % people fat his name % 
he owns th^n to be saints ; and they are often foun4 
where we should little expeift to find them. Thus we' 
read of saints at Corinth, of saints at Ephesus, of sainty 
at Rome, and of saints even ^^ in Csssar's household.'* 

The title is applied 1:0 persons, because they are 
ifOLY QNis ; and such are all real christians, though 
encompassed with infirmities ; as a child full of weak^ 
ness is human, having the nature, though not the 
stature of a man. They are called holy £Dr two rea- 

The first is taken froin their dedication to ood. 
Thus the temple was holy ; the vessels of the sanftu- 
ary were holy j the first fruits were holy ; the sacri-^ 
fices were holy. Hence christians are called the 
temple of God, vessels of honour, the first fruits of 
every creature, " a sacrifice holy and acceptable." 
** The Lord hath set apart him that is godly for 
^^ Mmself.'' He is sacred to the divbe service and honour \ 

&tR. 11.3 TU Triimfbt (f Fatietue. Stl 

and if he takes his taleats, and nfes them £ot any other 
pprpofe, he is guilty of facrilege. 

the fecdnd is derived from their MusoNAt reko- 
vation. The inftrumeivts tmder the law were only 
holy by appropriation } no change pafled upon them j; 
no change was neceflary. It is otherwise with m ; for 
fince God finds \is in a state whdly unfuited to his^ 
fervice, we ranft be ^^ made meet for the great MafbrV 
^ u(e»^' Hence regeneration is neceflary, by which wa 
ace ^ renewed in the fyirit of onr minds,^' and ^ made 
^ partsdsers of the divine nature.'' God may call an 
angel into his pre(ence» and immediately employ him 
wkbcmt a change; he will love the command, and be 
equal to the work. But does he determine to emptoy in 
his^ fervice an unregenetat^ finner ? He is unqualiied i 
he has neither ability nw inclination ^ and is deftitute!' 
of the fpiritusJ||y which the work c^ God requires^ 
Hence the promife, *' a new heairt alfo will I ^ve you, 
^^ and a new i^irit w31 1 put within you ; and I will take 
^ away the ftony heart out of yotir fle(h, and I will give 
*' you an heart of fleih. itnd I will piit my Spirit within 
^ you, and c^ufb you to walk in my fiatutes, and ye 
^£ball keep my judgments, and do them.'' And 
with this agrees the declaration of the apofile^ 
we are his workmanihip, created in Chrift Jefus 
unto good works, which God has before ordained 
^' that we fhould walk in them." View him then aa 
he corner from th$ hand^ of his new Creator. There 
is nothing \jy which he is fo much diftinguilhed, as an 
Uinconquerable .concern for holinefs, . What does he 
Ipye ?-7.«* I delight in the law of God, after the inner 
"man." What is his grief?— *«0 wretched man 

83 ' The Triwnphs of Paiience: [Ser. li 

^^ that I am ! who fhall deliver me from the body of this 
^ death ?*' What is his prayer ? — ^^ Create in me a dean 
*' heart) O God, and. renew a right fpirit within me.'* 
What is his hope ?^— That he " Ihall be like Him, and 
^^ fee Him as he is : and having this hope in him, he 
" purifieth himfclf, even as He is pure." Holinefi is 
the gofpel embodied. The {aint Exhibits it alive. 
Tlie gofpel is holy; its. Author holyj its maxims 
and its commands holy > its promifes, ordinances, de- 
figns holy j and there is nothing by which it is fo 
much difiinguifhed and glorified, as the holinefs which 
pervades it. My brethren, contemplate the fubject 
in this light niore frequently, and do. not include every 
thing elfe, rather than this in your notion of the gofpel. 
Do not imagine with fome, that it was defigned to 
fiirniih a fubftitute for holinefs ; and that it will excufe 
your being holy, provided you are found. The grand 
thing it is intended to teach you is, "that denying all 
" ungodline& and worldly luft, you fhould live foberly, 
" righteeufly, and godly in this prefent world.** And 
remember this important truth, that chriftians are 
called by the gofpel to be faints ; that you are cRrif- 
tians only in proportion as you are faints ; and that 
you are no furtlier faints than you are " holy in all 
" manner of converfation and godlinefe." We pro- 
ceed to reflect. 

Part. XL On the conxj^ec tion there is b^- 


^NLY hate patience. " For the Lord feeth not as 
••*man ieeth : for manJooketh on the outward appear- 
** ance, but the Lord looketh on the heart." In his 

9b^ fuj TbeTrkimphif FaHemek ^ 

f^snadoft^ prind{^ and motive are dfendal to the 
goodnefs of action. A thing may be materially good, 
when it is not morally lb. A man may give ^all hi$ 
•* goods to feed the poor^ and not hs^ve charity;!* 
while a pow widow is held up aS: suit example of be« 
nevolence, though fflie cafts into the treafury but two 
mites» If a law were enacted againft loipiry and ex- 
travagance, a co^setbus would be very obedient y 
but let his avarice, and uoi the hrw, have ^e hohouc 
of hk obedience^ Apply this tt> the cafe before us. 
A man may endure, and xiot be patient; there may 
be4io religious principle or inotive to inftuence him ; 
it may be a carelej(& indolence^ a (tupid infenfibifity i 
mechanical bravery ; conflitutional fortitude ; a (far- 
ing ftoutnels of fpirit, refulting from fatsdifmi philofo- 
phy, or pride. ChriftisMs patience is another thing ; it 
is derived from a divine slge^cy, uourifhed by heavenly 
truth, and guided by fcrtptural rules. Sudi is the 
patience of which we are i^peakhig; and as this is 
PKLT tQ be foui^d in the ful^ects of true holiae69 fq 
we may ohferve^ 

Secondly, 4 very faint pofleffias patience; not 
indeed in equal degrees, *^ for one fiar differeth from 
f^anothei^ ftar in glory." But all are fiars. All aret 
endued with this virtue. It is one of the fruits of the 
Spirit; it is 4n eflential part of the divine image 
reftored in man. The work of Go4 ip the foul is not 
}ike ^ piece of ftatuary, where one part is finiihed while 
the refl: remains in block; but it is a creation, and 
imperceptible as the beginning may be, there are 
found all the parts wttch increaied and developed, pro* 
4Hce, amd ^play the maturity ; all ts a4fan(pe4 


*ft The Tmn^bs tf Pa^ence. [Ser.. ir.. 

toother; sind all is perfect as fkr as the c^ration pro^ 
(;eeds. A chriftian may be defective in his organs. o£ 
yifion ; but who would draw him without eyes ? Wha 
would defcribe a faint without patience? I wiih this ta 
be remembered the more, becai^ie there' are fo many 
evangelical profeiTors in our day, awfully deficient in 
this inftance. Their religion has very lltde to do with 
their difpofitions. They think it neceflary £3r the 
judgment to be informed, and thje pradice to be 
moral ^ but from one of thefe to the other, religion 
is to pa^ without touching the temper, which Uqs 
between. If they are converted, it feems to. bo 
from that which is human, to that which is diabolical* 
They are accufers of the brethrea, proud, felf willed, 
^rce, revengeful. Saints in the houfe of God, they 
ajre demons at home» Every trifle makes them ex-> 
piode. How the religion of the meek and lowly Jefus 
can live with them, it v? impoflible to determine j wq 
know nothing elfe can. 

Thirdly, it highi-v becomes faints to cultivate 
patience " The ornament of a meek and quiet fpir- 
" it is in the fight of God of great price." It enno- 
bles the poffeffor* Some have obtained honour by 
doing mischief. It has been faid by a modern prelate, 
^^ one murder makes a villain, a thoufand a hero.** 
.The chriftian conquerer draws his glory, not from the 
fufierings of others, but from his own. And nothing 
renders his character more impreilive and ui/efiit; )t 
re(toramends his religion ; it carries along with it a pe- 
culiar conviction. When a chriftian has met with an 
affliction, that has led him in from the duties <rf his 
calling, deprived him of opportunities of exertion, an,d 

5cR. ii."] TbeTriumpbs of Patienct. *8S 

trobfined him to the houfe of grief; little has he Vap- 
pc^ed, that he was approaching the moft ufeful peri- 
od of his life. But this has often been the cafe ; and 
Tie has rendered more fervice to religion by fufFering^ 
than by. doing. O, what a theatre of ufefiilnefs is even 
a " bed of languiftiihg?' " We are a fpeftacte to 
"angels/* as well as ''^to the world, .and to men."^^ 
The ftlflFerer lies open to their infpedion j and the 
view of him, enduring, fuftained, glorying in tribula- 
tion, draws forth frefh acclamations of 4)nirfe to that 
God, whdfe grace can produce fuch wonderfttl effefts : 
" Here is the patience df the iaints." But all his fel- 
low creatures are not excluded ; there is generally a 
circle of rdations, friends, ;n^igTibours, who are wit- 
netfes df the fcene. 1 appe^ to your* feelings. When 
you have feen a chriftian fuffering in charafter, with 
all the compofure and majefty of fubraiffion ; when 
you have heard him foftly faying, " though I mburn., 
I do not murmur ; why fhould a living man com- 
plain ?" " it is the Lord, let him do what feemeth 
him good;*' "his ways are judgment;" "he hath 
" done all things w^ ;** "I fee a little of his perfec- 
"^^ tion, and *dore the reft," has not a voice addrefled 

Now see' the nmn^lipiiiortal ; him \ mean 
Who 'lives as such ; vhote heart full bent on heavep 
Leans all that way.; his tnas to the stars. 
The world's dark shades in contrast set shall raise 
His lustre more ; tho bright without a foil : 
Observe his awfal portrait and admire, 
Nor stop at wonder, imitate, aixl love.—— "" 

Have you not turned afide, and exclaimed, Whatae 

S46 The Triumpbi (f Patience. [Sbr* it 

efficacf, what a{i excellency in the religion Df Jefns \ 
^Here id the patience of the iiunt^ !*' This bring U8| 

Part IH. To ipec^ bomb cases iii which the pa- 
tience of the £dnt8 is to be rendered iixostrious an4 
vrRiRiKG. We ihall mention three. The firft con- 
cerns PRortrpcATxoK; the ieoond AVPLicTioK ; the 

tjiird TOSLklix hac^ pad^ice is xiecefiaiy ; »oii here we 
are to behold its triumphs* 

: Fiilfty it is to be dii^^iiyad in bearii^ provocatiqm% 
^It muft needs be ^at oflfences will cooie/' Our 
opinions^ reputations, connexions, offices, bufioefles^ 
render as widely vulnerable. The charaders of men 
are various ; their purfuits and their interefts perpetu* 
ally daih. Some try us by thdr igncnrance, fome by 
their folly, fome by their perverfeneis, fome by their 
malice. There are to be found perfons made up of ev« 
eary thing difagreeable md miichietvous^ bora only t^ 
yez, a burden to themfelvet^ and a torment to att 
around them, tiere is to opportunity for the trhampb 
of patience ; here, is a theatre on which a man may exr 
hibit his charader, and ^>pe9k' k fretful, wafpifli rep- 
tile, or a placid, pardoning Crod. We are very fu£> 
ceptive of irritation^ 2uig^ is eloquent; revenge i^ 
fweet. But to dftand calm, ^d colle^ed ; to fufpend 
the blow, which paiSon ^tra^'vrgedt to ilrike } to drive 
the reaibns of clemency as far as they will go ; to 
bring forward fairly in vieS^ the circumftances of mit- 
%ation ; to diftinguifh between furprife and delibera- 
^on, infirmity and crime; .or if an inflidion be deem- 
iod neceflary, to leave God to be both the judge and 
the executioner — This a chriftian fhould labor after. 

ISs peace requires it. People love to fting the paf* 

r ■ 

%osa$fi. They vrhot are eafily pwvolied, cowumt tliek 
Twpf^tQ th^ kee^ng of tbi^ en^ooies ; they lie damn 
0t their ieet, and inTke them to firike* The man of * 
temper ^places himself b^ond vexatious interruption 
and infttlt. ^ He that h^ no rule over his own %ir^ 
^it, is ISsje a dty that is broken down and without 
^ walk,*' into which eanljer cnrer the mios, toads, £»- 
pents, vagrants, iluieves, efieaciies ; while the man, vAm 
in patience poflefles Us foul, has the oMomand of him<- 
fdfj places a defence all around hun, add forbids the 
^ntranqe of such unwelcome ijomqpany so cfiead or dif- 

His %ii3om requires it. ^ fie that is dow to anger 
^is of great iinderftandiDg ; but he that is hafty 6f 
««^fpirit ex!alteth folly-*' ** Anger refieth in the bofom 
^* of fools." Wifilom gives us l^ge, various, tximpre- 
heniive failing round views of things ; the very exer- 
x£fe operates as a i^erfion, kBbrds the mind time to 
cool, and furnifhes liunbedefs drcumfiances ten^^ 
to foften feverity* Such -is the meeknefi of wi^om'. 
Hius candour is the ofispr^g of knowledge. 

IBs dignity requires it. ^ It is the glory rf a man 
** to pafs by a tran^efion.^' " Be not ov^come of 
^ evil, but overcome evil with good." The man pro- 
voked to revenge, is conquered, and lofes the glory 
of the ftruggle $ while he who forbears, comes off a 
viftor, crowned with no common laurels j for, **1ie 
^^ that is slow to anger is better than the mighty : and 
^^ he that ruleth hb fpirit, than he that taketh a city.** 
A flood aflails a rock, and rolls off, unable to make 
an impreifion ; while ftraws and boughs are borne off 
in triumph, carried down the ftream, "driven wfth 
« the wind, and tofled.^ . . 

:S8 5n6<f Triumphs of Patience. . TSkr: ^ 

It is alfo required by examples the moft worthy cJ 
-ortr imitation. ' What provocations had Jofeph receiv* 
«d from his brethren ! but he fcarcely mentions the 
crime, fo eager is he to announce the pardon ; ** and 
^ he faid, 1 am Jofeph your brother, whom ye fold in- 
^* to Egfypt : now therefore be not grieved, nor angry 
** with yourfdves that ye fold me hither ; for God did 
** fend me before you to preferve life/' " Hear David? 
*' they rewarded me evil for good, to the fpoiling of 
my fdtd* But as for me, when they were iick my 
cIotHing was fackdoth : I humbled my foul with 
fafting, and my prayer returned into my own bof ' 
^^ om. ' I behaved myfcdf as though he had been my 
*• friend or brother : I bowed down heavily, as one 
"that mourneth for his mother!"* View Stephen, 
dying under a ihower of flones ; he more than par- 
•dons ; he prays; he is more concerned for his ene« 
iBies, than for himfelf } in praying for himfelf, he 
ilbbd'; in praying for his enemies, he kneeled : he 
kneieled and £ud, "Lord lay not this fin to their 
" charge/' A greater than Jofeph, a greater than 
David, a greater than Stephen, is hece» H£ endured 
■every kind of infult ; but ** when he was reviled, he 
reviled not agadn : when he fuSered, he threatened 
not ; but committed himfelf to Him that judgeth 
righteously.*' Go to the foot of the crofs, and be- 
Jiold him fuffering for u^, "leaving us ^n example 
^\ that we ihould follow his fteps/* Every thing con- 
'finred to render the provocation heinous ; the nature 
x)f the offence, the meannefs and obligations of the 
'.offenders, the righteousnefs of his caufe, the grandeut 
^f his perfon ; all thefe feemed to call for vengeance. 

5*». irj TU Triumphs (if Fatiifrur. i^ 

^he creatures are eager to punHh. Peter dre\r ha 
sword. The sxrn resolved to ihine on such crusfiiaak 
op longer. The rocks aiked leave to crufh them.^ 
The earth trembles under the sinful load. The very. 
^ea4 cannot remain in their {^aves. He su&rs thent 
an to teilify their sympathy, but forbids their revenge^ 
a^d left the Judge o£ all ihould pour foi^th his fury, 
he inftantly <;ries> *' Father, forgive them, for they 
*' knaw not what they do." " Here is the patience 
« of' a God. 

, Secondly, Patience is to be displajred in suskuun^ 
4§£ucrjoN. ^^ Man is born to trouble,, as the sparks 
«< fty upward \^* and so far are the saints from being 
SS^empted, that we are informed ^^ many are the af- 
iiaions of the righteous." Bvt we ihall not def- 
qribe them, ; we have only to enquire after the tem-r 
per with which they are to be bore^ It is not neces* 
saury to- be insenfible ; there ia no virtue in bearing 
what we do not feel y grace takes away the heart of 
s^one, and patience does not bring it back. You may 
desire deliverance ; but these desires will not be r^fh^ 
iasifting^ unconditional y but always closed with *' nev- 
ertheless, not ^ I will, but as thou wilt." Yo\^ 
may employ means to obtain freedom } but thesQ 
means wiU be lawful ones. A suffering christian may 
see several ways qi release, but he seeks only God's 
way. ^^ He who confined me Ihall brixjig me forth ^ 
^ here will I stand still to see the salvation of the Lord, 
** which H5 will shew me." He would rather endure 
^he greatest calamity, than commit the least sin ; and 
wh]^ the affliction remains, there is na.rebellious car- 
.l?)^g^x9pfQ9miQg expres^onsy 90 hard thoughts of 

40 Tb^Trkm^is of Fati^nce^ [Se9^ m^ 

, God» no (Aargmg him foolislily/ He calmly acquis 
caees in a condition^ of the ^Baadvantages of which lie 
is foUy sensible. Hi& patience keeps him in the me^ 
nm between presumption and de^jxmr ;; between de». 
^sing <^ the chaftening of the I^rd» s|Qd £untisg when 
^ rebuked of hiiQ ;" between feeling too Uttle and toof 
much. Here then is another field, in which patience 
may gather glory* Affl^ost comes to exercise and 
Uluftrate our patience. *^The tria^ of your faith 
^ worketh patience ;'' ^nd it do^ fio in consequence 
of the (fivine blessing, and by the natural operation of 
things ; for use maizes perfef^ the yoke is rendeied 
ea^ by being worn^ and those parts c^ the body which 
are most in a£tion» are the most strong and solids 
And therefore you are not to es^cuse improper diq>o^ 
sitions imder afflidtion, by saying, ^^ it was so trying, 
^ who could help it :'' this is to justly impatiepce, by 
the very means which God employs on purpose to 
nlake you patient. Be "assured the 6iult is not in the 
condition, but in the temper. Labour therefore tp 
difplay this grace in whatever ftate you are, and how* 
ever afflifted you may be. Impatience turns the rod 
into a fcorpion. Till you wipe your eyes from this 
fuffufion of tears, you canqpt fee what Qod is doing } 
and while the noify paQons are fo clamorous, hb a^? 
drefs cannot be heard, Suppofe you were lying on a 
bed of pain, or walking in the field under fome heavy 
affi^on ; fi^ppoTe yoi; were alone there, and heard % 
voice which you knew to ht the voice of Ood— ^Do 
«noe imagine your cafe is finguhr; there has been 
'^ Ibrrow like unto thy forrow* Take the propheA, 
<« who have ^xiken in tl^e naii|e oftke I^ord^ fat an 

the Triumphs of Patience. 


« example of fuffcring affliAion, and of patience. 
« Y(m have heard of the patience of Job. He was 
« ftripped of all, and he (aid, the Lord gave, and the 
« Lord hath taken away, and bleffed be the name of 
«< the Lord : what ! Ihall we receive good at the Lord's 
« hands, and fliall we not receive evil ? Confider the 
" unparaMed fufferings of thy Saviour : and he faid, 
« the cup which tny Father giveth me to drink, fhall 
" I hot drink it ? Do not imagine thefe trials are 
«* fruits of my difpleafure : as many as I love, I rebuke 
** and chaften. I defign thy welfare ; and I know 
' ** how to advance it. You have often been mifiaken ; 
** fometimes you have been led to deprecate events, 
" which you now fee to have been peculiar mercies^ 
" Truft me in this difpenfation : reafons forbid my 
•* explaining things fully at prefent : what I do, thou 
" knoweft not now, but thou flialt know hereafter. 
^^ Id the mean time be aiTured, I do not afflict willingly 
*^ nor grieve the children of men. Thefe troubles are 
« as neceflary for thy foul, as medicine for the body, 
^ as the furnace for gold, as the knife for the vine* 
'^ Be not afraid of the afflidion ; I have it completely 
*^ under my imanagement ; when the end is anfvi^red 
*' I will remove it ; I know ^ow to deliver. l^Hl then, 
*'iear not, for I am with thee ; be not difmayed, for I 
'^ am thy God : I will firengthen thee^ yea I will keep 
<^ Ihe^ yea I wfli uphold thee with the right hand 
**^ of my righteouij9e{s.*'~-~0, could I hear this ; this 
would huflx each rebellious %h, dieck <very murmur- 
ing thought, is fhis thon fuppofition ? has nat God 
tUs ; does he:not fay all this in bis wcHrd? 

TlllFdly, Patience is to \^ exerdfed under delats. 

F * 


42 The Trimphs of Patience. []Skr. n» 

We as naturally purfue a desired good, as We Ihun an 
apprehended evil. The want of luch agoodiiasgriev- 
ous as the preffure of fuch an evil; and an ability to 
bear the one is as needful a qualification, as the forti- 
tude by which we endure the other. It therefore as 
much belongs to palience, to wait, as to fuffer. ' We 
read of " the patience of hope :" for patience will be 
rendered neceffary according to the degree of hope. 
" Hope deferred niaketh the heart fick :" it ft thi of- 
fice of patience to prevent this feinting. And God is 
perpetually calling for the exercife of It. He does not 
always immediately indulge you with an anfww to 
prayer. He hears indeed as foon a$ you knock, but 
he does not inftantly open the.dbor: to ftand there 
refolved not to go without a blefllng, requires patience, 
and patience comes up and cries,' " wait on the Lotd ; 
*' be of good courage, anii he fhall ftrengthen thine 
" heart ; wait I fay on the Lord." He does not ap- 
pear to deliver us according to the time of our expec- 
tation ; and in woe we number days, and hours ; the 
language of defire is, " O, when wilt thou come unto 
" me ?" and of impatience, " why fiiould I wait for the 
*' I "" ■ ' ;r ?" But patience whifpers, *' it is 
*' g \ fliould both hope, and quietly wdt 

*' f of the Lord.*' To long for pvdon, 

an< 1 increafed fenfe of guilt ; to imjdore 

relief, and to be able only to (ay, '* Without are figh't- 
"ings, and within are fears;" to journey- in aweary 
land, and fee the way ftretching out immcafurably be- 
fore ufi, lengthen as we go ; to purfue ' blelfings 
which Jieem to recede as we advance, or to f^ring#vm 
OUT grafp as we are &izhig tbetei ; ^ this rehires 


$^iu 11.3 TbeTjffumpbs of Patience. * ^-S 

" pati«it continuance in well doing.** " We baye 
"aUb need. of patien[C^» that after we have done the 
"will of God, 'we may receive* the promifes/* See 
the chriftian, waiting, compcrfedly year after year in a 
?^rale of tears, for an infinite happinefs ; the heir of fuch 
an inheritance r^figned to abide fo long in indigence ! 
Surely, it is trying to be detained fo many months 
at anchor off the fair haven, the. end of his voyage in 
view; to have all the glory of the imfeen world hid 
open to the eye of faith ; the trials of this life to urge, 
and*the bleifings of another to draw ; to have earnefts 
to enfure, and foretaftes to endear. Surely there is 
enough to make him diflatisfied to tarry here. And 
it feems proper for the chriftian to be more than 
willing to go* Should an Ifraelite fix on this fide the 
piromifed land ? Is he iflJt commanded to arife and de- 
part hence ? Can he love God, unlefs he wifces to be 
with him ? Does not the new nature tend towards its. 
perfedion ? Wliat wonder, therefore, if we fhould 
hoar the believer fighing, " O that I had wings like 
a dove j for thep would I flee away, and be at reft. 
I would haften my escape from the ftormy wind and 
tempeft. O, when fliall I come and appear before 
God ? When Ihall I leave the dregs of society, and 
"join the general aJTembly above? When will my 
" dear connedions gone before, receive me into ever- 

. ^' lafting habitations 2 O, how I envy them ! O, the 
*f glories of yonder wbrid ! I seem indiftindly to see 
"the feining piis^; I seein to hear a little of their 
" melody. O, that was a perfume blown across the 
** river j how it revives my spirits, and calls me away !" 

,But a voice cries, "be patient, brethren, unto tht? 

4* The TrkMfbs of Science. [Ser. u, 

'^ coming of the Lord ; behold the husbandman \ he 
*^ waiteth for the precious fruits of the earth, a^d hath 
'^ long patience for it, until he receive the former and 
^the latter rain." The saint answers, ^* I pray, not 
^^ that He fhouM take me out of the world, but keep 
^< me from the eviL I am willing to remaip, whik 
^ He has a fiation for me to (11, a duty for me to per- 
^< form, a trial for me to bear. All the days of my 
^ appointed time will I W2ut xmtil my change come/^ 
^* Here is the patience of the saints." 

Let us learn then, my brethren, how neceflary it is 
for us to pqfless this tamper of mind ; it is of perpetu- 
al and universal use. AU of you need it, and vrill 
need it always. You do not all need genius, karning, 
wealth; but what will you do in a world like this 
without patience ? How can you be prepared for ^ 
succession of encounters, unless you ^^take to your- 
** selves the whole armour of God ?" ^ How can you 
pass through a wilderness of thorns and briars, unless 
*« your feet be Ihod with the preparation of the gos- 
*' pel of peace ?" Who can say, *' my mountain fiands 
so ftrong, I fiiall never be moved ?" " If a man 
live many years, and rejoice in them all j yet let 
^ him remember the days of darkoess, for they ihall 
** be many : all that cometh is vanity.*' How unde^ 
firable is a squeamifli appetite, that incessantly requires 
delicacies ; a puny body, that can bear no hardfhips ; a 
tender frame, that muft not be exposed to the varia- 
tions of the weather ; but how much worse is it to 
have a soft, enervated, pampergd constitution of mind, 
that muft be firoked or rockecT like a child ; that can 
with extreme difficulty be pleased ; that muft have ev- 

■ f' 

Sbk. 11.3 *' ^' Tie Triumphs ef Patience, 45 

ery thing according to its fancy. Ill a ftate where fo 
little is left to chQice and convenience, and where we 
are fiaUd to trials and changes every day, we ihould 
feek after a general preparation fer our pafikge, an d 
fircDgthen and invigorate the foul by patience. 

•—Labour flreriuoufly, not only to acquire this grace,^ 
but to excel in it. Seek higher degrees of it. Exer- 
dfe it not in one thing, but in every thing, and in ev- 
ery thing to the end. . " Let patience have its perfeA 
<* work, that ye may be perfeft and endre, lacking 
^* nothing*^ There is a God of patience, who giveth 
inore grace. Approach him vnxh enlarged deiiye, that 
you may abound in this grace alfo, " ftrengthened 
^ with all niiight according to his glorious power, unto 
*' ALL patience and long fufTering with joyfulnefs.'* 

*-*-And remember, you wiil not ahxrays be called to 
the- eziercife of patience. Your ** warfare will foon 
^* be accpmplilhed^c^ for " yet a little while. He that 
<« ihall come, will come, and will not tarry.*' A little 
more patience, . and the wicked fhall ceafe from troub- 
ling, and the weary be at reft ; a little more patience, 
and farewell, provocation, afflidion, and anxious de- 
i lays. Patience, having conveyed you fafe, and being 

I . no longer nectary, fhall return for mo»e ; but it wiU 
\ leave you in a flate where all fhall be peace, all (hall 

be quleteefs, all fhall be affurance for ever. 0, bless 
OUR God, rE people^ and make the voice oe his 








■y»— W »»^^^^i»»«^^^i^-— — ^a— «.^— i»»i^-^^— - I ■! I ■ ^»»— —^i. 

. S E E M O K III. 


Gen. XXXV. I, 2, 3. 


^HER. Trek Jacob said uvro his household^ akd ro all ^haT 

JTEMB fFJtff iriMf PUT AlTAr tffB ^rRAVGB -Gods tBAt ARE AfKONC 

THE pi^cw of hiftory prefenred in the 
book of Genefis are peculiarly valuable, and worthy 
of our regard* They pofleis the daim of truths of im- 
partiality, of remote antiquity, of indi^dual and minute; 
description. They are family scenes, which always 
charm. We feel ourselves in private life. We pur- 
sue iingle charaders through all the viciflitudes oi 
their pilgrimage, and observe the various worlpngs of 
their minds, their imperfedions, and their excellencies, 
the fleih lufting againft the spirit, and the sjnrit gaining 



Ser. lit.'] F0WS calkd ta Remembrance. 4t 

a victory over the flefh. Th©y are also recommendedf ,' 
as holding forth the dispensations oi (£vine Providence 
and Grace combined. It is painful to see a man raised 
up to be an inftrument only ; girded and guided, by a 
hand which he knows not \ accompliihing designs 
whidx he never desired or approved j and then hid 
aude or daihed to pieces as a vessel in which there is 
no pleasure, and such are often the philosophers, the 
politidbms, and the herdes of this world. But how 
delightful and edifying is it, to contemplate men who 
were not only instruments, but favourites ; who did 
^ the will of God from the heart,*' and " had the 
" testimony that they pleased Him ;" who were the 
/ depofitories of the divine counsel, and increafed the 
treasures of revelation : ^ of whom, as concerning 
<< the flesh, Chrifl came," and with whom we hope to 
^ reside forever : " for many shall come from the east 
'^ and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and 
*« Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.*' %he 
command of God also leads us back to the patriarchal 
age, sends us forth in search of these renowned wor* 
thies, and enjoins us " not to be slothful, but followers 
" of them, who through faith and patience inherit the 
^* promises/* 

These reflexions, my brethren, are intended to rake 
this book in your esteem, and to engage your atten- 
tion tg the wprds which I have detached from it for 
^ur edification, this evening, « And God said unto 
•* Jacob, arise^ go up to Bethe^ and dwell there ; and 
"make there. an altar ^nto God, that appeared unto 
" thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy 
^' brother. Then |acob said unto his household, and 


^ to aHtl^t w^re mth hiisb put a^rjKf t^e %ax^<e Godb 
^^ tbat sure amongr^^ and be dean^ ^nd change ypw 
<^ ^rmenu ; ^md li% m arise^ and gp ^.to Sethel ; 
'f md I will make thei^e an altsur uato God^ wl^o aa*. 
f^ s'vi^red me in tbe day of my difiress, ^nd was mtb 
^ me in the way which I went»" Let us R^yifiW 

J£a ^ X>RAW ;POR7H ^HM or Tfl$ I}N$TRUCTiOm^ 

" 'fP W -^^ Bethel."-—^-*—" Let us arise and go up to 
^^ Bethel,; and I wiH there make an altar unto .God^ 
" who answered tfie in the day of my diftress, and " 
" ims with me in the way which I went.** 

' Part L The pa&ge before us refers to a very 
interefting part of the hifiory of Jacob, which it will i^ 
be i|ece£iry for iw to review. To escape the fury of 
his liltbther Esau, Jacob, by the {proposal of his mother, 
goes to Padan^Aram^ to. the house of his ujacle Laban. 
Oa the firil night of his journey he dreamed. He saw 
a laddnr reaching from earth to heaven, angds ascend- 
ing and descending upon it, and God above it, in a 
pofhire of attention, '* Handing," and viewing a poor 
pilgrim below. He also* spake ; ■ and aflured him of 
the relatipn Iq which HE ftood to his pious ance^ors, 
proinised to , give the land of Canaan to hb seed,, to 
render his . progeny illuftr ious, and ennumerable> . and 
eventually in one of his descendants to bless all the 
families of the earth. V To accommodate Himself 
ftill more to the cogencies of his condition, he added 



SfiR. ni.l Vows called to Remembrances 49 ^ | 

. ■ ^' I 

♦' behold lam With thee, and wMl keep thee in all 

^ phces whither thou goe^, and will bring thee again 
** into this land ; for I will not leave thee until I have 
^ ddne that which I have spoken to thee of-" Deeply 
impreflbd, Jacob arose and before he proceeded on his 
journey, " vowed a vow, saying. If Gpd will be with 
« me, and will keep me in the way that I go, and will 
** give me bread to eat, and raimenM:o put on, so that 
** I come again to my father's house in peace ; then . 
^^fiiall the Lord be my God, and this ftone which I 
^< have set for a pillar ihali be God's house, and of all that 
** thdu ihalt give me I will siifely give the tenth Unto 
*' thee." His wifhing to lay God under an Additional 
bond marks, his infirmity. God had sjpoken j^^md Jacob 
fhould have been satisfied* But it was wise and pious 
to bind himself* Some have been inclined to censure 
. Jacob, Is too cdnditional and too selfifii on this occa- 
fion ; supposing he engaged only to serve God, provided 
he fhould be indulged with the blessing he specifies. 
This would have been censurab^p indeed, and utterly 
oppofite to the faith of the patriarchs, one of whom 
said, *• though he slay me, yet will I truft in him ;" 
and another of whom, when commanded, ** obeyed, 
** and went out, not knowing whither he went.*' The 
meaning is, that God by these freih inftances of his 
favour, would furnish him with frelh motives to serve 
and ^orify Him ; and he ftipulates the manner in 
which he would discharge the obU^tioti he ihould be 
laid under. 

After twenty years hard service in the house of his . 
uncle, Jacob resolves to return. Three days after his 
departure, Laban pursues him. He overtakes him in 


^ Vows called to FLeme'mbrartce* £Sfiii^ t^ 

Gilead, is pacified, and withdraws* Jacob -moves on,. 
croiTes the ford of Jabboc, descends on |ts southern 
bank, reacheth the ford of Succoth, wrefties with the 
angel, passes over the river Jordan weftward, and 
comes to Shalem. This was an eventful pofitioni 
here he bought a piece of ground froni Hamor ; here 
he raised an altar; and here befel him the af&idion 
he experienced in the seduction of his daughter^ and 
ihe murder of the Shechemitio y llere he lingers till 
seven ot eight years have elapsed. O Bethel, how 
4rt thou forgotten ! O Jacob, where is your vow to. 
repair tliither as soon as you returned! Your Go4 
has ful^d his engagement. He has been with you^ 
defendeayou,.p^spered yoti, and you are come back 
hr peace. 4J Where is your altar? Where the tenth of 
;^o\if posoessipns to maintain it ? We may compare one 
CharaSef with another. Behold David. What is he 
saying ? " I will go into thy house with burnt oSer« 
* ings ; I win pay thee my vows, which my lips have, 
" uttered, and my mouth hath spoken, when I was ia 
^ trouble.^ Hannah • occurs. I see her in the bitter^ 
hess of her soul, praying and weeping sore. •* And 
" file vowed a vow, and said, O Lord of Hosts, if thou 
^ wilt indeed look on the afiliftion of thine handmaid, 
^ and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid^ 
^ but will give unto thine handmaid a man child, thei^ 
^ I will give him unto the Lord all the days of his life^ 
** and there' shall no razor come upon his head." He 
16 bom } and his verf name shall be a remembrancer. 
He is wea^e^; and flie takes l|im w$th her» and 
brings him unto the hp^seof God in Shilph, ai)4 tnti^ 
duces hipi to.llli, ^^Aii^ ibe ^aid^ O r^^lotd^ a$ 

1 ^ 

SfiH. 111.3- P^ows catledio Remembrance. S\ 

^ thy souIiiVeth, my lord, I am the woman that ftood 
** by thee here praying unto the Lord, For this child 
•* I prayed, and the Lgrd hath given me my petition 
^ which I asked pf^him: therefojre ako I have lent 
"him to the Lord, as long as he liyeth he shall b<j 
•^ lent to the Lord/* O, what were her feelings in this 
journey ! what a contention between the mother and 
the saint ! What a trial was here ! an only child, a 
child lon^ defired, and endeared by a thous$n4 pon- 
iSderations ; to give him up; to reiign him for £V£R ; 
to sefe hini once a year, only to renew the pain of sepa- 
ration .! what a supeiior delicacy, fervour,, permanency, 
is there in the devotion of this female ? How does the 
patriarch yanifli, fl^om a comparison with this pious 
^oman? Here Jacob ftill lingers, and discovers no dis- 
position to perform his vows ; and it becomes necessary 
for Qod hini^self to address him. " And Gpd said 
•* lintq Jacob, arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there • 
^' and make there an altar i(nto Gpd, that appeared 
^ unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau 
" thy brother. Then Jacob said unto his household, 
*• and to all th^t were with bin^, put away the ftrange 
" gods that are among ypu, and be dean, and change 
**your garments: and Ipt us arise, apd go up to 
"Bethel} and 1 wiD make there an altar unto Godj^, 
" who answered me in the day of my diftress, and waa 
** with me in th^ way which I went;.** From these 

words — * 


Part -H. We may derive some instruftive and use- 
fill dbs^*vations. First, we may remark how soon the 
influence of impreffive scenes wears away, and how 

5^ Vows calledjQ Rt^mk,ranc^. [Skf, m. 

prone we are to lose the sense of our mertnes^ ^m^ sd^i 
the fine religious feelings they once produced. If a , 
person had seen Jacob on the morning after his vifipn^^ 
and when he was leaving the place made sacred by Wsi, 
vow, and had said to him, *^' God will accomplilh thy 
desire; he will guide thee and keep thee; provide 
for thee, and bring thee back enriched and multiplie4, 
to see thy native land ; and you will think nothing 
" of all this ; you will live year after year unmindfiil 
" of Bethel, and suffer your vow to lie unperform- 
** ed;" the prophecy would have been incre<fible; h^. 
would have exclaimed, " can I ever thus trifle witk. 
*' God, or become insensible to such a benefeclor ?" 
" What ! is thy servant a dog, that he should do thi^ 
"thing?" How. were the Israelites affeftedr when 
God appeared for them ! ^^ They sang his praise ;*' 
they resolved to distrust him no more ; they said " All 
" that the Lord comriiandeth us will we do." *' But 
" they soon forgot his works, and the wonders which 
" He had shewn them ;" murmured again ; rebelled 
again. Their mercies were written in the sand, and thq 
first returning wave of trouble washed them out. 
Hence David lays an embargo upon his thoughts: 
" Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his 
" benefits." It would be well if we could identify and 
secure our feelings in certain periods and conditions of 
life, that we may afterwards review them, cpmpar^ 
ourselves with them, perceive our declensions and de- 
ficiencies ; »and 'bring forward these former experi- 
ences, when we grow cold to warm us, and when we 
grow slothfal to quicken us. A faithful recoUedion is 
of peculiar importance to the chriistian. Things ca© 

• I ft 

Sk^. mO V(ws caOed iff Rmiffbr&nce. St 

icaprais tbe mind no longer \\aa^ they are in it ; and 
fli^ in the n^pmory occasion failures in the life. But, 
abs ! fike a sieve^ full while in the river, but whea 
ladsed xip, em{Ay and; drop^ning ^ and as wator^ which 
has a natural tendency to be cold, but requires a per- 
petual fire to keep it warix^ ; so treachq^ous^are our 
memories in divine things } so constantly do we need 
means and helps j so necessary is it toha^ve our '^ mtttdi 
^' fiirred up by way of ren^embiance/' 

Siecondly, God wiQ remind his people of forgotten 
duties* And he <;an never be at a loss^ for meant to 
admoDi^ us. H^ addresses us by hes providence^ 
The design of ^fflidion is ta bring our sia to remem* 
bx^nce. Sometimes the can^e of affiidion is not SQ 
obvious, and we say with Job, ^ ihew.nie wherefore 
^^ thou contend^t ^ith me."' At other times there is a 
wonderful corre^sKience b^tweea the crim? and the 
calamity \ the one is the coosequence* and the discovoi- 
ry'of the other, and leads back the mind instantly to it. 
When Qod brings us into new difficulties, and we 
apply for r^lief^ our former deliverances and induU 
gences are i^emembqred \ and our ingratitude, in not 
duly acknowledging and improving them, stares u^in 
the face^ and destroys the liberty and Bfc of prayer^ 
Have you succoured a fellow creature, and is he thank- 
ful? Can you hear his praise^ for your petty favours, 
and not be reminded of your obligations to Qod for 
benefits infinitely superior ? Or is . he unthankful and 
unworthy ^ IJere is a glass held up as you pass^ along, 
in which you may catch. a glance of your own image : 
**how much mcjre undiankfiil, and unworthy have 1 
" proved to my 2^ghty Friend, whose goodnesi^ and** 

14 fws cdlkdio Remembrance. ' [Szvu uu 

^ mercy have foBowed me ail the days of iny ttfe !*^ 

He renews recollection by means of. his •word. Th^ 

scripture is not only ^* profitable for doctrine ; but re* 

^ proof, corre6tibn, and inftrudion in righteousness/^ 

knot only affords a word in season for him that is wea* 

ry, but for him that is careless and lukewarm. By 

tUs the secrets of the heart are made manifest ; and 


happy are those who are willing to apply this touch* 
Hone, to use tftis balance of the sanctuary, to take thik 
c<andle of the Lord, and examine the chambers oi$ 
knagery within, and who, when they have done all; 
vill invite a sieverer scrutiny ; ^^ search me^ O God, 
^ and know my heairt, try me, and know my thoughts ;[ 
^ and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead 
^^ me in the way everlafiing.^' Minifters are God^s 
remembrancers. Their business is not to bring strange', 
things to your ears, to entertain you with novelties, or 
to encourage in you a fondness for those speculations 
whidi bear slightly on the heart and life ; but they are 
to recall your attention to things, which though the 
m<A 'simple are the moft important, and at the same, 
time the moift neglected ; to remind you of things 
akeady known ; to impress you 'with things already her 
lieved ; to place your practice opposite youif faith, * 
and your lives by the side ot your profession. " I will 
'^ therefore put you in remembrance of these things, ^ 
** though ye once knew, them f here is our example. \ 
^ If thou i^ut the brethren in remembrance of these ^ 
^ things, thou shalt be a good minifier of Jesus Chrift." ^ 
This is oiir commendation. God has also an internal 
witness and monitor. It is conscience; and if in its^ 
f^t^rstl fiate khas power to afxnise tlie transgressor^ 

Ik>w ipucb siore ioQacpoe wm it possess whai rwewed 

md sanctified I 

Thirdly, Giactous chancers .are sdi^e to divine inti^ 
iBifUions. Herein Ve perceive a dpareace between 
the^a and others. They are encompassed witk infir-' 
nvuty ; . they may err ; ihey may M ; but there b m 
them a pripcqple which secures thek rising again.; 
they are opeb- to convidSpn, they, welcome repeoof ) 
they.mdt, retrad^ re&smt . and site watchful and 
prayerful to preveilt similar miscarriages in future. 
A uian asleep only, is very distinguishable, from a per* 
son dead; the difference will appear as soon as yoU' 
endeavour to awake them. The one is unsusceptible}- 
the other stirs, inquires, springs up. A living bough 
niiay \)efLd down to the earth under a pressure } but * 
temoye the load, an^ it is i^ight again, ^nd points i 
heavenwards ElUiu finely describes the feelings of a 
pious ihiiui under divine corredion ;. ^ surely it is» 
^^ meet lo be said unto God, I have borne chastisement^, 
'f I wil( not offend any more. That which I know » 
^^ not, teach thou me, ; if I haye done iniquity, I will, 
^^ do no more." When our Lord looked only uppo * 
Peter, "he went out and V?pt bkterly." Jacob does, 
not argue the ipatter with GodL does .not vindicate ' 
himself, does not extenuate bis fault. The Lord ^^^.x 
ploys no severe .lajngu^ge^j^pf'is it. 1^ a soft ^ 

word subdues him.; ff it i^tQo pH^ ^ be denied, aud" 
*^ too bad to be^ excfi4^ :* I.b^e siniMed ; what shajl 
^^ be done unto thee, ,Q thou {Nreserver Of .men. I will • 
^ acknowledge ipy traq^es^ion, I will be sorry for ' 
•* my sin J I^wU.iorsake.itj ;duty, negHefted alas I 
^.f^.l^^iS' sJ?^.^ np k)?iger .9««^c#gdi thy voice I 

i^ Vtrws^ calUd U RmenArofict. (]$£&• lit; 

^ heat ; fb]r cofhmftnd I hafteii to dbey.^ Such was 
the meaning of his words, and of his phictice. For 
ke does not delay, or he^tate : ^^ th£i4 Jacob said 
^^ unto his household, and to all that were with hkn, 
^' pat away the grange Cods that ar6 amoiig you, and 
^ be deaA, and change your garments ) and let us 
^ arise, ai^ go tip to Betheh'' From hence we may 
cbserre alsd, 

Foutthlyj That holy preparations become the sd- 
emn service of God. They are generally deemed neces- 
sary for minifters. It is supposed they ought to be pre. 
♦iously alone } to fix their attention ; to impress their 
minds ; to implore the divine affiftance and blessing* 
But have hearers iio need of this ? Are they to efigage 
in the worship of God, entirely regardless of the na- 
ttnre, the importance, and 'the influence of divine infti- 
tutions ? To omissions of this land it is owing, that 
ordinances in our day are become as unprofitable a^ 
•they are common. If before you came together, you 
Retired, and endeavoured to obtiiti an abftraction of 
mind ; if by reflection you procured a seriousness of 
frame, so fHendly to deVotidn ; if i>y examining your 
selves, you discovered what ^nful prejudice, or passion, 
was likely to reftder you partial hearers ; if you formed 
a resolution to lay yourselves open to the influence of 
the woikl, and to rectify whatever appeared to be 
wrong ; if you remembered that you are accountable 
even for your attendance, and that the word you hear 
will judge you in the laft day ; if you came with eager 
desii^ and earneft e:qpectation, founded on the promise 
of God, that he is the rewarder of them that diligent- 
ly seek hitti y and above aU, vnth prayer, knowing that 

Ser. luQ Tows ialled to Rsniemhrance. 57 

** neither is he that planteth any thing, nor he that wa- 
,** tereth, but Gfod who giveth the increase;" were 
" vbu thus to enter on the service of the Sanfltuary j I ask, 
.would there not be a natural tendency in all this t;o 
render the means oif grace impressive and efficacious, 
and is not this the only authorized way in which you 
can hope for the divine bleffing ? Rafli entering upon 
duty is rarely profitable. God may meet with us una- 
wares,' biit where has lie promised to do it r" " Draw 
* " nigh to God, agd he will draw nigh to you.** " Keep 
"thy foot wh«f" thou goeft tb the house of God.** 
** Offer not the sacrifice of fools/' " Take heed how f* 
*' ye hear." Wherefore lay dpart all filthiness, and • 
^ superfluity of naughtiness, and receive ^ith meekness 
** the engrafted word, which is able, to save your souls.'* 
These are the commands of God, and they regulate 
our hope, as well as our pradice. And in this man* 
ner bur good old forefatheins worshipped ; then pab« 
lie services were not so nusltiplied as to abridge, if not 
exclude the duties of the family and 4^^ doset ; then 
hearing the word was not rendered an ratertaintneat 
so cu^omary, common, and trifling ; with then) dlviae 
worship was an awftd thing; they prepared for one 
duty, by anodier ; andiike wise performers, they tu- \^ 
ned the instruments before the concert began*. 

Fifthly, There may lie wickedness in a religibui 
family. We find **ftrange gods" even !n JacoVs 
househbuld. We may view iniquity in such a fituation 
two ways. Furst, as a good man's affliction ; and a 
dreadful affliCfion it will prove. It is bad to have fidk- 
ness in his house, but it is worse to have fin, the plague 

and pestilence of the soul - How, says he, can I bear to 



S& Vows eallfid m Rmmiramm {9^%* w^ 

\ . " ... 

see the destruaion of my kki^ked ! Secondly, as a good 

man's fia^ult. Could we see things as God does, aitiT' 
be able to trace baqk efieds to their causes, we should 
soon perceive the source of the disorders and wicked- 
ness which prevail in many houses. Masters of fami- 
lies ! have you rufed well the charge which God has 
given you ? Have you behaved towards your servants^ 
as remembering you have a master in heaven ? Have 
you shewn them a kind and pious attention ? Have 
you had your children in subjeftion ? Have you traior 
ed them up in the nurture and admc-afion of the Lord ? 
Have you instrufted them only in particular dogmas^ • 
or impregnated them with the spirit of Christianity \ 
and endeavoured to render its duties lovely and pradi- 
cable ? Have you not provoked them to wrath, till they 
are discouraged ? Or has not your indulgence become 
connivance, so that you have resembled Eli, whose 
** sons made themselves vile, and he restrsdned theni 
** not ?*^ or David, " who had never displeased Adonic 
^ jah at any time in saying, why hast thou done so ?" 
Have you maintained order ; or lived in a confusioa 
favorable to every evil work? Has daily devotion 
been seriously performed ? Have you enforced all by 
your own walk and conversation ? Have you set no 
evil thing before your eyes ? While you have preach* 
ed meekness in words, have you not recommended 
paffion by example ? While } ou have taught them hu- 
mility by precept, have you not enforced pride by prac- 
tice ? And are you surprised to find irregularities in 
vouR family ? Wonder if you please, but wonder at 
your own folly in seeking by the wayside to " gather 
•^ grapes of thorns, or figs of thiftles," Complain if 

!Ssr%i ,111.3 "^^ rtf/ferf to Remembrance. 

you please^ btrt complain of yourselves. Are you so 
unreasonable as to expeft to " reap where you have 
•*'not sown, and to gather where you have not straw- 

Again, we remark tliat our refigious concern should 
not be confined to ourselves only ; .we are to engage 
our families to accompany us in the exercises of devo- 
tion. Thus Jacob would not go alone, but call upon 
his household, and all that are with liim ; each must 
prepare, and each must attend. And of Abraham, fays 
<Jod, "I know him that he wiH warn his children 
^ and his housbhold after him, and th^ shall keep 
** the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment, 
^ that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which 
**he hath spoken of him/* In the same disposition 
was Joshua, who said, " as for me and my houjse, we . 
" will serve the Lord.^ We may add the centurion ; , 
^* he feared God, witli all his house." In your owh . 
families you possess an authority and an influence ; " a 
** father has honour, a master fear." Servants and 
children naturally obey. Tliis authority and influ- 
ence you are to employ, for religious, as well as dvH 
^purposes ; and to vary the exercise of them according 
to the condition of those who are in family connecfion 
witli you ; ufing command witli some, persuasion with 
others, means with all.* As the head of a family, you 
are to mind the souls of those who are under your care, 
as wdl as their bodies. They are not designed to live 
here only, or principally ; they are hastening into eter- 
nity. And you are not to live Jiere always ; you wiH 
soon be called " to give an account of your steward- 
" thip,*' and you will bcf judged, not only as an indU.r 

60 Vows called ig Rm^mbfmc^. \%%9^. \}l 

vidual ; but as the ov^nep of, an uopsbhoi^d : afttt 
the man has been tried^ the niafter will be fuixunoned ; 
O that you may " give % your account witl^joy, and. 
*« not with grief/* £vei^ befe you have tjie advantag;e 
of domefUc religion ; ^' the voice of salyatipn a^d of 
" rejoicing is in the tabernacles of the; nght^qus ;" 
fuch houfehplds only are fafe and happy. i|ow pleaf^ 
ing is it to fee all the memb^s of a fan^ly worfhip? 
ping God together daily in their o>vn hpiife! How. 
lovely to observe them coining forth in the morning 
pf the fabbath, all going to the houfe of God in com- 
pany ! Minifters are encouraged, while they fee in fuch 
houfeholds the nurferies of their ch^rches9 a^id addrefs 
with pleafure a hopeful aflembly^ forpied by the union 
pf a number of amiable, orderly, ferious families. But 
they are pained to fee yoi; disjoined, and coming in 
alone; the father, without the fon, and. the mother 
without the daughter. Shall I intimate here the pro* 
priety not only of your engaging your families in re- 
ligious dutie^^ but of taking them along with you, as 
far as ,cifcumftances will, allow, to the $|ame place of 
worftup ? Thus you will be cejtain pf their attendance, 
by their being under your eye j ^hile. they will be. 
prcferved from that iaftidioufneft^ and vagrancy of 
mind, fo much cherifhed by loofe and various hearing. 

. Qnce more we may pbferve, that deliverance claims 
(ervice ; that jn^ayer anfwiered is to became praUe. Ja- 
cob reiolves to diftinguiih himfelf .for God, who had 
appeared fo. wonderfully for hiin; and tp. make th^ 
place of mercy, the plaqe of duty : ^^ th^e will I make 
*• an altar unto God, who anfwered me in the day of 
" my diftr^is, aj)d was with me in the way which I 

^^'visvMf.^ B to^ 1dm. trayefling slowly on with Ms ftm* 

ily;-; at length, be approaches. Bethel» Ito revtfit a 

pbce vfe have qqI: saen. for twenty^ eight years^ i^ ali^ 

mi^ affe^ng* Aftaijf] ri>fledions wall/ naturally, ari^ 

iT\ a contQm{dBti^ m&d« '^ Since- 1 last viewed- thift^ 

*^ s|>ot9 what un^pectjsd coonections have liformed^!'^ 

^^'What changesL ^va I ^cperkncedM' have been. 

f* led by away ^hlch I knew not ; lover and friend"'* 

^^ haft: thou . put £ur, and my acquaintance ' 

^^ into darknefiu How much c^ life is gone, to return ' 

^ do more ! it has passed away like, a dream. lElbw 

^* fittle is. there ia looldng back» upon' which the n}ihd' 

^ can. fix with- satisfilftion ! How pfren have T been de* 

^^.teived.ip my hopes; How varied' does the world*' 

*^ now appear ! how much mote of its vanity d6 I see, 

^ and of i)»j ^xatiQn> do 1 feel ! Iv is time to seek a 

better, couatry^rf Sb, teach me tanmnber myv days^ 

that Imiay apply my heart unto wisdom/' Jacob is 

nowv arrived :; he ldok$ around ; he ^ descries partiaUy ' 

covered with. moss, tlyefton^- which he had set upfo^ 

a piUar. ; he embraces it, and calling to his family^-— ' 

^* Twenty, eight. yf»rs ago this v^ry flone was my pil- 

** low ; here destitute of accommodsitioiis I was compeL 

*^ ieid to^ieep*; hiereJ psified, my flaff all my.ftore : and ' 

•* hither He : has. returned me/ What mingled emo* 

tions .does Jie fed! what sl^ame.! what joy! what com 

demnadoa.of himself !> what praise to the. God of 

Ghristaaiia, youhave lio joutney-to take, nomateii^ 
al ^r ,to raise, . no aniinal' saeitfice to immobte* '^ O^ 
«fer wito. God thanlcsgl^ing^ and pay thy vowsr* 
^ itntot^ Mom Ifigh/' " Wboso oflfeitsth toe pral% 

M Vows cdBedU PMiembrattee* [Bsit. m^ 

^'^orifieth me^ and to him that ordereth his conveN 
** sation aright will I jihew the salvation of God,* 
What sa^y you, Chriftians, have you had no *** day of 
« diflxess/* in which " He answered"* you ? Has there 
been no ** way in which He has been with** you as 
your guide and your protector ? Has He not disap- 
pointed your fesos, and far exceeded your hopes? 
•^But Hezekiah rendered not according to the bene- 
"-fits which had been done unto him." " Were there 
** jiot ten cleanfeA ? but where are the nine ?" " Go 
**up/* says God, "to Bethd and dwell there.*' 
May you answer with Jacob, ^' let us arise, and go up 
**' to Bethel ; and there will I make an altar unto God, 
"^who answered me in the day of my distress, and was 
" with me in the way which I went.** To whom. 

Part III. Does this apptyi? and who in this assenv- 
bly is concerned in the command and the example ? 

Firft, Have none of you been advanced in worldly 
possessions ? Wealth is not always hereditary ; Provi- 
dence sometimes " raisetk up the poor out oi the duft, 
*^ and lifteth up the needy out of Che dunghill.*' Many 
'know what it is to be ^^ abased," as well as what it is to 
^abound.** Look back to a period, when, if you 
were not embarrassed^ you had, <^ none inheritance, no 
^* not so much as to set your loot on.** Remember 
your feelings when beginning the world; you formed 
your plans, and endeavoured to secure his as^ftance, 
whose '< blessing maketh rich and addeth no sorrow/* 
"<< Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain 
^^ that build it. It b vata to rise up early, to sit up late 
^^ and to eat the bread of si»nrows. O Lord, I beseech 

S21U IH-J Vows called to Remmhrarwe. 09 

^ thee, send now prosperity. With such opportunitii$» 
^ and capacities, I will promote thy cause, and relieve 
«thy poor. The ftreams fliall remind me of the 
** source. Praise waiteth for thee, O Qod^ and unto 
" thee . shall the vow be performed/' And He has 
more than realized your expectations*. The staff has 
long since (Usappearedr and we behold your two bands \^ 
we see abundance, or shall 1 say extravagance ? Where 
are your altars and your offerings ?, Where are youis 
^ promised thankfulness and z^eal ? What have you rea>^ 
dered ?. What have y oa done ? What are- you doing J 
^ He calls upon you to follow this example ^ you ace 
required to say» '^ Let us arise, and go up to Bethel ;« 
*** and I will make there an altar unto God, who. an- 
•* swered me in the day of my distress, and was with 
** me in the way which I went.** 

Secondly, Have none of you been led back from 
**the valley of the shadow of death?*' To think o£ 
dying was lEwful and affecting. To . take a final leave, 
of earth ; to drop schemes unfinished ^ to bid farewell 
to friends j^ to see weeping relations ; to feel pain o£ 
body» and remorseof conscience ; to contemplate an. 
og^ning eternity ; and to find the Judge standing be-^ 
i|||p the door ; all made you say, *' O remember that 
^^ my life is wind ; mine eye shall no more see good. 
<* TThe eye of him that hath seen me shall see me no. 
^•more; thine eyes are upon me, and I am not." 
** Return, O Lord, deliver my soul ; Q save me for 
** thy merdes sakie j fwr in death there is no remem- 
*• brance of thee ; in the grave who shall give thee 
y ^ thanks ?*' Yoa assumed an aic of penitence ; you 
'. promised to render life, if spared, sacred to religion^ Re 

iieafd your pfaytet^ ^iwyoiir fears, ir^movtfd the ftroke 
«)f hh keavy fatod, tiebe^ct yoUr fireiogth, ir^oibuted 
^our theeks^ and phcied yoU ih the circle bf ii&eAiliiess 
find frietidehip agdin. But the iscene, as it remotlred to a 
d^anc^y ceased to iitipress ; ycor vieWs of this world, 
te y^ ftood ofi^ tlie cdofihes of another, i^eirb sc^n 
tliang^ ; yi^ttr r^Atiliitktt)^ a#fc ndw forgbtt^h^ or you 
idu^ td f e<S&l thgni ^ yoPii ai^^ ashkm«d to tldnk that 
any should hskve witnessed ^uch ihftdiiceS of yoiii: \ireak- 
tffti; To modve every notion of your haviiig been 
MTldUs id thetfi^ ydu (diin^ defe^ier ih di^ipation than 
More \ when these vows bctur, yon endeavour by 
^ontpany or plealstire tc^ thiush theni. You cried, 
^ Let iife die the desith of the righteous, and let my 
^ k^t end be Bktf his ;" you asked for serious chris* 
tians dnd pious minifters, and said, ^^ pray for us*" 
These you now shiin ; you know them not ; they 
Would give an edge to memory, and* a fting to con- 
science. Afid ** b it thus you requite the Lord, O 
** foolish people and unwise ?** Look back to the hour 
of atii'ction and of dangeir ; remember your fears, 
your groans, your prayers, and your profeffions. Go, 
and acknowledge the Lord that healed thee. Let the 
physician who prescribed, and those friends who sooth- 
ed thee on the bed of languishing, have their fliare of 
praise ; but ** the Lord killeth and maketh alive ; he 
** bringeth down to the grave, and raiseth up.** Say 
with David, " I wks brought low, and he helped me ; 
« What (hall I rendet unto the Lord for all his benefits 
"towards me? Iwflltake the cup of salvation, and 
« call upon- the- name' of the Lord ; I wiB pay my 
** V0W8 onto the Lord, liow in the presence of all his 

Szm* luH Vffwi called id Remem^heei 65 

" people/' Say witli Hezekiali, *^ The living, the 
^^ living, he shall praise thee, as I do this day ; tlie 
^ £ither lo the children ihall make knovni thy truth* 
^* The Lord was ready to save me. Therefore we will 
^^ sing my songs to the stringed instruments all the 
^^ days of our life in the house of the Lord/' Imitate 
Jacob ; ^ Let us arife and go up to Bethel ; and I will 
^ build there an altar unto God, who answered ine in 
*^ the day of my distress^ and was with me in the way 
^* which I went." 

Thirdly^ Ace there no backsliders here i Whm 
you had fadlen by your iniquity, did not anguiih and 
horror take hold upon you ? Reflediag upon your 
fin^ a^ravated by knowledge^ and by obligations t))ie 
most tender • and most awful, wcfre you not ready to 
€0&clude your case was hopeless ? . And when s^ length 
yop were encouraged to approach^ and to address a 
God you had provoked, was not this your language ? 
«« Lord take away all iniquity, receive us graciously ; 
^ so win we render the calves of our lips : Ashur shaill 
^^ not save us^ } We wUl not ride upon horses, neither 
^^ will we say aiiy more to the work of our hands, ye 
*^ are our gods ; ^or iik thee the iBsttherless findeth mer^^ 
" cy.** " Cast me not away from thy presence, and 
^take not thy Holy i^rit from uie. .Restore unto 
^^ me the joy c^ thy salvationi and uphold n>e with thy 
^ free spirit i then will I t^uji trassgressors thy ways, 
<^.and siimer^ sludl be converted unto thee* Qpift 
thou *my Kps, and my mciutfa shall shew forth thy 
pmise/' Fu^ your enga^ments ; follow the patfi* 
iirch ; ^^ Le^. us arise and go up to Bethel ; and I will 

^< build there au altar unto God, who answered 



<B' ^ws catted to RemmbrAnce. fSia. itn^ 

^ the ^7 of my distress, and was with me in the way: 

^ which I Went.'* 


Fourthly, What were your feelings j O christians^^ 
when, convinced of sin, you wer^ first led to sedk sal^ 
"ration through our Lord Jesus Christ? Ah! return^ 
jfi affeding moments^ and- i^mind us of an experience 
^hich hais long^ been fled* O, what striiangi against 
An \ O, whait indifference to the world ! O, what en* / 

gagemeiitb to serve God ! You were willing to follovtr \ 

wher^v^r He should lea4 } you glcmed in the reproach 
ef his cross ; ^' having food and raiment/' you were 
^therewith content," One things was aeedfiii, one* 
doncern engrossed you ; ^ Say unto my soul, I am 
^ thy salvation/' And you succeeded j and you hav« 
a gCK>d hope through grace ; but to what is all thts^ 
Idessed exp^ence redwed ? To this dulhiess in hear^ 
ing; to tli^ deadbess in prayer ; to this murmuring and* 
CDmi^aining under trials ; to this fear of man which 
hringeth a snare; to tliis^ eagerness for the things o£ 
file world : ^ Gb, and cry in the ears of Jcnisalemv 
^ saying, thus saith the Lord, I remember thee, the- 
^ l^dness ctf Uiy youth, the love of thine espousals^ 
^ when thou wentast after me in the wilderness, in a^ 
* land that was not sown: Israel was holiness to the 
•• Lord, and the first fruits of his increase/' " Never- 
^ theless I hav« somewhat against thee, because thou hast? 
** left thy first love ; remember therefore from whence 
^ thou art fallen, and repent, and^do thy fxjist works/* 
^ Arise, and go up to Bethel, and dwdl there, and 
^ build an altar unto God, who answered you in the^ 
^ day of your distress, and was ^th you. in the way. 
•• vrfiichyou went/* ' 

iB[£lL. IU.3 




Chrfstians, ye who are always ftrangers and pil- 
2geitt» xppoa earth, look £wward to a heavenly country 
Jkh ! when yott iiave reached home j when you have 
(escaped all the dangew *to which you are now expo- 
^9ed ; who^ yoa possess all the go6dnefs promised 
you in the word of truth,; then no fbrgetfiilness, 
nad no nee#of memorials. AU your merciee ^1 aris^ 
an view ; you will perceive innumerable instances of 
the divine goodness, which you are now unable to 
•discover, and all will be ^seen with their enhancing 
qualities and circumstances. You wiU bless Him for 
idl*the diq;)eiisitiOins of his provideacae^ for the dark 
which now perplex, for the painful which now dfetress^ 
for the alarming which now terrify 4 ^ God of aH 
^^ {^race, 2wd Father of mercy, tlu)u hast answered me ta 
^^ efirery day of distress $ thou hast been with me in ev&». 
«f ry vay ihairr travelled; thou hast su&red me to want 
^ ^tto good thing ; and here I raise an akar, Mch as | 
*^^ could not rear in yonder wwld, where I was encomi* 
^f passed witl;t infirmities. Now I shall serve thee day 
^^ and night in tky temple, without imperfeftlon, an^ 
^< without end. blessed are they that dwell in tl^ 
house, they will be still prabiuj; Thee// Am^ii. 


-r . — -? — T ■■, ■ ■ I ' I , .■ qpsBTqaai^aB^peBipapng^li 



£z£K. xi. 19, 20. 


wiraiv row: and I will Tjycs tmr sfONr bsabt our oprHBiM 


^* THE wor^ of the Lord are great^ 
^' sought out of all them that have pleausure therein/^ 
It is pleasing to observe Him as the God of naturci 
*' renewing the face of the earth/* *' crowning the 
^* year with his ^odness/' *' opening his hand, " and 
satisfying the desire of every living thing." It is 
edifying to *^ trace Him 2|s the God of providence, &(- 
^* ing the bounds of our habitation/' assigning every 
man his station, qualifying him for the sphere in which 
he moves, and sometimes ^'raising up the poor out 
^< of the dust, and lifcing the needy out of the dung* 
^< hill, that he may set him with princes, even with the 
*' princes of his people/' But it is much more pleasing 
and edifying to contemplate Him as the God of all 
GRACE. Here He ^ excelleth in glory/' Here " He 
^' spares not his own Son, but delivers him up for us alL'^, 


3bil. ivJ] The Naturs cf€ienuine Religion.^ 6^ 


Here ^ He saves us by the washing of regeneration, 
^^ and 'the renewing of the Holy Ghost, which he flieds 
•* on us abundantly through Jesus Chrift our Saviour/^ 
Here we behold Him, from the ruins of the fall, md- 
king the sinner ^' an eternal excellency, the joy of 
^ many generations/* All this ** purpose and grace** 
He has ^ven us in a way of promise \ and of all the 
promises with which the scripture abounds, no one i$ 
more momentous than the words which we have read. 

* . * . ■ 

<^ And I will give them one heaft, and I will put a new 
«• spirit within you : and I y^iU take the stony heart 
?* out of their fiesh, and will give them an heart of 
*^ flesh ; that they may walk in my statutes, and keep 
^ mine ordinances, and do them ; and they shall be 
^ my people, and I wiH be their God." 

Behold a full representation of a subject which de- 
serves all your regard. See genuine religion devel- 
oped in foiir essential articles. I. Its Author. IL The 
disposition it produces. III. The obedience it demandst* 

IV. The blessedness it ensures. 

... • 

I. Observe, my brethren, l^ow expressly God ap- 
propriates this work to himsei^f ; ** I will give 
" them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within 
* you j'' and so of the rest. For real religion is of a 
DIVINE original. It never would have had an existenci^ 
in the world without the revelation of God ; and it 
never will have an existence in the soul without the 
operation of God. There is indeed some difficulty 
attending the discussion of this subject. For the more 
spiritual any work of God is, the more remote will it 
fiecessarily be found from human comprehension* Oi^r 

S^mr compsures this isflaeace to tlie qierati(»;i of tbt 
iraid, wlacli of all the pkenomei^i <A nature^ is the 
kast ai^dMniUe io its essence, an4 the most aenslUa 
IxL its dfects^ ^^ The wind bloweth where it listeth^ 
^ and thou bearest the sound tiiereof, but canst noti^eU 
^^ whence it cometh, and whitiher it gdrth ^ 4io is eveiy 
^ <mr that is born of the spirit'' The doctrine ha> 
also bfsien muc^ abased, it has often been so man? 
aged) as feo make the ipimer^ while in his natural state, 
to ;q)pear unls^unate rather than criminal, and to 
render the use of means and exwtions neecQoBip Tht 
«acred writers do not inform ^s where, precisely, dili- 
gence and dq>endence fnite, or how they hi^nd through 
the whole course of the christian life ; but they assure 
(OS of the reality and th« constancy of their union ; 
they inform us that there is no inconsistency between 
the command and the promise ; that it is our duty as 
imSl as privilege, to «*be filled trith the spirit j** 
and that we are to ^^ work ovt ^ur oio^n salvation with 
^ fear and tremUing ; for it is God that worketI» 
^^ in us to wHl and to do of his own good pleasure." 

This being premised, we proceed to establish the 
doctrine we have advanced. And the proof is by no 
means difficult ; it is as simple and obvious, as it i3 
convincing. For if " all things are of God,'* i$ religion 
%o be excluded, and to form the only exception? 
Springs up ^ the river of the water of life*' from a 
source on thiis side ^ the throne of God and of the 
** Lamb ?*' If in him we Eve, and move, " and have 
** our*^ natural " being/* do we derive from an infe- 
rior principle our spiritual life ?-— a life sublimely called 
^ the fife of God,'' torenund us qf its ori^, 9s weQ 

^. it.j th i^ftw* tfGem^ Jlfiilisi0ifc ^ 


m of ^ resemblance ? If the dbooi;r«rie8 which &amik 
w with the accommodatioBsr afftdcoaveuetiees of htt« 
* pfjui life ; if the skill of the hu Auidtium^ and tha wiiu^ 
<|Dm of the medianiC) be in scripture ascribed to hb* 
influence } who ^es 11$ the genhts to fii^e ^moAf^ 
imd to have ^^ o«r cc»iTerMition in hesven ?*^ The ea^«i 
]^esstoiis ^ to fap born agplb ^' to ibe ^ made 1 new 
*« creatuire j*'^ tk> be *^ taised from the dead^'^ afiplioi' 
to the sut^e^b ctf divine .grace, ate aUowed to be^ 
metaphorical ;• but tbey are deaignod toooaveywtntlhti^ 
9fid to teacji tis, not only tiie greacoess of the change^ 
but also" the Author* U i^itgion were tf huamn pro*- 
ifefUon) it woyld wear the pesesablalDce of man ; it 
would not be the reverse of all he ndw is« After what 
llbe scriptuire hath said respediiig the total depravity of" 
li;ttxnan nature, and which by experience md obaerva»- 
tiion we find every day to be tnxQ itt fadr; nothing; 
Jon be more wonderful th» to find any of tb^ 
4:^ildren of men possesnng true ho&iess; soul the 
I ^pi^tion is, how it came there ? It could not spring: 

^ £rom thems^es, fbr ^' who can bdog a dean thing 

^ out of an unclean V* No eSk& can exceed its cause ^ 
and an inadequate cause is no cause. Whence then 
does it proceed ? « To the law, and to the testimopy.*^ 
The scripture asmres us it is the woi^ of Go4, and 
leads us to trace back the grand whole, and the sepa- 
-rate parts ; the perfeftion, the progress, the com. v 
•mencement of reli^on in the so^, to a divine agency. 
^ Who are born, not of Wood, nor qf the will of the 
« flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" **He 
** that hath wrbyghl us for the self $ame thing is God, 
^;Whp hath also fgs&Oi unto us the ^i^rneet of the 

•< Spirit/' "By grace are yc saved tfaroygh £iidi j 
" and that dot of yourselves, it is the gift of. God ^ 
^^ not of works^ lest any man should boast : for we are 
^ his workmanship, treated in Christ Jesus unto good 
^^ works, which God hath before ordained that we 
" should walk in them/' 

Nor' is this a curious, or useless speculation. The 
importance of it equals the evidence^ To know things 
ill their causes has been deemed the highest Idnd of 
knowledge ; to know salvation in its source is neces* 
sary. First to guide and to encourage the concern o£ 
awakened sinners^ who are asking, " Men and breth- 
"renj what fliall we do ?" Such person^ will not 
cheerfully and courageously enter on a course of god* 
liness, without an assurance of effectual aid. Seeing 
so many difficulties and* dangers before them,* and 
feeling their corruption and weakness, after a few un« 
successful struggles, they will sink down in hopeless 
despair ; unless, with a sense of their own inability, 
you shew them that grace which is sufficient for them, 
and meet them in their conviction with the promise, 
*' Ask, and it ihaU be given you : seek, and ye shall find ; 
^ knock, and it shall be opened unto you : for if ye^ 
^^ being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your 
** children, how much more' shall your heavenly Father 
^' give his holy Spirit to them that ask him !** Tliis 
decides ; this animates. ^ The grace of the proniise 
^< is adequate to the duty of the command. 'Does the 
^^ work to whij:h I am called, look fitter for an angel, 
^* than for a man i I have more than an angel's re- 
^' sources ; my sufficiency is of God. Without him I 
^^ can do nothing ; but through his strengthening of me, 

SxR. IV.3 316^ Nature cf Genuine Religion. ^a 

♦* I can do all things." Secondly, The same discovery 
is necessary to call forth the acknowledgments, and to 
regulate the praises of those who ar^ sanAified by divine 
grace. The original cause determines the final end. 
If their recovery originate from themselves, it may 
terminate in themselv^ ; and being the authors of the 
cure, they may lawfully appropriate the glory arising 
from it. But the gospel assures us, that God has com* 
pletely excluded boasting; that he has arranged the 
whole economy of our salvation, with the express 
view " that no jBesh should glory in his presence." An 
experience of divine truth delivers a man from that 
ignorance and' pride, which once led him to think of 
being his own saviour : he feels that " by the grace of 
^ God, he is what he is ;** thus he is reduced again 
to the proper condition of a creature j lives a life of 
dependence and of prsuse, and acknowledges his obli. 
gations to "Him, of whom, and through whom, 
^* and TO whom are all things." We have seen the 
ori^n of religion, fiehold, 

II. The disposition which it produces. It is charac- 
terized by its uniformity, its novelty, and its sensibility. 
•• I will pve them one heart, and I will put a new 
^ spirit within you ; and I will take the stony heart 
^' out of their flesh, and I wiU give them an heart of 

Fir^t, He promises to give them onb heart $ and 
this shews the sameness of religion, as to the lead- 
ing views, sentiments, and pursuits of christians. Of 
the converts at Jerusalem it is said, " the multitude of 

^ theni that believed were of one heart, and of one 



74 The Nature of Qenuine ReHgm. {;Sj£r. itv 

^^ soul.'' I>\sding the some wants, and attraded to the 

same source of rdlef, they assembled and Uended to* 

l^etfaer j they had many hearts before j they . ** fol* 

** lowed divers lusts and pleasfui-es ;" they " turned 

** every man to his o^m\ way/' From these various^wan* 

dermgs they are called to enter, •and to travel one ^d 

the same way. Grace produceda. unity, and a unity 

it always will produce. But a unity of what ? Of opin- 
ions I Of forms and ceremonies ?. Of dress and phra* 

siKikigy ^ No I but of something infinitely superior j 

i oneness of reliance;, of incltnatton; of taste; of 

hopes and fears ; of joys and sorrows. Though divided 

and distinguished from each other by a thousand pecu- 

liarideSf they all hate sin, they all '^ hunger and 

^'thirst after righteousness^" they all follow ^'hard 

^^ after God," they all feel the spiritual life to be a 

warfare, they all confess themselves to be only 

^^ strangers and pilgrims upon earth." . Thus with cir- 

cumstantial diversity we have essential identity ; the sub* 

stance as unalterable, as the modes are various ; th/^ 

dress changing with times and places ; the figure, the 

members, the soul, always the same, ^'For by one 

*< spirit, we are all baptized into one body, whetlioi: 

*' we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free j 

^* and have been all made to drink into one Spirit/' 

He engages also to produce. 

Secondly, A new sprit : " and I will put a new 
•* spirit within you," not only diflferent from that which 
still animates others, but distinguished from that which 
once influenced them ; it was not born with them ; 
they were once strangers to it'; but designed for a 
new world, new work, new pleasures, it is necessary 

Bm. ivO Ttt Nature ^ Gimdne MeUghiL %S' 

for them to liave a new sgint. £lef\radon wHl ooly* 
serve to embarrass and encumber a man, uidesft be ia 
sBited to it. A king may advance a flave to a station 
^ eminence » but with a change of condition, he CM» 
not give him a change of di^Kwition ; with his new- 
office, he cannot bestow a new spirit. But in thi» 
manaei, tlie Lord qualifies his people for their situa- 
tion and engagements ^ and thus they are at home 
in them > there is a suitablene^ psodudive of ease and 
enjoyment. This is the peculiar glory of the gospel* 
Observe all false religions ;. they lake man is he* k ; 
they accommodate themsehes to hia en:ors and hts^ 
pnssiens ; they leave him essentially the same. Th2 y 
fottow the man, they are formed after his likeness;, 
whereas here the mai/ chsuigss ; he is modelled altec 
the image of religion. The gospel, instead of flatter^ 
kig, tells hhn, ^lat nothing b to be done while he re« 
Chains as he now is ; that in his. present state, he is in«. 
cflipabie of perfcnrming its duties^ and' of relishing^ ite 
joys ; that he must be transformed^ or he ^ cannot 
<S enter iato.the kingdom oi God/' And wha^it ki^ 
dispensahlyr requires, it provides for and secures ; hence^ 
aM is oi^er and harmony, i'or. every thing, in the sub-^ 
lime dispensation of the gpspel, and the constitution of 
the cbristiaa church, is N£w; we have^'^a n£W cove« 
'^ n^ut ;'' we have a '^ K£W Jerusalem, which is the 
" mpth^r of us all :" " we approach God. by a. new 
** and a living way :** we aing " a njew song;" we are 
called by *^ a nsw name ;'' ^' according to his promise, 
*[ we look for hew heaveny, and. a mew earth, where. 
^< in dwdUeth righteousness ;" ^* He th^t sltteth up* 
^^ on the tlyoae, saitb, behold I create all things 

*^Nfiw.'' Do yoa wonder tbenrfore, mj brethren^, 
that we are rehired to ^^ put off llie old man with his 
*< deeds; and to put on die new man;'' .lx> ^'walk 
«« 10 NEWNESS of life ;" to serve him ia " the KEW»r 
^^ NESS of the Spirit, and not in the oldness of the let* 
^^ tet i^* that we are assured ^^ that neither ctrcamcisiod 
^* ayaifeth any thing, nor undrconidsiont but a new 
^^ creature ?'' and ^^ that if any, man be in Christ, he 
is a NEW creature;'' that <^old things Jare passed 
awa)^ a^d behold all things are become hew ?" 

Thirdly, He giv^ ^*them a& heart of flesh/' ft' 
w^ a heart ^f ^^ stone" before. Take a stone, feel it^' 
how cold ! Strike it, it resists the blow. Lay upon k 
a burden, it feels no pressure. Apply a seal, it re- 
ceives no impression. Such were your hearts cmce^ 


thus cold, impenetrable, ^senseless, unyielding, and ua« 
susceptible. What a mercy is it to have this curse re- 
moved, and to have ^^ hearts of flesh 1" to be able to feel; 
to feel spiritually ; Xo be alive to '''the powers of the 
"^ world to come i" to be no longer insensible to divine 
and heavenly things, when they come in contad: with 
us ! And remember, christians, this holy sensibility is 
evidenced, not only by yonr pleasing emc^ons, but also 
by your distressing ones. . Tour tears of sorrow indi* 
cate sensation, as well as your tears of joy. Is not 
pain a proof of feeling? Yes, the christian's heart is 
"an heart of flesh." Bring it to the word of God, it 
feels. " My heart,** says David, ** standeth in awe of 
"thy word." He "trembles at thy word," says 
Isaiah. He opens it with reverence; he bows to .its 
authority; he often compares himself with its de- 
mands { he reads the charader and doom of apostates. 

and turos pale ; he dreads its threateniiigs, stnd IcMoge 
for an interest in Its protmses 1 O how many feefings 
will' one sermon set in motion ! 

Bring it to sin, it feels. A tender conscience, like 
the eye, is oflTended with a mote. A dead corpse is 
onaffiected with the deepest wound ; the point of a 
needle makes the fiving body to writhe. While others 
do not groan, though charged with heinous crimes, 
the christian complains even of infirmities, of wander* 
ingthoughts, of earthly affections ; and a look from his 
offended Lord, will thake him *^ go out and weep 
« bitterly/* 

Bring it to the dispensations of Providence, it feels* 

My flesh trembleth for fear of thee, and I am afraid^ 

of thy righteous judgements.'' Or does he prosper ? 

He is no stranger to a fear, lest ** his table should be* 

^^ come a snare, and a trap, and a stumbling block, and 

" a recompence unto'him.*' 
Bring it to the divine glory. It feels. ** Rivers of 

** waters run down mine eyes, because men keep not' 


Bring it to the concerns of oth^s, it feels. ** He 
** weeps with them that weep, tte considers them 
^ Aat are in adversity, as bound with them.'* " Who 
**is weak, and he is not weak? who is offended, 
** and he burns not ?'' For a tender heart is always 
accompanied with a tender hand, and a tender tongue.' 
Such is the disposition which is formed in all the 
subjects of £vine grace ; and why is it produced ? 
To enable us to observe the whole revealed will of 
^od, in a course of cheerful and active obedience. 

7f- TJi^ NfiiiKt^Q^imi^ Meff^m l$mm 

; fll« Briiigi^ us to obeei^ ik» i^hactic^ wImIi it* 
l^on dsnuiids ; ^* Ti^t (hey mty WAI4K m my staiw 
'* UTS8, and K£bp mine ouaHANOAt, and 00 them." 
1% is 8trai|gaii tb»t a system of reKgk>i| should be ertr 
ay)v^ce4« which if it; qomprelieQd obe4ienf:e and gOQ4 
ifcnrlp %t 2)11, places them ^^ ^ ▼^^IT iufvior situation i 
apems always afraid to .brii^ them forward } dares not 
hold them forth as th$ end and perfection of the whol^i^ 
to which every thing pls^ le;^^ snd in which every 
^ng.else is tQ terminate } or insist 04 thptr beii^ so- 
essentially nefress^iry, t||at without them 4U oifr ppetem 
sions to godliness are vain* But in thb dedsive muLn 
nfr does hs speak pf them, ^' who came to bear wit-^ 
*? ness to the truth.** " Not every one thait saith unto 
^ ine» Lord, Lord, shjill enter into the kingdom of 
«* heaven ; but he that doeth the viU of my Fath«ir 
*♦ who is in heaven." " If ye know these things, happy 
^ are ye if ye do them/* '^ He that bath my comt 
H mamliiieQts, and i^^epbth them/ he it is tlutt ix^tv- 
*J|- ETij me/' 

But is it not equally absurd to expect this prad;i<;e 
W^ere there is nothing to. secure it ? or to suppose that 
a nvm*$ lUe will be in perpetual contradiction to all his 
lyas and incUnatiotts ! « Do men gather grapes of 
•^thorns, or figs of thistles ? Even so every good tree 
^ bjringeth forth good fru^t j but a corrupt tree bring- 
« eth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring 
*• Itvth evil fruit : neither can a corrupt tree bring ftjrtlj 
*^ gopA fruit/* In order, therefore, to do justice to. this 
part of our subject, I would state two remark?, which 
we hope you will always remember and unite. Fi^t, 
principle must precede practice. Secondly, practice 
most follow principle. 

Sml. ivO Tie Matire ^ (knuim JMigiotu . T« 

FiiBt, Obserre the 6r<!ter in wkich these things «t 
Mfasged ^ I win gl^e them one heart, and I vrOt 
^ put a new qNrit within you : and I wiD take the stony 
^ heart ont of their flesh, and will give them an heart 
•^ <tf flesh ^ THAT they may walk in isfy statutes, and 
^ keep mine ordinances, and do them." Thm prinF 
opfe precedes practice, and {prepares for it. And 
l^ere I admire the ^aa of the go^l } to make the 
fyitit good« it makes the tree so ^ to cleanse the stream^ 
itwpunfies the fountain ; it renews the nature, and the 
life becomes holy oi cowae^ What k the refij^km at 
too many i They are like maciiine» impelled by force i 
they are influenced only by ^^temal considerations. 
Their hearts are not engaged. Hence in every reli« 
gious exercise they perf o rm a task. They would love 
God much better, if hn would esccuse them from the 
l^ateful obUgation* They put off these duties as long 
as possiUe, resort to them with reluctance, adjust the 
measure with a niggardly gradge, and are glad of any 
excuse for neglect. While labouring at the drudgery, 
thipy. entertain hard thoughts of the cruel Taskmaster, 
w^ can impose such severities vqpon them, and sigh in- 
wardly ^* when will the sabbath be over V* When shall 
we unbend from these spiritual restraints, and fed 
ourselves at liberty in the world ? Can this be religion i 
Is thrice any thing in this, suitable to the nature of God, 
" who is a Spirit ?" or to the demands of God, who 
cries, ** My son, give me thine heart j'* " serve the 
Lord with gladness, and come before his presence 
with singing ?'' Behold a man hungry, he needs no 
argument to induce him to eat. See that mother, she 
nee^s no mptive to determine her to cherish her dar« 


The Nature of Getmhie Religion. - [Susl. iv« 

Ung babe ; nature impels* The obedience of the clnrif- 
tiau is natural, and hence it is pleasant and invariable $ 
^ lie runs and is not weary, he walks and is not fadnt.** 
Secondly, It is equally true .that pradice muft foBow 
{cindple. The one is the necessary consequknce 
of th%^ other. This influence will operate ; if it be 
fire, it will burn ; if it be leaven, it will pervade and 
affimilate ; if it be in us '^ a wefll of water," it will 
<^ spring up into everlafiing life." The one is the 
proper evidknce of the other. The cause is ascer^ 
tained by tl^ etkA. It is not necessary to lay open 
the body of a tree, to determine by the grsdn, to which 
dass it belongs t there is an easier, and a surer mode 
of judging } ** the tree is known by its fruitSi" Some, 
while leading very indifferent lives, tell us their hearts 
are good ; but goodness in the heart will appear in 
fhelife; a good consdence will always be accom- 
panied with a good conversation ; and though faith 
juftifies the soul, works justify faith-^** shew me thy 
^ faith without thy works, and 1 will shew thee my fidth 
^ by my works." Tlie one is the chief recommshda- 
TiON of the other. It is by practice only you can 
ihew the value of prindple. Your views and feelings 
are beyond the reach of others ; your experience is 
invisible ; but it is otherwise with your actions ; these 
come under their observation ; and they can form an 
estimate of your religion, by the excellency of its in- 
fluence. And when your fives correspond with your 
profession ; when you are *• followers of God as dear 
•* children ;*' when you are humble in prosperity ; 
cheerful in adversity j ready to foi^ve ; wiOlngto bear 
one another's burdens; attentive to the dvties of 

fiXR. IV.] The Nohare rf Qentttfu Rdigmu %l 

your station, and uiriJamable in every rehflion ; you 
are perpetually magnifying your region ; you << adorn 
**the dodxine of God your Saviour; you "put to 
^ silence the ignorance of foolish men ;" you some* 
times allure them, according to the inftru6tive admo- 
nition of our Saviour, ** Let your light so shine birfore 
^ men, that they may s£e tour good ^^orks, and 
•* glorify your Father which is in heaven.^ 
And with what is all tUs connected ? "They shafl be 
iny people, and I " will be their God.^ This shews us. 

IV. The Uessed frivu.eob of tben^t^oos. .For 
bere we are to cpateaaphte th^ hooour »d tMir hi^ 
fBHoas ; every thi^ depemb upon this nl^ikm* ^^ gbw 
^< ed are the people tiiat are in such a case» y^ ^u^PVY 
^ is that pe^de whose God is the Lord/' 

* When ^ God gave prosnisp to Abraham, because 
^ He could 9we«r by no greater, Hesware by himself ;^ 
whoi jbe wofuld bkss. his peqde, because He could giine 
then no greater. He gsnre binoMlf* They are aU a 
<tf Lisviteay for <^ the Lord is their inheritance;*' 
U ^' a goodly^ ooe.; it ^ gu^es grace and g^ry, 
no good thing does'* it ^^ withhold from them 
^^that walk uprightly/' <Ut is profitable unto sdl 
^' things, having promise of the life that now i8,and of 
^ thait which is to Qome/' 

Consider the n^eaniog of the language* It is more 
than if He said, I w^l be thy friend, thy helper, thy 
benefiiftor y fiw these are iselations derived from csea- 
turea, and therdEbte notions of limited significancy. 
But wh^ Ht says, "^ I will be thy God,'' He takes^an 

itaMft irom HkfeMlf, and euages to do us good »• 



89 the N^isre 0/ G^Hume RtkgiM. [Sm. m 

CQfdii^ Co the all-sufficiency oi an infinite nature ; Xq 
|)estow upon us blessings which are peculiar to Deity ; 
to do for .us what Deity alone An do, and to do it di^ 
Yiutv^ i to pardon, and to pardon like a God ; to 
MoS^f and to saii&jly £ke a God } to comfort, and 
.10 coniibTt like a God ; to gkurify, and to glorify like 
a God} God appearing all along, in the manner, as 
wdl as in the mercy^ 

Consider abo the nature of the dbtni. He is reaU 
.ly youfs* In nothing «3s^ have you such a propriety. 
Your time Is toot your own } your riches are not your 
^mU ; ydur ehildrefn are not your o\^n ; your bodies, 
txiA your spirits, are not your own ; Wit God is yours 
by abs()hite' promise and <ionfition ; and you tnay join 
"vHtk the tburdi df old, and&y, " God, even our own 
* God, shall Mess us/* And He is whoDy yours ; all 
He is, all He possesses } the perfections of his nature^ 
the dispensatioHS of his providence, the Mefi^gs c^ his 
salvation^ the treasures of his word, adl are become 
your t)wn ; and what BenhaKkd said to the king of b- 
tad^ and what the Either of the prodigal said to the 
elder brother, Ood says to each of you, ^^ I am thine, 
** and all that I have :" "Son, thou art ever Mrith me, 
•* and aU that I have is thine/' And He is yours for ever ; 
tbe.tfnion^is indissoluble; his duration is the tenure of 
your bliss ; as long as He lives, He wHl be your God. 

Once more ; Consider the final issue of the connec- 
tion. The relation is intended to display the immensity 
-of his benevolence, and of his muhificence towards his 
people. It does mudi fot them here ; and when they 
iTdk^ upbn their original mealiness, and continued 
miiK^rdiiness,' and consider what they have received^ 

8«R. rv.] The Nature of Genuine Religion. §8 

tliejr are filled with iivonder, and cscclaisiv '' Wkat 
^ tmnn^r of love ta thb !'* << what fihall I render. to thr 
ff Locd for . aH Us beyttifits tpwafds loe 1'' But '^.tliey 
«< ajxall 9W gz^ter th^gs tiiM theses" They have n&»k 
iMly ^ the first Ihuts of th^ Spirit ^" ^^ fihe^mrnen: of 
^s their ifiheritaajce/* Their dflkxm, with God is o& 
ten fiDOcealed from others, and from. tlmMei'ves i mi 
ifae advantages il pwdiises, 19 Qroions^Mribed .hy the 
vorld in which jure. Jive, and the body of this ^kathf 
it has not room in wjtiich to opentei lor.iim^^ifi whidt 
to expandi' We are th«etois»ledm^lp^ jforward^ 
and vrhat ^e apoftle 8ay». vich* cef^vd txi! the.paKiif 
trchs, will apply, to all iiis piK^ple ; ^^ .wherefcire -694 
^' is npt aflamed tQ iie isU^d their God» ,for he bathr 
^< prepared fw them A 4ty*". What an intimation^ 
his infinite goodness is here j He would he afltam^d oil ' 
the f elatji^ ifUxi wUch He has entered^ if .He epufei^ 
red no more upen his follow^s than the^ benefits th«|B^ 
derive from Him on earth. Behold then, an eterQit;)^ 
succeeding time j a new syftem prepared ^ receive 
them i an happiness in res^^e, of which they eat now. 
£n:m no adequate tonc^tioni When Ife has loc* 
changed their dungeonfcHr a palaoe; when He has 
^ Wiped away aU tears.frcnn tb^ eyes ;" when. He has 
eased every pain > fulfilled evsery defire^ realised evepy> 
hope ; when He has chSinged ^^ this vile .body/' and 
faihioned it like the ^^ gjlorioos body'' of the Saviour ; 
when He has entirely .expelled sin firpm their nature^ 
and presented them, '. ^^ ^ultless 4>^ore the preseoi^ 
" of his glory with exceeding joy,'* then the chart 
ader will be fyiUy displayed, and the relation conv- 
pletely juftified ; and all hell and heaven will exclaim. 

84 TA» KMure ^ Gmume MOigum. [Ska. i^. 

«<H« has not deceived diem, Hh km been theit 

~-I divide this assemUy into three dasses ; and, ii%t, 
I address those who are careless dF this blessed rehtion; 
Sncii weare many of the Jews of did; ^Israel,'' says 
God, ^ would have none dF me/' And yon are of 
the same nnmber. Ton say by your a^6ns, if not by 
yonr words^ ^ depart from w, for vre desfare not thA 
^ knowledge of thy ways.'^ Tou are asking, ^ who 
^ wiH shew us any good?*' but yvs do^aot, and you 
kiMNtr you do not, pray, ^ Lord, Hit than up the lig^t 
^ of thy oountenance upon me." But is it » vsdn 
thfaig to seek God, or to serve Ifim f AUowuig oilMr 
thhigs to be valuable, are they to bo oomparad wkh 
God, who is the portion of his people i But they are 
notvahiaUe; they cannot give svtisifUSttoin ; theykavk 
a vmd unfilled; they ca*not eaae th« anguish of a 
troubled oonscience, sustain the soul in trouble, or sub- 
due the fear of death ; they fitU in those seasons and 
circumstances, in which you most need their aid* 
And for these, will you bastard the loss of the supreme 
good? Will yon ^^foUow lying vanities, and forsake 
** your own merdes ?" *^ Have the workers of iniquity 
*^ no knoudedge?" Now you know not the magnitilde 
of your loss. Tou are not aware of the full meaning 
of the word ^ depart ;" go from the God <tf life, go 
from the Source of all consolation, go from all mercy 
and gmee for ever. Now you are not abandoned to 
refte^ticm ; you are busied, and entertained } and 
tlufH|[h not satisfied^ you are diverted. But, 

-^O ye guf dreatners of gay dreams^ 
How win you iraather an eternal mght, 
Whtie sQcli expedieiita fidl ? 

SwL. IT.] Tti N^nm tfQmfn$i Udij^ %$ 

AliMistQbeQiefisiiiipdVytlic ^MMthoif the tUbg im 
km; andyoD lose God! Other losses may be cov* 
Ycclwe, bBtthi9kdeihniGt«ir§«.olkei:l9s«Q»ii^^ 
fii^sQ^ but this. oi4yb€s£iB8 eii^q^ other Ipspes sm9 
be wtrier^ itw is irr^amUe. Is He wilU«g:t0b»r 
come ipine ? He is ; He . cwdesceii^ lo expostulate^ 
to U^inite, to pf^s ; *^ Wherefoije do ye ^^tm4 mooef 
^< i^r.thet which is.siot br9%i» and your labour i6>r thet 
«< mrhich satitittth not \ hearlmn diligently vmk me» 
^ wtt eat ye thet which is good^ i^ )e(your scml d»> 
*^ iigitf itsd£ in £ttnesa: udiiie your wr, and com 
^^nttone;; hear, ^nd yenr aeiil shell U?e ( yidlwitt 
^^ midbe eor eroriasttog oiyeaeot with yoir ^^ the 
'< sive menieaof I^tavid.'' ^ Seek ye the I^ird wh]]||S 
^ he iMy be fi)und.i call n^oii him wl^le be is near.'' 

8eceii^5 I would address those who are of a doubt* 
%A xiiitid. Ik»r whale sooie chmi-the rdation, to whom 
it does not bdong; some, to whom it bekngi, are 
afifttld to cfa^ it. Now tbb is lameiitable ;* for if 
Geii be yOurs^ and yo^ know it not, you sustain a 
Tast lo$ bf consolation. Besides, it is ppssible for y6u 
to obtain ^ a good 'hi6pe through ^ptce.'^ Tfie [urom^ 
ase. tni()lies a possilMty of decision ; ^ They shall call 
^ h|x>n my name, and I ^viU hear them : I wiH sav it 
^iimyp^]$de; smd they shall sat the Lord is vt^ 
♦' God.*' Audi ^y cannot you ss^y this ? Have you 
^tosd^edconnectioh with the world, and taken ^' hold 
^of the shin of him that is a Jew, saying, I wiU go 
** wiA you, fcr I have hea«d that (5od is with you ?• 
€^ you eas&f make the language of his prayidg jMf 
lowers your own \ and is thi^ the essenqe of every de*. 
4ire you fed ? ^< Rememb^ me, O Lord, with ^le 


86 The Nature tf Getudne Rilighn. [$£&% i¥# 

s ■ 

* £ivottr thou bearest to thy people : O visit lae witk 
^ thy salvation ; that I may see the good of thy chose&j 
^ that I may rejoice in the goodness of thy natkH^ 
^that I may g^ry vdth thine iaheritance/' When^ 
your minds rove throu^ the univ^^ ilnding no sub» 
•titute for Him/do you come back and ask» ^ where k 
? God my maker, who giveth songs in the i^^ i^ 
Jifter comparing communion wkh Hip to every olher 
conceivable good, can you say, ^ whom hatve I in beiveii 
^ but Thee, and there b none upon earth that I desire 
^^ besides Thee i"^ When the iiQdbQitsadors of « certain 
nation came to the RooEians, offering to be their' allies, 
^^ and were refused, they said, W^, if we cannot be youf 
allies, we will be your sul^ects i we will not be youf 
enemies.^ Can you say. Lord, I wiH be thine ; I will 
sot be mine own ; if I am not received as a irieod, I 
will be a servant ; I never can be tky foe ? And ykm 
are wishing to beaUeto ^ say He is my Clod/' . Wh^ 
you have said it ; having thus chosen Him, be asswed 
he has chosen you ; having thus given yowaelves tp 
Him, be ussured He has given HinMelf to yo9 } if TfW 
are thus Hb, be .assured He is youcs. 

Thirdly, Are there none in the divine pveeence, wi» 
are enabled to say, as the language both of devotion 
and of confidence, ^' my Lord, and my God l^ Fbl* 
low the example of the church, publish the fame of 
His goodness, and animate others to join ycm in praising 
Kiim. ^ Behold God is my saivatbn, I will trust and 
^ not be afraid; for the Lord lebovah is my strength 
^ and my song, he also is become my salvMicm.'^ 
Plead your interest in Htm in aH your dangefs, uc^ 
bles, and necessities. Envy none their wordly dift- 


tinotioDs } remember your pre-eminence ; " yott are 
<*the sons and daughters of the Lord almighty/* Do 
aot complain because they may possess things, of which 
yoo are deprived ; you have a God, they have none j 
jM can sustain a loss uninjured, they would beuiv^ 
done ; it would be taking away their all. If your ta. 
per be exdnguisbed, you have a sUn i but when ^ the 
« caadk of the wicked is put out,** they are involved 
tt darkness, ^^ darkness that may be felt.* Honour 
J0K God by tiving upon his fol&ess, and endeavour- 
ing by £nth to reafiae in Mm, every thing you seek 
fer, in vain, in yourselves, or in creatures. Observe 
the address of Mosbs to the braelhes, ^ What nation 
*^m there wo great, who hath God so nigh unto 
«*diem, as the Lord our God is in all tilings that we 
<« call upon him for ?** They were an inconsiderable 
body, confined in a wilderness, the arts and sciences^ 
and commerce, were all with their enemies ; they had 
the same ntment they wore out of Egypt forty years 
before ; and had no provision for a single day. But 
their peculiar greatness arose from their nearness 
to God. In having Him they had all ; He possessed, 
and could immediately produce the supplies their ne- 
cessities required; they had only to ask and have« 
When Dkavid was phindered, and stripped of alfhe had 
in Ztgbtg } it is said, he *^ encouraged himsdf in the 
*^ Lord his God"--HE was left. Thus a christian who 
has nothing, pbssessca all things. Creatures may aban- 
don him, but his God will never lea ve nor forsake him. 
Friends may die, but the Lwd liveth. Hb << heart and 
'''faifl fleih may fail, but God is the ftrength of his 
^^ heart, and his portion forever.^' '« The heavens may 

The Vlatwre^ GemUne Rgligion. (Suu ir. 

^ pstts away Vidth a great noise, and the dements mdt 
^ with fervent heat, the earth and the works that 
<^are therein may be burned up^'^-^he stands up* 
en the aflies of a imiverse^ and exclaims, I have lost 

** » 

* ■ >><■ ' ' ' ' — .u— ■;— *u— ^a;.;— — ^MJ— — ^wMMMafart^ . i ■ i ^gg: 

S E R M ]Sf V. 


/ FEAR tBE Lord prom mr routx, 

THESE ^^ ^^^ words of dbadiah^ 
From his situation and office, he appears to have been 
a person of some distin^on, for ** he was the ^verhor' 
^ of Ahab's house.'' But what we admire in hiin, and 
with which only we have to 60j is the pi^y that mark- 
ed his charadlen "He feared the Lord greatly;" 
and gave evidence of it in a season of extreme dang^ : 
^'for he took an hundred prophets, and hid them by 
^* fifty in a caVe, and fed them with bread arid water.*' 
And as his refigion was rapefior in its degree, so it was 
early in its comfaiencem^nt. For, says fee, in his ad- 
dress to Elijah, "I fear the Lord FROiii my youth.'' 
And herein, my yoUrig friends, we propose him thisf 
evening as your example. In your imitation of himv 
many are concern^, though none a£re so 'deeply in- 
terested as yourselves. 

—The preacher who addressers you is concerned^ 
He longs " after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ.'* 
tndeed if ministers desire to be useful, they cannot be 

\ • 

dd The Toung Admoiusbed. [Sbbl. ^i^ 

ipdiffbreAt to yoc. You would prove their beft help- 
ers ; you would rouse the careless j you would re- 
prradi those of riper years ; you would decide the 
wavering young. It is in your power to build up ouf 
churcheSi and to change the moral fcice of our neigh-^ 
tx)urhood. ^The wilderness, and the solitary place, 
" shall be made glad fc»-" you, " and the desert shall 
tejoice, and blossom as the rose." 

