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and resources with those of the enemy. Would we in earnest and to effect undertake the terms of the gofpel, would we build on a sure foundation, and fight the good fight of faith, we muft, in like manner, deliberate on this subject; otherwise our time and pains will be loft.

Some labour earnestly in trivial matters, while their main business fuffers. They spend their talents and strength in doing little or nothing with great pains. This is the consumption, not the redemption, of time.

Again, observation of the course of nature and providence brings important instruction with regard to the redemption of time. Our heavenly Father worketh hitherto. His operation in his natural and moral kingdom is unintermitting: He never slumbereth. Numerous examples in the animal creation teach man discretion and industry.

You may let no time be loft, would you merit the character of those who redeem it. Those are wise and happy, who have learnt the art of improving every portion of time to some good account-to whom every business and occurrence, or society, or solitude, prove instructive in their duty to God, or man, or their own souls—who make every pursuit in life subservient to their supreme interest—who are every day pressing forward to the prize of their high calling, waiting on the Lord, and renewing their strength. They have learnt the inost valuable use of the smiles and frowns of providence, and improve every price in their hands to get or do good, to “ Jay up in store for themselves a “ good foundation against the time to come.”

Hence it is important to begin life under an impreffive sense of the high value of time, as a precious gift of God. In him we live, and move, and have our being. He requireth the first ripe fruit. In the morning “ low thy feed, and at evening withhold not thy “ hand.” 'If the worth of time is not realized in youth, there is much reason to fear that it may not be in the

after stages of life. On the most favourable supposition, would you have these stages filled with the fins and vanities of your youth? What excuse is there for thus wafting and abusing your early period ? so acceptable a period ?

Born and educated under gospel light, what pretext can there be for putting off till the eleventh hour the work given you to do? It is impossible that you should repent the early dedication of your time and advantages to the Giver of life and of every good gift, on whom your well-being, in time and through eternity, entirely depend. But a neglect to do so can be expiated only by bitter repentance, if indeed a space for repentance may be given you.

Moderation in all worldly pursuits and concerns-in Jabour or rest, or amusements, or attire, or modes of living, conduces to the redemption of time: It dispofeth alike to the duties of our general and particular calling. Religion neither forbids nor impedes a just attention to things of this life. Such attention is commanded by religion. But certainly we should be without anxious care. We should not be overcharged with things of this life. We should seek first the kingdom of God. Other things should not thrust out or interrupt the exercises of piety. All diligence should be given to make our calling and our election fure.

It conduces to the redemption of time to poftpone small matters to great. When there is an interference, the weightiest must be prefeśred to the least, and must always have the greatest stress laid upon them.

As a further mean of redeeming time, an humble and daily address to the hearer of prayer; morning and evening, is recommended. We need his guidance, help and protection continually, and in every thing. On him it entirely depends whether this or that undertaking shall prosper; or whether we shall live, and do this or that. He guideth those who seek his direction, and giveth liberally to those who ask of him fpi

cerns.

ritual wisdom. In all thy ways therefore acknowledge him. Beginning and closing each day with God, wait. ing on him thro' the business and occurrences of the day, committing your work and your way to him, you will be led in a safe and plain path-will proceed with cheerfulness, zeal and fidelity in all the duties of life, and sustain its sorrows and miseries with patience and humble trust. “Be careful for nothing; but in every “ thing by prayer and fupplication with thanksgiving “ let your requests be made known to God.” Consider this as your privilege no less than duty. This habitual religion, setting the Lord always before you, living as in his presence, will conduce to regularity in all your con

Inclination will be an incentive to whatever he shall require of you in your relations and station of life. The time proper for devotion does not retard, but facilitates and sets forward, the just business of ev. ery man, be that business what it may.

A decided choice of God is unalterably requisite to the redemption of time. Indecision and duplicity are the greatest abuse of time, and an affront to all principle. The laws of morality are eternal and immutable. The relation and duty of the creature to his Creator are immutable. The author of our faith and his terms are the same for ever. The double-minded and irresolute, halting between variant opinions, fixing in none, are in a state equally unhappy and dangerous to themselves, and opprobrious to the cause of virtue. They consume time in deliberating on a question which should be immediately decided on the decition of which consequences of the highest moment depend. If faith and scepticism are equally balanced, the former has no support under the evils of life, or expectation of death ; and may as well be openly renounced as hold the mind in perpetual suspence. What is there in the gospel which makes you doubt? Its principles have been confirmed by the fame works as those of nature : Its hope is sure and stedfast. Shall precious days and years be consumed in hesitation whether to choose and fix in this matter—even in the only thing which can make life comfortable, and death happy? Be determined then to embrace and hold fast this excellent religion, as the anchor of your hope, would you redeem time.

As a further mean of redeeming time, do to others whatsoever ye would that they should do to you. By making their welfare your own, you will fulfil an important end of your existence. By the cultivation of the friendly and social affections, you will increase your own enjoyments, fulfil the obligations of your various relations and connections, and take the sureft course to meet with the return of kind affections and offices from all with whom you have intercourse. In doing good, you will imitate the Parent of the universe, and the Redeemer of mankind. Time is spent in the best manner, when we live and die not to ourselves, but to the Lord—when we serve his will in our generation. What is this, but to do good in our lives ? « Look not “ every man on his own things; but every man also “ on the things of others.”

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. Of him you will learn the greatest condescenfion and meekness, humility and charity. He was swayed by the purest views of glory to God and friendship to men. He went about doing good. Hence he could appeal, “Father, I have finished the work thou

gavest me to do.” He was intent on doing this work while it was day. His life was full of benevolence. Whatsoever his disciples do is in his name—in imitation of his pattern, in obedience to his authority, influenced by his grace, and with a view to the divine acceptance and glory through him.

Finally, a frequent review of life would lead to the redemption of time. Recollection, self-examination and self-communion are most essential to this purpose. The conduct of life should be a subject of enquiry every day: But it would answer a very valuable end to set apart particular seasons for a more full enquiry into the tenour of our lives, our aims and principles, our present views and exercises to the end that our whole life, whether long or short, may be supremely directed to the use for which it was given.

It should be kept in mind, that the redemption of time involves an habitual and an actual preparation for eternity. Are we bound to an eternal world ? will our state in that world be the consequence of our character and conduct in this ? May any day or hour close our mortal life? We cannot have redeemed time, unless we have acquainted ourselves with God, and are at peace-in other words, are prepared for our change by death, and the judgment which will succeed. This preparation implies that the subject of it is pafied from death to life—that the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus is within him—that he liveth by the faith of the Son of God—that the time past fufficeth to have walked according to the course of this world—and that the rest of his time in the flesh is devoted to God. Should death overtake him at any time, in any manner, he will then enter into the joy of his Lord.

This general or habitual preparation differs, however, from what we understand by a present, actual readiness. Death may come to a good man at an hour of which he is not aware. At the midnight cry, Behold, the bridegroom cometh, the wise virgins were found slumbering, and had occasion to trim

their lamps. Having done this, they were actually ready, as they before were habitually. The exhortation to good men is, Be ye also ready—always ready. Set thy house in order for death. Watch, left coming suddenly be find you

sleeping. Both our fecular and spirital concerns should be kept in order. Before he is aware, temptation from within or without may allure a Christian. He has need to gird up his loins, to be fober, and watch unto prayer.

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