Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies, by his Spirit that dwelleth in you." What, nevertheless, is the practical inference therefrom stated in the very next words? “ Therefore, brethren, we are debtors not to the flesh, to live after the flesh, for if

ye

live after the flesh,

ye

shall die:” consequently it is still possible, and plainly conceived, and supposed, and stated to be so, even after this communication of the Spirit, to live, notwithstanding, according to the flesh: and still true, that, if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die.“ We are debtors ;” our obligation, our duty imposed upon us by this gift of the Spirit, is no longer to live after the flesh'; but on the contrary, through the Spirit so given, to do that which, without it, we could not have done, to “ mortify the deeds of the body.” Thus following the suggestions of the Spirit, ye shall live: for “ many as are led by the Spirit of God,” as many as yield themselves to its guidance and direction, “ they are the sons of God.”

as

To conclude the subject. The difference between those who succeed, and those who

fail in their Christian course, between those who attain, and those who do not attain salvation is this : They may both feel equally the weakness of their nature, the existence and the power of evil propensities within them ; but the former, by praying with their whole heart and soul, and that perseveringly, for spiritual assistance, obtain it; and, by the aid so obtained, are enabled to withstand, and do, in fact, withstand their evil propensities; the latter sink under them. I will not say that all are comprised under this description ; for neither are all included in St. Paul's account of the matter, from which our discourse set out; but I think that it represents the general condition of Christians, as to their spiritual state, and that the greatest part of those who read this discourse, will find that they belong to one side or other of the alternative here stated.

SERMON XXXI.

THE DESTRUCTION OF THE CANAANITES.

Joshua, X. 40.

So Joshua smote all the country of the hills,

and of the south, and of the vale, and of the springs, and all their kings : he left none remaining, but utterly destroyed all that breathed, as the Lord God of Israel commanded.

I

HAVE known serious and well disposed

Christians much affected with the accounts, which are delivered in the Old Testament, of the Jewish wars and dealings with the inhabitants of Canaan. From the Israelites first setting foot in that country, to their complete establishment in it, which takes

up

the whole book of Joshua, and part of the book of Judges, we read, 'it must be confessed, of massacres and desolation unlike what are practised now a-days between nations at war, of cities and districts laid waste, of the inhabitants being totally destroyed, and this, as it it alleged, in the history, by the authority and command of Almighty God. Some have been induced to think such accounts incredible, inasmuch as such conduct could never, they say, be authorized by the good, and merciful Governor of the universe.

I intend in the following discourse to consider this matter, so far as to show, that these transactions were calculated for a beneficial purpose, and for the general advantage of mankind; and, being so calculated, were not inconsistent either with the justice of God, or with the usual proceedings of divine Providence.

Now the first and chief thing to be observed is, that the nations of Canaan were destroyed for their wickedness. In proof of this point, I produce the 18th chapter of Leviticus, the 24th and the following verses. Moses, in this chapter, after laying down prohibitions against brutal and abominable vices, proceeds in the 24th verse thus — “ Defile not yourselves in any of these things, for in all these the nations are defiled, which I cast out before you, and the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants, Ye shall therefore keep my statutes and my judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations, neither

any

of

your own nation, nor any stranger that sojourneth among you : for all these abominations have the men of the land done which were before you, and the land is defiled ; that the land vomit not you out also, when ye defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you. For whosoever shall commit any of these abominations, even the souls that commit them shall be cut off from amongst their people. Therefore shall ye keep my ordinances that ye commit not any of these abominable customs, which were committed before

and

you; that you defile not yourselves therein.” Now the facts disclosed in this passage

« AnteriorContinuar »