— 'B^ld standing n^^ar youx preacher, youi' friends,, 
your relarioifis, your parents, hearing for you with 
tTOTibling, and pray«r«, and tears. Thy father is say- 
iiig, ** my son, if thou be wise, my heart shall rejoice^ 
« evtti mifie.'' The woman who bare thee is saying, 
" What, xpy son, and what the son of iny womb^ and 
** what the son of my vows T' 

— Behpld too your fellow^itizens, your couatry- 
men. I imagine all those assembled here this even- 
iflg, with whom you aye to have any future connections 
by friendship, by alliance, by business ; whose kin^ 
dred you are to espouse, whose offices you are to fill 5 
these I ask, is it a matter of indifference, whether the 
rising generation be infidel and immoral, or influence^ 
by conscience, and governed by Scdpture ? Where 
is the person, who has any regard for the welfare of 
the nation, for social order, for relative Ufe, for per- 
son?l happiness, who would not immediately exclaim, 
« Rid me and deliver me from the hand of strange 
« chUdren j whose mouth speaketh vanity, and their 
*' right hand is a right hand of falsehood : that our sons 
^y may beas plants grown up in their youth } and that 
«9u^ daughters may be as corner stones, polished 
•« after the sftadlitude of a pahce.** -< 

jSsR* vO The Toung Jtdmonished. ^ 

*— Behold the Idessed God looldftg down firom 
lieaven, blending his daims with your welfare, and urg- 
ing the language of i^mmand, and of promise : ^' Re- 
** member thy Creator in the days of thy youth ;** 
^* they that seek me early, shall find me/' These are . 
parties concerned in the success of this endeavour. But^ 
xny young friends, there are charadlers here more* 
deeply interested than all these ; they are yourselves. 
To be pious in early years, is to be " wise for your- 
** SELVES.:" it is your privilege, ihalll say, more thai| 
your duty ? Yes, the gain wlU be principally your own# 
How shall I convince you of this ? How shall I make 
^ou feel the importance of it ? We shall take three, 
views of the subjeft. We shall consider youth as 


Part* I. If unhappily the wickedness of any of our 
older hearers should have rendered infidelity necessary, 
and they should have abandoned a system hostile only to 
fln ; we are " persuaded,** my young friends, " better 
^* things of yoli/* We presume that you are all ready 
to acknowledge the importance of religion, and' that 
if any of you were asked whether you had resolvecjf 
never to pursue it, but in the negleft of it to live and 
die, you would be shocked at the qtleftion. Since! 
then you befieve godliness to be the one thing needful, 
ind determine on a religious course, I would propos^ 
youth as the most favourable season in which to conv 


0Jtr. The Tnmg Jdmonished. [Ser. y# 

It iSy %st', a period which presents the fewest obsta*- 
des* It is far from my design to In^d fofth real religion - 
as an easy thing at any period of life. *I believe the 
do^ine of human depravity ; I knOw the imaged the 
3acred writers employ to describe the arduous nature 
of the spiritual life ; I hear our Saviour saying, ^' Strive 
^ to enter in at the strait gate ; fox many^ will seek to 
^^ enter in, and shall not be able/ - But if there be 
difficulties, these difficuJries will increase with our 
years ; and the season of youth will be found to con* 
tain the fewest obstacles^ whether we consider your ex- 
ternal circumstances, your natural powers, or ycmr 
moral habits. Now you are mo^ free from those- 
tTQubles which will embitter, from those cares. wfaid) 
will perplex, from those schemes, whidi will engross^^ 
frojp those engagements which will hinder you^ in 
more adv^ced find copne&ed life. Now the body 
possesses health and atrength ; the memory is r^:ep« 
tive anid taaaci^us; the fancy ^ows; the mind is 
lively and . vigD|t>us« Nbw the understgrnding is mote 
doci)e ; it is not crowded with noticms } it has not by 
continue attentiop to one da^ of objeds, received a 
diredion from which it is unable to turn, to contemr 
plate any thin^ else^ without yipjence ; the brain is 
no): impervious; all the avenues iq the inner man 
are aot blod^ped up ; to cu]re a de;^d m^n, ^nd to tead|. 
/ and old o^e, says a heathen philosopher, vce tasks equal-, 
ly hopeless. N9W the SQ|d is capable of deeper and 
more abiding impr^ona j fhe a&£)Miis are mMe 
ipasUy touche4 and movfd j we f^re more accessifaie to 
the influence of joy a^nd 90r):QW» hope a&d^su^i V^* 
fiigaj^e m an (^tarprise w)th msre fgc|KdK>ti0n; tf^d^ 

$iVL v«3 Tie Toung Admomhed. 99( 

dour; 3nd zeal. Evil <fi8positions also grow i^Hltk. 
time, and are confirmed by exerdse* ^^ Can the Eth^ - 
^^ opian change Ms skin^ or the leopard his spots I ' 
<^tfaen may ye also do good, that are accustomed to 
<^ do eiFiL'' A man wishes to eradicate-— is his task like- '^ 
ly to become easier by safieiing the shrub to grow year 
afto: year, till it becomes a tipes, and is so deep rooted* 
as tp defy even a storm ? A diforder has seized the 
body*— common seme says, take it in time, send im- 
madialely for aid ; by continuance it beconies invet* 
erate, 9ad ba£tes ihe skifi and the force of medicine. 
An enemy hs& declared war—aind surely he is no 
frii^d who advises you, instead of advancing forward, 
and ^etsii^ the most advantageous portions, to remain 
Uidfi&vey till the adversary striding, on, gsuns pass after 
pass, wd'fortiftes for himself what he has taken from 
you ; spreads over your territory,, and subsists at your 
e^fp&mi Qr vntb impoverished rBSonroes compels you 
to . fiak every thing aik the issue of one dl^sperate eu-* 
confttes. . YfhQ is the pers9n intended by all these 
seprfsentaticmar of felly i You, O young man, whb by 
your delays are inci earing an hwidf ed fol4 all the ob- 
stadesof a religic^ life« 

Seccmdlyj; The chtys of youth are of all others the 
most honomratde period in which to begfn a course of 
god Kn es S t Under the legal economy, the tirst ^as "^ 
to lieduisen fbf God ; the first bom of man ; the 
FIRST born of beasts; tl^^ first fruits of the field* 
It was an honcmr becomung the God they worshipped, 
^ to serve Him fiift TiAf duty, my young firiends, 
yoi^ atnd yoo aloBQ^ can $piritU2di2e and fulfil, by giv^ 
V^ Hii|i ytbo dfoertf »' all your lives,, the firft born qf * 

,k». *• \ 

94 ' The Thung Admonished. \%Wu y^ 

yMe 6wr%y and the int fryks ef yolir ratsoo^ jadyow 
afijtndons* And nevw wiU you have six:h an , oppose 
Atftity to prove the goodness of yoitf motives^ .«$ you. 
now^ poeseas. ^^ Noir^" says God, "^ I koow that tho« 
^* fearest me ;*' bM see an old mux} what doea^he oC^ 
fer? His ridbea ?-*-t4)ut be can we ^em no aqre* 
Ifis pleasures ?-r-bQt he can enjoy i|mQ no }ongef>< 
His hoooior ?-«^font it is ii^ered on his hrow. Hk 
authority f-^-^imt h has dmpped frosit Iw iteble h,z$xdu 
lie leaves his sins ; b«t it is because they wilt no kyi^ 
ger bear Uiti ccmipany* He flies from the world ^bot- 
it is becanse he is burnt ont. He enters the tempk ;>^ 
bM it is as a sanctn^y 9 it is only ta take hold of the 
iiorns of the akar ; it is a refoge, not a ^lace of dd^ 
"potion he seeks ; and need we wonder if he shioiM< 
hear-a voice from 1^ most ejacelettt glory j ^^ Ye lavei 
^^ brought that ^i^h was torn, and the lame, and the: 
«^ ack: thu» ye broo^t an Offisring : shonld I aiSoe]^' 
^< f hi^ of your hands ? saith the Lord of hosts. Bot^ 
^ cut^ed be the deceiver, who hath in his flock a mstle, 
^* and voweth, and saerificeth linto the Lord a corrupt 
thing : for I am a great king, saith the Lord of host s^^ 
and my name is dreadful among the iMKathen.*^ But 
you who consecrate to Him your youth, you do not 
j}ro£uEiely tell Mm tq suspend his claims till the reft are- 
eerved J till you have satisfied the world and the fleshy 
his degrading rivals. Tou do mit send hmi forth to 
gather among. stubUe the glaasings of life, after the 
eMsny has secured the hsffvesfe. Ten are vtoit 1^ 
tlKise^ who if they reach Immanuel land, are forced 
tiutfaer by} shipwreck ^ ytdasaited timber by intention ;- 
when you weighed anchor,, you thought of it } it wis 




^ th^ fkrir^d liaveo/' You do oot shui^ tlie vorltf 
aiMui long experience of ite vankjr and msr^m ; Imt 
ydQ havB the honor of bdieving the teftimonyof Ood 
concerning it, and of dedding without a trial. Ton: 
do not yield to Crod when every ottber solickor is gone $i 
but y^u adori& him, wbSe yoa are adcMred" by others ; 
abd^ guariUng yoor {Mmion^ and semes, you presaT 
^roagh a thousand alhurementB, saying, ^^ whom htnf 
^' I in heaven but Thee, a&d tlmm \k none «^)on eartb 
^ that \ dean ' besides HhacL^ ReU^na is always aa 
oniaaMMfit ; it doesmet rduse' age, but it tooks exqui* 
sitely attvaictive and suitable when worn by yondi. fe* 
Ibeold, itkale9e;iti8aiwfafife;it djNXirateBwn^^ 
and i^nins. fii th^young, it ft a^ otuuiefiion and a fin* 
yS^'y it unites witbblcxim^ k adds to e^ery aocompfilh^ 
mesty ghres a^ histne to^efesy exctHency, and a charm* 
Id every graosb MsA aa our early years furnish 2f 
season, in wiiich to commence i» niigious Kfe, attend* 
«d with the fewest diffipculdea^ and produdive of the 
hq^lest honour \ so it is^ 

ThircHy, The most profitaMe $ and at no other'pe** 
riod can we begin so advant^ously. It requires no 
hboured reasoning ta prove this. Oidy admit that 
there are innumerable benefits inseparable from reli.^ 
gion, that *^ her ways are ways of pleasantness, anddl 

her paths are peace ;^ that ^^ godliness is profitabte 

unto aB things, having pronrne of the life that now 
*Ms^ and of that wluch is to come }" and the sooner it 
\fi embraced^ the longer will the privilege be enjoyed ; 
ivwy hour is aa hour of loss. Can you be happy tcM^ 
spcm ? Is it disable to ^^feed'' another day '^ upon. 

ashes,*' while ^ ai^el's food'' is {daced within your 



* ». 

ii tibe Ttui^ diminuBid. [8ta< ^* 


View, and ^^in your reach ? If there be iftsutaerakte 
evils iuepankble from sbi; if ^ die way of transgrte^ 
^ SOTS be hard ;'' if there be *^ no peace to the wide- 
^ ed ;''. if ^^the gall of bitterness*' be ccmnected with 
^< the bonds of iniquity ;*' if ^^ the wages of sin is 
'^ death ;'' and *^ these are the true sayings of QoA^* 
then the earlier the deliverance^ the greater the privi-^ 
l0ge. Those who aqyproached our Saviour in the days 
of his flesh, desired an immediate relief from their op^ 
presnng msdadies. B^timeus did not say, ^^ Lord, 
*^ that I msty receive my sight^-'^^t not so soon ; I 
wish to enjoy my blindness some time longer « The 
leper did not say, ^^ Lord, if thoii ^t, thou canst madce 
1 f^ me dean ;''^— and I hope at some future season I 
shall be healed ; but I cannot resign my disease for 
some years. In another case, a poor wanderer, who 
has missed his way in a journey erf importance^ would 
deem it an advantage to be set right speedily* But you 
wish first td go far Istray, though you must retread every 
step, exhausting your strength and your time by your 
return, and in danger of seeing the day end, before 
you have reached the road, in which your journey is 
to begin. Such losses and infuries art occasioned by 
delay ; and where the soul is saved, and sin b pardon- 
*ed, in how many instances are late converts " made 
«^ to possess the iniquities of their youth !" This brings 

Part IL To consider the benefidal influence of 

. early piety over the remainder of your days. Youth 

is the spring of life ; and by thb will be determined 

the glory of summer, the abundance of autumn, the 

$£»• V.3, Tie TiMig AdmmsBed^ 97 

pjroviaMMfrof '^^ter. It is the laormjig of lifr, aftd if 
tiie Son of rigtkt^udness doe^ not dispA the moftl 
firsts and fogs before noon, the whole day genwaVy 
2«nains .overspread and gloomy. It k tfaie seed time ;v 
and '^what a man soweth, that shall he also reap/\ 
Every Uupg of nntibrtance is affected by religion in 
this period of life* , - 

Hety in yoiith will have a good inftnence over your 
bodies, it wUi preserve them from disease and . de- 
iiaroiity. Sin varioudy tends to the injury of health^; 
and often by intemperance the conttitution is so im- 
|wred, that late ref^;ion is unaUe to restore what ear- 
ly religion would ha^e prevented. The unpleasant- 
* naas which you see in many faces, is more. the e&d of 
evil tempers brooding widun, while the features are "* 
forming and maturing, than of any natural defeft. 
After such. disagreeable traits are established, , religion 
comes too late to alter the physiognomy of the coun* 
tenance ; and thus is obliged, however lovely in itself, 
to. wear through life a face corroded with envy, xna- 
lignant with revenge, scowUng with suspicion and dis- 
trjast, or haughty with scorn and contempt- 
Early piety will have a good- inflae3(M;e oyer your ^ 
seeiUfu: concerns. Nothing is so likely to raise a man 
in the wprld. It produces a fitir chara&er; it pro- 
cures confidence and esteem } it pi^cmiotes diligence, 
frugality, and charity ; it attrads the blessing of heav- 
en, which ^^ maketh rich, and addeth no sorrow with 
"it.** **For they that honour me, I will honour.'* 
** Honour the Lord with thy substance, and wkh the 
** first fhiits of all thy increase ; so shaH -thy barns be 
" filled with plenty, and thy presses shall ;psh out 

98 fhe foung Achmnisbedi [Sbr. v. 

^vnth new wine/' "Seek ye first the kingdom of; 
^ God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall* 
*• be added unto you." 

Eariy piety will have a good influence to secure you^' 
from all those ckngers to which you ate eitposed in X' 
season of life the moft perilous. Conceive ol a youtk 
entering a world like this^- destitute of the presiding^: 
governing care of religion ; his passioi^ high, his pru** 
dence weak ; impatient, rash, confident ; without ex* 
perience ; a thousand avenues of sedudion opening: 
around him, and a syren voice sin^g at the entrance' 
of eachf pleased with appearances, and embracing' 
tbem for realities } joined by evil company ; ensnared 
by erroneous publications: — the hazards, my young, 
^ends, exceed^all the alarm I can give ; and you may 
flatter yourselves, that your own good sense and moral 
feelings will secure you ; but " he that trusteth in hii 
" own heart i* a fool.** The power of temptation, the* 
force: of example, the influence of circumstances in 
new and untried situations, are inconceivable ; they 
baffle the cleareft convidion, and the firmest resolu** 
tioQ ;. and; often render ua an astonishment to our- 
9dves« ^' Trust m the Lord with all thine heart, and 
^^ lean not to thine own understanding ) in all thy ways^ 
•* acknowledge Him, and He shall dired thy paths/* 
FbUow Him, and ^^ thou shak walk in thy way safely, 
^* and' thy foot sIkQI not stumble/' His grace and 
Ms providence will be thy guard and thy condudior* 
And ^ wilt thou not froni this time cry unto** Him> 
** My Father, thou art the Guide of my youth ?** 

Early piety will have a beneficial influence in forming 
your conhe^onSy and establishing your phas for life 2^ 

$Kiu V.3 

The Toung Admonished. 


for yon will aik counsel of the Lord, and arrange 2& 
your schemes under the superintendency of Scripture, 
which contains his unerring views of things. Those 
changes which a person who becomes religious in 
manhood is obliged to make^ are always very embar-* 
nssing* With what diificulty do some good men es- 
tablish family worship, after Kving, in the view of chil« 
dren and serva&ts, so lopg in the negled of it ; but 
this would have been avc^ded, had tkey early follow* 
ed the example of Joshua, <* as for me and my house, 
*^ we will serve the Lord'* How hard is it to disen- 
4;fHigle ourselves from associates, with whom we have 
been long familiar, amd who have prov^ed a snare to our 
scrub ! but we should never have linked ourselves with 
them, had we early Ustened to the voice of truth; 
*• my son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not :** 
** he that walketib with wise men shall be wise, and a 
^ companion of fools shall be destroyed.^ Some evils 
are remediless ; persons have formed alliances which 
they cannot dissdlve ; but they did not walk by the 
rule, " be ye not unequally yoked together with unbe- 
^ lievers.** They are now wedded to misery all their 
days ; and repentance, instead of visiting them like a 
iidthfui friend, to chide them when they do wrongs 
and withdraw, is quartered upon them for life. 

We may view the influence of youthftil piety, as 
connected with your spiritual progress and pleasure. 
In every science, profession and business, early appltca* 
tion is deemed iiecessary to future excellency j H& is 
not likely to surpass others, who began long after them. 
As soon as the, grind purpose of a man is fixed, he has 
MmetUng always to regulate him, always to engage 

• .' w 


100 The Toung Admonished* ^tt.. vt* 

him ; he secures much aftion, which would otherwise 
be dispersed and useless ; he avails himself of all acci- 
dental assistance, and turns e^ery stream into this 
swelling channel. Ah early dedication also renders a 
religious life more easy and pleasant. Use facilitates ; 
a repetition of adion produces habits, and habits form-^ 
ed, yield delight in those exerdses which formed them. 
What was irksome at first, becomes by custom agreea- 
ble, and Ve even refuse a change. 'And this is pe- 
culiarly the case here; for religion will* bear examina- 
tion ; it iniproves on intimacy ; fresh exc^endes are 
perpetually discovered ; fresh succours are (kily afiord- 
ed ; and every new vidoiy inspires new hope, and pro- 
duces new energy. ^ 

Your piety, my youthful friends, will be of unspeaka- 
ble advantage in the calamities of life. These you 
cannot reasonably expeft to escape. "Man is borii 
" to trouble." Whatever affords us pleasure, has pow- 
er to give us pain. Possessions are precsirious. Friends 
die. When his gourds wither, what becomes of the 
wretch who has no other shade ? But ** to the upright 
"there ariseth light in the darkness." Though di- 
vine grace does not ensure them exemption from ca- 
lamity, it turns the curse into a bleflSng ; it enters the 
house of mourning, and soothes the troubled mind \, it 
prepares us for aU> sustsdi^s in all^ Minifies by aljl, and 
delivers us from all* 

Early piety will bless old age. When the «evU 
«< days come, and the years draw near, in which you 
*• will say we have no pleasure j" when ** the clouds 
" Beturn after the rain ;" when " those that look out 
"at the windows are darkened;" ^en ".the grass- 


gBit. v.} 7%^ Tifung Admrnkhed^ 10) 

^^ hopper is a burden, and desire fiails,^ and you arc^ 
af^oadung your ^' long home," you will not be des- 
titute of consolation. Your ** hoary hairs ate a crown 
** of glory ,*• for *' they arc found in the way of 
^ righteousness/* Yqu enjoy the esteem and assistance, 
of those who have witnes^ your worth, and been 
blessed by your example. God views you as an ^* old 
disciple," and '^ remembers the kindness of your 
youth/' With humble confidence you address 
Hiin ; ^^ O Ckxl ! thou hast taught me from my youth ; 
<« and hitherto have I dedared thy wondrous works : 
^^now also when I am did aod grey headed, O God, 
^^ forsake me net/' And what saith the answer of 


God t ^' Even to your old age I am he, and even to 
hoary hairs willlcarry you : I have made, and I will 
? bear,' even I will carry and will deliver you/' You 
can look back with pleasure on some instances of use- 
fulness i to some poor traveller you have been ^re- 
freshing stream i some deluded wanderer you guided 
jfklQ ^^ the p^th of peace." You review with satisfac- 
tipn some peculiar places of d^yotioQ, some ^^ ^imes of 

V refreshing from the presence of the Lord,'' some 
**hc4ydays" in which, ** with' the yoice of joy iam^ 
^^ gladness,*' you accompanied ^^ the multitude to his 
"house." You look forward, and see the God whQ 
])^as glided you " with his coyinsel," r?ady to " re- 
** cdv^e you to glory." " My salvation is nearer thagi 
^' whe:n FbeUeved ; the night is hi spent, the day is at 

V hand, : \ know that my Redeemer liveth. I am now 
" ready to be offered, and the time of my departure 
\' is at hand : I have fought a gobdjfight, 1 have fin- 
\^ ished my course, I have kept the fiuth. ' Henceforth 

mm Tim nm^ Jdmmihid. £Sir. n 

^< there b laid up ior Me a crown of righteou^iesiy 
^' wlucli ttke Lord tlie rigfafteous Judge fludl give me at 
^ jthat day^ and not to me only^ but unto all .them Am 
« love hia af^pearing.*' Such is the beneficial infliienor 
of eardy piety. JLt affects our hpdies^ our circumstauA 
cesy our presemmticm, our connectioifi, our progress 
«and pleasure in Che ways of godliness^ the troubles of 
life, and the burdens of ^- Bii4: if ?11 these advantar 
ges do not allure you to an immediite attention to ce^^ 
iigion, and iyou iKtsxAve to suspend your concern tflla 
future period, it will be necessary^ 

Part HI* To take ^ more ^iwfial view of the sub* 
Ject» and to rsamine die consefu^ices of protirastinai- 
tion. We can only make two mppoations ; the one 
js, that after att your deii^, you win obtain repentance ; 
the other, and this is m»ch more jHx>bab)e9 Is that yo^ 
will not. 

Arst, We shall conclude that you will obtain re* 
pentance. This is what you hope for ; but allowing 
your hope to be well founded, nothing can be more 
unreasonable than your delay. For would you in- 
^ulge yourselves in ^ course of an, because you hope 
toT^Se able hereafter to repent of it ! Can any thing 
exceed this extravagance of folly ? Would any mail 
Sn his senses continue in a business, because lie hoped 
that at last it would fill him with painful regret and 
self abhorrence ; because he hoped before his death, to 
condemn himself for engaging in it, as having acted a 
part the most^ foolish, jb^e, and injurious f R^ re-. ^ 
pentance is always ^an awfiil thing ; it leads the sub- 
ject of it to feel||{iat his ^ iniquities are a burden too 
^ heavy for him to bear j* it caus^him to ^ lo^th^ 


^luBidetf for aBf^ his ^ abominaCioiis f k SBb hiitv 
with' ^ shame and amfiMoAof face f k render him 
<< speechless*" Hiis it does at aH tfanes ; but ii^ a late 
vepentanee, in arepeiftance after so many drimihal de-' 
bys, there are Mfour peculiar drcaikistances of aggrava*' 
lion. The first is drawn from year skiguhr abase of* 
the divine' goodness* Vor what encourages y<m to re- ' 
fase so long theobediente winch' God ^mands ? Yoti 
hope He will at last sheW mercy : were it not for this 
confidbiKe, you eould not venture to delay. VfhUt 
then, when you go to God^ wUibe the'language of your 
nfegligenee ¥ ^ Lord^ I have betfi evil, because thou* 
^ wast good was not because I conudered thee aft 
^ hardmaster, that I did not serve thee, but because I 
^.believ^ thee to be a kind OM. Persuaded of thy 
^compabaion, andrr^kdineas ta pardon, I Have peaceably' 
^ sinned aj^inst thee for sixty years. If thou hadst 
** not been so infinitdy worthy of my affection aaii 
** devotion, I had long, ago loved and obeyed thee."—' 
A second arises from the multitude of evil to be re« 
viewed. It is distressing enough to examine a week, or 
a month, stained with the vileness of sin. But, Oh !• 
to look back uppp years ! multiplied years ! to see sina 
rushing out of exisry relation, every condition in which 
we have been found ! . So many opportunities lost ! so 
many talents misemployed ! so many privileges abu- 
sed I a life barren of goodness ! a whole life oi guilt I 
—A third is taken from injury done to others. If 
God has forgiven him, how can he forgive himself ! 
By his errors, his vices, his example, and his influence^ 
he has led other; into sins, from which he cannot re* 
claim them j he sees them advandng in the way to 


Bestfu^dn; sttd kdowis that he inetruded tlridenppii. 
raged them to enter it. Hsi|q>y is the youth, who, by 
im early coiiv^rsioif, id {tfes^ved. from being a ^'cor^ 
^ nipter," and who is harmless, if not . ^< useful in his 
^ passage throu^ fife/' . Tb charge ourselves with 
the loss of dne st^ui, is sufficient, not only to eaibitter 
repentance, but if it were possible, to province even an- 
guifli in heavmi»--^The fourth is to be found in. the un- 
certainty which necessarily attends such deferred re- 
pentance* For how can he be assured of thetruth of 
k? Hoiiir can he know- that he has not only abandon- 
ed sin, but is mortified to it ? How can he kqow that 
he is not only reformed, but reQewed? Prinqi^es are 
to be asccprtaiped by th^ir operations and efiedb j what 
0!pfK>rtunity has he to exemplify them f How can he 
hiiow that his concern is any thing more than fear 
awakened, or tears extorted by the approach of death 
. ?;Dd judgment ? Men may change their work, and not 
their master. ' We have seen men in circumstances of 
sickness, giving all tlie evidence we could desire of a 
genuine repentance, whose health, and whose wicked- 
ness returned together. How will you decide whether 
your fepentince be superior to this ? What reason 
will you have for cruel suspicion ! How dreadful to be 
in a state of perplexity, when, above all things you 
need a good hope through grace ! To suspend salvation 
on a venture ! Perhaps, I am on the confines of hea^ 
yen ; perhaps, I am on the verge of hell ! 

Our reasoning has thus far proceeded on a sup|>o- 
sition that you will obtain repentance hereafter, though 
you are resolved to live neglectful of God now. But * 
there is another supposition, you may not obtain 

k } flnd tJrfs wc! contend i$ much mon piohifale tfaail 
tiie odter. F6r who h» tdd yeu that yon sha)! livtf 
lo repent f ltai;« ymi made' d coimiaiit «^kh deatli } 
Am 7011 €Peciure from tfat jttpardy of cfisesstt and ac« 
tidefliuf Tou €Xpeft tii# MsMer in the evening, who 
iUraTCS you that he m9Si not comf in ^ flaotning? 
ftMnd Ibrtfa, )^ yotiog and ye heahiiyi did yon never 
beai^ of one dying at yoar ^agt^ and in yeur dbtwm* 
fiances ? A wise ^ter haa told you tkit Hditeen k ^ 
^ mortal as fourscore ;'^ lAd an impirad one^ ^ nHttt 
^alfto Imoiweth not his time; as die fi^es that iktt 
^ taken in an eVi! net, and as the hasds that are oaughc 
** in the snare, so »re the sons of men snared in att 
-^ cfvil time, M^henlt faBeth suddenly upon them/' 

Or who has asstired you that you shaH hav^ grace 
to repent? For to grace only now qan you look fojr 
the effe£k ; and this grace must bf little les$ than noif 
raculous. For view a man who has jreached the peri- 
od of your procrastination ; his strength is labour ?nd 
sorrow ; the infirmHies of the body weigh down the 
soul i the senses are impaired ; the faculties are be- 
numbed ; he is incapably of attention ; every trifle 
disconcerts him ; he is more than half dead before he 
begins to think of living ; unable any longer to breathe, 
he b preparing tp ** rijn the race set before him ;** 
' con^depce cabling so long in vain, is now silent ; ob- 
jeds so long familiar to die mind, are become unim- 
pressive. He has walked by threatenings so often^ 
that they cease to terrify him. The present bible has 
4one nothing, and no new one is to be ezpeded ; he 
lias not been led to repentance by ^' Moses and the 
^« prophets, melther would he be persyaded though 

iOt The Toung Admonished. [Ssr/ ^. 

^ one rose from the dead." ''It is easier fer a oimel 
^'to go through the eye of a needle, than for" and; old 
sinner '' to «iUer into the kingdom of heaven :" '' with 
^^ men it is impossible ; but with God all things -are 
*' possible!." On this hinge tairns~^ his hope, all is re>^ 
doced. to. this, . the repentance of such a man' mosv 
depend upon grace. Let us see then what reason yoa 
. ]»ive to conclude that God will grant you this repenv 
tance. G^ \^t& to be gracious ; and of this grace 
we cannot, speak toQ highly ; but such views of it as 
encourage priesumption, and countenance sin, are um 
questionably errovBeous ones& He is gracious \ ' but 
Us grace lives in cOimmunion with his holiness and his 
wisdom. He is gracious ; but the Very notion suj^po- 
ses the exercise of it to be free, and that he may dis- 
pense it as he pleases. . Though nothing, can deserve 
his grace, m^y things may provoke it; and w;hat 
reason have you to expeA, that after you can sin no 
longer, He will in an extraordinary way extend the 
grace you have so long despised,, and save you from a 
ruin the consequence of your own choice? And what 
view have you of God, if you suppose that he cannot 
righteously deny it ? When you have rendered your- 
selves most unworthy of it as a gift, do you exa<St it as 
a riglu ? Has he not toFd you that his " Spirit shall 
**not always strive with men?" Is his' mercy to have 
no limits, or his patience no end ? If " sentence against 
^ an evil work be not executed speedily," is it never 
to be executed? Were it common for God to call 
sinners by his grace at such a period, would it not 
have the most unfavourable effed, and encourage a 
hope which all the biUe \» levelled to destroy ? God 

Sir. V.3 The Young Admonished. 107 

designs to be honoured by his people in this world $ 

he saves them, that they may serve him ; he converts 

them, not to die, but to live. And therefore we find 

fiew, very few, becoming religious in advanced year^ ; 

%n<i observation abundantly proves that irreligkmr 

youth is ' followed, with wickedness in manhood, ^ancl 

ifutifier^noe in old ^ge ; a^id that as men live, so they 

^ Ah i how often do I think, as I ascend these stairs- 
and look round on this assembly, how easy would* it- 
be to determine my hearers to a religious c(»irse^ if ^ho 
^d did not fatally proniise themselves weeks, the mid« 
(^eraged months, the young, years to come ! It is not 
absolute deoial that destroys so many souls, but tam- 
pering dehy. Of all. the numbers who continuailly- 
drop into perdition, is there one, who did not intend' 
i^ at some future period to " work out his salvation ?" - 
But before this other passion was fuUy indulged, and* 
this other scheme was accomplished, while he 'wa^ 
slumbering in negligence, or awaked by a midnight 
cry, he sprang up to find his lamp ; the M Qrid^room 
" came, ,and they that were ready went in with him 
^^ to the marriage, and the door was shut." Eternal 
Qod ! ^' SQ teach us to number our days, that we i^ay 
<( apply oui^ hearts unto wisdcnn." Interpose in favour 
of the youth who are before thee ^ and suffer not pro-^* 
crastination, that " thief of time," that " child of the 
^* devil," that " eneniy of all righteousness," to deceive, 
2)nd to destroy the rising hopes of our families, our j| 
churches, and our country. " Pour down'thy Spirit upon. 
'S our seed^ and tliy blessing upon our offspring ;" "may. 
one say, I am the Lord's, and another ci^U himself 

idft tin Tmmg Admnitktd, [Sar, v^ ■ 

'^ \pf the name of Jacob \ ftnd iiiotheff aiiWcrilM witl) 
^ liis own hand^ afid rarfiaBie hiiqfielf Xxj the name of 
••liraeL" • 

To reaHse tlu$ pleasing prospeft, let miniBters, let 
tators^ let aH unite their eodeavours ; but, O ye pARt 
BHTs, a pecttHar dbligation devolves jipon you. Awarr 
ken all your tenderness and anxiety, and give tlietn i- 
spiritual diredion. You ^sh yoi|r children to be so^ 
ber, submissive, dutii^l f but piety is the only sure 
foundation of ttfOvaHf y; Joi^ would not have youi^ 
k>ve for your children to be suspe^^d \ but wretdied- 
are th<ist children who sl^re only ii^ li scdidtude, which 
^fifas ^ what shall they eat, or what sfaaU they drinkj^ 
^^ or wherewithal shal^ they be dolhed ?'* What is the 
body to the soul I What is time to eternity ? What is ■ 
it to dispose of them advantageously in life, and leave 
then) unprepared for death, unprovided for a new, a ^ 
neveivendii^, a changeless period of existence T An 
you the barbarous instruments of bringing these haptf 
lesd beings into life, only to sacrifice them } Such par* 
entd dXfe mqr6 cruel than Herod. He slew th^ chU^ 
(hren* cf others ; these day their own. He only de- 
stroyed the body ; these destroy the SQpl. I&b vio 
tims died innocent, s^Ad Wfre doubtless sav^d ; these 
psirents Vfill not suffer their o&pring to die innocent ; 
by theit unkind care, they guard them till the seasoQ 
of safety is elapsed ; till they are become accountable 
find criminal ; and expose them when they know their 
#death will be attended with their damnation. Men 
\aA brethren, escape this dreacttul censure } distinguisli 
yours not only from an openly wicked world, but 
frptfi those 9)Qdem pTofessfm <tf religion, who are 

|bk. v.y The Totmf Mnmubed 10(^ 

ways £onBd ia public iManng Mrmon*, but cttvlfaint 
their ^amUeB.iii disotdw^ md tf^ QO pilm in the. pif ' 
ous education of tfieir children. Fear Ood younelwSf' 
and teach yoi^r qfipiing ta £ear him. Recowmend 
instructiqn by example^ ^nd crqwn 4U wit|i prayer^ 
prayer for thea^„ and with thenu Thu9 you will 
^* train them up in the niMrture and ad^nonition of ^ 
^^ Lord ;" thus yqu will rejoice here ^^ to ^e ihfivgk 
^ waUdi^ ix| the (ruth," and hereafter* w^ 1^ theoi 
to the throne of glory-^^^ Beihold, here am I, mi4 ^ 
^ qhild thqu hast given jafie/' 

But it i$ with yiiu^ my hearect, in early Ufi^ Lwiali 
fo dofte fchi^ tdc^reffi. i stefome in this ^embly^ who 
^e.4istingiiidied by tsbe fnir of God in their youth % 
iome Isaacs who pibtfer an erening-walk in die id4 
to tnc^fibae, to the crflfwded aMnues of disaipet»»i 1 
SQone JoatphSj^ whoBeHmage b ^ a fruitful bou^ by % 
^ wiH )" wme Oavids, who love the harps of Zioii^ 
Und'faave no ear for the !^ song of the drunkard)** off. 
^. the mirth of fools ;" son^e Timothys, whot V' from a 
^ child have k^own the Scripture, which is able to 
^ make tbem wise uatosaliT^tion *,•' and I hail you oq 
your easly escape from *^ the paths of the destroyer ;V 
on your early sep^ratioi^ fvpm a world, which attracts 
oidy to shew its emptiness, and debates only to de*^ 
press; on your early unioni with die wise and ^txsd* 
Go fbcih) attd in sdl ^^ the beauties, of holiness'' hon- 
our Grod, and serve your generation sw^cording; to his 
will* ReSgiOttsly Occupy, the statk»o$ which you are 
toennobl«9 and iEHrm the connf^ctiom which you are 
to bless. << Ado^ ihe doptrineof (2od your S^nwMT 
f' iar ^ things/' ^amastly^ p«»ne tl^ glorious pouriy^ 

1 10 The Tvung Admonished. f Sb r;^ v. 

.which you have begun ; be not weary in welldoing ; 

grow in grace, as you advance in years ; ** abound' 
more and more in knowledge, and in all judgment ;*'' 
approve things that are excellent ;'* and ^' be sia- 

^* cere and without offence till the. day of Christ,''- 

' And what hinders any of you, my young friends, 
from joining yourselves to the Lord ? Weigh the rea- 
sonings which you have heard. Suspend for a while 
the influence of .your passions, and endeavour to feel 
the force of the motives which have been adduced. 
Deliberate or rather decide ; for there is no time for 
hesitationr-^*^ now is the accepted time, now is theday 
^i of salvation.'' The language of the Redeemer i&: 
** today ;*' and will you say with Pharaoh, ^^ to-mor* 
f^ row ?" Every delay will leave you more remote 
itovck the God you have to seek; every delay. willt 
place more barriers between you and heaven ;. evexy 
delay will increase your crimes, your passions^, your' 
aversions ; every delay will dimifiish the efficacy of 
means, the period of divine patience^ the time of yoxur 
probation ; while you hesitate, you die ; while you 
promise yourselves years, perhaps you have not days ; 
perhaps the shuttle has passed the loom that wove* thy 
winding-sheet ; perhaps in yonder shop lies rolled up, 
and .ready to be severed qff, the pi^ce of cloth destin- 
ed to be thy fhroud ; perhaps " the feet of them that 
" have buried thy*' neighbour, are at the door " to 
*' carry thee out !" » 

When Felix trembled, instead of cherishing his 
concern, he proposed a '^ more convenient season,'^ 
which never came. It was tha unhappy state of Agrip-^ 
f^ to " be almost'- but not . altogether persuaded *^ to 

SsE V.^ The Tmi^Jldmomsbei:. fit 


^^ be ajdirisdah/f itod there are ycmng peopk^ hbw 
shall I describe them ? they had betimes convictions 
and impressions ; tHeir early days were the time of 
their vintation ;'they asked for God their Maker ;* they 
often retired to pray ; they loved the sabbath ;' they 
^e;ard the gospel with sensibility; but alas ^ ^^ their^ 
f^ goodness was as a morning cloud and early dew, 
** which passeth away/' . But "was it Aot better with 
*< you than now ?" Ah I had you still " hearkeiied to 
^ hi^ commandments, tldeii had your peace been as a 
'* river, and your righttousness like thfe waves of the 
^ sea.'* wm this discourse revive your former feel- 
Higs, and cause you to return ? or will it only hold 
you up as a warhing, to guard others against trijBing 
with consdence,' and falling away after the same ex- 
ample ? 

On some' of you, I f^ar, the address has been more' 
than useless. I could wish you had saved yourselves- 
the mortificatibn of hearing a discourse, in which there' 
was nothing agreeable to your taste, smd which you 
determined from the beginning to disregard \ I could 
wish you had withdrawn yourselves from an assembly, 
which will one day furnish, only witnesses against you. 
By an unsanAified use of the means of grace,' you ag- 
gravate your sin, increase your misery, and rendet 
your conversion more difficult. In endeavouring to 
be your friends, your ministers become your enemies ; 
in trying to save, they condemn ; though ordained to 
be "the savour of hfe unto life," your corruption 
renders them ** the savour of death unto death ;** and 
those aflfedionate importunities and faithful warnings, 
which if they had been followed would have secured 


fktmaig JidmUsiiit 

t^lu ¥, 

your bippinesS) vHl jormnid fofor mfiidit i^hdot joH 
come to die, and render your recoBfeffion painfiil, jakl 
your prosped intolerable j for ydii yrilk ^iBoom at 
^ the last, when tbf ieah afad thy hody are cooBtdnd^ 
*^aod fay. How hatre I hated wtira&otL^ and my 
^^^ heart deqpiaed reproof; and have tot. okayed the 
^ Toice of my teaohtta, nor indiiied tnine ear to thani 
^ that inatru Aed me ! I was 'almost in all evi ta the 
^ ItMdit of the congregation and assembly/^ 

• I 




MAiik. iv. 23. 


Jf ant M4^ have EASS 9*0 HSARy 1ST BZM WAB. 

THE s^^ ^f atitiquity delivered much 
6i their knowledge iti cbmpr^ensive sentences. Each 
of the wise men of Greece was distinguished by some 
aphorism. All natioi^s have had their peculiar prov- 
erbs. The generality of mankind are much more m- 
fliienced by detached and striking phrases, thatir by 
long addre^es, or laboured reasonings, which rel^uire 
lilore time and application than they are either willing 
or able to afford. ** The words of the wise are' as goads, 
^ and as nails fastened by the master of assemblies.'* 
The good effefts of preaching are commonly produ- 
ced by particular expressions, which leave something; 
for our own minds to develope or enlarge, which please 
the ims^nation, which are easily remembered, and 
which frequently recur. This method of instruftion 
our Lord and Saviour adopted. We often read of 
** his sayings ;*' and there is no sentence, which He $o 
frequently repeated, as the words which I have read. 
This alone should powerfully recommend them to 


Il^ The Gospel (kMtmb (S^^vp 

our regard; but they have higher daiins^ and w^' 
{tall view them, L As iinplyhig the authority q> 
THE Speaker.' IL As si;^;gestiiig the importavcr 
OF TH^ SUBJECT. JSL As appealh^g to impartiai^ 
CONSIDERATION* IV. As dexDanding practical im- 
provement. ** He that hath bars to i^ar, let 

^ HIM HEAR."* 

t Here b implied the authority of tHE Speaker. 
And who can advance claims on our attention equal- 
ly numerous and powerful with His ? '* He entered 
^into the synagogue, and taught. And thsj were 
^ astonished at his dodrine ; for he taught them as"^ 
^ one that had authority, and not as the scribes.'* 
He possessed every thing froth which a teacher could 
derive influence. 

He had au the authority which is derived from 
knowledge. Religion was the subjed he came to 
teack ; he knew the whole, and the whole perfe£Uy» 
With all the case of intelligence, he speaks of things 
which would swallow us up; they were familiar to 
llim. He speaks of God without any embarrassment ;; 
^< He was m the bosom of the Father." He speaks 
ei' heaven without any emotions of wonder ; it ww 
his Father's house. He mentions the treachery o£ 
Xudas without any surprise \ ** he knew from the be«« 
^' ginning who would betray him.'' Nothing in the 
behaviour of. his enenues^ or of his friends ; nothmg 
in the' denial of Rster, or'diiperwon.of.hisdisatples, as* 
tpnished lum; ^*he knew what, was in man." Ife. 
was iiiUy acquainted with the capacitie« and dispo^-*. 
iiqns of bis hearers. He knew how much they were* 

Si^. ^1*3 And d^erves Atlentm. US 

^Me to bear; when k was necessary to pj^oduce eirv 
dence, or to leave obscurity ; how to touch by suitable 
iXrotives, aB the hic^den spiings of adtioxi ; and by ap^ 
propriate iUustratbu, to remove prejudices, dissolve 
doubts, and satisfy desires jpoi:icealed in the minds of 
the Olivers, who *^ finding the secrets of the he^rt 
*'made manifest/' were filled with admiration, gnd 
' e^cl^dmed ^' <^exer man spaipe Uke this man/' Both 
h^s subge^^ ^Mid his auctience werie completely upder ^19 

^ He had all the authority which is derived ^rom un» 
i^^peachable reditude. This gives a speaker p^cuUas 
firmf^^ and force. A jconsciousnes^ of yice, or eve» 
of imper^^on, has a tendency to i]K»k;e him partial or 
timid* And where is the teacher, who is sensible of 
2^9^ faiyiings \ who exemplifies uni^rsally thqse high 
]^tru£dons he delivers :? *^ In maay things ^e ofiend: 
*'aU.'^ He alone could s^y, "which of you coiif^ 
yinceth me of sin V^ It debased none of his anions, Lt 
mixed wit|\ noqe o|f his mo^ive^ IQs tampers were 
2|]L heavenly; his example efpbodied and enlivened 
ev^ry dodrine he preachec}, ]^ him were none pf 
those omiflions which call for th^s proverb^ " phyfictan,- 
^i heal thys^/* He spake . fearless' oC the r^qa<^ of 
1m hearers, . and ancbeoicad by the refleifliojis iof his 

He had aA the authority Amring firom ^ miracles, 
<^ «nd wonders^ and signs;^ • Think of a speaker,' who 
cooki caH'^fMth* the powers of heaven and earth, and; 
eettUish his do^na by their testimony ; who gobUI 
tstA his discourse and say, all this is true ; witness, ye; 
winds and waves»-«and they ** c^a^ from theMr raging/' 


il6 Tie Gospet tkmandi fSfik. Vp 

Vntnesa, ye blindi^attd thiey** receive their sight/* 
Witness, ye dead— and ** Lazarus comes forth/'—' 
** Rabbi, we know that thou art a teadier sent from 
^ God : for no man can do these iniracles which thou' 
^ doest, except God bfe with him.*^ 

Consider his uncontroulable domitiion. There is' 
ho place where his voice does not reign. He causes 
the most insensible creatures to hear it* In the origi-' 
nal c];eation ^ he spalce, and it was done ; he com* 
manded, and it stood fast." ^^He appointeth the 
^ moon for seasons, and the' sun knowetfa hb going^ 
U down/' ** The day is his, the night *also is hb f^ 
^he has made summer and winter:'^ and when hef 
caUs for them, they never refuse to come. Even the 
unruly sea acquiesces in his mandate ; ^^ hitherto shall; 
**thou come, and no further; and hctre shall thy 
^ proud waves be $tayed." The earth obeys the lawi 
which he impressed upon it. ^'The voice pf the 
^ Lord is powerful ; the voice of the Lord b fuH of 
f ' majesty ; the voice of the Lord breaketh the cedars f 
<^ the voice of the Lord divideth the flames of fire ; 
^^the voice of the Lord shaketh the wilderness*'* 
'^Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, m< 
<* the which all that are in th£Ir. graves shdl hea^ 
^* hb vc^ce and shaH come forth." Obeyed by aU- 
creatures, he approaches you, and expf^ submission. 
Would you be the ottly rebel' in the universe ! Unfikft 
all other beings, would yq[ swerve iram your statioBsr 
and renounce your allegiance i Harder than the rock^^ 
ftid more sensefess than the dead, would you refute 
to hear fab voice ? 
Consider the dignfty of hb charafter. ^"Where the' 


j9lBft. vt^3 And Afiupvet Aumnkn. iif 

^« ^ofd dt ft Idng'ii tWe \a poww, and- ^Iio may Wf 
*^ Ulito hkb, wkat doest thoii'?" ; I'he most magnificent 
tides ^ are not too g^ious to didcariminate^ due 9o&c<di 
God. *' He ha4 on his Testiure) and on hid 'thi^, 4 
" name written, King of Idngs^ and Lord of lortis.'' 
Was Isaiah mistaken, when he said of the ^' Child bom, 
^ and the Son given,'* " the government shall be upon 
^^ his shoulder, and his name shall be c?tlled Wonder*^ 
" fill, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting 
Father, the Prince of Peace ?' Did He himself ex- 
ceed his personal dadms when he said, *^ I am Alpha 
^ and Omega, the Beginning and the Ending, ssdth 
H the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to 
^ come, the Almighty ?" 

And does He not stand m relations, the most intimate 
and affecting ? He made us ; placed us so high in the 
scale of being ; endued our nature with reason an<J 
immortality. He sustains us ; ^ in Him we live, arid 
^^ move, and have our being.** His are 2^1 our posses^ 
sions ; and if there be a day, ot^n hour, in which he 
is regardless of you, you shall be allowed to be inat- 
tentive to hini. His demands are founded in the sun 
whijch l»faines upon you ; in the friends you enjoy ; in 
the bread which nourishes you ; and above all, in the 
salvation yoij need. He addresses you from the gari^ 
den and the cross, and shall his voice be unheard? 
ShaB itch an authority be despised ? Wfll you stand 
with Bharaoh, and impiously ask, ^^ who is the Lord» 
*f that I should obey his voice ?'* Why, «* He, in whose 
^^ hands thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways -^l 
He " who remembered** thee in thy •' low estate ;'* 
]E|6 '^ who gave i)is life ti, ransom^ for thee } He. is 


119. TbeG^ipa demmds (tSjoi. irc 

4lf ifastef $ and shatt der^nts «&ob<^ the orders dF « 
mtter ? Thy Taadier ; and afadl disciples reAise the 
teiractioos of their Uacher ? Thjr Benefactor ; ztsd 
]utve loprii^ Uadaess afid tender menies no clttms i 
O.woederfU beyoiid degree ! ^' TKvs saith tjie Xxxd 
i^xSA hm% forth a listeiuAg world 4 faithers and cM«r 
di!m» priposs 9ad people, the wise and the unlearnedv^ 
«|te rid^^aad the poor, aUd-rHnone app^rs. He speaks, 
and we 9f% regari^Hess, nag^mllcss of a Speaker dothed' 
Tvkh e?i?erf kitid of axithority } who also speaks on our 
^half, fbr our welfiire, and whose language is, ^heaur, 
^ and yonr souk shaH live." This brings us from the 
^thority pf the Speaker, to oonsid^r wl|^t 1$ eqxtally 
induded in the address, 

n. The IMPORTANCE ojr the subject— >• He 
^ that hath ears to hear, let him hear/' Sometimes 
speakers prpmise their hearers more than they can per- 
forpi, and e:&ite expectations which they are unable to 
Idealize. Jesus Christ- is not ^^d to awaken atten^- 
tJM>n ; he knows he can more than ri^ay it ; he knows 
we can never rai^ o^r minds tp the grandeur of th^ 
subject. He does not trifle ; his instructions are un^. 
speakably interefting and important. In order to this^ 
they must be tmje. And, my brethren, you cannot 
but acknowledge that the reality ci these things is 
MisaiBuc ; sometimes ft strikes you as provable, and 
piuch more frequently tljtan you are witling to allow \ 
hence your uneasiness } hence your eagerness to bring 
forward your ojnnicHis to make proselytes,, and to em- 
bolden, your treojibUng faith by pladng numbers a- 
round it. We affirm that these thines are true ; 

ap4t.olap0rTO uriiere we staiu^ when vtf affrmie \ trMi^ 
in view of evidenon, siuii^Kfleis -and convmcteg^ 
Tbere we appeal to 9 series of i9rof|i«d^} tadhtw^ 
a t]«n of mirades.^ ']Riwe to die stUfaokf and iM^ 
mss qf die doctrine ;* liete to the 0Qln|ieteiiG^ aniil' 
goodness di die writers. TlMre to the successof thft 
go^xd, destitute of every warhfl^ MeoaoMidalioa^ 
and in the faoe of the i»oet.pOwerjiyd opfOSkiQa ;* here 
to the blood of the best of men, and the content of the 
wisest men \ |qp we stand not^onlf near the fisfaerinail 
of GaUile^ but a multitiide of pn<<mfaieni: gcilius and 
kvning5 when ^ere say, ^' we hame not ftiUoWed cm- 
'' n^ngly devised fables.'' With aU dib endende; 
Would you cfispute the tnith of theie tlaags ? wooklyoa 
assure usy as some in our .day have d<Kie, thtt there ii 
not the shadow of trutkin them ? What should "^t thidk 
of the understandingaof sucb'peDmxis ?^did we'notknpw 
that they must pretend att this to justify their iadiffer'< . 
ence ; that when a man hab fallen out with his con* 
science^ he must separate from it for the sake of hi^ 
own peace ; and that ^< this is the cohdemnadon, that 
^ light IS come into the world, smd men love darkness 
^ rather than light, because' their deeds are eviL'* 

How pleasing is truth ! How satisfactory is it to find 
something to whicrt the mind may adhere with please 
ure, after being the dupe of ignorance and error, and 
^ like a wave of the sea, driven with the wind and tostf* 
^ ed/^ But though that which is important must al- 
ways be true, that which is true is not always impor- 
tant. It is otherwise here \ as the gospel ^ is a fidthful 
^ saying,*' it is « vrorthy of all acceptation/^ Evert 
^ the angels desire to locdc into these tUngs ^^ we na 

i0 !Xbt GptiAdtdtkdi ISnu iu 


rtl w M f C ;g<ait c^ tlMiir bmag iMtfamfatft or AatroaomtM ; 
iSmy pats by ibpon aod aurs, aod {htass around tlie 
aoti^ Ask^yw^i nay brethren, are much bore con- 
tttfiefl than aiigels. I. niay.tak^ up the language of 
lif^BM 10 the Israelites-r->' Set yolir h«trts unto all thu 
^ .vords wjhich I testify among you this day ; for it b 
^^.not a vata thjing, because it is vouk i^ife." To you 
ihe.gQspel is not a history of wonders only ; the jouti^ 
IQ«y <)t a Go4 from, a throne down to a cross, and froooi 
a cross bacl^: to a throne^:; it i^ the inter esiting narrative 
t)f ypur salvation* Take every other land of wis- 
dom ; how humi^ing its dain^ ! thf y are confined to 
this wprkj. ^^ Kaowledgey it shaU vanish away j" the 
|^€;ater part of it is valuable only for a few years \ the 
MnQwle^e of various l^inguages^ and a thousand other 
things wi|l be useless in a future economy* The in- 
5^ry is, who; has '^ the words of eternal life ?'' who 
can " lead us in the way £V£RLASTmo ?*' What is a 
message which conc^ms^ only your .property, and the 
health of y^our body ? The soul is the standard of the 
man ; his supreme happiness must relate principally to 
the chief part of his nature, and the chief period of 
his duration* Now the gospel fixes its residence in 
the soul > illuminates all, sanctifies all, harmonizes all, 
and strikes its blessed influences through eternal ages. 

Conten;iplate the gospel in connection with youth 
and with age } observe its efficacy in the various con«^ 
ditions of prosperity and adversity } view its agency, in 
the numerous relation^ of life, in rulers and in subjects, 
ia parents and in children, and so of the rest. Drop 
ichristianity in a family ; ^read it through a nation ; 
diffuse it over the w;orld ; let all be influenced by ita 


Sbii. vi*3 And deserim AtfepaiofL ISl 

spirit^ and governed by iu dilates ; and I ^^uld ask, 
appealing to infidels themselves, would not a scene bci 
produced, the most lovely, the most glcnriaas, themoRt 
beneficial? Would not the language of prophecy be 
immediately realized? ^* the wilderne^ and the fiC^ta* 
ry place shallbe made glad for them : and the des- 
ert shall rejoice and blo^om as the rose. It shall 
'<' Uossom abundantly, and rejoice eVen with joy ated 
*^ singing ; the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto k, 
^ the excellency of Carmel and Sharon : they shsdA see 
" the GLORY of the Lord, and the excellency of 
^* our God." Thus, whether we consider the gosjpe! 
with regard to man in his individual, or social e^- 
tence ; as an inhabitant of time, or an heir of eternity ; 
It is a universal benefador ; it is of the highest impor- 
tance J and as it demands, so it deserves all his atten- 
tion — ^^* If any man have ears to hear, let him hear/^ 

IIL It is an appeal to impartial consideration. 
And the demand supposes the subjeft to be accessible j 
that there Js no secrecy in the case ; nothing to be con- 
cealed. In heathenism there were many mysteries, 
from a knowledge of which, the common people, the 
mass of mankind, were alwrays excluded. We read of 
men who shall ^' privily bring in damnable hertoies." 
For error needs disguise. Truth ^ories in exposure. 
And the gospel has this character of truth. The 
Founder of our religion declared, " in secret have I 
« said nothing." The apostle of the Gentiles could 
affirm, " this thing was not done in a corner/' These 
everlasting record's lie open for inspedion j. they chal- 
lenge' exaihrnatton ; it is not necessary tp c^nc^al any 


tUtig; the ckuse Mnitt derive advantage firom publidy 
rjr ; it is a system q£ truth atid evidence ; imd ycm are 
«iot only allowed, but commanded to Consider its 
claims, and to examine its contents. 

'The duty our Saviour enjoins, escludeis force^ 
and supposes every thing to be free ; all dominion over 
conscience is forbidden by it^ Sbhbmetanism was 
enfofced by the sword ; soldiers were the apostles of 
; the Koran f Popery began and was maintained by 
- means of spiritual ufiin*pation. They knew the dan- 
ger of free inquiry, and shewed their wisdom in not 
*suffelring it ; they destroyed the right of private judg« 
meht, took away the Scriptures, and m^e ignorance 
the mother of their devo.tion. The blind must dc* 
pend upon a guide. And has not too nmch of this 
disposition been discovered in succeeding ages^ and by 
persons who have come much hearer the truth ? Have 
they not^refused to others a liberty which they had 
fiobly taken themselves ? After scorning to be slaves, 
have they never proposed to be tyncnts ? And though 
they would not call any man master, have they not 
desired to be called so by many ? But " one .is our 
•' Master, even Christ, and all we are brethren/' No 
one has dominion over the faith of another. No co^ 
ercive influence, however e;£ercised, has the feast 
countenance from the nature of the gospel, or manner 
in which it was established. The Bereans are com* 
mefnded for *^ searching the Scriptures daily;" and 
cS>mpariiig the preaching of Paul and Silas with the 
testimonies of the law and the prophets. Hear the 
language of. a man who well knew there was no vir- 
tue in the eifeds of com|>\ilsion : << Prov6 all things. 




$B&. "vf. J Aiul duerms Attrition. 1 2S 

^^ and liold fist diat wkich is good ;" ^ I speak as un* 
" to wise men, judge ye what I say/' The gospel per** 
wades by infonning ; even regeneraticMi does pdt de- 
stroy the natural order of operation in the faailtbs o£ 
the mincL God enlightens in order to govern ; we 
ibUow him from choice, this choice is founded in con- 
vidion, and this conviction is produced by evidence. 

If you would comply with our Lord's demand, re- 
member it is the gospel you have to consider, and 
nothing else. Separate from it whatever is adventi- 
tious and human ; and during this investigation keep 
jlhie. subjed before you pure and unmixed. Be iar^- 
ful that it is Christianity you are surveying ; not any 
corruptions and errors wjiich have blended with it-^ 
not any modifications and arrangements which fallible 
men have made of it. Ask for a bible, and s^e that 
no spiritual legerdemain slip on thie table in the room 
of it, popery or protestantism, Arminianisn) or Calvi- 
nism, or any human creed or system. These may be 
true, or they may be false ; they are not standards ; 
they are all to be tried themselves. Ask for the things 
of God, "not in the words which m^'s wisdom 
*'teacheth, but in the words the Holy Ghost testch- 
"eth." Distinguish between Scripture, and e^plana^ 
tions of Scripture ; see with your own eyes j explore 
the good land for yourselves, and before you enter, 
suflfer none to require from you a promise, that when 
you return, you shall think preciselv with them concern- 
ing every thing you may discover there. This preach- 
er calls you to come and hear him ; if another should 
step in to prepossess you as you are going ; if he should 
^ay, "remember this will be his meaning, thougT) 


m » 

IS^ , The Gospel dmamb -[[Sbr. ^. 

'^ mzny of his words wiH feem Co fasve another f^fe ; 
'< fome things will require ^eat qualifications ; fome- 
<* times there will be a difference between his secrfet and 
<« his revealed will/* and so on*— say, ** I wil hear him 
^^ for mysdf ; l^e speaks to be understood ; I ha^e under** 
^^ standing as well as you ; what I borrow is not mine 
^ own/' 

But nothing is more adverse tp our Saviour's de- 
mand than- dissipation. Attention is absolutely neces- 
-sary, and in order to this we must call in our thoughts, 
and fix them. The more finite and contraAed our 
powers are, the more loose and roving our minds, the 
more averse we feel to refteftion ; the more intelle6hiaf 
and spiritual the subjeA, and the less there is in it 
adapted to the senses, the more necessary, and the 
more difficult application becomes. But \abour an(| 
diligence will be amply rewarded in the pleasure of 
progress, and the glory of success ; '^ If thou incline 
*' thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to un«> 
** derstanding ; if thou criest after knowledge, and ■ 
** liftest up thy voice for understanding ; if thou seek- 
f* est her as silver, and sesirchest for her as for hid 
•* treasure ; then shalt thou understand the fear of the 
V Lord, and find the knowledge of God. For the 
f * Lord giveth wisdom j out of his mouth cornet!^ . 
?* knowledge and understanding/' • 

But it is of little use to apply a mind already biassed ; 
we are therefore to guard against prejudice. This will 
always make us partial ; it will keep us from doing jus- 
tice to any sentiment we dislike \ while it will lead us to • 
seize with greediness whatever is capable of g^^^i^g ^^' 
dence or importance to the opinioiis we have espoi^ed. 


Kopreju^Koesare inoce simple^ than thow which are 
deriTed ftoxxk-^^^ our fathers worshipped in this moun- 
^^mn*^ B«t none are so awf pi as those whkh spring 
from sinfii! lasts and passions. These will afiect prao 
ticad siitjectB 9 entangle the plainest duties, and per** 
plex every rule liy which we are unwilling to walk, 
in this case, a man, before he weighs evidences wiK 
examine -OMisequences^ ^' Why if I own this, I must 
<< renounce the world ; I must pluck out a right eye^^ 
^< and cut off a right hand \ I must take up the cross ; 
^ be serious and circumspect in my conv^ersation." 
I^ch infei^eoces are arguments ; and they easily pret 
vail with unholy Hunds, as we see in the case of fnnSiy: 
worship, and che reception of the Lord's Supper. 

Impatience disqualifies us for religious investigation. 
If we review life, we shall find that many of our mis- 
takes and errors have been occasioned by a hasty judg- 
me|it. How changed have things appeared when the 
mind has returned to them at another time, and froni 
a different quarter ! 

We shall only a^id that nothing is so unfavourable 
to fair and successful ipquiry, as pride. We should 
come to the gospel, not lull, but to be filled : not to. 
cavil, but to learn ; sensible of our ignorance, and 
praying for divine directio(i, and receiving " the king- 
" dom of God as a little child." " With the lowly is 
'^ wisdom." *• Th^ meek will he guide in judgment, 
** and the meek will he teach his way." Gather up 
all these ; here is the gospel unveiled and exposed } 
you need not be afraid to approach it, no authority 
Can restrain you -, be sure it is the gospel only you in-' 
vestigate ; banish dissipation^ prejudice, impatience, and 

^99 ..Tie Guptl dmonit lSui,yu 


pride; ud we are n^tl^ athauned .or afrakl to say, 
aearch^ exaaiioe the whole system* . . 

Ezamine the character the smxed writers have giv^- 
CO ua of God ; b fie not a Faduer, the flather of nrntf 
caegy the Ood of all graoe^ the God of Ivve i Exam- 
ine the represeatatkm.they have given of man ; does it 
not agree with actual life and drily obaervailion ? Ex- 
amine the thnatenings they have denounced, and. the 
framings they have given ; do they not accord ivith 
the judgments which God has frequently inflicted 
on individuals, £unilies, and coontrics, ancl which prove 
a moral government in jtbe world! Ea^amane the 
proi^ises ; are they npt such as the state, and the oonr 
science of taaai requure i Where dp they countenance 
sin ? Examine |the priefc^ts j t^l^e only the command 
thou shalt love the LoYd thy God with a&'tby heart, 
and thy neighbour as thyself ^'^ what think you of 
this command, or rather what thinli; you of those men, 
who ' wish to e^ixlude this principle, and to destroy a 
book, the grand rim of which is to produce it ? But, 
rias ! many condemn a work which they never read j dis- 
like precedes and influences investigation ; and nothing 
is more absurd than to suppose that infidels renounce 
the gospel by the force of conviction, after having fully 
and impartially examined its contents. Be affured they 
never we^hed the subjed, though they are always fcold 
enough to pronounce that it is *' found wanting/ 
Few ever give thefe things a due confideration* Here 
however another clais of charaders appears in view ; 
for while some refufe to hear, others give thefe things 
a hearing on^y. Now though our Lord and Saviour in- 
tends nothing left than this, he requires muph more.—* 

Sitiuvi.1 • AM Aturvis AttekHM, IS? 

IV, He demsmds a :»RittcTicAL iMntovBiiBNT of 
HIS woRP. '^ He thst hath ears to heiir, let him 
^'hear.*' ^ I have ddivered many things in your 
^ I^'efenoe, and yon faatre dckie wdl in I^sarmg tfaem» 
^ Bat my preaching is not to he viewed as an enter- 
^tainment, fify dodrine is not dsfigned to anmife the 
<^ minds to gratify coriofieyy to linmiflk a namber«o£ 
*f fifdeft specuhi^ils. And therdbre hearing b only 
^f ii^nimaatal to something els^ ; therp is a duty of 
^greater importance fiffl remainioig*^ 
• What is it, my brethren ? What would our ^^iour 
aay in'€x{ilanationof his command? What has herfaid 
in other parts. df his word ? '^ Mb: filith with it ; let 
^* not the fenfe leave the mind as fooA as the found 
*f l^ves the ear ; remember it ; enliven it by medita- 
^Vtion ; redace it into feelings .-and aAioos ; fear thefe 
*' dehuHfiiadons ; embrace these promises ; obey thefe 
«« tomniands j walk according to this rule/' 

It is a lamentable reflection, that all the concern 
mcrny of our hearers have with sermons, consifts in 
hearing them. They do not consider hearing as the 
xbeans of becoming religious : it is their religion. 
They conclude that their duty is over when the dis- 
course is ended j whereas it is then only begun. In- 
fiead of carrying off portions of divine wisdom to* illu- 
minate their lives, they leave •behind them adl the in- 
structions they have received. They do not take the 
word of God along with them, to guide them in their 
ordinary walk ; to arm them against temptation ; to 
furnish them with the cautions of prudence ; to ftim- 
uhte them to universal conscientiousness. Their tem- 
pens are unsubdued, uh softened, unsanctified } thett- 

tsti The Gospel demoMdi f Snu inL 

coitreiftlkiii frroduces none of <^ the iiniit of Ike S^Hty 
^ which & love, jojr, peace^ long su£^ng, gentlenras, 
^ goodnefsy faith; meeknels, temperance." Bui the 
Word of Crod is practical v every^ tmth ^ announced 
to accomplish s<HBe pbrpcfse. If it ireveals a refuge, it 
b that you may enter it and be safe \ if It prodaiias 
a remedy, it is that you may use it. ft is not your hear^ 
iiig of it^ but your 2^l>^ng it, that will save you from 
death.- - You say of a preacher, he ought to do, as well 
as to PREACH ; and we fay of ft hearer, he ought 
to Dp, as well i3is to hear. fiTou say, and ycm 
£iy truly, that* mere preaching \(all not fave us.; 
and we say with equal truth,, mere hearing will not 
iHhre you. Never will you attend the dispensation 
of the word aright, till you mike the end which 
God has iii view in spealdng, your end in hearing. 
And can ydu ima^ne thaet the design of the bleffed 
God in favouring you with his *^ glorious gospeV from 
fibbath to sabbath, is anfwered, if while you r^ular- 
ly enter Ikis courts, you Idways return the same ; if afc 
ter all the sermons you have applauded for twenty 
or forty years, you are found as malignant, as covet- 
ous, as full of the world as before ; or your profitic^ 
appears only in some dead notions, very well laid out 
in your minds j in a capacity to weigh preachers in 
the niceft fcalesof orthodoxy ; or in the ufeful«ii- 
ployment of fplitting hairs^ and tying and untying 
knots in cdiynon thread ? What ! does the *' gpQpel 
"of yo^r laWation^ inteml nothing more than to 
make you viiionaries, oat trtflo^Ms this "teaming 
" us, that denying ungodUneis and woctfy luft* they 
"flieuld live, fobedy, righteowly, and gjpdly » the 

d^ER. VI.] And destrvei Attention. 129 

** present world r* To J>ersons concerned for the hon- 
our of the gospel, and the salvation of mankind, the 
christian world presejits an iffefting prospeft. Never 
was the" word of God more plentifully preacheds. 
never did so many * receive the Grace of God in 
••vainl** Never was there more seed sown; never 
did so much fall ** by the way- side,** ** on stony pla- 
•*^ ces,** and *^ among thorns P* How little does even 
th^ g60d ground^ yield ! Where* is the preacher, the 
iSofc of whose sabbaths is not embittered by the re-r 
view of Unprofitableness ? You invite us to your tables, 
you crowd us in our temples ; but you compel us to 
retird from * both, complaining, ^* Who hath believed 
^ oili' report, and to whom is the arm of the Lord, re- 
** V^aled ?" We condemn your praftlce ; you thank 
t|8 for otir. good s^rmoiis, and proceed. Your appro- 
bation does not hinder your sinning, nor your sinning, 
your approbation. Where are the evidences of our 
success ? are they to be heard in the inquiry^ " Sirs^ 
" what must I do to^be saved ?** Are they to be seen 
in your deadness to the world, in 'your self-denial, in 
your taking up the cross, in your heavenly-minded- 
nesft, in serving your generation according to the 
win of God, in your being examples to others ? How 
cfaiU-I ioipress you with the importance of this, or by 
wliat motiveB can I enforce upon you this piraAical at- 
tABtion to the gospel you hear ? 

SItaH Purge the danger of delusion, ^d say with the 

a^tle lames, ** Be ye doers 'of the word, and not 

^^hfekrers only, decdving your ownselves." Shall I 

remind you of « a fodish builder,'* who reared *• his 

^ house upon the s^nd; and the rain descended,' and 



'^ M 

tta The Gospel defHawik [Ssiu yaL 

^the floods came) and the winds bletr, and beat 
^ upon that house, and it fell, and great was the fall 
^ of it/' Such according to our Saviour will b^ the 
iatal disappointment oi^ all those who entertain a hope 
of safety separate from holiness ; who have been lulled 
to sleep by an unsandified attendance on ordiQances ^, 
who hear ^^ these sayings of his, and do them not." . 

Shall I remind you of the precarious tenure o£ youjr 
privileges, and say with our Saviour, ^^ Yet a littlf . 
*^ while is the light with you j walk whUe ye have the 
^^ ligh^ lest darkness come upon you/' There are no 
calls of mercy beyond the grave j and " what is yqur^ 
*' life ? it is even a vapour that appeareth for a little; 
•* time, and then vanisheth away." The Jews haddis-^ 
tinguished privileges ; but *' the kingdom of God. was 
^^ taken from them, and given to a nation .bringing. 
** forth the FRuira thereof." Where now are , the. 
churches of Asia ? Tour candlestick may be removed. ^ 
Tou it)ay be rendered incapable *of hearing. Efficacy 
may be withheld from the means ; and surely if any 
thing can provoke the Supreme Being, to take away. 
ordinances, or to make them useless, it must be your 
awful abuse of them. 

Shall I mention the happiness^ q£ those who receive- 
the gospel, '* not in word <Mily i'* *^ And it captie to 

pass, as he spake th^se things^ a certain womaa of 
'Vthe company lifted up her voU:e and said unto Bim^: 
^ btessed b the womb that bare thee» and the psps 
^ which thou hast sucked. But be said, yea, noher 
<« Bi^ESsan are they that hear the w^rd of CKkI, and 
" KBEP it." ^ " If ye know thesie things^ H4wr are ye if 
^^ye DO them r ^^Wbpso loofa^ch . into the jnMt^- 

Sbr. V1.3 Jind deserves Attention. isi 

^ law tif fiberty^' and condnueth therein, he being not 
**a forgetful hearer, but a doe^r. of the work, this 
^* man shall be blessed in his deed. . 

Need I inform you, that thefe means when unim- 
proved will be found injurious ; that the word of God 
is one of thofe things, which if unprofitable, become 
petnidous .; that if it does not nourish as food, it wiH 
deftrqy like pcnfoh ; if it does not soften, it unll har- 
den ; if it does not juftify , it w31 condenm. 

-For remember the aiwfol account which you will be 
required to give of all your hearing, when caQed to 
appear b^ore the 'bar of Grpd. Then those sermons 
which you now fo eafily forget, will be perfeAty to- 
irived in your recoUedion. The bible, from which 
you' have been so often addreffedj wiH be called forth, 
and you wiU be judged out of this book. In tliis judg- 
ment will rife up againft you to condemn you, the 
queen of the south, ^* for «he came from the uttermoft 
<^ parts to hear the wifdom of Solomon, and behold a 
" greater than Solomon is here.** In this judgment 
will rife up againfl you to condemn you, ^^ the men 
" of Jfineveh, foa- they repented at 4he preaching of 
^' Jonah, and behold a greater than Jonah is her^" 
In this judgment wiS rise up against you to condemn 
you, all ^our fellow-worshippers, who having the £ime 
nature and passions with yourfelves, and never having 
heard truths more powerful dian thofe which you 
have heard, " turned at his reproof j" •* sought the 
^^Lord while he was to be found, and called upon 
*^ Um while he was near." " In this judgment y^^ 
rise up againfi you to condemn you, those minifters 
mh» voukl gladly ha^e saved net only themfelves. 


The Gospel demands^ &c 


but you who heard them — While " the Saviour shaQi 
*^ be revealed fropi heaven, Y^th his mighty, aagels jui 
* ^* flaoiing fire, taking yengeai^ce on them that knov^ 
'* not God, and that* ob£ y not the gospel of our Lord 
<< Jesus Christ." . And can^ you say his language will 
be unreasonable? ^'Because I have called, and ye re- 
<^ fused, I have stretched out my hand, and no man 
^* regarded, but ye have set at nought aU my counsel, 
*< and would none of my reproof. I also will laugh 
** at your calamity, I will mock when your fear conr-r 
*^ eth ; when your fear cometh as desolation, and your 
^' destruAion cometh as a whirlwind ; when distress 
sd angttiah cometh upon you V* If you have never 
rd to purpofe before, begin to<bty; •* to-day, if 
ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.** If 
you are not lost to ^1 seqse of your own welfare ; if you 
are not reserved to sacrifice eternal life \ if you have 
not '^ ms(de ^ covenant with death,*' and with hell are 
not at an ** agreement," *^ see that ye refuse not hin) 
** that speaketh." It is the voice of friendship, it h 
the voice of conscience; it is the voice of reason, it is 
the voice of Scripture, it is ^* the voice of thb archangel 
^* and the trump of God** — ^' Jf any man hav» 








He?, u. 10. 


AtL fsmeSf IN BJunGiNG MAur sons vuro glort^ to uaks 


*' FOR P^y thoughts are not your 
•* thoughts, Q^ther are ypur ways my ways, saith the 
^ \<pxd. For as the heavens are highej: than the earthy 
^ so are niy ways higt^er than your ways, and my 
^ thoughts than your thoughts." These words, •my 
brethren, contain a refledion always ^^asonable, al* 
ways useful^ always necessary, when we would ^' re- 
* gard tjiie worJIf: of the Lord, or consider the opera«* 
^< tion c^ his hand." It may be exemplified in num* 
berless instanoes, but iu none so easily and so fully, as. 
in the redemption of the world by means of a Media* 
tor, ^ obedient unto deatb» even the death of the 
" cross.'* The. sun never beheld §uch a scene. His- 
tory records no such a transadiom The scheme would 
never havje entered the n)jbd of any finite intelligence—. 
" It is the Lord% doing, and it is marvellous in our eye.'* 
" The thing proceeded Iprth from the Lord of Hosts, 

19* Tie SHgMiigi cf [Sbk. vii« 

^ who is wondarful in oouniel, and excellent in ^oric- 
^ ing/' ^ It is the wi£dom of Ood in a myfiery ;^ 
aod the nK»e we are enlightened firom above to ex- 
amine its sublime 'Contents, the more of their perfeo* 
tion fliall we cfifco^er, the more worthy of God wiU 
they appear. ^^ For it became Him, for whom are 
*^ am things, and hy whom are all things, in bringing 
^^ many ions unto glory, to make the Captain of that 
^ £dvation perfect through sufierings/' 

L Behold the charactes. of the SuPKum 


^ WHOM AR£ ALL THINGS }^' die or^;inal Caufe, the 
fimOUtnd of the whde univerie jo£ beings, malttrial ot 
fpiritual ; '* in heaven, or on earth ; viitble, or invi&^ 
^ Ue ; whether they be thrones or dominions, prinoi^ 
^ pafities or powers ; aU things were created bt Hin^ 
^ and FOB hinu" Nothing is more common for i^ak- 
ers and writers, when they wifli to mendmi efiiMmed 
perfonages, than to defcr&e, rather than to name them. 
By feizing in our reprefentation ibmething which has 
endeared or diiUnguiflied diefn ; by avaifing ourselves 
of fome qualtties^pr actions, which have given them 
peculiar and fuperior dums, we can beftow deferv^ 
honour, and did the impreffion we defire to make on 
At minds of thofe we addrefiu The admirers of po- 
etry undeiftand me, whai I fay ^ the author of the 
^ Talk." My countrymen feel, when I utter, ^< the he- 
^^ ro of the Nile.'' The ingenuous youth yields, when 
I befeech him by the tears of. her ^ who bare him,'' 
We cannot defcribe God by what he is in himfelf, but 
by what he is in his reladons, and in his works ; Ijry 

Smu tiu} Our Savkurmciss^. 19S* 

mfcat lie dfia- as our Creatior and Governor ; as one 
who oirns us, and may diqxMse of us as he pleases i, 
OD whom we entirely depend, and to whotn we are 
uoiTersafiy accountable. 

But who can teU how far this " all things" extends K 
Who can imagine the dimensions of his empire, the 
divernty of hi» subjiects, the infinite number of his pro* 
ductions, each of which is an expression of his wisdom^ 
power, and goodness, and a source of revenue fromi 
which his glory is derived I 

And why this magnificence of dtfscrifitioB ? To- SXk' 
the viind. with rererence, to rai£e our expe<;^tiQn, tpL 
remiad us of the End and Author of our salvatkui,. to 
shew us the prindidb fiun which he acts ; that^ it is^ 
not necessity, but kindneos ; thac he cannot standin 
need of us, or our services, being .^^ exalted above a)l * 
'^^Uessing and pndse/' it is by a display of his majesty,, 
to draw forth oar admiration of has mercy. ^ The » 
^^ hard ia high above afl nations, and his glory above r 
*^.tiie heavens* Who is like unto the I^ord our God, 
^ who dwelleth on high ? who humbleth himsdf tobe- > 
^ hold the things that are in heaven and in the earth } » 
^Mie ratseth up the foot out of the dust, and fi^eth the ^ 
^ Aeedy out of the dunghill, that he my fet him with • 
^^ princes, even with the prince of bis people/* Coq- ^ 
template then a Being, whofe goodness equals his 
gliandeur. Behold him seeking his glory in our wel- 
fare. See him, regardless of all our unworthinsss, 
and before we had expressed any desire, devifing ' 
means to rescue us from our ignorance, vice, infamy, 
and misery ; and forming a scheme of pure compassion, 
derigned to raise us to a state of happiness, superior tQ 

m fif S^erings of \%vL ^. 

the ebnditioh in wliidi niaii' waif dffgiha% plat^'i)! 
For, " . 


H. Observe the end which the God of all grace 


**' GLORY.** Wheil of old, lie detached' from the na- 
tions of the earth a people for his name, he destitied 
thiein to posses^ the lanH'df Canaan. This pj:Y)mis^(!^ 
toSntry, into which he engaged to bring them, excited 
the departure of the Israelites from Egypt, aild enco^r*^ 
aged them in all their wanderings in the wilderness. 
It was a state in which they expected rest, peace, abun* 
daiice ; ^ a llmd flowing wfth nnilk and honey ; a land' 
** Vrheteiii there was no scarceness ; a land on which 
*' the Ldrd's eye was fit)m the beginning even to the 
•* end of the year.*^ But' this was only " a shadow of 
" good things to come ;" an emblem of that " better ,'• 
that ** heavenly country,'* towards which " the seed of 
Abraham by faith** are travelling ; where " remains 
a rest for the people of God ;** where " they shall 
enter into peace ;** where ** they shall hunger no 
** more, neither thirst ariy more, neither shall the sun 
" light on them, nor any heat ; for the Lamb, that is.. 
" in the midst of the throne, shall feed them, and shall 
•* lead them unto living fountains of waters : and God. 
*• shall wipe away all tears from their eyes." 

This future blessedness of the righteous is very 
commonly in the scriptures expressed by " glory." 
It is a state of perfection, of magnificence, of splen- 
dour, of honour. It will contain every kind of excel- 
lency, and every kind of excellency displayed. The . 
place will be glorious ; the company willT be glonqus \ 





Sbr. viiJ 0ur Saviour Necessary. 137 

bur bodies will be glorious ; glorious will be our work, 
our pleasures, our reward, our praise. We shall have 
feffowsfaip with the dignified Redeemet \ " we shall be 
** glorified together ;" " for when He who is our life 
^* BhiH appear, we shall also appear with him in glory.*' 

We are reminded of the character under which we 
shall obtain this happiness j it is for ^' sons,'' not ea* 
emies, not straiigers. Such^ the people of God nat- 
urally are j but by regeneration and adoption he gives 
them the quality, and the clain^s of children ; ^and on 
this relation the inheritance depends \ " if children, 
^ then heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ.*' 

Nor will the possessors of it be few in number. Th^ 
heavenly inheritance is not like the earthly Canaan, 
confined to the Jew only; Gentiles also participate. 
The middle wall of partition is broken down, and the 
gospel reveals a comnnion salvation, and gpens a passage 
to heaven from all the diversities of huniaq condition ; 
and remember " many sons" are on their way ♦* to 
** glory." Do not diminish their number by unchar* 
itable exclusions, or reduce it by gloomy sus{»cions^^ I 

*^ Wot ye not what the Scripture saith of Elias, how 
^^ he maketh intercession to God against Israel,, saying, 
*^L6rd, they have killed thy prophets, and digged 
<^ down thine altars ; and I am left alone, and they 
*' seek my life. But what saith the answer of God 
** unto him ? I have reserved to myself seven thousand 
*^ men who have not bowed the knee to the image of 
^ Baal." He has always his hidd^ ones ; many more 
than you are aware of, " know his name, and love his 
•* salvation ;" ahd though his followers may appear a 
small flock, when viewed in coinparison with the un« 



1S« The Siifferings cf , [Sbr. 3ra!» 

godly who surround them \ when they shall << come 
^' from the ea$t, and from the west/' and shall be gath- 
ered t(^ether from '^ all nations^ and kindred, and 
*^ people, and tongues 5" they will be found " a great 
^ multitude, which no man can number." Such is 
the purpose of grace Which He is accomplishing ; and, 

III. Observe the m£an& by which he executes his 
design — He constitutes Jesus Christ " the caj^taikt 
•* OF THEik SALVATION." God does nothing imme- 
i diately with man. He carries on alt his transadions 

w\th us through a Mediator. Th^ restoration of his 
people, including their redemption, conversion, perse* 
verauce, and future glory, is committed to Him ; ixA 
with Him we have immediately to dp in all the con- 
cerns of faith, holiness, and consolation. When God 
would bring the Israelites into the land of promise, he 
placed them under the guidance of Joshua ; when he 
would bring innumerable myriads of perishing sinners 
to i^ory, he puts them under the conduft of the Lord 
, Jesus Christ. Hence they are so often said to be given 

to him by the Father ; they are given to him, not that 
he may receive benefit from th^m, but that they may 
receive benefit from him^ As so many captives, they 
are given him tx) ransom as their Redeemer; as so 
many sheep, for htm to feed as their Shepherd ; as so 
many scholars, iot him to educate as their Teacher y 
fls so many soldiers, for him to lead along to vidory 
and triumphs, as "the Captain of their salvation." 

For the term by which He is here held forth, car- 
ries with it an implication, that there are difficulties to 
be eAcouAtered in the way to glory, and obstacles to 



Sbh. vih] wrr Saviour Necessary. ^ 189 

be overcome ; that the christian life is a warfare ; and 
that as soon as we turn our "fijces Zionward," wc 
must expeA to fight. With this accord the language 
of the Scripture, and the experience of every good"^ 
man. And, xny dear hearers, if you thinjc otherwise, 
you are deceived ; you may go asleep to hell, but you 
cannot go asleep to heaven. It is exertion, opposition? 
contention, every step of the way. Did they who 
have gone before you find religion an easy thing; 
What was their language ? *' Lord, how are they in- 
** creased that trouble me ! many there be that rise up. 
** against me ; many there be which say of my tou!^ 
" there is no help for him in God.'* " We wrestle * 
'^ not against fles(h and blood, but against principalities, 
^* against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of 
^ this world, against spiritual wicl^edness in high pla^ 
•* ces." There are some here this morning, wlio are 
compelled to use the same language. Yes, " without 
^ are fightings, and within are fears.'* Your enemies 
are numerous and poweribl, and compared with theni 
you feel yourselves to be nothing. But you are not 
without encouragement -; your " Redeemer is mighty** 
—Jesus is "the Captain of your salvaticm/' "He 
*^ teaches" your "hands to war," and your *^ fingers 
** to fight." He arrays you in " the whole armour » 
*^ of God." He issues orders, and regulates all your 
motions. He goes before, and animates you by his 
own example. He replenishes your strength ; treads 
down your enemies before you ; makes you more than 
conquerors ; and gives you a crown of life. Whence^" 
^^ O worm Jacob,** are you so courageous ? How can 
you -^^ thresh the i;nountains 1*^' Tb^ wta^ is- diiftriBssing ; 

140 The Sufferings of [Ser. vii. 

the country through \diich you travel is formidably.. 
How will you be able to reach the land that is to b^ 
given you a very far oflF? " Jesus Christ is every thing 
*^ I need ; he is given for a leader, and a copiinander 
to the people. I place myself under his care ; he 
will go where I go; engage the foes I engage; he 
'* will leave me in no sitiiation ; his ^kill is infinite, his 
^' power is almighty; he lias led thous^ds, not one; 
*^ failing; on him ) lew; because he lives, I shall live^ 
^* also ;. if I have not struck a blow, I may strike with 
*' confidence ; or if I have fallen through a blow re* 
' V ceived, I cap say, Rejoice not against me, O mine^ 
« *' enemy, though I fall I shall arise, though I si( tq 
^< darkness, the Lord will be a light unto me." 

A Frierd and Helper fto divine, 
- DocB my vreftk €oUrag;e raise ; 
|Ie makes the glorious yictory minei 
And hia shall be the praise. 

The Jews always expected that the Messiah would 
be " the Captain of their salvation :" they looked for, 
him in no other charaftcr. But Mistaking the nature 
of this salvation, thqy grossly erred with regard to the 
liature of his work. They conceived of him as a tem* 
poral prince, who should rush forth with his '* sword 
"upon his thigh,* "conquering and to conquer;" 
. subduing the nations of the earth, ' and giving " his 
" people the heritage of the heathen." To their car- 
nal raiinds the manner of his vidtory was a paradox. 
They could not conceive how he could overcome by 
^ying, or by a cross reach a throne ; " we have heard 
** out of the law that Christ abideth forever : and how 
<*sayest thou, the Son of man must be lifted up?" 

$£!.• vii.] W Saviour Ne^eitary. I4t 

But in this wsy he was ^^ to be crqwned vnth g^oiy 
f« and honour/' His sufferings were not opposed to 
hia exaltation ; they led to it ; and the apostle, 

IV. Reminds us of ths manner in which he db» 
tains his distinction, and is prepared for the discharge 
of his office-*— he f* is made PBUfECT th&ougm 
*^ 8UF5ERING6.'* The sufierings of the Saviour are 
descril)ed in the gospels with simplicity and grandeuf 
combined. Nothing can add to the sdemnity and' 
force of the exhibition ; ^nd if we are not affected with 
the relation, it shews that our hearts ^re harder than 
the rocks, which could not retain their . insensibility 
when ** the. i.ord of life and glory" expired. The 
subjeqt has often come under your review. Sometimes 
we have called ^pon you to consider his sufierings as 
peculiar and unparalleled ; and you have heard a 
plaintive Saviour sayipg^ ^* is it nothing to. you, all ye 
** that pass by ? behold, and see if there be any sdrr 
^* row like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, 
"wherewith the Lord hath afflicted me in the day, of . 
" his fierce anger/ We have sometimes considered 
his siifferiiigs as foreknown, and led you to imagine 
what were his feelings while reading the prophecies, , 
or foretelling himself the circumstances of his passion. 
Fronj your eye futurity is kindly concealed. Could 
some immediately informed of the troubles 
through which perhaps one year only will require you 
to wade, you would be ovei whelmed in the prospect. 
But He saw the end from the beginning, and advanced, 
with Judas, and t;he high prieft, and the nails, and the 
cross, full iq view.. You have se^n that his sufferings , 

1*4 ' The Sufferings of |;Ser, vn. 

were not the sufferings of an hour or a day ; they were 
perpetual j from Bethlehem to Calvary ** he was a 
^* man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.'* You 
have seen him suffering in his condition, in his charac- 
ter, in his body, in his soui This morning you are 
led to another view of the same interesting sul]ject, the 
accomplishment which our Saviour derived from them y 
he was ** made perfect through sufferings/' It may be 
exemplified in two respects ; first, by way of discove- 
ry ; secondly, by way of qusdification. 

In perusing history, what characters prindpaUy et^- 
gage, and improve us f Those wl^o have struggled 
through trying and awful scenes. Read the Scrip- 
tures ; fix your eyes on Job, and Joseph, on David, and 
Daniel, anii Paul ; were they not all *' made perfect 
•* through sufferings ?" The picture would have np 
beauty or effect without shades. It is on the rainy 
doud, the heavenly bow spreads its variegated tints. 
The character of the hero is formed, and his laurels 
are gathered only in the hostile field, among ^' the 
•* confused noise of warriors, and garments rolled 
•* in blopd.** Never was the glory of a prince however 
illuftrious rendered complete, without some sudden re- 
verse of fortune which tried him ; some heavy calam? 
ity, under which he had an opportunity to discover 
his internal resources. That nobility is the truest, 
which a man deriveSi not from his pedigree, but frotti 
himself ; that excellency is the greatest, which is pefl 
sonal ; that glory is the most estimable, which is fixed 
in our intellectual and moral attributes ; not that which 
a man locks up with his cash, or puts by with his rib- 
jbon \ all these are extrinsical, they are no parts of th^ 

Se R. vii.]} tmr Savmt Necessary. )4a 

nan \ they are appendages ; adcfitkms suppose defi-^ 
dencies : he is the most perfect who needs them not. 
Suppose our Saviour had passed throi^gh the world 
smoothly, attended with all the littleness of riches, and 
the insignificance of pomp } how limited would have 
been his example ! how insipid the narrative of his 
fife ! how ^ uninteresting his character ! If there had 
been any thing of the beautiful, there would have beea 
pothiiig of the sublime. How does he appear ^^ Christy 
*' the wisdom of God, and the power of God ?'* As 
•• crucified." Where did he spoil " principalities and 
.^* powers, making a shew of tliem openly, and tri- 
•* umphing over them ?"* On the ** crols.*' To what 
period does he refer, when he says, '^ now is the judg* 
^* ment of tfiis world, now shall the prince of this 
*' world be cast out ?" The hour of his death« This 
he viewed as the season, m which he was to be mag- 
nified and adored ; '^ the hour is come, that the Son 
" of man should be glorified." This was the consum- 
mation of his unexampled career of excellence : ^^ I 
^^must do wonders to-day and to-morrow, and the 
•* third day I must be perfected.*' Here is the finish ^ 
and the wonders and miracles which attended hi& 
sufferings, were not to be compared with the principles 
^nd virtues, which he displayed in enduring them. 
Of what in his history did Moses and Elias speak,, 
when they appeared in the transfiguration ; *^ They 
^ spake of the decease, which He was to accomplish at 
•* Jerusalem.'* In what does ©very christian rejoice ? 
^ God forbid that I should glory, save in the crofs of 
'^ our Lord Jesus Christ.'^ What is the theme of ev* 
ery ministef ? *^ I determined to know nothing, save 



i44 The Sifffermgi (f ' l^ttL^vii. 

^ Jemi Christy and him drucified/' What is the lan- 
guage of the glorified above ? «^ Worthy is the Lamb' 
*» that wa^ slain;" Thus the sufferings of the Saviour 
were the means of displaying the glories of his charac- 
ter, and of procuring for Uim unbounded and everlast- 
ing honours. 

We are also to consider Him relatively ; for he in- ' 
terposed on our behalf, and having engaged for a par- 
ticular piirpose, whatever qualified him for the execu- 
tion of it tended to make him perfect. Hence a bbdy 
was prepared him ; hence the miseries he endured. 
'* Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh 
^* and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the 
^< same : that through death he might dest* oy him that 
" had the power of death, that is the devil ; and deliv- 

er them, who through fear of death, were all their 
life-time subject to bondage* For verily he took not 
^^ on him the nature of angels ; but he took on him 
" the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things, it 
" behoved him to be made like unto his brethren ; that 
*' he might be a merciful and faithful high-priest in 
*^ things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for 
" the sins of the people." We shall see more of this, 

V. By examining the reasonableness and expe- 
diency of such a dispensation-^-" it became Him.*' 
In proportion to. the greatness of a character, will be 
Ills conviction of the importance of order ; and the 
more necessary will it be for him to observe it, because 
pT the number of his relations, the diversity of hb con- 
liections, and the influence of his example. Order is 
essential to virtue and to happiness in creatiu-es ; and 

1.^ , \ * .... * , , 

j4ffl,iikift fyi?Wfl3r»y,he4a iijfli i fpgfd by wafprot thougjjti 
ipdeptiiicl^^, h« is gprverntd ^ /vIm.) tbovgh sotm:- 
eign, h* ,si^ofl^ to biv^i and ooif.Aws |iirhi( *^be•r 

3itt :«9e^ are never iBbre. liqdde to preatofsption ftiid 
nusQke> tbiai ;W^ wci t^ke upon w to decide what 
ihe Supreipe Being ought to do ^ or having laid^ .^lo9fnr 
^a partkiilar jjrsteoiy to suppose be must c^broi tp i|^ 
Or forifeit his charad:er in the eves of the uiuverse* . 
8^ch daring Unguage^we have ^ometiqaes hegrd ; but, 
O ye juc^^ of t])e Almighty^ ^^ who hath knpwn the 
<^ mind of the Lord, bt being his counsellor hath 
^ taiKrht him f To whom will ye liken me, or shall l 
^* be equal with the holy One ?** *• His way is in th^ 
^^ sea, an4 his path in the great water?, and bis foot* 

^* steps are not tnown.** 

• • - *... • ••• » 

;Ther^ is a period appirpaching, in which our eat 
p^eijy f<3r f pimnation will be enlarged; the prejudi^ 
jt^s ^hi(^ bi^ our minds, will be done away ; and th{{ 
^an of ddvine providence and grace, will be accom- 
plished and eicplained ; th£N the reasons of his pro- 
ceedings will |)e as siitisfa^ry to us, a$ they will 
pJEove honcmrabte to him i then ^U that is now darli^ 
witt be eqUgdteiieds all tbat is now dUord^ly will be 
arranged, aul that is now detached ^d sqtttered wilj 
be ui9Jte4 in one beautiful whole; and we shall ^e^ 
thait notjiing was defective, nothing superfluous, npth-- 
ioyg insignificant ; every thing was necessary, nothing 
could be added to it, nothing could be taken frbm it. 
0ut it ^may be asked, is there no satis&dion to be ob- 
tjp^ed before this iUustri^iis period arrives? ^Fhere |$, 


For W'^fr^ can iiscieit^n Aat Odd lias par^iied'iMiT^piif^ 
ticidar mode <^ a^ifHdii, we may imidiediatrif infer die 
rei!titude of it, fi^oito the adknowlidged'^ei^edk^^ of 
th« tfivine chainatA^ ; and dier« b^iM mediQili'beMrw*! 
this, and ^* Charging fakti fedisUy ;-' he does nM: Mr. 
nteaas UBC^rtflM^, d# fb ttry (MrHsuecMS ; Mb (fiie irlMr 
he sees tifi€»fbgty Ids end^^ and M^ w«^ lo'k.^ Agaft* i ' 
!f He has told us him^etf tteit Mch 1 step b^tsisie Mti^ 
we are boQhd ta beKir^e Mto; hmvever Itrange and- 
extepttonaffle It Ihay appeskr to lis. And if m addicioit 
to' thisT, he ha^ cbndcf^cended in a mea^r6 io expbin 
hiittself, and to shed some ligM upon^the' s^eft, we^ 
are thankfuHy to* avail ourselves of it. 

' My brethren, we ihay apply aH this to the subjeft 
before us, ^We know He did *• make the Captain of 
*• our aalvatioh perfect through suflFerings,**^ and •'his 
**^Ways* are judgment." He has expressly assured us^ 
in his Word, that ft became him to do so ; and as he l» 
not mistaken, so he cannot deceiVe. He has also dis- 

4 * • * 

cbvered eripugK of his motives to satisfy every humbk 
inquirer, and to draw forth our admiration ; *• Oh 
^ the depths of the riches, both of the wisdoih and 
•* knowledge of God !** fiut all this is too general. 
Let us approach a few particular reasons which He 
has enabled us to assign, from which the expediency 
of the sufferings of our Saviour will ajppear. 

The first is derived from the necessity of experience 
jsi our Guide. For how desirable was it that he who 
was appointed to lead us' to glory, isKould himself be 
personally acquainted with the dangeh, di^uItieS| 
and trials, to which his followers are exposed In their' 
way thither f Ncrtihing would 90 powerfully engage the 

• ' 

cmA^Bwm'wkkk we m« ti^ piioe >&: Im. Saqpeiv 

ettdtf in^et^ tsae.e»0Gni»gii 4^A^ce$ biM: set 
tfe a8tAe&- ftfil Mk «i> tfie gKf iui4 pr^sperom^ bitf 

^< IM^ ^toy ne^ O yei»y,6rU»()$i ivi^]^^ 

«ilQtHirtMo4et wMmIi ]K)U ]»eJMd a 4^Q^*Qr«a(wrie .W 
l|Onr^^ «yfnA .cm Ostet ka» hia.Tiew^^ feel his jSQi^a* 
ti<jfns^ and weep with hisu IVliD* ^e the* most JkdB4 
a&d humane? They who have been nmch la the 
«fidiool of afflidiOQ { there, the social and tender aftc* 
tions are nurtured* ^* Se kind to strangers,'' isays God 
tpUcaid^ «4y ? ^fer ye khbw the heut of a stran- 
««,g%r^ for yt ^weiri fttrfiuigem- in a attradge knd/' Th(e 
|B^-(¥ie«$ uhdir Che law wis ^ taken fhmi among 
^ fiien,'<ikatl0e might have coqipasdon on the ignorant^ 
^ and on them that are out of the way, for that he 
^ himsdf also h poxnpassed with infirmity/ All this 
%s gratidty api^caUe to our Lord and Saviour; ^*fbr 
^^ ia thfrt he himself hath suffered being tempted, he if 
«« able to succour them that are tempted.^ I%k>u^ 
hia^atsaie it changed, hb nature is the saniie^ ^ for we 
^ AAT8 hot am iligh-Prieft wfatdn eantiot be touehed 
^ Willi the feefiilg of put iofirfflitie^ i>ut was in aM 
^ points' tempted like as we ate, yet without sin." 
This opens a sojutce of «xqui&e eoniiolation, and we 
fed the |fleaaii^ motive^ ^ Let us therefore come 
bddly toito the throne df grate, that we may obtain 
^iMrc^, aittd &id grace to hdp in time of need." He 
yoitf sorrows,^ A« you poor? He Jfenows 



your indigence ; not ^e sonie of your vreaiKtf neigh<< 
bours, 'who may accidentally hear tof it '^ report^ 
while they are indul^ng 'only in hi»iry. 4le '^vhat 
poor ; *^ foxes faxve hcdeSf ^d the binfa of tike -^ 
^ have nests, but the Soif^of nian'ha(d bM where fa 
^lay hi$ head:*' Cfo you siifffr MpMadi ; atod ar« 
thinigsludtb yourcbSirge^^wbSeh yc^' \fA<fWhiftt He 
sees you, who was <>noe deemed-*^ a glutldti, -and d 
^ winebtbb^, a friend of poMcans affil ^hsuen/* ^ a 
« Samaritan,** «^one who had a de^,"* ^a iidiTCr up 
« of th[e people.*' Dd ymi fed e^ suggeMions f • Thi 

enemy app]t)9iched Him t * * *»' 

* \ 

He knows what sore teip||tati9Qs t^eui^ 
For He lias felt t(ie same^ 

Axe yoia locking kxwuxdtP the hoiir of ^doatjk 2 Yowt 
felbw-dMatiuis^ and your npniiteci iiw^ 
awtatn and to soothe you; but «B . tUs/comeft. fttW 
jpersoBs who hwe no ^Kperisi^ae i t^ey ,hmi|r not wh^ 
JU is to die I b«t Q«o wil) bt pear ^ ^ 4B0pi£garjt jdboe 
/<upon thy bed of Jtsm^ishing^" wl|0 : his ptpae^ 
through t^e tryiag *«eiie | . ii|d^> knows, theieeliagi of . 
human natu^ in the aepdvaty>n.oi^ aovlaciit lp^y» iit, 
leaving beloved ftiend^awi rebtioas* 

' A seeond rcMOft is to be dieriired from liiir.cfxaflBph^^ 
it.^ras necessary ibr hkn to shew us the uluence of 
Dolinesi in ^ s^te of riuffecteg. ^^AMSA<mfi^Bxt^ 
yoidaUe } they pcoq^y a Isfsrfgi (NrppcMion of liie^ 
pf godliness } many parts of rettgbm i:el:^.eatiaely fo* 
mftringf ami ^itfery part rcc^vi^ a iw*fe 4rpfu if* 
The chrktJMi hfififin ft^mieA frws h«s triflic^.thfMi.ftfWit 
Ifk en)0)f»i«iyts^ Jkit. we ave Ulfie buHpdi» mnnm^ 
tomed to the. yok^j we are ttu)killed in the sciencf (tf 


pmkt^ i>lwd>i>ci } e9fm nSbtt the eipaience of y^an 

bf a^nrogv, jps Iodlmt lk:|^ of tlie hoty inystery '^ pf gufi. 

ftlnrfaig silliCSKA; wd of pati^iMPc/' We need in-. 

stniedoa.'f >Hcy«^aift Lta<iflpy the cross ? How on 

/<lMiider It oiie «f ti^ 4iliSf Uemngs ? What dispesi- 

i<ljkm& MQr I la. a«iiritfa towards Xtod, 'who b the Au* 

^ thor of cthii^trOtiMe I or^,,who are the 

«i ins&itniaiMs of it ? How must Ir^ulate my thoughts, 

^^ WDrib, add carriage ? Am I lorl»dden to feel, as well 

^^ 09* t0 -nlmnnar i Must I in<to%e no desire, use no 

$^*^M0ii9 oCn^MT' Go, axudpOs, inquirer, .and ccai- 

template Hkn-^'^ ^^ suffered for Uf, leering. us an ej:*^ 

^^mgist that we should fidlow hk steps*** *See him 

«idiiii&g every uliffignity—4>ut ^' wlftn he was reviled, 

-f* he revQed not again ; when he suffered, he threat- 

•^ lAieii liM, ' iMt cbffltt&tedr hiiuMlf^to Jibn that jvdgeth 

S^'ril^eoo^.^ lieflT'llbt prayer-^^ imirderei^»^ 

•I^SrtiMlr, foigbi^ tbbm; foit tk^ knofw not ?what they 

.^t do*''. M^Kfe^hia t femgibfa m the : gMdeiH^^ Fatl^t^ 

i.^iiic be?poftifaIe, kt thisxtip pass from me ; never* 

:'Uluil«i, m>t asa. will, hot as thoo wik." ki all tUs 

.ttft 4fm QOt SQ. nndi daank a8>gu]de.; here are none 

jgf those chigb-fkiwn, rhs^mdkadl flic[tt»sions/ which 

pcoild philosq>hy haa often pbcedin the mouths of ifts: 

liexo|»4 ^ aSeotSviio tweosiluUty of pain ; no indtfier- 

.eBflfftoaaSsniig;: w^<s»«jty^wij;h.allits#atttral 

fytiXi»^9.<3f^ «mpir0 of 

'Aaaon aft^^, gnn< V I^ the j»m^ noind b&iig^ yoii 

V which, was sOao inX3ujat J«t^s.'' 

-. A f lord teMott iato befoond mtke demomtfathm 

IvUah'lM miSmag^ gav^ «s «f theidmne benevolence. 

4«ilM»ed soois^ fioid it no ^isyttKing to believe in 

' » 


il#w ••CT'^JpiPllpf'y v.. ,|^i|P^%M9 


Jam, and jwdgwg •( tken SUfmmt 9itw^ hf ^inmi, 
mdm^ it ^|iard.«a tpwitiiM (^km fftSkf «Mh that 
Chxi. tft rdKJ^ /* «« itt|actfie4 ^ Kwwtf f iil^p» Ibr -il 
-*! filMir abcmfinitioiM^" inA tft^tiilMir ««%riDM«iiiliafei^ 
Jbeis wiffioff ¥> *^ tpsiewe them 0mim»\f,'Wu&^ kKtt 
** thflSEi inetj" Jdow I c|p«iot! ffim- find, .tiU 46M 
tippcan indf* 'i AaH aevipr ai^roarii hi«i,.vtai IlMpt' 
in him. Htddaa ataMXig the treM of cIm |pii40%' 
."ffsbkbrr wy <Se9ir»h^ dnfrep npei it « :«i1|f. tlismSct 
«f cwfy f»a cdH me &»rtlw . It to. tiNtfiyiiwin ■liiM 
<Miteiiigr«6. bjickto ^(9d).i«j» tbtf. i|in||ft fiAMfpit 
;«f o»r re»toctfi«a i. tiU tiMflrbf t|KMl«dl» fl^tiiips <"#> ^ 
«ffecM44 To fhfx Uma^ tMJ$we «ft is dw luiqa— 
agixtf;. view j to riMswiii; «fi Uaostif ta MctwUenCigk 
as «M» .aa twar we Mi lantt. ^^^iuci^i9mimtaaf% 
tftjkeep «s ^om tuflUBf tgwui .tl» jfal^ by.^ta iwt»raM 
«9ndiHi<m ".time it fw.liope j*' to<saMMiii&4«t nib* 
jpkviay feav 8^ >q4 taaUvure va ii^ Us preieaal, iMr«i^ 
gleawd. ta . aacnfi<» lus own Sof. Up infiMeacs'la 
«aai]y dnwii ( ** He 4iMt: spaded oothia ova Soil, ball 
■**cUirarei )»m up ^ us .adl^ licm shaft He not islk^ 
"'idm idao£reeif giveua «9 thin0k^ 'W» MmM 1». 
4deed tJie love ef .>God ia til innwwriiMit bft «Mie% 
wore in his suffsiingB } these- saff^e t^ tbtaietmi 
Jiddta it. If he •^•jU takeorie 9b deair to hta, ^m'M 
'Worthy, one who -always- dM tlie things wUdt. pIMiiied 
him, and faring Umdirotigh such a di^tft of sufleriflg 
xather than we should peerkh ;• we U9 «Qirvipeed that 
he w3l not rdaise pardoo and fraoa t» teiamUDg mn 
Jkexs'y a«d to this «he sa«ed wr>l*n- tuan tm ai i ift . 
«iQ[|it -^ithen they 9««M mi0ufy tjh».gd9dipeli^'(CNk' 

' ^ 

«< |0m4 Mi «ui|pHNi Vk Bom to be a^ propWattMi fior . 
^ '•Ar skMJ* ^ G#d ktfb cmnfiimdadlds^ lore iomvik\ 
^ «^ttB^ dit dMMT wMb we wi»e yM sfancn, Gkrift died fori 
* «<«i.«'*ilfMii tter6 ^m^ bdiig ndW jvi^ed bf iiit; 
^Mclo^, "We ^itMitelMed^fto«l wrath thsoi^ him* 
•^4^ if wii0ti welMie MMoiesy w# weve necoacatd 
^wMdGbd bjr the dtoKli di hii Softs iMckinor^be^ 
« il%MCOiid!ed, we sfaatt Ke savtd by lii& life/* 

B^old a ftmrtti^ reasoa. As divine goodness actsib 
faftVmonf with evMy otliei^ perfedtioti of Kis nature^ 
tlie Msffiarin^ of our Sitviour wi^e designed .to disphy 
thtf glory of God^ as i^e morsd rtdw of the unmrse. 
IWce is no'goyerfiing "Mdiout laWs ; laws are nothing' 
wlthbcit s^ctiofis. If the penalty atMched tathe kw 
of God, be foulkidd m eqtiity, and were it otherwise, 
hdw coifld He* have annex^ it i ' doe» not the same 
pfindple wlwth led hita to pro^se it, constrain him to 
flMitttafa it .^ Suppose a governor j when he estabBsiies 
aliew system of legislMtion, were to issue a procbmadoa, . 
tfcit yrhdbwr transgressed it shoiddbe pardoned upon?) 
Ubivpentance and reforniatk>n ; ' would not dUs diKornv 
tilt hw of all' Its terrMS, aikd rather encourage than 
Mpress iiii viofaliofi ai^hf U the gospel such m enei* 
mf to the law f ' ^ Do we by faith make void the bw^ 
^.Tta, we iaialbWi the kw/^ We dk> not however 
oirtfais subject, go^ a the ^lengths towhidr socnesri'* 
vunce. 1>tfte.wOuld not ^ftmft the Hi4y One of bra- 
^d i^ or sArm that He tieuU not have pardoned sm 
wMioor* an Aodement Let WFTOmember the Su^ 
fH'ia^ Msjestf is aceountsMe to none ; let us not ttf 
i^flit'«W bMH^ of '^A^dlute prerogative. Our fieU 

* >■ 



p(]f^sibilit)r into the wif^i^^of QckI; . It is suffidelit i^-. 
us ,(0 kiiQW tl£^t uk thkynj Ood, 4iiQse' xo^^xify l^y 
{>er£^tioiis, aD4. tliat to us Yio, other :^y ^iqpf^r%. |p>* ' 
whjch we could, bare jukI ati .e<p^ cQls^y <i^ th^ ^. - 
viijie attributes. Ju9ti<Qe CQuM. hsi?t Mizq4 vtlie tim]GK 
gresspr ; ot inercy. cjould.Bave spared hioi ; but in t}ie>-' 
Case before iis, b<ith justice and mercy; are blepded)^' 
th^ir exeixise ; we see the one in requiring this mecK- 
ation, the , other ii} providing[ it. The har ^ secured^ 
and the offender too. ^ Sin is cbn^e^e^ ;^d .t|he^ pin- 
ner pardoned ; and God peither. beholds the, iniquity^ . 
or the mbery of man. .Tfaiese we conceive to be a few - 
6£ the reasons why *' it became Him, for whom are all . 
*^ things, and t^y whom are all thing^, in bringing tna- 
^ ny sons unto^lory^ to inal^e the Captaja.ojf their ^al- 
^* Vation perfect through sufferings/* ^ . ^ 
• We close the subject widi twa reflection;; 

^. Erst, Let not christians think it ** strange^ if th^y 
should t}e called to suffer. Let theni learn, ^^hotl'^o 
« be abased,'* as ^elj as " Ti,ow, to abound :" let theipi 
determine to pass '^ through evil report,*' as well ^ 
^ good laeport :*' and be willing to deny themseWe$. 
A!ad take up their eross,^ and follow bim^. * The gospe) 
does not deceive )xs : it informs us only of one way, ty 
\vhich we can reach the crown ; in this we see all our , 
brethren walkings and our elder brother going before 
them i but w^ are lookitag £(>r a smoother passage, ; we 
would be children, and. uot chastised : goldf,. an4 ^^ 
tried v,soldiers, and not ^ endure hardness i^ christians, 
aud hot like Christy iUre the meiabers %o lave 119 

Sua. vn/) 0f Savipwr NKOimy. Ufs 

saipppatby with, tlu^ sufemg iiaad T Aw you not; chok 
sen to '* be conformed to his image T Observe his 
lilxoess i see his aoorowftdi features ; how ^^ his visage 
^^ is marred more than any man'Ss. and his form than 
^ the sons of men.*' Can you resemble him^ and not 
iga0er ? Is k not an honour to have fellowship with hinii 
in his sufferings ? Would you wish for the friendshi]^ 
of that world, whose malice he continually bore f 
Would you only have ease, where he only had trou* 
hie ? or nothing but honour, where he had nothing but 
disgrace f Would jicm reign with him, and not su&r 
with him ? Can the common soldier complain^ whea 
he sees th^ commander enduring the same privations 
with himself? ^^The disciple is not above his masterj^ 
^ nor the servant above his lord : it is enough for the 
^ disd]^e that he be as his master, and the stervant as 
^ his lord." But, ah ! wh^it are your suffering^, com** 
pared with. His ? Are you oppressed I look before you» 
and see him carrying a cross infinitely heavier ; carry- 
ing it for you} carrying it without a groan-— Oh t 
^consider Him that endureth such contradidion of 
^ sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied spd £unt 
** in yoiur minds/* 

Secondly, If the Sufferings of Christ were so va- 
riously useful and necessary, and of such high impor- 
tance in the view of Godf can ministers dwell too 
much upon them in their preaching? Can christians 
estimate them too highly, or noake too much of them 
in their meditations, and in the exercises of their faith 
and of their devotion ? And" if an ordinance be estate 

'fished in the church as a memorial of his suflEbrings, 



The Sufferings tf^ &c. 


sfiould they not thankfully embrace every opportunity 
df attending it ? 

