Page images

If he did not plead for us, we could not, we durst not, offer a word in our own behalf. If he was not on our part, engaged to keep us night and day, our enemies would soon be too hard for us. May we, therefore, give him the glory due to his name, and cleave to him, and trust in him, alone.

2. How safe are the people, of whom he undertakes the care! While his eye is upon them, his ear open to their prayer, and his arm of power stretched out for their protection ; while he remembers that word of promise, upon which he himself has caused them to hope; while he retains that faithfulness, which, encouraged them to commit their souis to him, it is impossible that any weapon or stratagem formed against them can prevail. There are many, it is true, who will rise up against them, but God is for them, and with them, a very present help in trouble *. They are full of wants and fears, and, in themselves, liable to many charges; but since Jesus is their head, their security, their intercessor, no needful good shall be withheld from them, no charge admitted against them, none shall condemn them, for it is God, him, self, who justifies the believer in Jesus.

* Pl. xlvi. 1.

3. If these things be so, how much are they to be pitįed, who hear of them, without being affected or influenced by them? Will you always be content with hearing ? Oh taste and fee, that the Lord is good * ! Should you at last be separated from those with whom you now join in public worship; Tould you see them admitted into the kingdom of God, and you yourselves be thrust out; your present advantages would then prove an aggravation of your guilt and misery. As yet, there is room. Strive to enter, while the gate of mercy remains open. Think of the solemnities of that great day. Many will then be condemned, though they, who believe in the Son of God, will be justified. Consider who will condemn them, God himSelf f. From his inquisition there can be no retreat; from his sentence there can be no appeal. And consider what the condemnation will be! A final exclusion from his favour ; a never-ceasing sense of his awful displeasure! A state of eternal horror and despair, without mitigation, without the smallest ray of hope. Can you deliberately give up all claim to happiness, and determine * Pf. xxxiv. 8, + Ibid. 1. 6.


to rush upon the thick boljes of God's buckler *, to defy his power, and to dare his threatenings, rather than forego the transitory and delusive pleasures of sin? And can you do this, with the gospel founding in our ears? May the Lord prevent it! However, observe, you are once more warned, once more invited. If now at last, after so many delays, so much perverseness, on your part, you will honestly and earnestly seek him, he will be found of you. But if you perfift in your obstinacy, your condemnation will be inevitable and sure.

* Job xv. 26.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]



Rev. v. 9. -Thouấhast redeemed us to God, by thy blood

[out of every kindred, and tongue, and peopeople, and nation.] T HE extent, variety and order of the

I creation, proclaim the glory of God. He is likewise, Maximus in minimis. The smallest of the works, that we are capable of examining, such for instance as the eye, or the wing, of a little infect, the creature of a day, are stamped with an inimitable impression of his wisdom and power. Thus in his written word, there is a greatness considering it as a whole, and a beauty and accuracy


in the smaller parts, analogous to what we observe in the visible creation, and answerable to what, an enlightened and humble mind, may expect in a book, which bears the character of a divine revelation. A single verse, a single clause, when viewed (if I may so speak) in the microscope of close meditation, is often found to contain a fulness, a world of wonders. And though a connected and comprehensive acquaintance with the whole •fcripture, be desirable and useful, and is no less the privilege, than the duty, of those who have capacity and time at their own disposal, to acquire it; yet, there is a gracious accommodation to the weakness of some perfons, and the circumstances of others. So that in many parts of scripture, whatever is immediately necessary to confirm our faith, to animate or regulate our practice, is condensed into a small compass, and comprized in a few verses : yea, sometimes a single sentence, when unfolded and examined, will be found to contain all the great principles of duty and comfort. Such is the sentence which I have now read to you. In the Mefpah, it is inserted in the grand chorus taken from the 12th and 13th verses of this


« PreviousContinue »