Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

ations of your life evince by your conduct this characteristic temper of a Christian. Are you in prosperity? Walk humbly with

your God. Confess, that it is he, who of his own loving kindness giveth you all things richly to enjoy. Confess, with the Patriarch Jacob, O Lord, I am not worthy of the least of these thy mercies (e). Let the Giver be glorified in his gifts. Now je are full, now ye are rich. Be it fo. Who maketh thee to differ from another? And what hast thou that thou didst not receive ? Now if thou didst receive it; why dost thou glory as if thou hads not received it (f)? The more distinguished is your profperity, the more earnest be your solicitude to become meek, humble, and sober-minded. Remember that he who lifteth up, can cast down; that he who bestoweth can take away. Reinember that thou hast here no continuing city. Look at that withering fower; and behold how perishable are all the glories which derive their nutriment from earth. Has adversity overtaken you ? Have trials and afflictions, and sicknesses clouded your days ? Waik humbly with your

God. Humble yourself under his chastising hand. It is the Lord, let him do what seemeth him good (8). Reflect on his unbounded wisdom, his in(e) Gen. xxxii 16. (f) Cor. iv. 7, 8. (8) Sam iii. 18.

exhauf

[ocr errors]

X 4

exhaustible loving-kindness. What! mall we receive good at the hand of God; and fall we not receive evil (B)? Knoweth he not what is fittest for you? Loverh he not the work of His own hand, the soul for which he gave His Son unto death? Verily be chastiseth us for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. And although no chastening for the prefent secmeth to be joyous, but grievous ; neverthclifs afterwards it yieldeth the peaceable fruits of righteousness, unto them which are exercised thereby (i), and walk humbly with their God? Finally, observe His laws with reverence; and humbly render equal obedience to them all. Presume not to think that you may venture to neglect any commandment, which God has pronounced. Dost thou refuse submission to any one of His injunctions, and sayest thou that thou walkest humbly with Him? Be diligent in frequenting the public worship of your Lord; and receive His word with humility. Slight not any opportunity of attending the holy communion, in humble and thankful remembrance of your crucified Master. In every thing by prayer and fupplication, public and private, let jour requests be made known unto God (j). And humbly offer up to Him all your petitions . (!) Job, ii. 10. (1) Hebr. xii. 10, 11. (;) Pliil. iv. 6.

in the name of the appointed Mediator and Intercessor, Jesus Christ.

[ocr errors]

III. It appears then that to the Jew and to the Christian the fum and substance of religion has ever been the same.

To do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God in grateful dependence and universal obedience; this it has been, this it is, to be a servant of the Most High. The duties of justice and of mercy, duties placed within the fphere of human reason, were developed in the Scriptures of the Old Testament to the Jew. Before the Christian they stand arrayed in brighter radiance borrowed from the precepts and the example of his Lord. To the Jew the general obligation of walking humbly with his God was unfolded. The Chriftian, surveying it in clearer lustre, refers the accession of light to his Saviour. But as to the greatest of the events in the divine economy to which that general obligation pointed, the Jew was comparatively in darkness. He little understood the method, by which expiation was to be made for guilt. He looked for justification to his burnt offerings and facrifices; to the blood of bulls and of goats, which could never take away sin(k). Through (k) Hibr. x. oth

the

the veil of types and emblems he discerned not the true atonement. He had heard of one who should save Ifrael. But he looked to deliverance from worldly foes, to preeminence over prostrate kingdoms.

He had heard of One who should redeem Israel from all bis iniquities (?). But he looked only to the fuller establishment of the Mofaic law. He was assured that the Redeemer should be stricken for the transgression of his people; that he should pour out his soul unto death; that he should make his soul an offering for fin: that he should bear the fins of many,

and make intercession for the transgressors (m!. But pride stupified his heart. Vain of his exclusive privileges, he deemed them all-sufficient. Averse to the righteousness of God, he stood upon the deeds of the law. Dazzled by phantoms of temporal grandeur, he shut his eyes against the image of a suffering Melfiah. To the Christian these mysteries are revealed; these shadows are become realities. He knows that by the deeds, whether of the ceremonial or of the moral law, pall no flesh be justified in the fight of God. He renounces all claim to merit even in the least imperfect of his works; and pleads for pardon and justification solely through the propitiatory (1) Psalm cxxx. 8. (m) Isaiah, li. II

facrifice

sacrifice of the Son of God. In Christ Jesus, contemplated by the

eye

of faith on the cross, he beholds wisdom, and righteousness and fanctification and redemption ; that, as it is written, he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord (n).

Survey then, my brethren, your advantages. From him, to whom much is given, much hall be required 0). Have you pondered this rule? Have you considered the consequences of falling short when tried by this standard? Most conspicuously hath God shewed you what is good ; what he requires you to believe, and what he requires you to perform. Have

you

observed then to do juftly? Are you upright and faithful in all your words . and in all your actions, as justice indispensably demands ? You may forget justice: but God will not forget it. You

may

refuse to render to others that which belongs to them: but he will render to you according to your works. God, is not a man, that he should lie. Hath be Spoken, and fall be not do it? The Lord knoweth how to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgement to be punishedip). He will surely fulfil his word, he will accomplish his threatenings. The hope of the unjust man pe(n) 1 Cor. i. 30, 3:.

( ) Luke, xii. 48.

(0) Numb. xxiii. 19. 2 Pet. ii. g.

risheth.

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »