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to reconcile religion with conformity to the world; and of all smooth and soothing ways of stating the great truths of Christianity. Whatever your COR-science declares should be broken off, given up, or attended to; obey its dictates promptly and implicitly. And in this way, no doubt, you will be led forward to establishment in the faith and hope of the gospel.
If any have had impressions, that have subsided, without producing a real change, they must begin all over again; and, here no particular directions seem needful, except not to yield to the discouraging thought, that it is now too late. Still, still it is said, "To-day, if ye will hear his voice, harden not your "hearts." "Behold, now is the accepted time; be
hold, now is the day of salvation." And still CHRIST says, "Him that cometh unto me, I will "in no wise cast out."
But, above all, beware of further procrastination. None can say, "what shall be on the morrow." "The Master of the house may have risen up and "shut the door;" and then it will be in vain to "stand without, and to say, LORD, open to us," as it was for the inhabitants of the old world, to seek admission into the long-despised Ark of Noah, when the days of the LORD's long-suffering were ended. Nay, it is impossible to say, whether, even if life be prolonged, Gon may not be provoked to give you up to final obduracy, and to "swear in his wrath, that "( you shall not enter into his rest."-In any view of the subject, if not now truly penitent, and seeking diligently salvation through CHRIST our LORD; you have reason to fear, lest he should at last address you
with these tremendous words: "Because I called, "and ye refused, I stretched out my hand, and no "man regarded, but ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof; I also "will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when 'your fear cometh.-When your fear cometh as deso"lation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind ; "when distress and anguish cometh upon you. Then "shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me.” "Then will I profess unto them, I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
Oh! my fellow-sinners, such of you as have been favoured with manifold advantages, and have at times seemed disposed to profit by them; if you should at last die in your sins, what an account will you have to give! What a meeting will you have, even with those who have spoken to you the word of God, and watched for your souls; who have faithfully and affectionately warned you, and earnestly persuaded you, by the love of CHRIST, and by the terror of the LORD, "not to refuse him that speaketh," not "to "neglect so great salvation!" "It would have been "better for you not to have known the way of righteousness, than to turn at last from the holy com"mandment delivered unto you."
Again let me intreat you, to reverence your consciences; and venture not to go on in any thing concerning which your own heart condemns you; for "God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all "things."-"Submit yourselves therefore to GOD. "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw
nigh to GOD, and he will draw nigh unto you. "Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your "hearts, ye double-minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, " and weep: let your laughter be turned into mourn“ing, and your joy into heaviness. Humble your"selves in the sight of GOD, and he shall lift you up.” Then will the gracious Saviour say of you, to his friends and servants, "Rejoice with me; for I have "found my sheep, which was lost:" and you also shall, ere long, share the joy.
Let me then conclude by again reminding you of the words of CHRIST, "Him that cometh unto me, “I will in no wise cast out." Imitate him, who of old cried with tears "LORD, I believe, help thou "mine unbelief;" and your sorrow shall in due time be turned into joy. And may GOD, of his infinite mercy, grant that all present may be found among those, over whom Christians and Ministers rejoice; over whom CHRIST rejoices; and who shall rejoice with him, and in his love and presence, to all eter. nity! Amen.
LUKE, XI. 13.
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children; how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
IN the former part of this chapter, our blessed Sa
viour teaches his disciples to pray; and encourages them, in the most affecting manner, to earnestness and importunity in prayer. With what energy do the illustrations, used on the occasion, address the feelings of our hearts! "If a son shall ask bread of
any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? "Or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish, give him a "serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer " him a scorpion?”
And while every one, who heard him, must find his heart revolt against a conduct so contrary to parental affection, he added the words of our text: "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good
"gifts unto your children, how much more shall "your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them "that ask him?" It is not said, to his children, but "to them that ask him ;" that the asking itself might be a ground of encouragement to every supplicant. In a parallel passage the concluding words are, "How "much more shall your Father, which is in heaven, "give good things to them that ask him ?"* But here the Holy Spirit is promised, as the best gift of GOD to those that are favoured with the gospel, and indeed, as comprehending all things which are truly and essentially good for them.
"GOD made man in his own image, after his own "likeness." He had before pronounced each part. of the creation good; but when man had been formed, and placed in dominion over the other creatures, he pronounced the whole to be very good. Yet here our LORD, addressing his own disciples, speaks of them, and of men in general, as evil: "if then ye being evil, &c." We are informed in the third of Genesis, how "by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin. Thus man became as. clay marred in the hand of the potter :" and soon after we read, that "God saw the wickedness of "man was great in the earth; and that every imagi-› "nation of the thoughts of his heart was only evil
continually. And it repented the LORD that he "had made man on the earth; and it grieved him at "his heart."—" God looked upon the earth, and "behold, it was corrupt: for all flesh had corrupted
⚫ Matt. vii. 11.