Sudi, christiai^, is the insdtutidn of the Lord's Sup. 
per, of \(rhich you are gbing to partake ; approach, 
and in lively memorials behcdd '^ Jestis Christ evident- 
*My set forth, crucified among you.*^ **For as oft 
«< as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew 
** forth the Lord's death till he shall come/V Draw 
hear, and looking on Him who was pierced by you 
Ind for you, mourn and rejoice. Draw near, and ex- 
ercise faith, aided even. by die medium of sense ; and 
of the best Objedl, take the best view it is in your pow- 
er to enjoy ; tin ^ you shall see Him as he is,'' and 
joining a nobler assembly, shall sing the song which 
you are loving and learning now, •*• unto Him that lov- 
^ ed us, and washed us from our sins in his own bloody 
and hath made us kings and priests unto God and 
his Father, be glory and dominion for ever and eV'^ 
•* er/' Amen. 






Job zx:dv. SS. 

.« < 
SsOUiJ) IT BE ACCORMVG tfb f'^r ilT/A^. 

^^ OH 1 ^^^ I y^^^ made judge in th«i 
^ land J that every man which hath any suit, or cause^ 
^' might come unto me, and I would do him justice." 
$\u:h was the language of Absalom, when labouring to 
promote and to justify a mea3ure, the design of which 
was to exclude David^from the throne» and to estabr 
Hsh a usurper. It is the pommon eloquence of fzi&ion, 
wluch always j^nows how much easier it is to censure 
than to reform \ which loves to talk of the facility of 
government^ and to hide the difficulties ; which is sure 
to fix on evils which are o£ten unavoidable, and to dis- 
regard advantages, In the procuring of which hujnan 
prudence h^s some share ; and which is ever making 
comparisons between long estabfished institutions, the 
sober value of which cannot strike with the freshness of 
novelty, and the charming Scenes to be foupd in th^ 
paradise of specu^tion. 

Who is not ready to condemn Absalom f — " Younjf 
man, while the king is employed in the c^re^ and, 
pexplexities of empire, it is an easy thing fpr yoy tQ 




1« TbeCmiimm&m {^Sxa. vnu 

<< ik in ^pAty and dfA ioffi^ your roBaAiona ^ai 
our prooEibes. Are you aot a ml^^? Are yon 
ot a son? Are yon n^t 19 eaqperieiice» and every 

^ oilier qwdification, ii^erior to your &ther, and yow 

I gofurcher; if a person were to rase up in dns a»« 
Mmbly, and endeatoar to draw away diedples after 
Mni; if holding the lameliiigiiage with regard t^G^ 
which Absalom used with renid to Davids he should 






^'tbuigB shoold not be as they now aae : the ways o 
^ the IfOrd are not equal: the Almighty permrts judg« 
^xinent ;*^ I am. pursuaded you would be ready to drrre 
lum £rom the imnduary, and to 8t(»e him with stones^ 
«9ytng^ ^ thou duld of the devfl, thou enemy of aB 
^hteousness^ when wilt thou ^ease to parvot the 
^ Lght ways of Godi^ Butwhatt myhearers, if thnm 
should be found here of mch a descr^tion^ not one 
charader only, but many ; what, if in condenmiiig 
this supposed blasphemer, you have prooouooed judg* 
ment (Ml yourselves ? Why, the saitiment in variouf 
degrees prevails in all mankind. If they do not avow 
it, they indulge k^ if they do not express it in words, 
it is to be derived by lair, inference from their addons. 
For ar^ they not displeased with the divine proceed- 
ings ? Do tbey not inuroMia at those events, which un^ 
der bis adminiatratton are perpetually occurring? Are 
they not always suggesting arrangeihents sriiioh they 
deem preferable to tho$e which thp Goveriior of the 
wodd has jdanned ? This ^ the subjed which is to en- 
gage your attendon this naorning $ and it is a subje^ 
of superior importance, and will be found to possess a 


ematimMng kdktmM omt ymat datf aul jtm Im^ 

fMtiMf* Obserpi^ tbe tHftdB wUds we bwe read ai 
tlM» ftuii^tfkin of the eoMon^ ^ Sboiild it he accoidi 
*^4fig td tky miticfrF' The ^akdr is Bi]» ; a petii 
icnage wkkk tke ncfedl hiitorian introduces in a itMUii. 
Mt flo' extraordiBary^ that cMaflienttimai knmir not 
i»faat to OMike of Urn. fette ImM taken him fiit tk« 
Saa pf God > odie^i for a finsphflt } dl for a wise and 
jgood nan. Tke mt^nipc^ the <|tttation it obvious; 
^ abaft the Snprame IMug do iMtkiag witltont tbf 
^eoMent? jSkoaU Ht assk cnnsel of tkeef Ong^t 
He to ngahte kk dj^wntattcw aiOiarcKjBg to i^ 
mefw^ and <feairea f Sfcoidd it be aecosdypg ta Af 
ndaA 7^ He doea not spcdtff any paptlcntar #nie, 
^rfdck iMltos the tfiquky tkemoK atrSdng and uaa^ 
and jiiirifia^ an aippKc^tio^ l&e moat ^rneral and 

comprebeplMr EUhts 1&« the Otker friemteof Job, 
saad GRMmbin^ harsb afid improper^; bet wken lai 
aakad^ «<4heiild it U aoprdbig ta tby niind?'' Je6 
shookt imttndjr kanre answered, 106; And imk yovr 
pnacker M addreat tbe iame question iiMdfvidiutfy tif 
tkif ui mtA % yon sboidd ajl^impediaiely anwer, No; 
To bring yon to thib ten^r, we shai tthrge on tlie 
desire of kavfng tihings «* acsconitng to our mind;'' t 
Aa xxMaiaoii^ IL 4s uHnsAsei^ABi^a. HL . As caiM^ 
m^^ >W^ Aa OAironROiTBi. V. Aft im^SiACTuiAMiJgi 
«*^Con^ter wiiat' { any^ ^d tbe Load give yoaun<» 

L lb bttv* things «f according t^ pur mind^ i* 
a v«ry commoiv wjih. Man ie nahinifly Sell^waied. 
The df^positton Ts^fcBx* very early h^tit' dbildreir. 

188 TAe CondemtMioH TSbii. vni% 

All stn is a contention against the wiH ctf God $ it be» 
gan in paradise. . . Adam disobeyed the prohibition to 
*^ touch of the tree of knowledge of good and. evil,'* 
and all his posterity have unhappily followed iiis ex« 
ample. What God forbids, we desire and pursue; 
what He ei^ins, we dislike and oppose. Tea, ^* the 
? carnal mind is entnity against God ; it is not subject- 
*f to the law of God, neither indeed can be.'' 

- Enter the world of grace. Behold the revelation 
which God has given us. One deems it unnecessary ; 
for a second it is too sim{de ; for a third it is too 
ttij^sterious. See Jesus Christ crucified. He is ^ tB 
^ the Jews a stumbling-block, and to the Greeks 
^' foolishness." Grod has ^^ set" his ^ King upon his 
'*holy hill of Zion," and has sworn ^^ that to him 
*' every knee shall bow,' and every tongue confess ;*' 
thelangiiage of those who hear this determinittion is« 
^ we wUl not have this man to reign over us.'' 
When we begin to think of returning to God, it is 
not by the way which ^* He has consecrated for us," 
but by a way of our own devising. We labour, not 
despairing of our own strength^ while. prophets and 
apostles teach us' to implore help, and to place all our 
dependence on Him, whose ** grace" alone ^ is 
'* sufficient for" us. We seek to be justified by our. 
own works, while the go^>el assures us we must be 
justified by ^* the faith of Christ f and many a surly 
Naaman exclaims, ^* Are not Abana and Pharpar; 
f **rivers of Damascus, better than all the ^waters , of 
^ Israel ? may I not wash in them, and be clean ? Sq 
^^ he turned, and went away in a rage." And the 
same is to b Aeen in the world of Providence. Who 

Sra. viil] ^ ^ SelfWiB. 159 

b ^* content with such things as'' he has ? Who does 
aot covet what is denied him ? Who does not envy the 
superior condition of his neighbour? Who does not 
long to be at his own disposal? If he draw off his 
eyes from others, and look inwardly, every man will 
find ^*a pope in his own bosom;" be would hav« 
every thing according lo Us own Q»nd > he would have 
his own mind the measure, both of all he does to^ 
wards God, and of all God does towards him* 

Acknowled^d— But is not tlua disposition crushed 
in conversion, and are not the Lord's '^ people made 
^ willing in the day of his power ?^' See Saul of Tar* 
sus on his knees; ^^ behold he jHrayeth"-— ^ Lord, 
^^what wilt thou have me to do?" David wraps 
himself up ii^ the stillness q£ patience and submission : 
^ I was dumb, I opened n^t my mouth, because thou 
^ ^dst it.'* There stands old £K ; he has received the 
most distressing intelligence, and piously exclaims ^^ it 
^ is the Lord, let Him do what seemelh him good/' 
A gracious woman in deep afflietion was once heard to 
say, ^'1 mourn, but I do not nmrmur." We have r^d 
of one, who, when informed that her two sons, her 
only children, were drowned, said in all the majesty 
of grief, and with an heavenly composure, ^ I see God 
'^ is resolved to have all my heart, and I am resolved. 
"He SHALL have it." Ah! here you behold the 
S2unts in their choicest moments, and in th^ir best 
frames ; for their sanftification. is imperfeft in all its 
parts ; too much of this self-will remains even in them ; 
they are most gratified when they find the divine pro- 
ceedings falling into the diredion which they had pre* 
scnbed ; they are too much elated when their schemes 


leo Tie i^^i^ttmatkn IBn^ rm. 

tM(0M4 md too ffttcb dfs nm d wiwa Ui««r kofm 
9K^£fvm^^ Tli«f ^oMaedlomtbQwiQpf Go4|» 
wd we ara fiir from nyiiig» that tbqr would inm 
Mtliwg dQSe 4c«fnr4^ to «i$ miqd ; Jpm tbry aw 
Bftm w4ioitkw tp )i»iireta»iMwy tblngidOM 3M»wtii|ip 

B. This deAct k tiNABASoMAftLS. And k ^vdll c^MOjr 
^ipear}fgr wearewliotly'iiifqttflilfiedtogoreniy wUk 
God b wwy way ade^ate to tike work in w^h Ha 
b Mgaged ; and tkerofart nothing can bciixMre ahsozd 
4ban to IsibouFto ^Boplease Ifimt and wb^titul^a ennelvag 
a9 thu croatoia of di^^y, t^ regulators of ei/^nts. 
for^ to throw open (his tkoH^^t-^Hit power k al- 
m^^lty} his resources an bimidleas } ^^hid oafdtr- 
^ itaadiog is infimte.'^ He seea aU thsngi i« their origUi» 
in their oDnQections, in"* their defiendeiidesy in their to- 
•note eftets ; He is ^ wonderful in coiins€^> and ex^ 
^ celient in working/' This is the Being you widi 
to set aside ; and who 13 to be his successor in empivi ? 
T0Q9 a worm of the earth ; you^ whose ^^ feiuubtiQa 
^ is in the dust }*' you, who are ^ crushed befiftre the 
^aioth;** you, who are of ^yecAerday, and know 
^ nothing }" you* who ^ know not what a d^y aaary 
^ bring forth." 

Placed in ain obscure corner of the universe, where 
only a small proportion of God's works passes under 
hb review ; fixed in a vsdley,^ whose surrouncfing hifls 
intercept his prospects ; a prisoner ^ven there, looking 
<XQly through grates and bars } his very dungeon en^ 
Tebped in mists and fogs ; his eyes also dim by reason 
Af weakness ; suchis man ! and this ^ vain man would 


^be ww^'' tUftHs tke owdidat^ who- doems iiinfiBilf 
t}iyr]iia^p0ifiO84'<^9pable of goveraidg, aod iMbfaes to 

ftff brethren, harc you not often fo^nd y6nrsel^s 
tnistakesi, where 701k deiiMd ydiirfielves most mare I 
Have 70U not frequently erred in judging yeutstfvef ; 
md getierally «rred in fudging others \ ijlo you not 
tiame those m^d condenm any of yoor ptqceedings 
liefbre tliey undeI9tl^|d then^, espedatty when the ofejedts; 
00 which th^y dedde fall not within the sphere of thdr 
^Imowledge or observation? What ^if^u^ you think 
•of a subfeA, who scarcely competent to guide the petty 
(onceroa of his own househc^, would niA forth tq 
assume the diredibn of the afEiirs of an enlarge^* em- 
pire, after censuring measurea which he does not com- 
^prehend, cannot comprehend ; whqse labyrinths he 
cannot trace, whose extensive bearings he cannot Teach, 
whose distant consequences he iai>nQt calculate? All 
(his jUnagery is weak when applied .tqif* the n^an whp 
^ striveth with his M^ker»'' . and ^^ a^fesi what dost 
^* Thou ?* For whatever differences subsist between mtfh 
and man^ all are partakers of the same nature, and all 
f^e liable to err ; but ^^ in God there is nq darkness at 
«« alL** ** Is there unrighteousness with God ? C5o4 
^* fprbid ; how then could God judge the worlds ?*5- 

It we know not the peculiarities of the cUs^^, hpw 
qaisi we judge properly of the remedy which the 
physician prescribes? If we know not the station 
Ifhich the. SOI) i^, deytine4 to ckxupy, how can we ju^e 
pf the wisdQn| ^f the &ther in the education he is g^v* 
ing him ? And how c^ we 4ecide on the means w^ph 

|he $upre]i)e ISeing employs, while we are ignorant 

W . / 







Tbt Condemnation 

«£ Uie reasons wlilch move him^ and the plism wliich hd^ 
bc^ m view?. A providence occurs; it strikes w ; 
we end^VQur to. ezpUin ir ; but are we certain that 
^ hft'Re seized th^ true m^s^iing? Perhaps mJaaX we 
taJj^eas/sm end, nc^ay be only the way^ what we take 
4%^ the whole, may be oifly a part; what we deprecate 
tnayjbe a blessing, and what ^e implore may be a 
cuisse^; what appears conAision may be the tendencies 
of order ; and what looks like the disaster of. Provii^i 
oencei, may be the preparations of its triumph. ^ Canst 
'*thpu by searching find out God? canst thou find 
^ out the Ahnigbcy unto perfedion ?" ^^ Such knowK 
*^ edge is too wonderful for** us.}» ** it is high^'' we 
<* cannot attun unto it." ^'^ O the depths of the riches 
, ^^ both of the wisdom and knowledge of God ! how 
^^ unsearchable are his jjudgments, and his waysr are past 
** finding out I For who hath l^own the mind of the 
^^ Lord, or who hath been his counsellor ?'* Do not 
rnisun<£erst2md the inference we would draw froni these 
l^remises i there is nothing shameful in the Umitation 
pt our powers, nor shoul^ we be miserable because we 
possess only a degree of intelligence ; but let us not 
Ibrget our ignorance s ^t us not *^ darken counsel by 
^^ords. without knowledj^e; ;** let ui not summon to 
^lif tribunal *^the only wise God,** and condemn all 
that* accords not With our contraded notions. Before 
we begin to reform, let us be satisfied an amendment 
is necessary, and before we censure, let us understand. 

' IIL'Tbe dedrp of having dungs ^ according to our 
*tnin#*'« ctaiiiifihL. . ^The smurces are bad^r ^^Men 
^db ficft gather iirspes 'of thorns, or figs of thifltles.^ 


It aigMes fingratitiide j it is infimte ccMEidesceiutcm ui 
sOpd to be ^^ mindfiil of us f to' be wfHiDg to manage 
our concerns, and to dlpw us to cast a0 oUr csrf 
upon him, with an assurance ^^ that he careth for us/' 
and will make *^aU things to Work tQ|^tJie^ for oiir 
*f good.'' For adl tjiis he i^^ly deserves c^ thankA^I 
*ad^nowiedgments ; and we insult him with murmur^^ 
complaints ! What can be -more' yile, than for a poor 
dependent creature, who holds his very being by the* 
good pleasure of his Maker, and possessies nothing un? 
derived from the bounty of his beneiador, to overlook 
so many expressions of his goodness, becsCnsife \it comr 
{dies not with eimry fond desire ! What can bie basbr 
than our repistng, when tiie very same kindness vrl6th, 
rVrges Providence to give, determines it also to reftisTe ! 

it springs from discontent j it shews that we are dis- 
]>leased with his deafings ; for if we were not dissatif & 
ed, why do we desire a change ? This was the sin of 
the Israelites iq wishing a ktiig. It did not consist in 
desiring a monarchy, they would have sinned equally 
in demanding jtny other form ^government. But 
they wexe under the immediate empire of *God, aiid 
He had not pleased them ; they w&uld set him right ; 
they " charged Him foolishly ;'* they would be like the 
^* r€55t of the nations,** when it was his pleasure tfcat 
(hey should be a peculiar people ; ^ the people shaN 
'^ dweH alone, and shall not be reckoned among the na- 
"tions/* ' ' ' ' • V 

It betrays earthly-mindedness ) the soul feels It when 
A:IeaVing to the dust.* Accordmg to our 'attach- 
ments, wtlt be| all throtigh life, our affi£tiois ttad our 
perplesiti^. When y^u fipd yoanefare^ in pro9^rA 



The ^ondmnaiion 

t&tlU vllft ' 

Qtis -Scircumstinces, sufrcmnded wlllf afluenoe shid 
friends, enjdying health and peace^ the providence of' 
God isp not only agreeable but ifHelKglblew We nev^f 
hear you excliditi, ad you ^ jdlti kouie to howe» and/ 
^ &dd field to fitid,** CMi ! hdVr mysterious the desfiiigft 
of (^od ire! B6t ^en the scene Is re^ctsed ;i.iheD^ 
itot onty hard thoughts of Ood are entertained^ butall * 
is embarrasBintot ; ^'fak ^k^Is in the »^ and his path 
^^ in the d^p Witers, and his footsteps are luM: loiDwiu*^ 
What, iOfiBWft dod still cominue togoven i Has he 
Im wisdom in 1 d(Mdy daiy tlitn ia a fine one ? Why 
does every di^nsation erf Providence become iatriv 
tete as soon as it aftds fou ? Are yuii «o inaocent ak 
'to mder it doubtfU, whether you-cso be lawfaEy 
ttechted i .Are you srudi. attentive scholars, as to ren^ 
tier a stroke of the rod a mystery? Is God in blessing 
his people, <56nfined to one cbssc^ means only ? Do not 
^ these Itgjbt afflidions, which are but ioc a moment^ 
work out for you a far more exceecfing atad eternal 
^ght of glory T' So itiuch more attached are w« 
to our fleshly interests, than to our sfHritual concerns^ 
so luucb siiore are we licenced by things seea an4 
^^ temporal, 'than by^(;iM3se things which are unseen an4 
" eternal." 

It is th6 produce of impatience; this will s(x£Fer no 
delay, this can bear no denial, this strug^es to be free 
from all controul, and cries ^Met us break** his 
^* bands asunder, and cast away" these ^ cords from us,*^ 

. It is the oSiprii^ of ^ride and independence ; the 
cursed disposition which expelled angels from heav«|i^ 
and Adam from paradise* In a word, it is a pre- 
^n^tuous invasion of the authority and prerogative 




i • 

xAQiodu Vkmr ^tm b the fooMooUaot diethroM f 
ffXLUA^ fbttov^, nat to lea4 $ to obty, not to dictate^ 
Suppose a stranger^ c^ a neighbour, sluMgdd.oDmoiiH 
to your fiuAily^ and begiti w n^w [daco tlie otaaiDCHtt 
and Mmsib of your rooim^ to order your chOdreo, to 
Qomraand your t^rraiits^ ^ rule your house^ . yoii 
v»^oiild blatti^ him; And on what jpritidple f Tfii^ b 
At>t his ofice ; this b not Ms.protiiice ; he ie an iiiWk^ 

-der. Afaintain your distance here^ st^d ^ ttot e^ 
iroaefa on the divine riglhts. Too did not jMate tlM 
universe, it does not dependbn your caM \ the world 
h not youm^ not* the fellneirt ilieiedf^ nor erea your- 
^ve$ $ YE aite 6<ft your oWn ; but tih^e<tt One co 
«rhom the #iiole fetfongs; <« he is Lord of siL'' God 
cannot havi An ^isal, and he will not have a rivak 
A prittte tnay be pleased, if his' subjects endea^oof to 
Imitate him ^ hk merqr, his gocxlness, his truth, <yr in 
any of thoipe vilrt\iei which ar^ cointtiM to persons An 
aU dtoations ; heMiy they hohour hfiti, l>ilt if t^ey ini* 
itiite Mm ih his rtigalb, in thde atiribnttt knd •acSiokil; 
whidi are pec^ar tb liiiti ad a kiftg $ i^ 1^ hkn they 
Inspire to wear a crown, to enact krws, to dedare peace 

^ and Witr, to livy coiltribiitioM, to new model tiie stale^ 
they are guilty of high treason* 

IV. The desire of having tMngs "* according tb Mur 
^mind,^ b t)AKo]Bkous. If it were accomplidhfed, 
^I parties would suflfer; God, o\ir leflow-creattires, 
and outsdves. 

Rrst, iTie hOtiour d teod would sutffer. Nothing 
Vow occurs by chance ; every thing falls under the 
teguhticms of divine Ft-ovidence, and as a&irs arei^ow 

Its Tbi/^mUmmtUn QSm^t vsfe 

mtnaged, Aejr ^ subsenre the poippae of Heaooeiiy 
they all advance the glory of God ; even ^* the \vrat)i 
<< of man praises Him, and the remsunder of it he rer 
? strains.'' If you had the diction of the whole, 
would this be tlie sure result ? Would von make the 
honour of God invajiably your guide ? ^ould you; 
bend ev^ry claim and eyery occurrence to .this sublime 
end ? Tou may imagine you would 4 and opthing i$ 
more commou th;^ to hear people making cosdy 
pronm^Sy the e^ecujdop of i^rhich .only r^mre$ ^arg« 
ed opportunities apd capacities ; hgat ^ the Jieart i^ 
^ deceitful aboye all things f zxm^ no man has reason 
to conclude- that he woijAd glQiify God with greater 
powers, .who does, not employ for him the abilitief 
which he alregdy possesses. "Vfe may ;see this' exem- 
fdified with regard to |nroperty. Ma^y professors of 
reli^Qn wbo^ wealth hath .increased, do less in propor* 
tion, and I feju: in soffi^ cs^es less in &ct^ iox the qiuse 
of God, thai^ ^hUe in fDore Uniited circumstance$j and 
when their prospects were pot flattering enough t9 
render jit wqr^h iivhile for them p^ jl^come covetpus. 

Secondly, The welfare, of qur fellow creature^ 
would suffer. The principle of selfishness is comnion. 
to depraved nature ; for who loyes his neighbour m 
himself? '^^lb^^ in fqsming h|s |>la9$, would cpnsf^^ 
the conveniences ^iid ^ii^tagj^ pf others, as well. as. 
his own ? The traveller would h^ve the weather to ap«t 
commodate his journey, regardless of .the parche4 
i^eld^'of the husbandman. TH^ ?nemy would be dis- 
fl|qpoi|ite4.and crushed \ that fayourite would be ipdylg? 
ed toruiuy selfish individuaUty would every where pre* 
dominate, and puJbKc utility would be sacrificed on tl^e 
9lt9r of private interest. 

To' come n6aKr;' your own fiappinm^ woulc^ 
t'hirdly, suffer ; and you would pr6ve the greatest en-* 
emies to yourselves. Tou would be too eager to 
choose well ; ^you would not have firmness to refuse a 
present gratification for the sake of a future good^ 
Tou would be too carnal to^ choose well: nature 
would speak before^grace } ^ the pleasing would be pre« 
£erred to the profitable \ imagpuiary wants would be 
more numerous than real ones. The Israelites were 
chn^orous lor ^ flesh ;^^ but it was not to relieve their 
seGessitieSf^*^ they asked meat for their lusts }'' and 
^ he gave them Uieir hearths desire, but sent leanness 
^ into their souls.^' As in nature the most beautiful 
plants are not always the most wholesome or innocent^ 
so it is in human life } a thing is not beneficial because 
it is gratifying, or good because our. passions and appe- 
tites may pmx)nounce it so. *'And Lot lifted up his 
^ eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was 
^ well watered every, where. Then Lot chose him all 
^' the plain of Jordan."^ It was a sensual choice ;. faith 
had no influence in this determination ; it was made 
regardless of the welfare of his soul, the salvation of 
his family, and the honour of religion^ And in what 
embarrassments, dangers, and calamities, did this pref- 
erence involve him ? Tlumext time we hear of him, 
he is takeia captive by the five kings ; then *^ his righ- 
•^ teous soul is vexed daily by the fflthy conversation of 
•* the** ungodly ; then he is burned out with the losa 
of all )iii'siibstance ; some of his relations perish in the 
overthrow ; his wife, attached to the place, looks 
back, and beco'ilite a pHlar of salt ; his two dau^ters,^ 
flbde shim^ess'b]^ tl^ itaaimen of the inhabitants, reu- 


1C8 The Ctvdimifatun fau. ioh. 

brought ^^ down with sorrow to the grairf.'' i 

Jn a Wore)) you would be (00 ignorant to choose 
.w^lU Did you ever observe the question of the inspi« 
red preacher ? *^ Who knoweth what is good for mail 
^ in this life ; all the days of this vain life, winch 1^ 
^ spendeth as a shadow ?' The answer is, Jf^o on6 
knows. l40ok around you, and you wfll see men ea« 
ger to change their conditions, but provii^ by their 
behaviour in the new stations they occupy, that they 
are no nearer satisfaction than before. They rasli 
forth assured of finding a paradise, but thorns zxki bri- 
ars soon convince them that they are entangled in a 
wilderness. T^e man of business, and the man o£ 
leisure^ envy each other j they exchange, and go on 
complaining.^ The poor imagine that wealth would 
free them. from care; they obtain it, but ^< in the full«» 
^ ness of their sufllciency they are in straits." The 
retired long for stations of eminence, but beside the 
trouble and danger of dimbing the steep ascent of 
honour, they are cqmpelled to leave their enjoymenta 
in the vale below : often from the brow of the hill sur« 
veying then^ i often desiring thepi, but they cannot get 
down again. 

In order to determiqe what w^l promote our happir 
pess, it is necessary for us to Ipnow the things themselve^t 
from among which we s^e to mal^ our choice ( how 
far it is in their power to*.yiel4 pleasure ; whether thdbr 

■ _ 

patural tendency may not be coutttera^d } whitt are 
their ordinary efie^. Nor b it less needfol to under«> 
stand ourselves ; for a man mu^t be adapted to his <xMb>- 
ditioUi or be wiU never be ha|>py in it > that whldi iuita 

Sea. vinj ^f SelfWitt. 16$ 

another; may not suit me j what may wear easy on 
him, may be an incumbrance to me. Now to know 
whether a condition would accord with us, and be 
ta our advantage, we must know ourselves better 
diaa we do ; our strength and our weakness ; our nat- 
ural peculiarities, and our acquired propensities j our 
int^e^al abifities, and our moral qualifications, And 
here another diQeulty occurs. It is impossible for us 
to judge of ourselves in untried connediohs and situa- 
dons ; and the reason is obvious, We go forward to 
these scenes in imagination only, with our present 
sentimeqts and inclinations, not remembering that our 
charafters are formed and unfolded by circumstances ; 
Aat we change with events ; that the fridion of new 
objeds elicits new feelings, quickens dormant guilt, and 
calls forth improbable corruption. The water is dear 
tin the muddy fediment is diilurbed. In private life Ha-» 
eael abhorred the thought of inhumanity. When the 
man of Qod viewed him with tears, and predi^ed the 
druelties of his future reign, he was filled with horrort 
and exclaimed, ^' Is thy feryant ^ 4og, ths^t be fhould 
<• do this thing V* But he went forward, arrived at the 
foot of the throne, exchanged the man for the tyrant, 
and became the monfter which h^ };|iad execrated. 

We are not only liable to err on the fide of our 
hopes, but alfo of our fears. What in diftant prospe^ 
filled us with anxiety and dread, as, it approached 
more near was found the beginning of a tr^n of friends 
and bkflings, all haftening ^long to do us good. Had 
Jofeph remained under the wing of his fon^ father, he 
would have lived and ^ed an infignificant individual } 
liiit from the pit and the prifon he fteps up into the 

170 . The Condemnation £S£R« viif» 

fecond chariot in the Idngdom, and becomes the fa- 
viour of furrounding countries. Ah ! if things had 
been arranged according to your mind, what afflidions^ 
would fome of you have efcaped, and what benefits 
would you have loft t For " though no chafiening for 
** the~prefent feemeth to be joyous but grievous, nev- 
** erthelefs afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruits of 
^ righteoufnefs to them that are exercifed thereby." 
And ihould we not principally value that which is 
MORALLY good for US ; that which influences and fe» 
cures our eternal welfare ; that by which the lafety of 
the foul is leaft endangered, and the £ui£dfication of the 
foul is moft promoted ? Upon this principle I am per- 
fuaded many of you are ready ta add your t«ftimony to 
the confefEons of former fufierers, and to fay, ^^ it is 
" good for me that I have been afflifted/' *' Difeafe," 
fays one, ^^ commiffioned from above,* fought me out, 
^^ found me in a crowds detached me from the multi* 
^^ tude, led me into a chamber of folitude, firetched 
** me upon a bed of languifhing, and drew up eternity 
** clofe to my view ; I never prayed before," Says 
another, ** my life was bound up in a beloved relation } 
•* I faw my gourd fmitten , and beginning to wither } 
** I trembled ; I watched the procefs of a danger which 
*• doomed all my happinefs to the grave ; in that mo* 
** ment of bereavement, the world which had enamour* 
ed was deprived of all its attraftions ; I broke from 
the arms of fympathizing friends, faying. Where is 
*' God my Maker, that ^veth songs in the night ? I en* 
" tered my clofet, and faid. Now, Lord, what wait I for ? 
*' my hope is in thee.** " Into what miferies,'* fays a 
third, " fhould I have Men, if He had given me up 

$2R. vui.] . ^ Se^Wili: ^^'^^ 171 

*^ in fuch Jin enterprife to my own counfd ! I (hould 
^have advanced till I had fallen from a dangerous 
^ precipice, if He had not hedged up my way with 
^ thorns ; at firft I murmured at the check, but when 
^^ I lodked over, alnd £iw the abyfs, I kneeled and faid, 
**Lord, I am thine; fave me in every future periL** 
Thus by experience He has been convincing you, that 
^^ the way of man is not in himfdf," and that ^^it is 
V not in man that walketh to dired his fleps ;'' and 
luving feen the hazards to which you will be expofed 
in managing for yourfelves, you are now on your knees 
faying, ^^He fhall choofe our inheritance for us/'' 
'' Surely I have behaved and quieted myfdf as a child 
'^ that is weaned from his mother ; my foul is even as 
<< a weaned child." 

We have only one more view to take of the fubjeA. 
The defire of having things ** according to our mind'' is, 

V, Impracticable. Obferve only two things. 
Pirst, the deHres of mankind in ten thouiand inftances 
arc oppofite to eacli other ; hence they cannot be all 
accompliihed. Secondly, the plan of divine govern- 
ment is already fixed ; the machine is in motion ; it is 
rolling by, and we can neither arreft its progreis, or 
^ve it a new dire6don» ^^ He is in one mind, and who 
^ can turn Him ? and what his foul defireth, even that 
He doeth ; for He performeth the thing that is ap- 
pointed for me, and many fuch things are with him." 
«< Our God is in the heavens ; he hath done whatsoever 
« he pleafed/* " Declaring the end from beginning, and 
^^ from ancient times the things that are not yet done, 
frying, my " counfel fhall ftand, and I will do all my pleat 


179 the CandefnmiM (^n. vkl 

*< ure.*^ fioia usd^ess therefore is ybur ttsiety i ^ vnAdk 
^ of you by Caking thought cati add c^e cubit to faU 
^< stature P' You may repine ( but you fret and rage' 
in vain. God iinll not yield up the reins *into youf 
bands. ^^ He teareth himself in his anger : sbaU the 
^^ earth be fotsaken for thee? and shall the rock be 
removed out of his place ?*' ^ Should it be according 
to thy mind ? He will recompense it, whether thou 
^^ refuse^ tit whether thou choose/' Having est^blish^ 
ed a general principle, it will be necessary to make^ 
ttch an application as will preclude the abuse of it, and 
render it useful to promote iresignadon, to encourage 
Pur faith, and to animate our hoper 

First, Let not the conscientiops christian suppose hiita* 
sdf guilty of the disposition we censure, when he only 
indulges allowed desir^« Tou may alk of God any 
^mporal blessing conditionally, and with submission to 
the pleasure of the Almighty. Are you in trouble ? af» 
li£Uons ^e not Immutable dbpensations ; and yoiii^ 
praying for their remov^ will not be striving with Ptov- 
idence, if you are willing to refer the que uldmately 
to the determination of infinite wisdom and goodness, 
and to acquiesce in the decision. Thus did our Saviour ; 
" Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me ; 
*« nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt." To 
pffer a humble petition differs widely from making a 
demand, or proposing a task. When pur desires are 
tash, unqualified, impetuous, enforcing, they are not on* 
ly offensive to God, but the^ injure the sobl, and they 
injure our cause. If, to use the expression, when we 
insist upon an objed, we are gratified, the indulgence 
is dreadful, it is a a^rse* Thus God punished, tha 

See. vm.^ tfSi^mU. n» 

tiafid impcntuakf of tke Jewt^ ^ Be gaw tlMm a 
^ king in Ids mger^ and teok him away in his wrath/* 
But i£ Ht loves you, in such a case He will be sure to 
deny you ;• he will te^ch you by his refusal, that he haa 
a right to withhold, and that you have no claims upon' 
the Qiver ; he will luring you to supplicate what before 
you seemed to order. He sees that while you are thus 
passionately eager,, be cannot with safety indulge you 
with the object ; you woukL make too much ot it. He is 
a God of judgment, and he waits a coolerand more sober 
fi^ame of mind, when you can receive it properly, an^ 
not be so loitt in the gift^ as to disregard the Givers 
The best way for a christian to gain any temporal good^ 
b ta seek after a holy indifference ; the moment it 
QMses to be dangerous. He. will be ready to gratify 
you» for '^ He taketh pleasure in the prosp^ity of hie 
^ servants/' 


Secondly, Hie subject preaches submission. It.poww 
eiiutty ufges you to leave yourselves to the disposal of 
diving Providence; to lie as clay in the hands of the 
potter, willing to receive any shape he chooses to give 
you, or to take any impression he is pleased to impose $ 
to keep your eye towards the fiery cloudy pilar, and 
to be ready to move as it moves, turn as it turns, pause 
as it pauses. And is not a)l this implied in your pro- 
feffioU) resolutions, and vows ? Do you not remember 
a time when you gave your God, what you had too 
long withheld from him--«^your heart ? And have you 
not often fiace renewed this engagement ? Are there 
no seasons in your experience, no spots in your walks^ 
made lacred in your recotteaion 1^ frefli dedicitiona 
of yoiirfidves to J£m i When the will is in vnisoo wttK 

174 The Candemnation [^ek« vm, 

ibe will of God, which is perfeft rectitude, it is enno« 
Ued To be like-minded with God, is the highest 
hcHiour we can ever possess ; to furrender ourselves to 
Us pleasure, is the pureft a& of obedience we can ever, 
perform. It is the effence of hdiness, to do what God 
loves, and to love what God does. And as nothing 
can be more pious, fo nothing can be mcnre wife than 
sQch a resignation* If your will con^efponds with 
the will of God, you may be always fure of its accom* 
pliihment : *^ commit thy works unto the Lord, and 
^ thy thoughts (hall be efiabliflied." This b the only 
way to be happy in a miserable world ; on this all your 
sati8fa£)ion d^nds. He knows what things you have 
need of, and what will be for your advantage. Depend 
on Him. Follow Him. Secure His favour ; refer all 
to Him, and leave all with Him. ^^ It is vain for you 
to rife up early, to lit up late,^ to eat the bread of 
ibrrows : for fo he giveth his beloved fleep.'' ^^ Be 
^ careful for nothing ; but in every thing by prayer 
^^ and fupplication with thankfgiving, let your requefls 
^ be made known unto God ; and the peace of God, 
^^ which pafleth all underftanding, ihall keep your 
¥ hearts and minds through Chrift Jefus.'' 

. Thirdly, Let the fubjeA infpire you with consola- 
tion. Make use of the queftion to reprefs all the un«> 
eafinefles which you would otherwife feel when you 
ccmtemplate the diveriity of human affiiirs. Remem* 
ber it when you think of the worid, and your imagim^ 
tion is bulled in fchemes of revolution and reforma- 
tion. Remember it when you think of the fiate of 
the nation, and deplore many things which appear de- 
plorable, and deiire many things which appear dei)r^- 

dfiii. viiiO^ ofSHfWilL Via 

Ue. Refiiemberit when you tbink of the cohdhiorf 
of 'the church ; when you aik, ^ why fiich diverfittet 
^ of opinion among its leaders: i why fiich frequent 
•'.perfecution of its members ? why are they generally 
^ fo poor and afflided ? Why are they all the day long 
^^ plagued^ aiid chafiened every morning j while theif 
^ ungodly neighbours abound in affluence and induU 
^ gence ? Should the finner live within, dotbed in 
^ purple and fine linen, and faring fumptuoufly ev-* 
« ery day ; while the faint lies at his gate, a beggar 
•• full of fores ?" Remember it when you think of the 
drcumflances of the family ; when driven in from a 
troublefome world, and hoping to find an afylum 
there, you are forced as you enter to sigh with David, 
^ my house is not so \nth,God /' or what success in 
business, wiiat servants, what children, what relations V 
Remember it when you think of your refpective cases 
as individuals ; of perplexities and fears ; of losses and 
vexations ; of pain of body ; of imperfections of mind } 
of continuance in this world — ^^ Should it be accord- 
** ing to thy mind," or ** according to the purpose of 
^ Him who worketh all things after the counsel of his 
** own will j'* and " who is wonderful in counsel, and 
** excellent in working ?*' 

Finally, Let all this lead you forward, and draw 
forth your expectation of another, and a more glo- 
rious economy, Beyoild this vale of tears lies a land 
flowing with milk and honey. You are now in a state 
of probation and disdpline ; but trials and corrections 
will not be always necessary. The denials and re- 
straints, to which the heir of glory submits while he is 
a child* cease when he comes of acre. You now walk 

!?• T%^ Caniemmtm^ kc |^iu vui; 

hf faith, and not by fight } soon you wiH waUc by fight ^^ 
and not by .faith; What you know not now, yoa "wSi 
(mow hereafter. Ton wiU then find yoorsdves infi. 
nitely more happy by the divine disposition of all your 
concerns, than you could have been, had yoa always 
tnjoyed your own wishes* When from the top of tte 
holy hill of Zion, you shall look down upon the wind- 
ing path of Providence, by which you ascended, you 
will praise Him for the means as well as for the end, 
admire his vrisdom as well as his Idndness, and say, 
^ He hath done all things well.'' 

Some of your friends and relations are gone before 
you. In his light they see light ; to them the whole 
mystery is now explained.* Blessed spirits, how we 
envy you ! We see Him through a glass darkly ; and 
half our time cannot spy Him at all ; you see Him face 
to face ; you know even as you are known. WeS, 
christians, they are wsuting ^ to receive us into ever- 
^ lasting habitations :'^ we shall soon join them ; we 
shall soon unite in their acknowledgments and adonu 
tions, and this will be our eternal theme ; ^ Marvel* 
« iou» are thy works. Lord Crod almighty ! just an4 
^ right are all thy ways, O thou Kon^of Saints.'* 

« > 


rl* Bjfc" If '.'■■■■ i??»r< 




IVoE tq THEtf rajr jss At base ih Zjq», 

I^Y Brethmi, there is somethidg verf 
ggreeable and desirable in basb. Even external- 
ease is Tillable j and we are ready to pronounce the* 
man happy, whose connedtons and dBEiirs are dl pros* 
perous and peaceful. But i^hat is external ease with- 
Ottt bc^y? Pain will produce anguish, whidi neither 
riches, nor palaces can relieve. An achiag head, a* 
janring tooth, wiU destroy ail the sensations of pleasure 
arittng from worldly things. Enter the house of af- 
t&Sdoni observe thy neighbour; **he is chastened' 
^ with pain also upon his bed, smd the multitude of his 
^ bones with strong pain ; so that his life ahhorreth 
^ bread, and his soul dainty meat ; his flesh is tonsu- 

<* med away that it cannot be seen, and his bones that 
^ were not seen stick out ; yea, his soul draweth near 
«< unto the grave, and his fi£et to the destroyers/' Per* 
haps some of ycta have been in a wnilar condition i 
your ^ soul hath it still in remembrance ;'' you said, 
^ I am made to possess mouthy of vanity, and we«risome 



178 the Secure atarihed. Sjsil.. i±\]| 

<^ nights are appointed to me : ^hen I fie down I say, 
^ when shall I arise; and the night be gone ? I am fuS 
^ of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of day \ 
'' my bed does not c6nifort me, nor my couch ease my 
^ complaint."^ Q how delicious id health after sickness, 
and ease after pain ! But what is bodily eaise without 
mental \ *^ The spirit of a man may sustsdn his ihfirmiv 
•* ty, but a wounded sjpirit who can bear ?* Can a man 
be happy while "corroded witjh care, fretted with envy, 
burning with malice, perjJexed wkh doubts, tormented 
with fears \ Think of a man who carries lodged within 
Um a troubled conscience ; '* he eats aslies liJce breacf, 
^ and mingles his drink with weeping ;*' ^^ his life hangs 
^^m suspense before him, and he hais none assurance 
^ of his life ;*'* ^ he trembles at the shakiikg of a leaf ^* 
'^ terrors take hold on him as watars,, a- tempest $teal« 
^ eth him away in the B^ht V^ ^' he is scaared with 
^ dreams, and terrified with visions.'* O what can be^ 
precious as peace of mind ; a calm within ! AsiA -yet sa 
sirange as the dedtfation may s^pear, this tranquility 
k too C&mcatm ; and to disturb it, is the design of this 
discourse ; a design, not only justified by in^tked ex- 
ample, and demanded by ^ipkiistarial fidelity^ but re- 
quired eifen by love tp your 80«ls» For thou^ it may 
wear the appearance of harshafess, it is in reaUlty the 
kindest expression of friendship ^ k 16 the severity of cme 
who rushes fdrth, and bMaks in upon your fdea^isg 
reverie, when you* a^prcMOch the brink of a dreadful 
precipice ; it is the severity of one, who should kaoek 
loudly, and mterrapt your repose, wh^en he perceived 
your house becoming the-incey of devouring fiames, 
and saw you had scarcely time to escs^, for your 

ISm. ixJ] The Secure alarmed. 179 

peace is a fabe jpeace ; it is the friendship of Joab con- 
cealing' his naurderbus dagger ; it . is the ihimber of 
Sampson in the lap of Delilah, softly depriving him of 
his locks ; it is a fleep obts^ed by opium ; it is the 
loss of feeling, the presage of death j it is the calm of 
the dead sea, the consequence and the evidence of a 
cur^e. Thus we have observed, that before a fall of 
exceeding heavy rain, the wind has been unusually 
stilL Thus historians inform us, that before an earth- 
quake, the air is uncommonly serene. Whether 
therefore you will hear, or whether you will forbear, 
i sound the alarm, and give you warning from God—*' 
" Woe to them that are at ease in Zion." 

But it will be proper to ascertain precisely the char- 
ad»r$ whos^ delusion we wish to destroy. Who de* 
serves this charge ? Who is obnoxious to this curse f 
Some are ^^at ease in Zion" from selfish insensj- 
biuty; some from infidel, presumption; some 
from VAIN CONFIDENCE } some from practical 


1 . Some '^ are at ease in Zion'^ froip selfish • in- 
sensibility. Such 'ther$ were in the days of Amos. 
** Tliey lie," says the prqphet> " on beds of ivory, and 
^ stretch themselves upon their couches^ and eat the 
^ lambs cut of the fiock, and the calves o^t of the midst 
«* of the stall ; they chs^it to the sound of the viol, and 
^^ invttt to then^elves instruments of pusick like Da- 
^^ vid } they drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves 
^* with the chief ointments ; but ar^ hot grieved 
<* FOR TH£ affliction .OF j[OS£PH." In similar lan- 
ipage Isaiah upbrs^ds the Jews. ^ In that day did the 



i89 Tie Snum 4UMrm^ [Sw^ ii|« 

^« Iaxv4 God of Hm« oalilp weepings fti4 ta i|i«wi^ 
^< ii^ and to baldness^ awl to gptrdmg wtt|i sitelicktb ; 
^' ami bdidd joy and gladness^ 4ay«iig iOmn^ and kill. 
'' ipg sheep, eating flesh, and dfin|$iDg wine ; let us eitt 
^'and drink, for to^norrow we slall die^'' How 
criminal this ajipeared in the eyes of Jekovah, wsk^ ba 
inferred from tl^e threatenuag ; ^^ Aad it was reveaM 
^^ in mine ear« t^y the l/>rd of {io6t% «urefy this h^ 
^^ iquity shall je^qX be purged from yon tili ye <fie, saitli 
^* the Lord QfOd c^ 9o5ts." In this representation we 
disGo^a* KMnething pecoliarfy ap^Csihle to many m 
our day. The judgments of Gck} have been abroad 
in the earth, wx has our omi^ nation escaped tlmt iuf ' 
fluence. "^^e have passed through a fieridd singularly 
awfitl and trying. In no common degree hs^ve we 
been called upon to become seidous, humble, and sus- 
ceptible, of instru^ion and impression. W^ instruct 
tion have we received? What impression has been 
made upon qur n^inds? Whs^t amuseoients have w^ 
relinquished? What correspondence of fedUng with 
the dealings G|f ^od hav^ ^e discovered } What sym* 
pathy in the necessities and woes of half<>fed perishing 
multitudes have we expressed? What tears have wfe 
shed over the funeral df three millions of our fellow- 
creatures, and a h^mdred thousand of our fellow-coun- 
trymen, all torn from their beloved ponneftions, all 
hurried into an eternal state ! Whatever occurs, these 
human brutes graze on, " They regard pot the work 
** of the Lord, neither consider the operation of his 
f* hands/' The cares of the world engross them , the 
pleasures «of the world amuse them; the miseries^ of 
niankind are nothing to them. Like members 

ScK.n*^ Tie $MM ^OMati. iti 

vmd of fioeliDgr '^ A tbouMmd may^ ^ at th^ sidfi^ 
<< atid tea c^ouKUid at their rig^ kamt j" they are gat* 
jafiod if k does '^ not coane aifh ihem/' ^ attentioa 
to Uiek own iady%eiioe refiikleB all thi^r aetioni^ 
Thejr pass %y the poor trav^l^r ¥rtmnded, bleedmg^ 
hay-dead, lett theitf foelinfs sliovM bt shocked at the 
apectMfo* if they ever {^e of their abuad^aee. Of 

. libtrilmte any thing that remaws after €very paaHOn 
$sA appetite is grUtified to excess ; they avoid eveiy 
aaoetfiiEse^of charity : sdl tKpeMe of trouble and of fedU 
ia^i^ diey do tiot ^ visit the fatherless and the widows 
^' kitfaoir aflidtiaii," The eye would afl^ the heart ; 
aiMi the heart nnst not be ideated \ it is their plan to 
Stre ^ at oase/^ And soiYy aa I to be tompcAed to 
aay, that there is aot a few florid pnofestors of the go»» 
^(d, w^ eaqpose themselves to this censure } persons 
^9kb aew seAlous for orthodox a^&titifxitetsi hut cdd in 
geoerous afibctkais; ^ having a name to five,'' while 
Aef ^ are dead*' to aH those fine and tender feeling, 

* a^hkh render us ^social tuid useful ; which constitute 
the ^ry of the man» and of the christaia— '< This 
^ OKin's re%io& is Vain." 

Our dispoe^tions, soiy bpethrea^ are always to corres- 
lymA with the providence of God, and the purposes for 
which he placed t|s in the world. He continues the poor 
always wkh you, and encon^iasses you with diversified 
scenes of distress^ to awaken your attention ; to increase 
your benevdence ; to discover your excellencies ; and 
to form you into a resemblance of Himself, that '* you 
^* may be merdful, even as your Father which is in heav- 
\S eii Is mercifoL'^ The Stoics indeed pbced aQ mercy i^ 

IM The Secure alarmed. [Sxn. v^ 

^nefictace, as ^fistiiigiiished jvom sympathy and com* 
imserattod. Weeping with another, was a littleneai 
lof soul unbecomtng a wise man. Thdr doctrine requii::ed 
this ; for if they were to be insensible to their own af- 
flidionsy they were surely forbidden to fed the calam- 
ities of others. But it is obviously the design of Qod, 
that we should lay the miseries of others to heart, and 
that the kindness we shew them should flow from com* 
{>as8ien ; and so aeeessary is the exercise of this ten» 
demess to the condition of mankind, which is a statia 
of misery and depeqdance, that He has bound it ujpoa 
us by a natural, as well as by a moral law. Such iy 
the very frame and organization of the body, such the 
motion and direction of the animal spirits on the sighfc 
of distress^ that wecsumot help being moved and pained, 
ttnd therefore before we can. be unmerciful, we must 
become unnatural ; and before we oflFer a violence to 
morality, we must^ofier one to nature. And we may 
observe abo, that the strength of the social instinct is ill 
{nroportion to the importance of its exercise in hufnan 
life ; the degree of emodon which exdtes us to weep 
with the miseraUe, is stronger than the degree of sen^ 
sation which urges us to rejoice with the prosperous ; 
because the former stiand mwe in need of our sympathy 
and assistance than the latter. God has clearly exr 
pressed his wiU in the Scriptures. There he reqmres 
us to ^* ndnd every man also the thin^ of others ;" to 
*< be pitiful f to ** put on bowels of mercies." So- 
dety is placed before us, both dvil and religious, as a 
body, where « if one member suffers, all the members 
« suffer with it.'* The gospd, we are assured, not 
nnlv iUtiminatea but softens ; it takes away ^ the he^ 

»of stone/' and g^ves us ^hearts of fkedkJ' This in- 
ftuence of dMne grace we are never sofiered to overi 
look in those charaders which are held forth'a» worthy 
of our imitation. View David; what think you of a 
mscn who could say even of th^m who had ^ rewarded 
•« him evil for good, to the spoiling of his soul" — ^ But 
^ as for me, when they were sick, my dothing wad 
^ sadcdoth, I humbled my soul with fasdng > I iMhaved 
^ myself as though he had been my friend or brother ^ 
^ 1 bowed down heavily, as one that moumeth for hi9 
^ mother/' Nehemiah, though high in office, the fa- 
vonrite of the king,< and enjoying every personal satis^ 
(action, k distressed because his ^ brethren are in a& 
'^ iiAion, and the dty of his God lies waste.'' Jeremi^ 
criesy <^ for the hurt of the daughter of my people sun 
^I hurt^ I am black; astonishment has taken hold 
^ on me ; O that my head were waters, and mine eyes 
^ a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night 
** for the slain of the daughter of my people." Paul 
could ^^ ask wJio is weak, and I am not weak, who i& 
** ofiended, and I bum not ?" But, Oh ! contemplate 
Him who "went about doing good;** who when 
exhausted with fatigue suffered the moments allotted 
to needful repose to be invaded without murmuring ;. 
who " in all our afflidions was afflicted ;** who by an 
exquisite sensibility made the sorrows he beheld his 
own ; who " took our infirmities, and bare our sick- 
^^ nesses ;'* who when he saw the multitude fainting, and 
having nothing to eat, ^^had compassion on them;'' 
who wept WITH friends around the grave of Lazanis> 
and OVER enemies as *• he drew near the dty/* Wa& 
He ever at ** ease in Zion ?*' 

Wm te sudk te hava ad daitt fo tll|& koDOur cf du- 
slug with ikese men of mercys hMtlei bjr the Ood «l 
kfve. Tou may perhaps bi r^^Kly ta coogilttttla^ ]rou»» 
i«lv«s j yau» may ima^ne that you escape rnunb aogoidv) 
and that you would ovily increase youp sufienngs bjF 
sharing in the ^ef of othera. Novr acknowledgiitng 
this, W0\dd it not be Tirtucms, and peetifiarly praise^ 
worthy ; would it hot resemble Him^ who ^^ pleased not 
*^ himself;'' and who, " though he was rich, yet farcfw 
•* sakea became poor ?*' But we-are not going to applaud 
insensibility ; the tenderness we recommend is accom** 
panied with sensation ixt superbr to any the selfish 
and the unfeeling ever experience^ If it is a source of 
pain, it is also a source of pleasure. This sensibility 
gives another degree of life, adds a new sense, enlarges ' 
the sphere of satis&dioa, and increases the relish of 

For the unfeeling wretch conscience has no kind 
office to perform; it has no pleasing recoUeftions or 
prospers, with which to refresh him; no delicious 
entertainments with which to feast him. It never caress* 
es, but it often smiles. ** Neither do they which go by 
" say, the blessing of the Lord be upon yau ; we bless 
*' you in the name of the Lord." For him no orphan 
prays, no widow sings. To all the luxury of a Job he 
is a stranger : " when the ear heard me, then it blessed 
^* me ; and when the eye saw me, it gave witness to 
^ me, because I delivered the poor when he cried, the 
^ fsitjierless, and him that had none to help him : the 
^blessing of him that was ready to perish came upon 
^ me, and I caused the widow*s heart to sing for Joy/* 
?or him the evil day comes on charged with every 

ifeR. ix,3 The Secure ahrmd. ma 

berrw. He has no asylum in the feelings of the com* 
mooiffry the happiness of whose menibers he neve? 
ipaghc. When he fails, there b none to receive him ; 
every application k rejeded ; homeless atid destitute, 
.ke hears £rom .many a merciless lip, ^his mischief is 
^returned .upon bis own head, aod his violent deeding 
^1^ is Qdme Mdbwn upon his own pate.*" Seiaed with af* 
>fli£lion, he is led into his chamber, but hears from tio 
inspired Toice as be enters, *^ the Lord 'will d^Uver hith 
^^•in time of trouble ; the Lord will strengthen him up- 
^ on the bed of lafiguidiing ; he will make, dl his^ bed in 
^^ his sickness." His oSspring appear ; he beholds 
^the desire of liis eyes, on whose desolate Iiours be 
^ should have entailed mercy ; but not to him belong 
** the promise, his seed is blessed ;" no divine Co^^ 
forter says, ^^ leave thy fatherless children, I will pc^^ 
** serve them alive ; and let thy widow trust in mfe/* 
" The memory of the just is blessed ; but the name of 
" the wicked shall rot." To a dying man there is 
sometMng in the thought that he shall not be missed, 
that his charafier is more perishable than his body, 
that the door of life will be shut upon him, and bolted^ 
before he is scarcely out, that sinks the wretch lower 
than the grave. But •* after death, the judgment j* 
and his roUing ejres read inscribed on the wall, ^*he 
^ shall have jud^Mnt without jmercy, who shewed no 
«' mercy/' Have you courage to pursue Jjim further ? 
Sfee him at the bar of God ; there to answer for crimeSy 
which at no tribunsd here are punishable ; he Is tried 
for being close-fisted and hard-hearted j and what feU 
lowship can there be between an unfeeling wretch, 
jind a Saviour full of " tender mercy ? Then shall thf 

ii& The Secure otartnidL |^Sbs.. 

^ Kingf say unto them on his left hand ; depart, ye 
•*curted/' Why, we were not profligate, we never 
Oppressed any—*' I was an htingred, and ye gave me no 
^ meat ; I was thirsty, and ye* gave me no drink ; I 
^ was a stranger^ and ye took me not in ; naked, and 
^ye dofhed me not; sick, and in' prison, and ye 
"visited me Aot/* *^Lordv when saw we thee anr 
^ htmgred,^ or athirst, or a strismger, or naked, or sick, 
•* or in prison, and (fid not minister unto thee ?" " Veri. 
^ ly, I say unto you, inasnmch as ye did it not to one 
* of the least of diese my brethren, ye did it not to me." 

IL Some '^ are* at ease in Zion'* from infidsl pur- 
WMPTiON. If there be any truth in the Scriptured,- 
tlibe dispositions of the gener^ty of mankind are very 
unsuitaUe to tlieir state, and their destiny. When we 
see them amused with trifles ; when we viei* them 
deeping securely ;> ^hen we hear them singing, devoid 
of all concern, we are ready to ask, is this a prison ? 
Are these sons of mirtbi,« tb^ sons of death ? Are these- 
men under sentence of condemnation, and waiting on* 
ly the hour of execution? Such is the testimony of 
this book, " For the wrath of God is revealed from 
^heaven against all ungodliness and uurighteoiisness 
** of men*" " Upon the wicked God shall rsun down 
^fire and brimstone,, and an Ykoxj^jjfifd tempest; thi» 
** shall be the portion of their cup/' " He that believ- 
" eth not, is condenmed already." Why then are 
they not alarmed I They do not believe. Were they 
persuaded of " the terror of the Lord," it would be 
impossible for them to live in a state of apathy and in- 
difference. CoiJd they believe that **.God resiateth 
" the proud," and be e^y in their pride ? Could they 

^R. ^.3 Wbc Secure alanmcL 187 

tieUeve tb$t he <^ ibbprretk the covetous;' and be edSf 
f n tbeir covetopsness ? No ; dj^if you really believe %)» 
iruf^h of God, apd were you fully convmced tijol aU 
ihe threfLteBing^ he has denounced m jhis wo|-d will be 
iolalUbly ajC£ois\plished ; ^^ the joints of your Iqim 
^^ would be Iposedy and your knees would »sotte .one 
>^ against aipother." If you had the faith ^' of a Noah/' 
jA yfovid " nK)ve" you " with fear^' and le»d you ,ta 
^^ build afi arJ^" If you had only the ^th of a d^:idl^ 
you would ^^ tremble '" but you have not even thtb 
Thus the sagred writers have reasoned brforp u& 
*' Wherefore doth the wicli^ed contemn God ? He hath 
** md in hjis kwtU God will not requite it,^ " T^^^ 
^^ have ;^eved the l^ord, and ss&dy It is not He^ nei^ 
V tfaer shall i^tl come upon us, neither shall we see 
^'.fsword or famine/' ^' Because sentence against an evil 
^ work is -npt executed speedil;yf there£cu:e the heart of 
f the^son^ of men is fuUy set in them to do evil.*' 9e* 
ca«etMga»ow,isnotin sight when the judge pro. 
wvmces the sentence, they conclude upon their seca- 
i*ity-^^ where is the promise o£ his coming? ail 
^ things continue as they were from the beginning of 
^.the creatioA. V ^' One generation, passeth away, and 
^anolher cometSi; but the earth abideth forever/ 
jBntafter aU, what is this ease whidi flows from infidel 
l^ersunMon t First, it is obtained with diftculty. For 
before ^a maa, who designs to get rest is tlti3 '^^Tt 
can 9^ 4own sstfe and undisturbed, he has to prove that 
the Scripture Is a fsdaehood ; he has to reason down 
every species of evidbnce ; he has to bring his minfd 
to betieve the strangest Improbabilities, and the grossest 
cootracfi^ons ; hp has to caffkaxn how weak CAen 

f B& Tjjff Scture alarmed. t'^^^* ^^ 

tould deliver the ^ablimest wisdom, or "wicked mat 
tould be the most ' ardent lovers of vivtue, the most 
zealous promoters of holiness ; he has to demonstrate* 
that those persons who took nothing on trust,' and ipIm» 
made every kind of proof their study, were att deceive 
ed where they professed themselves to be most oertain ; 
he has to persuade himsdf that he is triser than the 
vrisest of mankind ; and though his vanity woidd mud^ 
aid (he latter convlAioii, yet surely, taking the wfaok 
together, it can btt'no iQcousideraUe task. 

' Secondly^ It is partial, and Kable to int^rruptioii. 
For there tan l)e no perfeft satisfa^on, \^thout per- 
fect certainty; now this, it is impossible to acquire. 
In spite of all his endeavours to extirpate them, some 
Remains of truth wiD occasionally vex him. There is 
an internal witness^ whose voice wiH sometimes he 
heard ; when conscience cannot govern, it cdn cehsul'e ; 
when it has not power tfhoUgh to satisfy, it is able to 
torment. Sleeping couvlftions will sometimefs be 

awakened, and fresh endeavours will be needful to lull 

. . - ■» 

them again to repose. Thbugh they are not always 
• ^* in l)ondage to fear j** they are, as the apostle ire- 
marks, *• subjeft to it :•* and a faithful rq)foof, ftr ail 
alarming sertnott ; In accident, or a disease ; a sudden 
death, or an opening grave; and a thousand other things, 
may revive their alarm, and make theitt dread a futurity 
at which they have h^bofired to laugh; In thede cases 
their grand resource is div^rsi^n ; and they rusk intd 
company^ and amusements^ in orcter to erase the im^ 
pression; but who can always l>e eng^ed? vi4io can 
- always avoid thought? But, thifdly, the less liable it 
js to be disturbed, the more awful ; fof it is penal; it 

& R. i3L.\ fke Secure akrmid. \ M 

diews^ tlutt Gpd has su&r^d them to wander very re^ 
mote from the trutk tliey deeiped their enemy, and to 
ftmtW^, £ir into the darkness, they loved. Here is 
apUKlidng more inaMsible than *' a spirit of slumber/' 
It is qiieiifcioned whether it be possiUe for any man to 
be realty an alheist^j bot is (there any tilJng «o bad for 
a man to faU into, when abandoned of God ? And is 
there nothing that cao i^volos God to withdraw 
his aesigtanoi from the q^ner ? Is He con)pelIed to 
accompany hijb when he says ^* depart from me^ 
^* for I desire not the knowledge of thy ways ?'' Is 
He unjust, because he does not force the indinttions 
of a man j but allows him in eompUance with his own 
wishes to go alone ? If th^e be an atheist^ we should 
not search for him in the heathen world, but among 
tibose *' who are at ease in Ziouij' ^^ For this people's 
heart is waxed gross, and their i^ars are dull of hear, 
ing, and their eyes they have closed \ lest at any 
time they shoidd see with their eyes, and hear with 
^ their ears^ and shoq}d understand with their heart 
^ a^d should be converted, and I should heal them/' 
♦' They received not the love of the truth, that they 
nn^ht be saved \ and for thb cause, God shall send 
them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie ; 
that they all nught be damned who believed not the 
truth) but had ^easttre in unrighteousness." Hence, 
Fourthly, this ease b fatal ; its duration is momfenta^ «- 
ry $• it must end, and end in anguish and despair. The 
denial of any thing does not £dsify it^ If a man has 
swallowed poison, his adq>tiag an opinion that it can- 
not Idll him^ GQntxibotes nothing to his safety ; and it 
i^ftwiul to stttid andsfe his convictifjn and. hiii death 


s»rriyii^.<agM]|er« Tour deaying a resiirrecitoii, wgH 
not hide yoa forever in the grave* Tour disbdieving 
^ da^Y of retribution, will not ke^ you from .^^pear* 
ing before God. ^' Their judgmeiit»" $ay3 the gpo^ 
tie, ^* now i^ along time iingereth not,.and thdr daqv 
i*^ naticni dumb^eth not," while they re^soi), it foils 
pn ; every alignment brings it one aistance nearer ; th^ 
^nfiitation iset off before the ipfidel began the book^ 
and it may arrive before be has finished it. Noah 
preached to the inhabitants of the old world ; they d^r 
fguled him, and pursued their busing and their plea^^ 
sures, ; but ^' the flood came, and took tjiem aU away/' 
When Lot warned *' his sons4n-law, he seemed un|t9 
«^ them as one that mockef},^' bpit the cities were 4^ ' 
^troyed. Tarious things prophesied of the lews, a^ ;t 
time when there wa? no human pro^ility of th^r 
^QQCDurrence, were minutely accomplished. Ba^yJpa 
seeped secure ; its walk ^er^ impregnable. Its pro- 
▼inoQS defied a ^ege ; hence h^r oo^fidei^pe : ^^ for 
^ thou hast trusfred in thy wic]||;edness ; thou hast said 
^ in jdune heart, I am, and there is none else besifcie 
^^ me ; therefore shall evil come upon thee, thou shak 
^ not know from whence it riseth : and mischief shaft 
^' fall upon diee, thou shalt.not be ^ble tp put it o^ : s^tul 
^^ jdesolation shall come upon thee suddenly, which tboi^ 
^< sfaalt not know." And it was .taken and destroyed 
in one night. ^^ The Scriptures cannot be broken i^ 
^erefore thus jit will be with all the threatenings of 
lieaven : and '^ when they shall say. Peace aHid safety^ 
f^ then sudden destruction cometh upon them,' a^ 
f ' tra^l upon a woman with child \ and they shall not 
f escape." Nor will they . only b^ copdemn^d Apt- 

Sfia. i±^Ji Tie S€^ure itk&mA 191* 

^jthstnidKng t^eir wibelief ; but they wiD be pnaUhedf 
licjr it. Men ate aever mwe offended than when thdr 
irendtj is suspected ; and they are instandy. ready to^ 
demand satisfSiction for the injurious aflfront ; and Gai# 
yotf ^ turn liie truth of God into it lie'* with impun- 
ity ? ''If there should be among you any man, wfaa 
^ when he heareth the irords of this curse, shaS bkso: 
* himself in his heart, saying, I sh^dl have peace, though 
<< I walk in the imagination of my heart to add drunk- 
^^ toness to thirsA: ; the Lord will not spare him, but 
^ then the anger of the Lord and his jeaknisy ishiill 
'** smoke against that man } and all the curses that are 
'' written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lotd 
^ shall blot out his name from under heaven.^ 

IIL Some *' are at ease in Zion** from vaim com*. 
FiDENc'E ; relying On the goodness of their present 
state, and on the certainty of their future happiness. 
See one of these deluded cseatures going up into the 
temple to pray ; ** and the Pharisee stood and prayed 
^ thus with himself i God, I thank'thee that I am not 
as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or 
even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I 
^ give tithes of all that J possess." In this state, **c- 
Cording to his own confession', was Paul 6nce — ^* I was 
^ alive without the law ;" cheerful and happy, full of 
false hope and false joy, fiiDy satisfied of my acceptance 
with God, and a stranger to all apprehension of dan-' 
ger. Such was the church of Laodicea — ^* thou say- 
^est, I am rich and increased with goods, and^iave 
** need of nothing ; and knowest not that thou art 
** wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and 

192 The Secun alarmed4 • [Sea* ix* 

» , ^ '. ' . . 
^ naked/' Nor are these instances unusual^ or sin* 

gular; *' for there is a genjsratiok that are pure in 
^ their ,own eyes, and yet are not washed from their 
** filttiiness/' Therp is then such a thing as spiritual 
jelf-flatiery ; there is such a thing as a delusive depen- 
dence in religion ; yes, ^^ there is a way that seemeth 
^^ right unto a man^ but^^hft end thereof are the ways of 
'^ death/' From innumerable sources is the unhappy 
conclusion drawn ; from pious anqgptors and distin- 
guished privileges j from ritual obsemnces ; from du- 
ties in which the affections are never engaged ; from 
virtues placed opposite vices j fropi comparisons of our- 
selves with others ; from partial reformations } from 
hearing a tiumber of sermons ; from dreams ; from 
sudden impulses 3 from the application of promises; 
from orthodoxy ; from terror in the consdence j from 
fervour in the passions; from spiritual gifts. Tliese 
are only a few articles from the inventory of delusion, 
by wliich the enemy of iouls, according to the char- 
after and circumstances of mankind, excites and en- 
courages a hope which will one day cover them with 
shame. And it sometimes happens, that the same per- 
son successively occupies many of these refuges of lies 
as ^e is expeped by conviction from one, there is 
another to recfeive him; only the continuance of his 
satisfaftion requires, that if his knowledge increases, 
every fresh deception should become more subtle and 
specious. Thus " the strong man armed keepeth his 
" palace 4" and while this ^ is the case, " his goods are 
" in peace." There is a stillness in the conscience. 
The mind has no misgiving feafs. Th^y are back- 
ward to self-exatmination ; ana wish not to have the 


Sbk. i*."} Tie Seeme slarmt^. 19S 

good opiokm thiBy Mtertsin of themselves slidNn. If 
you lived witli them, you would never £nd them wa&<^ 
mg mournfully before the Lord ; you would iieve^ 
hear theox complaining of their inward conft^, or 
hear them asking *^wbat must I do to be sftve4^' 
^ Kothing can be more dreadful than this state ; for con« 
^ ^der only two things; first, this confidence keeps 

them from looking after salvatiofi^ Were it not far 
this shelteir, they would be induced to See for refuge ; 
they are too good to be saved. Hence says our Sa- 
viour, ^publicans and harlots shall enter into the 
*^ kingdom of heaven t)efore" such. Few ever pre- 
tend to vindii:ate vice ; and a vigorous charge in the 
conscience of the ungodly may succeed ; but no weap- 
on can penetrate this self-righteous armour. Wliile he 
fr • eontinues* wrapped up in this presumption, there is no 
w- hope of his conversion ; the word has no power over 

p him. Do we exhort men to believe ? He congratulates 
himself that he is a believer. Do we urge them to re^ 
f pentance ? HE*needs none. Do we press them to escape 

I ' from the wrath to come? He is in no danger. Tie 

. applies to himself only promises and privileges fo 
which he has no chdm, and which will onlv sexy^ tp^ 
render the cgi^equences of his delusion the more pain- 
ful. For th^ course, secondly, will^|erminate )n dre^d-. 
fill surprise and' disappointmen,^; the foolish builder, 
who cUd|bot suspeft the stab^lty of the house, ^will learn 
its weakness in the storm and the rimis ; the i^n is 
past all hope before m begins to'^fear,. iSro; mistake* 
is discovered when it is too late to k rectified ! O \ 
what confusion ! O the horrors of regret and of de* 

» r 

i^air ! " Strive to enter in at the straltnte » for many 


i94 tie SecM^ fiUinAed. *rS£ii. ix^ 

^ will 9«|k. to einter in^ stfid diaU not <>e able. Vfixao, 

, ^ once the master of the house is risen up, and hath 

^ shut to tfa^ door, and ye begin to stand without, and 

^^laiodli^at the door, saying, XiOfd^ Lord, open unto 

^ ^^ ; ifid he shall answer and say unto you, I know 

^^ you not, w^mce you are ; then shall ye begin to say, 

^^ we have eaten' and drunk in thy presence, and thou 

^' hast taught in our streets/ But he shall say, 1 t^ll 

^* you I know jq^ not, whence you are y depart frou) 
** me, all ye workers of iniquity. There shall be weep- 

^ ing and gnashing of teetli, when* ye shall see Abra- 

f* ham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in 

•* the li^ingdom of heaven, and ye yourselves thrust 

•* out/* My dear hearers, remember this awful caution ^ 

and since so many mistake, ^^ let him that thinketh he 

• standeth take heed lest he M;" Dare you trti^ 

your ftate without trying it ? In a bufinefs of everlaft- 

ing importance* can you be satisfied with equivocal or 

with flendef e^dence ? In all other cases will you think 

. you caA never b^ too sure, and is this the oiily one ia 

-WUk^h you are resolved never to doubt? O see that 

you poflTefs that "grace which bringeth falvatioft." 

Oo and compare your charafter with the reprefenta- 

(Sons *j^veil of real chriftian&.m the Scriptures. Go 

and " learn what that meaneth j'* ' " if any man be iu 

' * Chriift, he b a new creature ; t>ld tfaitigs are pafTed 

^ away, and behold ail thiMgs are become new^ We 

sometimes^ try t^ alarm you by' your sin ; we would 

«latm ydSi^^hiis evenftig by your TCHgion ; the rfeligion 

•*^f many of yoil fc likely to prove the means of your 

, *&ternal ruin. 





i&£R. IX.3 

The Secure alarmed. 


♦ •w 


IV. Some "are at ease in Zion" from practical 
INDIFFERENCE. Tou wouU much dffend persons of 
fhfs dafs, wec^ yoiji to Inquire whether they {)efieved 
the Scripture? TThey read k daily ^ ** they come to** 
his mihifters " a« his people come ;" and the preacher 
** is unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath 
'^^ a pleafant voice, and can play well on an infirument ;: 
^^for they hear his words, but they do them nSt." « 
They are ^Mike unto man beholding his natural iace^ 
^^ in a glafs \ for he beholdetfa himsdf, and goeth. his • 
" way, and straitway fbrgetteth what manner of man 
^ he was;* Nor are these persons to be charged sea*- * 
timentally with Antin,omianism, or any other ^rror* 
They. know the gospel io theory ; but tlisy are stranjg;ers 
to its diyiue efficacy. Ot afi the various. charaAers we 
liave to deal with in our /ninistry^ these are the most un* 
likely to ensure success. When we endeavour to cpn-- ^ 
vince the ignorant, or to rouse the unthinking^ we feel 
some hope \ but as for those of you who haire heard 
. th^ gospel from your infancy,, or have sat under it long 
eaough to learn distin&ly and familiarly aH the truths 
it contains ; yiho know every thing we can advance •; 
y^ho believe every thing we q^ pf9ve ;* wl^ can even 
** cot)tend earnestly^for the filitfa once delivered tp the 
*' saints^'' and rest satisfied regarciQe^s of the influ^ce ol^ 
these things in your hearts ^nd lives,, you, you are the 
most likely to driv« ministers -to despair* We preach ; 
youackilbyrledge wA admire ; but ypu discover no more 
concern to ob^^in^the one U^g needful we propose,, 
than if you were persuaded "we called you " to follow , 
^* a cunningly devised fable/^ ' Y#u believe there is no 
felicity in l^e crejttur^, and th^t sattsfadion is to be 


Tbe^^fiun 0ku^i0d» 

•[Seiu IE*. 

foand in God 011I7; tbe conildion ^ j«tt, but it i| 
c^iopietely n^tlm i for y<>Q ai^ ^ Iwsakiiig the Foim* 
*' tain o^ living waters^ Md bewim out to yoursdim 
«^ broken ctatems, qst«rw thft can hofd iiq water/' 
You confess tlier« is a.hell» and 1^ lis ndaery is ex^ 
treme, bat you never take one step to avoid it Wo* * 
ciy, ^' death is rapidly approadiiDg you ; and die.Jud^ ' 

., f* ^andeth before the dpor :" you ^josmr^ yef> attd 
•slumber on. Your life is a perpetua} cootiadiftion to 

, your creed ; you are not Iiappy^ ^d conlfivis not to 
be miserably. Q yrhdt a waste of ipcana and privileges 
have you pcca^pned ! Why did you not inform lie , 
from the beginning that you never intended to regxrd 
these things^ then we could have turned to others ; you , 
bav^ robbed them of sermons which tbey would have 
heard to purpo§e, and which you have heard in vaig^ 
I need not say, you are pot christians, that you are 
wholly unlike them; that you do not "war a good 
f ' warfarq ;'* that you do not " run the race set before 
•* you ; for you are acquainted with all this j" you dQ 
jiqj mistake your condition } you knp^ you are in a ^ 
state of condemnation, and are still at ease ! ! what 
a paradu, are you ! Nothing can be so hateful to the 
SuprenR Being as this state of inaftivity. He would 
you ^«w?re either cold, or hot.^ Sinpe you know 
your lord's will, and do it not, you will ** be beaten 
" with m^y stripes,** H It will b^ more tolerable for 
** Sodom and Gomorrha in the dav of judgfupnt than , 
" for you." No instaikp ip the ocripture is recorded 
of the conversion o^ P^^vf^ ^^ 7^^^^ peculiai[ circum- 
Itances. Yoa are sermon'p^pf. A Bib^ h^as poured 
forth all its treasures j)efor^ you ; it has thyown down 



9t ^yODf ibet imvttri and licH, bat it has exdted neither 
hope Mir fear. Surely y^u hs^ve reason to apprehend 
jtbM means 90 icng sj^ptted^i vAin^ will bealways^se* • 
less ; ior what probal^ity is tl|ero that the word which 
.has dqoe Botbipg ^eady, should proro - efficacious 
fiow f ^^iK the sword of the Spirit become keeoer ? ' 
WBLtlff remedy acquire sxmre virtue to heal ? 

This Hhistration of our subject Ie»d& us to suggest 
the fbllolHtig iftferenq»* 

First, If « woe be to them that are at ease in Zion,** 
surely they are highly criifiinal) ' who coiintenance and 
promote such a state. And of this number are min- 
isters, who preach so as never to give offence, or - 
excite alarm. *^ for they have healed the hurt of the 
** daughter of my people slBghtly, saying, iPeace; peace^ 
*^ when there is no peace ; therefore shall they fall'^ 
^ among them that fall ; in the time of their visitation 
•* they shall be cast dowp, saith the Lord.'' ** A won- 
^ deriful and horrible thing is committed in the land t 
^ the pro^ets prc^hesy falsely, and the priests bear 
f\ rule by th^iar means, and my people love to have it 
^ so : and wiiat will ye do fii the end thereof ?'* O 
how dreadrul will^t be in the day of judgement to hear 
the replfoach, ^ There is the man that deceived me, 
•* and thereby destroyed me. Cursed watchman^ .you 
^ aevtt* announced my danger ^IL. the eneihy had se- ^ 
« cured his prize." Of this number are all those > 
characters, who wiU xiev-er seize an opportunity t% 
warn a fdlow.creatur^or a friend, of his" condition ; . 
and who will suffer a loul to perish, rather than mcur 
ft reflection, er a frown, by th| exercise of faithful 
l^bdness. <^ tlou^ fiiitt not hate thy brpihor id thine 


198 The Secure alar^d. FSer.!*; 

f^ heart ; tftou shdt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour; 
^ and not suffer sin upon him/^ 
• * S^ondly, If " woe be td them that are at ease ii^j 

^ 7lo^^'' ^^^ ^^^^ ^ troubled when they find their 
r tonnections distressed and alarmed with a sense of their 

sin and danger. ^^ This sickness is not unto death ;^ 
this pain is a sign of returning life ; this ** want** wiB 
* make the prodigal think of home^ where ^^ there is 
^ bread enough and to spare.* When peojAe of th« 
world see their friends and reUtions m spirituid an:pety/ 
they fear approaching dierangemient, or mdandioly ; 
they are e^ger to send them intp company ; or to or- 
der them to the theatre. But ^se of ps who have been \ 
through this date qif fnind ourselre^i can rejoice wMIe 
we sympathize, knqiving that it is the (common method 
^of the Saviour to wound befo|:e he heals ; to humble 
before he exalts ; and hoping that this process is the . 
preparation for that mercy, which is never prized tffl 
we are made to feel our misery. Such was the dispo<i> ^ 
^ sition of the apostle-—** Now I rejoice not that ye were 
f* made forry, but that ye sorrowed 4o repentance { 
f^'fpr godly forrow woiketh repentance to ialvation 
f* not to be repented t)iF ; b||t the sorrow of the world 
** worketh death." « 

Thirdly, If « woe be to theift that are at ease in Zioa,*' 

^ there is ^thing fo much to be di^aded as false ^umty 

in religion. I know that there are many alarms which 

4Aever issue in salvation. I know that many fear hdl» 

^ * who neVer fear sin ; but still th^<Kstressing convktiOnB • 

* are hopeful \ they produce exereons which may receive 

a heavenly tendency j^ they idok like Ae harbingers 

of rel^ion } ^hey are blossoms if not fhdt } and tliou|;I| 


ing tJb^. Some are a£mtd of their trouble }. we wifl|i 
tbey were afriid of their peace. They are g^d whak 
byxompany, or amuseinent^ they h^ve freed thwiaelfes 
from o&rtain painful iiDfiressioiiff ; whereas thb i& rather 
a. judgment^ than a merqiift They zi^joice, says .^aii old 
lllyine, to get rid of a du^dx^ as!^ though it has left ^ 
them in a def^p decline. There h nothing sp fatal as 
thie carcjhsaness and indjifference of a man who wa» 
.M;ver distres^ abo^t sin, or one hour's 
rest, ]by saying, '^ what have I dooi!^ .?'' It ii» terrible 
when a man is ftruck whh spiritual senselessness. Bet« 
ter for Ood to ruin your estale, to bereave you of 
your friends, , to destroy your health, than suffer you 
to have a *^ seared consdence,'"^r a j^i^rt ^^ hardened 
.^^ through the decdetfrilness of sin/' It would have 
bfeu well, if the fqo^ virg^ had beeai rpused fromf 
* dietr. sleep before the midcugbt cry, had it been doo^ 
PWB. by the inlimsion of, robbers. This imjtKes us to 
l^so urgent iu this case i auKious if by any^ifeaas, 10 
p^odiace in you that salutary alarm which wilt lead you 
to '.precaution and remedy ', and by destroying the 
p^ice of sin, secure, to-you ^* the pe^ce;^ Ooa which 
«< passeth all understanding." * ./ • 

Fourt^y, If ^ woe be to theii| than are at eaS0 in 
^< Zioi^'' there is consolation for them f haA are dis* 
tressed thfsre. Nothing is more c^flfigp^ t)|an t(f find 
gracious souls filkd wi||k' discouraging a{!|a^^n8k>iis> 
and fyaiifs^ a Jfcfr equently <^ they refuse ^ be com£c>rt- 
'* ed«" .W€ do %iot admire and ^af^hud aU their ^oubts 
and their dejections ) b^ .these painfiil sopples are 
easily saxQunted/forj^ ^ they; lif on the safe ^^ ^ 



too fis^geuH Earned. l^tx. tlu 

ffid arise^ 1. From their view of th* iafxirtaiice of cfae 
#MicMo ; it is nolking bn t\am the evertasting sa|TiU 
tim of tJkeir spiik Such a thbg cannot be sBghtly 
deterjaaiiml.; thay are always gas^ckms ; they can tietrcr 
liavefWfficieot certainty ; thi^ require evidence u^a 
fvideQce^. *^ This i» the only oppoxtunity ta ensure ^ 
what, if I should be mistaken ?^ 3* Fro^ a convidioi^ 
ef the .deceilfulneaB of theur owii hearts, which haate 
ofteu imposed upon tjNem. S. From a recoUe^on 
that muiy live anil die in their delusicm i and what if 
they sheuki be of , the number ? Thus they can hardly 
argue thecMdves into ease ; and while others do |iot 
fear at ati, these fear tQO much j whSe. others will aot . 

perceive the sadt^t ewdeaoes of sin, these vritt hardly 1 

'difpern the fisdrest evidences of grace* Both are blame- 
a^, but they are not equally dangerous. The one 
loses lue peace for a time ; j^he other loses his soul to 
tven It is better to have a .bui;deued, than a benusA- 
Hl conscieeee ; it b better to have a scmpulw^, than 
a ticent||M3s nund ; tkey are nc^ likely to perish> wh|^ 
«r^ afraid of perishing. But after eU, qhnstiws^ yoor 
,God is^cqpcerned, not only for your safety, but for 
your happiness ; and many advantages would arise 
from your spiriAial ; JQy. Jesus is ^'appoiitfed unto 
^' them that mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for 
^^ ashes, ^ oil of joy for mourning, the garaieftt 
^ p£: praise for. the s^rit of lflh||ir^ss.'' He has ysrom^ 
ed >* another :P[>toforter, i^o shall abide. ^th you for 
** ever." He has written this bodi: for your " leara- 
iug, that you througli patwoce and comfort of the 
Scriptures might have heme/' To his aum^ert He 


t ■ I 

dsk. IX.] Tbe Secure alarmed* ft)l 

lias S2dd, ^ (!:oiiifort ye, comfdrt ye my p£0[4e ;^' O 
fKat I could now execute my commission ; O that I 
bad the tongue of the learned, slnd could Bphk % wcrd 
in s^sison to him that is weary ; O that I could remove 
-an your groundtess fears and dbtressing jeaknines ; O 
that I could place the promises within your View, and 
witfhin your reach. ^ Hessed are the poor in spirit, for 
^thrirs b the kii^dom of heaven." ^< Blessed are 
^th^ that mourn; £(jt they rfiall be comforted.'' 
** Blessed are they that do hunger and thirst after 
<« righteousniiss, for they shsOl be filled." ^^ Blessed 
^ are the merciful, for they shall obtun mercy." Re- 
ifteRiber ^ the sacfifices of God are a broken spirit ; a 
^broken akod a cdntiitii heart,/ Ood will not despise.'^ 
keMember the daWn is iht {fledge and tlie beginning 
of day. Remember your desires are an evidence of 
eoineiliing good, and in ^^ flssuf aiice of something bet* 
^'ter.'^ ^'Now our Lond Jesus Christ himself, and 
^ Ood even mir F^er, vribich hath loved us, and 
^ hath givdti us enhrbsting conedation and good llope 
^^ through grace, comfort yomr hearts, and establish 
^ ytm ill MGery good wcard and wonrli." Ambn* 





On progress in religion. 

Joshua sui. 1. 


vsm the addx68» of God to Jo$I^ 
oa J nor was. it vain. It stirred ^^ up his pure ound 
^by way of resnembrnce ;'' aad having ^^assembfed 
^ the whole congr^tion of the childrea of Israd to* 
^ gether at Shiloh/' he said unto themv " How bng 
^ are ye sbck to go to possess the land which the^Lord 
^' God of your fathers hath given you ?^ They shoold 
have marched forward^ advancing thiir arms to tiM 
extremities of the promised possession. It was adl thehf 
own by divine grant ; and they ha^ only to sd&e it* 
When they entered, they burned with sKal; every 
day was distinguished by some fresh triumirii; they 
went ^^ from conquering to conquer/' But their £sr- 
vour soon cooled, their courage soon fuled ; and satis* 
fied with an imperfed acquisition, they laid down their 
arms, and resumed them only when they became 
necessary for defence. 

And this, my brethren, reminds us of a two-fold 
reproach, which attaches to christians. When our 

jSavioilr had reouved ^^ all- power in lieaveA and ia 
^ eartb^' for the purpose of spiritual empire ; he said 
to his disciples, ^ Go ye into all the worid, and preach 
** the gospel to every cfeattare;" *'go ye, and teach 
^< aU nations, baptinng them in the name of the Fa- 
^' ther, v^ of the S<m, and of the Holy Ghost ; and, lo! 
^ I am with you always even to the end of the workL" 
Thus dear, and thus extensive was their commission. 
They were to subdue a rebeUioos glpb^ ^^ to th? obedi- 
^^ ence of faith/' This alone was to circumspibe, add 
to t|&nnin;ate their exerjLiops. They began well. The 
company of the publishers flew like angels, having the 
everlasting gospel to preach to the inhabitants of the 
earth. From Jerusalem they proceeded in all direc- 
tipm, filro thjs lisfss of a cirde fhim the pentre. Qom- 
pimdug in Judea, th^ soon ^ead over afl Bdestihe, 
Altered the contiguous countries in Asi?, visited the 
istes, reached Eurq^. - .And successively the banners 
of the cross were dis[dayed, in province beyond prov<^ 
^ce, and in dime beyond dime. But instead erf con* 
dnuing their gloriouH caneer, after a while they looked 
back, and w^re satisfied with their pirogress ; they pre- 
ferred ease to acquisition; they begjftn to divide the 
%nil they had gained ; they often turned their arms 
3gnnst ^^.other, while the enemy pressing upon 
them, frequently (^ged them to contra^ their limits, 
and to diange their position. Since then, their caus^ 
has not prospered ; and many a judgment has been in* 
ftd^d, to awaken them to a sense of their sin, and ^ 
conviAion pf their di^ty. Many a voice has been rais* 
ed in vain ; calling u^^n them to arise and go forward ; 
feminding them that is was all purch^^d and proQifse 

ad cMtOTf ; di2|t tbe ^ heatlkki/^ w» d^tineil to be 
f< their inheritance^ and the utt^tfdmt parts ^ the 
f^^^earth* were to bBccmm ^^tfcefr posidegsion.'* May, 
we hope^ thtt «l length the Toice of Ood k begisiiing 
to br k^trd ? and that hi^ inssseiigersiy spreadiiig abroad 
to theeast, and tq the WMty to the AOith, aiiod to thfe 
$iMth^ lys ^^ gibry shdl .be revested, |ad all flesh shall 
^< see it 4^thcr r May the Lord hastoa it in fa» time. 

And to drkvr nearer the design of this discotirse^ 
fjkrisdaiis, God lias assigned yon a glorious portion. 
^^The Kbes are fallen to" you *^m pheasant phtes; 
«*y«i,'* you ♦•have a goodly heritage/' Opening be* 
fore yot^ the discoveries of revelation. He said^ Maktt^ 
fidt this your own ; advif nee ; leave nothing unpossessed. 
At first you wefre &ted vntk spiritu^ ardour. Tot^ 
bdd ^^ aside every weight/^ Tqu were seen on the foil 
3tretch to re«ich *f t^ end of your £iith, even the saL 
" vation erf your soub." Had you then heard a pre- 
di^fttoO) of what h^is since taken place in your dispo- 
mtkins and pursuit^, it would h^ve appeared like ^ an 
^fidte tale.'' But, aks! you have become these in^ 
credible bharadsers. Your lovq ha^ waxed cold. Yoii 
have sat down long before you have obtained a com<> 
plete viftory; long before you have finished your 
course 4 long before you have realized all the invalu-^ 
able blessings of your inheritance ; and I am come this! 
evening to remind you, J. That there REMAmETH 


• pAiiT h Tea, dirlititt&it tubiub aisif AiKtTH rrt 
¥tty. ^tjon LAK0* tp Be POsecsssD ; many i:ities 
pmd sti'idtig hddst maay fine phtns, and. '< sprbgr of 
*• water/* ' many bMiiitiftd vsdlcys, and very "frnftfiil 
^ }iffls"--'^t^ to speak less in figure, much of year re- 
Hjgion is utlattaineri, vncxtufned, unei^oyed ; ytm are 
l^r frxyiA its boundaries* Very little of it indeed da 
8otne of you patks^ ^ ytm coi^ntand o^ty a small, Sn- 
conslilerable comer, scarcely a&irding you a subfift- 
ence. But I make nq £fiin^on« ; I addrefi myself 
even to those of you, who have made the greatest pro. 
gress in the divihe liie. And surely it is not difficidt t^ 
madce you senflble of your remaining deficiendes^^-^ 
Srkw near those iUusrrious characters, whose history 
tt recorded in the Scriptures of truth. Compare your- 
^ive^ with those finished likencfsses of christians, which 
an InfalfiUe pencil h^ given us in the gospd. Ob* 
serVe well the sublime int«fntion of the gracious dispen- 
sation under ^Ich you l^ve, and which is nothing less 
lAtan to ms^ke you ^ partakers of the divine nature,^ 
to enable you to live •* the life of God," and to rear 
^tt you •• perfect, even as your Father which is in 
** heaven is perfect *' 

Take a survey of your religion j 1 would examine 
you with regard to three articles, which have a de- 
pendence on each other, and in each of which you 
win be found " to come** woefully " short/' 

. First, Consider your knowjledob. ' While you are 
men in years, are you not '^ children in understand- 
^^ing?" You have been liberally favoured with the 
means <tf information* Do you possess all you should 
|\ave known } and aU you could have known i After 


gfip On F/vgust U Jf4iigm- j[$iVJ|^ 



fio mxxf fears, of heatings vlot addktpns hpfe joi 
fos^/ifi to 79ur stores ? Are y^ fi)IM ^tk Mf pro^ 
^ence to ^* ponder the path of y^r he^"" tp ^* Ipofc 
/< well to yaifr goings/' and to diacera sfiareg vheie 
there is Ao appearance of dangca: i Qp you ^' walk 
V droNxitpectly/' f ' not as fodsi^ biid; as wise ?" HMe 
^fqix 9 snffidc^vy pf holy wisdom to ^^f1lI^ \rell your 
<^ own houses,'' and to *^ tr^ up yo^ chiUrep ie th^ 
*^ nurture aof^ admonition of the Lord ?*" Are you abb 
to ^^^v^e to every man that asl^eth you^ a rjeason oJF 
^^ the hope ths^ is ip you ?" Can yop a{^y gener^ 
j^inciples to particular cases? Can you. reconcile 
jjromises and poroyidences when they neem- adverse to 
each other i Does '' th^ wjo^d of Christ d«rell in you 
f* &ICHJLY in ALL wisdpfn ?" Hayp you clear, comr 
bining, and iippresslve views of any trpth of the Scrips 
ture ? And ^e there pot m^py subjects of revdation, 
with which you hjive ko af quaintance ? Alas ! with 
many processors of rel^ion, more . than |ialf the biUe 
is entirely useless. They confine their attention only 
to a few doctrines, apd even these they regard not as 
f hey are delivered in the undefined grandeur of the 
sacred writers, but as they are reduced and modelled 
to stand conveniently in a human creed, or a huipan 
system. What a difference is there between the ocean 
of revelation, and such a vessetfuU of truth, as any 
formulary of doctrine contains ! but the latter has often 
been mistsfken for the former } and because it is easy 
to penetrate to the bottom of the one, many imag^e 
they have fiithomed the other. David ^ves ;US a fin« 
idea of revelation, when he tells us ^* it is* exceecfing 
^ broad." Of « all" other •* perfection"^ he could see i 

^Rj r.] On Prcgresf in Hel^ciPu tCfi 

f^'tsn^mdf bat he viewed diis as hicompreheilfibld 
oad bemiuSefir ; here he saw room fbir uticeaiixfg prog<« 
fe& ; here he knew frefb beatfdes 2tnd glories would 
ta pi^rpetiiaOy discoveted; W reWaard the humble and 
adive cniqmren And why &ould We ftand in this ea> 
tu&ife country, and suffisr a tttan, faflible Eke oorsdvesy 
md/wklr no better sourees of infonnation, to mtrk u» 
off arfMece Miy of the sacred soB, to draw around us a 
dsde, over which we are made to prbmfoe never ta 
fkpf^h Hear^ O son of Abraham^, the voice of thy God » 
^ Go through the hend in the length and the breadth 
^of k, for to* thee have I ffven it.** Hear thie language 
df one of fab servants j *0 ye Hebrews, <*ye are dljSk 
^d bearing : ibr when for, the time ye ought ta h& 
^teasdiers, ye harve need diat one teach you agakii/ 
^^ which' be the firft princi()les of the oracles of God ;r 
^^itnd ate becofne such as have need of mflk, and not 
^ of ftrcnig drink. For every one that ufeth' miOc is 
** unsk^ful in the word of rigbtMufiiefi : for he is af 
^babe. Bntftrong meat belongeth to them, that are 
^of full age, even thofe who by reafon of ufe, have 
^*« their ie»fes exercifed to difeern both good and eviL 
^Therefore leaving the principles of the doArine" of 
** Chrift, let us go on unto perfe^on.'* He means 
parfb^c^ In^ knowledge ; he would not have us con* 
fine our attention p^petualty to a few particular parts ; 
or to ufe hb own image, would not have us to be al-^ 
ways "layii^- again the foundation/' infiead of going 
on with the supliilfarudure ; but, alas! when will the 
lindeiibindiiigs of our people ^tttf tfs to extend our 
views ? 'When wHl they roufe i^oheir minds, and ex- 
trtHheii* faculties- to taloe in something beyond a few 

cAttimobfpbce ifefleAiOns, wbieh they ' havb hetxA 
ihxm wfthottt namber? Why wiP tbey idw^ftdont 
ftaun^uf lo abide ^^ir ^^ thf firft prindpfes <rf the br^ 
^^ tdes Iff God ;^ or if itr^ advMifie, i^hy witt^ k; 
fine to acodrnpany us one de^ee beyond them ? 
' SoGOodly, Obsertre ydur holiwess. For the Inurarl; 
edge of persooi mty surpass their espedence, end s 
grcm^h in gifts is ^rery di&iageifliaiUe from m gromntil 
JUf gra<:e. Review then yoilr sanftification ; fltnd <nB 
lerme to ask, have you no remaiiiing c&imxptikme tb 
•libdae? Are your pafions entiveiy under the Gontrodl 
0f reyKm i Are your aflb Akms aH hea^ettly ? A|e frou 
^ cradfitfd to Ae vorid i' NaVe yon oa indue eq^uni 
|«r it ( 00 improper e^^e^Ution £ro» it ? 'Axel fou 
yoeperly atfsAed with the evil of am? I>o you tb4io# 
Iti uouni over it» witch a^gai^il it i lyd ygm ^^ deny 
^ yourselvest .aed take i»p yoiMT crpsS) wd fojlQW*' |e«» 
<U8» ^^ without the camp/' gladly ^ bearing hi& re'' 
V^ proach V b your obedi^ce ui^vers9l» unvaryMigf 
theerfttl? Have yon fuUy imbHwl the «^pe«s of 
)fouc rdigion ? Are there no deficienci^ perocj^k 
in every grace, ia every duty f Are you ^* ^r^ng in 
^ fjfith ?** Do you " abound in hope r Do yon J»v« 
God^ and do you love him supremely ? Po yiW. loiw 
your neighbour? and dp yi3U love him. 99 yourself? 
Can you ^^ love 3K>ut enemies, ^md btess them that 
«< curse you.?*' Are you ^' dothed vritb huodUty ?" b 
your worship always spiritual ? Do you never ^ offqi: 
^< the sacrifice of foob ?'' Xh yo)i not o^tep pay 1^ 
fiormality, and heftr jM^wi ? I need 90t press these in- 
iiuiries. If you are^&istiMs indeeflt yw ^^ >^^^ 
to anivmr them with a^ luvi teaiA-^ JSn^ 1K« mt9 

Sbr. <.3 OnJ^Mgrm iitJUightf. 9^ 

1^ judgment wilh ttiy servant 1 my 8oal deaveth to the 
^ dttsC : wretcHed man that I am : perf e& that 
^ which cdncerneth me; thjr mercy, O Lord, en^ 
^ d^Kthior erer ; fofsake not the wor)^ of thbe owa 
** hands.'* 

Hurdly, Tlunk ti your p*ittvii.£0£». These are 
iDnumerable aod inralnable. lit is the priTilege of 
iSinaciaiis to have ^ exceec&ig great and preciouf 
^ promises.r^ It is the privilege of chrbtUns to ^^be 
^careful for nothing*.** \l \s the privily of chri^ 
tiaas to ^ enter into rest/' It is the priv9ege of 
dbristians to <<^ hwfe peace vrith God th^o^h our Lotd 
.^Jesos Chnst^'' It is the privilege of chrbtkms t6 
i^valk all day hi the light of his o^MiteAance^" to 
^ n^ice in the Lord always *^ to ^ rejotce la hhm 
^ with joy unspeakable and fnll of glory.*^ Ill is the 
privilege c^ christians to ^ count it all joy when they 
^ fall into ^vers temptations ;'• and to *' glory in tri- 
^ bulation also j" and all this hajs been exemplified \ xsit^ 
have ^^ received the gospel in much affli^on, with joy 
•^ of the Holy Ghost j" they have *' taken {Measure in 
^infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecu- 
"^^tions, in distresses for Christ's sake;" they *^have 
^ taken joyfully the spoiling of their goods;** they 
have apprcMtched the flames with rapture ; they havp 
loved and longed for "His appearing." But wheie 
are you \ always in - darkness and alarms ; always 
among thorns and briars \ always luurmuring s|nd com- 
plaining ; having religion enough to make you misera* 
ble, but not enough to make you happy. Do you be-* 
long to* the same community? Have you the same 
|srivileges with theny? the same heaven with them? 


the same Gad with thepi?. t}i€^ ^am^ Cooiforter with 
tiiem? . What should we think of all the lugh. praises 
of religion, if it had no more consolation and pleasure* 
tQ afford than you possess ? Thus whether we exam- 
ine your knowledge, or your holiness, or your privi- 
leges^ it will appear that much lies still before you ; 
much to understand ; much to perform j much to en- 
joy. Week after week, year ajfter year, God comes 
to observe your progress, and finds you, if not drawn 
back, fixed in the puce you occupied before. 

Part II. And wfience is this ? Why ^11 you suffer 
all this renisuning region to be unpossessed ? How shall 
I awaken you from your n^glig^ce, and convince you 
tif the PROPRIETY and NECESsiTY of makiDg fresh 


Tirst, I would drop before yoU the comma^ids of 
God. You are forbidden to drkw back ; you are for- 
bidden to be stationary ; something more is necessary 
than* languid, partial, occasion^, temporary progres- 
sion; you are requii'ed td be "stedfast, unmoveable, 
'** always abounding in the work of the Lord :" to 
** add to your faith, virtue ; and to virtue, knowledge ; 
** and to knowledge, temperance; and to temperance* 
•* patience; and to patience, godliness; and to godli- 
^ ness, brotherly kindness ; and to brotherly kindness, 
** charity ;'* to " walk worthy of the Lord unto all 
** weH pleasing, being fruitful in every good work •/' 
to ** grow in grace, and in the knowledge pf our Lord 
•* and Saviour/* Such is the morality of the gospel, 
and these 'are the commands olF God, which you have 
professed to inake the rule of your anions. 

S». X.3 On Tfogress in Rel^ion, «! 

