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Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, to fulfil it.

I. It is one duty of the minister to preach. Accordingly his life should be a life of untiring study. Unless he can put himself in the place of the sacred authors, seeing as they saw and feeling as they felt, he will not fully comprehend all their writings. This can be accomplished only by laborious research and perseverance.-He must know the history, doctrines and evidences of christianity; and must see how the sacred torch has been handed down from age to age. He must go back centuries and take wide and thorough surveys. As he follows the stream back to its fountain, he will find it has been coloured by every different bed over which it has passed. He must know the nature of the mind, affections and passions; and penetrating the inmost recesses of the soul he must mark out the ruling motive, among the complicated mass, from which an individual acts. He must converse with society, as it is found at rest, and when it is agitated and troubled by strong passion. It should be a volume before him, where he can read, and note down his private marks for future use. In this manner he must learn how to display the great principles of christianity in their beauty, and how to make men feel them in their sanctifying power. He must use the most pure and familiar language, setting his richest jewels in the simplest frames. He must be slow to speculate, regarding it his great duty to pour light on the sacred pages. If he does not practice prudence in preaching, he will be a public calamity. He is to touch the harp of the prophet, but let him avoid that unholy violence which snaps its chords. It belongs to the science of prudence in a young man to avoid much controversy, and especially all uncharitable denunciations, in his sermons. Let him preach down errour, by preaching up truth. He ought not to spend his time in examining the thorns upon the hill of Zion, while he is graciously permitted to gather its fruits. Let him look to the goodly proportions, the majesty and splendour of the temple there, and listen to the promises of the mercyseat, and leave others to pluck up the few weeds which spring up in its courts. Be good and do good, must be the alpha and omega of his preaching.

II. The minister must visit his people. He must be nothing but the minister among them. His life should be one eloquent sermon. He has but one errand in his parochial visits, which is to make his people happy by persuading them to become holy. He must discover their needs, in order to supply them; their errours in order to correct them; their pursuits, in order to guard them. He should feel himself an inmate of every family of his charge. To the sick, he must be a cheerful visitor-to the dying, he must be an angel of hope-and to the afflicted, he must come a heaven-directed messenger of consolation.

III. He must attend to the young. They peculiarly need his counsel, guidance and encouragement. His success will be greatest and richest among the young. He must plan for them; meet them ; win them and love them. He must shew them the temple of their wishes, and point out plainly the avenues which conduct them to it. He must present God as the loving Father of mankind and Jesus Christ as the benevolent Saviour. He must be to every child in his parish, an unsuspected guide, a beloved monitor, a ready protector, a welcome associate.

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And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; and to esteem them very highly in love, for their works' sake.

If it is the first duty of the minister to preach, it is an equal duty of the people to hear. A constant and punctual attendance on the institutions of christianity is indispensable. Christian friendsNeglect of public worship is treachery to your minister; it is something far worse, it is treachery to your souls. For public instruction, you build churches, and settle your minister, and by the one act of absence you defeat your great object. In social worship, your moral fortitude is strengthened, your friendships nourished, your faith enlivened, your sympathies enlarged and your souls sanctified. To be regular at public worship is a duty you owe to your consistency, to your friends, to the young, to society, to yourself, to your Saviour, and to your God. If you offer those figleaf excuses which are of en made, you are unworthy followers of Jesus Christ. Those who stay at home, when they can go, generally spend the Sabbath improperly. We are social beings, deriving light and heat from each other, and we may not neglect the duties which grow out of these relations. You should go to the house of God with a devout spirit; with the sacrifice ready on the altar of the heart, never doubting but that the fire of heaven will descend to light it up.

II. You must receive with candour your minister's instructions. Unless so received, they will be worse than useless. Think him not your enemy because he tells you unwelcome truths, and disturbs sinners.-Nor should you come to the temple to indulge a fashionable taste, or to watch for strains of eloquence. That minister is not worthy of his place who creates or favours such wishes in his people. Be satisfied with a clear and luminous exposition of gospel truth. This will nourish and save your souls. Remember how numerous are your minister's duties, and let your judgment be that of a brother.

III. Put a charitable construction on your minister's general conduct. Let him not be spoken of, with wounding severity, especially before the young. Consider his character as committed to your charge. Is the mantle of charity broad enough to cover the errours of all, save him? You must stop the current of unmerited censure. When you recollect that the ambassador who comes among you, though with a divine commission, yet bears it forth from the ranks of man, with the common imperfections, exposures and partialities of his race, you should make the allowances which reason and love dictate.

