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and when health totters, or conscience presses a little too hard upon you, you dispel all anxious and melancholic scruples by what you call innocent and cheerful amusements. Now the first question is, Do I seem to understand your case? for whenever a person is afflicted with any bodily malady, it always affords him satisfaction, and inspires him with confidence, to find his physician appear to understand his distemper. With this view and description of your situation, I must inform you that you fall sadly short of holiness, even in its lowest acceptation: neither are such characters seeking holiness in the right way. It has been the object of this discourse to point out to you distinctly both what holiness is, and also how ye are to attain it; and never forget, for one moment, that declaration of my text, that, "without it, no man shall see the Lord."-Now, if the blessing of Almighty God do but attend my endeavours, the consequence will be, that some, I hope many, present, will begin to reflect on the past, and to say, "Never, I fear, have I yet entertained just notions of holiness. If this morning's instruction be right, I have certainly much to learn. I must study my Bible, and ex

amine both what is the foundation and what the superstructure of Christ's religion; and I must try whether my heart is in harmony with the wonderful dispensations of God as exhibited in man's redemption. If my heart does not vibrate to the revealed account of these things, it seems I know as yet nothing either of the essence or of the beauty of holiness. And further; if this instructor be right, there is in the mode of attaining holiness a certain order, a certain connection, to be observed, which I never before suspected: and thus have I almost every thing to begin afresh. Farewel the follies and vanities of life! When I have settled the important points respecting holiness, it will be time enough to consider whether in the practice of it I shall have leisure for indulgence in such worldly things."

If, through the grace of Almighty God, such resolutions as these are forming in the minds of this numerous and attentive audience, it ought to be my most fervent prayer that, by the same gracious and powerful help, they may speedily be carried into good effect, and prove abundantly productive of that holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord." For indeed, my brethren, this is no trifling matter. We never part from each other

for a year or two, but, with several of us, the grave has for ever decided all disputes and controversies, and all our hopes and all our fears. The youngest have not long to live, the middle aged are hastening to become old, and the coffins are preparing for the aged. How gladly would I excite in all ranks and orders a greater attention to the one thing needful. My sole object is the salvation of your immortal souls; and every sentence I utter, if I judge right, tends directly to that purpose; and, agreeably to this, I also endeavour to suppress and stifle every thought and word which might, by perversion or mistake, or in any possible way, produce a contrary effect. Fully conscious of these intentions, and fully convinced that the good works which I have been enforcing are of the purest and most holy kind, and that they can arise in no other order or connection but that which I have now described, I commit, with humble hope, all that has been said to the blessing of Almighty God, who must give the increase even when Paul plants and Apollos waters.

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ECCLES. viii. 11.

Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.

THE difference of principle which usually manifests itself in the Divine government of the world, when compared with that which influences the conduct of human rulers and legislators, is so great, and at the same time so obvious, as rarely to have escaped the observation of persons of piety and reflection. One striking instance of this difference is suggested by the awful and emphatical declaration in my text, that "because

sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil."

In what is called God's moral government of mankind, this lamentable truth is exemplified every day in a thousand instances. For example: though it must be allowed that intemperance and debaucheries do at length meet their almost certain punishment, by undermining the strongest constitution and most vigorous health, yet by no means does this happen speedily. And again though ambition, no doubt, carries along with it its own punishment, nevertheless how often does it thrive for a considerable season, extending its baleful influence among families, kingdoms, and empires, before it meets with the execution of the sentence pronounced against its evil works! The same may be said of envy, malice, treachery, and innumerable other bad passions, whose evil works for a great length of time are seen to flourish, like so many green bay-trees, in this world of vanity and vexation. Add to this, that in a multitude of cases no sentence at all is executed against men's evil works in this world: the sentence of the merited punishment is not only delayed, or suspended, during many

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