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the highest, most exalted, and permanent felicity, and gratify the boundless wishes of the immortal soul.
And the means you are to employ being appointed by an allwise God, must be the best that can be devised; and if exercised in the way he hath directed, can never fail of accomplishing their end. For though the work is far above your own strength, yet you have the assistance of God's Holy Spirit, promised to direct and aid you in time of need; and you may therefore rest assu red, that if you are diligent, you will be enabled, through divine grace, to overcome all difficulties, and " your labours "shall not be in vain in the Lord."
When, therefore, all these considerations are put together; when you consider that the work is not impracticable,that it will be attended with peace and satisfaction in this world, and will terminate at last in complete and eternal felicity in the world to come; with what alacrity and zeal ought you to engage in it, with what earnestness and perseverance should you contend for this inestimable prize? Hence, does it not ap
pear to be an instance of consummatę folly, to delay for a moment setting about a matter of such importance? Nay, is it not madness in the extreme to despise or neglect the means which God has instituted for your advancement in holiness, and for securing your everlasting felicity? But when you consider, on the other hand, what will be your doom should you be so blind or wicked as to adopt the course of ungodliness, you surely will find reason to pause in your career of folly and danger, and to turn unto the Lord that you may live. The punishment in this case is neither small nor momentary, but is in its nature the most dreadful that can be conceived, and in its duration eternal. "Who can
"dwell," says the prophet,
" with de
"vouring fire; who can dwell with everlasting burnings ?"
If, Christians, you have found God's goodness evinced in providing for your comfort and welfare;-if you have reason to rely with confidence on the truth of his gracious promises to all who fear his name ;--you have the same reason to believe, that as he is a God of unspot
ted holiness and impartial justice he will not pass over transgression, but will put in execution the awful threatenings he has denounced against the workers of iniquity. If, therefore, you are desirous of being happy in this world, or to provide, through a Saviour, for eternal happiness in heaven, "follow," I beseech you,"holiness, without which, no man "shall see the Lord."
May God bless his word, and to his name be all praise.—Amen.
ON THE REST THAT REMAINETH FOR THE
PEOPLE OF GOD.
HEBREWS iv. 9.
There remaineth, therefore, a rest to the people of God.
THERE is perhaps no principle in our nature more strong or more universal than the desire of immortality,-nothing which the soul thirsts after so ardently as life and happiness for evermore. This kindles the first wish that pants in the human breast. This draws forth the last sigh which accompanies the departing soul to her everlasting habitation. Nay, as soon may we pretend to annihilate the soul herself, though imperishable and immortal, as to extinguish those aspirations and hopes, which animate her exertions
in the pursuit of permanent everlasting felicity. And it is perfectly agreeable to our notions of the wisdom and goodness of our infinite Creator to suppose, that he would never implant in his creatures such desires merely to vex and torment them, without furnishing a suitable object, and laying open the way to its attainment. Accordingly, when we consult the volume of inspiration, we observe to our joy that he hath not disappointed our hopes;-that he hath not left us to the feeble light of nature, and to the slow and uncertain deductions of reason for such an important discovery. In the sacred oracles of God, and more especially in the revelation made through the Lord Jesus, the truth and reality of a future state are clearly unfolded and fully established. There, we are taught to indulge the most ravishing hopes of exalted and unabated happiness beyond death and the grave. "By the resurrection of Christ from "the dead, we (Christians) are begotten "again to the lively hope of an inheri"tance that is incorruptible, undefiled, " and that fadeth not away, reserved in "heaven for those who are kept by the