Secondfjr, ' X would surround you with aSl the imt ' 
^OES employed by the sacred writers, when they would 
4escribe the nature of a religious life. For which of 
them does not imj^y progress, and remind us of the 
importance of undiminished ardour and unceasing ex* * 
eriion ? Is it ** the shining light I" This ** shines 
"more and more unto the perfeft day.". Is it the 
growing grain i Behold ^^ first the blade, then the -ear, 
after that the fufl corn in the ear.'' Is k the mus- 
tard-seed f What though its beginning be small, 
^^ when it is grown^ it is the greatest among herbs, -and * 
" becometh a tree ; so that the birds of the air ' 
" come and lodge in the branches thereof/' Is it leav^ 
en ? It pervades " the meal, till the whole be leav- 
^^ ened." Is the christian a scholar ; and is he only to ' 
T^tvxk wl^t he hjis already tc^nired;? Is be i unntug a 
race ; and in the middle of his course jdo^ he ait down * 
tQ rest, pr st^ aside to gather flowery I Is he a warr^ 
• or ; j^d does I^e sleep not only in the field, bi^t cv^i} 
in the a&ioni 

. Thirdly, I would call forth examples in yow 
presence. They teach you the same truth — Who said, 
*^ I beseech tl^ee, shew me thy glory ?" A man, who 
had " s^en God fjice, to f4ce." Who prayed, " teach 
me thy statutes :"• " open thou ijpine eyes, that ^ 
I may behold wondrous thipg^ out of thy law ?*' A 
man, who had " moje understanding than" all his 
•* teachers ;" a man, wjio " understood ipore thaa th^ 
?« ancients." It is needles^ to multiply instances. Per- 
haps no m^ti ever carried Religion to higlier degrees ; 
perhaps no Individual h^ ever so much reason to he : 
satisfied with his proficiency as the apostle Paul ; b\;kt 
hear his language to the Philippiajis ; "Brethr^, f 

^/fidfont; fi4t mysvlf to ktifeepprfteiidfMi :: fmt this om 
^ ijung I dQ, forgetting tliose thu^ wMck tie MUod'' 
A»d what things, to use the ^r4» of an adinmd 
preachoTf had l^e to forget } Th« churches J)e hdd «t 
tabfi8he4f fhe Si^moos lie ^ {reach^ ; liis, pcaTers 
sind epistles \ journeys and peois } unexan]ple4 lahqum ; 
d^e ibtti^dance of hi3 revel^ons^ his entering the thin|: 
h^iyen, aU this, saya he, ^f )s behind ;'^ all this I deei^, 
unworthy ttf ]:ecolle^on, compared wiih the future. 
I jam reaching forth unto *< those tilings ^ich are be- 
^^ fore y I firciss towacd the i9i(rk, foe Uie ficize o£ my 
<<h^b caUiBg of Go4 in Christ Jesas.'* And have 
yre ^^ s^:talned ;*' ve we ^^ already perfed f * And shall 
Dre leave off to make advances } ^aH we be satisfied 
with our trifling aoquisitiona? • 

: Fourthly, I wouki hc>ld up to flew the advanta«> 
PBS of prog^resdye religiM* 

* A chnetiitn shouH be $:oiicerned for the honour of 
ISodf he is under infinite obligations to ^shew forth 
^* the praises of Him, who hath called us out of dark* 
^*Mss into his marv^qus fight 9" but ^herein i^' our 
^ Father glorified, that ye be^ much fruit."^ 

A ' chtistian should be concerned for the welfare df 
hb feUow^'Creatures. He should be ft blessing to his 
fttnily, to his oomitry. He shoulcl be as •* a dew from 
*• the Loird," fertilising the glace ip whigh he BveS. 
Vk should have a stock, not only su^cient to sustain 
himseif, but to relieve others. He should be a stream, 
at which the thirsty may drink ; a shadow,* under which 
fhe weary may refresh themselves ; he should be the 
image of his Lord and Saviour, going about doing good, 
casting out unclean spirits, opening the eyes of thcf 

bl&Q4 kimttiig^ lip t^ Imohm^kKuttd. l^ih»mtn 
pm» h^ possesses, the more quaSfied viH. be he&f 
we6iliieBS$ the more witt he be disposed and enabled 

A christian sfaonld be cpncern^itl ibr his own prosper* 
ity ; and h^ he to learn wherein it consists ? Need he 
tie told, that adding grace tQ grace, is adding ^ strength 
•^to strength,** dignity to dignity, beauty to bes^uty, 
joy iojoy f It is wit^ the christian, as it is with the man' 
in trade ; the more ke acquires, the more he is enabled 
to gsqn ; every increase is not only a possession, but 4 
capaaty. ^* Tq him that hath, ^hall be given, smd he 
^ shall have more abundantly { but from him that hath 
f ^ not^ shall be talcen away, even that which he seemeth 
«< to have." The n^ore sin is niortified in ns, the less 
wffl the ^ prince of this wbrld find*' to encourage hit 
approach'} the less ^sceptible shall lye be of tempttddn 
in the scenes of danger through which "vf e pass, lliere 
U somethings very ^ttrafitive and pleafing in progress* 
it is agreeable to observe a fiat^y edifice riling up 
&om the deep bafis, and becoming ^ beai](tiful mansion. 
}t is entertaining to see the rough p^tline of a {HAifre^ 
filled and finiflie^. It is firiking in the garden, to be- 
hold the tree renewing signs of life ; to mark the ex- 
panding fofifl^e, the opening bud, the, lovely blossom^ 
the sw^ng, colouring, ripening fhut. And where 
IS the father. Where vs the mother, \i^ho has not spanrk- 
led with delight, yfWie (cintemplatiii^ the child growv 
ing in ibture ; acquiring by degrees the use of its ten- 
der limbs } beginning to totter, and then to walk more 
i^rmly ; the pointing finger succeeded by the prattfing 
tongue y curiosity awakened^ reason dawniog $ new 

41 4< On FrggfM in ftefigion. ' []S£li.'9C#. . 

powers opening ; the ckarader forming. But nothing 
18 to be compared with the progress of ^ this building - 
*f fif God ;" these " trees of righteousness ;" this 
^^ changing into his image from glory to glory ;" thi« , 
process of ^* the new creature" fron^ the hour of re* 
g^nei^t^on ^^ unto a perfeiS: man, unto the measure of 
« the Mature of the fiiUnefe of Chrif^/* And, O what 
is it when we are the subjeds tqo I The nearer we live 
Cp heaven, the n]iore of its pure, and peacefi^ 1 influence 
we fliall enjoy. The way of life, narrow tt the en- 
trance, widens as i^e proceed) It is the nature of 

* ^ _ 

habi|Ls to render their a£b easy and delightfuL There 
is littie pleasure In religion, if there be no fervency j . 
if there be no vigour in faith, no zeal in devotion, np 
life in duty, religion is without a sopl ; it is^ the merer 
carcass of inanimate virtue. What ^ensation^ of ec« . 
ftacy, what prospedls of assurance, can such chriftians 
expeft ? In converfion, as in the alteration of an old 
edifice, we firft (Jemolifli, ^nd this only furnilhes us 
with rubbifli and ruings ; but afterwards,* we raise up 
an orderly beautiful building, in which we ace refrefh- 
ed and charmed. What ^n happinefs arises from dif- 
fipulties overcome, and ^rom' labour crowned with 
success ! What epio^ions qin equal the joy of one^^ 
who after the painfpl battle " divides the spoil ?'* But 
what icao resemble the satisfadion of th^ chriftian, 
who on each successful ec^rtion gathers frelh ^^ glory, 
"honour, and immortality !*' The life of the a&ive 
chrifii^n \s the labour of the bee ; who all day long is 
flying firom the hive to the flower, or from the flower 
to the hive ; bi^ aU his buiinefs is confined to fragran- 
<Y9 ^nd produdive of sweats. There are naany proipr 

5£R..x.] QnFrogUiS in Re^m ai4 

16^$ made to persevarance in the divine life, afld this' I9 
one; ^Hhenihallwe know if we follow on to know, 
*^tbe Lord : his going forth is prepared as ihe.momr 
^< ing ; and he jfhall come unto us as the rain,^ 
^* latter and the former rsuin unto the earth/' This i$ 
the- way to obtain divine refrefhments and nHmifefia* 
tions; thus the Saviour we pursue, upon every pleaf* 
ing surprise we ejcpxefs will say,' ^ thou shalt ^e great** 
<< er things than these/' Some of you are nroch per*, 
plexed as to your spiritual condition ) the reason is 
obvious i Uttle things are scarcely perceptible } let your 
religion be enlarged, and it will become more obvious. 
And to close this part of our discourse, remember that 
it is an awful proof, that you have no real religion, if 
you are satisfied with what you have ; a degree of ex- 
perience hgwever small, would fiimulate ; the relifli 
would provoke the appetite ; and having ^'taftedthat 
^^the Lord is gracious,** your language would be, 
'," evermore give us this bread.'* The nearer a per- 
son in any profeflion or science approaches to perfec- 
tion, the more clearly will he perceive, and the more 
painfully will he feel his remaining imperfedions.-^ 
In nothing is this more undeniable, than in religious 

proficiency. This being the case, I am persuaded, 
chriftians, you are prepared, 

Paiit IIL To receive some admonitions with 



Rrft, Shake oflF iNDotENCE. Nothing is more in- 
jurious to our progress; and ahs ! nothing is more 
comrmon. - It has indeed been said, that sloth is a vic^ 

f lA On Prcgreii in Rdigkn. [Sftk. %^ 

Ihe^ fti<yft uniTersaUf luitiinl M tA aiatiidiid. Thef 
fiMxyfer it to be bbdily ^xerdse ; ^ more with re- 
pLtA to triental application ; but k appears mcA of ad 
Id religious pursuits^ TTpon tMs priad{de many aire 
iafiiienced in their clknce of preachers, and in their 
^idopticsi of sentiments. This makes them fonder of 
tpecuUtions, which beajr very softly upon the heart and 
)tfe, than of those truthjs which inculcate a hdy prac- 
tice. They find it eafier to hear w^kly a number of 
sermon^ than to teach their children the duties of the 
|K|;ospel, and to nuuntsdn serious devotion in their fiaim* 
ifies, and in their closets. Man loyesr indulgence ; 
lie needs a ftimuius to make him arise from the bed of 
^oth, to exert his faculdes, and to empby the means, 
of which he is possessed. And one would naturally 
fpnclude that in religion he would find it. As be ^t% 
9t ease, revelation draws back the vail, and shews him . 
the most aftonishing realities ; an eternal worid ; what- 
ever can sting- with motive, whatever can alarm with 
iSear, whatever can animate with hope ; what a 3eing^ 
to please, on whom it depends to save or to destroy ! 
what a state of misery is there to escape ! what an in- 
finite happiness to secure | Survey the prize. In seek- 
ing honour^ men sacrifice thdr peace, submit to inor* 
ti^cations, climb ascents the most slippery and hazsgr- 
dotts# To gain wealth, they rise up early, sit up bte, 
cat the bread of carefulness j a^d what beggarly, ui^ 
ntisfying advantages are all earthly things ! The ridi 
iipai|» ^ in the niidst of his sufficiency may be in straits.'* 
The conqueror .m»y be wrung with sorrow even oft 
the <lay of Ju& triumph. Now ** they run for a.cor«f 
^ niptiUe «rQWR> but we for an inc9cn}ptU3le/' Sh^ 

Sj?r. X.3' On Frogresi in Religion. ' 217 


they be zealous in trifles, and we remain cold and mo-' 
l^onless in matters of mindless im(|)prtance ? Or do you I 
imagine diligence is unnecessary ? But does not every ' 
thing Viduable require labour ? Do we ever highly es-* 
teem that which costs us nothing ? Indolence never ' 
ploughs cfT sows, therefore never reaps. It never* 
plants or primes, and therefore never gathers the cltis- ' 
ters of the grapes ; nothing ^eat was ever performed by 
it ; nothing greiatt was ever possessed by it. " The soul 
«* of the diligent* dnly ** shall be made fet.** " Win 
** and wear it." says Bishop Latimer^ " Is inscribed on 
•* the crowii of glory which fadeth not away/' Be . 
assured,' " your strength is not to sit still :" " bt* not ' 
** slothful, but followers of them who through faith" 
••^and patience inherit the promises.'' 

Secondly, Beware of diversion. Dischare your-' 
self as much as possible from superfluous cares. Dis-* 
tinguish between diligence in lawful business, and^ 
•* entangling yourselves in the affairs of this fife.". 
This sometimes arises from a multiplicity of concerns, 
and more frequently from the want of order and skill 
it! the management of them. Thus you are robbed^ 
of the temper, and the attention, and the opportuni- 
ties which devotion requires. The good old men who ' 
are gone before us, Kved as long again as you dcr in 
the same number of years i they redeemed their time ; 
they rose early; they moved by rule; they planned' 
c^ery thing ; . they would have leisure for religion ;* 
aind if time fell short, the body and the world suffered^ 
dte km $ they ;iever robbed the soul, and trifled with 
iDenuty. To avqid divetMon, yo« would do well to^ 
iie»ember tlaC'4:aligioa is the grand bunaess^of Ufe;' 

D D 

218 On Prioress in ReligioH. (&nvi. x» 

that to this you must render every thing else sub- * 
ORDINATE and SUBSERVIENT ; that you are not to 
confine your pious regards and attentions to the $ab> 
bath, or the temple ; you are to ^ walk in the fear of 
" the Lord all the day long ;" and *^ whether ye eat' 
^ 6t drink, or whatever ye do,** you are to do ** all to 
•*the glory of God*^ In his journey the traveUer" 
may pause for a moment to behokl the beauty of the 
scenery around him ; or in the evening he may " turn 
** aside to tarry for a night,** but in the morning h^ 
goes on his way ; nothing diverts him ; he thinks on- 
ly of the object for ^hich he set out. If however a 
man goes forth without an end iii view, or does not 
feel the necessity of pursuing it; if he traveb extern- 
pore, and leaves the determination of his cOtirse to ac- 
cident, he is liable to be caught with any pleasing pros-^ 
peft ; he will be ready to comply with any flattering 
invitation ; he will be driven backy or turned aside by 
every appearance of difficulty. Fix your aim, my 
brethren, and establish in your minds a convidion of 
the importance of it } then you will no longer live * 
random ; then you will have a principle which wiD 
simplify all your concerns, by giving them one conv 
mon tendency ; then you wSl have a direftor to guide 
you in every perplexing uncertainty; then you wi8' 
have a standard, by which* to decide v^hat you are to 
shun, and what you are to pursue ;. it will induce you to 
examine all with a reference to this, and to make aB 
contribute to this ; every occurrence will furnish les- 
sons and helps ; in relation to iSm we shalP judge of 
what is good or evil'; this will kee^ us* from muriklur- 
i0g when we feel things livhich) tburagk' p^ful^ urg^ 

%pL. x»3: Op Progresf in Religh9U 219 

w forward, and fropi sigUng for things which, thou^ 
pleasing, will prove an incumbrance. 

I would fvemark further, that there are not only di- 
versions FROM religion, but diversion$ in it; and of 
Ithese jalso you are to beware. Here, finding you are 
unsi^spicious of danger, the ^emy often succeeds ; for 
his end is frequently answered by things good in them* 
selves ; he is satisfied if he can draw off your attention 
from great things, and engross it with little ones ; if he 
can make you prefer opinions to practice, and contro- 
versy to devotion j if by consuming your zeal on the 
circumstantials of religion, he can render your mindli 
. cold to the essence ; if he pan bring you to lay more 
stress upon tho^e peculi^ties in which you differ, than 
prpon those all iipportant points in which you agree. 

Thirdly, Guard against despondency. There arc 
Indeed many things which, when viewef} alone, have 
a tendency to dis(:ourage the mind. We know your 
weakness, an4 we know the difficulties and dangers to 
"which you are exposed. Your progress wiU prove 
.warlike ) your possession, like the inheritance of the 
Jews^ is to be conquered— but " be courageous V 
nothing will so much animate you as holy confidence. 
To strengthen this piinciple, you have the promise of 
a &ithful God. It encourages you with an assurance 
of eventual success, and of immediate assistance. The 
advantages are as certain as they are great. The la- 
bour and tbe hope c^ the husbandman may be destroy- 
ed^-*but here are no casualities j ** he that goeth fortt 
*^ and weepeth, beapng precious seed, shall doubtless 
^^ come again with re)oicii;ig, bringing his ^heaves with 
^hinj/* The soldiejr fights uucerfainly-T-but jitere 

js DO peradventure in this warfiur#{ ,^ y«ft, in ,aU thm$ 

^.^ things we are more than conqueror? through Hini 
*' that }oved us/' How enlivening^ is the ptrsuasiou 
that we cannot be defeated in our enterprise, or disap* 
pointed in our hope ! But you want immediate help ; 
and God has engaged that you shall not advance alone ; 
ibis presence shall be with you, and his grace shall be 
suflScient fojr you. " So that you may boldly say, th^ 
" Lord is my Hplper. I will not fear." " I will gp 
** forth in the strength pf the Lord/' See however that 
ybur confidence be scrifNtural, and your reliance pro{)f 
erly placecj. And, 

Fourthly, Be afraid of presumption. ^^Even 
^^ the youths shall jfaint and be weary, and the young. 
•* men shall utterly fall j but they that ymt upon th^ 
Lord shall renew their strength, they shall inount up 
with wings as eagles^ they shall run apd not be wea-, 
* ry, and they shall walk and riot faint." Qur depend-^ 
ence upon God is absolute and universal. "In him 
" we live, and moye, and have our being." His agen- 
cy is more indispensable in spiritual things than in nat- 
ural ; sin has rendered us peculiarly weak, helpless, and 
disaffected. Witho^it Him we can do nothing; our 
progress iq religion will be in proportion to his influ- * 
pnces. We are " led by the Spirit of God ;" " we 
** live in the Spirit; vire walk in the Sj;)irit/' Be sen- 
sible of this, and as the proof of it, be much in prayw. 
Prayer is the language of dependence ; by this we call 
for succour, and by this we obtain it.* Thus " when 
** we are weak, then are we strong,'* because this sens^ • 
of our insufficiency leads us to implore the power of 
God ; and ** if we seek we shall find." Hence it fol- 





jS«»» S.3 On PHgreis in Religion. ssl 

|of«!s, tibat if we b»ve not more grace, it is because -nv 
jNray so little. IVayer increases religion by its very 
«cerdse) it naturally promotes resignation, cherishes 
hope, and strengthens futh ; our intercourse with Go<j 
wUI naturally diminish worldly impressions on the mind; 
and re^e. and elevate our powers j it will increase our 
resemblance of God, and we fhall come forth from his 
presence like l^Eoses, shining in his rays. Prayer abo is 
?ich in promise ; *' I never said to the seed of Jacob, seek 
« ye me in vain.'^ «« The Lord is nigh unto all them 
f« that call upcMi him, to all them that call upon him in 
** truth : he will fulfil the deske of them that fear him ; 
"he will ako hear their cry, and wifl save them." 
Qn these two principles prayer ranks highest among 
those institutions which we call means of grace ; and 
will be incessantly regarded by all those who. are con- 
cerned to enjoy soul-prosperity. 
• Fifthly, It would be profitable for you to « Call to 
«« remembrance the former , days," and especially to 


COURSE, h is , said of Jehosaphat, that « he walked 
*« in the first ways of ^is father David ;" it is an in- 
tnnati<vi th^t I^e was not so zealous, and so accurate in 
ln» conversation afterwards. Our Saviour tells the 
church of Ep^es^s, « I have somewhat ag^unst thee, 
« because thou hast left thy first love 3 remember 
"from whence thou art feUen, and repent, and do thy 
« FIRST works." Ah ! christians, do not your minds 
appropriate this reproach ? O how you a^unded ia 
the duties of obedience then ! O how you prized or. 
dinances ! O how you longed for the sabbath j and 
^.Qw ^ad were you « when they said, let us go tntQ 

828 On Progress iri^igiafu [Se^ wu 

^ the haaae of the Lord!*' Hcmr much o£ your tine 
was eiiE^loyed ip mecfitatioa, and prayer, and praise I 
^Xid m was deemed a privilege ! There was nothing 
like burden or ]x>ndage* How did the Uttemess of 
lep^itance make yoif loathe sin } and at what awlnl 
dtftance did you keep yourselves from its approach i 
How glorious did the Saviour appear m your deliver* 
nnce i and with what vigour did you say, ^^ Lord, I will 
f ^ follow thee whitherspever thou goeft f" Muft I ^ cry 
^ in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, thus saith the Lwd^ 
^ I remember thee, the kindness o£ thy yopth, and thf 
^^ iove of thin^ espousals, i^l^en thou wenteft alter me 
<^in the wildiemess, in a land that was not sowii«*^ 
iJas ! is it necesip^ry to lead you hack in the hiftory ^ 
yourreligion, and to de^ye froipi yourselves in formes 
yesdrs exam^es to excite you pow i To make yo9 
bliMh at a change not for the better, but fhe worse ; to 
cover you yrith confusion, by ix>mparii^ the dackiKsi 
cf your progress, with the ardours of your comm^u^e* 
ment ? 

Finally, It will not be less profitable for you tq 


ChrifiianS) *^ it is high time to awake out of sle^, for 
*• now is your salvation nearer than when ye believed J 
f*the Mght is far spent, the day is at hand.** WouM 
you slumber on the verge of heaven ? The ftream in^ 
creases as it sqiproximates the sea ; motion accelerates 
as it approaches the centre. Tou have beh€Ad dytAg 
eaintSi and have often heard them mourn that they 
had been so negligent, and that they had done so iittle 
ior God in their day and generation ; and are you re'- 
$£dvedtp S& a dying hour wifh sippiilar regrets? 

jJiR. X.] On Progress in RS^m. air* 

yoti know ihat «• the time of" youf " departtrre trasf 
^ 2t handy'' you inftantly woold arisen zod ha^ve^ youf 
^ loins girded, and your lamps binh-ibig." But thtf 
Reason t^iB Come soon, and may c6me imlnedbtely/ 
Therefore, ** whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it 
^ with thy might j for there b no work, nor device, 
^ nor knowledge, nca: wisdom in the grave, whither 
^ thou goeft.** Yes, tfiis is the only opjportunity you 
wifl halve to do good to others, and to get good for 
yourselves* Jdfliua had the day protraAed, to enable 
him to complete his vidory ; but no addition wiO be 
takde to yours ; no sim ^nH fhmd fUll while yon finilh 
yoitr course ; see ! the ihadows of the evening are 
doangin ; ^nd. ^ the night comet h, wherein no man 
*^can work." Will you always be in a condition 
wliich wiH render reprieve anxiously desiraUe ? "Wtll 
you be always praying when you apprehend the sum* 
monsl. ^ O spare me that I may recover firength be* 
•* fore I go hence and be no uiore "f* Does it require 
no more nK>rtification than you now possess, submis- 
sively and cheerfiiHy to bid farewell ib the world ? Does 
it require no more assurance ofiiope thaa you now 
frd, to pass fearlessly the dark '^ vaUey of the shadow 
^ of doith ?" Axid what a trial awaits you beyond the 
grave ! For there i$ a tribunal, before which superfi^ 
dal tears witt not be coi^dered as repentance ; a- hap^ 
py tempcyr wSV not pass for conversion ; a few dug- 
(tih endeavours will not be accepted in the room ci vi- 
tal gocfiinesss nothing will be crowned but a faith that 
** overcopws the world j'' a •« hope that purifies even' 
^ as He is pu«e ; a love that ^< conflnins .us to livef 
.^^not to ourselves,, bat to Him that cfied for us. 



On Progress in Religion^ 

Per, x,^ 

^ and rofie again ;" a patience ^' that enduretfa to the 
** end ;" a perseverance that keeps us from ** being 
•* weary in well doing." " The Lord grant that wcf 
¥ may find niercy of the Lord in that day^-^Amen. 

r i^ * 




Psalm buodv. 11. 

Fox *tnB Lord God is a sun and shield; rn£ Lord will givz 


X) AVID w^ remarkably distinguished 
by the fervency of sacred affeftions. He could say 
with propriety, ** the zeal of thy house hath eaten me 
** up." Hence his anxiety and resolution to establish 
a residence for the ark ; *' Surely I will not come into 
** the tabernacle of my house, nor go up into my bed ; 
" I will not give sleep to mine eyes, or slumber to mine 
^^ eye-lids, until I find out a place for the Lord, an 
" habitation for the niighty God of Jacob/* Hence 
his peculiar distress, when deprived of public privi- 
leges V " when I remember these tilings, I pour out my 
" soul in me ; for I had gone with the multitude, I 
" went with them to the house of God, with the voice 
" of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holy- 
" day." When by the unnatural rebellion of Absa- 
lorn he is driven from his throne, he feels the loss of - 
his palace much less than the bss of the sanftuary j and 

E E 


2S6 ' Tke Frml^es of the Rigbtemis. [fSjBjeu iit. 

^ fie<^gs of the Ipug are absorbed in the concern of 
the worshipper for the ordinances of reli^on. Infidels 
may indeed endeavour to ex{^n this, by supposing that 
David was a man pf a melancholy tyrn of mind, and 
that like other weak and gloomy persons, he sought 
relief in devotional' exercises, when he should have 
lieen engaged in forming wise counsels, and adopting, 
vigorous* measures. But let us attend to his real char- 
9£!t^. He was the hero of the age, and had immor- 
taUzed his name by numerous exploits. In him .were 
United the prowess of the soldier, and the ^11 of the 
genenl ; and a succession of the most brilliant vido^ 
tl^ had procured for him the highest confidence, as 
well as the highest honour. He was ^alified to rule 
as a judge, and to govern as a politician. To aU these 
he added the charms of poetry and music, and *^ the 
^ haiTp of the son of Jesse stfll continues to drive away 
^^ the evil spirit.** Nevertheless he passes by all these 
)Eiistin£tion3 ;' every other exercise, every other pleas- 
we, gives place to one ; in this he centers all his hap- 
^ness — ^ One thing have I desired of the Lord, that 
•* will I seek after ^^ that I may dwell in the house of 
•* the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beau- 
**ty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple. 
^ How asnis^ie are thy tabernacles, O Lord of Hosts ! 
^ Blessed are they that dweU in thine house ; they will 
"be still praising thee." "For a day in thy courts 
^^ is better than a thousand ; I had rather be a door- 
" keeper in the house of my God than to dwell in the 
•* tents of wickedness." Such was the language of his 
decided preference ; nor was k the d>ullitibn of 6n- 
thuaia^m. He speaks " the words of truth and sobw- 

$XR. XI.3 Tie Prmleges rf 4he Rightems. ^7 


ness;^' he gives s6lid reascois Sot his ptedifedion^ 
'She hou^e of God had afforded him multiplied advan« 
tages; there he had experienced divine manifestations 
and influences ; there he hoped to enjoy fresh cont' 
munion, and renewed supplies y *^ For the Lord God 
^is a Sun and SUeld; the Lord \rill give grace and 
•** glory, and no good thing witt he withhold from 
V' them that walk uprightly.'' Let us examine these 
trords in a sense thore detached and general. Let us 
contemplate " the Lord God'* we adore in the sane- 
*>tuary ; let us consider what He is— ** a sun and 
••^ SHIELD." What He gives---** grace and qi.o* 
** RY." What He withholds — ^* ho coob thing ;*• 
and whom He regards — ^'them that walk up- 

*** RIGHTLY.'* 


Fart I. U God, my brethren, speaks to man. He 
must condescend to employ hun^an language, not & 
vine. .He has done so^ and behold nature and art 
lending thoir combined powers to aid the weakness of 
jovkv apprehension. Nature furnishes us with a sun^ 
and art with a shield \ and all that is implied in these 
imager and more than all is God to his people* 

He is a " Sun/* Who can be ignorant of the glo- 
ry and importance of this luminary in the system of 
nature ; always the same ; ' dispelling the horrors of 
darkne^) maktag our day; gladdening, fertilizing 
and adorning the whole creation of God ^^Eveiy thing 
here Mow is changeable and perishing -, ^' the grass 
" withareth, the flower thereof falleth away ;" man 
himself partakes of the general instability. How many 
^ittpims has the sun beheld rising and falling ! how many 

22S Tbi Privileges of the Rigbteout. [Ss R. xi* 

generations has it seen successif e)y de&cendiiig into the 
grave ! how many new possessors have occupied yonder 
estate ! how many fresh classes of labourers have toiied 
in yonder field ! while the same sun, from the beginr 
ning, has annually called forth the produce. At this 
moment I feel the very sun which ^^^beat upon thi& 
f^ head of Jonah." While I speak;, mine eye sees the 
very same sun which shone pn ^^ the dial of Ahaz ;** 
and ^' stood still in the valley of Ajaloo;" the very 
same sun which saw pur 3ayiQur *^ g<^ng about doing 
t^ good ;'' Noah stepping forth from the ark ; Adam 
walking in the garden of Eden. It hath shone near six 
thousand years, but it is unaltered; it has been per* 
petually dispensing, its beams, but it is undiminbhM-; 
it has Uessed myriads, but it is not less ablis to cheer 
lis. Kindle a thousand lamps or fires, they will not 
enable you to discern the sun ; the sun can only be 
seen by his own light. As he discovers himself, so he 
renders every thing else visible ; by means of his rays 
the volume charms us, we hail the smiling face of 
friendship, we pursue our callings, and shun the dan- 
gers to which we are exposed. ** If any man walk 
'^ in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the 
** light of this world.*' ** The sun arisetb j'* " man go* 
'* eth forth to his work and to his labour until the 
^' evening." The illmnination of the sun is progres- 
sive. The dawn is neither clear nor dark ; night re- 
lu^ntly r&igns its sway; it struggles for a while, 
but by and by it yiekb; the shadows retire, the clouds 
disperse, the mists and fogs evaporate before the rising 
orb ; and " the shining li^ht shineth more and more 
«*nnt:o the perfed day;" and "truly the Hght is 

Ss,%^^ xu3 The PdvUeges oftb0 Righteous. fiSf 

*^ street, and a pleasant thiag it is for the eyes to befaoU 
f* the suo." Nature smHes ; the birds welcome hb 
a{»proach \ th^ lark rises up, and ^ngs as he ascends \ 
tb^'fittlelaaibs' are sportive with the sympathy ; chii. 
dr«n are eager to go abroad. How welcome is th'e 
return of the suii after the dreary hours of night, and 
the chilling w^c^ of winter ! See those poor crea- 
tves, who are blessed with it only a few months in the 
whole year ; see theni on its return, climbing to the 
tops of their frozen mountains, with longing eyes, 
^training to catch a greedy glance ! Though the sun 
)^ so immensely remote, we feel him near; what ^ 
penetration, what ^ potency is there in his rays ! how 
he warnis,' enlivens, fru£)ifie$ ! David tells us, ^ there 
^^is BOthing hid from the he^t thereof:" Moses 
speaks of" the precious things put forth by the sun.V 
i'or without his influences, vs^in would be the labour 
of the ox, and the l^ill of the hufbandman ; he pro- 
duces the lovliness of spring, and the abundance of 
^utumn. He " renews the face of the earth' j** he 
decks all nature in charms. I imagine myself abroad 
in the depth of winter ; I loo)^ around me ; a.U exhibits 
a scene of desolation ; tl^e earth is covered with snow ; 
the rivers are sealed up with ice ; the vegetable tribes 
are dead, and the tuneful dumb ; favorite walks and 
bdoved gardens, like friends in adyerfity, are aban- 
doned by their admirers ; " He s^deth abrft4d his ice 
«* like morsels, who can ftand before his cold ?" I 
ru(h in ; and after the lapse of a very few months, I 
come forth, and take a frefli survey. I am filled with 
wcmder. The ground is dressed ** in living green ; 
$hewooi^ are covered with fpjiage ^< Where the bird* 


1^ faiiiid their atfts/' and indulge tiieir sMgs ; ^< iIm 
^^ Sowers appear on the earth.-' What has tfae'ran 
been doing ? He has perfiimed the rose, he has paints 
^ the tiBUp, he has oiade ^ the vaflies to ftand thid( 
^* with corn, and the little hills to rejcnce on every 
*• Side ;" he. has made all things new/' 

And who is not reminded by all this jof One, ** who 
** is the Father of lights, with whom there is no va- 
•* riableness, or ihadow of turning ?* And He only 
can be known by his own discoveries j- " as it b writ^ 
'^ •* ten, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, nor have 

V' entered int6 the heart of man the things which God 
^ hath prepared for them that love him, Ifhxt God 
^* hath REVBALED th^m unto us by his Spirit : for the 
** Spirit searcheth all things, even the deep things of 
" God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, 
** save the spirit of a man which is in him ; even so the 
** things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of 
^ God." « God is light j" he scattered « the dark- 
^' ness which covered the earth ;** ** through the ten- 
^* der mercy gf God, the day-spring from on high 
^* hath visited us, to give light to them that sit in dark* 
^* ness, and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet 
into the way of peace." " He who commanded 
the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our 
hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the 
*' glory of God in the fece of Jesus Christ.'* He has 
opened " the eyes of our underftanding ;" subdued 
our prejudices ; fixed our attention ; and given us a 
tafie capable of relishing the sublime truths of his 
word : He " has called us out of darkness into his 
^ marvellous Kght/* Hb people are pot iirangers to 

"f- • 

htffVMS^ aad tbey deriw it all £roni tdin. Hi^' 
l»ilpwlei%&^heg^v^ tliem ^^n^oeth the lieait.'* He" 
0)pi tJbepi '^ with all jpy aad peace in believiDg.'' liisi 
^/ «of s are waya dE pleasantoess, and all'' his ^^ patha 
^l^are peace/' He lifts up ^ the light of %!% eoun- 
^tenance upon'' tbeai, aiKi thb puts ^^^bfiness tnto^ 
^ their hearts^ more than" the wicked esperieoce 
^ when their corn and wii^ increase/' If tbiey have 
s^tasons which may be called theh: njight» or their win-*^ 
ter r they are^occ^^oned by his abacince ; ^ He hides 
** hii face, arid they are troubled j," then they cry, " Q 
^ when wilt thou come unto me ?" Cold, languilhing^ 
dead before ; when He returns he brings prosperity ^ 
^ he worlss in us to witt and to do :" he enlivens eve- 
i;y duty, and aduates every grace ; quickened by hisi^ 
influences, our religion buds fcn-th \ we ^^ blossom, ak 
t]be rose," we are ^^ filled with all the fruits of righ^ 
teousness, .which are by Jesus Chrift unto the glory, 
and praise of God/' " The beauty of the Lord 
; our God is upoa usJ' £ven here the change which 
divine grace accomplifhes is truly marvellous \ but we. 
sliall." see greater things th^in these ;*f that soul will 
soon be. " jn'esented faultless before the presence of his, 
** glory with exceeding joy ;*' that body too fliall par* 
take of the renovation, " it is sown in corruption, it is 
" raised in incorn:q>tion j it is sown in di&onor, it is. 
^ raised in glory ; it is sown in weakness, it is raise4 
** in power \ it is sown a natural body, it is nused a 
" spiritual body." He will beautify the meek with 
** salvation.** Behold the sublimest image which even 
the imagination of David could, seize j but even this 
falls infinitely below the subject to which it is applied* 

««2 tii Prl^^ire^eloftheRigbmi^. [Ser* aj* 

Aftei: comideriag the magnitude of it^ body, the xi^* 
Hy of its lights the force of its infliicnce, and aU tho 
wonderful things which philosophers have told lukj 
hear our Saviour sayings ^^ He majceth his ^un to rite 
^^ on the evil and on the gopd ;". and reniemher it is- ' 
only one of his creatures, . which he made by ^^ tjie 
«< breath of his mouth ;" which he uphpl^s '' by tjbe 
^^ word of his power ;'* whose inextinguishable fires he 
fee(b; and which he comnumds with infinitely more* 
ease, ^ than you can manage the smalleft lamp ^ it is only 
one ray of his glcnry. The insufficiency of all meta- 
phor requires a variety of comparison, and hence Da- 
vid adds, 

« The Lord God is a shield.** This piece of de- j 

f ensive armour has been made t>f different materiak. | 

There have been shields of leather, of wood, erf iron, 
of brass, and some even of silver and gold. Tour 
shield, O christian, is divine. He, to whom ^* be- 
" long the shields of the earth,*' who lends the stron- 
gest all their strength, with whom " nothing is impossi- 
'* ble ;'' He is your Shield, a Shield always at hand; 
impenetrable by any weapon ; capacious, encompaseing, 
adequate ; for what part of the christian lies uncover- 
ed, unprotected ? His substance ? " Has He not made 
'^ ah hedge about him ; and about his house, and s^out « 

** all that he hath on every side ?'* His reputation ? 
^ He shall hide them in the secret of his presence from 
** the pride of man ; he shall keep them secretly in a 
•'pavilion from the strife of tongues." Hisbod^? 
" He keepeth all his bones, not one of them is bro- 
" ken." ^ His soul ? " The Lord shall preserve thee 
*' from all evil, he shsjjl .preserve thy soul.*' The de- 

9sft. XI.3 yTbe Prmkges of fbi Righieom* fS8 

'fence of oar health and of OMt estate is conditional ; 
aind is decided in subserviency to our spiritual and ev« 
erlasting welfare ; but for the safety of the soul, God 
has absoltitely engaged[ ; this ^' shall never perish/' Al« 
though the enemies that conspire to destroy it, are 
formidable and numerous, they shall all rage in vain. 
In the perfeftions, the word, the providence, the grace 
of Grod, we find ample refuge and security. O* chris- 
tian, while an apprehension of exposure, aiiid a con- 
^iousnes»of weakness, is every day pressing upon your 
mind, and urging you to draw very gloomy conchz* 
aons, remember the assurance of efFedusd assistailce 
and defence J by fsuth see God placing himself betweeint 
you and danger ; see Jehovah spreading himself all 
around for yoisr prote^on ; and fulfilling the promise, 
^ as the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the 
^*Lord is round about his people, from henceforth 
* ** even for ever." " For 1, saith the Lord, will be un- 
s *' to her a wall of fire round about, and I will be the 
** glory in the midst of her." Ah ! well ipay wisdom 
say, ^^ whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, 
*'and shall be quiet from the fear of evil." And well 
may you say, and " boldly" too, " the Lord is my 
•• Helper j I will not fear what man shall do unto me." 
^ The Lord is my Light and my Salvation, whom 
** shall I fear ? The Lord is the Strength x)f my life, of 
^< whom shall I be afraid ? Though an host should en- 


^ camp against me, my heart shall not fear y though 
** war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.** 

IL Such God is; and what does He give? 
^ Gracs and olo&y." The meaning, the impor^ 

F F 

S^sfe The Privileges rf the KigbteotU, [Sml. i^ 

tance, the dependence, the union of these ble^ings; 
deserve our attention. . . 

And what is grace ? tt is the favourite word of inspi- 
ration ; and here, as in many other parts of Scripture^ 
It intends divine assistance, and influence springing 
from the free 6vour of God. It is often expressed 
plurally .; we hear of the graces of the Holy Spirit j 
and some speak of them, as if they were so many Uttle, 
separate, conscious agents, respedtively stationed in ttcs 
soul ; whereas it is one grand agency, restoring man 
to the image and service of God*, and operating various 
ways according to the nature of the objefl; } when it 
Feg2u:ds truth, we call it faith \ a future good, hope ; 
trouble, patience ; and so of the rest. And what is 
glory ? It denotes splendour, fame, excellency display- 
ed ; and the sacred writers sLpply it by way of distinc- 
tion to the transcendatit dignity, and sublime happiness 
reserved in Heaven for the righteous. " Thou shalt 
guide me by thy counsel, and afterward receive me 
to glory.'* "I reckon that the suflferings of this 
present time are not worthy to be compared with the 
glory which shall be revealed in us.** "When he 
^ who is our life shall appear, then shall we also ap. 
•* pear with Him in glory.*' 

These Uessings are absolutely ^sential to oxur wel- 
fare ; this the christian acknowledges. From the be- 
ginning of his religious course, he has been convinced . 
of the necessity of divine grace, and his conviftioA 
grows with his days. He feels himself wholly une- 
qual to the work he has to do, the race he has to run, 
the warfare he has to accomjpUsh. Nor can he live 
upon tte grace which he has received } " his strength'* 


^R. xl\ Tbi PrmUffi $f the Ri^tfous. SS3 

puft be /^ renewed r be must receiye *^tfae continual 
%< supply of thp Spirit of Jesus Christ.'' From the 
mature of Jiis disposition he desires qaore grace ; from 
tjie nature of his condition he needs more. He wants 
grace to sustain him in his troubles. He wants jgrace 
to subdue his corruptions, and to sandify his tempers. 
He wants grace to preserve hin> " in the hour of temp- 
^' tation/* He wants grace to quicken hi$ languid 
fffedio.ns, "for Jxis soul cleaveth to the dust. He 
wants grace to enlarge his experience, to render him 
josefu] to others, to qualify him for the various offices 
and relations of life, to " hold on his way,'* to " en^ 
« dure to the end ;'* and. Oh ! what grace does he 
want, to enal^^im to say when he looks forward, 
" yea, though I w^l^ through the valley of the shad- 
" ow of death, T will fpar no eyil ; fpr thou art with 
*' me, thy rod and thy «taipf they cojtnfort me !** Re,- 
joice, O christian } from yonder throne you shall " ob.- 
** tain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." 
The " Qod of all grace'' invites you near } " ask, and 
^* ye shall receive, that your joy may be full*'—" My 
^ grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made 
" perfeft in weakness." " The l^ord will give grace ;*' 
jind thus the promise provioes for the believer while 
in this world- But he is not to live here always i this 
is only the beginning pf his existence ; before him lies 
^n opening eternity. Ant}, here the promise meets 
him with " everfasting consolation," and assures hin^ 
of " glory."* He knows that when his wanderings are 
ended, " he shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, 
•* and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven ;" that after a 
^W more psunful struggles, he shall wear "the crowm 

f 36 The Prhibges of tie Kghteout. f Sffa. «/ 

♦f of Ufc ;" that as soon as " the earthly house of thk 
f't^berna/ple 19 dissolved, he shall have a building of 
^ Gody a house not made with hands, eternal in 
f*the Jieavcns.-' Of this "glory^* we can know 
l>ut very little, till we shall hear the voice sayingy 
f* Come and see." But this circumstance wonderful- 
ly magnifies it ; for what must be implied in a felicity* 
ivhich sfirpasses all description^ all conception, and' 
which is hidden rather than ynfolded by ^ the grandjr 
imagery employed to express it. Qut we have some in* 
timations which serve to awaken our desires, to die- 
^?ate our hopes, and to solace our minds, in all the -dif-f 
ficulties of life. 1 it is a pleasing thought, that 
^ there remaineth a rqst for the pec^ t^f God f that 
f^ God shall wipe away all tears from oiir eyes ;** that 
^ there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor 
^ crying, neither shall there be any more pain j*^ that 
>ve shall ^' join the general assembly and chqrch of the; 
f < first*bqrq, whose names are written in l^e^ven ;" that 

Tlicre we shall see his face, 
And NEV£E, MEVE^ sin— 

that he will " sheiy us th^ path of life," and bring ua 
into " his presence, where there Js fullness of joy," ^d 
%o his " right hand where, there are pleasurets for ever- 

iflore." " It doth not yet appear what we shall be ; 

but THIS we l^now, that when He shsdl appear w^ 
\^ shall be like Him, fw we shall see Him as he is/' 

Jl^m ; TI\6se blessings, piay be considered in theip 
order. Grace stands before glory ; and though Go4 
gives both irrdspedive^ of any meritorious worthiQesflt 
i^n the rfdfwafs, he niifver gives glory » till %% hvk ^v« 

Sbiu xr.3 T^Prh^ys0f4beBigite(mu iftt 

en grace* We wifii this to be oteerved, because this 
generality qf peofde would' pass io the enjoyment of 
glory wkbof^t submitting to the laws of grace ; but 
such a hope^ is false and absurd. Thus stands the pur^ 
pose of God — ^ Blessed are the pure in heart, for the)e 
^ shall see God ;" f* without holiness no man sHALt 
^ see' the Lord :'' ^^ e&6ept a man be born agaip, h^ 
1* CANNOT see the kingdom of God.'* And henc£ 
you p^deive that it i^ not only forbidden, but imp(^«> 
tie. Indeed if there were no law to exclude the un» 
saactified simier from glory, he would necessarily re- 
j&atin nberaUe ; sin is hel) $ his disposition would dei^ 
troy aD the happiness of heaven ; the service and tba 
joy. would only disgust and torment the mind ; God 
cannot make us happy with l^imsetf^ till he has made 
us holy Ul^e himsdf. '^ What fellowihip hath righteous- 
<^ness with unrighteousness? and what communioii 
? hath light with darkness P 

We may observe the conne^op of these bleffings ; 
for they are inseparable ; where the Lord has given 
grace, he will cert^nly give glory. Apd therefore my 
dear hearers, the grand queftion is, whether you have 
grace? Decide this by its influence^ and effects, as 
they are marked in the Scriptures ; by loathing sin y 
by hungering and thirfting after righteousness } by ac- 
ceding to the terms of disciplcship, denying yourselves. 
taking up your cross, and following your Sayiour ; by 
your love to the ordinances, the word,* and the people 
^ God ; by your deadness to the world, and having 
your con versation'in heaven. Thus . ascertain the re- 
ality of your grace, and " rejoice, in hc^e of tlm 
*'.gtofy of God j" " being confident of this very things 

The FrivHegestf^lUj^item. . (Ssr^jeIa 

«<that He^hBd^^MS^agnd work in 701^ wSi 
f^pecformit uiscU«lie day. of Jeios Glucist/' Did I 
«ay, where th«e is grace, there will be .^qry ? I go. 
ftirther ; there is glory. « The :Spiril: of gbyy re^ 
« eth upon them." They are ** changed £0001 ,gk»r3^ 
« to gteryi" They ** rejoice with joy unspeakable,' 
•* and fuU of ^cay." ** He that beUeveth on the Son 
** of God hath everhfiing Itfe f htim tnore tbaa the' 
promise ; he has a part pi heavea r 1»« *«* " '^ «*^' 
.<« aeft of his inheritance ;» he Jias *' the fist fiuits Ai 
*< the s^t," the same in kind, thou^ not in degree»t 
with the whole harreft. Grace is glory in the bod,- 
and glory is grace matured. . Grace is the loweA de*. 
grte of ^ory, and. glory is only tlie faigheft degceepf 
grtce. This He gives, 

IIJ. And what doeig He withhold ? " No oooi^ 
•« THING." O how full aad comprehensive is die 
language of promise ! The Holy Gboft, in framing it, 
seems to anticipate all the objedions of our suspicious 
hearts. It was much to tell us, God was " a Sun and 
Shield;" but he enlarges and adds, ♦* the ^.grd will 
give grace and glory." A^^d su^rely this will suffice^ 
No, my brethren ; there is something still behind, the 
condition of " ^he life which we now live in the flefli.'* 
This frequently presses upon the mind, and perplexes 
and diflresscs the people of God j they have bodies ; 
they have families; they are commanded to " provide 
•* things honed in the sight of all men.*' Where is 
the man who never thought within lumself," if I make 
religion my chief concern, and sacrifice whatever it 
requires j fhall I not injure my temporal circumftaixt 


gia,- xi.'j the Pri'oikgds of the Rigbfeout. l»t 

** ces ?" Where is the man, whose liber|^ity was never 

cbecked, and whose confidence was never weakened 

1^ slender ibean^ of subsistence ? Where is the roan, 

#ho with increasing demands from a noinerottB ofi^ 

^ing never with annety asked, ^^ what shaB the^ eat, 

^^d wb^ shall they drink, dCnkt wher^withsd ^haS 

•'they be dothetf?* **He knoweth our frame, and 

^ remeknt^retb that we are dost :'' He stoops to our 

weaknesses ; and saves us the pain and shame of telling 

llimonr uivwortby faar^,'^ by ^viog us promises which 

eftdaaSy provide against them; ^Your heavenly 

^Eather knoweth^ that ye have se^ of adl* thew 

<* things." *^Seek ye: first the kingdom of God and 

^ his righteousness, and all these things shall be added* 

^'unto you/* ^*No good thing will he withhold 
^* from them that walk uprightly." Let us take three 

views of this extensive promise.* 

Krsc, Bdiold in it the grandeur of his possesions. 
He who engages to withhold no good thing, must have 
all good things a^ his disposal. And» lo ! ^* He is able 
^ to do for us exceeding abundantly, above all that we 
^ ask or think." ^^ Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, 
^ and the power, and the glory, and the viftory^ and 
*^ the majesty ;, for all that is in the heaven and in the 
^^ earth is tlune ; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and 
^^ thou art exalted as Head above alL Both riches 
^ and honour come o£ thee, and thou reignest over all j 
^ and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give 
strength unto all." " The silver and the gold are 
thine." " Every beast of the forest is mine, and the 
^ cattle upon a thousand hills."' " The earth is the 
^^ Lord's and the fuUness thereof, the wbsld, and they 

ikH , TJie Privii^et if the tUgikeous. t^K. xu 

** that dweS therein." And iirhat is this lower woddi 
An inconsiderable province of his etnpire-^^^ Lift np 
^ your eyes on high, and behold, who hath created 
^ these things y that bringeth out their hoflr by nutn* 
^^ her : he calleth them all by names, by the greatness 
^ of his might, for that he is ftrong in powp, not one 
^ failing." Ifis dominion is universal ; his resources 
boumUess j his possessions infinite*. Can he be popr^ 
whose Father i^ so rich ? 

Secondly, Behold in this proni!se~the wonders of 
his liberality. All earthly benefactors fhrihk froth a 
comparison with him. He ads by no ordinary rule 
of bounty, by iio human standard of benificetice; ^ as 
^ the heavens are higher thannhe earth, so are hii 
*• ways higher than your ways, and his thoughts than 
*• your thoughts." " O how great is the goodness^ 
«* which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee, 
*^- which thou hast wrought for them that truft in thee 
^ before the sons of men !** " The same Lord over all 
*• is RICH unto all that calf \ipon him." ** My God 
•* shall supply ALL your need, according to his riches 
•* in glory by Christ Jesus' —** no good thing will he 
^ withhold." 

Thirdly, Behold in this promise the wisdom of His 
dispensations. He has qualified his engagement, and 
regulated our hope, by the goodness of the things 
proposed. Instead of regretting this condition,' the 
christian rejoices in it ; it secures his happiness. Had 
God engaged to indulge him in all these things, wheth- 
er they were good for him or evil, it would have been 
a threatening, not a promise. Hq now sees the prov- 
idence of God choosing hb inheritance for him, mtn- 

it^g flll h)3 3fl^9>^ and eqtuUy desi^sing lus wcl6r# 
jKrhen it giye89..or when it withholds. For there 13 o& 
ten a great difierence between what is ple^ing^ apd 
what IS profitable* Hence the apostle teUs i»» ^* Ne ^ 
f chasteniag for the present Qeeooeth to b^ ^ous, but 
*^ grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the 
' ^ peaceable fruit of right^usness, unto them whidk 
•* are exercised thereby." And David could say, *< it 
^ is c^ooD fbr me that I have been a^cted.** If bealti^ 
If honour, if riches will be. good for us, th^y are se- 
ared; if indjigenoe, if obscurity, if sickness will eoiif 
ituce to our adv^ntage^ they wiU^ not be denied ; igm^. 
^* no good thing'' will He withhold- Of all this He it 
the infallible Judge j let us then drop not only our mur^ 
QiuHng, but our anxiety ; let«us ^' cast all our care upon 
^ Him who careth for xis j" Jet us be satisfied that ^ 
^ aU things work together for good to them that love 
^' God f and ever remember the word upon whicjii Ha* 
^s caused us to hop^ — ^^ The youi^ lions may bck 
^ aad suffer hunger ; but they that seek the liord shall 
** not want any good thino/* And,. 

' iV. . Whom does God regard in all these exceeding; 
^eat and precious promises? **them that wALit 
•* upkidKTLY^** Wh3e by this single expression^ 
DsMd' flk^s do^n th^ confidence of the presump^u- 
MS, he efncourages the hope of the real christian, who 
tinder A the imperfections which make him groans 
ktidws that liis desire is to the Lord, « ind to the re- \ 
^mi^hibran^e of his name.** For the ttarader is not"' 
fiftlesss f he hais •* not attained," he ^ is not already 
•* petfeft }•* *»btlt thitf one tHing^ he does, ^ fofgfettin^ 
*.^ '.'••-'•" '• Go 

942 the Priiuleges of the Rigbteduu ^Sbk. xL 

^ * • 

those things which are behind, and reachiag forthf 
^ unto those things which are befoce," he ^^ presses to- 
** ward the mark for the prize of liis high calling of 
'^ God in Christ Jesus^'' He is ^^ an Israelite indeed, in 
^ whotil' is no guile." ilis sincerity may be viewed 
in reference to himself \ to others \ jind to God« 

He walks uprightly with regavd lo himself ; in all Us 
dealings with his own soul he guards against sdfMiecep«i 
tion and flattery ; he dreads a false peace y h^ wishoi 
f o free his .mind from eVery txas in ' liis own favoux^ 
^nd to survey impartially his state and his chara^en 
He does not shut his eyes against the evidence of offen* 
sive truth \ nor hold back, or divert his understanding 
froih those inquiries which may issue in mortify ii^and 
pbinfiil convictions. He comes ta the light) he- sust 
peds, and examines himself; he reads, and coibparesp 
• and judges himsefiT again ;* again he mvestigates hinu 
self, and kneels, and prays, " Search me, God, and 
<« know my heart : try me, -apd know my thoughts ; 
^ and see if there be any wicked w^y in me ^ and- lead 
* me in the way everlastingir" 

He walks uprightly with regard to God. It is an 
awful coasidemtion, tha^ ^ wittr htm we havtf to do'* 
in all our reUgious exercises. In singing we profess ta 
praise him ; in prayer we profess t^ seek him; in hear- 
ing, his word we profess to obey him ; and ^ God is 
^not mocked.*^ He distingilishes between appear-^ 
anee a^ reality. And in the christian indeed, tlfere 
f s jsooiething more than pretence ; he does mX/ ^ draw 
^ ^ nigh to God with lus moutbt ,aiid iionour him wkfr 
V his.Ups, while his heart is &r froni^- Unf." He wor-^ 
ships God w '< ^fil\K md in truth/^ 'His'^xternal^Mnr-' 

1 ' 

iSan. <i.3 TiStf frUnleget of the Rigbteous. 24* 

^ce arises from inward principle. Hence he makes 
conscience 6f private duties ; he is the same ih his fam- 
fly, as in fhe temple ; h^ is the same in prosperity, as in 
aiiversicyl The rfmple and pure regard which he has 
to the wHl and the f^ixy of God, keeps him from f2»^ ' 
ttality ta reli^on ; there is no sin which he cherishes $ ' 
there' is no duty vditcb he di&fikes. He esteems afi the ' 
divine precepts ^ncerning adl things to be ri^t, ami 
he.hates amry £dse way. . 

* Jle "M^aHcB uprightly with regard to men ; Ms trans- 
a^Ons with his fellow^reatures are distinguished by. 
candour, qpenness, honesty, pun6hiality. Bm pro- 
ftssions are the sure pledges of his designs. ' What he 
pronddtts, he performs. He does not consider Us 
tongms as given him to deceive. He hat^ and ab« 
faovs lying.; He shuns adulation ; he gives not flatter- 
ing titlra to anyj He does not smSkr sin tipon his 
ne^hbonr ;/< faithful are the wounds of^ this *^ friend.'** 
Be does not abound in oermony ; it is too .de<%itful 
aa article for him to traffic with, lie is notf an aAor 
ett a stage ; he is not a rotten* sepulchre^ over whfcli ^ 
siandst a whitewashed tomb $ he is what he appe^g 
to be. 

Sf^dk b tke chara)6kr of the righteous; these are 
their privileges. ^^ For the Lord God k a son* and 
*^ shield i the Lord will give grace and glory, and ad 
^ good thing will he wkhhotd from them that walk 
^ uprightly." Hence w» learn how ekceedingly wtf 
ai» mistaken, if we view religion as unfriendly to our .* 
happiness. ^ CodKness is profitable' unto aH things,' 
M having promise of » the life that non^ is^ and o( tb%t 
^5 Tvhich.^s to come." It is the ^ qn^ tfafog w«dfe>5'' 


Slid if u^eiqake %ht df-i(,r vl)9tey^ be tjie.pruse^m 
p§l«9^ «m are ** obMrvJu^ lyi«tg vaiut}«iiy And kmak* 
^4f^ o^r own OMii'icies.'' 

tHeiicft KN tJiigii^bt** Cm the sein^ of rio» c* 
thft f^rmltY of tlMi ^qridf afibrd yim advatiti^ ttke 
time? Pisi ourthljr tUvgs tteii in their afau^dMiiey 
|)m1 » iMHiiided coD8cieii€^» msttki you under the troi|7 
Uee of ]jfity tdce awi^y the ating^ of deaths ai^d rai^e you 
^rtiQfB the dread of eternity ? Whst ha^e they <ton«' 
iof yqi aheady? Tou fai^'^e tried their eiic^; are 
|<M hafipy? Why 19^ yqu refase a ^esh proposal 
saBAtoped by the experience pf millions, and the auc- 
9m of ail Who l^^ive tri^ it ? ^^ Acquaint now thyaelf 
^fwithUini, and teat peace; thereioiy good shs^ toaici 
^naatD thee.^^ ^ Haye the workers of Ini^ty tieo( 
HlcBovledg^F' ^^^f^hts9don do ye ipepd moaejr fee' 
^Vthai which is pot bcead v atnd. yqm: hhour for that' 
^ which satie&th not f Hearkep^dUigently unfo n^ 304* 
^^ eat ye tha^ which is good, and let your soul defight 
<« itielf in fiitness.*^ *^ Incline your ear, and come unto 
^^ me f hear, and your soul shall live : ancf I will mak« 
^^an everkstm|; covenant with; you, even the sure 
•* mercies of David." 

We oong^tuhte others. ^^ AU hail, ye hi^y fa- 
^▼ouced of the Lord.'* ^^Bbppy art thciu, O brad y 
Mwho is like unto thee, O pep|de, saved by the Lord^ 
^ ^he shield of thy help, and who is the yWord of thy 
^ ea:cdlen<9^ } and thine enwttea shall be feund Hfn 
^ unto thee, and thou shalt treai^ upon their faig^ ph^ 
^ cea.'' ^ Blessed is th^ people that is in such a ca^e! 
f^^yea, happy b that pecfik whqse God Is the Lflnt^ 

f* yt9 hxn haud, Q Ged, ^ Uio^ hast a p«(^tt 

Sou SI.] Tbi Priidhps tf iher KgbMUi. Mf 

<<il{!(m earth diftingdiied by innumendbfe aiul iiiefti*' 
<^jMtMi« pghritegiir We wovM not be sstisfiediMMi 
'^kpowuig and admiring their portion ; weary of the 
^ world whkli hps yWlded U9 nothu^^.but ^ruuty «|d 
^ vexation ctf spirit^ ifre would seek our inherttanct 
f< among them that are sanded by faith that is in 
V' GtaiSt Jesus. We would take hold of the sJkirtof 


f * hloi that b a Jew^ saying, I will go wkh yon, for I 
€< ]^Ye hi^d that Qod is w^ jom. I am a compuu 
^* ioi^ of all (hem tha^t fi^ tliMy of them that l^eepthfi 
« jyecepts. I^ook thou upon me, and be ifomoiA 
^ Xi^o mQ> as thou ^eft tQ do unto those that k>v» 
^ thy pame. Remember n^^^ O Lord, wilSh the fii^ 
f* vour that thou heareft uuto thy people ; Q visit oie 
^ with, thy, salvation ; that I may see die good of t^ 
^^phosen^ that I pay rejoice in the gladness of thy mu 
f^^tioi\, that I may glory with thine isiiheritance»'* Ma^ 
God inedre usl with these ^^timents, Ameth 

* « «- A 

• » 

« • 

• * 

■ I 

» » 

*■ « 




■ k 



St. John xviL 15, 

MffT rujr tMou saoutDBsr kse^ thsm fbom rns bvil. 

THESE words were spoken by out. 
Saviour^ on a. very memorable occasion ; an *^ hour'^i 
unparralleled in the annals of time. ^' Having loyed« 
** his own which were in the world, he loved them 
^ unto the end.'' While he was with them, he had 
withheld no proof of his kindness and care. He gave 
them free access to his prese)[ice| he removed their 
doubts^ he relieved their complaints, he bore with theiv 
infirmities. Such an intercourse pf sacred friendfhip 
had endeared him to their a£fe^ons, and rendere4 
^e prosped of a separation inexpressibly painful. When 
the venerable Samuel died, ^^all the Israelites were 
^^ gathered together, and lamented him. -' When the 
amiable friend of David fpU ^' on his high place,'' the 
bleeding survivor ssud, ** I am diftresscd for thee, my 
^* brother Jonathan j very pleasant haft thou been to 
^ me ; thy Ipve to me was wonderful, passing the lov^ 

^K. XI1.3 Tie ComUtiM tf, &c $4? 

*^ of womejti,'' When EUflia beheld the refenner 
jbijah 2acendxDgj ^^ he cried, my father, my ,£itherK 
<c tJtfL.^wdeta. CKf brael, ud die horaecip^ thttyyf/^ 
The case of the^ctisciples was more peculiarly afflidive ; 
aotid /^ sorrow fi^ed their h^art^/' Our Saviour ^eras 
never deprived of self-possession ^ in every fiate he had 
the fuU command of his powers; and even in th« 
immediate view of his tremendous sufferings, he doe» 
not forget one circumft^nce which claims his atten-' 
ticm. He thinks more of his disdples than of himsdlf ; 
lie enters into their feelings ; they were to remain be^' 
hind,' poor and despised ; *^ as flieep among woltes ;'* 
as passengers in a vessel ^^ tossed by the wives/' - He* 
will riot leave them ^ cemfenless;*' On the eventog 
before. his cruafixion, and a few moments before hb 
agony, by the gate of the garden of Gethsemane, sur- 
rounded with his family, ^ he Efts up his {i^yes to 
^ heaven,** and cxxnmends them into the hands of his 
^Father and our Father, his God and our God."^' 
Do not say, my fellow cluriftians, this prayer M^for 
the apoflles ; it was for theln priAtiarily, but not exdu- 
rifely. Ifcar his * own words j " neither pray I for 
^^ these ALON^, bvtt for tAbm also which shall bs** 
•*LiEVB on me throXToh their word.*' Thus it 
Extends to all the followers of our Lord in every age,; 
in every place ; he prays for votj ; even for you ; and * 
this is his language ; ^' I pray not that thou &ouldeft 
<^ take them out of the world, but that thou ihouldeft 
^ ** keep them from the jcvil.*' 

i * From these words the following i^ftru^lions miy 

be derived. L It iff the brovince of God to 


A mofttR siTttATioR roa •tta. tuoMTicws to livb 
iitr wiL A reason/" IBL Thekb is «vit m the 

WHldH THbV may be INJtJlLED* IV. iTHk DlVmft 
V. It 18 EKCOURAOmO to fcEMEMBEfil 'THAT * OU^ 
toUD AND SAVIOUa* tRAVS fOR 6tJtt *RE8ErVa- 

L It li rntx' Mt^vftidE tfr «mi to ipaAb «s «fcr 

09 T{lS.4P0ftl;U . • » ' 

It H the obvious design of the Scripture to' biin|^ 
iSid mind into a pibus fhtihe, by indticing ils to' ac^ 
JmoNAtAga God in aO our ways ; to'appreheiid hitil in 
every occurence ; to adore Urn in the field, iis w^ as 
ki the tempk ; to hold communion with him in h!s: 
works, |i well as in his ^v^tird^^in his dispensations, a^ 
trell as in his ordinances. While our inihds are per* 
ifomd and i&GoMtpo^d by behokfing *the mass (^ hu« 
man affiurs, aad tl«e ^perpcbial ^uduatioi^s oi v^a^Wf 
iMngB i diis blessed bocd[; lend^vs' a^ttnciplef^ ^tASxSb 
when an>H«d redooes* the cxmfusimr td order,' explaitt 
Urn mystory, < ss^tisfieiaftd Calttts the tbfufar^; It^eicif- 
a na that nothing occim by chaftce^, it shews tis the 
Sfiftfeove neing supeiinlendiiig the whole, '^ seefaig the" 
^mA^ftoih the be^miing ;** « workitog Idl things afteV 
^^the counsel of his oWii wil ;*» adVandng towards 
the exeeuti^n df purposes Woithy of Mmself, * with 
•teady, majeHHc steps ; never turning asfide ; never too 
prtoipitate; nevtf tob sbw. We see divine IVov|- 
deuce fixings ^^ the bounds of oitir habitation^" and 
pMsidui^ over att t&e citcmttstttoeei' <^ otriitidi, add 

tsA. IIII.3 CbtUtiMs in the VforU* S49 

fittv deatb* lit our appointed ttitie we appear ; in tli0 
^laaes designed for us we are dropped. When we 
iave finished our course, and ended e«r work, ** hr 
<* says. Return^ . ye children of men j" and it is not in 
the power of enemies to accelerate, or of friends to re- 
tard the period of our departure. ** Is there not an 
** appointed time to man upon earth ? are not his daysf 
•* also like the days of an hirefin^ ?** ** His days ar^ 
^ determined, the numbef :of his months are with thee ; 
^ thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass/' 
^ In his hand thy breath is, and his arc all thy ways/* 
^ The righteous and the wise, and their works, ^re in 
*• Che hand of God." Does he " number the haira 
** of your head," and not the years of ypur pilgrim* 
age? Does "not a sparrow fall to the groupd with* 
•*out yoiir heavenly Father?** and are ye nqt **o^ 
•* more value thaji many sparrows ?** 

This world, we have reason to believe, was nevef 

d/ssigned fi^Uy to accomplish the purpose of God in th? 

cri^nal creation of man. It was to precede ^ nobler 

state ; and the mode of transition from ^ory to glory, 

would have been easy and delightful. Bi^t the passage 

is now become rough and dismaying. '^ By one mai) 

^ sin entered into the world, and death by sin ^^4 

^ so death hath passed upon all men^ be^cause ^I hav^ 

^^ signed.** It is not pissing to human nati^re^ tQ 

think of being *^ taken out of* these bodi^ in wbicU 

^e havp tabernacled s ^^ out oT* these hoijsei^ in phieb. 

we have lived j *** out of these circjes in ffb^Qh Vf^ 

have moved ; 5* gut of* this *^ world/' 11^ which w^ 

were born, and to which we have been so long accus* 

tomed ; to be laid hold of, and detached from all we 


f #t' The Condiikn jtf [SB|t. 3^X0 

HOW ttJJoy, by the m^sengers of " ikt ]dvtg of tem 
^ Fors ;" to be divided^ to lie down and putrefy ; to 
enter a new and untried world. But irksome as tbe 
toosideratsDn may ber ^^ christi^acannot bfuush it 
firom. his thoughts ; be endeayours eq)ecla]ly in partic* 
itlar circumstances to render it funiUar t and there are 
things which have a tendency to encourage h^^mind 
iji the oontemi^ion of it. The enenoty is disarpie^ 
of his stiag ;- While. ^^ walking through the vaUey of th# 
^ shadow of deaths*" God will be with him. The 
•vent is entirely under the controuUog influence of hi^ 
heavenly Fat her .^ How pleasing is the reflexion ^ 
<< Well y my times are in his hand. On him depend 
^ the Qccurrencea of my history, and the duration ofi 
^' «my life. He is best <jualified to judge of the scenes 
^ through which I am^ to pass, and of the manner ia 
^ Whicli I aitai to leave the world, whether it be sud* 
^' den or lingering ; by accident, or disease ;< alone, or 
^* surrouhdetr with friends j^ in youth, or in age. It is 
^' the Lord ; let him do what seemeth' him good. 
^ Have I been bereaved ef^ beloved relations, and use- 
^ ful connexions ? my sou! hath it still in remera* 
^ btance ; but were they not his ? He had a right to 
^} do what he would with his own. He came and 
^ took them away, not as 2^ thief, but as a proprietor*. 
^ He employed- in the seiztire not onfy power, but wis^ 
^ dom and kindness. What I know not now, I shall 
^ know hereafter. Etehold^ he taketh away ; who can 
^ hinder him ? Who will say utito him, what doest 
^ thou ? I was dumb, I opened not .itay mouth, be- 
^ cause tboa didst it. fie ik the rock, his work b per* 

9B£fi.. sn.j Christians in the W^rUL fil 

^ fed ; for aH his ways are judgments a God of tirutfe 

** and withotit iniquity, just and right is he/* 

■ ■, 

n. This vroRi.i> is a raopsa siruATxmi n% 


1iEA80N« It is probaUe^ that if iwr weak reason went 
allowed to speculate conceming the state of the rig^ 
ieous, it would jdonfl^ on the propdety of rai^g them 
tp the high places of the earth ; of delivering theto 
fcots^ ajl tribulation ; of withholding from them no joy^ 
^ rather, of calHng thjsm away from this region of 
fin, ifrom this vale of tears, from this mberable ^dk^ 
to ** sit doi^n M^ith Abraham, Isaac, and Jaco^ in thd 
^ kingdom of heaven." The Scripture seems to coun- 
tenance this notion. It calls, '^arise ye, and depart^ 
^ for this is not your rest ; because it is polluted ; it 
^ shall destroy you even with a sore destruftion." It 
commapds us ^^ not to be unequsdly yoked togethet 
•* with unbelijevefs :" and asks, ** what fellowship hath 
f ^ righteousness with unrighteousness ? ai>d what conw 
'^ munion hath light with darkness ? and what concord 
^* hath Christ with Belial ? or what part hath he that 
^'believeth with an infidel?'' How perfeAly has the 
Creator arranged every thing in the universe] How 
wisely has he separated the day and the night, dry 
land and sea, the various classes of beasts and birds \ 
^d wiQ he join the living and the dead? Will he 
mingle error and truths virti^e and vice^ and confound 
the pious with the wicked ? Yes ; this world so oppo- 
site to their heavenly nature, so unsuitaWe to their der 
sires, so incapable of affording them happiness, while 
ffom every quarter it wounds and vexes; forcing 



fnm tbem mwy a sigk, ^w<» »me^ ibf^lscymtem 
«<in Mesec^}'* ^'Q thut I ^^d wkigs like z 4oye| 
** for then I would fiy away, ?n4 be ^t rest j I wouM; 
*" liasten my escape fipom (he ^torm^ ffin;^ fmd i^n^ 
^ pest'— ^This in)];id is to tttaiii tliem ^itlur afier y^^M^ 
Md our Saviour li^es ii0t pr^y to (ahe xbim 9^1 
ctfit. • ; 

First, From tK^ir r^HKinlil)^ bere, tW wk^ed dSenir^ 
innumerable adyatitag^ Tmy Intte Smtances of re» 
ligion befort them^ wWch letlcourage nirliile they con* 
demii. By these th'ey learn that godliness is pradicSU ' 
Ue and profitable. Hiey see persons of the same pas^ ^ 
f&tnsj of the same age, of the same occupations wid| i' 
thenisf Ives, walking in the p^hs. of righteousness ; aiidt : 
much oftener fhan we imagine, the portion of the ti^k^ ; 
teous formki^ ^ iponi{>ari$on yfiit}\ their otm unhappy • 
circumstances, « leads them to exdaim> '^ how goodly ' 
** are thy tents, Q Jacob, and thy tabernades, O Israid'i . 
^ Let ine die the (leath of the righteous, and kt ttiy 
^ last end be like his." It is in the~ very natuitt c^ 
retigion to render christians adive in doing good* > 
They are often the mean^ of ^^ Sf^ying a soul from deaths .- 
** an4 of hiding a multitude of s^ias/^ Sometimes a 
few individuals h^ve changed the moral face of a whole . 
neighbourhood ; and thus the l^^nguage of prc^faecy 
has been realized, ^^ the wilderness ^nd t)ie .dietary - 
^^ plate dhall be made glad for them, an(l thd desert* 
** Jihall, rejpice Aid blossom as the rogp**' . > 

^The cM9:u'ders which prevail in th^ ^orld.are great.; . 
but the state of ifiociety would be &r Mfocse, not to say ^z 
intolerable, w6re the right^us to be wtchdrawiH an4 ' 
the HcentioujsniBas of simieri! to be 210 kwger ipepf!pi$ed^^ ; 

orwiinMMtiri llf their rebuke^ tiirir ^ikfflple, ntf- 
ti|Biriaflu6»M# Ttft^f ^^ ar« tlie aalt of the earth )'' 
tbejr are ^« xhe Ught <>f tM^ >vcNrki/' They are bW 
lipgl m tike llili^es^ ddie6» cKteftt^i^t tn which tliey ^ 
re|dlte« ;Thejr have frequently by thdor prayers obtai&» 
ed deUtcenriceft for those among whofn rhey live. They ' 
have ^ atood m the breach,'' smd held bade the in v»* ' 
difg Jvbdgmeali pf tha Almighty ; and ^ except the 
^^ iJtrd of Hof^ JhkI left wito us • very small remnant 
^ iw shouid ba^e been .as S^doip» aqd we should havy 
^ b^n like uato Gronniniia/' While a father sees 
hia dnldcw st^adiqf iaf ermilFed with \m foes^ he 
kfmb oDt hii arrows $ the om is ^^es^^ed ' for tht 
ai^cf the*<ith^. When God hn secui^ed his p^ifdo^ 
tte widedd beixxne the fak" mal*!!: of his indigoatioa { * 
div "viiiB df Ills wtath aUs poured dovrn ; time shall bft 
fi6 longer | the besvebs ]>s|b$ iwity whh a great no^ i 
the Mrdi4s bwmed up. 

lA^^ain $ %tae r^^stsom are taken horn christianc 
tlMRng^es. ^f We know that all rhmgs work fogetber 
fyt gMd tq tkemthat love God-'' An^ does not theif • 
elttiaMidn ih the wo^ld dJi forth every atftive, every suf^ 
feSng virtue ? Qin there be any grandeur of char- 
fu^r^ where fbere ^re no difficulties and dan^rs^ 
Can tfaeire be*^ tr|uin|^ where there is no watlkm, xn: a 
Wllt^e where ^b^re \% no enemy I When do th^ rigb* 
t^owfeel motive, to kfeep them humbk! M^heachef 
behold in the W|dced an image of themselves* When 
are they urged to gratita4e iter cUstingukhing grace f 
vlieB they ure nmindbd by einners oir what they -wert 
♦* by nature** as #eB ^ a» others.'^^ When do they ffe^ \ 
|>>9y «tkeir<ovn^asdoov libd Id er estsiei their ^beinrvelencel * 

*« ' ' The ConMon tf \%w^ x«, 

While feecfing the hungry, dothing. the naked, teachr 
ing the ignorant, and endeavouring to rescue thdr fel- 
low-creatures from perdition. Can they exerdse di- 
vine patience and forgiveness ? Yes, while they have 
an opportunity to «*' riender good for eviU* They can 
discover their holy courage .while bearing the " re^ 
^* proach of the cross/' and enduring " the defaming 
*^ of many.** Here, by the sacrifices they are called 
to make, and their readinest to ieave £ither or mother, 
son or daughter, lands or life for his sake, they demon- 
•strate the supremacy of their love to the Saviour^ 
Here, their sincerity and resolution appear unsuspidous, 
by not drawing back, or turning aside when the world 
would terrify by its frowns, or allure by its smiles. 
Here, we behold the vigour of those prindples, which 
bear sway in the minds of the godly ; in lieaven We 
fihall glc^ify God ; but heaven is not a state of trial \ 
therersin never enters ; and what b it to live indocenl 
where there is no temptation ? But to see evil pattern^; 
and not copy them ; to breathe pestilential air, and 
not inhale the infection ; to renounce our indioations/ 
and say ^* thy will be done ;'* to Kve with our convert 
nation iii heaven, when every thing conspires to bin() 
us down to earth, here the christian honours Ood, an() 
tere he gathers glory in a manner the most distin# 
gutshing, and all this is peculiar to bis residence in thS# 
worid. Let him therefore avsul himself of thp slngul^ 
opportunities his situation afibrds; and while he fei 
mains here, let him labour to. falffll the design of heavy 
0n in his continuancct, both ^h regard to Kimself 
;md others. Let him remember that all rash and tti 
ger wishes for dfeMh are iir^)roper j Aat U ni|y b^ 

C ^ 

Su. zi^l tbrirtians in f^ W^rtd. ^ 

"needful iipr b^n tQ a^ide'* longer « in thefleft;;t'r 
that .of this expedienqf, h^ muft leave Ood to judge y 
ti^t his [Measure will be discovered by the event \ that ^ 
hewill not be detained af jmoment longer than is ne« 
cessary to a$xy>mplii]i some valuable purpose ; that in^ 
fiead of indulging in impatience, it becomes him to» 
say with Job, ^ aH the days of my appointed time will: 
^ I wait untiil my chansge come^'^ The man in har* 
veft^ while bearing ^ the burden and heat of the day,-* . 
nay occasionaUy look \i^ to see where the sun is \ and. 
may console himself with the refle^on, " the evenings 
^ ihades will by and by fcotne on, and invite me to an 

^ honourable retreat i* but it does not become him to 

• • '. ' ' . 

throw down his implements^ and haften hpme,r before 
be ol^ains stkchr a* disdiar^e.* 

M chriftians are to think of living for a w^e in the 
l^orldy it jia not unreasonable for them to be affe&ed 
^th its occurrences and changi^.' Sonoe plead for a; 
kind of ^fiaraAed and sublimated devotion ; which . 
iM droHnftsiAces m which they are placed by their 
Gfeflntor render equally impra^cable and absurd.^-* 
They are o^ver to notice the afiairs of govemmeor, or 
the measures^of adminiftration ; war, or peace ; liberty,^ 
or slavey }. plenty, or solrcityf taxes, or money ^ta 
pay thdr debts ; all is to be eqiiaDy indifik^ent tor 
thtnir;: :U^ey aw t&lewe these carpal and worldly thiqg» 
to othersr-^But haye they not bodies I Have they not 
i^jnilies i Is rdigion founded on the ruins of humanity i 
When^a msax b^coni^ a dbrifiian, does he cease tohe 
^\ membep oi cbjl todety ? Allowing that he be nptk 
^e owner of the Ihip, .iMt only a passenger in it} ha*. 
1^ ntathing;^tOk awrafceO' his> CQiwern in the voytage I'li, 

lie be <mly % trlviiBep towards a bediHP deun^, b h^ 
to lie €old« that because he Is at dn iftH whlth he u soo& 
toleai^e. It should not exdte any emoticm hi hlai^ 
nrhether it be invaded by tdbbers, m eensuined by 
flames before the morning } ^^ In 4he peace therec^ y& 
^ fliaU have peace/' And are not dtrilHans to ^ prc^ 
<* tide things honeft in the sl^t of all «en T Ajte 
they to detach themselves while here from the interefts 
of their fettow-creatures ; or to *^ rejrfce with them 
^ that- do rejoice/' or *' weep with then^ that weep f' 
Is not religion variously afleded by public transadions f 
Can a chriilian for inftance be indigent to the ctuse 
of freedom, even on a pious principle ? Does not civil 
liberty necessarily include religious, and is it not ne« 
ce^ary to the exertions of ministers, and the spreadfaig 
of the go^el ? 

And, chriftians, as the worid is a ftatf oft iH which 
you are to reside for a season, refigion does not re<]pire 
you to withdraw from society, to reKnquifli sectilar 
business, to live in solitude. It more than juftifies 
your being visible, social, adave. •• Neither do men 
^ light a candle, and put it under a bufhel c bat da a 
^ candleftick ; and it giveth fight unto all that are in 

the house. Let your light so fliine before men ; 

that they may see your gc^ works, and ^orify your 
** Father which is in heaven.'' k becomes you, how- 
ever, to remember, 

lUr That thbre mm jr/^ ^i^ rmi wmsd^ r^ 
vptBfctt ro» aAm MPWUh ^^^ ^ wmcB rcir 
MAT BM tNjUMBD. M^ what b this ^ evil 2^ TheM 
iathe evil of sin, and the e«U «f arfEmsg.i k is nel the 



r^^OHiia^fier 11^9 )«t jbitf deiiy himself ^ ^^ tia&ft v 
/!^ aroflls.'' 'Ma ihe world )re skalt tiafsre tfibjujatitniiV 
v^«Be9aieid^9 they tidio ttre'^ptaEdBcuted for.rigjitaai^- 
>f hesa ;^tktt :^ ft>r < thifrs b- the kmgdftm ^ heMMfi' 
^liidtgeooe vb&^M^Q&aa we geherltly a 'SbU &Lf (iurii>te 
«*0^ the piFespe&ftty) of ^rellgiaii )^ «id> ":bjf the sjadaiest rf 
i^lthe.^outiteftaisce/ the h^ri^is mvde betted" $a<|^ 
rffiry fnone^ ttA ifrTprefcra^ to iiwnimiiy frQm-pqrroK^t. 
^|(-i»»d)6xefo]?e MORAL;e^ir€m>, whjich tve .sfeoii^;be 
IStioSC anxious preser^. /Anid <»y this yoij^r^^^ 
^fierpettaUy ei^og^^ '^hUo] ^il< t^Q world; i ^i > 

L ' Tfifif'peope 'of the rcfodd' are enetwcff .to *tQ}igi(lo* 

\Uow •p^nudtefr are fhiSr: mioifaD^ thair error^ thtilr 

v^iuimfaer, theh: ex;;impIe»:.theininQii9iiTOhli<ny jeod^^ 

ing sore their smiles^ and bow intimidatii^fg their* frdwAit 

^ i^HcSw pN^weifiiina^e chf ;£^. oE'ceosuTe,. afxdthe^loTe of 

r.pra^l 'She^ |W»gs ;pf. the ^^4 sw^: pr^udi«dW te^a 

,Mfe of gji^Un^sis. Every, sta^ioo;, eyei;y oQn^ijjiofii hid^s 

, jpnuiporaibk . tejcnpt^ion$. It h^^ bcQa ,quesXioiv?4* 

rwhethejr^ospovity i^r a4vprsUy be the most h^:^- 

rdmi9« Afflvif noec&tttejcs our, prtde^ and xui^uifishes cbo 

r>pa4uos$ ; It Jxas a .tQpdwcy .tp^jraarv; off our dftp«o4e.nfie 

from dM^^iaePTovi^ence;' it furimhes us with^stittfttts 

' £i>r/the.coDSolatiQiis of th^ gospel ;, and a^ to its du^ei^ 

jlt.multii^e^^iversitjns, e;8;cii^, >n4 bdn^ran^%. ^Ma- 

ny a man has dropped his religion . in >ic9ilB;jipg« from , a 

cottage to a mansion. ^^ They that will be rich, fall 

: « ioto'*wipWk)ny.4ini^a?n»rej ^»^¥iteriw fildish, 

. «^acd:^fam£ful lustf^ whj^ dr€^^n i9^ hi destru^Sitfa 

3^:ahdpejtdkioiK ijF^ tA«Joter||f nwa«y i^^ib^e^foot^wpf 

^fitv« erred irokn the faddiy and ptortei A^tnaelvtt. 
*^ through with many sorrows." But indigence has iu 
petlts ; hence the prayer of wisdom has always been, 
^ Give me neither povwty nor riches,- feed me with 
^ Ibod convenient fos me : lest I be full, and deny thee, 
^and say, who is the Lord? or lest I be pOdr^ and 
^ steal, and take the name of my God tti vain." Seif* 
siMe things press upon the body, and the body aftAg 
the mind. The world has the advantage of neigh- 
bOuAood and constant intercourse. It presents itself 
to the eye, the car, the touch. It corresponds with a 
party within, which excites us to welcome every pro- 
posal it brings. The world does not ask us to deny,, 
'but to please ourselves ; not to row against the curiient, 
but to sit down in ^tjt boat^ and leave it to the stream« 
"When the world kndcks, ^ the qpirit of the worltf * is 
ready to open ; auid when temptations to vanity meet 
with vain hearts, and temptations to foHy meet widi 
fi»olish hearts^ the su^ess is more than prqbable. In 
the sedu^on of mankind, the world has a marvellous 
diversity of means ; every disposition b suited with an 
objeft. If a man be not grovelling enough to be f(»nd 
of moiiey, here is honour to allure him ; if he spurn 
Mnsual gratifications, he noay pursue ^^ the knowledge 
^ u4ikh he puffeth up*" And as it is said of Joab, ^< that 
^^'iie had turned after Ad<»ii)ah, though he turned tiot 
^ after Absalom ;'' so a man who has vanqubhed one 
tainptfitio», may be ov^ercome by another, more' suit* 
able vb his ppopeasity^ and more aided by circuimlan- 
ces. O what spc»ls off tntfl^ of conidence, and of 
devotioa can the world di^fi ! In how. Bnaay has k 
lud the unhaiq;»y infiueiice.lQ cwatecaS: cwviiMii» 


asm. JUt*] Qbrbtmi A» the mtld. %59 

attd to dastny the tooct projowti^ b^n^e^ ofaa* 
rioaHiess ! Hence the apostacy of. Demsn ; ^' he loned 
^« this present worldU'^ ^ Felix trembled j" b»t *^ ^U- 
'^ liag to she52ir the Jewa a pleasure, Iqfc Paul bp^d." 
*^ Herod heard John gladly, and did many wondei^ 
^' things I** bitit the charms of a beloved Herodias ob» 
taiAed aa order ior his execution. The young man 
inquired after eternal life, and our Saviour ^loyi^il 
•* him ;•' but " he went away sorro\ffui, fiar he was 
^* very rich.*' " He also that received seed aoipoog 
*^ thorn;, is he that heareth t^e word; and the car/^ 
^^ of this world, and the deceitfulness pf nches cho^e 
. ** the word, aad it becc^neth unfruitfuL'* 4pd wh^re 
ithe world does not acqvire such a piiedpminancy ip 
Ahe soul as to be entirely subversive of religion, it tqa^ 
. prevail to such a d^ree, t^ to be very injurious to it* 
A real chrisUan may have too keen a relish for the 4l« 
Sowed indulgences of life. He may be too much 4iv^ 
to the opinion of his fi^w-worms. He may be cqq 
eager to ^' add house to house, and to join field to fiekL'' 
. He may '^load himself with thick clay," and go on 
heavily. He may '^toudi the undean thing," and 
soil ^^the fine linen which is the righteausi||M of the 
^ saints," and wear a ^' garment spotted by the 4(^«'* 
He may spread earth over his afiedions, aod damp 
their ardour. As the consequence of all this. wQitldiy 
influepce, there will be little spirituality in l^ xx>aver<> 
sation, iittle life in ordinances ; . little pleasure in drawl- 
ing near to God ; a loss of inward peace ; corrodipg 
care ; a dread of afflidion ; a thof ny dying piUow, 
He will be a stumbling block to the weak, and a di9- 
t«esi lothe »tr>oiv|j nor wiUhis reHgioa. stand fartfa 



fiOO Tbe Condition^ -^ . [St|U xii^ .^ 

prominently ;enough to be visible aftd strlkiDg ^^tq « 
^^ tbem that are without. V i 

Christians, there are two things whiqh we wish, you *•' 
f remember. The one is, that your greatest danger 
lies in things lawful j for the proposition of any thing 
apparently sinful would awaken your fears and yo\ir feats 
would secure you. " Every creature of God is good ;*^ 
but if' it be not "sanctified by the word of God and 
" prayer/* the blessing may be turned into a curse, 
and our very " table may become a snare and a trap. 
We are even bound to love our connexions ; but love . . 
may grow up into idolatry. Extremes are contigu- 
ous. The line of separation between lawful and uri- . 
lawful is a single haii". On this the enemy takes his 
station, in order, when he finds us advancing to the 
vere of permission, to draw us over, and induce us to 
transgress. ' The other is, that this evil frequently ad- 
vances by slow degrees; approaches the heart by im- 
perceptible access ; and hy specious pretensions, justi- 
fies its continuance there* It assumes a thousand flex- 
ible shapes; wears various names; passes under the* . 
notion of good-breeding, sociability, opportunities of 
usefulness; . " laying up for the children." ** With 
*' her much fair speech she causes him to yield, with 
*• the flattery of her lips she forces him ; he goeth af- 
•.* terher straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, 
**or as < fool to the correftion'of the stocks: till a 
« dart istrike through his liver, as a bird hasteth to the 
•f snare, and knoweth not that it is for his life.'* What 
is the conclutton of all tluB ? O professors of rdigion ~ 
*• love not the world, nor the things of the world*'* 
*• B« not conformed to this world/* Consider -k as 


SUi -3UI.} 

Cbrhtiim l» ^^^^lidL 



tn«nemy. Regwtfit iwith cautidn. WaBc as among 
nares. Be drcuiMpect ; be waichfel ; and if you 
^ujkl pafi through the world with safety^ ceeoUect, 

|V. That the bivine . protection k ms^nt 
TiAL to your sECXJtRiTY. The more valuable things* ? 
are, the o^pye dependant will tjbey be fpuiid. Shecfi 
f e^uire mote, qfne than wdves ; vines than bn^nbhis ; < 
^gsurden deipands more attention than a wilderne^^^, 
s|nd children are reared with far greater solicitude - 
than animal ypu^g* Nothing equals the djepeudmce ^ 
f>f the christian ; but hei^ein lie all the. spirituaLresour-. . 
^s } for w^ieii he " is veak, t^ien Jhe is sfirong.'' 
When in himself heca^idp nothing,.. he < fo^s ^ ajl- 
liaifce with Omnipote^iq^, a^d q^n, 4o ^ thin|^» 

£^ sensiblf of yqur inability to sustain and defend 
yourselves. 9riJD|g und^ your review all those» who^ 
possessing every advanta^e^ have drawn back unto peiv 
^tion. They a^dyanced far^ ^nd proraised welt ^ but 
Uke a sto^e urgped up the> side of :a hill, which, whe^ 
the. iippeUing force is ^emoyed^ rushes.. b^ck with 
greater velocity, and bounds furtbeac into the plain be- 
Iqw,; so these have entered again vsjXo the world, and 
are more distinguished by it^ vices and follies than be^ 
fore. ** Xox if after, .they have escaped the ppUutioiiB* 
^^ of the world, through the knowledge of the Lor4 ' 
^< and Saviour Jesus C^irist, they are ag^ entsCn^ed 
^' therein, and overcqpie : the latter end is worse thaa 
^ the beginning.'' 

Mai:k the Ms of. good rtlen themselves, who have 
been /' regov^ed frofu the snare of the devil." When ' 
they w§n; forth, vbut ^^ "in rke- snecgth^ofth^ * 



" • 

sat Tbf CenMM tf |St a. * m\u 

^ Lord," fkey were found Uneqtud to the ttiat, iKKi bf 

bitter experience were convinced of tbeir v^eiksMm 

"When our Saviour had informed the disdjiles, that 

^' the SSiepherd would be sodtten, and the sheep scat- 

<* tered abrbad ; Peter said, ^ though all men riiould 

^ be oifended because of thee, I y^^Wi never be of- 

^ fended.'* When our LcMrd gave him the ptemoril- 

<3on ^^ before the cede crow twice, thou shak deny me 

^ thrice ; he exclaimed '^ though I should d&e with 

** thee, yet will I not deny thee/* He was sincere, 

4)Ut self-confident ; and what was the consequence i 

His resolution (ailed him ; and he denied his Lord 

with ^ oaths and curaes/' Wogh well the languas^e 

ef One, who knows what is in man, and who has said 

^^ withoilt me you can do nothing : compare your eae- 

fxrience with it ; and painful as it will be, call to your 

^^membrance the numerous variations, instabihtiea^ 

^declensions, backsfidings of your lives. 

Be equally persuaded also, that the diving power is 
as adequate, as it is necessary to your preservation. 
** Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the 
*^ young men shall utterly falL But they that wait 
*^ upon the Lord shall renew their strength ; they shall 
^* mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and 
« not be weary, and they shall walk and* not faint.'* 
It is his character, and his prerogative ; " he is able to 
** keep you from falling, and to present you faukless 
** before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy.** 
He preserved Abijah in the wicked family of* Jerobo- 
am. He secured ** saints even in Caesar's househcAd." 
Behold yonder illustrious ** multitude standing before 
*< the throng with pilms in their hands.'- ToW of 


CMnimtM OitWitldi 


ffj^dM QHtbeir wayand to^mm/antmgKt -mm} rtrap"^ 

^ttqc^aiod l<i|p9d o^er a HEaUf-' b^ him tlief << trod 
1! OAi^lMtt 9tid adder, t!ie^Qui^lk«i.a]id iWdi^^ 
^fNiilitoej tiai^^ wuter £tet$^ and H^ is ^ 6a«^ 

<^ I& ear beavy that it oanooft h^XfJ* ^^ The Lord r^ 
^.<ifiM»eth tliie3Gid.Q£ hi^^^^rv^s : wA acme of them 

H tjpat tnistiniiim sl»» be 4ff#li^'' 

A»the d^ilie prdbeeHon is scMssary, suid adeipiate* g^ 
aDyour defence^ so it is sMiirakie^^zaA tk^hmtdifi^ ^ 
sfa>ii <^ cnir subject sfae^s us haw it b to be obtaiiied~- 

„ • . » 

, 3v.P|a.4V£iu ^^Ask, aad it ^hs^U be given you.j^ 

^ seek, and ye diall fiad^ knock ai^it sl^Jl b^ op^n* 

f e4 vjAq you." I^ce the. practice of the saMQta 

fVSet a watcb, O Lord, upon my lips, keep the door 

*f of my flioutb,'* " Hold >thiOu me up, and I shall be 

** safe." " Order^ my steps in thy word : and let not 

,Any ioiquity have dominion over me.'' ^^ Uphold 

me according to thy word, that I may live ; and let 

me. not be ashamed of my hope.'' ^^ Lead us not 

<^ into temptation, but deliver us from evil." 

Christians however are sensible of the imperfgctioaa 
of their own performances. They can scarcely call 
their weak eiB^t, pfayer j " Kfce a crane, or a Ibwat 
^ km^ so did 1 chatter. Could I see an inspired rec- 
•• wrd of all my pcay^rs ; could I see as God does the 
^ mattOBC^ in wh^ I have always addressed him i the 




T iefi I iacn a4B04 amiss (usomttilneB wiiJiiiiii moBmv^i 
^ sdnifetl£tes ftMif0br'tottfirienfir/' rdEfenoe k is a fikM 
King rdief t^theil* ttindfty to tecnr tiiit ikeit^bcstfakut 
pray itdir them; ^liait God i^ d^ ^i&^iritig ifrota rlip^ 
more Ai^rdni than their ^#ii{ '^iDo good^^ O LDffl;^»iii»/ 
f'tb^ those tBiit b€< good!, wd te^ thiM cl|ait uekupdgliir 
f^^ih th^i^%ekrtsr--^'lidit'^thoseiikat saak lUe^na 
^joice ahd be^ gkd Id tliee«jnef stfdh » lota thy v^alvafi 
••tidn/sJfy cOntiniwiB^/ithe* Lford be flflaghifi^.V 1} 
fcy dJarafter hert descflbtti'* Hg^ pteit^hg is It ^W 
fefleift, that I am pectifiafly irrteresterf* ik tfce ^lailyf Sa^ 
^^pHcattohs of sdVtbe'pbo^Ie of 66d$ and thaft ^<4h^?elL 
^IINffeftual ferrent/ifrayer'of a rigSteotts man a^^Mfh^ 
•^Tiiuch!"- • • "•* -"'v ^•' "'• ''':;.-:. ". . /> 

^ But their chief cOnsaiMod is deViv»d fr oA'a^M^-fer^ 
source.' ' •* And atibthdr' anjafel cstaie idid -rtBod- at 'thU 
^ ditir, having a gdUleR censer ; and theiie -MriJ^ ^P^^ 
*^ unto hi te much ?ncefrfe > • that 4^ Arould ' cflfelr It wfefi 
* the prayers of- all-faints u|>on the golden altai^^ -vJkiib 
** was before the thronA ' And the fifmiAei of'theirti 
•^<:ertie irHchofrae Mrtth^lfhe pi^ayerB of th^' dainty ^ai^ 
^cended\up befoi^ Ood^, oM-of the ailg^-hatidf 
7hu» JeAi» perfvmes and preTents 'cmr: iesvicts*; ?thus 
he obtains -ibr our ^itq^catiqipis atidifetee and zcitf^ 
lance/ i;^ether> the Inter^^oa tof ioar Hi^ 
ih heiVlwi %e verbal^v or me^sd onJf^.itis.^not oeaffif* 
ty for %i& to;dHerffilne. .We^knowii is realf.sii^ 
teiocr^that^^he^ ^^peturi^.i^ ah^ fttffeacei o£/6<9dldi: 
•* us ;" we know that having been " reconciledvtQ^^ 
^^dJ^a*lu7 f'^jm^be^{^9^M <UP*%i" M.that 
ttihe>jai|b:iilaa tD.5a^e tblM».il9 Cihft Bf^^WH^iic^^i^ 

StX. xiu} CbrUiiMs in tie W&rld. ii6S 

^ cooie Hatcl God bjr him, seeing he ever liveth to' 
^make iiitei^ajilpicm for &em/' It may be necessary 
however to caution you, not to mistake the nattirst 
and design of hb intercession* It is not to infbrn^ 
God, as tf he were ignoranty to remind him, as if hsi 
were forgetful ; or to persuade him, as if he were un^ 
kind. The appointit|^nt is entird]r his own ; it sprang 
from his mercy, and exemplifies his wisdom. What 
a view does it give us of the majesty and holiness, o^ 
God, that he will not suffer' us to approach him with-» 
out a Mediator! How powerfulfy does it remind u% 
of our unworthiness and vileness ! How loudly does 
it preach to us reverence and humility! What be* 
OHnes of self-righteousness, if we can bring nothing 
deserving the divine regards ; if our best duties need 
for^vehess, father . than recompense : if '^ the iniquity 
^ of our most holy things'^' would be sufficient to de^ 
stroy all our confidence ? But, O how it meets the 
fears of the returning sinner, and the discouragements 
of the deje^ed saint ! ** We have boldness and access 
^^ with confidence by the faith of Him/' If this dis« 
pensation wie^e not designedly typified, it is beautiful- 
ly illustrated in the address of God ^^'to Eliphaz, and 
*^ his two frienab.'* ** You have not spoken of m^ 
^ the thing that is right ; therefore take unto you 
** now seven bullocks, and seven ram's, and go to my 
^ servant iob, and offer up for yourselves a burnt of* 
^ fering ; and my servant J'ob shall pray for yoti, for 
^ him will I accept ; lest I deal with you after your 

We conclude by observing, what a view this gives 
^ of our Lord and Saviour. W^ an infinitely im- 

K K 

2:66 The Condtiion ef [Seu. krf. 

portant station does he bcciipy ! t^liat an understand- 
ing must he poffess, to be accursttdy )nj[iialnted vnxit 
the diversified circumstances and necessities of all the 
Redeemed! How unparalleled fe that love, which 
tiAows no variableness, which renders him not Only m 
his lowest abasement, but in his' h^hest dignity, the 
friend of sinners; and which induces Ifim, while stir- 
rounded by all the adorations of heaven, to listeh t6 
the complaints and petitions of each of his people up« 
on earth ; said nevei; suffers him for one moment to- 
remit the kindbess of his attentions ! 

Again, whsrt a representation does the subjed give* 
lis of the happiness of believers! Though their Sa- 
Tiour be ^ passed info the heavens,^* they know that 
he has not dropped his concern for them ; they know 
that they **have not aj* High Priest, who cannot be 
** touched vrfth t!i^ feeling of their infirmities.*'' What 
is the inference? " Let Ms therefore come boldly ta 
^^ the throng of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and 
^. find grace to help in time of need.'* •* Having such 
** an KQgh Priest over the house of God, let us draw 
^ near in full afiurance of faith.-' Let us contem- 
plate our glorious Interceflbr. Let us remember the 
dignity of his nature ; he " is the brightness of the 
*' Father's glory, and the exprefe image of his per- 
" son." Let us remember the dearnefs of his char- 
after; *«This," fays the Father, is my beloved Son 
" in whom I wm well pleafed.** " Alk of nfe, and I 
<( shall give thee the heathen for thine iiaheritance, and 
<^ the uttermoft parts of the earth for thy pofleffion/ 
Let us remember the value of his atonement \ he is 
more than an intercessor, he is ^ an advocate with the 

{gpjL, xiul CbristumsintbeWoriJL jg;^ 

**Fathei:i'*."he is t^« prppidation for our fins.*" H? 
jCQuH/ay, " I .hav€ glorified thee on the earth ; I hav^ 
«. finifhed the work which thou haft given me to do irn^ 
" jjowj Fatherj, glorif;^ nie,'* " He entered I^^veriipth 
:" his ovfVi blood, heaving obtained etef nal jredemptic© 
*< for ua." His fuff^prings and death, hfs otjedience and 
xightepjiliie^,, aU pte*d our caufej he a(ks nothing 
.whifh God ha4 i>ot fuspended on a condition whi(^ 
he had ahready performed. And in consequence of 
^ this, let us remember the certainty of his success ; 
^* I know that thou bearest me ahvaysJ' Come then^ 
christians, and ^ rejoice with joy unspeakable and fiill 
^* of glory." You. have a Friend in court ; an elder 
Brother in the palace of the King of Kings. In his 
;aIl*preVaiIing name you may approach; and while 
bluslung over your poor services, you may be assured 
that your prayers will be heard^ that your strength 
shall be equal to your day^ that your grace shall be 
crowned with glory, and that ^^ no good thing shall be 
** withholden from you,'* While Zechariah was burn- • 
ing incense within, all the people were prayipg with- 
out. O pleasing emblem of christians, and of '^ the 
" High Priest of their profession !" While you are 
praying in the outer court of this world, he is '^ with- 
•*in the vail" with the cepser, and "the blood of 
*^ sprinkling !*' It was the happiness of the Israelites 
while fighting in the plain below, to look up and see 
Moses pleading with God for them on the hQl ; be not 
dismayed, ye seed of Jacob. **Who shall lay any 
•* thing to the charge of God*s eleft ? It Is God that 
'^ justifieth : who is he that condemneth ? It is Christ 
" that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even 



[Sbr. xUf 

^ at the right hand of Gqd^ who aUb QUfketh inters 
. ccffion lor us* * "jNayj ' » * in x]i6fis CHCW ^lOfss w^ ^at^ 
« lye than conquerors throug^h him that loved us. 
f< nr I am periiiaded;^!!*! qeither doatb^ nor life, nor 
^ angels, nor prindpalities, nor powers, nor thin^ 
^ present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, 
^* nor any other creature, shall be able to separate ut 
** from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our 
« LGrd." 




SERMON 3^111. 


Numbers 3d. 31, S4. 

^fyd iberi toeni firtb a xoind from the Lord^ and hnugbt 
quails from tie sea^ and let ibem fall by tbe camp^ as H 
were a dafs journey on tbis side^ and as it nvere a dafs 
journey on tbe otber side^ round about tb^ Qampj a^d as it 
tufre two cubits bigb upon tbe face rf tbe eartb. A^d 
tbe people stood up all tbat d^y^ and all tbat nigbi; and 
all tbe next day^ and tbey gatbe^yd tbe quails : be tbat 
gatbered least gatbered r<it bomers ; and tbey spread tbem 
all abroad for tbemselvesy round about tbe (amp. An4 
wbile tbe fiasb was yet between tbeir teetby ere it was 
ebewed^ tbe wratb of tbe Lord was 'kindled (Against tbe 
^ople ; and tbe Lord smote tbe people wtib a very gr^at 
plague* And be called tbe name of tbat place Kibrotb^bat' 
taavab :. because there tbey burifd th p^opl^ tbat lusted. 

