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new heavens and a new earth, wherein | sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual dwelleth righteousness. He will gather to-body. There is a natural body, and there B2 gether in one the children of God that were spiritual body.” scattered abroad. “O Death! he will be thy Secondly. Here is the model to which plagues. O Grave! he will be thy destruc-, will be conformed: “It shall be fashioned tion: repentance shall be hid from his eyes." | like unto his glorious body." The compare “For this corruptible must put on incorrup son does not regard his body in the days of tion, and this mortal must put on immortality. his flesh.” It was then possessed of all our So when this corruptible shall have put on sinless qualities and feelings. But, after his incorruption, and this mortal shall have put | resurrection and ascension, it was deprived on immortality, then shall be brought to pass of every thing animal and humiliating. the saying that is written, Death is swallowed was incapable of hunger or weariness. I up in victory. O Death, where is thy sting? I could move with the ease of thought, and O Grave, where is thy victory? The sting was invalnerable and eternal as the soul. k of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the was glorified. A glimpse of this glory was law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us given by way of anticipation to the dizeiples the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” in the transfiguration, when “ his face shift
III. His final DESTINY. “Who shall change as the sun, and his raiment was white as the our vile body, that it may be fashioned like light.” In this glory he appeared to San: unto his glorious body, according to the work- he shone " above the brightness of the sun," ing whereby he is able even to subdue all and struck him blind. When John saw hi. things unto himself." Three things are ob- his countenance was as the sun shineth n servable.
| his strength,” and though he had been once First. The subject changed. “This vile familiar with him, and had leaned often body." Much of the wisdom and power of his bosom, he fell at his feet as dead. How God is displayed in the formation of the hu- glorious must that body be in which he now man frame. And when we consider the mul- governs the world! In whieh he will judge tiplicity and delicacy of its parts; the con- the universe! In which we shall hold all our nexion of its members; the proportion and intercourse with Deity for ever! Yet a 60 adaptation of its organs to each other, and to formity to this glory is not a privilege to the whole; we need not wonder that David great for our hope. As sure as we to me should say, “I will praise thee; for I am semble the Saviour in disposition, we stai fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous be like him in person: and the same mind are thy works; and that my soul knoweth will be followed with the same body. right well. My substance was not hid from Thirdly. We are informed of the omnipa thee, when I was made in secret, and curi- tent agency by which the work is to be ao ously wrought in the lowest parts of the complished; « according to the working earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, whereby he is able even to subdue all things yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my unto himself.” It is obvious that such an members were written, which in continuance novation is nothing less than a miracle, a were fashioned, when as yet there was none the most stupendous of all miracles; and of them. How precious also are thy thoughts therefore that it demands in him, who 15 W unto me, O God! How great is the sum of effect it, something more than kindre them !" In this sense, it is not a vile body. “ We cannot by taking thought add one o
But when we view it as degraded by the bit to our stature." We cannot replace Fall; as prostituted to the purposes of sin; leaf; or revive a blade of grass. Oh!il! when we think of the sordidness and lowness could bring back the dead if cries and te of its appetites and infirmities; when we could be heard-how soon would our breach view it under various kinds and degrees of be repaired, and our wounds healed! disease, requiring all the interest of reward power is not ours; it is not ours by na or vigour of friendship, to discharge towards it is not ours by dispensation. But it a fellow-creature the common duties of hu- to the Saviour. «He is the mighty, manity; when we are compelled by the ap- He has a power given him over all fest
ГТ proach of putrefaction to bury our dead, how-l is Lord of the dead, as well as of the i ever once loved and valued, out of our sight; | And he fainteth not, neither is weary: when we go and open a grave, and witness reanimation and organization of mill the intolerable disgrace of our nature; we dead bodies will not exhaust him. He acknowledge with what propriety it is called do infinitely more. He is “able event " the body of our humiliation.” But this body due all things unto himself." is not to be annihilated, though reduced-it. From this subject we should lear will be only changed. “So also is the resur- 1 to be thankful for the discoveries rection of the dead. It is sown in corrup- tion. The notions of the heathen tion; it is raised in incorruption: it is sown phers, even concerning the importa in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown soul, were very confined and sconto in weakness; it is raised in power: it is it is to be observed that they never
