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Death is a sinner's greatest enemy,

for he cuts him off from all his enjoyments. Those things which he wholly depended on, and pursued with all his might and strength, are lost to him at death. All his delights must be parted with; and all his honours, riches, pleasures, and friends, must be left behind; for he has to leave the world the same poor destitute worm he entered it. The things which a sinner has loved in this life, instead of proving comforts, are his greatest torments in death--that dread moment when he is about to stand before the bar of his offended God.

Death, the sinner's enemy, rouses him to concern. He feels alarmed, and becomes thoughtful, when Death is close at his heels. The feebler his hold upon time, the stronger his dread of eternity. At death he sees that

of woe.

worlds are not comparable to the worth of the soul. He then believes that there is a God, a heaven, a hell; and whatever doubts he might once have cherished, it is then they are no more: he finds unbelief will not impart one ray of hope, nor take away one pang

At death every thing appears in a different light to a sinner, and all things have a threatening, fearful aspect. Hypocrisy no longer wears its mask. The death-bed of a sinner is a place where anxiety prevails and horror reigns. There conscience, so long unheeded, appears in terrific garb, and holds forth the long and black catalogue of mercies abused, and sins unrepented.

“ Death! 'tis a melancholy day,

To those that have no God,

When the

soul is forc'd away

To seek her last abode.
In vain to heaven she lifts her eyes ;

But guilt, a heavy chain,
Still drags her downwards from the skies,

To darkness, fire, and pain.”

3rdly. Death is the best friend of a Christian. It takes him from a world of iniquity and suffering, to one of purity and peace.

Sin is the great tormentor of a Christian in this world, and it is continually trying to ruin him; but when death arrives, he is freed from it: he enters upon a state that is pure and undefiled; a state where sin is unknown, and holiness for ever reigns. At death

Sin, his worst enemy before,
Shall vex


and ears no more ; His inward foes shall all be slain, Nor Satan break his peace again.”

Death ends all the Christian's pains and sorrows. The last suffering sigh of a believer in this world, is the first note of endless praise in heaven. The road a child of God travels in this world is a thorny one, and he gets sorely wounded; but at death his pains are all ended, and his sorrows all cease; he is taken to a world where he 6 obtains joy and gladness, and where sorrow and sighing are done away."

4thly. The certain and only cure for death is an interest in the merits and death of Christ. We never need be afraid of the greatest enemies, if we know they can do us no harm; and we can have nothing to fear from death, if we have fled to the Redeemer. The Saviour, by the sacrifice of himself, overthrew the dominion, and destroyed the power of death, agreeably to those

66 O

words, “O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction.»* The blood of Jesus is the effectual cure for Death's sting; so that all who are united to him by “ a living and true faith,” may contemplate death without alarm, and boastingly say, death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory ?

5thly. It is of the utmost importance to be prepared for death. It is a solemn affair to die, but awfully solemn to die unprepared. In comparison with it every thing dwindles into nothing. If we constantly dwelt upon this momentous subject, we should not manifest so much unconcern as we often do. Death is a dreadful foe, but very few persons prepare to meet him. Even the name of death is so fright

* Hosea xiii. 14.

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