YY i^ one design of the sacred Scrip- 
turea to make ^^ ^in appear exceeding sinful/' Some- 
times they place the evil before us in its essential de« 
^D^ity and vileness. At other times they surround it 
^tl^ *^ the tf rrprs of the Almighty,'' drawn i^om those 


970 Com^ceue Pmifbed. {[S&a. %nu 

/dreaijfiil threatenings which juftify 9U our fears. To 
^cwjBrm these declarations, .«a4 iUiu|;i9^e 


we have also given us nua;ierou3 examples in which 
we see the paajign^ty of sin realized. , ^ Let jqo n^ao 
say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God : fqr 
^ God cannot be tempted with e?dl, neither tempteth 
he any man ; but every man is tempted ^hen he if 
dra^jvn away of his lust and enticed^ Then whq^ 
<< lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin, and 09 
f < when it is finished, VriagiKth forth de^th.*' 

The event which is to engagjs our present attentioa 
is. singularly awful* We do aot "fender thai Qai 
y^ho esteems the prayer of the wiclxd an abqniiaal^oii^ 
shoidd refuse their unreasonable cry i but wbta we see 
him working a miracle to gratify their wishes, ^nd mar 
Idng his bounty the me^ns of their destructiiMi, ^sfe aif 
compelled to exclaim, ^^ how uiisearchaU^ ^se his 
^judgements, and ^ ways are past finding out|** 

The braefites h^ been for some time pretepiiatvrai- 
iy fed with ipanna. At length they despise k, and in- 
fluenced by the multitude of stranger^ thgt was juong 
them, fall a lusting. They wept again and said, 
^WhoshaU ^ve us flesh to eat? We remember tte 
^ fish which we did eat in Egypt freely ; the cucua^n 
<*and themdons, the leeks, and the onibas, and the 
^garlick: but now our soul is dried away: therein 
^ nothing at all besides this ipanna before our eyes.^' 
The Lord hearkened and heard* He promised to 10- 
4ulge them : and behold the dreadful accompUshment 
of his word. " And there went forth a wind frofn 
^ the Lord, and brought quails from the sea, aijd let 
^ thena £s|U by the camp^ as it were a day's journey 

^ on ^ii^ iide^ a^d as It 'Wea a dtejr's jburney on the 
«* otlii^r dide, toumd aboat the^catnp, and as it were twc^ 
^ cubi^ high upon the lafce of the earth. And thB 
^ j)ecii^* ftood ^ all that dairy, and ^ that h^fat^ 
* anid sffl tb^ next day, and they gathered the quails : 
^ lie tliat gathered teaft gathered ten fabmers ; and 
^ they sjAread them all abroad ^r theniselves round 
^ about the camp. And while the ftesh Was yet be- 
^ tweeb their teeth, ere it was chewed^ t^ wrath 6{ 
^ the Lord Was idndled agunft the people ; and the 
•Lord smote the people with a very great plague«^ 
^ And he cafled the name of that phce Kibroth-hat- 
^taatvah: 1)eicMse there they buried the peofde that 
^ lufted.*' But, alas ! though the fathers were burfe^ 
tAj thefa: ch^Sdren survived > and there are otany among 
Chrif&ans nbw, as well as among the Jews of dki, up^ 
on wh^e tombs CtBRioTH-HATTAAVAir may be in- 
scribed, with k trandatfc^ under, *tHB Graves or 
Lusts. Let us approach these sepulcres and rec^ve 

' L LBT us RElftAftK TH£ POWER AMD D0MIKX01<r 

0f Qovt* Kvery elenoent, every creature is subjed ta 
kisiHKhorityy and yields tq hisccmtru^. He holds 
^^ the wijid In his fift ;'' he dete? minef the quarter 
from which it blqws ; the tiaie of ks rising and of it» 
*fiyiing } the degree of its influenqe ;- the quality of it» 
tffo&s. *< livery laving thmg*' fian4s before him, and 
sninifters unto him ; he says tp one, ^^ Go, .and he go* 
^*eth ; to aqother, come^ and he co.meth/' Hespeaks, 
aflid the fowls c^ the air, and the beafts of the field 
repair to Ad^m for Raines,, to Koal^ for iheken Ha» 

t72 ContupUunce Punisbid. {SziL xiiU 

He enemies ? Where can the/ hide ? How caa they 
escape ? Every place is a maganne of arms.; every 
being becomes an executioner, from an ^vLgA to a £ty. 
Has He friend^? He can nevier want inftruments to 
defiver or relieve tbem^ A fiih supplies Peter' with! 
the sacred tribute. . Lions refuse to tottch Daniel/ 
livens feed Eiyah* . He nods, and the sea divides, 
the rock pours out water, manna drops Irpmthe 
douds. *^'And th^e went forth a wind from t3ie 
^ Lord^ and brought .quails from th^ Sea, and let them 
^ fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on thisr 
f* side, and sto it were a day's joume/ on the other side^ 
^ round about the camp ; and as it were abouTtwo cu- 
<c Ints high upon the face of the earth/' The Israel* 
ttes were unbeUeidi^ ; they queftioned his ability to 
supply them ; they said, *' Can God fumifh a table m 
^^ the wildem^s ? Behold He smote the rock, and the 
^ waters gushed put* and the ftreams overflowed ; can 
<^ He give bread ilso, can he provide fleih for his peo-^ 
^ pie ? Even Moses flaggered through unbelief.— 
^ The people among whom I am, are six hundred 
^'* thousand footmen } and thou haft said; I will give 
^ them flefh that they may eat a whole month. Shalt 
*^ the flocks and herds be slain for them to suffice 
^* them ? or fhall all the fifh in the sea be gathered 
•* together for them to suffice them ? And the Lord 
" said unto Moses,' is the Lord's hand ws&ed* flfort ? 
*' Thou flialt see nosfr whether my word fhall come to 
.«* pass unto thee or not." Chrifkian, why doft thbu 
limit " the Holy One of Israel Y* Why ddes thy cOiii 
fidence tremble when difficulties multiply, arid ordfc 
nary means of " relief foil thee ! * ** Haft ' thou riot 

•* known ? Etast thciu hot Heard, ttet the everlasting 
" (Godj, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earthy 
•^ftiintefh not, neithef is weary T* Behold in Him 
|(?hose yon are ind wh'om you serve, boundless resour- 
fces at the command of friendly sympathy and fatherly 
cafe. "To Him belong fhe issues froiri death.'* 
^•The silver and! the gold are h!s." "His are. the 
« cattle upon a thousand hifls.'V "I'he earth is the 
" Lord's, and the fullness thereof, the world arid they 
" that dwell therein.*' " O fear the Lord, ye his 
** saints, for there Is no want to them that fear hiqi : 
" the young lions may lack and suffer lounger, but 
" they that seek £he Lord shall not want any good^ 
" thing.'' 

I II. S'ee how much more diligent men are Ilf 


0NTO EVERLASTING LIFE. "And the peoplc Stood 
^^ up all that day, and all that night, and all the nexf 
^^ day and g2(thered the quails : he that gathered least 
"gathered ten homers i and they spread them alf 
** abroad for tliemselves round about the camp." 
What eagerness, what assiduity, what perseverance^ 
what sacrifices of ease, and even of sleep do we here 
discover ! " This is our opportunity ; this may not 
•* continue ; this may lievef return." ** The children 
" of this world are wiser in their generation than the 
" children of light." The wants of nature are press- 
ing, and knock till they are relieved; but spiritual 
necessities are either unknown, or disregarded. When 

(he body is in danQ:er, we are alarmed, and instantty 

L l' • 


S74 Concupistence Punished. ^Ser^ Xrlit* 

inquire for means of safety ; but inattentive to the ex^ 
posure of the soul, who asks for the *' Balm of Gfle* 
" ad ? for the Physician there ?" We are quick-sight- 
ed in the affairs of time ; but, O what stupidity blinds^ 
us as to the concerns of eternity ; if there be a pros- 
peft of improving our secular advantage, we need na 
arguments ; a hint excites us ; we are awake ; we rise 
early, sit up late, eat the bread of carefulness ; we^ 
form our plans ; we lay hold of every accidental as- 
sistance ; we compass sea and land. But when we are 
to obtain "the honour that cometh from God," to- 
grun a seat *• in heavenly places," to secure " the true 
** riches," we are all torpor and forgetfuUness \ We 
need line upon line,^ precept upon precept ; sabbaths 
must be instituted to* impress us ; ministers must be 
appointed to stir up^ our minds by way of remem-, 
brance ; conscience must be deputed to live within u& 
as a constant monitor \ and after all, where is our as^ 
siduity and application ? Who sees us ** working out 
our salvation with fear and' trembling ?" " striving' 
to enter in at the strait gate?" "pressing into the' 
kingdom of God ?'' " giving all diligence to make' 
•• our calling and eledion sure ??* 

in, Persons may gather and hoard, up 


these men ; they are anxious to lay in a stock for days 
, and weeks to come \ they accordingly provide it, andr 
prepare it ; but wpuld they have been so adive, so -eager ,» 
80 grasping, .had they foreseen that they were imme- 
diately to leave their abundance, and that as soon asi 
they tasted they were to die ! But so it was ; " And 


Seh. XIII.] Concupiscence Punished. 275 

^* while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it 
^ was chewed, the wrath of the Juord was kindled 
^ against the people, and the Lord smote the people 
<* with a very great plague." By many considera^ 
tions, my Brethren, do we labour to quench your un- 
due ardours in the chace of earthly things. We have 
often laid before you the Divine prohibitions. We 
have shewn you how impossible it is " to serve God 
-" and Mammon." We have proved that " a man's 
^Mife consisteth not in the abundance of the things 
.^^.that he possesses)" that nature is satisfied with little, 
and grace with less* And after all this are you torfi 
.with anxieties, and wearying yourselves in worldly 
pursuits? Take another view; contemplate the vani- 
ty, the brevity, the uncertainty of life, upon the con- 
tmuance of 'which all depends. "Go to now, ye that 
** say, to-day or to-morrow we will go into such a 
city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell 
and get gain : whereas ye .know not what shall be 
" on the morrow. For what is your life ? it is even 
" a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then 
" vanisheth away." " And he thought within himself 
" saying, what shall I do, because I have no room 
** where to bestow my fruits ? and he said, this will 
** I do, I will pull down my bams and build greater ; 
^ and there will I bestow all my goods. And I will 
^ say to my soul. Soul, thou hast much goods laid up 
•*for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be 
" merry^ But God said unto him. Thou fool, this 
night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whdse 
shall those things be which thou hast provided?** 
^ There, is one alone, and there is not a second ; yeaf 



*« he Jiatl^ oeither child nor brother ; yet is theye ap 
^ end of all hi^ labpur \ neither is his eye satisfi^ witb 
^^ riches : neither saith' he. for whom do I labour, and 
"bereave my soul of good? This is also Vanity/! 
^' Surely every man ivalketh in z ysjin shew : surely - 
** they are disquieted in vain : he })eapeth \ip riches, ' 
*' and knoweth not whp shall gather them.*' " Ii^ 
f* the fullness of his svifficiency he shall be in straits: 
f* every hand of the wicked shall come upon himl ^ 
*^ When he is about to fill his belly, pod shall cast • 
<^ the fury of his wrath upon him, and shall rain it up% - 
f' on him while he is eating." ' ' 

Have you read this iq the Bibje only? Is it there - 
alone that human life is reduced to a' span, a tale, a 
dream, a nothing \ Whom have you followed down to - 
the grave J Who are perpetually falling around you \ -' 
The aged and the infirm? Who. has promised * you 
length of ds^ys ? Who has engaged to secure you from 
disasters and disease, till you have reached your aim ? 
And what is the tenure of your poissession, when the 
^nvied prize is acquired ? Does the honour wither as 
we gather it ? Do we come to* an estate only to be- 
queath it ? Do we lay out ' so much for a mansion 
which hangs on one dying life, an4 when we know 
the Lord of the manor will not aHow us to renew ? 
Shall we purchase at a great pr^ce articles which death 
has appraised and pronounced to be injured and near- 
ly unserviceable ? As strangers and pilgrims, shall we 
^ake a world of pains to beautify and enridi an inn '^ 
whkfa accommodates us only for a ntght, when in the 
niorning we are to go on our way, a way by whic!^ ' ^ 
ve shall never Tetvm ? *^ Lord^ teadh us to number ' ' 

f our <fl^> tiat wp ntvy ' 9ppty our hearts unto wu'. 

IV. It is not the refusal, but the gratify 
cation of our desires that often proves ru- 
inous« God was provoked ; and how does he fliew his 
anger and punifh the offenders ? By indulgence. Ah j 
well had it been for Israel, if God had turned away hi$ 
ear firom tl^eir clamour » and they had never seen a quail. 
iPopr harmless birds! you unknowingly carry along' 
the curse of hes^yen. Deluded sup^^ants i you hail 
their approach ; but you are filling your l^s with 
poison, an4 phigue, and de^th ! Rachel said, ^' Give 
^ me children, or else I die.'' She had children and 
died. The Jews wer^ in-patient for a king ; and says 
God, *^ I gave them a kLpg in mine anger, and took 
•^ him. away in my ynrath.'* " "V^ho knoweth what 
^ is^ood for man in this life ; all the days of his vaiii 
^^ life which he spe^deth as a fhadovy' ?" Connexions 
paffionately sought may proye ^^ scourges in;! your sides, 
V and thorns in your, eyes." A well-spread table, may 
be ^^ made a snare, and a trap, and a ftumbling-block, 
** and a recompense.". Ypuir prospei^ity m^y destroy 
you^ " They that will be^ rich fall into temptation, 
^ and a s^are^^ and into many foofif^ and hiutful luib, 
^ which drown Qieni in deftrudion a^d pei;<^tion." 

When pen are intemperate in their desires after 
yrorldlj things, and succeed in obtaining: what Divine^ 
Providence Jtirom a ki>owledge of its consequences was 
willing to withhipIdV the displeasure ^f God ctm&k 
along with (heir uijhallpwed successes ^ and it matters 
^t iijL what .way. tl^..^rsa isinfliaoil;. whether more. 

SY* Concupiscence Punished. [Ser, xiii, 

visibly or secretly ; whether by mirade or by the natr 
xiral influence of events on their depravity/ 

Sometimes the things so eagerly lufted after, prove 
injurious to health. Thus a man is enabled to r^ 
sign business; but he\becoines gloomy and melaii« 
choly . He lives more sumptuously and deliciously ; 
but diseases, to which he was once a firanger, spring 
from repletion and ii^dulgence and bedoud his future, 

Sometimes satis;paction is taken out of thesb 
things, and the man is far less happy than he was 
]>efore he had gained them. His wishes multiply 
more than his means ; his successes pamper every 
principle unfavourable to internal repose. " He that 
** loveth silver fhall not be satisfied with silver ; nor 
^* he that loveth abundance with increase.** " There 
<< is an evi} which I have seen under the sun, and it is 
*< common among men : a man, to whom God hatk 
** given riches, wealthi and honor, so that he wanteth 
** nothing for hi^ soul of all th^t he desireth^ yet God 
** giyeth him not power to esX thereof.*' 

Things so coveted have often proved morrallt 
INJURIOUS. They have been oil to feed the flame of* 
those evil passions which ought to be extinguilhed* 
They have proved rain and sun-shine, to caU forth and 
ripen a thovswd seeds of temptation, which were bu- 
ried under ground. By these the charafter has not 
only been developed^ but formed. The man has 
changed with his condition; and has become the mon-^ 
fter he once abhorred. " He g^ve t;hem their b&ixW 
f^ desire, but sent leanness into their souls/' And is 
(Lhis a matter of congratulation i Can that be a blesi- 

|^£R. xiir.2 . Conct^iscenc( Punished* Vt^ 

ing which injures your chief welfare, and defiroys thtf 

prosperity of the soul ? Are you ftrangers to that 

spirituality of frame iehich you once discovered ? Arer 

yon chiUed in your holy afiedions I Are you become 

9Qly formal worfldppers ? Are you deprived of the joy 

€^ God's salvation ? Is your conversation leds in heav^ 

fn ? Bo you mind eaothly things ? Are you more un-i^ 

wiUittg to leave this world. and enter a better ? And 
are you gainers ;. because with the sacrifice of all these 
religious advantages you have risen ia life, and in-^ 
creased in affluence ? 

Many prbfessors of religion, not satisfied with the 

ftate in which God has placed them, greedily desire 

more, and upon what principle ? Not their necessities ;. 

Sut their lufts^ It is not a house they want ; this they 

have already, but a mansion. It is not food and rai- 

ment they want .:' these are provided,, but superfluities-. 

it is not an ability to travel they want y they have 

ftrength and feet already, but it is a carriage. They 

wifh to be idle, luxurious, splendid, superior to others. 

He enlarges their resources ; he indulges them, induU 

ges their indolence, their pride, their arrogance, their 

carnality, their forgetfulness of God ; and what is such' 

an indulgence ? what is it for Providence to feed our 

sin ? to give us permiffion to go aftray ? and inftead 
of hedging up our way with thorns* to render it allur* 
ing and sedudng, by scattering it all along with flow- 

Men atad brethren, the refle&ioa iis no lisss edifying* 
• than awfuL 

ft fliews uSi Firft, RoWimpoffible it is to determine 
the love or anger of God* from external drcumftanccsv 

Bcbdd the Hcb man dothed m pttrpk; md file Iki^^ 
aiid Ariag smnptuoitsly eve^ day. See Lazjtftis hkl 
ait ius gate full of sore^ Ind desiring to be f^d witli 
die cniinte whicli fett from bis taU& Bttt tb^ fyfi 
nier i^ the estmy, and the latter the^' fi&shd df 6c)d ; 
idfig ago the one has b^n comfof t^^ and the oth^ 
tornietlted ; jEnd thei'e were the sliiie dispOations itt 
i&ad towards them when they were upob earth. Therii 
is nothing concerning which we are more Hable id 
^Tt^ thlh worldly success. It depends so entirely up- 
on God, and it is so flattering to our feelings, tliat we 
cin scarcely persu&ie ourselves is ever an un« 
^Mroorable dmen. Bat this is not unfirequendy the 
ca^. It h sometimes sent in anger ;, and we should 
Jsdiour id ascertain the principle frbm which it is giv- 
en. A natural man regards only the effect, but th^ 
Christian lookd to the Source. A stranger woulcf 
prefer the flower of a plant to the root^ but the gar*' 
dener who owns it values the root more than the 
flower. O ! it is well to be aUe to sdy " thou hast in 
« love to my soul" delivered me from the pit of cor- 
ruption, formed for me such a union, prospered cfle^ 
labour o£ my hands, blessed my bread stnd my water. 

" How Mireet our daily comforts prove, 
»< When they arc seasoned with his love.** 

Secondly. This principle crushes envy. *^ Be ndC 
^* thou afraid when one is made rich, when the gh»y 
•^ of his house is increased.'' ** Fret not thyaetf be- 
^ cause of him who prospereth in his:way ;'' you are 
not certain that his condition isr redly dmirable. Would 
you envy a man the wine he is eoinfi to drink. 

Sta. xfii.^ 'C(maif!kcmi Pmthfyd. Mi 

Itoew tiflat ft wooJd 0D^ him? or the robe he ia g<K 
li^ t0 ^MSUE, if^yoi^KiDewthatit n^oaid iafe& him wkk 
ikephgaei On therotlliBr hauid you misiy err in yolir 
ficy. Toasay, nchaCriend, alas! is reduced; but 
ik is only tafabn dowir from tk* hiU of danger, aAd 
^ac^ in tly va^ks of saiiety* You say, he . groana; 
yes, a &nb is ampttt9ti% ) but it ^ to save the. whok 
%ody from mortification anddealb* 

Thirdly. Thepro^crity of theiHck^, ahdthbsuf* 
fieriD'gs of the righteous, are a myftery, winch has ofte* 

'pei^exed even good men ; but here it is explained 
He can giVe in wraA, and refuise irf mercy. He C2M 
indulge us to deftru^on ; and he can chaften us thafc 

^we may not be condemned with the worid. 

Fourthly. Here we can harmonize the chairader 
alkd promise of God with those denials ^hich He 
sometimes gives to out petitions, tie is a God head- 
ing prayer. He has said, ** Ask, a'nd it ffiall be given 
•^ you ; seek, and ye fliall find.'* But you have im- 
plored many things which you have never obtained. 
This helps you to underftand the scriptures, arid Ihews 
you with what conditions and qualifications God has 
spoken; He did not engage to gratify your desires, 
whet'r his indulgence would be beneficial or inju- 
rious. This would have been a threatening, not a 
promise. A heathen could say, '^ It is kind in the ^ 
^ Gods not to hear us, when we pray for things, that 
'•* are evil.*' If a man give " gjood things^ unto his 
tftildren in answer to th^ reasonable and needful 
""desiias, he.ia^ » good father ; and who would think 
of refleding i:^n him as not discharging the du« 

Jtifs Jo( Jns rdatkm, bepw^e h» does not, while th^ 



are ino^abte of jud^ng for themselves, give tlaem & 
Ibiife Oft a loaded piftol, or sufisr Mem to dioib a l$i^ 
der, and beconwig giddy expose thensehr^ to ioftuia 
deduction ! 

Let VIS karn also, witli' what a r^#ve v^eihould aU 
wai^ pny« Let * us not ppeisfume te detentiini befbre- 
liaiid thiU: certain things are Indispensably neee^sary^ 
and because we think we absolutely want them, grow' 
ftetfol and miserable when we are refused. Tlui is- 
to prescribe to God ; to impeach his wisdom and his^' 
goodness ; and nothing can be mc^e improper in the 
' unworthy who have no chims, aad in the ignorant' 
who have been so often deceived in their judgments. 
Let us always refer ourselves to his coilnsel ; let us be" 
always his followers, not his guides ; let us truft, and 
xiot teach hiiii, and let us learn to imitate the example 
of David, who in a case the mod trying, saidv ^' Carry 
^ bade the ark of God into the dty : If I ^11 find 
^ £iiVour in the eyes tA the Lord, he will bring me a- 
^^ gain,* and ihew me both it ahd its habitation. But 
^^ tf he thus say, I' have no delight in thee ; behold 
^ here t an% let him do to me as seemeth good to him/' 
And be it remembered, this is the way to succeed. 
When Crod gives in kindness, he produces a prihpus 
temperance of desire, which will allow him to indulge 
us with safety. A preparation for our mercies is as 
necessary as a preparation iox our trktls and our duties i 
who thinks of this ? 

Rnally, The aubj^ect says to us in fordble Tangu:tge, 
be moderate in your desires \ ^ let your conversation 
be without cOvetousness ; be content with such things 
as ye kave." ^^ Seekest thou great tlnngs to thyself. 

^«^k llMn :itt3t*'' Odi* SaviDXNr teaches ftm Ais !» 
#a Ml ymr tmy devptfam ; ^^ Give «s tUv day out 
^(hily tireacL'' AH Jacob stipulates for is ^brtad 
^^to eit and rapoietit to put on/* And ^^ l^viag focul 
c^ind raiment/'. says |ui apostle ^let ^ be theremth 
^.colitent." Tlds is the gtackl improyeine&t we 
(iughttonnfeof thepfeoepf Ustory bdbre«ss ^'ii6w 
*^ these thjpgs were our examples, to the intbnt 


*^ AA TH£V ALSO LUSTED*" How Were qilails evil 
things ? Is not every creature of God good ? The cas« 
was this ; th^ .were evil in tjbeir consequences, and al- 
so in the pttidi^ from which they were desired* 
Tfiese Jews craved them jinnecessarily ; . they had a 
sufficiency before from the miraculous and merdful 
providence of heaven j they craved ihim intemper# 
^ly and unsubmissivisly ; they demanded; *^they 
9Vept aloud/' Christians, beware of such senseless 
and inordinate longings ; beware of a roving fancy ; 
o^ imaginary wants ; of ynsan Aified wishes. ^' Dearly 
^* beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims^ 
*^ abstain fcom fleshly lusts which war against the soul/' 
*^ They that are Christ's, have crucified the Qesh with 
^ the affections and lusts/' 

Men and Brethren, we have forbidden you to seek 
after temporal things with too much soUcitude ; but 
remember, it is far otherwise with regard to divine con- 
cerns. Spiritual blessings suit the soul ; afibrd real sat* 
is&dion ; secure the friendship of God ; endure for 
ever; these are our perfection. Here we cannot be 
tOQ earnest^ too ambitious, txK> covetous. ^^ Open thy 
^^ipouth wide, and I will fill it." Ask and receive. 


that f*yooT joy may be fblL'' ^And this I |»ray 
f^tki^ yrarloveinay adximri - yet mure ^aad meitpiii 
<f knowledge and ip all judgement ; that ye may ap- 
^ prove things that are excellent ; that ye may be sm^ 
^ cere and ^tfao«( offisnce till die^ day of Cl^t ; be- 
P ing filled with the fruits of ri^tedusness^ whidi are 
ff by Jefus Christ i}nto the g^wy and praise of God/7 



, -i" 



I'H. .u ■ agfta 




Romans v. 4. 


THE Christian never finds this world 
to be his reft. He is called to a life of labour and di£- 
ficoky ; of mortification and reproach. His afflictiont 
are many ; but he possesses pne incomparable advan- 
ikge : he has a hope full of immortality. This ren-p 
defs every duty delightful ; this teaches him in what- 
soever state he is« therewith to be content ; this en- 
fightens his darkness, and alleviates his sorrow. Like 
a helmet of salvation, it guards his head in the oday of 
battle. like an anchor pf the sou}^ it Itiolds and se- 
cmres him in the storms of adversity. Like a pleasing 
companion, it tnvels i»rith him through all the tedi* 
ousness of the wildeniess, and often reminds him of 
his removal firom this vale of tears, to tl^^ reft that iff* 
mains tor the people pf God tie is saved by hope. 
He rejoices in hc^. 

Of this hope the apostle speaks in the words which 
we have read, and his huiguage is peculiarly worthy 

M6 Hope. £Ser. x«r, 

of our attention. '^ And hope maketh n<^ ashamed^ 
^« becaufle the love of God is shed aiwotd ia our heaitf 
^ by the Holy Ghost which is ^ven unto us/' L^ 
us consider the excellency^ and the evidence of this 
hope. Let us, L Sh£W how it preserves FROBf 
0HAME ; and, 11. Ascertain its connection 


• I . . . «. « 

Part I. It is not necessary to enlarge upon the na- 
ture of hope ; it is a pleasing expectation of some fu- 
ture attainable gpod.' But a commendation is here 
given it, which it will be useful for us to examine. 
It maxeth not ashamed. We may take three 
views of it. We may oppose it to the hope of the 
Worldling ; the hppe of the Pharisee ; and the hope of 
Uke Antinomian. Hope causey sfaaipe^ by the insuS" 
&t/MNer on ITS oajMCr^ and this f$ the hppe of thit 
WoRLvuNQ ; by rjsu mjuxj^w Qf it$. Moiwvjh 
TTOH^ and this is the hope of the PltAXius ; by tj^m 
fAUMiiyMss OF ITS WAKRAnnTf and thb ia the ttope ^ 
che AuTiKOMiAN. The hope of the phfisti^ hsft 
the noblest object^ the surest found^tip*, the devest; 
warranty and witli regard to each of these, }t ^uMctfOf 
noT A$nAM^. 

first. Hope may cause shame by the in^fucih^ 
cr OF ITS OBJECT i and such is the hope of th^ 
Worldling. And here vf^itt not going to observe 
how frequently ^ the men of the wiDrld^ never reach 
tke mark and obtain the prixe for which they run ; 
we allow them to be successful, an;d only call upoa 
you to witness their disappointment when their expec* 
taticm AitM accomplished. For what have they gainf 

ei to reward their tdl, and to indemi^ them fer the 
sacrifices they haVe 'made ? As they examine the ac^ 
ijoisitten whicfif fliey so much overv^ijiied j see how 
they blush ? he* hoM^ they exclaim j * Vanity erf Tan- 
^^es^ aft h vanky and veication of s[»rit !'* 

«< Id vain we seek a heaven below the sky ; 

<< The woHd has fidse but flatterbg charmt : 
^ Its dbtaot joys shew big in our esteenii 
^ But lessen still as they draw near the^y^ 
** In our embrace the visions die ; 

^ And when we grasp the air^ forms, 
^ W0 lose the pleasing dream.'*'' 

Look forward and see tlie worldling called to strip' 
and die. See him laying down all his honours, all (is 
riches on the side of the grave; bidding farewett to' 
every scene his soul held dear, and entering the eter- 
nal world destittkte. N6w thought can no longer he 
diverted; every disguise drops off; now he forms a 
true estimate of things ; and what does he think of 
those objeds for which he deprived himself of rest, 
and racked himself with anxieties ? for which he dis- 
regarded the calls of reli^on, and abandoned the pros* 
peA of endless life ? What does he think of them now 
they are fled, for ever fied, and have left him without 
resource? What does Alexander now think of his^ 
bloody trophies f What does Herod now think of kiU- 
ing James, and condemning Peter, because he s)iw 
" it pleased the people ?" What does Jud3S think of 
his thirty pieces of silver ? They are all ooVered with 
confusion, and filled with contempt* 

But let us view them in their present circumstances; 
Here they are in their best estate ; they have their por* 
tion in this life. Here the crowned votaries of the 

168 H^^ {[SiK. xxwi 

t » 

^orld teem to b^ bstppy^ and tbey ate eAiried hj aS 
arouiid them. They, are envied ; but it is only by the 
foolish aadjthe ignorant, who know them not. They, 
seefn indeed to be ha]>py ; btft peneCn^te thcougb the 
{^oiy which sutrounds thfemii and look within, and yotf 
will find them harrassed "dnth doubts, a^^tated with 
fears, a prey to evil passions, ^ a trouble^ sea when it 
^^ cannot rest, Whose waves ca^t up. mire and dirt J* 
Could you approach them in thotee modients in which 
the delusions of imagination ^ve {dace to the remon- 
strances of conscience, and reason is called to the 
chsur, you would hear them confessing ? <^ all this is 
^ importaint only in the eyes of ftrangers ; they ga^M 
^^ on the exhibition and admite ; but we are behind the 
^^ scenes, and view the naked ropes and puUies. We 
are not happy, nor is it in the power of these things 
tosatisfy our desires. In all this di86ipati<m we nev« 
er taste a drop of pure joy. The friendship of the 
^' world is worse than nothing. We are astonished 
*' when we refleft upon out own folly. We do not 
<< follow these vanities ; we are dragged after them. 
<< Our life is bondage ; O that we were free indeed ! 
'^ ah ! ye righteous, you alone have liberty and peace. 
^^ Happiness is only to be found in a deliverance from 
*^ the present evil world. We will retire i we will re- 
*' form ; .we will seek a better, even a heavenly coun* 

Tes, tell me you who have made the world your 
hq»i what has it done for you i In the many years 
you have devoutly served it, how much has it advan* 
ced your happiness i What have your pleasures and sat- 
isfa^ns been, compared with your regrets and dis- 


Silt. Xiv.] B^e. 389 

gusts? How soon when hiUed to sleep, hwt your 
cbarming dreams vanished, aiid your waking disquie- 
tudes tormented you zg^n\ At the moment of my 
address, are you hafpy ^ ^ T^^ ^^^ nothing ? desire 
nothing ? Are you not asldng in lafnguage with which 
you commenced your career twenty, forty years ago, 
^ho will she^ me any good ? Do you Aot shun soli- 


tude and retirement ? Are you not ifrald of refle<9ion ? 
Bo you not flee from one cbmpany and amusement to 
another, to get rid of yourselves ? Do you never envy 
ihe happiness of the In^tes ? Are you straAgers to a wbh 
that you h^d neVer been born ? And if this be the case* 
with regard to all your gdbd things,^ wbat do you think 
of your evil onei ? Having no silppibft in the day of ad- 
versity, you Mus¥ sink. Having no diversion, you 
OAMKOT escape the scourge of your oi^n mind ; and 
consciente free from restraints will be able to take a 
<keadful blow. Such is yotir present condition. You 
are as certain of disappointment in thb world 2s in the 
world to come j and when you af^ear before God inr 
judgment^ you will not be heard to lament that all your 
enjoyments are over, tiiat your happiness is ekd^et 
and your misery beoun. No. ¥ou will not say^ 
our haipp&ness is ended ;'* but " we never were' hap^ 
py : our misery is begun $ we sdways were mis^ra^ ; 
we found the way as well^as the end of transgressors 
^ hard, and by a wretched time, we prepared ourselves 
*• only for a more wretched eternity.** 

On this dark ground we bring forward the Chris- 
dan to advantage. The ol^eft of his hope is the greats 
est good a creature can possess ; and while in every 
thing else the expedation exceeds the reidity, in this 

N N 



the reaMty infinitely surpasMB tbe tXftAa^Jdoou VOlbM 
^to propose the hope of the Chriarian, we exclude eve- 
ty evil we. feel or fear ; every iaiperfeAum whkh de* 
grades or grieves us. Jt is ^ a house not made with 
^^baudS) eternal in the heaveks:.^' itas ^^adty ^irtucfe 
^ haib foundations, whose bntldier and whose maker is 
^ God ; it is ^ a* kingdom which cannot be shaken -/^ 
it b ^f a crown of glory that fadeth iiot away.'' Think 
of the tompany witb which he will associate, all th*' 
tndy wise and good ^ *^ the innumerable company of 
^ angels f ** the Lord of all,"* in whose " presence 
^ tht^re is fcdliiess of joy, and at whose right hand there 
^ are pleasures for evermore." Take his body ; it i^ 
lk>w vile, but it shall be changed and fashioned like 
the glorious body of the Saviour. Think of the body 
of the Son of God ; a body to be worn by t&e Jnc^' 
of aH when he sits upon his throne ; a^body in which 
£e wSil'be for ever adored. Ttus is the niddel to which 
rfie Christian wiH be conformed. And after all, this 
i^eidy the inferior piurt of him ; this is only the dwell- 
ings what will the inhabitant be I this is only the in^ 
strum^it, what will the agent be! however fefine4' 
and sulittltzed, tUs is only matter, what will tht spixit 
hel ^^ It doth not yet sippear what we shall be ; but 
^: this we know, that wh»i he shall appear we shall be 
^.Ufae him, for we shall set him as he it/' Such is 
his hope, and it ^^ maketh not ashamed*" Hb under- 
standing does not reproach hiiu for pursuing such a 
prize. He does not U^ih to a5fow his purpose to the 
world* He does not shrink from a comparison with 
philosophers, princes, heroes. He leads a subUmer 
tife ; he has taken a grander aim. And when he h» 

9%9L. XXT.] . Hi^, «»1 

/Mqkured this bt aw Bdn eti^ ^iinll he be ariuuned that he » 
Mghty valaed it, iindtbat to gam it he was wiUuig t^ 
ideny himsdf, and take up his cxoBsi tfo y cather iff 
ahame should enter heaven, he would be ashamed: to 
diinky that it made so feeble an in^ression upoa hit 
knUid ; that it engrossed so fittle of his attention i thzt 
with such a happiness in p ro sp e ft , he should ever have 
walked mounufiilly b^ore the Lord ; and that wit|^ 
such a prize suspended before him^ he sboukl ever jhave 
t)(eA 30 elu^gish in his endeavours to seize it. 

Secondly, Hope may cause shame by the we^ikp- 
KJfS9 OF ITS voukdation: and such is the hope of 
the SELF-RIGHTEOUS Pharisbi. For on what does 
he place his dependence but something of his own^ 
ills own worthiness, or his own works ? And here «? 
may observe, first, that what he reties ojs does not come 
up to the nature of genuine religion^ but is soipetl^ug 
Aerely ritual, ceremonious, external, in whigh th# 
lieart has no concern. He derives his encouragement 
Irom negative qualities, from con^parison of hipiself 
with others, from the number of his petrforaonoes^ 
lirom the babmcing of duty with omksions, and of virti)# 
with vice* *^ And the Pharisee stood and prayed thii« 
*^ with himself: God, I th^nk thee that I am not as 
other men are, extortioners, unjust» adulterers, or 
even as tips Publican. 1 fast twice in the week, I 
f^ give tithes of aU that I possess.'' Secondly, if the 
works he pleads were in their principles truly spirit- 
ual and holy, they would not afford a ground of de- 
pendence. They would be a put of the building, 
but could not be the foundation. They would furnish 
M vnth evidence, but could not ^ve us a title. 

S9f H^ [Ser. xnr.' 

Thifxlly, tbe indulgence of such a hepe is even crimi^ 
nal, and higUy offensive to God. While he seeks to 
obtfldn a ri^t to eternal life by his own obe^nce, Iw 
is «e^dng salvation by the works of the law, and not 
by the £uth of Jesus Christ. Accordingly he opposes 
the whde design of the Gospel dispensatibn ; rcto God 
of his peculiar glory ; refleSte upon his wkdom, as hay- * 
ing been employed in a needless trile ; contemns 
his authority in commanding us to believe on the Lord 
Jesus Christ ; denies his truth in the record which he 
has given of his Son ; frustrates his grace, and makes 
Jesus Christ to be dead in vain. He disregards tbe 
love and mercy of the Saviour, tramples under foot 
^he blood of the Son of God, and views his righteous- 
ness and his suftrings as wholly unnecessary, or a$ 
only an addition to supply a deficiency. Therefore; 
Fourthly, such a hope can neyer secure him from 
shame. It will be found " like a spider's web," curi- 
oudy wrought, but easily, irreparably destroyed. The 
basis being too weak, the superstructure falls and 
crushes hiih as a fool and an offender, guilty in his 

very ruin. " Too proui), says God, to submit to my 

• • • 

righteousness, you shall appear before me in yout 
own. Refuung the Gospel, you shall be tried by 
*^ the law to which you have appealed. Unable to 
** save yourselves, I devised a method of sidvation ; I re- 
«« vealed it ; but this you have despised and have sought 
" another. Walk in the Ught of yoiir own fire, and 
^* in the sparks that y« have kindly : this shaU ye 
«< have of knine hand ; ye shall Vft down in sorrow." 

—Now see the awakened, humbled sinner. He is 
asking, « How shall man be just with God ?'' « Whw 

Sa». XIV.3 U^ fits 

• . 

^' with shall I come bcfiore % Lend?" '< Where can I 
'* safely rest a hope that maketh not ashamed ^* These 
inquiri^ lead him to the Kble, and he soon finds the 
information he wants. **The Son of man is come 
^ to seek and to save that which was lost. It hatl| 
f^ please4 the Father, that in him should all fiillnesf 
f^ dwelL He hath made us accepted in the beloved 
** He is the end of the law for righteousness to everjr 
^^ one that believeth; By him all that believe are jus- 
f ^ tified freely ^om aU things/' This is like cold wa- 
ter to a ;h}rstf so\d. This attracts him ; this deter- 
nunes the course (tf his application* ^* In him will 1 
f * trust* He is the door, by him will I enter. He is 
^ the only refuge, in him I will hide* There is nq 
^ other, and I desire no other foundation ; and on 
^ this will I build. I love obedience, I pray for gnu 
^^ itude ; but I abhcHT merit. When I have done aU, 
f^ I am an unprofitable servant ; sin mixes with all \ 
^* do : I MUST relinquish every other confidence ; I 

■ r 

<« have no medium between this reliance and de* 
!* SPAig*'! 

Now this hope cannot d^eive him } it is as firm ^s 
the truth of God, and the all-sufficiency of the Saviour 
can make it. ^^ Behold," says God, '^ by in Zion 
f < a stumhfing stone and rock of offence : and whoso- 
^^ ever believeth on him shall not be ashamed" In 
proportioii as the faith of the believer increases he 
partakes of this assurance, and can say, ^ I know in 
^\ whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he 
*< is able to keep that which I have committed to him 
f < agisinst that day." See him advaiKdng to the throne 
of pod J ^< Who is he tha|t copdefpne^ i It is Cb|ist 

.^ Am idied.*> Wlio 6ui hinder hk apfiroidi ? Htii 
feen marl^ed with the ** Mood <>f flprinkfiiif ," ]^ ii 
iMvd maldng mentioii of his i%hteou8neM onlyy 

^ All joy to the believer 1 I^e can spealf— ^ 

<* Trembling, yet. happy ; confident, yet meek. 

^ Since the dear hour that bitwght me to thy foot, 

<< And cut up all my folttei by the root, 

^ I never trusted in an arm b«t thine, 

^ Nor hoped but in thy rightiKmsne$s divine ; 

M My prayers and alms, imperfect and defil'd^ 

^ Were but the feeble efforts of a child : 

^ HoweVr performed, it was their brighter pai^ 

^ Thatthey proceeded from a thankfol heart : 

M Ctonnaed id thme jfwn all-p^rifymg bbsd, 

K For^re their evil, a^d accept their good ; 

^ I cast them at thy feet — my only plea 

^ Is what it was — dependence upon thee— 

^ While struggling b the vale pf teavs below 

« TflAT De>er {ailed--aer shall it bil me npw« 

« Angelic gratulations rend the skies ; 

* Pride fdls unfHtyed, never more to ris4$ ; 

^ Humility is crowned ; and £iith receives the prize.? 

Thirdly. Hope may cause shame by rns, falsmt 
HESS VF ITS WABMAurr \ and rach is the hope of the 
Antinomian. How dreadful w31 it be ^^ to fafl into 
^' the hands of the living God^" while we are imagin- 
ing ourselyes to be his friends : to suppose ourselves 
in the road to heaven, and drop at once into the dq>ths 
of hell ! ^* There b a way which seemeth right unto a 
^ man, but the end thereof are the paths of death." 
And in this way all those are wattang, who while they 
profess to expect eternal life, and to place all their 
dependance upon the Saviour, ^ have not the Spirit of 
'* Chrift," and are devoid of his image : whose ^th 

dots not oveivkinfie tbe vodd ; whiim hOpn iloes not 
puffify them ^^ even as He is pure/' For while in thm 
fltafce, their expectation of heaven, whatever be their 
IcBOwtedge or their creed, is a mere fancy. A maa 
with all his ignorance, may as well persuade himsdf 
dutt he is the greatest philosopher $ or with all his in* 
digence, may as rationally conclude that he is possessed 
of ail the wealth of the Indies, as persons ims^pute,' 
dutt they are in a fair way for glory, white they are 
aCrimgers to real sanctificatibn and " newness of life.'' 

There is nothing in the Scriptures that does not 
ecmdemn such an hope. It assures us that ^' without 
^ holineis no man shaU see the Lord :'' and that a^ 
cept we ^' be converted, and become as little cfaiU 
dren,** we ** dall in no case enter the Idngdom of 
6od." Ifence our Saviour by a very ftriking simU- 
itude holds forth the foUy of leaning, on any thing as 
a PROOF of our ftate. Borate from hdy obedience. 
<^ Whosoever hearetiv these things of mine, and do- 
'^ £TH them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who 
** built his house upon a rock : and the rain desdended 
^* and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat 
U|X)n that house : and it fell not, for it was founded 
upon a rock. And every one that heareth these 
" sayings of mine, and doeth th^m nqt, fhall be 
<( likened unto a foolifh man who built his house upon 
** the sand j adad the rain descended and the floods 
^ came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house ; 
** and it fell, and great was the fall of it/' 

And indeed, to take another view of the subject, 
it would be perfe£Uy useless to give such a man a title 
to glory, and even to bring him there ; for he would 

136 Bopi. [5e&« zit; 

be miserable fiUl ; he would carry hdl along with lunot 
iti bis sin ; he would have no capacitf for the services^ 
no relifh for the enjoyments of heaven. God fainisdf 
cannot do that which contradids the essential per£w« 
tions of his nature, and he cannot make us happy wixh 
himself till he has made us holy like himself. ^< Fw 
<< what fefllowfhip hath righteousness with unrighteouft- 
^ ness ? and what communion hath light with dark> 
^* ness ?*• Thus the very nature of things^ as well fs 
the word of God, necessarily Umits this hope to the 
regenerate and sanftified. And therefore the grapd 
inquiry fhould be, what evidence you have of this 
change, and what reason you are able to give of the 

hope that is in you ? A. more convincing and satis* 
fadory one it is impossible to assign, than the apofile 

Part H, When he tells us, " Hope maket^ n6t 
^^afhamed, because the lofe op God is shed ASROArt 


•* f^jv UNTO US.'* Let us examine the connexion 
there is between this love, and the accompliifameiit of 
our hope. The following considerations will reilder it 

Firft. This love is the blessed proof of the divine 
regard ; for the aflFeftion is mutual : ** I love them 
** that love me,'' yea our love to him is the conse- 
quence of his love to us : ** I have loved thee with an 
«* everlafting love, therefore with loving kindness have 
** I drawn thee : we love him because he firft loved 
*« us.** And what can we desire more than to know, 
we arc beloved of God ? What docs not his friehd- 

ship insure? With him there is no variableness or 

shsdow of turning. He is able to do for ns exceed*^ 

ifig abundantly abov? alt that we ask or. think. He i 

Ifiio^eth all thin^f He is very {utifiil and^of tender ^ ^ 


Setondly. Tliis love charafterizes the persons for 
trhom this happiness is reserved. Search the scrip* 
tures and see, who are authorised to claim the promisei^ . 
of eternal life. Not those who are enemies to God by 
^cked trorks, not those who live without God in the 
world. No; hut those and those, only, who desire 
and strive to please and to serve him— *^' We know ^ 
^ that all things work together for good to them th^t 
•* love God/* "Hessed is the man that endyreth ' o^ 

^ temptation, for when be is tried he shall receive thei ^ 

^ crown of life, which the Lord hath- promised to \% 
^^ them that love htm.'' . ^^ Hath not God chosen ther 
f* poor of this world rich in fsuth, and heirs of the 
^\ ,king(|om which he hath promised to them thiit lov^ 

Thirdly. This love qualifies us for the glory which 

shall be revealed. Take a proper view of thb happi^ 

ness ; is it not divine ? does it not flow,, firam the pres-t ' 

ence of God ? from the display of ^|^ perfe^ns ?' 

from the adorations ;^nd praises which he wiH eteraal* 

ly receive \ What then c^ prepare you for itjbut the 

love of God ? If you do net love a person, M would 

be a tgrmj^nt ra^r than a delight to be contmually « 

with him, and to hear him extolled But the stron* 

ger the )ove is which you bear to auotheri thA mor^ 

pleasure you feel in his company and conversatiop, th^ 

jmpre satisfaction you derive from the "share you b^vf f 

Q o > . 


xrr^ -nis: 

Aip issaiT^ Will. Tnrr. xb^- i t' x = r: : : -^" e 

of mniiiT:, . S-. r art t l. r ■ - -r 

abnndzzni^ auovt al rsn.* ^if^ m»ii ' ^ -^r* 


TIhs i«m csarafssnz : earaest 

UllUlU tills faaippilMS: i-^ IUR ^'-l- -^ 

r wrei and see, -v^^ho are amboBK : -^^ refle^ons^ 

I ofctarmllife. Notthofc-^; s -- ubj^cl. The 

I kicked works, not tkate-B:^ f--- ' reaaoi:i to fear 

i wodd. So ; bnt thoK k. i£. 'cr part of man* 

i tod fitixve to pkaK mm. t *»- ^ T rdigion^ b such 

* ^ dot all tloiigs WOO: lugfiig. ^^ ug ^hame and coo* 

me of thia deluded 

I « ^ tepptaition^ for vjce: «r i:^ are ready la say» ^* our 

\ '^ Grown of life, i— ■' •^.- > f orebodtogi ; we hc^ 

rr : in^ned tp question ti{e 


i ^ poor of ^titt( «BL. £^ ision/' Even tUs ciroim- 

^ ^* kinejoa yj— li ^ This relufkance to e:Kami«e 

ehension of itsi goodness^ An^ 

h nxomenkt would leave thisg^ 

iUft Ik tf9HM» lin ? Suffer me thea to ask you 

. Will it h^ar investigation? b it 

/ord of Truths Has it been form- 

convi^tion^ or is it the ofispriogof 

* no danger of i^ proving false and 

;ope MUST prove, that is accompa* 

ble in^uence, produdive of no prop- 

r words, that is npt in alliance with 

. But alas ! if the love of God was 

be impossil^e £br you to live as you 

coi)ld not; banish bifn from youc r^- 

^98 tfope. (SitL. xltr^ 

in his regarc^s, and from the confidence M4lich efiaUes 
you to say, he is mtrte. By loving God you are prepttv 
ed for a happiness which is found only «i him. Aa^ 
lias he made you meet to be partakers of die inherit 
tance of the saints in light? and wUl he faul to grM 
y<m possession ? Has he qualified ydu for a sttuattoa 
which you shall never fill ? and pKipaoed you for % 
Messedness which ke aei^er des^ned you ta ^jqpect- 

Fourthly. This kfve is indeed the h^pMo^f^ *oA 
die foretaste of this haj^ness. We are always thm 
sanme with the tit^eA of oHir atflEbftfam^ Tbe inAge 
dyefling in the miiki, leaves ks impreaaooi We iafce 
I » the likenept of the excellency we edotemflate, and 

"^ are esalted into the perfection we adore. If our Jove 

• be fiised upon any tl^ng mean and sordidt it wiU de- 
base u«. If it ^ be fixed upon creatures^ we shall par* 
f ak% of thdr changes and nuseiies. tE it be fij^ed on 
tiie ever^blessed' God, we shall become divine and 
heavenly; it will dignify^ and refine; and train^uilttf, 
and fift, aiid satisfy. the soul* With this loise we can- 
not be mkeMblb^ It retiders difficult thing» easy, and 
* bitter ones ^^^w^r It makes tlie duiies of reti^on to 
be ^^ways ojPpieasantness/' We caU <^the sabbath 
** a drfight.** We are glad when they eay to us, ••let 
** us go into the house of the Lord*' It b good for 
us "to tJi^w neir to God/* O,' «lhe comfdrta rf 
«* this love !** They are heaven cottie down to esbrth. 
Heaven is the world of love.- There it breaAes; 
there k reigns ; thfere it trmniplis. It is aB love, and 
only lo ve^— ^ And he that dwefieth in love, dwelletk 
^ in God, and God in hitn.'* Hence ft fully appears. 

tltat ft hope canae^flfl wifh the love of G08, may be 
tlifvly ii^iUgec}^ ;uid 19a never make us ashamed For 
tins love ia the firoof of the diving favour ; the char* 
fiAer of the hehs of prooHse ; the preparation for fiip 
me gbry ; the comm^nceiMnt of heaven, the dawnr 
iAg of the dny^ the first f nuts of th^ Spirit, the earnest 
4^ our inherkapoe* 

.ATen and Brethren, attend to a £sw refle&ions, 
which naturaiUy ^ise from this unportant subjf d. The 
first is airful and distresaog. We have reaaoi:i to fear 
that the hope cherished by the greater part of masi^ 
jhjnd, and by €00 raany profreesors of religion, is such 
AS will cover diem ^^ with everl^staag shame and opu* 
^^ tempt/' P^haps there are some of thia deluded 
imBiA)er in this asilmfaly* Too are ready ta say, ^^ our 
^u^inds are easy; we £^ no foreboding^; we hope 
H to be savied, and are not inclined tp question t^ 
♦* pwprlety of pur coadusion.'' Even tbis circura- 
stince looks suspicious. This reludance to es^aiolile 
,fc\iT state betrays apprehension of its goodneis^ And 
who in a (rase of such momenly would leayei tUj^g^' 
•doubtfal 2nd uncertain? Suffer me then to 2^ you 
what your hq>e is i Will it hpar investigation ? U it 
sandsoned by the w«rd of Truth ? Has it been fonn- 
ed in the li§^ of convidipn, or ip it the ofispring of 
dackness ? Is there 90 dauger of i^S proving false and 
iatal? Such the hope m^st prove, that is accomiii- 
f^ with no su^ltabje inftjience, produftive of no prop- 
or effi^ ; in ofh^r words, that i$ npt in alliance with 
the lav/8 of God. But aha ! if the k)ve of God was 
in jXM^ it would beimpossit^e for you to live as you 
now do. You ,cotjld not banish hi jn fro w ypujc re- 






TSjrtw xi^ 




membraiice ; your tneditatioA or him would be sweet, 


and your thoughts of him would be precious. You 
coulcl not love the worid ; ♦* for if any man lore the 
^ world, the love of the Father is not in* him/' Tt>u 
coald not transgress the (Urine kws ; ^ for this is the 
^love of God, that we keep his commanchnents.^'- 
Tou could not'bq regardless of the welfiire of your 
fellow creatures ; foe ^f if a man say, 1 love God, ^d 
^^ hateth^ii brother, lie is a liar ; for he that loreth 
^^ not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he lovls 
'^ God whom he Jhath not seen/ '* Whoso hath this 
worlds good, and seeth hi^ brother have need, and 
shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how 
f^ dwelletK the love of God in him I' Destitute of the 
love qf Go^ it matters not whit fou are* If this be 
DOt the grand influencing principle of your lives, your 
.orthodoxy is only a December's night, equally dear 
aod cold ; your r^eligion is vwi ; your hope prenimp- 
<;^n, . delusion, destrudion. 

Secondly. You may learn from hence, how to attaxb 
n" the full assurance «f hope unto the end*" It is not 
by dreams and visions, sudden suggestions, mysterious 
impressions, and an inexplicable consck)usness ; but by 
keeping yourselves in the love of God, and abounding 
therein more and moii^e. Jt is absurd to- imagine that 
your hope of Heaven will be lively, if your, love of 
C^od ' be Weak and languid. Every worictty confor- 
mity will impede the exercise, and darken the pnosi- 
peft of this hope ) every sin will give Satan an advaii«> 
tege over you» and rob you of much evidence aiiid con- 
solation. Though the blessings of salvation ai^ all of 
grace, they ore to be enjoyed only in the way of obt^ 


4ien€e. ^'TJien sblUI ^e know, /if we fottow 'tato 
^« know the Lord : his going forth b^pr^soaed as the 
f ^ mc^ming^ : and be phalli come unto as 'as the ndn; ts 
f^ the latter and the: fonser rain upon' the eatth."^ 
*^ He that hath my commandments ahd kee^th them, 
<^ he it b that k»veth me : and he that krsreth me sfaaH 
f^ be loved of my Father^ and I wiU love him, and 
^ manifest myself to him/* • 

Thircfiy. There are some of you^ in whose hearts 
the Holy Ghost has shpd abroad the love of God, 
By a display of infinite benevolence, he has slain the 
enmity of your minds, enlightened your understand!- 
ings, and renewed your dispositions, jt is now your 
chief aim to please and to enjoy him. And your lan- 
guage is, " wliom have I in heaven but thee, and there 
^* is none upon earth that I desiie beside thee. The 
** Lord is niy portion, saith my soul, therefore wil^:* 
" I laoPE IN Him.-*——** Yes $ and you have rea- 
son to do so. Let the exercise of this hope be constant 
and increaang. Though you have much in possession, 
yptt have infinitely more in reycirsion. In whatever 
sense you are poor, in ope you are certainly rich^*^ 
Hope. Fm|[i the emptiness of the creature you can 
turn to the fullness of the Word, and say '^ Thy testi- 
^^ mopies have I taken as my. heritage for ever, for 
** they are the cqcndng of my heart/* You have 
now supplies, and in a little while you will be ^ Lord 
^*of all.*' Give vigour and scope to thia principle in 
all the circumstances which can awaken thy cMcern; 
Hope for stroigth equal to thy daiy. Hope for rac^ 
cour in trouble ; for assistance in duty ; for hdp in 
lieath. Hppe for a joyful resurrectiop, a bleased 

iBiimMtaBtx, fk crdwn ctf^glorjr ditt ftdeth not zvnj; 


^ jot amd pjsacb in belibtinos that yolf mat 
f* alound in hofji9 thko^oh thb poptbr o? thj|' 
."« Holt Gho^tJ 



■fc— ♦^i 

.♦ , ' 

S fe R M O N XW. 


Matt. xri. 28. 88. 

IFjur nnrw r^t A cEMtjnr mam had two sons ; jhd 


Sm i JOB 

MY Brethren, it is no very easy dung* 
to lodge an obnoxious trutir in a mind armed with, 
prejudice. ^ Lovers of themselves,*' men are averse ^ 
to the knowledge of their imperfections, and remaiii 
^ willingly ignorant'' of discoveries which woidd in-^ 
terrupt dieir pursuits^ or disturb their dumbers. 
Hence the wise have contrived a spedes of instruction 
by which they conceal their design, till the sentiment 
they wish to convey has taken possession of the mind» 
Then they strip off the disguise, and exhibit their 
meaning \ and the man finds to his surprise and con- 
fusion, that he has admitted a condusion which crim- 


ji04 tieParabUtf [fttiu xii 

inates biffiself, and that out of nis 6wn mouth lie \i 
cdndemned. He is led On unconsciously step, by step? 
till he finds his retreat tut o&i and he is corape^ted to 


He who ^\9ip^ as.newr man spik»/' excelled ih 
this as well as in every other mode of tuition, A 
memorable instance iw now before us. Ifis adver89>« 
ties had asked 6\tt Saviour, by what s»ithority he had 
commenced reformer, and had purified . the temide. 
He engages to satisfy them^ provided they will answer 
him one question, namely. Whence John derived his 
authority to preach and baptize? They found them- 
selves equally in a dilemma, whether they acknowl- 
edged the origin to be human^ or divine. ^' if we shall 
^Vsay, from. Heaven., he will say unto us, why then 
^ did ye not believe him ? But if we shaU say, of 
" men ; we fear the people ; for all hold John af a 
** prophet," Hence they affect ignorance, and re* 
maiit «lent Our Saviour perceivifig their perverse- 
ness, refuses their inquiry; and by a familiar repre* 
eentation induces them to pass judgement on them- 
9dves. '' But what think ye ? A certain man had 
^^ two sons ; and he came to the first, and faid. Son, 
" go work to day in my vineyard. He answered 
^^ and said I will not ; but afterward he repented, and 
^^ went. And he came to > the second and said like* 
*^ wbe. And he answered, and said, I go. Sir ; and 
^< went not, whether of them twain did the will of 
^« his father ? they say unto him, the first." 

The parable has a particular application, which 
may. be thus explained. John pleached to the Jews. 
His . audience consisted of two classes ; the profis^ne. 

ScR. XV.3 tbiTvM>Sons: 803 

aad die pre;jteiidi0g. Some among his hearers ^wer^ 
profligate. Such were publicans and harlots. These 
nade no profession of rdigion ; they never spake o£ ' 
the Messiah^ or hoped for his kingdom. But when 
they heard Jdb&y they received his dodlrine; were^ 
humUed by it ; and obtained repentance and remis- 
^on of sins# Others were sandimonfous. Such were 
the Scribes* and Pharisiees. They assumed extraordi^ 
nary appearances of devotion, observed every pun&Uio 
of the law, yrore a peculiar dress, used a singular gait^ 
ccuci^ed their countenances, made long prayers and 
frequent fasts, gave tithes of all their possessions, and 
pretended a high regard for the writings of Moses and 
the prophet^, who all testified of Christ/ But ^when 
bis. forerunner came and announced his speedy ap« 
proacb, they inconsistently ' rejected his ministry.; ' 
Thus far we cannot be mistaken, for we follow an in- 
fallible Guide—" Jesus sakh unto them. Verily, I say 
unto you, that the publicans and harlots go into the 
kingdom of God before you. l^or John came un- 
^* to you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed 
^ him not ; but the publicans and harlots believed 
*' him. And ye, when ye had seen, repented- not af-' 
** terward, that ye might believe him.*' 

By a more extensive allusion, it applies to the Jews 
and the Gentiles. The Gentiles were the children 
of disobedience ; tliey had lived without God in the 
world, and the way of peace had they not known ; 
but when the Gospel was published among them they 
** ob?yed from the heart the form of dodrine which 
^/ was : delivered to them : and being made free from 

^^ SMi, they became the servants of righteousness.'* 

P p 

The Jews frooi the begTnniiig were die professing peo^ 
pie of God. They had never been wanting in high- 
pnetensions and promises. When the Law was given 
en Horeb, they exdsdmed, *^a31 tfast the Lord com* 
^ mandeth us wiU we do, and be obe<fient;*' When' 
Joshua addressed them in Shediem, they a^sun said^ 
*< the Lord our God wttt we -serve; and' hid voice wfll 
^we obey.'*' « Ncverdieless, they did flatter hinfc 
^ with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their 
** tongues.^ For their heart' was not right with him^ 
^ neither were they stedfast in his covenant.*' ** What 
** shall we say then ? That the Gentiles, which fcli 
^ lowed not after righteousness, have attained to righ* 
** teousness^ even tfie righteousness which is of faith r 
**^but Israel^ which foDowed after the law of righ- 
^ teousness. Hath- not attisdned to the law of righteous- 
•* ness. Whettfbre ?*^ ^cause they sought it not by 
^ feith,. But as it* were by the works of the law, for 
^ they stumbled' at that stumbling-stone ; as it is writ- 
^^ten, behold I^ lay in Zion a stumbling-stone, and" 
^ rock of offence : and- whosoever believeth' on him^ 
^ shall not be confounded.-' 

The similitude wiU stand- a^ an illustl&tion of var& 
ous charaders to the end of time. Accordingly we 
are going to consider it, L As uolding forth 


Part L ^The Lord^ looketh from hetvfn: ke 
^beholdeth dl the sons of men.'^ Neither as his 
creatured, or as his subjeds, are they beAeath his: 

.. «v.3 tbe^Two torn. 9ttj 

iGcmcem. 1o*disphky his authority and tb secure their 
jordlart. He addresses them ia language appropriate 
to their circumstance His coisiiakd is distinguish- 
ed by three characters. It is Arr£CTioHAT^; it is 


First* It is appictionate. He speaks as unt5 
tflttldren, ^* Mr Sdk, go work to-day in my vineyard*** 
He is the lo^ly Father of all mankind ; and though 
4bx has feodered us .unworthy of his care, it has not 
destroyed out relation to him. ** We have hkd £uhers 
^< of our flesh who correded us, and we gave them 
^reverence: shall- we not much rather be in subjecp 
^ tion to the Tather of Spirit?, and live i** They weve 
only the Instruments of oyr existence ; but to Him 
the name belongs in all jits perfedion. ^^ We are his 
^^ ofipring ;" ^ we are *all the work of his hands :'^ 
irom him we derive the immortal principle $ our very 
^Quls are his ; produced by his power, and subjeft to 
ids agency. This is the common charader given of 
him in the New Testament. Under this encouraging 
representation w/d are taught to address him in prayer $ 
in this tender rdation we are to view him as dispensing 
his commands. I see the Father blencting with the 
Sovereign ; I see goodness mingling with authority ; I 
obey from love ; it is a Father I serve, and his ser« 
ivice is perfed freedom. If he employ us as children, 
he ^^ knpws our frame, s^d will remember iiisBt w^e 
^ are dust/' He wiH uot li^r upon us more than Is 
meet ; He will be kind ito our infirmities, and epare us 
as a man spaieth his own son that serveth him. ^ W« 
^ have not received the spidt of bondage again to 
^^f^U l^vt th^ spirit of adoption whereby we pry, 

SOS The Parable of [Ser. xi^ 

f' Abba Father. Wherefore thou art no more a 
?' servant but a son, and* if a son then an heir of God 
« through Christ.*' ' 

Secondly. It is Practical. For to what does 
the Father call him ? To " work' in h& vineyatrd.*' - 
I admire this Father. He does not bring up his chil- 
dren in idleness. Thotgh he be a rich man, and have 
a vineyard of his own, he requires them to labourl 
And "it is good for a man to beat the yoke in his 
^ youth." The Grand Seignior of Turkey is always 
taught some mechanical business.' The Jews, what- 
ever was their rank, always gave their sons some 
manual trade. Paul had a learned education, and 
was brought up at the feet of Gamaliel ; but he knew 
the craft of tent-making. There was wisdom in this 
l^an. It preserved the young from sloth, it fitted up 
the vacancies of life,' it prevented temptation, it madi 
them useful in society, it furnished them with a rer- 
30urce in case of redudion and distress. Adam was 
placed in the garden of Eden to dress it. The Son of 
God till he assumed his public cfaarafter wrought at 
the business of a carpenter. Heaven is all energy 
and aftivity; **they rest not day nor night." It is 
better to pursue the meanest occupation, and even to be 
a servile day-labourer, than to live in' idleness, a mere 
cumberer of the ground. Parents! early accustom 
your children to exertion and difficulties. Bring 
them up idly and delicately, and they are ruined Sdt 
this world and the world to come. I equadly pity and 
(condemn that Father, who is ashamed or afraid to say- 
to a son, " Go work in my vineyard." And what 
t hink you of God ? He assigns us our jdace of ajftion, 

Ssft. Kv.] the Two Sm$. 80lf 

and jwesciibcs the nature of our employ. It is exr 
€en0i!^'smd Tsmous. Our filigence is to be used in 
f< working oat our salvation with fear and trembling/* 
Bihner !• there is a burden lying upon thy flioulders^ 
which unless it be removed, will sink thee to the' low- 
est hell. Thou art pursued by the avenger of bloody 
and if overtaken thou wilt assuredly perifh. Thy firft 
coDcenx fliould be a.jdeliverance, a refuge. Thy firft 
(rfbrt ihould be an application to Him who came into 
the world to. save sinners. ^^ Then said they unto 
i^ UuD^ What ihall we do^ that we might woi^, the 
^ works of God ? Jesus. answered and said unto them^ 
^^ This is the wofk of God, that ye believe on him 
^V whom -he hath sent/- This is your firft care. And 
a second is like unto it— -Personal s^^ndtification.. You 
are called not only to believe, but to obey \ not tp 
ihew your faith inftead of your works, but yqv^r faith 
by your works. Many wo\ild rather consider th^ 
Gospel 7ft designed to furnifl^ a ^ubfiitiite for holiness^ ( 
than as.asyftem which requires piety and morality in 
all its part3. But how readaft thou I Where does it 
promise a salvation in sin I Where does it encourage a 
hope which leaves its possesspr impure ? '^ God has 
^^ not called us unto undeanness, but. unto holiness^ 
The grace of God, which bringeth salvation, hath 
appeared to all men : teaching us, that denying um 
godliness, and worldly lufts, vipe ihould live soberly, 
righteously, and godly in this present world/' Noc 
are you less required to serve your generation accord- 
ing to the will of God. ^' None of us liyeth to him- 
f ' self.'' Our fellow creatures have daixns upon us* 
■^Ve are to " rqoice with them that rejpice, and weep 


419 TiefsrdJetf [Sea. mf. 

*^ with them that weep f to ^^ \ov^ as tycethran f «• 
«< bear oae another^ bordensy and to Ailil t^ Jaftr 4£ 
^Xhrift." ikqd kn^nsttf infierior owr iktioM^ or 
sleader oar ^bUkks, we b^ve aft one talents Hxnr 
laave ve en^doyed it ? We hav^e all had aome maaai 
atid oppcrtunities .of wefulneas* What bcaod ha^n 
we piflcfced out of d^ fire ? What naked wtetdb fanvir 
mt doathed ? .What duU of ignoiance ham we in. 
fimAed? In what infi^ces haivewe reaembled ISni 
who ^ went about doing good,** whp plepsed not h^« 
acif, who came not to be minifbered unto^ but to min^ 
^ifter, and to givehb fife a ransom for many i 

Thirdly. It is uroent. You are caBed not only 
to kbour, but to hboor immediMely. ^ My son, go 
.^ work TO-DAT in my vineyard." The Kings bua- 
^ess requires h^e ; and this is the business of the 
King of Kings. A buuness of importance required 
hafte ; and no business can he so momentous in its 
consequences ^ this. A business requires hafte that 
<an be performed oidy in a certain time, especially if 
the season be (hort and uncertsun ; and ^ what is thy 
^ life ? It is even as a vapour th^t appeareth for a lit- 
« tie time, and then vanifflieth away." The Scrip- 
ture therefore only borrows the language of common 
sense when it says, " Whatsoever thy hand findeth to 
** do, do it with thy might j for there is no work, nor 
" device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the grave 
•« whither thou goeft.** Observe your elder Broth- 
er J he never loft a moment : " I niuft work the work 
^ of Him that sent me while it is day : the riighjt 
•* Cometh wherein no man can work.** God always 
says, " Today J** •< to-mprrow'^ is always tjie 1»!V 

gttag(( of^ tlid £iieslBjr of Smls. Aad «4mforef Be- 
Mttift iwua aft la atam^is the flioft lueoeiafid device he 
gAplofs. BecauK if ha oMft keep yofr froeb reEgion to- 
amt; bekaMTB^eilliertlAtymwiffiiMkl^ 
MHV orduittk^ ddey ^Bvfll tesrve you tnon dbfaidiiMd' 
«f dhty, and wSl obflWft y#ttr way ^Mith frefli impecfi. 
tteats* ' ^ Kow is the aoceptad tfabe, liow is the day of 
-rtwtal^ 8«fcl.4e«>om»«d<rfGod. Ig™-.. 

Pa&t H^ The MAMitiR w which it ist a&* 
#AkBBD« Tlus is' eocenqilified ia the behaviour of 
these two soli& Th^re is a' rematkafale difierence be-^ 
tweetithem* One i»tyves better thaii he promises^ 
The other |»roinises better than he proves. Of the^ 
cue it may be said that his words were evil and his^ 
afiions good i . of theother, that his words w^re good< 
and his adionseviL 

Behold the firiL No sooner does he hear the 
^mmand' of his father, than he*3nswers» ^ I will 
^ NOT f and walks off rebeHious and insulting. To^^ 
such a length of rudeness^ insolence, and presump* 
tion does sin sometimes catry men ; so that they da 
not make excuses, or (dead- only for delays, but posi^- 
tively and daringly refuse. ** They say unto * God, 
^ depart from us, for we desire not the knowledge 
** of thy ways.'* " Who have saidj with our tongue 
** will we prevail, our lips are our own : who is Lord 
^ over us ?" « But his citizens hated him, and sent a 
«« message after him, saying. We will not have this 
^ naan to reign over us." Who says this ? Yonder 
Swearer who never opens his mouth but to express 
the abomination of his heart« That Drunkard, whose 

Sie The Parable of ^ ^Ser. xt: 

inflathMe appetite,* like the horseleech, aAt% Gite, gi^i 
and never saidi, it is enoughs The Fornicate, who . 
lives in chambering and wantcmness. The man wbp 
hegie&s all the ordinances of r^fi^on, who never caHs 
upon hb name,- never hetfs hb word,- idever honours 
his sabbaths. These msdbe no\ pretences to god&nass^; 
^mbarrast'themselves - formality; wear no di»' 
guise } we no hesitation* They openly shew the image 
of their master impressed upon their forehead. They 
expUckly avow their detennination. Adidns spade 
louder than words ; and nothing tess than this is the 
dreadful language of their lives ; ^* I am for b^ 9 J wilt 
'^ run the downward road : I am resoliAed to perish/^ - 

And is it possible, that charafters Hke the^ shotrld 
ever be heatd "asking the way to Zion/' or seetf 
Walking before God •* in newness of Ufe ?'* " Such 
** were some of you : . but ye are washed, but ye are 
«* Sandifiedj but ye are justified in the name of the 
** Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.*' Yes/ 
even this son, " afterward repented and went.** 
He came to himself; refle<%on returned; looking 
back^ he saw the old man lifting up his hands to Heav- 
en, and then wiping his eyes from tears ; and he cried % 
" What have I done ? Is he not my father ? Has He 
*• suffered me to want any proof of tenderness which 
** he could shew me ? Do I thus rci^uite his kindness 
*' and his love ? What was there unreasonable in the 
** command I rejefted ? He that will not work should 
^* not eat. What is it. for a son to work in a father's * 
"vineyard? Is it not labouring for lumself? Mine is- 
** the ezpedation ; I will go." For, my Brethren, tlo 
sooner was this undutifol child reclaimed than he was 

• m 

emplQyed* He.. did not satisfy himself with retwrnqg 
an4 confessing wd bewailing hb ofimce. He aded 
repentance. He knew the wiU of his father which 
he had tiransgressed, and he repented and went. The 
one was the consequence and the evidence of tbeoth- 
er. Who could have believed the reality of his re- 
morse and the sincerity of his acknowledgeraenti unac- 
companied with reformation and obedience i 

' Are there no individuab in this assembly whose his- 
twy I have retailed to mind f Do you not remember 
your alienation from the Me of God ? But in your 
departure from him ;your minds were fSur from being 
at rest. Sometimes you thought of home ; a Father 
struck you; your rebellion appeared unreasonable; 
you condemned yourselves* These recoUedions at 
first visited you occasionally like unwelcome |;ue8ts> 
and you got rid of them. At length you found them 
quartered upon you, like so many soldiers ; resistance 
was useless. Alone, in business, surrounded with 
company, these convi^ons followed you* Tou be- 
gun to pray ; to read the Scripture ; to associate with 
his people. You brought forth fruits me^t for re- 
pentance. The change in your disposition was dis- 
covered in your conversation ; and this became the 
language of your adionsi as well as of your lips, ^^ I 
*^ have sinned ; what shsCU be done unto thee, O thou 
<* pre^rver of m€n. What I know not teach thou 
*\me : if I have done iniquity, I will do so no more. 
^' Lord, what wilt thou have me to do I Speak, Lord, 
*^ for thy servant heareth.'' 

Let us consider the second sbn. On hearing the 
command of the father ^^ he said, I go> Sir } and went 

314 the Parable qf fSEii. xv. 

** not" fiBs language was respe6Hiil, his promise wa* 
fair, and he walked forth towards the* vineyard, till he 
apprehended himself out of sight; then he turned' 
aside, loitered away his time, joined evil company, 
set off to a revel, in a little time ^Cspetit all his sub^ 
** stance in riotous living," died' in wretchedness, and 
as he e*xpired was heard to groan,- ^O that J had' 
** hearkened to a father's counsel T* 
* Ah! how many in a few years' have' We seen, Whose 
.pretensions were equally strongs whose promises 
Were e^ally flattering, whose declensions have been« 
equally grievous, whose end has been ei^ally fatal ! 

We have seen children trained up ih the nurture and^ 
admonition o^ the Lord, to whose tender minds relig- 
ibn was presented by maternal care in all^ its loveU- 
liess \ who' lisped the language of prayer and of prdse' 
as soon as they began to speak. Hiey promised 


We h^ve seen young men ingenuous, teachable, de- 
spising the bondage of corruption, hating even the 
garment spotted with the flfesh. They promised well. 

We have seen hearers under the preaching of the 
Word alarmed^ melted, almost persuaded to be chris- 
tians. They promised fair. 

We have seen men reclaimed from- various vices be- 
coming regular in their hires, and attentive to. moral/ 
and relative duties* They promised fain 

We have seen chara^rs comfaig forward eager to 
join in Christian communion, a|id layings themselves- 
under an obligation tq walk *^ in all the command- 
"ments and ordinances /of the. Lord Wameles^." 
These promised £iir. And notjung VKOuId hav# beeor 

€£1U XV. j 

"^e Two Sons. 


more uncandid and suspicious, thaa t0 have quefUon^ 
.ed their present sincerity, or their future perseverente. 
And where are they now ? See the tears of their con- 
tedious ; hear the sighs of their minifiers ; liften to 
the triumph ^ the enemy. They are turned aside 
to vain jangling ; they are so bewitched that they 
cannot obey the truth; they are walking in the 
council of the ungodly, ftancUng in the way of sinners^ 
and sitting in the seat of the scornful ; '^ for it hai 
^^^ happened unto them according to the true prov- 
^' 6rb ; the ^ dog is turned to his own vomit again^ 
^^ and the sow that was wafhed to her waUowing in th^ 
i" mire.*' 

Let us conclude by deriving an inference . from the 
«ub]ed, and by addressing ourselves to persons of two 
rclasses. The parable fully authorizes us to observe, 
that reli^ous eflfedts are often very unanswerable to ' 
expeflation ; and that the moft specious charaders 
are pot always the moft likely to enter into the king- 
dom of heaven. The sut^edt is delicate. We know 
we tread on dangerous ground, nor would we ad^ • 
vance without caution. God forbid that we fhould 
ever plead for wickedness, or intimate that immorali- 
ty is preferable to morality. Our Lord intended to 
efiabfifh no s^ch principle by these examples. He 
does not view these things as they are in their owii 
nature, but as they are frequently found in th^ir ac* 
ddental relations . a&id ccmsequences* And is it not 
undeniable that persons possessed of diftingui&ing 
privileges and moral endowments are too oftep filled 
with pride, wrapped up in self-righteousness, lulled 
to A^ by carnal security, deeming themselves safe 

Sl« The P^able rf [>8«iu • xv. 

from compartttns with those who are pccfligate ? Avt 
they not too often offended when tcM^ that they muft 
be indebted for salvation to Grace perfe&ly free and 
tin merited ; that they muft be accepted upon the same 
terms as the moft vile ; and that Jjowever excel- 
lent these things, may be in themsdl^, they afford 
them no ground of dependence, yield them no cbims 
whereof they may glory before God ? An attempt to 
couch the eyes of those who say they see ; an offer 
of pardon to the innocent ; a communication of alms 
to the wealthy would only exasperate and^disguft. But 
would this*be the case with the Uind, the guilty, and 
the poor ? It is comparatively * easy to convince the 
more criminal ; how can they deny* the charge ? to 
alarm them } how can they deny the danger ? Hav- 
ing no armour of defence, they caa sooner' receive a 
wound which will malice them cry for mercy. Con- 
scious that they have np righteousness of their own, 
they more re^ily admit thatjf saved at all, it (nufibe 
by grace- Having no ihf It^r in which tq hide, when 
they see the ftorm approaching, they willingly flee fpr 
refuge tp the hope set before them in the Gospel. 

Nor ace such trophies of divine grace unusual*-T- 
We can appeal to the p^ of hiftory ;> and* we can 
refer to our own age. We have seen the moft* unlikely 
materials subdued by divine agency to holy purpo- 
ses ; and sinners called from courses the mpft upgodly, 
whose conversion hsts awakened not only the joy 
but the aftonifliment pf their pio\is friends* I«et 
this encourage our hope ; let us consider !¥>&? pf our 
fellow-creatures as despet«^te, and dropping our. en- 
deavours and our prayers abapdon thep[). RdpprmfT ! 


.Sir. xvO 

the Two S^ns. 


let it animate thee. ^Be not weary in well doing. 
<In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening 

< withhold not thine hand : for thou knowest not wheth- 

< er shall prosper this or that, or whether they both shall 

< be alike good. . Brethren, if any df you do err from 
i the truth, and one convert him ; let' him know that 
( he who converteth a sinner frdm the error of his 

< way, $hall save a soul from death, and shall hide a 
multitude of sins." Ministers! let it encourage 

thee. " Can these dry bones live ? Prophesy upon 
^ these bones ; and * say. Come from the four winds, 
^ breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they 
* may live." " Is ^ny thing too iiard for the Lord ?" 
Parent! let it animate thee, though means have hith- 
erto prqved ineffedual, and instrudions and tears 
have been in vain y ^^I say unto you, that God is 
^^ able of these stones tp raise up children unto Abra- 

Men and Brethren, let me ask you. Which of these 
two s(His did the will of his Father ? You say, and you 
say justly. Both of them were culpable ; the one was 
rude, and the other false. But which on comparison 
do you {Mrefer ? You say, and you say truly. The first. 
On what principle? Because his adions were better 
than his words, and his latter end fairer than his be- 
ginning. Yes; better is a late penitent than an old 
formalist. Yes ; more desirable is the condition of 
this returning sinner, trembling at God's word, bro- 
ken^hearted with a review of unprofitable years, and 
rteolving to redeem the time by future zeal, than the 
state of yonder professor who has sat under the word 
tiH he IS past feeling, h<||Rmring God with his lip while 

vSlS TbePaAAlerf £Sfi!L xr. 

his heart is fair from him, having a name to live while 
lie is dead, spying perpetually by appearances I go, but 
sever a6hially talking one step in the ways of godliness. ^ 

But I have another question ; Which of the^e two 
>! ^ons do you at this time resemble? It is undeniable 
ithat you haye had calls from Qod. Tour duty, and 
the consequences of inattention have been plainly set 
i3efore you. He has spoken by his creatures. He ha^ 
addressed you by his providence. Affl^ons have had 
a voice. Fire has jmshed put of the brambles to which 
you repaired for shelter* The gourde whose shade 
refreshed you has withered away. It was a broken 
reed upon which you leaned ; it disappointed your 
hope, wd pierced you through with niany sorrows. 
Sickness told you that jqvl were mortal. The deatl^i 
cf others reminded you of your own ; and loud spake 
che silent graviC. Many a remonstrance, many a war- 
ning you have had from .conscience. Fronfsabbath to 
sabbath you have heard the Gospel. )ifinisters, some 
in harsher scents, and some in milder language, have 
laboured to persuade you. No, you cannot plead igno- . 
ranee ; you do not want motive and encouragement:. 
jSuffer me then to ask, you. Which of these mbs 4fr . 
scribes you ? 

* Are you saying with the first— ^« I vjrill not ?" What 
irreverence ! ^^ A son heareth his &ther, and a servant 
^' his master : |f then I be a ^xh^ wl^ere is my bon* 
^^ our ? and if I be a master whtfa is my fear ? saith 
th^ Lord of Hosts." What ingratitude! "Hear, 
O ye heavens, and g^ve ear, Q earth : for the I/>rd 
hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up chil- 
dren, and tl^y have t0SS^ against v»f^ ^^ Do 

^ ye thus requite tlie Lord, O foolish people and un- 

^ wise ? Is he not thy Father that hath bought thee ? 

*< hath he not made thee and established thee V^ What 

ibadness ! If you abide by this detehnination you are 

ifhdone ;* ** because of these things cometh the wrath of 

^ God upon' the children of disobedience*^ Have 

ybu duly considered the work you decline ? It is z 

'service the most reasonable ; the most honourable ^ 

the liibst pfeasant ; the itaost profitable i it is *' profit- 

<< able unto all things, havthg the promise of the life* 

•^ that now is, and of that which is to come/'' Here 

we cannot labour dn vain. The reward is sure ; the 

recompense is glorious. Nor are we called to labout 

without assistance. He who employs us has engaged 

to make his strength perfect m our weakness, andta 

fender his grace sufficient for us. Ta which we may 

^d, that it is z work the most indispensable \ it is the 

one thing needful ; and it is at the peril of thy soul 

and thy eternal happiness to say^ •* I will not.** But? 

I Have said this, and lived accordingly/ ^^ O that 

^^ my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of 
*^ tears.** Retiuning sinner, there is hqpe in Israel 
concerning this thing. There is forgiveness with Him, 
and* repestance secures it. 

Raise thy downcast eyes and see 

What forms his throne surround ; 
They, though sinners once like thee^ 

Have foil salvBtknti found.^* 
*^H« hift pAOkois to impart» 

Graoo to »i?e thee from thy iears : 
See the Iqto that iilW his heart. 

And wipe away thy tears. ' 

T&y present distress? is • ple(%e of k pr^paratioa- 


S90 The Pang^ of [Sfiiu xir/ 

for the dbcovery of his forgiving love. He rqjented 
and went. Oo and do likewise, and encourage thy^ 
self under every gloomy fear by representations the 
most appropriate and tender. **I have surely heard 
^ Ephraim bemoaning himself thus. Thou .hast chas- 
^' tised me, and I was chastised as a bullock unaccus-' 
^ ^ tomed to the yoke ; turn thou me, and I shall be . 
" turned, for thou art the Lord my God. Surely af- 
^*ter that \ was turned I repented: and after that J 
*^ was instructed, I smote upon my thigh : I was asham- 
•* ed, yea even confounded, beqiuse I did bear the re- 
** proach of my yoke. Is Ephraim my dear son ? is 
^^he a pleasant child? for since I ^ake against him 
*'l do earnestly reniember him still; therefore my 
•' bowels are trou1>led for him ; I will surely have 
** mercy upon him, saith the Lord/* " And he said, 
^ * I will arise and go to my Father, and will say unto 
* * him. Father, I have sinned against Heaven and be- 
" fore thee, and am no more worthy to be called thy 
^* son : ftiat|l& me as one of thy hired servants. And 
** he arose and came to his Father j but when he \vas 
yet a great way oflF, his Father saw him, and had 
companion on him, and ran, and fell on his neck,, 
and kissed him— * And said to hissi^vants, bring<forth 
*^ the best robe, and put it on him ; and put a ring on 
^^ his hand, and shoes on his feet. And bring hither 
*^ the fatted calf, and kill it ; and let us eat and be mer- 
f^ ry. For this my son was dead, and is alive again ; he 
** was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry." 

Are you saying with the second — ^^ I go, .Sir ?*' This 
is well ; but, O beware of insincerity. Consider se- 
riously the solemn profession you make. I go, Siri- 


8sR. xv>] /i&« Tu^^SmH. i|2l 

but renumber to wliom you say this i z Being, ^4km 
^es ure as a ^oie of fire, and. who desireth truth io 
the inward pirts* Thou art not lying unto man^ buC 
.unto God. Ifo, ^r! But remember that the vows 
€£ God are upon you ; that you have raised the expeo* 
tation of*your friends and foes; that heaven, earthy 
and him are lcx>Iphg for i praAice which will verify 
your pretensioas ; and wiU you tell them all, ^* I am 
." only— a liar-^a hypocrite ?" I gp. Sir ! But remem* 
ber thafc^your doom will be determined not by/* ^ir 
<< speeches*' and a ^^ show of godlii||^," but by yoi^r , 
iftions and your lives. ^'Nbt every one that saith 
^,unto me^ liord, I.ord, shall enter into the kingdom,!^ 
^^ t)f heaven, but he that doeth the will of my Father 
"which is in hcteiven/* I go. Sir! Biit remember 
nothing is so dangeroils to the soul as false dealing 
with God;. that no charader is so rarely converted ^ 
as a £dse professor ; ..thit no state is so tremendous as 
dw end of an apostate. I go. Sir ! But remember^ k 
is the language of God, *^ if any man draw back^ my 
" sobl skdl have no pleasure in him." <^ Fdr it is im* 
"possible for those \dio were once enlightmed^ and . 
^ have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made par- 
^.takers of the Holy Ghost^ and have tasted pf the 
^ good/Word, and the powers of the world tp cgine^ 
"if they shall fall away, to renew them again uptp ra- 
poAtanee ; seeing they Crucify to themselves ihe^Son 
of God afresh, i^ndput him t^ aiP open shan^. Bul^ 
^Befeved, we are persuaded better things of you^ 
** and things that acconptpany saLvation^ thpugh we thua 

*^ sneak" 

R R 

^ ; 



S E 1^ M d N XXri. 



9ViB/ Am ro viMtinrBj xtroiidBDGE p ahb ro knowledge tEtma-* 


MY, Brethren, it b a very Msy and IJkf 
& a t«ir)5 difficult tbing to be a Christian. It is a verf 
^y tdUng to be a noaunal Christian } but it is a irarf 
difficult thing t& be a real one. It is a* very easy ^^ittg 
to be a modem Christian ;. but it is a very difficult 
thing to be a scripture one. Do not isoagine that we 
mean to trifle, or advance a paradox ta' aWaken y0ur 
attenfeioa at the bq;inning of a^' disconne. We speaks 
^ the words of truth and soberness/' It is undenia- 
He that we have many Christians aiiiong us who are 
itrai^r* eiren to eomnon decency and mos^dity, 
<^Mng ahMoinaUe, and diiiobcdiMt, and to ntirf 
^'gOGid iMoric veprobiie.^' OA^n/mMkm a nwb 
striAer profesdon ; but, alse! their ChristiaaStyln^es 
them as it inds thett, and in their livea tkere is «rv 



$ttj0 differeaoe disctrmble between tlitm and the p^Oi* 
pie of the world. Their tempers are unrahdued; 
jtbieSr ^toiigues are unbriiSed; ^tbey mlod eartU| 
^thm^;^ they aake no sacrifices, no ejeecttoM* 
Xheir hope is a ttfebss eqspedNktioiu T^mc iaixk is % 
s^eme !of doftrtne vUcfa they hwt hid asleep in the 
pftind, ^and which never disturbs or stimulates them.' 

Bat is this the religioti of the New Testament? 
Search the Scriptures. Observe the de&ieattons c^ 
the Gospel, and compare yourselves with them. In 
these a precession is found tp mean a pradical dissent 
from the spirit and manners of the world. The hope 
which maketh not aaliamed Is hdld forth as^fifjing 
the possessor from the love of sin and the dominion 
of sense ; and the £dth by which we are justified and 
saved, is cUstinguished as a vital and a vlgoraw prin* 
ciple, drawing afiter it a train of graces and good 
wotks. ^tness the language kA our apostle. ^^ And 
^beside this, giving aB difigence, add to your lakh 
^^ virtue; and to virtue, knowledge; and to knowl- 
^ e%e, temperance ; and to temperance, patience ; 
^ and to patience, godliness ; and to godHness, broth'- 
" erly kindness ; and to brotherly kindness, charity.*' 
Christians, these words spedfy, I. The additions 
which you are to make to your fafth. And, H. Ptre^ 
Kribe the means by whidi you are to make thepi, 

i. The apDsitodMs not ««hart Cfafiadane to aeek 
jifwfiMlh. Th|a hesupiMMes then to poiaess' already* 
He addresaoi iJiem as bdieiwrs» and calls upon thMa 
to purmie a course worthy of their faith, correqpond* 
iac witb their Hikt ^^ tff w)iif}> tiMK ^9^ W^^ 

M4 QMaian BlH^nee^ ^Seh; xm^* 

them. '^*tle«iember Christians, the wcMfty nsnti^bf 
^« which yott we calM- Cofidder the tendency of 
n^ princiiries you prdfess to believe. Yon l»rae. 
<^ embraced the Gospd ; it layk aA bhfigatiofi Ufon 
i^you to deny all «ingodtiness and worldly hists, and 
^ to live sobcvly, T^teoualyy and godly in the preaM 
<*\BBt worM. Ton say yoa Yxsm £didi; bi^.lakk' 
^ without works is 4ead, heti^ done. Faith reaom*' 
^ bles at fouiidatt«n» of h^h importance in case ^ 4 

V buildings but U9db» if no •snpfiBsi:rudcQre be reatod* 
**It 16 only a fc^eginnipg, wliich <S nothing without 
1* progress. What are dear notioas uoleBa they influr 
^<ence; or pift)per motivu^ unless they impd? Abra« 
f< ham had Aith^ and he <^red;itfp* baac ; looses had 
^ futh, and he esteemed the i;eproacl| pf Chi^ ^neafei 
f^er riches than the tpasures of ^^sjpt* Abelatid 
^ Noah had faith, but it wag belief alive, and in nxth 
^ tion ; it led the one to sacrifice, and the other to 
^ b^ld. If you know these thingi^ happy ace ye if 
f^ye do them* Ton hatve received the truth, now 

V wdk by it. You are ^und in do^bwe, lie ^o now 
*^in pradice. To]^ are o^odox, now b^ holy, de« 
^< fraud no man, speak evil of no nun* You have 
{< faith, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue^ 
'' knpwled^ ; and to knowledge, tempenmf^ ; and tQ 
''temperance, patience} an^ to patience,, brother- 
'*ly kindne^r ^nd to brotherly kindpess, charity.'* . 
Such b the meaning of t^ apostle ; and tl^us we con- 
ceive he would have explained himsi^ had he beea 
fiiug in our day, and called to address «ome of oui 

The #rst addition whidi he requires of you as be-. 

ttifrcn hn^9^M* ' Biit k does not hm^ sigmfy good^ 
B6iB far gtntral ; {t is IxliiMdbtely ' dtstiagui^ied from 
the 9iarkms CKCtUeBdet ifiduded ia the common 
acoeptatiiMi of the word* It thereficire express^ $ome 
IMtkubr quafity ; and bf refievring to the firedc 
Mad Latin unitiers, \ne can soon dettrnnne wh«t it is» 
They 'mean by ia Fortitude^ Goorage, My Brethrw^ 
thbi^ndffe in th9 wimh of your ChristiaQ c^mwf 
wMk bt imod iadifpenaably necessary^ You live kx a 
vcMdtmfnenAf to religion.' Topi are called to vari« 
oua-dntieB, in the dischaige of which you will meet 
fmdi^ cypQgitiona. and dJACouragomttUs the. most painfiil 
ud trying. It. will be f^uxki. m e^y thing to dspy 
yoinn^es, and take i)p your cros9 ; . to plpc^ QVt ;a 
ti|^^efe» aiui tq cttft off a; righ^ hand ; iM^iig both th# 
potfaota and the 9gwta too. It will be found no very 
eaey thing to encenrnter opinion:} to incur the frowiM 
of wrmdSdm^ theseompf. superiors^ the ridicule of 
the nnridtudQ } to feel yourselnres. in a small 4nd de^ 
{deed minority ; to have your /designs suspeAed, your 
a^MHiB mtasepfesentedy youp very virtues trans&rjn«4 
iM0 viceay and where you- have deserved beft of your 
feUowwcreatur^ to be mo(^ copdepined by them* 

Some of these dafficuilies indeed might be avoided if 
yon vtme only to Bs reKgious and not to .apbeaa. so. 
But not to oKserw that it {s imposflible to conoeat rdi^ 
gion m numberkfls infiances w^n k is £uriy reduced to 
praAice, we wifh you to remember that you arerequir«^ 
td to be open a^id explicit ^ you are conmianded to 
V iet your light flme before men ; to ^^ confess with 
^^ the month/' as well as to ^' belieye with the heart ; - 
fo «< holdftft/' TU» ytm feith, Inst Ae '« profefsiw of 

m Ckrirtim mii^im f^ 

f^oB tho Lxxif lide;'' but t^ be aAi?9 w bk snmot^ 
f^ ijwQ^up iw Um agaMift the eyU dowi, eod ihmi^ 
^ UWP ^ j^io^ agaii^ the wgr]^ q^ iqiq«kf •'' .< 

If we trace tUans to di^ mgia* wefluA indt « 
ihowiand evHs s|Nrfa]^ig, not from igiiorauMe,'biit toMr*' 
avdka FUate anukn^ed f Savioop of wtete kmcih; 
MKj he w»s coqiciou, b ca i ne ef thti Jeers. lAtnf 
0f the Phariseea *' beHemd an him ; fantteKdecftdM*' 
'< ims hum left d^ey fioukl be {mt ant of «fae.i;^b»i 
^ gegoe/' Tbe disc^des were afraid and fruaooil 
him, iPeter trembled end djtnied him. it jeoertnr €9 
the Iniueiioe o£ tbie aame cause, that perscKUf c|n bM 
the truth in.nm^teoosaess ^ refuse to hear the iftfry 
dofirines they believe ; change with every company 
ill which they are found ; hear the name of ^od bbs-^ 
jphemed, and the QospA vififiod, and *^ ^k «s men 10 
^ whose mqnths tboeis no r^oof/* Bnt holy couf^ 
age. will raise a ram above ihb influence. It w9l pto? 
Aice in him a dignity whtdi seorni evety HieaM ceni? 
glance ; a ^rmness Vhich j^ves dedsldn ttid ams%- 
ency to Ins chara£ber; a detenmnation, not incftse4 
to malpe singnterity his aim, but to walk by those inAsn 
which will unevoidaMy render it a eeme^ieBce ; a 
boldness to follpw his convi^ons whenver th«f mef . 
lead him, andinflexibiy to^msefereintlfepedioC dut 
ty, regardless of the repcoach he nu^^Mdmre, ordM| 
losses he may suftain. ' 

A second addition is>ob. And dMs WPf 
properly follows the former. It serves to dmreAsri 
iae^ and qualify the courage of the bdiever. k re^^ 
nniids us, thjtt it makes him opm, but not oieuCatieue | 


Wmif^ Ml not dialtagkig and wtuitlh^; dedded/ 
iMrt: mn vidhmt v bold, b#t fiot nfli anfl incdnsider- 
,sfli« it 4eidlM IMP tliat dott)r»ge is a foite wludi Wi£.\ 
^kmi & tor cisplay / jdoulrag^ may urge lis to ttnder- 
ijfkfiibmty Imt. judgnentr-is ta-JUHagi^ k. It may 
tmpf uaokii^iii our oMney but lamarkdge is to «k. 
a^a tfaMToad } d|dwrwisex>itr akkBaakm <«ittlozdy ItaaA 
^>aftray» and tihe #wiftar oitir q»ed» die greatar^wW 


:MKi hanoa'ituvill'be eaay' to distalblfaie the nature of 
fids ii^ftattfiGatkni. Il b pra&kal knowledge ; it if ' 
H/lm vmamODCfoiif mean by j^mdence, ^idi is kaatm^ 
Is^ api4i»d' to adkm. ft it laiiat P^alr recoomiendg'' 
ipfMn Jbanyii^ ^ Be ye not wnriae, tet tfnderftanding' 
^ #Iiat tlie JviU o# ibe LoiAi is* #ilk e»etiaKpeaiy,^ 
^aotMifisoiabiiias ^i&aa. ¥iniHc & wMom tofraiFda^ 
^ tltfem that are * wtehoiiEty i>edeamiiig dse time.** It is 
^pdiat Soloinon dnjmns 'wben he says^ ^ let thine eyes^ 
^loek i;ig^ on, and thine aydlids look ftcadt before' 
^ th^fit. Keep aoond ^sdom atid discretion $ so shiH 
^'ibfY be life nnto thy ^oul mA grace to thy neck.^ 
^ than shak thon walkin thy way safidy^ and tby foot 
^< Ihall not ftumble^ When ti»a fieA dmta them flttte- 
*^ sot be afr^ i yea, Uma Huk lie dom^n, and thy 
da^ ahaftbe mmit.'' 

• TIm kind erf knowledge resnks prindpa% from el:-' 
pamnce and < obeerval^^s, atid he is blamable indeed 
who does not grow wiser as he grows older, and wh<> 
4aea not ttialte every day a correftion of the former. 
Ottfown htfltory aferds us soaie ol the beft materiak 
t04ra|irow and ambdliat ^afr ehar acter^ There, be^ 
ligJiaadhM, Ir«B iiiifwiMd* By that trifle Twa3«<*-' 

bMttfMtofi^f- Herel.dadiedon aix)(jb.aAll»l4ll)J^, 
taved' flM^ Our rashnfiw ahould. tea<^ th^ JW^ 
ne« of wisdom. We shoi^d derive ^^wfgtk 6cqfx quit 
ip^aliiesMB, aii4 fimmess from oor fall& 

B«t^^alMi iriutt ouchbecs m there .wipw mhiom tifef^ 
. cohtiaaagcef trf JiCt/t «id sdi 4iietm of improveiQiQiit, 
Jti»i tote chrmm Mny» . Tliey liave eyx^ bot thqr 
me inot'^ . esp^ ksure tbey,^ bet they Jbearnot. . Thfflf^ 
4pasa through a coootry full of iostru^ ve scenes^ a,iid }f^t 
tneetbg o^eureac^ bat> tb#y tp^yj^l in a hearse. 
\4iid.hfre n^i«y re]^;ioiH, people, seem pfjfuJwr^y 4^ 
-SemA ; 4hey peq^itatty .remi»d us of the .ot)mnratiqp^ 
*^ the chSdren of this world are .wiser in. thoir geoenu 
^< tioa than the ^ildre^ of Ijght/' They ar^alway^ 
KO^mitg ipom on^ pKblic sEssemUy to aodther, and are 
Qei;9C aloqe. They bgix much» and think tittle. , flven 
(ipe<kiad of information they obtain, often serves pnly 
lio draw them away ficom things of imimediate concern^ 
and to disqualify them for the duties of the stations in 
which they move. With their eyes stretched to the 
ends of the earthy or rdving among the stars, they gpr 
on n^dless of any thing before them, and fall over 
<very stiiinhiing-Uock:in the road. 

Whereas ^ the wisdom^ of the prudent is to undftr- 
^ stand his way.'' " The prudent man looketh wepr 
^ to hii going/' He draw» down his knowledge. frpm 
iipecuhftion, and uses ft in common fife. He j^^g^ 
of the value of Ins notions by their utitity. ..Hefstod*- 
ies his character and'condition^ ^a^examines his 4li^« 
gers, his taints, his oppoftunlliab. ^ettairks.emi^ 
as they arise, and has a plQH to nceivm them»v ih 
distinguishes times, places^ txANH^^ ifedisas^flf 

bckh when to ke^ sSence^ and when to %eak« He 
reproves with skill; He ^ves with judgment. He 
^ spproves things that are excellent/' 

Thirdly. You are to avcnd ihteutevlahw. There 
is a ^ense in which this word may be apiplied M the 
mind as weU as the body. Far we are 
think soberly; to keep aH otlr passions Within due 
bounds; to moderate our desires to enjoy cutUy 
pieasdres, and our aiixieties to acquire worldly posses* 
sions. Our Saviour therefore commands his diftifdes 
^ to take heed lest at any time their hesltts should 4)e 
^^ Overcharged/' hot only ^ with surftiting and dniak* 
^^ enness/* but also ^^ the caifes of thts^ life, arid so thU 
^ day should come upon them unawares<^ The mo* 
tive is as pertinent as k is awful; for if we are 
^ to live in expedition of this important event, and are 
to be so habitually prepared for it as not to be taken 
by surprise when it comes ; it k necessary that we 
should be temperate in all things^ 

The word however principally refers to moderation 
In satisfying our bodily appetites. But can it be^need^ 
fill to enlarge upon a subject like this in a Christian 
^congregation ? Surely something far short of the pure 
and exalted system of the Gospel would be sufficient to 
refbain men from degrading thems^es bdow the 
beasts that petvahi Surety we need not interpose the 
authority (rf God, and reveal the misery he has preparr 
ed in another world, in order to keep them from be- 
ing gluttons and ^drupkards. A^nst this. Heathen- 
ism ezdaims ; Nature rises up ; Health preaches. In* 
' temperance ia amjgned and punished here. It im« 

.^overtsh^ owr diwurostances. It beggars our fami- 

S a 


SXf christian BUigena. |j5siu xini«. 


lies. It roidef s the body hxj and sickly, amd breeds* 
^manner of <&ease8« It besots the mind, * and stupid 
« fies reason ; it impedes ^with- filthy crudities the way** 
through winch the spirits should pass, and bemint 
the soul so that it drags on heavily : it unfits for «very 
daty, and prepares for evmry siiw Surdy oae half ctf - 
diis is enough to makse ypu.flee aU intempfurance y 
«ad to lead you not only to avoid the grosser excesses^ 
o£ this infiuiiy, but ta abhor every. degree of approach 
tok»*Shuii thwaficxre those ^Vwhose God i^ their belly, 
« and whose (^ory is in their shame." Scorn the bon. 
dage of corruption* Disdain to be the slaves of a{Mun^ 
pered apf^etite. Never advance to the bounds* of things 
kwf 1^ Beware of beginnings^ and the excuses which, 
would , authorize them. ^ But put ye on the Lord 
\^ Jesus Christy and make not pcovision for the flesh ta 
«« fidfil the lusts thereof/' 

' Fourthly. Tou are to add to* your temperance pa- 
Ti£NC£. There is an obvious and striking relatioh be- 
tween these.' The one requires us to bear, the other 
tb forbear. The one regards the good things, the oth- 
er-the evil things of the world.. By temperance we 
^B pr^erved under the smiles of prosperity, and by 
patience we encounter the frowns of adversity. These 
v»fo therefore fomish us ^* with the armour of righ- 
^ teousness on the right hand and on the left.'' AjdA W|^ 
the one is as necessary as the other. For you wiH not • 
be assailed from one 6ide only. When the weather 
is fair, the road agreeable, and the adjoining groveS 
and meadows very alluring, you are in'^danger of paus* 
ing and wandering; but the storm driving in yout 
face, and your feet inking in deepr ititre where there 


Sim. arnr] GbrhHan DUigence* Btt 

iti nb'Staadtng; Toavrill sctfnetioies be dbccmtaged b^ 
cso$e^rthewxfi ^estion Aether you ase ri^ht» and 
debate wUb yoorsdlves whether to advance or turd 
bade. Tea, GfartstiaDay you wiH have need. of pa« 
tience, and perhaps of tmxsh more than you are awards 
.Tou knoirnot what a day wiH bring forth. '^ Ricfap 
^^* may ^ make to themselves wings, and flee away.*? 
.Your "friends may deal deqeitfuUy with you as a 
^brodk.'' Yourinrcsent comfcurts fliay become your 
greatest troubles. Triak whidi so fya: from exped* 
ing never entered your thoughts, may suddenly arise. 
Has not this world been always a vale of tears ? Did 
any of your brethren who were before you. escape sort 
orow? Are you not assured that it ts through much 
itrilHilatien you must enter the Kingdcmi? But padenct 
wiU prepare you for ev^T" cha^png scene, and every 
suffering hour. What it cannot reaiove it* wiH alfevU 
ate; what it cannot diminish, it wpl. strengthen lyou 
4o bear. It will produce a composure which will d,- 
Iqw you to discover every favourable circumstance in 
your situation ; a silence which ,will enable you to 
.hear every n^e^sstge of the Rpd» ^ Let: patience have 
^^ her perfeft work, that ye may be p^rfed): and eipp 
*?. tir^, lacking nothing.'* 

Fifthly. GoDi^iNBss is ind|spensiiUe^ £oun^ 
«nd Ftudence, Ten^perance. and Patience, would be 
no Chrifitiam qualities^, if in the ezerci9e-of thevi 
/we were, net influenced by 6uitaUe regards to iGod; 
Without .tfais^ r^Qpreidce, our religion, is nothing 
more than mortify;, our prance has no adeqiiate 
.prindptef otfr dmlies sird . in -vain as to their aiccep»- 
^ance^ atid .^rcca^kios, i^i^bs^^ stifeh^ss^ irk^Mne 

$$» Girisitan DiBgemti [Snu jn^ 

m to ihdr ]>erfi)n«Mce» Vfhmi we ue .gfl»»rAa^ iyjr 
the autlfority of Crod, and aiake his w^rd our rafey-aidr 
his glory our aim, we pkase him; aad tfamiffa our 
lerviees are attended with maay impcrfedmu^ t|wy 
are accepted. When we loiw »nd fear hitn, iriam wa 
tealsze his presence, confide ia his merqr^ iaqpkice lus 
gr^ce, and maintain continual commmiion y^xh* Mm 
through the fiedtation of his Son and fay the influ- 
ences of Iu8 Spkit, our woric becoaMs Our pri'vflege ^ 
an is enlivened} all is secured. Im this GodMneBs 
OQBsists ; it is to brings God into every part ^f fife- 
and rel^qQ) to make|e alpha aiul onmiga of 
all we db. Though moraUty is distinguished from 
godliness, it always and inseparably attends it; an^* 
he never peffbrms his dtity towatds God, who lives a»- ' 
righteously towards man : ^' If a nuua say^ I loveGodt: 
*^ ^^d hate^h his brother, he is a liar ; for he $hat lovethtj 
^<npt his brotl^r whom.he hath seen, hogpir. can he lote ' 
^ Go4 whom he hath not seen f And this cQinmaod" ^ 
^ ment have we frqm htm, Tl;athe w|w> love^ Go;!^ 
f^ love hb brother also/' Hence 

• ■ « 

We are to add tQ Godliness, brotheixv kikBt 
NESS. 4nd who are our brethren? Alt Christiais. 
However they may differ from us, in th^ age^ their 
dress, their features, they s|re all children of the saSie 
Father, members of the same ^umlyi heirs of the same . 
grace, travellers towards the same heavenly country^ 
They have therefore dain^ upqn us ; and we are tci - 
aid and relieve them. '^Wl^osO hath this world's 
^ good, and seelh his brother have need, and shutteth 
^ lip his bcrwftls of QOApassioo from (dm, hbw dweK- 
'^eth tiie:l9ve «f God hi Ipto? SJbt us tatil k)^ in 

fS^nu vn.2 Cbriiiian DiUffnus s^<| 

^mtfi^ iiijrtiarlp loAgiie, but in deed and in tt^th.^ 
yUkgi am our lorethrdn; aM mankind. ^ Ood bath 
^^.nade of one bfeod*' att the nations ci the earth ; 
clief poswsa the sam^ powers of conscience^ reason,' 
^nd immortality ; they are capable of the same pririi^ 
l&g^ '% need the same succours \ are liable to the same 
8l0ittioiB« Hence \m% good- will tothe wh<^ humair 
i;ece£niriies-thetiaiD5 and becomes *Hhe bonded per^ 

«-*To Brotherly kindness, cHAltiTY. Thus we are 
^^.the diildien^ t>f our Father 'which is in heaven : Ibr 
^ he taoketh Yas siui to rise on the evfl and on th^ 
^'good^ and sendeth rain on the just and on the un- 
^1 juft." 'Itius every dispute concerning the extent or 
jiaakation of benerolence is settled. As we have oppor-^* 
tuuity. We are to do g^od unto all men, especially^ 
lubto THTM who JMre of the household of faith, 
^* To some indeed I am peculiarly bound, to few only 
^ c^ 1 t)e personally ^seful ; but my kind wishes and 
^* phiyers extend to every individual of the human 
iV race. By the law of the Gospel I am required to 
i^dierish in my bosom thos^ sentiments of benevo^ 
^f lence mlnch are qnly hindered from being universal 
f ^ ia their excircise by inabOity and necessity." 