z to sub
hould learn, First
overies of revela ne heathen philoso
imm ortality of the and confused; and they never laid stress
upon it, as a principle and a motive. But the not parted with them for ever. Thy brother, resurrection of the body never entered their thy sister, thy child, thy mother will rise minds. The history and experience of man- again. "Be not ignorant concerning them kind had furnished no ground for such an ex- which are asleep, that you sorrow not, even pectation. They had always followed the as others which have no hope. For if we bebody to the grave, and had seen it return to lieve that Jesus died, and rose again, even so its original element. The doctrine of its re them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring vival and transformation was so new at with him." Athens, that the preaching of it by the Apos. Lastly. Are you children of the resurtle was turned into mockery. But the poor-rection? Let me earnestly entreat you not est and most illiterate Christian can open his to elude the inquiry. For though the resurBible, and say, “I know that my Redeemer rection, as an event, is universal; as a priviliveth, and that he shall stand at the latter lege it is limited. “All that are in their day upon the earth: And though after my graves shall hear his voice, and come forth; skin worms destroy this body, yet in my they that have done good unto the resurrecflesh shall I see God: whom I shall see for tion of life; but they that have done evil myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not unto the resurrection of damnation." And another; though my reins be consumed can that be called a deliverance that raises within me."
a rnan from a bad state, and consigns him to Secondly; observe the importance the a worse? This will be the case with the Scripture attaches to the doctrine of the re- wicked and the worldly; this will be the case surrection. With what severity does the with all those who have not been raised from Apostle speak of those who endeavour to ex- the death of sin to the life of righteousness. plain it away metaphorically; and " said the The pit of corruption will resign its charge resurrection is past already, and overturned into the pit of destruction. O dreadful doom ! the faith of some.” The Gospel certainly Those bodies for which you have disregarded admits of an intermediate state between death your souls; those bodies upon which you and the resurrection; but whenever the bless- have expended all your time and attention; edness of the future world is spoken of, it is, those bodies which you have nursed in sickwith few exceptions, placed not immediately ness, and pampered in health—those bodies after death, but after the resurrection. “ Thou -death will surrender to the worms; and shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the resurrection to the flames. the just. If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. I am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed to him against that day. A
DISCOURSE LXXIV. crown of righteousness, which the righteous Judge shall give me at that day, and not to me only, but to all them that love his appear DANIEL; OR, CONSTANCY IN ing." It would be unnecessary to multiply
RELIGION. passages to prove the remark. But does not
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was all this imply, that whatever the intermedi
signed, he went into his house; and his winate state may be, compared with the present,
dows being open in his chamber toward Jeit is a defective one compared with the final
rusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three state of the believer?--And it cannot be
times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks otherwise. Man was imbodied in his ori
before his God, as he did aforetime.—Dan. ginal creation; and so he will be in his ulti
vi. 10. mate condition. Till the resurrection, he wants an essential part of human nature; 1 | In a day of rebuke and blasphemy, in and a medium of connexion and intercourse which we see so many of an infidel and pro with material things, from which a large pro- Aigate character, and so few, even of those portion of the happiness of our compound be- who profess the Gospel, adorning the doctrine ing results.
of God our Saviour in all things, it is peculiThirdly. Let this truth be always com- arly pleasing and useful to be able to contembined with the thought of death. Remember plate an instance of genuine, decisive, imparit in view of your own dissolution; and as tial, persevering, unrebukable religion before you look towards the grave, and tremble, God and the Father. take courage, and drink in the heavenly in-! And such an one we have in the example telligence which the Saviour communicates: of Daniel. He had doubtless his infirmities: * I am the resurrection and the life: he that “ for there is not a just man upon earth that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet doeth good and sinneth not:" but nothing is shall he live. And whosoever liveth, and be alleged against him. This is the more relieveth in me, shall never die."
markable, since the sacred writers freely Remember it when you are called to lose mention the faults as well as the excellences your pious friends and relations. You have of good men; and I do not remember that any other individual, recorded in the Scrip- ledge old ones: while we implore deliverance, tures, has entirely escaped censure.
