Imágenes de páginas

nature to go to, ahd have the glorious achievements of condescending and redeeming lore to commemorate this day?

The Lord requires as to perform the duties of this day with a frame of mind suitable to the spirit, freedtarh, and liberty of the gospels guarding against she servile frame of spirit which the Je'vs had in the obs.*v.irtce of the duties of the la.v: For "we are not come unto the mount that burned with sire, and was terrible to behold ; but unto mount Zion, the city of the living G.>d.w In the service of this day, we ouijht to keep up impressions of God as most accefsiWe, f imiliar to u9, and dwelling in our own nature, and as one that doth not fo much regard our outward persormances, as the inward frame and sincerity of our hearts. The Pharisees pretended to great strictness abmit the outward observance of the Sabbath: (and hence they presumed frequ ntly to censure Christ and his disciples practices on this day) but they were strangers to inward sincerity, and love to God. It is the willing mind and honest he art, in Sabbath persormances, that God chiesly regard.-, not a pharisaical strictness;

7. Being " in the Spirit on the Lord's day" implies, the having of the graces of the Spirit in a more lively exercise this day than ordinary 1 And theresore we ought this day solemnly to invite the " north and southwinds of the Spirit to come and blow uponouf gardens, that the spices thervof may flow out j" and that, particularly in all our approaches to God, we may be possest •with a holy srwe and reverence of God's majesty and greatness, and a deep sense of our own baseness and naughtiness, and have our saith acting vigorously upon God's goodness and mercy in and through Chritt, out hearts melting with evangelical contrition and repentance, oar love add sp ritual desires'flaming forth in all our acts of devotion; nay all o-ur graces' and assections should be this day elevated more than ordinary to God's special honour and glory.

8. A more than ordinary spiritual and heavenly frame of foul, suited to the work of this day. Since this day is wholly dedicated to God, and spiritual duties'

Vol. IV. P ara are the only work of it, our frame upon it should be more heavenly and divine, than upon any other day, or when going about the duties of God's worship at any. other time; we should this day be much viewing.- and^admiring, with thanksulness, the dying " love of Christ,", and the glorious " work of redemption" completed this day by his resurrection. We should: bediving this day abojse the world, and within view of heaven, making this day a little emblem and prelude of th*f.e.v«s•-: laAingjfest of the saints above.. m^ij rot boO vd

'g. It imports, that there is something of an universal sanctity and holiness peculiarly requisite upon this dajMi Now, this sanctity must be universal, with respect to ourselves, with respect to the day, and with respect to the duties of it. 7- - xi'' »; b^imc

1. With respect to ourselves; all our thoughts, words and actions this day, should be God's in a special manner; all that we are, all that we have, all we can do, should be wholly devoted to God's worship and service on this day, Isa. lviii. 13. God would not only haveour hands tied from working, but alsu our tongues from talking, and our minds from thinking on worldly things this day. . t'i.-. •a:0w„ll.i!?

2. With respect to the day; we should spend the whole of it in holy duties, either public, private, or secret. It is not for an hour or two only, that we must study to be specially holy, but through the whole day; .we should count every moment of Sabbath time precious, and susser none of it to be lost that we can save, still aiming to be doing something for God and our own soolsi • a - n.i-.c,- .

3. With respect to the duties of the day ; we should esteem them all, and make conscience of them all, since they all have a divine stamp upon them ; reading, hear-, ing, prayer, praises, communicating, meditating, conserring, catechising, giving alms, &c. -God is to be found in every one of these duties, and theresore none of' them is to be neglected: And, when we sind him not in one of them, we must seek him in another ; and, if we conscientiously go the round of duties, we shall surely " sind him whom our souls love," Cant. iii. 4.t


^i^^ 'TJtisi iexpreffion, of being " in the Spirit on the Lord's day," imports the persorming the duties of iif With pure and spiritual ends, viz. •* to glorify God, arid ehjoy' 4iim." God is the sole object of our worship, and he must be the principal end of it too. In ottr- worship we must seek him, Heb. xi. 6. nofiour. selves. "It'iS natural sor man to worship God for' sets ends; we;often persorm duties, not only to be "seen and'esteemed of men, but also to be seen and valued by God for them, Isa. lviii 3. " Wheresore havBl!wi« . fasted, (say they) and thou seest not ?" &c. They did not persorm duties to glorify God, but to obtain a-re. wfcrdVfoYttliernselves, and have a righteousness of their o*wn to" found and plead upon. Let us study to be denied to our own duties, and guard against a selsish and legal spirit in our Sabbath-days persormances. This wilt be a dead sly to spoil the ointment, and will keep ourt best- duties from being savoury to God. Let us study then to persorm them all <' in newness of spirit, andirtot in the oldness of the letter," Rom. vii. 6/-iiLe|v' ui Wfe" them 'all as means for bringing God and our fouls together, as means for obtaining communion and sellowship with God, and holding special intercourse With" hftff; Which is th« only way to sit us for glorifying God both here and hereaster, .wivb v on 'u is 10 dlodw

iium «w isib ,i!n - •. '.y•' -«)

. . .i . .

