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fiable to be anxious about tempo. He says—« Fret not thyself beral blessings.

cause of evil doers ; neither be If they were not liable to be thou envious against the workers anxious about such blessings, the of iniquity. Fret not thyself be. Savior would not have used so cause of him, who prospereth in many arguments, as he urges in his way, because of the man, who our context, against such a spirit bringeth wicked devices to pass.” of anxiety. But it appears prob- The people of the world allow able, from experience and observ- themselves to form and practice ation, as well as from the Savior's such devices to acquire temporal instructions, that there is no evil, blessings, as pious persons are unin which real christians, general- willing to adopt. In view of the ly, are more liable to indulge them- worldly designs, exertions and selves than an anxious concern prosperity of sinners, they are very about temporal blessings. And liable to be troubled and anxious there are several considerations, respecting their own temporal conby wbich they are induced to fall cerns. into this evil.

2. Christians are liable to be 1. They are liable to become anxious about temporal blessings anxious about such blessings from from their constant need of these seeing the temporal prosperity blessings. Though they are apt of worldly people. Christians are to desire a greater portion of templaced among the people of the porał blessings, than they really world, who have their portion in need, or would use in a proper this life. Though worldly people manner, yet they do need many are not always prosperous in their favors to supply their constant and pursuits, yet they are more com- numerous necessities. And when monly indulged in earthly riches, they consider how much they do honors and pleasures than the peo- need and shall need, as long as ple of God. While the people of they live, they are apt to be God are witnesses of their designs, troubled and to be anxious, sayexertions, possessions and enjoy- ing--- What shall we eat and ments, they are greatly tempted what shall we drink? and whereto imbibe their spirit and to be- withal shall we be clothed ???-come anxious for those temporal They sometimes find themselves blessings, which they see so gen- needy and destitute of such blesserally and bountifully bestowed ings, as are necessary for the upon the ungodly. The psalmist comfort and support of their lives. penitently confesses, that he was And in such a state of constant envious and anxious, when he saw want, they cannot be ignorant nor the prosperity of the wicked.-- insensible of their situation. And Against this occasion of worldly they are very apt to be careful anxiety God cautions his people. and troubled about the many things they need ; and to be And they can then say— The thoughtful and anxious about the Lord is our shepherd; we shall supply of their constant and nu- not want." But if their faith submerous necessities.

sides and their hearts turn from 3. Christians are liable to be God, they become troubled and anxious about temporal blessings, anxious about every object, hy because, very often, they can see which they are affected. And no way to obtain the favors they as they are very liable to decline need. Sometimes their former from God in their hearts, they are sources fail ; and they know not in danger of falling into a distrustwhat way to turn, nor where to ful spirit. Then they are anxious look for the supply of their neces- respecting temporal blessings.sities. Sometimes their necessi. This spirit of unbelief and disties are greatly increased, with trust is the real foundation of all out any increase of their resour- sinful anxiety in christians. And ces. Many pious persons have so long as they are liable to disbeen reduced to the most strait- trust divine providence, they will ened and needy circumstances ; be equally liable to be anxious and yet they have been unable to about temporal blessings. see from one day to another how It is now proposed, they could obtain their daily II. To show why christians bread. In such straits they are should not be anxious about temvery liable to be anxious and to poral blessings. The Savior uses think they have good reasons to a number of arguments, in our be troubled respecting their tem- context, to persuade his people poral affairs. But if they are sub- against the indulgence of an anxjected to no present suffering, in jous spirit. And we need look no respect to temporal blessings,they farther, than what he says on this are apt to indulge an enquiring subject, for reasons that should inand anxious spirit respecting fu- duce christians not to be anxious turity, when they can see no way about temporal blessings. As one to supply their future and expect- reason against their being anxious, ed necessities. Their anxiety is he intimates, apt to arise and increase, as favora- 1. That by being anxious they ble appearances and prospects les would be like those, who are sen or cease. Again,

wholly destitute of religion. Hav4. Christians are liable to be ing spoken the words of our text, anxious about temporal blessings, he adds, “ For after all these as they are disposed, through unbe- things do the gentiles seek.” The lief to be distrustful of divine prov- pations, whom he calls the genidence. When their hearts are tiles, were then in heathenish fixed, trusting in God, they leave darkness and wickedness. They all their concerns in his hands.-- were without the knowledge and


favor of the true God. Their christians consider the character chief concern and pursuit extend- of God, and their relation to him, ed no father than to temporal they are contented and satisfied in blessings. For the children of believing that he considers what God to resemble persons of such they need, and is properly affecta character, would be very dis- ed by their necessities. pleasing to their Father in heav- 3. As another reason against en, and very injurious to them- worldly anxiety, the Savior diselves. And it is at presetit an rects his disciples to consider the important reason against worldly providence of God towards inferianxiety in christians, that the peo- or creatures. From what God ple of the world are anxious a- does in feeding the fowls of the bout the objects of time and sense. air, and in clothing the grass of To be conformed to the world the field, he shows they have no in this respect, is inconsistent with reason to be distrustful respecttheir character, profession and ing his providing for their tempoprivileges. If christians would ral necessities. He says, “Beshow, that they differ from world- hold the fowls of the air; for they ly people, they must not be anx- sow not, neither do they reap, ious about worldly things. But if nor gather into barns; yet your like the world, they are anxious heavenly Father feedeth them. about these things, they dishonor Are ye not much better than their heavenly Father and act un- they ?" Again he says, “Why take worthy of their holy profession. ye thought for raiment ? ConsidIt may be observed,

er the lillies of the field; how 2. As another reason against they grow : they toil not, neither worldly anxiety in christians, the do they spin. And yet I say unto

