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nay, day by day renews his offers—“ Un" to you, O man, I call, and my voice is to the sons " of men-how long will you be blind to your "own most important, your eternal interests? "how long will you embrace your own destruc"tion? wherefore will you spend your money "for that which is not bread, and your labour "for that which satisfieth not? O foolish crea"tures and unwise! shall I call so often with ❝ mercy, pardon, and happiness in my hand, and “ call in vain—are you then obstinately resolved “to perish, are you in love with your own ruin? "O yet, bethink yourselves ere it be too late, be "entreated by the bowels of mercy, to have pity 56 upon your own souls; behold, I am ready to re❝ceive you as my dear children; I will heal your "backslidings, I will love you freely, and my Sanger shall be turned away from you." Such, my friends, is the tender and affectionate language in which our offended God this day addresses his rebellious creatures, and though repeatedly refused, and repulsed, " he still waiteth "to be gracious." To conclude this head, have we not all an experimental proof of the goodness and forbearance of God, every one in his own particular case, were God as ready to punish us as we are to offend, what must have been our situation long before this time?" It is of the

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"Lord's mercy that we are not consumed;" it is because" his compassion faileth not," that we are alive before him as at this day—he has invited us sometimes by mercies, sometimes by judgments, he now invites us by the terrors of the law, and by the allurements of the gospel; he has visited us year by year, not for three or four, but some of us for twenty, thirty, forty, fifty years, in expectation of fruit; and though in too many cases he has found none, yet all that time he has spared, pitied, and admitted to further trial. This is our situation at present, and many of us, God knows, may be in the last stage of our probation; the next visit may be of a very different nature: and does it not then highly concern each of us for himself, to put the question which the trembling disciples did upon another occasion," Lord, " is it I: Lord, is it I?" O God, of thy infinite mercy forbid; let the language of our hearts be, "through thy grace, we will henceforth devote

ourselves to thee, we will this very instant em"brace the Saviour, and through his strength be "stedfast and immovable, always abounding " in the work of the Lord." I now proceed to the

Third particular; namely, the justice and severity of God against the impenitent, in his com

"fire that is not quenched," all expressive of the highest extremes of misery and pain; and no doubt the punishment which enraged Omnipotence will inflict must be inexpressibly dreadful. How awful the portion that awaits the concealed hypocrite, the carnally secure and the openly pro fane sinner! Let us tremble to think, then, that while we are practising our schemes of deceit, contriving how we may impose upon the world, or, what is worse, upon our own souls, or stretching ourselves upon the bed of sloth, calling for " a "little more sleep, a little more slumber, a little "more folding of the hands to sleep;" we may be hurried from our vain dreams, to a state where there is no deceit, no imposition, no respite; where all our secret guilt must be declared, nor the minutest circumstance concealed. But I gladly leave so gloomy a scene-humbly praying the Father of Mercies, that there may be none here who has any concern in it, in the pleasing hope, that all our souls are "bound up with God "in the bundle of life;" and ever blessed be his name, that I can now turn to a more delightful theme, contained in the

Fourth and last particular; namely, the endearing view we have of the gracious intercession of our blessed Redeemer in these words, " Lord,

willing to be happy, the united power of men and devils shall be altogether insufficient to make you miserable; for, saith Christ, "I give unto them "eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither "shall any pluck them out of my hand; for my Father, which gave them me, is greater than all, and none is able to pluck them out of my "Father's hand." Put ye on, therefore, the Lord Jesus; receive him into your hearts by faith, but let him be received whole and entire as your sanctification as well as justification, as your prophet to teach and instruct, and your king to rule and govern you, as well as your atonement and intercessor. There is not a wicked man upon earth who would not wish to partake of the benefits of Christ's death; there is none but would wish to be saved from hell; but they cannot think of being made meet for heaven, of following the example of Christ. All without exception would gladly" die the death of the righteous," however few incline to live their life. Christ, therefore, must be received as all in all—as including every thing a sinner possibly can want, and excluding all hope and help from any other quarter. Let us endeavour then to be suitably impressed with a sense of our misery by nature, of our deep guilt by reason of sin, of our worthlessness and inability to help ourselves, and of the

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mercy of God through a mediator, and let us humbly implore the Father of mercies, that "the *C eyes of our understanding being enlightened,” we may see the suitableness of the Saviour to our condition in every respect; that we may view him not only as the Saviour of a lost world, but as our Saviour and Redeemer, as containing all things necessary for our particular situation, a full supply for all our wants, a remedy for all our diseases, an atonement for all our guilt; that our hearts may be opened to receive Christ, to embrace the terms of grace and salvation through his blood; and let this be done without hesitation, and without reserve; let the language of our hearts be," my Lord, and my God, I take thee for my all in time, and for eternity;" and let us embrace the Saviour with a glow, a warmth of affection; let us, by faith, eye him as "the chief among ten thousand, and altogether lovely," as worthy, infinitely worthy of all our gratitude, esteem, and veneration, and that, both on account of what he is in himself possessed of all possible glory and excellency, but in a more endearing manner on account of what he has been and is to us, our intercessor and peace maker with God, our deliverer from hell and wrath, our way and guide, our right and title to eternal glory and happiness." This is that faith which

VOL. 11.

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