•siq •mii lijtJut' .. . '. -. '..'.

'9** "*' TMDIR ECTIO N II.';

100 ons boO „': o. .... . , .' w

Concerning the holv duties requifite upon the Lord's Day.

bluoiftW i ve'.

THE'dutie* necessary upon this day, are either publit> private, or secret.

I (hall not meddle with the duties of public persons as such on the Sabbath, or what is specially incumbent upon magistrates or ministers upon this day, in their public stations, but shall insist only upon those dutiesrequired of all Christians in common. .

^ueji. I. What are those public duties required of us upon the Lord^s day - - . ;; --;;" yi.'r..

-!-"^- P 2 Ans

^}jftns- fjbey pre those which we are bound to perform in the pubTic ;ssemblies of sioJ's people: and indeed the Sabbath is institute chiesly for the solemn persormance pf the duties of God's worship, in the public meetings- of his people: for the Lord hath a special delight therein j "he loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob; and wherever two or three are gathered in his name, he will be in the midst of them," "Why? It is in the assemblies of God's people ferpub-, lie. worsliip, that God receiveth the highest praises from u«; and hence the Psalmist saith, " I will give the* thanks in the great congregation: I will praise thc« «mpng much people.—-And in h't9 temple doth every ona speak of his glory," Psal. xxxv. 18. Psal. xxix. 9. And as in public worship God receiveth the highest praises, fo there it is he bestoweth the richest mercies, Psal. l<v, 4. "Blessed is the man whom thou chusest, and causeft to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts; we shall be satissied with the goodness of thy house," &e> O. what good things are contained in that word, the

* " goodness of thy house !'' there is pardon, peace, love, grace, lise, light, strength, comsort, &c, No*, the public duties of the Sabbath, recorded in scriptOte, which God's people ought to m&et and assemble' that day for, are various; and particularly, they are to meet together for reading and expounding the word i of Qod \ sot preaching, hearing, praying, praising* partaking of the sacraments, collecting for the poor^ &cfor al) which we may see Lev. xxiii. 3. Psalm xcii. Isa. lxvi. 23. Luke iv. 16. Acts xiii. iJf^lffsM* ''44. xv. 21. xvi. 13. xx. 7. r. Cor. xvi. u. But partieularly, '".'-'I 3-•^'i">

K Hearing the word publicly read and "preached with reverence and attention, is a principal duty on the Sabbath; nay, our lise depends upon it, Deut. xxxii. 46. 47. It is the great mean God hath appointed sor the conveision of fouls, Rom. x. 14. 17. Whatever

... men think of it, it is the powersul instrument of our salvation, Rom. i. 16. The waters of the sanctuary run only through the channels of the word; the mines of

'-'jjrdce are found only in these climates where the gospelpal-fan fhJnee. The Lord, if he pleased, could jmme

hath determined to honour his word in this work, a* is stain in Lydia's case, Acts xvi 9. }o. 14. Reading the word and sermons at home is good; but hearing the ;.W9S<jipreached is the ordinary mean God. hath appointed and; promised to bless for conversion i A^tf if thJs h$ flighted) or prove inessectual, no other way can be contrived for it, as we are told, Luke xvi. 29. ii' T(3fo thaf though a glorisied saint or angel should come down from .Heaven-, and preach upon the beauty of Christ, .Ænd glofj oi heaven, in the most lively and demcjtrsttatWe manner \ yet, if a preached gospel do not persuade i.Cpners, neither would that. Or, though a dair.ned soul -{hou}d come up from hell, and preach the evil of sin, v»s4 torment6 of hell, io the most pathetic manner; ^yet.neither would that persuade, if the word do-it not.

Why, the one is God's instituted mean, the ether ndt. loJjet us then have au high esteem of God's ordinance, r. *n£ embrace all occasions for attending it. "Be swift ^♦©51^6^%jam. i. 19.. Let none dare to. count that mean, &itH&k>-"fit despicable, which the wise God hath iriftitut.eUdhlo: save souls, i Cor. i. 21. "It pleased God, by the ?i.4*oWhfles> of preaching, to save them that believe." i^s&ii4? fe0^ comes believing but by hearing? Reading logfiad .serrriQns (as one fays} ia like milk cold out of the .-;i4Uh, but preaching is like milk warm from the breast* which h iar more nourishing to the child. Let us al; wayfij- then, as "new born babea, desire this milk, that - may both live and grow thereby," 1 Pet. ii. 2. .rr; -li- Another of the public duties of the Sabbath h

public prayers with the congregation. t.-y Prayer is a principal part of God's worship, and) M-, theresore ia frequently put sor the whole, Zeciu viii. .. aau ;Acts xvi. 2 j. Hence God's temple of old rolMfas called the house of prayer. Public prayer is molt • -vjMceskry for averting judgments, obtaining blessings, -ij^aHi P*iejifl:vj<18 love and unity among Christians;'-a.solemn owning the God whom we serve in *t ;the face. of.the world, and so highly glorisies God. .lotyhe DojuiBtisuLLQrd is well pleased to see many beg



« AnteriorContinuar »