Thus you are to add to yout faith, virtue ; to vir- 
tue, knowledge ; tP knowledge, tetnperance j to tem- 
perance, patience; to patience, godliness; to goifll- 
ness, brbthJerly kindness ; and to brotherly kindne^, 

charity. Btit let us, 

i. » »• 

il« inquire h«ir .this is to be acoonqdlshed. Tike' 



*:S34 Gbrtsiian Diligence. X.^wti.^xvu 


To excite you to this, we would renrind yott, Aaf 
these things deserve your deligence, that dfligencewM 
-secure thetn, and that they cannot be attained witib- 
out difigence. 

Firft. These things deserve youk diligence. 
It is pitiat5le to see men employing their zeal and con<^ 
suming their ftrength upon trifles; but this is the 
case with regard to the pursuits of thousands. You 
may ask them as they rulh by, ** Wherefore do ye 
spend your money for that which is not bread, and 
your labour for that which satisfieth not ?*' None 
of these things can reKeve them in their greateft ^• 
•gencies, promote their chief interefts, reward them 
for their toil, or indemnify them for the sacrifices they 
make. But this cannot be said 6f sfnritual blessings 
and graces. These are in the sight of God of great 
price. They are necessary to man. They purify his 
passions, and tranquili'ze hb consdence. Ttiey en- 
rich, they dignify him ; they are his perfedion. They 
make him happy in himself, and render him a bks- 
eingtoall around him. Conceive how striking and 
how useful a single individual would be if seen, xhxA 
: adorning the doArine of God our Saviour in att 
things ; not only a believer, but corageous ; not 
only corageous, but wise ; xK)t only wise, but self- 
.denying, and gentle, and fnous ; and all this foUowed 
by kindness and benevolence ! What then would a 
. number of these charaders aocompliih as they passed 
along through life ? They would look Sbrdi u Urn 
morning, fair as the moon, . dear as the sun, and fier- 
liUe as an army with ' bannart j bearing ^dow» re« 
- proadi, . disacoiiDg infid^ty^ pvttiisg «o nkooe the i|;t 



Snu xyt^, Christum DSipna* 9AS, 


^(Hiliflb aoeoy aiul confirainmg.behoklN^ to 
I^IPlify God in the day of visitation. 

^S^EOfidiy* Difigpnce will invalliably secure 
ifcese thin^ In the career of worldly good, many 
ruo» but few obtain the prize ; and the race is not M 
the swift, nor the battle to the ftrong, neither yet 
bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of under- 
fiaoding, nor yet &your to men of skill ; but time and 
chance bapixmeth to thent all. Fame depends upon 
^ ccmibination of drcumftances, which may never re- . 
turn. A despised rival may suddenly rise upv smd car- . 
ry off an acquisition \^hxch you had been pursuing in^ 
Qessantly through life. Though the sower sowethin- 
hope, many things may fruiErate his espedations.* 
^ But to the righteous there is a sure rewaird*" ** He 
^f that goetb forth weeping, bearing {nrecious seed,. 
<« jBiall doubtless return again with rejoicing, bringing^ 
<« his ifaeaves with him/^ ^^ Ask, and it fliall be given 
*^you; seek, and yefhaUfind; knock, and it Ihsdl 
'^ he opened unto you ; for every one that asketb, re- 
^ ceivethr : and he that seeketh^ findeth, and ta him. 
^ that knocketh, it shall be op^ed." In the world 
tben spare no pains, decline no difficulty, fcar no ha& 
ard, though they have nothing more than probability 
to exdte and encourage them ; and shall we, be insen- 
sible and motionless, who have nothing kss than a&u^ 
al certainty ? 

Thirdly. There is ko attaining these things 
wlTOouT ^geace. Diligtnce is indispensable, 

Indiq)ensa^le, if we appeal to anak)gy. Tou must 
labout even (m ^ the meat that perisheth/' ThwmgE 
n^at a raocdtthm of pirocess does yovrbrtadipatebe^ 

S56 Cbrkiian Diligence. ISun^xn^ 

fore it be pref^ared for use! The sam^^may be uaA of 
raiment j of trade ; of science j of every tiring rafci- 
able and excellent, you do Hot expeA to gain tliem 
without diligence ; you would not esteem smd priw 
them if you could. 


<( Oo eattii BCMight pvecioas » dlitctiaMy 

^ But what is painful too. . 
^ Bt travail, and TO travail bom, 

« Onr sabbaths arc but few.*' > * 

><»lQ]di8penaable, if we appeal to the eharadier of a 
Gbristian* He is a. merchant, a scholar, a husband* 
man, a traveUer, a. soldier. The anxiety of the mer- 
chant, the aqpplication of the scholar, the hardy toil of 
tka husbandman, the wearying progress of the travel^ 
kr, the painlul exercise of the soldier, are images 
which ill accord with indolence and ease. 

"Indispensable, if we af^ieal to the pf onuses of tho 
Gospd. These all require it, encourage it, produce 
k. h God said to work in Us to will and to do of hi» 
own good pleasure ? It is made a motive to induce ug 
to worie out our own salvation with fear and trem* 
fa&ig. Has be eng^d to renew our strength ? It b 
i^hok we are waiting wpm him ; this is the condittQru 
It is that we may mount up with wings as eagles, that 
we may run and not be weaay, and walk and not faint ; 
this is the design. And if the promises of divine grace 
do not supeisede the necessity of diligence, what else 
can render it needless ? 

Awake the^, my fellow Christiaiss, and be zealous* 
Be not satisfied with yosr pvoseiit attainments i but 
fcrgettiiq; the thmg* which are fa^hiody aivl neachiog 
forth unto those things wUcfr are before^ be ever press* 

il)g.tomi^,thf qiark for the prize .of the hidi a|U< 
vut of trod in Christ Jesvs. Others are ambitious. 
a>vetous, a&ive. The learned are adding to their in- 
telle&ual treasures } the ' honourable are adding to 
their splendour and distindions ) the rich are adding . 
jiouse to house, and field to field ; and none of thein 
ssdth, ^' It is enough/' And iove you no concern to 
go from strength to strength, to be changed from glo* 
iry to glory, to shine more and more unto the perfect 
day ? Will not tou add to your faith, yirtiie ; and to 
virtue, knowledge; and tb knowledge, tempentnce$ 
and to tempertoce, patience; and to patience, godli- 
hess ; add to godliness, brotherly kindness ; and to 
brotherly kindness, charity \ 

Here, my Brethren, call forth all yoiur diligence; 
tiere is a prize which is able to' reward it, which will 
sLssuredly crown it ; but which it is impossible to ac- 

' quire without it. Keep this always in your remem- 
brance, that there is only on^ way t6 prosper in reHg^ 
ion ; that yolir streti^h Is not to sit still ; that some- 
thing more is necessary than airy notions, sleepy wi!lh- 
es, feeble resolutions, wavering ind cold endeavoiits ; 
that temptations afe to be resisted, obstacles to be <]^r- 
come, means to be incessantly used, ^specisffiy prityer, 

' that divine Grace may be mighty in you ^ and sufficient 
for yoix. ^ He becometh poor that dealeth with a shck 
*^ hand ; but the hand of the diligent maketh rich/' 
''The soul of the sluggard desireth and hath noth- 
'' ihg ; but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat/' 

* ^ And we desire that every one of you do shew the 
'' same diligence to the fidl assurance of hope unto the 
^^end; that ye W not slothful } but fcdkiwen of them. 



CBrlttkm JSilfgenee* 

Ipik, tfu 

« who tJuoagH fidth and patience iiilieiit tlie pronb' 
**es.** **VfhatA«e, mf bdoved Brethren, be ye 
<* steadfast, nnmoveidde, ^iwxp abounding in the work 
** of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that yonir labour 
*< is not in vain in the IiOrd**' 




EccLBs. -vm, 11. 

Because sEHtEneE jGJiwsr AjTsriL woex is wor EXEamo stm^e* 


MY Brethren, to know thbgs in their 
principles has always been deemed the highest kind of 
sdence. The attention of a vulgar mind may be roiis* 
ed by effeds ; but a wise man looks back from con. 
sequences to the cause, and expk>res the source of the 
disease, in order to prescribe more certainly the means 
of cure. 
That there is much wickedness in the world is un- 

' deniable. Whence does it arise? Sdiomon views it 
as resulting from an Abuse of Divine Forbearance. 
Not that this is the only source of iniquity ; but it is 
a very powerful, and a very prevailing one. In such 
a dreadful course as Sin, a man needs encoun^^ 

' ment ; and he awfully derives it from the goodness 
and k)ng-8uffering of his God. <^ Because sentem:e 
** against an evifwork is not executed speedily, there- 

Sj40 The Abuse of CSh»» xvu. 

<^ fore the hearts pf the sons of fnen is fuBy set m then^ 
« to do eviL" 

There is a sentence denounced against Sr^. 
The execution of it is commonly long suspen- 
D£0« This delay emboldens the sinner in his 
CRIMES. T^ese.three things ate p^icpsljr contained iii 
the words before us ; and with these I would engage 
ypuf present attention* ** To-day if ye will hear Us 
" voice, harden npt your heart.*' ' 

I. Sin is deservedly called an evil work. I feat 
none of us are sufficiently impressed with a sense o£ 
its vileness and malignity. It is ^^ the work of ttie 
<* devil." It is folly, ingratitude^ rebellion, treason. 
It degrades the soul; it defiles the soul. It robs us 
pf the liken^s, the pj^ence, the favour of God. How 
deplorable are its consequences ! Wha.t misery bs^^ it 
produced ! For it cannot go unpunbhed. There .19 a 


God 19 pf ^' purer eyes ths^n to beho}d iniquity ;'' 
^^He is angry with the wicked every d^ty/' Byt 
what is anger in God ? Not a passion, but a princip^, 
a determination to punbh. It b justi<:e, ^pd this jus- 
tice. is essential tp the perfef^n of hb character ; aufi 
we could neither ad^re pr love him, if we believ^ 
that he was indiffer^t to an evil whifh i^of. only sub* 
verts hb designs, but destroys the welfare of hb crea- 
tures. What would you thinly of a ms^trate who 
should "bear the siwprd in vainjV^aod who, .wh^n 
you led before him one who had invaded your prapv- 
ty, and another who hs^l killed your child, should 
smile and say, What; is that to me ? Would you no^ 

pER. xviij Bivine Forbearance. 84l 

pxdam— "Wiiy, are ycfU not « a minifter of dod ftSr 
« good, a revenger to execute wrath upon him thit 
^« doietli^^vil^ ?*' Criaias, iu aK well*governed empires, 
are puniAed ; and on their puniflunent much of our 
ptaoe and safety depends* Hence prisons are as neces- 
sary as houses, and our houses would afford us nb 
security without prisons. What would be the conse* 
quence of the abrogation of all the penalties attachepl 
to crimes in this country, but disorder, anarchy, rob- 
bery, and murder ? 

God is the governor of the world. But there is 
no governing without laws, and laws are nothing 
without sanations j from these they derive their force 
and their efficacy. Laws issued by a legislator unac- 
companied with threatenings, would be harmless, and 
inspiring no terror, would be trifled with, or consider- 
ed only' as advice. Thus the notion of puniihment 
follows from the very confiitution of law. If any 
fhould be ready to say, " The case before us is a 'pe- 
*^ culiar one, and laws so excellent as those which 
f< God has ^ven us fliould be cheerfully obeyed for 
^ their own sake.'* We answer, Firil, that man was 
originally made capable of fear, and that God even 
in a ftate of innocency addressed himself to this pas- 
sito to aid his authority and secure his dominion. 
Witness the threatening, <^ In the day that thou eatefl: 
** thereof thou shalt surely die.'* Secondly, as msin 
is now fallen and depraved, and lives so much und^r 
the dominion of ^ense,' such* a revelation of terror 
is become far more necessary to ched^: the power of 
appetite, and break the force of temptation. Accord, 
ingly a sentence the moft tremendous is denoiincfc^ 

^igaMk every traugrMaor, Do j<n. mIc vben it js 

Look witioB thee, O naiv wd read it thuB^ ; read 
it in the trouUe, the nmxm^f the lorebodui^ of thy 
<nm. conscteiu^. Why are y^ou uneasy when any 
thing reminds you of the .2q;qiroach of Qeiity ? Whence 
liWjHdaiefll, a «id4en deaths ui opening ^¥e, such 
paver to alarm you ? Why are you unwilling to be 
ahvieji and why do you require a succession of bu^neis 
and diversion to maintain your tranquility ? Are not 
. these things more frequently your refuge than your 
dioice ? 4nd are you not fearfyl to leave any honir 
lijafiUed up, left a faithful monitor, findEbg you dis^i^ 
ipgedy fliouki a&rd you employinent ? Why are you 
uoea«y, not only for the time, but for weeks and 
months after the contra^n oi the g^ilt? Why are 
fon uneasy, not only wheq you are cUscovered, but 
when no eye sees you ? Why are you uneasy, not only 
when you have eicposed yourselves to the penalty of civ« 
jlhiw, but when you have committed crimes for which 
you are amenaUe to no earthly tribunal ? What judge, 
what prison is it you then dread ? Why do you not 
Aake off these terrors and bea man? Why do you fuf- 
f er them to follow you into sdiitude aad into company ) 
Turn and frown them back, and suffer your peace of 
nolnd te be no longer diftorbed. Ah ! it isrin.'vain to ar* 
gue agalnft a truth which depends not only on nAson- 
ing but sentiment ; and to aaniluiate, a principle inttr* 
woven in human nature by the finger of Ood. . Wh(Kre 
is it recorded i 

Examine die hbtory of mankind, and rta^ it they». 
See it in the repulsion of yonder happy Pair from 
Paradise ; i n the Flood which deftroyed die world of 

ibe tingodlf ; in tfie fire dad UtimtOM vhidb ccm^ 
sumed the cities of the plik. Go^ amd read it mscriU 
bed oft ^ Fiihcr of Ssdt^ and engraven mi the anus 
tolled to the shore of the Red Sea. View it In th^ 
desolations di a Teoj^e hafted and scattered, once the 
labourites of Heaven j view it in every cahmdty, in 
every disease^ in every deaths 'Whatb is k recorded f 

Open the Bibfe, and peruse it there. There yoi^ 
teaid that the sotd that sinneth it ^hall die. There the 
wrath of Crod is revested from hestven against all tin* 
righteousness and ungodliness of men. Sometimes^ 
it h expressed in simple terms, and more frequently 
In figurative langiia:ge. Sometimes a little of it is cBs^ 
tindly specified, but often the whole is left m dread- 
ful (^scurity. Sometimes we see the ctsrse coming to 
meet the sinner, and beginning hb misery here ; buc 
more generally we are ted forward to eternity ; for 
t&e present is only a state of trial, the future is a 
world of retribution ; here we only sow, there we 
ihall reap; the sentence is dready denounced, but 
the inflldion is commonly long suspended. This is the 

0, Kvidon of on mtjeot.. Sefitence against an 
ev9 Work is vKfv s^smdilt RXMctnrtuh Here bow* 
evtf we w4sh to observe, That thet e is no unoertaiti- 
ty as toils final aocomplidunent ; it is td^n for graat« 
€A tkat it wlfi be ezecufeed. *^ God is not a man thac 
^ he should lie, or the son of man that he diould re* 
^pent; hath ke said, and slpdi he not dok ? orhaytk^ 
^ he spoken, and shall he not make it good ?" ^ Heauc- 
^ en and earth shafl posfr awaf, but my word shall not 
^pass away.? It aiiy be ufao acmarfcrd, That he 

dass> ndt always liiBfer the^ execution of tlie sentence.* 
Mep i^aye perished even ii) theirgiaies. Witness the 
destruction of Gorah and hU oomp^oy. The lepcqsy 
of Grehazi, The death ^ of Ananias and Sapphinu 
And what has happened to one may bef^ another. 

Bvt the language of the wide nian agfrci^ with the geii- 
€nX proceedings of the Supreme Being. With much 
lpng*su£^ng . he endures the provocations of the up- 
godly, and debtys from day to day and from year to 
year the wrath which they have deserved. He is slow 
tp anger, and punish^ with reluctance. Judgment is 
his ftrange work. Patience is , one of the distinguiih- 
ihg glories of his character. It is often ascribed to 
him in Scripture ; and the exercise of it appears in 
numberless and u^dpniable instances. The old world 
was warned an hunxhred and twenty years before the 
flood came, and took them all away. . Four hundred 
years He suffered the Atnorites to fill up the measure 
of their iniquities. Forty years long was he grieved 
with the Jews in the wilderness. If we take the hifl- 
ory of this people ages after, we hear the God of Pa* 
tience in language the mbft exquisitely tender saying, 
*^ How shall I give thee up^ Ephrsdm ? how shaU I de* 
*^ liver thee, O Israel ? How sh^ I make thee as Adr 
• *^ mah ? how shall I set thee as Zeboim i Mii^^ he^t i» 
^ turned within me, my repentings are kindled togeth- 
^-* er." And are not you, ,are not xlu of you exam- 
ples ? Can you consider the time of your provocation : 
the number of your offences i the aggravations Qf your 
iniquities ; and not say with wonder amd admiratioo,' 
^^ It is of the Lord's merdes that we are not consu^ied, 
^because his compassions £ul not ?*' Lot us tal^ 

jSxR. xvilO DMne Forbearance. -94/$ 

some particular views of this dispensation, that we 
may discover the principles from which it springs^ and 
ihe purposes which it is designed to answer. 

We are obviously intended for a social state ; but 

the intercourse we are required to maintain with our 

fellow-creatures exposes us to innumerable provoc»* 

lions and offences ; and the effedls of sudden and un« 

controuled resentments would be fatal to ourselves and 

others. Hence we are commanded to be "slow to 

«* wrath ;" and to be " patient towards all men." And 

in this forbearance God places himself before us" as our 

example. He teaches us a divine lesson of meekness and 

kindness ; and calls upon us to cherish that gentleness 

which is not easily provoked, and to repress those pas- 

siiohs which would impel us to revenge. " Therefore 

** is the kingdom of heaven likened unto u certain 

^ king, which would take account of his servants. 

** And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought 

*^ unto him which owed him ten thousand talents : 

^^ but forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord com* 

'^ manded him to be sold, and his wife and children, 

and all that he had, and payment to be made. The 

servant, therefore, fell down, and worshipped him, 

S2iyingj Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay 

" thee all. Then the lord of that servant Was moved 

^^ with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him 

** the debt. But the same servant went out, and found 

^ one of hb fellow-servants, which owed him an hun- 

^ dred pence ; and he laid hands on him, and took 

** him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. 

^ And his fdlow-servant feU down at his feet, and be- 

*^ sought himi 8^yu)g> Have patience with me, and I 

U u 

fl4S TUMtMif [Sfiiu TsrvL 

^ win pay thee all. And he would not ;* but went 
^* and cast him into prison tiil he should pay the debt% 
^ So when his fellow-servants saw tfr\aSL was done^ they 
^ were very sorry^ and came and told unto their lord 
^ all that was done. Then his lord, after that he had 
<^ called him) said ttnto him, O thou wicked servant^ 
^ I forgave thee all that debt^ because thou desiredtt 
^ mfe ; shouldest not thou also have had OHnpaesicm 
^ on thy feHow-servant, even as I had pity on thee? 
^ And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the 
^' tormentors^ till he should pay all that was due unta 
^ him. So fikewise shall my heavenly Father do at- 
•* so unto you, if ye from your hearts forgave not eve- 
^ ry OBsr his brother their trespasses." 

If the commission of rin were always^ immediately 
followed whh the punishment of it, this world would 
not be a state of probation ; obedience would not be^ 
voluntary but forced; we should walk not by faitb 
but by sight ; we should not honour God by our confi- 
dence in his perfe£tions and in the dispensations of 
his Provi(tence ; he would not be ^ st God hiding 
•< himself ;** his " judgments" would not be " a great 
V deep ;" and the whole nature and des^ of religion 
would be subverted. 

If the wrath of God instantly aiished every tran&^ 
gressor, be would be the destroyer rather than the 
governor of the world. To destroy, is comparatively 
easy, and discovers little perfe^on } but the wisdom 
of God appears in reigning over the e^^travagance of 
the world ; in taking into his plans such diversities and 
contradidions, and bending every thing he meets 
with, however adverse to his own purposes ; in bring- 


6£R«^ xvit3 Dwme Forbearance. t^ 

iidg'good out of 0^ and order out of confusion} in 
making the wrath of man to praise him. It is also wor* 
thy of our remark, that many of those who deserve de- 
«tru6tion are useful in the present state of the workl } 
they are able to promote the arts and sciences ; and 
are qualified to render great services to a country. 
Such men are Unks in the chain of providence, and 
their destiny secures thenu There are also purposes 
which the widi:ed only cah accomplish. God calls 
the Assyrian, The vod oi his anger and the staff of his 
indignation; and says, ^^l will send him against an 
^' hypocritical nation, and against the people of my 
^ wrath will I give him a charge, to takjs the spoil, and 
^<, to take the prey, an^ to tread them down like the 
^^ mire in the. streets/' When he had fulfilled the de- 
signs of Heaven, in punishing some and chastising oth- 
ers, he was laid aside. The ungodly by their contin- 
uance are useful to the righteous. They exercise their 
patience, call, forth their zeal, and wean them fropi 
the present world, 

Mankind are so vs^ousiy and intimiitely blended 
together, that it is scarcely possible to strike an individ- 
ual only, without affeAing others. Now the Judge 
of all the earth will not punish indiscriminately, and 
destroy the righteous with the wicked. He would 
rather spare ^ thousand enemies, thw injure one frieiidi 
If ten righteous men had been found in Sodom, the 
place would have been preserved. The angel did notf 
yea he said he eould not, do any thing till Lot was 
safely escaped* Why were not the messen^rs suffer- 
ed to eradicate the tares f Because it would have been 
(Joing an injustice to them I No ; but lest ^^ in gath* 

S48 The Abuse of [Ser. xvh* 

" ering up the tares, they should obo root up the 
« with them/* 

But above all, the goodness of God is to be acknowl- 
edged in this dispensation. "The Lord is not slack 
** concerning his promise, as some men count slack- 
** ness ; but is long-suflfering to us-ward, not willing 
" that any should perish, but that all should come to 
^' repentance." We are to ** account that the long- 
** suffering of our Lord is salvation." We see this 
exemplified in Saul of Tarsus. Had he in his way 
to Damascus, been smitten to hell when he was struck 
to th^ ground, he had never obtained mercy, never 
have been a Chrbt^an, a Preacher, an Apostle. Whil^ 
the execution of t^e criminal is still suspended, a par- 
don may arrive ; while lifp continues, there i^ a pos- 
sibility of repentance. ^ I will give him," says God, 
** a longer period ; other me^s may be more effec- 
** tual. I will afford him a season of recoUeftion j 
** he may come to himself. I will leave him ; thought- 
*• fulness may succeed levity; disappointment may 
** break the charm which now fascinates him. He 
" is near the melancholy consequences of his perverse- 
" ness ; then he will know what an evil and bitter 
thing it is to forsake the Lord. At such a time he 
will lose the desire -of his eyes with a stroke, and 
two children shall follow their mother to the grave ; 
^^ then he will enter -his closet, and say, And now, 
" Lord, what wait I for ? my hope is even and only 
" in Thee." Here Christians, if I knew your histo- 
ries, perhaps I could say to one of you, O! it was. 
well you died not before a change in your affidrs oe^ 
casioned your removal to that dty; for there you 

foR. xvii.3 Divine Forharanci. S4& 

^ heard words whereby y6u were Saved.** To anoth- 
er. You were mercifully spared till Providence brought 
you that reli^ous Friend ; for he ^^ guided your feet 
<* into the path of peace/* To a third, What if you 
had been cut off in your sin ! You went on forwardly ; 
you proceisded firom evil to evil ; a change appeared 
hopelesg ; but by and by you began to be in want } 
all prodigd as you were, you said, ^^ I will arise and 
^ go to my father ;** nor was it too late. He came 
forth to meet you ; ^ received you graciously 
" and loved you freely." *' Therefore doth the 
^ Lord wait that he may be gracious, and therefore 
^ will be be exalted, that he may have mercy upon 
*^ you.*' Such is the design of this suspension ; but, 
alas ! ^^ let favour be shewed to the wicked, yet will 
^* he not learn righteousness }*' 2ind Solomon remind) 

HL That the depravity of man turns divine dement 
cy into presumption, and abuses the patience which 
bears with him to purposes the most vile# *' Because 
^ sentence againfl an evil work is not executed speed- 


In this mode of proceeding there is something spe- 
cious. Man is a rational creature, and is obliged to 
give his actions a cdbur of reason. What he cannot 
forbear, he wiU endeavour to jufHfy ; what he cannot 
juftify, he win extenuate ; what he cannot extenuate, 
he wiU excuse ; and unhappily he possesses no little in« 
genuity in devising excuses to authorise the passions, 
pt to keep ctf remorse and adatm. ' 


0^ The Abuse of £St£iu xvil 

When men begin a wicked canrses conscience is ten- 
ider, scrupulous^ . fearful. They are soon terrified^ 
and often look immediately for the puniihinent they 
have deserved 9 but it does not arrive. They ven- 
ture again ; the expectation diminiOies. After many 
successes and impunities they go forward cardessly 
and boldly. What they cmce approached with hedtai* 
tion, now grown familiar, ceases to Ihock* Whtt 
once made them tremble, is now ridiculed as a tnflei 
Where conscience once thundered, it is now scarcely 
heard They cannot think that "^Aat produces nn 
evil consequences can be $0 bad as they once appr«i> 
hended. They infer from the divine indulgence, ^ 
(her that there )s no God, or no Providence ; dthw 
fLhat God does pot attend to diese things, or will abt 
puniih them ; or derive froqa his lenity such views of 
his goodness as lead them to conclude that it has no 
bounds. There is a disposition in the mind to reason 
from the paft to the future* Ttms because reprieved 
to often, niarbah concluded he flionld escape again ; 
and this encouraged him to renew his disobediencow 
And thus He who assigns motives and gives langua^ 
to a6tions, has ssdd, ^^ There ihaK come in the iaft days 
^ scofiers, walking ofter fh^ own Iv^ and nying, 
^^ Where is the promise of his coming ? for since the 
^ fathers fell asleep all things con^ue as they wen 
^ from the beginning of the creatian^'' ^ These things 
^ hafl thou dime, and I k^ iHleooe ; and thott thought- 
^ eft that I was altogether such an cme ^ Uiyself. He 
*^'hath said in his heart, I ihdl jiot be moved: fori 
^ fliall never be in advievsity." '^ Wherefcwe dodi 
^ the vHcked contemn God f He hath tsaid in hift hiedfty 

881U xnhj DMne Forimrance. tSl 

^ Hioo v/Vt not require it.^ ^ Because sentence a*' 
^ gainst an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore 
^ tlie heart of the sons oE men is fully set in them to 
^ do eriL" Nothing is more common, nothing moref 
tile, nothing more fatal than this perversion* 

First. Solomon does not draw the r^efkion fronv 
a few single infkances. Nothing is more common 
than this atbuse. Perhaps many of you are examples 
ef iu To decide this I ask^ Would you have continue 
td in your sinful courses to this hour, had you not been 
yersuafded that God would beat with yon ? Would 
3ml now perpetrate another crime, if you supposed 
Aat God would instantLy destroy you for it ? Why' 
ihen it is the long-suflfering of God, that encourages 
and embddens you to go forward^ and you are evil 
because he is goo^« 

Secondly* Nothing can be more vile smd tese than 
tU^ abus& Clemency aSbrds you af shelter from the 
fhxm, and you enter; and then wound your kind 
Benefiidor, and wound Inm because he had pity up- 
on you. Had you the least ingenuousness, you could 
not help admiring and loving and serving such a Be-* 
ing; but yoa insult him bbcausb of his excellent* 
des and lovtng-kmdnesses. You sin because grace 
abounds, aad choose to appear a monster in a garb 
ef ingratitude blacker than hell« 

Thirdly. Be assured nothing wffl be more fatsdw 
*< God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the 
^^ hairy scdp of such an one as ooeth ok still in 
^ his trespasses.'^ Mercy is yonr &isl resource ; and 
when diis'ia provoked, to what can you turn ? If a fii^ 
iber disown you, lAat expectatton can you have from 

$St The' Abuse ^ C^Biu xvu* 


ae inceiife4 adversary? God is in tins case.peculiaxly 
concerned to shew his displeasure. He designed this 
long'Suffering to answer other purposes ; and shaU he 
be over-ruled and mocked? No; he will not Jose 
the honour of his patience, though you may lose . the 
advantage. If it be not glorified in your salvation, it 
will in your destruftion. Wrath loses nothing by 
sleeping } it grows fresher by repose. The longer the 
stcme be in descending, the heavier it falls* Long^ 
preparation indicates the more dreadful execution. 

Whoever may hope for audience in the day of visi- 
tation, you cannot exped it. ^^ When your fear: com- 
^ eth as desolation, and your de^ru^on cometh as n 
^ wfairlixnind ; when distress and anguish cometh upon 
^' you, then shall they call upon me, but I will not 
** answer ; they shall seek me early, but they shall not 
find me; for that they hated knowledge, and did 
not choose the fear of the Lord : they would none 
of my counsel, they despised all my reproof. There- 
*^ fore shall they eat of their own ways and be filled 
** with their own devices/* 

Whoever may hope to come off with a lighter doom, 
you cannot expeA it. Thy reckcMiing b increased by 
delay; thou ^^despisest the. riches of his goodness and 
^* forbearance and long-suffering: not knowing that. 
^' the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance ^ 
^^ but after thy hardness and impenitent heart, tre^s- 
" urest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath, 
'^ and revelation of the righteous judgment of Crod.'' 
<« But and if that servant say in his heart, my Lord de* 
^^ layeth his^ coming ; and sh^ begin to beat the men 
*^ servants and piaidens, and to ea|; and drink and to 

SEk. 3tvn.3 Divine Forbearance. tSA 

"be drunken J the Lord of that servant wiU come in 
** a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour 
** when he is not aware : and will cut him in sunder, 
** and wiH appoint him his portion with the unbe* 
•« lievers.** 

Whoever may hope to be apprized of his danger. 
Surely you cannot expeft it. "He that being often 
** reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be de- 
*' stroyed, and that without remedy/* " For when 
**they shall say Peace and safety; then sudden de* 
** strudion cometh upon them as travail upon a woman 
** with child ; and they shall not escape.*' 

And do you promise yourself exemption always? 
t^ven the patience of the vine-dresser has an end ; he 
only prayed for Another year ; and perhaps this was 
more thsm eleven months ago. Are you sure that hd 
who waited to-day, will wait to-morrow also ? Having 
Stood so long knocking, will he never depart ? May 
he not withdraw this very evening, saying, "O that 
" thoii faadst known in this thy day the things ^hich 
"belong to thy peace, but now they are hid from 
" thine eyes.** 

But at present this is not your case. Your harvest 

is not yet past, your summer is not yet ended. The 

Hves of some of you are spared even to old age. Gray 

hairs are here and there upon you ; and each of them 

proclaims the patience of God. You are in his House, 

and before his Throne, 'and capable of hearing his 

Word. He has seen all your sin, and abhorred all. 

He has l|ad you completely in his power; he could 

have frowned you into perdition. He has guarded 

you from accidents, and raised you up from beds of 

W w 

354 The Abuse of^ &c. f Ssr^ zviW 

langmshmg. How manyy once your companions ia 
foUy and sin, have been removed ! where are they 
now ? O let this goodness encourage you, not to sia 
but to pray. Approach and kneel before him. '^O 
^' thou, who hast given me space, give ihe also grace 
*' to repent. I am now sensible of my guilt, and of 
^ thy goodness, t now £aiow what misery I have de- 
^ served, and What a blesseddess thy met'cy is ready to 
«c bestow. I ain filled with sorrow and shame and 
'^ self-abhorrence, to think that I have so long trans- 
** gres^ed thy Law, and' despiiaed thy Gospel j provo- 
*^ ked thy justice, and contemned thy grace. If after 
^^all thou wilt be favourable to such an ungrateful 
^< wretch, and accept the remains of a sinful life, I 
^ here devote all I am, and all I have to thee. The^ 
^^ r will love* and obey. Adieu, my v^uin and foolish 
^'desires; my degrading lusts, my unprofitable pur- 
** suits — Pardon — ^Heaven — ^is even now attainable, and 
^ I am following after it. O my God ! enaUe me td 
*^ run and not be weary, and to walk and not faint. *^ 
May God inspire you with these sentiments. To hlns 
be glory and dominion for ever and ever. 


^psacggs: I ■ II i .j easaaess i r i i n ', i 'T''^-^^ 



1 John hi. 10. 

i^ 9ats 9rHB caitDREK OF God ame ujvzFssr; ajtd tbb caiLDBsiroF 


NEiTBES as TBAr LovEra Norais BRo^raER, 

JVIY Brethren, When God would ad- 
monish and encourage Jeremiah in the discharge of 
his office, he said, ^'If thou take fortli the predous 
" from the vile, thou shalt be as my mouth/' This 
address determines the dutjr of every Preacher, who 
would •^make" full proof of his ministry/* It re- 
quires him to attend peculiarly to the states of his 
hearers; to delineate character; to bring forward 
frequently and boldly the difference between the righ- 
teous and the wicked ; and to apply with confidence 
and wisdom the threatenings and promises of the 
Scripture, for the convidion of the sinner, and the con- 
solation of the godly. 

In this manner our Apostle studied to shew himself 
3j>proved unto God, " a workman that needeth not to 
*^ t)e ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth*^ 

856 Assurance^ TSer. xnii^ 

<< In this the children of God are manifest, and th^ 
•* children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righ- 
^' teousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not 
« his brother/' 

Of the persons here mentioned we shall consider 
three things. I. The charader by which they are; 
described. IT. The manner in which they are dis- 
covered* in. The msurks by which they are distin- 

Men and Brethre|j^! While I am endeavouring to 
explain and inlprove a subjed so important, let me en- 
treat you to employ your minds, not in determining 
the condition of others, but in judging your own; 
** let every man prove his own work, and then shall 
** he have rejoicing in himself alone and not in anoth- 
*^ er : for every ms^n ^aU bear his own burden.'* 

L The persons opposed are Thb childrbn op 


suppose that there are no such chara^fters, would be a 
refledioa upon the wisdpm of the inspired writer in. 
making the comparison. E^ut let us consider the mean* 
ing and importance of the titles. ^^ The children of- 
**God, s^nd the children of the devil,'' mean good 
and bad men. It is common in the Scripture to call 
persons distinguished by any quality or Requisition^ 
the children of those from whom it was originally de-' 
rived, or by whom it was pre-eminently possessed. 
Thus we read in the Book of Genesis, that '^ Jabal was 
*^the Father of such as dwell in tents, and of such 
** as have cattle : and that Jubal was the Father of 
*^ adi such as handle the harp and the organ.*^ An4 

^lu XTiji.^ Aguranni. 841 

tkiya they who have the futh and do the works of A* 
braham, are called the Chijlor^k of Alnrahain. . Thor 
^vU is the introducer of evil ; the wicked morally 
proceed from him ; partake of his dejMravity ; resemble 
him y are proud like hiin, are liars lil^e him, and 9Q 
of tlie rest. Hence, says our Apoille» ^^ He that com- 
f « mitteth sin is of the de^vil, for the devil sinneth from 
f* the beginning." And hence our Lord says to the 
Jews, who Were endeavoring to accuse and destroy 
)umt '^ Ye are of your father the devil, and the lufb 
** of your father yo)^ will do. * He ivas a murderer 
^< from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, 
f' beeatisQ there is no truth in him. When he speaketh 
^ a lie,^ he speaketh of his own : for he is a liar, and 
^^ the father of it." God is the author of all goodness ; 
and Ghristiams are said to be " born of him -," to be 
^ partakers of the divine nature ;" to be ^^ followers 
of him as dear children." Hiey admire his excellent 
ciesi aikl imitate his perfections. Is he a Gq4 ^ 
Truth ? They walk in the truth. |s he holy ? They 
are holy. Is he merdful? They are merciful. And 
dn» they are ^< the children of their Father which is in 
^ heaven : for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil 
«5 and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just 
^i^ahd on the unjust." 

The sinner makes the devil his model, and every de^ 
gree of transgression adds to the Kkeness. The believer 
aqsircs aftet conformity to the highest of all examples j 
and as he grows in grace, he is '' changed into the 
** same image from giory to glory, even as by the 
<*J5pirit of the Lord.*' 

These are the persons here described by the charac- 
ters of ^' the children of God, and the children of the 

SSB \. JLsurance. t^EH. xvm.« 

^ deviL^ This division is the most general and unl- 
▼ersaL It extends to aU mankind ; and by a classifi- 
cation the most simple, reduces the innumerable diver- 
sities of the human race into two orders. It enters 
this house, and arranges this assembly ; it finds no in- 
dividual in a state of neutrality ; it instantly blends 
each of you with those diildr^ of wrath, or with these 
heirs of glory. 

It is also a division the most serious and eventful. 
It overlooks every thing adventitious, and considers 
only character. It passes by the distinctions of speech^ 
complexion, rank ; and regards the soiil and eternity. 
It views even the diversities which arise from the en- 
dowments of nature, and the gifts of Providence, as 
nothing compared with those which spring from fidth 
and infidelity, holiness and sin. How soon will the 
difference between |the learned and illiterate, tyrants 
and slaves, poor and rich be abolished ! Death levels 
tiiem all, and sends them into the world of spirits, not 
as lords or vassals ; not saying, this came from a man- 
sion, and this from a cottage. He separates by a more 
unchangeable rule of discrimination. This was a true 
worshipper of God on earth, let him enter the temple 
above ; this made the wicked his choice and his com- 
panions, let him be led forth with the workers of ini- 
quity. Death decides the importance of every claim. 
Your true greatness is your final ; and those distinctions 
are alone worthy of your regard, which, being internal 
and spiritual, will adhere to you when you leave, every 
tiling else behind, and which will remain with yo^ 

StJER. xyin«3 AssuratKi. '^^IMI^ 

Let us consider fiuther what results from these rela>. 
tions. According as you are *^ the children of" Gody 
«* or the cliildren of the devil," you are crowned with 
honour, or covered with disgrace. How did David 
prize an alliance which made him son-in-law to the 
King ! How vain are the people of their lineage and 
extraction I But to be ^' sons and daughters of the 
^^ ^rd Almighty,'' confers substantial dignity, unfading 
honour, in comparison with which all the glory deri- 


ved from secular nobility vanishes into smoke. Upon 
this principle, what infamy attaches to the sinner, who 
has for his father the devil, a rebel, atrzutor, who for- 
feited his inheritance, and is bound in chains of dark- 
n^ss, a murderer the most accursed being in the uni- 
verse ! And what renders him more worthy of re- 
proach, and draws from us execration where other- 
wise we should rather shew pity, is, that this is all his 
choice that he is not ashamed to acknowledge the re- 
lation } every time he sins, he calls him Father ; eve- 
ry time he swears, slanders, takes revenge, observe, 
says* he, my pedigree, and behold the example I copy./ 

Upon these connections innumeraUe privileges or 
cvib depend. Are you the children of God? Heav- 
en is your home ; it is your Father's house, where are 
many mansions. He has in reserve for you an inher- 
itance incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not 
away. And here you fhall want " no good thing.'*' 
** Your heavenly Father knoweth what things y© have 
•* need of before you a3k htm.** Have you affliftions ^ 
He will pity you " as a Father pitieth his children."^ 
Have you infirmities ? He will spare you ^ as a man 

§9& Assurance. [Sbiu xviifi 

** spareth his own son that serveth him/* Are you to 
be t)repared for a ** high calling ?** You shall « be all 
•* taught of the Lord.** Do you require care and at- 
tention? The ahgek shaU be your guardians: ^are 
^ they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to tmnbter 
^for them who shall be the heirs of salvation?'* But, 
my dear Hearers, I leave you to fin up the remabing 
article, and to think <rf the children of the wicked one. 
I leave you to refleft upon the miseries they endui^ 
from their perplexities, their fears, their passions, and 
their pursuits in life. I leave you to lode forward to 
the horrors which will devour them in a dying hour j 
to follow them home, and to contemplate their por- 

" WAY of transgressors is hard.*' " The end of 
•* these things is death.*' It is therefore above afl 
things necessary for you to know in which of thesd 
dasses you rank ; and we are going to shew, 

XL The possibility of ascertaining this. The chil- 
dren of God, and the children of the devil are man- 
lEEST. Observe, it is not spoken of as a future, but as 
a present discovery ; they are manifest. There is 
indeed a period of separation approaching, when those 
who are now blended shall be detached from each 
*' other, and mingle no more. It is called " the man- 
^ ifestation of the sons of Gpd.** " Every man's 
** work shall be made manifest, for the day shall de- 
<*dare it.** This *«will bring to light the hidden 
^ things of darkness, and make pianifest the counsels 
^ pf the Jiearts, and then shall eyery outn have praise 
*^ of God.** " And then shall ve return and discern 


^fiiu xviti:] Assuranu^ • S61 

^ between the riglKeoiis and the wicked > between him 
^ that senreth God and htm that serveth him not**' 
But even now they are to be discovered, though 
not sufficiently and perfectly known: They ^^ are 
" manifest. You ask. To whom ? 

First. They are manifest to God: It is impossible 
to impose upon him ; he " is not mocked.** ** His 
^ eyes ' are ih every place, beholding the evil and 
^ tlie good.'* He •* krioweth them that are his ?" 
** and he krioweth them that are not, his ; " heii 
<^ ther ii there any creature that is not manifest in 
^'^hik sight: but all things are naked and open unto 
" the eyes of him with whom we have to do;** 

Secondly. They ite manifest to others. The tree 
is known by its fruit; ^* A good man out of the 
^ good treasure of his heart bringeth forth good 
things, arid an evil man out of the evil treasure 
of his heart bringeth forth evil things.** Thiie par. 
takers of Divine Qrace are designed to be distinguish- 
ed from others ; they are to appear religious, as weU 
as be so j tbey are to hold forth the word of Ufe ; 
tb reprove and convince others ; their light is to ^^ shine 
^ before men, that they may see their good works, 
^^ and glorify their father who is in heaven.*' And 
^rely there must be an observable difference between 
them and others. It is unreasonable to suppose that 
persons whose principles and aims and'rules of action^ 
ire not only so vtridely different, but so eoitipletely op- 
jk)site, can be lindistinguishirigly confounded togeth- 
er. The difference is riot indeed so conspicuous as it 
ought to be, but this arises from the imperfect degree 
•f their religion ; for when they live as they ought, 

Y , 

^62 • Jfjurane&s (Snt. xtiftAf 

^ they declare pl ainlv tlftt they seA a ccmntty ;*• 
*< they are makifb^tlt the epistles of iMUi Cfaritt, 
^ known and read <^ all itaen/* 

fhirdly. l^^hey are manifest to themselves.^ It will 
teafSily be acknowledged tHat it is not pos^Ue for st 
man to be wicked, without knowing* it. He cannot 
live in the pi*a6tice of sin^ and in t6e omimon of the 
various duties of religion ; he cartno^ kve the one* 
and hate the oth^, and not be cpnsdons^ of tt« But 
is the sanoe trae of a good man ? In reply to this^ 
anffer tAe to ask two thii^. First. Is it ii6t aeces^ 
asry for him to be Me to know hb chiorafter i JS 
promises are made ta a' religtons state^ how can he 
daim these promises yiitiiess^ h^ can determine that he ia 
in th» state?' If priviliegft ai^ su^^ded upofi duty^ 
how can he rejoice in thiese privil^ges^ uidess he cam 
4etermine that he has performed this duty ? Secpn(fiy. 
What is religion ? An unintelligible mystery, a charm^i 
an ^wraUpn which pasass upon us and leaves no trace 
behind? h it not the most serious and inipressive con^ 
cem in whicb we Were ever engaged T Does it not ex* 
cite fears and hopes,, joys and sorrows, £ur superior to" 
those whidi can arise from any other source? Doe» 
k not invtdve vs in a suocessbn of diflicukies^ opposi^ 
tions, and warfere ? Is it not ai general and continued 
cofurse of adion ^ The business of life, to which we* 
endeavour to render every thing else subordinate and 
subservient? Our prevailing aim? our chief aoret 
And is this incapable of being known ? But these are 
the viei^ which you should take of religion, and by 
these your condition is to be tried ; which brings us^ 


' m. TocoBsider-THEMAMiBWDHTweTioNbetweem 
tbese chaimAerSi ^'In Vhm tbe childreii of <^ God are 
'' mani£BSt, and the children of the devil'' 

hi what^ iNot Sil temporal success. Hiis is giyen or 
>inthheld too {^(^scrinunately to aOow of our knowing 
love or hatr^. In this ^ all things come alike to all^ 
^ there is one event to the righteous and to the wick- 
^ ed. As is the good so is the sinner^ «iid he that 
^ tfveareth as he that feareth an oath/' 

fA vAi2X^ Not in rdigious profress&on. Judas and 
Difemas were both visible members of the church of 
God. There haye always been many vdio had a 
liame to live while they were dead ; and assumed % 
font! oi godliness while they denied the power thereof^ 
In our day all this is too ches^ tQ be valusA^le ; too com# 
ttion to be di^ingtushifig. 

In what ? Not in talking % not in controversy ; nOt 
in a sound creed ; not in the pronunciation of the 
Shibboleths of a particular party. How few in answer* 
Ihg this question would have adduced the practice 


I)ut such is the distin^on of our Apostle. In this the 
cluldren of Grod are manifest, and the children of the 
devil ; he that doeth not riohtbouskess is not of 
God, neither he that j^oveth not his brother* 

, And here we may observe, Hrst. The manner hi 
which the subjed is expressed. It is hdd forth keo* 
ATiVELY \ imx is this without design. It reminds 
us that omisssions decide the charaAer even where there 
is no positive vice. It is the representation of the un- 
godly " that he hath left off to be wise and to do 
^<good.'' The *^ unprofitable*' servant i^ called a 


S64 Atsuranee. [Sbr. xviiir 

^^vic&ed'' one; and condemned, not becau^ he a- 
t^used his t^lenjt, but because he *^ hid it in a napldm'f 
And "every tree that brinobt{i i»ot torth good 
*' FayiT is hewn down and cast into the fite; he that 
" doeth NOT righteousfiesa is not of Gpd, fieitMr \^ 
" that loveth NOT bis brother." 

Secondly. The union of these excdlencies ii 
worthy of pur notice. Vfe commonly see them com«- 
bined in the Scripture* |t is $aid of a good man, 
" He is gcacious and full qf compassion, and righteous." 
f ^ He bath dispersed, he hath given to the poor ; his 
*^ rigbteouspess endureth for ever." It b said also, 
that "Pure and uo^defiled religion before God and 
" the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and wid- 
^' ows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspot- 
" ted from the world." And this enables us to redi- 
fy the mistake of those who are always eqdeavouring 
to separate what God has joined together. Somo 
place their religion entirely in charity, and in one 
equivocal exercise of it ; for all they mean by chari- 
ty is alms-giving, and "this covers a multitude of 
<^ sins." And some trust in themselves that they arq 
righteous and. despise others, who never seem to have 
read that " the end of the commandment is charity 
*' out of a pure heart and a good conscience and &itb 
" unfeigned j" that "charity is the bond of perfed- 
*f ness ;•' that " by this shall all men kpow that we are 
" his disciples if we love one another" -^ ttf^ 

Thirdly. From these prises a crite^rion, . by 
which we are to judge of the reality and genuineness, 
of religion. Not that these are the only marks which 
we are to employ; tl^ere are many other evidences 

Suu %mh} Assmrame^ S65 

in the Scriptures^ and some of them of a more. e3q>err 
imeatad kind, which we dare not dq>redate ; but all 
the rest will be vain ^d delusive if unaccompanied 
with this righteousness and this love. These are the 
never-foiUi^ consequences of Divine Grace. These 
enter dee{dy into the charafter. These are indispen- 
9S^. By these we ihall be tried hereafter i by tl^ese 
we ihiould form our judgment here. The judge him- 
sdf prppoiBes this rule. , ^< In this the children of God 
f < are manifeft, and the children of the devil : he that 
^^ doeth not righteousness is not. of God, neither he 
f * that love(}i pot his brother." 

Let me conclude by calling upon you to think of 
this, in forming a judgment of othb&s. It is a seri- 
€fQ8 thing to deprive a fellow^-creature of religion, and 
to exclude him from eternal fif^ ; and what authority 
have you for doing so, if his life be ezemfdary, and 
righteousness and charity blend and prevail ia his char- 
aAer ? You say, perhaps, a man 'may appear to pos« 
sess these things when he is a flranger to the reality^ 
or his practice may flow fro(n no inward or gracious 
principle. We allow this ; and it becomes such, a 
person to examine himself, to see whether his heart 
be right with God, and whether his views and his dis* 
positions be^such as the Gospel requires ; but when I 
f6rm a judgment concerning him, the case is material- 
ly altered ; I have nothing tq dp. with his motives ; I 
cannot search his heart ; his life and conversation on* 
ly fall under my cognizance, and these are my rules, 
« by their fruits ye ihall know them." When will thi^ 
i\ecessary difference influence the opinions of individu* 
ab ? When will it be regarded by pur churcljes in th^ . 

irimi won of uMoboM to comimAtei-f ^Micn^^ 
nothing obje^ttooaUe in acamdidate, who tdb ns i 
iiiin back till we find something satisfaftoiy ? ^^ la this 
<< the duldren of Qod are maniffiO'> amid the chiUimt 
^o£ thedevil: he tl^tt doeth not xj^itecq|||iest ia^jK^ 
** pf God, neither he that loveth not his brother." 

Above aH, ido not fi^iget this in judging irotf fisBL'VMi 
I presume you wiOi to know your spiritual condltiM^ 
«nd that you ace not mlling to leare your eternal i^ 
vation to a mere peradventur^-^Perhaps, I fhall hi 
^ved ; perhaps, I fliaH be loft ! ! <^ Wherefiore, Bpetb- 
^^ ren, give all diligence to make your calKng and eiec- 
^ tion siife/' But beware how you prooeed in the 
enquiry, Remenx|ber thpt diere are marks ;and evi* 
denoes wUdi cappmt lead you to a certain and aalii 
conclusion* Dq not place your confidaace in specu^ 
httive opinions 9 be not influenced by particular hA 
ings, wbidi having much of animal nature in thMi^ 
snay sometimes elevate and aomerimes depress 709 
while your ftate is the sanae 9 do not wait fer sudden 
impressions, and^visionary suggsftioos ; fanSTemember 
that the witnesand tjke seal of she spkit are Jds wntk 
and influences ; 5< bciuby wn know that we dwtl^ in 
^ him and his in ust beouse^hehatb g^vennsof hitf 
«'&|)mt; ^'ifanymanhawnot th^,Spilitof Chiift, 
♦* he is none of hb.*' * / 

Here then lay the fifess.' Ttj youta by -your pref 
g diqxMitSons, and thetenour of your lives. Ma» 
mow deride stfch a ^andard; it is legal Thef 
t their assurance from some other source ; espe- 
fitmi ^ a dlreft ad of ftith ; or ki other wordii, 
a persuasion mto wflicfa ther work tji^nsdves. 


tividiill h^ng aUe to msi^ any reason mHbiiteTer t& 
fuSSfyity upite die cotuciottmest itteE They not onlf 
t^si&^good works IQce etiiefB as causes of sdvatioiv 
bitt tlwf rqeft them e%^eii as evideilces too. They 
aie iMt ssdflfied fike others to- ed£elude tfietxi fi^m thdBr 
|dffificatk>ii' ^' they oidiide theirt^e^nfrotii tliinr satu> 
tificatipa too^ wUdi \nth them nleras only a fthtive^ 
cbmigm' A^ you bt preservedyi my dear Brethren^ 
from thir dreadfiil pei^nionM ^^ ungoeOy oien, wh<y 
^^ turn the gfyce ei God into lascvviousiiess.* RemMi* 
ber nothing can be so awful ak final deception i^ and 
Nothing can more oertainly expose you to it, than im- 
2||^img'yoius8dT^ the favourites o£ Heaven, while yoir 
are srtrangers to^ the renewing power of divine Grace^ 
a«d your teibpers and Hires are mider none of the 
PV^&ii^YiNO and^ AjM^scTxofTATf influences of the 
Qmpdf '^The secret of the Lotd is with them thatt 
Vr f s AR hidL'' ^^ The meek will he guide in judgment^ 
^^,wd the MEEK will he teach his Way/' They, to 
whom- there is no condemn^cm because they are in^' 
Christ, ^WALK ADC after the flesh, but after the- 
^^&?iMT4^ ^^He that is bom of God ovbrcom^ 
<V£TH THS WORLD** ^ By tjUs we Kitow that we qo 
<^KKow him, if we ksey his commahdmbiIvs.''' 
These are the true sayings o£ God; and such is^ the 
invariable reference of the Scripture* 

. ^nff^r me then ta ask you wkrt you know of these 
tbfc^ Are you doing r^^eonsoess ? and are ycm 
doing* it, not rtlMtattdiy, but with pleasured^ not oo^ 
cawkmly, but consinntly ? not partUiy^ but withcml 
resecve ? So yoil ^< esQsem ill his liommi&daents taos^ 
^ceraixif aO jthngs. ta he jofht^'^ And da ^jonhttm 

i^ Aiturmhg. [Sjir; xvidl 

^ every febe way ?** Are your ififirttikies youAffib^ 
fions ; and do you derive from tfaem motives to vigi- 
lance and prayer; or anre you satisfied and careless 
uiider theni ? 0or you *' love your broAer also ?* Do 
you regard alt ^ofur fellow-creatures and feDow chrts^' 
tians? And as yoU have opportunity, do you do good 
ttnto all then ; especially tihto ^^ those Who( are of the 
^ household of faith ?'* Does this principle idust^ 
you to aflford tfaem relibf, to bear their burdens, to' 
seek their welfiire, and serve theih at thib expensle of 
ifelf-denial ? 

If this bfe not you^ condition, it is well to know it ; 
and it will be your mercy to lay it to heart. For 
jrour case, though bad, is not desperate. If you are' 
iow sensible of your sin, and really desirous of con- 
version, he calli, he encourages you*. "Wash ye, 
^ make ye clean, put away the evil of your doings 
" from before mine eyes ; cease to do evil : learn to 
^ do well : seek judgement, relieve the oppressed, judge 
^^the fatherless, plead for the widow. Come now,' 
" and let us reason together, saith the Lord ; though 
** your siiis be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow ; 

* though they be red Kke crimson, they shall be as' 
'* wool. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the un- 

* righteous man his thoughts : and let him return un- 
" to the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him y 
" and to our God for he will abundantly pardon." 
And v/hat he' requires, he also bestows. Read hitf 
promises '^in connexion with his commands. Whilef 
the one determines your work, the other insures your 
ability for the performance of it. Beseech Him to 
create itt "you a dean hearty and to renew a right spir- 

SsE» xviil] 



it vhhin jrou. Ikqiend upon his gMce, lirhich will be 
<< sUffident for you;" and '\beii^ made free from sin, 
^'and become servants to God, you will have your 
^* fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. For 
*^ the wages of sin is death ; biit the gift of God is 
^^ eternjtl life thtouj^ Jesiis Christ our Lord.'' Amen* 

Y Y 



FSALM cxviii. 15. 


NOTHING ^^ tnote useftiUy en- 
gage our attention than HutHan Nature and Humane 
Life. The proper study of mankind is Man. Hi^ 
origin and his end ; the structure of his body and the 
gowera of his mind ; his situation and his conne^ons ;. 
are all capable of yielding us boundless and edifying: 

In observing mankind^ the private and familiar 
idews of their charafter are by fax the most curious^, 
interesting, and profitable. The greater part of our 
history is composed of minute and common inadents ;. 
and little and ordinsury things serve more to discover 
a man, and conduce more to render him useful than 
splendid and rare occurences.. Abroad a man ^ ap- 
pears cautious^ at home he is unreserved. Abroad 
he is artificial ; at home he is real. Abroad he is- 
useful ; at home he is necessary ; and of this we mky 
be fully assiured, that a man is in truth what he is in 

6£R* xnj Pomestk PappincH. Vtl 

liis own family^ whether viciovs or Tirtuous^ tyranxn^ 
tcal or mildy miserable or happy. 

My Br^diren, we are going to enter one of thos* 
iiousesy of which Dadd speaks 4 a tabernacle *^ filled 
^ with the vcHce of rejpidng/' Domestic Feficity is "^ 
'Onr present subjed:* Let i^ consider two things $ 
tl^e iH^oiLT ANC E.9 j^nd the source of this haj^iness. 


4>s IT. O Thoii, who hast said, ^^ k is not good for 
^man to be afone,** ^^Ood of the families of aS 
" the earth," may thy secret be upon our taberpacles ; 
under the influence of thy Providence and Grace may 
^ derive from our unions all the Uessedness they are 
capable of iifibrding ; and to this end guide and sane* 
tify omf meditations* 

Part I. One of the 'most agreeable scenes we 
c?m ever survey upon earth, is a peaceful and happy 
£imily; where friendship comes in to draw more 
closely the bonds of nature; where the individuals 
resemble the human body, and if one member sufler, 
all the members suffer with it, and if one member be 
honoured, all the members rejoice ; where every care 
is divided, every sorrow diminished, every joy redoub- 
led, by discovery, by sympathy, by communion; 
where mutual confidence prevails, and advice, conso- 
lation, and succour are redprocally given and receiv- 
ed. To such a sight God himself calls our attention ; 
«* Behold how good and pleasant a thing it is for 
^ brethren to dwell together in unity V* Some things 
are good but not pleasant, and some things are pleas- 

S7S DomeMtic ff$ppines(, [Sbi^. xii;^ 

ant but not good. Here both are combined, and thq 
effedl b fragrant as the sacred periume» and reviviiifj 
as the influteces of Heaven* ^^ It tt like the precious 
f^ ointment upon the head, that ran diown upon the 
^ beard, even Aaron's beard ; that went down to the 
^ skirts of his garments ; as the dew of Hermon, and 
as the dew that descended upon the laountains of 
Zion : ^r there the L.ord coitamanded his blessing^ 
^ even life for eyenhore.'^ Let us establish the iic« 
PORTANCE of Diinaestic Happiness, by taldhg some 
particular views of its conne&ons and influence. 

And, First, We may consider it in reference to our 
AVOCATIONS and cares. These are /lumerous and 
diversified, and demand relaxation and relief. Who 
could endi^re perpetual drudgery and fatigue ? and^ 
Oh, what so refreshing, so soothing, so satisfying^ 
as the placid joys of home ! ' 

See the traveller. Po^ duty call hiin for a sesig 
son to leave his beloved circle ? The image* of his 
(earthly happiness continues vividly in his remem* 
brance; it quickens him to diligence; it cheers him 
^nder difficulties ; it makes him hail the hour whidj^ 
sees his purpose accomplished, and his face turned to* 
wards home } it communes with him as he journeys % 
and he hears tl^e promise which causes him to hope^ 
^* Thou shalt know also that thy ta(>emable snail be iqi 
peace } and thou shalt visit th^ habitation and no| 
sin.'* bh, the joyful re-union of s^ divided family j 
the pleasures of renewed interview and conversatioi) 
after days of absence ! 

Behold the man of fdence. He drops the laboijf 
and painfulness of research, closes his volume, smooths 



9s R. XIX.3 D&mesik Happmesx. i^§ 

)ui wrinkled brows, leaves his study, and unbend- 
ing himself, stoops to the capacities, yields to the wish^ 
cs, and mingles with the diversions of his children. 

^]^ wUl not bjush that ha^ 1^ &t}ier*s hearti 

^ To take in childish piay a childish part : 

<< But bends his sturdy back to any toy 

^ TMt youth takes pleasora hi to please his boy.'* 

. Take the man of trade. What reconciles him te 

the toil of business ? What enables him to endure the 

, . . , , , « 

fastidiousness and impertinence of customers ? What 
rewards him £Dr so many hours of tedious confine- 
ment ? By and by the season of intercourse wiU arrive ; 
he will be imbosomed in the caresses of his family : 
he will behold the desire of his eyes, and the children 
of his love^ for w^oni ^ resigns his ease ; and ii^ 
iheir w;elfare and smiles he will find his recompense. 

Yonder comes the labourer. He has borne the bur- 
den and heat of the day ; the desc^n^ding sun has re- 
leased him from his toU, ^nd he is hastening hon;ie to 
enjoy repose. Half- way down the lane, by the side of 
which stands his cottage^ his children run to meet 
him ; one hfi quries, and one he leads. The com- 
panion of his humble life is ready to furnish him with 
his plain repast. See his toUworn countenance ^- 
sumes an air of cheerfulness j his hardships are forgot- 
ten ; fatigue vanishes : he^ eats and is satisfied ; the 
evening ^r, he walks "^th uncovered head around 
his garden ; enters again and retires to rest, and '^ the 
^^ rest of a labouring man is sweet whether he eat lit« 

V tie or much.** Inhabitant of this lonely, lowlj 
dwelling, who can be indifierent to thy co^ifort ^ 

V Peace be to this house." 

^ Let not amUtion mock thy useful toH^ 

^ Thy HOMStT jioys, and deadny obscure ; i « 

^ Nor giundeur hear vbb a dMainful amUib 
^ The short and simple annals of the poor.^ 

Secondly. We may consider this l^ppiness in refer- 
/ence to the apflictions of lips. It looks like ^ 
general remedy fomiflied by the landness of Provi« 
4ence, to alleviate the troubles which irom vaiious 
>qtrarters we unavoidably feel while passing througli 
this world of vanity and vexation of s{urit. How ma* 
ny little sighing vacancies does it fill up ! How many 
cloudy nervous vapours does , it chase from the mind jl 
Whose frowns and gloom will not the mirth of a child 
dissipate \ What corroding anxieties will not retire 
from the attentions of a virtuous wife ! What a con- 
solatidn is her gentleness ! Who has not experience4 
Its healing, enlivening influence in the day of sickness, 
and in the hour of depression ! Is your confidence fre- 
quently checked by the b^eness and dissimulation of 
mankind ? Here your candour recovers, and yoii are 
reconciled to yoijr fellow-creatures again. . Does th^ 
behaviour of too many with whom you have to dqi 
cherifh a dissatisfadion which sours life ? Here a se^ 
renity, a sweetness spreads over the mind from thesimt 
plicity, openness, and Idndness with which you are 
surrounded. Are you repulsed by others ? Here you 
are received with open and welcome arms. Does the 
fiorm rage without ? Behdd an asylum within. Here 
we realize an emblem of the Saviour ; it says to us^ 
^* In the world ye fhall have tribulation, but in me ye 
f* fhall have peace.** " Here the wicked cease from 
*• troubling,* and ^ here ** the weary are at reft/' 

Thirdly. We may consider tbis tiappiness in ref- 


eiit this, afr m^B be insipid, aH Wffl be meless. Yonr 
dtles of cfistindion, and your robes of office, ?j^ laid 
aside befiorc you enter ycmr own dwelfing. There 
die senator, the minister, the lawyer, draw back ; and 
we behold^ oilly the husband, the father, tSie man X 
"fhere you^ stand only in those relations in which na- 
ture has placed youv^ There you feel only your per- 
sonal charaAer*. What remsuns after these dedudions 
are made, ascertains your value* Tou are to judge of 
your worth by the honour you command where rank 
does not overawe ; <lf your importance by the esteem: 
atid adouration you engage wh^n deprived of all ad- 
ventitious appendages \ of your happiness by the re- 
source you possess to give cheerfulness and charms ta' 
those returning hours which no s];dendour gilds^ 
which no fame inspires, and in which all the attra^ons 
ef popularity fail; for what would it avail you to 
live in popular opinion, and to> be followed with ap- 
plause home to your very door, if you were then to be 
MnqM^led to continue in the element of discord, the' 
seat of strife, the house of bondage and corredion? 

;iiie yourselves prosperous in your a£^rs ; trade 
pouring in Wesitb, your grounds bringing forth plen- 
^ftttty, yomr cup rtinning over* ^fisery under your 
«wn roof would be sufficient to canker your gold and 
silver; to corrupt your abundance; to embitter eve- 
cy pleasure ; to make you groan even on a mostly sofa^ 
^ AU this availeth me nothing !'^ 

Sufferings from strangers are less acute than from 
finends^ David magnifies -the affid&on be Mdured by 

876 Domc/Uc Hofpinisi. [llxiu xuH^ 

the nearness of tbe quarter firojn vMdi |t came. ^ It 
^* was not am enemy that reproached me, then I could 
^* have borne it ; neither was it he that hated me j 
^* that did magnify himself againft me; then I would 
^^ have hid myself from. him. But it was thou, mine 
c^equaly myguide^ and my acquaintance/' This cir-^ 
cumfiance gave it all the fliock of surprize, all ,the 
bitterness of disappointment, all the breach of obUga^ 
tion. It is bad tg be wounded any where ; but to. be 
^^ wounded in the house of a friend'' is mentioned as 
a peculiar aggravation. . Np foes. are like those of '^ a 
^' man's household;" their situation favours hoftiU* 
ty i they can choose the moment of .attack ; ,they caii . 
repeat the blow ; they can injure imper^qstibly. And 
what can be so dreadful as to be associated with p&t^ 
sons from whom you cannot separate, and with whom* 
you cannot live ? What are occasional, smiles againfl; 
habitual frowns ? What is friendfhip abroad agadnii- 
enmity at home? What is it for a man to be com- 
fortable where he visits, and to be tormented where»he 
dwells ? If our happiness flow from others, and. that, 
it does in no small degree is unquestionable, it wi^ ne- 
cessarily follow, that it must be most affe6bed by tho^ 
to whom we are most seriously related, and with whom* 
we most intimately blend; not those whom we acct*- 
dentally meet, but those with whpm we <bily reside j 
not those who touch one part of our charader only^ 
but those who press us on every side. 

Fourthly. Let us consider it in refief ence to ths 


the dagger of these, th^re is no better inreservadve 
than the Attraftioas of a fsimily. The more a man 

5€R. XIX.] Domestic Happinesi* 977 

feels his M^elfare lodged in his own house, the more 
will he prize and love iu The tnore he is attached td 
his wife and children, the less will he risk their peac^ 
and comfort hf hassardous speculations, and inad en« - 
terprises in trade: A life of inhdcency, regularity; 
and repose in the .affections, of his family will check 
the rpvings of restless ambition^ add s^ecure him from 
the fblHes of the pride 6f life. "Evil communica* 
** tions corrupt good manners j" but these pleasing 
((x>rd3 will draw hini back from " the council of the 
^ ungodly/* ** the way of .sinnersi*' *' the seat of the 
*f scornful.*' In vain will he be tempted to go abroad 
for company or for pleasure, when home supplies hini 
with both. *^ And what,** says he, "are the amuse-^ 
^ ments and dissipations of the world ? I have better 
** enjoyments already,) enjoyments springing fresh . 
[ from the growth, the improvement^ the culture of 
otir rising chairge^ from our rural ws^lks, from ouf 
socid evenings, from our reading and conversation^ 
" from our cheerful lively mutual devotion. Here 
" are pleasures perpetually i*enewing, and which nev- 
"er cloy. Here ate entertainments plate^d easily 
" within our reach, and whicli require no laborious 


^^ preparatien, no costly arrangement. Here I ac^ 
^^ knowledge only the dominion of nature i and fol* 
*' low only the bias of inclination. Here I have no 
*^ weaknesses to hide, ho mistakes to dread. Her& 
^^ my gratifications are attended with no disgrace, no 
^^ remorse. They leave no stain, no sting behind* 
" I fear no reproach from iliy understanding, no reck- 
*' oning from my conscience j my prayers are not 
" hindered* My. heart is xiiadft better. I ua soft Ai- 

S7i Domestic tiappinesj. fSiR. XitL 

« ed, prepared for duty, sdlured to the TTirone of 
^^ Grace. And can I be induced to exchange all' 
" this, O ye votaries of the worlds for your anxieties, 
^^ confusion, agitations, and espense ? Shall I part 
^ with my ease and. independence, for the trammels c€ 
^ your silly forms, the encumbrance of your fashions, 
•• the hypocriisies of your crowds t Shall 1 resign my 
•* freedom for the privilege of your davery, which so* 
•* often compels you to disguise your sentiments, to 
•* subdue your genuine feelings, to applaud folly, to 
^ yawn under a lethargy of pleasure, and to sigh for 
•* the hour of retirement and release ? Shall !" sacrifice 
•• my innocent endearments, to pursim the fetal rou. 
^ tine of your dissipation, the end of x^hich is heavi- 
^ ness, and from which you I'eturii dijprived of season- 
^ able rest, robbed of peace of^ mind, galled by reflec- 
** tion, disinclined to prayer, feeling the presence of 
^ God irksome, and the approach of death intole*^- 


*< Dbtnestic Happifieas^ thou only bliss 
<( Of Paradise that has escaped the fall l' 
"Thou art not known where pleasure is adoi'd,- 
'< That rbeling goddess with a zoneless waist, 
«< Forsaking thee, what shipwreck have wd made 
<^ Of honour! dignity^ and &k itmown '* 

Who can help lamenting to see the valuable enjoy'-' 
ments of home s^rificed to a fondness for amusementSf 
and a rage for indiscriminate intercourse with a false 
unfeeling world ! But so it is. People were never 
mor^ social^ and never less dqmestic than they now 
are. The phrensy has reached ^ ranks^ and degrees^ 
Our females are no longer keepers at home. Even 

(jChiUbrca ve led into these drdes of infktiKidon, and 
;xiade to despise the simple and natural manners Of 
voyth. Prom m^ui^oas and shops and common dwell-- 
|ngs we see increasing nuBa})ers pouring forth to balls, 
jand assemblies, and routs^ and concerts, and public 
.spedades, and theatrical entertainments; every ereso 
ing has some foreign xJaim« 

** Who win shew me any good P' is the ory. TTie 
jBforld pasttng along hears it, and says. Follow me, em« 
jalate this splendour, mix with this throng, pursue 
these cfiversions. We comply. We run, and we 
run. in vain. * The prize was nigh us when we began ^ 
but our foUy drew us away from it. Let us return 
home, and we shall find it. Let us remember that 
happiness pre£irs calmness to noise, and the shades to 
publicity r that it depends m<H-e upon things cheap 
rand conunon, than upon things expensive and singu- 
lar } that it is not an exotic which we are to import 
from the ends of the earth, but a plant which grows 
in our own field and in our own garden. Every man 
may be made happy, if you could mduce him to make 
91 propw estimate of happiness ; if you could keep 
him from judging after outward appearances ; if you 
could persuade him to stoop, rstther than to aspire, to 
kneel, rather than to fly. To confine us to our re« 
* spedive stations, God has wisely rendered happiness 
only attainable in them ; were it placed, not in the 
•way of duty, but on the other side of the boundary, 
the very position would lead us astray, and seduce us 
to transgress. ' Btat home b not always heaven, nor fs 
domestic life necessarily produftive of domestic happl* 
liess. Hence it berames needful. 

390 BmettU HaffiHeu, ^%ziu ;six. 

Part IL To apefEL its sources, Md examine ok 

Whzt it DEPENDS. 

It does not depend upon ranr and affjluencb. 
It is ' confined to no particular condition ; tlie servant 
may enjoy it as well as the master; the mechanic as 
iirell as the nobleman. It exhilarates the cottage as 
well as the palace. What am I saying? What says^ 
^mmon opinion f Does it not tnvariably assodate 
iOiore enjoyment with the lowly XQoi^ tban with the 
towering manuon ? Ask those who have risen from in- 
ferior life, whether their satisfadion has increase^ 
with th^r circumstances} whether they have never 
advanced %9 th^ bipw of the eminence they have a»* 
'^nded, and Ipddng down sighed, <^ Ah \ happy rale, 
^^ from how much was I sheltered while I was in 
** thee !" Th^e can be iqdeed but one opinion' coq- 
^rning the wretchedness of those who have . not the 
jnecessaries of liij^. But ** Natvre is content with lit- 
*^ tie, suid prace with le^." ^^ B^ter is a dinner of 
}^ herbs where love is^ tha^ a stalled px aod hatred 
V therewith.*'. ^^ Jitter is a dry morsel and qvuet- 
^ ness therewith, than a hoij^se fuU of sacrifices, and 
^^ strife." . This blessecUiess .thep results ^ot from 
worldly things j and jvire mention this the more readi^ 
ly, because soQ^e seem ^raid to enter a atate honoura- 
ble in all, becaiise tl^ey have b^ore tbem no cqpeniog^ 
pf wealth. Others dread the increase of children as 
an accession of misery {^ while many . are waiting for 
a larger fortune, a^ moi^e spadouK house, and morf 
^endid furniture, befbr^ they can .ev^n THma^ ci 
enjoying themselves. 

We may also observe^ that some individiials se^en 

much t&ott qualified to ei^ojr this Kaj^ness than oth- 
ers. Some have little tafte for any thifigi They wet 
jmde up of ftupidities ; they hiiye eyes, but see not ; 
earsy but hear not* They are the autooKitons of na^ 
' ture ; the machines of Providence.; d^ing the work 
,;^which the conftitutiQi) of the world requires of theai» 
iic(Void of/any l|vely emotions. If they ever fedt, it is 
.«ii)y from the ioqiressipp eif something tumultuous and 
iriol^t i if they are ever pleased* it is only by hdi- 
^tious joys. But others are fuU of life and sen^bility ; 
. they ace susceptible of delicate impressions ; they 
Jore every thing tranquil ; reliih every thing "simple.; 
.enjoy every thing natural ; and are touched and di»* 
^^yed by a thonsaoid pleasing €3|:ci)m(lance$ wl^ch con- 
;yey nothing to others. 

. There are however some things which have an in- 
ifispdnsaUe influence hi i^'oducing and maintaining^ 
-the- w^fare of families, whicb £dl more property un- 
-der our cultivation ; Order, Good Temper, Good 
ScQSe^ IMigious Principles. These will bless thy dwel- 
Imf^ and ^ thy ^^ tabefiiade with the voice of re« 
i^f joicing.** # 

lirft. Vnthout ORDER you can never rule well 
your own house.' •? God is hot the God of confusion/' 

' He loves order ; order pervades all his works. He 
overlooks nothing. « He calleth the ftars by their 

•^ names ;'* •* he numbereth the hairs of our head/' 
^^ He appointeth the moon for seasons, and the sun 
?• knoweth his going down/* There is no discord, nb 
daflung in all the immense, the amazing whole ! He 
has interposed his authority, and enjoined us *' to do 
** eyery thin dec;ently and in carder/* ' And^his com- 

|»8f BonuiHc He^^$s. [Smueu^ 

ynand ii fop&d^ m r^ard to oqr advaofiig^ J^: 
.calls upon you to l^y down rul^,. and to walk bf* 
ithem ; to assign every tlung its proper pboe» its allows 
ance of time» its degree of importance ^ to . ob^enne 
fcgidarity in your meals, in your derodnins, in youjc 
e9^>ense8. From (Mrder sprang frf^pHstfy economf^ 
charity. I^rom xnrde^ residt beauty, Juraaony, coa- 
paxwoice. Without ordier tliere gm be no gcyretiiM 
inent^ no h^qpi^ness } peace flies frcmi. con£uskm ; dic^ 
order entangles all o^r afiairs, hides from us the end, 
and keeps from us t^e doe ; we kse self-posses^u^ 
and become miserable, becai;i^ perpleaced, inunried^ 
oppressed, easily provoked^ /. 

Secondly. Many things wQI arise to ttf yourTJSs^ 
NR ; and he is unqualified for soeiai J^e who has n<^ 
nile oyer l^s own ^irit : ^ whp cymiot bfaary to use 
the words of x good wiitar,. ? die£»ttltiea of \m fiel* 
^ low-creatures imth. coimaoif charity, aa4 the vcasae^ 
^* ations of life with conunon patittice*'' Peier, address- 
ing wives, reminds them th^t ^ the. ornament of a nseeli: 
*^4md quiet spirit is in the sight of God of great price.*' 
And Solomon often mentions the opposite bleniiihr. in 
tttuftrating the fem^ charader. ^^It is-b^er to 
^* dwell in a comer of the houie*t<^, than with a biawl«) 
^ ing woman in a vide house/' ^ The contentions of 
** a wife are a continual dropping," and 9p 6q. . We 
&6ukl deem it invidious to exeuipl^ this imperifedioa 
iu one sex only ; we would address you equally ; and 
call upon you as you value a peaceful ^bpde, to main- 
tain a omtroul over your tempers. Bew^kre of passion ; 
say little when under irritatian ; turn aside ; take time 
^0 fefle^i: and to cooU ^ word qpokea unadvisedljr 

#ith your lips may produce] a wotind wtikh week^ 
cannot Keal. *^ I would reprove thee,^ said the phK 
K)sopher, ** ^^re I not a*gry,** It is a noble sugges-^' 
tlon. Apply it in your reprehension of servants, and 
iiorrection 6i thildreh. But there is something against 
m&Ai joxi should- be more upoh your guard than oc« 
casionsj saffies of passion ^ I rtean habitual pettishness^ 
The former ihay be compared to a* brisk shower which' 
& soon over ; the latter toa sleet drizzlirig rain driving' 
do the day long. Tte mite^ef v^ich is such a dis- 
turber of social enjoyment, is not the angef wUch ir 
lengthened into malice, or vented in reVtei^; but 
that which oozes out in oMistatit fretfulness, murmur-^ 
ifigand complaint ; it if that wiiich renders a man 
not fortuidable, but tiouUetcmie t it is that ixiiicb 
converts him^ not ihto a tiger, but into agftat. €rOoil 
humour is the cdrdiai^ the balm of Hfe. The possessor^ 
of it spreads satisfiNstton wfaerkVer he cbmes, and he^ 
partakes oi the pleasure he gives. Easy in himself, he^ 
i^ seldom oflfended with thote around him. Calm and^ 
placid witlHU, every thing without w^ars the most fa- 
'vourafale appearance ; while the mind, a^tated by 
peevishness or passion, IBee a ruffled pool^ ^en reftscts^ 
every agreeable and lovely image false and distorted* 

Thircfly. The influence and advantage of oooiy 
8£NSE are incalculable. What streams, what vessels 
are the noisy? The shallow,' the empty. Whb are' 
the unyielding ? The ignorant, who mistake obstina^ 
cy for firmness. Who are the infalfible t They who' 
have not reflection enough to see how liable and how 
l&ely we are to err j they who cannot comprehend 
how much it adds to a man's wisdom to discover, and 

jfMl. DmMic HafptnesS'. [Sxri - xak: 

to his hawiSktf Xo aduio^edge a fault* Good sento. 
win preferve us from ceosoriousness ; will lead us tei. 
dislingttish drcumstances ; to (draw tkmgs^ from the 
4»^k situation of prefudice which rendered them, fright- 
hiy that we may. candi^y mrvey them in. open day*. 
Good sense will keep us, from looking after Viflkmary 
perfectioa ; *^ The infirmities I behold 9re not pecuHir 
^f to my <x]nnection8, otliers if equally near wqtuld betnty 
^ the sanae ; unairersal e^cellenee is unattainable ; no 
<f one can fdea$e in evefy thing. Awl who am I to de^. 
^ xsOnA a freedom from imperfections in others^ 
^^whtte I am encompassed with infirmities myself 1'^ 
Good sense will lead us to study dispositions, pecufiarl- 
ties, accooEimodatiotts ; to M^eigh consequences ; to 
determine what to fibserve and What to pass by ^ 
wheti to be immoveable and when to yield. Good . 
sense will produce good mainnekB ; Will keep us from 
taking freedoms and handling things roughly ^ for 
love is ddicate, confidence is tender. Good sense- 
WiM never agitate claims of superiority ; it will teach 
us to ^'submit ourselves one to another in the fear 
*^ of God.^' Good sen^ will lead pei^ons to regard 
their own duties, rather than to recommend those of ■ 

Fourthly. We must go beyond all this, and re* 
mind you of those religious principles by which 
you are to be governed. These are to be found in 
the word of God ; and as many as walk According to 
this rule, mercy and peace shall be upod them. God 
has engaged that if you will walk in his way, you 
shall find rest unto your souls. If it be said, there are 
happy families wthotlt religion, I would answer. First, 

Sen. SIX.] ikmatU Happiness. Stfi 

/There is a differeoG^ between appearance^ andreafity. 

Secondly^ If we bdieve the Scripture^ thk is imposat- 

^le ; ^^ tbe way of tran^essor? is hard ^ there b no 

^♦.pttice^sadth my God, unto the wicked." Thirdly, 

JLeligioa secures those duties, upon the performance 

0f . wliich the happiness of househdds depends^ Would 

any min have reason to ccxnplain of servants, of dnk- 

dren, or of any other relation, if they were all influx 

«nced by the Spirit, and regulated by the didbtes of 

the Gospel ? Much of refigion lies in the discharge 

,of these relative duties j and to enforce these, reii^on 

brings forward itiotives the most powerful^ and al* 

4pays binding, calls in conscience, and God, and heav^^ 

^en, and hell. Fourthly, Religion attrads the divine 

blessing, ami all we possess or enjoy depends upon . its 

smiles. God can elevate or sink us in the esteem of 

others ; he can send us basinets or withhold it } he 

ean command or forbid thieves to rob, and flames to 

devour us ; he can render all we have satisfying, <^ 

distasteful, and they that honour him he wiU honouft 

^^ The house of the wicked shall be overthrown, but 

^ the tabernacle of the upright shall flourish^ The 

'' curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked : 

*' but he blesseth the habitation of the just/' Fmally, 

Religon prepares us for all events. If we succeed, 

it keeps our prosperity from destroying us ; if we suf* 

fer, it preserves us from £iinting in the day of adversir 

ty. It turns our losses into gains ; it exaks our joys 

into pnuses ; it makes prayers of our sighs ; ^nd in 

all the uncertainties of time and clianges of the world, 

it sheds . on the mind a *^ peace which passeth all un* 

^ fl^tanding.'' It unites us to each other, ^not only 

A A a' 

^8^ Bdmesiic Happiness. [Ser. tii^^ 

^ ci^atures, but as Christians; not only as strangers 
arid pilgrims tipon earth, but as heirs of glory, hoxi^ 
our> and immortality. For you must separate; it is 
useless to keep back the mortifying truth. It was the 
condition upon which your union was fiormed. O 
man ! it was a mortal finger upon which yoii placed 
the ring, vain emblem of perpetmty, O wonwi'^! 
it was a dying hand that imposed it. After so many 
mutual and- growing attachments, to separate ! What 
is ta'be done here-? O- Religion, Religion, come and 
refieveus'in a case where every other assistance fails; 
come and teach us^ not to* wrap up our chief happi- 
ness in th^ creature ^ come and' bend our wills to 
the pleasure of the Almighty, and^ enable ua to say^ 
^* It is the Lord,' let Him do what seemeth him good ; 
^* the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away, an4 
^ blessed be the name' of the Lord ;'* come ^nd tell 
us that th€ly are disposed of infinitely to their- advan- 
tage; that the separation's temporary ; that a time of 
reunion will come> that we shall see thdr faces, and 
hear their vcHces again. 

Take two Christians who have been' walking toi 
geth<er like ^^ 2iechariah' and Elizabeth in all the com- 
*' mandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless/' 
Is the conneftion dissolved by death ? No* We take 
the Bible along with us, and inscribe on their tombi 
«(Heasant in life and in death not divided/' Is the 
one removed before the other ? He becomes an attrac- 
tion to the other ; he draws him forward, and is 
wsdtiug to *^ receive him into everlasting habitatbns.'' 
Let us suppose a pious family re-uniting together, after 
ft^owing each other successively down to the gcave. 

£eR. xi'X.3 

Domestic "Bappiness* 


How unlike every present meeting! Here our^ter- 
course is chilled with the certainty of separation. 
There we shall meet to part no more; we shall be 
for ever with each other, and for ever with the Lorltl 
Now afflidion often enters our circle, and the distress 
of one is the concern of all. Then me shall ^^ rejoice 
'" with them that rejoice," but not " weep with them 
^* that weep j" for " all tears shall be wiped from our 
*^ eyes, and the tiays of our mourning ^all be ended.*' 

Come then, my dear hearers, and invite the religion 
of the blessed Jesus, this one thin^ needful, this uni- 
versal benefador of mankind. It has '^ the promise 
^^ Qf the life that now is, and of that which is to bome/^ 
k secures our individual and our relative happiness; 
it brings peace into our bosoms, and joy into our 
dwellings. Let us reserve to pursue it ourselves ; let 
ijis enforce it upon . our connexions ; let us dedicate 
our tabernacles to God ; offer the morning and eyex^ 
ing sacrifice of prayer and of praise ; and whatever 
be the determination of others, let us say for oi]^rselves^ 
^* As foj: me ^d my hoyse^ wp will serve the Lord," 




J 'I i .. 

**■■ -— *■■ 




2 Peter i. 11. 

nm> TUB ErBBtASttva f^90Dom OF an LqxD jm Sjrioux Jssux 

MY brethren, among the various mo- 
lives with which Revelation abounds^ there are none 
more solemn and impressive than those which are de- 
rived from— -De AtH. Hence the sacred writers often * 
refer to it* They remind us of the suddenness of its 
arrival. They forewarn us of the nearness of its 
approach. They also intimate the importance of its 
consequences as terminating this state of trial, sealing 
up our charafters, and transmitting them to the judg- 
ment of the great day, to be opened and published be- 
fore an assembled world. 

The apostle Peter urges the m anker of our dying. 
He would have us die well, not only in a state of sal- 
vation but of peace and triumph ; ** So an entrance 
" shall be ministered unto you abundantly, into the 
** everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus 

Stu* ue.3 Happiness In peaib. S89 

'^ Christ/' To do justice to this subject, it will be 
pdCessafy to consider three things. L The state to 
which the Christian looks forward, ^^ the everlafiing 
^* kingdom of our Lord^ and Saviour Jesus Chrift/' 
n. The mode of his admission, ^' an entrance minis- 
^^tered abundantly/' III. The condition on which 
the privilege depends, it is the consequence of some* 
thing clearly impUed ; *^ So, So an entrance shai^l 
'^ be administbrbd unto you abundantly, into 
f^the everlasting i^inodom of our iford and 
^* Saviour Jesus Christ." 

I. Chriftians, we know very little of ^^ the hope 
V which is laid up for us in heaven ;** it is " the glory 
*^ which shall be revealed in us.'' While we are in 
this weak ftate of flefh and blood, the full disclosure 
would be too daaszling for the feeble eye. It would 
also, by making too ftrong an impression, operate inju^ 
riously, unhinging us from our present connexions, 
and depriving those concerns which demand a subor- 
dinate fhare of attention, of all power to (Irike and en^ 
gage our minds. ^* We walk by faith, not by sight ;"• 
but ** we know in part.'* We have some representa- 
tions of our future blessedness accommodated to our 
faculties, and derived from scenes with which we are 

It is a kingdom, a ftate of royal empire, expanding 
over a better, a heavenly country, where there is no 
curse } whose laws are equity and perfedion ; whose 
riches and honours and resources are infinite ; whoso 
subjects are ^U wise and good ; living together as 
^ends, all princes themselves, all happy, escaped 

> . 

3BO Happimsi in Death. . [S8«« i^&« 

fromihe troubles of life^ the infinpities smd diseases 
of body, the diftresses and accusations of conscience, 
tjie remains of ignorance and of sin, and innumerable 
vexations, which now make .us {;roan, and long to 
emigrate thither. Two things are spoken of this king'* 
dom, which deserve remark. 

The firft concerns its permanency and dmcadim.-Hr' 
It is ^^ the £V£iuuASTiNb kingdom of our Lord and 
^ Saviour/' Every thing here is perifliable and tran- 
sitory. We tremble to look at our possessions and 
enjoyments, left we ihould see them in motion, spread- 
ing t;heir wings to flee away. Many already in talk- 
tng of their comforts are compelled to go back ; ^ I 
^' HAD a husband, children, health, affluence, and I 
^ saidt I shall die in my neft.*^ 

As it is with individuals and famifies^ so it is with 
communities. ^ The faihion of this wo^ld passethi 
** away.*' Where now is the dty whose top was tp 
r^ch to heaven and defy a second flood ? What have 
become qi the Idngdpms of the earth, whose fame fills 
the page of hiftory ? The Assyrian, Perdan, Grecian^ 
Roman empires arose^ a^niflied mankind for a sea- 
^A, V^ disappeared. And not only the moft magr 
qjficent and durable productions of human power and 
skill, but even the eftabliflied frame of nature fliall be 
demoliflied ; ^^ The heavens (hall p^ss away with a 
^ great noise, and the elements fliall mdt with fervent 
^ heat, the earth also, and the works that are therein 
<c fliiall be burnt up. Neverthdess, we according tor. 
^ his promise look for new heavens and a new earthy' 
f^ wherein dwelleth righteousness.'' Hieo follows a' 
|dngdom not marred by sin^ not HaUe to dedeasioa 

SkR. xiif.3 SStfpinest m Diitb. d9t 

or change ; a kingdom which cannot be fludsen, se^ 
eufe from internal decay and external violence ; sr 
kingdom prepared from the foundation of the wbrid^ 
smd which shall survive its dissolution, and having^ 
^een the sun turned into darkness and the moon inta 
Mood, ihall flow on throng eternal ages. 

The gf ^ter any good is Which we posses^, the mor& 
does it awaken ouf concern, and the mtee anxioutf 
are we to inquire ^er security and tenure. But 
here is no room' for apprehension ; the happiness is as 
Certain a^ it isT e!ccefient, a^ durable as it is vaft ; and 
the'scriptiire neirer overlooks this important consider- 
ation. Is it " meat ?" It ** endureth td ^erlafiing 
^ Kfe." Is it a « ftreasnre ?' ^ Moth and ruft can- 
^ not corrupt, nor thieves break througfar and ftbal.** 
Is it ** a crown 6f gloly ?*' It ** fadeth not aWay." 
jfe it a **' house ?'* It is " a building of God, not made 
** with hands, etemsd irt the heavens.^ Ts it a " dty ?^ 
It is* ^' a city which hkth foundartbns; whose builder 
•*and whose maker is Odd.** Is it ar *« kingdom ?»^ 
It is « everlasting.'* 

Behold the secoild circumstance With regard* to this 
blessed state. It is '^ the everlastfhg kingdom of our 
•* Lord and S-AViofTTR Jestts Christ^" And what 
means this relation ? It is surely designed to distin- 
guish him from a mere possessor, and to intimate pe- 
culiar prerog?.tivte, residehce, admini^ration. It is 
his by d^m; As the Son of God he is " Heir of alt 
^ thmgs : being made so much better than the ang^, 
^ as he hath by inheritance obtained a ntore ezcef- 
^ knt name than they. For unto which of the angets 
^said he at any ti<ne, Thou art my Son, this day have 

SM kappk^u kl Dedth. [B^wu 

^ I begotten thee ? And agaki^ I yi^ be to bin m 
^ Father^ and he shall be to me a Son ? And aggia^ 
</when he bringeth in the first^begottes into the 
^ world, he a^ith. And let afl the angels of God wor- 
¥ siup him. And of the angeb he saith, Wbd mak- 
^< eth his angels spirits, and his ministefs a flame of 
^ fire. But «nto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O 
V. God^ is lor ever aqd evet ; a sceptre of righteous- 
^^ ness K the sceptre of thy kit^gdom : thou, hast loved 
tVrighteousness,. and hated iniquity; therefore God 

V .^efi thy God hath anoipted thee v^ith the oil of 
l^.gladn^ps above t;hy feUows.'' . For under another 
view he acqqired it as the reward of his obedience 
and sufferii^. '^ For unto the angels hath he not 
^ put in subjection the world to come, of which we 
*^ speak ? But we see Jesus^ who was made. a. little 
t^ lower than the angels, for .the suflTering of death, 
^ crowned with glory and honour/' " Who, being 
^* in the form of God, thought it no robbery to be 
*< equal with God ; but made himself of no reputa- 
** tion, and took upon himself the form of a servant* 
^^ and was made in the likeness of men ; and being 
^^ found In iashion as a man, he humbled himself, and 
^/ became obec^ent unt;p death, even the death of thof 

V cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted 
f^ him, and given him a name which is above every 

napiej that at the name of Jesus every knee fhould 
bow, of things in heaven, a^d things in earth, and 
things under the earth ; and .that every tongue should 
^^ confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of 
*' God the Father." He has^ now the c^sppsal of the 
9fl|c^s and privileges of thQ empire among his faithful 


StR. ±±S] kapptness in Death. 393 

foHpwers, This was surely the idea of the dying thief, 
wheh ^e prayed, "Lord remember me when thou 
** comest into thy kingdom •/* and of Paul, when he 
said, " and the Lord shall deliver itie from every eVil 
"MTork, and preserve ftle Unto his heavenly king- 
" doni." He is the Spvereign ; and there he rules, 
riot as heW " in the liiidst of his enemies." No trea- 
son, no sedition, no disaffection ther^. All are ador- 
iiig •and praising him ; ** Worthy Is the Lamb that 
^^ was slain to receive honour, and riches, and wisdom, 
^ and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing." 
Inhere he fei^s immediately, always in view, and ac- 
cessible to all. There he appears in Our nature, the 
principle, the image, the pledge of our glory and hap« 
plness. He has taken possession in our name ; and is 
prepli'ing a place fdr us ; and will by and by re- 
ceive us to HIMSELF, that where he is, there wb may 
be also. 

tt has been often said, " that however we may dif-^ 
*^ fer from each other, we all hope for the same heav* 
'** en." But nothing can be more false. The believ* 
er in Jesus, who 'loves him above all, and places the 
whole of his happiness in him, he, and he alone, real- 
ly desires the heaven of the Bible ; a pure, spiritual^ 
CHRISTIAN heaven, the essence of which is the pres- 
ence and glory of the Redeemer. This is the heav^ 
en he demanded for all his followers ; " Father, I 
*^ will that they also whom thou hast given me, be with 
*" me where I airi to behold my glory." This is the 
heaven Paul desired for himself; "I long to depart, 
**to be with Christ, which is far better." And such is 

the disposition of every true follower of the Lord Jq* 

B B b 

sus ; .^^ This is ehQUgh ; this is the heaven of Hear-. 
*• en } there I shall see Him who is altogether lovely : 
^^ thejre I shall behol4 Him who gave, hb life a ransom 
^' for. me: there I shall approach the Lamb in the 
*^ midst of the throne, who will ieed me and lead me 
^< to living fountains of water :- there I shall be like^ 
^^ him, for I shall see him as he is : there I shall be for 
** ever with the iord/' Haviti^ considered the 
state to which we are encouraged t6 look forward, let' 
Qs observe. 

Hi The desirable niode ' of admissiori. And* bercr 
uti^e read' of an *NTRANckj ministered abun- 

What is the Eirt^RANCE ?■ Unqufekionabljr-^Deatli. 
•* By one man sin entered into tlje world, and deatk 
*^ by sin ; arid so death hath passed upon all men, be- 
••'cauie all have sinned." With two exteptionsl. 
tfiis has been the way of all the earth. ** Enoch wafr 
** trinslated? that he should not see death.**' ^Elijah 
**■ went up by a whirlwind into heaven/^' They depart- 
ed without the separation of soul and body,' and knew 
nothing of ** pains and groans and dying strife." 
They were not unclothed', but clothed upon ; and in 
tKem mortality was swallowed up of life. But only 
one passage remains for us ; and this, not an easy and 
ah alluring, but a rough and a gloomy one. A messen- 
ger brings us to God^ but it is "the King of Ter- 
"rors;" we enter the land flowing with milk andr 
JiOney, but it is through ^* the valley of the shadow of 
"death.'* . 

But you should remember that your entrance into^ 

3fiit. KX.^ Sdpptms in Deafh. S9S 

the invisible world is apministered ; ^^ Are not two 
*< sparrows sold for a farthing ? and one of the^i ^shaU 
iK)t fall to the ground without your Father. Fear 
not therefore, ye are of more ^value than many 
*' sparrows/' "^he** very "hairs of your head arc 
" 9II numbered,** "Preciou« in the sight of the 
^* XiOrd is the death of jiis saints ;'* and he orders a]) 
the circunistances attending it. Not only is the will 
\o{ God concerned in the general sentence of mortal* 
ity pronounced upon us, but death always receives 9 
^particular commission from him. Hence, in a similar 
condition, one is taken and another left. The circum* 
stance of time is fixed by him ; ^^ The number of 
^^ our modths is with him.'' The place is determined 
l^y his purpose* The me^s and the manner of our 
Removal are disposed by his pleasure. Whether we 
are to die young or dd ; whether we are to. be seized 
at home or abroad ; whether we shall be carried off 
^y accidents or disease j whether we ^all expire slow- 
ly or ^ddenly, are s^ecrets impenetrable to us, bu( 
aU is wisely and kindly regulated bjr^his .Providence. 

The death of some is -^distinguished by indulgences 
;:^nd honours not vochsafed to all ; and this is what 
the apostle means by an entrwce ministered unto us 
^UNDANTL-T. FoT all do uot enter alike. Some 
shipwrecked, are washed by the surge half dead on 
the shore, or reach it .dinging terrified to a plai& i 
others, with crowded sails aud with a preserved catgo 
of ^i^es and perfumes, beautifully, gallantly enter 
the desired haven. Some are scarcely saved, and 
some are more than conquerors. A triumph was not 
decreed to every Roman general upon his return to 


396 Happiness in Death. (Sevl. xKm 

the capital. Can we imagine the martyrs issuing from 
the flames entered heaven like a Christian, who had 
been often tempted to conceal his religion to escape a 
sneer or a frown ? We may observe a remarkable di- 
versity even in the deaths of common believers. Some 
die only safe, while their state is unknown to them- 
selves, and suspei^ed by others. • In some, hope and 
fear alternately prevadl. Spme feel a peace which pas&l 
eth all understanding, while some exult with a joy un- 
speakable and full of glory. And in these is fulfilled 
the lan^age of the promise, ^' With gladness and re* 
joicing shall they be brought : they shall enter into 
the King's palace." They ne *^ joyful in glory** 
before they have reached it, and *' shout aloud upon 
** their" dying "beds."* God deals with them- as he 
did with Moses, when he led him -to the top of Pisgah 
and gave him a prospeift of the holy liind ; only witk 
this difference, his view was a substitute for posslsssion 
while their look is to render the passage easier, and 
to make them hasten to the goodly mountain of Leb* 
anon. Such a death the apostle valued more than 
the continuance of life ; all his concern was to " fin. 
^^ ish his course with joy ;V and the assured hope of 
this would animate thousands, and reconcile thetn to 
all the trials they endure. It is desirable, and valuable, 
both with regard to themselves and others. 

They will need it themselves. It is a new, a tiy- 
ing, and an awful thing to die. THey will find dying 
to be work enough, without having doubts and fears* 
to encounter. The distresses of life admit of allevia- 
tion and diversion ; but it Is otherwise with the pains of 
death. Worldly pursuits are broken off, sensual pleas* 

Siiu ' XX.3 Haziness in Bsath* SSft 

ures are excluded, conversation is difficult, friends are 
anxious and fearful ; and if you' have no Joy spring- 
ing up in you from a spiritual source, your condition 
is deplorable and desperate. Would you die in dark- 
ness, or in the*Ught of God's countenance ? Wbuld 
you enter another world, ignorant whether you shall 
step into endless. happiness or misery; or depart, ablef 
to say as you look back with a smile upon survivorS| 
** Whither I go ye know, and the way ye know V* 

You should long for this also on the behalf of oth* 
ers. This is the last time you can do any thing in 
serving God and your generation j but by this yoi^ 
inay be rendered peculiarly useful.. Your dying looks 
and your dying words may make impressions which 
shall never be erased. Some who have refused to 
hear sermons, have been convince^ by a dying bed. ^ 
The, religion which can produce such patience and re- 
signation, coupge and joy, has become {ipnourable 
in their esteem. They have admired and resolved 
to follow a Master, who does not cast off his servants 
when their strength faileth, and who blesses them with 
strong consolation when others are left without sup- 
port. The evidence is too plain to be denied, too sol- * 
emn to be ridiculed. Such a death has also often 

ft 1 • * 

been profitable to those who were already in the way 
to Zion, but walking with trembling steps, and often 
fearing how it would go with them at laft ; whea 
they have seen the grace of CJod, they have been glad, 
their ardour has been kindled, their courage has been 
renewed j they have said, " Why may it not be so with 
** me ? The Lord is my helper, I will not fear." 
When Dodor Rivet was labouring, under the disease 

^9$ Hafpiness in Death. |]Sjs&« 

^gor^ch ended ia Ms dissolutioii, he said^ ^* Let all who 
^^ come to enquire after ^e, be aSowed to see me. f 
f< ought to be an example of religion, dyVig as well as 
f^ living ; and Chrift fiuU be magnified in my body, 
?^ whether it be by Ufe or by death." " lict me die 
1** the death of the righteous, and let myJ^ end be 
^' lUce his/' But in ord^ to this it will be necessary 
for us, 


|IL To examine the condition upon ^^hich thik 
pi^ilege is suspended, and which is obviously here 
implied ; ^ For so an entrance shall be minifteredi 
^ ointo you stbundantly, ijito the ^yerlafting kingdom 
' •• of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Ghrift." There are 
tw;o things lyehich it will b^ proper for us briefly to pre- 
mise. Firft, There are cases in which Chriftians may 
be affected all 'jchrough life by bo<fily causes, having 
:something morbid and atrabilarious in their conftitu- 
tion, which 9ubje6h them to varijous changes and de- 
pressions with which religion has no concern. Ther^ 
is no ^reasoning from these infiances* Secondly, I^ 
is not for us to deteAnine n^rhat God may do in par-, 
ticular xrases ; for he does not always deal with faig 
peoi^e lurcording to their desert; he is slow to anger 
and ready to forgive. Nevertheless he hsfs given us a 
rule by which we are to walk ; and has wisely eftab- 
£ihed a connexion between duty and privilege. An4 
I am persuaded that there is not an individual in this 
assembly, who would not rationally and scripturally 
exped to find one course of life attended with a more 
favoured and happy death than another; nor can 
t|^re be Quich dispute in determining the nature of' 

this ocNurse } this being oae of those cases in whichs 
men are very nearly agreed. It wovld b^ well ill 
tlieir knowledge and their praAice equally h4nnon&» 
zed ; but, alas ! what igiioi^ce and infidelity cannot: 
make us deny, sin and tti^e world can make us nc^le A L 
tl^s course requires, that you should habituate yousw 
selves to familiar thoughts of Death. This will disst*- 
pate the terrors which arise frofn diftance and imag- 
ination ; this will Break the force of surprise ; tUsf- 
will turn a\frightful precipice into a gentle slope. He 
who can ssy, << I die daily,'' is the moft likely to die' 
<jDinfortably.. It requires, tha^ you ihould looseii^ 
your a&^pns froih the world* A gentle breeze, a* 
slight effort will .brmg down the tree around which, 
you have dug, and whose larger roots yon have cut 
off. And thele^ powerfully you are attached to earth- 1 
ly things, the more easy will be your sepuration itomt 
them* . This is the man to die,, whose mind ^vances^' 
with his time ; who feels himsdf a Cbraager and a pit**, 
grim upon earth ; whose treasure is in heaven ; and* 
wibo views dying as only going home* It requires, that 
you Ihould obtain and preserve *the evidences of par-i 
don ; vdthout cannot be fearless and traaqoil 
in the near views of eternity, since *^ aftqjT death is;the^ 
^judgment." It requires you to keep a conscience 
ycHd of offence towards <xod and towards, man* Is . 
1^ in a condition to die, whp has lived in the prac- 
tice of some known fin, and in the omission of « some- 
known duty ? Is he in a condition to die, who has- 
worn a mask of hypocrisy, which will now drop off^- 
and expose him in his true charaaer ? Js he in a con- 
dition tadie^ who by arti%e, unfair dealing, grinding^ 

4fMi Happitiesx in DeatB. [Sck. xx^ 

» • • • * - 

the fates of tUe p%>or, has amassed gain which wiO'dis^^^ 
ilonour him if- festered, arid damn him if retain* 
ed ? It requires lis to liV'e in the exercise of brotherly 
kindness and charity* Of all we do for Him, noth- 
ing pleases him more than this, thU we know he 
wiU acknowledge in the day df judgement, and why 
not in the day of death ? ^< Kessed is he that consider- 
•^ eth the podt : the Lord will deliver him in time of 
*^ tr6iri>le." *^ The Lord will strengthen him upon 
f* the bed of languishing : thou wilt make all his bed 
^^-inhii sickness^'' Many are praying for him; the 
widows and the fatherless cry, and their cry entereth 
*^ the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth/' It requires an 
attentk)n to retigion in your families. I pity that fa- 
ther, Mdio will be surrounded when he dies with cbtl. 
dren, whose minds he never informed, whose dispo^ 
akions he never curbed, whose manners he nlever 
guarded } who sees one an infidel, another a profligate, 
and adl irreligious* I know that you are not answer- 
Ab:£or the conversion of your o£&pring, but you are 
responsible for the use of all proper means; and if 
these have beea negle6ted, you will plant your dying, 
pillow with thorns ; whereas if you have ^riously and 
perseveringly Attended to them, your dying repose shall 
not be disturbed by want < of success ; but you shall be 
able to say, ^^ Although my house be not so with God, 
^^ yet hath he made with me an everlasting covenant, 
^< ordered in all things and sure ; for this is all my 
<^ salvation and all my desire^ although he make it not 
" to grow." 

