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headed, felt an inward joy and support, in being able to appeal to the heart-searching God, “ Thou art my truft from my youth.” Thus good Hezekiah ; “Re“ member how I have walked before thee in truth.” What unspeakable consolation did Paul the aged find in this; “ I have fought a good fight, I have kept the “ faith?” Old age can find no consolation in reflecting on the accumulation of wealth, or having come to great worldly honour, or on having subdued kingdoms. Riches flee away. Honour abideth not. The glory of man is a fading flower. But “righteousness

is immortal. The good man shall be satisfied from “ himself.” His joy and treasure no man can take from him: It is the testimony of a good conscience. “ He that walketh uprightly walketh surely." When his flesh and heart fail, conscious integrity is his support; « God is the strength of my heart, and my poris tion for ever.

The work of righteousness is peace, " and the effect of righteousness is quietness and assur. “ ance forever."

David in his old age reflected also upon the great goodness of God to him through the past stages and circumstances of his life; mercies outward and spiritual. He called on his soul and all within him to pay the tribute which these mercies demanded. He called on pious friends to unite with him in paying this grateful tribute. God had strengthened him when weak and feeble, raised him from obscurity to the summit of honour, extricated him in great temptation and danger, and made precious promises to his house. In his prosperity and elevation he did not forget his benefactor and deliverer, as is often the case; but ascribed to him all the praise. “ In God is all my salvation and

glory, my refuge is in God.” Taught by experience, he declared, “ I will hope continually, and yet praise 66 him more and more. Whatever dangers might surround him, whoever were his enemies, this was his language, “ God is our refuge and strength, a very

present help in trouble. Therefore will we not fear.”


The wondrous works of God, which he had hither. to declared, were more especially the providences by which he himself had been preserved and exalted. By resolving to go in the strength of the Lord God, he profefseth that God had been his strength and trust. His prayer, that God would not forsake him in old

age, proceeded upon the recollection that God had been his help and

shield, had guided and influenced him by his unerring counsel and good Spirit-that Spirit whose departure David so much apprehended, when he had infamously fallen; for the wonted help and comfort of which he interceded with unutterable grcanings. “Uphold

Uphold me with thy free Spirit: Re“ store to me the joy of thy salvation. Create a clean “ heart, and renew a right spirit within me.

Caft me “ not away from thy presence. Take not thy holy “ Spirit from me."

In some verses following the text, he makes men, țion of the fore troubles through which he had paffed, that he might praise his Almighty helper and Redemer. He had been restored from fickness, which had brought him to the gates of death. The God whom he served from his youth, had been present to comfort him, when bereaved of the tenderest earthly connections, and strengthened him with strength in his soul. His familiar friends betrayed and reproached him. A dangerous conspiracy was formed in his own house. But neither open enemies, nor unfaithful friends, nor domestic treason could shake. his trust in God. He had many a severe conflict with distrust.

“ Hath God “ forgotten to be gracious ? and will he be favourable “ no more?” Troubles without, and wasting sickness, together with the mystery of providence in the profperity of the wicked and affliction of the righteous, made him utter the language of despondence. Never, perhaps, was his gloom greater, than when he was cut off from the privileges of the sanctuary. But his desponding thoughts were always composed by recollecting the years of the right hand of the most HIGH. Long and great experience of God's covenant love and faithfulness taught him to check any misgivings which sometimes arose. “ Why art thou cast down, “O my soul! Wait on God, hope in his word. All

my expectation is from him.” Most feelingly and affectionately does he describe the benefits of religious trust. Psalm xl. at the beginning. “I waited pa6 tiently for the Lord, and he inclined unto me, and “ heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an “ horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my foot

upon a rock. And he hath put a new song into my “ mouth. Many shall see it, and fear, and turn to the “ Lord. The angel of the Lord encampeth round

about them that fear him, and delivereth them. “ This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and “ saved him from all his fears.” His experience from youth to age taught him to say, “ How excellent is “ thy loving-kindness, O God; therefore the children “ of men put their trust under the shadow of thy

wings.” From his own example and experience he recommends, “ Commit thy way unto the Lord: 6 Trust also in him, and he shall bring it to pass.

Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him. Fret “ not thyself, because of him that profpereth in his

way. I have been young, and now am old; yet “ have I not seen the righteous forsaken. The steps 6 of a good man are ordered by the Lord. Though “ he fali, he shall not be utterly cast down: For the Lord upholdeth him with his hand."

You see that those who have most attentively observed the divine footsteps, who have had the longest and largest experience of the care and faithfulness of God, recollect paft providences with pious joy-the providence which has been over their infancy, childhood and youth, manhood and decay ;-amidft innumerable hazards, temptations and afflictions ; protecting and providing for them, delivering them from

evil, or upholding them in six troubles and in seven ; keeping them from, or succouring them in, dangerous temptations, or restoring them from their declensions. They especially call to mind, with lively praise, the grace of redemption, the privileges of the gospel, a good work hopefully begun and carrying on in them; the honour God hath done them, in making them any way useful in the world. They give him the praise, if their counsel, prayers, endeavours or example have guarded or reclaimed any from sin; or guided, encouraged or confirmed any in virtue and piety. They give him the glory of any experience of the comforts of religion, and go on their way rejoicing. Reflections on a life devoted to God are a source of strong confolation at all times; but peculiarly in the evil days of nature in decline, in which is no pleasure. What source of disquiet, at that period, to review neglected opportunities? a price once enjoyed, but misimproved ? abused. mercies, incorrigibleness under correction; health, reason, strength, means, acceptable seasons, divine influences, flighted and wasted? The only and wretched refuge, in such case, is, to fly, if pofsíble, from one's own reflections. The just, whose path has shined more and more, from the morning to the evening of life, have a peaceful review. of the past, and hope for the future. For such some might dare, to die.

Secondly, David, reflecting on his early choice of religion, and his improvement of life, reflecting also on great experience of God's providential care, resolv. ed to persevere in the course of piety to the end of his days. I will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only. Such are the resolutions arising from a review of a long life conducted by the principles and hopes of religion.

Those who have walked with God from their child. hood and youth up, calling to mind his past mercies,

can apply to him with humble confidence to sustain and comfort their declining years. “ By thee I have “ been holden up from the womb. Thou art my trust “ from my youth. Cast me not off in the time of old

age; forsake me not when my strength faileth. 1 “ will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more

and more.”

The aged fit alone in the world. The associates of their youth are generally dead. Of the few that are left some are at a distance. They have no intercourse with them, and but seldom hear from them. They cannot have the wonted aid from contemporaries labouring under the fame languour and decay. The aged are not company for younger life, nor these for them. They consider themselves, and are often regarded, as a burden. The earth is peopled with a new and unknown fett of inhabitants, by whom the former are forgotten. Decay of body and mind advanceth.There is no pleasure in the things which refreshed and delighted their youth and manhood. Desire and fortitude fail. Fears are in the way. Every care is burdenfome. The world is willing to part with them.the grave calls for them.

What occafion hath age for the confolations of God? How sweet the recollection of his loving-kindnesses, which have been ever of old ? Such recollection is an incentive to go in his strength, and make mention of his righteousness, even his only. They have experienced the mighty power of divine grace, in being created anew in Christ Jefus. All their strength against inward corruption and temptation from without is still of God. He is faithful. He never forfaketh his own work. Though their outward man decayeth, their inward man is renewed day by day.

The righteousnefs of the făints is that which is by faith in the Mediator. Ascribing to him their justification and calling of God, they constantly look to him fór righteousness and strength. A sense of their own

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