IV. Esteem him very highly in love. Give him that affection, which shall enable him to ask for your co-operation in his good endeavours, and which shall testify your confidence. If he is called to take lead in what he cannot accomplish by his single arm, you must not desert him. If he goes forward in acts of beneficence, you must go with him; otherwise you palsy his resolution and chill his sympathies.

God grant, that ministers may give to the hungry the bread which came down from heaven, and to the thirsty the water of life; and that at length all may meet in heaven, happy pastors and happy people.



Be content with such things as ye have.

Look on those below, as well as on those above you-nay look on all; but look with impartiality-and, when you have considered fairly, what they want as well as what they possess ; what they suffer as well as enjoy-then say, whether your own wants are not, to you, more tolerable; your own possessions, more valuable; your own evils, more light and easy; and your own blessings more truly desirable. Few perhaps of those discontented persons, who are continually extolling the state of others, and bemoaning their own, would be willing, on a strict comparison, to make a complete exchange, personal for personal, accidental for accidental advantages; wealth for wealth; friends for friends. Nay, were the exchange made in the imagination merely, the same repining spirit would be again immediately at work. In fact, God judges best; and distributes, in the kindest manner, his blessings to us all. We know not what is truly good for ourselves; but he knows every thing; and his providence has determined the bounds of our habitation: his wisdom has ordained all the circumstances of our being; and it becomes us not to prescribe or murmur, but to acquiesce; and to be thankful that our concerns are in wiser hands than our own.

Consider, how much the Divine bounty exceeds our deserts. How have we improved the blessings we already enjoy? and how far have we conformed to his most holy and gracious purpose in conferring them? Moreover, is discontent and murmuring, likely to engage the favour of God and to attract his blessing? or to endear us to our friends, to conciliate the love and esteem of our fellow creatures? And what effect can possibly have upon our own minds? Will the indulgence of such a disposition increase or diminish the true satisfaction of life? If our lot be humble, and our pleasures few; let us not despise the gifts of God's goodness; it may be, that, having been grateful and faithful, in a very little, we shall be finally rewarded with a larger portion.

If we are inclined to murmur in a lower station; what would have been our conduct in a higher; our views enlarged; our desires increased; our pride fed with surrounding splendour and all the incense of flattery? And, if mankind at large were of this temper, and determined they would never be happy while any one was above them; or while they could conceive in imagination a more eligible condition than their own; it is plain, that, in the first case, only one individual could be happy; in the second, none at all.

Instead, therefore, of being the ingenious artificers of our own misery, let us make a better use of our reason. If Providence offers us the means of attaining a happier state, let us thankfully embrace them. But if the will of God appoint otherwise, before we admit a repining thought, let us first endeavour to recount, if we can, the numberless calls we have for gratitude. Are the blessings you enjoy so very inconsiderable; or are your desires so insatiable, that nothing on earth could equal their demands? Then raise your eyes to heaven there behold robes of glory destined for man to wear-scenes of immortal bliss, for man to enjoy. But remember, they who aspire to the happy life hereafter, are expected and required, by a wise and virtuous use of the blessings given, to become qualified for the reception of more exalted enjoyments, more extended powers.

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Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

IN the broad scheme of gospel ethics, the opposite to anger is meekness; and meekness is no narrow or superficial virtue. It is a grace, which receives little of the applauses of the world; a grace, which Jesus alone inculcated, and which no philosopher of ancient times seems to have understood, or recommended.