In a word, it requires you to live in the strenuous 
cultivation- ^f practical and progressive religion^ 







'^ And. besides tfais^ giving all difigence^ add to your 
^^ £dtb, virtde ; and to Tirtue^ knowledge $ atnd tb 
\auaw\e6gSy temperance ^ and to temfrerance, pa^ 
tience ; and . to patience, godliness ; and to godli- 
^fnesa, brotherly kindness i and t^ brotherly Idnd- 
^f nes^y charky. For if tli^ese things be in f ou^ aad 
*^ abouvdy tbey make you that ye shall neither be 
barren nor unfri4tful in the knowledge .cf oar Lord 
J^sus Christ* Bat he that ladceth these thbgi is 
blind, and cannot se^; iar off, and hath fgrgptten 
that he was purged from his old sins« Whef efof e 
^' the rather, brethi^en, give diligence t0 ifiake your 
^^ calling and eleAion sure j ibr if ye dp these thingii 
^f ye shall never fiill : for so, an entrance shall be i^in- 
^* isteted unto you abundantly, into the everlasting 
^^ kingdom of oiir Lord and Saviour Jesus Chnst/' 

My Brethren, If there be such dtfiSerenCes among 
Christians in dying, we n^y be ass wed. that theitt wi^ 
t^ iiiequalities in heaven. If there be sudb diversities 
in the order of their admission, ^ho can suppose they 
^lU all be upoii a level as soon as they have entered t 
There are various ranks and degrees ^motig our feU 
low^eryafiits and elder brethren,- thrones and domin- 
ions, . principalities and powers, 'the works of God 
qn earth and in the visible heavens ar^e distinguishcfd 
hijf a pleasing variety { ^^ All flesh is not the same 
^\ fl.esh : biit there is one kind of flesh of men, anoth- 
^\ er flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of 
^^ birds. There are also celestial bodies and bodies 
^^terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, 
*^ and the glory of the terrestrial is another* There is 

^^on^ gjory of the sun. and another glory of the 

C c c 

409 ' Happiness in DeatBi |^br. 

^ mooQ^ and another glory of the stars ; for one star 
^ di£Fereth from another star in glory. ^So also is the' 
<< resurrection of the dead." Let us therefore look to 
*^ ourselves that we receive a fiiU reward." 

• It is ioipossiUe to close without asking you in the 
presence of God^ Whiit pfepaf ation have you ihade 
fyr a' dying hour? Surely you do not exped' to live 
here always'^ you know that yoii must die ; and if 
ever yom* think of it, you cannot help wishing tb'die 
in peatei But aai you hope to' conclude in comfort, 
a life passed iii guilt ? ^^ Be not deceived ; God is not 
^ mocked : for whatsoever a man soWeth, that shall' 
^' he also reap. For he th&t soweth to his flesh, shair 
^ of the flesh reap corruption : but he that soweth to 
^ the Spirit, shkll of the Spirit reap- life' everlasting.'^ 
You are not' ih a* state to die even safely. You 
have only heard what you^ hswe to losei To you no 
entrance wffl be administered. 

But I address myself to Christians ; and csdl upoii' 
you to- think much of a- dying hour. . Tht care of dy- 
ing well^ will influence you to live so. Vsdiie things' 
according to the views you will have of them, when* 
you look back from the borders of the grave. You* 
see the blessedness we speak of does not depend upon* 
genius, learning, earthly riches, worldly distinctions. 
But some things have a favourable influence over t 
dying hour ; value, seled, pursue these. By such a 
death, regulate your plans of living. Be piously am- 
bitious; seek after spiritual prosperity; be rich in 
faith; be filled with the fruits of righteousness;, 
give all diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the 
eiid. Happy is the man who is no longer.^' in bon^ 


6ER. xx.J Jlafphfsi in Death. . 40S 

^ dage through fear of death ;'* who can think with 
composure of ^^the house appointed for all living t^'^ 
who can spend an hour ambng the tombs^ and say, 
^ Well, hither I have no reludance to come when my 
^<. heavenly Father sends the summons* I know in 
^ whom I have believed; and am persuaded that He 
^' is able to keep that which I have committed to him 
^against that day." "O Death! where Is thy 
.«« sting ? O Grave ! where is thy vidory ? The sting 
^' of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law; 
^' but thanks be to God, who giyeth us the vi62:ory 
*^ through o^r Lord Jesus Christ^'* 



4rid it came to pasji in the seven and twentieth year^ iif tbi^ 
first months in the first day of the months the word tf 
the Lord cam unto me^ sayings Son of w^n^ Nebucbad^i 

. rezzar king of Babylon caused his army to serve a great 
service against Tyrus : every hecid was made baldp and 
every shoulder was peeled ; yet bad he no wages j nor bis 
army for Tyrus j for the service that he had served agmost 
it : therefore thus saith the Lard Gody behold^ I will give 
the Land of Egypt unto Nebuchadrexzar king of Babylon ; 
and he shall take her multitude^ and take h^r spoil j and 
take her prey ; afid it shall be the wages for his army* 
/ have given him the Land of Egypt for his labour where* 
with he served against it^ because they wrought for me, 

• saith the Lord Cod* 

'' SURELY the Lord wiH do nothing, 
"but he rei^aleth his secret pnto his servants th<( 
'* prophets/' When he would bring in the flood up- 
on the ungodly world, he divulged his purpose to 

$$%. 3txt.|] Service duie ^t ^ 40S 

Koih. From AbrsAam he would not hide the thing 
he was about to do in the destrustion of the otieB of 
the plain. When by his judgments he resolved to 
punish the house of ]pi, he lodged the heavy tidings 
with Samuel. To Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, he 
announced thfe revolutions and doom of the surround- 
ing nations. 


Now this was done, first for the honour qf these 

..... ' » • 

distinguished servants of Ood, by {hewing the confix 
flential friendship with which he favoured them ; and 
secondly,* for the ponviction and confirmation of oth- 
ers. The truth of these predictions would increasing. 
ly appeal in their successive accomplishments. The 
Inference was obvious and undeniable. Who could 
draw ba£k the veil which conceals futujjty ? Who 
could pierce through the obscurity qf ages and gener- 
ationd, and foretell things to come ? He, and He 
9lone, ^^ who dedareth the end from the beginning, 
'' and from ancient times the things that ^re not yet 
^' done; saying. My counsel shall stand, and I will do 
" all my pleasure." 

The burden of the prophecy which is to engs^s 
your present thoughts, }s the donation of Egypt tq 
the king of Babylon for his trouble in taking Tyre. 

Tyre was a place famous for navigation, merchan- 
dis;e, and riches. Our prophet calls it, ^^ The mart o£ 
<< nations,'' and enumerates the vano\u countries in 
whose commerce \t traded* But trade is perpetually 
(hanging its residence. It passed from Tyre to At 
exandria^, itoxfy Alex^ Y^^ice* from Venice to 
Antwerp, from Antwerp to Amflerdam, from Am* 
llerd^m to Londbn. And if there be any truth in 

lufibry, an* abundance of commerce has generally, if 
.^ot universally, proved the ruin of the countries i^ 
«which it has prevadled. It pours in wealth ; wealth 
is favourable to every species of wickedness; an4 
wickedness, by its natural tendency, as weU as by the 
curse of God, .brings in qdamity and misery. So i|L 
W2ls with Tyre. Luxury, pride, insolence, licentious* 
Xiess ,of manners, ^difference to the diftresses of oth- 
ers, pres\tmptuou3 confidence in their resources, all 
jthese abounded among them .and foreboded the evil 
day ; *' Therefore thjus said the Lord God : ^ehold 
^^ I am againft thee, O Tyrus, and will caijise manv 
^ nations te pome up againft thee, as the jsea caus.etl|. 
f* his wavc^ to come up. For behold, J will biing 
upon Tyrus, Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, a 
king of kings, from the north, with horses and witli 
5< chariots, and with horsemen, and companies, and 
*^ much peojde. ]Se fliall slay with the sword thy 
daughters in the field : and he (haU make a fort 
againft thee, and caft a mount againft thee, and lift 
^' up the buckler againft thee. And he fhall set en- 
^< gines of war againft thy walls, and with his axes he 
^< fhall break down thy towers. And I will make 
'< thee fike the top of a rock ; thou fhalt b$ a place te 
^^ spread nets upon ; I the Lord have spoken it.'* 

• This prediftion was no^v accomplifhed. Tyre had. 
fallen, but not without immense labour and loss.-— 
Thirteen years Nebuchadrezzar besieged it with a 
krge army. Toiling for so many seasons, night and 
day, summer and winter, the soldiers endured incred>» 
|ble hardfhips ; ^ every head was bald ; every fhoid« 
ff der was pealed.** For the walls were deemed inw 


pregnabky and thepUce being open to the siea coukS 
easily receive freih smpplies of provision and of nieii 
horn the various colonies which they had in the Med« 
iterranean. But its fate was determined. At length 
a breach was made; and further res{ilance became 
useless; But nuYnbers of the Tynans escaped in their 
vessels, after taking their most valuable articles oxt 
board, and throwing the rest into the sea ; so that 
Nebuchadrezsfiu" wh^n he entered, infiead of a rich 
booty to indemnify him for hfs losses, fouiid nothings 
but empty houses and rbins^ This w2Ls no smaU mor- 
tification. Ezekiel: is therefore cotamissiohed to in- 


sure him the acqubition of a country, where he would 

find less difficulty and ihore recompense ; a country 

iboundihg in* corn, in cattle, and all kinds of riches. 

*^ And it came to pass in the seven ahd twentieth 

•* year, in the first month, in tK^ firfl day of the 

* month, the word of the Lord came imto ihe, saying 

^ Son of man, Nebuchadrezt&ar king of Bkbylon 

^^ caused his army to serve a' great service against Ty« 

•* rus : every head was made bald; and every shoul- 

^ der was peeled : yet had he no wages, nor his ar-^ 

•* ray, for Tyrus, for the service that he had served 

•* against it : therefore thus saith the I-ord God, 
•^Behold, I will give the Land of Egypt unto N«bu- 

*^ chadrezzar king of Babylon ; and he shall take her 

•• multitude, and take her spoil*, and take her prey j 

*• and it shall be the wages for his army. I have giv- 

•* en him the Land of Egypt for his labour wherewith 

^ he served against it, because they wrought for me>' 

•^ saith the Lord God." 

These words fiiraish us with three rei 


!:-•« i.t 

4bB Stnktdmefvr [|KS£m« kxLm 


L Tke (fi^osal of ibtes and Nations id the work tJi 
divine Pisovidwce. IL Men may serve Ood really:^ 
\tfbi^ they do not serve him by design. III. We shall 
Jiev ef be losefs by any thing we do for God. 

I Thb dispoi^Al of states akd nations 1$ 
THE WORK of divine Providence* This Dan* 
iel confessed when he sadd, '* Blessed be the name df 
^ God for ever and ever : for wisdom and might are 
<^ his : and he changetfa the times and the seasons : 
<^ he removeth kings, and he setteth up kings : hd 
^ givetli wisdom to the wise, and knowledge to them 
*^ that know understanding." He j'ejected Saul, and 
gave the Kingdom to David an obscure Ihepherd. He 
took the ten tribes frbm Rehoboam, and transferred 
them to Jeroboam originally an inferior officer in his 
own service. It was occasioned indeed by the impru- 
dence of the king in refdising the advice of the old 
inen, and following, the rash counsel of the young ; 
but ** the thing,** so it is expressly remariced, " the 
^ thing was of the Lord.** Thus He takes Egypt 
from Pharaoh-hophra, and adds it to* the possessions 
and territories of the Babylonish monarch. Nothing 
could be a greater judgment upon; a country than to 
be laid open to the horrors of invasion^ and delivered 
up to the despotism of an unprincipled tyrant, who 
considered them as his property, used them as his* 
tools, degraded them as his vassals, disposed' of them 
as his vidims ; so that ^^ whom he would he slew, and 
^' whom he would he kept aUve ;^' but ^ the. Lord 
** gave it to him.** 

. Do we examine this dispeasation in reference to the 

Ser. xxi.] God Rewarded. 40§ 

authority of God? It is unquestionabl]^ his pefoga- 

tive ; he has a right to do what he will with his own. 

<^ r have made the earth, the man and the beast that 

** are upon the ground, by «iy great power and by 

^' my out-stretched arm, and have given it unto whom 
". it seemeth meet unto me." 

Do we consider it in conned:ion with the divine 
power? Nothing is too hard for the Lord} no dif- 
ficulties lie in his way ; he moves, and vallies rbe and 
mountains become a plain ; ^' all nations before him 
^^ are as nothing, and are counted to. him less than 
** nothing and vanity.^' " When he giveth quietness^ 
^^ then who can make trouble? and when he hideth 
*^ his face, tten who can behold him ? whether it be 
** done against a nation or against a man only*" 

Do we survey the relation it has to the righteous- 
ness of God ? He is the moral governor of the uni- 
verse, ** who renders to every man according to their 
"works." Individuals can be rewarded or punished 
in another world ; but communities are judged only 
in this. Here he deals with them ip a way of retri- 
• biition, and in none of his proceedings is he arbitra- 
ry ; there is always a cause. " Righteousness exalteth 
a nation, and sin is a reproach to any people." 
O house of Israel, cannot 1 do with you as this pot- 
ter ? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the 
*' potter's hand, so are ye in my hand, O house of 
" Israel. . At what instant I shall speak concerning a 
nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and 
to pull down, and to destroy it; if that nation 
* against whom I have pronounced, turn from 

** THEIR EVIL, I will repent of the evil that I thought 

D D d 




4tO Ser^ce done for [[SifR« xitti 

^< to do unto theta. And at what instant I diall speak^ 
' <^ concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to 
•* build and to plant it ; if it do evil in my sight, 
" that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the ' 
** good wherewith I said I would benefit them/* 

Do' we think of it in appfication to our own times \ 
We should remember that it ha^ nothing in it pecu- 
fiar of uncommon ; that persons in former ages are 
to be viewed a4 fair specimens of human nature in gen- 
eral, and the dealings of divine Providence with them 
as holding forth the unchangeable' ilature 'and perfec* 
tlons of Gq^ ; tHat " he is the* governor among the 
"nations** no^, as much' as in the days of Ezekiel; 
arid that were a histofy of modern extents to be writ- 
ten by inspiration, we should find him ** Working all- 
^ things after the counsel of His own will,** and read- 
it recorded, that " Ott of him came forth the comer, 
** out of him the nail, out of him the battte bow, out- 
** of him every oppressor together.** 

And my brethren, this is precisely the view D^e 
should endeavour to take of these changes. A Chris- 
tian should be wiser than other men, and where they 
can only find instruments, he should* recognise a di- 
vine agency ; where they only see a creature, he should^ 
acknowledge a God, •* of whom, and through whom» 
" and to whom are all thinge." When we view thiS' 
sovereign Cause of all events, the face of the universe 
is changed ; the earth instantly becomes a place of 
equity and order : the history of the world is the his* 
tory of Gody ai\d is worth reading. Unless we fix- 
upon this principle, we shall be in danger of debasing 
ourselves by joining in worldly parties and political! 

^iti. XXI.] God Rewards^. 4M 

Tagc i of fedkig too much confidence in one dass of 
' aien, and too much fear of another ; of prescribing 
the course of events, and suffering disappointpient and 
rjaoortification when our favorite .measures are subvert- 
ed. We have seen how strangely unanswerable to 
any human expectation various occurrences have 
proved ; how little comparatively there is in the van- 
. ous modifiqitjons of civil policy deserving the anxiety 
of a Christian ; how mnch under all forms of govem- 
'ment the passions Qf men remain the same. A high- 
er remedy is necessary, and it is to be found in the 
vGospel only ; and by their favourable bearings on the 
rdifiusion.df this Messing, it becomes us principally to 
estimate all .puUic revolutioQfi. This is the end God 
has ultimately in vieW) sind he is ^ble to accomplish it. 
'He is ^^ wonderful .in coiinsel, and Q;^cellent in wor^c- 
*^< ing.*' He is doing all things, and he is ^^ doing aU 
'^^ things well/' Let us not make our ignorance the 
.Standard of his perfection. He will deduce order 
from confusion, and good from evil. «<He stilleth 
«* the raging of the sea, and the tumult of the people." 
«** The Lord jeigneth, let the earth rejoice, let the 
** multitude of the isles be glad thereof" Surely, 
O Lord, the wrath *' of man shall praise thee, the re- 
'^ mainder of wrath shalt thou Te3train." \7hich leads 
•us to observe, 

IL That men may <s£rv£ God HBAiiLV, when 
TH£T do not serve HIM BY DESIGN. Nebuchad- 
rezzar and his army, says God, "wrought for me.** 
*^ O Assyrian, the rod of mine anger, and the staff in 
^^ their hand is mine indignation. I will send him 


*Sirvice donejhr 

[S^R* XJCX.. 


^< ag^nst an hypocritical nation, and against the 
^^ pie of my wrath will I give him a charge to take tbES 
*' spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down 
^^ like the mire of the streets. Howbeit he means T£C 
^•\ not so, neither doth his heart think so ; but it is in 
^^ his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a fewJ^ 
The men obeyed their commander^s y their command* 
ers obeyed Nebuchadrezzar ; Nebuchadrezzar obey* 
ed his pride, ambition, avarice, cenrenge y .and his pride^ 
ambition, avarice, and revenge obeyed the will of 
Heaven. He knew nothing of God ; but God knew 
him, and ^^ girded and guided him.'' He had 
one end in view, and God another y but ii) taking a 
wicked city, he was fulfilling the word of truth, and 
infliding the judgments ojF heaven ; therefore says 
God, " he wrought for me/' And what do. we leara 
from hence, but that great men, bad men^^ the worst 
of men, while pursuing their enterprises, are subjeft 
to a divine controul ; ^re impelled in a prescrifated di- 
reAion ; are direded to a destined mark I What a 
strange scene was here ; the king of Babyk>n and his 
hosts arming at the divine caU, and marching forth to 
subdue countries, to plunder provinces, to demolish 
cities, and in all this doing Qod service! But God 
can turn things from their natural tendency into op. 
posite channels ; he can make men aft necessarily, 
while they are afting voluntarily ; he can bind them 
while they feel not their chains, but even boast of 
their liberty. He has many designs to accomplish, 
and he suits his instruments to their work. Some of 
his purposes are dreadful, and he can make execution- 
ers of those who are unqualified to M'ait in his royal 

Ser. XXI.3 G<?rf Rewarded 41 S 


presence. Soctie of them are preparatory ; s^nd he 
may use in removing the rubbish, those who' could 
not be employed in the erection of the fair 

And thus Nebuchadrezzar is called the servant of 
God, as weU as the apostle Paul ; but observe the dif- 
ference between them, and as God will derive glory 
from all his creatures, inquire which of these charac- 
ters you are resembling. The former serves God on- 
ly^ from the influence of an overruling Providence ; ^ 
the latter from the operation'Xtf . divine Grace. " Be- 
hold he prayeth j*' his language is, ' ** Lord, what 
wilt thou hjve me to do ?" He catches the spirit of 
his Master ; enters cheerfully into all his views ; doth 
his will ** from the heart.** And so it is with all his 
sincere followers. Whatever they once w^re, they 
are made willing in the day of his power ; their minds 
are enlightened, their dispositions are i*enewed ; they 
glorify him from conviction and principle ; it is their 
aim ; the delight of their souls, and the business of 
their lives. " O Lord, other Lords beside thee liav^ 
had dominion over us ; henceforth 1>y thee only- 
will we make mention of tl^y name. Speak, Lord, 
for thy servant heareth. I hold myself at thy dispo- 
^* sal ; prescribe the laws which are to govern nie : 
** choose my inheritance for me/* 

Such is their language ; and never wilt they have ^ 
''cause to repent of their engagements. They have 
chosen that good part which shall not be taken from 
them : in life and in death j in time and in eternity, 
they will have reason to say, " Thou l^ast. dealt^ well 
<* with ihy servant, O Lord/' For, 

^14 ^fvkes (km for [Ssiu 


THET DO FOR Gqi>. Io One Way or another he wift 

surely recompeoBe them. Even secances done Bdt 

him by worldly men obtain a temporal reward The 

Egyptian females, though strsingers to the common- 

wealth of Isi;^) ^^ feared God^ and did not as the king 

^^commapded them, but saved the mea-chfldrej|i 

*^ alive ; therefore God de^t well with them, and he 

^* made them houses/' J^hu was a vain ostentatioii^y 
' wiclj^ed prince, ^^ apd departed not from the sins of Je- 

^< roboam the sons of Nebat, who made Israel to sin ;** 
but ^^the l.prd said unto lehu, Beq^ise thou hast 
done well in ,executing that which Is right in mine 
eyes, and has done unto the house of Ahab accord* 
ing to ^ that was i|i mine heart, thy children of 
"^^ the fourth gener^tipn shall sit upon <the throne of 
^ Israel.'' So here ^* I ha^ given Nebuchadrezzar 
the land of Egypt for hi? labor wherewith he serv- 
ed against it ; beqmse they wro\i|ght for me^ saith 
^^ the Lord God/' This ^ indeed a poor recom- 
pense. It may appeiu* splendid and important in this 
leye of the -yain and the sensual, but the righteous are 
fyx from envying jit. They dread to be excluded 
ifrom future hope by the sentence ^^they giavb their 
'^* reward.** They are more afraid of the destiny thaa 
;of the malice of the wicked, and therefore pray ^ jde- 
liver my soul from the wicked wiuch is thy sword j 
from men of t^ie world, who have their portion, ia 
" this life, and whose belly thou fillest with thy hid 
" treasure : they ?ire full of children, and leave the 
f' rest of their substance to their babes. As for me, I 
^ will behold * thy face i^ righteousness ; I sh^ 


Siiiu rzi.] 

God Rewarded. 


^^ be satisfiftd when I awake with thy fikenen/' Kgypt 
was aH the remuneration of Nebuchadrezzar^ and what 
<iould it do for him ? What is it to Hfan now ? 

Ye servants of thfe moft high Ckkf, who know him" 
and love him^ he has pix)vided some bettei' thing fot 
yoa. You may argue from. the less to the greater. 
Does he rettrard heathens^ and Will he abandon Chris- 
tians ? Does he observe slaves, and disregard sons whO' 
serve him ? Does he honor inftruments, and pass by , 
those who ftrive to please and glorify him ? ** Fear 
** lidt, little flodc, for it is your Father's good pleasure 
** to GIVE YOU THE KINGDOM.'* He who uotlced 
the hardships endured by the poor soldiers before Tyre- 
when every head was bald, and every ihoulder peel- 
ed, will not suffer you to labour in vain ; he sees 
your difficulties; considers the burdens under which 
you bend J he hears your groans, ahd your sighs, 
when without are fightings, and within atle fears. 
They who speak often one to another, and they who 
tMnk only upon his name, are recorded in the book 
of his remembrance. " God is not unrighteous to 
" forget your work of faith and labor of love.** He 
applauded the widow's mite. He said of Mary, ** She 
** hath done what she could.?' , " He that receiveth 
a prophet in the name of a prophet, shall receive a 
prophet's reward : and he that receiveth a righteous* 
^* man in the name of a righteous man, shall receive 
** a righteous man's reward. And whosoever shall 
" give to drink unto one of these little ones a 
" cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, 
^ verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose 
" reward." 



416 Stn/kf d<nie .ffr [&Kf» xxi^ 

ChmtiaoSy let aU' thb; animate you to vigorous aild 
increasing exertion. It is condescension and kindnestf 
in God to employ you. He needs you not ; he does 
it to improve you, to honor you, to enable you to 
procure what you can never deserve ; to give your 
happiness the nature of a reward. Do you not long 
to be employed by him ? Is it nothing to be workers 
together with iGrod ? Is it a vain thing to serve the 
Lofd ? '^ Godliness is profitable unto all things, hav- 
^^ ing promise of the life that notv is, and of that which 
^^ is to ' come/' *' There is no man that hath left 
^^ house or parents, or brethren or wife, or children^ 
*^ for the kingdom of God's sake, who shall not re- 
^\ ceive manifold more in this present time^ and in the 
" world to come life everlasting.** Be ye strong 
'^ therefore ; and let not your hands be weak, for your 
" work shall be rewarded.** 

Do you ask, how can we. work for him ? In pulUng 
down the strong holds of sin ; in diffusing truth ; in 
suppordng the gospel ; in maintaining the worship of 
God} in feeding the hungry; in teaching the igno- 
rant; in reclaiming the vitious; for ^^it is not the 
** will of your Father, who is in heaven, that one of 
^* these. little ones should perish.** 

. Do you ask, and what will be our reward ? You 
will find it in the very nature of your work ; you will 
find it in the glow of pleasure which attends virtuous 
exertion ; you will find it in the approving testimony 
of your own conscience ; you will find it in the iss- 
teem of the wise and good ; you will find it in the 
blessing of them that were ready to perish ; you will 
find it in the applause of your Lord and Saviour ; 

JJer. xki.3 God Reivarded. ilY 

** WeH done, good and faitliful servant, thou hast "->/ 
*^ been faithful over a few things, I will make thee 
^ ruler over many things ; enter thou into the joy o£ 
^ thy Lord:'* 

What! some are ready to exclaini, what, are you 
[^reaching up the doftrine of merit! God forbid# 
Merit ! when both our disposition and our ability to 
Serve Him come from his Grace. Merit ! when there 
is no projportion between the reward and the work. 
Merit! when after we have <Johe all, >^e are unprofit- 
al^Ie servants, and have dbhe no more than was our 
duty to do. Merit ! when in many things we all of- 
fend, and deserve condemnation for our defers rather 
than recompense for our doings. IVferit! when all 
who ever served God aright have exclaimed, "Not 
** unto us, O Lord, not iinto us, but unto thy liame 
"give we glory, for thy mercy and for thy truth's 
** sake ; by the grace of God 1 am wtiat I am ; I la- , 
** boured, yet not I, but the .grace of God which waa 
" with nie.'* JBiut let us not under a senseless clam- 
our be afraid to do justice to the language of Scrip- 
ture ; to bring forward motives which we find stated 
by, infinite wisdom ; to display the munificence of 
God, tlie folly of those wto refuse his yoke, the wis- 
dom of those who serve him ; " Wherefore, my be- 
^^ loved Brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always 
" abounding in the Work of the Lord, forasmuch 
"as. ye know your labour is not in vain in the 
^« Lord.^' 

itinally. Let ua think of the Saviour. IMd God 

remunerate a despicable tyfant for his labour and 

hardships, though they were not personal, and for fiiU 

E s • 


^18 SiTpk^dmfi^ ^Buu 

fiffiqg' HiK purpCNWf ^^bfi^ it jms topt imcuticxnil f 
<< Behold hia Servant wboqi be upholds, bis £led in 
Vwhom biff soul del]|^teth.'' TbU was je:(pr«ssty 
his motive: '*Lo! I come to do thy wiU^. ,0 God ; 
" thjr law is within my heart." He trod " the wioe- 
^ press dbnej atid di the pieople there was none with 
^ him/*^ Behold Him poor, not hafving where to lay. 
&is head; despised and rejeAed of men; exceeding 
$orrowlnL What a life of suffering I What a death 
0f anguish! What does God think of aU this? ^^He 
^^was obedient unto death, even the death of the 
^ cross; whereforb God also hath highly exalted 
^ him, atid given him a name which is s^ve every 
^ name i timt at the name of Jesus every knee should 
^ bpw, of things in heaven^ and things in earth, 
^ and^things under the earth ; and that every tongue 
^ should confess tha;t Jesus Christ is Lord, to the g^o- 
«« ry of God the Father.*' • " He shall see hb seed, 
^ he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the 
^ Lord shall prosper in his hands. He shall see of 
*< the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied* 
^ THERfiFORE will I divide him a portion with the 
^< great, and he shall divide the spo3 with the strong ; 
** BECAUSE he hath poured out his souf unto death : 
^and he was numbered with the transgressors; and 
^^ he bare the sins of many, and made intercession for 
^^ the transgressors. Ask of me, and I shall give thee 
^' the heathen for thine inheritance, and the utter- 
^ most parts of the earth ^or thy possession. Hb 
*^ name shall endure for ever ; his name shall be con- 
^ tinned as long as the sun : and men shall be blessed 
^<~in him; all nations shall call him blessed* Blessed 

SxA. xxl] 



^< be Ike Lord God of Israel, mbo€mlf doetk wonder- 
^ fill things^ And Uessed be his glorious name for 
^ ever ; and let the whole esotb be filled with his glorjr. 
^< Jbnen ^d AxaesL*^ 



♦ ■ 

» « 




Job. ^ix. 18. 


XF W^ ejcamine the world in which we liy^, wft 
shall every where discover variety, changeableness, 
and succession. Here plains rise into moij^tains, and 
there hills sink into valUes* We see well-watered 
meadows, and df y and barren sands. We rejoice in 
the light, but wq are soon enveloped in daikness. We 
hail the loveliness of spripg, and wdcome the ap- 
ppach of svmmer i but the agreeable months soon 
r^ away, and the north pours down the desolations 
of "(printer. Equally chequered sind variable is human 
fife. Our bodies, our relations, our conditions and 
circumstances are perpetually changing. But this 
diversity constitutes the beauty and the glory of Prov- 
idence. It displays the divine perfections, by render- 
ing the interposition necessary a^nd obvious. It fur- 
nishes means, by which the dispontions of men are 
tried, and their characters formed. It lays hold of 
(heir hope and fear, joy and sorrow j and exercises 

' Ifence Drvine {Vdvidence is always desen^ing of our 
attention. Providence — is, God in niotion. Provi- 
dence—is God teaching by facts. Providence — i^ 
God fulfiiUngy explaining, enforcing his own word. 
Providence — ^is Ood Irendenng natural events subser- 
vient to spiritual puirposes ; rousing 'our attention 
when we are careless ; reminding us of our obliga- 
tions when we are ungrateful; recalling our confi- 
dence when we depart fr6m hii!n by dependence upon 

• • • • 

creatures. "Whoso is wise,- and will observe these 
^^ things, even they shall understand the loving-kind- 
« ness of the Ixird.'^ ^ . ' 

The words which I have read give us an opportuni- 
ty to pursue and improve these reflections. / Wheni 
Job uttered them ** he had seven sons and three daugh- 
** ters. His substance also was seven thousand sheep, 
" and three thousand cammels, and five hundred yoke 
«€ ef oxen, and five hundred she-asses, and a very great 
" household ; so that this man was the greatest of all 
" the men of the east.** Hear his own language : 
<< I washed my steps with batter, and the rock pour- 
" ed me out rivers of oil. 'When I went out to the 
" gate through the city, when I preparied my seat in 
" the street, the young mensaw nie and hid them- 
selves : and the aged arose apd stood up. The 
princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on 
" their mouth. The nobles held their peace, and 
*' their tongue cleaved to the rttof 5f their mouth.** 
He had something better than all thfe. "When tie' 
^ ear heard me, then it blessed me ; and when the 

«» DiMMpfimmmf^ L^ tftnu wk^ 

^ Cf^e^nnr 1W9 lit gne wmns to ne; bacaose I iMM» 
**€red the poor tiut cried j and the fiitfaerl^y and 
«« hka th^ had none ta help hm The kleMiig cf 
^^ lUm that xvasre^ t^ perUh CMie upon mcf ; and 
^ I caused the widow's heart to sing for jor^ I put oa 
^ righteojiiaiiesa, ^md it dothed me t my judgement wci 
^ as«a robe and a diadem. I was eyes to the" bKa^ 
M and feet waa I to the lame. I w» a father to thi^ 
^ poor : and the c^mse whkh I knew not I seardbed 
^ (Hit. And I brake the jaws of the wkked, attd 
f ^ pkicked the spoil our of his teethe Then I sadd^ I 
^ shall die ^n my nest Thek, when I fa^d swd^ 
^ wealthy power, authority, honor $ Thsn^ wheii 
all was jgreen ted flowery, when* my sky was cleat 
and no doud ^ppi^M^ ; Then, conduding on- the 
pormanenqr of my condition, jmagiping I was in no 
danger of vidssitude, and supposing I shpuld live 
ha^py and end my days in peace ; Thbn- I said ( 
♦« shall die in my niest.'' 

What does this passagie of scripture io^y and 63^^ 
press ? T^at views and feeEngs pf mind does it char* 

L In these words we. see something oood ; eveo^ 
ia his greatest prosperity. Job thought of dyiko j^ 
whatever changes he hoped to escape in life, he expec*; 
ted an hour of dissolution, and knew if his possessioqi 
were continued hesbouUl be called tp leave them. 

' Death is always an irksome consideration to the^ 
man of the wwld'who has his portion in this life, aii4 
possesses no hdt)e of a bett^. He thensfore strives ta 
Irnnish it from his thoughts* He puts fw off the evil 

dtf y aadliflrw i^yi he Aa^ered Umadf vitL^ inmDF'^ 
lilky upoa e^rth. But the befieva: keepB iip< a iamfl'' 
fir ^^uainuiiioe with it. . He doB$ not tibixdk of deAtl^ 
Mlf ''ffki^ trottUe-eoibitteis Kfe aaid fordiig hinir ts^say^ 
^VI loathe k,I wouki n^t five afairays,- ' lie reflects 
VfHKi it irheo the wodd 3l»ifos» a» wdl a& when if 
%>wtf94 "Qtrfaatever be hia present mrcnpwscance^^ he 
fools w4 QO|ife«B0ii h£ipse)f tQ be af stranger and % j&* 
gnn pa the earth • Ms hope ia alwisiys infiaitdy mpe» 
f i<H: ,to hb wjaym^pts } beyond the grave he has « 
hol^ sot itiade with himcb, at dty which hath 
ftiindatiaDS, ar better^ a heavenly <^Qtry; mote&u- 
l»efO&s« mote* ^adeatied conaectioBS. 'Riere liaa his 
iflh^rit^fife ; there dwells Im Father ; there is hia 
(eternal home^ Hence Wf have, seen even persons, pos*' 
l^sed of riches, honour, friends, health, and sniroiuul* 
«d with eyery thing desirable, ^^ willmg to depart to be 
** with Christ which is far better/' 

It must however be acknowledged, that &; is &r more 
^ xmXntAJX - this state of mind in pleasing and * 
pfospeprousi (C^rcuinstanges, than in trying and dtstressr 
ing scenes. It was a wise reflection of Charlef the 
Fifth to the Duke of Venice, when he shewed him 
the Treasury of St. M&rk, andthe.g^ovy of his prince- 
ly Palace, instead of admiring them, he.said, ^- These 
^^ai)e the things that make men. so loathe to die." 
When every thing is agreeaUe in oor condition^ we 
are in cknger <£ feding a disposition to settle, and of 
sayiog? "It b good for us to be here ^** npt, " Arise, 
^*;Iftt us go hence*" We think of. adorning, noc 
leavtftg ; of. puUu^ dowa our . barns and buildini^ 
greater, nxMI of contracting ^l' into the narrow Hpttf 

•«2i DisippuhimMi of Ufi, ^SbiU xlttf 

of the grave. But it would be wise to take often real-' 
ising views of death. It wotild come over us ais like ^ 
doud to cool our brainless ardours ; it would check 
the pride of life, ^hich so often carries Us away ; it 
would sanctify our possessions^, and keep our prosperi-r 
ty front destroying us } it would lead tis to use soberly 
and profitably those tsdents of which' so shortly we 
must give up our account ; it would excite us to se- 
cure those things in their uses and effects which we can- ' 
not retain in their substance, and urge us to be ^^ rich 
^ in good v^orks^ ready to distribute, willing to com- , 
^ municate ; laying up in store for ourselves a good 
^' foundation against the time to come ;" and to make^ 
ourselves *' friends of the mammon of unrighteousness, 
** that when we fail they may receive uis into everlast- 
ing habitations;" 

Accustom yourselvels therefore to reflection so use- 
ful, and learn to " die daily/' Say, while walking 
over your fields. The hour is coming when I shall fee- 
liold you no more ; when yoii go over your mansion, 
". If I wsut the grave is my house ;" ais you estimate' 
your property, " I cannot tell who shall gather it." • 
This apparel which I now lay aside and restime, I shall 
soon lay aside forever ; and this bed, in which I now ' 
enjoy the sleep of nature, will by and by feel me chill- 
ing it ^th the damps of death. *^ Lord, make me 
*' to know mine end and the measure of my days; ^ 
*^ what it is, that I may know how frail I am !'* And 
surely it re^^uires contrivance and difliculty to keep ' 
off reflection so reasonable and. salutary. Every thing 
IS forcing the consideration upon you ; 'every thing is 
saying, "The time is short ; it remains that they that 


S«R. xkiu'] Disappointments of Life. 45i 

** have wives be as thoixgh they had none j and they 
^ that weep as though they wept not ; and they that 
*• rejoice as though they rejoiced not j and they ^that 
^< buy as though they possessed not ; and they that 
^^ use this world as not abusing it : for the iashioa ol 
" this world passeth away/* I am the more diligent, 
says the apostle Peter, " knowing that I must shortly 
** put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus 
*' Christ hath shewed me.** And ha^ he not shewed 
you the ^ame, if not by immediate revelation, y^t \Mf 
tte language of Scripture, by the brevity of life, by 
the loss of coiinedions, by personal decays ? •'' Stand 
** with your loins gitded, and your, lamps buraiug/' 
*^ Man, that is born of i woman^ is of few d^ys and 
^^ full of trouble. He coiheth forth like a flotirer,^ and 
*^ is cut down : he fleeth also is a shadow, sttid con- 
** tinueth not." "The fathers, where are they? and 
** the prophets, do they live for ever ?" We enter thd 
city, and see man going to his Jong home, and tha 
nlourners going about the streets. We enter thef sane* 
tuary, and miss those with ttrhom we oiice took sti^eef 
counsel, ind went to the house of God in company ]t 
their places know them no more for even We enter* 
our own dwellings, and painful recollection i$ awak- 
ened by the seats they once filled, by the books they 
onCe read and have left folded down with their oWn 
hands ; we walk from room to room„ and sigh, ^^ Lov- 
^' er and friend hast thou put far from me, and mine 
** acquaintance into darkness." We examine our- 
selves, and find that our strength is not the strength of 
stones, nor ire our bones brass; we are crushed ber 

lore the moth ; at our best estate we are aitc^ethsr 

F F f 



4St6 t)isappoinimen{s of Life. [Seiu xivU 

vanity. And is it fcr such beings to Kve as if they' 
were never to die ! O Lord, ^^ so teach us to number 
*^ out days, that we may apply our' hearts unto ym^ 
•* dom.** 


m In these words Vft see something desirable* 
Who does not wish to hsrre his possessions and enjoy, 
ments continued f to wcxg^ piifti^ revolutions in' 
his drcumstances ? " to die in his nest ?" We tsdk 6f 
the benefit of aflidfiony but affli^on simply consider- 
ed is not eligible. We decry the passions, but we are * 
required' to regulate the passions rather than expel^ 
them. We appeal to Scripture, but the Scripture 
knows nothing of a religion founded upon the ruins of 
humanity, and unsuitable to the life that now b. He 
who made us knows our frarne^. and does not cx^d? 
tty to be indifferent to pain or ease, t^ sickness oc^ heakfa^ 
ifo indigence or competency, to exile or a^ place where 
to by our heads^ These temporal things are good/ 
xn^ themselves } tHey are needful; we have bodies as 
well as souls^ we iuive* connexions to fffovidjlf fiir 9s 
well as our own pet^sons* They are sometimes prom*^ 
ised. in . Smptujre* We find pious men praying for 
them^. and their prayers are recorded with honours. 
Our error in desiring them consists i» twd thbgs. 

First, &i desiring themF trxcOHDiTioKALLY. In 
playing for temf^nd blessings, we arii always to keep- ' 
a Msorva^upoa our wishes, including 'submission to the 
w4B^ God, and a irefet^iice to our real wel£ure. For ' 
vtt olten know not what to pray for as- we ought, and ' 
may be ihwe injured by the gtatSfication than by th^ 
rei^iisal of our desires. We know oucsdves vexj iob^ 

£sR. xxn.3 DffafpokitmentsofX'ife. 4^ 

perfecdy, and hence we cannot determine wliat infiu- 
ience untried ctfcumstances would have upon' our 
fninds. Placed in the same situations with others^ 
we may act the very part we now condemn. The 
.diaqges which may take place in our character may 
wrprise others 9*^ shock oursdves. ^Who know- 
^ eth what is good for nan in this life, aH the days o^ 
^* his vai9 life which lie spendeth as a shadow ?" Why 
Crod^ and Ood only. Refer therefore the decision 
to Him ^ it is your interest ab well as yo^ii-r duty to 
i^ve him to choose 2^ for you. ' ^ 

^ HU cboice is safer than your own, 

^ Of ages paat enquuv'— 
^<.«.What thp tiK)st fornaidable fate ? 
, *< To have your own desire.*** 

lisnce the prayer which Socrates taught hid pupH 
iUcihiades is not unworthy the use of a Christian ; 
^^ That be should beseech the Supreme Being to give 
^^ him what v^ good for him though h^ should not 
^* ask it^ and to withhold horn Mm whatever was in- 
^< junouf, of #y his folly he ^u]4 hie Jed to pray 

Secondly, When w^ ^desire diem isupftEiiELr* 

Fpr whateve!^ be their udMty, thf y are not to be i:om<» 

pared with jsiMskual blessings in heavenly phcts la * 

^Christ. Things are ^o be valued ^nd pursu^ ^coQird- 

trig to their in^rt^oa* 2(asiy things are mi^^\Mi 

<^ but one thin^ j^ neefl&U" O^ freodoai iii. vnhi^r 

hl9 ; . but tljip .glorioiK fibprty. i^i the mm Of God.U 

iiuich more pre^iouat It U . w^ £or t^e. bo^ X^bt 

in hpajkh ^ l^t it.^i^ nuch betjtj&r jfor : the sonJltf) iproih 

w ' • 

iS^ UfhafpoiiOmenii ^ L^. £Sfiiu xxu. 

per. 3ilver and gold are useful } but there are dur 
rable riches vrith right^9cn|SD696. It is pAeaong to c£ft 
in our nest ; l^ut it \g much more desinlUe to die eVea 
In a prison or upon a dttng-^hill, if we csm - sajr , with 
Simeon, ^* Lord, now Iett«t thou thy servant dig^art 
^' in pesice 2^coording to thy wort)^ f<^ mine eyes hav^ 
.^ seen thy ^vat^cHit- 

III. In these wor4s yi^ find . something yery 00% 
;^ON. I^ is afflui^nce and ease cherishing confidence 
and presumption. It is a supppdtion that we sha^ 
haye no changes because we £eel none. The cons^ 
quence is natural, and it b easily exphdned. Freient 
things most powerfully impress the mind. Take a 
man in trouble, and ny^th what di,fficul(y will you per- 
suade him to exped better days. The gloom of. his 
situation darkens his very soul, and the burden of his 
affli<6tipti presses and keeps down every cheerful senti- 
ment. Take a man in agreeable circumstances, and 
his feelings will give a colour to future scenes ; every 
thing will appear favourable because every thing is 
^asy ; the mind, softened down by indulgence, shrinks 
even from the contemplation of difficulties; and 
when experience has not furnished him with any in- 
stances of the precariousness of worldly things, he 
leans on these supports too firmly, and does not sus- 
peft that they will give way. ' Hence Agur pref^e^ 
mediocrity to wealth j ^ Lest I be full and deny thee>^ 
•* and say, Who is the Lord ?** Hence yre are to 
charge the rich, **not to trust in uncertain riches." 
The admonition implies the tendency there is in thp 
^uent to indulge iBUch a dependence. ' Having fnenas 


jBbiu xkii.} DimppmOmentrxfLife. VtB 

and po we r fa l affiances, and enccmra^ed by the 'succesi 
of their former pbins iuid lexertions, the c^hdiiidon 
&II0WS i ^^ To*rm6rrow shaU be as thk day, and nnicli 
5^ n(K)re abundant." *^ Tlmt inw^ thought is, that 
*f thdr houses shsdl continue fore!rer, and their tlwell' 
f^ tng'pbces to - aU generations : they c^U their hnd 
<c after theifr own name." ^* He saith in Ids heart, 
f^ I -shall never be moved : for I shall never be in ad- 
f* vehttty.^' Hfear the man whose ground brought 
?^ forth plentifolly ; ^ Soul thou hast much goods hid 
^' up for inany years, take thine ease, eat, drink and 
*• be merry.** When did not prosperity promote car- 
nal security and presu^iptuous confidence ? Of Moab 
Gbd cofnplains, ** Thbii hast trusted in thy works 
* and in thy treasures.** ** Jeshurun waxed fat, and 
** kicked. Then he forsook God which made him, 
'** and lightly estimated the rock of hiis salvation.**' 

For this is not the case witji the people of t^e world 
only ; even the godly are in danger of the saipe evil. 
David is an exanipl^. Though l\e had passed through 
very trying scenes, the ease which succeeded seenis 
to have abqlished the memory of them, and by con- 
tinued indulgence his hopes became earthly and rash, j, 
** In my prosperity t said, I shall never be moved." 
Good Hezekiah furnishes another instance. He Had 
been recovered from sickness, delivered froni invasion, 
and enriched by presents ; " But Hezekiah rendered 
^^ not again according to the benefit 4one unto him ^ 
•* for his heart was lifted up j*' his greatness elated 
him. He gloried in his abundance,, and vainly ex- 
posed the treasures of his palace ; to the ambassadors 
of Babylon he shewed his nest, and they told Nebu- 

chadneszfur their maimer, wkb returned and tcx}k k. 
Jt i# tjii» v«7 inage under aR^kidi tliM plunderer 
ipeaks of his piHage } ^' 9y line «lreHglh of my hand 
^ i have done it, and by myi^naAom (^ ftir I am pm* 
^^ d^t ; W I have r^m^^nced the bmtada 4ii tfo {»eo^ 
^ pie, and hfive rpUied their iwasures ^ and «by hand 
^< hath fa«ii4 a# a^neet the riches roftbt peopie: teid 
:^ i9S OM gathercid tggs ;that acs left, havs i -^atfaMed' 
^^ aU the earth j ai4 ' thece yfzs none tlmt tnoved th^ ' 
.^^ 'Sd^gt or opened the tnonch, or peeped/* And' thk 

ly^ To ohs^rye in thf^e wordf i9apB«thing ^vf 
lAf^sji and vAiU r ^ Then I 9aid» I shall' die in aagr* 
^< vest!*' Ah, jQbi '^ BwK sot thysatf of «9taant>wv 
<< ^or thott know^st not what a day may bring £okAJ^ 
<c While you ^peak^ tl^ ^tqrm ig r^ing which vaV 
^ sh9ke down your nest» aod lodge, its contents upoa 
^* the dung-hiB-'' In a few hQurs you will be deprive^ 
of all ; one messenger shall announce the loss of yoiuyr 
cattle ; anotl)^ the destruction of your serv^ts i ;» • 
third the death of your children Yoif wiU &el yp^ 
health converted into loathsomefiess af^ duKa^e ; and 
you will sit amongst the ashes^ and t^}^e a potsherd to 
scrape yourself with^* And while, your head is bar* 
to the pelting qf the pitiless storm, your friends witf 
come around you, and fead you lect^res upon hypoc- 
risy, and insinuate that the sins in which you have pnU 
yately indulged have at last found you out. . Miserar 
He comforters ! And you, alas ! how changed yoiit 
f^oioe ! You will say in the bitterness of your soul. 

^ t t^afi liot in^ safety, neiciier had I i^st, nelthet^x^^ F 

Scr ignorant are we 6f ftitaritf ;- sp efrt)tie6tis are 
Hft in onir caknlatidns ; sb liable are we to ihbrtifyii^g 
liSdmtitdes T' ^ tli< inl«d>itants c^ Maix^th ^Otracited care- 
^^itdlyfbr gtod, botevtt came down from the lord' 
^UDto the gate of torusaleiti/' ^ Bebdd;* says Hez* 
c&isA, ^fm^ |ieacei had great Utteraes&i" * ^We< 
^\ looked forffeac^/' says the Churjsh, ^ bot no good' 
^ came j and for a^ ^me of health, and behold trott^" 
^^ Ue.** Indeed whatever engagies our afl^ioii may 
boinime- a* souroe <tf sorrow ; whateirer ex!dtes^ oar hope' 
Bovy pfot&^ the mealfs- of cttsaf^ointinent: Siicb bli 
t\f» hardcoAditioA upon whidi we.tsdoe aB oW earthly 

Ate we secure from dlsapfioiktrtifint* with regard tc> 
Life ? This is the tenure by Which we hold^ all our 
possessions^^ and nothing, cto be more uncertain. '^ For 
^man also knoweth not his time; as the fishes that 
*^are taken in an' evil net, and the birds that are 
^ caught m the snare ; s6 are the isons of men snared 
*' in an evfl time, When it felleth suddenly upon 
« them.** •* Go to now, ye that say. To-day or to- 
" morrow we wilD go into such a dty, and continue 
there a year, and buy and sell, and get g^n where- 
as ye know not what shall be oii the morrow* 
•*For what is yotir life? It is even a vapour, that 
** appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth 

Are we secure from disappointment in our 
Health ? This blessing is necessary to our relbhing 
tvery other enjoyment; but how precarious is the 

4Sf. bhkppoifiiments of Life. X.iz%. %x\it 

Mntiniiaiiee of it \ Upon h&w many deCcate and com^ 
bined causes does it depend I How easily may some of 
them lie deranged ! Are ^e eyer safe from those acci* 
dents which may strike, 6r those diseases which may 
invade ns i How many have been compelkjl by pdn 
asd indisposition to drop an enterprise which they had 
undertakes^ a jonrney which they had begun ! 

Are we secure from disappointment with regard to 
Ghildrbh^ The> forebodings -of the parental mind 
ara iaoA smd flattering ; btft. Oh U hoikr unanswerable 
to eager expeftati<m have events often proved ! *^ Thlsf 
^Vaame shsdf comfort us^' has been said of many a 
child who has been dismenf!ft»ered or siddy in body, be- 
douded in understanding, vitious and disorderly in 
life, embarnttsed and miserable in circumstances. The 
fatiier iuid looked 6H*ward, and promised himself ati 
entertaining companion ; and behold the care and the 
expense of fourteen years carried down to the grave ! 
See Raicfael; she has been laying aside the little gar- 
ments her busy hands had wrought, and putting out 
of sigtt the toys which lately charmed the desire of her 
eyes ; and ^^ weeping for her children, refuses to be 
^* comforted h8cai:^e they are not." 

Are ^9re secure from disappointment with regard to* 
Friendship? How many of our ponneffioris have 
drc^ped us abready, and by their painful defections 
have 'called upon us to cease from man. How small 
ia the ^ number of tnie sterling friends, who will abide 
the day of trial ! Some of those who are now fawn- 
ing- woukf not, if" a diange of circumstances occure^, 
even know us. They leaVe the garden in winter, 
there is nothing \o gather.* The flower which they 

fitiu xxih] Disapfmntments rf Life. 4SS 

pUced in their bosom, as soon as it has exhaled its per- 
fume, they throw withered into the dirt. Of what 
use is the scaffolding when the bnilding is finished; 
It is laid by out qi sight. ** My brethren/' says the 
renowned sufferer^ ^^ have dealt decd|tf uUy as a brook^ 
^ and as the stream of brooks they pass away ; what 
^ time they wax warm they vanish j when it is hot 
*• they are consumed out of their jdace/' 

Are we seciure from disappointment with regard to 
Frop£eity? Where can you safely lay ^ treasure 
upon earth ? Water inundates, flames devour, moth 
and rust corrupt, thieves break through and steal* 
Riches make to themselves wings and fi^e away. Ap- 
pearances may be favourable, pbns may be well laid, 
every assistance necessary to success may be procured;' 
but ''the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to 
"the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet 
" riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to 
'^ men of skill ; but time and chance happenisth to 
** them all." " Money is a defence," and hence it is 
so an^ously desired, so universally pursued ; but how 
many have fallen from the highest affluence into the 
depths of indigence, and have had their necessities em- 
bittered by the recoUeftion of the plenty which once 
made their cup to run over. ** Wo to him that cov- 
O* *« eteth an evil covetousness to his house, that he may 
^' set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from 
the power of evil !** " Though thou exalt thyself as 
''the eagle, and though thou set thy nest amongst the 
'♦ stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the Lord/^ 
Let us conclude by observing, that it would be an 

abuse of this part of our subjed, were you to suppose 

Gog • 

434 Bis^ppimnunts <fUfi. [Sm* *'iK*r' 

that we i-ecommetid you tO' cherish evferiasting appr^* 
hension and gloom. Much of pur happiness lies in^ 
freedom from suspicion and anxiety* To live * with ik 
troubled and desponding mind' is as bad as any thing 
we can a^hially suffer. Imaginary grief is frequently 
worse than real. It is displeasing to God when we 
sour the mercies he gives us to ec5oy by distrust. We^ 
niay avoid solicitude, and not be guilty of the worldly^ 
confidence which we have condemned. But it does re- 
quire you', * 

First, To be moderate in ydtir attachmeiits, and %t>^ 
ber in your expeftations. The Way to escape disap^ 
pointment^ is to keep youir hopes humUe, and to cilt^ 
tivate such a' disposition as David expressed when he- 
said, ** Lord, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes- 
•* lofty: neither do I* exercise myself in great matters,* 
"or in things too high fof me- Surely I have be- 
•* haved and quieted myself as a child that is weaned^ 
** of his mother : my soul is even as a weaned child." 
The admonition of the wise man is net designed to' 
embitter the' comforts of life,, but to remind us of its- 
unavoidable calamities, and to keep us from being, 
surprised and disconcerted when they arrive j " If a* 
** man live many years, and rejoice in them ail ;. yet 
*• let him remember the days of dartness, for they shall 
*• be many : all that cometh is vanity.** If, in spite , l(P 
of reason, and the uniform deposition of travellers,* 
you wiff go forth, assured that in your journey the' 
weather will be always fair, and the road always* 
smooth, you must be left to the tuition of events. If 
you will enter the world expecting to find it a pa»- 
dise, thorns and briars and scorpions and drou^^t will 

Mwiu xaiiiO Disappointments of Life. 4AS 

^OOB convince you that ycu are in a w3deraess. This 
^ution, my young Frieuds, peculiarly belongs to 
you. Your ^age is sanguine* You are most liable 
to be decayed by appearances^ because you have not ^ 
4bund how seldom they accord with reality. Do not 
ferm too flattering a piAure of human life. Believe 
the teslunoixy of Scripture. Go sometimes to the house 
of mourqiBgy rather than to the house of mirth. Listen 
to those who have -gone before you. You only see a 
little narrow arm of the sea sheltered by the neighbour- 
ing hills 4 but. some have sailed beyond the reach of 
your eye,, a^ have. seen storms and wrecks. 

• Secondly, It calls upon you ta seek a better ground 
of confidence, and to make the I^ord your trust. Crea- 
tures are broken reeds, but he is the Rock of Ages» 
They are broken cisterns, but he is the Fount^n.of 
Living Waters*- ^^Put not your trust in princes, nor 
^^ in the son of man in whom there is no help. Uk 
*^ breath goeth forth, he returned! to has earth ; in 
Hthat ve»y day his thoughts perish.'* "Happy is he 
^^ that hath the God of Jacob for, his help, whose hope 
.".is in the Lord his God.*' Yes, there is something 
'firm and certain* God will not. deceive u% cannot 
disappoint us. His power is almighty, his mercy en* 
.dureth for ever, his - word is £iuthfulness and truilu 
f^ Th^[«fore will I look imto the Lord, I will wait ifor 
" the God of my salvation.'' Having committed aU 
my concerns: into his l^nds, aod knowing .that he car- 
Atk for me,> I am cai^^^l ^Q^ nothing. Persua4ed that . 
JHe who }fd& tlie. diredion of every event will 9^4ke 
JlU things to work together, for my good, I feel a peac^ 
fi^'hich passeth ,aU uqderstandiog, and rejoice in the 

430 Dbappmmnunu ^ lifi. ' t^a^ xxiu 

language of the Cburdiy ^* God is onr r^69^ aB4 
** su-ehgth, a very present hdp in tiwUe : therefnnr 
<< will we aot fear though the enrdi he reousifed, ao4 
^< though the mouatfias be carried into the uidsi: pf 
^ the sea ;• though the waters thereof rotfr and be 
"^ouUed, ^nd the OKNintains shake with the swdling 
•* thereof/* " There is a river, the $treaips whereqf 
^* shall mHist gla^ Uie city of God, the hdy t^hce t>f 
« the taberwKies of the Most Wgh/' 

Jhirdly, It calls upon you to seek aft^r a preparation 
for all the changing scenes of life. Tt is better to de* 
pend upon cpnstitution than atmosphere, and to be 
equal to any ^n>ate rather than confined to one. '' k 
18 better to depend upon appetite than dainties ; ddU 
icacies are not always to be procured, and what ber 
f:ome8 of you when they are wanting if you cannot 
3tve upon common food \ Pivine Grace will preserve 
$he balance of the soul in varying conditions \ it win 
iecure you in prosperity, and sustain you ip the day 
nf adversity. Thfs sandified Qaniel when a minister 
fxf state, and soothe him when fn the den of lions. 
This cabled Ftol to s^y, ^^I know bot|^ how to he 
f < abased, and I know how to abound : every where 
^^ and in all things \ api instruded both to be full and 
to be hungry, both to abound and to suflfer need* 
I can do adl thmgs thix>ugh Christ who strengthen^ 


*• me.*' 

finally. It calls upon you to look beyond this vain 
and mutable world, to a state of sdkl and unchangea* 
ble happiness. Whatever advantages religion affi>xds, 
by epat^ing us to endure and to improve the difficul* 
ties and trouUes of life, it does not hinder ^s from 

Ssiu xxkfO Dis^fmtmenls tf Lifih 4Sy 

fMfiog ousehmrui ciyqamitancw of tml apd iniiMK^ 
frption. " We 9fe troi^t^ed on every aide," i£ ** w>t 
^ distrcased ; we are perplexed," if ^' act in despair { 
^ peraecitted," if ^^ not forsaken.) caat down," if ^^ bot 
^ deatrojmL'* To die is gain. Death ends our toil 
and our s$ri^, jet^d brings ijs^o t)ie vest that *^ i^emakis 
^ for the people of God>" Then shadows will be ex? 
^hangfsd for suhstancew Then we shall embrace our 
enjoyments without fear of losii^ . them# Then fare 
'well care and disappointment. Our ^' sun sbaQ no 

more go down, nor" our ^^ moon withdraw her. 

shining ; for God" is our ^^ everlasting light, and 
^ the days of" our ** mourning** are •^ ^nded." 




« » 

> • t 

I • 

111 ' II .1 II '^f VSSSm^S \ I ■■"■ I JIM I i|. gStt 




Mat. vi. 94. 


AVD DESPISE The oraER. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. 

THERE ^ something in the Scripture 
nitod to eyery ta^e except a sininl one. The VStit 
indeed i& so pore, so holy in its Author, its principles^ 
and its derign, tliat it is the easieft thing in the vraM 
to account for infideKty and error ; they are the tau 
ural <^pprition of men <tf corrupt nand^ But with 
regard to others, ev«ry peculiar turn of mind may be 
indulged, and the same e»d may be sficured by varioT^s 
means. Some are fbnd of Ufiory ; and here we 
hsve narrations piadng before us ftiildng charader^ 
aiid occurrences. Some love a series of proof and ^ 
process of argumentation ; and here we have iife^uent 
qiedmeiis of close reasoning. Some take pleasure in 
Imagery and OMnparisons ; and here we have a pleni* 
tude of psuraUes and metaphcm* And some aise charm- 


^K. xziirO NeutraBfy Jn Rri^^f Sec. 4$»l 

' Ad with proverbft and aphorisms ; and hire we .find- 
4etacbie^ senieiioed, which by thetjr brevity^ are easily, 
lemembered, and by their * significancy fiimilh mate*, 
rials for the xnind to ui^old and a{^ly. And of all 
these,^ perhaps no one is more important and intereft* 
ing than the passage which I have read. *^ No man 
^can serve two nuifters : for either hewffl hate the 
^one, and loVe the other ; or dse he will. hold to the' 
^ one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve . God* 
^ and mammon.*^ 

One word only requires ezpluiatfon. What ia 
mammon ? It is commonly supposed to mean only 
riches i but/as the Biflipp of London has observed in 
Ills Leifture upon this Chapter, the original seems 
tnore extensive, and leads us to consider it as com- 
prehending every thing capable of engaging the aflfec- 
tions, and of. gaitliog the confidence of men of world- 
ly minds. It is a Syriac word importii^ fereanre^* 
g»n« Whatever therefore is gain to youy is mtsr* 
aoii^ whether it be weakh, or poorer, or. £nne^ er 
semual pleasure. Whatever you iddioe, whatever ^000^ 
place in the room oi God, whatever leads you to op«% 
pose his nature and his will omoerning jow duty 
and your happiness, acceding ta the design^^of our . 
Saviour, fdb under thb denomination. SAbtilty<if 
interpretation is always, and miuutenesa of dectston ia 
generally to be avcMded in expounding, the Scripture ;. 
words ace used in a popular sense ; and they weidd 
become less usefol^ if they were readeired less generaL 
The force of an impression which woutld otherwise, 
have been made^ has often beep diminished by mevis 
eC those exceptions^ qualifications^ restrictions, di^« 




r 7 
I / 



4¥^ Hmtf^fifftn (;Stft.»anKr 

^diaitt, wkktk We to sweb aboilikdtfd In comttelK 
UA» zfiA 8crmoM» diKi tfarougb whkfa the S{mk ^ 
tlteSacfed Wrkings ia suffered te evap€fM:e. Thk^ 
being preflHsed, we proceed to^csdl yowr aerious attea* 
xsoa to* tlifee things. 


GAMMon: sbrV£ God and mammon.^ TbU is deif' 
\j expcesfied. 


'fhid 18 fiilly impEed. 

IH. You otfoHT TO 'serve God. This is feirly 
ioferred. Consider what i say^ and the Lord give you 
iindbrscanding in afi. tldngs* Amen*. 

I. ^* Write the vision, and make it plain npoa ta'- 
^' faies that he may run that readeth it.'' This ordq: 
the inspored penmen have obeyed* They have made 
things dear in pn^rtion as they are momentous ^ 
and such is the per^icuity with which many of the^ 
principles of religion are laid down in the Scripture^, 
that we should deem it impossible for them ever to be 
misundfrstoody did we not know how easy it is to per- 
plex a rule by which we dislike to walk, and remem^ 
ber what, a power there is in the passions to pervert 
the dictates of the understanding, and to baffle the ad- 
monitions of conscience. For instance. What can 
be more fully, mwe ununbiguously expressed than 
the detern)ination before us ? *' No man can serve 
*^ two masters : for either he will hate the one, and 
^* love the other ; or else he will hold to th« one, an^ 


S«*: xxiii.3 ReRgion Exposed. 441 \ 

<* despise the other: ye cannot serve God smd mam-. 
^^* mon." Nevertheless there as»e many v^ho cGffttrive 
to elude the force of this maxim, or who seem resid- 
-ved to make a succession of awful experinnents to try *. 

the certainty of it. The number of this mixed tempo- 
rizing race of Christians is constantly eiicreasing ; and 
whrle they are bringing destruftion upon their own 
souls, they are injuring the cause of the Gospel^ and 
couhtera^ng the bbors of faithful ministers ten-fol(l 
snore than* those who make 90 pretensions to religion* 
•* They have a name to live, while they are dead'*^ 
They wear ** the form of godlines," white they " de- 
•' ny the power thereof/* They ate eq|Qalty remote 
from the excesses of t^e profane md the fervours of 
the pious. They refuse to the passions what- would 
disturb conscience, and to conscienice what would . disf 
turb the passions. Endeavouring to' reconcile zn 
earthly and a heavenly life together^ they waver be- 
tween truth and enror, conviAion and appetite, duty 
and inclination ; and divide their a£fe£lions and ser- 
vices between God and the world. Some moments 
• th ey give to devotion j they pray, th^y Jnite with tha' 
holy assemblies, they sometimes approach the table of 
the Lord. When this Is done they have another mas- 
ter to serve ;^ they leave the house of God, and occu* 
py places of dissipation ; they relish the follies and 
comply with the manners of a sinful age ; and as the 
eye follows their career, you see them dropping one 
distindion after another till they are undist^nguishingly 
blended with the crowd. * 


Nor are these persons wanting in excuses to palliate, 

if not to justify their pradice. They allege that it 

H H h 


4*T Neutrality in £5£r. zxui« 

lenders religion less dbje^onablej that it keeps up' 
an intercourse which renders them useful ; thatr--but 
I disdain to enumerate such pleas of w1orldIy-minded<^ 
fless-i-^hcy will not abide the day of trial } they are 
aH as tow before the £[anie ; the declaration of our 
Lord and Saviour consumes them. Vor observe, my^ 
bVethren, upon wfiat he lays the sti^ss d£ his reasoning. 
It b the IMFO^IBILITT of the case. He does not say. 
You shall not. You must not> You ought itot, but yot* 
CANNOT. *• No man can serve two masters, - Ye CA»i' 
*' N^ftT^'serve God and mammon.'* 

Tli^te''are howev'er four cases in which you mxf 
sisrve two masters ; but the^ exceptions will only reit- 
4er the general rule, the more remarkable, and will 
a^' help U8 to und^stand* it. For» first, you may 
serve two masters successively^ *. There are some who' 
have hired in various families; and they have seirved 
the gemle and the froward, the evil and the ' good. 
Chmstians oa(;e served divers lusts atfd pleasi^res, ancH 
now they, serve' 6od ; but they did not serve both al' 
th^'satoe ttoie> this was impradicable, "B^ing then' 
^* made free' from sia» ye l)ecame th6 servants of ri^- • 
** teousness. For whett ye \«^re the servants of sin, 
••ye were free from righteousdess." Secondly, you may 
serve two masters by serving one of them in reality, and 
the other in pretence. But while you truly love the 
wcMrld, wiH God be satisfi ed with appearances and pro- 
fessions? Is he deceived? Can any disguise conceal' 
you frpni his, eye I Will he not abhor you the more 
for your hy^crisy ? And will not such a course crf^dis* 
•imulatioa be a life of meanness, embarrassment, and' 
misery; ia which you will offer violence to natur^; 

.jrikl perpetually dread theHdete^on of yo^r Mil dbMxs 
4^r? Thirdly, you may « serve .two masters unequadU 
)y* WhSe devoted to tlie one^ you may occasional- 
;Iy attend l|ie other; hfkt you cannot be engaged to 
iliiin.^lfio, you cannot serve him constantly, you can- 
not make l>is service your business, cannot be entire^ 
rBt his . disppsaL 'But nothing less than this does OoA 
-require pf all thqse who serv^e ^Him« Fourthly, ytjb 
'may serve two masters when they are on the same sid^, 
'and differ only in d^ee. Thus you ob^ parent 
and magistrates, and God too : for in obeying them, 
7DU obey him ; he has commanded it. - But it is ot|h 
Verwise when two parties hostile tb each other^ require 
you to espouse their jarring interests, and each si^v, 
f^* My son, give me thy <hMf t/^ Now this is l^e 
fr<a^e with the masters. here mentioned, for fnammon 
^is not subordinate to God, nc^ does At enjoin the same 
things. Their orders ire djametrjoally opporite. Tfce 
one commands you to .walk by efuth^; the other, ^o 
walk by ^ght.; ^hevQme, to be proud, the other to ^e 
Immble ; iihe one, to cleave to the dust, the othei* to 
'liave your conversation in heaven ; ;Che one, to be HI 
WiXiety, ithe other, .toi>e careful for nothing ; the one, 
to be content with such things asydii have} the other, 
to enlarge your desire as hdl ; the one, to wi^hlicdd, 
the other, to give, to be ready to<distribute, wiBingto 
communicate. Now what 'is to be done in a .ca^e 
like this ? if the mind be fidl, it can hold no more. 
Human facuUies are not infinite. The operations of 
the soul are.Smii:ed. We tannot remain in a state of 
equilibrium laetween contrary atlr^ons, without pre- 
ferring one to the other. Hence we nl\!i'ays take' a 

** . 

444 Nemnility in [Sfi &.' jurif r» ~ 

fart; and the part chosen btcomes the master t)f the 
bea^ and obliges u^ to separate froiq tji^e rest^ anich 
as they oppose ea/dti other or interfere, v Here theq^ 
«ny d^ fearers, you are furnished with a cciterion, 
4>y which to jydge/of your state and your charader« 
The conclusion is obvious aB4 uiidemable. If you 
love and serve the world;^ you cannot love and serve 
Oodv And the exclusion is serious and dreadfiil ; . for 
, you are jhere reminded that worldly attachjnents, de«^ 
pudencies, ^nd pursuits, are not oply iujurious to real 
religion, but entirely incompatible with it ; th^ they 
are not souie of those jinferior mistakes and infirnciities 
which we deplore in good men; but a deacHy evil 
which overspreads ail the poi^rs of the soul, infeds 
all the principles of jadiop, gives the , whole life a 
wrong bias, the whole man ^ direction to^^rards heU. 
Wherefore come out froQ[i, among them, and be ye 
separate, saith the l«ord, and touch not the unclean 
thing; antl I will jreceive yo»." *fLovp not the 
world, neither the things of the world ; for if any 
man love the world, thcj love of the Fatl)er is not 
f* in him." f' Y^ adulterers and adulteresses^ know 
f*ye hot that the friendship of the world is enmity, 
** u-ith God ? Whosoevef therefore will be a friend of 
« the world is the enemy of God ?" 5* No man can 
^* serve tvo masters : for either he will hate the one, 
f < and love the other ^ or else he wiU hold tp the one, 
«* and despise the other. Y^ cannot serve God and 

f* mammon." 

• * 

II. You cannot serve both j but one of these you 
win unavoidably serve. The second proposition is as 


trM. as thet'fiivt. ' )r fo a^ hnpoaiiUe fcnpa tnan'tobe 
widMynt some ifiaeter, as t6 serVfe'iMre-nlasters tlian 
one. Man is an afttve being, and must' be employed '; 
he wiH always be engaged in the pursuit of soxm 
thing either by e^^eltion or desire. Man is a depend- 
ant creature. Like the vine he muft lean for support ; 
and if the dpi be not near, he will embrace the bram- 
ble. f|e thirsts ; sind if he l^as forsakep the Foun- 
.tain of Living Waters, hie will repair to broken cis- 
terns, or kneel down to the filthy puddle. A sense d# 
his wants and weaknesses produces an unea^ine^s. wliich 
urges him to seek after assistance and relief. .Hence man 
' cannot be without attachment. Not finding in him- 
self the good he desires, he passes forth and adheres to ^ 
something external ; but this o})ject necessarily gov- 
erns him ; for it is the ypry nature of love to subject 
US to that which we love ; and it fastens us by various 
ties \ for desire and aversion, hope and fear, joy and 
sorrow, zeal and revenge, are only modes of aff^- 

There is nothing in which men are so tenacious 
as inde^pendence and liberty ; and . even when they 
are (Restitute of the substance they glory in the shad- 
ow, - The Jews are an . example.' In reply to our 
Lord they said ^' We are Abraham's seed, and were 
** never in bondage to any man." What! Have j^u 
forgotten the land of Egypt ? Did you never serve (he 
Philistines,' the Moabites; the Ammonites ?, Were you 
not seventy years in Babylon ? Whose soldiers are 
these stationed among you ? Bring me apiece o{ fndk^ 
' ey, " whose image and superscription is it ?" Are you 
' not eveji now wearing, the yol^e of Caesar ? Yes j and 

I • 

ryoa are wearing another yoke iar i9ore di^grracei;}! 
-thaji even thia, md wiiich enslaves the miml ; for ^* hie 
«€ that oomoutteth sin is the servant of sin.** . . 

■ • « 

^> And dew not .thbegonnplify the ft^y aii4 delnsiop 
of sinners? They imagiQe tHeroselvia^ftobe thdr^onvti 
ttMters i especially when .they hsire shaken off vrhite 
.^ley deem the prcjiidioes of e^ucatipiii anct the sam- 
ples of siiperstition. . Tlien th^ are free indee^l : } they 
^ve vithout coptroul i »nd ^th affected pity coniid^ 
'Chfiirtiaqs ja ^m^tot to t|ie tftoH hnmUiating restnSntt» 
But vh^t if these advocates for independence shofuld 
^ founfl dares /theQiselres» and ai then: boastings Of 
ireedom be tmly great swelting wotds of vanity i 
f^ ynSh they promise ithem iUberty, they themselv^ 
^ are tlie servants of corruption ; .fpr of whom a tntu 
b overcome^ of the saitie b.hebraught|nto bondage./' 
Know ye npt, thiat t0 whom ye yield yoursdyes sa- 
vants to obey; his servants ye are ,to whom ye ob^» 
^ whether of sin unto deaths or of obedience imta 
*^;rigfateousne8fiu" >What ! is there no other master chw 
iGod ? Because you refiife allegiance to your bwfUl 
OTvereign) [does it k^w that yon are ycinr own ? Mal^ 
ti^re not be t»ur|Mrs ? faist^ of being tmdc^ tht 
.government of one, may you not beunde,r thet^j^nql- 
Ay of many, ^ each 9ee|dng his gain from jhis ^i^r- 
^^er ?" Instead of paying, a regular #t^ reasonable 
tribute, may you not 1)ecome the yicclo^s of illegal ei^- 
action, and the tools pf arbitrary power ? Hear What 
IShemaiah said to Rehoboam and the princess of Judah j 
•^ T« have forsaken the Lord ; therefore I have left you 
/^ in the hnd of SMshak king of Egypt : and .they sliall 
^ be kis servants, that they may know nay serrice, and 


«* th^ servlc* of tHe kittgdbihs of the countries.'^ *t^ 
dke same purpose is the htiguage of God by Moses ttr' 
the Israelites ; ^ Because th64 servedst not the Lord Ay 
••^GodVmth jdjrfulness, arid with gladness of heart, 
^^ot the abundance of ril' things; therefore shsQfr 
^ thou serve thitf e enemies which the Lord shall sinid: 
^ against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in i^^^^a!^ 
^ ness, ind in want of aU tMngs ; and he shall put' a 
^ yoke of iron upon thy necK uhtil he haft 'destroyed 
^ thee/ All this is fulfifled^ ih the unha|^y experi- 
ence of e'i^ry transgressor. Eor his rebellion he ^ 
doohied by a law of inevitable aeceslity to serve Avett 
tyrants. Yes, if you are not the subjects tif httoiyityy, 
you win be the vassals of pride ;- and^ what a life will* 
itfnbitioh lead^yOu ! If you are not the servants of meek- 
ness, you will be th^ shves of passi6n ; and is the man 
to be envied; who is governed by the impulsed df such 
i ftiryf See a man who has sok) Minsdf tbxovetou^- 
ness ? What African* slave ever dneidged for such a. 
lUkmaster » hi», compelling Mm to rise early, to sit 
tfp late, to eat tlie bread of sMrows ^ to a^ume every 
flirm of falsehood; to stoop to every instance of mean' 
Mss, forbidding him the luxury of refresUng the 
bowels of the poor and of blessing the orphan and the 
Wiiiow,^ ofeen denying him^ the atcommodatioAs and 
sometimes the necessaries of fife; and thus forcing 
him to live ih bi$;gary, to die in wealth ! Discbdmiiig: 
the service of Geid you «rve the devil, who ^aq^loys 
you in ^hnidgery and rewards yOn vrfth c&mamlioii, ^^ for 
^ the wages of sb is death/' Discatdiiig the 8a* 
viour's yoke^ wiichi Is easy, and his bukkn which is' 
Ight, you wear the fafliilg and heavy chains ^ vkcf,. 

# • 

448 IhutralHy in [Ser. xxiiu 

and what slavery equals a wicked ]i£^ ? ' See the sinner 
impelled along violently like the swine possessed with . 

demons, he folldtirs a course which he condemns him- 


sdf for pursuing ; he does things of which at the very 

time he knows he shall repent as soon as he has done 

them ; actions which he abhors in others, he is forced 

to perform himself ; when he goes forth he cannot • 
tell how he shall return ; for this does not depend up- 

* on him, but upon circumstances over which he has 
no power ;' he may see ch: hear something, by which 
impressions may be produced which , he cannot resist ; 
he may accidently meet with one of his tyrants who 
may say to him. " Do this,*' and he must do it ; his 
passions and his lusts make him toil at their pleasure ; 
and he goes on executing their orders, though his un** 
derstanding blushes, reason remonstrates, conscience 
upbraids and threatens ; he sees and approves better 

• ^ things, and follows worse ; and this is the man who 

pretends to be free ! 

You say. Religion demands of us a succession of 
services, from which you are exempted. But, O ye 
votaries of the world, let us examine your claims, and 
see wherein your pre-eminence appears. Have you 
then no services to render ? Think of your priva- 
tions and sacrifices and submissions ; think of the nu- 
merous and arbitrafy laws you have to obey ; the 
laws of opinion, the laws of custom, the laws of ex- 
travagance, the laws f of folly. Yes; I sometimes* 
think if religion were to require of me such duties as 
the world imposes upon its enslaved followers ; if it 
required me to turn day into night, and deprived me 
of seasonable repose ; if it required me to embrace in« 

Sb ft. xxiih} keligion Efcfpttdn * 449 

decefit and in^iiriotts fashions, and to expose at once my 
modesty and my health ; \i it required me to adopt 
expensive modes' of life Vsrhich devoured my substanpe, 
and involved me in pecuniary disgrace ; if it required 
me to spend my evenings from home, and to resign 
domestic enjoyments to rove from one insipid amuse* 
ment to another j if. it required me to give up all that 
is easy and simple and natural, for ceremonies^ visits 
and crowds, where adl is artificial, studied and forced r 
if it required me to convert my dwelling into the con- 
fusion aiid disorder of a rout \ to stoop to' the absur- 
dity of a masq;uerade j to hassard my own life and the 
life of my fellow creature, because 1 lud received' an 
offence, perhaps unintentionally giveUj, a:nd allowed 
me not the choice of refusal } then f should conceive 
a disgust; then I should long to emancipate myself 
from such capticicTus despotism ; \ should sigh for lib- 
.erty ; for what liberty could I. enjoy while compelled 
to submit to what is unreasonable and foolkh, to what 
is dishonourable and shamefuV, to what is injurious 
and ruinous ? But remember, ye followers of the vainr 
world, these are the commarKls vou obey } these arer 
the services you render^ 

Still you tell us, that our Master requireisr t(s even! 
to deny ourselves ; that this is the grand la^ of hi» 
kingdom ; and without obeying it, we cannot, be hi^ 
disciples. But we contend that you are precisely in 
the same circumstances. We can prove that y(^ al^ 
so are required to. exercise self-denial ; and that this 
is the chief command you have to comply with in the 
service of the world. And mark the difference be- 
tween us. Our Master requires us to deny only what 


450 Neuirality in tSBR. ±ttii^ 

IS false and vsdn ; yoilrs, vHiat is soHd and true. Ouw 
requites us to deny what wotild only make Ub disor- 
derly and ttiiseraUe ; yours, iK^iat would render yoit 
peaicefdt asnd happy. Ours rei^mrie^ us only to deny 
the ▼Dfcie'of passion and appetite f yours, the voice of 
yeason andr ojf conscience. Ours requires xA td deny 
the body for thie sake of the soul ; yours^ the soul for 
the sake of the body. Ours requires us to give up* 
Aot&ing but wKM he wiH more than repay ; yours^ to 
sttrtendier an nit^rest, for the loss of whicb yoo can- 
not b^'^demhified in time or^emity.' 

Since then it appears^ thaf • yotf cannot serve two" 
masters ; and since it is equally certain that you will 
serve one, we plead for God, and call upon you to 
serve Him. It is the 

III. Third division of our subject. &ut here I feef 
fesdy to dnm back ft om my. engagement : I amr 
shocked t6 think it flrould be found necessary to make' 
tf eomparisDii^ between the evef^blessed God and 
idols. 1b» vHar depravity of the world risen to^ silcb a> 
fkch^ i amd are meff so eixceecfingly blinded aind infat- 
uated^ as to require a preacher to attempt to prove that 
it is better to^serve God than mammon ! f isel abo 
))erplexed as to- the proofs I shsdl adduce j the case 
seems too plsun to need evidente ; and of cfvidtnte 
there is no emL L^ us make a selection of two avti* 
ties, and 

' Remind you, first, of his varioits and topsnia- 
BLE CLAIMS iu'which he stands peculiar and -su* 
preme. There is such a thing as justice, and it con- 
dsts in rendering tp t& idieir due. Render to God hk 

ibe^ be Mily ji»t;» aa4 yoa most bue fldig|bM» AX 
you »ret» and ijl you have is his ; he gave you exu^ 
tence ; and atf /our capacities of a6tion and of enjoyr 
meot were not only derived from him, . but are eontior 
ned by him ; '^ for in Him we live and move and 
^< have our being.'* There is such a tiung as grati* 
tude ; and it cGmists in endesHTOuring to make suita^ 
tde returns for favours received. Endeavour to make 
euitable re|uws to Cod for the favouis you have re^. 
ceived from him ; be only grate£iil> a9d you must be 
religious. Whose eun warms you f Whose air do ypy 
bceathe ? Who has fed you all your :Ufe Ipng unto 
this day ? When you were Ipst^ who sent his own So( 
fo seek and to save you f When ypn were in the bon^ 
dage of corruption, who by a {nrice of infinite value ac« 
<Complished your release? Ii^ aU your mercies be 
summoned to appear around you $ the blessf ngs of iiv 
lancy, of ymith, of mature age ; the blesapjps of Pror* 
idence and of Grace ; the blesnngs whi^ you possess 
sdready, and those which as attemd>le you hope to 
enjoy ; and your Preacher has only to €m» forwMd 
and say, *^ I beseech, you therefore^ Brethren^ by the 
^^ merd^ of God, that yon present your bodies a Uv«* 
^' ing sacrifice* holy and acceptable* which is your rea^ 
^ sonable service.'' * So simj^e ^e the principles from 
which the pradice of refigion |s deduced { 

Secondly. We would rantnd you of ms dbsions 
tH EMPLoviNO YOU IK HIS SERVICE; in these ad* 
to, who is a Ged like untehim? Why does he re^ 
quire you to serve him ? ^ Can a man be profitable 
^uoto God» as he that is wise may be profitable un- 
ffte himself f Is. it any pleasure to the Ai.mighty 


1 i ' * 

452 NeufrMty in []SsR«'xxaL 

*' that thou art righteotis : or gain to the Mosf 
•* High that thou makest thy way peifec| ?^' He does 
not stand in need of you i but he knows jthat you 
stand in need of him, and that without him you can do 
nothing. Does he require your service to display his 
grandeur, to exerdse his authority, to estaUish his do- 
minion ? Hear his own language : *^ O that there was 
f^ such a heart in them, that they would fear me, and 
^* keep all my commandments always, that it might 


• * • • • • 

DREN FOR EVER." He employs you to invigorate . 
your powers, to dignify your nature, to train you up 
^or endioss perfection, and to bestow upon you innvi- 
merable advantages under the notion of a reward. 
These advantages may be considered two ways. In 
the engagements of the master, and in the experi- 
ence of the servants. These do npt always agree. 
Men as an alurement, frequently promise what they 
never perform ; and those who have followed them 
have had bitter reason to complain of disappointment. 
But God is faithful ; and as his promises are exceeding 
great and precious, so are they all yea and amen in 
Christ Jesus to the glory of God by us. He spreads 
before us in his word every attradion to encourage 
us. ** Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, 
" my servants shall eat, but ye shall be hungry : be- 
f^ hold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall be thirs- 
^^ ty: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall 
^' be ashamed : behold, my servants shall sing for joy 
f* of heart, but ye shall cry for sorrow of heart, an4 
*f shall howl for vexation of spirit.^- And has he not 
tesdized all this i Lee us cofisult the experience of 


Ser* itxni.3 Religion exposed. *5» 

those who have served him. And observe the fairness 
of the exaniples to which we appeal. Some of you 
would be unquafified judges ; you could not miake a 
proper comparison, because you are only acquainted 
with one qf the things to be compared. You know 
what the service of sin is, but you are strangers to the 
service of the Lord Jesus Christ. But there are per- 
sons who have tried bpth ; after serving the world 
they have served God, And if it were formerly better 
with them than now, what keeps them from going 
back ? What detains them from the country whence 
they came out ? They have opportunity to return } 
s^dsgre surrounded with the same temptations as oth.- 
erq. Th^y have found something more divine s^nd 
satisfactory ; they have tasted of the grapes of Eschol^ 
and they no longer sigh for the leeks and onions of 
Egypt. He is rising from his knees where he has . 
been saying, *^ Thoii hast dealt well with thy servant, 
*« O Lord." Take him aside and converse with 
him. He is able to give a reason of the hope that is 
in him. Why you often mourn. " But our sorrow 
** shall be turned into joy : o^ir very tears ve bless* 
^* ed ; and we are never more happy than when wg 
** can feel a broken heart and a contrite spirit !** And 
the world frowns upon you. *' But God smile3, and 
^* his favour is life. Heaven is my hpme ; death is . 
*' become my friend j Providence manages all my af- 
feirs J and 1 am careful of nothin^.'*^ And your 
happiness is all future. « No ; I have earnests and 
" foretastes of Heaven. I feel a peace which passeth 
^* all understanding j and sometimes I rejoice with 
?' joy unspeakable and foil of glory. In his sanctva* 


jKntr/dify itt 







*^ 17 1 beiK)ld Jus power and liis gioty# In my doi^ 
^ I find it good to draw nesu* to OodL His statnCflf 
^^ are my song in the house of my fU^image, and X 
^^ rejoice in his wx>rd its one that findeth great qxuU 
Once I thougjxt li^e fovu I SMppo9^ if I began » 
religious cour^, I should new have another happy- 
day ; buti never had a hippy d^y before. j[h»vy 
found aothiag of tlie^ fetters somI bondage o£whith I 
had heardt and by which I had .been iSsgusted* Ifiy 
f^ service has V^n pex^ect ^eedom i and none of hiy 
"^ coxnmaiids ^re grievous. And Oh 1 could I now 
f^ lay open my soul ; could I make you see as I see, 
'5< and f(^l as I feel I taste axui see that the Lord if 
^^ good ; blessed ^ the man that trusteth in him.'' 
All this sinews thiS importance of serving God { but 
whatever shews the impGftani;e <^£ ^t^ ^hfum tJ^ wiSf 
dom of attaicKng to it* 

Let me theo^ my de^r hearers, call* upon you tv 
make a choice. From this hour abandon God. and 
hu ways, and following your idols and your lusts havt 
jail that they aio give you ; or relinquishing the pres* 
ient evt] world, take God for the strength of your 
soul and your pordon foreyer. \f hich of these wiH 
you choose ? I cannot conclude without pr^sssing jfm 
to a dedsiofl. I have jdready been classing you* My 
hope has formed one ^il^isioiBi ) my f^ira second i my 
jeonviction a third. 

I have been hopinq that' some c( you will retli^ 
this evening, and join yourselves to d^e Lord in a peiV 
petual covenant that shall not be forgotten, saying, 
^ Lord, ! am thine, save me. O Lord, other Loids 
f « beside thee have ]>ad don|inion over us, but bj thee 

fhA. Xttit.^ ReAgioH expend. 4Si 

*^only wiB we mdce mention of thy name.'^ Will' 
Aine of yoti rediz^ tliis pleasiog expectatioQ ? Will 
belie among yon my young hearers, verify the Ivor 
pixg^ of prof^iecy, upon which: so many -mittisters^^ 
iD many patrents Have hoped : «' One shaft say, I vcot 
f^the Lord^S; and another shatt call himsdf by the 
^ name of Jacob v and another diaU subscribe with his 
^ hand' imt» the' Lord, and surname himsdf by the 
^ name of Israel/' 

A larger number I fear, will care for none of these 
fbmgs ; but go forth saying with' their rebellious pre- 
deeessors^ ^ I have loved strangers, and after them 
•* will I go.** Let me give you- warning from God. 
Itemember that he will assuredly vindicate the cause 
of Us despi^ authority and goodness ; ^ As for these 
** mine enemies that would liot that I shotild* reign ov- 
^ er them, bring them forth; and slay them before my 
^ face.** If you are detetmined to abandon God, God 
fo deternuned to abandon, you: ^^ But my people 
^ would not barken to my voice ; and Israel would 
^ none of me : so I gave them up Unto their own 
^ hearts* lust, and they walked in thek own counsels/^ 
And have yon considered the awfolnesa of your con« 
ditiod, ^ Without God in the workl ^ ' Death witf 
soon snatch you away from^ your houses and aq^use- 
tti^nts ; and what will you do, if your fstith and hope 
be not in God, when you will have nothing but God 
1^ ? And even previous to this, an evil day may ar- 
rive. Though worldly things do not satisfy the mind, 
they divert it ; and though they are a poor substitute 
for God, they rendei^ you less sensible of your need of 
him. But they are iSk uncertain y and what becomes. 

4S6 ifeMrality U [SxB.* xllik 

of you when they are removed ? To whom will you. 
flee for help, and where will you leav^ your glory ? 

But an obfiervation of the way in which divine ad- 
monittoas is commonly rendered usdess coi^vikces 
me, that the generality of you will not decide with 
the former, nor positively refuse with the latter. ^^ And 
as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and 
Judgement to come, Felix. treinUed, and answered^ 
*^ Cro thy wiy for this time, when I have a convenient 
^^ season I will call for thee«" This is your modeL 
Tou wish to pause and consider. But we catinot al- 
low this evasion } our commission requires an immedi- 
ate reply ; " To-day if you will hear his voice, harden 
** not your heart ) now is the accepted time, now is 
** the day of salvation/* You wish to pause and con- 
sider. But you have no time for hesitation ; you are 
dying while you make the proposal ; " Boast not thy- 
** self of tomorrow, for thou knowest not what a 
«* day may bring forth/' You wish to pause and 
consider. But he may take your excuses for a final 
answer, as they are unquestionably a proof of present 
disinclination, and say, '^ None of the men that were 
*' bidden shall taste of my supper.'' *' He is joined to 
^^ idols, let him alone/' You wish to pause and con- 
sider. But the longer you waver the harder you 
will find it to decide \ objections and difficulties will 
every day multiply. You wish to pause and consider ; 
but when do you mean to determine ? How much 
longer time do you require \ Some of you have had 
twenty, forty, si:tty years to weigh things already, and 
are still undetermined. And what is it to decide, that 
you cannot come to a conclusion thb hour, this mo- 


Ser. XXIII. J .Religion Exposed. 4^7, 

ment ? What room is there for comparison ? What possi-^ 
bUity is^ there of emibarcassment ? O riiame, of httauui 
nature I Here are persons rec^iring additional years to 
determine, whether hell or heaven is the best portion ; 
whether the God ol glory, o^ the god of ihis world is 
the best master* ^' How loiig halt ye betv^n two opin- 
*^ ions ? If the Lord be God; follow him i but if • Baal 
<« be God, follow him." "Wherefore choose ye thirf 
" day whom ye will ^erve." ; ** But as for me and my 
"; house, we will s^rv^e the ix)r<i." May God inspire 
us with this resolution. Amen* 


j'...iL.ijr '*■ 

■L ' .i LL ' . i Li ' . ' ,,: '-/ 



lilXT. 3m:. 4ft, 50. 

A^D ^ srtiMticaMD roMTir bjs wjitn row^^D His DiseifLBSt Jifd 


rs MrMMoraBM^ avd- sister^ ahd mother. 

t ADDRESS this assembly in the 
language of our Saviour to the Pharisees ; ^' WlU( 
^ think ye of Christ V^ And surely a more serious 
ttiquiry it i^ impossiUe io make. To^rojHnions upon 
various other sol^eds are eonoparatively of little conse*^ 
qiwice ^ but it is of the highest importance to enter-* 
tain proper apprehensions of the. person and charader^ 
ttie offices and work of Christ« 

« Tljpere b* however another q^uestion which it is equaW 
fy necessary to aik. What does Christ think of you i 
What yoa ar» in the senttment of your fellow crea* 
tiiffes s^^Difies little. It is a light thing to be ju^fisd 
of man's judgment* Your h2q;ypkiess does aot depend 
vpon him) hemfty.bQ •dec^Vjed b l^t cpndusipiii. 

Sou xu^.} Tb^ Famlf 9f mr UrdL 4S9 

He tiiait jadgetb ycm b the Lord ; ids dedfiion is iiu 
fallible^ and bis fentence regidates yxmr doom. Does 
He Yie V you this evening as enemies or fne^ds ? As 
«f rangef s or relations ? Is it possible to determine this i 
It is not only possibie but easy. Observe what he did, 
and remember What he said in the days of his flesh* 
^< And he stretched forth his hand toward his discij^les 
^< and ssnd, Behold my mother and my brethren ! f*or 
^ whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is 
^ in heaven, the same is my b'Ot^r, and skter, and 
*• mother." 

Our Saviour preached in various places: He was 
now in a ptiVate house ; and is' said to be ^^taHdng to 
^? the people." It marks the ease, Ae simjilicity, the 
fiutiiliarity with which he spake. Wlien a preacher 
can exemplify this mode of address without sinldng* 
he is peciUiarly pleasing to his hearers, and often most 
successful in the force and subliftiity of his thouglits. 
«* While he yet talked to the people, behold his mbtKi 
^ er and his brethren stood without desiring to speak 
** with him " What was the design of his friends it 
is. impossible to deterniine } but they bad something 
interesting to communicate, and could not approach 
him for the intervening multitude. The people' there^ 
fore conveyed alon^ the notice of his rdation from 
xme to another till it reached the person who stood by 
him. ^ Then one ssdd unto him, B^oki thy modief 
^ and brethren stand without, desirii^ to speok with 
<^ thee/' O^r bleBsed Lord was despised and reje<9»d 
t)f men ; but there were some who knew his worthy 
and loved and honoured Unvj^andat hearing of hii 
mother and his brethren, they were ready to eS&daim^ 


4iKy Tie Famiiy ff mm iMd* [$xiL« Itum*^ 

i]q>P7 bMthriKQ ! io hasre such a brodier ! O hx^ 
ftf motha: ! to Iwre s|i€h a son ! Onr Saviour w^ not' 
so coi:i^&i»ed to ]us su}ijed, . as to refuse a new idea, aug^*-- 
gested by . - the oec^sion ; tber^re Jgoowing ' tkicit ) 
tikmghts. he. tells them. of aootber coimpQkm wkh 
him^lf ; from his family ^^orifipg to the fleshy hie; ^ 
leads them to his spiritual kindred ^ apd^ from a uaiop:« 
with him, which iitras temporal and co^finetl to ieff^ ' 
he leads them to one wbic^ was everhstiog imd ett*. 
braided %ll gpod |n^* ^^But h,9 answered and sgid' 
^* unto him ^ that told him» Who is my mpUitr ? 
^ and who are my brethren ? An4 mp stjietchbd 




Whepcp ?ee observe, thstto^ED^ENCE to the mvws^ 


SU8 Christ. Our Lord here giye^ us the chara^i^r ^d 
the privilege of his disciples. " 

I. ITieir Character j they do the will of his 

n. Their Privilege j they are his brother, his sis- 
ter, his mother. ** Remember me, O Lord, with 
^ ** the favour that thou bearest unto thy people : O visit 

me with thy s«dvatioh ; that I may see t|ie good of 
thy chosen^ that I may rejoice in the gladness of thy 
** nation, that I may glory with thine inheritance.'' 

, L We haye the Cha|iact£|l of his c&ciples. He 

8u«^.suc.]j TbiStmHfrfmrLoriL . Ml* 

fJAcribes dienias dwmo ms^ will ov ns Fiatjosn' 
IfHiCH IS m H£AVJW* AH obey ; but Mine do the 
willof the deiol ; idme do the will of aian ; some do 
thmr own wiU ; wd some do the will of God. 

Some do the will of «he deviL This is a dreadftfl 
chaise ; but h is ftlly k supported by the address of 
our Siaviour to the Jews ; *• Ye are of your father the 
*^ -devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do/' And 
what is all sin, but ^< the work of the devil ?•' « Pof^ . 
*<'the devil sinneth from the beginning." He there- 
fore who lives in the practice of sin co-operates with 
Urn, resembles him, strives to please him, fvl&h his 
wishes. The devil loves pride, and the sinner cherish* 
es it ; he takes pleasure in revenge, and the sinner in- 
dulges it ; his empire is maintained by iniquity, and 
the siniieF commits it. 

Some do the will of men. They are entirely gov- 
erned by others ; they receive the law from tfie opin- 
ions, maxims, and manners of their companions, supe- 
riors, relations ; from the conversation received by 
tradition from their fathers ; from the example of the 
multitude. And by no better authorities than these, 
sure many influenced even in the concerns of religion \ 
"inxt ^* we ought to obey God rather than man ; and 
^^ to live the rest of our time in the flesh, not to die 
^ lusts of men, but to the will of God." 

Some do their own will. They are as regardless 
of the authority of God, as if they were persuaded 
that his being and perfections were a fable ; they five 
without him in the world, never asking when they en* 
gage in any course of action, whether it will please or 
oSend* hiih, whether he has forbidden or enjoined it ^ 

rSkmfi taSkm mkf\ tb» Urn ^ lUr o^tt^ i^dbatsom. 
3mA this hmff aiace die iafll deprwol aoniiifregulary 
ORWitliem mdiAf MkpLj from tl^ir duty 9iid bapfw 
fHH. Fork Si aa cteigeratts as it is crlmiMt to obey* 
nd^a gpide» Heooe Jo be abandoned Up ifts ipftxeniBei 
ttK^okm of as the greatest curse ; ^^ Se^ ( gpive tbe«i» 
^ up* unto their owb faeyrts' lust ; aifd they w^lklci 
^ ia thdr otni coun^ds*'' (t has been ssdd of chiK' 
dren, thtc tliey zre^va^oM i£ they haye thetf e^h* 
iviU ;\ awl the raasoii is» bec^nse they are not nnise' 
enough tQ dioos^ the fgoiqd aod reluse the evil. B«i6 
this is much more tnie of man ; if ^ has his owpf^ 
ixrill, he will bc^ ruiA himself ^ for a sianer i^ 
much more lik^y to make a fooUsh. choice than a. 
child ; a«d he whp iivanta grace» ha$ less understa^idii^ 
than he who wa;|ts years^ . » 

But tiie Christian mikes the will of Qod the fspn^ 
the only rule of his Ji£e } and every cpnsiderad<m iiv^ 
(duces him to say^ ^< Not my will, but tlune be dqne/?^ 
His authority over us is sui^me, and his rehMtlons- tOr 
us are numerous. ^He is^our Esther, aod we owe hisuf 
honour ; our Master^ and we owe himiear ; pfar Bim*« 
e&ctor^ and we owe him gratitude ;• our Ged^. an<t 
we owe lum obcdieoee^ devoticm; ,aH* we^ wq^ and aft 
we have ! Nor does our cMigation 9prin^ onlj^ firoaoi^ 
his dominion ovei^us} «nd hiS' cbiims tp us }: bui? 
fimn the very nature qf his^^dH, . whk^'is wise, am)^ 
righteous, and good. 

H&at we may not b6 ignorMt of his w81» he hafi* 
been jrfetsed to reveal k ; this revelation is contaift^d' 
ia the Scriptures oJF IVuth* Opening these, W6 find ' 
all -needful infi)raiatiqi^ ; they s&re a lamp utflo: Mf 

sft pfbidplids aiKl pftftxcfimr ndsi. Jhem ase ^fbaosu 
bed the ditties we owe to ovrwli^ lb ow AiB6#tflMS» 
fOm, aid to God ; the duties wbiich spring from «be\ 
tjvriooii oonnecddM and* condiSoiis a( ^ ? the diiti» 
ijf krag$ aod of servants ; the dn^iesi of jproepciity andr 
idvearsity* Viewing us as siixwrs, they shew unto tis^ 
the ^y of salvaiicai,%hd preach wpemmce towaids^ 
God, and faith towards our Loi^d Jes^ Chiiist. 

The man therefore ttet woiidd do th^ will c£ God,* 
walks by this rule. He repairs to t^e Scripture^ not 
fcr advice ttat law ; he enters the saiictuary of' revda^' 
tion, and bowing before die fively orad^ of Gdd hs, 
dries, ^< Lord, what wilt tifoir haVe nte to So ^^^ 
^ %»gak. Lord, for thy servant heareth.*^ Wbt ytmfff 
"inH observe that his concern wtdi this wiS of God lies 
1^ in knowing, but in iK>iiiro it. Afid' ihdeed if dkis 
be not in our desire and dei%n when We search for the; 
^B of Ood, we are not VktUff to be honest in our in^ 
Vestigations, or successful in, our a)it0tiipts. For, *^ he' 
^ that doth his wUl^ shall know of the doctrip^ wfaetlu- 
^witteofGod ;^ andwe^shaHkmni^ifw^lFollowofi. 
^ to know the Lord/^ Bift aib\i4»g it to be posstUe 
toobtaun the clettrest knowledge vaaicccaDpanied witir 
c^sedience, it would be useless ;* for ^' if ye know thcM.' 
^ fehings,^ happy are ye if ye 4o them */' y^a, it wouid' 
be even injuribos, by enfaandi^ m^ sin and a^rtvw** 
ting our condemnation ; for ^^ to hkn that kaoweth. 
<( to do good and doth it not, to him k k^ sin/* ^\ And. 
^ that servant whkjb knew his Lprd^s will, asid pee- 
^ PV^ not hlms^, neither, did accordlhg to his willj^^ 
^ sMl hs beaten ^tb many strioes. For mifio whooi^. 

4(M Th Fimij ofwr tmrZ {%g^ %xj^:- 

'*^ soevir miidi b given, of \am shall be mudi reqnfau 
^ ed ; and to whom men have committed muchy of 
^ htm w91 they ask the more/^ 

To be a Christian theii you miist act, and Uve, and 
jct and live a$<]rod would have you ; you must do the 
Wffl of odr Father which is in heavfeti. By two thihg^ 
you may know whether your obedience be such as 
WiB clasls you in the number of our Lord's disciples. 
For, first, their obedience is At^FECTioNAtE, arising' 
firom a desire to please and glorify God. Hence the 
cfeclaration of our Salviour, ** I call you not servants, 
' ** but friends.** This was hot to release tliem from 
ate obligation td cfbediehce, but to purify and elevate' 
^'"^e t>rinciple of it: And his o\ii^n language is in a sub- • 
^ .iA'dinate degree the experience of ill his followers ;' 
*• I delight to dd thy will, O God, yea thy law is with- 
in nly heart f" ** My m^at is to do the \rill of Him 
*< that sent me, and to finish his work." This is ev-* 
cry thing in thi* view of God ; he Would have us iii 
Jiis service to be liberal and generous ; he upholds us 
by his " ftie Spirit." He values not the forced sub- 
mission of the slave ; he disdsuns those actions in the 
performance of which the will revolts. His demand 
is, ** My son, give me thy heart ;" and when this is 
g^ven nothing else can he withhold ; then the eyes are.^ 
open to see, the ears to hear, the .lips to praise, the 
hands to communicate. And the man " presents his 
** body a living sacrifice, holy Ind acceptable to God, 
** which is his reasonable service." 

