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from the commencement to the close of the Scriptures, in which the glory of God is disjoined from the falvation of
and then shall your question become entitled to consideration. To live unto Christ is to glorify God. To glorify God through Christ with your body and your spirit, which are His, is the appointed method of attaining the salvation which Christ has purchased. As a practical believer in Christ Jesus, labour that in all things God may thus be glorified : and you shall receive the end of your faith, even the salvation of
II. Advert to the general lines of human labour, and to their attendant temptations.
The most obvious and the most comprehensive of the divisions of human labour is that which, from the instrument principally employed, is denominated manual. To men occupied in this branch of exertion belongs, in its literal import, the primeval sentence; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread. Under this class are included all the toils of agriculture ; and all the ruder arts of life, by which the earth is fubdued, reduced under the do7
minion of man, and rendered, so far as is dependent on his industry, a secure and comfortable abode. In the prosecution of these objects the frame advances in robustness, and is inured to patient endurance. The hand is hardened by the spade, the arm strengthened by the hammer. The mind, in the mean time, though necessarily summoned into action, and in no respect excluded from its proportion of employment, experiences less exercise and cultivation than the body. Its powers grow torpid; and habit steps into the place of reflection. Hence, unless the heart in its proclivity to evil be stayed by supernatural grace, proceed roughness of manners, hardness of temper, covetousness, sensuality, brutish ignorance. How can be get wisdom that boldeththe plough, and that gloriets in the goad; that driveth oxen, and is occupied in their labours; and whose tolk is about bullocks ? Every carpenter, and work-master, the smith fitting by the anvil, the potter turning the wheel; all their desire is in the work of their craft (e). That stupid unconcern which extinguishes the desire of mental improvement, not feldom extends itself to the ill
(c) Eccl’hé, xxxviii. 25.-34.
terests of eternity. The welfare of the foul yields to the accommodation of the body. The man is absorbed in the cares of the hour. Toiling for daily subsistence, he labours not for the bread of life. If any man would not work; it is beyond a question that neither would be eat. We command and exbort by the Lord Jesus, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread. Do your own business, and work with your own hands ($). Yet labour not primarily for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you : for Him bath God the father sealed (8).
The next leading branch of labour is that which, exercising the faculties of the mind more extensively than the powers of the animal frame, may be denominated mental. To this branch may be referred, among other ramifications of active life, some of the ornamental arts, many of the researches of science, the duties of liberal profeffions, the functions of elevated office. Over persons dedicated to pursuits of this description, no less than over those who are funk in manual toil, impends the danger of becoming the 1) 2 Thes. iii. 10. 12, 1 Thess. iv, John, vi. 27.
slaves of a worldly fpirit, of panting for things temporal and forgetting things eternal. Among the temptations by which, if not exclusively assailed, they are more fea verely or more conspicuously encountered, are the thirst for splendid distinctions, and the pride of intellectual attainments. But how crieth the warning voice ? All fefh is grass; and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: but the word of the Lord endureth for ever. If any man think that he knoweth any thing; he knoweth nothing yet as be ought to know. The Lord giveth wisdom : cut of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. He layeth up found wifdom for the righteous (b).
In each of the classes which have been noticed, the general stimulus to labour is the desire of gain ; in the former nearly unmixed, in the latter commonly blended with eagerness for elevation. There is a third class in the middle and the higher walks of society, whose labour is ostensibly more spontaneous; a class consisting of those persons, whom wealth or competence relieves from the necessity of lucrative (b) 1 Pet. i. 24, 25, i Cor, viii. 2. Prov. ü. 6,7.
you of this description, and do you conceive yourself privileged to be idle ? If the supreme benefactor has said to you, as Pharaoh said to the brethren of Joseph; The good of all the land is yours : if, as Pharaoh planted them in Goshen, in the best of this favoured land God has made
you to dwell: of you He also demands, as Pharaoh demanded of the objects of his bounty; What is your occupation ? On you, no less than on your brethren, every day urges its title to employment. On you, no less than on your brethren, rest the general obligations of life. in proportion as you are exonerated from inferior tasks, the general obligations of life press with augmented claims. The neighbour, the friend, the son, the brother, the husband, the father, the master, is called upon to behold in his comparative leisure new ties to the assiduous performance of his duties. In his comparative leisure the landlord is summoned to recognise new motives for directing the administration of the property with which Heaven has entrusted him to the good of his dependents, and the diffusive encouragement of knowledge and piety. To you, in a special measure, are confided the execution of