The meek man of the gospel is the very reverse of those, who act the most bustling and noisy part on the theatre of human life. He finds himself in a world, where he will be oftener called to suffer, than to act. He is not ambitious, because he sees little here worth ambition. Humility is the gentle and secret stream, which runs through his life, and waters all his virtues. To the government of the passions, the principal prerequisite is the restriction of the desires; therefore, as he expects little from the world, he will not often quarrel with it for the treatment he receives. In short, the meek man of scripture considers himself placed here, not in a state of enjoyment, but of trial; and to be passionately fond of pleasures, which are insecure, or to be passionately disturbed at injuries, equally transitory, seems to him utterly unworthy of a being, destined soon to leave this scene of rebuffs and disappointments, and capable of existing for ever in a region of immortality and peace. Finding himself, at present, in a state full of jarring elements, and of violent changes, the sunshine, which is frequently interrupted without him, he endeavours to preserve in mild lustre within his own breast. No dark clouds of discontent, no storms and whirlwinds of passion deform the serenity of his mind. Where others are transported, he is calmn; where they are restless, he is patient; where they are passionate, rude and unforgiving, he is mild, peaceable, full of mercy and reconciliation. His controul of his passions is not so much the result of any present and strong resolution, as of the general temper of his mind. When he is reviled, he reviles not again, because he feels no disposition to revile. When he suffers, he threatens not, because the style of threatening is, to him, an unknown tongue. He has been accustomed to commit his cause to him, that judgeth righteously. How equable is the career of meekness! How easily sits upon the meek man the government of his passions! How gracefully does he sway his sceptre ! He is not in perpetual danger of suffering from excess, he is not obliged unceasingly to watch, and curb, and reign in a wild and headstrong spirit; but his course through life is gentle and secure, as it tends to that peaceful bourne, where he will find quietness and assurance for ever.

How unlike this is the spirit of the times! How little does this temper consist with a state of passions in constant turmoil, with provocations ever recurring, and quarrels hardly appeased; a state marked with incessant agitation of the spirits, and feverish sensibility to injury or insult! A meek man in this world of ours is hardly acknowledged by his species. For what shall he do in a society, where to kindle with resentment, is spirited and noble; and to retaliate an affront, is the dictate of honour? Where shall the meek pupil of Jesus hide, in this bustle of contending passions and unrestrained pursuits? He will find, alas, that this is not the place of his abode. He must live above the world, while he lives in it, that he may breathe a purer and a calmer air.




Diligent in business, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord.

YOUNG FRIENDS-Are you just starting in your career; and do you feel ambitious of excellence? It is well that I should cheer you in your upward progress, and guard you against excessive action. Another month has just closed, and it has carried up its irrevocable account to God. Let me ask you to use the flight of time as the awakening argument to moral despatch. Your heart must be given to God. He began to do you good before you knew him, and you are now to return to him piety and gratitude. He shielded your infancy from death, and your childhood from dangers, and he asks you to give your preserved being to his service, which is the service of your happiness. Does not divine beneficence enter upon its silent course, before our capacity of acknowledgment commences? Do not good gifts come down from above, before it is in the power of praise to ascend from the lip, or from the life of man? before the wings of devotion are grown; before the hands of virtue are capable of being lifted up? Is not the debt of gratitude to Heaven immense, before a single expression of it can be made by man? Is there a day, is there an hour, is there an instant, in all our whole existence, in which the arm that holds us in life is withdrawn? in which the hand that pours forth blessings upon us is closed? Why then, during any part of life, should we be silent in his praise, should we be inactive in his service, to whom we owe every breath of it which we draw, every enjoyment of it which we possess. Let not a single sun go down upon our disobedience to the Being, who causes every sun to rise upon us. As soon as moral understanding begins to dawn, as soon as conscience enters on its office, as soon as thought can mount to heaven, and the infant mind is able to find a celestial Father out, let it lift itself up unto him. With the first moment of reflection, let obedience begin to the Being, whose benevolence to us began, with the first instant of our existence. As debtors to heaven, then, it is time for the youngest among you, to be up, and doing your duties. I call upon them, of whose moral day it is but the break, to arise, and go forth to the business of it. However early, it is not too soon to set out. Your duty to God admits not of a moment's delay.

No more does your duty to yourselves. If you would secure the character of those "just persons that need no repentance," if you would avoid the moral pains of memory; if you would never know the pang of parting with a vice which habit has wrought into the heart, a pang like that with which the soul and the body part; if you would escape more painful abstinence, more severe self denial, than God and nature have exacted from man; if you would effect that equality between your proficiency in virtue, and your opportunities for improvement in it, which shall banish every doubt from your confidence towards God, and secure your accession to that seat in the celestial society, upon which nature has set your name; if you would do yourselves this complete justice, you must instantly begin to work-for your years have begun to go. While you hesitate, they will not tarry. Early life brings along with it advantages for the cultivation of virtue, to which later life is a stranger; if you would have them, you must snatch them immediately; if you slumber over them, they will not wait your waking hour.

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