For, secondly, their obedience is impa&t.ial. I . 
speak here of their aim and ,theij: disposition.. Withal 
regard to these they have no reserve, no objections,' 

Sftm; xxi^.] the family of oUrlordi 46^ 

no esceptioas. Their concern extendi to ereiy thing 
whether great or little, whether easy or cfifficult, whe- 
ther pleasing or repul^ve ; they estecJto sdl his com- 
mandments concerning all things, to be right, and 
they hate every false way. The necessity of this #ttl 
readily appear* " For whosoever shall keep the whole 
<^ law, and yet offend in oiic point, he is guilty of all/' ' 
The reasoning by which this is established is solid ; 
fbr if a man voluntarily transgress one of the com- 
mands of God, why does he observe the rest ? ISt&t 
from a principle of obedience $ for this would lead 
him to observe jLhe command he transgresses, as well 
as those he observes, seeing they issue from the sattie 
authority, and are enforced by the same ^motives ; ^^ foir 
^' he that said. Do not commit adultery, said also, Do 
^< not kill : now if thou commit no adultery, yet if 
^' thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the 
"law/* He therefore obeys because the injunction 
happens to fall in with his humour, or reputation, of 
advantage. But if doing what we like, and refusing 
what we do not like, be obedience^* it is obedience to 
our own will, and not to the will of God ; and by 
such a submission we despise God in reality, while we 
profess to serve him ; we exclude his authority, and 
establish our own pleasure as the governing principle 
of our lives. This therefore annihilates the system of 
coqiposition, and all endeavours to balance virtues a- 
gainst vices, and to atone for the indulgence of sin by 
the performance of duty ; for unless you regard the 
will of God universally, whatever you do, springs not 
from a principle of religion, but from some other 

source ; for if you performed any one duty because 


46S The Familf rf tur Ufd. fSfift; xn\^^ 

God had c6minanded it, you would most' certainly 
practice every other for the same reason ; and if yov 
avcHded any one sin because God had forbidden it, 
you would unquestionably forsake every other on the 
same ground. It is in vain for you therefore to plead 
that you avoid that which is evil, unless you deave ta 
that which is good; It is in vain for you to visit the 
£itherless and widows in thieir affliction, if you do not 
keep' yourselves unspotted from the world.- It is tar 
vaipforyou tobe £dthful to your engs^eiheikts with^ 
your feUow cr^tures* if you are strangers to devotion ; 
this is to bemoral without piety ; or to pray and faev 
the word of God, alid dot provide things honest in 
the ^gfat of all niea ; this is to be pious without mbr* 
aKty. It Is in vain for yotf to assenlUe ' together in 
pubKc, if you never enter your dossets ;- of to be saiatS' 
in the house of God, if you are demons in your own. 
It is in vaia for you to listet^ to the gospel while k 
teadies you doctrines of ackboWledged importance,, 
if yoadonot learn by it to deny all ungodliness and' 
woridly lusts, ^nd to live soberly, ri^teously, and 
godly in the present world. In all these instances in 
which you aqppear to conform to the wilt of God, there 
It not cmeact of tcue obedience ; for true obedience 
^onsuks the will of God^ and this enjoins an atteti- 
lion to the things, you neglect, as nnich as to those 
which from other considerations you regard. And 
thus hiMBg d^scHbed - the characteir of hi? disdfAec, 
kt usy 

tin Survey their Privilege. Our Saviour coasid* 
ei$ them as his rehtipns f regards tl^em aa his kia-^ 


SiMt. zxiv/} Tbi Family rf m Lo^. jkSi 

dredj tfaey form one £unHy with himself ^^ He 
^* stretched forth his hand towards his disdples and 
^ said, 9ehold • my mothbr and my buethrbn 1 for 
^^ whosoever shall do the wiU of my Father which is 
^ in heaven, the same is my brothbr, and sisteh, 
^'and MOTHER.^^ 'As such I view them, as such I 
will behave towaxds them t theyf shall enjoy every adf 
vantage which can flow frqm connections so intimate. 
For our Lord does not speak ceremoniously ; his words 
are true and faithful. Let us see what ^e can find tQ 
embody the meaning of his expressions* 

As soon as we hear him claiming his disci^es as fall 
Idndred, we look. First, for family<-likf ness, and we 
have it. * ^ Whom he' did foreknow, them he also 
^ did ' predestinate to be conformed to the image of 
^ his Son^ that he mi^t be the first-born among miany 
^ brethren.'* « The first man is of the earth, earthy ; 
^ Ae second man is the Lord from heaven. As b the 
^ earthy, such are they also that are earthy ; and as 
is the heavenly, such are they ako that are heaven- 
ly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, 
^^ we shall also bear the image of the heoveidy." The 
Tesemfalance indeed is not complete in thb world, bst 
it is real ; it is sufficient to shew that they have a com- 
4ilon origin. One eadgpvenis them ; their indina- 
tions harmonise; the mind which was in him b 
also in them ; and as he was, so are they also in the 
world meek and lowly, tender and compassionate, pa* 
tient and forgiving, active and zealous. And the like* 
ness b incessantly glowing and becoming more and 
more visible ; beholding as in a glass the glory of 
fi the Lordy they are changed into the same inuige 

4fi& Tb0 Family of ^ur Ur4% [fifjR.a* ^XOfr 

" from glory to glory, ey^n as liy the Spirit erf the 
^ LorcL" And by and by it will be perfect ^nd en* 
tire, lacking nothings ^' When he shall appear we 
<' sh^ be Uk^ him, for we shall siee hiia as he is." 
Jhe liken essi will be extended to the whole man ; he 
<* shall chanj^ this yile body, th^t it may be £ashioQ* 
^^ ed like unto his glorious -body, according to the 
<< mighty working ^hereby he is ablQ even to subdue 
^' all things unto himself/' 

. By claiming them as his' l^ndred^ he, Seccmdly, con-?' 
&rs honor upon them. It is always g^rious to be^ 
k)ng to persons of iUusjtrio^s endowments, and who are 
the admiration of the age. It is in our favor to have 
it knowa xhsf, we are in t|)e number of their friends 
wd are prized by them ; it shews th^ir opinion cf us, 
and It is supposed that their esteem will not be wasted 
i^pon worthlessnes^. Their own connections have the 
greatest opportunities of improvement by them ; and 
often gratuitiously obtain credit for qualities which 
they never possess* Qy relative unioa we seem to 
have a right tq appropriate some of their talents and 
virtues ; some of tkeir lustre is un^^vords^ly reiected 
vpon those who stand nesur these polished bodies. Per** 
sons have been anxious to go even far back^ to datqi 
relation to some extraordinary charactei::^ How would 
some of you feel to be acknowledged as the kindred 
of tHe King who is called the fountadn of honour ^ 
This was the glory of James and loses and Simeon 
and Judas, who were the brethren of our Lord. Thb' 
was the .honour vouchsafed to Mary hb mother, and 
for which all generations shall call her blessed. Thmk 
of bdng the mother ^f One, wla\a was the image of 

Suu XXIV.} ^ The Fmrnfif (f tur L0r4. 4/6% 

thit iiiTisilde Qod, the first-born of every creature 
whom t|ie winds and seas obeyed, whom all (he an« 
gek in heaven are commanded to worship, the deliv-^ 
erer of millions irom the disgrace <^ ^in and the wrath 
to come. No wonder a certain woman while hearix^ 
him, unable to suppress her emotions, ^^ lifted up he^ 
<< voice and said nnto him, Blessed is the womb 
<* that bare thee and the paps which thou hast suck- 
^* ed." " But he said, yea rather, blessed are they 
^ that hear the word of God and keep it."* Does hdi 
then design to exclude his own relations from spirit- 
ual affinity with him } Or does he discountenzlike nat- 
ural afieAion and duty ? Par *from it \ but he would 
intimflte that we nefld not envy Mary ; we ourselves 
may become hb- kindred ^ in a iiobler sense; ^jSuc^H 
^^ honour have all th^ saints." '^ Behold my mothef 
^< and my brethren ! fdr whosoever shall do the will 
«* of my Fadier which |s in heaven, the same is my 
(c ;brotbeF, and sister, and mother." 

Thirdly, If they are his relations, he will love thein. 
What would you think of a man who h^d no regard for 
a BROTHER, a SISTER ? Where should we^think of look, 
ing for aflPedion, if not among those who are attached 
by ties of nattire, by habits bi ^arfy intercourse, by 
mtttual participations of every youthful enjoy itient, by 
the reciprocal performance of ^ thousand tender and 
endearing offices ! but conceive of whatever is^ attractive 
and Unding in the fond image of a mother ; one, whd 
after nameless pains and perils gave thee birth, nursed 
thee on her knees, fed thee at her breast, and through 
sleepless nights and anxious days watched over thy 
tender progress. • Bring before your *mi^^ a man, a^ • 

09f Tke Pamlj of rar Lord. [Ser. zxit* 

fpmm and seiwbiUtyy viewing die pifture of a laother ^ 

.mm ■ 

^ Faithful remembrancer of one so dear,** 

« ». • ■ ' - ■ • > 

recalUi^ maternal soules, and the dreas in which with 
blessyings she dismissed him tQ school, forgetting a thou- 
sand o^her things^ h^t remembering her ^* nightly visits/^ 
her '^ mormng b(Hinti«9^'' her ^ Qon^tanit flow of love thait 
f ' knew xxQ £)U T' Biit no mother was ever so dear to an 
admiring child, as hia disdples ape tq the Savipur. Eve** 
ry thing is defedive in holding forth his love ; never 
was love so tender, never was iQve so tried} it was^ 
stironger than death; it passeth knowledge. S^e if 
when he was upon e>^tli. His little family with which 
be was surrounded, was a fair specimen of hb people 
in all ages. How kindly he bore with their infirmir 
ties! ^th what gentleness he reproved theml vntk 
what eagerness he encouraged them 1 with what free* 
dom he unbosoi%ed himself, to them ! ^ And loving 
** his own who were in the world, he loved them un* 
*^ to the end,? aifd gave proof of it by washing their 
feet, and then dying for them, by, which he proclaini'* 
ed, that he considered nothing too IpF for hfm to dq^ 
nothing toq paififul fo^r him to suffer for tl^ 9akes« 

Fourthly, Sipce l^e declares them to be his rda» 
tions, he will provide for them- *Mf 4ny provide luit 
^^for his own, and ^pppally for those of his .own 
<' house, he hath denied the faith, and is^ worse thai^ 
^^ an infidel." And will he incur a reproach whk^ 
he so severely condemns ? It was well for -the patriajpch 
^nd his sons, in the famine which raged all oyer the 
country, that they had one so nearly allied to tli^em, 
inrjio reigne^ oyer the land of Egypt^ ^^ had the 

iaarxmvj Tbt Family if wr Lord. 4fit 


commsBd itf its reiowces; ^Tfaeii sent Joseph Tibd 
^^ called his fiaither Jacob to him and all his Idndred,^ 
^* three score and fifteen souls/' and the land of Go-' 
dien yielded them supplies. Christians; you have a 
rdbtioh who is Lord of all: r ^ the earth is his, and 
<<the fufitiess thereof See those who rise in the 
state ; they soon draw tlmr connexions' after them; 
And many tvMA may arise from this' among, men. 
Sinecures may be multiplied^ places may be formed 
iif order to be fill^, and t\xt state may be burdened 
to mauiltain the friends of those who are in poWer, 
whik offites may be disposed of not according to 
qualificatibn but affinity* But Jesus Christ injuires' 
none by the elevation of his kindred ; and he prepares 
them sJl for the stations they occupy. And surely if 
they are not all exalted, he will suffer none of them to 
famish. ^ O fear the Lord, yd his sadnts $ fOr there is 
<« no want to them that fear him. The libiis do lack 
^ and sufier hunger, but they that seek the Lord shall 
•• not want any good thing." You may rejoice in afr 
the glory and empire to which he is advanced ; you' 
aire interested in it ; it is for yeu, *^ He is made head 
" over ali things unto his body the Church.** " Ife 
^ has power given him over all flesh, that he should 
give eternal life to as many as the Father hath given 
him." And not satisfied with hjs own j)ersonal dig. 
mty, he wishes his friends to sit with him upon his 
throne ; and thb is hb language, ^^ Father, I will that 
^ those which thou hast given me be with me where I 
^ am, io behold my ^ory.** " And the glory which' 
^ thou gavest me I have given them y that- they may 
^ be one, even as we are one«^" 

Ag^ } 4Me h» regards them as hk brnthmsr^ Us 
ftl^ters, Ua viofehtar^ ke will keep up an loteDOOtae 
with them. He will correspond with them by nieaas 
c| his WQrd^ wd many at predous e^stle wi& thejr re* 
Cfive from l|iiii» unfidding the sentiments q£ his heart, 
and teUing them ^here he now is^ and what he is pre- 
psuipg for theai* He will also come to see (faem^ he 
will peculiarly visit them in troul^^le ; he is a ^^ Fiiend 
^^bom for adversity." ^^ And better Is a neighbour 
*^ thiA isnear, than a brother that is far off." ^* When 
^^ thfHi passest throt^h the waters I. will be with thee^ , 
'^\ ^d thrpttgh the floods they shall not overflow thee : \ 
<< Vfhen thou passest through the fire thou shalt not be 
^* burned, neither. shall the flames kindle upon th^£r«" 

. FinaUy, he will defend them. When Moses went 
forth and *' saw one of hi^ brethren su&r wrong, he 
<< defended him, and- avenged hjmthat was opprefs^ed, 
^\ aUid smote the E^yptian.'^ We see how Esther ex- 
erted hersdf to preserve from the malice of Haman 
her nation and her uncle's house ;* ** How can I endure 
*^ to see the destruAion of my kindred." And will 
the Saviour be an unconcerned speftator of the dan- 
gers of his people \ Let their enemies beware ; in op- 
posing them they persecute him j he that toucheth 
them, touchifig the apple of his eye. l^o weapon 
formed against them shall prosper. Their Redeemer 
is mighty, and he will plead their cause. •* Happy art 
"thou, O Israel? who is like unto thee, O people sa- 
'^ ved by the Lord, the shield of thy help, and who is 
^ die sword of thine excellency ! aad tfaiiie enemies 
. ■« jshall be found fiars unto- thee, and diou' shsdt tread 
^ upon their high places.'^ 

•» . . « 

' FVem tlie eiplanatiorf of the words whkk has been 

given, we derive four interesting reflectkms f with 

whidi we sh:^ amdxtdfi: 

The !ll^t leads us to admif'e the ^ce and conde* 
icension of our Lord JesKs Christ. When we look 
into the worid^ we find those of rank and consequence 
detaching themselves as much as |»6i98ible from tfaoise 
* below them ; they adre ashamed to be too familiat with 
'thrir inferiors, thougff the inferibrity consists in things 
which possess verf little, if any, real afnd intrin^ical 
excellency. Why should a man tflii!ik me beneath 
•him, because he has a greater abundance of ^^ thick 
** day ?•* Is wealth dignity ? ^ Silvttr and gold have 
•*^ I none," says Peter ; so then 2t* nian may be an in- 
spired apostle and able to work miracles, atnd be pbok*. 
^^ Foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have 
^^ nests, while the Son of man hath AM where to lay 
^^ his head,'' says our Saviour ; a person therefore tttay 
be the brightness of the Father^s ^bry, itid the ex- 
pfess image of his person ; and be destitute of world- 
ly possessions. Why should a mait swell as he passes 
by me, because he wears a title ? 

<^ Pigmies are Pig^mies still, though perch'd on Alps ! 
" And Pyramids are Pyramids in vales.^' 


Take a Prince ; he has only five senses, he is made of 

dust, and is returning to it agaia, and in that very 

day his thoughts perish. See those who springing 

from obscurity have soared high in worldly success ; 

. how unwilling are they to be found in company with 

their kindred who remain in indigence ! how . eager 

are they to oonceal the relation ! But here is a subject 

of wonder, which may well lead us to exclaim, ^* Lord, 

M M m 

^ what is mto tliat thou an miiMlfitl of hitn, or tiw 
^ 80n of man dnt tfaou vutteBt him ?*' See him that 
has all power in hesiven aod^ ia earthy the King of 
kings and Lord' of Lords^ stooping from his gtorious 
majesty, lookilig to^hiin that is poor, seardung for faia 
connections who dwell in houses of chy; and desireue 
of publishing the relation. See him ^' stretching Ibrtk 
^Vhis hand towards his disk%)les/' and saying ^ B*» 
*^ lickl my mother and my brethren i For whosoever 
^ shaH do the will of my Father wbieh is in h^aVen, 
^ the same i> n^y brother and si£(ter, and mother.^* 

Th6 Second remark leads us to contemplate the iiv* 
demnities and advantages of religioxi. It is' readily ac- 
knowledged, that in following the Son of God, we 
must deny ourselves and take up our cross j a success- 
ion of painful services will be required of us ; various 
sacrifices are indispensable. ^^ But verily there is a 
•• reward ft)r the righteous." Godliness is profitable 
^ unto all things, having p'ronuse of the life that now 
*• is, and of that which: is to come.'* ' ** Then' Peter 
^ said, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee. And 
** He said unto them. Verily I say unto youi there is 
•* no man that hath left house, or parents, or bretb- 
^ ren, or wife, or children, for the Kingdom of God a 
^ sake, who shall not receive manifold more in this 
•< present time, and in the world to come life everlast- 
** ing.'* It is no ieasy thing to pursue the will of God 
inflexibly to the end ; the performance of it in ma- 
ny cases will deprive us of friends, create us enemies, 
and draw upon us reproach. But it wjU never suffer 
us *to repent of our engagement ; it requires of u$ 
nothmg mean ; it withholds from iis nothing glori- 

9uu aucnr.] Tbe Family of^imr Lord 473 

eos. Is dfarine audience a priviledg^ ? TUis is ccmneict- 
ed with obedience. <^ QoA heurelh not sint&ers ; but 
^ if a aian be a wondiipper of God and <ioth his witi,' 
^liimhe heareth.*' Is an assurance of immcnrtality a 
privil^e ? This, is connected xirith obedience. *^ The 
^ world passe th away and the lusts thereof, but he that 
^ dotth the will of God abideth for ever/ Is a un- 
ion with the family of Jesus Christ a privilege ? This 
is conneuted with obedience. '^ Behold my moth-^ 
^^ er . and my brethren ! For whosoever shall 4o the 
^* wUl of my Father which is in heaven,, the saqie ia 
^* my brother, and sister, and mother." 

The Third remark leads us to observe the holiness 
of the Gospel^ Of this we are perpetually reminded* 
IjL is insured by Us promises as well as by its commands^ 
by its privileges as' well as by its duties. Its blessingSi 
however free, are only ja be enjoyed in a course of. 
obedience. The family of lesus is like heaven ; " the. 
" unrighteous'' are excluded. " This is thej law of 
'^ the house ; upon the top of the mountain the wholQ. 
'^ limit thereof round about shall be most holy* Be* 
** hold this is the law of the hpuse." When he waa 
upon earth he did not seek to establish an indiscrimi«« 
nate empire, or to draw a large heterogeneous mass 
after him ; his fan was in his hand ; by the applica^ 
tion of various tests he selected those who followed 
him from principle and inclination, and drove back the 
cowardly, the mercenary, the false-hearted. What !. 
can the brethren of Jesus. Christ be earthly, sensual, 
devilish ? ** He that is joined to the Lord is of one 
*^ spirit.'* And " K any man have not the Spirit of 
^ Christ, he is none of his/*" And thereforerthey who 

4? 6 The Family cf $ur Lord. {Bnu jlxiv^ 

discharge you from bbedience, and'prombe yoq lecuH!' 
ty, belie every word of the BiUe, apd oppose iJire v]e«^ 
ry design of tettgton, whkh is by laiictific^tion €p aodttw 
ilate man to tke image of Go4> If ther^MH^ y^u mlr^ 
ue the connf^ction^ and are desirous <if entedng* thb^ 
£imiiy,'retpember t We b only one wayof;iocess lo' 
ir. Ik) not imagine yon can alude the delermitovti^at' 
of our Savioi^r^ and enjoy the prii^^ge withoat tks. 
ebaracter of his cRsdples. But if this be the piAfm^ 
of adnnssion, it stands open to ^. I^ your aliauoe 
depend upon genius, literature, affluetfce, or office, 
many of you must despwr. But' his £imily is not of 
this world. From the hope of the Qos|)el none are 
excluded, but those who wic||^edly exclude themselves. 
** Therefore as He who hath csded you is holy, so be 
^^ ye holy in 9U manner of conyersadon t^^ and pray 
with David, '^ Teach me to dp thy will, for thou art 
^C'fDy ^od ; thy Sf^it is goo4 ; lead me into the' 
f* land of «i>ngfat|ies$,'' and th^n you may be assured 
jDf yonrincluston^ whatever be your talents» whatever 
be your circumstances. For whosi/EYSbl shall do the 
f will of my Father which is in heaven^ the same is 
f my brother, and sister anfl mother.'' 

llie Fourth refleaion le^ tts tq enforce upon 
(Christisns th^ duty d^dved from their alliance. Re- 
^mber that you are ^^ no. more strangers aikd for- 
^ eigners, but foUowHJtizens with the sa^pts^ and of 
^ THE nousxHo^D OF GOD.'' Walk worthy of the vo» 
cation wherewith you are called* Dbiu^^hii you^s^ve^ 
as the rehclons of the Lord of life and glory* Let 
brotherly love cteitinue. Let there b^^ no strife \i^ 
tween you and your fellow Christians, for yoy are 


§iji. fXivO Tie I^mi^ rf m Ipr^ mm, 

Ju^iHtoep. I)o not envy the world, it M % ngfoui^ 
to your fiumly i yw are^pbce^ ia a bi^q: order thsot 
tluqr r you liaye better titles, honouia, ridM,. pkn. 
ur«& RejiHcp aod glory m Ux^ connection ^ under i|r 
senile of yo^ unworthiness, j^t the thought of it x^ 
vtve you; under th? repioach of die world, let die 
tkottj^ of it animate you } left theffi viUify, kt them, 
cait out youK name as evil ; He is yours and you art , 
his, and. you are pwctous in his sight. And, finally^ 
let it i^eondle you to death : cherish the ple^slqg, the. 
fkmiliar' notion of it, which the words of your iiOr4 
9U]^« It is onIy:ooi^p home, iind. Home 

^ Is the ]o^?d retreat of peace and plefity ; 
^ Where supporting and supported* 
•< PoKshfid Moods aiKid^ r^fauioos 
«« Meet and mingle into bliss."* 

Such is an e^hly residence. What is heaven ? Mfhat 
will our Father^s house be, where all. the dear xaofttu 
)>ers of the family will 1^ assembled together ? Why 
do you wish to be detained ftom Rpus ? How iranat. 
ural to long to be always strangers and pilgrims upoqr 
earth ! How unaccountable is the av^rrion you expresi 
to a messenger, which cQfnes only ^'tp gather yott 
^ uilto your own people V^ If persons lo¥(^ not to 
travel, surely one thing would reeontile them to it^ 
the prosped of home; especiaUy if their deansk 
friend was gone before, and had pfomised to be tlier» 
to receive him. And if the thought of leaving soma 
few behind pained them, they would \^ relietred from 
much o£ the cSstress, if they knew that thsse frienda 
would soon, very soon Mow, and tha^f prbbaUy they 


Tiefkmfy tf iur Lord. ' [Sir: xxhr/ 


miff psai lipon the rokd the vehicle destined to bring' 

diein. Christians ! what you have found most like 

iKMQDe below has been the sanduary. There you held 

ioiftmunion with your heavenly Father, and embra* 

€ad your friends and col^y||(>anions in his presence, and 

ibr^^^ their sakes*' you said, *^ Peace be within thee.'' 

There :you' longed to appear, and you found it good* 

to be there. : But as the blessedness was imperfed, m 

it was -transient You blended with few, and soon 
aepaQted to mix with others very differently minded*. 

But when you ascend and enter your Father's house 

above, you will never more go out ; you will join thf 

general assembly, and ^^ be for ever with the Lord/' 

^ Wherefore comfort one another with these words." 

* » * 

«•» •^l^ *■ 

r ■• 






THE 5b;dford union, 



^* T2 

*- . 

»» ^ ». • 

.•l • * 

• « 

/ . 

» • 

, I 


THE Author of the annexed Sermon, is not a Member of 
the Association before whom it was delivered* But his coa* 
lition is prevented by distance only. Were he contiguously 
situated, he should esteem co-operation his duty and his priv- 
ilege : for nothing can be more consistent with his convic- 
tionsy than the importance of the object ; or more congen* 
ial to his feelings, than the liberality of die plan, by which this 
union is distinguished. Hence, being invited to preach at one 
of its meetings, he most readily complied. 

But he acknowledges he did not consent to pubR^h so wil- 
lingly, notwithstanding die earnest and unanimous request of 
his christian friends, and his brethren in the ministry. He 
was aware of some considerable diflerence between the claims 
-of a Sermon preached and a Sermon published. In the for- 
mer, a freedom occasionally bordering on colloquial, may be 
readily allowed^ and even applauded : while, the same com- 
mendation or even apology will not be conceded in the latten 

It is a very desirable, but not a very easy thing to give the 
effect of novelty to well-£nown and familiar truth. Some lit- 
tle sacrifices of refinement, even fastidious criticism would 
surely tolerate, to excite in the mass of hearers that initreH 
which will secure attention and aid recollection. What by 
its dullness composes the mind; what by its smoothness 
slides o£F from it ; what by its subtilty evaporates in the mere 
act of hearing will do little good. Something must strike 
and penetrate, and remain : something must be taken away, 
which the individual will think (A^hen alone, and talk of 
when in company. The wordg ojthe wisct says Solomon, 
are as goads and a* nails fastened ty the masters of assemblies. 
Nothing if more to be gjftrded against than a tame unim- 

frtsuvt coh-cctsiess^ that will su^ect a jpirud^r to the relate . 
tion of QiuQtilim, '^ His greatest excdkncjr is^-nduit he has 
iio£^; aodhugreaMtfaidtisF^-Hhathehassoexcdlaiiey^.'' 

It was the wish of those who by their eanAUtiaflfpoftiinitf, 
ha^ire rendered Aeinselvea responsible to die public Cor Ais 
.{publication, that the discourae.shoiiU retaim the boUasis and - 
vivacitj of popular and free addresi* i^' be pra w nfccd as it 
W4|s delivered^ . This the aiidior has be w enabled to do .-par- - the,<seracuMi was secured in abort hand« 

The author hopes the sermon will appeat to possess otae 
claim — A bean, much tn ih9 uau'^ modern fircfewiafu^^JkxA . 
frofli^.lett6K9 .h^ received after ihe delivety^ the .pcieacher had 
the jLftiafaptioa iQ ^ndy that it hi^ displeasedi a class of Naar- * 
erst whot* however evangelical a minister'a doctrine 'nurjr be^ 
will be siine Ap-ccmdemn hiai lis aoen as. ever he attempts to 
advance princij^es from the creed into the conscience and to 
hr^l^g^wn'ii^igUm from specafaitioa to praciicef A sertnon 
must be wanting in fitness or applicatton^ that awaktes ho feel* 
ings in the auditor eitlpex agftinst the preacher or agaiwt him^ 
self. Happy mtt the}r who corns totheiiouse of God> and * 
return fcoin the spirit .^ of EUihu and of Bavid^ TAai . 
which Jmcc not teach fh^u mr .* If I h0Pf dotffi iaigukifp J, 
vM dQ ^no more^ . Scqr^ m^ Qq4» wd km(fUf ^m^Mmtt^i 
try me mi inew my t^^ught^ j ^fnd $fe if. there ibe anjf 
ed VHty in mep and leadn^ in the "wqy of Iffe everhstinf^. 
Aipen* . . • . 

As the ibUowing discourse aie^ fall into the han^ls of some 
who maf dfSBi^e Additional infinmadon concerning the.Uaioai 
it may be eligible to insert a brief accpunt, published on a 
former ocoasioni and famished on its Jbehalf by the Secreta-^ 
ry to the Society^ die Qev.' Samuel Billyurdt of Bedford. 

^ This fkeligiotts Association was forced at Bedford Oct* 
91, 11r9/, under the title of TftE Union or Christians. 

*^ In common with varl(4|b BeIjg;ious Associations in this 
country, it has solely for its object the advanceipent of Chris ; 
ti'anity. It endeavours to attain ibis end, by the means ot 

▲DTXmf f tKHKlIt* * tv 

)liftaMmg^ toki the ctrcidation of pUdn praelicaS tracts oirre- 
liga0Q8. subjoc^ i rad by ^erishiag, among fiiouB people o^ 
differatdenanMa^as, tbat ttutiial aftetioa wlik^ b pow- 
«Bfu% iajpukaled ty. the gospdi of our LarilJesiis GfariiU' 

fMt ^ffert, honrerer, from most Religious Associations la 
trAla retpect«-4hait it excludes from co-operation in its mea-* 
siire%< DO person, of irkat denomination soever, who professes 
to Tceeiye die BiUe as the revealed Will ^f Ood, and agteet' 
wikk the members in his views of such doctrines as they be- 
lieve to be eeaential to salvationy if his-moral and religious 
icoB(|lict proves the sinceritjr of hia profession* 

^ The MinisCers and pAvate Christians who thus associate^ 
Aeiiber acnauttce nor conceals those sentiments in which they 
differ oae from another ; biH they limit their united meas«» 
ures to die puifoae of promoting the knowledge and th^ prae* 
ticfil^ifi^t^of .tfe)se important doctrines in which theyhe^M* 
ly «9Pee.»--Such are-^The proper Deity of the Son and of the 
Spirit of God ; with the necessity of atAneoient for ain by 
the aacrifice of Christ, and of holiness in heart and life thro* 
the operatioa of the Holy Ghost lor ^e Salvation of Man* 

^ Hence it is evident, that UtAs Christian Virion is neither 
designed to advance the interest of any sect or party of relig- 
ious people in ptfrticulai^ nor to oppose aiqr thing among those 
who agfee in the belief ef the doctiinee that have been speci* 
fiedr They avoid accOrdingljj^ to interfere with congrega- 
tions to whom these truths are statedly preached ; and they 
prefer those «eattonfti|^ imparting rdigioua inst)hicdons, wfaeit 
there wotid not, otherwise, be any public VMrship- in die vi* 
cinity^ * tF^ 

'^ With the propagatioi^ or the support of any syatem of pot* 
iticSy ihp Union of Christians has nothing to do* Theii^uno^ 
tions of the sacred Scriptures, to ^^ pray for Kings and for dl 
who are in authority, that we may live (|uietly and peaceably^ 
in all godliness and honesty,'' is conscientiously fulfilled by its 
members. If any of them should be found to teach or practice 
the coQtrary, he would be excluded from further connexion 


^ GonmCeBtly mik sudi principles and conduct, tliejr I 
Ullietto been fiivoared with the approbation of fwous and 
nevoknt peraonft^'of every denomination, in dieir own neigh 
borfaood $ and even with die friendly assistance of others ii 
more distant situations. It is also incumbent upon diem to 
acknowledgCt with gratitude and humility, that it has plea^ 
sed God to prosper their endeavors to serve Him. Many 
profligate sinners have been reclaimed; and, especially a* 
mongdie poor, an increasing attention to the knowledge and 
the practice of the Qospel has been excited.^ 



• • 


» '* 


f AM GLOMmXD tn fkBM^-»JohO| xvti- 10. 

WHO in this congregation lives without prayer ?— * 
This is a question which it is impossible for your 
prtacher to determine* But, in so large an assembly, 
there are probably some, if not many of this unhappy 
description : and if he knew where you were sitting, 
he. would look towards you not with anger, but with 
pity, and say — ** My dear hearers^'*— You may be re* 
spectable in your character : you may be carressed by 
your connections ; you may be prosperous in your se- 
cular concerns — but you are living without Crod in 
the world i you are strangers to your duty, your hon« 
or, your happiness ; you are wholly unlike Him whom 
as Christians we profess to resemble, and who is per- 
petually calling upon us to foUow his example/' 

—If you can live without prayer, He could not* 
!f Ja the days of his flesh he o£Eered up prayers and 

The Savkur GhriJUd 

♦ lii' f»<' 

!oiK9^ wifek 8ir(nig crying and tears uiita ktm 
that was able to save him from death, and was heard 
in that he feared.^ 


In the sacred history w^ often read of his praying ; 
but the Holy Ghost has more fully recorded and signal- 
ized the prayer contained in the chapter before us. It 
Was delivered in the open suf just as he ^as going to 
suflbr. He had left th« conmiunion chamber: and 
was approaching the garden^ of Gethsen^ane. He pau- 
sed near Cedrop. The bum of the adjoining metrop- 
db was diminished* It was towards midnight. The 
mocm was walkmg in br^htness ; it was at ftilL He 
was now to take an affecticmate farewell of his imme- 
diate disciples, who stood around him weeping. He 
considered them as the depositories of his truth, and 
the representatives of his church in all ages ;« and 
^^ lifting up his eyes to heaven'' he commends thenr 
to the Messing of his Father, and our Father, his God, 
and pur God. And bdibld the principal argument oa 
which his intercesdon rests. ^^ AH mine are thine, aitd 
thine are mine, and I am <glorified in them/' ^ What- 
ever tt'done for my peofde is done for mb. It wiK 
advance my honor." I am gloripisd in them* . 

Let us endeavour to exemplify the truth of this 
sentiment, and shew, in Ax ways, how' Ghiiist is 


I. He is glorified in them by the dbrivation of 


What a change do we annually witness in nature. 
After a few months of wintery dreariness and deso- 
lation, the enlivening spring returns. The ground is 
decked in green. The flowers appear oh the earth. 
The trees assume their foliage. The leaves guard the 

I^iida; the- btOBSonn are.racaeded by frvb^ a&d «be 
fEroU svdis> colwSy and m^Snures against the*pei&et 
day. All tms is owing to the influence ^r the sun ; 
an(l~the svn i» glprified in our fields aoid girdfins^ 
An architect r^ars M e4ifiw« It u ^idnilrdd for itjl 
beauty, or itf graodeur by aU who inspect k.- . But tbo 
pr^ belongs to the bi«lder, not to the building ; wd 
the workman is glorified m the wotkir A beneiiictQf 
takes a youth in all the nidenitps of ignoranoe*' Ht 
awakens and caJitivaRieai hia powers^ . He adof ns him 
with sGieJo^ee; be forms, him into chasacter ; and aends^ 
Inm forth to serve ^his ganeratien ; and^-Hthe tutor ia 
glori£|ed in the {Wfffl^ The Saviom:. of- sinners* h thf 
maker of all things j ^< all tUngs MTere^madie by hftm» 
fU)d without hhn was not any thing made that was 
made." And he is gloiified \tk aU» Impre9siQn& of « his 
poweft wisdom^ and goodness are left, . upon the 
largest and the least: «' All. hit works praiese 1dm.'' 
And is he lets ^kmfied in the hew creation than in 
the tAAl Has he iidt said^ -^Behokl I create Atw 
heawne and a new earth ; tediiie fonner shall not be 
irem^flQbered nm come into mind?'' If belieirers were 
once in darkness, andHB opened the eyes of their under- 
standing : if they were once in the bondage of ccMrrup- 
tiouy and He made them free : if they weM once 
degraded and perishing in all the rivna of th? fall^ and 
He made them an eternal excelieacy^ the joy of many 
generations — it undeniably follows that he is glorified 
in them. Hence he said, *< This people have! farmed 
for. myself, they shall shew forth my praise. Th^y 
shall be called trees of righteousness, the planting of 
*the Lord that he may be glorified^ I %yill place' ^xix 
tion in Jacob fpr Israel my glory*" 


4 The SawMir Gkri^ 

All the, subjects of ^i4|e f^t are tniuk MosiUe of 
this truth. In his name they rejoice, hi his rights 
eousness they are exalted. They know that by hb 
stripes they are healjed. They know that from his 
fullness they receive grace for grace. And as Joab, 
when Rabbah was ready to fall, sends to David hb 
sovereign to assume the honor, ^* least/' says he, *' ^e 
city be taken sind be called aft^t my name ;** so the 
christian is concerned that his Lord and Saviour should 
tirear the glory of all his attainments and achievements. 
•* If I have performed a duty properly. He enabled me 
to discharge it. If I have borne a trial becomingly. 
He enabled me to endure it. If I have vancluished an 
enemy. He enabled me to overcome it. We are more 
than conquerors through him that loved us. Not unto 
us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy tiame give 
glory, for thy mercy and for thy truth^s sake. Unto 
him that loved us, and hashed us from our sins in his ' 
own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto 
God and to his Fllther be glory and dominion for ever 
and ever. Amen.** 

Here it may be proper to observe, that as Christians 
you should never deny what he has done for your 
souls. Though you "ought to be humble, yoii equally 
ought to be thankful : but you cannot thank him for a 
blessing he has never conferred, or a work he has nev. 
er accomplished.— ^And why should you be unwilling 
to acknowledge it ? If you can say, Whereas' I was once 
blind I now see : and whereas, I was once dead in tres* 
passes and sins I am now walidng in newness of life-—* 
You are not praising the subject, but the author ; and 
He is glorified in you. 

IL He is glorified m thsir holt wAtK. 


in its fnple. § 

Dr. Watts has veil observed*^ 

Thus shall we hest proclaim abroadi • 
The honors of our Saviour God ; 
When the salvatbn reigna within, 
And grace subdues the power of sin* 

These lines refer to the address of Paul to Titus ; 
^* Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own mas- 
ters, and to please them well iii all things ; not an- 
swering again ; not purloining, but shewing all good 
fidelity ; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our 
Saviour in all things/' I wish ypu to notice this address 
the more, because of the character adduced* It is ob- 
servable that in the illustration of his subject, the 
^postle does not bring forward a prince, or a nobleman, ^\ 
He does not mention eyen a masters—but a servant* 
Hqw easily and commonly men deceive themselves! 
t'lHBlw many are. ready to ifnagine, that ^hey should do 
•wonders if they were placed in higher stations, or were 
possessed of greater talents ! But they forget, that, h^ 
who is nofr faithful in little will never be fjf^ithful in 
Qiiich— -4;hat every individual, however situated or en^ 
do5;i(^d, has some influence — that even a servant may 
roll away reproach, and recommend the gospel by its 
amiable and moral operation in social life— even a ser^^ 
vant may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour ** in 
all things,*' ^ 

Upon the sa^ne principle speaks the apostle Peter. 

,He supposes a c^se by no means an unusud one. The 

vife is. called, by divine.- grace while the husband rQ- 

mains uaQopvcarted* ^^ paturatly feels a conce^^ fqr 

his salvation. Her first endeavour is to billag him un- 

« der those iQstniijjions whi^^ have prpved useful to her- 

• The SawMir Gbr^d 

])ltce in wlAA lie lives. If I had such chaneters t^ 
>«ddce98, 1 would saj-^Bf your lue^uis the way of trutik 

, is evil ^pekeu of» and the worthy name hlasphemed by 

wiAdh you are caUed. You perplex the weak and ymi 
4i9^rts$ the strong. X^n strike your preachers dumb. 
Yott justify and harden the wicked in their iniquity;, 
^u lead many to think that all religion b but a sys- 
'* tem of hypocrby. The destcuction of thousands wi9 
Ufi at your door. They would long ago huve attended 
die gospel, but they see that you are not the better for 
your bmsted doctrines and privileges* Your servants 
and children see in you the same pride and passion a* 
in others : and witness the same ntixture of fivtaif 
prayers and quariiels* ITour neighbors see that jdn 
are aa hard-hearted and as close-fisted as any around 
you ; and that while you ajre taMn^ c^ suiether wiArld^ 
you are keeping a kee^ look out after this, and as^ 
largely endowed with what an old divine call^ ^ sav- 
ing knowledge." Q that we couM exclude you froiiai 
.our assemblies— or, as Qod may j^ve you repentani^e, 
^ O that you had invisible bo(fies, and could enter and 

^ withdraw unseen, that no one might ever imagine 

« . you had the least connection with us.** 

\ " ni. He is glorified in them, by ths cHEsaFpLKBs^ 


All men seek happiness ; and if they perceive that 
1 you find, what they see^^ after in vain ; though they 

1* turn from pleasure to wealth, from wealth to fan^"^ 

t from fame to friendship^ from friendship to science-— 

this is likely to ^waken their attention, to conciliate 
I their regard, s^id td induce them to take hold of the 

sldrt of him that is a Jew, saying, we will go ^ith yott> 
ibr we have hear4 that Crod is ^th you. 



, It bcottMBioiily s«pp096d that «tKgbn h m jQOfiriv 
mA VMhfidixAf thing j th%t it prosoribes a coniiMit 
&8t } tJiat k requires us t6 walk in a way wi^di^ tibo^- 
it may end in everlasting life» is full of tlionis and bnh 
an, and toads and scorjAens, Such a proqiect inust- 
nlkcuralfy and unavoidably terrify and disgust. AiJNt 
hence this prejudice will be found tt>, be as injurious^ 
IB it is commoav For present feeliugs ate the most 
powerful. .The constitittion of man is such that he 
i9ttst hafve present gratiication. He h thirsty, and 
inust drtnk : and if there be no fountain near, he will 
kneel down to the puddle. Now, would you oonfirtti 
a prejudice so general and po fatal as this, by long de^ 
meure fi^es i by sighs and groans as if you were it a 
funeral ; by your insensibility tfy the beaiuties of na- 
ture, and indi&rence to the bounties of Providence ; 
by indulj^g those peiQvish fretful tempers which make 
you a emUnual droning in a raiftf day ; by your sink* 
ing in the day of adversity, and drawing . upon youi^ 
self the reflection of many an JPiphaz, ^< Behold thou 
hast instructed many, and thou hast strengthened the 
weak hands i . thy words have upfaoldea him that wa& 
fUling, and thou hast strengthened the feebly knees-^ 
but now it is come upon thee, and thou fsuqtest ^ it 
toucheth thee, and thou art troubled. Is not thi& thy 
fear, thy confidence, thy hope, and the uprightness of 
thy way ?" Would you lead people to think that your 
master is a tyrant, and his service bondage ? Would 
you appear to be less happy in serving the Lord thao 
in serving sin ? Would you shew that ip exchanging 
the world for the church, you fell from liberty into a 
dungeon, and left a fruitful field for a barren land, or a 
wilderness of drought f It must needs be that o&nces 

lO The SavtoHr Gkrified 

come } but woe to that man by whom the offeilce 
Cometh ! Be alisre my faret{irea'to your* duty, .if. not 
fo your ptivikges.: and render your reli^on as attrac- 
tive as it is impottafit.. 

I go back to the primiti;ire diristians — They learned 
in whatsoever state they were therewith to be content* 
In every thing tUey gave thanks. If sorrowful they 
were always rejoicifig. They did not. think it neces- 
sary to wade tlurough a sea of soul trotible to, ' author- 
ise :them to befievd on the. Lord JesfUs Christ. They 
did^noi: suffer a sense of their, unworthiness and imper- 
fections, thoiigh it kept them huml^, to make them 
miserable oc to deprive the^n' of hope« They did not 
torment themselves about futurity, but cast all thdr 
care cm one who careA for them. They did not view 
death as the king of terrors, but as their deliverer and 
thdlr fiieiid. * The day of judgement did not. keep 
them aghast } they waited for it and loved his appear- 
ing. Here I see every thing as it ought to. be. After 
this I turn to modem professors, and her<e I behold a 
difference which can only be accounted for on one of 
these two principles : either that Christianity is change 
edmnce ; or, we do not understand it» and receive it 
as a right. The former solution is inadmissible. Je- 
sus Christ is the same yesterday, to-day and for ever* 
There is the same efficacy in his blood. There is the 
same power in his arm. There is the same love i^n his 
heart. The promises «re the same. The throne of 
grace is the same« Heaven is the same. Providence 
is the same.— -^No christians ; the difference is to be 
sought, not in the system but in yourselves. Serious- 
ly therefore examine your experience. Pray that you 
may.know .what is the hope of your calling, and what 

in bh People i 11 

b the glorf of the riches 6£ his inheritance in t)ie s^nts* 
Be concerned to face a reproaching world and with 
boldness to tell them. 

The men of grace have found 

Glor^ begun lielow. 
And heavenly fruits on earthly ground^' 

Fron) faith and hope >viil grow — 

Shew that n6 danger can terrify yoii ;-tl)at ho bss 
can impoverish you. Shew that if the reed fails, the 
rock remains ; if the cisterjl be dried up, the fQuntaani 
of living water fiows on« Say with the church, '^ Al- 
though the fig tree shall not blossotn, neither shall 
fruit be in the vine ; the labor of the olive shall fail, 
and the fields shall yield no meat, and the Sock shall be 
cut off ficom the fold, and there shall be no herd in 
the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in 
the God of my salvation. Rejoice in the Lord always 
and again I say rejoice." 

IV. He is glorified in thera bt their hl^adinbss 


It was to the honor of Rachael that Jacob served 
for her seven years, and that his regard was sufficient 
to turn the toil into pleasure. It always tends to the 
praise of an individual. When those who best know him, 
are ready to make any sacrifices, or endure any hard- 
ships in his service. The striength of wise attachment 
implies great excellency. The impressions made by 
character are always the most deep and wonderful. 
Scarcely for a righteous man will one die, yet perad- 
venture for a good man some would even dare to die. 
It is easy to apply this to the subject before us. • It 

reflects comparatively but little honor upon the Rs* 


J a tlje Sdvmr Gdorifod 

deemef to follow him when all is peaceful and invtt<^ 
ing : but when we are called to deny otirselves and 
take up our cross ; to go forth to him without the 
camp bearing his reproach ; to regard father and mo- 
ther and wife and children as nothing when valued a- 
gainst him : to leave all^ and lose all for his sake. 
Then a christian has an opportunity to evince the sin- 
cerity and fervency of his love to the Lord Jesus } and 
to say practically— and people will believe him— i-** Htf 
is 'SO glorious in himself, he is so deax to my affections^ 
he is so essential to every particle of my happiness, that 
whatever be the consequence I cannot return from fol* 
lowing after him." 

. What did Feter and lohil vt^hen th^ were dismiss- 
td with ignominy Irom the council ? They went away 
^ rejoicing that they w^re counted worthy to suffer 
ihaime for his name.'' Hear Paul's account of his suf- 
ferings.-"^^* In labors more abundant, in stripes above 
measure^ in prisons more frequent, in death oft^r Of 
the Jews five times, received I forty stripes save one. 
Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, 
thrice 1 suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have 
been in the deep ; in jdurneyings often, in perils of 
waters, in porils of robbers, in perils by mine own 
countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the 
dty, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the se^ in 
perils among false Ix'ethren ; in weariness and pain*^ 
fulness, in watching often, in hunger and thirst, in 
fastings often, in cold and nakedness^'' Ah, Paul, thy 
rdigion costs thee dear ! And dost thou not repent c^ 
thy engagement to a master, whose service — month af- 
ter month, and year after year, is but a succession of 
priv2a:ions and trials ?-*Repent !-r*^^ I take pleasure in 

in bis People^ IS 

infirmities, in reproaches, in necesaitie;, in persecu* 
tions, in distresses for Christ's sake* The love of 
Christ constraineth us, because we thus judge, that if 
one died for all, then were all dead ; and that he died 
for all th^t they which live should not henceforth live 
unto themselves, but to him that died for them an4 
rose again. 

Love — ^Love is strong as death ; many waters caiw 
not quench love, neither can the floods drown it. You 
do not so strikingly see the amazing vigor of this prin- 
ciple in religion, because Christians are not called in 
our day to pass through the same scenes as they were 
in the beginning of the gospel. Otherwise you would^ 
The principle is the sam^ in every age. It has been 
exemplified long since the apostolical era. Persecu«» 
tion has formerly reigned and ravaged in our own 
country. Many suffered and died privately, a specta- 
fJe to angels though not to men« But we have a large 
IBook of Martyrs. — I enter the prisons and survey the 
victims. Here I see the old, of whom it is said, " They 
shall be affraid of that which is nigh, and fear shall be 
in the way, and the grashopper shall be a burden.'' 
Here I see females distinguished by the delicacy and 
timorousness of their sex. Here I see children, tender 
and impressible. — But all are heroes. What makes them 
so ? They are offered promotion, liberty and life. But 
none of these things move them. They iire told of 
tortures ; they are led forth and pointed to the stake — 
and^they embrace it, crying, ^* None but Christ ; none 
but Christ.'* How is He glorified here !-.We ourselves 
have frequently seen a little of this principle even in 
our own day. We have seen the young man resolved 
to follow his reli^ous convictions though mocked of 


14 The Saviour Glorified 

his neighbors, lampooned by his companions, an4 
threatened by his superiors. We have seen the servant 
resigning her place : we have seep the workman, fore- 
going his labour and seeking employment, rather than 
give up an apprehended duty. We have seen the 
daughter, regardless of entreaties and tears— even a 
mother's entreaties and tearsr— the most trying and 
terrible of all perstcutions to an ingenuous and filial 
mind— rather than renounce the communion of saints, 
and turn her back on the *^ glorious gospel of the bless- 
ed God." The disposition which xarri^ persons so 
far, would, if events required it, carry them &rther ; 
carry them to any length. They have the spirit oi 
martyrs, and says Christ, " I am glorified in them.'' 

V. He is glorified m their profcssion of hjs 


If it were only necessary to be a Christian, there nev^ 
er would have been a martyr— he could have hid his 
religion in his heart. Daniel might have prayed with- 
out the place and the posture he chose ; and haye esca- 
ped the lion's den. But if we examine the scripture 
we shall find, that an obligation lies upon us not only 
to be christians but to appear such ; not only to believe 
with the heart, but to confess with the tongue y not on- 
\y to hold fast the reality, but the profession of *our 
faith without wavering. It is asked, *^ Who will rise 
up for me against the evil doers ? Who wiU stand up 
for me against the workers of iniquity ?'* It is said, 
** They that are in darkness shall shew thenrisdves.'* 
They are enlightened for this very purpose : " Arise, 
shine, for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord 
is risen upon thee." A christian is compared to a can- 
dle J and our Saviopr tells us, " a man does not light 

in his People. IS 

(I candle to put it under a bushel^ but on a candlestick 
that it may give light to all thatare in the house :^* and 
addsy '^ Let your light so shiile before men that they 
may sec your good worjcs, and glori£y your father 
-which is in heaven.''— ^So little countenance does the 
scripture give to the practice of those who renounce 
business, detach themselves- from the community, run 
into the cells of solitude, and bury their religion alive. 

A profession of godliness not only requires that you 
should live in civil society, but also that you shbuld join 
yourselves to some body of christians, according to the 
order of the gospel. If all were Ukeminded with some, 
there would be no such thing as a church- state any where 
to be maintained. They never became members of a 
society. They live unconnectedly. Excuse the rough- 
ness of the comparison, they may be considered as a 
kind of religious gypsies — They have no spiritual home 
— ^They wander from place to phce— Pilfering as they go 
—Eluding all parochial offices — ^Declining all the king's 
taxesr— And never contributing to the support of any 
of the advantages they enjoy.— Whereas christians are 
called ** fellow citizens with the saints." They belong 
to a holy state of laws and immunities. They join m 
communion as to the privileges of religion ; in co-ope-> 
ration as to its duties ; in sympathy as to its con(tt- 
tions. To vary the image — as the pupils of Christ 
they enter his school ; as solctiers of Christ they enter 
his army. Stragglers can do little— they are liable to 
be cut off. It is not the will of the Commander in 


Chief that we should fight alone — ^he calls us to be em- 
bodied ; and when we are enrolled and stationed — ^it 
is nqt his pleasure that xve should ryp from one corps 

^ § The Saviour Clarified 

to another, according to our humour, but abide wifk 
God in our own rank and place. 

This pio£sssio|ti also includes our bearing, as weha.v% 
iq>portunity,' a verbal t^tioipny in iavor of rdigton^ 
«« Te are my 'witnesses,*' says God ; ^d woe to u^-«- 
for we are subpoened, i^ when we are catted fipon to 
4epose, we are either absent or silenjC. Some persons 
are godly with the godLv, but tempwize in the pies- 
mce of the wicked aiid tne worldly. When they hear 
the truth of Christ denied, his ways misrepresented* 
his people vilified, ^ they sit as men in whose mouth 
there is no r^oof. — ^Is this to act th^ part of a good 
subject, or pf a traitor ? ^^ He that is not for n^e b 
against me , j^id he th^t gathereth not with me scat* 
tereth abroad**' If yoif are ashamed of the Redeemer's 
interest, abandon it at once ; but if you believe it to 
be, what it really b, infinitely important and excellent, 
never shrink from ^a avowal of it in whatever (^cum« 
stances or company you are founds 

We know that wisdom is profitable to direct* Every 
thing is beautiftU in )ts season. A word fitly spokefi 
how good is it ? But we are often more in danger of 
erring on the side of caution and prudence, than op 
the side of forwardness and zeal ; and to avoid rashness 
many shelter themselves under the chilling influence of 
fear and shame. 

There is one case in which it is hardly possibly to err. 
It is when you are invited by people to places, and par^ 
ties, and practices, which your principles lead you to 
condemn. When this occurs, you have an opportunity, 
*< furnished by themselves,^' of stating the grounds a£ 
your conduct, and the reasons of your refusal They 

in his hcfh. li 

Annot Mrdy bb offended at the delivery of your creed, 
when they themselves call for your sentiments* But, 
alas, there are many who instead of seizing such fine 
(Opportunities to testify, are not only speechless but-—' 
even yield and conform. They are overcome of evil* 
inste^ of " overcoming evil With good.** 

Vf. He is glorified in them bt their exertioi^b 


The cause of Christ is very extensive. It takes in 
every thing that is true and righteous, and good and 
Boble in the whole universe. But We particularly refer 
to the cau^e of pure and undefiled religion. This is 
advanced by establishing schools, building places of 
worship, the difiusing of the scriptures,' the sending 
forth of missionaries, the supporting of ministers } by 
instructing the ignorant and redaimmg the vicious ; 
teaching transgressors his ways, and convertiiig ^nners 
unto God. 

In doing all this, Christ is glorified. He condescends 
to consider you as workers together with him. He 
gives you his own names ; and what he is called ef- 
ficiently you are allowed to be called instrumentally* 
^ Brethren," says the apostle latnes, ** If any of you 
do err from the truth and one convert him ; let him 
know that he which converteth the smner from the 
^rror of his way, shall save a soul from death, and 
shall hide a multitude of sins." What ! Can you 
^ convert P* Can you «• save ?" Can you " pardon ?" — 
It can intend only that you may be the means of do- 
ing it. But even this is ain infinite honor conferred 
upon upon you ; and the inspired writer knowing the* 
disposition of christians, makes the work its own re- 
Ward. And if there was only a probability ; if ther6 

18 The Saviour Glorified 

yjns only a possibility of success but in one instance^ 
it ought to be enough — ^antiif we were in a proper state 
of mind, it would be enough to lead us to trail into ao. 
don all our resources, and to exert all our influence, 
through life to attain it ! » 

Pleasure and praise run through Gtxl's ho6t, 

To see a »nner turn ; 
Thou, SataOf hath a captive lost, 

And Christ a subject bom. 

And can ydu do nothing to glorify the Redeemer ? 

Are you a • parent ? Cannot you recommend HKm to 

your children ? Are you a master ? Cannot you preach 

Him to your servants ? Are you the head of a family ? 

Cannot you 'say with Joshua, " As for me and my 

house we will serve the Lord?'* Are you a nefigh- 

hour ? Cannot you invite yolxr acquaintances to come 

and hear the word of life? Are you a tradesman? 

Cannot you fulfil the prophecy ; " Her merchandise 

and her hire shall be holiness to the Lord ; it shall not 

be treasured nor laid up ; for her merchandise shall be 

for them that dwell before the Lord, to eat sufficiently 

and for durable clothing/* Are you rich ? Cannot you 

*^ honor the Lord with your substance and with the 

first fruits of your increase ?" Indeed there is nothing 

by which you may be .so useful in the cause of Christ, 

as property, since it enables you to employ every kind 
of instrumentality. 

Every one, therefore, may do something; and att 
may do much more than fear or sloth will allow them 
to imagine. This being admitted, it is hoped that no 
one will suflFer his exertions to be chilled by the mis* 
application of acknowledged truth*. [^ The Lord has 


inJns People/ ^Xft 

promised to catty on his own cause. Hie is able to do it : 
and he wiH do it*'^— He will— ^But he works by means ; 
these means display his wisdom as well as his power j 
and those who love his name, will desire to become 
instruments in \m h^d. 

It is needless, to remark how forcibly this subject 
bears upon the union which you have so nobly esta- 
blished and maintsdned'; aud the success of which, if 
It has not been answerable to your wishes, has been 
sufficient tp encourage your hopes and reward your 


Temporal beneficence is not to be undervalued, 
Whik we are in this vale of tears we shaH be perpe- 
tuafly called to the exercise of it. Who is not ready 
to bless the man wl^o feeds the hungry, and clothes the 
naked, and he^s the fick ? - 

But after all, charity is to be estimated by the gran- 
deur, the capacity, and the duration of its object. 

No zeal therefore can equal that which regards the 
salvation of the soiiL— Men are perishing for lack, of 
knowledge— The gospel ^s the only remedy. — ^There 
is no alternative between our belief of the truth of the 
gospel, and the importance of it ; between our belief 
of its importance ^nd our owning an obligation to re-* 
ceive it ourselves and extend it to others. 

How consistently therefore, my United Brethren, 
are you engaged while attempting to diffuse it. And 
this is your sum— your only aim. Your object is not 
to make proselytes but converts. What bigots magni- 
fy, you overlook. While you hold your convictions 
•upon si^rdinate subjects, your conduct asks, '^ What 
is the chaff to the wheat ! You consider every thing as 


80 The Saffioitr Glorified 

'. « 

tnfliAg compared with the everlasting ftalvation of the 

souk of men. Tou practically acknowledge that th^ 

^^ Kingdom of God is not liieat and cbrink but righteous^ 

pess, peace .and joy in the Holy Ghost 'i that in Christ 

Jesus neither circumcisibn availeth aay diing nor uncir^ 

cumcision but a new creature." 

" — And as many as walk by this rule^ peace be oa 
them and mercy and upon the Israel of God.^' May 
your zeal jprovoke very many j and still discovering 
the same spirit, and minding the same thingv n^^ty you 
at last obtain the approving sentence. Thou hast la* 
BOURED AND ^AsT NOT FAINTED. Let me therefore 
conclude by observing—^ 

Hrst, That Christians ought not to think meanly of 
themselves. This remark is liable to abuse and needs 
explanation. It does not stand opposed to humbleness 
of mind, but to thoughtlessness and levity. There is 
a personal self- valuation which is censurable j but there 
is a relative self-valuation that is not only aHowaUb but 
commendable. For instance. A mother ought not to 
feel an indifference to herself : slie ought to know that 
her life is of importance to her little rising charge. 
For who can fill her place ? Who can feel for an tniurit 
like her who bore it?-^And this consciousness instead 
of inflaming her pride will be a source of gratitude, 
self-preservation, and duty. A minister may be humble 
and heavenly-mmded, and long to depart to be with 
Christ which ts far bef tct ; 1but when he looks around 
upon his people, Hq may f^el that his labors are desira- 
ble, and say. To abide in the flesh is more heedful for 
you.. But there is no relaticm so momentoiis is that 
whicti subsists between Christ imd christian'^ Abd it 

in bis People^ SL 

'Hb be disgcaced or glorified in u&— O ! .how we ought, 
to feel the value of our character^* the sacredness of our 
conditioD, the awfulne^s of our destinatioiu the neces-. 
aity of self-attention, of vigilance, and of prayer ! 

Secondly. If He is glopified in us let nis be his set r 
vants, attending continually upon this very tiling. Let 
it be the grand and pleasing business of our lives. O, 
imy dear brethren in the ministry, and my christian 
friends, let us mourn over the fittle honor we havQ 
brought to our Lord and Saviour* Let his fame be 
dear to our hearts^ Let us not be satisfied with the 
thought that we have disgraced him — ^though this is a 
mercy — ^but let us be concerned to honor him — to hon- 
Qt him in all bur words and works, in our conversation 
and conduct, in our bodies and spirits. 

Need I say how much He deserves it ? You know 
what he is. You know what he has done. You know 
what he is doing. You know his promises. Yott 
Jo^ow his sufferings.'— ^See him who was rich, for your 
sakes becoming poor. See him a noan of sorrows an^ 
acquainted, with grief. See him in the manger ; in the 
garden y on the cross. 

See from his head, his hiiliidi) his feety 

Sorrow and lovt^ow aiingled down*; 
Did e^er such love and sorrow meet. 

Or thorns compose so rich a crown : 

—Were ihe whole realm of nature mioe, 

That were a present far too small*; 
Xove s6 amazing, u> divine, 

Demands my soul, my lifis, my all. 

Thirdly. If Christ is ^rifled in his people here, 
how will he be glorified in them hereafto: ! In the 

f2; The Saviour Glorified^ &c.. 

vastness of their number ; iii the completeness of theiir 
deliveiuhce ; in the grandeur of their elevation ; ia 
the beauty of their resideilce ; in the eternity of their 
jpy8^-i>^ IChen shaS he cofne to be glorified in- his saints, 
and to be admired iA iSi them, that believe in that day/' 

Fourthly. Let the wicked remember that Christ 
will be glorified ih them. ' He will display his wisdom 
and power ih making them instruments to accomplish 
hb providential purposes ; in turning their designs and 
actions from their natural currents, into secret chan- 
nels prepared to receive them, and in which they will 
flooir into the fulness 6f him thlf lllleth ^ ib all. The 
ym\\i of man shall praise him, and the remainder o£ 
wrath will he restrain. Nebucbadnezs^ar is called his 
servaj^t as well ad Moses. 

He will glorify, his truth and His righteousness in 
punishing them ; either in a way of tqercy or in a way 
of justice, he hasi sworn by himself, the word is gone out 
of hts mouth, that to him every knee shall bow and 
€very tongue coUJFesis. 

<* Acquaint now thysctf with Mm, and be at peace ; 
thereby good shall come unto thee. Kiss the Son, lest 
he be angry, and ye parish from the way, when hisi 
wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that 
put their trust in him."-— p—^;;?^;;. 







• • 


















"WE, the Jfinistcrs of the Wiltshire Ammocu 
atibn assembled together at Melksham this 'aayy October 22^ 
r ^806 , €leploring the little regard of late years paid by too 

many Professors of Religion to the christian rule of Marriage t? 
and deeming it desirable that the^hitention of the public in gen-' 
• eralf and our own Churches in particular should be called to 

this subject, do unanimously request the Rev. Wm. Jay to 
publish some Strictures upon ity and the more sOy as he has 
already sent forth a Sermon on the Duties of Husbands and 
Wives which has met with great Acceptance* 

On behalf of the Association^ 

GEORGE MANTEL, Cbaikmait. 




The peculiarity and importance of the Marriage RekOime 
ThepOMibility of knowing the Will of God in thie AJair. 
The Law laid down., 


T&is Law argued and established^ 


The £viU of tramgreMing it variously viewed. 


The Mitchi^ hiataricaUy coneidere^ 


Excuset to Justify a deviation from it examined, 


In what cases this Law is not broken, though both the Partits 
be not religious, 


X^isregard to this Principle lamented. But Piety though es- 
sential to Choice not suffcient alone to justify it. Ministers 
under peculiar obligation to marry discreetly. Prudence 
ntedfitl and rectmi»ended. 


Section j. 

Tie peeidiarity ana importance of (he Marriage Rflatiom 
The possibility if knowing the will of God in this affair* 
The Law laid dottnu " 4, 

HOW wonderftil fe it, Chat two persons, who^r- 
haps never met before, s^ould,^ by a train of circum- 
Staines be brought together, obtain a peculiar propri- 
ety in each other, and form one absolute communion 
of wishes', joys and sorrows* 

If we con)pate this ^ relaijton with otlier connexion?, 
we shall find it surpasses theni alL-^Are other unions 
optional i They may be limited in their €ontinua:nce, 
or terminated at pleasure. But this is permanent, and 
indissoluble. You cannot marry for a given period. — 
It is for life. Are other unions nat%:ral ? Intimate 
indeed is the relation between brother and sister : 
tender is the. relation between parents and children, 
especially between the mother ^nd ** the son of. her 
womb.'' ^* But for thb cause shall a man . leave his 
father and mother, and shall be jcMned unfo his wife, 
and they two shall be one flesh. What God haith 
joined together let no map put ^jguder." 


^. ■:*• 

6 '* Essay on Marriag/. 

'the Marris^e Connexion therefore is .the most singr:^ 
ukr, and the most important. Hence' it can never hn* 
viewed with indifference. It cannot be carelessly con- 
templated by legislators, by politicians, by moralists^ 
by divines — And can it be slightingly regarded by the 
individuals themselves ? The effects extend to families, 
ind (tdmmunities — ^but how much more powerfuDy 
must 'the consequences affect the parties immediately 
concerned ? — Can the scripture, ai^t^s alive to the 
wel£ire of man, Can the scripture j^ by such a re- 
lation ?— ^Impossible. It shksws us its divine institution 
and benediction in Paradise, k shews us our Saviour 
gracing' with his presence ths celebration of a Marriage 
at Cana in Galilee, and displaying: ^^ his glory'^ by 
working a mirade to preserve the nenr-married couple 
from embarrassment and mortiicatioa^ It shew#us 
in this condition, characters the most eminent and dis^ 
tinguished for piety* and usefulness ; witness Enoch, 
aiftd Peter, and Janets and John. It brands with in£a- 
spy the doctrine that ^' fc^bids to marry.'* It often 
employs the connexion as the image of the union sub- 
sisting between ^* Chrbt and the Church. It assures 
us that *' Marriage is honourable in aU, and the bed 
undefiled : but whoremongers and adulterers God wtB 

It is obvious therefore that the scripture is far from 
discouragihg Marriage. But what it does not condemn, 
it is careful to regulate. — Let us then, my Chrisrian 
Friends, look after the will of God in this momentous 
and interesting subje^^. « ^ 

If ever we err^ it ^P|k from any defect in the scrips . 
ture, but because there Is some '* occasion of stumblii^ 

^ 4^ 

Eisay on Marriage. 7 

in us :*' some inattention that hinders examination, or 
some prejudice that perverts it. His word is *^ a lamp 
fUnto our feet, and a light unto our paths." There is a 
sufficiency in it for all the useful purposes of '* life and 
godliness."— -Can a man ask at these ^^ lively pracles," 
how he is to conducijlfcimself in prpsperity or adversity } 
can he inquire how he is to govern his family, and traia 
up his children-^and be at a loss for an answer ? *^ He 
may run that readeth." So it is in the case before us. 
If christians are really desirious oif knowing with whom 
in Marriage alliance, they are to unite themselves, we 
make no scruple to say the revealed will of God is de* ' 
cisive and clear-^ lT>.jiSTaiCTS their qhoics to rbi:^ 


■^ * fc » ■^b^<|>M»fc^ 

• 9 


ITkkfi Lat$ argued and estubhshed. 


If nothing express had been s^id. on this sul^ect, th^ 
jconclusion might fairly have been drawn, from these 
general commands which forbid all chosen and needless 
association with the irreligious founded on ihe. danger 
of contamination. 

The case may be .confirmed in no inconsiderable 4e« 
gree froni the state of the lews. It is scarcely necessary 
to mention, that the Jews were forbidden to n^^arry 
with the surrounding nations. But it may be pro|^t 
to state two objections. 

First. It may be said that the prohibition was con- 
fined to the i^even accursed nations of Canaan. But 
this was not the case. Ammonites, Moabites, and 
Egyptians are reckoned by Ezra among those from 


8 ' Etsay on Marriage. 


wlibm the returned Israfelites were to be separated \ and 
ilone of these belonged to the race thus devoted to t%^ 

Secondly. It may be supposed that this law was 
poKtical, ^nd regarded this people only in their civH 
and national capacity. But the fdfeUty of thb wiB be 
demonstrated by remarking — ^first, that they wete ^• 
lowed to marry with individuals of any of the neigh- 
bouring countries when they became Rrosdytes. — This 
shews, that the interdiction regarded not their nation 
but their religion. And Secondly, that the reaison 
* always assigned as the ground of the prohibition b not 
political, but moral—r^uid therefore universally and con* 
standy binding. Thus we find Moses saying, ^ Neither 
sliah thou make Marriages with them : thy Daughter 
thou shalt not give unto his son; nor his daughter 
shak thou take unto thy son. For they will turn away 
thy son from foDoifing nie, that they may serve other 
gods : so will the anger of the Lord be kindled against 
you, ancl destroy thee suddenly.'' 

Btit to come nearer. Have we not in the new tes- 
tament a prohibition the most e^i^pliclt ?— 7** Be ye not 
uneqtiaUy yoked together with unbelievers.** We are 
aware that some are disposed to take this scripture in 
a larger sense, as forbidding to join with such persons 
in church communion. But in answer to this-— not to 
remark, what we think cannot be denied, that the ex- 
prAsion of yoke-fellow is more used in reference to 
Marriage than to church communion ; the former appli- 
cation of it being the natural and original, the )at^t 
of course only the borrowed and secondary ; I say not 
to avail ourselves of this circumstance, we observe* 

Essay 4n Marriagi. ^ 

AsH W€ have nolhing to fear from adrnktiog tha ex* 
{Ration proposed. Eor if chviitiaiis are forlndden to 
join with unbelievers in church^communiony surdy 
they are equally enjoined not to enter with them into 
marriage contract. What ! were the converted Corm- 
tbiaos commanded to ^' come put from among theni :**" 
and permitted to ..enter into the closest affinity 
with them? Wer^ they ordered to be separate and not to 
f^ touch the iiAcIe^n thiag :'' and y^et be allowed to be- 
come jon^ body ? W^ ther^ to b? . np " fellowship be- 
tween righteousness and uppght^ousness, between light 
and darkness:'' and yet were these to be united foe 
ever ? Was. " he that beli^vqth to have no part with an. 
infideV and yet su^ them to be partner^ for life ? 
Was " the Teniple of Go(i tq h^ye npthing to do, witli 
idols/' and yet, w^re idpls to be set up within its walla? 
But if this be not deemed sufficient to establish our 
doctrine^ let us attend to the language of the apostle 
wheu speaking exprwly of marriage. •* The Wife," 
says he, '^ is bound by the law, as long as her husband 
<< liveth : bvt if her. husband be dead^ she is. at liberty 
" to be naarried to whom ^ will : only in the Lord.*' 
Now diough this be stated^ as the occasion of the words 
required, in reference to a widow, the limitation un- 
questionably extends to all christians in the same rela^ 
tiVe circumstances. This then is the law of the house* 
This is the . indispensable consideration -^-only in thx 
LORD. — ^Thus the will of God is fully made known, 
and there are two things we ought to remark with re- 
gard to it« 

Firsts H^ camiot err in hb decision. His ^'judgment 
^Ms%lways according to truth. His understanding is 

%0 EiiBj m Marriage. 

^^Jnfrflte." ife VfewB a stibject in an its bearings, inaB 
its ooosequences^ in aU the posnbilities of its operation. 
He aees effects inditir canses. He knows the end from 
thftxb^ginntnj;^ He percebres how we should tUnk, fed 
mdact in wvy untried-state of being, {iow qualiied 
"^t&^pfore is help undertake to diract ns ? AAd to what 
ina^fidt respect and absoliu^ oompKaiice is the deternoti 
nition of. siieh «n adirfser tntitled ? 

But secondly^ we should remember that his ^toyndi 
is not advice^ but command. Considered indeed as 
speaking from a regard to our welfare, a love to our 
soub-«-Jie is the friendly monitor : but as to our obliga- 
tion to obey, and the danger we incur by transgression 
.'-Hthere he is nothing less than a Sovereign. It is at 
your peril to cast any of his words behind )^ur back.-* 
^ See that ye refuse not hiin'that speakdth." 




IF people were as easily .satisfied in receiving truth at 
they are in opposing it ) if no more w^ needful to in- 
fluence the pra£dce than tp produce convi&ion ; it 
might be unnecessary to enlarge after the addu^on of 
the preceding arguments. But alas ! in spiritual cobp 
cerns men venture their souls on such srifling evidence, 
as, were it to govern them in their temporal dffdkrs^ 
would lead their fellow-creatures to conchide th^t they 
were either madmen or idiots. Here we need ^' line 
upon line i precept upon precq>^ Let us then s||cify 
some of the disadvantages and injuries that arise from 



» iafiraj^on of this bvr anMmgproiitMM of iieli|^^ 
And here we may otwferve*** 

--^Tliat it scaadaKtes othen. It comteraditf) dbeon*^ 
mgfSy and ccmfomids imaifters# k injures tlie mikidll' 
of your feQov chriftians. M proves a dtftresei to th^ 
ftjrongy and^ a ftunbling hioA to tbe weak.'' It tunt» 
that ^^ whkhr h lame out of the way*** To your piouli' 
relations it occasions the moftpakifid regret and aiude« 
ty. ** And Esau was forty years old when he took to 
wife Judith the Daughter of Beeri the HittUe, and Ba- 
shemath the Daughter of £lon the Hittite, who wen a 
grief of roind unto Isaac and Reboccab.*— Aiyl Rebtc^ 
cah s^d to IsaaQ> I am weary of my life, becauM of rthe* 
Dau^ters of Heth : if Jacob take a wife of the thm^ 
ters of Heth^ such as these who are ot tl^ Daughter 
of the land) wh^t good fldail my life do me ?" 

— ^It excites suspicion of your own refipdn/ At 
leaft it shews that you are not alive to it principles and 
privileges : that if you ask !ts advice you can follow 
your own opinion ; and that if you profess to please it, 
you are not ahaid to o&nd it. Would you marry an 
enemy of your own, before you believed there was a 
change of disposition wrought in him ? And why ? 
Because you love yourselves-^this would prevent it. 
And if the love of God prevailed in your hearts would' 
you marry an enemy to God before you discerned in 
him an evidence of conversion ? " Do not I hate them 
O XiOrd thatliate thee, and am not I grieved with those 
that rise up agnnft thee ? I hate them with perfeA ha- 
tred. I count them mine enemies/* What do ye more 
than others ^ Should not the line of diftinftion between 
the chw^h and the world be not only real, but visible ? 


1 2 Estof m. Marriage • 


Sbonld not thexhriftita, umversaJly appear \ Are not 
his dioice and refusal, as well as his sorrow and joy to 
dfipiee the eniptre of religion ? " Whatsoever ye do in 
VfOfA or deed do all in . the. napie of the Lord Jesus. 
TV^ether ther^oreye eat or drink, or whatever ye do, 
dp all to the glory of God." These are the injunftiops 
dF Qpd. And we, are to ^' esteem all his command* 
mentS: coDc^n^ng all things to be right, and to hate 
every false way/' 

Again. We call uppn you to remember the duties 
cuDJpined upon chtistians with regard to their house- 
hcdds. . The. discharge of these duties in married life 
requires union, countenance, assistance. . vThey cannot 
be. performed to advantage, if at aU, .wliere m the 
Ifeads of, the launijy, there is a contrariety of convic- 
tions, dispositions, and pursuits. Peter therefore en- 
forces his admonition upon husbands and wives by this 
motive, " that your prayers be not hindered.'* For 
imagine the case we are condemning. Does the man 
seek the glory of God in all he does, and the woman 
her own glory; Does the woman make the will of 
God her rule, and the man his own will ? Instead of 
striving together, they draw adversely, and the desigiv 
of the union is defeated. Are there children? Some 
will be likely to adhere to the father ; some to the mo- 
ther. Are there servants ? Some will be likely to attach 
themselves to the master ; some to the mistress. Thus 
the husband and wife vnll probably keep a perpetual 
\^tch over each other, unwiHing to lose any of their 
respective influence; and the bouse will be divided 
against itself. ^ 

^ We observe also, that we personally need every assis- 
tance we can receive in our passage to heaven. There 



Essay on Marriagi. 1 S 

IS surdy Enough in otirselves, and in tKe way \^e tfavel 
to keep us back wifliout Engaging any one constantly to 
retard our progress, either by opposition or diversfbn ! 
What need often have we of council in spiritu^ dark- 
ness and doubts ? of comfort in soul-trouble ? of sim- 
ulation by reproof or example^ in oni religious languors ? 
" Two are better than one, because they have a good 
reward for their kbour. For if they fall the one will 
lift up his fellow : but woe to him that is* alone when 
he walketh : for there is not another to help him up." 
He is a friend indeed who knov^s thte road, will journey 
with us, and afford us seasonable succour: but what 
assistance is to be derived fi^om one who has no i^es or 
hands, or who is going in a contrary direction ? Is it 
enough when we want daily and hourly support, that 
a companion will not try to interrupt us ? 

For here — -and this is another consideration — ^here 
not to help is to hinder. The very attraction of the 
mind from high and holy things by continual discourse 
about other subjects, will be no inconsiderable detri- 
ment. For it is by the frequent recurrence of divine 
things in our thoughts and in our conversation, that 
we become spiritually-minded, and continue so. Pious 
emotions may be starved, where they are not assassin- 
ated. Fire will be extinguished immediately by water : 
but it will go out in time, even for want of ftiel. 

But we do not go too far when we say, that an ir- 
religious connexion is Kkely to prove the most effectual 
instrument in the world to injure us, not only by weak- 
ening impressions, chilling our affections, and drawing 
us off by degrees from various duties, but also by per- 
verting the judgement, and enticing to sin. •* They 


1 4 ^4say GH Marriagi. 

were mingled with the heaUien^ and learned their' 
yorkftj and they served their idols which becande a 
snare unio them. Evil communications OMrrupt good 
sftanners. And here sevcpral addkional things shouid 
be seriously considered^ For instance. 

•t-^Tbe ^fxample is near*«-is always in sight. 

•s^Evil has more power over us than good. An'oath 
when heardy will make a deeper impression than a pray« 
ir. Proline images are more easily retained in the 
mind than pure ones. Evil falls itt with our depravity ; 
and always find9 in ua a friend to welcome and tcr 
strengthen it, 

—The danger is greater if the? untoniverted party be 
the husband, as he has the advantage of superior au* 
thority and influence. 

-—The more attachment there is^ the greater the 
liazasd of moral injury:, for afiection is wonderfully 
atesimibting« Like fire it reduces etery thing it seizes 
into ita own nature. We are always in a great measure 
the same with the object of our regard. The image^ 
by it9 frequent entrance into the mind, and by its resir 
dence there, leaves its impression and resemblance. 

But if you should escape unhurt mcaraliy'-^which 
would be little less than a mirade-^stiU you may expe* 
rience bitter trials ; and under these crosses you will 
not be able to lode up to God for support and deliver- 
ance with the same cheerfulness and confidence you 
would feel if they were afflictions of his sending.-— But 
you have chosen them.— Hence painful reflexions o^ 
mind. Hence you may expect to hear as the inquiry of 
conscience, and as the censure of Providence*-^^ Hast 
thou not procured this unto thyself. Thou hast done 

Si^y $n Marriage. 15 

foolishly, from henceforth thou shalt hive wars/* Yea^ 
something of this kind must he expected,— ^< If my 
children forsake my law, and walk not in my jud^^- 
ments : if they break my statutes, and ktep not my 
commandments: then will I visit their transgreaaions 
with a rod, and their iniquity with stripes/' He has 
said ^^ if ye walk contrary to me, I also will walk con- 
trary to you/* And he is a faithful God. And he 14 
able to make good his word. He can take satisfaction 
out of our chosen delights. He can remove them hn 
his anger* He can leave them to produce leanness in 
our souls. Though he forgives the iniquities of his 
people, he takes vengeance on their inventions. 

To which we may add — and these are natural and 
unavoidable consequences— the painful ansdousness of 
living with those from whom you fear that you shall be 
separated for ever ; and the peculiar disagreeableness of 
being connected with those who are incapable of the 
principal part of your affection. Love them you may 
indeed as husband or wife ; but not as believers i not 
as followers of our Lord to whom you are allied by 
stronger ties than human, and which can never be dis« 
solved. Must not this be a vast deduction of happiness ; 
a bitter ingredient in the cup ; a kind of daily death i 


The Mischief bisioricalfy considered. 

W£ may take another view of the breach of this law, 
and sefe the evils that resulted from it as natural effects, 
or as judgments from God as they are held forth in the 
scriptures of truth. 

1 6 Euay on Marriage* 

This was the particular sin for which God drowned 
the old world. 

Some of Lot's daughters married in Sodom, and pe« 
rished in the overthrow. 

Both Ishmael and Esau married irreligiously, and 
wei'e both rejected and turned persecutors. 

The first blasphemer that was stoned by God's com- 
mand is marked as an offiipring of one of these marria- 
ges — -his mother had espoused an Egyptian. 

The first captivity of the Jews after their settlement 
in the holy land is ascribed to this cause. ^ The whole 
passage is very instructive. It is said that the remains 
of the nations *' were to prove Israel to know whether 
they would hearken unto the commandment of the 
Lord which he commanded their fathers by the hand of 
Moses.— And the children of Israel dwelt among the 
Canaanites, Hittitcs, and Aniiorites, and Perizzites, and 
Hivites, and Jebusites : and they took their daughters 
to be their wives, and gave their daughters to their 
sons, and served their gods. And the children of .Is- 
rael did evil in the sight of the Lord, and forgat^ the 
Lord their God, and served Baalim and the groves: 
therefore the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel, 
and he sold them into the hand of Chushan-rishathaim 
king of Mesopotamia : and the children of Israel served 
Chushan-rishathaim eight years," 

David married the daughter of Talmai, king of 
Geshur, by whom he had Absalom — ^The disgrace and 
curse of his family. 

The case of Solomon is a warning to all ages. 

His son Rehoboam, that lost the ten tribes, sprang 

Ei^uy on Marriags^ 


from one of these forbidden marriages — ^his mother wa9 
an Ammonitess. 

The marriage of Ahab is thus awfully noticed. ^^ And 
it came to pass as if it had been a light thing for Urn 
to 3i^k in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that 
he took to wife Jezebel th^ daughter of Ethball king 
of the Zidonians, and went, and served Baal and wor- 
shipped him.— rfiut there was none like unto Ahab who 
did sell himself to work wickedness in the ^ight of the 
Lord whom Jezebel his wife stirred up/* 

What was it that Ezra so grievously lamented, and 
so sharply reproved I U \^as, that ^^ the holy seed had 
bungled themselves with the people pf the land/' 

And what ss^ys the jealous reformer Nehemiah?— 
^^ Their children $pake h^lf in the speech of Ashdod, and 
Cpuld not spesik in the Jew's language^ bu£ according to 
the language of each people. And I contended witk 
them, and cursed them, and smote certain of them, 
^nd^'plucked off their hair, and made them swear by 
God, saying. Ye shall not give your daughters unta 
their sons, nor take their daughters unto, your sons, or 
for yourselves. Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by 
these things! yet among many nations was there no 
king like him, who was beloved of his God, and God 
made him king over all Israel : nevertheless even hito^ 
^id outlandish women cause to sin. Shall we then 
hearken unto you to do all this great evil, to transgress 
against our God in marrying strange wives !" 

. ^' Now these things were our examples, to the intent 
^e should not lust sifter all things as they also lusted*"- 

1 S Es^ay m Marrhge* 


Excuses to j^tify Deviation from it examined. 

IN the ^ory of the church recorded in the new tes- 
cament, we find no instances similar to those which have 
been remarked in the preceding chapter. The rule ws^ 
too cle^ly understood, and the reasons on which it was 
founded, were too powerfully felt, to allow of its vio- 
lation by the primitive christians. And indeed one 
would suppose that a godly character would stand in 
need of no positive prohibition in such*a case as this. It * 
might be expeicte4 that his very feelings would secure 
him. For surely a kin4 of violence must be ofiered to 
his dispositions and principles before such a step can be 
taken. Accordingly something of this nature is often 
pleaded. They feel religious reluctance, but speak as if 
it w£RB to be, an4 must be. Let us examine this, and 
see whether it be their fate or their folly. 

Sometimes they plead pecuUar circumstances which 
seem to countenance it. As this is a very common ex- 
cuse, and by which many are deluded, it demands some 
notice. And for ever to ched; all encouragement deri- 
ved from this quarter, let the following things be msu 
turely considered. — ^That such prognostics are rarely, 
if ever remarked, but when they fall in with our deter- 
mination, or at least with our propensity. — ^That when a 
man " receives not the love of the truth, God may 
** give him up to strong delusion to believe a lie. — That 
'^ thus saith the Lord God ; every qian of the house of 
^^ Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth 
'^ the stumbling-block of his iniquity before his face, 
'^ and Cometh to the prophet : I the Lord will answer 

J^uiy m Marriage, • t9 

^^ hiiA that cdnieth accordtog to the multitude of hid 
«< idols : that I nuy take the house of Israel in their own 
*' hearty because they are all estranged from me through 
« their idols."— That after he has expressly said to Ba- 
laam " go not," and he finds him still longing for the 
enterprise, he can say by an irorty which the eager niind 
will mistake for reality, "go." — ^That Jonah was de- 
ceived if he supposed that^ when fleeing from the pre- 
sence of the Lord, it was very providential for him to 
find a vessel just ready to sail for Tarshish.^— That cir- 
cumstances and events are equivocal, having, occurred 
at different times with the most contradictory aspects.-^— 
That the word of God is our only guide, and that 
only while walking by this rule shall tnercy and peace 
be upon us. — ^That we are to lay stress on nothing, howr 
ever singular or ftriking, that opposes the revealed will 
of God. — That the death of a prophet sl^ by a lion 
was written to teach us this very 'truth : he had re* 
ceived an express command in which he could not be 
miftaken, and be yielded to another specious suggeftion 
as comi|^ from God concerning which he could not be 

But there is another juftification often urged. It is 
the prosped: of being useful. This also is common, 
and has often ensnared those who ought to walk cir- 
cumspe£l:ly, not as fools but as wise. Here permit me 
to ask you the following queftions. 

Are we to do evil that good may come ? — It is desira- 
ble for a generous chriftian to have property ; he will 
do good with it. But is he to fteal or rob in order to 
obtain it? 

is marriage to be considered as one of the means of 

20 • Essay on Marriage! 

• « « • - ' . ■ 

grace ? Is it ever spoken of in the scripture, as intend- 
ed for the conversion of ^ouls ? Is it any where pre- 
scribed for this purpose ? 

Promises and appearances may induce a pleasing hope 
during the formation of the connexion — tut may not 
these be \^ery fallacious ? To admit this, it, is not ne- 
cessary to suppose that the individual is vile enough to 
deceive wilfully — yet this has frequently been the case, 
and a regard to the fornis of. evangelical religion, lias 
been a mere pretence, gradually thrown oflF as the in- 
ducement for using it ceased — ^but it is not necessary to 
charge a man with hypocrisy. There are many power- 
ful emotions that are very sincere, and yet not dura- 
ble. The mind may be softened by affecfioh ; and 
view every thing in reference to its favorite purpose. — 
Men know not themselves j they are not aware how 
they may feel in new and untried situations. The god- 
liness which they seem even to admire in the general 
indistinct notion, and while at a distance, may become 
very irksome when brought near and acted upon in ev- 
ery instance of life : yea it must be offensive, at least 
in all its more spiritual parts and exercises, to every nat- 
ural man. Who, that is not alive to his religious im- 
provement, is likely to love an example that continual- 
ly admonishes and condemns ? Who that is trying to 
go to sleep loves a noise ? Who that wishes to remain in 
darkness can be fond of light — especially placed so near ? 

Is it not more consistent with a becoming diffidence 
of yourselyres to fear that you should be injured by the 
irreligious, rather than that the irreligious should be 
benefitted by you ? We have already sh^wn the danger 
of this in fact, and which has led an ingenuous author 

Eisay an Marriage^ 9A 

€p remark^ that he who would pull ano|:her out of a pit 
had need stand firm: or he ms^y be pulled in. We have, 
already mentioned Solomon. Whether Solomon hoped . 
to bring over Pharoah's daughter to worship the true^ 
God we know not, but we do know that she brought 
him over to worship a false one.-— But we. haye now to 
do only ^th the apprehension and impression of this 
truth. Is ijt consistent with humility to, suppose that 
you can stand y^rhere, othei:s, and some of them far su- 
perior to. yourselves, have fajlen ? Is it consistent with^ 
a prdper sense of your own weakness to rush into ex- 
treme perils, confident, not only that you shall be secure 
there, but even do. good ? The very imagination fore- 
bodes ill. It looks like the pride that goes before de- 
struction, and the haughty spirit that precedes a fall. 
Indeed, it Is righteous in Qod to suffer us to fell when 
disobeying his command we renounce his protection, 
and venture to proceed without him. 

Again. As you conclude that your companion being, 
ungodly will not be able to make you irreligious — what 
authorizes you to think that your being godly will be 
able to make hicti. religious ? Surely out of your own 
mouth you are condemned ; for the very principle upon 
which you proceed-with regard to yourself should re- 
duce the confidence you indulge with regard to him. — 
If you have no fear that he can impress and influence' 
ypu, you should have no hope that you can impress 
and influence him. If you believe that your love to 
him will not alter you, you ought not to bqlieve that 
his love to yot^ will alter him. 

And do you consider what human nature is ? Do you 
consider what real religion is ? If so, surely you would 


US' ^ Essay on Marriage* 

not think so. lightly of accomplishing the conversion of 
a soul as you now seem to do. If the process be so 
ea3y, why are so few converted at all ? Why do not all 
those who have dear connexions* convert those whom 
they lave and by whom they are beloved ? 

But you say. You do not expect the result indepen^ 
dent of God's influence and blessing — But is not he 
aWe to convert them ? He is. AncJ we have reason to 
believe he has in some cases employed his power. For 
we cannot go the length of Dr.. Doddridge, who lias 
remarked, that where christians have knowingly espou- 
sed irreligious characters he never k;new an instance of 
the conversion of one of them afterwards.-r-But I ask, 
would yon take up an aSiir so important on a ground 
so slender? — On a mere possibility f-rr-For probability 
there is none. You would not like to marry a condem- 
ned criminal, because he may be pardoned oi;*- reprieved. 
God can make a beggax a gentleman, and yet I presume 
you would not like to take him on this presumption ^ 
you \vould rather reckon certainly upon a little wealth. 
Why then marry an unconverted sinner, because God 
may, because God can, cdjl him by his grace ? 

Besides : If the acceptatz^ce and, success of all our en-, 
deavours dapend wholly upon his favour— Can it be s^ 
rational way to attain our wishes, to slight his authority, 
and to provoke his anger by disobedience ? 

But, to conclude. Even if God should over-rule 
such a connexion for good, you will remember that this 
is his work, and the glory belongs to him. It does not 
prove that you have done right ; nor can it free the 
mind from distress in review. For you cannot be so 
ignorant as not to be able to distinguish between your 

£iiaf M Marriage. . tft 

^hrighteoasnestf, and the divine goodness that has ihot 
blessed yoU| notwithsUnding aU your desert. 


in what cases this Law is mi broken^ ibougl) both the Par* 

ties be not religious. 

WE have thus endeavoured, by placing the subject 

in various points of light, to prove, that christians in 

the business of marriage ought to confine their choice 

to pious character only. But to relieve the minds of 

9ome who deserve pity rather than censure, let m6 
remark two or three instances in which the rule laid 
down is not transgressed* 

First. It sometimes happens that both parties are ig# 
norant of divine things at the time of marriage, and 
one is called afterward. When this is the case, the 
blame does not attach. But the individual renewed by 
divine grace, now feels pains and anxieties, to which 
he was before a, strangen It is the nature of grace to 
excite, with a concern for our own welfare, a concern 
for the salvation of others, especially of those to whom 
we are tenderly connected by blood, friendship, or af- 
finity. How can I endure the thought of being sever- 
ed for ever from her in whom my happiness is so much 
bound up ?— " How can I bear,'* will such an Esther 
say, " to see the destruction of my kindred ?** — She 
will therefore pray, and use every persuasive method to 
allure. She will endeavour to render her rehgion love- 
ly and attractive. It is what the scripture enjoins. ** Ye 
^^ wives be in subjection to your own husbands that if 
** any obey not the word, they may without the word 

^i < • E^say on Marriage^ 

** be ^on by the good conversation of the wives : while 
**tKey behold your chaste conversation coupled with 
^ fear." And for the consolation of such, be it re- 
membered that after a trial, and perhaps a long one, of 
their faith and patience, God has frequently heard their 
^titions, and succeeded their endeavours. After per» 
forming religious exercises alone, they have gone to the 
house /of God in company ; and have walked together 
as heii^s 6f the gtac^ of fife* 

* Secondly. Persons may be mistaken after due e^zani** 
ination. Every thing admits of counterfeit. There is 
a specious imitation of every christian grace as well as of 
every moral virtue. But we are riot accountable for 
our inability to read the lieaf t. This is the prerogative 
of God only. ** By their fruits we are to know them/' 
If the profession be fair, and the life blameless, there is 
«^ ho objection tipon this ground to hinder choice. 

Thirdly. There is another case which perhaps td 
some will not carry the same force of conviction. Yet 
we do not express ourselves without die deliberation 
and council.— It is this. Two iodivi^ukls, both, at 
the time of promise, destitute of religion, may sol- 
emnly plfedge themselves to each other, and before thft 
actual accomplishment of the covenant engagement, 
one of them may become pious— -Wc will suppose it td 
be the man— In this case w6 affirrii that he would not 
be at liberty to violate Jiis proiriise, under the pretence 
of looking out for ^ character congenial with his present 

views. If tome contend that marriage be nothing more 
than a civil contract, all must allow that it is nbthing 
-less : and not to observe the coersion of the case — no% 
to observe that the law could enforce the didm ; the in* 

'Essay on Marriage* • '9^ 

imificiency of justifying a civil dffence by a refigiotiK 
reason ; and the ridiculousness of the attempt — ^what a 
dishonour would be done to the cause of the gospel by 
such prevaricating morality? — For such it naust appear 
to the 'world. — Whereas we are to " have our conver- 
sation honest among the Gentiles ;'' we are not to suf- 
fer our "good" to be "evil spoken of:*' we are to 
" avoid the very appearance of evil" — Stich is the holi* 
delicacy of the gospel ! 

This seems to be one of those cases in which a good 
man " sweareth to his own hurt and changeth not*" 
sAnd trying as the-sc&ne may be, if .by the consent of 
the other party he be not honorably disengaged, we 
should advise him toa plain, strait- forward policy ; and 
to expect that in a combination of drcumstances so 
peculiarly providential, all will be over-ruled for good, 
either by way of usefulness or trial. 

And if -even this^lcfnti consideration be notfuffident 
to discharge a man honourably from one to whom he 
has contracted himself— Will any thing else? Can 
tiny thing else ? What ! is he to trifle with a sacred en- 
^gement, and to wound tbe afftetions^ the respecta* 
bility, the health the peace of a female!^ — ^becauseanother 
object comes in view subsequently, in his opinion, more 
bubble for person, for fortune, for. '^address ? ! I If a 
man wished to sink the honor of ^ religion, and to dig. 
grace the value of the christian — ^how much more 
should it ever be the ministerial character ! he could not 
•take a step that would more affectually accomplish Iris 
cpui^ose. . . 

*2iS Essay on Marriage. 


The Disregard 0/ ibis principle lamented. But piety though 
essential to icbmce^ not sufficient alotte io justify it. Min^ 
isfers under peculiar Obligation to marry discreetly. Pnf. 
- dence needful^ *and recommended. 

HAPP7 those who have formed a union, fonnded in 
true godStress, the bonds of which are faith and love 
in Christ Jesus* They are pleasant in life, and in death 
not divide^* But how deploraUe is it, that this chris« 
tian rule of marriage is so frequently trampled upon* 
The violation is, in the degree of it at least, peculiar to 
our own age. Our jhous ancestors, especially among 
the non-conformists, ^ould have been shocked at the 
|Nractice, as appears from their invaluable writings. And 
I am persuaded that it is very much owing to the prev* 
alence of these indiscriminate and unhallovred connex* 
ions, that we iuive fallei^ so fiar short of those, men of 
God who are gone before us, in our seclusion from the 
world, in the simplicity of pur manners, in the unifor* 
mity of our profession, in the discharge of family wor<- 
ship, and the trainhig t^ of our households in the nur« 
ture and admonition oi the Lord. How could it havQ 
h^T^ othermse? Is there not a connexion between 
causes and effects I Do we sow one kind of .grain, an(} 
reap another ? Can men gather grapes of thorns or figi 
of thistles ? 

Guard therefore my christian friends against ever^ 
pretence that would draw you into this forbidden path f 
Establish the unlawfulness, and pernidousness of such 
alliances as ** a principle*' in your minds, that when the 
evil day of temptation cooies, it may find you ready tc^ 

Essay an Marriage. ^ 

resist) sted£ist ia the faith. Tiou should not have your 
weapons to seek when youi want them to use. O wo- 
man» do not accept a inan» who has aU ^^ the wisdom of 
the world/' if a strangei; to the " exceUency of the 
knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord/* Do not, it is 
the rough image of an old divine. Do not chus^ a swine 
because he has a golden trough. Whatever a man pos- 
sesses, remember he has nothing, if he has not ^' the 
one thing needfuL" O man, be not reconciled to a, 
weak or ugly mind, because it wears a handsome body. 
^^ Favour is deceitful, wd beauty is vain : but a woman 
that feareth the i.ord she shall be praised. Give her of 
the fruit of her hands : and let her own works praise 
her in the gate.**' 

But a marriage that is not sinfiil, may be improper. 
The apostle himself distinguishes between what is ** law. 
fill," and what is " expedient.** Religion is indeed in- 
dispensable, but does not alone constitute the propriety 
of the action. Religion is indeed essential, but is not 
abstracted from all other considerations, sufficient to 
justify choice. To exemplify this a little. 

— ^The admission of the piety of the parties does not 
destroy the indecorum of haste, in marrying imme- 
diately after the death of a husband or wife. 

The admission of the pety of the parties does not 


hinder the censure due to a great disparity in years. — 
How unnatural, how indecent is it to see an old man 
surrounded with infants and babes, which he can scarce- 
ly see or hear for the infirmities of age ! How unnatur- 
al, how odious is it to see a young man fastened to z, 
piece of antiquity— so as to perplex strangers to deter- 
mine whether he is living with a wife or a mother ! 

IRJ Esstay on Marrixigek 

The admission of the piety of the parties does nofe 
render in all cases a di&rence of sentiment, and o^' 
denomination unimportant. ': It is not lovely for the^ 
husband and wife to repair on the sabbath day morning 
to separate places of worship. It is not pleasant in re- 
marking^ what they have heard, after their return home, 
for the one to censure what the other approves. It is^ 
not edifying in the dedication of theii: common offspring 
to God by baptism to disagree, not ojily a^ t<> the im- 
portance, but also as to the validity of the ordiiiiinceto 
The observation cannot be considered as founded in bi- 
gotry, since it will equally apply to both sides ojF the 
question, in a number of cases in every rieligious com- 
munity, and is derived from the unalterable nature of 
things. Indeed to have a preference from conviction, 
and to adhere tq the distinctions arising from it, without 
condemning others, can never be confounded with ilJi: 
berality, but by a weak or a vicious mind. 

The adnussion of the piety of the parties cannot pre- 
chide the necessity of suitableness. Indeed religion be- 
ing supposed,, suitableness seems to be th^ chief requi- 
site to the duty, the respectability, and thp happiness 
of connected life. This fitness takes in an adaptation 
to each other personally, and also to the situation in 
which they are called to move. It has commonly beeu 
aid that no class of men err so much in this article as 
ministers. But surely this cannot be admitted. It can- 
pot be supposed that those who have opportunities to 
make the best choice, commonly made the worst. It 
(anno( be supposed that those whose office it is to in- 
culcate prudence, should be themselves proverbial for 
indiscretion. It cannot be supposed that those whose 
incomes 9^'e limited, and whose circumstances demand 


Essay on Marriage. {td 

tconomy) wotikL- bring into the management of them, 
those who have been trained up ih dekcacy, and extra- 
vagance : and are heljdess, and profuse. It cannot be 
Supposed that men, whose office is respectable, and 
productive of sodal intercourse, would select vulgarity 
and ignorance, unfit to be either seen or heard, merely 
because it is pious.— A minister is to inculcate order and 
regularity-^and would he marry a female that would 
render his house a* scene of confusion and tumult ? A 
minister is to shew how the daims of life and religion 
liarmonize, and to assign to the duties of each, their -^ 
own place and sea^n-»^and would he marry a rattle- 
brain, who instead of being a keeper at home, has been 
always rambling after some new preacher ; who instead 
of quietly gloritying God in her proper sphere of action, 
has been endeavouring to excite public attention ; who 
has been zealous in matters of doubtful disputation, but 
has treated as beneath her regard, common and relative 
obligations ? Need he be told that a becooiing behatiour 
in a lower and private station, is the surest pledge of, 
and the best preparation for a proper behaviour in a 
higher and more public situation ! — -A minister is to 
recommend neatness and all the decencies of life^^and 
would he marry a slattern ? A minister is to shew that 
the ornament of a meek and quiet smrit is in the sight 
of God of great price — ^and would ne marry a scold ? 
A minister is to stand in the same relation to all his ^ 
people who demand his love and service — and would he 
' marry a female who would fondly attach herself to a 
few cronies, listen to all their secrets and divulge her 
own, and form cabals and schisms, which will render 
his residence unpleasant, or occasion his rempyal ? 

^'The attention of ministers** says Mr. ^^in, in 
*^ choosing such companions, as may not hinder their 
success, is of so great importance, that in some coun- 
tries the conduct of a pastor's ^^dfe, as welt as that 
of the pastor himself, is supposed either to edify, or 
mislead the flock. Nay the miruster h& £pe^ 


• J 

so Misay.m Marru^e. 

quently condemned for the faults of his wile : thisa ta 
the protest<^t churches of Huogary, they degrade % 
pastor, whose wife indulges h^rs^ in cards, ikncing, 
or any other public amuseaient that bespeaks the gaiety 
of a lov^er of the world, rather than the gravity of si 
christian matron* This severity springs from the sup? 
position, that the woman, having promised obedience, 
to h^r husband, can do nothing put what he either di- 
rects or approves. Hence they conclude that example 
having a greater influence than precept, the wifb of. a 
minister, if she be inclined to the.wprld, will preacjjt 
worldly compliance with more success by her conduct^ 
than her husband can preach Worldly renunciation by the 
most solemn discourses.'^ And certainly the scsmdal of 
many will always be the result of that deplorable incon- 
sistency, which is sometimes . seen bet^^een the seriotis 
instructions of a Godly minister, and the trifling beha- 
viour of a woman with whom he is so intimately con- 
nected. If the wives of the deacon^s are to be " grave» 
not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things,*'— -what hut. 
can be required of the wives of pastors ? " A bishop 
then must be blameless — one that ruleth well his own 
house, haying his children in subjeftion with all gravity* 
For if a man know nc^ how to rule his own house, how 
shall he take care .of the church of Gpd ! 

Things said indeed concerning the wives of ,ministetaf. 
should generally be. received with cautipn. Owing tD 
a line in life, the peculiarity of which is often very little 
known or con^dered, their actions and motives may he 
sometimes cdndemped^ when perhaps instead of deser- 
ving censure, they merit praise. By their imioa with 
persons of some distinction and influence, they are in 
a state to awaken envy, and ill-natured remark. . By 
their occupying a conspicuous station, they are more 
liable to observation than many in more common life. . 
This renders it needful for them to be peculiarly circum- 
spect and exemplary. And it must be .confessed that 
9uch females are placed in a sit^ion very difficult a«i4' 

Eiiti^ on Marriage. 31 

trying. But at the same time if this situation be fiUed 
lip properiy, they have an opportunity to render them- 
selves truly respectable and useful, la a superior degree, 
they may ** serve their generation, according to the will 
of God." In such drcumstances, examples of prudence, 
economyj order, neatness, temper, amiableness, do* 
mestication, will not fail to strike and impress the minds 
of. numbers. 

But there is another view in which we ought to con- 
sider such aij help-meet. It is the advantage which her 
husband derives from her^ not only personally, but 
officially, and by which she is rendered a blessing to 
others. Are his life and exertions and reputation of 
importance ? . And does she, by the excellency of her 
character reflect honour upon his choice, and secure 
deference to his judgment ? Does she, by her attentions 
to his personal appearance, the state of his family, and 
the decorum of his children, add to his respectability, 
and acceptance ? «-Does she, by seasonably aiding his 
remembrance, contribute to the punctuality of his en- 
gagements, his visits, and his correspondence? — ^Does 
she, by allowing " her husband to trust safely in her,'* 
discharge him from secular concerns, and keep him free». 
to pursue hia work with undivided attention ?r- Does 
she by^soothing him under distress^ and tranquilizing: 
him under irritation, preserve his mind in a frame fa- 
voucableto reflection and study ?-r-Does.she, by taking 
care of his health, and spirits, enlarge the number, and. 
lengthen the course of his labours I— «Such(|i female de- 
serves the esteem and applause of a congregation, a 
neighbourhood, a country. 

Of what avail are reflections like (hese to such as have 
already taken unguarded steps. Are not the conseqyen^ 
ces irretrievable ? They are— but • yet they may be .im- 
proveable* I know it is cold comfort to tell a man, in- 
volved in difficulty and distress, that all this might have 
been avoided, and to upbraid htm with the warnings 
which he refused to take. But will it not be useful for 

32 V ' Essay on 'Marriage. 

biai io ascertain the cause of his mistake, aitd to review 
the progress of his infatuation ? May he not turn td 
some good account the lessons of painful experience, 
and the corrections of maturer judgment? Ought he 
not to increase in self-knowledge, 3nd self-diffidence ? 
^ Surely it is meet to be said unto God, I have borne 
chastisement : I will not offend any more : that which 
I see not, teach thou me : if I have done iniquity, I 
will do no more. Search me, O God, and know my 
heart : try me, and know my thoughts, and see ir there 
be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way 

But there are others whose escape is possible, and for 
whose preservation we are concerned. I hope that my 
younger brethren in the sacred office, and those who 
are under a course of preparation for it, will not be 
offended at my taking advantage of this address to in- 
troduce these free remarks on ministerial marriage : 

And by concluding-— in calling upon them to shew 
how undeservedly their body has been reproached.— - 
Let them beware. Let them see how necessary it is, 
not only^ that piety, but prudence should guide them. 
Let them remember how much their comfort, their 
honour, their usefulness depend upon a wise, as well 
as a religious choice. A wrong step here may. involve 
them in embarrassments ; make them go mourning 
down to the grave : strip them of their glory, and take 
the crown from their head. 


himself, but the simple pass on, and are punished. 
Keep sound wisdom and discretion, so shall they 


Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy 
pooT shall not stumble.