we should be grateful for alleviations and supBut let us attend to the words which I have ports. I am sorry to say, that this is too comread, and in which we have to consider monly neglected. We are very selfish; and THE EMPLOYMENT OF DANIEL—THE CIRCUM-| it appears even in our devotional services. We STANCES OF THE ACTION—AND THE KNOW- are too backward to every duty of religion; LEDGE THAT ENHANCED THE VALUE OF THE we are backward to pray, but still more to PERFORMANCE.
praise. Pressed by our difficulties, and urged 1. THE EMPLOYMENT OF DANIEL. It was by our wants, we are constrained to pray; pious. He prayed and gave thanks before but when we have succeeded, we become unhis God. He was not one of those who are mindful of our benefactor. Thus of the ten satisfied with morality without godliness. lepers that were cleansed, “one only returned He well knew that our greatest connexions to give glory to God.” And even of good are with God; and that with him we have Hezekiah it is said, when his health was reprincipally to do. He was a good neighbour, stored, and his adversaries destroyed, that à good citizen, a good master, and a good "he rendered not according to the benefit magistrate; but this did not excuse him from done him." A sad blemish! “Oh," says the worship of God. “He prayed-and gave David, “Oh that men would praise the Lord thanks-before his God.”
for his goodness, and for his wonderful works First. He prayed. Prayer is the breathing to the children of men !" And that he did of the desire towards God. Words are not not wish to enforce upon others what he negessential to the performance of it. As words lected himself, appears from his own resolumay be used without prayer, so prayer may tion: “I will bless the Lord at all times; his be used without words: he that searcheth the praise shall continually be in my mouth." heart “knoweth what is the mind of the And let us not think that he was undertaking spirit;" and when we cannot command lan- more than could ever be accomplished: for guage like some of our fellow-christians, it the injunction of the Apostle is, “ In every is well to be able to say, “Lord, all my desire thing give thanks." There is no state that is before thee, and my groaning is not hid does not require gratitude. There is always from thee."
much more to be grateful for than to complain The expediency, the necessity of prayer, of, however afflicting our circumstances may results from our indigent and dependent state. be. Yea, even those things which seem the We have enemies to overcome--and how are most unfriendly to our wishes and our welfare, we to conquer them? we have trials to en- did we know all, would probably draw forth dure and how are we to bear them? We our highest praise. For who has had not reason have duties to accomplish-and how are we to say, “It is good for me that I have been to perform them? We need mercy and grace afflicted ?” Daniel, you would naturally conto help us--and how are we to obtain them ? | clude, had much to pray for—but though & God has determined and revealed the method captive, in a strange land, and labouring unin which he will communicate the blessings der the most cruel persecution, he did not he has promised. “For all these things will forget to give thanks. I be inquired of by the house of Israel. Draw Thirdly. He did all this before his God. nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. By which we are to understand, that he Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and placed himself, in his religious exercises, unye shall find." And, as he is a sovereign, and der the eye of Jehovah, and realized his preunder no obligation to favour us at all, he has sence. Abraham was commanded to "walk surely a right to appoint the way in which before God :" and it would be well for us to he will be gracious: but, in this appointment, remember, that wherever we go, and whathis wisdom appears as conspicuous as his ever we do, God is with us, as our observer, sovereignty; and his goodness as clearly as our witness, our judge. But when we engage his wisdom. Nothing can be so beneficial to in devotional services, whether public or prius as prayer is, not only by the relief it ob- vate, we are considered as withdrawn from tains, but by the influence it exerts; not only the world, and appearing more immediately by its answers, but by its energy. Beyond before God. And to impress our minds with every thing else that is instrumental in reli- this truth is the way to secure our profit.lt gion, it improves our characters, it strength will banish hypocrisy, and formality, and care ens our graces, it softens and refines our tem- lessness; and unite our hearts to fear God's pers, it contributes to our spirituality, and name. promotes our holiness. The more we have II. THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE ACTION. to do with God, the more we shall resemble The First regards the place. He “ went him. “It is therefore good for us to draw into his house." God does not confine his renear to him."
gards to the great congregation; but “where Secondly. He gave thanks. This should al- two or three are gathered together in his name, ways attend prayer. Whenever we go to God for there he is in the midst of them." He dwellnew favours, we should be careful to acknow- eth not in temples made with hands;
" Where'or we seek him he is found, | himself: "If thy people sin against thee, and And every place is holy ground."
thou be angry with them, and deliver them And every house not only may be, but should to the enemy, yet if they shall bethink thembe, a house of prayer; and in every family selves in the land whither they were carried there ought to be an altar, to offer up spiritual captives, and repent, and make supplication sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. unto thee in the land of them that carried Daniel worshipped God in his house, and them captives, saying, We have sinned, and with his family—but this is not all. He have done perversely, we have committed worshipped God alone: he was now-not in wickedness; and so return unto thee with all the parlour, but in his chamber—the very their heart, and with all their soul, in the circumstance enjoined by our Saviour upon all land of their enemies, which led them away his followers, and who will find it to be their captive, and pray unto thee toward their land privilege as well as their duty to observe it. which thou gavest unto their fathers, the city “ When thou prayest, enter into thy closet, which thou hast chosen, and the house which and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy I have built for thy name: then hear thou Father which is in secret; and thy Father their prayer and their supplication in heaven which seeth in secret shall reward thee thy dwelling-place, and maintain their cause.” openly."
Daniel had read this prayer: he had also read The Second regards his posture. “He the prophecy of Jeremiah ; “Thus saith the kneeled upon his knees." God is a spirit; Lord, after seventy years be accomplished at and the great thing is, to worship him in Babylon, I will visit you, and perform my spirit and in truth. This may be done under good word toward you, in causing you to rean endless variety of forms and modes. We turn to this place. For I know the thoughts have always reason to fear that men are that I think toward you, saith the Lord ; drawn off from the weightier matters of the thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you law, in proportion as they are taken up with an expected end." And thus encouraged, he the external and circumstantial parts of re- hoped and believed that in due time they ligion. The Gospel has a nobler aim in view, should be released and restored. Hence in than to stoop to regulate by positive law the his prayers he always remembered Zion, and minute ceremonial order of divine worship. would give God no rest till he established, There are many things left very safely at and till he “ made Jerusalem a praise in the large, and which may be determined by cir- earth.” A public spirit is a great excellency: cumstances variously, and yet prove equally and we ought, even in our private devotions, acceptable to God, and useful to the worship- to be social; to be concerned for our country; per himself.
J and the Church of God. But though bodily exercise profiteth little, The Fourth regards the frequency of the God is “to be glorified in our bodies," as well exercise. He did it “three times a day." as " in our spirits :" and we are free to say, And surely this is little enough, considering that where it can be indulged, kneeling seems the command, “ Pray without ceasing." You to be the most proper and advantageous pos- all refresh your bodies three times a day. ture of devotion. It preserves us more from Can your souls require less? A few modistraction; it is more expressive of reverence, ments of retirement in the middle of every humility, and submission. It was not only day would much tend to keep you in the the posture of Daniel, but of Paul: “I bow things of God, and preserve you from the evil my knees unto the God and Father of our of the world. Lord Jesus Christ.” It was our Saviour's I know that habitual devotion is what we posture: “he kneeled three times, praying should seek to maintain ; but with many peoand saying the same words.” It is the pos-ple at least, that which may be always done, ture we all seem unavoidably to adopt, in is often never done; and if it be not proper private and in farnily worship.
in some cases to bind conscience, it will be • The Third regards the direction in which useful, in all cases, to remind it: regular and he performed his devotion : his windows were appointed exercises of piety are of great imopen " toward Jerusalem.” Here we see the portance. love a pious Jew bore to his native land, and David, as well as Daniel, was aware of the city of his solemnities. Though it was this, and therefore says he, “Evening and now in ruins, “ he took pleasure in her dust, morning, and at noon will I pray, and cry and favoured the stones thereof." Though aloud: and he shall hear my voice." he himself was advanced and provided for, The last circumstance is the constancy yet said he, “if I forget thee, Ó Jerusalem, and invariableness of the practice—" as aforelet my right hand forget her cunning. If I time." There was therefore nothing new in do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave it. It was not an extraordinary fervour, proto the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not duced by the spur of the occasion; it was not Jerusalem above my chief joy.”
