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hortations, because it is written "Ask, and ye shall have; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for every one that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.' Will ye not now, with such encouragement, seek the Lord? Will ye not beseech Him to open the eyes of your understanding, that ye may see the wonderous things of his law? If ye will not, ye must walk in darkness, and stumble and fall; and if ye perish, remember, it will be because ye neglected and refused that great Salvation of which ye were invited to partake. But, as a farther inducement to make you anxious to obtain recovery from the fall, I wish you to consider

3rd. That sinners in their natural state "are altogether become unprofitable"; for, wanting the principle of goodness, nothing really good can proceed from them. They may, indeed, be in some measure useful in their generation, by employing the talents and faculties wherewith they are endowed, for the general advantage of mankind, but they cannot promote the knowledge of God, nor communicate that information with which the creature, who is an heir of immortality, should be acquainted, and

Matt. vii, 7, 8.

which alone can afford him solid happiness and satisfaction amidst this changing scene of things. When the head of the wisest man is laid upon the bed of death, and when those who knew him, admired his wisdom, and commended his schemes and projects, are in a similar situation, their conrtivances for this world will afford them little consolation: On the contrary, if they have any sensibility of conscience at that awful hour, they will be filled with bitter reflections, that for the momentary enjoyments of this frail and transitory life, they forgot their God, and neglected to make provision for their immortal souls. They will remember then, perhaps, that while they boasted of their pa triotism, their bravery, and their independence which, exercised upon Christian principles, are virtues highly commendable, self-love was the spring of all their actions, and, that to please God, and to live to his honor and glory, was But, while the last thing they thought of. men know not how much they are alienated from the life of God, they will care little about the recovery of the Spirit of Christ, which is the only source from whence that, which is really good, can proceed. Of" all holy desires, all good counsels, and all just works" God is the Author, and whenever we do that which

is pleasing in his sight, he must work in us "to will and to do of his good pleasure."* This doctrine, though very plainly expressed in the Scripture, I know, is objected to, on the supposition that it makes man a mere machine; and indeed it does, and this is a point that I particularly wish to enforce, for what can be more suitable to the dignity of the creature, than that he should be an instrument in the hand of his Creator to fulfil his will, especially of such a Creator, as the God of the Christians, who is infinitely wise, holy, just, and good. The sin and folly of man consist in this, that he chooses to follow the desires of his own heart, rather than to become this machine; and all God's controversy with the self-willed rebel is to make him yield to that grace, which is designed to conquer and subdue him. Happily, we know that Christ, whose will is one with the Father's, "is able to subdue all things unto himself;"+ we therefore earnestly recommend you to draw near unto God by him, and to beseech him to put his laws into your minds, and to write them in your hearts, that so you may be filled with all the fruits of righteousness, and be marked as the peculiar people of God, whom he hath

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purified to himself, and made zealous of good works. That this may be your case, my Brethren, may God of his infinite mercy grant for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.






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