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sures which are at God's right hand for evermore; that he will be permitted to see the God who created him, the Son who redeemed him, and the Holy Ghost who sanctified him; that he will be permitted to see the Lord God omnipotent, the cause of all excellency and perfection, of all love, joy, and peace, of all might, majesty, and dominion; that he will be permitted to hear, and perhaps to join in, those heavenly strains, which innumerable hosts of angels and archangels sing, when with their celestial voices, accompanied with heavenly harps, they celebrate the infinite goodness, infinite wisdom, and infinite power of God; and when in a general chorus, which vibrates all heaven with a holy joy and transporting enthusiasm, they shout, “Hallelujah! the Lord God omnipo“ tent reigneth!” In this blessed region he will probably be permitted to observe the manner in which the infinite goodness of God intends the happiness of his intellectual creatures, and the manner in which his infinite wisdom and power accomplish that happiness ; occasioning a joy, love, and admiration, the result of which is, probably, one particular feeling, issuing from and composed of that love, joy, and admiration ; vibrating his soul with

an heavenly exhilaration, so exquisitely delightful as to be wholly inconceivable by man; naturally and spontaneously expressing itself by that divine exclamation, “ Hal

lelujah! the Lord God omnipotent reign6 eth!” He will likewise, probably, have his intellectual faculties so improved as to enjoy satisfying views of truth, be associated with the spirits of just men made perfect, see the blessed army of martyrs, the holy assembly of prophets, saints, and apostles; and his soul will be charmed with the transporting consciousness, that this exquisitely happy state is neither subject to time or change, but will endure for ever*. A Sceptic will consider

* Whether the above description of the happiness of a future state is or is not admitted, it appears to me extremely useful, and even necessary, for every man to form, as well as he can, some clear and distinct idea in his mind of what he conceives will be the happiness of that state, and to reflect on this happiness very frequently; for our Saviour observes, that where our treasure is, our heart will be also; and we are ordered to set our affection on things above, and not on things on earth. Now if our hearts are to be set on any treasure, it is surely necessary, in the first place, that we should have not a confused idea of that treasure, but one as clear and distinct as our reason, aided by Scripture, can give us. Dr. Paley very justly observes, that, from the numerous sensible objects which are continually pressing on it, the idea of a future state hardly keeps its due and proper station in the human mind; it is therefore very useful to adopt some plan calculated to fix it there. Further, however this plan

this as an enthusiastic rhapsody: he may

do so if he pleases; it is however such a one as is calculated to rejoice the heart of man, and to relieve its extreme distress, and which the Scriptures warrant every person who believes in them to enjoy, though no heathen ever could, nor this Sceptic, from the coldness of his heart, the pride of his fancied superiority of intellect, and his want of faith, probably

may be supposed to fill the mind with enthusiastic feeling, it does so no more than the noble and magnificent ideas, which the consideration of a happy immortality should and ought to produce on it. It is one thing for the human mind to feel a devout enthusiasm, founded in truth, reason, and in the clear and positive promises of God made to those whose hearts are set to love, honqur, and obey him to the best of their power; and another and a very different thing, to feel an enthusiasm which has no other foundation than in the wild reveries of ignorance, passion, and a disordered imagination: and those people who are so happy as to be able to make this due and just distinction, well know, that a reasonable enthusiasm is one of the most delightful sensations the human mind does or can experience on this side the grave ; and that they cannot consult their true happi: ness more than by an indulgence of that holy enthusiasm, which a real Christian so often feels in his mind, from a contemplation of the goodness of God to the human race in general, and to himself in particular; and especially, and above all, from the consideration of that glorious expectation with which he is at present allowed to charm his soul, that, after this transitory life is over, he shall be admitted into that fulness of joy, which will arise from being in the presence of God, and from a participation in those pleasures which are at his right hand for ever


ever will enjoy. It is the contemplation on the attributes of the Deity, on his gracious conduct and promises to the human race, and on the expected happiness of a future state, by which the soul of man is vibrated with the sublimest and most perfect joy it can experience in this life; for this contemplation not only far surpasses the ideas which the heathen philosophers entertained of the sovereign good of man, but it does what their philosophy could not do; it accomplishes and establishes it on sure and unerring principles. Philosophy, not being able to penetrate with any rational certainty beyond the bounds of this life, had no sufficient data or basis, on which the sovereign good of man could be established to the satisfaction of the soul of man, which, being of heavenly extraction, seeks its native home; its powers, faculties, and feelings can only be expanded to their due and proper dimensions by heavenly, not earthly, things : accordingly our blessed Saviour, who so well knew its heavenly nature, enjoined man to set his affection not on things on earth, but on things above; by which injunction he graciously gave him that master-key, which equally opens the gates both of tem

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poral and eternal happiness, and gives him that true direction to the acquisition of his sovereign good, of true, genuine happiness, which the precepts of the wisest philosophers never could give, because they themselves did not, could not know in what it consisted. Thus the man who really sets his hopes and affections on the expected happiness of a future state, whose treasure is, in the truth and sincerity of his heart, in another and a better world, in consequence of his entire belief in the doctrines and promises of revelation ; (after his reason has been convinced, and is perfectly satisfied of their truth, by an exact and elaborate examination of the evidence on which that truth rests ;) this person not only takes the wisest way possible to ensure eternal happiness, but likewise all the genuine happiness this world can give: for his way of thinking by no means hinders his performance of the duties of his profession, or any individual or social duty enjoined him; for he well knows that no life can be pleasing to God which is not useful to man; thinking, as Lord Bacon observes, that “divinity disclaims all contem

plative life, whose beams do not give “ warmth or light to society;" and that true

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