| occasional impulse; but the regular effects When the temple was dedicated, Solomon, of principle and disposition. It was a plan in his address to God, had thus expressed he had laid down, a rule to which he always
conformed. He did it when a young man,, tain !" But Daniel knew that we are to go and he does it now he is an old one. He did on in the path of duty, whatever we meet it when he was in private life, and he does it with; that we are not allowed to decline a now he is in public office.
command of God, by reasoning from remote Many of you, perhaps, complain that you or probable consequences; that we are to cast cannot find time for duties, the importance of our care upon the Lord; and that we are which you are constrained to acknowledge. most useful when in simplicity and godly But who are you ? and what are your circum- sincerity, “not with fleshly wisdom, but by stances and engagements that you cannot the grace of God, we have our conversation secure a little time for God and your souls ? in the world.” Daniel was a man of business; of vast busi- Some would have recommended a plan of ness; a prime minister; having to inspect accommodation. “He could have withdrawn and manage the affairs of an enormous em- into the country, and concealed himself for pire: yet he retired three times a day; and thirty days. He might have discontinued not for one day only, but every day. “He the exercise of prayer, though not the incliwent into his house, and his windows being nation. He might have prayed inwardly and open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he secretly, and thus have preserved his charackneeled upon his knees three times a day, and ter and his conscience too." But Daniel prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as knew that if he had done this, it would have he did aforetime.” Remark,
| appeared to his friends, and much more to III. THE KNOWLEDGE THAT ENHANCED THE his enemies, that he had thrown up the duty VALUE OF THE PERFORMANCE.
for the sake of his secular advantage, and We all know that an action we admire was afraid to trust the God of his salvation; would not discover the same degree of prin it would have dishonoured his religion, and ciple in other circumstances. When a man have justified others in temporizing and is surrounded with honour and applause- cowardice. Whereas by acting this noble then—to think of himself soberly--this and open part, he rendered himself peculiarly evinces his humility. When a man is in- useful, and obtained the most distinguished sulted and injured—then-to rule his own honour. spirit, and to render blessing for cursing I said he rendered himself by this example this marks his patience and meekness. When peculiarly useful. Who can imagine what a man sees his danger-hut says, “None of an attention would be excited; what inquiries these things move me"- this is the trial and would be made; how many would become the triumph of his conviction and his resolu- proselytes to the Jewish religion, and adore tion. Had Daniel been ignorant of the king's a God that, unlike their abominations, was decree, his decision and courage would not able to save those that served him. Even an have appcared. But he knew that the edict was passed in honour of Daniel's Dewriting was signed, and was aware of the liverer. “Then king Darius wrote unto all consequences of disobedience-yet he deter- people, nations, and languages, that dwell in mined to stand his ground; and proved, that all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. he loved his duty more than life; and that he I make a decree, That in every dominion of who fears God fears no other fear.
my kingdom men tremble and fear before the Whence we learn, that no danger should God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and hinder a good man from doing his work. steadfast for ever, and his kingdom that which
It is natural to conclude, that some would shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall press Daniel to yield; nor is it difficult to be even unto the end. He delivereth and conjecture the reasons or excuses they would rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders urge.
in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Some would plead loyalty. “The com- Daniel from the power of the lions." mand was from the king his master, and in Why are we required to "hold forth" the honour of him too ; and would he disobey the word of life; to hold fast “the profession of order of his sovereign, and when his glory our faith ;" to “confess with the mouth," as was at stake!"-But Daniel knew how to well as believe with the heart; to “let our distinguish between civil and religious con- light shine before men, that they may see our cerns. He knew that in the former, we are good works?”—Why? Because our religion to obey the powers that be; in the latter we is to be visible as well as real; and must be are held by a higher homage: and if the com- fairly and fully exhibited, in order to be illmands of any superior contradict the compressive and profitable. It is not by trimmands of God, we are pre-engaged; and must ming and yielding, but by amiable, consistent, “obey God rather than man." Thus children firm, and uniform deportment, that we are to are only required to obey their parents “in strike and convince beholders. the Lord."
| When Sir Thomas Abney was mayor of Some would plead usefulness. “His life London, he made no scruple at the lord was in danger; and it was valuable. What mayor's feast to rise in the evening and ina loss would the world and the Church suS-form the company that he was going to w