I Savior declares that their heaven- you, that even Solomon in all his ly Father knows that they need glory, was not arrayed like one temporal blessings. He says of these. Wherefore, if God so 6. Your heavenly Father knoweth clothe the grass of the field, which that ye have need of all these to-day is ; and to-morrow is cast things.” By his knowing what into the oven, shall he not much they need, is meant that he consid- more clothe you, O ye of little ers and regards their necessities. faith?” After giving such instrucHe constantly sees what they tion, well might the Savior say, need; and he feels a lively and “Therefore, take no thought, tender interest in their circum- saying, What shall we eat? or stances. While God is so concern- what shall we drink? or whereed for his people, they ought not withal shall we be clothed ?" to be troubled and anxious about 4. As another reason against temporal blessings, but should cast worldly anxiety, the Savior inti. all their cares on him. When mates, that it can produce no

good effect. He says, “ Which are more excellent and important of you by taking thought, can add than temporal. For this reason one cubit unto his stature ?" To christians should set their hearts these words, according to Luke, upon heavenly objects and not be the Savior adds this question, anxious about earthly things. * If ye then be not able to do that Again, thing, which is least, why take ye 6. Anxiety about temporal thought for the rest ?? Worldly blessings is inconsistent with the anxiety never removes por lessens service, which christians owe to a person's necessities; but it pre. God. They are required and are vents him from enjoying what he bound to devote themselves to his has, and unfits bim for receiving service, and give him the first and what he needs. An anxious spirit highest place in their affections about worldly concerns and tem- and exertions. But they always poral enjoyments, is perfectly un- turn their hearts from God, when reasonable, as it is totally ineffect- they become anxious about themual.

belves and the temporal blessings 5. An anxious spirit about tem- they need. This consideration poral blessings withdraws the at- the Savior also urges against an tention and the affections from anxious spirit. He says--66 No spiritual objects. This consider-man can serve two masters ; for ation the Savior offers, in our con- either he will hate the one and text, as another reason against love the other; or else he will worldly anxiety. He says, “ Lay hold to the one and despise the not up for yourselves treasures on other. Ye cannot serve God and earth, where moth and rust doth mammon.” He then adds, “Therecorrupt; and where thieves break fore, I say unto you, take no through and steal : but lay up for thought for your life, what ye yourselves treasores in heaven, shall eat, or what ye shall drink; where neither moth nor rust doth nor yet for your body, what ye corrupt; and where thieves do shall put on.” An anxious and selnot break through nor steal. For fish spirit hinders worldly people where your treasure is, there will from becoming religious. It also your heart be also.” The cares prevents christians, so far as it of this life, the Savior mentions, prevails, from being faithful and in explaining the parable of the joyful in the service of God.sower, as one of the causes, that Christians cannot serve God, while choke the word, and render the they allow themselves to be anxhearers of the gospel unfruitful. ious concerning their own tempo. While persons are anxious about ral necessities. Besides, temporal concerns, they bring 7. Christians should not be anxleanness into their souls. But ious about temporal blessings, be. spiritual interests and enjoyments cause the kingdom of God should


engage their first and bighest at- makes many promises of the temtention. “Seek ye first the king- poral blessings, which they may dom of God and his righteous- need, to his people in various ness," is the requirement of the parts of the holy scriptures. They Savior, in connection with the pro- ought to take his word, as the hibition, that is given in our text. foundation of their confidence and The enlargement and prosperity to cast all their cares upon him. of the kingdom of God on earth, But as a distrustful and anxious call for the constant attention and spirit rejects and opposes the kind vigorous exertions of his people. and gracious promises of God, it To turn from this great and no- is highly sinful and offensive. The ble object to their temporal neces. character, the conduct and the sities is very unwise and sinful. word of God, forbid and condemo Their very prayers forbid an anx- an anxious spirit respecting temious spirit about temporal objects. poral blessings:--It is, then, for For they are taught to pray, say- the wisest and best reasons, that ing, 66 Our Father, who art in the Savior says in our textheaven, hallowed be thy name. 66 Take no thought, saying,

what Thy kingdom come. Thy will be shall we eat; or what shall we done on earth as it is done in heav- drink; or wherewithal shall we en.” According to these petit- be clothed ?" ions should always be the feelings of their hearts and the actions of 1. If christians have no reason their lives. But such petitions are to be anxious about temporal bles: inconsistent with such a spirit, as sings, then with a right spirit they leads a person to indulge anxious will be very happy respecting thoughts about his own temporal these blessings. With such a spirpecessities. Let christians feel it, they will be content with such and act, as they ought in respect things as they have; and will to the glory of God and the ad- trust in God for what they may vancement of his kingdom; and need. Being relieved and conthey will not be careful and tented in respect to the things of troubled about the vain and tran- this life, they will be prepared to sient objects of this world. Once perform the duties and enjoy the more,

blessings of the gospel. And they 8. God promises to christians, will find that “godliness with con. who are faithful and obedient to tentment is great gain.” With a him, all the temporal blessings right spirit a christian can say they may need. In our context, with the psalmist. 66 The Lord the Savior says" Seek ye first is my shepherd; I shall not want. the kingdom of God and his right- Surely goodness and mercy shall eousness and all these things shall follow me all the days of my life.” be added unto you."

And God If christians will only keep them


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